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Candy Canes And Christmas Crackers

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“Wait, ok, so let me get this straight-” Kirishima started, sighing deeply to compose himself before Kaminari interrupted him.

“There is nothing straight about this situation, dude.” Kaminari squeaked out between giggles, wiping a tear from his eye as Kirishima slammed his hand down on the table and was taken by another fit of howling laughter. It was too early in the morning for Bakugou to be dealing with this shit and he glared over the rim of his coffee mug as they all sat at a table in the dorm kitchen. The holiday break of their third year at UA was about to start and things were surprisingly quiet around the dorms. Small flurries of snow were already falling outside the window while the students got ready to go home or were still asleep.

“Would you two shut the fuck up already, I’m serious here.”

“Sorry, sorry.” Kirishima took yet another breath in and calmed himself before saying, “So….your huge family somehow all think that you have a long term boyfriend and are insisting that you bring him to your week long Christmas family reunion?” Despite his efforts the end of his question raised in pitch as Kirishma swallowed down a giggle.

“How does that even happen?” Kaminari added popping some of the hashbrowns Bakugou made into his mouth. After waking up and realizing the situation he had put himself in he ended up making enough breakfast to feed six people while trying to burn off his frustrated energy. A few classmates had filtered into the kitchen but most turned away once they saw him furiously whisking eggs looking like he was ready to purposefully set fire to the kitchen. He’d texted these two chucklefucks to come eat so the food wouldn’t go to waste which was how they ended up in this conversation. Though at this point it felt less like a conversation and more of an excuse for them to laugh at his pain, great friends that they were.

Bakugou sighed and chugged half of his coffee before slamming the mug down on the table and leaning back in his chair to explain. “The fucking family group chat woke me up. My Aunt Akasuki discovered how to use technology and made a text chain with everyone in my family that can hold a damn cellphone and the notifications never stop.” He took his silenced phone out of his pocket, pinching the bridge of his nose as he turned it for Kirishima and Kaminari to see. Texts were coming in as he held it up, with a small number indicating that he had more than 100 other unread messages. “When the texts woke me up in the middle of the night I was pissed off and it just got worse when I looked at my phone and saw they were talking about my dating life again. I don’t know why they are so obsessed with that shit but every fucking year they get on my case about if I’m seeing someone. I just wanted them to drop it and for some reason I thought it was a good idea to text them ‘I have a boyfriend’. I didn’t even look at their responses I just silenced my phone and went back to sleep. When I woke up I had approximately three-fucking-hundred texts and my family telling me how much they can’t wait to meet my boyfriend at Christmas. I even have a voicemail from my mom bitching me out for not telling her earlier.”

After a few taps on his phone screen he had the voicemail up and playing. He didn’t even need to put it on speaker for them to be able to hear the immediate screaming of his mother, “You asshole! You go off and date someone and you don’t tell me? Do you know how god damn embarrassing it was when your Aunt Hisa asked me about your boyfriend and I had to admit I had no clue what the fuck she was talking about. I sounded like an idiot. I am your mother, I gave up my entire life to raise you and you hide shit like this from me? I don’t know how the hell you found someone to put up with your bullshit when you won’t even tell your own mother something as important as your first boyfriend-” With a click he turned it off. The message was long enough that his voicemail ran out of space.

While they’d managed to calm their laughter as Bakugou explained his plight, after a short pause Kaminari let out a pained wheeze trying not to laugh and Kirishima wasn’t faring much better. Bakugou, meanwhile, began to consider just running away to the snowy mountains to camp and fight bears during his Christmas break.

“Why not just tell them it was a mistake?” Kirishima offered while Kaminari tried to learn to breathe again.

“They’d never let me live it down. I’d be hearing about it until I’m married.” He made a mildly disgusted face at the word married, picking his coffee back up and taking a sip. “So I’d never hear the end of it.”

“I’d offer to pose as your ‘boyfriend’ but my family is going to a ski lodge this year. I can’t get out of that.” Kaminari looked in thought for a moment before quietly adding, “I’d be great at it, though.”

“Yeah, I wouldn’t be able to do that either. I am supposed to go visit my grandma this year. Sorry, Bakubro.”

He pointed a finger at the two with a scowl, about to ask why the hell they think he would want either of them to be even his fake boyfriend when a tired voice piped up behind him.

“I’ll be your boyfriend.”

Bakugou’s head whipped around in shock - he knew whose voice that was. He wasn’t sure exactly when his classmate had entered the kitchen, but it was apparently long enough ago that he’d overheard Bakugou’s situation. Todoroki stood at the fridge and made slightly disconcerting eye contact, holding a carton of orange juice in his hand. He continued to stare as he waited for some kind of response and Bakugou suppressed a horrified shudder as he brought the carton to his lips to drink directly out of it. His hair was messy, the red and white strands mixing together instead of the usual perfect part. He looked tired, like he hadn’t gotten much sleep, and was wearing well worn blue pajama pants and a gray t-shirt meaning he must have just gotten out of bed.

“What’s wrong with you? Don’t just say shit like that.” Bakugou meant for that to come out with more bite than it actually did. “How long have you been standing there?”

“Long enough.” Todoroki shrugged and placed the nearly empty carton back in the fridge, which caused Bakugou’s eyebrow to twitch, and reached into the bread box to grab a slice of bread. “You need someone to come to your family party and pretend to be your boyfriend? I can do that.”

"No, you fucking can not do that. I'm going to be at my aunt's house for an entire week, like hell you could keep it up that long.” Todoroki was too busy trying to work the toaster to even look at him which only served to make Bakugou more pissed off. "Plus if I had to live my life knowing you might've put your backwash orange juice back in my fucking fridge I'd light myself on fire. You can’t just- what are you doing to that bread."

While he was talking Todoroki made the conscious decision to forgo the toaster and just put the bread on the counter, placing his left hand on top of the slice. A moment later smoke began to rise from it.

“Toast.” Was all he said picking the bread up, which had a toasted hand print on it, off of the counter and biting into it. How does someone live like this?

“This is what I’m talking about. Why would I even let you near my family when you do shit like this.”

“I can be charming.” Todoroki said after swallowing a piece of his ‘toast’. Bakugou almost laughed at the idea of the other boy being charming in any way. It must have shown on his face, somehow, because Todoroki tilted his head before continuing, “After the week is over you would eventually have to tell your family that we broke up anyway. So why does it matter?”

"Yeah, no. Absolutely not. I'd rather ask-“ His mind rolled though people that would make a good insult like Deku, Mineta, or that blond bitch from Class B he can’t remember the name of but quickly thinks, no way. He’s not desperate enough to even put those suggestions out there as a joke. Todoroki just looked at him with his head still cocked to the side with that same damn neutral expression, waiting for him to finish the sentence. "Whatever, fuck off."

“Is that a yes?”

“It’s a Fuck Off. Why would you even want to be stuck in a house with my family for a week, anyway?”

“I don’t want to go home for the holidays.”

That stopped his brain right in its tracks and judging by the vaguely surprised look on Todoroki’s own face he was also shocked by himself readily admitting that. For Bakugou the surprise quickly morphed into anger. The worst part was he knew this anger wasn’t even at the idea of spending the holidays with Todoroki. It was directed at Endeavor and whatever the boy’s shitty father must have done to make him feel that way. The decision Bakugou made didn’t take long at all.

“If you aren’t ready by 5 tonight I’m leaving your ass here.”

Todoroki just nodded and for the first time in this conversation actually seemed speechless. Then he just shoved the rest of the ‘toast’ into his mouth and made a swift exit from the kitchen. Bakugou leaned his head back massaging his temples, already feeling a headache coming on. He sighed, turning back around in his chair, and realized that he had forgotten Kirishima and Kaminari were even there since they had been oddly quiet during the whole exchange. Kaminari had his elbows on the table and his chin resting on his hands looking at Katsuki with a smirk. Kirishima was leaning back in his seat grinning at him with the same knowing look in his eyes.

“Shut up.” Bakugou growled, grabbing his coffee off the table and standing up to leave the room too.

“We didn’t say anything!” Kirishima called after him as he stalked off.


»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

Bakugou walked outside with his bags half expecting Todoroki to not show up but, of course, as soon as he neared the parking lot he could see the boy waiting there. He stood next to his bag, which looked too small for someone spending a week away, looking up at the sky as a light snowfall came down. His breath came out in light puffs from the cold air and he was wearing a jacket that for anyone else would be far too thin for the winter months. The sight actually caused Bakugou to hesitate just for a moment before ruining it by briskly brushing past him.

“Hurry up. If we want to beat the damn holiday traffic we have to leave now.” He didn’t look back and just started making his way to his car. For a moment he thought Todoroki wasn’t going to follow him until he heard shuffling behind him. Soon enough he was walking beside him causing Bakugou to speed up to stay ahead which proved to be difficult. Fuck tall people and their long legs. Once they reached his car he opened the trunk with an angry huff before throwing his bags inside. He finally turned to look at the taller boy and saw he was watching him with an unreadable expression.

“What the fuck are you staring at me for? Put your shit in the trunk and let’s go.”

“There’s snow stuck in your hair.” Todoroki pointed out while placing his bag in the trunk with his.

“Uh, yeah, it’s snowing . We can't all have a quirk that melts snow a foot and a half before it can even touch us.” Even though he felt the urge to slam the trunk of his car closed he did it softly since no one, not even him, treats his car like that. As he walked over and opened the driver side door he shook out whatever snow was in his hair.

“You’re like a wet dog.”

“Just get in the car, asshole.” As soon as he sat down he started the car up and quickly turned on the heat for it to warm up.

“That’s no way to talk to your boyfriend.” Todoroki said casually as he got in and closed the door behind him.

“I told you not to say it like that.”

“You should probably get used to it if you want your family to believe we’re dating.”

“Whatever.” Bakugou growled out. The other boy had a point but there was no way he would actually say that. “Put on your fucking seat belt, Icyhot.”

He then put his car into drive and sped out of the parking lot fast enough for Todoroki to actually make a noise of surprise, quickly fastening his seat belt. Bakugou smirked, he loved his car.

“Shouto.” Todoroki said out of the blue.

“What?” The smirk fell from his face and he glanced at the other boy in his peripheral vision.

“If we want this plan to work we should probably call each other by our first names. Calling me Todoroki, Icyhot, or ‘half ’n half bastard’ might be a touch suspicious.” Todoroki pointed out as he leaned down to pick up Bakugou’s CD case and began to browse through the collection. "I've been using Shouto as my hero name anyway, you should be used to it by now."

"You still need to change that before we graduate, it's fucking dumb,” He grit his teeth for a moment, deliberating. “Fine, call me Katsuki. You call me Kacchan and I'll castrate you."

“Wouldn’t dream of it, Katsuki.” He replied snidely still flipping through his albums. The sound of his name coming from Todoroki caused his heart to beat rapidly in his chest. No one outside of his family actually called him Katsuki, making him feel weird and anxious - especially when said by the boy next to him. He could feel his hands start to sweat against the wheel.

After a moment of silence Todoroki suddenly said, “Do you smell caramel?”

"Shut the fuck up, it's me." Without thinking, he removed a hand from the wheel of the car to wipe the sweat off on his jeans.

Todoroki now looked up at him curiously. “How can you tell me to shut up and then say that it's you. Explain."

He realized that this really was the first time the two of them had been in an enclosed space alone like this if he was just now noticing the smell. He knew that Todoroki wouldn’t let it go until he explained and they still had 45 minutes left of driving to get to his aunt’s house. “I sweat nitroglycerin, the stuff smells like burnt sugar.”

“What does it-” Todoroki began, but was interrupted when Katsuki suddenly slammed on the breaks as a car cut them off.

“Mother fucker- hold up.” The blond didn’t hesitate to roll down his window and pop his head out of it to yell, “Did you get your license from a fucking cereal box!? Use your blinker, asswipe!”

He slumped back into his seat pissed off and trying to keep his quirk under control because the last thing he needed was to make the steering wheel explode since his hands were still sweaty. Todoroki stared at him for a moment, apparently with no intention of finishing his sentence, which Katsuki could guess was because he did just do that while driving at 80 mph down the highway in the snow without swerving. After getting situated again he was about to roll his window back up until Todoroki started speaking again.

“Streets of Gold by 3OH!3?” He questioned. Katsuki’s head snapped to him for a moment taking his eyes off the road and he saw him holding up the CD with an eyebrow raised. The last thing he wanted was it getting out that he liked that band enough to keep a CD in his car. He prided himself on his music tastes and even made fun of Kaminari and Ashido for listening to them. They had been dancing and singing along to the song My Dick though, so he wasn’t wrong in his judgment, but it was definitely something he didn’t want to be associated with.

On pure basic instinct he snatched the CD out of Todoroki’s hand and flung it out of the still open window like a frisbee.

The regret he felt was immediate, as much as he hated to admit it he loved that album. The need to get rid of the evidence had outweighed the fact that it wouldn’t do any good because Todoroki had already seen the truth. When he looked at the other boy he noticed that even though his expression was relatively neutral there was a spark of amusement in his eyes. Katsuki found it hard to tear his eyes away from that to look back at the road.

“It’s not good to litter.” Todoroki commented.

“Yeah, well it’s not good to go through other people’s shit!” He hissed back, gripping the wheel tightly. Todoroki closed the CD collection placing it back where he had found it before fishing his phone out of his pocket and gesturing to the aux cord.

“Before I plug this in promise me you aren’t going to throw my phone out the window.”

“Don’t tempt me.”

Katsuki never liked it when others had control over the music in his car, he didn’t like when others had control in general. Of his friends the person he actually trusted the most with the aux cord was Ashido and even then after about half an hour of her playing her pop music he would need it to change. So, needless to say, he was apprehensive about the idea of Todoroki picking the music. Although, he was curious about what kind of music the other boy would listen to. After a moment of thought Todoroki seemed to have made his choice and music began to play.

“Tch, I shouldn’t be surprised you like songs off Folie a Deux.” Katsuki muttered as the song What A Catch, Donnie by Fall Out Boy played.

“Why?” Todoroki’s head tilted a bit and he seemed actually curious about Katsuki’s answer.

The truth was that it just made sense for him and Katsuki’s not sure why he hadn’t thought of it earlier, especially now that they’d known each other for three years. Like hell he was going to say that out loud though. “It’s their most emo album to date. Of course you of all people would like it.”

“Sounds like you know the album pretty well.”

“If you’re insinuating that I like this music then you are sorely mistaken.” When he said this Todoroki shrugged eyeing him incredulously but there was no way Katsuki was going to admit to his emo phase in early middle school. They fell into a surprisingly comfortable silence after that just listening to the music as he put his attention back to the road.

It took about two minutes for Katsuki to start humming along quietly and Todoroki to throw him a knowing look. The blond was too focused on the road to see it, which was probably for the best.


»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

Surprisingly, the car ride wasn’t as bad as he thought it would be, or at least after the CD incident it wasn’t. They did hit some of the holiday traffic which had made him want to rip his hair out and even though he denied it when Todoroki questioned him, he absolutely spent 15 minutes driving around very lost. But still, it wasn’t as bad as he thought it’d be, mostly due to Todoroki. He would have bet money on the fact the two of them would be at each other's throats in an enclosed space like this for such a long time. Sure, during their second year they came to some kind of silent understanding that they weren’t going to be complete dickheads to each other, but they were still nowhere near friends. So it was shocking that the car ride for the most part was them going between civil conversations and bouts of comfortable silence listening to music. He swore he even saw the boy smile when he shocked Katsuki by playing a song off the album he’d thrown out the window earlier in the drive.

It was around six when they finally arrived at his Aunt Mineko’s house. Well, really the place was more of a western style mansion even though she never married and never had any kids. According to her that was the way she wanted to keep it and Katsuki could respect that. The scale of the the place made it perfect for Christmas with his family since it had the ability to actually house all of them. Lights were intricately hung up around the roof which his aunt had probably paid someone to do. Out of everyone in his family she was the one with the most money and she loved to show it. Many cars were parked around the house making Katsuki realize they must be the last ones to show up. God, his mom was going to kill him.

As they got the bags out of the trunk Todoroki looked around at the cars with interest. “How many people are in your family?”

Katsuki let out a short humorless laugh. “A lot. My mom’s side of the family is huge since everyone just won’t stop having kids. Don’t worry about it if you can’t remember all of their names, it might actually humble them.”

“You don’t like having a big family?” He asked walking side by side with Katsuki as he made his way to the door. It was infuriating that he insisted on doing that.

“It’s fucking hell! None of them know shit about personal space and everyone is always trying to get into everyone else’s damn business. That’s how this situation even happened. You’re not going to hear true silence until we get the hell out of this place.” He dropped his bags in front of the door so he could press the doorbell with much more force than necessary. “Don’t trust any of them, especially my older cousins and the twins. Just remember that all of them are fucking psychopat-”

Katsuki’s warning was cut off when suddenly the door creaked open and a hand shot out grabbing the taller boy by the front of his jacket like something out of a horror movie. Todoroki’s eyes widened a fraction and he let out a small surprised noise dropping his bag when he was yanked into the house. Katsuki didn’t even have a chance to see who it was before the door was slammed in his face.

Chapter Text

“Shit!” Katsuki grabbed the bags, which wasn’t an easy feat since he was left with all of them but the prospect of Todoroki being left alone with his family for any period of time without him there to run damage control was enough motivation to accomplish it. He kicked the door open and scanned the large foyer for Todoroki or his mysterious assailant. The front room was large with a grand staircase, decorated with garland and strings of soft lights, that lead up to the many bedrooms in the house. There was no sign of Todoroki around so without hesitation Katsuki hurled the bags across the room towards the stairs and ran down one of the many halls. “Todo- fuck ! Shouto!”

He paused and gave himself a moment of silence to try to hear some kind of response. He was only met with silence and was about to take off again in a different direction when he heard it.

“Hey everyone, look who we found!”

He recognized the boisterous voice of his cousin Mai and it was hard to miss the resulting commotion of his family from her words. He took off like a bat out of hell through the veritable labyrinth of a house in the direction of the sound, making his way to the living room. What he found was his three older cousins, Riku, Mai, and Airi, presenting Todoroki like he was some kind of prize they just won. Airi had her arm slung around the boy’s shoulders while Mai and Riku stood on either side of him. The rest of his family were gathered around to ask questions and meet Katsuki’s ‘boyfriend’. Todoroki’s eyes were wide and his expression could easily have been compared to that of a cat ready to bolt. Those mismatched eyes met his and Katsuki could see a small amount of relief flash through them. A new jolt of annoyance directed at his family sparked in him.

“You’re all scaring him. Give the boy some room.” His grandfather spoke up from his chair.

“Yeah, back off.” Katsuki growled, pushing through his family to get to Todoroki. “God, you people are a bunch of animals.” Spotting an unoccupied couch, he grabbed Airi by the arm she had slung across Todoroki's shoulders and just above her knees, scooping her into a brief bridal-carry before unceremoniously tossing her to the cushions. When she'd settled she stuck her tongue out at him, to which he replied with a raised eyebrow and a middle finger.

“Aw, come on. We just were excited to meet him. We’re already friends, right?” Riku said as he looked to Todoroki for confirmation with a grin that could only spell trouble. For a moment, Katsuki contemplated throwing him as well.

“Well-”

“Let me get a good look at him!” His Aunt Mineko interrupted Todoroki, placing her glass of wine on the fireplace mantle, her heels clacking on the hardwood floor as she walked up to him. She grabbed Todoroki by the jaw and turned his head back and forth as though she was performing an in depth inspection. “Strong jawline...beautiful eyes... very couture hair...and-” She forcibly opened his mouth, looked inside, and gasped turning to Katsuki without releasing Todoroki from her hold. “Perfect teeth! He could be a model, Katsuki, I’m impressed. You did a good job!”

She turned back to the other boy, who looked very uncomfortable, and finally let go of his mouth only to rest her hands on his shoulders. Leaning in she said, “You’re that boy from UA right? Let me know if this whole hero thing doesn’t work out and I’ll have a job for you in a heartbeat. I own one of the best modeling agencies-”

“Get your cougar paws off him!” Katsuki slapped her hands away and pulled Todoroki back towards him with a little too much force causing him to stumble into him a bit. On instinct the blond wrapped a protective arm around his waist, resting a hand on his hip. As he glared at his family he could feel the other boy relax under his hold and for a moment it felt like his brain needed a jumpstart, unsure of how exactly to process the other’s reaction.

Apparently, that show of weakness was just long enough for his Aunt Akasuki to yank Todoroki out of his grip and into a crushing hug causing him to immediately tense up again. “It’s so amazing to meet you! We were all so surprised to hear someone actually caught Katsuki’s eye. He was so adamantly against dating before, you really must be something special!”

“Here, let me get your coat for you!” His Aunt Hisa popped up behind Todoroki as Aunt Akasuki let go of him. Before he could even respond Aunt Hisa took his jacket off him revealing a black turtleneck sweater he was wearing underneath. It was a sweater Katsuki had noticed him wear many times before, with how the dark color brought out the shades of his eyes and the way the fabric clung to him perfectly. Unfortunately, how the sweater looked on him didn’t seem to go unnoticed by other members of his family as well.

“Do you have an older brother and how much does he look like you?" Mai asked linking her arm with Todoroki’s.

“He already has a-”

So you do have an older brother.”

“You know, if you and Katsuki don’t work out you can just call me!” Airi added, hopping up from the couch and linking their arms on his other side. Of his cousins Airi was the closest to Katsuki in age and was only a few years older than him.

“I’m very g-”

“I thought I told you all to back off!” Katsuki yelled as his family members kept pushing him back so they could get at Todoroki.

“You’re from Katsuki’s class aren’t you? We all watch him in the sports festival every year. Your quirk is amazing!” His Uncle Naoko ignored Katsuki as he enthusiastically shook Todoroki’s hand and pulled him away from his cousins before he had the chance to speak.

“Oh, you’re right!” His Aunt Rin, Naoko’s wife, joined him to look at Todoroki closer as though she could hardly believe he was there. “I’m shocked Katsuki was able to keep you hidden from us.”

“Katsuki just-”

“There’s no need to explain, sweetie. We know how he can be when it comes to his privacy.” Aunt Akasuki smiled and waved off any explanation he had.

“Don’t fucking talk about me like I’m not here!” He was about to try to get between them and Todoroki when his Aunt Hisa pulled him back by the collar of his coat. Katsuki made a strangled noise in annoyance as she took the coat off of him as well before hurrying away to put them on the coat rack. Most people in his family worked in the fashion industry so he actually made an effort to dress somewhat nicer than he usually did. He was wearing a deep red v-neck sweater and a pair of dark jeans that weren’t quite as baggy as ones he would normally wear. It was simple but effective enough that his family would be off his back about his fashion choices.  

Katsuki could see that Todoroki was getting quietly overwhelmed by the amount of people touching him and talking to him. At the moment, his Uncle Taiki was taking his clothing measurements while Riku’s wife, Jin, asked him about his personal style. He opened his mouth about to snap but the sound of pots banging together interrupted him.

“All of you calm the hell down!” His mother yelled putting the two pots she had been holding down on a table. “You haven’t even let him finish a damn sentence!”

The room quieted yet no one looked ashamed, which wasn’t surprising. Finally they had given Todoroki some room and Kasuki was able to make his way to his side, shooting glares at anyone who even looked like they were going to attempt getting close.

Todoroki broke the silence with his first complete sentence since he was dragged into the mansion. “You must be Katsuki’s mother.”

“What gave it away? The old hag’s cloven hooves or the smell of sulfur?” He hissed under his breath as his mom approached.

“I heard that, brat! Don’t be fucking rude! Especially when you show up late ! How long did you expect for us to wait for your ass?” His mother rebuked and was about to slap Katsuki in the back of the head but the hit never came. Todoroki held her by the wrist to stop the blow and she faced him in surprise. He seemed to also realize what he had done and released his grip.

“Sorry, I was acting on instinct.” Nothing about his tone actually supported his apology but he did seem a bit surprised by what he did. There was a tense moment where she just stared at him but Todoroki’s gaze didn’t falter as he held his ground. Katsuki knew her glare could level buildings just as efficiently as his quirk, and for a moment he thought she was going to use it, but instead her face broke into a smile.

