April 20, 20XX
“Happy birthday, Katsuki-kun!” Midoriya Inko smiled down at the newly-turned teenage boy, her son bouncing a bit on the balls of his feet, a wrapped gift in his hands. “Izuku, have fun today, all right? I’ll be back to pick you up in a few hours.”
“Okay mom! H-happy birthday Kacchan!” Izuku thrust the box in Katsuki’s direction.
Glancing down at the box, then back up at the fidgety boy, Katsuki scoffed and turned to head back into the house. “Party’s in here, Deku. You can put your present on the table.”
“Wait a minute! I w-want you to open it up now...” Izuku chased the blond into the house, waving back at his mother over his shoulder. “It’s a special gift.”
The two boys headed down into the lower portion of the split level home, which was fully decorated and set up for the party scheduled to begin in approximately half an hour. At this point they were only waiting on the pizza to be delivered and the rest of the party guests to arrive. “What the hell... “ Katsuki sighed, rolling his eyes. “All right, damn nerd, hand it over if you can’t keep your panties on.”
“Yeah! I mean, no, that’s not--look, just open it, okay?” Izuku passed Katsuki the gift, wrapped in paper with stripes of red, blue, white, and yellow.
Katsuki tore into the paper ruthlessly, heedless of the care that Izuku must have put into wrapping the gift. What he found inside was practically cringe-inducing: a limited edition All Might talking figure, complete with “37 different phrases!” Attached to the front of the box was some kind of talisman or charm, likely from the local shrine.
“I-it’s a wishing charm, Kacchan! Supposedly, if you hold it really close to your heart as you whisper your deepest wish, it’s sure to come true!”
“Are you kidding me? This is the lamest birthday present I’ve ever gotten, shitty Deku!” Stomping over to the closet near the stairs, Katsuki threw the figure box and charm inside. “Ugh, why did I even have to invite you, anyway?”
“Because we’ve been close to the Midoriya family since you were practically in diapers!” Mitsuki Bakugou called out, coming down the stairs carefully with her hands full of pizza boxes.
Masaru was right behind her with a white box stamped with the logo of a local bakery. “Besides, Katsuki, it’s not every day you become a teenager. It’s important to celebrate these things with your friends!”
“Deku’s not my friend. He’s a nerd and he’s lame--”
“And he’s right here , Katsuki,” Mitsuki shot back. “Stop being a little shit and apologize!”
“Hell no, you old hag!”
“I-it’s okay, Auntie! Don’t worry about it. I didn’t take it personally.” Izuku tried to disarm the situation with a smile, just like All Might.
“All right, all right, calm down everyone,” Masaru said gently. “I think I just heard the doorbell, so Katsuki, why don’t you start your music and your mother and I will head upstairs to let the guests in?”
“Whatever.” Katsuki crossed his arms over his chest, decidedly not pouting as he watched his parents put the finishing touches on the party before they left. For a few minutes, he and Izuku were alone in the room. “Oi, Deku.”
“What is it, Kacchan?”
“I think I know what I’m gonna wish for with that charm.”
“Yeah?” Izuku’s expression was still wary, but a bit more open than before.
“I’m gonna wish that you could get a life and stay the hell away from me!”
A flash of hurt flitted across Izuku’s features. “Gee, how noble of you,” he murmured under his breath.
“Haaaah? You think you’re better than me, you little nerd?” Katsuki grabbed the smaller boy by the collar of his shirt, bringing his free hand back with explosions flashing in his palm. Izuku grimaced and turned his head away as best he could--he didn’t feel like taking an explosion to the face if he could help it.
“Hey, Bakugou! Happy birthday!!” Katsuki let Izuku go suddenly at the sound of voices filtering down from the entryway, heading toward the stairs to meet his posse.
Izuku sighed with relief and walked shakily over to the nearest wall, leaning against it as he caught his breath. He just stayed in place as still as possible as more and more people came down to the den.
Before long, it seemed like the entirety of Aldera Junior High Class 1-2 had arrived to celebrate Katsuki’s birthday. The den was loud and lively with music and conversation, young teenagers eating pizza and drinking sodas all around the room. Izuku stayed in his own little corner of the room by himself, sitting on the floor with a plate of pizza balanced on his knees and a glass of cola next to him. No one was talking to him; in fact, for the most part, everyone’s eyes seemed to glaze right over him, as if he were part of the wall itself.
“Hey! I have a great idea!” one of the girls from their class called out, holding up her empty glass soda bottle. “Why don’t we play 7 Minutes in Heaven?”
Several of the boys groaned, but the girls all squealed in excitement. After a bit of poking and prodding, they got everyone into a circle (minus Izuku), with Katsuki in pride of place sitting on a bean bag chair rather than on the floor.
“So who wants to go first? Birthday boy?”
“Fuck off. I’m here but I ain’t spinning the damn bottle,” Katsuki replied gruffly. “You wanna do it so much, you fucking spin it.”
“Okay, fine. Let’s let the bottle choose the couples, okay? That way it’s fair. I’ll spin twice and whoever the bottle lands on has to go in the closet for seven minutes!” The group agreed with varying levels of enthusiasm, and the girl who’d started the whole thing spun the bottle.
It landed first on another one of the girls from their class: Hinote, a redhead with the ability to light her hands on fire. She covered her face to hide her giggle as one of the other girls wrapped a scarf over her eyes, blindfolding get so she wouldn't be able to see who joined her. She made her way into the closet, with some help, before the group spun the bottle again.
The second victim was Nagame, a boy who could pull his eyes out of their sockets and stretch them to a prodigious length away from his head. The rest of the girls all giggled and whispered to one another as he followed Hinote into the closet.
“What’s the damn point of this game, anyway?” Bakugou asked, leaning back in his beanbag and crossing his arms over his chest.
“Well, the idea is that you kiss whoever you go into the closet with. You don’t have to, of course, but… why wouldn’t you, yanno? Especially if it’s someone you’ve been crushing on!”
“Tch. Sounds like an idiotic game to me.”
“Maybe you just need to try it out once to find out for yourself?” said one of the other guys in their class, Hanagaoki. He had messy hair and a large nose. “I’ve played it once or twice. It’s a lot of fun.”
“As if you’ve ever kissed anyone with that huge fucking nose of yours getting in the way, Pinocchio,” Bakugou spat.
“Boys, boys, calm down!” the first girl said, putting her hands out in a placating gesture. “Come on, it’s almost been seven minutes.” She held up her cell phone, where she’d set a timer, revealing that there was only about a minute and a half remaining. “Who knows? Maybe you’ll both be chosen to go in the closet.”
“God, I feel bad for whoever gets stuck in the closet with Bakugou for seven minutes,” Big Nose said in a stage-whisper. His friend, a kid whose messy brown hair always hung in his eyes, chuckled right along with him.
“You saying no one would wanna kiss me, is that it, fucker? You wanna die ?” Katsuki was out of the beanbag and powering up explosions in his hands when the timer went off.
“That’s it! Time’s up!” the ringleader girl cried out. “Hinote-chan, Nagame-kun, you can come out now!”
The two teens were giggling like mad and flushing brightly as they exited the closet; Hinote’s lips were visibly reddened and swollen. When she took her place sitting with the other girls, they immediately set to whispering among themselves, presumably milking all the information they could get about the experience out of Hinote.
