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Regenerate, Fate

Chapter Text

At the ripe old age of four, Mikumo learned something.

 

Not everyone was born equal.

 

His quirk never manifested, and the doctors told him that no matter how hard he hoped, it most likely never would. That day when Midoriya Inko brought little Mikumo home from the clinic, she let the child hide into his room so she could discuss things with her spouse. The look on Hisashi’s face was blank as she quietly spoke. She didn’t know what to think of it.

 

The next morning Mikumo woke up earlier than he wanted to. The time he cried himself to sleep the day before must’ve thrown off his sleep schedule for the day. He slipped out of his room, expecting at least one of his parents to be up. Instead he saw something that made him wonder if he was still asleep. It was a note on the fridge.

 

“He’s bad for business.” It said. The sight of it made Mikumo’s heart race. He scrambled into his parent’s room, only finding his mom sleeping soundly. He ran back out to look at the note again, only this time he noticed their front door being slightly open. He didn’t even bother closing the door all the way, Mikumo thought.

 

His mom did a well enough job hiding her grief in front of him, but her still heard her own sobs late at night.

 

Life couldn’t have been worse for them… Can it?

 


 

 

It was 8 later. Mikumo had been running late, due to the usual bullying he endured. He strolled up the street towards his own apartment complex. He sniffed the air, smelling smoke. His eyes trailed up to constant stream of it coming from a building. Wait a second, that’s MY building! Mikumo sprinted home, up the stairs and directly into his apartment. He reeled back as flames threatened to consume him.

 

“Mom?!” He called, frantically letting his eyes take in all information. She was nowhere to be seen. He moved towards the burning apartment, covered his mouth with the collar of his shirt. He’s seen a few pros instruct victims to do this, so it must be a good thing. What had started the fire? His mom was always so good about kitchen safety! What he does notice terrifies him.

 

All the fire seems to have started at a certain height. More specifically, the height of his father. He pushes away the vile thought as he continues searching for his mother. He opened the door to her bedroom, and vomited.

 

There was his mother alright, charred and burned and broken. His mind went into overdrive, thinking that no, it can’t possibly be her. His thoughts running a million different scenarios that could’ve happened. All thoughts came to a sudden holt when his eye caught the shine of her wedding ring on her finger. It confirmed it was her. His mother was dead. There was nothing for him here. He moved to get out of the burning apartment, when he got distracted by a large creaking sound.

 

The building crashed on him before he could even plant a foot down to run.

 

The fire kicked up, and consumed the wood on the support beams that pinned him down. He screamed for dear life, until his voice became rough and strained. No matter how hard he screamed, it did nothing to stop the flames that consumed him as well.

 


 

 

He wakes up with a strong inhale, as if his body was being jump started. It leads to him coughing violently and falling off the table. Wait, table? He looks around, now in a medical facility of some sort. He sees the metal table he was on, then his eyes settle on the medical tools next to it.

 

“Oh no.” He breathes. It’s a morgue. There’s nothing else it could be. He looks around for clues as to what happened, when he feels the sudden urge to vomit again. His mother’s corpse is on the opposite side of the room. Mikumo forces himself to look away from her. Her? It? How does one refer to a corpse-

 

He snaps out of it.

 

On the table with the tools, he sees a folder. Every possible thing that he can think of being in that folder makes him grow uneasy. In the end, he decides to snatch it and get it over with. It’s him. Photos of him, that is. If he were charred bbq like his mother, that is. He doesn’t understand what happened? He knows he burned to death shortly after his mother must have, but he can’t grasp why he’s no longer burned. If he didn’t know better, he’d say he’s actually feeling pretty good right now.

 

“Do I have a quirk…?” He wonders. There’s no way. What kind of cruel world would this be! To deem him quirkless and subject him to bullying. Being quirkless is the very reason he’s  in this situation to begin with! Yet here he is, looking as healthy as ever. Now that he thinks about it… He did always heal rather quickly from his classmates torment. Not once did it ever cross his mind that he had some kind of quirk.

 

I can’t stay here. He realizes upon seeing his time of death scrawled over a paper. There is, however, one majorly important detail that would hinder any escape.

 

He’s naked.

 

“My clothes either must’ve burned off, or have been removed in preparation for the autopsy. Wait. Ohmygoddidtheydoanautopsyonme-” Mikumo chokes, frantically searching for any evidence that they did. They must’ve taken that information with them to look over, he thinks. He raids the medical closets and cabinets for any scrap of clothing he can get his hands on. He finds scrubs and a white lab coat. Fighting through the guilt of theft, he packs a duffle bag he finds full of medical supplies he’ll surely need. There’s nothing else he’ll need right? Maybe there’s something useful- “Oh.” He hums thoughtfully. The wedding ring fits onto his index finger. He may not have the best feelings towards the man who gave this to her, but she loved it. He will too.

 

It doesn’t take much for Mikumo to escape through the window.

 

Mikumo is dead. At least, that seems to be the case legally. What does he even do now!? He doesn’t want to put up for adoption! What if the foster home he’s put into doesn’t approve of his drive to become a hero? What if he doesn’t get adopted because he’s quirkless!? Wait, he’s not quirkless anymore what does--

 

“Hey kid, sorry to interrupt your muttering but I need a suitable hostage. I’m sure you won’t mind.” Before Mikumo can think of an appropriate response, his throat is grabbed by a man with a knife. It seems his quirk gives him the appearance of a fish, but nothing useful in this situation.

 

“Sir, please let me go.” Usually Mikumo’s voice would stutter and tremble, or he’d tear up. Right now there was absolutely nothing. If anything, he was just tired. “I’m having a really bad day.”

 

“Don’t  try and be a hero, kid. I just need a hostage so I can get the money I need to live a good life.” They’re under a bridge, hidden by the shadows of the overpass.

 

“I’m not trying to be a hero. We’re where literally no one can see us so I don’t really see the point in a hostage being taken here.” The kid planned on sounding as calm as he could manage, but everything comes out in a blob of words.

 

“See,” The man laughs. “I was being chased. When they catch up you’ll be useful.” Comedically on cue, the sewer cap pops up into the air. From what, an increase in air pressure?

 

“HAVE NO FEAR.” The sewer yells.

 

“Oh my gosh.” Mikumo starts, watching the Symbol of Peace himself hurl himself out of the sewer and onto the pavement.

 

“BECAUSE I AM HERE!” He shouts. Mikumo swears that he can feel the vibration of his voice in his bones.

 

“Don’t come any closer!” The man presses the knife harder into the child's neck, but not enough to fully cut. “I have demands!”

 

“To hold a child hostage…. Are you crazy?” All Might asks with a serious tone. “No matter.” The man moves sooner than All Might hopes. He panicked, Mikumo thinks as the man swipes the blade across his throat. He feels bad for the blood spurt staining All Might’s white shirt.

 

All Might is fuming.

 

Fuming? Mikumo thinks it’s more like steam coming off of his body.

 

His body hits the ground with a thud, and in less than five seconds, the villain hits the ground beside him.

 

“Young man, I will call for help! I’m so sorry that I couldn’t save you.” Couldn’t save him? That’s right, he slit Mikumo’s throat open. The boy sits up, feeling that there is no longer a wound. He feels fine.

 

“Don’t call for help, I’m okay!” Mikumo gets up. I’m in shock. My favorite hero ever! The fanboy in him is ready to faint.

 

“Young man!” All Might rushes over. “Gave me quite a scare there!” All Might gives a heart-filled laugh, cut off by a coughing a fit and a handful of blood. It has to be shock. I’d be crying and asking if he were alright.

 

“Sorry.” He says sheepishly. He has so many things weighing on his mind, so many questions he wants to ask. All of them are interrupted by All Might throwing the villain over his shoulder, ready to leave. “Can I ask you a question before you go?” He barely manages to mutter.

 

“Of course, young man!”

 

“Can I be a hero without a quirk? Or with a useless one?” The last question he adds quickly, remembering that he now has one.

 

“Useless quirk?”

 

“That man killed me. It was brief but it happened. I have…” The knife wound healed itself, along with other injuries he’s had growing up. Even if he never noticed it. “A regeneration quirk of sorts.” All Might seems to think of what to say.

 

“Young man, while that’s a great quirk for you to have as self defense, I don’t see how it could be used to help others. If you didn’t use a quirk to be a hero, then there's only one answer.”  No… “You cannot be a hero.”

 

“Oh.” His number one hero shatters his dream after he went through the death of his mother. He should feel awful, sad, broken. He doesn’t, though. He feels something like anger, but not quite.

 

“For the report, I need a name.” All Might awkwardly asks, realizing what he’s made of the conversation. A name?

 

Mikumo thinks back, recalling a conversation he had with his mother. When picking a name for when he was born, they were always tied between two. Mikumo won, and was his father's favorite. The other name was one his mother really wanted.

 

“Izuku.” He gives.

 

Chapter Text

Izuku looks over the edge of the building, watching as the officers in the street try and figure out how he escaped the car. He holds back a laugh as Tsukauchi pinches his nose in frustration. Izuku reaches into his pocket and pulls out an airhorn. He stands tall on the rooftop and holds it up in the air, pressing the button. He can’t help but laugh at everyone who startles. Tsukauchi slowly looks up with a tired expression.

 

“Love you Tsuki! HEY GUYS! He’s the best detective! He almost had me!” He screams, tossing the air horn straight into Tsukauchi’s hands. As Izuku turns around, he decides it best to greet his new friend. “Eraserhead! So are you trying to catch me because you’re assigned to catch me?”

 

“Why would that matter?”

 

“There’s a difference between a hero catching you because they think you’re bad, and a hero being told to chase after you hopelessly.”

 

“Hopelessly?” Eraserhead asks.

 

“If I didn’t know any better, I’d say that you’re smirking under all those scarves.” Izuku teases. “Catch me if you can, fuckboi!” He laughs, dodging Eraser’s scarf and dropping into the ally. He knows that Eraser can chase him as long as he keeps sight, so all he has to do is lose him. “Snap goes the ankle.” Izuku whispers in a sing-song tone, feeling his ankles snap with the force of his landing. He can run on broken ankles, not gracefully, but well enough.

 

The sudden pressure of having a pro assigned to him gives the whole vigilante thing a new meaning. While he’s not exactly sure what the meaning is yet, he does enjoy this change.

 

“Hey Eraser?” Izuku calls, well aware that the pro is close enough to hear him.

 

“What do you want.” There it is! The sound of someone slowly becoming out of breath.

 

“If I’m a vigilante because the laws against me, does that mean I’m closer to a villain if the pros are after me?” Dead end, Izuku thinks as he stops before the brick wall. He faces Eraserhead, quietly letting his eyes scan for a way out of this.

 

“I don’t know, are you a villain?” Under the man’s mask, Eraserhead swears he sees an eye twitch.

 

“I’d sooner die than be accused of being a villain.” Eraser charges at the kid, who swipes his legs out with a bo staff and quickly slams him into the ground. Shouta can’t recall the last time someone’s knocked the wind out of him.

 

“Where did you get a bo staff, Oni?” Shouta wheezes from the ground. The pressure in between his ribs is not pleasant. He silently wishes it was easy as asking ‘can you take that thing off of me and let me up?’ but Shouta knows that’s not the job he signed up for.

 

“Really, Eraser?” Izuku snorts. “I’m Oni, and this-” He lifts the staff up, as if calibrating it to strike. “-is my iron club.” Izuku brings the staff down and hits a pressure point. It’s not that he wanted to knock the hero out, he just wanted an escape.

 

In all honesty, he’s surprised it went as well. Running around all night with Eraser tailing him was on purpose. The hero would be easier to take down if he were tired. It’s just that this was…. Too easy. A sinking feeling in Izuku’s gut tells him to leave while he can.

 

Once home, he scales the side of his building and climbs in through the unlocked window, plopping down on his bed. He stares at the old All Might posters on his wall, a familiar feeling of anger filling his heart.

 

After the fire all those years ago, the building’s management decided it was too much of a hassle to fix the place up and sell it again. Something about a dead child who was most likely killed for being quirkless wouldn’t sit well with potential buyers. After learning more about the building, Izuku found that the apartments power can’t actually be shut off individually. Sure, a major fault when considering the possibility of someone not paying rent. For Izuku, as a person who is most definitely not paying rent, it was a beautiful thing that he didn’t think to question.

 

He sheds his costume, an all black suit with a green utility belt. The back has a space for his collapsible bo staff. Out of habit he reaches up and touches the smooth metal of his mother’s wedding ring that hangs around his neck. Since he’s lived in the same burnt down apartment, he’s had time to go over the crimes scene. Every sign he can think of points back to his father. According to all the files he’s gotten from the police, there’s no suspect. It’s been deemed an accident. He’s long lost faith in the police force and most heroes, seeing as they don’t even think to question that the autopsied corpse of a boy up and left with all their medical supplies.

There was never actually a need for the medical supplies. Well, not for him anyways. They were plenty help in emergency first aid to civilians. Izuku realized that his quirk was regeneration. It was missed because quirks were usually a mix of the parent’s or one the parent’s entirely. Who knew having a mutation in the way your quirk formed would lead to this mess of a life.

 

Izuku gets into the shower, co-washing his curls and scrubbing the grim off his skin. His body heals from everything, yet he has two scars. One is a scar that starts at the hairline and spreads over his left  eye, from the impact of the apartment’s support beam falling. The other is a large Y-shaped scar from the autopsy. All paths of theory lead back to the conclusion of them remaining as mental scars. Though he’s gone through plenty torment in his life, Izuku must admit that that day was the most scarring in every meaning of the word.

 

There’s no use thinking about it, he has an exam in the morning.


 

 

Aizawa Shouta wakes up with static in his head. It’s not a pleasant feeling, so he forces it out. Panic rises when he realizes he can’t see a thing but he settles when he realizes it’s a paper over his face.

 

“Sorry I couldn’t play longer, Eraser! I had an entrance exam tomorrow morning and I actually want some rest for once! I also didn’t stay because it was a little too easy to knock you out and it made me feel uneasy. Have a good night! -Oni.” Shouta blinks at the paper. I suspected it when I heard him speak. This vigilante is a kid! It seems that mentioning the entrance exams was a hint to his age. The detective told me he’s fond of playing games. He takes his goggles off and rubs his eyes. The brat told me to have a good night.

 

Once at home he looks up all local high schools that have their entrance exam tomorrow morning. While most of them take place in the same time of the year, not all of them are on the same day, in case people want to apply for more than one school. Shouta can’t help but give a deep sigh when he sees the only entrance exam tomorrow is UA. Of course it’s the only one tomorrow! Hero schools tend to have their own day so students can take them as well as exams for normal schools. If this kid gets in, there’s no telling what kind of hell would break loose.

 


 

 

Izuku stops a moment to take in the view of UA. It’s huge! Now being a rooftop hopping fanatic, he’d love to see the view from the edge. He starts walking, his steel-toed boots dragging a bit. Ah, so this is how I go, Izuki thinks as he trips over a rock. Luckily, a girl catches him.

 

“Release!” She breathes, connecting all five of her fingers together. “Sorry for using my quirk on you! It’d be bad luck to trip right before the exam, right?” She gives a smile, and Izuku politely says his thanks and watches as she pushes on into the exam.

 

Once seated, he almost feels the need to hold his breath. That’s Kacchan! Kacchan is sitting right next to him, but doesn’t seem to notice. Hopefully his green hair doesn’t give too much away.

 

It may be the years of torment, or the fact that I can no longer stand fire quirks, but I am really not enjoying being this close to Kacchan.

 

Izuku sits and listens as Present Mic himself explains the rules. The students have to destroy robots for points. That’s not fair. What about students that don’t have physical or combat-capable quirks? Let me guess, it’s ‘fair’ because they’ll be something else like points for saving people? For the sake of heroics they probably won’t tell us about it, leaving people at a disadvantage no matter how you look at it. When he gets in, he’ll be sure to complain until it’s changed.

 

Everyone is divided into different arenas, probably to allow more than a few students time to shine. There’s absolutely no way he didn’t pass the written exam, so now is where he might actually have to work. The girl who saved him from a face full of concrete is here, as well as the loud boy from the auditorium. Maybe I’ll just hang back here. He lingers towards the back of the crowd, waiting for the cue.

 

“Start!” Mic calls. He could’ve used an intercom of sorts, but he really hopes that Mic is just screaming from a rooftop somewhere. Okay, let’s get this over with.


 

 

In the observation room, many people have their eyes on future superstars.

 

“Examinee 4225 seems promising. His combat is unrivaled so far.” Ectoplasm notes.

 

“Katsuki Bakugou, quirk: explosion.” Nedzu hums. “This student has only combat points. One the other end of the spectrum is examinee 4224. They sat next to each other, coincidentally.” On the main screen, the teachers pull up examinee 4224. “Izuku Midoriya has more points than a good half of the students, but not a single combat point.” The screen shows Izuku looking around and pulling fellow test-takers out of harm's way or out of debris and rubble. A particularly large piece of metal falls, and Izuku tackles the student out of the way. Angry green eyes meet the camera, and all of the teacher seem to feel a chill run down their spine.

 

“Did he just glare at us?” Mic asks, leaning forward in his seat.

 

“Midoriya’s quirk is called Analysis. It does exactly as it sounds. There’s no way to tell what exactly is going through his mind…. Oh, he’s waving at us!” Nedzu squeaks in delight. “Zoom in!” It shows Izuku making a serious of hand gestures to the camera.

 

“‘This exam is unfair.’” Mic starts translating the sign. “‘This only benefits people with strong physical quirks, not people fit to be heroes. You didn’t even tell those of us at a disadvantage about the chance of points for helping peopl--’” Izuku’s rant is cut short as Nedzu hits the button to launch to zero pointers. The pros in the room laugh at the sigh Izuku gives before turning to face the monstrosity.

 

He turns to run, but stops when he hears a voice in pain.

 

“My, my. I wonder how he’ll act.” Nedzu chimes.

 

“What do you mean?” Midnight asks.

 

“His quirk makes him smarter than other contestants. He probably realized that if he ran and saved himself, we’d just have to stop the robots before it could kill the girl. Knowing the chances though. I think he’ll…” The rodent trails off, watching as Izuku is already in a sprint towards the robot. He grabs a large pole off the ground and keeps going.

 

Shouta stands a little straighter in the back of the room, his eyes on examinee 4224. He’s on high alert for Oni, and the fact that this kid picked up a pole raises suspicions. Then again, Oni wouldn’t have done something that would draw  eyes onto him like that.

 

He watches as the boy brings the pole up.

 

“He’s pole-vaulting to the robot?” Vlad king asks, worry seeping into his voice.

 

Izuku flies through the air, grabbing hold of the robots arm and climbing up with little trouble. Once on the flat base near the head, he pulls a panel off the robot and hops in. Shouta can tell that everyone in the room is holding their breath, waiting for literally anything to happen. The robot comes to a halt and he rolls his eyes at his cheering colleagues. It’s an exam, not a show! The leg of the robot is kicked out, a green-haired boy emerges.

 

“Looks like he got fried a bit.” Mic says softly.

 

The child walks over to the girl as the ending announcement is played. He retrieves the pole off the ground and points at a purple haired student.

 

“What are they doing?” Ectoplasm asks.

 

“He’s making a lever to get the debris off of her.” Shouta finally contributes. He gives the other student the pole and instructs him to shove it under the rocks at an angle. Meanwhile Izuku gets a rock and puts it in place as a fulcrum. The two boys exchange a few words and switch places. He lifted that rock with ease, kid must be strong. The lever gets pulled, lifting the weight off the girl so the other boy can pull her out. The kid is smart enough to know when you can’t help someone alone.

 

Shouta can’t help wonder if Oni was serious about the entrance exam. It’s not officially known what his quirk is. By the looks of it, a healing quirk of some sort but all suspicion of Midoriya dropped when his quirk was revealed.

 

Chapter Text

Apparently, faking an entirely new identity was a lot easier than Izuku expected. The easiest thing for him to forge was the quirk registration papers stating he had an analysis quirk. If he put anything near a healing or regeneration quirk, Eraserhead would probably be on his way to arrest him by now.

 

The exam was a few days ago, the results should have been sent out already. Why am I nervous? I know I’ll get in. So what’s going on? Maybe some patrolling would do me good. Patrolling, as if he were an actual hero.

 

He’s gotten good at spotting cameras and knowing which ones are currently active. People don’t think about the faint movement seen beneath the dark glass. Was my rant to the teachers too aggressive? Then again, I don’t know if they actually saw it.

 

Izuku goes into a quiet bookstore and heads straight for their bathroom, he changes into his Oni costume. The bathroom has an easy to unlock window, it’s just a matter of if he’ll be seen. In the stall, he ducks a bit and checks for any feet. No one in here. Gotta be quick about this. As soon as he opens the stall door he hops through the window. He lands into a puddle, splashing water onto his boots.

 

“I’m singing in the rain, just singing in the rain. What a glorious- Fuck.” Way to ruin my moment. Izuku turns and sees a boy in the alley. Even worse, there’s a girl on the ground. Her clothes are on, and nothing seems to have happened yet. If he chose a different bathroom or decided against patrolling, he would have been to late. “What are you doing?” Izuku waltz up to the boy. He’s barely taller than Izuku’s hip. The girl on the ground looks relieved at help.

 

“It’s not- Not what it looks like!....?” The boy’s shrill voice irks him.

 

“Can you get up?” He asks the girl on the ground. She shakes her head. Closer inspection reveals that purple balls holds her stuck to the ground. The same balls on the boys head. “Using a quirk for evil? Great.” Izuku moves to help the girl free, but the boy moves first.

 

“I’m not a villain! I’m just claiming my prize!”

 

“Your… prize? The fuck’re you talking about?” Izuku narrows his eyes at the boy, knowing the eyes on his mask will convey the same expression.

 

“You see, I took the UA entrance exam and I got in! So I just thought I should celebrate!” The results are out already!?

 

“Celebrate with?” Izuku tilts his head at the boy, who starts shaking a bit.

 

“You know, uh-”

 

“No, I can’t say I do.”

 

“What are you going to do with me?” This kid wants to be a hero? Gross.

 

“Let that girl go.” Before he finishes his sentence, the boy is already moving to let her free. She gets up and moves behind Izuku.

 

“Thank you so much.” She sniffles, ready to turn and run.

 

“Hold on a sec.” He turns to the boy. “Tell her your name so she can report you.”

 

“Uh-” Izuku takes a step forward. “Mineta! Mineta Minoru.” With that, the girl takes off. There’s a look in Mineta’s eyes, like he’s planning to escape for himself. Not so fast, you grape fucker. In a swift movement, Izuku lunges, grabbing on of Mineta’s arm in one hand and his neck in the other. He’s careful not to touch the purple things on his head just in case. He slams the side of the boys head on a nearby dumpster, dropping him when he’s unconscious.

 

If this scumbag somehow made it into UA I’d probably blow my cover just to bash his head in.  

 

Izuku looks around for any cameras, taking his phone out and accessing the feed. It’s a good thing he has two phones. The one he is currently using has had any and all GPS-based programs taken off of it by force. That, and this one has a phone number he’s made untraceable. Unfortunately, he’s never had to contact a pro or the police with it, so he has no way of knowing if he royally fucked up the programming. Time to find out. He scrolls through his collected contacts of heros and picks out Eraserhead.

 

Oni:

Look at this video I’m sending. This gross weirdo got into UA! This footage is from a security camera, I’ll send the address too.

 

Eraserhead:

Why are you sending ME this then? Actually, why do you have my number?

 

Oni:

I have your number for reasons like this. I’ll either let you guys handle this creep discreetly, or I’ll leak the footage and announce that he got into the best hero school around.

 

Eraserhead:

Sure, whatever. I must admit that you must feel confident in texting my personal number. You’re not scared of getting caught?

 

Oni:

Not particularly, no. I can’t say that I’m shaking in my lovely thigh-high boots, Eraser. Would you prefer that I message you on that messenger app all the hip kids use called Lik?

 

Eraserhead:

Yes actually. My name on it is Eraserhead.

 

Oni:

A name that MUST have been brought on in a stroke of genius I’m sure.

 

Izuku downloads the app, and adds Eraserhead after making a new profile.

 

Eraserhead:

Is that name really necessary?

 

Smol Might:

...Ya?

 

Eraserhead:

I never took you for an All Might fan.

 

Eraserhead’s #1 fan:

You’re entirely right, my man. All Might motivates me, but it’s all out of spite.

 

Eraserhead:

Change it.

 

Eraserheads #1 fan:

Why? I can hear you sighing in quiet frustration a mile away with this name!

 

Eraserhead:

I swear to god I’ll break every bone in your body if you don’t change it.

 

Okay, he doesn’t like having fans. Got it. Izuku now sits in the alley, watching Mineta until police arrive.

 

Eraserhead:

Let me ask you, what do you think of intelligence boosting quirks?

 

Oh! So he does suspect little ol’ me!

 

Oni:

Like Nedzu? For him it’s obviously a quirk, but any regular person could say they have one. Hecc, even quirkless people can say they have an intelligence quirk for shits and giggles. Who’s to say they don’t just have a high IQ?

 

One the other end of the conversation, Shouta sighs, rubbing his tired eyes. If he was Midoriya, he’d probably say something totally different. I want to believe that Midoriya kid is innocent, but I have a gut feeling that there’s more to it.

 

Eraserhead:

What does ‘hecc’ stand for?

 

Izuku can’t help but laugh.

 

Oni:

Omfg. Hecc doesn’t stand for anything! It’s like “heck” but with f l a v o r

 

Eraserhead:

And you’ve lost me.

 

Eraserhead:

Then again I’m not a teen. Like you.

 

Oni:

What was it, my pubescent voice? Or just my boyish charm?

 

Eraserhead:

Shut it. Did you get into UA?

 

Cutting right to the chase, huh?

 

Oni:

Tbh I have no idea. That Mineta kid was the one who told me the results are out. I have to check the mail later. Btw, what happens to the classes if a student gets removed?

 

Eraserhead:

We put the next passing student in their place. We’ll most likely do that, seeing as plotting out and attempting sexual assault is definitely against policy and the law.

 

Oni:

So…… You’re saying my vigilantism is a good thing?

 

Eraserhead:

Just this once, yes. As long as no quirk was used to fight, it’s technically legal. You saved a girl from harm, I can’t belittle you for that.

 

Eraserhead:

You openly admit it’s vigilantism.

 

Oni:

I’m not some honey-frosted wingnut who thinks I’m a hero! If I thought that, there’d be no point in my desire to go to UA!!!

 

Eraserhead:

I get it.

 

Oni:

!!!

 

[Eraserhead is offline]

 

Eraserhead goes away just as the police show up. There’s no coincidence, the boy’s sure. Izuku makes sure to give Tsukauchi a nice wave before his escape.


 

 

On the way home, he swings by the PO box he has listed as his home address and picks the letter from UA.

 

Once home, he sets it down. Why is it heavy? A kitten probably weighs the same as this. OHmygOD what if it’s a bomb!? UA sent me a bomb for getting rejected!

 

Well, it’s not like I’m someone who can be hurt gravely by a bomb.” Izuku sings, tearing the letter open. There’s a few  papers, and a disk. Without warning a projection starts. Izuku is not proud of the sound that came out of his mouth. It was like someone put a harmonica and a kazoo into a garbage disposal!

 

“I am here!” It’s All might! Why is he doing the announcement. Izuku feels rage coming up his throat. Wait, no. That’s vomit. He swallows it down along with his pride and watches the video. “You passed the written exam with a perfect score, Midoriya! As expect of someone with an analysis quirk.”

 

He doesn’t even remember me.

 

“As for the practical exam, you got zero points!” A roll of the eyes is given during the dramatic pause. “Zero combat points, that is! You went around helping other students at the expense of your points. You exemplified heroism, young man! It is with great pleasure that I announce you got the top spot. Well, you tied for the top spot. It is a great feat nonetheless. Midoriya Izuku, welcome to your Hero Academia!” On one hand, Izuku is very happy he got into his dream school. One the other hand, he’s worried what the appearance of All Might means. Why would he be the one to give the announcements? He’s the number one hero. He has to be too busy for this shit. Ohhhhh no. Oh no. Does this mean he’s on the UA staff?! If he’s my teacher at any point I have no idea how I’ll react to seeing him. What if I explode? What if I go into shock and can’t use my quirk? Worst of all, what if I blow my cover!?

 

He’ll worry about this when it happens.  


Chapter Text

It’s the first day of school. Izuku puts on the uniform the school gave him and gets ready. He detangles his curls and defines them with a light curl cream. First impressions, seeing as I haven’t been in a school since the accident. He takes a long look at his face. Does this face scream ‘I’m just a loveable hero fanboy’ or ‘Japan’s most wanted vigilante’? Maybe they’ll pity me upon seeing the scar. Sometimes pity can do wonders.

 

Before he can overthink, he leaves the house. Whenever he leaves, Izuku tends to carry his Oni costume with him. Seeing as that’s a death wish, all he carries with him today is an empty feeling.

 

Halfway through the train ride, he starts to wonder if he’s on the wrong one. That purple-haired kid from the exam is on the train too. I’ve never seen him around the neighborhood. Maybe he just moved? Hopefully the kid doesn’t notice Izuku. Oh my god. Izuku sees more purple. This time it’s Mineta. He sits on the opposite side of the train car, wearing a different school’s uniform. Lucky for Mineta, Izuku can’t be caught publicly smashing heads.

 

Once the train stops in the station, Izuku feels…. Restless. Like he wants to skip school and patrol instead. I really hope we can do some sort of exercise today. I just feel like flying around from building to building.

 

About a mile from the school, he feels eyes on him. Of course he does, he’s out in public! The only thing unnerving him is that he’s felt it for the past few blocks. Hairs on his neck stand up, his body starts pumping out adrenaline before he can tell it to stop. Okay, I’ll look, see it’s a student, and calm the fuck down. His head whips around and meets the eyes of the purple-haired kid. The gaze immediately sharpens into hostility. Izuku gives a relieved sigh.

 

“What’s with the look?” The boy asks. Izuku smiles a bit.

 

“Sorry, I’m just relieved it was you-” Something takes over Izuku. Like a fog, cramming itself into every space in his head.

 

Again, explain why you gave me that look.” The voice commands. It’s the only thing that cuts through the static consuming him.

 

“I was walking and I’ve felt like someone was staring at me for a while. I was trying to ignore it like the rest of my problems in life but then I started getting anxious! So I thought I’d take a quick look, but it ended up being super aggressive. I was just relieved it was you.” Whatever took hold of Izuku drops after he stops word-vomiting. The look the boy gives his is unreadable.

 

“What’s your name?”

 

“Izuku Midoriya. You?”

 

“Shinsou.” I gave you a full name and you want to remain a cryptic being. Fine.

 

“What’s your quirk?” Izuku asks, but a pang of guilt hits him soon after. He flinched. “Never mind, you don’t have to tell me if you’re uncomfortable.” When Shinsou nods in response, they walk in silence.

 

Neither of them realize they’re in the same class until they get to the door.

 

“We’re really early. Is that the only train we can take?” Izuku asks.

 

“Yeah.” I really wanted to sleep in. This kid looks like he could use it too. Izuku opens the intimidatingly large door and smiles a bit. There’s only one student in there. “Oh no.” He mumbles, getting a look from Shinsou. It’s that loud, suspiciously polite blue-haired boy from the exam.

 

“Hello, fellow classmates!” His arms. They’re like a robot. “I am Tenya Iida, it will be a pleasure to have you in class this year! You!” He turns his full attention to Izuku, allowing Shinsou the change to slink away and find his assigned seat. Remember your fallen comrade, Shinsou.

 

“Hello.” Izuku manages.

 

“I owe you an apology. I silently judged your way of going about the exam. I thought it foolish to avoid the robot points, and judged you for your desire to help other examinees. I even thought you just weren’t serious about getting into this school! Yet here you are, tied for the top spot.” Is he done monologuing? “If I had known they were rewarding points for helping others, than I would have done the same. I am truly sorry!” Iida bows so far that Izuku wonders if he threw his back out.

 

“I accept your apology, you can stand up now.” Iida does as asked. “I didn’t help them because I knew I’d get points.” Okay, I might’ve. Not the point. “I helped them because it’s what’s right.” Izuku can almost see the cogs turning in Iida’s head as he ponders the boy’s words. I knew he was a robot! He, too, takes this chance to weasel out of a conversation.

 

“Oh. I sit with you, too.” Izuku sits a seat in front of Shinsou. They look at each other a moment but no one speaks. Instead they settle for absolute silence. Iida takes a seat, too.

 

I’m nervous. Do I have to keep a charade? Hide my razor-sharp wit? God, I hope not. He pulls out a laptop and headphones, listening to police radio chatter. It’s almost soothing, until he gets wind of a particularly alarming call in. He jumps in his seat. Heck, if he didn’t have his ankles crossed there’d probably be nothing to stop him from jumping on his feet and out the window to go help.

 

“Calm down, I’m trying to sleep.” Shinsou deadpans.

 

“Sorry. I was just listening to a.. Podcast. It spooked me.”

 

“You got scared of a podcast.” He repeats.

 

“Yes?” There’s no response, but Izuku can see Shinsou laying his head back on the table in the reflection of his laptop’s screen. More students start pouring in, and Izuku decides it’s best to change from his laptop to his phone. He keeps one phone on top of the desk, and the vigilante phone inside of his desk. Alright, so he can’t relax or take his mind off anything vigilante related. Sue him. He spends a good amount of time half-listening to radio chatter and scrolling through the HeroNews app, not noticing when the class is almost full of students. The only reason why he looks up, is because he feels a pair of eyes burning holes into him.

 

Kacchan. Oh shit, I totally forgot about this possibility! He takes his headphones out, in preparation of being thrown around like a wooden doll like he used to be. Not just any old wooden doll.

 

A Deku.

 

“DEKU!” At that screech of a sound, the class goes quiet. They probably think a villain got into UA. Izuku looks around, then innocently points a finger at himself.

 

“Me?” He mouths. That was 100% the wrong thing to do, because Kacchan storms across the class and slams his hands down on Izuku’s desk.

 

“What the FUCK do you think you’re doing here? You’re dead.” It does look like Kacchan’s seeing a ghost. I don’t know why he’d care, though.

 

“I’m dead? You can’t threaten me like that. I don’t even know who you are!” Okay, Izuku officially decided. He’s going to convince Kacchan that he’s not Mikumo, but a boy named Izuku. Easy, right?

 

“It’s not a threat! You’re dead! You burned to death years ago! All you did was get a shitty haircut and shitty scar!” Izuku didn’t want the half-shaved look! His left side just doesn’t grow hair that long anymore. It gets to a certain length and stops. He knows it’s probably from trauma caused by the accident, but he likes the haircut now so he doesn’t complain.  

 

He takes a deep breath. Time for the show. Everyone in here is watching intently.

 

“You mean Mikumo? He was my cousin! My name is Izuku Midoriya, I don’t know wha-” Kacchan grabs him by the red necktie and lifts him onto his feet. Izuku almost gives into the old habit of folding like a wet paper towel. Please no fire.

 

“He didn’t have any cousins!” It’s not like blond says it, but more so growls it.

 

“Grabbing onto my tie? Getting in close? Sorry, you’re not really my type.” Behind him, he can hear Shinsou snicker. Izuku didn’t mean for his vigilante way of speech to leak in, but there’s no stopping what came out his mouth. Kacchan pulls tighter on the tie. “Listen, I’m his cousin on his mom’s side. Her sister’s son.”

 

“Aunty Inko didn’t have a sister.” Uh oh.

 

“Yes she did. Every holiday I had to hear Mikumo talk about you. How you called him a worthless Deku because he was quirkless. I wouldn’t be surprised if you were the one who set that fire.” Izuku’s too busy talking, not taking in any other information.

 

Behind Izuku, two people see something no other students do. Shinsou and the heterochromatic boy sitting to the right of him see something that concerns them more than Bakugou. Izuku’s fist is balled so tightly that he draws blood, letting it drip onto the floor beneath it. I don’t think he even realizes it, Shinsou thinks.

 

“All you did is berate and belittle the poor kid. The police report says you were the last one who saw him alive. God!.... What was that stupid name he called you? Kacchan?”

 

['What was that stupid name he called you? Kacchan?]

 

Izuku can’t help but give a small smirk at the look on Kacchan’s face. Said look is wiped off his face as Kacchan punches him hard enough to throw him over his chair and Shinsou’s desk. Shinsou barely manages to get out of the way.

 

Worth it! Izuku thinks as he lands harshly. He hits his head on the back cabinets. The only thing he regrets is the sound of a snap in his arm from landing on it. The sound only gets looks from Shinsou and the Peppermint Kid.

 

Cloth wraps tie themselves around Kacchan. Izuku feels his stomach drop and his blood freeze.

 


 

 

Shouta walks through the halls of UA slowly. Partly because he’s tired and currently trying to fight back zombie-mode, but also because he’s on the lookout for Oni. No, he doesn’t expect the demon to just hurl himself into plain sight, but then again he’s unpredictable. Even if he did find Oni, it’s not like he can just tackle a student without prior warning. As entertaining as that’d probably be.

 

Mic is already at his desk, ready to do the morning announcements. Shouta cannot wait to escort his class out for the exercise to spare his eardrums. As much as he loves the man, he cannot deal with that cockatoo impersonator so early in the morning.

 

“-olice report says you were the last who saw him alive! God!-” The rest of the speech is too quiet for Shouta to make out. It’s coming from my classroom. Why!? He picks up the pace. He runs at the sound of furniture being crashed and student’s concerned yelling.

 

Once in the doorway he sees one student in a fighting position, and another already on the ground. The kid was thrown over a desk completely. Recovery Girl is going to kill me. He throws his capture scarves out and restrains the student with ease. He freezes the moment he sees who the other student is. Izuku Midoriya. Why am I not surprised. He pulls Bakugou towards him, and sends him out to wait in the hallway.

 

“Close the door on your way out. You better think of a good reason why I don’t expel you.” He seethes. Bakugou doesn’t look at him. If he had to describe the kid’s face, he’d say thoughtful. Distracted. Regardless, the kid listens and leaves the classroom. Midoriya slowly gets up, wiping blood off his nose. They stare at each other a long moment.

 

I have a reason to look at him like this, what’s his?

 

“Those capture weapons, Eraserhead! Can I have your autograph!” Oh, he’s just a hero fanboy.

 

“Maybe, explain to me why you were on the ground with a bloody nose.” Midoriya rubs the back of his neck.

 

“Bakugou knew my aunt and my cousin. Grew up with them, actually. They’re… They died. I think I look too much like my cousin.” Midoriya looks distressed.

 

“What do you mean?” He walks closer to the boy, making sure he has no other injuries.

 

“He accused me of being him. I get it, we looked a lot alike back then, too. And-And I got mad. He used to bully him for being quirkless and called him worthless Deku. Sometimes I wonder if he even knew his name!” Midoriya gives a bitter laugh. “I called him out on treating him like trash. My cousin never even told me his name. He called him a nickname, and when I mentioned it, he punched me.” Aizawa narrows his eyes at the boy.

 

“If Bakugou never told you his name, how do you know it’s Bakugou?” Aizawa mentally rolls his eyes at the student’s who gasp at the question. Aizawa himself never said his student’s name aloud.

 

“He was the kid involved with the Slime Villain last year. I recognized him and looked him up.” So, he actually has an answer.

 

“Besides the bloody nose, are you injured?” Izuku shakes his head, but the two students behind him look at him with alarm. “Todoroki, Shinsou, why the alarm?”

 

“We heard a snapping sound when he landed.” Todoroki answers.

 

“Oh, sorry! You must’ve my teeth snap together when my head hit the cabinet.” Izuku looks embarrassed. “Sorry if I worried you!”

 

“Everyone in their seats, I’ll have a chat with Bakugou.” Aizawa walks out.

 


 

 

The moment Izuku sees Aizawa close the door behind him, he both wants to cry tears of joy and shout into the void! My homeroom teacher. What did I do!? What vengeful god did I piss off today?!

 

“Midoriya. That was your arm and you know it.” Shinsou snaps when the class goes back to their own discussions.

 

“I’m fine.” At least the whole class didn’t hear it.

 

“Do you have some sort of healing quirk, Midoriya? That was most definitely your arm.” Todoroki adds.

 

“No, I don’t have a healing quirk. I didn’t hurt my arm.” Great, not one, but TWO deadpan voiced wonders behind me.

 

“Midoriya?” Shinsou asks.

 

“Yeah-” The fog makes a reappearance!

 

Tell me the truth, are you hurt?”

 

“My nose hurts a bit.”

 

“Does your arm hurt at all?”

 

“No.” Shinsou drops his hold over him, and turns to Todoroki.

 

“He’s not lying. He’s fine.” Todoroki doesn’t answer. He stares at Izuku a moment, but blinks and turns away before Izuku can ask why.

 

“I have no idea what your quirk is, but it’s so cool!” Izuku gushes. Shinsou looks down. Oh no, he’s embarrassed. The girl in the second seat of his row introduces herself to him as Yaoyorozu. “Thank you.” He says, accepting a moist towelette from her as she returns to her seat. Where did she even get this? Did she just have these on hand!? He cleans the blood and puts the towel in the trash.

 

“-I’ll keep an eye on you. You better keep your behavior in check.” He hears Eraserhead say. Must be wrapping up…. Shit! He makes it back into his chair before the door swings open. Kacchan glares at him before sitting down, not saying a word. Boy if looks could kill. Well, I still wouldn’t care.

 

“I somehow managed to be interrupted before my class even started.” Eraserhead walks to the podium in the front of the room. “My name is Shouta Aizawa, I am your homeroom teacher. Don’t annoy me. Come on, class. Go to your respective locker rooms and change into the school-provided gym clothes. We have some tests for you.” I don’t like that smile.

 

Chapter Text

In the locker room, Izuku avoids Kacchan like the plague. Could I actually die from a plague? How can I found out, I think it’s my time. He settles for changing by Shinsou and Todoroki. He likes them, because they don’t really speak to anyone. I feel like there’s an unspoken agreement of ‘we won’t talk to each other that much but it’ll ward off people who DO want to talk’, and it’s a beautiful thing. He changes into his gym pants, sighing at the length of them. So, maybe living by myself eating mostly precooked and convenience store foods haven’t been the best for my growth. I’m the shortest guy in this class!

 

Apparently Shinsou is also a mind reader, because he looks at Izuku’s pants and smirks a little.

 

Shut it. I know I’m short.” He seethes, rolling up his pant legs. Both pairs of eyes land on him when he takes his shirt off. What’s their deal?

 

“Woah.” Shinsou seems to speak for both him and Todoroki.

 

“What?”

 

“It looks like you’ve had an autopsy or something.” Oh fuck. How did my small monkey brain forget!? Todoroki stays silent, keeping his gaze on Izuku. His eyes are tracing the y-shape of the scar. “You better not let that freak see, it’ll be harder to convince him you’re not that dead cousin or whatever.” Izuku pretends to widen his eyes in realization.

 

“Oh my god, you’re right!” I didn’t mean to raise my voice that whole octave. He puts his shirt on and hurries outside.

 

“Hey!” A girl’s voice calls him. When he turns he’s bombarded by a hug. “I saw you earlier but didn’t get my chance to talk. Are you okay?!” It’s the sparkly vomit girl from the exam. He nods. “I really just wanted to thank you for saving my life at the exam. I can’t remember the last time I was that scared!” A sheepish smile creeps onto Izuku’s lips. As a wanted vigilante, he’s not used to hearing such profuse thanks like this. The girl’s eyes look up, past him. “You too!” Izuku sees Shinsou’s confused look. “Thank you for helping me out of the rubble.”

 

The look on Shinsou’s face makes me sad. It’s like he’s never praised for anything a day in his life. It’s the same look he has whenever I compliment his quirk.

 

Aizawa calls the attention of the class.

 

“Today, we have two different tests for you. First is a Quirk Assessment Test.” A what now? “It’s like a regular school fitness test, except you can use your quirk however you want to achieve good scores. Whoever comes in last today will be expelled immediately.” The class tenses. Yeah, some do best under pressure, but how many of us will crack under it. He calls Bakugou to show an example of the ball toss with the firepower of his quirk behind it. He’s even more powerful than when I last saw him! Bitch.

 

Izuku pushes through the tests, unsure of where he stands. There’s no denying that he’d be in the top 6 or so if they weren’t using quirks. Everyone is getting outrageously high scores on at least one of the tests. Those outliers put them all above me. That just means I have to try for outliers on everything, even if it’s impossible.

 

Aizawa takes note of all the students scores, trying to deduce what their individual strengths are. Midoriya has some of the best scores in the long jump, 100 meter dash, and an outstanding score on the grip test. Everything someone who hops from building to building would be good at. He waves the suspicion off. Anyone can be good at those things.

 

The last test is the ball throw. Izuku already has an idea of how to get a decent score, he just doesn’t know if he’ll get in trouble for it.

 

So far Vomit Girl has the highest score, of infinity. It’s impressive. Her quirk is definitely gravity related. When he gets called up last for the toss, he meets Aizawa’s eyes. That’s 100% ‘I know it’s you, you little shit, I just need proof’ in his eyes. Fun!

 

“Do whatever you want to get it as far as you can, just don’t leave the circle.” Izuku repeats Aizawa’s words, just as he turns around and pegs the ball at Kacchan.

 

Pegging the ball at the blond startles him into using his quirk. Everyone watches in stunned silence as the balls soars forward. Kacchan’s score was 702 meters.

 

Izuku’s score is 706 meters.

 

It seems like Kacchan is too shocked to do anything.

 

“Midoriya. What did you just do?” Aizawa sounds furious, but has a manic smirk on his face.

 

“I- uh. I just thought my best chance at a good score was to get someone else to put firepower behind it. You never… You never said we couldn't use outside sources to help.” Izuku’s not exactly sure how to accurately stutter anymore. He used to have a horrible problem with it, but now he can’t figure out how to do it on purpose! “I technically threw the ball, so I thought it was okay.”

 

“Fine, you got me.” Aizawa nods his head to motion Izuku back to the students. Kacchan glares at him, but doesn’t move a muscle. Several students stare at Izuku, most likely wondering if he has some sort of death wish. “Now for the other test. This one is an obstacle course. It’ll allow me to observe more of your problem solving skills.” The class walks to a large building, shaped like a hangar. Inside of it is what he said, an obstacle course. What he didn’t say is that the course looks like twelve and a half course shoved together into one. It’s twelve courses in a trench coat!

 

“Do whatever you want to get across and hit the button on the other side.” Aizawa explains. That’s all I need to hear! His eyes scan what he can see of the course, searching for ways to cheat the system.

 

“Sir, can you explain what that pile of… things is for?” Iida asks, gesturing to a large pile of junk on the grass. Iida was trying to be polite.

 

“If you see anything in that pile you think can help you get across, you can use it.” Oh my god. This is going to be fun. He sees wires, wheels, metal pipes, wooden planks.

 

Izuku has an idea. It’s not a foolproof one, but it’s a start. The moment Aizawa says go, he sprints to the pile, snatching all he needs. No one else is going for the pile, they’re too concerned with finishing first. Even Shinsou is gone! He spends time building a contraption inspired by the sight of the long support beam going straight across the ceiling of the building.

 

I hope I look like a graceful acrobat. He creates a mix of a trapeze bar and a zip line mechanism. It only takes a few minutes or so, seeing as he had the idea as soon as he set eyes on them. Izuku sprints inside the building, climbing up the support beams. He has the contraption hooked around his neck, holding the bar with his mouth. Once on the main support beam, he sets it up.

 

I’m really high up. Oh, most of the kids are already trapped by obstacles! They’re not even a tenth of the way in! He wants to laugh at the sight of the kids flailing about. He spots Aizawa also in the support beams, sitting against the wall and watching with an aerial view. Smart. It’s like Aizawa can feel eyes on him, because he turns and meets Izuku’s gaze. You scared the fuck out of me!

 

Izuku lowers himself down onto the bar, holding on with his hands. As soon as he kicks his legs forward, it should carry him to the finish. I’m lucky it’s on a slight downward slope! He swings, and is rocketing forwards in seconds. Fast, oh shit. Maybe it was too much of a slope. Quickly, he pulls his knees to his chest and over the bar. His hands are now free, allowing him to hang upside down like an acrobat.

 

Oh how he laughs at the classmates who take notice and start screaming at him! Everyone seems to have the same amount of trouble with them.

 

“Shinsou! Grab on!” Izuku sees him directly in the path. Shinsou stands on a wooden ramp, ready to face the next obstacle. If he jumps, he can hitch a ride.

 

“Are you crazy!?”

 

“Jump! Trust me!” For a split second, Shinsou’s face goes unreadable at the phrase ‘trust me’.

 

Izuku holds his hands out to grab on as he passes, and Shinsou jumps.

 

The effect of  Shinsou’s weight is immediate, because they gain speed. While Izuku screams in joy, Shinsou screams in terror.

 

“Isn’t this fu- Shinsou stop screaming. Isn’t this fun!?” Izuku laughs, tightening his hold on Shinsou’s arms.

 

In the distance, Aizawa watches two of his students at least four times further than the rest of the class. Both scream for different reasons, but he can’t help the smirk.

He’s painfully aware of who the problem child is going to be this year. It’s been quite a few years since he had to deal with one, this might be a nice change of pace for him! Probably not, though.

 

“We’re reaching the end.” Izuku warns. “I’ll let you go right before we stop so you don’t get thrown.”

 

“What about you?” Right, he has to act like he can be hurt.

 

“I’ll hold on for dear life?” That seems to satisfy Shinsou. Towards the end, Izuku lets go of Shinsou, and he lands safely. Izuku, however, gets whipped off the bar and tucks and rolls into the grass. By time he lands completely Shinsou already pressed the button. He’s the first one done.

 

“Are you alright?” Shinsou asks, coming over to inspect.

 

“Very dizzy, otherwise I’m chipper.” The world spins around as he gets up. There are three buttons now, whoa. He hits the one in the middle.

 

The dizziness settles and he sees that there’s actually only one button. The two boys sit in companionable silence. Izuku sits in such a way that his hand is hidden from Aizawa’s view. It seems like he’s sitting normally.

 

He has his Oni Phone.

 

Oni:

UA is cool so far, but the opening ceremony is boring. Nedzu sure likes to talk!

 

Izuku has mastered the art of texting without looking, and keeps his eyes on the students doing the test. He makes it a point not to stare at any one student for too long.

 

Out the corner of his eye he sees Aizawa’s head whip into his direction. You’re not subtle, Eraser.

 

Eraserhead:

You’re playing a game, aren’t you?

 

In his hand, Izuku feels his phone vibrate in Morse code. It took him two weeks to figure out how to add that setting to it! He feels even more proud when he feels what Eraserhead sent back.

 

Oni:

I’m a kid. We play games.

 

Eraserhead:

You’re a teen, and you’re getting on my nerves.

 

Oni:

Well you know I’m at UA, why don’t you just hunt me down?

 

“What are you doing?” Shinsou’s voice startles Izuku.

 

“Texting.” He admits.

 

“With one hand behind your back? How can you even read the texts?”

 

“Yes, because I don’t want my phone taken away. You know how phones can vibrate when you get a text? I made it so it vibrates the message in Morse!”

 

“...Forget I asked anything.”

 

Eraserhead:

I have a class, I can’t leave them.

 

Oni:

You never told me you’re a teacher!

 

Oni:

When do you sleep!?

 

Eraserhead:

I don’t.

 

[Eraserhead is offline]

 

I hope I’m doing a good enough job at tripping him up.

 

It takes another 15 minutes for the rest of the kids to start sprinkling through. A lot of them take turns yelling at the boys, but also talk about how creative the plan was. It’s not like we really had a plan. Kacchan glares again, giving Izuku the silent treatment. Jokes on you, I’ve been waiting for you to be quiet all my life, you fucknut! One glare he doesn’t expect is from Todoroki. Did I accidentally hit him when I passed him? What did I do to piss of the Peppermint Prince?

 

Aizawa hops down from the support beams of the building and joins the class as the invisible girl and sparkly boy finish last.  

 

“Many of you had good strategies to combat the disadvantages your quirk has in situations like these. Midoriya, tell the class what your quirk is and how you used it to your advantage.” Eh?? Why me? Never mind. I really don’t want to speak.

 

“My quirk is called Analysis. It’s not good for helping things like strength or speed. It’s pretty much how it sounds. Intelligence boosting.” Shit, I forgot to stutter.

 

“In a system designed to hold you back, what do you do?” Aizawa asks.

 

“Ch-Cheat it?” Why is Aizawa giving such a creepy smile

 

“Yes and no. As heroes you all will have the odds against you at one time or another. You’ll have to do as Midoriya and Shinsou did and ‘cheat it’.” A pause. “I don’t consider what these two did as cheating because I said to do whatever you guys wanted. Everyone else ignored the pile of tools I left, because you were too worried to think rationally about your approach. We’ll work on that.” He tells the class to head back and change, so we can get our syllabus. “Midoriya.”

 

Izuku and Shinsou stop their conversation. He can’t help but notice that Kacchan and Todoroki stopped too, along with a few others.

 

“Yes?”

 

“Were you texting after you finished?” What the fuck! He’s totally going based on a gut feeling, isn’t he. That’s! Cheating!

 

“No, sir.” He feels Shinsou’s tired eyes on him.

 

“Where is your phone then?”

 

“In my gym locker.”

 

“Okay, let’s go take a look.” You’re joking.

 

“Okay.” Aizawa turns and walks. The moment his back faces them, Shinsou gives him a look of ‘what’s wrong with you?’

 

Once in the locker room, he leads Aizawa to his locker. Shinsou and Todoroki stand off to the side, waiting to get to their own. Izuku can almost feel the frustration seeping into the air when Aizawa sees that his phone is actually in his locker when he opens it.

 

“I apologize for my accusation.” Is all he says before leaving.

 

The door closes, and Shinsou drops down onto the bench.

 

“My heart can’t take this.” He murmurs. Izuku pulls his second phone out of his pocket. “You have two phones.” While he doesn’t seem to be, Izuku knows Todoroki is listening in.  

 

“Yes, now hush.” They change back into their uniforms.

 

“You have an intelligence boosting quirk, and these are the things you do!?” At that, Izuku snorts.

 

The syllabi are handed out once back in class, and Aizawa has yet to say who’s expelled.

 

“Sir, I hate to remind you of such a disheartening topic, but you mentioned expulsion due to unsatisfactory results?” Iida asks. Please tell me his quirk makes him half robot? At least SOME part machine!?

 

“Right. It was a logical ruse to ensure you all did your best. No one is getting expelled.” Aizawa does that murderous grin again as the class utterly loses their shit. Izuku wonders if this is what school's actually going to be for him.

 

He wouldn’t mind if it was.

Chapter Text

It’s prank time. What better way to unwind from a stressful first day of school is there? Izuku only likes messing with one hero, though.

 

Endeavor.

 

Every time Izuku’s see this guy, he seems more and more like a jerk. What’s his deal! At first he thought it was just a front Endeavor put up as part of his brand, but he was horribly wrong. Instead, this expired, crusty flaming hot cheeto of a man is the worst person Izuku can think of!

 

So he likes to fuck with him as a pastime. A hobby, one may call it.

 

Last time I tried pouring gallons of ice on him, it all evaporated. I don’t want to minorly inconvenience him, I want his day to be ruined!

 

Such desires has led Izuku to camp out on a roof above an Endeavor meet-and-greet that’s outside. He should have had bodyguards, but the idea damages his pride so much that the number 2 hero is his bodyguard.

 

Everything is in place, I just have to wait until the civilians are far enough out of the way to avoid getting hit. Hidden in several places around the meet-and-greet area are either fire extinguisher guns, or explosives full of the substance. Either way, Endeavor is going to forcibly cool his jets.

 

“What are you doing?” Izuku feels his blood run still. He turns. Todoroki? Oh my fucking god, I’m so stupid. He’s Endeavor’s son! How did I not recognize him!?

 

“Enjoying the view?” 


 

 

Shouto walks around the alleyways, trying his best to ignore the sounds of his father’s meetup. He was only told to stay nearby, lucky for him it was never specified how far he could go.

 

He has more on his mind than usual. My class has a lot of powerful students, yet none of them came first in that course. I thought the blond boy was who I would have to beat, but I was wrong. It’s that green-haired kid. His name... What was it?... Midoriya. He thinks back to the beginning of class. The angry one said he was dead, then in the locker room he had a big scar that looked like an autopsy. That’s not his quirk though. I don’t get it! Shouto can perfectly recall the sound of the boy’s arm snapping. If it really was his teeth that made the sound, he’d have to at least have one chipped tooth.

 

Our scars almost match.

 

Shouto’s pulled out of his spiral of thoughts. He hears something beautiful. His feet move to follow and track down the sound, trying not to lose the melody he hears. It takes him back towards his father, more specifically, the roof of the main building for the meet up. Now that he’s closer, he can tell that the person isn’t humming, they’re singing. A part of him wants to hear the words. Maybe I’m just bored.

 

Climbing up the fire escape is an easy task, but he moves slowly to avoid alerting the person to his presence. If The Man asks, I could say this was just stealth training, a part of Shouto justifies.

 

“-For me now. And one day all the enemies I’ve made might get their own parade… But not today-” Shouto stands behind the person in a black and green suit. A hero? No, my father wouldn’t want someone else here.

 

“What are you doing?” Shouto asks. The person turns around, caught off-guard.

 

“Enjoying the view?” The person tries. They sound young, like my age. Shouto narrows his eyes.

 

“Above my father’s meet and greet? Who are you, a hero?” That startles a laugh out of them.

 

“Far from it, actually.” Hold on, “Wait no, that makes me sounds like a villain.” The kid gets up and walks towards the Shouto, who drops into a fighting position. “I’m a vigilante.”

 

“You’re a vigilante?” He repeats. Shouto watches as the kid extends a hand. He shakes it reluctantly.

 

“I’m Oni.” What? This is one of Japan’s most wanted vigilantes? They made him sound a lot older in the news reports. “I know that look. Yes, I’m young. About your age, actually.”

 

“What are you doing?” The question from earlier comes back up.

 

“I … You’re Endeavor’s son, right?”

 

“Yes.” It takes Shouto a lot of restraint to keep from adding ‘unfortunately’ onto the end of his sentence.

 

“Are you particularly fond of him?” What? “Because I am not, and am acting on such feelings.”

 

“What are you talking about?” It’s rare that Shouto finds someone who speaks ill of his father outside of the Todoroki family. He drops his fighting stance, moving closer to the boy.

 

“No offense, but your dad’s an asshole.”

 

“None taken, he is.” That feels so good for Shouto to say to someone. At the response, the eyes on the boy’s mask widen a bit, most likely mirroring his expression underneath.

 

“I also have a slight fear of fire quirks, and fire in general.” The vigilante pauses, “So finding out that the one fire hero I thought could help me get over that is actually a piece of shit really bummed me out.”

 

“You’re scared of fire?” The vigilante nods. In this moment, Shouto sees him as another kid rather than a crimefighter.

 

“Do you have a fire quirk?” Oni asks.

 

“....Yes.” Shouto hesitates to answer, not wanting a poor reaction. “Fire and Ice.” Oni nods, silent. “Are you not scared of me?”

 

“No. You seem good. Your father is enemy-shaped, but you’re friend-shaped.” Shouto blinks. What does that mean? “I don’t think you’ll hurt me.” It’s like he knows what I’m thinking.

 

“So what did my father do to you? What did you see that made you realize what kind of monster he is?” Shouto sits besides the Oni, ready to have a full conversation. He might as well, seeing as he’ll be stuck here a while.

 

“I’d see him every now and then while patrolling, and every time he’d act like a jerk to everyone around him. I thought it was just part of his act, like how Present Mic is a radio host as part of his branding. So I got curious and looked into footage from cameras around the city. He’s awful.”

 

“Yes, he is.”

 

“He also set me on fire once.” Shouto can’t help but tense. “I startled him when he saw me in an alley. He remembered that I’m wanted and… I can’t remember what happens after that. I only remember the burning, blinding pain he caused me.”

 

“I’m sorry.” He doesn’t know what else he can say.

 

“You’re not the Todoroki I want apologizing.” He’s been warm and kind while speaking to me, but what he just said was cold fury. Shouto notices the boy fidgeting a bit, touching something on his chest through his suit.

 

“What’s that?” Shouto asks. He almost reaches out to touch, but stops at the last second. Why did I almost do that?

 

“Oh, this?” The boy reaches in his suit through the space between the mask and neck, and pulls a chain out. “It’s my mother’s wedding ring. I tend to touch it when I’m nervous.” His mother’s wedding ring? Is she…? The boy puts it back on. “Sorry, I still never told you what I’m doing.” I completely forgot.

 

“Right.”

 

“So I once tried pouring buckets of ice water on him, but it turned to steam.”

 

“That was you?” The boy nods.

 

“So this time I thought ‘what if I point a bunch of fire extinguishers at him?’” To Shouto, it sounds like he’s about to witness something amazing.

 

“Please tell me that’s what you’re planning.” Oni nods excitedly.

 

“I have a bunch of them hidden. I’m just waiting for the right moment. I don’t want to hit any civilians.” I thought vigilantes only did things for themselves.

 

Oh. That song.

 

“Is this why you were singing that song earlier” Shouto asks. Oni startles.

 

“I was singing?” Shouto nods. “Oh, I didn’t realize.” It sounded like it was about my father. He’s the enemy here.

 

“It was nice.” Shouto admits.

 

“You’re so bluntly honest and straightforward.” The boy blurts out. “In a good way! It’s nice.” There’s a moment of silence. “Looks like the time for this.” Out of a green utility belt, Oni pulls out a remote with a button. “Pressing this will set off all the extinguishers. He’s in the perfect spot.”

 

“I want to see this.” Shouto admits, leaning forward for a better view. Movement.

 

Oni holds the remote out to him.


“Press it. I’ll let you have the honor of pranking your shitbag of a father.” Shouto hesitantly reaches out, hand hovering over the remote. He holds his breath and slams down on the button.

 

Below on the ground, it sets off the entire trap, spraying Endeavor down in a cold cloud. He’s shocked into stopping his flames altogether, stomping and yelling as the crowd laughs at him.

 

Shouto breaks out into laughter, a wide smile on his face as he watches his father throw a tantrum. He turns to Oni, who’s also laughing up a storm. I can’t remember the last time I’ve felt this happy.

 

 

I can’t remember the last time I smiled before now.

 

Oni turns to him excitedly. Shouto can’t see it, but he knows Oni’s smiling too.

 

Once the crowd settles down, Endeavor seems to be looking for the culprit.

 

“I have to go.” Oni says. He sounds kind of sad. “Somehow, witnessing this with someone who relates made it a  lot more fun.”

 

“....Yeah.” Shouto breathes. Who is this kid? Oni starts getting up, and Shouto feels something like pain, but not quite. “Wait-”

 

“Yeah?”

 

“Can I talk to you again?” He says after a moment of silence. In all his life, Shouto can’t remember a time where he’s actively tried reaching out to someone. Before this, he’s never wanted a friend before. He didn’t know how it felt to want a friend before now. Oni nods. “Can I have a name?”

 

“I told you, it’s Oni.”

 

“No, a real name.” There’s a long stretch of time, neither of them speak. Neither of them know what to say next.

 

“Izu.”

 

“Is that your real name?”

 

“Partially, yes. It’s all you get.” What’s with this kid and three letter names? Shouto’s eyes are drawn towards the movement. He holds his hand out. “Let me see your phone.” It’s not a question, but it’s filled with the same kindness that one would have. Shouto hands it over.

 

He watches Oni tap away at the screen for a few minutes, not once does he think to ask what he’s doing.

 

“I downloaded a messenger app and added myself. You’ll have to fix your profile.”

 

“Why is my name ‘Best Todoroki Boi’?” Shouto asks. What does ‘boi’ mean? Did he misspell “boy”?

 

“I don’t know your name.”

 

“Shouto.” At his quick answer, Oni snickers. The sound of sirens in the distance interrupts their peace.

 

“I have to really go now, Tsukauchi is probably sending my assigned pro on me as we speak.” Before Shouto can respond, Oni waves and turns, running towards the edge of the building and jumping. Without a second thought, Shouto races to where he jumped, and Oni is nowhere to be seen.

 

“Izu, huh?”

 


 

 

Hidden from sight, Izuku catches his breath. Did I just befriend Todoroki? What the actual fuck just happened? He smiles a bit, recalling the sight of Todoroki laughing. He did look like he could use a friend. I’ve never seen him without that poker face.

 

Izuku feels light on his feet. The prank on Endeavor was a success!

 

While going from alley to alley, he spots Endeavor talking with the police. He freezes, straining to hear what he might be saying. A few feet from them is Todoroki, who spots Izuku and softens his gaze. Izuku waves and keeps going.

 

Once home, he yanks his mask and suit off and showers. If he agrees that his father’s so awful, what did Endeavor do to him? His family? Izuku recognizes the feeling of needing to save someone, and he felt that when he heard Todoroki speak.

 

I’ll expose that soggy dick for the monster he is. Wow, what’s with me and making enemies of people with fire quirks? If Eraser had a fire quirk, he could probably intimidate me into admitting.

 

By time he gets to his room, he sees that he has two messages.

 

Eraserhead:

I didn’t see you patrolling, school already taking a toll?

 

Oni:

Two words: Pranking Endeavor.

 

Eraserhead:

That was you? It’s taking the internet by storm.

 

Oni:

Meme. The word you’re looking for is meme. It’s a meme.

 

Eraserhead:

Shut it. Why Endeavor? You’ve never messed with any other hero, right?

 

Oni:

There are two heroes I have problems with. Endeavor is an asshole to everyone and I’m sick of it.

 

Eraserhead:

I can’t disagree with that.

 

Oni:

I…. don’t think you should tell me that.

 

Eraserhead:

Probably right.

 

[Eraserhead is offline]

 

Izuku eats a bag of kettle corn and downs a bottle of chocolate milk for dinner. He really needs to go grocery shopping and get better food soon, or else he won’t be able to keep up with physical training.

 

In bed, he looks at the other message.

 

Shouto:

It’s all over the news. My father is so messed up by it that he forgot to turn his beard back on.

 

Oni:

Excuse me, what? His beard isn’t a default setting for him!?

 

Shouto:

No. It’s a display of power.

 

Oni:

That’s so gross?

 

Shouto:

Yes.

 

Izuku takes this moment to send Todoroki a video of the prank, from a street camera, it has the best angle.

 

Shouto:

Thank you. This will be a family heirloom.

 

Did….. Did he just make a joke? He can DO that?!

 

Shouto:

Izu, can I ask you something?

 

Oni:

Shoot.

 

Shouto:

Why are you vigilante? I thought they only cared about themselves, but I don’t see that in you.

 

Oni:

Vigilantes are vigilantes because we care too much about others. Too much to sit back and watch them die.

 

Shouto:

Oh.

 

Oni:

I’ve never told anyone before, the reason I have for doing this. All Might himself told me I can’t be a hero.

 

Shouto:

Are you sure it was All Might? That sounds out of character for him.

 

Oni:

He saved my life, watched me die, and told me ‘no you cannot be a hero’ when I asked about having a useless quirk or no quirk at all.

 

Oni:

A lot happened that day, and that was a breaking point. I just decided to be my own hero. Made my own costume…. But then your dad burned it… So I broke into his agency and got the things to make my current costume

 

Shouto:

You broke into my father’s agency?

 

Oni:

It was so easy! He’s so full of himself that he doesn’t care for the top security measures that most other pros have! The! Buffoon!

 

Shouto:

You’re right, my father is a buffoon.

 

Izuku’s reminded of the time by the heaviness of his eyelids.

 

Oni:

Go to bed, you have school in the morning. Good night.

 

[Oni is offline]

 

He’s not sure if he put his phone down or not, just that he promptly falls asleep.  

Chapter Text

In homeroom today, Shouta has directions written on the board. He wants his students to write down their biggest fears. Not because it’s entertaining, but because as heroes you can’t let fear hold you back. A goal he has is to build his student’s confidence, and help them believe in their own abilities.

 

He most likely would never admit out loud, but he loves teaching.

 

His students are free to do what they want for the duration of homeroom as he looks over their answers. Most of them are rational thoughts, like loved ones dying. Some are more out there than others, like ‘I’m scared bugs will lay eggs in my tape and hatch’. That’s irrational.

 

Midoriya’s answer is irrational too.

 

‘Fire. More specifically, fire quirks.’ I honestly didn’t expect an answer from Midoriya.

 

“Midoriya?” He calls the boy. Shouta has been calling on students here and there to hear out their reasoning and determine a course of action to help. The boy sits in the chair beside his napping spot on the floor. There’s an additional note written, that no other student has included. “‘Please do not say my fear out loud in class.’. Why did you request this?” Midoriya fidgets a bit, before mouthing the answer.

 

“I have family who died in fires, and Bakugou is scary.” When he mouths Bakugou’s name, he makes a gesture with his hands that Shouta can only interpret as explosions. It’s still irrational, but there’s a way for him to justify it.

 

“What about Endeavor?” At that, the boy quickly shakes his head, eyes wide. Okay, this has to get fixed. A fear of fire might stop him from doing his best on rescue missions. “Okay, that’s all.”

 


 

 

For his own sake, Izuku found it best to answer honestly. He doesn’t want to be near fire, there’s no shame in it. His request to keep it quiet wasn’t to keep Kacchan from hearing it.

 

It’s Todoroki who can’t hear it.

 

I might’ve let out a bit too much personal information with him, I admit. I mean, he and I relate on his stance on Endeavor and my heart just started pouring out! I wish I hadn’t said the name Mikumo yesterday morning. I could’ve given that name to him as Oni’s name. Shit. My dramatic flair has ruined my chance! I was tempted to say my name was Zuku, because he’s like a budget Zuko. Something tells me that joke would be lost on him and he’d realize it’s just Izuku without the ‘I’.

 

Not gonna lie, seeing his poker face compared to yesterday is kind of creepy now. Like a Canadian themed porcelain doll!

 

Once back in his seat, he goes through his current assignments. He can’t let homework stop him from patrolling!

 

He knows running into Todoroki yesterday could have been a fatal mistake, but he can’t bring himself to regret it. I know what it feels like to be alone.

 

This complicates things, for sure. He knows Aizawa suspects him. Based on what? His feelings? Stupid. He can’t go based on a hunch! I want a battle of wits!

 

“Alright, homeroom is almost over. I’m leaving now because your next teacher is just… too much.” Aizawa yawns, walking out the door. Can he do that? Then again, he’s made it a point to let the students know that he has the authority to do whatever he pleases.

 

Izuku sleepily puts his laptop away, preparing for his next class.

 

I am entering the room like a normal person!” All Might booms, making an entrance so far from normal looking it’s comedic.


 

 

Behind Midoriya, Hitoshi sees a reaction no one else gave. Izuku flinched at the sight of All Might.  He probably just startled him. I can see why Aizawa left. His eyes linger on Midoriya, waiting for him to settle down and realize how silly he’s been,

 

He doesn’t settle.

 

He’s shaking. That’s the face of someone who’s scared. Why would he be scared of All Might?

 

Less than a minute later, he witnesses Midoriya forcibly smooth out his features, and copy the excited look that his classmates have. I know a fake smile when I see one. Should he pry into this? Not at all. It’s none of his business. On the other hand, he’s curious.



All Might informs the class that their hero costumes are in, and to get suited up. Yesterday, Shinsou and Midoriya walked together in a nice silence, only speaking up every once in a while. Now, Hitoshi can tell he’s purposely lingering in the back of the group, as far from All Might as he can. He’s not my friend, Hitoshi thinks, lingering behind the class as well. I’m using him to avoid unwanted social interaction. That’s all.

 

In the locker room, Midoriya crashes onto the bench in front of their lockers, hands covering his face. There’s an obvious tremble in his hands, and they barely muffle the sound of his breathing.

 

Oh. He’s having an anxiety attack.

 

“Midoriya?” He calls.

 

“Yeah?” Midoriya’s voice shakes, and Hitoshi snatches control of his mind away from him.

 

You need to calm down. Follow my counting.” Hitoshi instructs him to breathe, following the exercise he leads him through. I’ve been told my brainwashing is like a fog, where you can’t really think. This should help. Sure enough, it does. When Hitoshi releases his hold, Midoriya appears calmer. His hands steadier.

 

“Thank you.” Not used to outright gratitude from people, he only manages to nod in response. “I know you don’t like to hear it, but you have a great quirk.” Midoriya didn’t seem to expect an answer, because he changes into his suit without another word. What got him so worked up? What happened with All Might?

 

He’s the first person who hasn’t acted negatively to me using my quirk on them. He THANKED me for it! I can’t tell if he’s just pretending to not see me as the villain everyone else sees.

 

“Your hero costume is a green bunny?” Hitoshi asks, seeing Midoriya.

 

“I’m not a bunny!” He huffs. The way he pouts and bounces makes him look even more like a bunny. It’s amusing. Hitoshi’s costume is a practical black jumpsuit and combat boots, much like Aizawa’s. A main difference is that Hitoshi has a cloak with his outfit, so he can hide his face when he needs to trick someone. The goal is for him to learn what equipment suits him best. Today is the first venture into figuring it out. Hitoshi doesn’t realize he’s waiting for Midoriya. To anyone else, it probably looks like he’s calmed down. To me, all I see is a mask.

 

When the rest of the class makes it outside, Hitoshi stands with Midoriya, yet again in the back. He’s not just standing there. He’s hiding in plain sight. Advantage of being short, I suppose. It’s painfully obvious that Midoriya is looking everywhere except at All Might.

 

“Today will be your first combat exercise! Teams of two will play as heroes or villains. The villains must protect a bomb they want to detonate, while the heroes must stop them! Both teams receive capture tape, which can be used to trap them. Once a person is wrapped in capture tape, they are no longer allowed to battle.” All Might continues explaining, telling that the teams will be drawn from lots. The words Hitoshi hears next doesn’t surprise at him at all, but it does baffle him. “Team B is Shinsou and Midoriya.” How!? He slowly turns to Midoriya and his shit-eating grin.

 

“Kill me. Please.” Hitoshi deadpans, getting a laugh from Midoriya. “How do I keep getting stuck with you!?” It’s not logical!

