Katsuki didn't know when the neighbors had gotten a baby. The chick hadn't even been pregnant last month when she came over to bug him for some rice, but the damn thing would not shut up. It's wails had begun halfway through his dinner and as he washed his dishes staring at the suds he tried to mentally will the thing to shut up. It stuttered, a few whimpering sobs before letting out an ear splitting screech. He growled and pushed away from the sink. If they wouldn't shut it up he would. He flung open his door and looked down as the crying stopped. Huge red eyes looked up at him. He stared at the baby wrapped in a pale green wrap. It stared right back.
“What the fuck?” He looked around, but the hallway was empty. He doubted if anyone was still there they would have let it scream for so long without doing something. There was an envelope sitting next to it, it looked like it might have been sitting on the baby's chest but had fallen off as it struggled. He crouched as he picked up the envelope. The baby hadn't looked away from him since he opened the door.
He opened the envelope and pulled out a sheet of paper. Scrawled across the page was a short note. He read it twice before looking down at the baby.
'Ground Zero-- First, thank you for saving me. Second, I'm sorry. Enclosed are the forms you'll need.
Again. I'm sorry.'
There was no name. He unfolded the papers that had been shoved into the envelope behind the note.
“Registration of a Quirk Produced Child,” he read out loud and looked down at the baby. He looked back to the form a heavy feeling settling in his stomach. He flipped the page and saw his name printed neatly in the parent slot. He stood back up and the baby made a noise of distaste.
“What the fuck?” He looked down the hall again like maybe someone would jump out and yell gotcha. This was impossible. The baby whined and he suddenly realized that it was still lying on the floor in the hallway. He scooped it into his arms and after one more inspection of the hallway stepped back inside.
The baby babbled happily and latched onto the sleeve of his shirt. He looked down at it and did the only thing he could think of.
He called his mom.
Apparently there was an entire agency devoted to this sort of thing. They sent out a little old woman that walked around his apartment studying everything. She looked at the baby who wailed the entire time she was holding him. So far he had only let Katsuki touch him without screaming his head off. His mom had laughed and told the woman that Katsuki had been the same way when he was a baby. The woman had just hummed and written something down.
Katsuki took the baby back when she held him out. He sat down and the baby giggled up at him. He waved a finger in his face and let him grab on tightly. There was no mistaking that the baby was his. Even if he wanted to dispute it, the eyes looking back at him were the same shade as his and his mother's. He had the same dusty blonde hair, though it didn't spike like his. He pulled on a curled lock and the baby babbled at him. He smiled, but before he could reply the woman started talking.
“Well it looks like everything is in order. Agent 78108 has confirmed that it was an accident on her part. The child seems to respond well to you. All I need is a name,” she pointed to the blank space on the certificate. “And the second parent's name of course.”
“Eh?” He yelped. His mom hit him on the head when the baby whined. “There is no second parent?" He spat out as his mom stared at him.
“Oh. Well,” the woman folded over a page. “Let's see here. The agent's quirk creates a blended child of two parents. Her paperwork states that it only produces a child out of love.”
“What?” he asked. He looked down at the baby as it sucked on his shirt. It looked up at him giant red eyes wide before wiggling and letting out a high laugh. Suddenly he could see someone else's face in the baby smiling at him. A different shade and that mop of curls wouldn't look too different than-
“From what I understand that child is the product of you and whoever it is that you love. You are the primary parent. It is your decision whether they are made aware, but I do need a name. For our records."
She slid the paper across the desk and tapped second parent name. He looked over to his mom who looked too smug as she watched him. He sighed and picked up the pen. The baby reached for it. He pulled him back against his chest and wrote two names on the sheet. He pushed the page away from him as the baby reached for the pen. The woman smiled in thanks.
“Okay," she read over the paperwork and then set it down with her pen poised over it. "To confirm: Child name: Koji.”
“Cute,” his mom said and ran a finger through his short curls.
“Parents, Katsuki Bakugou and Izuku Midoriya is it?”
He nodded and looked down at Koji. It couldn't be anyone else.
Up until their final year of UA he had been sure that the weird bubble in his chest when he spoke to Izuku was simply remnants of their conflicted past mixing with their solidifying friendship. But then Izuku had started dating Tokoyami. And Katsuki knew that the firey feeling in his stomach when he saw them sitting together in the common room or holding hands between classes wasn't friendship. The relief when they'd broken up a few months later had sealed any doubt he'd had. But none of that mattered. He was proud of the friendship that he'd built with Izuku. They had worked hard to mend their relationship and had both come out stronger for it. He hadn't been willing to risk it for feelings that could ruin all of that. Not when he was content with simply having Izuku in his life.
"I knew there was something going on with the two of you," his mom said when they were alone. The woman had left promising to mail him copies of the documents and Koji's birth certificate. "How long have you been together?"
He shook his head and grinned down at the baby watching him. "We're not."
"But you said-"
"It's just me. He doesn't-" he cut himself off. There was no point worrying about that. He had more important things sitting in his lap babbling up at him. "I don't know what to do," he said and looked up at his mom. "We just opened our agency."
"What do you want to do?" she asked.
He stared down at the baby who stared back at him. He looked so much like Izuku. "I don't know."
Katsuki leaned against his desk for a moment. He was tired. The fight had dragged on longer than he had wanted. Longer than it should have. He knew that. He knew that someone in the media would comment on it. But he was tired. And he needed to get changed and get out of there. He looked down at his uniform and grabbed a hoodie. He could change at home.
"Already leaving?" Izuku asked. He stood in his doorway, blocking his exit.
"It's morning. Your turn," he mumbled and stepped to go around Izuku, but Izuku shifted.
"Where do you keep running off to?" Izuku asked. He looked like he'd wanted to ask for the last month, but hadn't been quick enough and now that he had Katsuki trapped in his office he was getting his answer.
"Nowhere," he ground out. His phone buzzed in his pocket. His mom had texted three times during the fight. He looked at the clock. He was going to be late.
"I barely see you anymore. It feels like you're avoiding me." When he and Izuku had first opened the agency their patrols had mostly overlapped. But Katsuki had taken the overnight shift after Koji had arrived. He should have told Izuku then. But he didn't know what he'd say when Izuku asked him how he'd gotten the little monster. So he'd grunted out a non-answer when Izuku had asked him why he wanted to change. And apparently it hadn't landed well with Izuku. Katsuki felt his phone vibrate again.
"Can we do this later? I'm late."
He pushed past Izuku.
"Late for what?" Izuku called after him.
He waved a hand over his shoulder and pulled out his phone.
His mom answered on the first ring. "I know you can't control battles, but I had to go to work."
"What?" he barked. "What about Koji?"
"Don't yell at me, brat. I left him with family." Her voice went teasing and he swallowed.
"You didn't," he ground out. He jogged the few blocks to the train station.
"I didn't tell her anything. I just asked if she could watch him until you could pick him up."
"Thanks," he grumbled. He knew that the arrangement with his parents wasn't going to last forever, but he didn't know what else to do.
"I'll see you this evening. Get some sleep. You look like shit."
He ran up the stairs to the Midoriya apartment. It had been years since he'd last been there. He wiped his sweaty hands on his pants and knocked on the door. He heard Inko's soft voice through the door and a few seconds later he heard Koji's excited babbling. Katsuki smiled when the door opened and Koji shrieked out what he supposed meant dad. It wasn't quite the whole word, but he got the same gibberish shouted at him every time he saw him.
"Hey buddy," he replied and reached out to take him from Inko, who was having some trouble keeping him in her arms. Koji babbled at him. He liked to think he was telling him about his night. "Thanks for watching him," he offered. Inko shook herself from where she'd been stuck staring at them.
"What? Oh yes. It was no problem. He's a sweet boy once he settles down." He grimaced, the shrieking still hadn't stopped. Every day when he left him with his mom he listened to his tiny lungs shout his displeasure as he walked down the stairs. "He reminds me of Izuku when he was a baby. Always talking." She looked at Koji with a soft smile. "I was surprised when Mitsuki brought him over. Izuku didn't tell me you had a son."
"Oh uh." Koji tapped on his neck and he looked down. Koji was pouting up at him. He could see the tantrum building. "I should really get him home," he told her and looked at Koji. "Say goodbye to Aunty Inko." He took Koji's bag when she handed it to him. He waved and Koji kind of did back. "Thank you again," he said tilting his head in a bow.
"Any time," she replied touching Koji's hair.
He laid in the middle of his living room floor. Koji sat next to him playing with his toys. Katsuki pulled one of the robots arms from his mouth and yawned. He'd gotten a short nap when they'd gotten back, but Koji had woken up and they'd eaten then sat down to play.
Koji waved the robot at him and babbled. "Well if he's not your favorite then who is?" Koji stared at him for a minute. Then babbled and reached for his stuffed cow. "Ah yes. I forgot about cow. Why is he your favorite?" He listened to him babble.
He pushed up to his feet when the knock came at the door. Koji whined to be picked up, he didn't like to be left behind. He grabbed him and opened the door. He hadn't expected Izuku to be standing on the other side. Koji laughed and lunged forward. He caught him before he could drop him.
"I was sure that my mom was going crazy. But you have a baby."
He walked inside Koji wiggling around in his arms. He set him down in his playpen and pushed a few of the toys scattered around the room into a pile. Trying to make it look like less of a disaster.
"Did you steal him?"
"What? No." He looked back at Izuku who was staring at Koji. "He's mine."
"He really is…" Koji bounced as Izuku watched him. Then suddenly looked to Katsuki. "How did you get a baby? You didn't even tell me you were dating anyone. Why didn't you tell me you were dating? How is he so big already? How long have you had him? How old is he? What's his name?"
"Izuku!" he interrupted before Izuku got too far with his mumbling. "His name is Koji. He's almost a year old according to the doctor. Although that's a little complicated."
"He wasn't actually born. A chick I saved accidentally used her quirk on me and then a day later there he was."
"That's a plot out of a movie. That doesn't happen in real life." Izuku laughed, but he could feel how weak it was as he looked at the baby staring at them from the pen.
"It did. I have the paperwork to prove it." Koji's mouth wobbled and he sighed. "Oh come on buddy. No pouting." A watery look from the boy and he was picking him up. He swayed as he looked at Izuku.
"So you have a baby?"
"Yes," he answered.
"Why didn't you tell me?" Izuku was frowning as he looked at Koji.
He looked around at the chaos of the apartment. Then down at Koji. "The quirk. It-" He hesitated. He didn't know how to say this. Koji started babbling.
Izuku's eyes widened. "My mom said-- she laughed as she said it, cause it's impossible-"
"He's yours too," he blurted. He knew Inko had seen the similarities between Koji and Izuku. She'd said as much. He was so tired. And while he still felt like he could sleep for a week and still go for a nap after he felt a little of the weight he'd been carrying for the last month lift.
Izuku had never been good with people. It shocked his first agency when he came on, because he was so nice. They had failed to realize the nice didn’t mean good. He spent a little over a year fumbling through interactions, thanking his luck that he wasn’t anything big and that the people he saved didn’t seem to notice. But it had been a long road to figure out how he was supposed to act when someone was distraught or said something shocking.
He knew that he should probably say something. When people said they shared a child with someone they expected some kind of response. But he just sat there looking from Katsuki to the baby and back again trying to wrap his head around what had happened here. The first question had already been answered. Koji was a quirk baby. Katsuki had saved someone and they were stressed and their quirk activated. That made sense enough. But how did that make Koji Izuku’s child too? He had heard of a few child producing quirks, but all the cases he had seen had been fertility related and there was always a mother that carried the child. It would seem that Koji just appeared out of nothing-- and if that was the case… how?
“H-how?” he asked Katsuki, and with the silence broken, the shock seemed to break as well. “A-and how could you not tell me!?” He demanded and the baby shrieked almost like he wanted to join in the fight that he was sure to happen.
Katsuki rolled his eyes like he was annoyed by Izuku’s annoyance and shrugged like he had forgotten to show up for patrol or something. “I didn’t want to bother you.”
“You didn’t want to bother me?” he repeated not knowing how he was supposed to respond to that. “With our baby ?”
“I was my bad, okay?” He said back, a little more fire in his voice. “I didn’t want to make this your problem and we are doing just fine on our own.”
Izuku crossed his arms and stared him down. “Katsuki, you look like hell. You've been leaving early every day and you don’t look like you’ve slept in a month. How long do you think you can keep this up before you make a mistake and something happens to you.”
“God, you sound like my mother,” Katsuki groaned into his palm.
“Maybe you should listen to her more," Izuku shot at him and sat down on the floor with a huff. He looked at the baby who was watching him with big red eyes that were the exact shape of his mother's. He let out a bubbled laugh of hysteria and shook his head before he shoved into his hands. He had a baby. Bakugo had his baby. He couldn’t even remember the last time that he had had sex and now…
“Look-” He looked up when he heard Katsuki shift the couch next to him and put a hand on his shoulder. “This is exactly why I didn’t tell you. I knew you would freak out and have some kind of meltdown and frankly I didn’t want to deal with that.” Izuku knocked his hand off his shoulder at that and glared forward at the kid blowing spit bubbles at him.
“You don’t get to not tell me about our kid because you don’t want to deal with me,” Izuku hissed at him and shoved himself up off the floor. He walked down the hall to Katsuki’s bedroom so he didn’t have to look at him while he lost it. He paced up and down the small hall trying to figure out exactly what came next. They had a baby. So that would mean they would have joint custody of the baby, right? They would have to split their time at the agency, though he was pretty sure that his mom would help-- she did today and she didn’t even know. He groaned and stopped pacing when he thought about his mom. What was he going to tell her? Not to mention that his apartment was completely not ready to have a child running around it. About a thousand things ran across his mind, but as he panicked he noticed that not once did he think about how to get out of this.
He walked back into the living room and stopped in front of where Katsuki was still sitting on the couch. “Okay.” He nodded and took a deep breath. “I’m in.”
Katsuki blinked at him. “What?”
“I’m in," Izuku told him. “We’re fathers. I’m still pissed at you for not telling me,” he amended and Katsuki shrugged unaffected, knowing that Izuku would bend eventually because he always did. “But this is our kid. I don’t want him to have an absent dad like I did.” He shrugged and looked back at the baby, not wanting to look at Katsuki as he admitted that.
Koji let out some kind of laugh yell and looked like he was trying to climb out of the playpen that Katsuki had put him back in, a little crease of frustration maring his forehead. He struggled to take in a breath as he stepped forward and reached down to him, little fingers fisting on his sleeves as he pulled him up. Koji looked at him for what felt like forever, taking Izuku in as he did the same. He looked so much like Katsuki that Izuku never would have guessed that he was his child. But his blond hair curled just like his and he had freckles popping up on his nose-- and despite how utterly terrified he felt Izuku couldn't not smile when he reached out and grabbed Izuku's nose.
The first week was a disaster. Izuku had bought everything that the baby store would let him buy and had absolutely no place to put it. He was half stuck in the crib he was trying to build when Katsuki came to drop Koji off-- but ended up staying to make sure that Izuku didn’t impale himself with another nail. His apartment was too small. Katsuki’s apartment was too small. By the end of the week they were both completely exhausted.
“Okay,” Izuku sighed when Koji was finally passed out on his chest. He was laying on the couch, his feet hanging over the arm of it. He couldn’t say that he was comfortable but Koji had been awake for the entire day and was now fighting restlessly against him and he wasn’t about to break the peace. “I don’t think this is working out," he said rolling his head to the side to look at Katsuki who was sitting in the armchair next to the couch. The bags under his eyes had doubled in size since he’d found out about the baby and he was looking at the ocean of baby things like it was a villain he couldn’t quite conquer.
He blinked at Izuku looking like a little spark of fire was lighting him up as he snapped, "So you’re out?”
“What, no, jeez Kacchan.” He rolled his eyes and very carefully moved to sit up as slowly as he could. Koji fisted his hand in Izuku’s shirt and settled heavily against his shoulder. “I’m just saying that we can’t keep up with this schedule.” He rubbed at his eyes with his free hand and scratched at his face. He needed to shave. He needed to shower. But mostly he needed to sleep. “We live almost an hour apart, we are working opposite shifts, neither of us have been present at work-- we need to figure this out.” He watched Katsuki carefully not wanting to say anything more until he agreed.
But he could tell Izuku was holding something back. “Oh, just say it Deku.”
He took a deep breath and looked down at Koji’s sleeping face before he said, “Maybe we should move in together.”
Katsuki looked completely startled by the idea. “What--No.”
Izuku frowned at him. “Why not?” he demanded, biting his lip when Koji stirred at the sound of his raised voice and resettled.
“Because… it’s weird.” Katsuki shook his head, somehow managing to shout in a whisper. “We are two grown men, Izuku. Living together is for teenagers and couples.”
“And people who have children," he countered. “We wouldn’t have to waste time every single day driving across town. We could afford a bigger space that actually has room for a baby. We could move closer to the agency that’s not that far from our parents' houses, and my mom could help watch Koji so we can get you off the night shift.” He shook his head at him. “I know it’s not exactly ideal, but think about it. He’d have both of his parents in the same place and it’s not like we haven’t lived together before.”
“That was in a high school dorm.”
“Katsuki," Izuku huffed in frustration and Katsuki held his hands up.
“Okay, fine! You’re right!” He admitted and groaned at the time on his watch. “Anything to get off of the fucking night shift.” He pushed himself off of the chair and grabbed his jacket off the back of it. “I’ll be back in a few hours, and I’m crashing here, Koji freaks out on the train in the morning." He leaned in and kissed the baby on the top of his head, putting Katsuki’s face so close to Izuku’s that he had to turn slightly to hide the heat in his cheeks. “Look at some places?” he sighed finally and Izuku nodded quickly, watching him walk out the door.
Finding a place wasn't as easy as Izuku had made it seem. They argued over where they wanted to live, not too far from the agency, but not too close to their parents, and how much they were going to spend. The only thing that they agreed on was crime rates. Places were easily vetoed by a single stat. After a week of sending each other links to places, they finally had settled on a few locations. It took another week to find time in their already overloaded schedules. Katsuki had just finished his shift, was tired, still smelled like smoke, and wanted to drown himself in the shower, but Izuku was off and Inko had agreed to take Koji for the day so he trudged onto the train instead of heading back home.
The first place they looked at Izuku had called 'affordable' in his email. Katsuki knew that meant cheap. Izuku was helping his mom out now and worried non-stop about getting injured and not being able to work. Even though they made more than enough with one of their hero salaries, money was still a worry for Izuku. Apparently 'affordable' also meant small. The third bedroom was barely more than a closet. He stood in the middle of the room and touched all four walls without straining and looked at Izuku.
"Koji's crib won't even fit in here." The other two rooms weren't much bigger. "My apartment is bigger than this."
Izuku walked into the bathroom then walked back out and pushed Katsuki back to the door. He thanked the landlord as they passed him on their way out the door.
"What was in there?"
"Nothing. What's next?" Izuku pulled out his phone and ignored Katsuki's questions as he guided them to the next apartment on their list.
"The kitchen is small," he mumbled, but couldn't really say much else.
"It's a lot of stairs," Izuku said looking over to him. He could tell that Izuku didn't know how he felt about it either. There was just something off about the place.
"Leave it on the list."
The next two places were crossed off quickly. He was starting to get a sense of how Izuku felt about a place within the first few minutes of them looking around.
Izuku loved the last place on the list for the day. His face had lit up when they walked in, though he'd been trying to hide it from the realtor. 'You can't let them know you like a place, Kacchan, ' Izuku had whispered to him before they'd walked into the first apartment that day. Katsuki yawned and looked around as Izuku disappeared further in. It was bigger than the last few. The kitchen was a little smaller than the one he had in his current apartment, but wasn't small. There was a bedroom just off the main room, closest to the door. The restroom was next, then two bedrooms were at the back. He found Izuku in one of the bedrooms looking out the window.
Izuku turned and smiled. He swallowed and stepped up next to the window. That smile had always done things to his chest. He looked out the window and saw a small park with a few swings and a big fountain across the street. There had been a park like that near their parents place. Izuku had nearly broken his arm falling from the top of the jungle gym.
"Koji's crib could go under the window," Izuku said quietly. "You could have the room up front." He had thought that too. "I know it's further from the office than we'd agreed on."
"It's not in the price range you wanted either," he pointed out.
"It's not too far. And we can afford it."
"I don't want you stressing about money all the time."
"I won't," Izuku promised. He looked so earnest, like this would be the only thing that would make him happy. "But it's perfect. We can walk to our parents'."
"More reason not to pick it," Katsuki grumbled. Izuku chuckled. "You think I'm joking. They'll be over here all the time."
"They'll be able to help."
He looked at Izuku then pushed away from the window. "Whatever. I'll go tell that chick we'll take it."
Izuku was waiting for him in the lobby and smiled when he saw him. He grimaced back at him.
"There are three other people. She said she'd be in touch," he told him as Izuku's face dropped. He followed Izuku down the street listening to him talk about what furniture they could take from either of their places. Katsuki didn't know how to tell him that they weren't going to get it. The realtor hadn't recognized them, and when he'd said that Izuku was his partner he'd seen the look of distaste on her face before she covered it with a forced smile.
"Maybe we should look at some other places too," he offered while they rode the elevator to pick up Koji.
Izuku made a noise dismissing it, but by the time the doors opened he had convinced himself that it wasn't a bad idea. Inko told them that Koji was in Izuku's room and he didn't wait to get him. He heard Izuku apologize, but Inko laughed and said that she understood. He didn't know what was wrong with him, but there were days when all he thought about was going home and seeing Koji. He had made fun of Todoroki when he'd shown off pictures of his and Momo's kid, but now he understood.
"Hey little dude. You ready to go home?" He got a yawn as an answer and after picking Koji up he grabbed Cow from the crib that had appeared overnight in Izuku's old room.
"You ready?" he asked Izuku. Koji had already fallen back to sleep in his arms.
"Oh yeah." Izuku grabbed the bag and hugged his mom. "By mom. See you later!"
"Thanks again," he called with a wave. Inko had taken Koji's parentage about as easily as his mom had. He didn't know if she was used to the life of a pro-hero or if she had seen it coming. His mom claimed the latter any time it came up. He pretended not to know what she was talking about.
"My place is closer. You could stay over," Izuku said when they settled on the train. He hadn't realized how tired he'd been until he sat down. The warmth of Koji on his chest and Izuku against his side had his eyes drifting shut.
"It's your day off. I have him," he answered trying to blink away the sleep pulling at him.
"My day off of work ," Izuku replied sharply. There was a stiffness to his jaw he knew meant he was holding back saying something. Koji whined when he adjusted his hold, but didn't wake up from his nap. "And you don't take days off."
He didn't know what to say to that. So he didn't say anything, just shifted Koji so he wasn't lying right on a bruise he'd gotten during mugging at the beginning of his shift.
Katsuki fell asleep between stations and let Izuku pull him to his feet at Izuku's stop. As soon as his head hit Izuku's pillow he was asleep.
He didn't know how long he slept, but he woke up to Koji staring at him from the edge of the bed. He smiled at him and Koji smiled back. "What are you doing in here?"
"I missed my daddy." He blinked, had he just-- Koji wobbled and he saw Izuku's hand come up to steady him. That made more sense. He rubbed his eyes and shifted to grab Koji's outstretched fingers.
"Did you?" he asked. "You sure that Deku didn't just get bored out there by himself?"
"I wasn't the one that got bored. He threw a tantrum when I couldn't make the right voice for Cow. It's not fair that he never cries with you," Izuku said and sat up. He lifted Koji so he could crawl across the bed to him.
"He does when he's tired." He looked at the boy. "Or when he doesn't like what I'm doing. A lot like you."
"What?" Izuku asked and shook his head.
"You might not cry about it anymore," he yawned. "But you still make it obvious when you're unhappy. Did you want to play with Cow?" he asked in the voice he always gave the stuffed bovine. Izuku scoffed when Koji laughed. "I don't know why you can't do Cow's voice. I'm just mimicking your voice."
"What?" Izuku squeaked. Koji looked at him and clapped and Izuku's face went red before he started laughing. Koji crawled over to him wanting to investigate the noise.
