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Whistleblower

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"What do you think that's about?" 

On his way from today's after-school training session was Shouta Aizawa: teacher, pro-hero, and all-around dark cloud with which to rain on others' parades. He was currently on the phone, waiting for a reply from the man on the other end. 

"…Gee, it's hard to say! I mean, you know some people reckon that with each generation, quirks're getting stronger, harder to control. Could totally be that even with this generation, kids' quirks are just too strong for their bodies to handle. Kinda scary, if you ask me!"

There was a scuff through the speaker, followed by an electronic chime that sounded as though it had been put through a staticy filter. The rest of the background noise seemed to fade away. 

"In any case," Hizashi Yamada continued once his surroundings were quieter, "it's pretty lucky that he's okay."

"Oh…"  A sheepish expression passed Shouta's tired features, and he switched the phone to his dominant hand as he headed back up the path to campus. 

"I was talking about Shinsou, actually, but… thanks for the pearl of wisdom."

Hizashi stifled laughter; the embarrassment could be heard in Shouta's voice, which amused the blond. "Shit, how could I have missed that?" he teased. "Of course you meant Shinsou-kun."

"Yeah, well," Shouta huffed lightly as he sank into his capture cloth. "Anyway…"

"Anyway!" Hizashi hummed knowingly. "That kid’s finally makin' some friends, so it makes sense he'd be worried about what happened to Kaminari-kun…"

The sound of a crosswalk chirp scratched through the receiver, then faded away. Heart-rate still up from training, Shouta pulled his unruly black waves into a ponytail to cool the back of his neck.

"It must be because they have something in common now…? Even if it's… quirk-induced seizures," he frowned. "But you’re right, quirks that damage their user are on the rise…"

Hizashi smiled to himself, tapping the cochlear implant on the right side of his head. 

"I hear ya, love."

He sniffled in the cold air and sighed through his nose, though not out of weariness — just quiet, and affectionate.

"Oh! So you got the text, right?” he remembered. “Whaddya think is so important they had to call us over after 9 o'clock, huh? My guess is they're gonna try and catch the damn clown who keeps switching the regular and decaf coffees in the teachers’ lounge. Nezu's putting his paw down, dude! Can't have us falling asleep on the job!"

"Ah, damn. I wanted to catch a nap while I was there,” the ravenhair sulked.

“Yeah, good luck with that~” 

Upon Shouta's arrival to the staff meeting room, he managed to slip in with the tail end of teachers reluctantly making their way in. He looked across the room as he approached the large, U-shaped conference table that could seat the whole faculty. This evening, there were only a handful of teachers present. Clearly, not everyone had thought the emergency meeting urgent enough. Shouta wondered how he’d let Hizashi surreptitiously get him to attend, and whether or not he should slip out before anyone saw him.

“Yo, Eraser!!”

Now waving him over was husband Present Mic, whose cockatoo-like crest of hair stood out vividly as he invited him to sit together. On the table were two cardboard Starbucks coffee cups, one for each of them. Realizing there was now no escape, Shouta took his seat and glanced at the receipt on the paper cup belonging to him: dark mocha, his favourite. Of course.

“Thanks.”

“Treat for a treat~” the happy blond declared. “And check out mine — dulce de leche, yo!”

"Mic, you hit up the 'Bucks at this time of night? Don't come crying to me when you can't sleep," Midnight smirked from across the table. "You're the last person in the world who needs that much caffeine."

Always a bit theatrical, the radio hero threw his arms out to the side, narrowly missing the noses of his neighbors. Shouta, who was used to Hizashi's impulsive and grandiose gestures, simply leaned back in his seat with his coffee against his lips, easily dodging the hand that came flying his way.

"Ohh, come on!" Hizashi cried in mock offense. "Who said anything about sleepin'? I got tests to grade, Kayama!"

But it was then that Principal Nezu shut the doors to the meeting room and shuffled his way to the head of the table, climbing up into his seat.

"Okay, okay, everyone settle down," the little chimera commanded, and the heroes around the table followed it. “Thank you to those of you who were thoughtful enough to show up. I won’t take much of your time.”

Elbows on the table, Hizashi laced his fingers under his chin and gave Shouta a stealthy wink, accompanied by a little kiss to the air — a public display of affection that wouldn't make his partner uncomfortable — before turning his attention back up front.

Shouta's heart fluttered just so, and he hastily redirected his gaze to the white, mouse-like animal that held the rank of principal at UA. In those beady black eyes, Shouta saw reflected the usual lightning-quick intelligence that Nezu was known for, but also a deep unhappiness; an unrest of the spirit. 

His drink pausing moments from his lips, the Erasure Hero's own gaze flicked over the faces that sat around them, and witnessed in more than several of them a similar, and familiar grief. Hizashi had noticed it too, just in time for the bated hush to fall over the room, and for him to realize there was a significant presence missing.

“Is it All Might?” he squawked. “Is he okay?”

The former #1 Hero was never in great health, but recently he’d been on a brief medical leave. His absence was felt in any room.

“All Might is quite alright,” Nezu returned brusquely. “This is something else, if I may please have everyone’s attention.”

Hizashi took the hint and shut up. 

Despite the grief, Nezu was positively unwavering in his posture and tone. There was not so much as a tremor when he spoke, he was merely somber. 

"What I'm about to tell you is going to headline the 10 o'clock news less than an hour from now. I wanted you to hear it directly from me than have to find out from the media."

Nezu straightened up, clasping both paws behind his back.  

"The reason I have gathered you all here is… well, it’s a deeply unfortunate tragedy,” he continued. “A fellow Pro Hero and teacher at Ketsubutsu Academy, Emi Fukukado, was found dead in her apartment earlier this evening."

What had begun as a dead silence then exploded into a clamor.

"Wait — what?!"

"No way!"

