“I SAID HELP ME!” Izuku shrieks, flailing wildly at his keyboard as his friends’ cackles of delight sounded through his headphones. All he could do was watch in horror as his avatar was ruthlessly defeated by the ghastly monster NPC, unable to escape no matter how many times he tried. The game over graphic lights up his screen without remorse, and he gapes at it and the small box in the corner where Ochako is laughing herself out of her chair. “Uravity!” he cried with indignation, “You traitor! Oh my God!”
“Dude, that was - hah! - that was-” Ochako splutters, snorting loudly then covering her mouth.
“You’re horrible at this!” another voice adds with a barking laugh, this time from Dynamight. Izuku’s never seen the guy’s face, but he can still vaguely imagine him cackling in the same vein as his pink-toned best friend.
“Well it’s hard when my teammates betray me!” Izuku protests, snickering himself, “You guys were supposed to have my back when I opened the door!” He screws up his face into a frown, even though his camera wasn’t on. “You knew the monster would be there, didn’t you?”
“Hooh, oh boy,” Ochako squeals, expelling the last of her laughter with an exhale as she slumps back in her chair, “Sorry, I just couldn’t help myself.”
“That was the best idea you’ve ever had, Pink Cheeks,” Dynamight adds with a barely hidden snort, confirming that this entire time he and Ochako had been in cahoots to scare the shit out of Izuku. He knew he shouldn’t have agreed to a horror game with the two of them. He always hated horror.
“I’m never playing with you two again,” Izuku pouts.
“Liar,” Dynamight retorts. Izuku imagines him smirking with that gravelly voice of his and almost makes himself blush. Ugh, he’s gotta stop doing that.
“I’m never playing horror games with you again,” Izuku amends.
“But Mighty!” Ochako whines, “Come on! It’s funny when you get scared about everything!”
One glance at the quickly moving chat at the side of his screen lets Izuku know that most of his stream viewers are of the same sentiment, and he heaves a sigh. “You two are gonna be the death of me, I swear to God. Big bullies.”
“Hey, ‘s not our fault you’re so fucking skittish,” Dynamight teases, “It’s just some ghosts and shit. We’re helping you face your fears.”
“One of these days I’m going to die early of a heart attack and both of you will be guilty,” Izuku huffs. “Just you wait.”
“I’ll be heartbroken on that day, I promise,” Ochako says, laying a hand over her heart, “Here lies Small Might, aka Mighty, the greatest gamer to ever walk the earth.”
“I could look up how to fake cry,” Dynamight adds nonchalantly, “That’s the best I could do, though.”
“Mean,” Izuku whines, “You should be sobbing when I die. Real tears. I deserve it.”
“Oi, the effort to fake tears is more than I’d do for most,” Dynamight protests.
Izuku rolls his eyes, leaning back in his chair and imagining that Dynamight’s in the same room as his instead of somewhere across the country, behind a screen. “Oh, well I guess I’m so very flattered then. The Great Explosion Murder God Dynamight pretending to have emotions just for me!”
“Not like I got actual emotions to show, now do I?”
“Unfortunately you were only programmed for rage, right?” Ochako interjects. Izuku laughs.
“Watch it, Mochi,” Dynamight responds, “I was also programmed with the ability to kick both your asses at any game.”
“My ass?” Izuku and Ochako gasp at the same time. “No way,” Ochako continues, while Izuku points out that he’s currently ahead of Dynamight in their ongoing competition of who can get the most points in their favorite All Might RPG.
“Shut the hell up, you’re barely ahead!” Dynamight protests with vigor, followed by a thud of him probably slamming his fist against his desk, “Those ten points are bullshit! And I will be regaining my honor. I swear to fuck. Watch yourself, Small Might.”
“No, I think I’m just going to keep beating you,” Izuku grins.
“I will destroy you,” Dynamight growls, and Izuku freezes. His entire face flushes bright red, burning with the heat of a thousand suns. He might’ve forgotten to breath because all he can think is wow, Dynamight’s really close to his microphone, isn’t he? and wow, his voice.
“Wha- I- well,” he stutters, desperate for some sensible response that won’t tell on him anymore than his brief silence already has, “no you won’t.”
There’s a pause. Izuku wishes that the earth would swallow him whole and save him the embarrassment of this experience yet again. And then Ochako snickers and deadpans, “Wow, Mighty, great comeback.”
“I’m beating him!” Izuku protests, quickly giving his head an aggressive shake to pull himself back together. Stupid Dynamight and his stupid hot voice, darn it! He’s gotta stop being made speechless by a guy he wouldn’t even be able to recognize on the street.
“Barely!” Dynamight retorts, aggravated again. Izuku almost breaths a sigh of relief, but he’s too busy feeling defensive over his rightly earned place above Dynamight in their competition.
“Oh my god, dorks,” Ochako scoffs, “I’m done. That’s all I can handle of you two for the day. Peace.” She throws up a peace sign at the camera and logs off, ending the stream from her end. Izuku barely registers her quip or her exit, both being common when he and Dynamight started arguing about their scores.
“My extra ten points aren’t bullshit,” Izuku asserts, crossing his arms over his chest, “I’m just better at negotiation than you are.”
“Shut up!” Dynamight retorts, “Negotiation is bullshit.”
“It’s not bullshit just ‘cause you’re bad at it, Dynamight,” Izuku laughs, smiling to himself at his friend’s stubbornness.
“That’s exactly what it is.”
Izuku rolls his eyes. “I’m hanging up on you now.”
“Screw you,” Dynamight says, then logs off the call before Izuku can get a chance.
“I’m winning,” Izuku says to the audience, just to get in the last word, then finally ends his own stream.
It took less than twenty-four hours for Dynamight to message him a screenshot of his new high score, twelve points above Izuku’s.
DYNAMIGHT: BOOM. TAKE THAT FUCKER
SmallMight: ??? you didn’t even stream today??
DYNAMIGHT: didn’t have time
SmallMight: and yet you had time to get 22 points…..
DYNAMIGHT: I always have time to kick ur ass
SmallMight: whatever it won’t last long :P
DYNAMIGHT: forget it loser, I will forever be the number one hero. admit defeat
Izuku can still clearly remember the first time he ever played ALL MIGHT: NUMBER ONE HERO, the role-playing video game where players would take the part of Japan’s greatest superhero, All Might himself. He and his childhood best friend, Kacchan, were both head-over-heels obsessed with the comic book and TV show legend and jumped at the chance to actually be their idol. They used to fight over who got the controller and who had to watch – Kacchan won most of those battles, but Izuku usually wasn’t too upset about watching his friend play and yelling advice at him. He practically worshipped the little blonde kid, to be honest.
The two of them were understandably ecstatic when a hero-themed battle game came out, enthusiastically fighting each other with identical All Might characters – and again, Izuku wasn’t too bothered when Kacchan beat him almost every time.
They only got more and more excited with each new All Might or otherwise superhero-themed game that crossed their paths. Those childhood memories were what started Izuku’s passion for video games that had stuck with him long past the time Kacchan had stopped talking to him and he moved half a country away.
And his nostalgic love for the expansive genre of All Might games that came from that childhood was what made him and Dynamight such fast friends as soon as they crossed paths in the world of video game streamers. It had been Ochako who led Izuku to him, mentioning that she’d found another streamer that seemed, quote, “as obsessive about All Might as you are”. He even had an All Might inspired tag!
Izuku had watched Dynamight stream once, marveled at his skill and knowledge of the game, and immediately reached out to him without a thought towards his admittedly standoffish reputation.
DYNAMIGHT: stay losing then
DYNAMIGHT has logged off
He’s yet to regret that decision.
