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the problem of letting teenagers get drunk

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Momo liked to think that she was a well-centered girl with her priorities straight, so it was pretty surprising to realize that she actually liked a boy from her class. Joining U.A., she had no intention whatsoever to find a boyfriend – Momo, like her co-rep, came from a wealthy family of heroes, and it was her duty as a legacy to continue on the task. Besides, she loved to help people. That had nothing to do with anything involving a boy, let alone a cute, chivalrous boy that treated her well.

She had no experience in the romantic aspect of life at all, so for a long time Momo wasn’t sure if her pining was platonic; as someone who rarely ever made friends, let alone with boys, it was hard to know if it was a real thing until that party at the end of the Cultural Festival, when someone spiked the punch and said boy… drunkenly confessed.

Mr. Todoroki... He had asked her to call him “Shoto”, but she couldn’t. It was hard enough to drop the “Mister”, calling him by his first name would be too forward. He had been drunk after all, there was no telling if he actually meant what he’d say at the time.

“Alcohol always spills the truth, Momo,” Mina told her one afternoon. “That boy – like every boy, but that’s not the point – wants you. Who was he again?”

Momo smiled.

“Nice try,” she replied and Mina pouted.

“Damn, you are hard to crack. No wonder he had to drink himself stupid to confess.”

The talk with Mina was only half helpful because then Momo felt kind of bad. Had her “centeredness” really been the cause of Todoroki’s drinking and consequently massive hangover the next day? It couldn’t be, right? No one knew at the beginning of the party that the punch had been spiked, they only suspected when Iida started dancing with Tsuyu.

She had to clear things up, and she had to do that as soon as possible. Meaning, as soon as she had the courage to; and it took awhile, but she managed.

Tracking down where Todoroki would be that Saturday afternoon, Momo got on the train and skipped town, using the excuse that one of her favorite stores was opening downtown, which wasn’t a complete lie. She found him on the same street as her store laughing as a little girl with ginger hair chatted with him pointing at balloons tied to a cotton candy cart. From where she stood, she couldn’t make out what they were saying, but Momo figured they were waiting for their candy to be ready, and so she approached them silently, the busy street muffling her steps.

“There you go,” Todoroki said handing the candy to the girl, who took it excitedly.

“Thank you, you’re the best!” she beamed and ran away to meet a young lady with white and red hair like him.

“Should I be worried?” Momo joked as a way of hello, and Todoroki turned around surprised, eyes widening when he realized it was her. It had been hard to grow a pair and stand in front of him now, so Momo though she might as well overuse them. “Do I have competition?”

“What?” Todoroki asked confused and she looked at the little girl; he followed her gaze. “Oh, no, that’s my niece, my older brother’s daughter. She’s a sweetie. I don’t see her often.”

Momo smiled, unable to hide how she was liking to see him almost trip on his words as he tried to explain himself, and it might have tipped him off because he suddenly started to blush.

“... It was a joke,” he concluded and she nodded chuckling.

“Yeah, it was,” she said blushing a bit too.

Awkwardly, Todoroki scratched his nose and looked away before talking to her again.

“What brought you here?”

“Forever 21,” she said pointing at the busy store a few meters from them.

“Oh,” Todoroki said, jaw-dropping some. “Good luck with that.”

She made a face.

“Feels like I’m going to need it,” she agreed, and then looked in his eyes. “I… actually want to talk to you too, but perhaps you’d rather spend the time with your niece. I’m sorry for interrupting.”

“No, it’s okay,” he said quickly, touching her arm briefly. “She’s staying for the holidays, I’ll have plenty of time.”

Momo smiled again and the both of them equally blushed. They were so helpless…

Todoroki looked away first and then offered a suggestion.

“Cotton candy? It’s on me.”

How chivalrous.

She shouldn’t, honestly. She was on a diet. But what the hell, her creations came from the lipids in her body, she could have empty calories.

“Only if you’re having some too.”

To her surprise, Todoroki smiled and it was the best thing she’d ever seen.

“Thought you’d never ask,” he said and gestured at the vendor. It would be a good day.