"Ms. Joke? But how?!"

Shouta lowered his coffee back to the table… he could no longer stomach it. 

"Was it Stain?!" Somnambulist seductress Nemuri Kayama, hero name Midnight, had jolted to her feet.

  "He’s still in Tartarus, so no. This… was no murder," muttered Vlad King, the homeroom teacher for class 1-B. "The police are ruling it a suicide."

Another hush staggered down the table, but it did not last long — several of the heroes immediately made more outbursts, including Present Mic, who lurched up to his feet as well, eyes wide with disbelief.

“That’s a load of crap!” he snapped to Vlad, slapping a hand down onto the table. “That’s Ms. Joke you’re talkin’ about! Someone must have broken in and caught her off guard — some Stain wannabe — ”

"I can’t believe it. Not another one. Not Emi — " Thirteen cried, covering the front of their helmet with gloved hands. "That's impossible, she — there must be a mistake. It had to have been an accident."

"I understand your feelings. But the truth is, there was not a single sign of a struggle in the apartment," Nezu gently assured the distraught Space Hero, who, together with Present Mic, fell silent again. 

"No forced entry,” added Vlad, pinching the bridge of his nose. “Everything was where it belonged. They… found her body hanging from a support beam in her bedroom. A stool had been kicked over beneath her, and a note was found folded neatly on the bed. It was no accident or homicide."

"A note?" piped up Ectoplasm somewhat dubiously, adjusting his glasses — he'd shown up in his civvies, making him almost unidentifiable. 

This time, Nezu nodded. 

"They called forensic analysts to the scene and confirmed it was her handwriting."

Chilled and at a loss for words, Hizashi Yamada sank defeatedly back into his seat, glancing over his shoulder at his partner — the last of them to have interacted with her in person, at the Provisional Hero License exam. Now Eraser Head’s hairtie sat discarded on the table, leaving his stormcloud of hair to settle over his face. That was telling enough. 

Homing Hero Snipe thumped a leather-clad fist down upon the smooth teakwood desk.

"Then it ain't her!" he declared. "She wouldn't — now I reckon it's an imposter, hear me? A fake!" 

"Well," Nezu replied uncomfortably, "no. HA found no reason to deem the death suspicious. According to the preliminary results of the autopsy — "

"Jesus christ."

The low hiss cut across the table from Shouta, who turned his head away after the outburst.

They understood why though… this wasn’t right.

“Was her body even cold yet?” growled UA’s lifestyle guidance counsellor Hound Dog, real name Ryo Inui.

"Please," Nezu enunciated, in a warning tone that, from such a cute little creature, shouldn't have given them goosebumps as much as it did. "I share your grief. It's important to express yourself, but I'd like to finish speaking. Now, the full results will be available in a few days, but…"

Once Nezu resumed speaking, Hizashi reached out to his husband, finding his hand and gently closing his own over it for comfort. 

"… in the meantime, a candlelight vigil is going to be held at Ketsubutsu Academy tomorrow night. Funeral services are currently being planned for this weekend… "

Hizashi’s sickly-sweet latte no longer felt appetizing for him, either; in fact, a sort of sickness had settled over the group as a whole.

This loss was not the first of its kind, either — Hizashi guessed this was the third hero suicide since the beginning of the academic year… maybe the fourth. None of them had exactly been keeping count. The isolated incidents across the country had certainly been saddening, but… life went on. UA had already had such a chaotic year; these things simply faded away into the background.

This was just the first one to hit close to home.

"Oh, Emi," Midnight lamented, hands in her voluminous hair. 

"May I ask… what the note said..?" asked Cementoss, appearingly particularly choked up for a sapient block of cement. 

"That is not my place to divulge," Nezu replied frankly. "I'm here only to deliver the news and acknowledge my responsibility as caretaker of UA here. In the coming days, we'll meet again to discuss measures to better uphold the wellbeing of our staff and students so that nothing so tragic ever happens here."

"Boss… you know there's kids still up right now," the Voice Hero posited, his hand still on Shouta's. "Some of them are gonna see this news break, whether it's on TV or the internet or wherever… you got something to say to them in the morning?" 

Nezu cleared his throat. "A fair question, but it will be taken care of," he answered. "We won't draw attention to the incident itself; we'll make a PA announcement reminding our students that grief counselling is available. Hound Dog's schedule is quite free — isn't it, Inui-san?"

Hound Dog, in all his muzzled terror, nodded in affirmation. Hizashi held his tongue about the state of UA’s counselling network — it could wait for the next meeting. Tonight, everyone was tired, upset, and wanting to just get the hell out of here. 

"If there are no further questions, I think that concludes the briefing," Nezu announced, climbing back out of his chair. "Please refrain from speaking to the press on the matter should you encounter them on patrol."

There was a weary grunt of assent through the room, and everyone began to gather their things and stand up. Not all of them left right away, however — most of them began to check in on one another instead, discussing the heavy news and being supportive. The main lights in the room were then turned off, so they gathered in the gentle yellow light of the annex to talk.

“What an awful thing,” Nemuri exclaimed, somewhat deliberately standing in the doorway when Hizashi and Shouta approached. “Who could’ve known someone like her would do something like this…”

Cementoss and Ectoplasm might have gotten out before she did, but the rest were going to have to stay and chat.

Present Mic couldn’t help chiming in on the conversation. “There’s damn well a lot more that can be done to prevent this shit, you know…? Man…”

A filtered sniffle came from Thirteen’s speaker, but they did not remove the space helmet that obscured their face. Hound Dog abruptly tossed them a box of tissues, which were of course useless, and that a surprised Thirteen nearly dropped, but it was the thought that counted coming from a less-social individual like Inui Ryo.

“Thank you!” Thirteen said with a wet chuckle. Hound Dog folded his arms, shrugging bashfully.