Izuku smiles and scoffs quietly to himself, closing his messages and returning to his homework. Maybe he can squeeze in time to play before bed tonight, because twelve points is unacceptable.
A mere twelve-point lead is pitiful, but it’s a lead, and it’s all Katsuki has time for between schoolwork and Eijirou hounding him about getting to the gym. His meathead of a best friend won’t take no for an answer. Katsuki logs off to join him as soon as he’s able to rub his admittedly small victory in Mighty’s face.
“Talking to your boyfriend?” Eijirou asks, leaning up against the doorframe to their shared bedroom and somehow managing to sound genuine. Katsuki flips him off before slipping his phone into his pocket and grabbing his bag. “Hey, rude!”
“Shut up,” Katsuki snipes, moving past his friend and towards the front door of their dorm room. Ei, either messing with him or really too stupid to understand that Mighty barely counts as a friend regardless of whether Katsuki’s got a crush on him or not (which he, regrettably, might), follows him with hurt puppy-dog eyes.
“Come on, Katsuki, you always do this!” he whines.
“Do what,” Katsuki responds flatly, locking the door behind them and heading down the hall.
“You never tell me anything about your other friends!” Eijirou says, “I mean, look at me! My best friend’s grinning at his phone like an idiot and I- OW!” Katsuki elbows him in the ribs, scowling.
“Like a what?”
“And I don’t even know the person he’s talking to!” Eijirou continues like nothing happened, throwing his hands in the air as Katsuki shoves the door open and keeps leading them both towards the on-campus gym.
“The more you whine the less I wanna say,” Katsuki responds, like he has a thousand times when Eijirou’s complained about not being able to assault Katsuki’s online acquaintances with offers of friendship and heaps of embarrassing stories he keeps in his rock-hard skull. “And I ain’t grinning like a fucking idiot about a guy. Any guy.” Sure, Mighty inexplicably has attractive qualities, but it’s not like Katsuki’s fawning over him.
“Well we both know that’s not true,” Eijirou mutters, earning himself another whack. He jolts his hands up to cover himself from more attacks as he laughs. “Bro, I’m just saying! The truth is out there.” He starts counting off on his hand. “There was Shinsou, then the exchange student – though of course your grins were more ‘feral attack-dog’ back then – oh, and can’t forget literal All Might-”
“SHUT UP!” Katsuki yells, swinging his gym bag towards Eijoru’s crotch. His friend manages to dodge with an infuriating laugh. This is exactly why he can never let Eijirou and Mighty cross paths – this, and any number of the facts that Eijirou could let something slip about Katsuki’s unsavory personality that he’s surprised hasn’t scared Mighty off already. “Fucker. I’m not going to spot you,” he threatens, “or make dinner tonight.”
“No, don’t do that!” Eijirou gasps, clasping his hands together in contrition, “I’m sorry, I take it all back, please make me ramen, I’ll never insult your taste in men again.”
“You were insulting it?!”
Luckily for Eijirou, Katsuki doesn’t want to go to jail, or else he’d be six feet underground instead of writing an essay at the kitchen counter as Katsuki finishes making ramen for the both of them. It’s a normal situation for the two of them, as doubling the amount of food he made was hardly a burden on Katsuki and Eijirou is perfectly happy to clean up almost every night instead of eating solely toaster waffles and instant noodles for all his college years.
Eijirou only looks up from his computer when Katsuki drops a bowl next to him on the counter without fanfare. His face lights up and he quickly grabs his chopsticks, nodding at Katsuki. “Thanks dude!” Katsuki grunts in response and starts to leave, but Eijirou stops him. “Wait, I just remembered something.”
“I just saw…” Eijirou starts, scooping a heap of hot noodles into his mouth, “fumfing abfo-”
“Eijirou, I swear to god,” Katsuki interrupts, glaring at this oaf that never seems to think when food is around, especially after a workout.
Eijirou swallows and gives Katsuki a thumbs up, “That’s really good dude. Anyways, I saw something about a video game con in Tokyo next month. Are you going?”
Katsuki frowns, remembering the unanswered email in his inbox from the organizers of the exact convention Eijirou is talking about. They want him to be one of the creators they always have come, because apparently almost three million followers on his Twitch channel will get him that kind of unwanted attention. All he can imagine is random people getting into his business and bothering him at every turn, which is absolute hell. “No,” he answers, “Why the hell would I want to do that?”
Eijirou looks at him like he’s the most unbelievable person on the Earth. “For real? Dude, you know you could be like, famous if you just showed your beautiful little face for once.”
“Which is exactly why I’m never going to do it,” Katsuki responds, scooping up some his own noodles because he’s getting impatient. He’d been hoping to get in some more points over Mighty after his homework.
Eijirou huffs, shaking his head like an incredulous mother. “Never could I imagine hating people so much.”
“It’s the rocks in your brains.”
“But still!” Eijirou continues without acknowledging Katsuki’s quip, “You don’t have to go as Dynamight, you could just go as Katsuki. We could go together! It’d be fun!”
Katsuki narrows his eyes at Eijirou, suspicious at the amount of energy he’s putting into selling this convention. “Why do you want to go in the first place?”
“Because we’d have fun!”
“Because they have Crimson Riot merch there,” Eijirou tries. It was more believable, but Ei had always been a terrible liar. Katsuki keeps waiting, one eyebrow quirked up, and Eijirou deflates. “Uravity’s a featured guest.”
“I fucking knew it.”
“Katsuki, please. Maybe I just want to get you out the house for once. Maybe I just want to meet your other friends there!” Eijirou frowns, creasing his brow and giving Katsuki that worried look that used to make him see red until he realized that other people’s genuine care for him is not always a negative judge of his character. “Seriously, dude, why are so against me talking to them? You embarrassed of me or something?”
The hidden tinge of real hurt in his voice smooths Katsuki’s bristles, and he sighs and sets his bowl of ramen down on the counter. “No, obviously not.”
“Because you knew me in high school, they didn’t,” Katsuki answers, doing his best to look Eijirou in the eye and not slam his head into the table.
“Katsuki…” Eijirou starts.
“I know,” Katsuki interrupts, “I’m not that same person I was back then, people change, yada yada yada.” Eijirou frowns at him, and Katsuki grabs his bowl and starts for the bedroom.
“Never mind,” Katsuki calls back, closing the door behind him before Eijirou can say anything else. He sets his ramen on his desk and slumps into his chair, glaring at his black computer screen.
He huffs, running a hand over his face with exasperation. Yes, he knows. He knows he’s been to therapy and worked on anger management and vulnerability, he knows he’s not the same little shithead he used to be, he knows, but all of that just seems to add to his anxiety. Because as much time as he spends playing battle royale games with Uravity or destroying his strict sleeping schedule by staying on call with Mighty until two am, he doubts either of them would ever speak to him again if they knew all the shitty things he used to do and say.
He’s hinted at it, sure, because you can’t spend as much time talking to someone as he does with Mighty without sharing at least a little bit of personal history like that, but he’s never gone into detail.
It certainly doesn’t help that Mighty reminds him of Deku.
God, no, that does not help. Here he is, talking to some guy he’s never even seen the face of, all while thinking about that green-haired kid that seemed a permanent fixture in every good childhood memory he has. The one he hasn’t seen or heard from since middle school, whom with his last conversation with contained a multitude of things he wished he never said.
He’d told his best fucking friend that he hated him, made him cry, and then never saw him again.
