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Atop the Telephone Wire

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      “Did you see?” A tall girl with a surgical mask turned her phone to face her friend. Her eyes narrowed with worry. “Another attack. There’s been a lot lately, do you mind walking home with me after class?”

      “Do you even have to ask? Of course I will! I know how much of a scaredy cat you are!” Her friend answered enthusiastically as she whipped her scorpion tail to show her confidence.

      A mutant Quirk, Izuku inferred.

      Izuku overheard the exchange between the two girls near the end of class. He was sitting near them in his desk where multiple notebooks lay overlapping each other. His collection of notes had grown a lot since he’d entered high school, he was on his seventeenth notebook now. He found it much easier to talk to people without battle-oriented Quirks since he could usually get more information out of them. There were some, such as the two girls sitting close to him, that had more dangerous Quirks like toxic breath and scorpion features, but he wasn’t afraid. Since this school didn’t have a hero course, it wasn’t like they had much experience in battle.

      It was a public high school with a relatively easy entrance exam, which is probably why they accepted a Quirkless student without much thought. Not only do they get an obedient student with good grades, they also got extra publicity for being such a ‘generous’ school for taking a ‘disabled’ child. Izuku didn’t mind too much, it wasn’t like he hadn’t been through worse. At least all the bullying has been psychological rather than physical.

      It seems none of Kacchan’s ‘friends’ followed me to this school.

      Izuku sighed and looked at his watch. About ten minutes left. He began to pack up a little early so he could check the news of the villain attack on his phone. He scrolled through the gossip before he reached an article with words in large red text spelling out ‘alert’. As he read through, he made some mental notes about the incident. It seemed like a typical villain; He was a thief that got caught up in a few confrontations, multiple injured and no casualties. His Quirk was undetermined, but from the injuries, the police assume it was fire related.

      Izuku was snapped back to reality when he heard the familiar chime of the bell signaling the day’s end. He quickly swung his backpack over his shoulder and sped towards the classroom doors. Most of the other students were still gathered in the room separated by their cliques when he left. The hallways were also relatively empty since not everyone races to the exit as soon as the bell rings.

      “Excuse me, Midoriya? May I have a word?” His homeroom teacher popped his head out of the classroom. His brown mandibles protruded from the sides of his mouth making him look intimidating despite being one of the nicest teachers in the school. Another mutant Quirk.

      Izuku halted his steps and silently groaned before turning around to walk back to the classroom doors. This was the last thing he needed right now.

      “Yes, Sir?” the boy asked with an unintentional hast in his voice.

      “I just wanted to remind you that clubs are still accepting new members. It’s not mandatory, of course, but I feel like you’d enjoy some of the activities available.”

      “Oh, thanks for telling me, Kuwagata-sensei, but I really don’t think I have the time to devote to a club right now.” Izuku gave him a kind smile. It wasn’t like he wanted to join anything even if he did have the time, but he tried to be as polite as possible.

      The faster he lets this go, the faster I can leave.

      “I see… well, I guess that can’t be helped. If you ever change your mind, I’m sure I can pull some strings to get you into one even after the registration deadline,” He grinned brightly and even though he had no ill intentions, his Quirk made him look terrifying. “Oh, and Midoriya? I know things can get pretty tough in high school, but you will always have people to talk to, people who care. Don’t forget that.”

      “Ah, y-yeah! Thanks!” Izuku awkwardly waved his teacher goodbye and jogged down the hallway. When he was out of sight, he leaned back against the wall and let out a long, heavy breath.

      Does he think I’m depressed? Izuku asked himself. He could understand that conclusion; he’d been distant, his eyes were forming dark circles from lack of sleep, and he was being secretive about his life outside of school. He was fine though! He didn’t want anyone to worry about him, especially when many others needed that concern more than he did.

      He ran a hand through his hair and pushed himself off the wall. He would need to address this issue with his teacher later, for now, he had some things to do. He dashed out the front doors of the school and jumped the stairs that led to the courtyard. He took off passed the gates, seeing a few puzzled looks from the students outside. The roads were narrow and empty. Unusual considering the good weather, but Izuku knew that many people had been cautious of the villain sighting in the area and were probably avoiding the streets until things calmed down.

      As he was approaching his apartment building, he glanced up at a telephone wire where a pair of red shoes hung. They weren’t there that morning, but he’d seen a lot of delinquents in the area recently and they had a reputation of throwing shoes like that. He tried to ignore the thought of delinquent gangs in his neighborhood and continued on his way through the parking lot of the apartment complex. He made his way around the building to the back where the garbage was kept. He dropped his bag and kicked it behind the dumpster.

      Izuku took out his phone and searched his contacts for his mother. He tapped the ‘call’ button and pressed the phone to his ear.

      “Hello? Izuku? Are you staying late again?” Inko’s voice crackled over the speaker.

      “Yeah, the club’s doing a big project on Kamui Woods, so they want me to help fact check. It might take a while, so you should have dinner without me. I’ll find something on the way home, okay?” He hated lying to her, but this secret would be much safer if it was kept.

      The other was silent for a moment, “alright… Just be careful on your way back… I love you, sweetie!”

      “Love you too, Mom.” He ended the call and walked over to the other side of the dumpster where a black backpack covered in decorative chains was waiting for him. He picked it up and stuffed his phone in the front pocket. He opened the main compartment and pulled out a dark green hoodie, a black respirator and a pair of gloves. He unbuttoned his uniform and slipped the hoodie over his head, he fiddled with the All Might silhouette that was designed on the front and straighten it out before putting the respirator over his mouth. The hood of the costume had snaps that attached to the respirator to prevent it from falling off his head. He couldn’t risk exposing his very conspicuous curly green hair after all.

      He gathered his school uniform and shoved it into the bag before swinging it over his back and making a mad dash back into the street. He reached over to a side zipper on his bag and pulled out a small metal grappling device, swinging it onto the roof of a short building. He was launched up into the air and somersaulted onto the roof, continuing his run as he jumped from building to building.

      No, he may not have gotten into UA, the prestigious hero school, like his childhood friend and bully. And no, he may not have a Quirk or ever be a traditional ‘hero’ like all the people he’s looked up to throughout the years, but he could still do the one thing he wanted to do all his life: save people.