“Mrrhh…”

“Anakuro-san, you holdin’ up okay?” asked Vlad King, an equally intimidating but actually very caring member of staff, who just had to check up on everyone before heading home.

The Space Hero nodded. “Yeah… thanks. I think I’ll head home, cuddle up with my dog and some wine, just binge-watch Terrace House ‘til I pass out.”

“That sounds good; me ‘n Rumi could keep you company if you like. Girl’s night!” Nemuri offered.

“What?! So I can’t join?!” Hizashi chirped, flashing a grin. “Kidding. Does sound fun, but I’ve gotta get the lug to bed. You know.”

He gestured with his thumb over his shoulder, to where Shouta had already zipped himself up inside his sleeping bag and begun to doze off in the dark room. Though he may have been cut off from the exit, he had successfully avoided conversation. The group’s glances drifted over to him.

Nemuri put a hand on her hip. “Hey… is he going to be alright?” she asked, lowering her voice. Shouta and Emi had also been familiar, and her death had clearly come as a shock to him.

“Oh, right,” Thirteen uttered, covering where their mouth would be on their helmet. “I forgot that she…”

“Keep it chill, listeners,” Hizashi intervened, giving them double finger-guns accompanied by a smile and a wink. “He’s good! You know how he is. Gloomy, quiet, but he’s always there when it counts! I got it handled.”

Had the two men not been married to one another, someone might have come to speak to Eraser Head, asking after his well-being… and how he would have loathed that. It was a good thing Present Mic had the sitch handled. He and Eraser Head always had each other's backs. 

The others didn't have to worry about their colleague when Hizashi was there, he proudly thought to himself.

The morose chatter continued for a minute or two, where Blood Hero Vlad suggested they have their pet dogs join up for a walk sometime soon, Thirteen agreed, and turned to enquire what the others would be getting up to.

“Pub,” said Snipe gruffly. “Pour one out, I reckon. You boys comin’?”

“Tests to grade,” Vlad shrugged, only for Hound Dog to clap his shoulder with one clawed hand.

“Screw it for tonight, man. I could use a drink.”

“Man needs a drink,” Snipe agreed. “Someone’s gotta keep him outta trouble, and it ain’t me.”

Hizashi scuffed the sole of his boot on the composite tile, slipping a hand into his leather jacket pocket. “Pro’lly same for us; I just got us some Sapporo the other day,” he considered, thoughtfully twirling his little mustache. “Cup Noodles ‘n beer, man, don’t need much else. Catch up on grading later.”

“I swear, you two still live like college kids sometimes,” Nemuri huffed, but it was with a faint smile of endearment and a loose flap of her hand to shoo him away. “Anyway, go be with your man. I happen to have a lady waiting at home, myself~"

“Well, I won’t keep ya! Take care, listeners~”

The others bid their farewells, and they all parted ways, leaving Hizashi alone to approach Shouta in the unlit room as the rest of the group’s footsteps receded. The Voice Hero crouched down before the sleeping bag with his husband inside, resting his forearms atop his knees and letting his hands dangle down.

“Heyyy… wakey wakey, Sleepy Head,” he cooed, enunciating the nickname in English. 

He received an irritated groan in reply, but Shouta rolled over and lifted his head, glancing over his shoulder. The harshness in his expression softened minimally when he saw it was Hizashi smiling down at him.

“Wanna bounce?” he asked with a sidelong jerk of his head, gesturing with his thumb.

“Hmmh…”

With a reluctant, annoyed sigh, Shouta sat up, unzipping the sleeping bag. Once he was on his feet again, Hizashi gave him a peck on the cheek and took him home. 

Their untouched coffees were dropped in the nearest bin, and they returned to their dorm via the most direct route possible — they both just wanted to be alone with one another to process this hideous news, without anyone else's pitying gaze upon them. 

Hizashi let them in, where they were greeted with a joyful mewl from their cat, a beautiful and impossibly fluffy tuxedo ragdoll by the name of Nyoko, who immediately wove between their ankles.

“Hello, lovely~” Hizashi cooed. Shouta was quick to pick the lovely creature up and cradle her in his arms — a welcome sensation to come home to after such a long and difficult day, especially when she purred right on cue and gently headbutted his scruffy chin. Hizashi leaned in and kissed Shouta's cheek, followed by the top of Nyoko's tiny little head, then Shouta carried her off to the bedroom. 

Nyoko was placed upon their bed, and both men began to strip. Hizashi watched Shouta with a furrow on his brow, but the man had his back turned.
The raw knowledge of Ms. Joke's death weighed heavy on their shoulders, and they were hurting — Hizashi just wanted to help take their minds off it for a little while. He did as he always did when confronted with an uncomfortable silence, and began to chatter.

“Hey… I dunno about you, but how's a date night in sound?" he asked, combing his flaxen hair down from its usual crest before burrowing for his pyjamas from a messy pile of laundry in the corner. "Couple cold ones and a movie? Spooky movie? We haven't had our spooky fix in forever! I could go for something old, but then, I’ve also heard there’s a few good—”

"Hizashi…"

"Mm — yeah?"

It shut him up as he turned in the direction of the voice. Shouta was sitting on the bed in his black sweatpants and matching long-sleeve shirt, his phone in hand, and he looked over his husband plaintively.

"Do I… read it?"

"Read w…" Hizashi began, pulling a pair of pink track pants up his thighs, before he realized and trailed off. 

Present Mic hated the press for a lot of reasons — and the relentless disregard for personal privacy was very much a top contender. The fact that they had already found out and leaked such a deeply private, tragic document for clicks…

“Shit, man…”

He hesitated for a moment, but then threw a white v-neck shirt on, found his eyeglasses, and crossed the room, joining Shouta on the bed in a kneel. When his glasses were in place and he had a look at Shouta's phone over his shoulder, the clickbait headline he'd more or less expected to see blared across the screen: 

'Ms. Joke's tragic last words?! An exclusive look!'

