A flash of something. Purple?
Izuku doesn’t know.
What he does know is that when he can see again, he’s not where he’s supposed to be.
Izuku blinks a few times, looking around the pristine white classroom that he’s alone in. Looking down at himself, he sees that he’s still in his attire, and the light weight on his head shows that his hood is still intact on his head. He should try figuring out how to get out of here.
Just when he’s started to move, the door opens. A cute girl, probably a student, comes into the room. She has brown hair, and round pink cheeks.
When she sees him, she smiles, though it turns confused a second later.
‘Deku?’ she asks. She sounds innocent enough, but Izuku can’t help himself from frowning a bit. ‘Why’re you still in your hero outfit?’
This time, Izuku does frown. Hero outfit?
‘Where am I and who are you?’ he decides on saying instead, gaze flitting from the windows and doors to find a way to escape.
She tilts her head to the side, and tells him, ‘Uraraka Ochako. And you’re in Class 1-A. You know? UA?’
Izuku narrows his eyes – is this all a prank or is it an illusion happening in his head?
He doesn’t answer her, instead letting her look at him with growing confusion. At that moment, the door bangs open.
A familiar face comes into view.
‘Oi! Deku!’ Bakugo growls, stomping towards what’s probably his seat. ‘Get out of my way.’
‘Kacchan,’ Izuku says, because now he’s more confused than ever, ‘why are you here?’
Bakugo levels him with a glare, but Izuku doesn’t flinch. ‘Shithead, I’m fucking attending UA. Why the heck are you still in your hero outfit anyways?’
There – the words that baffle him the most. Hero outfit. It doesn’t make sense.
‘Why am I here?’ he asks, mostly to himself, but Uraraka answers him anyways.
‘You attend school here,’ she says, heading towards her own seat.
Izuku looks at her again, pulling down his hood because he might as well lower it considering the people here seem to know him. ‘That’s the problem,’ he says, eyes wandering over to Bakugo looking bored at him.
‘I never got into UA.’
Bakugo sits up in his seat, but he doesn’t have the chance to say anything before Uraraka says, ‘then why are you here?’
‘That’s what I’ve been trying to figure out,’ he snaps, ‘I have to run in case anyone here recognizes me.’
Bakugo snorts, ‘Yeah, you’re pretty fucking popular here, Deku. With the frog, the Half-and-Half Bastard, and with Shitty Hair.’
Bakugo looks at him again, ‘you’ve gone crazy. Care to explain?’
Izuku narrows his eyes – there’s definitely something wrong, the Bakugo he knows wouldn’t have held a talk like this without calling him Quirkless.
Before he says anything else, though, a group of students come through the door. All of them stop and stare at him, taking a once-over at him.
‘Midoriya?’ one of them says, an energetic-looking guy with red spiky hair. ‘Why’re you wearing your hero costume?’ A number of people nod with him. He recognizes one of them – Todoroki Shouto, son of the number one hero.
Hero. That’s what people keep calling him. But he’s not.
He gave up on that dream long ago.
A strict-looking guy – Izuku assumes he’s the teacher – comes into the class, and everyone scrambles to their seats, and Izuku is left with the seat behind Bakugo.
The teacher’s an underground hero. Izuku should know that well, because he’s been in more scuffles with him than he’s had the time for counting. Aizawa Shouta. Quirk – Erasure.
The teacher’s eyes land on him, and Izuku resists the urge to flinch under his heavy gaze. Finally, he says, ‘Midoriya, why are you in your costume?’
‘I don’t know,’ Izuku mumbles distractedly, because Eraserhead still hasn’t called him out and this in itself is definitely the strangest thing – Izuku and Eraserhead have fought face-to-face multiple times and the hero should definitely know his face by now. Not to mention his weird green hair is definitely not really forgettable.
The door slams open again, though this time it’s intentional judging by the terrified squeak that comes out from the person that’s standing there.
Hurriedly bowing down to Aizawa, his words rush out of his mouth. ‘I’m so sorry!’
‘My alarm clock broke this morning,’
‘I promise this won’t happen again!’
Nobody says anything for a long minute. Then Eraserhead pinches the bridge of his nose. ‘Midoriya.’
