"Was I wrong?
Was there hope all along?
-The World Alive, Dreamer"
Hey guys! Welcome to the first chapter of my 2019 Tododeku Big Bang story!~ This has been a work in progress since December, and I'm really happy with the final result! I'm super excited to be sharing this story with you guys, and I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did!
My artist was https://obsucuria.tumblr.com and it was an absolute pleasure working with them!! their art is absolutely f a n t a s t i c so go check them out!!
And now, to the story~
Inko Midoriya smiles down at the small bundle in her arms, rocking the baby back and forth. She hums quietly as she plants a kiss on his forehead. The baby giggles in reply, reaching out to his mother when she pulls back. Inko lets out a light laugh at this and holds out a finger for him to grab onto. The baby in her arms reaches for her finger without hesitation, smiling up at her. Two arms wrap around her from behind and Inko looks up to see black curls and freckles. “Hisashi,” She says joyfully.
Her husband smiles in response. “Someone seems extra happy today.” He notes as he looks down at the baby. He gets a gurgle in response.
Inko giggles. “He’s been full of energy since I woke him up from his nap.” She explains.
“I see,” Hisashi pulls away from her to open his arms, motioning for her to hand him their son. Inko complies and Hisashi holds him tight. “Inko, look,” She looks at where he was pointing, seeing their son looking around at everything with wonder.
“Itsuki has your eyes."
“He has your sense of wonder.”
They speak at the same time and when they’re done they look at each other and laugh. Wanting to join, Itsuki begins to laugh as well, making them smile. Inko runs her hand through the tiny bit of green hair that was growing on his head, looking at Itsuki with nothing but love. Hisashi looks at Itsuki as well, holding him like he was the most precious thing in the whole world (which to both Hisashi and Inko, he was). “I wonder what quirk he’ll have when he grows up.” Hisashi mumbles softly.
Inko looks over at him, shaking her head. “You and your quirks.” She teases. Hisashi was a scientist who specialized in the study of quirks. It was something he liked to talk about often and she suspected he had been that way even before they met. Once Itsuki was born, Hisashi created theory after theory about what type of quirk he would have.
Hisashi smiles almost cheekily. “What can I say, Inko? Quirks are so fascinating!” Itsuki lets out a joyful gurgle, as if he were agreeing. The two adults look at him, smiling.
“Dada…” Itsuki calls, using the side of his crib to hold himself up. Hisashi stands at the door, looking at his son with a small smile. He walks over to the crib, patting Itsuki’s head.
“Hey there, Itsuki,” He greets. “Did you just wake up from your nap? Was it good?” Itsuki throws his arms up, making grabby motions. Hisashi chuckles at this and gently hoists the boy up, holding him. Itsuki giggles slightly when Hisashi’s hand grazes his belly. Hisashi chuckles once more, knowing he found one of Itsuki’s many ticklish spots. Holding the boy securely, Hisashi tickles him, making Itsuki laugh more and more.
He doesn’t realize that the items in Itsuki’s room are floating. He doesn’t see the toys inside the toy bin start floating out and into the air. Hisashi doesn’t notice anything is floating toward him and Itsuki until he gets smacked in the face by a teddy bear. Startled, he pulls the stuffed toy off of his face and stares at it. Suddenly, Hisashi chuckles dryly as he puts Itsuki back into his crib. “So...you have a quirk…” He says quietly, sounding dejected and distant. “Signs of quirks usually don’t appear until a child is four years old, but there are some cases where signs appear before a child turns four, however it is rare."
Itsuki looks up at him with wide, curious eyes. “Dada!” He exclaims.
Hisashi pats his head gently and with that same air of distance in his voice, “I was hoping you would’ve been quirkless, it would’ve saved me an inconvenience, but then again, your quirk isn’t exactly inconvenient.” No longer sounding so distant, Hisashi almost sounded delighted over the opportunity presented to him. “Your case Itsuki, is quite rare. Quite rare indeed.” He looks at Itsuki with a slight gleam in his eyes. “I’m sorry about this Itsuki, but you’ll see that this will benefit the both of us in the future..."
Inko wasn’t home to hear Itsuki’s cries.
No one ever noticed the odd ticks Hisashi Midoriya had, outside of his love for the nature of quirks. They knew he enjoyed talking about quirks (once someone got him started, no one really knew how to get him to stop), and he loved his wife to pieces.
Originally, Hisashi had had no intention of marrying Inko. When they met he had only thought of her as a pleasant distraction, that was, until her confession. They had been seeing each other between his studies for several months. It was one such time between his studies when they were in the library and during this time Inko cornered him to express her feelings. This had caused him to pause for a moment, thinking, ‘this could benefit me.’
That day Hisashi informed Inko that he shared her feelings and a vision of the future he wanted to see began to form. They had been together for about one year before he proposed to her and it was only a short nine months after their wedding when Itsuki was born. For Hisashi, those had been the first steps towards his vision of the future. Those had been the easier steps. The foreseen harder ones would come later. If he miscalculated, his vision of the future could be delayed.
It wouldn’t be long before one of those hard steps arrived. Today was one of those steps when Inko was out of the house running some errands. This left Hisashi and Itsuki home alone for father and son time. Entering Itsuki’s room, Hisashi finds him playing on the ground right by his toy box. Itsuki looks up at his father, a big smile on his face. “Dada!” He exclaims with a giggle. Hisashi bends down to pick him up and Itsuki happily reaches his arms up. Clinging onto his father’s shirt he was curious as to where his father would take him today. With Itsuki in his arms, Hisashi leaves and goes into the main room of the apartment. Itsuki quizzically looks at his father. “Dada?” Ignoring Itsuki, Hisashi slips into his shoes and grabs the bag he placed on the couch. While reaching for the bag, the front door opens unexpectedly.
Walking through the front door, Inko catches sight of Hisashi holding Itsuki in his arms. She smiles at first, thinking of how much she loved her two boys. She always smiled when she thought of them spending quality time together. She sees the two of them dressed, Itsuki in his pyjamas and Hisashi dressed in his usual attire. She doesn’t think anything of it until she sees the out of place the traveling bag Hisashi had in his hand. “Hisashi? What are you doing?” Inko’s voice stops him.
“Mama!” Itsuki exclaims happily, eyes lighting up when he sees her. Hisashi turns around to see Inko standing in the doorway, a bewildered look on her face, and her smile slowly changing.
“Hisashi, what’s going on?” She asks once more, making him sigh.
Putting down the bag, Hisashi reaches to pinch the bridge of his nose, while looking directly into her eyes, coldly. “I really wasn’t expecting you to be home so soon. I had hoped not to make this harder than it had to be. I had planned on leaving with Itsuki before you got home.” He sees her flinch in surprise.
She stares at him for a while, trying to break down and understand what her husband was saying. “Hisashi I don’t— I don’t understand, why are you taking him?” Why are you leaving? She screams in her head. She runs through every possible reason she could think of to justify why he would leave. He has the perfect job, the son he wanted, and they have a good marriage. So why? Why was he leaving and taking their son with him?
“He’s my son.” Hisashi replies, as if it makes perfect sense to him. It’s all he offers as an explanation as he picks up his bag and starts toward the door. Inko moves to block him.
“Don’t take him away, please! Hisashi, I’m begging you, don’t take him from me! You can’t do this!” She cries, latching onto his arm, trying to stop him from moving any further. Hisashi ignores her. “Why are you doing this?! I—I thought we were a family!” Inko exclaims. This makes Hisashi stop and look down at her. Inko freezes as she stares up into cold, lifeless eyes. Eyes that suddenly made her feel very insignificant. This is not the man she fell in love with. Who is this stranger wearing her husband’s face?
“A family...huh?” Hisashi says. “You must be joking. You were nothing but a pawn in my game of chess.” Along with the coldness in his eyes, that statement shook her, causing her to stumble back. The realization of what was going on slowly causes tears to well up in her eyes. Overwhelmed with the coldness and the realization of her two boys being taken away, she collapses against the door. Sliding down to the floor, all she could do was watch as Hisashi walks out the door with Itsuki in his arm.
Itsuki watches as his mother falls against the door, sliding to the ground. He can tell she’s upset which confuses him as he’s never sensed her upset before. Itsuki looks toward his father and suddenly feels the coldness of his emotions. He doesn’t know this man. Who was this stranger holding him? Why was his mother crying? Overwhelmed, Itsuki begins to cry as he reaches out to his mother. He wants to comfort her and escape from the cold man holding him.
Inko, hearing Itsuki’s cries, instinctively begins to get up off the ground as she reaches for her little boy. Hisashi, realizing that the scene would begin to attract unwanted attention, looks towards Inko and says, “That’ll be enough of that. Sleep.” Suddenly, Inko’s body feels heavy, her eyes beginning to close. The last thing Inko sees is this stranger telling Itsuki to sleep and his small body going limp. Her last thought as sleep overcomes her is will she ever see her two boys again?
Looking down at the sleeping child in his arm, Hisashi saying to himself as much as to the child, “From this moment on, you’ll be known as Izuku. Izuku Midoriya.” Then with a smile of satisfaction, he walks out of the house knowing that Hisashi and Itsuki Midoriya would disappear that day.
Izuku’s first and oldest memory is of warmth and laughter. There’s two people talking but he can’t decipher what they’re saying to each other.
One of the voices belongs to a woman, he knows that much. He assumes it’s his mother, but he doesn’t remember much about her. He has dreams sometimes, where he gets hints as to who she was to him. Sometimes he hears soft humming, as he is rocked back and forth, cradled in her arms. Sometimes he hears her crying. On those nights when he has that dream, there’s a storm in his head, and tonight is no different.
He jolts awake, the woman’s cries echoing in his head. He can’t seem to forget the blurred images from his dream. All he can remember is green hair and tears. There is nothing else.
It bothers him. He can’t get rid of the blurry faces and the unknown feelings that come with the dream. Izuku lets himself fall back on his bed and he stares up at the ceiling. He tries to forget about the dream and fall back asleep. He closes his eyes but after ten minutes, he finds that he can’t sleep. There’s a storm raging in his head and Izuku can’t find a way to calm it. Murmuring, “Maybe some water will help.” He pushes himself up from his bed and stands. He turns toward his desk, grabs his analysis notebook and pen, and exits his room.
He walks into the kitchen and grabs a glass of water. Izuku takes a seat at the table and lets himself think. He flips open his notebook and begins to write. Ever since he was a child Izuku wanted to be a hero. He was fascinated with the idea of quirks and the world of heroes. Izuku wanted to be a hero more than anything. The only problem? He couldn’t be one, he was quirkless after all.
Izuku expected his father to be disappointed when the doctor informed them of the news, but he wasn’t. He appeared sad to learn his son was quirkless . He only patted him on the head and said apologetically, “I’m sorry, Izuku, I almost feel like it’s my fault. Destiny can be quite cruel.” Only time would tell how cruel destiny would be. Life would take a cruel twist a short time later as word spread in his neighborhood that he was quirkless.
Growing up, there was a park Izuku frequently visited with his father. While Izuku played with neighboring kids, his father mingled with the other parents. However, after the neighbors learned of his condition, the neighboring kids weren’t as eager to play with him. Some people would turn away in pity while others avoided him like the plague. Even his childhood friend turned against him and began to bully him.
In order to avoid the thoughts that plagued his mind, Izuku turned his attention to heroes. Whenever his thoughts would begin to spiral downwards, he distracted himself with studying popular heroes. He would spend his time studying every single detail about them he could.
Who knows, maybe his fascination with quirks was his father’s influence. After all, it was his father who taught him how to analyze and categorize quirks. Hearing his father talk about them so often, he couldn’t help but pick up his father’s attraction for the peculiar abilities that people possessed.
He wrote down every observation and every note he thought of. He studied their quirks and often picked them apart until he couldn’t anymore, until he began to grow jealous of them. He wished more than anything to have a quirk. The heroes he saw were so lucky. They were celebrated, praised, and most of all, accepted. He wanted his father to look at him the way he looked at heroes.
During the course of studying heroes, he came across one hero in particular; All Might. He tried to pick apart his quirk best he could but it never worked. Did All Might have a super strength quirk? Maybe a speed augmentation quirk? Izuku wasn’t sure. It was one of the world’s greatest mysteries and it was a challenge he couldn’t resist. Something about All Might compelled him, drew him in. Looking at All Might, he found himself being inspired by his acts of heroism.
Even though All Might was his number one curiosity, he was always stumbling upon other heroes that fascinated him. Kamui Woods was one such hero. While going over his notes on the recently debuted hero, Izuku let out a tired sigh. He’s been hunting for any new information he could get his hands on.
While searching for the information, the sound of a chair wheeling into the room and the kitchen light turning on catches his attention. He turns in his chair and sees his father. “F-Father!” Izuku exclaims in surprise. He watches as his father leans forward in his wheelchair.
“Izuku, what are you doing up so late?”
Izuku lets out a small nervous laugh, hoping his father wouldn’t be upset that he was still up. “I um...I woke up and couldn’t fall back asleep.” He explains. Judging from the way his father was looking at him with raised eyebrows, he wasn’t sure if he was believed.
“I see. Is there a particular reason why?”
Puzzled over the lack of his father’s reaction, Izuku frowns a bit. He wasn’t quite sure how to explain why he found himself awake at such an hour. “It’s um...it’s because of a dream I’ve been having the past couple of nights. It’s kind of been bugging me and I can’t stop wondering about it and because of that I’ve had trouble sleeping.”
His father observes Izuku for a few moments before nodding his head. “Would you like to talk about it?”
Apprehensively rubbing his hands together as he tends to do when he’s nervous, Izuku hesitates before agreeing. He was worried about how his father would react. “I keep having these dreams where I see a woman’s face but it’s blurry a-and I think it’s mom, but I don’t have a clear view of what’s going on. Everything feels warm and I can hear her humming and a part of me feels like it’s her.” He pauses. “I don’t understand why I’m having these dreams. I never even knew her, mom I mean, right? Why would I be dreaming about her?”
His father sighs quietly while reaching for the wheels of his chair, “The human mind has odd ways of coping with stressful situations and this is most likely yours. Your mind is creating these dreams of what you imagine your mother to have felt like to alleviate the burden of your stress.” He explains as he rolls his chair closer to Izuku and suddenly everything makes sense. Nodding, Izuku feels himself relax, as if a hand had reached out and gently squeezed his shoulder. “Now, go back to bed. Your lessons start early tomorrow.”
Izuku nods. “Good night, father.” He says as he gets up. Without a second glance he goes back to his room, like his dreams, his glass of water was forgotten. Hisashi stares at the half empty glass as he frowns in thought, wondering if this would be the last time.
“Good night, Izuku.” He says after his son has left the room. Hisashi lets out a tired sigh, one that has centuries worth of tiredness woven in. His eyes drift over to the open notebook on the table. “If only you knew, Izuku…”
"I remember thinking of impossible things
Of never backing down to impossibilities
-The World Alive, Dreamer"
As Izuku Midoriya jogs around town, he tries to avoid puddles from the recent storm. He has music playing in his earbuds as he observes the scenery around him. He sees people making their way to work and students heading to school. Izuku was a bit envious of them. He never had a chance to experience going to school. His father had him homeschooled, denying him the social interaction that public school would have granted him. Although he loves his father, he resents the idea of being kept in the house to learn, instead of being able to make friends and learn alongside them.
As he’s jogging, Izuku stops short just shy of running into somebody as his routine is interrupted by a sudden bang that echoes in the air. To Izuku, the bang sounded like a loud metal sheet falling to the ground. Looking around, Izuku sees a crowd gathering, most likely near the source of the bang. He moves toward the crowd, his curiosity getting the best of him.
“A villain!” Someone in the crowd exclaims. Looking in the direction of the villain, Izuku spots what could have been a metal tower but was now a bent and twisted pile of metal laying on the ground. The tower was most likely a victim of the villain’s rampage and the source of the bang he heard seconds before.
People in the crowd begin to murmur around him, some irritated and some excited, watching as the villain isn’t left unattended for long. A few heroes show up and Izuku recognizes them. ‘That’s Backdraft, Death Arms, oh, there’s that new hero, Kamui Woods!’ Izuku winces when a crowd of fangirls scream by his ear. He reaches for his yellow backpack (Izuku never leaves home without it) and pulls out his analysis notebook and a pen. He scribbles down his notes as he watches the fight.
“One look at you and I can tell exactly what you are!” A stranger exclaims with a smile. “A fanboy!” Izuku looks up, surprised, as his cheeks go red in embarrassment. He simply nods his head in reply. Thankfully, the stranger says nothing else.
Backdraft and Death Arms are dealing with the collateral damage while Kamui Woods deals with the villain. Kamui Woods, about to use his special move, is caught off guard when a giant foot suddenly punts the villain, causing him to go flying. The owner of the giant foot is a woman who introduces herself as Mt. Lady. Everyone is surprised by her sudden appearance, including Kamui Woods, whose thunder she just stole.
Excited by the appearance of the new heroine, Izuku hurriedly takes as many notes as he can, ignoring the clamor of people around him. He jots down the observations he makes about Mt. Lady’s height and costume, already theorizing about any special moves she may have. He then begins to note some obvious strengths and weaknesses of her quirk. As the villain is captured the crowd dies down and Izuku is still writing. He ends up mumbling out loud and the stranger from before laughs, overhearing him. “Taking notes, huh? Hoping to be a hero yourself, kid?” He asks.
Izuku looks up from his notes and bashfully smiles. “More than anything!” The stranger gives him a thumbs up and a few words of encouragement before he walks away. Izuku finishes his notes and puts his book back into his bag before he continues on his jog, a bit more pep in his step than before, and those puddles be damned.
When Izuku returns home he hears his father talking to someone. He decides to listen for a few more minutes before entering the room the voices are coming from. When he enters the room, Izuku sees his father in his chair, speaking with Shigaraki through a screen. “Shigaraki?” He mumbles quietly, mostly to himself. Tomura Shigaraki was someone who Izuku’s father took in a few years back. Izuku wasn’t old enough to know exactly how his father found Shigaraki, but the older boy has been around for quite a while.
His father turns to face Izuku. “Back from your jog so soon?” He asks.
Izuku nods. “There was a villain attack so the streets weren’t crowded.”
“I see,” He says, excusing himself from the conversation with Shigaraki. “Well, lets begin your lessons for the day.” He suggests as he rolls himself from the room, with Izuku following close behind. Now, Izuku was never shielded from knowing his father was a villain. He’s known for years, but he doesn’t know much. His father keeps his explanations vague whenever Izuku asks.
His father enters the room Izuku’s come to know as his classroom. He sits down at the table in the room, his notebooks already there waiting for him.
“Alright, let’s begin.”
Izuku’s lessons lasted eight hours, starting from early in the morning and ending late in the afternoon. After his lessons are over, he’s able to do whatever. So once his father dismisses him, Izuku heads out of the house with his favorite yellow backpack. He isn’t sure where he wants to go, maybe he’ll just walk around until he figures something out.
Izuku flips through the pages of his notebook, bored. As he’s walking, something comes up from behind him. “Ah, perfect!” A voice exclaims and suddenly Izuku becomes enveloped in slime. His first instinct is to fight, so he kicks and punches blindly. “Quit struggling kid, and this’ll all be over quickly.”
‘I-I can’t breathe..!’ His arms move to try to grab at the slime in his mouth. He can’t get a grip on it. He can barely breathe and his eyes start closing. ‘Father...I’m sorry…’ He thinks, hating the feeling of disappointing his father again. Before he could fall unconscious, a strong wind pressure blows the slime surrounding him away. Suddenly, he’s falling but a pair of arms catch him.
When Izuku wakes up, it’s to the feeling of something tapping his cheek. Slowly, his eyes begin to open. Yellow. Nothing but yellow. Blinking as he shakes his head, Izuku’s vision clears enough for him to realize that there’s a smile mixed in with the yellow. “Yo! Thought I lost you there for a second!”
Slowly, he places the voice and begins to realize who’s in front of him (who just saved him) and once he realizes, Izuku shrieks. “A-A-All Might?!” He’s pushing himself away before he realizes and his eyes are wide.
“Well, looks like you didn’t suffer any major injuries! Sorry about that back there young man! Usually I’m more aware of the surroundings and the civilians!” Putting a hand on his forehead, “But the sewer system is pretty hard to navigate!” He laughs. Izuku stares as his hero talks, stammering for words. “Anyways, you were a big help! Thank you!” All Might was thanking him?! “I’ve captured the evil doer!”
‘The most amazing hero in the whole world is standing right in front of me! This isn’t a dream, is it?!’ Izuku finally snaps out of his trance and begins fishing through his pockets and bag. “I need to get an autograph! I know I’ve got a pen in here somewhere!” He looks up at All Might, pleading, “Please sign my notebook!” He picks it up and flips it open, seeing it already signed. He bows as All Might gives him a thumbs up. The hero then puts the villain trapped in soda bottles into his pockets.
“Well, I better take this guy to the police. Thanks again for the help and stay safe young man!” He says with a small wave.
“W-Wait...you’re leaving? Already?” Izuku hates how clear the disappointment sounds in his voice.
“Pro heroes are constantly fighting time as well as enemies!” The hero says as he stretches out his legs. Izuku takes a small step forward, as if to stop him.
‘He can’t go yet...I have so many things I want to ask him…’
“Now stand back! I’m taking off!” All Might warns before he shoots into the air. “Thanks for your support!” He shouts to Izuku, unknowing to the weight on his leg. When he realizes that the boy has clung to his leg, he freaks. “Hey, hey, hey! What do you think you’re doing young man?!” He exclaims. “Let go, I love my fans but this is too much!” All Might shouts as he tries to get Izuku to loosen his grip.
“B-But we’re i-in midair! I-If I let g-go I’ll die!” Izuku exclaims, his voice wobbly thanks to flying.
All Might suddenly stops trying to push him off, realizing the boy was right. “Oh, right.”
“I-I just have a-a lot I want t-to ask you about! You’re m-my favorite hero A-All Might, please!”
All Might stares at the boy for a moment and sighs. “Alright, alright. Just keep your eyes and mouth shut.” Izuku nods and hides his face in the fabric of the hero’s pants. All Might grabs onto Izuku’s collar, making sure to hold on tightly. He hears the boy’s small whine of fear. Using his fist to cover up his cough, All Might looks in front of him. Some blood drips from his mouth and he frowns. ‘Shit…’
Izuku and All Might land on a rooftop, and Izuku has never been happier to be on the ground. His entire body is shaking. “My whole life...just flashed before my eyes…” He murmurs.
“Not a very smart move,” All Might begins. “Bang on the door for a while, someone will let you in. Now, I have to go! See you on the flip side!” The hero exclaims, waving as he walks towards the edge of the roof.
Izuku snaps out of his shakes and straightens up. “W-Wait not yet! One second, please!” He begs.
“No! I don’t have any time!”
‘Any time..?’ Ignoring the thought, Izuku stands up. “I have to know!”
‘I’m sorry, Izuku.’
‘Destiny can be quite cruel…’
He's worthless to his father, isn’t he? Compared to the world his father and eighty percent of the population lived in, Izuku is insignificant. Sometimes he feels like a failure, compared to others. He feels like he failed his father. Maybe if he had a quirk, or even if he could do something important, maybe then.
Addressing his anxieties to All Might, “Is it still possible to be a hero even without a quirk?” Clenching his fists and staring at the ground, he was so intent on getting out what he’d been wanting to ask the hero for years, he doesn’t notice All Might was no longer moving. “I’m a normal kid without any powers...can I ever hope to be someone like you?!”
Looking down at the child standing in front of him, the boy’s words run through All Might’s mind. The words of ‘without a quirk’ running on repeat. He thinks of the dangers of being a hero, the risks this child would have to take daily, and the repercussions that this moment could have on the boy’s future. His instincts kick in, yelling at him to say ‘it’s better to focus on being the best person you can be young man!’ Or ‘you don’t need a quirk to belong, young man.’ Nothing sounds right to him. A part of him, deep down, wants to reassure this young boy in front of him that the sky’s the limit, that he can do it because, quirk or no quirk, he still mattered to the world, and if he wanted to be a hero? Do it, quirk be damned.
However, All Might knows that as much as he wants to keep the boy’s dreams from being crushed (how many times had those dreams been trampled on while he was growing up?) he had to stop this here and now, before the young man could get himself injured. Or worse. So, he takes a breath, knowing that what he was about to say was probably one of the hardest things he’s ever had to do, and speaks. “Without a quirk..” Before he could finish the sentence, an intense pain shoots through him. Steam starts rolling off his body and he tenses up. ‘Oh no...not now dammit…not here!’
“Ever since I was a kid people teased me because I didn’t have a quirk. My lack of quirk drives me want to prove my worth to them, prove my worth to him.” He rubs his fingers together absentmindedly as he speaks. “Though...you’re probably confused about who ‘he’ is…” He trails off. “He’s someone important to me that loves quirks. He always talks about them and it makes sense, it’s his field of study.” Izuku stares at the ground, nervous and unsure. “But...I feel like because I’m quirkless...I failed him somehow. I want to show him that I can be strong enough to protect and reassure, even though I’m quirkless. I want to help him somehow.”
Izuku finally looks up. “I want to be a hero just like y-“ He’s interrupted by his scream of surprise. Standing in All Might’s place is an incredibly skinny (skeletal?) man. “Y-You deflated!” Izuku cries. “Are you actually All Might? You can’t be, right?!” He exclaims.
The man looks at him, letting out a small sigh. “I can assure you that I am All M-“ The blood pouring out of his mouth as he speaks makes Izuku shriek once more.
“I-Impossible!” Izuku cries in disbelief.
“You know how guys at the pool are always sucking in and flexing and trying to look buff?” All Might asks as he wipes the blood from his chin. “I’m like that.”
“This can’t be real!” Izuku begins. “No...I’m dreaming...All Might’s the giant of a man who saves everyone. He defeats all obstacles and saves the day with a fearless smile!”
All Might lets out a sigh. “There’s plenty of fear behind that smile.” He says and sits down on the ground. “I’m counting on you to keep your mouth shut. Don’t go talking about this online or telling your friends.” Izuku stares in confusion but flinches back when the hero lifts up his shirt to reveal a nasty looking injury. It looks as if half of All Might’s stomach was sunken in, red and purple scarring left in its wake. “Pretty gross, right? I got this in a fight about five years back. My respiratory system was destroyed, I lost my whole stomach. All of the surgeries have pretty much worn me out, I can’t be fixed. Right now I can only do hero work for about three hours a day. Rest of the time, this is what I look like.”
“No way,” Izuku gasps. “Five years ago? So does that mean it was the fight with Toxic Chainsaw?”
“You really know your stuff kid, but no.” All Might makes a fist. “The punk may have landed some hits but he couldn’t bring me down. Most of the world has never heard of this fight. I did everything I could to keep it under wraps.”
‘A major fight five years ago..?’
“I’m supposed to be the guy that’s always smiling right? I’m the Symbol of Peace. People everywhere have to think that I’m never afraid. But honestly, I smile to hide the fear inside. It’s just a brave face I put on when the pressure is high. This job isn’t easy.” All Might stares directly at Izuku. “Pro heroes are always risking their lives. Some villains just can’t be beaten without powers. So can you be a hero? Not without a quirk.”
Izuku’s eyes widen and suddenly, everything sounds muffled. “I-I see…” He murmurs as All Might stands. If the hero says anything else, Izuku doesn’t catch it. ‘I can’t be a hero...can’t be a hero...can’t be..’ He doesn’t stop thinking of All Might’s words. He can’t stop thinking of All Might’s words. All Might’s words mean he can’t ever be useful to his father. Those words mean Izuku is nothing but a failure. Tears prick his eyes and he snaps out of his daze, furiously wiping at them. When he looks at the rooftop, he sees that All Might is no longer there.
Head hanging low, Izuku walks home. He’s silent as he tries to keep the tears at bay. ‘Don’t cry dammit.’ He’s still in shock. He didn’t expect his idol to tell him the one thing everyone had been telling him since he was a child. Maybe he was just trying to distract himself from reality. Maybe he has always known deep down that he was never going to become a hero. Izuku was destined to be a failure to his father forever. He lets out a sigh and looks up just in time to see people running and a crowd forming. “What’s going on?” He asks no one in particular as he runs in the same direction.
When he’s close enough to the crowd, he catches sight of flames. Curious now, Izuku tries to push through the crowd until he’s standing in the front. He sees what’s going on and his eyes widen. “That villain’s got someone trapped...” Someone mumbles. Izuku’s hands cover his mouth as he whimpers quietly.
A realization dawns on him. 'That’s the same villain as before! I thought All Might trapped him, how did he get away?!’ Izuku feels his entire body freeze as he realizes what could’ve happened. ‘The bottles he had him trapped in probably fell when I latched onto him! This is all my fault..!’ Feeling guilt and panic, Izuku frantically looks around for the heroes. Caught in the hold of the very villain that All Might saved him from, was his childhood friend, Kacchan. He sees the heroes around the area switching from trying to save Kacchan to focusing on damage control. Izuku knows they aren’t going to be able to do anything, not when they weren’t going to receive backup from the number one hero.
His eyes lock with Kacchan’s, and the rest is a blur.
After being chewed out by the heroes for putting himself into danger, Izuku heads home. As he’s walking home, Kacchan stops him and berates him for saving him. That was fine for Izuku. He didn’t need a ‘thank you’. If he had gotten one, it probably would’ve given him hope that he still had a chance to be a hero.
Izuku sighs quietly and he walks in the direction of his home. His father is probably wondering why he isn’t home yet. He better hurry up and get home soon. He hopes everything that just happened won’t be made into a big deal, but Izuku can’t be sure. He has a feeling that what he doesn’t want to happen will most definitely happen.
“I AM HERE!” A familiar voice shouts and suddenly All Might is in front of him.
Izuku shrieks in surprise. “A-All Might?! Where did you come from?!” He looks around. “How did you get rid of all those reporters?”
All Might laughs. “I stand for justice,” He says. “Not soundbites! Because I, I am All Mi-“ The hero is interrupted by a cough and some blood spills from his mouth, causing Izuku to yelp. All Might coughs a little bit longer and Izuku waits for him to collect himself. “Young man, I came here to thank you and to talk to you about your question from earlier.” Izuku blinks. His question? Oh, his question about being a hero. “If you hadn’t told me about your life, if you hadn’t run into that fight, I would’ve been a worthless bystander watching from the crowd. So thanks.”
Izuku is quick to argue. “Oh, no! It was my fault he was there to begin with! I got in the way of your work..” He looks to the side and grows quieter. “And...not to mention your time..”
“I’m not done,” All Might’s voice is gentle, which surprises Izuku. He thought that the hero would’ve been upset with him, but he wasn’t? “You told me that you didn’t have a power. So when I saw this timid quirkless boy try to save a life, it inspired me to act too.”
Izuku looks over at All Might, eyes beginning to widen. What did he mean by that? He inspired All Might to act? That couldn’t be right, he was Deku.
“There are stories about every hero, how they became great. Most have one thing in common, their bodies moved before they could think; almost on their own.” Izuku’s gasp was soft and barely hearable as he began to realize what All Might was saying. He wasn’t dreaming, was he? Tears prick his eyes and he tries to fight them back to no avail. All Might smiled a bit. “And today, that’s what happened to you.” Izuku couldn’t fight back his tears anymore.
“Young man, you too can become a hero.”
The dam breaks and Izuku cries, loud and full of joy.