The blond let out a long sigh through his nose, shoulders sagging with the motion like he was deflating himself.

"We'll read it together," he decided, putting his arm around Shouta's shoulders. “It’s a message to the world.” 

Eraser Head nodded stiffly, and passed his thumb over the hyperlink. Together, they watched the page load over the small, glowing screen. Ignoring the headline, Shouta scrolled the stuffing of the article looking for something that would stand out. Before they could see, a paywall popped up and Shouta grit his teeth. Hizashi was quick to take over, being more technology-savvy.

"Hey, I got it, no worries," he assured, kissing the side of Shouta's dark head. Almost as if reading a dead woman's last words was going to be a good thing.

Then there they were, staring at it, a farewell of considerable brevity:

‘I'm sorry. I couldn't keep smiling anymore.’

Shouta visibly cringed away from the sight. Abruptly, he flipped the phone over and set it aside facedown, turning his face away from Hizashi.

"Goddamnit…"

Hizashi just slipped his arms around Shouta's shoulders, fingers interlaced to lock him into a secure embrace. He rested his forehead against a raven-black temple, which had begun turning silver in the last few months, and simply let him feel whatever he was feeling

"I'm here, man. It's fucked, huh…"

"Yeah," Shouta whispered. "Sure as hell is…"

They sat huddled together like that for a few minutes, giving Shouta time to process his thoughts. In times like this, Hizashi didn’t feel like he was any good at knowing what to say anyway. He just understood that sometimes, silence was better.

"We know how she was," the weary Erasure Hero finally spoke. "She liked me. Maybe if I'd… just…" 

"Shou," Hizashi reminded him in a soft tone, "you are a happily married gay man. Don't go down that road, yo. There's nothing you coulda done for her there."

"Fuck, I know," Shouta groaned, his hollow eyes furrowing into a deeper frown. "What I mean is… I didn’t have to be so… dismissive. Maybe if I'd been friendlier to her, she…"

“Hey,” the other said firmly, forcing Shouta to meet his eyes. “You’re pretty much like that to everyone, because that’s just how you are! I love you for you, and I wouldn’t want you to be any different! And I reckon… she probably felt the same way. What happened was… just gonna happen.”

Shouta exhaled deeply, taking a moment to rotate his old elbow injury. “There might have been nothing anyone could do."

"Well, some people never do reach out," Hizashi conceded, a lock of hair washing over his shoulder, "but I really believe if they got the care they needed, tragedies like this could be avoided."

"Could they? Em — Ms. Joke… No one had a damn clue — she fooled all of us with a fake smile so we wouldn’t know," Shouta returned, taking his partner's hands and leaning against him. Upon each of Hizashi's inner forearms, at the wrist, were a series of old white scars from when he'd been just a teenager.

“How is anybody supposed to know…?" he lamented. "I mean, what if you were— ”

The sight flashed him uncomfortably back over a decade — remembering when Hizashi had first put those wounds there, after… that person’s funeral. That such an exuberant boy could be driven to such drastic means… seeing his sunshine with his hair limp and aviators discarded, sitting on the bathroom floor in a sea of blood and tears, Hizashi hoarsely begging him to make it make sense. 

That was not the last time he would do such a thing to himself, either; Shouta remembered all too well the university incident, where words were exchanged that they both regretted to this day.

"Shou," the Voice Hero repeated, more firmly this time. 

Having followed Shouta's gaze, Hizashi abruptly pulled him out of the painful memory and back to the present. Turning his wrists over, out of sight, he offered his very warmest smile. 

"You don't needa worry about me, okay? No matter who it is, all it takes is to ask, ‘Are you okay?’, and you can save someone!”

“So,” Shouta murmured, obsidian pupils disappearing behind lowered lashes, “… Are you?”

Hizashi's smile softened as he felt a flutter in his chest. 

Ah…

It was really Shou’s friend who had died, but he still took the time to make sure his husband was alright. With a swell of affection, Hizashi hooked an arm around the man's and pulled him in for a hug. 

“Yeah, love. I’m fine,” he asserted, kissing Shouta's neck as his head pressed into the crook of Hizashi's shoulder, concealed behind that waterfall of golden hair. "None of that shit for me anymore. Life is beautiful, baby, especially with a hunk like you~"

"I have to know you'll be okay," whispered Shouta, his grip tightening incrementally. "Zash…"

Heart positively melting, Hizashi extracted Shouta from his nook and pressed a tender kiss to his slightly-chapped lips. 

"Hey… I’m good, ” he soothed him, covering Shouta’s hand with his own and taking it to his cheek, nuzzling it. “You’re good. Listen… bend an ear to old Mic for a second, will ya?”

"As long as you're not intending to prove your point in song format," said Shouta. 

"Not today," Hizashi found himself grinning. Shouta inclined his head in permission and got a little more comfortable on the bed. His heart felt a little lighter for his lover’s reassurance and praise.

“Fact is… there’s nothing anyone can do to change what happened,” Hizashi began frankly, but he wasn’t without sympathy. “We’ll go to the vigil tomorrow night, can show anyone else who’s hurtin’ that people care. In the meantime… it won’t do us any good to drive ourselves nuts with all the what-ifs ‘n other self-blamey shit. Y’know?”

Shouta exhaled slowly through his nose, turning this over in his head. Of course, he knew this was true; it was just logical.

“What in the hell do we do if we can’t help it?” he muttered, shifting his little finger on Hizashi’s cheek so that it entwined with his partner’s. “I’m sure we’re not the only ones sitting here wondering if we could have done anything better.”

The Voice Hero conceded this, tilting his head thoughtfully, and he gave Shouta a nod of agreement as he returned the tiny gesture with their fingers. 