“Ugh, are we doing this or not? Fucking decide already,” Katsuki grumbled.
“Right! Hinote-chan, do you want to do the honors this time?”
“Sure!” Hinote reached out and spun the bottle firmly, the glass skittering a bit across the hardwood floor. It circled around and around, slowing down gradually until it finally came to a stop…
Pointing directly at Bakugou.
“Oh!! The bottle chose you, Bakugou-kun!” Hinote said. “You have to go into the closet!”
“Tch. Fucking fine. But whoever gets chosen to come in there with me better be prepared to sit down and shut their fucking trap for seven minutes. I ain’t kissing nobody. And no goddamn blindfold!"
"Aww, but the blindfold is part of the fun!" the girls insisted.
"Fuck off! It's my fucking birthday!"
"Okay, okay, jeez. Fine then."
"Fff… give me the fucking thing." He snatched the scarf out of her hand.
As Bakugou stomped over toward the closet, Hanagaoki leaned over and muttered something under his breath to his friend, who nodded and passed it along until it reached the ringleader girl. She’d just been about to spin the bottle again when one of the other boys whispered in her ear. “...oh? You think so? I don’t know…”
With that, eighteen sets of eyes turned as one to stare at the one person who hadn’t joined the game: Izuku Midoriya.
“Hey… Midoriya?” ringleader girl said softly. The green-haired preteen looked up in surprise, then flushed brilliant red as he noticed all the stares. He’d never had this many people looking at him at once before!
“U-um… yeah?” he asked, setting his Hero Analysis Notes for the Future Volume 11 aside for the moment.
“We were just talking and… Bakugou’s probably going to freak out if any of us go in there. You’ve known him longest out of all of us, right?” she asked, still keeping her voice down--presumably so Bakugou couldn't hear them.
“Yeah." Nobayubi, Bakugou's friend with the long fingers, nodded vehemently. “You knew him even before any of us even met him.”
“I guess so… wh-why do you ask?”
“Well… we think you should be the one to go in the closet and sit with him!”
Izuku's cheeks nearly burst into flame at the suggestion. "M-me? But…" Izuku looked around the room hesitantly, but everyone seemed so encouraging… "I mean… okay…" He heaved himself to his feet, shuffling over to the closest Bakugou had gone into just moments earlier. If he went in there… would Kacchan…?
Steeling himself, he turned the knob of the closest and stepped inside, shutting the door behind him so they were plunged into darkness.
Before he could say a word or even make a move closer to Bakugou, the small space lit up, small explosions emitting from his hand and the blindfold around his neck. "God damn it, shitty nerd! Get the fuck out of here! You wanna die ?"
"N-no, K-Kacchan, that's not--" a direct punch to the face sent him reeling, and he quickly darted out of the closet.
He was met with raucous laughter from the other party-goers. "I can't believe he did it! Did he really think Bakugou would be okay with him? Does Midoriya want to kiss Bakugou?"
Tears building in his eyes and blood dripping from his nose, Izuku fled up the stairs. Bakugou opened the closet door a moment later with a roar. "Fuck all of you! Get the fuck out of my house!" He slammed the door shut again, the sound of laughter still filtering through the door.
Growling, Katsuki slumped to the floor and slammed his fists into the floor--his old hag would get pissy at him if he set anything on fire. In the process his hand knocked against a cardboard box, a piece of fabric attached to it.
Oh, right. The nerd had given him some shitty charm as part of his birthday gift. He pulled the All Might figure to his strangely tight chest, his eyes burning. "I'll show you, fucking Deku… I'll show all of them," he muttered to himself. "I'm going to be the number one hero. And I'm going to do it without any of them. I don't need help from anyone. I don't need shitty friends or extras or anyone!"
The tears finally fell from his eyes, Katsuki unable hold them back any longer. He didn't know how long he was in there, but eventually he fell asleep.
April 10, 17 years later…
Katsuki groaned as he slowly came to consciousness, his face buried in his pillow. When did he get to bed? The last he remembered, he was in the closet downstairs. His dad or the old hag must have found him after everyone left and carried him upstairs.
He rolled out of bed, rubbing his eyes, letting muscle memory take over as he walked to the bathroom. When he reached up to scrub at his head, he vaguely wondered why his hair felt shorter, but brushed it aside. It must just be laying funny.
After relieving himself, he stopped in front of the sink, blinking blearily.
Wait… where did that razor come from? He wasn’t shaving yet.
And why were there two sinks in the bathroom…?
Katsuki’s chin raised enough to meet his gaze in the mirror, but it wasn’t his familiar teenage face staring back at him. This was the face of a grown man.
“Heh… weird dream,” he muttered to himself, reaching up to touch his stubbly chin. The short hairs were stiff under his fingers. His hand reached higher to graze his close-cropped spikes, razored short on the sides and longer on top. With a deep breath, he closed his fist around the locks and yanked .
It wasn’t a dream! This was real!
“What the fuck… I’m an adult! I’m grown up!!” Katsuki stepped away to see more of his body in the mirror, turning this way and that in an effort to get a full 360-degree view. He was naked save for a pair of boxers, and his upper body in particular was ripped ! He had enormous shoulders, the biceps of a god, and his chest …
Nearly giggling with hysteria, he reached up and cupped a pectoral muscle in his hand. It felt like… like silk over steel, or something! His muscles were just so big and hard! “Holy shit…”
…Part of him wanted to see if he’d grown anywhere else , but for the time being he was almost too afraid to look. He quickly picked up the razor instead, glad it was an electric one and not a straight razor--he’d never really used one before, but he’d seen his old man shave, and the electric ones weren’t as likely to leave cuts and nicks.
After his face was free of stubble, he washed it using the facial soap on the counter, then brushed his teeth. Heading back into the bedroom, he started sorting through his clothes. Most of them seemed at least a bit familiar--at least his taste in clothing as an adult wasn’t that far off from his tastes as a teen--but everything seemed… there was just something off about it all.
What would he need a second sink for? And for that matter, there was another door… did he have a roommate, maybe?
Shaking his head, he started to pull out a shirt and a pair of jeans to change into. He could figure that out later.
When he stepped out of the bedroom, he was immediately assaulted by the scent and sound of sizzling bacon. A low humming was coming from the kitchen of the unfamiliar apartment Katsuki found himself in. It was an open room with a coffee table and sofa in front of a flat screen TV; closer to the kitchen, he could see a dining table with four chairs.
"Morning,” he called out rather gruffly. Taking a quick glance down at his left hand, he sighed with relief when he didn’t see a wedding ring or anything--he wasn’t married, but maybe he lived with a girlfriend? The humming was girly enough anyway.
“Oh, you’re awake!” Katsuki’s blood ran cold at the voice that responded. Even with the passage of time, he’d recognize that voice anywhere.
“Yeah?” Izuku fucking Midoriya poked his head out of the kitchen; Katsuki could even see the hint of an apron strap around his neck.
“The fuck are you doing in my apartment?”
“Um… I live here too.” Deku’s voice was almost concerned as he responded. “Are you okay, Kacchan? I know you were up late celebrating last night. Do you need more sleep?”
“Haah? Fuck off, nerd, I’m fine. In fact I’m better than fine, I’m fucking amazing! ” Katsuki stepped closer, bringing his hand up menacingly; but instead of shrinking back like he would have before, Deku just laughed and shook his head.
