“I still can’t believe you always agree to come with us here,” Kaminari was laughing in his ear as Hitoshi hummed, more invested in his phone but in truth, he just wasn’t focusing on anything. He’d got barely a wink of sleep the night before and he just wanted to curl up in bed. “Get onto the rink with us whenever you want, too, alright?!”
But recently, he’d been having an embarrassing tendency to drop basically everything and be out the door in seconds whenever he saw his friends mention on their group chat that they were going to go to the local roller skating rink.
It hadn’t meant to be like this. The first time had been after his last class, where Kaminari had forced him to tag along as a wager from a lost bet, and Hitoshi begrudgingly had to agree as the others all cheered. Even Bakugou had thwacked him around the head, saying ‘you’ll enjoy it, Eyebags’. Hitoshi knew he was wrong, though, even if he didn’t say it out loud, not just because he’d never set foot in roller skates or, because he didn’t like crowded places and noise. But he just never seemed to find fun in the same things that other people did.
His idea of fun was reading until his eyes could no longer take it. Researching up on psychology, something that fascinated him more than anything. Being taught how to kick ass by his dad. Hanging with his little sister, plaiting her long hair and entertaining her ideas from doll tea parties to running through the strawberry fields way too early in the morning. People were fascinating to him, but not to be with as much. He wasn’t even sure how he’d even been roped into this friend group in the first place.
You and me both, Bakugou had texted him one night. It’s ‘cause of the loud shitty-haired extroverts we’ve adopted, that’s why.
Hitoshi agreed, even though it was more the other way round, because he sure felt Kaminari was the one who had adopted him by the way he’d ruffle Hitoshi’s hair and smile at him and nudge him into conversations or nudge him out if he could see it getting too much. And if Hitoshi truly, truly dug deep into his heart - he was thankful. Sometimes, he’d feel some kind of warmth in his chest when Kirishima patted his back and sent him his blinding shark smiles. Sometimes, his heart would lift when Ashido would talk animatedly with him about anything and everything, so ready to include him and care about him. Sometimes, he would smile when Sero would crack a cute joke at him and always make sure to tell him to eat and sleep well.
But that still didn’t mean he was about to understand their ‘fun’.
He’d been curious, a little. But the instant he entered the place and heard the absolute avalanche of noise, saw the monstrosity of bright neon colour, he knew this wasn’t ever going to be the place for him. He was pretty sure he was starting to get dizzy one second in until he felt an arm around his shoulders, and a kind-faced Sero was there to calm his heart down a little. “You good, dude?”
“Uh, yeah, yeah...uh...so this is cool. Can I go now?”
“Already?! No way!” Kaminari whined, bursting forwards to grab Hitoshi and shake him about, making the latter sigh. “You gotta stay with us, man, pleeeease, it’s gonna be so fun!”
“But you don’t need me, right? I saw your beloved rink, now you lot have your fun and I’ll go have mine elsewhere-”
“Nooo, no, dude, please don’t be like that, if you don’t want to get on the rink, you...you can be in charge of snacks!” Kaminari cheered as if he had hit the jackpot, and Hitoshi raised an eyebrow at him, calmly brushing the boy’s hands off of him. But when he opened his mouth to reject, he actually thought for a moment.
He’d be alone while they skated. He could sleep for a while. He could listen to music, or read on his phone. It’s not like he’d have much better to do at home.
So he raised his head and nodded, which seemed to be much to Kaminari’s surprise by the way the boy gasped so loudly that it was ear-shattering and leant forward to slam him into a hug, squeezing tight. “I LOVE YOU, DUDE!”
The words had Hitoshi blinking a little, warmth spreading through his body yet again but before he could reply, Sero was chopping Kaminari’s neck. “Let the guy down, man - and Ash and Bakugou are already on the rink, we gotta go catch up with them! Though I don’t know where the heck Kirishima’s gone-”
“BROS! GUESS WHO WON A SHARK PLUSHIE!” a loud voice hollered at them and they turned around to see Kirishima waddling over to them while hugging a shark toy that was almost the size of him, and Sero said a slightly astounded, “U-Uh that’s...that’s awesome?” while Kaminari burst into laughter and ran over to tackle both the shark and Kirishima which had them both yelling. Sero looked at Hitoshi, and Hitoshi snorted a little as he waved a hand. “Join the dumbasses.”
Sero grinned, ruffling Hitoshi’s hair before he ran over with a war-cry and piled onto the other two who did a miraculous thing that was a mixture of groaning and cheering. Hitoshi watched them with a grin, forgetting that his scarf wasn’t quite hiding it but no-one was seeing him anyway so it was fine.
So Hitoshi sat on the bench outside the rink with the shark plushie slumped against him, watching the others. He could see that Sero and Kaminari were the most novice of skaters out of the five but they were good enough to hold their own, just skating for fun as they laughed with each other and messily tried to do tricks they were nowhere near to achieving, and though Kirishima seemed miles better than them, he’d join them with laughter and guiding them through some of it though it would mostly end up with all of them becoming jaggedy messes roaring in raucous laughter. Ashido was just incredible, dancing across the rink with shuffles and crosses, sometimes taking hold of the others’ hands and swinging them around bringing more joy to the place. But Bakugou was really something. He speed-skated like a professional, face calm and collected as he soared around the rink, flashing from one place to another, and sometimes he’d join the others just to do something like take Kirishima by the hand and twirl him, having the latter giggling while the others wolf-whistled at them.
Hitoshi was all smiles watching them, so much so that it hurt his face and he even switched his music playlist to a happier one, just to fit the mood.
He checked his watch and realised that it wasn’t going to be long until the others took a break, so he got up and shoved the shark under the bench, holding a finger to its face and saying a stern, “ Stay,” before he left to try and find out where the snack place was. It didn’t take long to find it from the way it was lit up and he went over, sighing inwardly at the queue that wasn’t even that long but he wished he could just get this over with. But, he was fine with waiting.
