It's the way Hawks leans against the brick wall that clues Dabi in. Not casually, like he's got nowhere better to be. Not arrogantly, like Dabi is the one that's there for him and not the other way around. He's pressed himself to the wall, shoulder flush against the brick like it's the only thing keeping him from falling over.
"Birdie," Dabi speaks. Hawks' head shoots up, chin leaving his chest and hands unconsciously gripping his arms a bit tighter.
"What?" he asks. Dabi stifles a sigh. The pro hero's eyes are unfocused, narrowing in an attempt to find the scarred man's face in the dim light.
"How long has it been since you've last slept?" It takes a second for the question to register. Hawks blinks twice.
"What does that have to do with anything?" The winged man stares at Dabi with dark circles under his eyes, clearly sleep-deprived. Dabi feels the irrational urge to touch his cheek. Damn heroes.
"You look dead on your feet, feathers," Dabi deadpans. Something close to indignation flits across Hawks' face.
"I'm fine," he argues.
"Tell me what we were talking about."
"We were..." Hawks furrows his eyebrows. "...talking about...something about..." he trails off, nearly mumbling.
Dabi watches him struggle for a while before taking pity on him. He steps forward, gently tugging Hawks away from the wall and looping one arm around his shoulders. Hawks tries to pull away in vain, uttering weak protests under his breath before giving in and letting Dabi support his body.
"Where are we going?" he tries, realizing that there's no point in fighting. Dabi grits his teeth under the sudden weight as he shuffles them both towards the sidewalk.
"My apartment," he says. He doesn't know why the words come out as soft as they do.
At this, Hawks turns his head to look at him. "Your apartment? But..." Dabi meets his amber eyes, silently daring him to continue. Hawks swallows. "M'kay," he mumbles.
Too tired to keep his head lifted any longer, Hawks lets it hang. Dabi's heart is beating faster. (why is it beater faster?) He mentally shakes it off and continues walking in silence.
How did Dabi get here? Where along the road had he taken a wrong (was it though?) turn and ended up in this situation? He's a hardened criminal, a killer who's felt the screams of people burning to ashes and yet...
He looks down at the blond head using his lap as a pillow. At the fingers running through Hawks' feathery soft hair. He almost feels like they aren't his. They can't be. In what world could someone like Dabi be here with someone like Hawks?
Hawks makes a noise in his sleep and Dabi's ears pick up on it like it's the only sound in the world. They are on the shitty mattress in the corner of Dabi's apartment, Dabi sitting up with his back against the wall and Hawks sprawled across his sheets. The pro hero had gone straight for the bed as soon as they'd entered and collapsed, fully clothed. Dabi had made the mistake of trying to get Hawks' jacket off of him, only for the winged man to latch onto his arm like a lifeline. His right wrist is still being held captive.
Dabi slowly lets out a breath. He can't keep doing this. He can't let these invisible chains around his chest grow any tighter. He has to find a way to break the connection between them, a way to crush these damn feelings of fondness under the heel of his boot. He can't keep doing this, because Hawks...
Hawks is a traitor.
He's always known that Hawks is a double agent. From the moment they'd met, it was obvious. Hawks is a hero. Hawks cares about saving people. Hawks only wants information to take down the League. He's always known this, so why...
Why does it hurt so much?
Talons are digging into his chest and wrenching his heart out as Dabi fixes his eyes on the rising and falling of Hawks' breaths. He deserves this pain, he knows that. Dabi is a bad person. He won't deny it. But why did it have to be Hawks to come along and deliver his punishment? It'll hurt much less, he thinks, when he's done all he's needed to do in this world and the time comes to send himself up in flames. That's always been his plan. The only difference is that now, it might be Hawks burning right beside him.
Dabi and Hawks are a car on fire, barreling straight towards an impenetrable wall. Doomed to crash.
He can't look away.