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My first (eventual) NSFW thread on twitter, and of COURSE it’s #KiriBaku

Bakugo is Trans, Gay, and Horny. He’s also 23, a Pro Hero, and hasn’t gotten laid in four years.

Please QRT if you want to comment. Makes this easier on Bookmark users.

Here goes nothing!
Being horny is the worst! And if you pair that with being a Pro Hero who can’t go out and get laid on a whim because it might ruin your public image? Bakugo Katsuki is in absolute HELL right now because of that, and all he can do is deal with it later.
Like always. At home. In bed. Alone. Probably with his trusty sidekick.

His Hitachi.

He’s just horny though, it’s not even a problem!
… Except that it IS because he’s GAY and every guy he works with tends to be attractive as sin and prone to walking around half naked. He’s seen Calamari Donkey’s dick more times than the idiot’s past girlfriends probably have.
It’s a nice dick too, which is the worst thought to cross Katsuki’s mind in weeks. He does NOT want to fuck Pikachu, or vice versa. It’s just… his dick is nice…

Fuck he’s desperate if he’s thinking about Denki’s dick.
But he can’t help it! His friends do their best to be considerate, but they’re also absolute MORONS at the same time. They pop boners and laugh it off, it happens, they all are used to it.
There’s an entirely separate stall at the end of the showers for people who just can’t control themselves. Which is a few of them.

Katsuki has never used it, but mostly because the shower head isn’t detachable like it is at home.
Also, sue him, but he’s loud when he gets off. What’s the point of trying to be quiet? Why hold back when it just… feels better to make noise? And yeah, maybe he’s a narcissist, but he makes some hot fucking noises.
A grand total of three people know how loud he gets, and two of them entirely by accident.
Handsy, because he lived down the hall from Katsuki for three embarrassing years of jerking off thinking the walls were thicker than they were.
Deku, because apparently no one told him that a sock on the fucking doorknob meant he was getting plowed for his birthday.
And Kirishima, who was doing the plowing.
But he hasn’t seen Kirishima since they split on his twentieth birthday, but they'd stopped having sex before that. Hero work broke them down, and then their paths just… led them in two separate directions.
Katsuki went on the Endeavor’s agency, then built his own with Deku and Icy Hot when it became clear that Endeavor wasn’t going to get them any farther, and Kiri…

Had gone to Australia without a backwards glance.
It hadn’t bothered him at first, Katsuki was a big boy and they’d both agreed to end the relationship mutually. But after the first year without a card or call, he’d gotten ANGRY.
Fury fueled him for a good month or two until Deku had to sit his ass down for an intervention. Which, yeah, sure. He deserved that.

But that isn’t the point! The point is he’s horny and the only guy he’s ever trusted enough to sleep with him is fuck knows where anymore!
Although it isn’t like he doesn’t trust people, he’s not the idiot bastard child he was in high school. If he were, Kirishima never would have slept with him.
But trusting someone to have your back in a fight and trusting someone to go down on you like a dehydrated man in the desert are two VERY different things.

God he misses Kirishima’s tongue.
Even though he’s filling out disaster relief reports, his mind is back to age nineteen, sharing a shitty one bedroom apartment with Kirishima and climbing on top of him after a shower.
He remembers Kirishima had been laying on his back, staring up at the screen of their busted tv and playing fucking Minecraft or something, and he’d paused the game and thrown the controller toward the couch when Katsuki had spread his thighs on either side of his head.
Katsuki had rode Kirishima’s face for what felt like hours, Kiri's tongue fucking into him and sharp teeth filling his entire body with adrenaline any time he glanced them over Katsuki’s dick or folds.
He shakes his head, shifting in his seat. He can FEEL how wet he is and it’s mortifying, but fuck… he wants to get laid.

-*-*-
_*_*_

Katsuki lets his mind wander some more since he can do two things at once, and when he finishes the reports he’s left stewing in his own thoughts. As well as his boxers.
Going home early to get off a few times wouldn’t be bad form, would it?
Shit. It would be HORRIBLE form, but fuck, it’s not like he can stick his hands down his pants and ride his fingers until he’s screaming.
Deku barges in unannounced too often for that kind of relief.

“Kacchan!”

Speak of the god damn devil.
“What?” Katsuki leans forward, hiding his lower half behind his desk. Deku’s standing in the doorway, hair even messier than normal. There’s also blood on his cheek and dripping from his nose.
Icy Hot is behind him, dripping something thick and purple onto the tiled hallway. He’s scowling as a sidekick attempts to mop him up. Ember has a rolling mop bucket full of towels trailing after them. She looks more miserable than Todoroki does.
“I need you to go to the airport.” Deku states, wincing and then shooting a hand up to his nose. He covers it in time to shield a blast of blood that sprays out. “Oww!”

“What the fuck?” Katsuki doesn’t move from his spot at his desk.
“He got punched by a nosebleed quirk.” Icy Hot states. “The more people he’s around, the worse the nosebleeds. It’ll last another hour.”

Katsuki hisses in sympathy.
“Deku, go home.” It’s as close to an order as Katsuki can get. “Or go upstairs and lock yourself in your office. Don’t get blood on my carpet.”
“I need you at the /airport/ though.” Deku whines around his pinched nose. Blood drips down one knuckle as he stumbles away from Icy Hot and their sidekick.
Katsuki rolls his eyes and turns back to Todoroki, who is still being mopped up by a very distressed Ember. She looks ready to cry, which is normal for her when any of them get something as small as a paper cut.
But Todoroki, while he’s scowling at the goop on him and not at Ember, is always there for Katsuki, and fills him him on what’s actually going on.
“We’re getting a new Hero for the agency, they’re flying in from Wales.”

“Wales? Like England?”

“No like the fucking fish.” Todoroki snaps. Ember steps back and makes this noise of discomfort. “Sorry.” He sounds genuine enough.
“Why do we need a new Hero?” Katsuki drops his elbows to the wooden desk and watches as Deku pulls out a packet of tissues to wipe up his face. “We’ve got plenty of sidekicks, promote one of /them./ Ember, you want a promotion?”
Ember looks over at him and promptly sets her skin on fire. “How do I politely tell you I’d rather swallow glass than be in the spotlight?” She asks.

She’s his favorite.
“Not on the tile.” Todoroki mutters. “You eat through it if you stay on fire for too long. This isn’t my floor, remember?” Because Todoroki has fire clay for flooring and Katsuki has tile and plush carpet.
“Sorry Shouto.” Ember’s flames fade out, but her body crackles like a camp fire. “Sorry Ground Zero.”

“You’re fine, you know I don’t care.” Katsuki doesn’t mind the scorch marks, he’s made enough by himself. “What about Base Drop?”
Deku whines and gives Katsuki a pointed look. “Airport, terminal G. He’ll know you when he sees you.”

“You’re not going to tell me who it is?” Katsuki shoots an exasperated look to Todoroki, who shoots one back. They suffer together.
He can be Shouto for the rest of the day then.
“Look, it’s you or Shouto.” Deku says, waving an arm as a glob of purple ikor plops off Todoroki’s head. It startles Ember so much she squeaks.
“Fucking end me.” Shouto says it deadpan. “Right now, put me out of my misery. I still have four hours of mandatory patrol left and only twenty minutes to get this off of me.”

“I’m trying.” Ember whines.
“You’re doing great.” Katsuki reassures her. Her quirk isn’t really meant for clean up though. Ember can see body heat and transfer her own to other people. She has the added bonus of being able to set herself on fire so she’s great for winter rescues.
But cleaning? Yeah she’s not good at cleaning. “Take him to the showers and hose him down.”

“Can’t get this wet for an hour.” Shouto grouses. “That makes it expand.”

He’s really fucked.

“Katsuki!” Deku practically shouts. “Will you please-”
“Yes, fuck, okay!” Katsuki rolls his eyes and pushes away from his desk. His pants are uncomfortable, he’ll have to change boxers before he leaves.
“Get out of doorway. I’ll go. Ember, go get Proto Bomb and force him to help you. If he says no, tell him he can expect a pink slip from me in the morning.” He stomps over to the door and goes to shut it.
“Thank you Kacchan!” Deku shouts.

“Yes Sir, Ground Zero, Sir.” Ember shouts, her skin crackling.

“I think I hate my job.” Shouto mutters as purple slime trails down his cheek.

Katsuki shuts the door on them.

_*_*_
_*_*_

Katsuki has /never/ liked the airport, and honestly, they aren’t too fond of /him/ either. Despite having complete control over his quirk and proper documentation for his Hero Status and gender, they ALWAYS find some reason to pull him aside and make him late.
So if he can help it, he never flies.

… Shouto’s private jet doesn’t count. None of them can be mad flying around in something that Endeavor bought Shouto out of guilt for forgetting a single birthday.
He hadn’t even wanted the damn thing, but now any time any of them show up in the jet, Endeavor looks like he’s been slapped in the face.

Katsuki has /absolutely/ rubbed as much pettiness into Shouto as he possibly can over the years, and it shows.
‘What if I quit and became a baker.’ Shouto texts him while he sits in a chair that’s too small and sticky despite being fabric lined.

‘You can’t bake.’ Katsuki texts back.
‘An engineer then?’ There’s only a few seconds before another text comes in. ‘I could go back to college.’

‘You hated college.’

‘I hated the teacher, not college. I could work anywhere.’
Snorting, Katsuki takes a picture of his shoes and sends it to Shouto. They’re civilian grade work boots, mud and clay brown with the ugly tan and black striped shoelaces. Shouto /hates/ these shoes.
He thinks they’re impractical, and it’ll distract him long enough to get his mind off quitting.

Katsuki knows he’ll never ACTUALLY quit, but sometimes Shouto just needs to whine like a child.
He can’t do whine at Deku because the guy always think Shouto is serious and starts trying to become a Knight in Shining armor. He reminds Shouto why he’s a hero in the first place through n inspired speech. They, him and his sidekicks, have the speech memorized at this point.
They’re terrible people, but they’re great heroes. So great in fact that Katsuki is still trying to figure out why Deku wants to add /another/ hero to their agency. They’ve done so well with just the three of them as the star players. What’s so great about this new guy?
Checking his watch, Katsuki sighs. Deku had texted him that the Hero would arrive at 5:30 on the dot.

It’s 6:28.

His phone buzzes in his hand and he looks back to see the wall of text Shouto has sent him. Near the bottom are several ellipses, and then...
‘I sometimes wonder why we aren’t dating.’

He doesn’t respond. They both know why they aren’t dating. He’s got green hair and freckles and a heart so big it could make the ocean jealous.
His thumbs hover over the keyboard, ready to respond even though his mind is blank, when a hand startles him by patting hard on his shoulder.
“Bakugo!” A voice like sunshine bursts inside Katsuki’s skull and he drops his phone and whips around. “Oh man! I’m so glad Midoriya sent you! It’s been so long!”
Eijiro Kirishima stands there, grinning with those familiar sharp teeth and dimples, faded red hair slack and curled around his ears with sleep in his eyes.
He’s wearing a gray, faded ‘Red Riot’ tank top that shows off how much /thicker/ his arms have gotten, and blue cargo shorts that look awful on him but fuck do they put his calves on display.
There’s also a bag slung over his shoulder and his boots are unlaced on his right foot, but he looks the same. And yet different.
He’s got a darker tan and is wearing a thick black cord that dips into the top of his tank top, but he’s still Kirishima. Still smiling with those sweet laugh lines and huge hands.

Katsuki can’t breathe.
“Eiji.” He doesn’t know how he says it because his chest is on fire and his throat is dry. He’s going to drop through the floor and die. He’s going to come back a ghost and break Deku’s kneecaps. “You’re our new hero?” The hope in his voice is embarrassing.
Kirishima smiles, but shakes his head no. Like that makes any sense!

“Nah, I’m your new Hero’s sidekick!” He bumps his fists together and scrunches his nose. “He’s in the bathroom, I can’t wait to introduce you!”
Katsuki lets his jaw drop open, then lets the rage fill him.

“You’re a SIDEKICK?” He sounds… horrible, honestly. “What the fuck Eiji?” He pushes to his feet and his photo clatters to the floor. Cursing, he bends down to snatch it up.

“It’s not a big deal-”
“-It fucking is!” Katsuki corrects him because shit, they went to school specifically FOR this shit! They were in the HERO course, not the SIDEKICK course!
“Bakugo.” The fact he’s reverted to his last name makes Katsuki sick to his stomach. Kirishima hadn’t called him ‘Bakugo’ since their second year of high school.
Any fight that had been surging in him withers. He feels like a stiff breeze might knock him over, and when his phone buzzes in his hand he has to drag him eyes away from Kirishima’s frown to look at the screen.
‘Ember says you won’t date me because I’m uggu wuggu? What does that mean?!?’

Katsuki closes his eyes and bites his lip, trying not to laugh. God damn it.
“Eijiro! There you are!” Katsuki shoves his phone into his pocket and looks up to see a blond man who is almost as tall as Todoroki, but twice as broad. His hair is pulled up in a top bun, the sides shaved except for the sideburns, which are fluffy and fall over his ears.
Katsuki notices the crooked hook to his nose, the shape made by one too many punches taken. The snake bite piercings in his bottom lip are bright red and twinkle in the shitty lights overhead.
One arm drapes over Kirishima’s shoulders, a soft smile on his face as he leans in to kiss Kirishima’s cheek. When he talks, Katsuki can see sharp teeth. They glint like the snake bites.
The air feels too hot for the guys turtleneck and long sleeves. He’s also wearing sweatpants, but that could be for comfort of the flight.
“Don’t be gross.” Kirishima sounds fond when he pushes the other man gently. He doesn’t shove him off though. “Bakugo, this is Bruiser, Bruiser, this is-”
“-Ground Zero.” Katsuki states. “Deku didn’t say there’d be two of you. Yuki can’t carry three.” He pulls out his phone and starts texting for a car to be sent up. “Is this all you have? I need to know where to send it if there’s more.”
“Uhh, Yuki? I thought it was just Ground Zero picking us up?” Bruiser asks, hand brushing against his undercut.
“This is all we took on the plane, we sent our other stuff ahead of time. Midoriya already let us know it arrived.” Kirishima says cheerfully. “I can’t believe you still have Yuki, I swore you’d have crashed her by now.”
Katsuki snorts. “Fuck you.” He shrugs both shoulder. “You two can take the car back by yourself. I’m going ahead.” He stuffs his phone back into his pocket. “Welcome to the agency, I guess.” He nods at Bruiser and turns heel to walk away.
“Ah, Bakugo, wait!” Kirishima rushes the few steps he needs to get to him and drops his bag to the ground. Before Katsuki can ask what he wants, thick arms wrap around his waist in a hug, a chin resting on his shoulder.
Katsuki sucks in a sharp breath, lungs filling with the same sharp charcoal smell that’s always been so uniquely Kirishima. He’d almost forgotten that smell.

A warm hand rests on his stomach as Kirishima hugs him, large and prominent in Katsuki’s daydreams.
“I missed you, bro! It’s good to see you.” Kirishima pulls away and Katsuki feels a pit open up in his stomach. He can’t do this right now.
“The car will be under my name.” He rasps. “See you at the agency.” He doesn’t run away, but it’s a close thing. He CAN’T deal with this kind of upheaval right now.