"Lost and found, I had no home
Found myself when I gave up hope
-The World Alive, Branded"
It’s been two days since Izuku encountered All Might and was given a chance to become a hero. It’s early in the morning and Izuku is tired, he’s up even earlier than he normally is, but All Might had said to meet him at Dagoba Municipal Beach Park early in the morning. Izuku can hear the sound of waves crashing into water as he approaches the beach. He sees garbage scattered all over the place. Amongst the garbage is a large man, one who Izuku would be able to spot, even miles away. When All Might sees him arrive, the hero grins. “Good morning!” He greets and Izuku smiles at him. Part of him still can’t believe that All Might was going to train him! Even though his father didn’t think he had much potential, it was mind boggling to Izuku that the number one hero thought he did.
“Good morning, All Might.” He greets in reply. “So um, why did you want me to meet you at Dagoba?” Izuku asks, looking around at all of the trash.
All Might smiles. “This is where you’ll be training, my boy.”
“My training will be...here? At the beach?” Izuku asks, bewildered. “Why here?”
Laughing, All Might replies, “My quirk is a whole lot to handle. The combined physical of the previous user’s abilities creates a hurricane of pure force. An unprepared body can’t handle it, your arms would shoot off if you tried to.”
“Shoot off?!” Izuku shrieks, rubbing his arms. He shakes his head and looks around. “O-Okay...so this is kind of like a hardcore gym workout then.” He looks at All Might. “Which would make you my trainer…”
The hero nods in approval with a thumbs up. “You got it!” He exclaims. “But that’s not the only reason. I did some research yesterday and it turns out this part of the beach used to be beautiful, but it’s been a total mess for the last few years.” Izuku watches as All Might hits the edge of a fridge that had been dumped there. The fridge dents from his small punch and Izuku can’t hold back his amazement at the pure power the hero has.
“That’s right…” He murmurs and he takes a look at all of the trash once more. “Thanks to the ocean’s currents, anything that gets dropped into the water gets washed up here. Some people like to take advantage of that when their illegally dumping their trash. Now all of the locals avoid this place.”
Placing his hand on the top of the fridge, All Might continues. “Heroes these days are all about showing off and capturing flashy villains.” He begins pushing down on the fridge as he speaks. “Things were different before quirks. Service is what mattered. Back then, heroes were those who helped the community. Even if it was kind of boring.” By the end of All Might’s sentence, the fridge was crushed and a loud boom! goes through the air. Izuku stares in awe. “You’ll restore the coastline for this entire section of the beach. That’s the first step in your path young man to becoming a hero.”
Izuku blinks. “Um...all this? But...there’s so much! It’s impossible!” He exclaims. He thought his father’s training was hard, but All Might’s training seemed a lot tougher! While his father had him doing a hundred pushups and a hundred situps in the morning and before going to bed, All Might had him picking up trash that weighed way more than he did!
All Might walks over to Izuku asking, “Young Midoriya, you want to go to U.A. right?”
“Well yeah, of course...you went there, so it must be the best school around, right?” He looks down and clenches his fist with determination. “It’s a long shot, but still, I’m gonna prove myself…”
“You’ve got a lot of spirit, Fanboy!” All Might exclaims. Izuku’s cheeks heat up in embarrassment at the nickname. “But! As I mentioned before, being a hero isn’t as easy as wearing a jumpsuit with a cape, and running around when you don’t have a quirk.” All Might puts his hands on his hips. “It’s not fair, but that’s the reality, and U.A. is the hardest hero course to get into. So that means,”
“I have to prepare for your quirk really fast! U.A.’s exam is in ten months!” Izuku interrupts.
All Might turns around, pulling five papers from out of nowhere. “Not to worry kid, I’ve got you covered with the help of the handy Aim to Pass American Dream plan!” He exclaims. “Follow this to the letter and the beach will be cleaned up in no time! As long as you stick to this plan you should be able to clean up the beach within four months! Since you’re already in shape, there’s less work for us to do! Once the beach is cleaned we can spend the last six months working on your control of One for All!”
All Might hands the papers to Izuku. ‘Wow, he even detailed my sleep schedule!’ He observes as he skims through the papers. ‘How am I going to handle this and continue father’s training..?’
The hero leans close to Izuku, whispering in his ear, “To be honest, sticking to this plan is going to be difficult. Do you think you’re up to the challenge?"
“Of course I am! I have to work harder than anyone else to get into U.A.!” Izuku agrees, already beginning to think about how he was going to balance All Might’s training along with his father’s.
All Might grins and gives Izuku a thumbs up. “Then let’s get to work, Fanboy!”
Four months seem to pass within the blink of an eye. Izuku doesn’t have a hard time juggling training with All Might, his father, and his schooling. He thought it’d be harder to balance everything but it worked out just fine. Izuku’s only problem had been that he pushed himself too hard. Izuku knows quite well that he tends to push himself to the extreme. He does it too often not to know. However, he hadn’t realized how bad of a problem it could be until All Might scolded him.
Izuku had been jogging behind All Might as he walked across the trail. All Might was saying something that Izuku couldn’t really pay attention to. He was too focused on trying to stay upright. He wanted nothing more than to let himself fall on the pavement and take a six hour long nap, but he couldn’t. He had to keep going! Izuku tried to focus on his breathing, trying to get it to even out. He’d only been jogging for ten minutes, he shouldn’t be so winded yet! If he hadn’t been so focused on his breathing, he probably would’ve realized one of his shoes were untied, and if he had realized that? Well, he certainly wouldn’t have tripped.
All Might turned around the minute he heard a thud and he immediately went over to his student. “Young Midoriya! Are you alright?” He asked. He then crouched down by the boy and that’s when he noticed the slight bags under Izuku’s eyes. He also noticed how worn out the boy seemed, which made him frown. “My boy...you haven’t been following the plan, have you?” He didn’t get a response from Izuku. Sighing, he said, “Young Midoriya, I understand your will to become a hero, but pushing yourself too hard will have the exact opposite effect of what we want!”
Izuku pushed himself up with trembling arms. “I’m sorry All Might…” He apologized as he raised himself to look up at his mentor. “But I have to work way harder than anyone else if I want to stand a chance against the other applicants. I have to prove myself!” The pro hero stared at his student with surprise. He hadn’t expected the boy’s will to be so strong. He knew that Izuku wanted to be a hero, but he had no idea the boy was so willing to push himself so hard.
Letting out a sigh, All Might put a hand on Izuku’s shoulder. “I understand your concerns, Young Midoriya, but there’s no need to push yourself so hard when I am here! I’ll make sure that you can stand on equal ground with the other students!”
After that, All Might reworked the Aim to Pass American Dream Plan and this time, Izuku didn’t modify it at all. He followed it and eventually, the coastline of the beach was restored!
“Young Midoriya!” All Might exclaims, seeing the coastline clear. He approaches Izuku, who was covered in sweat from all the lifting he had been doing. The boy turns around and gives All Might a smile.
“I did it, All Might!” He says and the pro hero feels proud. He puts a hand on Izuku’s shoulder.
“You did!” He exclaims with a thumbs up. “The work you’ve done the past four months have really paid off! You’ve certainly molded yourself into the perfect vessel for One for All!” Izuku’s smile is blinding after All Might says that. He continues, “Now, it’s time to give you my quirk.” Izuku watches with awe, wondering how All Might will pass his quirk to him. The hero reaches up to his head and pulls out a strand of hair.
Izuku’s amazement quickly turns into disbelief. ‘Don’t tell me…’
All Might grins as he holds out the strand of hair for Izuku to take. “Eat this!”
Izuku stares at the strand of hair, deadpan.
Izuku lays in bed, staring up at the ceiling. Countless thoughts go through his head that prevent him from sleeping. He’s too excited to sleep anyways. Izuku holds out his arm, staring at his hand. He clenches it into a fist, hoping to feel the power of his quirk running through him. He doesn’t.
“Keep in mind, Young Midoriya, your body still has to digest! I’d say give it twenty four hours or so for One for All to appear. Come back here tomorrow and we’ll take a look!”
Izuku sighs, soft and quiet. Everything that’s happened over the past four months still surprises him. If someone had told him four months ago that his idol, All Might, would become his mentor and give him his quirk, Izuku would have thought that they were joking.
Smiling a bit, Izuku closes his eyes, excited for the next day to come.
The following day, Izuku ends up waking up earlier than expected. He checks the time and sees it’s currently six in the morning. He doesn’t need to be at Dagoba Beach until seven, so he decides to get some work done. Izuku changes into his running clothes but doesn’t leave to go for his morning run right away. Instead, he decides to grab his hero analysis book and add new information. He goes into his phone and almost immediately finds news on recent hero fights.
Izuku begins reading through the information he finds and jots down new observations and new theories in his notebook. He finds an article on Mt. Lady and Kamui Woods working together and updates their information in his book. He does this for half an hour and then, when he decides he’s found enough information, he goes out on his morning run. He puts his earbuds in and plays his music while he runs.
Looking down at his watch, Izuku sees it’s close to seven. He stops his run and takes a couple of breaths. After, he runs in the direction of Dagoba Beach.
When he arrives, he sees All Might there and he can’t help the smile that spreads across his face. He runs over to his mentor and greets him, “Good morning All Might!”
The pro hero turns around to look at him. “Good morning Young Midoriya! Ready to test out that power of yours?” He asks and Izuku can’t help his excited nod. “Excellent! Shall we begin?”
Izuku wasn’t sure what he was expecting when he first used One for All, but it certainly wasn’t the pain traveling up his arm. All Might had asked him to activate his quirk (which had taken a couple minutes since Izuku tried to figure out how exactly he would be able to call upon the power). After he activated the quirk, All Might wanted to test out its strength. So, like any normal mentor, All Might had Izuku punch a broken down fridge (in preparation for the day, All Might brought a couple of the bigger pieces of garbage back to the beach).
It was incredibly painful, to say the least. Izuku had never felt something like that before. Even the injuries from Kacchan had never hurt him so badly.
In the end, Izuku had broken his arm, and All Might was worrying over him. He ended up taking Izuku to see Recovery Girl at U.A. (Izuku almost fainted, when he saw his dream school and when he met Recovery Girl). The woman had scolded All Might for being so reckless with Midoriya and gave him a warning to be more careful. After being healed by Recovery Girl, Izuku was exhausted. He was trying to keep his eyes open as he and All Might made their way back to the beach. Halfway through the walk, All Might ended up giving Izuku a piggyback ride. Had Izuku been more aware of what was going on, he would have been as red as a tomato, and a stuttering mess.
Afterwards, All Might and Izuku sat down to plan how they would move forward. They had to be extremely careful with how much of One for All Izuku could use before he broke himself. All Might decided it’d be best if Izuku used the quirk in small percentages and worked up his power from there.
Getting control over One for All had been difficult and repeatedly breaking his bones more than once hadn’t helped either. All Might worked with him during the remaining months before the entrance exam to get at least some control over the powerful quirk. Eventually, the two discovered that Izuku was able to handle around five percent of the power. To know that he could handle a small amount of One for All, made Izuku incredibly happy.
Thus came the day that Izuku’s father learned he had a quirk.
Izuku waits for his father to finish his call with Shigaraki. His father has seemed stressed over the past few weeks and Izuku was worried about him. He hopes that now that he has a quirk, he can help his father. It doesn’t take long for the call to end and his father opens the door with a quiet sigh. He looks and sees Izuku standing there. “Izuku...did you need something?”
Izuku nods, rubbing his hands nervously. He was currently thinking of worst case scenarios in his head. Anything can go wrong with One for All since he barely knows about the quirk. What if this is the one time it doesn’t work? Or, what if he can’t control how much power he uses?
He snaps out of his thoughts and takes a breath. “There’s um...there’s something I need to show you, father.” Izuku turns around and leads his father to the training room. As he follows his son, his mind is elsewhere. He’s still thinking about his conversation with Shigaraki and the plans he may have to rearrange. He’d have to take some necessary precautions for what he was planning.
‘Maybe I should prepare a Nomu for Shigaraki…’
Once they enter, Izuku goes over to the wooden boards he set up beforehand. His father watches him with an eyebrow raised, saying nothing. Izuku takes a second breath and powers up One for All. He feels the power channel through his body until it reaches his arm.
The father watches Izuku with sudden interest. He feels a sudden pressure building up in the air. The force of the power feels...familiar.
‘Picture...the egg in the microwave...it won’t explode…’ Izuku focuses the energy into his fist and he punches the wooden boards, breaking them like they’re paper. After, he turns and looks at his father, waiting for his reaction.
“You...have a quirk…” His father says, a bit surprised. Izuku slowly nods. Slowly a smile begins to creep across his face. ‘Hmmm, maybe that Nomu wasn’t such a bad idea after all…’
Here are the first 3 chapters of the story! I’ll be posting 3 chapters a day! I hope you all enjoyed the first 3, and remember to check out the amazing artist who worked with me, https://obsucuria.tumblr.com/
"Is there hope? To hope like them?
Save me from the hell I'm in
-The World Alive, Branded"
Here's the next batch of chapters! I hope you guys enjoy these, and if you do let me know your thoughts!
As Izuku makes his way up the stairs of the U.A. building, he can’t believe this is his school for the next three years. The acceptance rate that year was one in three hundred. There was four students accepted based on recommendation and thirty six who got in thanks to the entrance exam, Izuku being one of them.
(When he first found out he was accepted he was crying for ten straight minutes. Afterwards he met All Might at Dagoba Beach and almost blew his cover. He then found out that the pro hero was going to be teaching at U.A. How exciting!)
Izuku runs through the halls of the school, trying to find his classroom. “Class 1-A...1-A…” He mutters, already feeling the butterflies in his stomach, this is his first experience at a real school after all. “Come on, where is it?” He stops as he approaches a door that has a sign in front of it with ‘1-A’ in bold print. On the door itself was a giant outline of ‘1-A’. Izuku stands in front of the door, eyes wide as he stares at it. “Man, this thing is huge! Are there giants here?”
Pushing the thought aside, Izuku straightens up. “The most promising students in the country are waiting behind this door.” He murmurs to himself. He suddenly imagines Kacchan and that scary boy from the entrance exam. “Maybe we’re in different classes! Maybe everyone here is super nice!” Just as he’s about to open the door, he hesitates. A conversation he had with his father comes to mind.
Things in the dining room were quiet as Izuku sat with his father. They ate dinner in silence. Izuku couldn’t keep his eyes focused on one thing, they darted around trying to look at anything but his father. There was an awkward tension in the air, as there usually was in moments like this. Things had been this way ever since Izuku was a child. He never understood why and he still didn’t. Is this how things normally were between father and son?
“Izuku, I’d like to talk to you about something.” His father said and Izuku’s eyes finally landed on him. “Now that you have a quirk, I think you should aim for U.A.’s hero course.”
“Really?!” Izuku exclaimed, pushing himself up from his chair with excitement. He had been worrying about telling his father he was going to apply to U.A. After all, his father was a villain and Izuku wasn’t sure if he was going to approve.
His father nodded, smiling at him. “Of course. It’s my greatest wish to see you accomplish your dreams after all.” Izuku couldn’t hide the smile forming on his face. “But...there’s a small favor I want you to do for me.”
“Anything!” Izuku exclaimed without thinking. He couldn’t believe his father was asking him to help him! He was finally being noticed! “What is it?”
“I want you to put those observation skills of yours to use and take notes on the quirks you come into contact with and tell me about them.”
Izuku ignores his thoughts for now. He isn’t stupid, he knows what his father wants him to do. He wants him to spy on his classmates. Even though he knows this, Izuku isn’t sure how to handle the situation just yet. Maybe he’ll have classmates that don’t have any quirks worth mentioning to his father. ‘Who am I kidding? This is U.A.! Of course everyone is going to have impressive quirks! Especially if there’s people like Kacchan here…’ Deciding to ignore his thoughts, he opens the door. He’s been standing outside the classroom long enough.
The moment Izuku opens the door, he hears a commotion from inside. “Take your feet off of that desk now!”
“It’s the first day and you’re already disrespecting school property by scuffing up the desks, you cretin!”
“You’re kidding me, right? Did your old school put a stick up your ass, or were you born with it?”
Izuku sweats as he sees who the two people arguing are. ‘Just my luck…’
The scary boy from the entrance exam goes quiet before placing a hand on his chest. “Let’s start over. I’m Tenya Iida, from Somei Private Academy.”
“Somei huh?! So you must think you’re better than me! I’m gonna have fun tearing you a new one!” Kacchan exclaims and Izuku can’t suppress the small shudder that goes through his body. He never saw Kacchan much after he was home schooled, so it was terrifying to think of being so close to him again.
Iida gasps in surprise. “You would threaten your own classmate?! Are you sure you’re in the right place?” Kacchan just huffs in response. His eyes then land on Izuku and Izuku’s body goes tense. Iida looks over in his direction as well. “It’s him,” He says and Izuku finds eighteen pairs of eyes looking over at him. His face turns a bit red in embarrassment and he grips the straps of his bag tightly in his hands.
“U-Um, hi!” He greets and Izuku immediately wants to smack himself. He wasn’t used to being the center of attention, even if it was for a split second.
“Good morning!” Iida exclaims, making a beeline for him. “My name is Tenya Iida-“
“Y-Yeah, I know.” Izuku interrupts and Iida goes quiet. ‘Maybe I shouldn’t have cut him off like that…’ “I’m Izuku Midoriya...it’s nice to meet you.” He says and he once more wants to slap himself for how his voice trembled with nervousness.
“Midoriya, you realized that there was something more to the practical exam, didn’t you? You must be very perceptive and I completely misjudged you. I admit, as a student you’re far superior to me.”
Izuku stares at Iida in surprise, sweat dropping. “Um...I find that hard to believe…” He says. After all, during the exam he had no idea what he was doing. He hadn’t been able to get any points for destroying the robots and most of his points were rescue points. All he had done really was save that girl from the zero pointer. He figured if he hadn’t jumped first, someone else would have.
“Hey I recognize that messed up hair!” Izuku turns around to see the girl he saved during the entrance exam. “Falling boy!” She exclaims and Izuku’s face goes a bit red. “You were awesome during the entrance exam, that punch was amazing!” She continues to exclaim, making punching motions with her fist.
“O-Oh, hi, I should probably be thanking you for going in and talking to- um,” He stumbles over his words. The girl, Ochako Uraraka, looks him at quizzically.
“Huh? How’d you know about that?” She asks.
“O-Oh! Um…” As Izuku tries to explain and not sound like a fool, he doesn’t see the way that a certain hothead is watching him.
Katsuki Bakugou watches as Deku tries to talk to some extra. He can’t wrap his head around why Deku of all people is at U.A. He doesn’t have a quirk for crying out loud! How could the best hero school accept a quirkless wannabe? Besides, Katsuki didn’t think Deku would be at U.A. since his crazy dad never let him go to regular school. Deku has been homeschooled all of his life! So why now? Katsuki clicks his tongue in annoyance. ‘I’m gonna ruin that nerd, right after I figure out how he got in.’
Uraraka seems oblivious to the very flustered Izuku as she talks to him. Izuku can’t help it, he isn’t used to speaking to someone for extended periods of time. After all, the only person he really speaks to is his father and even that’s short. Besides his father, there’s All Might and Kacchan, his idol and his bully. Izuku had started getting comfortable with speaking to All Might a couple weeks after his training began, and Izuku likes to limit how much he interacts with Kacchan. “What do you think we’re doing today besides orientation?” Uraraka asks. “I wonder what our teachers are like, I’m so excited to meet everybody!”
“If you’re just here to make friends then you can pack up your stuff now.” The (mostly one sided) conversation is broken up as Izuku notices a sleeping bag(?) laying in the doorway. Uraraka turns around to look. “Welcome to U.A.’s hero course.” Everyone watches as the bag is unzipped from the inside, revealing a disheveled man within. He pulls out a small smoothie packet and begins to drink from it. Izuku, Iida, and Uraraka watch in disbelief.
‘What is that thing?!’
The man then stands up, fully unzipping the sleeping bag. “It took eight seconds before you all shut up. That’s not gonna work,” He says. “Time is precious, rational students would understand that.”
Izuku stares at him. He looks familiar, but he can’t figure it out. ‘Who is this guy? If he’s here he must be some kind of pro...but he looks so worn out. What’s his deal?’
The man looks around the classroom. “Hello, I’m Shouta Aizawa, your teacher.”
‘Our teacher?!’ Izuku thinks.
Mr. Aizawa digs into his sleeping bag and pulls out clothing. Izuku blinks, staring at it. “Right, let's get to it. Put these on and head outside. You have ten minutes.”
Everyone watches as he walks away. A collective ‘huuuuh?!’ is shared by the class and Izuku’s pretty sure he’s the most confused.
‘Is this how normal schools operate?!’
Mr. Aizawa is waiting outside for everyone once they’re finished changing.
(The locker rooms had been quite embarrassing for Izuku to say the least. Since he had never gone to school before, the idea of changing in the same room as other boys was odd and slightly embarrassing to him because he wasn’t used to it. When the boys had first entered the locker room, Izuku looked around, mostly in confusion. “Where are we supposed to change?” He asked. Iida had been closest to him when he asked and looked at Izuku with bewilderment.
“By your locker, Midoriya.” He answered.
Izuku looked at him as if he had three heads. “J-Just out in the open?!” The boy exclaimed in surprise.
“Why do you sound so surprised? Surely you changed in the locker room at your old school, right?” Iida questioned, confused.
Izuku’s cheeks turned red in embarrassment as he noticed a few pairs of eyes on him and Iida. He nervously twiddled with his thumbs. “I was uh...homeschooled, so this is actually my first experience at a real school.”
“I’m sorry for assuming, Midoriya! Please excuse me!” Iida exclaimed rather loudly. A few more people looked over at them.
“A-Ah, it’s alright!”)
Izuku is not looking forward to going back to the locker room to change.
Anyways, everyone lines up as Aizawa looks at them all. “Today, we’ll be doing a quirk assessment.” He says.
“A quirk assessment?!”
“But what about orientation?” Uraraka questions.
“If you really wanna make the big leagues, you can’t waste time on pointless ceremonies. Here at U.A. we’re not tethered to normal traditions. I’m allowed to run this classroom however I see fit.” Izuku notices a few people around tense up. “You’ve been taking standardized tests most of your lives, but you never got to use your quirks in physical exams before. The country is still trying to pretend we’re all created equal by not letting those with the most power excel. It’s not rational. One day the ministry of education will learn.”
Aizawa’s eyes drift across everyone to make sure they were still paying attention. His eyes landed on one student in particular. “Bakugou, you managed to get the most points on the entrance exam. What was your farthest distance throw with a softball when you were in junior high?”
Bakugou looks up at the teacher. “Sixty-seven meters, I think.”
“Right, try doing it with your quirk.” Nodding, Bakugou stepped into the outlined circle that Aizawa had pointed to. “Anything goes, just stay in the circle.”
Izuku watches as Bakugou rolls his shoulder and fires up his quirk. ‘Kacchan’s quirk really has gotten stronger. It’s been awhile since I’ve seen it up close like this.’ The softball lands in the distance and the recorder in Aizawa’s hand goes off.
“All of you need to know your maximum capabilities. It’s the most rational way of determining your potential as a pro hero.” The teacher shows the class the number and Izuku stares, eyes wide.
“Whoa, seven hundred and five meters? Are you kidding me?” With that, everyone starts talking. Izuku looks around, watching everyone.
“This looks like fun! I wanna try!” One of the girls exclaims.
“So this looks fun? You have three years here to become a hero. You think it’s all gonna be games and playtime? Today, you’ll participate in eight physical tests to gauge your potential. Whoever comes in last has none and will be expelled immediately.
Izuku stares at his teacher in disbelief. ‘Immediate expulsion? Eight tests? Oh, crap, not good! I can’t afford to rank last!’
“Like I said, I get to decide how this class runs.” Izuku watches along with everyone else as Aizawa brushes some bangs out of his face. Without the hair in his face, Izuku can see how bloodshot his eyes are. “Understand? If that’s a problem, you can head home right now.”
Izuku’s actually doing better than he thought he would do. The first test had been the fifty meter dash. Izuku was careful about how he used One for All during the race. He didn’t use the full five percent, but powered enough of his quirk in his legs that would give him more speed. After the dash was a grip strength test. That one hadn’t been too hard. He was able to use the full five percent on that test and he placed quite high as well. The third test was the standing long jump and then the repeated side steps, and now there’s the ball throw.
Izuku goes after Uraraka, who had gotten infinity. He enters the circle and holds the softball in his hands. ‘ After this is the distance run, sit ups, and the seated toe touch.’ Izuku stares off a bit, thinking about his plan. Should he use more than five percent when he throws the ball? He’s been doing well so far and depending on the score he gets from this can only boost his place. With his decision made, Izuku fires up One for All in his arm and throws. He stares in surprise when he suddenly feels the power disappear and the ball drops to the ground.
“I erased your quirk.” Izuku looks over at Aizawa, eyes wide. “The judges for this exam were not rational enough. Someone like you should never be allowed to enroll at this school.”
‘Wait a second, I recognize those goggles! He’s the underground hero, Eraserhead!’
“You’re not ready. You don’t have enough control over your quirk. Are you planning on breaking your bones again, counting on someone else to carry you away? No matter what your intentions are, you’ll be a liability in battle.” Izuku stays silent, clenching his fists. He doesn’t say anything because on the one hand Aizawa is right, but on the other, he isn’t.
Aizawa doesn’t know how much Izuku’s gone through to control his power. All the teacher probably saw was his performance during the entrance exam and he was judging off of that. Well, Izuku will prove him wrong. He’ll prove that he can be depended on and not the other way around. When Aizawa sees that Izuku isn’t going to say anything, he sighs. “I’ve restored your impractical quirk. Take your final throw.” With that, he walks away.
Holding the ball once more, Izuku thinks of a strategy before throwing it again. If he can just concentrate his power in one particular spot, he won’t have to worry about breaking his arm. With a determined stare, Izuku pulls his arm back and swings. Just as the ball is about to leave his hand, he uses one of his fingers to propel the ball forwards using One for All. It hurts like hell, but he can still move.
After all of the tests are done, the students head back to the locker rooms and change (much to Izuku’s embarrassment. It’ll take him some time to get used to the locker room). In the end, no one got expelled. Aizawa had explained that it was a ‘logical ruse to get everyone to do their absolute best’.
The end of the day comes and Izuku walks out of the building hunched over. “I’m so tired…” He mumbles. “Who knew school could be so tiring?” Someone taps his shoulder and Izuku turns around, startled. “Ah, h-hey there Iida!” He exclaims.
“How’s the broken finger?” Iida questions.
Izuku relaxes and shows Iida the bandaged finger. “Oh, it’s doing fine thanks to Recovery Girl.” Iida nods and walks alongside him. ‘I have to stop relying on the help of others and learn how to control my power, even if it’s only at five percent.’
“I was a bit concerned by Mr. Aizawa’s approach to class, but I trust the school’s judgment. U.A. is the top program, even so, lying is downright immoral.”
‘I thought he was scary but that’s not it. He’s just really serious about school.’ Izuku thinks with a smile.
“Heyyy! Wait up you two! Are you going to the station? I’ll join you guys!” Uraraka calls out as she runs to catch up to Izuku and Iida.
“Oh, you’re the infinity girl.” Iida says.
Uraraka smiles. “I’m Ochako Uraraka.” She introduces. “Let’s see, you’re Tenya Iida, and you’re Deku, right? Midoriya?”
Izuku tenses as he exclaims, “D-Deku?!”
“Yeah, isn’t that what Bakugou called you?” She asks.
Izuku sweat drops. “W-Well, my name is actually Izuku. Kacchan calls me that to make fun of me.” He hurries to explain.
“That’s unsportsmanlike.” Iida notes, a hand on his chin.
Uraraka rubs the back of her head. “Oooh, I didn’t realize that, I’m sorry!” She apologizes. She then smiles. “But you know what, I like Deku. It would make a great hero name! It sounds like ‘you can do it!’, you know?”
Izuku goes quiet as he thinks. He never thought of his nickname that way. He smiles at her. “I like the sound of that. Deku it is then.” Uraraka smiles at him in response. With that, the three students begin their walk to the station.
“Oh, Midoriya, if there are any questions you may have about school, feel free to ask me.” Iida offers. “I hope today was a good first experience overall for you.”
“Ah, thank you Iida!”
Uraraka blinks, looking at them. “Good first experience?” She asks.
Izuku nods. “I’ve never actually been to a real school before. My father homeschooled me.” He explains and the conversation carried on from there. ‘I could get used to this,’ Izuku thinks. ‘Having real friends...but what should I do about father’s favor..?’
"There's nothing left but emptiness
When you realise what you could have been
-The World Alive, Dreamer"
Izuku has been in school for a week and he isn’t sure what to make of it. He’s been learning so many new things about what students do throughout the day. Although, he does find school to be quite weird. He still couldn’t get over the whole locker room thing. How can everyone get changed so easily around each other? Izuku can’t fathom the thought!
Another weird thing is the teachers. Izuku’s never been so close to so many pro heroes before, but he didn’t think all of them were so...whacky. One of the wackiest teachers was definitely Aizawa. The man always looked dead on his feet, it was almost worrying.
Besides how weird the teachers are, Izuku finds the concept of friends even weirder. Uraraka and Iida are very different than the friends he had had in the past. Although, maybe using Kacchan as a comparison isn’t the best idea.
Anyways, Izuku is already starting to grow fond of his friends. It’s slightly alarming. His father’s ‘favor’ rings in the back of his head constantly. He isn’t quite sure what to do about it until an idea strikes him. He decides to only tell his father about certain quirks. Ones like Ojiro’s tail and Hagakure’s invisibility. Kouda’s anivoice too. When his father asks about any other quirks his classmates had, Izuku decides to lie and tell him that there aren’t any others that are interesting. Thankfully, his father never appears to be skeptical.
Izuku loves U.A. though. In the morning he sits through English lessons by Present Mic and learns math from Ectoplasm. It’s amazing! He never thought he’d be learning from pro heroes!
The afternoon, however, is the most interesting. That’s when he gets hero lessons. So when the class sees All Might enter the classroom with a cry of, “I am here, coming through the door like a normal person!” Izuku feels a small bubble of excitement. Izuku hears how excited everyone is as they cheer. “For today’s activity, we’ll be doing battle training!”
‘Battle training?’ Izuku thinks as he stares at his mentor.
“And for that you need these!” All Might exclaims. The class looks around in confusion as cabinets pop out from the walls. “In accordance with the ‘quirk registry’ and the special request forms you filled out before being admitted…” He trails off and the class basically explodes.
“Hell yeah! Costumes!” They cheer. Izuku can’t help but nervously hug his backpack to his chest.
“After you change, come out in ranking order to ground beta!” Izuku stands from his seat and follows everyone to their costumes. He looks for his number and his heart flutters in his chest when he sees it. He grabs the case and follows the boys to the locker room. He makes sure to change as quickly as possible and then he follows everyone out.
“Looking good is very important ladies and gentlemen! Look alive now, because from today on, you’re all heroes!” All Might exclaims when they enter ground beta. Izuku looks around at everyone’s costumes with awe. Uraraka and Iida approach him.
“Whoa! Your costume is so cool Deku!” The girl exclaims. Izuku tugs on his gloves a bit with a small smile.
Iida hurriedly nods in agreement. “Yes! It’s quite eye catching!” He compliments as his hand makes chopping motions. Izuku chuckles a bit. The costume he was wearing was a design he thought of when he was younger. The original idea was supposed to be a homage to All Might, which is why it has two “bangs” attached to his mask, and why his mouth guard looks like a smile. However, before submitting his costume outline, Izuku altered it.
