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late nights with you

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His thumb mashes another button, spamming the same move for his character. Blades of wind shoot out from his weapon and take out the swarm of enemies awaiting him at the next checkpoint. Tomura presses forward to collect their item drops, but it’s nothing but common monster loot again. 

In the lounge, the A/C runs with a hum nearly lost in the noise coming from the television speakers. The cool air ruffles his hair and draws him further into the comfort of the sofa, feet buried into the cushions. The blanket he has pulled over his shoulders does next to nothing in providing warmth, the tattered ends worn and lacking any softness he might have craved in the moment. 

He doesn’t really mind. There is actual warmth pressed into his left side from the tiny space remaining on the sofa, slowly seeping in through the fabric of his hoodie. 

Dabi is always warm. Right now his temperature is just at that right degree of fuzzy, inviting in a way Tomura is sure must be criminal. He doesn’t even have to try to conserve the heat — in the chill of the bar, he radiates coziness. 

Tomura hadn’t leant into him. Not really. He’d been too concerned with their downtime, booting up one of his favorite games to finally relax for once. The two of them had spent the last few hours going over mission details for their next outing, and eventually, it had gotten late. They’d decided to stop for the night, but Tomura’s fingers were itching for something, so he’d picked up a controller.

He hadn’t expected Dabi to stay.

It wasn’t that strange in theory. Some of the League liked to crash at the bar from time to time. Tomura had found it bothersome the first few times, but they honestly weren’t awful company once you got used to them. Toga was the most frequent resident, around at least three days a week. He’d eventually learned from Kurogiri that she didn’t really have a place to stay, which wasn’t so surprising considering their career choice. 

Still, upon hearing that, Tomura had made a point to bring up the fact that they had a spare room during one of the meetings. It wasn’t like they were using it and he’d much rather his comrades have a safe place to stay instead of dwelling in uncertainty.

Magne was a recurring visitor as a result, staying over and keeping Toga occupied with their girls’ nights. From next door, Tomura could sometimes hear their squeals through his headset, but strangely, the noise was a relief rather than an annoyance.

Unsurprisingly, Compress had turned down his offer. He claimed to have other arrangements, though when asked, he wouldn’t elaborate. Tomura didn’t really mind that either. Secrecy was something he was becoming quite comfortable with when it came to his League — he could deal with being out of the loop, as long as it wasn't detrimental to their operation.

He had received an odd look in response from Spinner. Tomura had taken it in stride, not breaking eye contact until Spinner looked away first and muttered, almost shyly, that he would be staying somewhere else, too. 

Twice, he knew, was staying in some trashy motel not too far off from the hideout. It was a tiny place, but he’d more often than not offer it up to any takers if they needed somewhere to sleep for the night. Dabi was a pretty common candidate.

Weirdly, the two of them had grown ridiculously close over the last few months. All of the League was alarmingly tight-knit, cozy in a way Tomura hadn’t really thought possible, but Dabi and Twice frequently shared smoke breaks and took on missions together despite being the most unlikely duo.

So it was strange that Dabi hadn’t taken up his offer tonight and instead decided to stick around. It couldn’t be that it was late — he’d built up a habit of leaving regardless of the hour, uncaring of the dangers of the night. As a villain he’d only really have to worry about the actions of other villains, and Tomura knew for a fact that Dabi could handle himself.

But he’d curled up on the sofa with him. The papers they’d gone over together were still scattered on the table, messily organized by Tomura’s own hand. Their drinks were cold. Dabi was watching him play one of his comfort games, and Tomura was just a tad nervous by the break in routine.

He wanted to figure out what made this night different, if Dabi was somehow up to something without him realizing it. 

It made it difficult to focus on the screen. He narrowly avoids dying to a couple of low-ranked enemies, too busy trying to peek at the man beside him.

Dabi’s been awfully quiet, too. Tomura has grown too used to his commentary to not feel unsettled by the lack of it, especially when it’s just the two of them now. It feels more private, and he isn’t sure if he likes it or not.