Yeah, so far, therapy hadn’t been able to crack through that guilt or even make a dent in it. It might’ve helped if Katsuki could find the guy and apologize to him for it, but he has no idea where Deku is or how to contact him. He hadn’t even realized he moved away permanently until his third unexplained absence from school. By that point, it was too late, and he’d figured Deku would rather not hear from him. Besides, back then, apologizing was not something he did. Little shithead.
Katsuki groans into his hand, dropping his head onto his desk with a thunk. He’s a fucking disaster. And an idiot. It’s not like Eijirou would walk up to Uravity and immediately list off all of Katsuki’s most fucked-up qualities. It’s not like someone like Eijirou would even have a list of Katsuki’s most fucked up qualities. It’s just…strange, for him to imagine his real life and his online life overlapping. Maybe it’d be good for him. He does get the sense that Mighty and Eijirou would hit it off if they ever met, though that might not be the best situation for Katsuki.
Just then, Katsuki’s computer screen lights up with a notification from Mighty himself. Katsuki scrambles into an upright position in his seat, fighting a smile even though he’d been feeling like shit just moments before. That’s something that Mighty and Deku had in common.
Katsuki logged on to his computer and opened the message.
SmallMight: OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD
DYNAMIGHT: you good?
SmallMight: GUES HWAT
SmallMight: GUESE FUCKJRNG WHAT
SmallMight: I JYSTR HIT THREE KILLION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
SmallMight: IM CGONONA COMBYST THIS SI TSO COOL
Katsuki quickly opens another tab to find that Twitch user SmallMight had just, in fact, reached three million followers. God damn. Another grin fights its way to his lips.
DYNAMIGHT: damn congrats
He stared at the screen for a moment.
SmallMight: S;ALDKFSL;’SDFKDF KS; FGK;SDSKGJDLK;GS;FDLKF;S
SmallMight: THSNK YOU!!!!!!!!!
SmallMight: GONNE BE HONEST THO IM SCARED
DYNAMIGHT: why tf
SmallMight: BC THATS. SO MAMNY PEOPLE
DYNAMIGHT: it’s hardly more than the 2.9 million it was yesterday
SmallMight: BUT IT IS THOUGH????/??
Katsuki snorts, running a hand through his hair and marveling at the strangeness in front of him. How could one guy be so god damned endearing while being so god damned dumb.
DYNAMIGHT: whatever you say, dummy
SmallMight: meanie >:( I am having a Moment okay!!!! this is a lot!!!!! AAAAAAAAA
DYNAMIGHT: deep breaths
SmallMight: NO ICANNOT BREAHTE IM A CELBERUTY NOW
DYNAMIGHT: I’m sorry what
SmallMight: LISTEN. LISTEN,
SmallMight: SOMEONE RECOGNIZED MY VOICE ON THE STREET YESTERDAY
SmallMight: its only a matter of time before the paparazzies get to me
SmallMight: u wouldn’t understand true fame dy
DYNAMIGHT: excuse you?? stfu
SmallMight: imagine only having 2.9 mil… sigh I miss those days
SmallMight: I could actually leave my house. live my life!!
DYNAMIGHT: oh my GOD
SmallMight: now im burdened by fame 😔
DYNAMIGHT: I fucking hate you ITS NOT THAT DIFFERENT
SmallMight: just don’t take it for granted okay!!!! you’ll understand someday….
DYNAMIGHT: youre done. youre DONE. jfc
SmallMight: OH MY GOD I just remembered that I promised to do a face reveal. insert panic
Katsuki freezes at his keyboard, thinking back to that one stream of Mighty’s when he was still hundreds of thousands of followers away from three million. He had promised a face reveal if he ever did reach the milestone, and Katsuki had spent a good while thinking about it, but he hadn’t expected it to come so fast. He isn’t sure how to feel now that it’s actually going to happen.
SmallMight: actually I didn’t remember but my followers sure did my dms are exploding I haven’t even posted anything yet
SmallMight: why did I think this was ever a good idea???????? I’m gonna have to. post my face. uh oh
DYNAMIGHT: no going back on it now
SmallMight: I guess I have to do it good luck surviving my beautiful face
DYNAMIGHT: that bad huh
SmallMight: HEY. RUDE. I am GORGEOUS you will see
DYNAMIGHT: looking forward to it
DYNAMIGHT: more to make fun of
Izuku had screamed into his pillow for a good minute before he’d messaged Dynamight, and here he is doing it again because he seriously has three million followers that’s insane three MILLION people want to watch him play video games what the hell. He jumps around his room and pumps his fist wildly, trying to release all the excited energy in his body while also not bothering his roommate right outside his door with too much noise. He doesn’t succeed, however, because Todoroki knocks on the door and he still can’t stop shaking.
“Is everything alright?” Todoroki asks as soon as Izuku opens the door.
“Yeah,” Izuku manages, voice cracking and grin plastered to his face. Todoroki blinks at him in slight confusion.
“I JUST HIT THREE MILLION FOLLOWERS!” Izuku practically screams, jumping up and down.
“Oh,” Todoroki says, nodding, “Congratulations, Midoriya.”
“Thank you!” Izuku squeals, darting forward to squeeze his roommate in a tight hug. He releases him quickly, leaving Todoroki stiff and somewhat wide-eyed in his doorway. Izuku’s too busy rambling to really notice, and its normal behavior for Todoroki anyways. “It was so crazy! I almost didn’t notice! I think I’m gonna make katsudon – do you want Katsudon, Todoroki? I’ll make some for you. As a celebratory dinner! Three million is such a big number. Way more than a thousand, and even a thousand is a lot. You couldn’t fit that many people in a room I don’t think. Do you think you could build a room that big? I don’t think you – Oh my god, I said I’d show them my face. I only said that because I thought it’d never happen! Now what? I gotta show my face! Oh man, that’s no good, I’m so self-conscious of my looks, this is a terrible-”
“But you’re handsome,” Todoroki interrupts, making Izuku freeze in the middle of the kitchen with his hands still over his face, peeking through his fingers at his friend. Todoroki just stares back, head tilted a little to the side.
“What,” Izuku says, cheeks blooming red.
“You’re handsome,” Todoroki repeats in his unique, slightly confused tone, “Most people would agree. I don’t see why you are nervous.”
“Ah hah,” Izuku squeaks, keeping his hands over his pink cheeks.
“I’m sure Dynamight would agree.”
Izuku’s eyes blow wide and he chokes on his own voice, “Excuse me?”
A hint of a smirk plays at Todoroki’s deadpan face, “Is that not who you worry most about?”
Izuku drops his hands to his sides, incredulous, “Oh my God, you are the worst. What has Ochako been telling you?!”
“Is she wrong?” Todoroki retorts, avoiding the question.
“She- I- you know what?” Izuku starts, trying to defend himself but unable to when he knows full well that Dynamight’s rough voice made an appearance in his dreams last night, attached to a murky imagination of what adult Kacchan might look like because one inexplicable reminded of the other, “I’m going to make myself dinner now.”
“Can I have some too?”
When Izuku told Ochako his big news over the phone, she started screaming, and Izuku remembered why she held the title of his best friend for all these years. Her excitement was palpable despite her being at her house multiple miles away, probably scaring the shit out of her poor parents.
“I’M SO HAPPY FOR YOU IZUKU!!”
“Thanks,” Izuku grins, keeping the phone a good distance from his ear until she calms down, while he lays back on his bed.
“AAH! So cool. You deserve it.”
“Aw, that’s sweet.”
“It’s true!” Ochako asserts. Izuku can imagine her shoving her finger into his chest in her aggressively affirming way. “In fact, you deserve even more, because you’re funny and smart and awesome and a lot of other things, but it’ll happen! It’ll happen.”