“That’s great to hear, Kacchan! Breakfast is almost ready, so go take a seat! They should be recapping things any minute now!”
Katsuki frowned. Why wasn’t the nerd afraid of him anymore? What happened between when he fell asleep and when he woke up?
He walked stiffly over to the couch, grabbing the remote as he sat down to turn up the volume on the morning news.
“...And we’re here now with our Hero Ranking Analyst, Dr. Mirashi. Our new rankings came out last night; what are your thoughts?”
“Thanks for having me, Emi-san! I’m honestly quite surprised that Ground Zero managed to snag the top spot this year, but there’s no denying his power and strength.” A picture of Katsuki appeared on the screen, both in and out of his hero uniform. Ruby eyes widened as he took in the sight, the analyst’s words turning to static in Katsuki’s ears.
“I did it… I DID IT!!! HOLY FUCK!” Katsuki nearly leapt from the couch, turning just in time to see Deku walking over with two plates of food.
But this wasn’t the scrawny little beanpole he remembered from Aldera Junior High; no, this Deku was… big . Honestly possibly even bigger than adult Katsuki, though it was hard to tell since the nerd was standing while Katsuki was sitting. Just to confirm, Katsuki stood--and sure enough the dweeb had managed to get a few centimeters on him. “How the fuck did you get so big?”
Deku just laughed again. “I know you’re upset that I outgrew you, Kacchan, but you don’t have to bring it up every week.”
“Tch.” He sat back down on the couch, grabbing one of the plates of food and starting to shovel it into his mouth. Turning his attention back to the TV, he took in the clip they were showing footage of some fight he didn’t remember. He looked super badass, firing off explosion after explosion. He was just glad he’d kept the gauntlets from his original costume design, though the gauntlets on the video were more streamlined than the ones he’d drawn when he was eight.
“How is it? I tried to remember all the spices you usually add to your eggs. I wanted to surprise you with a congratulatory breakfast!” Izuku was eating his own breakfast, also a high-protein meal of eggs and meat with a small side of rice.
“It’s whatever.” If Deku was just around to cook and keep the apartment clean, that was fine by Katsuki.
On the TV, the morning talk show hosts had changed topics. “We start the eight o’clock hour with a look at our latest world news headlines…”
“Is it already eight? I’m gonna be late! Sorry to eat and run, congratulations again Kacchan!” Deku leaned over and absently pressed a kiss to Katsuki’s cheek. “You’ll wash up dishes, right? Love you!” A sparkle of green lightning enveloped the nerd’s body as he got up from the couch, darting off at inhuman speed.
The bite of eggs on Katsuki’s fork dropped into his lap as he stared blankly ahead, trying to process what had just happened.
“WHAT THE FUCK WAS THAT, DEKU?!?” How the fuck did the nerd get that fast? What was that electricity? Why did Deku fucking kiss him?????
Sticking his head out of another door Katsuki hadn’t noticed earlier, he called out, “I know you said no quirks in the house, but I really have to hurry so I’m not late! All Might’s going to be furious if I don’t get to work on time!”
“All Might?! ”
“Uh, yeah… You know, leader of the All Might Agency, former symbol of peace, UA High teacher, and all that?” The look on Deku’s face was really starting to piss Katsuki off. “Are you sure you’re okay? Maybe you had too much to drink last night… You should probably go rest for a while. You don’t have to go into work until ten, so take a bit and get your head back together.”
As Izuku ducked back into what was presumably his bedroom, Katsuki cast his gaze around the living room, really taking everything in for the first time. Hanging on one wall was a large collection of photo frames showing Izuku and Katsuki throughout the years. There was one of them as kids, then a few of them individually--one that looked suspiciously like a candid photo from his fucking thirteenth birthday--and then pictures that were completely unfamiliar to him. Deku and Katsuki in matching gray blazers with green patches on the shoulders. Deku and Katsuki in hero gear--Katsuki’s outfit familiar, Deku’s looking suspiciously like green pajamas--surrounded by a bunch of other teenagers who could only be their high school classmates.
The number of classmates in the pictures dwindled as they got older. Whether because of them leaving the program or what, Katsuki couldn’t say.
There was a picture of what looked like Katsuki, Izuku, and their parents with the two teens in their graduation outfits--high school, most likely, judging by their ages. But the five of them were alone in the backyard of Katsuki’s childhood home.
There were also a few pictures of Deku with some of the other people from the first high school photo--the chick with pink cheeks, the guy with the weird eyebrows, another girl with wide eyes and a long tongue, the prick with two-toned hair--but Katsuki was nowhere to be seen, and there weren’t any post-high school photos of Katsuki other than newspaper clippings or magazine shots.
It was almost like… he didn’t have any friends. Or anyone in his life, really, except for Deku.
“Kacchan, are you sure you’re alright?” Turning back to look at Deku, Katsuki couldn’t help noticing the way his jeans fitted through his legs and thighs. It gave him a really weird feeling low in his gut, kind of like… No way. Fuck that.
“What are we, Deku?” he asked. “Roommates?”
“Um… I mean, yeah, I guess, but we’re also engaged. Are you sure you don’t--” Before Deku could finish the sentence, Katsuki pushed past him and retreated back to his bedroom, slamming the door behind him. He practically dove back into the bed, covering himself up with the blanket and squeezing his eyes shut as hard as he could.
“Kacchan? Are you going to go back to sleep?” Deku’s voice was muffled through the door, but Katsuki could still hear the damn concern in his voice.
Kacchan, are you hurt? I thought you might have hit your head when you fell …
“JUST FUCKING GO TO WORK ALREADY, DAMN SHITTY NERD!” Katsuki yelled.
“Ah--right! Call me if you need me! Love you!” A moment later, Katsuki heard a door slam, and then blessed silence.
“Okay. Just gotta… gotta figure out how to get back to my time and undo all this shit.” Easy enough. Glancing around the room, his eyes landed on a cell phone on the bedside table. He snatched it up, scrolling through the contacts list. Old Hag, Old Man, Deku… Shitty Hair? Raccoon Eyes… Soy Sauce Face… Dunce Face... Brain Fucker… who are all these people?
Finally a standard name stuck out: “Shindou You”. Tapping on the contact, he saw they had a recent text conversation, but the phrasing was weird. “Training…? I guess I work with them or something? Was he one of the people in the pictures?” he muttered to himself. After a moment, he groaned and rolled his eyes. “Fuck. The nerd’s rubbing off on me.”
Before he could get any farther, his phone vibrated in his hand with a new text. It was actually from this Shindou person. Be there at 9:30 to pick you up, Mister #1 hero.
Katsuki frowned at the text, replying back, Pick me up for what?
Work? Came the response moments later. Don’t tell me you partied too hard without me last night. What, did your “fiancé” finally put out?
Katsuki’s brow furrowed, free hand clenching into a fist. The very idea of… that … made him feel all sorts of weird, but he didn’t like what this guy was insinuating, either. Fuck off. I’ll see you at 9:30.
Sighing and tossing his phone aside, Katsuki laid back in bed, starfishing across the king-sized mattress as he thought. Somehow he needed to convince everyone he really was… He picked the phone back up, taking a quick glance at the date. Almost 30-year-old Bakugou Katsuki, hero name… what was it again? Ground Zero?
Not as fucking cool as King Explosion Murder, but it would do.