“Okay. Think of it like airplane safety protocol. In an emergency, you put your own oxygen mask on before you help someone else with theirs. So… I say, let’s put our oxygen masks on by settling in with a movie, and ride out the worst turbulence before we land and plan our next move. Nothing like a violent horror movie to soothe the spirit, am I right?" he added with a snicker. “I’m thinking… 'The Thing'. The 80s one, in all its synthy glory. What do you say?” 

Shouta searched Hizashi's verdant gaze for a long moment. How he longed to just go to bed and make it be tomorrow already, but… if he could give the man he loved a familiar and comforting distraction from the night’s devastating news, then he’d stay up just a little longer for him. Hizashi wanted this. He was long-winded, but he’d made his point with an apt enough metaphor. Clearing their minds probably was a wiser course of action, no matter how tired either of them might have been. Better not to go to sleep on an aching heart.

"Yeah. Sure thing."

Hizashi craned back in and took his partner's lips into his own. He held that kiss for a moment, humming into it and appreciating the feeling of Shouta's untamed scruff against his own face — clean-shaven but for a petit blond moustache. 

"Alright, you sit tight, and I’ll get us some brewskis and a munch, ‘kay?" he chirped when he drew back, lovingly brushing black-nailed fingers through the scruff on Shouta's jaw and scampering off to the kitchenette.

In just a few short minutes, they had the movie up on TV, curled up on the bed together in what Hizashi called their “blanket nest”. Each of them had a bottle of fine, chilled Japanese beer in hand, a styrofoam cup of instant ramen noodles in the other, and together they watched the camera pan over the white Antarctic tundra to the opening credits.

For the final touch to the blanket nest, Shouta pulled their thick, crisp comforter over the two of them. They didn't often use UA's internal heating system; why fuss, when you have perfectly good cold-weather clothing, blankets, hot water and a loving husband to keep you warm? This was their comfort zone, right here. They were horror movie nuts — not that anyone could ever guess — and it was like this that they could begin to unwind and let the troubles of the day disappear, just for a little while.

Once the plot really began to move and they'd gotten some alcohol into them, Hizashi's ease to distraction had him playing with Nyoko there on the bed while his eyes were on the television.

"Ooooh, is Nyoko-chan gonna eat our braaaaains," he cooed, holding her under the arms and letting her long body dangle down to the blankets, feet lightly resting atop them. He wiggled her sweet, fluffy little body as if she were using a hula hoop, and danced her over to Shouta.

"Shouta, is our cat a bodysnatcher who's gonna eat our entrails while we're sleepin'?" he asked with a grin, wobbling her little outstretched arms at his husband. "Nyoko-chan, are you an alien blob thing from Antarctica who's gonna turn us into fleshy gross Eldritch horrors? Are you gonna do that, baby~?"

The feline had no reply, of course; she just stared up at Hizashi with pure apathy, waiting for him to stop whatever he called… this. Shouta just drank deeply from his current beer bottle, emptying it, and set it aside. 

"She just might if you keep manhandling her," he told his husband flatly, but the corner of his mouth twitched back in a smirk. "Watch her tail. She's pissed."

Surely enough, when Hizashi looked, that magnificent black dust mop of a tail was swishing back and forth, so he laughed and let her go (though not before he gave her a sappy, doting kiss on top of her head again). Once released, she padded away to the foot of the bed, where she laid down and began washing herself to smooth down the fur that Hizashi had ruffled up.

Helping himself to another beer, the blond snuggled up to his husband, resting his hand on Shouta's back and giving it a little rub. 

"This is nice, though," he mumbled pleasantly as he glanced back up at the TV. "Feels like forever since it was just you 'n me an' the princess for comfort horror night."

“Been a few months. When was it last… Kamino?” Shouta murmured as he reached for another beer, rather wishing he had something a little stronger in the way of liquor.

“Who knows, man,” Hizashi replied.

Though he did know, thinking about unhappier times was the exact opposite of what they were trying to do here. Luckily, the beer was still doing its job, allowing them to relax deeper into the film and the pleasant warmth of their soulmate. Like this, they both felt a sensation of safety, security, and peace. For a little while, the world wasn't so tiresome.

After a while, an unprompted kiss to the top of his head from Shouta successfully distracted Hizashi.

“Fuck, you’re sweet,” he cooed, returning the gesture and nestling closer. Shouta's warm body beneath him was so comfortable and inviting, and he couldn't resist splaying a hand across the man's broad, firm chest. Hazy from the beer, though not too much, Hizashi set his green eyes onto the face before him with nothing less than pure adoration, circling a finger around a clothed pectoral.

“Having fun?”

Tearing his eyes from the timelessly tense scene where the characters tested to see whose blood actually belonged to the alien, Shouta observed Hizashi's behaviour, and offered a wry smirk as he drained the latest bottle.

"Tell me, Zash, are you enjoying your self, or has your mind wandered away…?"

An unmistakable glint appeared in Hizashi's eyes, and he never broke his gaze while the circle his finger traced grew smaller and tighter, until it was orbiting a nipple beneath Shouta's loose sweatshirt. 

"Well, I'm definitely having a good time," he replied, absentmindedly rolling the nub beneath his fingers. "But I might be a little distracted. Can't help that when I'm in bed with such a hot silver fox, though~"

Shouta's eyes slid down the body before him, then back into Hizashi's eyes. 

"Thought we agreed you wouldn't call me that," he crabbed. "My hair isn’t grey just yet. Come on, you love ‘The Thing’.”

This was very true, but Hizashi Yamada was hypersexual. Once his mind slipped into that space, it wasn't easy to ignore.

To his credit, he did try to keep his hands to himself and pay attention to the movie, but his eyes and ears simply would not process the information going into them. Instead, he daydreamed, thinking about all of the dirty things he wanted Shouta to do to him, which made him pitch quite the tent in his track pants.