"I ordered take out. Didn't feel like cooking," Izuku said once he'd stopped laughing and had babbled back and forth with Koji for a few minutes. He rolled his eyes, but knew he was smiling as he watched them. The baby crawled back to him and Izuku's eyes met his and he suddenly realized that he was in Izuku's bed, and Izuku was leaning halfway across it while he smiled at their son's silly conversations. He sat up, Koji whined at the sudden movement. He pressed a kiss to his head and grumbled that he needed a shower.
It took three weeks for the apartment to call them back and tell them that they had gone with someone else's offer. In those three weeks Koji had said his first word. A simple Dada to Katsuki. Walked while he was at work. Izuku had texted him the video then wailed at him about it when he stopped to pick Koji up. And they'd basically started living at each other's places. He had clothes spread out across the chaos that was Izuku's living room. Izuku had his favorite cereal and a stack of notebooks at Katsuki's.
He woke up the morning after his day off to silence. Silence was never good. Between the two of them Izuku and Koji always made noise. He bolted out of his bed and into the living room. It was empty and spotless. Even the stain from a disaster of a dinner a few weeks ago had been cleaned. All of Koji's toys were tucked away in the bins that he'd bought with the intention of putting them in but they never actually managed to make it back in to. He walked into the kitchen and it was just as clean.
BK: Did ninjas attack you then clean my apartment?
MI: Your dad came over. We're out getting groceries.
A picture of his dad holding Koji up so he could grab at a bunch of bananas followed.
BK: Don't let him buy Koji any more clothes.
MI: Too late.
They came back with two bags of food and four of clothes.
"He isn't going to fit in these in like a week," he grumbled as he pulled out one of the shirts. "You sure my dad is the one that bought these?" he asked holding up the Deku shirt. Izuku pretended that he didn't hear him as he put the groceries away. His dad was sitting down to play with Koji in the living room.
"I tried to find one of yours, but I don't think your target market is children. I did get him one of those skull shirts you used to wear all the time." He let his dad go through the bags, showing him a few of the outfits he'd gotten him. He'd thought ahead and had gotten clothes for him to grow in to. Koji seemed to like a few of them already. He crawled around with one gripped in his fist.
"Hey Kacchan? I thought you said we had milk."
"We do. It's behind Koji's food." Izuku shook the empty bottle at him. "Maybe it's at yours?" he said with a shrug. "I saw some in a fridge."
"Could you go get some?" Izuku asked.
"But Deku, we're busy." Izuku stuck his head out of the kitchen and grinned when he saw Koji in the Deku shirt waddling back and forth between Katsuki and his dad.
"That's cheating," Izuku said. Koji turned at his voice and took a few steps toward him. He fell and Katsuki saw him tumbling toward the table. His head hit the edge before he could catch him.
"Shi-oot!" he cursed and pulled him up and touched his head.
"Is he okay?" Izuku asked.
Koji looked up at him with wide questioning eyes. Before he could reassure him, his chin wobbled and his mouth opened in a silent wail that only stayed silent for a second before he sucked in a breath and the screeching started.
"Hey no, you're fine," he said, trying to soothe him, but only got hitches in breath before the wails continued.
"You wanna see the pretty sparkles?" Izuku asked. Izuku elbowed him and nodded at Koji. He held up his hand and popped a few small explosions. The screaming stopped immediately. He kept up the tiny sparks as Izuku checked the back of Koji's head. He stopped crying and clapped when Katsuki switched hands. "You like dada's sparkles?" Izuku asked pulling Koji into his lap.
"Sparkles?" he said with a raised eyebrow.
" Pretty sparkles," Izuku said with a grin.
He glanced over to his dad and frowned at the too big smile on his face. Ugh. He was probably memorizing everything so he could tell his mom. "You still want that milk?"
Izuku looked up at him and nodded. "Please?" Koji whined when the 'sparkles' stopped, but Izuku started talking to him.
"I'll walk out with you. I have to get back home. Your mom is making stew," his dad said and climbed to his feet with a complaint that he was getting too old.
He watched his dad kiss Koji and say his goodbyes.
They walked down together. "You're doing good," his dad said when they reached the street. "I'm proud of you both." Katsuki let him pull him for a hug and only complained when he rubbed his hair.
"They accepted our offer!" Izuku screamed. He jumped so hard he almost fell off the couch. He caught Koji before he could topple over the edge.
"The one with the patio and that shower you loved."
"I didn't love the shower," he said.
"You told your mom about it."
"You loved the shower." Izuku pushed his feet over and sat down on the couch.
"Now we just have to move," he mumbled. "That's going to be fun isn't it?" he asked Koji. The boy just stared at him. "Yeah. I'm not looking forward to it either."
"Umm. Toshi actually offered to pay for movers?"
"He wanted to help, but you know with his health."
"You told him?"
"Well yes? Was I not supposed to?" Izuku looked genuinely surprised. "It's Toshi."
"Just don't go telling everybody."
Izuku didn't know why it bothered him so much. It wasn't like Izuku didn't understand why Bakugo didn't want to broadcast that they had an accidental quirk child to the world-- but he also knew it wouldn't be possible to keep quiet forever. They were moving in together. Eventually one of their friends would stop by and see them with a child and demand to know who Koji belonged to. And then what?
"He looks more like me," Katsuki offered when Izuku brought it up a week later. "Easiest thing would be to say he's my kid and if they look more into it, we tell them you moved in to make sure I make it to work every now and again." He didn't say anything as he taped the box shut, feeling his forehead crease as he concentrated too hard. "Even your silence is loud. What ?"
Izuku rolled his eyes and turned to him knowing that they were about to get into another fight. It felt like all they did lately was bicker at each other and coo at the baby. But usually it was just about stupid stuff. "I… don't want to lie," he told him and moved onto the new box that he'd been passed to tape up.
"For the love of god, Deku. It won't kill you to lie about some stuff every once in a while," Katsuki groaned at him.
"It's not the lying that bothers me," Izuku said a little gruffly. "Koji is my kid too."
Katsuki's face reddened a little. He knew that of course. But he didn't like to be reminded. "I know that."
"Well how would you feel if I asked you to be fun uncle Kacchan instead of Dada?" He said a little bitterly, the loud rip of tape was the only thing that disturbed the silence.
He waited for the next box but it didn't come, and when he turned to look behind him Katsuki was frowning at him. "Koji knows you are his Dad." Izuku rolled his eyes. Koji had learned a few more words over the last week and while Izuku had been hoping to get a Daddy or a Pop out of him, Katsuki's impression had been too strong and he had now been christened as 'Cow' . "Don't do that, it's annoying," he growled at Izuku and pushed another box his way. "This is just for everyone else. All of the important people know. Let's not make it complicated."
Izuku stacked the boxes and moved them to the corner of the room. "We need more tape," Izuku told him and walked out of the room for a little space.
He had been dodging Uraraka's calls for a week but they didn't seem to stop her. She left him messages and texted him insisting that he tell her where he was moving and why. She just couldn't understand why he would give up a rent stable apartment in the city-- and since he and Bakugou had decided not to tell people, he had no excuse for her. So he told himself he would call her later and focused on getting everything moved and settled with his subletter.
Toshi came by a few days after they had gotten into the new apartment. It was still early so Bakugo was at work and Izuku was working on the last of the boxes they had out and about while Koji finally slept. He had been up all night, a new tooth trying to pop out of his gums leaving him an uncomfortable fevered mess and Izuku was completely exhausted.
Toshi was nice enough not to mention how horrible he looked as he made them tea, instead he complimented the apartment. It had actually come together really well. For people with such opposite tastes, the contrast was nice. They had pretty much decided that all of Izuku's kitchen things were to be donated-- save a tea pot, a few mugs and his silverware. Everything else in the kitchen had come from Katsuki, and seeing as he could barely cook, Izuku didn't complain. They had kept Izuku's couch because it was large and easier to clean and the dark brown went well with all the green and blues they had on the walls and shelves. They hadn't planned on any of it, it just sort of worked out as a nice surprise, and overall the apartment looked a lot homier than either of theirs had before.
"The movers were a big help," Izuku told his mentor gratefully. "Kacchan insisted we didn't need them but he took a bad hit to his shoulder a few days ago and even if he won't admit it, he can hardly lift Koji right now."
"Still hasn't changed then." Toshi chuckled and dressed his tea. "I was happy to help. I would have done it myself but… you know." He shrugged like it was nothing. But they both knew better.
After his fight with All For One, Toshi had been having more difficulty breathing. He did what he could to make it better. He carried an inhaler and slept with a respiratory machine. He had even had a couple of surgeries, but they could only do so much to delay what the doctors said was inevitable. They had been surprised when he made it past the first year and every one after that had been a 'miracle'. He told Izuku once that he was just too stubborn to let go, that he had promised his mother that he would make sure Izuku was raised right and he just wasn't ready to be done yet. Not until you are number one. He was getting worse. The doctors threatening to get him an oxygen tank full time-- but Izuku knew he would never agree to it. Toshi didn't like to talk about it. So he took every chance he could to hear about Bakugou and Koji.
The baby monitor went off and Izuku groaned before he realised the Toshi hadn't met him in person. He excused himself to walk to Koji's room. He would have invited Toshi back but it was covered in all of Izuku's old All Might things and he wasn't sure he was ready for that embarrassment. Koji was grumpy and buried his face in Izuku's shoulder as he walked him back out to the kitchen and grinned as he watched Toshi's eyes light up. "Koji," Izuku cooed at him. "Wanna meet Cow's mentor?"
"Cow?" Toshi asked stuck between confused and amused.
"Bakugou," he said in explanation and rubbed the baby's back until he turned shyly to look at Toshi. He frowned tearfully at him, some place between mad at being awake and confused by the new person in his space.
"It's okay little one," Toshi told him and flexed into his muscle form for a moment. "I am here!" He told him with a booming laugh before he let it go and Koji clapped laughing at the man from his walls.
Izuku watched Toshi play with Koji, his heart full in a way he hadn't prepared for. They tried for thirty minutes to get him to say Toshi or All Might or Pop Pop, and by the time Bakugou stumbled into the apartment he was babbling, "All Pop!" Over and over as he pulled on his hair.
Toshi left a little after Bakugou got out of the shower, but not before he doted on him to the point where he was red. Izuku knew he hated when people complimented him, but even Bakugou couldn’t turn down his mentor who promised to come back again soon. Izuku watched the door for a long minute after it closed, Koji balanced on his hip still shouting, "All Pop!" like it would make him come back in.
He jumped when Bakugou put a hand on his shoulder. "He's not going anywhere today," he reminded him. Izuku nodded slowly and let out a breath he hadn't realised he'd been holding.
He unpacked their last box a week after they had moved in and sank onto the couch in victory next to Katsuki who was bouncing an almost sleeping Koji in his arms. "No more boxes?"
"No more boxes!" Izuku whispered back and silently shook his hands at a make believe adoring crowd. Bakugou rolled his eyes at him, but he could see the ghost of a smile pulling up his mouth. "That's it. This is officially home."
They both watched Koji as he yawned and after a minute, Bakugou admitted, "Maybe this wasn't a completely horrible idea." But it only lasted till the last word. A loud rap on their front door made them both jump and immediately set Koji off in tired frustrated tears. Izuku knew how he felt. He was tired. He was frustrated. And they most definitely were not expecting visitors. Izuku resigned himself to getting the door as Bakugou tried to calm Koji down, hoping to take whatever pamphlet they were handing out and rush them off.
What he wasn't expecting was the entirety of their highschool class to be standing in the hallway, shoving each other to try and see what was making the noise beyond the door. Uraraka was at the head of it all managing to make her smile almost look guilty as she clutched a bottle of wine between her hands, begging for forgiveness. "Uraraka…" he blinked in surprise feeling completely overwhelmed. "What-"
"We wanted to surprise you!" She told him too quickly, face turning red. "We didn't realise you would have company."
"How did you even find where I was?" He demanded.
"I asked Mineta," she said pointing at the small man pushing his way to the front.
"How did he know?"
"He knows where everyone lives." She shrugged as if it were an everyday fact and finally asked, "Deku… why is there a baby in your apartment?"
He scrambled for an excuse but everyone started spouting off questions and eventually they overpowered him and shoved open the door. They tumbled into the living room and stopped dead, all of them staring at Bakugou on the couch with the now wide awake Koji babbling hello to everyone in his own language.
"What the hell is going on?" Bakugou demanded, his glare singling out Kirishima and Ashido like he knew they had to somehow be behind all of this.
" What the hell is going on?" Kirishima demanded. "Why are you are Midoriya's apartment? And whose baby is that?"
Izuku met Bakugou's eyes and even though they hadn't agreed on it completely, he knew immediately what he had to say.
"He's Katsuki's," Izuku said as easily as he could manage, feeling his face starting to heat up. "He needed the help so we got an apartment together. Right, Kacchan?" He asked feeling the panic start to bubble up in him.
"Yeah," he said just as stiffly.
The apartment was an uproar in seconds. "How could you not tell me?" Kirishima demanded looking sincerely hurt. "We are best buds!"
"Forget, him. What about me?!" Ashido wailed.
"No way that is your kid," Sero said. "It's smiling, when have you ever seen Bakugou smile?"
"Kacchan smiles," Izuku grumbled under his breath staring straight at the ground.
"I've only ever seen Bakugou smile around Midoriya," Todoroki offered. And they were jumping all over each other again.
They tried their best to get their old classmates to leave, but it was no use. They had too many questions and Koji was immediately passed around and adored by all of their friends. They decided that it would be easier to stick together, that way they could keep their stories straight and help the other where they fell off. They had them cornered on the couch, holding wine glasses that they hadn't touched as they rapid fired answers off almost without thinking. Until they got stumped. "So who is the mother?" Iida asked finally when most everyone seemed satisfied. "I'm sure she is part of the equation."
Bakugou shrugged and glanced at Izuku. "It was… just some chick from high school. She'd had a thing for me and we hooked up and well…" he took his first drink of wine to have an excuse to stop talking.
Kirishima snorted. "A crush from highschool? No way man."
Ashido grinned. "Yeah! The only person who had a crush on you in high school was Midoriya!"
And just like that, Izuku wanted to die. He wanted to crawl into one of the empty boxes in the corner and tape himself inside. Maybe they would ship him to America and he could start over as a completely different person. But he wasn't in a box and there was no way he could leave Koji, so he was forced to suffer through the penetrating stare of the father of his child.
"That was a long time ago," he told her and tried to play it cool even though he knew his face was redder than their crimson curtains.
There was a shrill laugh from the corner of the room and they all looked as Koji waddled their way saying, "Cow!" as he reached for Izuku.
Izuku slipped from the couch and let Koji walk to him before pulling him into his arms. Everyone was watching them. Katsuki hadn't been able to look away from Izuku since Ashido had made her declaration.
"Cow?" Kaminari asked. Izuku shot him a glare, or as close to one that anyone other than villains for Katsuki ever earned. "He's definitely a Bakugo."
Katsuki watched as Koji chattered at Izuku. He would never deny that Koji was his, but there was so much more of his personality that was Izuku. It was like the quirk had decided that he was better off acting like Izuku. He couldn't say he disagreed. His mother had told him too many times that he had been a brat since he was born. Koji said Cow a few times and crawled from Izuku's lap.
He crawled into Uruaka's who was sitting next to him and stared up at her. "Uh!" he shouted and bounced.
"He wants up," Izuku said when she looked over to him. "He likes to be held."
"Aww," some of the girls cooed.
"He loves people's quirks," Katsuki volunteered.
Ururaka looked over to him. Her eyes sparking in delight. "Do you want to go up?"
"Uh!" Koji cried again and bounced. She touched him on either side of his chest. He started to float a few inches off of her lap. Koji shrieked his delight clapping as he wobbled in the air. Izuku was watching him like a hawk as he rose to eye level with Ururaka.
"Hi," she said and waved. He waved back with a giggle. She looked to Izuku and pulled her hands together in her release signal. Izuku only let him drop an inch before pulling him in and chuckling with Koji as they settled back against the couch.
"Uh! Uh!" Koji cried pulling himself from Izuku's arms. Everyone turned into showing him their quirks. Everything was going fine until Mineta popped off one of his balls. Koji fell back in apparent shock and started screaming. Jiro cursed and covered her ears. He was up and grabbed Koji walking him out of the room as he bounced him.
"You want the pretty sparkles?" he asked when he didn't seem to be calming down. He was tired, grumpy, and it was way past his bedtime. He popped a few sparkles and Koji's cries quieted. "You're okay." Koji reached for his hand. "No, baby. No touching." He stopped sparking when Koji reached again. He grabbed his hand and looked at it. "I'm going to put him to bed. You all better be gone when I get back." Kirishima rushed over and gave Koji the tiniest fist bump and told him he's see him later. Ururaka came up and kissed him on the forehead, which he thought was odd, but understood he was a pretty cute kid.
The rest just waved at him as he walked down the hall to Koji's nursery. He met Izuku's eyes and knew that he'd shoo them away.
"That wasn't so bad," Izuku whispered. Koji was holding on tightly to Cow's leg as he slept.
"Was Ashido telling the truth?" he asked, keeping his gaze on Koji. He wanted to look up and see his answer for himself, but he kept his gaze down.
"Like I said. It was a long time ago. And it was just a stupid crush." Izuku chuckled quietly. He didn't respond, just watched their son as he slept. "You're not going to be weird about it are you?" Izuku asked.
"No. Like you said," he offered and looked across the crib. "It was a long time ago."
Narrator Voice: But it wasn't.
This story is named after the song I Will by the Beatles. It is simple and beautiful, much like our boys relationship ♡. If you are not a big fan of the Beatles, much like my dear DNA, there is a beautiful cover by Imaginary Future. Please listen and enjoy!
Thanks for reading and we'll see you next week!
Izuku called while he was in the waiting room watching Koji play with a set of blocks. Katsuki watched a kid with a runny nose crawling toward him and wanted to blast the kid and snatch Koji away. There were too many germs crawling into his son's space.
Katsuki answered the phone just to keep himself from screaming as Koji handed the snot covered brat a block.
"Where are you?"
"The doctor's office." He looked up at the receptionist window, but it was empty. "No. Don't put that in your mouth," he hissed in a horrified whisper. Koji pulled the block out and set it down, eyeing Katsuki like he was insane.
"You're okay then."
"There's been a break out."
"Bakugou Koji?" the receptionist called.
"I gotta go. Tell me about it later."
"No wait! Kacchan--" he hung up and grabbed Koji, wiping his hands off with the sleeves of his jacket as they walked back to the exam room.
He held Koji and talked with him while they waited. He kept his hands away from his mouth and eyed the soap on the sink.
The doctor came in with a wide smile and Koji immediately tucked into his chest. The last time they'd been there he had gotten his shots and he definitely remembered the man. "Hello, little Koji." The boy cooperated for most of the exam, only whining a few times. The doctor sat back looking at the chart as Koji complained to him about how he'd been mistreated and he never wanted it to happen again. The babbles earned a smile from the doctor as he sat forward. "It looks like he's developing well. Size wise he's doing well. Developmentally, he's a little behind what his estimated age group is, but we talked about that last time. Having said that he is further along that I would have expected him to be. So keep doing what you're doing."
"He's walking more on his own, but he's still," he pointed down at the motor mouth babbling away in angry gibberish.
"That's normal. You said that he was calling out names?"
"Calls his other dad Cow, but yes." Koji looked up at Izuku's nickname and smiled.
"We'll see him again in a few months for another check up and if you're still concerned we'll do some tests. But I am not worried. He's playing catch up, but he'll get there."
He washed Koji's hands in the sink before they left and heard an amused chuckle from one of the nurses.
"What do you want for dinner?" he asked digging through Koji's bag for his keys. He thought he'd put them in his pocket, but he must have dumped them in the bag. He found the stupid Ground Zero Keychain Izuku had bought him a few years ago and pulled them out.
"Bakugou," Toshi was standing in front of their door. He looked worried and yet relieved when he saw them.
"All Pop!" Koji cheered. Toshi smiled and waved at him. Koji waved back as he reached for him. He held on as he walked the last few feet to the door.
"What are you doing here?" he asked opening the door and motioning the other man in.
"Did Izuku get ahold of you?"
"He called while I was at the doctor's. He okay?" he asked setting Koji down in his pen with cow.
"There was a break out."
"He said that. There are breakouts every few months."
" He escaped."
He froze. Toshi looked at him, and he understood the worry now. "Where is Izuku?"
"He's working with the police trying to find out how he did it and where he went." He nodded taking in Toshi's answer and looked over to Koji who was smacking his robot and cow against each other.
"I'll call the agency." Katsuki knew that he couldn't go in, leave Koji with his parents or Inko while Izuku was chasing him. "You staying for dinner?" he asked. Toshi relaxed and sat down. "Koji never did tell me what he wanted to eat. Do you know?"
They ate and watched the news. Katsuki answered panicked calls from all of Koji's grandparents and waited.
Toshi was asleep in Izuku's bed. He'd resisted, but Katsuki had pushed him down the hall. He was watching an infomercial about tape, with Koji asleep on his chest, when the door creaked open. He wrapped a hand around Koji's back and sat up with his other arm extended. He put his hand down when the familiar mop of green walked through the dim light from the kitchen.
There was a flash of green and Izuku was suddenly there wrapping his arms around him, startling Koji who whined about being woken up. He didn't know how to respond to the sudden embrace, so he just stood there until Izuku took a step back and pulled Koji from his arms slowly. He had to admit after the tension of the night it was hard to let go.
"Did you find him?" Katsuki asked. Izuku shook his head looking down at Koji.
"He'd barely moved for the last three months," Izuku said when he finally found his voice. It had been a difficult day. He should have known just how wrong everything was about to go with how quiet it had been at the agency. He'd been going through side kick applicants when they got the call about the break out, and Izuku had barely gotten his uniform on before Detective Tsukauchi called him directly. And just like that, after ten years of being locked up, the most dangerous man in the world was gone. "The camera feeds were off line. It looks like someone on the outside knocked out the power for six blocks." He rubbed at his eyes and sat harder on the couch than he meant to, making a face as he waited for Koji to wake back up. But he didn't move. He let out a breath and let his head fall back onto the cushions. "His cell was completely untouched. The doors were locked and his restraints were unbroken. It's like he just…" Izuku shook his head.
"Vanished," Bakugou finished for him and he nodded. "Does All for One know?" He asked after a moment of silence. "That Toshi gave his power to you?"
"He knows," he muttered and looked down at Koji, his finger clutched in his tiny fist. "He may not act soon, but eventually he'll come after me." He swallowed when he looked back up at Bakugou, "I'm not ready yet, Kacchan. I still can't use One For All at one hundred percent. There is no way that I can beat him and Toshi-"
"I know," he whispered, putting a hand on his arm. "Keep your voice down, he's in your room."
"What?" Izuku squeaked feeling panic start to set in as he jumped up and paced the living room, baby still sleeping in his arms. "What am I supposed to say to him?" He demanded under his breath. "All Might gave up the last of his power to put him in jail and I just let him escape!"
"It can't all have been for nothing."
"Izuku," he blinked when Bakugou grabbed his arm. He felt him still, letting his erratic heart slow as he stared him down. "You don't have to tell him anything tonight," he hissed at him. "You need to sleep," he told him firmly. "You're in shock. You need to sleep so that you can process this. We can both talk to Toshi in the morning. Okay?" Izuku let out a breath that he didn't know he had been holding in. He nodded. "C'mon." Bakugou pulled him down the hallway toward his room.
Izuku gave him the baby and Bakugou gave him a pair of lounge pants. He took a shower and changed as Bakugou pulled the playpen into the room and settled Koji down into it.
"You can sleep with me," he said without looking up at Izuku. "The couch sucks and you'll be up all night. Just don't get any ideas." He sniffed at him and Izuku rolled his eyes as they climbed into bed.
It was cold. The weather was starting to wane and Izuku had been out all day with his nerves on high. He scooted closer to Bakugou as he pulled the blanket up to his chin.
"Izuku," he warned him in a whisper.
"You're warm." He breathed, his forehead tucked against Bakugou's shoulder. He didn't say anything when Izuku wrapped an arm around his waist and Bakugou scooted back slightly so that his back was flush with Izuku's chest.
A hand on his shoulder woke him, Izuku felt his quirk flare up unconsciously as he turned out to grab whoever had touched his shoulder. Toshi was there, eyes wide as he watched him, and just as quickly as it came, One For All settled back into him. Izuku blinked and looked down at Bakugou, they hadn't moved from how they'd fallen asleep the night before. He felt his cheeks flush, but Toshi didn't say a thing. He tilted his chin toward the door and left the room.
