nuts and bolts // cyborg!bakugou katsuki x fem mechanic!reader
Bakugou pulled his hoodie further over his head as he checked the clock on the wall for the fifth time since he had let the woman with pink hair at the front desk know he had arrived. You were an hour and a half late and he could see that the others waiting around along with him were beginning to grow annoyed as well. He tapped his metal foot against the ground, concealed by the heavy duty boots he wore constantly.
With his prosthetic arm and leg being on the opposite sides of his body, he had long since learned how to properly balance himself with the weight difference, but having them be replaced with newer models was definitely going to take some time to relearn.
He had also several more alterations done internally that didn’t exactly bother him, bit you always seemed to fret over those ones the most.
The door slammed open, startling a few of those around him. He lifted his gaze, spotting a petite brunette holding a clipboard, her face flushed. He had seen her a multitude of times from when he began to see you, but still hadn’t quite cared enough to learn her name. Round Face, is what he called her, not that he ever really talked to her to begin with.
“I apologize for the delay, everyone! Unfortunately, (Y/N) won’t be able to see all of you today. Her schedule is free tomorrow, if you would no longer like to wait out here,” she smiled, watching as almost everyone left. Everyone except for Bakugou. There was no way in hell he was waiting until tomorrow. He was already there and the trip to your little hideout was out of his way.
Round Face looked over at Bakugou, looking down at her clipboard. Her eyes widened slightly before she looked up at him. He wasn’t quite able to catch the look in her eyes before she masked it, clearing her throat. “She’s ready to see you now.”
“About fucking time,” he grumbled, standing up. He shoved his hands deep into the pockets of his khaki pants, following the brunette through the free hallways that led to your workspace. She tapped her knuckle against the door, hearing your voice from the opposite side allowing her to enter.
Stepping inside, Bakugou crinkled his nose as he looked around. Your usual clean workplace was absolutely trashed with scraps of metal and tools lying all over the place. The room wasn’t the only thing that was a mess, you were, too.
“Just the guy I wanted to see,” you chirped, hopping up from your chair. You thanked the brunette, gently taking the clipboard before she left the two of you alone. “You know the drill already. Take a seat.”
“What the hell happened here?” he found himself asking, taking a good look at you as he pulled his hood down. He rolled his eyes when he didn’t get a response, hearing the slight tinkering of tools as you went over his files. “Oi!”
“Any damages or problems with your current prosthetics?” you asked, lifting your head from the clipboard to look at him. He took notice of the bags under your eyes and the slouch of your shoulders. You definitely weren’t getting enough sleep, but you still managed to keep your bubbly demeanor intact.
Bakugou shook his head, pulling off his left boot and hoodie to give you better access to the metal appendages, and sat down on the rusty chair that creaked under his weight. You set his stuff to the side, taking hold of his metal hand as you got straight to business, but he didn’t miss the frown on your face at the signs of the scars on his chest and shoulders. You bent the joints, checking to see if anything had rusted or was uncomfortable. “Your new prosthetics are a lot lighter than these, but I can’t have you overdo it again.”
Bakugou scowled. “Wheelchairs aren’t exactly my thing and why the hell did I have to come all the way out here?” He noticed the way you paused, took a breath and stepped away, kneeling to check the condition of his leg.
“They’ve been on my ass lately. You know what could happen if I slip up,” you whispered. Bakugou leaned back in the chair, a groan of protest coming from it. He knew exactly who you were referring to. “Plus, if they found out I’ve been helping you, I’d be in even more trouble.”
“Fucking morons…,” he muttered and you smiled, shaking your head.
“You did always tell me you’d be a legend,” you stood up, patting his knee, “but I never thought you’d be a fugitive.”
He smirked, rolling his eyes. “I’m the best damn fugitive there is!” He flexed his metal fingers, feeling his skin grow hot at the sound of your laugh.
“Yes, you are,” you replied, bending his foot every which way. “I just wish that they’d stop…”
“You fucking worried about me or something?”
“No, not at all. I’m well aware that you’re able to take care of yourself, especially with my little upgrades,” you winked at him before standing straight, stretching. “If our society wasn’t so messed up to begin with, this never would’ve happened. I still can’t believe what they did to you…” You reached out, brushing your finger on one of his scars the stretched across his chest and stopped almost directly above where his heart laid in his chest.
Bakugou caught your hand in his, turning your hand gently so your palm was facing upward. He traced a familiar pattern onto your skin with his metal hand, a code the two of you had made as kids. Relax, he had said.