In the original design, he had two white strips of fabrics on his sides and his arms. Now, the color was black. He also had knee pads, but now those pads covered his legs and stopped at his thighs. Lastly, his mask attaches to his mouth guard now. His gloves also has a different design to them: two blue stripes wrap around the end of them.
“Your costumes are cool too!” Izuku exclaims.
Uraraka laughs a bit, rubbing the back of her head. “I should’ve been more specific on my request form...my costume is kind of embarrassing..” She admits.
“It fits your aesthetic pretty well, Uraraka! The astronaut look suits you!” Izuku says, reassuringly. Uraraka smiles at him as Iida agrees. “And Iida, you look so cool! Like a knight!”
“Thank you, Midoriya!”
“Everyone! Here’s today’s training exercise: indoor anti-personnel battle training!” All Might exclaims, catching everyone’s attention. “Villain battles are most commonly seen outdoors, but statistically the most heinous villains are more likely to appear indoors. You’ll be split into villain teams and hero teams, and you’ll be facing off in two-on-two indoor battles!”
“So no basic training?” Asui questions.
“Ah—” All Might pauses, “Practical experience teaches you the basics!” He explains. “The distinction here is that you won’t be fighting disposable robots.” The minute he finishes talking, everyone begins asking questions, speaking over each other. Izuku can’t help but feel bad. He watches as All Might answers their questions and finishes explaining the training.
For the exercise, the villains will be guarding a fake bomb in one of the buildings. Both teams will be given capture tape to immobilize their opponent. The heroes win if they wrap the villains in capture tape, or touch the bomb before time is up.
All Might has everyone draw lots to decide who their partners will be. Everyone goes one at a time and Izuku ends up getting paired with Uraraka.
“Oh, nice! I can’t wait to work with you, Deku!” The girl exclaims. Izuku manages a smile, her cheerfulness a bit overwhelming.
“Up first are...the hero team A, and the villain team D!” All Might exclaims and Izuku’s eyes go wide. He and Uraraka are team A. That means he’s up against Kacchan. “The villain team goes in first! The timer starts in five minutes, when the hero team sneaks in. The rest of us will watch via cctv!” With that, the training begins.
Izuku and Uraraka stand outside the building and work on a strategy. “The building blueprints…” Uraraka says, holding them. “We better memorize these.” Izuku nods in agreement. “Any ideas yet Deku?” She asks, looking over at him.
He shakes his head. “Uraraka, can you tell me more about your quirk? It might help me come up with something.” The boy inquires.
“Sure.” Uraraka agrees. “Whatever I touch with the pads on my fingers causes it to float. It’ll float until I release it, but if I float too many things at once I get super sick.”
Izuku hums, “Knowing Kacchan he’ll probably target me first, which’ll give you an opening to sneak past him an get to Iida and the weapon.”
Ochako watches as he mumbles plans under his breath. Is he not nervous? Even though there’s no punishment for failing like there was with Aizawa, Ochako is still a bit nervous. From what she knows about Deku, he seems like a walking ball of anxiety, but he doesn’t seem a bit anxious right now. He seems...confident, so confident that it’s as if a whole different person is standing beside her.
“I got it!” Deku turns to Ochako with a small smile.
She can’t help but smile back. “What’s the plan Deku?”
Izuku and Uraraka are quiet as they walk through the hallways of the building. There’s a lot of blind corners, so they have to watch out. Izuku’s not sure where Kacchan will come from to attack. Uraraka looks around the halls as they walk, following Izuku’s lead. The boy is almost shocked by how much the girl already trusts him. ‘Even though I have a good grasp on One for All, I have to be careful. I’ve never really used it against anyone except All Might and father before. All we’ve got is my natural strength and Uraraka’s zero gravity. That should be good enough to win…’
Izuku knows how Kacchan is. That’s why he’s keeping such a close eye on the whole space as he’s mentally referring back to his notes on indoor scenarios. Suddenly, Kacchan leaps in front of them, startling the two. Kacchan uses his right arm to punch Izuku as he fires off an explosion. Izuku pushes Uraraka down and out of the way of the blast. “Are you alright, Uraraka?!” He exclaims.
“Yeah, thanks! He came out of nowhere!” The girl replies.
Kacchan’s form comes out of the smoke and Izuku pushes himself up, standing in front of Uraraka almost protectively. “Nice dodging, Deku.” Kacchan practically growls.
“I had a feeling that you’d come right for me.” Izuku says, frowning.
Kacchan has a crazed gleam in his eye as he throws his arm back, exclaiming, “I’ll mess you up just enough not to be disqualified!”
Izuku smirks a bit, already knowing what’s coming. Just as Kacchan thrusts his arm out to attack, Izuku latches onto it and flips him over his shoulder. He hears Kacchan groan as he lands on the ground. “If your move wasn’t as obvious as it was, you probably would’ve landed that hit. But I know enough about you to know you almost always lead with that right hook.” Kacchan pushes himself up to turn and glare at Izuku. The boy isn’t fazed by it, and that surprises Kacchan. “I’m not going to be your punching bag anymore! I’ve learned how to fight back and I’m going to take you down!”
Kacchan growls in frustration. “What the fuck are you spouting from that mouth of yours, Deku?! You’re pissing me the hell off!”
Izuku holds his fists up to fight, face set in determination. “The meaning of that name of yours...it’s changed. I’m not some loser that’s worthless to you anymore. Deku is the name of a hero who never gives up!” Izuku’s back is to Uraraka, so he misses the way her eyes widen at his exclamation.
Kacchan growls again and suddenly goes quiet for a few seconds. “Shut up and keep watch! I’m ready to wreck someone!” He exclaims and Izuku guesses he’s talking with Iida. He blinks and Kacchan is using his explosions to push himself up into the air.
“Uraraka! Go on ahead of me!” Izuku exclaims as Kacchan kicks him.
“Worry about yourself!” Kacchan shouts as the girl runs off.
“Don’t worry,” Izuku looks up at him and that’s when Kacchan sees it, the white capture tape around his knee, “I am.” Izuku uses the tape to fling Kacchan a few inches away from him. It doesn’t do much, but at least it gives Izuku room to breathe. ‘If I know Kacchan, he’ll probably rage and try to attack me again…’ Just as he predicts, Kacchan uses his right hook to try and explode Izuku. The boy ducks out of the way. He lands in a crouched position, mind scrambling for a plan. ‘Right now I have no plan to beat just Kacchan. I gotta come up with a strategy!’ Izuku takes off, running behind a corner.
“Get back here, Deku!” Kacchan calls as Izuku runs for cover. “It must’ve been fun, huh?! Tricking me into believing you were some weakling! Right?! You’ve been hiding that flashy quirk for years, haven’t you?!” Izuku hears the crackle of Kacchan’s explosions. “Bring it on, nerd! I’ll still crush you!”
Ignoring Kacchan for now, Izuku crouches beside a corner. ‘He came straight for me, ignoring Uraraka entirely. Just like I guessed, Iida is probably guarding the weapon...which means there’s probably no teamwork between them at all. This is just Kacchan rampaging all on his own then. If both of them had come for us then we probably wouldn’t have had any chances of winning. If I hadn’t sent Uraraka ahead we would have wasted too much time.’ Izuku wipes some sweat from his cheek. ‘This is good then! As long as Uraraka can go after the weapon and capture Iida, I’ll finish things up here and join up with her and take out Iida!’
Izuku’s communicator crackles as he hears Uraraka speak. “Deku!”
“Uraraka, what is it?”
“Iida found me, I’m sorry!”
“It’s alright! This could still work! Keep him distracted, okay? I’ll be up to you soon!”
“Okay! I trust you, Deku!”
Izuku stands up, a small warm feeling budding in his chest. He can’t let Uraraka down, she was counting on him! ‘I need a plan! Think! What would father do?!’
There’s footsteps from the other end of the hallway. Izuku turns and sees Kacchan standing there. “I’m loaded up.” He says, holding up his gauntlet. “Why don’t you use your quirk?” He asks when he spots Izuku taking out the capture tape. “You mocking me, Deku?”
‘It’s now or never!’ Izuku thinks as he narrows his eyes. “Mocking you? You must be crazy, Kacchan. I’ve been looking up to you for years. You’ve been the one mocking me.”
Kacchan growls at him and thrusts out his arm. “I’m guessing you know this from your stalking but the sweat glands on my palms secrete something like nitroglycerin. That’s how I make my explosions.” His hand moves to the pin on his gauntlet. “Assuming they honored my design requests, this gauntlet’s been storing that sweat…”
“Young Bakugou, stop! Are you trying to kill him?!” All Might exclaims through the earpieces.
“He won’t die if he dodges!” The hothead shouts, yanking the pin.
Izuku’s blinded by the bright light from the explosion and can only hear the loud bang as he gets pushed back. Smoke fills his vision as he lands on the ground, wincing. Eventually the smoke clears and Kacchan is looking down at his gauntlets in awe. “They gave someone like you something like that?!” Izuku shouts once he can talk.
“I wanna crush you, nerd. Use your quirk!” He demands as Izuku pushes himself up.
‘An explosion he can direct forward...I guess he wanted a way to attack at range!’ Izuku pants as he pushes himself up. “Uraraka, how’s it going on your end?” He asks.
“I’m not sure how much longer I can distract Iida, Deku! He got rid of all the debris so I can’t float anything!”
Izuku frowns. “Just stay calm! Stick to what you know, trust yourself!”
Kacchan scoffs. “You ignoring me?” He asks, ignoring All Might’s scolding. “It’s time to beat you!” He exclaims, using his explosions to soar into the air. He aims straight for Izuku and Izuku clenches a fist, powering up One for All. At the last second, Kacchan’s above him and then behind him, firing an explosion at his back. Izuku is pushed forward a bit but not much. He channels One for All to his leg and twists his body to kick Kacchan away. His attack lands and he’s able to kick out one of Kacchan’s legs from beneath him.
Kacchan’s balance however, is nearly perfect and he uses his right hand to knock his gauntlet into Izuku’s side. Izuku yelps in pain, using some of One for All to get away from Kacchan. “I wonder, Deku, how long were you laughing behind my back?! Did you enjoy looking down on me?! Did you think I’d never find out you were hiding your quirk from me?!” Kacchan shouts and Izuku can hear the hurt in his voice.
Oh no. No, he didn’t have the right to be hurt. Izuku clenches his fist and runs forward, punching Kacchan right in the face. “Are you blind or just stupid!?” He shouts, anger written all over his face. “Never once have I lied to you, Kacchan! Ever since we were kids, I’ve looked up to you, but you never deserved it!” Using One for All, Izuku lands another hit as he dodges a right hook from Kacchan. “You kicked me down and made me feel worthless! Even if I was hiding this quirk, you have no right to feel betrayed! You’re just a self entered, arrogant jerk, who can’t accept that I’m your equal!”
Bakugou’s face falls as he freezes. He begins to shake as he clenches his fists in anger. “WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT YOU QUIRKLESS WANNABE?!” His hand moves towards his unused gauntlet and Izuku pulls out the capture tape. Bakugou was so blinded by his rage that he leaves an opening, and Izuku sees it. As Bakugou goes to pull the pin, Izuku boosts himself with his quirk and is able to wrap the capture tape around Bakugou’s midsection, missing the blast that rips through the wall of the building. Bakugou is pushed to the ground by Izuku, capture tape tightly wound around him.
All that can be heard is the heavy breathing of the two. Izuku is standing above Bakugou, trying to catch his breath. “It’s...over...I beat you…” Bakugou’s eyes widen. Izuku moves so that he starts walking away, ready to go help Uraraka. He stops walking to turn back and look at his once childhood friend. “I was always amazed by you, Bakugou. That’s why I wanted to beat you...to prove to myself and to everyone else...that I can do this.” With that, he walks away, leaving not only his childhood friend, but their shared history behind.
“Can't believe that this is our reality
How far we came, now hate is all we see
-The World Alive, Lost in the Dark"
After he beat Bakugou, Izuku went to help Uraraka take care of Iida. Their fight had been a bit sloppy with both Izuku and Uraraka being tripped repeatedly by Iida, and Izuku face planting when trying to land a hit on the boy. He was incredibly fast, Izuku would give him that. With just a few seconds to spare, Izuku managed to distract Iida long enough for Uraraka to come up with a plan and wrap him in capture tape. To say the least, Izuku and Uraraka were incredibly happy with how well they did. Izuku could tell All Might was proud of him too, which made his heart clench for some reason.
Once their battle was done, Izuku was able to watch his classmates, and he was amazed by them, to say the least. They definitely had quirks that his father would love to know about, but Izuku couldn’t tell his father about them. He still hasn’t worked out why his father needs information on everyone’s quirks, but a part of Izuku told him to hold some information back. So he did.
At the end of the school day, Izuku walked to the train station with Iida and Uraraka. He saw Bakugou walking alone, hands stuffed into his pockets, and back hunched over. He looked defeated. Izuku ignored him. He said his piece, and now it was up to Bakugou to do whatever he wanted to do next.
The next few days were uneventful, save for the day the media broke into the school. Earlier in the day, Aizawa had told them to pick a class representative and Izuku won the election somehow. Full of nerves and anxiety, he stood beside Yaoyorozu and said a few words. After, they went to lunch. That’s when the chaos broke out. A blaring alarm rang throughout the cafeteria and the students were told to evacuate. With everyone panicking, no one realized it was just the press, who were no real threat. Iida, thankfully, had taken notice of who the intruders were and was able to calm everyone down.
When they got back to class, Izuku decided to give his position to Iida. The boy seemed much more fitting for the role than he did. Izuku had a feeling Iida would take his job very seriously.
Letting out a quiet sigh, Izuku stares out the window as the scenery rolls by. For the class’s hero training today, they were doing rescue training, so they were going on a bit of a field trip. Izuku isn’t sure how it happened, but he was seated next to Todoroki. The other boy was quiet, saying nothing, even when he noticed who was next to him. Izuku had given him a timid wave before turning his attention to the window.
From where he’s sitting, he hears Iida stressing over how the bus’s seats messed up his seating chart. Izuku also hears Kaminari and Asui poking fun at Bakugou, and Izuku was surprised at how the explosive teen hadn’t blown their heads off just yet.
“I never got a chance to tell you, Midoriya, but your quirk is amazing!” Kirishima exclaims, snapping Izuku’s attention from the window over to the boy.
“H-Huh?” Izuku stammers. “M-My quirk isn’t that great, Kirishima!” He quickly rebuts, wavering his arms.
“Come on man! You can do a lot of great stuff with it! It’s super flashy too!” Kirishima argues. He hardens the skin on his arms as he slams his knuckles together. “I’d love to have a quirk like that. Mine is kinda boring and simple.”
Izuku shakes his head wildly, the timid air around him gone, replaced by confidence. “Your quirk is definitely pro level, and even though all you can do is harden your skin, I’m sure there’s a lot of different ways you can apply your abilities to situations you may find yourself in!” He explains with a smile.
“If we’re gonna talk pro level, I’m sure Todoroki and Bakugou are already one step ahead of all of us.” Kaminari comments. Izuku is the only one to take notice of Todoroki tensing up at the mention of his name. “Though, Bakugou probably has to work on an attitude adjustment if he wants to stand a chance as a pro.” Kaminari quips with a sly smile.
“WHAT WAS THAT PIKACHU?!”
Izuku winces as Bakugou starts yelling. Before he can carry on for too long, the bus pulls to a stop and Aizawa is telling everyone to get off of the bus. When they enter the building, Izuku immediately takes notice of the different areas. There’s a large forest, a shipwreck, large rocks piled together that look like a mountain, and even an area with fire.
“Welcome to the USJ!” A voice exclaims. Izuku and his class look over to the source and they see a space suit. Izuku recognizes them as the Space Hero Thirteen. He holds back his outburst once he recognizes them but there’s a smile of excitement on his face. He hears a cheer beside him and sees Uraraka barely able to contain her own outburst. It seems like she’s a fan of theirs as well.
Aizawa walks over to Thirteen, looking around. “Where’s All Might?” He asks. “I thought he was meeting us here.” Izuku’s eyes drift over to the two, hearing a bit of their conversation.
“It seems he just about reached his limit during his way to the school.” Thirteen replies, holding up three fingers. Izuku immediately knows what that means.
“This is so cool, right Deku?!” Uraraka exclaims, pulling Izuku’s attention away from Aizawa and Thirteen.
“Yeah.” He agrees as Aizawa turns his attention back to them. “Let’s get started then.” He says.
“Before we do, I have one or two points. ..or three...maybe four….okay I have a lot of points.” They ramble. “As I’m sure many of you are aware...my quirk is called Black Hole. It can suck in and tear apart anything.”
“And you’ve used it to save people in all sorts of disasters.” Izuku says before he can stop himself.
Thirteen nods. “Right...however my power could easily kill. I’ve no doubt there are some among you with similar abilities. In our super-powered society, the use of quirks is heavily restricted and monitored. It may seem that this system is a stable one, but we must never forget that it only takes one wrong move with an uncontrollable quirk for people to die. During Aizawa’s physical fitness test...you came to learn of your own hidden potential. Through All Might’s battle training you experienced the danger that your respective quirks can pose to others. This class will show you a new perspective! You will learn how to utilize your quirks to save lives. Your powers are not meant to inflict harm. I hope you leave here today with the understanding that you’re meant to help people.” Thirteen bows. “That is all! Thank you for listening!”
Izuku hears his classmates cheer around him and he can’t help but smile. Thirteen was inspiring, that was for sure. “Great.” Aizawa says, making everyone look over at him. “First off…” He trails off, pointing somewhere. He stops talking when the lights flicker slightly and there’s a sound of an electrical current from above them.
“Kaminari, that wasn’t you, right?” Jirou asks.
“No way!” Kaminari denies quickly. Izuku looks around and sees a portal opening above the central plaza of the USJ. His eyes widen as he realizes who’s portal that is.
‘What is Kurogiri doing here? Why is he opening a portal?’ He thinks as Aizawa shouts something to Thirteen. He sees his teacher putting on his goggles and turning to run just as Shigaraki’s head pops out of the portal, along with other villains. Izuku stares, confused. Why was Shigaraki here at U.A.? He doesn’t have much time to think about any possible answers, for Kurogiri appears in front of Izuku and his class.
“Thirteen and Eraserhead is it? According to the information I received the other day, All Might is supposed to be here…” Izuku feels dread in the pool of his stomach. He was the reason Kurogiri knew that. He had informed his father about the trip to the USJ they were taking. He was excited to get more training and couldn't stop talking about it when his father asked him more questions. This was happening all because of him, wasn’t it?
Aizawa mutters something under his breath as he runs into the fray, pulling at his bandages. Izuku’s classmates huddle together, but he’s too involved in his head to pay attention to what they were saying.
“Isn’t there intruder sensors?!” Yaoyorozu exclaims.
“Yes, of course there are!” Thirteen replies.
“Are they only here, or are they at the main building as well? Either way if the sensors aren’t working, it has to be thanks to one of their quirks…” Todoroki mumbles, staring at the villains pouring in. “This place is far from the campus, and they picked a time when there’d be fewer people here. So maybe they’re not as dumb as they seem. They must have an objective, because this is a well-coordinated sneak attack.”
“Todoroki, this is no time to evaluate the enemy! Follow after Thirteen and evacuate!” Iida calls, and everyone begins following their teacher. Kurogiri moves to block their path.
“I won’t allow that.” He says. “Greetings. We are the League of Villains. Forgive our audacity but today we’ve come here to U.A. High School to end the life of All Might, the Symbol of Peace.” Izuku’s eyes widen in horror. “We were under the impression that All Might would be here today but...it seems his schedule was revised?” Kurogiri sighs. “Well, no matter. My role remains unchanged.” The blast mist coming from his body surrounds them and Izuku has a bad feeling about what was about to happen. Before anything can happen though, Kirishima and Bakugou leap in of Kurogiri. Bakugou powers up an explosion as Kirishima hardens his fist and punches at him.
“Betcha didn’t see that coming!” Kirishima exclaims.
“That was close, yes. Students though you may be, you are certainly the best of the best.” Kurogiri replies, truly caught off guard.
“No, both of you, get back!” Thirteen exclaims. Kurogiri’s mist traps them in a hemisphere of black.
“Guys!” Izuku shouts as a portal opens beneath him. He yelps as he falls through the portal. When he lands, he lands on dirt. Izuku quickly pushes himself up, looking around at where he was.
“It looks like a landslide…” He murmurs, standing up. From the corner of his eye he sees movement and dodges in time to avoid a punch. Powering up One for All, Izuku punches the villain that was there, knocking them out. That’s when Izuku sees a group of villains and realizes the strategy that Kurogiri (and probably Shigaraki) had. “Divide and conquer…”He murmurs, putting a hand on his chin.Taking Izuku’s moment of distraction as an opening to attack, a few villains jump out of hiding and leap for Izuku.
Before Izuku can move out of the way, the villains jump into a wall of ice. Izuku yelps as he jumps back in surprise. He turns and sees Todoroki is the one responsible for the wall of ice that appeared. “Todoroki!” He exclaims, glad that he isn’t alone in the zone they were in.
“Midoriya.” The other boy says, nodding. He walks over to him, keeping a watchful eye on their surroundings. “You should be more careful during situations like this. It could be dangerous.” He says.
“Right.” Izuku agrees. He thinks back to what Kurogiri said before. They were there to kill All Might? Why? Why now of all times? Izuku’s head is all over the place, he can’t think straight. All he can think about is how this is all happening because of him. What can he do to fix this mess?
“Midoriya, the villains are breaking through my ice. Back away from it.” Todoroki commands. Izuku numbly nods and backs away. He’s just in time too, for the villains break through as soon as he backs away. Todoroki slams his right foot down, freezing the villains. “This terrain is perfect for my ice...it’s as if that mist guy just randomly dropped us without knowing about our quirks."
A light bulb goes off in Izuku’s mind. That’s right. He didn’t tell his father about all of his classmates quirks. He had no idea about Todoroki or Bakugou, or Iida, or Uraraka’s quirks when planning this attack. Izuku’s class could still turn things around. “Todoroki, that’s it!” Izuku exclaims. “They don’t know about our quirks!”
“What does that have to do with anything?” Todoroki asks.
“Their strategy was to scatter us! If we want to get out of this zone, we have to figure out a strategy to stop them.” Izuku says. Todoroki opens his mouth to refute but Izuku stops him before he can say anything. “You can’t use your ice to overwhelm them forever. We could be on a time limit and you’ll probably freeze your body before we even finish with these guys.” He says.
“I guess you have a point.” He mumbles. “What’s the plan then?” Todoroki asks him. Izuku takes a few minutes to think.
“How fast can you produce ice?” He asks. Todoroki blinks, thrown off by the question.
“I can do it in a few seconds, why?” The boy questions.
“If you can create enough ice to slide us out of this zone, I’ll use my quirk to give us a speed boost. It might not be much, but it should work.” Izuku explains. Todoroki is quiet, thinking through the plan. Eventually, he nods in agreement.
“Let’s do it.” He agrees. Izuku nods in response and goes to stand behind Todoroki. He begins to power up One for All in his legs.
“On the count of three…” Izuku says, watching as the villains begin to unfreeze. He feels the air around them begin to chill and looks down at the ground, where ice is forming around Todoroki’s feet.” One…” He says, seeing more of the villain begin to unfreeze. “Two…” The now, unstuck villains begin to charge for them. “Three!” He exclaims and pushes Todoroki. The ice beneath their feet gives them more momentum and they’re pushing through the crowd of villains quite quickly. Izuku ignores the cries of surprise around them, and focuses on pushing Todoroki. He sees the end of the landslide zone in front of them and feels a small bit of relief fill him. They were close to escape.
They were suddenly pushed apart by a villain, interrupting their path. Both Izuku and Todoroki grunted as they fell. “Haha, you kids are smart.” The villain says. “Too bad I was here to interrupt you, maybe you would’ve been able escape unharmed.” He chuckles.”But you two were very unlucky to have run int-” The villain is cut off as Todokri freezes him up to his neck. He stands up, walking over to the now frozen villain, looking at him with unmoving eyes.
“Forgive me for saying so, but it’s hard to see you as anymore than a thug with a quirk you can’t handle.” Todoroki stares at him, sighing. Since his breath was so cold, Izuku actually saw it. How much ice had the boy already used?
“Bastard! Are you really just a kid?! Ow ow ow! ” The villains cries out. Todoroki just scoffs.
“You’re an adult for god sake. Act like it.” He mumbles. “At this rate, your skin will probably rot away from frostbite. But I’m trying to become a hero, and hero’s don’t do such horrible things.” He leans down toward the villain, eyes steely and cold. Izuku watches the entire scene in awe. “What makes you think you can kill All Might?” He asks and Izuku feels that fear again. There was a chance that All Might could have died today. The very thought of it terrified Izuku. Logicallt, he knew the chance of All Might dying was very improbable, but he knew that the here wasn’t a god. He was just as human as everyone else. He wasn’t indestructible, no matter how much Izuku wanted to think he was. His thoughts fall silent as he listens to the villain speaking with Todoroki about how the League planned to kill All Might.
When Izuku and Todoroki arrive at the central plaza, All Might is there, being held in the air by two clawed hands digging into his sides. It seems they get there just as Bakugou and Kirishima do. Bakugou fires off an explosion, hitting Kurogiri. Todoroki slams his foot down and freezes the large black body half in the portal. Bakugou is holding down Kurogiri by the metal around his neck, which cuts off the portal the body was trapped in.
“You’re not all that, you misty bastard!” Bakugou growls, glaring down at Kurogiri.
“Scum like you could never kill the Symbol of Peace.” Todoroki mumbles, steely eyes staring down the villains in front of them. All Might takes the opportunity to leap away from the thing holding him, and Izuku finally gets a good look at it. It’s face is somewhat bird like, it’s brain exposed. Izuku also catches sight of Shigaraki standing there. He can’t help but feel mixed emotions seeing him there.
“You’ve pinned down our way out...well, this is a problem…” Shigaraki mumbles.
“You slipped up, you bastard!” Bakugou exclaims. “And it’s just like I thought! The parts you can turn into that foggy warp gate are limited, and you’re using that misty crap to hide your real body, yeah?! Am I right?” He’s met with silence. “If your whole body was mist and physical attacks didn’t work...you’d never say ‘that was close!’” Kurogiri tries to move, but Bakugou stops him.
“Not only have you beaten our level, but you’re at full health...today’s kids really are something! Our League of Villains should be ashamed!” Izuku feels himself tense up as Shigaraki’s eyes drift over to him. He then looks back at the bird thing on the ground. “Nomu, take out the explosive brat. We need our escape route back.” Shigaraki commands and the nomu gets up.
“His body’s falling apart, but he’s still moving?!” Izuku exclaims.
“Get back everyone!” All Might throws his arm out. “What the...I thought his quirk was shock absorption!”
“I don’t remember saying that’s all he can do. This is hyper-regeneration. Nomu is a superpowered living sandbag, designed to withstand everything you’ve got.” The nomu suddenly propels himself toward All Might, punching him backwards. The nomu then charges for Bakugou and Izuku’s moving before he can think about it. He’s standing in front of Bakugou, pulling his arm back and punching as hard as he can. He bites back a cry of pain when he feels his arm breaking from the pure power his punch held. The nomu is unphased and the two boys are pushed out of the way just in time. Izuku blinks and looks around, seeing himself beside Todoroki.
“What the?!” Izuku exclaims and looks over to where he had just been standing. All Might was in both his and Bakugou’s place. Izuku’s eyes widen. All Might had taken the hit for the both of them.
“Anything to save a comrade, huh?” Shigaraki mutters. “Violence in the name of saving others is admirable, isn’t it hero? You know what, All Might? That pisses me off! Heroes and villains both thrive on violence, but we’re still categorized. ‘You’re good’ ‘you’re evil’. That’s how it is!” Shigaraki’s arms spread out as he speaks. “Symbol of Peace? Hah! In the end you’re just a tool for violence, made to keep us down! Violence only breeds more violence. I’ll show the world that by killing you!”
“What an idealist you are. Idealistic criminals have a different sort of fire in their eyes, and yours? Yours don’t have that fire. You’re just enjoying yourself, you big liar.” All Might says, frowning.
“You saw right through me…” Shigaraki chuckles dryly. “Let’s clear the game and go home!” He exclaims and lunges for Izuku and the others.
“He’s coming, get ready guys!” Kirishima exclaims, and Izuku briefly wonders if Shigaraki would actually kill him. Shigaraki stops running though when he sees All Might and the nomu fighting.
“A head-on assault?!” Izuku exclaims, watching as All Might’s fists are met with the nomu’s. The amount of force between the two is incredible. It’s creating wind so fierce that it’s blowing Izuku’s curls all over the place. While fighting with the nomu, Izuku sees All Might spitting up blood. ‘He’s at full power! He’s throwing it all out there! Every hit is the real deal! Over a hundred percent of his power!’
Just like Izuku, Todoroki, Bakugou, and Kirishima are watching as All Might uses so much of his power that he ends up sending the nomu into the sky, breaking the ceiling of the USJ.
The smoke clears up while everyone is staring in shock. Izuku looks over at his mentor, eyes wide. “Well, villain, how about we finish this up?” He asks.
Shigaraki growls. “He’s not weak at all! They...they lied to me?!”
Izuku has a feeling he knows exactly who ‘they’ are. The only question is why his father thought that All Might was weaker. He hadn’t told his father who he got his quirk from, hadn’t even told him the quirk’s name. So why?
“If you can take me on, then bring it!” All Might shouts.
“Let’s get out of here, we’re not ready for this yet.” Todoroki suggests.
“Midoriya, we oughta hang back for now. Rush in and they might take you hostage or something…” Kirishima says, but Izuku isn’t listening. He’s too focused on All Might.
‘He’s bluffing! It’s mixed in with the dust cloud, but that looks like the steam when he’s transforming!’ Kurogiri materializes beside Shigaraki.
“If only we still had nomu! If only! He was taking those hits so well!” Shigaraki whines.
“Tomura Shigaraki...calm yourself. It’s apparent that nomu did manage to deal some real damage. The children are holding back, and reinforcements from the school are bound to arrive in a few minutes. If the two of us work together, we still have a chance.”
Shigaraki scratches at his neck. “Right...right...right. We can do this...the final boss is standing right here.”
Meanwhile, everyone is walking back beside Izuku. Kirishima’s voice is distant as Izuku’s stuck in his own head. ‘I’m...the only one who knows about All Might...but it’s Kurogiri and Shigaraki...there’s no chance they’ll hold back against me and if they do it’ll look suspicious...what do I do?’
Kurogiri and Shigaraki take off, charging for All Might. “This is revenge for nomu.” Kurogiri expands his mist, the portal expanding in front of All Might.
“Holy crap!” The hero shouts.
For the second time that day, Izuku’s moving before he can think. He’s in the air, legs broken from the amount of power he used. ‘I’m the only one who knows the trouble All Might’s in.’ Izuku sees Shigaraki’s eyes widen. Izuku aims for Kurogiri, his arm channeling his quirk. ‘I have to aim for his real body, that’ll smash him away!’ “GET AWAY FROM ALL MIGHT!” He cries out. Before he could land the hit, there was a bang and a bullet hit Shigaraki’s arm that extended toward All Might. A few more bullets are fired and they hit Shigaraki while passing through Kurogiri’s mist. Izuku lands on the ground, feeling nothing but pain. He looks up and sees the pro heroes standing at the entrance.