Katsuki jerked awake--he hadn’t realized he’d even fallen asleep--when his phone started to ring. Groggy, he fumbled around in the bedsheets blindly until he found it, swiping to start the call without even looking at the ID. “Hello?”
“Where are you?” An unfamiliar voice met his ear; Katsuki sat up and wiped at his face, trying to wake himself back up.
“I’m in my apartment.” He pulled the phone away to see who was actually calling him--and grimaced at the name “Shindou You” on his screen. Bringing the phone back to his ear, he added, “I’ll be down in five minutes.”
“I told you to be ready at 9:30, you jerk.”
“Yeah, yeah, whatever.” Katsuki hung up the call, childishly sticking his tongue out despite Shindou not even being in the room. He heaved himself out of bed and tugged on some actual clothes, rather than the basic shirt and jeans he’d put on earlier that morning. Once he was dressed properly he tucked his phone in his pocket and went on a hunt for his wallet.
Thankfully, there was a small table next to the genkan with a catch-all basket on top, a brown leather wallet inside. He flipped it open quickly to confirm that it was his (of course it was, Deku would have taken it otherwise--or maybe not, he was probably a fucking scatterbrain as an adult as much as he’d been as a child). Katsuki tucked the wallet into his other front pocket and slipped his feet into a pair of black combat boots, lacing them up quickly before he made his way out of the apartment. The door had an electronic lock instead of a key, so presumably the key card was in his wallet. If not, he’d figure it out later.
When he got down to street level and exited the building, he was met with the sight of a sleek black sports car. A man about Katsuki’s age, maybe a bit older, leaned against it, arms crossed over his chest. With the sunglasses on his face, it was impossible to tell for sure, but between his hair and his general facial shape he looked an awful lot like the older Deku. “Ugh, finally,” he called out when he spotted Katsuki. “What took you so long?”
“I was fucking busy, shut up,” Katsuki grumbled. “Let’s just get going.”
“Yes, let’s.” He slid back into the driver’s seat, Katsuki making his way around the car to the front passenger seat. Once they were both buckled in, Shindou started to drive, smoothly pulling out of the parallel park and getting on the road. “So… Congratulations.”
Katsuki snorted. “Thanks, I guess. You don’t sound too happy about it.”
“Well, when your hero patrol partner gets #1 and you’re still ranked in the thirties, it stings a bit,” Shindou pointed out. “But I know a way you can make me feel better.” The brunet’s hand slid off the gear shift to brush against Katsuki’s thigh.
Quick as lightning, Katsuki reached out and plucked Shindou’s hand off his leg, forcefully plopping it back onto the gear shift. “Not interested.”
“Oh? So I was right, then? Your little fiancé finally opened his legs?”
“Shut it. Just because you’re some knockoff Deku doesn’t mean I’m interested in that shit. And stop talking about him like that.”
Shindou blinked in surprise, glancing over at Katsuki through his shades. “Huh. That’s new.”
“What the fuck’s that supposed to mean?”
“It means you’ve never shown feelings like that before, dumbass, what else would it mean?”
“Who you calling a dumbass, hah ? Last I checked, the guy fucking hitting on someone who’s engaged would be considered the dumbass!”
Rolling his eyes, Shindou shifted gears as they hit the highway. “And last I checked, you’re the one who started this little ‘arrangement’ between us in the first place.”
“Yeah, well, I’m finishing this arrangement. I don’t want or need you around anymore.”
“I mean, we are still partners. We’re going to have to spend time together.”
Katsuki growled under his breath. “You know what I mean, Plain Face.”
Shindou was quiet for a long moment, but a small chuckle escaped his lips before he spoke again. “Wow, that was lame. What happened to all your other nicknames, Katsuki?”
“Don’t you fucking call me that, asshole.”
“Jeez, fine. You’re really titchy today, aren’t you Zero?”
“Just fucking leave me alone. I don’t wanna talk to you the rest of the drive.”
“Fine, fine. Whatever you say.”
Sure enough, they spent the rest of the ride--as short as it was--in silence, Shindou pulling up at their hero agency only a few minutes later. Katsuki was out of the car like a rocket, not even stopping when Shindou called out for him.
When he opened the door to the building, though, he stopped short, a gaggle of heroes in various costumes and plainclothes meeting his gaze. “Oh! It’s Ground Zero!”
“I can’t believe you made #1 hero with your collateral damage totals!”
“Wow, if someone with your shitty personality can get #1, anyone can!”
“Way to steal the #1 spot out from under hero Deku, Ground Zero!”
With a growl, Katsuki shoved past the crowd, making his way up to the counter. “Where the fuck do I go to get away from these shitty extras?” he asked the receptionist. She pointed mutely to a sign on the wall, her finger trembling a bit as she shrank back from the hero whose palms were popping with barely-restrained explosions.
Before Bakugou could yell at the receptionist some more, Shindou came up behind him, putting a hand on his shoulder. “Come on, Ground Zero, our offices are upstairs.” The brunet herded him into an elevator nearby, hitting the button for the sixteenth floor. “All right. Talk.”
“Thought I fuckin’ told you I didn’t wanna talk to you anymore, fucking Plain Face.”
“First of all, that’s not my name. Not your usual nickname for me either. So what gives? You’re different today.”
“...just tired. Like you said, partying too fucking hard last night. Not with shitty Deku, before you fucking go there. You say anything else about him like that and I’ll kill you, got it?”
“Jeez, fine,” Shindou replied, putting his hands up in defeat. “What, you finally catch feelings or something?”
“No! Just fucking leave him alone, got it?”
“I got it, I got it. He’s off limits. But seriously, you usually call me Shaky Fucker. What’s going on?”
“Like I’d actually tell you; even if we were friends, which we ain’t , I wouldn’t fucking tell you shit.”
“You’ve made that quite clear. All right, I’ll leave you be for now. But if you need anything today, I’ll be here.”
“Not fucking likely.”
“Of course.” The elevator doors opened with a ding on the sixteenth floor, Katsuki following Shindou reluctantly. They passed clumps of desks partially separated by cubicle walls to make small “pods” on their way through the floor, eventually stopping at one such pod with four desks. It was obvious which one was Shindou’s, judging by all the photos of him pinned up on the cubicle walls; there was also one that was completely plain. “That’s your desk,” Shindou said.
“Fucking obviously.” Katsuki plopped down into the chair, turning to face the computer in front of him. He paused when he realized that the technology was significantly more advanced than he remembered; turning to Shindou, he added, “Fuck off, Plain Face. Let me work.”
Shindou lifted his hands in submission, but the action only made Katsuki growl under his breath. The brunet backed up a few steps, making sure he was out of lunging range, before he turned to sit down in his own cubicle.
Turning his attention back to his computer, Katsuki poked at the screen--there was a keyboard, but no mouse, so he assumed it must be a touchscreen. Thankfully, the screen lit up at his tap. Now the hard part: figuring out his login.
He typed in his birthday to start, and the login screen faded away to reveal the desktop. Damn. Older Bakugou was a fucking idiot.
Thankfully, after only about twenty minutes of idly tapping around the screen to familiarize himself with everything, an alert pinged on his cell phone. “Rogue Quirk user six blocks from here, Emitter type,” Shindou called out, reading the information off his own phone.
“Let’s go light a fucker up.” Katsuki grinned wickedly--finally, he’d get to really experience what being the #1 hero felt like!