“I like him!” Katsuki couldn’t find the words to respond to his mom saying that. Mostly due to the shock that Todoroki had somehow actually won her respect in barely two minutes. He wasn’t even sure that was something he had earned himself yet. “Don’t apologize for protecting my son. If you two are going into the hero business together I’d hope you’d look after him like that.”

“I don’t need any damn protection!”

“Yeah well you needed it when you got kidnapped in your first year!” She yelled, turning her attention back to her son.

“Would you get over that already! Stop bringing that shit up, it was years ago!” He hated how much his mom used that against him and could feel his blood pressure rising. He had done more than enough since then to prove he can take care of his damn self.

“Yeah, well, you’re lucky your friends-” Realization dawned on his mom’s face before she whipped back around to Todoroki pointing an accusatory finger at him. “You’re the ice boy aren’t you? You were one of the students on the news that helped him that day.”

“I really didn’t do that much compared to-” He was cut off by a hug again but this time by Katsuki’s mother.

“Thank you.” She said softly. Todoroki made no move to hug her back but she didn’t seem to care. Then her tone turned back to normal when she said, “I’m sorry you have to put up with his bullshit.”

This earned a loud laugh from his Grandpa and Katsuki wondered how he ever expected to live through this week.

“Embarrassing Katsuki already?” His father’s voice came from the other side of the room where he had just walked in from the kitchen. He was still wearing an apron from cooking dinner which was no surprise, his dad was the one he learned to cook from.

“It’s my right as a mother to embarrass him.” She countered but released the boy from the hug anyway. His dad made his way to his wife’s side and held out a hand for Todoroki to shake with a polite smile on his face. His father always managed to be a refuge from the chaos of the rest of his family and Katsuki was secretly grateful for that.

“I’m Masaru Bakugou, Katsuki’s father.” Todoroki shook the offered hand and almost looked relieved that he wasn’t forced into yet another hug.

“Oh my god! Where the hell are my manners. I’m Mitsuki Bakugou and please call everyone by their first names or things are going to get very confusing. Alright people, it’s time for roll call!” She clapped her hands together twice to get everyone’s attention, beginning the long task of introducing everyone in the family.

His Grandpa was the first to respond as he slowly got up from his chair. “Hatsu Bakugou. I’m Masaru’s father.” He gave Todoroki a pat on the arm in greeting. “I have to admit I didn’t know what to expect when I heard Katsuki was bringing someone. You seem like a level headed young man.” The blond let out a scoff when he said that making the old man smile. “Or maybe not.”

“Why the hell does that matter?” There was a lack of force behind his words that came with talking to his Grandpa. He was one of the only people he actually respected around this place.

“Because you need someone that is able to keep up with you. Now where is my hug from my only grandchild.” He held his arms open and Katsuki rolled his eyes but obliged. He leaned in and even gently hugged back as Todoroki watched with the expression of someone trying to solve a 500 piece puzzle. He didn’t have a lot of time to work out whatever he was thinking before more of Katsuki’s family began to introduce themselves.

“I’m Mitsuki’s oldest sister, Akasuki Nakano and this is my husband Taiki!” She gestured to his uncle beside her who was writing down the measurements he just took of Todoroki. “Our kids are Riku, Mai, Airi, and Satomi. Satomi is looking after the children right now...wherever they have run off to.”

“And this is my wife, Jin.” Riku wrapped an arm around Jin who smiled up at him and then to Todoroki. “We have a two year old daughter named Yuki.”

“Mineko Suzuki. I’m also one of Mitsuki’s sisters.” His aunt held out her hand to Todoroki and when he took it she pulled him closer to say, “My job offer from before still stands.”

“I’ll...keep that in mind.” He said and Aunt Mineko nodded, pleased with that response, and let him go.

“I’m their only brother, Naoko Suzuki.” His uncle went to rustle Aunt Mineko’s hair but she stomped on his foot with her heel before he could. He let out a pained noise while she tucked a strand of her long blonde hair behind her ear.

“I’m Rin! Let me know if you ever need help with names, I know it’s all a lot to take in. At Naoko and I’s wedding I actually kept a cheat sheet under the table.” She smiled at him as her husband tried to regain his composure. “Oh, I can’t wait for you to meet our twins, Chiho and Daiki.”

Katsuki shot Todoroki a look hoping that he had remembered his warning about the twins and saw recognition in the boy’s eyes. Good, those two nine year olds were devious and it was only made worse by their quirk. When they held hands the chemical reaction would cause a fog around them they would use as cover to create general chaos.

“I’m the youngest of Mitsuki’s siblings. My name is Hisa Suzuki and I have a son named Masato.” Aunt Hisa was the most mild mannered of his aunts, but that didn’t mean much when the rest were basically human hurricanes.

As his family spoke Todoroki listened to them with more focus than Katsuki had seen him use in class and he realized he was actually trying to remember all their names. “It’s nice to meet you all. I’m Shouto Todoroki-”

“Ohhh, can we call you Shouto!?” Airi asked much too enthusiastically for Katsuki’s liking.

“No you can’t, he’s Todoroki to all you assholes!” He stepped in before the other boy could even respond. Especially since he looked like he was actually about to agree .

Everyone was silent for all of two seconds before Mai piped up and said, “So, Shouto, what was that again about an older brother?”

Katsuki slapped a hand to his own forehead and let out a frustrated groan, then placed his other hand on the taller boy’s back to forcibly guide him out of the room. “We’re fucking leaving!”

“Where are we going?” Todoroki asked him quietly.

“Outside. Or, fuck, I dunno, somewhere that’s not here .” He hissed out.

“Ok, well, dinner should be ready soon so don’t take too long.” His dad replied calmly, used to him acting like this. For a moment he had a flashback to when he threatened to run away as a child and his father said nearly the same thing as Katsuki filled a bag with legos to prepare for his ‘journey’. Before he could get them both out of the room Aunt Hisa stopped them.

“You should introduce him to the kids.” She suggested. “Masato has been waiting for you to show up. He was so excited in the car it was all he could talk about. He’s been working on his quirk and wants you to see.”

Todoroki shot Katsuki a perplexed look, probably confused by the idea that any child would actually be thrilled to see him. After what they went through with the extra course to get their preliminary licenses Katsuki couldn't blame him. Masato wasn’t just any five year old though, he was a future badass in training. Katsuki felt Todoroki shift and he suddenly became very aware he still had his hand on his lower back. He cursed internally and quickly removed it as though the soft fabric under his hand had burned him.

“Where are the monsters?” He asked and she smiled at his question.

“They’re in the backyard with Satomi.”

Katsuki made a grunt of acknowledgement and started to walk off, gesturing with a wave of his hand for Todoroki to follow him. They walked through the halls in silence and he could feel the other boy’s eyes boring into his back. Something about Todoroki’s gaze always left him feeling nervous and he absolutely hated how it got to him this way.

“What is it?” He snapped when he was unable to take the stare any longer.

“I thought you hated kids.”

“I do.” Katsuki opened the large door to the backyard and gave Todoroki a sour look when their ears were assaulted by the sound of screaming children. “But I wouldn’t consider these things kids.”

“Katsuki!” A small voice cried out and a weight crashed into his side. He looked down and saw Masato clinging to his leg, smiling up at him.

“Hey, brat.” He ruffled the kid’s fluffy red hair, kicking the door closed behind him. He would never admit it out loud but he did have a soft spot for the little amber eyed boy that considered himself to be Ground Zero’s biggest fan.

“I have so much to tell you! I came up with so many ideas for my hero name and costume! I’ve also been-” The child suddenly went silent and his smile morphed to an expression of shock when he set his gaze on the boy behind Katsuki, who was watching them curiously. Panic flashed through Todoroki’s eyes momentarily as though he thought he had messed up in some way.

“Hello.” The greeting was awkward, but Masato’s eyes widened when he addressed him. Katsuki sighed, knowing exactly what was about to happen.

“You’re the ice guy! The fire guy! I’ve watched your fight with Katsuki like a billion times!” The kid gasped and Katsuki could almost see the light bulb turn on above his head when he looked at him. “Did you bring him here to fight him?”

“Not this time, kid.” If that were the case everything would be a lot simpler for him.

Todoroki raised an eyebrow at that and looked right at him as he said, “I’m Katsuki’s boyfriend.”

He felt an unknown and unwelcome emotion flash through him, a tightening in his chest he felt every time Todoroki said shit like that. He felt his palms begin to sweat despite the fact he was out in the winter weather with no jacket. All it did was make him feel frustrated, nearly setting off some kind of fight or flight instinct in him. There was no way he would ever get used to it, this week was going to be hell.

“Oh...so you are going to fight crime together!” The little boy finally let go of his leg and jumped in place absolutely delighted by the idea. “That’s the coolest team up ever!”

“You think so?” Todoroki’s tone and face were serious as though he was having a conversation with an adult rather than a small child. He knelt down to Masato’s level when the kid approached him.

“Heck yes! You could freeze the villains right in place and BOOM! Katsuki could make them explode!”

“That’s a pretty good strategy.”

“Yeah, I know. I just came up with it.”

“Do you have any more ideas?”

Masato beamed, obviously overjoyed by someone taking interest in what he has to say. “I’ll come up with a bunch more, don’t worry!”

“Let me know when you do.” Todoroki stood up again dusting the snow off of his pants.

“Of course.” The kid nodded as if he had been given an extremely important task. He then lightly tugged on Todoroki’s sleeve. “Come on, I want to show you to my cousins.”

“Oh...Alright.”

Masato reached out for Todoroki’s left hand touching it tentatively at first, like he was checking it’s temperature, before taking it to pull him away to go meet the other kids. Katsuki walked alongside them and finally took in the scene in front of him. Satomi was doing her best to pull a sled along the ground that Yuki was sitting on. The minuscule amount of snow on the ground made this a difficult task and the toddler giggled every time the sled moved the slightest. Meanwhile, the twins were working on creating some kind of snow pile. Daiki was focused on their little project but Chiho was easily distracted, picking up some snow and shoving it into Satomi’s jacket. The teen yelled from the sudden cold and fell to the ground making Yuki laugh even harder. As she turned to glare at Chiho her choppy short hair turned red with anger. Satomi’s quirk was her hair essentially being a mood ring, changing colors depending on her emotion.

“Guys! Katsuki brought Shouto Tododoki!” Masato announced, dragging said person behind him with alarming strength for a five year old. Katsuki let out a short but loud laugh at his mispronunciation of his name.

“You know my name?” He didn’t seem to care about Masato’s mistake and gave Katsuki a curious look.

“Yeah, I like you.” Was Masato’s simple reply.

“He watches recordings of the sports festivals constantly. He probably knows the names of half the people in our class. Don’t flatter yourself.”

“But Tododoki is one of my favorites!” Katsuki looked to the child in shock and then to Todoroki. He felt a horrible surge of annoyance and briefly considered fighting him like Masato had suggested.

“Calm down, Katsuki. You know you’re his favorite hero, you don’t have to be jealous of your own boyfriend.” Satomi said deadpan as she stopped Yuki from falling off the sled. The girl was dressed like some kind of extra from a My Chemical Romance video and Katsuki nearly cringed at her shakely applied eyeliner. This was all a new development but everyone had to go through some kind of phase at age 13. He knows he did.

“I’m not fucking jealous!” He hissed at her quietly so the kids wouldn’t hear. It wasn’t that he was worried about the kids hearing curse words, it was that the twins were snitches.

Satomi rolled her eyes looking unconvinced. “Sure.”

Masato let go of the hand he was holding and Todoroki watched as the little boy made his way over to Katsuki to hold his hand instead. “Yeah, you’re going to be the best hero. That’s why I’m going to be your sidekick.”

“Damn right.”

“Oh! We can play heroes and villains! Daiki! Chiho! Do you want to play the villains again?” Masato let go of Kastuki’s hand and ran over to the twins excitedly.

“Hey, you already know your mom said you can’t play that until you get your quirk more under control.” Satomi reprimanded without much force. She could probably care less what the kids did at this point.

“I am getting better, though.” The 5 year old pouted, disappointed by his idea being rejected.

“Aw come on! Katsuki’s here so it should be fine!” Chiho complained.

“Focus, Chiho! We have to get this hill done before it gets dark out. We can play heroes and villains tomorrow.” Daiki chided while he added another small snowball to their creation.

“What’s this hill for?” Todoroki asked the two and Katsuki slapped a hand to his forehead. Apparently, his warnings about the twins were going ignored.

“Sledding. Duh.” Chiho said as though it was obvious and then started attempting to get more snow from the ground.

“I could help you out with that if you want.” Todoroki suggested and Masato gasped in excitement knowing exactly what was about to happen.

Chiho gave him an unconvinced look but Daiki readily agreed. “Sure, grab all the snow you can.”

“Back up.” Todoroki instructed the twins but they didn’t actually move until he held up his right hand which was already covered in frost. Wicked grins grew on their faces and the two kids gave him the room he needed. The children all watched Todoroki kneel down and place his hand on the small mound of snow. Ice shot out from the point of contact creating a large ice ramp reminding Katsuki of the one he made during ‘the kidnapping incident’. Between this and his mother bringing it up earlier Katsuki was done with thinking about that moment.

Masato let out a loud squeal and was the first to run over to admire Todoroki’s work. In his haste the little boy slipped and fell in the snow but quickly sprung back up again to touch the ice to make sure it was real. The twins went absolutely wild, grabbing their sleds and rushing to go play. Even Satomi looked at Todoroki impressed before picking Yuki up and heading over to the ramp to make sure the little demons didn’t hurt themselves.

“If the license training taught me anything it’s that kids love sliding on ice.” Todoroki said as he rejoined Katsuki and watched the twins race down the ice on their sleds. He was close enough that he could feel the heat radiating off of Todoroki’s side meaning he must have activated his quirk to keep warm.

He resisted the momentary urge to step closer and instead shot him an annoyed sideways look, “I thought I told you to be careful around the twins.”

“They just wanted to sled. That seems harmless.”

“Harmless my ass! Now they know they can get you to do shit for them. You just made this week that much worse for yourself.”

Todoroki was silent for a moment before turning to him with an expression Katsuki couldn’t quite understand.“Are you...worried about me?”

“What? No! I’m just worried about my own sanity.” Who was he kidding? His sanity was gone the moment they got here. Especially now that he couldn’t get that face Todoroki made out of his head.

Todoroki looked like he wanted to respond but didn’t have the chance to. Masato ran over to Todoroki basically vibrating in happiness and tugged on his sleeve to get his attention.

“That was awesome! Can you use ice and fire at the same time?” He asked enthusiastically, still holding on to Todoroki’s sweater sleeve.

“I can but it slows me down. I have to stay still since it takes concentration.”

“You could just lay down and destroy everyone with ice and fire!”

“Hmm, I guess I could, but wouldn’t that leave me open to be attacked?”

“Oh…yeah you’re right. Maybe just drink an energy drink so you don’t get tired and can move fast.”

“I haven’t thought of that.” Todoroki actually looked like he was mulling the idea over.

The conversation continued on with Masato babbling on with questions and suggestions while Todoroki replied to them all seriously. The little boy seemed perfectly content to spend his time chattering away instead of playing like the rest of his cousins. He hasn’t realized he was watching this interaction so closely until the twins pulled his attention away.

“Katsuki! Launch us down the hill!” Daiki shouted to him from the top of the ice. He debated for a moment if he should give into the children's demands. He did want to see how fast he could get one of those sleds to go…

“Fine. Give me a second to warm up my hands.” He rubbed his hands together and started to warm them with his breath. Todoroki looked at him with a tilt to his head.

“What happened to not doing what the twins tell you?” He pointed out. Masato stared in wonder as he conjured fire in his left hand and held it out to Katsuki. He looked at the hand suspiciously but accepted the offer and warmed his hands over the fire.

“They already know what they are going to get out of me. You’re a shiny new toy to them and they will test your limits.”

“I can handle two kids.”

“They ain’t just any kids. They’re worse than me when I was young.” Katsuki didn’t bother waiting for a response before turning on his heels to go climb up the ice ramp. The twins cheered when he joined them and excitedly climbed onto the same sled. Katsuki took a quick glance at Todoroki and saw that he was watching him, ignoring Masato who was hanging off his arm asking to see the fire again.

“Alright, gremlins. Just don’t tell your parents about this.” The two looked at him and smiled as they mimed locking their lips sealed at the same time.

“We won’t say anything!” Chiho confirmed and Katsuki nodded.

“Hey, Linkin Park! Cover the small one’s ears!” Satomi rolled her eyes at the nickname but did as she was told when Katsuki placed his hands on the back of the sled.

“Hold on tight.” The kids cheered and gripped the sides of the sled and Katsuki started running while pushing them. Once they got to the beginning of the slope he sent out a controlled burst from his palms effectively shooting the twins across the ice at what had to be close to 70 miles an hour. The people below watched with mild horror when at the end of the hill the sled hit the solid ground sending the kids tumbling into the air. Katsuki almost raced down the ice himself to check on them but soon enough the kids were laughing as they laid in the wet grass staving off his momentary panic.

“Again!” Chiho giggled. “We have to do that again! That was totally awesome!”

“Can we do it again?!” Daiki asked, hopeful.

“...Fine, but only one more time.”

One more time easily turned into three more with Todoroki extending the ice path on the ground so the twins’ sled had time to slow down. Eventually, Aunt Akasuki popped her head out to tell them that dinner was ready and for the kids to come inside. The twins complained loudly and Satomi ignored them as she pulled Chiho away by the jacket while carrying Yuki with the other arm. Daiki followed close behind since one of the main weaknesses the twins had was they were inseparable. Katsuki slid down the ice, since it was the easiest way to get down, and ignored a hand offered to him by Todoroki when he made it to the bottom. Todoroki didn’t seem surprised by his refusal of help.

“I should take care of this before we go inside.” He said looking at the hill behind Katsuki.

“I got it covered.” After a day like today he was pent up and itching to take it out on something so this provided the perfect opportunity. He cracked his knuckles ready to make something blow up but as he approached the ice ramp a large explosion came off of it right in front of him.

A shrill laugh came from behind him and he turned around to see a proud looking Masato. He was pointing at the ramp with his jacket off and All Might shirt pulled up to expose a red button where his belly button should be. The little boy pressed the button again and another explosion went off behind Katsuki where he was pointing, knocking away more chunks of ice and the five year old looked to him for approval. Todoroki stared at the him in shock and Katsuki smirked, enjoying the look on his face.

“The kid has a remote detonation quirk.” His smile turned to one more feral when he looked back to Masato. “Alright, brat, let’s fuck this shit up!”

“Yeah! Tododoki make more ice!”

Masato saying his new nickname snapped Todoroki out of whatever state he was in and he complied with a wave of his hand. Multiple ice towers shot out of the ground creating more targets for the two of them to demolish. Masato let out an excited cheer at the show of Todoroki’s quirk that turned into a battle cry when he and Katsuki began to set off explosions all over the backyard. His remote detonation quirk worked by the little boy pressing the button on his stomach, but he hadn’t learned how to control where the distant explosions would occur until recently. By pointing out where he wanted them to go he found it easier to will the explosions where he needed it. The only weakness the boy had, besides that, was he had to have a full stomach for his quirk to work and after using it excessively he’d be left extremely hungry. Aunt Hisa usually carried around a box of cheerios for him because of this and Masato always called the snack his ‘bomb energy fuel’.

Masato’s quirk had manifested itself only a year and a half ago and the child had been overjoyed to have a quirk so similar to his favorite cousin’s. Katsuki, however, had felt a bit more trepidacious. It wasn’t that he felt threatened by someone else with a powerful quirk in the family, it was surprisingly the opposite. He didn’t want Masato to go through the same things he had because, as much as he hated to admit, it he did care about the kid. With Masato following him around like a duckling at every family event since he learned to walk Katsuki hadn’t had much of a choice in that matter. The thing about having a huge family was that he had a lot of people he could disappoint. For years Katsuki has had to live with the built up expectations of them all and the pressure to live up to that. That last thing he wanted was for the child to feel that same kind of overwhelming pressure as he grew up. If that meant personally taking Masato under his wing then so be it.

He was pulled from his thoughts when he saw his explosions were not coming out as large as he would like them to be. Between his lack of jacket and the fact that the temperature was steadily dropping as it got darker it was becoming harder for him to maintain his body temperature. His eyes fell on Todoroki, who was still watching them like he just had some kind of epiphany. Hyped up on adrenaline he didn’t even think before what he said next.

“Tod- Shouto!” God, it was going to be hard for him to get used to that. Todoroki almost looked startled hearing his name come from him. Which wasn’t surprising to him considering Katsuki’s usual preference for insulting nicknames. “Do that shit with your quirk again.”

"If you're getting too cold you should probably head inside." He commented as Katsuki approached him.

“Fuck you, I could do this all damn night.” A cold gust of wind came through just as he said this causing Katsuki to shiver involuntarily and Todoroki gave him an unconvinced look. He opened his mouth to ask him what the hell that look was for when something unexpected happened.

Todoroki wrapped his arms around his shoulders and pulled him into a hug.

It was very warm due to his quirk, but not uncomfortably so. To his own horror he found himself actually wanting to sink further into it and Katsuki’s arms fell around Todoroki’s waist of their own accord. He was also made very aware of the cologne the other boy was wearing that he’d somehow missed while they were in the car together. The scent was warm and pleasant, somewhere between spicy and smoky but faint enough that Katsuki found himself fighting the impulse to bury his nose into the fabric of Todoroki's turtleneck to get a better smell. For a moment he was speechless, left with only the feeling of Todoroki’s chest as he breathed and the sounds of Masato laughing as he continued to blow things up behind him.

“What the hell do you think you are doing?” Katsuki finally managed to say. He realized he had some of Todoroki’s sweater gripped tightly in his fist and he quickly let go.

“Your family is watching from the windows,” the taller boy whispered into his ear, the sensation of warm air across his skin making the hair at the nape of Katsuki's neck rise and a shudder to wrack his body. Frowning intensely Katsuki blamed the shiver on the cold, something he and Todoroki must've agreed on as the other boy's left side heated up further. “I...thought this might be convincing for them.”

Sure enough, when he looked towards the windows he saw at least half of his family watching them with different expressions of surprise and glee. Riku even went as far as shooting him a thumbs up with a cheesy grin once he saw he was looking. He could feel heat rise up to his face.

“What are you assholes looking at?!” He shouted loudly so those idiots could hear him but it just made them laugh and caused Todoroki to wince since it was right in his ear. The hug quickly turned into Todoroki holding Katsuki back from grabbing a chunk of ice to throw through a window. The only thing that succeeded in doing was making his older cousins laugh even harder. His Aunt Hisa shot him an apologetic look and started to shoo people away to give them ‘privacy’. Todoroki let go of him, now that he wasn’t about to break things, and Katsuki found himself feeling even colder than he had been before at the loss of contact. They both stood there for a moment, staring at each other, not knowing what to say until Katsuki couldn’t take it anymore.

“Can you just- would you quit staring all the time?” It sounded weak, lacking the usual force behind his words which was strange to him. Still, Todoroki shifted his gaze as requested and something behind Katsuki caught his attention.

“Is Masato alright?” His voice was tinged with worry and Katsuki turned around so quickly he almost slipped on the icy ground. Masato was still setting off explosions but between each one he was tightly gripping his stomach.

“Shit!” He cursed under his breath without hesitating to run to the kid and he could hear Todoroki following close behind. It was obvious the amount he used his quirk was getting to him but the little boy continued to act like nothing was wrong since he was still having fun. “Come on, brat, playtime’s over. You gotta eat.”

Masato immediately started to whine. “But I want to keep playing! I’m not hungry!”

“Bullshit.” There was no way he was going to just stand there and argue with a kid. Katsuki easily threw the small child over his shoulder in a fireman’s carry and ignored Masato’s protests as he started carrying him to the house. “You’re gonna overdo it.”

“Tododoki! Help me!” The kid wiggled to try to get out of his grasp and reached for Todoroki who was walking beside them.

“You should listen to your cousin.” At that Masato was about to start complaining again but Todoroki cut him off. “You want to be strong like him, right? Take his advice.”