It took a minute for Izuku to extract himself from Bakugou, their legs tangled slightly but he barely stirred when he got out of the bed. He stopped in his room to grab a shirt and pulled it on as he met Toshi in the kitchen. His mentor pushed him a glass of tea and Izuku slid it slowly so that it sat in front of him. He cleared his throat. "That...that wasn't what it-"
Toshi shook his head. "I know." He waved a hand and pushed it aside. "How are you feeling?"
Izuku looked down at his tea. "I'm fine."
"It's okay to be afraid."
"I'm not," he insisted and smiled at him. He knew that Toshi could tell it was his work smile but he didn't say anything. "We always assumed this would happen eventually. We have been training. Hopefully we have a little time."
"What percent are you at?" Toshi asked, trying to seem cavalier.
Izuku's smiled wavered slightly. "Eighty five. I've pushed ninety, but fractured my wrist before the fight was over. I haven't even cracked the top twenty in hero ranks." He took a sip of the tea when his throat felt tight. "It's not enough. If he attacks right away…" they didn't continue.
Koji giggled from the other room and Bakugou was carrying him into the living room as he babbled at him.
After a fight over Bakugou not wanting to leave Koji to their parents all week, he agreed to stay home with Koji so that Izuku could work with the police on finding All For One before he got too far. It was grueling work that went unrewarded as he dragged himself home every day late in the afternoon without any progress. He worked all hours every day for two weeks until Bakugou found him passed out at the kitchen sink and forced him back to bed.
Izuku had no idea how long he slept, but when he woke up, Koji was sitting next to him patting his face while telling Izuku to shush.
"Koji, no," Bakugou hissed at him as he pulled him off the bed but sighed when he saw Izuku grinning at them. "Sorry. Put the brat down for two seconds." He shrugged clearly very proud of how fast their son could move. "Dinner's almost finished. So get up, I know you haven't eaten."
Izuku followed Bakugou into the living room, accepting Koji when he passed him over to grab their food. Koji had already eaten, a little smudge of whatever it was on his cheek. Izuku licked his thumb and wiped it off as Bakogou placed the bowl in front of him. Koji held a fist of Izuku's hair while they ate and Bakugou told him about the day he'd had at the office and what his dad had done with Koji. He listened for when things got bad, anxiety still clutching at him, but it had been just as uneventful as the day before and the one before that.
"You can't keep doing this," Bakugou said finally. "I know we have to find him. But you aren't on your own. And… Koji needs you." He stabbed at a hunk of meat in his bowl. "So cool it and let me help you."
They sat quietly watching whatever movie had just come onto the screen as they finished eating. Koji was asleep on his shoulder now, still holding his hair and they had sat back against the cushions. Izuku couldn't remember the last time they were all together and relaxed. He sighed, and closed his eyes, letting his head fall onto Bakugou's shoulder.
"I'm sorry," he breathed. Bakugou didn't say anything, but he felt his arm wrap over his shoulders before he drifted off.
"Kooooooooji," he replied with a yawn as he turned over. Koji was standing next to his bed. He didn't look impressed with the response he'd gotten. He'd been grumpy for the past few weeks. It had been a few months since All For One's escape. Things had mostly gone back to normal, but while their original goal of moving in together was to get Katsuki off the night shift that hadn't happened. Izuku was still worried about where the villain was, and Katsuki didn't like the idea of leaving Koji with their parents and something happening. So he'd never brought up changing shifts and Izuku hadn't either. It was working better. He actually got to sleep. Most of the time.
"Up." Koji lifted his arms into the air. He must be tired if he wasn't clawing his way into the bed himself. Katsuki grabbed his arms and pulled him up. Koji crawled over and plopped down on him.
"You sleepy?" he asked. Koji mumbled against his chest. He couldn't tell if it was his normal babbling or a few of the words he was finally starting to say. "Where's Cow?"
"No Cow!" Koji whined.
"What did he do this time?"
Koji ranted his complaints into his shirt. Katsuki looked up when he heard the door creak. Izuku looked guilty before pushing the door the rest of the way open. He pointed to the ball of righteous fury laying on his chest and raised an eyebrow.
"Didn't want to take his bath." Izuku sat down on the edge of the bed. "He climbed out of his crib again."
"We're raising an escape artist."
"Don't look so proud of that," Izuku admonished. "Maybe I could ask Hatsume to rig something up."
"No," he said. Koji peeked up.
"Because she hates me. She'll end up making an electric crib."
"She doesn't hate you." He noticed Izuku didn't deny the electric crib.
"She welded my pins in place," he offered.
"I remember that." Izuku laughed and Koji turned to him. "That was forever ago. I'm sure she's over whatever you did." Izuku yawned, he could see the day starting to wear on him.
"Okay. Time for a bath," Katsuki said and sat up. Koji shouted no.
"You never did tell me what you did," Izuku pressed while testing the water. They'd worked out a system for when Koji was being exceptionally stubborn. Katsuki distracted him with sparkles or one of his toys, while Izuku rushed through washing him. It had taken a few tries to get it down.
"I turned her down," he mumbled waving the rubber duck in front of Koji. The boy glared at him. He glared back and booped him on the nose with the duck. That got a giggle and a splash that hit Izuku's face.
"She asked you out?"
"She liked my grenades. She just wanted inside them. Didn't feel like getting dissected for tech." Izuku focused on washing Koji's hair. The boy made sure that they both knew how much he didn't want them to keep going. He smiled as Izuku kept calmly talking to Koji. Ignoring his shouts. "And I liked someone else already."
Izuku froze and sprayed Koji in the face which turned into a full fledged tantrum. They both ended up soaked. He took Koji so Izuku could change. Koji sat on his bed and watched him search for another shirt. He could see how hard he was fighting to stay awake. He pulled it on as Izuku walked in.
"No Cow!" Koji shouted. He saw the flash of hurt on Izuku's face.
"Yes Cow. He's going to sleep with us tonight." He climbed back into his bed and settled Koji down in the middle. He pat the pillow next to him. Izuku shrugged and settled down. Koji grumbled, but eventually scooted over and grabbed Izuku's hair.
"No bye Cow."
"I think you're working too much again," he said. Izuku looked wrecked when he looked up at him. "You know he gets grumpy when you're not around. He misses you."
"I know." Izuku watched Koji as he drifted off. Koji's quiet snores filled the silence between them.
"You know that you can say no to people's requests right?"
"I know that. But," Izuku frowned and pulled Koji's fingers from his hair.
"You forget it when they are asking."
"I want to help them."
"You can't help everybody. Let them help themselves sometimes."
"Didn't you fail your licensing exam for that reason?"
"You ever going to let that go?" Katsuki snapped. He knew his glare wasn't working when Izuku laughed and ducked his face against the pillow to muffle a yawn. "I have to leave in an hour, do you want me to put him back in his crib before I go?"
"No. I think we'll be okay. I always find him in here anyway," Izuku replied through a yawn.
He checked that his alarm was on vibrate and set it on his pillow before kissing Koji's head and closing his eyes. There were nights like this when he wondered if it wouldn't be so bad to tell Izuku about how the quirk had really worked.
"I miss you too," he whispered.
A couple weeks before Koji's second birthday he woke up to see Izuku frantically racing around the apartment while Koji watched one of the AllPop movies. He sat down behind him and watched Izuku.
"Do you know where my red tie is?" He shrugged and pointed off to the rooms. "Thanks. That's helpful."
"Why do you need a tie?" Katsuki asked. Koji shouted when AllPop got hit. He rubbed his back, mumbling a few reassuring words.
"I have a date."
"W-what?" he choked out.
"I told you last week."
"No. You didn't."
"I swear I did. But anyway yeah. I ran into Shinsou on my way home and he asked if I wanted to get dinner."
"Who the fuck is Shinsou?"
Koji started chanting fuck.
"Nice, Kacchan." Izuku walked back in with one of his ties, he knew it was his from the tiny skull on the bottom. "He went to UA with us."
The intercom buzzed. "That's him. I have to go. Bye," Izuku kissed Koji and ruffled his hair. He waved as he grabbed his keys and ran out the door.
"Fuck," he groaned and fell back. Koji crawled over and looked down at him. "Don't say that word. It's a bad word." He held his finger over his mouth and Koji did the same.
"Fuck!" Koji said cheerfully.
"Yeah. You're not going to stop saying that are you?" Koji just smiled at him. "I didn't think so. Let's go see if your grandma knows how to fix this."
His mom just laughed when he walked in and Koji shouted his new word at her.
"Oh son," his dad said taking Koji. "There goes his vocabulary."
He listened to his parents tell stories about his younger years and the surprise lessons that they'd given him. It was his dad surprisingly that taught him his first curse word. His mom had looked proud when she'd told that story. After dinner he watched while Koji played with a few of the toys that stayed there.
"Not complaining. I always want to see that kid, but what are you doing over here?" His mom asked.
He shrugged. He hadn't wanted to be at the apartment. The silence stretched and he knew they were waiting for a better response. "Izuku's out on a date. Oh. Don't look at me like that," he snapped.
"I thought for sure that you two-"
He leaned forward and leaned on his knees. "We're not. We raise Koji together and run the agency. That's it."
He felt the warm grip on his shoulders. He looked up at his dad. "Do you want ice cream?"
"What kind of a question is that?" he answered. Koji was already walking over with a huge smile on his face. "We always want ice cream."
Shinsou was tall. He had been tall when they were at UA as well, but Izuku had never stopped to notice before. He had seen him a few times when they were still there, nodded to each other in the hallway, but other than that the most interaction they had was at the sports festival in their first year. Izuku thought the name on his application was familiar but it didn’t click until he stepped into Izuku’s office dressed for the interview.
He had just about gotten over the shock of seeing him when he asked him to go out, and before Izuku could even really process the question-- he agreed.
“So you are going out with him again?” Bakugo asked looking less than thrilled about it as Koji slapped his hand into his peas, sending them flying into Izuku’s hair.
Izuku sighed and tried, again, to get him to take a bite of chicken. “Yes,” he said trying not to sound too defensive about it. “He was nice. He’s really changed since high school. Said he had been meaning to get in contact with me for a long time.”
“Of course he has," Bakugo grumbled, his back to them now as he went back to the dishes. “You’re the most powerful hero since freaking All Might. Everyone from high school is probably dying to get into your pants.”
“Pants?” Koji repeated with an innocent blink that completely destroyed Izuku.
He held up a spoonful of peas to him and he took a bite, “Pants.” he agreed with him before he turned on Bakugou. “And he doesn’t want in my pants," he huffed feeling his face burning red. “He likes me, we had a good time.”
Bakugo snorted. “You kicked his ass once when you were fifteen and he’s had a boner for you ever since.”
“Bo Bone!” Koji shrieked and opened his mouth for his reward.
Izuku frowned at the peas and scooped more up to appease his son. “Yes, bo bone. Dada is a bo bone head.” he told him and Koji laughed, pushing green mush through his little teeth and he grinned. “But we loved Dada. Right? We love that bo bone head?”
“No!” Koji yelled back.
Izuku grinned at him. He finished feeding Koji and got him all wiped up before he pulled him out of the chair. Bakugo was watching them unhappily when they turned back to him, and for the second time in the last few weeks his stomach rolled over. If Izuku was being honest, he had no interest in dating. He had only accepted Shinsou’s invitation because he had heard Bakugo whisper that he missed him. And with everything that was going on with them living together and Koji and the stress of waiting for All For One to attack, Izuku had been too afraid to admit that he missed him too. He softened a little to the sour expression. “If you don’t want me to date him, I won’t," he told him easily. “You and Koji are what’s most important to me, you know that.”
And something about Bakugo shifted. His glare dropped but he didn’t stop frowning at him. “No, it’s fine. Let’s get Koji in the bath before he loses it.”
“I feel like all of these movies are the same,” Shinsou said over the chattering of the crowd as they walked out of the theater. They had just seen the newest hero epic about Lemillion and Suneater and Izuku felt pumped. It was almost as good as the old All Might movies that had come out when he was a kid. Almost anyway. He had made Shinsou watch a few of them on their third or fourth date, but he hadn’t been all that interested and kept distracting him with his hands. “How many times can you tell the same story and expect the hero to come out on top.”
“We live in a super human society.” Izuku shook his head at him not understanding his train of thought. “You work as a hero, how can you even think that?”
Shinsou thought about that for a moment. “I guess I’ve seen too much bad in battle to think that life just works out like that. Heroes don’t always win. Villains aren’t always evil.” He shrugged. “I honestly don’t understand why you like it so much.”
“That’s fine,” Izuku said easily and took his hand as they walked back towards the train. “I don’t expect you to like everything I like. But thank you for watching it with me.”
Shinso smiled when Izuku stood on his toes to kiss him. “Anytime.”
“What happened to you?” Bakugo demanded when he carried Koji out of the back, all dressed in his new birthday outfit that Izuku’s mom had gotten for him. He set Koji down and he waddled proudly over to Izuku in his green overalls, clapping at what a mess he was. He had spent the better part of an hour decorating their apartment with All Might stuff and now he was covered in tape and glitter and string.
“All Pop!” Koji said in delight as he reached for Izuku to pick him up. “Cow up!” he demanded.
Bakugo ran up behind him before he could grab him. “Nope, you aren’t getting that mess all over him,” he told Izuku and pointed back towards the hallway. “Go change. You have frosting on your face.”
Izuku didn’t argue. He left them in the living room and went to take a shower and changed into a glitter free pair of jeans and a sweater. Toshi had arrived when he made it back to the living room and he was looking around a little baffled. “What's this?” he asked as Koji giggled happily from his shoulders pulling at his hair.
“You’re his favorite thing,” Bakugo said it like it was annoying but he was smiling at Koji. “Won’t shut up about you. It’s like watching Izuku’s life in flashback.”
“I wasn’t that bad,” he said completely red faced, but of course Izuku’s mother came in next and blew that statement right out of the water when she proudly exclaimed that she found Izuku’s old All Might costume. Koji demanded to be in it immediately.
Katsuki had caved and let Izuku invite anyone he wanted. "It's his first birthday party," he'd said with those same eyes that Koji used any time he did something bad. He knew he was weak against them, but didn't know how to change that. So their family, half of their class from UA, and two of the kids Koji had gotten along with from their building were there. Koji chased after Todoroki's daughter. He wasn't sure what game they were playing, but they seemed to enjoy hugging each other and running away. He watched them from the kitchen, he'd needed a break from the crowd, and couldn't help but laugh as the floppy bits of the All Might costume bounced in the air.
"Fatherhood suits you," Todoroki said leaning against the counter next to him.
"Doesn't hurt that I got the best kid." He looked over to his former rival. "But thanks. Does it ever feel like you know what you're doing?"
Todoroki chuckled and jolted when he got hit by the over eager pair. Koji plopped back onto the ground. But he was climbing to his feet and chasing after his new friend before Katsuki could react.
"It's a bit like hero work. You and Midoriya figured that out. You'll figure this out too."
"Yeah. It's gotten easier-" He realized what Todoroki had implied a second too late and looked over to him. Some of his panic must have shown because Todoroki smirked.
"Don't worry. I don't think anyone else knows. But Midoriya is easy to read. He loves that boy too much for it to be a friend's son. Even yours."
Koji shrieked 'Cow' and jumped into Izuku's lap. The pout on the young Todoroki while Koji smirked down at her from the safety of his dad's lap was enough to have him snorting a laugh. Izuku kept talking to Kirishima while holding onto Koji.
"Have you told him yet?" Todoroki asked.
"What? Yeah, he knows Koji's his."
"That's not what I meant. You're easy to read as well." He looked over to Todoroki. The smirk was gone, but he still looked like he was enjoying whatever knowledge he thought he had.
"Cake!" he shouted and grabbed the All Pop themed cake off the counter. The entire apartment lit up when he walked out of the kitchen to avoid whatever conversation Todoroki was trying to initiate. He set down the cake and made Kirishima move so he could sit down next to Izuku. Koji sat forward staring at the candles on his cake. They'd thought about sparklers, but Koji still reached for his hands most of the time and it hadn't seemed like a good idea.
They sang him happy birthday and Koji clapped in delight. He watched Izuku lean forward with Koji, coaching him on how to blow out the candles and hoped that no one was looking at him because he knew he wasn't hiding how much he loved the pair in front of him. His chest had never felt so full. Koji sputtered out spit filled bursts of air and managed to blow out one, Izuku swiftly blew out the other and cheered for the boy. Everyone clapped. After cake was handed out Izuku handed Koji over.
"You should get some cake time," Izuku said with a shrug. He rolled his eyes as Koji grabbed handfuls of cake and shoved it in his mouth. He got most of it in his mouth, which was more than he'd hoped for. "I think Dada wants some cake," Izuku said and Koji turned around and looked at him with wide eyes.
"Oh no buddy. I'm good. It's yours."
"Cake." Koji grabbed another handful and shoved it into his mouth. Katsuki smiled at Izuku with the mouthful of smushed cake. And noticed the camera.
"I think Dada loves it," Izuku said with a laugh.
"It's really good. Why don't we let Cow try some?" He grabbed another slice and Koji grabbed a handful. Izuku darted up and Koji chased him. He followed his son.
"No murdering anyone at a kid's birthday party," Kirishima called after him. He resisted the urge to flip him off. He was a role model now, dammit.
His mom walked into the kitchen a few minutes later while he was sitting on Izuku's chest as Koji fed him cake. "I think it might be time for presents?" Koji smeared another handful of cake on Izuku's face. He chuckled when Izuku struggled under him.
"Yeah okay," he got to his feet. "You better delete those pictures."
"It's already my background," his mom said and showed him her phone. He looked down at Izuku, honestly a little impressed. He hadn't seen him send it.
"It was a really good photo," Izuku said with a shrug. He grabbed Koji's fingers and they walked back into the living room ahead of Izuku and Mitsuki as they twittered about the photo.
After the third Deku onesie he was starting to think that they'd planned it. Izuku's entire face was red as Koji chanted Cow and shoved the fabric into his lap with the others. His dad got them another enormous bag of clothes. He swore he'd been hoarding them. They got a box of books from the Todoroki's. Izuku looked like he was going to cry when he pulled out the first one. The next one was a toy with a lot of lights so they let the kids play with that for a bit. He elbowed Izuku.
"'M fine. It's just- My dad used to read me that," he said and smiled. It was wobbly and Katsuki hated it, like he hated all of Izuku's forced smiles.
"Then you'll read it to Koji. Make better memories."
Izuku leaned against him in a silent thank you. They opened a few of the gifts while Koji was still playing with his new robot toy.
After the party ended Inko hugged Izuku for a while. He accepted the hugs from his parents and Inko when she was done with Izuku.
"I don't know what we're going to do with three more Deku onesies," he said as he folded them and put them in the drawer with the two he already had. With the two All Might ones in the hamper he realized, "He has one for every day."
"Less laundry," Izuku offered tossing him another shirt to fold. "So Anzu and Koji got along."
"But they won't be two forever."
"My son's not marrying a Todoroki."
"But Kacchan," he heard the whine in his voice. "They'll be so cute together."
"You keep saying that."
"Cause it's true."
He didn't bother responding. They wouldn't agree. He knew that. Izuku knew that. But it was also the only argument they had now that didn't feel like it would threaten everything they'd created. Izuku left the room with a pleased smirk like he'd won something.
"I'm going out on Friday," he said during one of their brief exchanges. Izuku was half asleep, but perked up.
"On a date? With who?"
"Nah, just Kirishima and the rest of the gang."
"Oh," Izuku said sounding almost relieved.
When Friday came he realized that he was still looking forward to it. The week had been long, but it had been a while since he'd gotten out of the house for more than a grocery run.
"How've you been man?"
"Busy." They all looked at him while he read the menu. He set it down slowly when he noticed the silence. "What?"
"We haven't seen you in a month and ask we get is busy?"
"Pictures dude. Tell us about Koji."
He pulled out his phone and showed a few pictures, then a few more. The next thing he knew they'd talked about Koji for most of the night.
"So Midoriya's dating Shinsou?" Kaminari asked.
"Yeah. About four months now."
"That has to be weird."
It was. But Izuku seemed happy. When he'd come home from the Lemillion movie he'd been so pumped up that he had spoiled the entire thing for Katsuki as he raved about it. It reminded him of how they'd been in school, Izuku didn't look like he always had the weight of the world on his shoulders. The only weird part really, had happened a few days before. Izuku had asked if he could have Shinsou over to the apartment and let him meet Koji. He swore that he hadn't told Shinsou much about Koji. But they had argued anyway. When it really came down to it though Katsuki realized that he couldn't really stop Izuku. It was half his house, it was his son too. And they weren't together.
"Nah. It's whatever," he grumbled and they moved on. He got back earlier than he expected. Koji would probably still be up. When he pushed open the door he could hear Koji's excited babbles, but didn't hear Izuku talking back like he normally did. He stepped around the corner and saw Shinsou sitting on the couch watching some show, that definitely wasn't appropriate for a two year old who copied any word he heard. Koji was kneeling on the couch talking excitedly at him. Half of his words were mumbles, but he could hear All Pop thrown in every few words.
"Be quiet and go play." He watched Koji's face go blank and he crawled off the couch.
"What the heck?" Katsuki snapped. "Did you just use your quirk on him?" He picked Koji up and looked at him. He was blinking and as his eyes focused he started crying, clutching onto his shirt with trembling fists. "Where is Deku?"
"He went to get the laundry. He didn't say that you were his roommate. Must be pretty sweet. He watches your brat, does your laundry? What else does he do for you?"
"Get out." Koji was still wailing in his arms. He tucked him closer against his chest. Shinsou stood up slowly. He looked at them and smirked.
"Is that jealously I see?" Shinsou scoffed. "You know you're not good enough for him."
"Neither are you, but that's his decision. Now get the fuck out of my house."
Koji's cries quieted after a few minutes, but his grip on his shirt didn't. He flipped the TV back to the All Might movie Izuku must have left on and sat on the couch. Koji stayed tucked up against him, but he could see him watching the movie. He kept rubbing his back trying to think if he'd overreacted or not. Then wondering if Izuku would believe him if he told him what happened. The door slammed open. He looked up and Koji started crying again. Izuku's anger dimmed a little at that, but he still looked pissed.
Bakugo didn't offer him an explanation and he didn't seem interested in talking about it. So he folded their laundry in silence as they watched the movie he'd been watching with Shinso wondering why he felt so relieved all of a sudden. It wasn't like things hadn't been going well with Shinso and Koji. He'd played with them and genuinely seemed like he was as taken with the kid as everyone else. So when he found him in the hallway and he told Izuku he'd been chased out by that hot head, Izuku had been mad. But he hadn't been mad at Bakugo. Shinso had made it sound like he should be-- but he wasn't. Izuku was upset that Koji seemed upset. And when Shinso had called Bakugo a hot head… he was going to have to have a talk with him.
He didn't have the chance to do it that week. Their date they'd planned for Sunday got cut off at the very beginning when an anamorphic villain derailed a train. Izuku had spent the entire night at the hospital with detectives trying to get a good sketch of the guy and he was scolded by Bakugo when he came home past midnight covered in grime and holding his dead phone.
The league made their first attack the day after. Izuku has been asleep when he got the call. He barely managed to pull Koji's hand out of his hair to get out of bed and throw his clothes on before he met Bakugo in the living room. He had just gotten off shift. "What is it?" He asked when Izuku handed the still sleeping Koji over to him.
"The league," he told him and nodded when he frowned. "I know." He agreed. The league had disbanded after highschool when Izuku had managed to take out Tomura Shigaraki. The rest of them had scattered and it had been four years without movement. Four years of nothing.
"Let's take Koji to your moms," Bakugo told him.
Izuku shook his head. "You just got home. You have to be exhausted-"
"Izuku," he blinked and looked up at him. "I don't want you to go after them by yourself."
He took Bakugo's hand and squeezed it. "I won't be alone. Shouto got a call too. It'll be fine," he promised under his breath. "I promise that I'll call you as soon as we get to the bottom of it, okay?"