_*_*_
_*_*_

( NSFW Section Ahead )

Instead of going back to the agency right away, Katsuki heads to his house and pulls into the garage with a groan.
His helmet gets ripped off and hung from the handlebars. Katsuki lets out a breath and rolls his hips forward on the seat once, the friction is amazing.
He still feels Kirishima’s hand on his stomach, still smells him on his clothes, still hears his voice right against the shell of his ear. Katsuki’s legs feel like jello as he throws them over his bike and wobbles up the steps.
The garage door folds down behind him and he is grateful for it.

The lights are still off inside his house, but that’s fine. He won’t be here long if he can help it, he just needs… well.
This wouldn’t be the first time he’d gone home during a break just to jerk off. It might make him a little tired at first, but a cold shower and a cup of coffee fix that every time.

He stumbles into his bedroom and starts stripping, heedless of where his clothes end up.
His boxers come away wet and heavy, and he drops them to the floor before falling chest first onto the bed. Maybe he should grab a toy?

Nah, too impatient for that. His hand worms under his hip so his fingers can slide through his pubic hair.
With a bit of shifting, he reaches further down until he’s knuckle deep in dripping wet folds. He isn’t fingering himself for this quickie, he knows from experience that if he does it’ll just make him want a toy or a real cock, and THAT will make him late getting back.
The smell of his arousal is thick in the air and he has to shut his eyes as he soaks his fingers. His whine is loud in the quiet of his bedroom, but who cares? A frustrated noise escapes his lips before he’s shifting to squeeze his dick between forefinger and thumb.
Squeezing gives way to rubbing the underside with three fingers pretty fast, his hips pressing down into the bed as he buries his face in the fabric and groans.
God, Kirishima’s hands used to lift his hips up like he weighed nothing and rub at his dick until Katsuki would be a screaming, trembling mess. He missed the days of multiple orgasms with a partner, his thighs drenched and the bed sheets ruined for the night.
His own hand picks up the pace and he turns his head to the side so he can gasp. The sheets twist beneath him, threatening to suck into his open, panting mouth as he grinds down on his fingers and squirms his legs.
His other hand is thrown out above him, clenching tight in the covers that are falling off the bed.

It’s been a /while/ since he’s had a face down orgasm, but he builds up to it. Kirishima used to wake him up just to fuck him like this, still face down and drowsy on the bed.
Katsuki’s thoughts stick on the memory of that thick cock thrusting into him so hard he slid on the bed sheets.

When he cums it’s not a surprise, but it does bring an unsatisfied whine from the depths of his chest. He slumps into the bed, sweaty and gasping for air.
His fingers lazily rub his dick while the numb feeling of orgasm fades away.

Now he just feels sweaty and sticky.

Maybe a little ashamed?
… nah. He had that dick fucking him six ways to Sunday LONG before Bruiser did, IF they’re even fucking. He’s not ashamed. And he’s certainly not jealous…

Nope… no jealousy in sight.

… he just needs a shower.

( End NSFW Section )

_*_*_
_*_*_

As soon as Katsuki shows up to the agency parking garage, relaxed and sated from orgasm, he sees Shouto walking toward the elevator with what, on him, is a scowl. Shouto hasn’t finished his full patrol yet, Katsuki can tell by the time on his watch, but he looks /done/.
The guy is /covered/ in yellow dust and smears of what look like green paint from tiny hand prints all over his legs. His left boot is also entirely covered in pink, chunky glitter.
Shouto waits for Katsuki by the elevator doors and tugs his hero suit away from his crotch. When he doesm yellow dust puffs into the air. Katsuki takes his time to walk up to him, and when he does he taps the zipper of his own jacket.
Shouto scowls and reaches up to unzip himself from his suit top.

“If another person tries to attack an elementary school, I’m going to /let/ them. See how /they/ like getting attacked by preteens. They all know how to take care of themselves I swear to god.”
He looks ready to set himself on fire when his harness catches on his jacket. “Children are scarier than the League ever was.” Katsuki help him free himself, and they stand there with Shouto, sweaty and topless, bundling up his hero top.
Katsuki tuts. “Bet you I can beat you for worst day ever.” The elevator dings and they clamber in together.

“Bet you fucking can’t.” Shouto lifts up the right side of his hair and streamers fall out… as well as a rubber duck? “I’ve been hit by eight different quirks today.”
“Kirishima’s back in Japan.” Katsuki states as he watches the duck roll across the floor. “And he’s our new Hero’s sidekick.”

Shouto tenses, looking at Katsuki with wide, confused eyes. “I-What? Midoriya couldn’t have kno-”
“He knew.” Katsuki tries not to clench his fists. “Kirishima said they /talked./” He lets out a slow breath as the elevator stops on his floor and the doors slide open. He steps out, meaning to stop the conversation there.
But Shouto follows him out, just a step behind and voice a low whisper. “He… Midoriya /wouldn’t/ be trying to set you two up… not twice. He knows you both split up, he wouldn’t try to do that to you.” Shouto reaches out and touches Katsuki’s elbow.
“He /wouldn’t/, you know he cares about you. He… he wouldn’t do that to you after everything we’ve been through.”

When Katsuki stops outside his door, he makes a point to catch Shouto’s eye. They stand in silence for a moment before Shouto swears colorfully.
“Let me talk to him before you start yelling?” Shouto asks, hand sliding down to slip into Katsuki’s.

“I won’t yell.” Katsuki squeezes Shouto’s hand once, then steps into his office. “Please put clothes on, you’re distracting me with your tits pierced like that.”
“You /will/ yell.” Shouto deftly ignores the second part of his statement. “If only because Midoriya kept the truth from you.” He looks like he’s about to step inside with Katsuki, but he doesn’t. “I… is it going to get weird? Do I need to step in?”
He seems genuinely worried as Katsuki sits down and leans back in his chair.

“Probably going to be weird, but when has that ever stopped us before?” He smirks when Shouto visibly relaxes. “Aren’t you supposed to be on patrol?”
“Sector clean up.” Now Shouto covers his chest, and piercings, with his ruined top. “Whole street looks like a Saturday Morning Cartoon blew up on it. I can’t go back out until the quirk reversal team calls.”
He shrugs one shoulder, but Katsuki can tell he’s secretly loving this small breather. “After I shower, will you tell me about the new Hero?”
Katsuki snorts. “Other than the fact his name is Bruiser and he’s wearing a turtleneck in the middle of Summer, you know as much as I do.” Shouto does his imitation of a scowl once again. “Yeah, Deku really dropped the ball today, didn’t he?”
“I’m going to go talk to him.” Shouto leaves without another word and Katsuki rolls his eyes. He doesn’t have to yell at Deku today. Shouto’s going to give him a single disapproving look and that’ll have him crying his eyes out and begging them both for forgiveness.
They’ve been here before, they’ll be here again. He’s not sure how they get any work done like this.

A sudden, deep yawn bubbles up from his chest and he rubs at his eyes.
He’s been on standby for two weeks after he nearly broke his leg getting civilians out of a collapsing car park. Since then Katsuki’s been waiting for anyone who might need him to call in, but so far his phone and pager have been /silent./
He leans back in his chair and picks up his tablet from the desk, then loads up a puzzle game to pass the time. He /could/ watch porn, but Deku gets so embarrassed by casually critiquing actors that it isn’t fun anymore if he barges in.
Four levels in his game later and there’s a soft, rhythmic knock at his doorway. He glances up to see lava skin and charcoal hair peering into the office.

“Ember.” His eyes glance back at the game.
“Hi boss,” she sounds too calm and it instantly sets off alarms in Katsuki’s head. “I brought you a coffee.” From just beyond the doorway, she pulls out a paper cup caddy.
“And I wanted to let you know that I delegated showing the new Hero around to Base Drop, so I’m free if you need me for anything!” There’s a chipperness to her voice that makes Katsuki sigh and pause his game.
“What happened?” He demands while holding out a hand for his coffee. She flinches, but hurries inside. His coffee has cinnamon and chili flakes, he can smell them from here before the cup even touches his hand. “You went down the block to get these.”
“Yes Sir.” She sets the caddy down and tugs at the end of her gloves. “And I… it’s nothing bad!” Katsuki puts his tablet down and pries off the lid of his coffee. There’s also chocolate shavings.

“Uh huh.” He doesn’t believe her.
“Nobody was hurt, just startled.” She shrinks in a little. “You know how I am around new people when they touch me without my permission. If it had been out in the field I’d have been prepared for it, but it was in the break room and he just grabbed my shoulder and-”
“Ember.” Katsuki cuts her off before she sets herself on fire again. He likes his carpet a little more than he likes his hallway. “Who did you burn?”
“I didn’t burn him!” She has the decency not to whine. “But he grabbed my shoulder and I sparked, I thought I’d burnt him, but he’s fine. Not a scorch on him, not even any red skin. But he...” Katsuki leans forward.

“He?”
“The new Hero, Picture Perfect.” Ember rubbed at her cheek. Katsuki doesn’t fight his eye roll. What a fucking horrible Hero name.
“He said I should have better control if I’m working at an agency like this. It wasn’t mean, I mean it was true, and he was really nice about it, but I… I got so used to you and Shouto that I...”
She swallows. “I threw my water at him and told him he was a dickhead for touching me without my permission.”

Katsuki has to shut his eyes and hold his breath to keep from laughing.
“/Don’t!/” Ember does whine this time.
“I’m going to get in trouble with Deku! He wanted us to make a good first impression and I /ruined/ it because he was so nice that it sounded fake! You /always/ tell us not to put up with fake people and I didn’t know who he was at first and then—Stop laughing!”
Katsuki can’t keep in his merth, his chest aches as his laugh echoes around the room. His sides are going to get a stitch.
“Boss!” Ember whines again, but she’s smiling. “Please don’t fire me.” Katsuki snorts and waves away her concern, still chuckling before he sips at his coffee.
It takes a few minutes, in which Ember picks up her own coffee and sips at it too, before Katsuki has himself under control.

He lets out a long sigh, cinnamon and chocolate on his tongue. Heat settles in his throat and he leans back in his chair.
“So the Hero’s called /Picture Perfect?/” He asks, and Ember sits on the corner of his desk and nods. Her shorts keep her from igniting anything, but they make that squishy spandex sound. “How pretentious.”
“Sir, with all do respect?” Ember waits for him to nod. “Ground Zero isn’t any better.” He snorts at her and shakes his head, the two of them toasting with their cups of coffee.
A knock at the door makes Katsuki look up in confusion. Ember normally leaves it open, but she closed it on her way in.

“It’s open.” He states, eyebrow raised at Ember, who shrugs.
The door pushes open and in walks /Picture Perfect/ in his hero suit. Or, Katsuki /assumes/ it’s a hero suit.
It honestly just looks like cargo shorts covered in pockets, utility boots, very short gauntlets, and a scarf that’s wrapped around his neck and pectorals like a bikini top.

That’s not really what has Katsuki’s focus though.
It’s all the tattoos that are moving across his skin, from his neck down to his ankles. The dude is /covered/ in moving ink, images ranging from flowers to sharks to… is that a defibrillator?
There’s also a big pot of ink on his hip with a fluttering feather quill.

“Ground Zero!” His voice is excited as he steps into the office. “Deku told me to come see you, he said we’re going to have a press conference to announce my debut!”
Katsuki groans. “He couldn’t even let you /sleep/ first? You haven’t even been here two hours, what’s wrong with that fucker?” He tugs at his hair and then shakes his head. “Ember, get one of my grenades and throw it inside of Deku’s office.”
“Respectfully, Sir, suck on a rotten egg.” Ember says it cheerfully. He snorts at her and pushes to his feet.
“I need to get my press suit on, get out you brat.” Katsuki pats her shoulder and she hops off his desk. “Go make sure Icy Hot isn’t contemplating strangling Deku.” She gives him a pointed look and he shrugs. “He’s had a rough day, look into ordering him some soba or something.”
She nods and hurries out, not looking at Picture Perfect as she passes him.

Katsuki shuts his tablet off, then heads to the wall where he keeps his press suit. It folds out after he tugs a book off the shelf and a small wardrobe slides into place.
When Picture Perfect doesn’t move from the doorway, Katsuki turns to him and raises an eyebrow.

“Can I fucking help you?” He pulls his shirt out from his waistband and kicks off his boots.
“Oh! Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry!” Bruiser’s face flushes as he scrambles to the door. “I’ll wait outside with my sidekick!” He sounds thoroughly embarrassed as he reaches the door and snaps it shut. Katsuki groans and tugs his shirt off completely.
So Kirishima wouldn’t even stick his head through the door to say hello?

What a disaster this is going to be.

And what a bitch move by Kirishima.

_*_*_
_*_*_

Katsuki’s press suit is a modified version of his Hero suit that looks stylish, but can also handle his quirk if things go wrong. It’s a black undershirt and jacket, orange cross suspenders, and his regular green utility belt.
His pants stay the same. He finishes changing and then looks in the mirror, shaking his head until his hair puffs up to its natural dandelion floof.
For a brief, tired moment, he remembers rough hands pulling his hair as he was fucked in front of a mirror similar to this one. Only that had been back in a tiny apartment years ago with hot breath on his neck and a name pouring from his lips with a devoted reverence.
Sighing, Katsuki walks back to his desk and picks up his coffee to clear his head. He downs half of it before setting the cup back on the desk. He doesn’t have time to think like that, he has to focus on this press conference.
But still… it’s been too long since he’s had someone touch him the way he wants.

He looks at himself in his mirror and sneers, flashing his best ‘Fuck off’ smile.
Little things like this get him through the day. He holds up a hand and lets off a few tiny explosions in his palm, then sighs and walks to the door. When he opens it, Bruiser throws himself forward with a yelp to keep from falling into Katsuki’s office.
Sighing, Katsuki rolls his eyes as the other man laughs and straightens up.

“Dude, I /told you/ not to lean against the door.” Kirishima’s voice is scolding but playful.
Katsuki turns to him and sees he’s in a red button up and slacks, dressed up but with the air of exhaustion one gets from travel.

Part of Katsuki is sad that he doesn’t get to see Kirishima in his Hero outfit.
He wonders if it’s changed at all over these years, but that part of him is overshadowed by his bitter, petty part.
“Sorry about that, I got distracted.” Bruiser, or Picture Perfect, adjusts his scarf and turns a smile full of sharp teeth at Katsuki. He looks eager. “Deku said you’d show us where to go?”
“Deku’s going to get a boot up his ass for acting like he’s the only one that owns this agency.” Katsuki states before shutting his office door behind him. “This way.”
He turns down the hall and Kirishima keeps pace, falling beside Katsuki like he hadn’t spent years /ghosting/ him. Picture Perfect falls into step on his other side.
“Oh, don’t be mad at Deku. I’m sure it’s just stress.” Bruiser says it with good intentions, but it still sounds condescending to Katsuki. While well meaning, he doesn’t try to fight his sneer.

“I’ve known him my entire life, I know what he’s doing.” He argues.
Kirishima laughs and scrunches his nose, one hand coming up to tuck faded curls behind his ear. “Don’t mind him Bruiser, Bakugo’s always been a grouch when he doesn’t get his way.”
Katsuki stops in his tracks and turns his sneer on Kirishima. Something in him boils, clawing at his chest despite the fantasies he’d had not even an hour ago of Kirishima bending him over and fucking him blind with pleasure.
“/Don’t/,” he warns, “you don’t know the first thing about me. Not anymore.” He turns away from them both and walks up to the elevator. They scramble after him in tense silence as they head to the top floor.
Once the doors open, Katsuki walks into a group of sidekicks that cheer as he holds up a fist.