Only twenty minutes followed the exchange before he was squirming and flushed with anticipation. He was hopeless.

"Hh…" he groaned into Shouta's chest, breathing in his unwashed, masculine scent headily. Feeling yet another insistent nudge against his thigh, Eraser Head huffed. 

"Tch. You've gone and worked yourself up…"

"Mm," Hizashi mumbled into Shouta's shirt, swallowing back his racing heart. Glowing back to his ears with blush, he bunched Shouta's shirt tightly into one fist, exposing just a couple inches of sculpted abdomen and the most perfect dusting of dark body hair in the world. He uncurled a pinkie from his fist to brush through the coarse treasure trail, and shivered from the excitement of possibility. He decided to go for it.

"You know how bad I want you to fuck me into the wall right now, Shou?" the salacious blond asked, voice low and husky as he returned eye contact to his husband. "Or how bad I need your dripping cock in my mouth?"

The dark-haired man felt the words die in his mouth for just a second as Hizashi's disclosure shot straight to his loins. Oh, so he was serious horny.
They stared each other down for a long moment, in a battle of wills to determine the outcome of the night’s events.

"…This cock is bone dry.”

It was the first thing Shouta could think to say, and it was so unexpected to Hizashi that he broke, sputtering with laughter that he tried and failed to restrain, throwing his head back to let it loose.

"Did you just fucking say that to me?! To my face?" he hooted, chest heaving. " 'BONE DRY’!!!"

Evidently, Nyoko decided that Loud Dad was being much too loud, even with Sleepy Dad there, for she got up and jumped off the bed before slinking out of the bedroom, both of her human companions too wrapped up in one another to notice her making her exit. Hizashi rolled onto his back, weak from laughter and covering his face with his hands, which was just so damn infectious to see that even Shouta couldn't help it when he dissolved into chuckles himself.

"You heard me," he grinned, and Hizashi weakly smacked a hand down onto Shouta's thigh.

“I’m trying to seduce you, man,” the blond snickered, turning and propping a cheek up on his knuckles. “Where’s your sense of romance?”

“And I,” Shouta declared, pushing Hizashi back by the nose to make him fall back, “am trying to watch the movie that you suggested in the first place.” 

He paused to drain his latest beer, happy with his boozy status, and pointed the bottle at the screen. At current, the Antarctic scientists were in for a fright as the imposter's blood reacted to the hot wire, causing it to reveal its hideous true form. 

"You're a weird guy if you can think of romance at a time like this."

With a sheepish grin, but determined now, Hizashi climbed up and sat himself upon Shouta's pelvis, obscuring his view of the screen.

"Bet you can't watch the movie when I'm here," he challenged, one hand planted firmly on the pillow under Shouta's neck. The other held his husband's chin so he could sweep a thumb across those handsome, kissable lips, through which a hot, shuddered breath escaped.

"Kurt Russell'l still be there when we're done," he reasoned, leaning in so closely that their noses nearly touched, and locking eyes with him. "We can rewind. Can you really say you're not into the very willing and sexy DJ who wants to ride your perfect cock all night?"

“Bah…”

To further prove his point, Hizashi gently gyrated his hips in a slow circle. “Right now, I’d rather look at Shouta’s handsome face while he makes me feel out of this world amazing, and touch every inch of his smokin’ bod I can reach.”

When he leaned in further, this time their noses did touch. His lips hovered just over his husband’s, breath pushing hotly against them. He could feel Shouta’s quickening pulse under his fingertips, and Shouta himself knew it perfectly well, beginning to melt under every convincing word of praise. 

“When I know you know just how to wind me up and make me hot,” the shameless entertainer went on, “fill me up and make me moan your name like your own personal bitch… there’s no way I could think about anything else. Just you…”  

This gave the noiret pause, and he looked Hizashi over at his own discretion. Damn the man, his body and his mouth made very convincing arguments… Hizashi just smirked when he felt Shouta’s stiffness twitching beneath his backside. Resist though Shouta might, the sight of his beautiful husband rubbing against him so aroused and eager always had the intended effect. Spellbound, the Erasure Hero reached up, carding his fingers through a silken sheet of hair.

"Well, I see you're wearing my pants, so you were going to have to undress anyway. I guess I'll let you have some fun," he sighed playfully, feigning reluctance.

Hizashi chuckled in victory, continuing to grind away at him to coax Shouta's loins further to life.

"Your pants are comfy," he hummed, the hand at his husband's chin migrating down to his exposed collar bone under his loose sweatshirt. "In fact… so comfy, you just might have to take them off yourself if you want them back~"

Pushing the black sweatshirt up his husband's battle-scarred torso, Hizashi pressed a feather-light kiss to each one before making his way up to a set of firm and masculine pecs, to service a dusky nipple with his wet lips and tongue.

Ah, who else could make his heart nearly race right out of his chest…? Not a man alive… It was just Shouta. And for the Erasure Hero, it was really the look of shameless lust in Hizashi's eyes that convinced him in the end. It was the way it made him feel wanted at a time when he felt so utterly wretched.

"Have it your way, Yamada," the younger of the two chided with a smirk. "You smug fuck…" 

With that, he pushed Hizashi down onto the mattress, flipped him over, and yanked down the cotton pants from behind, pinning him down at the small of his back. Hizashi had not even a moment to react to suddenly being 'set free' when his husband's rough hand struck his backside, rippling one perfect, pert ass cheek. 

The blond gasped sharply at the enthusiasm of the unexpected, yet perfect clap to his backside, the sound from which was almost more startling than the burning sting itself. He sank his blazing hot face down against the blankets in utter discomposure… Shouta had neve done anything like that, and what a delicious surprise it was now that he had.

