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Unbearable Timeline

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Katsuki Bakugou considered himself a lot of things; impressive, talented, attractive— and the lesser traits; such as egotistical, prideful and vain. He wouldn’t admit his weaker personality traits, however — and especially not in front of his so-called ‘friends.’ 

He was strong; he had to be. It was in his bloodline, urging his warrior genes to not be dormant; to show a possibility within his curdled and temperamental blood. 

And he was. He was just like his parents, more so on his mother’s side. He was a warrior, he raged over all and he completed conquests of affirmation — for the highest spot he could procure, for an indisputable win. 

But, Katsuki was sure there was nobody more stronger than the male in front of him; with sweet, glassy orbs and a fragile smile, as if someone, or something was going to peel his smile and lock it in a jar, away from Katsuki where he was unable to reach. 

Deku was more than Katsuki would ever be, and he fully acknowledged it. 

It happened during the summer; when the trees danced joyously within the calm, humid breeze of the sparkling sun and the relaxed clouds. When the sun’s natural rays accentuated the grassy plains, the seaside, or even just the normal pavement where Katsuki was found playing basketball. 

He was busy dribbling the ball when he heard a yell from next door; it was scary and shocking, and it made the seagulls perched on Katsuki’s shed flee away in terror. Katsuki wasn’t one to be afraid, but the tone of her voice— he could detect the scream was from a female because of the pitch, and that he knew what Auntie Inko’s voice personally sounded like. 

Auntie Inko! 

Katsuki let the ball fall as he left his little garden to go check up on what shocked Auntie Inko so badly. His mother yelled for him to stay inside; that what he was seeing was something ‘no eleven-year-old should have to witness—‘ Katsuki didn’t know what that meant; what was wrong with Auntie Inko? Deku should surely know! Speaking of him, where was he? Deku normally always scrambled towards Katsuki, ready to play a one-sided game of basketball, or volley, or whatever sport it was that Katsuki would surely beat him in.

There was an ambulance, and loud, roaring noises. So deafening that Katsuki was sure one of his eardrums popped, and he had to lift a hand towards his ear to check. What was happening? His dad was carrying a body as his mom calmed Auntie Inko down; sobs wracking her petite frame as she cried fearfully. 

His mom hugged the shorter woman tightly and whispered words into her ear. Katsuki turned towards his dad and saw him returning back from his short trip to the ambulance with bloodied hands, a sorrowful frown on his face that turned into a weak grimace when he caught Katsuki staring at him confusedly. 

He trudged over towards Auntie Inko and spoke some small words with her, whilst she just nodded tearfully and wheezed. 

“Katsuki,” his mom called out over the blaring sirens of the ambulance, the sunlight highlighting her stern features as she silently shook her head at him.

“Go inside, dear. Don’t worry.” 

Katsuki did as he was told, and he crept back inside his house. He wasn’t feeling alright anymore, and the thought of basketball made him glare. Why wouldn’t they tell him? Why couldn’t they tell him? He could take it; he was eleven!

He knew something bad happened, and he knew it had to involve Deku, considering he wasn't there; he would’ve come running up to Katsuki with tearful eyes and shaking limbs and Katsuki would’ve had to reassure him and make him play some games with him. 

But he wasn’t here; for the first time, Deku wasn’t running after Katsuki. 

And Katsuki didn’t know what to think. 

The rest of the year was spent with him being by himself, or with his parents, of with Auntie Inko. It was with him staring up at the ceiling lifelessly as he laid upon his bed, wondering if Deku was doing the same. It was of him placing a hand on his  window and wondering if Deku was seeing what he could see right now. He wondered about a lot of things, and when it neared Katsuki’s birthday; he wondered if Deku even knew, if he even remembered. 

“Happy birthday,” his parents and Auntie Inko sang, as they gave him presents and cut the cake and laughed. Katsuki didn’t want to seem ungrateful, but he couldn’t be happy when the person he wanted to spend his birthday with was gone. 

It was nearing spring, now, and Katsuki hadn’t seen Deku in over a year. He wasn’t allowed to, for some reason; maybe Deku just didn’t want to see him? Maybe Deku was afraid Katsuki would laugh at him? 

But, why would Katsuki laugh at his best friend? 

It sucked with Deku being gone; his parents spent more time over at Auntie Inko’s house and that meant Katsuki would have to stay there too. He was left to his own devices, but it was stupid because he always ended up wandering into Deku’s room. Into Deku’s superhero-themed room that held many pictures taken of him and Katsuki, smiling endlessly as they posed dramatically, grins apparent on their faces. 

It made Katsuki sad, and tears welled up in his eyes. He would never let them go, though— because he felt as though Deku was still in this room, and if he cried that meant Deku would lorde over Katsuki showing weakness. And Katsuki would not lose to Deku. 

Sometimes, just sometimes, the tears would slip and Katsuki would curl up on Deku’s bed and cry himself to sleep. 