“Where’s Deku?” He shouts. Several of the sidekicks snicker, a few hurrying away in giggles. Ember walks up and she’s dragging Shouto with her by the hand.
His blue suit looks perfect, even if he looks rumpled.

“Katsuki.” Shouto sighs heavily, pushing his hair back with one hand. “They won’t let me count the Conference as patrol hours, I still have to go out there.”
Katsuki rolls his eyes, the arm he had raised falling to the side in open invitation. Shouto takes a few steps forward and drops his head to Katsuki’s shoulder. Ember lets him go while Katsuki rubs his back.
“I’m coming over to your place after work because it’s closer.” Shouto mutters.
Ember jumps into the conversation with a bounce on her heels. “Deku’s helping set up press chairs.” Her body crackles and she holds out a water bottle from her thigh holster, which Katsuki takes.
“Ingenium and Uravity will be arriving shortly from their agency, along with Charge Bolt and Mimic from Present Mic’s.” She glances black and flames trickle across her shoulders. She’s no longer relaxed, but instead tense and at the ready.
Katsuki follows her gaze and sees Picture Perfect wave sheepishly at her. He looks more embarrassed than anything else, which is funny on someone his size. Glancing to the side, he sees Kirishima’s gaze glued, wide eyed, to where Shouto is slumped to Katsuki’s shoulder.
There’s something in that look, but Katsuki doesn’t want to dig into it. He wants to stay petty for a little while longer, not entertain any ideas that might slip through his mind about Kirishima still liking him.

They broke up.

He’s moved on.

...
He looks away and uses his teeth to untwist the water bottle cap, which makes Ember scrunch her nose in disgust. She still holds out her hand to him and he releases the cap into her palm.

“Did you tell Charge Bolt who’s here?” He asks her. She flashes him a look of innocence.
“Who would that be?” She pockets the bottle cap. One of her fingers touches her cheek and she winks.
“Good girl. Show them backstage.” He nods over to Picture Perfect and Kirishima. “Also, because I feel like he hasn’t been useful enough today, have Base Drop record the crowd. Get our friends good seats.”
“Yes Sir!” She turns and shouts into the crowd. “Base!” Her voice drops several octaves and the sidekicks don’t even flinch when a skinny twig of a man stumbles over to her. He’s all limbs and awkward body language. “We’ve got work to do, can you help me?”
Her voice is sugar honey again, that soft tentative precious air she’s known for. Katsuki lets them weave into the crowd with Kirishima and Bruiser trailing after them before he guides Shouto to the stage room.
They enter in through the side door and see Deku zipping around in a green blur as he sets chairs down. Katsuki pushes Shouto up the to the stage and into his designated seat before forcing the water bottle into his hands.
Shouto doesn’t fight him, just slumps and takes small sips.

Katsuki goes up to the podium and taps the mic, listening to the sound bounce around the room before he leans forward.
“Deku.” When the green blur settles and Deku looks up at Katsuki with a sheepish grin, he has to fight not to throw the podium at him. “We need to talk. /Now./” Going to his designated chair, Katsuki waits for Deku to get up to the stage before he scowls at him.
“Hi Kacchan.” Deku sounds ashamed. “I’m sorry, I should have told you! I know! But I was getting a headache from the blood loss and it really just slipped my mind! I know I should have told you but-”
“Stop.” Shouto states. “How long have you been in contact with Kirishima?” Katsuki raises an eyebrow and sees a bit of fire in Shouto’s eyes.
“Only since last week!” Deku says, fiddling with his tie. “When Picture Perfect bought him up, we’d been talking to him for months and he’d mentioned his sidekick tons of times, but never said his name or anything. "
"He asked if he could bring him and I said I’d think about it, and then he told me who he was and I-I missed him! So I said yes and didn’t even think-I was just so excited to see him and-”
“Fucks sake.” Katsuki groans, head thrown back. “You’re an idiot. A well meaning, innocent /idiot./” He sits back up and sighs.
Deku makes this pitiful sound in the back of his throat. “Is… did I fuck up?” He asks, eyes brimming with tears.
“I just… I thought if we had another Hero that Shouto could rest for a while, take a vacation or something. And there’s been that big push to bring on International Hero’s, even if they’re only temporary.”
Shouto and Katsuki share a look and sigh at the same time.

God. Damn it.

“You’re in trouble.” Katsuki grumbles.

“A little bit of trouble.” Shouto pinches his fingers together. “But not enough that it matters.”

“No it’s enough.”

“Hush.”
“Don’t pull this shit without /consulting/ us first!” Katsuki /would/ throw something at him, but he doesn’t have anything on hand. Also the chairs are bolted to the floor after the first three interviews they did all those years ago.
Deku nods and sniffles, then swallows thickly. “I’m sorry.” He whispers.

“Oh my /god./” Katsuki gets up at the same time as Shouto and the two of them bring their idiot in for a hug. Katsuki ruins Deku’s already ruined hair.
He’s angry, but that will have to wait. He can yell and maybe throw a punch later, but they’re professionals right now.

They can handle this little bump in the road, they’re a team for a reason. The Top Three. The Triple Threat.
“You didn’t tell Pikachu that Kirishima is back, did you?” Katsuki asks. “Because I am looking /forward/ to that.”

“Oh /no./” Deku tries to shrink in on himself as realization hits him, but Shouto has him locked in place. “I have to tell /everyone!/ I forgot, I-”
“Yeah, we needed a new Hero on board.” Shouto decides. “The only one of us who isn’t ready to drop dead from overwork is Katsuki.” He pokes him in the ribs. “Not all of us have adrenaline for blood.”

“Shut the fuck up.” Katsuki grins before pushing the both of them away.

_*_*_
_*_*_

“We’d like to introduce you to our newest Agency Hero, all the way from Wales, please give a warm welcome to Picture Perfect.” Deku smiles as the hero walks through the curtain and gets gentle applause from the press and the small smattering of Hero’s in the crowd.
“And let’s not forget his sidekick, please join me in welcoming home our very own /Red Riot!/”

The whole room goes quiet as Kirishima steps out from behind the curtain.
Katsuki’s head whips around to the crowd just in time to see Denki Kaminari stand up so fast he kicks his chair to the floor. He has time to cover his ears as Kaminari screams in delight and peeks a few microphones. There’s going to be plenty of unusable audio tonight.
“Bro! That’s my bro!” Denki’s elated laughter shatters the quiet. People are screaming and whooping in delight as Kirishima flushes even darker red, walking up to stand beside Picture Perfect. The Hero laughs, patting Kirishima on the shoulder and guiding him to the podium.
Katsuki takes his hands off his ears to hear Bruiser say, “They miss you, say hello. I can address the public at any time, go on.” It’s so soft and endearing. It shakes something in Katsuki’s chest and he has to bite the inside of his cheek not to scowl.
Beside him, Shouto reaches under the table to grab Katsuki’s hand and squeeze. Right, this is good, this is grounding. He’s over this.
Kirishima stands at the podium and shifts awkwardly from foot to foot.
“Umm… hi guys?” Someone wolf whistles in the crowd, and Katsuki’s /positive/ it’s Round Cheeks. He can see her pink suit jacket and navy blazer from here. Kirishima laughs, teeth glinting on the monitor facing them. “It’s good to be /home./”

_*_*_
_*_*_

The five of them field various, generic questions and play the public image game until Katsuki starts to get antsy. His foot starts bouncing under the table and Bruiser tries to ask if he’s okay, but is cut off when Deku smoothly wraps things up with the press.
The invited Hero’s are directed to another room while press and film are escorted towards the public elevators by various sidekicks.
Once the five are backstage, there’s only a few seconds to breathe and steady themselves before Kaminari is barreling through the doors and right into Kirishima’s arms. He’s a sobbing /mess,/ unable to get out any real words, but that doesn’t matter.
Kirishima’s crying just as hard as he is and there’s going to be /no/ separating the two for a /long/ while.
Bruiser, who is holding a glass of champagne that Deku gave him, blinks in shock as he watches Kirishima and Kaminari hold a conversation that’s entirely had via blubbering. He opens his mouth to ask, but Deku pats his shoulder.
“Not worth it my friend, just let them have this. They go way back.” Deku says, soft and reassuring. “Come say hi to Tenya and Uraraka before they go back on patrol, I think you’ll like them.”
Katsuki steers clear of the Do Good Duo and instead sticks to the wall with Shouto, who is leaning against his side as they share a water bottle.
Mimic, also known as Hitoshi Shinsou, walks over to them with a raised eyebrow and hooks a thumb at Kirishima and Kaminari across the room.
“Pray tell, what, may I ask, the fuck?” Hitoshi asks. “Why didn’t you guys tell me he was coming back? I have to go home with him like that, what gives?”

Both Katsuki and Shouto shrug.
“We didn’t even know he was back in Japan until Katsuki was picking him up from the airport today.” Shouto closes his eyes and rubs at his temples. “I haven’t had a moment alone to talk to him since he got back. Have you?” He looks over to Katsuki, who shakes his head no.
“I’m not sure I /want/ to talk to him.” He admits with a shrug.

“He ghosted you, didn’t he?” Hitoshi crosses his arms and narrows his eyes at Kirishima’s back. “He /better/ talk to you, if only so he can explain what the fuck his game is.”
Katsuki snorts and reaches out to pat Hitoshi’s arm. “It’s sweet that you pretend to care.”

“I /do/ care.” Hitoshi argues. “Honorary Bakusquad, I /have/ to care. We come when you call.”
“Just because you fuck Kaminari on the regular doesn’t make you Bakusquad.” Shouto says, but he’s smirking.
“Might as well qualify him, he does actually shows up when I call.” Katsuki shurgs as he says it. Shouto huffs, but relents. “Speaking of, I’m going to head home before Pikachu contacts the rest of the ‘Squad’ and they descend upon the building. I don’t need that today.”
Shouto pouts. “Can I still come over after my shift?”

“Yeah, you still have your spare key right?”

Hitoshi groans. “/God./ Are you two a couple yet?” He rubs at the bridge of his nose. “Because this is honestly /exhausting./”
Katsuki doesn’t qualify that with a response. Instead he looks away and sees Kirishima and Kaminari heading toward their little group. They’ve stopped crying, but they’re still glued at the hip.

Before Katsuki can turn away, Kirishima looks up and catches his gaze.
Once again, there’s something /there,/ a look Katsuki hasn’t seen in years that sends something hot and sticky down his spine.

Kirishima’s eyes flick over to Shouto and his smile turns into a frown.
“Yeah, I’m out.” Katsuki decides before the two can get within earshot. “Just knock if you plan on crawling into bed this time.” He plants a quick, petty kiss to Shouto’s cheek, who accept it at face value and goes back to arguing with Hitoshi about why they /aren’t a couple./
He can feel the atmosphere thicken the closer Kirishima gets.

But none of Katsuki’s friends try to stop him as he slips away and hurries out of the conference room. He makes it to the private garage elevator before tugging at his hair, waiting for the car to get to the top.
Is he being a petty bitch?

Yes. Absolutely.

Does Kirishima deserve that?

… you know what? Also yes!
They haven’t seen each other since Katsuki was /nineteen,/ and before that all of their friends had seen them as this unbreakable /power couple./
But then they’d split up and Kirishima had just… fucking /vanished./ He didn’t talk to anyone, not just Katsuki. So yeah, Katsuki is bitter over it. He’d lost his best fucking friend and he /still/ has no idea /why./
Eventually he’ll sit down with Kirishima and they’ll talk things out. But eventually isn’t now. If they try to talk to one another right now, Katsuki will scream and try to hit him.
He’s gotten a lot better about his temper, but his fuse is still short. Longer than it used to be, but still /short./
He gets into the elevator and groans. Maybe tomorrow he’ll actually have work to do. He misses being on Patrol, misses running through the streets with his gaggle of sidekicks. Hell, he even misses helping old ladies with their produce.
He’s just… /frustrated./ There’s only one cure for that he wants.

_*_*_
_*_*_

When he gets home and makes sure his bike is stored properly, Katsuki goes right to his toy chest. Shouto may or may not /actually/ come over tonight, so if Katsuki’s going to work out his frustration, it’s best to do it /now./
It doesn’t really matter that he’s gotten off once today, he can go several times if he really wants to.

He strips down in his bedroom and pulls out one of his thicker toys from its container.
It’s marbled black and orange, bought on sale from a fancy site that makes custom dildos with suction cups. He’s put this one to good use several times before, so it’s one of his favorites. He also gets out the toy cleaner and uses it as he walks into his master bathroom.
The toy also gets a good rinse and then the claw foot tub gets inspected.

It’s clean, obviously, he’s pretty meticulous about that, but it’s always better to check.
He sticks the toy securely to the bottom of the tub and turns on the faucet. Water pools around the drain and Katsuki leaves it to warm up while he walks over to the cabinet and pulls out a towel.
While there, he also pulls out one of his fluffier bath mats and sets it in front of the tub.

He should probably shower first, but he’s too anxious to stand around right now, he’d start pacing.
Instead of dwelling on those thoughts, Katsuki gathers the stopper and tests the water temperature, then climbs into the tub. The stopper drops down and pops into place as Katsuki kneels over the toy with a sigh.
Truth be told, he’s probably too angry for this, especially since his spank bank material is mostly Kirishima.
Still, his fingers slide down his pelvis and over his cock. He could have put on some porn or something, but it’s so hard to find things that don’t make him feel… gross.

Kirishima never made him feel gross.
“Fuck, think about literally /anyone/ other than him right now.” Katsuki mutters it to himself as his fingers slide lower to spread his folds apart.
He’s not as wet as he needs to be to sink down on his toy, not as relaxed as his body desires, but he’s also too lazy to go and get lube.

Katsuki has a vivid imagination, he’s done this before. He can think about someone else… anyone else, and get wet enough to ease the toy in.
His mind is stuck on red hair and sharp teeth sinking into the flesh between his neck and shoulder though. Of hardened hands squeezing his hips tight while a thick cock trusts into him from behind. He thinks of a husky, sex drunk voice against his skin, babbling encouragements.
‘Come on Kats, you can do it, so close baby, I feel you getting tight. Don’t even gotta touch your dick, you’re so good, come on baby, cum on my cock.’
Katsuki swallows and tries to shake the thoughts out of his head. Despite how wet they’re making him, he knows they’re /inappropriate./

Besides, Kirishima has Bruiser and Katsuki isn’t a homewrecker. And even if they aren’t a couple, Kirishima /left./ He has to remember that.
Still, his mind wanders down a dangerous path as his fingers rub against his cock. He can vividly remember Kirishima laying face down on their bed in nothing but his boxers, Katsuki straddling his hips while he rubbed his then boyfriends shoulders.
‘Hey, Katsuki?’ He remembers how bashful Kirishima had sounded, ‘Can we... get your strap out? So I can ride you, maybe? If you want?’
Katsuki whimpers, one hand covering his face while two fingers sink into his cunt instead of rubbing his cock. He’s certainty wet /now,/ and the water pooling around his calves is making him tremble.
That, or maybe it’s the burn as he spreads his fingers and scissors himself quickly. As he’s rocking back and forth, Katsuki presses his cock into his palm and whimpers.
He grinds into the pleasure and quickly grabs the side of the tub instead of his face. He likes this flood of endorphins.

