Eijirou is jamming in the kitchen when Katsuki gets home. The music is loud enough to make the floors vibrate, and he’s belting out the lyrics as he dances between the stove and the counter. He gives the curry a stir as it bubbles on the stove before shimmying over to the pork, which is frying on the adjacent burner. He nearly trips over himself when he notices Katsuki standing in the doorway, leaning against the frame with a sour look on his face. Eijirou gives him a sheepish grin and hits the button to turn off the music. He knows that Katsuki doesn’t like it when he plays music around the house, and is usually better about making sure to turn it off before he expects Katsuki home. Katsuki remains tense as Eijirou approaches and turns up his chin for a kiss. He can feel Katsuki relax somewhat as Eijirou wraps his arms around his shoulders, stroking his back with gentle fingers.
“How was work?” Eijirou signs after releasing him. Bakugou shrugs.
“Bunch of fucking idiot criminals thought it would be a good idea to try and rob a bank,” he says, his motions sharp and exaggerated. Eijirou sighs, having long ago picked up on the various tones Katsuki expresses with his signs. “Hostage situation and everything.”
“Frustrating?” Eijirou asks. Katsuki scowls, and looks down.
“Almost lost a kid in the crossfire,” he signs. The movements are smaller, almost timid. Then, he looks up and scowls. “Goddamn villains have no decency. You don’t use toddlers as fucking negotiating bits.”
Eijirou nods. “But you taught him, right?”
Bakugou grins. “Damn straight I did. Fucker’s never gonna try crossing the law again.”
“Then a successful day,” Eijirou signs. “Now go sit down, I made curry.”
Katsuki eyes the pot with poorly disguised interest. “Is it hot curry?”
“Extra spicy,” Eijirou confirms.
They share the meal on the couch, Bakugou declaring that he had worked too hard today to sit on the hard kitchen stools. Eijirou can’t complain — he never wants to sit at the counter after he’s been out fighting crime all day either. Eijirou has fun kissing stray smudges of curry from the corners of Katsuki’s mouth until Katsuki decides he’s had enough and pins Eijirou under him on the couch. Eijirou grins; its unusual for Katsuki to initiate contact like this under any circumstances, and surges up to kiss him.
After a thorough makeout session and a quick trip to the kitchen to do the dishes they end up back on the couch, curled around Eijirou’s laptop. Eijirou has music playing quietly on his computer’s speakers, and is doing his best to distract Katsuki from this fact by scrolling through his Facebook feed at breakneck speed. He’s talked to Katsuki about it before, and understands why he gets antsy when Eijirou has music on — some of his favorite memories from childhood involve music, and seeing other people jamming reminds him of what he’s lost. Eijirou also has the sneaking suspicion that Katsuki also feels left out when Eijirou is enjoying something that he can’t, which is hard to blame him for.
Still, Eijirou grew up in a noisy household, full of chatter and laughter and music shared among his large family. To him, a space doesn’t quite feel like home without sound. Of course he loves the home he’s made here with Katsuki, which is certainly noisy when Bakugou decides to wear his aids and talk, but it still feels like something’s missing. He just wishes there was a way to have the best of both worlds.
His thoughts are interrupted by Katsuki elbowing him. Eijirou yelps and stops scrolling. Katsuki points at the screen and says out loud: “I want to watch that.” Eijirou has to pause and process for a moment, still unused to hearing Katsuki talk after all this time, before he understands. He clicks play on the video in the middle of the feed, and lets out a slight “ah” of understanding when he realizes what it is: a video of a woman interpreting a concert in sign language.
Eijirou looks over at Katsuki, and sees that his face is lit up with an uncommon joy. Eijirou can count the number of times he’s seen this expression on Katsuki’s face on one hand, and his mind is made up before the video finishes. He’s going to learn that kind of sign language.
“This is a lot harder than I thought,” Eijirou complains, slumping against the wall of the studio. It's been three weeks since he's seen the video of the concert interpreter, and he feels no closer to achieving his goal than when he started.