A few minutes passed before his phone buzzed through his earphones and he looked down at the screen, only for it to say ‘one photo from erieri’ and he was already smiling. He swiped at the notification and sure enough, it was a picture of her grinning with paint in her hair and across her face, so cute that Hitoshi’s heart instantly clenched.
‘big bro!’ the text said. ‘ive painting all afternoon!! dad said it looks really good, i cant wait for you to come home so i can show youuuuuu!’
Ever since Eri had got a phone, Hitoshi’s world had got a whole lot brighter even more often.
He texted back a ‘i can’t wait to see it!!’, and he was only snapped out of his soft state by the voice that said, “Hello, may I help?”
He snapped his head up, blinking as he took out one earphone on instinct. The girl was sweetly smiling at him and he nodded awkwardly in return, opening his mouth to answer until someone else was tapping the girl’s shoulder, and there was a short conversation going on before the girl was smiling and already taking off her apron. “Have a good shift, Deku, I’ll see you tomorrow!”
“Bye Ocha, you too!”
Hitoshi blinked, unsure what to do as he stared at the counter, then he was again jolted out of it by a voice. A warm, boyish, bright one. “Hello, sorry about that! What would you like?”
“U-Uh…” Hitoshi looked at the array, and singled out what he wanted as the boy nodded, typing it into his computer.
Hitoshi shook his head, looking up finally and he blinked, frozen for a second. He wasn’t quite sure what was freezing him more - the way this boy looked, or way the boy was looking at him. All that filled Hitoshi’s head was cute, cute, cute as he took in the unruly curly hair, the sweet abundant freckles painting a small sweet face with a big but even sweeter smile decorating it too. His eyes were big and a warm green that was doing something to Hitoshi’s voice box as all his words died, and he tried to cough. The boy’s eyebrows furrowed slightly, then. “Oh gosh, are you okay?”
“Y-Yes,” Hitoshi squeaked out, before fiercely clearing his throat and shaking his head, trying to put on a calmer facade. “Just...sorry.”
“Is it a lack of sleep?” the boy asked, smiling as he crossed his arms over the counter and tilted his head, pointing between their eyes. “See, matching eyebags! You really rock them though, how do you do that?”
“They’re a permanent accessory at this point, I think,” Hitoshi said a little bitterly, but the way the boy laughed so purely had his lips curving as he rubbed the back of his neck. “Uh...hope you can get some sleep, then.”
“Me too! I’ve just been worrying a lot lately. Pressure that I want to get rid of and- ah! Not that you need to know any of that,” the boy laughed bashfully, and Hitoshi smiled fondly, about to say he could vent if he wanted until the boy was snapping into sudden action, clicking his fingers. “Let me get your food!”
Hitoshi turned his head, about to give a short apology to whoever was behind in the queue before realising in surprise that there was no-one there. Huh. He turned back around, before backing up on instinct when the boy was rushing back, slamming all the food down. “A-Ah, you didn’t need to...get all of it at once…”
“Sorry, I- I make things a challenge sometimes,” the boy said shyly, and Hitoshi wanted to tell him he never needed to apologise for anything he did before realising that was not how he wanted his entrance into the flirting world to go. “Would you like a bag at all for the closed food?”
Once all the food was safely bagged or on a tray, Hitoshi’s eyes snagged onto the name tag the boy had on. Izuku Midoriya. But what had that girl called him before - Deku?
He snapped out of it when he heard Midoriya- Deku- gah, he didn’t know, the cute boy was just saying the final price and Hitoshi fished into his wallet and managed to get enough money that the boy sweetly thanked him for.
“Hey, I don’t think I’ve seen you around here before! First time?”
“Mm. My friends dragged me into it.”
“Ahh, I see. Not your scene then?”
“Huh? No, it- it could be my scene-”
“It’s alright, you don’t need to pretend,” the boy snickered, pushing the food closer to Hitoshi who flushed a little, turning his face away. “I’m not judging. I’m not quite ever sure if it’s my scene either, but I’ve been working and coming here a long time, I’ve learned to fall in love with it. The colours, the people, the rink - it’s all lovely to me. But, it’s nicest late at night. When there’s not as many people around.”
The light dreaminess in the boy’s voice had Hitoshi wondering. “How late does this place open for?”
“Depends. Weekdays like today are until ten pm!”
“I see. Well, I hope you enjoy your nights here.”
The boy laughed brightly which was confusing but Hitoshi was just enamoured by how his freckles scrunched with his face. “Thank you, I hope you enjoy your day here a bit more!”
“Thanks, thanks...uh, Deku?”
“Ah.” The boy looked down at his name-tag. “You read it like that too?”
“It just sounded...it suits you,” Hitoshi said a little lamely, but the way the boy seemed to light up renewed his confidence. “Is it alright if I call you that?”
“Is that implying we’re going to talk more?” Deku asked, smile big, eyes glittering, and it was almost too much. Then Hitoshi fully noted the song that was playing through his ear at the worst time.
‘Sickeningly sweet like honey, don’t need money, all I need is you.’
He had to swallow to ease his drying throat, stuttering a little as he cursed himself a million times inside his head, hoping the blush he could easily feel wasn’t too prominent.
“Bye,” Hitoshi said quickly as he grabbed the food and turned around, walking straight off before he could make any more of a fool of himself. He made his way over to the edge of the rink, noting that the others seemed to be coming off it now and he mentally patted his back for the good timing.
“Sharky!” Kirishima cheered as he pulled out the shark from under the seats and collapsed on it, with Bakugou asking a deadpan, “You’re really gonna call it fuckin’ Sharky?”, and Kaminari slammed his arm around Hitoshi’s shoulders.
“Yo, you got so much food! We need to pay you back, man!”
“Nah, don’t worry about it, it’s surprisingly not all that expensive here…you guys had fun?”
