If you asked him what his most important memory was, he would answer it was most certainly the summer festival 10 years ago.
A young, four year old boy was sleeping in his room, warm rays of sunlight coming from his window and kissing his tan and freckled covered face.
The child let out a disgruntled grown and burrowed himself within the cream colored sheets, trying to drown out the nagging voice.
He turned around and covered his ears with his fluffy pillow, not wanting to awakened from the sweet, sweet lull of sleep.
“Izuku! Wake up!”
The boy felt something jump on his mattress, definitely snatching him from the land of dreams. He bolted awake, confused eyes large with surprise, head turning left and right looking for the source of the new weight beside him. He heard a tinkling laugh and turned to see his young mother smiling at him with a tender tilt on her mouth and an amused spark in her lively green eyes.
“Izuku, have you forgotten what day it was?” She asked, getting off from the bed and walking to her son's closet, preparing the clothes he would be wearing today.
‘What day it was? Was it his mom's birthday? No, he would never forget that. But then what could it...Oh!’
“It's my birthday!” He exclaimed, with a kind of joy only a child could possess.
“Indeed it is! A very special boy was born on July 15th four years ago! Now, get up and come to the kitchen once you're ready, I've prepared a big breakfast for a big, courageous boy!” The petite woman said, ruffling her child's green hair and rubbing their noses together. She then walked out of the room, presumably going to the kitchen.
Izuku got up and dressed himself with haste, glancing at himself in the mirror trying to brush his lion's mane into submission but failing as always. Giving up quickly, he made his way to the kitchen, attracted to the smell of freshly baked bread and apple pie. He sat down on his chair, struggling for a bit because of his small size.
“Good morning Mom!” He said as took a slice of pie, mouth watering at the sweet scent. His mom really was the best.
“Good morning Izuku, can you guess what's happening tonight?”
The child tilted his head to the side, furrowing his brows. Suddenly, a wide smile emerged, as his viridescent eyes shone with incredible joy.
“Is Papa finally coming home!?” He asked, body lurching forward and tapping against the table in his excitement.
The woman named Inko gave a sympathetic smile, sadness making her eyes crink.
“No sweetheart, he isn't. But…” She said, her smile turning more real as she searched for something in her pocket.
“Aha! Here Izuku, Papa sent this just for you.” She handed him a letter smelling of petrichor and smoked wood, just like his father.
He anxiously snatched it from his mother's hands and opened it as fast as he could.
“ Izuku, you're turning four today, and it saddens me that I couldn't accompany you in this special occasion. After all, one can only become four years of age once. Please, remember that even if it's not possible as of yet to return to your mother and you, my child, I am and always will be incredibly proud of you. Now, I heard from your mother that you're becoming quite an intelligent boy. As such, on this day, my gifts to you are this notebook and these ink bottles, so that you may try to satiate your infinite curiosity and write down whatever idea crosses your mind.
P.S. Don't despair my child, we may see each other sooner than you think.”
Izuku then lifted his head only to see a basket containing a leather bound notebook with white, shiny dots sprawled across the cover, resembling a starry sky, as well as three inkwells. The assortment of inks could only be described as magical . The first bottle contained ink the color of midnight, with streaks of royal blue and sapphire spiraling like a galaxy; while the second was full of an amethyst colored liquid, delicate lavender swirling around with a bit of petal soft pink and a silvery shine. The third, however, was the one that hypnotized him the most, bringing tears to both his and Inko’s eyes. It was green. The green found in verdoyant forests found in the fairytales his mother read to him, the color of the grass during the summer when he run up to the hills with his friends as the sun beamed on his face, the color of his mother's jade eyes as she put him to bed, of his father's emerald ones as he taught him about the world. It was green, the first color he saw in the mirror when he woke up and the last one he saw before going to sleep. And it was perfect.
“Oh dear, now I don't know if you're gonna want my present.” Inko said, pressing a tissue against her teary eyes.
Izuku looked at her and said: “Of course I wanna see yours Momma! But you didn't need to get me one, Momma still being here is the best present!”
Inko took her son into her arms, thanking whatever deity had helped her raise such a wonderful son.
“Well let's show it to you then.” She said as she searched for something under the table. After looking around for some time she finally got up, holding out a wooden box for Izuku to take. He opened it and found all sorts of tailoring supplies, as well as a few paper sheets with patterns drawn on them.
“It may not be not be as amazing as your father’s gift but you said you wanted to help me around the tailor’s shop so I-” The young woman started before being interrupted by her son bolting from his chair and hugging her legs. A chime was heard coming from the grandfather clock downstairs.
“I love it!” Izuku said, disentangling his hands from his mother’s skirt. Inko just ruffled his hair as she responded:
“Well look at that, it’s almost the time to open the shop. Tell you what, how about you go upstairs and redraw the patterns in your father’s notebook to start memorising them while I work, and once I’m finished we’ll go to the summer festival in Harian, huh?”
“We’re going to the festival Mommy!?” The child asked to what his mother answered:
“Yes we are. Now come on, go to your room and enjoy your presents, I’ll call once the shop closes.” And the child went running back to his room, baket in one hand, box in the other, giggling all the way. Inko just walked downstairs, sighing as she prepared herself for yet another day of work.
A few hours later, the sun started to set, marking the beginning of twilight. Inko closed the door and leaned on it, relieved that she was finished for the day. She went upstairs to prepare, calling Izuku and telling him to be ready to leave shortly. Once they got out of the house, they encountered the blacksmith and his daughter, a little girl around Izuku’s age with purple hair, the same color as the crown made out of irises she wore, clad in a floaty white dress. The blacksmith, a man with a tough looking face and a resilient build, approached, holding his daughter’s hand with his own big one and lifting the other in greeting.