But he also misses being touched. Misses thick fingers and a clever tongue.
Maybe he isn’t stretched enough, but he’s impatient and honestly, he /likes/ the burn. He slips his fingers out, pushes the folds aside, and closes his eyes as he lines himself up until he can feel the firm plastic pushing against his cunt.
The hand on the tub quickly grabs the shaft of the toy to keep it steady as he sinks down, feeling that stretch as his breath hitches.
A toy isn’t the same as the real thing, it’s not as warm as a cock and certainly isn’t connected to a body that will wrap arms around him and tell him how good he’s doing.
How well he’s taking it, how hot he looks, thighs spread apart as he lowers himself to sit on a toy in his slowly filling bathtub.
/Fuck./ Is an orgasm even worth it at this point if his mind is only full of a man he’s angry at? As hot as this is, as /good/ as it feels, thinking about Kirishima, about /Eijiro,/ it’s just making him /sad./
The toy inside him is thick and firm, and when he’s seated he stares out into the rest of his bathroom as if searching for an okay. Orgasms aren’t supposed to be frustrating, he’s the master of quickies! He’s supposed to be moaning shamelessly, not stuck in his head.
Just… think of something else, focus on the /pleasure./
Katsuki shuts his eyes and Shouto comes to mind, laughing in swim trunks at the beach as he climbs out of the water. He’s soaking wet, the water dripping off his skin.
His tongue darts out to lick his lips as he walks closer to Katsuki with his hands outstretched, he can see the shape of his cock through his trunks and he swallows. Shouto’s always had a nice cock, not very big, but certainly /pretty./
He thinks of Deku for a split second, naked in the locker room under the showers and looking around in confusion for his body wash. Covered in scars and cock half hard under the warm spray.

His eyes snap open.
“We /don’t/ go there. Stop it.” Katsuki reminds himself aloud. Shouto is toeing a line, but /Deku/ is crossing it.
Kirishima pops back into his head like a fucking plague. He’s laying spread out, freshly fucked on their couch and looking up at Katsuki with adoring eyes.
‘God, I love you so much.’ The thought of Kirishima’s laughter and sweet smile made Katsuki whimper as he lifts up until just the head of the toy is at his rim. He drops back down a little harder than intended and gasps.
It smarts, but it’s fine. He likes that, that bright pain that morphs into pleasure. So what if he’s a little bit of a masochist?
‘I love you.’ Another roll of his hips, maybe he can get a better angle this time. ‘I love you.’ His thighs burn but he keeps going, letting himself slide up and down on his toy like this isn’t a bad idea. He’s practically bouncing at this point.
‘I love you.’ He leans forward, panting and whining while he grips tighter at the sides of the tub. ‘I love you.’
“Eiji!” He calls out as an orgasm surprises him, his cock untouched and his thighs shaking. Katsuki’s confused at first, and then /ashamed./ “Oh fuck.” He slumps and the toy sinks in further, causing him to whine.
He can’t stay like this, he has to be able to walk tomorrow, but the temptation…

He pulls himself off the toy and sits behind it in the tub. He reaches up and rubs at a cheek, realizing that at some point he’d started crying.
“God damn it.” His fist smacks hard into the tub and the thud echoes in the tilted bathroom. “/Fuck/ you Kirishima.” He wipes at his cheeks again and pulls up the toy, throwing it toward the sink.
It clatters on the counter as Katsuki lets himself cry in the privacy of his own bathroom. He slides further down into the tub and tries not to curl in on himself.

_*_*_
_*_*_

Eventually Katsuki climbs out of the tub and showers off before crawling into bed. He doesn’t bother with clothes, it won’t be the first time he and Shouto have slept beside one another and been naked.
Shouto doesn’t do it very often, but sometimes he can’t handle how hot clothes get. It’s harder to regulate your body temperature when you’re unconscious, so Katsuki has never shamed him for it.

Embarrassed the shit out of Deku because of it, but never shamed his best friend.
He’s buried in pillows and thick, plush blankets, dreaming of floating on the surface of a clear lake when a knock on his door frame sounds more like a gunshot in his dream.
Inhaling sharply, Katsuki sits upright and grips at his blankets, panting around the sudden sweat at his neck and palms. He doesn’t always hear the shot when hes woken suddenly, sometimes it’s gentle knocking. But when he’s stressed...
“S’just me.” Shouto sounds far away but ready to drop. Katsuki groans loudly at him to let him know he can come in, then flops back to the bed.
“I’m naked under here.” He warns, rolling onto his side and pulling one of his various pillows to his chest. “My boxers are on the dresser though, if you wanna get ‘em.”
The door opens and Shouto shuffles in, already stripping down and throwing his clothes in heaps to the floor. After a few moments, Katsuki feels the bed dip, then a pair of boxers are dropped by his face, along with a take away bag.
“I figured you hadn’t eaten.” Shouto mutters, waiting as Katsuki tugs the fabric on beneath the covers and then digs through the bag. It takes some effort, but he gets it done.
When he lifts the edge of the blanket around his chest, Shouto climbs beneath the warmth of the duvet and spoons against Katsuki’s back.

“Had a bad night,” Katsuki admits, “and I didn’t want your dick rubbing up against my ass.”
He opens a box of cold chow mien and breaks apart his chopsticks.
Shouto snorts. “You’re the one who said you didn’t care if I got into bed naked.” His arm loops around Katuki’s chest and his cheek presses to his shoulder. “Today was fucked up though, I’ll agree with you there.”
“Ugh,” Katsuki hears the growl in his stomach, “I know.” He shifts in the bed until he’s comfortable, feeling Shouto’s ankles slide between his own. Shouto lets him eat, occasionally reaching over to steal bites of food between his fingers.
It’s comfortable and familiar, so Katsuki lets him.

When he finishes, he drops the empty containers back in the back and throws it off the bed near the door.
Shouto hums. “Should we talk about it?” His warmth is spreading across Katsuki’s skin to fill the space beneath the blankets.
“Talk about the day, or Kirishima suddenly being back?” Katsuki counters as he threads their fingers together. “You’re not so smooth. You think I didn’t catch on to what you were trying to do? Buttering me up with cold take out? I know your tactics.”
“I think he’s jealous.” Shouto decides, ignoring Katsuki’s previous statements.

Katsuki snorts. “Of /what?/” He turns, back now on the sheets as he looks up at Shouto. He’s not wearing a shirt, and probably isn’t wearing boxers, but that’s beside the point.
“Me? Us?” Shouto shrugs. “He wasn’t subtle. I caught him frowning or glaring at me any time we were together. I think he assumes we’re dating.”

“Half of /Japan/ assumes we’re dating.”
“He has no right to be upset.” Shouto frowns, then looks down at their still joined hands. “He’s dating someone… isn’t he? Are he and Bruiser a thing?”
Katsuki shrugs and squeezes their fingers together. “I don’t know, it’s not my business.” He /wants/ to know though, he just won’t admit it.

“It shouldn’t be Kirishima’s business who you’re with either.” Shouto decides with a nod.
“I’m not /with/ anybody though.” Katsuki can see the question on Shouto’s face, the way he swallows. “I’m not dating you, I know you’re hung up on Deku.”

“I’m not /hung up./” He sounds genuinely offended. “Midoriya is straight, there’s nothing to be hung up /on./”
Katsuki frowns and lets his head fall back against the pillows. “I still don’t think he’s straight.”
“He told me so himself when Hitoshi confessed to him.” Shouto counters. “He’s not… interested in guys seriously, it’s just… it’s complicated. He was testing the waters, but he hasn’t done anything since then with me and I really think it’s just… he’s straight.”
He slumps to the bed, chin on Katsuki’s shoulder as their torso’s press together. They lay in silence for a while, wrapped up in one another, but then Shouto sits up and glares at him. “Wait. You derailed the conversation didn’t you?”
“And I was so close to getting away with it.” Katsuki said with a sarcastic eye roll. “Look, there could be thousands of reasons as to why Kirishima keeps frowning at you. He might just… not approve.”
“I don’t need his approval to date you.” Shouto says defiantly.

“No, but you need /mine./” He sighs as Shouto huffs at him. “Sho, it’s not fair to you. You’re not over Deku, I don’t know if you ever will be, and-”

“You’re not over Kirishima.”
Shouto’s voice snaps through the air like the crack of a whip. He blinks, shocked by his own words, then untangles his limbs from Katsuki’s so they’re laying side by side on their backs.

Neither say anything for what feels like an eternity.
“I’m sorry.” Shouto whispers, hands curled on his chest. “I shouldn’t have said that.”
Katsuki sighs. “You… aren’t wrong though.” He rolls over and reaches out, pulling Shouto to him. Their noses brush and Katsuki closes his eyes. “I /thought/ I was. We’d gotten so busy and we never saw each other anymore, I thought… I thought we’d drifted apart, you know?"
"And then I got that offer from your dad-”

“You mean that of shit?”

“Yes. True. But I figured, with his track record that I’d be too busy to keep him happy. I was already too busy and I was just doing sidekick work. And I got swamped, the entire year I worked there I-”
“-You slept on the couch in the office my dad gave you.” Shouto sighs. “I remember, I kept having to wake you up for patrols.” He reaches up, fingers sliding through Katsuki’s hair. “I didn’t… we all thought you two broke up on good terms.”
Katsuki swallows.
“So did I? I… after we talked it out, he seemed fine. He understood, I… I thought he did. He told me about the job offer in Australia, he was so excited about it and since we weren’t dating anymore he told me he wouldn’t feel like he was dragging me down if he accepted.”
Shouto sucks in a sharp breath. “You think he was lying?”
At first, Katsuki didn’t say anything. If Shouto had asked him that question yesterday, he would have said no. Yesterday he was sure that their break up, their split, had been mutual. Yesterday he would have told Shouto that Kirishima left to further his carrier and was happy.
After seeing him today though?

“I don’t fucking know anymore.” He admits. “If he was unhappy, why didn’t he just say something? Why just… roll over like that?”
“He’s always been too nice for his own good.” Shouto whispers. “Maybe that factored in?”
Katsuki scoffed and scrubbed at his cheek. “This is dumb.” He doesn’t mind that his comes out as a whine. “I don’t want to talk about this anymore. I’m tired.” He closes his eyes, trying to make a point.
“You’re lying.” Shouto’s lips press gently to his forehead. “About being tired, I mean. I know what you’re like when you’re tired. This isn’t it.” But Katsuki can feel Shouto cuddling up to him anyways.

“Go the fuck to sleep.” He mutters, wanting this day to end.
“In a little bit.” But Shouto’s already drifting off, Katsuki can tell. “I want to talk to you.” He doesn’t say anything else, and soon enough his breathing is even and his body lax.
Katsuki imagines they’re younger and not drowning in dumb problems like this. He lets his mind ease him into sleep of simpler times and softer days.

_*_*_
_*_*_

The sun isn’t even up when Katsuki and Shouto are woken with a jolt by both of their work pagers going off simultaneously. The electronic screeching in the quiet of the bedroom makes Katsuki groan, though the thrill of getting to work again pushes him awake.
Beside him, Shouto gasps and rolls over to steady himself as ice ripples along his side. He must have been in a deep sleep, and Katsuki’s known him long enough to give him his space.
So he rolls to the other side of the bed as Shouto tries to compose himself and leaves him to it. He climbs off the mattress and fumbles on his bedside table for his pager, trembling in the temperature difference from the toasty warmth he’d abandoned.
When he looks down at the screen, he recognizes it as a number from out of their jurisdiction, one located up by the Resort actually. He sends in his code and waits for more information to be sent to his work phone, which is charging next to the pager.
While he waits, he sits on the end of his bed, feeling Shouto shuffle around in his covers. Less than a minute goes by before his phone lights up and he reads over the message with bleary eyes.
‘Natural Disaster, no villain involvement. Snow got too heavy at the top of the Mountain, came crashing down over the Resort and brought with it all kinds of rocks and trees. Evac is doing their best but the snow is deep and time is precious.'
'We need heat quirks and people good at clean up. You up for this, GZ?’

Fucking /finally/, he’s been getting restless.
“Hey, Icy Thot, you in the mood to start melting snow?” He asks over his shoulder before getting to his feet. He shuffles over to his closet and pulls the door open.

Shouto grunts at him in response.
“Well I’m going, do you want me to bring you back breakfast after I’m finished?” He smirks when Shouto groans.
“No, I’m...” Shouto trails off, then sniffles. “Can you ask Picture Perfect to go with you today?” Katsuki turns and sees that Shouto hasn’t moved from the fetal position he’s curled into.
“… you okay?” When Shouto doesn’t respond, Katsuki goes back to the bed. “Shouto? I need you to talk to me. Are you okay?”
His friend finally rolls over and scrubs at his cheeks. His eyes are bloodshot and his skin looks pale, his hand trembling ever so slightly. “I’m /tired./” Shouto admits. “I don’t… do you think Izuku will be mad at me if I sit this one out?”
Katsuki sits on the bed and holds out his arms so Shouto can scoot closer and get dragged into a hug. “He brought on this new Hero specifically so you /could/ sit more of these out, Sho.” He leans down and puts his chin on Shouto’s head. “Go back to sleep, I’ll text Deku.”
Shouto sniffles and nods. “I… I changed my mind about breakfast. Bring me back something?”

“Fuck off.” Katsuki’s going to get him a huge cinnamon muffin.

_*_*_
_*_*_

The Resort is a popular tourist trap nestled alongside the base of a quirk built Mountain just outside of city limits.
The place is magically blessed or whatever, Katsuki isn’t entirely sure and he doesn’t really want to know, but it snows on one half of the mountain by the Resort, while the other half remains in spring and perfect for climbers and campers.
Fortunately, the snow fell on the winter side, so no campers are buried without winter gear. Unfortunately, the people in the resort are trapped, along with anyone who might have been outside for the light show they sometimes hold.
Katsuki contacts Deku to let him know that Shouto is staying the /fuck/ in bed, then sends messages out to his gaggle of personal sidekicks. He has ten in total, including the ones that share Hero’s.
Of the sidekicks that respond, he gets Ember, Helios, and Take Away. They meet up at the agency and the four of them pile into one of two Helicopters that are going to the site.
Despite everyone having their winter gear on, his sidekicks bundle together like sleepy ducklings as the sun starts to crest the horizon.
The flight is over before they know it, and Katsuki jumps out of the helicopter to sink into fresh, crunchy snow that goes halfway up his calves.

That’s not a good sign.
“Ember, get to work on finding people in the banks. Also where the fuck is your blanket? You’ll freeze over--Thank you for being the only one with a brain, Take Away. Helios, set up a camp for rescuees, make it extra toasty."
"Take Away, start cooking and stick by Helios and his camp. If anyone tries to tell you otherwise or move Helios, you send me them to me. Get to work.” Katsuki instructs his sidekicks with ease and they move without question.
Ember wraps a fleece blanket around her after Take Away pulls it off the helicopter, then she starts trudging through the snow. The skin around her hips is going from smooth lava to crackling with bits of dried black.
She looks around, her eyes going completely dark before she starts pointing.