“Okay, I get it, you can stop now,” Izuku laughs, face warm. He’s never going to be very good at taking compliments.
“I’m just so proud of you,” Ochako responds, suddenly sounding teary. She even sniffled loudly to add to the effect. “So proud. My little baby, all grown up.” Izuku snorts. “So! Are you going to do anything to celebrate? I mean, obviously I’m going to throw a party for you, but like in terms of a stream.”
“Wait, Ochako, a party isn’t-”
“I’m throwing you one.”
“But that’s so much work-”
“I’m doing it.”
“Izuku!” There’s a warning tone in her voice.
Izuku sighs. “Fine, fine. Just don’t spend a lot of money or anything.”
“Won’t be a problem, I don’t have any,” Ochako answers, “So? Celebration stream?”
“Well,” Izuku starts, “I actually did promise my followers that I’d do a face reveal at 3 million…” Ochako makes a noise of interest. “And based on my DMs they all remember that promise.”
“Ooooooh yes,” Ochako says, “Finally, the world can see your adorable little face!”
“Not you too,” Izuku mutters to himself, covering his face with his free hand.
“I can’t wait to see how Dy-”
“I swear to god if you say anything about Dynamight,” Izuku interrupts, making Ochako cackle.
“But Izuku, come on!”
“Are you the one bringing Todoroki in on all this?” Izuku accuses.
“Uh, yeah!” Ochako answers without shame, “Dude, you can’t expect me to sit through all your romantic tension and not vent about it.”
“There’s no tension!” Izuku exclaims, ear burning, “Romantic or otherwise!”
“Sure,” Ochako deadpans, “Keep telling yourself that, Izuku. You know, I bet you told him about this before you told me.”
Izuku opens his mouth to defend himself, but he can’t. She’s right. He doesn’t know how, but she is. For whatever reason, there hadn’t seemed to have been any other option of who to go to with his good news the moment he got it. He’d messaged Dynamight without a second thought. “Wh-I- okay, well. It’s irrelevant.” Ochako laughs again. “He’s my friend, I can tell him stuff!”
“Mm hm, mm hm,” Ochako hums, “Really great friendship. Love it.”
“I am so tired of the constant slander.”
“Too bad, you lovable dork, you’re the dumbest smart person I know.”
“You give me whiplash sometimes.”
“Anyways, back to your face reveal,” Ochako says, “I’m so excited for that. When are you gonna do it?”
Izuku exhales in defeat. “As soon as possible, probably. Get it over with.”
“God, I can’t wait!” Ochako responds, cackling somewhat maniacally, “You already have so many simps and soon you will have an army of them!”
“I don’t- there’s not-” Izuku stutters, then stops with a sigh. “Sometimes I think that girlfriend of yours is corrupting you.”
“Woah, hey there!” Ochako exclaims, feigning offence, “Just because you don’t have a hot vampire girlfriend doesn’t mean you get to bash mine, Izuku. Have some class, she’s the love of my life.”
“Is she actually a vampire? Because I wouldn’t be surprised,” Izuku muses, thinking about all the toothy grins Ochako’s partner, Toga, had given him over the years. Everyone had been scared of her back in high school, and probably still would be now if it weren’t for the fact that she was dating Ochako, and Ochako would most likely never let her girlfriend murder someone.
“That’s a secret I’ll never tell,” Ochako says, “What I do know is that she’s the most interesting person I’ve ever met, and I love her.” Izuku rolls his eyes. There’s some noise on the other end of the call, and Ochako shouts something indecipherable, probably to her parents. “Oops, I gotta go,” she says to Izuku.
“Let me know when you’re going to stream, I wanna watch,” she adds.
“I’ll probably post about it soon,” Izuku answers.
“Cool, I’ll look out for it. Love you, bye!”
She hangs up, and Izuku sits up in his bed and opens his Twitter. Ignoring the many, many unopened DMs, he composes a new tweet:
thank you all so much for 3mil!!! I appreciate u all sm, thank you thank you thank you 🙏💚 face reveal tomorrow (I didn’t forget!!)
He posts it before he can chicken out, and immediately shuts his phone off. Withing twenty-four hours of now, he will have shown his face to the world. To Dynamight. Which is fine. It’s fine. Totally and completely fine.
He tells himself that all through the night and following day, all the way up until he’s sitting in his desk chair, cursor hovering over the button to start his stream. His nerves are buzzing wildly, hands shaking, so he resorts to a few breathing techniques his high school therapist taught him to overcome anxiety. This is fine. He does genuinely want to do this. It’ll be fun. Making himself a little mini celebrity. Fun!
He smiles a bit, heart slowing. Yeah, this’ll be fun. Maybe he’ll even get to see Dynamight’s face after showing his own.
Izuku knows he doesn’t really need to see Dynamight’ face, that they can be great friends nonetheless, but at the same time, he wants to. The two of them have already had conversations longer and deeper than conversations he’d had with anyone else, all while on a simple voice call at twelve in the morning. He knows quite a lot about the guy he knows barely anything about.
Though, if he ever did see Dynamight’s face, he’d have to crush the impossible hope that Dynamight really was secretly Kacchan, his previous close friend/childhood crush, for good. It was unfair of him to do that anyways, so it would be for the best, but still.
Izuku shook his head, bringing his focus back to the present moment and his impending life-changing event (okay, it’s not really that big of a deal, but let him have his moment).
He starts his stream.
Katsuki will never admit it, but he jumps when the notification that Mighty has started streaming pops up on his screen, and he clicks on it faster than he’s clicked on anything. For some stupid reason, the prospect of finally seeing what this man looks like is giving him butterflies. Wait, no, not butterflies. Just…nerves, or whatever. They’re annoying either way.
“Hey!” Mighty’s voice comes through his speakers with a slight shake of nervousness. The screen is still black. The chat starts filling up with excited fans and congratulations. “Hey all! How’s everyone’s afternoon?”
Katsuki’s knee won’t stop bouncing as he listens to Mighty go on and on about how grateful he is to all his supporters and how he never saw this happening to him. He’s such a dork that Katsuki can’t help but grin, shaking his head at his friend’s antics. Mighty never can seem to stop rambling. And Katsuki knows a lot of his story by now, about how he started streaming in high school in an attempt to gain some confidence and find a community of like-minded people, away from the bullies of his early school days. Hearing that, Katsuki had practically begged to hear a mid-puberty Mighty talking about All Might, thinking of all the glorious voice cracks he could make fun of, but he’d stopped as soon as Mighty had turned the request back on him.
“Okay, okay, I see in the chat that people are getting impatient with my rambling, I get it,” Mighty says, a smile tinging his voice in a stupidly attractive way that only he seems to manage. Katsuki nearly thumps himself in the head. How’s he supposed to cope with this man’s face when he can barely hear his voice without thinking it’s hot. He needs to pull himself together. “I guess it’s finally time for me to turn my camera on,” Mighty continues, then pauses for a drawn out second, “Unless there’s…any more questions people want me to answer…”
Katsuki knows he’s stalling, and everyone in the chat does too. They encourage him to go through with it, with a few people suggesting that he answer more questions with the camera on instead.
“Fiiiine, fine, fine,” Mighty surrenders, “Let me just…” There’s a few clicking noises. Katsuki fidgets with one of his rings, waiting in a very causal and calm way. “Okay,” Mighty says, “Three, two, one!”
The camera turns on. Katsuki’s heart stops.
Staring back at him from his computer screen, with a dorky, nervous grin and messy green hair he would’ve recognized from a mile away, is Deku.
WHAT THE FUCK?