You managed to smile, pulling your hand away slightly. He knew from experience that your own heart couldn’t take much stress and he only wished you would worry about yourself more than others.
“You’ve been overworking yourself again, haven’t you?” He raised an eyebrow, watching as you turned your back to him to grab his new prosthetics.
“Maybe a little…,” you admitted. “But I’m okay, I swear! I haven’t slept in a few days, but that’s nothing I can’t handle.”
The sound of your stomach growling filled his ears. Bakugou rolled his eyes, turning his head to avoid seeing the blush on your cheeks.
“Dumbass… You haven’t been eating again, have you?” He stood up, adjusting his weight before he pulled the prosthetics out of your hands and setting them aside. You pouted, about to grab them when Bakugou tossed you over his shoulder.
Your shirt slid up, causing his metal shoulder to come into contact with your bare abdomen. “Bakugou, put me down, that’s cold!” you shrieked, squirming in his hold.
“Should’ve thought about that before you decided to starve yourself!”
“I didn’t starve myself! Put me down!” You huffed when Bakugou didn’t answer, knowing he had made up his mind already, so there was no way you were getting down until he decided to put you down. “You weren’t supposed to come here to take care of me… I’m supposed to take care of you.”
“You’re only in this mess because you’re a dumbass and decided not to take care of yourself.”
You knew he had a point, but with everything going on with Bakugou, you figured he was much more important than you were.
“I need to do x-rays when your new prosthetics are on,” you muttered, switching topics.
“Whatever.” Bakugou set you down in the middle of the kitchen. Your hideout was like a second home, with how often you’d stay late to work on prosthetics and make sure they were made to everyone’s liking, even if you could be severely punished if they found out you were helping cyborgs. “What do you want to eat?”
“Ooh, you’re gonna cook for me? Maybe I should work like this more-” you cut yourself off once you saw the glare he gave you, a soft laugh leaving your lips. “I’m only joking, relax. You worry about me too much.”
“I do not. You’re the one who worries about me,” Bakugou replied and you shrugged, hopping up onto one of the counters as you watched him open the fridge. “What the hell?! There isn’t anything in here!”
You pouted, crossing your arms over your chest. “Yes, there is!” Bakugou slammed the fridge shut, tugging at his hair.
“Nothing edible! Why the hell do you keep your equipment in the fridge?”
“One, because no one would think to look there, and two, because the cold metal keeps me awake.” You smiled. Bakugou rolled his eyes.
“Why the hell do I keep coming here again?” he muttered.
“Because I’m the best mechanic in all of Japan!” You threw your hands up in the air, laughing. “And you only accept the best. That’s why you’re still here. You probably would’ve left a long time ago if I wasn’t. I work so hard because I want to be the best for you.”
Bakugou’s eyes widened slightly and he looked away, running the back of his neck. Is that what you truly thought? He could never leave you. No when you stole his heart without even realizing it.
Not while your own was so fragile.
“(Y/N), it’s time!” he heard someone call out, matching the voice to the pink haired girl at the front desk. You frowned, getting down from the counter.
“Coming!” you called back before looking at him. “How about takeout? There are a bunch of menus inside of that drawer there. Order whatever you think is best. I trust your judgement.”
Bakugou opened the drawer as he heard you leave the kitchen, looking through them all. It seemed like you had ordered from every restaurant in a twenty mile radius. He hadn’t even heard of half of them.
“She speaks highly of you, you know.”
The blonde jumped, whipping his head around and meeting the apologetic brown eyes of Round Face. “Don’t do that, you fucking creep!”
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to. Has she always been like this?” Round Face asked, watching as Bakugou read through the pamphlets.
“Had already been what? Stubborn, immature and cares way too much about others than herself? Yes,” he replied bluntly, looking up when he heard her laugh.
“I’m sorry, it’s just that you two seem like good friends. She hasn’t always been this sick, has she?”
Bakugou wasn’t sure why he felt compelled to answer this strange girl, but he couldn’t talk about you to anyone else in case they decided to report you, so he decided to do it anyway.
“Not this bad, no, but she’s always had a bad immune system. She was in and out of hospitals constantly. It happened even more often when she began tinkering around. She wanted to help people, even if it was illegal. Even if she was putting herself at risk.” He clenched and unclenched his metal hand, frustrated. “When I… When I lost my arm and leg, I was told she would visit me every day for hours before she went home to work on prosthetics for me. She even read a lot of medical books so she could install them and take care of me herself.”
