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Burn the Witch

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It is nearing noon when a moving truck that follows a Pajero stop in front of the vacant house to their left, a quaint two-story house at the end of their street. Compared to the modern black and white style of the Bakugou house, it is old-fashioned with its wooden accents. Katsuki is sure that the house is as old as his grandparents.

His mom hums from behind him as they both watch a man and a woman step out of the Pajero and the man starts talking to the movers. “Newly-weds, huh?” She guesses, eyes not stopping to observe their new neighbors as she steps into her work heels.

When the movers began carrying boxes inside the house, his mom turns to him then pulls his pants up and straightens his shirt. Before he could complain, his mom already opening their front door. “C’mon, let’s greet the new neighbors.”

“I thought you’re gonna be late for work?” Katsuki grumbles.

His mom tugs his hair harshly and pulls him near her and out of the door. “Let go of me, you old hag!”

“I’m not gonna go there and chitchat. Their place is probably dusty as hell.” She moves her hand down to his shoulder with a firm grip. Once she’s near her car, she calls out to their neighbors

“Hey!” Both the man and the woman look over. “Welcome to the neighborhood! We’ll bring some welcoming cookies soon! My son-“

“Oi!”

“-makes some bombass cookies so look forward to that!”

The man simply bows and continues helping the movers carry their boxes. The woman has a wobbly but genuine smile on her face. “Thank you!” She says softly but loud enough for them to hear her.

Katsuki shrugs his mom’s hand off his shoulder. “I’m not gonna make some goddamn cookies for them!” He hisses.

She shrugs as she opens her car’s door. “No cookies, no PlayStation.” She smirks at him.

With a glare, he pushes her in. “Fine!”

She laughs victoriously. “Behave yourself, alright? Lunch is in the fridge. Your dad will bring home dinner.”

“Yeah, yeah. Just go. You’ll really gonna be fucking late this time.”

“Love you too, Katsuki.” She says as she pulls out of their driveway.

When her car is out of sight, Katsuki turns back to their new neighbor just in time to see the woman open an umbrella and the car door to the backseat. A boy around his age steps out.

He has a wild mess of curly hair just like the man and-

Bright green eyes glances at him as he walks towards the house with the woman still holding the umbrella over him. Without any regard to him, green eyes returns it’s sight to the house in front of it.

Katsuki scoffs and walks back inside.

He already got a feeling he wouldn’t like that boy.

 


 

The next day, his parents coincidentally have the same off-day.

With a Tupperware of freshly-baked cookies in hand, he hangs at the back of his parents as they knock on the old-wooden front door of their new neighbors.

The woman opens the door with a questioning expression that turns into pleasantly surprised. “Oh, hello!”

“Hi! We are the ones living next door.” His dad points at the direction of their house. “I wasn’t able to meet you yesterday but I believe you’ve met my wife and son?”

“Oh yes!”The woman giggles and turns her attention to his mom and Katsuki. “It’s nice to see you both again. Oh, are those the cookies?”

His mom pulls him forward. “Yep! Baked by my son here just this morning.”

The woman opens the door wider. “I hope you have time to enjoy those wonderful cookies with some tea.”

“Of course!” His mom says as his dad nods with a smile.

Katsuki inwardly sighs, already feeling the exhaustion from socialising.

“Hisashi! Izuku! We have guests!” The woman calls out, closing the door behind them.

It’s hard to believe they just moved in yesterday with how organised and homey their house already is. Furnitures and decorations are already arranged neatly and the overall interior is clean without any speck of spider webs and dust at the corners.

A moment later, the stoic man walks down the stairs with the snob boy. Compared to the everyone in the house, the boy is dressed more formally with his slacks and button-up shirt. Almost the same outfit as yesterday.

“Are you always ready for a church mass or something?” Katsuki blurts out.

His mom pinches him near his elbow and the sudden sharp sting of pain makes him flinch. “Sorry for my rude son. This is Katsuki, by the way. I hope his cookies will make up for his behaviour.” She amends with a bashful smile.

“It’s no problem.” The boy replies. His voice is deeper than what Katsuki expected and his green eyes are still as bright as the last time he have seen it. He blinks and when the boy opens his eyes again, it almost looks glowing.

The bottom of the Tupperware slowly becomes warmer until it becomes unbearable in his hands, making him reflexively let go of it. His mom thankfully catches it before it falls to the ground.

“Katsuki!” His mom scolds at the same time as the woman hisses “Izuku!”

The boy blinks again and the strange vibrance of his eyes disappears. He walks to the kitchen without anymore word, a slight upwards tug playing on his lips.

What the fuck.

 


 

The impromptu tea time carried on without any more unsavoury affair.

Katsuki would have appreciated the expensive green tea more if it isn’t two in the afternoon in the middle of summer. He spots some small patches of sweat appearing at the back of his dad’s shirt and his mom only takes small sips of the tea. Still his parents chats with the Midoriya’s like civilised adults that they pretend they are.

Meanwhile, the teenagers in the room spends the time with a stare-off. With only a table separating them, Katsuki notices the freckles that are sprinkled on the snob boy’s cheeks. Izuku never removes the small grin from his face and answers his parents questions politely and straight to the point. His smile and freckles makes him look youthful and naive that Katsuki finds himself distrusting of the new neighbor more and more.