Sure, he’s changed. His curly hair is a little longer, a little darker, his face a bit sharper and less like the round, apple-cheeked kid he used to be, his shoulders much broader and his voice obviously deeper. But he’s still got those stupid ass freckles splattered everywhere across his face, and those bright green eyes that squint when he smiles. He’s still Deku. Izuku. All grown up and still the nerd he used to be.
Of course Mighty always reminded Katsuki of Deku. Of course he had such familiar mannerisms. THEY WERE THE SAME FUCKING PERSON!
“Ta-da!” Deku/Mighty laughs nervously, and suddenly Katsuki can’t comprehend how he didn’t assign the voice to his childhood friend before. It’s so characteristically Deku. He’s a fucking idiot. Dear god. “It’s me,” Deku continues, flattening his hands under his chin with that dumbass smile. The camera frame allows a view of his upper arms when he does this, leading to the conclusion that Deku is certainly not the scrawny, skinny little kid he used to be.
You’ve gotta be fucking kidding.
Yeah, what’s worse than the fact that Katsuki has been unknowingly talking to his tragic childhood best friend this whole time, is that his tragic childhood best friend is hot now. He had been right about Mighty, in the worst possible way.
“Oh, wow, guys…that’s- you’re,” Deku stammers with another stupidly attractive laugh, reading through the innumerable compliments spamming the chat, “you’re so nice, thank you. Oh – hi Ochako.” His face is quickly flushing red, just like it used to.
Katsuki’s having a fucking crisis.
After years of agonizing over the way things ended with Deku, he finally has the actual chance to talk to him again. To say he’s sorry. Ask how Auntie Inko’s doing. Ask him when the fuck he started being hot. So many things. All he’d have to do was…tell Deku who he is.
Shit. How should he start? Hi, remember that one kid you used to know who told you he hated you? Well that’s me, and I think you’re cute now, please don’t hate me. Deku would never go for that.
Actually, Katsuki thinks with a heavy sigh, he probably would. If there was one thing Deku was, it was forgiving. That’s why they made a good pair; because Deku was nice enough for two and Katsuki could hold enough grudges for three. There’s a good chance the nerd is the same way now.
Katsuki stares at Deku on his screen, watching him stammer out ‘thank you’s to his viewers and ramble on about certain posters on the wall of his room behind him, and slammed his head forward onto his desk.
Izuku finally manages to stop the stream, letting out a breath of relief and sinking deep into his chair, almost sliding to the floor. “Oh my god,” he breathes aloud, clutching his fist over his racing heart, “I did it. Oh my god.”
His notifications buzz, and he almost expects it to be Dynamight – saying what he had no idea – but it’s Ochako. He smiles.
Uravity: IZUKU BBY IM SO PROUD OF U
Uravity: PRETTY BOY <3
Uravity: UR GONNA HAVE SO MANY SIMPS
SmallMight: thank you but enough about the simps please I don’t need any
Uravity: ohohohoh but you will have them
SmallMight: okay I get it
Uravity: ANYWAYS I forgot to ask you yesterday but! remember how I got invited to that con a bit ago?
Uravity: I think you should come with me!! :D
SmallMight: aren’t I already?
Izuku isn’t going to miss out on a chance for more official All Might merchandise – some of that stuff only gets sold at cons!
Uravity: I mean as smallmight, not just some guy
Uravity: I can email the runners and get them to list you as a feature again even though you turned it down before
Izuku had, in fact, turned down StreamCon’s invitation to be a featured creator at their con, because it had seemed like a lot of pressure and attention. Besides, at the time none of his followers had known what he looked like, and he hadn’t really been planning on changing that.
SmallMight: LIKE PEOPLE WOULD COME TO MEET ME???
Uravity: zuku people are gonna recognize you anyways now might as well get PAID
Izuku stares at the screen, feeling like an idiot.
SmallMight: oh yeah.
Uravity: lmao I assume ur in then?
SmallMight: do I have another choice??
Uravity: bills to pay my friend!! lemme email them I’ll get you ur money
Uravity has logged off
Izuku takes a deep breath, rubbing his temples and trying to wrap his head around the idea of going to a con and getting legitimately recognized. A featured creator. That used to be a spot reserved for people like Horikoshi Kohei, the creator of freaking All Might, not Izuku.
He glances at Dynamight’s icon on his screen, noticing the green dot at the bottom that marks him active, and gets a shaky idea. He opens the chat.
SmallMight: hey!! I have a query
It takes a bit longer than expected for Dynamight to replay, and Izuku waits nervously, but eventually the message comes.
DYNAMIGHT: who tf calls it a ‘query’
SmallMight: smart people. anyways
SmallMight: are you going to StreamCon?
DYNAMIGHT: wasn’t planning on it, why?
SmallMight: well I’m going with uravity
SmallMight: she’s trying to get them to make me a featured creator which is a whole other thing but
SmallMight: uh. I was thinking that if you went we could meet. maybe
Dynamight doesn’t answer. For a very long time, Dynamight doesn’t answer. Izuku starts to think that this was a terrible idea. A really no good terrible horrible very bad idea. What was he thinking? Why, after over a year of knowing each other through voice and nothing more, would Dynamight want to meet with him in real life. They didn’t even know each other’s names! He’d only seen Izuku’s face two minutes ago! Izuku still hadn’t seen his face! What was he-
Stay calm, Izuku! Calm!!
SmallMight: oh! cool! very cool
DYNAMIGHT: my friend was bothering me about going anyways
DYNAMIGHT: but I will NOT be going as Dynamight, so no fucking outing me
SmallMight: of course of course no problemo
DYNAMIGHT: I gotta go
SmallMight: oh okay! later!!
DYNAMIGHT: cute freckles btw
DYNAMIGHT has logged off
Izuku stifled a scream.
“Oi, Eijirou!” Katsuki shouts across the dorm.
“Yeah?” Eijirou shouts back from the couch where he’s watching TV.
“You owe me 150 dollars, these con tickets are expensive as shit!”
Katsuki doesn’t answer, and it doesn’t take his roommate long to appear in the doorway with wide eyes.
“We’re going to StreamCon?” he exclaims.
“Isn’t that what you wanted?” Katsuki responds, barely glancing away from his computer.
“Well, yeah, but what changed your mind?” Eijirou asks, trying to peek at Katsuki’s screen but only seeing the con site. Katsuki feels his ears start to burn and he purses his lips in annoyance.
“Nothing, I just did,” he answers.
Eijirou is quiet for a moment, then raises his eyebrows, “Is Mighty going-”
“Shut up,” Katsuki snaps, flipping him off.
“OH MY GOD I KNEW IT!” Eijirou shouts, grinning, “He did his face reveal didn’t he? He’s hot. He’s gotta be hot. You’ve got a crush-”
Katsuki rolls his chair across the room and slams the door in Eijirou’s face.
“I knew it!” comes the muffled shout, followed by laughter. Katsuki buries his burning face in his hands.
“150!” he calls back, dragging his hand down his face and rolling back to his desk.
“Anything for young love!” Eijirou responds, cackling some more but thankfully not trying to come back in the room else Katsuki would have to strangle him. Fucking dumbass.
He almost wishes he could go without Eijirou, but he knew that wouldn’t be fair to his friend, especially after their conversation the other day. It’s just going to be difficult to manage annoying crowds, his loudass friend, and an attempted surprise reunion/apology with Midoriya Izuku, of all people. It probably wouldn’t be the best setting for such an encounter, but he just can’t imagine doing it anywhere but in person.
Besides, if he’s being honest with himself, he really fucking misses Deku, and he really fucking wants to see the stupid look on his face when he realizes who Dynamight really is. As long as he doesn’t run away, it should all be good. Yep!
