At first, no one noticed anything besides how irritable he was.
It wasn’t anything new; Bakugou had always been a touchy guy, yelling at anyone who touched him or even gave him a halfway sideways look. These levels were new though— he was louder, crueler, choosing to isolate himself and arrive seconds before class began or late than to walk the halls. He was the first one to shower and leave the dorm and the last one to go to bed. His class just assumed it was frustration with his less than stellar internship. They all unanimously, silently, decided to give him a little space.
It was when he snapped at Kirishima that they realized there was something wrong.
Bakugou had arrived early to class for once. Maybe that was an omen for things to come; none of them were sure.
But one moment Kirishima was wandering over and trying to spark up a conversation and the next he was on the floor, more taken aback by the sudden explosion than hurt.
All talking stopped.
Bakugou’s rough, uneven breathing sounded very loud in the silence.
“Bakubro, what the hell?” Kirishima said, pulling himself up.
“Don’t—” he hissed, fingers clutching his desk so tight they could all hear creaking. “Don’t.”
“Bakugou—” Kirishima said, his voice softer and more timid. “What did I—”
“You know what you did!” Bakugou yelled, slamming his hands on the table. Everyone around him flinched. “Fuck— fuck— ”
He stumbled to his feet, forgetting entirely about his bag. “Don’t fucking follow me.”
Slamming the door behind him, the class sat spellbound for a moment before half of them rushed over Kirishima, asking questions and pulling him to his feet.
Kirishima stared at the door, bewildered hurt plain across his face. “Nothing,” he said. “I just—I just did...normal things.”
“The hell,” Kaminari said from his seat. “Was that?”
None of them had an answer.
A wild Tony appears!
Welcome to the fic. As someone who seeks out fics about dark topics when I'm feeling panicky or particularly shitty about myself, I'd like to at least offer random coping skills and shit at the end. So. Yeah.
Cross your wrists in front of you and then fold them up under so your hands are under your chest. Cross the opposite leg of whatever thumb is on top over your other leg and hold for a few seconds and the loosen. Repeat as needed.
Breathe in for 4, hold for 4, breathe out for 4, hold for four.
“Oh, so you really are a —”
“Stop struggling. It won’t make a difference.”
“Yeah, sweetheart, so good, so good —”
Bakugou slammed a punch into the wall, his fist easily eating into the drywall as the words pounded in his ears. He could still feel those hands on him, that mouth, that—
His ears rung and he realized he was on his knees and suddenly he was back there, trapped, forced to his knees—
He slammed his other fist into the wall.
Until all that filled his head was the buzzing of violence and the blood dripping from his scarred hands.
Down the hall, a door opened and he stumbled away, taking off blindly for the dorms where he could hide, hide, hide until no one could find him and take away the buzzing in his lungs, in his hands, in his heart ever again.
Self talk, anxiety, obsessions, etc
-That thought isn't helpful right now.
-Now is not the time to think about it. I can think about it later.
-This is irrational
-I won't argue with an irrational thought.
-This is not an emergency. I can slow down and think clearly about what I need.
-This feels threatening and urgent, but it really isn't
-I don't have to be perfect to be okay
-I don't have to figure out this question. The best thing to do is just drop it
-It's okay to make mistakes
-I know from past experiences that these fears are irrational
-I have to take risks in order to be free. I'm willing to take this risk
-It's okay I just had [this thought/mental image] and it doesn't mean anything. I don't have to pay attention to it
-I'm ready to move on now
-I can handle being wrong
-I don't have to suffer like this. I deserve to be comfortable
-That's not my responsibility
-That's not my problem
-I've done the best I can
-It's good practice to let go of this worry. I want to practice.
Count in rounds of whatever number you want can help. I like to do 4 and 8, some people like different numbers. Breathe in and out with the numbers.
Chapter 3: it's an awkward sort of feeling when no one knows what to do
Class 1-A, minus one and a quarter members (grape boy who?), congregated in Momo’s room.
The girls were mostly sprawled across the bed, Ochako thrown over Tooru and Jirou’s legs. Mina had her rightful place in the center of them all. Momo perched on the edge of her bed while Tsuyu was perched in Momo’s egg shaped chair.
The boys had claimed the floor, with Deku curled up in Momo’s desk chair.
“...what exactly did you say?” Mina asked Kirishima, who sat against the bed.
“Nothing,” Kirishima said. “Outside of the usual, I mean.”
“Elaborate,” said Jirou, eyes narrowing.
Kirishima sighed. “‘Hey, Bakubro! Looking manly as always. Of course, you’d look even manlier with me on your arm.’ And then I touched his shoulder.”
“And he just—” Jirou asked.
“Yeah,” said Kirishima, nodding.
They were quiet for a moment.
“Something happened him during his internship,” Tokoyami said, surprisingly. Everyone turned to look at the normally recalcitrant teen. “That much is obvious.”
“But what?” Izuku asked.
No one could answer.
Take a moment to go for a walk. If you see something nice or find a good texture, let yourself rest and admire it, taking it all in before moving on.
Chapter 4: push it
Bakugou snuck into the gym at nine and hadn’t left since then.
The clock glowed an ugly ruby red up on the far wall, protected as it was by metal bars. One in the morning.
Sweat poured off him, glimmering sickly in the artificial lights.
He’d thrown up twice, had stumbled to wheeze and gasp, ribs aching, more times than he cared to count. He knew how dangerous it was to exercise with a binder and how that went double to exercise like this— going and going and going and going until there was nothing left, not even thoughts and he lay curled in the darkness of the locker room, having picked the lock and refastened it before falling into sleep.
Slamming his bruised and scraped fist into the punching bags, Bakugou had to snort back a bitter laugh at that. Sleep.
He didn’t know the last time he’d slept for more than an hour or so.
Bakugou kept throwing punch after punch, hating himself as they grew steadily messier and messier until the buzzing in his head was overcome by fogginess and oh wow, that was the ground.
He stared up at the ceiling, empty stomach twisting as his limbs trembled.
In a few minutes he’d get up again.
His hand slammed painfully against the ground as he wheezed, hating himself and hating his fucking weakness.
Chapter 5: the sound of silence
Bakugou barely made it to class before Aizawa did. Face pale with lack of sleep, scorch marks peppering unchanged clothes, he flopped into his seat and glared at the wall, daring anyone to say a word to him.
After yesterday, no one did.
The weight of silence seemed to press down on all of them, oppressive and painting the room darker somehow, grittier. It felt as if one word could spark an explosion.
Aizawa’s entrance dispelled it a bit, breaths finally flowing in and out of lungs as designed and clothes rustling as people leaned over to grab notebooks or whisper to their friends.
Bakugou remained still, one leg thrown over the other and arms crossed as he attempted to glare a hole into the wall.
The class pretended to not notice him breaking pencil after pencil or the creaking of his desk as the period went on.
When the class finally ended and they had a break, they all watched as Bakugou was the first to rise and first out the door, the oppressive silence shrouding the room once more.
“We need to talk to him,” Midoriya finally said.
No one answered, but they all knew it was true.
Out in the hallway came a distant yelling.
Maybe sooner rather than later.
Bakugou counted the pills two by two, the soft clinking of the solid white capsules almost comforting as the transferred from his palm to his blanket.
He wasn’t sure what he would do once he finished counting.
He was just so...tired.
Leaving aside the one, he poured the rest into the bottle and set it in his lap. He picked up the outlier and turned it over in his hand, letting his thumb trace over it. It was smooth, not soft but— sleek.
He slowly brought it up to his mouth.
No flavor at first and then— bitterness. Like he was eating chalk. He barely shaved any of it away and eventually the flavor moved from disgusting to tolerable, it itching his tongue like tiny sparks of electricity.
He dropped it.
Staring at the bottle in his lap, with trembling fingers he picked it up and lobbed it across the room, watching as it struck the wall near the door and fell.
He picked up the pill and curled his fist around it, falling under the blankets even though he hadn’t exercised that night and even though he still had homework from a day of people staring at him and whispering behind his back—
He chased sleep.
me? project on bakugou at 1:36 am in the morning?
please drink some water, sit up straight, and take a breath.
color. do something you like.
Chapter 7: the stars glitter above me (while alone i search for dreams)
Bakugou wasn’t the only one struggling to sleep that night.
Sitting on the balcony of his dorm room, Midoriya Izuku stared at the night sky, barely feeling the cold as his mind whirled.
He couldn’t figure out what the hell was wrong with Kacchan.
Fingers curling around the cold metal, he sighed tiredly, eyes automatically drawing constellations across the sky.
It couldn’t have just been the internship, could it? Sure, it must have sucked having your hair rearranged against your will and to not get as much out of it as you wanted but…
That...didn’t make sense. Nothing was adding up.
Bakugou was so strong . No matter what he had done to him, Izuku could never really hate him. It was so obvious that Bakugou was doing it to convince himself that he was strong enough to live up to everyone’s expectations that even though it stung, it never really hurt all that bad. And...Izuku knew that didn’t make it better. He knew Kacchan shouldn’t have—
But when he’d seen the panicked look for a split second in Kacchan’s eyes when he realized Izuku was going to U.A. with him, he couldn’t hold any ill will against him.
Not when he knew what Bakugou was so afraid of everyone finding out.
He couldn’t figure Kacchan out. Bakugou had gone into his protective shell and forced everyone out— violently, in Kirishima’s case. After years of knowing Bakugou, he knew that none of them could force Kacchan to just say what was eating at him.
It had been almost two weeks since internships had ended and the semester’s end was coming faster and faster.
They needed to find out what was wrong before the summer began.
...but how could they get Bakugou to talk?
The stars glittered coldly but gave him no answers.
“God, I’m so fucking tired of ‘Bakugou this, Bakugou that!’”
The room fell silent.
“Dude—” Kaminari said, eyes narrowing.
“Don’t fucking ‘dude’ me.”
Jirou leaned forward. “This is our classmate. We’d be worried if anyone else—”
“Well, no one else is!” she shouted. “The only one acting like this is fucking ‘Lord Explodoshit’, as always.”
“What is wrong with you?” Mina asked. “This isn’t like you—”
“Well, maybe it’s because Bakugou treated me like less than dirt today,” she said, her voice shaking. They all fell quiet. “I don’t— I don’t give a shit what reason he has. He must have known I was— insecure about…” she drifted off.
“Tooru,” Midoriya said, looking tired. He’d been the one to call the one a.m. meeting. “Bakugou says shit to make people ignore how he’s actually feeling. It doesn’t make what he said any better, but—”
“I fucking understand,” Tooru said. Her clothes wrinkled a bit as she seemed to pull a knee up to her chest. “I want to be so fucking angry with him but—”
She didn’t finish but they all knew what she meant. No matter how abrasive and dickish Bakugou had been over the last few weeks, they could all see the raw pain and anger practically swimming off his shoulders.
“We need to figure out how to get him to talk,” Midoriya said, drawing their attention back to him. “The sooner we figure this out, the sooner Kacchan will be back to normal. Right?”
“It’s not that simple,” Shouji said after a beat. “What if it’s something...worse...than we expect?”
“What do we even expect?” Ochako asked, fiddling with her pajama top. “We don’t even have a clue.”
“Perhaps a professor,” Shouji offered. “There is a therapist on staff that could talk to Bakugou. I’m surprised he hasn’t been called in.”
“Maybe he has,” Kaminari said with a shrug. “Would he even go?”
“...no,” Momo said. “I don’t think he would.”
“There has to be something we can do,” Satou said, looking a little helpless. “Right?”
“I’m sure there’s something we can do,” Iida said, his voice trying to be upbeat but deflating in the face of uncertainty. “I’m sure of it.”
The clock ticked towards two.
How to make a grounding box:
-Get a box or basket or something that can hold things
-Decorate it: stickers, photos, glitter, paint, crayon
-Add sensory things like candles, essential oils, soaps, candy, nice textures
-Distraction technique list
-A list of people you can call
-Emergency plan (i.e. one for self harm, suicide, flashbacks, etc)
-Small notebook or sketchbook
-Small food things like gum, candy, chocolate
-Stim toys or things to fiddle with
It hurt it hurt it hurt it hurt —
Bakugou swore loudly as his bed caught on fire, dizzily stumbling out of it as he threw up on the floor, head aching.
He could still feel it—
Not now. Fuck—
He blearily reached for the fire extinguisher and put out the flames. For a moment he stood, weaving, before collapsing back down to his knees, inches from the sick. He pressed his forehead to the floor, shaking, before realizing that kneeling was a really bad idea.