Katsuki wanted to say something but he couldn’t find the words, it was as though his mind had gone offline. He wasn’t sure what to make of what Todoroki had just said and he found himself wishing he actually paid more attention to what was said in the other boy’s conversations with Masato. It felt strange to be inadvertently complemented by Todoroki but he couldn’t help feeling oddly satisfied by it.

“I guess that’s true…” Masato reluctantly agreed and calmed down enough that, once inside, Katsuki was able to put the kid down without the threat of him trying to make a run for it.

“Of course it’s true, now listen to me and go fucking eat something already!” Masato was once again unfazed by the cursing and nodded to him with a determined look in his eyes like he was just given a mission. The little boy then ran off to the dining room where everyone must have already started to eat.

Todoroki watched in thought as the boy ran off and there was a moment of silence before he said, “The way he talks about heroes...doesn’t he remind you of Izuku?”

Katsuki saw red.

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

The dining room, like the rest of the house, was decorated for Christmas in a simple and tasteful manner. A soft glow came from the strings of garland tangled with lights around the room as well as from the lit candles on the table. Poinsettia flowers were also strategically placed about, along with a few small knick knacks here and there. If it weren’t for the people the place would actually have a very calming atmosphere. In the middle of the room was large mahogany table long enough to accommodate whole the family and everyone was already seated at it, eating and chatting away. Katsuki’s older cousins started wildly gesturing for the two of them to sit in the seats they saved near them when he entered the room with Todoroki. He guessed that must be his punishment for being the last to the table.

Luckily, everyone seemed already too engrossed in their own conversations to pay much attention to their arrival. Except for his mother, of course, who had more than enough time on her hands to chastise him for taking so long while somehow doting on Todoroki at the same time. Others followed suit, turning their attention to the dual haired boy. It took less than thirty seconds for Todoroki’s plate to be full with the amount Katsuki’s family kept shoving different foods in front of him excitedly telling him to give it a try.

Katsuki noticed his father subtly keep a close eye on Todoroki as he lifted his fork up to try his first bite of the dinner he made. A smile came to his dad’s face as Todoroki’s eyes widened and he involuntarily let out a soft happy noise before going in for a second bite. When the boy actually voiced a compliment about the food Katsuki’s mom nearly swooned as she went on and on about how well mannered he was and how she couldn’t believe her son managed to snag someone like that launching Katsuki into yet another vicious fight with his mother. The twins used that as a distraction to dump any vegetables they had onto Masato’s plate and the kid gleefully ate them up as he shoveled food into his mouth to deal with the result of overusing his quirk.

Things took a turn for the worst when Mai decided to get nosy.

“So, how did you two meet?” The question was a simple one but everyone at the table went silent to listen in. A sudden spike of anxiety shot its way through him since they had never discussed how they were going to respond to questions like that.

“It’s none of your damn business!” Katsuki snapped ready to put an end to the conversation but Todoroki spoke up.

“We met in class. He caught me staring at him and the first thing he ever said to me was ‘What the fuck are you looking at, pretty boy?’ and walked away.”

The response was very matter of fact yet various members of his family cooed as though that was an adorable thing they had ever heard while others made comments about how ‘that sounds just like Katsuki’. The worst part of it was the fact that what Todoroki said was true and for some reason his family thought it was the height of romance, which Katsuki did not understand in the slightest. It was supposed to be an insult damn it.

Todoroki’s honest answer opened the floodgates for everyone to start asking their own questions about his life and their ‘relationship’. Questions were thrown at him left and right about things ranging from how long they have been dating to what his plans after graduation were. Any questions about himself Tororoki answered fairly easily, although he did avoid any questions that got too personal about his homelife or his childhood. Katsuki was taken aback by how much he realized he already knew about his ‘fake boyfriend’. He shocked himself even more when he went as far as to step in and answer his Uncle Naoko that Todoroki’s favorite food was cold soba. Even the boy himself looked surprised but was quick to hide it.

Todoroki dodged the questions about the two of them for the most part by giving short and simple answers. This only served to make his family, especially his older cousins, determined to get even more information out of him. The incessant need to get into his business began grating on Katsuki’s last nerve and he could gradually feel himself start to boil over at the sheer number of questions, even with Todoroki taking the brunt of most of it. As his Aunt Rin asked about how they got together he felt himself finally snap and he slammed his palms down on the table, chair screeching against the hardwood as he sprung to his feet ready to go off on his family about their incessant questioning. He was stopped short, however, by Todoroki throwing him a stern look.

“Katsuki.” All Todoroki had said was his name but anything Katsuki was about to say died in his throat. The annoyance he felt dissipated, replaced by that feeling he had every time Todoroki used his first name. His expression went from one of anger to a look of wide-eyed confusion as he slowly returned to his seat, gaze locked on Todoroki and entirely missing the incredulous looks and dropped jaws around the table. During the interrogation a couple of his family members, such as his Grandpa, Aunt Mineko, and Airi, had given some suspicious looks at Todoroki’s answers but any doubts they had seemed to be officially squashed. His mom looked absolutely floored, yet delighted, and it was easy to tell from her expression that she was ready to fully accept Todoroki into her family.

It was silent as everyone digested what just happened until Riku smirked and made a whipping noise directed at Katsuki. The rage he had felt came back with a vengeance but before he could do anything, like throw his plate at Riku’s throat like a frisbee, frost shot its way across the table effectively freezing Riku’s glass of eggnog to the table. While his cousin looked at him in shock, Todoroki simply took a sip out of his own glass while shooting Riku a glare. His grandfather burst out into a fit of booming laughter at this and it didn’t take long for others to join him.

“I can see why you like him, Creme-suki!” His Grandpa said loudly as his laughter began to subside. The nickname was something Katsuki was used to from him but he felt his heart drop to his stomach as soon as he heard it because Todoroki immediately turned to his grandfather with obvious interest.

“Creme-suki?” There was a hint of a smile on his lips and his Grandpa matched it with his own grin.

“Shut up.” Katsuki gritted out through his teeth, but both of them were unfazed.

“I’m sure by now you’ve noticed by now that my grandson tends to smell like creme brulee. I’ve been calling him that since he was a kid.”

“What was he like when he was young?” His grandfather perked up at the question and looked more than happy to begin telling stories about him as a child.

“Aw come on let’s talk about something more interesting! We can embarrass Katsuki anytime, I want to hear about Shouto’s childhood.” Airi piped up. “You’re Endeavor’s son, right? What’s it like growing up with the number one hero?”

The question was meant to be innocent enough and his cousin was genuinely curious but that didn’t stop the boy next to him from immediately tensing up upon hearing it. Katsuki watched as the small smile on Todoroki’s face quickly disappeared replaced by an almost hauntingly blank expression. Katsuki caught the barest flicker of heterochromatic eyes towards the doorway to the kitchen. Escape route his mind supplied, and if looks could kill the force of his glare would have turned Airi into dust as Todoroki sat there frozen, looking for something to say. His father looked at him in concern and then turned to Katsuki in silent communication knowing something was wrong and wondering if there is something he could do. At Todoroki’s silence Airi looked like she was about to say something else but Masato beat her to it.

“Endeavor sucks!” The little boy declared through a mouthful of food.

“Masato!” Aunt Hisa looked horrified and was quick to scold her son. “You can’t just say things like that, it’s rude!”

“But I’m right!”

“Apologize right now to-”

She, along with the rest of the family, fell silent as a soft laugh rang through the room. The laughter only grew and Katsuki swore he felt his heart stop when he looked to the source. After three years the most he has heard from Todoroki was a light chuckle and the amount he had heard that he could probably count on just one hand. He had never seen the boy quite like this, with his shoulders shaking as he tried to cover his smile with his hand while candlelight danced in his eyes. Katsuki was stunned and it seemed like most of his family was caught under the same spell.

“Yeah.” Todoroki said softly as his laughter died down, his gaze cast downwards at the food in front of him. “He does suck.”

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

For the most part, things went smoothly for the rest of dinner. The topic of Todoroki’s father was left abandoned as soon as Katsuki’s family became completely distracted by fawning over his laugh. His parents still made sure to send Katsuki a concerned look and he knew his mom would end up bringing this up with him later. He wasn’t looking forward to when that happened but knew there would be no escaping it. The rest of the time was spent with Todoroki quietly chatting with his grandfather while Katsuki bickered loudly with his cousins causing Yuki to giggle from her highchair every time he raised his voice. By the end of dinner, the little toddler was fast asleep with her head of wild blonde curls resting against her tray. Her mother, Jin, picked her up taking care to not wake her as she carried Yuki off to bed while Riku watched with a soft smile on his face. Masato was also fast asleep curled into Aunt Hisa’s side and she was trying to figure out a good way to pick him up from this position. She was saved by his Uncle Naoko who was about to lead the sleepy twins off to bed anyway.

Airi turned to Katsuki with a devilish glint in her eyes, “Hey, Kat! Isn’t it past your bedtime, too?”

His eyebrow twitched in annoyance and he threw a dinner roll at her as she laughed. He couldn’t deny though that he actually was pretty tired.

“I wouldn’t mind going to bed if you’re tired.” Todoroki spoke up as though reading his thoughts. “I didn’t get much sleep last night.”

Riku, Mai, and Airi turned to Katsuki with similar mocking shocked and scandalized looks trying to hold back grins. With horror Katsuki realized exactly what they were thinking.

“Not letting him sleep, huh?” Riku teased with an eyebrow wiggle directed at him.

“Guess that turtleneck isn’t just a fashion statement!” Mai commented with a laugh as Todoroki’s eyebrows furrowed a bit in confusion.

“Would you three shut the fuck up already before I make you!” Katsuki threatened with small explosions popping off in his hand for emphasis. This only made them laugh harder since apparently his older cousins feared neither god nor death.

“Quiet down already before you wake up the kids!” Aunt Mineko downed her last sip of wine and stood up gesturing for them to follow her. “Come on, I’ll show you both where you’ll be sleeping this year.”

She threw Katsuki a wink and he raised a suspicious eyebrow in response concerned by what that could mean. She led them away back to the grand staircase in the foyer, rattling on and on about things Katsuki didn’t care enough to listen to. Seriously, why the hell did he need to know about the vegan muffins someone gave her at work for her birthday? She continued talking about her work as though she was trying to paint some glorious picture of it, obviously in an attempt to get Todoroki’s interest in working for her. He didn’t show any care at all though, choosing instead to look around curiously at the Christmas decorations throughout the house with a kind of wonder Katsuki didn’t expect to see from him. The staircase lead them to the second story where the numerous bedrooms in the house were. A floral scent wafted off his Aunt Mineko from her quirk as she lead them down a long hallway. Her quirk allowed her to secrete various essential oils of her choosing from her skin, which she used to her advantage to get people to enjoy her presence. Finally she stopped in front of a particular door and turned to them.

“And here it is! I made sure to save one of the larger bedrooms for the two of you. Has its own bathroom and everything. I wanted to impress after all, since this is Shouto’s first Christmas with us.” She said tossing them a smile while she opened the door.

“Wait.” Katsuki said confused as she pushed them into the room. He chose to shove down any feelings about the implication that Todoroki would be spending more Christmases with his family and instead focused on a more immediate problem. “What the hell do you mean by the two of us?”

“Oh yeah, I convinced Mitsuki to let you room together. You’re welcome for that, by the way.” She explained with an amused smile. The shock on Katsuki’s face could have been suspicious but luckily she seemed to take it as just surprise that she could actually get his mother to change her mind. “Tomorrow we’re going to pick out this year’s family christmas tree and you know how the fights about that can be so make sure to get your beauty rest in!”

With that she closed the door leaving the two of them awkwardly standing alone together. The room was large as promised and was just as nice as the rest of this aunt’s home, decorated in various cream and light blue tones with golden touches all around, giving off an air of comfort and luxury. Aunt Mineko must not have been lying about wanting to impress Todoroki since this had to be one of the nicest guest rooms here. The most prominent thing that stood out, of course, was the large canopy bed in the center of the room.

The singular bed.

God he was so fucked.

If Todoroki was fazed at all by the situation he didn’t show it as he walked past him to root through their bags in search of his. At some point one of his family members must have carried the bags up for them since the last time he had seen them he had panickedly thrown them in the foyer. Todoroki made a small satisfied noise and pulled his bag out of the pile.

When he turned around he must have seen something in Katsuki’s expression because he asked, “What’s wrong?”

“What’s-” Katsuki almost repeated the question back but cut himself off with an aggravated groan hardly able to believe Todoroki couldn’t see the problem at hand. “I’m not sleeping on the fucking floor!”

Todoroki arched a stupidly perfect eyebrow at him as he walked over to the bed and threw his bag onto the side he had chosen for himself. “I never said you had to.”

“What are you saying? We should share the damn thing?!”

“Yes.” He replied simply as he began to unpack his bag and Katsuki was stunned to silence enough for him to continue. “The bed is big enough and your family would probably find it suspicious if I asked for another room.”

He hated when he was right. Instead of saying anything he gave Todoroki a skeptical look before getting to work unpacking his things as well. They fell into a strangely comfortable silence, both thoroughly socially drained from the chaotic evening. Katsuki was about to put away his clothes in a drawer when he caught sight of something on top of the dresser. It was a pair of deep blue silk pajamas decorated with a pattern of little white snowflakes and just by lightly running his fingers over it he could feel it was expensive. Placed on top was a small note written on the back of one of Aunt Mineko’s business cards that read ‘For Katsuki’s Mystery Man!’. His aunt really was pulling out all the stops trying to get Todoroki to join her modeling agency. Katsuki crushed the note and shoved it in his pocket before picking up the pajamas and turning around to throw them right at the taller boy.

They hit him square in the face yet somehow he still managed to not seem surprised at all as he pulled them off to inspect. “What is this?”

“My Aunt Mineko left them for you.”

Todoroki stared at them perplexed for a moment and then looked up at him. “How did she know my size?”

“The devil works fast but she works faster.” He said while he finished unpacking. “She probably got your measurements after my Uncle Taiki took them.”

Todoroki still looked a bit puzzled but didn’t say anything else while he put the silk pajamas away with the rest of his clothes.

The two of them took turns using the bathroom to get ready for the night. Normally, even in the winter, Katsuki would sleep in his boxers and a tank top but in this situation thought it would be best if he changed into some sweatpants as well. Todoroki wore a simple white t-shirt and grey plaid pajama pants and stifled a yawn as he climbed into bed to get settled. The sight made Katsuki fight back a yawn of his own, and the fact that it irritated him must have been obvious since he caught a small smirk from the other boy in his periphery. When he looked to level a glare at Todoroki he was caught almost off guard by how soft the other looked, face blank as always but strangely unguarded with his dual toned hair splayed across the pillow and the barest circles of exhaustion tinting the skin under his eyes. He realized he'd been standing there for probably too long when Todoroki blinked, freeing him from the strange train of thought. Clearing his throat, Katsuki plugged in his phone to charge and tucked it beneath his pillow before moving to get in bed himself

“If you touch me I'm blowing your fucking hands off.” He warned as he begrudgingly got under the covers.

“Noted.” Once again Todoroki was unperturbed by his threats and reached over to the lamp next to him to switch it off.

In the darkness, laying with his back to Todoroki, Katsuki thought for sure that he would be tense and unable to sleep but he found that wasn’t the case. Strangely, even though he was hyperaware of his presence, Todoroki’s steady and even breathing eased him in a way that he didn’t think was possible. He felt himself relax and for a moment the thought he would actually be able to fall asleep relatively quickly. At least that was until Todoroki broke the silence.

“Goodnight, Creme-suki.”

Without hesitation Katsuki whipped around and smacked Todoroki with his pillow right in the face. He considered smothering him but a muffled chuckle came from under the pillow and Katsuki felt his heart constrict at the sound.

Flopping aggressively onto his side, heart still racing, Katsuki began to doubt he was going to survive the night - let alone the week.

Chapter Text

When Katsuki first woke it was in a comfortable foggy haze where he didn’t even bother opening his eyes, instead choosing to stretch and bury his face deeper into his warm pillow with a content sigh. He wasn’t usually one to sleep in since he preferred to get an early start to his day, and because of his tendency to be unable to go back to sleep once he woke up in the slightest. This time, however, he was so relaxed that he was able to sink back into the best sleep he’d had in a long time.  

The second time he woke up his brain registered that his pillow was breathing.

Katsuki’s eyes snapped open and, to his horror, he realized at some point during the night he must have draped himself over the other boy. He was half on top of Todoroki with an arm wrapped around his torso and head carefully tucked under his chin. For a moment, Katsuki was frozen on the spot as Todoroki continued to let out the softest of small snores while the early dawn light filtered in through the windows. Then he suddenly sprang into action, his mind catching up to his body, and he launched himself away from Todoroki as fast as possible resulting in him hitting his head on one of the bed banisters and falling ungracefully from the bed.

Fuck! ” He held his head in his hands for a moment waiting for the pain to pass but looked up with a start when he heard a rustling in the bedsheets. Katsuki carefully peered over the edge of the bed but saw that, luckily, Todoroki was still asleep and had just buried himself deeper into the blankets. He let out a breath he didn’t even know he was holding, relieved the dual haired boy would be none the wiser to what just happened.

There was a beat of silence as he stared stunned at the other boy splayed out in the pillows, light filtering in through the sheer curtains of the window making Shouto look like he came straight out of some kind of storybook scene. When Katsuki realized he had been staring at the boy’s plush parted lips for far too long he shook his head, ignoring the pain that the action sparked. He jumped to his feet and retreated to the bathroom slamming the door behind him far too loudly in his escape. He leaned against it for a moment taking a deep breath and letting his head lightly hit the door behind him as he calmed down. Catching his reflection in the mirror, he scowled when he saw his cheeks were beet red. He shouldn’t be acting like this, running away like some kind of coward because of Shouto Todoroki of all people.

Instead of trying to look into what could have possibly gotten him this worked up, Katsuki decided to turn on the shower and attempt to regain his usual morning routine while he pushed the thought of his classmate sleeping just on the other side of the door out of his head. Stepping into the shower he felt himself relax under the warm water and he let out a sigh of relief at the feeling as he massaged the back of his neck, easing some of the tension from his shoulders. Like everywhere else in the house, the bathroom was pristine, his aunt spared no expense and Katsuki decided to give himself time to enjoy the excellent water pressure from the showerhead.

It didn’t take very long for his thoughts to stray. Really besides the awkward way he woke up he had to admit to himself that it had been a long while since he last slept that well. Normally Katsuki slept rather restlessly and was no stranger to waking up in the midst of a nightmare. It hadn’t always been that way and looking back he could probably pinpoint the beginning as when he was caught by that damn sludge monster. The night after that incident he had woken up gasping for air, resisting the urge to scratch at his neck when he had the phantom feeling of that sludge still on his skin. Since then the nightmare became a recurring phenomenon but at least at the time it had been at a manageable level where he could just shake it off. The real problem started after the Kamino Ward incident.

In the time after his rescue, when he was homebound, sleep was nearly impossible for Katsuki. He couldn’t shake the feeling of being unsafe, leading him to be on near constant alert. That kind of fight or flight feeling wouldn’t shut off and at night instead of sleeping Katsuki would just become increasingly more frustrated with himself as he remained wide awake and staring at his door. Surprisingly, some relief came in the form of moving into the dorms. While everyone excitedly greeted each other and was ready to show off their rooms his eyelids started to become heavy from the secure feeling of being around the other heroes in training. While this was a level of trust in them he vowed to never admit out loud, he was absolutely sure his close friends knew by now. At the time he’d bluntly said he would rather go the fuck to bed then participate in whatever dumb shit they were doing and went to his room. He had fallen asleep as soon as his head hit the pillow, at last feeling some security in the form of his classmates chatting away in the hall about their decorating contest. Even to this day he found himself choosing to go to bed early in the evening so the sounds of the others in the dorms could lull him to sleep.

Katsuki winced when while shampooing his hair his fingers found a small bump on his head, the memories of how he hit his head this morning pulling him back to reality. He cursed quietly, annoyed at himself for even going down that train of thought. He decided to chalk up how well rested he was to the fact that there was another human being present and not at all that said human being was Todoroki.

Realizing how long he had been in the shower, Katsuki made quick work of the rest and stepped out to towel dry his hair back to its natural fluffy state. He made a face when he caught a whiff of the strong floral smell from the shampoo his aunt left in the bathroom for him to use. He quickly made a mental note to remember to grab his usual soap from his bag the next time.

Wrapping the towel around his waist, he opened the bathroom and walked out while running a hand through his hair in an attempt to tame it a bit. He only looked up when he heard a soft intake of breath as he was walking to the dresser. Having thought that Todoroki was still asleep he hadn’t expected to see the boy sitting upright in bed. Katsuki glanced from his hair which was a tangled mess of red and white bedhead, to his mismatched eyes - wide and boring a hole through Katsuki’s chest. He could feel heat crawl up his neck and subconsciously puffed out his chest as he prepared his best glare.

“What are you looking at?” The moment Katsuki spoke, Todoroki's gaze immediately snapped to his eyes before quickly looking away. A dusting of pink came to his cheeks, as well as the tips of his ears, which in combination with Todoroki’s disheveled appearance made Katsuki’s heart feel like it was in his throat.

“Ah, sorry- I didn’t...I just- I was zoning out and you got in my way.”

“Whatever.” Katsuki cut him off by throwing the towel that had been around his waist at the other boy’s face before he turned around to get dressed. He did feel some satisfaction when he heard a muffled noise of surprise come from Todoroki’s direction. He could tell that the boy was lying but it didn't seem worth it to waste time getting the truth out of him so he chose to ignore it.

As soon as he had pulled up his boxers he felt the towel hit him square in the back with a wet whack and oddly he felt himself smile a bit as he let out a soft snort. He stepped into his faded jeans, ones that he somehow still had left over from interning with Best Jeanist, and turned around to face Todoroki again as he buttoned them. Todoroki’s eyes followed the movement of his hands before snapping right back to Katsuki’s own red eyes.

“I’m gonna-” Todoroki swallowed thickly before he suddenly shuffled off of the bed and stood on his feet. “I should get in the shower now.”

He said this quickly, his stare racking over Katsuki one last time, before briskly walking past him into the bathroom. He watched him go, enjoying seeing the normally composed boy trip over his words like this. Even if he had no idea why that was the case.

“Knock yourself out.” Todoroki didn’t reply to his quip and just shut the door behind him, leaving Katsuki shirtless and confused in the middle of the room. He took one last confused look at the bathroom door before shrugging and then looking for something warm to wear. He settled on a soft knit sweater that was black at the shoulders and faded to grey at the bottom. He took a look in the mirror and deemed it good enough to please his fashion forward family members then headed out of his - well his and Todoroki’s - room.

As soon as he walked downstairs he was greeted by chaos in the form of the twins running past him holding a plate with a mountain of bacon on it. They giggled around the bacon that were shoveling into their mouths by the handful and when they passed Katsuki Chiho gave Katsuki a little wave in greeting with her free hand. He gave a single nod and plucked a few slices of bacon from the tray as they went by. Through that, a silent pact was made between them that the price of Katsuki’s discretion was what he took. Not a moment later their father, Naoko, came bounding down the hall after them causing them to make a screech like laugh and run faster like they were little velociraptors. They clasped their hands together and a thick blanket of fog started to pour out, curling around them like a protective barrier, and only their laughs could be heard as they disappeared. Uncle Naoko ran past Katsuki into the mist as though he had done it a thousand times, probably more, in an attempt to wrangle his kids.

Katsuki decided to leave him to it and instead of helping made his way to the kitchen where he knew it would be quieter since only his father and grandfather occupied it. As expected, when Kastuki walked in he found his grandpa whisking away at a bowl of batter while eggs, bacon, sausage, and hashbrowns sizzled away on the stove top. Wordlessly, Katsuki walked over, shoving what was left of his handful of bacon into his mouth, and grabbed a spatula to flip an omelette.

“You’re losing your touch, old man.” Katsuki commented around his mouthful of food. The omelette had been moments away from burning but he caught it in time for it to be a perfect golden brown.

His grandpa let out one of his signature booming laughs before saying, “Come on now. You know I had my eye on it.”