Behind them, the second helicopter arrives.
“There, I can see... three people already.” Ember tells some of the Evac and EMT teams as they show up with shovels. “They’re dropping in temperature fast though.” She turns her head again and keeps scanning the snow and rubble.
Katsuki follows after her, keeping an eye on the quickly spreading black atop her skin. She’s wonderful for rescue, but she can lock up in snow and pass out very easily.
Still, Ember continues to point people out well passed her regular limits, then stops as her body tenses and she hisses. Katsuki has to physically pull her out of the snow as her skin starts to sizzle. “Alright, that’s /enough./” He informs her.
“You’re going into quirk overuse and your skin is drying out.”

“There’s more people though!” Ember tries pointing toward the Resort.
“Yeah but they’re in the /building,/ we’ll get to them. You need to go sit by Helios until your skin melts.” Katsuki turns to look for someone who might be strong enough to carry her.
“No, Boss, I mean, /over there!/ By the pine tree with the orange rope lights. At the base.” It’s hard for her to move, her skin caked over, but she jerks her arm and it cracks. She hisses through the pain and points again.
“Seeping body heat. It’s barely there, but....” There’s a warble in her voice, a terrified sound.

Katsuki knows what that means. Seeping is a code word they’ve long since developed to try and keep panic down.
That’s when Picture Perfect runs up, only he’s in thermal pants instead of his cargo shorts. His top is also fur lined, but other than that he looks entirely under dressed to be tromping around in the snow.
He’s also pulling caution markers out of his shoulders and tossing them to the Evac crew.

Katsuki doesn’t hesitate. He turns and calls out, catching the other Hero’s attention. “Discount Polaroid!”
Picture Perfect blinks in shock. “Wait, is this the nickname thing Red Riot told me about?” He holds out his arms so Katsuki can dump Ember into them. The Hero doesn’t hesitate to position her in a princess carry. “Fuck, you feel like ice!” She makes a dissatisfied noise.
“Ground Zero, what do I do?”

“Take her to Helios, he’ll be in the only area without snow. Do /not/ let her come back until her skin is orange.” He doesn’t say anything else before he’s bolting toward the tree Ember pointed out.
He doesn’t hear Picture Perfect calling over his shoulder. “Riot! Go with him!”

_*_*_
_*_*_

CW: Minor Character Death. Grief. Bury your feelings like you bury a dead body.

_*_*_

Katsuki gets to the tree and starts shoveling snow away with his hands until it becomes too packed to freely toss aside.
Another person drops to their knees beside him with a shovel, but Katsuki’s too hyper focused on this rescue mission to figure out who it is.
Years of experience have told Katsuki that there’s a slim chance the person he finds down there will be alive. It... happens sometimes, but he has to be /optimistic./ His team was fast, they didn’t waste any time getting here. This person would be alive, they...
He yanks off one glove and curls his fist to create a steady, short beam of heat with his quirk. The explosions are the length of a blowtorch but far more powerful, and the snow begins to melt under his hand.
There’s a bunch of rubble in the way, tree limbs and trash, but he only has to stop once to move things aside.

After that, Kirishima starts moving things for him.
Katsuki can’t focus on him, but he knows the outline of those hardened hands beneath flexible black gloves. He’s running on autopilot but he registers Kirishima as safe. All those years working with him in school mean they know their way around one another.
Neither gets in the others way.

And they don’t stop until they find the body.
She’s old, late 80’s maybe, bundled up in the fetal position but looking to all the world like she’s simply asleep instead of…
Her lips and fingers are blue. Her coat has frost all over it, and it looks like she’s been down here far longer than the half hour that the avalanche was reported. Her wispy hair is packed with snow, and Katsuki can see a medical alert bracelet on her wrist.
As the world goes quiet, Katsuki gently scoops her out of the snow and leans her against his chest. He doesn’t check for a pulse, her skin has no warmth beneath his ungloved hand. She doesn’t breath against his suit.
People start talking, but he doesn’t bother to listen. A warm hand rests on his lower back, urging him to his feet. He walks down the path that Take Away created for rescuers and rescuees to get to the camp.
There are cots already set up with medics buzzing around them, and Katsuki can see Helios sitting cross legged in the center of the thawed, dry clearing. There’s a small, glowing orange ball over his head that’s emitting warmth. It soaks into his skin and makes him feel guilty.
Katsuki sets the woman on the nearest cot and takes a steady breath, looking up in time to see Ember cover her mouth and close her eyes. She’s strong, but not strong enough to stop a few tears as they trickle down her cheeks.
Katsuki flips the woman’s medical bracelet over.

‘Yuki Sotawi.’
“Oh no.” He looks up and sees a woman in her late 40’s, maybe early 50’s, stumbling over and staring down at the body on the cot. “Oh, /mom./” She sounds sad, but she isn’t crying. It’s almost like she expected this. “I told you to stay /inside./”
Katsuki can’t take that. He turns on his heel and is ready to storm back into the fray, but a fragile hand touches his wrist. He turns to look back at the woman, who hasn’t dragged her eyes away from her mother.
“/Thank you/ for bringing her back.” She sounds… empty. Katsuki knows that one form of grief is to info dump. This won’t be the first time a stranger has loaded their grief onto him, it’s why they’d hired therapists specifically for their agency.
“She liked to wander off, just… go on walks.” The woman swallows thickly, then the tears start to fall. “She found out she had brain cancer or something, inoperable. This was her last hurrah.” There’s broken laughter. “What a way to go, right?”
Katsuki /can’t/ deal with things like this.
But Ember is there, because she’s his favorite and /she/ knows how comfort works. She swoops in and places herself in Katsuki’s position so he can go back to his job and this stranger can cry over her mothers body. He smiles at Ember, but it’s forced.
Then he hurries back into the snow, Kirishima right beside him but never saying a word as they reach out and hold hands.

( CW over )

_*_*_
_*_*_

( CW: Mild anxiety attack. Realizing life is complicated )

Around noon Katsuki’s sidekicks force him to take a break. He almost has an anxiety attack when they rush him into the privacy tent, but he handles it. Sort of. Maybe he has a small one?
Kirishima stands in front of him in the corner, blocking everyone else out while he reaches around to rub Katsuki’s back. He’s had to pull Katsuki’s hands out of his hair three times already, knowing that he tends to pull it out when he’s stressed.
They still don’t say a word to one another.

When Picture Perfect walks in to swap shifts with then, Katsuki nods and slips away from Kirishima so those two can talk in private for a few minutes. Once he’s back into the crisp chill of the snow, his heart begins to race.
“/Fuck./” The air feels like knives in his mouth and lungs, but it’ll pass. You can’t save everyone. You just can’t. No matter /what/ Deku says.

But there /are/ people he can save /today/, so he opens his eyes and rushes back in.
Kirishima shows up at his side a few minutes later and refuses to leave.
Katsuki focuses on the work, blasting away debris and pulling people out of the snow when needed. He breaks the doors on the Resort when they finally dig it out and carries two shivering toddlers in his arms while he makes his way back to the camp.
They almost don’t let him go, both clinging and hiding their faces in his shoulders, but he tricks them into relinquishing his suit by walking them by Take Away.
He whips up candied apples and hot chocolate out of the snow with his quirk and amazes the shit of of these tiny kids who can barely say their own names.
He ferries people for an hour before everyone is safe and accounted for, Ember calling the all clear. When he looks around he catches sight of Picture Perfect pulling a cartoonish bag out of his arm the way he remembers Yaoyarozu doing.
He wonders, briefly, how her run in America is going. She should be due home any week now, right?

Katsuki watches the bag snap open, and from it Bruiser pulls out fleece blankets, wrapping up teenagers and children.
Bruiser is personable and kind. Ember seems to have forgiven him for his transgression yesterday. He’s a good edition to the team.
Also, he’s quick on his feet, follows orders and gives Katsuki proper seniority, and pulled a snow shovel out of his hip when Katsuki’s hands had started cramping up.
“Think you should sit down yet?” Katsuki doesn’t mean to startle, but Kirishima’s voice is /right/ next to him and he stares at the man.

Now that he has a moment, he can /finally/ take in Red Riot, four years later.

And his costume is… /well./
The mask is the same if more form fitting for his face, and his hair looks thicker now than it had before as it stands up in spikes.
He’s also... /sort of/ still shirtless, but instead of a bare chest it’s a black and red ombre mesh top that goes from a thick red collar at his throat all the way to his belt. His arms are covered in black, shimmering lycra that expands and relaxes as he stresses his quirk.
The sleeves starts at the smaller, sturdier gears on his shoulders, and end at the tips of his fingers. The gears look more like pauldrons now, and red belts connect them in an ‘X’ over his chest instead of the weird zigzag he had in his earlier years.
He’s still got the cape and goofy red ‘R’ on his belt, and his pants are still baggy and a little ridiculous to look at, but his boots are thicker, steel toed and up to his knees. They have black metal straps around the top, and Katsuki wonders what they’re for.
And despite the minor changes, Kirishima is still a fucking /package./ Thick arms, a built chest with just the right amount of body fat, that dumb birthmark on his hip that looks like a burn but isn’t.
Tall, all smiles, intimidating but still looking like a whole ass clown for kids.

Also… is his /bellybutton/ pierced?
“I thought you were terrified of needles?” His gaze is stuck on the silver and diamond sitting pretty against tan skin.
“What?” Kirishima looks down, then laughs. “Oh right, this thing. Dude, I forget I have this half the time. Come on, sit down.” He maneuvers them toward one of the benches the EMT’s have set out and Katsuki begrudgingly relents.
“Going to tell me the story behind it?” Katsuki asks, hands closing over his knees when he sits down. He stares at the ground and wonders if it will open up and swallow him.
“I think I have a /lot/ of stories to tell you.” Kirishima sounds... ashamed? “I’m… not really sure where to start though.”
Katsuki closes his eyes. Today is… /not/ the day to get into this. They aren’t far from a grieving family, a consoling sidekick, a failure that Katsuki is tying so hard not to drown in.
“Just the piercing. I can’t… deal with anything else right now.” He doesn’t know why he’s so honest with Kirishima. The man doesn’t deserve it, but… it’s familiar. Katsuki can feel Kirishima’s warm body heat from where he sits, neither of them touching but close none the less.
Kirishima hums his acknowledgment and sucks in a sharp breath. “One of my ex’s, my last ex-girlfriend actually!” He starts off so earnestly that Katsuki feels the world drop out from beneath him.
“Her quirk let her manipulate the properties of metal to match body quirks. She did piercings because of that, and… well, we got really drunk one night, and-”

He keeps talking, but Katsuki tunes him out.
Kirishima has ex’s. More than one.

Kirishima has /ex’s./

Of course he does, he’s fucking /Kirishima./

Perfect, raw love in human form. Who wouldn't jump on that if given the opportunity.
But that doesn’t soothe the raw, greasy feeling in Katsuki’s chest and stomach. He’s never wanted to throw up more in his /entire life,/ but there’s no reason for it. They’re not /together,/ they’re /allowed/ to live separate lives.
Only… Katsuki /hadn’t./ And it’s only just now sinking in.

Kirishima had left and went on living. He dated, he was happy.

And Katsuki had married his work and… /was/ he happy?

He couldn’t… tell right now. He felt too numb to have a proper answer.
“Boss?” Ember walks up, softly interrupting Kirishima’s story. Katsuki looks up at her and sees the cracked, cooled lava down her face from her tears.

“Hey, what’s up?” Katsuki stands at the same time Kirishima does.
Four years ago when they were a duo, Kirishima was the comforting force between them with any sidekick or Hero partner they had. But when he left, Katsuki fell into the all the rolls Kirishima had left behind.
So he holds out his arms and Ember steps into the hug, sniffling. This is as close to comfort as he gets, and it’s only because he knows her.
“Can we go home?” Ember whispers, eyes shut tight. “I… I just want to go /home./”
Katsuki swallows and nods. “Tell the EMT’s that we’re packing up so they can set up proper heating stations. Helios probably needs a break from using his quirk anyway, I’ll get him after I talk to the pilot."
"Ask Take Away if he wants to stay with Picture Perfect for clean up, then meet me at the helicopter.” He steps back and she nods, already walking off.
“I’ll go with you, yeah?” Kirishima asks, hope in his voice.

Bile fills Katsuki’s throat and he has to shut his eyes and clench his fists to force it back down. Now isn’t the time for this.
He shakes his head no. “You’re not my sidekick.” He states. “You have to stay with your Hero.” He doesn’t look back to see what kind of a reaction that gets out of Kirishima, but it feels like a heavy one.
Either way, Kirishima doesn’t argue, barely breathes, and Katsuki trudges up the hill of snow to inform their pilot they’ll be leaving soon.

He still has to get Shouto that muffin.

( CW over )

_*_*_
_*_*_

The sidekicks get dropped off in what Katsuki affectionately calls ‘Deku Daycare,’ which is just a therapy breakdown room where Deku gets practical frequent flier miles. Katsuki makes sure they’re all settled in before he checks his phone on his way out.
He has half an hour before he’s legally allowed to be back on duty, ( barring an emergency ) but that’s plenty of time to get Shouto his muffin and maybe take a nap if he flies.
He stops at the nearest Bakery on his way home, which is Hero themed and run by an old man who recognizes him on sight, and puts in his orders. He gets Shouto the biggest cinnamon muffin they have and sets up a delivery for a dozen variety baked goods to be sent to the agency.
When he gets home, Shouto’s still fast asleep in his bed and curled around one of his bigger pillows. Katsuki barely gets his bulkier gear off before he’s crawling back into bed and nudging Shouto with his shoulder.
“Nnngh?” Shouto blinks at him in surprise a he wakes up, eyes unfocused. “Kats?” He’s already wrapping his arms around him.
Katsuki swallows. “Hey, I got you that muffin.” Shouto hums happily and pulls back far enough to take the box. “Quick question.” Shouto hums. “Do you… do you think I’ve been happy, the last few years?”
“I... feel like this is a trick question and that if I answer incorrectly, you’ll take the muffin away.” Shouto mutters before rubbing his eyes.
“I’m not taking your muffin away.” Katsuki pushes hair away from Shouto’s face. “I just… had the thought today. That I didn’t know if I was happy or not.”
Shouto stretches out on the bed and puts the box behind him on the other nightstand before he turns and cups Katsuki’s cheeks. “You’re /happy,/” he insists.
“You run an agency with your best friends, you’ve got a wonderful home, great sidekicks. You seem happy, is something bothering you?”

“What about my personal life?” Katsuki rushes through the words. “I don’t /have/ one, I have work and barely sleeping when I’m /not/ at work.”
The light glints through the curtains and fall over Shouto’s bare shoulders. “Katsuki.” There’s a passion in his voice. “What happened today?”
Pulling back, Katsuki sinks further into the sheets. “I… someone died.” Shouto lets out an understanding hiss. “And then I went back to work, because that’s what you do, and Kirishima was there."
But then he started talking about his ex-girlfriend and I realized that he just… kept /going./ And I /stopped./”
“You didn’t stop, Katduki.” Shouto leans in to kiss his cheek, fingers rubbing over his jawline. “You’ve come so far since we were teenagers. Back then you wouldn’t have let me do that. You’ve grown so much.”
“I really haven’t though?” Katsuki takes Shouto’s hand and swallows. “Shouto, when was he last time you got laid?” He turns to see Shouto blink at him in confusion, a flush flooding his skin.

“Uhhh...”