Choking against the non-existent cock, he scrambled back, slamming into his door. He trembled there for god knew how long until he shoved himself to his feet, still feeling the weight of—
He cleaned up what he could and stumbled out of his dorm. Somehow, he made it to the common room and collapsed there, his body aching with the memory of the man’s body and the bitter taste of cum in his mouth.
This is why you don’t sleep in a bed anymore, you fucking idiot.
He’d just— fuck, he’d just wanted to fucking prove to himself he could and now his fucking mattress was ruined and he was still—
Still on this fucking couch with nothing but his own shaking hands and the memory of someone else fucking moving inside him and suddenly he wanted to die again, the anger turning rapidly into a fire.
But he was too tired to move and his body felt like three elephants were sitting on it and he couldn’t find the will to move so he just lay there, eyes tracing the ceiling blankly as he tried to forget the taste of another man.
He’d just wanted a fucking nap before this week’s night training but he couldn’t even have that.
God, had he really been so awful to Deku that he deserved—
His hands shook. He knew that answer.
He couldn’t let the guilt catch him, not now (not ever).
Only three fucking hours until training.
Bakugou didn’t want to move ever again.
Bakugou did a lot of things he didn’t want to do.
Two hours and fifty eight minutes.
I really like this post about flashbacks.
Chapter 10: obligatory chatfic chapter
XxDomQueenxX: I hate you all
Not A Furry: …
Not A Furry: kinky
Thirteen: did anyone else see smoke coming from 1as dorm
XxDomQueenxX: it was prbly just bakubitch blowing some shit up again
Thirteen: ...should we do anything?
XxDomQueenxX: is there fire? no
All Right!: THAT DOESN’T SEEM LIKE A VERY RESPONSIBLE LEADERSHIP PATH, MIDNIGHT
XxDomQueenxX: i’m being forced 2 stay out in the cold and watch a bunch of kiddies beat each up. It’d be entertainig if it didn’t cut into my ‘me’ time. responsbility my ass
tired gay: on the topic of bakugou, he’s been acting weird
Catholic Guilt: He has?
Not A Furry: ken i know youre about observant as a rock sometimes but come on
RT IF YOUR GAY: He’s been acting up in my classes for sure!
Bloody Nose: Rt if you agree
XxDomQueenxX : rt
All Right!: RT
tired gay: rt
Bob the Builder: rt
Not A Furry: rt
tired gay: wait hold on
tired gay: half of you dont even have a class with him
Bloody Nose: He made one of my kids cry yesterday. He hasn’t done that in months.
tired gay : ….
tired gay: okay fair
All Right!: SHOULD WE SAY SOMETHING TO HIM?
XxDomQueenxX: i say wait. See if itsj ust him being a bitch abt his hiar
Bloody Nose: ...hiar.
XxDomQueenxX: OH FUCK
Bob the Builder: hiar
tired gay: hiar
XxDomQueenxX: I hate you all
Not A Furry: …
Not A Furry: kinky
-XxDomQueenxX left the chat-
-Your Boss added XxDomQueenxX to NOT PAID ENOUGH FOR THIS chat-
tired gay: i need a drink
tired gay: or a soft fucking bed
RT IF YOUR GAY: ;)
RT IF YOUR GAY: That can be arranged
Ghoul: Damn it Hizashi.
Your Boss: Someone make sure Bakugou isn’t burning down his dorm
Your Boss: ....
Your Boss: ...again
McCree: Not it.
All Right!: NOT IT
XxDomQueenxX: NOT IT
Ghoul: Not it
RT IF YOUR GAY: NOT IT
Bloody Nose: not it
Catholic Guilt: Not It.
Not A Furry: FUCK NO
God: Not it
Bob the Builder : NOOOT IIIT
Your Boss: Not it
Thirteen: Not it!
tired gay: wait-
tired gay: fuck
All Right!- All Might
tired gay- Aizawa
Catholic Guilt- Ken Ishiyama
Bloody Nose- Blood King
RT IF YOUR GAY- Present Mic
Bob the Builder- Power Loader
Not A Furry- Hound Dog
God- Recovery Girl
Your Boss- Nezu
Bakugou’s room was empty. But even without the boy in question, the room gave Aizawa enough to set off alarms in the back of his head.
The window was cracked a bit, explaining the smoke. The bed was torn apart, even ignoring the discarded fire extinguisher and its contents spread all over the bed and the sick stench of burning polymer, wool, and cotton. Someone—Bakugou— had obviously thrown up and failed to clean it up properly. The door was scorched.
Something had happened here and he doubted it was a simple fit of anger, even if Bakugou had happened to be the type. Despite what half the staff seemed to think, Bakugou’s anger had a purpose, even if it was just to shield some other emotion or reaction.
Aizawa may be perpetually tired, but he wasn’t blind .
Though, looking around the room, he began to wonder if he was.
There was something wrong.
He could feel it in his bones.
happy halloween, happy all saint's day, and merry samhain!
comments make me cry tears of joy
those of you who comment regularly, you have a special place in my heart
you know who you are
Satou narrowed his eyes as Bakugou shoved his way past him, hands sequestered deep inside his baggy pockets. He looked awful.
“Hey, Bakugou—” he started, only for the boy to turn on him with a look of hellfire. Satou, shaken, forced himself not to take a step back as Bakugou looked away.
But as Satou turned his attention back to an irritated Midnight, he realized there had been something else too in those eyes.
It shook him more than the anger had.
“—Bakugou, Hagakure—” Midnight called. Satou scuffed his boot at the grass, trying to wrap his head around what that look had meant. “—Satou. Get your asses—”
Satou’s head shot up. She didn’t mean that he was in the same group as—
“Candy Queen, get the fuck over here,” Bakugou snapped, the bags under his eyes deep enough to look more like bruises.
Satou shuffled over, giving a little smile to Tooru, who appeared to be crossing her arms based on her gloves.
“So this is what we’re gonna fucking do—” Bakugou said, almost weaving where he stood.
They listened, throwing long glances at each other despite Tooru’s invisibility. It was obvious that Bakugou could hardly stand and yet—
“Bakugou, maybe you should sit this one out,” Satou started, his voice low and calm like he would use to soothe one of his foster sisters after a nightmare.
“Why the fuck would I do that?” Bakugou snapped, glaring at them through bruised eyes. Despite the bite in his words, his arms were wrapped around his chest as he shivered in the cold. Satou never thought of Bakugou as anything but impossibly, incredibly strong, but standing there, the wind blowing leaves through the forest floor, he seemed…
Like one touch could shatter him.
“You look sick,” Tooru finally said.
“—fucking acting like you fucking care, who the fuck gives a shit,” Bakugou roared as Satou’s ears finally stopped ringing loud enough that he couldn’t hear. “Do you think I can’t fucking handle—”
“Bakugou!” Satou snapped. Bakugou turned on him and he swallowed but stood firm. “That’s enough. She’s just worried.”
Bakugou seemed to realize the entire clearing had gone dead silent during his ranting and shoved his hands in his pockets. His eyes darted from person to person before he kicked a rock, backing away from them.
“Like I give a shit,” he snarled. “You think I’m sick? Fine. Be a man down. Have fun losing.”
He took off for the dorms before anyone could even breathe.
It wasn’t till later that Satou realized there had been desperate, furious tears in Bakugou’s eyes.
I slept through two classes, got a black eye, went to a Halloween party while severely dissociated, then went to this panel on undocumented immigration where I somehow got the bright idea to talk about my uncle who is from Mexico and then worried my friend bc I was shaking afterwards bc I'm a coward, and then realized I had way too much homework to finish by midnight after a nice long chat with said friend abt life.
It is now 3 am.
Comments are nice.
Chapter 13: DO YOU HAVE A BLOCK FOR A HEAD CEMENTOSS
-tired gay left the group-
Group Chat → tired gay, XxDomQueenxX, Catholic Guilt
tired gay: couldn’t find bakugou
tired gay: did he show up for class
XxDomQueenxX: show up 2 class? You could fucking say that
tired gay: what do u mean
XxDomQueenxX: explodoshit blew up on hagakure and stomped off
XxDomQueenxX: idk where
tired gay: and you didn’t have anyone follow him?
tired gay: what the fuck
Catholic Guilt: We had a class to teach. He was heading for the dorms so I assumed he would be fine until we can call him to one of our offices.
Catholic Guilt: I already emailed him.
tired gay: you know what fuck it
tired gay: im going to go find him because apparently no one else on staff gives a shit about the students
Catholic Guilt: I care about my students.
tired gay: funny way of showing it
tired gay: have any of you even bothered asking him why he’s acting so
XxDomQueenxX: so what
tired gay: i shouldn’t even have to fucking answer that
tired gay: i have a student to find
tired gay: have a nice night
-tired gay left the group-
The teachers *do* care they just...
*waves hands awkwardly*
if you are having those thoughts where they just keep running around in your head and you keep thinking of awful shit that's gonna happen because of it
making a list of everything that could happen and then eliminating the ones that are less likely to happen until you are left with what's most likely to happen can help
usually you are thinking things will be worse than they ultimately end up being
this is called catastrophic thinking
Chapter 14: check out
warning for suicidal ideation
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Bakugou watched as tiny sparks raced across his palm. He’d mastered this control exercise years ago. It had been something else for the teachers to praise and for his classmates to coo over.
He closed his fist, the sparks tingling painfully against uncalloused skin.
He let his hand drop.
The gym was quiet. Dark. He hadn’t bothered turning on the light when he came in and soon discarded his shirt, feeling stifled. Rare were the times that he dared to just wear his half binder but he could barely stand anything on his skin at the moment.
His breath echoed in the still gym as he rose, a little unsteady but determined. He took off for the indoor track, his feet quickly finding a rhythm as his brain drifted away.
When he finally stopped what felt like hours later, he wasn’t prepared for the sudden, oppressive silence that filled the gym. The wheezing of his lungs and the rattling of phlegm in his throat barely made an impact on the quiet.
He swore softly, head spinning as he sunk to the ground. Pulling at his binder, he sucked in air. His mood plummeted out of nowhere and suddenly his wrists were itching and he was aching for something he barely acknowledged to himself.
God , he just—
One fucking night. That’s all he was asking for. One fucking night when he could pretend that he was fucking fine and nothing had happened. One night where he didn’t want to see his blood turn everything red or ache for oblivion. One fucking night when he didn’t battle terror and anger in equal turn until he didn’t know what was up and what was down and whether he fucking deserved it—
His fingers pulled away from his arms with a quiet squelch of blood. He buried his head in his hands, bloody fingernails pressing crescent moons into his forehead.
“As you wish.”
He screamed, anger, grief, frustration all tumbling out of him as he punched himself over and over, as if he was Him, as if by hitting himself he’d be— he didn’t fucking know. He didn’t fucking know.
The moon caressed him as he swore, anger and shame twisted in his gut.
He smelled something burning.
He looked up. HIs hands were covering his ears and— oh . That was his hair.
For a moment, he thought about just— making an explosion. It would kill him, probably. It’d be easy.
He sat there for a long time.
The sun broke through the windows.
Bakugou got up and shuffled off to his dorm room.
Aizawa watched Bakugou through class. He still had no idea where the kid had run off to the night before. No one had seen him after his meltdown in class until he’d staggered in, ten minutes late, to class.
He looked, if possible, worse than the day before. There were bags a mile deep under his eyes and he was skittish, jumping at slight noises with his hands sparking. His eyes were filled with a rage so complete it almost shook him until he looked farther and saw the despair and hopelessness that did not belong on Bakugou Katsuki’s face.
Bakugou Katsuki was not hopeless.
When homeroom ended, he pulled Bakugou aside as half the class left to get water or prepare for the next course.
“Bakugou? May I talk to you?” he asked.
Bakugou shrugged. “You are right now.”
Aizawa raised an eyebrow. “Let’s move to the hallway.”
Kicking at some invisible pebble, Bakugou followed him out.
The door shut behind them and suddenly they were alone, the hallway eerily quiet.
“What’s wrong?” Aizawa said, taking the most direct route.
Bakugou immediately stiffened, his eyes narrowing. “Nothing.”
“That’s why I found your room in shambles and you missing?”
“What is this?” Bakugou snapped. “The fucking Spanish Inquisition—”
“Bakugou, please,” Aizawa said, reaching out as Bakugou moved to storm away. He blinked as Bakugou flinched violently, nearly falling. “Bakugou—”
“Get the fuck away from me,” Bakugou snapped, his hands sparking violently as he breathed, chest rising and falling with a sharpness like the edge of a knife.His eyes darted around the corridor, as if identifying exits and weak points.