‘Yes?’ he says, still bending over.
He does, looking up, before he catches sight of…well, himself and looking surprised as heck.
‘What the fuck is going on?!’ Bakugo says first, slamming his hands on the table. He – the other him – has no qualms with flinching, it seems.
Aizawa says, ‘Midoriya, come here.’
Izuku does as he’s instructed, noticing more details about other-him as he draw closer. He’s more muscled, an air of confidence surrounding him despite the nervous exterior and he stands straight in a way Izuku could never dream of doing. The details are all the opposite of Izuku’s skinny frame and hunched shoulders.
He’s being suspected of an imposter. Eraserhead’s eyes light up red, hair flying around him. This wouldn’t work on Twice, Izuku thinks to himself.
‘It’s not your Quirk, that’s for sure,’ Eraserhead says, hair flying down again. ‘Who are you?’
‘Midoriya Izuku,’ he answers, using the same monotone voice he always uses with prison and security guards. ‘Sixteen years old, I don’t go to school.’
Eraserhead’s eyes narrow, but other-him speaks in at that moment, ‘Are you from a parallel universe?’
Izuku raises his eyebrow, looking at himself with a weird sort of contempt, ‘I might be. I was fighting with a newbie hero so that might have been her power.’
Other-him scrunches his nose – he honestly wants to punch himself for being that cute – and asks, ‘What’s it like there?’
Izuku’s opening his mouth to tell him to mind his own business (the irony) but Eraserhead interrupts, ‘So you don’t know anyone here?’
Izuku turns back to the teacher, ‘Well, I know you. And I know Kacchan.’
Bakugo can be heard snorting behind them.
‘You know heroes,’ Eraserhead confirms, and Izuku feels weird talking to the man who’s been trying to capture him for a lot of times.
He thinks to himself, then tells the other him, ‘Go get All Might.’
He rushes off, and then Izuku is asked another question, ‘Which school do you go to?’
‘I’ll just ask this straight – are you a villain?’
‘No offense, Eraserhead, but do you think I would let my other self wander around if I was trying to infiltrate UA? I’m not stupid,’ he sneers.
Eraserhead raises an eyebrow, and Izuku gets the feeling that other-him isn’t usually this defiant.
‘If I wanted to fit in, don’t you think I‘d try to act more like the Midoriya from this universe?’ God, it feels weird talking about himself in third person.
The door opens again, and other-him and another guy’s coming in. Izuku doesn’t know him either. He has blond hair that’s honestly too bright and a grin on his face that weirdly irks him.
‘Who are you?’ he says immediately. He distinctly recalls Eraserhead calling him ‘All Might’ a few moments ago.
Other-him and the guy shares a look, before the other him asks, ‘You don’t know who this is?’
Izuku shakes his head.
‘This is All Might,’ Izuku says, ‘the number one hero?’
Izuku shrugs, ‘never heard of him.’
Someone whispers ‘what the fuck’ and, honestly, that’s a big mood right now.
The – he assumes the other is also a teacher – two teachers look at each other, before All Might asks, ‘then who’s the number one hero?’
‘Endeavor. Hate him, though.’
Bakugo snorts, ‘At least you two have that in common.’
‘What’s that supposed to mean?’ Izuku asks sharply.
Bakugo frowns. ‘You’re too skinny and quiet. You’re not nervous and skittish like that idiot.’
Eraserhead clears his throat, and all attention returns to him as he says, ‘Well, we can at least be a bit sure that you aren’t a villain.’
If only you knew, Izuku think amusedly.
‘We can’t be too sure, though,’ All Might decides, ‘Young Midoriya can accompany you around so that you’re under supervision at all times.’
Behind him, Eraserhead rolls his eyes. Izuku gets the feeling that he’s the exasperated dad in charge of kids he never actually wanted, his colleagues included.
‘Okay, now that we’ve got this cleared up, it’s time for lessons.’
The entire class groans. Eraserhead tells someone to fetch an extra table for Izuku.
He also tells him, ‘Call me Aizawa. I’m a teacher here, not a hero.’
Izuku mockingly salutes him.