“Be honest.”
“Like… two weeks ago?” Shouto admits, though it’s heavy with guilt. “One night stand through Hero Escorts. Why?” Katsuki nods and shuts his eyes tightly.
“The last person I slept with was Kirishima. B efore he left.” The admittance tastes sour. “It was goodbye sex, and I think I cried after he left but I don’t remember? And I… I didn’t think anything about it otherwise.”
His hand scrubs over his face, fingers scratching at his scalp. “I haven’t dated, kissed, or fucked anyone since Kirishima. But he has. I threw a fit when he left and he...”
“He vanished, Katsuki.” Shouto’s in his space again. “You focused on being a Hero, doing what you love. And then you got Number one-”

“And Deku took it from me-”

“And you took it back-”

“Yeah then it was you-”
“Katsuki!” Shouto shoves his shoulder. “We’ve been playing the top three game for as long as I can remember, get off my dick and listen.”

“The fact I’m not /on/ your dick is what I’m whining about!” Because he can admit he’s whining if it’s just him and Shouto.
“You’re not on my dick because you’re a decent human being who knows me better than I know myself.” Shouto counters. “You know that I get lonely, that I come to you for comfort because you’re familiar and safe."
He went on. “But you also know who I want and you never let me feed into a sick sort of self flagellation by fucking the shit out of me yourself.”

“Because you’re /so/ convinced you’re a bottom.” Katsuki mutters with an eye roll.
“We are /not/ talking about that right now, fucking /focus./” Shouto steers the conversation back with a huff. “Look, you’ve done some absurd bullshit over the years.”
He sits up, the light making his piercings glint. “But feeling sorry for yourself? The absolute dumbest. You’re not Midoriya.”

Katsuki lets out a bark of startled laughter. “Holy shit.”
Shouto’s entire chest flushes as his words sink in. “Oh my /god./ Don’t you dare tell him I said that.”
They both fall into uncontrollable laughter for a while, Shouto leaning against the headboard until they settle into an easier silence. When he smiles down at Katsuki, it’s with genuine warmth.
“I think today just threw you off,” he whispers. “And seeing Kirishima shirtless probably didn’t help. I mean, his costume /is/ still shirtless isn’t it?”

Katsuki groans.
“Thought so.” Shouto chuckles. “How about this. We eat breakfast, you shower before you go back to work, and I-”
A loud fog horn of an alert goes off on Katsuki’s phone suddenly. Both of them scramble off the bed when a second later, the same alert goes off on Shouto’s phone across the room.
Stark naked, Shouto vaults toward the wall to unhook his phone from the charging station before he answers. He’s fumbling to put a leg through his snatched up boxers as Katsuki swipes the alert off and yanks on his gear.
“What’s going on?” Shouto asks down the line, phone between his cheek and shoulder. Katsuki can hear Deku’s voice on the other end, shouting on what sounds like speaker.
‘Hero’s down, warehouse district!’ Deku shouts something else and there’s an echoed call of ‘Got it bunny boy!’ before there’s a crackle of electricity. ‘Quirk trafficking bust gone wrong. Tell Kacchan to pick up his /fucking/ phone!’
“He’s here with me, it didn’t go off until the alert rang.” Shouto states, dropping the phone to the counter and swapping it to speaker so he can pull on the rest of his suit.

“/Really/ Deku?” Katuki calls as he locks on one gauntlet.
‘Pinky’s down!’ Deku shouts. ‘So is Cellophane!’

Katsuki’s out the door before Shouto even has his boots on. He has the location on as he jets into the air, his body hot with anger.

Whoever hurt his family is going to wish they hadn’t woken up breathing that morning.

_*_*_
_*_*_

( CW : Blood, injury, hastily put together plans )

Kyoka Jiro meets Katsuki outside of the hastily thrown together ‘stand off zone,’ and the two share a one armed hug. She has blood smeared on her face, her ear jacks, and knuckles, but other than that she looks okay.
“I got one of our idiots out, but they’re holding Mina fucking hostage.” She snarls.

“How?!” Katsuki asks in a hissed whisper. “She’s a fucking acid fountain!”
“Quirk bullets and the fact tthey’ve got kids with them, little ones,” Kyoka states. “They told her if she tried to get away or get out of the warehouse, they’d start killing them one by one. They’re not even being quiet about it.” Her ear jacks clack together in agitation.
“She’ll be fine, I trust her. How’s Scotch Tape? And where the /fuck/ is Deku?” He asks as they crouch down behind several crates and crawl toward a group of other Hero’s.

“Talking to Picture Perfect.” Kyoka whispers. “And Hanta’s okay, got shot in the shoulder with a bullet.”
“Regular or those temporary quirk canceling ones?”

“Regular. Knocked him on his ass too, he’s so embarrassed.” She snickers as Katsuki smirks. “Hey, why didn’t you tell us Kirishima was back?” Her ear jacks poke him in the shoulder.
She’s still part of the family, she deserved to know. Had Kaminari forgotten to tell her? Or was she mad because he /personally/ didn’t tell her?

He tries not to groan. “Can we talk about this later?”
She smiles at him and they sidle up to the barrier. Deku’s bleeding from his right bicep where it looks like a bullet grazed him. He’s also scowling, but that’s to be expected.
“Report?” Katsuki asks as he pats him on the back.

“Where’s Shouto?” Deku asks, turning to check Katsuki for injuries. Katsuki rolls his eyes, but lets him.

“On his way, now report.” He pokes Deku is the shoulder.
“Temporary quirk erasing bullets.” Deku grumbles, patting his arm just above where his wound is. “It’s been about ten minutes so far, lasts about twenty. They’ve shot Mina twice now. Just enough for them to hole up in the warehouse and take hostages.”
Katsuki nods and looks over to see Kirishima knelt in front of Hanta, who is having a bullet removed from his shoulder by Denki of all people. Hanta looks up, locks eyes with him, and snorts.
“They shot Mina in the thigh, she’s gonna /kill/ them.” Hanta rasps out. “Her thighs were blessed by The Pope.”

“They were not.” Kirishima says, voice soft but full of laughter.

“The Pope is her favorite stripper.” Denki mutters.
“Now stop squirming.” He digs in deeper with the tweezers, then huffs in triumph as he pulls the bullet out. “I told you to wait for backup, but oh no.” Hanta just chuckles, though he’s starting to look like he’s about to throw up.
“Oi.” Katsuki cuts them off and they turn to him as a unit. Despite Kirishima not having been around, he slots in like he never left. “We have to get in, keep the kids and Pinky safe, arrest these idiots, then get tweedle tit and tweedle twit to a hospital.”
“Am I tit or twit?” Hanta asks, his voice slurring. Kyoka rolls her eyes and hurries over to him, already sorting through her medical kit.

Katsuki turns back to Deku and Picture Perfect. “What’s the plan? How are we getting Pinky back?”
Picture Perfect holds up a hand and pulls off his gauntlet. “They don’t know me, or how my quirk works. Deku suggested we use that to our advantage, I can act meek and at least get someone out to talk with me.”

“That’ll just get you /shot./” Katsuki argues.
“My skin absorbs impacts and holds liquids to be formed into raw material after I will it out. Once I do that though, it doesn’t go back in. I have to get new tattoos constantly, that or ink pumped into my skin to make certain pieces bigger.”
He shows off the bare patches of skin that are left blank from their earlier mission that morning. Katsuki remembers that he’d pulled a shovel from that one spot on his hip.

“I don’t think that’ll stop a bullet.” Katsuki argues.
“Has before.” The tattoos on his skin shift as one and wriggle to fill in the space that was once bare. “It’ll still bruise, and that patch of skin won’t hold ink until it heals, but it’s worth it.”
“Are you-god you’re as self sacrificing as /Deku/ is. No /wonder/ he hired you.” Katsuki rubs at his temples and tries not to groan. “Red Riot.” Kirishima sits up like an alert puppy. “Can you still deflect bullets by simply existing?”
Kirishima grins and it’s all sharp, dangerous teeth as his quirk ripples all over. “Duh.”

“Good.” Katsuki checks the levels on his gauntlets. “The frontal assault is a good idea though.”

“It’s not an assault!” Deku argues. “It’s a distraction.”
“Uh huh.” Katsuki pulls off a grenade from his hip and holds it out to Picture Perfect, who takes it and raises an eyebrow.
“You go up there and do your negotiation thing, if things get hairy, use this. Otherwise, we’re going to surround the building while you talk the idiots down.”

Deku’s eyes brighten. “Stall for time until Pinky can use her quirk again!”
“You too, idiot, we need your speed.” Katsuki flicks Deku’s ear and then turns back to Hanta. “Hey.” He walks over and crouches down. “Will you be okay if we leave you alone, or do you want someone to stay?”
Hanta snuffles, his hand groping out weakly. Katsuki takes it and squeezes. “I’d feel better with an escort.” He whispers. “I’ve lost… a lot of blood.”
I’ll stay with him.” Kyoka volunteers, rubbing Hanta’s uninjured shoulder. “I’ll let Shouto know what’s going on when he gets here, yeah?”
Nodding, Katsuki stands up and turns back to Picture Perfect, Deku, Charge Bolt, and the now determined Red Riot. “Let’s go get back our Alien Queen and her fucking face huggers.” He says with a growl.

_*_*_
_*_*_

( CW: Injury, bleeding, guns, mentions of child abuse, stopped child quirk trafficking, Mina is our Queen )

Shouto arrives after they’ve already split up, but Katsuki catches his blue suit dashing behind crates and shipping containers as they surround the building.
From his new position, he can see maybe a dozen villains with guns and two with knives that are currently surrounding Mina and the gaggle of kids who are clinging to her.
All of the kids are crying, but one of them is also shirtless and tieing the fabric to Mina’s thigh as a temporary tourniquet, his face determined.
Mina’s going pale fast, but she looks furious as her eyes track each movement the men inside make. She’s not letting them get any closer to these kids, but she also isn’t in any shape to get up with the badly patched wounds in her leg.
Katsuki wants to dive in through the window right /now,/ but he isn’t faster than a bullet. Deku might be, but he’s still on a countdown until his power comes back.
A flash of red from the front has Katsuki turning to see Picture Perfect and Red Riot walk through the barrier and out into the open, both their arms up in surrender.
Picture Perfect looks like a fresh, fumbling rookie next to Kirishima, even despite the fact the dude is built like a lumberjack.
A man, presumably the leader of the operation, storms toward the door with his gun raised. He doesn’t leave the building, but he leaves the door open to showcase the kids. One man levels a gun at the nearest kids head and Mina shouts, pulling the kid to her chest when it happens.
She gnashes blunt teeth, a habit she picked up from Kirishima back in school that she never stopped.
The man in the doorway levels his own gun at Picture Perfect and shouts for him to halt.

Bruiser does.
“We’re not here to fight, just talk! A nehotiation. Is there anything we can get you?” Picture Perfect shouts across the courtyard. Katsuki looks back to the gunmen inside as they start up an angry conversation.
All the villains have their eyes trained on Kirishima and Bruiser, and this is a /very/ good time to move.
He pulls out a mirror from one of his pockets and angles the light across one of Mina’s hands while people are distracted. It takes a few tries before one of the kids sees it and points it out to her, silent as they can.
Mina’s eyes lazily scan over to the window and he flips her off casually. He can see her fight a smile.
She looks back and snarls at the nearest villain, barking words Katsuki can’t make out. The villain just scoffs at her, finally moving the gun away from the kids head. Only now he’s lifting it up and turning it around as if he’s going to slam to butt into Mina’s skull.
Katsuki sucks in a breath and grabs the edge of the crate. Like /fuck/ is he going to let that fucker hurt his /girl!/

At the same time that he takes a step forward, a gunshot from the front goes off.
Katsuki can’t focus on that, Mina’s lost enough blood and he’s not going to leave her with brain trauma too. He barrels through the window at the same time as arks of lightning crackle in and seize up two of the men.
Glass shatters around him as Katsuki propels his body by angling his crossed hands toward his shoulders. His feet crash hard into the man with the gun aimed at Mina and it swings toward the ceiling and misfires.
Ice crashes into the building from the other side and takes out two more of the men with guns, but not before they get shots off and, /somehow,/ miss Denki when he barrel rolls through the window.
Mina throws an arm out and melts more guns before slumping forward into her gaggle of kids, who scream and duck when a knife gets thrown toward her.
One of the children takes the knife through the arm trying to protect her, and their scream is terrified and rattling the air around them.
Kirishima runs through the front door with what sounds like a roar, skin hardened as he uses an arm to clothesline the other man with a knife and then direct open fire onto his impenetrable body.
Deku is there from the back, pinning the one who hurt the kid and slamming his head once against the ground hard enough that it makes a crunching sound.

He doesn’t lift his head back up.
Denki is dropping people left and right alongside Shouto, who gets grazed by a bullet but doesn’t seem to slow down.
Katsuki yanks a child out of the line of fire and directs an AP shot off at the weapon, which explodes and knocks the villain backwards into one of the shipping containers.
All of this happens in the span of a few seconds, and Katsuki turns to see the flash of something truly wicked in the doorway.
Bruiser, or some twisted, dripping black version of him that’s oozing in midair, has the leader held up by the throat and is pouring thick, viscous ink into his mouth with what would be his hand.
Katsuki jerks away before he vomits, flashes of a memory from his teens trying to surge up.

He tastes tepid sewer water for a split second before he’s running to the kid with the knife sticking out of their arm.
Most of the villains are down by now, Kirishima barreling into them with sharp claws and harder right hooks.

“Hey.” Katsuki shouts loud enough to catch the kids attention and the hysterics lessen. “You’re safe now, this’ll come right out if you want it to.”
The kid’s eyes go impossibly wider before they scream “Of course I want it out,” and the ceiling rafters rattle before they clamp their mouth shut and began sobbing grossly. A voice quirk and trauma like this are going to mean so much therapy.
Katsuki turns the kid toward Denki, who is better at first aid then he’ll ever be, and pushes him. The kids stumbles, surprised and clutching his arm in terror.
Denki already has his arms out as he accepts the stumbling kid, but Katsuki’s focus is now on Mina. He knows Shouto is hurrying over to help the kid as well, but he’s looking down at his friend as she tries to sit up.
She’s got a near death grip on one of the kids, a little girl who is covered in scars and bruises and weeping loud and hysterically into Mina’s chest.
“I’ve got you baby girl,” Mina whispers, and it sounds so horribly weak. “I told you I’d get you out safe.” She tucks the girls hair behind her ear and lets Katsuki rush to her side, where she twists to show off her thigh.
The first wound goes right through and is a puddle beneath her, but the second one looks like it didn’t exit. Mina looks at Katsuki with weak, tired eyes. He pulls off a glove.

“Bullet still in there?” He asks.
She nods before looking over his shoulder. “I’ve lost a lot of fucking blood, Kitty Kat, because I see Eiji. And I /know/ I’m not seeing that boy right now.” Her voice has never sounded so scared.
She takes his glove between her teeth when he hands it to her and muffles a scream when he cauterizes the first wound. When her skin has stopped sizzling, he looks up at her as she spits out the glove.
“You haven’t lost /that/ much blood.” Which is both a lie and the truth. “That’s really him, Eijiro /fucking/ Kirishima, back from the ghost zone.” And as if speaking of him summons the fucker, Kirishima skids to Mina’s side on his knees.
He’s weeping openly as he reaches out to her.

