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02 | DARE.

Katsuki’s eyelids were heavy with the boredom-induced haze that had fallen over him during his last class, shuffling out of the class with a yawn wide enough that it made his jaw pop with a quick, slight pinch.

“Ow, fuck,” he complained under his breath in a quiet hiss, rubbing at his sore jaw in an attempt to soothe it with his fingers. He raised his arms taut over his head, more than eager to stretch out the limbs that had gone stiff from sitting still in the uncomfortable-ass chairs that filled the lecture halls and would probably contribute to early back problems in the students subjected to the misfortune of them.

“Where’s Kat?” Katsuki glanced up with sharp, annoyed eyes at the sound of the nickname that he’d told countless people, countless times, not to call him—it was Denki’s voice, though, and Denki never listened to anything he said. His red eyes searched the sea of students before he picked out a tall head of pink bobbing towards him.

“He’s right there. Your short ass just can’t see him over everyone else,” Mina’s voice teased as she finally broke free of the crowd, and sure enough, she was followed by the small omega that was now giving her an unthreatening glare before shooting back, “I’d rather be short; you look like a tree from the Lorax.”

Katsuki huffed a light laugh at this as Mina’s expression fell into a dumbfounded one, startled by the comparison as Denki flounced over the rest of the way to Katsuki, the pink-haired girl trailing behind him and now thoughtfully tugging a tuft of soft pink hair from the front of her head, nearly going cross-eyed as she tried to stare at it.

Do I look like a tree from the Lorax?” She muttered under her breath, her eyes looking as though she was trying to figure out rocket silence, and Katsuki couldn’t help snickering at this. Mina snapped out of her mild crisis at this, flashing the omega a bright smile.

“Hey, Kitty Kat,” she greeted cheerfully, not giving Katsuki a chance to dodge as he wanted to before quickly pulling him into a hug, ignoring all his grumbling and squirming as she affectionately nuzzled her cheek against the top of his head. Katsuki growled lowly at this, though irritatingly enough his instincts purred happily at the familiar sweet, albeit slightly bitter scent of dark chocolate that bombarded him.

As annoying as he found Mina, his instincts quite liked the alpha, even more so the fact that she was so obnoxiously affectionate.

Nonetheless, Katsuki didn’t let it go on for too long and managed to squeeze his way out of her grip, bristling slightly at her amused laugh as he smoothed down his clothes and fixed the hair that she’d rustled.

“You’re fucking annoying,” he told her in lieu of a greeting, “and don’t call me that.”

“Mhm,” she hummed noncommittally, and Katsuki knew that she wasn’t listening even in the slightest—Denki knew too, only watching the pair’s back and forth with mild amusement. “Anyway,” she drawled, giving Katsuki’s attire a pointed look, “Isn’t that my hoodie? I thought I’d been missing a couple...” She trailed off thoughtfully, clearly wondering if it had been her imagination.

Katsuki raised an eyebrow, looking down at himself. Indeed, the hoodie he wore was several sizes too big for himself and smelled distinctly of Mina’s scent, not of his own.

“You obviously weren’t looking for it when you left it at my dorm, dumbass,” he snarked, starting off in the direction that they were headed without checking to make sure the pair was following him.

“Eh? The last time I wore that was weeks ago, though?” Katsuki glanced over with a nonplussed look, as though to say, “And? What about it?”

“So I’ve had it for a few weeks, obviously. Your point?” Mina pouted at him, voice whiny as she replied, “I was looking for it this morning; I thought I lost it or something.”

Katsuki blinked at her lazily before shrugging, looking ahead again.

“Consider it a favor; it looks better on me anyway.” He heard Denki’s snicker beside him, mumbling something about how shameless Katsuki was, before he turned to mockingly console Mina.

“Chin up, Mina, it’s just a natural part of being the designated alpha friend. You’ll get it back eventually.”