"Oh," he breathed, eyes fluttering shut, and it was as though that fluttering motion rolled down his chest to settle deep in his belly. "Holy fuck…"

Shouta pulled his shirt over his head and dropped it carelessly over the side of the bed to the floor.

"You already out of comebacks?" He tossed his head back to let his dark hair re-settle, and then loomed over his smitten husband, rolling the man onto his back once again. "Nothing else clever to say?"

‘Oh’, indeed. Hizashi had awoken a mighty beast from a deep sleep, and the thrill of it sent a twitch of anticipation directly to his cock.

"Nope," he answered breathlessly, raising his hips with a grin. "I got nothin'. Let's fuckin' rock, baby~"

At last surrendering to desire entirely, Shouta’s dark eyes gazed deeply into Hizashi’s, lingering for an indeterminate moment.

“Show me what you want,” he whispered into one multi-pierced ear, relishing the shiver it put through his husband’s body before he drew back with an expectant look.

He loved riling Hizashi up on purpose, and was not disappointed when the radio host proceeded to pin him down and crush their lips together in a ravenous, bruising kiss. Hizashi was not afraid to use his teeth either, tugging at Shouta’s lip with them and fogging his glasses up from the intense, heavy breathing.
At the same time, he was pulling Shouta’s tracksuit pants down, and the kisses began to fall upon the Erasure Hero’s torso in the opposite direction of earlier — he had a very specific destination in mind. Soon after he dropped his folded glasses haphazardly onto his night stand, they were fully nude and locked in a passionate embrace, eager to fuck their problems away.

After a day as hellish as this one had ended up being, the sight of Shouta’s cock was a treat worthy of gods. Hizashi was no god, but he greedily drank in the view, slithering down and resting his cheek on a coarse, scarred and hairy thigh to behold the proud erection before him.

“Hell yeah….”

To Present Mic, Eraser Head had not a single thing on his body worth being ashamed of — and his cock was no exception by any means. Just the right thickness, the perfect length for swallowing up or taking inside him, which Hizashi adored in equal measure. He traced a finger down the shaft from the tip of the glans, eyes roaming over every ridge and vein without restraint, before he reached the bottom and cupped Shouta’s perfectly round, supple balls in his palm. He swiped his thumb over the hair there, already leaning in and nuzzling his cheek against his husband’s shaft. 

“Fuck… perfect every time,” he sighed, gently pressing it into his cheek to give pressure to all sides, and kissing its length with a deep, heady sigh. Hizashi mouthed along the length before him, one hand caressing the glans while the other massaged his testicles, appraising every last inch like a jeweler scrutinizing the world’s most rare and valuable diamond.

Shouta hummed lowly in his throat, eyes closing at the reverent handling.

“Nice…”

In return, he offered a few enticing strokes to Hizashi’s artfully pierced flesh. To this day, he could not fathom the desire to pierce one’s own genitals, but… it made Hizashi happy enough, and, Shouta had to admit, it felt damned good inside him. He couldn’t resist rubbing his thumb back and forth along each of the barbells at the shaft’s base, and wantonly did so.

In response, Hizashi jerked his hips into Shouta’s hand, whining softly from the back of his throat. 

“And don’t tease,” Present Mic begged. “You’re gonna drive me c — oh fu — !!” his voice rose in volume only to abruptly cut out, dissolving another sharp gasp when Eraser Head’s rough, strong hand took the entire shaft and balls into a firm squeeze. With it, Shouta’s hair stood on end, rising halfway into the air, that crimson glare fully activated and silencing his partner.

"Watch your quirk," he warned in a low rumble, pinning Hizashi back against the pillow, his golden mane of hair splayed out over its crisp white surface. Intimidated, but more than that, heavily aroused by witnessing Shouta’s quirk in the bedroom, Hizashi shuddered and nodded, clamping one hand firmly over his mouth. Once it was clear he understood, Shouta’s hair was reclaimed by gravity once again, and the glow to his eyes faded back into darkness.

"Good,” he murmured, satisfied. “We don't want a repeat of the other —"

“I knooow, don’t remind me, you villain,” Hizashi pouted, diverting Shouta’s focus from the embarrassing memory the best way he knew how.

"Mnh—!"

Shouta shivered at the sudden sensation of his nipples being toyed with — something of a weak spot for him. He arched his back, pressing his thick, coarsely-coated pectorals further into HIzashi’s talented fingers. Shouta nipped hotly at his husband's neck and collarbone as they ground against one another, moaning intermittently as Hizashi lolled his head back to give him more room to suckle and bite his skin.

After several long moments of further foreplay, Shouta grabbed Hizashi's ass once more, this time to deeply caress his tight entrance in sensual circles with the pad of his thumb, indicative of what he wanted next.

But he needn’t ask — the English teacher was a split second away from begging for it, himself. Breathing hard, he dropped his head back against the pillows, disheveled sunny hair in his face, lust-hazed eyes locking with Shouta's.

"Shou…" 

His soulmate's name left his lungs in an amorous sigh, begging without asking, starving, desperate to be filled. Hizashi's hands clutched Shouta's broad and powerful shoulders as if for dear life, and his narrow hips ground up against the larger man's lap like they had a mind of their very own.

In moments, Shouta had them both lubed up, and was hastily preparing the man beneath him, scissoring two slick, masculine fingers deep inside him. Even this sensation drew hungry, feverish writhing from the man before him, a breathy moan accompanying each exhale. Poor, hypersexual Hizashi… to deny him like this was just cruel. 

"I know, babe. I've got you," he whispered, and met his cock to the ridged orifice Hizashi desperately needed penetrated.

“Hn, yes — ah, fuck,” his lover gasped, grinning with delight, but he lost his voice when Shouta’s thick member began to fill his heat, inch by glorious inch. It was an otherworldly experience.