“Bakugou, I’m not going to hurt you—”
“Get off me!” he shrieked as fire created a barrier between them.
Through the smoke, Aizawa heard the sound of unsteady footsteps speeding away. “Bakugou!”
He dodged through the smoke, cursing himself for not using his quirk before Bakugou did.
Swearing, he burst forward into the clear part of the hallway only to find it empty.
Behind him, the students of 1-A filed into the doorway as he turned, the smoke clearing.
“Sir?” Midoriya asked.
“Get back in the room,” Aizawa said, rubbing the bags under his eyes and feeling them somehow deepen. “Just— go.”
Midoriya and Kirishima were the only ones who stayed outside. Aizawa, phone out from texting some of the other teachers about the situation, looked them both over.
“We’re worried about Kacchan,” Midoriya said, glancing at Kirishima, who nodded.
“There are teachers looking for him now,” said Aizawa. “He’ll be fine.”
“Why was he yelling?” Kirishima asked, eyes narrowed and cold— cold. “It sounded like he was—”
Aizawa sighed. “Unfortunately, that is none of you—”
“I’m his best friend!” Kirishima snapped. “If he’s hurting, it is my business.”
“I grew up with Kacchan,” said Midoriya. “Maybe I can—”
“If there’s something about him that you can tell me,” said Aizawa. “That would be appreciated. If you have even the slightest idea what may be causing this, that would also be appreciated. But not here. ”
“There’s— something,” the boys said together.
“My office then.”
They followed him through the slightly smoky halls.
So this is a cool and useful thing I was given the other day
Sorry for the lack of an update the other day. Shit went majorly south at my house and I'm trying to scrape my life back together. Hopefully, I can get it figured it. In the mean time, I'm alive so that's always a blessing.
But yeah. This chapter was hard to write but I hope it comes across well!
I literally feel so happy whenever I see a comment, kudo, or bookmark and I like happy flap whenever I see repeat reviewers. One of these days I'll have to give y'all a shoutout bc you are so good and I just. Yeah.
Anyway, that's enough sappy shit.
Midoriya was stiff, fingers curled over his knees as he watched Aizawa. Beside him, Kirishima was wound tight, a different sort of stiff.
The words hung between them like a knife spinning through the air towards its mark.
“This is concerning,” said Aizawa, rubbing his eyes. “You say this began after internships?”
Both boys nodded.
“I’ll look into it,” he said, already planning to call Best Jeanist and Bakugou’s parents. “Thank you for coming to me.”
Still looking a little pale and quiet, Kirishima shrugged. Midoriya just looked away.
The silence was awkward.
The atmosphere more so.
For a moment they sat, none of them looking at each other until Aizawa sighed, standing. “I will join the search for Bakugou,” he said. “Go back to class.”
“Yes sir,” said Midoriya, Kirishima echoing him.
They were mostly out the door when Aizawa spoke up.
“Thank you,” he said, the words exhausted.
Neither boy said anything but hurried out.
The door snapped shut and Aizawa rubbed his temples, the exhaustion settling in his veins like caramel or maybe molasses.
For a long moment, he sat, thoughts twisting and curling tightly in his head. He stood.
He had to help find Bakugou and figure out what the hell was going on.
The words felt repetitive.
He hoped he wouldn’t have to think them ever again.
Don't be afraid to make vent art, even if you are the shittiest artist on the planet. It can help. A lot. Even stuff like text art can help a lot.
He ran and ran and ran and ran until he was face down in the dewy grass, his fingers curled helplessly into his hair as he threw up nothing.
It was raining.
He tried to push himself to his feet again but he just stumbled, knees slamming into the squishy earth like stones dropping into a pond.
Wheezing, he pulled at his binder from where it clung to him, almost shrinkwrapped in the presence of rain.
As the adrenaline faded and energy warped into shaking, he realized just how much his chest hurt.
His ears rung with the pain as light darted across the sky. A moment later, he felt the earth tremble and a distant (for him) boom. Thunder.
He needed to move and yet he couldn’t find the strength so he stayed, fingers curled into the grass that was more mud and eyes burning and desperation warring with fear warring with fury in his heart.
A sob tried to break forth from deep inside him but for once it wasn’t Bakugou that stopped it but his ribs.
Holding them, he pressed his head to the earth as the heavens roared above him.
If you have essential oils or something that could substitute in for them, take a moment to really feel and look at the bottle and then smell the oil. Scents can be a powerful grounding tool.
Thunder crashed around U.A. as rain lashed the windows.
“What did Aizawa say?” Tooru asked as they huddled around Izuku’s desk, ignoring the random flashes that danced across the glass panes.
“That he’ll look into it,” Kirishima said. There was a trace of bitterness in his voice that made them all pause. “And that he was going to look for Bakugou.”
“Is that why none of the teachers are here?” Mina asked, wrapping her arms tightly around her chest. She flinched as a particularly loud thunderclap shook the room.
“Probably,” Momo said.
“You’d think a bunch of pro heroes would have found him already,” said Kaminari, flicking a pencil so it rolled halfway up the desk and came back down to be flicked again.
“But this is Bakugou ,” Tooru said. “Since when has anyone been able to control him?”
“Best Jeanist did,” Satou said, speaking up. They turned to look at him. “His hair.”
“I’m surprised the teachers aren’t bowing at his feet and asking how he did it,” Jirou snorted, twisting her earjack around one finger. Despite the nonchalance of her voice, her face was tight with concern.
“Wait-” said Midoriya. “That’s it.”
“What’s it?” several voices said.
“Bakugou started acting weird after internships, right?” said Midoriya. “And Best Jeanist was able to mess with his hair— and Bakugou is actually really protective over it.”
“Really?” said Ochako, surprised.
“Really,” said Midoriya with a tiny nod. “What if— Best Jeanist did something? To make Bakugou act like this.”
“Best Jeanist is a top hero,” Kaminari protested.
“So is my father,” Todoroki said, making half the class turn to him. “That doesn’t stop him.”
No one spoke for a moment.
“But Best Jeanist —” Kaminari said again.
“It’s the only lead we have,” Momo said. “Has anyone been keeping track of various symptoms and reactions Bakugou has had?”
“He’s really jumpy,” Satou offered.
“He looks like he hasn’t slept in days,” Tsuyu added with a short ‘kero’.
Kaminari tapped his pencil against the desk. “He’s super touchy about being touched— more than normal I mean.”
“His temper is worse as well,” Iida added.
“He’s isolating himself,” Momo murmured.
“I haven’t seen him eat in days,” Kirishima finally said. “Not even those peppers he likes.”
“I still can’t believe Bakugou straight up eats peppers,” Jirou muttered.
“He looks scared,” Midoriya said after a moment. “If you watch him long enough. It’s like...he’s trying to cover it all up with anger but…”
“Bakugou? Scared?” Kaminari snorted.
“He’s only human, Kami,” Satou said after a moment.
A sobering silence went through them then and they sat in quiet, the thunder rattling their desks and ruining the pattern of Kaminari’s tapping and rolling or the clicking of Iida’s pen.
“I don’t get it,” Tooru said after a long moment. “What could this mean?!”
“I think we’re gonna find out,” Kaminari said. “Now that the teacher’s are looking for him and he blew up on Aizawa like that.”
“What if it’s something bad?” Mina asked quietly.
“It already happened,” Shouji said in response. “We can’t change that it happened. We can only support him as we would support anyone else in the class.”
“I don’t get why you all care about him so much,” Mineta said with a shrug. “He’s just an angry asshole.”
“Shut the fuck up,” Tooru snapped at the same time as Kirishima. Half the room reared back at Kirishima’s swearing while the other half restrained from clapping.
Mineta opened his mouth to speak again when he froze, noticing the fury rolling off of Kirishima’s shoulders. He shut it with a snap and backed away, hiding behind Midoriya who shrugged him off.
“What if he’s hurt?” Satou asked. “Bakugou, I mean. He was so off at that night exercise thing—”
“He looked really sick,” Tooru added.
“He’s not dumb,” said Ochako. “I’m sure he would have went to the nurse if he was super sick or something.”
“I don’t know,” said Shouji. “He’s very independent.”
“But even Bakugou has to know that he can’t just fight off being sick,” said Mina. “Can he?”
They turned to Midoriya, who was worrying his lip.
“Midoriya?” Jirou asked.
“I— think he would. Not go, I mean,” said Midoriya. “I knew him through school but we haven’t been close since we were kids. But he’s always been, well, Bakugou . And he’s come to school hurt before and I don’t think he’d seen a doctor…”
“Fuck,” Tooru said, kicking a desk. “They better fucking find him.”
“They will,” Iida said, restraining himself from saying ‘language’. “They aren’t Pros for nothing.”
“It took Bakugou losing his shit on Aizawa and then two students concerned about him for them to do shit,” said Tooru with a snap. “I don’t know how much faith I have in them right now!”
Her words echoed through the room just as the loudest thunder clap yet made Kaminari’s pencil fall off his desk.
“I hope they find him soon,” Kirishima said, staring out the window.
“...me too,” one of them whispered.
Lightning danced across the sky.
Visualize a candle flame. As your thoughts come up, acknowledge them and then burn them in the fire. Let the ashes float away from you until your mind is calm.
Bakugou wasn’t sure where the line between unconsciousness and consciousness was, only that he’d been crossing between it for what felt like— fuck, hours? Days? Years?
He wasn’t sure when he’d stopped shivering or when the pain had faded into a quiet buzz in the back of his mind.
He wasn’t sure when he’d stopped caring.
Bakugou floated, his mind slipping between nothingness and the past and the future and everything in between.
Then something grabbed his arm and he screamed, explosions lighting up the night and sending sharp bursts of warmth through his hands and then someone was yelling, grabbing him and was back there, hands on his wrists as they were wrenched up, quirk suppression bands shoved on them roughly —
And then He was there, hands too big, too rough too gentle and he wanted to throw up as fear sprinted up his spine at the sound of a zipper falling as if some primal part of him knew what was coming even if his conscious mind didn’t yet understand.
“Fuck, he’s ice cold—”
One of those hands gripped his chin and Bakugou wanted to bite, to fight, to run as far away as he could before burning this whole fucking place to the ground but he could do nothing as He leaned in.
“Bakugou, stop fighting—”
He let out a panicked whine, more explosions bursting from him as he tried to shake the hands off his wrists, feeling that fucking weight in his mouth and then burning, ripping, tearing—
“So good, Katsuki, just relax. We’ll get to your next hole soon enough and that will be exquisite—”
“Bakugou! Relax, it’s us—”
Bakugou wanted to die.
He wanted this to end.
He wanted it to stop.
Please please please please please —
“We need to get him out of the rain.”
“He keeps fighting us!”
“Just pick him up and keep those hands away from you. He practically unconscious anyway.”
One hand scooped under him to pick him up and—
Bakugou wanted to sob as He picked him up as if he were a young child. He did as That Man leaned down and bit his lip and —
“NO!” Bakugou screamed, writhing in their arms. “No— get off, please, fuck, get off get off get off—”
“I’ll kill you!” he screeched, the panic rattling through his ribs and sending white hot pain between his eyes. “I’ll kill you, I will I can’t—”
“Aizawa, please, erase—”
Bakugou fought blindly, weakly as they brought him out of the rain, vision flickering between that dark room and the chaos of the storm, feeling Him moving in and out and in and out and his his hands and weight and he wanted to scream, to run, to rip open his wrists and leave this fucking world that would let this happen to him—
“Bakugou, please, just calm down—”
“Get him out of those wet clothes.”
As his shirt was being peeled off, Bakugou tumbled into unconsciousness with a broken, “Stop.”
“ Not again.”
3 ways to get out of a flashback
Nothing about Aizawa’s face gave away that something was wrong.
Every single one of them knew it anyway.
A cold chill seemed to swirl around their feet and into their lungs as Aizawa sat at his desk, choking back coffee until Cementoss arrived for their next class. Normally, when Aizawa subbed, they’d be set to some kind of task while the man took a nap but he’d left them to their own devices as he stared at his computer screen.
“Aizawa-sensei?” Mina finally asked, breaking the tense silence just as lightning sparked. She flinched at the thunder that followed but kept her eyes up on Aizawa.
“Did— was Bakugou found?” she asked.
The room went dead quiet as Kaminari stopped rolling his pencil.
A jolt of relief seemed to run through them all then, the coldness lifting from their lungs.
