Midoriya’s unicorn-print shirt is really, really itchy. He thinks it’s because Bakugou only naturally-dries his clothes.
Speaking of Bakugou, he won’t stop yelling. And he’s been holding a heavy wooden sign for 3 hours straight. Midoriya thinks that Bakugou’s anger gives him strength boosts but then again, Bakugou never skips out on arm day. His arm be bricks: Midoriya knows this from personal experience. But Midoriya isn’t as strong or as angry all the time, so he says, “Kacchan, can we take a break?”
Bakugou turns to look at him and Midoriya can already see the answer in his glare so he just says, “Nevermind.” Nevermind, I’m not tired at all! I could hold this sign in the burning hot sun and listen to you scream at passerby-ers forever! But like, seriously. He’s suffering.
Midoriya would like to say that all this started when he killed Bakugou’s cactus (by accident, mind you), but it probably really started a few months before that, around the first few weeks of sophomore year of university. He remembers thinking, the day Bakugou Katsuki comes to school in faded distress jeans and a fringed pleather vest and multicolor beads around his neck will be the day he dies.
So he dies.
Honestly though, he should’ve seen this coming. According to multiple sources (read: Uraraka), back when he was a kid, Bakugou would venture in the forest everyday and catch the nastiest little critter crawlers. He would chase after butterflies with nets and crawl all over the trees and grass with his grubby little fingers. He would scrape his knees bloody on the rocks and smudge his face brown with dirt. Bakugou was the rock monster who wrecked havoc on the Earth and hugged it all the same. If Midoriya didn’t know any better, he’d say that Bakugou probably made like Snow White and sang to the birds.
Midoriya is sweating bullets because he has no idea how to react to his friend(?) looking like something out of the Beatle’s Srgt Pepper album cover and posing as one of the most peaceful types of humans on the Earth when Midoriya clearly remembers that one day Bakugou punched him. And the worst thing? No one else says anything either. So he pulls Uraraka aside and whispers like he’s the bearer of the Armageddon and he may as well be, “How?”
“Why is Kacchan a hippie all of a sudden?”
“Oh,” Uraraka smiles like it isn’t the end of the world. “Don’t tell him I told you but, he had a dream that he was a plant.”
“Yeah,” she nods, face serious. “It was a nightmare, too. Shook him pretty badly, he texted me at 3 AM talking about the dick moves he saw people make when he was a plant.” Seeing Midoriya’s disbelieving face, she pulls out her phone, “I kid you not.”
Kid she did not. On the phone, from Bakugou Katsuki, were the words: “HOW THE FUCK CAN PEOPLE DO THIS KINDA SHIT”
“WHAT KIND OF MONSTERS ARE WE”
Followed by: “MORE TREES LESS ASSHOLES”
“Wow,” Midoriya comments. “That dream must’ve really scarred him.”
The thing is, even with Bakugou suddenly openly saying that he loves trees, he cannot bring himself to love Midoriya. Who is practically a tree anyways, with his green mop of hair. Instead, interactions between the two of them go like this:
They’re sitting in class and Midoriya is furiously jotting down notes as Toshinori sensei rambles on about crime and justice when he notices he put down Supreme Court case 32 instead of 23 and he freaks out because he cannot disappoint Toshinori.
(Uraraka tells him to stop worrying because he’s Toshi’s favorite student anyways. Midoriya thinks that it’s because he worries so much about doing his best that he’s his favorite student.)
And like the frantic dumbass he is, swiping his eraser as furiously as he writes notes, he rips a hole in his loose leaf paper. Bakugou reacts by ripping him a new asshole.
“Don’t you,” Bakugou breathes and Midoriya can see flames, “know what the fuck you did?”
“Don’t fucking stutter! Do trees have the ability to stutter and complain when you god awful humans are ripping them from their roots and slicing their skin up into paper?” He slams his hands on the desk and hisses, “Don’t. Fucking. Waste paper.”
Bakugou sits down when Midoriya frantically nods and pisses himself only a little.
The next time, they’re at lunch. Midoriya usually makes his own and so does Bakugou and Midoriya suddenly feels the urge to cover his lunch up when Bakugou, who smells bad cooking and fear like a shark does blood, leans over to see what he packed.
“…Beef, huh,” is all Bakugou has to say.
“Bakugou,” Uraraka warns.