“Woah, he is cute!” Eijirou shouts from outside the door. “I get it now!”
It’ll be all good.
The next few weeks pass far faster than Katsuki realized, and suddenly it was the day of the convention and he felt no more prepared than he had on the day he agreed to this. Eijirou had ended up getting very excited about the prospect of surprising Deku, despite not knowing anything about his history, because every time Katsuki tried to tell him he…decided against it. Not chickening out, just deciding that he didn’t want to deal with all of Eijirou’s questions. His past was his own, he could tell his friend whatever he wanted.
Regardless, Eijirou was even more excited about Katsuki about the whole thing, even calling his girlfriend and Katsuki’s friend Mina and forcing Katsuki to listen to her spout nonsense romantic advice for a good twenty minutes while he tried to get dressed before they left.
“You’re getting dressed right now?” Mina exclaimed when Katsuki complained about it, her voice loud and bubbly against the background noise of the train she was on, “Make sure you wear something hot!”
“Ex-fucking-cuse you?” Katsuki snapped, offended that she’d even question his fashion choices, “I’m not in first damn year, Mina, I know how to dress.”
“Don’t remind me,” Mina says, “I can still remember the first day you tied your tie right. I was so proud.”
“Fuck off,” Katsuki grumbles, grabbing his third t-shirt attempt out of his dresser and holding it up to assess. It’s his old black skull t-shirt, something his mom had gotten him as a joke because it was the exact same as his favorite shirt as a kid. Something Deku would maybe recognize.
“I don’t understand why you have to go through so many shirts,” Eijirou interjects from his seat on his bed, “It’s just clothes, right?”
“Explains why you’re dressed like that,” Katsuki retorts at the same time Mina makes a sympathetic oh, honey noise at her boyfriend.
“Rude,” Eijirou grumbles, slumping backwards. Katsuki slips the skull shirt over his head, ruffles his hair back into place, and shuts his dresser.
“Alright, we’re leaving now. Bye, Mina.”
“Wait!” Mina yelps, “Ei, what’s he wearing?!”
“Uh,” Eijirou says, standing up and assessing Katsuki’s outfit, “Black.”
“Oh my god, don’t tell me he’s back to the Hot Topic employee stuff,” Mina bemoans as Katsuki gives Eijirou a look, halfway between a glare and incredulous. Eijirou just shrugs. “Katsuki, please, just keep your hair off your face and we can avoid going full 2000s emo-”
“Good bye,” Katsuki interrupts, swiping Eijirou’s phone off the dresser and hanging up.
“Wait, dude!” Eijirou whines, grabbing his phone back and pouting at it, “I needed to say I love you! I’m gonna call her back.”
“Oh my godddd!” Katsuki groans.
After what felt like an eternity later, Katsuki finally parks outside the convention center and heads inside, hands shoved deep inside his jeans pockets as he fidgets with his rings. The center is full to the brim with nerds of all kinds, some in detailed cosplays that even manage to impress Katsuki and his specific knowledge of video game character design. Eijirou spots a Crimson Riot cosplayer and immediately freaks out, forcing Katsuki to take hundred of pictures and gushing enough to make this random person’s day. After that’s over with, he decides it’s high time to message Deku, letting him know that they’re here.
DYNAMIGHT: here with my friend
SmallMight: yay!!! im in the featured creator section (obviously) but I get a break in about half an hour for lunch. we can meet in the ‘backstage’ area so people don’t recognize you :)
SmallMight: I’ll let the security people know you’re coming
SmallMight: ps can you believe they have security here???? I feel famous this is very weird
SmallMight: someone asked me to sign their ARM. like what
SmallMight: wait what should I tell the security people to look out for
DYNAMIGHT: someone blonde dragging around a (fake) redhead
SmallMight: hmmm so are you blonde or a fake redhead
DYNAMIGHT: I’m a real fucking blonde, bitch
SmallMight: I wasn’t doubting you!!
SmallMight: see you soon :D
“So,” Eijirou says suddenly over his should, making Katsuki jump.
“Dude!” he yells, elbowing a laughing Eijirou in the ribs.
“Sorry!” Eijirou snickers, “I was just wondering what was up!”
“We’re gonna meet him in the back in half an hour,” Katsuki answers, slipping his phone in his back pocket.
“Ooh, fancy, the back,” Eijirou says, grinning, “Your man’s getting us the celebrity treatment.”
“Shut the fuck up, I swear to God.”
“Holy crap there’s another Crimson Riot.”
Katsuki spends the next thirty minutes wandering around the convention, letting Eijirou strike up conversations with strangers while he browses All Might merchandise and avoids talking to much in case his voice is recognized. He ends up buying a limited-edition baseball cap with the bright yellow All Might V embroidered to the front and a Mirko keychain before it’s time to go meet Deku. He clips the keychain of his second-favorite superhero to his belt loop and puts the cap on after proving to the random security guards that his hair is, in fact, blonde. It isn’t too necessary, though, because apparently one of them has a kid who watches his streams and recognizes his voice.
Eijirou gives him excited grins as they’re led down a short hall into the room where Deku and Uravity and who knows who else are waiting for them, while Katsuki’s busy trying to convince himself that this isn’t a terrible mistake. It’ll be fine. He’ll just have to get Deku somewhere private to talk to him. It’ll be fine.
“Hey, is that Dynamight?” a voice calls, and Katsuki jolts back to reality to find that he’s reached the room. And there Deku is, lounging on a couch next to Uravity, who’s grinning at Katsuki with amusement.
Izuku, however, is staring at him wide green eyes and a slightly open mouth, completely and totally frozen.
“It sure is!” Eijirou answers proudly.
“Hey, is that Dynamight?” Ochako exclaims, turning her head at the entrance of two people Izuku almost hadn’t noticed. His heart rate skyrockets, and he can hardly turn his head fast enough.
He meets a pair of fiery red eyes, and his heart just stops.
Staring back at him is a grown man that looks exactly like his childhood best friend. Soft, spiky ash blonde hair, sharp features, breathtaking red eyes. The man even stands like Kacchan, shoulders back, chin up in permanent confidence. For fuck’s sake, the man was even wearing Kacchan’s favorite shirt! Just…a much larger version.
And holy fucking shit, older Kacchan is even hotter than Izuku remembered him being.
“It sure is!” the redhead next to – Kacchan? Dynamight?? Izuku isn’t sure what to believe now – says, grinning proudly. Izuku blinks a few times in quick succession, looking between the both of them until he finally lands on Kacchan – this has to be Kacchan, he has to be. He opens his mouth to say something, ask if this man really is who Izuku thinks he is, but no coherent sound comes out.
“Uh-y- um. You, uh. Wh-” he stammers, looking Dynamight up and down and not believing a single thing he sees, “You- uh.”
“Hey,” Dynamight starts slowly, clearing his throat. “Sup, Deku.”
Izuku stares at him blankly, feeling his heart thud against his ribcage. Once. Twice. Three times.
And then he jumps off the couch and flings himself at Kacchan with an almost inhuman screeching noise. “WHAT THE FUCK, KACCHAN?!”
“SHIT!” Kacchan yelps back, stumbling backwards and toppling to the ground upon Izuku’s impact. “IZUKU, WHAT THE HELL?!”
“STOP YELLING!” Izuku yells, tears bubbling out at he squeezes his arms tightly around Kacchan’s neck and sandwiches him against the floor. He covers Kacchan’s mouth his hand before the blonde can respond. “I am so mad at you, oh my god!” Izuku cries, feeling every single emotion he’s ever felt about Kacchan all at once. He can’t even begin to imagine what all this looks like to their friends, but he doesn’t care. What the hell is even going on? “You owe me so many explanations.”