“Is he okay?” Kirishima asked, slamming his hands against the desk. “Where is he? Why didn’t he come back—”
Aizawa raised one hand, seeming to weigh his words then. A flicker of emotion crossed his face.
“He should be fine,” he said after a pause. “He is currently under the care of Recovery Girl.”
“He’s hurt?” Midoriya breathed.
“I want to see him,” Kirishima said, standing up. Beside him, Tooru did the same and then Satou and Jirou and suddenly the classroom was out of control.
They did so, watching as the scarf settled back around Aizawa’s neck.
“Bakugou needs rest ,” he said, the words tasting metallic in his mouth. “You will see him when he’s ready.”
The coldness swept back in. Even when Midoriya wrecked his body, they’d been able to see him.
Why couldn’t they see Bakugou?
It was then that a grim-looking Cementoss walked in, relieving Aizawa of his post. The normally slow man didn’t sprint — didn’t speed run or speed walk— and yet his steps seemed fast to the students, as if he were desperate to get somewhere.
The door shut and Cementoss told them to get out their books.
They did so but few were able to concentrate as rain filled the windows and thunder made their desks trembled.
Massaging your hand can actually release oxytocin, which can help anxiety.
Ask yourself, “What’s the worst that could happen?” Then, ask yourself, “How would I cope if that happened?” Now answer those questions.
An hour earlier, Aizawa was sitting at Bakugou’s bedside, his head in his hands.
“H-how old do they look again?” he asked softly.
“...about two weeks old,” said Recovery Girl.
“His internship—” Aizawa said, feeling sick. He’d called Best Jeanist before they’d found Bakugou. The man had said Bakugou was defiant and angry at the beginning but had calmed down a bit near the end but that he had no idea what could have caused the change. Had— but no, Hakamata would never. He was one of the few high level pros worth an inch of their reputation. He was his friend. He would never —
“What about— did you find any signs of—” Aizawa started, not wanting to say it. What they knew and could infer from that was bad enough but if it was what he thought—
Recovery Girl nodded, looking grim. “He was...it was infected. Healing poorly. I helped it along where I could but there’s only so much I can heal at once.” She closed her eyes. “Aizawa, when you find out who did this…”
She opened them, fury raging inside dark, beetle-black eyes. “You will not let them get away with this.”
“Never in a million years.”
She sagged, brushing a piece of hair off of Bakugou’s forehead. “How did we let this happen?” she asked softly.
Aizawa didn’t answer that. He’d been wondering himself.
They sat quietly, rage and worry electrifying the air as Bakugou breathed, the sound shallow and pained, even with Recovery Girl’s help.
“Besides—” he paused. “From then. He’s okay?”
“Hypothermia and broken ribs,” she said. “And…” she sighed again. “Burns.”
She nodded. “He’s either been working himself too hard or—”
“Been doing it to himself.”
“If not both,” she added quietly.
They sat quietly.
“We failed him.”
“You did,” she said bluntly. “I did. Every goddamn adult in that child’s life has failed him.”
“What have we done…”
She brushed his hair out of his face again. “Not enough...not enough…” She sighed. “And too much.”
A knock came at the door and they both startled.
“Aizawa? We need you to cover Ishiyama’s class for a bit until the police are done questioning him…” one of the third year professors said, out of breath. He must have run here.
“I understand,” he said roughly, the bags in his eyes catching the light.
“Why not a different teacher—” Recovery Girl started but Aizawa raised his hand.
“I’ve got it,” he said heavily. “It’s only a class period.”
“Thanks, Aizawa,” said the professor, taking off again.
Aizawa scanned Bakugou’s face one more time before looking up at Recovery Girl. “I’ll see you in a few,” he said.
“You as well.”
The walk away from the infirmary felt like a burial procession.
The scary thing was is that if they’d been too late, there would have been one.
The terrifying thing was that he didn’t know if they had been too late.
The marks on Bakugou’s arms and the knowledge of what had been done to him rattled in his brain as he made his way into the classroom of silent, watching children.
He took a breath, steeled his face, and sat down.
I- Imagery. Imagine a scene from nature or a good memory and let yourself relax
M- Meaning. What got you through previous problems? Where is there meaning in things?
P- Prayer. Doesn't have to be to a god. Reflect.
R- Relaxation. Do something that relaxes you
O- One thing in a moment. Take the moment one at a time and do only one thing.
V- Vacation. Take a mini vacation- have a short nap, go to Starbucks, go to a park- whatever works
E- Encouragement. Encourage yourself.
There was a quiet hum of people talking and as he forced himself up, he tried to remember where he was and what had happened.
Scrambling up, ignoring the sudden lights popping in his eyes and the pain roaring through his chest, he felt his heart thump at the thought of them seeing the half-faded bruises and bite marks, the mostly healed scratches and cuts.
His stomach plummeted when he realized he was in a gown instead of clothes.
Later, he’d curse himself for it, but it was his own panicked, desperate whine of panic that caught the nurse’s attention.
“Bakugou!” she said, hurrying over but Bakugou was already trying to get out of bed, already trying to run.
His body was too weak though, still under the grasp of pain meds and he barely made it out of the bed before he was crumpling, falling into the nurse’s arms and NO NO NO GET OFF DONT TOUCH ME FUCK YOU FUCK YOU GET OFF—
He didn’t realize he was yelling it till his ears stopped ringing and he realized he was curled on the bed, shaking.
“Breathe, Katsuki-kun,” the nurse said soothingly. “All is well.”
Bakugou wanted to argue, wanted to point out how nothing was okay, how it was all over, how he wanted out, but he could barely find the energy to breathe.
Instead he hyperventilated until black dots covered his vision and he found himself spiralling into darkness.
Anxiety Relief Techniques:
Take a slow breath. Continue slow breathing for 3 minutes.
Drop your shoulders and do a gentle neck roll.
State the emotions you’re feeling as words, e.g., “I feel angry and worried right now.” (Aloud but to yourself.)
Aizawa stared at the phone.
He pushed back the rage.
Before, he’d been desperate, searching for any reason not to suspect Hakamata. Now…phone call ringing in his head...
His skin crawled.
Bakugou was not someone who looked fragile— as emotionally unstable as the kid was on a good day, his physical strength was absolutely undeniable and his confidence as equally unshakable.
But on that bed, green bruises littering his chest and throat— small nicks, cuts, marks , his ribs painfully visible beneath the hospital gown and stomach uncomfortably concave—
He looked young. Fragile.
Worse though, were the small burn marks scattered across his arms and thighs. They looked deliberate in a way the other burn scars on the kid weren’t.
He couldn’t get the panic in Bakugou’s voice out of his head. The desperation. The begging .
The way the kid had begged the nurse to stop when she’d started getting him out of his wet clothes. He’d been kicked out then, for Bakugou’s privacy, but the absolute lost panic in eyes so normally lit by fire—
Someone had hurt his student.
The desire to fight— to kill, protect, wreak unholy vengeance on the one who had dared violate a child, his child in such a monstrous way—
He didn’t even register that he was thinking of Bakugou as his own.
Aizawa got up and walked towards the infirmary.
More anxiety relief tips:
Forgive yourself for not foreseeing a problem that occurred.
Throw out something from your bathroom.
Take a break from watching the news or reading newspapers.
Make a phone call you’ve been putting off.
Write an email you’ve been putting off.
Take another type of action on something you’ve been putting off.
Throw something out of your fridge.
Bakugou wouldn’t look at anyone.
“Katsuki, we need—”
“Don’t call me Katsuki.”
“...Bakugou, we need to know who did this.”
“Bakugou, please. We can’t ensure your safety unless—”
“You don’t have to talk about what happened just yet,” the police officer said slowly. “Just give us a name. Did you know them?”
Bakugou paused. He slowly nodded.
“Alright,” said the officer. “Thank you Bakugou.” She wrote something down. “What gender were they?”
Bakugou stared at the sheets, shoulders tight. He wanted to throw up. He wanted to scream. He wanted to run.
Bakugou stayed silent.
“When did it happen?”
Bakugou clenched his fingers.
“I-Internships. During internships.”
“Was it just once?”
Bakugou curled into a ball, head on his knees. He shook his head.
“How many times?”
He shook his head. Nonononononono—
“Alright. Thank you for your cooperation, Bakugou.”
The police turned her attention away from him and started talking quietly to Recovery Girl and Aizawa. Even if Bakugou wanted to listen, he couldn’t so he just shook, struggling to push back the memories suddenly crowding him.
He let out a choked sound, attracting their attention and someone touched his shoulder and he screamed, lashing out as He was there again, pushing Bakugou down and—
“STOP!” he screeched, fighting. Get off get off get off get off please please fuck —
“Stop!” he begged as they tried to calm him down, their touch only worsening things. “Get off fuck get off get off get off please—”
“Bakugou, you’re in the nurse’s office, it’s okay—”
Went limp. He gave up. Bakugou Katsuki gave up.
“...get him a sedative…”
The world went dark.
They’d had a sub for homeroom for the last two days.
No one was allowed in the backroom of nurses with that private bed only a few students ever had the ‘privilege’ of staying in.
None of the teachers would answer when asked about Bakugou.
...something was wrong.
“I call the next meeting of 1-A students into order,” said Iida, for once not fighting the members of the self-proclaimed ‘Bakusquad’ who were sitting on top of desks.
“What do we know?” Todoroki asked.
“Bakugou attacked Aizawa,” Tooru offered.
“Then he went missing,” Mina added.
“Then a bunch of teachers went missing,” Kaminari added.
“And then Aizawa subbed for Cementoss and seemed off and yelled at us,” Jirou added, swinging her leg up and down anxiously.
“And then he ran off,” Midoriya said.
“But they found Bakugou,” Mina added. “And he’s hurt.”
“And no one is allowed to see him,” Tooru jumped in.
“But what could have happened…?” Momo asked aloud.
“I think...Best Jeanist has something to do with this,” Kirishima said after a short quiet.
“Best Jeanist?” several people asked.
“We already talked about how he changed after internships,” Kirishima said. “Haven’t any of you notice how snappy he gets whenever the guy comes up?”
“We’ve talked about this, Kirishim—” Momo started.
“We haven’t,” said Kirishima. “Not really. Because this is Bakugou. Why would he…”
The pieces clicked and Kirishima lost about three shades.
“Kirishim— dude, are you okay—”
Kirishima stood up quickly, chair clattering to the floor. Bakugou —
“Kirishima!” Iida said, arms doing their wiggle thing. “What on Earth—”
But Kirishima was already out the door, leaving the room in confusion.
“So, Shouji, how’s the girlfriend?” Tooru asked after a long moment.
“She’s not my girlfriend!”
“How’s the almost girlfriend?”
“Probably killing people,” Kaminari mumbled.
“She isn’t a villain!”
“Keep telling yourself that buddy,” Tooru mumbled.
At his desk, Midoriya’s brain kicked into overdrive.
I’m missing something…
Out in the hallway, Kirishima sprinted towards the nurse’s office, lungs aching with suppressed tears.
anyway here's a cool video w/ awesome art and animation ft. trans bakugou
Well, he’s along the right path… Aizawa thought as he faced a pale Kirishima. “No, Kirishima,” he said. “As far to my knowledge, Bakugou was not physically abused by Best Jeanist.”
“Oh…” said Kirishima, sitting back in his chair. “I…”
“I know you are concerned about Bakugou,” Aizawa said. “But he’ll tell you when he’s ready. For now, though, just let him be. He needs a friend, not an interrogator. Understand?”
Aizawa got the strangest urge to ruffle Kirishima’s hair. Oh god I’m going soft.
“Why don’t you go ask the nurse if Bakugou is up for some visitors?” he asked. “Like I said, Bakugou could use a friend.”
“...what if he doesn’t want to see me?” Kirishima’s voice was small.
“It wouldn’t be because of you,” said Aizawa, voice gentling. “Bakugou is in a very rough place right now. You know him— he’s a prideful, strong boy and kids like him don’t like being seen as weak. Letting people in hurts. But he could use a friend and you are a very good one.”
Shota, you have turned into a squishy toy.
“I—” Kirishima took a breath. “Okay. Okay. I’ll go seem him.”
“Alright,” said Aizawa, watching as Kirishima stood. “And Kirishima?”
Kirishima glanced back, a question in his eyes.
“You’re a good friend to him.”
Kirishima turned red. “Tha-thanks,” he said, rubbing his hair. “Have a— nice night, Aizawa-sensei.”