 

“Plot dictates.” Midoriya says with a matter-of-factly tone.

 

“What the hell are you talking about?” I’m so lost. The smaller boy waves him off, distracted. Once in the observation room, they sit against the back wall. There’s no point in trying to escape Midoriya’s presence now, seeing as they have to work together. It could be worse. Hitoshi very well could have been stuck with that blond boy, who’s been glaring at Midoriya quite a bit. There’s also a good chance that he could have been paired with the noisier classmates, who seem to use friendship to get through school. No, thank you.

 

There’s no way to tell if Midoriya is staring into space with that sad expression or not. It’s either that or he’s staring at Todoroki. The former makes more sense to Hitoshi. Todoroki is another student he doesn’t mind being near, because he doesn’t talk to anyone. The first group to go is the Loud Square Boy and the Frog Girl, against the boy with the bird head and the other boy who doesn’t speak. Hitoshi should absolutely be learning his classmates’ names.

 

While the first match goes on, Present Mic comes into the observation room, standing in the doorway.

 

“Midoriya?” He calls. When Midoriya looks up, Present Mic start’s signing. “Aizawa wants to know if your fear of fire is something you wish to work on outside of class. He told me that you specifically asked that your classmates don’t find out, so he sent me to ask like this. He needs an answer soon, kiddo.” Hitoshi translates, and looks to Midoriya’s answer.

 

“I don’t know. I wouldn’t consider it life-ruining fear. It’s fire quirks that make it hard for me. Can you tell him that I’ll think of an answer as soon as I can?” He’s scared of fire quirks? Why? Hitoshi was forced to learn Sign Language almost immediately after his quirk manifested, but it wasn’t often he found someone else who used it.

 

When he was a kid, he saw an interview with Present Mic. The first time he used his quirk, it was during a temper tantrum. His parents suffered massive hearing loss, so they learned Sign Language together as a family.

 

To think Aizawa sent Mic out, right this second, to ask Midoriya a simple question…. It’s a bit suspicious. After Present Mic leaves, Hitoshi turns back to Midoriya. His expression is unreadable, calculating.

 

“-nd as for our second round, we’ll have Team B, against team A.” Team A is…

 

“Me and Bakugou!” The gravity girl speaks. Her expression drops a bit when she meets Bakugou’s eyes. We’re the heroes. For once, I’m not called a villain. Ha!

 

They’re given 15 minutes to plan outside of the large building, expected to think of good strategies.

 

“Shinsou, I know you don’t want to, but to think of a good strategy, I need to know about your quirk.” Purple eyes land on Midoriya, taking in the sight of him shaking where he stands. Midoriya’s eyes dart around the map of the building, not quite focusing on one spot.

 

“What do you think it is?”

 

“Mind control?”

 

“Brainwashing, close enough. If you respond to me verbally, I can brainwash you. It’s not a very heroic quirk, I know.”

 

“Are you fucking serious?” Huh? “You’ve got to be flimming my flams-”

 

“Midoriya?”

 

“Are you buttering my toast right now? Brewing my coffee?” Oh no, he’s snapped.

 

“Um.”

 

“Who the hell said your quirk isn’t heroic? You literally pulled me out of an anxiety attack! What, was that out of villainy, then? Did you steal my wallet or some shit while you helped me?”

 

“Enough.” At the word, Midoriya snaps his teeth together. At least he respects when to stop. After a moment of utter quiet, Midoriya speaks up again.

 

“You’ll have to get to the bomb by yourself.”

 

“What are you going to do?”

 

“Bakugou is going to come after me. There’s no doubt. We can use that to buy you time. Uraraka doesn’t know your quirk, use it to your advantage.”

 

“Are you sure you can handle Bakugou?” Hitoshi asks, getting a head tilt in response. “You’re scared of fire quirks, I don’t think you should have to deal with him alone.”

 

“You know sign language.” Midoriya says softly. Shit, I forgot that I’m not supposed to know that. “Just let me deal with it.” The cold tone of Midoriya’s voice sends a chill down his spine.

 

“If I feel that I have to step in, I will.” In a sense, their stubbornness is matched.

 

“Uraraka’s quirk is Zero Gravity. Don’t let her get all five fingers on you. I think she has a weight limit, and that’s why she gets sick. So if you do get caught by her, just try to get away. Eventually, she’ll have to let you go.”

 

“And Bakugou?”

 

“Explosive sweat. It detonates from his hands. We’d need to lower his temperature if we wanted to stop him. Even then, there’s little chance of us beating him.”

 

“I thought you said-”

 

“I said I would distract him. He doesn’t see you as a threat. He doesn’t even see me as a threat, he just wants an excuse to beat me up.” With all that said, there’s nothing for them to do besides wait for their timer to go off. Hitoshi wants to ask why he’s scared of All Might, but he doesn’t want the man to hear through the earpieces. Right now, there are no cameras on them.

 

“Why are you scared of All Might?” He signs to Midoriya. He looks like someone just kicked him in the throat.

 

“I’m not.”

 

“Midoriya, you may have everyone fooled, but you were having a literal breakdown at the sight of him.” The greenette doesn’t respond. “Midoriya, what did he do to you?”

 

“Times up! Heroes, begin!” The sound of All Might’s voice startles Midoriya, who slaps a hand over his mouth. It looked like he went on autopilot for a second. Without another word, they enter the building.

 

Despite having heavy looking boots, Midoriya doesn’t make a sound. To Hitoshi, it looks practiced. At the first corner, Midoriya holds a hand up, halting them.

 

“Deku, you better not be fucking with me.” He hears from down the hall. The two boys stay still, waiting for the sound of Bakugou’s footsteps to retreat. With a small wave of his hand, Midoriya gestures Hitoshi to follow him down the hall.

 

“How do you know to go this way?” Hitoshi signs.

 

“He’s stupid and probably walking back towards the bomb.” I wouldn’t underestimate him THAT much.

 

“I got you now, Deku! Dodge this! ” An aerial attack from around the corner shoots towards Midoriya. Not only does he dodge, but he grabs Bakugou’s right hook and slams him down.

 

“Run!” Midoriya yells at Hitoshi. Right, the stupid plan. Hitoshi goes ahead, losing sight on them. His feet skid to a halt of the sound of explosions. I can’t just leave him. Even if I do make it to that Uraraka girl, I’m not good at hand to hand combat yet. Against Midoriya’s desperate order, he stays, hiding around the corner.

 

Bakugou is furious, putting his quirk behind every punch.

 

“I want to hurt you so badly, they have to stop the exercise! You fucking hear me, you damn nerd!?” What?! Hitoshi steps out, seeing the two matching each others punches almost evenly.

 

“Bakugou, why do you want to hurt Midoriya?” All Hitoshi needs is an answer. They’ll win.

 

It never comes.

 

Bakugou keeps his focus on Midoriya. He was right. He doesn’t even know I’m here. Somehow, this hurts almost as much as getting called a villain. Midoriya kicks Bakugou back into the wall and runs, grabbing Hitoshi’s wrist and pulling him along.

 

“I told you to go!” Midoriya whines, dragging him up the stairs to the next floor.

 

“I couldn’t leave you!”

 

“I’m touched, really, but now's not the time for the revelation that I’m a friend, Shinsou." 

 

“That’s not why! Don’t sass me! If my Brainwash doesn’t work then I need you to help in hand to hand combat against that girl.” That’s my reason! Bakugou rockets  himself up the stairs, in front of them. “Bakugou you’re-”

 

“A bitch!” Midoriya yells at him.

 

“What did you just say?” Bakugou sounds strangely calm, it’s scarier. His eye twitches along with his hands.

 

“You’re a greasy ass bitch!” He’s still trying to distract.

 

“I see what you’re doing. You’re buying that Einstein fucker time to run.” Bakugou holds up the large grenade gauntlets on his hands. “See these? They’re made to store my sweat. If they were made right, they’ll make a blast bigger than I can manage on my own.”

 

“Bakugou, stop, you’ll kill them!” All Might warns. Bakugou viciously smiles, holding up a gauntlet and pulling the pin out. “They’ll be fine if they dodge.”

 

In that moment, Midoriya puts himself directly in front of Hitoshi, and pushes him through the doorway behind them. Midoriya takes a direct hit from the blast, flying into the doorway as the rooms leading up to it get destroyed. If Bakugou were any closer, he’d have destroyed the room they were in.

 

“Shinsou, Midoriya-” All Might’s voice cuts out of the earpiece.

 

“All Might wants me to tell you fucks that your earpieces were fried from the heat. The cameras in this hall are also damaged from the high temperature. The exercise will continue, seeing as no one’s dead yet.”

 

“Can you tell him something for me?” Hitoshi calls.

 

“What-” I’ve won.

 

Go wrap that girl in capture tape, and then yourself. ” Hitoshi hears the sound of Bakugou’s footsteps retreating, and take the moment to look for Midoriya. He said he’s scared of fire quirks, yet threw himself between us without a second thought. Behind some rubble, he sees Midoriya.

 

The smaller boy’s suit is singed off, except for most of the pants. That’s not the worst part.

 

His flesh and bone is showing. He’s covered in burns, and what looks like melted skin.

 

Midoriya sits there, staring somewhere distant. Completely awake, but not fully aware yet. Is it shock? What’s wrong with him! In front of Hitoshi, he watches as the burns start disappearing. The skin and flesh rebuild itself, stringing together like a spiderweb. It’s almost like it’s sewing itself shut. The second Hitoshi takes another step towards him, Midoriya slowly looks up at him.

 

 

“Your quirk?” Midoriya shakes his head, not speaking. His lips and cheek are still messed up. There’s a period of silence, allowing his face to heal a bit more.

 

“You see, my Analysis quirk makes me so smart that I can order my cells to repair my body-”

 

“Bullshit.” Hitoshi hisses. He’s acting weird.  “You don’t have an analysis quirk. Do you?”

 

“The hero team wins!” An announcement plays over the intercom. Still healing, Midoriya gets up and walks to where Hitoshi stands with wide eyes.

 

“The heat from his explosion fried both of our earpieces and the cameras. All Might should have called off the match.”  He must be burning up right now. Then why is his voice so cold?  A minute passes, and the boy is completely healed. He looks at his tattered costume, an expression of dread watches over him. He doesn’t want anyone seeing that scar. Without a second thought, Hitoshi takes his cloak off and hands it to the boy, who takes it gratefully.

 

“Thank you.”

 

“I expect answers.”

 

“Not now. Not here.” He’s so closed off right now. It’s like I’m speaking to another person. Why did he lie about his quirk?

 

“Come on, then.” 

 

“Sixth degree burns, that’s a new record for him.”

 

“What?”

 

“When you get burned, and it goes through to the bone, and begins charring the bone, it’s classified as a sixth degree burn.”

 

“...Oh.”

 

Back in the observation room, All Might goes on about how dangerous Bakugou’s stunt could have been. He says that someone could have been gravely hurt. They were.

 

Hitoshi joins Midoriya, who’s clutching the cloak around himself, unaware of what’s going on. Maybe he’s dissociating?

 

Either way, Hitoshi was going to get answers as soon as possible.

Chapter Text

The battle exercises end, but Izuku can’t remember most of them. He remembers his own, of course, but little after that. In the locker room, he sits himself down on the bench, forgetting what comes next.

 

“Midoriya?” Shinsou calls, a hand gently shaking him. “I uh, need my cloak back…” He trails.

 

“Hm?’ Before Izuku can respond, he feels the heavy, grounding fabric taken off of him. “Oh, sorry.” That’s right, he has to change back into his uniform!

 

“Are you okay?” Shinsou asks after a moment.

 

“Yeah, fine.”

 

“I meant mentally. You seem really out of it.” He’s quick to reiterate what he meant.

 

“Oh. I think I’m just overwhelmed a bit.” There’s a knowing look of understanding that flashes in Shinsou’s eyes. He nods. Alter they change, they go to English class. Present Mic excuses Izuku to speak to Aizawa.

 

In the teachers lounge, he feels suddenly out of place. I see all you heroes on the streets on a daily basis, but now it feels weird to see you all so…. Tame.

 

“Over here.” Aizawa calls from a couch in the corner of the room. There’s a small sign on the table saying ‘Shouta’s Sofa’.

 

“H-Hi.” Izuku greets, sitting down where Aizawa pats. On the table, there are files on various students scattered about. Upon closer inspection, Izuku’s heart speeds.

 

There files on every single student with healing quirks.

 

“Did you think about what Hizashi asked you?” Hizashi? Oh, Mic. He nods. “And?”

 

“I was going to ask you for help, but I think I’ll be okay. I was just fighting Bakugou, and he fired an explosion at me. It was eventful.”

 

“If you’re sure you don’t need my help, what’s with your face?”

 

“I can’t remember a lot after battle ended. I think I dissociated for a while? Is that what that is?”

 

“I thought you had an analysis quirk, shouldn’t you know the answer.”

 

“Sir, it’s for analyzing things, not google.” He slaps his hand over his mouth. “I didn’t mean to get snarky, I’m so sorry.”

 

“Yeah, yeah. I’ll be frank with you. Your fear isn’t why I called you here.” What?  “You have just the quirk I need for my latest project.” Aizawa sits up, grabbing a pile of even more files off the couch.

 

“Am I interning under you or something?”

 

“Yes. You’re going to help me catch a criminal I’m chasing.” Oh no. He’s got me good. “The criminal is suspected to be a UA student, having a healing quirk.” He wants me to start analyzing right a way.

 

“Is this is first year here?” He nods. “So he’s either a freshmen, or exchange student.” Izuku goes through every file. Healing quirks are actually considered rare, so it’s not many. After a few minutes, there are three piles. “One for freshmen, one for exchange students, and one for people who have healing quirks but aren’t in the previous categories.”

 

“What do you think?” I know what he’s waiting for me to say.

 

“The criminal could be faking his quirk while in school.” Aizawa smiles widely, he was definitely waiting for that answer.

 

“It’s settled, Midoriya. I’ll give you papers that have to be signed by your parents and then your free to intern with me.”

 

“Yes, Sir.”

 

“Say, what do you think of faking a quirk? Generally speaking?”

 

“I think it’d be easy enough. Well, I don’t know about registrations. Someone could say they have to pee an a public drinking fountain in order to activate their quirk, and people would probably buy it.” Izuku can tell that Aizawa is trying not to laugh. “As long as you say ‘it’s because of my quirk’, people can get away with whatever they want.”

 

“Most of the time.”

 

“Most of the time.” Izuku repeats. “You can erase people’s quirks, but you can’t see what you’re erasing?”

 

“Right. I can see whether or not a person has a quirk factor, and I can flip that switch, but I can’t see what exactly is being turned off.”

 

“That’s a bummer.” Izuku huffs. I’m forgetting to stutter.

 

“I agree.”

 

“Who is it?”

 

“Excuse me?”

 

“The criminal. I have to know who it is so I can get started on analyzing. I-If that’s okay with you, of course!”

 

"Right. It’s Oni. I’m sure you’ve heard of him. Now, then, it’s time for you to go to lunch.” Aizawa gets up, shooing Izuku down the hall. A few meters away, Aizawa calls his name again. “Midoriya, I will be very clear about this. You are my main suspect.” He’s trying to trap me. Izuku purposely widens his eyes, a deer caught in headlights.

 

“Sir?” Aizawa’s already back into the teacher’s lounge. Izuku runs his hands through his hair, taking a moment to breathe. He hits a wall when he turns back around. No…. It’s not a wall.

 

“What did he mean by that?” Shinsou asks, looming over the boy. Izuku slaps a hand over Shinsou’s mouth, pulling him around the corner.

 

“Hush.”

 

“I need answers, for a lot of questions, Midoriya.”

 

“Were.. Were you following me?” Izuku asks.

 

“Not really, no. we got dismissed for lunch and I got curious. So I didn’t follow you.”

 

“Oh, but you hunted me down.” They glare at each other a moment, but there’s no real malice from either side. “We should go.” Falling back into a comfortable silence, they walk. Every joint in Izuku’s body locks up the minute they walk into the cafeteria.

 

“Not a fan of crowds?” Shinsou asks.

 

“I’ve been homeschooled the past few years and forgot how awful cafeteria’s are.” Shinsou chuckles, leading the way to the lunch line. Thank the fucking lord he’s tall. He’s a perfect human shield. I feel like I have an invisibility quirk! They get their food and sit at the smallest table they can find. It’s a table for four. I need one more person here. Then there’s no chance of a pair of loud people to crash. Oh, perfect. Izuku points, and sure enough the boy comes over.

 

Todoroki places his lunch down next to Shinsou and sits.

 

“Why did you call me over?” Todoroki asks.

 

“I don’t want people bothering me. Neither does Shinsou, and you don’t talk to people. It’s an ideal scenario.” He explains.

 

“What, did you deduce that with your quirk?” Shinsou jokes, earning a kick in the shin. “Uncalled for.” They eat in silence, until Shinsou speaks up again. “Are you going to take action over what Bakugou did to you?”

 

“No.” He answers firmly.

 

“Why not!? You could’ve died.”

 

“But I didn’t. I’m okay, and that’s why I won’t act against him. I don’t have time to deal with him, anyways.” Shinsou obviously doesn’t like the answer, but he drops the discussion.

 

The food is amazing, that’s Lunch Rush alright! He can’t remember the last time he’s eating something so good, or so close to homemade. It reminds him of how he misses his mother’s katsudon.

 

“You’re crying.” Shinsou hands Izuku a napkin and says no more.   Oh, it seems like I am. Izuku wipes at his eyes.

 

“Sorry, this food is just really good.” That response gets a shocked chuckle out of Shinsou. “What?” He laughs back.

 

“Midoriya.” I am SO rolling my eyes at you. Mentally. God, Eraser, I want the game to go on just as much as you do. But interrupting my time to eat is a line you shouldn’t cross!

 

“Yes?” Aizawa drops down into the empty seat.

 

“Here. This is your homework for tonight. I want detailed reports on every case in here. You don’t necessarily have a deadline, but for obvious reasons sooner is better.” You bitch! Giving me more homework is just so you can cut down on my patrol time! You think if you see less Oni as soon as this starts, you’ll have evidence to raise suspicion against me. “On top are the permission slips. They have to each be read and signed by both of your parents. My contact information is in there for you to ask questions, and for your parents to reach if they need.”

 

“My uh.. My dad isn’t in the picture. Is it okay if I just get my mom’s signatures?” Technically a half-truth. No parents. It’s easier if I have to only forge on signature, seeing as they can compare both and conclude that they were done by the same person.

 

“That’s fine.” Aizawa’s already walking away.

 

He’s popping up randomly in order to catch me off guard. Smart.

 

“Are you interning under Aizawa?” Todoroki asks, not breaking eye contact.

 

“Yeah, he thinks my quirk would be good to catch a certain criminal he’s after.”

 

“What criminal?” Shinsou asks, intrigued for different reasons than Todoroki. Well, Eraser never said I had to keep things confidential.

 

“Oni.” Todoroki barely tenses, but to someone who knows how emotionless he is, it feels more like he dramatically threw himself onto the ground in pain.

 

“Why?” Todoroki is too quick to ask.

 

“They think I can deduce who he is.” After that, Todoroki stays quiet for the rest of lunch, deep in thought.

 

For the duration of the school day, Izuku feels Shinsou staring at the back of his head, as if he could see his actual thoughts. When school ends, they walk to the train station with a tense air between them. I know he wants to ask, but why hasn’t he yet? The train ride is quiet too.

 

“I’ll see you tomorrow.” Shinsou waves goodbye, walking away. What? That’s it!? A few blocks into his walk home, he realizes he’s being followed. Shinsou, you overly curious cabbage! No matter what choice he makes, it all leads to Shinsou finding out too much. He turns into an upcoming alley, hoping he can just shake Shinsou off his trail.

 

Shinsou follows into the alley, slowly. Izuku hides behind a dumpster, knowing he wouldn’t have had enough time to climb up the buildings.

 

“Mido-”

 

“Hey kid, you got any change on you?” Who’s that? Izuku hears another voice in the ally.

 

“I don’t.” Shinsou replies steadily, like he’s used to being indirectly threatened.

 

“I don’t believe him.” Another voice answers. There’s at least two.

 

“Look at this pretty UA uniform, he must have money to spare. Come on, kid. Mommy and Daddy paid your way into that school, you can give us a few bucks.” Three? Really? The world couldn’t just let me have two people to worry about? I could’ve just comedically knocked their heads together!

 

“Mmnn-” Shinsou tries speaking, but a sound doesn’t come out.

 

“My quirk is called Silencer, I can stop any noise I please. That includes your speech.” That means Shinsou can’t use his quirk. “Mind if we just search you for cash? Oh, I’ll take your silence as a yes!” God dammit.

 

“Three against one sounds a little unfair, doesn’t it?” Izuku asks, stepping out from behind the dumpster.

 

“Looks like we got ourselves a hero.” They’re 30s to 40s, it looks like their health isn’t the best. No physical manifestations of their quirks showing.

 

“Let’s trade. You let him go, and I beat the collective shit out of you?” Why hasn’t my voice been silenced? What, can he only do one noise at a time?  Two of them grin, ready for a challenge. The third looks like he has common sense, wary of Izuku.

 

“Al-” He doesn’t let them finish. Izuku charges and rams one in the shoulder, bringing him to the ground. What a convenient place for a rock! He picks a stone off the ground and knocks the man out, and immediately pegs another man with it. They’re both charging towards me at once, now is my time to shine! Izuku makes it appear as if he’s dashing towards them, but leaps right towards the wall, kicking off it and back at them.

 

More than happy to, Izuku comedically knocks their heads together and watches as they drop.

 

He slowly turns to Shinsou, who’s on the ground in shock. It gives Izuku time to whip out his phone and make a call.

 

“Hello?”

 

“Yo, Tsuki! How’s my favorite wittle detective!” Izuku teases.

 

“What do you want.”

 

“A kid was getting mugged by three trash people, I knocked them out. I’m calling you for clean up.” Izuku explains, but only gets a tired sigh in response.

 

“Oni, what about the kid?”

 

“I’ll make sure he gets home.” At that, Izuku points a glare towards Shinsou. “Sending you location.”

 

“Just because you have my number, and sometimes do good things, doesn’t mean I approve of you.” Face it, you like me.

 

“Okay, Dad.” The result of his statement makes Izuku hold the phone away from his ear. I didn’t expect him to yell so loud. When he finds the strength to put the phone back up to his ear, he gasps. “He hung up on me!”

 

“Midoriya, who are you?” Shinsou asks, staring at the three grown men on the ground.

 

“I’m very disappointed in you.” At that, Shinsou looks down. “Good, as long as you feel some regret, I can forgive you.”

 

“I-”

 

“Are you hurt?” He shakes his head. “Come on.” Without seeing if Shinsou is actually following, he walks out the ally.

 

“Where are we going?”

 

“Home.” I know I should be furious with Shinsou, but I can’t actually find it in me to be mad. Halfway to his apartment, his Oni phone rings. “Hello?”

 

“Izu, did you know people are trying to capture you?” Todoroki, you’d really warn me?

 

“Yeah, I know. Eraserhead and I go way back.”

 

“You’re not scared?” Not as much as you appear to be.

 

“No.”

 

“Alright, I’ll talk to you later.” Todoroki’s quick to hang up. I heard Endeavor’s voice in the background, must be why he ended the call so soon.

 

“So, Aizawa’s your dad, right?” Izuku is so taken aback at Shinsou’s question that he outright stares at him with an open mouth.

 

“I can’t… I don’t- Why did-” he sputters. “Just shut up and follow me please.” Oh my god. Oh my fucking god, he was serious.

 

“Alright.”

 

At his apartment, he tells Shinsou what number to go up to. In the meantime Izuku climbs up the fire escape and in through a window. He tends to only enter through the window because there’s less witnesses than just waltzing through the door. When Izuku opens the front door for Shinsou, the boy stands there, hand up to knock. Izuku lets Shinsou in, and promptly locks the door and deadbolt.

 

“I thought you said we were going to your house?” Shinsou asks, setting his bag down and looking around.

 

“That’s what I said, yeah.”

 

“You mean this is it?” Shinsou blinks at him. The apartment is a good example of house flippers who gave up halfway through. They realized it was too damaged to save. The support beam that killed him is still there, along with the outline of his body in the center of the floor.

 

“Yes. I live here.” Before Shinsou can fire off questions, Izuku decides to get everything over with. “Aizawa isn’t my dad. He’s my enemy. An enemy I am unfortunately fond of.”

 

“Are you saying you’re Oni?” Izuku nods.

 

“You understand that if you breathe a word of this to anyone I’ll have to deal with you.” It’s not a question, not even a real statement. It’s a threat.

 

“Understood.” He gulps, running a nervous hand through his hair. “So that’s what Aizawa meant when he said he suspects you?” Izuku nods, “That’s insane.”

 

“To everyone else, it’s simply a hero trying to catch his target. To us, it’s a game.”

 

“Why are you in UA?”

 

“To be a hero? What kind of question is that!?” Shinsou opens his mouth to defend, but Izuku cuts him off. “Relax, I’m kidding.” At this point, Shinsou is up and looking around the apartment, going over Izuku’s various tools and gadgets. He even looks in the boy’s fridge!

 

“How are you not starving? There’s like nothing in here.” At that, Izuku smirks at Shinsou, pulling three wallets out his pocket. “You robbed them?

 

“They tried mugging a child, three against one, and you look at me like I’m the one who’s wrong here? I have to get money somehow! I don’t feel bad taking the wallets of villains or pieces of shit.”

 

“I guess not.”

 

“Seeing as you’re too nervous to ask the questions eating you alive, I’ll answer. No, I don’t have an Analysis quirk.”

 

“Then how did you think of all those things?”

 

“With my big boy brain, Shinsou.” Izuku gets some peach soda’s and chips and sits down, giving some to Shinsou.

 

“How does your real quirk work?”

 

“Regeneration. My body basically sews itself back together when I’m injured. Depending on my emotional state, the time can vary. Today, what you saw was very slow.”

 

“You were in shock.” Izuku nods. “Thank you, by the way.” His eyes snap up to Shinsou.

 

“I didn’t do anything?”

 

“Shut up.”

 

“But I-”

 

“Midoriya, shut the fuck up for two seconds. You saved me twice today, even after I followed you! You knew I was following you, didn’t you?” He nods, “Yesterday you helped me score first in the course. Hell, without you I wouldn’t have gotten into the hero course.”

 

“What do you mean?”

 

“At the exam, you called me to help Uraraka, and it gave me enough points to almost pass.”

 

“Almost.” Izuku points out. I didn’t help you.

 

“I was put into the hero course after someone’s acceptance got revoked. I was told Oni caught a student doing something worth expelling.” They couldn’t have…

 

“They told you that?! My privacy!”

 

“They said I was only told to explain why I was getting put into the hero course. They wanted to be transparent about it. So, thank you, Midoriya.” Izuku watches Shinsou’s eyes looking around the apartment, landing on one spot. It’s the outline of Izuku’s body.

 

“I died there!” He says, a bit too happily. Shinsou spits out his soda, and Izuku has to pat his back to keep him from actually choking.

Chapter Text

“What do you mean you died there?” Shinsou asks, wiping his mouth with a napkin.

 

“My house was set on fire, when I came home from school it was already too far gone. But my mom was in here. I tried finding her…” He trails. “And when I decided I had to get out, that support beam over there fell.” He points to the scar over his left eye. “That’s how I got this!”

 

“Wait, why do you have scars if you heal?”

 

“I have a theory that if there’s emotional trauma tied to an injury, it scars. A lot of emotional trauma though.” Shinsou studies Izuku’s face, before his eyes widen in realization.

 

“You’re the cousin, aren’t you. Bakugou was right.” Izuku nods. “That’s why you have autopsy scars? Wait, did they do an autopsy on you?”

 

“I think so? I don’t remember what happened between when I died and woke up.” At this point, Shinsou is pacing around the room and sipping his soda. He must love conspiracies.

 

“Do you get sick? Or is it only physical stuff?”

 

“I can get sick, just not as bad or as long as normal people.” That’s what’s on his mind? Really?

 

“Back up a second, why does Bakugou hate you so much?” Oh let’s spill the drama!

 

“Until the day of this accident, I was believed to be quirkless.” Shinsou tenses. Yeah, people tell you that you have a villains quirk, but there’s still nothing worse than being quirkless. “For whatever reason, he always thought I was looking down on him. We both wanted to be heroes. Always. He thought with a great quirk like his, he’s destined for greatness. According to that logic, I must’ve been the worst. Nothing but a stepping stone in his path.”

 

“If he knows you have a quirk, wouldn’t he hate you less?” Izuku shakes his head at the notion.

 

“Mikumo Midoriya is dead. Legally speaking, I no longer exist.”

 

“Mikumo…?”

 

“My name wasn’t always Izuku, Shinsou. I had to change it. This entire identity you see before you is fake. I’m not real.” It’s true. All he ever was is Mikumo, who’s long dead. “Since dying, I’ve been Oni almost exclusively for the past few years.”

 

“So, it’s like you’re Oni, and Izuku Midoriya is the secret identity?” Izuku laughs at that. I suppose you’re right.

 

“I have work to do later, so I have to get my homework done now. You can stay as long as you want.” Midoriya sits back down at his kitchen table, pulling out the stacks of files Aizawa gave him. He pulls out his laptop and gets to work. “Eraser gave me all this shit on purpose.” He angrily mumbles.

 

“Why’s that?”

 

“He thinks that if I get more work, I can’t patrol as often. So to spite that greasy fuck, I’m going to finish this tonight and patrol!” Shinsou laughs, “What?”

 

“You two really are fond of each other, aren’t you?” I’ll pretend he didn’t say that. “You can’t blame me for thinking he’s your dad, right?”

 

“No, I can. I will blame you, actually.” They both laugh and settle in to a quiet study period. Shinsou takes the time to do his homework as well. Most of the time, Izuku and Todoroki text, making small talk. It’s only when Todoroki tries to video chat him, does it throw him off. “Shit.” He makes a dash for his bedroom and gets his Oni mask, putting it on and racing back out to the kitchen.

 

“Your UA uniform would still show.” Shit. Izuku panics, taking his shirt off entirely. Shinsou laughs, covering his mouth with his hands, aware that Izuku is trying to pick up the call. "Your scars are pretty Identifiable too.” God dammit. The call sends Todoroki to voicemail. Now I have to call back, or I’ll feel bad. He grabs a plain black T-shirt out of his room. “Better.”

 

“Hello?” Izuku asks, when Todoroki picks up again.

 

“Hello, Izu. I hope I’m not calling at a bad time.” Shinsou perks his head up, no doubt recognizing the voice.

 

“No, no, you’re good. I just had to put some clothes on.”

 

“Meaning your mask?” Izuku nods. “I see. I want to know why you’re not scared of being caught.” It’s kind of weird to hear him talk with actual emotion.

 

“I have nothing to lose, really.” He thinks a moment. “I know everyone who’s investigating me, so I can BS my way out of it.” Todoroki tilts his head.

 

“BS?”

 

“Bullshit, Todoroki. I mean I can weasel my way out.” Todoroki nods with understanding.

 

“I don’t think you do know everyone on the team. My classmate was added today, interning under Eraserhead-”

 

“Should you be telling me this?” Izuku asks. Imagine if he were to befriend someone else the law’s against!

 

“No.” A pause, “I want to, though. I feel like you can be a friend. I haven’t had one before, and I don’t know what lengths they would go to each other.” Oh my god.

 

“I think I need a moment, that was too precious. Holy shit.” Izuku laughs. He only laughs harder upon seeing Todoroki’s lost expression. “I...Ohmygod… I really appreciate you trying to help, but I don’t want you getting involved.”

 

“I don’t understand.” Todoroki says after a moment. Shinsou is respectfully being quiet, but intensely listening off screen.

 

“You’re training to be a hero, I can’t let you-”

 

“That’s not what I mean.” He cut me off, rude. “I don’t understand how a vigilante like you can be so close to being a hero, yet get treated like a villain.” Both Izuku and Shinsou stare at the phone with odd expressions. He’s genuine.

 

“Oh.” Is all Izuku can say for a moment, “Is your dad home? Are you actually safe talking to me like this?”

 

“Ah, yeah. My father gives me complete privacy with two things: My room, and my phone. He thinks it makes his harsh, abusive training alright to do. The moment I could, I soundproofed my room, to help me feel like I actually have something of my own.” Ow, my heart.

 

“Your father’s a dick.”

 

“Yes.” For a split second, Todoroki almost smiles. “That’s why seeing you prank him yesterday made me happy. I’m happy that someone else sees him for the monster he is.”

 

“Send me pictures of Endeavor.”

 

“What?”

 

“I’ve decided, I’m doing an Anti-Endeavor campaign. I don’t want him being any sort of authority figure.” Or a father figure, for that matter.

 

“I.. Thank you, Izu.”

 

“Stop, before my heart melts with all this Power of Friendship shit.”

 

“Okay.” I’m starting to learn that Todoroki carries all emotions in his eyes.

 

“I have to go, I have work to do.”

 

“Okay, I’ll talk to you later.”

 

“Sounds good.”

 

“And Izu? Stay safe. Please.” Todoroki’s the one to hang up first. Shinsou Immediately speaks up.

 

“Todoroki knows?”

 

“No? He doesn’t know I’m Oni. He knows Oni, and has befriended Oni.”

 

“But doesn’t know that you, Izuku, are Izu?! He doesn’t realize he’s just calling you a cuteass pet name?”

 

“Aw, you said it’s cute.” Izuku teases, getting an eye roll from Shinsou. “But yeah. During the Endeavor thing yesterday, he caught me on the roof. Turns out we bonded over our mutual hatred of his father.”

 

“You were the one who did that yesterday! Oh my god, that’s amazing.” He gives a tired chuckle. Shinsou always seems like he’s running on empty. Insomnia, maybe?  “So Endeavor’s really a bad guy?” Izuku solemnly nods.

 

“He’s a trash monster.”

 

“Damn. Well, okay. I’ll help.” Izuku does a mental double take.

 

“What are you talking about?”

 

“You’re not the only one with a secret Identity, Oni.” Shinsou gestures for Izuku to come over, and he types something on his laptop. It’s a Youtube channel.

 

 

“Are you telling me that you're Catspiracy?” Oh my god. I’ve been subscribed to him for years. He makes Conspiracy Theory videos about anything and everything! Shinsou nods, a grin pulling at his lips.

 

“You a fan?” Izuku nods like the fanboy he is. I didn’t recognize him without his purple cat mask, but it still feels like I should’ve known! He has millions of subscribers. With one series, he could get a following against Endeavor. Shinsou, you sly fuck. Upstaging the main character!

 

“Doing a series against the number two hero could ruin you.” Izuku realizes.

 

“I’m willing to go down for a cause if it’s good enough.” Oh my god. We could win. “Give me enough proof and there’ll be no need for the conspiracy warning at the start of my next series.”

 

“Have I told you that you’re a great friend?”

 

“I uh, wasn’t aware that we were friends?” Izuku rolls his eyes.

 

“I told you my trademarked Tragic Backstory, and you revealed that you’re a decently famous Youtuber, and you don’t think we’re friends yet? I saved your life! You said so! What, do we have to go skinny dipping together, or go an a mystical adventure toge-”

 

“I get it. Fine. You’re my friend. Happy?” Izuku nods.

 

“I’m going to suit up. You can stay here if you want. If you leave, make sure you lock the door.”

 

“Okay.”

 

“Don’t open the door for anyone. Period. I never come through the front door, so if someone knocks, don’t answer it.”  Shinsou visibly swallows and nods.

 

Once in his Oni costume, he grabs the supplies for a long awaited project he’s been planning. He makes sure to give Shinsou his Oni contact information, just in case something happens.

 

“Midoriya, what are you doing with all that paint?” Shinsou warily asks.

 

“I’m advertising.” The ominous tone he uses doesn’t seem to sit well with Shinsou. He’s using his bo staff to hold paint buckets on either end of the stick, resting on his shoulders. He has a backpack on as well, carrying his brushes and rollers.

 

Without another word to Shinsou, he leaves the house.


 

 

It’s surprisingly easy to walk around town carrying paint like this, no one seems fazed by it. As long as he doesn’t actually run into villains tonight, he’ll be okay. There are two billboards he’s been eyeing for this project. He walks an hour on foot to the first location, often taking breaks for the sake of not overworking himself. It takes him a few trips, but he gets all the paint buckets onto the walkway. He has four paints: yellow, red, blue, and white. In his backpack are quite a few mixing trays and other supplies. It takes him two hours to create a masterpiece.

 

Borderline abstract paintings of Detective Tsukauchi and Eraserhead in a heart, reading “I love my dads! -Oni” in big green lettering.

Oh I can’t wait to see their reaction. You want to catch me? I want an uproar. Maybe, Izuku just likes to fuck with them. Either way, he likes to feel it’s justified.

 

Next is the more important billboard, not too far from Endeavor’s office. It’s actually an Endeavor billboard. I just want to spice it up.

 

Catspiracy:

Are you doing something Anti-Endeavor rn?

 

His username!

 

Oni:

About to, why?

 

Catspiracy:

Can you take a video of your process? It’ll be great footage.

 

He’s a nerd. He’s totally a geek!

 

Oni:

Say no more.

 

Izuku places his phone on a tree branch a good distance from the billboard. Once the camera starts rolling, he makes a mad dash to the billboard and turns to the camera.

 

“So, in case you haven’t realized it yet, I’m Oni.” Should I speak to the camera? “The following video is a message to the number two hero, Endeavor. I don’t mean number two because of his ranking, I just mean he’s a piece of shit.” With that, Izuku starts painting. It takes considerably less time, because the image of Endeavor is already here. In the end, he paints a bikini over the man’s image, devil horns and other accessories,  along with a note. Izuku turns to the camera to read it aloud.

 

“This is war. War against Endeavor and his villainous ways. I am Oni, and I will strike you down.” He hops down from the billboard without another word, sending it to Shinsou immediately. He gets a text message.

 

Eraserhead:

I really hate you.

 

Oni:

Ouch.

 

Eraserhead:

I’m an underground hero, I can’t be up on a billboard for the media to catch wind of! And stop telling people I’m your father.

 

Oni:

You are though, long lost, v sad.

 

Eraserhead:

There are several reasons why I couldn’t be your father, and all of them are valid, unlike you.

 

[Eraserhead is offline]

 

Oh my god, he really likes me!

 


 

 

At home, Shouta mourns over the apparent news that he now has a son. I’m glad Hizashi takes these jokes for what they are, illogical jokes. He’s looking over all the video and audio for each battle exercise, but there’s one major error that’s sure to create a headache for him. Unfortunately, he has to pick up the phone to solve it.

 

“Young Aizawa, how are you!” The voice booms over the phone. It takes him a bit of courage not to hang up right away.

 

“I’m reviewing the battle exercise that Shinsou, Midoriya, Bakugou, and Uraraka did. About 35 percent of the exercise is all corrupted data.” There’s a small chuckle on the other end of the phone.

 

“Bakugou made a large blast with his gauntlet, and the heat ruined a good portion of the cameras and earpieces. Shinsou and Midoriya won the exercise, but stayed in the area without cameras for the duration of the exercise.” All Might, you god damned fool.

 

“And you let the battle go on after losing both visual and audio of them?” Shouta asks vemonously.

 

“Uh… Yes?”

 

“All Might, with either visual or audio intact, you can assume they are okay and let the battle continue. With neither, you assume they are nothing but splatters on the wall and you call off the round to ensure they are not.”

 

“I understand, but Young Bakugou was nearby and he didn’t speak up if they were injured by the blast. I just assumed they were alright.”

 

“You mean you let Bakugou, the one who tried to murder Midoriya within minutes of meeting him, be the ultimate decider of the match continuing?” Shouta tries hard to keep the poison out of his voice, but he is furious.

 

“...Yes.” He sounds sorry, good. But sorry doesn’t cut it as a hero, All Might.

 

“Are you aware that Midoriya is terrified of fire quirks? He could have frozen up at the sight of Bakugou and died on impact, All Might. I don’t even want to know why you let that matchup start in the first place.” There’s silence from All Might, he must be thinking it over.

 

“I’m sorr-”

 

“I am not the one you owe apologies to.”

 

“I suppose you’re right.” At this point, Hizashi snickers at the sight of Shouta’s hair angrily lifting up, and how his eyes flicker into red as he can barely contain his fury.

 

“All Might, I know you’re new to teaching and all, but remember they’re children. I know you’re distracted trying to find a successor or whatever the hell I hear you talking about, but that’s no excuse. If you do something this stupid like this again and hurt one of my students, I will single handedly take you down myself.” While I mean every word of that threat, I didn’t want to say it so directly. “Do I make myself clear?”

 

“Y-Yes Sir.” Heh, ‘sir’.

 

“Good.” Aizawa hangs up on the Symbol of Peace, glaring when Hizashi starts laughing out loud. If Midoriya was Oni, we could’ve had evidence that he healed himself if hurt. But no, All Might had to be a noob.

 

“I was really hoping you’d call them your kids, not your students. You crazy mother hen.” Shouta throws his pen at Hizashi.

 


 

 

Opening the window to his apartment, Izuku’s hit by the smell of food, and it makes him realize just how hungry he’s been.

 

In the kitchen, there’s a few bags of take out, and Shinsou is still there, eating and working at a computer.

 

“Hey.” Shinsou greets.

 

“I’m actually surprised you’re still here.” He admits. Shinsou just shifted uncomfortably, maybe he doesn’t want to go home?  “What’s all this?”

 

“I’m editing, and I got hungry. I went out and got some food, and I’m going to make you eat some.” Going to make me, huh?

 

“Why’s that?”

 

“Because you have almost nothing here and it genuinely scares me. If you kick ass like that on empty, imagine what you’d do at full power.” Izuku snorts at the statement of ‘full power’ and looks at what Shinsou got.

 

“I know I have nothing here, I need to go grocery shopping!” Shinsou laughs at the sound of Izuku’s whiny, shrill voice. He grabs a takeout container and starts eating. His eyes widen a bit at the food itself, forgetting how good it could be.

 

“When…. When was the last time you had a homemade meal?” The purple-haired boy must have noticed his reaction.

 

“I was twelve.” He says simply. Izuku notes the sadness that takes over Shinsou’s eyes for a split second as he thoughtfully hums.

 

“You’re crazy. Calling out the two investigating you, as well as calling out someone you’re going to investigate. You’re insane.” Shinsou laughs.

 

“That, I am.”

 

“You’re chaotic. Just pure, chaotic lawlessness.” And it’s great. That’s what you have to say next. The two eat for a while, just enjoying each other’s company. Shinsou speaks up, not meeting Izuku’s eyes. “Why did you become a vigilante?” Well, his ass is already dragged into my life, might as well finish my backstory and get a completion achievement  or some shit.

 

“The day I died, I woke up in the morgue.” Shinsou immediately puts his chopstick down, “I was attacked on the way home. I don’t think I really knew what was happening. He killed me again. All Might saved me, thinking I just got a cut on the neck. I asked him if I could be a hero without a quirk.”

 

“He said yes, right?” If he had, I wouldn’t be this.

 

“I asked if I could do it with a regeneration quirk. He said no. He said he didn’t see how it could help others. It’s like he said my quirk is selfish!” Izuku barks out a bitter laugh. “I think… I think I snapped that day. I decided that I’d be my own hero, one that can help people by doing whatever is necessary. Even if the law’s against me.” Shinsou listens intensely, before his eyebrows scrunch up in confusion.

 

“Is that why your scared of All Might?”

 

“I’m not scared of All Might!” He protests, “I think seeing him just reminds me too much of literally the most traumatic experience of my life. Hell, that day could be called ‘Trauma: The Musical’, and he’d be a starring role.” Stop holding in that laugh! C’mon, laugh at my pain! Oh god, his face just went in to conspiracy mode-

 

“Why doesn’t he know about your quirk then? Shouldn’t he know your Analysis quirk is fake?” Izuku shrugs.

 

“He’s the Symbol of Peace. He saves countless lives everyday. I don’t expect him to remember a nobody like me.”

 

“That’s what you’re doing! You’re forcing the world to remember you. Carving your name into history itself!”

 

“Pump the breaks. This isn’t some superhero manga.” Who knows.

 

They continue their chat, making small talk here and there. Shinsou has made Izuku realize just how lonely he’s been the past few years, and he gets the feeling that Shinsou needs this just as much as he does. Silently, Izuku swears to keep him out of the dangers that come with his lifestyle for as long as possible. He's not a hero yet, he should have the rest of his childhood. 

 

Shinsou spends the night, both of them doing their respective projects. As it turns out, two insomniacs in a room together combine into one large insomniac, creating a brutal all-nighter.

 

Chapter Text

The next morning in homeroom, Shouta calls Midoriya up to his sleeping bag.

 

“Did you get those papers signed?” Midoriya nods, going through his backpack. The kid pulls out almost thrice as many papers as he was given.

 

“Yes, sir. I got the um, reports done. All of them.”

 

“Midoriya, I told you there was no deadline.” You little shit, trying to make me think that if you did this, you couldn’t have done those billboards? Well played, problem child.

 

“I got excited, I’m sorry.”

 

“There’s no need to apologize,” Shouta starts, “As long as this is good work, it’s alright. I don’t want you overworking yourself for the sake of progress, got it? Sleep is important.” Midoriya guiltily looks down.

 

“I understand.”

 

“Good, now go sit down. I have to address some stuff with you guys.” Midoriya nods, leaving Shouta. The man goes up to the podium, calling the attention of his class. They immediately fall into silence. Good. “Shinsou, Midoriya, Bakugou, Uraraka. The reports on your Battle Simulation is lacking, because information was lacking. Uraraka, you are the only one with a full report, seeing as you could be both heard and seen the whole time.” The girl nods. “You three. From what I understand, Bakugou set off a blast, against All Might’s orders, and almost killed you.” Shouta looks at Bakugou. “Is that correct?”

 

“I didn’t-”

 

“Did you, or did you not set off a potentially lethal blast that ruined our surveillance equipment?” Shouta repeats, stepping closer to the blond. He feels the weight of his hair slowly lifting from his shoulders.

 

“I did.” Bakugou huffs.

 

“Did All Might tell you not to?” He nods, “Then I expect you to listen the first time.” Shouta seethes. “This goes for all of you. Listen up.” He takes a moment to calm down, walking back to the center of the front. “If you defy a teacher’s orders, consider yourself gone.”

 

“Yes, sir.” The kids pipe up here and there.

 

“If you do something you know could kill your classmate, consider yourself gone. Yes, there is fighting in this school. We are heroes, not murderers.”

 

“Yes, sir.”

 

“Lastly, if any of you become aware that you no longer have visual on a classmate, or can no longer hear them, use your common sense. Is there a chance of them being hurt? Dead? I expect you all to look out for each other.”

 

“Yes, sir.”

 

“Now, back to the incomplete file. Shinsou, tell me what happened when the CCTV cut.” Shinsou seems to be the most indifferent of the three. I can trust what he says happened.

 

“Bakugou said we’d live if we dodged, and pulled the pin. I was in front, and I froze,” He’s admitting his shortcomings, that’s a good sign. “Midoriya jumped between us and tackled me out of the way. He got us out of the direct path. Our costumes got a bit burnt, but both of us only got a few bruises.” Nothing about Midoriya actually getting hurt, huh? Well, Shinsou said they both have bruises.

 

“Alright then. That’s all for now.” Oh, right. “Midoriya, Shinsou. All Might wants to speak with you in his office. He wants to personally apologize for his bone-headedness.” As soon as I said it, Midoriya looked a bit sick. He looks like he suppressed it well enough. The boys nod and leave the room. I really hope All Might knows how to correctly apologize.

 


 

 

As soon as the two are a bit down the hall, Hitoshi stops Midoriya.

 

“Breathe.” He instructs, aware that his friend is about to have an anxiety attack. They take a few moments to try and calm Midoriya down, but they don’t work. “You’re not going to be alone. I’ll be there with you, remember?” Midoriya nods, but doesn’t actually seem to process what Hitoshi says. He’s starting to hyperventilate a bit. “ Midoriya, can you answer me?” He asks, hoping to help him calm down by force. He can’t calm down enough to verbally respond. He said he wasn’t scared of All Might! Hitoshi feels eyes on him.

 

Down the hall, Aizawa watches the situation intently. He looks concerned for Midoriya. The shorter boy stumbles back, letting himself crash onto the floor, starting to outright panic. He risks his life every day without showing fear, yet this is what gets him. At this point, Aizawa is already racing towards them, worried for his student. I guess even if he knows Midoriya is Oni, he’s still his student.

 

“What happened?” Aizawa asks Hitoshi.

 

“I don’t think I should say, to be honest.” What else WOULD I say?

 

Shinsou.” Aizawa says in such a tone that Hitoshi feels forced to answer.

 

“Midoriya is scared of All Might. He denies it, but the mere sight of him gets him like this.” Aizawa furrows his brows, calculating.

 

“You mean this hero fanboy is scared of the hero to fanboy?” Shinsou nods, realizing how ridiculous it sounds. “Any idea why? Did you see All Might say anything to him.”

 

“No.”

 

“Are you sure?” His eyes flickered red. He knows that I know something. Sorry, Midoriya.

 

“Fine. He said that he met All Might once, and he told him that he could never be a hero. It messed him up pretty badly.” Holy shit, I’ve never seen Aizawa look so angry before.

 

“He said WHAT?” The man yells, picking Midoriya up and walking to the teachers lounge. Not knowing what else to do, Hitoshi follows. It’s sort of funny, the way Aizawa stomps forward while gently carrying the boy. He is so parental.

Midoriya gets set down on what is apparently Aizawa’s couch. “Shinsou, stay with him please?” Hitoshi nods immediately.

 

In the corner of the room Present Mic is seen watching Aizawa with concern. Is this not a common occurrence? Aizawa storms off, presumably to go murder All Might. Hitoshi puts his focus into trying to calm Midoriya down.

 

How did my life end up like this?

 


 

 

I’m going to kill him. That’s it. His days as the Symbol of Peace are OVER. Shouta is reasonably furious, walking around the office to find All Might. The tired man can very clearly see Hizashi watching his every move. If I told you, you’d probably join me on my murder journey.

 

At the sight of the man’s blond bunny hair, Aizawa pounces.

 

“All Might.” Shouta growls, grabbing the grown man by the ear, dragging him out of the room and into a private office.

 

“Young Aizawa! What is this about! I haven't apologized to your students yet!” He’s scared. Good.

 

“Sit.” To anyone else, it may seem like Shouta’s the older of the two here. Honestly, all the shit Shouta has to deal with makes him feel four times his actual age.

 

“Are you alright, Youn-”

 

“Listen All Might. I just received some news that you told my student something you very well should not have.” Deep breathing, Shouta. “Have you met Midoriya before UA?” All Might does look like he’s really thinking it over.

 

“I may have, he looked very familiar to me, yes.” You don’t even remember traumatizing the poor kid?

 

“Shinsou just informed me that you once outright told Midoriya that he could not be a hero.” I really hate the fact that recognition sparked in his eyes. “Tell me what you remember.”

 

“I admit my memory of it is fuzzy, so please bear with me. A few years ago I saved the boy from a villain attack. He asked me if he could be a hero without using a quirk, or with his weak quirk.” Weak quirk?

 

“What quirk did he say?” This could be a the lead I need.

 

“I believe it was an Analysis quirk he said.” Or this new information is fucking up your old man brain and its previous memories!

 

“And you said?”

 

“I think I said that I don’t see how that quirk could help others. There’s no offense to it. I couldn’t think of how using other weapons could level the playing field for him.”

 

“So you said no.” Shouta concludes, barely able to contain the rage he feels. “All Might, I have a quirk that can’t be used for offense. I’m a pro! Why the fuck did you tell a child that he couldn’t be a hero!? That’s what training is for!” Even worse, if Midoriya is Oni, you could be the reason for a chaotic vigilante.

 

“I…” The Number One hero looks like he’s still trying to remember what happened, “I think it was my time limit that distracted me. I felt the transformation coming on and I was eager to get out of sight. Oh my gosh, I shattered a young boy’s dreams for my sake? I’m pathetic!”

 

“Yes, you are. Now instead of apologizing to the boy, this is a direct order: Stay away from Midoriya.” I feel like a restraining order would be the best apology he could get. Without waiting to hear the man’s dumb and overly noble response, he leaves.

 

Back in the teacher’s lounge, Shouta walks in to find Hizashi talking to the boys, who are both noticeably calmer. Now who’s the mother hen, Hizashi.

 

Another step towards them brings Midoriya’s eyes to Shouta, a hardened expression in them. It drops almost immediately, and Midoriya mouths words Shouta didn’t expect.

 

“Thank you.”

 


 

 

It’s been two weeks since Izuku’s literal breakdown in front of Aizawa, but the man’s never mentioned it. Every other day the two work for the internship. To outsiders, they seem like a mentor and student, happily working together for the sake of good. To them, they dance warily around one another, always finding out more yet never getting a step closer to their respective goals.

 

Izuku is acutely aware that All Might watches him from time to time, but hasn’t said a word to him. He’s also noticed that it may have something to do with the way Aizawa glares at All Might every time he’s in the same room as them.

 

“Everyone, change into your costumes and wait for the bus.” Aizawa instructs, watching the students go to the locker room and get ready for today's field trip.

 

“What do you think we’ll be doing?” Shinsou asks Izuku, hoping that the internship might allow insider knowledge. It doesn’t.

 

“Seeing as we’ve only been doing basic combat training, Aizawa might want us to start with basic rescue training.” Over the last two weeks, Shinsou and Izuku have become good  friends, aiding each other with their secret identities.

 

The speedpaint of Oni vandalizing Endeavor’s billboard has drawn massive attention to the Catspiracy channel. Everyone is on their toes, waiting for Shinsou to post something else about Oni. As a direct result, the media has been talking about Oni more often, and Izuku has decided he doesn’t really like the media. His plan has gotten one result that he was hoping for, and by all means, counting on:

 

Fake Onis.

 

There are copycat vigilantes running around acting like Izuku. So while Izuku is stuck being a fake sidekick to Eraserhead, he can watch the look on the man’s face when he sees Oni run by them with Izuku sitting right there. Eraserhead was, of course, quick to figure out that they’re fakes, but it still makes things more complicated for the hero.

 

“Where’s your costume?” Shinsou asks, watching Midoriya put on one of the gym uniforms. The only thing he could really bring was his utility belt.

 

“Our match with Bakugou really did a number on it. It’s still getting repaired.” For a second, Izuku sees anger wash over Shinsou at the mention of Kacchan. Shinsou still believes that Izuku ought to press charges against Kacchan.

 

“I see.” Is all he says. They join the rest of the class outside, being forced into lines of two by Iida. Is someone going to tell the poor guy that this bus doesn’t have normal rows? No? This’ll be a fun meltdown to watch. He likes his classmates, and every once in a while joins in on discussions with them, but it’s still a bit overwhelming to Izuku. They’re all so… cheery. Batshit bubblegum and stuff. This class makes me feel like I’d get a cavity if surrounded by them for too long.

 

Izuku bursts into laughter at the sight of Iida actually dying when he realizes the bus isn’t the standard kind.

 

“You’re a cruel person, Midoriya.” Shinsou chuckles.

 

“He just looks so defeated.” The boy wheezes, waddling onto the bus and dropping into one of the middle rows. Shinsou sits next to him, rolling his eyes. Todoroki passes them with a cold air, sitting further into the back. A part of Izuku’s heart hurts for him. Yeah, I know that technically it’s Oni who’s Todoroki’s friend, but it still kind of hurts to be so ignored by him. It’s almost like he hates me for trying to catch Oni, but likes me for being Oni. Oh god, what if he found out?! He’d die!

 

As the bus starts moving, the class breaks into smaller discussions.

 

“Shinsou, I tend to say what’s on my mind.” Tsuyu starts, “And you and Aizawa act a lot alike.” Both Shinsou and Izuku tilt their head at her. “You both have quirks dependent on human targets, and both of your hair always stands up. You guy have similar eyes and deadpan expressions. The same tired personalities, kero.” I’ve made this joke before, it’s all true.

 

“Is that all?” Shinsou asks narrowing his eyes a bit.

 

“You two are also weirdly protective of Midoriya, dude.” Kirishima pipes up, laughing as Izuku, Shinsou and Aizawa tense at the statement. Shinsou and Izuku exchange looks before breaking into laughter. The laughter is rehearsed, for this exact kind of scenario. “I’m serious!” Kirishima whines, now getting brushed off by more classmates.

 

The two boys let out a relieved sigh when the class moves onto other topics.

 

At the destination, the students get out and are ushered into the dome-shaped building. Inside is Thirteen, the Rescue Hero. They let out an excited sound and wave their hands, no doubt to help express their feelings without a face to show.

 

“Hello students, I am Thirteen, the Rescue Hero!” Izuku turns and sees Uraraka basically vibrating in place with happiness. Must be her favorite. Aizawa and Thirteen exchange a few hushed words, and Izuku locks onto the three fingers that Thirteen holds up.

 

They’re talking about All Might. His time is up for the day? Izuku almost feels bad for knowing the man’s top secret, but it’s not like he found out on purpose! Often times, Izuku would see All Might on security footage shifting in between his two forms. Assuming that the skinnier form is something the public shouldn’t know, Izuku has yet to tell anyone. I don’t like him, but that doesn’t mean I can do something so disrespectful. It could be All Might trying to maintain a secret identity, just as I am.

 

“What are they saying?” Shinsou signs.

 

“All Might’s not coming.” They’re careful not to be obvious that they’re signing, because Kouda knows Sign as well. Shinsou gives a solemn nod and drops his hands. Shinsou doesn’t dislike All Might, he’s just lost a bit of respect for the man.

 

“As some of you may know, my Quirk is called Black Hole. It’s a very destructive power that I have. It can very easily be used to ruin lives. To kill.” Shinsou just tensed up. “But! I am a hero, able to wield this power to help other. I use something people think is for destruction, and clear a path to safety for people…” Izuku zones out, the hairs on the back of his neck standing up. He feels like he’s being watched. No. He knows he’s being watched. It’s obvious that Aizawa feels the same. Izuku’s dropped a bit lower, ready to fight yet not in a fighting stance.

 

“Midoriya?” Iida asks, interrupting Thirteen. Aizawa meets Izuku’s eyes. The boy opens his mouth to speak, but snaps his teeth shut and looks the center of the plaza.

 

“Eraserhead.” Izuku says in a low voice, nodding behind him. I really hope that using his hero name would tip him off without letting the villains know. It’s clear that Aizawa understands, because his goggles are already on. Black mist seeps into existence in the middle of the main plaza. One by one, dozens of villains start pouring out. Whether he wants to or not, Izuku feels himself slipping into vigilante mode.

 

“Is the exercise starting?” Sero takes a step forward, getting stopped by Aizawa.

 

“No. Stay back! These are real villains.” The students move back. “Whatever you guys do, do not engage.” Aizawa pleads, his eyes settling on Izuku’s longer than the others. Like hell I won’t! You can’t expect me not to fight!  Before Izuku can speak up, Aizawa turns and launches towards them. That’s not your fighting style! You’re an underground hero who specializes in ambush and capture methods! God dammit, Eraser! You’ll die! A distant part of Izuku realizes that Eraserhead is fully aware of his chances, that he’d be more than willing to die for his students.

 

Izuku’s body moves before his mind catches up, the only thing stopping him are the grounding hands wrapped around his arm. He meets Shinsou’s desperate eyes, and falls back. Even then, Shinsou doesn’t let go of his arm. He knows that moment he lets go, I’ll be gone.

 

“It seems that you all became aware of the situation sooner than we hoped.” The class turns around, meeting a face made of the black mist. “Which one of you brats was it?” No one speaks up, but Izuku sees his classmates giving him looks. “My, my. This is very telling body language you all have. I’ll just have to get rid of this brat first.” If I move, he could move the portal. It might take other classmates instead of me. Dammit   Thirteen moves to act, but is too late. The ground beneath Izuku softens into nothingness and he feels himself falling. He realizes that as the portal swallows him, he feels a pull.

 

Shinsou never let go of him.

Chapter Text

The mist drops the two boys, throwing them towards the ground harshly. Izuku’s the first back on his feet, already checking for enemies.

 

“We’re still in the facility.” He observes, helping Shinsou to his feet. Why? That guy could’ve dropped us anywhere. He must either need to see a location or need exact coordinates.

 

“That was not pleasant.” Shinsou pats dirt of himself, also looking around. They’re in the Ruins Zone, full of partially destroyed buildings, probably from an earthquake. There’s an odd shuffling sound nearby.

 

“Shinsou, get behind me.” The taller boy does so without question. It’s probably not much cover, seeing as I’m short as fuck and you’re lanky as all hell.

 

Villains start coming into the room, only a few. Stay cautious of their quirks. Izuku fights off as many as he can manage, making sure Shinsou doesn’t have to engage in combat.

 

“What are you here for?” Shinsou asks. You’re a genius!

 

“Do you really think we’d just-”

 

Take out your comrades. ” The villain’s quirk appear to be controllable fingernails. That’s pretty gross. And it looks painful. Izuku and Shinsou watch as fingernails extend and tie up the villains, slamming them onto the ceiling and floor. How much keratin is in your diet?! “Midoriya.” Izuku turns, and wants to do a happy dance when Shinsou hands  him a metal pipe. A DIY bo staff! 

 

“A gift? You shouldn’t have!” He pretends to giggle, smacking the brainwashed villain over the head. “Wait, does it hurt you if I forcibly end the brainwashing like that?”

 

“No, no. It just feels like I’ve had my puppet’s strings cut.” That sounds SO badass. They make their way out of the remaining floors of the building using the same strategy. I can see the main villains from here. More importantly,

 

I can see Eraserhead.

 

“We have to-”

 

“It’s too dangerous. You’ll expose yourself as Oni.” Shinsou doesn’t give Izuku the chance to even voice his idea.

 

“I have to! I can’t watch them die.” His body keeps pumping out adrenaline, making him jittery, restless.

 

“I can’t watch you die.”

 

“I can’t die! I won’t!” He should know this.

 

“But what if they find a way.” For once, Shinsou’s eyes no longer seem tired. They’re wider, filled with panic and fear.

 

“I’m going. I can bring you back to the main entrance if you want to be safe, but I’m not staying.” There’s a subtle shift in the air, Izuku looks around and swings down hard right above Shinsou’s shoulder. A formerly invisible man stands behind Shinsou, ready to bite down on his neck with razor sharp teeth. He falls to the ground and Izuku takes a moment to kick his ribs as hard as he can.

 

“Midoriya-” I’m not running away. His feet are already going towards the main plaza, he knows Shinsou is following. I won’t let you get hurt. I won’t let anyone get hurt.

 

They both freeze at the sight of a large bird creature snapping Eraserhead’s arm like a twig, twisting it around for good measure. Izuku’s already sprinting, his feet moving before he can think about it. I’m the only one who can defeat Eraserhead, not you guys! Please be okay. The bird fucker slams his head into the concrete. His breath catches, but his feet keep moving.

 

“Nomu, hit him with something big. I want a splatter!” He must be the main villain. The creature, Nomu, moves to the center fountain, ripping off a piece of the statue. Shit! Even if I can’t stop it, I can lessen the damage. I can take the direct hit. By time the Nomu throws the statue, Izuku is in front of Eraserhead. I feel like I’m dying. Stupidly, Izuku puts his arms up to brace. I can catch it. I have to. I will.

 

Miraculously enough, he does.

 

The force of impact sends him sliding back on the concrete, struggling to get his footing. He holds up the statue that’s too large for someone his size to actually lift. Izuku fights off the urge to yell. He can feel his muscles tearing and immediately repairing themselves as he holds the statue up, moving it away from Eraserhead. He doesn’t feel as much pain as he should, but that’s due to his system flooding with adrenaline.

 

I think I’ve read about this. In life or death situations, people can have something called Hysterical Strength. When the body pumps adrenaline, it also makes your body release stored up sugar, allowing it to fuel the muscles for things like this. Ow, fuck. I can feel my muscles ripping into ribbons.

 

He tosses the statue down with a large crash. He also sees Shinsou near the fountain, out of the villain’s sight. I don’t think I could do that again even if I wanted to.

 

“Kurogiri, is this the brat that gave us away earlier?” A man covered in hands wonders closer to Izuku, his voice scratches the air. “What, some kid with a little strength quirk is going to stop us?” What? That means they don’t know our quirks. Out the corner of his eye, he sees movement. Shinsou you idiot, stay back!

 

“Yes, Shigaraki. Though I doubt he will be troublesome for you to deal with.”

 

“Why are you here?” Izuku cuts to the chase.

 

“We brought a friend for All Might to play with. This is Nomu. A being made to kill All Might.” Kill All Might? It’s not impossible but…

 

“Nope.”

 

“Excuse me!?” The handyman, Shigaraki, asks.

 

“I said no. You’re not killing All Might. Do you want that in another language?”

 


 

 

Hitoshi watches on as his friend is consumed by his vigilante mode, taunting the villains and sassing them to hell and back. He creeps around them, out of their line of sight. If he can get Eraserhead out of there, they can all fall back. There’d be no need for Midoriya to stay and fight. Yes, he could intervene and brainwash one, but there’d be no winning. It looks like that Nomu thing is too braindead for Hitoshi to take over, and if he goes for the main monologuer, he could get warped away. If he goes for the misty guy, he’s at the mercy of whatever quirk that guy used to get those hands. Eraserhead won’t wake up, so there’s no chance of him erasing the mystery quirk.

 

His heart stopped when Midoriya threw himself in front of that statue, idly remembering stories of mothers finding the strength to lift cars off of their children. I don’t want another scare like that.

 

Midoriya is distracting the villains, buying time for pros to arrive. He could very well be buying time for Hitoshi to do what he needs to. An idea pops into Hitoshi’s head.

 

“Hey.” He calls to the handyman. “You really think you can kill All Might?”

 

“Ye-”

 

Stop the mist man.” The command takes hold of him as he lunges for his partner. The theory that the Nomu is braindead must be correct, because it just stands there, idle. The two main villains fight, giving Hitoshi time to get closer to Eraserhead.

 

“You know, Shigaraki here has a quirk that relies on all five fingers touching something. It doesn’t work on things like air, water, sand….. And Me.” He pushes Shigaraki back, and Hitoshi feels the mental weight of the puppet lifted away from him. Shigaraki starts screaming incoherently, viciously scratching hit neck. Dammit.

 

“What, are you throwing a tantrum?” Midoriya snorts “Boo fucking hoo. Go suck on a tit.” I’d say he’s no longer Midoriya right now. He’s Oni. Hitoshi doesn’t know if it’s a good thing Eraserhead hasn’t woken up yet or not.

 

“What did you say to me?” The man drops his hands, slowly staggering towards Midoriya. “You dumb brat. You haven’t done anything!”

 

“I haven’t?” There’s something animalistic in Midoriya’s eyes. Hitoshi wonders if that’s the reason he wears a mask. If I had to say what animal Midoriya looked like right now, I’d say he’s a Chimera. There’s so many vicious traits stuffed into one person. He’s never felt scared of Midoriya, but he absolutely fears for the safety of those who make enemies of him.

 

“No! “

 

“Shigaraki, you have the Nomu at your disposal. You can kill this child with it.” Kurogiri reminds.

 

“No, no. I want to hurt this brat myself. Though…” He laughs with a strained voice. Did you scratch through straight to your vocal cords? “I want to do something that’d actually hurt him.” Hitoshi sees Midoriya tense. “I just have a feeling it’s not him I have to hurt to do that.” Shigaraki looks Hitoshi in the eyes and lunges. He crosses his arms over his face and waits for the pain.

 

It never comes.

 

Hitoshi opens his eyes when a blood curdling scream threatens to burst his eardrums.

 

“Midoriya!” He screams, seeing his friend in his place.

 

“As you can feel, my quirk is called Disintegration.” The villain laughs.

 

The villain has his hand on Midoriya’s chest, turning it to dust and ash. Midoriya screams as his body rapidly rebuilds what’s lost around the villains hand. Hitoshi stands frozen.

 

“Isn’t this fun! Oh I want you as a new toy.” Shigaraki coos, smiling at the boy.

 

“So first you’re literally inside me, then you say I’m a toy? Man you are fucked up on a mental and sexual level.” Midoriya grits his teeth and sasses, “At least put on some chapstick if you’re gonna go for a smooch.”   He wants me to go. I can’t.

 

“I want a trophy.” Shigaraki grabs Midoriya’s wrist with his free hand and disintegrates it. The boy goes back to screaming, there’s no doubt that it’s echoing through the plaza. We need to go before classmates start showing up. There’s blood spray all over Hitoshi and Midoriya. Yes, his body turns to ash, but the sudden rupture of his organs repeatedly cause outward sprays of blood. He took Midoriya’s hand.

 

He watches on, frozen in terror, as his friend kicks a leg up and knees the villain in the crotch.

 

“Bingo.” He sounds so tired. The villain falls back a bit but doesn’t stop turning Midoriya to ash. By making him mad, it keeps the villain’s attention drawn on him instead.

 

Why don’t the other two villains do something? The Nomu must have to take direct orders, and it seems like  Kurogiri isn’t allowed to act on his own. Shigaraki is the main villain, there’s no doubt.

 

You’re boring me.” Shigaraki hisses in Midoriya’s ear, removing his hand. It looks like after being in too much pain, Midoriya couldn’t regenerate as fast as he was falling apart.

 

“Hey! Pick on someone your own size!” Shit. Hitoshi sees Kirishima off to the right of them, yelling to the main villains. Bakugou and Todoroki are also there. Their eyes settle on Midoriya’s missing hand and how he’s missing most of his chest and stomach. Their expressions drop into different ones. Kirishima is scared, Bakugou is furious, and Todoroki is blank. Shigaraki turns to them, no longer interested in Midoriya.

 

Hitoshi takes his cloak off and catches Midoriya in it as he falls back. Being in too much pain can make someone pass out.

 

Now’s my chance, Shigaraki doesn’t want us anymore. Midoriya is unfortunately easy to carry. He doesn’t know if it’s from missing organs or just his naturally small figure.

 

“Where are you going?” Todoroki asks, eyes on the unconscious boy. What would Midoriya say?

 

“My Quirk isn’t effective here. Midoriya is dying. I saw a villain earlier with a healing quirk. I’ll make him heal Midoriya.” Todoroki nods, satisfied. “His Quirk is disintegration. All five fingers on you activates it.” Hitoshi sees some eyes widen, settling back on Midoriya.

 

“He took off his hand.” Kirishima breathes, looking at the hand Shigaraki carries. With permission, Hitoshi runs to the pile of villains, setting Midoriya down. It’ll look like I’m making a villain heal him. They’ll repeat the story to the cops. He unwraps his cloak, checking if Midoriya is healing. He takes the necklace off of the boy, putting it in his pocket. Losing this would hurt far more than any injury. He’s healing, but much slower than he’s seen in the past few weeks. All he needed to do was wait.

 

He’s going to keep his best friend safe.

 

The doors to the facility bust open, showing All Might. I’ve never seen him without that smile. He’s furious. Hitoshi watches on as All Might fights the Nomu, matching each other’s movements exactly. If that manchild sent that thing after us, we’d be dead. Or at least I would be. The sight of the Nomu regenerating sends chills down Hitoshi’s spine. The three boys left by the plaza are helping out All Might, but it looks like All Might wants them anywhere but there. They’re in the way. Midoriya stirs a bit, straining to sit up.

 

“Stop moving.” Hitoshi orders, “You need to rest.”

 

“What I need… Is to make sure everyone’s safe.” Midoriya tries to sit up to see the damage. Hitoshi moves the cloak a bit. He’s hardly healed at all. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say the disintegration is still eating away at him. That can’t be possible, right?

 

In a large blast, All Might knocks the Nomu out of the dome. It’s hard to hear what words are being exchanged. Shigaraki makes a a final move to kill a student, but his hand is shot. Shot? Hitoshi visibly relaxes at the sight of the pro heroes arriving, taking care of the students. Midoriya has his eyes fixated on something. When Hitoshi turns his head to see what he’s looking at, Midoriya mutters.

 

“Don’t look. I’m going to scream as loud as I can, and I need you to trust me.” What is he talking about? Midoriya takes a deep breath, and Hitoshi can feel something rattling in Midoriya's ribs. He screams. It’s almost like a banshee. The boys at the plaza turn to Midoriya, coming over immediately. All attention is drawn to their location. Why? He’d only do this if he wanted to distract from something else. He can’t be seen like this, he has to be protecting someone right now by doing this. Midoriya’s banshee screech is cut short by him dozing out of consciousness again.

 

Hitoshi picks Midoriya up and keeps him tightly wrapped in the cloak. It’s more red than purple now.


 

 

Izuku wakes up, bolting upright.

 

“Calm down.” His eyes snap up to Shinsou, recognizing the hands on his shoulders. They’re still at USJ, sitting along the wall outside. Cop cars are everywhere, as well as a few ambulances. I passed out? I passed out!? Every memory of pain rushes back to him as he moves to check his wounds. Hitoshi holds the cloak shut. “You’re healed. Don’t show off your scars. Just calm down.”

 

“Thank you.” Izuku says after a moment. That was the most unbearable pain I’ve ever felt, and I’ve been set on fucking FIRE. “Is everyone alright?” At that, Shinsou snorts.

 

“Worry about yourself.” A pause, “Yeah. Thirteen and Eraserhead are both hospitalized but expected to live. They wanted you brought to the hospital too.”

 

“Why didn’t they?” It would have been awfully confusing if they realized my identity wasn’t real. Or sent me into surgery only to find no wounds.

 

“I took care of it.” Oh my fucking god. That’s the vigilante tone of voice. Shinsou broke the law?!

 

“Did you fuckin’ brainwash the paramedics?!” There’s a small, embarrassed nod from Shinsou. I’m so proud of you.

 

“I don’t like your shit-eating grin, Midoriya.” This is like ‘baby’s first steps’!

 

“Thanks. You didn’t have to though. I know you don’t like using your quirk, I could’ve handled it myself.”

 

“You shouldn’t have to.” Shinsou doesn’t meet his eyes. “You saved me, I owed you.”