Kacchan picks that as the perfect time to lick Izuku’s hand, making him shriek and jolt away, rolling off his friend and thudding to the ground beside them.
“DISGUSTING!” Izuku whines, wiping his hand desperately on Kacchan’s shirt. Kacchan grabs his wrist with a grin and shove the infected hand back into Izuku’s face, rubbing his own palm down his cheek. “Hey, stop it! You jerk!”
“You started it,” Kacchan replies, dropping Izuku’s hand with a self-satisfied shrug.
“You know what, I think I deserve to tackle you a few times,” Izuku retorts.
Kacchan just looks at him for a second, expression foreign as a small smile appears on his lips. “Yeah, fair.”
Izuku lower lip starts to tremble, and the tears flow freely before he can stop them, lunging forward to wrap Kacchan in another tight hug. “I missed you,” he managed, voice warbling.
It certainly doesn’t help his emotional state when Kacchan hugs him back and mutters, “Yeah, me too.”
“What the fuck,” someone whispers, making both of them jolt to find that both Ochako and Kacchan’s friend are staring at them like they just saw aliens for the first time. Izuku scrambles back and onto his feet, allowing Kacchan to do the same.
“What the fuck?” Kacchan’s friend repeats, running a hand through his bright red hair like his brain just broke.
“Yeah,” Ochako agrees, look to Izuku for answers he’s not quite sure how to give her.
“Uh,” he starts, gesturing towards Kacchan, “So, this is Kacchan.”
“Not actually my name,” Kacchan says, looking anywhere but Ochako and his friend.
“Right,” Izuku says, “Bakugou.”
Katsuki immediately makes a face, scrunching up his nose. “Ew, don’t say that.”
“What? You just said-”
“You specifically should stick with Kacchan, alright,” Kacchan clarifies, making Izuku snort. “Shut up, Deku.”
“Deku?” Ochako repeats, “What?”
“Oh, he’s not actually-”
“It’s a term of endearment,” Kacchan interrupts, making Izuku blink in surprise as his face turns pink.
“That doesn’t sound like a- never mind,” Ochako sighs, “I don’t even…do I want to know?”
“I want to know!” Kacchan’s friend exclaims.
“None of your business, Eijirou,” Kacchan responds.
Izuku’s still stuck on term of endearment. That, of course, is when Kacchan decides to nudge him with his elbow and say, “Izuku?” in a very soft voice. He might as well have shot him point blank.
“Izuku?” Izuku repeats, voice cracking as he looks at Kacchan with wide eyes. Kacchan’s ears turn red. His ears are pierced!
“It’s just your fucking name, ain’t it?”
“I think I need to lay down for several hours,” Izuku breaths.
“What the hell is going on?” Ochako cries.
“Well, we know each other,” Izuku answers to the best of his ability.
“Oh, really?” Ochako responds, almost shouting, “I couldn’t tell!”
“Hey, Round Face-” Kacchan starts, glaring, but Izuku puts a hand on his chest to stop him before he can start a fight.
“Actually Kacchan, I think you’re the one who has the most explaining to do,” he says, narrowing his eyes at his friend. He notices just then, to his absolute dismay, that despite all his growth over the years his friend still holds the height advantage by a measly inch or two. Dammit.
Kacchan huffs, looking between him and their two watching friends, “Can’t we talk somewhere else?”
“No!” Ochako answers, “You can’t just leave!”
“Yes,” Izuku answers quickly before Kacchan can get aggressive, patting his friend’s chest where his hand still lays, “Yes, we can go talk somewhere else, after you give a very brief explanation to all three of us.”
Kacchan glares at him, but Izuku stares right back long enough for him to give in. “Fine,” he concedes, “I’m Dynamight. Always have been. Only realized that I already knew Izuku when he did the whole face reveal thing. Came to meet him again. End of story.”
“We’ve known each other for a while,” Izuku adds for clarification, then shakes his head in disbelief, “Wait, you knew for multiple weeks and never said anything? Kacchan!”
“How the fuck was I supposed to message you about this!” Kacchan says, throwing his hands up, “Besides, this was funnier.” He grins to himself and snorts. “You had your dumbass surprised face. Looked like you did that time Auntie got you tickets to that movie.”
“You are the worst,” Izuku says, thumping his fist against Kacchan’s chest, “And I’ll have you remember that I’m not the one who peed mysel-” Kacchan’s hands clamps over his mouth with startling efficiency as Kacchan gives him a purely murderous look, ears burning red again. Izuku just cackles against the hand, feeling vindicated.
“Finish that sentence and you’ll never speak again,” Kacchan threatens. Izuku can’t contain his laughter, starting to shake, and he promptly shrieks when Kacchan yanks him into a headlock, mussing up his hair. “Little shit.”
“I know you are, but what am I?” Izuku grins, shoving his way out of Kacchan’s arms, though not without noticing just how muscular they are.
“I know you are but what am I?” Kacchan mocks, making a face, “You’re a five-year-old, that’s what you are.”
“You’re one to talk, you just mocked me like a baby.”
“Shut the hell up,” Kacchan says, elbowing him in the ribs, “Now is there anywhere else to go in this fucking place?” He turns back to the hall that led him here, catching sight of something on the ground that he picks up. “Deku! You threw my fucking hat on the ground!”
“I didn’t know you were wearing a hat?” Izuku responds.
“Yeah? Well, look at this shit,” Kacchan says, fitting the cap to his head and turning around to show it off. Izuku’s eyes go wide at the classic vintage insignia in bright yellow stitching across the front, and he stifles a screech.
“Oh my god, is that limited edition?” he yelps, grabbing at the hat. Kacchan snatches it off his head and out of Izuku’s grasp before he can manage. “That’s an incredibly rare design to see on new merchandise! Let me see!”
“No way, dork, this is mine!” Kacchan says, holding the baseball cap up and just out of reach.
“Come on, Kacchan!” Izuku whines, stretching out as far as he can, “Just let me see it!”
“Just let me fucking talk to you first and then you can be a massive nerd!”
“What do we possibly have to talk about?” Izuku asks, darting around behind Kacchan in an attempt to catch him off guard. It doesn’t work.
“Izuku,” Kacchan says, looking him the eye and making him deflate. Oh.
“Fine,” Izuku concedes, “there’s a stairwell over there.” He gestures towards a pair of doors at the back of the room, and Kacchan grabs his hand and drags him towards them. “Woah!”
“Wait, where are you going?” Kacchan’s friend, Eijirou, calls after them.
“Talk amongst yourselves!” Kacchan calls back, pushing the doors open, pulling Izuku through, and letting them slam shut behind them. Izuku sits down on the stairs next to Kacchan, watching carefully as he places the coveted hat behind him, out of Izuku reach. “Izuku, stop looking at the hat.”
“I’m not,” Izuku lies, snapping his eyes back to Kacchan’s very serious expression. His shoulders slump when he meets red eyes. “Kacchan…”
“I’m sorry,” Kacchan says, holding Izuku’s gaze, “for all the shit I did. I wanted to tell you that to your face.” He swallows, clearing his throat a bit. “I’ve…wanted to tell you that for a long time, actually. Pretty much since the day you left. But I couldn’t find you, so…yeah. I’m sorry.”
Izuku sighs, hugging a knee to his chest. “I…thank you,” he says, smiling a bit, “I, uh, I figured you never meant it.” He takes a deep breath, remembering that last damning argument that barely made up a tiny fraction of all his memories with Kacchan, most of them perfectly happy. In fact, he couldn’t even remember what had caused the argument in the first place, nor did he much care to find out. “I mean, we were just kids, we’re bound to do dumb stuff.”