The partners made their way quickly to the changing room, Shindou taking point once more. When they got to the lockers, he muttered under his breath, “You’re number 517, right, Ground Zero?”
“Uh--right. Course, Plain Face.”
“Geez, I know you’re bad with names, but surely you can remember your own partner’s name is Quake, right?”
“Fuck you! Of course I can, I just think Plain Face suits you better.” He quickly moved over to locker 517, which seemed to have both a retina and fingerprint scanner built in. For a split second he worried that the thing would somehow know that he wasn’t the “real” Ground Zero, but it opened for him without a sound of protest.
He hustled to get his uniform on, with all its buckles and belts and moving pieces, but he was suited up and ready to go within a couple of minutes. “Which direction?” he asked Shindou.
“South four blocks, west two,” Quake replied, consulting the alert on his phone. "Just outside the Kori Locks building.”
“Got it!” He blasted into the air the way he’d seen himself do on TV. He knew he was probably leaving his partner behind, but honestly, he didn’t care; he just wanted to do things. Fight villains, win fights, and prove to the world exactly why Bakugou Katsuki was the #1 hero.
...Unfortunately, even in the body of an adult at peak performance, a thirteen-year-old didn’t have the faintest idea of what the hell he was doing. Thankfully, Quake was able to cover for him once he caught up, and they took down the villain--some kind of metal manipulator on a rampage because his girlfriend broke up with him over text and his emotions overwhelmed him--with relative ease. Or at least, that’s how they spun it to the media who mobbed the duo after the end of the fight.
“As the #1 hero, Ground Zero was letting me take point on the fight to give me the opportunity to gain more experience and improve my own abilities,” Quake said easily, a natural in front of a camera. Katsuki had to admit he seemed to be something of a media darling, despite his only average looks.
“Fucking whatever. Let’s just get back to the damn office.”
“Ground Zero, sir! Do you have any words for your fans and those who have supported you on the way to #1?” one of the reporters asked, shoving a microphone in his face.
Katsuki opened his mouth to speak, but before he could say a word he paused, biting back the curse on the tip of his tongue. He was the #1 hero in this time, but… at what cost? Everyone in his agency seemed to hate him; he was apparently cheating on his fiance, which made his blood boil just thinking about the lies that had to entail; and on top of that, he didn’t have any friends or even lackeys to celebrate his accomplishments with.
“I’m…” he started hesitantly, trying to find the words he wanted.
He needed to set things straight before this adult version of himself completely ruined his life forever.
“I wouldn’t be here without the support of my family and my agency,” he said into the microphone. “I especially want to thank my partner Quake for all his help as well as everyone who guided me to this point in my career.”
There, that sounded pretty good, if he did say so himself. With that, he turned and walked away, but not before smirking a little at the gobsmacked expression on Shindou’s face.
He’d made a few blocks’ headway on the trek back to the agency by the time Shindou caught up with him. “What the hell was that?”
“What the hell was what?” Katsuki asked blithely, as if he didn’t know he was being purposefully obtuse.
“Ohhh no. You don’t get to start pulling that shit now. You haven’t been that charming and eloquent in front of reporters since… since ever.”
“Well, if I’m gonna be a winning hero like All Might I gotta start acting like the fucking #1 hero, don’t I, Plain Face?” Katsuki smirked once more, blasting off to leave Shindou behind once more.
The rest of the day was uneventful; thankfully, Quake filled out their post-incident report, only bothering Katsuki for a few details. As soon as his shift ended, they were both out the door, and after another awkwardly quiet car ride, Shindou pulled up in front of Katsuki’s building.
“I just gotta make one thing absolutely clear. Whatever there was between us? It’s over. Never again. You got that, Plain Face?”
“Loud and clear,” Shindou replied wearily. “I still don’t know what’s gotten into you, if you’ve finally developed a conscience or what, but I’ll respect it. If you ever change your mind, though, let me know. You were a good--” Katsuki practically leapt out of the car before Shindou could finish, slamming the door behind him and darting up to the front door of the apartment.
Deku wasn’t home when Katsuki made it up to their apartment (and no, he hadn’t had to double check the mailboxes in the lobby to remember which apartment was theirs). He headed to the shower first thing, wanting to clean off the sweat and grime from the day before he settled in to relax. After that, he headed into the kitchen to get a drink.
He grinned when he saw the beers in the fridge. He was old enough now to have one without getting in trouble! Cracking a can open eagerly, he took a deep swig--and promptly spewed the liquid out into the sink. “Ugh, what the shit, that’s disgusting! Why the fuck do grown-ups drink that?” he muttered to himself, dumping the rest of it down the drain and opting for a cola instead. He was about to head back to the living room to turn on the TV and relax when he noticed the few dishes in the sink from that morning. “Shitty nerd couldn’t even clean up the breakfast dishes he made…” Rolling his eyes, he set his bottle of cola aside and started to run the hot water, adding soap to the sink to wash up the pans and breakfast plates.
Once the kitchen was sparkling clean, Katsuki took another peek in the refrigerator to see what ingredients they had for supper. He didn’t know how to cook much, but he could make a few things. When he saw pork cutlets, he couldn’t help but scoff. “Damn, is Deku still obsessed with fucking katsudon? God, what a dweeb…”
Although it didn’t sound awful to eat for supper, honestly… and he still remembered the way Auntie Inko made it.
Pulling out the ingredients, he started the rice in the cooker before he set to work on pounding out and breading the pork cutlets. The first batch of cutlets was just coming out of the frying oil when the front door opened. “Kacchan, are you home?” he heard Deku call out.
“Kitchen,” he replied loudly.
A few seconds later, Izuku’s head poked out from around the corner to look into the kitchen, eyes widening at the sight. “Oh! You’re cooking dinner! Did something happen at work today?” he asked.
“Not particularly,” Katsuki replied. “Just felt like cooking. Why does something need to be fucking wrong for me to want to cook?”
“Oh! S-sorry, Kacchan, I wasn’t trying to imply that anything was wrong! I just, you don’t… normally cook unless something’s wrong, so I wanted to ask just in case there was something I could do to help.”
“Nah. Actually, today was pretty fucking good. I bet they’re talkin’ about it on the news right about now.”
“Oh! Let me turn it on, then!” Deku smiled and leaned up, pressing another gentle, closed-mouth kiss to Katsuki’s cheek before he left the kitchen to turn on the TV in the living room.
Once Katsuki had the pork cutlets all cooked and some eggs fried up to go on top, he assembled the bowls, adding a good amount of hot sauce to his serving. He carried both bowls and two pairs of chopsticks into the living room, setting Izuku’s bowl in front of him. He looked up from where he’d been staring raptly at the screen, watching Katsuki’s short interview. “Kacchan, you were so cool!”
“Fuckin’ course I was, shitty Deku, I’m the #1 hero for a reason!”
“Of course! Ahh--thanks, Kacchan! This looks and smells amazing!”
“Damn straight. I cooked it after all.” Katsuki smirked smugly and sat down on the couch next to Izuku. The two ate quietly for a bit, just letting the evening news wash over them, until Deku broke the silence.
“S-so, Kacchan… Um…” The nerd flushed a bit, tapping his index fingers together as he gathered his words. “I know we’ve been… together for a while… and now you’ve achieved your goal of being the #1 ranked hero, which is so amazing! Congratulations!”