When Kirishima left, Aizawa slumped over his desk, pouring a small glass of bourbon. His stomach had sunk like a stone when Kirishima had burst into his office, white face and shaking. He’d thought that the kid had figured it out. Instead, Kirishima wove a different tale of misery— of beatings and mental abuse— a sick sort of gratefulness wore over him. Kirishima didn’t figure it out. As much as Bakugou needed a friend his age who knew and that he could confide in, it was his story to tell.
He took a long, slow draught of his drink and leaned forward, forehead cradled in his arms. God, I need sleep.
But the police officer’s words rang in his head. Without Bakugou naming a culprit, they could arrest Best Jeanist on suspicion, but they couldn’t hold him long without more solid proof. More than 72 hours had passed and while a rape kit could still get evidence, it wouldn’t be enough to incriminate Hakamata.
It all depended on Bakugou.
God help that poor kid.
You think I would just *give* Kirishima the answers like that?
Kirishima is a Good Boy and deserves the world.
The rape kit was probably one of the hardest things Bakugou had ever done in his life.
But it was over and he’d slept most of the day after in a nice sedated semi-coma so he hadn’t even had to deal with the nightmares but he was just...drained.
He didn’t want to talk to anyone. He didn’t want to deal with anything.
He was just…
He was so fucking tired of the panic and anger and the constant fucking voice in his head that never shut up about how pathetic he was and how He would find him again.
Bakugou just wanted to go back to before.
He also knew he never could.
He opened his eyes, cold sliding from his heart to his feet. No — he can’t see me like this —
Bakugou yanked up the blanket, pulling himself into a sitting position. He was careful to make sure it was wrapped around his shoulders up to his neck and that it hid the fucking fat lumps on his chest. His heart pounded.
There in the doorway was Kirishima, looking uncharacteristically unsure and hesitant.
“Hey, Bakugou…” he said and Bakugou felt his eyes start to burn and he wanted to scream.
Not him. Fuck. Not him —
Kirishima drew nearer, his hands raised. Bakugou wanted him to leave.
Bakugou wanted him to stay.
Before he could stop himself, he was crying.
Fuck — fuck stop crying, stop crying Katsuki, now —
“Can- can I hug you?”
Bakugou hated himself as he nodded. You’re dirty, you’ll get him dirty, grow up, stop being a baby —
He flinched when Kirishima touched him, felt Him fucking embracing him, felt Him nipping his neck but it washed out as Kirishima gently rubbed his back.
“You’re safe,” Kirishima murmured. “I’ve got you.”
Bakugou let himself break down.
The lights above them buzzed softly as Kirishima slowly rocked them as Bakugou sobbed, grieving what he’d lost.
Eventually his sobs slowed and Kirishima ran his free hand through Bakugou’s hair as the latter drifted into an exhausted sleep.
It had been a long day.
When Bakugou started snoring against Kirishima’s shoulders, he gently laid Bakugou down, tucking the blanket up higher. If Bakugou was hiding something, he figured he had a reason and that the nurse knew. He wouldn’t pry.
He got off the bed as slowly as he could. He buried the anger bubbling under the surface.
He could figure out what happened later.
Aizawa was right— Bakugou needed a friend more than an avenger.
Kirishima would be the best damn friend he could.
He owed Bakugou that much.
For a moment, he watched Bakugou, comforted by the slow rise and fall of the blankets. Bakugou was alive. He wasn’t okay— not after what he saw— but he would be.
Bakugou had them.
Kirishima would make sure of it.
finals week is next week
i haven't gone to math in like a month because it literally makes me high key suicidal so THERES THAT
BUT IM ALIVE
also fuck intrusive thoughts fuck relapsing and fuck my family
things i've learned this week: it hurts just as much to get pulled around by your hair when its short compared to long
me @ me: stop oversharing
this chapter was weirdly hard to write? but i did
so here ny'all go
this week's tip: when you can, listen to music that lifts your mood. at first it's annoying as fuck but eventually it
pro tip: start with stuff thats bitter sweet and move to the uplifting shit later
i was introduced to half of the 'modern 4' musicals- bmc and dear evan hansen and i have been listening to waving through a window and you will be found nonstop today and it actually? made me feel better
which considering i couldn't get out of bed until like one, that's impressive
i love you all so much
and you are all so fucking strong for making it this far and no matter what bullshit is going down in your lives, keep that metaphorical jaw raised.
you got this, even on the days you dont.
For the first time in two weeks, Bakugou woke up not feeling like shit.
Bakugou lay there, eyes tracing the ceiling tiles as he tried to wrap his mind around the day before. It’d started out bad enough. Actually, Bakugou didn’t want to remember the morning, fuck you. Before the anxiety could swell up in his throat he wrenched his thoughts to later.
Did he know? Did he see?
His chest felt fucking heavy and not for the first time since they had cut his binder off him (too small, old, ragged, stuck to him like plastic wrap — someone get scissors — ) he fought the urge to not just get up and grab one of the scissors or scalpels and hack away.
He ached. The bruises and scratches, yellowed and scabbed with age, the worst nearly healed littered his body. A dull ache radiated from his...
They’d...stitched him. During the rape kit. Fixed him up and yet he almost hurt worse now. It was like he was back with—
Tearing, ripping, laughter —
Blood, oh god, oh god —
“Don’t you dare, Katsuki, keep that mouth open.”
Neck aching as he was pounded into the mattress, tears drying across his cheeks —
Bakugou threw up and rolled away from it all, curling into a quavering, aching ball. He wanted to die.
Funny how quickly you can be having a good day and have it all fall apart.
He felt washed out.
Bakugou stared at the ceiling tiles and tried to chase the peace of that morning.
Sudden stimulus can shock you out of the pattern of an incoming flashback or panic attack- things like opening a window, turning on the TV, etc.
Chapter 29: Intermission Pt II
“I’m trans,” Bakugou blurted.
Kirishima froze, one foot in the door. “Huh?”
Bakugou swallowed, shifting on the bed. He’d finally been given a sweatshirt, but there was no hiding his chest. No one could say Bakugou Katsuki wasn’t brave.
“Oh,” said Kirishima with a shrug, throwing Bakugou off balance. “Okay. I figured.”
Kirishima tilted his head. “What?”
Kirishima sat at the end of his bed. “My sister is trans. And...yesterday kinda confirmed it.”
Bakugou looked down, fiddling with the blankets.
“...what happened?” Kirishima asked.
That was a loaded question. Bakugou evaded it.
“A lot’s happened,” Bakugou snorted even though it sounded more fragile then he’d like. “You’re going to have to specify.”
“With Best Jeanist.”
Hands pulling, pain, pain, pain, burning —
He could feel Kirishima staring, could almost hear the question but instead Kirishima just shifted. “Okay.”
Bakugou relaxed, shoulders going almost limp.
“They said you’re good to go by the end of the week,” Kirishima said in that fake peppy voice of his— so good you could almost believe it if you didn’t know him.
Bakugou made a small noise.
“Everyone’s really worried,” Kirishima continued. “It’s not the same without you.”
Kirishima shifted. “It’s okay not to be okay, you know,” he said. “You don’t...have to be okay.”
He pulled his knees up, setting his head on them. “I don’t know if I’ll ever be okay.”
The words slip out before he can stop them. It’s the mixed blessing/curse of being around Kirishima— it was so fucking hard not to respond with his earnestness with truth.
Neither of them register the use of his first name.
“Can I touch your hand?” Kirishima asked after a while, inching closer.
“Can I have a yes or no?” Kirishima asked.
Kirishima shifted, coming close enough that he could take Bakugou’s hand, which he did.
He squeezed. “You’ll get through this, Bakubro. You’re manly enough.”
Bakugou bit back a sob.
Kirishima bumped his shoulder gently. “C’mon, Katsuki. You can cry your manly tears in front of me. I don’t mind.”
“Shut up,” Bakugou choked out. The words lacked their fire though and he leaned into Kirishima.
“I’m not gonna leave just because you cry you know,” Kirishima said gently. “Or think anything less of you.”
Bakugou choked out a sob, tears escaping him.
“I’ve got you,” Kirishima said, squeezing his hand. “I’ve got you.”
Kirishima held his hand.
“Hello. Would you like me to call you Bakugou or Katsuki?”
Bakugou stared at the woman.
She smiled at him.
Writing that down, she nodded at him. “Bakugou it is then.”
“What am I doing here?” Bakugou asked after a moment, pulling his knees up to his chest.
Long black curls fell over her shoulder as she glanced at him, smiling warmly. “That’s what I should be asking you.”
Therapy went fast after that. It wasn’t anything like Bakugou had expected— there was no couch, no old man, no weirdo trying to crack his head open and crawl inside it. Just a nice lady who explained how therapy would work and tried to help him figure out what he wanted out of it.
He didn’t like it.
She was one of those people that made it easy to spill whatever you were thinking into the open air, like Kirishima. He didn’t trust her.
He’d nearly said too much too many times already.
Bakugou laid on the bed, staring at the ceiling. Kirishima was in class, Recovery Girl was busy and none of her interns and other nurses were around.
He could easily…
He eyed the scapals but decided he was too tired and unmotivated at the moment. Maybe later.
Bakugou rolled over. Sore. Still.
He burned in other places but he was trying to forget that. Trying to forget how they’d had to open him back and stitch and how he’d woken, burning, and wishing he was dead
At least the bruises and hickeys were fading. They’d been the hardest to hide.
It wasn’t the first time Bakugou had had to hide bruises. His mother was a strong adherent to ‘spare the rod, spoil the child’ and took it to its extreme.
Seeing Deku with his perfect fucking mom always pissed him off for the day.
Bakugou sighed, holding an arm over his face. He pushed back the guilt as he always did. He could feel is fester and knew if he let it, it would eat him alive so he just...let it fester.
He needed to apologize.
He also knew that it would destroy him.
So instead he just rolled over, burying his head in the pillow. He was alone with his thoughts and he wanted them to fuck off but someone brilliant had figured out that Bakugou Katsuki + his quirk + being possible suicidal = bad time and slapped more quirk suppressors on him. Great.
He could sleep but that was a one way train to nightmares.
Bakugou punched himself, letting his chin jerk to the side. He did it again and again until his face was throbbing and cheek bright red.
Curling up, he stared at the wall.
What am I doing here?
The wall held no answers.
*hobbles in very late with recently dislocated rib and baggy eyes and a relapse* heyo
im dead inside. it is 5 am and i keep staring at this chapter so i just said fuck it.
need to self harm and dont want to relapse? red food coloring + lavender oil. boom.
works at least a little for me.
“...you can go back to class tomorrow.”
Bakugou’s head shot up. “Huh?”
“You can go back to class tomorrow,” Kirishima said, chewing at his lip. “At least— that’s what Recovery Girl said.”
Bakugou was quiet.
Kirishima sighed, shifting on the bed. His hair was down again, falling in loose waves over his broad shoulders. “You don’t have to if you aren’t ready.”
“Of course I’m ready shitty hair. I could have gone back days ago.”
Bakugou pulled his knees to his chest, ignoring the slight ripple of pain that went through his body. “I’m fine.”
“...you aren’t though.”
Kirishima sighed. “I won’t push you.”
They sat in quiet for a while, Bakugou slowly leaning against Kirishima as they watched the clock tick together.
“How was therapy?”
“She just asked me a bunch of questions and shit.”
The clocks’ hands shifted but the pause wasn’t awkward.
“How was school?”
“Boring,” said Kirishima with a grin. “It’s quiet without you.”
“Sure,” Bakugou snorted, picking at the blanket.
Bakugou glanced up.
Kirishima shrugged, pulling at a loose strand of hair and curling it around his finger. “I don’t know. You can just tell there’s something missing. It’s….weird.”
“...I don’t know what to say.”
He shrugged, red hair falling against his jaw like a waterfall. “They miss you.”
Bakugou shrugged with a snort.
“I’m an asshole, Eijirou, I really don’t—”
Kirishima leaned his head on Bakugou’s shoulder, batting his eyelashes.
Bakugou jumped away, heart pounding.
Kirishima paused. “Sorry.”
“It’s— fuck, it’s fine, I’m fine, everything is fine—”
“It’s okay not to be fine, Katsuki.”
“I’m tired of not being fine.”
The bed creaked and Bakugou flinched as Kirishima got up to grab his tablet out of his bag. “Wanna watch a stupid show?”
Kirishima was careful not to touch him again as together they watched a stupid cartoon as the sun set in the window, sending shards of orange, red, and yellow through the curtains and dancing across their faces as the room grew darker and darker.
A fragile calm grew in the cracks of the nurse’s office, quiet and unspoken.