He probably should have let him come. If he had, he would have been able to warn Izuku before he took a knife between his ribs from Toga and she ran away laughing. They only managed to catch two of the five that attacked, a couple of small times that he'd never seen before. The rest were out of there before Izuku even collapsed from blood loss. If he had let Bakugou come, they probably would have caught them. If he had let him come, he wouldn't be pacing the lobby shouting at the nurses as Izuku limped out, almost back to normal.
The ride home was mostly silent, but he could feel the rage building in Bakugou as punched the button on the elevator and they rode up their apartment. He managed to nod and pay the girl that lived down the hall who offered to stay with Koji while Bakugou came to get him, but as soon as the door shut her out, he was furious.
"What were you thinking?" He demanded. "It's one thing to run around recklessly when it's just you-- but we have a kid, Deku! What the fuck do you think would happen if you didn't come home?"
"I wasn't trying to get stabbed!" He shot back, his face feeling hot. "And I'm fine. It wasn't as bad as it could have been-"
"That doesn't make it okay."
"Well what do you expect, Katsuki?" He demanded. "All Might gave me his power, I have to use it. I owe it to the world to use it. I can't just retire because we have a son, as appealing as that seems sometimes. What happens when All For One finally attacks?" Bakugou watched him silently as he rubbed at his eyes feeling exhausted. "I'm sorry that I scared you. But I can't just stop. I have to do this."
"I know that." Bakugo snapped at him, but he didn't seem any more at ease.
Izuku didn't know what to say to him, but he hated this. They hadn't had a real fight in weeks and he hated that this was what it was about. He reached out to him and Bakugo flinched away. So he reached out again and this time, he let Izuku grab his arm. "Why don't we take some time off?" He offered. Bakugou looked at him like he was crazy. "Just a few days. We don't have to go anywhere, we can just stay here with Koji. Take a break from everything else."
Bakugou stared at him and he could see the steam melting out of him but he wasn't ready to let go. "You take time off, I'll keep the agency running after the league. You've been running yourself into the ground, I'm surprised you didn't get stabbed sooner." He stepped out of Izuku's touch and turned back to him threateningly. "But I swear to god, if I so much as see you at a crime scene-"
"I get it," he told him holding his hands up in surrender. "Three days."
"A week," Bakugou corrected him and glared when Izuku made a face but he knew better than to argue with him.
He left his phone unplugged and slept harder than he had in what felt like a year. He only woke up when Koji squeezed his nose and whispered. "Cow?" Over his face. He didn't move and Koji squeezed his nose again. "Cooow?" He asked louder and Izuku faked a big yawn before he wrapped Koji up in his arms and pulled him down next to him as he rolled over him shrieking in laughter. He was in the middle of a vicious kiss attack when Bakugou opened the door already dressed for his first day shift in almost a year. "Dada!" He yelled and smacked a huge kiss on Izuku's cheek. He pretended it was a punch and made a big show of dying.
"Cow no!" Koji yelled and hit his little hand on his chest.
Izuku winced a little when it was closer to his stitches than he anticipated. Bakugou stepped in and grabbed his little hand before he could do it again. "Careful," he told him. "We have to be careful with Daddy. Daddy was very stupid and hurt himself last night." He hummed and nodded when Koji looked up at him with big eyes. "He has ouchies."
"Daddy ouchies?" He repeated. Izuku sat up blinking at him. Koji's lip bobbled and he reached for Izuku but didn't touch him. "No ouchies Daddy."
He looked up at Bakugou to confirm that he wasn't making this up, but he seemed just as baffled. "Daddy's okay," he promised and lifted up his shirt slightly so that he could see the bandage, careful not to look at Bakugou. He had always been self conscious about his scars. "Small ouch," he told him and Koji's lip stopped trembling. Izuku took his hand and put it carefully on the bandaid. "You have to be soft." He let go of his hand and let Koji keep his there.
"Soft," he repeated. Bakugou let him go.
They ate breakfast together and Izuku held Koji on his hip as Bakugou kissed him goodbye. They met eyes for a moment and he felt his stomach fall out. For a moment he felt like he might kiss him too. But instead Bakugou's eyes went a little soft and he said, "Bye," and left them to it.
The week he spent with Koji was almost enough to make him want to give up everything else. They went to the park and visited all of his grandparents and Koji tried to help him and All Might cook. Izuku wasn’t allowed to train while his stitches healed and Bakugou refused to let him do almost anything when he was home even though he was clearly exhausted. They got in an almost routine. Breakfast together. Then the park, lunch with grandparents and nap time. Then they would start dinner before Bakugou came home. He knew that he was forgetting something when Shinsou showed up at the apartment four days into his sabbatical looking at him like he was insane.
"You got stabbed and you didn't tell me?" He demanded and pushed his way into the apartment. "I've been calling you for days."
"Sorry." He shook some of the shock out of his head. "I'm on sabbatical from work and I haven't plugged in my phone." Shinsou shot him a look. "I know, I'm sorry." He repeated.
Shinsou took a deep breath and held his face between his hands, really looking him over. "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine." He reassured him. "I'm actually better than I've been in a while. I'm sleeping for once and I've gotten to spend more time with Koji."
"Daddy!" He yelled from his room as if he'd been cued and he smiled and slipped out of his reach to grab him out of his crib.
"Wanna say hi to my friend?" He asked when he brought Koji back into the room. He was still sleepy and hid in Izuku's neck when he saw Shinsou. "You remember Shinsou, right?"
Shinsou forced a smile at Koji but it didn't last long. His eyes were hard when he looked up at Izuku. "He's calling you Daddy now?"
"It's new." Izuku told him as he rubbed Koji's back. He tucked his face into Izuku's neck and grumbled. "I'm sure it'll be different next week." He tried to brush it off but almost hoped it wouldn't change. As endearing as it had been to be called Cow, being Daddy was… everything.
"Yeah… maybe." He followed Izuku into the living when he went to sit on the couch. "But, don't you think it's kind of weird that your roommates kid is calling you Daddy?"
He blinked at Shinsou feeling a little prickle in the back of his neck. "No." He said even though every part of him wanted to say more.
"Well what does Bakugou think?" Shinsou demanded.
"It's sweet." He hissed under his breath, ignoring the question. Koji's breathing going slow and heavy again and he didn't want to wake him up. "And what does it matter what he thinks?"
"C'mon Izuku, you can't possibly be that stupid." He huffed out a sigh when Izuku just stared at him. "Bakugo has a thing for you. It's painfully obvious. And here you are just feeding this fantasy by the pair of you playing house. And I'm not sure I want my boyfriend catering to some other guys needs all the fucking time."
"Fuck." He heard Koji mutter sleepily and he sighed, standing up. His mind was made up. The choice painfully easy.
"I think you should go."
Bakugou stomped in a few hours later looking like he'd had a day. Koji was napping and Izuku was standing in the kitchen at the sink with their first aid kit, dabbing at his stitches with peroxide. He rushed to pull his shirt down but Bakugou told him he was stupid and pulled it back up. "What happened?" He asked, tapping the counter and Izuku jumped up so he could take over.
"Koji slipped off the couch, kicked me when I caught him." He explained. Bakugou grunted and pulled Izuku's shirt off so it would stop falling in the way. Izuku could feel his face heating as he watched Bakugou doctoring his wound so carefully that he could hardly feel it. And before he could stop it he was thinking about was Shinsou said. Bakugo has a thing for you. But surely that wasn't true. They had been living together for nearly a year. If he had feelings for Izuku he would have noticed. Wouldn't he?
He put a new bandage over his wound and stood back, smirking at him. "You break anything else while I was gone?"
He laughed and sighed as he pushed off the counter. "I… broke my relationship." He offered and laughed again when Bakugou stared at him. "I'm fine." He promised.
"You know, he didn't like All Might Movies?"
"And he was too tall. I had to stand on my toes to talk to him."
He sighed and grabbed his shirt off the counter. "It didn't work out." He said simply. "And I…" he hesitated. "I was always comparing him to someone else." Bakugou met his eyes for the smallest of moments before Izuku offered him a shy smile and walked down the hall to his room.
Katsuki watched Izuku walk off. He put away the kit and looked down the hall. He couldn't have been--
He let the cabinet shut and headed after Izuku. His door was cracked, like it always was. He hesitated. If he was wrong… He pushed open the door. Izuku looked up at him from the end of his bed where he was twisting one of Koji's shirts in his hands.
"Who is it?"
"What?" Izuku asked.
"Who were you comparing him to?"
Izuku tilted his head and smiled at him. He took a few more steps into the room. "Who do I compare everyone to?"
"Izuku," he warned. He couldn't make a mistake here. They couldn't screw this up.
"It's you, you idiot."
He stepped up close, knees on either side of Izuku's and looked down at him. Izuku tilted his head back. "Kacch-" He slid his fingers through Izuku's hair and held him in place as he bent to kiss him. Izuku leaned back and Katsuki followed him down. Kissing Izuku was nothing like he thought it'd be. He thought it would be a clash of tongues, a battle like everything else in their life was. Instead Izuku tilted his head beneath his hands while Katsuki's thumbs brushed over his jaw as he held him close. Izuku's hands trailed down his sides, over his hips. He broke the kiss with a choked off noise. Izuku's hands were off him in an instant. "Sorry."
He shook his head. "No. Don't be." He pressed a kiss to the corner of his lips. "Surprised me." His fingers slid further into Izuku's hair as he kissed a trail over his jaw down his neck. Izuku's hands were back on him. Pulling at his back, gripping his hips, ghosting beyond then back up to keep him on a spot on his neck as he moaned. He pulled back to watch for a second and Izuku's face ignited. His hand came up and he covered his eyes.
"What are you staring at?"
He pulled his hand down. "You. Always you." Izuku grabbed him by the back of the neck and pulled him in. Izuku's hands were warm on his back as they snaked under his shirt and up his spine.
"Dadaa!" Koji screeched. He'd never heard him sound like that before. He moved to get off the bed, but Izuku was gone in a flash of green and he was left sitting on his ass staring at the open door. He got to his feet, but Izuku was back holding Koji before he could get any further.
"I think he just had a bad dream," Izuku said.
"What percent did you just use?" he asked taking Koji before he launched himself from Izuku's arms to get to him.
"I don't know. I wasn't paying attention."
"It's okay baby," he told Koji and let him hug his neck. He sat back down on Izuku's bed. As Koji's whimpers settled Izuku pulled him down and they moved around until Koji was settled between them. He watched Izuku tuck the blankets around him and Koji reach up and grab Izuku's hair as he closed his eyes.
"We should talk," Izuku whispered.
"Tomorrow," he said stifling a yawn.
We finished this story before either of us were caught up in the manga, so the Shinsou stuff us a littl off-- but it didn't feel important to change it. Thanks for reading!
Katsuki woke to a panicked phone call. They'd gotten a call from another agency asking for help, but the girl didn't know who could help. He sighed and told her to send him the details that he would handle it. He showered quickly and got changed. Izuku stirred when he walked back in the room.
"Where are you going?" Izuku slurred.
"Agency called. I'll be back." He kissed Koji, who whined and smacked at his face in his sleep. Then kissed Izuku. "Bye."
"Stay safe," Izuku whispered with a smile.
He should have known those two words were a signal of something to come.
"Hello again." He pushed off the wall, dodging the blade that came for him. "I was wondering when we'd get to see you." Himiko giggled and he ran. He could hear some of the other heroes fighting in the distance, but he'd gotten one of his blasts reflected back at him and had ended up getting knocked nearly two blocks from the main fight. He was pretty sure that his shoulder was dislocated and it hurt to breathe. He didn't want to think about the grinding of his ribs as he ran. He turned a corner and clipped a dumpster. He grunted when his shoulder hit the metal. It was definitely dislocated.
"Frick," he hissed. He threw a blast back, but Himiko dodged it easily. She collided with him and every bump and bruise burst in pain as he hit the ground. Her boot came down on his injured arm, pinning it to the ground as her other knee dug into his chest.
"Oh. What happened to you?" She leaned over him with that incessant grin. "Didn't you used to be the strong one?"
"Fuck you," he spat. She looked startled for a moment. Then she grabbed one of her blades.
"Boss didn't say anything about keeping you alive this time. We're going to have fun." Her smile widened as she leaned over him. He heard the woosh of a familiar quirk and Himiko squeaked before jumping away as a torrent of flames rushed over him. He crawled up and toward Todoroki. "See you soon," Himiko called and waved before skipping off down an alley. Todoroki moved to chase her. Katsuki grabbed him and dropped to his knees, jarring his ribs.
"Maybe I should have taken the week off too," Katsuki offered when he walked in the apartment. The look on Izuku's face told him exactly how not funny he thought that was. Katsuki was in a sling and his ribs still ached when he took a deep breath, but the medics swore that was in his head, that the cracked bones had healed.
"Weren't you the one lecturing me just last week?" Izuku asked. "Did you think about what would happen if you didn't come home?"
"Yeah. I fucking did. So I ran. A lot of good that did me though." He stormed into the kitchen. "What do you want for dinner?" he snapped.
"What?" Izuku asked.
"I'm starving. What do you want for dinner?"
"Yes. Got my own fucking attack shot back at me by that damn rubber guy. Went through a wall. Don't miss that at all." He huffed out a laugh. "I was trying to figure out where I even was when that fucking crazy chick found me. So I ran. Couldn't really do much else with my arm fucked." He grabbed a pan and dropped it on the stove. The clatter echoed in the room. He could still hear Himiko's voice criticizing him. "Koji still not eating carrots?"
"Katsuki," Izuku said and grabbed his wrist.
"The league's orders changed." He looked at Izuku. "I'm no longer off limits."
"Last thing Himiko said before Todoroki showed up. Guess their new leader doesn't like me so much."
"New leader?" Izuku muttered, preoccupied enough to let go of Bakugo and let him move more freely about the kitchen. He left him there for a moment and went back to his room to the shelf filled with his notebooks and flipped through them until he found the cover that had League of Villains messily scrawled across it. He grabbed it and headed back into the kitchen. He set it on the table when he saw Bakugo wince as he kicked the fridge shut with his other arm full and pulled it away from him. "Let me do that," he told him and shooed him off.
"I already almost died once today," Bakugo reminded him but he must have been more wiped than he was letting on because he sat at the table with no other protest. Izuku set the package of chicken under running water and poured oil into the pan to let it heat up. He saw Bakugo shift through his notebook after he stared at the cover for a minute. "What is this?"
"My notes in the League." Izuku frowned and walked up behind him, flipping through the pages. "Shigaraki is still in his cell." A small ping of guilt hit him when he thought about the battle that had finally lead to his capture. "Without his quirk, All For One didn't have a use for him.”
“Unless he gives him a quirk.” Izuku looked at Bakugo and saw that he was frowning. “If they can get him out, All For One can give him whatever quirk he wants. He just has to take it.” His eyes met Izuku’s in a sudden question.
He shook his head. “He can’t take One For All," he told him and flipped through the pages again taking a mental tally on how many of the league were still out there and how many were still behind bars. “It has to be given. If it isn’t my choice, it can’t be taken-- but that means they will be looking for someone with a power that can match it.”
“Which means that all of the top heroes are in danger.”
They stared at each other for a minute, letting the weight of what they had just talked through settle between them. It seemed so far fetched, so silly to actually worry about. But he was worried. And he could see that Bakugo was too. “They were trying to kill me today," he said after the pregnant silence. “If they don’t care about me, that means they no longer want my quirk.” Izuku’s eyes had drifted back to the open notebook and he jumped when Bakugo squeezed his hand. “That’s a good thing," he urged him, trying to shake him out of his dread.
Izuku nodded slowly, and then again quicker as he shook it off. “We need to call Tsukauchi," he said finally. “Even if it’s far fetched, I would feel a lot better knowing that Shigaraki is still in his cell.”
Bakugo squeezed his hand again and pulled on it so that Izuku bent down enough for him to kiss. “I’ll call him. You cook," he said and pushed himself up with a groan of discomfort. Izuku watched him walk down the hall and disappear into his room before he pulled the chicken out from under the water and cut the package open.
He went back to work the next morning. Bakugo made a face when he told him that he was ending his sabbatical early, but he couldn’t do much to stop him in the state he was in. He spent most of the day with Tsukauchi going over the footage of what happened the night before. He winced when he watched Bakugo fly through a wall from the ricochet his own blast and fast forwarded to the rest of the fight. He saw a few faces that he recognized. Himiko, Twice and Spinner, who had escaped during the One For All outbreak, were all there with two recruits he didn’t recognize. Mustard was still in jail, as was Moonfish and Muscular. Most of the other’s had died, save for Dabi and Kurogiri, who were nowhere to be seen. That was the concerning part.
“We checked in on Shigaraki after the call last night,” Tosukauchi reassured him when they had gone over all of the footage. “He hasn’t moved. But he seemed like he was expecting the visit.”
Izuku frowned. “So he knows.” He rubbed at his eyes and sighed. “Or he is incredibly hopeful and naive.”
“For our sake, I hope it’s the latter.” Tsukauchi smiled at him as they shook hands. “We’ll keep in touch. First sight of any disturbance, you’ll be my first call.”
He tried to offer him a reassuring smile, but Izuku knew that with his quirk he would see right through it. “Thank you, Detective.”
Izuku was exhausted when he made it back home that evening. It was much later than he had intended but he had gotten more information than he had been able to go through in a few hours and ended up lost in the work until the office lights timed out. The apartment was already dark when he pushed into it, closing the door as quietly as he could behind him. He flipped on the kitchen lights and saw a sticky note on the microwave.
Eat and come to bed.
He felt the first real smile he’d had that day creep onto his lips as he opened the microwave and pulled out the leftovers from dinner. He ate and showered quickly, putting his hand on his door before he hesitated and walked back down the hall to Bakugou’s. The door was cracked open like always, just in case Koji came looking for him in the middle of the night. He pushed it open quietly and peeked inside to see Bakugou in bed with his back to him. He wasn’t sure what he should do. They hadn’t talked about anything yesterday, and even though everything felt different, nothing had really changed. But he stepped into the room anyway, pushing the door back to the way it was before he slipped into the bed, biting his lip as he fell into place behind him. Bakugou backed into him in an instant, pulling Izuku’s arm around him tightly. “You’re late,” he grumbled, only half conscious before he went silent and relaxed in Izuku's arms.
They slept together for the rest of the week. They didn’t talk about it, but whoever was down first, the other was in their bed in the morning. Izuku hadn’t even noticed how cold he had been until he was enveloped by the never ending warmth that was Bakugou. He woke up every morning feeling like he had been bathed in the sun.
Koji was delighted to see them together. He came in clapping almost every morning, but sometimes he would just pull himself up and crawl in between them so that he could steal some of that sun for himself. And Izuku was happy. He felt so bad for feeling happy with everything that was happening around them with All For One and the League, but Bakugou never let him sit in it for too long-- always drawing him out of his mind with soft touches that hadn’t been there before.
But there wasn’t much more of a difference. Izuku kept waiting for a switch to flip and for Bakugou to start acting strange. He had been so sure that he would be able to tell if he’d had feelings for him that when nothing changed he realised that Shinsou had been right. Bakugou had liked him, he just never noticed because it was just part of who he was. There was a comfort in that that Izuku never thought he would have, and now that he saw it, he had a hard time letting go.
He spent most of his days counting the minutes until he got home. Bakugo was still wrapped up and was starting to get a little stir crazy. He’d cleaned the entire apartment three times since he’d been in his sling and Koji had gotten his first haircut that made his curls stick out in odd and adorable angels. Izuku could tell that he was frustrated, but he always clamed down when Izuku got home, tucking into his side as he grumbled about his stupid day like holding his hand was recharging him. Izuku knew the feeling, but they continued to not say anything, enjoying their company and the bubble they had encased themselves in knowing that all too soon it would pop.
He took Bakugo to his doctor’s appointment about two weeks after the League attack. They took some x rays and checked his movement and deamed that he wouldn’t need the sling anymore. “But I still want you to take it easy," she told him very strictly. “Stick to paper work for a couple of days, and no extra curricular activities," she added looking between him and Izuku with a smirk. Izuku’s face immediately lit up and Koji pat his cheek babbling at him as he struggled to try and speak.
“How long should we wait?” Bakugo asked like it wasn’t some huge deal as Izuku went even redder.
“About a week should be good.” She smiled easily and wrote something on his chart. “Give you time to finish healing.” She winked at Izuku and left them in the room.
Izuku put Koji on his shoulders as they left the doctor’s office and headed towards the train station. It was his new favorite thing. Being Taller than Dada meant that he was the world's biggest man and holding onto Izuku’s hair had become his ultimate comfort after he'd lost Cow at the park. Now if he ever needed to quiet down he just grabbed a fist full of it and went straight to sleep. Which meant he was in bed with them almost all of the time. Bakugo seemed to be on the same train of thought because he could feel him watching him. “I just asked so that we would know,” he said as they stepped into the flow of people walking to the station. “It doesn’t mean we have to do anything. But if we want to--”
“Okay," Izuku said too quickly feeling his cheeks heat up again when Bakugo’s eyes wouldn’t drop from his face. He couldn’t look at him and swallowed. “Do you… want…”
“-No,” he shot back immediately and Izuku’s eyes flashed at him a little hurt before he held up a hand. “I mean, I do,” he amended. “I just… I like this.” He nudged Izuku with his arm, hands still stuffed into his pockets, looking bashful for the first time since he had known him. “Whatever this is, for now.”
Izuku bumped him back as he pulled Koji off his shoulders and they stepped into the train. “I like it too," he muttered and when he backed into him as the train filled, he felt Bakugo tuck a finger into his belt loop to keep him there.
"Kacchan!" he looked up from the stack of shirts he was folding. Izuku's voice cut through the music he'd been listening to. He walked out into the living room and Koji giggled. "Daddy Boom!"
"W-what?" Izuku stammered and pointed at their son sitting in a grenade.
"It's just the shell. I got bored." Koji rocked as he hit his robots together the grenade swayed but didn't fall over. Izuku picked Koji up and looked at the cushioned interior.
"You cleaned it out?"
He shot Izuku a look to ask if he thought that he was stupid and he looked at least a little bashful. "I did. You want to see something?" He took Koji and set him next to the couch then stepped back next to Izuku. "Villain!" he called. Koji perked up and ran over to the grenade. He climbed inside and hid down in the chamber. They walked over and looked down. Koji had pulled his blanket over him.
"I am here!" he called and Koji popped up.
"We played Villains and All Pop today. It's his favorite place to hide."
"If there is an attack--" Izuku said looking down at the grenade.
"Even you can't bust these without putting in some effort." He had thought the same thing. "Plus, you can always just grab it and run like a heavy duty baby carrier."
Izuku laughed. "Is that your new merch line? Child safety for the hero on the go?"
Koji climbed back in and went back to playing. He watched him for a few minutes before heading back to his room. Izuku joined him looking soft in his pajamas. They folded their clothes while Izuku talked about his day.
Katsuki had forgotten how tiring it was to be on the night shift. Even when he was just sitting in their mostly empty office filing paperwork from the day shift he still couldn't stop yawning. That morning when he got back Izuku was rushing out the door with a smack of a kiss against his cheek. Koji had his breakfast smeared across one of his cheeks and was smiling at him, way too happy. They played for most of the day. He stifled yawns as Koji paced back and forth in the living room giving him instructions in his blended mix of words and gibberish. He recognized the scene from one of the All Might movies. He was probably trying to pronounce words he'd heard.
Getting Koji to settle down for a nap had been a feat, but once he had he fell into his bed. He'd been tempted for the first time in a long time to shut the door, but knew if it was shut that Koji would just start screaming until he opened it.
He woke up to hands spreading across his chest and knees on either side of his thighs. Izuku looked down at him and grinned. "Hi."
"Hello?" he offered.
"Why are you wearing this?" Izuku asked his eyes dropping down. He swallowed at the heat in them.
"Deku and All Pop teamed up together to save the world."
Izuku ran his hands down the front of one of Izuku's older suits, then back up and across his shoulders. "How does it even fit you?"
"It stretches," Katsuki offered. He had been a little surprised that it had fit when he had given in to Koji's demands to put it on. "I can barely move my arms though."
Izuku laughed when the fabric strained as he shifted his arms. "Let's fix that."
He watched Izuku slowly drag the zipper down. His eyes studied every inch of skin that was revealed. He sat up and Izuku pushed the sleeves down and off. He pulled Izuku down into a kiss when he just sat over his knees and stared.