Izuku yawns for what’s probably the hundredth time as Aizawa drones on, pencil scribbling away in the book he’d been provided with to ‘keep himself busy’ as the redhead – Kirishima – joked.
All in all, he’s pretty fucking bored.
At long last, break comes, and Izuku stand up and stretches, limbs sore from not having sat that long since middle school.
Just as he’s making out of the class, other-him runs up, falling into step beside him. ‘Why’re you here?’
Other-him smiles – Izuku blinks a little to shield himself from the pure sunshine that radiates out of himself – and says, ‘I have to stick around you. All Might’s orders, remember?’
‘I’m going to walk around,’ is all Izuku says, letting himself trail behind him. They do get a lot of weird looks from other people.
When they get to the school grounds, Izuku can’t help asking, ‘how’d you – I, whatever – get into UA?’
Other-him startles, clearly not expecting the question, ‘O-oh, I developed a Quirk really late, so I managed to get into UA after I saved Uraraka in the entrance exams.’
Izuku raises an eyebrow, ‘sounds incredibly like a miracle, but okay.’
Other him laughs, then points to a shady tree, ‘That’s a good place to eat lunch. I usually bring extra so you can share with me.’
When they’re eating, other-him asks, ‘What about you?’
‘You said you didn’t go to school, so what happened?’ Izuku says, head tilting to the side inquisitively.
‘Oh, that,’ Izuku says, leaning back against the tree, ‘I stopped after middle school.’
Laughing bitterly, he explains, ‘I think that’s the point – besides All Might not existing – where our lives diverged.’
Other-him listens attentively, lunch forgotten, ‘Do you remember Kacchan telling you to go kill yourself – ourselves, whatever?’
Other-him nods, and Izuku continues, picking at the apple half Izuku’s handed him, ‘I’m guessing you just felt bad and went home, right?’
Other-him nods again and tells him, ‘On the way, I got attacked by a slime monster. All Might saved me,’ he recalls, ‘And when I regained consciousness, I asked him if Quirkless people could be heroes.’
Other-him smiles a bit painfully, ‘I bet you can guess I felt when my hero told me that I was better off being a police officer or something less dangerous.’
Izuku nods, ‘go on.’
‘Long story short, the slime escaped and attacked Kacchan and I rushed in to save him. All Might saw me and decided to train me to become a hero even without a Quirk. But I got lucky and developed one just before school.’
Izuku laughs wryly, ‘And now you’re top of the class?’
‘Not really,’ other-him laughs as well, ‘Todoroki-kun and Kacchan are better, and I kept breaking every bone in my body at first when I was using my Quirk.’
They go silent around then, but other-him asks him, ‘So you’re Quirkless?’
Izuku nods, because, hey, this is himself he’s talking to.
‘That day, I actually tried to kill myself.’ He laughs bitterly, ‘I remember thinking, when I hit the ground, hah, I can’t even kill myself properly.’
Other-him frowns – and honestly Izuku can understand why the League of Villains made fun of him when he first joined – if he looked anything like other-him did right now, he too would want to squish his cheeks and hug himself to death.
A chuckle slips past his lips, and other-him cocks his head to the side. ‘What?’
‘Nothing,’ he says, standing up, still in his gear and holding out a hand to himself. They smile.
The rest of the day passes in a blur – Izuku thinks that he falls asleep more than one time – until the whole class is heading to the training. Today will be just a simple fighting lesson, Aizawa explains. One-on-one, with Quirks allowed. One student will go against him, he says. The others will pair off on their own.
While they’re changing, other-him slips up to Izuku, and asks, ‘Do you think you’ll be okay? Everyone else has an advantage on you and – ‘
‘Midoriya,’ he says, slipping on his belt after checking it for anything wrong. He stands up from where he’s sitting, pats his shoulder, chuckling a bit, and says, ‘Have a little more faith in yourself, will you?’
When they go to the training field, Aizawa’s already there, foot tapping impatiently. Once they’ve all gathered, he clears his throat and says, ‘Alright, who’s going against me?’
Bakugo’s hand predictably shoots up, and just as Aizawa’s going to pick him, Izuku raises his.