 

“Anything else happen between then and now?” Izuku asks, trying to catch up.

 

“I met Dad Number 2.”

 

“You talked to Tsukauchi?” He whispers aggressively. Shinsou nods. I told him about Tsukauchi’s quirk, and possibly ways to get around it. “What’d you say?”

 

“He questioned me, because we were with the main villains the longest. I pretty much alternated between telling the truth on what I could, saying ‘it all happened so fast’, or saying a vague answer that technically couldn’t be a lie. He didn’t call me out.” Izuku hums thoughtfully. “I was going on the mantra of ‘What would Midoriya do?’” Izuku laughs. I am NOT the role model you should be following.

 

“Ah, Izuku Midoriya, right? I see you’re awake.” DAD. Detective Tsukauchi comes over, softly shaking Izuku’s hand as he nods. Don’t snark. Don’t snark. Don’t snark. “How are you feeling?” He always asks this first to tell if we’re willing to lie right off the bat.

 

“Awful. Exhausted.” Tsuki nods, understanding.

 

“Would you like to come with me to answer some questions? If you’re feeling up to it.”

 

“I can answer the questions, but I’d rather stay here with my friend.” I feel like I don’t know how to talk to him like an actual person. Tsuki sits down across from Izuku, ready to talk.

 

“Tell me what you remember.” I am Izuku right now. I can do this.

 

“I knew villains were here before they showed themselves. Like people watching me.” He’s already writing down information. “The villain didn’t like that I ruined the surprise and warped me and Shinsou away. We took out the villains who attacked, but were never first to engage.” What next? Shinsou said he went with stuff I’d come up with. So what would I say, if Shinsou were saying it?

 

“You two made it to the main fight. Why?”

 

“I saw Aizawa.”

 

“That’s it? Not to take on the bad guys yourself?”

 

“I went because I couldn’t watch him die. I couldn’t stand the sight of him being hurt.” Something flickers in Tsukauchi's eyes.

 

“Shinsou told me that the Nomu creature threw a large statue at Eraserhead. What happened next?” He’s trying to trip me up. Did Eraser tell him that I’m a suspect?

 

“I stood in the way.” Don’t say any more than necessary.

 

Were you willing to die for your teacher?” There’s genuine concern in the question.

 

“I was willing to die for him, yes.” Not that I could. The sentiment is still there, though.

 

“I hope you know your teacher would not be pleased to hear that.” Especially if it’s me saying it. The gaze set on Izuku feels like Tsukauchi is analyzing him. Izuku nods in acknowledgement. “The main villain, Shigaraki, touched you for an extended time.” He nods again.

 

“It disintegrated a lot, I passed out.” He admits, not sure what else he could have said. I want to tell you how I sassed him! It was lovely! Splendid!

 

“May I see the damage? Seeing as Paramedics said you’re fine.” Izuku moves the cloak, exposing his healed skin.

 

“The scars are from something else. There’s no scarring from today.”

 

“I was told there was someone with a healing quirk. Elaborate?” This is where it counts.

 

“I passed out, Shinsou brought me to the villains. There was someone with a healing quirk over there.” Them being me. I can bullshit my way through this. “I woke up again at some point, screamed, and passed back out.”

 

“Can you describe the person that healed you?” God dammit. You and your reasonably sound questions.

 

“Short, plain looking. It all happened so fast.” Basically describing myself and providing excuses.

 


Alright. So far everything is correct.” Izuku tilts his head, feigning confusion.

 

“My quirk is called Human Lie Detector, making me just that.”

 

“That’s so cool!” He pretends to fanboy. “Can you like, tell if someone’s lying just through speech? Or through body language?”

 

“As much as I love questions like that, I can’t answer them. It might hinder my work some day.” Izuku nods in understanding. It’s not like I needed an answer, anyways. Tsuki writes something on his notepad, and hands over for Izuku to read. He must not want Shinsou hearing. “All Might said you screamed loud enough to get everyone's attention. Did you do that on purpose?” Izuku looks at Tsuki.

 

“Yes.”

 

“Why?”

 

“I had to save him.” Tsukauchi’s eyes go wide, before he offers thanks and runs off. Exhausted, he leans his head on Shinsou’s shoulder. “How are you feeling?”

 

“Like shit.” Izuku chuckles, wholeheartedly agreeing. “You caught that statue like it was nothing.”

 

“I think I’m going to call that super move Hysterical Strength. It takes a lot out of me. I’m dying.” Absentmindedly, Izuku reaches up to touch his necklace, ready to explode when he doesn’t feel it.

 

“I have it.” Shinsou says, handing him the necklace. “I took it in case it got ruined.” He cleaned the blood off of it and everything.

 

“Are you sure your quirk isn’t mindreading?”

 

“Who knows.” There’s a small moment of silence. “By the way, your story was almost perfectly aligned with what I told him. Did you ask yourself what I would say?”

 

“Pretty much.” With each interaction, the silence stretches longer.

 

“What are going to do after this?” You know me so well.

 

“We’ll go home. Then I’ll go visit Eraser, then probably Todoroki.” Shinsou hums.

 

After the student’s get the clearance to leave, they go take showers in the locker room. No one could stand the feeling of USJ on them, even if they faced no action. Izuku notices Shinsou hasn’t mentioned going to his own home.

 

“Aren’t you going to go home and let your parents know you’re alright? They’re probably worried sick.” Izuku asks, walking to the train station together.

 

“It’s fine.” The next words Shinsou says break Izuku’s heart into microscopic pieces. He’s made two more enemies in life.

 

“They don’t love me.”


 

In his office, Naomasa looks over all the papers regarding the attack at USJ. Some things aren't lining up with him, despite all of the student testimonies ringing in as truthful. Confused, he picks up the phone. 

 

"It's Tsukauchi. I hope you're alright, Eraserhead." He starts leaving a message. "If it were any other pro, I'd wait until a full recovery is made to get back to the case. Unfortunately, I know how you prefer to operate. I questioned your intern, Izuku Midoriya, with the thought that he's suspected as being Oni in mind. When asked if he was Izuku Midoriya, my quirk registered his affirmation as false."

 

Chapter Text

“Excuse me?” Izuku asks on the walk home from the train station. “They don’t love you?” Is this what motherly rage feels like?

 

“I’m adopted. I was adopted when I was thought to be quirkless.” What?  “Like it was a charity project for them. It’d make them look good.” I can remember a few times people have said things like ‘bless your soul’ when Mom told people I was quirkless. “Turns out, I was just a late bloomer.”

 

“You didn’t know how to activate your quirk?” Shinsou nods. I can imagine how hard it’d be to learn his quirk.

 

“I didn’t use it until I was seven or eight. It was on accident. My parents acted like it was okay when it happened, but I could hear them through their door. Talking about if it’d be best to put me up for adoption again because of my villainous quirk.” Izuku feels his breathing stop, heart aching. “They uh…. Decided to keep me. My father brought up a point that I could kill them in a sick act of revenge when I wanted to. Not if, when.” I have SO many things to say, but the words won’t come out. My throat burns. “They just decided it best to interact with me as little as possible. I tried being so nice to them, going out of my way to help them.”

 

“It didn’t work, did it?”

 

“No. They just saw it as another form of manipulation.”

 

“Give me your address.” The words are out of his mouth before he realizes it.

 

“No. I know that look. That’s the ‘I’m a vigilante and I’ll take the law into my own tiny hands’ kind of look.” Eh?

 

“Tiny? Tiny hands? You think that I have tiny hands?!” They break into laughter, lightening the mood a bit.

 

“Itty bitty baby hands, Midoriya.” To further demonstrate his point, Shinsou holds his hands up in a cat paw position. He waves one hand per word.

 

“Now I need your address for two reasons. I’ll get revenge on you.” Izuku thinks a moment. “Is that why you sleep over so much?”

 

“Yeah. They asked if I made a friend. I said yes. All they said was to make sure everyone in the house knew about my quirk. Like it’s a requirement to be friend’s with me.”

 

“They want you to come with a warning label?!” Izuku all but snarls.

 

“I guess.”

 

“Fuck them, live with me. I have room.”

 

“I practically do.” Shinsou shrugs. They get to Izuku’s apartment. Shinsou has officially gotten into the habit of climbing through the window as well. “You know, we don’t seem as shaken up as we should be.”

 

“That’s true. Don’t worry, this’ll probably resurface years from now in therapy.”

 

“Great, thanks.” He deadpans.

 

“You know, you really are a good friend. You were my voice of reason today.” Izuku comments absentmindedly, getting snacks for the two.

 

“Someone has to be.” They both eat, and Izuku starts getting ready to leave. “Are you sure you should be up and moving right now?”

 

“Yeah. if I disappear for the day, it could be tied to USJ. Besides, I’m fully healed.” Shinsou makes a noise in response, his face showing he’s utterly unconvinced. When Izuku walks out of his bedroom, Shinsou stares a moment. “What is wrong with you?” He laughs.

 

Izuku wears his Oni costume, except there’s a white T-Shirt over it with the name Oni on it in large black lettering.

 

“I think it’s funny.” Izuku defends.

 

“You would.” Shinsou is undeniably the most fashionable of the two, but Izuku would never give him the satisfaction of admitting it. The purple-haired boy works on his computer, not looking back up at Izuku. “You’re really going to see your boyfriend dressed like that?” Uh.

 

“Whomst the fuck are you talking about?” Izuku sputters. I’m going to see both Eraserhead and Todoroki, and this conversation could take a very dark, gross turn.

 

“You and Todoroki talk nonstop. I’d say you talk more than we do and I basically live with you.”

 

“Not true. Either way, shut up.” He glares at Shinsou, who laughs behind the safety of his laptop. “I’m going to see Todoroki to see how he’s doing. Also because he asked to see me.”

 

“Wonder why.”

 

“Fuck you. I'll slap that look off your face with my tiny hands.” Izuku hisses with no actual malice.

 

“If you’re going to his house, might as well get footage of you ruining Endeavor’s life. Honestly, marrying his son would do the trick.”

 

“Oh my god. If I had known this was your sick sense of humor, I would have never befriended you.” Shinsou raises an eyebrow in response.

 

“Yes. You would have.”

 

Izuku leaves the apartment, forcing what Shinsou said out of his mind. It’s weird walking the streets like this. They see that I’m Oni, yet no one alerts the authorities. Do people actually think that I do good for the world? The intern in Izuku takes over, and before he realizes it he’s walking into Eraserhead’s favorite coffee shop. The working barista stares at him. Oh my god. I didn’t even notice! Well, I might as well.

 

“Hi, can I get one large caramel iced coffee, and a large hot black coffee with a teensy bit of cinnamon in it?” Izuku starts getting his wallet out, but the barista shakes her head.

 

“There’s uh. There’s no need. You can k-keep your money.” Is she scared of me? She quickly turns and makes the drinks. Fuck you, I’m the nicest fucker to ever…. Fuck. Izuku keeps the money out anyways, waiting for his drinks. When she brings them back to the counter, he waves a hand to get her attention.

 

“Here.” He puts all of the money into the tip jar on the counter.

 

“Oh! Thank you!” Ha! I win! He thanks her and leaves with the drinks.

 


 

 

Now that Shouta’s gotten Hizashi out of the hospital, he can relax. Or, settle down as much as someone can in this situation. He’s been awake for the past hour or so, alarming all of the doctors. Hell, even Recovery Girl is baffled over his alertness. She warned that he’d be asleep for a while, considering how much she had to heal him. Shouta’s only awake because he’s used to being so tired.

 

The damn doctors won’t let me have coffee. Why can’t he? It’s not like he’s in critical condition anymore. He’s listened to Tsukauchi’s voicemail, feeling another headache coming on. Does that mean someone's pretending to be Midoriya? It's much more likely that Izuku Midoriya just isn't his real name. Shouta's worried that the kid's in deeper than he realizes.  Stupid brat saved my life. The audacity! A part of Shouta is very much so aware that without Midoriya, there may have actually been casualties today.  

 

Shouta feels haunted by the sound of him screaming in agony. He hates that he was just conscious enough to hear, yet not enough to do anything. He was helpless.

 

A knock at the door causes an eyeroll before he even knows who it is.

 

“Hey, Dad.” For fuck’s sake. He turns, seeing Oni out of some of his bandages.

 

 

“What do you want.” Oni crosses the room quietly, sitting down beside his bed. He hands Shouta one of the coffees in his hand. “I’m not thanking you.” He huffs, taking it.

 

“How are you feeling? I heard about what happened.” Yeah, heard.

 

“They’re calling themselves the League of Villains. Ever heard of them?” Oni shakes his head. “So they’re a group that an underground hero and a weasel of a vigilante have never encountered.”

 

“Shouldn’t you be resting?”

 

“I could ask you the same thing.” Shouta snarks back, “What do you think of the situation?” As much as I can’t stand the kid, it’s good to have the perspective from his side of the board.

 

“They’re either very secretive, or very new. I heard that all of the captured villains were only known for severely petty crimes. They weren’t gathered for strength.”

 

“Why’s that?”

 

“The masses won’t care if four super strong villains attacked a high school. They care if dozens of them do, no matter what their abilities amount to.” He’s right. That means they did it for attention. Shouta freezes when he takes a sip of the coffee. Black coffee with a dash of cinnamon. Something only Hizashi and Midoriya knows I drink. “Coffee’s good, thanks little intern.” Oni laughs. He did it on purpose. He knows that I know, but knows that I can’t do anything without proof.

 

“I thought you weren’t thanking little ol’ me?”

 

“The doctors won’t let me have coffee. This is called a public service.” There’s a small moment of silence. “So, how’d you get into the hospital while wearing that dumbass shirt?”

 

“First of all, this shirt is great. It’s my civilian look. Second, I looped the feed on the camera and set it to revert after a few minutes. The doctor’s were unfazed.”

 

“You didn’t hurt them?”

 

“I’m not a villain!” He actually sounds his age with the way he whines. Oni is on his phone, watching something. The eyes on his mask widen a bit, before he starts typing away.

 

Shouta feels his phone buzz, and has to hold back a chuckle when he opens it.

 

It’s security footage of Endeavor picking a wedgie, taken from his own home.

 

“You hacked his cameras?” Shouta raises an eyebrow at Oni. “Why?” It looks like he was just waiting to catch Endeavor doing something gross. 

 

“He’s an awful person.”

 

“Legally, I have to say that what you’re doing is against the law and you should stop.” Why does he hate Endeavor so much? Is it because of his fear of fire quirks? No. He’d just avoid the man. “On the other hand, I want to know what’s with your grudge against him.”

 

“Have you ever heard the story of Touya Todoroki?”

 

“No.”

 

“I think… Hearing that case will answer the most questions.” He switched from ‘story’ to ‘case’. I’ll remember the name.

 

Have you ever thought about how this affects his kids? You go to school with his son, you know.”

 

“I have considered it. It’s why I’m doing this.” Is Todoroki glad his father is being attacked? Is that why he has that burn scar…? The thought makes Shouta nauseas. Oni sticks the straw of his coffee under his mask, taking a sip without revealing anything. I wish I was healthy enough to apprehend this freak. I’ll settle to comprehend him instead.

 

“Why are you doing this? Any of this?” Oni hums a bit, no doubt pondering if he can truthfully answer.

 

“I have goals I need to meet.” Is all he says. Wow, thanks for the insightful answer. 

 

“How do your parents feel about this?” Shouta can’t help but feel a bit angry. Parents have to know that their kid goes missing almost every day.

 

“I don’t have any.” You told me that? Why did you give me a real answer? … Why do you sound so tired?

 

“Oni, do you want to be caught?”

 

“Eventually, just not right now. I have a few more things to do.” Shouta thinks it over.

 

“Is that why you purposely leave hints?” He nods, “Like getting me this specific coffee from my favorite place?”

 

“Call it a good guess.” You’re telling me the truth, yet deflecting small things like this?

 

“Are you doing this just for yourself?” Oni is so quick to shake his head that it appears he gave himself whiplash.

 

“I’d never do this if it were just for myself. What am I, Endeavor?” He snorts.

 

“Would you ever kill someone?” Shouta asks, curious. Oni narrows his eyes a bit, getting up.

 

“One specific person, yes.” I don’t like that answer. I could have done with a simple yes or no. He has a target.

 

“Where are you going?”

 

“You’re not the only one I had to make sure is okay.” With that, Oni waves and opens the window, promptly jumping out. He wanted to make sure I was alright? Dumb kid.

 

After thinking over all of the things the kid said, Shouta decides to call Midoriya’s mother. Oni said he didn’t have parents. Where does he live? How does he afford to survive? Why can’t he just give up? The most concerning information, strangely enough, is how Oni is indirectly admitting to being Midoriya. He’s only trying to buy time. For what? There’s something bigger than Endeavor going on.

 

Sighing, he dials the on-file number for the Midoriya household.

 

“Hello?” A woman’s voice answers. She sounds frantic.

 

“Hi, Ms. Midoriya?”

 

“That’s me, yes. Is something wrong? Do you need to speak to Izuku?” He’s available to speak?

 

“Yes, please. It’s regarding school work.” Shouta hears Ms. Midoriya calling her son.

 

“Hey, Aizawa. I didn’t think you’d be awake right now. Are you okay?” That’s Midoriya’s voice.

 

What the fuck.

 


 

 

Shouto sits in his room, listening to music playing from his speakers. He initially turned it on to mask the noise of his father’s screaming, and his own laughter upon seeing the viral video of his father picking at himself. It really does cheer Shouto up after the day he’s had. Quiet knocking on his window makes his night.

 

“Soba delivery service.” Izu sings as the window opens.

 

“I’m happy to see you.” Shouto admits, taking the food when it’s handed to him.

 

“I thought I’d come and see how you’re feeling. “ The two have become good friends in the past few weeks, but Shouto rarely ever gets to hear about his vigilante work. Izu’s been adamant about keeping him out of it.  

 

“I’m doing fine. Did you leak that video of my father just to get him out of the house?” Izu nods. “Thank you. He wanted to train me, even after a villain attack. Now he’s off to see some officials about his public image or something. I don’t really care enough to ask.” The two sit on Shouto’s futon, ready to chat and eat for while.

 

“You can dig in. I got some snacks for some snaccs.” What? Shouto blinks at Izu, who starts howling with laughter.

 

“What does that mean?”

 

“I called you a snacc.”

 

“Yes, but what does that mean?” I’m missing something, aren’t I?

 

“Uh, never mind.” For whatever reason, Izu has decided against telling Shouto what that phrase means. “Something on your mind?” Actually, there has been something he’s wondering about.

 

“One of the villains had a quirk that disintegrated whatever he touched with all five fingers.” He tensed a bit. “What do you think would happen if he used it on you?” Izu has explained the basics of his quirk to Shouto before, and he keeps coming up with scenarios.

 

“It depends on who’s faster. I’d have to regenerate faster than he can tear me apart if I wanted to escape. I’d feel all of it, though.” Shouto’s reminded of the way his classmate screamed in pain. It echoed through the facility, chilling him more than his own ice could. Izu has his mask pulled up just above his lips, so he can eat.

 

“I see. Is there any training you want to do involving your quirk? In a situation like that?”

 

“Not in that situation, but the opposite. I want to be able to turn off my quirk, or at least control the rate at which I heal. Say someone actually arrested me, or saw me hurt without my mask on. If I healed in front of them, my life is pretty much over.” I don’t think that’s true, other people have similar quirks.

 

“I’m sure you wouldn’t be tried as an adult, Izu.”

 

“You don’t know what I’ve done.” There’s something sad in the voice. “I’ve tried my best to do good, but the ways I get my results aren’t the best.” Shouto mentally stores the comment away for later. Izu snickers a bit, confusing Shouto. “Are you staring at my lips for a reason?” Oh, I have been staring.

 

“I want your face.” Wait, “I mean I want to see your face!” Shouto loses his composure a moment at his horrendous slip up. Izu’s rolling, laughing his heart out. Shouto almost mistakes the sound for the music playing in the background.

 

“Smooth, Todoroki, smooth.” That’s sarcasm. Fine, I’ll show him I can be smooth without the need for that tone.

 

“Please, Todoroki is my father. Call me Shouto.” At that, Izu freezes.

 

“Oh my god. My heart can’t thank this!” He’s still giggling. I want to hear that sound more often. “Anyways. I know you want to see what’s under the mask, but I can’t reveal my identity to anyone.” He knows this, yet still feels strangely saddened by it.

 

“Does Catspiracy know who you are?” Izu nods, and Shouto feels an emotion he’s never felt before. It’s not anger or sadness, it’s like his heart is shouting ‘it’s not fair’ from the rooftops. “He knows your identity because you’re dating, right?” In shock, Izu inhales the soba and promptly chokes on it.

 

“We’re not dating!” He yells after his breath returns to him. Oh. His heart skips a beat.

 

“I’m glad.” At the admission, Izu drops his chopsticks and doesn’t speak.

 

“...Oh.” The only sound in the room are the speakers playing some music.

 

“Someone tell me how I got here-” The voice on the station sings. Shouto notices Izu nervously humming along. I’ll have to listen to this song later. He’s fallen into a habit of listening to the songs that he hears Izu absentmindedly singing. When Izu goes back to eating, he looks at the song, ‘Is (feat. POP ETC)’ from the  Zankyou No Terror soundtrack’. Shouto hits the button that stores the song into his playlist titled “Izu’s music.”

 

After the confused silence from both parties, they turn on a movie. The two like to watch a new one every time they meet up. The last one was too weird for them both, and they had to change it. The slogan about Ultraviolence made them think of UA’s motto. As it turns out, it’s further from heroics as can be. Izu picks the movie tonight, settling in next to Shouto on the futon.

 

“Lilo and Stitch? Another American movie?” Izu nods.

 

“You’ll like this, I promise.” When the movie start, Shouto finds himself captivated by the themes of what it means to really be a family. It’s not about genetics or DNA at all. This one focuses more on being able to decide for yourself what family is. It makes Shouto smiles a bit as he watches.

 

Towards the end of the movie, Shouto feels a weight drop on him. He looks down, seeing Izu with his arm wrapped around his waist, face against his stomach.

 

“Izu?” Shouto quietly calls. He’s asleep. He hears the soothing sound of Izu’s steady breathing. Izu never pulled his mask back over his mouth when he finished eating. Shouto so desperately wants to pull the mask off and see the face of his first friend, his savior. He reaches down, gently grabbing the mask.

 

He pulls it back over his lips, fully covering Izu’s face again. He’ll show me when he’s ready. I trust him.

 

Sweet dreams, Izu.

Chapter Text

Izuku wakes up feeling warm. He moves to get up, but the feeling of air on his neck makes him freeze. It takes all of three seconds to realize that he fell asleep on Todoroki’s futon,

 

And that he’s the little spoon.

 

Gently, he tries to climb out of the boy’s arms without waking him, but it doesn’t work.

 

“Leaving?” Todoroki yawns, “It’s three am.” You don’t seem very fazed by this.

 

“Yeah, before your dad finds me.”

 

“He doesn’t come into my room. The most he’ll do is hit the door.” Izuku chuckles, messing up Todoroki’s hair a bit. Izuku’s already getting up, but Todoroki doesn’t move from his spot at all. What woke me up? The feeling of him breathing? He checks his phone, seeing several missed messages.

 

Catspiracy:

Aizawa called the house phone, I managed to pull off that I was your mother with the voice changer you got me.

 

Catspiracy:

Are you coming home tonight?

 

Catspiracy:

Please tell me you’re safe.

 

Catspiracy:

In your boyfriend’s arms, no doubt.

 

Next conversation it is.

 

Eraserhead:

What the fuck. You’ve done it. You’ve stumped me. Is it clones?

 

Oni:

No, not clones.

 

Eraserhead:

We need to talk soon.

 

Replying right away? Go to bed!

 

“What are you laughing at?” Todoroki yawns again.

 

“Texting Eraserhead, he’s being stupid as always.”  The boy’s eyes go wide a moment.

 

“He’s awake?”

 

“He’s been awake since 5 yesterday.”

 

“Aizawa’s a mess.” Is how this particular conversation ends. Izuku’s still exhausted, which is a new feeling for him. My quirk also keeps me from getting too tired, treating a lack of sleep as an injury of sorts. I’ve never felt this run down before. It dawns on him just how much he overused his quirk at USJ. Between that show of strength, and trying to avoid being the result of a Thanos snap, I could’ve overworked myself. That implies I actually have a limit? In all honesty, he doesn’t know what to do with this information. I'm the main character, I thought I was supposed to be OP or some shit?!

 

“I have to go.” Izuku moves to leave through the window, but Todoroki grabs his wrist.

 

“Stay safe.” Those two words cause his heart to melt. He can’t remember the last time so many people have cared about his well being, and he isn’t sure how to take it.

 

“I promise I will.” With that, Izuku leaves.

 

At his own apartment, he rolls his eyes at the fact that the lights are still on.

 

“Shinsou, you need sleep.” Izuku calls.

 

“I’ll sleep when I’m dead.” I can help with that, you sassy child. He yanks off his mask, forgetting how nice it feels to actually see and breathe normally. Although, Izuku’s not fond of how it makes his ears cold when he removes it.

 

“You said Aizawa called?” It looks like Shinsou hasn’t moved from that spot since he’s left.

 

“Yeah. I managed to impersonate both you and your fake mother.”

 

“Now, now. She’s not fake, just dead.” Shinsou rolls his eyes.

 

“Anyways. He heard your voice and said we have tomorrow off from school, but we already knew that. It sounded like he was so thrown off he forgot what to say.” He gives a dry chuckle.

 

“Wish I could’ve heard it. I told him that I don’t have parents, so he probably wanted to check.” The boy narrows his eyes at Izuku.

 

“Why did you tell him you’re an orphan…?” Realization dawns on Shinsou, “You either want to get caught, or are dropping hints that get him nowhere just to frustrate him.”

 

“Both.”

 

“Why?” The laptop in front of Shinsou is partially closed, giving Izuku full attention. I should be honest with him.

 

“I’m tired of living like this. I want my revenge, and I want to save people. I want things to be okay, but I’m so tired.” Izuku doesn’t know why Shinsou’s out of his seat, rushing towards him. The taller boy pulls Izuku into a tight hug, holding his weight entirely. Izuku didn’t realize he was crying until a sob shakes his body, calming when Shinsou rubs his back.

 

“I knew you were close to breaking. I think what you went through today jump started it. It’s okay.” He’s right. Since USJ I’ve been fucked up.

 

“I was so scared of losing you guys.”

 

“You didn’t. I’m here. You saved my life. Izuku, you’re my hero.” Did he just call me Izuku? This fluff is going to kill me. “I have some news.” Uh oh. He said that in a ‘you might want to sit down for this’ kind of voice. They get moved to the couch in the living room, sitting.

 

“You found him, didn’t you?” Izuku asks. This is the only thing I’d have to sit down for.

 

“Yeah,” he breathes, nervously rubbing the back of his neck. “72 villains attacked USJ. Among those named, Hisashi Midoriya had one of the most extensive records.” All tears stop, Izuku feels emptier than he thought he would have. It sounds like he memorized the file he read it from.

 

“Where are they keeping him?”

 

“They won’t name places this early on. I got it straight from the station's database. Give me a few days.” I can work with this. Stay calm, don’t do anything rash with your dumb monkey brain, Izuku.

 

“Okay.” Shinsou snaps his eyes to Izuku with an odd look. “What?”

 

“Just OKAY?” He dramatically throws himself back against the couch. “That’s all you have  to say to finding out your father is still alive and ripe for an ass kicking?”

 

“Right now. Yes. I am trying really hard to stay calm and think rationally.”

 

“Oh, that makes more sense.”

 

“Also because I’m dead inside!” They laugh a bit, changing the subject onto something lighter.

 


 

 

Everyone was given a day off in addition to the weekend to recover both mentally and physically from USJ. Which each passing day, Shouta just becomes more annoyed. The doctors know he’s awake and aware enough to speak and think as normal, but won’t let him leave. Worst of all, staying here will ruin his perfect attendance as a teacher. That simply won’t do.

 

Bored, he scrolls through news on his phone. The main story isn’t even about a hero. It’s Oni.

 

Apparently, Oni and Catspiracy went grocery shopping in their masks, with T-shirts saying their respective names on it. The media thought they were the same person, seeing as they’ve never been in a video together. Now, all of the news is about this ‘anti-media, anti-endeavor couple.’

 

Eraserhead:

What is wrong with you?

 

Oni:

Loaded question. Generally speaking?

 

I hate him.

 

Eraserhead:

Got enough media attention yet? I can’t image you’re a fan of that attention.

 

Oni:

It’s gross, but when the time comes, they’ll plaster my story everywhere.

 

Eraserhead:

If you want to take Endeavor down, do you know how his loss will affect the country? The government will be disrupted at the loss of a powerful hero.

 

Oni:

If the country can’t handle the loss of that dumpster monster, then it deserves to fall to begin with. Besides, Hawks is much better and more capable.

 

Shouta feels restless. He wants to be in homeroom this morning to assure his students that he’s okay, that it’s all going to work out. Without him there, it seems more like an empty promise. He hates what he’s about to do.

 

Eraserhead:

Disable the cameras. I have a class to teach.

 

There’s a moment where Shouta doesn’t get a response.

 

Oni:

You’re good to go.

 

He has enough time to sneak out, get dressed, and make it to UA before school starts. He sits on his couch in the corner of the teacher’s lounge, glaring through his bandages at anyone who looks at him.

 

“Young Aizawa.” All Might greets, sitting down on the other end of the couch. “I know you’re still angry with me, but I need to ask something.”

 

“Shoot.” He deadpans.

 

“Did you tell Midoriya about my time limit?” What? Does that little brat know?

 

“No? Why. Tell me what happened.” If I didn’t know any better, I’d say he was debating whether or not to actually tell me.

 

“At USJ, I defeated the Nomu, but my time was up. I was forced to transform into this.” He vaguely gestures at his skinnier appearance. “Midoriya was gravely injured, and our eyes met. He wasn’t surprised. He recognized me right away, turned around, and screamed. When asked by Tsukauchi, he admitted he did it because he had to save me.”

 

“Save you, a man that utterly traumatized him.” Shouta repeats, All Might sadly nods.

 

“With your permission, I’d like to speak to him.” Aaaaaand you’ve lost me.

 

“No. I’ll thank him for you, and I’ll ask how he knew. There’s no need for you to speak to him, he’s got enough on his plate as is.”

 

“But-”

 

“No buts. I don’t need you strolling up and asking that thing to be your successor. No. I’m not paid enough to deal with that shit.”

 

“I wasn’t going to offer anything to him yet, Aizawa.”

 

“Yet.”

 

“Yet.” All Might repeats, sounding a bit more distant than before.

 

“I’m serious. Stay away from the kid. He’s a time bomb, and he’s ready to take down anyone who’s near when he detonates.” For a moment, All Might’s eyes widen, before his face settle into a soft smile.

 

“He does have an explosive personality, doesn’t he?” Jesus, All Might. I mean he’s going snap one day and probably kill someone, not that he’s a spunky teenager.

 

No. He’s a vigilante and I’m not going to let you speak to my kid. Are we clear?” Shouta seethes, glaring more when All Might starts laughing.

 

“I’ll worry about the vigilante comment later. You called him your kid, Young Aizawa.” I did not. With that, Aizawa leaves for his class. For once, he’s bit earlier. The only students in there are Midoriya and Shinsou. Iida’s started a habit of studying in the library before school rather than being first and sitting idle for an hour. I refuse to look at those two brats.

 

Shouta realizes he has to look into Izuku Midoriya not being his real name, but it’s become a matter of how to approach the topic.

 

“I’m dying. I can’t do this.” Midoriya groans into his desk, getting a chuckle from Shinsou.

 

“I’ve been trying to tell you. It’s about time you felt some human emotion, you freak.” Do I even want to know?

 

“Help me!”

 

“I can’t. Rather, I just don’t want to.”

 

“Aizawa, tell Toshi to stop bullying me.” Let me have peace, dammit.

 

“Shinsou, don’t bully Midoriya if it’s not worth it.”

 

“Oh it is. Someone has a crush on him and he’s losing his mind over it.”

 

“I don’t know feelings?!” Midoriya whines, covering his face. Embarrassing the brat? I can get behind this noble cause.

 

“So, what’s the issue here? You don’t know a lot of things, Midoriya, it hasn’t stopped you from making a fool of yourself before.”

 

“Analysis! It’s not the same as feelings. I don’t know morals. ” He’s got a point there. “Toshi, Aizawa, please. Tell me the first thing that comes to mind for you guys!”

 

“I’m Ace.” Shouta and Shinsou say simultaneously, causing Midoriya to collapse on the floor in fetal position, screaming into his elbow. Shouta can’t help but chuckle, seeing this vigilante finally suffering.

 

All Might stands in the hallway, pleading eyes on Shouta. Fine. Shouta nods, shooing All Might away.

 

“Midoriya, I’m being morally obligated to speak with you on All Might’s behalf. C’mon.” He doesn’t wait for Midoriya, he just walks out into the hallway. Shouta almost considers turning to check if the boy follows.

 

“He’s not gonna talk to me himself?” Midoriya asks. He can move silently, that’s not good.

 

“He’s scared too.”

 

“I suppose I have you to thank for that?” In the private office, they sit down.

 

“All Might is curious as to how you know about his time limit.”

 

“Ah, that. I’ve seen him transform on some.. Uh…” He pauses, looking for the right words. “I’ve seen him transform before.” Midoriya probably saw from cameras.

 

“You didn’t tell anyone? Not even Shinsou?” The boy shakes his head. “Why not?”

 

“I have a grudge, sure, but that secret is beyond me and my own feelings. Say I was a vigilante,” Really? ‘Say’? It’s still a hypothetical? “I’d be pretty annoyed if someone revealed who I was as a civilian. For the Symbol of Peace, that could literally be his downfall.”

 

“What do you say that?”

 

“As mad as I am at him, I still find it impressive that he carries the world on his back. All it takes is the wrong person finding out a weakness, and the world begins to crumble.” Shouta stares a moment, distantly thankful that this kid didn’t turn out to be a villain.

 

“That was surprisingly wise of you, kid.” Shouta admits, earning a glare from Midoriya. “So, going on the assumption that you’re not a vigilante, give me some more wisdom regarding your view on it.” Midoriya hums.

 

“If I were a vigilante, I’d have a certain mentality. No matter that I do, people will hate me. It just becomes a matter of how many.” I wish I had a stupid kid to catch. Not this evil genius bullshit.


 

 

For the past week, the students have been training for the upcoming Sports Festival. Many of the kids show improvement, others not so much. Not that he’s showing favoritism, but Shouta can tell which of his students will advance to the final rounds. Bakugou will go far if he doesn’t get disqualified for his personality. Todoroki will, but for whatever reason, he doesn’t use his fire. Iida and Uraraka have potential, if they work on their combat a bit more, rather than relying on quirks. Shinsou could probably win if he can manage to avoid people finding out what his quirk is. Lastly, as much as he wishes it weren’t true…

 

Midoriya might actually win. I’m not playing favorites, he just has the most experience when it comes to being on the field. He’s not my favorite in the slightest, I can’t stand the pest.

 

Shouta has felt someone blowing up his phone for the past hour, now that he has free time, he checks it.

 

Seven missed calls from Detective Tsukauchi. Shouta calls back.

 

“Sorry, I have a class right now.” He greets. “Something wrong?”

 

“You know your problem kid? Izuku Midoriya?” There’s a headache coming on already. He never showed up for class. It’s his first mark on his record.

 

“He’s not here.” Shouta hears a distressed sigh. “Let me ask if his whereabouts are known.”

 

“Shinsou, any idea where Midoriya is?” Shinsou shakes his head, a concerned look his face. “Classmates don’t know where he is.” The class has noticed Shouta asking, eyes on him. No one speaks up. When he meets Shinsou’s eyes again, the boy mouths.

 

“Can I go to the bathroom please?” Ugh, I thought it’d be useful information. Shouta nods.

 

“God dammit. “ Tsukauchi hisses.

 

“What happened? Do you have him?” I’ve haven’t heard him that worried in a while.

 

One of the villains from USJ has been identified as Hisashi Midoriya.” Midoriya?

 

“Is that his father?”

 

“No. He’s the father of Izuku’s cousin, Mikumo.” I remember that name. The reason Bakugou and Midoriya got into a fight on the first day of class. The thought of the kid’s uncle being a villain doesn’t sit well with him.

 

“Did the name get put in a publicly accessible file?”

 

“No. It was kept quiet in case Oni made a move, only in our systems. It was going well until the villain’s name was plastered all over police scanners this morning.”

 

“Why?” I know the answer. Please let it be false.

 

“He escaped.” That stupid kid tried so fucking hard to keep us from getting evidence against him, but at the mention of his uncle pulls a stunt like this?  “Did you catch Oni? You caught him. Please give me something to work with.” In the corner of the now silent room, Shouta sees Todoroki go stiff, face paling a bit.

 

“We did. We got a good dose of quirk suppressants in him, too.” What if his quirk treats the drug as an illness and cures himself of it before it kicks in?  “Don’t worry, the dosage was high enough to kick in almost immediately.”

 

“If you caught him, why do you sound so sad?” An idea dawns on Shouta. “ Hold on, let me call the boy’s mother and see if she knows what he’s up to.” He quickly hangs up, dialing Ms. Midoriya.

 

“H-Hello! I’m afraid I can’t talk much right now. Little Zuku is sick.” The woman’s voice sounds as anxious as ever. “He’s running such a high fever!”

 

“Is he awake?”

 

“Er, yes, but I don’t think you should talk to him right now. Do you wish to?”

 

“Just for a moment, ma’am.” There’s a moment of silence, then the sound of a door being knocked on.

 

“Zuku, it’s your teacher, he wants to speak with you.”

 

“Okay, just a moment, Mom.” Shouta feels his blood run still. That’s his voice. What am I missing?

 

“You know what? I’ll speak with him when he comes back. Thanks.” He hangs up and promptly calls Tsukauchi back. “You said you caught him?”

 

“We did. Ah, fuck. Shouta watches Shinsou return to his seat from the bathroom, wondering if he’d have better luck tracking the boy down.

 

“You’re telling me he escaped with quirk suppressants in his system.” Tsukauchi hums in response.

 

“He got cuffed and dragged to the car, and managed to knock one officer out. When he was being put into the car, the remaining officer tried taking off his mask to finally reveal his identity. The officer has a broken nose from Oni biting it.” Animalistic tendencies when desperate, noted. “ They decided to wait until bringing him in to get his mask off.”

 

“He didn’t make it to the station, did he.”

 

“No. The footage from the cop car shows Oni blowing a kiss at the camera before escaping.”

 

“How did he escape?” Quirk suppressants are no joke, he should have been too drowsy to fight.

 

“He bit off a finger.” Shouta tenses at the thought, knowing he wouldn’t have healed. “The officer didn’t notice. He chewed the finger in such a way that he whittled some of the bone into a lockpick.” That’s disgusting. “He quietly took off the cuffs.”

 

“I have a feeling this gets worse.”

 

“He managed to unscrew the barrier off the seat and got to the driving officer, causing them to forcibly stop the car, on the bridge by Nighteye’s office. He jumped over the bridge and my officer shot at him. We lost sight once he hit the water.” What he’s saying is ‘we don’t know if we have a dead child on our hands.’

 

“How long has it been since Oni escaped?”

 

“Little over an hour ago. He’s yet to be seen by officers, we only saw red in the water and nothing else.” Shit. I have to go, don’t I?  With quirk suppressants, an injury, and possible bullet wounds, there's no way he can manage to stay above water long enough. He's going to drown if he hasn't made it out yet. If he hasn't already drowned, to be more acurate. 

 

He texts Hizashi to take over for him and leaves school without a single word to his students.

Chapter Text

Izuku wakes up, coughing water out of his lungs. That’s not where that goes. The sudden realization that he’s both upside down and moving makes him incredibly nauseous.

 

“Stop moving.” A voice demands. He’s never heard it before. I can’t trust them. I have to get away. The man has Izuku slung over his shoulder like a sack of potatoes, very soggy ones at that. Izuku absolutely would get away, if he were able to move. I’m drugged up and beyond tired. I don’t know what his quirk is, I wouldn’t get very far in this condition. Izuku may lack all self-preservation, but he’s no idiot.

 

“Are you a cop?” The first question should have been to ask if he’s a villain, but he has bigger things to worry about. The man moves inside of a warehouse, connected to an alleyway.

 

“If you don’t want them to see your face, cover it.” He instructs. Holy shit, my mask! Where is it?! He does as told. Once in a secure room, the man sets Izuku down on a bed. His head is pounding, threatening to beat right out of his skull.

 

“Did you save me?” In the poor lighting, he gets a look at the person. They have black spikey hair, reminiscent of Kacchan, and they’re covered in large sections of charred flesh. The only thing holding him together are surgical staples. Although, some are clearly piercings.

 

Aesthetic.

 

“I didn’t save you, so much as I just dragged your body here.” The man tosses Izuku’s mask to him. “I had to take it off, or else you would have probably choked on the water again.” He’s already seen my face, I don’t really feel like putting it back on. Izuku pulls his phone out, seeing if it’s fine. Fuck.

 

It most certainly is not fine. It works, yeah, but for how long? Blue, pink, and yellow hues blink on and off of the display.

 

The man leaves, coming back a few minutes later with a first aid kit, some orange juice, and cookies.

 

“Here. You can do the first aid yourself if you know how.” If I know how? Juice? Cookies? You’re not my fucking babysitter. But I’ll be damned if these aren’t some bombass cookies.

 

“Thanks,...”

 

“I’m going by Dabi right now.” Vague.

 

“Call me-”

 

“Oni. I know who you are. If you were anyone else I’d probably would have let you drown.”

 

“Gee, thanks.” Wait a second. “Are you a villain?”

 

“I prefer the term anti-hero, but sure.”

 

“That’s not what an antihero is. I’m more of an antihero than anyone in this story.”

 

“The hell’re you talking about?” Never mind! “Call me what you want to, I don’t care.” Ooo edgy hair flip.

 

“You’re saying you saved me because I’m Oni?”

 

“Yeah, you’re the one behind the suspicion surrounding Endeavor right now. I can get behind that cause.” Dabi stares at Izuku a moment. “Why are you doing this anyways?”

 

“He’s a shitbag! A child abuser! I can go on for days!”

 

“How’d you find out about his abuse?” He doesn’t seem shocked at all.

 

“Well he’s always been a dick to me, then he set me on fire, then I befriended his son and everything went from there. I have access to all the camera’s in his house.” Izuku can’t help the devilish smirk on his face as he thinks about ruining Endeavor’s life.

 

“I also saved you because you’re a kid. Boy was I shocked to find that out.” Izuku doesn’t answer, “Don’t you have a family?”

 

“Don’t you?” The man freezes. “My family was ruined by my fuckface of a father, who’s on the loose as we speak.”

 

“Sounds like we got some things in common.” Dabi takes a seat on the bed beside Izuku, studying the boy’s face. “Your scar reminds me of my little brother, you’re probably around his age too.” Well then, I was right about something.

 

“Shouto’s doing well.” Dabi’s eyes widen at the boy, before settling into a ghost of a smile. He didn't expect me to know Todoroki, huh?

 

“What was it?”

 

“Your hatred of Endeavor, mentioning the scar, not seeming shocked. Also, you have an overall ‘daddy issues’ vibe going on.” Dabi hums, chuckling a bit. “What time is it?”

 

“Almost noon, why?” Izuku jumps to his feet, only to fall back down onto the bed in dizziness.

 

“I’m late for school!” Stupid! I could’ve had him!

 

“What school? Is it nearby?” Izuku groans into his hands, tired.

 

“I’d rather not say. It’s uh, prestigious school.”

 

“Oh my god, you’re totally training to be a hero!” Dabi laughs, and Izuku feels oddly mesmorized at the way his expression pulls at the staples.

 

“Shut it. It’s easier to save lives without people trying to end mine.” There’s a long stretch of silence between them. “If I were to bring your case forward like I planned on….. Would you testify?” I should ask if he'd stop me in general. 

 

“I can’t say I won’t try and kill him if I see him.”

 

“That’s not what I’m asking.”

 

“Yeah, I’d probably testify.” Good. Something good will come out of this. I just have to find a way to explain this to Todoroki. I can get Aizawa to cancel whatever quirk this guy has if the court needs it. Izuku gets up, ready to stumble out and find his way home. “Just so you know, kid. If you’re in a hero school, the next time we meet it may be on opposite sides.”

 

“What does that mean?” Is there going to be another attack?

 

“It doesn’t mean anything yet. It might one day. I saved you because Stain doesn’t believe in killing innocent children. A day may come where he decides he believe in it, or believes that you no longer innocent.” He's a Stain Follower? Kinda gross, dude.

 

“Uh.”

 

“I think you’d be spared. He only lets true heroes live.” How the fuck did we start talking about Stain? God, don’t tell me this is an upcoming arc in my life.

 

“Thanks?” Izuku puts his mask back on, stumbling out of the room Dabi brought him to. All eyes settle on him, recognizing who he is. No one makes a move. They must be under Dabi’s control. On the way out of the door, he accidentally bumps into someone who’s entering. “Sorry,-” He meets the eyes to apologize.

 

“Watch where you're going.” Shigaraki hisses, but keeps moving. Like he has important business to attend to. Izuku forces himself to leave, knowing he’d be killed if he stayed to spy. Fucking Quirk suppressants.

 

On his own, Izuku makes it to the front steps of his destination, collapsing.


 

 

Shouta races to the place Oni was last seen. If the stupid brat allowed GPS tracking, he might’ve been able to be found already. At the scene, he speaks to the officers involved.

 

“He escaped and jumped into the water. What happened after that?” He asks the officers, not hiding his distress.

 

“We shot at him, and we never saw him resurface.” The officer doesn’t seem too bothered by the situation, which infuriates Shouta.

 

“Did you guys have a search team check the water?” They nod.

 

“Nothing was found. We even got some water-breathers to check the floor of the river. Nothing was found.” Oni either escaped, or someone took him. Shouta hopes that the former is the case. Escaping would mean he’s healthy enough to move on his own. Who’s to say someone didn’t just drag out his body? 

 

“Did you shoot him? Can you confirm if he was hit?”

 

“He was. Grazed in the shoulder, shot in the abdomen.” Shit. Okay, let's switch gears a moment.

 

“Does anyone have a lead on Hisashi Midoriya?” They both stare at Shouta a second, “What, do you not know that these two are connected?” Slowly, they shake their heads. Idiots. The kid is probably still pursuing him.

 

After concluding the borderline interrogation of the officers, Shouta looks at the scene himself. Under the bridge, there’s a small blood trail. Following it, he finds himself in an alley. The pattern of dropping blood, rather than smears, suggests that someone carried him. The splatter of each blood drop is a bit further from the epicenter than normal. Higher downward acceleration of the blood. Oni wasn’t carried bridal style, it looks like he was sack carried. Mostly likely from someone tall. The blood is almost brown in color, meaning it’s been a while since he’s been through the alley.

 

The trail leads Shouta to the side door of a warehouse. For a moment, he almost considers going in blind,

 

But that’s not rational.

 

There another trail of blood, going further down the alley. Oni was inside this building for an unknown amount of time, then walked out by himself. The blood splatter is closer than before, hinting that he was bleeding from a lower height. Shouta notices the new path is redder than before, appearing much more recent. A weight lifts that Shouta didn’t know was there. He’s alive.

 

The drops are bigger. His wound either opened up more, or he was stressed out by something. What happened in there?

 

Shouta follows the blood trail, slowly getting closer to wherever Oni went. Every few blocks, Shouta encounters someone being annoying, and has to take them out. There is no need to rob a store right now! Bigger fish! The man can’t seem to avoid finding villains on the way. If he was shot, those quirk suppressants might actually kill him. A part of Shouta hopes that he’ll bleed enough of the chemicals out, allowing his quirk to kick in before it’s too late.

 

His phone buzzes in his pocket. After fumbling it out, he quickly looks at the message.

 

They’re coordinates from Oni. When Shouta looks up address it leads to, he takes off running.

 

He went to my fucking house?!

 


 

 

Hitoshi goes most of the school day with his classmates’ eyes on him. Stare all you want, you’re not getting answers. In English class, he starts getting worried for his friend. Izuku’s never missed school, and has never gone this long without a status update during a mission. The sinking feeling in his gut tells him something’s gone wrong.

 

Todoroki seems stressed out, compared to usual. Hitoshi knows Todoroki probably linked Izuku’s absence to Oni and Aizawa. Hell, most of the class probably put it together. Seeing as Aizawa never excused himself for the phone calls, it’s obvious.

 

He silently listens on as classmates discuss what’s going on.

 

“Poor Midoriya. Oni probably took him to get to Aizawa!” Uraraka speaks up. The conspiracy theorist in Hitoshi cringes. What kind of broke theory is that? C'mon, go the whole mile!

 

“Wasn’t Midoriya like, Aizawa’s assistant or something?” Kaminari asks, “If I were a vigilante, I’d probably do the same thing.”

 

“That means you’d have to actually be smart.” Jirou counters, pointing at him with an earphone jack. Is it not obvious that Izuku is Oni?

 

“Bakugou, you were friends with Midoriya right?” Ojiro asks. Bakugou stiffens at the accusation, slowly turning.

 

“The fuck did you just say to me? You saw me and Shit-for-Brains the first day of class and you wonder if we were friends? There’s no way in hell I’d befriend that fucking cabbage.” He huffs, glaring at Kirishima when he comes over to calm him. “Besides, he’s made it real clear to me that he’s not the person I think he is. The Shit’s trying to pull a fast one on me.”

 

“Not the person you think he is?”

 

“Fuck off, I owe you skanks no kind of explanation!”

 

“Now, now, little listeners. We need to get back to the assignment before Aizawa gets back and attacks us.” Present Mic jokes. The class settles back into silence.

 

Hitoshi’s phone buzzes, showing a notification that someone is in their apartment.  After Hitoshi got into the habit of also getting in through the window, they rigged the door. If someone opens it from the outside, their phones get notification. He takes his laptop out, accessing the cameras they set up.

 

Is that Izuku’s dad? A man with curly black hair creeps into the apartment, looking over their things. The mans face doesn’t seem pleased at the realization that people live there. He grabs one of the backpacks sitting by the door and dumps the contents on the floor. The backpack gets filled up with food from their cabinets and fridges. Why would he come back to that apartment? To see if they lived? He would have known if they were pronounced dead.

 

“Shinsou, laptop has to be put away right now.” Mic starts, getting utterly ignored. “Shinsou?” Hitoshi’s eyes land on him, clearly wide with panic.

 

“Emergency, hold on.” He quickly signs to Mic, not taking his eyes off the screen again. His teacher doesn’t badger him again. Izuku would have gotten a notification too. He should text me soon. Soon is a major understatement, because his phone buzzes immediately, as if he spoke it into existence himself. It’s the coordinates to Izuku’s location. Without thinking, he bolts up into a standing position, startling his classmates. He never uses his location. It’s an emergency. He could be dying right now.

 

“Shinsou-”

 

“I have to go.” He manages, shoving his laptop into his bag and running to the door.

 

“I’m afraid I’m not allowed to let you leave.” Present Mic blocks the door, sad expression on his face.

 

“I know where Izuku is.” At that, he hears whispers behind him. He doesn’t care, he has to find his friend. “Please?”

 

“I can’t-” Panicked, Hitoshi takes a hold of Present Mic.

 

Let me go find my friend. ” Present Mic moves out of the way, letting him go. Hitoshi sprints as hard as his body allows, even then, he pushes a bit more. The sound of his classmates yelling after him do nothing to discourage him. He looks over his shoulder before turning the corner, seeing Present Mic staring back at him.

 

There’s a smile on Present Mic’s face, as if he’s proud of Shinsou for doing what he thinks is right.

 

Chapter Text

“Kid!” Izuku tries turning his head a bit, bracing himself as Aizawa practically throws himself beside him. “Hold on.” I’ve never heard him speak like this. He’s so…. Awake. Vaguely, he feels himself getting scooped up into Aizawa’s arms, being brought inside the house. His body is set down on something soft. A couch, his mind registers.

 

“Thanks, Dad.” He manages, before coughing roughly and grabbing his stomach in pain at the tensing of his muscles. “Ow.”

 

“Stop talking, stop moving, just stop.” Aizawa hisses, briefly leaving the room. It’s not a first aid kit he comes back with, it’s more of a first aid suitcase. The sound it makes smacking Aizawa’s living room table is kind of amusing, like someone smacking a countertop with a raw ham. “Take off the mask.” Huh? Take off the what now?

 

“Okay, fine. It all started when I was four, my moth-”

 

“Not your metaphorical mask, you pest. Take off your actual mask.” The sight of Aizawa pinching his nose in frustration is oddly comforting. “I’d do it myself, but I heard you broke an officer’s nose with your teeth.”

 

“I can’t, Eraser.” This mask comes off, and it’s all over. It doesn’t matter if you know who I am underneath. If you can confirm my identity, that’s it. I’m ready for it to end, just not now. Not yet. Before Izuku can speak up about the matter, he starts another coughing fit. He puts a hand to his mouth to cover it, only to get it snatched away from Aizawa.

 

“Look, you’re coughing up so much blood that it’s going through your mask.” Aizawa moves to take the mask off by force, getting his hand bitten. “ You little-”

 

“Leave it on.” Izuku hisses. “Let me die if you have to.”

 

“I can’t let a kid die.”

 

“Why not? What’s stopping you? Huh?! If I were just a few years older, would you?” I’m not taking off this mask. There’s more than just myself to worry about.

 

“I won’t let anyone die. That’s not what a hero does.”

 

“All Might let me die.”


 

 

Shouta stares at the kid, bleeding out all over his couch.

 

When Oni speaks, his heart fills with both rage, and a new kind of sorrow he’s yet to feel before.

 

“What do you mean All Might let you die?” Just by talking about it, he’s confirming that Midoriya and Oni are the same person, yet he can’t take off the mask.

 

“The first time I met All Might, it was the worst day of my life already. It was a hostage situation, and All Might’s presence scared the guy into slitting my throat.” I can imagine that. Overly tense muscles could contract the moment someone thinks something’s about to happen. “He gave this ‘sorry I was too late’ spiel to my corpse. Had I been anyone else, that’s a corpse. A dead child!” Oni gives a bitter laugh. He won’t let me do first aid.

 

“So I thought, that with the shit day it’s already been, why not ask him something. What no one has ever told me in my life.” Oni continues.

 

“What was it?” Shouta finds himself asking, slowly grabbing the supplies for first aid. Upon seeing Shouta’s movements, Oni strains to sit up and unzips the upper portion of his suit, getting enough of it off so Shouta can help. What the fuck is that? Shouta’s eyes linger on Oni’s scar.

 

“That I could be a hero.” I remember Shinsou telling me. I can’t remember the last time I was that angry at one person. I can’t remember the last time I’ve felt angry on someone’s behalf. Oni takes his phone out, typing away at something. He lays back down so Shouta can work. “There.” Oni abruptly takes off his mask.

 

“I thought you weren’t going to?” I knew it was Midoriya all along, but this still somehow feels weird. Too easy.

 

“I won’t let you get proof that I’m Oni. I disabled your cameras.” You did what? I wasn’t thinking about proof, you dumbass! I was thinking about saving your stupid life. Shouta explains he has to dig out the bullet, and do the stitches himself. Oni only nods.

 

“I’m guessing you used the same methods as you did finding my home address?”

 

“Yeah, sorry.” I’m digging through this kid’s guts to find a bullet, and he hasn’t even flinched. Now that I think about it… he glances at one of his hands, seeing Oni is missing most of a finger.

 

“Why’d you come here? Why not go to a hospital?”

 

“What kind of tomfoolery? I’m a wanted vigilante! Well, there are more important reasons I can’t go.” So you showed up at the steps of the person trying to arrest you? 

 

“Why not go to your own home?” A look of ‘oh shit that reminds me’ washes of Oni’s face, and he types away at his phone again.

 

“Turn your TV on.” Oni coughs. Curious, Shouta listens. Oni connects his phone to the TV, putting a video feed up. It’s camera footage from some sort of run-down building. Clearly the result of a fire and a lack of motivation to renovate. There’s a man in the house, raiding supplies. “God DAMMIT!” He yells, moving to get up. Shouta practically has to tackle the kid to keep him from moving.

 

“Who’s that? Where is that footage from?” That snarl on his face tells me exactly who it is.

 

“Hisashi.” Why’s the kid so angry? What’s so special about that place.

 

“It’s just some burned up apartment, what does it matter to you?” Oni locks eyes with Shouta, overcome with something close to grief.

 

“That’s my home.”

 

Oh. That…. Hurts. This kid was living in those conditions for how many years? Shouta watches the man dumping all of his groceries into bags to steal.

 

“I just got those.” Oni whines, still trying to get up.

 

“Stop moving!” Shouta yells. “I have to get the bullet out and the fact that you’re wiggling around like a god damned caterpillar doesn’t help!” Oni listens, mumbling stuff under his breath. “You said you lived there?” Oni nods. It does look like it’s fairly lived in for it’s condition. It seems like more than one person was living there. “I have to call your mom.” If his mom is in the picture, it doesn’t make sense. It’s not logical for them to live somewhere like that. Oni snorts.

 

“Go ahead.” I don’t like your tone. With one hand, Shouta dials her number and puts it on speaker so he can work.

 

“Hello?” His mom answers.

 

“Hi, Ms. Midoriya, I’m calling on behalf of your son? He’s fairly injured and I need you to pick him up.”

 

“Oh dear! I wonder how he escaped!” She sounds worried, should I tell her to come fast?

 

“We can discuss all this. I’ll send you my address, you should hurry.”

 

“Thank you, thank you! I really do think in that case,....” The woman trails, her voice changing into one much lower. It sounds slower, less energetic. “That you should open your front door right now.” As much as he hates to admit it, a chill goes down Shouta’s spine. He jumps to his feet and goes to his front door, not seeing the smug look on Oni’s face.

 

When he opens the door, he’s greeted by a person in a black shirt and jeans, wearing a purple cat mask.

 

“Catspiracy.” He greets, eyeing the small device in the person’s hands. They bring it up to the front of their mask, and with great annoyance, Shouta notices it’s modelled after a kazoo.

 

“Please, Call me Ms. Midoriya.” It’s the woman’s voice! How did they fit that technology into something so small?  Reluctantly, he lets the person inside his private home.

 

I’m going to have to move after this, aren’t I? When leading the boy to the living room, Shouta feels his blood freezing a bit.

 

“Izuku!” The person rushes over to his friend, who’s taken the liberty of cutting off their own hand. I didn’t hear it. He didn’t make a sound! The fact that this child has such a high pain tolerance at such a young age disturbs him.

 

“Hey, buddy.” Oni greets, grabbing his friend’s shoulder with the hand he has left.

 

“Your mask.”

 

“All cameras in here have been taken out. He can’t convict me just by saying ‘hey that kid’s Oni’.”

 

“Should I take mine off?” Why aren't they discussing his lack of a hand? Oni sighs, thinking it over.

 

“Listen up, Eraserhead.” His tone just got very serious. Aizawa nods in acknowledgment, seeing that Oni’s letting his stump of a hand bleed into a container from his utility belt. At least he has the decency not to bleed on my furniture. Hizashi would kill me.

 

“I’m, unfortunately, all ears.”

 

“He’s not an accomplice. He’s a victim. I threatened him into helping me with my crimes. He’s innocent.” Judging by Catspiracy’s reaction, I’d say Oni’s lying for his friend right now.

 

“Izuku-”

 

“He’s innocent.” Oni cuts a glare at his friend, “Take off the mask.” Catspiracy does as told. I’m both shocked and not at all shocked that it was Shinsou under the mask. This means that Shinsou left school.

 

“Shinsou, why aren’t you in school?” Shouta uses his teacher voice, feeling joy at the sight of his student cowering back a bit.

 

“My friend is bleeding out on your sofa, sir.” Fair point.

 

“I can feel my hair going grey.” Shouta mumbles, continuing the first aid. “Care to tell me why your hand is on my floor?”

 

“It’s called bloodletting. People would make cuts on themselves in order to bleed out their demons.” There’s a moment of silence, creating an awkward air. “Get it? Because the quirk suppressants are like tiny little demons?”

 


 

 

Izuku wakes up, vaguely remembering talking about demons in his blood before passing out. The sound of people quietly talking pull him out of his sleep fully. Rubbing at his eyes, he feels that his hands are back. On the living room table, he sees the bullet in a small metal tray, along with bloodied gauze. With little regard to how dizzy he’ll feel when he gets up, he hops to his feet.

 

I’m dizzy. Is this what regret feels like?

 

The talking stops, and eyes watch Izuku waddle towards the table.

 

“Sit down.” Aizawa instructs.

 

“In a sec, I need to take the stitching out.”

 

“Kid, you’re lucky you bled the suppressants out faster than you could bleed to death. You shouldn't even be up right now.” I know, the fever is well on its way. I have to do this before I’m stuck in bed. He grabs the surgical scissors, cutting the stitching out.

 

“How ya feeling, champ?” Izuku meets Present Mic’s soft expression with a smile. How did you get stuck with Aizawa?  Toshi sits at the table, patiently waiting for Izuku to come over to him.

 

“I’ll be back in peak condition in a day or so. It’s the fever that going to kick my ass.”

 

“You deserve it.” He hears Aizawa mumble.

 

“Go wash up and come eat dinner.” Izuku almost does a double take at Mic’s words. I intruded their home, disabled their cameras, and bled on their couch. They want me to stay for dinner?  Stunned, he simply lets Mic lead him to the bathroom, handing him some clothes to change into.

 

He looks in the mirror, seeing how red his face is from the oncoming fever. His hair is already plastered to his forehead, but that may just be from the river water. When he changes into the clothes, he scowls at how baggy they are on him. These are Aizawa’s. Mic’s probably too tall for me to fit into at all. Toshi laughs at his appearance the moment he shuffles into the kitchen.

 

“I feel like a trash bag.” Aizawa glares at him.

 

“You are a trash bag.” To that, he sticks his tongue out.

 

“Don’t fight, you two. Go sit down and wait.” Mic ushers them out of the room and into the dining room. Izuku sits between Shinsou and Aizawa, waiting for Mic to come back with the food.

 

“Toshi, he took our groceries.” Izuku complains to his friend, who looks equally upset about it.

 

“I know. We literally just got them.” It looks like Toshi is mentally recalling what he took. “He didn’t touch the freezer, so the ice cream is still there.”

 

“It’s chocolate! You’re the only who eats that shit!” Toshi rolls his eyes, “He took my kettle corn. My lifeline. I can’t go on in these conditions. You’ll have to kill me.” What kind of sicko is he?! Yeah, go ahead and kill my mother and I, but I have to travel all the way across town for the kettlecorn! It’s! Premium!

 

“I’ll get you more, calm down.” Sure Toshi, like it’s that easy. The feeling of a hand on his forehead startles him into grabbing the arm and twisting.

 

“Relax.” As soon as Aizawa speaks up, he lets go. “I’m trying to see if you’re running a fever yet.” He puts his hand back and takes Izuku’s temperature. “Hm, you’re a little warm.”

 

“Unlike my ice cold heart.”

 

“Shut up.”

 

They stop bickering when Mic starts bringing out the bowls of food and setting the table. The moment the sent of food hits his nose, Izuku remembers he hasn’t eaten at all that day.

 

“Izuku, you’re drooling.” Toshi teases, offering a napkin.

 

“Well excuse me, but I can’t remember the last time I had a meal.” He quips back, almost feeling bad at the concerned look the adults give him. Toshi and Izuku thank Present Mic for preparing dinner and make their plates. They eat in a somewhat comfortable silence until Toshi holds a napkin out to Izuku again. “Do I have food on my face?”

 

“You’re crying, kiddo.” Present Mic explains. Quickly, he wipes his tears away. “Do you not like the food? I can get ya something else, you know.” He’s so nice. Aizawa, what did you do to get someone so good?!

 

“No, no. It’s good. Katsudon’s actually my favorite food. I haven’t had it since…” Izuku feels his breath catch, sucking in a hiccup. Am I crying? Who said I could do that?  “I’m sorry.”

 

“Don’t be!” Mic defends, “Cry as much as you want, so long as you drink water to make up for it.” We love a selfcare guru. 

 

“You can tell them, Toshi. I need a moment.” Toshi nods, starting to explain.

 

“Besides the food I’ve made for him, he hasn’t had a home cooked meal since he was 12. Izuku once mentioned Katsudon was the last meal his mother made before they were separated.” Out the corner of his tear-filled eyes, he sees the adults tense. When he looks up, he sees Mic watching him with sympathy, and Aizawa looking on with a slightly colder look. He’s trying to reconstruct my life's story.

 

“This is very good, thank you.” My voice must’ve startled them. I did say I only needed a moment to shove down whatever emotion was trying to gurgle its way up.

 

“No need to thank us, kiddo. Shouta’s been trying to take you in for a while now, I guess it’ll just be a different kind of custody now!” At the joke, both Aizawa and Izuku chokes on their food. “Kidding! Jeez listeners, you’re too tense.” Izuku glares at Toshi when he startes snickering at them. Never mind. You’re my accomplice.

 

The phone in Izuku’s pocket startles him when it rings, halting the table's chatter.

 

“You can take the call, but you can’t leave the table.” Aizawa states firmly. You think I take vigilante orders or some shit? I’m not a delivery service! It’s Todoroki. “Put it on speaker.” Oh god. He gives one last glare at Aizawa, before doing as told.

 

“Hey Shouto.” He greets, not missing the collective eyebrow raise of everyone else in the room.

 

“Are you okay?” His words sound rushed, like he has to know right this second or else he’ll burst into flames. Well…. He might, actually.

 

“Yeah, I’m good. Healing from a few bad wounds, fever. Not anything I haven’t gone through before.”

 

“That doesn’t mean you should go through it again.” Woah, where did that tone come from?!

 

“I know, I’m sorry if I worried you.”

 

“I’m guessing you didn’t get caught? Please tell me you’re safe?” Izuku sighs, knowing he’ll have to lie.

 

“I made it away. I’m good.” Aizawa gives him an odd look.

 

“My classmates were talking about you kidnapping this kid named Midoriya?” They said what? You’re telling me that 18 kids were left to come up with theories and not one could guess we’re the same person? Come on, my act isn’t that good.

 

“That green haired freak? I didn’t see him today.” Shouto hums. Izuku only called him Shouto so there was a smaller chance of them knowing it’s Todoroki. It was worth a shot.

 

“I see.” He goes quiet a moment. “Are you coming over tonight?” Mic spits out his water at the question, and Aizawa stares at the phone with wide eyes.

 

“Not tonight, I’ll let you know when I can.”

 

“Oh, okay.” Don’t sound so sad!  “You’re in charge of picking the next movie, then.”

 

“You’re in charge of food, then.”

 

“Fine!” Shouto chuckles, pretending to sound mad.

 

“I gotta go,”

 

“Let me guess, going back to work? Don’t you ever rest?” No. I’ll sleep when I’m dead… Wait I can’t die…. Fuck. “The next time you come over I’m going to force you to stay put and relax, Izu.”

 

“I’m a workaholic! Say hi to your expired coupon of a father for me.” He snickers.

 

“I will not. Have a good night, Izu. Sweet dreams.” As usual, Todoroki hangs up first, not needing any more words from Izuku. It’s nice, seeing as Izuku hates goodbyes.

 

“Hey Shouto.” Toshi mimics in Izuku’s voice using the voice changer. Izuku quickly snatches away, mumbling about abuse of power.

 

“So, is seducing the man’s son part of your grand scheme?” Aizawa jabs, raising an eyebrow at Izuku’s increasingly red face.

 

“No! It just happened…” Hold it, “ I’m not seducing anyone!”

 

“It sounds like you were. I didn’t know the kid could actually emote.”

 

“Eraser, I have a fork and knife with your name on it if you don’t shut it.” I will end you, I swear.

 

“Not with my good silverware, kiddo. I can get you something else.” The table laughs a bit. Toshi waves a hand to Izuku, signaling he has to sign something.

 

“Tired Dad and Loud Dad.” Immediately after he signs it, Izuku and Present Mic starts laughing.

 

“What, what did you say?” Aizawa narrows his eyes.

 

“He didn’t say anything, dad.” Before he even finishes the word ‘dad’, Aizawa bitch slaps him with his scarf.

 

“So, Shinsou, would you like to call your parents and explain why you’re going home late?”

 

“Uh-”

 

“No. If I’m staying here, he is too.” I’m not staying alone, and I won’t let him go back to his shitty parents.

 

“Why’s that?” Aizawa deadpans, leaning towards Izuku in an attempt to intimidate him.

 

“He’s not going home. He lives with me. That was our apartment that was raided.”

 

“Izuku, it’s fine. I can go home.” Toshi, you know damn well what I’m thinking right now, and it’s not that.

 

“You’re not leaving.” Toshi looks like he doesn’t want to leave, but he doesn’t want to be a burden. “You’re not a burden to them, I promise.”

 

“He’s right. If you don’t feel safe at home, for whatever reason, you can stay the night.” Aizawa speaks up. While he says Toshi can stay the night, it feels more like ‘you’re staying and that’s final’.

 

“Okay, I’ll stay.” You don’t really sound like it took much convincing.

 

“We have two spare bedrooms, you two can decide which you want. For tonight, no hero or vigilante talk. I don’t have the energy to sort through all this shit today. I’ll call Tsukauchi first thing in the morning.”

 

“Yeah, if you called Tsuki now he’d probably be up all night.” Izuku agrees. “Hey, Eraser. If you live a life by rationality, why don’t you two just live in a one-bedroom apartment? Instead of a house like this?”

 

“Apartments don’t offer as much privacy, for one. Hizashi was in charge of almost all of the choices involving the house.” he pauses, “He probably predicted that we’d get stuck with a brat and his sidekick for the night.” Why am I the only brat? Look at Toshi, that’s a brat!

 

After dinner, they take turns showering, and Izuku and Toshi check the rooms. They’re fairly large for guest bedrooms, mostly blank. There’s dressers and beds in each, as well as a desk. The windows look like they’re hard to open. Izuku can’t help but mentally plan ways out of the building. Not that he’s going to escape! It’s a precautionary measure, if anything.

 

“Actually, kid. You’ll be in this room.” Huh? Why can’t I choose? Yeah, I wanted this room, but having you say I have no choice makes me want the other one!  “If you start to be yourself and try to weasel out of our house, this is closest to our bedroom. I won’t hesitate to tackle a tiny child.” Okay, why the fuck does everyone refer to me as tiny? Literally any other adjective would do.

 

“Fine.” Him and Toshi say their goodnights, already being ushered to their rooms with a declaration of ‘bedtime, there’s school in the morning!’.

 

The bed feels soft, much better than the one he has at his apartment. The way the air no longer smells like burnt wood and ash is both comforting and unnerving to the boy.

 

Slowly, he dreams.


 

 

Most of his dreams are vigilante related. When something occupies your thoughts constantly, it inevitably leaks into your dreams. It’s a sick distortion of reality that Izuku is all too familiar with. In this dream he finds himself fighting for his life. Be it cops, heroes, villains, or monsters. All he can process is that no one is his ally. Toshi and Shouto are nowhere to be seen. He’s alone.

 

It’s fine. I can shake these crusty fucks. I can win. Everything is going well, he is winning. That is, until something approaches him, hiding in his blind spots. He doesn’t see them at all. He only hears a crackly laughter, flooding all of his senses. Following that, he’s met with blinding pain. It's hot, searing, burning. Izuku’s falling apart at the seams.

 

Only then does he realize his limbs aren’t flesh. No, they’re stuffed. Izuku screams, watching his stuffing worm it’s way out of his stitching as he deflates into the hollow shell he is. He looks up, trying to find the source of the static and incessant scratching.

 

“I love my new toy.” Is all Izuku hears before he wakes up screaming and thrashing at his sheets.

Chapter Text

After the shitstorm of a day Shouta’s had, he wants nothing but to be able to sleep. He’s agreed to take the night off from his patrol, making Hizashi look happier than the day Shouta said ‘yes’. Restlessness plagues him, making him want to toss and turn, knowing his body doesn’t naturally fall asleep this time of night anymore. Taking in the scent of Hizashi’s passionfruit conditioner, he forces himself to remain still. Lying down without moving a muscle can force him into sleep.

 

It’s working, very slowly. Drowsiness starts coming on, he starts drifting into sleep.

 

Then he hears screaming.

 

His body’s moving before he can register who it is and where it’s coming from. Shouta knows Hizashi is following closely behind, and he sees Shinsou coming out of his room and darting towards Midoriya’s.

 

The kid's sitting against the headboard of the bed, screaming and scratching at his chest and abdomen, as if desperately trying to get something off of him. Shouta hears Hizashi trying to wake the boy up, attempting to capture the attention of Midoriya’s unseeing eyes.

 

When Shouta moves to restrain Midoriya’s arms, Shinsou steps in the way.

 

“Don’t. He won’t stop, he’ll just attack you instead. He’s on autopilot right now.” It sounds like this isn’t the first time it’s happened. “He did this a day or two after USJ.” The adults watch on as Shinsou tries to get a verbal response out of his friend. With his Brainwashing, he can force Midoriya to settle down. The kid’s still too asleep to notice he’s being spoken to.

 

“What did you do last time?” Shouta finds his voice.

 

“I had to cover him in blankets until he settled. Afterwards we went out and got him a weighted blanket for things like this.” Shinsou seems distressed, but is keeping calm for his friend’s sake. “He doesn’t listen to me, I can’t use my quirk when he’s like this.” To think that a student who hated even mentioning their quirk not long ago now feels sad that he can’t use it… You’ve come far, Shinsou. Shouta nods, using his capture weapon and binding Midoriya’s arms. He looks over his wounds, stomach sinking a bit.

 

“Why isn’t he healing from his injuries?”

 

“If he’s in shock, his quirk doesn’t work.” Oh great. Shouta leaves the room, going to one of the storage closets downstairs. He’s tried weighted blankets before, didn’t suit him. He’ll just give the thing to Midoriya, he needs it more. When back in the kid’s room, he hands the blanket to Shinsou, trusting him to do the work. Shouta watches on carefully, feeling that he might have to do this himself one day. Shinsou moves behind Midoriya, putting the blanket between the headboard and Midoriya, wrapping the boy up like a burrito and making him lay back down. Within seconds, his eyes close.