There was a silence that passed between them and Bakugou looked back at the menus.
“But?” she finally asked.
“I don’t know. I feel like you have more to say.”
“It’s not important…”
“Well, it’s obvious that you care about her. I’m glad she has someone like you looking out for her. She won’t listen to us when we tell her to take care of herself.”
Bakugou sighed, looking over a Chinese takeout menu before looking up at the brunette.
“She never listens. She’s too kind, too naive. She tries to help everyone even if she kills herself in the process,” he muttered, feeling his heart ache in his chest. Why was he even still talking to her?
“You like her, don’t you?”
Bakugou froze for a moment. No, he didn’t like you. It was much more than that. His feelings were even stronger than love itself.
“(Y/N), stop running! You’re going to get worked up again!” Both him and the brunette turned towards the sound of the other woman’s voice. He could hear your footsteps, rolling his eyes as you nearly collided with Round Face.
“Relax! I feel fine, Mina!” you called out, bounding over to Bakugou with the energy of an excited puppy. If he didn’t know you so well, he would’ve never known that you hadn’t slept in days all because you wanted to finish his prosthetics. You walked over to your client/childhood friend. “Did you order something?”
“Not yet,” he glanced at the two women standing in the doorway. You followed his gaze, smiling at them.
“Are you two hungry?” you asked, completely oblivious to how Bakugou rolled his eyes and turned away, pulling out his phone. He heard Round Face laugh.
“No, it’s alright. Thank you, though. I actually think we should get home. You seem to be in good hands,” she replied. Bakugou turned to look at her, his eyes narrowing slightly. He only relaxed once they were out of sight. “Well, I guess it’s just you and me.”
Bakugou pushed the menu over to you as he dialed the number, waiting for you to reply with what you wanted before he called.
Once the food was ordered, Bakugou let out a sigh.
“Do you really think I’ll leave you if you aren’t the best mechanic?” He looked over at you, noticing how vulnerable you seemed as you tried to wrack your brain for a proper answer.
“Well,” you began after a moment of silence had passed, “you always did say you couldn’t accept anything less than the best. I couldn’t have a little heart condition stop me from being the best for you, Katsu.”
The sound of his childhood nickname surprised him, having not heard it in years. He furrowed his eyebrows, crossing his arms over his chest. “Why’d you stop calling me that?”
“Katsu. You used to call me that all the time when we were kids.”
You seemed a bit startled, shifting nervously in your seat. “I didn’t mean to call you that. I remember saying how much you hated when I called you Katsu and Deku called you-”
“(Y/N),” he interrupted, eyeing you. Your shoulders sagged, finally letting your exhaustion show. “We’re not here to talk about him. Don’t change the subject.”
There was a bite to his voice and you knew why. He didn’t like when you brought him up. Not when he was partially responsible for what happened to Bakugou and your slowly deteriorating health.
“I’m sorry,” you whispered and he panicked when he saw tears well up in your eyes. He had never seen you cry in all the years he had known you. You were so strong, much stronger than he was. It seemed almost unreal that you were breaking down right in front of him.
He turned towards you, taking you in his arms. You were so warm, so fragile. He would do anything in his power to protect you. “Please don’t cry…,” he whispered as he watched you hide your face and hold onto him tightly. “I’m not going anywhere.”
He knew you missed Deku. Hell, he’d be lying if he said he didn’t miss that bastard. Well, before he decided to abandon the two of you, at least.
Bakugou held you, watching you carefully. You didn’t seem to be crying and the small watch on your wrist indicated that your heart rate was normal. You suddenly ripped yourself away from him, startling him. He missed your soft body, your warmth.
“Let’s get those prosthetics done,” you said, a steady determination in your eyes.
Bakugou felt weightless as you disconnected the heavy metal prosthetics from his body, staring up at the ceiling. He was currently waiting for you to run some final tests to see if there were no issues with his new appendages.
“What would you be doing if you decided to not be a mechanic?” he suddenly asked, hearing you laugh from the opposite side of the room.
“That’s a bit of an odd question, but I never really thought about it. I just wanted to help you and other people who are in similar situations,” you replied and Bakugou clenched his jaw. He sat up and you could feel the heat of his glare from where he sat.
“You should care more about yourself, dammit!” he yelled. You didn’t respond, the tinkering of tools stopping as you completed your tests. You stood and crossed the room to stand in front of him, setting the new prosthetics beside where he sat on the small cot.