But Mina slaps his hand away and snarls. “Get the /fuck/ away from me.” The kid in her arm blubbers and buries herself closer.

Kirishima looks like he might as well have been the one who was shot twice. “Minnie.”
“No! Absolutely not!” Mina sways, one of her rescued kids holding her up in fear. “Your best bae privileges were fucking /revoked/.” She pants angrily, leaning too heavily against the kid until one of the others pry the child in her arms away.
Her face morphs from furious to neutral, then a little scared. “Shit… Katsuki I need a hospital.” She slurs before her eyes flutter shut and she slumps, unconscious.
Katsuki’s hands go to his pockets and he pulls out a proper tourniquet for her leg. “Her husband’s going to punch you in the jaw, if her wife doesn’t beat him to it.” Katsuki mutters as he ties the band off. “Deku! You back up yet?”
“Husband /and/ wife?!” Kirishima still looks stunned as Katsuki grabs both the mans hands and uses them to cover her wounds when he tears away shirts and puts proper gauze down. “When did she get-”
“Like, a few months ago?” Denki says as he starts to put the villains in cuffs and capture tape. “Dude, she still texts your number, she invited you to the wedding. Why do you think she’s so pissed off?”
Kirishima winces. “I… I changed phones. I haven’t turned my old one on in years.” He admits, putting more pressure on the wound.
“No fucking shit?” Katsuki rolls his eyes while he cleans up Mina’s thigh. “Never would have fucking guessed after the first month of you not returning any of my fucking phone calls.”
“There are /children/ present.” Deku reminds them. “And I only need a minute before I can charge up, but I’ll prioritize Mina to the hospital first.”
The one of the older looking kids suddenly huddles up to Katsuki’s side, and he lets her. He guesses she’s about seven, with blond with hair that looks like it was cut off with a knife near her scalp. She’s also covered in bruises and has an eye patch.
When she sniffles, Katsuki puts an arm around her and hugs her to reassure her she’s safe. She doesn’t hesitate to cling.

“Will… will Mrs. Pinky be okay?” The kid asks in a whisper.
“Oh yeah, she’s as tough as it gets,” Katsuki whispers back. “Is this all of you?” He watches as the girl shakes her head no. “Where are the rest? Are they in the building?” She points at their feet. “Show me.”

When Katsuki stands, he sees movement out of the corner of his eye.
The villain leader has been dropped to the floor and the gun he’d been holding is bent up like a pretzel, The dripping inky version of Bruiser is slithering along the walls inside the warehouse like a proper nightmare as Bruiser walks inside and looks around.
Ink drips off his wrist as it connects him to the creature, and it’s honestly more disturbing that Bruiser seems so unbothered by that.
When he shakes his head and sneezes as dust flies up toward his face, the creature disconnects and drops to the ground in a splatter of ink, which hits the villain and Bruiser’s pants. He doesn’t seem bothered as he rubs his nose and puts his gauntlet back on.
Katsuki looks away and lets the girl take his ungloved hand. She guides him to the back of the warehouse where there’s a trap door to a basement that’s hidden by a crate. He moves it without ever letting her go, and they take the wide stairs together.
When they reach the bottom of the winding staircase, Katsuki has to set off a few pops until he can find the light switch. Looking up as the fluorescent lights flicker overhead, he has to fight not to go back upstairs and break unconscious legs.
The walls are lined inch to inch with cages that are full of kids, none of them older then maybe nine. They all stare at him in fear, tired eyes resigned to whatever fate they would have previously endured.
For this amount of kids, there should have been more villains. That unsettles him and Katsuki instantly puts his guard back up.

As if understanding his confusion, the girls tugs his hand and pulls him over to the wall where she points out a cork board full of papers and lists.
One such list is a rotation calendar with initials and dates. Another has children assigned by head shots and numbers, along with the dates they were going to be ‘sold’ and to what auction or buyer.
Katsuki snarls, baring his teeth as he unpins the paper and puts it in one of his pockets for safe keeping.

“Do you know where they keep the keys?” Katsuki asks. The girl opens her mouth, but shakes her head no again.
“They didn’t use keys, they used a machine thing, with a card.”
Katsuki tries not to growl. “Blowtorch it is.” He walks to the nearest cage and clenches his fist. He can feel the cramping start up in his fingers, but he’ll fight through it.
“Eyes closed kids.” He shouts. “Earmuffs too, it’s about to get loud.” A concentrated beam of heat sears from his palm and begins to melt to door at the hinges.

( CW over )

_*_*_
_*_*_

For the next hour, Katsuki, Kirishima, and Brusier work on breaking open /every/ single cage and escorting the kids upstairs. Before that though, the villains are bound, gagged, and thrown in a shipping container and out of sight of the kids.
Once that’s done, Denki, Kyoka, and Shouto keep the children occupied and clean them up.

When the police finally arrive after everyone has settled down or fallen asleep on a various Hero, Social Services falls in behind them.
They have more heroes with them and plenty of blankets, clothes, and food. Katsuki is surprised it’s not utter chaos all around him, but the kids seem too worn down to act like proper children.
Mina and Hanta are already gone, Deku having run them to the nearest Hero hospital as soon as his powers were back up. Right now Denki is carrying sleeping kids from the building and into large vans with black tinted windows where sidekicks wait to escort them to a safe house.
Bruiser is sitting on the floor of one of the vans, surrounded by interested eyes as he distracts them for various medics to check them over.

Unfortunately, he’s growing on Katsuki.

Like a fungus.

A weird, creepy, viscous fungus.
Kirishima’s sitting off to the side, head in his hands as he tries to pull himself together. Katsuki’s with him, but only because he doesn’t want the idiot to be alone. He’s already told the police everything they need to know and given them the papers he secured.
He’s not needed anywhere else right now.
Across the docks, Katsuki can see Shouto getting his arm tended to. His friend is fighting a yawn while it happens, and it’s pretty funny to watch him attempt polite conversation while trying not to nod off as adrenaline seeps out of him.
They lock eyes across the docks and Katsuki smirks, unable to help himself when Shouto sticks his tongue out.

Kirishima sniffles and it catches Katsuki’s attention. He’s steeling his shoulders, but his voice still comes out hoarse.
“I’m happy for you. You know that, right?” Tears begin to form in Kirishma’s eyes and he shakes his head. He reaches up to rub at the collar of his hero suit before pulling a black cord out of one of his pockets.
A black bag is tied to the end and he loops it over his head before he begins to fidget with it. “You two make… make a great couple.” He looks back over to Shouto and puts on the most fake smile Katsuki has ever seen.
“I… what the fuck?” Katsuki takes a second, then rolls his eyes. “For /fucks/ sake, not you /too./” He leans forward, looking across to Shouto before he crooks a finger to bring him over.
“Now /really/ isn’t the time to talk about this, but I’m not going to dance around it anymore. It was funny at first, but I’m tired of it.”
Kirishima watches Shouto wearily. “What… are you talking about?” A moment passes before Shouto arrives, rubbing at the edge of his freshly bandaged arm.

“Did you need me?” Shouto asks, eyes flicking between Kirishima and Katsuki.
“He thinks we’re dating.” Katsuki drawls.

“You’re… not?” Kirishima blinks owlishly up at Shouto. “But you… Midoriya said you two--”

“--Izuku said /what?/” Shouto’s voice is more like a bark, a trickle of flame curling around one of his fingers.
Katsuki groans. “Fucking- is /that/ why Japan thinks we’re a thing?!” He tugs at his hair. “That’s it, I’m going to kill him.”
“We aren’t /dating,/ both Katsuki and I are single.” Shouto reaches down and grabs Katsuki by the front of his suit, then pulls him to his feet.

“You could have just asked me to stand up, asshole.” Katsuki grumbles.
But the next thing he knows, Shouto’s throwing his arms around Katsuki’s shoulders and leaning in to kiss him. Katsuki squeaks in surprise and his hands fan out to the side, small explosions popping off in his palms as chapped lips press to his.
It’s a second of contact, maybe two, before Shouto is pulling back and glaring at Kirishima. “But I /will/ move in if I need to and take him far the fuck away from you and whatever /bullshit/ it is you’re playing at.” He turns back to Katsuki. “Patrol for an hour, then hospital?”
Katsuki blinks at him, the world moving in slow motion before he nods. “Yeah, patrol.” He lets Shouto take his hand and walk him away. He’s…

What?

/What/ just happened?
Did… did Icy Thot just RomCom vengeance kiss him in front of his /ex-boyfriend?/

Did Shouto Todoroki just /claim territory/ over /Katsuki?/

Did Katsuki just /let him???/
They’re on the other side of town by the time Katsuki’s world snaps back into focus, and he punches Shouto hard in the uninjured arm.

“What the /FUCK?!/” He doesn’t bother to lower his voice as they walk the street.
“Welcome back.” Shouto mutters, rubbing his no doubt bruised skin. “I was making a point.”
“In the dumbest fucking way possible? You fucking freakazoid! What made you think that was a good idea? Did you get hit in the fucking head and suddenly just have chunks of stupid replace your brain! What possessed you and made you think that was smart?”
He’s actively shouting now, and people are simply moving to the other side of the street.

Ground Zero yelling at his fellow Hero’s isn’t news.
“He got the message.” Shouto counters, voice level. But there’s a sharpness to his face that looks angry.

“You kissed me without my permission.” Katsuki counters.

“It was all I could think of on such short notice. He kept looking at you like he wanted to devour you and I-”
“Stop!” Katsuki plants his feet on the sidewalk and Shouto almost stumbles beside him. “Just… /Shou./” He sighs and puts both his hands over his mask, blocking out the world. “You’re my best friend, and I know you meant well, but that was /really fucked up./”
Shouto doesn’t respond, so Katsuki continues.

“I know you get protective, and I /know/ you just want what’s best for me, but… you can’t do that again.” He pulls his hands away and sees the tension in Shouto’s shoulders. “Hey… look at me.”
Shouto does, and it’s a look full of guilt.

“Why did you do that, Shouto?”
“He’s… he’s going to end up hurting you again,” Shouto whispers.
“You’re going to let him back in despite everything, because I know you still love him, and he’s going to hurt you. He… I won’t let him hurt you, and I won’t let him take you away. I know what I did was wrong, but I… I can’t lose you.”
Katsuki lets out a breath and looks around. No one is paying them any mind, so he pulls Shouto down the street and into one of the alleyways they use to take breaks. Once there, out of eyesight and earshot, he punches Shouto’s shoulder again. Only this time, it’s not as hard.
Shouto has a… /thing/ about losing people since his sister got sick that one time and had to be hospitalized. It doesn’t always rear its ugly head, he’s been in therapy for years and normally he can sort through his own emotions.
But Katsuki knows he’s been at his breaking point for weeks, working near twenty-four hour shifts and busting his ass because Katsuki wasn’t able to take shifts. Shouto’s so stressed he can barely function, so he’s fallen back into old habits.
Katsuki pulls him in for a hug and Shouto takes it, head on his shoulder. Their height difference makes it awkward, but years of this has evened it out.

“I resent that you think I’d let him hurt me.” Katsuki mutters.

“You love him.” Shouto counters.
“But I resent /more/ that you think I’d ever leave you.” He reaches up and cups Shouto’s face. “You’re worth more than good dick.”
Shouto smiles, though it’s weak. “But you really like good dick.”

“I really /really/ like good dick.” Katsuki can’t help but laugh at his own words.
“But you’re my best friend. So stop trying to keep me close like this, you’ll push me away. I’m the only one allowed to smother people.” He presses a firm, serious kiss to Shouto’s forehead. “And /ask/ the next time you want to kiss me, idiot.”
Shouto nods, then wraps his arms around Katsuki for a tight hug.

“I /am/ an idiot.” He mutters.

“It is known far and wide.” Katsuki pats his back.
“Now get your shit together so we can go back on patrol. I’m still mad at you, and I fully expect you to go and apologize to Kirishima, but… later.”

Another nod, and Shouto fixes his hair. “I’ll… schedule an appointment with my therapist, too.”

“/Good./”
They spend a minute longer simply hugging, right up until Shouto pulls away and fixes his suit. His face is schooled and practiced again, he looks unaffected.

But Katsuki knows better.
“Don’t forget to grab your shit from my place after work.” They walk out of the alleyway and get back to patrolling. Waiting for their phones to chime and let them know if Mina and Hanta are stable enough for visitors.
Katsuki’s mind wanders back to Kirishima and the way his hand rested on the bag on his necklace. The way his eyes had watered, how hurt he’d look when he’d admitted he was happy for Katsuki. He thinks about everything that could mean, and everything it couldn’t.
And he wonders, not for the first time, what the /fuck/ happened to Red Riot.

_*_*_
_*_*_

‘we need to talk’

Katsuki gets the text at 3:15 in the morning from an unknown number, and he nearly throws his phone through the window.
He’s at home, but not in bed. Or, he’s not in /his/ bed. He’s currently in the family room on the group bed, which is just two California Queen’s pushed together with several blankets strewn everywhere.
A patched up Mina is on his left, Hanta on his right, and Denki lays across all of their feet. Kyoka is at the foot of the bed on the left, fast asleep in her own duvet, and Hitoshi is on the right side playing a game on his phone.
Mina’s partners are in the guest room, not wanting to take away from ‘Extended family time’ as they call it.

Shouto’s crashed in the bedroom, muffin eaten and one very loud, very angry phone call with Deku had that Katsuki wanted to eavesdrop on but was too busy to.
With sleepy, slightly numb fingers, Katsuki replies to the text.

‘wjo id gis’

He hits send, then squints before trying again.

‘who is this’

That one goes through much better, and he drops the phone back to the bed.
“Do you need to go in?” Hitoshi asks in a whisper. “I can get Denks off if you do. Might need help with Mina and Hanta though.”
Katsuki shakes his head no, then shifts when Mina nuzzles closer to his side and snuffles in her sleep. She and Hanta are on some heavy pain medication, so waking them up is going to take a miracle.
They have to be dosed at this point, it’s the only way they’re guaranteed a full night of sleep.

His phone buzzes again and he picks it up to squint at the too bright screen.
‘its kirishima’

Katsuki scowls. He won’t even call /himself/ by his first name?

‘can we meet in the morning in your office? just us?’

He puts his phone down and leaves Kirishima on read.
Denki takes that moment to jerk awake, gasping as he sits up and clutches his chest. Kyoka’s eyes snap open, but Hitoshi is already crawling across the bed, fingers in Denki’s hair.
“Hey, easy baby. Bad dream?” He whispers, voice soothing. Denki makes this soft, hurt noise before he rolls off the trio’s feet and onto Hitoshi’s lap. “Was it the one about Kirishima again? And the body bag?” Denki nods.
“He’s alive, Sparky,” Katsuki mutters something he’s said a thousand times. “He’s fine.” Only this time, he means it. He nudges his friend with his foot.

Kyoka grunts and closes her eyes again. “Are we forgiving him or not? Kiri I mean.” She asks, words slurred.
“Person to person.” Katsuki says around a yawn. “Minnie doesn’t, Scotch Tape does, I thought Pikachu did, but now... not so sure.”

“We talked,” Denki whispers. “For five hours.” He hides his face in Hitoshi’s chest. “It’s stupid, he’s stupid.”
Katsuki hums. “I bet he is.” His phone goes off next to his head again.

