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Cold Nights

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His bed is cold that night.

Tomura lies awake with his back facing the wall. An icy chill wafts off the stone and sinks into his bones. The blanket draped across his shoulders does little to shield him for the cold pierces through the ragged fabric easily. Where he isn't covered, cold digs into him through the open scabs on his neck and jaw, freezing Tomura from the inside where it fails to penetrate skin. Winter has settled into every crevice of the room and around every particle of dust. Tomura tastes it in the air he breathes alongside the stench of smoke that has wormed its way into the sheets.

There was a time when Tomura didn't mind the cold. He doesn't need warmth any more than he needs food or sleep. He can push past his bodily needs for a time; He usually does until he is no longer able to stay upright and his vision starts to blur. Cold has always been easiest to ignore though. It makes his fingers stiff, but the shivers die down after a while, and his mind will clear. Some nights, he is convinced it even sharpens his focus. And then, the sleepiness comes. It is much harder to deal with.

Tomura convulses under the blanket. His teeth clatter—the sound wrapping itself around Tomura's groans—until he tightly clenches his jaw to silence both. Tension quickly builds in his neck from the strain, but this too can be ignored.

What can't be ignored is the way his arms are wound tightly around the hole in his stomach. The pain is too much for even him, too much to endure until his condition eventually improves. He knows there is no coming back from this. The cold growing inside of him is an eternal one.

Blood drips off the bed. It cakes beneath him as it freezes, sucking the last remnants of warmth from Tomura's body. He no longer feels his fingers or toes. Slowly, his shivers start to seize.

Tomura pushes his face into the bedsheets and inhales smoke residue. He thinks of a body pressed hotly against his back and folded into the too-small space between Tomura and the wall; of soft snores and black hair scratching against his scars as Dabi's face turns into Tomura's shoulder.

Tomura isn't supposed to mind the cold. Unfortunately, he recently learned the comforts of warmth.

Closing his eyes, he thinks of hands folded around his jaw. He remembers smoke pushing through the gaps in between staples, grey wafts curling upward but failing to dim the intensity of blue-turquoise eyes. Tomura remembers the taste of that smoke on his tongue as easily as the texture of leathery lips gliding against his own.

Tomura never minded the cold. He minds now, but it doesn't matter.

Soon, he won't be able to feel it anymore.