YOUR LEGITIMATE RIGHTS:
1. You have a right to need things from others
2. You have a right to put yourself first sometimes
3. You have a right to feel and express your emotions or your pain
4. You have the right to be the final judge of your beliefs and accept them as legitimate
5. You have the right to your beliefs and convictions
6. You have the right to your experience- even if it's different from that of other people
7. You have the right to protest any treatment or criticism that feels bad to you
8. You have a right to negotiate for change
9. You have the right to ask for help, emotional support, or anything else you need (even if you may not always get it)
10. You have a right to say no; saying no doesn't make you bad or selfish
11. You have a right not to justify yourself to others
12. You have a right to not take responsibility for someone else's problems
13. You have a right to choose not to respond to a situation
14. You have a right, sometimes, to inconvenience or disappoint others
Bakugou’s hand was frozen around the door handle.
Just open the door, shitty coward.
His hand didn’t move.
Fucking grow a pair, you piece of shit —
Deep breath in.
Deep breath out.
He is Bakugou Katsuki, winner of the Sports Festival—
So good — my little slut —
He’s Bakugou Katsuki—
C’mon baby —
Bakugou startled as Kirishima came up behind him. His eyes darted away, red boring into the wood of the door as his hand clenched around the metal.
“Nothing,” he mumbled. He slammed the door open violently and let it knock against the hinges, striding it with his hands in his pockets. He looked at no one as he stalked towards his desk despite knowing they had to be whispering and feeling their stares.
He started to swing his legs up on top of the desk but—
Hands spreading his knees apart —
Vulnerable, dysphoric, violating —
His elevator boots hit the ground with a smack.
He ignored the bruises he was boring into his arms, glaring at the back of the head of whatever second rate extra was in front of him.
You’re so insecure, Katsuki-chan, His voice said, fingers tracing his jaw. You act like you are better than everyone around you and yet you know how absolutely worthless you are.
He winced as his nails drew blood. His heart pounded as he just barely picked up on someone talking.
“Shut the fuck up,” he snapped, turning to a startled Izuku. He looked at the class as a whole a moment later. “Get your fucking entertainment somewhere fucking else and stop staring at me like I’m a fucking exhibit at a goddamn fucking zoo. It’s none of your fucking business where I was, I won’t fucking tell any of you, and if you fucking keep looking at me one fucking minute longer I’ll rip your eyeballs out of your skulls and shove them up your ass so far they replace your fucking kidneys.”
Bakugou glared out the window, ignoring the shaking going through his entire body.
Aizawa cleared his throat. “Bakugou, meet me after class.”
Bakugou barely held back a groan, fingers pressing deep into the calluses on his palms.
He could feel the stares and with an impressive amount of self-control, managed to stay quiet and endure.
It wasn’t like he’d never done that before.
my laptop broke
TWO MILESTONES THIS CHAPTER I'M HYPED
10K HITS AND 666 KUDOS
I LOVE YOU ALL SO MUCH <333
Maybe it meant she was a bad person.
Maybe it meant she wasn’t exactly the squeaky-clean hero everyone who bothered to notice her assumed she was.
Hagakure Tooru was so sick of all the attention that Bakugou Katsuki got.
She knew it was bad. She knew something was wrong with him— knew everyone had a very good reason to be worried and focus on him.
But— fuck , she couldn’t stop the jealousy.
I’m a bad person.
She watched Bakugou his first day back, though she’d sworn to herself that she wouldn’t. She watched the tenseness— the little movements he made and half-aborted flinches.
She watched as he exploded at the class.
Watched as he stayed quiet despite the glances at him all throughout class.
And she thought.
Tooru knew why she was jealous. Bakugou drew the spotlight. He was someone who would be a main character in an anime— someone who would become a top hero for sure, if he didn’t become the villain she heard people whisper about in the hallways.
Tooru was just….
Tooru was the kind of person who could be missed in an empty room, even ignoring her quirk— the kind of person that no one really noticed, that no one really cared about.
Her thumb traced the lines on her arms, hidden from anyone and everyone, whether or not they would care. Bakugou’s hurt was clear on his face— in the bags under his eyes, in the hollows of his cheeks. Anyone with functional eyes could tell he was in a bad place.
All Tooru had to do with sound reasonable perky and no one would ever know she was falling apart.
So maybe she was a bad person.
But god was she sick of Bakugou Katsuki being the center of attention.
Maybe that’s why they would slowly begin to get along.
Hiya! Hopefully y'all liked that chapter.
There is also a discord now!
I finally got meds (prozac and xanax) and hopefully will be getting meds for ADHD, so hopefully I'll start doing a little better! *happy cheers*
Please leave reviews! I was very unsure of this chapter, so it would be welcomed <3
Tooru jumped, almost screaming. To her surprise, instead of falling face first into the river like she would have expected, she found herself pulled back onto the grass by her collar.
She blinked when she realized just who it was who’d saved her.
He shrugged, letting go. Tooru stared as he sat next to her, suddenly bare feet— when had he taken his shoes off? — swirling in the cool water. The Bakugou of a few months ago would have let her fall.
They sat in silence for a long time. The wind blew through their hair as the sun peeked through the cloud, sending thin razors of hot light across their shoulders and faces, heating the thick grass below them.
Together they watched as a branch floated by and as a few young fish darted about in the water, scales catching the light and sending it sparkling across the water.
This part of U.A. was secluded. Tooru went here whenever she got too overwhelmed— when the sudden crush of people after years of homeschooling made her stomach invade her chest cavity and when sweat began to pour out of her, no matter how invisible it was. It was her safe place— where she could be just Tooru without having to worry about being...well….invisible.
Part of her wanted to hate Bakugou for invading that space but it was overwhelmed by the part that surprisingly enjoyed just….having someone there with her.
She didn’t look at him when she heard him shift, heard the bit back sob.
They stayed there, quiet and watching the light catch on the current and send it, shattered, across the river and against pebbles and stones.
He stood first, feet finding balance. “Thanks, Hagakure.”
Her head shot up at the thank you. She’d never heard him say that before.
“I— yeah. No problem. Anytime.” The last word slipped out before she could stop it, but for some reason, she couldn’t really say she regretted it.
He nodded and disappeared out into the normal world.
For a moment longer, Tooru sat there, watching the fish and the water before realizing that it just— seemed too empty. Too...lonely.
She rose to her feet.
Skipping a pebble she’d been rolling in her hand the entire time, the invisible girl disappeared back into the rush of normal life.
breathing in the steam of hot tea can help relax your lungs, which is nice when you're sick or recently had a panic attack. it also can be grounding after a flashback
“In and out, Katsuki,” said Kirishima, sitting cross legged in front of him. They were in the hallway. “Breathing square, remember?”
“C-can’t—” he choked out. “Can’t.”
“Yes you can,” said Kirishima. “You’re Bakugou Katsuki, remember? You can do anything.”
He reached out to take Bakugou’s hand. “Breathe with me. In for four—” He modeled it and Bakugou shakily followed. “Hold for four.”
They did so together. “Out for four—” They breathed out. “Hold for four.”
Together, they breathed like this until Bakugou’s trembling decreased. He swore softly and pulled his hand from Kirishima’s, curling into an embarrassed ball.
“Hey, c’mon,” said Kirishima. “There’s nothing to be ashamed of. You aren’t the only one in class who gets panic attacks y’know.”
Bakugou didn’t answer but just grit his teeth, pressing his lips into a tight line. He swallowed hard and pressed his forehead against his knees.
“You’re okay,” Kirishima said.
I feel weak.
“Do you know what triggered this one?”
Bakugou looked up, eyes darting away from Kirishima’s. Someone had grabbed his shoulder to steady herself in the hallway.
“Wanna tell me?”
He shook his head.
They sat in quiet for a while, Kirishima tapping out a simple rhythm on the floor.
“...Best Jeanist was arrested yesterday.”
Bakugou made a noise from the back of his throat.
“News didn’t say why. Did you hear about it?”
Yeah. He had. Aizawa had pulled him aside after class.
Kirishima coughed and shifted. “Wanna head back to the dorm?”
Bakugou nodded, blinking as he stared at Kirishima’s suddenly outstretched hand.
Kirishima grinned at him and wiggled the hand.
Bakugou took it.
stand up, knees bent and take a deep breath. push arms out with exhale
exhale through mouth like a dragon
-You need to feel to heal
-You are capable of keeping yourself safe
-You cannot control others but you can control your response to them
-You are worthy of kindness, love, and respect
-notice sensations in body
-focus attention to each body part
-breathe into that body part
good news: meds are working
bad news: i may?? have had a seizure
please leave reviews
“You’re a girl? ”
Bakugou’s fist slammed into Mineta’s face before he registered what he was doing, shoulders heaving as the smaller boy slammed into the ground. A sick crack was followed by a bloom of blood as Mineta shrieked, holding his broken nose.
Kaminari was frozen in the doorway, one hand holding onto the side.
Bakugou looked up, fists hanging at his sides.
Red met gold as Mineta whined on the ground, blood dripping onto the tiles.
Bakugou straightened, adjusting his binder as he shrugged on the rest of his clothes, eyes cold as he stared down Kaminari. “Gonna say anything?”
Kaminari shook his head and just pushed aside his own costume slightly to show the strap of his own binder— flesh toned, instead of black like Bakugou’s. Understanding seemed to spark between them as Mineta struggled to his feet, not having noticed the by-play.
“You listen to me, you little grape rat freak,” Bakugou hissed, watching more blood drip down from Mineta’s nose. “I’m a fucking boy. You tell anyone and I’ll blow up those little fucking balls on your head one by one until you’re a cooling corpse on the floor. Got it?”
Mineta’s lip curled slightly and he spat blood at Bakugou’s feet. “Sure,” he said, wiping away the blood from under his nose. “Whatever you say, Bakugou-chan.”
Before Bakugou could do anything, Mineta sprinted away, pushing past a startled Kaminari.
Bakugou slammed his fist into the nearest locker.
“He’s a piece of shit.”
Bakugou snorted, shaking out his fist. “No fucking kidding.”
Kaminari shifted. “If you ever need— tampons or pads or whatever…”
“I won’t say anything if you don’t.”
Bakugou looked up and gave a short, brief nod.
“You know, it’s kind of funny how Mineta tripped and smacked his face into a locker,” Kaminari said, leaning against the doorframe. “I wouldn’t be surprised if he tried to blame someone else— like you, for example.”
Bakugou blinked in confusion for a moment before getting it. “...thanks, Kaminari.”
The two left the quiet locker room, with the bloodstains on the floor and a slightly dented metal door behind.
http://www.moodjuice.scot.nhs.uk/posttrauma.asp here's a link to a free PTSD workbook
Sometimes just breathing can help- taking a moment to feel the cold air entering your mouth and nose and warm air leave it. For a second, everything is alright.
Please please pleaaaaaaaaase review I love them so much and it makes my day.
Also! I'm finally on ADHD meds! :D
Spine straight, jaw lifted, don’t show weakness.
Carmine eyes bore into sheer black as he hid his trembling hands in his pockets. When he’d been called into Aizawa’s office, he’d thought it was something about decking Mineta or something stupid like that.
The moment he’d spotted the police uniform, his stomach had found a home somewhere in his legs, tight and painful as electricity seemed to spark down his spine.
He refused the unspoken request to sit, his legs like blocks of wood beneath him as he met the pitying gaze of the officer, his own chest burning with self-hatred and fury that she’s looking down on him, goddamnit, he’s not broken, he’s not fragile, he’s not fucking—
He feels vulnerable though, trapped in that office, caught beneath the twin gazes of Aizawa and the officer.
Bakugou misses her question, eyes not finding her lips in time.
He stares blankly for a moment, off balance.
She repeats, “Did Hakamata Tsunagu rape you?”
The words hit like hammers to his ribcage, as if he was back out in that storm with his binder squeezing him until all he felt was blood on his tongue.
He doesn’t realize he’s taken a step back and another until his back hit the wall.
Get ahold of yourself, it’s just words, shitty excuse for a piece of—
“Bakugou?” Aizawa asked, voice gentle, eyes unreadable.
He raises his jaw, red eyes hardening into something dangerous but also painfully shattered and simultaneously strong. He gives one short, harsh nod before spinning on his heel and leaving, door slamming behind him.
For a moment, a sick, heady feeling goes through him, making his knees almost limp. He catches himself, breathing in through tight lungs.
His fingers try to find old bruises around his throat but they’ve faded at this point, leaving nothing but phantoms in their wake.