Everybody looks surprised, though it could be because they still can’t differentiate him and their world-him.
Aizawa’s lips twitch, but he keeps an otherwise neutral expression as he says, ‘Alright, Midoriya.’
Izuku makes his way to stand against Aizawa, pulling his hood up. He can feel his legs and arms moving into position out of pure muscle memory, falling into an old routine he uses whenever he fights Aizawa one-on-one.
Eraserhead, he reminds himself. Not Aizawa.
And, by his calculations, if this universe is the exact same as his, it means Aizawa has the exact same strengths and weaknesses.
Eraserhead replies with one of his own. ‘So, Midoriya, what’s your Quirk? Same as our Midoriya?’
Izuku laughs, ‘See if you can figure it out.’
With that, he flies forward. Eraserhead deflects easily. Izuku strikes again. Deflect. Strike. Deflect. Strike. Deflect.
It’s an old routine of theirs – Izuku attacks, Eraserhead defends, vice versa, and then the actual fight begins. It seems that even though it’s in a different universe, Eraserhead still has the same mindset and instincts. It’s also a weird kind of testing out each other’s abilities, though Eraserhead definitely doesn’t know that.
It’s now Izuku’s turn to deflect, deftly dancing away and coming back closer to avoid Eraserhead’s scarves – he still doesn’t really have a concrete name for them – and flips backwards, narrowly avoiding another scarf.
Izuku can feel the eyes on him and Eraserhead. It’s thrilling, a sort of thrill he hasn’t felt in a long time, and he laughs again as he dodges.
Then Eraserhead retreats.
For a second, everything is still.
Then Izuku and Eraserhead are flying towards each other, Izuku whipping out a blade from the side of his belt and managing to nick Eraserhead on the cheek. Eraserhead’s eyes are glowing, reminding Izuku that he has another advantage to this fight – he doesn’t know he’s Quirkless.
Ah, Izuku thinks idly while dodging a punch and throwing one of his own, one of the few perks of being Quirkless.
Eraserhead lands a blow that drives Izuku back, and Izuku takes the half-second chance to pull out two daggers, each strapped to his thighs, and defend, jumping and flipping forwards in the air.
Eraserhead – weaknesses: left side sometimes unprotected, eyes hurt after using Quirk for too long, stealth hero, cannot fight large groups like he does when he fights one on one.
Izuku twists in the air, landing just behind Eraserhead. Left side, he reminds himself. With that, he jabs the handle of his blade into Eraserhead’s left as he’s turning.
Of course, being a Pro Hero, Eraserhead recovers swiftly, but his momentum is a tiny bit tripped and Izuku uses that one moment to attack where he can.
He manages to cut his arm, drawing his dagger up, taking satisfaction at the way Eraserhead’s face twists in surprise. The blade gleams in the sunlight.
Eraserhead quickly regains his balance, and they’re off again. Izuku loses himself in fighting Eraserhead, letting his senses take over and go into overdrive as he fails to block a punch to his stomach.
It knocks the air out of him, and Izuku moves back to give himself a second to recover. In doing it, he drops one of the smoke bombs up in his sleeve, moving away as quick as he can before Eraserhead can figure out what he’s doing.
The smoke bomb erupts, and there’s total silence before there’s a loud clang! and the smoke clears.
Izuku grins, tilting his chin up and looking down at the hero pinned down in front of him. Eraserhead looks surprised, but Izuku can tell he went a bit easy on him – whether it’s because he looks like one of the hero’s students or because he’s a total stranger, Izuku doesn’t know.
Then someone breaks the silence. ‘What the fuck?’ they say, and Izuku does admit that seeing their ‘cinnamon roll’ having defeated their teacher showing no mercy might look a bit weird.
He stands up, offering a hand to the teacher.
Izuku seeks his own face out in the crowd, and when he finds himself, looking awestruck, he mouths, I told you so.
‘What the fuck?’ someone says again. ‘Can someone explain how the hell Midoriya just beat our teacher?’
Eraserhead – Aizawa – stands up, brushing himself off, and says, ‘You did good.’
Izuku smirks. ‘Did anyone figure out my Quirk?’
The class rep – Iida Tenya, Izuku remembers – raises his hand, and says, ‘You fought like you knew where he was going to strike. So is your Quirk related to premonition?’
Izuku shakes his head, smile dancing on his lips, ‘Good try, but no.’
Uraraka waves her hand, ‘Oh! Is it some kind of martial art Quirk?’
‘Haha, you humor me,’ Izuku says dryly. He sneaks a glance at Aizawa, who probably knows the answer already, and has a hand on his forehead, probably feeling incredibly tired of his students’ stupidity.
When nobody offers up another solution, he sighs, ‘Okay, so Aizawa-san was using his Quirk on me, yet I still beat him. Any idea why?’
A girl with pink hair and skin says, ‘You’re not reliant on your Quirk?’
Izuku has to fight himself from smashing his head into the wall at the sheer amount of stupidity. By the looks of it, Aizawa wants to too.
‘No,’ he says instead, trying to keep his voice light and steady. ‘Any more guesses?’
From the back, Todoroki Shouto says, ‘You didn’t and couldn’t use your Quirk because you don’t have one.’
Finally, a smart one.
‘But I don’t get it. Why would you challenge Aizawa-sensei if you were Quirkless?’
‘Connect the pieces, guys,’ he says, spreading his arms out, ‘I knew what Eraserhead was going to do, and I’m Quirkless.’
Everyone’s quiet, and Izuku can hear the crickets chirping.
At last, it’s his counterpart that seems to figure it out. ‘You knew what Aizawa-sensei was going to do, but you don’t have a Quirk, so that means you’re accustomed to his moves?’
Izuku claps, ‘Correct. And what kind of person fights heroes on an almost-daily basis?’
‘Villains,’ Bakugo growls, and Izuku claps, slow and mocking.
‘Well, aren’t you all so smart,’ Izuku sneers.
There’s a slow moment of realization. ‘You’re Quirkless?!’ Bakugo seethes, a bit belatedly, Izuku might add.
‘You’re a villain?’ other-him follows up, and Bakugo glares at him.
‘But you said you weren’t!’
Izuku shrugs, turning to the teacher. ‘Not in this universe.’
Aizawa claps his hands then, signaling for everyone’s attention. ‘Okay, you kids can sort yourselves out later. Get in pairs, now.’
Izuku wears a tired satisfied smile as the class troops back to change. He’d won against Bakugo, and seeing the look on his childhood friend/enemy was worth the burns that were scattered on his arms and chest.
Everyone surrounds him when they leave, and Kirishima asks, ‘So, you’re a villain? Are you associated with the League of Villains?’
Izuku nods, rolling his eyes. ‘I’m not going to tell you anything.’
‘Aw, shucks man,’ Kirishima laughs, throwing a hand over his shoulder. ‘It’s okay as long as you don’t do anything to our universe. We’re all fine.’
Kaminari joins them, throwing another arm over his shoulder. ‘How’re you going to get back?’
Izuku shrugs them off, ‘I don’t know. It’s up to my world. They usually fix everything pretty quickly so it should be any moment now, actually.’
Kirishima grins, and drags other-him to him. ‘Well, you should say your goodbyes,’ he laughs.
Izuku mockingly holds out a hand to himself. ‘Well,’ he says, smiling, ‘If you’ve ever wondered about how you would be in a world without All Might, you have your answer.’
Other-him doesn’t smile, but reaches out to shake his hand, ‘Noted.’
Izuku smiles, then blacks out.
When his eyes open, he’s greeted by the familiar scent of smoke where he and Dabi live. Said person is on their couch, flipping through the pages of a magazine.
‘You’re back,’ Dabi greets him.
Izuku sits up slowly, head still spinning a bit, ‘I forgive you.’
Dabi raises an eyebrow, and puts down the magazine, ‘What for?’
‘Making fun of me when I first joined.’
Dabi chuckles, ‘What happened in the time you were gone?’
Izuku hops of out the bed, wincing at the sudden movement, ‘I’ll tell you later.’
Straightening, he gives Dabi a rueful smile. ‘Call a meeting for an attack.’
Izuku chuckles at Dabi’s questioning gaze.
‘We’re going to attack UA.’