“You sure about that? Those are some pretty fuckin’ thick glasses.”

“You won’t be laughing once your eyesight starts to go too. We Bakugous can’t see shit by 50. Hopefully the fact you have your mom’s eyes will help you.” He jested as put down the bowl he was holding and moved to stand beside his grandson. “Now watch and learn.”

He gripped the handle of two different pans that had omelette and at the same time flipped them both in the air revealing a perfectly cooked side of the egg.

“Just go back to your waffles. I got it from here.” Katsuki mumbled and lightly shoved his grandpa back towards his old waffle iron then got to work cooking the rest of breakfast.

His grandfather gave him a smile and picked up the batter again to begin pouring out the first waffle. His grandfather was known for making the best waffles and there was a silent rule that he was the only one allowed to make the dish at family gatherings since no one else could do it quite like he could. He even would always make sure to use his own cast iron waffle maker that was probably as old as the man himself.

The two worked for a while just chatting about Katsuki’s time at school since he had last seen his grandfather. As the pile of waffles next to the old man grew apparently so did his curiosity as after a small pause he asked, “So what exactly is it about this boy that had you go and quit your celibate life?”

Katsuki nearly choked on his own spit and it took everything for him not to cough as he wheezed out, “ Excuse me?

His Grandpa must have mistaken his response for anger as he smoothly clarified, “Don’t get me wrong, Shouto is fantastic. I like having him around, he’s pretty entertaining, but you were pretty dead set on not wanting- now how did you say it...ah, not wanting someone to ‘slow you down’.”

Katsuki started to feel panic begin to buzz under his skin at such a question knowing that he would have to lie to his grandfather and he anxiously poked at some hashbrowns with his spatula. Coming up with something convincing wasn’t going to be an easy task either. Todoroki was always fucking testing him all the time and it was infuriating . Katsuki pushed himself to his damn limit every single day in attempts to stay ahead of him, but he always found that Todoroki matched his pace. The way that they faced off every sports festival was proof of that. He had to admit though...there was some thrill to the chase. He felt the anxiety ebb away as he realized what he could say to his grandfather.

“You said it yourself...I needed to find someone that can keep up with me. I did.”

His grandpa’s eyes softened as he looked at him and with pure sincerity he said, “And I’m happy you did, Creme-suki.”

Fuck, he felt like such a piece of shit.

All he could do was nod in a jerky fashion as he swallowed down his guilt which was only worsened by the smile his grandfather gave him in return. He turned away quickly and avoided thinking about what his reaction would be when he heard that Katsuki and Todoroki had broken up in a couple weeks. Hopefully his family wasn’t going to grow attached or anything.

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

Katsuki was placing a plate of sausage onto the dining room table when Todoroki finally walked into the room, seeming in a slight daze amongst the hustle and bustle of Katsuki’s energetic family. After dorming with Todoroki for years he knew just how much he was not a morning person, and it was extremely obvious as he stood amidst his family all of whom were naturally early risers. Todoroki was wearing a pair of dark pants and a white collared shirt which he had layered a soft looking deep grey sweater on top of. Katsuki grimaced when he saw part of the collar folded haphazardly under itself and the other boy’s eyes met his with a start when Katsuki walked over, tugging the offending piece of cloth out to smooth it down properly. He couldn’t tell what the look Todoroki was giving him meant and instead focused on the fact that the sweater had felt just as soft as he expected.

“Fucking took you long enough to get down here. Now help me set the table, you have to work for your food.”

Todoroki opened his mouth to respond but Katsuki didn’t give him a chance to before turning on his heel and heading back into the kitchen to grab more trays of food. Mai, having obviously watched all of that, gave him an eyebrow wiggle and he shoved her as he passed, causing her to laugh as Riku’s wife, Jin, helped steady her so she didn’t fall. Yuki, who was in Riku’s arms sucking on a piece of orange, loudly screeched and giggled at the display, dropping her orange slice to happily clap as though to ask for it to happen again.  

In the kitchen his father was busy washing dishes while grandfather attempted to explain his waffle secret to Satomi as he cleaned his waffle iron. Satomi’s hair was purple meaning she was relaxed but when Katsuki nodded to her in a silent good morning it turned green in happiness, even though she tried to act unaffected.

He went to grab some of the trays that were waiting on the counter when he felt a hand on his hip and a warm chest press against his back. An arm reached past him for a stack of plates and Katsuki turned his head almost jerking back on instinct from how close his face was to Todoroki’s. He could feel heat rush right to his face and for once he found himself unable to think of something to say. His eyes momentarily flicked to Todoroki’s lips but they snapped back to his eyes, which were giving him a curious look. His hand moved from Katsuki’s hip to the small of his back as he tilted his head inquisitively and commented, “You smell different today.”

Katsuki spluttered for a moment, feeling the red of his cheeks deepen, before he indignantly replied with, “What do you mean ?”

Todoroki wrinkled his nose a little bit, in a way he had to admit was kind of cute, and said, “You...smell different?”

“And what do I normally fucking smell like?” Todoroki seemed to ponder his question for a moment.

“I’m not sure, not something flowery though,” he finally answered and then after a pause added, “Something...heady, I guess...and you have that burnt sugar smell, of course.”

Katsuki realized his lips were parted in disbelief and he shut his mouth quickly enough for his teeth to clack as he tried to mentally calculate what the fuck that meant. That’s when he realized that the two of them had the attention of everyone in the room. Katsuki’s dad looked flabbergasted and had forgotten to turn off the water in the sink, frozen in surprise as he cleaned the cookware from breakfast. Satomi was attempting to look anywhere but them and had a slight blush to her face. Then there was his grandpa who was currently grinning and gave him a little wink when he saw he had his attention. Katsuki noticed how close he and Todoroki still were and that the other boy had had his hand on his back the entire time. He could feel his palms start to sweat in a panic and felt like he needed to get out of that room now.

“Whatever, shut up,” was all he weakly managed to say before making his escape. He even forgot to take the food trays with him and left Todoroki standing there confused, holding plates in the middle of the kitchen. He could feel his heart pounding in his chest and didn’t understand why the hell he was acting like this. He was no god damn coward, he shouldn’t be running away every time. He leaned against a wall in the hallway and made a frustrated noise, one of his hands gripped tightly in his hair as he tried to figure out where this sudden out-of-control feeling had come from. He almost bolted when he heard footsteps but relaxed when he saw it was only his dad.

“You okay?” He asked and when Katsuki stiffly nodded he moved to stand next to him before saying, “You don’t have to lie, son.”

Katsuki looked up in surprise and tried to hide the panic he felt inside. Had his dad found out about his lie? He tried to think back to what he could have done wrong. Yeah, he and Todoroki didn’t exactly do the best job of pretending to be a couple but did his dad really find out it was a lie that quickly?

“You know, love isn’t a weakness and showing affection isn’t going to make any of us think any less of you.” His dad put a supportive hand on his shoulder and squeezed before letting his arm fall back to his side, knowing Katsuki’s limit with physical contact. “You’re allowed to be close with your boyfriend around all of us. I know that no one in this house is going to judge you. We’re all very happy for you and Shouto.”

Katsuki was absolutely stunned for a moment, he hadn’t expected that at all. His throat felt tight but he swallowed down the feeling and put his normal annoyed face back on. “Fuck off, I don’t need anyone’s goddamn permission for anything.”

His father smiled, “I know. Now how about you come eat some breakfast.”

His dad walked away to presumably go to the dining room but Katsuki stayed in the hall for a bit appreciating the feeling of being alone for a moment. He pushed himself off of the wall and headed the same way as he mulled over what his dad had said. When he entered the dining room he saw pretty much everyone was sitting at the table, including Shouto who seemed to be nodding off making Katsuki’s heart swell at the sight. His mom placed a hand on Todoroki’s shoulder and held a mug of black coffee in front of him. The boy seemed to perk up at this and took it gratefully, saying something to her that Katsuki couldn’t quite hear but it made his mom loudly gush about how sweet he is.

Katsuki knew that the empty chair next to Todoroki must have been saved for him and on his way over he snagged a jar of sugar cubes off of the table. He placed the jar in front of Todoroki, who looked at him in surprise as he plopped down into the chair.

“Destroy your coffee with sugar like you usually do but don’t fucking blame me when you get diabetes.” Was the only explanation he gave as he piled eggs onto his plate. Todoroki gave him a soft smile and no matter how much he wanted to he found he couldn’t look away.

“Thank you.”

“Don’t mention it.”

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

Besides Airi throwing a waffle at Mai’s face with a loud smack, breakfast passed by without incident. Masato, despite only being five years old, somehow managed to eat more than anyone else. The little boy was bouncing with energy and Aunt Hisa seemed to be worried about how that might affect his quirk while they were on their outing. Explosions and flammable Christmas trees didn’t exactly mix but hopefully the amount Aunt Hisa was bundling him up would make it difficult for him to reach his belly button.

A fresh blanket of snow coated the ground outside and the cold weather had everyone gearing up in their jackets and boots in the foyer. Katsuki flailed as his Aunt Akasuki tried to put earmuffs on him as he told the madwoman to lay off. The movement distracted the twins enough so that their mother, Rin, was able to slip gloves onto their hands, which were items the two despised due to their combined quirk. Katsuki finally met his aunt halfway by tugging a black knit beanie on over his unruly hair. Todoroki had simply slipped on his same thin jacket that he arrived in, making Katsuki wonder if that was seriously all he had.

His mom seemed to notice this too since she looked at the piece of clothing and said, “Shouto, is that really your jacket?”

“Um, yes?” He messed with the bottom of his jacket looking confused like he was just asked some trick question.

This got everyone’s attention and for a moment they all stopped what they were doing to look at Todoroki. They stood still for a moment before suddenly all scrambling to get warmer clothing items for him. Katsuki pinched the bridge of his nose and let out a sigh knowing that, since a majority of his family was in the fashion industry, they weren’t going to make this simple. In fact, his Uncle Taiki held his arms out as though to motion for everyone to give him space as he looked Todoroki over with a critical eye.

The man suddenly snapped his fingers and said, “I’ve got it.”

With that, he readjusted his glasses before running out of the room as Todoroki watched absolutely perplexed. Katsuki’s Uncle Taiki was a very eccentric man which is what his Aunt Akasuki always said was the initial thing that drew her towards him when she first started working at his design studio. Aunt Hisa tugged the offending jacket off of Todoroki ignoring his protests that the thin coat would do just fine for him, meanwhile, Aunt Mineko produced a pair of nice black leather gloves that matched the black boots he was already wearing and slipped them onto Todoroki’s hands despite his insistence that there was no need. It didn’t take long for Uncle Taiki to return holding a garment bag slung over his arm. He held up the bag and unzipped it with a flourish causing Aunt Akasuki to excitedly clap when it revealed a long and elegant light grey jacket.

“Oh! That’s just perfect!” Jin gasped and held her hand to her chest. The sentiment seemed to be shared by everyone in the room as they also sang Uncle Taiki’s praises while he took the coat out of the bag. Todoroki didn’t have any choice as Katsuki’s family gathered around him urging him to try on the jacket. He seemed to marvel over the fabric for a moment, running his hands across it before finally putting the garment on.

As one last touch, Katsuki took off his own black scarf and gave Todoroki no warning before he wrapped it around his neck. The taller boy stared at him with almost a look of awe as he tied the scarf and smoothed it down before he stepped back. He had to admit that his family did a good job, Todoroki looked like he had just stepped out of some sort of magazine that was displaying winter fashions.

Todoroki pulled Katsuki out of his daze by saying, “You're going to take that scarf back as soon as you get chilly, aren't you.”

He scowled, “Go fuck yourself.”

This only caused Todoroki to smile and reply with, “You always manage to say the sweetest things, Katsuki.”

A wave of laughter made its way through his family and Katsuki flushed with the reminder that they were there.

“Come on, Kat, your boyfriend looks totally out of your league right now! You have to least change these jeans, they’re so old!” Airi commented and narrowed her eyes at his jeans. “They’re all scuffed and there is a stain- wait is that a blood stain!?”

“Touch my pants and I kill you.” He swatted her hand away when she immediately went to poke at his jeans. “They’re from one of my internships.”

Uncle Taiki hummed before saying, “Yes, I’d recognize Best Jeanist’s work anywhere. Shame you weren’t more careful with them.”

“I had to fight villains in these! What the fuck do you expect?” Katsuki crossed his arms in frustration. “Whatever, let’s just go already. All the good trees are going to be gone at this rate.”

That seemed to kick everyone into high gear as they remembered they had places to be and they shuffled to finish getting everything together to leave. Katsuki didn’t wait for them and he sharply turned around to walk outside with Todoroki not far behind him. The other boy almost seemed to relax once they were out in the cold and he looked over the fresh snow with some kind of look of appreciation on his face.  Katsuki found himself oddly captivated by that. The moment didn’t last long though as his family burst out of the door, yelling at each other about who goes in what car and sits in what seat. It looked like Satomi and Airi were about to get into a physical fight over who got to ride shotgun and Satomi’s hair had turned red with anger.

Katsuki was about to urge the two to brawl but didn’t get the chance to since his mother placed a hand on Todoroki’s shoulder and said, “Come on. You’ll be riding with me, we have a lot to talk about.”

He knew that his mom wasn’t being intentionally threatening because if she was Todoroki would know, but the other boy still sent him a panicked look as Katsuki’s mother pulled him away towards one of the vans. Katsuki went to follow them to save Todoroki from having to endure that car ride alone but suddenly he was being grabbed by both arms as Mai and Riku carried him away towards another car.

“Don’t think you are gonna get away from us that easy, Kat!” Mai singsonged.

“Yup!” Airi popped the p mockingly. “We also have a whole lot to talk about. I’m sure Shouto will be alright without you.”

“Yeah, you’ve been pretty much attached at the hip since you two got here. Hasn’t given us any time to catch up.” Riku added.

Katsuki ripped himself out of their grip and straightened his leather jacket while glaring at them. “There’s nothing to fucking talk about!”

The three of them all looked at each other before turning back to him with matching incredulous looks.

“That’s a pretty fucking bold statement when you made the news for arresting a villain even the pros have been having trouble with.”

Katsuki whipped his head around and saw Satomi standing behind him. He threw her a grateful look and then gestured to her behind him while looking at his other cousins. “See, that I will talk about.”

Mai pouted, “Aw come on, that’s boring! Tell us about your first kiss with Shouto.”

Katsuki let his arm drop to his side and just stared at Mai with a look of astounded judgement before just simply saying, “No.”

“Well I for one want to hear both so let’s get going before Masato tries to get Katsuki to ride with him.” Airi said.

Airi opened the door to the front passenger seat but before she could get into the car Satomi barreled past her, quickly getting into the seat and slamming the door closed before locking it. Airi yelled at her and banged on the window but Satomi just smuggly pressed her face against the glass making a face at her sister and enjoying her frustration. Riku just laughed and went to go claim the driver’s seat while Mai dragged Katsuki into the car like it was a kidnapping. In a strange turn of events he found himself wishing it were just him and Todoroki in the car like before.

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

As soon as Riku parked the car, Katsuki reached over Airi to open the door and he dove past her, out of the vehicle, into a smooth tuck and roll before he stood up and took off running. After the third degree grilling he received he didn’t want to spend another second in there and it wasn’t exactly rare that he would do this after car rides with his family. In the only 25 minute car ride he managed to dodge most of the questions about him and Todoroki’s relationship mostly thanks to Satomi, who would complain about the topic before changing it to something more interesting like a bank robbery he recently stopped or what he thinks of the current hero rankings. Still, the time cramped in a seat between Mai and Airi made him realize just how much he and Todoroki may actually need to talk about some kind of background to this fake relationship.

He was pulled from his thoughts when headlights caught his attention and he realized a car was coming directly at him skidding on the snowy parking lot. On instinct Katsuki jumped up and landed on his two feet on the hood of the car as it stopped.

The driver’s side window rolled down and his own mother stuck her head out of it. “I hope for your sake you didn't dent my fucking hood! Watch where you're going, dumbass, I raised you better than this.”

“Maybe learn how to fucking drive!” He snapped back at her as he rolled off of the car safely back onto the ground.

“Are you alright?” He looked up to see that Todoroki was leaning his head out of a window as well. His face was neutral but there seemed to be actual concern in his eyes.

“I’m fine, wipe that look off your face. The old hag didn’t even hit me this time.”

“...This time?”

His mom reached out the window and lightly slapped Katsuki on the back of the head and said, “Be nice to him, he nearly had a heart attack. Now move so I can park.”

He rubbed the back of his head and rolled his eyes, taking a step back so she could pull into the parking spot as his cousins walked over. Katsuki felt his phone go off and dug it out of his pocket seeing he got a notification from Satomi on snapchat. Furrowing his brow in confusion he opened it and saw a video of him running across the parking lot and his cousins shouting as he jumped onto his mom’s van. The video slowly zoomed in on him as he and his mom argued and around the video was a boarder that said ‘Wishing You The Happiest Of Holidays’. He groaned when he saw she added it to her snapchat story as well.

“Thanks for that.” He said sarcastically when the group made it over.

“No problem.” She chewed her gum thoughtfully before adding. “Incredible that it’s you we have to worry about in parking lots when we have four little kids to look after.”

“Listen here little miss Breaking Benjamin-”

“She has a point.” Katsuki almost jumped when he realized Todoroki was right next to him. “You should probably be more careful.”

Katsuki let out a snort. “Please, you throw chunks of ice at me that are bigger than that van on a regular basis.”

“Which would make it even more embarrassing if you ended up getting hurt in a tree farm parking lot.”

Satomi actually smiled when Todoroki said this but she hid it by blowing a bubble with her gum and popping it. Judging by the half smile on Todoroki’s face he had still caught it though.

“Whatever, let’s just find a damn tree so we can get the hell out of here.” He was already fed up with the family outing. Things like this never went well considering the nature of his chaotic family. The little kids were already happily pulling everyone from their van towards the entrance of the tree farm, excited to make such an important choice. Yuki squealed when she saw her dad across the way and wiggled in Jin’s arms. Riku grinned and started to pretend to sneak up on her as he made his way over to the little girl and she covered her eyes in excitement. When Riku popped up behind Jin and said ‘Boo!’ the toddler went absolutely wild giggling and reaching out for her dad who lovingly took her from her mother’s arms. Riku could be a dick sometimes but at least he made a pretty okay dad.

The tree hunting process had always been a big deal with his family since everyone was so god damn opinionated it was nearly impossible for everyone to agree on a single tree. Most of the time they had to hold a very in depth vote to decide and whichever one got the majority would be the tree that they came home with. That didn’t come without it’s arguments though because if there was one thing his family was known for it was being stubborn. One unforgettable Christmas, Katsuki had been so upset about the tree he wanted not being chosen that he had blown up the base of the trunk to bring it down so they would be forced to purchase it. They had spent that Christmas with a tree that was partially burnt on one side but at least he had gotten his way.

As they entered the tree farm, Katsuki hung back with Todoroki while his family dispersed to take a look at the various options they had this year. Riku held both of Yuki’s hands as she shakily walked loudly babbling until her dad swung her by her arms as Jin watched with a smile. Meanwhile, the twins ran off nearly immediately with Masato in tow, tripping before scrabbling up and running after them once more. Aunt Hisa worried about how her son would do on his own but Naoko and Rin reassured her that Daiki and Chiho would look after him. Satomi walked arm in arm with Katsuki’s grandpa, slowly trailing after the children while quietly talking to each other. Aunt Akatsuki, Uncle Taiki, and Aunt Mineko all seemed to be chatting about the latest fashion trends but at the same time would stop to discuss each tree and how it would contribute to the interior decoration of Mineko’s home. Katsuki’s mom pulled his father around the farm pointing out certain trees and loudly discussing each one but his father simply smiled at her, listening and nodding his head at the correct times.

Tentative fingers touched his palm and Katsuki looked to Todoroki shocked when he took his hand in his, then quickly tried to school his face into his default annoyed expression.

“What? Think you’re gonna get lost out here or something?” He pointedly looked at their clasped hands.

“Couples usually hold hands?” The way Todoroki said this made it seem like almost a question, as though he wasn’t truly sure. Katsuki let out a harsh sigh before ripping his hand out of Todoroki’s. For a moment the boy looked very nervous but his expression turned to one of confusion when Katsuki instead took his other hand.

“At least give me the warm one, dumbass.” He mumbled and found himself needing to avert his eyes from the small soft smile Todoroki gave him in return.

He threw his attention into looking for a tree, ignoring the way his cheeks burned and pretending that it was far more interesting than the boy next to him. For a while Todoroki just watched him quietly but then he looked around to make sure no one was in listening distance before breaking the silence.

“If someone asks you about our first date, I told your mom it was mountain climbing...I know you like that.” Todoroki leaned in and quietly mentioned this, his shoulder brushing Katsuki’s. Katsuki suppressed a shiver and looked at him in surprise.

“Where did you hear that?”

“Izuku and Kirishima have mentioned it in passing.” The boy mumbled, looking away. Katsuki raised his eyebrow but decided not to press him on the subject, instead checking the fullness of a tree.

“Well, they’re not wrong,” He let out a sigh before continuing. “Listen, if we want my family to leave us alone about our ‘relationship’ then we are gonna have to come up with some story to tell them. Otherwise they’ll never stop fucking asking and obsessing over it. If I hear one more question I’m gonna go apeshit.”

Katsuki noticed how many pine needles had fallen off the tree he was looking at and he grimaced, deeming it unworthy. He tugged Todoroki forward and the boy complied, letting Katsuki lead him around the tree farm by their joined hands. Katsuki kept an eye peeled for any members of his family, not wanting them to overhear their conversation and find out about their scheme.

“Yeah, I’m not sure I’ll be able to keep dodging your mom’s questions. She’s…Enthusiastic. About your life.”

Katsuki snorted humorously, “That’s one way of putting it. I would say criminally insane.”

“I guess we should start by figuring out how long we have been dating.”

“Yeah, ‘dating’.” He clarified with air quotes and Todoroki rolled his eyes but nodded nonetheless. “We shouldn’t say it’s been too long. I don’t want them to think this is permanent just to find out we’ve broken up in a couple weeks.”

A strange look passed across Todoroki’s face quickly enough that he had almost missed it. He hummed in thought for a moment, looking up to the winter sky as he contemplated.

“It would probably be strange for you to have brought me if we only just started dating.” He finally said, turning to look at Katsuki again. “Maybe a couple of months...how about three?”

To Katsuki that seemed like a very long time but he had never been in a relationship, so really any amount of time seemed long to him. Briefly, he wondered if Todoroki had ever dated someone before but he shook the thought from his head. “Fine. But I was the one who had the guts to ask you out.”

Todoroki’s eyebrows disappeared up under his bangs. It might’ve been the most shocked that Katsuki had ever seen him. “What makes you think that?”

“You said our first date was mountain climbing. That’s some shit I would suggest. Also I would be the one who would actually have the guts to ask.”

Todoroki exhaled through his nose and shook his head as if he couldn’t believe what Katsuki was saying. “I was the one who offered to be your ‘fake boyfriend’ and came up with the mountain climbing idea. I’m pretty sure that earns me the ‘ honor ’ of being the one that asked you on a date.”

“Pretty sure I’ve never seen you be the one to suggest going anywhere . You just follow around Deku and his little cult. Hard to believe you would ask anyone on a date let alone me .”

Todoroki was silent which caused Katsuki to turn back to look at him. His cheeks were a bit flush and his mouth was in a hard line as he looked at the ground in thought. The sight didn’t sit well with Katsuki and he sighed, momentarily gripping Shouto’s hand tighter in some lame attempt at comfort.

“Look, if you're going to pout about it you can be the one who did it.” Katsuki muttered.

“No...No, you’re right. I wouldn’t. We’ll say you asked me to go hiking three months ago and I agreed.” He looked up and met Katsuki’s eyes. “You weren’t smooth about it though.”

Katsuki scowled at him while amusement danced across Todoroki's features but oddly Kastuki felt much lighter once he saw that.  