“Oh hell yeah! We all ended up falling at the end though,” Sero said with an amused groan in his voice as he rubbed his side, and Bakugou was screeching, “IT’S NOT MY FAULT YOU LOT WERE IN THE WAY!”
“YOU COULD’VE JUST SLOWED DOWN?!”
“I DON’T ADJUST TO FIT YOU EXTRAS!”
“Come on, let’s get a table before Bakugou explodes into fire,” Ashido said brightly, grabbing Hitoshi by the arm and rushing off, making the guy blink in surprise as he tried to follow suit. Get a table they did, with Kirishima insisting they have a seat for Sharky too, and it wasn’t long before they settled into the casual friendly atmosphere the group had from times like lunch together. Hitoshi watched them, chipping in sometimes if he wanted, but his eyes did wander a little.
Deku was still at the till, cleaning the counter now as his head bopped to the music playing in the rink. Hitoshi didn’t know how long he looked, a smile slowly stretching over his face until Deku looked up, warm green eyes meeting dark purple. Hitoshi blinked in surprise at the same time Deku did, smile faltering but then Deku was biting his lip, looking down at the counter that he fiercely wiped a bit more. God, he was adorable, and this time Hitoshi’s stare was a little more purposeful and his heart did a mini fist-pump when Deku looked up to send him a bashful smile before turning around to cater to some products.
“What are you staring at so scarily?” Sero was suddenly laughing from next to him and Hitoshi froze. Had his stare been scary? Oh God, had that smile from Deku not been bashful but anxious?
“A-Ah not scary, just intense!” Kaminari corrected quickly, shooting Sero a glare that the latter slinked back at. “What caught your eye, my guy?”
“Nothing,” Hitoshi sighed, resting his cheek against his palm. “It’s fine.”
What was the point in trying, when he was never going to be a good match for a guy that cute.
About twenty minutes passed before Sero suggested they should just get home instead of skating more because it was getting a little late, and the others agreed. Hitoshi trailed after them like he usually did, and he was almost out when a hand tapped his wrist, and he turned only to be faced with Sharky. He blinked in slight terror, wondering if this doll was suddenly alive because that was horrifying - until a mess of curls and a sweet face peeked out from behind it, grinning. “You and your friends left this big guy behind!”
“I see, I see. Kirishima would’ve been devastated,” Hitoshi nodded, saying his thanks as he took the plushie, and Deku smiled some more, though this time more nervously, hands clasping behind his back.
“You know I...I was kind of surprised you were with that group!”
“Hm? You know them?”
“Ah, kind of. I know Bakugou for sure - I’ve known him since childhood and we live on the same street.”
Hitoshi blinked at that. This sweet guy and Bakugou? “Ah, so...do you go to my- his university too?”
“Mhm! Different faculty, though!”
“I see, I see, um...then maybe I’ll see you around there.”
Deku’s eyes lit up. “Wow! Maybe!”
Hitoshi had an urge to ruffle his hair but he was seizing up at the sudden slam of the door behind him opening so wide it crashed against the wall, and he turned around to see Bakugou with his foot up, clearly having kicked the door open as his eyes narrowed.
“There you fucking are, Eijirou won’t stop wailing ‘bout the fact that he lost both of you,” Bakugou grumbled, grabbing the shark and Hitoshi’s arm, before he looked forward and raised an eyebrow at Deku. “Nerd. Get back to work.”
“Are you my boss now?” Deku asked, crossing his arms before laughing when Bakugou flicked his forehead. “Okay, nice seeing you, Kacchan.”
Deku left before Hitoshi could even say goodbye, and he watched after him for a fruitless moment, mouth opening but then Bakugou was dragging him out. “What you doin’ talking to that loser?”
“He just came to return the shark.”
“Oh. That took that long?”
“Hey, it’s not like I was gone for ages.”
“Okay...by the way. Don’t be an idiot and stick with us when you don’t want to. We’re comin’ here again tomorrow, Pikachu’s gonna ask you if you wanna come, remember you can say no, alright?”
“Yeah,” Hitoshi said, a small smile growing on his face as he felt Bakugou’s hand around Hitoshi’s arm tightening, protectively. “Thanks. But...I think I’ll say yes? It’s fun, and watching you guys is pretty nice.”
“That’s weird as fuck but fine, if you say so but this is on you, I ain’t savin’ your ass if you need an out.”
“Yeah, yeah, I got it.”
After some ruffling and light punches from the others for worrying them, they all made for the train station except for Hitoshi whose home was in walking distance so he waved goodbye to them and it wasn’t too long before he was yawning as he trudged up to his doorstep and lazily fumbled with pushing his key through the hole so he could get inside.
“TOSHI!” an excited voice called out not even a second after he’d finished taking his shoes off, and he grinned as he walked up the stairs and in no time, he was picking his little sister up and twirling her around before collapsing onto the bed, laughing while he hugged Eri tight and the girl hugged his head.
“How you doing, love?”
“AWESOME! I MISSED YOU!"
“I know, I know, me too - so a little birdy told me there were some really good drawings here?"
“I’m not a little birdy!” Eri huffed and Hitoshi chuckled, patting Eri’s head.
“Okay, okay. Can I hug you while you show me?”
“Maybe,” Eri huffed even louder, turning her head haughtily but she was giggling when Hitoshi hugged her tighter, and they both laid down while Eri talked animatedly about her drawings and Hitoshi listened.
“I met a boy today,” Hitoshi said an hour later as they both laid down eating some chocolates Eri had managed to stash away. And he knew he wouldn’t be able to talk to the others about this, especially if Bakugou knew Deku, so it wouldn’t be so bad telling his little sister. “He’s really cute.”
“As cute as me?!”
“Not quite, but very cute. And he…sparkles. I think. Or his freckles remind me of sparkles, and his hair is big and curly and green.”
Eri gasped, and Hitoshi laughed as the girl moved closer, resting her chin on Hitoshi’s chest as she looked at him with wonder-filled eyes. “He sounds like a fairy!”