 

He’s out.

 

Shinsou and the two other adults move out to the hall, closing the door.

 

“Is this a common occurrence?” Shouta speaks up, feeling that Hizashi won’t be able to speak up a while. Shinsou hums as if he needs to think it over.

 

“After USJ, he also said the night after we fought Bakugou.” Huh? “He doesn’t know this, but I hear him waking up from nightmares every so often. He keeps his bedroom door cracked open. Izuku didn’t know he’s awful at hiding the sound of himself crying.” Shinsou pauses. “He offhandedly mention that he still dreams about-” He cut himself off. ”Anyways, it’s obvious he has a nightmare when he randomly takes cold showers.”

 

Who knew this problem child was   problem child?

 

“Thanks, I’ll have a chat with him tomorrow. Go back to bed.” Shinsou does as told.

 

“I know what you’re thinking, Shouta.” When he meets Hizashi’s eyes, he feels grateful. Shouta grabs one of his sleeping bags out their room, gets a goodnight kiss on the cheek, and goes into Midoriya’s room. He sets up a spot in the corner of the room on the floor, and lays down. He’ll be there to restrain the kid if he tries to hurt himself again.

 

Midoriya’s breathing sounds steady enough, maybe he’ll actually sleep the night? Shouta dozes off again. A few hours pass, and he finds himself waking back up. He hasn’t had a full nights sleep in years. Just hours of back to back naps. Might as well make sure that freak is still here. He sits up a bit, seeing Midoriya more clearly. He’s curled into a ball, knees halfway to his chest. With one hand, he holds his necklace, still soundly asleep. It’s a ring, isn’t it?

 


 

 

Izuku is both annoyed and not at all shocked to find Eraser tucked in the corner of his room when he wakes up. His breath catches a bit when he sees the weighted blanket  at the foot of the bed. Aw shit. With the slightest shift, he sees Aizawa’s eye open.

 

“I’m sorry.” I meant to say good morning, or hello, or even ‘what the hell are you doing?’, but no.

 

“Shut up. I’m not dealing with this shit yet. Go back to sleep.” Go back to sleep? What time is it?  Izuku reaches for his phone off the nightstand, yawning. He really needs to fix his phone soon, it doesn’t have much left in it. School started half an hour ago! Izuku bolts out of bed, rushing to get ready, only to be restrained by cloth. “Stop it.” Right, not actually at my apartment. This is weird. Wait, why wouldn’t we go to school? Oh god, this is the end for me, isn’t it?

 

“Is Toshi still here?” Aizawa gives a tired nod. If he’s here, I think I can deal with your bullshit a little longer. “What’s going to happen? Public execution? If so, it’s about damn time.”

 

“I thought I said to go back to bed? Did I not say that?” Izuku sits back down, holding his head a bit. I feel awful. Now that he’s focusing on how he feels right now, he notices the disgusting body aches, the coldness of the room. Izuku doesn’t miss Aizawa dumb smirk when he climbs back into the blankets. “That’s one reason why you’re staying home today. Did you forget you’re not actually invincible?”

 

“Aren’t I though?” If I wasn’t, that’d defeat half the purpose in making this story, don’t you think?

 

“No. You have a quirk. You’re still human. So don’t act like whatever demon possesses you when you’re Oni.” At that, Izuku snorts.

 

“Yeah, as if I need an extra kick to lose my marbles. I didn’t know you were funny, dad.” He laughs harder at the sight of Aizawa’s hair floating up.

 

“Don’t call me that. I’m not your father.” Aizawa’s glare only sharpens when Izuku rolls off the bed laughing. “We’re going to see Tsukauchi.”

 

“Oh! Dad number two!” Aizawa sighs.

 

“You’re probably going to wear more of my clothes, seeing as you came in costume.” Wait, no. I’m not turning myself in.

 

“I’m not giving up vigilante work.” Izuku states with a matter-of-factly tone. “I’m not going anywhere near a police station without my mask on.”

 

“You’re being outed as Oni whether you like or not.” Not if I can help it, you overgrown turnip. Izuku fakes a defeated sigh. “We’ll try to minimize consequence, seeing as your vigilante work is coming to an end.” Aizawa gets up, leaving the room and coming back with clean clothes. “Go wash up, you can use Hizashi’s hair stylers if you want. Travel toothbrushes are in the second drawer on the left.”

 

“Uh, thanks.” This is weird.

 

“You can get breakfast when you come down, it should be ready soon enough.” With that, Aizawa leaves the room.

 

Shinsou, I’m going to trust you to trust me. Izuku gets into the bathroom, smuggling his mask under his shirt. He can always make a new costume. I can break into Endeavor’s agency as much as I want. In the shower, he makes sure to scrub extra hard, working the feeling of guilt off of himself. Last night was awful, that dream was….

 

Shit, I forgot to mention I saw Shigaraki! When Izuku gets out the shower, he quickly finishes getting ready, and looks around for things to write with. Sorry, Mic, you might be the most mad at this one. Izuku finds eyeliner in one of the drawers and moves to write a note on the mirror.

 

“Eraser, buddy, dad. You should have thought a little harder about telling me my vigilante days are up. I told you, I have goals.

 

Speaking of which, yesterday my body was brought into a warehouse, and I bumped into Shigaraki on the way out. It looked like he had business.  I’ll still make sure my school work is taken care of, but for the next week...

 

I’m a ghost.” There, dramatic but not over the top. Now for the fun part. He looks around the window to the bathroom. Second floor, making some scratches and hurt ankles. On his Oni phone, he yet again disables their cameras. He ends up using a pair of hair scissors to unscrew enough of the window to get it open. You’re on the second floor, there is no need for this many locks on a fucking window! Well, I’m a reason for them… Huh.

 

He shimmies out the window, holding onto the ledge. The moment he drops to the ground, he stays crouched. He slips his mask back on and prepares to run. Their house is totally fenced in, with fucking barbed wire. Really Eraser? It’s a bit much. Izuku sneaks his way to the front of the house. When he gets ready to climb the main gate, he turns to see if the coast is still clear.

 

It very much so is not clear. Through the window of the living room, Izuku can see straight into the dining room. Straight into the eyes of Satan himself as Aizawa drops whatever he’s doing and starts sprinting to get to Izuku. He scrambles over the gate and runs as fast as he can.

 

This is like sneaking out of a one night stand, except instead of sex I was given parental guidance. Freaky.

 

He turns down the second road he finds, and takes as many random turns he can, hoping Aizawa isn’t warmed up enough to roof hop so early into the day. Thank god there’s a shopping street coming up. Izuku barrels down the road, weaving in between people, he knows Eraser is gaining. The hairs on the back of his neck stand up, and he feels eyes on him. Oh my god. He sees a small table on the sidewalk, to advertise a shops fresh groceries. He runs buy and snags two bags of flour and turns to face Eraser.

 

Before for the man can throw out his capture weapon, Izuku slams the flour onto the ground, blinding Aizawa with a cloud of it. By time to dust clears, he’s gone.


 

 

He stops in an alleyway, catching his breath. Something almost resembling a plan comes to him, it’s just a matter of if he can pull it off. If I stay hidden until the sports festival, then show up on field, they can’t take me out of it. It’d have to be explained publicly. UA can’t have it going public that Oni is one of their top first year hero students. Toshi is probably going to be stressed out, he’ll make sure to get in contact as soon as he can.

 

Thirsty, Izuku goes to a café, only getting his usual iced coffee. A sandwich sounds good. As much as he hates it, that Katsudon he ate yesterday can probably hold him over for a few days, so long as he has a snack here and there.

 

Izuku wonders around the streets a while, figuring out his first priority. New phone, new costume. I don’t even know if it’s safe to return to my apartment. Aizawa never got the address, and there’s no way Hisashi would be back again so soon. The first order of business is to fix his gear, so he moseys over to Endeavor’s agency. The dickwad must be on a patrol. The fact that the agency looks like it’s empty unnerves Izuku. What if he were a villain? What if he had some sort of horrible grudge against Endeavor!?

 

Wait.

 

He does!

 

Izuku can’t help smiling when he starts thinking of how he can redecorate the man’s office. Costume first, fun later. He goes to Endeavor’s computer, frowning at the sight of a password entry.

 

“Ho ho, what’s this I see?” It’s an option for ‘security questions’ in case he forgot his password. The question is ‘What does Endeavor hate most?’. While Izuku has an answer that’s probably right, he feels gross considering the pettiness of it all.

 

“AllMight” No space, because Endeavor looks like the kind of sicko who doesn’t know a space counts as a character on these computers. He clicks and clacks away at the keys, snooping through Endeavor’s files in the hopes of finding something juicy to leak. Nothing, he has less personality than a Wheat Thin. He managed to find an old phone in a storage closet in Endeavor’s main office. Two birds, one stone.  Izuku factory resets, and goes through the phone and reprograms it to be like the last. That process takes an hour. I don’t feel like making the costume here, I can take a duffle bag of materials. Izuku decides that in case he has to sleep on the street, he’ll steal some blankets.

 

Food is needed too, now that he thinks about it. I’m about to Robin Hood the fuck outta this place!  Izuku’s trying to keep track of his growing fever, feeling the chills getting a bit worse.

 

Now that he has a few duffle bags worth of supplies set aside, it’s time for the fun part. I really want to broadcast my painting process, but they’d know where to find me. While the idea of being tackled on camera sounds amusing, it’s not as much fun when he’s the one getting tackled.

 

I want more paint. Oooo streamers! Let’s make his office rainbow! Or green. Green can be both symbolic of me, and because it’s the opposite of Endeavor’s red. He thinks over the deeper meaning a moment. No, let’s go with rainbow. After rummaging around Endeavor’s supply closets, he finds paint. Not as much as he wanted, but enough to wreak havoc. Yet again he creates a borderline abstract portrait, only this time it’s himself. Izuku takes it upon himself to coat every inch of the room in paint. If he didn’t know any better, he’d say he’s actually having fun!

 

Until he hears a door close, that is.

 

He drops down into a low stance, holding two metal paint scrapers in his hands as weapons.

 

“Father?” I don’t know how I feel about this turn of events. “Hello?” He must have heard me moving before I heard him. The sound of footsteps approaching startles him. Izuku can’t decide whether or not to hide or to greet his friend. He’s torn.

 

The knocking at the door tells him time is up.

 

“I’m opening the door.” Todoroki opens the door, and blinks in surprise. Almost immediately after, he throws open the door and runs at Izuku, hugging him tightly. Woah, you know how to hug?  Izuku fails to notice how much he leans into the hug, reciprocating it. “I was so worried about you.” Todoroki mutters into Izuku’s ear. His heart hurts at the sound of how distressed his friend truly is.

 

“I’m sorry. I’m okay.” Todoroki doesn’t lessen his hold. “Todoroki, you’re gonna get paint on yourself!” Intrigued, Todoroki pulls away. He must have been too caught up in the sight of Izuku, he never saw the paint all over the office. Thank god he’s in workout clothes and not his uniform.

 

“Shouto.” Eh?

 

“Wha-”

 

“Yesterday you called me Shouto. I don’t see why you should switch back and forth between the two.” He’s so straightforward it throws me off sometimes. Izuku nods, not knowing what else to say. “What are you doing?” Shouto asks, moving to examine Izuku’s art.

 

“Ruining your father’s day.” He hums, moving to hand Shouto a paint brush. Shouto gives a small smile, accepting the brush and moving to paint a section of a blank wall. “Where is he, anyways?”

 

“Press conference in Hosu, he’ll be gone a while. That’s why I was confused as to who was in the building.” Shouto trails, “I was very happy to find you.” Here today? Or generally speaking?

 

“Oh.” Why the fuck can’t I speak? I am one eloquent fuck, so why won’t my jaw move?!

 

“Aizawa never showed up today, and neither did two of my classmates. I was starting to worry that it had to do with you, but here you are… painting genitalia on my father’s furniture.” Izuku snickers at the nonchalant comment. Shouto types something on his phone, putting it away and painting some more.

 

“I was thinking of getting industrial sized bags of glitter. There’s no bouncing back from that.”

 

“If you assaulted my father’s agency with glitter, it’d get on me, and I’d go the rest of my life being all sparkly.”

 

“Is that supposed to be a bad thing? I don’t see a downside here.” Shouto huffs a bit, pretending to ignore Izuku. When Izuku purposely moves into Shouto’s line of sight, the latter turns his head more. Two can play this game, you dork. Izuku keeps moving towards Shouto, and when he moves to finally confront Izuku, he swipes a line of pink paint across Shouto’s cheek. As a safety measure, Izuku darts back out of reach.

 

“Excuse me?” Shouto scoffs, getting ready to retaliate. I’m probably faster than you, you know. The foot Izuku tries to raise doesn’t follow his command. It’s frozen to the ground.

 

“That’s cheating!” The ice crawls up his legs, cementing him in place. Shouto comes over with a brush of blue paint and grabs Izuku’s arm, making zebra stripes all over his it. As if declaring himself the winner, he unfreezes Izuku and turns back.

 

Izuku moves to get the last laugh, but falls to the ground when he gets hit with a strong body ache. Shit. Shouto turns in time to see Izuku staggering forward.

 

“Did I hurt you?” He sounds so scared.

 

“No. I have a fever and I’m..” really, really cold. Holy shit I’m freezing. Is this hypothermia?

 

“Shivering. You’re shivering, Izu.” He finishes. Shouto looks conflicted over something. “Hold on a second.” He leaves the room for a few moments, giving Izuku time to wrap himself up inside one of the blankets he stole from Endeavor. When Shouto returns, his hands are full.

 

“What’s all this?”

 

“I ordered us food, and I grabbed a blanket because we covered the carpet in paint.” Izuku gets a watered down glare from Shouto when he tries to get up. He must want me to stay put. Shouto sets the blanket flat on the ground, then sets up the food.

 

“Thank you.” Izuku gets a soft smile in response.

 

“You mentioned a fever last night.” He speaks after they each take a few bites of food. Izuku’s mask is pulled up past his lips again, stopping right where his scar starts.

 

“I got shot a few times. I had quirk suppressants in while it happened so  it wasn’t much fun.”

 

“Why did… Why’d you get shot? Who shot you?” He says it like he’s about to go apeshit and hunt them down himself!

 

“The police tried to take me into custody. I wasn’t having it, so I escaped.” Shouto goes quiet, staring at the ground.

 

“You’re staying with me tonight.” What?

 

“What?”

 

“You clearly have no regard for your own life and don’t have any desire to take care of yourself. Well, I do.”

 

“You do what?” I’m lost.

 

“Want to take care of you.” There it is again! My mouth feels like it’s sewn shut! My stomach feels like static. My face feels hot as fuck, too. Shouto stares at Izuku’s lips again, before abruptly grabbing the sides of his face and pulling him closer. He lays the back of his hand on the exposed part of Izuku’s cheek. “You’re hot.” I know he’s talking about my temperature, but he’s really setting himself up here.

 

“No, you.”

 

“What?”

 

“What?”

Chapter Text

Shouto stares at his friend, trying to figure out what he just said. Why am I hot if you’re the one who’s sick. Are you trying to say you’ll get me sick? I don’t get fevers, Izu. I’m happy that you worry for me, though.

 

“Never mind, Shouto.” Izu laughs, and Shouto watches how his shoulders lightly bounce. When he stops laughing, his shoulders still move. You’re still cold. He can’t decide if he wants to help with his father’s quirk. It won’t be fire, but it’s close enough to fire that he’s scared to risk it. “What’s wrong?”

 

“I was wondering about whether or not to use my quirk to warm you up.” He admits. Izu hums, wondering the same.

 

“You can be a space heater?”

 

“Or an AC.” He witnesses Izu’s lips quirk into a smile, moving a bit closer to Shouto.

 

“That sounds perfect for someone with a fever. Think you can keep up?” While my training focused more on all-out quirk usage, I think this is easy enough. Shouto gives a small nod, before activating his father’s quirk. The soft boiling under his skin is uncomfortable at first, most likely due to his dislike of using it. The blanket they eat on is against one of the office walls, and the moment Shouto warms up the air around them, Izu leans back against the wall, relaxing.

 

“Better?”

 

“You’re perfect.” Izu hums, unaware of how his words make Shouto’s face red. If he wasn’t careful, he’d probably set himself on fire.

 

“Thank you.” He manages. They eat, enjoying each other’s presence without need for words. I’ve seen people interact with friends before. I’ve seen the shows and movies. So why does it feel like this? It doesn’t feel like what I’ve seen. While Shouto remains confused as to why he feels so much peace with Izu, he absolutely wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.

 

A soft thud on the wall grabs his attention, snapping him out of his thoughts. He turns and finds Izu asleep, breathing steady. He still has food on his face. Without thinking too much about it, he reaches up with his left hand, wiping some of the food off Izu’s chin, and some of his bottom lip. He freezes when Izu leans into the touch. Probably because he’s cold. Trying not to wake him, he wraps the blanket around his friend more securely, upping the output of his quirk.

 

He’s moves too fast for his own good. He needs rest.

 


 

 

Shouta is not happy. In fact, he’s furious. So angry that he might become a wrathful god and strike Oni down himself. To make matters worse, he returned home covered in flour. Hizashi won’t let him delete the pictures, saying that his floating hair and red eyes make him look even more like an evil spirit.

 

I’m going to haunt that brat.

 

Back home, Shinsou doesn’t seem shocked at all that his friend jumped out the window.

 

“Let me guess, you told Izuku that his vigilante days are numbered or something?” Okay, I can see how that was a mistake. Shouta nods, interested on any insight his friend may have.

 

“We still have to go to Tsukauchi today, to speak with him. It would have been nice if the actual criminal was present, but you’ll do.” He flashes a manic grin as panic takes over Shinsou’s eyes. “Regardless of whether or not you know his plans, we’ll question as normal.”

 

“We?” Ah, so it seems you’ve picked up some of Midoriya’s analytical skills. That’s not all. Your combat has greatly improved since befriending him in class. There’s no doubt he’s training you. He can’t be upset at a student’s progress, but the reason for it annoys him nonetheless.

 

“Besides Tsukauchi, I’m in charge of the investigation. Heroes are allowed to work for or with the police. In my case, I gather intel, discuss with them, and act accordingly.”

 

“Did they assign you because he’s a child?” I feel like everything would  have gone much differently if I knew his age right off the bat. If I had one more hint, I could have prevented this mess.

 

“No. They assigned me because I can erase his quirk.” Shinsou tenses, rightfully so. “They knew it was a healing quirk, and assumed that without it, he’d stop pulling reckless stunts in order to escape.”

 

“That’s kind of funny.” Shouta glares at the kid.

 

“We didn’t know his pain tolerance was already so high that he no longer cared about his quirk working.” Now I can't use my quirk on him. He'll just keep going. I can't let a child do that.

 

“He has a high pain tolerance, but he has an incredibly low pain threshold.” What?

 

“What do you mean by that?” That might make this more distressing than we realized. At this point, Shouta makes himself a cup of coffee and sits at the table besides Shinsou. It sounds like Midoriya has trusted Shinsou with a lot of information about himself.

 

“He has a theory that when he heals, his nerves are new. Or at least, newer. They’re sensitive, and he registers most touch as pain.” Dear lord. “He just has a high tolerance to it, and will break himself in order to accomplish something.” Meaning his goal of getting to Hisashi Midoriya. Shouta waits until Shinsou finishes breakfast, and goes to start the car.

 

Shinsou fidgets in the passenger seat, looking anywhere but at Shouta.

 

“I’m starting the questioning now.” Might as well ask about the more important things before seeing Tsukauchi.

 

“Shouldn’t the detective be present?” Nice try.

 

“It’s not about Midoriya. It’s about you.” Shouta sees Shinsou flinch out the corner of his eye. He pretends he didn’t see it. “Why were you living with Midoriya?” The longer the silence stretches, the worse Shouta feels the answer will be.

 

“My parents don’t love me.” Excuse me? “I’m adopted. When we found out my quirk, they stopped loving me. Talked about putting me up for adoption again.” I’ll have a chat with them. “When I tried being nice, or passive, they thought it was manipulation.”

 

“I can see why Midoriya started getting feral over having you stay.” Shinsou nods in response, not speaking. “You two were the first friends you’ve had in a long time, correct?”

 

“I was a late bloomer. My paperwork all said quirkless, so did Izuku’s. We didn’t have friends, society didn’t allow for it.” Midoriya was registered as quirkless? Until when? Maybe this can help get a lead on who he actually is. “When I got my quirk, not only did I not have friends, but people went out of their way to avoid me. I didn’t exist.” Let’s try leading him on.

 

“And why didn’t Midoriya make friends when his quirk manifested?”

 

“He didn’t have friends because he-” Shinsou abruptly snaps his teeth shut. “It’s not my place to tell you.” God damn. Stupid friendship.

 

“Because he what, Shinsou?”

 

“I can’t tell you. You know that.”

 

“I know you’re trying to be a good friend, but-”

 

“‘If you expose me, I’ll have to deal with you.’. When I found out he was Oni, he threatened me.” You two are inseparable now, what’s the problem?  “I know what you’re going to say. I’m not scared of him or anything, but I get the feeling that interfering with his work could cost me my life. I’m not stupid.” Stupid enough to befriend the vigilante, though. Shouta pulls into the station lot, parking.

 

“Listen up, we’re going to question you, and you’re going to answer. Silence isn’t an option. Do I make myself clear?”

 

“Yes, sir.”

 


 

 

Naomasa sits in the interrogation room, waiting for the kids Eraserhead mentioned to be brought in. Here I thought this vigilante would be easy to take down when he first appeared. At this point, he’d say Oni owes him some boxes of hair dye from the amount of greys he has coming in.

 

This is the kid Toshinori has taken interest in, and he has no idea why that’s such a bad idea! Apparently Eraserhead made an offhanded comment to him about Midoriya being a vigilante, but Toshinori assumed it was a ‘he once stopped a purse snatcher’ kind of situation. He has a straight jacket set aside for Midoriya. He doubts Shinsou will do much harm on his own. A knock at the door causes him to do a quick breathing exercise, preparing for the headache of a child about to walk into the room. The door opens, and in walks an angry Eraserhead, a tired looking Shinsou, and….

 

“He escaped, didn’t he?” I’m not surprised.

 

“He broke my bathroom window and jumped out from the second floor.” The two have a seat. Shinsou sits directly in front of Naomasa, in the chair. Eraserhead sits off to the side, ready to intervene when needed. “I brought someone still worth questioning, though.”

 

“I’m impressed you managed to keep Oni on lockdown for the night. I can barely get him in custody for an hour.” Okay, let’s see what I can get from Shinsou. “Hi, Shinsou. We’ve met before. How are you?”

 

“Tired, but alright.” True.

 

“What is your friend’s name?”

 

“Izuku Midoriya.” True.   Does his friend not know that Izuku Midoriya isn’t his real name? From what I’ve been told, these two know almost everything about each other.

 

“You are Catspiracy?” He nods, and Naomasa’s quirk also registers it as true. “He is Oni.”

 

“Yes.” True.

 

“Do you know what he wants with Hisashi Midoriya?”

 

“I’m not entirely sure.” True. Maybe there are a few secrets after all. Eraserhead told me Oni may want to kill Hisashi Midoriya. We need a motive.

 

“Do you know why he wants Midoriya?”

 

“He hurt his family.” True. So this is about avenging his cousin and aunt? Eraserhead told me about an incident on the first day of school. Maybe that Bakugou kid is also worth questioning. Though that’d reveal that Midoriya is Oni. We’ll wait on that one. Wait, the file we have on their deaths…

 

“The deaths of Inko and Mikumo Midoriya were caused by fire, but all of the files say that the fire was caused on accident. What are you implying?”

 

“Hisashi Midoriya set the fires.” True. I’ve never heard such conviction from this boy before. He’s dead set on the theory.

 

“Why would he do that? What’s his motive?” The interrogation takes a surprising turn, and Naomasa  feels it’s for the worse.

 

“The Inko’s side of the family only ever had weak quirks. They tended to get weaker as generations passed.” That’s the opposite of quirks nowadays. “I was told that Mikumo, Hisashi’s child, was a quirkless runt.” True. He set his family on fire because he had a quirkless child?

 

“He killed Izuku’s cousin because he was quirkless?” It’s Eraserhead who speaks up. Shinsou nods. “Why? What was there to gain?”

 

“Being associated with someone quirkless makes you weak. At least, that’s how most people see it.” Naomasa offers, also getting a nod.

 

“Is that why Izuku is scared of fire quirks?” Eraserhead asks. He is?

 

“Yeah, partially. I’d be too if I saw my family burn to death.” True.

 

“That apartment you two live in, is that…?” Shinsou nods. What apartment? These kids lived on their own?

 

“What apartment?” Naomasa asks, bringing the investigation back into his hands.

 

“Oni lives in a burnt down apartment, location unknown, Hisashi was last seen raiding it for food.” Well thank you for telling me.

 

“He lives where his family were killed?”

 

“Yeah. I think it’s to help keep his mind on task, that and the fact that he has no where else to go.” True. Does Shinsou really believe that? There’s lots of places he could have gone! He’s a child!

 

“Are you aware that you’re considered his accomplice?” Naomasa has to mention it.

 

“I’m not.” True. What? Why do you believe that?

 

“Oni has made it painfully clear that Shinsou here is a victim to his crimes. He basically said that if we so much as point a finger in Shinsou’s direction, all hell will break loose.” Great. Eraserhead sounds just as annoyed by it when he speaks.

 

“So we can’t charge Shinsou for anything.” He concludes. “Well, your Youtube channel will probably be taken down-” Before he finishes speaking, Shinsou holds a hand up, getting papers out of his pocket. He hands them to Naomasa so he can read them over. These are all examples of why his channel should be taken down, coupled with reasons as to why he has yet to break the law and any terms of service with the site. Well done.

 

“This paperwork was made by Oni, for this exact Scenario.” That just makes me angry!  “My channel and I are untouchable.” Technically speaking, he’s right. For the safety of my employees, I have to let him free. Who knows what Oni can do when he’s genuinely mad?

 

“Fine, you’re-” All at once, everyone’s phones go off. I swear to god if this is Oni. Upon pulling out his phone, Naomasa wishes he could teleport to Oni’s location and smack him right then and there.

 

It’s a picture of Oni laying across Endeavor’s desk, with his office entirely covered in paint.

 

 

It’s a mass text. We have a location. Eraserhead is already on his feet, not wasting time. He pauses when seeing Shinsou.

 

“Go back to my house, kid. Hizashi will let you in.” With that, he’s gone. Naomasa moves too, ordering officers to swarm the place.

 


 

 

Izuku is in Shouto’s room, laughing at the uproar one picture can cause. He dials Toshi’s number, hoping he got the timing right.

 

“Izuku, you sly dog.” Toshi answers, “You planned this, didn’t you?” Izuku snickers a bit, happy that it worked out.

 

“Yeah, I wanted to cut your questioning short. If I did it before you got questioned, they would have just postponed it. Any later and I would have been, well, too late.” I wish I could have seen it though. I can imagine the pure rage washing over their faces when they saw my picture!

 

“I made sure not to mention that you and Mikumo are the same person. They don't seem to be figuring that out yet." That's good. Izuku hears laughter through the speaker. "Who knew you could actually be smart.” Izuku scoffs at Toshi’s teasing.

 

“Don’t make me use my evil genius on you!” He whines, laughing. Shouto gives a small smile at the sound of his laughter. It’s a good thing I don’t have him on speaker phone, seeing as Toshi said 'Izuku' right off the bat. “Are you forgetting that my intellect is what’s kept me out of the police’s grimy little hands for so long?”

 

“No, no. It’s just entertaining to see one of your plans unravel.” There’s a period of time where Toshi doesn’t speak, unsure of what to say. “The note on the mirror said you saw Shigaraki?”

 

“Yeah,” Izuku breathes. “Shigaraki was entering a building just as I was leaving, and I planned on spying but I knew that I was in no condition to stick around.” Shouto tenses at the mention of the villain. “He looked like he had a meeting or something. Barely even looked at me.”

 

“Is that why you woke up screaming last night?” Ouch.

 

“Yeah. I think Shigaraki using his quirk on me traumatized me more than I thought it did.” Toshi hums on the other end. “I have a plan. I’ll talk to you about the details later, it’s not very complex.”

 

“But just enough to piss Eraserhead off?”

 

“Exactly! Just go about your day to day life and I’ll get in contact. I’m not abandoning you, just laying low.”

 

“I know, Izuku. Do what you have to.” The conversation trails off, and they say goodbye. When Izuku hangs up, he meets the eyes of a distressed Shouto.

 

“You know Shigaraki?” Oh boy.

 

“Yeah. We got into a fight and he…” Well, he heard me say it.

 

“What happened?” Right, Shouto once asked me what would happen if I fought him.

 

“It was a tie, for the most part.” Though I don’t consider what happened at USJ a tie, it’s better to call it that. While the heroes saved us in the end, it’s clear that the villains still won something from it. “After a while my quirk couldn’t keep up, but he got bored of me and moved on. I passed out.”

 

“Why did you pass out?” Izuku shivers, unsure if it’s from the fever or from recalling USJ.

 

“The pain was unbearable. He called me a new toy.” No matter how he meant it, it still sounds so fucking gross!

 

“I’m sorry.” Shouto comes across the room, sitting beside where he ordered Izuku to lay on the futon to rest. He puts a hand on Izuku’s shoulder, giving a light squeeze. “I’m sure you were doing what you felt was right.”

 

“I was. My friend was going to be killed by him, so I threw myself in front.” A spark of recognition settles in Shouto’s eyes. Uh oh, was that too much?

 

“That Midoriya kid did the same thing, I think. But he has an analysis quirk, there was no point in throwing himself in front of his friend like that. There must have been other ways.” Now hold on a second! I assure you if there was a way to save Toshi without turning into a pile of Moon Sand, then I would’ve done it!

 

“Say I didn’t have this quirk, and I was in his shoes. What would you have done if you had no time to save me?”

 

“I’d jump in….. Oh.” See! Ha!  “I suppose you’re right.”

 

“I know I am, you dork.” Shouto gives a glare that clearly holds no ill intent. He rests a hand on Izuku’s exposed face. “Is my temp any lower?”

 

“Doesn’t feel like it. You'd probably be cooler without this mask on...” Shouto frowns a bit. “How long do these usually last you?”

 

“Few days. I’ll be fine.”

 

“You probably never heal from them as fast because you’re always trying to do something else. You need to just relax for a while.”

 

“I know, Shouto.”

 

“When was the last time you relaxed?”

 

“Right now, with you.” When Izuku says it, he furrows his eyebrows a bit at Shouto’s reaction. His face just got red. Did I get him sick?  “What’s wrong?” Shouto jumps a bit.

 

“Nothing, nothing. My heart just felt funny for a second.”

 

“Maybe it’s heartburn from lunch?” Izuku offers, only getting a head shake. Shouto gives him a dissaproving look when Izuku stands. “Come on, you remember the plan.”

 

“That doesn’t mean I like it.” Izuku’s already moving to Shouto’s dresser. The bottom drawer is a bit bigger than the others. A person can fit into it if they’re fine with breaking and dislocating a few bones to do so. It’s a good thing I am!  They already took the time to move Shouto’s clothes out of the drawer and into the other ones. Once Izuku climbs inside, Shouto closes the dresser.

 

“I’ll let you know if I need to get out. Otherwise act as if you’re home alone.” Eraserhead should be on his way here now. Sure enough, someone’s ringing the doorbell. “Go get ‘em, tiger.” Izuku jokes, feeling a sudden rise in temperature in the room. Did Shouto just set himself on fire? Is he alright?  Shouto leaves the room, and Izuku waits.

 

“I understand, sir.” He hears Shouto say outside the room. He must have left the door open. The sound of all emotion being pushed out of Shouto’s voice saddens him. I hear two sets of approaching footsteps. Hello, dad! Long time no see!  It’s almost funny to Izuku, how Eraserhead is getting predictable.

 

“You know I have to search your room.” Eraserhead explains.

 

“I do.” Izuku listens to the sounds of Aizawa checking around the room. Sounds like he’s checking the closet right now. From the sound of it, the search is thorough. This is why Izuku decided to hide somewhere he wouldn’t think to look.

 

“Have you seen him?”

 

“Not in the past week or so, no.” Good, good. As much as I hate it, your deadpan voice is perfect for this.

 

“Why didn’t you speak up about knowing Oni?” Uh oh. Don’t you dare get him in trouble.

 

“I don’t know his identity under the mask. He’s my friend, I don’t want to lose him.” He’s being honest when needed.

 

“You realize I’ll have to speak to your father about this. You’re tied up with the person responsible for tarnishing his image.” Don’t you fucking dare, Eraser. I’ll take you out myself if you even think about it. Izuku tries his best to contain his anger, hoping Shouto can take care of it without his help.

 

“The only person tarnishing his image is himself.” There’s a hint of anger dripping into Shouto’s voice. “If I cared for my sperm donor of a father, don’t you think I’d have my friend stop his operation?” Eraserhead doesn’t speak a while.

 

“.....Oni once said that you’re also reason to take down Endeavor. What does he do?” Eraserhead’s voice grew softer, he knows this is very thin ice he’s walking on, and that Shouto can melt it any time he pleases.

 

“I wasn’t born because he wanted children. I was born because he wanted someone to surpass him.” Shouto, you don’t have to tell him. Wait until the sports festival. I have it all planned. Don’t worry, I’ll save you.

 

“Care to elaborate on that?”

 

“No. I want you out of my home, sir. My father wouldn’t be too pleased with the news that a lesser known hero had to search his home for the vigilante I befriended.” He’s right.

 

“Alright.” Eraserhead, you real weakness isn’t your eyes. It’s your desire to keep your students safe. He knows staying any longer would risk putting Shouto in harm. “You are to contact me the moment you see him, got it?”

 

“Yes, Sir.” After they leave the room, Izuku assumes they talk for a few more minutes outside. Shouto comes back and closes the bedroom door, helping Izuku get out of the drawer. He feels his bones and joints snapping back into place. Shouto winces a bit at every clicking sound his bones make.

 

“Did you remember to limp?”

 

“Yeah.” I had Shouto fake a limp when Aizawa was here to help determine whose footsteps were whose. It was also to put more pressure onto his need to keep his students safe. He’s too parental, it’ll get him killed one day.

 

“Good. How are you feeling?” Shouto widens his eyes a bit at his friend.

 

“I should be asking you that. Go lay back down.” He steps behind Izuku, planting a hand on either of his shoulders and forcing him to walk to Shouto’s futon. They sit down together, putting on a movie. This time, he’s next to Shouto’s cold side. Being folded up in the drawer made him feel scorching hot. More dinner is on the way. Shouto got a text not too long ago that Endeavor isn’t coming home tonight, because of his office. His sister is coming home soon, but doesn’t really talk to Shouto when his bedroom door is closed.

 

They have a great relationship, and have come to the agreement that bedrooms in this house are safe havens.

 

The boys eat when the food arrives, watching a show now.

 

“What is this?” Shouto asks, looking at the bright yellow on the screen.

 

“This show is called Banana Fish, and it better make you cry.” I barely got through the first two episodes without balling.

 

“Why is it called that?” Izuku almost laughs at the way Shouto tilts his head when confused.

 

“That’s why we’re going to watch it!”

 


 

 

It’s late, and they’ve long since turned the show off. Apparently the two can only handle so much emotional devastation from a show at a time. Shouto suggested putting on another Disney movie to lift their spirits a bit.

 

Shouto watches the movie, painfully aware that Izu has fallen asleep on him again. I’m glad he finally fell asleep. He looks at his friend, feeling nervous when he sees Izu’s face is still a bit red. With his right hand, he brings it close to Izu, but not quite touching. Just close enough to chill the air. I should try bringing the fever down. I’m starting to think he’s overusing his quirk. This might just be a drawback, on top of exhaustion. Shouto feels happy whenever he’s with Izu, as if life is actually looking up for him. He’s starting to think that as long as Izu’s by his side, it just might be.

 

He said he’s planning a surprise right after the Sport’s Festival ends. He’ll be there to see me compete. I won’t let him down. He thinks about Izu’s fear of fire. Well, I know I’m not going to use it, out of spite. Now I just have to be more adamant about it, so I don’t scare him.

 

Shouto tenses, feeling the boy wrap an arm around his waist, still asleep. Is he cold now?  He stops using his ice.

 

“Good night, Izu.”

Chapter Text

For the past week, Izuku’s been in hiding. His plan was to sneak on and off campus to turn in any assignments, and forge excuse notes for his absence. As far as anyone is concerned, he was simply sick. When reached out to by teachers and classmates, he said he feels good enough to attend the sports festival.

 

He’s been switching between staying at his apartment and staying with Shouto. After school he’d find ways to train Toshi and talk to his friend. Today’s the day of the Sports Festival, and he’s so ready to participate! His classmates are in their preparation room, getting ready. Izuku is…

 

Well, Izuku is locked inside one of the lockers.

 

This is the only part of the plan that could go wrong. If Aizawa sees me before I’m on the field, it’s all over. Speaking of Aizawa,

 

“Alright, settle down.” Aizawa got dragged into hosting with Present Mic, so this is the only chance he has to talk to the class. “I’m not exactly supposed to show favorites, and I’m not, but you all survived a villain attack. You’ve learned not to let fears hold you back from doing what you need to.” Izuku can see the class, looking through the vents in the locker. He watches as Aizawa’s eyes scan them, most likely searching for him. “I have no doubt that you will all do well. If you feel nervous about the crowd remember that there’s someone in there watching for you. If any of you don’t have someone in the crowd, I’m there too.” Woah, sappy sappy! I might just melt out of this locker!  Without waiting to hear the student’s responses, he leaves.

 

Toshi lets him out the locker, and all eyes turn to him.

 

“You’re alive?!” Kaminari yells.

 

“We thought you got kidnapped!” Kirishima decides to join in, as well as the rest of the class.

 

“I was sick, now I’m not.”

 

“Why were in the locker, kero.” Tsuyu asks.

 

“I wanted a quick nap, and I figured the only way you guys wouldn’t wake me up was to hide.” I’m surprised they seem to buy this shit. The only person who looks entirely unconvinced is Kacchan. He glares and looks the other way, like he doesn’t care about what’s happening. Don’t get on my nerves, Kacchan. I’ll wipe the floor with your caramel-scented, protein shake drinking ass! The class goes back into a quiet chatter, and Izuku and Toshi have claimed a corner of the room for themselves, unbothered by others.

 

“First year students may start making their way to the arena.” Nedzu’s voice cheerfully calls over the intercom. Class 1-A gets up, only to be halted by Shouto blocking the door.

 

“Midoriya.” Izuku freezes, not used to being on the recieving end of this glare. It’s so cold. “I don’t know what’s going on with you. I think that in terms of quirks, strength, and combat, I’m better than you.” Ho ho! A declaration of war! How sweet, Shouto. Frankly, I don’t know if I can keep up my charade of not being your friend.

 

“Yeah, probably.” He shrugs, causing Toshi to almost laugh aloud. Other classmates like Kaminari, Sero, and Kirishima whisper things like ‘oh snap’ and ‘burn! Sizzle!’. “All I have is my smarts. Don’t underestimate them, pretty boy.” Looking a bit shocked, Shouto blinks at him.

 

“I’m not joking around. For whatever reason, Aizawa is in your corner. I don’t care to know why that is, but I’m going to beat you.” Shouto storms out.

 

“The two strongest in the class are declaring war!” Uraraka laughs, getting an explosion from Kacchan.

 

“If the two strongest in the class were declaring war, this chucklefuck wouldn’t be involved!” Kacchan yells, stomping over to Izuku. He grabs the boy by the collar and lifts him, “I’ll show you and that Half-and-half fuck that I’m better than all you shits combined, you hear me?”

 

“I dunno, I might have gone deaf from your volume. Repeat that?” Izuku snickers in his former friend’s face, watching his eyes fill with even more rage than he thought possible. “We have to go. Care to let me down, Kacchan?”  Izuku breaks out of Kacchan’s grip himself, grabs Toshi’s arm, and leaves the room.

 

“You’ve been back in class for all of two seconds and you’re a target.”

 

“I’m a villain magnet, what can I say?” I’d actually say a trouble magnet in general. I guess that makes me…. Attractive? Ha!

 

“You called him pretty boy.” Toshi laughs, leaning on Izuku’s shoulder with an elbow.

 

“Did not!” Izuku protests, despite the fact that he did call Shouto that.

 

“Did too!” Their conversation breaks into laughter as they reach the entrance to the area. The hold their arms above their head, blocking out the bright sun. Most of the other First year classes are there already. Looks like Kacchan almost made us late!

 

“Ladies and Gents, the survivors of a real life villain attack, Class 1-A!” Present Mic announces from the booth. “Shouta, this is your homeroom class!”

 

“Yes.” Is all Aizawa says. Toshi and Izuku cackle at the exchange, proclaiming it comedy gold.

 

“Erm, anyways, The on-field host is none other than the rated R hero: Midnight!” The crowd loses it, and Izuku sees the student’s faces go red.

 

“Hello everyone! Thank you for coming today. I see we have a full arena!” She cheers, waving around some tassels. Wait, tassels? Where did she even get those? She doesn’t have pockets!  “Will Katsuki Bakugou and Izuku Midoriya please come up to the stage for their speeches? For the first time ever, we had a tie in the entrance exam! Bakugou got first with only combat points, and Midoriya got first with only rescue points! What a delicious variety of students!”

 

Speech? I wasn’t told about no fuckin’ speech! What do I say? What, do they want me to be myself? Because that’s a huge mistake!  Izuku immediately thinks of the heart attack Aizawa is sure to have upon seeing Izuku mosey up to the microphone. It brings him joy, and the courage to go and speak.

 

“I’ll go first, dick-for-brains.” Kacchan hisses on their way up.

 

“Sure thing.” Like he said, Kaachan goes and snatches the mic, waiting for utter silence.

 

“I just want to say, I’m going to win.” Dear lord. Directly after that, Kacchan aggressively shoves the microphone to Izuku and waddles off stage. The crowd of students before him boo at Kacchan’s words.

 

“He has such a way with words, don’tcha think?” Izuku starts, getting laughs from the audience. “Well, you heard him. He’s going to win. That’s it, Sports Festival over!” More laughter. “In all seriousness, I agree with his sentiment. Not that he specifically will win, because let’s face it, it’d be a miracle that he isn’t disqualified for just being himself. I think each and every one of us should walk out and believe they’re going to win.” Am I actually doing it? Look at me go. Izuku Midoriya: Comedy champion, winner of hearts!  “I expect every student before me to give it their all. We all have at least someone in the audience to impress. If not, someone at home. If not that, then find someone you wish to impress.” I’m parroting what Aizawa said on purpose. I want to piss him off. “I, for one, have my dear old dad watching me.” Izuku points directly to the booth, at Aizawa. “I’ll make you proud.” He turns and hands the mic back to Midnight and joins his class.

 

Kacchan is shaking like an angry chihuahua. I wonder if he’d be mad if I pet him. Okay, so it might have been a bit mean for Izuku to turn Kacchan’s speech against him, but can you blame him?

 

The games are decided by a spinning wheel. Everything they do is at the mercy of chance. Sure, chance. Absolute luck. No bullshit here. Nope. No, sir. The wheel stops on ‘obstacle course’, getting Izuku excited.

 

“Do you think it’ll be like wall climbing and roof hopping?” He asks, elbowing Toshi’s side.

 

“No chance. It’ll probably be stuff we’ve already done before stuffed into one big course.”

 

“Like the first day of class?” Toshi nods, smiling a bit at the fond memory. The day they started becoming friends. “Hey, promise me that we’ll go all out on each other if we have to?”

 

“Of course.” I’ll make you regret this agreement, buddy ol’ pal. The students are more or less corralled into a starting area of the obstacle course. “Are you thinking what I’m thinking?”

 

“This is the first test, yeah.” Who’s has the biggest chance of getting ahead? Someone I know? Shouto might get all icy and freeze our feet to the ground. “Toshi, I have an idea.”

 

When Mic calls the start, Izuku and Toshi have already wiggled their way up to the front as much as they can. Now it’s time for Toshi to do his part.

 

“ARE YOU READY KIDS?” Toshi yells. It’s so weird to hear him louder than an indoor voice.

 

“AYE AYE CAPTAIN!” Many kids are too caught up in the hype, readily answering his call. Toshi takes hold of them.

 

Lift me and Izuku up. Form a path.” They do as told, lifting the two by the feet and letting them walk on their shoulders and hands. Just as Izuku guessed, Shouto freezes the feet of those on the ground.

 

Except his classmates all predicted him. He sees Kacchan boost himself over the crowd, and Sero swinging from tape attached to the ceiling. Yaoyorozu makes a large metal pole and vaults herself over the ice, abandoning the staff. Mine! Toshi and Izuku run, and he swipes the staff off the ground, carrying it with him.

 

“That’s very on brand of you.” Toshi snickers as they run. I’m slowing down so I can stay with him.

 

“Shut it.” The first obstacle appears to be robots, all zero pointers. Hello Darkness, my old friend. Shouto takes it upon himself to freeze the robots in unbalanced poses, ready to crash on other students. It’s painfully obvious to Izuku which way they’ll fall, so he has no issue dodging falling metal. “Follow me.” He hisses to Toshi, before weaving through the direct paths of the robots. Kacchan is in second place, with Izuku and Toshi following. We just need to keep up. We don’t need to win right off the bat.

 

“Looks like class 1-A is in the lead! In front is Shouto Todoroki and Katsuki Bakugou, closely followed by Izuku Midoriya and Hitoshi Shinsou! From what I understand, Shouta, this is your homeroom class? What are you teaching these kids?!”

 

“I didn’t teach them this. They’ve faced life threatening situations, they’ve simply learned not to hesitate.” He sounds as tired as usual. Be awake to see my surprise.

 

“You heard him, folks! He sucks at his job!!” The audience can hear a small yelp through the speakers, meaning Aizawa most likely smacked Mic, or something to that extent. “L-Looks like our students are coming up to their next obstacle!” I can see them, but not what the next challenge is. The ground looks level, which means it’s probably spike pits or some shit.

 

“Next up is ‘The Fall’, students must cross chasms by using the stones and tightropes.” There’s a moment of silence, and Izuku can’t tell if it’s for anticipation or boredom. “If you fall into the chasm, not touching the ropes or pillars, you’re automatically out.” Oh man! I could’ve fallen and ran!

Izuku considers pole vaulting, but he doesn’t think he can get far enough. Even if I can’t go the whole way, I can make the jump and try for one of the last ones. Toshi gives Izuku a look, watching his friend back up and get a running start. He firmly plants the metal into the ground and takes off.

 

“Is Izuku Midoriya flying?! That’s not his quirk!” I’m so lucky they’re treating me like a normal student right now. “My, My, Shouta! Quit grinding your teeth like that!” Yes, I’m pissing him off!  The wind feels nice, reminding him of the fun of hopping from roof to roof. Man, I miss patrols. Izuku takes a rough landing, feeling a knee shatter upon hitting the stone. He walks it off, running and jumping to the rest of the ropes.

 

It’s kind of like jumping on powerlines. Not that he does or anything. Okay, maybe once or twice.

 

A part of him feels bad at leaving Toshi behind, but he knows that Toshi would be mad at him holding back.

 

“And it seems the final obstacle has been reached!” Minefield? Piece of cake! Maybe carrot cake, but cake nonetheless. If looking for them, the faint outlines of where shallow mines are buried can be seen. To test out the potency, Izuku carefully digs one up. Kacchan and Shouto are a little further ahead, walking slowly while also trying to knock each other down. Izuku holds the mine like a discus, careful not to hold too tightly. He gets a good spin and swing, releasing when his aim is more towards Kacchan. Shouto, you’re lucky I have a soft spot for you. The mine lands in front of the boys, setting off another mine and blowing them back.

 

“Oooh that’s gotta hurt!” Present Mic chuckles. So they’re actual mines? Most likely just dialed down. They might hurt just enough for someone to not want to do a mad dash to the finish line. What kind of self-sacrificing fuck would just sprint through a minefield?!

 

I would, duh!

 

Izuku squats a bit, hitting his thighs. He hasn’t had enough practice with his Hysterical Strength move, but he theorizes that willing more adrenaline to his legs might help him a bit. Not by much, though. Just in case, he picks up two more mines to carry. With a deep breath, he sprints.

 

“It looks like Midoriya has thrown caution to the wind and it just outrunning the explosions?!” Mic yells, causing Shouto and Kacchan to turn and glare at him. For a second, it looks like they decided to fight the common enemy. He sprints directly between them, knowing they’ll get caught up in the aftermath of it. I can feel my feet kicking off the ground. I’m just barely outrunning the detonations. Izuku can feel the heat radiating through the soles of his shoes.

 

“GET BACK HERE YOU FUCKING DEKU!” Kacchan screeches. Target locked, dumbass. Izuku tosses one mine in the general direction of his voice. Out the corner of his eye, he sees ice creeping to the left of him. He tosses the other one. Sorry Shouto. Don’t worry, this has little effect on today’s outcome. It’s true. Izuku has everything planned out.

 

“And in first place is- IZUKU MIDORIYA!” He crashes onto the ground, catching his breath. He’s not so much catching his breath, as he’s letting his body reset. The burns from the mines aren’t so visible on camera, but he’d like them gone as soon as possible. Izuku feels eyes on him. He turns, catching Kacchan and Shouto glaring. I bet Aizawa is glaring too. All of you can fight me.

 

If the rounds were to have one on one matches, Izuku might die of happiness. Combat might be something he considers himself advanced in compared to a lot of the kids here.

 

A pair of hands land on his shoulders, and he tilts his head up to see Toshi. He has a seat next to Izuku, and they wait for the rest of the kids to finish.

 

“What place did you get?” Izuku asks.

 

“I think tenth or eleventh. Your training really paid off.” You’re fucking welcome, buddy!  “Good job getting first. I can sense Aizawa having an aneurysm from here.” This is the longest amount of time the two have spoken in the past weak. In person, that is. So many years of being alone, Izuku forgot what it felt like to miss someone.

 

“I know, It’s great.” He snickers. He looks into the booth, seeing Aizawa standing, no doubt watching where Izuku and Toshi sit. For the past weak, Toshi has basically been living with Aizawa and Mic. His parent’s don’t care. Not that they ever did in the first place. I’ll gouge your fucking eyeballs for what you’ve done to my Toshi. The heroes have been clear on not wanting Toshi going back to the apartment, for the fear of Hisashi coming back.

 

“Are your predictions right so far?”

 

“So far. It doesn’t matter who wins what. I have the events predicted, and the winner of the festival predicted. If wrong, my video has an explanation of the other possibilities.”

 

“You’re too thorough.” Toshi sighs. “You’re scary when you have a goal.”

 

“Thank you.” Izuku gets his shoulder smacked.

 

“So, what’s the next event, oh mighty prophet?” Laugh all you want. The wheel is rigged and anyone with critical thinking skills can guess. The last of the students finish, and the boys get up, walking to the main crowd. Midnight stands on her stage with the wheel, announcing that she’ll spin for the next event. It spins, and spins, and spins. When it stops, Izuku turns to his friend, ready to mimic Midnight’s voice.

 

“Up next is the Cavalry Battle!” Izuku mocks as she says it. He matches her tone and timing perfectly, even copying her sexy posing. Toshi starts cackling, and Izuku joins in.

 

He misses that Kacchan saw him predict the event.

 

Chapter Text

Toshi and Izuku watch other people forming teams. They need mobility or fighting power. Everyone they know is taken except..

 

“Deku!” Uraraka calls. She’s taken to calling Izuku ‘Deku’ as a means to say ‘you can do it’. It’s more likely to distract that Kacchan calls me that. She doesn’t know he’s talking about a dead kid.

 

“Ah! Just the kind of person I wanted!” Uraraka has joined the party! Iida should be good for our team. His speed plus Uraraka’s weightlessness would be ideal. “Iida! We were wondering if you wanted to be on our team?”

 

“I’d like to work with you all, but I’ve already joined Todoroki’s team. When he made that declaration of war, I learned that I too should consider you my rival.” With that, Iida leaves. Their team doesn’t need firepower if they can outrun everything. All is, hopefully, solved when a support course girl named Mei Hatsume comes over and joins the team. We didn’t ask, but it worked out all the same.

 

If only she’d stop referring to them by their point values.

 

“Do you think you’re really worth ten million?” Toshi asks.

 

“Ten million out of ten, yes.” They all snort at the awful joke. “We can keep our points and just outrun them. We don’t need any other headband. If we lose this, Toshi’s quirk still hasn’t been announced to the world. He’s the ace up their sleeve.

 

“Alright listeners! Time’s up!” The teams line up along the outer portion of the field,  “G-G-G-G-GO!” Mic calls. Most teams just try to attack whoever is closest. Kacchan’s and Shouto’s team come straight to Izuku. They run like their lives depend on it. Toshi is the front runner, with Izuku as horse to be the center of command. They’re mostly worried about Monoma.

 

“DEKU!” Kacchan screams, smacking Kirishima’s head as if it’d give him a boost.

 

“Oh me oh my.” Izuku yawns, riling Kacchan up even more.

 

“Any plan besides running?” Uraraka asks.

 

“Not really, no. I’ll take care of combat.”

 

“Uh, Ten?” You shortened my nickname?  “What exactly is your quirk? I don’t think anyone on this team specializes in combat.”

 

“That’s where you’re wrong. Izuku is gifted in combat.” Toshi chimes in, sounding a bit too proud of his friend.

 

“My quirk is Analysis. I can find weak spots in attacks with it.” As long as I don’t give in to my usual bullshit.

 

“Get BACK HERE YOU SHITTY DEKU!”

 

“Why don’t you hOP OFF MY DICK, KACCHAN.” Izuku snaps back, almost stunning Kacchan entirely. I forgot he doesn’t know how much I’ve changed. Maybe it’ll make him believe I’m not Mikumo.

 

Time’s halfway up, and they’ve managed to keep their points. Out the corner of his eye, Izuku sees Shouto approaching.

 

Yaoyorozu, Iida, and Kaminari. What plan beside freezing us would they think of? Pikachu would probably shock us if he wasn’t touching his team. The only way to combat that would be to… Holy shit.

 

“Hatsume! Do you have any sort of metal pole?”

 

“No, none of my babies were designed like staffs! All my works of art are compact and perfect! Why, whatcha thinking?”

 

“Toshi, try and get a hold of Yaoyorozu before they get in too close.”

 

“Yes, sir.” Toshi deadpans. “Yaoyorozu, can you recommend some teas after this is all over? I’ll need it to sleep after this.” Using her weakness and asking about tea. Pure evil.

 

“Of course! There’s this-”

 

“Yaoyorozu!” Shouto yells in a scolding tone. It’s too late.

 

"Make us a metal rod and hand it over.” She does as told almost immediately, looking horrified when he releases her. Izuku grabs it, ready to be stupid as all hell. “What’s your plan?”

 

“Can’t say it out loud. Their team is close enough to hear.”

 

“Well well! Looks like Team Midoriya and Team Todoroki are going to face off!” Present Mic announces. They’ve managed to avoid Monoma. Time’s almost up.

 

“Yaoyoruzu, now!” Just as predicted, she makes an isolation sheet, ready to let Kaminari shock those around them.

 

“Let go of my legs!” Izuku commands, already jumping towards the other team. The moment Kaminari starts, he strikes the pole down. He takes most of the voltage on for himself.

 

“Deku!” Uraraka screams.

 

“Well, Folks! Looks like Midoriya took one for the team!” He hears Aizawa sigh into the microphone. His muscles tense, and his body starts to lock up and seize . When he starts falling, Hatsume uses a small grappling hook and pulls him back. Kacchan left his team earlier, so he knows it’s allowed.

 

“Are you crazy?!” Hatsume yells with a wild smile.

 

“Probably.” His muscles still tremor, but he’s secure.

 

“You and your stupid poles.” Toshi hisses.

 

“Well, if I don’t make it as a Pro Hero my backup plan was to be a stripper.”

 

“Izuku!”

 

“I’d make millions from pole dancing and you know it.” The world ought to know it! Okay, we still have our points. The only person they haven’t use to their fullest extent is Iida-

 

Shouto’s team passes Izuku before he can even think about a plan. They snatch the headband off his head, gaining distance.

 

“Iida what was that?!” Uraraka yells, equally shocked.

 

“It’s called Recipro Burst! It’s a power move!  I don’t use it often because it stalls my engines a bit.” You say that like time’s up.

 

“Get them.” Izuku breathes. Uraraka uses her quirk and Hatsume activates all of her speed based gadgets. It’ll never be as fact as Iida was, but fast enough to get in for one more close fight. Shout’s eyes widen in slight panic as Izuku moves to get their band back. Shouto’s not stupid, he wouldn’t just leave it on top. He’d mix it. There’s no way to guess which one is ours, so I should go for the one on his noggin to be safe. Izuku tries to swipe and grab Shouto’s headband, but the boy does something that startles them both.

 

Shouto uses his left side. Fear overcomes Izuku but only for a split second. It’s only Shouto. He wouldn’t hurt me…. Well, he wouldn’t hurt Oni. Shit. That moment was all it took for Shouto to look to Izuku, dropping his guard entirely. Rather than try to keep his headband, Shouto’s eyes move to the crowd. He’s wondering if Oni saw it. Swallowing down whatever emotion Izuku felt, he grabs the headband.

 

“TIME’S UP!” Present Mic calls.

 

“Feel free to break away from your teams, it’s over.” Aizawa contributes. Shouto still stares into the crowd. I’m okay, Shouto. It’s alright. “In first place is Team Todoroki, second is Team Midoriya, then Team Bakugou and…” Izuku zones out, suddenly eager to leave. He hears something about the fourth place team having members hit by a sleeping quirk of some sort, and will be unable to proceed to the next round.

 

Toshi acts as Izuku’s eyes, waiting to notify him of Aizawa’s presence. The kids are going to have lunch, and then they can choose between either preparing for their rounds, or doing the extra games. The two sit and eat during lunch, until Shouto appears in front of the table.

 

“When you’re done eating, come with me.” This is a bit forward, don’tcha think?

 

“Sure, Todoroki. Did you eat yet?” Shouto blinks at him.

 

“What?” The way Toshi takes a bit of his food to keep from laughing is painfully obvious.

 

“You’re fighting in the rounds, your blood sugar might get low. Go eat and get me when you’re done.” Without another word, Shouto walks away. He’s practically radiating confusion.

 

“Oh my god.” Toshi’s practically inhaling his rice. Izuku elbows him in the ribs. “You said his blood sugar might get low?! Holy shit. I didn’t know you were funny!”

 

That’s what you think is funny? This entire joke that is my life and that’s the joke!?”

 

“Yeah, pretty much.” He’s dead to me.

 

Just as told, Shouto eats and gets Izuku. What is this about? Did my reaction to his fire give me away? They leave a cafeteria altogether, walking in silence to one of the tunnels along the outside. Somewhere no one will find us, huh? Why?

 

The stand on opposite sides of the wall. The sun shines on Izuku’s face while the darkness of the shadows consumes Shouto.

 

“Midoriya, you got me to do something I promised myself I wouldn’t do.” Shouto starts. He’s calling me Midoriya? He doesn’t know yet. “I used my flames after promising myself I wouldn’t. I have a dear friend watching from the audience. When I saw that fear in your eyes, I thought of my friend’s own fear of fire, and I was ashamed.” Oh, Shouto.

 

“It’s alright.”

 

“Do you know why I never use my flames?” If I start calling his dad a bag of giraffe shit, he’ll put two and two together. Izuku shakes his head, realizing where this conversation is going. “I thought I’d have to beat Bakugou without my flames to prove to my father that I can be the best without his quirk. No. It’s you. It’s always you that’s the enemy, Midoriya.”

 

“I don’t follow.”

 

“Have you ever heard of quirk marriages?” Shouto recounts his childhood to Izuku, and Izuku feels all the rage and sadness he did the first time he was told about it. “We both have fathers we need to surpass. I have a theory about you, Midoriya.” He’s onto me. What did I do? How the fuck do I get out of this? “Are you Aizawa’s secret love child or something?”

 

“Huh?” Izuku’s shocked. All of his snark is gone.

 

“You intern under him, have a lot of his same mannerisms. You two have a deeper relationship than with any other students. As with Shinsou. I have a theory that you two are half brothers, both fathered by Aizawa-”

 

“I’m going to stop you right there.” Just wait until I tell them this!  “I’m just interning under him. Toshi is my best friend. That’s it. Roll credits.”

 

“Then why does Aizawa treat you like his children?” Shouto narrows his eyes at Izuku.

 

“Ask Oni about that.” At the mention, Shouto stiffens. “I’m a part of the investigation. I know you two are good friends, and I know he’s here.” At this point, Shouto is walking towards Izuku. Does he think I’m threatening him? No! Shouto chill!  Izuku tends to hum as a nervous habit without realizing it. When he starts, Shouto freezes before grabbing his face aggressively.

 

He doesn’t grab Izuku’s face in a romantic ‘let me look into your beautiful eyes’ kind of way. No, he grabs Izuku’s face like a dog who’s eating something that it should absolutely not be eating, but does it anyways. Izuku half expects Shouto to say ‘drop it’ with that look in his eyes.

 

“Todoroki….?” Izuku gets his face back as Shouto drops his arm, but doesn’t take a step away.

 

“I’m sorry. You reminded me of someone I know. Then I thought your mouth looked familiar and I uh…” Based on what?! His face is so red, he’s actually embarrassed.

 

“Ahem.” Someone clears their throat, and Izuku meets the eyes of a very done Shouta Aizawa. “Midoriya, a word?”

 

Shouto gives Izuku a look of ‘I told you so’ and backs away. He leaves without any other words.

 

“Coming.” Izuku sighs, following Aizawa to a private room to speak in.

 

“You little shit! You were in the prep room, weren’t you?!”

 

“Fitting in a locker is no issue if you break a few bones, sir.” Izuku makes sure to flash a shit eating grin. Believe or not, I think I kinda missed you.

 

“You know I can’t keep you from competing without exposing you, well played.” They’re halfway down the hall, still having to go upstairs and around the corner.

 

“I missed you too, dad.” Izuku gets slapped with a scarf. “What happens after this? I was too tired to think it through.”

 

“I continue to try to get evidence against you, you probably keep being a royal pain in the country’s ass.”

 

“So business as usual?” Aizawa sighs and gives a tired nod. That’s too easy. You’re also planning something, you freak. 

 

“Where are you staying tonight?”

 

“My apartment?” Aizawa glares as if he knew that was the answer.

 

“Why the hell are you still staying in that burnt down dump if I am offering a place for you and Shinsou to stay?!” Dump? 

 

“Because then I can’t do my vigilante work? D-D-D-D-Duh?”

 

“You’re staying with me or I’ll expose you as Oni and ruin the school’s rep.” I want to say he’s joking, but Aizawa doesn’t have a sense of humor. If Izuku gets exposed as Oni right now, people would look into his identity and learn his real motives.  He’d have more heroes after him than just the police and Eraserhead. Limited freedom or a country wide manhunt? Stupid Aizawa!

 

“Fine.” He mumbles.

 

“What was that?” Aizawa flashes a manic grin, knowing he wins this round.

 

“I SAID-” Izuku freezes at the rise in temperature, watching on as Endeavor turns the corner.

 

“Midoriya. Just the one I wanted to speak to.” Endeavor approaches the boy, not noticing how he’s terrified of the fire. He doesn’t want to be this close. His breath starts to catch and speed, his heart beats out of his chest. Please just get the fuck away from me. “Why won’t you greet your elder? Speak up!” Help me. Just get him away from me. Helpmehelpmehelp-

 

Aizawa steps between them.

 

“You shouldn’t be back here.” Aizawa says venomously.

 

“Excuse me? My Shouto is in this, I have every right to see him!”

 

“You said you were looking for Midoriya. By the looks of it, he doesn't want to be anywhere near you.” Izuku so badly wants to speak up, to defend himself. He can’t find the words. He looks at Endeavor and sees Hisashi. Will I be able to kill Hisashi if I can’t even face Endeavor?

 

“Who exactly are you? Just some low-budget teacher? Move-” Aizawa’s hair floats, blocking more of Endeavor from Izuku’s view. The temperature in the air drops. He’s erasing his quirk.

 

“My name is Eraserhead. I am a pro hero,  and I can’t stand you. Get out of this area.”

 

“I’ll have you know-” Endeavor tries moving towards them. In a flash, Eraserhead is already behind the man, grabbing his arms and shoving his face against the wall.

 

“You either get the fuck out of my sight and away from my kid, or I take you into custody for trespassing, harassment of a minor, and I think I could make a pretty good child abuse case against you.” He moves away from the shitstain on Heroic’s history, and pushes him forward with a hard shove. Very reluctantly does he give the quirk back.

 

Endeavor leaves, mumbling under his breath.

 

“You okay?” Aizawa asks, letting his hair fall. Izuku didn’t even notice he fell to the ground.

 

“I think so….. Thanks.” Despite how awkward the situation gets, they keep walking. Now they have no time to speak privately, as they both have to report to their respective areas.

 

“So, why did I find Todoroki about to kiss you, despite not knowing you’re Oni? He’s cheating?”

 

“He was NOT. He grabbed my face like a lunatic because he almost recognized me! And! It’s! Not cheating if he’s not with Oni!” Izuku feels his face getting red.

 

“Consider this embarrassment a mere fraction of punishment you’ll get for your crimes.”

 

“I hate you.”

 

“Bitch, I hate you too.” Aizawa yawns, walking away looking completely unbothered.

Chapter Text

Izuku walks back to where his classmates are, ready to watch the rounds. He’s supposed to go against Toshi as his first fight, he doesn’t know how to feel about it.

 

“Did you predict one on one battles too?” Toshi asks softly.

 

“Yeah. Everything’s right so far.”

 

“Scary.” Despite having to fight each other in a few rounds, they’re calm. “Can you at least let me look cool when you kick my ass?” Ah, so he knows that I have to beat him into the ground.

 

“No. You don’t get to go out in style.” Toshi looks betrayed.

 

“Truly, I’m hurt. All I have to do is brainwash you and I win.” There’s this theory I want to test if that happens. A way for me to break out of it.

 

“I’m not going to speak to you, dumbass.”

 

“I have plenty of things to say memorized to get you to speak, Izuku.” Color me stoked, but I think I’ll manage without my witty comebacks.

 

“ALRIGHT FOLKS! The first round of the final round of the Sports Festival is Mina Ashido against Yuga Aoyama!” They come out to the center of a concrete field, ready to fight the moment Midnight waves her tassel.

 

“Oh, I’m staying with you guys tonight. Aizawa threatened me into it.” Izuku notices the glare Kacchan gives out the corner of his eye. Fine, you nosy fucker, I’ll switch to Sign.

 

“Cool. I heard the class wants to go out for dinner after the festival, you in?” Toshi signs back.

 

“Maybe. I don’t know if I’d be able to make a clean getaway from the stunt I’m pulling later.” Probably, If I leave the moment it starts. Though that’d make me look suspicious. They watch the two fight, even though it ends fairly quick.

 

The next round is Shouto and Sero. Izuku wonders why Shouto’s shoulder have a slight tremor in them as he walks to the center. His fists are balled up, showing white knuckles. He didn’t see his father before this, did he? Present Mic calls start, and Izuku moves in time to cover Toshi from the large pillar of ice that protrudes out the stadium less than a few seconds after they start.

 

“You predicted that too?!” Toshi wheezes.

 

“No. I saw the start of the ice and guessed which way it’d move. Ice is easy to predict if you’re quick enough to see it move in the first place.”

 

“So yes, you predicted it.” He deadpans, pushing Izuku off of him. “Thanks for being a human shield.” As Shouto unfreezes Sero, Izuku can’t help but notice the sad, almost tortured expression on Shouto’s face. Does using his fire hurt him that bad? I’ll get him to use it. I’ll save you, Shouto.

 

Izuku joins in when the audience yells ‘don’t mind’, absolutely losing his shit over it.

 

The two watch the rounds until Iida’s comedically frustrating match against Hatsume. They’re up next, so they walk down together.

 

“You won’t go easy on me, right?” Toshi wants to reaffirm.

 

“Yes! I will, because true friends kick in each other’s teeth.” For that stupid remark, Izuku gets slapped in the back of the head. “Hey, getting a head start is unfair!”

 

“No,” Toshi kicks his knee in, tripping Izuku. “What’s not fair is having a regeneration quirk in these matches. How are you going to get around that?!”

 

“The cameras don’t pick up what the fighters are saying at all. If the fighter notices that I’m healing, no one would hear it. I can try my best to slow down my healing but I can’t completely stop it. The biggest problem might be Recovery Girl, actually.”

 

“Why’s that?”

 

“She expects every single student to at least get looked over by her. At least a bump, bruise, or scrape to heal. It’d be suspicious if I fought so many people and didn’t need her at all.” Toshi hums.

 

“You’re fucked.” Very straightforward sentiment but oh so true.

 

“Very much so, yes.” They have to part ways now to come out of their entrances. It only takes a minute for them to meet back up.

 

“Up next is Hitoshi Shinsou against Izuku Midoriya! Shouta, one of these students is your intern. Both of them are your students, what do you think of this match up?” I want to hear this! Aizawa sighs, ready to speak.

 

“These two are actually best friends. They know the ins and outs of each other’s quirks. I’ll say it now. Shinsou’s quirk is Brainwashing. Verbally respond to him and your under his spell. Midoriya’s is called Analysis.” He’s going with it. “Just as it sounds, it gives him a major boost in intelligence. Knowledge wise, he’s probably smarter than 95% of everyone here.”

 

“Knowledge wise?” Present Mic asks.

 

“Yes. In terms of general common sense, he lacks it. This boy has too much stupidity for his own good at times, too.” Um, is this allowed? This SO isn’t allowed!

 

“Interesting match-up indeed. Start!!” It seems Present Mic got too excited, seeing as Midnight is the one who actually calls start.

 

“Start!” She calls, sticking her tongue out at the booth.

 

“Lovely weather we’re having. Wouldn’t you agree?” Toshi tries, getting Izuku to bite his tongue to keep from laughing. Izuku charges, aiming to make this quick. Toshi dodges and attempts to kick his leg out from under him.

 

“You’re such a-” Izuku dodges. “Dumbass.” He signs, finding openings. He might just want to tire Toshi out, but he also wants to have fun. I taught him how to fight like this, I can end this. Toshi moves to give a right hook, and Izuku drops down and hits Toshi with an explosive kick to the midsection.

 

Toshi flies back, smacking the ground. It’s clear the wind is knocked out of him. I’ll just drag his scrawny ass out of bounds. When he moves to grab his foot, Toshi speaks up.

 

“Making sure you look good for your boyfriend?”

 

“He’s not-” Fuck. There’s a sliver of a second in between when Izuku realizes he fucked up, and when Toshi activates his quirk. In that split second, Izuku sticks his tongue out, in between his teeth, while still keeping his lips closed.

 

Turn around and walk out of bounds. ” Sure enough, Izuku’s teeth snap shut under Toshi’s control. His teeth cut through his tongue, severing it. Izuku jolts out of it, surprised it actually worked. My plan was to choke to death on my own blood, but this works too. He turns and grabs Toshi’s foot, dragging him to the line. Toshi tries to fight, unable to break out of Izuku’s grip. “How’d you break out of it?! Even if I could answer, I’d have to explain the fact that there are now two tongues in my mouth. It’s not a pleasant feeling. It’s like the french kiss of death.

 

“Midoriya somehow managed to break out of Shinsou’s brainwashing!” Mic yells.

 

“That also means he was also stupid enough to fall for a quirk he already knew about.” Eraserhead, what the fuck? Whose side are you on!  Izuku gives Toshi a nice condescending pat on the head before picking the boy up and swinging him out of bounds like the lanky ragdoll he is.

 

“Shinsou is out of bounds! Midoriya wins!” Izuku helps Toshi up. It’s clear neither of them have hard feelings about it.

 

“Why aren’t you speaking yet?” Toshi narrows his eyes in suspicion.

 

“Cat got my tongue.” He signs back. They leave together, walking down the hallway. Izuku pulls Toshi into the bathroom, stopping at the sink and opening his mouth. Out falls a tongue, and a lot more blood than he thought his mouth could even hold.

 

“Hey Izuku? Can I ask….. What the fuck?” Turning the faucet on, he rinses his mouth out with his hands acting as a cup.

 

“That’s how I got out of your brainwashing. I bit my own tongue off.”

 

“Jesus, where is your self control!”

 

“In a morgue somewhere.”

 

“Ah, another dead joke. Lovely.” They laugh it off and swing by Recovery Girl for the mandated look-over. Aside from Toshi having heavy bruising where Izuku kicked, they’re fine. By time they make it back to their seats, Tokoyami is pushing Yaoyorozu out of bounds. The match is over far quicker than they anticipated. She panicked. He knows that look of self-doubt beginning to fester in her mind. He’ll tell Aizawa about it, if he hasn’t already noticed it himself.

 

Up next is Tetsutetsu Tetsutetsu against Kirishima.

 

“Alright, mighty prophet, how will this one end?”

 

“A tie.” Toshi glares at them. Sero and Ashido turn to him.

 

“Why do you think it’ll be a tie?” Sero asks.

 

“Their quirks are practically the same.”

 

“Yeah, but how do you know it won’t just be a close call?” Ashido chimes in.

 

“I have something on my side called Dramatic Irony.”

 

“When the audience knows something that’s going to happen but the characters don’t?” Sero says, trying to remember the meaning from class. “Midoriya, buddy, we aren’t characters.”

 

“We’re not?” Tell that to the readers! The fight begins and Izuku wishes he could’ve placed bets over it. They match each other's punches perfectly. “Told you so? I believe I certainly did.”

 

“Alright, alright. They get it. You’re some all-knowing god among mortals.” Toshi yawns, rolling his eyes. “You know what comes next, right?” His tone gets apologetic, aluding to one of his next matches.

 

“If I beat Tokoyami, I have to go against Kacchan.” I know.