I told— fuck, I told, fucking idiot, fucking piece of shit, fucking—
His heart is too fast but he can’t calm down —
His feet find the gym and the indoor track and he runs until there’s nothing left but the ache of overworked muscles and the spinning of his head as he stares up at the large ceiling fan in the rafters, the fan’s arms twisting like his gut.
Bakugou was screwed.
Count your heartbeats.
You're alive. You've survived this long.
You're a survivor.
Existing is brave, you know. Surviving is even braver- whether it's just a rough week or abuse, mental illness or physical disability. We all have our demons. We all suffer.
And yet we survive.
That's pretty fucking cool if you ask me.
If you're living- if you can feel that heartbeat and the air in your lungs no matter how much it might ache, you're a survivor.
You're braver than you think.
~~reviews make my day and water my crops~~
~~tony stop being gushy its 5:49 am~~
When Bakugou was younger, he’d tried to catch bees with his bare hands, eyes gleaming as he chased the fat, fuzzy bodies of the bumblebees buzzing lazily among his mother’s poorly upkept flowers.
The sensation in his head harmonized with that half-remembered buzzing, worsened by the ever-present thick heaviness in his ears.
The back of his heels rattled against the side of his balcony, eyes latched on the thin sliver of moon.
It would be so easy to fall.
He breathed in the cold night air. His therapist had tried, unsuccessfully, to get him to talk about what happened. After one flashback and one rant later, she’d simply guided him through a new coping skill. If Bakugou was inclined to, the paper was still laying on his bed.
Bakugou kept tapping his feet against the bars of his balcony.
He watched the subtitles on his phone.
No. 4 Hero Best Jeanist Arrested—
He closed out a second later, hands shaking slightly. He should be happy.
Why does he feel like...this?
The phone slid down his hand until the tips of his fingers hold onto it. A twitch of his finger would send it spiralling four stories to the ground.
It felt oddly poetic.
He would have to testify.
Bakugou’s fingers suddenly clenched around the bars of his balcony as he felt dizzy, phone miraculously clattering to the floor instead of down four stories to the ground.
He’d have to testify.
If he wanted a chance — if he wanted freedom —
His ribs ached.
Bakugou watched the night sky eat the moon and the sun paint the sky shades of red.
And that's the end of Act II!
Now for Act III...
Reviews make me happy.
Picking glue off your fingers is oddly satsifying and calming.
Tying tie blankets too. Any repetitive movement is by nature calming.
Flap your hands really hard when you feel overwhelmed to relieve some of the tension.
Chapter 39: intermission
welcome to the intermission
act three shall begin soon
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
It took all four of them to hold Aizawa back.
The anger rushed through him, hot and bright as he lunged against their arms, eyes burning.
Hakamata’s eyes met his unflinchingly.
“Why?” he hissed, pain and betrayal and anger boiling in his voice. “Why?”
Hakamata shrugged, dark eyes half-hidden behind unusually messy blond locks. He looked smaller in prison garb, no longer larger than life. His confidence and flamboyance remained untouched however, even in the face of Aizawa’s fury.
Aizawa managed to get free of Mic and the other’s hold, slamming Hakamata against the wall, fingers curling into the fabric of Hakamata’s jumpsuit.
“You fucking hypocrite,” he growled.
Hakamata’s dark eyes narrowed slightly. “And what could you mean by that?”
“When I was—” His teeth grinded audibly, fingers bunching into the fabric more. “When I was almost— you fucking hypocrite, you said you hated rapists and you fucking— you fucking raped my student you piece of shit—”
“It was not rape.”
Aizawa slammed his head into the wall, ignoring the sick crack and groan. To his surprise, none of the four behind him moved to stop him.
“It was rape, you slimy pedophilic piece of hypocritical shit—”
“He practically was asking for it.”
Before Aizawa could actually kill him, he was pulled back. Hakamata slid down the wall a bit, holding his head with a groan.
“How the fuck— there were fucking tears , you piece of shit, he’s only sixteen —”
“Brutish little brat,” Hakamata said, a mocking smile on his face. “ Someone had to teach him his place. Besides, he more or less asked me to.”
“Shut up— shut up—”
“Shouta, we should go—” Mic said, dropping his voice. The usual playfulness and extravagance was gone, replaced with barely withheld fury.
“Let me fucking— he raped my student —”
“Let’s go Shouta-kun.”
Aizawa let him drag him from the room.
They stood in quiet for a moment as Aizawa slammed his fist against the wall despite knowing how stupid it was. He trembled, throat tight.
“He was our friend.”
“He was our friend.”
“Yeah. He was.”
The past tense hung in the air as the two of them stood there. Aizawa pulled his hands down his face, trying to get control of himself. He slowly breathed out.
“What are we going to do?”
“What we can,” said Mic. “Whatever we can to make sure this never happens again.”
“It shouldn’t have happened in the first place.”
A pause. Aizawa looked up to see Mic glancing out the window, a shadow across his face as light glowed against his hair.
“No. It shouldn’t have.”
Mic nodded, pushing off the wall.
It was a promise.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cPEvti_yto this song pumps me up and makes me feel better *shrugs*
cleaning can help you feel a little bit better. even just clearing a spot on the floor can help. gardening too, or just sitting out in the sun.
Ishiyama Ken was a man of few words despite his profession. At twenty eight years old, he had nearly a decade of hero work under his belt and nearly a full year of education. He was the sort of man who slid effortlessly into academia, as much a scholar as he was a hero.
While teaching dipped heavily into his time allotted for hero work, it wasn’t something he minded overmuch.
Ken stared into his tea, the teacher’s lounge quiet around him. Soft oranges and pinks streamed through the half-curtained windows, sending speckles of light across the table and into his cup of amber liquid.
The memory of Hakamata’s eyes, so cold compared to what they usually were, haunted him.
Jeanist hadn’t even fought them when they arrived. He’d just looked up from his desk, joviality fading as he’d realized what they were here for.
Hakamata simply lifted his wrists and smiled .
Ken didn’t think that smile would ever leave his nightmares.
He sipped his tea, watching the light come through the glass like a candle flame. They hadn’t realized just what Hakamata was. No one had. The fact that someone so strong, someone so respected and well loved could…
Best Jeanist was supposed to be selfless and brave. A good man. A good hero. Flawed, of course, perhaps a bit arrogant and a little too flamboyant, but never…
But it had been a mask, hadn’t it? He was a man who knew how to create a positive social reputation and manipulate it. He was a man in the perfect position to groom the victims who came his way.
How many people before Bakugou Katsuki had he harmed?
How many people like Best Jeanist were out there amongst the heroes, using their status to harm those they were supposed to be protecting?
Ken dropped his head into his hands, sighing. An irrational part of him kept whispering that he should have known. He should have seen the signs.
The rational side of him knew better though. People like Best Jeanist— they knew how to hide in plain sight. They were clever in their cruelty, chameleon in their private depravity. They staked their entire operation on making sure people like Ken— people like Aizawa and Mic— couldn’t see the signs.
He and the others weren’t blameless though. Ken knew that.
Bakugou Katsuki had been among them nearly two weeks before he’d fallen apart before their eyes, nearly dying because of their incompetence. Bakugou Katsuki had been hurt by the negligence and occasional outright abuse of the staff upon him— most notably the Sports Festival.
It might have been his mother’s suggestion, but they still had tied a sixteen year old to a hunk of rock, muzzled him, and handcuffed him on live television in front of millions and to what? Embarrass him? Punish him?
Ken never found the answer.
The guilt wore down on him as he stared into his tea, the light fading from the window. Soon, the other teachers would arrive and the meeting would begin.
His thoughts scattered in his mind like the sakura blossoms in spring and he leaned forward, large hands cupping around his tea. They had to be better. Not just for Bakugou, but for all the students.
For all of them.
Ken looked up as the teachers began to arrive in twos and threes, sitting around the large center table. The scent of coffee and tea filled the room as slowly all of them arrived.
“The trial will begin in a few weeks,” Aizawa said finally. “For Hakamata.”
“Will Bakugou-kun have to testify?” a teacher from the general course Ken had only spoken to once or twice asked.
“Yes,” Aizawa said, voice heavy. “Most likely. I would be surprised if Hakamata’s other victims stepped forward as well.”
“You think there’s more?” Midnight asked, stirring her black coffee.
“I don’t know for sure,” said Aizawa. “But I wouldn’t be surprised.”
There was an uncomfortable quiet.
“We need to vette the heroes the kids go to for internships better,” said Mic, one foot kicked up on the table. His hair was down for once, tied into a messy blond bun. He looked...tired.
“How?” said Snipe, fiddling with his hat.
“Maybe they would have to submit a short report on what they plan to do with the kids?” Thirteen suggested, signing at the same time for Snipe’s benefit, knowing their voice was difficult for the man to pick out. “And we could do a more stringent background check.”
“Jeanist would have slipped through both,” Sekijirou pointed out.
“There’s only so much we can do,” Ectoplasm said, shaking his head. “Jeanist was a good actor. Can anyone honestly tell me this didn’t come as a surprise?”
“His record was perfect,” Ectoplasm continued. “We can do our best to protect the students from now on and make sure we catch what we can but there will always be predators out there that we won’t spot until it’s too late.”
“So what do we do?” Power Loader asked.
Thirteen sighed, tapping at their helmet anxiously. “We can...all take a course in spotting signs of abuse. It would help in more than just internships as well.”
“We could also take a bystander intervention course,” added Snipe. “The United States has a program called ‘S.A.F.E.’, correct? Maybe we can establish something like that for the hero academies here in Japan.”
“S.A.F.E.?” Ken asked, curious.
“Students and faculty for equality,” said Snipe, shrugging. “My sister teaches at a school in the U.S. that requires S.A.F.E. training for all the hero instructors. It helps professors learn how to handle topics like abuse and rape as well as basic LGBTQ+ topics.”
“It’s something,” Ken said with a sigh. “What are we going to do about Bakugou-kun?”
“What about him?” Midnight asked.
“We fucked up,” Aizawa said bluntly, half-chugging his coffee.
“The school already apologized for the Sports Festival—” she argued.
“This isn’t about the Sports Festival,” Ken said, setting his cup down perhaps a little too hard.
The entire room snapped their heads toward the man.
Ken looked up, hand tight around the handle to the cup. “The child went two weeks before anyone bothered to intervene and that was after we found him half dead on school grounds. Two weeks.”
His eyes were narrowed with shame and barely withheld anger. “Tell me. If it had been Uraraka-chan or Midoriya-kun, would we have waited two weeks? Would we have let the other students in his class suffer?”
There was an uncomfortable silence.
“It’s not just Bakugou either,” said Snipe. “I’ve noticed the same bias amongst ourselves for other students— that Shinsou boy in 1C, notably.”
“Kuroiro in 1B,” Sekijirou added.
“Ichinawa in 3F,” Power Loader joined in.
“Haru—” started Aizawa before Nezu patted the table.
“That’s enough,” the principal said. “What do you suggest we do, Cementoss?”
“I don’t know,” he said honestly, sipping at his tea. “Other than become aware of what we are doing and how we treat the students?”
“That’s not enough,” said Mic.
All Might sighed, rubbing his eyes. “I don’t know what to do.”
A shiver went through the staff at that.
“None of us do,” Ken finally said, finishing his tea. He stared at the dregs. “But we need to do something.”
“But what?” Thirteen asked.
No one had an answer.
pleaaaaaaaaase join the server and leave reviews? owo
anyway i love you all
sometimes just lighting a candle can be relaxing. turn off the lights and watch it and just...breathe.
He breathed in the cold morning air, toes dug into the dewy grass.
“Where you from, anyway?”
Tooru shifted, tossing a rock into the river. “Tokyo. Yoyogi district.”
He nods, stripping a stick and tossing the bits of bark into the water.
“My parents are into fashion,” she said, not sure why she was telling him this. “I remember seeing you in magazines they had on their desks.” She paused. “Do you still model?”
“Not for a while,” he said after a pause, shaving at his stick with a pocket knife.
“Where are you from?” she asked.
“I was born in Kawanehon. Shizuoka Prefecture. It’s a small town. My parents moved to Musutafu when I was four for work.”
“What’s it like? Kawanehon, I mean, if you remember it.”
Bakugou was quiet for a moment. “Green. Really green. Lots of mountains and forests. Summers were pretty hot. Sometimes I’d help my uncle pick green tea on his farm.”
“Do you ever go back?”
He nods, picking at the grass for a moment before going back to his stick. “Sometimes during the summer, yeah. I help out at the farm. Free labor and all. Keeps me in condition though, so I don’t complain.”
