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Burnt Sugar (Katsuki Bakugou)

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Katsuki Bakugou and his friend Eijirou Kirishima finished speaking with police about the villain they had just apprehended.  They leaned up against his black BMW as Bakugou contemplated what he was going to do next. The villain that had specifically targeted him because of a run-in they had had earlier that day when the man sexually harassed his girlfriend, his girlfriend that was in love with another man - another hero.

The hero in question, Suneater, had tried to restrain him during their fight and Bakugou used his quirk to be released from his hold. The bigger problem was that he hadn't realized he propelled the hero into danger and he was pinned by a large concrete beam.

Reina Togata, Bakugou's girlfriend, ran to Suneater's side and didn't leave him for anything. He caught glimpses of her lovingly caressing the hero's cheek, holding his hand, and whispering to him. Bakugou screamed at her to leave, telling her that she was going to get hurt, but she refused. That was the moment he knew that she would never love him like that and he just couldn't handle it.

Bakugou sighed with frustration as Kirishima pulled him out of his thoughts, trying to convince him to go see Suneater - also known as Tamaki Amajiki,  the man whom his girlfriend was in love with. "You need to come, Bakugou."

"For the last fucking time, shit for brains. NO."

Bakugou was getting really fucking fed up with this entire situation. He was mad at himself for not realizing he was pushing Tamaki into a dangerous position, but the asshole didn't listen to him before, right? That part wasn't wholly his fault. He was angrier that Reina didn't listen to him and the fact that she, in his opinion, threw herself into harm's way just to hold that jerks hand made him livid.

"Dude, he could've died. You need to go. And he's friends with Reina so you know she's there, you should be there for her."

"She's in love with him. That's why she was such a fucking idiot, you know that, right?" Bakugou shook his head at the thought.

"What? Really? Did she tell you that or are you just reaching? They're childhood friends, bro. That's a strong relationship."

"She told me. They both love each other but can't make it work because of her brother or whatever and were going to fuckin move on." Bakugou ran a calloused hand through his sweaty hair. "She wanted to be honest with me and I told her that I didn't care if she loved him, as long as she cared for me and didn't fucking try anything with that asswipe."

"Fuck," Kirishima whispered as he pieced this together all of the information he'd previously been given from Tamaki himself. "Do you still not care that she's in love with him?"

Bakugou had been asking himself that question a lot lately, especially at night when his thoughts would run rampant. Could he be with someone who couldn't fully give their heart to him? Could Bakugou really handle watching them in the same room together or knowing they were right across the street and could see the other whenever they wanted? Knowing that she would never be able to love him as intensely as she loved Amajiki?

"No."

Kirishima patted his friend's shoulder, leaving his hand there to rest after the third time. "I don't blame you, man... so you're going to break up with her then?"

Bakugou's chest burned from hearing the words aloud. The words he didn't want to utter himself because he wished the situation was different. He wished Reina loved him like that but she didn't and she doesn't.  After seeing how destroyed she was today, he knew he couldn't stand in the way of whatever they had.

"Guess so."

-

With a heavy heart, Bakugou trailed behind Kirishima until they reached the room that Amajiki was in. His eyes landed on Reina's beautiful golden hair as it cascaded down her shoulders while she let the wall hold her up and rested her eyes. He cleared his throat as he stood in front of her, "Can we talk?"

Reina opened her bloodshot eyes and nodded before she pushed herself off of the wall and fell into step with him down the bleach scented hallways of the hospital. "You shouldn't have been so reckless, Reina. You could've gotten seriously hurt... you could've died."

"That's like the pot calling the kettle black, Katsuki. You ran in there without a second thought about anything...anyone...unprepared. He was trying to help you." Reina kept her voice down as they continued their walk. They both knew how this conversation was going to end and Bakugou was scared to even look at her. He knew that he'd change his mind once he swam in the ocean of her eyes and just be hurt more in the long run. Bakugou needed to do this for himself, he needed to be loved the way he deserved.

"I told him to back off and he fucking didn't. It wasn't only my fault, Reina."

"If you hadn't rushed in it wouldn't have happened at all."

Bakugou's hands clenched at his side. Of course, she wouldn't see this the way he did. Of course, she would take his side. "It could've been ten times worse if I hadn't stepped in."

Reina could hear the strain in his voice and she knew that on some level, perhaps he was right. "Yeah, maybe. Guess we'll never know..."

"Did you even think about me before you rushed to him? Before you started whispering sweet fuckin' nothings into his ear like a forlorn lover?" Bakugou couldn't hold back the sharpness of his tone, he was hurt so much that it broke his heart - something he didn't think was actually possible.

"Did you even think about the situation I was just in moments earlier with that villain before you tossed your god damn keys at me and ran away?"

"At least I'm not in love with someone else," he spat.

The words made Reina stop in her tracks. "You knew what you were getting into, Katsuki and you said you didn't care! You can't just throw that in my face like it's some surprise."

"Well, I guess I do fucking care, Reina! How could I not?! You guys fucking stare at each other like you're Romeo and Juliet! Like Togata and I are the shitty parents keeping you apart when really it's just because you're both too fucking scared that it won't work out." Bakugou pulled at the roots of his hair, knowing that the situation they're in was all because she wouldn't talk to her brother, Mirio Togata, about being in love with his best friend.