“He probably could be a fairy…”
“Do you like him?”
“I want to.”
“Talk to him! Fairies are really really nice, you know? And they can make you buttermilk!”
“Should I ask him to make me buttermilk?” Hitoshi laughed and Eri nodded very seriously.
“Me too, bring me some!”
“We’ll see, we’ll see. But he’s so bright, Eri, like the sun. What if I get burnt if I go near him?”
“You won’t! If you like him and he likes you then it’s meant to be and no-one can get hurt!”
Hitoshi smiled, tapping Eri’s nose. “You think he could like me?”
“Everyone has to like my big bro or they go through me!” Eri yelped, trying to twist her face into a scary expression but it wasn’t working one bit, and Hitoshi kissed her forehead.
“Hey, let’s go get ready for bed.”
“Yeah. It’s nearing your bedtime and I’m very, very tired. We can talk more about fairies and draw lots tomorrow, okay?”
So Hitoshi tucked the girl into bed and wished his parents goodnight before finally he could accept the sweet salvation of sleep as he collapsed into his room, sighing. But he could just never do it, no matter how hard he tried, he found it so difficult to sleep.
“White noise, come at me,” Hitoshi sighed as he plugged in his earphones and immediately felt the fuzziness fill his ears and brain. He closed his eyes, smiling one more time at the thought of green and fairies as he hoped sleep would take him soon.
So here he was. The seventh time he had joined the others at the rink, and he was sitting at a table, tired head resting on crossed arms as only his eyes-up peeked out, so he could dreamily watch the cute worker who was chatting with another. Hitoshi hadn’t been able to talk to him again, at all. He hadn’t been at the snack register again whenever Hitoshi went and he was always reversing jobs from being at reception to cleaning to observing the rink for any disasters, and Hitoshi was an idiot who could only watch. With his probably scary gaze…
He was just a little infatuated with someone he had no idea how to talk to, and it made him sigh to himself as he flopped his head into his arms completely, sighing against his sleeve.
Then he felt a presence drop into the seat opposite him, as a voice said dynamically, “Oi. The fuck’s up with you.”
Hitoshi looked up sleepily to see Bakugou there, grabbing one of the drinks Hitoshi had bought and downing it. “I’m fine, it’s nothi-”
"It's like you’re getting sadder and sadder each time we come and I ain’t havin’ it.”
“You caring about me, man?”
“Fuck no. It just brings down the mood-”
“How did you get a boyfriend?”
Bakugou blinked, surprise washing over his features completely before he narrowed his eyes sharply. “The fuck is that supposed to mean?”
“It’s just a question. How? Did it take effort?” Hitoshi asked, and Bakugou stared for a little while longer before snorting, leaning back smugly.
“It wasn’t hard, Eijirou fucking worships me.”
“Oh really? It seems like you’re the one who worships him, don’t think I haven’t noticed the way you look at him or fuss over him or always touch him like God, you two need to get a room-”
“Shut the fuck up already!” Bakugou yelped, throwing a crisp packet at Hitoshi’s head that had the latter snickering. “The heck do you even want?!”
“Okay, okay, I’m serious, I just...the guy I wanna approach. He’s kind of, he gives me a similar kind of vibe to Kirishima’s, like...sunshine? You know?”
“Alright,” Bakugou hummed, nodding as he leant forward and sipped his drink pensively. “So you wanna play in the opposites attract game too, huh?”
“Really. I’m the definition of night and he shines like he’s meant to be singing with larks.”
“Stop being so pseudo-deep, it’s gross...maybe I feel you, though. But there’s not much you can do. Me and Eijirou didn’t really do anything special yet we ended up liking each other, just by being around each other and gettin’ along. All I can say is interact with the guy, show your interest.”
“How...how do I interact with him?”
“Huh? Do you two even talk?!”
The way Hitoshi embarrassedly rubbed his nape was answer enough, and he yelled when Bakugou docked his head, hard. “You moron, how the fuck can you even like someone you’re not close to?! I don’t get people like that.”
“I talked to him twice, I did! It’s just been a while and I don’t know what to do and I just...I like how he looks. I like his atmosphere. I like his expressions. You know? Those kinds of things. I just like him.”
Bakugou retched and Hitoshi kicked him under the table.
“You’ve got it bad and it’s gross but I ain’t changing my answer. Talk.”
“Just go up to the guy, initiate something, how else?!”
“Ugh, that’s not helpful, I don’t know if I-”
“Oi.” Bakugou’s hand was on Hitoshi’s shoulder all of a sudden, and he looked up to see Bakugou’s almost unreadable, unwavering gaze. “I get it. Interaction not being your strong point, I fucking get it. You didn’t get into this friend group on your own terms, you don’t usually initiate stuff, but just think. Think about how much you’re agonising over something so small, something that can be fixed in no time. And even if you think ‘it doesn’t matter I don’t even like him that much, we barely know each other’, if you’re sitting here so much thinking about liking him then it’s more than worth it to just damn well go for it.”
And Hitoshi wanted to listen to him. Fuck, Hitoshi wanted to listen to him more than anything and the words were already starting to pump adrenaline through his veins but he already knew something was going to be stopping him, from his track record. Yet still, he looked up at Bakugou’s anticipating face.
“You know who it is, don’t you?”
Bakugou raised his eyebrows, taking a swig of his drink before shaking his head. “Don’t know what you’re talking about. Could be any old dumb broccoli nerd, I ain’t got a clue.”
“You’re really not like the others, huh. They haven’t even had an inkling.”
“Mhm. That’s why, it’s kinda nice that you’re a part of us now,” Bakugou said, tapping Hitoshi’s slumped head with the tip of the bottle. “You’re someone I get. ‘N that means I’m here for you. I ain’t letting you be an idiot about this.”
“I don’t think I’ve told you how much I appreciate you.”
“And please fucking don’t that shit is gross to hear out your mouth.”
Hitoshi laughed while Bakugou smiled behind his drink, downing some more. But then Hitoshi’s face fell a little, just suddenly, and his smile was smaller and a touch sadder as he looked at the table, squishing his cheeks more against his arms. “I just don’t think I’m gonna go for it just, just because I don’t think there’s any chance we’re compatible. I’m just a little enchanted by how cute he is, that’s all. It doesn’t mean much. I’ll forget about it soon.”
“And is you coming to all our roller skating outings just to ogle him ‘you trying to forget about it’?” Bakugou asked curtly, grinning when Hitoshi hid in his arms. “Ugh. Fucking hate that it’s him that you had to fall for. I’ll take it, though. Just, take it easy then. Go for him if you want, but I’m not forcing you, just want you to stop moping. But I’ll tell you a secret. The way to a sunshine’s heart is letting them know as clearly as you can, no cutting corners and no fancy analogies or whatnot, just how much they shine to you.”
Hitoshi felt himself start to melt at that. “How often do you tell Kirishima he shines?”
Bakugou took a last swig, finishing the bottle that he slammed down onto the table as he wiped his mouth like the dramatic kid he was, but for him, it worked.
“Every fucking day.”
It wasn’t long before the others joined them and they had to go find a bigger table. Apparently Bakugou had left because he’d ‘hurt his leg’ but the wink the guy sent Hitoshi had him stifling a smile. He looked around and realised with a slightly heavy heart that he couldn’t see Deku anymore, though that was probably for the best. Even with Bakugou’s amazing pep-talk, it had driven it home even more that he’d never be able to man up and go for it. He just knew Deku wasn’t supposed to be his, a fairy while Hitoshi was more like the monster under the bed.
It was when they were leaving that Hitoshi’s eyes caught onto something. Deku was on the rink. It was the first time Hitoshi had seen him on the rink, but here he was holding the hands of two kids, skating slowly with them, all laughter and smiles and as Hitoshi looked closer, he realised that Deku was probably teaching them how to skate, or at least helping them. Suddenly he felt an ache in his chest so strong that for a moment he thought he was about to die.
And he’d called Bakugou dramatic.
“Hey, Shin,” a warm voice said as a hand took hold of his, and he turned to see Ashido looking at him in concern. “You okay? The others are all outside already.”
“A-Ah, right. Sorry.”
“Don’t be silly it’s fine, hey, get some rest tonight, okay?”
“I’ll try, I’ll try.” That was what he always said, and he swore he wanted to. Even to just not feel guilty that he couldn’t rest when these golden-hearted people always told him to.
Then they were off, as his familiar friends crowded him with their contagious bubbliness, and everything felt okay.
That was until Hitoshi realised with a start that he’d left his phone at the rink.
“Holy-” He slapped a hand over his mouth to refrain from swearing in front of Eri who was looking at him in worry. He’d just been hanging out with her and then he’d wanted his phone to show her some pictures of the event at the university today that he’d seen in passing, but after absolutely turning his bag and his room upside down, he knew it for sure. His phone wasn’t here.
“It’s either on the train or at the rink, and I don’t know which one is more terrifying?” Hitoshi panicked as he pressed his hands into the kitchen counter, knuckles turning white as he grabbed hard and his father sighed, patting his back.
“Stop worrying, Hitoshi, we’ll get it back in no time. Just- where’s Hizashi, I swear to-”
“WAIT, what time is it?” Hitoshi suddenly asked, bringing his head up as he stared at his father with wide eyes who blinked at him, and then there was a loud call of “NINE FIFTY~” from the other side of the house. And now Hitoshi was officially ready to die.
“The rink. Closes. In ten minutes,” Hitoshi said, slowly and calmly as he raised his head to make eye-contact with his concerned father. Then he was bolting out of the room faster than lightning.
“HEY, WHAT ARE YOU PLANNING TO-”
“Don’t stop me, I need my phone! It’s got my schedules and way too many of my notes on there!”
“Then at least let me drive-”
“It’s like ten minutes away! You don’t need to bother, I’m nineteen, remember?!”
His father closed his eyes, pinching the bridge of his nose before waving a hand. “Fine. Just don’t stop running, there’ll be less of a chance you’ll get ambushed that way. HIZASHI GET DOWN HERE AND MAKE ME A FUCKING COFFEE WHILE WE WORRY FOR OUR SON’S LIFE.”
“ON IT, SHO- WAIT WHAT?!”
“Love you, Dad, I’ll- I’ll be right back, I swear,” Hitoshi said gratefully as he grabbed his jacket, waving as he ran out and felt a bit bad by the way his father sighed, shaking his head, but by now he sure knew the way to the rink like the back of his hand and he followed his father’s advice, not stopping his run the entire time until he finally got to the entrance and burst through the door that...that he didn’t slam into and fall because it was open.
FUCK YES, his brain yelled as he looked around trying to find the clock before slowly his adrenaline started easing as he realised that almost all the lights in the place were off, and there was only a few on around the rink, and there was music playing but it was much, much softer than usual. He panted shallowly as he made his way forward, trying to look for the clock but the closer he got, he heard the now familiar sound of skates against a closely polished surface. That was when his eyes found the massive clock, and he could just about make out that it said ten minutes past ten.
He moved closer to the rink because it wasn’t like his eyesight was anything to applaud at, and the first thing he made out was green. Instantly, his brain knew who it was then but he still tried to get a better look, still in the darkness as only the rink was lit up, and his heart stuttered inside his chest.
Deku looked incredible.
He’d shed his work uniform shirt for a tank-top that had probably been underneath, a dark one that perfectly showed off all the incredible muscles that Hitoshi had never known he had, but now he was falling even more. His eyes were closed as he skated so effortlessly, slowly and glidingly to the chill music that was coming out of a stereo perched on the edge of the rink, and Hitoshi watched him crouch down as he skated to brush his fingertips across the rink floor.