 

“How’ll that go?”

 

“I think…..” He switches over to sign. “I think no matter what happens, Kacchan’s going to win.” Toshi’s eyes widen in protest. “Hear me out. Whether it's my own fear, possible blackmail, or being disqualified over people seeing burns healing themselves, I know I can’t win.”

 

“You’re saying you’ve already accounted for this?” The disbelief in his tone is evident.

 

“I didn’t know I’d fight him, but yes, some of this is already accounted for.” The fight they watch ends in a tie, and people mentally brace for Kacchan against Uraraka. I don’t get what the big deal is. A fight’s a fight. She’s up there because she’s strong.

 

As Izuku guessed, they go all out. The audience boos Kacchan, not noticing Uraraka’s brilliant plan. When she goes through with it, Kacchan creates a giant blast that renders her attack useless. Upon seeing the attack, Izuku flinches back. A hand on his shoulder moves his attention.

 

“You’re okay.” Toshi reminds. I have to get over my fear to fight him. To fight Hisashi. Think of this as a first step.

 

“Thanks.” The mere thought of Kacchan using his quirk makes him nervous.  “Can you put me to sleep?” He doesn’t look too surprised.

 

“How long?”

 

“I-”

 

Go to sleep and relax, Izuku.

 


 

 

“Izuku, you have to fight Tokoyami.” He’s woken up by Toshi. All he does is blink and nod, getting up and leaving. Honestly, he’s eager to get this fight over with so he can go back to sleep.

 

Tokoyami is a good rival, he sees no way to win against Dark Shadow without lights. It’s a good thing Dark Shadow isn’t what Izuku’s after.

 

Midnight calls the start and Izuku jumps straight up. Dark Shadow is already where he once was. Faster than I thought. Izuku runs along Dark Shadow towards Tokoyami. If I can knock him out, I should be able to win.

 

“Dark Shadow, retreat!” By reeling him in, it causes Izuku to lose his footing. Izuku hits the ground and moves in as Dark Shadow tries to grab him. He latches onto Dark Shadow’s arm and swings around.

 

This cycle of jumping and rolling continues until he feels he can shake it up. Instead of jumping, he rolls and moves on foot. Dark Shadow has already fallen into the repetition and Izuku tackles Tokoyami. His head hits the concrete as Izuku flips him so Dark Shadow can’t easily get out. Now how do I get him out of bounds.

 

“I yield.” What?!

 

“Tokoyami has forfeit!” Midnight calls.

 

“Why?!” Izuku whines, the fight just getting started.

 

“You’ve bested me. I know fate can only be avoided for so long. Also, I think I may be concussed and it is foolish of one to keep going knowing there’s chance of permanent injury.” How is he so wise?

 

“Oh, neat.”

 

Back in his seat, his head leans against Toshi’s shoulder.

 

“Want me to put you back to sleep?”

 

“Yes, please.”


 

 

“Izuku, it’s time.” Izuku’s nudged awake by Toshi. Surprisingly, he does feel more relaxed. He slowly gets up, Toshi grabs his arm. “If not for you, kick his ass for me.” It startles a laugh out of Izuku.

 

“Once I get over the whole fire thing, I’m sure as hell going to spike his greasy ass into the ground.” I know myself. At some point you get so angry you just stop processing the fear. 

 

“I’ll get my camera.”

 

Izuku tries to steel his nerves on the walk down. Remembering that Kacchan is only one person. One incredibly shitty person. I’ve been avoiding him so much  I don’t remember his weak spots! Fine, I’ll collect data the moment my eyes see him. The hairs on the back of his neck stand up the second his feet meet the concrete of the court.

 

“Sure to be an interesting one, Katsuki Bakugou against Izuku Midoriya!” Izuku flashes a toothy grin as he holds a hand out to Kacchan, offering to shake it.

 

“Fuck off. I’m not shaking your hand.”

 

“Why not? I don’t bite, Kacchan .” At that, Kacchan stomps forward and grabs Izuku’s hand, pulling him harshly. Izuku is close enough to hear Kacchan whisper.

 

“I don’t know what you think you are, but I’m going to find out, Mikumo.” He pushes Izuku back as Midnight declares the start. Not that it matters, their fight began the moment their eyes met.

 

“Mikumo’s dead, Kacchan. Stop reminding me.” I know he never believed it. He knows.

 

“Don’t think I didn’t see you predict the events. Do you have them rigged?” Kacchan charges with an explosion. Izuku dodges and snickers at the angry look on Kacchan’s face when the explosion isn’t as big as he planned.

 

“I have an analysis quirk,  Asswipe. It’s how I knew to make you shake my hand.” For emphasis, he waves his hand a bit, flicking off some of Kacchan’s sweat. It wasn’t for shits and giggles, it was to dull your initial attack and throw you off.

 

“Why are you worried about making a fucking getaway after the festival? The fuck’re you planning?!” Kacchan lands a hit on his gut. It’s only pain. Izuku gets the chance to punch him on the left side of his jaw, then lands a kick on his right side. Wait one fucking millisecond.

 

“Kacchan, how do you know that?” For a moment, Kacchan stops his attack and glares at him.

 

“What, you think I can have an explosion based quirk and not learn sign language?! How fucking stupid do you think I am?!” Kacchan launches an attack, an explosion big enough to make Izuku flinch. It’s fine. You can beat him. A little fire never hurt anyone… Wait.. Shit!

 

“I think you’re incredibly stupid.” He dodges and punches Kacchan in the same spot on his jaw. He knees Kacchan in the ribs and all but screams when he gets burned by him.

 

“You still fold like a soggy napkin, you fake piece of shit.”

 

“Well sorry no one like getting burns!” Izuku feels his own anger bubbling up. With that rage, the fear starts to simmer down. 

 

“Get your ass over here, Deku. Let’s relive some childhood memories.”

 

“I’m not-”

 

“Shut the fuck up, Mikumo.” He’s not calling me Deku. Kacchan lands punch after punch backed with firepower. I think he’s beating the actual fear out of me. Izuku freezes up here and there at the sight of fire, until he completely stops responding to it. Kacchan grabs Izuku by the collar of his shirt and starts beating him. Not quite like how students are supposed to fight, but the way he did when they were kids. There’s smoke surrounded them, trapping them in that moment of time completely alone. They can barely even see each other.

 

Kacchan punches Izuku in the eye, putting too much fire behind it. Izuku bites down on his tongue in order to keep the scream of pain in. It’ll go away. Just wait. Izuku’s blind in one eye, feeling suddenly nauseous from the black trying to merge with the rest of the image. It’s like sunglasses but worse. When Izuku tries to block, he realizes he’s become a cyclops of sorts.

 

That’s right. My vision is only coming from the right side but my body still thinks it’s the center of my forehead. He starts shifting all his movements over a bit to compensate. It’s starting to heal.

 

“The fuck…?” Kacchan stops an oncoming strike, taking in the sight of Izuku healing. “What are you?” His voice is soft, genuinely curious.

 

“Aren’t you happy? After all those years of using me as a punching bag I’m finally unbreakable! Isn't this what you wanted, Kacchan? All it took was me watching my fucking mother die and then burn to death myself!” His laugh is bitter as his voice cracks. Izuku is so, so angry at Kacchan. For this, for everything that’s ever happened. “You know what the worst part is? I could’ve actually lived to thank you for kicking my ass that day!”

 

“Deku, what happened to you.” His grip on Izuku’s shirt tightens, and it seems that Kacchan wants to ask questions before he shoots for once. “It was your dad, wasn’t it.” There’s no question about it.

 

“...Yeah.” He's dropped his guard. "I bet you were so happy that quirkless little Mikumo was finally out of your life, weren't you." I want to hurt you. I want to make them stop the fight, Kacchan. "When we burned to death, I remember thinking it wasn't so bad. Not as bad as it looked. Know why? Because being your punching bag gave me a high pain tolerance. You're the reason I didn't suffer like my poor mother." 

 

“Aunty Inko didn’t deserve that, you-” Enough. Izuku swings, hitting the spot in Kacchan's jaw with a sickening crack. Good. It’s finally broken. Now you can shut up for once. Kacchan reels back, stunned a bit. He’s quick on his feet, trying to get back up and win. Izuku kicks him in the ribs feeling another satisfying crack. He keeps kicking, aiming for the hands and ribs. 

 

“I want to break you just like you broke me.” He looks at Kacchan’s crumpled body and sees Hisashi. A foot hanging above his head, Izuku moves to make the final blow, but Kacchan’s too smart for it.

 

He turns his palm to the sky and makes a large blast. Izuku shoots back, pain surging through him as he skids across the pavement,

 

And out of bounds.

 

“Just like always, you win, Kacchan. Aren't you happy?”

Chapter Text

When the smoke clears, the audience sees two things:

 

Izuku is out of bounds,

 

And Kacchan is unconscious on the ground.

 

Techincally speaking, it’s a draw. Both fighter’s met the terms to lose, and no one knows who actually went down first.

 

“We have a draw!” Midnight says, finally breaking the silence. “It seems that this match will be settled by Recovery Girl. Whoever is in the better shape to fight in the final may proceed.” A stretcher takes Kacchan away, and Izuku sits numbly at the ground before being ushered away.

 

Toshi meets him halfway.

 


 

 

Looking at Izuku, Hitoshi can very clearly see the crazed look in his eyes. He doesn’t miss the way his hands shake or how his chest heaves. Hell, Hitoshi can even hear the grinding of his teeth.  There are robots ushering him to Recovery Girl.

 

“I can take him from here.” He calls to the bots.

 

“You request is denied. We must escort Izuku Midoriya to the nurse.” One says in a monotone voice. I wish they were people so I could brainwash them.

 

“What happens if someone needs her more?” For a moment, it seems the robots are looking to each other in question.

 

“We go to the person of top priority.” Channel your inner Izuku. Without another word, Hitoshi drops the ground, pretending to writhe and scream in pain. The robots move to attend to Hitoshi instead, but Hitoshi makes a break for it. He’s so out of it. Rather then yelling at Izuku to run, he moves and throws the boy over his shoulder and runs. Once in one of the waiting rooms, Hitoshi sets Izuku down and shuts the door. By time he turns back around, Izuku’s in fetal position, tears flowing but not yet sobbing.

 

“I wanted to hurt him.” Izuku admits almost too softly to hear. He’s not just talking about the fight. He’s talking grave injuries. Hitoshi recalls what he could see from the audience. The cameras weren’t getting their fight because of all the smoke, but from the upward angle, Hitoshi could see just fine.

 

He was going to kill Bakugou.

 

Now, anyone else might have just thought he was fighting dirty, but to Hitoshi it was clear that was lethal intent. What’s worse is that Aizawa probably saw that too. By time all the smoke cleared, the camera was on Bakugou’s crumpled up body. Hitoshi held his breath when he realized Bakugou wasn’t breathing.

 

As it turns out, it was incredibly shallow. He may hate Bakugou, but he won’t deny how his blood ran cold.

 

“I wanted to hurt him so badly that they’d have to stop the match. I thought that if I was going to lose, I could get something fun from it.” Hitoshi realizes it’s more Oni than Izuku speaking right now. “I wanted to make him pay.”

 

“Izuku, it’s okay.” Izuku’s eyes focus for the first time since being in the room, settling on Hitoshi’s.

 

“Not only did I want to hurt him, but I wanted to literally beat the understanding into him. I wanted him to feel how I felt.”

 

“How you felt when…?” Not the fire, right? That’d be awful.

 

“Every fucking day of my life!” Izuku suddenly shoots up. “I want him to feel like I did before that useless little Deku died!” At this point, he’s shouting. Izuku’s voice breaks as he starts angrily pacing. He’s riled himself back up into his state from the match. “Hell, I’d probably take the shot if a gun was put in my hands!” I’ve never heard that laugh from him.

 

“I think you need to settle down.”

 

“You know what’s funny?!” He’s not actually responding to me. I can’t use my quirk. “I got so fucking furious that I stopped being scared! I thought ‘what’s he gonna do, set me on fire? Been there done that!’. I could- I could…. I could probably kill Hisashi right fuckin’ now without a doubt. I could kill Endeavor if I wanted!” Izuku continues pacing, on his angry rant. By now, he’s already sent a text to Aizawa about his breakdown.

 

“Izuku, I’m telling you to stop before this gets out of hand.” Hitoshi’s scared for his friend.

 

Aizawa comes in shortly after, freezing when his eyes settle on Izuku. He’s listening to what he says.

 


“-Can you fucking imagine how I got here? Because the world thought I was quirkless due to some stupid ass mutation?! There was no way they could’ve guessed I had this quirk! But no! I just had to fucking die and end up in this anger filled hell-hole!” Aizawa clears his throat, getting his attention. “Dad, when did you get here?” Something about his tone is different, lacking the usual bite behind it. In all honesty, it seems his appearance has startled Izuku out of his fit.

 

For good measure, Aizawa uses his capture weapon and restrains Izuku. The boy plops onto the ground in response, officially crying.

 

“Midoriya, you almost killed him.” Aizawa says sternly, ignoring the ‘dad’ comment.

 

“Yeah,” He breathes, shoulders dropping. “I guess I did.”

 

“Get your act together. You’ll have to participate in the final.” The boys look to Aizawa in shock.

 

“I’ll have to what now?” He wipes his tears, gone as quick as they started. Izuku doesn’t actually seem shocked about this. Did he predict this too?!

 

“Kid, you broke his jaw and several of his ribs. Not to mention caused some fractures in his hands and wrists. Midnight said whoever is the less injured of you will go. The cameras didn’t pick up the actions you should be disqualified for.” His voice is softer, understanding that Izuku at least feels some regret for his actions.

 

“I saw Hisashi.” The words make both Aizawa and Hitoshi freeze. He’s devastated by his admission. “I looked at Kacchan and all I saw was Hisashi.”

 

“Are you able to fight Todoroki if he wins? He has a fire quirk.” Aizawa points out.

 

“Shouto’s different. I don’t even know if I could harm a multi-colored hair on his pretty little head.” He sighs.

 

“Jesus, you’re whipped.” Hitoshi snickers, getting a glare. It’s good to see you back to normal.

 

“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” He huffs. Slowly, he gets up and waddles over to Hitoshi, arms still in the capture weapon. Hitoshi takes it as a sign to hug him. Izuku leans into the touch, head on his shoulders. “I’m sorry for losing my McMarbles, Toshi.”

 

“Nex time you decide to lose ‘em, at least respond so I can brainwash you.” Izuku nods, having the decency to look guilty.

 

“I’ll go to Recovery Girl for the check up, then back down for my match.” Izuku yawns, walking out. Aizawa walks after him and closes the door. He and Hitoshi sit down.

 

“Why does he hate Bakugou so much? He almost killed him like it was nothing.” Aizawa asks.

 

“Bakugou bullied Izuku’s cousin when they were kids. Told him to commit suicide and things like that. Beat him up- You name it.”

 

“Why is Midoriya so upset then? More than he would be?”

 

“Imagine someone with a fire quirk killing your family, and then having to deal with another person with a fire quirk hurting family. I’d be pissed off too.” More so if I was actually the person who was hurt. I still have to protect his identity. “All Bakugou does is remind him of everything he doesn’t want to be reminded of. It’s the first time I’ve seen him outwardly express his anger, though.”

 

“So he had a breakdown of sorts.” Aizawa pinches the bridge of his nose. “He’s such a problem for me. I can’t even stop his vigilante work.”

 

“You don’t have the evidence for it.” Hitoshi points out. There’s more to it.

 

“He’s made it clear that he’ll destroy all of Japan if he doesn’t get what he wants. I need time to talk him out of it or get evidence.” They’re still after his arrest but…

 

“Would you actually arrest him?” There’s silence between them, unsettling Hitoshi.

 

“We’d give him a choice. Be in prison, or give up.” It sounds simple enough, but it’s Izuku they’re talking about.

 

“He’d never give up.”

 

“We’d place him with a loving family that’d be able to keep him under control.” Hitoshi gets up and walks to the door.

 

“A place like that doesn’t exist for people like us.”


 

 

Izuku walks down the halls a  bit aimlessly. He’s calmed down quite a bit. Now he just has to see Recovery Girl and get the OK from her. Outside the door, he stops. Flexing his hands and checking the length of his nails, he scratches himself up and forces his quirk to slow down the healing process. It’s been working so far.

 

“Hey Recovery Girl. Sorry it took so long!” Izuku says opening the door.

 

“Dear, come in and sit down. Look at you!” She hobbles over and plants a kiss on the scar on the side of his face. He’s ushered to the beds for time to rest in between matches. Izuku tenses a little when he draws back the curtain and sees Kacchan on the other bed. With a deep breath, he lies down. He’s awake. Someone who’s actually asleep wouldn’t have that kind of breathing. Kacchan’s eyes also move rapidly under his eyelids, but Izuku doesn't think he’s actually in REM sleep.

 

He closes the curtain and hopes he can get away from him soon enough. I know he has questions. I don’t know if I want to bother giving answers.

 

“Deku-”

 

“Shut. The fuck. Up.” He seethes. “In case you haven’t noticed I beat the shit out of you because I lost my cool. Don’t make it happen again.”

 

“Why are you even in here?” Right, he saw my quirk.

 

“Appearances.” Izuku turns to his side, facing away from him. Kacchan takes it as a sign to be quiet for once. Recovery Girl comes over to see how they’re doing. Izuku is obviously completely healed, so all he has to do is act a bit tired. Kacchan’s hands are wrapped up, along with his ribs. It seems like the jaw was the first to heal, because he didn’t hesitate to say some dumb shit.

 

“Midoriya, sweetie, your shirt is in shambles! Here, put a new one on before you leave to go back out!” She tosses a shirt to him and closes the curtain back. Kacchan is straining to sit up. When Izuku takes off his shirt, he sees Kacchan tense out the corner of his eye.

 

“Are those fuckin-”

 

“Autopsy scars, yes. You’re not as stupid as you look. And believe me, you look so fucking stupid, Kacchan.” He puts on the shirt.

 

“You owe me answers.” He says after a while, startling a full laugh from Izuku.

 

“Owe you what? Answers? That’s not how this works.” Kacchan rolls his eyes, probably wanting to use his quirk but completely unable to. “After all the shit I’ve gone through because of you, you ought to be lucky I don’t add you to my list.”

 

“Your list…?” I want to at least scare him. Make him act a bit out of character.

 

“In case you haven’t noticed, I have plans.” Izuku leaves the room after thanking Recovery Girl. His match is up soon. He’s facing off against Shouto, but he already knew that.

 


 

 

Shouto walks down the halls, waiting to complete his final match. He’ll win without using his father’s quirk. There’s only one more obstacle left to face.

 

Midoriya.

 

Something about the boy has been off the past few hours. His eyes calculating, probably using his quirk to find ways to win. If he didn’t know any better, he’d say that he was planning something bigger than everyone here. Shouto saw from the audience how he had beaten Bakugou into the concrete, driven by something other than a desire to win. It was hatred. Something he wish he could do to his father but never having the gall or strength to.

 

Shouto pretended not to notice Aizawa’s disappearance after Midoriya left the stage. I wonder how Izu felt seeing Bakugou using his quirk. I wonder how he felt to watch Midoriya snuff out that flame. He’s walking onto the concrete, ready to shake hands with Midoriya and get this over with. Midoriya does something he didn’t expect.

 

Shouto met his eyes, and Midoriya smiled. It wasn’t a polite one, or a fake one that’s been plastered on. It was real and oh so familiar. He can’t quite place where he’s seen that smile before.

 

“The final round of the Sports Festival will be Shouto Todoroki against Izuku Midoriya.” Present Mic starts. “Midoriya and Bakugou tied, so it was merely a matter of who was injured the least!”

 

“Please stay after for the final ceremony, as well as snacks and drinks provided by UA.” So Aizawa is back. Shouto sees Midoriya look to the booth, another cold look in his eyes.

 

“Are you ready, Midoriya?” He calls, getting the other’s attention. Midoriya gives him another one of those smiles before nodding. What’s he planning?  Looking at Shouto, he sees the cold stare drop. For the life of him, Shouto can’t tell if he’s putting on a mask or taking it off.

 

“START!” Midnight calls, waving a tassel. Shouto wastes no time in stomping a foot and sending out a massive ice attack where Midoriya was. Only... 

 

Midoriya’s gone.

 

Where did he go? Is he out of bounds that easy? He looks, some ice blocking his field of vision. He moves forward, only to stop his train of thought. The hair on the back of his neck rises, feeling like he’s being watched.

 

“You’ve started every attack the exact same way. Why is that?” Midoriya asks from behind Shouto. Before he can attack, Midoriya wraps two arms around his waist and flips him back, slamming Shouto on the ground. His thoughts scramble. How did he get there?! Shouto sends out another wave of ice, this time watching Midoriya dodge entirely.

 

This isn’t possible.

 

“You know what I couldn’t dodge so easily? Your flames.”

 

“I told you. I’m never using his power. What, did my father buy you off?” Midoriya has the nerve to laugh!

 

“The only thing your father could probably pay me to do is kick his ass. Nice try, bud.” Midoriya charges, intentionally aiming for his left side. “I promise Oni wants you to use your flames.” Don’t speak about him.

 

“Don’t talk about things you don’t understand!” Shouto lands a solid hit to Midoriya’s midsection. Something Shouto notices is the lack of hostility Midoriya had when fighting Bakugou. Must have just been personal. Suddenly, the ring feels smaller. He can’t get Midoriya far enough away no matter how ice he throws at him! Analysis is a surprisingly good quirk. Shouto feels regret for underestimating Midoriya. There’s a good reason he’s interning so young.

 

“I understand plenty.” Following the sound of the voice, he looks directly above him, seeing Midoriya falling from the air. He kicked off my ice?!  Worse of all, it looks like he hasn’t even put a scratch on the boy. How does he win? He can’t fight what he can’t see. What would Oni do- “You’re probably thinking something like ‘what would Oni do’, aren’tcha?” What?!  Now, Shouto was getting plain angry with him.

 

“I will beat you without using his flames!” Midoriya drops to the ground in front of him, blinking owlishly.

 

“Then why haven’t you yet?” Shouto doesn’t realize he’s faltered a step back. “You want to be a hero, but can you really be called that when you refuse to focus all of your power into saving people?”

 

“...What.”

 

“Even if you did become number one without using your fire, you’re still surpassing him. I don’t think he cares how you do it, to be honest. What are you going to do? Stop trying to be a hero?”

 

“No!” Shouto slams Midoriya back with a wall of ice. There’s no way he can dodge it. By whatever miracle, Midoriya climbs out of the shards unharmed. What are you?!

 

“You want to be a hero? Would you let someone die if it meant you had to use your flames?”

 

“No.” Midoriya grabs a portion of Shouto’s red hair and flips him, the wind gets knocked out of him. He’s trying to lure me into using my flames. “Why are you doing this?”

 

“Because-” A punch to Shouto’s ribs, “I care about you.” In that moment, he sounds too much like Izu and it infuriates him. Kicking Midoriya off of him, he feels his fist covering with ice as he reels back and punches him. Midoriya, much to his dismay, doesn’t even make a noise. He gets back up and charges. “Use your power, Shouto.” Don’t call me that. Stop talking! Harder than any other time in this round, Shouto stomps. Waves of ice crackle about the concrete, surging to consume Midoriya.

 

“Shut up! Just stop talking!” He screams. There’s a blur of ice, seeing it slam into Midoriya. Midoriya skids back, looking a bit too unpained by the ice digging into his skin. Before he hits the boundary, Midoriya seems to let the ice dig into him. Shouto realizes it with a degree of horror he didn’t know he could feel for the boy. The ice stops, and Midoriya is quite literally stuck to it. His blood trickles down the ice, and Shouto feels stuck where he stands, watching Midoriya pry himself out of the ice with no expression. He clambers over the ice, allowing Shouto to get a full look at him.

 

Shouto’s breath catches, staring at the boy. His shirt is torn and bloodied from the ice. The collar of his shirt is completely gone, letting the cloth hang off from his shoulders. Shouto’s eyes settle on the necklace.

 

“You want to be a hero, Shouto. You’re going to be a great one. Stop hurting yourself and use your fire.” Midoriya- Izu starts walking towards Shouto, smiling. “After all, it’s your quirk, isn’t it?” His voice is soft.

 

Shouto doesn’t register a lot of what happens next. His eyes are fixed on Izu. He vaguely feels heat, watching the reflection of his flames dance around Izu’s emerald eyes. His smile is just as beautiful. What really takes Shouto’s breath away is how Izu doesn’t seem scared at all of the fire.

 

Like the first time they met, he said he wouldn’t be scared of his fire. Sure enough, it’s true.

 

“It’s pretty.” Izu hums, dropping into a fight stance. “But you’ve yet to beat me.” It startles a laugh out of Shouto.

 

They charge.

 


 

 

Shouto doesn’t remember a lot of what happened after that. If he were being honest, he was overwhelmed. Izu was Midoriya all along. It both makes so much sense and none at all.

 

He remembers his flames coming to life. The world became small, no longer existing outside of the ring. It was just them. Izu charged as Shouto did. Then it was over, just like that. When the round ended, Izu was out of bounds, smiling at the sky like an idiot. Shouto was taken to Recovery Girl for his injuries, expecting to also find Izu there.

 

Some time between when the stretcher took Izu away, and when he was supposed to be in Recovery Girl’s office, Izu disappeared. He did say there was something involving my dad happening today. He’s probably busy. Everyone else is wondering why Izu never showed up, or if something happened to him.

 

At some point, Shouto sees Aizawa and Present Mic looking around for him. The only person that seems totally unbothered is Shinsou. He knew, didn’t he?

 

When the finalists are ushered outside for the final ceremony, everyone is shocked to see Izu on the field, walking up to the podium.

 

“Problem solved?” He hears Present Mic whisper to Aizawa.

 

“He probably needed to calm down from his match again. Fire and all.” Right. He’s scared of fire. Just not mine. Shouto pauses his thoughts, wondering when he started referring to it as ‘his’ fire quirk. At the podiums, he smiles at Izu, getting a smile in response.

 

It’s different. It’s not Izu’s usual lopsided grin. This is forced in unnatural.

 

“We shall begin the ceremony!” Midnight begins, gesturing to the podium. Her introduction is cut short by All Might appearing, ready to deliver the medals himself. Bakugou is the only one on the third place podium because Iida had to leave due to a family emergency. Bakugou doesn’t seem as angry as everyone thought. He mutters about how losing like this is still better than winning an ‘empty victory’, whatever that means.

 

“Young Bakugou, you did very well today. I hope we can see you grow and improve.” Very reluctantly, Bakugou lets All Might place the medal around his neck. He moves to Izu, standing on the second place podium.

 

“Young Midoriya, I hope you are alright with this.” He’s required to hug the boy and place the medal on his neck.

 

“Of course All Might! I’d love to hug one of my favorite heroes!” Wait a second. All Might visibly tenses. No one in class knows why, but everyone can tell that Izu isn’t exactly the fondest of All Might. In fact, most would say that Eraserhead’s actually his favorite hero. “You guys did well too! It was fun fighting against you, Todoroki, Bakugou!”

 

“....I’m Shouto.” Shouto quietly corrects, unsure of what’s going on. All Might backs up in time to see Bakugou jump onto Izu’s podium and headbutt him off, still unable to fight with his hands.

 

“And I’m Kacchan. This fuckwad ain’t Deku.” The cameras pick up the assault, the audience watches on in confusion. Aizawa and Mic are already sprinting to Izu as his face distorts.

 

His appearances changes into a man with tanner skin than Izu, hair pulled back tightly into a messy ponytail. He’s in his twenties, and is definitely not Izuku Midoriya.

 

“Alright you got me. I’m not the kid.” Aizawa restrains the man with the capture weapon. As they’re trying to figure out what exactly happened to Izu, the TVs plastered across the stadium flicker into another image.

 

“As many of you may know, my name is Oni. I’m here to talk to you about two things. One: The reason why you should trust my second reason. And two: Why Endeavor is such a bag of dicks. This video was made four days ago.” For good measure, the video shows Izu showing the camera his phone. The date and time as he says. “So If I’m right in all I’m about to say, then congrats Shouto! You’re doing great!” Izu makes a heart with his hands towards the camera.

“Now, let’s talk about his father, Endeavor.”

Chapter Text

Katsuki looks up at the screen, seeing that stupid fuck of a vigilante jabbering off everyone’s ear. For whatever reason, Deku’s place has been stolen by some slobby imposter. That connects Deku to whatever is going on with Oni. Something scratches in the back of Katsuki’s mind, like he knows the answer. It’s just not coming to him yet. Fuck, why can’t he figure this shit out?

 

“You’re all probably wondering why you should trust anything I say about Endeavor? Right? So this video was made four days ago so I’d have time to run around and pull this stunt off today. Make sense? Good! I’m going to talk about the Sport Festival and my predictions for how it’ll go.” The fuck is going on? Why won’t anyone shut him up?  “First, the kids will have to do some sort of obstacle course.” Now that has the audience’s attention. No fucking way. “There’s no possible way you guys can have, let me guess, mines set up on the spot? No. There’s no enough room in that arena for every possible outcome. Besides, those robots have been there all week. No one could round them up that quick and have them all activated.”

 

The crowd murmurs, listening but unsure of where this is going. The guy on the ground grins.

 

“This is going be a wild ride!” Before he can say anything else, Aizawa knocks him out. Why aren’t they stopping him? Why are they just watching?!

 

“Next up is a calvary battle. I know that because the headbands for the points have been printed out the past week.” Oni adds a giggle to the end, boiling Katsuki’s blood. “Last! We! Havetheoneononebattles-” He’s excited, breathing the words into one. “My prediction was that Shouto would come in first. Now, for the other people, I had issues. I knew Tenya Iida will come in third. The issue lies between Katsuki Bakugou and Izuku Midoriya. Without a doubt, Bakugou won the round, but it’ll probably be an issue of him being too injured to continue!”

 

“Oh my god.” Present Mic whispers.

 

“I bet, to my dissapointment, that Izuku Midoriya’s imposter has been realized!” The crowd gets loud a moment, looking onto the field. “I bet Eraserhead’s not happy about his prize intern being taken away from him!” His what? Aizawa goes rigid at the reveal, glaring at the screen. “Well, it was for insurance, mostly. Here, I’ll have my real-time editor cut to the video feed of Midoriya!” The footage changes to grey walls, low lighting. Deku’s on the ground, hands and wrists bound up, screaming through a bandana in his mouth furiously.   Why the fuck did they take him?  Something’s screaming at Katsuki in his mind. Some pieces he has to put together but just can’t.

 

What Katsuki does notice is fairly interesting. Half and Half is looking at the screen like a dumb lovesick fuck. Katsuki recalls him behind referred to strictly as Shouto by Oni. That, and the fact that this is going to be an attack on his father. If they seem gross as hell and all lovey dovey, then that means whatever bullshit Oni’s about to spew about Endeavor could very well be true.

 

It’s not just that.

Katsuki knows it’s true. He had been there, hiding behind the corner spying on them. He heard the shit his dad put his family through. It seems like Oni is just going to bring everything to light. Now that he thinks about it, he does recall Half and Half talking about Deku being an intern, and that Half and Half is friends with Oni.

 

Did… Did his match against Deku throw him off that badly?

 

Fuck! That’s where Deku is! Katsuki recognizes the walls being part of the tunnels they were in.

 

“I took him not just ‘cause he’s Eraserhead intern, but for two reasons! One: He’s the only finalist with nonphysical quirk, and two: Because I’m after his uncle, Hisashi Midoriya.” The crowd freezes. Katsuki swears he sees Present Mic’s and Aizawa’s faces pale a bit. That doesn’t make any fucking sense. Deku admitted to being Mikumo. He’s not Deku’s uncle. Why would Oni be after….. Oh my fucking god. Without noticing at first, Katsuki takes off in a dead sprint, not bothering to listen to what those yell to him.

 

Izuku Midoriya is Mikumo Midoriya, who is Oni. How much more obvious could it have been? Jesus, Katsuki felt dense. He sprints despite his pain, before slowing down in the tunnels. He searches for any sort of life when he hears something. Upon sneaking closer he hears…..

 

Is that moaning?

 

Sure enough, it is! Katsuki feels both pissed off and disgusted by the sounds, promptly turning on his heel to search the other tunnels.

 

What would that stupid fucking conniving Deku do? He’s seen some of Oni’s more elaborate plans, and now he’s only more cautious of his surroundings. Wait one fucking second. The moaning stopped. Why? Katsuki was sure he didn’t make any sound. Without a second thought, he turns back around and rushes back to where he heard it. When he turns the corner, he’s facing down the barrel of a gun.

 

Kacchan, didn’t I tell you not to make my list?” Some freak in a purple mask is on the ground with a laptop in lap, probably being the ‘real time editor’ that was mentioned before. That’s Catspiracy, which means everything on the screens are probably being broadcasted globally.  He’s starting something bigger than all of us. There’s a look in Deku’s eyes. He’s tired.

 

“The fuck are you pointing a gun at me for?!” Better yet, where the hell did he even get one?

 

“You should’ve stayed your nosey ass back on the podium, and you wouldn’t be asking me some dumb shit right now.”

 

Looking at Deku, Katsuki has a vision. No, it’s more of a memory being triggered. He looks up and instead of a gun and unwavering determination, he sees something else entirely. He sees Deku at a young age, clothing wet and hair messy. No scars whatsoever on the boy. ‘ Are you okay, Kacchan? Did you hit your head?’ Deku asks, extending a hand to Katsuki. He wants to reach out for the first time in his life and just grab that kid’s stupid fucking hand. Except, Katsuki can’t. He can’t do anything. He’s pulled back into reality by the reminder that his hands are bandaged up thoroughly. His eyes focus, and he sees it’s not a helping hand that was extended to him. It’s just a gun. Nothing more.

 

 

“I said are you okay, Kacchan? Did you hit your head or some shit? Eat a brain tumor for breakfast?” Deku waves the gun at him a bit for emphasis. “Go away. Let me get my things done.” Deku dismisses him, going back to work. How hilarious is that? Deku dismisses him! No one shoos Katsuki fucking Bakugou away like that.

 

“I have no clue who the fuck you are anymore, but I can’t let you run around and terrorize a whole country for your sick needs.” Katsuki takes a step forward before being deafened. A bullet is deliberately aimed into his thigh. It doesn’t hurt as badly as he’s heard getting shot does. He shot me without a second thought. Am I really that bad?

 

“In case you haven’t noticed yet, it wasn’t an actual bullet I shot you with. Trust me, being shot hurts a lot more than that.” He was shot?  “That was actually a tranq.” Katsuki was feeling pretty dizzy, even without it being mentioned. He drops to his knees, careful not to fuck up his arms any more.  Deku gives him the gift of pushing Katsuki back so he lands on his ass rather than his arms.

 

“What the fuck happened to you? The Deku I knew never swore, didn’t go swinging around fuckin’ guns. He didn’t run the fuck around causing country-wide upset!” Deku laughs. Katsuki wishes he could say he’s heard a genuine laugh from Deku before. Did I cause this?  He remembers during the fight, Deku said Katsuki broke him.

 

“I did say that Mikumo’s dead, Kacchan.” One thing isn’t adding up.

 

“Aizawa knows…” He’s really starting to feel foggy.

 

“Obviously. He hasn’t done anything because he technically only has his word.” Deku waltz up to Katsuki, raises the butt of the gun, and brings it down hard.

 


 

 

Izuku and Toshi are leaving Kacchan’s body. He’ll wake up and probably murder everything in his path. That’s fine and dandy so long as they’re not around for it.

 

“Those moans were almost too convincing, Toshi. You have too much power.” Izuku teases, nodding to the voice changer in Toshi’s pocket.

 

“I know and I hated every second of that. You could have had me make literally any other noise.”

 

“No! No! You had to be believable and weird enough for Kacchan to say nope and fuck off.” He did alarmingly well.

 

“It’s a good thing you accounted for your double being an idiot.” Toshi chuckles, changing the subject entirely. Yeah, it is. I specifically told the guy to remain silent. Be pretty, smile and nod, blow kisses. Whatever!

 

“Yeah.” At this point, they’re running to their next location for the live portion of the video. Toshi has it playing on his laptop to keep track of it.

 

“Now that you all know I’m smart enough to predict the festival and have a precious student of yours kidnapped-” Oni leans into the camera, eyes squinting gleefully. “The real fun begins! So as many of you know, I fucking hate Endeavor! Lots of ya do, right? But now I can give everyone valid reasons to take him out.” He makes a dramatic cutting motion across his throat. “I’m guessing by now a lot of you are looking to Shouto right now with questions. How could this crazed individual do this? His father! Ah! Oh no! Well, have you fucks ever considered he hates his father? That all of Endeavor’s family hates him? No? Well now you have.”

 

“Who knew you were one for dramatics.” Izuku can tell that Toshi’s rolling his eyes behind the mask. Hopefully, Toshi’s double hasn’t given anything away yet. “Where the hell did you get that gun, anyways?”

 

“I had a week of prep time. I could probably take over the world in two. Don’t ask.” He teases, getting slapped in the back of the head. They have it set up so that Izuku’s walking with his hands tied. Toshi is carrying the laptop in one hand, with a gun pointed at Izuku in the other. Hopefully you have awful aim and can’t account for recoil.

 

“-I want to state it now that I am not going to kill Endeavor, as much as I’d love to. Nope! You know what they say, if you can’t beat your enemies, tie him to a flagpole in his underwear!.... Wait, that’s not the phrase? Oh dear.” Toshi cuts the video to the live feed of Endeavor screaming, tied up with everything except underwear gone.

 

“Did you shoot Endeavor to get this?” Toshi deadpans.

 

“It was so satisfying. You should try it some time.” Knocking him out was surprisingly easy. His focus was on Shouto the entire time. 

 

“Endeavor is on display because I want to out him as a child abusing fuck. Don’t worry, I’ve been given permission by dear Shouto to do whatever I think is needed. Hooooo BOY is this needed! Endeavor doesn’t care for his family. Just a successor.” Oni’s voice gets very quiet, suddenly serious. The way he phrased things before was solely to get people to distinguish between his jokes and facts. “He doesn’t know how to love anyone other than himself. He abuses Shouto in order to ‘train’ him. How sick is that? What’s worse is that Shouto wasn’t the first. Shouto has an older brother named Touya Todoroki. Endeavor pushed him too hard and he snapped.” There’s a long period of silence. I already told Shouto this, but it still hurt me to say it out loud. “Touya Todoroki became a villain. I have met him first hand. He wants Endeavor to be punished just as badly as we do. A hero, a vigilante, and a villain want to bring one man to justice. I’m just being the middleman here, folks.”

 

Toshi and Izuku are coming up to the area where Endeavor’s being held. Now, it becomes more life threatening for them.

 

“Toshi, you know what happens from here?” He kept Toshi in the dark for most of this, in case he was questioned by Tsuki.

 

“You somehow managed to get a truck shipment of quirk suppressants, and have been pumping them through every vent, duct, and fan near Endeavor?”

 

“Ding ding ding! Anyone within a mile radius of Endeavor is quirkless. Including us.” Toshi snorts a bit.

 

“I think we have more practice surviving without quirks.”

 

“You’re so smart.” He jumps up to pat the boy on his head, pleased when Toshi leans down a bit to help with the height difference. “That means you’re going to be extra careful. If someone so much as touches a hair on your head, I will murder the planet.”

 

“Got it, got it.” He whines like Izuku’s an overbearing parent. “My job is just to keep the camera on you. Now get changed.” He nods to a bag in the alley, turning around to offer Izuku some privacy. He changes into his suit and gets his bo staff out just in case. That week was enough to give himself all sorts of upgrades. Once ready, he leads Toshi up to the roof where the flagpole is. If any hero wants to stop him, they have to be better than Izuku at fighting quirkless.

 

“Camera cutting to you in three… two….one!”

 

“Well, well! Now it’s live! We have both the fixed camera you previously saw Endeavor on, and now my editor is a cameraman for me! Say hi!” Toshi turns the camera on himself, giving a small wave. “Catspiracy better get a paycheck for this footage.” Izuku jokes.

 

“In about two minutes, I’ll drop the location. First hero to take me down gets to decide what my punishment is.” He talks through the two minutes, filling the silence entirely. He sees some lower rank hero with a glass quirk. He can turn his body into any glass form he wants. The hero tries to use his quirk, only to make a small face of horror at Izuku. “Oh, did I forget to mention?”

 

“Mention what.” Well, it looks like Endeavor's speaking again. He’s squirming against the flagpole, trying to get free.  

 

“Everyone within a mile radius of you is quirkless. You, being the epicenter, of where the quirk suppressants are.” I really did want to deal with your fire. This was a good compromise. 

 

“Not to mention the heroes have to put up with the side effects of quirk suppressants.” Toshi calls from out of frame.  

 

“Right!”

 

“That means you too.” Endeavor sneers. Oni flips him off.

 

“Wow, aren’t you the smartest? No shit it means me.” He spits back. In a few punches, he knocks out the glass hero. “Endeavor, you are the antithesis to my BDE.”

 

“BDE?”

 

“Big dick energy, you dumbass.” Izuku laughs, fighting off more heroes that show up. Mt. Lady was unfortunately easy to take down as well. Every hero that shows up is taken out. Death arms put up a good fight, but bringing his bo staff down on his head was a piece of cake. Endeavor screams at the heroes to be less pathetic, somehow unaware that this is a video against him. He doesn’t make it better for himself at all. At some point, a hero decides that going for Toshi was a good idea.

 

Izuku is there before he can even bring a foot up to kick Toshi. He snaps the hero’s arm and pins him face down.

 

“This is a warning. Touch my cameraman and you’re dead where you stand.” This is the first time Oni has ever actually threatened to kill someone. He sees people freeze a bit, sure that he’s serious. “It won’t be a peaceful one.”

 

Kamui woods did very well, being skilled in combat must have been a high priority for him. It’s only a matter of time until-

 

Scarves fly forward, izuku barely has time to dodge. On the rooftop next to them is a very angry Eraserhead.

 

“Oni, go home.” He says softly.

 

“Boo.” He giggles, dodging Eraserhead's movements. He’s almost too caught up in the fight to notice a hero making another swipe at Toshi. Without taking his eyes off Eraserhead, he reaches and draws his gun, firing it off without hesitation. The heroes go quiet as their comrade drops to the ground. “That was your second warning. There will be no third. That was a tranq.” He puts the gun away, seeing red seeping through the hero’s shoulder. If Eraser hadn’t knocked him off balance, it would have been his head. Okay, so it wasn’t exactly a warning. I can’t let them know I misaimed.

 

“You won’t have the chance to pull that dumb shit again.” Eraserhead yells, probably furious that he’s underground and being broadcasted globally. He’s outlasted all the other’s here, because he practically fights quirkless.

 

“Let me ask.” Izuku yells, getting their attention. “Why did you all come up here to support and fight for a child abuser?” Everyone freezes, like they don’t know. Even Eraserhead falters.

 

“He’s a hero.” The Glass Hero eventually says.

 

“Would you look his family in the eyes and say that to them?” Izuku asks, slipping more into Oni. The heroes shake their heads. “Then he’s no hero of mine.” A scarf grabs his ankle and flips him, slamming him on the ground. My nose is broken.

 

“I don’t give a fuck about Endeavor.” Eraserhead pins his arm behind his back. “I only care about getting you into custody.” He's going to break it. 

 

“Eraser, would you really snap the arm of a child?” Oni knows this will make Eraserhead hesitate. He does, for a split second.

 

“A child?” Mt. Lady asks softly.

 

“That’s not possible. You can’t be a child-”

 

“Why? Because I kicked your collective ass?”

 

“C’mon, Oni.” Eraserhead hauls him to his feet. I’m getting too drowsy from the quirk suppressants. He’s been here the shortest amount of time. He’s the best fighter right now. He allows himself to be led away. It’s fine. I’ve made my point. A few, actually.

 

“Catsipiracy, follow. Cut the feed. Goodnight, world. Hopefully you’ll do something about that flaming piece of shit over there. Who knows, maybe I’ll calm down if you do.” The camera turns off. Someone takes a step to stop Toshi, but stops upon looking at Oni.

 

Once out of the area, Eraserhead turns to them.

 

“Shinsou, go home.” He sounds exhausted.

 

“He faces no charges, got it?” Izuku warns. He can tell that Eraserhead is rolling his eyes underneath his goggles.

 

“Yes. We’re aware that you have him untouchable.” Toshi nods once before taking off.

 

“Make sure no one tails you!” Izuku calls after him, getting a thumbs up in response. “So, what are you going to do to me, Eraser?” He tries. So far the only injuries he’s sustaining are a broken nose and sprained ankle. That, and some pretty extensive bruising.

 

“I’m taking you down to the station.” Like hell you are. Not in costume. “They need to speak with you anyways.”

 

“Speak with Oni?”

 

“No, Midoriya.” Well, seeing as I’m a victim in this situation, it’s only natural they want my side of the story.

 

“What happens if I get brought in like this?” Eraserhead takes off his goggles, giving Izuku an unreadable look. He sighs.

 

“We were thinking of giving you choices regarding what comes next. You’re a kid. We could still have you face jail time for causing this level of upset in the country. Or, you give up vigilantism entirely and we place you with a nice family who’ll take care of you.” Izuku pauses in his steps, unsure of how to process those words. I can’t stop. I’d get them all killed. I can’t let another family be destroyed because of me. Izuku, whether he knows it or not, blames himself for not realizing he had a quirk sooner. After all, it was quirklessness that led him here. “...Midoriya?” Aizawa stops, kneeling down to level with Izuku a bit better. He rests a hand on his shoulder.

 

“What.” If he talks any more, he might cry.

 

“Don’t you want a family?” There’s uncertainty in his voice, like he already knows the answer.

 

“I already had one.” Without thinking, Izuku uses his elbow and slams it into Aizawa’s chest. He was going to aim for the face, but he doesn’t know if the injuries from USJ are still affecting him. Aizawa hits the ground, and by time he gets up, Izuku’s gone.


 

 

Naomasa reviews all the footage from Oni’s latest stunt. Trying to find any evidence that him and Midoriya are the same person. None. Taking himself captive and showing it makes the public think he’s not Oni. After all, why would he kidnap himself? Not to mention he made his goals public. He outright said Midoriya was only taken because he’s after the kid’s uncle. His uncle. This is going to be a long headache.

 

Well, Naomasa still has to question Midoriya about the incident. Maybe he can get one slip up that’ll be enough evidence to place suspicion on him. Is the Endeavor stunt to take pressure off his motive of getting Hisashi? To take pressure off of finding his identity?  It may as well be, considering that Endeavor is under fire by every news source one can name. Not that Naomasa minds, if Endeavor truly is a child abuser. The question is, how did Oni come to find all that out? Regarding the Endeavor case, they’ll have to speak with Shouto. Hopefully he’ll be willing to talk about any involvement he has with Oni. There’s a ruckus coming from outside Naomasa’s office. He gets up to investigate, but his door swings open.

 

“Hey, Tsuki.” Midoriya strolls in, wearing the same clothes it showed he was kidnapped in. By now, the entire stunt is over. Everyone is going about the rest of their day with Endeavor and Oni in the back of their minds.

 

He’s planted a seed. It’s the start of something big.

 

“Midoriya.” He greets tiredly, gesturing to the chair across his desk. Technically, he can’t interrogate Midoriya, so there’s no need to haul him into the room. He can question from his office. That’s right, cameras being in the office isn’t public knowledge. He can win! Midoriya all but throws himself into the chair, clearly exhausted. The quirk suppressants took a toll on him. “You seem tired, why is that?”

 

“Kidnappings take a lot of energy.” True. He’s making it sound like his kidnapping is the topic, but he really means Endeavor’s kidnapping.

 

“I’m going to keep asking questions, is that alright with you?” He nods. “Who kidnapped you.”

 

“Catspiracy.” True.

 

“Who else was there?”

 

“It was just us two.” True. At this rate, he won’t get any evidence. He’s technically not lying.

 

“Do you know why you and Endeavor were targeted?”

 

“I was targeted because I’m related to Hisashi. Endeavor was targeted because he’s abusive.” True. So Endeavor actually is an abuser. It wasn’t just a story to keep the heat off of him.

 

“Why would Oni out Endeavor? Why was it so personal?”

 

“Oni has an abusive fire user in the family. He probably felt like he needed to protect them, because no one was there to protect him.” That’s true. He just admitted that Oni is related to them! This is great! This might fall in line with one theory I’ve had. That Mikumo isn’t actually dead. That Mikumo is Izuku’s real name. It makes the reason why he’s after Hisashi a lot more plausible. 

 

“Is your name Izuku Midoriya?” Midoriya blinks at him a moment.

 

“Yes.” False. Midoriya is grinding his teeth. Finally getting a question he has to lie about.

 

“Are you Mikumo Midoriya?” At the question, he tenses. Soon enough, a sadness washes over his eyes. He forces the tension from his shoulders.

 

“Mikumo’s dead.”

 

True.

Chapter Text

Naomasa felt ready to have All Might himself punch him in the face. Midoriya not being Mikumo just caused him to age fifty years in the span of two seconds.

 

“Midoriya, we need a real name for you. I know Izuku isn’t it.” Midoriya cocks his head to the side, sporting a mad grin.

 

“Tsuki, c’mon. You calling me fake?”

 

“Yes, actually.” Technically, I’m only supposed to ask for the information regarding today’s incident. Naomasa takes a deep breath. “Another matter, not really relevant.” He hates the satisfied smirk it gives Midoriya.

 

“Right, we have to talk about today.”

 

“How are you feeling, generally speaking?” Routine, routine.

 

“You’ve already asked this. Tired. Really shaken up.” True. Wait, why is he shaken up if he was the one to orchestrate it?

 

“Why’s that?”

 

“I was kidnapped, then had to experience something that was aimed to take down the number 2 hero. Not to mention the Sports Festival itself.” True. He’s getting too good at finding ways around my quirk. We're just restating what we already know at this point. Sometimes repeating questions can help catch a slip up in a person's story. Midoriya was quick to call me out on it, though. 

 

“I see.”

 

They finish up the questions, leaving Naomasa more frustrated than he thought he could be. Midoriya just keeps dancing around his quirk, and technically it’s allowed. When Midoriya gets up to leave, he pauses with a hand hovering over the doorknob.

 

“I just want you to know that all footage from this meeting’s already corrupted.”

 

“How did you know there’s cameras in here?”

 

“Come on, Tsuki! How could there not be?! Anyways, I want to shower. I feel pretty fucking gross.” True.

 

With that, he’s gone.

 


 

Shouta stands at the sight of Oni’s stunt, watching as teams deactivate machines that pump out quirk suppressants and cart them off as evidence. This kid planned all this shit in a week? He’s dangerous when given the right amount of prep time. For a while, Shouta was almost content in just keeping the kid in check, making sure he’s not breaking any laws that he can’t help with. They know that his vigilantism doesn't actually use a quirk to fight or subdue criminals. Midoriya walks a very fine line with the law. 

 

Today, he almost killed someone twice. Bakugou and Midoriya have always had a weird relationship, which now he’ll have to fully look into. Other than that, he shot at one of the heroes without a moment of hesitation. Shouta saw his eyes. He was aiming to kill. He wonders if Midoriya will take him up on the instruction to stay with them tonight anyways.

 

He sends a quick text to Hizashi, asking him to make some extra food just in case.

 

Oni:

I’m sorry for punching you. I panicked.

 

Eraserhead:

Yeah, I figured. What am I going to do with you? You have to let us help you.

 

Oni:

Is it really help, though? All I see are limitations to my freedom.

 

Eraserhead:

Don’t start getting edgy. You need to cut this out and focus on your studies. What’s the big deal if you’re going to be a hero in a few years?

 

Oni:

...I have a feeling that after today, I don’t have a few years.

 

Shouta freezes, staring at Midoriya’s message. What did he mean by that? Hoping it’s just his weird, absurdly niche sense of humor, he puts his phone away.

 

His phone rings the moment he goes back into his pocket.

 

“Hello?” He answers.

 

“Eraserhead, I had a theory.” He sounds annoyed. “It was that Mikumo is Midoriya’s real name. It makes sense, when you consider the motives and all.”

 

“Not to mention his healing.” Shouta adds, liking the sound of this theory. “Wait, you said you had a theory? What happened?”

 

“I asked if he was Mikumo. Bluntly. He said no and my quirk registered it as true.”

 

“What exactly did he give as an answer?”

 

“‘Mikumo’s dead.’” Well, the theory could still be true. Midoriya could still have identity problems.

 

“Okay.” At this point, Shouta is slinking away from the scene, avoiding the reporters slowly showing up. He’s heading back to his house. “Are you going to launch an investigation against Endeavor?”

 

“We have to, at this point. Whether it’s to put the public at ease, or because Oni brought up legitimate evidence, there’s no reason we shouldn’t.” There’s a pause. “Who knows, maybe Oni’ll calm down a bit if Endeavor was taken out.” That’d change the country’s balance. All it’d take was a villain who could account for this and act accordingly.

 

“Hopefully.”

 

"Eraserhead, is the kid staying with you?”

 

“I told him to come back to my house tonight. I don’t know where his apartment is, so I wouldn’t be able to get him.”

 

“It’s Mikumo’s old place. I’ll send you an address.” Might as well check the place out first.

 

“Alright, heading there now. Don’t give back up unless I give the word.” Tsukauchi laughs on the other line.

 

“Stay safe.” He hangs up.

 

Eraserhead:

Is Midoriya there?

 

Hizashi:

No. Shinsou is, though.

 

Eraserhead:

Alright. I’m going to find Midoriya and make him stay the night. Keep Shinsou occupied please.

 

Hizashi:

Of course, Shouta. Stay safe.

 

Eraserhead:

You too.

 

The apartment is in a fairly residential area. Nothing looks out of the ordinary. Knowing Oni, he probably has some sort of trap on the front door. Window it is. Shouta quietly slides the glass up, surprised that the window’s unlocked. Even more surprising, is that there’s no gun pointed at him. Once inside, he finds himself in a bedroom. It’s badly damaged, with almost no signs of life. Must have been the parent’s room. Something catches his eye on the way to the door.

 

A small pot of flowers in a certain spot on the carpet. Shouta’s stomach sinks as he slowly comes to the realization of it being a gravesite for someone. Inko died there. The door opens, and Shouta winces and freezes as the door squeaks with his every move. Sound filters through the crack in the door.

 

Water running?

 

He moves out into the hallway, taking in all of the damage around the apartment. Everything smells burnt, after the years that’s passed. It saddens him, in a weird way. The light’s on down the hall, the source of the water. Why is the door open? He can’t hear any signs of life. No change in the sound of the water, indicating that nothing’s moving beneath it. He pulls his goggles back up over his eyes, feeling like he’s walking into a trap.

 

Silently, Shouta moves down towards the bathroom, peeking in. With a small sigh of relief, he walks in. Midoriya sits in the bathtub with no shirt on, but pants. He’s soundly asleep.

 

Shouta reaches out to feel the water coming from the shower, wincing at how it’s ice cold. He kneels next to the tub to get a good look at Midoriya’s face. His eyes and nose are red. From the cold or possibly crying, he can’t tell. Must be the suppressants. Otherwise, he probably would’ve woken up. With the life he appears to have led, there’s no way he’s not a light sleeper.

 

Shouta turns the shower off and lifts Midoriya out of the tub. There’s another bedroom, labeled ‘Mikumo’ on an All Might plaque. Inside the room almost breaks Shouta’s heart. He places Midoriya down on the bed. It’s all hero merch, mostly All Might. There’s scattered notebooks about the room labeled ‘Hero analysis’. Curious, Shouta goes around the room and collects the books. It seems like the fire didn’t spread far enough to ruin this room. Opening one, he sees quite a bit of information logged on various heroes.

 

Midoriya startles Shouta when he stirs, still asleep. The kid has a hand up holding his necklace like a lifeline. It looks like a wedding ring. Looking at the ring brings his eyes to another concern. The large y-shaped scar on Midoriya. Where had he gotten it from? It looks like it’s from an autopsy. That also goes in line with the Mikumo theory.

 

But why is there a scar? The fact that Midoriya has scars at all confuses Shouta. He’s seen Midoriya get injured countless times and he heals without even a scab. Hell, the kid lost the ability to use his quirk and still doesn’t have scarring from the gunshots or loss of his hand.

 

Maybe it’s tied to something traumatic.

 

Izuku Midoriya remains a mystery to all. That doesn’t mean he’ll remain that way forever. Shouta knows figuring this out is key to putting an end to his vigilantism.

 

He grabs an old All Might backpack from the ground and puts the books into it, as well as spare clothes for Midoriya. Most of the clothes are old and falling apart, or too small in general. He must have been wearing these out for years with no intention of buying new ones. Am I going to have to get him new clothes? Put a dent in my wallet for this dumbass? Shouta sighs. Of course he is. He has to.

 

He managed to even get a shirt and jacket on Midoriya without waking him up. Today definitely took a toll on him.

 

Shouta carries Midoriya to the train station, with his backpack on Shouta’s back. It might have been difficult to carry Midoriya all that way, but he’s severely underweight. How could he fight so well but weigh so little?  Shouta’s always been aware that he’s short, but he thought it was just genetics. Now he’s starting to think his growth was severely stunted. Great, stunted both physically and emotionally. God damned problem child.

 

On the train, people recognize Midoriya from the Sports Festival, especially since he plastered his own face all over the world as a kidnapping victim. A woman next to him smiles at the sight of him sitting with Midoriya in his arms.

 

“You should be very proud of your son, he did well today.” She pats Shouta on the shoulder, giving Midoriya a gentle smile as he sleeps.

 

“He’s not act-”

 

“Oh look at him!” Another person speaks up. “He must be so tired from everything that happened today. My son would never let me carry him like that. It’s nice to see a strong father and son bond.” The man tips his hat at Shouta.

 

“This kid isn’t-”

 

“Make sure you raise him to be a great hero, ya hear?” An old woman all but demands. Shouta sighs, having to accept his fate. The strangers won’t even let him say that Midoriya isn’t his son.

 

“I will.” He mumbles, satisfying everyone there. He spends the rest of the train ride ignoring their comments and declarations of ‘aw, how cute’. Me? Being a parent? That’s not practical. Illogical. Even Hizashi shares the sentiment. They can’t raise a child together knowing they’d be at constant risk. It’d just be a weakness to them, and unfair to their child. They’d love a kid, sure, but how do you explain to a child that they're a hindrance? You can’t, so they won’t.

 

It disturbs Shouta that his arms aren’t tired from carrying Midoriya by time he walks home. Hizashi opens the door, a small grin on his face as he brings up his camera and snaps a picture of them. Without permission!  Inside, he sets him down on the couch and goes to shower and change out of his hero gear. In the shower, he thinks about if the new locks on the windows will prove more effective.

 

Shouta wanders back into the living room, lazily putting his hair up in a bun. He’s met by a cold glare.

 

“Who the fuck told you where I live? Midoriya seethes at him, looking the direct opposite of the way he peacefully slept.

 

“Tsukauchi looked up where Mikumo lived.”

 

“...How did you enter?” Why does that matter?  Shouta sees Shinsou tense a bit behind Midoriya, most likely knowing the reason behind the question.

 

“The window to Inko’s room-” Midoriya’s up and leaping over the couch towards Shouta. He’s limping. He grabs Shouta’s capture weapon and tackles him, tightening the scarf to choke him. Shouta doesn’t move.

 

“Step foot in that room again and you die.” He’s serious. When the hell did he start giving out death threats?

 

“Noted.” Shouta says, waiting for Midoriya to get off of him.

 

“You’re hurt.” Shinsou calls, walking over and lifting Midoriya off of Shouta.

 

“...My quirk isn’t back yet. Tired.” He mumbles, letting himself be led back to the couch. Looks like his ankle is sprained. Shinsou sits him down and comes back to Shouta. He nods to the stairs, meaning he probably wants to talk privately. Shouta nods, wondering why Midoriya blew up like that.

 

In Shinsou’s room, they’re free to talk. Hizashi is downstairs to make sure Midoriya doesn’t vanish.

 

“Did you actually go inside his aunt’s room?” Shinsou asks, tense.

 

“Yeah, why?”

 

“No one’s allowed in there. Even I’m not allowed. Izuku only goes in there to water the shrine. Nothing else.” I broke a rule I wasn’t aware of.

 

“So she did die there?”

 

“Yeah. The flowers are in place of where she was.” He looks to the floor with a sad expression.

 

“What’s the story behind his necklace?” Might as well ask now, get whatever information I can.

 

“It’s her wedding ring.” Despite hating Hisashi? That doesn’t make sense. “He was there when they died. The ring was how he identified her body.” So he keeps it with him at all time?

 

“He was there when they died? What happened?” Shinsou looks to Shouta, unsure if he should share the story or not.

 

“Izuku came over after Mikumo got out of school, and I guess when he opened the door everything was on fire. Mikumo was looking around for his mom, when they found her, she was already dead. They decided to get out while they could. Mikumo went down. Izuku paused just long enough for the ceiling to collapse on him.”

 

“Paramedics got him out, right? He survived with his quirk?” Shouta notices Shinsou looks a bit nauseous recalling his friend’s story.

 

“No. That scar over his eye is from the ceiling. It pinned him down but somehow didn’t kill him.” He trails off a bit, not wanting to be the one to say what comes next.

 

“He burned to death.” Shinsou nods. “His quirk kicked in, though, right? He didn’t actually die?”

 

“He-” The door swings open, startling them. Midoriya wanders in and sits, laying his head against Shinsou’s shoulder.

 

“I heard everything.” He hums, clearly out of it. “I did die. My autopsy report said so.” That’s where that scar is from. “That’s how I found out I wasn’t quirkless.” Shouta goes still, realizing with horror that Midoriya had to burn to death in order to feel useful in life. ”You know,” His voice suddenly lifts, as if thinking of a funny joke. “That was also the day All Might told me I couldn’t be a hero!” He laughs. Back to back tragedies led him here, huh?

 

“Midoriya…” His heart hurts.

 

“I don’t want your pity. If you want to help me, you’ll stand down. I only let Shinsou tell you that stuff about me so you can understand why Hisashi needs to pay. So you can understand why I’m broken.”

 

“You’re not broken.” Shouta practically snaps with a firm tone, trying to get it through his thick skull. “You just needed guidance. Why didn’t you go home to your parents after all this?” An expression clouds over Midoriya’s eyes.

 

“If Hisashi knew I was alive, no one would be safe. I hid and laid low.” Until today. Something clicks in Shouta’s mind. That’s why he said he doesn’t have many years left. His face was all over the world today.

 

“Will you go back to your parents if they contact you?” Shouta asks, careful to watch his reaction. Midoriya signs something to Shinsou, who leaves the room shortly after, letting Shouta and Midoriya speak alone.

 

“No. No one besides Hisashi will look for me. I promise you that.”

 

“That’s a lie.”

 

“Really? Who’s been looking for me? Huh?!” His eyes go wild a moment, before he takes a deep breath. He looks to Shouta with a mournful smile. “No one’s ever looked for me, Eraserhead.”  

 

“That’s not true. I’ve been looking for you this whole time.” Midoriya’s smile drops, eyes clearly watering. He gets up and moves to the door. “Vigilante or not, I’ll keep searching for you if you leave.”

 

“Thanks, Dad. it makes me feel a bit bad about lying to you.” What?

 

“About what?” Midoriya turns to meet Shouta’s eyes with a tired expression. He swings the door open.

 

“Almost everything.” Without waiting for a response, Midoriya leaves.

 

Shouta gets the distinct feeling that more than one door has just shut in his face.

Chapter Text

Izuku sits down in ‘his’ room, as they call it. He curls in on himself, laying under the blanket. His phone is getting blown up from classmates. Among them is Shouto. What do I say to him?  Izuku wonders if Shouto would rather be friends with Oni, not Izuku. Not that it really matters. His friendship with Shouto might come to an end soon, if he decides it’s too dangerous for Shouto to know his identity. His phone buzzes again, and he retrieves it and looks while still under the blanket.

 

Dabi:

Look at you being a big boy and outing that fuck.

 

Oni:

Not in the mood. That was exhausting.

 

Dabi:

I bet. Let me know when I can testify against him. This oughta be fun.

 

Oni:

I’ll find you when the public decides they want me to be involved officially. All I did was spill the tea. Now I just wait for people to drink it up.

 

Dabi:

So, the great Oni goes to UA, huh? Placing second in the Sports Festival with a fake quirk. You’ve got balls, kiddo.

 

Oni:

Kiddo? The fuck? I’m not twelve.

 

Dabi:

You look like it. Speaking of looks, it seems like you were giving my dear Shouto puppy eyes. You boning?

 

Izuku chokes on his spit, sitting up and kicking the blankets off of him. His face is on fire.

 

Oni:

No! What the fuck is wrong with you?! You said it yourself, I’m like twelve!

 

Dabi:

I did all sorts of things with all sorts of people at your age, sport.

 

Suddenly the urge to vomit is present. I think I’m traumatized.

 

Oni:

I’m done. I can only handle so much Todoroki bullshit in one day.

 

[Oni is offline]

 

I was going to call Shouto, but now I don’t think I have the heart to. Jesus, his family is insane. Izuku thinks about their match and how his flames made Shouto looks like a phoenix. It was breathtaking. He’s glad he could help his friend overcome an obstacle.

 

A soft knock on his door spooks him.

 

“Come on.” He calls, knowing who it is. Toshi has a habit of knocking three times, hardest on the second. Toshi opens the door and takes a seat beside him.

 

“Why’s your face all red?” He asks, brows scrunched in concern. Without verbally explaining, he hands his phone over to let Toshi read. He sputters, absolutely losing his shit. “This is his brother?”

 

“Yeah.”

 

“To be fair, you guys do seem totally smitten with each other.” Izuku rolls his eyes. “You really don’t see it, do you?”

 

“He’s just a friend.”

 

“Just a friend you refer to as ‘pretty boy’ and made hearts at on international television?” Izuku shrugs. “What are you so scared of?” The question catches him off guard.

 

“I’m not scared of anything.” He mumbles, throwing the blanket back over himself. “He’s just my friend.”

 

“I’m just your friend too but you don’t look at me like Present Mic looks at Aizawa.” Hold up,

 

“I don’t like that you’re drawing parallels between me and Eraser.”

 

“It’s just an example! You and I are best friends. What you have with Todoroki is different.” He’s right. I hate that. Stupid Toshi and your stupid logic.

 

“I don’t know.” Izuku mumbles, getting a tired groan from Toshi. “I’m a self-aware character.”

 

“Okay, what the fuck does that mean?” At this point, Izuku feels Toshi lay in bed next to him, on top of the blankets.

 

“It means that I know myself well enough to see that I’m an emotional starved mess. Shouto is just as emotionally stunted as I am!”

 

“Your point being…?” Toshi trails, sounding genuinely confused.

 

“What if I we don’t like each other how everyone else seems to think. We’re some of the first friends we’ve ever had. Shouto could very well just be mixing up his gratitude for friendship with something else.” Toshi hums in understanding.

 

“What about you, Izuku. What do you want?” God when did he become my therapist?

 

“I want the people I care about to be safe. It’s hard enough operating with you involved. I can’t risk anything anymore.” His friend has the audacity to laugh!

 

“You’re stuck with your conspiracy theorist sidekick, what can I say? It’s not a bad thing that you’re being more careful. You’re human.” Barely. If I were human I would have been treated like it throughout my life thus far, thank you very much.

 

“Toshi.” Izuku lifts the blanket off his face and turns to meet his friend’s gaze. “I don’t know how to be human anymore.”

 

“Considering the fact that you run around calling yourself Oni, it’s very on-brand of you.” They laugh, staring at the ceiling. “Don’t worry, we’ll show you how.” I don’t want to know who ‘we’ is, but fine. I’m fucking hungry.

 

There’s tapping on the door, followed by a soft click.

 

“Hey, little listeners! You both did well today. Come downstairs and get dinner, will ya?” Present Mic closes the door back without another word. They’re so nice to Izuku. Even Eraserhead has his own weird way of being kind. Izuku doesn’t want them involved. He’s so grateful for his support, sure, but what if that holds him back?

 

What if someone dies because of him.

 

A hand finds Izuku’s head, messing up his hair.

 

“I know that ‘my big boy brain is on fire from big boy problems’ kind of look, Izuku. Chill out and let’s go eat.” They wash their hands and go downstairs, sitting at the table. When Izuku sits down he leans over to Eraser.

 

“I see you’ve upgraded the locks on the windows?”

 

“Don’t you fucking think about it.” Aizawa hisses at him. “You broke my god damned window and you’re not doing that again.” Izuku hums.

 

“Am I on house arrest?” Aizawa sets his fork down, narrowing his eyes a little.

 

“Why are you asking? I’m not your parent.”

 

“Shouto found out I’m Oni and I owe him some sort of explanation.”

 

And?” Wow, you’re not my parent but you certainly sound like a nagging mother!

 

“And I might have to talk to Kacchan.” Present Mic and Aizawa look at each other, pleased with that answer.

 

“I want you in your room come morning time.” So I have a curfew? I can’t tell.

 

“Okay.” Toshi and Present Mic laugh.

 

“You really are parent and child.” Toshi teases.

 

“Are not! ” They hiss at the same time, before turning to each other and rolling their eyes. After dinner, Izuku sends a text to Shouto saying he’ll come over after running some earrands. Does Aizawa really think I’ll just give up my vigilantism tonight?  His door opens and Aizawa stands with his suit in his hands. Ah, so he’s accounted for it.

 

“You’re not going to be Oni. Your weapons and suit are staying with me.” My, I’m shaking in my boots.

 

“Fine.” He pretends to huff.

 

“The school has tomorrow off, but don’t use that as an excuse to stay out all night. We have things to do tomorrow.” What?

 

“Like what?” Aizawa shakes his head. Izuku can’t know? That’s bullshit. “Fine, keep your secrets, you grimy homeless man.”

 

“Midoriya, you’re literally in my house.”

 

“...Fair point.” He slings his backpack over his shoulder and walks downstairs, aware that Aizawa’s following. A sudden shift in the air makes him turn around. He catches what Aizawa throws at him. “Key?”

 

“What, you think I’ll wake up to let you in the house? Or that I’ll let you keep fucking up my windows?”

 

“Right.”

 

Izuku leaves.


 

 

Izuku is a dumbass. At this point, it’s not exactly an opinion. It’s fact. He might as well stomp down the street chanting ‘chaos! Chaos!’ as he mentally prepares to break into the police station out of costume. Sure, he has a disguise on, but he misses his Oni suit.

 

Izuku’s in drag, wearing a long purple wig and blue contacts. His scar is covered with concealer and he has a black mask over his mouth. He managed to steal a pink tracksuit that says ‘villainous’ across the butt. Hopefully, it doesn’t give off an Oni vibe. It’s good that this disguise is so far off from my normal look, but holy shit is this thing riding up my ass.

 

He strolls towards the police station mentally repeating a mantra of ‘Don’t pick the wedgie’.

 

He takes a turn into an alley a few buildings from the station, so he can climb up the fire escape and get onto the roofs. Izuku hops over to the station, using a screwdriver to take off one of the vent covers.

 

Once inside, he shimmies in the vents Tsukauchi’s office. Camera footage revealed that he already gone for the night. Now Izuku just has to get passed all of the less intelligent officers. Piece of cake. Izuku’s imposter is still in the interrogation room, he has about five minutes to manage to get him out of there. See, this is what happens when I have morals. I end up breaking into a police station wearing skin-tight sweats. Izuku drops down from the vent into the middle of a dark office.

 

It’s suspiciously easy to break into the room and get to the imposter. His head perks up when Izuku enters. 

 

“Well, well. Officers sent in a bribe?” Tashiro whistles at Izuku, making him sick. In a hurried motion, Izuku pulls the mask off his mouth so the voice changer doesn’t kick in.

 

“Shut the hell up, it’s Oni. I’m holding up my end of the deal.” The deal was if he got caught, that I’d bust him out. Tashiro’s eyes go wide.

 

“Woah. I didn’t even recognize ya, kid!” He laughs as Izuku picks his handcuffs. The hit the table with a clatter, and he hoists Tashiro to his feet. They have to be quick, seeing as they can’t tell if anyone passes the one-way glass. Izuku opens the door a bit, seeing that the cost is clear.

 

“If anyone stops us, let me do the talking.” Tashiro nods at the instruction. Izuku puts the mask back on. They walk out of the interrogation room. Okay, I can do this. I’ll put a little swing in the hips and some pep in my perky-assed step. If Tashiro notices the way Izuku walks, he doesn’t say anything.

 

“Excuse me, may you two state your business?” An officer stops them. Wow, I’m here minding my own damn business and I feel so attacked?

 

“Oh! I um…” Izuku trails with a high-pitched feminine voice. The mask changes his voice entirely. He twirls some blue hair around his fingers. “I came in to bail my friend out after getting a call from a Mister….” He crosses his arms with a fake huff. “What was his name? Tsuchauchi?”

 

“Detective Tsukauchi?” The officer offers.

 

“Totally!” He’s buying it. Hurry up and let me leave to I can get these pants off. My ass has like no circulation right now. “Yeah, that was his name.”

 

“I see. Well you two go on, now. Don’t loiter.” Izuku giggles and salutes the officer.

 

“Sir, yes, sir!” I’m going to sever my own tongue again. They leave the station with no other interruptions.

 

“That was surprisingly good acting. You’ve done this before?” Tashiro asks, genuinely curious.

 

“No. I don’t plan on doing it again.” It’s a good thing Toshi’s double wasn’t outed, or else I’d have to do that twice. Izuku and Tashiro go their separate ways.

 

Oni:

I’m on my way over, but be warned. I’m in disguise.

 

Shouto:

I’m sure it can’t be that bad.

 

Oni:

Fine, fine.

 

Izuku takes the time to walk to Shouto’s while also patrolling. Any cameras on the street would only get footage of some random woman beating up villains. Still satisfying. He only stops a purse snatcher. I wonder what it would feel like to kick someone wearing heels.


 

Shouto sits on his bed, listening to the playlist of Izu’s songs while he waits. Today was eventful in every meaning of the word. I can’t believe Izu stood for Izuku. Yes, Shouto had considered that the names were similar, but he thought if was just  coincidence. Due to the events of today, his father won’t be home tonight. Endeavor’s taken it upon himself to find Oni. If only he knew.