"I'm sorry," her voice was quiet and full of guilt. He exhaled slowly to cool himself off but when he did, his emotions just weighed more heavily on his heart, "I just...I wish it was me you loved like that. Even though I know you care about me, it'll never be as strong as you do for him."

Bakugou's shoulders slumped as he shoved his hands in his pockets, "I don't wanna be another thing standing in your way of being with him."

Her eyes softened, "Katsuki, that's not what you are."

He shrugged. "It kind of is...you need to talk to your brother, Reina. I don't think it'll be as bad as you think."

Bakugou's heart ached as he knew he was pushing the woman he loved into another man's arms, but when you love something you've got to let it go, right? Even though it's not what he wanted, Bakugou knew that deep down it's what Reina wanted, even if she won't admit it to herself, or out loud.

"So this is it then?" She sighed with a defeated tone. "Yeah, this is it." Bakugou held his arms open and she wrapped hers around him.

"I'm sorry, Bakugou," she mumbled into his chest. He let his chin rest on top of Reina's head, "Me too."

When their hug ended and Reina walked back toward Tamaki's room, Bakugou wanted to call out to her. He wanted to take it all back and tell her that he's going to fight for her, that she should choose him, and that he loves her. Bakugou knew it wouldn't change anything though, because when she yelled at him during his battle with the villain, he saw in her eyes that she would've died before she left Tamaki's side. He wished that one day someone would love him that much too.

-

Bakugou bumped into Kirishima as he was leaving and his red-headed friend had collected coffee for whoever was up at Amajiki's room. Though Bakugou wasn't crying, it was clear to Kirishima that he was upset by the hurt that lurked behind his crimson eyes.

"You okay, man?"

Bakugou stared blankly at his friend, "What kind of dumb ass question is that, Shitty hair?"

Kirishima sighed as he glanced down at the tray of coffees in his hand to make sure he wasn't spilling anything. "Let's grab a beer later. Usual place?"

"Fine," Bakugou grumbled, both not wanting to admit that he didn't want to be alone all evening but also because he was annoyed that his friend was going to visit the asshole that the woman of his dreams was in love with.

"Okay, good. I'll see you later, Bakubro. I gotta go before these coffees get cold."

"Whatever." Bakugou shoved his hands in his pockets so roughly that he tore a hole in the seam of one of them, cursing loudly as he walked through the motion-activated door. The door closed with a whoosh that ruffled his hair, leaving him to mumble profanities about the 'fucking stupid hospital and its fucking stupid doors and the stupid fucking people inside of it.'

He stared at the sidewalk, making an effort to step on every crack as he went. It was something he used to do as a kid when he was angry at his mom, the phrase 'don't step on a crack or you'll break your mother's back' would be repeated in his mind with each step. Now though, this just became a habitual thing he did whenever he was upset about something.

Of course, because he was too preoccupied watching his calculated steps in time with the sharp thumping of his broken heart, he crashed into someone. He got a look at the woman who now slightly frowned at him and had quickly noticed the thick bangs that hid her olive-toned eyes and her long coal coloured hair that practically blended into her cropped black leather jacket. She was hot, but it didn't matter - especially not today.

"Watch where you're fucking going, bitch," he sneered as she steadied herself from the bodycheck she took from him. The woman, Kaiya Kitamura, pulled out one of her earbuds even though she had heard him perfectly clear. She shrugged. "Maybe you should watch where you're going, man."

Kitamura put her earbud back into her ear and walked away, pulling a joint out of her front pocket as she did so. She sparked it up as she continued on her way, leaving a trail of dragon's fire with each step she took, not bothering to wait for a response.

Bakugou stood there for a moment as he stared at his car a few feet ahead, incredulous that those words just came out of that woman's mouth.

-

Home was the last place Bakugou wanted to be so instead he just went to the bar that Kirishima was going to meet him at. He sat at the vast mahogany bar at the back of the venue and flagged down the blonde male bartender. "Beer."

Kirishima knew his friend well enough to know that he was going straight to the bar so he had sent out a text to their friends to meet him there and that he'd follow shortly after.

-

After two beers, Bakugou felt a large hand clap his shoulder and he didn't bother to look back, he just took another swig of his drink. "What?" His dead voice startled his friend, Hanta Sero, who was the first to arrive.

"Whoa, I didn't think you were this bad. You didn't even yell at me, man."

Bakugou turned to face him and glared before he noticed a raven-haired woman with him and shifted his narrowed crimson eyes as he registered who it was. Kitamura laughed when she recognized him as well. "What a coincidence, huh?"

Sero looked at his female friend and lifted an eyebrow. "Oh, your friend and I met earlier. He's kind of a dick, hey?"

Kitamura's eyes flickered back to Bakugou and she watched as his jaw clenched and a fire burned behind those red orbs of his. "Prove me wrong," she smirked and he just turned around to stare back down at his beer.

He was getting a real case of deja vu here, as the first time he had met his now ex-girlfriend was when she bumped into him on the street as well, though she wasn't as rude as he considered Kitamura to be.

Just reflecting on that memory had his heart squeeze in his chest like a ripe orange in a juicer and this was not the time for reflection. Now was the time for forgetting and that's exactly what he planned on doing.