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I'd Rather

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In a society where brute strength and one’s power was applauded, it was a false consensus that the strong were the ones to stand tall within the fires of chaos, while the weak were to stay hidden away, safe. With this way of thinking implanted with the minds of the masses, it was by society’s unspoken rule that he, an Omega, the delicate flowers of their society, was to stay locked away within his house, protected by his family, that he remain tied to his soft-spoken, Omega mother’s apron strings, but with a father like his, a power-hungry and ambitious man striving to be number one, and a quirk as strong as his, Shouto was made to be in those fires alongside the Alphas and Betas society deemed strong – the little Omega, only eight years of age, dodges the incoming punch from his father, his heterochromatic eyes trained on his old man as he moves to throw another punch.

When his father had learned that he was an Omega, well, his reaction was rather lackluster compared to what it could have been, he’d been upset, sure, furious even, but the resolve he had on making Shouto the number one hero seemed to strengthen, his training regimens taking on a stricter route, they were more punishing, more brutal, less time to regroup. There were times when the little Omega was sure he would drop dead from the sheer exhaustion alone.

A large fist connects with his gut, the force of the hit sends him sprawling onto his back, the breath knocked from his lungs and limbs refusing to move, no matter how much he would like to curl in on himself and sleep, he has to concentrate on keeping the bile beginning to rise at the back of his throat at bay, his eyes are so closed, so he doesn’t see his father, but he knows the man looms over him, still as unimpressed with what little improvement he’s making.

“Get up, Shouto.”

Swallowing hard, he breathes through his open mouth to steady himself, and forces his body to move, despite its horrendous shaking. Apparently, he takes too long for the Alpha’s liking, the man letting out an annoyed growl that reverberates through the training room, the sound is harsh and drips with danger, it makes Shouto flinch, his limbs giving out from the sudden anxiety of being near an angry Alpha such as his father. This just upsets the hellfire quirk user even more, the man starts to turn away, that same growl in his voice as he sneers.

“You’ll never be number one if you keep bowing to that instinct of yours.” he starts to walk out of the room, throwing a callous after thought over his shoulder, “You best get to bed, it’s past your curfew.”

And with that, the man is gone, but while he may not be there physically, the child can still sense him within the room, and it does little to help with his stupid instincts demanding he bow to the superior rank. Annoyance is what finally pushes him to get his body back under control, he hobbles to his room and flops ungracefully onto his futon, his muscles giving out underneath him, his body too exhausted to rearrange itself underneath the comfort of the covers, too hurt – with a father like his, a man with the power and influence to pull strings, Shouto was slated for the hero track whether he wanted to be or not, and he wanted, he wanted to be the type of hero that his mom would be proud of, the type of hero his father isn’t, and he was going to be doing things on his terms, rather than his damned old man.

oOo

The first time an Alpha had tried to pull rank on him was when he was in Junior High – it was the last year and the last week, he would be graduating, aiming for U.A High after this, his peers knowing that not only was his quirk powerful, but he was an Omega as well, he made no efforts to hide his scent marker, of course there was talking behind his back, but none had the backbone to say it to his face, too afraid of him, or rather the male populace was, their female counterparts swooned over him, both sides unaware that he could care less.

As it was, the young Omega was making his way towards the nearest convenience store closest to the school, well within eyesight, and looking to procure himself a snack that was often denied to him while within his father’s gaze. No one bothered him, most knew him as Endeavor’s kid, and who would want the wrath of the number two hero on them for soliciting his Omega child. The bastard playing the part of the protective Alpha parent well and tricking everyone into thinking he cared. Because of this, Shouto wonders if he should have known there were people out there who weren’t as afraid of his father as most seemed to be, such as the strange Alpha that walked out from around the corner of the building, his shoulders hunched, head ducked, his hair greasy and shoulder length, he were a tan overcoat that stopped at his knees and a matching hat, he looked shady, the fire-and-ice user wondering why he thought the getup was of any use, after all, he was getting strange looks from the people passing by.

“Hey kid,” the man says, stopping in front of Shouto, and therefore stopping Shouto himself, “I need your help with something, just down the alley, let me lead the way.”

And Shouto just stares, the least the man could have done was come up with a better excuse, “I’m sure there’s someone more qualified to help you than a school kid, such as the police, or perhaps a hero.”

The man’s brow ticks in annoyance, it’s obvious that his eyes narrow behind the dark lenses of his sunglasses, his shoulders hunching up to his ears, “I said: come with me.”

It’s immediately noticeable that the man had just used his Alpha voice, a certain tone that gets the lesser ranks to listen and do as they say, and while it did surprise Shouto enough for him to show it, as well as those walking past them, the Omega is more surprised when he doesn’t feel the need to do as he’s told. There was no sudden anxiety rushing through him like he gets when his father uses that same exact voice, in fact, this man’s Alpha voice wasn’t as intimidating or scary, he was immune to the voice, his Omega mind deeming this Alpha not as big a threat, and Shouto isn’t sure if he should be grateful to his old man or not for this newfound skill.