‘youre probably asleep but let me know in the morning’

Another text.

‘its important, katsuki’
He picks up his phone and grunts. Kyoka looks up, but sees what he’s about to do and catches his phone before he can throw it off the bed.

“You need this.” She reminds him.

“Block that number then.” He grumbles before letting himself fall back to sleep.

_*_*_
_*_*_

When Katsuki and Shouto arrive at the agency the next morning, Deku’s already at the garage door, bent at the waist with his hands clasped together in front of his head. Shouto’s jovial laughter dies the instant he sees the other man.
“I’m so sorry!” Deku pleads. “I-I keep fucking up, I’m so so so so-”
“Oh my /god,/ shut the fuck up.” Katsuki walks by and ruffles Deku’s hair. “We get it, you’re incompetent. This isn’t news. I’ll just kick your ass in one of the training rooms later to teach you a lesson. I’ve got bigger problems to worry about anyway.”
Deku doesn’t stand up. “I never should have assumed anything, I should have just outright asked.”
“You should have.” Shouto says it coolly, but doesn’t move to join Katsuki by the door. “But we’ve all been making mistakes lately. Serious ones.” He doesn’t sigh, but his chest expands as if he’s going to. “Speaking of, I… I think I need a month off. For my mental health.”
Katsuki’s finger fumbles over the call button. Shouto’s /never/ taken a full month off. A week at the longest, and if that’s how he’s reacting after yesterday...
Deku finally stands up, eyes watering. “Yes, of course! Anything you want! I can hire on temporary Hero’s, that way your areas get patrolled for /sure./” Because they all know Shouto patrols areas meant for two people instead of one.
“Deku.” Katsuki hesitates for a split second, then throws caution to the wind as he presses the call button. “Maybe you should take a month off too.”

“What?!” Deku actually pales. “I… I can’t! I-”
“No, Katsuki is right.” Shouto walks around him. “You haven’t taken a voluntary break in… what, a year?”

“A… year and a half.” Deku mumbles.
Katsuki closes his eyes, lifts up a hand to smack them both, but then shakes his head. “You’re both fucking insane.” The doors open and Katsuki walks inside. After a few seconds he groans, reaches out, and drags Shouto and Deku in by the wrist when they just /stand/ there.
The ride to his floor is quiet, but they all exit together and walk toward his office. Shouto puts a hand on Katsuki’s wrist and pauses.
“I’m going to check on the sidekicks first,” He says. “I have a weird feeling today.” Katsuki nods and watches him go off toward the break room. Deku shuffles his feet, then bites his lip.
With a roll of his eyes, Katsuki pushes him down the hall. “Go /after/ him, /moron./” Deku doesn’t hesitate again.

A moment passes where Katsuki watches the two of them catch up to each other and take the corner together, then he lets out a slow, steady breath.
“God those two just need to /fuck/ already.” He rubs at one of his cheeks and turns back to his office door, swinging it open before throwing his bag on the floor. When he looks up, he freezes.

Kirishima is inside, leaning against his desk.
“Bakugo.” His voice is soft, happy almost. He’s dressed down in civilian clothes, hand tugging at the bag on his necklace.
Katsuki doesn’t respond at first. He wants to grab at nearest vase full of flowers and hurl it at Kirishima’s head, but that’s /Ember’s/ favorite vase. She goes out of her way to lock it up first when he turns his office into a tantrum room.
“Kirishima.” His voice sounds hollow. “Where’s your Hero?”

“Patrol.” Kirishima mutters. “He took some of the other sidekicks with him when I told him I wanted to talk to you.” He looks down and kicks his shoes against the carpet.
Closing his eyes, Katsuki shuts the door and counts to ten. When he’s done, he picks his bag up and walks around his desk. He wants to leave, to tell Kirshima to leave, to yell, to hit. He just… doesn’t want to do this.
He /never/ wants to know what happened.



He /has/ to know.
As he sits down, he puts his bag on the floor against his desk drawers. “You wanted to talk.” The words feel empty and yet still come out angry. There’s years of a boiling rage building up in his throat, one he thought he’d gotten over.
“Four /fucking/ years later, and you want to /talk./”
Kirishima looks down at the desk as he turns, chest facing Katsuki. “I’m sorry.” He whispers.
“Save it until the end.” He snarls. “Do you need a chair? Or is this going to be short?” It’s bitter and meaner than he intends, and Katsuki is /better than this/ but /fuck it./

Fuck Kirishima.
His throat hurts and he can feel his blood pressure rising, but he can’t move as he digs his nails into his palms.
“I’m okay to stand.” Kirishima says, soft and almost too quiet to hear. His sucks in a deep breath, so deep his shoulders push back and he stands up straighter. “Right, from the beginning.”
Katsuki leans back and waits, but it still takes a minute before Kirishima actually starts his story.

“So… do you remember why we broke up?” Kirishima asks, tugging hard at the cord on his neck.
“Yeah.” Katsuki crosses his ankles beneath the desk. “We grew apart and hardly saw one another anymore. We stopped having sex, going on dates, and then you got offered that position in Australia.'
'It was better for both of us, long distance would have only made us hate each other.”
Kirishima’s chuckle is sad and deep. “You really thought that?”

Katsuki doesn’t respond.
“I… wasn’t going to take the job. I wasn’t even going to bring it up, I’d already refused it in my head.” Kirishima admits.
“I didn’t realize we’d grown apart, I thought… I thought everything was fine. I knew we were Hero’s, our jobs came first and so did your rise to the top. I supported you, I...” He trails off, pulling the necklace off and twisting the cord tightly around his fingers.
It leaves marks.

A silence fills the air before Kirishima coughs and shakes his head. “So, when I contacted you, I told you I had a surprise for you, yeah?”

Katsuki nods. “Your job offer.”
Kirishima makes a pained noise before he shakes his head no. “That /wasn’t/ it. Like I said, I wasn’t going to bring it up. I had this… this whole thing planned.” He lets out another said laugh.
“But then you brought up how distant we’d gotten, and how it might have been better for us to split up. And I… I sort of blacked out, I think? A lot of that day is blurry, but I remember sitting there screaming in my own head about how wrong all of that felt.”
Swallowing, Katsuki rubs at his throat.

“But then I really thought about it, and you wouldn’t have taken that job if I hadn’t left, I knew that deep down. So I was selfish and made the choice for you.” He whispers.
“That’s not true!” Katsuki leans forward, ready to defend his past self, but a single look from Kirishima quiets him.
“You wouldn’t have. I knew you well enough back then, you were… god, Katsuki.” His voice sounds wet with oncoming tears. Katsuki chokes back his own emotions. “You were my everything, more than hero work, more than fame, it was just… me and you.”
His laughter is edging on hysterical now. “I wanted you to have everything, but I was going to drag you down with how I was going. You’d have tried to fight for us, and if you had you’d have never made number one.”
“Bullshit!” Katsuki’s hand slams on his desk. “You don’t fucking know that! And it wasn’t as important as-”
“Don’t I know that though?” Kirishima shouts back. “I was selfish, I took all the time off I could just to be close to you, I was dropping rapidly in rating. I didn’t…” He clamps his mouth shut and looks down at the bag in his hand.
The silence stretches again before it’s rattled out of place.
“When I left I was just… numb. Our breakup hit me by surprise and I… I thought if I left it would help clear my head. I didn’t mean to cut everyone off, I really didn’t! That was an accident!'
"But I knew that I needed space for my own health, and if I talked to anyone else it would have gotten back to you and that would have crushed me and I couldn’t… I didn’t want to turn into a stalker. So I… I spent a year in Australia and reinvented myself countless times."
Then Bruiser found me and dragged me to Wales and forced me to see a better therapist. By the time I realized just how badly I’d fucked up, it had been two years. I figured it was too late to reach out by then. "
"So I didn’t… I had Bruiser update me on if you guys were still alive every few weeks.”

Katsuki drags his nails over the top of the desk.
“I kept my old phone though, I still have it actually. In fact I keep paying the bill like it /matters./ I always said I’d just… call you guys, as soon as I was over it, but I...”

“… you were never over it.” Katsuki whispers.
Kirishima looks up, tears trickling down his cheeks before he wipes them away hurriedly.
“I was never over /you./” He whispers back. “I… it was the anniversary of our first date, when I told you I wanted to talk. I knew you didn’t remember, but I thought it would have been cute. Just… something to… if you’d even said yes.”
He laughs again, more tears falling down his face before he pulls open the little black bag.

“… what… are you talking about?” Katsuki thinks he knows, but he doesn’t want to put it into words. He doesn’t even want to put it into /thoughts./
Something glitters in the light as it drops into Kirishima’s palm and he squeezes his hand shut.
“I kept it, sort of like a sick reminder to how much I fucked up.” Kirishima admits. “My therapist, the one in Wales, told me that people who drastically reinvent themselves can sometimes turn it into a habit if they aren’t careful."
She said sometimes having a trinket or a reminder can keep you from falling into it, and hell, maybe she was wrong. But it… it kept me from shaving half my head and dying my hair blue sometimes.”
Katsuki scoots back in his chair. He’s getting too hot in this office. His throat is closing up.
“I don’t need it anymore, I’ll get something else. But I want you to have it. Blow it up, pawn it, I don’t care, but it’s… it’s heavy enough and you deserve to know why I took this so hard. I was going to ask.” Kirishima sets the item down on the desk.
It’s a thick black band with a strip of red and orange sunstones inlaid the whole way around. There’s no mistaking it for anything other than an engagement ring.
Kirishima shakes his head. “… would you… would you have said-”

“Get out.” Katsuki whispers, eyes still glued to the ring.

Kirishima doesn’t argue with him. He leaves and the door sounds like a gunshot when it clicks shut.

Katsuki just sits there and stares.

_*_*_
_*_*_

( CW: Blood, fights, crying is healthy )

“Kacchan?” Katsuki looks up from his hiding spot, though he can’t see the man calling him from this angle. “I know you’re in here.”
Deku’s footsteps are soft even after he shuts the door to the office. Katsuki sniffles, giving himself away from where he’s curled up beneath the desk in the leg space.

He hasn’t hidden away like this since high school, but sometimes hiding is the only way to deal with things.
It doesn’t take Deku long before he’s pulling the chair away from the desk and squatting down. “Oh… /Kacchan./” It’s both pity and understanding, and it hurts to hear.
“Shut the fuck up.” Katsuki hisses, wiping away the long dried tears. “You don’t even know what fucking happened.” Deku makes a face that says he’s guilty.

That he /did/ know.

Katsuki kicks him hard in the shin and Deku yelps and falls backwards onto his ass.
“Fuck you! How long have you known then? Huh? How long have you known he was going to ask me to marry him and that I fucking /broke/ him so bad that he lost his god damn mind?!” His voice slowly rises the more he goes on until he’s shouting, his throat aching from his own volume.
“How /long?/”

“I just found out today.” Deku doesn’t raise his voice and it only fuels Katsuki’s anger. “Bruiser told me. Kirishima locked himself in the training room and we heard a lot of crashing. I thought maybe Bruiser could talk some sense into him and-”
Katsuki swings a fist out and misses when Deku scrambles back. It’s enough to get him out from beneath the desk.

“Kacchan, calm down!” Deku scolds.
“Fuck you! Fuck Bruiser! This isn’t his business!” He gets to his feet when Deku does, swinging another fist and having it blocked.
“It /is/ his business!” Deku ducks another hit and takes a kick to the leg. The punches don’t have heat to them, but they’ll still leave a mark. “Bruiser is Kirshima’s Hero! He-”

“/I/ should be his Hero!” Katsuki shouts as he lets off as explosion near Deku’s shoulder.
It catches his shirt on fire, but Deku puts it out in a blur.

“This isn’t your fault!” Deku shouts.
“Are you fucking kidding me? I’m the reason he isn’t a Hero anymore! I ruined his dream!” Katsuki roars, fist finally connecting with Deku’s jaw. Blood catches on teeth and tongue, and Deku stumbles back.
Katsuki freezes, staring as Deku, as /Izuku/, wipes the back of his hand over lips. They come away bloody. Katsuki lets out a startled breath.

He didn’t mean to do that oh god he didn’t mean to he-
Izuku looks up and his defensive stance drops before he takes a few steps into Katsuki’s space and cups his face in both hands. “Hey, Kacchan, look at me.” At first he refuses, but then Deku crowds in even closer. “/Katsuki./”
Tears blur his vision and fall down his cheeks, but Izuku simply wipes them away with his thumb.

“I fucked up /everything./” Katsuki says around his attempt to choke off a sob.
Izuku hushes him, shaking his head no. “This isn’t your fault any more than it is Kirishima’s. He should have been open with you, he shouldn’t have kept quiet. He was caught off guard, but he also cut off his support group.”
Izuku keeps wiping away tears despite the blood still trickling off his cut tongue. “If his mental health was bad enough that he thought vanishing was a good idea, then he needed to get away. He was spiraling and he left and got help.”
Katsuki stops trying to hold back his tears, his shoulders buckling forward before he lets out a wail.

Fuck it, right?
Izuku pulls him in and rubs his back while soft, soothing noises rumble from his chest. He holds Katsuki through the worst of it, because on he really can at this point. They haven’t been this close since Kirishima left the first time, it’s nostalgic and dumb.
But Katsuki’s fists clench in Izuku’s shirt and he lets himself crumble and be built back up.

“I’ve got you,” Izuku whispers. “I’ll always have you.” Katsuki nods, knowing it’s true.
He was a horrible teenager, but he’s gotten over himself with the help of someone who has known him since birth. Someone he calls family in a weird, backwards sort of way. No matter how much they bicker, no matter their animosity towards one another, they’ll always be connected.
It takes a while, but eventually all the raw emotion bleeds out of Katsuki and drips through the floor. Izuku’s shirt is ruined, but he doesn’t care as he puts Katsuki in his desk chair and runs off to get him a glass of water.
He sticks around to clean Katsuki up and make sure he drinks the water, then he offers a watery smile.

“Are you going to be okay?” Izuku asks, a soft smile on his face as he wipes away his own tears. Of /course/ he’d start crying /after/ Katsuki was finished.
“That’s a stupid fucking question.” He sets the half empty glass on his desk and looks over at the ring. He reaches out before he can help himself, plucking it up and twisting it around to admire the stones.

Izuku hums. “It’s pretty.” He says awkwardly.
“Fuck you.” Katsuki puts no heat into it. “It’s manly.” His ring finger dances around the band and he has to fight not to shove it on. “What the fuck am I supposed to do with this?” He asks, flipping it back and forth on his thumb.
Izuku shrugs. “Do you want to throw it away?” He reaches for it, but Katsuki snatches it closer to his chest.
“No, fuck you.” He opens the top drawer of his desk and sets it next to the various dumb gifts he keeps in his office.
A stress ball from Ember, a set of dry erase markers from Izuku, a Ground Zero rubber duck Shouto got him from a crappy crane machine in an arcade. There are others, but the ring looks at home there amount the clutter.

He takes a second before shutting the drawer.
“Which training room did Kirishima lock himself in?”

“Second floor, the public construction.” Izuku admits, standing up and tugging at the burnt edges of his shirt.
“Okay.” Katsuki takes another minute to breathe, then he stands up. “I’m gonna go fight him.” He’s already out the door by the time the words register inside Izuku’s head.

“Sure… wait Kacchan no!”

_*_*_
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