“Where the fuck are you going with this, Deku?” Katsuki asked.
“W-well, it’s just, wh-when you proposed, you said… you didn’t want to get married until you got to #1. And I supported you in that! So…”
“Just spit it out, damn nerd!”
“What I’m saying is, when are we getting married?” Izuku blurted out, squeezing his eyes shut tightly, as if he was afraid of looking at Katsuki as he spoke.
“Oh.” Shit, did they even have anything planned? Katsuki was clueless. “Where are we at in planning?”
“We? We aren’t… That is, I haven’t really done anything yet, since…”
“Since I said that, yadda yadda, just fucking tell me what you need me to do, Deku.”
“You don’t need to do anything! I’ll handle it! I just… wanted to make sure you still…” Izuku trailed off, casting his eyes down at his feet. Katsuki’s eyes caught a flash of movement from Deku’s hands; he was twisting his ring around on his finger, like some kind of nervous habit. Does he think I don’t want to marry him anymore? Did he find out about what Plain Face and the other me were doing?
“Can’t think of anyone else I’d rather do it with,” he said honestly. Deku might still be a nerd, but at least he was his nerd.
Familiar green eyes met Katsuki’s, seemingly lit from within, sparkling like-- shit , stop it, that’s too goddamn corny. “I’m so glad,” Izuku breathed, leaning in and wrapping his arms around Katsuki tightly.
He returned the hug as best he could, but pulled back when he felt hot wetness soaking through the shoulder of his tee. “What the fuck? Are you crying, Deku? Haven’t you outgrown the fucking waterworks by now?”
“Hey! I-I’m just very emotional, leave me alone!” Izuku pouted a bit; Katsuki couldn’t help but bark out a laugh at the sight. “Anyway, I know you haven’t talked to Kirishima in a while, but you’d mentioned having him as your best man. Do you still want to ask him? I can invite him over if you want me to.”
“Uh. Remind me who Kirishima is again?”
“Oh my god, Kacchan! You’re impossible!” Deku reached out and smacked Katsuki on the shoulder (and he definitely didn’t wince at the hit, shut up ). “I know you call him ‘Shitty Hair’ or whatever, but that’s no reason to be mean.”
Shitty Hair. The name sparked a memory from that morning, scrolling through his phone. Katsuki snorted a bit, trying to cover up any suspicion regarding the missing memory. “Fuck off, Deku, s’not my fault you don’t have any taste in nicknames. Anyway, I’ll reach out to him, don’t fucking worry about it. You just focus on your side of the wedding and I’ll take care of mine.”
Izuku nodded, another smile lighting up his face before he picked up his empty food bowl. “Okay! I’m going to have Uraraka, Iida, Tsu, and Todoroki as my attendants, so make sure you pick four.” He took Katsuki’s bowl as well before heading into the kitchen to clean up after dinner.
“Got it.” He remembered four other names in his phonebook, but hopefully one of them wouldn’t mind being left out of the party... if any of them agree to be part of it in the first place , he couldn’t help reminding himself. From the sounds of it, the other Bakugou had basically abandoned these guys.
Glancing over at the photo of him surrounded by unfamiliar classmates, he tried to pair together the nicknames he had with the faces in the image. Both the blond and the redhead had shitty-looking hairstyles--oh, but he had a real name, Kirishima. A quick web search on his phone confirmed it was the redhead, whose hero name was Red Riot.
One of the news articles on the first page of results mentioned Red Riot getting married to "Pro Hero Alien Queen," so Katsuki tapped on the link to view the article. It looked like an official press release from a Pro Hero Agency, based on the quality of the site and lack of shady advertising.
October 10, 20XX
Kirishima Eijirou, code name Red Riot, and Ashido Mina, code name Alien Queen, are happy to announce their recent nuptials. The two were married in a private ceremony in their hometown in Chiba prefecture, attended by close family and friends including a who's who of Pro Heroes. Best Man Kaminari Denki, code name Chargebolt, and Maid of Honor Jirou Kyouka, code name Earphone Jack, made the announcement to the press sharing the good news following the end of the ceremony.
The image below the press release was what looked like a professional shot of the couple. The bride was the pink-skinned girl with black-and-yellow eyes from the school photo (presumably "Racoon Eyes") in a tight, strapless wedding dress that poofed out below the knees. The fabric had a subtle cheetah pattern faintly visible, a slightly different shade or texture--Katsuki couldn’t tell from the photo alone. The bouquet in her arms was enormous and multicolored, featuring practically every color of the rainbow and then some. Standing next to her was Kirishima, looking rather uncomfortable in the suit, but the adoration he felt for his bride was clear in his red eyes.
In fact, Katsuki had to click away from the site, face flushed a bit in embarrassment. There was just something so… grown up about that look, something he didn’t understand but that made him feel weird for not knowing. All he knew about marriage, he had learned from his parents--his father giving his mother tender kisses on the cheek when he came home from work, his mother rubbing his father’s shoulders after hours hunched over his drawing table or his sewing machine.
With a sigh, Katsuki pulled up his contacts to take a look at his message history with Kirishima. He saw a lot of incoming messages, none of which his other self had answered; the last one was from late September of the previous year asking if he’d received the invitation to the wedding.
Almost a year with zero contact.
The other Bakugou is a fucking piece of shit.
Katsuki’s hands flew across his phone’s keyboard as he drafted a message. “Hey Shitty Hair. I know you probably don’t want to hear from me but I wanted to apologize for being a fucking idiot. I’d like to meet up to talk about things soon if you have some time.”
Taking a deep breath, he hit the “send” button and set the phone aside, flipping it upside down so as to keep himself from constantly looking for a response. Katsuki stood from the couch to head into the bathroom, running the bath water to prepare for a soak. “Oi, Deku!” he called out. “I already showered, but I’m gonna soak. Do you wanna get in after me?”
“Sounds good, Kacchan! I’ll be finished up in just a minute!” Izuku called out from the kitchen.
Katsuki stripped out of the sweats he’d changed into after his shower, lowering himself into the hot water of the tub to soak. He leaned his head back against the edge of the tub with a contented sigh and closed eyes, simply letting himself relax.
“Ah, Kacchan, thanks for filling the tub!” Katsuki opened his eyes to see Izuku had come into the bathroom and was currently stripping out of his clothing. Katsuki’s cheeks burned and he quickly turned his head away when Izuku’s hands reached for the waistband of his pants.
“Oi, Deku, I’m in the goddamn bathtub! Get the fuck out!”
“Ahh--S-sorry, Kacchan! I didn’t realize!” Izuku grabbed his clothes and darted out of the bathroom, his own face burning in response to Katsuki’s outburst.
Rolling his eyes, Katsuki climbed out and dried off, pulling his clothes back on and stomping out of the bathroom. “Shitty nerd, just get in the damn tub. I was almost fucking done anyway.”
“Are you sure, Kacchan?” Izuku asked, his cheeks still pink from the earlier embarrassment.
“Yeah. Go ahead.”
“Thank you.” Izuku got back up from the couch and stepped past Katsuki, who took his place. Stretching out on the couch, he buried his face in one of the decorative throw pillows and groaned loudly. Why was shitty Deku making him feel so weird? He’d seen the guys in his class shirtless before and it never bothered him then!
But those were other twerps his own age. Deku was an adult. In a way, he was almost built like a more compact version of All Might: broad shoulders and a muscular back leading down to a tapered waist.