He had been more talkative at first, pestering Tomura with all kinds of newbie questions that any real gamer would know the answer to off the top of his head. It wasn't too annoying to answer. Tomura liked talking about video games and to see Dabi actually show interest in them was… 

It made him feel good, excited almost. He’d spent the first hour playing just indulging his queries and showing off his world. Then as things began to die down, they ended up as they are now: quiet, with Tomura having struggled to complete a quest in his curiosity.

He’s in the middle of skipping through dialogue with a generic NPC. His reward is a healing item he doesn’t really care for, but supposes could be useful — really, he’d done the quest to try to get a total completion rate on the game more than collect any mediocre rewards. He gets a heartfelt thanks that sends his character off, toggling the missions he has remaining to see what’s next. He selects one ranked more appropriately for his character and starts to pull up the map to view the marker when it happens.

There’s a weight on his shoulder that definitely wasn’t there before. It grows heavier until it just sits there and something hot hits the side of his neck, exposed only because he had pulled his hair up to get it out of his face.

Tomura goes completely still. He isn’t sure if he’s even breathing at first. 

Carefully, he tilts his head to look to his left. Dabi is resting his head on his shoulder, pressed snug against his side. His mouth is open just the slightest, soft breaths escaping him every few seconds. He looks relaxed, all steel drained away from his expression. The furrow that usually lingers in his brow has been lost in this moment, wiped away for something sweeter.

Dabi is asleep on his shoulder.

Tomura stares a few minutes longer in an attempt to fully process this, before he turns back to the television screen. His character is doing his idle animation, completely unfazed by this situation. Tomura doesn’t try to start his next quest just yet. 

Even without looking at him, he’s everywhere. Tomura thought he was warm before, but it’s nothing compared to this feeling.

With the game soundtrack playing softly in the background, it feels even more surreal. The bar lounge is bathed in blue light from the screen, reflecting off of the glass coffee table they’d been working at together. His eyes are starting to sting from staring at his game too long. 

Tomura has had nights like this before where he’s gotten too lost in the moment, too lost in gameplay and bingeing on any food he kept close by. He's shut himself in his room to complete an entire game in one night before, forgetting the world outside of it until Kurogiri warps in to check in on him.

He’s never really had a moment like this with someone else, though, and certainly no one like Dabi at that.

He clutches at the controller in his hands and startles when the weight on his shoulder adjusts. Tomura drops it and it clatters to the floor.

“Ah,” he says quietly. The shifting on his shoulder stops. He tenses again, wondering if Dabi’s awake now. It takes a silent pep talk to convince him to look over at him again, and he is relieved to see Dabi still asleep. 

Tomura’s noticed how shitty his sleep schedule seems to be, after all. Anyone that can keep up with him with ease has to be getting a poor amount of sleep.

Dabi could stand to look after himself better. They all could, actually, but with the others Tomura’s found they can be easily encouraged to do better. Dabi has a tendency to do the opposite of what he’s told, running himself into the ground purely out of spite.

If only Tomura could convince him to —

Something short escapes him. Tomura pauses with his hand still raised, staring up at it like he’s not sure what he’d been about to do. 

It sounds again. Is he… snoring?

Tomura can barely hear it with how quick and low the noise is. Dabi’s so quiet when he’s sleeping. He wonders if he’s having a good dream. He’s sleeping peacefully enough to warrant one.

He swallows hard.

So very peacefully, in fact, that Tomura feels drawn in by the sight. Is it bad to stare? Probably. Dabi would call him a creep for it surely, but it’s hard not to look at how his hair is messed up so stupidly across his forehead, stray bits curled up at the ends. He remembers now. He was going to touch it, tempted to see how it curled around his fingers.

He doesn’t, though — gets lost instead in the way his nose twitches cutely like he’s annoyed by something in-dream. If Dabi was awake, he’d probably be rolling his eyes too, that familiar drawl in his voice. 

Total heat. 

Tomura inhales sharply and looks away. He’s not really tired yet, could probably stand to stay up another two hours and really make some progress on his game. 

When he grabs his controller again and starts up the next quest, he tries hard not to move too much. The sound is lowered to an acceptable volume, his blanket shifted so it can halfway cover the man beside him. 

Later, in the early hours of the morning, Kurogiri and Compress stumble upon the two cuddled close and still sleeping, the game console running on rest mode.