 

Some part of Shouto desperately wants to tell his father that Oni has been staying in his home on and off for the last week, just to see his reaction. A tap on the window makes his heart skip a beat, but for the life of him, Shouto can’t figure out why. Maybe he startled me.

 

He opens the curtains and is actually quite disturbed by the sight he sees.

 

“.....Izu?” The person nods.

 

“I told you I was in disguise.” The voice is highly feminine and not Izu’s at all. How does he get this technology?! “Please let me in, it’s cold and I want to get out these pants.” Shouto does as asks, watching Izu flop into his bedroom wearing an all pink tracksuit that is definitely not his size.

 

“Hi.” Shouto breathes. I have so many questions, but I know it’d be rude to ask them all right away. When Izu gets off the floor, Shouto can see just how detailed the disguise is. From the perfectly matched makeup on his face and eyes to the blue contacts he wears. Shouto once considered getting contacts to match the color of his eyes, or at least hide the blue one that reminds him of his father. Admittedly, things near Shouto’s eyes give him anxiety, which is completely understandable given his history.

 

“Hey, Shouto. Can I borrow some clothes?” Izu asks after taking his mask off, revealing his normal voice.

 

“They’re going to be big on you but sure.” Shouto turns away from his friend to fetch clothes from his dresser. I should give him the smallest ones I can find, those might fit him better than what I currently wear. It’s a shame Shouto donated what was too small for him a few weeks ago. Not only was it from the kindness of his heart, but because he knows charitable donations would piss off his father. He thinks donations are handouts, that people have to work for human decency. The pig.

 

When Shouto turns back around, he freezes.

 

Izu’s already changing out of his clothes, wig and shirt off. When he’s about to pull his pants down, Shouto clears his throat to get his attention. To stop Izu.

 

“Yeah?” Izu turns to face him, tilting his head a bit before his eyes grow concerned. “Shouto are you alright?”

 

“Huh? What makes you ask?” I don’t feel alright but I don’t know why.

 

“You’re on fire.” For a moment, Shouto has no idea what he’s talking about until he remembers his quirk. Right. His left side activates slightly.

 

“Oh, sorry.” He tosses the clothes to Izu and starts heading towards the door. “I’m going to make some tea, I’ll be in the kitchen when you’re done.” He leaves without another word.

 

Shouto paces around the kitchen. What did he say he was going to do? Right, tea. He’s going to calm down and make drinks for them. What just happened? Is this angina?  Shouto even considers the sudden tightness in his chest some form of overexertion from the festival. That would explain why my quirk just went haywire.

 

“Is your sister home?” Izu asks, coming out of Shouto’s room. The way the clothes fit on Izu make Shouto chuckle a bit. Even more so when Izu trips on a pant leg and gets a mouthful of floor. “Oh, sure. Laugh it up.” He groans, pushing himself back up. Izu waddles over and takes a seat at the counter by the kitchen, watching Shouto make the tea. The blue contacts are gone, but the rest of the eyeshadow and makeup are still on. 

 

“You know I have questions.” Izu hums thoughtfully in response, “Let me know when I can start asking them.” When the drinks are made, Shouto also grabs some snacks and joins Izu at the counter.

 

“You can ask. That’s why I’m here. Well, that and to say congrats on winning. Congrats!” He laughs sweetly.

 

“Thank you, Izu.” Where do I start? Shouto mentally sorts through all the new facts he’s learned with the realization that Izuku is Izu. “That’s why you don’t like All Might?” I remember him telling me that’s why he’s a vigilante, or at least one reason for it. At this point, everyone has noticed Izu’s uneasiness when it comes to All Might. Most of the class dismisses it as nervous fanboying.

 

“....Yeah,” He takes a sip of his tea. “He stresses me out. Makes me remember things I don’t want to.” There’s a strange tone in his voice. It sounds like All Might makes him remember the worst day of his life. He very well could be.

 

“I’m sorry. Why didn’t….” Do I even have the right to ask. “Why didn’t you tell me? You were right there all along and I had no idea.”

 

“You know why I didn’t.” Izu almost snaps at him. Almost. Shouto notices the tight grip Izu has on his mug, knuckles going white.

 

“You were within an arms' reach of me, Izu.” I’m being selfish, aren’t I?

 

I don’t want anyone I care about getting hurt. If keeping my secret from you meant that you’re safe, then so be it. If it meant that it prevents more loose ends for me to constantly run around and tie up, then I don’t see the problem.” He takes a deep breath, head down a bit. “If anything happened to you guys, I don’t think I’d ever forgive myself.” Right, he did it because he cares about me. The sentiment makes his heart feel heavy.

 

“Is Shinsou Catspiracy?” Izu nods, chewing on a cookie. He didn’t hesitate to shoot at one of the heroes when they got too close to him. “So you told him who you were?” At that, Izu’s eyes snap to Shouto’s.

 

“I didn’t mean to!” He groans, “He was following me one day and ended up getting mugged so I had to save him. He accidentally found out.”

 

“Oh, that makes more sense.” It really does, considering he’d never tell anyone. Wait, “Izu? You’re working with Aizawa to catch yourself?” That gets a laugh from him and a slightly crazed look in his eyes.

 

“He knows I’m Oni, Shouto. He thought adding Izuku Midoriya to the investigation would make Oni slip up and get caught. We went a while outwitting each other.” So Izu was a suspect from the start. Shouto takes a sip of his lukewarm tea before using his quirk to heat it up a bit.

 

“What are you guys doing now?” A fond expression settles on Izu’s face, as if Aizawa isn’t an enemy at all.

 

“All the facts are on the table, but he can’t do anything about it. I won’t let him get evidence. That’s all I have to do.” That’s impressive. It’s incredibly like you to do something that risky, though.

 

“You’re having fun with it, I see.” Shouto chuckles at Izu’s mad grin. After a moment of comfortable silence, Izu’s expression grows softer, more serious.

 

“Shouto, I’m sorry I didn’t tell you sooner. I was just… I wanted-”

 

“You wanted to keep me safe, I know. I forgive you. No more secrets.” That’s fair, right?

 

“No more secrets.” Izu turns to Shouto, “Want another secret?”

 

“Sure.” Izu beckons Shouto to lean over. Why they have to whisper when alone in the house, he doesn’t know. “I have a wedgie.” He whispers, catching Shouto off guard. It startles an actual laugh from him!

 

“Izu!” He laughs, pushing the boy away from him. “Not those kinds of secrets!” Izu’s on the floor howling, curling in on himself. It’s a fun sight, if the background of it wasn’t known.

 

“I couldn’t resist.” Izu wheezes in between breaths. After they calm down, and Izu climbs back up onto the chair, he holds a cookie out to Shouto. “Cannibalism? A snack for a snacc?” This joke again?

 

“You still haven’t told me what that means, Izu.” Shouto feigns an annoyed tone of voice, accepting the cookie. He hears Izu mutter something along the lines of ‘the readers will get it because it’s written’, whatever that means.

 

“You know, without your buttface of a father here the house almost feels like a home.” Shouto chuckles at that. In a weird way, he’s almost right. Maybe Izu’s presence makes it feel like home.

 

Izu gets up and wanders around the kitchen and living room, just looking around at things. He disappears from Shouto’s field of vision, quickly popping up with a box in his hands.

 

“You guys have board games?” He sounds genuinely shocked. Rightfully so.

 

“My father keeps things like that around the house in case people come over. He wants it to look like we live a nice family life.” At least to social workers and people interviewing him for his career. “Do you want to play it?” Izu nods, setting up a game of Scrabble. Shouto has to read the rules over, never playing the game before now.  They set up, playing as normal. Well, normal until Izu snorts behind a hand before laying down his pieces.

 

“F-U-C-K! FUCK!” He cackles.

 

“I um. I don’t think that’s allowed? Are swears allowed?”

 

“Doesn’t matter, they are now!” Well, he looks so happy playing the word, I don’t see the harm in it. Shouto decides not to rain on Izu’s profanity-filled parade.

 

Apparently, Shouto made an awful mistake. Now Izu only plays swears and slang. Shouto doesn’t even know if half of these are real words. What does ‘yeet’ mean?

 

Their time gets interrupted by Izu’s phone buzzing. His brows scrunch up as he huffs in annoyance at his phone.

 

“Kacchan wants to see me.” Kacchan is Bakugou, right? Why?  “He also found out I’m Oni.” Ah, more questions.

 

“Oh. Are you coming back tonight?” They pack up the game and start back to Shouto’s room.

 

“Probably not. Eraser wants me back by morning time.” He says that like it’s unreasonable. “I’ll be sure to call-” Izu takes a step and falls over his pant leg again. In the process, he’s managed to pants himself, lying belly-down on the floor.

 

This time Shouto doesn’t burst into flames.

 

No, he’s too baffled to do anything but tilt his head at his now pantless friend.

 

“Izu, why are you wearing ladies’ underwear?”

Chapter Text

Toshinori walks along the beach, trying to clear his head. So much had happened today. So much the Symbol of Peace had no control over. He has to admit it, this vigilante makes him feel helpless. Useless. I suppose it’s best to trust Young Aizawa with this. Vigilantes are Aizawa’s thing, anyways. Underground problems require underground solutions. Well, it seems that Oni is no longer an underground problem. He’s jumped headfirst into the spotlight, declaring war against the number two hero. He considered turning down Naomasa’s request to help out, but Oni went too far this time. After USJ, anything that comes near his students at all is to be considered a threat that needs to be taken care of. Until he tells his friend he’ll do it, they’ve given him little to no information about the vigilante.

 

Apparently, Oni has almost as much information as they do. As if he’s working among them!

 

He’s furious that a student was taken away so easily, but even more upset that it was Midoriya. He was going to use the medals as an excuse to talk to him. His only chance for him to say ‘we need to talk’ without Aizawa screeching in the distance. Toshinori so desperately wants to sort things out with the boy. Tell him how sorry he is for what he’s done.

 

He’d been considering giving Midoriya One for All for a while now. Someone who rose above it all and proved him wrong deserves the power to save the world. His guilt says Midoriya deserves the quirk more than he currently does.

 

An analytical quirk would also make a fine addition to the array of power it offers, as well. Not to mention young Mirio turned down my offering. Toshinori can’t say he’s shocked Mirio declined. His heart goes out to Nighteye, though. He’s worked so hard to find a good successor.

 

Toshinori feels he’s found one. That he let the right one slip through his fingers years ago and had no idea. It’s like in another universe, Midoriya did get One for All as a result of that day. If Midoriya goes on to be the world's greatest hero in countless other worlds…

 

What will he become in this one?

 

He’ll be a hero. A beacon of justice with or without my guidance. The kid wouldn’t harm a fly!

 

Movement in the distance catches his eye. Is that…? Toshinori knows few people with green hair. Midoriya’s walking across the beach, towards him. Well, not towards Toshinori specifically. His eyes lock with Midoriya’s and the boy looks like he shudders.

 

“My boy, do you know how late it is? Your parents must be worried sick.” Toshinori calls, wondering why he’s out this time of night. After all he’s gone through today, his parents let him out this late? A panicked look is quickly wiped off Midoriya’s face as he snorts. That’s a self-deprecating laugh. I know it.

 

“Trust me, it’s fine.” Midoriya stops in front of him, clearly having the decency to at least talk. Right, to him I’m a stranger. He’s not scared of a stranger.

 

“I saw you in the festival today, you did excellent.”

 

“Thanks.” Toshinori realizes Midoriya’s clothes are far too big for him, like his own. He’s wearing fancy eye makeup and his scar is covered up. What is he up to in the middle of the night? “You look like you have more that you want to say.” Being called out so bluntly startles Toshinori.

 

“Uh, yes, actually. I work with All Might. He’s been meaning to talk to you about some things.” Midoriya raises a fairly unimpressed eyebrow at the admission.

 

“Oh yeah? ‘Bout what?” Ouch.

 

“Firstly, he wants to apologize for saying something awful to you. Also, he knows you’re interning and helping out with the Oni investigation. All Might’s being offered a spot in the investigation, and wanted your permission to joi-”

 

“No.” Midoriya snaps, standing rigid. “He’s not going to join the investigation.” He starts walking past Toshinori, away from the conversation.

 

“I know you two have problems, my boy. Are you really willing to prevent Oni’s capture for personal reasons?” Midoriya laughs loudly after Toshinori speaks, as if there’s some horribly funny joke that Toshinori’s not a part of.

 

“I don’t want All Might on the team for several reasons. One of them being my own well being. There’s more to everything than you think.”

 

“If you would just stay and hear me out-”

 

“I don’t want to listen! I have shit to do right now!” He whines, still storming away. Maybe he’ll hear me out if I tell him who I am.

 

“Midoriya-”

 

“All Might, leave me the fuck alone.” Midoriya turns and glares at him, before spinning on his heel and walking away, visibly wiping tears. Toshinori hadn’t even transformed yet.

 

That’s right, Midoriya knew some time before USJ. I never found out how he knew. I never got to thank him for saving me.  He knew it was me this whole time and still spoke to me. I'd consider that progress. 

 


 

Katsuki waits outside his house in the cold. Deku said he’d take him somewhere to talk about all this shit. Lucky for him, his hands are still bandaged up. Honestly, it’s a miracle Katsuki’s still up and kicking after getting hit with that tranquilizer. His leg’s a bit sore from it, though.

 

The fucker’s been shot before.

 

Something about that realizing makes Katsuki feel uneasy. He needs answers more than he wants them. A mop of some dumbass curly hair comes into view.

 

“Hey, Kacchan.” His voice is broken, likes he’s been crying. Deku catches up and they walk away in silence a moment. Katsuki turns to get a good look at the nerd’s face, becoming confused.

 

“Why the fuck are you wearing makeup at three am?” Katsuki snorts.

 

“It’s a long story. I uh, needed a disguise to break into the police station. Eraserhead took my suit. This was the next best thing.” He observes the entirety of Deku’s outfit. “I was wearing an all pink track suit and a wig.”

 

“....So whose clothes are those? You mugged some poor fucker?”

 

“No!” Deku whines, “These are Shouto’s. I borrowed them but they’re way too big and I endedupflashinghim-”

 

“I’m sorry, the fuck was that last part?” Deku takes a deep breath.

 

“I tripped. They fell. I’m wearing ladies’ underwear as part of the disguise.” It sounds like a motherfucking poem.

 

“Why? Did you intend on dropping your fucking pants for the cops?” The glare Katsuki gets makes him feel… odd. The Deku he knew before wasn’t capable of looks like that. Then again, he wasn’t capable of breaking into places in drag, either.

 

“I was wearing really small pants, okay? The panty outline was a key detail of my disguise!” No, I don’t think it was, Deku. Deku’s talking about his vigilantism openly now, Katsuki sees. So once the cat’s out the bag, it’s really out of that fucking bag.

 

“Where are we going?” Katsuku recognizes this path. The route they’d take from his house to Deku’s.

 

“Where else, Kacchan? Home.” Not that he’d ever admit it, but a small lump forms in his throat. He didn’t sign up to see where Aunty Inko died. “I’ve been living there this whole time.”

 

“The hell-”

 

“Save it, fuckface. We’ll talk when we get there.”

 

Deku brings him up to the front door, muttering something about never using it. He opens the door and Katsuki is hit by a burnt smell that radiates inside. It’s not entirely unpleasant. Once he closes the door, Deku grabs him.

 

“Kacchan. If you yell enough to get anyone's attention, I’ll kill you where you stand, got it?” Katsuki swallows and rips his arm away from the nerd. You don't scare me, you dumb fuck.

 

“Fuck you, I have an inside voice.” He mutters, looking around the house. This fucking nerd really has been living here the whole time. Katsuki’s surprised by some of the technology and weapons lying around. In the corner of the living room is a crate and a few duffle bags labled ‘Endeavor’s agency’. He stole it.

 

“Before you resort to beating answers out of me, or whatever your small monkey brain instructs you to do, I’m sorry.” Saying he has a monkey brain was a sure way to rile Katsuki up, just as apologizing was a way to mellow him out. He stares at Deku, confused.

 

“Sorry?”

 

“For trying to kill you. For shooting you, I guess.” You fucking guess? The hell’s wrong with you?! Deku said he tried to kill Katsuki. Now that he thinks about it, something was mentally off with Deku during their fight.

 

“Whatever.” He huffs, moseying back over and having a seat at the table. Deku takes a deep breath, and explains everything. Almost everything. The fucker’s still hiding things. “So what are you going to do with your deadbeat dad when you get ‘em?”

 

“Kill him.” Deku says it like it’s the obvious answer. Like that’s the only answer.

 

“Crazy motherfucker….” He mumbles under his breath, “So, your quirk is Regeneration? Why the fuck do you have a scar?” Deku sighs, before lifting up his shirt. Along with the sight of pink panties peaking up from his pant’s waistband, Katsuki sees a large scar that trails all the way up his abdoman. Deku drops the shirt back.

 

“It’s from my own autopsy.” That sounds so fucking badass, but I’d never tell the freak that. “I died under that pillar over there. When I woke up in the morgue, my quirk was officially active.” He was never really quirkless. Katsuki remembers their fight, how he said his brutal bullying made the pain of his death more bearable. He can’t imagine what it feels like to be pinned down, unable to escape the most painful death you can imagine. Katsuki can’t imagine how Aunty must have felt. “Oi, stop your waterworks. They’re not going to put out that fire.” A rag gets thrown at Katsuki, who catches it without a thought.

 

“The fuck you mean crying?”

 

“Fine, fine. Sweating from your eyes. ” Deku snorts, “However the fuck you want to say it.” Katsuki reaches up, feeling wetness on his face. He decides not to comment on it. “So, Kacchan…” He trails.

 

“What.”

 

“What happens now? Do you get your answers and go back to hating each other? Pretending we never knew each other?” Deku sounds nervous. Katsuki knows it’s ingrained in the nerd’s brain after all these years. For once, Katsuki doesn’t know how he feels about it. A new feeling he hasn’t had enough experience with washes over him. Guilt? Shame? Regret? Whatever it is, it’s another problem for another time.

 

“And what if I want to tell the world that Mikumo fucking Midoriya is Oni.” His eye twitched.

 

“I’d tell the world that he’s dead.” He’s standing in front of me, yet I feel compelled to believe he’s telling the truth. In a way, he is. The Deku I know is dead. This is a new, oddly more tolerable Deku. “And I’d come after you, Kacchan.” He chuckles.

 

“Well, then I guess we just do whatever the fuck we want, huh?” They stare at each other for a while, before they realize the silence between them isn’t as tense as it was before.

 

“So um…. What happened after I died? What have you been up to the past few years?”


 

Shouta’s downstairs in the living room, ready to read over what he got from that brat’s apartment. He’d prefer to sit in bed and read, but Hizashi’s long asleep. He’d rather sit on the couch alone than wake him up. I should start with number one. Shouta organizes all the notebooks in order, picking up the first. It’s old and terribly worn out. The handwriting looks like a child wrote it. In the notebooks are various sticky notes, probably to add information from another point in time.

 

He opens the first notebook, offended by the handwriting even more. His disgust turns into some form of respect when he reads a sticky note saying it was written at the age of three. Mikumo was three and already writing at this level? There are some words in here that he’s sure some of his students wouldn’t even know now. The first entry is, of course, All Might. After him appears to be random entries. Out of order. Every hero has their strengths listed with their quirks, the basics of their fighting styles, and their weaknesses.

 

On All Might’s entry is a hastily written down link. Shouta types it in on his phone, bringing up a very old video of All Might, saving countless lives all at once. There’s another note.

 

“Mikumo likes to watch this every day. He’ll rock back in forth in his chair until me or Hisashi put it on for him. It’s the sweetest.” That’s his mother’s writing.

 

“Mikumo better be a nice big hero and write us a nice big check.” That’s Hisashi’s. His father’s note makes Shouta angry. Mikumo was three, and he was already talking about money. Shouta feels sick. He can understand Midoriya’s hatred for his uncle even more. The rest of the notebook is also filled with scribbles of hero costumes that look like they infringe on All Might’s branding.

 

Notebook number two is basically the same. Mikumo finished this one off right before he turned four. The kid wrote little surveys in the last few pages.

 

“What do you think my quirk is going to be?!?!

 

    -Fire manipulation -Mommy

    - Lasso made of flames - Dad

    - Doesn’t matter what your stinkin quirk is, Deku! I’ll win! -Kacchan.

 

Bakugou even signed it as Kacchan. If he recalls correctly, Bakugou calls Midoriya Deku because of his resemblance to Mikumo. While Midoriya calls Bakugou Kacchan because that’s what Mikumo introduced him to Midoriya as. Too complicated.

 

The third notebook is when he turns four. At some point, there’s a mass of notes written in the papers. They all say he’ll just be a late bloomer. That his parents are sorry. There’s a gap in the writing at some point. Showing he put the notebook down for some period of time before resuming it. He must have lost his confidence. There’s a small note written by Mikumo on the last page.

 

“For future Mikumo: If you ever feel all sad like I do now, think of All Might! He’s not just a hero for beating the bad guys. He’s a hero for saving people from the fear they feel. One day you’ll smile just like your favorite hero!!!” I wonder how Midoriya would feel reading these. Shouta bets Midoriya has already read what his cousin said. He wonders if Midoriya used any of this  analysis for his work.

 

Shouta goes through every inch of every notebook. Later on, his father’s notes disappear altogether. In place of them are taunts from Bakugou and his friends, calling Mikumo a quirkless piece of shit. Shouta pinches his nose, frustrated that some poor child had to suffer a life like this, only to meet a premature death.

 

Eraserhead has his first entry in notebook number twelve. It’s surprisingly accurate. The entry Mikumo wrote says there’s little to no information on Eraserhead. Barely any footage of his fights. “I admire Eraserhead because he doesn’t use a quirk to fight. He just makes every fight a quirkless one. An equal one. I kind of wish I knew how to find him so I could ask for advice.”

 

Well, Mikumo, it seems your cousin is going above and beyond in finding out about me. Is this how Midoriya knew of him when they first met? Many vigilantes don’t know about Eraserhead until Shouta already has them in custody.

 

The thirteenth notebook isn’t written by Mikumo at all. It’s written by Midoriya. On the inside cover is a note saying he’s taking over Mikumo’s analysis for him. The first entry is on All Might himself, as if keeping up with a tradition set by Mikumo. Only this time, the entry rips into every weakness All Might could possibly have. From taking him down physically, to destroying his actual will to go on as a hero. Shouta can guess this entry was written after All Might and Midoriya met. Soon after is an entry on Endeavor and how he can be ruined much easier than All Might. It seems his hatred of Endeavor also has a long history. The notes are elaborate and borderline cryptic at times. Several notes on quirk theory are jotted here and there. He must’ve had questions, considering he’s a special case of a severely late bloomer. There are notes about Hisashi Midoriya as well, listing anyone who mentions the name or anything involving his uncle.

 

The last entry on his uncle says he heard Hisashi fled to Canada. It seems Midoriya heavily considered flying all the way out to hunt him down. He does very well in English class, I can understand why he already knew so much.  

 

There’s a few pages that detail the birth of Oni as a vigilante. Down to the origin of his name. I thought it was just he could use that cheesy ‘strike you down’ line he likes so much. Midoriya has different reasons for the name written, from how Oni tend to prefer to stay hidden, to another meaning that an Oni is the soul of the dead. Both surprisingly fit him. Other notes say some believed Oni punished sinners. Sinners would mean villains in this context. He put a lot of thought into this name and it seems no one else knows this. Original designs of his costume include his bo staff being a literal iron club, but he decided no one would be threatened by it.

 

A few more pages on heroes, and he gets to Eraserhead. It’s much more in depth than the others. He knew I was after him from the start. “Even if he erases my quirk, I’d still proceed as normal.” A chill goes down Shouta’s spine. He’s saying that he’d still continue to break himself. Even if it kills him. “He’s faster than he is strong. Flexible too. Go for his eyes and joints.”

 

Shouta feels the phantom pains of USJ. His eyes and elbow. He forces the memories out of his head quickly.

 

Towards the end of the last notebook are notes about Midoriya’s own quirk. It looks like he’s done some experiments.

 

“I’m calling my quirk Regeneration. I’ll never get it properly registered, so this will have to do. Growing up, I always healed from wounds quickly, but not fast enough to consider it a quirk. Compared to my parents, this quirk is a mutation. I have a quirk just far enough from their’s to have me considered quirkless, ruining my life as a result. If hurt, my body essentially sews itself back up. It’s incredibly painful, but it’s only pain. I can grow back just about anything, including majority of my body.” What were his parent’s quirks?

 

“I once had my body cut off from the waist down, and it grew back. I think it doesn’t matter which half of my body has more mass, but whether or not my brain is still functioning. I have survived brain injury, but I’ve never tried decapitation.” It’d kill him. There’s no way he could survive from that, right?  “My theory is that my mom’s quirk is mostly responsible for this. She can attract small object to her, so maybe my body can pull itself together because of that.” It’s… possible. Shouta skims through more notes until his heart stops.

 

“USJ was attacked. Hitoshi and I went after the main villains to keep them from killing Eraserhead. After that, Shigaraki used his quirk on me. I thought it’d be fine. I was regenerating faster than he could disintegrate me. Until the pain starting getting unbearable. It was a burning itch that never went away. I started going into shock, and my quirk started slowing down.” Shinsou’s mentioned this before. “I think I went into shock earlier after I stepped between the Nomu and Eraserhead.”

 

He what? Why the fuck wasn’t I told about this?!

 

“When the Nomu tried to kill him with that statue, I caught it. I think I’ll call that move Hysterical Strength…. I’m only writing this shit down because I want it to help. I’m sick of nightmares where I’m a fucking teddy bear watching Shigaraki rip my stuffing out and cut open my seams.” He needs therapy. " Well, that and in case someone finds my body and decides they want Oni's origin story." Feeling nauseous, Shouta decides to put the notebooks away.

 

He’ll go to bed now, considering he has a busy day tomorrow.


 

 

“Shouta, wake up.” Hizashi wakes Shouta up with a soft kiss to his forehead.

 

“What time is it?” He groans, sure that he’s up too early.

 

“Nine. You wanted me to wake you earlier but I didn’t have the heart to.” Hizashi ruffles his hair before leaving the room, presumably to make coffee for them. Shouta stretches, getting up and shuffling straight to Midoriya’s room. When he opens the door, the kid’s curled up on the bed. His arms are over his face, looking like he’s shielding himself from something.

 

“Stop…. Please no more. Just kill me already…” Midoriya mumbles in his sleep, prompting Shouta to immediately wake him up.

 

“Get up, kid. We have to get ready!” Shouta smacks him upside the head with a pillow, startling Midoriya awake.

 

“The fuck was that for?” He whines, trying to kick Shouta away. “It’s like four AM.”

 

“No, it’s nine. If I’m awake, you are.” He’s tempted to pull Midoriya out the bed by a leg and onto the floor, but doesn’t when he sees him move on his own. He stretches and Shouta can get a good look at him when he stands. His clothes are far too big and definately not his. He has black and blue makeup smudged all over his eyes and face and it looks like he tried covering his scar. “Midoriya. What did you do last night?”

 

“I’m,.....” He tries to think of an excuse, before a shit-eating grin works its wya onto his tired face. “You’ve got me. I’m a stripper.”

 

“Okay, I’m going to walk away and pretend I didn’t hear that. You’re going to get ready and come eat breakfast.”

 

“Eraser, where are we going?” Wihtout answering Midoriya’s question, Shouta goes downstairs.

 

“Mornin’.” Shinsou yawns from the table, sipping on some coffee and talking to Hizashi.

 

“Morning.” Shouta moves to make his coffee, but Hizashi beat him to it. He sits down, gratefully accepting the cup from his husband. “Thanks.” Betrayal washes over him when he takes a sip and finds there’s no cinnamon in it. Shouta glares.

 

“I can’t do all the work.” Hizashi shrugs, hiding his grin behind his mug. Rolling his eyes, Shouta fixes his drink and waits for Midoriya.

 

“-ew times I been around that track, so it ain’t gon’ happen like that!” Midoriya sings and marches down the stairs, waltzing up to Shinsou. “Cuz I ain’t no hollaback girl!” He takes Shinsou’s coffee and starts drinking it, pointing to his friend. Shinsou sighs deeply.

 

“You ain't no hollaback girl.” He deadpans.

 

“Ding ding ding!” Midoriya gives his coffee back and sits down to eat breakfast.

 

“Is this a common thing?” Hizashi laughs, watching the kids interact.

 

“More often than anyone wants, yes.” Shinsou yawns, glaring at his friend with no actual anger behind it. “It means he’s in a good mood. Which is somehow just as scary as when he’s in a bad mood.” Both do sound terrifying. A good mood causes him to harrass me and the entire police force, and a bad mood creates this unholy demon child that wrecks anything in his way. Now that he thinks about it, Midoriya would probably be a nightmare for parents. I’ll deal with this later on today.

 

Shouta and Hizashi make it through breakfast, content with listening to Midoriya and Shinsou playfully bicker. They really have become inseparable since the start of the year. As much as he hates to admit, Midoriya has this ability to make people who were once closed off open up to him. He gives them the ability to open up to others. Shinsou needed someone like him, he thinks.

 

After breakfast, Shouta tells Shinsou they’re running errands for the internship, not missing the weird look Midoriya shoots him.  Hizashi’s job today is to keep Shinsou busy until they get back. Walking down the street, Midoriya finally speaks up.

 

“You’ve been refusing to tell me what’s going on today. What are we doing?” Shouta rolls his eyes.

 

“What, you don’t think we’re actually doing work for your internship?”

 

“No!” He whines, aggressively gesturing to a briefcase Shouta carries. “You never carry anything with you when we do stuff. Jesus, Eraser, you look like you’re an entirely different person!” While it’s true Shouta has his hair brushed back behind his ears, and some of his stubble is shaven off, he doesn’t think it’s that drastic.

 

“You caught me, we’re not doing the internship. I didn’t tell you anything because you have a loud mouth, and would have told Shinsou.” Midoriya’s mouth snaps closed, eyes searching Shouta’s face for more answers.

 

“Eraser, what are we doing…?” Shouta sighs, deciding it’s best to say everything now.

 

“You’re going to come with me and convince his parents to let me and Hizashi have custody of him.”

Chapter Text

“As fucking amazing as this sounds, why me? Why can’t you bring Mic. He seems like a much more...logical choice.” Midoriya asks, giving Shouta an excited look anyways.

 

“Someone needs to keep Shinsou distracted, and I don’t trust you alone in my home. Besides, I need you to come with me so they can see I already have one kid under control.” For a second, Midoriya stops beaming, confusion settling into his features. Shouta plans on explaining, but the look he gets says Midoriya already figured it out.

 

“Holy shit. You told them I was your kid, didn’t you?!” He laughs, then promptly trips and hits the sidewalk. “You’re a teacher and pro hero, isn’t that enough?!” He wheezes, scrambling to his feet.

 

“It’s just in case, relax. So, what has he told you about his parents?” Might as well get information now.

 

“Uh, not much. I’d say they barely know each other. They just make sure he’s alive…” He trails, “Oh! He said that when they found out he made a friend, they wanted to make sure I knew what his quirk was.” He looks furious.

 

“That’s disgusting.” Shouta mutters, seeing Midoriya nodding his head in full agreement. The brat looks like he wants to ask something. “What’s up?”

 

“This is going to be a surprise?” He asks.

 

“Yeah. He has no idea.” He still looks like he has questions.

 

“Eraser, you know what he’s going to ask, right?” Shouta sighs, looking at the ground rather than at his student.

 

“I do.” He’ll ask if Midoriya’s getting adopted too. We both know the answer. “Admittedly, I was scared.” He knows Midoriya’s eyes snap up to him.

 

“Why are you telling me this.” Why am I telling my enemy this, you mean?

 

“I was terrified. Hizashi and I always wanted a kid, but we couldn’t. Not with our careers. We gave up our chance to have a kid, to ensure the protection of people and their kids. Every time I thought of how great it’d be to be a parent, I thought about the irrationality of it.”

 

“They’d be targeted and killed for being your family.” A sentiment you seem to know well. Shouta nods.

 

“I was so focused on my child not being able to defend themselves, I hadn’t even considered teaching them to. I thought by time they learned, it’d be too late.”

 

“Toshi’s in a situation where his family life isn’t good, and he’s capable of protecting himself.”

 

“Exactly. He’s been practically living with us with no issues. Hizashi and I talked it over and decided to make it official.”

 

“I’m glad.” Midoriya’s tone is happy, but tired. “What are you going to say to him when he asks about me?”

 

“...I don’t know yet, kid. You’re being difficult in revealing who you are. We can’t take custody of you if you do have parents out there you’re hiding away from.” Should I mention the notebooks? “I read the notebooks from your room.”

 

“You can tell I got my knack for analysis from Mikumo’s pathetic desperation to be a hero.” He laughs.

 

“I don’t think your cousin was pathetic for wanting to be a hero. He just needed the right circumstances. If he had lived a little longer or met the right people, he could’ve done anything.” The notebooks mentioned his mother’s quirk. It was similar to Mikumo’s mother’s quirk. They were sisters, so it’s not uncommon. Had it been a more unique sounding quirk, he could track them down that way. Midoriya’s notebook gave no information on his father and what his quirk might be. What if-

 

A sniffle snaps him out of his thoughts. He turns and sees Midoriya wiping at his face. He’s crying.

 

“Did I say something?” Shouta asks, stopping their walk entirely. Midoriya stifles a sob, turning away.

 

“You were… As far as I know, no one’s ever told Mikumo that he could have been a hero.” Midoriya sniffles again, drawing in a large breath. “Did you know you were one of his favorite heroes?” That hurts. I’m painfully reminded of Midoriya’s age every time I see him like this. He’s a vigilante with too big of a heart.

 

“I read that, too.” He nods, unsure of what to do from here. “Midoriya, why are you crying?”

 

“Before UA, I’ve never been told that either.” He manages a laugh, but it’s wet and strained. “I settled for a vigilante. To be a hero, you have to fight against literally all odds. To be a vigilante, you could swing a bat around and already be halfway there!”   We’re getting off track.

 

“Are you going to tell me how to find your parents? You can’t just keep finding loopholes in the legal system.”

 

“I can and I will.” He huffs, crossing his arms angrily. “For the same reasons you decided you can’t have a kid, I decided I can’t have a family.” Shouta rolls his eyes at Midoriya

 

“You realize you’re not keeping up your whole ‘lone wolf’ thing so well anymore?” Midoriya glares at him before dropping the hostility. He looks to the ground, anywhere but at Shouta.

 

“I know.” Why do you sound like you’re going to run away?

 

I need to talk to you about something else from your notebooks.” Midoriya tenses. You’re not going to be in trouble if you don’t do it again, brat. “I read over the notes from USJ.”

 

“...What about them?” He seems genuinely confused. “I thought we went over everything?”

 

“I wasn’t told that you stepped between the Nomu and I. That you did that planning on taking the attack for yourself.”

 

“They didn’t tell you?” He looks even more confused. “I wonder why. But, yeah! I did. Made you look like a bitch and everything.”

 

“Midoriya, I was beaten to a pulp by a genetically engineered villain.” Shouta sighs, “Why did you do that? You know the adults don’t approve of that kind of behavior. I don’t.”  The greenette snorts a bit, giving Shouta a look of ‘did you really just say that’.

 

“Dad, I’m a vigilante. I don’t exactly live my life based off of other’s approval.” He’s changing the subject.

 

“Why did you do it?” The kid’s grin drops.

 

“I couldn’t let you die.” Even if it meant you’d be caught?  “As much as I hate to admit it, I do like you, Eraser. Not to mention I couldn’t let one of Mikumo’s favorite heroes die.” Shouta hums, not sure how to feel about Midoriya admitting he’s fond of Shouta.

 

“You won’t be too fond when I finally get evidence against you.” Shouta threatens, only getting a small laugh from Midoriya.

 

“Not gonna happen, Dickstick.” What did you just call me?  “Did you know All Might wants in on the investigation?”

 

“Unfortunately.” That gets a full glare from Midoriya. “What, did you think we’d tell the person we’re after? That’d be dumb.” But I guess even telling All Might about it was a big mistake. Can’t keep his mouth shut. Wait a second… “Did he talk to you about it?!”

 

“I ran into him last night on my way to Kacchan’s. He was in his skinny form and he said he worked for All Might. I guess he forgot that I know about him.” Midoriya looks at the man with a curious stare, like he’s realized something important. “You never told him how I know?”

 

“No. Telling him that would be telling him you’re Oni. He’s not a part of the investigation, so he doesn’t need to know.” The kid beams at him.

 

“You’re the only person I’ve seen call out the Symbol of Peace like that. I dig it.” Dig? What are you?

 

The two walk to Shinsou’s home, stopping for coffees along the way. Reluctantly, they get some for his parents as well. Shouta intructs Midoriya to act more like Iida or Uraraka while he’s there. While he agreed with the sentiment, Midoriya seemed annoyed to be told so directly. Shouta just needs him to act like a good kid of his. I don’t even know if I can act parental towards this brat. Even so, Shouta has no idea if Midoriya remembers how to talk to parental figures in general. The kid has no respect for authority and he really hopes it doesn’t show.

 

However, Shouta has a feeling Midoriya will try to behave for Shinsou’s sake. One the front steps of the Shinsou’s home, Shouta decides to warn Midoriya one last time.

 

“Try to be Izuku, not Oni. Got it?” Midoriya blinks at him a bit.

 

“So, you’re going to call me Izuku Aizawa for this?” No. I can’t.

 

“I already called you Izuku Midoriya during the festival. We’ll just say you kept the last name.” It goes unsaid that he's to call me Dad. I just hope it’s not in his usual tone.

 

“Alright, Alright. Let’s get this over with.” It feels like Midoriya wanted to get one last eye roll out before knocking. Shouta knocks on the door and takes a step back. A woman with black hair and red eyes opens the door. Her hands are made of metal. That might just be the full extent of her quirk.

 

“You must be Hitoshi’s homeroom teacher.” She greets, sounding a bit strained. “Come in!” Midoriya walks in first, hands balled up by his sides. To normal parents, he might just come off as being nervous. To Shouta, he can tell Midoriya is eager to say whatever’s on his mind and do whatever he wants. At least he’s trying. Shouta walks in, taking a look around the house. Shouta sees a man with lavender skin sitting at the kitchen table, sipping something. Alcoholic? Shouta knows it’s probably bourbon by the look of it. Great. He can use this against them. They knew he’d be meeting with them today.

 

“Howdy.” Shinsou’s father greets, not taking his hand off the glass. Shouta nods in greeting.

 

“I brought some coffee, for our discussion.” Mrs. Shinsou accepts them, and brings the other to her husband.

 

The house is full of pictures of a happy family. Only, if the family here consisted of only husband and wife. There’s absolutely no trace that Shinsou lives here. Maybe this is where he got his liking for videos and photography? From never being in any family pictures? The Shinsou’s lead Shouta and Midoriya into the dining room, having a seat so they can all speak.

 

“So, what did he do?” His father asks, watching Shouta with suspicious eyes.

 

“Pardon?” Shouta asks. Yes, I didn’t tell them the reason for the visit, but it’s awful to assume he’s gotten in trouble. “What do you mean?”

 

“Well, he obviously turned against you all if you’re coming to speak with us. Why else would you come here if not for his villain showing through?” Shouta sees Midoriya tense quite a bit. Instead of being himself, Midoriya takes a sip of his coffee. He’s trying very hard. That’s good, at least.

 

“Actually, Shinsou is one of my best students.” His parents both look like they’re having a hard time believing it. I knew they were neglectful, but I had no idea they’d be so…. Forward about their dislike for Shinsou.

 

“Then why are you here?” Mrs. Shinsou asks in a gentler voice than her husband. In front of him on the table, Shouta places down the briefcase he has, retrieving the papers.

 

“My husband and I would like to take custody of Hitoshi Shinsou.” He states firmly, “Your son has been staying with us for quite some time now, and I feel like we’re more of a family than you are.” I’ll include the time he and Midoriya were alone. It’d look bad for them to seem unsupervised at any point. The couple looks to each other, before briefly excusing themselves to talk it over.

 

“I’m going to explode.” Midoriya seethes, glaring at the door they closed. “I’m going to bash their heads in with every picture here that Toshi’s not a part of. Shouta sighs.

 

“Kid, that’s every picture here.”

 

“I. Know.”

 

“I want to thank you for trying to behave so far. It’s-”

 

“Not for you. It’s for Toshi.” The sound of the parents opening the door makes Midoriya stop speaking. Shouta’s impressed with how Midoriya seems to switch from his usual way of acting to this quiet kid. It’s scary. Then again, Midoriya was probably a quiet kid before his life ended up like this. Otherwise, being alone for all these years would’ve been much harder on him.

 

“We want to know what makes you think you can take our son?” Mr. Shinsou asks. He’s no longer touching his glass of bourbon, as if Shouta would forget. “Who’s this?” He nods a head to Midoriya.

 

“My husband is spending the day with Shinsou, so  I thought bringing by our son would help you see that we are fit parents.” Shouta expects the kid to keep sitting there like a creepy doll, but instead he extends a hand.

 

“Izuku Midoriya.” He greets, voice sounding nothing like it usually does. “It’s um… It’s n-nice to meet you.” They shake his hand.

 

“So, you say you’re a good parent but you’re letting a growing child drink coffee? He seems like his growth is already stunted as is.” I see what’s going on. They think if I gain custody of Shinsou, I can get them in trouble for neglect. They want to fight me so they look like good parents. It’s usually their word against their kids. It’s disgusting. As for the coffee thing, Shouta completely forgot Midoriya shouldn’t be drinking it. What’s a good excuse?

 

“S-Sorry for butting in! But uh, it’s not…. It’s not coffee. It’s apple cider.” He’s stuttering on purpose. It actually sounds good and believable. Midoriya spoke like this when they first met. When he was really trying to keep up the act. Shouta thinks Midoriya dropped this forced way of talking fairly soon into the school year. Maybe he can’t keep it up long enough? He’ll ask later.

 

“And did your son here acquire that thing on his face while in your care?” Mr. Shinsou asks, infuriating Shouta. No sane adult should be able to talk about a child like this. So, the child just so happens to be Japan’s most wanted vigilante, but that’s besides the point. Doing his best not to glare, he turns to Midoriya. On his lap, his hands are balled into fists. His knuckles are entirely white. Shouta opens his mouth to defend, but Midoriya’s already speaking.

 

“M-my scar is um… It’s from a villain attack. Before my dad adopted me.” His voice breaks ever so slightly. It’s making it convincing, but I know it’s because he’s furious with them.

 

“A villain attack?” Shinsou’s mother asks. So, out of these two, it’s the father that’s the real issue. Maybe it was him planting the ideas about Shinsou’s quirk being villainous all along. Midoriya nods and hums.

 

“He saved me.” I what now? You better keep track of all your lies…. Then again, you’ve been lying about who you are this whole time so I have faith in your dishonesty. Shouta’s learning that it’s only frustrating when he’s the one Midoriya’s lying to. A look of happiness flashes across the father’s face, as if he just won something from this.

 

“So you’re not fond of villains, kid? Do you know Hitoshi’s quirk? I doubt you’d be able to live under the same roof as him.” On Midoriya’s pant leg, Shouta can see blood. He’s digging his nails into his palms. Not to mention that his ears are bright red. God people, you’re making him look like a Christmas tree. Midoriya doesn’t answer. To Shouta, it feels like Midoriya quite literally has to bite his tongue to keep from screaming at them.

 

“Izuku is Shinsou’s best friend. They’re practically brothers already, we just need to make it official.” When Shouta begins speaking for him, Midoriya visibly relaxes. He takes a deep breath. “That’s how we met him, and came across your neglect.” Outright calling it neglect doesn’t sit well with his parents. His father glares, while his mother looks sad more than anything.

 

“How do we know you’re not under the influence of Hitoshi’s quirk, eh?” You say that like you found a trump card. This time, Shouta doesn’t even bother thinking of an answer. Anyone within a mile of the brat can see the gears turning in his head.

 

“My quirk is called Analysis. I came second in UA’s Sports Festival this year.” His stutter dropped. He’s trying to keep the anger from his voice. “My father’s quirk is called Erasure. It erases quirks.” You’re lucky they aren’t secretly villains, since you're stating my business. “He can erase Toshi’s quirk, and stop it. Up to this point, he’s never had to take any form of action against his son.” He’s already calling Shinsou my son. It’s probably just to piss off the parents. “Besides that, I fought Toshi in the one on one battles. I outsmarted him and got out of his quirk. If you don’t believe me, look it up.” He’s starting to snarl.

 

“Izuku.” Shouta calls. It feels weird to call this brat by his first name. I think I’d use Oni before Izuku. It gets the kid’s attention. He snaps his teeth shut and mutters a quick ‘sorry’. “What he’s trying to say is, you’ve nothing to be worried about. All you have to do is sign and you’ll be free to continue about your life.”

 

“You… You won’t take action against us?” I don’t like lying to people.

 

“Not if you sign, no.” But they deserve this. The father curses under his breath and snatches a pen from Shouta, signing. After, he all but throws the pen at his wife.

 

“Well, you can get his belongings out his room.” His mother murmurs, nodding to a room in the hall. Shouta can put them in the briefcase. His mother gets him a trash bag to carry some of the things in too.

 

Once in the room, Shouta closes the door and watches Midoriya punch the wall. There’s a loud cracking noise, and it’s not the wall. The brat takes a few deep breaths before sitting on the ground.

 

“I hate them.” He breathes. Shouta feels bad for him, seeing his first friend had those monsters for parents. “I hate them so much.” Shouta sits besides him, laying a hand on his shoulder.

 

“I do too.” That at least gets a laugh from him. “You did very well keeping it together.” He only gets a small hum in response. They sit in quiet a little while. Now’s a good time to start another conversation. “The class is going to be told to pick hero names for some internships coming up.” Midoriya’s head perks up, staring at Shouta.

 

“Why are you telling me?” The change in topic is also to help with his anger, which seems to be working. Midoriya’s shoulders drop as he relaxes a bit.

 

“I know that if I let you go off to someone’s internship, you’ll probably cause more trouble than anyone wants. Whether it’s from being Oni, or just yourself.” He trails, “I’m saying that you should intern with me. I can at least keep an eye on you, instead of just leaving it to some poor, unsuspecting hero.” Midoriya narrows his eyes at Shouta, frowning. Good. This isn’t supposed to help you. It’s for me and Tsukauchi’s benefit.

 

“You’re literally just saying you want to babysit me.” He huffs, standing a looking around the room. Shouta does as well, seeing how little his family has given him. There’s camera equipment everywhere. Shouta recalls his previous thought regarding the familiy photos. He must have gotten into cameras and stuff because he was never in any pictures. He just took it upon himself. Midoriya starts packing up the equipment, being more gentle than Shouta thought he could be. There’s also a green screen and a few ring lights. I should have brought my car. Shouta could leave to grab it, but he can’t risk being seen by Shinsou. Even then, he fears for the safety of this household if he just left Midoriya.

 

“...Do you know how to drive?” Not that he’d actually let him, he’s just curious.

 

“What kind of question is that? Of course I do.” Shouta had genuine hope when he started that answer. Of course you do.

 

Once the two get Shinsou’s things, they nod in acknowledgement at the parents. Neither of them wanted to speak. Midoriya is practically a pack mule, which Shouta doesn’t mind. He calls Hizashi and asks him to take Shinsou out for lunch, so they can place all of his stuff in his room while they’re gone.

 

Hizashi:

They signed?! We’re parents?!

 

Eraserhead:

We practically were before, but all you have to do is sign later and it’s official. So yeah, we’re parents.

 

Hizashi:

HOLY COW SHOUTA! I’M BRINGING HOME TAKEOUT TO CELEBRATE.

 

Eraserhead:

You guys are already getting takeout now.

 

Hizashi:

Then I’ll get another kind?? I’m so excited! We’re parents! Oh my god!!!

 

Hizashi:

Wait I gotta go. Hitoshi’s asking why I’m getting giggly.

 

Eraserhead:

Giggly, huh? Can’t wait to see that.

 

[Hizashi is offline]

 

Shouta breathes, allowing a small smile to form, hidden beneath his capture weapon. I guess we are.

 

Once home, Shouta and Midoriya lug everything up to Shinsou’s room.

 

“I remember the set up.” Midoriya mutters. He has an unreadable expression for a while, until it softens. He’s very happy for his friend, but there’s something else going on with him.

 

“Are you jealous?” Shouta guesses, getting nothing but a confused look from Midoriya. The kid turns away, focusing his attention on the set-up of the ring lights.

 

“Of Toshi being adopted by you guys? No. I’m super happy for all of you.” Not just for him, us too, huh?  “You guys get to be a family.” No one's saying that doesn't include you.

 

“Do you miss yours?” Midoriya laughs, startling Shouta.

 

“You’re trying to guess what I’m feeling about all this? Eraser, you’re a big kid. You can use your words and straight up ask me.” He won’t let me see his face. “I guess I miss my family. I know I do, but it’s been so long that I guess… I guess the feeling of missing them feels normal. Like it cancels itself out.” That’s an odd way to put it, but I get what he means. “I know that if I asked, Mic would adopt me in a heartbeat. I’m trying not to let him down.” Wait, this is about Hizashi?

 

“You’re worried about him?” Midoriya shrugs, moving on to unpacking Toshi’s clothes. Shouta starts hanging up what he can, to be put in the closet.

 

“Well, besides Toshi it seems like he’s the only one who wants me adopted.” Midoriya…. You’re so fucking stupid.

 

“Maybe you could let Hizashi adopt you if you told us about your real family. We don’t even know who you are.” Now, Midoriya faces him. He cocks his head to the side, scrunching up his brows.

 

“Izuku Midoriya, aka Oni?” He offers, sounding just as perplexed as he looks.

 

“We know Izuku isn’t your real name.” At that, Midoriya tenses. I wasn’t expecting a real reaction. “We had a theory that you and Mikumo are the same person, but it’s not panning out.” If the kid thought any harder about this, Shouta might see steam coming out of his ears.

 

“Tsukauchi.” He breathes, already aware of his screw up. “Oh my god. He asked me if my name was Izuku Midoriya at USJ and I said yes. Then he asked again after the festival. I knew the second time was a trap, but UGH!” He runs a frustrated hand through his hand. “And of course he tells you!”

 

“Well, yeah.” Shouta almost chuckles, entertained by this vigilante realizing he’s fucked up.

 

“But you guys don’t think I’m Mikumo? It’s a good theory.” I don’t know if you’re saying that because you are Mikumo, or because you’re not.

 

“Tsukauchi ruled that one out, too.” Midoriya nods in understanding. “Is Midoriya at least your real last name?” He nods. “So you’re Mikumo’s cousin on his mother’s side, but  Hisashi is a Midoriya too?”

 

“What, so a man can’t take his wife’s last name?” Shouta pinches the bridge of his nose in frustration.

 

“You know that’s not what I meant, you dumbass.”

 

“Woah! Usually I’m the one calling names!”  Midoriya laughs. It looks like he’s out of whatever mood he was just in, sounding a bit cheered up. “Anyways, I’m not going to tell you my real name, or how to find my parents.” He said how to find them, he’s implying they’re both still alive. Maybe the Sports Festival got their attention. “Eraserhead, I already told you. No one will look for me. No one. It’s not me being a dramatic teenager, it’s just the truth.” He guessed my train of thought well enough. The sound of a car door closing gets their attention. They leave the room and hide around the corner. Midoriya’s using the houses security cameras to make sure to get this on video.

 

“You ready?” Shouta asks. Midoriya nods excitedly, practically vibrating in place. Instead of something fancy, they wanted something that’d throw him off. The two simply placed the papers on Shinsou’s door, attached in place by tape. Someone’s coming up the stairs. The duo hide further behind the wall, but still able to see Shinsou. The teen walks up to his bedroom door, scrunching his noise when he sees papers taped to it.

 

Moving closer, Shinsou reads begins to read it, expression changing to shock. His jaw drops, and Shouta can see he’s holding his breath. Shinsou covers his mouth with his hand to stop the sound of his crying. He’s smiling. Still reading, Shinsou leans against the door, before his knees fail him.

 

Shinsou collapses, head on the floor as he begins to freely sob and cry tears of joy. Shouta and Midoriya step out to see him.

 

 

“Welcome home, Hitoshi.” Shouta greets, not fighting the soft smile he has.

 


 

 

Toshinori has decided. He’ll go against young Aizawa’s orders and speak to Midoriya. This time, he’ll settle for Midoriya’s mother. The school gives him access to student files, for him to choose a proper successor.

 

When Naomasa informed him of the Nomu’s genetic makeup, he remembers fighting down vomit and rage. All for One is back. The sick bastard that killed my master. As sad as this revelation makes him, he has to fight through it for the world’s sake. He’s the Symbol of peace, after all. He can’t be sad. No, the world expects him to smile. So he will.

 

At least, when he’s in his hero form.

 

Now, he walks the streets ignoring the concerned and disgusted looks from civilians. To be honest, young Midoriya was the first person to see this form and not have any sort of negative reaction.  A part of Toshinori wants to thank Midoriya’s parents for raising such a good kid. He’s very polite towards him, considering how awful he’s been in return. Toshinori sighs, walking to the boy’s home address. Maybe I can talk to Midoriya if he’s home, for now I’d like a chat with his parents.

 

He decided on Midoriya being his successor, and every time he thinks of considering someone else, Midoriya grabs his attention again. With the life he’s led, Toshinori knows fate when he sees it.

 

Maybe I can bring up that vigilante comment young Aizawa once made. Many great heroes have a certain tendency. In times of need, their body moves to save people before they can command it to. He knows Midoriya has this tendency.

 

Toshinori wonders if Midoriya doesn’t want him on the Oni investigation for more than one reason. Yes, because of who he is, which is understandable. Maybe when Midoriya committed accidental vigilantism in the name or heroics, he gained some sort of respect for vigilantes? Or, instead of being hesitant to catch Oni, he wants a full underground experience? Does Midoriya wish to be an underground hero? Toshinori supposes the next holder being secretive like Aizawa could be a good thing.

 

He’s nearing Midoriya’s home address, only he doesn’t see very many houses near him. He triple checks the address. This is right, but I don’t see any housing?  Toshinori ends up at a postal office, asking someone for help finding the address.

 

“That’s a PO box, sir.” The worker informs him. Toshinori’s very confused. Years of being the number one hero has given him a sense of intuition that he’s learned to trust without question.

 

So, why does Toshinori have a gut feeling that there’s much more going on than he realizes?



Chapter Text

Hitoshi wakes up slowly, half-convinced today was a dream. When he opens his eyes, he sees Izuku. Oh, I fell asleep on him. They’re on the living room couch. Izuku’s asleep too. How long was I out?

 

He remembers breaking down, and the sound of Izuku’s footsteps coming towards him. He tackled Izuku into a hug and they both cried until it hurt. Aizawa had a smile that he was trying to hide under his capture weapon, but Hitoshi could still see the corners of his lips and the crinkle of his eyes. Aizawa told them to at least get off the floor.

 

Little did he know, that led to Aizawa also getting tackled. Mic screamed to wait for him from downstairs, and it turned into a mass of people on the floor. After that, Hitoshi doesn’t remember. I happy cried myself to sleep. It’s the first time that’s ever happened, and he wouldn’t mind if it happened again.

 

Izuku doesn’t look like he’s waking up soon. Hitoshi lays his head back down, resting his eyes again. He stills at the sound of chatter coming towards him.

 

“-Aw look at them.” Mic chuckles, “They’re asleep!” Surprisingly, he’s being considerably quiet. Hitoshi pretends to still be asleep, glad his face is hidden.

 

“They look like freeloaders.” Aizawa breathes, sounding tired.

 

“They’re our kids, Shouta.”

 

“No, one of them is our kid.” ….What? Izuku’s not being adopted? Why?  Hitoshi can name several reasons why not, from both sides of the board. That still doesn’t make it right.

 

“Fine, but you realize it’s not long before we get Midoriya too.” There’s a stretch of silence, followed by a heavy sigh from Aizawa.

 

“....I know that voice, ‘Zashi. Please don’t get your hopes up for him. We can’t figure out who he is, or if he even has family. The moment we contact family, he’s most likely going to them.” It’s quiet again, Hitoshi doesn’t like it. He wants to scream at them that Izuku’s a liar, that he has no one besides them. For the sake  of what his friend wants, he’ll keep it to himself. Izuku would rather be alone than caged. He understands that.

 

“Why is it taking you guys so long to figure out this kiddo? Is the little listener that much smarter than you guys?” Mic sounds concerned, but not condescending.

 

“To be honest, he should get his IQ tested. He’s probably a genius. He’s just not using it for the right things. Or, at least not what is legally right.”

 

“A morally grey genius, huh? Didn’t you say you had a theory on his name?”

 

“Mikumo.” They figured it out?  “We thought it was Mikumo. There’s too much evidence stacking both in favor, and against it. It cancels each other out, keeping it frustrating.” Mic hums in response, no doubt trying to think of what he can say that’s helpful.

 

“DNA testing?”

 

“Thought about it. We can’t make him give samples. Any time we manage to get evidence from Oni, it goes missing in the station. We’ve even tried moving or concealing the location. He gets it every time.”

 

“What if you set him up?” What?  “Say something crazy, like ‘confess or you’ll be kicked out of UA’?”

 

“That’s not legal, Hizashi.” Aizawa laughs softly.

 

“You’ve worked with vigilantes before. Also not legal.” Aizawa makes a so-so sound in response. Hitoshi decides it’s time to stir, let them know he’s awake now. “Aw.” Mic breaths when Hitoshi gets up and stretches.

 

“Your eyes are puffy.” Aizawa teases.

 

“I feel attacked.” Hitoshi looks over to Izuku, frowning at the pained expression on his friends face. He stirs, shaking his head.

 

“Stop. Stop please stop.” He mumbles. “Kill me, kill me just don’t hurt her.” Is he talking about his mom?   Hitoshi move to wake his friend, only to get an arm slapped across his chest. Izuku sits up straight, arm shielding Hitoshi like a pizza delivery driver would with their orders. “Lay a finger on her and you die.” Aizawa’s already on his feet, going to get the weighted blanket. He’s holding me back, but not hurting me. “No!” He chokes, face contorting into horror. “M-” Hitoshi slaps a hand over Izuku’s mouth before he can finish the word ‘Mom’. They hear this, and it’s over for him. Mic shoots him a concerned look.

 

“It’s not our business what he dreams about.” Hitoshi answers softly, getting an approving nod from Mic. Aizawa returns with the blanket, wrapping it around Izuku tightly, waking him up gently.

 

“...Did I do it again?” Izuku mutters, looking not at all shocked but still saddened by it.

 

“Yeah.” Hitoshi answers, getting a hum. Izuku leans onto his shoulder, letting Hitoshi support his weight. “Feeling okay?”

 

“I’ll get there. Eraser, can I use your shower?” Aizawa has an unreadable expression, before he gets up.

 

“You live here. Use whatever you want as long as you don’t break it.” Lives here, but not adopted by them. “Put some decent clothes on, we’re going out for dinner.” Aizawa? In public?

 

“Oh, okay.” Izuku hums.

 

“Midoriya.” Aizawa takes on a stern voice, “Use hot water.” Izuku blinks at him, before giving a small nod and leaving. I told Aizawa a while ago that he takes cold showers after nightmares. He remembered that?  Hitoshi smirks a bit, recalling that lie that is ‘Midoriya isn’t my son’ that Aizawa likes to spout.

 

“Hitoshi, you get ready too. We’ll leave in an hour.” Mic calls.

 

“Okay. So, what do I call you guys?” Mic looks like he’s thinking it over. Aizawa answers for them both.

 

“Whatever you feel like.” If Izuku heard this, he’d have a field day.

 

“Alright.” I’ll call them Dad or something once I get used to it. Once the realization fully sets in. Hitoshi excuses himself to his room.

 

His room!

 

After he read the notes, he never actually went into his room. Once upstairs, he takes the papers from his door, setting them aside to hang them up later. Can he be blamed for wanting to frame them? In his room is all of his camera equipment, set up almost exactly it was in his old room. His clothes are both neatly in the dresser and in the closet. It looks like they went through the trouble of recreating his room. Hitoshi looks to his camera and smiles a bit.

 

He gets his mask out, pulling it over his face. He steels his nerves, slipping into his Catspiracy headspace. The camera’s turned on, and he greets his audience.

 

“I know I’ve a lot to explain for my latest stunt. Or, my involvement in my friend’s stunt, I should say. That can wait. I have something I’m genuinely excited about that I want to share with you.” Tragic backstory laced with a monotone voice? Sure. “As you can tell, this isn’t my usual place of filming. Though, it will be my new place of filming.” Hitoshi takes a deep breath, finally ready to be some sort of personal with his viewers. “I was adopted. The house I lived in before this was nothing but a house. It wasn’t home. I was adopted because people thought I was quirkless. Turns out, I was a late bloomer. I was almost eight years old when I used my quirk for the first time. When I did use it, I went years wishing I was quirkless.” Hitoshi holds a hand up, “Now, I know what you’re thinking. How bad can your quirk be, right? That’s the thing! It’s not a weird or bad quirk. It’s one that you still wouldn’t want used on you. I went my life being called a villain over something I had no control of. Neglected by my foster parents because they thought I’d hurt them. Despite never even looking at them with negativity.”

 

At this point, Hitoshi’s doing his signature pace around the camera.

 

“So, I’m very happy to say that I was adopted today. By nicer people. In fact, both of my new parents are pro heroes. Who? I’d never tell. I want to thank you guys for never asking too many questions about the man behind the mask, but I think you may get the mask to crack a bit soon enough.” With that, he ends the video and plops down onto his bed.

 

Just enough to keep them on the edge of their seats, but not enough to reveal who I am. He takes his mask off. Hitoshi thinks of the chain of events that’s led him here. His life is better than it’s ever been. He has a family and a best friend. A good education and he can see his future ahead of him. A realization dawns on him, he almost wants to laugh.

 

All of this is because Izuku was born with an anomaly of a quirk. Our lives are like this because of a mutation.

 

The country is like this because of a mutation.

 


 

 

Izuku sits on the floor of the shower, letting hot water rain down on him. He wanted cold water to wake him up, but he’s trying to respect Aizawa’s wishes. Well, the wishes that aren’t dumb as fuck. Which does leave very few. The dream he had doesn’t happen very often. Alternate scenarios of how his mother dies by Hisashi’s hands. All of them end with Izuku unable to do a thing to prevent them.

 

He deep conditions his hair while he thinks over everything. Izuku’s never seen Toshi so happy. He knew once he started crying, it was only a matter of time until Izuku started too. How am I going to explain to him that I’m not being taken in by them?  Izuku looks around the products in the shower, most of which are undoubtedly owned by Mic. Does this man have no sulfate-free shampoos? Well, I guess it makes sense. Considering the butt ton of gels and hairsprays he must use every day.

 

Izuku almost feels bad. He invades their private life, uses their things, and leaves them with nothing. I feel bad for Mic, not Eraser. Making Eraser mad is fun.

 

Once out the shower, he fixes his hair and puts on clothes that actually fit. For the first time in a while, he doesn’t look like the raging dumpster fire he usually is. Me? Rising above every bar anyone’s ever set for me? More likely than you think. Izuku moves downstairs and sits on the couch, looking at his phone.

 

All of Oni’s latest notifications are about Tensei Iida being hospitalized by the hero killer. Stain’s an example of vigilante turned villain, and above all else, he’s terrible for Izuku’s reputation as Oni. He can smell it from a mile away:

 

‘What’s to keep Oni from becoming a villain?’

 

It’s just what the media wants. When Izuku’s the one to bring Stain to an end, what will they say then? Besides, he knows what it’s like to have family hurt with nothing you can do to prevent it. Izuku knows what Iida must be feeling right now.

 

I can use that vulnerability to get information. Better yet, he can plant bugs in Ingenium’s agency and see what his sidekicks have to say.

 

“Wow, you look like an actual person.” Toshi teases, giving him a hand up.

 

“I could say the same to you.” Toshi has always had a better sense in fashion than Izuku, so no one is really shocked by that. He wears a jean jacket with a painting of UA’s logo on the back. Izuku wears a dark purple shirt with cuffed light washed jeans. The outfit seems to get Toshi’s approval, because he’s not being ordered to change immediately.

 

“You guys ready to go?” Aizawa and Mic come into the room. Aizawa wears a black t-shirt and black jeans, and Mic wears all black too. The only difference is the yellow bomber jacket he has on top. His hair’s in his signature bun. It almost makes Mic unrecognizable.

 

“Yeah.” Toshi and Izuku answer.

 

In the car ride, no one speaks. They listen to the radio comfortably.

 

Eraserhead:

Before you ask, I can’t discuss your interrogation off the clock. That, and Hizashi would kill me if he knew I was thinking about anything other than celebrating right now.

 

Oh how I want to tell on you.

 

Oni:

Got it. So, what is it?

 

Eraserhead:

What do you know about Stain?

 

At that, Izuku sits up. Finally, getting to the good shit.

 

Oni:

Almost nothing. I know that he used to be a vigilante named Stendhal.

 

Eraserhead:

I remember him.

 

That’s right, Eraserhead did a lot of vigilante related work. No wonders he’s so pissy when it comes to my vigilantism. Izuku did wonder why he wasn’t just assigned a different hero when Eraserhead proved to be unable to capture him.

 

Eraserhead:

If you join my internship, I plan on hunting him down. It’s been a while since I’ve been too involved with vigilantes, so I guess having your viewpoint would help a bit.

 

Oni:

Eraserhead and Oni! Hero duo!

 

Eraserhead:

Shut up. We’re not a team.

 

Oni:

Greasy old man has nationwide wanted vigilante for a sidekick! I can see it now!

 

Izuku can hear Eraserhead grinding his teeth from the passenger seat.

 

Eraserhead:

You’re sleeping outside in a cardboard box tonight.

 

Oni:

Bet.

 

[Eraserhead is offline]

 

Izuku laughs, getting a confused look from Toshi. He looks at Toshi’s phone, seeing him on Twitter. He’s always been really good with fan interactions. Naturally, not being able to talk freely about the Oni situation was hard for him.

 

The restaurant was chosen by Mic, and it’s the fanciest one he’s ever been in. Izuku almost feels like he’s being judged for being there. Yet, he wants to do the most horrendous things he can think of. Being surrounded by so many well-mannered people makes him want to jump on the table and dance. Pants the waiter, anything.

 

Aizawa seems to see his desire for utter chaos, and shoots him a glare.

 

“Best. Behavior.”


 

 

The class is back together for the first time  since the festival, and the amount of offers people got are up on the board. Shouto got the most. He deserves it, dammit. Izuku got second, and Kacchan came closely after. Why do I get the feeling I got more because of pity votes for the kidnapping? It does fill him with pure joy to hear Kacchan mutter things like ‘Shitty Deku’ under his breath.

 

Their relationship is definitely better than it was before the Sports Festival, but it’s nowhere near functional. The two essentially agreed to throw everything out in the open, and let the other do whatever they want with that information.

 

There is, however, the unspoken threat that Izuku will be forced to take action if Kacchan says anything about him to anyone else. Everything else is fair game to them.

 

“For the upcoming internships, you’ll be expected to think of Hero names. You will be able to change them in the future, before you graduate, but I expect all of you to take this seriously. Many people will wind up stuck with what they choose now.” Aizawa explains, already slipping on a sleeping bag. Midnight comes in and takes over for him, calling up any one who volunteers.

 

Ashido’s choice of Alien Queen gets denied immediately, putting a damper on the classes’ overall mood. Well, I’m pretty sure that has some issues with copyright. Tsu, like the angel she is, goes up and graces the class with the name Froppy. It’s perfect and on-brand. Best of all, it eases everyone’s stress regarding their names. Izuku leans back in his seat to show Toshi his whiteboard.

 

Toshi loses his shit, slapping a hand over his mouth to keep from laughing too loud.

 

Izuku wrote a simple three letter name:

 

Egg.

 

That of course was for the sake of making Toshi laugh, and he’s not serious. He has an idea that he’s set on. He just doesn’t know if it’d be allowed. I can bullshit my way out of it. Toshi goes up to the front, turning his board around.

 

“I was always treated like an awful person for having this quirk. I want to make people feel safe, and inspire. I am the Manipulative Hero: Puppeteer.” He certainly sold it well enough. The class yells approval. Little do they know, his plan is for his hero name to be Catspiracy once everything’s out in the open.

 

Shouto goes up to the podium, and turns his board around without another word.

 

“...Are you sure?” Midnight asks. Shouto gives a small smile and nods. It’s a smile his classmates have never seen before.

 

“Someone I care deeply about calls me Shouto. It makes me feel like I can do anything. It’s my hero name.” The class breaks into exclamations of ‘Aw’s and ‘oh my god’s. Izuku looks at his friend and his face feels like it’s actually on fire. You’re picking your hero name because of me? Oh, my heart.

 

“Someone calls you that because it’s your fucking name.” Kacchan huffs, actually getting a laugh out of Izuku.

 

Iida also chooses his first name, saddening Izuku. I will find him. Izuku looks at Iida and he’s worried. He knows the face of wanting revenge. Thinking about it every waking second and letting it consume him. I never thought Iida was capable of that.

 

Kacchan gets denied, and refuses to say anything that isn’t stupid.

 

“I know using at least one of your two brain cells could help you think of a good name.” Izuku hisses to Kacchan.

 

“EH? THE FUCK DID YOU SAY TO ME?” Kacchan screams, getting the classes’ attention

 

“I-I just said I could… I could help you with a name!” He fakes the voice he had as Mikumo. The class isn’t entirely used to me dropping my act. It gets real annoying but it’s fine. When talking to majority of the class, he’ll just keep the guard up entirely. Kacchan notices him faking in front of the class, glaring at Izuku but not calling him out.

 

When Izuku goes up, he can feel the class trying to get a read on him. I bet they think I’d chose something like ‘Deku’, huh? I probably would in another universe. But that’s not canon here.

 

He turns his board around and the class screams.

 

“I um. I’ll be frank, Midoriya. I don’t think you can do that.” Midnight’s voice is apologetic. “Is there a reason you chose…. This?”

 

“I chose Oni as my hero name for reasons…” He trails, not missing Aizawa stiring on the floor, before glaring at him in annoyance. “I was um.. Already considering it as a name before that vigilante person made it seem evil.” He rubs the back of his neck, faking nervousness. “I just really like it for a name! And uh, and it’s allowed because the vigilante isn’t licensed under that name. It wouldn’t mess with my work. I also uh…” He trails, forcing tears into his eyes. “When he kidnapped me, I felt so useless and hopeless.” At the mention of being useless, Kacchan tenses. Would you have done that if I chose Deku?  “I don’t want to feel like I can’t do anything again. I want- I want to use the name to fuel me to do better. Like Oni strikes down his enemies, I want to strike down mine and strike fear into the hearts of villains.”

 

He finishes his speech, and the class resorts back to yelling about how badass his declaration is.

 

“Well, if it doesn’t cause you problems with your career, I don’t see why not.” Midnight hums, still looking unsure.

 

When the truth comes out, you guys are going to murder me. On the way back to his seat, he meets Shouto’s eyes. His expression is soft, eyes holding a look that he can’t decipher.

 

Now they have to look over their offers. He has so many pages to go through. It’s a good thing he’s already chosen to take Aizawa up on his offer.

 

“Izu.” Shouto calls, getting his attention. “Who are you going to pick?” Some classmates give Shouto a weird look, never before hearing him go out of his way to talk to someone else. It’s even more bizarre to them when he uses the cutesy nickname for Izuku. I see your creepy smile, Toshi. In response, Izuku manages a subtle nod to Aizawa, getting an understanding nod from Shouto.

 

“You?” Shouto’s expression turns a bit more serious, like he doesn’t know if he should tell Izuku.

 

“I was thinking of interning with my father…” Oh, that’s what this is about.

 

“Why?” He’ll hurt you. He’s a piece of shit and you’re better off with literally anyone else.

 

“I think I want to learn to control my fire as well as my ice.” Izuku’s heart feels funny, knowing Shouto’s doing this because of his actions. “That, and because I think it’d help you.” The look Shouto gives says ‘read in between the lines’, and Izuku gets it. It’ll help me collect information on his shit stain of a father, as well as keep suspicion off of where Shouto stands in all this. It’s perfect.

 

“Thanks, Shouto.” He smiles, smacking Toshi when his friend mocks him.

 

Reading over the offers intrigues him more than anything. Some make him laugh. Many of these offers are from people Oni has gone against or had to use to work. Many heroes try to capture Oni when they see him, but only Eraserhead goes out of his way to track him down.

 

One specific offer causes his chest to pound straight out of his chest. Izuku bolts upright into his seat, not settling when he feels Toshi’s hands on his shoulder trying to ground him. Aizawa’s already up and coming to pull him from the class. A glance at his paper tells him everything he needs to know about the situation.

 

Izuku’s top offer is from All Might.

Chapter Text

Shouta tells the class to remain in their seats as he pulls Midoriya out of the classroom. What was that idiot thinking?  It’s odd, Shouta was beginning to think Midoriya was getting over his anxiety when it comes to All Might.

 

Maybe Midoriya just needs time to mentally prepare.

 

Hitoshi has Midoriya on the floor, doing a breathing exercise. Thank god I don’t have to. The boys start talking, Shouta decides to take them into the lounge.

 

“Midoriya.” He starts, getting both pairs of eyes on him. “Remember that you already chose your internship with me. All Might doesn’t matter. He doesn’t have top priority.” Midoriya nods, still looking shaken up by everything.

 

“I think we’re good.” Hitoshi mumbles, trying to heave the weight of his friend off of him.

 

“You two can stay here as long as you want. Get coffee or something. I’m going to yell at that old hag.” Shouta announces before hunting down All Might.

 

Around the corner, Shouta can hear All Might on the phone with someone. Feeling he deserves it, he sneaks over to listen.