"I've forgotten who I am
Afraid it's too late
-The World Alive, Dreamer"
When Izuku wakes up he’s laying in a bed beside All Might. He looks around the room, confused about how he got there. Wasn’t he at the USJ? He sits up, wincing slightly. Recovery Girl looks over at him. “I see you’re awake, dear.” She says. Izuku glances over to All Might, feeling relief. He then looks down and sees that his arm is bandaged, and IV drip attached to it. “The situation being what it was...I can’t scold you two this time.” She sighs.
“I think...I’ve probably shortened my time limit again...I’ll be lucky if I still get an hour a day.” All Might admits, and all Izuku can feel is guilt. This is his fault.
“All Might…” He mumbles. “I’m sorry. I couldn’t do anything to help you.” Izuku apologizes, frowning.
“That’s not true.” The hero refutes. “If you hadn’t jumped in when you did, I’d have been dead.” All Might turns his head to look at Izuku, giving the boy a smile. “You saved me again, Young Midoriya.” Izuku smiles at All Might in response, but he still feels the guilt sitting in the pit of his stomach.
A police officer enters the room and Izuku falls quiet, tuning out the conversation between the officer and All Might in favor of thinking about the events that had just transpired.
Classes were canceled the next day, but the students of 1-A couldn’t rest easy. The teachers were discussing what happened, and the students were recovering, all except one.
Izuku sits in front of his father, head low. His father sits in front of him in his wheelchair, arms crossed. He doesn’t have to look up at the man to see that he’s disappointed. “Izuku…” The man begins. “Let me ask you a question. Is there a particular reason why you kept information from me?” Izuku tenses, afraid to answer. He’s scared of what his father will do if he does answer. “Shall I repeat the question, Izuku?” His father asks. “Why did you keep information from me?”
“What um...what information are you talking about?” Izuku asks, trying to keep his voice from trembling.
“I think you know what information I’m talking about.” Izuku doesn’t reply. He hears his father’s dry chuckle. “I thought we were close, Izuku. I didn’t think you’d start keeping secrets from me."
“Why did you attack U.A.?” Izuku asks the question before he can think about it. He finally looks up at his father.
“Now, that’s not fair, is it? Asking me a question when you won’t answer mine.” His father says, shaking his head. “But if you must know, it’s because you told me All Might would be there.” Izuku tenses, and the guilt comes crashing back, full force. “It was a chance to kill the world’s Symbol of Peace, why waste the opportunity?” Izuku bites his lip, nervous. “Now, since I’ve answered your question, be a good boy and answer mine, hm?”
“I didn’t…” Izuku pauses, trying to formulate his words carefully. “I didn’t keep any secrets from you, father.” His father frowns at him, and Izuku can see the disappointment written all over his face.
His father leans forward, reaching his arm out to him. “Y’know Izuku, I could very easily use my power to pull the information right out of you.” Izuku feels a chill run down his spine. He feels sick, and there’s something tugging at his brain. He’s felt something like this before. It’s like an overwhelming sense of pure power. He felt it when he met All Might for the first time, but this feeling didn’t feel like All Might’s power. It feels like something more...sinister. “You understand that, don’t you? That’s why I’m going to give you a choice.”
Izuku’s no longer sitting down in his seat. Instead, he’s in someone’s arms and he hears the cry of a woman. He looks over at her just in time to watch her fall onto the floor. He sees an arm reach out to her and thinks ‘Whose arm is that?’ He hears a voice and turns to look at where it was coming from. When he turns he looks into cold, lifeless eyes.
“Izuku!” He’s pulled back to the living room where he sat, his father in front of him. He looks into the man’s eyes and sees that same coldness in them. Izuku feels very, very insignificant to the man in front of him. He shuts his eyes and inhales, counting to ten.
“I’m sorry, father,” He begins, looking at him. “I didn’t think that those quirks were that impressive compared to someone like Shigaraki or Kurogiri. I also took into account their current abilities and their education. I didn’t think they were worth telling you about.” Izuku explains, hoping his father believes.
The man is quiet for a few minutes, thinking. Izuku unconsciously stays as still as possible, feeling that if he moved one inch his father wouldn’t believe him, and something bad would happen. Finally, his father speaks, “I suppose you have a point.” Izuku feels the tension leave his shoulders as they sag. “But, I’d appreciate it if you tell me every little detail, next time. We wouldn’t want Shigaraki going in unprepared, would we?” Izuku shakes his head. “You’re free to go now, Izuku. Make sure you get some rest,” His father rolls his chair closer to Izuku and pats his head. “Wouldn’t want you to miss school tomorrow.” With that, his father leaves the room, leaving Izuku behind.
The air in the room is no longer tense, and Izuku can finally breathe, no longer feeling the sinister energy he felt before. He takes a large breath, trying to understand what just happened. Izuku can’t believe that his father believed what he told him. The feeling of his father’s hands in his hair lingers, and for some reason, Izuku feels sick.
The next day at school, Izuku can’t focus. He’s confused by what happened between he and his father discussed the day before. He can’t wrap his head around the way his father acted, and the coldness in his eyes. It confused Izuku. Did he even really know his father? How much did had he been told over the years? All of his life, Izuku thought his father was a small time villain, but maybe he was wrong. He’s never thought much about what type of villain the man was, but he saw how cold his eyes became. That coldness usually wasn’t found in small time villains. The sinister energy he felt from his father? Only incredibly powerful villains had that type of power, and for the first time in years, Izuku found himself afraid. Izuku found--
“Everyone! Homeroom is about to begin! To your seats!” Iida shouts, standing in front of the class. Izuku looks to the front of the room, his friend’s antics momentarily distracting him from his thoughts, thankfully.
“Iida, you’re the only one standing still.” Sero says, and the class rep quiets, clearly embarrassed by the call out. Just as he’s walking to his seat, the door to the classroom opens.
“Morning.” Aizawa greets, walking into the room covered head to toe in bandages.
“Mr. Aizawa?!” The class shouts.
“Glad to see you doing well, Mr. Aizawa!” Iida exclaims.
“My welfare isn’t important, because your fight is far from over.” Aizawa says and the class quiets immediately.
“Don’t tell me..” Izuku mumbles. He wasn’t ready for more villains to face, not when he was battling his biggest one yet.
“U.A.’s Sports Festival is quickly approaching.” Aizawa explains and Izuku feels the tension leave his shoulders. How tense were they?
“Are you sure this a good idea? We were just attacked by villains, Mr. Aizawa.” Mineta comments.
“It’s necessary to demonstrate that U.A.’s crisis management protocols are sound, that’s the thinking behind it anyways. Compared to past years, there’ll be five times the police presence. Anyhow, our Sports Festival is the greatest opportunity you’ll get. It’s not an event that can be cancelled over a few villains.”
Izuku tunes out his teacher, already knowing what the Sports Festival was about. He doesn’t do it on purpose though, it’s just that he’s incredibly tired and his head is currently an absolute mess. He stayed up late the night before doing research on villains from the past fifteen years. The confrontation with his father really bothered him. He wasn’t able to rest easy the night before, not when his mind was screaming at him that something was wrong. There was more going on, and Izuku has to know, he has to figure it out.
He doesn’t realize it, but the bell is ringing and Uraraka is standing beside him. “Deku?” She asks, waving her hand in front of his face. “Dekuuu?” She calls.
“Ah! Sorry Uraraka!” Izuku hastily apologizes, snapping out of his daze. Uraraka looks at him, concerned.
“Are you alright, Deku? You’ve been spacey all morning.” She asks, worriedly.
“Ah, yeah! I’m alright, don’t worry about me.” Izuku replies, giving her a small smile. He glances over at the front of the classroom where Aizawa stands, going through a few papers. He stands up from his desk. “I have something I have to ask Mr. Aizawa, I’d feel bad if you missed too much of lunch waiting for me.” He says, looking at the girl.
Uraraka looks at him with uncertainty before nodding. “I’ll save a seat for you then, Deku.” With that she leaves the room. After Uraraka leaves, Izuku walks over to Aizawa, nervously.
“Um..Mr. Aizawa?” Izuku asks. “Is it okay if I ask you something?”
Aizawa looks up from his papers. “Go ahead.”
“Have there been any major villain fights that happened within the last ten years that you can remember?” He asks, and his teacher gives him an odd look.
“Not that I can remember, no. All Might has prevented major fights from happening.” His teacher answers. From beneath the bandages, Izuku can see his eyes narrow. “Why the sudden question about big villain fights, Midoriya?”
Izuku freezes, not expecting his teacher to ask such a question. “It’s um...for my analysis notebook. You never know what type of information you can learn.” He lies, and Izuku hates how easy it is for him to do so.
Aizawa nods and goes back to his papers. “You should hurry up and get to lunch, Midoriya.”
“Right, thank you, sir.”
The two weeks before the Sports Festival go by in a blink of an eye and Izuku finds himself standing in the waiting room with his classmates. Some of them are chattering with one another, while others are doing breathing exercises, trying to relax. Izuku is one of them, a hand on his chest as he breathes. He’s spent the past two weeks researching nonstop about villains, and training with both his father and All Might.
Izuku looks over and sees Todoroki standing in front of him, a hand in his pocket. “Todoroki...what is it?” He asks. Izuku takes note that most of his classmates are looking at them, watching.
“Objectively speaking...I’m stronger than you. More capable.” The boy admits, and it surprises Izuku. After what happened at the USJ, they didn’t speak much.
“Huh?” Is all Izuku can manage, because he knows he’s probably as strong as Todoroki.
“All Might’s got his eye on you, doesn’t he?” Izuku stares at him, feeling a jolt of panic. “Now I’m not about to pry into why that is, but...I will beat you.” Todoroki boldly declares, and Izuku falls quiet.
“Ooh! A declaration of war from the strongest in the class?!” Kaminari exclaims.
“Hey, man, why pick a fight now? We’re about to go on-” Kirishima tries to say, putting his hand on Todoroki’s shoulder.
“I really don’t care. I’m not pretending to be anyone’s friend, here.” Todoroki interrupts Kirishima, brushing off the boy’s hand on his shoulder. The atmosphere is incredibly tense.
“You aren’t the only one going for first place, Todoroki.” Izuku cracks a small smile, one full of confidence. He can tell it surprises a few of his classmates. “I guess we’ll just have to wait and see if you declared war on the right person.” His response clearly shocks Todoroki, he can see it on his face. Before anything else can happen, the class is being led out into the stadium, Izuku right in the front, wearing nothing but confidence on his face.
Before anything began, Midnight had called up Bakugou as a representative of class 1-A. His speech was short and came off as egotistical, but Izuku knew better. That was Bakugou’s way of encouraging himself, he was building up his confidence. Even though the two boys had barely spoken, Izuku knew that Bakugou no longer viewed his classmates as if they were entirely beneath him. It made Izuku happy to see.
After Bakugou’s speech, Midnight announced the first challenge they’d be doing. It was an obstacle course. The very first obstacle they had to face though, was tight space. Barely anybody was able to make it through. First it was Todoroki, then it was Bakugou, Kirishima, Yaoyorozu and other 1-A students, Izuku being one of them. He couldn’t use much of One for All, but he was able to use enough that gave him a boost. After escaping the tight space of the hallway, they had to face robots, ones that students from the entrance exam had already faced. Izuku had used a metal scrap from a destroyed robot to fight his way through. He couldn’t be reckless with his quirk, not yet.
A lot of students passed him, and some gave him odd looks when they saw him lugging around scrap metal. Said scrap metal came in handy when Izuku reached the final obstacle. Thanks to Present Mic’s commentary, Izuku knew that Bakugou and Todoroki were fighting for first place. He looked down at the minefield and strategized. There were a lot of untouched mines from where he was and he decided to dig them up and use their explosions to propel him past the other students. He ended up flying above Todoroki and Bakugou and used their shoulders to land safely.
He could feel his heart beating rapidly in his chest as he ran for the exit, Bakugou and Todoroki running behind him.
Izuku was the one who got first place though.
Izuku’s original idea had been to team up with Uraraka and Iida, seeing as how with their quirks, they made the perfect teammates for the cavalry battle. However, the only person Izuku was able to team up with was Uraraka. He cried tears of relief when she approached him and asked to join teams, thankful she wasn’t scared off by the ten million points he was worth. When they went to Iida, they discovered he teamed with Todoroki, wanting to improve himself. Instead of being disappointed, Izuku gave Iida a smile and a wish of good luck. After, Izuku found Tokoyami and Hatsume. They were great additions to the team.
After the fifteen minutes passed, they were relatively safe. Until Todoroki went for them. They were able to escape a few times, but then one of Hatsume’s inventions broke and they couldn’t use their plan of escape. Things were getting close for the two teams, but then Iida whipped out a special move that gave Todoroki the chance to the steal Izuku’s headband. When he felt his headband leave his head, Izuku didn’t feel panic. It was more of a disappointment than anything. His teammates were depending on him and he failed them.
Uraraka ended up pushing them into chasing after their stolen points and Izuku couldn’t have been more grateful. They used everything they could to get the points back, but Izuku had grabbed the wrong headband. The match finished after that, and Midnight announced which teams moved onto the next round. Just as Izuku was about to apologize for letting his team down, Tokoyami told him what he had Dark Shadow do. Using his quirk, Tokoyami was able to grab another headband and it bumped them up, allowing them to advance to the next round.
Izuku was so happy that he bursted into tears, thanking his team.
After the end of the cavalry battle, Todoroki pulls Izuku aside to talk to him. They’re standing in the hallway to a student waiting room, and Todoroki is staring him down. “You...wanted to talk?” Izuku aks him, being reminded to the confrontation he had with his father a few weeks ago. “About what…?” Todoroki glares at Izuku, and he feels uncomfortable by it. The glare is different than the glares he got from Bakugou. No, Todoroki’s glare was similar to that of a wounded animal trying to scare away possible predators. Izuku was unnerved by it. Why would his classmate have such a glare?
“You overwhelmed me. So much so that I broke my own pledge.” Todoroki says, frowning.
‘It would given him an advantage, but he didn’t use his left side…’ Izuku’s eyes drifted down to Todoroki’s left hand, currently stuffed in the boy’s pocket.
“Iida, Kaminari, Yaoyorozu, Tokoyami, Uraraka...none of them felt it. In that last instant, I was the only one feeling that pressure.” Todoroki mumbles and Izuku can feel his heart beginning to pound harshly in his chest.
“What’re you saying, Todoroki?”
“I felt the same pressure coming from you,” Todoroki raises his left hand and holds it out in front of his face. “So...are you All Might’s illegitimate child or something?”
Izuku’s first reaction is to laugh because he so badly wants to. ‘ Sometimes, I wish I was.’ He wants to say, but he doesn’t. Instead, he inhales, and looks at Todoroki. “I’m not.” He denies. “Although, even if I was his kid, I’d try to deny it, so it may not help prove my point, but no, that’s not it.” Izuku explains. “So...let me ask you, why would you think that I-”
“‘No, that’s not it’, interesting way to phrase it..there’s definitely something you’re hiding, I’m sure of it.” Todoroki says, narrowing his eyes. “You know, my father is Endeavor. The second greatest hero of all time. So if you’re somehow connected to All Might, then all the more reason to beat you.”
Izuku frowns, but Todoroki continues talking. “My dad...he’s a powerful bastard who only thinks of becoming stronger. Yeah, he’s gone all out to make a name for himself as a hero, but...he’s always seen All Might as a roadblock and an eyesore. My father could never beat All Might on his own. So he came up with another plan."
“What’s this about, Todoroki? Why are you telling me this?” Izuku asks him, not understanding why he of all people was being told this. What did Todoroki have to gain by telling him this?
“Quirk marriages. You’ve heard of them, yeah?” Todoroki replies, ignoring Izuku’s question.
Izuku blinks. “Ah, yeah. They became a problem a few generations after quirks appeared.”
“With his wealth and fame, my father made my mother’s family agree to the marriage, all to get his hands on her quirk. Raising me as a hero who could exceed All Might, just to fulfill his own ambitions. I hate it! Being no more than a tool for that bastard.” Todoroki brings a hand to rest over the left side of his face, where his scar is. “In every memory I have of her, my mother was always crying. She told me she couldn’t bare to look at my left side anymore before she threw scalding water in my face."
Izuku’s eyes widen as he looks at his classmate, horrified.
“In short, not using my left side against you was my revenge on him. By rising to the top without using my left side, I’ll have denied him everything.” Todoroki explains, a dark look in his eyes. Izuku doesn’t like that look, it doesn’t suit someone like Todoroki. “Your connection with All Might, keep it to yourself if you wat. Either way, I’ll rise above you with just my right side. Sorry for wasting your time.” With that, the boy exits the hallway, walking out onto the path back.
Izuku watches him for a few minutes. ‘What in the world could I possibly say to him..? He’s like a protagonist of a comic book, one who has a dark past, but he’s trying to do the right thing in spite of it…’ He thinks, clenching his fists. ‘If he keeps neglecting his left side like this...he’s going to run himself into the ground.’
“Todoroki…” Izuku calls, “I may not have had the same experiences as you, but I know what it feels like to be obsessed with something you really want. It consumes you, maybe sometimes it gives you false hope, that maybe, just maybe, things will work out for once. But denying who you are? That won’t help you, it’ll only make things worse...don’t do that to yourself.”
Todoroki stops to turn around and look at Izuku, the wind blowing through his hair. “Sounds like you speak from experience.”
Izuku cracks a small, sad smile, one that doesn’t reach his eyes. “Heh, we all have our own demons.”
After Izuku’s fight with Shinsou, he’s sitting in the nurse’s office with All Might. Recovery Girl finishes with bandaging the fingers he broke during the match. In the end, he had fallen victim to Shinsou’s mind control (Izuku had to admit, it was a powerful quirk, and he’d love to analyze it some time), but was able to break out of it. He still wasn’t sure how he did it, and he had been explaining to All Might what he saw.
“One of them had your hairstyle…” Izuku explains. “Could it have been the souls of the people who’ve inherited One for All?”
His mentor shudders and looks at him, wide eyed. “What the- Sounds scary.”
Izuku stares at All Might in disbelief. “What? I was sure you’d know!” He exclaims.
“I have, but I only ever saw them once, when I was younger. It’s a clear sign that you’re getting used to One for All.” All Might says, crossing his arms. “They’re the traces of the quirk’s past bearers. But whatever they are, they can’t directly interfere or influence you, nor can you affect them. In other words, that vision wasn’t what undid the brainwashing. Your strong will allowed you to see those faces, and as far as Shinsou’s brainwashing, you overcame it! Just for an instant, you managed to move that fingertip all on your own!”
Izuku isn’t sure why, but his chest feels warm. He’s fighting back a smile from spreading across his face. He can hear the pride in his mentor’s voice and it makes him happy to hear. He scratches the back of his head bashfully. “Yeah...I’m still not really convinced…” He murmurs. For a minute he thinks of his father and he remembers the question he’s been meaning to ask his mentor. “Oh, that’s right!” He looks at the hero. “All Might, do you know if there are any heroes here that would remember major villain fights from the past ten years?” He asks.
All Might hums in response, putting a hand on his chin. “An odd question, young Midoriya, but I believe Endeavor is here today, if you’d like to ask him about villain fights.” He replies. “But if you have any questions, I’d be happy to answer them, my boy.”
“Ah, I know!” Izuku replies hastily. “I wanted to get information from other heroes to get a different perspective.” He explains. “N-Not that I think you’re perspective isn’t important, All Might! It’s just that-” He’s cut off by All Might’s laughter.
“I understand, young Midoriya, don’t worry.” He says, patting Izuku’s curls. Izuku looks up at All Might, slightly surprised. He wasn’t expecting All Might to pat his head. The action stirred feelings within Izuku, but he didn’t feel what he felt when it was his father patting his head. With his father, he felt...submissive almost. He felt smaller than his father, but with All Might? He feels warmth, and oddly enough? He feels cared for.
Izuku gives All Might a smile and stands up from the chair Recovery Girl had seated him in to bandage his hand. “Thank you,” He says as he exits the nurse’s office.
Izuku had returned just in time to see Todoroki fight Sero. It was a quick match, and once again, Izuku saw this look on Todoroki’s face and he wanted to do something about it. He wasn’t sure why, but the look bothered him. After that match was Kaminari versus a student from class 1-B, Shiozaki, and following that was Kirishima and Tsetsutsetsu. That had been quite the match. Then there was Iida’s match which had been quite...informative. He went up against the same girl that had been apart of Izuku’s cavalry team. She spent the whole match advertising her creations and then forfeited once she was done. Lastly, it was Uraraka versus Bakugou. Izuku wasn’t worried about Uraraka, he knew she could handle herself quite well. Even though her plan was incredibly risky (and somewhat dangerous, Izuku was glad she wasn’t hurt by it), he was really proud of her.
After the first round matches were done, Izuku headed to his waiting room. He had ran into Bakugou, barely speaking a word to him. Things between them were...tense. They hadn’t spoken at all since their fight, and all they had done was glare at one another. Izuku hopes Bakugou will get over what happened eventually. He hates the tension between them.
He walks to his waiting room, deep in thought. He doesn’t see a large flaming man in front of him until the man speaks. “Oh, it’s you.”
Izuku looks up at him, startled. “E-Endeavor?!” He stammers. “I um...I’m not sure what you’re doing back here, but could I ask you a question?” He asks, and wow Izuku can feel the pure power the man has just standing a few feet in front of him. It reminded him a bit of his father and it was practically terrifying.
“What is it?” The hero asks.
“Has there been any major villain fights from the past ten years you can remember?” Izuku asks.
“Major villain fights, huh?” Endeavor grumbles. “Of course there’s been major villain fights. Some villains I’ve caught have mentioned something about a boss though.”
‘A boss..?’ Izuku thinks, already trying to fit the information he received into the information he already learned. He’s about to say ‘thank you’ for the information when Endeavor speaks before he can.
“That’s quite the quirk you have there...creating such a force with just a flick of your finger! In terms of power, it seems on par with All Might’s quirk.”
Izuku tenses. He’s annoyed already by this man. Funny, they tell you never to meet your idols for a certain reason, huh? “If you’ll excuse me, sir, I have to get going…” Izuku says, turning away from the pro.
“My Shouto has a duty to surpass All Might.” Izuku can hear the venom spilling from Endeavor’s voice, and he wants to punch the hero. He really does. “His match against you...will prove a valuable test. So give it your all. Put up a good fight against him.” The air is filled with tension. Neither of them speak for a few minutes. “That’s all I have to say. Sorry for my bluntness."
“Todoroki isn’t a tool for you to use to inflate your ego, and I’m not going to be a stepping stone in the process. Our match? It isn’t a test, sir, it’s our opportunity to prove ourselves.” He pauses. Izuku finds himself thinking back to a few hours ago, when Todoroki cornered him in that hallway and told him his past, his motivation. Izuku hadn’t been quite sure about what to do or how to help him, but now? Now, Izuku knows exactly how to help his classmate. He turns back to look at Endeavor, a smile plastered on his face. “Thank you, Endeavor, for the motivational words.” He turns and walks away, leaving the hero behind.
He hears the man mutter a surprised, “Tch, like any of that was motivational.”
Izuku walks out onto the arena, facing Todoroki. The smile is no longer on his face, it’s replaced with a determined fire in his eyes. Todoroki looks at him. “You ready?” He asks. Izuku doesn’t reply, taking a small breath instead.
“Both of these competitors have won top marks in this festival so far!” Present Mic’ voice booms with excitement. “But there’s only room for one of these great students in the ring! It’s….” He builds up suspense for the crowd. “MIDORIYA VERSUS TODOROKI!” The crowd lets out wild cheers of excitement. A million thoughts are running through Izuku’s head. He briefly wonders if his father is watching the festival along with Shigaraki. He wonders if his father will congratulate him when he returns home. Shaking the thoughts away, he uses his left hand to grip his right hand by the wrist. He then holds down his middle finger with his thumb. ‘As soon as this starts, Todoroki will probably fire off an ice blast. There’s no telling how big it’ll be, so it’s best to use full power until I can get a solid strategy against him.’ Just as Izuku guesses, a large wall of ice is sent his way, towering over him. He flicks his finger, blasting straight through the ice. The pressure blows both boys back a bit, shards of ice flying throughout the arena.
“I expected as much.” Todoroki says, frowning.
Izuku watches as Todoroki creates the same wall of ice again. When the ice is close enough, he flicks another finger. ‘From what I’ve seen, Todoroki’s fights always end in a flash. I haven’t learned much from watching him. I’ll have to learn while fighting. I’ll just observe and look for an opening.’ Todoroki creates a wall of ice behind him, most likely keeping him from falling out of bounds. Izuku glances down at his fingers. He has six shots left. Todoroki clicks his tongue and yet again, creates the ice. Izuku flicks a third finger, destroying the ice.
Izuku knows what’ll happen if he keeps this up. People’s quirks are physical abilities. They all have some kind of limit. Use them too much and a person will get tired quickly. ‘Todoroki has to have some kind of limit!’
“So you’re trying to stretch the match out?” Todoroki comments, creating his ice. “Not happening. I’ll end this quickly.”
Damn, Izuku’s really starting to get annoyed by how stubborn Todoroki is. He holds his arms out, flicking the fourth finger on his hand. ‘Crap! My hand...it’s done!’ He’s momentarily distracted and doesn’t realize Todoroki’s above him until he feels a punch that sends him flying a few feet. Todoroki creates a mountain of ice that catches his foot. ‘He’s too close!’ Izuku thinks, panicked. In his moment of panic, he sacrifices his whole arm to destroy the ice. When the smoke clears away, Izuku is standing, left arm purple and bleeding. ‘Sorry, All Might.’ He can’t help but think.
“That’s a lot stronger than your earlier attacks. Are you trying to tell me to stay back?”
‘He’s way more than just his quirk...he’s got excellent judgement, execution, mobility...everything about him is strong!’
“Only defending and dodging? It’s taking a toll on you.”
Izuku looks up at his classmate. He can see the other boy’s breath and the small patches of ice forming on his right arm. That’s when he realizes it. Todoroki is shivering. Izuku blocks out all of the chatter from the audience, focusing on his next move.
“Sorry for all of this. I appreciate it though, Midoriya. Thanks to you, he doesn’t look too happy. With both hands destroyed you can’t fight anymore. Let’s end this.” Izuku hears the formation of ice before he sees it.
“WHO SAYS I’M DONE?!” Izuku shouts, using his already broken finger to fire off a blast. The blast sends Todoroki into the block of ice he made, while Izuku stands, hand throbbing with pain. He ignores it.
“Why go that far?!” Todoroki exclaims.
“You’re shivering, Todoroki.” Izuku says. “Quirks are just physical abilities. You must have a limit to how much of that cold you can bear!” He exclaims. “But then...you could always use your left side to thaw yourself out, right?” Izuku’s eyes narrow and he glares . “Everyone’s giving it their all to win...to achieve their goals...to make it to the top! And you’re telling me that you’re going to win by half-assing it?! Give me a break! Look at me Todoroki!” Izuku shouts, and he knows Todoroki can hear how angry he sounds. He clenches his fist tightly. “You haven’t put a single scratch on me! STOP BEING AFRAID OF YOURSELF AND COME AT ME WITH EVERYTHING YOU’VE GOT!”
“What are you planning?” Todoroki growls. “Everything I’ve got?” He asks. “Did my bastard father pay you off or something?” He suddenly dashes forward and Izuku dashes too. “You’re pissing me off!”
Izuku half smirks. “You’ve been pissing me off since lunch!” He retorts, ducking low as Todoroki lifts his leg for a kick. ‘Imagine the microwave, don’t explode!’ Using One for All, Izuku lands a hit on Todoroki, punching him in the stomach. His hand explodes with pain, but he can still fight.
Todoroki lands on the ground, coughing. He pushes himself back up, holding the area Izuku hit. “So now you’re on the offensive?” He asks. He stomps on the ground, creating ice.
“It’s not just you that’s slowing down. Your ice is weaker too!” ‘I can’t make a fist..’ Izuku thinks, using his cheek to flick his thumb. It cracks the ice.
“Why are you doing this far?!” Todoroki shouts.
“I have to prove myself to him!” Izuku cries out. “I have to prove that I’m strong enough to be someone who can protect and defend! That’s why I’m giving it everything!” Izuku pushes Todoroki back, almost losing his footing. “Your experiences...I can’t even begin to imagine what all that’s like...but I know how it feels to deny who you are! If you become number one without giving it all...then I don’t think you’re as serious about being number one as you sound!”
“Shut up!” Todoroki shouts.
Izuku runs forward, punching him once again. “I have to surpass you!”
Todoroki lands on the grounds, Izuku still standing. He pants, arms burning with pain. He ignores the burn. He’s too focused on making sure Todoroki gets his point. It takes a few seconds, but Todoroki slowly pushes himself up. “I’ll show my father…”
Dammit, did Todoroki not hear a word Izuku just said?! “IT’S YOUR POWER!” He screams it. He needs Todoroki to understand. “YOUR QUIRK, NOT HIS!” It takes a few seconds but suddenly the arena is hot and there’s a blazing flame in front of him.
“I thought you wanted to win? Why’re you trying to inspire me? Which one of us isn’t taking this seriously now?” Todoroki says. “But I...wanna be a hero too!” He says it with a strained smile, and Izuku’s own smile is blinding.
“I was getting worried there for a second, Todoroki. I thought I’d have to get creative in order for you to understand what I was trying to say.” Izuku says with a grin.
“What’re you smiling about? With those wounds...and in this situation, you must be crazy.”
“Heh, I just might be.” Izuku laughs dryly.
Todoroki narrows his eyes. “It’s not problem what happens to you now.”
The two boys power up as much of their quirks as they can, alerting the teachers. Izuku and Todoroki both take steps forward, and the battle is over within seconds.
"We can't abandon those who've been branded
It's hard to believe we don't belong
-The World Alive, Branded"
While sitting in the waiting room. Shouto looks at his left hand, thoughts racing through his mind. He finds himself thinking of his mother, how much she hated his left side because it reminded her of his father.
“STOP BEING AFRAID OF YOURSELF AND COME AT ME WITH EVERYTHING YOU’VE GOT!”
“IT’S YOUR POWER!”
“YOUR QUIRK, NOT HIS!”
He hears the whistle of a kettle and sees the crazed look in his mother’s eyes. ‘How did this happen? I pushed her out of my mind, I tried not think about her. Then that fight with Midoriya…’ He clenches his fist. ‘Mom…’ His thoughts trail back to Midoriya, and he remembers the strength and conviction the boy had. It was...admirable, almost inspiring.
The door kicks open and Shouto looks over at the person responsible for kicking it open. Bakugou stands there, surprise visible on his face. “Hey, what the hell are you doing in here?” He asks. His eyes trail over to the sign by the door. “This is my space to--crap! This is waiting room number two!”
Shouto looks away from him, brushing him off. Apparently that pissed Bakugou off and he walks further into the room. “Alright, so I may have walked into the wrong room, but don’t think that means I’m not gonna be on top of my game, you got that?” He declares, firing off mini explosions as he hits the table Shouto’s looking at. “You better bring all you’ve got to this IcyHot!”
“Midoriya…” Shouto mumbles. “He said the same thing.” He lifts his left hand up, closer to his face. “That fool, instead of trying to win the match he focused on breaking my walls.” Shouto looks over at Bakugou, asking, “You guys used to be childhood friends right? Was he like that when you were kids? So helpful…” He trails off.
“What does he have to do with any of this?” Bakugou hisses. He kicks the table away in annoyance. “It’s all between you and me now! Focus on the match, that’s the only thing I give a damn about!” Shouto frowns and watches Bakugou leave. His thoughts trail back to Midoriya and he sighs. He looks down at his left hand once more. He has a lot to think about.