The man looks just as surprised as Shouto feels, his eyebrows twisted in confusion and mouth slightly agape.

“Excuse me,” someone says, both Shouto and the strange Alpha turning to look at them, “Is this man bothering you?”

Shouto has gathered his wits long before the man, “He wants me to follow him into an alley.”

As soon as the sentence leaves his mouth, the strange Alpha immediately turns on his heel and runs down the alley he’d tried to lure Shouto in, the bystander who’d interrupted his poorly thought out plans staring after him with eerie eyes. The man is wearing a dark pullover, the hood pulled over his head, hiding black, spiked hair, he’s wearing a white surgical mask, piercing blue eyes peering over it, he’s wearing black jeans, ripped at the knees, and black boots.

“That man, I think I’ve seen him around.” the bystander says, Shouto looks up at him, “I’ll have to pay him a visit later on.”

Shouto then starts for the store’s front door, the man following close, “Is it really wise for you to be so close to the school?”

The man huffs, “Do you really have so little faith in my abilities to remain undetected, Little Todoroki Shouto?” he nudges Shouto as they walk down the aisle where the candies are located, when Shouto turns, he sees several bills in the man’s hand, “Here.”

Shouto takes the money, “What should I do with this?”

“Buy yourself something nice.”

The Omega resists the urge to snort, “Gee, thanks.”

The blue-eyed Alpha huffs a quiet, raspy laugh, “You know I love to spoil my baby brother.”

“By providing me with the money to: satisfy my junk-food addiction.”

Touya huffs, “He still spewing that shit?”

“When he catches me.”

“Some things never change, huh.”

The bi-color haired male grabs a package of sour gummies and heads for the counter, his older brother trailing after him as they make small talk about their respective lives. It’s when they’re leaving, that they both spot the sleek, black vehicle parked in front of the school, the very same one that was there to pick Shouto up and shuttle him home.

“If something happens,” Touya starts, “Feel free to come to me.”

Shouto looks at his big brother, “I wouldn’t even know how to contact you.”

“Just assume I’m always watching.”

“Creepy.”

“Brat.” Touya snorts, he shoves Shouto forward, “Get going, before a search party is sent.”

Despite not knowing one another all that well when they lived under the same roof, the eldest Todoroki sibling had made his way back home one night, having returned with the sole purpose of burning their father’s empire to ashes, but then a little Shouto had come into his path, bruised and bandaged, he had glimpsed at the older and conjured up little shards of ice, prepared to defend himself. The sad sight he must have made was perhaps the reason Touya’s plans shifted, he had helped Shouto to his room and cared for his wounds, and they had just – clicked. A bond forming between the two brothers. Now Touya took on the role of a protective, Alpha sibling, the oldest at that, and Shouto appreciated that, what with Natsuo being gone, Fuyumi attempting to play peacemaker, and their mother in the hospital, it was nice to have someone in their family solely on his side, knowing what their father’s favoritism awarded them with.

The next morning, there is report on the news of a man being burned alive sometime last night, the motives for the gruesome murder are unclear, but according to the autopsy, the man had suffered harsh torture, the remains bones showing deep cuts and fractures not caused by fire. A part of Shouto should feel bad, seeing as how he knew who the probable suspect behind the murder was, but the man sort of deserved it, after all, who knew how many others he’d approached in the same manner, how many had succumbed to his Alpha voice and did as he asked. The thought of it makes him shiver in disgust.

“So,” Fuyumi starts, emerging from the kitchen with plates of breakfast in each hand, one for her and one for Shouto, “I hear you’ll be called in to U.A for some sort of test, are you nervous?”

“It’s a test to see if I really am fit for the recommendation.” Shouto watches his sister set a plate in front of him, he stares at the food as he says, “I know I’ll pass, so this is all meaningless.”

Fuyumi blinks, “Oh, that’s such a – that’s good? To know you have such confidence in yourself?”

Shouto finally grabs his chopsticks, “Whatever. Where’s dad?”

“He had to work late, so he stayed at his office. Why?”

“I’m just wondering how long I’ll have peace.”

Fuyumi just purses her lips in response.

Finishing his breakfast, the heterochromatic-eyed boy decides to return to his room, seeing as how it was a weekend and he had nothing better to do, but once he enters his room, he spots something peculiar lying on the pillow of his futon. Curious, the ice-and-fire user approaches the futon carefully until he’s a foot away, the object sitting innocently upon his pillow is a phone, attached to that phone is a piece of paper. Picking the device up, he grabs the note and reads it, it’s from Touya.

Here you go, Brat.

Lighting the paper on fire, he dumps the ashes in the trash and opens the phone, it’s new, and with a number already programmed within it – well, he did need a new phone, and this was definitely better than assuming Touya was watching, which was still a creepy thought, he was pretty sure the older male just said that to mess with him though. Sitting on his futon, he takes his old phone and starts putting his old contacts in, not that there was much to begin with.