Which reminded Katsuki that he hadn’t heard or read anything about All Might since he’d woken up that morning, except for the brief mention of him from Deku that morning.
When Izuku came out of the bathroom (thankfully clothed), Katsuki sat up from where he’d been lying on the couch. “Oi, Deku.”
“Hypothetically speaking… say someone from around sixteen or seventeen years ago suddenly arrived in today’s time. What would you tell them happened to All Might?”
“Hmm… Well, roughly fifteen or so years ago, All Might was in a really bad fight against a villain called All for One. He lost.”
“Oh…” The news felt like a physical punch to the gut. For all that he’d teased Deku for still being an All Might fan even at 13, he himself was just as much of a fan--he just kept it under wraps better. “Did he die?”
“No, he didn't… but he is retired now. He's teaching at UA--he actually started our first year. I became his successor and I work at his agency. But he's still in good spirits and he's married and happy."
Katsuki wanted to ask what Deku meant by being All Might's successor, but he figured that question would prompt the nerd to ask way more than he was comfortable discussing at the moment. “That’s good. He fucking deserves it,” he said instead. Izuku nodded in agreement as he joined Katsuki on the couch. He picked up Katsuki’s feet and settled them on his lap, starting to rub them idly. “That feels nice,” he said softly, unable to hold back a small sound of contentment.
“Glad you like it. Oh, um, while you were in the tub you got a phone call. I answered it--it was Kirishima calling you. Something about a text message? He said if you have time on Tuesday he’d like to meet for coffee around two.”
Katsuki thought back to the work schedule he’d seen at the office earlier in the day. “All right. Thanks.” He reached out to take the phone from the coffee table, shooting Kirishima another text confirming the time. Thankfully he replied back quickly, sending a lone thumbs-up emoji.
Katsuki set his phone aside once more, glancing over at Izuku. Thinking back on his mom and dad, he leaned up to press an impulsive kiss to Izuku’s cheek, his cheeks flushed red as he pulled away and got to his feet. “Gonna get a drink,” he said, voice a bit rough. “Want anything?”
“I’m fine, thanks!” Izuku’s own voice sounded strangled somehow, making Katsuki grin.
Katsuki tapped his foot nervously as he sat in the cafe where he’d agreed to meet Kirishima. He’d arrived twenty minutes early just to be on the safe side, but he hadn’t seen a single head of red hair since he arrived. Sipping at his hot chocolate (he’d tried a black coffee, but it was so fucking bitter he nearly gagged on it), he kept an eye on the door, waiting for that spiky-headed hero to walk in.
Sure enough, at 2:00 on the dot, the door swung open, eliciting gasps when a Pro Hero in full costume entered the building. Unlike Katsuki, who’d come in jeans and a hoodie with sunglasses on, his (former?) friend must have just gotten off a patrol shift. However, instead of the fire-engine red hair he’d had in the wedding picture, the roots of his hair were dark black, as if the red was only a hair dye and his natural color was growing in.
The red eyes lit up when they spotted Katsuki, heading straight over and sitting down in the empty chair across from him. “Hey, Bakubro!” Kirishima said with a grin.
“Hey, Shitty Hair,” Katsuki replied. “You want anything?”
Kirishima’s eyes widened in surprise at the question. “Really? You’re offering to buy me a drink?”
“Uh, yeah? I mean, shit, I’m the one who asked you to meet with me, it’s only fair, right?”
Kirishima stared at him for a long moment before he burst into chuckles. “Who are you and what have you done with Bakugou Katsuki?”
“Fuck off, Shitty Hair!” he shot back, wincing at how close to the mark he was. It had been less than a week since he'd woken up in this new body and new time, and he was still struggling to adjust. He pulled his wallet out and tossed a few small bills on the table to deflect from his discomfort. “Just get your damn coffee!”
Still laughing, Kirishima grabbed the bills and headed up to order from the counter. When he came back to the table with his coffee, the chuckles had mostly subsided. “Okay, okay, I believe you’re the real Bakugou. Not sure what happened to you the last few years, but at least you’ve come to your senses, yeah? At least that’s what Midoriya said.”
Frowning, Katsuki leaned back in his seat, crossing his arms over his chest. “Yeah, yeah, I’ve finally pulled my head out of my ass. That’s part of the reason I wanted to talk to you. I know I’ve been a bastard lately. I mean fuck, I didn’t even show up to your damn wedding.”
“Yeah, you have been a fuckboy. Glad you finally realize it,” Kirishima shot back.
Katsuki ground his teeth, but didn’t respond; Kirishima had every right to be mad at him. “Let’s just say I’ve changed. I’m not the same guy I used to be. And I want to set things right. So… I’m sorry for everything.”
Kirishima stared levelly at Katsuki for a long moment, his face a severe frown; but then it broke into a grin and he held his hand out in a fist. “Of course I accept your apology, bro! Mina and the others might be tougher nuts to crack, but I’ll vouch for you, yeah?”
A small smile appeared on Katsuki’s face as well, and he reached out to return the fist bump. “Thanks.”
“Of course! So was that all, or did you have anything else to ask me?” Kirishima wiggled his eyebrows suggestively.
Kirishima interrupted him, “Oh my god, is it finally happening? Are you and Midoriya getting hitched after all this time?”
“Y-yeah… and I want you to be my best man, if that’s--”
“OF COURSE!” Kirishima stood from his chair, leaning over the table and wrapping both of his arms tightly around Katsuki, nearly knocking the breath out of him. “I thought you’d never ask! I wanted you to be my best man too, but… anyway, that’s all in the past now. Let me call Mina! Can I call Mina?”
“Sure, go nuts. I’m guessing Deku’s already told our families, so by this point probably half the fuckin’ city knows anyway.”
“Okay, okay, I’ll call her. I’m so excited for you! God knows Midoriya’s been waiting long enough for you! I was honestly afraid you were gonna string that boy along forever.”
Katsuki glanced down at his cup, shrugging one shoulder. “It wouldn’t be fuckin’ fair to him to do that.”
“Exactly. I’m glad you realize it too.” Bringing his phone to his ear, Kirishima headed out of the café to talk to his wife. Katsuki leaned back in his chair once more, watching him from out the window. He could tell the moment the call connected just by the change in Kirishima’s body language--he instantly relaxed, smiling widely as he talked, his eyes shining brightly.
Katsuki could only hope that he would feel the same about Deku once they were married.
When Kirishima returned from the phone call, he still had a big grin on his face. “Mina says congratulations and insists on being a groomswoman if I’m going to be your best man. She says we’re a package deal, non-negotiable.”
Katsuki snorted. “Sure, whatever. But she has to wear a suit.”
“Perfect, she already said she’d do it!”
“Well, that’s two of my four attendants taken care of. Gonna ask Dunce Face and Soy Sauce to be the other two.”
“That’s great! We should all get together for drinks this weekend! Do you have time?”
“I’ll make time.” Katsuki’s voice was firm as he spoke.
“That’s what I like to hear, Bakubro!” Kirishima held his arm out; Katsuki clasped their hands together in response.