Mina didn’t even bother glancing at Denki before replying. “Of course, you’re only saying that because you’re also wearing one of my hoodies.” From his peripheral vision, Katsuki saw Denki mock-wince at being caught red-handed before he turned to the pink-haired girl and made a cutesy expression that Katsuki could only assume was supposed to absolve him of his hoodie theft.

Mina ignored this save for a roll of her eyes, raising her hands behind her head and interlacing her fingers in a relaxed manner as they walked. “I swear I don’t leave that many hoodies around, though. How the hell do you two even get them?” She mused aloud.

“You definitely do,” Denki disagreed. “It’s your fault for leaving them in our dorms all the time; it’s not like we purposely go to your place just to hoodie shop in your closet.”

Katsuki was pulled from his blank mind and into the conversation by the light nudge of Denki’s elbow against his arm, giving him a dubious look. “Speak for yourself.”

Denki snorted, turning to Mina. “Well, I don’t,” he corrected, “but really, you should be flattered that Katsuki likes you enough to go through the trouble of something like that.”

“Don’t go lying to her,” Katsuki grumbled under his breath, and Denki only laughed at his complaint, throwing an arm around his shoulders that Katsuki attempted to shrug off.

“Yes, I’m flattered that my friend breaks into my room to steal my hoodies,” Mina agreed in a mockingly sage tone, though it was clear she was entirely too amused by the entire situation.

Katsuki’s brow twitched in mild annoyance at this, turning to glare at Mina.

“I don’t break in; don’t make it sound like I’m some kind of robber!” Katsuki snapped irritably, whirling around to kick the girl in annoyed reprimand. Mina yelped as the kick happened to land on her butt, giving Katsuki an affronted look.

“Ow, what the hell—Well, I wasn’t wrong!” She whined, rubbing at her now-sore backside with a pout. Katsuki rolled his eyes at her dramatics, his attention turning to Denki when the omega suddenly piped up beside them.

“We should hurry up; I don’t wanna be late. Coach’ll chew me out again,” Denki muttered the last part sheepishly, not at all fond of the memory of being scolded as though by his mother the last time he’d shown up for practice late.

Katsuki and Mina smirked at this, remembering exactly why he’d been late. “Oh yeah, I forgot that you’re on thin ice already,” Katsuki commented.

“That’s what happens when you go to see your boyfriends that aren’t actually your boyfriends instead of showing up to practice on time,” Mina commented offhandedly, at which Denki stomped his foot childishly and glared at the two.

“Shut it!” He huffed, though the two remained unbothered by his threatless gaze. “And like you can talk, Mina!” He retorted, giving Mina a pointed look. Katsuki looked, mildly amused, between the now-bickering pair as they went back and forth about their silly middle school-esque crushes.

Mina sputtered at this, clearly caught off-guard, and Denki grinned. “If you wanna tease so much, when I see Ochako in practice I should tell her that you have a big fat crush on her—mmph!” The omega’s gold eyes went round in surprise as his words were cut off, staring at Mina’s unintimidating sour expression as she literally pinched his lips shut between her fingers, the slight pink tint to her mocha complexion giving away how flustered—almost shy—she truly was, a stark contrast to her constantly flirtatious nature.

Katsuki’s brow pinched in amused exasperation with the two; they were really like a pair of kids.

Fortunately, the trio arrived at the volleyball gym with some minutes to spare despite their bickering and parted ways with promises to check in again later before Mina continued on her way to dance practice.

As usual, the gym was empty when they arrived but they could already hear a commotion from the locker room, and Katsuki idly wondered what gossip he’d find himself involuntarily listening in on this time.

He followed Denki into the room, undisturbed by the familiar sweet scents of omegas and the more neutral ones of betas that swirled amiably together in the air—after all, they were all rather comfortable with each other.

They were met with cheerful greetings as they entered, which were returned with enthusiastic reciprocations from a bubbly Denki and quiet sounds of acknowledgment from Katsuki as he immediately made a beeline for his locker and started to change his clothes, first undoing the drawstring of his sweats as he listened halfheartedly to the idle conversation occurring.