Toshinori stares at his student, a heavy feeling weighing down his shoulders. He can hear Midoriya’s quiet groans of pain. Both of his arms are bandaged in casts. “His right arm’s shattered. This won’t be easy to set back to normal. First I’ll have to remove the bone splinters from his joints...healing comes after.” Recovery Girl sighs, her eyes drifting over Midoriya’s form. “This boy admires you so much he’s willing to destroy himself. You lit that fire. You moved him to this...I don’t like it. Not one bit...you’re overdoing it, both you and this boy.” Recovery Girl gives him a pointed glare. “You’d better not praise him for it.” She says.
Toshinori jumps, startled by the door slamming open as Uraraka, Iida, and Asui enter the infirmary.
Midoriya blinks a bit as he looks at his friends. “Guys...the next match…” He mumbles.
“The arena was mostly destroyed, so there’s a break while it’s being repaired.” Iida explains.
“We came because we were worried! You and Todoroki really went all out!” Uraraka adds, worry shining in her eyes. Asui nods her head in agreement.
“Pipe down! It’s fine to worry, but he’s about to have surgery!” Recovery Girl exclaims, trying to shoosh them out of the room.
“Surgery?!” The boys friend’s exclaim. Toshinori can’t help his small smile. The kid has good friends.
“I’m sorry...I couldn’t do it…” Midoriya whimpers. Toshinori looks over at him, frowning. He knew that the boy was talking about the conversation they had before the Sports Festival.
“I want you to tell the world that you are here!”
The unspoken words put more weight on Toshinori’s shoulders. “Maybe if I’d just shut up...but I had to say what I did to Todoroki. I couldn’t let him keep hurting himself like that.” Neither of them notice that the others in the room were listening in.
“You...were trying to bring it out of him.” Toshinori says.
Izuku nods and how selfless can this boy be? “His glare...it just didn’t suit him. His face screamed that he was hurting, but he was trying to keep everyone away from him. It was just too sad...I thought maybe I should just mind my own business...but I had to...because at that point I couldn’t take it anymore...it was just so frustrating!” Toshinori looks away, unable to bear seeing Midoriya like this. “I forgot why I was there...I lost myself...I’m sorry.” He apologizes, and Toshinori feels like the boy is waiting to be scolded. His body language screams it.
“An unfortunate outcome, indeed, and calling you a fool won’t change what happened.” He sees Midoriya wince. “However, giving help that’s not asked for...is part of what makes a true hero.” Toshinori says.
Izuku stares at his now crooked right hand. Recovery Girl looks at him. “Let that damaged right hand of yours serve as a reminder.” She says. “And I refuse to heal this sort of injury from now on. Enough with this self destruction. Find another way for the boy to manage.” She orders, sighing.
Izuku stands up from the bed he was sitting on and leaves, planning on going back to watch the rest of the matches. All Might trails behind him as he thinks about how he’s been using his quirk. “Another way, huh…” All Might mumbles.
“All Might, you originally became a teacher at U.A. to find a successor, right? Everyone’s fighting with all they’ve got here...their unrelenting spirits...I can feel how strong they all are. So I’m thinking that-"
“That maybe I should find someone else to replace you? Is that it?” All Might asks him, making Izuku wince and nod. “It’s true the students here are all exemplary heroes in the making. ‘One for All’ is a lattice of power. If someone with a preexisting quirk like Young Todoroki, were to inherit it...he would become an undeniable superhero, with super strength on top of his fire and ice powers.”
“Well, then-” Izuku tries to say that maybe he should give the quirk to someone like Todoroki, someone more deserving of it.
“But, I see no need.” All Might interrupts. “You’re already exceeded my expectations more times than I can count, Young Midoriya. In my heart, I believe that there’s something special in you and you alone, my boy. I know you may think of otherwise, but your match with Young Todoroki proves my point. You were willing to forfeit the match in order to save him from himself.” All Might smiles at him, patting his head. Izuku immediately feels the warmth radiating from the man. “I’m extremely proud of you, kid. Though next time, try not to break your arms okay?” The hero jokes.
“I’m sorry…” Izuku apologizes, lowering his head. He hears All Might chuckle.
“There’s nothing to apologize for, kid.” He replies. “C’mon, let’s go watch the rest of the matches.” All Might suggests, slinging an arm across Izuku’s shoulders. Izuku feels himself tense, not used to the contact. If All Might notices him tense up, he doesn’t say anything. They continue walking in silence, before it’s broken. “Y’know, I was born quirkless too.” Izuku’s eyes widen and he looks up at his mentor. “Being quirkless was also rare, back in my day, though, not as rare as it is now. My teacher, my predecessor actually, possessed a quirk, but she still believed in me and took me under her wing.”
Izuku stops walking and he looks at All Might. “Why didn’t you ever tell me this?”
All Might laughs. “You never asked, although I was expecting it.”
“So...you were quirkless too?!” Izuku exclaims.
“Sure was kid. Let’s hurry and get back to watch the rest.”
Izuku gets back in the middle of Bakugou and Kirishima’s fight. He sits down beside Iida, smiling at his friend. “Midoriya!” The boy exclaims, catching Uraraka’s attention.
“Deku! You’re alright!” She cries in relief.
“I’m glad to see your surgery was a success!” Iida exclaims once more.
Izuku smiles a bit, nodding. “Right, thanks.” He says. “I’m sorry I missed your fight against Shiozaki, Iida. Did you win?” He asks.
“He sure did! He was so fast I could barely follow him!” Uraraka exclaims.
“Well, I knew my mobility wouldn’t mean much in the fight, so I used my reciproburst and threw her from the ring as soon as the match started.” Iida explains.
“That makes sense. I don’t think anyone’s mobility would have mattered against Shiozaki’s vines. I think at one point it definitely would have come down to speed, maybe strength too- ah! Sorry, I’m rambling.” Izuku apologizes, glad he stopped himself before he could ramble for too long. Both Uraraka and Iida laughed. Izuku then looks at Iida. “Do know you know if your brother...has been watching you?” He asks, thinking back to the conversation he and Uraraka had with Iida. He had told them about how he was the younger brother of Ingenium. Izuku remembers gushing about how amazing Ingenium was.
“He called me earlier, but he was busy with work.” Iida explains. “I’m actually glad though. Even after coming this far, I still can’t say I’m number one yet.” He says, and Izuku understands. Iida wants to prove himself to his brother, and Izuku knows the feeling.
Suddenly the crowd erupts in cheer, and the conversation between Izuku and Iida stops. They watch as Bakugou takes out Kirishima. Iida stands from his seat saying, “Here I go.”
“Good luck, Iida!” Uraraka and Izuku exclaim as the boy walks away.
The next match is Iida versus Todoroki. Izuku watches the two, wondering how Todoroki will handle himself. Would he use his left side?
In the end, he didn’t. He won by freezing the exhaust pipes in one of Iida’s legs. After, Todoroki froze Iida entirely and stopped him from moving.
Izuku made sure to tell Iida he did a good job. The class rep gave him a small smile in response and was called away, telling Izuku and Uraraka that his mother was calling him. For some reason, Izuku had a bad feeling in his gut. He hoped for Iida’s sake, that his feeling was just a ruse.
Iida doesn’t come back when the final match begins. Bakugou charges in, going straight for Todoroki. It seems he’s trying to get him to use his left side. Izuku watches the fight, analyzing the two. “Who do you think will win, Deku?” Uraraka asks.
Izuku glances over to her. “Bakugou, probably.” He replies. “Todoroki is getting worn out. If you’re not looking for it, you won’t see how his attacks are getting slower like they did when I was fighting against him. There’s also a factor of his fire quirk. During our match he probably used up a lot of energy with that burst of fire, seeing as how out of control it was. It doesn’t look like he’s going to use it again for this match, no matter how much Bakugou eggs him on. If Bakugou keeps charging him without giving Todoroki a chance to breathe, he’ll most likely win.” Izuku explains.
Uraraka stares at him with wide eyes, surprised by his observations. “Wow, Deku. I kinda forgot how analytical you are.” She laughs lightly, rubbing the back of her head. “It really is amazing.” Izuku smiles bashfully at the complement and the two turn their attention back to the match.
The match goes on and at one point, Izuku finds himself yelling out to Todoroki. He yells encouragement and hopes it’ll push the other boy on. Moments like this make Izuku think that he’s finally apart of something real. He’s apart of a team, and everyone on that team is trying their hardest to succeed. They’re all working toward the same goal and Izuku feels a warmth in his chest at the thought. ‘Am I really apart of all of this though?’ He asks himself, ‘The only reason I’m here is because this is where my father wanted to put me. I’m only here because he gains something from this…’ Did Izuku even belong here?
“Looks like you were right, Deku.” Uraraka’s voice breaks him from his thoughts.
“Huh?” He asks, looking at her.
Uraraka glances at him and points a finger to the arena. “Bakugou won, just like you thought. Your analysis was spot on.” She says. There’s a feeling of disgust that runs through him when she says that.
The Sports Festival is quickly wrapped up after the final match. All Might awards the victors of the Festival with a bright smile and a shining gold medal. Bakugou seems to refuse his win, and his violent outbursts results in him being chained up. He even goes as far as to yell angrily at All Might as he tries to put the medal on him. In the end, the medal hangs from Bakugou’s mouth as he growls.
After everything is over, Izuku heads out of the school once everyone is dismissed. He’s wearing his normal school uniform now, the straps of his bag over his shoulders. He mumbles to himself about texting his father to let him know he was coming home.
“Midoriya.” A voice says and he stops in his tracks.
Izuku turns around to look at the person who called his name and sees Todoroki. “Oh, Todoroki!” He greets.
The boy nods in response. The two stand there for a few minutes, neither knowing what to do or say. Izuku guesses he isn’t the only one who’s bad at talking to people. He observes the boy in front of him and watches as Todoroki seems to fumble over unspoken words. He tries to say something, but stops himself. Izuku stands patiently and waits for Todoroki’s inner battle to be over.
“I’m not sure why you tried to help me during our match,” Todoroki finally begins, “But you were right. I was being stubborn. Thank you.” He says, and Izuku notices his eyes drift toward his bandaged hand. “Your hand…” He mumbles.
“Oh, this?” Izuku asks, holding his right hand. “It’s alright! Recovery Girl fixed it for me, it wasn’t injured too badly!” He exclaims, trying to ease Todoroki’s guilt. He could see the guilt in the boy’s eyes.
“Uraraka mentioned you needed surgery.” Todoroki said bluntly and Izuku inwardly winces.
“It’s okay, really! It was a result of my own recklessness, so I brought it upon myself!” He hurriedly explains, waving his hands dismissively. Todoroki frowns but doesn’t say anything else. Izuku notices him lingering and once more, he waits. When Todoroki doesn’t say anything, Izuku looks around, trying to look at anything but the boy in front of him. “Are you um...are you taking the train?” He asks, rubbing his hands together nervously.
“Yeah.” Todoroki replies.
Izuku’s smile is small as he offers, “Do you want to go there together than?” Todoroki nods and the two of them head to the station together, talking quietly, but with tiny smiles on their faces.
”But we're falling apart
We're lost in the dark
-The World Alive, Lost in the Dark”
The bar he stands in is quiet, the only occupants of the building being the other villains he’s surrounded by. A man sits in a chair in front of him, a large hand covering his face. Beside him is a man made of black mist, hands hanging by his sides. Sitting around the bar are a few others, but he doesn’t care to pay attention to them. He looks at the man, smirking a bit. “I get it…” He begins, “You’re the ones who attacked U.A. and you want me to join your little gang, right?” He asks. To be honest, the last thing he expected when the mist man portaled him here was an invitation join a group of villains.
“Yeah, exactly. When it comes to being evil, you’re a pro.” Hand man says.
“And what’re you after?”
Hand man tilts his head to the side, as if he were thinking. “Well, we want to kill All Might, eventually. But I also want to destroy everything I don’t like.”
He dryly chuckles, narrowing his eyes at hand man. “It’s ridiculous that you really had my interest for a second. You’re the type I hate the most,” He pulls at the blades hanging on his sides “As if I’d team up with some temper-tantrum-throwing child. Bloodlust without conviction is meaningless.”
Izuku mumbles to himself as he stares at the destroyed microwave in front of him. For the past week, he’s been staying with Gran Torino, the same man that helped mentor All Might, as part of his internship. Aizawa had explained to them that pros used the Sports Festival to scout for interns. Surprisingly, Izuku had gotten a lot of offers for his two weeks of experience. All Might suggested learning from Gran Torino since the man had a lot of experience with One for All. Izuku ended up following his mentor’s suggestion and went to Gran Torino’s.
He’s only been there for a few days and the man had already helped him immensely. With One for All, Izuku is able to channel the power throughout his body without being too slow or stiff. In the past, Izuku usually centralized the power to one part of his body, which resulted in more damage being done to that part. Especially after the Sports Festival, Izuku needed a better way to use his quirk. Thankfully, Gran Torino offered him some advice and he was able to figure out how to distribute the quirk evenly to his body. The one thing that confuses him however, is that his respect for All Might is shackling him. He didn’t know how to interpret it.
Izuku peeks over at Gran Torino, making sure he’s sleeping. When he sees it’s all clear, he makes his way to the door. He quietly opens it and pokes his head out, glancing around. When he sees the coast is clear, he heads to the alleyway by the house. Ever since he figured out how to channel the power throughout his body, he’s been practicing putting the idea into use. He stops at the entrance and looks up at the two walls of the building. “I can probably jump between these walls with five or eight percent...that should be enough.” He mumbles.
“This’ll be so cool if I can manage to do it.” Izuku squats down, powering his quirk in his legs and jumps. He throws his arms up and sees the wall growing closer to him. ‘I have to land carefully, brace my arms maybe. I have to-’ He’s cut off as he face plants into the wall. Izuku groans in pain as he lands in a pile of trash bags. “Gotta brace my legs...and I need cushions for my arms.” He mumbles as he stares up at the night sky. “Starting with the second jump, I need to power up both arms and legs...but with that instant boost, there’s the danger of breaking my limbs. Seems there just isn’t time for the whole visualization thing...okay, one more time…” He continues rambling as he pushes himself up from the bags.
“Okay, let’s try this again!”
Izuku groans as he lands upside down against the wall. Gran Torino stands above him, arms crossed. “Keep fighting against nothing but my old tactics, and you’ll develop some bad habits.” The man says. They were doing some training, and had been going at it since ten. It’s currently five in the evening.
“Forget habits. I’m barely used to this at all! Let’s keep going!” Izuku pleads.
“Nah, that’s enough.” Gran Torino refutes, putting a hand on his chin as he grins. “Time for phase two, the actual internship!”
Izuku’s face lights up and he rolls over so that he can properly sit up. “Really?!” He exclaims.
“Go put on your hero costume and we’ll head out.” Izuku blinks but does as he’s told. He quickly puts on his hero costume and follows Gran Torino out the door. “We’ll be hunting down villains!” The man explains.
“What?! Already?!” Izuku exclaims in disbelief.
“Like I said, fighting only me will leave you ill prepared to deal with other types of opponents! In this phase, you’ll pit yourself against all different sorts of villains for experience.”
Izuku puts a hand on his chest, already feeling his heart pound nervously. “I get what you’re saying...but I don’t think my heart’s quite ready for this…” He mumbles.
Gran Torino stops walking to turn back and look at him. “But you’ve already fought villains haven’t you? This won’t even come close to how bad that was. Where we’re going, crime rate is low. The denser the population, the more trouble there is. So in place like Shibuya, minor crime’s are a dime a dozen.” Gran Torino calls a taxi and they approach it, climbing inside.
“Shibuya?! No way, I’m gonna walk around that classy neighborhood in costume?!” Izuku says in surprise as he sits down.
“You only get to wear it because you’re with me, a hero! Just be glad you’re gonna get to strut your stuff in public!” Gran Torino exclaims, giving him a pointed look.
Izuku nervously chuckles in reply and that’s the end of that. He turns his attention to outside as they drive. ‘If we’re heading to Shibuya...that means we’ll pass by Hosu.’ He frowns slightly, wondering how Iida was holding up. ‘Maybe I’ll get in touch with him later…’
The Hero Killer: Stain stands over Hosu, eyeing down the city. Shigaraki stands behind him. “Livelier than I thought.” Shigaraki comments.
“I will reform this town, but for that...more sacrifices are needed.” Stain raises his arms up. “‘Hero’ is a title reserved for those who perform truly great feats! Too many are undeserving...just money worshippers playing hero! Until this society wakes up and corrects itself...I will continue my work.”
Unbeknownst to Stain, Shigaraki has plans of his own. ‘I’ll crush your pride and dignity Stain!’
Izuku looks unsurely over at Gran Torino. “Is it okay that we’re getting in at night?” He asks.
“Night’s perfect!” Gran Torino replies easily. “There are sure to be more incidents now. It’ll be fun.” He adds.
Izuku winces slightly. “I don’t know about fun, but I hear you..” He mumbles as he leans back into his seat. He then pulls out his phone, going onto his and Iida’s chat. He barely recognizes Gran Torino talking to him. ‘He read it, but still no reply...even though Iida always replies within three minutes of reading a text...I’m really worried about him.’ He sighs quietly as he turns his attention back to the window. He takes note of a loud boom! and he suddenly flies forward as the train skids to a rushed stop.
“Passengers, please remain seated. We’re making an emergency stop..” A sudden crash booms through the train car and Izuku sees a hero come flying in, smoke and debris following. Izuku’s eyes widen as he spots a creature standing in the new hole in the wall of the train.
‘A nomu?! Does that mean Shigaraki is up to something?!’ He thinks as people begin to panic. Gran Torino is the first to act, flying toward the nomu, pushing it out of the train.
“Stay there, kid!” The man shouts. Izuku runs to the hole, staring at the city before him. There was smoke almost everywhere. There were multiple explosions followed by explosions. ‘What the hell is happening?! If this is because of Shigaraki...what could he be planning? Wait-- Iida is in Hosu!’ He takes off before he can properly think, ignoring the protests of the train conductor. Using One for All to give himself a small boost, he tries to get to the city as fast as possible.
The streets are crowded with civilians screaming and running. Izuku tries his best to push past them, knocking into a few people here and there. ‘They’re all running from the center of the commotion. That guy on the train was most definitely a nomu. If it’s as powerful as the one back at the USJ, then not just Gran Torino, but the whole city is in trouble! Think, Izuku, think! What’s the best course of action?!’ He halts his sprint as he sees multiple heroes facing off against a lot of nomu.
“Tenya! Where are you?!” A hero shouts, catching Izuku’s attention. “How could he run off at a time like this?!”
‘He’s Iida’s mentor!’ Izuku notes. He looks at the nomu surrounding everyone and forces himself to think. ‘There’s no way, I can’t figure it out! What’s going on?!’ He yelps as a hero pushes him aside, instructing him to get to safety. ‘Think! Iida ran off somewhere, the always super serious class rep Iida! There’s no way that can’t be coincidental with all of thi trouble! Hosu...the nomu..Iida...Hosu…’ Izuku’s eyes widen when he finally makes the connection. He can hear his heart pounding his ears. ‘Hero Killer.’
With his heart still pounding, he spins on his heels and takes off. He prays he makes it in time.
‘I might be overthinking this, and it’s not like I have much proof, but that’s exactly why I have to take action here! In the same city where the Hero Killer appeared...we’ve got nomus rampaging around. I may be the only one in the whole city uneasy about the potential connection...the League of Villains and the Hero Killer...could they be working together?!’
Izuku uses as much of his quirk as he can without breaking his limbs. ‘If they are working together, it probably means the Hero Killer is somewhere around here right now! If Iida ran off somewhere...does that mean he’s found the Hero Killer?!’ He runs past an alleyway and that’s when he spots them. He sees Iida laying on the ground and suddenly he’s jumping between the walls and powering his quirk through his fist. “Bingo!” Izuku skids to a stop, standing in front of Iida.
“Midoriya?!” His classmate exclaims. “But why…?!”
“It was on tv! How sixty percent of the Hero Killer’s victims were discovered around blind corners in deserted areas. So I’ve been scouring the back alleys near the normal hero agency, close to the center of all the trouble...looking for you!” Izuku steps back toward Iida. “Can you move?! Make for the main road and get some pros to come help us!”
He hears Iida grunt. “I can’t move..! He cut me...that’s most likely his quirk…”
Izuku winces a bit. “They were talking about that...so he needs to cut you to get it to work?” His eyes trail over to another slouched body against the wall. ‘Another one! If it was just Iida I might’ve been able to carry him and run, but…’
“Midoriya, don’t interfere. This has nothing do with you!” Izuku can’t see the look on Iida’s face, but he can hear the anguish in his voice.
“Sorry to break it to you, Iida, but this has everything to do with me because you’re involved! Friends don’t leave other friends to deal with their problems alone!” ‘I think at least…’
“A friend shows up and says ‘I’m here to save you.’ A good line for sure, but it’s my duty to kill these two, and if we’re forced to fight then naturally...the weaker of us will be culled. So, what now?” The look on Stain’s face makes Izuku shudder.
He’s reminded of the look his father gave him the day after the USJ attack. He can tell Stain is more than the other villains he’s faced. Stain had conviction. Something someone like Shigaraki lacked. ‘Even with just a hunch and no proof...I should’ve persuaded some pros to come with me. Now I need to protect those two that are down. Maybe I can buy some time…’ He thinks as he sends a message on his phone before slipping it back into his pocket on his belt. ‘Or...drive off the Hero Killer all by myself...would I even be able to?’
Izuku gives a small smirk, one full of confidence. “What is it with me and murderous villains lately?” He quips. “I thought by now my fight or flight instincts would’ve forced my to do the exact opposite of what I’m about to do, but here we are.”
“No! I told you to run! This is none of your business!” Izuku fought back the small part of him that wanted to roll his eyes. Did Iida not understand what he said before? He guesses he’ll just have to make him understand.
“What’s a hero supposed to do when you say crap like that?” Izuku asks, clenching a fist. “I’ve got a lot to say to you, but I suppose that’ll have to wait. I can’t scold you and fight at the same time.” He jokes. “Besides, it’s like All Might said,” He puts his fists up, ready to fight. “Giving help that’s not asked for is what makes a true hero!”
The look on Stain’s face is pure insanity . Izuku breaks out into a run, dashing for Stain. The Hero Killer brandishes his sword to attack. ‘One for All...Full Cowling!’ He dips down, powered by his quirk. ‘This’ll probably be my one chance to get close!’
“Watch out!” Iida shouts, “If he cuts you..”
‘This is perfect!’ Izuku zooms past Stain, and leaps off the ground, readying a punch just as Stain whips around, sword in hand. “Five percent...Detroit Smash!” His hit lands on Stain’s head and Izuku lands on all fours, looking up immediately to see if his attack worked. He saw Stain’s head ducked down and he grinned a bit. ‘My Full Cowling works! I can fight!’ Izuku’s body feels heavy as he suddenly tumbles to the ground. ‘I can’t…! Did he graze me?!’ He looks over himself best he can and he sees a small tear in his sleeve. ‘A scratch I can’t even feel is somehow enough?!’ He looks up at Stain and sees the blood on his knife. ‘It’s the blood!’
“You lack power, but you did track my movements. You exploited my blind spot..and planned to bring me down. That’s how you moved. So many fools out there are nothing but talk...but you are worth keeping alive. Unlike these others.” Stain walks back to Iida and Izuku scrunches his eyes shut in frustration.
‘He’s wrong...I’m not, especially since I’m the least genuine hero of all...what good am I if I can’t even protect my friends?!’ He hears a grunt and feels an intense heat. His eyes open and he stares in surprise.
“Midoriya...learn how to write more specific directions. I was almost late.” Standing at the entrance of the ally was Todoroki. Izuku feels relief seeing his classmate there, but he looks at Todoroki in wonder.
“But how’d you..? And..your flames…!”
“‘How’? That’s my line. It took me a few seconds to figure it out,” He begins, ice cracking beneath his foot. “That group text to everyone with nothing but your location. Sending a totally meaningless message isn’t your style. I realized it meant ‘I’m in trouble. Help!’” His ice creates a small ramp and it sends both Izuku and the injured hero toward Todoroki and away from the fight. “Don’t worry. In just a few more minutes the pros’ll be here!” Todoroki uses his flames to attack Stain.
“Todoroki, don’t let him draw blood! I’m pretty sure he paralyzes opponents by ingesting their blood! That’s how he got us!” Izuku warns.
“Explains all the blades. So I’ve just gotta keep my distance.” Just as he finishes speaking, a knife is chucked at him, cutting his cheek.
“You’ve got some good friends...Ingenium!” Izuku watches as Todoroki and Stain fight, feeling a knot of worry in his stomach.
“Why..?” Izuku looks over at Iida. “Both of you...just stop it. I’ve inherited my brother’s name. I have to do this. He’s mine to-”
“Inherited his name? That’s weird,” Todoroki cuts in. “Because the Ingenium I know never made faces like that. Guess your family’s also got a dark side to it.”
Izuku hears the two speaking but doesn’t focus on it. He groans as he struggles to move. He needs to help! He can’t be laying on the ground paralyzed! “Todoroki…” He feels his fingers twitch and his eyes widen. His ability to move finally comes back to him as Stain slashes through Todoroki’s ice and he leaps into the air. Izuku meets him there, grabbing his scarf and dragging him across the wall.
“Midoriya!” Todoroki shouts.
“Somehow I can move again just fine!” He replies as Stain elbows his side. Izuku yelps and lets go of Stain, allowing the villain to throw Izuku off of him. Izuku grunts as he lands a few feet away from Todoroki.
“Get back, Midoriya!” Todoroki commands, creating ice to block off Stain.
Izuku coughs as he stands. “So he tasted our blood and paralyzed us, but I was the first to break free. I can think of three possible explanations. Either the effect is weaker the more people he uses it on, or it’s about how much blood he gets. Or, its effectiveness depends on blood type.”
“Blood type? I’m B.” The pro mumbles.
“And I’m A…” Iida adds.
“Blood type...hahh that’s right.” Stain confirms. Izuku straightens up a bit.
“Thought it’s not like knowing that’ll really help us…” He says, frowning.
“We need to hurry and get these two out of here...he’s quick enough to react to both my fire and ice. So I’m not seeing an opening. Until the pros get here...our best hope is to keep him at bay and keep dodging.”
Izuku nods in agreement, powering up One for All. “You’ve got too much exposed blood, Todoroki. I’ll draw his attention while you provide rear support!”
“Sounds like a pretty risky plan, but I trust you. The two of us will protect them.”
“Two-on-one huh, at least you’re not naive.” Izuku jumps, directly fighting Stain while Todoroki provided back up with his flames and ice. Their fighting mostly consists of Izuku dodging blades and trying to land punches where he can. Todoroki aids with his fire mostly, knowing it’ll do more damage. Both of them are slightly surprised when they hear Iida speak.
“Stop it...I can’t take it...I can’t watch you two shed blood for me!” Iida shouts.
“If you wanna stop this then stand up!” Todoroki shouts in response.
Izuku flips around Stain’s sword. “Stop wallowing in revenge and help us! ” He adds. He yells out as Stain makes a large gash on his arm to the point that it hurts to move it. His eyes widen when he sees Stain heading for his classmate. “Shit, Todoroki look out!”
“Be the hero he wanted you to be!” Todoroki exclaims, using his flames to make Stain dodge instead of doing a head on attack. Stain’s attack wasn’t halted though, for his blade was in front of Todoroki’s face. “Dammit!”
A blur zoomed past him and suddenly Iida was there, breaking Stain’s blade. He then kicks Stain away from Todoroki. Izuku brightens up from where he was leaning against the wall for support. “Iida!”
“So the effect faded. Bastard’s quirk ended up being no big deal, surprisingly.” Todoroki mutters.
“For wrapping you two up in something you have nothing to do with….I truly apologize.”
“Again with that?” Izuku murmured.
“And that’s why I cannot allow you two to spill any more blood.” From there, Iida and Todoroki work together to try to take down Stain. Izuku hadn’t realized, but he had been paralyzed again when Stain cut his arm. Izuku watches as Iida holds his arm out in front of Todoroki, the knife cutting his arm instead of hitting his classmate.
Izuku forces himself to try to move again, hoping the effects of the villain’s quirk wouldn’t last long. While Todoroki and Iida were fighting Stain, he was ansty. He has to help too! When he can move again, he stands up, ready to fight. ‘Round two!’ He moves his arm but cries out in pain when he does. It hurts too much to move it. ‘How am I going to be able to fight then? I normally use my arms for my punches...it’d be too much to focus on one arm only for attacking…’ His eyes drift over to Todoroki just as his classmates slams his foot down, creating a ramp of ice as he uses his other hand to freeze up Iida’s engines. ‘That’s it! I can use my legs!’ He thinks.
“Todoroki!” He calls as he and Iida leap into the air. Todoroki looks up at him as he gives the boy a grin. “Thanks for the idea!” Izuku calls as he lands a kick on Stain’s face as Iida hits his chest. They both easily land on the ground near Todoroki and the pro. Stain lands a few feet away from them, out cold.
After they defeat Stain, the pros arrive.
They're taken by surprise to see Stain was defeated by children, but they quickly take control of the situation. Todoroki takes it upon himself to carry Izuku on his back, much to the boy’s chargain. Izuku mumbles apologies and Todoroki waves him off. They follow the pros to where the cops and ambulance are. They run into Manual and Gran Torino on the way and Izuku winces as his mentor scolds him for not following directions.
Before Izuku can respond, a nomu flies overhead and grabs him. He hears everyone shouting but it’s muffled by the sound of the wind ringing in his ears. Within a few seconds he's grabbed from the nomu and pressed into the ground. He hears Stain’s voice as he speaks and he feels a chill in the air. His body tenses and he swears he recognizes the feeling. A realization dawns on him and, “F-Father..?” He whispers. His voice is laced with fear. Everything goes quiet suddenly and the chill disappears. He's too focused on the chill of the feeling to pay attention to what happens.
“Midoriya!” Todoroki exclaims, running to him. He helps Izuku up and Izuku hopes he doesn't notice how tense he is. “Midoriya?” He hears Todoroki ask, but Izuku can't find it within himself to reply right away.
“I-I’m alright...I think…” Izuku replies eventually, as Todoroki lets him lean against him. “That overwhelming sense of power and conviction...I've felt that before...from my father…” He explains, not realizing what he said.
“Your...father?” Todoroki mumbles in confusion. The others come over to them, effectively stopping Izuku from explaining himself.
With that, Izuku, Todoroki, and Iida are hauled off to the hospital to treat their wounds while Stain was taken to jail. No one will know of what truly happened except those involved. To the public, it’ll be known that Endeavor took down the Hero Killer. Izuku and his classmates won’t be reprimanded for their actions as a result, but that doesn’t stop Izuku from worrying. For the second time in his life, he can’t help but wonder, just who was his father?
Here’s the batch for today! If you’re enjoying the story, lemme know! I’d love to hear you’re thoughts!
"Where do we go now?
I thought that we were better than this
-The World Alive, Lost in the Dark"
Izuku uses his crutch to get back to his room that he shares with Todoroki and Iida. He just ended a call with Uraraka, letting her know he and the others were fine. He opens the door, seeing Iida and Todoroki sitting on their beds. He smiles at Iida when he sees him. “Hey, Iida. I just heard from Uraraka.” He doesn’t notice the look on Iida’s face.
“Midoriya…” Iida mumbles. Izuku can practically feel the temperature in the room drop.
“Iida, his...the results of his physical exam just came in.” Todoroki explains, and Izuku feels himself tense.