The boy moves with such grace that shouldn’t be possible with a male teenager. He nibbles on the cookies like a Victorian pubescent girl, keeping his mouth shut as he chews delicately. He even props his pinky out when he drinks tea! Katsuki plants his feet on the floor, ready to bolt out of the pretentious house when his parents are already done with their chit-chat.

The old hag even has a pleased smile as the tea time goes on. No doubt that Katsuki would hear about how polite and sweet Izuku is and how their explosive son should be the same.

It made Katsuki scowl the whole occasion. The fact that the snob boy looks at him as if he’s being dissected doesn’t help. When his face suddenly light up after long minutes of staring, Katsuki felt a shudder go down his spine.

Because despite the warm and inviting expression Izuku has, his eyes looks like it’s hiding something else.

What a fucking creep.

 


 

Katsuki doesn’t see Izuku until two weeks later.

There is finally some thin clouds that fill the sky and strong winds that make the heat bearable. He takes his old bike for a ride around their small town. There are some rusting parts that makes a creaking squeak sound every time he takes a turn.

He almost didn’t see him if Izuku did not jump over the fence of the park. To be fair, it’s only a thick, short bush that surrounds the park and closes it from the forest of the mountain. Katsuki presses on the break of his bike and watches the curly mess of a hair disappear in the woods.

Maybe Izuku only accidentally threw something in the woods before he passed by. The sun appears from behind the clouds and the heat beats down harshly on him, making his skin itch.

But, the boy did not emerge from the trees.

Katsuki pedals to where he disappeared. Hoping over the bushy fence, he manages to spot Izuku’s back, still going deeper into the woods.

He follows him, almost tripping the big roots that crawls on the ground.

It is cool under the shade of the trees. The howl of the wind feels refreshing like a cold glass of water rather than the sharp warm winds that’s been hitting his skin since the start of summer.

He spots Izuku again, his back still turned. As he nears the boy, Katsuki hears him talking. It is already weird if he was talking to himself but he’s talking as if there is somebody else.

“No, no! I just want to be friends, if that’s alright? I don’t see your kind in Tokyo. You know how intimidating it is for-“ He abruptly stops, his body tensing.

Then, he suddenly turns, almost like a snap. His eyes eerily glows like that time during the house visit.

“Why are you here?” Izuku asks. Strangely, there is a rumble in his voice that sounds like there’s also someone else voicing the same question.

The air around them stills.

“Saw you. Got curious.” He answers simply, ignoring the cold sweat slowly rolling down his nape.

Izuku remains unmoving, clutching an open blue notebook on his chest. He notices Katsuki looking at the notebook and moves to hide it at his back.

Katsuki takes the opportunity to snatch the notebook from his hands.

Izuku rushes to get it back, making them stand closer to each other with only a few centimetres distancing the fabric of their clothes. Katsuki holds it over his own head, pushing away the curly haired boy who’s already on his toes.

“Oho, what do we have here?” He folds the notebook open with one hand. Rough sketches fills the page. They’re messy and it’s obvious that it has been done in a rush.

“Hey! Give it back!” This is the loudest he have ever heard Izuku speak. His usual collected demeanour is also replaced with a panicky look.

He looks back to the sketches. They look like small figure of people. And, are those wings at their back?

“I said give it back!” Izuku yells then something wraps at his ankles and drags Katsuki down.

It happens so fast that he did not realise what has happened until he got a face full of dirt. Izuku snatches the notebook from his hand and he hears him run away.

With a groan, Katsuki pushes himself up to stand.

The wind starts howling again and the other boy is no longer to be found.

 


 

Constant chatter shakes Katsuki awake.

Begrudgingly, he opens his eyes and presses his phone on.

2:57 A.M.

Irritation flares under his skin. He moves to go out of his door and yell for his parents to shut their trap when he realises that the lights outside his room are off.

The noise is from the outside, not inside the house.

He pulls his curtains to the side. In an instant, the chatter stops. He looks around their lot and spots no one, not even their shadow.

He can hear his heartbeat pounding hard in his chest.

Katsuki steps back, letting the curtain fall, then sits on the edge of his bed. He watches the soft flutter of the thin cloth and the shadows that play on it.

Slowly, the chatter returns.

Gritting his teeth, Katsuki stomps towards the window and throws back the curtains again. The noise didn’t stop this time. He slams his window screen open.

“Hey! Wherever you are; shut the fuck up!” He yells.

The noise become louder and something tugs on both of his hands, making him lose balance. It is enough to make him fall out of his window and if it wasn’t for his tight grip on his window pane, he would have already broken a bone.

Something tickles his left ear.

“This is what you get for being mean to-!”

He hears a slam of wood against wood. The whispers hushes and the force pulling him down disappears. With his rush of adrenaline, he pushes himself up back to his room.

Once he’s back safely inside, he hears the same wooden sound. He looks back outside. Still, there is no one, nothing, in sight and the window adjacent to his remains shut.

 


 

“It's just a dream.” He tells himself in the morning after. He rinses his toothbrush, ignoring the stinging of the scrapes on his palm. Thankfully, the cuts are not that deep but he still had to remove a splinter of wood that dug on his skin.

His eyes feel dry and swollen from staring at his bedroom window until the sun came up in the horizon. He splashes some cold tap water on his eyes to relieve the discomfort. He tries to rationalize the events last night but he can not help but to be hyper-aware of every shadow that moves behind him and little noises from inside and outside their house. He grips the corners of his sink and eyes his reflection.

“Just a dream.”