“My life doesn’t matter.” The blunt way you said it made his blood boil.
“What the hell are you saying?!”
“I’ll say it once and I’ll say it again. My life doesn’t matter.” Your tone was much more firm this time, your eyes narrowing as you spoke.
“And what the hell kind of reason do you have for thinking like that?!”
“I can’t make a difference like you can, alright?!” you shouted back at him, startling him. Your body was tense, your face screwing up in irritation. Bakugou wasn’t having any of it.
“What the hell have you been doing then, huh? All the other fucking mechanics that were helping cyborgs have been put out of business! You’re helping them! You’re helping me!”
You didn’t seem to be listening to him anymore. How in the hell did you not realize your own worth? It went far beyond just you being a mechanic, it was several other things. “Are you not taking care of yourself on purpose?”
“I just get caught up in work. It’s no big deal.”
“Are you waiting for this fucking disease to just kill you?! Is that why you aren’t taking care of yourself?!”
“Enough, already!” That shut him up easily, letting you connect the wires from the man-made joint in his arm to the prosthetic piece. “There’s no need to see me after this. With this, only minor repairs are needed that you can figure out yourself.”
“Wait a damn-”
“You have a whole country looking up to you. They only go along with what the government says out of fear. You and I both know the real Deku would never go along with what they say.”
“Don’t fucking say his name!”
“Or what, Bakugou?!”
Bakugou recoiled, clenching his fists. “Don’t you understand? He’s the one who did this to us! The fact that you even want him back in our lives is some messed up bullshit.”
You didn’t answer, connecting the last of the wires. You gave it time to connect to his nerves, noticing the way Bakugou’s body tensed up.
“Try it now,” you ordered, already getting started on his leg. The sooner he left, the better, in your opinion. Bakugou rolled his eyes, looking over at his new metal arm. It was sleek and definitely much lighter than his last one. Giving himself time to think for a moment, his eyes narrowed.
“You like that fucking traitor, don’t you?” he asked, gripping on to the thin sheet that laid beneath him on the cot. He hoped you couldn’t hear the disappointment in his voice, the hurt.
“What’s it to you?” you replied, your hands moving quickly to attach the wires. Usually you made small talk, joking around with him until you had your next appointment. Your words were clipped this time, an edge to them that could cut him if that was what you wanted.
Turns out, you had already begun, the edge of your words cutting deep in his heart.
“After everything he did? Why?” Bakugou could feel a lump in his throat and an ache in his chest, but he wasn’t going to cry.
“Love is complicated. You wouldn’t understand.” You finished connecting his leg to the rest of his body, turning your back to him.
Your words twisted, hurting him more and more.
He knew what love was. He felt it so deeply for you. It was a lovely, but awful feeling, one that could tear a person apart.
“If there are no issues with the prosthetics, you’re free to leave.”
“Not gonna get on my ass about overdoing it?” he asked, narrowing his eyes once he didn’t get an answer. “Fine, whatever,” he snarled, bending his ankle this way and that to see if it calibrated to his nerves correctly. He pulled his hoodie back on over his head and pulled his boot on to cover his mechanical leg.
He spared you one last glance before he left, slamming the door shut behind him.
This was the exact reason why he didn’t trust anyone, why he barely ever opened up.
Why would he ever want to get his heart broken?
Bakugou tossed his keys onto the rickety wooden table by the front door. He lived in a poorly built apartment complex, but it was all he could afford as a fugitive and the landlady was in her 70s and could barely see.
A sigh left his lips as he collapsed into the couch, still not used to the weight of his new and improved appendages. He brought his forearm to his eyes, smiling softly at your handiwork. Everything was carefully manufactured and put together, not a single screw out of place. Above all, you had always been a bit of a perfectionist.
As he ran his fingers along the smooth metal, his nail caught on a small hatch. He smirked and shook his head. Of course you’d make a hidden compartment. Opening it up, he saw a folded piece of paper. Bakugou sat up, pulling out the note and unfolding it. He immediately recognized your swirly handwriting, leaning back against the couch cushions as he read.
You found it! Pretty neat, huh? Anyway, I hope you like it. I dunno what you fugitives would need to hide other than yourselves, but now you have this really cool hiding spot! Thank you for being patient with me, I wanted it to be perfect. You better not damage my work! >:( - Yours Truly, (Y/N)
Bakugou traced the letters you had written, realizing you probably hated him and these were the last few things he had of you. Just the thought of losing you caused an ache in his chest, but should he go back? Should he leave you be? There was no way in hell he was apologizing, though. He wanted you to know the worth you didn’t seem to realize you had.