“Hey, Ms Midoriya, Izuku, how are you?” The man asked as he finally put his hand down and on the girl’s shoulder.
“We’re fine Mr Hagakure, thank you for asking. We were just just heading to the summer festival to celebrate Izuku’s birthday.” The green eyed woman answered while her son looked at the little girl with curious eyes. He had seen the blacksmith before when he visited the village close to his home but he never actually met or even noticed his daughter before. Which he found quite strange seeing as she was really vibrant and eye-catching, with her iris colored hair and glinting yellow eyes. And if the broad movements she made with her arms when she greeted them were any indication, she was probably very bubbly and liked to call attention to herself. Why then was she so mysterious?
The green haired boy was taken out of his musings by the girl quite literally shoving a flower crown made of blue larkspurs to his face. Confused, he looked up at her only to be handed the cyan ring once more.
“Everyone has to wear a flower crown to the festival silly, it’s a tradition! Here, today’s your birthday isn't it? Well, larkspurs are July’s month flower so they’re perfect for you! ” She exclaimed with a high-pitched voice as she apparently decided she had enough of waiting for the boy to catch up and simply put the crown on his head. Once she was satisfied with her work, she stepped away and nodded to herself. Izuku chose not to question it and instead lifted his head only to see that his mother had already been gifted a crown of vibrant marigolds that complimented her skin complexion and brought out her eyes while Mr Hagakure was wearing hot pink dahlias resembling pom-poms scattered across his ebony black hair. The freckled child tried and failed to keep his child-like giggles in check, placing his hand in front of his mouth to muffle them. The blacksmith just sighed, hand passing through his hair as he said:
“Please forgive Tooru. This the first time we go to the festival and she’s just really excited.”
“Of course I am Daddy, I’ve been waiting for this for weeks! Come on, I want to eat some baked strawberries!” The yellow eyed girl said, taking her father’s hand and dragging him towards Harian’s gateway, leaving the Midoriyas alone once more. From here he could distinguish the faint sound of traditional music, golden light dancing to the beat of the drums, accompanied by the sharp and clear sway of violins and the gentle pulse of a guitar’s cords. As they got closer to the entrance, Izuku noticed an array of small shops, handcrafted jewels reflecting rays of bright blue and warm orange. There were also stands selling food that gave off a delicious scent. Hundreds of people flooded the street in a crowd of swaying dresses, sliding feet and dancing flower crowns.
“Well, Izuku, Mommy is gonna go look at some showcases to find materials for the shop. Do you wanna come with me or are you gonna go explore on your own?” Inko asked while she was looking at some yellow cloth.
“Can I go eat some roast pistachio-stuffed peaches?” Her son said, already salivating at the thought of the savory treat.
“Of course! Just be sure to come back before midnight, I’ll be over here waiting for you.” The petite woman responded in between slight laughs as she handed him some coins.
“Thanks Mom!” And he went in search of his delicious food.
Izuku strolled through the street, pavestones lightning at his feet, nose ready to catch and follow the scent trail of sweet peaches. He walked in between the legs of the passerby, tripping a few times. Finally, he caught the smell of roasted pistachios and and went after it. Just as we was passing through an alleyway, he heard:
“You there boy, don’t you wanna buy a magic book?”
He turned his head around, green hair flopping, and he saw a figure clad in inky black robes, deep mauve and rich scarlet thread lining the flowing fabric. A shiny ebony collar enveloping and covering their broad shoulders, cold metal glinting and reflecting the soft light streaming into the alleyway. Finally, a pointed hat accompanied by an eye-shaped mask with dark purple fringes hanging from it. The unsettling and frankly just mask stared right at him as the stranger took out a thick-covered book from between the folds of his cloak.
Izuku, letting his curiosity get the best of him and feeling strangely safe around this mysterious person-man, if he were to decide based upon his voice- decided to ask:
“Magic?” Big green eyes opened far and wide, confused at the mention of such a thing.
“Magic is the miracle that colors the world, flourishes within every flower, flows through every stream of water, glides within each and every creature. It is the miracle that lights the pavestone beneath your feet and makes the world plentiful for us.”
Suddenly the world seemed to become sharper, clearer to Izuku. The colors were brighter, the sounds were more piercing, the smells more tangible. He could feel the threads connecting reality, tangling together and intertwining in a miriad of knots.
“Can you teach me!?” The child plead, freckled hands closed in tight fists, body motioned forward, hoping to find more about this ‘magic’.
“I am unable to stay for much longer boy. If you want, I can give you this book and this magic wand, so that you may discover the wonders surrounding you.”
The concealed man handed the items to the viridian haired child. He eagerly took them and went running to his mother, wanting to tell her what he had found. As he was trudging through the busied streets, he realised he had forgotten to pay the disguised person-probably a mage- for his things. However, when he returned to the alleyway the man was already gone without a trace. He returned to the plaza where his mother was waiting for him to tell her what had happened and how he desired to be a mage when he was older.
“Oh, Izuku...Magic users are called witches and only those born with the ability are able to control magic.” Inko said with a sad look in her eyes.
“But Mommy look! I can make the ground shine where I walk.” He lifted his leg, a finger pointing to the pavestone in confirmation.
Inko put an arm around her son’s shoulders and answered:
“Tell you what Izuku? If the ground is still shining once we’re out of Harian, then I will find someone that can teach you magic. Okay?”
The toddler just nodded and smiled as he took off, wanting to show his mother how he too could become a witch. Sadly, once they left the village, the ground stopped gleaming, and the bright smile Izuku had on his face went away as he realised he would never be able to use magic. And that’s how both of them made their way back to the tailor’s shop, a mother embracing her child as tears run down his face, buried in darkness.