They continued discussing their fake relationship, walking through the snow hand in hand at each other’s side. Katsuki forgot all about the task of finding a tree, instead he focused on Todoroki’s subtle mannerisms while he spoke. They decided on things like how their first kiss would have taken place under the stars and how most of the time because of their schedules they wouldn’t go out on dates so much as stay in watching movies in their dorms. Katsuki even suggested that the way they could have become closer was by having study sessions together. It occurred to him that he must be falling too far into the grift because it all actually sounded...kind of nice.

Katsuki didn’t even register that they had stopped walking until he noticed how close Todoroki was to him. He could see their breath and his gaze traced the frosty air to a pair of lips that at that moment he found strangely appealing. He let himself really take in Todoroki’s face, having never been quite this close he realized things he hadn’t before - like the fact that even his long eyelashes were two different colors. That was when Todoroki blinked and Katsuki was jolted from his thoughts as those beautiful and completely unique eyes locked intensely onto his.

Right as Katsuki started to lean in closer he heard giggling and rapid footsteps coming from his right. He quickly turned his head to the side towards the noise and he heard a sharp intake of breath next to him before the boy next to him did the same. He saw two small figures running amongst the trees and immediately warning sirens went off in his head since that could only spell trouble.

“Hey! What are you little shits doing sneaking around!?” He shouted at them and Daiki walked into sight far too innocently.

“You really shouldn’t curse, Katsuki! You know our mom doesn’t like it when you do that around us!” The little boy said, narrowing his eyes in a way that was almost threatening.

“Don’t fucking try that garbage with me, you know by now it doesn’t work. Now, you have about ten seconds for Thing Two to get out here.” When he said this Chiho walked out as well, hands behind her back and obviously hiding something.

“We’re just helping out with the tree hunting!” She attempted to defend herself but he didn’t believe it for a second.

“What’s behind your back?”

“Nothing-”

“Bullshit. What’s behind your back?

She shifted her gaze and slowly revealing an actual ax for wood cutting that she had somehow hidden despite the fact that it was nearly the same size as her.

“What the fuck.” Katsuki said softly, but with feeling. He then switched to a more authoritative tone as he commanded, “Put that down right now!”

“But we know what tree we want and want to chop it down ourselves! It’s okay, we’ll be careful!” Daiki complained.

Katsuki opened his mouth to continue reprimanding them but was interrupted by Todoroki saying, “Wait, where is Masato?”

The twins eyes widened and they looked around them, guilt appearing on their faces in the realization that their cousin wasn’t with them. Katsuki felt a lump appear in his throat and didn’t even wait for an actual response from the twins. He quickly looked around and saw the section the largest trees were kept. He heard Todoroki shout behind him but he didn’t care as he took off towards the grouping of trees and began to climb up the nearest one.

As he began his ascent, Todoroki stood at the base of the tree and shouted to him, “What can I do?”

“Just stay there until I tell you where to go! I’m fine up here!” He yelled back, already nearly halfway up the tree. He’d always been good at climbing, ever since he was a child, so scaling this pine tree felt like no problem for him even though it would probably be a daunting task to anyone else.

He must have spoken too soon because when he reached for the next branch it was icy enough that his gloved hand slipped right off of it, nearly sending him to the ground. Katsuki growled in annoyance and ripped each of his gloves off with his teeth tossing them over his shoulder, not caring at all where they landed. He continued on, until he could safely go no higher, then began to scan the area for his lost cousin. He had to squint his eyes from the sharp winds of the altitude and could feel his hair whipping around but he ignored it to the best of his ability. Logically he knew that Masato would be fine but he also knew that being only five years old the kid got scared of being alone.

Unable to spot him, Katsuki took a deep breath in before shouting as loud as he could, “Masato!”

He heard nothing back and did this a few more times, at one point throwing a nervous glance downwards just to check that Todoroki was still there waiting. Finally, Katsuki could breathe a sigh of relief when he caught sight of small explosions popping off like fireworks in the distance.

He pointed in the direction and yelled to Todoroki where the little boy was and instantly he took off in a burst of ice and frost in what Ashido called his ‘Frozone Travel Tactic’. He resisted the strong urge to simply jump down from the top of the tree because he knew that any blasts he set off from his hands to break his fall would likely set the tree ablaze. Although, at the pace he was climbing down that wouldn’t be much more dangerous.

As soon as his feet hit the ground he started to run in the direction he had seen the small fireworks from. He didn’t need to go far before he saw Todoroki heading his way, surfing on a path of ice with a small red headed bundle in his arms. The child was gripping Todoroki tightly, face buried in his shoulder and even from where he stood Katsuki could see that he was shaking slightly.

“He’s alright. Just a bit shaken up.” Todoroki told him as soon as he stopped in front of him. When he spoke, Masato’s head popped up almost instantly and he looked around until his gaze landed on Katsuki. He let out an almost pitiful sob and reached out for his cousin with watery eyes. Katsuki made a face at the snot coming from the kid’s nose but still held his arms out so Todoroki could hand him over.

Masato wrapped his arms around Katsuki’s neck and tightly held onto his leather jacket as though his cousin would suddenly disappear if he wasn’t careful. Katsuki bounced him lightly and rubbed his back in an attempt to calm him. Todoroki watched with concern, his arms slightly outstretched as though he wanted to do something but had no idea what. Masato hid his face in Katsuki’s neck and he cringed when he felt the little boy’s cold nose hit his skin but he continued to bounce him.

“Come on, you’re okay, brat. I got ya.” He softly said. “That was quick thinking sending up that distress signal. Pretty impressive.”

The shaking calmed down and the little boy was reduced to just soft sniffles and hiccups. Todoroki gave him a look that was both surprised and impressed at the same time. Katsuki simply gave him a little shrug, careful not to jostle the kid too much.

Masato mumbled something and Katsuki furrowed his eyebrows before saying, “I can’t hear you when you mumble, kid.”

Masato hesitated but then picked up his head so he would no longer be muffled and quickly started rubbing his face in an attempt to hide any tears, “I’m not supposed to be scared! I’m not supposed to cry!”

Another broken sob came from the child and he covered his eyes as though that would make the two unable to tell how upset he was. Katsuki felt a pang in his heart for the boy but it was nothing compared to the devastated look that flashed across Todoroki’s face.

Before Katsuki could ask who the fuck said that so he could beat the shit out of them, Todoroki put a gentle hand on the little boys shoulder coaxing him to look at him. Once he did, he gently questioned, “And why would you think that?”

Masato’s lip wobbled and he stuttered a few times trying to form the correct words until he wailed, “I want to be a hero! So I can’t-”

The kid interrupted himself with another cry and felt anger bubble up inside him at the pressure that must have already been put on the child. “Heroes are scared all the time and any pro hero that says otherwise is fucking lying to you or is a complete dumbass that will probably die within the week.”

“Fear is a natural response to protect yourself in a dangerous situation and without that instinct a person wouldn’t survive. Being brave is doing things despite being scared like how instead of sitting down and giving up you thought of a way to alert us to where you were.” Todoroki added.

Masato calmed down more and more as they spoke, going from crying to mulling over their words in his head. Finally he muttered in a quiet voice to Katsuki, “But...you’re never scared.”

Immediately Katsuki started shaking his head to put that idea to rest. He momentarily glanced at Todoroki unsure about opening up like this in front of his classmate but this was too important. “I get scared far more than I’d like to admit.”

“You should have seen how scared we were when we couldn’t find you.” Todoroki said and Masato flushed a bit at that statement, like he was embarrassed for having caused trouble.

“I…” Masato paused for a moment trying to find what he wanted to say. “I want my mom.”

A melancholic look settled across Todoroki’s features and the other boy took a steadying breath before thickly saying, “We’ll go find her then.”

Masato nodded with obvious gratefulness in his expression and he rested his head on Katsuki’s shoulder when they walked off to go find his mother. The child watched Todoroki who was staring at the snow as he walked, eyes focused on nothing in particular. Masato shifted in Katsuki’s arms and then reached his own arm out offering a hand to Todoroki. He looked up in surprise but soon realized what the child wanted and gently took the small hand in his own, which seemed to satiate Masato. Todoroki attempted to give the little boy a small reassuring smile and they continued walking like that, looking up and down the rows of trees for anyone in the family.

Katsuki’s Aunt Hisa wasn’t that hard to find and they eventually found her near the entrance of the farm, speaking with Aunt Mineko. As soon as she was in sight Masato started to wiggle in his arms and he put him down to the little boy could quickly run to his mother with his arms wide open. She smiled when she saw him, instantly kneeling down and opening her arms so he could hug her. Once she noticed his tear streaked face she began to fuss over him and stood up holding the boy in her arms as he told her what happened. Aunt Hisa was peppering Masato’s face with kisses when Katsuki finally turned to look at Todoroki and saw him watching the two with emotion written all over his face.

When Katsuki realized what was wrong it almost felt like a slap to the face. Memories of Todoroki explaining his childhood to Deku at their first year sports festival flooded his head. Katsuki wouldn’t be at all surprised if what was going through Todoroki’s head was thoughts of his own mother. He hesitated for a moment but, remembering what he had explained to Masato about bravery, he reached out and took Todoroki’s hand in his own like before. Todoroki looked at their clasped hands and then gave a small squeeze before meeting Katsuki’s gaze, an unsaid ‘thank you’ passing between them.

There was a sudden loud snapping noise that caused both of them to jolt in surprise before jumping back right as a tree fell directly in front of them. Katsuki stared at it for a moment, mouth agape, and then turned when he heard loud cheering. Behind the stump of the tree the twins were happily jumping in place excited and whooping while Daiki held up an ax. Katsuki slammed a hand to his forehead and nearly screamed in frustration.

“I guess we have a tree then.” Todoroki said from beside him.

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

Since it was cut down they had to purchase the tree the twins had decided on despite the fact that it looked lopsided, half of the tree being suspiciously sparse. Aunt Mineko complained endlessly about the thing being in her otherwise pristinely decorated home but Katsuki’s father insisted that it would look beautiful just as long as they positioned the tree correctly. The twins enthusiastically agreed with his dad as they watched him and Katsuki put a tarp over one of the vans and tie the tree down to the roof.

Once it was all said and done Masato begged for him and ‘Tododoki’ to sit with him during the car ride and, knowing his other option was enduring his older cousins again, Katsuki agreed. The ride ended up being filled with happy babbling from Masato to the two of them about what he wants his hero costume to be and his ideas for his hero names that he is working on. Todoroki seemed to listen to intently his chatter and nodded at the correct times, responding with serious input that had Masato nodding with wide eyes paying rapt attention.

They all made it back to the mansion, Katsuki’s mother having done multiple headcounts, and the way they burst into the home felt more like a destructive stampede than an exhausted family coming back from tree-wrangling. Katsuki turned around to help with taking down the tree but Riku stopped him with a hand to Katsuki’s forehead. He swatted his hand away as Riku laughed.

“Head on inside, I’ll take care of the tree with Masaru.” He offered. “Jin is inside making some of the good hot chocolate and Satomi is going to be watching Christmas movies with the kids if you want to join them.”

The last part was meant to be teasing and Katsuki was about to snap back at him but before he could Todoroki’s eyes widened with interest. “What movies?”

Riku tilted his head to the side, interested in Todoroki’s curiosity, and started to list them. “Just classic ones like Rudolph, A Year Without A Santa Claus, Christmas Story, Home Alone, things like that.”

“Oh...I’ve never seen them.”

“Never...Holy shit, kid!” Riku was staring at Todoroki in shock and Katsuki was right there with him. “Get Shouto inside right now before they start the first one!”

Riku shoved the two of them in the direction of the house and automatically Katsuki shoved him back but listened to him, making sure Shouto got a real Christmas movie experience more important than starting a scuffle. When they entered the living room all the kids were snuggled up together on some pillows on the ground, covered in blankets and fighting over which movie to watch first. Satomi just let them fight it out while scrolling through her phone. Katsuki easily put a stop to that by taking the DVD Yuki was currently chewing the case of and holding it up.

“We’re watching Rudolph first.” It wasn’t up for debate and the kids didn’t seem to mind the decision, eagerly nodding and settling into place creating essentially a dog pile to warm up from the cold. Katsuki tossed the movie to Satomi like a frisbee and she caught it easily, most people in his family developed excellent reflexes with what they had to deal with on a daily basis. She set up the film on the large flatscreen TV his Aunt Mineko prided herself on and Katsuki flopped down onto the couch next to Todoroki. Satomi was going to sit in an armchair but was basically absorbed into the pile on the floor when the kids reached out for her.

Katsuki sat cross legged up on the couch in an odd but comfortable position while Todoroki was already sunk into the couch watching the beginning of the movie play out in front of him. He made a few comments about the animation but for the most part he was absorbed in the classic film. Katsuki found himself ignoring the movie he had seen many times before and instead focused on the boy beside him and the way the lights around the room sparkled in his eyes.

“Who wants hot chocolate!” Jin broke the moment by walking in with a tray of mugs and was greeted by a chorus of excited kids who were making grabby hands towards the mugs. The woman laughed and carefully walked over and then provided each of them with a mug of the warm drink. When she got to Todoroki her smile turned a touch mischievous. “And here is an extra special one for our extra special guest.”

Katsuki let out a short laugh when Jin handed Todoroki a hot chocolate that had a candy cane placed in it sticking out of the whipped cream and hooked onto the side of the mug. Todoroki even seemed amused when he thanked her. Before leaving she also grabbed a blanket that she threw over their laps since the two were the only ones who hadn’t acquired one yet. Katsuki settled in just a touch closer to Todoroki and realized just how comfortable he was in that moment as he took a sip of hot chocolate.

They were at the scene where Rudolph saved his friends from the abominable snowman when Todoroki began to eat his candy cane.

Katsuki found himself unable to look away as the boy sucked on the candy, captivated by his lips and the slight red tint to them from the crimson ribbons that wound their way around the peppermint treat. The stray thought of if his lips would taste like peppermint crept its way into his head and he gripped a piece of the blanket tightly as he willed the thought to go away. He was nearly successful in turning his attention to the movie when Satomi decided to pipe in.

“You can kiss him if you want, Katsuki, no one gives a damn.”

Katsuki spluttered and nearly choked on his hot chocolate while Satomi watched him, unimpressed, looking up from where she was laying on the ground with Chiho’s head resting on her stomach. Todoroki raised his eyebrow at Katsuki’s response to the statement and Katsuki scowled at him and said, “Don’t look at me like-”

Katsuki was cut off when Todoroki shoved the candy cane he had been eating into Katsuki’s mouth and then placed a kiss on his cheek. Katsuki’s face immediately flushed and there was a loud crunch as his jaw clenched, biting right through the candy cane. Todoroki looked at him in confusion at the noise. “Do you really eat candy canes like that?”

“Just shut up and watch the movie.” Katsuki spoke around the shards of candy he was currently chewing.

Shouto let out air through his nose in a way that was almost a laugh and leaned back against the couch to go back to the film. When he sat back he was even closer to Katsuki to the point that their shoulders were touching but at the moment he couldn’t focus on that as his brain replayed the clip of the cheek kiss over and over again.

They ended up watching Christmas movies for the rest of the day, taking breaks only for meals and for getting snacks. Once the kids heard that Todoroki hadn’t seen most of the movies they took it upon themselves to educate him with their favorite ones, which Todoroki didn’t seem to mind. He actually enjoyed most of the movies and although he didn’t exactly laugh at the comedies he did hold an amused look in his eyes when watching them. At least he did until he couldn’t understand a joke which was when he would turn to Katsuki in curiosity and he would explain. Satomi seemed to find that funnier than the actual jokes themselves. The kids got extremely excited during the snowmiser and heatmiser songs, turning to Todoroki excitedly and pointing at the screen all talking over each other but with the same sentiment of that it was him. That was the moment during all the films that Todoroki really smiled.

When the movie Jingle All The Way started, Katsuki felt his eyelids begin to get heavy. It wasn’t long into the movie until he felt himself sink deeper into the couch, enjoying the comfortable warmth around him as the world faded to black.

Chapter Text

Katsuki cradled his warm cup of coffee in his hands, leaning on the counter and looking down at his phone in front of him. He opened up was a text Mai had sent the night before with the words “Someone is looking cozy!” along with the eyes emoji and an attached image. Lighting up the screen was a photo of him asleep on the couch with a blanket draped over him and his head resting on Todoroki’s shoulder. Even though he was mostly under the blanket he could see he had both his arms hooked around Todoroki’s left as if in his sleep he was trying to hold onto the other boy’s warmth. Todoroki was looking down at him with a soft look of awe that had Katsuki’s chest constrict in a way he was becoming all too familiar with. He held his thumb down on the image to save it, but was interrupted by a voice that spoke up behind him.

“I couldn’t stop Mai from taking that.” Katsuki turned around and faced Satomi whose hair was a relaxed purple as she poured herself a mug of coffee. “I asked her to help me out with carrying the kids to bed but she almost dropped Yuki when she saw you’re a cuddler.”

“I’m not a fucking cuddler ,” he growled. “It’s just cold.”

Satomi rolled her eyes and mixed some milk into her coffee, “Yeah, sure. That’s why you wouldn’t let go of him and why he had to carry you to bed.”

Katsuki narrowed his eyes. “What the fuck are you on about?”

A mischievous smirk came to her face. “Shouto carried you upstairs. It was pretty cute. Princess style and everything.”

Logically he knew he had to have gotten to bed somehow but it hadn’t occurred to him that Todoroki had been the reason that he had woken up once again in the boy’s arms rather than on couch he’d nodded off on. This morning he had stirred awake to the soothing up and down motion of Todoroki’s chest as he breathed, sprawled diagonally across the boy with his face mashed into the pillow next to his head and Todoroki’s arm slung comfortably around his waist. The scene probably would have looked ridiculous had anyone walked in, but Katsuki was just thankful that Todoroki somehow managed to sleep through his nightly migrations. 

He glared at her for the teasing and reached out to take her coffee mug, ignoring her protests as he replaced it with his own empty mug. “You’re too young for coffee.”

“Hey! What the hell!”

“If you wanted to keep it you should have thought about that before deciding to run your mouth.” Katsuki grumbled before taking a pointed sip from the mug. Pulling a face, he continued, “no milk next time.”

Satomi’s hair flared red as she tried to pounce at Katsuki but he simply planted a foot on her shoulder, effectively keeping her at bay while he drank her coffee. She tried valiantly to reach out and grab the drink but Katsuki merely smirked at her, deliberately slurping his next sip as she tried unsuccessfully to duck around the leg that stood between her and her drink. 

"Give her back her coffee, I don't need you blowing the place up because you've got caffeine sweats.” Katsuki’s mother walked in and harshly pinched his calf so he would put his leg down and she could get past them to place some dishes in the sink. 

“If you were any of my other cousins this would've been poured over your head.” Katsuki warned as he passed the mug back to Satomi, who looked more than fine with the truce as she nodded. 

“Don’t fucking threaten your cousins you little shit!” His mother turned around, grabbing him by the collar, the usual fire in her eyes that Katsuki easily matched.

“I didn't even do anything, get your ugly mitts off me!” He growled and shoved her hands away. Satomi watched the exchange with a bored expression, already a veteran to this sort of bickering between the two. She delicately sipped her coffee and left the room with her prize. 

“Shut your trap for two goddamn seconds, I gotta talk to you about something.” She lightly smacked his forehead with a spatula before going back to the dishes. 

“You started it-” He snapped but she cut him off.

“Something serious.” Katsuki relented at that by crossing his arms and leaning back against the counter to hear her out. 

"So you know I had a long conversation with Shouto yesterday." Her eyes moved from the plate she was cleaning up to his. Katsuki recognized the calculating look behind them and steeled himself for the worst. Of all his family, his mother was by far the most observant and if anyone was going to figure out that their relationship was a ruse, it'd be her. With a steadying breath he simply nodded in reply, tapping his fingers against his forearm in a subtle fidget. 

“What is Shouto’s home life like?”

Katsuki’s eyes widened and he took a sharp breath in that made his mom look up and grimace before saying, “That’s what I thought.” 

“It’s complicated.” He finally said. “And not for me to say.”

“Neither of you have to tell me.” She sighed. “I was just worried about some of the things he said... He told me that he hasn't even had you over. I'm sure he lives in a nice neighborhood, and with how strong you two are you shouldn't have to worry about any unsavory characters anyway, which got me thinking that-”

“I haven’t taken him home either.” He pointed out.

“That’s not the point. You did it because you keep trying to keep us out of your private life. He seemed anxious about it.”

“Mom, just lay off-” 

“Not to mention that whole thing about Endeavor at dinner when he first got here-”

Mom -”

“Fuck! It’s Endeavor, isn’t it. He always looked like a fucking bastard .” She furiously scrubbed at an already clean pan. “I swear to god I’ll beat his fucking ass if he even thinks about-”

Damn it would you fucking listen to me!? ” He slammed his fist to the marble counter and there was a rattle from the drying dishes on the rack next to his mother causing her to finally look up at him. “No one wants to kill that bastard more than me so fucking get in line but Shouto doesn’t want people to know about this so I need you to shut your fucking mouth for once.”

He stared her down, breathing heavily in anger and gripping the side of the counter with white knuckles while his mom looked back at him in shock. Not giving her the chance to interrupt, he powered on.

“He’s worked hard to be more than just his name and the last thing he needs is for people to think about him as just some story in the news before he even has the chance to surpass his father. It would be great if he didn’t think he had to do this alone since he’s actually surrounded by people that care about him but it’s his fucking choice. So you need to not say a word about it. Got it?”

Katsuki stood panting after his miniature rant, eyes daring his mother to argue with anything that he’d just said. Ready for a fight, his jaw nearly dropped when his mom’s face broke into a huge smile.

“You love him.” 

What?

“You can lie to everyone else- and even yourself- but you can’t lie to me.” She stated confidently, which was ironic given the fact he had been lying to her about his relationship status this whole time. “I was the same way with your father.”

“We’re not the same.”

“I know you hate hearing it, brat, but sometimes we share similarities beyond our good looks. That includes being protective of what and who we love.” She smiled a softer smile that he rarely saw come to her face. “I remember the first time I realized I really loved your father. We were at work and someone else in the office accidentally tripped him and he cut his hand on a pair of fabric scissors.”

She let out a light laugh before saying, “By god I almost tore her fucking head off for that. Masaru somehow managed to hold me back and staunch the bleeding at the same time while I threatened to send those scissors through her skull. It’s a miracle we didn’t get fired.”

She quieted to a surprising level, “I... was so angry seeing him hurt. Even though it wasn’t that bad of a cut I just lost my mind. Just the idea of him bleeding was… I told him I loved him later that day and that he didn’t need to say it back yet. He did though.”

She smiled again and looked Katsuki right in the eyes, “You should tell Shouto how you feel. I’m pretty damn sure he feels the same.” 

His breath caught in his throat for a moment and he couldn’t believe what he was hearing. His mom’s smile just widened which he couldn’t even begin to understand. He swallowed thickly before he finally spoke up, “We’ve only been dating for three months. I’m not telling him something like…”

He trailed off, unable to finish the sentence. It felt strange lying like this when he was usually so unabashedly truthful. Thinking about the possibility of something like love just left a strange feeling in his stomach and he clenched his fists when he felt his palms begin to sweat. 

“It seems like a difficult thing to say but,” she put the last dish on the drying rack. “When the time is right its surprisingly easy. Now, you should go save Shouto. I think he’s been entertaining children.”

She paused as though she suddenly remembered something and then grabbed Katsuki by the ear yanking him down to her level as he made a noise of pained protest. “You also better let that boy know that he is always fucking welcome with us! He’s a part of this damn family now and we don’t take shit from anybody trying to mess with one of ours! You hear me?” 

“Fuck! I hear you!” He smacked her hand until she let go and rubbed at his ear. 

“Good.” She pinched his cheek in retaliation and he bared his teeth in a snarl but she easily ignored him. “Also ask Shouto if he wants more coffee.”

“If he drinks any more of that shit his heart is gonna give out.” He turned to leave the kitchen and his mom followed him after patting her hands one last time on the dish towel next to the sink.

“But he always looks so tired!”

“That’s just his face.” He was about to say more but that was when he literally walked into the boy in question. Todoroki looked at him stunned for a moment before he recovered.