She nods, though she knows he can’t see. One nail slices down the stem of a kanto dandelion.
He picks his own dandelion, twisting the stem a bit and staring at the petals.
“What happened?” Tooru finally asked, throwing her flower into the river.
Bakugou paused, hand tightening around the stem of his dandelion.
For a moment, they were both quiet, the sound of the rushing water and distant birds chirping filling the clearing.
“What do you mean?” Bakugou said slowly.
“When you were gone. What happened?”
“Got hypothermia. No big deal.”
“Bullshit,” Tooru said, eyes boring into his own, even though Bakugou couldn’t see it. “We both know that’s bullshit, Bakugou.”
“It’s none of your goddamn business.”
“I guess you’re right.”
They sat in silence for a while longer, Bakugou carving at his stick again with quiet ‘schtick’ noises as the sharpened blade ran down the wood.
“Everyone’s worried about you.”
“They shouldn’t be.”
Tooru hummed softly, fingers curling into the dirt as she watched a few young fish swim in circles, the rising sun sending streams of gold and orange across the glittering waves.
“You know, the heroes have treated you like shit,” she said casually, twisting her fingers around a bruised zinnia.
Bakugou glanced at her, eyes narrowing.
“They fucking tied you up like a dog,” she said, ripping at the grass. “I’ve seen how they treat you. Like you’re an animal. Or a monster.”
She shrugged a bit, tossing the zinnia into the water. “I don’t know. I guess I’m just talking, mostly.”
“I’m not gonna be a villain.”
She was quiet for a bit. “I know.”
Bakugou blinked, staring at her invisible form. She kept pulling leaves off dandelions and wildflowers, tossing them into the river and watching the current drag them away.
“I know everyone thinks you’re this big brutish bitch,” she said and though Bakugou couldn’t see her eyes, he could feel them burning into him. “That you’re violent and hateful and don’t give a shit about anyone or anything besides being the best.”
“And,” she said, tossing the stem of one bare flower into the water. “I know that’s bullshit.”
“How do you know that?” he challenged.
“I’m invisible, Bakugou, not oblivious,” she said. “When you’re not being loud and annoying, you are actually pretty decent to be around. You’re quiet, yeah, and a bit of a loner. You keep to yourself. But you work harder than probably anyone. You’re smart. Determined. And though your morals can be kinda skewed—” She ignored his half growled protest. “They are probably more solid than anyone else here. You’re stubborn as a mule. If you decided to be a hero, nothing and no one could shift you from that.”
They were both quiet for a long time.
“You only get praise for your quirk and fighting ability, don’t you?”
“What are you—”
He swallowed but didn’t answer.
It was answer enough.
“It’s pretty easy to tell when someone is actually insecure,” she said lightly, casually. She grabbed his wrist as he tried to stand, not flinching when he violently pulled it away.
“What the fuck do you want from me?” he snapped.
“Nothing,” she said, shrugging.
“Bullshit. Everyone wants something.”
“I just want to enjoy the sunrise, same as you.”
He watched her for a long moment; she kept plucking wildflowers and thistles, tossing them into the water.
“I don’t want anything from you,” she said with a small shrug. “I just...want to make sure I’m reading you right.”
“When you’re invisible, people forget you’re there,” she said. “You’re practically a ghost. Even when you are loud and playful and bright...it’s like….you’re an echo. Like you aren’t real.”
He slowly sat down beside her again. “...like people are seeing just an afterimage of who you are.”
“They see just what you want them to see.”
She tosses a stick into the water. “People aren’t going to hurt you if you tone down the anger, you know.”
He flicks his knife around his thumb, not answering her.
She sighed as the last few streams of sunrise set the grass and water on fire. “Look, Bakugou. Everyone is really curious about what the hell happened. And with Jeanist being arrested...people are going to put two and two together soon enough. Would you rather them find out through the media or by telling them yourself?”
“I’d rather they never find out.”
“Mhm,” she hummed quietly. “That’s the thing, Bakugou. You aren’t invisible. You’re...like a wildfire. Bright and loud and completely conspicuous. You don’t have the option of hiding.”
“You really like metaphors, don’t you.”
She shrugged again, shifting to her knees as the colors in the sky faded to a soft blue, wisps of white and sooty clouds streaking across the broad expanse above thick green foliage. “Maybe.”
He snorted. “Whatever.”
“You going to stay here till class starts?”
She nodded, getting to her feet. “I’ll see you around, Explosion King.”
“See you around, Invisibitch.”
She padded away until her uniform blended into small trios and duets of students milling among the paths between the dorms and school buildings.
Bakugou watched the river and breathed, dropping his head onto his knees.
His phone buzzed in his pocket but he already knew what it would say.
4 pm. Courthouse. Meet w/ attorneys.
He breathed in and out, heart racing along to the tempo of the river in front of him.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4u8n_CjUDY this song helps me chill out
you are the most beautiful royal
you don't need to be a sweet, perfect victim
you are wildfire
you are beauty
you are a tempest, a whirlpool, a hurricane
you are powerful and strong and lovely and brave
your existence is brave
and your heart is light and fire
rain and thunder
earth and stone
tempered and wild
soft and rough and hard and light
and breathe in
and breathe out
you will survive
Punch. Duck. Block. Kick.
Sweat poured down his back as Bakugou pummeled the reinforced dummy, fists wrapped in thick white bandages to keep him from splitting open his knuckles.
His foot cracked against the thick fabric as he spun, ducking under the bag as it swung back and sliding towards the opposite side to slam his fist into the heavy bag.
The rhythm chased away the electric bites curling along his spine with every reminder that court was drawing rapidly closer.
He hadn’t wanted anyone to fucking know.
Punch. Duck. Kick. Weave.
He hadn’t wanted this.
Any of this.
Fury curled his lip as he put his entire weight into a kick, clenching his toes.
Bakugou froze, foot extended as he fell on his ass, staring at the smoke curling up from the now-half melted bag.
Did I just—
Bakugou pulled one of his feet closer to him. He’d noticed his soles were just as thick as his palms but he hadn’t thought he could…
“Hello, Bakugou-chan!” a particularly annoying voice chirped. “What are you doing on the floor?”
“Fuck off, canadian baguette.”
“I am French, monsieur— ”
“You’ll be fucking french toast in a moment if you don’t shove off.”
Aoyama huffed and shifted over to the weight ball racks. “You shouldn’t destroy school property so recklessly monsieur.”
“I’ll fucking do what I want, you shitfaced rat bastard.”
Aoyama had the audacity to laugh. Bakugou’s fingers twitched.
“It is very good to have you back in class, Bakugou-chan.”
Normally Bakugou’d rip off the head of anyone who called him ‘chan’ but honestly, Aoyama called everyone that and he didn’t want or need special treatment from the faux french man, fuck you.
“You may be uncouth, rough, loud, angry, aggressive—”
“Get to the fucking point.”
“But,” Aoyama continued, “you push everyone to be their very best. You are,” he hummed a bit, fishing for the words, “the symbol of courage for our class. So though you’re a bastard—”
“—you’re our bastard.”
“Thanks for the fucking pep talk, sparkle shit. Now get the flying fuck out of my face before I bake you into a linguini.”
Aoyama flounced away.
Bakugou rubbed his eyes and got up, prodding the melted punching bag.
Quirk practice and then…
Back to the courthouse for yet another tour of the courtroom.
LOUD HIGH PITCHED SCREAMING
so i might uh
be semi-homeless atm???? but weirdly enough im actually better off now so i'll take it
also im. love theater holy shit and about to do some therapy shit so i'll have more coping skills to throw at you all soon :D
When Bakugou was small, he’d sit in front of the television and watch as All Might decimated his enemies, bodies broken and bruised beneath the weight of his power. He’d watch one massive foot crack spines, large glove-clad fist send teeth flying and blood gushing from snapped noses. It was brutal, vicious, and ugly beneath the veneer of heroics and the music underplaying the news.
When Bakugou was small, he absorbed the violence and viciousness and associated it with victory and heroism.
And so his own childish exuberance and playful aggression twisted into cruelty and viciousness. When he saw weakness in others, or what he believed to be weakness, he crushed it.
He was a hero, after all. He was only helping them in the long run.
“You’re weak, Baku-chan,” He said, lips just barely above his ear as he signed with his free hand in the corner of Bakugou’s eye.
“I’m not weak,” he spat at the therapist the court had assigned him. “I don’t fucking need this. Any of this.”
“Needing help doesn’t mean you’re weak, Bakugou-kun,” the therapist said and Bakugou wanted to punch his smile off his face.
He wanted out.
He wanted shit to go back to the way it was before all of this but it couldn’t and it fucking made him want to scream.
“I don’t need help.”
“We all need help sometimes.”
“Well I fucking don’t! I’m gonna be the number one hero, no matter what anyone fucking says, no matter what anyone fucking does!”
The words spilled out of him like gasoline on a fire, burning and scalding his throat as he felt His fingers on his wrists, on his shoulders, on his throat.
“I’ll tame your brutality.”
He spun and stormed out of the office, slamming the door behind him. Ignoring the sudden influx of eyes on him from the various court officials scattered throughout the hallway, he took off into a sprint.
The whispers of his past seemed to haunt him as he ran. Villain. Vicious. Criminal. Villain.
He was too violent, too loud, too strong, too much. He was too powerful. His quirk was vicious and strong and explosive and villainous, no matter what anyone said to his face. He knew the truth.
Better to be cordial with the kid who was destined to be a villain to his face. Maybe he’ll spare you, one day.
Bakugou knew when he was being used but he’d been so desperate for attention and affirmation and power, to prove he wasn’t weak, to prove he could be as strong as All Might and one day have no one ever hurt him again that he’d accepted it, rallying his followers users around him and twisting his teacher’s fear into faux respect.
The sun almost blinded him as he stumbled into the grass, the muted roar of the city closing around his skin.
When Bakugou was small, he’d watched All Might pummel his enemies into submission and called that strength and heroism.
When Bakugou was older, he’d watched Deku not just catch up with him but threaten to surpass him, gathering their classmates around him and rallying them, becoming a hero in a way he couldn’t even begin to understand.
His throat closed up as he felt the sun seep into his skin, unnoticeably slowly darkening the tan expanses of his arms.
It almost felt like a curse.
His strength had meant nothing in the face of Him. Power, viciousness, aggression, ruthlessness…
He was helpless.
The unfairness of it all curled up in his throat and he wanted to scream. To let the smoke curl around him and burns etch their way into his skin and see the earth around him crumble and scorched.
He wanted to see Him burning at his feet, skin peeling away from bone except he didn’t, he just wanted him to be gone, to leave him alone, to never see or talk to him again and just get the fuck on with his life without being so fucking afraid.
After all, he deserved it, didn’t he? It wasn’t like he’d ever stopped when one of the kids he beat up begged him to. It was karma.
Bakugou pushed his guilt away, compressing it into a tiny ball that sat in the bottom of his spine, heavy and cold. Guilt was useless, or so he’d thought. It only slowed him down, made him soft like Deku.
Deku, who’d faced motherfucking Stain and come out on top.
Deku, who seemed to be catching up at a rate that fucking scared the shit out of Bakugou, though he’d never admit it out loud.
Deku, who held all the fucking cards and could send Bakugou’s glass house tumbling down with a single word.
And he called Deku the worthless one.
The irony seemed to carve itself into his bones. He’d lost more than he’d won, coming in second or worse for the majority of the year. He’d been kidnapped more than once, tied up in front of millions, turned into a damsel and now—
Swallowing hard, he tried to ignore the phantom taste in his mouth.
His arrogance and confidence seemed like a distant dream.
He just wanted shit to go back to normal but he knew it never would.
It never could.
“You need to move on,” the school counsellor had said. “Accept what happened and begin to heal from it. Doing that means understanding that your world has shifted and that it is okay. Change isn’t necessarily a bad thing. You have space to heal and grow. Don’t waste it. Take your time. Accept what happened.”
Maybe Bakugou was a coward, but he didn’t want to accept it. He wanted this to stop. To reverse.
To go back.
Back to when the good crushed the bad and might ruled and he was the best no matter how much his mother screamed how useless he was and kids whispered how he’d be a villain and how his hearing was disintegrating bit by bit by bit—
He wanted to pretend everything was alright again.
But it wasn’t. And it wouldn’t be, not for a while.
And that hurt almost more than everything else.
The sun turning his hair almost white, he slunk into the crowds and headed home towards U.A., ignoring the stares and whispers.
imagine blossoms falling from a cherry tree. as each petal falls, breathe in and out until you are calm.