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Uravity Falls

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Chapter 1: Sauntering Vaguely Downwards

"There's someone you like, right~?"

That question had been echoing in Ochako Uraraka's mind for days on end.

"There's someone you like, right~?"

True, the girl who asked it was disturbed… okay, crazy… okay, psychotic. Just the thought of that girl made Ochako sick. Toga giggled and squealed and declared herself "friends" with poor Tsuyu and babbled about intimate, private things, all while trying to murder her and Tsuyu both.

Psychotic she was… but she wasn't wrong.

"There's someone you like, right~?"

The question came to mind yet again as Class 1-A filed out the double doors of Heights Alliance on their way to the new semester's opening ceremony. Or rather, Class 1-A minus two… Deku and Bakugou were staying behind, under house arrest for the fight they had the night before. Ochako cast a long look over her shoulder back at them as the group made their way across the courtyard. Both boys were vacuuming the floors at the moment, Deku doing so quietly and without fuss, and Bakugou… not. He hadn't blown anything up yet, so that was progress, she supposed.

Deku was in bandages, again. Thankfully not in critical condition like the aftermath of the training camp, but no matter how many times she saw him bruised, broken, and beat up—and that had happened so many times that she had lost count—she never, ever got used to it.

"I love people who are beat up and smell like blood…!"

Gah. Ochako stopped in mid-step and shook herself, her stomach turning. Her skin wanted to crawl off and hide in a corner somewhere, as it did every time she thought about that girl. Ochako thought of herself as an empathetic person, able to understand most people's feelings pretty well… but there was no understanding Toga, a girl so divorced from normal human feelings and behavior that she thought blood and pain and suffering were attractive. More than that, they made her excited. Disgusting. Sick, depraved, and disgusting.

Better not to think about Toga. She wasn't the problem, anyway.

The problem, if one could call it that, was Deku. During the Provisional License Exam, when saw that girl from Shiketsu all over him… something in her burned hotter than Todoroki's flames, a vehement, bitter anger that was totally unlike her. She decided back then that she couldn't allow Deku to distract her, much as she cared about him… much as she…

Much as she…

Blood rushed to Ochako's cheeks. It was a good thing she was lagging behind the rest of her classmates; she had a feeling that she was glowing like a neon sign.

Much as she liked him.

She liked Deku.

There, that was it. She thought it, and sky didn't fall, the ground didn't open up to swallow her whole… though the thought was tempting. Ochako buried her burning face in her hands. The soles of her shoes left the ground by a few centimeters.

"Ochako-chan?" Now Tsuyu was hanging back. She tilted her head to one side and blinked her wide, froggy eyes. "Are you okay?"

"I-I'll be fine, Tsuyu-chan, just fine. I was just… thinking about something."

"You're floating a little."

Observant as ever, that one. "Release," said Ochako, prying her hands away and pressing the pads of her fingers together. Her personal gravity reasserted itself, and her soles fell back to the pavement with a soft click.

"There's someone you like, right~?"

Yes, the phantom Toga was right. She liked Deku.

Much as she tried to suppress those feelings and focus on her duties as a student and a hero-in-training, they always floated back up… just like those wooden blocks back in elementary school, back when she was first getting the hang of her Quirk. How she remembered those blocks, worn and scratched but still chunky and colorful, and how much fun it was to make them fly just by touching them… but then, the other boys and girls wanted to play with them too. Ochako would grab the floating blocks out of the air with her chubby little toddler fingers and press them down into the waiting palms of the other kids… and they would always, always float right back up as soon as she let go. More than one kid cried when that happened… and she would cry, too, because they were crying and she hated seeing anyone upset.

Much like she hated seeing Deku hurt.

Much like she hated seeing Deku being pawed at by that Shiketsu girl.

It was a vicious circle: sooner or later, all thoughts led back to Deku. Her feelings would float back up again, like those wooden blocks long ago.

Something had to be done. She liked Deku, and something had to be done about it… but this was uncharted territory for her, a scary new frontier riddled with traps and pitfalls. Much too scary to face alone. She needed help. She needed someone to talk to, someone who could help her deal with all of this. For her own sake, for Deku's sake, and for the sake of their careers, something had to be done.

Who to talk to, though? Tsuyu? Tsuyu was her best friend at U.A., Tsuyu would understand… but much as she adored her, Tsuyu didn't exactly seem like the type to give relationship advice. The thought of having to confess her feelings while Tsuyu stared at her, blinking those big froggy eyes, made her feel weird. Weird, and guilty, for there was no logical reason to feel that way.

Momo? Momo was from a super-rich, high-class family. Surely she had some dating experience, right? However, though Momo was unfailingly nice to all her classmates, there was a distance between them that Ochako wasn't comfortable with. Maybe it was because she was from a super-rich, high-class family… they wouldn't have any point of common reference.

That left Kyoka, Toru, and Mina as the only other girls in Class 1-A. Kyoka was quiet, moody, and easily embarrassed, so that was out. Toru and Mina both had the opposite problem… if she went to them with her secrets, they would remain secrets for approximately thirty seconds before their delighted squealing spilled the beans to the rest of the dorm. How an invisible girl could be so catastrophically bad at keeping secrets was a question for the ages, but Toru was out. Mina was only a little better at it.

So who was left?

She needed someone who knew Deku and knew him well. Someone who could at least steer her in the right direction. Someone—

Oh no.

Just like that, she had her answer. It was a terrifying answer; the prospect was probably more dangerous that facing down a whole building full of Rank-A villains, but it was an answer. There was really only one person she could talk to… God help her.

Later That Day

"You have a crush on WHO?!" Katsuki Bakugou roared in her face, his sharp crimson eyes wild with disbelief.

Once again, Ochako hid her face in her hands… fists, actually. Floating again would only make this more awkward. If that was even possible. "Bakugou-kun, if you could please keep it down a little?"

"Are you fucking shitting me?! HIM?!" Bakugou stormed around the courtyard to the accompaniment of pops and crackles from his fingertips. Thank God the others were still at the ceremony… the only one still at the dorm was Deku, and he was occupied cleaning the bathrooms. The soundproofed bathrooms… part of the dorms' numerous anti-Mineta countermeasures. Even so, she was surprised that all of Musutafu couldn't hear Bakugou carrying on.

"Look, Bakugou-kun, m-maybe this was a bad idea," she said, her heart sinking as she turned to leave. "I'll… I'll just go. Pretend this never happened."


"Eep." Ochako froze in place.

Heavy footsteps stomped up behind her. That pungent burnt sugar smell that always followed Bakugou like a cloud wafted over her shoulder and into her nostrils. She tried desperately not to sneeze… knowing Bakugou, he would think she was mocking him and blow her up. Maybe he would anyway.

"Listen to me, dammit." A finger jabbed her in the back, hard. His voice was even harsher and gravelly-er than normal. "If you tell anyone, anyone that I'm helping set you up with that goddamn shitty nerd… I'll kill you. I'll kill the shit out of you."

Ochako wasn't sure she heard correctly. "Buh," she said, which was more articulate than she thought she could manage. "B-Bakugou-kun…?"

"Don't get the wrong idea, dammit!" Hot breath blasted the back of her neck. "I ain't doing this for Deku. You did good at the Sports Festival, and I owe you for that… and both of you are too goddamn stupid to hook yourselves up. That's all. If you think for one second that I'm going soft—"

"... you'll kill me?"

"Goddamn right. Tomorrow, after class. On the roof. If you're late, I'll find you. And then I'll kill you."