As the two men walked out of the café, a sudden scream from across the street caught their attention. Whipping his head around, Katsuki spotted a small child in the road, a large truck barreling down the street. The two leapt into action without thinking--Katsuki blasting himself across the street to gather the child in his arms while Kirishima planted himself in front of the truck. Thankfully, the driver was able to stop in time, Katsuki safely depositing the little girl in her mother’s arms on the far side of the street. “Oh, thank you so much! You’re Ground Zero, aren’t you? And Red Riot!” the woman said excitedly
“Fucking hell, keep an eye on your shitty kid next time!” Katsuki yelled.
“Yes, of course! She just got away from me! I’m so sorry for the trouble!”
“It’s all right, ma’am!” Kirishima said, trying to placate the woman. “Everyone’s all right, that’s all that matters.”
Katsuki snorted under his breath, turning on his heel and walking away. However, as he started back across the street, another car going way too fast came down the hill in the other lane.
As if in slow motion, Katsuki turned his head just in time to get a good look at the driver--whose eyes were closed, his body slumped forward over the steering wheel. Katsuki tried to blast himself into the air out of the way, but before he could even bring his hands down, the car slammed into his body, knocking him backwards. He tumbled end over end, trying to get himself re-oriented, but he couldn’t seem to get his arms to cooperate. He vaguely saw his right forearm bent at an odd angle before he hit the ground, his vision going black.
Katsuki jerked awake, gasping in shock, met with nothing but darkness. The first thing he did was reach up and touch his arms… but they were fine. He took stock of his body parts one at a time--hands, legs, feet, torso, head--but nothing seemed injured or out of place. There was a cloth around his eyes, which he tugged off quickly. He triggered a small explosion in his hand, the sparks lighting up… the closet in the den of his parents’ house. What…?
He slowly staggered to his feet, knocking aside the All Might figure. When he felt his shoe touch the box, he reached down and picked it up. However, before he could get out of the closet, the door opened, the twelve-year-old Deku from his birthday party slipping inside. His green eyes widened when he saw Katsuki standing with no blindfold on. “K-Kacchan…”
“Hey, Deku.” Katsuki leaned down quickly and pressed a kiss to Izuku’s cheek before he pushed the nerd aside and slammed the closet door open. “So who’s the dumb fuck that thought it’d be funny to see Deku come in here?”
“Ah, Bakugou! You weren’t supposed to take the blindfold off!” Hanagaoki said. “That’s against the rules!”
“Oh yeah? I’m pretty sure rigging the game to send the shitty nerd into the closet with me is against the rules, too!”
“How did you know? There’s no way you heard us talking!”
“He wasn’t fucking playing, you dumbass! You think I didn’t notice? Get the fuck out of my house!” Izuku had come out of the closet as well, so Katsuki grabbed him by the wrist with his free hand and tugged him toward the stairs.
“K-Kacchan, what’s going on?” Izuku asked, his voice tremulous as they went back up to the main house.
“Just stay away from those shitty extras, damn Deku. I got a bone to pick with you.” He dragged Izuku all the way up to his bedroom, not letting go of his wrist until they were both behind a closed door. "Why the hell did you let them talk you into doing that?"
"B-because… because I can put up with Kacchan better than anyone else… and I thought… maybe you wouldn't be as mad i-if it was me…"
"You stupid idiot…" Katsuki stepped toward Izuku, who backed up a step, trying to maintain some distance between them. Before too long, however, Katsuki pinned Izuku to the door, one hand propped up above his head. "J-just… wait for me, okay?" he asked, voice surprisingly quiet, though still rough somehow.
"Wait for you…?" Izuku looked up in confusion, emerald meeting deep ruby red. "For what?"
"For me to stop being an even bigger idiot than you are." Katsuki leaned down and pressed another soft kiss to Izuku's cheek. Then he reached up and shoved Izuku aside once again, slamming his door open and practically running out of the room.
Izuku stared after him, dumbstruck from the whirlwind of events, reaching up to touch his blush-heated cheek where Katsuki’s lips had touched moments prior.
Seventeen years later…
"I can't believe how much stuff you two have!" Kirishima puffed, setting down the two boxes full of books in the room Izuku had designated as the home office.
Kaminari groaned in agreement as he dropped the box in his arms beside the ones Kirishima had brought in. "It's gonna take us all day to get everything in here!"
"Oh, don't be such downers!" Uraraka called out. She had a whole line of boxes and containers floating behind her, being herded along by Iida. "It'll go more quickly than you think if we all work together!"
"I really appreciate all your help," Izuku called as he made his way down the hall. "Don't forget, pizza and beer is on us tonight!"
"Oh right! Yeah!!" Kirishima and Kaminari did a fist bump in celebration, following Iida and Uraraka out of the room to collect more boxes.
In the kitchen, Bakugou Mitsuki stood next to her son, helping him unpack utensils and cooking supplies--Katsuki insisted that everything needed to be in place before the end of the day so they would be able to cook in the morning. "So, how does it feel having your very own place?" she asked him.
"It's… really fucking nice." Katsuki surveyed the familiar apartment, the exact one he remembered from the strange dream he’d had during his thirteenth birthday party.
“It’s a great location, too! You’re within walking distance of the agency, or you can take the train if you want.”
“You think I don’t know that, old hag? That’s why I picked the place!” Not the only reason, but the one he had shared with everyone other than Izuku.
It had taken a few years for him to come to terms with both his feelings and his memories from the dream, but eventually he and Izuku worked things out. And at their joint graduation party following their commencement from U.A. Katsuki had snuck Izuku into the closet on the lower level of the Bakugou residence and told him the whole story.
Surprisingly, Izuku hadn’t been that perturbed by the unusual dream. “You’re talking to someone with six Quirks who has visions of the previous carriers of One for All. A one-off prophetic dream doesn’t seem that strange to me. Besides, you do remember we had a classmate who could give people random visions of the future, right?”.
“We did? Huh. Never fucking paid much attention to our first year class to be honest.”
And now here they were, twelve years after graduation, the top-ranked Hero Duo in Japan and the stars of the All Might Agency. Katsuki still had that limited edition figurine, new in its box, sitting on his desk in their office.
"Hey, Bakugou!" Shinsou called out, stepping in through the open door.
"Hey!" Izuku and Katsuki called out in unison, Katsuki poking his head out of the kitchen while Izuku came out of the bedroom.
Oh, and they had just gotten back from their honeymoon. That was a thing too.
"I come bearing a housewarming gift for the newlyweds," Shinsou said, holding up a bottle of wine. "Is Denki here already?"
"IN HERE BABE!" Kaminari yelled from the office. Izuku smiled and took the bottle, carrying it into the kitchen while Shinsou made his way to his boyfriend.
"Oh, this is a nice vintage," Izuku commented, putting the bottle in the refrigerator. "So how are things going in here?"
"They're fine," Mitsuki said with a smile. "My son has been handling everything, so I've just been watching."
"Kacchan is very particular about his kitchen," Izuku said with a nod of understanding. "Anyway, Mina and the baby should be here any minute. Can uncle Kacchan take a break to say hi?"
"Suppose so," Katsuki grunted. "Old hag, I'm trusting you not to fuck this up, alright?"
"You say that like your kitchen isn't basically exactly like the one at home!" Mitsuki cackled. "You two go have fun with your friends. I'll finish up here."
Izuku grinned and leaned down to press a kiss to Katsuki's cheek. "My mom finished putting the sheets on our bed, too, so we'll have a place to sleep tonight."
"Good." Katsuki gave his husband a wicked, almost lascivious grin in response.