Kacchan exhales sharply, nodding a bit, “Some of us more than others.”
“Well, you’re not the one who broke three bones in one year,” Izuku jokes. The tension in Kacchan’s shoulders seems to relax when he chuckles. Izuku shuffles closer to him, bumping their thighs together. “Hey, seriously, it’s okay. And thank you.” Izuku smiles, taking in all of Kacchan’s features. He’s so beautiful it’s unbelievable. “Mostly I’m just glad to see you again.”
“Don’t cry,” Kacchan says, but it’s too late. Izuku’s eyes are misting up.
“It really sucked when I had to leave without saying goodbye,” Izuku warbled, sniffling loudly.
“Okay,” Kacchan says under his breath, pulling Izuku in for an unexpected hug, “Okay. Shit, yeah. I’m sorry for that one too. It really did suck.”
“Yeah,” Izuku laughs through his tears, pressing his face against Kacchan’s shirt. He’s so warm, Izuku never wants to let go.
“You’re still such a snotty crier,” Kacchan mutters, and Izuku pulls back to pout at him.
“Mean, Kacchan!” he frowns. “I’m having a lot of emotions right now!”
“When are you not?” Kacchan teases, cupping Izuku’s cheek to wipe a tear away with his thumb. Izuku stills as soon as their skin touches, and Kacchan seems to do the same, eyes locked on Izuku’s. The silence stretches on for a few long moments, then Kacchan coughs awkwardly and drops his hand to his lap, squeezing it into a loose fist. Izuku notices a few rings decorating his slender fingers and forgets to hesitate when he reaches out to inspect them.
“Where’d you get these?” he asks, studying the jewelry intently. One ring is a simple dark silver band, another is a more complicated pattern of vines coiling around Kacchan’s pointer finger. “I like them.”
“Uh,” Kacchan says, “This one is my dad’s.” He wiggles his ring finger, which holds the simple dark band. “And I think my friend gave me the other one.”
“How is Uncle Masaru, by the way?” Izuku asks, looking up with a smile, “And auntie. It’s been a while.”
“They’re fine, I guess,” Kacchan answers, “Working, whatever. How about Auntie Inko?”
“She’s great!” Izuku grins, “Now that I’m moved out, she travels around England with my dad. She’s having a lot of fun, I’d say.”
“Hm, good for her,” Kacchan says, flexing his fingers. It’s only then that Izuku realizes that he hasn’t let go of Kacchan’s hand, but instead interlaced their fingers on the ground between them. Which is embarrassing enough to make his cheeks flush, but what makes it even worse is that Kacchan really doesn’t seem to mind. “So, you’re in school now, living on your own,” Kacchan continues like there’s nothing strange about them holding hands and sitting thigh to thigh, “Mechanical engineering…it makes so much sense now.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” Izuku responds, realizing just how much he and Kacchan actually know about each other’s adult lives despite not knowing who exactly those lives belonged to until just today.
“It means you’re an analytical ass nerd, and I cannot fucking believe I didn’t figure out who you were before,” Kacchan says, “Small Might.”
“Dynamight,” Izuku retorts, “Chemical engineering. You always did like blowing things up.”
“Hey, I know what I like.” Kacchan shrugs, smirking.
“I still can’t forgive you for all those times you blew up my mansions in Minecraft,” Izuku recalls, furrowing his brows, “So uncalled for. And that much TNT was not necessary.”
“But by god was it some damn beautiful destruction,” Kacchan mocks with a deeper voice, clenching his fist to his chest with a dramatic flair.
“Now who’s the dork?” Izuku teases.
“Definitely you,” Kacchan says, grabbing the hat from beside him and shoving it onto Izuku’s head, pulling it so low that Izuku could hardly see with all the hair in front of his eyes.
“Hey!” he protests, pushing the brim of the cap back and swiping at his hair with a pout, “Mean.”
He glances up to find Kacchan’s face very close to his own, with the strangest expression. His ears are red again, his crimson eyes almost surprised as they rove over Izuku’s face, catching on certain parts before landing on his eyes. The jewel ruby tone of his gaze is beautiful enough to drown in, and Izuku finds his own attention flitting between there and Kacchan’s lips. Oh.
“You know I used to have a massive crush on you,” Izuku blurts, face burning, “Might not be the…right time to mention that, but…yeah.”
“Ah,” Kacchan responds, gaze dropping hesitantly to Izuku’s mouth.
“And I…uh…” Izuku stutters, leaning in a bit as Kacchan’s fingers squeeze his.
“Yeah,” Kacchan breathes, closing the tiny distance between them.
Katsuki means to pull away after a few seconds, but he doesn’t get more than a centimeter away before Izuku’s hand is on the back of his neck, pulling him back in and kissing him deeply. Heart palpitations ensue. His entire body is buzzing at every little touch, his breath catching when Izuku digs his fingers into his hair. There’s a sturdy hand gripping his waist. Fuck. This man seems intent on killing him.
When they finally do break apart, Katsuki heaves in air like he’s been drowning, because he might as well have been. Fucking hell.
He slumps against the wall beside him, fighting a grin as he watches Izuku catch his own breath, freckled cheeks stained bright red. That stupid hat is pushed way up, and Katsuki leans over to fix it, making sure to adjust Izuku’s hair out of his face. Izuku gives him an annoying little crooked grin for that, and before Katsuki can stop himself he’s pulled the nerd in for another quick kiss, yanking the hat back over his eyes when he pulls away.
“Fuck. Keep that thing.”
Izuku laughs, twisting the cap around so he’s wearing it backwards. “Thanks, Kacchan.”
“Nerd,” Katsuki grumbles.
“Mm hm,” Izuku hums happily, dropping his head onto Katsuki’s shoulder and slipping his arms around his waist. Katsuki lets him, leaning back into him without really meaning to. “Oh, what’s this?” Izuku asks, his hand finding its way to the keychain on Katsuki’s belt loop. “Still into Mirko, huh?”
“Duh,” Katsuki mutters, resting his head on top of Izuku’s. His stomach grumbles as Izuku starts spouting off random facts about Mirko, as is apparently still his habit. “De-Izuku,” he starts, furrowing his brow, “I don’t fucking know. Can you rant about Mirko after I get something to eat?”
“Call me whatever you want, Kacchan,” Izuku answers, hooking his finger through Katsuki’s belt loop. Katsuki’s ears burn and he flicks Izuku in the nose. “Hey!” Izuku laughs.
“I’m finding myself lunch,” Katsuki says, nudging Izuku off him so he can stand. Izuku jumps to his feet beside him, grinning.
“Allow me to treat you, darling Kacchan,” he says, offering out his hand with the other tucked behind his back, bowing his head slightly. Katsuki snorts, grabbing the outstretched hand and pulling Izuku in for yet another kiss, grinning smugly at his bright red cheeks and wide eyes. “Oh!”
“You do owe me for the hat.”
“We’ll walk around after lunch,” Izuku smiles.
There’s a light knock on the doors to the stairway, making both of them startle. “Uh, Izuku?” Uravity’s voice calls through the door, “We have to go back out soon.”
“Be right there!” Izuku calls back, then turns to Katsuki with a smirk, “Off to do celebrity famous person things, I guess. Give autographs, take selfies, be adored by all.”
“Sign people’s foreheads,” Katsuki adds.
“Oh, yeah, lots of foreheads,” Izuku nods, “People want to get it tattooed.”
“You want my autograph? I think that’s what you just said.”
“That wasn’t a no.”
“Buy me a fucking sandwich and I’ll give you my autograph, how about that?”