And it made more sense than ever that Hitoshi was in the darkness as Deku stood in the only illuminated place in the entire building.
But Hitoshi must’ve got a little too close to the light, because when Deku was straightening up again and skating in his direction, his green eyes widened as he started to skate over faster. “Oh my goodness! Hey!”
For a dumb moment Hitoshi really looked behind and around him to see who Deku could be talking to, before his head whipped back when Deku hit the side, holding onto the edge with his face gleaming with sweat and vibrance, his eyes alight. Hitoshi couldn’t breathe for a second.
“S-Sorry, um...I thought...doesn’t this place close at ten?”
“Yeah it does! Ah but if I’m the one locking up then that doesn’t mean I have to leave at ten,” Deku said with a grin and Hitoshi nodded, acknowledging that that was true. “So, what brings you here at this time then? Anything wrong?”
“Oh, I left my phone here-”
“YES! YES YOU DID!” Deku suddenly yelled before slapping a hand over his mouth as Hitoshi blinked in amazement. “A-Ah sorry, I just - one of my co-workers found it and I recognised it, so I’ve put it into one of the shoe lockers to keep safe, I’ll go get it for you-”
“Oh no, no, it’s fine, you look like you have so much fun when you can skate, please, uh, finish. I can wait.”
“Why don’t you join me?”
Hitoshi was sure he hadn’t heard that right. “Huh?”
“You’ve been coming here a lot lately, right? I see you quite a bit, anyway,” Deku said with a smile that was equal parts shy and teasing. “But I’ve never seen you skate. Have you ever been on the rink?”
“I...uh, no, I’ve- I’ve never tried.”
“Really? Hey, then would you let me teach you for a while? Just a little?” Deku asked, raising a hand with two fingers almost touching to show just how ‘little’ he meant and Hitoshi bit his lip, really wanting to decline but honestly, he wasn’t sure if he’d ever be able to say no to this guy.
And the way Deku’s face lit up was more than worth it.
“Come on, come on! I’ll show you where your phone is while we’re at it,” Deku said excitedly as he came off the rink and took hold of Hitoshi’s wrist which had him instantly burning red, but he couldn’t do much about it as Deku started dragging him to the reception counter, and Hitoshi wondered how the hell he was able to walk so fast on normal...land?...with those skates on. And in no time, Hitoshi was on the edge of the rink still very badly hiding his blush when Deku was on one knee in front of him, putting his skates on for him and it seemed like such a dream that he almost wanted to treat it like one. Almost just wanted to pull Deku up by the collar and kiss him silly, for hours. But deep down he knew this wasn’t a dream, and he had anxious fathers waiting for him at home.
“We’ve gotta be quick, my dad will kill me if I take too long.”
Deku pouted in disappointment before grinning immediately when Hitoshi blushed even harder. “I’m joking, I’m not sad, it’s fine! Well, a little sad, but it’s cool, I promise. Just a short while. Give me your hands?”
Hitoshi almost short-circuited after a small fantasy video played in his mind of their hands together, but he knew he had to so he robotically reached out and almost let out an embarrassing noise when Deku took hold of them. And his hands were stronger than Hitoshi had expected, something he could tell more-so now than when one had been holding his wrist. Strong, tough, and when he looked he could see a large scar over the back of one. His fingers absently brushed over them, and his eyes managed to miss the way Deku flushed slightly.
“Oh...that’s from a time in roller derby, but it’s okay now-”
“You do derby? You’re incredible.”
“Nah, not really. You’re the one who does martial arts,” Deku said and Hitoshi froze, looking up and he was caught up in Deku blinking nervously. “Uh...I mean! Not that I’ve seen much, but I’ve seen videos on Kacchan’s instagram of them. You’re so good.”
“I’ve just been taught all I know by my dad, it’s not much,” Hitoshi muttered, but Deku shook his head, squeezing Hitoshi’s hands tighter.
“No, it’s a lot. You have to be hella hardworking to be that good.”
Hitoshi smiled, heart warming. “You too. I’m sure you’re a derby king.”
They shared a smile for a second more before Deku was pulling him up from the bench, laughing when Hitoshi yelped and almost fell over right from the start and he wasn’t even on the rink yet. “Uhhh I don’t think this is going to go well?!”
“No, no, trust me!” Deku giggled as he pulled Hitoshi forward and he winced, grimacing as he shuffled forward and tried not to let Deku’s small words of praise get to him or he might pass out.
“A-Are we on the rink yet?”
“Not yet but almost- hey, don’t close your eyes, that’s dangerous!”
“Ugh, but…” Hitoshi pursed his lips but opened his eyes and moved forwards more, watching Deku’s face instead of anything else which was kind and supporting and beautiful and freckled, and he felt his heartbeat calming down as he was reminded that he was simply a boy in puppy love and his crush was there for him.
“And you’re on!”
And then his heartbeat increased so rapidly that he almost collapsed on the spot.
“WOAH WOAH, hold on, hold on!” Deku yelled as Hitoshi was instantly flapping about, arms letting go but Deku grabbed onto them and pulled so Hitoshi was even closer, and he was stammering out nonsense for a moment as he looked down at Deku who was only inches away. Deku smiled at him, a smile so incredibly fond and Hitoshi wondered, how could he be so fond of someone he didn’t even know? “Just breathe, alright? I got you.”
“You gonna treat me like the kids you help?” Hitoshi laughed even though he was inwardly bricking it and Deku shook his head, slowly pulling Hitoshi along.
“You’re a loooot taller than they are. Tall people are annoying.”
“Aw, I’m annoying?”
“No, no I- I didn’t mean that-”
“I can be annoying. Catch me using you as an armrest once we’re off this rink,” Hitoshi smirked and Deku groaned, “I hate that,” as they picked up speed. “Kacchan does that all the time, I just wanna punch him!”
“Do it, no-one’s stopping you.”
“He’d beat me up so bad, though.”
“From your muscles I feel like you might be able to do even more damage.”