As they kissed he had to keep reminding himself that they were taking it slow. That Izuku's subtle movement in his lap was as far as they were going. Even with Izuku sucking a mark on his collarbone next to a scar he'd gotten their first year out of school. He let his head fall to the pillow when Izuku licked across the new mark and moved up his neck. He opened his eyes and saw crimson staring back at him. He tensed and Izuku chuckled against his neck and bit the skin beneath his mouth.
"Deku," he hissed. Izuku didn't stop. He pushed at his hips, just to stop the movement from driving him insane while their son was staring at them. "Izuku." The tone of his voice finally broke through and Izuku looked at him, then followed where he was looking and dropped quickly to the bed next to him.
"Hey baby," he offered. Koji had his All Might onesie on and had pulled it up over his head. Koji grunted and climbed in. He crawled over him and plopped down on the pillow between him and Izuku. "He's doing this on purpose," he told Izuku after Koji had fallen back to sleep.
"He's 2. He doesn't know."
"He's your son. I wouldn't be surprised," he mumbled.
"Maybe you should wear that more often though," Izuku said running his hand up his chest before he leaned over and kissed him. Koji whined as he was jostled. Izuku chuckled and got out of bed. "I need to shower. Do you want me to make something or should we just order in?"
"Order in," he yawned.
"Anzu's quirk came in," Izuku said from his perch on the toilet. He had pretended not to notice that their days off had started to overlap the last few months.
"Yeah?" he asked as he washed the paint from between Koji's toes. Their decision to repaint his bedroom hadn't gone as well as they had hoped. "Didn't she just turn four?"
"Momo was really excited that she got it so early."
"What'd she get?"
Izuku tapped him on the shoulder and showed a picture of a burning person shaped thing standing next to a grinning Anzu. "She creates a fire golem."
"Bet Todoroki wasn't happy about that."
"I think he's okay. He's dealt with his dad stuff mostly. He did say he wasn't looking forward to all of the fire proofing."
"Our moms were talking about that the other day."
"I broke a lot of things. Nearly burned our apartment down once. Your mom said that your dad had the same stories from when he was a kid."
"Do you think he'll get your quirk?" Izuku asked.
"Is it bad to hope so?" he asked.
"What if he gets mine?" Koji giggled as he ran the rag over his foot. "What if he gets mine." He looked over to Izuku who looked pale. Izuku noticed him looking and blinked whatever he'd been thinking away. "My mom's quirk with Koji's mysterious ninja skills would make a good hero," Izuku said after a few seconds. His smile plastered to his face.
"Or Explosion breath," he said with a laugh. "Boom!" he told Koji.
"Boom!" Koji replied with a splash.
Izuku tried not to think about it. He spent the better part of two weeks avoiding the topic whenever possible because he was convinced that no good would come from obsessing over it. But he was obsessing. By spending all of his time thinking about not thinking about it, Izuku knew that he was obsessing. Only he didn’t know how he was supposed to stop.
“It’s incredibly uncommon for children to be born quirkless these days,” Toshi said as they watched Koji run around from the park bench. “Even if you are quirkless, Bakugo isn’t. And with a quirk as strong as his, surely Koji will have something.”
Izuku frowned. He had thought that too. Told himself that a thousand times. But Koji was a quirk baby, quirk babies didn’t follow normal rules. He had read up on them as soon as he’d found out about Koji, and they were so rare that there was hardly any viable material that referenced what their own quirks were. All of the articles were always focused on other things.
“I was thinking about taking him to the doctor,” he offered into the silence between them. He kept his eyes trained on Koji. He could feel Toshi staring at him. “It would just take an xray and then we could be prepared either way.”
Toshi didn’t answer right away, and when he did it was quiet. “Are you sure that’s the best idea?”
He shrugged, his heart feeling heavy. “I was devastated when I found out I was quirkless…” It felt so weird to say that out loud. Now that he was a pro with the quirk that was given to him- he had spent almost as much time having a quirk as he had without one. And even though Toshi knew everything there was to know about him, Izuku couldn't remember ever talking about this before. "All I ever wanted to be was you. And then suddenly I couldn't." He glanced over at his mentor and immediately wished that he hadn't. The way that Toshi was looking at him made him feel like he was that same little kid again looking at his mom as she struggled to tell him that his dad wasn't coming back.
"But you did,” he said finally and cleared his throat when he couldn't hide the gravel in it. "And One For All is yours to give to whoever you choose,” he reminded him with a small, almost smile.
Izuku nodded and turned back to Koji, but he knew they were both thinking the same thing. About all the scars hiding under his shirt, the pains he still got in his wrists when he pushed too hard. He had put himself through hell and back to become a hero, breaking himself and pushing himself to a place he shouldn't have because he had to be number one. That wasn't the life he wanted for his son. And if he could spare him that pain, he would.
The doctor seemed surprised when he read his name off the list and Izuku walked Koji back, waving to the little girl he'd been playing with while they waited. He let Izuku get Koji settled on the 'big chair,' and flipped through the chart to see if anything had happened. "So you must be Koji's other father,” he said finally and shook his head like he couldn't believe it. He put his professional face back on very quickly, but smiled a knowing smile. "Or should I call you, Cow?"
Izuku laughed and Koji reached up to grab his hair as he looked between them curiously. He hadn't slept very well the night before and had been quieter than usual all day. "No, fortunately he got over Cow,” he said like it was a relief even though still missed the nickname sometimes.
"Well, Mister Midoriya, everything seems to be in order from the last check up. Is there something that we can help you with today?"
Izuku took a deep breath and looked down at Koji. He wondered if he really understood anything that was happening around him. For his sake. He hoped not. "Yes," he told him, his chest feeling light and a little queasy as he looked back up at him. "I was actually wondering if we could get an x ray for the… uh… his quirk joint."
"Oh." The doctor regarded him curiously and then looked back down at Koji. "Well, Mr. Midoriya, I can certainly do that, but I don't understand the worry. Both you and your partner have amazing quirks. It's very rare for parents with quirks not to pass one or both of their traits to their child."
Izuku nodded, he had known that was coming because that was the same thing that the doctor had told his mother when they went to get his x ray. "I know, I'm probably being silly. But I have a quirkless relative, and since Koji is a quirk baby and it's all so unpredictable… well I would just feel better if we were prepared for any situation."
The doctor took the story without a question. "Of course, I understand." He nodded and they set up for Koji to get his scan.
Waiting was impossible. Koji started to get fussy when they strapped him into the lead vest, and as soon as it came off he'd tucked himself into Izuku's shoulder and refused to come out. He didn't understand how the rapid pounding off his heart wasn't keeping him from sleep-- but Koji was dozing when the doctor finally came back into the room.
He wasn't smiling. Izuku knew before he said anything that his nagging suspicion had been right and his heart broke for his son. He listened as the doctor told him about support groups and gave him some pamphlets that would help him explain what happened when Koji got a little older. He asked if they wanted a copy of the x ray and when Izuku refused he sent them away with a look of pity for him and his quirkless child. He didn't remember walking to the train or getting off of it. He didn't remember getting to their apartment building until he was already in the elevator heading to their floor. Koji didn't stir as he took him back to his room and sat with him in the arm chair in the corner across from his crib. Izuku held him and stared at the poster of All Might they had put up there. He thought about how it felt to look at that poster when he was a kid hoping without any rational thought that he would somehow against all odds be a hero anyway. Would Koji do that? Would he see him and Bakugo and wonder why this was happening to him?
The thought of Bakugo brought up a horrible lurching feeling in his gut. He stood up and tucked Koji into bed and headed out to the kitchen to start on dinner. Hoping to not think for a little while.
When Bakugo got home less than an hour later, Izuku was standing at the stove, stirring a pot of chili like he could see the future in it. He looked a little wide eyed and confused when he saw Izuku watching him and frowned. "The doctor's office just called and said you left your phone at the office?" Bakugo said more like a question than a statement. "Is Koji okay? What happened?"
"He's fine,” Izuku said thickly and went back to the chili in a vain attempt to hide his tears and maybe suck them back in. "He's sleeping, should be up soon though."
He felt a hand on his shoulder and swallowed hard against the sharpness in his throat. "Izuku."
"You're going to be mad,” he warned him, still staring at the pot. Bakugo didn't say anything so he continued. "I took Koji to get quirk tested."
Silence again and then, "I thought we talked about this."
"We did, but we didn't,” he said and turned to look at him. He was watching Izuku carefully and Izuku felt his bottom lip wobble. "It was so hard to grow up quirkless,” he told him and the first tear fell before he could stop it. "I saw all of my friends start to get these amazing powers and everyone just kept saying, 'it'll come soon. Just wait.' And it never did. But I had spent so much time waiting I thought surely if I wait a little longer…" he swallowed again and stared up at the ceiling so that he could keep the tears in, but failed. "I just wanted to know. So we could find a better way to tell him. M-make it e-easier."
Katsuki pulled Izuku into his arms. He was relieved when Izuku immediately wrapped his arms around him, clawing onto his tee. He turned off the stove while Izuku's shaky breaths settled.
"Why didn't you tell me?" he asked. He tried to keep his voice calm. He didn't want Izuku to think that he was angry. He wasn't. He was surprised that he wasn't. Maybe it was the fear that he'd first felt when the doctor's office had called, or the guilt as Izuku admitted how hard his childhood had been. He knew that he was a large part of that. Even though they had talked through their issues years ago and Katsuki had apologized over and over, Izuku accepting each one with a soft smile, he couldn't stop the flood of guilt any time it came up. But that was his to deal with. And Izuku hadn't answered yet. He'd just clung tighter to his shirt.
"I didn't know how you would react," Izuku finally whispered. He didn't know how to respond. "I didn't want you to-" Izuku paused, his face still tucked against his chest. "blame me."
"Why would I blame you?" he asked.
"Because… Your quirk is so strong. It's always been so strong. And if the world was right, Koji should have your quirk. So if he's quirkless it's because of me."
"If the world was right?" He guided Izuku back so he could look at his face. "I love this world right now. I love my life. Do I wish that our son had a quirk? Maybe a little bit, but only because I know that there are people out there who are like I was. And I don't want that pain for him. But it doesn't mean I love him any less. It doesn't mean I love you any less. Because it's not your fault." He made sure that Izuku saw the truth as he spoke. "If he's anything like you he'll be better than both of us even without a quirk." He pulled Izuku back against his chest. "Honestly I'm a little relieved."
"What?" Izuku asked. He jerked in his arms, trying to look at him, but Katsuki held him in place.
"The idea of Koji following in our footsteps, of being a Pro-Hero, terrifies me." He sighed. "I'd support him no matter what he decided to do, but this life takes so much."
"I talked about something like that with Toshi a few days ago. He reminded me that One for All was mine to pass on." He let Izuku go as he spoke and Izuku looked up at him. "You've seen what this has done to me." He held up his arm, showing off the scars wrapping around it. "How could I do that to my son?"
"You couldn't," he murmured. "Because you're you." He knocked Izuku in the shoulder. "Don't hide things from me. We're partners right? We're supposed to work together."
Izuku rubbed his shoulder making a betrayed face before he leaned up and kissed his cheek. "Thank you Kacchan."
"Yeah whatever," he didn't know why he was thanking him. "You think your mom still has her books?"
"On how to raise a quirkless child. She has books for everything. She had to have some of those. Why am I asking you?"
He grabbed his phone. Izuku caught his hand.
"Let's wait to tell them."
"Why?" he asked, narrowing his eyes.
"Not for long. Just let me get used to it before we tell them."
"Okay," he agreed. Izuku let go of his phone and stepped back to the stove. Katsuki sat down at the table. He searched for some reading and laughed at the first title. He read a few titles and Izuku groaned after each bad pun. By the time the chili was ready Izuku was laughing and Katsuki felt like he'd won the sports festival their senior year all over again.
"Bye," Izuku said and kissed the top of Koji's head. Katsuki cut another square of pancake and Koji happily shoved it in his mouth. He yawned, then blinked when Izuku kissed him on the cheek and waved again at Koji before heading to work.
It continued like that for the rest of the week. Izuku kissed Koji goodbye then gave Katsuki one as well. It didn't matter if he was still covered in grime from his shift, or passed out on the couch, he got a kiss.
Telling their parents had been difficult. They told Inko first. She'd been given the same news before and while her eyes went watery as she looked at Izuku, she didn't cry. He was grateful for that. Izuku had been a ball of nerves the entire way over. Katsuki had offered to tell his parents himself, but Izuku had insisted that he do it. He knew it was more of Izuku taking the blame, but if it helped him let go of that a little bit then he'd back him up. Katsuki's parents were shocked. His mother asked about Izuku's late blooming quirk, and the possibility that the test was wrong like it had been with him. Izuku had looked over to him.
"It's yours to tell," he'd replied.
It was dark and Koji was asleep in his lap by the time Izuku had explained his quirk and the history and the pressure. His parents had asked questions and by the end they sat in silence, his mom staring at her hands sitting in her lap. She suddenly stood up and hugged Izuku. Izuku stared at Katsuki over her shoulder, his eyes wide and confused.
"You're damn lucky to have him. You better not screw it up," she told Katsuki when they were saying their goodbyes.
Kirishima laughed as Koji climbed all over him. He was fascinated by his quirk, like he was with everyone's. He had tried hugging Anzu's golem a few weeks before. Luckily Todoroki had noticed and iced the thing. Anzu and Koji had both started crying, but he had been grateful his idiot child hadn't been melted. Ashido watched Kirishima and he could see the gears twisting in her mind.
"I heard you cut back your hours," she said when Koji tried hitting Kirishima and the redhead shifted back so he didn't hurt himself. He'd taken a baby fist to the ribs. Katsuki knew just how bad those tiny fists could hurt and winced.
"A day," he replied. It had been a sore topic for the last month. He'd argued with Izuku for the better part of the night a few days ago over their schedules. The League's activity was increasing. Katsuki knew that meant that he should be on the street more, but he hadn't been able to say no when Izuku, near tears out of tired frustration had asked him to step back. He knew they both couldn't work themselves to the bone and while he didn't like Izuku doing it, he knew that Izuku wouldn't be able to stop. He'd never relax with an attack happening at least twice a week. "We hired another UA graduate, one of those kids that stalked Izuku our entire third year."
"Ogata did not stalk me," Izuku said as he walked in the room dressed for work.
"You have today off," he said ignoring the comment.
"I have a meeting. I have to go bye bye." Koji ran up and jumped up into Izuku's arm for his kiss. As soon as Izuku let him down he ran back and jumped knees first back onto Kirishima's stomach. "Stop frowning. I'll only be gone an hour. Two tops," Izuku said and kissed the wrinkle on his forehead when Katsuki looked up at him over the back of the couch.
Ashido was staring at him when the door shut behind Izuku and he looked back at her.
"What?" he snapped.
"Are you two dating?"
"I don't know," he grumbled. Kirishima groaned as Koji stood tripped and landed hard. Katsuki grimaced in sympathy as he curled into a ball. "Koji, come here." Koji looked at Kirishima for a few seconds before running over and climbing onto the couch. "We haven't really talked about it."
"That's stupid," Ashido proclaimed then stole Koji from him.
Izuku could smell dinner as he came down the hallway, guilt burrowing into his stomach when he realized Bakugou had made his favorite stir fry. He was standing at the stove when Izuku walked into the apartment, not turning around when the door shut behind him. Izuku sighed. It had been more than two hours. He walked into the kitchen behind him and wrapped his arms around his waist, tucking his face into his shoulders. It took a moment but he felt Bakugou relax under him and he grunted, "I fucking hate that you keep going in on your day off." He stirred the food aggressively. "There are a hundred other heros in the city."
"It was Ogata,” he grumbled not pulling his head up. "He needed help with a case."
"I thought it was his job to make ours easier," Bakugou snapped. "If he sucks that much, maybe it'll be better if we fire him. Find some new idiot who doesn't need as much help."
Izuku pulled his face out of his back and frowned. "Bad day?"
"No!" Bakugo snapped too quickly and moved out of Izuku's arms as he grabbed a few spices from the pantry. Izuku just stared at him as he angrily shook pepper into the pan and glared the chicken into submission. "What?" He demanded when Izuku didn't look away.
"You seem mad," Izuku offered.
"I'm not mad, I just-" Bakugou stopped and took a breath and held it in. "Are we dating?"
Izuku blinked. That wasn't what he had been expecting. "What?"
"Are we dating?" He asked, leaning against the arm of the oven. He kept his eyes on the pan as he moved it off the stove. "We kiss and we sleep together and it feels like this is more than friendship-- but we haven't talked about it, and I want it to be dating."
"W-we are?" He said confused.
It was Bakugou's turn to blink and looked confused.
He took a step back towards him and held his hand. "Katsuki, we have been dating for a few months."
He shook his head. "What?"
Izuku nodded. "That's what dating is. Kissing, and talking and sleeping with each other. I mean, you said you loved me. It doesn't matter if we actually make it out of the apartment or not-- that's dating."
Izuku frowned at him. Bakugou looked pale and like he might puke. "You… said you loved me? Last month after I took Koji to the doctor?" He felt his face get redder with each second Bakugo stayed silent. "Unless that was an accident,” he blurted before he could stop himself. He held his hands up, "which is totally fine. You don't love me. Yes we can date. Let's go our right now and forget any of this ever happened-"
"No," Bakugou grabbed his arm when he tried to leave the kitchen. "I do love you,” he said almost aggressively.
He wished that he could cover his face, but instead he was left open and bare with a very red face. "Y-you're just saying that because I made it weird."
"No, I love you," Bakugou swore. "I've loved you since we were in highschool and you decided it was a good idea to date freaking bird face. I've loved you since you saved me from the league. I've loved you for years, I swear. Ask my mom, Koji wouldn't even exist if I…" he trailed off and his hand dropped, but Izuku caught it.
"What do you mean?" He asked feeling breathless, heart hammering in his chest. And Bakugou looked like he had never seen him before, lost and afraid as he dragged his eyes back up to his. "Just tell me."
He took a breath. "Koji… the woman who made him said her quirk made a child for who they touched and the person they loved the most. That's why he never shuts up. Why he's the happiest and sweetest kid out there. Why he's not a brat like I was when I was his age. Koji is all the good parts of me, and everything that I love the most about you."
Izuku didn't know what to say. His chest felt like he had aimed an explosion at him and it was like there was nothing else in the world but them. Like all of the walls that were between them just fell down and they were bared. He bridged the space between them, a hand on the back of Bakugou's neck to pull him down. He seemed surprised but he didn't move away. Izuku let go of his hand and held his face as he kissed him again trying to put everything he could into the most tender thing he could do. Bakugo hesitated and then his arms were around him and he kissed him back, a heavy breath leaking out of him. "I love you too,” he whispered against his lips. Bakugou tilted his head and the kiss deepened, shooting electricity up his spine. "I love you so much Katsuki-" he let out a startled noise when Bakugou lifted him off the ground in his urgency to stay connected to him.
He ended up on the counter, Bakugou pushing his legs open and pulling him to the edge so that they were as close as they could be. His tongue pushed into Izuku's mouth and he groaned which set something off in Bakugou. His hands were hot as they pushed up his shirt and Izuku jumped, pushing back. His hand automatically went to the hem of his shirt to keep it down, face red as he stared into Bakugo's glassy eyes. "Sorry… it's just…" he shook his head.
Bakugou pulled him back in and kissed him again, a slow, deep kiss that pushed every button in his body. He had his hand in Izuku's hair and it was all that he could do to hold onto his arm, wondering how he'd never noticed how big he had gotten. "I don't care about your scars,” he said when he pulled back. "I need to see you." Both of them were panting as Izuku slowly let his hand fall away. Bakugou grabbed the hem of his shirt and dragged it over his head.
Izuku didn't give him any time to look at him, before he dragged him back in to kiss him again. His pants felt tight and every part of him wanted to rip everything off of Bakugou and memorize every part of him. "Should we get in bed?" He breathed, fingers still knotted in his hair.
The baby monitor went off and Bakugo looked about ready to throw it across the room. Izuku choked out a laugh and shook his head. "I've got him,” he said finally and gave him one last wanting kiss before he slid off the counter and grabbed his shirt off the floor.
Katsuki spent all of his spare time reading any book Inko recommended. If she loaned him a book it always had notes that helped and things she disagreed with. He liked seeing a little bit of the woman that raised Izuku. There were some scathing criticisms in the margins that he could almost imagine her tying back her hair and matching down to the author's house to tell him how wrong they were. There were parts where she admitted were true. He hated how much of those parts were his doing.
He was skimming a paragraph about finding other quirkless children for a peer group and looked down where Toshi was sitting with Koji as he played. They had been battling robot versus giraffe the last time he'd checked, but it looked like they had made up and the giraffe was now helping the robot build a house.
"Did you know any other quirkless children growing up?" He knew Izuku hadn't without asking. He hadn't really talked much with Izuku about anything he read. He wanted to learn more before he did. He wanted for once to be the person that saw some good, because he knew Izuku couldn't right then.
"No. There was only one other boy in town." Toshi looked up at him. "However, my father was quirkless."
"Izuku didn't tell me that," he mumbled.
Toshi shook his head with a chuckle. "I don't think I ever told him." Toshi took the giraffe when Koji shoved it at him. "I know that your childhoods are not something you like to reflect on, but without it neither of you would be who you are today. Perhaps you should be looking at where you are now. How far you've come."
"I don't want Koji to go through what Izuku did."
"No parent wants to see their child hurt. But it will happen. You just need to be there to support him when it happens. I think that things might have turned out differently if Izuku didn't have Inko. That woman adores her son, and I know that the two of you love Koji just as much if not more." Toshi laughed when Koji climbed into his lap. "As long as he knows he's loved, I think he will be okay."
He watched Koji draw Toshi's attention and after a few minutes went back to his book.
"Are you sure you still want to come?" Kirishima asked. "It's okay. I can just make Mina go with me."
"It's fine. I want to stop by the office and make sure Deku leaves on time anyway." Kirishima looked unsure as he watched him tie Koji's shoelaces. "Now are we going?"
Koji held onto his fingers as they walked down the hall. He picked him up after the first flight of stairs. As soon as they got to the bottom he was kicking and whining to be let down. Koji knew the walk to the train. He stopped and looked down the streets like he was looking for cars. He let him hang from his arms as they walked across one of the larger intersections. He swung him back to his feet on the opposite curb.
He picked him up again when they reached the outdoor market Kirishima had been raving about for weeks. After a few minutes he lifted him up and set him on his shoulders. Koji laughed and held onto his hair. They walked around the stalls set up in the street. Koji wanted to touch everything. Thankfully he couldn't reach much from his perch. He didn't whine to get down until he saw the ice cream stand.
"Dada. More." Koji called tugging on his hair. He held up the ice cream cone and Koji sucked some into his mouth. He felt a dribble down the back of his neck and grimaced. Kirishima laughed and he saw his phone drop suspiciously fast.
"If you send that to anyone you're dead."
"Boom!" Koji agreed.
"Right. I'll just delete it. Oops I sent it to Midoriya." Kirishima grinned. Katsuki had thought he was going to cry when he told him that they were dating. Koji tugged for more ice cream. He licked a drip and Koji pulled harder.
"Dada no! It's mine."
"No pulling. And say please. I know I taught you better than that."
Kirishima looked like he was about to cry again. He scoffed. "Don't let those eyes lure you in."
After ice cream and Kirishima chasing after him in the tiny petting zoo that just had a single goat, Koji passed out. He was drooling on his neck as he carried him out. "Thanks for coming," Kirishima said.
"Yeah whatever." Kirishima made a face at him and he pushed him away before heading down the street. It wasn't far from the office. Koji stayed asleep, huffing breaths against his neck. His phone chimed a few times.
He walked in and their receptionist waved before she saw who he'd brought. "Is that Koji? No way he's that big already!" She kept her voice quiet as she looked at him. "Aw. He looks just like you." He looked down at Koji and smiled. He couldn’t disagree, but with each day he thought he looked more and more like Izuku.
"Is Deku still in his office?"
"The last time I checked he was. I didn't see him head out."
"Thanks," he offered. She made a high noise and nodded before going back to her desk.
Koji stirred on the way up the stairs.