“Is it grass-fed? No GMOs?”
Midoriya doesn’t answer out of fear for his life but Bakugou’s instincts have the ability to cut out his brain and inspect his thoughts because he gets angry anyways.
“Did you know,” Bakugou starts. “That the fucking farts from cows increase the methane in the atmosphere and methane is fucking twenty times more harmful than the carbon shit from our cars. Twenty! And it’s because of their shitty ass diet which—”
Midoriya gets the most terrifying lecture about cows farting.
Bakugou comes back from Woodstock with bruises around his neck to accompany his multicolor beads and Midoriya is pretty sure hippies aren’t supposed to be so violent that they wring each other neck’s out.
But when he asks Bakugou about what happened, he learns that maybe hippies (or actually maybe it’s only Bakugou) are violent enough to try to wring people’s necks.
“Oh Deku,” Uraraka giggles. “Those aren’t choke marks.” She leans in close and puts her hand to the side of her mouth like she’s about to indulge in some great secret. “They’re hickies.”
“Shh, not so loud.”
“ What?” he drops to a whisper.
“Hippies like love and music,” she shrugs. “Bakugou might’ve just found his Ariel.”
Uraraka, he thinks, is his only saving grace.
After the paper incident, Midoriya finds a stack of grainy-gray recycled loose leaf papers; after the beef incident, he finds a bento on his table (it actually tasted pretty good) and he almost cries because who wouldn’t want a bento from a cute girl? He eats and writes and is spared any scary incident with Bakugou for about a month so he looks over to Uraraka, smiling like a saint, and whispers “thank god” with the gratitude of a thousand suns.
“It’s what friends do, right?” she smiles, and God is real.
The best thing is: Bakugou stops picking on him. He looks less murderous and even…proud(?) whenever he sees Midoriya use Uraraka’s gifts and Midoriya sends up to the heavens another word of thanks. Bakugou even begins to trust him enough to let him take care of his pet cactus while he’s away at Bumbleshoot and this is where Scenario 4 starts:
With Midoriya’s back to the wall.
“I-I’m sorry, Kacchan!” he blubbers even though he knows he’ll get it.
“You killed Sashimi,” he says, voice cold. “I was gone for two days. Two fucking days at Bumbleshoot. Promoting environmental fucking justice to the plants and I come home. To a dead fucking plant.”
Midoriya braces himself; he can see Bakugou’s lips open in slow motion and predict the words he’ll say, Don’t you fucking know cacti aren’t supposed to be watered so goddamn much? They’re native to goddamn deserts where there isn’t any fucking water for weeks are you trying to fucking drown—
“I’ll go to a hippie fest with you!” he blurts out, hoping to quell Bakugou’s rage.
It works. Bakugou stops like he’s been drenched in cold water. “What.”
“Um. Well. You don’t trust me with any of your plants now and you wouldn’t miss your fests for anything,” Bakugou’s looking contemplative, good, good. “So I was just thinking you could kill two birds with one stone and teach me how to properly care about plants and continue being proactive!” He searches Bakugou’s face for approval, anything.
“…Fine,” Bakugou finally says. “Next Saturday. Ultimate Space Jam Fest. Meet me at my house. We’re taking my jeep.”
“O-okay!” he nods and breathes a sigh of relief when Bakugou backs off a little.
“And one more thing, Deku,” He suddenly gets all up in his face again punctuates each word with a hard jab and Midoriya’s chest. “Don’t.” Jab. “Use.” Jab. “That fucking.” Jab. “Expression again. Talk about killing birds and I’ll feed you to the birds.”
He stalks off.
Later, Midoriya will tell Uraraka this, full of residue fear and relief and Uraraka will laugh again and Midoriya will think, Yes, only the crazy ones who can laugh in the face of death can be Kacchan’s friends.
“He says this, Deku, but,” she pauses to try to keep the smile from spreading from her face, hiding it behind the back of her hand. “He’s a full-blown hippie. Took the peace, love, rainbows vow too, even. He wouldn’t try any of the violent acts he threatens people with.”
Kacchan? Take a vow of nonviolence? “We’re talking about the same Bakugou Katsuki, right?” he asks. “The one that used to punch someone because they looked at him wrong?”
“Deku, that happened once,” she reminds. “And it was you who got punched.”
“I’m a person, too!” he reminds her. Then, like all the fire had been doused, he rests his hand on his chin and twirls his pencil between his fingers. “I think he hates me. I mean, what did I even do to him?”
“He doesn’t hate you,” Uraraka says, like it’s the most impossible thing in the world. “He doesn’t,” she insists when he gives her a look. “Trust me, Deku. He doesn’t. You just can’t see it yet.” Midoriya thinks that Uraraka has gotten way too comfortable with Bakugou to think that. Midoriya heaves a long-suffering sigh. “Hey, don’t look so down,” Uraraka says. “Hippie fests are supposed to be where people find peace, love, and happiness!”
Peace, love, and happiness indeed.
A week later, this is where Midoriya is. Cramped in Bakugou’s 1983 CJ-5 jeep, which, by the way, is painted with rainbows and multicolor flowers, a huge yellow peace sign on the hood and the words, “IF TREES COULD MOVE THEY’D FUCK US UP” on the side in neon green. He’s sitting in between Bakugou and Uraraka—
(“Uraraka! You’re here too?”
“Hmm?” she cocks her head, making the metal peace pendant around her neck and the large hoop earrings on her ears jangle. “Yeah, I always come with Baku to his hippie fests.”
“You getting in or just chit chatting?” Bakugou comes out of his house, wearing three-quarter cargo pants that hang low on his waist and his pleather hippie vest and no shirt, (let him whisper this again: no shirt) arms full of signs and colored dyes and plant seeds. “Did you wear the shirt I gave you?”
Midoriya is indeed wearing the neon shirt with the graphic of a unicorn with a rainbow trailing after it and jumping over a waterfall. “FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC” comes out of the unicorn’s mouth in a speech bubble.
“Good,” Bakugou nods in approval and dumps his shit in the backseat. “Get in.”
“Um,” Midoriya says. “Where am I supposed to sit?” The jeep only has a long seat in the front. Bakugou stares at him like he’s fucking stupid.
“In between,” he says and Midoriya can hear the duh. “Get in loser, we’re going hippy-ing.”)
—and it’s really fucking hot. 80 degrees June weather and Midoriya is only in his unicorn tee and khakis but Bakugou’s bare, sweaty arm is pressed on his left side and Uraraka is plastered on his right and the heat makes him drown.
It doesn’t help that Bakugou’s old jeep doesn't have great AC either, or the fact that Bakugou and Uraraka are right next to the open windows, arms hanging out the sides of the car, hair being blown back by the wind. Bakugou’s pink-rimmed sunglasses and penchant for hard rock block out all of Midoriya’s complaints so Midoriya settles for silently suffering in the middle.
“Kacchan,” he says.
“Hmm?” Bakugou pops his gum.
“What do you…do? At a hippie fest?”
Bakugou stares at him over the rim of his shades, like, you asked to come and you didn’t even fucking know? “Peace. Trees. Singing. The fucking usual.”
That doesn’t really answer his questions other than give a bunch of hippie stereotypes.
“Make out with your boyfriend,” Uraraka adds to the list and Bakugou slaps the horn, startling Midoriya a foot in the air.
“He is not my boyfriend,” he growls.
“I never said anything about you ,” Uraraka sniffs, then turns to whisper in Midoriya’s ear, “He’s his boyfriend,” and Midoriya has to dodge the elbow jab Bakugou sends their way.
Midoriya doesn’t learn who “he” is until Bakugou is forcing Midoriya to hold up signs for at least three hours and honestly. Midoriya doesn’t really think that:
1) Hippies are this extreme.
Sure, he’s seen the couple of fanatics and extremists. The love for trees is strong. Hell, Midoriya loves trees— they’re basically his brethren and Midoriya is nothing but a family guy. But Bakugou’s love surpassed all. Bakugou is tree Jesus, except with zero chill.
“Fucking littering aren’t you, you fucking slob?” Bakugou yells at a passerby who was tapping the ashes off his cigarette.
“Kacchan, please don’t shout,” Midoriya says when Bakugou holds up his “MORE TREES LESS ASSHOLES” sign and shouts his love for all things green and born of nature and once again Midoriya wonders why he doesn’t receive the same love.
“—Fucking disrespecting our environment, huh?” Bakugou is the one savage on the green hippie lawn party. He learns that Bakugou might be the most extreme hippie there is to exist.
“Kacchan,” Midoriya whispers. “Please don’t yell.” But Bakugou doesn’t hear a word. Midoriya thinks that Bakugou might have impaired hearing because he always speaks in caps. God, where was Uraraka when he needed her?
Then, when he almost lost all hope, Bakugou shuts up. Straight up just. Shuts up. Jaw snapping closed with a click and all that. He even straightens his back and stares in Midoriya’s general direction, like a trained bloodhound and Oh shit, Midoriya thinks. Did he smell my fear or something?
Then, Midoriya hears it. A lulling voice, soft and deep and a little rough but it sounds like a spring meadow and feet splashing in a clear creek and warm sunshine smoothing out skin and bringing out freckles. It’s accompanied by a ukulele and Midoriya thinks distantly, so that’s what they sound like—I’ve never heard a ukulele before.
Then, Midoriya sees him. He follows Bakugou’s gaze because oh, he was looking behind me , and catches bright red. He has to squint his eyes, the dude’s shoulder-length hair is so bright. Midoriya looks at Bakugou and sees him doing the same thing.
Then, the dude smiles and walks closer to them. Midoriya sees a row of shark teeth and he doesn’t think that:
2) Hippies eat meat.
But apparently they do because this guy’s teeth were filed . To a razor point. Bright Guy’s teeth are nice and white and shiny and had they not been so fucking pointy, maybe he would’ve been a toothpaste model but nope. Here he is. Making Midoriya doubt one of the two facts he knows about hippies and that is that they do not eat meat.
Bright Guy stops right in front of them; he’s wearing an obnoxiously bright tie dye shirt that clashes with his hair and ragged denim jeans but Midoriya can’t judge him when he’s wearing a rainbow unicorn print t-shirt.
Bright Guy’s on the last of his verses, “And I can’t help,”
Midoriya’s looking back to gauge Bakugou’s reaction. There’s a flush on Bakugou’s face that's a little different than anger—
“Falling in love with you,” Bright Guy finishes singing and winks at Bakugou.
—and if Midoriya didn’t know any better he’d probably think the redness in Bakugou’s cheeks is—
“Hate,” Bakugou spits. “I fucking hate you, you shitty hair bastard. Why are you singing that fucking song again.”
“Aw, Katsuki, don’t be like that, I know you don’t really hate it,” Shitty Hair Bright Guy elbows him with the weirdest sense of intimacy Midoriya has ever seen from someone who’s known Bakugou.
“I do,” Bakugou insists, lifting his “More Trees Less Assholes” sign and leaning it against his shoulder. “Fucking overrode my efforts of preserving our environment with your fucking singing.”
“Au contraire, I think you were scaring people off with your efforts,” Bright Guys says. “You gotta be softer dude, you’re too aggressive.”
Bakugou cocks his head, “Don’t you like aggression? And hardness and manliness or what the fuck ever—”
“Anyways!” Bright Guys turns to Midoriya. “Who’s this? (“Are you ignoring me?” —Bakugou) My name’s Kirishima Eijirou.”
“Um, Midoriya Izuku,” Midoriya takes the proffered hand. “Nice to meet you.”
“Nice to meet you !” Kirishima says. “You a hippie, Izuku?”
“Great!” Kirishima jabs a thumb to his chest. “I’m a singer. I’ll be singing in USJ concert in a few!”
“Oh, you are? You have a really nice voice, Kirishima!” Kirishima beams.
“I know, even Katsuki thinks so! I serenaded him these past few months and finally—”
“Holy fuck!” Bakugou screams and goes to jab Kirishima in the ribs. “When are you two gonna shut the fuck up?”
“I was— ow! Katsuki stop!” Kirishima tries blocking Bakugou’s jabs. “I was just—ow!—getting to know your friend better!
“I—um, Kacchan’s not my—” Midoriya starts the same time Bakugou says, “Deku is not my friend!”
An awkward silence follows. Midoriya clears his throat, “Um, yeah. What Kacchan said. I’m not his friend.” Bakugou shifts the sign on his shoulder, a gesture of discomfort for anyone not Bakugou.
Kirishima stares at him for a while, face passive, then promptly blinds Midoriya with his white teeth. “Sure, Katsuki’s not-friend!”
“So,” Kirishima continues and leans in. “You here for peace, love, and happiness, right? You’re lookin kinda gloomy there.”
“Well um. I kinda just accompanied Kacchan.”
“I thought you were Katsuki’s not-friend?”
Asflksajfl , Midoriya thinks. He looks past Kirishima to gage Bakugou’s reaction but his face is strangely blank of any murderous intent. He looks like he’s waiting, curious of what Midoriya will say.
“Um, I have to go find Uraraka!” Midoriya blurts out instead. “We’ll meet up with you two later!”
“Aw, no, stay with us—”
“No, no,” Midoriya waves his hands in front of his face. “That’s okay, really. Don’t worry, we’ll be there for the concert! Excited to see you sing, Kirishima, okaybyegottago!”
Midoriya turns his back and he gets the fuck out.
When he thinks he’s put enough distance, he takes out his phone to text Uraraka.
Uraraka: where are you?
Midoriya: behind the portapotty WHERE aAREYOU
Uraraka doesn’t answer for a minute and oh my god, she cannot abandon him in his time of need oh—
Hands clamp down on his shoulder and a “Boo!” sounds loudly next to his ear.
“My god!” Midoriya jumps and whirls around to see Uraraka smiling at him.
“Oh, Deku, I’m not a god, but thank you,” she says. “Tehee.”
“Don’t tehee me,” Midoriya says, flustered. “I just got out of the most uncomfortable situation with Kacchan and this hippie with red hair, Kirishima.”
“Oh, you mean Baku’s boyfriend?”
Midoriya chokes. Then remembers how red Bakugou was when Kirishima had appeared. “Oh, that’s him?”
“Yeah,” Uraraka nods. “A real stunner isn’t he?”
“He’s really… bright.” Midoriya says. “Bright. And friendly.”
“Pure,” Uraraka agrees.
“Sunny. Nice voice.” Midoriya adds. Then holds his head in his hands. “Oh my god, that’s Kacchan’s boyfriend. He serenaded to Kacchan.” Then, a realization strikes him. “Oh my god, he had sex with Kacchan!”
“Deku, you’re getting louder, shhh.”
“Uraraka, he had sex with Kacchan!” Midoriya gestures at the empty space in front of him, as if to say: “There it is! There’s the fact! Kacchan has a boyfriend and that boyfriend kissed and had sex with Kacchan!”
“He did,” Uraraka agrees. “They did it. Probably in the woods. Maybe even in the portapotty we’re standing behind.”
“Oh my god,” Midoriya repeats.
“Why are you so surprised?” Uraraka tilts her head. “Isn’t that what boyfriends do?”
“It’s just that Kacchan has a boyfriend,” Midoriya drags his hands down his face. “ That’s a little bit surprising.”
Uraraka barks out a laugh. “Yeah, when they first met, I thought Baku was never going to let Kirishima get close to him but what do ya know. Next thing they’re having sex in the woods.”
“Uraraka!” Midoriya hisses. “Please, I don’t wanna hear about Kacchan’s sex life.”
“Weren’t you the one screaming ‘they had sex’?” she titters as Midoriya frantically waves his hands around, face flushed in embarrassment. “But anyways, isn’t it normal for friends to wonder about each other’s sex lives?”
Midoriya sputters, “Is it?”
She shrugs, “I do anyways.”
“I mean, well,” he casts his gaze to the grass. “ Am I—”
He’s interrupted by a loud stereo screech. “ Are you ready?”
Uraraka straightens, “Looks like the concert’s about to start.”
“Yeah,” Midoriya mutters. “Yeah, nevermind. We should go.”
“Everybody say hey!”
“Hey,” Uraraka puts a hand on his shoulder. “Tell me later, okay? Now, let’s go see Kiri sing!”
Midoriya lets him get pulled along.
“Where the fuck were you two? You’re late,” Bakugou barks when he spots them.
“At the portapotty,” Uraraka explains and takes her seat on the picnic blanket.
Bakugou’s eyebrows furrow. “Together?”
“Not like that!” Midoriya flails.
Bakugou turns his nose. “Repulsive.”
Uraraka nudges him, “Like you haven’t been to the portapotty with someone else. Someone like your boyfrien—”
“He is not my boyfriend—”
Bakugou pushes at her and his leather vest shifts, showing off a set of bruises on the side of his neck. They’re darker, fresher, and distinctively teeth-shaped. Midoriya flushes and looks away. Kirishima’s teeth must hurt , he thinks and shakes his head to rid of the thought. Now is not the time to be thinking of Kacchan’s sex life.
The sky’s violet with sunset, so the wooden stage lights up with cheep-ass stage lights. Like before, Bakugou stops yelling and straightens up, attention focused up front. (“He’s like a puppy,” Uraraka whispers in his ear. “Puppy love.”)
After the rather loud introduction, Kirishima takes the stage with soft words and gentle ukulele chords and the audience falls in a trance.
Kirishima’s really good at singing. Really good. Midoriya almost forgets all about his inner turmoil when he listens to him but Bakugou’s a presence next to him that’s hard to ignore even when he’s being quiet.
Kirishima ends with “I can’t help falling in love with you” and at one point in the song, he turns and winks. Catcalls rise up; Kirishima’s facing an entire half of the audience as he does this, but Midoriya knows exactly who that wink was for.
“Fucking nasty, disgusting,” Bakugou mutters. “That idiot, what the fuck,” he insults under in his breath, too softly to be taken seriously.
Bakugou’s eyes are trained on Kirishima and Kirishima continuously steals glances their way. It’s too intimate and Midoriya feels like he’s intruding, so he looks away and focuses on picking at the grass next to his feet.
This time, Midoriya doesn’t even have to bother with pulling Uraraka to a private place. Uraraka is the one who stands up and drags him behind the portapotty.
“I get it,” Uraraka says and hell. Midoriya doesn’t even know what there is to get . “You’re jealous.”
Midoriya sputters. He’s been doing that a lot today.
“Don’t think I don’t know,” Uraraka continues, wagging a finger at him. “I was watching you the entire time. You’re jealous. I just don’t know of whom, though. Baku, for finding a boyfriend? Kiri, for being close to Baku?”
“I don’t know,” he sighs instead. “How’d you even—”
“You don’t think you’re friends with Baku, right?”
Midoriya stops. Shifts.
“Deku, you’ve asked me before if you two were considered friends,” she reminds him.
“I don’t know, Uraraka, didn’t I tell you about the 4 scenarios? And more?”
“Yeah,” she says.
“Honestly, without you, how would I survive near Bakugou?” Midoriya sighs. “It was only because of the stack of organic papers you brought me and the bento you packed that I was able to get on Bakugou’s good side.”
“Deku,” Uraraka furrows her brows.
“Like, I’ve never seen him so…not murderous? with me before. He even let me take care of his cactus, which of course I fucked up and that’s why I’m here but,” he throws his hands in the air in exasperation.
“All he does is yell and threaten me AND—one time he punched me I will never forget that so like, do I even want to be his friend? Is it bad that I still kind of want to anyways?”
“Deku!” Uraraka yells and Midoriya stops. “Now I finally have your attention.”
“O-oh,” he says eloquently.
“Deku, did you think those gifts were from me?”
“They…weren’t?” Uraraka shakes her head and offers a small smile. Oh. The gifts suddenly appearing on his desk instead of being handed to him, Bakugou’s proud look when he used them, Bakugou’s frustration when he couldn’t take care of Sashimi the catcus—
“Oh,” Midoriya says. It all makes sense. “Kacchan was the one who gave me them.”
Bakugou wasn’t yelling at him so much as he was nagging .
“What about the punching? I said I would never forget that, you know,” he reminds himself. And here’s where Scenario 0 plays in his head.
Scenario 0 starts before Hippie Kacchan makes an appearance. Midoriya meets Bakugou freshman year in university and here’s the thing: Bakugou and Midoriya weren’t enemies . No. In fact, Midoriya had always kind of. Trailed behind Bakugou. Looked after him in a way. Or at least tried to. For a proud guy like Bakugou, it’s no surprise he got fucking annoyed of it.
But anyways, one day they’re doing something and all of a sudden, pain blooms across his cheek and he’s on the floor, fingers gingerly touching his newly-formed bruise because god damn . Bakugou does not skip out on arm day. His arms be bricks. “God fucking dammit!” Bakugou curses at him. “Stop fucking looking at me!”
“Um,” Midoriya says from the ground. He coughs. “Okay, yeah.”
He doesn’t fight back, doesn’t really show anything different after the incident. His promise about the looking lasts for about a good week before Damn, Midoriya. Back at it again with the stares. So basically nothing really changes. Except, well.
Maybe he does hold a little grudge against Kacchan. Maybe even a little fear. But even though Bakugou makes threats, he doesn’t ever make a move to hit him again.
Then, Bakugou became a hippie.
And then, apparently, had discreetly slipped him environmentally-friendly gifts and brought him to a hippie fest.
“Deku?” Uraraka says, breaking him out of Scenario 0.
“Oh my god,” he says for the fourteenth time today. He drags his hand across his face for the fourteenth time today. Why couldn’t Kacchan have just said it? Instead of being all sneaky and nagging him about bettering the environment and secretly giving him gifts? That would’ve saved them a whole bunch of trouble and Midoriya a whole bunch of confusion and relationship friendship ache. “Oh my god.”
“Deku,” Uraraka starts, confused, “what did you realize?”
“Ughhh,” he groans for the fourteenth time today. “Kacchan’s so. Difficult.” He covers his face with his hands and buries his head deeper when a small smile threatens to break out on his face. “He’s so emotionally stupid, he could’ve just said so.”
“I still have no idea what happened, but I guess you figured out your friendship with him, huh?” Uraraka punches him in the arm. “What did I tell you about him in the first place, huh? Now you only accept my words after a week of agonizing over it.”
“Friendship, huh,” Midoriya stares down at his shirt, the words “FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC” pouring from the unicorn’s mouth. Maybe Bakugou even… no fucking way. Bakugou wouldn’t have thought so far into this he would’ve planned out Midoriya’s goddamn tee shirt. “Maybe I wouldn’t use that word. But at least it isn't hateship.”
It’s late at night and despite how chill (most) hippies look, they’re a bunch of real party animals. Chill party animals. Midoriya is sitting on a log bench, in a circle around a fire. To his right, Uraraka. To his left, Bakugou. And to Bakugou’s left, Kirishima.
They’re talking, nothing special. Then, Bakugou excuses himself to use the portapotty where Midoriya and Uraraka had been discussing their entire relationship dynamic and Kirishima hops over to take the spot Bakugou left. “So,” he starts. “What’d you think of your first hippie fest?”
“It was,” Midoriya thinks on it for a while. “It was good. Yeah.”
Kirishima nods, smiles, and the glowing never stops. Maybe, Midoriya thinks. It’s just Kirishima’s goddamn inner radiance instead of his bright red hair and bright white teeth.
“Hey, can I ask you something?” Kirishima says.
“Well, even if you’re a…not-friend, I want your blessing.”
“Um. You want to marry Kacchan?”
Kirishima barks out a laugh and scratches at his hair sheepishly. “I guess, eventually. But just permission to date or whatever. I really. Um. Like him. Yeah.”
Midoriya blinks. “Sure. Yeah.” He smiles. “Actually, you’re pretty good for Kacchan, Kirishima. But Kacchan on the other hand, well. Let’s say he’s not too good with expressing his feelings.”
Kirishima looks at him with amusement. “You sure seem happier. Did something happen to make you re-evaluate your relationship with Katsuki, Katsuki’s not-friend?”
“Just,” ugh God, it was so simple and so straightforward. He just never noticed. “Just something stupid.”
“So you two are friends!” Kirishima’s face breaks out in a smile. “I knew it! With that cutesy nickname—hey can I borrow that? Kacchan. I like it. And your shirt: ‘FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC’. Unicorns never lie, you know?”
“Wait, and you two aren’t boyfriends? You asked for my blessing.”
“Oh, well,” Kirishima turns sheepish again. “Okay, so we did have sex already. And all kissing and um. Handholding. And I did serenade to him and stuff but. I guess we’re not official yet? We kind of are but we just never announced it, you know?”
Midoriya nods. Kacchan has the emotional range of a teaspoon. Midoriya pauses. Huh. Kacchan really wasn’t lying when he insisted he and Kirishima weren’t boyfriends. Technically, anyways. “Yeah, go be boyfriends, I’m happy for you and Kacchan,” he says. “Please take care of him. Even though Kacchan is a hippie now he is still pretty violent and yells a lot but even though he threatens to hit you, he actually won’t and he’s pretty sensitive too. Something as small as looking at him the wrong way can set him off, but he’s better now and plus if he’s feeling guilty he’ll try to repay you in the weirdest ways and say sorry in all ways except verbally and it’s kind of confusing at times. Or all the time.”
“Yeah,” Kirishima agrees, like. I know, bro. I’ve been there. “And sometimes when he’s feeling new feelings he’ll just automatically misconstrue them as anger but I promise that I’ll always hug and kiss him and tell him ‘I love you’ and sing to him even though he says he doesn’t like it but he actually does he just won’t admit it and—”
“Shhh, he’s coming!” Uraraka shushes them and they shut up.
“The fuck are you doofuses smiling at me for?” Bakugou growls and Midoriya thinks of a deeply insulted Pomeranian with more bark than bite.
“Nothing, nothing,” Kirishima answers and rests his chin on his hand. “I just really love you.”
Bakugou blushes and immediately snaps at Kirishima to shut the fuck up, oh my god, you fucking dumbass. Oh he’s right, Midoriya thinks. New feelings he doesn’t understand = anger. Or maybe. He’s just flustered. He giggles and Bakugou shoots him a glare.
Bakugou takes his seat next to Kirishima, only cursing five times and raising his voice twice before Kirishima decides they sing campfire songs.
“Any suggestions?” Kirishima asks, picking up his ukulele. “Oh! How about the Campfire Song Song? The C-A-M-P-F-I-R-E—”
“Stop, stop right there,” Bakugou groans. “I am not dealing with you meme-loving fuck.”
Kirishima laughs. “Alright how about—”
“If you fucking say ‘I can’t help falling in love with you’, I will knock your freaky shark teeth down your throat.”
“Okay, okay,” Kirishima raises his hands placatingly. “How about the Beatles?”
Bakugou grunts and that’s as good as it’s gonna get.
“Here comes the sun, here comes the sun and I say, it’s alright…”
“You fuckwad, it’s the middle of the night,” Bakugou mutters but lets him sing.
Midoriya has to agree with Bakugou on this one. It’s 1 am and the sun isn’t going to come out for another 5 hours. Yet, with the way the campfire dances across Bakugou’s form, flickers across his face to smooth out his harsh lines, and shifts and reflects in Bakugou’s eyes as he stares at Kirishima’s face makes him seem softer. Kind of like what Bakugou’s like under all that prickly, not-good-at-feelings exterior.
There’s something in Bakugou’s eyes, too. It must be the campfire again. Because Bakugou’s eyes have never looked so bright and not-murderous. It must be the song, or the way the night makes things calmer. Or maybe it’s just Kirishima. Here comes the sun, indeed. Kirishima is bright enough to be Bakugou’s personal little sun.
Kirishima is facing slightly to the left and Bakugou leans towards him too so that there’s only a little gap of shared space between them. And well. If they meet in the middle at some point during the song that's no one’s business but theirs and their nosy friends’.
Uraraka giggles and leans to whisper in his ear again, “Do you see the look on Baku’s face? He’s such an emotion idiot. It’s so cute.”
“Yeah,” he whispers back. “Still can’t believe Kacchan managed to nab someone like that.”
“He still hasn’t told me the whole story yet,” she says. “Oh man, it must be a ride.”
The next day, when they’re getting ready to leave, Bakugou exchanging parting words and parting “words” with Kirishima, Uraraka asks him, “So…? How was your first hippie fest?”
“It was good,” Midoriya starts, prepared to give her the same response he gave Kirishima. “Well, let’s just say it delivered on its promise to bring me some peace, love, and happiness.”
Uraraka squeals and hits him in the arm. “That means you have to come to the next one! Maybe we can find some cute romantic partners like a certain blond firecracker did. It’s next month so get ready, okay? It’s gonna be a ride.”
“Yeah, I got it,” Midoriya hits back. “Now that I know a little of how Kacchan works I think I can deal with him better.”
“You getting in or just chit chatting?” Bakugou honks the horn on his jeep. “Come on, you slow fucktards.”
“Oh my god, Baku! We were having a bonding moment!” Uraraka complains and gets in the front, Midoriya following to sit cramped in the middle. “Do you even know what that is, you dumpster goblin?”
“Shut the fuck up, Round Face,” Bakugou aims an elbow jab in her direction and Midoriya catches the brunt of it again and Bakugou does not skip out on arm day.
Ah, peace, love, and happiness, Midoriya thinks as he nurses his side. Friendship is magic, indeed.