Thinking back on it, Katsuki doesn’t know when it really started, when everything began to change. Throwing angry words and trading punches had been the norm for him and Deku for years. A scowl, a snarl, an impromptu sparring match. That was how they operated; always had, always would. That was how it was supposed to be. But, somewhere in between graduating from UA and establishing themselves as pro heroes, their normal routine changed. Somewhere along the way, they started trading kisses instead of punches, and sparring matches devolved into sex that further blurred the lines of just what their relationship was. And somewhere along the way their meetings had undeniably become more frequent, more common, more intense, more like lovers. Katsuki wasn’t quite sure when that started either, but somewhere along the way their excuses for seeing each other became flimsier and less substantial; they both refused to acknowledge that they had no excuse at all at this point. Fight, fuck, leave, repeat; it was a cycle that had no clear endgame.
And that’s how Bakugou ended up here; laying on his back, staring up at the slowly circling ceiling fan of Deku’s room, chest heaving, and skin slicked with sweat. And Deku, the damn nerd, laying next to him in a similar state. Katsuki could feel the bruises forming on his hips from where Deku’s hands had gripped with a little too much force, and he was certain that he had more than a few dark hickeys forming along his collarbone and chest. Bakugou knew that the green-haired man’s back was littered with scratches in return. If Bakugou let himself sink too deep into his thoughts, he could almost hear the echoes of their moans and shouts reverberating off the walls back to him. That’s how it always was. Tumultuous, chaotic, intense; there was nothing gentle about their relationship, there never had been. Adulthood has done nothing to change that. The fact that they were each other’s firsts only added another layer of complication to the whole arrangement.
Refusing to acknowledge the feeling of satisfaction settling deep into his bones, Bakugou forced himself upright and began to move to the edge of the bed. He wouldn’t linger after all was said and done; that’s how it always was. Katsuki grabbed his clothes off the floor where they were scattered and redressed without delay. That’s how it always was. And Deku watched from the bed, following Katsuki’s movements with his eyes with a silence that spoke volumes; he never said a word, but the burning desire hidden behind his eyes was loud enough as it was loud enough as it was without giving voice to it. The blond could feel his eyes on his back and ignored the part of his brain that was screaming at him to turn around, to take back off his clothes, and crawl back into the warm bed behind him. But, instead, Katsuki walked to the bedroom door, as always, and straightened his clothes before looking back over his shoulder one more time, looking Deku in the eyes, a firm but softly spoken “goodnight” leaving his kiss-bitten lips before he left the warm atmosphere of the bedroom and the man behind him, before he left the quiet world of the apartment where it was only the two of them. As he walked out of this sanctuary where it seemed reality couldn’t touch them, he firmly closed the lid on the jar of unnamed emotions that he never allowed himself to fully feel for fear of them consuming him completely.
It didn’t matter that the one thing he craved the most but would never let himself have was behind the door he just closed. It didn’t matter how badly Bakugou wanted to turn around and go back to his and Izuku’s quiet little bubble where nothing could touch them. It didn’t matter that they were both pro heroes and had raving fangirls that shamelessly shipped the hero Deku and the hero Ground Zero. It didn’t matter how much Katsuki had changed in the years since they had left UA. Nothing mattered except that he was Bakugou Katsuki and the man on the other side of that door was Midoriya Izuku. Bakugou knew he’d be back. They always found some reason to fight, some reason to fuck out their frustrations, some reason to reconnect in some form of violence. They made each other crazy in the same way that they made each other better people and better heroes.
There was a part of Katsuki that couldn’t help imagining what would happen if, as he walked through the halls of the apartment building and back out to the street, Deku came running back out, telling him to stay, telling him that they’d figure this out. That their relationship didn’t have to be like this, that it didn’t have to be a destructive force in both of their lives. But Katsuki knew that wouldn’t happen, knew that the nerd would always wait for him to make the first move.
Bakugou was brought out of his misery by the sound of panting behind him. Before he could turn around and tell whoever it was to back the fuck off, a solid body barreled into his back and a pair of strong arms wrapped tightly around his waist. Every muscle in his body tensed before he caught sight of the mangled and scarred right hand over his stomach. Every nerve in his body was set aflame, acutely aware of just who was behind him, holding him as if his life depended on it.
“Kacchan.” The nickname was breathed softly against the back of his neck, sending a shiver down his spine. For a moment, Katsuki feared that this wasn’t even real, that his imagination was playing cruel tricks on him and Deku was still back in his apartment, laying in the tangled bedsheets with no intention of seeking Katsuki out. But then the arms squeezed tighter and a warm wetness seeped through the back of his t-shirt.
“Kacchan,…come back upstairs,” Deku whispered into his ear.
There was a moment of hesitation where Bakugou couldn’t decide what he really wanted. He could easily break out of Izuku’s embrace and continue to the door, could walk right out of the apartment building and act like none of this had ever happened. He could go home and spend the rest of the night steeping in the chaos his mind created every time he returned home from one of their nights spent together. He could convince himself that that was what was best for the two of them, that anything more between them would inevitably crumble and destroy their relationship for good.
Katsuki could also turn around, return the fierce embrace and pull Izuku close to his chest with no intention of ever letting him go. He could decide to take a chance, just how he always has with everything else in his life. Katsuki could lean down and press his lips firmly against the green haired man’s in his arms, a silent promise to try and make this work. Instead of letting his self-doubt consume him, he could blow it to smithereens and give the universe the finger. He could let himself have this, this warmth and affection and love that seemed to radiate from the man in his arms.
Katsuki’s decision had already been made before he’d even left the apartment. After all, he’d always been one to go after what he wanted.