"You want to see Daddy?" Koji lit up. "Let's go see if we can find him."
Koji took off as soon as he put him down. He stumbled a little before righting himself and running through the empty floor. "Daddy!" Koji shouted as he ran into Izuku's office. He stopped in the doorway. Koji had his arms wrapped around Izuku's neck.
"What are you doing here?" Izuku asked with a smile.
"We went to that market Kirishima kept dragging Ashido to."
"I had ice cream!" Izuku seemed surprised. He must not have seen the pictures yet. "and goat poop!" Izuku made a face and Koji laughed. He looked to Katsuki for an explanation.
"A goat pooped while he was petting it. His favorite part of the day." He shrugged. He never knew what would excite their weirdo. "How much longer do you have here?"
Izuku looked at the stack of papers on his desk, then down at Koji. "I can finish this in the morning."
"Great. You can buy dinner on the way home then." He grinned. "You want Ramen?" Koji nodded and looked up at Izuku.
Izuku looked at him.
"What? Don't look at me like that. You're the one that let him try yours." He draped his arm over Izuku's shoulders. Koji ran to the stairs then back to them.
"Because yours is ridiculous."
"Is that why you always steal some?" Koji reached up and Izuku leaned to hold his hand as they walked down the stairs.
"I don't know what you're talking about," Izuku said.
"Dada! Up please," Koji said and held his arms up. He picked him up and swung him onto his shoulders as they walked outside.
Koji told Izuku about their day and talked about the goat pooping for two blocks. Whenever he glanced over Izuku was always looking up at Koji nodding along to whatever he was saying. They grabbed their ramen to go. Koji ate in odd bursts that made normal meals almost impossible. He was getting better about it, but it was safer to go back home where he could run around when he wanted.
Koji was asleep. As soon as he'd drifted off Katsuki had crawled over Izuku on the couch. He'd gotten a laugh that he'd swallowed with a deep kiss. He slid his hands along the waistband of Izuku's shirt, but didn't move any further up. He wanted him to feel comfortable, and if slow deep kisses worked then he would make that ‘sacrifice’. His hands were wrapped around his ribs, his shirt lifted enough that he could see Izuku's stomach trembling as they kissed.
He snaked down and kissed the bare skin below his belly button, then moved up, kissing a pale scar. Izuku's fingers were gripping his hair tightly, not pulling or pushing, just there. He waited until his breath calmed before kissing another few inches up until his mouth was hovering just below the shirt.
"I swear. If he wakes up, I'm going to- I don't know. Lock the door." Izuku chuckled. He nipped there and pushed the shirt further up.
His phone started ringing. As soon as the shrill noise broke the heated silence Koji started crying. He pressed his forehead to Izuku's stomach. Izuku pet the back of his head for a few seconds before Koji's cries turned into actual calls for them.
"I bet he just got startled. He'll go right back to sleep," Izuku said and sat up.
He groaned and grabbed his phone.
"What?" he snarled into the phone as he answered it.
"One of the hero blogs saw a fan that posted a picture of you and Koji. It's all over the news now," Kirishima said. "Mina sent you the link."
"Thanks," he grumbled and Kirishima told him to text back every once in a while. He did have 5 unread messages from them, so maybe he hadn't deserved the anger. But he was tired of getting so close.
He opened the article after hanging up with Kirishima.
Secret Love Child? The headline read. He scoffed and looked at the picture. He could see the petting zoo in the background and Koji didn't look happy as Katsuki cleaned his hands with a wipe. He hadn't wanted to leave his friend. The article didn't really have any information. Just that he'd been out with a mysterious child.
He searched his name and was skimming the articles when Izuku sat down next to him. "Someone finally noticed Koji," Katsuki offered and clicked on one of the actual news sites.
"Three years ago, many thought that the hero Ground Zero, who after joining forces with Hero Deku and opening their own hero agency, would break onto the top 10 before the end of that year. But his momentum stalled out at the end of that summer. Over the past two years he's taken down less big name villains than he had in his first six months on the market. Many believed that he was suffering from a lingering injury. There were others who expressed concern that the more marketable Hero Deku had taken the spotlight in their agency and Ground Zero had been pushed toward obscurity because of it." He scoffed.
Izuku took his phone and kept reading. "We now have reason to believe that the true reason for Ground Zero's step back is a child. The child, seen in the photo below taken by an anonymous fan, looks to be about three. The fan reports that it looked like they were out for a day at a local market with Hero Red Riot." Izuku's kept reading, but stopped reading out loud.
"That could have been worse," he said with a shrug.
"They're going to be watching you now," Izuku said. "The reporter wonders toward the end who the mother is."
"I'm not worried. We've got that PR specialist on retainer for things like this. She'll put a stop to it and things will go back to normal." He tugged Izuku against him. Izuku grumbled, but rested his head on his chest.
It took a few weeks before they stopped following him from the agency.
He walked into the bedroom and kicked the door shut with more force than the gesture warranted. Izuku jolted awake and sat up.
"Koji's at my mom's," he said and pulled off his shirt.
Izuku stared at him for a few seconds. He could see his brain slowly processing the words. The moment that the words clicked he saw Izuku's eyes darken. He grinned and joined him on the bed. Their teeth clacked against each other before Izuku softened the kiss.
Katsuki meant to take his time, to go slow and remember every second, but that plan went out the window when Izuku sucked on his tongue and stuck his hand down his pants at the same time. He groaned. He pushed Izuku's boxers down enough for him to slide against him and let Izuku take over, his rough hands wrapped around them both as Katsuki moved. They kissed and panted against eachother until Izuku was coming with a hoarse cry. Seeing him writhe underneath him and the twist of Izuku's wrist as his grip tightened in response had him coming too.
"Well that was quick," Izuku said after a few minutes that Katsuki used to breathe as he laid on top of Izuku.
"Shut up," he growled. He rolled over and flopped on the bed. "That was just a warm up."
Izuku rolled and looked down on him. "Oh yeah?"
An hour later he had a hand up Izuku's shirt, rubbing up and down his side as he sucked on his cock and spread his fingers wide as he twisted. Izuku groaned and grabbed the headboard again. It creaked under the strength of his grip. It had already made a dangerous cracking noise a few minutes before. He sucked and dragged his fingers slowly across his prostate earning a low moan and another crack of the straining wood.
He quickened his pace, driving his fingers in and sucking until Izuku came with a broken cry. He coughed and pulled off in reflex. He felt a splash across his face and realized his mistake. He waited until Izuku had stopped trembling before slowly pulling his fingers out and sitting up.
"Fuck," he groaned and wiped at his face with his clean hand. Izuku started laughing. He stared at him for a second, cheeks flaming in embarrassment. "What are you laughing at?"
"Oh," Izuku said and sat up. "I'm sorry. I'm not- I don't know why I'm laughing." He grabbed the edge of the sheet and wiped at his face. "That was really good though," Izuku sighed. He felt his cheeks heat even more at the praise and looked down at his lap.
"Do you want pizza?" He asked swiping the back of his hand across his cheek and looking to Izuku. "I'm starving."
They made out on the couch while they waited for their food. Then made out while they watched the Lemillion movie that he'd seen at the grocery store a few days before and had picked up to watch with Koji.
When he got Izuku back in their mess of a bed, Katsuki made sure that he went slow. He waited until he had Izuku rocking back on his fingers and sighing into each kiss before he finally pulled on the soft fabric of his shirt. Izuku's breath hitched when he kissed his chest.
"You're beautiful," Katsuki whispered. Izuku let out a noise that was half sob and clawed at his back. He slowed the rhythm of his fingers as he kissed every scar he could find. He repeated his praise any time he came to a scar that he remembered. The ones on his wrists from his battle at the training camp their first year. The one just under his ribs from a horned villain two weeks after their graduation. He remembered the fear he'd felt when he'd seen Izuku speared on the villain's horn as laughed. "I love you," he whispered kissing a long faded starburst on his shoulder. His contribution to the marks on Izuku's skin. Izuku pulled him in for a searing kiss. Izuku's leg hooked over his knee, then with a twist and a shove he was on his back looking up at Izuku. Izuku's face was serious for a moment before he leaned down.
"I want-" He swallowed at the roughness of his voice. "I want you to watch me." Izuku kissed him. He guided Katsuki's hands to his hips before looking back and pulling his lip between his teeth. His breath caught when he felt Izuku's fingers grip him, and he let it out in a groan as he guided Katsuki in, slowly lowering himself down. His hands trembled on Izuku's hips, trying not to push him. But the slow crawl was torture. Izuku looked down at him and he recognized the glint in his eye. The bastard was doing it on purpose. He thrusted up and Izuku yelped, hand falling down on the middle of his chest.
"You want to stop teasing me?" he growled out. Izuku's eyes narrowed and that glint of mischief ignited. Izuku didn't stop. He barely moved in a lazy cycle. Any time Katsuki tried to move Izuku caught his hands, or he pressed his hips back down to the bed when he tried to meet that sweet heat. He purred against his neck for him to watch him any time that his eyes closed in frustration. Katsuki did watch him. Watched every flex of his thighs, every gasped inhale or moaned exhale. He watched the concentration wrinkle his brow and the slick red of his lip as he bit on it. Izuku's rhythm faltered and they moaned together as he slid deeper in.
"C'mon please," Katsuki murmured and stole a kiss. "Please baby I want to see you come."
Izuku kissed him and let him go. They moved together. Sliding out and away before coming together. Izuku's head dropped back and he watched him as he came undone. Izuku's hands fell over his. He guided him up and down and when he felt closer he wrapped his fingers around Izuku.
"Fuck," Izuku hissed. Izuku looked down at him, a flicker of a smile crossed his face before his mouth dropped open in a quiet moan. He was surprised by his orgasm it raced down up his spine and his mind went blank. When he stopped to breath he saw Izuku coming. He felt him spasm around him and groaned.
Izuku collapsed next to him. He turned and looked at him. "You gonna keep coming all over me?" he asked looking down at the stripes on his chest. Izuku snorted and hid his face in his shoulder.
They showered together. Izuku was half asleep in his arms as he washed his hair. "I love you," Izuku said leaning up for a kiss.
Chapter 7: Chapter 7
Hi, Prubs here!
I just wanted to take a second to say thank you to everyone who has followed our story! We really didn't expect this to do as well as it has and your kudos and comments have all be wonderful. Thank you so much for your suport and we hope you like the final chapter and Epilogue!
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
His mom was still teasing him a week later about how relaxed he looked. Katsuki knew he blushed every time. And he knew that was why she kept teasing him, but he couldn't stop. Izuku was running late and so he picked Koji up. He ran ahead of him, then ran back as they walked the few blocks from his parents’. He watched Koji look both ways for cars then look back, waiting for permission. He grabbed his hand and they crossed. "What do you think daddy will want to eat for dinner?"
"Octopus!" Koji yelled waving his hands around. He should have known letting him watch the Lemillion movie was a bad idea.
"We don't have octopus."
"Chicken and squid!"
He held open the building door and Koji ran across the lobby. He stopped and got their mail before following him up the stairs. He flipped through the envelopes, mostly junk. "Race you Dada!"
He jogged behind Koji as he clambered up the first few flights of stairs before he slowed. Any time Koji looked back he pretended to pant. Koji laughed and stumbled, but pulled himself up.
"Hi!" Koji called when he reached the top of the stairs.
"Hello! What's your name?"
His heart stopped when he heard the voice.
"Koji!" Katsuki called and ran up the last few stairs two at a time. He saw Himiko wrap her arms around Koji before blue flame filled the stairwell. He dodged and propelled himself up and over the second stream of fire. His foot collided with the side of Dabi's head and he fell.
"Give him back," he roared and ran at Himiko. She squeaked and darted to the side. He dropped as heat soared over him. He threw a blast back. Dabi dodged and threw another stream. His arm burned, but he ignored it and barreled into him taking him down. They stumbled down the stairs. He took advantage of the moment of panic when the ground fell out from under them and slammed his fist into Dabi’s stomach. His gauntlets would have hurt worse, but Dabi's groan was loud enough. He hit the ground and slammed his palms into his shoulders, they burned with the force of the blast. Dabi yelled. He kicked him across the temple and the screaming stopped.
"Toga!" he yelled and with a blast he was up the stairs. They were gone. All that was left was scorched walls and the Suneater plush Koji had carried everywhere for the last two weeks.
He picked up the doll and saw red as he turned back down the stairs. He set the doll down outside the pool of blood slowing growing beneath the villain and grabbed him. "Wake up you bastard," he shouted and shook him.
He could hear the sirens going off in the building. Someone had set off the villain alert. "Wake the fuck up!" He smacked him. His palm stung as he stared at his slack face. "Where did she take my son?!" He kept shouting until his throat felt raw. Until hands pulled him away.
"Get the fuck off me," he shouted and pushed them off.
"Tell me where she took him!" He smacked him again. He saw Dabi stir and blink slowly. They started pulling him off again. He fought, heard a shout of pain and grabbed Dabi's shirt shaking him. His eyes slowly focused on him. "Where is he?!" Katsuki saw the villain’s lip twitch before he passed back out. "No!" He shook him again. There were more hands. Officers yelling for him to calm down. To stop resisting. He fought them, yelling for Dabi to answer him.
A finger touched his forehead and the world faded.
When Katsuki woke up, he was in a jail cell. His hands were locked together in metal braces. He groaned and awkwardly pushed himself up until he was sitting back against the wall.
He glared at the camera in the corner of the cell. The tiny red light blinked at him. He held onto the anger simmering under his skin. He had to. If he let go he didn't know what he'd do. His cell door buzzed and he heard quick footsteps. The door was pushed open and all of his anger dropped out in a single breath.
"I-Izuku," he said, his voice cracking. Izuku looked him over then touched his face, wiping at something on it. "I'm s-sorry. She took him." He swallowed around the pressure trying to strangle him. "I lost him."
Bakugou took in a hard breath and then another, and let out a choked nose that Izuku could feel in his own throat. "Let him out of these,” he told the officer that had come in with him, his hand on the braces keeping Bakugo's arms together.
The officer looked scared, mouth open as he struggled for his words. "I… uh, I don't have the key, Mr. Midoriya,” he said breathlessly. "The officer who does-"
Izuku stopped listening. He charged One for All into his hands and pulled at the braces which gave way easily with a loud crack. They fell to the floor between them. He pulled Bakugou in as hard as he could, holding him together while he fell apart. He could barely breathe himself, but he forced himself to keep standing. He had been on his way out of the office when the officer called and told him they would need him to come down to the station and that Bakugo was getting charged for Excessive Force in Pursuit of a Villain. He couldn't believe it. He hadn't bothered asking to know why, he just ran to the station and was met by uncomfortable stares and scared whispers when he pushed his way in and demanded to speak to the officer in charge. He was surprised when he saw Tsukauchi step out from the precinct and wave him in.
Izuku listened as they told him what had happened without really taking it in. They showed him the security footage from their apartment and he watched the scene play out with Bakugo taking Dabi down and blasting off both his arms as Toga disappeared into a warp gate with their kid. It didn't make sense.
"It seems like they were targeting the boy," Tsukauchi said mirroring Izuku’s thoughts. "Which is odd seeing as their primary objective since the outbreak has been to find you. It doesn't make sense to me that they would take your partner’s child-- but one of my detectives was doing some digging." He held his hand out and a man to the left the Izuku hadn't even noticed was there stepped forward to hand him a file. "The pediatrician that Koji goes to hired a new assistant a few months back. He said that she's been acting weird for a few weeks and eventually she stopped coming in altogether. We were sent out to do a wellness check on her and we found her tied up and weak, seemingly drained of blood and being kept barely alive."
Izuku’s hand clenched the arms of the chair he was in and they snapped off like a twig in his fingers. "Toga."
Tsukauchi nodded, not seemingly bothered by the break. "We got her to the hospital and got some blood in her. She just barely woke up, but said the last thing she remembered was going to a bar. She met a boy there and they hit it off and he seemed very interested in a client she had seen the other day. A top ten hero bringing in someone else's kid for quirk testing."
Izuku groaned and sat forward. So this was his fault. He held his face in his hands and forced himself to keep it together. He could not afford to fall apart now, not when his son was missing. "Koji is my son,” he told Tsukauchi, "mine and Bakugou's. He's ours."
He nodded but his frown didn't let up. "It doesn't feel like this now, but that is a good thing. They want you to come looking for him. They won't hurt him,” he assured Izuku, placing a hand on his shoulder.
He swallowed, throat feeling raw and dry when he came back to himself. "Where is Bakugou?" He asked and Tsukauchi nodded towards the holding cell and told one of the officer's nearby to let him back.
"It's not your fault,” he promised Bakugou as he held him, forcing calm into his voice and shoving his power down. "They took him to get to me. And we are going to get him back,” he promised and pulled back on Bakugou's shoulders so that he had to look at him. "I'm going to get him back,” he swore to him. "Whatever it takes."
Izuku couldn't remember the next day happening. He was with Tsukauchi going over everything the had on the league and then the sun was up and it was tomorrow. He had forced Bakugou to go home and rest, but after he showered off the blood he was back. Izuku didn't like it, but he didn't argue with him, just focused on the search. He knew the statistics. Two days. Two days and the trail almost always ran cold. Tsukauchi didn't seem to think this rule applied seeing as the League was obviously trying to lure them out, but it didn't stop Izuku from feeling the pressure of the clock ticking down minute by minute.
They called in every favor they could, every classmate and every ally. They even managed to get Lemillion to look into their son’s disappearance and he promised he would do what he could to help them get Koji back. Soon the city was on an all out manhunt.
The first day passed with no sign of him. Of any of them. The second day went by much quicker with still nothing to hold onto. He watched Bakugou's hand as it clenched the Suneater plush they had gotten Koji not that long ago, his fist getting tighter and tighter as the detectives recapped what they had found that day. But it was a whole lot of nothing. Izuku reached out and touched him, holding onto his wrist until he released the pressure from the toy. The detectives and heroes alike promised to keep searching and told them to go home, urging them to rest until something came up. But he knew that wasn't going to happen.
Both sets of parents were at their apartment and the thought of going back to them empty handed with no news was agonizing. But Izuku was exhausted. He had been awake for over 60 hours and he was covered in layer on layer of grime. He pulled Bakugou toward the train but he stopped, looking back towards the agency. "Katsuki…" he started but Bakugou shook his head.
"I just need a little more time,” he told him under his breath.
Izuku shook his head. "You are exhausted. You have to sleep. If we found them right now-"
"I'd kill them-"
"You'd hurt yourself," Izuku finished and took his shoulders in his a strong grip. "Katsuki, this isn't our fault. This happened to us not because of us. They need Koji to get to us. He’s scared, but he isn't hurt. But you can't keep running on empty. I can't lose you too."
Izuku drew him in like he was fragile. He felt it. Every second that passed without Koji was adding another crack to his hard exterior. He knew that he couldn't break. He had to stay together. Get his son back, then he could let go. They walked home even though the train would have taken them half the time. He knew that they needed the steps. Needed a task to do. One foot in front of the other. The apartment was just a set of empty rooms where they would sit next to each other, seeing all the places that Koji should be. Izuku held onto his hand as they walked up the stairs. Past the rust colors stain that wouldn't ever be clean, and through their door. Their moms had been there. He could see where they had cleaned. The food sitting on the counter, and the meals probably tucked into the fridge. Izuku went to head back to Katsuki's room, but he stopped and headed to the kitchen.
"Do you want stew or-" He held up a container. "Whatever this is."
"I'll take that," Izuku offered. He nodded and popped the lid before sticking it in the microwave. He went through the bags sitting on the shelf and sorted them before putting them away. He could see his father in some of the items. The amount of food was too much for them, but Katsuki knew that they probably needed the distraction as much as he and Izuku. "Do we have any hot sauce?" Izuku asked.
He set an unopened bottle on the table and went back to the microwave. His own meal was spinning slowly as the time counted down. Izuku's phone chimed and they both froze as he checked the notification.
"Dabi is out of surgery. He's going to survive."
"Pity," he growled out. His arm jerked as he opened the microwave door and grabbed his food.
"I know you're angry, but do you really want to live with the weight of having killed someone?"
He looked across their small table. Izuku looked like it was an honest question. Like he wouldn't judge him however he answered. He stirred the liquid of the stew and thought about his answer. If it got Koji back he would in a heartbeat, and it was a little terrifying to know how true that statement was. But a tiny part of him was relieved. If only because he might know where they'd gone. "I wouldn't have lost sleep if that lowlife had died,” he grumbled. "Tsukauchi knows?"
"He's the one that texted me. They have detectives waiting for him to wake up."
He took a bite, the meat was too hot in his mouth. "He fucking smiled," he told Izuku. "I doubt he'll tell them anything."
"I know. But we can hope." Izuku set his phone down and went back to his food.
When Katsuki was done, he started washing their dishes. Then dried them and set them on the counter. Izuku watched him the whole time. When he stopped and gripped the counter Izuku stood. His forehead dropped between his shoulder blades and Izuku's arms curled around him. "We will get him back."
He touched Izuku's hand. "I know," he replied, his voice thick with tears he refused to shed. They would get him back. There was no reason for them.
"Let's go to bed," Izuku said after a few moments.
He let go of the counter and walked back to his room. They discarded their clothes and crawled into bed. He curled on his side and Izuku moved in as close as he could. He watched as Izuku took a series of slow measured breaths. Then opened his eyes and the ghost of a smile crossed his lips before he kissed him softly and laid his head back down, forehead tucked against his collarbone. He rubbed a hand through the back of his hair. He could see the strain starting to show as Izuku refused to let up on his determination. Katsuki found solace in it, but wished he could do the same for him. Wished he'd been strong enough to protect their son, strong enough to get him back. Wished he was strong enough now.
He knew what Izuku would say though if he admitted all of that. He'd cock his head slightly and look at him with those bright eyes. There would be a smile on his lips, cause Izuku was always meant to be smiling, and he'd tell him that that's what partners were for. They are there for you when you're too weak to go on. They are there to help you back to your feet. They are there to face down your enemies together.
He pulled Izuku's hand up between them and laced their fingers before kissing his knuckles. Izuku's eyes cracked open and he looked up at him. He kissed his forehead. "We'll get him back."
Izuku's phone started ringing. He jerked, sitting up as Izuku answered. It didn't feel like they'd slept for very long. Had they missed something?
"Mom?" Izuku asked.
"I-Izuku?" her voice was wobbling.
"Mom. Are you okay?" Izuku switched to speaker.
Katsuki could hear his mom shouting in the background.
"First you take my son then my grandson? You better run you coward." Mitsuki let out a feral growl. "Inko! Are you okay?"
"T-the boys," Inko stammered.
"Izuku?" Mitsuki asked.
"What happened mom?" Katsuki asked.
"That damned warp guy-" she cursed under her breath. "We were walking to the grocery store and he just appeared. He shoved a letter into Inko's hands. I told him I'd find his scrawny little body and strangle him and he ran off. We're fine, but you better come down here. The envelope has Izuku's name on it."
One of the detectives scoffed when his mom retold the story at the station. She looked over to him and the man gulped and looked away. Katsuki felt a little lighter knowing that his mom was there. The envelope was examined first even though all Katsuki wanted to do was tear it open and see what those bastards had to say. Izuku stood next to him. His eyes followed the technicians as they worked.
Finally they nodded to Tsukauchi and the detective walked over to them. He handed Izuku the letter and Izuku looked up at him before tearing it open. There was a single blond curl and a scrap of paper in it. Izuku pulled the lock of Koji's hair out as Katsuki grabbed the paper.
"What the hell?"
Izuku looked over, cradling the lock close to his chest. His eyes were far away.
"It's a location," Tsukauchi commented when Katsuki showed him. He let the detective take it and guided Izuku over to the computer with a hand on his back. He could see the crack in his composure.
"We'll get him back," he whispered and kissed his temple. Izuku looked over to him. "Right?"
Izuku nodded, life coming back to his eyes.
Izuku tried not to be surprised by the amount of heroes that showed up to help with the rescue operations. He remembered how many had come when they went after Erie and the League of Villains hadn’t even been a part of that. Not that they really knew of anyway. But here they were, piling into the conference room to make a plan-- the plan-- to end this once and for all.