“It seems my left hand will have residual complications.” Izuku’s eyes widen in horror. “Both of my arms got thrashed, but it’d appear the damage is particularly severe in my left arm. They told me my ‘brachial plexus’ is impaired.” The room is full of a tense and somber atmosphere. “Actually, all it amounts to is it being hard to move my fingers, and a little numbness. There’s a chance it could heal through nerve grafting surgery.”
“Iida…” Izuku whispers.
“When I found the Hero Killer, I became incapable of rational thought. I should have contacted Mr. Manual first. I hate that bastard, but what he said was the truth. That’s why, until I can became a true hero, I think I’ll leave my left hand like this.”
‘I should’ve pressed him more that time...maybe if I had done more…’ Izuku thinks, biting his lip. ‘No, I can’t dwell on that. Don’t be selfish. He already gets it.’ “Iida, I’m the same as you.” He says instead, holding out his right hand. He uses his crutches to walk towards his classmate, and holds out his fist. “Together...let’s become stronger.” Iida gives him a smile.
“I’m uh...I’m sorry.” Todoroki cuts in, frowning. Izuku and Iida looks over to their friend.
“I feel like whenever I’m involved...someone’s hand gets messed up.” Todoroki mumbles, frowning. Without being able to stop themselves, Izuku and Iida burst out into laughter.
“I guess even Todoroki can crack a joke now and then!”
“I’m being serious you guys, it’s like I’m cursed...maybe I’m the...hand crusher…”
Izuku and Iida’s laughter is uncontrollable. In moments like this, Izuku can easily convince himself he had a place among his wonderful, wonderful friends.
“Midoriya, are you awake?” Todoroki’s voice is soft as he asks his friend if he was awake. Iida had left earlier in the day, leaving the two of them. Izuku doesn’t have the heart to ignore him, so he rolls himself over to face Todoroki.
“Yeah,” He replies, “What’s up?”
“I’ve been thinking...about when Stain saved you from that nomu. You said something that’s been bothering me."
Izuku feels a spike of panic shoot up his spine. What was Todoroki talking about? Did he say something bad? “W-What do you mean?” He asked, trying to stop his voice from shaking.
Todoroki glances at him, not saying anything immediately. It was as if he was trying to choose his words carefully. “The vibe we got from Stain, you said your father had that same vibe.” He eventually says and Izuku wants to kick himself. Of course Todoroki wouldn’t let something like that go. “Combining that with what you told me at the Sports Festival…” He pauses and Izuku feels like his panic rise.
“I have to prove myself to him!”
“I know how it feels to deny who you are!”
“Heh, we all have our own demons.”
The words he spoke to Todoroki he thought were meaningless were now coming back, as if they wanted to haunt him.
“There’s something going on that you aren’t telling us, isn’t there?” Izuku bites his lip, trying to think of a way to get himself out of this. How can he get Todoroki off his trail without outing himself? He doubts that his father would be very happy if he finds out that Todoroki knows. He can’t let that happen! Izuku opens his mouth to wipe away his classmate’s concerns but stops himself. Will it really be a bad thing if Todoroki finds out? He’s been keeping this burden all to himself, trying to uncover who his father really is while still trying to please him. Maybe it would help to have people in his corner. That thought makes him pause. Will anyone really be in his corner if they find out what he caused? He almost forgot that the USJ attack was because of him, because he gave his father that information. How can anyone stand by him if he’s so clearly a traitor?
Shaking his head, Izuku frowns. “I wouldn’t dwell on it too much, Todoroki. I-I think what I was talking about was a moment from when I was younger.” He lies. “And I was kinda running on adrenaline and I was also delirious from the blood loss! I wouldn’t take anything I said too seriously haha…” Izuku explains, feeling an ache in his chest.
Todoroki narrows his eyes. “There was fear in your eyes, Midoriya.” He states. “That type of fear...you’ve never had that look in your eyes, not even at the USJ.”
Izuku winces at the mention of the USJ. He didn’t think about that, forgetting that he had also been running on adrenaline and the pain from his injuries that time too. “Listen…” He mumbles, rattling his brain for any excuse. He directs his eyes at the ground, unsure of what to say. “Whatever you heard me say, just forget it, alright? I wasn’t thinking clearly and I didn’t mean it.” He looks up and sees the disbelief in Todoroki’s eyes and waits for him to pry further. The minutes pass silently and all that can be heard is the ticking of the clock.
However, he sighs softly and nods. “Alright.” He finally says, eyes softening. “You don’t have to shoulder whatever is happening alone, though, Midoriya.” Todoroki adds, and Izuku feels his heart melt for some reason. “I’m your friend, after all. Aren’t friends supposed to do? Help each other?”
Izuku is overcome with the sudden urge to cry. He can feel the tears pooling in his eyes as he tries to hold them back. “Yeah.” He says. “Yeah, they do.”
He can see the understanding in Todoroki’s eyes and hates himself for it because he doesn’t deserve it.
Both Izuku and Todoroki were healed by the time everyone returned to school. Bakugou was teased by their classmates thanks to his hair, while Asui talked about her internship. Kaminari put Izuku, Todoroki and Iida in the spotlight by talking about the Hero Killer, which reminded Izuk that he forgot to talk to his father about what happened. Before much more conversation could be made, All Might came into the room and told everyone to get into their hero costumes. He wanted to run through some training with them.
“Right on the heels of all your workplace experience, this time we’ll mix in an element of play, it’s a rescue training race!” All Might explains and Izuku can feel his excitement building.
“If it’s rescue training, then should it be carried out at the USJ?!” Iida exclaims, throwing his hand up.
“That place is for disaster rescue!” All Might replied. “This is playing ground Gamma! Where densely packed lanes make this construction site seem more like a complex labyrinth! Make four groups of five! We’ll do the training one group at a time!”
Izuku finds himself in a group with Ojiro, Iida, Ashido, and Sero. Out of everyone, Sero has the most chance of winning. His quirk is perfect for this type of terrain, Ojiro’s too. Iida, Ashido, and Izuku himself have to be careful about keeping their balance.
“When I’ve given the distress signal somewhere in the area, you all start simultaneously from outside the limits! This is a competition to see who can come to my aid first! Starting group, take your positions!” Everyone waits, Izuku feeling the anticipation. “START!” All Might shouts and Izuku takes off. He sees everyone get ahead of him as he powers up One for All, and leaps . He flies past Sero, jumping on the pipes to keep himself in the air. He passes by Ashido and Ojiro as well, a grin on his face. ‘I can do this! Maintain your composure, your nerves, without pause!’ He sticks his landing on the last pipe, Sero just managing to get past him. He gets there a second before Izuku does and Izuku feels proud of himself.
“Young Sero was first, but all of you have learned how to use your quirks more broadly since you first entered U.A! Now keep at it, and begin preparing for the end of the term test!”
Izuku’s eyes widen at the mention at the end of the term and it takes him by surprise. A lot of time has passed since the start of the school year, huh?
“You surprised me! I almost didn’t recognize you, my boy!” All Might whispers to him, and Izuku feels his chest warm at the praise. He looks at his teacher and sees the man giving him a thumbs up. “When this lesson is over, meet me in the lounge.”
“Uh, yeah, okay.” Izuku agrees, and feels panicked. He wasn’t sure why he was so panicked, it was All Might! He has a bad feeling for some reason. What could All Might have to talk to him about?
“I have something I need to talk to you about. The story of me and One for All.”
Izuku pokes his head into the room, looking for his teacher. “All Might?” He calls, not seeing the man. ‘I wonder what he wants to talk about...I’m kinda worried.’
“Come on in my boy!” All Might calls from somewhere in the room. “Lock the door, would you?” Izuku enters and locks the door. He sits down the couch, eyes trailing around the room. All Might walks over to him a few minutes later, holding a tray. “Tea?” He asks and Izuku nods. All Might hands him a cup and sits down. “You’ve been through a lot. I’m sorry I couldn’t be there to help you.” The man begins and Izuku stares at his hero in surprise.
“N-No, All Might, you don’t need to apologize!” Izuku exclaims hurriedly. He of all people doesn’t deserve apologies. Especially not from All Might. The room falls silent and Izuku isn’t sure what to say, he’s not used to someone caring about his well being. He can see the way All Might feels guilty. It’s all in his posture, how his shoulders are hunched, the way he’s clenching his fists together. It’s the most obvious in his eyes. People always say the eyes are a window to the soul, after all. “But before that um…” He starts to say because he isn’t sure what else to say, “What’s this about the story of One for All?” He questions.
“I heard you got your blood licked by the Hero Killer.” All Might says.
“Oh, right,” Izuku perks up a bit, “It was a quirk who could rob the freedom of those whose blood he ingested.”
“Do you remember what I told you when I gave you this quirk?” All Might questions and Izuku thinks.
“You mentioned something about getting the quirk through your DNA—“ He cuts himself off, eyes widening in horror. “Does that mean I accidentally gave the Hero Killer One for All?!” He shrieks in horror.
All Mights waves his hands dismissively, hoping to quell the boy’s panic. “No, no!” He exclaims. “I just thought you’d be worried about it, but I guess you forgot about it.” All Might chuckles. “One for All won’t transfer to someone else unless it’s holder wishes it. It can’t forcibly be taken, but it can be forcibly passed on, kind of like a girl giving chocolates forcefully to her crush.”
“That makes sense.” Izuku mumbles, feeling the tension leave his body.
“It’s a special quirk, and the same goes for its origin. One for All is derived from a separate quirk which has existed from the beginning. ‘All for One’, it robs others of their quirks and renders them quirkless while giving the holder of All for One the power of the quirk they stole. It’s also a quirk that can grant them to others.”
Izuku feels a shiver go down his spine but he isn’t quite sure why.
“It started at the dawn of the phenomenon when society hadn’t adapted to the shift. There was a time when the norm for what it meant to be human crumbled away. That’s all it took. The law lost all meaning, and the advance of civilization came to a halt, spiraling down into all out devastation. During that age of upheaval, rose a figure who promptly gathered the people together. You must have heard of him, too.”
Izuku in fact, has never heard of a man like that.
“He stole people’s quirks and through his overwhelming power, his influence spread. He moved the people, his pawns, according to his plans and piled up malicious deeds to his satisfaction. He tried to take control of Japan in the blink of an eye as its evil ruler.”
Izuku suddenly realizes something. Through all of the research he’s been doing, there had articles and theories supporting the very thing All Might is now telling him. There is another player, controlling the moves of other villains, like pawns on a chessboard. “The rumors all the time surfing the net weren’t just rumors, were they?” He asks.
All Might shakes his head. “The dealings of the underworld thugs and yakuza aren’t really well known, so it’s up to the internet to fill in the gaps. People with power want a place they can use it, after all.”
“How is that connected to the story of One for All?” Izuku asks, confused.
“I told you, didn’t I? All for One can also grant quirks. Either he placed his trust in those granted quirks, or they were meant to make submit to his will. Only...the bodies of those whom he granted quirks couldn’t handle the strain, and many of them became virtual dolls without speech. Just like the nomu…” Izuku’s eyes widen and All Might lets his words sink in. Izuku’s thoughts spiral, thinking about the nomu, Shigaraki, even his father. He’s more suspicious of the man more than he had been before. There’s definitely some sort of connection here, he knows that!
“On the other hand...among those who were granted quirks, there were also cases where their quirks mutated and blended together. The man had a quirkless little brother. The little brother was small, and frail, but he harbored a strong sense of justice. His brother’s actions panged his heart, and he opposed him. The man forced a quirk that stockpiles power upon his little brother and whether it was out of kindness or to bend him to his will, we still don’t know.
“No way…” Izuku mumbles.
“Yes,” All Might nods, “He who was thought quirkless, did in fact possess one prior. Though neither he himself nor anyone around him had never noticed. The brother’s quirk was one that allowed it to be passed to another, and so the quirk to stockpile power and the quirk that could pass itself on, merged together! That is the origin of One for All!” All Might exclaims, throwing his arms out. A few minutes pass in silence, Izuku taking in the information. For some reason, his shoulders felt heavy.
“It’s pretty ironic,” All Might says, “Justice is always born from the bowels of evil."
“W-Wait, hold on! I um...I understand how it was born, but...about that bad guy...how could he still be…?” Izuku trails off, going quiet.
“He’s a man who can steal quirks, remember? Meaning, anything goes. A quirk that stops his ageing, he must’ve stolen himself in that general category. He’s a symbol of evil that will live on indefinitely...and the gap in between him and his brother admitted no chance of toppling him, not to mention the state of society at the time….the brother who suffered defeat decided to entrust it to the next generation. Though he couldn’t defeat him then...his power would accumulate, little by little...and someday become able to stop his evil once and for all.” All Might pauses. “And I was the successor to finally beat him! Or...so I thought...but he’s still alive, and on the move once again, this time as the brain behind the League of Villains!”
Izuku feels himself tense. He doesn’t want to think about what weight that sentence holds, because if he starts to over analyze that sentence, he may find the truth about who his father really is. During the conversation, he has his suspicions, but he oh so dearly wants to be wrong, but there’s too many connections, like the nomu, and Shigaraki, and Izuku has heard his father talk to Shigaraki about plans for the League, but he doesn’t want to believe it! He can’t!
“Young Midoriya?” All Might asks, softly. Hearing the man’s voice snaps him from his thoughts.
“Ah, sorry…” Izuku weakly apologizes.
“Are you alright?” The man asks once again, and Izuku wants to so desperately tell him the truth. He’s tired of keeping such secrets, especially if his father is who he thinks he is. He can’t keep carrying these burdens alone anymore. He doesn’t want to, but a small voice in the back of his head keeps reminding him that if he opens his mouth and tells, he’ll have to leave. He won’t be accepted at a hero school when he’s not just the son of a villain, but no better than a villain himself.
“I’m ah...I’m fine.” Izuku lies. “I have to go, but thank you for telling me this, All Might.” He hurriedly stands from his seat and leaves the room, not giving All Might a chance to call him back.
Izuku leaves the room feeling a lot heavier than he did when entering.
“I wonder if Izuku can fulfill the task I’ve set for him…” All for One drawls, a hand on his chin.
“I think things will proceed quicker if you step in now, Sensei.”
All for One lets out a chuckle. “If that’s so, then patch me up faster, doctor.” He replies. “If only I could lay my hands on super regeneration five years sooner! It was a disappointment of a quirk, meaningless after my wounds heal. It’s fine though, I’ll let him do the hard work while mastering his power. After all, the child was born to fulfill my destiny.” He grins. ‘You’d do well to rejoice in this farce, this transient peace while you still can, All Might.’
"Kept searching for the right moment
When you just have to live in it
-The World Alive, Dreamer"
Izuku is thankful for the distraction of final exams, more thankful than he thought he’d be. After talking with All Might, Izuku is stuck in denial. He’s been stuck in it for at least two weeks now. He didn’t want to believe that his father was such a large scale villain, especially one that even All Might couldn’t take down. The very thought is terrifying, but there was so much evidence pointing at his father. He knows there’s a connection between Shigaraki, the League of Villains, the nomu, and his father.
What if his father was just aiding All for One? He specializes in studying quirks after all, so it makes sense, but part of Izuku is skeptical. His mind is muddled and he doesn’t know what to do with the information he learned from All Might.
“Midoriya!” Iida’s voice snaps him from his thoughts, and Izuku looks over at his friend. “You seemed lost in thought. Are you alright?” He asks.
“Uh, yeah, I’m fine. Did I miss anything?” Izuku questions, hoping he didn’t miss anything important.
“Mr. Aizawa just finished telling us our partners. You’re paired up with Bakugou for the final, and you’re fighting All Might.”
Oh, right, final exams. Izuku isn’t sure how to feel about being partnered with Bakugou. He knows their relationship is bad. Years of torment and belittling tended to do that, and he knows the fact that neither of them speaking about what happened during their first training exercise doesn’t help that either. He glances over at Bakugou, seeing the boy glaring daggers at the ground. ‘Seems like he isn’t happy about this either.’ They were going against All Might, too. If Izuku doesn’t know what to think about being partnered with Bakugou, he definitely doesn’t know what to think about fighting All Might.
With a clouded mind, Izuku follows his classmates to where they’d be boarding the buses for their final exam.
Shouto isn’t quite sure what to make of his predicament. On the one hand, he was working with Uraraka and fighting Aizawa, but on the other, he has an epiphany because of the girl. Of course, said epiphany happens after they restrain Aizawa (Shouto was able to grab onto the end of Aizawa’s scarf and Uraraka made him float. Obviously, he wasn’t floating for very long since he took away her quirk. Since Aizawa’s attention wasn’t on Shouto, he was able to trap him in ice).
Once they pass, Shouto approaches the girl. “Uraraka, can I ask you something?” He questions.
Uraraka pauses mid step and turns to look at him. “Sure, Todoroki!” She chirps with a small smile. She follows him a few feet away from the viewing area.
“I have a question about Midoriya,” He begins. Ever since the incident with Stain, he’s been worried. He knows Midoriya doesn’t want to talk about whatever it is that’s going on, but something's telling him to pry. His gut is telling him to get involved, and just like Midoriya did for him, he wants to help. However, social situations were never his strong suit thanks to his father, so he isn’t sure how to proceed. “Have you noticed anything off about him lately?”
Uraraka’s smile falls from her face and she looks crestfallen. “You’ve noticed it too, huh?” She asks softly. “He’s been more in his head lately, right?” She questions and Shouto nods his head. “There’s definitely something bothering him, and Iida and I have tried asking him about it since we got back from the internships, but he doesn’t wanna talk.” Uraraka sighs.
So Shouto hasn’t been the only one Midoriya’s denied, huh? It was quite the frustrating situation. Didn’t Midoriya see that his friends just want to help him? They’re all worried, Shouto included. He feels like there’s this wall between him and Midoriya, and it’s beginning to eat away at Shouto. “I’m worried.” Shouto blurts out, surprising himself. “I want to help him but he won’t let me. It’s frustrating.” Realizing the depth of his surprise over his own frustration, he’s caught off guard by seeing that same look of surprise and confusion written on her face.
Ochako raises her brows in worry and confusion. However, her eyes hold understanding, yet she’s still surprised by Todoroki suddenly blurting out what he was thinking. He was generally more conservative when it came to what he was feeling and thinking. Yet in this instance, he seemed confused and unsure unlike his usual composed self. That’s when the realization dawns on her, that the feeling she’s had since the Sports Festival was right all along. She’s always noticed the way Todoroki and Midoriya acted after the festival. It was as if there was an understanding between the two of them, that only they knew about, one no one else was allowed to know. She always had her suspicions, but none of them had been confirmed fully until this point. “Todoroki...where is all of this coming from suddenly?” She asks. Just as she’s about to ask a follow up question, she pauses.
Did she really have the right to ask the next question? Was it even any of her business? Ochako shakes her head slightly, ‘This is to help Deku and Todoroki!’ She thinks, trying to convince herself. This question had to be asked if she wanted to help her friends. She takes a breath and asks, “I know you and Deku are friends, but I’m getting a different vibe from this.”
Shouto tilts his head to the side in confusion. “What do you mean?” He questions.
Uraraka glances around the two, as if trying to see if anyone is listening in on their conversation. “It sounds to me like you have a crush on him.” She admits and Shouto freezes.
Does he have a crush on Midoriya?
He finds himself thinking back to when he was sitting in the waiting room after fighting Midoriya for the first time. He thinks about when he was staring at his left hand, thoughts of admiration swirling through his mind. He had wondered back then if Midoriya had always been like that, charging headfirst into other people’s problems. He then thinks about when he received Midoriya’s text with his location that fateful night in Hosu. He remembers the worry shooting through him at the sight of nothing but a location, and the relief at seeing Midoriya alive and okay.
Ochako giggles at the sight of the emotions crossing his face, especially his eyes. It was something so un-Todoroki like. “Oh my god you do. It’s all in your eyes!” She giggles again. “I always suspected you and Deku liked each other, especially after the Sports Festival, but I wasn’t so sure, now I totally am.” She says, smiling.
“Is it...that obvious?” Shouto asks. ‘How did I not notice?’ He thinks, surprised. What Uraraka said is putting a lot of things into perspective, he’s never really looked at Midoriya as ‘just a friend’. There’s always been something more. He’s always admired Midoriya for his strength, but maybe subconsciously, it wasn’t just admiration. Uraraka pointing out his crush made him realize that. “Do you think Midoriya knows?”
“Not quite, like I said, it’s all in your eyes. I don’t think Deku’s aware of it,” Uraraka responds. “Your reaction is sweet though,” She says suddenly, “It shows how much you care about him. From the bits and pieces I’ve gotten from Deku, it seems like he’s never really had people to support him.” The smile is gone from her face and Shouto nods. He gets that impression too, from the way that Midoriya spoke to him before their fight in the Sports Festival. Midoriya had mentioned something about false hope and things working out when he was speaking to him. There was also the way that Midoriya looked surprised when Shouto confronted him in the hospital.
“Thanks, Uraraka. Sorry for taking up your time.” Shouto says, apologizing.
“We’re friends, Todoroki! You’ll never take up my time!” Uraraka replies, giving him a smile, slipping back into her cheery attitude.
Shouto finds himself giving her a small smile in reply and he realizes this is all thanks to Midoriya. He was able to open up because Midoriya got him out of his head and made him wake up. He stopped looking at everyone as competition and started looking at them as classmates, friends even. It makes his resolve to help Midoriya even stronger.
Katsuki is many things, but blind isn’t one of them. He notices things about other people in the class. He notices how Kirishima likes to stick by him, how Kaminari likes to complain about a lot, Ashido’s horns are in fact not fake, and so on. However, the one he notices the most about is Deku. He takes note of how one second he can be an insecure little shit, but the next? He can be a confident, challenging opponent. Katsuki learned that much from their match in the beginning of the year.
The match is still fresh in his mind, even after all of these months. The things Deku said to him, he still thinks about. At first he tried to push them aside, not deeming them important or worth his time. Regardless, the echoes stay. He finds himself thinking about Deku and their past, and everything in between, which led him to observing the nerd in class.
For one thing, he notices how awkward Deku is in class, the way he looks confused when Glasses or Uraraka ask him if he needs help with something. He also notices the way All Might interacts with him and Katsuki knows something is up. He just isn’t sure of what it is. It annoys him, so he keeps observing, and when he’s paired up with Deku for his final against All Might, he’s pissed. Teaming up with Deku means acknowledging things he wants to continue ignoring, but now he can’t.
The bus ride to the area they’d be fighting in was tense, to say the least. Katsuki sat in a different section than Deku, neither speaking to each other. When they arrive at the area, Katsui steps off first, Deku and All Might following behind.
“By “fighting” you mean beating you, right?” Deku asks.
“Yup, I’ll explain it all now!” All Might says cheerfully. Katsuki tunes in and out as All Might explains how the finals will go. He picks up on the cuffs that’ll limit his quirk, and thinking of the teachers as villains, so if they feel the gap in power is too strong, they can run, but the cuffs are there to give them a fighting chance.
“Heh, all that just to let us consider fighting? You’re looking down me.” Katsuki says, narrowing his eyes.
All Might lets out a good natured laugh still grinning as he replies, “I wonder!” All Might glances at the clock telling them how much time they have. “Annnnnnd go!” He shouts and Katsuki takes off. He can hear the nerd following him and he feels irritated. “Don’t follow me!” He shouts as he takes off deeper into the city.
“We have to stick together!” Deku shouts back, still following him.
Katsuki growls, “I don’t need your damn help! I’m gonna knock him out on my own!”
“That’s not the right way to go! We should avoid battle at any cost!” Deku snaps, catching up to him.
“Shut up! That’s why I’ll lead him around by the nose until the final moments, and then I’ll smash him when he’s tuckered out!” Katsuki exclaims loudly. He hears Deku go quiet and he continues walking. He doesn’t need the nerd’s help! He’s capable of doing this on his own! He doesn’t need the nerd looking down on him!
“Ever since we were kids, I’ve looked up to you, but you never deserved it!” Katsuki growls to himself, clenching his fists. He can’t be thinking about that right now! He couldn’t afford distractions!
“Just who do you think All Might is? No matter the number of handicaps, the idea that you’d beat him by yourself is just…” Katsuki doesn’t give him the chance to finish speaking, he whirls around, intent on hitting Deku right in the face. He doesn’t get the chance. Deku catches his fist, holding it tightly while glaring at him. “Bakugou, listen to me-”
“Not another goddamn word.” Katsuki hisses. “Just cuz you’re doing halfway decent don’t you dare say another word. Or else I’ll get pissed.”
“I’m telling you so we can pass the test! Just listen!”
“I TOLD YOU I DON’T NEED ANY HELP FROM YOU TO PASS ASSHOLE!” Katsuki shouts, his frustration boiling. He doesn’t need Deku’s help!
‘Yes you do,’ A small voice cries but he ignores it. ’You need Izuku’s help to pass, stop being stubborn.’
“WOULD YOU STOP YELLING?! THIS IS WHY WE CAN’T HAVE A PROPER CONVERSATION DAMMIT!” Deku yells and for the first time since their fight in the beginning of the year, Katsuki can hear the frustration in his voice. Before he can say anything else, there’s a loud boom and debris is flying toward them.
“Now then, brace yourselves! For here I come!” All Might exclaims. “If you’re thinking of this as just a test, then you’re in for a world of pain. I am a villain , oh heroes come at me and put your whole hearts into it!” All Might charges for them and Katsuki holds out his arm.
“Bakugou, we have to move!” Deku shouts.
“Don’t order me around!” Katsuki yells, shooting off an attack.
“You don’t need to tell me! That was my plan-” Katsuki’s cut off as All Might grabs his face. Katsuki holds out his arm again and fires off an explosion in All Might’s face. All Might grabs his arm and flips him over, causing Katsuki to land harshly on the ground.
“A feeble flurry like that barely hurt me at all!” All Might exclaims and the wind is knocked out of Katsuki. He hears All Might talking to Deku, his back to Katsuki. It gives him enough time to get up and into the air with his explosions. However, just as he’s in the air, Deku uses his quirk to jump up, and they’re toppling into each other. Katsuki lands on his feet, and immediately charges.
“I’m telling you! There’s no way you can win just hitting him up front! Can’t you see?!”
“Shut up. I’ll win, because that’s what a hero does.” Katsuki feels a hand on his arm.
“Then that’s all the more reason this battle is-”
“Let go of me, don’t touch me!” Katsuki exclaims, shoving Deku off.
“For the time being,” All Might suddenly shouts from above and both him and Deku look up. The hero holds a guardrail and traps Deku with it. “A present for the boy who would run!” Katsuki sees a panicked look in Deku’s eyes, but can’t dwell on it for long, for All Might punches him right in the gut. Katsuki lays on the ground, coughing as All Might start talking.
“I understand it’s because of young Midoriya’s sudden growth, is it not?” If only All Might knew. Katsuki isn’t pissed just because of Deku’s strength, no. It’s because if what Deku said that day is true, he’s been in the wrong this whole time, and Katsuki can’t handle that. “But you know, if you compare someone at level one to someone at level fifty, then the pace at which they grow can’t be totally even, now can it? What you’re doing, it’s such a waste, young Bakugou! Don’t you get it? You can still grow so much! But what needs to grow isn’t your strength …”
“Shut your mouth, All Might!” Katsuki shouts, not wanting to hear what he knows is true outloud. “If I ever need to borrow that piddly little ass ‘strength’ then it’d be better to lose altogether.” He hisses.
All Might looks down at him, “Is that so…” He raises his arm, “Then don’t regret this.” Before All Might can land his hit, Katsuki feels a punch to the cheek.
“Dammit, don’t you dare say you’d rather lose, you of all people!” Deku exclaims, angrily. He grabs Katsuki and takes off.
“Let me go you ass!”
“Shut the hell up! I’m trying to help you, a ‘thank you’ would be nice y’know, jerk!” Deku replies as he runs through the city. Katsuki doesn’t say anything in reply. “I can’t think of a way to beat All Might, and I can’t think of a way to escape him either! But why don’t you try working with me before giving up?!” Katsuki looks over at him, scowling. “Aren’t you the one who never gives up on winning?!”
Katsuki doesn’t reply. Deku eventually sets him down and the two catch their breaths. He finds himself thinking about back when they were children, and proper friends.
“Kacchan! Are you alright?!”
A hand had been held out to him, but he didn’t accept it. He pushed it away, and tore its owner down.
“You’re just a quirkless wannabe!”
Katsuki grumbles quietly, and looks up at Deku. Deku looks at him and frowns. “Are you willing to listen to me now? I know you hate my guts and all, but we need a strategy to pass this test.”
Katsuki sighs, and scowls. The nerd never had been looking down on him, had he? “What’s the plan, Deku?”
Katsuki sneaks up on All Might from behind, catching his attention, “WHERE ARE YOU LOOKING?!” All Might turns around to face him.
“An attack from behind eh?” All Might observes.
“DEKU! FIRE!” Katsuki shouts once more and Deku appears from the other side of All Might, using the smoke to cover him. He pulls the pin on Katsuki’s glove and fires off a blast. It gives them an opening.
“Alright!” Deku cheers.
“Run dumbass!” Katsuki exclaims and the two break out into a run. They continue to run, panting.
Deku calls out when they see the gate. “We’re almost there! If even just one of us passes through then we clear the exam!” He steals a glance from behind and looks back to Katsuki. “I don’t see All Might chasing after us...there’s no way he could’ve fainted, is there?”
“No, you dumbass, you’re the one who said there’s no way we could beat his ass, the fuck are you saying now? There isn’t a chance in hell that love tap made him kick it!” He glances behind them once more, and then at the gate. “If he catches up to us then I’ll launch you using my bracer!”
“Hmm, I see! And? Then what?” Both Katsuki and Deku’s eyes widen when they see All Might running between them. Katsuki shoots his arm out, planning on attacking. All Might breaks his gauntlet. “Why so surprised?”
“He’s too fast!” Deku shouts.
“Oh? But thanks to these cuffs this isn’t close to my top gear, I hope you know? Now...bite the dust, ‘heroes’!” All Might says, grabbing Izuku by the arm as he shoves Katsuki down. “Shall I bury you, then?”
‘That blistering speed, and that stamina, that power! He’s OP! He’s pure and simple strength!’ Katsuki groans as All Might keeps him down with his foot.
“Using your maximum power flame to repel me away while slipping off to the escape gate, it seems that was your response, you’re answer. However, your maximum flame’s gone. It’s the end of the line!"
“Shut up!” Katsuki hisses, using his explosions to push All Might off of him. He pushes himself up, wincing at the pain. He grabs Deku’s arm. “I’m flinging you.” He tells the boy.
“It won’t be smooth but with the strength gap between us and him now, once again, there’s no other way to win!”
“Wait, you can’t mean--”
Deku flies through the sky, and All Might goes after him. Katsuki clicks his tongue in irritation. He uses his explosions to go after them. “The bracer is to fire off my maximum power flame with no risk, but I was an idiot.” He holds his hands out. “There was no way I could ever beat your ass without taking any risks.” He fires off his most powerful explosion, blowing All Might away. “GO DEKU!” He runs to stand in front of Deku, planning on distracting All Might from him. “GO QUICK, RUN! BE USEFUL DAMN DEKU!” He roars, firing off another explosion.
All Might goes for Deku again, but Katsuki puts himself in the way. All Might slams him into the ground. “Sleep, young Bakugou, and put those self wrecking ways of yours to sleep, too. Personally, as your teacher, I’m afraid this is a little traumatic.” Katsuki grabs All Might’s wrist, hand shaking.