But would you hate him more if he showed up at your door again? He didn’t even have a chance to say the three words that had been on the tip of his tongue for years now.
He pulled his phone out of his pocket, opening up your contact in his phone. He rarely ever texted you, but what could he possibly say? His thoughts were all jumbled, so there was no way he’d be able to get it in a text.
After several tries, Bakugou decided to just go for something simple, carefully crafting his words so he wouldn’t upset you further.
You’re an amazing person, (Y/N). One day, I hope you see yourself the way I see you.
He sighed, getting himself ready for bed. He highly doubted that you’d respond, but he kept his phone close by just in case you did as he showered.
Bakugou let the hot water run off his body, a memory coming back to him that he had almost forgotten, but it came so vividly, as if it had only happened yesterday.
“Deku! Deku, they’re burning!” you shouted, alerting the two boys, who came running into the kitchen. Smoke was coming off from the pan on the stove, filling the room. You ran to open a window. How had they not smelled it burning earlier?
“How the hell did you manage to burn eggs? They’re not that hard to make!” Bakugou yelled, quickly turning off the stove. They were too late to stop the fire alarm from going off, though.
“I lost track of time!” Deku called back, trying to assure you that the house wouldn’t burn down.
Bakugou tossed the pan into the sink, running water over it. He then cursed as the sprinklers went off, soaking the three of you. “Damn it, Deku!”
They both froze when they heard your laughter, not expecting you to be laughing when Deku had almost burned your whole house down. They exchanged glances before they found themselves laughing along with you.
“Let’s leave the cooking to Katsu next time, okay?” you had suggested, earning a nod in response.
Bakugou tugged at his hair, wondering why he suddenly remembered such a thing. Was it because that was the night that he realized he had feelings for you? Or was it because that was the day Deku simply vanished into thin air?
He stood under the water long enough for it to grow cold, and even then, he stayed there. He shut off the water and got out, drying himself off before throwing on a pair of sweats and an old t-shirt. He checked his phone to see if you had responded, frowning when he saw you hadn’t even read it yet.
His whole body tensed once he heard someone banging on the door, quickly checking the time.
Who the hell would be at his door at that hour?
“Katsu,” he heard a familiar voice cry out. It was strained and hoarse, but he would recognize it anywhere. He rushed to the door, his eyes widening as he took in your appearance.
“What the hell happened?” he asked, his heart pounding in his chest. Blood stained your clothes along your abdomen, nasty bruises along your cheek and arms. He also noticed a deep gash on your left calf. He scooped you up in his arms as he noticed how unsteady you were on your own feet, closing the door behind him as he brought you to his bedroom.
You clung to him and Bakugou didn’t care about the blood. He cared about you being safe.
“They found out…,” you whispered, your voice shaking. “H-He came and-”
“Damn it…” Bakugou sat you down on the bed, quickly reaching for the first aid kit. He wiped away your tears gently, tracing figures along your palm to help calm you down. He wasn’t sure how you made it all the way to his place in that state, but he was going to do everything he could to protect you. “Look at me. I’m going to fix you up, okay?”
Bakugou didn’t wait for an answer before he got to work, cutting away your clothes from your abdomen. There was so much blood that he was surprised you hadn’t passed out yet, but he could always blame that on your stubbornness.
“Get it off!” you suddenly screeched, startling him. You thrashed about, nearly causing Bakugou to stab you with the pair of scissors.
“(Y/N)! (Y/N), I need you to calm down!” He cradled your face in his hands after quickly setting down the scissors, making you look into his eyes. He could see sheer terror in your own eyes, tears welling up again, but your body stilled. He could tell how exhausted you were, yet you still fought the urge the close your eyes. “That’s my girl.”
He got to work on patching you up, talking to you every so often to keep you awake. He wasn’t a great doctor, but he sure as hell wasn’t going to lose you.
He began pulling your clothes off gently once he had finished, washing his hands before grabbing extra clothes for him and a shirt of his for you to wear. He quickly covered your body, moving out of the room to change his own clothes.
Stepping back into the room, Bakugou noticed two things. You had finally allowed yourself to rest, making Bakugou check to see if you were still breathing, and a small slip of paper on the floor. He clenched his jaw as he read what was written on there.
Turn yourself in before it gets worse, Kacchan.