Izuku was leaning in the corner watching Bakugou talk to Todoroki and Momo about everything that had happened as they waited for their other heroes to arrive. They had pulled a few people from their class. Todoroki, Momo, Iida and Kirishima. All of the people that had seen All for One up close and personal. But they’d also called in a few others from the top. Fat Gum nodded at him as he entered with Bunker who at least didn’t frown at him as he followed him over to Kirishima. Kamui Woods came over to shake his hand after a few minutes, but he was most surprised to see Lemillion walk in, scan the room and make a beeline towards him. He surprised Izuku by hugging him hard enough to pull him off the floor and offered him a small smile when he put him back down.
“I’m glad to see you again Deku. Wish it would be under better circumstances,” he admitted with a sheepish look.
“Yeah,” Izuku let out a hard laugh and squeezed his shoulder. “Feels like a lifetime ago we were in one of these things as kids doesn’t it?”
Lemillon nodded and laughed at that, rubbing at the back of his head. “I have to admit I was a little weary. I can’t say that was a good memory for me.”
Izuku remembered that all to well. Honestly, he couldn’t either, especially with how things turned out. “I’m glad you came though,” Izuku told him softly. He remembered how intensely Mirio had fought to find and protect Erie. He wanted that for Koji. He wanted Koji home. “I think that we are all a little more at ease with the number one hero here,” he teased punching his arm. Mirio made a face at him and Izuku frowned feeling like he had said the wrong thing. “What?”
“You haven’t… you’re kidding right?” he asked. Izuku blinked at him and Mirio shook his head smiling. “Wow, I had no idea you… but I guess with everything that’s been happening there is no way you would check the new hero chart.” He pulled out his phone and typed something in quickly before he handed it over to Izuku. He scanned the opening statement and scrolled down to the chart stopping when he saw his own name listed at number one. He hadn’t even known. “With everything that you’ve been doing with the League, your name has been everywhere. People are rallying behind you. Ground Zero too. Look.” He scrolled a little further and saw Katsuki listed at number twelve. “He was higher,” Mirio said leaning in to speak more softly. “But after he blew that guy’s arms off everyone got a little freaked out. Honestly I think that helped him a little too though, a lot of people would do that for their kids. I know that I would.”
Izuku blinked at him, snapped out of his daze by the comment. “You have a kid?”
Mirio smiled and nodded, poking at the phone still in his hand to show him a picture of Tamaki with a little blond girl in his arms, trying to hide from the camera. She looked about Koji’s age and Izuku’s heart ached as he scrolled through the pictures. “She’s a quirk baby too,” he said softly and Izuku looked back up at his once mentor. His face looked soft. “Her name is Nikko. She’s the reason I wanted to work this case. Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to see you too.” He smiled like Izuku had been hurt by his words, “But I couldn’t stop thinking about what I would do is someone had taken her.”
Izuku didn’t know what to say to that, but fortunately Tsukauchi came in at that point and shut the door with him. They were all there. It was time to start.
Bakugou came and stood next to him as everyone sat down, but Izuku couldn’t. He felt restless and he tapped his fingers against the wall until Bakugou took his hand. He held it tight as they went over the plan, looking at all the angles of the island that the coordinates had lead them too. “It’s uninhabited. And has a lot of forest cover,” Tsakauchi said scanning the photos again. “Help from the air will be near impossible, so we can only rely with who is on the ground.”
“We should go in strong,” Iida said, “If they have time to coordinate we don’t stand a chance.”
“I’m not sure that’s smart,” Mirio said from the other end of the table. “One attack could take us all out, we need to look at this smart, not strong.”
“My thoughts exactly.” They all turned to the door as Mr. Aizawa walking in looking just as tired as ever. He looked at Bakugou and Izuku and nodded at them, something that almost looked like pride in his eyes before he took an empty seat at the end of the table. “Tsukauchi said they asked for Deku. Just send Deku in. They aren’t stupid, they will know that more of us are coming, but they won’t know who. Either way we won’t give them time to prepare. We divide and conquer.”
Bakugou's hand tightened on his and he shook his head. “I’m not letting Izuku go in there alone,” he told them staring Tsukauchi and Aizawa down.
He put his free hand on his elbow. “Katsuki-”
“No,” he shook him off, but didn’t let go of his hand. “This is my kid too and my partner. I’m not letting him go anywhere without me.”
“Have some sense, Bakugou,” Kirishima told him shaking his head. “You don’t send the two heavy hitters in right off the bat. That’s a sure fire way to get the League to throw up all of their defenses. And for all they know you are still in prison for what you did to Dabi.” He looked like he was about to rebut, but Kirishima continued through the mutter that went around the room. “I’ll go in with Deku. I’m easily the least threatening one in this room.”
“Eraser should go too,” Tsakauchi added as he nodded at what Kirishima said. “He’ll lessen the effects whatever the first move is.”
“But what about our son?” Bakugou growled.
“Ground Zero and Shouto” Tsakauchi continued like he hadn’t been interrupted, “Will go around the back. We'll chase them off to the sides where we'll have two teams waiting. Fat Gum with Creati and Woods with Ingenium. Lemillion will focus on finding the kid and get him out of there as fast as he can. Your objective is to save the kid and capture the League.” He kept his eyes on Bakugou as he said that and moved onto the others.
"This plan is stupid," Bakugou grumbled when they called it and the others started filing out and grouping up to break down smaller strategies. He was fuming, Izuku could see smoke leaking out of his clenched fists. "We should go in and kill all of them. Take Koji and get out."
Izuku looked around, the others were starting to watch them. He grabbed Bakugou's arm and pulled him out of the room. "All for One is with them,” he said softly holding his shoulders. "There is no telling what quirks they have at their disposal." He stopped talking then, trying to quell the fear that was inside of him. The last person who'd fought All for One was Toshi and he… "It's a smart plan. If it doesn't work we'll improvise." He smiled even though it felt a little shaky. "We're ending this today," he promised. And before he could say anything to the contrary, the conference room door opened and the mission was set in action.
Izuku watched in silence at the island appeared through the fog around them, Selkie's ship slicing through the water in near silence. The elevation was high, steep cliffs dropping into the water almost all the way around it. He knew that going by boat was the best option, but it didn't make him feel any better that they couldn't see the terrain at all. Aizawa stood next to him an unwavering calm with Kirishima on his other side. He was tense, but managed to crack a joke about how they should have brought a ladder as they pulled up on the stone wall. "Now what?" He asked.
Izuku wordlessly tucked an arm around both of their waists and charged his quirk into his feet and ricocheted them to the very top. Kirishima blinked in a daze but Aizawa just put his glasses down and looked around. "Check your comms," he reminded them. "The others will be at their start point soon. We need to move before we lose our advantage."
"Right," Izuku muttered wishing not for the first time that he had let Bakugou bully his way onto his team. They started walking. They had no way of knowing exactly where the league would be, but after a quick scan they discovered a half standing warehouse on the island and decided that they would go for the cover. No one had much to say, just a quick direction here and there with grunt of agreement before they were in front of the warehouse. It was too generous to call it that, it was half of a structure that looked like it had never finished going up. The roof was completely open and what had been the front had crumbled long ago giving Izuku a perfect view of All For One holding his son.
Izuku tensed to charge him but Kirishima's hand hardened on his shoulder to keep him in place. "Don't do anything stupid," Kirishima muttered. Izuku nodded and he let him go but his stomach churned and he's heart clenched when he saw Koji's eyes widen at the sight of him.
"They're almost in place," Aizawa muttered to him. "I know it's hard. But don't attack until they hit their mark or all of this will have been for nothing."
"Daddy!" Koji yelled across the grass and Izuku almost ignored sense to go to him.
"I'm right here baby," he told him and forced a smile onto his face. He refused to let it falter, not this time, not with his son the one afraid in front of him. “Everything is going to be okay.”
A blood curdling chuckle leaked it’s way out of All For One’s mouth, the only feature on his face that was anything close to human. Izuku had to wonder even now how a person could want power enough to mutilate their own body for it. How they could do it to other people? He needed to get Koji out of his hands immediately, if he ran at him now, he knew that Kirishima couldn’t stop him. Aizawa could. But would he with All for One so close? He clenched his fists at his side as he handed Koji over to the stranger on his left and stepped forward. “Now Deku,” he asked him for three steps. “How would your mentor, All Might feel about you lying? To your own son.”
He swallowed hard. “I’m not lying,” he barely got out through his gritted teeth.
“Aren’t you?” he asked with a chuckle and stopped a good ten yards away, halfway in between them. “We both know how this will end.”
“You mean how it ended the last time?” Kirishima asked. “You on your ass and All Might on his feet? He wasn’t even at his full strength!”
“I wonder why that was,” All For One asked calmly. “Would you care to tell them, Izuku? Or should I?” The silence that followed lasted a lifetime. Neither of them took their eyes off of their enemy but he could feel the questions radiating off of them like he had a mind reading quirk. All for One chuckled. “Or maybe they already know. Haven’t any of your friends ever wondered about what a coincidence it was that little quirkless Izuku Midorya caught the attention of the number one superhero in the world?”
“Shut up,” Izuku hissed.
“Testy aren’t we? How about how the decline of the Symbol of Peace happening right when you got into UA. I’m sure no one noticed how odd that was. Not that it matters.” All for One clasped his hands behind his back and shook his head. “You may have All Might's power, but you have yet to master it. You are far from the symbol he envisioned you to be. Look at you. How easy it was to break you. All because of a child.”
Izuku moved without thinking, charging forward to strike him down with a hard kick to the head. His heel collided but nothing happened and it took him a moment to stop seeing red long enough to notice the familiar swell of muscle that was holding him at bay. “Muscular,” Izuku grunted.
All for One grinned at him from behind his quirk enhanced arm. “His brain wasn’t big enough for his quirk. But don’t worry, we made use of him,” he promised and as if on cue Izuku was hit hard from the left and went flying. He went through a tree. And another. And another. And in his daze he could hear the sound of people yelling after him. His comm cracked in his ear and fell out into his palm. It had broken from the blow. He didn’t know what had hit him, maybe it was another of All For One’s quirks? But the answer was right behind him. He barely made it out of the way as a Nomu crashed down. The ground around where Izuku had been cracked as the Nomu brought both hands down in the pile driver. His landing was shaky and he only just had enough time to move again before the Nomu was back on him. Damn it was fast. He took a few quick hits doing what he could to incapacitate it, but the only thing he had ever seen completely take down a Nomu was to take off the head. Destroy the brain. Kill it. He took another hit that knocked him into a tree and coughed as the air fell out of him. He couldn’t do that.
He chanced a look back at where they came from and saw fire from the clearing. The others had gotten there. Katsuki-
Another blow came at him and he dodged it with a counter attack that knocked the Nomu off his balance. He hit him again and again but each shock was absorbed and an explosion followed the sharp cry of his son from the warehouse. He didn’t have time for this.
“I’m sorry,” Izuku whispered and hit it directly in the head watching as the Nomu slumped back against the tree.
It didn’t get back up.
The clearing was chaos. It was clear that the plan had been trashed as soon as Izuku had been knocked into the woods. Kirishima was with Iida trying to rangle Toga who had managed to take a slice out of one of Iida’s calves. Todoroki was standing guard over Momo who was on the ground behind him, her head was bleeding but she was breathing. He turned towards Lemillion and Fat Gum, they were fighting a couple of Nomu at the edge of the clearing and he sprinted at them, taking one out with a hard kick from behind and the other’s helped him with the last one.
“You look horrible,” Mirio told him, eyes wide as he looked him over.
Izuku just shook his head and looked at Mirio’s empty arms. “Where is Koji?” he asked.
“Ground Zero took him,” he said and looked around with him. “He jumped for him as soon as we came in, didn’t stick to the plan for a second.”
Izuku let out a hard laugh trying to see through the throng of people. “Sounds like Ground Zero,” he grunted and threw a small time villain into the trees as soon as he jumped at him. “Where is he?”
“Last I saw he was with Aizawa,” Fat Gum grunted as he sucked a man into his fat. “Toward the middle.”
“Izuku, wait!” Mirio shouted after him but he was in the middle of the mess a second later.
They’d been right. Katsuki was in the center of everything with Aizawa. He had Koji clutched under his arm as he fended off the attacks that All For One was raining down on them. He kept changing his quirk, never using the same one twice in a row as he hit them and he could tell that Aizawa was peeved. Izuku took advantage of his sudden entrance and rushed at them. He used an explosion as cover and sent All For One flying the same way he had after the Nomu got him.
Aizawa took a hard knee as soon as the man was gone and Katsuki rushed to him, taking Izuku’s face in his free hand that was scorching hot, scanning him before Izuku pulled Koji out of his grip and clung to him. “Daddy!” Koji cried and buried his little face into his neck as he clung onto his blood soaked uniform. “Daddy dead,” he cried so hard that he could feel his heart breaking all over again.
“No, daddy’s fine,” he promised him. “Just like I said right?” he asked and smiled at him as he pulled away, “I’m right here.”
“That bastard has gotten strong,” Katsuki told him. “It’s nothing like when All Might fought him. He’s powerful and he’s mad. And Aizawa’s quirk won’t even work cause he’s got too many damn quirks to cancel.” Izuku looked around at the clearing. Almost everyone had been captured or incapacitated, the last of them were being rounded up as they spoke. The ground started shaking and Izuku closed his eyes. His heart thumped as Koji quivered against his neck.
“You have to go,” he told Katsuki handing Koji over to him.
He took him out of reflex but shook his head. “Izuku…”
“Katsuki, please,” he told him, taking his face in his hands and holding him there. “I have to end this, I have to hit him with everything I have. And I can’t do that if you and Koji are here.” Katsuki looked like he wanted to argue with him and he knew that he was thinking back to the day that All Might had lost his power, but there was a bright light coming from the trees where he had sent One For All. Izuku kissed him hard and kissed Koji on the forehead, smiling at him. “What’s Daddy say?” he asked him.
“Gon’ be okay?” he said softly.
Izuku nodded. “I’m here, buddy,” he promised and ruffled his hair.
Katsuki’s eyes hardened as he looked at him, his resolve set as he turned to run. “Don’t you dare die,” he growled at him and pulled Aizawa up and dragged him toward the rest of the group, yelling for them to fall back.
Izuku watched them through the trees before he squared his shoulders and focused his eyes back on the fallen trees where the light was much brighter now and further back. It was fire, blue in heat as he dragged it through the brush and set everything around them off. Izuku hoped that they ran fast and silently thanked whoever had thought to call Todoroki in. All For One wasn’t smiling when he walked out of the treeline. He wasn’t making jokes or taunting Izuku about his given power. He just walked toward him with every intent to kill.
“So this is how it ends,” he said finally. “The boy hero standing alone against a god.”
“You’re not a god,” he told him, charging One for All up his body, “You aren’t even a man anymore.”
The laugh that came out of him wasn’t really a laugh. It was a cackling song that made his skin crawl. “Just what All Might would say. What would he do if he could see you now?”
Izuku smirked and braced himself. “He’d tell me to kick your ass.”
He smiled and charged.
All For One didn’t flinch and he didn’t charge back, he let Izuku run at him and took every hit with hardly a puff of breath. Muscular’s quirk came back, but it was different, covered with a hard kind of stone that was onyx black. He moved and Izuku had to dig his heels into the ground to keep from being pushed back, stumbling when he let go. He let out a shout and charged him again, more power this time, hitting him in the gut as he swung his leg around to sweep his feet. All For One fell and Izuku took his chance, he pinned him, throwing punch after punch until his knuckles felt raw and he could feel the earth shifting under them. He sat on his chest, panting as the dust cleared, heart sinking when he heard that horrible laugh again.
“Is that really all you have?” he asked and before Izuku could move, he was launched into the air. He tried to get his bearings but without the ground it was hard to tell which way was up, not that it mattered. All For One met him and hit him with a blow hard enough to drive him back to the ground. Izuku coughed and rolled trying to get out of the way, but his foot just collided with Izuku’s back and a sound he had never made before squeezed through his lips in a horrible tormented way. He watched as All for One’s scuffed boots walked around to the front of his vision.
“What’s wrong?” he asked. “Did that hurt?” He kicked Izuku hard in the face and he heard his own nose crack and grabbed at it, just barely blocking the next one. “I have to admit, I’m disappointed.” He sighed and kicked Izuku again, in the ribs. “But at least you’re fun. All Might was always so… noble. No weakness. But you…” He kneeled next to Izuku and grabbed him by the front of his uniform pulling him up. “Maybe I’ll let you live. Maybe I’ll go find that brat of yours again and kill him in front of you. Or maybe I’ll turn him against you. Just like I did to Shigaraki.”
He laughed again, but this time it didn’t make Izuku uneasy, this time it made him mad. A furious fire lit up in his stomach. He reached out to grab All For One’s hand and wheezed, “You aren’t… a god.”
“What was that?” He grinned.
“You aren’t… a god,” he told him again, a light dancing across his eyes that he had only seen a handful of times. “You’re just a sad, lonely man… who is too afraid to die.”
His grip tightened. “Why you-” Izuku head butted him and he cut off with a startled and pained shout before he dropped him and fell backward. All for One cursed and Izuku pushed himself to his feet standing over the man that had taken away the world’s greatest hero. He let his fury fill him with the heat of every past carrier of his power.
He kicked All For One hard in the gut and watched him turn over and grunted. “Get up.” Izuku wiped at his face, blood making his mouth taste like copper.
The man laughed and tilted his shapeless head towards him. “What?”
“If I have to kill you, I want you to be on your feet.”
All for One laughed harder and with a shaking arm he pushed himself off the ground until they finally were really face to face. “You really are an idiot boy wonder.” He dusted off his suit and held out his hands, palms forward. “Well. What are you waiting for?”
Izuku rushed him, but it felt different than last time. His movement was fluid and the tension built up in him was meant for attack. All For One sent earth flying at him but he immediately dodged and recentered going for the strike. The man barely moved in time, pulling the ground to raise himself into the air. Izuku jumped and caught him twenty feet up. He pulled him off his self-made platform before slamming him back down with a big enough impact to ripple the ground for yards around them. All for One groaned. When Izuku walked up to him, he threw up a wall of fire. Izuku blew it out with one finger of pressure and continued. He tried again. And again. And each time Izuku put it out. He was crawling away from him, but Izuku had no sympathy. This man stole his son. Almost killed his master. Had been trying to kill him for years. He did horrible things to people. He stole quirks and made men into monsters. He would never stop. He would never give up. Izuku brought his foot down on his leg and All For One groaned as it broke.
"What happens when you die?” Izuku asked. "Do all the quirks you've stolen go back to the people you took them from? Do the Nomu turn back to men?"
"Fuck you," All For One coughed shakily. "Always so noble. Just like your master. You don't have what it takes to kill me."
Izuku wished that he didn't. But he knew that he did and he knew that he had to if the world was ever going to be free of this horrible man. He kicked his side so that he had to roll onto his back and stepped over him. Even as he stared down at the villain, he felt his eyes swell with tears. He charged power into his fist. All of it. Everything he had. "Like you said," he choked and wiped at his face. "I'm no symbol of peace."
He hit him. Hard. Harder than he'd ever hit anything before. He felt his arm fracture on impact but he didn't move as quirk after quirk came at him--- but they weren't coming at him. It was like they were leaking out of the man below him - abandoning All for One as his body convulsed. He could feel it sucking at his own hand, his own power rushing through him like it would burn him up but he didn't stop. This had to be over. Izuku watched horrified as All for One shriveled into nothing until he was empty and broken enough that with the wind all the power blew out into the trees.
And then there was nothing left but his own pain, Izuku couldn't hold himself up any longer.
Katsuki held onto Koji the entire time the medics were checking him out. They asked a few times to let them take him and he stared at them, wrapping his arms a little tighter around the boy as he cried. He stared out into the dark. When he'd first gotten back to the ship the water had been choppy, wind twisting violently in the air. But it had stopped suddenly five minutes before and Katsuki didn't want to think about what that meant. He'd seen the weather change with All Might's power. So he stared out into the dark and refused to wonder why the air would go so still.
"I have him," Iida called through the comm. He stood up and the nurse squeaked. Koji whimpered and shoved his face further into his neck. A moment later Izuku was laying on the ground. Iida was standing above him. There was a moment before he was ordering the medics forward and Katsuki stood staring as they checked Izuku's vitals. He tuned out the noise, random words breaking through. 'Heartbeat steady' and 'possible concussion' settling some of his nerves.
"Daddy?" Koji asked in a tiny terrified voice. He turned so that Koji couldn't see Izuku and the frenzy around him.
"Daddy's just sleeping," he told him. "He fought really hard to save you. He just needs a nap." Koji looked up at him, his lip still trembling. "I love you so much," he mumbled and kissed his hair.
"Love you, Dada," Koji replied while hugging him.
He forced his way onto the ambulance once they got back to shore. Koji had quieted and was mostly sleeping, though every loud noise or movement woke him up. Izuku really did just look like he was sleeping. He had a nasty black eye, and blood covered half of his face, but he had seen him look worse- had seen him fight through worse.
Their parents found him in the waiting room. Koji clung to him even when Inko asked to hold him. Katsuki apologized, but she just pat his cheek and told him it was fine. Koji did hold on to her hand as she talked to him. His dad was out in the hall bothering every nurse and doctor for an update after Katsuki mentioned he hadn't heard anything since they had gotten there. His mom sat on his side and rested her head on his shoulder.
"I'm proud of you, Brat."
Katsuki swallowed and tilted his head back. She turned and stood pulling him to her as she hugged him. He tried to hold back the sobs, but let his mother shirt muffle them. Koji pat his face. He turned enough to look down and saw him looking up at him.
"No be sad, Dada." He smiled and felt a few more tears leak out.
"I'm not sad buddy. I'm really happy that you're back." Koji held both of his cheeks and peered at him through narrowed eyes. He looked so much like Izuku. He bit back the whine building in his throat. Koji smacked a kiss on his nose. He was startled into a laugh.
"Daddy says kisses make all better. No more hurt."
"Daddy's right. I feel better." Koji smiled and leaned against him in a lazy hug.
His dad stepped back into the room.
"He's stable. They are moving him into a room. The nurse said she'd be back to take you to him in ten minutes. I told her I'd find her in eleven." He sighed when his dad brushed his hair back. "Grandpa found something for you." He crouched down and pulled out the Suneater plush. Koji's face lit up and he grabbed it with both hands before hugging it to him and grabbing Katsuki's shirt again. He looked at his dad in surprise. "That detective found me. He said you left it at the station."
Koji crawled onto Izuku's bed and laid down next to him after he reminded him to be careful that he was hurt. He pet Izuku's hair and hummed one of the lullabies Izuku had sung to him. He sat down in the chair next to the bed and took Izuku's hand, wrapped in a heavy cast. The doctor had been brief with his explanation of what was going on. Katsuki was pretty sure Koji's wide eyes staring at him had intimidated him. His mom had pushed Katsuki toward the door before the doctor had finished. The doctor's thought he might have a head injury. The might was concerning. They didn't know for sure. Scans were inconclusive. Koji's voice quieted and he watched as he fell asleep against Izuku's shoulder. Izuku had broken bones, his arms again. He worried about that. They were already concerns for Izuku. His leg was in a cast, from the tips of his toes to his hip. He stared at his toes peeking through the end of the cast. Something about it made how vulnerable Izuku was real. He pulled the blanket over them.
He leaned over Koji and kissed Izuku's cheek. "We need you to wake up now okay?"
His mom gave him the report while Koji slept. Multiple fractures, par the course for Izuku. His arms were in rough shape, they had been a concern before, but now the doctors were concerned that he'd even be able to move them at all. They were monitoring the way his broken femur healed. They had mentioned a rod. But was most concerning to them was that he hadn't woken up. None of the tests showed any clear sign of head trauma, but it was the only explanation they had for him remaining unconscious. After he healed some they were going to do some more tests and get some specialists in. Inko held onto Izuku's other hand and whispered soothing words into his knuckles while his mom talked. He stared at Izuku. The doctor's didn't try getting him to leave. He wasn't sure if someone has spoken to them, or if his parents had scared them, but the nurse only asked for Koji to be picked up so she could do her checks.
After the second day his mom made him shower. His dad had thrust a bag of clothes into his hands and pushed him into the connected bathroom before he could say anything. Koji had immediately started crying when the bathroom door shut. So his mom sat in the bathroom on the other side of the curtain playing with Koji.