“Quick, go you fucking nerd! If I bend and fold and choose to twist myself into a pretzel to win, then I’ll never forgive you if you lose!” He exclaims, and Deku charges for All Might, punching him. That’s the last thing he sees before blacking out.
Izuku grabs Bakugou, noting the boy is out cold and dashes to the escape gate. The bell dings as they make it through. He falls onto the ground after laying Bakugou down, panting. He looks over at the unconscious boy and sighs.
There’s a lot they have to talk about at a later date, it seems.
When Izuku returns home later that day, he can feel the atmosphere of the house. It’s heavy and full of tension. Feeling confusion, he walks further into the house, looking around. He sees nothing out of the ordinary, there’s no one in the living room, nor the kitchen. He passes by his room and sees nothing weird. He doesn’t realize anything until he sees his father’s door open slightly, and hears someone talking from the inside.
“Father?” He calls out quietly, and the voice stops. Izuku feels himself tense up and he briefly wonders if he’s interrupted something important.
“‘Zuku,” The voice from before says, the door opening to reveal Shigaraki.
“Ah, Sh-Shigaraki!” Izuku stammers, looking up at the male. The last time they had seen each other was when Izuku punched him at the USJ, and he doubted Shigaraki would be very happy to see him.
“Perfect timing, Izuku,” His father states, using his wheelchair to wheel over to the door.
‘That’s right, father is in a wheelchair. There’s no way he could be such a terrifying villain like All for One.’ Izuku finds himself thinking. “What’s going on, father?” He asks.
“Maybe you could help Tomura see the error he’s made.” Is all his father says, nodding towards Shigaraki.
Shigaraki sighs and looks down at Izuku. “Let’s have a chat, Zuku.” Shigaraki says, and Izuku finds himself following him to the living room. Izuku’s relationship with Shigaraki is...odd to say the least. It’s not like they hate each other, but there are times where they don’t get along very well.
“What do you want to talk about..?” Izuku asks once they’re seated and Shigaraki sighs once more.
“To tell the truth, I hate mostly everything, but the number one thing that’s pissing me off right now is the Hero Killer.” Shigaraki begins and Izuku feels himself tense.
“But...isn’t he with you guys?” Izuku questions.
“I never agreed to him joining, but he’s one of us according to society, and that’s the problem. Near everybody seems to be crazy over the Hero Killer. The U.A. invasion and the nomus we released in Hosu...all of it’s been swallowed up by that bastard’s fame. Why is nobody looking at me? No matter how much he puffed himself up, in the end, he was just destroying what he didn’t like, same as me. Between the two of us, what do you think is the difference, Zuku?” Shigaraki questions, turning to look at Izuku.
“What’s the difference between you two?” Izuku murmurs, thinking. “With the Hero Killer...I didn’t accept him, but I do understand him...for both me and him, we started out by watching All Might. Back then, I was saved by him...at the very least, he didn’t destroy because he wanted to. His methods were wrong, but he tried to live according to an ideal...he had conviction , that’s what I think.” Izuku explains and Shigaraki suddenly grins.
“Ahhh, it all makes sense now!” He exclaims. “My head is a lot clearer thanks to you, Zuku!” Shigaraki laughs, and Izuku feels fear fill him. It’s a fear he’s felt before, at the USJ, while fighting Stain, and even...in front of his father. “Man, I can’t wait until you leave U.A! It’ll be helpful to have you be our brains! I wish Sensei would let me interrupt your mission, but that’s fine. Your mission is almost over anyways!” Shigaraki chuckles, standing up.
Izuku’s breath catches in his throat as Shigaraki continues talking and walking. ‘Interrupt my mission…?’ He thinks. ‘Almost...over?’ Does that mean he...he’ll have to leave U.A.? He knows his father only sent him there because he wanted information, he’s known since the beginning. However, Izuku never liked thinking about it, but now with Shigaraki telling him his ‘mission’ is almost over, reality sets in. His father really is just using him, isn’t he? He hates the feeling of realizing it, all of his hopes being flushed down the drain. He doesn’t notice Shigaraki leaving the room, he’s too lost in his head. He doesn’t want to leave U.A., he was finally getting used to school and his classmates, and being All Might’s successor.
‘Villains don’t belong at a school for heroes.’ He wasn’t a villain though! ‘Think about the things you’re doing, getting information on your classmates quirks for your father, lying to everyone, especially All Might. That’s what villains do.’ Izuku shakes his head. He wasn’t a villain, he didn’t want to be one! ‘You have a villains blood running through your veins, did you really ever think you could be a hero?’ Sniffling, Izuku feels tears begin to pool in his eyes. Not wanting to alert his father of anything (not that the man would probably care) he picks himself up from the couch and goes to his room. This is it, isn’t it? He’s destined to become a villain. Izuku falls first into his bed.
“You can become a hero!” All Might’s words ring in his head. Thinking about the hero, Izuku finds himself reaching for his phone and dialing his number before he can think. “Young Midoriya?”
“A-All Might…” Izuku murmurs, sniffling more. “I’m sorry.” He’s sorry that he’s failed his mentor, that he won’t be able to continue to carry the mantle All Might passed on to him.
“What’s wrong my boy? Why are you apologizing?” All Might asks, and Izuku can hear the worry in his voice. Part of him feels guilty for making the man so worried, but he also craves the comfort he’s been denied all of his life.
“I...I failed you…” Izuku cries softly, putting his free hand to his eye. He uses the palm of his hand to put pressure on his eye as he cries.
“Oh...Midoriya...you haven’t failed me! Did you forget what we talked about during the Sports Festival?” All Might asks. His voice is soft and comforting, and it makes Izuku sob.
“Y-You don’t understand!” He cries, “I messed up, All Might. I m-messed up really bad, and I fa-failed you!” Izuku wishes he could make All Might understand that he’s probably about to lose everything, but if he told his hero, he’d lose the only fathe-mentor he’s ever had!
“Help me understand then, young Midoriya. Let me help my boy, please.” All Might pleads.
Izuku takes a breath, trying to control his sobs. “I-I’m sorry, I’m s-so sorry, A-All Might.” He apologizes through his cries. All Might asks Izuku what’s going on multiple times, but the boy just keeps crying and apologizing. All Might eventually falls quiet.
The night carries on like this, All Might worrying more and more about his boy. He resolves to let Izuku cry, wishing he could be there to comfort the boy. When Izuku stops crying, all he asks the boy is if he’s alright, and nothing more. He doubts Izuku wants to talk, judging by the way he didn’t answer his questions. He stays on the phone with Izuku until the boy falls asleep. Once he does, he whispers a soft good night.
"Can't remember when I felt alive
Illusions took hold
-The World Alive, Dreamer"
“We’re cancelling the stay at the lodge we’ve been using every year. Our new destination won’t be revealed until the day it starts.” Aizawa says, standing in front of his class. Izuku blinks as he listens to his teacher, surprised like the rest of his class. As his classmates begin talking, Izuku finds himself getting lost in his head. He’s been doing that a lot lately. He thinks about the League, Shigaraki, his father, his ‘mission’. Part of him feels numb, but another part of him is aching. He doesn’t want to leave U.A., his class. The thought makes him pause. Was he ever really apart of the class though? Izuku was more of an observer, looking in and gathering information that his father needed.
“Midoriya,” Todoroki’s voice snaps him out of his trance.
“Eh?” Izuku asks, looking over at him. Why is he standing up? Wasn’t Aizawa speaking to the class?
“Everyone’s heading to lunch, Mr. Aizawa finished his announcement.” Todoroki replies. “As for why I’m standing, I didn’t want you to get left behind.” Izuku looks at him in confusion. At Izuku’s confused look, Todoroki says, “You were talking out loud.” He explains.
“Oh, heh, sorry.” Izuku apologizes. “We should probably head to lunch.” He says hurriedly, standing from his desk. He doesn’t see Todoroki frown and watch him with concern.
Izuku lets out a small sigh as he lands on his bed. The day had been mentally exhausting. He’d been spacey all day, and fumbled with excuses when his friends asked if he was okay. Not to mention, when he returned home, his father had a set of questions waiting for him about the camp. Remembering what happened after the USJ, Izuku tells him everything he knows.
Izuku glances over at his bag, thinking he should get started on his homework. Sighing again, he pulls his books from his bag and goes to his desk. He sets everything out and begins working.
In the middle of working on a worksheet for Present Mic, Izuku’s stomach growls quietly and he decides it time for a snack. Izuku stands from his seat and leaves his room. On his way to the kitchen, he passes by his father’s room.
“And what are you planning on doing once you’ve acquired the student, Tomura?” His father asks and Izuku tenses. What was his father talking about? He guesses the other person he’s talking to is Shigaraki, and Izuku feels worried. “Well, with the information I’ve received from Izuku, the class will be there. I’d advise putting together a strategy beforehand.” Izuku feels sick, and he can’t listen to anymore. He rushes to the kitchen, grabbing a cup of water.
Izuku has a very bad feeling about the camp.
The end of the school year comes quicker than anticipated, and Izuku finds himself on the bus to the camp. He can’t help but feel worried about the camp, knowing that his father and Shigaraki are planning something. It can’t be good. Thankfully, he has the distraction of Todoroki and the others for the bus ride.
When they had first gotten to the camp, they had met the Wild Wild Pussycats. Pixie Bob created earth monsters for the students to fight on their way to the camp, and it had taken longer than expected. Everyone was tired, and some probably wanted to collapse in a bed, but the mention of dinner made everyone perk back up. “Thanks for the food!” Izuku exclaims along with his class.
As Izuku eats, he listens to his classmates conversations, smiling slightly. Kirishima and Kaminari are over excited about the food, and Mineta is stuffing his face beside him. Todoroki is seated on the other of Izuku, while Uraraka and Iida are across from them. He likes the feeling of being surrounded by his friends like this. ‘Though, they won’t really be my friends for much longer, will they?’ As Izuku raises food to his mouth, he pauses and frowns.
“Midoriya?” Todoroki asks, catching his, Uraraka, and Iida’s attention.
“Are you alright, Deku?” Uraraka questions, eyes full of concern.
Izuku hurriedly nods, “I-I’m fine! Just got lost on thought!” He exclaims, faking a smile. He misses what his friends say in response, focusing on Kouta, Mandalay’s nephew. When they first got to the camp, he was there and seemed quite unhappy they were there. Izuku has a feeling there was something going on, and makes a note about it.
Izuku brings Kouta to Mandalay after he catches Kouta, thankful he had been able to reach him in time. Mineta had been up to his usual, trying to get a peek of the girls while everyone was in the hot springs. Kouta had pushed him down and probably lost his balance before falling himself. Thankfully, Izuku’s body had reacted before he could, and he caught the boy before he fell. “Looks like he just passed out from the fear of falling. Thanks for catching him, Eraser mentioned something about there being ‘an incarnation of human lust’ among you boys, so I had him acting as look out for the girls.” The pro explains, and Izuku finds himself nervously rubbing his hands together.
“Kouta...he um...he doesn’t seem too keen on the concept of heroes.”
“I grew up around most kids my age wanting to become heroes,” ‘myself included’ goes unsaid, “A kid this young being so jaded...it’s something I’ve never really seen before.” Izuku explains softly.
“Yeah...it shouldn’t come as a surprise, but there are many out there who aren’t fans of heroes...if he had a normal upbringing, he would have probably grown to idolize heroes as well.” Mandalay replies, and Izuku feels confusion. What did she mean by ‘normal’?
“Mandalay’s cousins, Kouta’s parents...they used to be heroes, but lost their lives on the job.” Pixie Bob cuts in, entering the room. Izuku frowns, eyes trailing over to Kouta.
“But, for a child just beginning to understand his surroundings, it didn’t mean anything. His parents were his world, his everything. Even though ‘they had left him’ the world around him celebrated. His parents were praised and celebrated for their actions. I’m pretty sure he’s not very fond of us either, but with no other relatives, he may feel obligated to follow us and our orders. From Kouta’s point of view, heroes are an incomprehensible, disgusting sort of creature.” Izuku feels a heavy weight settle in the pit of his stomach. He processes the information he’s heard from Mandalay, but doesn’t say anything. “Anyways, you should probably go get some clothes on.”
Izuku leaves, his thoughts accompanying him.
The next day, everyone is working on advancing their quirks. They’re all given different tasks specialized to improving their power. In Izuku’s case, he’s working with Tiger, another member of the Wild Wild Pussycats. Aizawa had explained to them that even though they may have improved mentally and somewhat physically, they still had to work on strengthening their quirks. At some point class 1-B joins them, and a few more people join Izuku as he trains with Tiger.
While everyone is training, no one notices Kouta watching them from behind a tree.
After they’re done training for the day, Pixie Bob and Ragdoll inform them that from now on, they’ll be making dinner themselves. Everyone seems upset by this, but no one complains. They all get right to work, and as they do, Iida catches everyone’s attention. “Now that you mention it...during times of disaster or the like, providing for the stomachs and hearts of evacuees at the the refuge forms part of the rescue procedure…” He then turns to the class, exclaiming, “OF COURSE! AS EXPECTED OF U.A. NO ACTIVITY GOES TO WASTE! LET’S MAKE THE TASTIEST CURRY EVERYONE!” The whole class ends up cheering in reply.
Izuku does his part as the others handle starting the fires for the ovens, cutting up vegetables, or cooking the rice. As he’s busy helping Iida, Uraraka calls Todoroki over to her.
“Todoroki! Can you help us light the fire?” Ochako calls, smiling. Todoroki comes over and lights the fire for them. Her and Mina watch in fascination as the flames begin. Ochako jumps up and down in excitement as she whoops. “Thanks Todoroki!” She cheers.
“You’re welcome, Uraraka.” He replies, standing up.
Just as he’s about to leave, Ochako grabs his sleeve. “I’ve got a plan to get you and Deku together!” She whispers to him and Todoroki looks at her in surprise. “You wanna tell him how you feel, right?” She asks, and he nods. “Then let me help you guys!”
“What’s this about Todoroki telling someone how he feels?” Ashido asks, standing in front of them. Ochako shrieks in surprise.
“M-Mina!” She whines. “You scared me!” Mina giggles in reply.
“Sooo?~ What’s going on with 1-A’s pretty boy?~” Mina asks, grinning. Ochako and Todoroki share a look. Ochako doesn’t feel comfortable with spilling Todoroki’s secret, but he gives her a small nod.
She then looks to Mina. “I’m trying to help Todoroki tell Deku that he likes him.” She explains, and she hears Mina squeal.
“Oooooo!~ Lemme help! I’m awesome with this kind of stuff!” She pleads. Ochako and Todoroki share a look. Todoroki shrugs and Ochako looks over at Mina.
“Operation get Deku and Todoroki together is a go!”
Meanwhile, Izuku notices that Kouta is walking off, away from the area where they were eating dinner. Worried, Izuku follows him, holding a plate of food. He follows Kouta up to a mountain and watches for a bit. He doesn’t say anything until he hears the boy’s stomach grumble. “You must be hungry, right?” Izuku asks, walking over to him. “Here, have this.” He offers. “It’s curry.”
“What the?! How do you know about this place?!” Kouta exclaims.
“Ah, sorry! I thought you might not have anything to eat, so I followed your footsteps.” Izuku replies, voice soft.
“Whatever, I don’t want any! I told you, didn’t I?! I have no intention of hanging out with you! Get out of my hideout! Go away!” Kouta exclaims in response.
“Your...hideout?” Izuku questions.
“Tch, getting so fired up over strengthening your quirk...makes me sick! You wanna show off your stupid ‘power’ that damn much?” Kouta grumbles.
Izuku frowns. “Your parents...they were the water quirk team ‘Water Horse’, weren’t they?” He asks, and he sees Kouta stiffen.
“Did Mandalay tell you?!” He snaps, sounding angry.
Izuku briefly wonders if he made a mistake, bringing up Kouta’s parents like that. “Ah….I’m sorry.” He apologizes. “It’s just...I heard talk of it at some point...and I thought that information might be, well,” He takes a breath, “It was an awful incident. I remember it.” He says somberly.
“Shut up.” Kouta practically growls. “I swear, everyone must be frickin’ crazy….it’s so dumb. People calling themselves heroes or villains or whatever and killing each other! All of them using ‘quirks’ and showing them off! And then they end up like that. Idiots!”
Izuku falls quiet. He isn’t sure how to continue. This isn’t like when he was talking to Todoroki back at the Sports Festival, or confronting Bakugou during training. ‘He doesn’t just hate heroes...he hates quirks too, he hates this whole world of superpowers itself.’ What can he say to a little boy who's lost everything and hates the world in return?
“What?! What do you want?! If you’ve got no business with me, then beat it!” Kouta cries.
Izuku looks down at the plate of food in his hands, thinking. “There’s...a lot of different viewpoints on quirks, so I can’t make any blanket statements, but...if you repudiate them to that extent...you’re only going to make things hard for yourself.”
It seems like this was the wrong thing to say, because Kouta scowls at him. “SHUT UP! HONESTLY, JUST GO AWAY!” He cries, and Izuku hangs his head.
“I’m sorry…” He apologizes quietly. “All I could say was incoherent rambling…” He places the plate he’s holding down on the ground. “I’ll leave your curry here for you.”
With that, Izuku leaves, heading back to the camp.
Neither notice the imprint of a fist in the side of the mountain wall.
The next day during training, Izuku finds himself thinking back to the conversation he had with Kouta the night before. He wonders what All Might would do if he was here. How would he handle the situation with Kouta? What would he say to make everything better?
After Aizawa is done speaking about making progress, Izuku speaks up, “That reminds me, Mr. Aizawa, I know it’s already day three but...is All Might not ah-- I mean, are the other teachers not going to come to the camp?” He questions.
“It’s just as I said before we reached the lodge. We’re operating on a strictly need-to-know basis so that villains don’t catch on to our every move.” Aizawa replies, and Izuku feels his heart in his throat.
‘Maybe that could’ve been possible if I weren’t here…’
“That’s why you’re with us four now!” Ragdoll exclaims.
“And that goes all the more for All Might. We’ve surmised that he is one of the villains’ goals, so of course we wouldn’t have him come with us.” Aizawa says. “For better or for worse, the man stands out. So this is how it has to be….”
‘Probably for worse way more often than for better.’ Izuku looks down. “Ah….”
Pixie Bob mentions something about a test of courage later on, and as Izuku continues training, everyone else cheers in excitement.
As Izuku puts wood into the furnace for dinner, Todoroki comes over to him, holding a pot. “Did you have some kind of business with All Might?” He asks, and Izuku pauses in his ministrations to look at him. “You asked Mr. Aizawa about him earlier.”
“Oh, yeah, it was um...well it was about Kouta.” Izuku replies.
“Kouta? Who’s that?” Todoroki questions.
“Huh? He’s that kid over there, look…” Izuku points as he trails off, not seeing Kouta. “Oh...he’s gone again.” He mumbles. ‘Might be at his ‘hideout’. He really does hate this, doesn’t he…?’ Izuku returns to putting wood in the furnace. “That kid, he hates heroes. He even hates the whole world of superhumans, and quirks in general. I couldn’t think of what I should tell him for his sake. If All Might were here...I bet he’d have a comeback at the ready.” Izuku sighs, glancing over at his friend. “What about you Todoroki? What would you say?”
Todoroki is quiet for a few minutes, collecting his thoughts. “It depends.” He settles on.
“Right, of course, it depends but…” Izuku trails off.
“Even if he’s told all the right things, if you don’t know his background then you’ll only succeed in annoying him. If words alone were enough to move him, then that means it didn’t weigh heavily on him to begin with. The important thing is what the person who’s saying it has done...and what they’re doing now. I think that...words are always accompanied by deeds.”
Izuku looks back down at the wood in his hands. “You’re right...now that you mention it...I guess I did come across as some bystander spouting nonsense.” He murmurs.
“I don’t know what you want to do with that kid, but sticking your nose into such a delicate subject so bluntly…” Todoroki starts, “Then again, you are surprisingly inclined to bust into people’s personal space without any regard to that.”
Izuku winces slightly, feeling guilty. “Sorry…” He apologizes, knowing exactly what Todoroki is referencing.
“Don’t be. Besides, butting in where you don’t belong is the essence of being a hero, right?” Todoroki replies, giving Izuku one of his small smiles. Izuku’s heart flutters, but he squishes the feeling immediately. Izuku gives him a tiny smile in reply, and continues with the wood.
“Todoroki...do you think you could light the fire for me?” Izuku asks softly. Todoroki nods and bends down next to him, using his quirk to light the fire. “Your fire...it really is amazing.” Izuku murmurs.
“I’m only using it thanks to you.” Todoroki replies, glancing at him. “Midoriya...there’s something I need to tell you.” He says, and Izuku looks over at him. “For a while now...I’ve—”
“HEY, YOU TWO, IDLE HANDS! COME ON, WE’RE MAKING THE ULTIMATE MEAT AND POTATO STEW!” Iida shouts, looking at Izuku and Todoroki. Izuku hears Uraraka and Ashido yell at him. Todoroki quietly excuses himself, leaving Izuku to himself.
After dinner, Pixie Bob has everyone line up for the test of courage. The ones in remedial lessons get stuck with Aizawa, and Ashido cries as she’s dragged by Aizawa’s capture weapon to the classroom where they’d be learning. Izuku winces as they’re dragged away. Pixie Bob starts explaining how the test of courage will work. First class 1-B will be the first to scare 1-A, and 1-A would be entering the forest in pairs of two and 1-B would have about fifteen minutes.
Everyone draws lots and Izuku finds himself with Todoroki. He gives Todoroki a smile as the pairs start entering the forest. He whispers a small ‘good luck’ to Uraraka and Tsuyu as they walk past him. A few more pairs enter, and that’s when Izuku spots something odd. He sees purple gas peeking out from above the trees. His eyes widen, and his heart feels stuck in his throat. He has a feeling he knows exactly what’s about to happen.
“What the-?!” Mineta cries as they all see two figures stepping out from the trees. Pixie Bob and Mandalay are immediately on guard. One of the figures lifts their arm and whatever they’re holding. Pixie Bob suddenly lifts up from the ground and she’s sent flying towards the figures.
“Why..! We were supposed to be perfectly safe…! So why…” Mineta cries.
‘Oh no..Kouta!’ Izuku thinks, not seeing him anywhere. He tries to ignore the guilt eating at him for now, making himself focus on Kouta.
“Kids, run! Do not fight them! Did you hear me?! You take the lead, class president!” Mandalay orders.
“Understood, loud and clear! We’re going!” Iida replies. Izuku stares at the battle that’s breaking out in front of them, heart hammering in his chest.
“Iida, go on without me.” He says.
“Midoriya?! What are you saying?!” Iida shouts as he leads the remaining people of class away.
“Midoriya!” Todoroki exclaims, and Izuku can hear the worry in his voice.
Izuku ignores them both in favor of turning of Mandalay. “I know where Kouta is!” He cries, and with that, he takes off. Todoroki and Iida yell for him as he speeds off, determined to get Kouta to safety. He isn’t sure if he’s so determined to do this because it may ease his guilt, or if it’s because he genuinely wants to help Kouta. Izuku pushes the thoughts aside as he runs to the mountain where Kouta is, seeing the villain there. Using One for All, he climbs and grabs Kouta just as the villain is about to land his hit. The two roll on the ground, Izuku shielding Kouta from any debris. When they stop rolling, Izuku pushes himself up and faces the villain.
‘Even though I came to prevent him from coming into contact with a villain..to think a villain would be right here! Shit...my phone’s completely broken! I can’t hope for backup on this one. I need to do something against this villain by myself! All the while protecting Kouta…”
“Hmm? Oh, I know you! You’re-” Izuku doesn’t give him the chance to speak. He jumps up and uses One for All to land a kick right to the villain’s face. He then jumps a few feet away, landing on the ground easily.
“You won’t be laying a single hand on him.” Izuku hisses, eyes narrowed. He can do this! “It’s okay, Kouta. I’ll save you, no matter what.”
We’re slowly moving to my favorite phase of the story!! I hope you guys like it so far, lemme know!! Also, happy mother’s day to all the moms!! I’ll see you guys in tomorrow’s chapters!
"Lost myself but worse than anything
I woke up on my own
-The World Alive, Dreamer"
“You say...that you’ll save him, huh? That’s kinda surprising coming from the kid of a villain!” The villain laughs, while Izuku grits his teeth. “Your name’s Midoriya, right? I don’t care if your some hot shot villain’s kid! You’re standing in my way and I’m gonna have fun tearing you apart!” He shouts, ripping off the cloak he was wearing. “Show me some blood!” He lunges for Izuku and Izuku powers up his quirk. He knows he can’t stop the villain’s punch like All Might would be able to, but he can definitely dodge it. He grabs onto the villain’s arm and flips himself up and over him, landing a kick on his back.
“It’s unfair that you know my name, but I don’t know yours, don’t you think?” Izuku questions.
“Heh, you’re fast, kid. I’ll give ya that.” The villain replies. “Name’s Muscular.” He says as he kicks Izuku and sends him crashing into the wall of the mountain. Izuku feels the wind get knocked out of him and he lands on the ground, coughing harshly. He hears Muscular laughing from above him, while the blood drips down his forehead. “Now there’s blood! That’s what I’m talking about!” He exclaims. “What did you say before?! That you were gonna save the kid?!”
Izuku scowls at Muscular and gets up. He uses One for All to boost himself ahead, and aims to kick Muscular. The villain lifts his arm up in enough time and blocks it. That’s when Izuku notices his arm covered in pink tendrils. What are they? “That’s it? That’s your quirk?” Muscular laughs. “Like I said, you’re quick, but not strong enough!” He shouts, using his arm to fling Izuku back. Izuku lands against the mountain wall again, wincing in pain. “My quirk is muscle enhancement! The speed and power of my muscle fibers are so over the bar that my skin can’t contain them!”
Izuku finds himself grinning slightly, ignoring his pain for a minute. ‘Big mistake, telling me how your quirk works.’ He thinks. For the moment, he lets Muscular boast about his abilities.
“You’re an inferior version of me in every way! You’ll save him no matter what?! How exactly?! Nice words you can’t follow through on don’t mean a damn thing!” Muscular continues to boast, but then he stops. Izuku looks up to see Kouta standing there, trembling in fear. Izuku takes note that he’s crying.
“The Water Horses...mama and papa...were they both...tortured like that before you killed them?!” Izuku’s eyes widen when he realizes what Kouta is saying. Muscular killed his parents?
“The Water Horses were the duo who made me need this artificial eye!” The villain exclaims, pointing to his eye.
Kouta grits his teeth, clenching his fists. “IT’S BECAUSE OF YOU! IT’S BECAUSE OF BASTARDS LIKE YOU THAT THINGS ALWAYS END UP LIKE THIS!”
The little boy cries, and Izuku thinks, ‘No, this is because of me.’
Muscular clicks his tongue. “God...brats these days sure do have a mouth on them.” He says. “That won’t do, kid. Look, it ain’t like I resent them cause of the eye, hear me? I kill cuz I feel like it. Those two tried to stop me, and it was a result of our clash of wills. It was them who were wrong for not being able to do what they wanted.” Muscular walks toward Kouta and Izuku can feel the anger boiling under his skin. “Don’t worry though kid, I’ll reunite you with your precious mama and papa!” Muscular yells, grinning, as he aims a punch for Kouta.
Izuku gets in the way, One for All powering him forward. ‘I can’t play it safe anymore with anything less than eight percent!’ He thinks.
As he’s about to attack, Muscular turns around to see him. “And here he comes! Just like I knew you would, kid!” Muscular exclaims, his punch aiming for Izuku instead of Kouta. Izuku smirks and he sees Muscular’s insane grin waver slightly. Izuku manages to get his leg trapped in between the muscle fiber and pulls. The fibers rip apart and Muscular’s face scrunches up in pain. Izuku then takes his chance to punch his face, using a little more than eight percent. His arm burns, but Izuku pays it no mind and lands in front of Kouta. Muscular stumbles back, “W-What the fuck?! How did you?!”
The smirk never leaves Izuku’s face. “You told me how you tick.” He replies.
“What?! No I didn’t!” Muscular yells in reply.
“Only an idiot would tell the enemy about their quirk, and that’s exactly what you did.” Izuku says. “What were you saying before? That I was an inferior version of you?” He questions, and his voice has gone cold. “I guess we’ll just have to see about that.”
Muscular lets out a shout of fury and charges for Izuku. The boy easily dodges his punch, kicking his stomach in turn. Muscular coughs up blood in response. He then kicks one of Muscular’s legs out from under him and uses his elbow to send his head to the ground. He’s too fast for Muscular to read. The villain quickly recovers though and Izuku sees the fibers cover his arm once more. Muscular grabs Izuku’s arm and flings him onto the ground. Izuku gasps in pain, and he swears his ribs are bruised or worse. “You know, you’re just like a pesky little ant that refuses to be squashed!” Muscular exclaims, putting his foot on top of Izuku. The boy cries out in pain, trying to get his foot off. “Just be squished and show me more blood already!” The villain cries.
Izuku lets out a roar and uses One for All to lift Muscular’s foot off of him. Once he’s done that, Izuku stands up and goes to attack again. Muscular blocks him with his arm and it’s Izuku’s hand that gets trapped between the muscle fibers. “The same trick won’t work on me twice, kid!” The villain exclaims.
Izuku smirks, “Good thing it’s not the same trick, then.” He replies, using his other arm to form a fist. ‘One for All….a hundred percent!’ He feels some of his shirt tear away as he lands his hit on Muscular. Debris is sent flying everywhere, and some of the earth beneath them cracks at the sheer pressure of Izuku’s power.
Kouta is sent flying into the air, and he screams. A few seconds later, something catches him and he looks up to see Midoriya. He caught his shirt with his teeth. “Gotcha.” Midoriya says through clenched teeth. “Sorry about that.” Midoriya apologizes as he helps Kouta up.
“Thanks for-” The words die in his throat as he sees the state Midoriya’s arm is in. It’s purple and mangled, and it looks like it hurts. ‘Why…?’ He thinks, watching as Midoriya pants harshly. Why did Midoriya fight to protect him? He barely knows anything about him, hell, Kouta kicked him the first time they met! So why was he protecting him from such a terrifying villain like Muscular?
“Let’s get back to camp,” Izuku says, “It’s not far.” There’s crash from behind them and Izuku whips around to see Muscular standing up from the rubble. ‘No way..it can’t be! I hit him with a full powered attack! I used a hundred percent! How?!’ He thinks, panicked.
“Heh...a bit too obvious, but not too bad, Midoriya!” The villain exclaims.
‘Shit! What do I do?! I need a plan! Think!’ “Why are you here?!” Izuku asks, trying to buy time for himself.
“Not telling. I don’t really care what the big guys are up to anyways. I just wanna shed some blood!” Muscular replies, walking toward him. “Remember what I told you earlier? We’ve just been playing around, having fun! Until now. Now, I’m serious!” He reaches into his pocket and pulls something out. “I’m coming at you for real, cause truth be told, you’re pretty strong. I see that now.” Izuku watches as he puts something over his fake eye. It’s almost as if it were a red and black contact.
“Quick, Kouta, grab on!” Izuku orders as he sees the muscle fibers wrap around the villain. Once Izuku feels Kouta’s arms wrap around his neck, he leaps out of the path of Muscular’s attack. Izuku stares with wide eyes when he sees the destruction the single attack causes. ‘It’s like his quirk has been supercharged! He really was just playing around, toying with me until he killed me!’ Muscular turns around and slams his hand into the side of the mountain. The whole wall cracks and Izuku is sent out of the air. Both him and Kouta land harshly on the ground. He pushes himself up, wincing. ‘If we could just get back to camp. Mr. Aizawa should be there, he could erase this guy’s quirk.’ Izuku brightens up a bit at the thought. ‘Yeah, that just might work! If I can get him to follow me and Kouta, we could lead him back! But...I’m so tired from today’s training it won’t work, and if I turn my back on him I’m done for.’ Izuku squeezes his eyes shut. ‘I have no choice but to fight him! I need a plan!’