“What about my face?” He slightly tilted his head to the side in curiosity but Katsuki grabbed him by the jaw and righted it, staring at his face as though he was doing an inspection. 

“Yup, you look like shit. Sleep better.” 

Todoroki pouted in a way that was almost cute and muttered, “I’ve been sleeping fine.”

“You just look like shit then.” He stated, finally releasing Todoroki from his hold. 

“Katsuki!” His mom angrily glared at him and then turned to Todoroki with a far softer look. “Shouto, don’t listen to him. You’re very handsome.”

Katsuki grunted noncommittally, neither confirming nor denying, and reached up to fix Todoroki’s hair where red was tangled with white. The boy’s hair was unfairly silky and Katsuki had to suppress the impulse to run his hand through it. He watched in fascination as a light flush blossomed on Todoroki’s cheeks and was only pulled out of it when he heard his mother’s laugh.

“Remember what we talked about, brat.” She threw him a wink and then walked away leaving the two of them in the hall.

“Remember what?” Todoroki prodded.

“It’s nothing .”

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

Katsuki wrapped the gingerbread dough he had helped make with his father and grandfather in plastic wrap before placing it in the fridge to chill with the many previous batches. The amount of cookies consumed by his family during the holidays could be considered criminal and the three would spend a lot of time preparing them each year. Truly Katsuki didn’t know what the family did before his mom brought his dad home since most of them were absolutely useless when it came to baking. None of them had the patience to do it right and always cranked up the heat, burning their baked goods in the process. 

The dessert that took the longest were of course everyone’s favorite, gingerbread cookies. It became a tradition for the younger people in the house to decorate the gingerbread men while anyone of drinking age would partake in some spiked eggnog in the other room. Katsuki’s main job had been baking the cookies ever since he was old enough to be allowed to use the oven, so that his dad and grandpa could join the other adults. 

Katsuki untied his apron and pulled it off of himself, wiping the flour dusted over his hands onto the already dirty fabric and hanging it up on a hook for later use. Knowing it was cookie day he used the mess he would likely become as an excuse to wear his more comfortable clothes. Currently he was in his normal baggy jeans and a long sleeved army green shirt that had two buttons at the collar he always left undone. The shirt was a bit tighter around the shoulders than he preferred, he found that was usually the case with clothing, but at least it was comfortably loose around the waist. 

He left the kitchen at last and decided to go on the hunt for Todoroki to save him from whichever family member had stolen him away this time. It wasn’t exactly the easiest task due to the size of his Aunt Mineko’s house but he eventually managed to find him in one of the living rooms with the twins. Nothing could prepare him for the scene before him, though.

Todoroki was sitting on the ground with his legs crossed and the twins around him with various beauty tools strewn about. Currently, Chiho was sitting in front of Todoroki biting her lip in concentration while she carefully put a sparkly lip gloss over the purple lipstick she already put on him. Meanwhile, Daiki was behind Todoroki pulling his hair back out of his face into pastel butterfly clips. The look was accompanied by a horrible bright pink blush high on the boy’s cheekbones and a sparkly purple eyeshadow up to his eyebrows which must have been chosen to match the lip color he was sporting. The whole thing clashed with the light blue sweater Todoroki was wearing in the most horrible way and Katsuki couldn’t stop himself from letting out a broken wheeze. Todoroki’s head shot up at the sound causing Chiho to make an affronted noise when she accidentally got lipgloss on his chin, which she quickly wiped away with her hand.

Once Todoroki looked at him head on like that Katsuki burst out laughing, unable to hold it back any longer. He usually would do anything he could to suppress his real laugh since he always ended up letting out a snort every time he inhaled. His family had tried to tell him it was cute but if anything he thought he sounded like some sort of choking hell-goblin. Todoroki stared at him with wide eyes and lips parted in surprise as Katsuki filled the room with his raucous laugh.

“You look fucking ridiculous!” He finally managed to squeak out in a way he would probably be embarrassed about later. “Shit! You look like you’re gonna murder me in my sleep tonight!” 

Todoroki snapped out of whatever daze he was in and a small mischievous smile came to his face. “I just might.” 

“Well I think he looks great!” Daiki grinned as he put the last strand of Todoroki’s hair back into a clip.

“Yeah! What’s your problem Katsuki!?” Chiho added, looking slightly offended by her cousin’s reaction.

“Yeah, Katsuki. What is your problem?” Todoroki raised an eyebrow, an action that nearly sent Katsuki into another fit of laughter that he had to cover his mouth to avoid. Todoroki stood up and began walking closer to him. Deadpan he said, “You don’t think I’m beautiful?” 

Katsuki let out another cut off laugh and held his hand out as if warning Todoroki to stay back. “You stay the fuck away from me.”

This just made Todoroki’s smile widen into what was probably the closest to a grin Katsuki had ever seen from him. The look only seemed to accentuate the poorly applied lipstick and blush which sent Katsuki over the edge into full blown laughter again as Todoroki leaned in closer. “Come on, tell me I'm pretty.” 

“I’ll blow your ass up! Don’t think I won’t!” He threatened while backing up. Todoroki sent him a sly look and Katsuki realized the challenge that had been issued far too late.

Todoroki tackled him right as he was about to run, just narrowly avoiding sending them flying into the grand piano in the room that his Aunt Mineko had bought but no one knew how to play. They momentarily slid across the hardwood floor and Katsuki tried to wiggle his way out enough to kick him off but was too weak from his laugh attack. Todoroki used this to his advantage and pinned his arms along the sides of his head and Katsuki turned away, still trying to hide his face as he nearly screamed with laughter.

“Tell me I’m pretty, Katsuki.”

“Fuck no!”

With no other warning, Shouto leaned down and pressed a sloppy kiss to his cheek with a loud exaggerated kissing noise making sure to wipe as much purple lipstick as he could onto Katsuki’s face. Katsuki breathily threatened to kill him but still continued to let out mirthful snorts while he tried to shake Todoroki off of him. Todoroki chuckled on top of him, his face now covered in the smudged lipstick giving him a new but equally ridiculous look. Finally, Katsuki managed to knee Todoroki in the stomach making the boy let out a soft ‘oof’ before he managed to push him off of him.

“You bastard!” Katsuki wheezed and gave Todoroki one final shove to the shoulder but choked off a laugh looking at his face again. “You need to wash that off, I can’t fucking look at you like this.”

“Hmm, well, it looks like you have a little something on your face, too.” Todoroki poked his cheek and then held up his finger showing the purple lip color that rubbed off onto it. In retaliation Katsuki immediately went to wipe the lipstick off of his face onto Todoroki’s sweater but he was quick enough to stop him, pushing Katsuki back with a hand to the face as he let out another chuckle. Katsuki considered biting his hand when the twins decided it was time to remind him of their presence. 

“If you two are done being gross, since you destroyed our work that means you can’t say no to us when we ask to have a snowball fight!” Chiho said with a grin.

“Yes! Snowball fight!” Daiki jumped excitedly in place and punched the air, already hyped up. Katsuki groaned and slumped back against the floor with a thump. After slaving away in the kitchen the last thing he felt like was babysitting the kids outside.

But then again, it would feel pretty damn nice to pelt Todoroki with some snowballs right about now.

“Alright, fine, but it’s gonna be me and Shouto that are team captains. Got it? Get Satomi and Masato.” When he said this, the twins let out a cheer and ran out of the room with him shouting to them, “And tell your mom to get you ready for the snow!”

“Do you have any idea how to get this stuff off?” Todoroki asked as he rubbed at his cheek with his sleeve.

“Quit it! You’ll ruin your sweater.” Katsuki swatted at his hand as though he didn’t threaten just moments before to rub lipstick on aforementioned sweater, and Todoroki stopped what he was doing as he watched Katsuki get to his feet. “Come on, I think I saw makeup wipes in our bathroom. Otherwise we could steal some from Aunt Mineko. She fuckin’ needs them with the amount of makeup she piles on.” 

Katsuki didn’t help Todoroki up as a sort of petty revenge for tackling him but Todoroki didn’t seem to expect it anyway. He got to his feet and caught up with Katsuki as he walked out of the room. 

“Maybe if she sees me like this she’ll stop asking me to model for her agency.”

“She still going on about that?”

“Relentlessly.”

“Well, there is a good chance she will never stop so either say yes or get used to it. If see sees you like this she’ll probably just say you can work avant garde.”

“Get used to it?”

Katsuki stopped as he opened their bedroom door and faced Todoroki, picking up something subtle in his tone but unable to recognize what it was. He realized that he’d made it sound like, though, and quickly corrected himself. “For the rest of this vacation at least. Then you’re free. You have the rest of the week still ahead of you to deal with.”

“I see…” 

Todoroki’s eyes dropped to the floor in thought so Katsuki left him to it and walked through their room to the attached bathroom. He ripped open the cabinets and began rummaging through the toiletries looking for the makeup wipes he had sworn he saw. Todoroki walked into the room just as Katsuki let out a triumphant noise and held up his prize with a victorious smirk that left his face once he took a closer look at the packaging. 

“Rose scented? Why does everything have to be fucking floral.” He complained but fished a wipe out of the package regardless before tossing it at Todoroki. He had aimed at his face but the boy anticipated his move and caught it easily. 

Katsuki scrubbed furiously at the kiss mark smudged onto his cheek. By the time the two of them were done removing the makeup there was a comically large pile of used makeup wipes in front of Todoroki despite there being a few stray pieces of glitter left on his face. At the moment, he was struggling to take one of the butterfly clips tangled in his hair out and Katsuki let himself enjoy watching the effort for a moment before rolling his eyes with a sigh.

“Stop, you’re gonna rip your hair out of your damn head.” Todoroki almost jumped in surprise at the sound of his voice. “Sit on the edge of the tub.”

“Why?”

“Just do it.”

Todoroki complied and sat down like he was asked as he looked up at Katsuki with those mismatched eyes of his as he moved to stand in front of him. With his hair out of his face like this Katsuki could truly take in the crystalline quality of his eyes and the sharp elegant angles of his face. It was really no surprise that every girl, as well as some of the boys, in their school seemed to dream about the boy in front of him. 

Todoroki’s eyes widened slightly when Katsuki’s hands went to his hair to gently and skillfully untangle the clip. With the way that his head was tilted Katsuki could see how Todoroki’s adam’s apple bobbed as he swallowed and he found himself slightly mesmerized by the sight. He shifted his focus back to the task at hand.

Katsuki was left stunned when working through a particularly stubborn knot Todoroki let out a content soft sigh and let his eyes slip closed. He leaned into Katsuki’s touch as though he was subconsciously urging him on to continue and he tried to calm his heart as he did what was asked of him. It didn’t take him much longer to remove the rest of the butterfly clips.

“Katsuki?”

Todoroki saying his name in a questioning tone made him realize he was now just idly running his fingers through the boy’s hair and Katsuki ripped his hands away as though he had been burned.  

“Hurry up. The gremlins are probably already waiting outside for us.” Katsuki accidentally used more force than necessary when he spoke and made a swift exit out of the room, unable to deal with being in the small space with the other boy anymore. 

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

When they finally walked outside the kids were indeed waiting for them, Masato making little snow angels that Daiki was adding devil horns to while Chiho tried to grab at Satomi’s phone to get her attention. Masato was the first to notice them and let out an excited squeal that made Katsuki wince. The little boy rolled around as he attempted to get to his feet in the amount of snow gear he was wearing but when he managed it he quickly ran towards them.

“I want to be on Katsuki’s team!” Masato grabbed onto his arm to claim him and managed to hang on even when Katsuki lifted his arm, attempting to shake him off as the little boy’s feet dangled off of the ground. Masato simply laughed like it was a fun game. 

“If you don’t let go you won’t be.” The child grinned and released him knowing that was Katsuki’s subtle way of giving in to his demands.

“Well that means we both get Shouto!” Daiki proclaimed as he took a surprised Todoroki by the hand. Chiho rapidly nodded in agreement and grabbed Todoroki’s other hand in solidarity, holding it up like a prize. 

“No way in hell I’m letting you two on the same team, I’m not an idiot.” Katsuki knew the twins were always at a loss if they didn’t have the other at their side and he planned to exploit that. 

“Too scared of a couple of kids?” They both spoke at the same time and tilted their heads to the side in a way that was meant to look innocent but really just made them look like the twins from The Shining.

“It sounds to me like he is.” Todoroki backed them up. “Talking in sync like that is certainly scary.”

The twins grinned up at Todoroki as though that was the best compliment he could have given them. 

“I’m not fucking scared.” Katsuki growled with a sneer that showed too much of his teeth. “Fine. You two can be on the same team but I am not going easy on you.” He held up a gloved hand, raising fingers as he listed off the rules. “Once you are hit by a snowball three times you are out. I don’t wanna see any fucking tears, you know what you signed up for. No quirk usage from me or Shouto allowed. We all get fifteen minutes to build defenses and come up with strategies starting now . Green Day you’re with me.”

The twins let out cheers as they dragged Todoroki away and Satomi rolled her eyes at the nickname but still shoved her phone into her pocket as she followed Katsuki to the other side of the yard. 

Once they were out of hearing range Katsuki laid out his orders. “Alright the two of you need to separate the twins in order to take them down, they are useless without each other. If either of you see Shouto just run to cover, I’ll be taking care of him. Brat, I need you to use your small size to your advantage, you’ll be able to sneak up on them easy. And for god’s sake don’t use your quirk, I don’t need to explain to your mom that you killed someone. You’re the one who is supposed to announce that I did.”

Masato listened to him like his word was gospel and nodded along. Katsuki then turned to a bored looking Satomi and snapped her fingers in front of her face to get her attention, “Listen up Taking Back Sunday ‘cause I’m not saying this twice. I need you to watch both our backs out there since I’m going to be busy trying to take down Shouto and the kid here is still working on his reflexes. If I get hit by anyone out there that isn’t Shouto I’m holding you personally responsible. Also if we win I’ll sneak you into a tattoo parlor to get your eyebrow pierced like I know you want to. Now get to work making snowballs while I make the snowbank. Brat, you’re on distraction duty.” 

Satomi perked up at Katsuki’s bribery and her hair turned into a happy green before she got down on her knees and started to rapidly form snowballs. Masato gave him a mitten clad thumbs up and then turned towards the other team to start making faces at them. Shouto listened to the twins talk about what Katsuki assumed was their game plan while he easily made snowballs and the twins worked on their own snowbank for protection. Katsuki narrowed his eyes momentarily but relaxed when he saw Shouto wasn’t using his quirk to help him. 

Chiho ended up becoming the one distracted by Masato’s antics and tried to climb over the snow wall she was working on in rage when she saw the red-headed little kid was doing some dance directed at them that included wiggling his butt at them and sticking out his tongue mockingly. Shouto looked alarmed at the sudden aggression as Chiho made a cutthroat gesture and he looked over at Katsuki who flashed him a feral grin and stuck out his own tongue. He would have flipped the bird at him too but he was too busy building their snow defenses. Shouto sent him a competitive look that Katsuki had seen many times over the years and the intense look in his dual colored eyes only served to make excitement grow in Katsuki’s chest at the prospect of a fight. 

Eventually an alarm on Satomi’s phone echoed through the air and a tense silence descended upon all of them like the calm before the storm. Masato let out a war cry that caused everyone to jump into action as he threw the first snowball. Satomi handed Katsuki an armful of snowballs and he bared his teeth in his trademark feral grin that usually came to his face in times he knew he was in for a good battle. The twins screamed in response and both of them tackled Todoroki to the ground behind their snow wall right before Katsuki’s team started to rapidly fire the snowballs at them. They pelted the wall with snowballs from a safe distance while Shouto and the twins were huddled behind their defense like soldiers in the trenches of a war film drama. 

“Come out and fight you damn cowards!” Katsuki yelled in frustration but when Todoroki walked out calmly from behind the snowbank Katsuki paused in surprise. He would soon find that to be a devastating blow for his team. 

“Chiho. Daiki. Unleash hell.” He ordered in his monotone voice and the twins ran out from behind him and laughed in a way that could only spell trouble before they clasped their ungloved hands together. Fog poured out onto the battlefield and started to swirl around them getting thicker and thicker while Todoroki didn’t even spare them a glance, instead focusing in on Katsuki. He smirked slightly at him and Katsuki growled in frustration as Todoroki disappeared from sight, consumed by the fog as it spread across the yard.

“Fuck!” He knew this was a possibility but he didn’t expect Todoroki to actually have the twins do it since it would mean he would be unable to see as well. That bastard had some plan up his sleeve and Katsuki wasn’t taking any chances. Right as the fog got to them Katsuki picked Masato up and threw him over his team’s snow wall which made the little kid laugh, used to being tossed around. “Change of plans, kid, you stay out of the fog and make more snowballs. Throw shit at anyone that comes out of there and yell for me if you need help.”

He turned to Satomi and quickly said, “You’re comin’ with me. Whistle if you need help. Take out one of the twins so they can’t do this bullshit anymore. They can only use one hand to throw now so you’re at an advantage meaning if you fuck this up you are dead to me. Let’s go.”

The normally apathetic girl nodded with a new sense of competition obviously motivated by Katsuki’s bribery and she didn’t hesitate to follow him when he jumped into the fog. Almost immediately he was barely able to see more than a few feet in front of him, leaving him nearly blind to any attackers. It didn’t take long for him to lose Satomi in the fog but he had to trust she would be fine. After all, he had bigger fish to fry. 

He tread through the snow lightly in an attempt to not give away his position but try as he might he couldn’t find a clue as to where Todoroki was. After a while of traipsing around Katsuki crouched down and simply listened to his surroundings. He heard the twins laughing but it seemed far enough away that he didn’t need to worry about it and he knew Satomi was likely closing in on them. 

That’s when he heard the telltale crunch of snow beneath a boot behind him. 

Before Todoroki could smash a snowball into the back of his head Katsuki dropped his own ammo in order to grab him by the arm and throw him over his shoulder. Todoroki was slammed into the snow in front of him with a small grunt of surprise and the snowballs he had been carrying in his arms scattered around him, leaving him with only the one in his hand. Katsuki, thinking quickly, grabbed the snowball from his grip and essentially slapped Todoroki in the face with it. Katsuki let out a victorious laugh that was cut off by a fistfull of snow shoved into his face.

Son of a bitch! ” Katsuki rolled across the ground in an attempt to put some distance between them and grabbed a handful of snow as he popped back up and began shaping a snowball while he took off running. He could hear Todoroki chasing after him and for a moment Katsuki was confused about how he could see him in the blinding fog but then realized that he must be following the path his footprints laid out.

He was about to throw the snowball in his hand at Todoroki but he heard the sounds of a scuffle to his left. He could just barely make out the shapes of Satomi and the twins duking it out via snow so Katsuki shifted his course. He ran directly at what he assumed was the twins and using a drive by tactic he smashed the snowball into the back of one of their heads and continued to run. Unfortunately even though he was quick that still left him open for attack and he was unable to dodge the snowball that smacked into him right between his shoulder blades. He cursed loudly and dropped down to form another snowball as the fog started to slowly disperse. 

Revealed was Chiho acting out an elaborate death scene, which someone could assume was Oscar worthy based upon Daiki’s tearful response. While Chiho, in a dramatic fashion, told Daiki he will have to go on without her Masato joined the fray carrying a surprising amount of snowballs for someone as small as he was. Satomi split the stack with the little boy and Daiki got up from kneeling next to his sister just in time to start running from the barrage of snowballs thrown his way. The two chased after him while Chiho remained laying on the ground with her tongue flopped out of her mouth and eyes closed in mock death, but she cracked an eye open to see if they were gone so she could start army crawling away to hide behind their snow wall. 

Katsuki couldn’t remain distracted for long though because while he dropped to his knees to make a new snowball Todoroki was doing the same and he couldn’t afford to get hit again. It was do or die now and Katsuki stood up and started running, again in sync with his rival captain. Todoroki launched the snowball in his direction but Katsuki was able to swiftly dodge it before hurling his right at Todoroki’s chest. The projectile hit its mark, leaving them both one away from being out of the game. 

With a yell Katsuki threw himself at the other boy and tackled him to the ground, landing on top of Todoroki as he hit the snow. Todoroki’s hand flew to the side to try to grab some snow but Katsuki quickly grabbed him by the wrists and pinned his arms above his head. The boy under him looked startled for a moment, his eyes flicking to Katsuki’s arms for a second and then back to his face. There was a moment where they were both still, just breathing heavily while Katsuki looked around trying to figure out how to both keep him pinned and also make a snowball to beam him in the face with.

“Katsuki.” Shouto said his name in a breathy voice that had an undertone of something else he couldn’t quite place but still sent tingles down his spine. Katsuki turned to face him again and his breath nearly caught in his throat when he realized just how close they were, faces only inches apart as Katsuki straddled his waist. He knew that their position would probably look indecent to anyone that saw them but in that moment he couldn’t find a reason to care. Todoroki’s hair was messily splayed behind his head with snow caught in it, his lips were parted as his chest rose and fell with each pant, his nose, cheeks and ears were tinted red from the cold, and Katsuki could feel his rapid pulse from his where his thumbs pressed into his wrists. It occurred to him that if Todoroki wanted to he could have probably broken out of Katsuki’s hold by now but instead he remained underneath him looking utterly stunned.

He doesn’t know who leaned in first or why but they were nearly nose to nose when a voice, in a way that was startlingly similar to Katsuki, shouted out, “ Die!

Katsuki screeched like a feral cat and jumped up off of Todoroki to shake out the snow Daiki had shoved down his jacket to avenge his fallen sister. Katsuki was about to grab some snow to throw at Daiki but it occurred to him right then that he was out of the fight which his competitive spirit did not deal with well. Daiki did his best evil laugh but it didn’t last long since with an angry yell Masato jumped onto Daiki’s back with his arm around his cousin’s neck in a chokehold Kastuki had taught him. Masato violently smashed a snowball into Daiki’s face, bringing a grin to Katsuki’s face despite the snow melting beneath his jacket.

Looking back at Todoroki, Katsuki saw the boy had covered his face with his hands and was slowly sinking into the snow around him as it melted from his quirk. Satomi casually walked over and dropped a snowball onto Todoroki’s head before looking at Katsuki and saying, “We win. You owe me an eyebrow piercing.” 

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

Back inside Katsuki made quick work of getting dressed into dry clothes before telling Todoroki to meet him in the kitchen to “deal with the damn cookies.” His family had insisted that they both change after being out in the snow so they didn’t catch a cold but Katsuki knew damn well that it was just their ploy to get him out of his baggy pants. Jokes on them, though, for assuming he only packed one pair. 

He was walking down the hallway towards the staircase when he heard My Chemical Romance blaring from what could only have been phone speakers and noticed a half open door. Curiosity got the best of him and he looked in as he passed but ended up stopping from what he saw.

Satomi was sitting on her bed with a hand mirror held close to her face and quietly cursing to herself as she shakily attempted to reapply her eyeliner. Makeup wipes were scattered around her smeared with the results of her previous attempts to apply her makeup. Katsuki could see the frustration in her from where he leant against the doorway by her knitted brows and the tense slope of her shoulders. For a brief moment he was thrown back to when he first entered middle school and had stolen his mom’s black eyeshadow, applying it around his eyes smudged on with one of his fingers sitting cross-legged on the floor in front of a full length mirror. 

“If you want a straight line you shouldn’t squint your eye like that.” He advised her.

She startled, not realizing someone was watching her, making her streak the eyeliner across the side of her face and instinctively threw the mirror at his head. He caught the projectile with ease despite the fact she hurled it at him with all her strength and he twisted it around in his hand as though he was examining it before holding it up so he could check his teeth.

“You’re such an asshole!” Her hair went from white to red with anger.

“Just offering you advice. You should be thanking me. Especially since I’m about to teach you how to do winged liner like a fuckin’ champ.” She looked surprised for a moment before narrowing her eyes in suspicion. 

“What makes you the expert in eyeliner?”

“I wear it under my mask.” Katsuki decided to leave out any mention of his youth. “Move.”

She hesitantly moved aside, sitting cross-legged on the bed, as Katsuki joined her, mirroring her position to face her. He held out the hand mirror and she took it, seeming more at ease now that she started to see this wasn’t some kind of trick. Growing up around the rest of their relatives had made her wary of mischief, though it rarely came from Katsuki. 