Everyone was hurt, and Katsuki couldn’t imagine what it felt like to be in Auntie Inko’s place. It would be devastating; to find out your only child is in hospital and you can’t even help them. 

But Katsuki felt as if his heart was ripped into two, jagged pieces, and he wondered if this was even remotely what Auntie Inko felt. 

Katsuki couldn’t even celebrate his birthday with Deku. And that sucked. He was alone, on his birthday, and it was probably the same for Deku. 

Katsuki was many things, but independent was not one; he could function normally, yes— he had multiple friends but they only saw the ‘cool’ side of him. They didn’t see when Katsuki was hurting, when he was upset, when there was something on his mind. 

They didn’t see him like Deku did. Katsuki only felt independent because of Deku, and with him gone, he felt defeated. 

Despite Katsuki’s sour mood, he still had to attend class. He still had to go to school. He still had to function like a normal person. It wasn’t particularly hard— who was he kidding? It was exhausting, and Katsuki felt himself coming home with a migraine every day after school. It didn’t help when his parents were on edge and constanly checking up on both him and Auntie Inko; frightful if something were to happen. 

Katsuki was expecting a dull, boring day where they learnt about algorithims or something equally tedious when their homeroom teacher, Okuda-sensei or whatever his name was, gestured for the class to be quiet. 

“We have a new student arriving today,” he spoke in his usual deadpan voice, and moved his bigger body out of the way for the small one to make an entrance. They were petite and had a mess of curls, a constellation of freckles upon their round face. Wait—

“Deku!?” 

He shouted, surprised, tears threatening to slide down his face before he caught himself; he was in class, with people who weren’t worth an ounce of his time. 

Deku was there, standing at the doorway, with a uniform on and a huge smile plastered on his face. His eyes crinkled when he saw Katsuki, and he waved joyfully. 

He was okay? But, he was in hospital? Does that mean — does that mean whatever hurt Deku was gone now? That Deku was free? 

“Thank you, Bakugou, for introducing Midoriya, but I think he should speak for himself. Introduce yourself to the class, Midoriya.” The teacher dismissed Katsuki with a wave of his hand and gesticulated towards Deku. 

Deku bowed gracefully and spoke in a soft voice, “My name is Midoriya Izuku, and I have hodgkin lymphoma, which is,” here he paused for a second and laughed awkwardly, a hand reaching up to rub the nape of his neck, “a cancer that develops in the lymphatic system. Like, white blood cells— it’s an abnormal collection of them in the wrong place, let’s just say. I hope this doesn’t change how you see me, and I hope we can be the best of friends!” 

The teacher surveryed the class and started to speak when Deku was apparently finished. “Nice to meet you, Midoriya. If anybody says anything – which I’m sure they won’t – you can tell me. Now, your seat is next to Bakugou’s, who you already seem to know.” 

Deku nodded quietly and thanked the teacher before making his way to sit next to Katsuki; he smiled at him and started taking out his books for the lessons that day. Deku looked healthy, his skin glowing and his demeanour positive, but Katsuki was still uncertain. 

Deku had cancer, or still has it— Katsuki wouldn’t know until Deku confirmed it for himself, but with Deku so close to him; taking notes and muttering and fidgeting in his seat, it felt like nothing had really transpired during that one year with Deku gone. 

Katsuki flipped a page and started to write. He’d give his notes later to Deku. The nerd would be thankful. But, for now he’d observe Deku. 

He needs to research more about this type of cancer, and see what he can do - if he can do anything, at all - to help Deku. 

For now he was going to find out what happened during that year with Deku. 

Chapter Text

The bell rang, it was break time. Katsuki stood up immediately and tugged Deku after him. He needed answers now, and he didn’t feel safe with all the lingering eyes on Deku’s figure. 

“Kacchan?” Deku inquired when they reached a quiet spot atop the roof. Katsuki let go of Deku’s wrist and ran a hand through his hair. 

He had no idea how to put this into words; he didn’t know what to say. He didn’t know what wouldn’t hurt Deku. 

“I’m— fuck, Deku, I...” Katsuki gave it up and succumbed to the tendrils of emotions erupting within him. He hugged Deku tightly, worried that he would leave him again. 

“Deku, where were you?” Katsuki pushed himself away from Deku when he felt the boy’s arms wrap around him in acceptance. 

“Kacchan,” he laughed, the sound bubbly and full of cheer. “Thanks for worrying about me—”

“Like hell I was worried, dumbass—!” 

“I got scared you had forgotten about me, but you haven’t... So, thanks.” Deku cut off Katsuki from his vehement defence with a soft-spoken smile and a lilting tone. 

“Nerd...” Katsuki whispered softly, his tone matching that of Deku’s, “how could I have forgotten about you?” 

Deku’s smile was blinding, and he crashed into Katsuki’s arms. “Kacchan,” the younger sobbed heartily, “it was so scary in there! Every day I thought I was going to die; that I wasn’t going to see you anymore! I hated it! I told them that I didn’t care about dying. I wanted to see you! At least just for one last time!” 

“Oi, Deku, don’t give your life away that easily!” Katsuki admonished him; what would actually happen if Deku did disappear? Katsuki didn’t want to imagine it. 

“Haha, I won’t. I nearly was, though, it hurt a lot, Kacchan, and I just wanted to go to sleep. But then they told me that it had been treated after all the chemotherapy, and I got so happy! That means I won’t have to go back there!” Deku sounded so happy, so ecstatic, and Katsuki couldn’t help himself from smiling, too. 

“Of course you won’t go back there, I won’t let you; this time, you’re staying with me for sure.” 

“So, Midoriya, what was it like? Y’know, having cancer?” A random girl in their class had cornered Deku after they had gone back to class; her sneering smile made Katsuki itch to smack her in her gloating face. 

“Um,” Deku murmured, biting his lip as he struggled to formulate an answer. “I guess it was exhausting? I think that would be the most accurate way to describe it.”

”Really? What did you have to go through?” Another girl chirps in, her gaze steady and mocking on Deku. 

“It’s an aggressive form of cancer, and it made me itchy, but uh, I won’t have it again. The doctors said they doubt it would come back again, so I’m glad.” 

“Is it contagious?” A boy shoves his way between the girls and asks ignorantly, his tone beseeching.

”No, it’s not...” Deku pressed in on himself and raised placating hands to attempt to mediate with the gaggle of people surrounding their desks. “I wouldn’t come to school if I was endangering any of you.” 

“Did they have to undress you? And check your body out? Did you have a nurse do it?” Another boy asks, his friends catcalling Deku names such as ‘ladies man,’ and ‘naughty.’ 

“No, I— is this necessary—?” Deku stuttered, his stance uncomfortable but unbeknown to the group of people. 

“What, are you scared?” A girl refuted.

“Yeah, what are you? A pussy?” A boy added on. 

“Oi, you fuckers.” Katsuki had had enough. Deku wasn’t some animal at a zoo for them to dissect; he didn’t need to answer to their stupidly ignorant questions. Katsuki had opted to stay silent to see if Deku would stand up for himself, but it seems he’s still the same as ever. 

Katsuki would have to protect him like usual. 

“Deku, let’s go,” he grabbed the smaller boy by the arm and tugged him away from them, their jeers still within earshot as they rounded a corner of the hallway. 

“Kacchan, I—“ Deku started but Katsuki wasn’t having any of it. 

“Deku, you can’t let them bully you like that!” 

“... I know... I just thought they’d be nicer,” the slighter boy flinched at the bigger’s scolding tone and muttered his reasoning in a tired, and quiet voice.

”Is it overwhelming?” Katsuki asked tentatively.

Deku nodded once, chuckling mirthlessly as he slumped his shoulders. “I thought it wouldn’t be this hectic; that everyone would disregard me, you know? But they’re doing the opposite—“

”— and now you don’t know what to do.” Katsuki finished. 

“Yeah,” he affirmed, “I don’t.” 

“Well, we won’t get anything done in class so let’s just go take a breather. The teachers will understand. I’ll get our bags and tell them, you stay here.” Katsuki left Deku as he reentered the classroom to find everybody huddled at his desk. 

One glance from Katsuki had them all swivelling into their own seats and minding their own business. 

He grabbed his bag and Deku’s stupidly oversized one and headed towards the classroom. The teacher was late and Katsuki didn’t want to waste time. He quickly scribbled a note that Deku was feeling unwell and left it at the desk. 

He just hoped he wouldn’t run into any of his teachers. That would be shit. 

“Kacchan!” Deku waved joyously, Katsuki grunted in acknowledgement. 

“Don’t talk so loud, you’ll draw attention to us.” 

“But, Kacchan,” Deku tilted his head, “Okuda-sensei just said it was okay to miss class.” 

“You saw him?” Katsuki asked, gripping both their bags as he gestured for Deku to follow him. 

“Yeah,” the smaller ran up to him, matching his fast pace. “He said it was nice that you were helping me out since you’re usually so grumpy and uncooperative.” 

Katsuki threw a glare in Deku’s direction. 

“His words, not mine!” Deku blurted out through a laugh. “I think you are nice deep down, but you don’t show it to others because you don’t trust them.” 

“Hm.” Katsuki didn’t offer any opinion on that, but he knew Deku was correct. He was cautious, he didn’t trust people he didn’t know well, because they could betray him at any time. Deku was still able to see through him like he was a transparent shard of glass. 

“So do you think I trust you?” Katsuki changed the topic of the question as he glanced at Deku in his peripheral vision. The boy was giddily walking in line with Katsuki’s steps, his curls bouncing as he let a sweet smile fall on his face. 

“I would hope so, since I trust you, too!”

”What if I did something bad?” Katsuki would never do anything of the sort, but it was a hypothetical question and hypothetical questions challenged the sturdy mindset. 

“If it’s Kacchan, I don’t mind. Because I can always trust Kacchan!” 

God, Katsuki was in love with a fucking angel.