Izuku stands up, wincing in pain. “Stand back, Kouta.” He says. “And then, when it’s time, run as fast as you can. I have a plan.”
“You’re gonna fight him again?!” The little boy cries.
“I’M COMING FOR YOU!” Muscular screams, grinning insanely. Izuku powers up One for All, and lets Muscular charge him. Izuku meets him halfway with a Detroit Smash, and immediately lets himself be overpowered by the villain. “WHAT’S WRONG?!” Muscular shouts. “THAT WAS EVEN WEAKER THAN BEFORE!”
“Okay…” Izuku murmurs. “It’ll all be okay!” He exclaims, and he’s yelling it to Kouta. “I will not let him get pass me!” He exclaims again. “KOUTA, RUN!” He screams. “RUN, NOW!”
“Still looking after him?! You’re hysterical!” Izuku’s legs dig into the ground, until he’s laying on his back, surrounded by the muscle fibers. The ground cracks around them, and Muscular’s screaming some more.
‘I have to time this right.’ Izuku thinks. ‘If I’m one second late, this’ll all be for nothing!’ “SHUT YOUR DAMN MOUTH!” He yells, feeling his arms begin to shake from the pressure.
“SHOW ME YOUR BLOOD!”
‘Now!’ Just as Muscular crushes him, Izuku drops his quirk, the familiar green lightning disappearing. His back screams in pain as he’s crushed deeper into the earth.
“You’re done for, kid.” Muscular grins, looking down at Midoriya. His eyes widen in shock when he sees that he isn’t looking into dead eyes. Instead, he’s staring at a smirk, and two, very much alive eyes. In fact, the boy’s eyes are void of any fear, they hold emptiness instead. For some reason, the sight of them makes Muscular to shrink away.
“My words exactly.” Izuku says, before using One for All to thrust his hand into the muscle fibers. When he has a strong grip one quite a few of them, he pulls his hand out and he hears Muscular howl in pain. Izuku powers up his quirk and forces Muscular off of him, throwing him into the mountain. Muscular lays there, staring with wide eyes. Once Izuku sees the fibers start to disappear, he grabs Muscular by his throat, and drags him to the edge of the cliff. “Now, you’re going to tell me everything you know about what’s going on. Unless you’d like to take an unpleasant trip down the mountain.” Izuku threatens.
When Muscular looks up, he’s looking into cold, green eyes. He’s met with an overwhelming aura far too dark for a hero in training. “You’re fucking crazy kid. Really shaping into your old man, huh?” Muscular states, coughing up blood. Almost every part of him is covered in cuts and bruises. Any remaining muscle fibers are twitching, shooting pain through Muscular’s body.
Izuku narrows his eyes, and he tightens his grip on Muscular’s throat, even using some of his quirk to do it. “Give me the information I asked for. I won’t ask again.” He says.
“F-Fine! They want some k-kid named Bakugou! Th-That’s all I know!” Muscular admits, having trouble speaking due to the pressure Izuku is applying.
Izuku narrows his eyes, unbelieving. “There’s more, isn’t there?” He asks.
“There’s not!” Izuku tightens his grip once more, and Muscular starts choking. Izuku doesn’t stop. He needs information, and he’s going to get it.
His back suddenly feels wet. Confused, Izuku turns around and sees the terrified eyes of the child he swore he’d save. Kouta is trembling, tears pouring down his cheeks. He looks at the boy’s hands which are outstretched, and sees they have small droplets of water on them. Izuku finds himself looking back at Kouta’s eyes and he sees the fear in them. Why is he afraid? Izuku stopped Muscular, he’s not in danger anymore. Izuku saved him. That’s when the realization dawns on him, and Izuku’s eyes widen.
‘He’s afraid of me.’ He thinks and he slowly looks at Muscular, and his hand on the villain’s throat. What is he doing? He’s horrified at the thought of what he almost did to this villain. Beginning to shake, Izuku drops the now unconscious Muscular on the ground, as he falls to his knees. He wraps his arms around himself as a feeble attempt to comfort himself. He almost killed someone! Just like a villain! What is wrong with him?! Izuku can’t believe himself. “O-Oh god…” He mutters, still shaking. “Oh god what did I do ?” Izuku whispers. “What did I almost do ?” His eyes drift over to Muscular’s form, and he stares in horror. Izuku tears his eyes away from the villain and instead stares at the ground. He hears Kouta whimper quietly and he looks up at the boy. He can’t fall apart right now, not in front of Kouta. He still has to get him to safety. Once everyone was safe, then he could let himself cry and break down.
Izuku sniffles softly and he stands up. “Kouta…” He mumbles. “Are you alright..? Are you hurt?” He asks, his voice still shaking. He walks over to the boy, and Kouta whimpers again, scooting back. “H-Hey, it’s alright. It’s alright now, y-you’re safe.” Izuku says, trying to be as comforting as possible. When Kouta stops moving, Izuku kneels down to his level. “I-I’m sorry you had to see all of that…” He apologizes. “I promise, you’ll never have to see it again.”
“W-Why..?” Kouta mutters, still crying. “Y-You don’t know a thing about me..! Why would you go this far...when you don’t know a thing about me?!” He cries.
‘Because that’s what heroes do’ is on the tip of his tongue, he stops himself before he can really say it though. Is he really a hero? With all of the things that he’s caused, has he done anything truly heroic? Even his attempts at saving someone turned out to be a failure, for he was more of a villain here then a hero. So instead of saying the words that he wish he could say, this is what he settles for, “Because,” He says, “If I can save at least one life, maybe it’d ease the guilt I feel.”
After Izuku gathers his bearings, he stands up and looks at the forest, where fire is quickly spreading through the trees. “With the fires spreading through the forest, all of the ways out will become dead ends.” Izuku looks over to Kouta. “Kouta, we need your quirk. I may have been able to stop Muscular, but we all need your help.” Izuku pleads. Kouta gulps and nods his head. Izuku squats in front of Kouta, “Hurry, get on! I’ve gotta take you to the facility.” He says.
“Can you really move after getting beaten up like that?” Kouta questions quietly.
Izuku nods, giving him a small smile. “Yeah, I’m tougher than you think.” He says with a wink. With that, Kouta climbs onto his back and they take off.
Izuku runs through the forest, being mindful of the burning trees. Kouta uses his quirk to pour some water on the flames when he can. They continue like this for a while, and Izuku pants as he runs. ‘We should almost be there…!’ He thinks.
“Look!” Kouta suddenly exclaims. “Over there!”
Izuku looks in the direction the boy is pointing in and sees his teacher. “Mr. Aizawa!” Izuku calls, running to him.
Aizawa stops in his tracks, turning his head toward Izuku. “Midori-” He cuts himself off and Izuku can see him narrow his eyes slightly. Was it his injuries? They weren’t that bad, just a few scratches and bruises.
“Mr. Aizawa, thank god!” Izuku exclaims. “This is serious, there’s a lot I have to tell you! But before that, I need to talk to Mandalay!”
“Hold on..” Aizawa tries to interject.
“Take care of Kouta for me. You’ve got to protect him!” Izuku says, gently setting the little boy down.
“I said, hold on.” Aizawa tries once more.
“I’m leaving it to you!” Izuku exclaims and starts to take off again. He has to find Mandalay!
“Midoriya, hold up!” Aizawa shouts, and Izuku stops in his tracks. “You look beat half to death. You went and did it again, didn't you?” The teacher asks.
“Ah..um…” Izuku stammers nervously.
Aizawa sighs, frowning. “Fine.” He relents. “But give Mandalay a message for me..”
"I wish I knew better than to let this get the best of me
I have to give what's left inside of me
-The World Alive, Lost in the Dark"
After dropping Kouta off with Aizawa, Izuku heads back to where he split up from the group. He gets there just as one of the villains is about to land an attack on Mandalay. Izuku ends up attacking the villain, breaking his sword. “MANDALAY! KOUTA’S SAFE!” He shouts, and he can see the relief on her face.
Izuku yelps as he tumbles to the ground. He quickly pushes himself up. “I’ve got a message from Mr. Aizawa! Use your telepathy to tell everyone!” Mandalay nods in response.
‘Members of class A and B, I, professional hero, Eraserhead...hereby authorize you all for combat!’
“Thanks for the message, but seriously, go back right his instant!” Mandalay orders.
“Sorry, one more thing! Tell everyone the villains’ target! They’re after Bakugou!” Izuku exclaims as he uses One for All for a speed boost. He doesn’t notice one of the villains charging for him.
“Don’t lay a finger on him, Magne! Remember who he is!” Izuku glances at the two villains, seeing them argue before he gets too far away to hear them.
As he runs through the forest, he formulates plans in his head. He has to stop the villains from getting Bakugou somehow, but he doubts he’ll be able to do it alone. So how? His thought process is broken when he sees a shadowed claw appear in front of him. It slams him down into the ground, and Izuku howls in pain. However, something grabs him from the ground and Izuku looks to see what it was. “Shouji?!” He exclaims in surprise.
“It looks like you’ve taken a nasty beating, you shouldn’t be moving anymore.” Shouji comments, putting Izuku down on the ground.
“It’s just a few scratches and bruises, I’m fine.” Izuku replies, almost immediately.
“I’m amazed at the lengths you’re willing to go to save your friends.”
Izuku takes a moment to look at the figure in front of them. “Just now...was that…?”
Shouji nods, “Yeah. We were ambushed by one of the villains. I covered for him, but...it triggered his quirk. If we want to go on past here, first we have to something about this .”
Standing in front of them is Tokoyami, being swallowed by Dark Shadow. Izuku recalls the moment during the Sports Festival when the boy explained his quirk to him. ‘Dark Shadow is harder to control when there’s no light…’
“GET...AWAY...FROM ME! YOU’LL DIE!”
“TOKOYAMI!” Izuku cries out, eyes wide.
“Shhhh, be quiet.” Shouji says, holding a finger to his lips.
“Wha-What’s going on, Shouji?” Izuku asks, confused.
“We were attacked by a villain, a high velocity, ever-shifting onslaught of blades. I jumped to protect Tokoyami, but my arm got severed in the process. We were able to hide in the bushes.” Shouji explains.
“Your arm?!” Izuku cries in horror.
“It’s no flesh wound, but I didn’t lose it. My quirk can replicate its own replication pods. So the ‘arm’ that got cut off was a replicated arm, nothing more.” Izuku lets out a soft sigh of relief at that. “But even so, I take it he wasn’t able to fight against his quirk any longer. I’m afraid Dark Shadow started it’s rampage.”
‘When it’s really dark out, he can’t keep it in check. So his quirk can’t be rolled back when it peaks in power. Furthermore, his sense of regret and righteous indignation are most likely Dark Shadow even more, even as he’s trying to suppress it…’ As he and Shouji walk around, Shouji steps on a twig and it snaps. The sound makes Dark Shadow attack the spot the two had once stood in. ‘They’ve transformed into a monster that’ll reflexively attack anything that moves or makes sound.’
“Don’t...don’t worry about m-me-” Tokoyami is cut off by a cry of pain. “Join up with the others! Save them!” He says, trying to calm Dark Shadow.
“Light...of course. The fire, if we can lure it back to the camp, we can make it pipe back down.” Shouji mumbles. “Midoriya, no matter what state I wind up in, I have no desire to become the kind of person who’d run and abandon a friend who’s suffering. Likewise, you’re worried about your childhood friend. That’s why you’re pushing yourself so much, isn’t it? If you insist you can still move, then I’ll draw Dark Shadow’s attention and open the way for you.”
“Wait--both the camp and the fire are really far from here! I couldn’t let you do something so dangerous, Shou--” He’s cut off by Dark Shadow destroying the tree they were hiding behind. Both Shouji and Izuku duck for cover, rolling on the ground.
“I know it’s dangerous. Acts of rescue always carry some level of risk. That’s the very reason we’re called ‘heroes’. And now you have a choice. Will you stay and help me save Tokoyami, or will you dash toward Bakugou? Which will it be, Midoriya?”
Izuku’s eyes are drawn to Tokoyami, seeing him struggle with his quirk. Before he can answer, he hears an explosion and a very familiar string of curses. A small smile forms across Izuku’s face. “Follow me,” Izuku says to Shouji as he breaks out into a run. Shouji follows him, confused, and by extension, so does Dark Shadow. “If Dark Shadow reacts to sudden noises, then make a decoy by replicating your arms, and lead it’s attacks away from your body! I think I know where we can get some light!” Izuku explains as they run. “If I have to choose between both of them, I want to save both!”
Shouji does as Izuku tells him to and leads Dark Shadow as he follows after Izuku. When Izuku hears the sound of explosions get closer, he speeds up a bit. “There!” He exclaims suddenly, seeing not only Bakugou, but Todoroki as well.
“Bakugou! Todoroki! One of you, please, make us some light!” Shouji pleads as they run to them. Dark Shadow loses control in the area and destroys nearly everything, taking down trees, and even the villain the boys seem to be fighting.
“It’s Shouji, and Midoriya...and is that, Tokoyami?!” Todoroki asks, confused.
“Hurry! Make some light!” Shouji exclaims again.
“He’s attacking indiscriminately. Right, some fire should help.” Todoroki notes, about to put down the person he’s carrying.
“Hold the fuck up.” Bakugou says, holding out his hand, making Todoroki stop. “I wanna see this.” He adds, seeing Dark Shadow practically decimate the villain the two were fighting. Once the villain is defeated, Bakugou and Todoroki create enough light for Tokoyami to take control back.
“Are you okay, Tokoyami?” Shouji asks, holding out a hand to his friend.
“I’m sorry, Shouji, Midoriya too. It was all my fault, my heart wasn’t prepared for this.” Tokoyami apologizes, hanging his head. “The moment your replicant arm was severed, I let my rage unleash Dark Shadow! Touched by the dark of night and also, my own anger, I ended up spurring on it’s mad frenzy. As a result, it’s heart swelled so much I couldn’t contain it, and I hurt Shouji inadvertently.”
“You can tell us all about it later. That’s what you yourself would say.” Shouji replies.
Izuku then turns to look at Todoroki, confused. “Todoroki, what are you doing here? I thought you were with Iida and the others.” He questions.
“I ran off, trying to follow you, but I ran into Bakugou instead.” Todoroki explains.
Izuku nods in response, and hums in thought. “We all should head back to camp, especially if the villains are after Bakugou.” He says. “Except, the Pussycats are still fighting with the villain at the square. If we take the path back, we’ll get noticed by them and lose time. The safest route is to cut a line straight through.”
“We don’t know how many villains there are. There’s a chance we’ll encounter some of nowhere.” Todoroki points out.
“We have Shouji’s detector ability, and your ice! Plus, we can even use Tokoyami. Dark Shadow will be invincible if we’re at the ready with some light to keep it at bay.” Izuku suggests.
“Honestly, with a lineup like this I wonder if even All Might wouldn’t be so scary.” Shouji comments.
Bakugou suddenly growls. “WHAT THE FUCK YOU LITTLE!”
“You walk in the middle.” Todoroki instructs, and Bakugou growls again.
“DON’T FUCKING GUARD ME, SHIT BRIGADE!”
Ignoring Bakugou, they begin their walk back to camp.
While walking in the forest, Izuku spots Uraraka and Tsuyu. “Uraraka?!” He calls out, seeing her holding someone down.
“Shouji! Everyone!” He spots Tsuyu hanging on a tree, something in her hair holding her up. As they run over, whoever Uraraka is holding down threw her off of them, and starts to run. They seem to pause when Izuku and the others grow closer.
“Wait!” Uraraka calls, “It’s too dangerous! We still don’t know what her quirk is!” However, as they approach, the girl is gone.
“Who was that girl, just now?” Izuku asks.
“A villain, and a damn crazy one!” His friend replies.
“Uraraka, you’re hurt.” Shouji notices.
“It’s nothing, I’m fine. I can I still walk...and wow, Deku’s in worse shape than me!”
“Well, I’m glad you’re both alright. You should come with us, we’re heading back toward the camp while escorting Bakugou.”
“Huh?” Uraraka asks, looking confused. Why did she look confused?
“If you’re escorting Bakugou...then where is he?” Tsuyu questions, and Izuku feels even more confused.
“What are you talking about, Bakugou’s right behind us….” Izuku mumbles, turning around with everyone to look at where Bakugou had once stood.
“Oh, him?” A new voice interjects, and the group turn around again. “I used my magic to snag him.” A villain states. “The kind of talent he has shouldn’t be on the side of heroes, so we’ll be taking him to a stage where he can shine.” The villain says.
“Let him go!” Izuku cries out.
“Move!” Todoroki shouts, and both Izuku and Shouji move to the side. Izuku watches as a mountain of ice forms from beneath Todoroki’s foot. It climbs up the tree where the villain is.
“All we’re doing is telling these people who have rigid values that,” The villain jumps up from tree branch he was on. “‘That’s not the only way to look at things.’ We simply wanted to make that point. All of you kids, your values have been chosen for you.”
“It’s not just Bakugou!” Shouji suddenly exclaims, and Izuku turns around to look at where Tokoyami was supposed to be. “Tokoyami is gone too!”
“Did you come all the way over here just to give us that spiel? You’re making light of us, aren’t you?” Todoroki questions, scowling.
“Well, I was originally an entertainer, after all. It’s a bad habit.” The villain rolls a small marble in between his fingers. “Nabbing Tokoyami was an improvisation.”
“YOU BASTARD!” Izuku cries. “YOU CAN’T JUST TAKE THEM!”
“Midoriya, calm down!” Todoroki says.
“Midoriya…?” The villain mutters.
Todoroki frowns, trying to come up with a plan of some sort. “Uraraka, take care of him for me!” He exclaims before using his quirk to create a massive wall of ice. The villain jumps into the air with ease.
“My apologies, all I do is deceive and run away...but that’s what I’m good for! Like I’d really want to fight with some hero cadets, right?” He puts a hand to his ear and speaks, “First strike team! The target has been successfully collected! I’m sorry to cut your fun short, but this concludes our mission! As planned, you have five minutes to rendezvous at the ‘collection point’.”
“No..” Izuku whispers.
“LIKE HELL I’LL LET YOU! THERE’S NO WAY YOU’RE GETTING AWAY!” Todoroki shouts as the villain makes his escape. The group starts chasing after him, Izuku having trouble keeping up. His injuries are starting to affect him. Pursing his lips, Izuku pushes onwards. He has to save his classmates! “Dammit! He’s fast, that mask face!” Todoroki grumbles.
“If only Iida were here…” Uraraka utters as she runs with them. The boy Todoroki had her watch over is floating behind her.
“We can’t give up, not yet! I’ve got to catch up to him...and take them back!” Izuku declares, and he fully knows that guilt is his main motivation right now.
“But at this rate, the distance between us is only increasing.” Shouji comments.
“Uraraka! Hurry, make us float!” Izuku suddenly exclaims. “And then, Tsuyu, once we’re floating, use your tongue to throw us with all your strength! Throw us as hard as you can! We’ll be able to fly towards him at high speed!” The words begin spilling from Izuku’s mouth, the boy not even taking a second to catch his breath. “Shouji, you can use your arms to guide our trajectory. You’ll pull us along! We’ll be okay as long as we’re in Uraraka’s field of vision, so estimate the distance to him…”
“I see, it’s like a human rocket.” Shouji hums.
“Hold on, Deku. Can you really move with your injuries?” Uraraka asks.
“Stay here, with those many injuries you would be in a lot of pain.” Todoroki adds.
“Right now, I don’t know what pain is.” Izuku replies immediately. “I can still move. Hurry!”
“At the very least…” Todoroki trails off, pulling off his button up, leaving him in his white undershirt. He rips it apart and creates a makeshift brace for Izuku’s damaged arm. Once it’s done, he stands beside Shouji. He nods to Uraraka and she makes them float.
“Go ahead, Tsuyu.” The girl nods and wraps her tongue around them.
“You have to save those two, okay?” Tsuyu asks, getting ready to throw them. Shouji grabs onto Todoroki and Midoriya as they’re shot into the air. When they see the villain and they see how fast they’re closing in, Izuku narrows his eyes. They can land this...they can land this. They land on the villain and crash to the ground, the villain groaning in pain. They look up and see the other villains around them.
“These brats! I know them! Who are they?!” One of the villains exclaim.
“Mister, dodge.” One of them says and the villain dodges. An onslaught of blue flames charge the students and they cry out. Izuku lands harshly on the ground and one of the villains go right for him. She stands above him and has a knife in her raised arm.
“Hi! I’m Toga, my dear Izuku! I was just thinking about this, but I think you’d look even cooler if you were just bleeding a little more, my dear Izuku! Your dad won’t be too happy about it though, but I’m sure he’d understand!”
“Eh?!” Izuku exclaims, dodging her knife as she tries to stab him.
“Get off of him!” Todoroki shouts, using his ice to shove her off. He extends a hand to Izuku.
“Thanks,” He says softly, standing up with Todoroki’s help.
“Where’s Bakugou?” One of the villains asks.
“Of course,” The villain the students were chasing after says, going into his pocket for the marbles. He looks at his pocket, puzzled.
“C’mon, let’s get out of here!” Shouji suddenly exclaims. “What you just did made it clear as day! I don’t know how your quirk works, but you flaunted them for quite some time. The marbles you put into your right pocket, are Tokoyami and Bakugou, aren’t they?”
“Shouji!” Izuku finds himself exclaiming, relieved.
“Hoho! And in such a short time, too! Figures, a guy with six arms would be a deft hand at pat downs!” The villain cheers.
“Then it’s done!” Todoroki exclaims and Izuku has a bad feeling about this. It doesn’t make sense that the villains seem so nonchalant about Shouji snatching the marbles from him. He narrows his eyes. His suspicions are proven correct when a warp gate opens, and he recognizes it’s Kurogiri’s. There’s something more going on, it wouldn’t have been that easy for Shouji to get their classmates back, after all.
“Guys, stay alert.” Izuku says, frowning.
“Huh? What are you talking about, Midoriya?” Shouji asks.
“There has to be some sort of trick here.” Is all Izuku says.
“Quite the smart one, aren’t you? It’s a bad habit of mine. See, one of the basic rules of magic is that when you’re flaunting something,” The villain takes his hat and mask off, showing the group his tongue. “It means you’ve got something to hide.” On his tongue rested the marbles that held Bakugou and Tokoyami in them. The marbles Shouji holds in his hand turn into shards of ice. “When you tried hitting me with that ice, I prepared a dummy.” He says as he puts his hat and mask back on. “And put it into my right pocket. When you saw me put what was in my right hand into my right pocket, you were so happy to fly the coop!”
‘A quirk that can shut things into compression orbs?!’ “Shit!” Izuku curses, watching as the villains go through the warp gate. Just as the villains are about to disappear, the beaming light shoots out from the bushes and destroys the villain’s mask. Todoroki, Shouji, and Izuku charge for the now free falling marbles. Shouji grabs one of the marbles first, and Izuku feels some relief. He then uses some of One for All to speed ahead when he sees one of the other villains going for the other marble. He gets to it at the very last second, snagging the marble before the villain could.
“Dammit!” The villain curses, blue fire swirling around his fist, as if he’s planning on attacking.
“Dabi, don’t!” Kurogiri scolds. “Master would be displeased if something happens to the boy!”
“Tch. Whatever.” The fire disappears and with that, the villains are gone.
Izuku falls to the ground, panting harshly. The marbles disappear, revealing Tokoyami and Bakugou. He can feel his heart pounding, he can even hear it. He briefly wonders if anyone else can hear it. As Izuku looks to at the others, a wave of disbelief washes over him. He can’t believe it, he really did it. He saved his classmates. He protected people. Izuku feels a few tears trickle down his cheeks, but he pays them no mind. He did something heroic.
“Midoriya? You’re crying…” Todoroki murmurs, sitting down beside him. “Are you alright?” He asks.
Izuku nods in response, sniffling. “We saved them.” He murmurs. “We did it.” He says, full of relief.
Todoroki nods, eyeing him. He opens his mouth, as if he were about to say something. Instead, he closes and seems to think over whatever he wants to say. “We did.” He finally says, but it sounds like he leaves something unsaid to Izuku.
Izuku can only focus on the feeling of happiness. He doesn't notice the two pairs of eyes watching him, one red, and one heterochromatic.
"I lost myself in doubt
Longing for revelation
-The World Alive, Suffocating"
All for One ends the call with Tomura, not exactly pleased with the results reported. The League had failed to capture Bakugou, because of Izuku of all people, had gotten in the way. It seems he also took out Muscular as well. While it was quite...surprising, All for One isn’t entirely pleased with the results. Another opportunity wasted, it seems.
However, he tries to think about it like this; if one were to judge a person on how easily they completed a task, there’d be no point in teaching them. One must grow discouraged and face defeat before they can truly rise above and conquer. In Tomura’s case, this is true.
In Izuku’s case? Well, he doesn’t exactly fit this way of thinking. Izuku is like a wild card thrown into a pile of queens and kings. Everything can be going according to plan, but throw in a wild card and the game is in the hands of fate. All for One never knows what to expect from his son. It isn’t a bad thing, however. It’s what Izuku needs in order to grow and evolve, especially if he wants to fulfill the task All for One has for him.
“An ambush assault on the boot camp that was meant to prepare them for battle with villains...we need to acknowledge the disgrace.” Principle Nezu states, eyeing the teachers in the conference room. “Last time we were talking about how we feared that villains were surging, but that was just us being naive. In point of fact, they had already begun their little war--their war to destroy hero society that is.”
“Even if we’d realized that, we can’t be sure we would’ve been able to prevent this. Who could have foreseen such a relentless, rapid succession of attacks…” Midnight cuts in. “I mean, ever since All Might came onto the scene, organized crime like that got almost totally weeded out…”
“And while we were none the wiser, that peace got us complacent !” Present Mic exclaims. “We only thought we’d have time to prepare them. I’m furious at my own shiftlessness..”
“While the students were putting up a desperate fight, I was resting, doing nothing .” Toshinori mumbles, holding his head in his hands, the guilt eating away at him.
“To think we’d go ahead with the Sports Festival right after the first ambush...but now, we can no longer take the position not to yield. Those cads took society’s trust in heroes away.” Snipe interjects, sighing.
“Actually, the media is already ablaze with criticism of U.A.” Nezu helpfully points out, holding a few articles slandering the school’s name.
“Yo, speaking of trust, can I just take this opportunity to say...that there’s no doubt about it anymore. There’s gotta be a traitor in our midst.” Mic says, and the room goes eerily silent. “Nobody knew where the lodge was except the teachers here and the Pussycats themselves! That ain’t the only thing that smells! For example, even a student could have sent out the location using their phone.”
“Drop it, Mic.” Midnight says, frowning.
“Like hell I’m dropping it!” Mic exclaims. “Let’s bring it all out now! All thorough like!”
“Can you show any one of us one hundred percent proof you’re not the traitor? Can you say for sure if any of us here are innocent?” Snipe cuts in.
“If we turn on each other with eyes of suspicion, we’ll just crumble from within. We shouldn’t go rushing into some traitor witch hunt.”
“At the very least, I trust all of you. Although I can’t prove that I’m innocent either. That being said, for the time being what this school needs is to do is guarantee the safety of our students. Based also on the concern of a traitor...I’ve been thinking about it for quite some time.” Nezu says. “As such, we’ll be moving ahead implementing a strategy that I’ve given yet more thought…”
“Next is Midoriya, right?” Aizawa asks, and Toshinori nods. Nezu is implementing a dormitory system for the school so that they can keep a closer eye on their students. Aizawa and himself were tasked with going to each student of 1-A and speaking with their parents, while Nezu and Vlad spoke with 1-B. They had just finished speaking with Bakugou and his parents, and now it was Midoriya’s turn. For some reason, Toshinori finds himself drifting to the night the young boy had called him, crying inconsolably.
“Say...Aizawa,” Toshinori begins, unsure of how to approach the topic. “Have you...noticed anything off about young Midoriya?”
Aizawa glances at him, frowning. “He’s been a bit more spacey in class.” Is all he says. “Have you noticed anything?”
Toshinori opens his mouth, intending to tell him about the call, but thinks better of it. It’ll raise suspicion from Aizawa that neither he, nor Midoriya needs. So, he settles for, “He seems more withdrawn, lately.” Aizawa hums and nods.
The two fall quiet while continuing the drive to Midoriya’s house. When they arrive, they’re met with a small, but welcoming home. To call the house small might be an unfair statement, but when compared to the larger houses beside it, it did look quite small. There is one window beside the soft brown painted door. The bright color of the house itself practically invites the two teachers in. On the lawn is a row of well kept flowers, and miniature lanterns stuck in the ground. It looks like the average home for a family. Yet even though the house feels small and welcoming, it also leaves a lingering feeling of something being off kitler. To Toshinori, it feels too perfect.
With each step closer to the front door, it becomes more obvious to Toshinori that something here is off. Coming closer to the house, it seems larger. The paint looks darker, and the lanterns grow dim. Toshinori feels a sense of foreboding, and is it just a trick of the eye or are the flowers beginning to wilt? He feels...on edge, and he wonders why that is.
As Aizawa leads him up to the front door, Toshinori can practically feel the atmosphere around the house shift, as if the house is coming alive, shadowed hands clawing at him, stealing his breath. It’s threatening, and overwhelming. Toshinori can’t help but feel like he’s felt this energy before. Aizawa reaches the door and knocks.
Standing at the door, both Toshinori and Aizawa can feel the energy like hands reaching out, drawing closer to them, denying them the truth about the home they were about to enter.
The longer they wait, the more guarded they become. Toshinori feels sweat start to drip down the side of his face, and he sees Aizawa’s hand start to twitch. He feels uncomfortable standing in front of the house. He feels as if there is a devastatingly powerful villain approaching the door, as if they were going to be violently ripped apart. Toshinori tenses up, as does Aizawa, the two preparing for a fight. They share a look, and Aizawa looks at him with narrowed eyes, and Toshinori can tell he feels the malice as well. The door opens a few minutes later, and Toshinori gets hit with a stronger sense of that power, but there is something sinister about it. He feels threatened.
When the door opens fully, young Midoriya stands there, eyes wide open. They feel the power shrink back. The mood shifts once more, and it is as if the violent malice of the air is gone, the hands no longer reaching for their throats. Toshinori and Aizawa share another look, and they let themselves relax. “M-Mr. Aizawa?! All Might?!” Midoriya exclaims in surprise.
“Hello young Midoriya!” Toshinori greets shakily, clearly still uncomfortable in the presence of the home. Wearily, he looks around, seeing bright lanterns and perfectly healthy flowers. When his eyes finally land on Midoriya, he tries to ignore the guilt gnawing at him at the sight of Midoriya’s injuries. One of his arms is wrapped in bandages, as is his head. The boy steps aside, letting the two pros walk into the house. Midoriya leads them to the living room and they sit down on the couch. He quietly excuses himself and Toshinori takes the time to observe.
The first thing he notices is the lack of pictures on the walls, or in general. One of the things he’s noticed when visiting families is that everyone had family photos or photos of their children almost everywhere, but not here. There isn’t much in the house, just the bare necessities. He wonders if Midoriya’s room is like this. Did he have much? Or is his room just as barren as the rest of the house? