The Erasure Pro Hero and the black-haired teen stared at each other wide-eyed for what seemed like an eternity. Aizawa felt a sudden sense of dread that hit at his core, his heart skipping a beat.
This can’t be possible, it can’t be real, can it?
Yeah, he’s probably dreaming right now, Hizashi probably forgot to wake him up and his brain decided to fuck with him while he sleeps. He won’t lie though, he wishes this was real. It felt real…
Those same turquoise eyes, the way he spoke with the blond girl, teasingly but still carrying the fondness he felt for her. Just like his kid Touya acted around him and Yamada, around the people he felt safe with, the people he trusted. And yet he still failed to save him.
Yamada tried to break him out of his daze by grabbing his shoulder shaking him back and forth worriedly, bringing him back to reality, he blinked, his eyes still cloudy. His husband stared at him in horror, like he had just witnessed a murder.
“…Shouta? W-Why did you say that name?” The blond asked, his voice cracking up.
Aizawa dazedly turned to look back at the teen who was still frozen in place, ignoring his husband’s attempts to shake him out of his daydreaming. He wonders why his mind would have Touya fully scarred in his dreams, he didn’t have that many when they last saw each other. They seemed so painful.
Yamada gave up on snapping the man out of his mind, he followed the other’s gaze making eye contact with the teen, who finally broke out from his shock and looked down at his shoes, stuffing his clenched fists in his pockets, fidgeting uncomfortably under the men’s gazes.
Dab-Touya was so stunned that his heart skipped a beat. After he had recovered himself from his shock he hesitantly brought himself to look at them in the eye and gave them a broken smile, he winced as drops of blood came out from his stitches.
“H-Hey Zashi” The teen said eyes on the blond before looking at the hopeful man at his side with a fond look. “Zawa,” he said almost as a whisper with an uncertain smirk.
Aizawa held his breath for a moment feeling a knot in his throat, he can’t do this…it’s been years…it still hurts, he wants to believe, to grab onto this false hope, but it’s too much. So he just stays there, not moving.
Meanwhile, Hizashi let out a short gasp staring at the boy like he was a ghost, the teen laughed awkwardly looking anywhere but at the couple.
Once that first tear broke free, the rest followed in an unbroken stream. Hizashi ran towards the boy, bringing him into a tight embrace, the once red-haired teen tensed at the touch, not really expecting the sudden move. After a second of hesitation, fighting tears back, he returned the embrace, burying his face into the blond’s neck.
The Pro Hero tightened his hold as Touya soaked the crook of his neck with tears, the boy’s shoulder shaking slightly. He squeezed him in his hold repeatedly like he was making sure he was actually there and wouldn’t disappear on him. Again.
The other two kids who were watching the scene confused ran towards their friend’s side as soon as they realized he was crying.
Himiko was watching the tired man like he was a threat with a withering glare. she had grabbed a piece of sharp metal on her way and brushed her thumb on the tip, the object fidgeting in her hand. She didn’t take her eyes off of him, watching him carefully with a sharp half-amused, half-angered smile, like a predator stalking her prey, waiting for it to make a move so she could slice its throat.
She was counting on Izuku to get Dabi off of the other man and ask what the hell was going on. Said boy had panicked at first when he saw his friend tense from far away.
Touya and the two other men stared at each other for an incredibly awkward amount of time. Then out of nowhere, the blond threw himself at Dabi when his friend had said something she couldn’t hear from this distance.
Unlike Himiko, Izuku had calmed down a bit when he noticed that Dabi had hugged the other man back, meaning that they knew each other somehow, but Himiko looked like she could kill the two strangers with her glare.
So while she stared at the man like a wild animal, the greenette shyly tapped the blond man on the shoulder, frowning when he noticed the tears falling on the man’s cheeks, he felt like he was intruding on an important matter.
The man opened his eyes slowly, blinking off tears. He looked at Izuku and gave him a small, strained smile, still holding his friend in a tight embrace. Midoriya’s eyes widened as he got a better look at the blonde.
He gasped loudly, catching the girl’s attention. He looked at the other black-haired man and back to the blond guy several times until he recovered from his internal fanboy screaming and signed to Himiko.
“It’s Present Mic and Eraserhead!!”
“What!? No way!!” The girl let out an excited screech dropping the sharp object into the sand, she now looked at them in awe. The dark-haired man looked at her wide-eyed in shock like he couldn’t believe she was now fangirling over them when half a second ago she looked like she was ready to commit murder.
Yamada leaned away from Touya, squeezing the boy’s shoulder in comfort as the other aggressively wiped away his tears. The Pro Hero let out a wet laugh, this was really Touya.
This kid has so much to explain...
Hizashi turned to look at the two kids who recognized him. They were torn between staring at him in awe and looking worried since their friend was still crying.
He walked towards the kids glancing at Touya over his shoulders and whispering “I’ll get the kids busy, go talk to him” Touya nodded still not meeting his eyes.
Midoriya and Himiko didn’t have time to ask their friend how they knew each other since the Pro Hero proceeded to walk towards them and yelled his catchphrase, resulting in having two teenagers squealing in excitement as he happily led them away.
They stood in front of each other for a long awkward time in silence. Neither of them knew how to proceed, a heavy tension filling the air.
Touya couldn’t bring himself to look at the man, he felt ashamed for running away like the coward he is, just the thought of his once teacher being disappointed at him made him want to disappear. God, he must look so pathetic right now.
Sighing, he rubbed his temples. He hasn't said anything yet and he already feels a headache incoming, he just wants to get over with this as soon as possible. After some more minutes of silence, he gathered the courage to confront the man.
As soon as he looked up, his eyes widened slightly, his former teacher was just standing there, staring at him with cloudy eyes, like he was still trying to comprehend what was going on.
The man didn’t show any reaction, he frowned, was he that disappointed?
“Listen, I’m so-“
Touya blinked, taken aback. “What?”
“You’re alive” The man continued ignoring the other’s confusion, letting out a shaky, relieved sigh.
Todoroki had never seen his teacher look this broken before, not even when Hizashi got hurt that one time while patrolling had he dared to show this much emotion. He felt guilty for being the reason that the man looked like he was about to have a breakdown.
“We were told by Endeavor that you killed yourself” The long-haired man said with a broken voice, wiping the tears that were falling down his face.
Touya did a double-take shocked. Killed himself? Did that bastard really give that excuse? So many possible ways to tell people why he disappeared and he chose to tell people that he committed suicide!? Son of a bitch!
A feeling of dread crept up from the pit of his stomach, his eyes widened in horror as realization hit him. God, they mourned over his “death” for three fucking years. Now it makes sense why both men were looking at him in utter disbelief earlier. He thought it was because of his scars or for being gone for so long... fuck.
“I failed you.”
Startled the teen turned back his attention to his once teacher, the man carried the expression of someone who just realized they have done something terrible. Before he could speak up the man continued.
“I failed to notice the signs.”
Touya flinched at how bitter the words were spoken, the man was mad, but his anger wasn’t directed at him, no, it was directed at himself.
Aizawa shook his head, looking down at the sand like it had personally offended him, “I could have gotten you out of that place, I shouldn’t have taken you home that day if only I had paid more attention…”
His eyes narrowed, he shouldn’t feel responsible about what happened to him, Aizawa had done nothing but show support when he needed it most. It never crossed his mind to blame the man, after all, he did try to help. “There was nothing you could have done ‘Zawa…he was- is the number two after all, and I’m certain that even if I told the Hero Commission about his crimes, no one would have believed me.”
The Pro Hero pursed his lips, Touya wasn’t wrong, Nedzu had said the same thing, but he just… there had to be something that he could have done, anything…
Sighing sadly, the teen walked towards the tired man, he had made no sign that he acknowledged his presence as he sat next to where the man was standing on the sand.
“Don’t blame yourself, please…if anything, it was my fault for not telling you earlier…”
Aizawa shook his head letting out a distressed sigh as he sat as well. “You’re not at fault.” The teen hummed in response before the two of them silently agreeing that both weren’t at fault.
They both watched Hizashi as he made exaggerated movements and poses as he probably talked about one of his ridiculous and totally not made up stories to the other two teens who looked at him with stars in their eyes.
Shouta’s attention was on the two kids, they looked different from each other, one blonde and the other with curly green hair, they were really young, about the same age his soon to be new students would be. He wonders how Touya had stumbled across these two, but by the interaction that he saw earlier, he could tell that the three of them were pretty close.
Trying to change the subject slightly, he turned to look back at the teen at his side “So…you have been staying with those kids all this time or...?” Shouta asked blinking back tears. God, he hates being this vulnerable, but there is no way he can keep up his façade when the kid who he had mourned over for years is alive and sitting right by his side.
He flinched as his ex-student laughed bitterly “God I wish, I’ve been trying to survive on the streets with Himiko for years until Izuku took us to his mother’s apartment a couple of days ago.”
Shouta furrowed his brows into a scowl as his mind was engulfed with negative thoughts about how thought it must have been for those two, having to live like that...
“Why didn’t you come to me? To Nedzu? We could have helped,” He asked a bit hurt, didn’t the kid trust him enough?
Touya felt a twinge of guilt “I know you would,” He said softly almost as a whisper. “But I didn’t have much of a choice…I wanted more than anything to tell someone, to tell you, ” He looked back at the trio who were chatting non-stop “But then things escalated so quickly that night,”
“My body is not compatible with my quirk and that pissed off the old man for years, he made me overuse during ‘training’ in hope that my body would get used to it. You can tell it didn’t work, it just made things worse, especially when he would beat the shit out of me so that I could ‘endure’ physical attacks. He wouldn’t stop beating me up even when I was having a panic attack.”
Touya took a long breath before continuing, not noticing the Pro-Hero’s eye twitching with fury. The man felt a white-hot spike of rage shoot through him at the other’s description of the events.
“I lost control in our last training session,” he caressed his scars, “I was just so tired that day, I couldn’t even dodge his attacks…pathetic right?” He chuckled humorlessly, Aizawa frowned worriedly, getting closer to him and placing a hand on his shoulder, Touya relaxed a bit at the touch.
“That bastard wouldn’t shut the hell up about how weak I’ve become, that U.A had me slacking off, that I should use my fire more, pushing my limits every single fucking day...” The teen looked at him, turquoise eyes clouded, tears gathering at the edges of his eyes.
“I-I just wanted to get away, I was just so, so, so fucking tired ‘Zawa …” said the teen with a tremulous voice.
Shouta felt his heart shatter at how broken his once student’s voice sounded, as much as he wanted to embrace the teen into a tight hug and offer any words of comfort, but he had to hold himself from doing it since he knew the other wasn’t done talking.
“He didn’t even take me to a hospital…I think it was so no one would know what happened to me, I don’t think my siblings know I’m alive as well since he told you that I killed myself,” he huffed, “I’m not surprised he used that excuse, to be honest.”
“When I was stable enough to move, he told me that he was disappointed in me that I was a failure, and since I was pretty much worthless to him for not being able to use my fire without hurting myself, there was no reason for him to keep me under his roof, he didn’t want people to know that he had such a pathetic, weak son,” He sighed in frustration.
“He warned me to never talk about what happened or my siblings and my mother would suffer the consequences for it. He is the one paying for my mother’s treatment and my siblings had nowhere to go but to be honest, I had a feeling that he wasn’t talking about that, deep down I knew that was threatening to kill them minus Shouto, if I ever opened my mouth.”
Shouta didn’t even try to hide his shock, would Endeavor go that far? He thought about it, looking at the scarred teen at his side who was anxiously burying his fingers in his arms.
Yes, he would.
He would kill his own family if that meant keeping his dirty little secrets behind doors. He didn’t blame the teen for not getting help after that, he just wished he could have at least come to him to have a place to stay and not have to sleep in the streets for three fucking years.
Touya took a long breath, he looked down bracing himself to calm himself, Aizawa got closer rubbing small circles on his back, encouraging him to continue.
“After he…after he seemed pleased with all the threats and making sure that I wouldn’t say a word to anyone, I ran to my room and got a couple of clothes and my phone, he dragged me out of the house before I could have the chance to gather some food or money. I had to steal food for months so I wouldn’t starve to death.”
“That kid saved my life ‘Zawa,” the other said with a fond expression before his eyes darkened, “I’m not sure what would have happened if he hadn’t found us that day, I was beginning to lose hope, Himiko as well.”
Their situation was precarious when they were living on the streets, not only did they have to steal food, but Touya would always have to give his blood to Toga so she wouldn’t lose her sanity, she would be stable for a week or so after a dose, but stealing needles was pretty hard and sometimes she would have to hold herself back from snapping. Their situation was precarious, she was scared all the time and would freak out at any sudden movement or noise, paranoia consumed them both since that one time that a creepy rapist tried to get his way with the blonde.
They were just done with having to live like that, never being able to sleep without fearing that something may happen, starving every single day with no hopes of the next day getting better. They were just starting to give up and when that Shigaraki guy offered them to join their “League of Villains” and offered their base for them to live, they were tempted to accept for a moment, but before they could make any drastic decisions…their Hero came to save them.
Touya looked at the greenette smiling brightly far away, he still can’t believe that verdant teen gave them so much without them asking, it got his hopes up that there are people out there that have a golden heart.
Aizawa monitored the other’s expression, he felt the corner of his mouth quirking up at seeing the fondness the other’s eyes held as he looked at the greenette, he needed to thank that kid for giving Touya a place to stay.
“I see…are you going to stay with them?”
The teen spent a moment in pensive silence before speaking his thoughts. “We want to, but…” He sighs tiredly “We know their financial situation isn’t the best, there is no way that they can keep sustaining the both of us, the kid’s mom has already spent a lot of money on us, Izuku said he wants to get a job to help out, but to be honest I don’t think he should be working so young just because of us, especially when he is still in school.”
He wanted to get a job to help them out, but, he has been trying for the last three years and had no success on it, nobody wanted to hire him because of his scars.
“I wanted to try to find another place to stay, as much as I’m enjoying my time with them, I don’t want to bother them with extra expenses.” Of course he would pay them daily visits, he promised to train them after all and he really wants to keep up the sign language lessons from Miss Inko so he can communicate with Izuku.
“I’m not going to take Himiko with me though, she already sees Inko as a mother figure and treats Izuku like a little brother” He says that, but he feels the same, he had never felt so loved before, not even his siblings and his mom showed him so much affection and support. He more than anything wants to stay, however, one less person to feed would be considerably better for Miss Midoriya’s wallet.
The tired man eyed him with a pensive look, maybe this was a good time for him to act, before knowing about Todoroki’s “suicide”, he was considering some possibilities. “Touya…I want to make a proposition to you, are you willing to hear me out?”
The other blinked taken aback, Aizawa was looking at him dead in the eyes with a light of determination so strong that it shook him to his core. He gave the man a hesitant nod.
Aizawa coughed, scratching behind his neck awkwardly and looking away, was he…nervous? Touya arched a brow curious about what could possibly be what the man wanted to say that had the man act this flustered.
"So…Hisashi and I…we could be your legal guardians, I mean, it wouldn’t be hard to get you under my wing since I’m a Pro-Hero…” The man said almost as a whisper, his deadpan face cracking a bit with insecurity. “You wouldn’t have to worry about money or finding a place to live and we could keep you safe.” And if there was any miraculous doctor out there, maybe they could treat his scars.
Touya stared at him in disbelief, the pounding of his heart overtook reality, his mind churning and trying to process the words that came out from the man’s mouth.
As he snapped from his shock and his brain finally let the words sink in, he couldn't help but laugh from incredulously. "What!? Why-Why the hell would say that? Did you get soft, ‘Zawa? It seems like you mellowed out since I last saw you~" He said teasingly gaining a snort from the older man who hid his face in his scarf.
"I lost you once, I want to make sure I don’t lose you again kid... " Shouta said without hesitation. If he had the chance to get Touya out of Endeavor's care back then, he admitted to himself that it would be the only thing he wouldn’t hesitate about.
"I’m 19, ain’t a kid anymore you know?" The young adult said blankly trying to ignore the guilt he felt at what Shouta said. He knew his teachers would have welcomed him to their home without hesitation, but there would be too many questions, questions that he couldn’t answer without risking his siblings’ lives at the time. And the shame of being so weak, fear of having his father figure disappointed in him for letting himself get this hurt.
"You’re always going to be my problem child though, I couldn’t help you before, but I can now. I’m not going to let you disappear on me again, I want to keep you safe, to give you a place to call home.” The Pro Hero brought his hand to the boy's head, going through the now black soft hair like he always did when Todoroki was anxious or insecure about his potential.
“Hizashi and I always considered you our child anyways.” Aizawa muttered, he felt the boy's head shake under his hand.
"Wow... that was – so – holy shit old man, you are still living up to your title as Dadzawa, uh?" He tried to laugh it off but it came out as a weak sob instead, he wiped his coming up tears with the back of his hand but it was in vain.
Shouta wrapped his arms around the other’s shoulders and pulled the teen into him, burying his face on the black soft hair and gently rocking him back and forth slightly.
Touya gave in, hugging back the man and burying his face into Aizawa’s neck as he sobbed. The older man rubbed circles on his back as he whispered comforting words.
They kept like that for a good half hour and when Touya sobs started to lessen he tighten his embrace.
“Being an Aizawa sounds good,” He whispered.