Right after he’d gotten into his shorts and pulled off his hoodie and shirt, he was damn near startled out of his skin when all of a sudden there was a body behind him, the familiar scent of citrus hitting him all at once as the omega with no sense of personal space seemed to suddenly appear behind him, his dainty fingers tapping along his waist.

“Kat, do you have a hair tie? I snapped mine,” he sighed, and Katsuki could practically hear the pout in his voice as the blond rested his chin on Katsuki’s shoulder, soft hair tickling the side of his face.

“Don’t you have spares?” Katsuki grumbled irritably, even as he looked in his bag for something Denki could use.

“I thought so, but I guess not,” Denki replied lightly, beaming at Katsuki when he procured a clip from his bag. “That’s the best you’re gonna get,” Katsuki told him, tossing the clip to him. Katsuki’s hair wasn’t long enough for there to be a need to carry hair ties around; he only clipped his fringe if it really started getting annoying.

“Thanks!” He chirped gratefully, carefully clipping his hair out of his face as Katsuki went back to pulling his shirt over his head.

“Oh, that reminds me!” The pair was mildly startled by Tooru's voice, alight with slight excitement, when it suddenly cut through the din of the locker room. “Have you guys seen this app?” She asked, holding out her phone, and Katsuki was unsurprised when Denki curiously ambled over to go see while he instead stayed back, focusing on shoving his bag into the locker and clipping up his own hair.

“Ooh, what is it?”

“It’s called Dare. It randomly gives you—surprise surprise—dares to complete, and if you do them you’ll supposedly get good luck, but more importantly it pays you,” she spoke the last part in a deadpan voice and there were a few laughs at her honesty.

“What kind of dares?” Katsuki heard Denki curiously ask, and he rolled his eyes at the enthusiasm in the easily excitable boy’s voice.

“Well, I got dared to serenade my boyfriend in front of our whole class earlier,” she replied, snickering quietly at the memory. “The professor was pissed, but I’m richer than I was before the dare, so...”

“Yeah,” Tsuyu piped up quietly, with amusement in her eyes as she shook her head at her classmate. “The professor came in late and saw Tooru on top of his desk singing her heart out. Somehow, Ojirou was more embarrassed than she was; he was so red.”

Tooru sighed airily at this, beaming. “I know, right? He’s so cute.”

“Aw, that’s cute,” Ochako smiled sweetly before her expression turned into a more serious one, giving Tooru a pointed look. “How much did it pay you, though?”

Tooru snorted at her bluntness, amused and caught off-guard all at once. “Straight to the point, huh? Fifty dollars.”

“Eh? Fifty dollars just to flirt with your own boyfriend? Kat, we’re downloading this app,” Denki stated resolutely, his phone already in his hands as he shuffled back over to Katsuki.

We are?” Katsuki repeated, raising an eyebrow. “You do that shit; I can’t be bothered. Sounds dumb.”

Denki pouted at this, leaning against the locker as he downloaded the app and already started making an account. “Look, I know you’re spoiled rotten and you don’t need the money, but you should just try it! I’m sure pretty much everyone’s going to; it’ll be fun,” he insisted, voice imploring as he gave Katsuki his best puppy eyes. Katsuki only rolled his at this.

Katsuki opened his mouth to refuse again, but Denki seemed to realize this because he was quick to clasp his hands together pleadingly, leaning close to Katsuki until their noses were nearly touching and Katsuki was staring directly into shiny gold eyes, alarmed by their proximity.

“Pretty please? Just think about it; I think you’ll like it.” Katsuki rolled his eyes, squirming under the omega’s pleading stare.

“You’re annoying,” Katsuki huffed, averting his gaze as he felt himself growing weak under his friend’s eyes.

“That’s not a no,” Denki chirped happily; he knew Katsuki all too well.

“Tch, fuck off.”

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