 

“-I just feel like he’s the one to be my successor. He’s got the heart of a hero! Or, at least he did before I broke it.” A pause, “I feel terrible, sure, but I’m not going to make him my successor out of guilt. It’s out of respect for what he’s done despite being torn down like that.”

 

What? All Might you can’t be serious. Jesus, I don’t need this bull.

 

“I also have a feeling that there’s more to this kid. Something Young Aizawa doesn’t want me to know about. Even Naomasa told me I don’t have clearance! Whatever’s going on in this investigation, I want to help in any way that I can.” Shouta decides to round the corner, snatching the phone from All Might.

 

“I apologize in advance for ending this conversation to inflict bodily and emotional harm upon the Symbol of Peace.” Shouta hangs up, before snatching both of All Might’s tufts of hair and dragging him. In a private office, he all but throws All Might into a chair.

 

“...I’ve been meaning to have a chat anyways.” All Might mumbles, rubbing the back of his neck.

 

“I will lead this conversation. Now, I heard you extended an offer to Midoriya? A student that’s already interning under me?” All Might’s eyes widen.

 

“I’m so sorry! I completely forgot that being part of the investigation counts as an internship!” He sounds genuine, but a hero can’t make these stupid mistakes. “I extended an offer because I felt he deserved the chance to study with the number one hero.”

 

“While no other student in the entirety of the school has ever received an offer from you?” Shouta narrows his eyes at the man.

 

“It’s a personal matter for me as well.” All Might admits, sounding a bit defeated.

 

“I remember telling you that if you truly want to express how sorry you are, stay away from him.” All Might hums, looking to the floor.

 

“That is why I never asked him to join me. I only extended an offer on paper.” Shouta laughs at that, the sheer stupidity of it.

 

“All Might, whether you know it or not, you have so much power over how those act around you. Would you ever turn down the number one hero? Even if he doesn’t like you, he feels morally and socially obligated to accept.” That’s why he panicked. He was scared there was some sort of top priority to take. A sort of strangled noise comes from All Might as he puts his hands in his hands.

 

“I’m an idiot.” He hisses.

 

“Yeah, you seem to have a terminal case of it.” Now to move onto more concerning things. “You want him to be your successor?” At that, the Symbol of Peace snaps his head up to look at him. Like there’s some sort of terrible secret. “What exactly does it mean to be your successor?”

 

For a long time, All Might remains silent.

 

“It means to have my quirk. This power that’s been passed down to me.” He’s not looking at me. A quirk that’s passed down?

 

“You weren’t born with a quirk.” Shouta’s always been able to see someone’s quirk factor to switch it off. He can see if a person has a quirk factor at all, and Shouta has never seen All Might’s. After a long while of stressing over it, he just decided it was part of his all mighty quirk. Not once did it occur to him that a quirk could be given.

 

“You understand that no one is to hear of this ever.” Obviously. I’m not four. “I was born quirkless, given this quirk by my master to defeat a great evil. That is the only reason why this quirk exists. I am the 8th holder, and I’d like to make Midoriya the 9th.” Shouta takes a deep breath.

 

“A child.”

 

“Excuse me?”

 

“You wish to bring a literal child into this legacy or whatever, instead of waiting until he’s old enough to fully decide whether or not he can do it. All Might, did you sacrifice your chance at a family for it?” All Might’s eyes close a moment, a small smile forms.

 

“My master was like a mother to me. She was taken away. I haven’t let anyone too close. I’d never forgive myself.” The burden of being the Symbol of Peace. I’ve always known he’s made this sacrifice, but it seems the general masses don’t realize just how much heroes give up for them. It’s a sad life.

 

“So you are aware of what you’re doing.” All Might nods.

 

“I was picked as a child, too. It seems there’s never enough time to train them to be ready. The next holders are getting progressively younger. We can’t beat him.” Him. I’m starting to think this is that hold myth all underground heroes know.

 

“You understand what you’re going is wrong, that’s enough for now. I advise you pick anyone but Midoriya.” For everyone’s sake.

 

“I keep trying, no matter what I do or who I scout, it comes back to him. He’s the heart I’ve been looking for. He can be the next Symbol of Peace.”

 

“All Might, is this great evil you speak of called All for One?” All Might stills, mouth dropping. It snaps shut as he nods slowly. “You’ve never been an underground hero, All Might. We dissect every little rumor and myth until we can find the truth of it. Find the real bad people responsible and make sure they can’t hurt anyone again. The story of a man who can steal and give quirks sounds beyond fake, yet we’ve heard so much about it that everyone believes it’s real to some extent. This is the man you said seven other people with your power have died trying to defeat?”

 

“....Yes. Soon, it will be eight.” The air in the room grows heavy.

 

“You’re not going to die. Don’t think that for a second. The moment you think it, you no longer stand a chance.” All Might knows this, so why is he so broken by it. “In any case, I’m telling you not to bring Midoriya into this. There’s a lot going on with him. Getting mixed up in some ancient evil isn’t what he needs.”

 

“I understand.” You’re not saying you’ll keep him out of it. “If I die before finding a successor, please see to it that he never finds this out. I’d hate for him to bear any guilt for my mistakes.” All Might sees himself out, leaving Shouta with racing thoughts and a splitting headache.

 


 

 

The rest of the school day went by fairly fast, with all the excitement from the internships buzzing.

 

The class is at the train station, figuring out how to get to their internships without getting lost. Toshi walks by his side, a bit closer than normal. He’s getting protective over me because of early. I’m fine, you overgrown cabbage. Izuku keeps an eye on Iida, sighing when he sees he’s looking for the train to take him towards Hosu.

 

“Izu.” Shouto calls. Izuku turns and before his sense of fight or flight can kick in, two arms wrap themselves around him. He’s hugging me. We’ve hugged before but never when I’m out of costume. Some classmates stare a moment at the sight, incredibly confused. They’re wondering why Shouto’s being affectionate and reaching out to people for once. It’s kind of funny, Izuku admits. He wraps an arm around Shouto, holding his suit’s case in his free hand. “Stay safe.” Shouto whispers.

 

“I always am!” Izuku snorts, “Make sure you tell me the moment your shitbag father decides to throw a fit. If he so much as looks at you, I’m shoving his dick into a nutribullet blender.”

 

“I will.” Shouto tightens his hold a moment before letting go, walking onto his train and giving Izuku a small wave.

 

“Yes, so friendly, because you and I have totally said goodbyes and hugged like we were in a soap opera.” Toshi snarks, getting a well deserved kick to the shin. “You’re an evil little gremlin, you know that?” They laugh a bit. Their banter is cut short by the sight of Iida passing them with a tense ‘excuse me’.

 

“Iida.” Izuku calls out. Iida turns slowly towards him, “I know it hurts, that you’d do anything for the sake of revenge. Please, don’t do it.”

 

“I don’t think you know what you’re talking about, Midoriya.” While Iida doesn’t seem to be capable of glaring, he’s pretty close to it.

 

“You and both know I do. You’re going to Hosu to make some stupid mistake that you’ll never be able to take back.”

 

“Midoriya, I suggest that you stop.” Yet you’re not walking away. Your feet look pretty fucking glued to where you’re standing. Face it, you’re captivated by my fucking brilliant way with words, aren’tcha?

 

“If your pro hero brother was hospitalized by him, what do you think you can do? Be smart about this. If he was paralyzed from the waist down, you’ll be killed in a matter of seconds. Don’t do it.” The suitcase is knocked out of Izuku’s hands as the collar of his blazer is grabbed. He’s thrown up against the nearby pillar, near the tracks.

 

“How did you know he’s been paralyzed? That’s not public information…? You know what!? Just stop! You will not stand in my way!” The remaining classmates watch on, Toshi stops anyone who tries to step forward. He’s keeping them away so they can’t hear. “You will never know what this feels like. To be eaten away by the need for revenge.” Iida seethes, tightening his grip. Izuku, stupid as usual, can’t help but laugh a bit.

 

“You say I don’t know about revenge? Iida, there’s a story behind this scar.” Iida’s eyes widen ever so slightly. “I’m afraid you don’t know me as well as you thought. If you did, you know that I’m nothing but a thirst for revenge at this point. The things I’ve done will forever haunt me. I can never have a normal life. Tell me, Class Rep, what are you going to do when you find him? Kill him? Prove it. Prove you can kill and throw me into these tracks right now.” Iida's expression changes into pure, primal fear. It's gone as quick as it came.

 

“I-”

 

“That’d make you a vigilante, you know. At best. Most people would treat you as a villain. Are you prepared to have your friends and family hunt you down? All because you wanted revenge?” Iida’s hands drop from Izuku’s blazer. He walks away without another word. Good. Maybe you’ll change your mind. Izuku’s seen how everyone’s been tip-toeing around him. Then again, no one besides Izuku would have seen how close Iida is to breaking.

 

“Izuku, we should go.” Toshi’s voice is soft, like he’s worried of scaring his friend off.

 

“Yeah, come on.” Toshi’s carrying Izuku’s suit as well. The shuffle onto their normal train, ready to go to Toshi’s new home. We only had to pretend we were going away on internships. We’re trying to keep everything on the downlow when it comes to us living with Aizawa and Mic. Less questions. They talk about their internships, how they’ll probably see each other enough.

 

Toshi is interning with Present Mic, mainly to help with his voice and ability to project. He can also teach Toshi how to think of his quips and jokes, too. Then again, that’s more involved with him being a radio host than a hero. Face it Toshi, you just want to get to know Present Mic better because you’ve mostly dealt with Aizawa.

 

“-Still sounds like a trap.” Toshi doesn’t seem to like the idea of Aizawa taking Izuku under his wing so easily.

 

“Oh, one hundred percent.” I’m not dumb, he’s trying to get me to lower my guard. It’s already taken care of. “You say that like I’m not a step ahead already?” Toshi laughs at that.

 

“What if Aizawa anticipates that and is also a step ahead?” Izuku thinks about it a moment, wondering just how prepared Aizawa’ll be for all this.

 

“C’mon, Aizawa can’t evolve his thinking this late in the game!”

 


 

 

Shouta’s made a huge mistake asking Midoriya to intern with him.

 

They’re on their second night of patrol and Midoriya’s in his Oni costume. We figured if Midoriya starts acting up again, it’d be best to say the vigilante did it rather than a UA student. That, and this means Midoriya is free to provide back up. He has to admit that Oni is efficient. He gets things done well enough to piss Shouta off.

 

The most surprising thing is that Oni takes orders well.

 

Sure, he acts of his own accord, but when Shouta is serious, he’ll listen without question. Until they get wind of a Hero Killer sighting, they’ll patrol around the usual places.

 

He’s keeping a close eye on Oni’s condition, yesterday could have gone bad.

 

Last night, a villain with an illusion quirk cornered them. Midoriya was in his school costume, his face showing. The criminal used his quirk and began to taunt him. Midoriya’s muffled cry of ‘Mom’ broke Shouta’s heart.

 

The villain made it so Midoriya saw his mother rather than a criminal. Surprisingly, Midoriya fell into the trap. The only reason it didn’t work was because the villain called him “Izuku’. He must have seen him from the Sports Festival. After that, Midoriya immediately slipped into his vigilante mode and almost killed the villain. Shouta stepped in and had to restrain Midoriya for a good twenty minutes until he thought rationally.

 

Soon after the choice to have him strictly be Oni was made. Hopefully there’ll be no news of a first-year beating someone into a pulp effortlessly.

 

Shouta’s mildly impressed with how well Midoriya keeps up and hops from building to building. He’s been this good at it since the day Shouta was assigned to him. He must have practiced a long time to get his skill that close to Shouta’s.

 

“Mugging in the alley to my left.” Oni calls, getting a affirmative nod from Shouta. Oni drops down and out of his sight. By time Shouta joins him in the alley, everyone’s on the ground. The civilian thanks Oni and Shouta and runs off, seeming unbothered by being saved by a vigilante.

 

“You have to leave some for me, you know.” Shouta complains, getting flipped off in response. I almost forgot what a pain in the ass you can be.

 

Oni’s been involved in most underground cases the past few years. He’s managed to stay away from the media and deal with more intricate cases. Then again, the kid’s a genius. If he’s going to be breaking the law, Shouta’s glad he’s solving the harder cases. Many people are underground because they don’t have quirks suited for being in the light of the hero world. Very few are underground because they can solve the kind of horrific crimes that happen in the shadows.

 

A part of Shouta hopes Midoriya will become an underground hero for the sake of having someone else to help clean up messes. Then again, Shouta genuinely doesn’t know if Midoriya will be allowed to be a hero after all he’s done.

 

If Oni’s so familiar with the inner workings of the underground, does that mean he knows the story of All for One?

 

Shouta gets the feeling he does.

 

“What do you think Mic and Toshi are doing?” Oni asks, breaking his character and appearing more like Midoriya. It’s rare.

 

“Probably singing exercises. Hizashi’s more likely to patrol while the sun is up, because he’s probably going to make a lot of people angry if he wakes them up.” Oni laughs a bit.

 

Oni’s phone goes off, and he starts jumping around the alley.

 

“I got him! Hero Killer sighted in Hosu! Wait… why hasn’t he left Hosu? That’s stupid.” Oni’s right to be confused. Most people would move around more often if they were wanted. If Oni wasn’t such a hot topic in the country, the Hero Killer would’ve been forced to keep on his feet. Oni’s presence has given him the chance to lay low. Oni seems pissed off by that.

 

“We have to go.” Shouta confirms.

 


 

 

The next night, they leave for Hosu by train. Shouta makes sure Midoriya doesn’t have his costume on, but carries it in his case. He can change once they’re somewhere secure.

 

Since the internships have started, there’s been a video of Endeavor picking food out his teeth with one of his pens leaked, as well as videos of him publicly checking people out and creepily staring at people with powerful-looking quirks. The trial for Endeavor isn’t that far away, so Oni’s working fast to make sure there’s plenty of evidence against Endeavor. That, and videos that are sure to decrease the likelihood of the jury siding with him. The devil works fast, but apparently Oni works faster.

 

“Texting Todoroki still?” Shouta asks, not missing the obviously smitten look on Midoriya’s face.

 

“Yeah, what about it?” He snarks without looking up from his phone.

 

“Are you sure wooing his son isn’t part of your plan?” Midoriya smacks him, face completely red.

 

“I’m not wooing anyone, dipshit! We’re just friends!” I remember this phase between me and Hizashi. It’s still funny when I look back at it. A sense of second-hand dread washes over Shouta. Oh god, I ended up with a loud blond, imagine what Todoroki will think when he fully realizes that he’s with this mess. Poor kid.

 

“Ah yes, just friends. Sure.” They bicker back and forth, until the trains speakers come to life just as the train shakes.

 

“Sorry, folks! It seems we’re experiencing some difficulties. Please remain in your seats- AHHH” The announcer screams before the speaker cuts out. In the cars ahead of them, they can feel vibrations. Distant sounds of people screaming already has Shouta on his feet. The sight of Midoriya standing reminds him too much of USJ.

 

“Don’t. You’re out of costume, Midoriya.” He hisses, pushing his student back down. His goggles are pulled up as he sneaks forwards towards the sounds.

 

A large crash blows the doors open, Shouta ducks before he can be hit by a piece of metal. When he turns, he can see Midoriya tackled a woman out of the way. Good, help the people. A creature crawls forward towards them, elbows bent the wrong way with a tongue hanging on the ground. Feeling awful about the comparison, he can’t help but be reminded of Asui. A chill goes down his spine, remembering that the Nomu was confirmed to once have been a person.

 

“Nomu sightings near the Hero Killer? This doesn’t bode well.” Midoriya calls. I agree. If they’re working together, who knows what could happen. Aizawa takes on the Nomu, surprised that it’s much weaker than the one that nearly killed him. He gets tossed aside, and hears a large clanging noise.

 

Midoriya’s using his suitcase to slam the Nomu’s head against the rail of the train car. He’s putting himself in between the civilians. At first he felt grateful that the civilians are safe, but his heart aches at the sight of a child readily doing this.

 

The Nomu is becoming too disoriented to attack. There’s a small rattling sound as Shouta restrains it. A metal disk falls from the exposed brain. What the hell?

 

“It’s a tracker.” Midoriya holds up his vigilante phone for Aizawa to see that he’s picking up a signal. “Who knows what else they have in them.” Once the train is evacuated, Shouta takes his knife out the back of his utility belt and puts the Nomu out of its misery. He hopes that it’s as braindead as everyone thinks. That it wasn’t trapped in its own mind, aware of the horrible things it’s done.

 

“You’re kind of like a Nomu, Midoriya.” Shouta mumbles, getting a glare from his student.

 

“Are you calling me ugly?!” Jesus, kid.

 

“No, dumbass. I’m saying you’re both monsters under the right conditions.”

 

They’re not too far from the train station, they can walk. The two do a quick check of the remainder of the train cars to check and take count of who’s alive or not. Unfortunately, there were a few casualties, and Shouta’s disturbed that Midoriya seems unbothered by it. Once police and paramedics give them the word, they leave the train.

 

Only then are they greeted by a city on fire.



Chapter Text

Izuku sees a flying Nomu go by, taking in the sight of the city up in flames. The distant sounds of people screaming almost make him take off immediately. Eraserhead grabs his arm.

 

“Stop. We’ll go together. C’mon.” Eraserhead jumps first, leaving Izuku to follow. He’s led to an abandoned store, and Izuku is pretty much shoved inside. “Find the bathroom and change into your costume as fast as you can. We’ll get rid of the CCTV footage later.” So I DO get to be Oni for this? Good. Izuku nods and runs back to change, also grabbing an ice cream bar out the freezer. To ease my nerves, of course. There’s no signs of life in here. Did they flee when everything started to go south? Izuku trips trying to pull his costume past his feet, head hitting the floor. Wait a second.

 

There’s a tub of cleaning supplies that give him an idea. So he steals that as well.

 

When he leaves the store Eraserhead gives him a tired glare.

 

“I don’t want to know what your dumb plan is.”

 

“We’re trying to find the hero killer too! So what if-”

 

“Do you think that this chaos is orchestrated by the League for the sake of allowing the hero killer time to do what he wants?” Eraserhead asks as they run towards the madness. Izuku thinks it over, disagreeing.

 

“No, I think Stain would disagree with the League’s preaching of ‘destroy everything’ without a real reason. So this is all probably just for keep media attention off of stain on purpose. Poor Shiggy just wants the spotlight.” Eraserhead blinks before pulling his goggles up.

 

“Don’t ever call him Shiggy again.”

 

“Why? I’m just getting Shiggy with it!” A scarf reaches out and slaps him. “Oh-” They dodge a car being thrown at them, and Izuku glares at the Nomu that threw it. “You wanna fucking go?!” The heroes fighting look at Izuku.

 

“Should we capture Oni, or should we capture this thing? One’s a bigger threat to us and its not the Nomu.” A hero asks. Eraserhead steps forward.

 

“I am in charge of the Oni investigation, it’s a direct order not to capture Oni and to worry about the creatures actively trying to kill people, sound good?” Huh, didn’t take Eraserhead for the kind of person to outwardly seethe at people. The heroes say they’ll comply and worry about the bigger threat to civilians. “Oni, you look like you have a plan?” Izuku nods, grabbing a bottle of caulk out of the tub he stole.

 

“It’ll be like a man-made blood clot. I just have to get close enough to see the veins. After that you guys should have time to restrain or kill it if it has regeneration.” A part of Izuku suddenly feels sick. If Shiggy knew I was Midoriya, he’d probably want to turn me into a Nomu. Or at least kill me for this quirk.  He sighs. Too bad.

 

Izuku runs and gets in close to the Nomu, when it tries to crush him he uses his bo staff to swipe the arm away. At this point, he’s basically stalking around the Nomu until he can find a suitable vessel. Wait. Izuku can be so fucking stupid at times, it even amazes himself. The heart. He slides under the Nomu’s legs and plunges it into the Nomu’s heart, emptying its contents completely. The Nomu grabs Izuku’s arm and throws him by it, causing a small fracture.

 

It’s already healed. I can still-

 

“Iida?! Iida where are you?!” Izuku faces the sound of the noise. It’s Manual, the hero Iida’s interning with. Eraserhead looks to Izuku before they decide to run over to him.

 

“You can’t find him?” Eraserhead asks, “Iida is my homeroom student.”

 

“I knew he must’ve come here for the hero killer, but I told him no. Not to run off and do something stupid.”

 

“Does he have his phone on him?” Izuku gets a sour look from Manual.

 

“...Yes.”

 

“Oni. I’m trusting you to find Iida and bring him back alive.” Not unharmed?  “I’ll give you his phone number so you can track him.” Eraserhead gives him Iida’s number. “Manual, trust Oni on this. Don’t look like your kid’s already dead. Oni, go. Call me for back-up the moment you find Stain.” Oni nods and sprints away. He’s in one spot, no longer on the move. Who’s to say he won’t just find the body? He shakes the thought off, ready to find Iida alive and ready to yell at.

 

“-our part of the problem. You act high and mighty like you’re the solution, but then why are you being culled?” God this is going to be annoying.

 

“YoooooooHooooooo Stain, wassup, man?!” Izuku skips into the alley, seeing another hero there. Shit. I would’ve been able to grab Iida and go. There’s a sword hanging above Iida’s neck, and it lifts as Stain moves to greet him.

 

“Oni.”

 

“Staini.” He gets glared at. Maybe if I take the attention off Iida, he’ll be able to sneak away. But then… why isn’t he moving? Ugh, Stain probably already used his quirk on him. “Tell me, I thought you were against killing children?”

 

“I was. I am. This boy is no longer a child, instead he’s just another freakish hero wannabe that’ll plague society when he’s older.” Izuku rolls his eyes under his mask. “He won’t ever grow up into a right adult like you, who takes things into his own hands.”

 

“Um, Stain? I’m literally his age.” Stain’s eyes widen.

 

“Why are you here?”

 

“To get Iida. I have an order from Manual.”

 

“He sent a vigilante to get me?” Iida rasps from the ground. “Why you?! This isn’t your problem!”

 

“Maybe he sent a vigilante because he student’s turning into one. Iida, this is vigilantism.” Behind his back, Izuku has a cocktail of bleach, windex, bug spray, and hot sauce in a syringe. When he thinks Stain will attack, he’ll inject it into himself if he can’t get to Stain. He needs my blood for his quirk to work. Let’s see if ingesting a DIY poison will help.

 

“You know NOTHING of why I’m here, criminal!” Iida yells. Stain and Izuku look at each other, rolling their eyes.

 

“Iida, honey, you’re doing great but I’m going to need you to shut up a second.”

 

“Why would I shut up for a criminal my age who’s throwing his life away for stupid reasons?!”

 

“Because I no longer have a life to throw away. Besides, you’re literally doing the same thing. Stop being a fucking hypocrite.” Iida stops talking. Good, let me buy time for his quirk to wear off. While he’s at it, he sends out an SOS to Eraserhead, hopefully quirk erasure is what they need.

 

“Oni, I respect you, but you need to leave before I decide you’re scum too.” Stian warns, slinking towards him.

 

“Oh, I’ve always been scum. I thought this was a commonly known thing?” He asks, taking the time to inject himself. The painful burning is almost immediate. He’ll survive, though. Stain advances, throwing a knife at Izuku. He dodges. “Let me guess, you’re going to throw one into the air because this little one was a distraction?” He looks up, and sure enough there’s a katana. Izuku dodges that as well. “How much did all this cost you? Jesus.”

 

“I stole them. Why would I pay a government that tears people like me down?”  Izuku hums, actively trying to get under his skin.

 

“So, you’re also a bad person. You talk about real and true heroes, but have you ever pulled a Robin Hood and stole for the less fortunate?” Stain tilts his head a bit, confused. He takes a moment to try and cut Izuku, this time succeeding. He makes a sour face when licking the blood off the blade, before promptly spitting it out.

 

“The fuck is this? What are you?!” Stain sounds absolutely disgusted.

 

“I’ve been meaning to capture you, which means I know enough about your quirk.”

 

“You brat… You poisoned your own blood.”

 

“Ooo you’ve got me!” Izuku hits the ground when the paralysis takes affect. This is kind of like sleep paralysis. Except instead of demons, I get to see a gross, noseless, sweaty man.

 

“What did you just call me?” Did Izuku say that out loud? “You’re getting on my nerves. Child or not, you’re no help to me in the long run.” Stain moves to kill Izuku. That’s fine. Kill me as many times as you’d like. “You know, many people say that I have an air about me. That my very presence glues people to their spot in fear? So tell me, how do I make you feel?” Stain’s leaning down to hiss at Izuku. Too close for comfort.

 

“You make me feel like you need a breath mint, Stendhal.” While Izuku can’t fully see Stain’s face, he can clearly hear the sharp intake of breath.

 

“I haven’t been called that in a long time, kid. You know your stuff.” It’s almost a laugh, but it sounds a bit sad. “You know, I’ve been known to tell worthy people information I know. While you’re worthy, you’re still a pain in the ass. So tell me, why did some sleezeball named Hisashi Midoriya ask if I knew Oni?” ….What?

 

“I kidnapped his nephew not to long ago to make a point.” The fuck?

 

“I see. Did the boy come back unharmed?” Is going on?!

 

“Of course.”

 

“Well, I won’t be able to say the same about you.” Izuku hears the metallic noise of a blade being drawn, he also sees the shadows move accordingly. Footsteps echo throughout the alley, followed by the telltale wooshing sound of flames.

 

Wait.

 

Flames?

 

“Shouto?” Izuku calls.

 

“I would’ve been too late, try to contact me sooner.” Izuku feels heat over him, the presence of Stain is gone. “Can you move, Oni?” He’s calling me by my name. Fuck, did I accidentally send my location to him rather than Eraserhead?!

 

“No. His quirk paralyzes you if he tastes your blood-”

 

“Iida?!” Shouto calls, disbelief lacing his voice. “Are you stupid?!”

 

“Leave, Todoroki! This doesn’t involve you!” Shouto laughs at Iida’s plea.

 

“So, you are stupid. Heroes don’t just leave people to die.” Izuku can hear Stain and Shouto fighting, and he wants nothing more than to get up and fight. Okay, how can I do this. He tries moving anything small. My toes! Holy shit it’s working!  Slowly, he manages to move his whole leg, then the other. Soon, his body starts working as it should and he make it up to his feet and then-

 

Stain’s throwing a knife at Shouto. He dodges that and also the one thrown in the air. But that’s not the real weapon. Stain’s moving to impale his Shouto, and his feet move before his brain or mouth can. In an instant, he’s between them.

 

“Izu!” Shouto yells, hitting the ground and slapping a hand over his mouth. Iida’s on his feet now too, able to fully witness Izuku being impaled by the blade of a Katana.

 

Stain moves back, expecting Izuku to go down. Right, my quirk isn’t fully known to the public.

 

“Get away from my Shouto before I chop you up into bite-sized nuggets, Stain.” He seethes. In response, Stain moves to lick Izuku’s blood again, but suddenly freezes. He knows he can’t ingest my blood without it negatively impacting him. He doesn’t actually know what’s in my blood. Izuku can feel his stomach healing around the blade, so in one swift movement, he yanks it out and throws the blade back at Stain, nicking his arm.

 

“My, do you two know each other?” Stain teases.

 

“Don’t think about it, or I’ll kick your missing snout in even more.” Izuku threatens, not hearing what Iida’s yelling in the background.

 

“Oni, I’m fine.” Shouto calls.

 

“Both of you need to take Native and leave while you can. I can handle him.” Izuku instructs, being stomped up to by Iida.

 

“You don’t understand why I must do this! He tried to kill my brother. He’ll never be a hero again. Never walk again! You don’t understand what it feels like to lose family to a villain!” A knife hits Izuku in the face, tearing off part of his mask. Izuku looks to Iida, who stands with his mouth hanging in shock.

 

“I understand plenty.” With that, Shouto launches another attack, this time putting up a wall of ice.

 

The three manage to fight until Stain’s close to falling unconscious, but at the same time, it’s like Stain’s desperation it getting the best of him. Another blade is thrown towards Shouto, and Izuku’s too far to protect him from it.

 

“Todoroki!” Iida yells, pushing his classmate out of the way. There’s a loud cracking sound.

 

Along with the splatter of blood on the pavement.

 

An arm hits the ground, and all look at in it horror. Iida’s not like me. He’s not like me.

 

It won’t come back.

 

“Stain, I’m going to fucking kill you!” Izuku charges and pretends he’s going for his bo staff. As Stain focuses on Izuku’s attack, he misses how Shouto’s quietly freezing his feet in place. Stain is planted to the ground, and Izuku kicks him in the ribs hard enough to feel a crack.

 

He passes out soon after.

 

Iida’s screaming in pain.

 

“I have to cauterize it.” Shouto starts, stopping when Izuku holds up a hand.

 

“Be very careful with it. I have an idea and I need the nerves to be fine. Only do the surface.”

 

“I don’t deserve it.” Iida sobs. “I don’t-” Without listening much more, Shouto grabs his stump of an arm, and uses his hand to cauterize it, flinching at the sound of Iida's screaming echoing. Meanwhile, Stain gets tied up with a rope they find in the dumpster. Izuku sends Eraserhead his location, also sending a text briefly explaining what happened. Native decided he’ll be responsible for helping Iida move and such. Izuku makes Native turn away so he can change his mask into the spare he started carrying with him.

 

Iida knows who Oni is now. Just enough of his face was showing. Now, Iida hasn’t said a single word to Izuku. Only Shouto and Native.

 

Shouto essentially tackles Izuku into a hug.

 

“I don’t care if you’ll heal, Izu. Don’t scare me like that and take injuries for me.”

 

“But I won’t die?”

 

“You don’t always know that.” He tightens his hold on Izuku before pulling away. “I ran away from my father, saying I heard a civilian in trouble.” Izuku nods. “You didn’t mean to call me, did you?” Izuku sighs.

 

“No, I didn’t.” Shouto gives a small chuckle.

 

“You looked surprised when I showed up.”

 

“It was meant for Eraserhead.” Out the corner of his eye, he sees Iida give him a wide-eyed look. “I accidentally hit your contact. But, thank you.” The part where Izuku drones on about keeping Shouto out of his vigilante work goes unsaid. It’s a mutually understood feeling. Even if Shouto insists he wants to help. By time they make it out the alley, Eraserhead’s there with a few other pros. His eyes settle on Iida’s arm.

 

“Iida, I have a lot to yell at you for, but it can wait. The ambulance is on its way.” His eyes then move to Shouto. “Todoroki, don’t you dare get involved in his bullshit again, got it? It’s bad enough that you actually know and tolerate him.” Shouto nods, but has the faintest hint of a smile.

 

“Oni, thank you for saving my student. Bringing down Stain is a plus.” Izuku nods, getting surprised looks from the pro heroes near them.

 

“Look out!” A hero calls, they look up and see a flying Nomu heading towards them. It swoops down but passes everyone. It grabs Izuku after it seems to sniff  him. It picked me for a reason? Does it recognize my smell? That’s creepy!  It’s lanky feet dig into his ribs. Izuku looks up at it, feeling that the wings on the Nomu look awfully familiar. He looks at the wings a bit more.

 

“You know, there was this kid I grew up with who had wings too. One day he tried to fly before they were strong enough to hold his full weight. He ended up with a chunk out of one…” His eyes land on the left wing, seeing that there’s a chunk missing from the bottom. Just like he remembers. “ Tsubasa?!” Izuku feels sick. At the name drop, the Nomu makes a pained sound and releases its hold on Izuku.

 

Before he can hit the ground, a ramp of ice catches him. His breath catches, and he can do nothing to stop the fireball that hits the Nomu.

 

“Stop…” Izuku tries, unable to stop Stain from breaking free of his restraints and killing the Nomu before Endeavor can. While Izuku starts collapsing into an anxiety attack, Stain starts going on this long winded speech that he doesn’t really care for.

 

“-The only one who can kill me is ALL MIGHT! Him, and Oni. He’s not a hero, but he’s more of one than anyone else here-” Izuku’s had enough. He holds his breath and gets his bo staff, hitting Stain upside the head repeatedly. Stain hits the ground, yet again unconcious.

 

“Shut! The! Fuck! Up! You reverse Squidward-looking fucker!” Eraserhead restrains Oni, and he’s able to fall back into his anxiety attack. Before he closes his eyes, he inches closer to the lifeless body of the Nomu. He holds the Nomu’s face in his hands, recognizing it yet not.

 

Gently, he closes the Nomu’s eyes before he begins to cry.

 


 

 

Tenya has so many emotions running around inside his head, yet he feels empty. His classmate tried to warn him not to do anything, yet here he is sitting in the hospital with his classmates. He moves his hand a bit, curious.

 

Izuku Midoriya is Oni, but he saved my life. He’s a vigilante, yet he practically begged Tenya not to do anything stupid. Yet here he is, numbly watching Oni laying in a bed with Todoroki, soundly asleep. With one hand, Midoriya cradles the end of where he cut off his arm.

 

The doctors have never heard of someone donating full limbs to people before. Tenya looks down at his new arm. It’s quite a bit shorter than his own, and has less muscle mass, but it’s an arm nonetheless.

 

The doctors said if Oni didn’t have a regeneration quirk it probably wouldn’t have worked.  The medical staff admitted they had to work fairly quickly, before Midoriya's quirk no longer existed in his severed arm. They said once it was attached, the blood in Midoriya's arm altered itself to match mine. That his quirk was what joined the arm fully to my body. Tenya's also now aware that Midoriya's Analysis quirk is fake, and that he's naturally terrifyingly smart. 

 

Tenya’s heart races, trying to fight against all the painkillers currently in his body. For the first time since meeting Todoroki, he sees him smile at his friend. The smile turns softer when Midoriya wraps an arm and leg around him in his sleep. Are they…?

 

Well, Tenya supposes it’s none of his business. It’s been a eight hours since Tenya and Todoroki were brought in, and only five since Midoriya snuck in from the window, despite being well above the ground. The doctors and nurses were very wary when Midoriya approached them in his full vigilante costume and asked about donating an arm. He even asked the doctors could be the one to cut it off, for the sake of making sure enough was there for the attachment.

 

Is that why Midoriya wanted Todoroki to be extra careful with the cauterization? He thought of this the moment it was cut off.  Midoriya also insisted one waiting as long as possible for the surgery, muttering someting about poison in his blood.

 

He’s furious with Midoriya for being a vigilante, but so glad he was there to save him from both Stain and himself. If he hadn’t been there, he would’ve lost his life instead of just an arm.

 

“Todoroki.” Iida rasps, suddenly realizing everything about Endeavor must be true if his classmate is so fond of a delinquent like Oni. “Is he going to be okay?” It seems like he had some sort of mental break when the Nomu got him. Todoroki doesn’t take his eyes off of Midoriya.

 

“He insists he is, but I don’t think he’ll ever really be okay.”

 

“I’m sorry. For everything.” Todoroki looks at Tenya for split second before nodding.

 

“I forgive you, but you have many more people to apologize too.” There’s a knock on the door, and Tenya witnesses Todoroki’s face go from soft, subtle happiness, to looking uncomfortable and experiencing mild disgust.

 

The police chief, Eraserhead, and the detective from USJ walk in. Their eyes zero in on Oni sleeping, missing an arm. Eraserhead gives a barely noticeable smile at Oni latching onto Todoroki.

 

“He won’t get off of me.” Todoroki says, voice full of discomfort. I understand now. Midoriya must not want them knowing about their relationship. Tenya has mixed emotions about Midoriya now. Unsure what to do. Todoroki wakes Midoriya up, who mumbles something and turns to the adults.

 

“Ah, my two dads and a pretty puppy.” He greets, getting up and pointing what’s left of his arm at them. “Right, right, forgive me if I can’t shake your hands.” In class he’s all stutters and beyond polite. Is that all an act? Is this?

 

“Hello, Oni.” The chief greets. “Firstly, I need you all to understand what you did together was vigilantism. Not heroics. If word of this gets out, your hero careers are good as over.” He gives pointed looks to both Tenya and Todoroki. “Oni, you’ve heard this all before.”

 

“Yep.” He pops the ‘p’ on the end.

 

“Before we discuss things further, we’d like everyone’s sides of the story.” The detective asks.

 

He takes the time to privately interview all of them. Even Oni. When they come back into the room, Eraserhead whispers something to the detective.

 

“Oni, there’s something about the Nomu?” Even with the mask on, everyone can tell he probably lost color in his face. Todoroki looks close to breaking the character he has right now for the sake of comforting his loved one. Oni takes a deep breath, sitting down beside Todoroki and leaning a head on his shoulder. It’s obvious to Tenya that Todoroki is awfully close to breaking his act of ‘ew gross get away from me’.

 

“When I was a kid, there was this boy Mikumo hung out with named Tsubasa. His quirk is having wings. That was pretty much it. I was there with them the day Tsubasa tried jumping from a tree to fly. He landed on a sharp rock and it broke the bottom of his left wing. I recognized him because he picked me specifically. He let go of me when I called him Tsubasa….” A look of horror dawns on the adults in the room.

 

“Oni, you’re not implying that, are you?” The detective looks sick to his stomach.

 

“They’re not as braindead as we’ve been led to believe. They just can’t express anything we deem as human.” The room grows silent and tense. “I think… I think they’re just trapped in their minds, fully aware of what they’re doing with no way to stop it.”

 

No one speaks a while.

 

“We’ll have to contact All Might about this immediately.” Eraserhead finally speaks up.

 

“We have a few more things to settle before we leave. Firstly, the fact that two UA students teamed up with a vigilante and brought down Stain absolutely cannot stand. We considered having Eraserhead take credit, but he doesn’t want to be the one in the Media’s radar. Endeavor was considered an option to take credit, but we can’t do that considering everything surrounding him right now. In the videos the press managed to get of Stain’s final speech, Oni was the only one actively moving and being spoken to and about. As much as I hate to say it, credit for taking down Stain is going to Oni.” The detective explains.

 

“It’s already in headlines.” Oni breathes, scrolling through his phone. “Wish you would’ve asked first, the media’s annoying.”

 

“You deserve to be annoyed, you brat.” Eraserhead hisses. For some reason, Tenya can hear a lack of malice in it, some fondness that neither party acknowledge being there. Does Eraserhead know Oni is Midoriya? Surely not, because he would've put a stop to all this!

 

“Oni, I’d like to personally thank you for saving these young heroes. Not only that, but for donating your arm to this boy.” He nods in Tenya’s direction.

 

“Am I allowed to say ‘it’s what heroes do’?” Oni asks, sounding like he has a mad grin under his mask.

 

“Absolutely not.” Eraserhead hisses.

 

"However, this does not mean I condone your existence as a vigilante, woof. I will make no move to prevent your capture after this. For your service with saving these students, this hospital will be deemed a neutral ground for the time being." The Police Chief explains. The adults excuse themselves, leaving the boys to talk.

 

“Thank you, um…” Tenya isn’t sure how to refer to him.

 

“Oni. In costume you call me Oni.”

 

“Thank you, Oni. For everything. I’m sorry I didn’t listen to you.”

 

“Good. If you didn’t regret the shit you did I’d beat your ass with your own arm.” I don’t know if that was a joke. “Did you speak with your brother yet?”

 

“Yes. He was furious with me. Disappointed more than anything.” Which frankly, hurts Tenya much more. He recalls the sad sound of his brother’s voice, along with the incessant whirring of machines. Tenya wishes they were in the same hospital so he could see him. Apologize for his foolishness in person. “He’d like to speak with you.”

 

“Tell him I’ll swing by when I have the chance.” Midoriya’s arm is almost healed. Tenya’s almost mesmerized by the way it sews itself back together. They’re still sitting together on Todoroki’s bed. Midoriya’s resting against Todoroki’s left side, mumbling something about being a ‘good little space heater’. They both seem so content to just be near each other, like they’ve known each other for years.

 

“How long have you two been dating?” At Tenya’s question, Midoriya seems to choke on air.

 

Todoroki, however, bursts into flames.

Chapter Text

Shouto watches on, face completely red, as Izu jumps off the bed and pats fire off of him. Izu then grabs Shouto’s arm and throws him off the bed, putting out a fire he didn’t even realize was spreading.

 

“....I’m going to get new pillows.” Izu says, walking out. He didn’t have time to mentally prepare for the fire. God, I’m an idiot.

 

“Sorry,” He mutters to Iida. “Strong emotions make it hard to control my quirk.” Iida blinks at him a bit.

 

“I see. Sorry for catching you too off guard.”

 

“It’s fine. No, we’re not dating. Just friends.” Something about the phrase hurts Shouto to say, but he can’t figure out why. They are just friends, so why does he feel like that’s not right?

 

“Alright. Is he okay?” So, even to Iida he seemed off as he left. Shouto nods.

 

“Probably just needed a breather. He doesn’t like sitting still for long periods of time.” I want to find him. “I’m going to find him, if that’s alright.”

 

“I’m in no condition to take charge. I have to earn that back. Just be mindful of other patients and hospital policy.” Shouto nods and leaves. Before leaving the room, he sees Iida’s eyes trail down to the arm Izu donated. He’s probably wondering how he can be so sweet, like I did when I first met him. It takes twenty minutes for Shouto to find Izu, he was hiding in a janitor’s closet. His mask is off, and his eyes look almost vacant as he stares at the floor.

 

“I’m sorry-” Izu jumps when Shouto speaks, not noticing his presence earlier.

 

“It’s not you.”

 

“It was my fire, though.” Izu gives an almost breathless laugh.

 

“Not too long ago you’d never call it your fire. I’m glad I’ve made some impact.”

 

“I’m happy you did. Happy I met you.” For the first time since they started talking, Izu looks up and meets his gaze. Shouto can see the slight redness to them, and the shine of fresh tears. When Shouto sits beside him, he makes sure it’s his right side. Izu moved closer, but doesn’t lean on him like in the hospital room. He wants space, that’s okay.

 

“I’m happy I met you too.” His voice is strained.

 

“I’m still sorry. The question caught me off guard and I use my quirk when I’m embarrassed or emotional.” Izu hums softly. It’s so weird to see him go from hyperactive world-destroying threat to soft little child.

 

“Can I see your fire?” Huh?  Without questioning it too much, Shouto holds out his hand and lets a small flame dance across it. He brings it closer to Izu, who doesn’t hesitate to hover something over the flame.

 

“.....Where did you get marshmallows?” Shouto swears they weren’t in here before. Did he hide them behind his back?

 

“I planned on using you to make s’mores as a way of saying sorry for freaking out. I stole them from the break room.” it gets Shouto to quietly laugh, “I like that sound.” Shouto feels his breath catch at the sight of red dancing around in Izu’s emerald eyes.

 

“Like gems.” He mutters, slapping a hand over his mouth as Izu laughs at him. “It’s not funny.”

 

“It’s SO funny! You sound all sappy and gross!” He wheezes, getting a marshmallow stolen by Shouto as payback. They sit in a comfortable silence. “Thanks for finding me.”

 

“Stop isolating yourself when you need people.” Izu shrugs at that.

 

“It feels like isolation is all I’ve ever had.” Izu helps Shouto too his feet, and he puts his mask back on. “This whole friend thing is pretty new to me.” When they get back to the room, Iida apologizes if he said something too assuming and scared him off. They spend the rest of the night quietly talking, trying to forget everything that happened for the time being. They wanted only a small moment of peace.

 


 

 

Shouta’s been up all night dealing with the aftermath of Hosu. Stain being taken out by a vigilante might mean huge things in regards to the case against endeavor, big steps in favor of getting rid of Endeavor. Well, the case officially goes to court tomorrow, which means both Oni and Todoroki will be available to attend.

 

In regards to pro heroes, cases are vastly different than say, a murder case. The judge is only there to maintain the balance and ensure everyone gets their chance to speak. In most instances, the ‘judge’ is a person both sides can trust to be a neutral ground. It can be anyone, really.

 

Endeavor agreed to have Naomasa Tsukauchi act as the judge, as he is already up to speed with most of what happened. All Might will be present by Naomasa’s side, but Endeavor refused to have him as judge for some reason. It’s for the best, seeing as it allows the Symbol of Peace to leave whenever the public needs him.

 

In the end, Endeavor’s future as a pro hero is in the hands of the nation’s people. It’s about approval rating. If majority of the vote says he’s out, then he’s out.

 

Shouta’s glad that Oni has actually been called to play a role in the case, otherwise he could probably tamper with the votes if he wanted to.

 

After reassuring Hitoshi that Midoriya was okay, he could leave the house. While he’s aware that Todoroki knows, he’ll have to keep a charade of not knowing who Oni is in front of Iida. The poor kid would probably explode if he found out.

 

Shouta stands outside the hospital room, peering in a bit. The three boys are each in their own bed, talking softly. Has he changed out of costume at all?

 

“Yo, dad!” Midoriya calls, having already noticed him. Shouta rolls his eyes and comes in, nodding at Iida’s ‘hello, sir!’.

 

“How are you two feeling?” He asks Iida and Todoroki.

 

“I’m fine.” Todoroki looks like he wants to speak to Shouta about something important.

 

“Look, sir.” Iida beckons him over, and Shouta’s surprised. The arm looks like it’s actually his. “The doctors said his quirk matched the appearance of my arm, but that was all the quirk could do as the cells started dying.” So it integrated into his body almost perfectly? There’s a bit of scarring where they were joined, but it’s healed for the most part.

 

“Will you do physical therapy?”

 

“Yes. As well as traditional therapy. They explained that while I may not experience phantom pains or anything like that, they’re worried the arm may feel too foreign at some point. They’d just like to prevent that.” Shouta nods in understanding.

 

“Iida, this is your last night with these two in your room. We have to go somewhere tomorrow.” For a moment, Iida looks almost sad. Trauma bonds people.

 

“That’s…. Okay. I think I need time to reflect on my foolishness alone.” Across the room, Midoriya laughs.

 

“Good! You were dumb as fuck and I hope you feel nothing but regret!”

 

“Izu-”

 

“No! I tried to warn him but he did it anyways. Iida’s lucky I’m not so mean I’d keep my ever-growing limbs to myself. Limbs don’t grow on trees, you know!”

 

“You’re right,” Shouta starts, “Only tall people are referred to as trees.” At that, Midoriya launches off his bed and jumps at Shouta, only to get pinned down on the floor. “Calm down.” He throws the brat back onto his bed and sits in the chair beside it. “Oni, come back to headquarters when I text you tomorrow. Todoroki, your father will pick you up.”

 

“He can’t!” Oni whines.

 

“I don’t like it either, but Aizawa’s not wrong. As a Todoroki, I’d have to sit with my father. I wouldn’t be able to pick sides. I’m not the one the case is about.”

 

“Oh I’ll make it about you.” Great, he’s hyper. They discuss things a bit more, until Todoroki asks Shouta to speak in private.

 

They move almost across the hospital. For whatever reason, Todoroki wanted to get as far away from Midoriya as possible. For good measure, they made sure to take completely unnecessary twists and turns in case Midoriya decided to follow like the evil little gremlin he is.

 

“Are you alright?” Shouta asks once they finally stop. I’ve never known Todoroki to go out of his way for anything. Then again, Midoriya has this effect on people, Todoroki nods, looking around.

 

“Aizawa, how do you know if you’re in love?”

 

Oh.

 

This is what’s happening.  In all honesty, Shouta thought he’d have to deal with something much worse, and much more annoying than teen love. Thank God.

 

“Well, Todoroki…. If you have to ask, chances are you’re already in love. I can't tell you what it feels like or how to know, because people experience it differently.” Shouta wants to laugh at the way his student’s hair starts to catch on fire in embarrassment. “Are you going to tell Midoriya?”

 

“It’s not- It doesn’t- Why would you make such an assumption?” He only stammers for a moment before slipping back into his forcibly cold way of speaking.

 

“You’re right, forgive me.” Shouta yawns, amused by Todoroki’s constantly changing expressions.

 

“It’s obvious, isn’t it?” Shouta nods, “Does he know?”

 

“No way. Socially, he’s dumber than dirt. The kid probably only has one brain cell dedicated to processing emotion properly. You’re fine.”

 

“....What should I do?” I’m not your parent. Why am I suddenly a parent to twenty kids?

 

“Managing your relationships isn’t part of my job description. I don’t want to be responsible for any possible shortcomings.”

 

“So, you’re telling me to just figure it out on my own? I don’t have to worry about him finding out?” Shouta hums in response.

 

“So, what spurred this sudden realization?” Todoroki’s eyes drop to the floor.

 

“Iida asked how long we’ve been dating and I set the bed on fire.” Shouta has to physically turn away to keep from laughing in his student's face. I wish I could’ve seen that. After a deep breath, he turns back towards his student. “Thank you, Aizawa.”

 

“No sweat.” They walk back to their room to find Midoriya sitting on the floor while Iida yells at him.

 

“I’m plucking out all my leg hair!” Midoriya cheers excitedly. This is what one of my top students fell in love with? Dear lord.

 

“.....Why?” Shouta asks.

 

“Because I found tweezers and I’m going crazy just sitting around in here!” Midoriya sticks a leg into the air. “Feel m’leggy! It’s smooth, but only in this one specific patch. This is a long process, Eraser.”

 

“No one is forcing you to stay here.” He reminds, vaguely nodding towards the window.

 

“The hospital is a neutral ground, they said. And I want to see how my arm adapts to Iida’s body, I’d feel guilty over complications. Not to mention I’ll slit Endeavor’s throat if I see him!” Well at least he’s straightforward about it.

 

Shouta watches on as his student interacts with the other two, sometimes acting like a regular kid, but more often acting like a reckless vigilante. Shouta sighs into his scarf, hoping Hitoshi won’t be too angry at what’s going to happen at the end of Endeavor’s case.

 

After all, Shouta still has a job to do.


 

 

Shouta’s making Midoriya dress up for the case. If he has to, than everyone has to. The only exception is that Midoriya is being allowed his mask. Expected to keep it on, actually. While Oni plays a large part in everything, he is absolutely not allowed to be the main speaker for them.

 

“I’ll be watching from here.” He hears Hitoshi tell Midoriya, resting a hand on his shoulder. “Remember your manners.” For once it’s not me who has to say it.

 

“I’m not an idiot. The moment you reduce to swearing in a formal setting, your argument will no longer be taken as seriously. Swearing just comes as a part of my natural charm.”

 

“That’s not charm, that’s body odor, Midoriya.” Shouta side steps to avoid the pillow being thrown at him.

 

“You’re not a very nice father.”

 

“I’m not a father at all-” Hitoshi holds a hand up in defiance, vaguely gesturing to himself. “I’m not your father, Midoriya.” He corrects.

 

“Nice save.” Hitoshi snorts. Shouta and Midoriya start heading out the door, ready to go to a café for breakfast to go over notes. How I ended up being the one leading the case against Endeavor is beyond me.

 

Shouta doesn’t know if it’s because he’s the pro hero most involved, or if it’s because Oni’s a child. Most likely the former, considering his age isn’t actually known by the public. The patrons of the café gawk at Oni a bit, even though he’s not doing much. It’s known to the public that today’s the case, so no officers are allowed to try and apprehend him. For that reason alone, the customers settle. Today has been deemed a day where Oni is not a threat. It’s about Endeavor only.

 

Many villains may try to take advantage of this, so several heroes have given up their day off to increase patrols.

 

“Does All Might have to be there?” Oni asks once they sit in the back of the café, “He’s not really involved in this, so I don’t see the point.”

 

“Seeing as this is a case about heroes, conducted by heroes, yes. He’s needed. More by the public than by us. An underground hero no one’s heard of before you came along may not sit well with some people.”

 

“So, there’s no lawyers? At all?” Oni lifts his mask up to his nose in order to eat and drink properly. Shouta takes a sip of his coffee, shrugging.

 

“Hero problems require hero solutions. Or so the public thinks. Some instances require lawyers, sure. Like that American hero who saved someone who didn’t want to be saved and ended up getting sued.”

 

“That was a few years ago.” Oni recalls. “This is going to be a long day, huh?”

 

“A very long day, actually.”

 


 

 

It’s only an hour into the hearing, but Shouta is genuinely shocked at how well behaved Midoriya is trying to be. He can tell he’s bouncing his leg under the table, but that’s about it. He can’t imagine how fast the cogs must be spinning in that kid’s head right now. Shouta, Endeavor, and Oni have all gone up and explained their roles in all this, and now Oni’s being called up to be questioned again. The back of the room is full with onlookers and the media. People just waiting for something to happen.

 

Shouta’s worried someone will rile Midoriya up. Just enough for him to lose his cool and curse someone out. Though he knows Midoriya’s trying this hard for Todoroki’s sake. The other teen sits by his father, leaning as far away from him as possible.

 

“Oni, you’re going to tell the truth?” Tsukuachi asks, reconfirming the oath he took earlier.

 

“Yes, Tsuki.”

 

“Good. So, explain to me what your first encounter with Endeavor was and why you decided to act against him.” Shouta sees the way All Might stares at Oni, like he’s debating capturing him right now. He doesn’t understand how much is at stake right now.

 

“Well, a while back I bumped into him in an alley and he set me on fire without a second thought. I think he remembered I was wanted and his quirk did the rest-”

 

“I did no such thing!” Endeavor seethes from his seat. Shouta sees the way Oni tenses as Endeavor's flames flare up. In fact, he’s starting to shake. Shouta uses his quirk on Endeavor, feeling relieved when Midoriya no longer seems as panicked. For a kid wearing a mask, he’s still pretty expressive.

 

“Oni, do you have any sort of proof? My quirk is registering both sides of your arguments as true.”

 

“Huh, I’m really so insignificant that the mighty Endeavor doesn’t remember me? Here you go.” Mdoriya opens a briefcase he brought and hands a disk to Tsukauchi, who in turn hands it off to All Might to input it into the player in the corner of the room. “This is the CCTV footage from that moment. I even got audio.” The last line sounds a bit… smug. Like he knows the audio will drive home a point. The large screen flickers to life as All Might plays the footage. The room grows silent as the scene plays out.

 

“You don’t get to run!” Endeavor yells, whipping out an arm and throwing a ball of flame at the kid Midoriya practically screams as he throws his hands up to shield himself, allowing his suit to catch fire. The video shows Oni waving and moving to get the fire out while screaming at the top of his lungs in pain. He manages to escape Endeavor, who did nothing to help.

 

“I-I have a fear of fire now.” His voice cracks as he bows his head a bit. “It might be obvious, but this is not a memory I like to relive.”

 

“He’s telling the truth.” Tsukauchi confirms. All Might sends a disgusted look towards Endeavor. Endeavor glares at Midoriya.

 

“You didn’t even try to apprehend him normally?” All Might blurts out, truly at a loss. “Heroes don’t exhibit this kind of behavior.”

 

“All Might is right. We’re not to show a villain this kind of pain, and a vigilante isn’t the same. In this instance, it’s as if you used your quirk on a civilian, completely unprovoked.”

 

“He’s Japan’s most wanted vigilante.” Endeavor tries.

 

“Yes, but he has several copycats running around. This could have been a random person and you never bothered to check.” Tsukauchi gives Oni a tired but sorry look. They keep asking questions, allowing Midoriya to talk about why he began pranking Endeavor and how he’s seen Endeavor treat civilians. Every point Endeavor attempts to deny, Midoriya has physical evidence to show.

 

Every time Midoriya speaks, Tsukauchi can verify it’s the truth.

 

“So, Oni, what caused you to change your tactics when it came to Endeavor? Suddenly, it seemed you got more brutal and forward with your dislike of him.” That’s right, to the public it seems like his increase in anti-Endeavor activity was random.

 

“I met Shouto.” That gets the crowd of people talking, looking to Endeavor’s son in question.

 

“You what?” Endeavor asks, sounding genuinely confused.

 

“I’m your son’s best friend.” As Oni answers, Shouta feels a small smile at the look of utter bewilderment that settles on All Might’s face.

 

“Shouto Todoroki, is this correct?”

 

“Yes.” Todoroki agrees.

 

“Now, isn’t there an issue of a grown man hanging out with my child in secret?” Endeavor’s trying to flip it against Oni. Oni laughs in his seat, apologizing for his laughter.

 

“Father, Oni is my age.” The people all stop talking.

 

“True.” Tsukauchi confirms, “Oni is Todoroki’s age. We’re aware of this, and trying to handle it delicately before any one questions. Until further notice, Shouta Aizawa is acting in place of a legal guardian.” Tsukauchi nods to Shouta, who nods back in acknowledgement and ignores the glare Endeavor sends him.

 

“And how do we know that Oni isn’t threatening my son into his friendship in order to benefit him today?” Endeavor asks. Well, it is a valid worry.

 

“Todoroki?” All Might asks, no doubt worried for his student.

 

“I’m not being brainwashed. I’m the one who sought out Oni. I’m the one who wanted to be in his life.”

 

“True.”

 

“It’s ringing as true because this no-good vigilante is forcing you to believe it’s true, Shouto!” His father’s voice is booming. Every adult near them sees the way Todoroki flinches back at the raising of his voice.

 

“Don’t yell at him.” Oni warns, “He’s done nothing to provoke you. For once in your miserable life, just leave your son alone.”

 

“You’ve brainwashed him into thinking he cares about you! Why would I listen to anything that comes out of your pathetic mouth?”

 

“Father, he didn’t brainwash me into anything. What I feel for him is of my own choice and because of my own actions. Don’t talk about him like that. Berating a child is even more pathetic.”

 

“There’s no way to prove that you’re not just being threatened to speak so highly of this trashy criminal! Even with this detective’s quirk there is no real way to tell your actions are sincere!” Before All Might and Tsukauchi can interrupt this argument, Todoroki stands.

 

“Oh for the love of God.” Todoroki mumbles as he storms up to where Midoriya is being questioned.

 

“Shouto, what are you-” Endeavor’s interrupted by his son climbing some of the small steps, reaching over the bench and grabbing Midoriya’s shoulders. Midoriya makes no move to stop him as he reaches over and raises the boys mask to his nose.

 

No one moves.

 

No one speaks.

 

On every screen in Japan, a UA student and son of pro hero Endeavor kisses Japan’s most wanted vigilante in order to prove a point.

Chapter Text

Shouto didn’t realize what he was doing until he did it. The feeling of anger made him move on autopilot and do the first thing that came to mind.

 

He’s very happy that Izu’s not pushing him away. Then again, Izu’s having absolutely no reaction. He leaned in a bit, sure, but that was all he did. The moment he pulls away, Izu begins stuttering.

 

“On…. On-On national…. National television-” Aizawa’s already out of his seat as the vigilante faints, hitting the back of the chair. The room is silent.

 

“Todoroki….. Would you like to explain why you did that?” Detective Tsukauchi breaks the silence, giving him a gentle but genuinely confused look.

 

“My father wouldn’t listen to me. I did something that would get everyone’s attention. It worked.”

 

“Kiddo, you’re smoking.” He gestures to Shouto, who is in fact using his fire by accident. He cuts it out and saunters back to his seat, returning his father’s glare. Attention returns to the vigilante, who remains unconscious.

 

“He got so shocked that he tried using his quirk, even though he’s already healed. It made him overheat and pass out. Much like how Todoroki uses his quirk when emotional.” I made him so flustered he passed out?  While Shouto knows he should feel bad about it, or that he should regret doing it on live television, he doesn’t at all. In fact, he feels happy.

 

“Young Todoroki, are you and Oni in a relationship?” All Might speaks up.

 

“No. I just really like him. I kissed him so you would all see that I do things of my own accord, I’m not brainwashed by him. I’ve never been.”

 

“True.” The detective confirms, smiling a bit. Aizawa picks Oni up and carries him back to their seat. “It seems you put Oni out of commission for a while, so I suppose it’s a good time to get your side.” Shouto nods and heads up to where Izu was sitting.

 

“Tell me, why do you support Oni.” All Might asks.

 

“He was the first person I’ve met outside of my family who also hated Endeavor.” The crowd murmurs. “Everyone sees him and assumes this is all a tough-guy act or something.” Shouto makes sure to look his excuse of a father in the eyes as he says this, “No one stopped to consider that he might be abusing his own family as bad as the villains.”

 

“.....If you’re comfortable, please explain what you mean in full detail. Do not fear for your safety.”

 

“Ok-”

 

“As my son, he’s not allowed to speak without his parent’s permission, and I have yet to give it.” Endeavor interrupts. “He’s a minor and therefore must listen to me.” Shouto can see Aizawa visibly shaking, eye twitching ever so slightly.

 

“Endeavor, this is not the first time you have scared a minor, may I remind you.” Aizawa seethes, looking a little less intimidating with Oni practically draped across his lap. I wonder when he’ll wake up.

 

“What do you mean, Eraserhead?” Tsukauchi asks.

 

“During the Sports Festival, for whatever reason, Endeavor was found in restricted areas meant for faculty and students only. He was looking for my intern, Izuku Midoriya. Upon seeing Endeavor acting threateningly towards a child, he started to spiral into a panic attack until I stepped in.” My father did what?

 

“It’s the truth,” The detective confirms, “Endeavor, why were you seeking out a child that is not your own?”

 

“I wanted to speak with him about ensuring he gave his all against Shouto.”

 

“True.”

 

“Very well, but that does not excuse the fact that you violated UA’s rules.  The events that took place after the Sports Festival have led us here today, and Oni brought up that Endeavor may or may not be abusing his family. For this reason, Shouto is allowed to speak and say whatever he wishes without restraint. A child’s safety is above your own.” All Might explains, giving Shouto a kind smile. He takes a deep breath.

 

“Oni brought up the fact that my father is abusive, because I’m the one who told him about it. He’s been abusing me while calling it training since my quirk manifested.”

 

“Since you were four?” Tsukauchi asks, for solid numbers.

 

“Three actually, my quirk was strong enough to manifest a little early. I don’t remember much, but what I do is never pleasant. He’d throw his flames at me and blame me if I couldn’t get ice up fast enough to block.” Out the corner of his eye, he sees Izu sitting up, and Aizawa very softly speaking to him. He turns to Shouto and gently puts a hand over his mouth. “He’d beat me into throwing up, until I couldn’t speak because of how my throat hurt from screaming.”

 

Shouto’d say everyone here is holding their breath. Izu leaps up from his seat, immediately being restrained by Aizawa. Izu shakes in his seat, radiating pure fury.

 

“Oni, it’s okay.” He gets Izu’s attention immediately. “It’s okay.” His friend settles back into his seat, giving a rigid nod. “Once I came along, he stopped training my brother, Touya. After ‘training’ him and breaking him, and then suddenly being thrown away…. I think something happened. He left and I haven’t seen him since. Oni has told me he became a villain and that doesn’t surprise me at all.” The crowd starts talking again. “My mother is locked up in a hospital. She snapped too, and poured boiling water over the left side of my face after she said I looked too much like him.” He touches his scar, so familiar yet it’ll always feel a little foreign. He wouldn’t mind the scar so much if it were from something he felt made it worth it.

 

“Are you alright?” All Might asks. Shouto looks down, doing something Izu taught him ahead of time. When he looks back up, he looks into the camera as he begins to cry.

 

“No, All Might. I’m not.” He forces himself to sob, trying to keep it realistic. He’s never been much of a crier, but after seeing what a crybaby Izu is, he’s got a handle on faking it. He’s handed tissues as he’s allowed to sit back down. The cameras stay on him, allowing the glare Endeavor shoots him to be seen clearly.

 

“Oni, are you okay now?” Tsukauchi asks.

 

“Getting there. It’s just, you know…. Having my first kiss in front of millions was something I wasn’t mentally ready for- NOT that it was a bad thing. Just spooked me a bit.” It was his first kiss too? I guess it makes sense, with his life.

 

“Are you able to come up and talk about Touya?” Izu nods and waddles up to the chair, “I understand you have some information from him?” His friend nods, handing over another disc. Once in, it plays. The man on screen has his face covered, to hide his identity. As well as a voice changer.

 

“Hello, father. It’s Touya, in case you forgot your former successor that failed.” He starts. Shouto feels the hair on his arms rising. This man is supposed to be his brother, yet he feels nothing. He doesn’t know what he would even feel. “Oni here told me I should state a few things so the Todoroki family can confirm it’s me. First, Mom is locked up in a hospital for pouring the kettle on Shouto.” Tsukauchi heard Shouto say it already, confirming. “Second, Enji, you tried to teach me one of your super moves and it led to me being hospitalized for four months.” The video’s paused.

 

“...True.” His father confirms reluctantly. He’s becoming more aware that lying will only get him further from winning.

 

“-When Shouto was being, ahem, trained by this dickbag, I was thrown away. Pro heroes, do you know what it feels like to suddenly have a vacation after patrolling every day for years? That’s what I felt. It was the first thing this old geezer instilled in me. This feeling of being useless the moment I stopped moving started eating me alive. Until I found a way to get rid of the feeling. Apparently, it doesn’t matter if I do good or bad for this fucked up society. As long as I keep moving, I’m okay. Something I never thought I’d be under your ever-so watchful eye. Shouto, I’ve seen the way you and my vigilante friend act together. You have a good friend and ally in him. Please trust him more than our father.” The video stops.

 

“Oni, you know this villain yet never turned him in?” Tsukauchi asks with a tired expression, raking a hand through his hair. Shouto can tell everyone might have to take a break soon.

 

“He said he’s a villain, and that he’s done horrible things, but I have zero proof and I have no idea if he’s wanted.” Izu shrugs, being released from Aizawa’s restraints.

 

“You’re telling the truth. You can’t get in trouble for that, at least.”

 

The group continues on, without a break. It’s nearing the end, now that all the facts are out.

 

“Okay, we’re going to open the polls, both online and real. We’ll break for two hours before releasing the results. That is all.” The groups are being allowed to go to the different break rooms set up for them. The only rules in place are to keep Endeavor and Izu away from each other, and now to keep Endeavor and Shouto away from each other. Shouto feels the smallest of smiles tug at his lips. I guess it works out.


 

 

Naomasa waits until Oni and Todoroki are led away by Aizawa to address everyone else. Toshinori stands by his side, not yet informed of what’s to happen.

 

“What is this about?” Endeavor seethes. The crowd of reporters and civilians agree with the question.

 

“Oni is a wanted vigilante. We have him in a secure location. We will take him into custody. All Might, do what you must. Endeavor, if your license is revoked, this act will be considered your last heroism. Civilians, for your own safety, I suggest you leave now and watch from home. Reporters, well, you have your camera’s off now but…. I suggest you also leave for your safety. Camp outside the windows if you must. Just do not tell Oni. It will be considered an obstruction of Justice and will see you a large fine or even jail time. Do I make myself clear?”


 

 

Izuku sits on the floor next to Aizawa, mask off now that he’s in a room with only him and Shouto. I just need a breather.

 

“Are you sure I’m not interrupting anything?” Aizawa asks, looking between his two students.

 

“No, sir. We’re okay.” Shouto reassures, looking to Izuku to give a nod. I thought I’d be more freaked out, but I’m okay. I think it felt so natural that I can’t think of it as something new. Maybe it’s shock.

 

“We’re fuckin’ dandy!” Izuku cheers, getting slapped upside his head by Aizawa. “Dad, that’s abuse.”

 

“My words exactly.” Shouto deadpans, getting a shocked snort from Izuku. His face feels hot when he meets Shouto’s eyes. Okay, maybe it was shock and it’s slowly setting in.

 

“I can’t believe I passed out.” He hides his face in his hands in embarrassment. “My cool guy image is ruined.”

 

“It was cute.” Shouto admits, smiling at how red Izuku gets.

 

“You short circuited. Literally. I could see your quirk factor was switched on but you didn’t have any injuries. You were burning up when I got to you.” Thank you, Bill. I really need the science of me fainting on national television. Izuku’s phone buzzes in his pocket. Toshi’s calling me? He gets up and walks to the other side of the room to answer it.

 

“Hey, Toshi, what’s going on?”

 

“Izuku, you know how we planted cameras in the building beforehand?” Izuku tries not to show expressions, suddenly mad he’s not wearing his mask.

 

“Yeah?”

 

“The media was ordered to turn off all cameras, but I got footage of what was said. They’re going to trap you in and try and capture you. Everyone’s being ordered to leave so you can’t take hostages.” Izuku hums, thinking this over. I thought they might pull some dumb stunt like this. “Also, I immediately saved the video of you fainting. Your unconscious body is currently my phone’s background.

 

“Toshi!” He whines, “Oh you’re so very lucky I like you.” Toshi laughs on the other end of the phone. Eraser keeps trying to watch me. You knew this whole time, didn’t you? You’ve been trying to get my guard down this whole time huh?  “Do you know who else is going to be there? Just our class?” He adds on something random to throw Eraserhead off.

 

“I get what you’re doing. They plan on having a few troops of the Quirk-focused Special Forces come in through both the front and back of the building. Media will be parked outside the window. Do you have an earpiece with you?”

 

“Yeah, I do. I’m exhausted. Why does it sound like you’re not with Mic right now?” It sounds like he’s outside, and he wouldn’t say all this with Mic around.

 

“I offered to go and pick up some takeout. Ask Aizawa what he wants.” Just call him Dad already.

 

“Yo, Eraser.” Aizawa’s eyes snap to him, as if he hadn’t been trying to eavesdrop. “Toshi said he’s picking up dinner, what do you want?” For a brief moment, a look of something close to sadness comes over Aizawa’s face, it’s immediately wiped away.

 

“The usual.”

 

“The usual.” He repeats.

 

“Great, got it. I’ll make sure to get yours too. Bring it back to the apartment?” Izuku hums an affirmative note. “Are you upset they’re doing this to you?”

 

“No. I knew something like this would happen. It’s okay.” Aizawa’s eyes widen a bit. “I mean, all this press attention on me is so fucking annoying! I just want to go home already.”

 

“I know you’re trying to throw Aizawa off and all, but it still sounds weird.” Toshi laughs. “Well, put your earpiece onto the default channel and I’ll let you know when everything’s going to go down.”

 

“Sweet, don’t forget the extra sauce! See you at home!”  He doesn’t miss the way Aizawa winces when he calls it ‘home’. The sound of voices in the hall startle him into scrambling back over and putting his mask on. Aizawa and Shouto move to delay the door, and Izuku takes the time to slip an earpiece in before putting the mask on.

 

“What’s with you two?” Tsuki asks, walking in with All Might.

 

“Facially, I was naked.” He admits. All Might scrunches his nose at him a bit as Tsukauchi sighs.

 

“We were going to knock.”

 

“I can’t be too sure of that.” Izuku snarks. “Hey, All Might.” the Symbol of Grease looks at him with a shocked expression, before giving a small wave. I’d tell him he can deflate, but he doesn’t know that Oni knows, and Shouto doesn’t know.

 

Shouto sets a hand on Izuku’s shoulder, giving a light squeeze before he leans in a bit.

 

“I’m going to take a walk, and get some food. I’ll bring you back some.” With that, Shouto leaves the room. He read what I was thinking that easily? Holy shit, my heart.

 

“Well, if you guys are going to babysit, you can come in and close the door. Shouto gave us space on purpose.” Izuku explains, gesturing widely to the open room.

 

“R-Right.” All Might mumbles, watching him like a hawk on crack. Huh, Hawks on crack. That’s a nice thought-

 

“Pay attention.” Aizawa nudges him harshly with an elbow. “Tsukauchi was speaking.”

 

“Right, dad. Okay. Tsuki?”

 

“Oni, I want to thank you for trying to behave for this. It actually does mean a lot to us.” Izuku hums.

 

“You’re welcome then, also, All Might?” The man startles. Why are you so jumpy?  “You can you know…. Deflate. I know about it. No use wasting time.” All Might’s eyes widen as he gapes, but deflates anyways.

 

“How do you know?” All Might’s voice has an edge to it.

 

“I’m a sneaky little fuck, what can I say? Don’t worry, I haven’t told anyone. I don’t think the world can handle that news at the same time as Endeavor’s downfall.”

 

“I suppose you’re right.” He trails off. “You know, I have half a mind to apprehend you right here.” Why do you sound like you’re scolding me? Aizawa steps in between the two.

 

“You are not part of the Oni investigation, and therefore are not authorized to. You may capture him on your own time. This is not the time nor place.”

 

“He kidnapped your student!”

 

“Oh, so this is about Izuku Midoriya? I barely touched the kid! I just wanted to make a point, and I did.”

 

“Kidnapping a UA student and fancying another is very frowned upon as a vigilante." Izuku’s gotten better at dealing with All Might. Maybe there’s something about being in the suit that makes him feel better? Hiding his face from the one man who can end his career as a vigilante. All Might is tied to so much trauma, he wonder how the man would feel if he knew how responsible he was for Oni?

 

“Technically, Shouto’s the one who’s fancying me. I’ve already said it. I only wanted Midoriya so I can find his uncle.”

 

“Why?” All Might questions. Tsukauchi and Aizawa glare at him. While he’s not a part of the investigation, if Oni wishes to spill the beans, there’s nothing stopping him.

 

“Can’t say. You’re not a part of the investigation.” Surprisingly, All Might isn’t as hostile as he thought he’d be. Until it clicks. Izuku huffs out a bitter laugh.

 

“What?” Aizawa asks, concern lacing his voice.

 

“All Might doesn’t want to fight me. He doesn’t see the point in fighting me.”

 

“What do you mean?” Tsuki asks once he realizes All Might’s gone quiet.

 

“He knows I’m Shouto’s age. He doesn’t see me as much of a threat anymore because he knows I’m a kid.”

 

“All Might?” Aizawa asks.

 

“He’s a child!” All Might sighs, “What am I supposed to do?!”

 

“He’s Japan's most wanted vigilante. We do whatever takes to bring him in alive. Those are our orders. Regardless of his age.” Yet you two have also been known to hesitate because of my age. Maybe Izuku can use this to his advantage.

 

“I take it you three need to talk.” Izuku pipes up suddenly. “I’m going to find Shouto. You can take this room to use. I know not to leave the building.” With that, Izuku leaves.


 

 

Once everyone’s back in the courtroom, Izuku has to act like he doesn’t know why the room is emptier. It’d be more suspicious for me not to ask. He leans over.

 

“Eraser, why is everyone gone?”

 

“They had to vote too.” He explains without missing a beat. I hope they’re at least voting if they were kicked out. This time, All Might is going to read the results, with Tsuki being the one hanging back a bit. Shouto is on the left side of Endeavor this time, making it easier to get to Izuku.