 Katsuki plucked the eyeliner pen from her other hand and replaced it with a makeup wipe which she didn’t hesitate to use to give him a clean slate. Her hair shifted to black, showing she was stressed, which he had seen her with far more often than not recently. He watched her scrub at her eyes roughly and could tell there was far more on her mind than just her eyeliner. 

He gently stilled her hand and she jumped, surprised by the action as if she didn’t even realize what she was doing. Katsuki frowned uncharacteristically softly, eyes narrowing in concern. “You’re going to rub your face off.” 

For a moment she looked like she was going to say something but lost her nerve. Biting her lip she looked back at the mirror and more carefully wiped away the rest of the makeup. “...This okay?”

“‘S fine.” He tilted her head to the correct angle and helped her adjust how she was holding the mirror. “Look down instead of scrunching your eyes closed and watch what I do in the mirror. And don’t fucking move.”  

Satomi nodded and Katsuki gave her his patented ‘what the fuck did I just say’ look that made her hair flash an embaressed orange for just a moment when she remembered to keep her head still. He tilted her head to a good angle for him to work again and then he popped the cap off the eyeliner pen. Normally he had a talent for finishing a winged liner in record time but so Satomi could learn he went slowly as he explained all his tips and tricks. Satomi paid close attention to his technique and even asked questions about certain things she always had trouble with. When he finished her first eye he could feel the appreciation and excitement from Satomi as she admired it in the mirror with a little smile. 

“Alright Paramore, your turn now.” The smile fell from her face as her eyes snapped to him and he could see her panic in them. “Don’t give me that look. If you listened to anything I said you should be able to do the other eye with no fucking problem.” 

He shoved the eyeliner pen into her hand and she looked at it with trepidation before she seemed to gain a new sense of determination. “Yeah, no fucking problem.”

With a much steadier hand than before she took the eyeliner pen from him and started to work on her other eye, routinely checking the one Katsuki did for reference. Her work wasn’t perfect but it was an obvious improvement to what she had before and Katsuki could be proud of that. That didn’t stop him from fixing the eyeliner she did though but at least he was able to show her how to fix her mistakes. She stared at the mirror as though she almost couldn’t believe it was herself staring back at her.

“So, what’s up with this new look anyway?” Katsuki prodded in what he hoped was a subtle tone. 

“What are you, my fucking mom?” Well, there goes subtle with the added bonus of yet another flashback to his middle school days. History was doomed to repeat itself he guessed.

Forgive me if i’m a touch curious why my little cousin went from wearing shirts with horses on them to attempting to steal Billie Joe Armstrong’s look.” He let out an annoyed huff and was about to get up but was stopped by Satomi grabbing his sleeve.

“Wait! I wanted to talk to you it’s just...an automatic reaction at this point.” She looked at him nervously and it set off all his protective instincts.

“Someone giving you shit at school? Fucking say the word and I’ll scare the shit out of them.” He was getting heated just thinking about it but Satomi shook her head as he sat back down. 

“No, I can do that myself when it happens.” Katsuki nodded at her approvingly at that statement. “I was just, um....wondering how you decided to start dating.” 

Katsuki furrowed his eyebrows as he thought over the question, “What do you even mean?”

Her hair turned white, a sign she was scared, and she looked down at her clenched hands before asking in a quiet but steady voice, “How did you know you were gay?”

The question momentarily threw Katsuki for a loop since he didn’t expect it but he was very quick to compose himself. “I mean, when I was a kid I just thought I hated everyone so it wasn’t surprising that the idea of liking a girl was repulsive to me since, you know, the thought of liking anyone was repulsive to me. But then kids would always start their damn rumors and would tell me about different girls thinking I was cute or that they had a crush on me and I fucking hated it. The first time a girl actually admitted she had a crush on me I told her to get out of my school,” his mouth twitched up in a crooked smile, a touch nostalgic as he continued “so there’s a lot to unpack there.”

He softly blew air through his nose in a way that was almost a laugh while Satomi hung off of every word he was saying. “My first crush was a male movie character but don’t ask because I’m taking that information to my fucking grave.”

The absolute last thing he wanted was her to know that his first crush was Kovu the lion from The Lion King 2 when he was just a kid. “Once I was a bit older it wasn’t hard to come to terms with the fact that I was gay but I was worried about what people would think of me.” 

“Were you scared?” 

“‘Course. I know it’s surprising since I don’t give a shit what people think of me now but when I was young I thought I would have to hide I was gay since I was scared it would affect my hero rankings in the future. I also didn’t hang around a very friendly crowd and assumed they wouldn’t respect me anymore. Not to mention I had no idea what my parents would think so really I didn’t hide it so much as I just didn’t talk about it. I hated doing that which only added to my anger. I was angry at people around me, I was angry at my parents, and I was angry at myself ‘cause I felt like a fucking coward. The summer before UA is when I finally snapped when my mom asked me when I was leaving the house if I was going to meet up with some secret girlfriend. Yelling that I’m gay isn’t exactly subtle so I accidentally came out to my dad that day too. From then on it became that if someone had something against me being gay then fine, I can just sucker punch them in the face if I need to.”

He could see she took his words to heart and there was a silent moment where she mulled them over. 

“Katsuki, I think I-” She closed her eyes for a moment and shook her head before opening them again with a new sense of determination. “No...I know I like girls. I know it’s always been that way too I just...I know I shouldn’t be scared about telling the family since I know they will support me but I still get anxious thinking about it.” 

“Well, first of all welcome to the ‘gay cousin’ club,” This startled a small laugh from her and some tension eased from her shoulders. “Second of all you have every right to be scared, it’s nerve wracking, but it’s gonna feel easier each time you tell someone. You shouldn’t feel forced to come out before you’re ready. Like I said before, if anyone has a problem with it you say the fucking word and I’ll make ‘em wish they were never born.” 

The corners of her mouth quirked up at that but that faded away as she bit her lip and messed with the sleeve of her sweater before asking, “And how did you know you had a crush on Shouto?” 

Katsuki faltered at that question, trying to think of some kind of viable answer to that, but instead chose to deflect it with, “What, you got a crush on somebody?” 

Her face quickly flushed in embarrassment and she looked away, spluttering a bit. Seemed like he got it in one. 

“I- um..Well...Maybe?” She started and Katsuki gestured for her to continue. “There is this girl in my history class and she’s just...really really sweet. I don’t know if I’ve ever met someone as nice as her. She’s a bit spacey and doesn’t have the best grades but she always manages to say the right thing...I’ve been helping her study for history class during lunch and she always gives me some kind of fresh made treat she brought from her parents’ bakery as a thank you. I guess I just feel...warm around her? Like I just want to stay there next to her.”

Katsuki watched her talk observing the way her face softened and how her hair started to turn to the color pink, matching the slight blush she still had. He mulled over what she meant about that ‘warm feeling’ but couldn’t exactly figure it out. For a brief moment the memory of Todoroki hugging him to warm him flashed through his mind but he shook away the thought. 

“I’m not the best at emotions and shit but if your hair is anything to go by then you’ve got it pretty bad.” Satomi’s eyes widened and she quickly grabbed the mirror from before. She looked mortified when she saw it’s bubblegum pink state and her hand flew to her hair making Katsuki let out an amused huff. “But seriously, any girl would be lucky to have you and if she doesn’t know that than she really is a complete dumbass.” 

Satomi’s eyes began to water as she quietly croaked out, “Thanks, Katsuki.” 

“You’re gonna ruin that eyeliner I just so painstakingly did for you.” His response didn’t have any bite to it but he still didn’t expect it when the girl threw her arms around his neck to hug him. She sniffled while he lightly patted her back in some lame attempt at comfort but she didn’t seem to mind. 

“Also what business do you have with dating yet anyways you’re like 12.”

“I’m almost 14 so shut the fuck up.”



»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

After their talk Satomi seemed more at ease even though she was about to have to deal with the kids slinging around colorful icing and candies to make their gingerbread men. He was about to walk into the kitchen when he collided with another body nearly making him stumble. He was steadied by an arm around his waist and Katsuki met Todoroki’s concerned gaze. Part of Katsuki found the position rather comfortable, which caught him off guard. 

“Are you alright?” 

“Why wouldn’t I be.” Katsuki snapped and maneuvered himself out of Todoroki’s hold and into the kitchen. 

Todoroki didn’t seem fazed and simply watched Katsuki curiously as he got out the ingredients for the icing. “You just took a long time. I was about to check on you.”

“What are you? A fucking cop?” Katsuki responded automatically, now getting out the cookie dough as well. 

“I can’t be concerned with my boyfriend’s wellbeing?” Todoroki raised an eyebrow at him in a way that made it seem like he could be issuing a challenge. 

“Yeah well if I trip while putting on my pants and crack my head open on a dresser you’ll be the first person I call.” Katsuki’s voice was dripping with sarcasm but Todoroki didn’t seem off put by that in the slightest. “I know you’re shit at cooking but are you any good at baking?”

“I don’t know, I haven’t really tried before,” He furrowed his brows in concentration as though he was trying to remember. “My brother... he taught me how to make trash s'mores but that’s it.” 

“Trash s’mores?”

Todoroki gave him a mildly confused look as though he should already know what a ‘trash s’more’ was. “Yeah. He showed me how to roast the marshmallow in my hand. Then all you have to do is add chocolate syrup and a potato chip on top. He called them trash s’mores.” 

He stared at him dumbfoundedly for a moment before saying, “Did you just eat it out of your fucking hand ?” 

“How else would I? It would always get stuck to my hand.” 

“Ok well first off that’s not baking. Secondly, how are you even alive?”

Todoroki simply shrugged in response and Katsuki made a mental note to keep an eye on what the other boy was eating so he didn’t perish from malnutrition. He also tried to remember any mention of one of Shouto’s siblings having a fire related quirk. 

“Alright, can you at least mix something in a bowl?” Katsuki asked as he placed a large bowl in front of Todoroki. 

Todoroki let out an amused huff. “I think I can manage.” 

In the end, Todoroki for the most part did manage his job with just about the amount of confectioner’s sugar spillage as Katsuki expected. That being said, the counter now had a dusting of powdered sugar across the surface and Todoroki looked at it with his eyebrows furrowed as though he was trying to piece together where he could have possibly gone wrong. Satomi and Airi had taken the cookie dough from Katsuki and were currently helping the kids cut out the gingerbread man shapes for Katsuki to bake. Masato kept adding extra little things to the forms that made Katsuki wonder what his creative vision was for the cookies. 

Airi lifted a tray of cookies up into the air and yelled over the chattering kids to Katsuki to tell him they were ready for the oven. Normally, Airi would be jumping at the chance to be drinking with the adults and Katsuki gave her a suspicious look trying to figure out exactly what her game here was. She kept an innocent look and thanked Katsuki when he took the cookies only leading him to be even more suspicious. 

After popping the cookies in the oven, Katsuki went and helped Todoroki as he struggled to split up the batch of royal icing evenly like Katsuki asked him to. Once that was done all they had to do was color the icing for the decorations. Normally this would be a simple task if it weren’t for the fact Katsuki had to keep stopping Todoroki from sneaking tastes of the frosting. 

Katsuki couldn’t put his finger on what the cause was but something about the whole situation just felt...nice. There was a warm homey atmosphere that made him feel strangely relaxed even though the kids were loudly fighting over how many cookies they each got to decorate. He also would normally be annoyed by Todoroki’s poor culinary skills but he found he didn’t mind helping him. It was kind of endearing to see the boy actually need help with something.  

By the time they placed the colorful icing on the table and the different candies for decorating, the first batch of cookies was finished baking. Luckily it only took about ten minutes for the gingerbread men to bake because otherwise the kids would no doubt eat the candy before having the chance to decorate. Katsuki got the cookies out of the oven, since he forbade anyone else in the room from doing it, and set them on the cooling racks where Todoroki was able to cool them with a wave of his hand. The kids cheered and started to grab cookies while Airi complimented Todoroki on the use of his quirk which was met with a confused tilt of the head from Shouto and a scowl from a hovering Katsuki. 

Now that Satomi, Airi, and the children were busy decorating Katsuki took over shaping the gingerbread dough into more cookies to bake. Todoroki was quick to offer to help him and Katsuki agreed before he even realized what he was saying. He couldn’t refuse though when he saw the excited shine in Shouto’s eyes. After Todoroki messed up the first couple of cookies he tried to form, Katsuki reached over to help him with the one he was currently struggling with. His hands brushed against Todoroki’s and he couldn’t help thinking about how soft his hands were compared to his own calloused ones. 

“Tododoki! Look what I made!” Masato was grinning and proudly holding up a gingerbread man with red and white icing on the head and two mini m&ms for eyes that were brown and blue. The rest of the cookie was smeared with blue icing with white splattered about and Katsuki realized that was meant to be Todoroki’s hero suit. 

“You really got my eyes right. They look delicious.” Todoroki complimented him and the little boy nearly started vibrating in happiness. 

“I made one of Katsuki too!” Masato held up another cookie next to the other one. The cookie had bright yellow icing all over the head which Katsuki assumed was his hair and the body was slathered with black and orange icing. The most distinguishing thing about it was the wide black circle for a mouth and the dripping red icing of the eyes that made it look less like Katsuki and more like a melting nightmarish demon screaming in agony. 

“He’s perfect.” Todoroki said deadpan and Katsuki elbowed him in the side but it lacked any real force. Meanwhile, Masato was practically glowing from the statement and set to work making another gingerbread man. He poured globs of red icing onto it leading Katsuki to believe that the little boy was creating a murder scene until he spotted all the other cookies he had made. The cookies of himself and Todoroki were placed amongst cookies of different pro heroes and Katsuki realized that Masato’s creation must have been Hawks with his giant red wings. 

“Hey! Put Gerard back!” Satomi reached across the table hastily, almost knocking several jars of candy over in the process, to grab at a gingerbread man Daiki was about to put into his mouth. Daiki raised his arm trying to keep it away from her but she managed to pluck it out of his hand, ignoring his complaints. Satomi’s gingerbread men were far more legible than Masato’s and based on the name she said it wasn’t hard to deduce her cookie was meant to be Gerard Way. Apparently everyone was making cookies of their favorite people, at least judging by Chiho’s gingerbread men of various 80’s slasher film characters. 

Katsuki grabbed two trays to switch with the cookies in the oven when he noticed one was oddly shaped. “What the fuck is that? An octopus?”

“It’s a cat.” Shouto explained with a slight tone of disappointment likely about Katsuki being unable to tell what it was. “I messed up one of the gingerbread men so I made it into a cat.”

“You could have just put it with the extra dough to roll out again.” Katsuki said with a look to the small pile of cookie dough scraps. 

“Oh...I’ll just do that I guess.” Todoroki reached for the gingerbread ‘cat’ but Katsuki moved the tray out of his reach.

“It’s fine. We’ll just put it with the shitty cookies to get eaten first.” With that compromise Todoroki seemed oddly more proud of his creation even though Katsuki called it shitty. 

Katsuki weaved around the other boy and walked to the other side of the large kitchen where the nice convection oven was. He placed the unbaked cookies to the side so he could deal with the now perfectly done cookies. Really he should probably use a timer when baking but he always managed to keep track of the time in his head and so far it hadn’t steered him wrong. He put the other trays into the oven but took a moment to look at the cookie Todoroki had called a cat. It really wasn’t at all well done but for some reason he felt himself begin to smile when looking at it. 

“He’s hopeless.” He quietly said to himself as he shoved the final tray into the oven. He was about to pick up the piping hot gingerbread men to bring to Todoroki to cool down but he heard Airi speak up. 

“Hey, Shouto,” She said in a sing-song voice with a mischievous grin on her face. “Take a look at where you’re standing.”

Katsuki looked over and saw Todoroki had moved from where he was working on the cookies to grab a hand towel to clean the flour off of his hands. He was looking around confused as to what Airi meant but Katsuki followed Airi’s gaze upwards to where a sprig of mistletoe was hanging from a ceiling fan. Airi then caught Katsuki’s gaze and her smile widened before she moved to get up.

So that was her game then.

Katsuki moved before he could even think about it as Airi made her way to the other side of the table in an attempt to get to Todoroki. It almost felt like the moment could be in slow motion. Katsuki slid to a stop in front of Todoroki before Airi could even get near him meanwhile Todoroki still looked like he didn’t know what was going on at all.

“Katsuki, what-”

He cut Todoroki off by grabbing him by the back of the neck and pulling the surprised boy down to crash their lips together into what Katsuki would always remember as his first kiss. 

For a second Shouto was stock still against him and Katsuki was about to pull away until suddenly he placed his hands on Katsuki’s hips to bring their bodies closer together. Todoroki tilted his head a bit to the side and suddenly the awkward kiss turned into something that felt amazingly pleasant. Shouto’s lips were soft against his own and tasted sweet in a way that must have been from all the icing the boy had snuck for himself. It took everything for Katsuki to restrain himself from getting a better taste of it. Feeling pent up he played with the hair at the nape of Shouto’s neck for something to do with his hands which elicited a shiver from the boy. 

The shiver pulled Katsuki back to reality and he broke off the kiss, not knowing how long it had even lasted. Katsuki wasn’t sure but he could have sworn that when he pulled back Shouto’s lips had chased his for a moment, but it was too quick for his fuzzy brain to parce. He moved his hands from the back of his neck to his chest, still held close, and finally looked at Todoroki’s face. He seemed as though he was in a daze as he stared at Katsuki with an inexplicable look of awe. It was a look Katsuki almost felt like he could get used to. A look that made him feel like the only one in the room.

But of course he wasn’t.

“Well that was rude.” Airi complained as she leaned against the counter with a disappointed pout on her face.

Katsuki spluttered incoherently for a second before saying, “ Rude? Stopping you from kissing my boyfriend is rude?” 

“Well yeah you get to kiss him whenever you want! Sharing is caring.” Airi explained as though that was a normal thing to say. “Now I set up that mistletoe for nothing. It didn't even look like a good kiss, do you rush everything you do?"

“Mistletoe?” Todoroki finally spoke, his voice a bit breathy, and he looked up. The confusion melted off his face and he simply let out an, “Oh…” 

“If you guys are done being gross we still have a ton of gingerbread to finish and could use some help.” Satomi didn’t even look up from the cookie she was concentrated on as she said this. 

“Well, you guys have fun with that. Time for me to see if I can convince Aunt Mineko to pop open the good white wine.” Airi went to skip out of the room but Katsuki wiggled his way out of the hold Todoroki had on him so he could grab her by the back of her collar. 

“I think the fuck not! You’re gonna sit down and finish what you started.” Katsuki shoved her into a chair in front of a plate of undecorated cookies and she pouted again.

“Oh also I made some cookies for you, Kat.” Satomi said deadpan and held up two gingerbread men that looked like him and Todoroki with little kissy faces that she held up in a way that made it look like they were about to kiss. Katsuki growled and simply snatched the cookies out of her hands and bit the heads off of both of them at the same time. 

“Kinky.” Airi said with a wink and Katsuki chucked the little cookies’ bodies at her face.

 

»»————- ✼ ————-««

 

It was around ten at night and Katsuki could not stop pacing.

Both he and Todoroki were ready for bed, the other boy laying against the pillows idly scrolling through his phone while Katsuki just couldn’t stop thinking. Something Katsuki prided himself on was being good at things, in fact he always was the best at things. So why did Airi say that it didn’t look like a good kiss? To him it felt good, it felt more than good, so could he possibly be a bad kisser? He hadn’t actually kissed someone before, being too focused on everything else to have any romance in his life, but he still found that the small comment annoyed him to no end.

“It's rare for you to still be awake at this time, let alone so angry." Todoroki spoke, barely looking up from his phone.

“Shut up!” He snapped but instantly regretted it when he saw Todoroki nearly retreat into himself. He let out a heavy sigh and flopped onto the bed face first into the pillow. “No, I mean... was that a bad kiss? I've never kissed anyone. Is Airi going to figure it out and say something?”

“Your cousin just wanted to kiss me, I don't think she meant anything by it.” Todoroki responded and finally put his phone onto the nightstand, completely focused on him.

“You didn't answer my first question, was it bad?” Anxiety seeped into him and he tried his best to fight it off.

“I mean… I’ve had better?”

Katsuki turned his face out of the pillow and growled out, “Who the fuck have you kissed before?!”

Todoroki shrugged. “Momo, when we were trying to figure out if we were gay. She had a crush on Jirou and I... It doesn’t matter, but we figured it out.”

“Fucking...show me how to do it right then.”

His words hung in the air for a moment and Katsuki nearly stopped breathing when Todoroki shifted his position in the bed to be facing him and reached out his hand to cup his jaw and run his finger across his lower lip.

“Is that what you want?” He breathed out.

“Yes.”

The next thing he knew he was kissing Shouto and god did it feel right. He had pulled him into the kiss by moving his hand into his hair and Katsuki couldn’t help but gasp at the sudden sensation before his mouth was otherwise occupied. There was something so shockingly tender about it that Katsuki leaned into it in a desperate way he never expected from himself. Todoroki let out a surprised noise through his nose but didn’t object, instead deepening the kiss. Katsuki didn’t mind in the slightest, though, he found himself wanting more

It wasn’t long before Katsuki felt the strain in his neck from the position they were sitting in. Pulling away with a with a wet noise that made the hair on the back of his neck stand up, he murmured,“This isn’t comfortable.” Shouto looked at him with a dazed sort of disappointment that morphed into surprise as Katsuki maneuvered him to sit back on the mattress, slinging a leg over him to straddle his hips. 

Katsuki leaned down, hovering close enough for Shouto to feel him speak against his lips and finally said, "Am I a better kisser than that fucking bookworm?”

“Yeah.” Shouto said breathily before Katsuki dived right back in wanting nothing but to be the best he’d ever had. It must’ve been just a touch overzealous because he felt their teeth clack, someone’s lip caught between the impact lending a taste of rust to the kiss. His hand clutched the fabric of Todoroki’s sleep shirt far too tightly as he put his all into kissing him, and Shouto raised a hand to gently caress his own.

Todoroki pulled back just far enough to speak. “Relax.” Was all he said while rubbing his thumb across his knuckles and Katsuki listened, melting against him as he brought their mouths back together. Emboldened by the so far positive response, Katsuki brought Shouto’s lower lip between his own, nibbling lightly and relishing in the sharp huff of surprise he earned in response.

Melding his body against Shouto’s as they kissed was pure euphoria and upon untangling his grip from the front of his shirt Katsuki found himself unable to resist letting his hands roam along the skin just beneath the rumpled hem. The little tease he got of those defined abs nearly had him demanding Todoroki take it off, or skipping that altogether and just ripping it off himself. 

Without warning, Shouto tangled his fingers in his hair and pulled it in a way that was so irresistible Katsuki moaned into his mouth and promptly froze  in horror at the sound that had escaped him. 

Katsuki pulled away as quickly as he could, scarlet creeping from the tips of his ears steadily down his neck. “I-”

“It’s fine. Its okay-” Todoroki started to assure him but Katsuki would have none of it.

“I’m going to bed.” The statement was loud and sudden and Katsuki rolled off of Todoroki, wrapping himself safely in the blanket and shuffling to the extreme edge of the mattress before shutting off the lamp next to him. 

“Katsuki-”

“Shut up! I’m asleep.” Katsuki said with his heart in his throat and his face buried in the pillow. Shouto said nothing and simply turned off his own bedside light with a sigh. 

Katsuki squeezed his eyes shut and tried to calm his pounding heart.

Embarrassing himself was one thing. But with his palms sweating and the anxiety rapidly swelling, there was a much more pressing matter.

Fuck. He had feelings, didn’t he?



Chapter Text

Todoroki POV

 

Shouto jerked awake in a panic, breathing in rapid heaves as his heart raced like a hummingbird’s, from the vivid nightmare he had just pulled himself out of. He swallowed around the lump in his throat and willed himself to take a deep breath in an attempt to calm the pulse roaring in his ears. This wasn’t the first time he had woken up like this, nor did he believe it would be the last, but that didn’t make it any easier to pull himself out of the panic that clutched him so tightly. What did come easily was keeping himself quiet during these times. As a young boy, he would wake in the midst of a nightmare of this caliber screaming but it only served to make his father angry, claiming that he was weak for being afraid of something that wasn’t even real - as though the subjects of his nightmares weren’t a cruel part of his reality. Shouto, alone in the dark, learned how to keep himself to nothing but quiet wheezy gasps to keep his father from overhearing not only for his sake but for his mother’s as well. 