“Of course it is,” Present Mic says with a snort. Even though it's been years since graduation, Eijirou has made a concerted effort to keep in contact with their old teachers from UA. Mic had been the only person he could think of to help him with his current project, himself having deaf family members. Mic had been thrilled with the idea of interpreting music into sign for Bakugou, and has been helping him out on his days off. “You’re trying to translate an entire song twice.”
“Once from music into sign,” he says, holding up one finger, “and then from plain sign into a dance.” He holds up a second finger. “But you’re doing really well! You’re really learning how to move!”
“Can we practice to something that isn’t from your radio channel?” Eijirou asks. “I don’t think Katsuki would much appreciate me signing… what even is this?”
Mic gives him a brilliant grin. “Ariana Grande! Nothing like some good American pop music to get the blood flowing.”
“This is Katsuki we’re talking about,” Eijirou says, deadpan. “He probably liked… oh I don’t know, something angsty and angry back when he could still hear.”
Mic frowns. “I guess I could ask Shouta for something,” he says, stroking his mustache thoughtfully. “He has godawful taste in music.”
“Perfect,” Eijirou says with a grin.
Aizawa’s music is, in fact, terrible in the exact way Eijirou would expect Katsuki’s to be, heavy and angry with deep voices and loud guitars. It forces him to move his body in new ways, and Eijirou finally feels like he’s finally starting to get how this works. A few weeks later, Mic brings in his younger brother to observe, and Eijirou is startled when he starts clapping at the end of his performance.
“I think you’ve got it,” he says. He taps his hearing aids with his index fingers. “I got the feel of the song even without these.”
Eijirou accepts an enthusiastic high five from Present Mic, and then a firm hug.
“Thanks,” Eijirou says when Mic releases him.
“No problem! Just be sure to bring Bakugou-kun over for dinner sometime, you know how Shouta gets worried about you kids still.”
Eijirou smiles fondly. “You got it, Sensei. I’ll start warming Katsuki up to the idea.”
Katsuki is home when Eijirou walks in the door, and greets him with a wave from the couch. Eijrou walks to stand in front of him, suddenly nervous.
“Can I turn on some music?” Eijrou signs with timid hands.
Katsuki looks at him sharply. “Fuck no,” Katsuki says out loud, his voice harsh. Eijirou bites his lip.
“Uh, please? There’s something… I wanted to show you.”
Katsuki stares at him for a few moments before nodding. Eijirou goes into the kitchen and syncs his phone to the bluetooth speakers. Taking a deep breath, he taps a song that Katsuki’s mother had said was a favorite of Katsuki’s before he lost his hearing, and walks back into the living room. He dances slightly along with the rhythm before starting to sign along with the lyrics. His movements are stiff at first, and he watches Katsuki warily as he moves. For a few tense seconds, he thinks he’s made a terrible mistake as he takes in Katsuki’s wide eyes and shocked expression. Then, Katsuki’s face lights up with recognition, and he grins. Eijirou feels the tension drain out of his body, and he begins to really get into the music, incorporating the moves he’d practiced with Mic to communicate the way the music made him feel.
The song ends almost too soon, leaving Eijirou standing awkwardly in front of Katsuki, who has stopped smiling.
“Why… why did you learn how to do that?” Katsuki asks after a while.
Eijrou blanches, and signs with hasty hands. “Uh, because I wanted to share something that is important to me with you? And because the look on your face when you saw that video was adorable?” Fuck, he hopes he hasn’t overstepped.
“You’re fucking adorable,” Katsuki groans, and suddenly Eijirou’s arms are full of solid warmth. Katsuki presses a fierce kiss to his mouth, gripping the back of Eijirou’s shirt.
“Thank you,” Katsuki says, burying his face into Eijirou’s shoulder. Eijirou rubs his back with gentle hands, basking in their shared happiness as his music library continues to play in the background. Full of warmth, noise, and joy, Eijirou knows that this place, here with Bakugou, is home.