“That’s...o-oh,” Deku said in a small voice, looking away and Hitoshi could see that his ears were an angry red and it made him bite back a raging smile. Cute, kind, glowing, muscular, he needed to find out what this boy wasn’t. And Hitoshi was so lost in him that he didn’t focus on his footing, which he should be focusing on now more than ever, and before he knew it his feet were going haywire as he skidded and yelled out, hands a mixture of trying to wave about and also clutch onto Deku harder than ever and it really didn’t work. Deku turned to look at him, eyes widenining as he called out and tried to catch Hitoshi but one minute they were upright and yelling, and two crashes later, one into a warm body and the other onto a cold hard surface, they were horizontal and whining.
“Oh God,” Hitoshi groaned as he raised a hand to rub his head but before he knew it the body underneath him shifted, and two hands were going around his head and a concerned sweet face moved so close that Hitoshi was almost yelling again.
“Oh gosh, are you okay? I’m so sorry! I said I’d look after you and I just- gah, I’m awful, please just hit me or something!” Deku wailed as his hands soothed over Hitoshi’s head, rubbing it gently where it had met the ground and Hitoshi watched him in slight awe, moving just a little so he had his arms either side of Deku, pushing up to hover over him a bit more instead of only lying on him. And Deku was too fussed with patting Hitoshi’s body gently to make sure he was alright, until Hitoshi took hold of one of his wrists to stop him.
“Hey. It’s alright, and you probably got more hurt than me, you’re the one under than me.”
“It’s okay, I know how to cushion my falls,” Deku said quickly as he tried to go back to catering to Hitoshi but Hitoshi took hold of his hands, not quite sure what would happen if he let them go on him again. He wasn’t willing to combust anytime soon.
“I’m fine. Promise,” Hitoshi said softly as he held onto Deku’s hands gently with just one of his, and watched the guy’s face paint pink as he nodded, swallowing.
“Stop apologising. This was all my fault, it’s alright. Just honestly tell me if you’re hurt.”
“Nope, not at all! A bit sore but that’ll go in no time.”
Hitoshi wished he could kiss the soreness away but the thought had him almost choking on air.
“So. You’re on top of me,” Deku laughed nervously and Hitoshi grinned, looking down shyly.
“Yeah. You’re under me.”
“That’s quite a dilemma.”
“Mhm. But I’m okay with it.”
“Me too,” Deku said quickly, a little too quickly and he was flaring up in embarrassment as he groaned, trying to cover his face but Hitoshi didn’t let him have his hands back as he laughed, his brain hammering at him to acknowledge that this was a sign of his attraction and crush being requited, but all he could think about was how cute this mess of a beautiful guy was with his wild hair and big eyes and burst of freckles and crazy muscles, all things Hitoshi was in love with.
And as he stared, he was reminded of Bakugou’s words.
The way to a sunshine’s heart is letting them know as clearly as you can, no cutting corners and no fancy analogies or whatnot, just how much they shine to you.
“Hey,” Hitoshi said, gulping slightly as he tried to clear his throat, and Deku who was still quite flushed looked up at him in anticipation behind his arm covering his face. “I just want you to know, in case I never get a chance to tell you, that you...glow.”
Deku’s eyes grew wide. “What?”
“I don’t know what it is, or how you do it, or if it’s just to me but I’m sure it’s not because it’s just so clear how much you...shine? I’m sorry if it’s weird I just- you’re so bright. You smile with all your heart and you’re friendly and sweet and you exude this aura that I bet makes everyone in a five metre radius just, I don’t know, feel soft and gooey. Like eating a freshly baked cookie on a nice day. Though that’s weird, ‘cause you probably wouldn’t be outside if it was freshly bak- anyway, I just need you to know that that- that’s what I think. About, uh, you. You’re glowy. You shine.”
And of course after a rare word vomit like that, Hitoshi would absolutely want to run away and hide under his bed forever, but he didn’t have time to because arms were going around his shoulders and Deku was saying breathlessly, “That’s the sweetest thing anyone’s ever said to me.”
“You...really?” Hitoshi asked in wonder and Deku nodded adamantly, smiling once again so brightly to back up Hitoshi’s words even more.
“I’ve always been sure I’m so plain and you saying something like that, it- ah, be still my heart,” Deku giggled as he pulled back one arm to take one of Hitoshi’s hands in his so he could press it against his chest. “Do you feel that? It’s beating so hard!”
“O-Oh, I don’t feel it but, uh, I believe you,” Hitoshi said quickly, not sure he’d even succeed if he tried to hide how flustered he was, and Deku’s laugh was the soundtrack to his lovesickness as his arm pulled Hitoshi down more, making his breath hitch. And something in him made him just keep going. Slowly, but he couldn’t stop, even when Deku’s eyes grew bigger and his own throat grew dry, but he was centimetres away until a hand was pushing gently against his lips.
“I want to kiss you too,” Deku breathed out, red and wincing with such bashfulness as his hand shook against Hitoshi’s lips. “But, uh...maybe I should get your name first?”
“Oh my fucking God you don’t know my name,” Hitoshi deadpanned in amazement and Deku nodded frantically, and for a moment Hitoshi just wanted to sit there and laugh, for hours . “God, I’m such a fucking idiot, I- Hitoshi. I mean- Shinso! Agh, it’s Hitoshi Shinso, there we go…”
“You can call me whatever.”
“Really? You wouldn’t mind Hitoshi straight off the bat?”
“Come on, I want to kiss you into the ground, I wouldn’t mind anything,” Hitoshi sighed and Deku flushed tenfold but burst into laughter, pulling his hand back so he could wrap his arms around Hitoshi again, tighter.
“You can do that now.”
“Mhm. We’ve got a ground,” Deku said, tilting his head towards the rink but he was yelping when Hitoshi didn’t even take a second to dive down and press their lips together, reaching behind him so he could take hold of one of Deku’s hands, tight as he pressed it into the floor beside them.