 

“Izuku, sneeze if you can hear me.” Toshi asks through the earpiece. He does as told, getting an ‘ugh’ from Eraser. “Good. They plan on announcing Endeavor’s results and then immediately going after you. They want to catch you off guard. Your best bet for an escape is the window to the right of you and Aizawa. They will hesitate to pull full attacks if you use human shields. Then again, they probably accounted for some sort of struggle. Toshi goes quiet as they begin speaking.

 

“We gave the allotted time to vote, and I thank every citizen for their support and effort.” All Might smiles at the camera, looking at the envelope in his hands. “Before the results of Endeavor, we must state one thing. Regardless of weather or not Endeavor can remain a hero, we have decided that he cannot be a parent.” YES! This makes it all worth it. “It is decided that custody of Shouto Todoroki will be given to his elder sister, Fuyumi. Endeavor will, however, still be responsible for all funds towards his child.” Izuku’s grinning so hard it hurts. “Now, as for Endeavor himself.” There’s a pause as All Might takes the results out of the envelope. “Endeavor, it is decided that for the time being, you will not be a pro hero. You license will be revoked until further notice.” Endeavor’s physically shaking, before he glares at Izuku. The moment Izuku starts to shake, a hand goes to his shoulder. Aizawa then erases Endeavor’s quirk.

 

“Sir, no illegal quirk use.” Aizawa says with a teasing tone, making Izuku slap a hand over his mouth to keep from laughing. Who knew you could have a sense of humor?!  I almost forgot you also wanted his license revoked.

 

“Endeavor, as your last service as a pro hero-”

 

“Izuku, it’s now.” Toshi hisses.

 

“-You may join us in the official capture of Oni.” The doors break down as Special Forces flood in. I came prepared. The moment Aizawa moves to grab him, he uses a taser on him. As Eraserhead seizes up, he takes his capture weapon.

 

“My taser!” Tsukauchi yells. It was pretty easy to pickpocket you when I left the room. He’s on his feet, using the capture weapon on a Special Force member and pulling him. They shoot at Izuku, grazing him. Right, they can’t kill me.

 

“You l-learned how to use my... my weapon?” Aizawa slurs a bit, trying to push himself to his feet. All Might and Eraserhead hesitate to move. He’s surrounded in seconds with only one hostage. Shouto remains in his seat, knowing to leave this to him.

 

“I learned when you first started the investigation. What, did I not tell you?”

 

“Izuku, I’m going to cause a disruption. Stall.” Toshi’s voice cuts in.

 

“Let the man go, Oni.” All Might warns.

 

“Mango? You talking about fruit? Personally, I like strawberries-” All Might moves towards him in a rage. The Special Forces part. “You’re going to hit a child.” He reminds, almost howling at how fast All Might stops. Aizawa moves behind him, getting restrained by his own weapon and hurled across the room. Izuku must admit, he really likes this weapon. The way the cloth can snap rigid in a flick of his fingers like a slap bracelet amazes him.

 

“Enough of this!” Endeavor throws a ball of flames at Izuku with no regard for the hostage. Izuku curses and dives, covering the hostage and barely missing the flames. Fuck. Don’t freeze. Don’t- All around them, Sirens blare. Everyone’s phones go off at once.

 

“Izuku go!” Toshi yells. Izuku scrambles towards the window, getting shot in the leg by an officer. As he kicks the glass in, he jumps, making sure to wave for the dozens of cameras on him.

 

“Endeavor STOP!” All Might yells behinds him, before there’s a sudden shift in the air as Izuku takes off down the street. Only seconds before his world is swallowed whole by pain.

 


 

 

Katsuki watched the stupid case. Endeavor can’t be a hero because he abused Todoroki. That, he gets. He shivers, wondering if it meant the same for him with the way he treated Deku? He saw the dumb fuck tase their teacher before taking a hostage. He’s gotten to use to thinking of Deku as useless that this new reality has yet to fully set in.

 

He watched with no words as Deku went up in flames.

 

His scream pierced through the air and ate away at Katsuki’s heart even though he wasn’t the one who caused it. The most surprising thing about all this is the fact that the Deku actually fucking made it away. Several pro heroes and Special Forces couldn’t find him.

 

It was later revealed that Deku was shot with quirk suppressant-laced bullets, so they don’t know if he’s even alive at this point. Endeavor was taken away to the police station until further notice for denying orders and ignoring the hostages.

 

Apparently, they were supposed to inflict as little harm as possible because of his age.

 

Katsuki shouldn’t give a fuck about everything that happened, yet he needs to know if the nerd’s alive. Any sign he hasn’t gone and kicked the bucket would do. Why else would he be walking around this shitty area at night? He checked Deku’s fucked up house and didn’t see him there, so he’s walking around aimlessly. Not knowing if he’ll just find a corpse.

 

Those flames were so fucking hot they were blue. The hell is Endeavor’s problem?! As Katsuki grumbles, he walks. Only, he stops when he gets to a familiar path.

 

Are you okay, Kacchan?

 

God! I can’t get his fucking voice out my head. Maybe when this is over he can hang out with Shitty Hair to keep his mind off it. He’s gotten used to his constant blabbering. Katsuki climbs down to walk along the water, stopping where he fell all those years ago. His breath catches when he shines his flashlight.

 

“K-K… Kacc...han?”

Chapter Text

Hisashi watches the screen, smiling so wide it hurts. He almost forgets to hold the gun against the Commissioner General’s head. The man in question trembles, eyes closed as he watched the child go up in flames.

 

“This is why I gave you that order.” Hisashi sneers, playfully tapping the man’s temple. He used a favor and got someone with a warp quirk take him to the office of the Chief of the National Police Agency.

 

“Wh-Which order?” He’s got a point there.

 

That no matter the outcome of the case, you tell that pesky detective that Endeavor must be allowed to go after Oni.” As a result, they’ll face backlash for allowing the person who’d have the most anger towards the vigilante to go after him. Hell, he even ignored the hostages! Hisashi chuckles a bit, thinking back. It’ll ruin some trust towards the police, and more towards Oni. With luck, it’ll lead that brat straight to me. For whatever reason, he wants me. Well, I’ll make him regret it.

 

“There’s no way that kid survived. You made me responsible for a child’s death.” The Commissioner General sounds like he’s crying out of anger.

 

“You’re forgetting that he’s the biggest thorn in your side as an agency. He’s wanted. Not to mention, you’re being paid to allow this to happen. The gun is insurance. I needed Oni out of commission for a while.” I had Endeavor wrapped around my finger and playing into my game without even realizing it!

 

“You could have let the Quirk Special Forces handle it, my men are very well trained.” Hisashi hums, thinking over if he had used them fully.

 

“No. Allowing Endeavor to lose his mind is the best option. He’ll never be trusted again. It’ll put more pressure on All Might to pick up the slack and run him into the ground.” The man’s eyes widen.

 

“You’re using me to take down the Symbol of Peace?”

 

“No. No. I do business with the League, they’d appreciate it if I helped with their goal as well. I’m solely focused on making as much money as I possibly can. If something’s bad for business, I get rid of it.” Like Inko and that quirkless brat.

 

That’s one thing that gave Hisashi quite a shock.

 

He was sitting in his office watching the Sports Festival, when he saw a kid named Izuku Midoriya waltz up to the microphone to speak. Inko was an only child, and Midoriya was Hisashi’s last name. Besides, Hisashi could look at that boy and see the same kid he and Inko tried to raise together.

 

A boy that should be dead.

 

In fact, Mikumo had an autopsy and everything. Hisashi made sure of it. So why is his son running around with a fake name? Why is his son somehow involved with the Oni investigation that even he can’t fake the clearance to get into? Hisashi heard that even All Might himself can’t get the clearance, but his stupid brat can? He’s not actually quirkless. Hisashi only knows that he has an intelligence quirk, and by the looks of it from the Festival, it’s amazing. If Mikumo wasn’t smart enough to convict Hisashi of his crimes, he might consider kidnapping him and forcing him to do the analytics of his business. He’d be rich.

 

In the end, he’ll just have to kill his son himself. Make sure he’s dead, seeing as it somehow didn’t succeed the first time. Well, it’s a good thing the League is planning something that’ll give him the perfect chance to.

 


 

Shouta can’t get the screaming out of his head. The smell out of his nose. He’d never admit that his hands are shaking too much to text Hizashi back. He ran out after Midoriya the second he caught on fire, just so he could put him out. The kid kept screaming and running. Within minutes, all heroes lost sight of him. For all they know, he could’ve gone down in a random alley and bled to death.

He sits on the roof of the court house, missing the weight of his capture weapon around him. He took it with him. Shouta wants nothing more than to go out and find Midoriya, but until he’s given the word by his higher-ups here, he’s stuck. He glares at the bandages around his leg. Endeavor pushed aside an officer while they were aiming, resulting in a bullet grazing his leg. Just enough quirk suppressants made it into his system, and he couldn’t stop Endeavor. The feeling of being useless still sits with him.

 

I was never told Endeavor was going to be part of the capture. It’s illogical. It’s a deathwish. Yet they still did it. That’s why Shouta made the ‘illegal quirk use’ joke in the first place. Officer’s had to pry Shouta off of Detective Tsukauchi, threatening to jail him as well. The look in Tsukauchi’s eyes was a haunted one as well, and Shouta gets the feeling there’s more to this.

 

There’s no telling what Hitoshi will say when he gets home. What he’ll do to make sure his best friend’s okay. If it were Shouta in his place, he’d tear up the country in order to make sure Midoriya’s okay. Well, he won’t go that far, but he’ll do anything. He’s a problem child, but he’s still his student at the end of the day. A fucking child.

 

“Leave me alone.” Shouta hisses at the sound of footsteps approaching.

 

“Young Aizawa, I have some information you might like.” All Might keeps his voice soft, but he sounds like he’s close to breaking as well. Without waiting for permission, All Might comes over and sits besides him, swinging his legs over the ledge like Shouta. He’s in his powered-down form. “I’d like to be a part of the search teams, but my time today went to the trial and towards subduing Endeavor.”

 

Shouta merely grunts as a response.

 

“I don’t know what the relationship you and Oni have, but it’s clear there’s a lot more going on than I know. I understand that now. What Endeavor did was unacceptable.”

 

“All Might, Oni is a UA student.” From his goggles, he can see All Might tense, eyes tearing into him as if he could get more information from his body language. “It’s top secret information and you are not to tell a soul about it. That’s why no one has been able to get proper clearance. Not even Nedzu knows.”

 

“....Oni is a UA student… That’s…” All Might’s at a loss for words, as he should be. “Does Midoriya know he’s a UA student?”

 

“Yes. Me, Midoriya, and Tsukauchi know. No one else. Midoriya joined the investigation because he’s key to finding evidence against Oni.”

 

“His quirk is handy for detective work.” Yeah, sure. Not because Midoriya was the one who was set on fire. God, the nightmares that kid’ll have.

 

“All Might, what did you want to tell me.” Shouta asks, trying to figure this shit out.

 

“Right, sorry. I was asking Naomasa why Endeavor was allowed to participate regardless of what happened and he said he received the order from the Commissioner General himself. Said that Naomasa’d lose his job on the spot if he kept Endeavor from going after Oni. It sounded like the CG wanted Endeavor to go after Oni.”

 

“That can’t be right-”

 

“It’s true, Eraserhead.” Tsukauchi calls from behind, before having a seat next to All Might. “I received the emails about it, then became so shocked that I had to call him and confirm someone didn’t hack into his email. It’s true. His voice sounded strained. I should’ve gone in person so I could use my quirk.” The sit in silence for a while. Each second that ticks by, Shouta feels more restless. Useless. He’s on his feet and storming towards the door. “Eraserhead, you’re in no condition to go after him-”

 

“I’m not going home without him.”


 

Toshinori stares at the door Aizawa slammed behind him.

 

“He’s not going home without him?” Toshinori asks his dear friend for explanation.

 

“Eraserhead and Oni are kind of like father and son at this point. It’s been his way of keeping tabs on the vigilante and preventing him from patrols until we can get evidence to prove his identity.”

 

“You’re saying you know who he is?” Toshinori asks, wondering just how complex this all is.

 

“We do. We just need the evidence to prove it. Oni knows if we try and use just our word, it’s useless. He’ll remain free. And before you ask, no, I cannot tell you who he is. That actually needs clearance for me to discuss. Without evidence, at least.” The Symbol of Peace hums thoughtfully.

 

“Young Aizawa basically watched his child be hunted down and tortured, in a way.” Naomasa nods his head. My, this is going to be quite the headache. “These orders you received are why Endeavor never had to wear quirk restraining cuffs? I thought it was odd.”

 

“Yes, it was. I wasn’t allowed to do anything restrictive. Technically speaking, I wasn’t actually supposed to warn against lethal intent. The Commissioner General has yet to acknowledge that, though.” Toshinori thinks about this a very long time. It’s rare that for someone with such a high title gives orders for something like this. Yes, Endeavor was the number two hero, but it still feels a bit of a petty thing to give orders for.

It’s interesting, for lack of a better word.


 



Katsuki runs towards the body laying halfway into the water. He could’ve fucking drowned. He pulls Deku out, trying to ignore the smell of his burnt flesh and the way the open wounds stick to him. Deku holds a hand out to him, ready to give something.

 

Curious, Katsuki extends a hand. A necklace drops down into his hand, looking unharmed. He wanted to keep it untouched.

 

“Deku, what is this?” He asks uncharacteristically soft.

 

“Mom’s.” He croaks, not trying to use a broken voice too much. “Keep safe.”

 

“Oi, you say that like you’re going to fucking die.” With that, he puts aside his worry and hoists Deku up into his arms, carrying him back to his own home. The Old Hag and Pushover are probably asleep. If not, his habit of loudly screaming if he’s home or not has made it much easier for him to sneak in and out of the house. His skin is hot as fuck. Deku’s face remains untouched, for the most part. It’s mostly his back and legs that got the worst of it.

 

“Suit was… fireproof.” That means Endeavor got so hot it burnt through the fireproof material?

 

“Stop talking, Deku.” He hisses, seeing from down the street that his house’s lights are off. Good. Once at the front steps, he tells Deku to stay quiet or he’ll kill him.

 

Instead of bringing Deku to his room, he brings him straight to the bathroom, sitting him down in the bathtub. He makes sure Deku’s siting up, bent over a bit so his back can get the most water. After all, it’s the worst. The fucking nerd jumps when he turns the cool water on, but immediately relaxes.

 

Katsuki leaves to get clothes.

 

When he comes back, he finds that Deku took off more of his suit, and has Aizawa’s capture weapon and his mask thrown aside on the ground. The capture weapon doesn’t look touched. Is it fireproof?

 

“...Why didn’t they lock up that crazy fuck?” Katsuki asks. There was something off about how everything was handled.

 

“They probably h-had a reason, Kacchan.” Deku won’t look him in the eyes. Katsuki’s annoyed by all the blood running off of him and staining the tub’s walls. “Why are you doing this?” That’s a good question, maybe Katsuki feels guilty over all the torment he put Deku through? Maybe because he was a shitty person and feels like he wants to change? Or, maybe it was because Deku’s screaming reminded him of how Deku used to react to Katsuki using his quirk on him? He has so many answers, and yet,

 

“I don’t know,” He shrugs, “You were there. I was. Heroes help.” He wants to wipe that stupid fucking smile off Deku’s face. A smile of disbelief.

 

“Heroes did this to me.”

 

One did.” There’s quiet. “Are you pissed at Aizawa?” Deku gives a small hum.

 

“I think he was shot or something. There’s no way he had control over his quirk if this happened.  He would’ve cancelled Endeavor’s in a heartbeat. Katsuki stares intensely at every wound he sees.

 

“What happens with quirk suppressants fucking you up?”

 

“I just have to hope they wear off before I die.”

 

“Is that what happened when you were shot?” Deku chuckles, lowering his head and bringing his knees to his chest. The stretching motion pulls at the burns.

 

“Yeah. I cut off my own hand to bleed out the drugs.” What the fuck? That’s stupid as hell.

 

“Who’s shitty idea was that?!”

 

“....Mine.” Shitty Deku mumbles, casting a glare at Kacchan.

 

“God, what the fuck did you get me caught up in.” He turns away to get the rubbing alcohol and bandages. The water’s starting to run clear again. Katsuki pretends he can’t see that Deku’s crying. He’ll convince himself it’s just water, despite the rest of his face being dry.

 

“Shut the fuck up, Kacchan.” What- “If you just believed I was a boy named Izuku on the first day of class, this would never have happened.” This would never have happened if I were friends with you. If you had someone there to save you and Auntie. This wouldn’t have happened if you…

 

“All this happened because you had a mutation in your quirk.” Katsuki realizes. He startles at the laugh Deku chokes on.

 

“I know right! Now I’m stuck pretending to be everything I’m not.”

 

“The hell does that mean?”

 

“A hero.” ….Oh. Katsuki shuts the water off.

 

“Listen up, you dickbag. I’m going to pour the rubbing alcohol over you to disinfect the wounds, and you’re not going to make a peep. You wake my parents up and you’re shitty life is fuckin’ over.” Deku warily eyes the bottle in his hand.

 

“I don’t think that’s right.”

 

“What would you know? You have a fucking healing quirk.” Without warning, he moves closer and begins pouring it over Deku. The boy doesn’t make a sound. He actually looks kind of…. Bored. High pain tolerance. Being set on fire must just hurt like a bitch. Once he’s done, he grabs Deku’s arms and makes him stand so he can wrap bandages around him.

 

“Aren’t you supposed to be with Best Jeanist?” Deku asks.

 

“I opted out of staying with that loser during the nights. I commute.” Katsuki heads to the door. “Change your clothes and come back to my room.”

 

“And how would I know which one’s yours?”

 

“We were childhood friends.” Katsuki reminds with a bitter taste.

 

“....Right.” Katsuki leaves the room.

 


 

 

Shouta aimlessly hops from building to building, looking for any sign of Midoriya. He’s gotten nothing. No texts, no locations, nothing. Honestly, he’s about to lose his goddamn mind.

 

His phone rings and he picks it up without checking.

 

“Midoriya?!” He asks, trying to remind himself to be rational.

 

“Nope.” The ‘p’ is popped, letting Shouta knows he’s dealing with a very pissed off Hitoshi.

 

“Listen, I know what you saw was bad. It was. I’m sorry. But you need to understand that I didn’t know Endeavor was going to be involved.” The other line is quiet for a minute, before there’s a long sigh.

 

“When you get home, you’re bringing both Izuku and prove that what you said was true.” I understand. I broke your trust and let him get hurt. “Why didn’t you stop Endeavor?”

 

“One of the bullets grazed me.”

 

“Are you alright?”

 

“I’m fine. I just can’t use my quirk.”

 

“So, why was Endeavor involved?” Hitoshi seethes.

 

“I’ll explain when I’m home. I promise. Until then,” Hizashi is going to be mad at me for this. I shouldn’t do this. Teenage vigilantism is what I’m trying to get rid of for God’s sake. “Did Oni teach you how to hack?”

 

“....Oh my God.” Hitoshi whispers excitedly. “I’m so telling on you when Izuku gets back.” Shouta rolls his eyes, “He taught me the basics. What do you need?” Shouta can hear the clacking of keys through the phone.

 

“Get into the Commissioner General's email and see if he sent anything to the police about making sure Endeavor can do what he wants. Footage from inside the office would be great too.” Hitoshi hums.

 

“I can get the email. As for the cameras, that’s more up Izuku’s alley. I’ll try it, though.” They say their goodbyes so Shouta can get back to his search.

 

There’s a trail of blood, but there’s no way to tell that it’s Midoriya’s. It could be anyone’s. Seeing as he can’t ignore his heroics duties, he still follows it. It leads him to a creak, where it looks like they submerged themself in the water. They didn’t fall and roll in, they deliberately climbed in. Why?

 

To cool themselves off.

 

It makes sense if it were Midoriya. The water’s a good temperature for relief from the burns, even if it’s grossly unsanitary. There’s another set of footsteps, then the footsteps leave, tracking mud onto the pavement. A small trail of water drops are present too. If this was Midoriya, he could have been carried away. It’s a shame the trail disappears.

 

He searches for five more hours before going home. Only because Hizashi begged him. He walks into the front door and is hugged by his husband, a grounding weight he really needed. Shouta’s guided up to the bathroom to shower, pajamas already on the counter. After mumbling a ‘thank you’ to Hizashi, he showers.

 

Why does it seem like everything’s constantly escalating? One thing always comes after the other, being a bigger threat than the last. What’s the end going to be? Oni’s arrest? Vigilante retirement? God, Shouta hopes so. Once he gets out the shower, he knocks on Hitoshi’s door.

 

“Come in.” He calls. Shouta opens the door and is immediately shocked by how this boy doesn’t need glasses. His eyes are practically on his computer screen.

 

“What’d you find?” Shouta asks after seeing looks of disgust, confusion, and fury come over Hitoshi’s face.

 

“Hisashi. Motherfucking. Midoriya.” He seethes and practically throws his laptop to Shouta. On the left side of the screen are all the emails, confirming what Shouta was told. On the other is security footage. There’s no audio, but they can clearly see Hisashi Midoriya holding a gun to the CG’s back and laughing, rambling about God knows what. Maybe the audio is key?

 

“What the fuck.” Shouta breathes, running a hand through his hair.

 

“He’s trying to get Oni before he gets him.” You’re right. It’s been a long time since I’ve been involved in such a complex case.

 

“Why is this so complicated?” Shouta grumbles.

 

“As Izuku would say, ‘the plot dictates’.”

 

“What does that even mean?”

 

“I don’t know, actually.” They shrug it off and keep reviewing footage.

 

“You understand you can’t tell Hizashi this, he’d kill me if he knew you were-” Their phones buzz with a mass text that’s a single image of Oni in his mask, with clothes that are way too big for him on. There’s one caption:

 

I lived, Bitches

Chapter Text

Shouto stares at the stars, a memory bubbling up.

 

“Do you do this often?” Shouto asked, being led out his window and onto the roof of the house.

 

“Yeah. Mostly when the streets are quiet and I feel safe enough to.” The moment Shouto even thinks his grip could slip, Izu turned around a grabbed his wrist, pulling him from the window to the gutter. “Alright, Now you can climb up that like a pole. But with steps!”

 

“So, A one-legged ladder?” Izu giggled at his stupid jokes, making Shouto’s face hot. Maybe the cold air is messing with my quirk? Maybe It’s getting me sick? Either way, Shouto didn’t mind the feeling. “Are you going to watch the Sports Festival from the roof like this? Watching from the edge?”

 

“No, no.” Izu looked away, turning so Shouto couldn’t even see the expressions his mask made. “I’ll be a lot closer than you think, I promise.”

 

“Who do you think will win? No playing favorites.”

 

“You will. That’s me being realistic.” Shouto hummed, not really satisfied with that answer.

 

“How is that realistic?”

 

“Well, If you used both of your quirks against me, I’d lose.”

 

“You, the wanted vigilante who’s never been caught without escaping, would lose?”  He’s so genuine. I know he’s telling the truth.

 

“If you used both quirks, hell yeah I would! If it were just your ice, I could overwhelm you into quirk exhaustion. You’d be your own downfall, dummy.” The wind picked up, causing Izu to take advantage of Shouto’s left side. He basically tucked himself under Shouto’s arm, wrapping around him like a sloth.

 

“I’m not using his quirk.”  Why does he keep insisting? Izu sighed, sounding disappointed. It stung, actually.

 

“It’s not your moldy walnut of a father’s quirk, it’s yours. I care about you, and that includes making sure you don’t hurt yourself out of stubbornness.”

 

“You care about me.” Shouto never knew why he repeated it. It was such a easy thing for Izu to say. How can something so casual be so impactful?

 

“Ah! Shouto! Stop using your heat so much!” Izu laughed as he rolled away from Shouto. “You use your quirk when you get the smallest bit emotional. It comes so naturally to you, so why fight against it?!” Izu stood now, looking into the stars. Shouto remained laying on the roof, eyes staying on the star beside him.

 

“You know why. And….. I’m sorry. I know you don’t like fire quirks. I’ll try harder next time not to-” Izu cut him off, storming up and kneeling to grab Shouto’s face. I can’t see his face but I know we’re making eye contact. I know there’s a fierce look of anger and determination under that mask.

 

“Don’t you fucking DARE change or oppress any part of yourself for me! Only a goddamned fool would do that! You’re amazing exactly as you are and I’d kill to be a person as good as you. I’d jump at the chance to be even the smallest fraction of a person like you.” His voice is cracking. I never considered how he might have felt about my life. Sure, he hates Shouto’s father, but does Izu really envy him that much? Is Shouto such an ideal character to be?

 

“....Why me?” Izu laughed at him, the sound was both sweet and broken.

 

“Why you? Shouto, you’ve had so many setbacks in your life and you still want to be a hero. You want to save people. I’m just… this. I’m just a selfish little bitch who’s creating a national upset because of my own personal issues. You’re such a beautiful person, Shouto. I wish I had that.” For a long time, no one spoke. Izu went back to pacing around the roof.

 

“Izu, I know you became a vigilante because of All Might, but you said there are other reasons, right? What’s the main reason?” Izu turned to Shouto, sad smile settling on his face as one hand reached up to hold his necklace.

 

“My father is a villain.” Shouto tensed, “He killed my mother.”

 

“Oh.”  Really? That’s all I can say?

 

“Your father wasn’t the first person to set me on fire, you know.”

 

“Izu?” Shouto thought it over, realizing he doesn’t know a lot about his friend. “What were your parent’s quirks?” Izu perked up a moment, most likely remembering fond memories before the life he lives now.

 

“My mom had a weak telekinesis. She could pull small objects towards her. It was such a weak sounding quirk but it could’ve been so fucking strong.” Izu sounded borderline excited. Shouto wanted to see him like this more.

 

“What do you mean?” He wanted to hear Izu happily rant on.

 

“Think about it! Who knows what the limit of ‘small objects’ is for her. She could probably pull the air out your lungs if she trained enough.”  He’s right, but most quirks could be trained to exploit their limits like that. “In my opinion, it’s a stronger quirk than my father’s. He can breathe fire.” The air changed, the wind suddenly colder than before. A tight line replaces Izu’s smile. “He set me and my mom on fire.”

 

“I’m sorry.” Shouto tried, lifting an arm as Izu wandered over to lay back down. Without looking like he thought much about it, Izu moves back to his spot. If this is what having a friend is like, this is great. I’m happier.

 

“Don’t be. I think once everything is over and I finish everything, I’ll give up vigilantism.”

 

“Will I get to know who you are under the mask?”

 

“Yes.”

 


 

 

Shouto wakes up with a jolt, almost falling off the roof.

 

Did I fall asleep?  Carefully, he climbs back into his room and into bed. The screen on his phone is lit up.

 

[Oni]

I want to let you know that I’m alive and that I should be okay. Please don’t do anything to fuck over your chance at UA and just play everything safe.

 

A weight lifts from Shouto’s shoulders. When Izu caught fire, it took him everything he had not to attack his father. Why hadn’t they restrained him? Shouto wished Izu would let him help. He knows why he can’t, but sitting there and just watching everything happen will haunt him for a very long time.

 

[Shouto]

You’re alive, but are you okay? Where are you? Who’s with you?

 

[Oni]

Calm down lmao. I can’t say who I’m staying with, but I’m safe. I’m waiting for the quirk suppressants to wear out, then I’ll heal.

 

[Shouto]

So you’re saying you’re still covered in life-threatening injuries with no way to know if you’ll survive them?

 

[Oni]

….Yes?

 

[Shouto]

WHAT IS YOUR LOCATION?!

 

[Oni]

I’m not letting you get involved any more than you have been. Besides, it’s been a long night, get some rest.

 

What? He doesn’t sound normal.

 

[Shouto]

Izu?

 

[Oni]

I don’t want you seeing me like this.

 

[Oni is Offline]


 

 

Hawks watching on as a UA student pulls Oni out of the water and back to his own home. He’d been patrolling for Oni anyways, stopping when his feather’s picked up movement. It’s a shame Katsuki Bakugou got to Oni before he did. Now, he’s just  awkwardly flying behind buildings trying to tail them. Wings aren’t the best for stealth.

 

He has a lot he wants to talk to Oni about. Like how he never considered how Hawks feels about being thrown into the title of number two hero. Everything’s moving too fast. The flutter of his wings, the beating on his chest, the racing of his thoughts. Hell, even the way everything surrounding Endeavor unraveled happened too fast.

 

Well, it’s not like he’s shocked. Hawks is ‘The Man who’s too fast for his own good’. It’s just that it feels like the rest of the world is catching up to him.

 

Ask Hawks what his first name is and he can’t te-

 

“Mom’s. Keep safe.” Oni drops something into Bakugou’s hands. A necklace of sorts. Does he actually have a family? Do they know each other?

 

“-Stop talking, Deku.” Bakugou hisses just loud enough for Hawks to hear more of the conversation. Deku?

 

Once at the Bakugou residence, Hawks camps out in the tree closest to the bedroom with the lights on. He’s assuming it’s Katsuki’s room and not his parents’. There’s no movement or sound for a long time, until the door suddenly swings open. He should learn to keep his curtains shut all the way. Bakugou storms in by himself, pacing before abruptly throwing himself down onto the bed. Minutes later, Oni limps into the room, face covered in burns and bruises- Wait, he’s not wearing his mask. That’s Izuku Midoriya, the kid from the Sports Festival. Hawks feels a headache coming on as he desperately tries to sort out the facts based on this new information. Is it really that easy to kidnap yourself?  Now he just has to get Oni away from this house.

 

As Hawks tries to think of a well-thought out plan, he feels eyes on him. He looks up and meets Oni’s. When Bakugou turns to look as well, Oni gets his attention. So, Bakugou’s not involved? Just helping this one time?  When his friend isn’t looking, Oni flips him off. I have a plan. There’s three tiny vents in this house, just small enough for some feathers to sneak into. He has two of his feathers in Bakugou’s room, both of them are distracted, not seeing the feathers taking Oni’s necklace off the dresser.

 

When in his reach, Hawks grabs it and holds it up for Oni to see. The vigilante pales before spiraling into a feral rage. Bakugou has to hold him down, until a swift hit to the head knocks out Bakugou. Even with those injuries?  The window opens.

 

“Give it back.” Oni’s voice is strained.

 

“What are you going to do about it?” He teases. Apparently, that was the wrong thing to do. Oni leaps from the window towards him, latching onto Hawks with a scarf of sorts. It’s strong, what is this? Oni reels himself towards Hawks. Considering that Oni is both injured and a child, he’s a bit hesitant to fight him. Even more so when he realizes his quirk isn’t responding as fast anymore.

 

“Quirk suppressants suck, right? There was some still in the scarf from earlier.” Oni wheezes when they come to a mutual agreement that they shouldn’t fight.

 

“Let’s go.” Hawks turns to walk, not hearing Oni following.

 

“My necklace?” He rolls his eyes, tossing it to the kid. “Where are we going?” The end of Oni’s sentence is cut out by a yawn. The number two hero pretends he doesn’t see the kid swaying on his feet. You’re moving like you’re not covered in burns. Like you’re not ripping open wounds with every step you take. If his quirk were fully functional, he could’ve carried Oni.

 

“My agency.” Oni tenses, eyeing him with suspicion. “Relax, it’s so we can talk, and you can rest. You’re basically a zombie right now.”

 

“I’m fine, how about you take your fluffy ass home and let me worr-” Oni doesn’t get the chance to hit the ground when he passes out. Hawks’ reaction time is too good for that.

 

Once back at his agency, he goes to the top floor. It’s his apartment. After all, why would he live somewhere else when hero work is all he does anymore? Oni’s on the couch as Hawks makes dinner for them. Oni was still completely out by time he arrived, so there was no fuss in sneaking him in. The only thing he has to decide is whether or not to report having Oni’s location.

 

He’s not going to.

 

When he comes back to his room with food, Oni’s awake.

 

“You hungry?” He tries, surprised to not immediately get a glare from him. A tray of food is handed over and Hawks takes a seat on the bed. They eat in a tense silence.

 

“You really like chicken.” Oni observes.

 

“All birds, really.”

 

“...Thanks, for helping.” He mutters. “So, what do you want from me?”

 

“I have questions.” Oni isn’t surprised at all.

 

“Okay, I’ll play. What are they?”

 

“You’re Izuku Midoriya?” Oni nods, narrowing his eyes a bit, “You’re trying to capture your uncle for some reason.” Another nod, “In the process you stumbled into Shouto Todoroki’s life and his father’s abuse.” One more nod, “So, have you really considered how the loss of him as a hero affects the other heroes?”

 

“Of course I have, you four-piece mcnugget! You’re capable of being the top hero, without a doubt. You appeal to everyone. You have a much higher approval rating than Endeavor had anyways. Besides, Endeavor would never help someone in need like you are now.” Hawks frowns.

 

“You’re a wanted criminal, I don’t think that’s very heroic.”

 

“You know who I am. You decided to save the child, not the vigilante.” When did you get so wise? Then again, you know something I don’t.

 

“Why did you say I’m capable of being the top hero, like All Might isn’t going to be?” Oni tenses ever so slightly, just enough for Hawks’ feathers to pick up on the movement. “I’ve never really cared for All Might, but I think he can be number one pretty well. It means I still won’t have to do much. That’s the idea.”

 

“A world where heroes don’t have to constantly patrol, huh? Put it that way and maybe people’d agree with you.” Oni sneers.

 

“Says the UA student.” That shuts him up. “I know you want to be a hero, or at least want to help people.”

 

“You have no proof against me.” He warns, almost snarling. “I don’t know what you think you can get out of this.” Hawks gives a full laugh, before going back to chowing down on his chicken.

 

“Relax! I don’t want to be on your ShitList or anything! Besides, your classmate is interning with me, and I don’t want bad news from UA harming my brand.”

 

“....One of my classmates is here?” All color drains from the boys face.

 

“Yeah, but Tokoyami’s on the third floor with the rest of the interns. No one’s allowed on this floor without permission. It’s my home, after all.” Sitting in his bed with a scowl on his face and arms crossed, Hawks can see that this ‘vicious vigilante’ is probably the dorkiest kid. “ Anyways, Is there something up with All Might?”

 

“No.”

 

“Oni-”

 

“Even if there WAS, Why would I tell anyone?! He doesn’t even know I know, so why would I tell some scruffy FuckMcNugget about it?” He’s on edge.

 

“Okay, fine, I’ll drop it. How are your wounds doing?”

 

“They’ll heal. I’ll live.”

 

“But they hurt, right?”

 

“Everything hurts, all the time. Nothing’s new.” Wow, edgy. On the bed, Oni’s phone keeps buzzing. Hawks takes the chance to go through footage of the trail for clues, only realizing one thing. That scarf Oni’s clutching onto for dear life is Eraserhead’s. The hero is up and pacing.

 

“Why’d you become a hero?” There’s genuine curiosity in Oni’s voice. “You’re so young.” Says the literal baby.

 

“There was an incident when I was a child. I used my quirk to save people and it put me on the fast track to being a hero.” A look of something like confusion comes over Oni’s face.

 

“But did you want to become a hero?” The gaze on him makes his blood run cold. For the first time, it’s like someone’s seeing straight through Hawks.

 

“I’ve only ever been known as a natural-born hero, like All Might.” Oni wrinkles his nose at the mention of All Might. “When I saved those people, it felt really good. I developed a hyperfixation on heroics that lasted years, then I just got bored. It comes and goes, to be honest. I’m scared that my boredom and fear of being trapped in a single career path will cost someone their life. As a result, I’m always on the move, always thinking and preparing for the worst.”

 

“That’s why you want that future? In a world where heroes have the most free time, you can be a hero while still exploring and focusing on new things.”

 

“Exactly.”

 

“Hawks? Is that why you’re practically running around the room?” Hawks freezes midstep, wandering back to a chair and sitting. His legs are no longer moving, but his wings flap in place.

 

“I think you can relate to Hypervigilance. It makes me fidgety. Either that or the ADHD, it’s hard to tell nowadays.”

 

“Oh Mood.” Oni mutters. His phone goes off and he picks it up, looking at Hawks for permission.

 

“Go ahead.” Oni places the phone in between his feet in order to free his hands. Must be a video call. When the person picks up the phone, Oni starts speaking sign language. Hawks has no visual on the screen, but he hears a strangled noise from the other end. They have a conversation, and Hawks can’t help but watch on in awe. He must really love whoever he’s talking to.

 

After half an hour of Oni signing to someone over the phone, he looks like he’s starting to crash. He says a quick goodnight a hangs up, slumping into the pillows on the bed.

 

“Who was that?”

 

“M’Broth...er..” He’s asleep. This somehow feels too easy. Hawks goes about the rest of his night while the vigilante sleeps like a rock. Today was probably beyond exhausting for him.

 

Halfway into the night, Hawks’ phone lights up. There’s another leaked video.

 

Wanted criminal, Hisashi Midoriya, threatening the Commissioner General. He’s making sure Endeavor will remain able to do whatever the hell he wants. Endeavor was a pawn and he never even knew it. Played right into this villain’s game. Hawks feels a slight emptiness. His favorite hero outed as an abuser and overall terrible person, now being exposed as someone who’s easy to manipulate. Hawks wishes he cared about All Might like all the other kids did. With the way Oni speaks of All Might, he fears it’s a little too late for that as well.

 

The message was sent out by both Oni and Catspiracy, meaning whoever he was on the phone with must be Catspiracy.

 

Hawks remembers watching a video the youtuber made about quirks determining social class and being responsible for how people are treated. Hawks was the prime example of someone with an ideal quirk skipping through life’s struggles and being thrown straight into luxury. As much as he hates to admit it, every word said was True. If he didn’t have these wings, he’d just be a normal person. Unwanted and unneeded. Like Oni. He needs a distraction. Maybe he can go out for a patrol? Yeah, that sounds good. Hawks gets up, still having his suit on. He’s in the middle of writing a note for when Oni wakes up when he hears the screaming. He flies out of habit, knocking over a lamp as he scrambles back to his bedroom. He throws the door open and sees the kid kicking blankets off of him, screaming that he’s on fire.

 

His grabs Oni, pulling him into an embrace to try and stop him from clawing at himself.

 

“It’s okay. You’re safe.” Hawks tries. He’s never been good with children, considering the fact that he’s barely an adult. It takes an hour of him restraining Oni for the kid to go back to sleep. “Thank god. Fuck it, I’m going to bed.” Hawks takes a shower and sleeps on his couch.

 


 

 

When Katsuki wakes up, he feels immediate rage and panic. Where the fuck did he go?! What happened?! He thinks back to last night. That fucker knocked me out. Why?  When he checks his phone, he has a message.

 

[Oni]

A hero found me, so I left. I knocked you out so you couldn’t stop me.

 

[Katsuki]

Touch me again and I snap your fingers, shitty Deku.

 

[Oni]

Ya, sure Kacchan. Everyone at the Sports Festival can say otherwise

 

[Katsuki]

Fuck you!

 

[Oni]

Fuck me yourself, coward.

 

Katsuki freezes. When did this dumbass learn to snap back at people?  He can’t imagine the old Deku being able to sass people like this. Either way, Katsuki’s wondering if he can block Deku without him finding a way around it.

 

Fuck it, he’ll worry about everything later. He has to go put up with Best Jeanist now.


 

 

It’s been almost a week since anyone’s seen Midoriya, and Shouta is about to lose his mind. He’s been getting even less sleep than usual. He has to break in his new capture weapon, which is also getting on his nerves. It’s a good thing he ordered more than one when he decided to teach Hitoshi how to use it.

 

From down the hall, he can hear his students going on excitedly, and way too loud for this time of morning. He walks into the room and is greeted by the biggest shit-eating grin he’s ever seen.

 

Chapter Text

Shouta looks at this brat for a long time, not saying anything. That is, until his other students start staring at him. Many kids are surrounding Todoroki’s desk, no doubt plagued with questions about his kiss with a vigilante.

 

“Everyone in their seats.” He orders, gladly watching them scramble. “Now, I know most of you saw Endeavor’s trial. You are not to ask me or Todoroki anything about it. Especially Todoroki. None of you have the right to his personal life, don’t pressure him into sharing any more than he has-” A hand goes up.

 

“Sir, they said you’re currently Oni’s guardian?! He lives with you!?” Kaminari blurts out. Shouta sighs, realizing they won’t listen.

 

“He has been staying with me, yes. As many heard, he’s about your age. I don’t intend on having any children living on the streets.”

 

“You mean you let him stay there while you’re gone? I mean, he could be robbing you!” Ashido joins in. Maybe if I give them some of my personal life, they’ll butt out of the case.

 

“He’s not alone. My husband and son are also there.” The class grows silent.

 

“YOU HAVE A FAMILY?!” The class screams at him in unison. Hitoshi smiles a bit in his seat, as well as Midoriya.

 

“I thought having a family as a hero is too impractical?” Iida asks.

 

“It is.” The silence he’s given shows their confusion well enough, “Though, sometimes things happen that you know are illogical but still can’t help. Like love. To me it’s the most illogical thing in this line of work, yet I couldn’t help it. Be aware that you might think it selfish when you fall in love as heroes yourself. You’ll worry about them constantly, knowing they’ll have a target on their back just for even knowing you. God forbid you have children. As your teacher, I need you to learn all of the risks of becoming a hero. It’s never just about your life being in danger. It’s everyone around you.” The class listens with full attention, completely forgetting their previous questions. “I’ve learned that sometimes the most irrational things are the most rewarding. It’s about balance more than anything now.” The students of 1-A think over this quietly. Shouta takes his capture weapon off, still not comfortable with it yet. This is pathetic, I should have already adjusted to it.

 

Homeroom goes on as normal, students leaving Todoroki alone.

 

“Midoriya, a word?” The Pest looks up at him, nodding and coming towards the door. “Go down the hall.” Midoriya does so without snarking back. Several doors away from his classroom, Shouta stares down Midoriya, checking for any signs of new scarring. After that, he takes a long look at his student, thinking of what he actually wishes to say first.

 

“So, Eraser, are you just going to stand there and pout?” Eh?

 

 

Excuse me?” He seethes. He hasn’t said a word before this and he’s already getting on my nerves.

 

“You’re basically glaring a hole through my face. A burning stare, but not as hot as Endeavor’s flames-”

 

Midoriya."  The brat’s teeth snap shut. “Just tell me, are you okay?”

 

“I uh… What?” Midoriya blinks, a look of utter confusion coming across his face.

 

“I’m asking if you’re both physically and emotionally alright. Listen, I’m sorry about how everything happened. I had no idea Endeavor would be allowed to do what he did. I’m sorry I couldn’t protect you-”

 

“I don’t need anyone’s protection, Eraser.” He snaps, narrowing his eyes. “I never relied on others before, and I don’t plan on doing it now.” Sure, like you haven’t been a guest in my private home. With your own bedroom. Sure, okay.

 

Fine, we’ll worry about that statement later. Where have you been? You’ve been missing for days.” He’d yell at Midoriya, but that’d show how worried he really was. That, and get too much attention on them.

 

“Hawks likes me and let me crash at his place.” For a moment, Shouta forgets how to process sound.

 

“Hawks, the new number two hero, let you crash at his agency?”

 

“Yep.” Midoriya pops the ‘p’. “He’s super chill, we get along well enough to consider each other friends.”

 

“How long have you known him?” I don’t want to have to consider another pawn in his game, let alone a top hero. Endeavor was enough and he’s already fallen.

 

“He found me during a patrol and made me come with him. He had something valuable to me. I realized I had nowhere else to go that was as safe. It was a smart choice.”

 

“Not for him.”

 

“Maybe. He knows who I am, he found me without a mask.” What the hell? How long until I buy hair dye for my ever growing collection of greys? Shouta has to calm himself down. He approaches his student and firmly places a hand on either of his shoulders. “Eraser?”

 

“I’m glad you’re okay. Please just come back to our house if something like this happens again.” Midoriya gains an unreadable expression before Shouta moves his hand and ruffles his hair a bit. “In any case, Endeavor’s done for.”

 

“We did it.” Midoriya smiles a bit, genuinely happy.

 

“We did.”

 

“So what do-”

 

“Ah! Young Aizawa!” All Might turns the corner, not yet seeing Midoriya there too. The boy stills.

 

“What is it?” Shouta asks.

 

“I was going to ask how your class is doing. If anyone seems especially changed since the internships. I have an exercise in mind.”

 

“Being what?” Midoriya asks when All Might stares a moment too long. All Might takes it as a sign to step further away from Midoriya. Good choice. Seems like he’s finally learning.

 

“Well, Young Midoriya, it’d be unfair for me to tell you ahead of time. Unfortunately, it seems this exercise will cater more to those with physical quirks.” Midoriya barely even blinks at him.

 

“Why wouldn’t it?” Don’t snark him, he’ll start to figure things out easier. “After all, heroics are only for offensive quirks, right All Might?” He’s paraphrasing All Might’s first meeting with him?  “I mean, what could I do, little old defenseless me?” And we’re leaving.

 

“Midoriya, we’re taking a walk.” Shouta says, grabbing Midoriya’s ear and leading him away.

 


 

Toshinori stares after the backs of Aizawa and Young Midoriya. Well, I suppose I deserved that. Toshinori deserves every punch Midoriya decides to throw. After all, he’s the only person he meant to save and ended up making a victim out of.

 

Something doesn’t make sense to Toshinori. Sure, he could be talking back out of anger, but that doesn’t make sense with the rest of his personality. Every teacher here thinks he’s an overly polite stuttering mess. Is his attitude towards Toshinori completely fake? A way of being Midoriya created to help him cope with the pain he’s caused? That could be it, but Young Aizawa doesn’t seemed fazed at all to see him act that way.

 

So, which is it? Which is the act? Toshinori hopes Midoriya isn’t that snappy.

 

The number of chances he has to speak with the boy are fairly slim. That is, without Aizawa near. There’s too many mysteries to solve, Aizawa’s request can be put on hold. After all, Midoriya seems to be able to speak with him now, even if it’s not very polite.

 

There’s today’s exercise, but they’ll be surrounded by other classmates. Maybe during exams? Seeing as All Might is already paired up with Bakugou and Midoriya, he might get the chance to speak with them. I wish Aizawa was able to come to the meeting, he could’ve done a very good job at matching teachers up with students to fight. Well, we can’t blame him, he’s been more than busy with the Oni issue.

 

Perhaps he can get a word with Midoriya during the summer camp? It’s only bothersome because Toshinori prefers to solve this sooner than later.

 


 

 

Hitoshi knew Izuku was alright this whole time, but seeing him feels completely different. They met up outside the school gates, and they practically tackled each other in a hug. Hitoshi’s glad Izuku missed him just as much. It’s a feeling he’s never actually felt before. Genuinely missing someone, hoping they feel the same way. Well, it is his first time having a loving family. Izuku will always be a part of that, whether or not he cares to admit it.

 

So when Dad came into homeroom and saw Izuku, Hitoshi grinned like a maniac at the look of pure relief that washed over his father. Here I thought you two couldn’t stand each other. When Izuku comes back into the room, it’s with All Might. There’s a tense and obviously fake smile on Izuku, but none of the other classmates seem to call him out on it. It’s surprising that besides Izuku, four students know he’s Oni. Yet his identity is still safe.

 

“I am HERE!” All Might seems to wait for Izuku to be seated before shouting. Did he wait because of Izuku? That’s suspiciously considerate. “I hope all of you had a fun and educational time on your internships! You all can suit up and meet me in Field Gamma for a nice exercise!” Just like that, All Might’s gone. The class wanders down to the locker rooms, still leaving Todoroki alone after Dad said to. Hitoshi changes into his costume, lucky that there’s only him, Izuku, and Todoroki that use this area of the room.

 

“Izu-” Todoroki tightly hugs Izuku, “I’m so glad you’re okay. I’m sorry I couldn’t help.”

 

“Not helping was the right thing to do. I don’t expect you to incriminate yourself for me. That’d be so fuckin’ stupid.” He laughs. Hitoshi wishes he had a camera out as Todoroki quickly kisses Izuku on the forehead. God, Izuku’s actually on the ground. Oh, is that fetal position? Todoroki, I approve. Todoroki gets ready without another word. Now they just wait on Izuku.

 

Hitoshi goes through his apps while he waits, sighing deeply when he opens twitter. He types out a reply, and is surprised at how quickly everyone else responds, even the hero in question.

 

 

“Izuku, why are you like this?” Hitoshi asks, getting a faked look of innocence in response.

 

“Hmm?”

 

“I don’t like you.”

 

“Say that again and I take you on Dr. Phil.” What?

 


 

 

Izuku’s on fire. This time, not literally. No, it’s his heart. Shouto gave the quickest kiss ever on his forehead yet he feels like Shouto’s a descendant of Recovery Girl. There’s some kind of supernatural force behind that kiss. One that heals all injuries faster than he can. My heart is both in my throat and stomach at the same time. Oh, I’m dying. This is death, isn’t it?

 

That’s not the Todoroki I thought would kill me, though.

 

“Izuku, are you listening?” Toshi hisses, kicking him lightly. “You can’t just tweet whatever the hell you want. Apparently, Hawks is just as reckless as you!” He is, and that’s why spending the rest of the internship with him was actually fun. He actually did a few patrols with the hero, wearing another mask instead of his Oni mask. Patrolling was incredibly fun, he must say.

 

It was impressive how Hawks’ quirk looked like it was a separate being from him. Turns out, he’s just been molded into the perfect hero. Well, I wouldn’t say perfect. His attention span isn’t always the greatest, and he’ll go off on tangents. Speak when he’s not really supposed to. Then again, there’s a reason for all of these things and I think that’s so valid? Hawks is such a better hero than Endeavor. I’m glad I didn’t get someone dumb.

 

“Yes, I can tweet whatever I want. I don’t respect any laws, that means the internet too.” Toshi rolls his eyes.

 

“And you, Todoroki, you didn’t think your kiss with a vigilante through, did you?” The heterochromatic boy in question furrows his brow a moment before giving a solemn nod.

 

“I didn’t.”

 

“What do you mean?” Izuku asks, suddenly worried.

 

“Well, think about it. If Todoroki is now known as having some sort of relationship with Oni, the school can’t see you and Todoroki acting the same too. They might suspect something.”

 

“....UH,” We’re not actually in a relationship. We haven’t talked about anything. I’m comfortable how we are, and I think he is too. “What if we say Shouto’s just cheating-”

 

“Out of the question.” Toshi interrupts. “That’s not something a hero would do. Especially publicly.”

 

“What about Poly?” Shouto chimes in.

 

“Hmm, I don’t think so. That’d make people think Izuku has personal reasons for delaying the Oni investigation. It’s best for Izuku Midoriya not to be with Shouto Todoroki. Oni, however, is free to.” I think my brain is going to explode.

 

“What if we go on Dr. Phil and have Philly explain that I don’t have personal reasons to delay the investigation?” Toshi snorts.

 

“What’s up with you and Dr. Phil lately?” He laughs.

 

“Hawks and I watched a lot of Dr. Phil on our down time.” We started a binge for no reason other than to find memes, and we ended up learning a lot. Then we got bored and moved onto Rugrats. A cold hand settles on Izuku’s shoulder.

 

“We have to go to the rest of our class.” Shouto reminds, leaving Toshi and Izuku alone.

 

“You guys are good together. He can give you some impulse control when I take days off.” Toshi smiles.

 

“We’re not in a relationship. We’re just highly affectionate friends right now.” Izuku rubs his eyes, wondering if he’s still too emotionally drained from the trial. A lot of my time with Hawks was also him making sure I had time to mentally recharge. If I didn’t feel up to do something, I didn’t have to. It was amazing. It was also a luxury he’s never had. Izuku made sure not to get too comfortable with it.

 

After all, relaxation is only ever temporary.

 

“Do you want to be in a relationship?” Toshi raises an eyebrow, already aware of the answer.

 

“No, it’s not safe for either of us.” At that, his friend has the audacity to laugh!

 

“Izuku, you’re a vigilante and hero in training. Todoroki’s a literal powerhouse student a future top hero. You’ll be fine.” He’s right, so why doesn’t Izuku feel any better?

 

“Let’s just go already.” With Toshi in tow, they join the rest of their class. All Might explains that he’ll hide somewhere in the center of the city, and have a group of students race to his location first. Not only do we have to be the fastest, but we have find his location as well. This is a search and rescue exercise. Izuku’s already done quite a few of those on patrols.

 

He watches the first group go, not surprised that Shouto wins first with his ice. In the second round, Toshi gets second to Kacchan. The class was surprised at his rank, but no one was more delightfully shocked than All Might.

 

“Shinsou, you did great! How did you learn such mobility?!” All Might proudly asks.

 

“Izuku trained me.” He says bluntly, getting shocked silence from the class.

 

“Well, he did get second in the festival.” Kirishima chimes in, getting a few nods of agreement.

 

“He even beat our dear Bakugou!” Kaminari gets smacked. “Maybe Midoriya’s just hiding his true strength?” Now it’s time to act a bit.

 

“Wha-Wha?! That’s not true!” He nervously laughs, “I uh, I’ve just wanted to be  a hero since I was a kid, and I taught myself early on how to get around my quirk’s disadvantages.”

 

“Who knew an analysis quirk was so powerful?” Ojiro gives him a small pat on the back as he says it. Izuku pretends that he doesn’t see the nervous look All Might’s giving him. Aizawa told me to dial back the sass when speaking to All Might. I’m supposed to be a Stuttering Stanley in front of everyone, including him.

 

“Next group may go in!” All Might calls, leaving for the center of the city. Izuku keeps his eyes trained on All Might, seeing which direction he goes in. He makes sure to get to his starting point early, getting his Oni phone out. There are cameras on me, but not sophisticated enough to see my screen.

 

Izuku may or may not have hacked into All Might’s phone to get his location.

 

What, he basically said I wouldn’t do well in this exercise! Now I have to be the best!

 

“START!” The robotic voice rings over the intercom, signaling them to move. Izuku’s practically flying towards the phone signal, easily jumping from building to building and climbing up things.

 

“Midoriya?!” Sero calls as he’s easily passed. You may have a great quirk for this, but I’ve spent years climbing buildings like a playground. It’s like Eraserhead once said; We’re learning not to hesitate.

 

There’s a slight yelp from somewhere behind him. It seems like Sero lost his footing or something.

 

Izuku Midoriya is first to make it to All Might’s location.

 

“Young Midoriya, just how did you do that?!” All Might asks in the same happy manner he asked Toshi. Only now he’s keeping his distance. Izuku pulls out his phone and turns it to All Might.

 

“I tracked your location, Big Guy. Then made a line to the center, not bothering to take any shortcuts that other kids would’ve taken because they’re scared of falling.” All Might stares at him a long time, mouth hanging open.

 

“Is my location that easy to track?” Is what he finally asks.

 

“No, but it’s easy enough for me to get it. Other people probably won’t unless they’re very good at what they do.”

 

“I-I see.” It takes a few more minutes for Sero to finish the race, and even then more time for the others to finish as well.

 

“Midoriya! That was amazing!” Sero hooks an arm around Izuku and affectionately rubs the top of his head.

 

“I tried m-my best!” He chuckles, making sure to duck a bit under Sero’s touch. “But you were amazing! It’d be so… so fun to swing around with a quirk like yours!”

 

“Woah, Midoriya, easy there. Sero might explode from the sudden compliments.” Ashido teases, pulling Sero off of him.

 


 

 

The switch between the Izuku Midoriya Aizawa knows and the Izuku Midoriya the students and faculty know was almost instantaneous. Toshinori tries not to openly stare at the show his student’s putting on. I’ll admit I’m rather impressed that he managed to find me first. Even if it slightly worries me that a high schooler can track my location like he’s looking up the closest hot dog stand. Toshinori talks to all of the students as a group about what they all could have done better. When he gets to Young Midoriya, he can’t actually think of anything.

 

“Young Midoriya, the class seems eager for some pointers from you. Would you mind giving advice if you have some?” I too would also like to know how you approach this.

 

“That-That’s so nice of you! Your compliments are going to spoil me rotten!” As Midoriya says it, Bakugou is seen rolling his eyes more than usual. Maybe pairing them up for the exam is a good idea after all, they have a clear dislike of each other, and future heroes can’t let that come between them. "I just focus on trusting my body to do what I want it to. I f-focus on not being so scared that I'll fall. Even if I do, it's okay. I know I'll just get back up again." That was very wise of you, Midoriya. 

 

The class leaves for the locker rooms, and All Might subtly calls Midoriya. Although, Shinsou refuses to leave.

 

“Shinsou, I’d like a word alone with Midoriya please?”

 

“He knows everything you have to ask. It’s either he stays or we both leave.” Midoriya snaps at him. All Might nods in understanding, wondering how long until Aizawa’s father-senses go off.

 

“Very well. Young Midoriya, I’ve noticed that you have an entirely different demeanor when speaking to faculty and your classmates than you do with Aizawa and I. Honestly, I’d like to know which is the real you.” Shinsou and Midoriya share a look.

 

“Yes.” Midoriya answers.

 

Did he not hear my question properly? Wait, why are you two leaving?!

Chapter Text

Naomasa stares blankly at his screen, trying to make a choice. Sansa watches him from the doorway.

 

“Sir, what’s that on your ears?” He asks, coming closer to inspect. Naomasa laughs a bit, feeling his face redden in embarrassment.

 

“Hair dye. I’ve gotten quite a few greys over the past few years and they don’t suit me.” I think we all know what- or who- has caused them.

 

“I see. It’s understandable. What are you looking at?” Naomasa pats his friend lightly on the head as he comes around the desk. “Oh, the leaked footage of the Commissioner General?”

 

“Yeah,” He sighs, “They haven’t decided if he’s lost his job over it. Yes he was at gunpoint, but it shows he willingly accepted the bribe first.”

 

“I’d fire him. It doesn’t matter if he were at gunpoint. There were children who could’ve gotten hurt and several civilians there. I would’ve gladly given my life before giving in to that villain.”

 

“That villain is a UA student’s uncle.” Sansa stands straighter. No one else knows he’s Oni. Luckily, there’s fake reasons prepared. “ We need to get him before he causes more harm. Not to mention having a villain in the family could stain the student’s hero career.”

 

“Does this student know?”

 

“Yes. It was originally under wraps but Oni has forced more knowledge of it out into the open.”

 

“Why does Oni want him?”

 

“Honestly, we don’t know.” Well, we don’t know all of the facts, but we know that it’s most likely revenge for killing Mikumo and Inko Midoriya. Still, it’s classified.

 

“Naomasa, I don’t need your quirk to know you’re lying.”

 

“Sansa-”

 

“Keep your secrets. I trust you have good enough reason to. But don’t ever hesitate to ask me for assistance.”

 

“Thank you.”

 

“So, what’s your top priority regarding all this?” Naosama hums, unsure of it himself.

 

“Oni has more power over the public, but Hisashi Midoriya is a villain and escaped criminal. Hisashi Midoriya is the top priority. We just have to get him before Oni does.”

 


 

 

It feels like it’s been forever since Izuku was in Aizawa’s house. The bed feels stiffer compared to Hawks’ bed. Then again, it’s better than the bed in his apartment.

 

“He did what?” Aizawa asks outside his door.

 

“All Might asked him which Izuku is the ‘real one’ or whatever. Then Izuku gave a weirdly vague answer and we ran away.” Toshi answers.

 

“I literally told him not to sass All Might.” He asked for it!

 

“He did everything but listen to you, honestly.” What kind of brother are you?!

 

“CAN Y’ALL SHUT THE HELL UP?” Izuku yells from his bed. Aizawa opens the door to glare.

 

“Go back to sleep, you brat.” He seethes, one hand wrapped around his capture weapon. He seemed relieved when I gave it back to him. He mentioned something about preferring one that’s already broken in.

 

“I can’t sleep with you guys yapping outside the door!” Toshi snickers. Aizawa has instated a new rule: After school Izuku must take at least an hour long nap so he can both rest and give Aizawa his own time to relax. It’s not fair that Toshi doesn’t have a naptime.

 

“Fair point, but were you really sleeping if you could hear us?” Aizawa points out.

 

“....Shut up.”

 

“Thought so. Now, I have to go on my patrol tonight, I expect you guys to behave for once. Hizashi will be doing his radio show.” Aizawa sounds like he already knows this is futile.

 

“Yes, sir.” Izuku grins at the increasingly fed up look on Aizawa’s face.

 

“Midoriya, if I even see the color green tonight I’m beating you up and dragging your ass to the station.”

 

“I’d like to see you try.”

 


 

 

So, apparently Aizawa was serious about dragging Izuku to the station. He’s wrapped up in the capture weapon. kind of letting whatever happen. I want to see how this plays out. Aizawa keeps looking over at him, aware that Izuku didn’t put up much of a fight.

 

“I hate to tell you this, but if you don’t let me go I won’t be able to disable a video that’ll automatically upload at midnight.” Aizawa freezes for a split second before continuing his route to the station.

 

“Whatever it is, we can deal with it.”

 

“Yes, but you don’t want to.”

 

“Do you ever rest? Genuinely asking here.” Izuku hums.

 

“No, there’s not enough time for sleep.” Aizawa snorts at the statement like it’s offensive yet true comedy. “You’d know that well, Mr. Designer Eyebags.” Once at the station, all the on-duty officers draw their weapons, following as Aizawa brings him straight to Tsuki. “Hey Dad.”

 

“Oni.”

 

“Oh come on, you’re not happy to see your favorite son in custody?”

 

“I’m not your father.” Ouch.

 

“You are NOT the father!” Izuku mimics the line from a show. “Jeez, tough crow-OW!” Aizawa holds him upside down, hitting his head on the floor. He gets quirk suppressing cuffs slapped on his wrist. “Oh, pretty bracelets. What’s next, a matching noose of a necklace?”

 

“You two play nice, I’m going to be elsewhere.” Aizawa yawns as he leaves. Tsuki watches on as officers try and take off Izuku’s mask. One ends up with a broken nose and the other gets his hand bitten.

 

“Just leave the mask on.” Tsukauchi gives up, shooing them out of them investigation room. “So, why’d you let yourself get caught?”

 

“Who says I didn’t just get my perky ass handed to me?” Twenty minutes until midnight.  

 

“My quirk. So, what’s your plan? What country-wide mayhem do you plan on causing? I need head starts, Oni.” Aw, he’s trying to keep up.

 

“Keep me locked up and we’ll find out.” Actually, I plan on releasing both videos regardless of what happens tonight. I just got a bit bored.

 

“I guess we will.” Is Tsuki talking back to Izuku? Wow, I’m impressed. It only took how many years for you to be less than professional with me? It’s not that it matter all that much, seeing as Izuku doesn’t want to mess with Tsuki like this. No, he wants to get on the man’s nerves by messing with everyone but him. Any moment now.

 

“Tsuki, can you say “Every fire alarm in a mile radius going off’ five times fast?”

 

“Every fire alarm-?” Every alarm except the station’s goes off, sending Tsuki on his feet and out of the room. He has guards come in to keep an eye on Izuku.

 

“You guys really are easy to trick.” Izuku yawns.

 

“What are you talking about?” One of the officers takes a step back, almost reflexively.

 

“I mean, no one noticed your guns were all replaced with highly realistic Nerf guns!” I’m lying.

 

“That’s not true! We can just-”

 

“You can just what? Fire in a small, closed area? What happens if you hit me? That’s joblessness for you. Technically, you’re unprovoked. You guys can’t even fire if I’m telling the truth.” It’s amazing, what one little lie can do to adults. All of them were too busy looking at their guns and none of them realized Izuku broke the metacarpal bones in his hand to slip it out of the cuff. Before any of them notice, he snatches his bo staff out of his suit and knocks two of four officers out. He holds the others at gunpoint as he grabs the key to the cuffs.

 

“Did you do all shit to escape on purpose?” Looks I’ve found the smartest officer. He has ot go first.

 

“Consider it a training round for both of us?” The clock on the wall shows that he has about nineteen seconds left until midnight.

 

The officer moves to grab his radio.

 

“Nope, don’t think about it. Who knows if this gun is real or not?” The officer releases the radio, holding a hand up. They’re in a standoff until…

 

“C Minor. Give me C minor.” Audio from every phone and electronic device with a screen plays the same video at the same time. The remaining officers are distracted enough for Izuku to move and take them out as well. “Where have all the good men gone? And where are all the Gods?”

 

So, Izuku may or may not have recreated the best scene from the second Shrek movie as a means to create a distraction. He’s wearing his mask, but wearing Fairy Godmother’s glasses over it. He robbed a Prom Shop for a dress that closely resembled the sparkly red one from the movie.

 

Toshi doesn’t know how to play piano, but he can fake it well enough as Izuku lays across it singing. Movie magic.

 

Izuku sneaks out of the room and into Tsukauchi’s office. It wasn’t too hard to pick the lock. Once in, he both locks it and sticks a chair under it. There are two vents and one window. The top vent to the roof is the best course for him. Until then, he has some files to get.

 

Security Question: The name of Naomasa Tsukauchi’s dearest friend.

 

Izuku types. Sansa Tamakawa.

 

[Answer is INCORRECT.]

 

What the hell? He doesn’t have friends! Izuku snoops around the office, resorting to breaking the lock on his desk after a few minutes. His wallet and house keys are left inside the drawer. Tempting, but no. Well… He opens the wallet for clues, first seeing a picture of him and his department huddled around his office. Next is a picture of him and Tamakawa. Then is… Holy shit. An actual hard question! It’s a picture of him and a familiar skinny man, looking like it was taken a few years ago. They’re outside of a hospital.

 

All Might’s real name has always been top secret information, but getting into the database of the Hero Public Safety Commission was laughably easy. Izuku heads back to the computer.

 

Toshinori Yagi.

 

[Answer is CORRECT]

 

He gets into the computer as the sound of him singing immediately takes over the screen a moment. Almost at the bridge, I’m running out of time. It takes a few minutes, but he manages to get all data on Hisashi onto a flashdrive.

 

“-I COULD SWEAR THERE IS SOMEONE SOMEWHERE WATCHING ME!” The doorknob shakes. Fuck. He exits out of all tabs and locks the computer back up.

 

“Oni! Open the door!” Tsukauchi screams, the door visibly moving from him slamming against it. If I leave quietly, they might give up. No, they won’t.

 

“See ya, Tsuki!” Izuku yells back, hopping up from where he’s standing on the desk and into the ceiling vent.

 

Once outside, he sees nothing but helicopter lights and the iconic blue and red flashing of the police. Huh, they really think this crossed the line? The recreation of the Shrek scene ends, and the new, real video starts. Izuku’s safe, he can escape while law enforcement scrambles to get the video off. It’s going from relatively harmless, to ‘Oh boy this is a literal manhunt’ kind of danger. Honestly, Izuku’s living for it.

 

“Now that I have your attention,” Oni speaks to the camera, still in his dress. “This goes out to anyone listening. There’s a villain on the loose that I want. I know you freaks don’t work for free so I have an offer. Anyone who can bring me the fire-breathing villain known as Hisashi Midoriya to me will get anything your heart desires. I haven’t been stopped before, so I won’t stop until I get what you want as your reward. Anyone can partake in this. Civilians, heroes, villains, cops. Anyone. Just bring him alive and you win the game. That’s all, folks.” He blows a kiss ot the camera as Catspiracy cuts the feed.

 

Well, my message went out loud and clear. I need to go home and sleep.

 

After all, I have an exam tomorrow.

 


 

 

Katsuki saw the videos last night, he knows Deku is losing his mind entirely. So why is he paired up with the fucker for their exam?! They’re on the bus there, both students sitting in back.

 

“I figured you’d sit with All Might, Kacchan, you’re actually a fan of him.” Deku whispers. I didn’t choose to sit next to this dweeb, it just happened. Did Deku just imply he’s not a fan of All Might like Katsuki is?

 

Is Katsuki the biggest All Might stan in the class? I’d die before letting those clingy fucks know.

 

“And I thought you’d sit with him, seeing as you try so damn hard to make people think you’re a harmless nerd and not a literal spawn of hell.”

 

“Shut it.”

 

“Make me, Scarface.” Deku glares at him. Are they friends? Proper rivals? It doesn’t matter. Katsuki doesn’t care. Not at all.

 

“You’re lucky I want to get a good grade on this test.”

 

“If you wanted a good grade on the test, you should’ve stayed your ass home and slept.” Deku rolls his eyes in response. “You’re pissed because I’m right.” Deku pushes him, causing Katsuki to push back. Next thing they know, they’re practically sparring in the back of the bus.

 

“Boys!” All Might shouts. Katsuki doesn’t miss the way Deku freezes at the raising of his voice.

 

“What?!” Katsuki calls back, firm grip still on Deku’s collar.

 

“This is precisely why you’ve been paired up! You two never get along! Will it really be so difficult for you two to work together in order to beat me?!” What? Who the fuck said Deku and I don’t get along. They’ve honestly been getting along better than they have their whole lives. Sometimes, fighting and making fun of each other is just how a friendship works. At least, with this newfound lack of hatred between them.

 

“Right.” Deku grumbles, getting All Might to turn back around. “We have to act like we hate each other.” He whispers to Katsuki.

 

“We fucking do. I hate you.”

 

“That’s the spirit, Kacchan!” I’m going to have a fucking headache after this, aren’t I?  “Aizawa wasn’t there to decide which students get what teacher. This is an awful matchup, according to him. There’s wasn’t enough time to have me switch with another student, because it’d mess up the other dynamics already in place.” So Deku and All Might are a bad mix, but apparently All Might isn’t fully aware of it? No, if Aizawa knows, he probably scolded All Might like a fucking student. So All Might is just going about this all wrong.

 

The bus stops at the fake city their exam is in, letting them off. Katsuki doesn’t comment on how Deku is practically hiding behind him, or at least making sure he stays between him and All Might.

 

All Might leaves for the center of the city, and they’re left to wait outside the entrance.

 

“We’re not running.” They both say at the same time, glaring at each other the moment they realize it.

 

“We can beat All Might, I’m going to.” Katsuki announces.

 

“Everyone, including him, may forget it. But I know that beefy fuck is human.”

 

Beefy?

 


 

 

Toshinori has royally fucked up. How did they get here? How many ‘wrong things’ did he say to break Midoriya like this? 

 

The boy’s body is lowered closer to the ground, arms dangling. Midoriya’s trembling with nothing but pure fury. All Might doesn’t seem to have landed a scratch on the kid. The street's narrowing, almost closing in and focusing his sight on Midoriya only. He screams, baring teeth.

 

“What, are you mad that you’re wrong?! That I’m going to be a hero despite that half-assed speech you gave me all those years ago?! Huh?! Well guess what, at the end of the day I know I can’t beat All Might the Greatest Hero, but I sure as hell can take on Toshinori Yagi, you skeletal disappointment of a fucking human.”

 

Chapter Text

“START!” The electronic voice calls. Izuku and Kacchan look to each other with a short nod.

 

“He’s probably going to attack down the center of the city, we should go around the back.” Izuku suggests, already running to the entrance. Kacchan snorts, shoving him aside.

 

“You think All Might’s just going to attack us from wherever the fuck he is? He’s not a fucking god, Deku.”

 

“He can alter wind pressure with a punch, imagine if he directed it at us children.”  Whether or not Kacchan agrees, he’s still going with Izuku around the back alleys. “Besides, he’s probably already expecting us to attack.”

 

“He’s expecting you to attack too? Don’t think I haven’t seen the way you freeze every time he so much as looks at you.” Kacchan may be a caramel-scented dickwad most of the time, but he’s an incredibly observant one.

 

“That’s a good question. Honestly, All Might has no idea what’s up with me. I need to do something he won’t expect.” At that, Kacchan stops midstep to stare at him.

 

“You have a fucking plan, don’t you?”

 

“Not a plan, no. An idea-”

 

“A shitty one, probably. Alright, the hell are we going to do?” He huffs and cross his arms, watching Izuku closely.

 

“How good are you at parkour? And how are your acting skills?”

 


 

 

It’s been a few minutes, and Toshinori hasn’t seen any sign of life from his students. He even set off a punch through the center of the city for good measure! Yet he heard no yells, no sighs of frustration.

 

Did those two get too into a fight to cooperate? Are they alright? Toshinori used to think that Bakugou would beat Young Midoriya in combat, but it seems they are equally gifted.

 

Bakugou seems to fight based on instinct, while Midoriya fights from experience. It’s obvious Midoriya has gotten his fair share of action, but why? How? This boy is an utter mystery, so much so that Toshinori cannot predict how he might act.

 

Will he run and go to the exit for the sole purpose of avoiding him? Will he fight in an attempt to hurt Toshinori the way he’s hurt him? Both are understandable.

 

Toshinori would almost have been bested, if not for the subtle change in air around him.

 

He whips around, seeing Midoriya leaping from a roof that is much too high for him to jump from. He’ll get hurt! Toshinori moves in to catch him, momentarily forgetting his role of villain. Just as Toshinori reaches out, a scream is heard.

 

“ALL MIGHT! GET READY TO DIE!” He barely gets a hand out to shield as Bakugou uses his gauntlet on him. Block Midoriya from the blast- The heat stings. In the smoke, he looses sight on Midoriya as well.

 

“Kacchan! You messed up my attack!” The smoke clears, and Toshinori watches on as his students fight with each other, ignoring him almost entirely.

 

“No, you shitty nerd! You messed up mine!” The two fight over Bakugou’s gauntlet, trying to tar it away from the other. “Hands off!”

 

“Make me! We’re supposed to be a team! We had a plan!”

 

“I had a better plan that you didn’t want to fucking listen to!”

 

“Boys!” Toshinori shouts, getting their attention. They freeze in place, heads slowly turning to him. “I have half a mind to fail your exam right now! You two are so caught up in your fight that you fail to realize that I’m the enemy here!” Why are they looking at me like that.

 

“Oh, we know you’re the enemy.” Midoriya hisses with a smile. Bakugou turns to him and blasts the gauntlet again, hitting him. It’s dulled down from the first attack, so why do they look like that’s not the real thing planned? Heat hits his back moments after there’s an explosion of sound. “That roof I jumped off of? His other gauntlet is up there, I rigged it to go off on cue.” They got me. They knew how I’d act and how I’d worry over their fighting.

 

“Well done.” He admits.

 

“Oh, no. When we’re done with you, you won’t be well done. You’ll be burnt to a crisp