As someone who had to deal with it on a daily basis, Katsuki was used to the tricky nature of fate.
He understood it better than most, an instinctual feeling that came with the magic running through his veins. It got sharper after years of following in his parents' footsteps, crafting soulmate flowers and watching through an outsider's eyes as they brought people together — or sometimes torn them apart.
And an outsider was all he'd ever been, until the day Todoroki Shouto walked into his flower shop.
Even Katsuki's keen sense couldn't warn him of the threads of fate tangling themselves around him until it was too late. By then, Todoroki had come back to the shop more times than he could count, first to buy flowers — regular ones — for his mother and then for no other apparent reason than seeing Katsuki.
At some point, insults turned into playful banter; short conversations turned into late night coffee dates, and Katsuki's heart fluttered with relief every time Todoroki returned with news that his little forget-me-not had not yet bloomed.
By the time Katsuki realized he'd been tricked, he was already in love with a man whose fate he'd crafted with his own hands.
From the bed, Katsuki could see the box that held Todoroki's soulmate flower.
It wasn't the first time he woke up in Todoroki's apartment, Todoroki's chest pressed against his back and warm breath tickling his neck. Usually, though, the box was nowhere in sight. Katsuki suspected Todoroki hid it whenever he was coming over; the unannounced nature of this particular visit was probably the reason why it still sat on full display.
Katsuki blinked, hoping it would prove to be just an illusion caused by his sleep-riddled brain.
The box remained there, glass case outlined by the soft morning light. It'd been easy to ignore it the previous night, when he'd been more preoccupied with Todoroki's mouth sucking bruises into his skin and his nails scratching lines down his back, but it was harder to do so when there was nothing to distract him. Todoroki still snored quietly behind him, fast asleep.
It wasn't like he didn't know Todoroki still had the flower. Katsuki had made the damn thing himself — even out of sight, magic called to its owner, so he didn't need to see it to tell it was somewhere close. But it'd been months since Todoroki had talked about it, just like it had been months since they'd started dating and not once had Todoroki offered the flower for Katsuki to hold.
The box seemed to taunt him from its place on the nightstand. All Katsuki had to do was stretch his arm out to reach it, open the case, and touch the flower inside it; he'd have the answer to the question he'd been asking himself during all this time.
Katsuki closed his eyes, burrowing himself further into the comfort of Todoroki's arms.
He wouldn't do it. Not as long as Todoroki didn't want him to.
Perhaps sensing his restless thoughts, Todoroki shifted and tightened his hold around Katsuki's waist. An unintelligible groan left his lips moments before he pressed a kiss to Katsuki's nape. "'Morning," he muttered.
Katsuki hummed. He didn't want to open his eyes; like this, he could focus on the warmth of Todoroki's skin and the sound of his voice. He could pretend there was no soulmate flower sitting in a box a few inches away from him.
"You're up early." Todoroki's words slurred. He was still half-asleep, fingers lazy as he traced circles on Katsuki's stomach. Katsuki had found out early in their relationship that Todoroki wasn't much of a morning person. "Everything okay?"
"Fine, you can go back to sleep."
His voice came out harsher than he intended, and Katsuki internally winced when Todoroki stilled.
"Bakugou, what's wrong?"
He supposed it was too much to ask that Todoroki wouldn't press the issue.
Katsuki turned around in a tangle of limbs, receiving a face full of Todoroki's messy bed hair in the process. He batted away the rebel strands, intending to insist that no, nothing's wrong, just leave it alone.
Instead, what he said was, "Are you still trying to find your soulmate?"
Later, Katsuki would blame the sleep that muddled his thoughts for the words that came out of his mouth. He didn't like feeling vulnerable, yet there was something about Todoroki that broke down his walls like they were made of sand, leaving him bare. Heart open and exposed, all Todoroki's for the taking.
He'd taken it a long time ago.
"What brought this on — Oh." Katsuki saw the moment Todoroki noticed the box. He flinched, pressing his lips into a thin line, and when his eyes fell back on Katsuki there was the faintest hint of worry in them. "Bakugou, I don't care. I don't care about finding them anymore."
But what if it's me?
These words Katsuki did not let past his lips. He was not going to sound this pathetic.
"I was looking for something when I went into your shop," Todoroki continued. He took a deep breath, as if steeling himself, and cupped Katsuki's cheek with a warm hand. "And I've found it already."
It wasn't fair that with a single touch, Katsuki melted. It wasn't fair that Todoroki looked at him with eyes that spoke of love, of something Katsuki had only ever guided others towards but had never dared hope for himself. It wasn't fair that Todoroki's lips fit perfectly against his, full and gentle and slightly chapped, and the most unfair thing of all was how it made Katsuki think that, if Todoroki was fine with not knowing, then maybe he could learn to be, too.
He'd lost count of how many soulmate flowers he'd made in his life. He knew their meaning and the power they carried.
He also knew that fate was a tricky thing, and he was far too tangled in one of its games to give a single damn anymore.