If there is a God, thought Hizashi somewhat nebulously, then Shouta Aizawa's cock is His finest creation.

Trembling with every inch that filled him up, toes curled and pelvis arching clear off the mattress, he bit down on his lip to discourage even the tiniest moan from escaping him once they began to move.

And once they did begin to move, Hizashi could see stars with every thrust.

The two of them moved in tandem with one another like a well-oiled machine, their pants, gasps, and sighs filling the room to the rhythm of the creaking bed.
Bodies became damp with sweat, and they were intoxicated with one another's scent and sound in the dim light of the television screen. It was all they breathed as they fucked, panting softly in one another's ears between noises of approval.

“Oh, oh , dude, fuck yes,” Hizashi gasped, and Shouta broke into soft laugher as he pushed himself into the other’s heat.

“That’s a turn on, right there,” he snickered.

“Yeah? Make you wanna cum?” Hizashi returned impishly. “I’m… close…”

They always fucked according to Shouta’s duration. With Hizashi’s condition, he often got too close too fast and needed to be edged until the other reached his limit as well. Shouta seemed to know instinctively whenever that time was approaching and would cut him off from release without slowing his own ascent.

After a while, it became necessary to do so. Shouta closed his fist over the glans with a powerful grip, never able to resist teasing his thumb across the head’s slit, spreading pre in its wake. The way Hizashi bucked his hips like a wild animal, dissolved into a cursing, hot blushing mess, was one of the sexiest things he could think of, and the thought alone could bring Shouta to climax.

“Shit… o-okay, I’m there,” the Erasure Hero whispered, “Cum with me, Zashi…”

Hizashi made a strangled peep of affirmation. “ Shou…”

The wait was worth it. Once he knew he was ready, Shouta let go of Hizashi’s desperate cock, and brought them to their finale.

“Oh, Shou, aaah, ah—!!”

If Hizashi had thought he’d been seeing stars before, the last push against that perfect spot deep inside him made lights burst behind his eyes twice as brilliant and blinding as the sun. With a hoarse and strangled cry, hips cringing as he curled in on himself, he painted his stomach with hot spurts of his essence, bliss permeating every nerve in his body.

Gasping and pumping his hips to the last thrusts, biting his hand to keep from screaming out his pleasure, Hizashi melted to the sound of Shouta’s deep groan of satisfaction as he emptied himself inside his soulmate, filling him with heat and the last dredges of raw pleasure.

Nngh…”

Limbs quivering as he supported himself over his lover’s body, Shouta rode out a much-needed orgasm to its completion. Then, with a smile reserved only for the beloved blond beneath him, he carefully withdrew himself. A whimper escaped Hizashi’s chest as he felt the nudge of Shouta’s dick slipping out of his hole, and cum began to seep out in its wake.

Shouta took in the sight of Hizashi like this with a pleased smirk. Was there anything more beautiful in the world than seeing that look of radiant euphoria on that handsome face?

Certain there was not, he lay down beside his partner and held him in his arms. Hizashi reciprocated the precious embrace, hiding his face in the crook of Shouta’s neck as their sweat mingled. Nothing needed to be said; it was simply how they were. They already read each other so well, there was no reason to ask pointless questions, or say inane things, when it was clear with one look how thoroughly they’d satisfied each other. 

They lay like that together for several minutes, simply taking each other’s presence in while their hearts calmed themselves. When they realized, though, that they were hearing the movie’s end credit music, they glanced into each other’s eyes and had themselves a small chuckle of amusement. Rested enough, they sat up, Hizashi slipping his glasses back on before taking charge of the remote to return them to the last scene they remembered seeing, while Shouta took a piece of tissue paper to wipe Hizashi’s seed off of his stomach and clean him up with an arm around his waist.

It wasn’t long before they were settled back in bed to finish the movie — the main difference this time was that they were comfortably nude, contentedly exhausted, rings and limbs entwined. Hizashi used Shouta’s shoulder for a pillow while they watched the rest of their film, Shouta’s bicep supporting his neck, but he could still reach his fingers to Hizashi’s hair, which he played with with affectionate absentmindedness.

It was just… comfortable. The weariness of the evening had, for just a little while, disappeared into the background of their consciousness. 

“Love you,” Hizashi murmured with a tired smile, not taking his eyes off the screen.

Shouta glanced at him briefly, watching him watch the movie, and leaned over to kiss the top of that handsome golden head. 

“Love you, too.” 

The film began its approach to the third act again, and this time, they watched without any interruptions — for once, they didn't even heckle the characters' choices, simply being too tired to do so. 

Predictably for Hizashi, his sex-exhausted, beer-addled mind wandered as he became significantly less awake, his buzz giving his scattered, disconnected thoughts an odd but pleasant floating sensation inside his head, but without the gift of coherence. 

After a while, at the film's climax, when most of the characters had already perished, one such thought passed the speech filter and escaped Hizashi's lips in a drowsy slur:

"Hey… I wonder… who's gonna be next in the chain?"

Shouta, who was more alert than that, glanced down at his partner with a furrowed brow.

"Huh…? What kind of question is that?" he mumbled, fingers brushing a lock of hair from Hizashi's face, but when he received no follow-up or clarification, he realized that the man had finally fallen asleep — eyes gently shut, red-framed glasses askew in front of them and lines of exhaustion beneath.

His expression softened, and he carefully reached over to tug Hizashi’s glasses off his nose, remove the magnetic external piece to each of his cochlear implants, and set them on his bedside table beside the forgotten lube bottle.

After settling in, Shouta lay there for a time, watching the silhouette of Hizashi's torso rise up and down with each breath. 

In the silence, thoughts flooded through his head like violent rapids. Eventually, such churning waters would be quick to claim him, dragging him under, deep down into the familiar numb.

Don't drown, he thought, kicking the blanket off himself, but he felt no less weighted down.