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House hunting. 


Pro Hero Deku had been fighting the strongest of villains since he was in his first year at UA, but somehow this task felt more grueling and intimidating. He had spent more time interviewing and calling realtors than he did when bringing on an intern to his agency. 


He had spent countless nights up at ungodly hours scrolling through their sites, comparing and contrasting each and every profile he had access to. He had phoned every friend in his contact list asking them who they used when purchasing a home. Once Bakugo had enough of his babbling and mumbling, he simply set up an appointment at their shared agency for Izuku and Ochako. 


Although he felt ambushed coming into his office, reading glasses pushed into place and a mess of files and papers in his arms, he was grateful to his longest friend—even if the action seemed contrived based on the high-five he offered Ochako. 


Their realtor was a perfect match. She was firm and gentle, listening to all of Izuku’s mumbling before presenting both him and Ochako with several homes to look at. Then he was back to obsessing, entrenching himself in blueprints and layouts. He was thinking of every detail, even the ones that seemed far in the future. 


Would they need bedrooms for children? Should he have a large kitchen? How many bathrooms? What if his mother and Toshinori needed to stay with him? At one point he was looking at multi-family homes and wondering if he should prepare for retirement. 


One morning, a rare one that he and Ochako both had off, he stood over her as she scrolled through his spreadsheets and charts ranking each option. His T-shirt hung loose on his body, and he rubbed his wife’s shoulders. She relaxed into the touch, scrolling haphazardly. “Izuku, you're overthinking this.” 


He snorted a bit and looked down to meet his wife’s serious yet sensitive gaze. She sighed and gently grabbed his hands, running her fingers over the scarred tissue. The pads of her thumb traced each line etched into his skin in thick bands, a map of each battle he had fought. He sighed and half shrugged, holding her hands a little tighter. “Am I? I just want to be prepared for everything ahead of us.” 


Ochako tilted her head empathetically, careful to keep her pinky floating away from the strong hands gripping hers for strength and support. “Izuku, have you ever thought that maybe you are so worried about having a home because you’ve never lived in one? You always lived in apartments right? So…you never had a space that was part of you.” 


He chewed the inside of his cheek. He hadn’t thought about it that way, and he certainly wasn’t ready to analyze every action he had made the past few months. But the fact that her point hit a cord and felt almost agonizing likely meant something. He shared the same apartment for several years with his mother, but once he moved into the UA dorms...he never went back. 


It didn’t feel like a home, but rather a collection of memories, many that he would rather leave behind. When he was there he was reminded of the disappointment that he and his family felt when he was told he was quirkless or each time he was bullied in middle school or when his dad left ‘for work’ and never came home. It was more of a prison than a home.


His wife, who was raking her nails delicately through the curls, broke his thoughts. “I think it’s great you put all this work into it, but why don’t we just pick one. We can pick one and tour it. It doesn’t have to be the one, but let’s at least start out.” 


He let her words wash over him and sunk into his seat. “I don’t think I am overthinking this and making it too complicated. I mean the charts help and everything,” he said quietly. “But I see how it can look that way and my organized chaos is just chaos to most people. I guess just pick your favorite from my top three.” 


Ochako gingerly dropped his right hand to turn back to his notes. “Easy! We are touring number two. I will let our realtor know.” 


His jaw slacked and his voice raised in pitch. “H-how do you just pick quickly like that? You hardly looked at it.” 


“Sometimes you just have to feel it. And I have a feeling that no matter what, we are going to have an awesome time touring our very first option tomorrow! I’ll let Bakugo know that you will be out for one more day,” she said and grabbed her phone. 


Izuku crossed his arms, wearing a playful smile as she typed her message. “Well good luck, Bakugo would never let me—“


“He said, and I quote, ‘anything to get Deku to stop talking about square footage or how many trees is too many for a yard.’ So I think we are good to go.” She stood up and pressed a kiss to his cheek. “It’ll be fine. More than fine.” 

His night was restless while Ochako’s words tumbled around in his head. He hadn’t ever had a home. And he certainly hadn’t ever settled into the house he bought for his mom when he had his first year of hero work under his belt. 


He wasn’t part of the process. At the time, he had said it was because he was too busy; but looking back, he didn’t want to. His mother had even offered to keep a room made for him and he declined. Yet, every month, he wrote the checks for her bills and mortgage. 


But buying his own home meant picking up the shattered pieces of his fragile childhood and putting them back together. It meant rebuilding and examining each crack in his memory. Above all, it meant moving on past the pain his father’s absence caused. And he had realized in a silent car ride that he was the only one who hadn’t completely moved on. 


Buying a home was a leap of sorts. It was a step into building a family, and Deku had grown used to his hero life. In short, he was terrified. He didn’t want to be like his own father, but he hadn’t had an example. Besides, heroes didn’t exactly have a great track record when it came to parenting. And he didn’t want to imagine a child of his own idolizing every hero but Pro Hero, Deku. 


Then there was Ochako, the only one to see through his borderline neurotic behaviors and seek out the function of them. She had a funny way of reading him well and showing that with very few words. 


Pulling up to the house yanked him from his thoughts as they parked in front of the modest-sized home. Two stories with a balcony and a small front yard. It was still close to the city but more peaceful than the central apartment they currently resided in. He took a deep breath and got out to open Ochako’s car door—a habit he refused to drop. 


Ochako maintained conversation with the realtor as they walked up the short driveway to unlock the two-story, newly-built home. His wife stood behind him as he stood in the doorway imagining what their life would look like in this foreign space. 


He wore a look of shock while admiring the home and going on the walkthrough led by their realtor. At some point he interrupted her. “You were right. I was terrified to make something my own, to have a home to lose.” 


Ochako turned to face him with a knowing look in her eye. “You know I like it when you say I’m right.” 


“Yep, and I am going to have to admit it again. Because you were right, everything is more than fine. We don’t need to look anymore,” he said with a soft smile. His eyes widened and he chuckled nervously, “Unless you want to, that is.”


Ochako laughed and waved her hands in front of her. “Nope! No more house stuff. Let’s just go take some pictures and sign our lives away.” 


“I will never understand how you make that sound appealing and say it with a smile,” he teased. The realtor gaped in shock, leading the happy couple out to the front lawn where they would take their first picture out front of their new home.