The nightmare was the same as it usually was, a blurred cacophony of the horrors of his past shuttering by like an old film reel. The form of his mother, curled small and wracked with sobs. The image of his father standing tall looking down at him with distaste. The sound of a tea kettle, his missing brother screaming as he was forced to burst into flames again and again and again, his nails scraping down the wood of the training room floor as he clutched his stomach- 

Shouto shuddered, taking in another unsteady breath as he willed his nightmare back into his subconscious. When he moved to lift his hand to wipe the sweat from his brow he found, much to his surprise, that his arm was held down by Bakugou who was clinging tightly to the limb. The blond boy let out a soft grunt of protest when he tried to shift and buried his face further into Shouto’s bicep. A wave of awe overtook him when Katsuki made a content huff as though he was exactly where he wanted to be. Shouto felt his throat constrict in a different way from the clawing panic of his nightmare at the sight of Katsuki’s sleeping face; even if it was something he had seen before it never ceased to amaze him how soft the boy looked in moments like this. The annoyed expression he usually held was no longer present, his face smoothed into a relaxed state that highlighted his surprisingly sweet looking features from his button nose to his slightly parted pink lips. 

Shouto realized he had raised the hand that Katsuki wasn’t latched onto forward to touch him and stopped himself, letting it fall down to rest on his own chest. 

When he had volunteered to be Bakugou’s fake boyfriend he had no idea how torturous it would be to be so close to what he couldn’t actually have. The most painful moments were the ones where he almost forgot that what they had right now wasn’t real, chest feeling full to bursting with the affections he held for the other only to feel hollowed out the next moment when Katsuki brought up once again that it was all an act. Still, if he could go back to when this first started he wouldn’t change a thing. The time he spent with the boy was well worth whatever Shouto would feel once this arrangement was over. 

When he had heard Bakugou’s situation that early morning in the kitchen he hadn’t planned on offering his ‘services’, but when he heard Kaminari and Kirishima bring up the idea of a fake boyfriend Shouto found himself speaking before he could stop himself. There were a lot of reasons that contributed to his decision from the lack of filter he had when tired to the slight flare of jealousy when he heard Kirishima and Kaminari discussing who could be Bakugou’s ‘boyfriend’. What it really came down to though was that he’d harbored feelings for the boy sleeping next to him since their second year and many scenarios of what it would be like to be in a relationship with him had passed through his mind during that time. So, when given both the chance to possibly find out simple things, like what it would feel like hold Katsuki’s hand or see his real smile be directed at him, Shouto didn’t hesitate to step forward for the ‘job.’ The realization that he could also get away from his father for the holidays only served to make him think it was an even better idea, although he hadn’t exactly planned on sharing that bit of information the way he did.

That’s how Momo ended up finding Shouto lost in thought in front of the common room fireplace, staring at the dancing flames.

“Good morning, Shouto.” She greeted him but paused, looking him over for a moment and realizing near-instantly that something was off. “What’s wrong?” 

He knew from the hardened tone she used that she must have immediately suspected that something must have happened with his father. Shouto quickly looked up and shook his head to lay that thought to rest. “Nothing. I think.”

“You think… So, that means it's something that could go wrong?” There was nothing pushy about Momo’s tone, it was more as though she was gently coaxing him to explain. Over their years of friendship, she had become quite good at patiently getting him to talk about what was on his mind, which was something that had never come easily for him. 

“Possibly.” Shouto bit his lip as he mulled over what to say for a moment. “I’m spending the break with Bakugou to trick his family into thinking he has a boyfriend.”

That seemed to shock Momo out of the strategic planning mode she had been in since she suddenly choked on the tea she had been sipping at. Shouto made his way over to her, mild worry showing on his face, and awkwardly patted her back in some kind of attempt to help as she coughed and spluttered. 

“You what ?” She croaked out once she regained her composure.

“He needed someone to pretend to be his boyfriend for a week so I... volunteered.”

She took a moment to digest what he said before asking, “So, you’ll be alone with him for an entire week?”

“Him and his family.” 

“His family?”

“I don’t know much, just that he has a large family reunion.”

“Do you think you’ll be able to handle that?” It was an honest question, she had known him long enough to be aware that Shouto was easily overwhelmed when he was exposed to large groups of people he didn’t know.

“I think it’s better than my other option of going home.” At his response, she nodded in understanding.

“But is that the only reason you’re doing this?” He averted his gaze and that was all the answer she needed. “You still have feelings for him.”

He swallowed nervously before breathing a sigh out of his nose and quietly admitting, “Yes.”

“Alright then...we have a lot of work to do.” 

His head tilted in confusion as he looked back up at her as she finished typing something on her phone before stuffing it into her pocket. Any question he was about to ask was cut off as she grabbed him by the sleeve and pulled him along with her out of the common room. 

She shoved him into the elevator, pressing the button for the fifth floor, before asking, “When are you leaving?”

She had the confident air to her voice that he recognized meant she had a plan she was ready to execute. “At five tonight.” 

She made a contemplative hum as she glanced at her phone once more, already doing mental calculations. “You’re not giving us a lot of time to work with.” 

“Us?”

Right as he asked, the elevator doors opened to the second floor and Izuku ran in with such speed that he skidded across the floor into the wall with a squeak. Shouto let out a short amused huff that had the green-haired boy ignored as he looked up at the two of them, an expression of relief washing over his face.

“Yaoyorozu! I got your text and headed up as soon as I could! What’s the emergency?” There was a worried tinge to his voice but everything about his stance said that the boy was prepared for a fight despite the fact that he was in a too-long pair of pajama pants and faded graphic tee.

Momo winced when she realized her mistake, “Sorry, I should have been more specific. It’s not that kind of emergency, I need you to help me prepare Shouto for the holidays.”

Izuku lowered his fists, his brows knotting in confusion, but before he could ask for details Shouto spoke up to defend himself. “If this is about staying with his family I’m not that bad at dealing with people-”

“This isn’t people this is Bakugou we are talking about. You need all the help you can get.”

“Kacchan? He’s involved in this ‘emergency’? What’s going on? What does that have to Shouto’s holiday break?” Shouto could nearly see the cogs turning in Izuku’s head as he tried to piece this all together. 

“Shouto has to be Bakugou’s pretend boyfriend for a week and we’re going to teach him how to use this opportunity to sweep that boy off his feet.” She declared with a sense of conviction. 

Izuku’s jaw dropped momentarily and then snapped closed as he visibly underwent several stages of shock. Shouto was in a similar state but wasn’t as outwardly stricken as Izuku who was currently frozen as though he was rebooting. He was released from his trance by the ding of the elevator as they arrived on the fifth floor.

“Alright, I have a plan,” Izuku stated resolutely, Momo nodding her head in approval, before walking out of the elevator with Momo tugging Shouto along not that far behind.  They were already conferring with each other, ignoring Shouto as he tried to speak up and get their attention.

“Wait-”

“He has to dress really well, they are all fashion critics-”

“No problem, I can go through his closet and take care of that. I worked with his aunt’s modeling agency when I Interned for Uwabami.”

“Just stop-”

“He could impress the family by playing the piano if they have one. Shouto and I had the same piano teacher, I could ask her to email Shouto some sheet music of Christmas songs.”

“Yes! Great idea! I wish we also had enough time to teach Shouto how to cook-”

“No one has enough time for that-”

“Guys!” The two fell quiet at Shouto’s raised voice and looked back at him from where he had yanked his hand from Momo’s grasp. “It won’t work.”

“What do you-” Izuku started but Shouto cut him off.

“There is no ‘sweeping him off his feet’. The ‘plan’ won’t work. Bakugou doesn’t feel that way about me and I’ve accepted that... I can live with it. We’ve only just gotten to a point where we could almost be friends, I don't... I don’t want to mess that up. If its the only way to have him in my life then that’s enough.”

“Shouto-” Momo was ready to protest but Shouto stopped her with a shake of his head.

“I can’t... I don’t want to go and trick him into some kind of relationship with me-”

“No,” Izuku immediately cut him off with a tone that left no room for debate which left Shouto speechless for a moment. “Flirting with someone you like isn’t ‘tricking’ them. Yes, this is a weird circumstance but I know for a fact that you would never take advantage of Kacchan. First of all, you care about him too much but also you are a good person . Not to mention that there is no way he would allow you to, Kacchan can sniff out bad intentions from a mile away. You’re doing him a favor, not acting out some dastardly plan.”

Leave it to Izuku to hit the nail on the head. Through his life, Shouto hadn’t seen many good relationships. Of course, now he could see it in the couples around him like Aizawa and Present Mic as well as Momo and Jirou but growing up the only thing he had ever seen was his mother’s unhappiness from the marriage forced upon her by his father. Deep down an underlying fear had settled in him that one day he could cause his future partner to be just as miserable. The last thing he would want is for Bakugou to feel trapped by him due to Shouto’s feelings being forced upon him during this week they had to spend together. 

Izuku stepped forward and put a gentle but reassuring hand on Shouto’s shoulder. “I also think you might be selling yourself a bit short. It feels like every time I look at Kacchan he’s finding some way to get your attention. If looks could kill that girl that tried to ask you out at lunch the other day probably would have caught fire from the glare he gave her.”

Shouto gave him a confused look, “That girl from 2B? She was just being nice.”

Momo giggled and tried to cover it with her hand as she gently corrected her friend. “She was hitting on you, Shouto. You’re just too oblivious and head over heels for someone else to notice.”

Shouto could feel his face flush a bit at that which of course didn’t get past two of the most observant students in his class. Luckily for him, they were both kind enough to spare him from any jabs.  

“I’ve known Kacchan for a long time and, even though sometimes it doesn’t seem like it, he is my friend.” Izuku returned to a serious tone. “If I’ve learned anything about him over these years it’s that he has a difficult time processing emotions. He needs someone who is going to be patient with him as he figures things out. You’re someone I trust to do that and honestly... I think that Kacchan feels something for you. He just doesn’t know what it is yet.”

Shouto looked at him in surprise, unable to find words, and Momo took the opportunity to speak. “I know you’re stubborn and will probably deny that Bakugou likes you back, even though I’m sure we’re right, but at least give us the chance to try to help you. I really think it could work out... and I also owe you big time after you helped me with Kyouka.”

Shouto looked down and chewed on his bottom lip as he stood there in the middle of the hall thinking over what they both had said. It was hard not to let a traitorous shred of hope slip into his heart when his friends said these things with such certainty that he could almost believe them. 

“You deserve to be happy.” Momo’s voice held such sincerity Shouto felt the last of his resolve crumble.  

Shouto gave a small nod resulting in grins from Momo and Izuku that were far too enthusiastic for his liking but it was too late for him to stop them. The two pulled Shouto into his room and set to work, the mood shifting into something much more serious as though they were preparing him to go off to war rather than on vacation. Momo rifled through his closet in search of clothes for Shouto to wear for the next week, often gravitating towards things Fuyumi had bought for him. She even pulled out a well worn black turtleneck and demanded that he changed into it before he left. 

Midoriya, having known Bakugou since childhood, attempted to coach him about his likes and dislikes, although he more so spoke of the latter. Most of what he included were things that Shouto had actually already observed which made Midoriya and Momo share a smile he couldn’t quite understand. Bakugou was always very vocal with his opinions; why wouldn’t he know these things?

Before sending him off later in the day to meet up with Katsuki, Momo created a group chat as a tool for Shouto if he ever felt tripped up about what to do. She also included Tenya and Ochako in the group after giving them the low down on the situation at hand. This resulted in an onslaught of texts about romantic hypotheticals from Ochako that seemed vastly unlikely. He also received a powerpoint on manners made by Tenya himself which Shouto wasn’t sure if he should feel offended about or grateful for - until later when he pulled it up in the bathroom after he froze Katsuki’s cousin’s drink to the table the first night he was there.

To say that Katsuki’s family was unexpected would be an understatement. Between Katsuki’s incessant warnings and the limited information Izuku was able to provide him Shouto was prepared to approach this meeting as a battle in itself. So, needless to say, he was caught off guard when the family excitedly welcomed him with open arms. The sudden onslaught of affection was jarring, to say the least, and Shouto was grateful when Katsuki fought to give him some space. 

Watching them all interact was something Shouto couldn't help but find fascinating, having never seen a family act so openly with each other. Each person was unapologetically themselves and right when he thought they were fed up with each other someone would do something that would prove just how unconditional their love for each other was. It was something Shouto never expected to experience himself but without even realizing it the family had effortlessly pulled him in. He couldn’t shake the feeling that there had to be a catch, like at any moment he could mess up and the illusion would break, but they never stopped making him feel like he was a part of their noisy little universe. In his weakest moments, Shouto felt as though it could be real.

But it wasn’t.

At the end of the week, he and Bakugou would go back to their normal lives as though this never happened and to the family they will have broken up. Surely they would hate Shouto after that. He was just making it harder for himself by getting attached this quickly.

Shouto didn't confer with his friends as much as they would have liked him to, judging by the onslaught of messages he received from them daily, but at the end of the day, he at least updated them on the events that transpired. He distantly remembered that with all that occurred last night he had forgotten to send them anything meaning he probably had a barrage of questions waiting for him. He vaguely wondered what they would think of what transpired but Shouto couldn’t find it in himself to care as he got lost in the memory of the kiss. 

Katsuki would have probably run the other way if he knew just how long Shouto had wanted to do that. 

Shouto had always pictured kissing Bakugou would be aggressive and rough, like everything else about him, but when Katsuki kissed him Shouto found himself breathless, utterly starstruck by the shocking amount of tenderness the other boy was able to pour into the action. It was a feeling Shouto could see himself quickly becoming addicted to, if given the chance. Katsuki had Shouto absolutely wrapped around his finger and in the moment Shouto agreed to teach him how to kiss he truly would have agreed to anything the blond could’ve asked of him. Reminiscing upon the feeling of Katsuki’s calloused hands wandering against his skin and the solid yet comfortable weight on top of him while they had kissed, Shouto could feel himself falling deeper and deeper for the boy to a place he knew he couldn’t come back from. Despite the seeming inevitability of it, he found himself alarmed by the intensity of the emotions that took hold deep in his chest. Still, if he could go back he knew there was nothing he would change. 

Shouto tried to swallow the lump that was forming in his throat at the memory but realized just how dry his mouth was. As regretful as it was to have to leave the position he was in, he knew he had to get up and clear his mind after waking up from a nightmare like that. He gently untangled himself from Bakugou, easing the boy’s grip on him by running his free hand through his fluffy blond hair which made Bakugou relax near instantly. That didn’t stop Katsuki from making a whine in his sleep and rolling face down into the warm spot on the bed Shouto had left behind, however, hair plastered to one side of his head from where it had rested against him. A soft chuckle escaped Shouto’s lips before he could stop it but luckily it seemed to do nothing to stir the other boy. How could someone so irreparably grumpy and terrifying also be so fucking cute?

Shouto silently left the room, carefully closing the door behind him as not to wake Katsuki, and tread carefully down the hall in an attempt to not disturb any of the other sleepers behind the rows of shut doors. Delicately draped garland adorned the walls with soft white Christmas lights, providing Shouto with just enough visibility to find his way to the stairs. When he first arrived Shouto had been enamored with the Christmas decorations, it was a sight he wasn’t used to seeing during the holidays. 

It felt almost strange to walk through the large house at night after he had become so accustomed to the loud and rambunctious family that currently occupied it. The silence eerily felt like the norm for home he had left behind. At least when it wasn’t filled with the booming demanding voice of his father. Shouto shook his head as memories of his nightmare clawed at the outskirts of his mind. Keeping to the edge of the staircase to keep the wood from creaking beneath him, he made his way to the kitchen. 

It took a couple of tries to find the cabinet that held the glassware but once he did Shouto grabbed a cup and filled it with water at the fridge. He felt himself let out an involuntary shiver and realized he strangely felt cold, despite his quirk, now that he didn’t have Katsuki’s warm body against his. 

He downed the glass of water in mere seconds before going to get more in an attempt to get rid of the dry itch at the back of his throat. He was sipping at the second glass while staring out the kitchen window when the sound of a floorboard creaking caused him to jolt and turn around with a soft but alarmed ‘Oh’.

“Sorry, it’s just me.” Katsuki’s father, Masaru, stood mid-step into the kitchen with his hands up in front of him as though to say he didn’t mean any harm. “Are you alright?”

Shouto followed his gaze and realized that the water in the glass had frozen mid-spill and, embarrassed, he quickly placed it in the sink as though he wasn’t holding it in the first place. With a stiff nod, Shouto said, “I’m fine. Sorry if I woke you. I’ll leave.”

He went to make his swift exit but he was stopped by Masaru actually walking into the room with a shake of his head. “No, no. It’s fine, I always get up this early. I’m usually the first one awake, actually. Please, sit down. I was about to make some tea. Are you sure you’re alright?” 

 “I’m-” Shouto was ready to once again deny that anything was wrong, despite his raised heart rate, but barely registering what he was doing he sat down in the chair at the kitchen island Masaru had gestured to. “It’s just some sleep trouble. I’ll be alright.” 

“Does that happen often?” He asked as the tea kettle filled with water. 

“Time to time.” He said as though he didn’t usually sleep restlessly. “It’s been... easier recently, though.” 

The nights he spent here with Katsuki he had slept better than he had and months. Judging by the small smile his face, Masaru seemed to pick up on exactly what he meant. “I see.”

Shouto’s gaze followed the tea kettle as Katsuki’s father placed it onto the stovetop, flicking on the heat. “Could you leave the spout open?”

Masaru seemed slightly surprised by his strange request but complied nonetheless. Shouto felt a small amount of tension in his shoulders ease once he knew he didn't have to deal with the loud whistle the kettle would release. Masaru didn’t ask him why and instead moved on to say, “You know, the first time I met Mitsuki’s family was during the holidays, too.”

Shouto looked up from his own fidgeting hands with interest as Masaru sat down across from him to continue his story. “My mother died when I was young so when I was growing up it was only really just me and my dad. I didn’t know what to expect when Mitsuki told me she wanted me to meet her family, the only warning she gave me was to tell her if one of her sisters hit on me so she could ‘beat the shit out of them.’ As much as she tried to hide it I knew family was important to her and I was terrified about making a bad impression so I went as far as hand-tailoring my own suit for the occasion, which she made fun of me for endlessly. Imagine my surprise when they treated me like a part of the family as soon as I walked through the door.”

“Why are you telling me all this?” As soon as the words came out of his mouth Shouto realized how that sounded. “Wait, I didn’t mean it like-” 

Shouto was interrupted by Masaru’s sudden, quiet laughter before the man stood up to go prepare the tea. “Sorry, I don’t mean to laugh. I know what you meant. I just wanted you to know that you aren’t alone in this experience and that you can always come to me for advice or support.” 

Shouto was blindsided by the unexpected response and the honest consideration for him that was in the man’s tone. It was a type of concern he still wasn’t used to and because of this he felt an unnamed emotion wash over him. “Thank you…” 

They fell into a comfortable silence while Masaru steeped the tea Shouto recognized as one of Momo’s preferred brands of chamomile. He set down a mug in front of Shouto that read ‘Beaches Be Crazy’ with a palm tree and the name of some tropical place he guessed Katsuki’s Aunt Mineko had been to. Shouto poured what was most certainly too much sugar into his tea before taking a sip and cradling the mug in his hands as Masaru sat across from him again to begin working on his own cup of tea.

“Were they ever... too much? For you?” Shouto finally spoke up.

“Of course. I think it’s like that for any family.” He replied easily. “No matter how much you love certain people everyone needs a break from time to time to be alone. I think sometimes the family forgets sometimes that not everyone is used to such a large and loud group of people so don’t be afraid to sneak away for a moment to recharge. I know I have to do that a few times a day during the holidays.”

“They don’t notice you’re gone?”

“There is too much happening at any given time for anyone but Mitsuki to notice. I usually just let her know I need a breather. Also, if you ever need someone to cover for you just ask my dad. He’s great at causing a distraction, which is fine when it's not him faking a heart attack.”

They fell into an easy rhythm of conversation where Shouto asked questions about different things and family members while Masaru gave him helpful and well thought out advice. Never did Shouto feel like he was being talked down to, or questioned on his lack of experience with people and instead Marasu would meet him halfway by trying to show that he knew where he was coming from. Shouto briefly wondered if this is what having a dad normally felt like or if Katsuki was simply one of the lucky ones. He came to the conclusion that it must be a bit of both. 

The conversation lulled back into an easy silence as the two of them finished their tea. Masaru was cleaning the mugs in the sink when Shouto finally spoke up again.

“I’m in love with your son,” Shouto admitted so suddenly that he surprised himself, yet Masaru seemed unfazed.

“I hoped that was the case.” He said with a soft smile. 

“I just want him to be happy.” Now that Shouto had started to unload these things he couldn’t stop and he felt lighter as he did so. “I want to protect him, and I know he would complain that he can protect himself if he heard that, but it’s true. I want to keep him safe.”

“I’m glad I can trust you with that,” Masaru said seriously. “I don’t think there would be anyone better for that job.” 

“Why?”

“You don’t push your own expectations onto him. I’ve watched you two and you just let him be him. There is nothing I more I could want for him. And the fact that you’re willing to stand toe-to-toe with him and make him accept help if he needs it is not something just anyone would do.”

Shouto sat there quietly thinking over what he said for a moment. Part of him wished he could tell the truth about why he was here and get some insight from Masaru but he couldn’t do that to Katsuki. He was here for a reason and he had to stop forgetting that. As much as he wished he could be a part of it, this family wasn’t his and never would be. It was hard enough to hold this unrequited love for Katsuki, he feared what it would be like if he grew too close to his family as well.

He felt a hand pat him on the shoulder and it snapped out of his thoughts. “Why don’t you go back to bed, Shouto. You still have a few more hours before everyone wakes up and starts making noise.”

Shouto nodded without saying anything but he was sure Masaru could tell how thankful he was for this talk. Now that he had mentioned going to bed, Shouto could feel that his eyelids were heavier now and that for once he may actually be able to drift back to sleep after a nightmare. 

He quietly made his way back to his and Katsuki’s room, slowly cracking the door open to peer inside and see if he was still asleep. His heart clenched at the sight of Katsuki with his face buried in Shouto’s pillow and his arms wrapped tightly around it. It was a sight that made Shouto almost believe that the boy had missed him in the short amount of time he was gone. 

Shouto closed the door behind him and made his way to the bedside where he finessed the pillow out of Katsuki’s grip with the same method as earlier of petting Katsuki’s hair. The boy arched his back contently, pressing his head further into Shouto’s hand, and Shouto was easily able to roll him onto his back so he could slide back into bed beside him without waking him up. 

What he didn’t expect, but should have, was for Katsuki to roll back over again so he was snuggled right into Shouto’s chest, his hair tickling Shouto’s chin. For a moment he froze, forgetting how to breathe, but was able to relax when Katsuki took a deep content breath in and melted against him. Shouto let his hand rest against Katsuki’s spine and let the feeling of the other’s steady heartbeat and breathing ease him back into drowsiness.

During his time here Shouto had learned a lot about Katsuki. Some were little things like how he and his mother were the only ones in his family with those distinct red eyes and how when Katsuki truly smiled his nose would scrunch up slightly in a way that would make Shouto do anything to see it again. Other things were larger observations like how Katsuki showed his care for people with actions more so than words and how even with his abrasive nature he knew when to step in or leave well enough alone. It was all information Shouto knew he would come to treasure and was thankful he got the chance to see. 

Shouto pressed his face into Katsuki’s soft blond hair and gave into the temptation to leave a kiss at the crown of his head. Shouto fell asleep as he breathed in the comforting caramel scent as he dreamed of a world where he may actually have a chance to be with him. 

For now, all he could do was cherish this time he had.