Koji held his hand while they walked down to the cafeteria. He hadn't wanted to leave, but the doctor's were going to run their tests and he didn't want Koji to be there.
He picked Koji up when they got in line.
"Daddy likes red," Koji said pointing to the jello cups. He put a cup onto the tray. "More." He chuckled and grabbed two more. "No! Daddy hates chicken."
"Are you sure Daddy hates it?"
"Yes. It's yucky!" He put the chicken back and grabbed the pork. Koji didn't say anything so he kept moving.
Once they had enough food to feed the three of them he headed back up to the room. The doctors were still there so he sat down on the set of chairs in the hall.
"What powers would Suneater get from Jello?" he asked. Koji frowned and stared at the cup in his hands.
He laughed. "What does that mean?"
"Bakugou?" He turned his hand moving toward Koji.
Koji shrieked and grabbed his hand. He tumbled off the chair and started running down the hall. Katsuki was stumbling after him before he realized it was Mirio and Tamaki walking toward them.
Koji was babbling excitedly. He could hear questions in there, but he didn't wait for Tamaki to answer any of them. Koji stood in front of him holding onto Katsuki's finger smiling like nothing had happened.
"Hey," he offered Mirio who looked amused that he was being completely ignored.
"Hi. We were in the area. Thought we'd stop by and see how Izuku was."
"Still hasn't woken up. Doctors are in there now."
Koji tugged on his arm. He leaned down. "Can I have a picture?"
"I don't know. You have to ask them."
"Mr. Suneater can I have a picture?" Koji looked up at Katsuki turned quickly back to them. "Please!"
"Of course," Tamaki said. "Can Lemillion be in it too?"
"Yes!" Koji shouted seeming to just realize who was standing next to him. Koji squeezed his finger hard before letting go and holding his hands up to be picked up. Tamaki looked at him, for permission, before picking Koji up and stepping closer to Mirio. He grabbed his phone and took a few pictures. Koji smiling so big in all of them that his eyes were squeezed shut.
"I wanna see," Koji demanded and he took him back. They looked at the pictures together and Koji mumbled about them.
"Thanks for stopping by," he said once Koji had decided he was happy with the pictures. "I have Izuku's phone. I can text you when he wakes up."
"Sounds good. I'm glad you're okay," Mirio offered Koji.
"I'll see you around, Koji," Tamaki said.
"Bye!" Koji replied, waving wildly at them. "Dada! Suneater knows my name!"
He laughed and went back to their food. His dad was leaning against the door.
"Heard him scream," he offered Katsuki's questioning look. "The plush guy?"
He nodded while Koji went back to eating his jello.
"I've seen a similar case during my first year," the doctor said. "A hero had her quirk forcefully removed. Her mind had been unable to handle the strain, and she slipped into a catatonic state. She did however eventually regain consciousness. I believe that this might be the same case. There is unfortunately nothing we can do except wait for him to wake up."
"So he's quirkless?" Inko asked.
"I believe so. Unfortunately there is no way to tell until he wakes up."
"But he'll wake up?" Katsuki asked. The doctor looked to him and offered him a small smile.
"Yes. His brain activity is already increasing. If it continues at this rate he should wake up by the end of the week."
"And his leg?" Mitsuki asked.
"We're still watching it, but it's healing well. Another day or so and we'll have a definite answer."
Kacchan had fallen again. He always fell. Ever since he got his quirk he was so careless that he was always turning up covered in cuts and scrapes that all had amazing stories. He would spend hours telling Izuku about them. About how he had fought off the big kids again. Or how he had used a blast to make himself fly. He told him over and over that once Izuku got his quirk that they would be an unstoppable team. Superhero and sidekick that never fell down and never gave up and no one would ever stand a chance.
But Kacchan kept falling. And Izuku's quirk never came.
The first time Katsuki bat his hand away had been the hardest. He had fallen from a bridge and Izuku had been so scared. Scared he had finally done it, hurt himself real good and wouldn't be able to get back up. But he got up. And something about them shifted. The way that he looked at Izuku, for the first time, like he was weak.
But Izuku didn't stop trying. He followed Katsuki because he was his friend. He watched him and waited and he tried to help him but every time he ended up hurt and burned and Katsuki would yell at him to give it a rest already.
So he studied. He watched as his classmates got their quirks and how they developed with them. He wrote down everything that he could so that some day when he got a quirk of his own he wouldn't be so far behind. And maybe if he worked hard enough Katsuki would want to work with him again-
But he didn't. He knocked him down every step of the way so that Izuku had to struggle to catch up to him. To save him. To be with him again. Even when Bakugou told him how worthless he was, even when he was too broken to keep going-- Izuku kept going anyway. Because he knew more than anything that one day they would be heroes together. Just like they had always said they would back in Izuku's bedroom with blankets tied around their necks.
Izuku felt heavy when he woke up. His arms and his legs felt like cement blocks attached to his body and his eyelids could have been sewn shut. He felt something shift at his side and he twitched towards it, but that sent a little bolt of electricity through his skull and he groaned. "Ow."
"What was that?" He heard from across the room.
Izuku felt something hit his shoulder and a high voice squealed, "Daddy!"
"Ow…" Izuku groaned again.
There was a rustle of movement from across the room and then there were hands on his face. Warm callused hands that made him smile even though his head was pounding. "Izuku," Katsuki said softly. "Can you hear me, babe?"
Izuku nodded and groaned when his temple throbbed. "My head hurts,” he told him and pulled his eyes open slowly. Everything was so blurry and bright. "Kacchan?" He asked and his eyes closed again when Katsuki kissed him.
"Yes,” he said between kisses. Izuku grinned. "Yeah, it’s me. I'm here. You're awake. Oh thank fuck."
"Katsuki," he chuckled and groaned again as he kissed him, peppering them all over his face and he heard Koji laugh from somewhere close by. He tried to lift his hand to stop him so he could talk but the brick at his side wouldn't move. He drew his eyebrows together and tried harder. "Katsuki…" he muttered again, his voice felt like gravel in his throat. "I can't… move my arms." Katsuki pulled away from him and he forced his eyes back open. "They won't…" he frowned down at them.
Katsuki shook his head. "It's okay," he told him. "You're still waking up. You've been unconscious for a long time, give it time, okay?" He rubbed his thumb over Izuku's cheek and when he nodded Katsuki looked over to his mother who was holding Koji. "Go grab the doctor?" He asked as calmly as he could-- but Izuku could hear the tension in his voice.
Mitsuku nodded and handed Koji over to Katsuki who placed his carefully next to Izuku. He looked a little scared and held onto Katsuki's shirt as he stood on the bed. "Hey baby," Izuku said softly so the gravel on his voice was less scary. "I heard you were super brave." He smiled at him and saw one twitching at Koji's face. He motioned to his side with his head. "C'mere,” he told him and after a little hesitation he let go of Katsuki and crawled over to him.
"I met Suneater!" He told Izuku excitedly and his heart swelled at the happiness in his voice. He seemed so unaffected by what he had been through and he hoped more than anything that he would stay that way.
Izuku looked at Katsuki and he nodded. "Tamaki and Mirio came to check on you a couple days ago." He confirmed.
"I got a picture!" Koji told him and made Katsuki pull out his phone to show him. Koji talked to him about it until the doctor came in and smiled at Izuku. Koji got quiet again, tucking into Izuku's side.
"I'm glad to see you are awake." He said genuinely, "You've had a lot of visitors that we've had to turn away. I'm sure they'd like to see you later if you are feeling up to it." The doctor's eyes darted down to Koji and back up to Izuku. "I heard you were having some discomfort in your arms?"
Izuku turned to Koji. "Daddy's really hungry. Do you think you could go with Oma and get me some jello?"
"Red?" Koji asked softly, but the mission made his eyes light up.
"How did you know?" He asked and Koji grinned as he slid down to the floor and grabbed Mitsuki's hand and dragged her out the door. Inko filled the space he left and Katsuki watched the pair of them out the door. "You can go with them," Izuku told him softly.
Katsuki shook his head and put his hand on his shoulder. "It's fine,” he told him. "You need me more."
As soon as they were out the door the doctor got serious. He moved Izuku so that he was sitting up and started his examination, moving slowly and talking to Izuku about everything they were looking for. They were worried about nerve damage in his arms. And his leg would have to take time to heal on its own. But now that he was awake they could bring in a healer to work on his arms and see what they could do to get him as much movement and feeling in them as they could. "It's going to hurt,” the doctor warned him.
Katsuki snorted. "You clearly don't know who you are talking too."
If Izuku thought Katsuki was bad, Mitsuki was much worse. Anytime Izuku even looked like he was going to cough she was there with a cup of water. When the healers came she sent Inko and Katsuki out with Koji telling them that the kid needed sun and they didn't need to be there to see this. Katsuki wanted to argue with her but his dad pulled him out before they could make another scene. Mitsuki held his hand through every excruciating moment. And not for one minute did she tell the healers to let up like he knew the others would have. She looked Izuku dead in the eye and reminded him that he had a baby to hold. He had a man who needed his touch and a world of people who wanted to shake his hand and he damn well better make that happen.
He was sore when they got back, but it felt so good to be sore. It felt even better to be able to hug Koji when he ran up to his bad and touch Katsuki's face when he kissed him.
His head hurt less as the week went on and as the pain went away, he started to notice what was missing. There was extra space where there used to be a pressure, an extra nerve that he could push at to kickstart his quirk. But it was gone. It was like when All For One ceased to exist, so did everything he'd ever given. Which included Izuku's quirk.
He knew it was gone. He knew that everyone knew it was gone, but no one was telling him. They chose to talk about his leg instead and his arms and the news outlets that kept calling. And the people visiting that they still wouldn't let up.
Discharge came sooner than they thought. Izuku was in a wheelchair and he would be until his leg was fully healed. Koji loved it. He kept calling Izuku a car person and honked at people as they walked by, making all of the doctors laugh. His mother took Koji with her to grab Izuku's discharge papers as Katsuki helped him get dressed. "This is good." He muttered as he helped Izuku into his jacket. "Just a couple of months and some physical therapy and you'll be right back at it."
"Kacchan." Izuku sighed and Katsuki frowned at him. "I'm not going back. I can't."
Katsuki swallowed. "Izuku…"
"It's gone." He told him and nodded when his eyes widened. "I felt it leave when he died. It was like everything rushed back into him and then he was dust and I was…" he shrugged and gripped tightly on Katsuki's hand. "Do you still love me? Even though I'm quirkless?"
Katsuki kneeled in front of him and snorted out a laugh that didn't reach his eyes. "Like I could ever stop loving you,” he told him. He stood up and kissed Izuku before he stepped back and looked at him. "C’mon." He reached out his hand.
Izuku took it. "Let's go home."
Katsuki rolled over and saw crimson eyes looking at him. "What are you staring at, brat?"
Koji grinned. "I got in."
He sat up. "What? Really!"
"Just general studies, but they said my test scores were the highest they'd seen."
"I told you," he said and tugged him in for a hug and ignored the sharp pain in his shoulder. "Did you tell your dad?"
"Not yet. He's getting food with Sumiko. He left a note on your forehead." Koji showed him the post it. "You don't think he'll be mad?"
"Why would he be mad?" Izuku hadn't been exactly excited to find out that Koji had applied to UA. Katsuki was pretty sure that the concern over Koji's quirklessness was what had tempered Izuku's reaction, and that he would be ecstatic that he had gotten in.
"I didn't think he wanted me to go to UA," Koji replied.
"You know him, he worries." Koji nodded and joined him on the couch. He looked over to him. He couldn't believe that he was already going to high school. It felt like he'd just found him wailing out in the hall. He still had a mess of blond curls, and bright red eyes. Though no one doubted that he was Izuku's son anymore. With the exception of his hair and eye color, Koji looked like a carbon copy of Izuku. He reached out with his good arm and ran his hand through his hair, suddenly struck by emotion.
"You're not going to cry are you?" Koji asked with a grimace. He could feel his eyes getting hot, but he shook his head. "Anzu said you'd cry."
"Your dad's gonna sob," he corrected as he cleared his throat and cuffed him on the side of the head. "Now help me up." Koji pulled him to his feet and straightened the sling his arm was in. It didn't really help ease the pain any. Nothing had.
"How did Anzu do?" he asked and headed into the kitchen.
"Hero's course. Top points on the entrance exam." Koji smiled, looking proud of his girlfriend. Izuku and Momo had gotten their wish the second year of middle school. He still remembered Koji asking him to help make his White Day gift. He suspected that Anzu was the main reason why Koji had applied to UA. Even if they wouldn't be in the same courses. Koji pulled off his jacket and pushed up his sleeves as he started washing the dishes that were left from lunch.
Katsuki's eyes caught on the red hand shaped scar wrapped around his son's wrist as he explained something he'd learned in class that day. It was old, but still stood out against his skin. He remembered coming home to a sobbing Sumiko running into his arms. She'd tripped and fallen and had grabbed the closest thing. It just happened to be her eight year old brother's arm. She had only gotten her quirk a few weeks before that and had no control. Her quirk was similar to Katsuki's, only she wasn't able to ignite her sweat, instead it just boiled on her skin until she touched something. He remembered walking in to Koji with a smile plastered on his face even as Izuku wiped burn cream over the vicious looking mark. Izuku had a burn on his neck from their daughter as well. Katsuki had always, and would always hate seeing them injured, but as Sumiko trembled and cried in his arms he didn't know how to stop it from happening. That was years ago, but his heart still ached when he saw the scars.
He heard the door open and called out that they were in the kitchen. Sumiko ran in with a bag in her gloved hands. She dropped it as soon as she stepped into the room. He hoped that there wasn't anything breakable in it. She stood in front of him and bounced as she told him about the people she'd seen at the store. As he watched her he smiled at her sharp crimson eyes as they lit up. He had been surprised when she had first opened her eyes and he saw crimson looking back. Her hair was a deep green, and while straighter than Izuku or even Koji's, it still looked like theirs. He had been sure that she would take after her other father. And for the most part she did. Her eyes, the quirk simmering behind the gloves, and her temper were all from Katsuki. He was grateful every day that she'd had Izuku. She got angry and frustrated easily, but Izuku was always there to talk her through it, to help her back toward calm.
Izuku walked in, asked Sumiko what the bag was doing on the floor and stopped in front of him as she scrambled to pick it up and put it away.
"How was your nap?" Izuku asked leaning down for a kiss.
"Good, until it got interrupted by the brat," he replied. Koji flipped him off with his soap covered hand.
"Oi!" he called. Izuku set the bags down on the counter with a laugh.
"You're home early," Izuku said and pressed a kiss to Koji's temple as he started to unpack their groceries. "I thought you were studying at Anzu's tonight." Katsuki looked at Koji who focused on the dishes.
"Koji has something he wants to tell you," he told Izuku and tugged Sumiko against his legs. "Watch this," he whispered to her. She grinned in mischief, her eyes sparkling as she looked at the two across the room.
"I heard back from UA," Koji said and looked over to Izuku.
"What'd they say?" Izuku asked and glanced at Katsuki, but he made sure that his face was blank.
"I got in," Koji said quietly.
"You got in?" Izuku parroted back at him. Then he smiled and repeated it louder. Then again. He looked at Katsuki then hugged Koji. "I'm so proud of you!" Izuku said and shook him. He could see the relief make its way through Koji as he hugged Izuku back. Sumiko climbed onto the counter next to Koji and asked a million questions as Koji finished up. Izuku sat down next to him, his hand rubbed at his thigh. Most of the wounds from that final battle had healed, but his leg still gave him trouble if he was on it for too long.
"Did you take your meds yet?" Izuku asked. "I ask because you're getting that wrinkle in your forehead again." Izuku touched the middle of his forehead. He pushed himself to his feet and grumbled as he passed Izuku. "I love you too!" Izuku called after him.
He pulled open the medicine cabinet, and when he shut it he looked at his reflection. He still had scabs littering the side of his face. The bruises had mostly faded, though there was still a nasty green one on his jaw. He opened the bottle with one hand and took the pain pills. He touched his shoulder and pain immediately flared. He put the bottle back and sighed before heading back out into the kitchen. Koji and Sumiko were bickering over what they were going to get for dinner. Koji wanted ramen, but Sumiko wanted fried chicken. Koji was suddenly ten again as he whined to his sister that it was his night so he should get to decide. He stood next to Izuku and set a hand on his shoulder, he didn't see the point of sitting down if they were just going to leave again. Izuku leaned his head on his hip and held his hand.
"You sure you're up for it?" he asked quietly.
"Will you carry me back?" Izuku asked and grinned up at him.
"I'm too old for that," he mumbled. Last week he would have without question. But now he was feeling the decade of hero work and with each year past it, he felt like another decade was added on. He understood why most people retired before they were forty. He only had a few years until he hit that point and he didn't know if he'd reach it. He still didn't know how Endeavor had continued on for as long as he had.
"We should see if the Todorokis want to join us." Izuku looked up at him. He could see the question in his eyes. "Why don't you call Anzu and ask? And you need to get changed," he told Sumiko and sent her running up the stairs. Koji followed after her already on his phone.
"Are you sure that's a good idea?" Izuku asked.
Katsuki squeezed his hand. "Yes. It wasn't his fault."
"It was," Izuku said sharply.
"Are you going to be okay?" he asked with a grin. Izuku made a face at him, telling him how much he didn't like him mocking him.
"He almost got you killed," Izuku said like Katsuki had somehow forgotten. He could still hear Izuku's voice breaking through the fog of pain as he yelled for Shouto to leave them alone. But it hadn't been his fault, no matter how much Izuku had needed someone to blame at the moment. He just wished Izuku would let himself see that now that Katsuki was up and walking around.
"Maybe it was a good thing," he said. Izuku looked at him like he had gone insane. "That sponsorship is ending in a week, I don't have any new cases. Now would be the perfect time for me to-"
"Retire?" Izuku finished. He had risen and was holding Katsuki's face. "Do you mean it?" They'd talked about it for the last few years, but every time something would come up and Katsuki would take on an assignment or a new contract and he would keep working. He could see the hope on Izuku's face that this was really it.
"I think so. You should have had Shouto hit me with a wall of ice years ago."
"That's not funny," Izuku told him, but still smiled as he kissed him.
"Ewwwwww," Sumiko called as she came running back downstairs. She covered her eyes even as she grinned.
"What? You don't like kissing?" Izuku scooped her up and kissed her. He joined him until she was laughing and pleading for them to let her go. Izuku let her down when Koji came back down and said that the Todorokis would meet them at the ramen shop down the street.
They'd moved out of their apartment as soon as Izuku's rehab had finished. Koji had refused to walk up the stairs, and Izuku didn't like walking by the blood stains that never really faded. They had bought a house out on the edge of town. It was only two extra bus stops from their parents and they had room to grow, room for Izuku to have an office. He worked as a quirk counselor for the middle schools in the area, where he helped kids find uses for their quirks that they hadn't thought of yet. Izuku's office was full of pictures from kids thanking him for helping them accept their quirks. There were even a few letters from heroes that hadn't realized their potential until Izuku had shown them what they could do.
They walked down the street and when Izuku's limp started to show he took his hand. Maybe they should get a car back. He heard 'Sumiko' shouted before the blur of white collided with her. Ume laughed and dragged Sumiko off toward the shop, her hand wrapped tightly around Sumiko's glove. He watched them go before turning. The first thing he saw was Momo's stomach. He knew she was pregnant again, but hadn't realized that she was that pregnant. She poked him and told him it was rude to stare as she hugged him and then hugged Izuku. Shouto stood back looking as painfully awkward as he ever did. Katsuki glanced over at Izuku and squeezed his hand before offering his arm to Momo. He knew that they needed to work this out on their own. As the two teenagers walked ahead of them he smiled. Koji had his arm around Anzu and they were giggling about something.
"She beat your record," Momo said.
"He beat yours," he replied. She laughed. She looked happier than he'd ever seen her as a hero. After she'd had Ume, she'd started teaching at UA. He heard that she was even tougher than Aizawa.
"Are you guys expecting us to have another one now too?" he asked when she put a hand over her stomach.
Momo chuckled. "Oh no. This one was a surprise," she said quietly and rubbed her stomach. "How are you?" she asked when they were far enough away from their husbands.
"Shoulder feels like shit, but I'm fine. I've had worse." A few years ago he probably would have joked about it. But the entire situation had been bad. A villain with a jetpack in his arms had flown Katsuki high enough that he'd almost passed out, but not before breaking one of the idiot's hands. He'd been dazed as he fell. He would have hit the ground, probably wouldn't have woken up from that either, but Todoroki had seen him falling and reached out with his ice. The jetpack fool wasn't the only one they had been fighting though. The moment Todoroki had moved to build his slide of ice and snow, another villain attacked and instead of catching Katsuki, it slammed into his side and sent him through an office building wall. He hadn't really been awake for that though, and when he had woken up in the hospital it was to Izuku yelling. He'd seen the tears, but not their children, and he knew that it had been bad. Worse than any of the other times they had ended up in the hospital. That was two weeks ago and the doctors had done everything they could. His body just needed to heal now.
"Ume, no!" Anzu said and grabbed her sister's hands before they could pull Sumiko's gloves off. Sumiko tugged the glove back up her wrist and frowned as she watched Momo talking to her daughter.
"You can't let her take them off," he reminded her.
"I know! But she said she'd been working on her quirk. That it took a minute for Anzu's golem to melt it."
He held both of his daughter's hands in his and looked her in the eye. "If you want to test your quirks you can, but only with an adult around okay?" She nodded. Izuku and Shouto walked in to him crouched and Momo leaning over with a hand on her stomach.
"What did we miss?" Izuku asked. Sumiko walked into her dad's legs and hugged him. He held up his hand and glanced at Ume.
"Oh, well we should find a table. I'm hungry, are you hungry?" Sumiko nodded her mouth a little wobbly. Once they got seated, it didn't take long before the two girls were back to playing.
The conversation circled around back to the kids as Anzu made a tiny golem to tease her sister. "Have you decided what you're going to focus your studies on?" Momo asked Koji. Katsuki looked at him. He'd been wondering the same thing. Koji changed his plans for the future like he was flipping through TV channels.
"I think quirk safety." Koji looked around the table. "The government spends so much money on heroes, but doesn't pay enough attention to the ones who are just trying to live their lives. Schools shouldn't be able to ban Sumiko because of her quirk, but it's okay because no one in the government cares. There are plenty of people out there who can't turn their quirks off." Anzu squeezed Koji's hand. He looked over to her and she smiled. He watched as the frustration dropped out of Koji's eyes.
Anzu turned back to the table. "And he isn't even talking about the safety and job security of the increasing quirkless population." In the years since All for One's death the number of quirkless children being born had increased. Izuku had a notebook full of theories, but no one had yet figured out what was causing the increase.
"Maybe if there were more people like Dad, there wouldn't be as many villains and people wouldn't get hurt as often," Koji added.
"How many villains got steered that way by the nature of their quirk?" Anzu asked.
Koji met his eyes. "How many people thought some heroes would be better off as one? If we can help them as children, then-" Koji smiled and looked at Anzu.
He looked at these kids, so sure of their beliefs. They were the children of former number one heroes, people would listen to them. They'd make the changes that he hadn't even thought of.
Victory had always been the thing he'd wanted most in life. Koji had changed what that meant to him. Victory wasn't just standing tall at the end of battle and sacrificing anything as long as he won. Victory was coming home to his family. It was late nights of homework, and tears over classmates. It was holding Izuku in his arms as their kids argued over what movie to watch.
Izuku's hand found his. He looked over to him and his heart swelled with pride. They were talking about the end of the need for heroes and the beginning of the peace that they had been striving to create for their children. Maybe victory could be this too. Watching his children as they shaped their own future and went beyond what he'd ever thought possible.
Hello wonderful readers!
First, thank you so much for reading our story. Its started off as just a small and fun BakuDeku to appease the pain of waiting for season 4. But now season 4 is here and the story is over and we are so sad to see it go!
Today happens to be my 4 year anniversary with my husband, so it feels really good to leave this story here where Bakugou and Izuku are happy and in love and proud dads. I tried my best to get DNA to change the very end to say "Go Beyond Plus Ultra."-- but she very wisely would not ruin her beautiful Epilogue for my amusement. So just imagine it's there for me.
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!
-Prubbs and DNA