“God, you weren’t joking,” Deku breathed once Hitoshi moved away and kissed the back of Deku’s hand, just to live his dream of kissing this boy absolutely everywhere a bit more but he could wait for that. “Ugh, now, now...how am I supposed to stop wanting to kiss you?”
“Let’s kiss into morning. Fuck my parents,” Hitoshi said very seriously as he dramatically leant in again and Deku laughed against his lips, his free hand pulling back to curl against Hitoshi’s cheek then thread into his hair, bunching it gently.
“Wait, wait, I need to lock up!”
“Lock up then come back we can have this whole place to ourselves-”
And gosh, Hitoshi knew that was reprimanding but warmth still filled him, and he leant in again, just leaving a lingering peck this time and when the kiss broke, the way Deku was looking at him with his soft brushed pink gaze had him even less willing to leave, but he knew he had to. “Help me get off this rink, then.”
Deku smiled, kissing Hitoshi’s cheek which had his heart sighing. “Let’s go.”
And when they were finally out of the building, with Hitoshi’s phone safely in his pocket, Hitoshi watched the top of Deku’s head for a second as the guy locked up. Then he managed to blurt out, “I really did want to talk to you. Every time. I just didn’t know how.”
He blinked at the small laugh he got in return, and then Deku was turning around, smiling at him empathetically. “Me too. But it’s okay.”
There was a loud click, and then Deku was turning around and taking hold of Hitoshi’s hand. “We’ve got each other now.”
Hitoshi was pretty sure he was going to melt into a puddle if this got any cheesier and lovey-dovey, so he just marched forward, blatantly hiding his blush from Deku who laughed at him, trying to get a look at his face and Hitoshi tried to keep him away.
But it didn’t matter, because the kiss they shared before they parted ways at Hitoshi’s house was enough to tip over his sweetness meter as the instant he got behind the door, he was slumping down it and hiding his face in his hands.
“HITOSHI,” a thunderous voice called but Hitoshi couldn’t even bring himself to care, how could he? He just looked up in a dreamlike state at his dads who looked down at him in bewilderment.
“Hitoshi? Did...did you get your phone?”
“Yeah,” Hitoshi nodded, fishing in his pocket so he could hold it up. “And a boyfriend. Sorry. That’s why it took so long. Won’t happen again.”
There was a moment of silence that Hitoshi relished in before the house was exploding, and Hitoshi was running up the stairs with two yelling grown men hot on his tail, and he didn’t know if this was the time to feel so happy but there was so much joy in him that it was ready to make him explode as he let out a laugh that seemed to make his parents even angrier.
“Toshi?” a small sleepy voice called out and Hitoshi immediatly scooped Eri up into his arms and burst into her room, locking the door before he grinned at the girl despite the banging behind him. Eri rubbed her eyes, but smiled at him. “Toshi!”
“Guess what, Eri, guess what?”
“The fairy likes me,” Hitoshi said, beaming bigger than he was pretty sure he ever had. “And I think he’s my boyfriend now.”
Eri gasped, reaching out and Hitoshi brought her closer so she could hug his head. “MY BROTHER’S DATING A FAIRY! THAT MEANS I’M GOING TO BE RELATED TO A FAIRY! AND HE’LL MAKE ME ALL THE BUTTERMILK AND SING ME FAIRY SONGS!”
Well, Hitoshi didn’t know about that but he still nuzzled Eri and listened animatedly to her little fairy fantasies, and eventually he opened the door to his parents who both bombarded him with questions that he could barely answer, because he didn’t really know much other than this sunshine boy made his heart beat to infinity. But he was ready to find out, to hell if he wasn’t ready to find out everything.
Seems he wasn’t meant to stay in the dark after all.
- Hey Eyebags. Deku just tweeted some lovesick shit. You finally manned up didn’t you
i mean it was mostly a coincidence but yeah. we got there -
- Fuckin finally. Tell him to treat you well or I’ll finally deck him off this universe
mhm won’t do won’t do -
- Fuck off
i followed your advice by the way. told him he shined. it worked so well -
- Barf but I told you so
- Proud of you Mr I don’t think we’re compatible because I’m a big scaredy-cat baby
wow you at night is a very ruthless toddler -
- SHUT UP
- I’m waitin for a call from Eijirou
- He’s pullin an all-nighter for a dumb test and he always calls me at least once during them so it’s better to be awake and not be cranky as hell to be woken up
damn thats true love -
- Fuck yeah it is
- Gotta cultivate sunshine, you know
you’re such a sap when you’re in love -
- I fucking am I hate it so much like half the time I want to tell MYSELF to get a room
- I ain’t regrettin it though. I love him and I want the world to know that I’m with this fuckin bright monstrosity, that’s MY guy
huh. i think im gonna be coming to you for a lot of tips from now on -
- Come at me dude been datin Ei for a grossly long four years now ew
- And honestly it hasn’t been easy. Been a few rough patches here and there. His sunshine clashing with my inevitable nightshade you know
- But honestly just as long as you keep lovin it should be fine. But I’m here if you need
thanks man -
- Also don’t forget to close the blinds sometimes. Too much sun can fuckin BURN
HAHHD DUDE -
- Also Deku is just like gross inside and out blegh take many many breaks from him
- Be happy, idiot
will do -
night man. to sunshines -
- Fuck no I ain’t toastin to fuckin Deku
THIS ISN’T ABOUT DEKU -
- EVERYTHINGS GOING TO BE ABOUT DEKU WITH YOU NOW IM NOT HERE FOR IT
BAKUGOU BUT YOU WERE THE ONE WHO SAID -
OI BAKUGOU DID YOU LEAVE -
O I -
OKAY FINE. just, thank you. ill make the announcement to the others tomorrow if you make fun of me ill kill you -
- Pffffffffft like you could kill me
BAKUGOU I SWEAR TO GOD -
- Go to sleep loser
- To our sunshines.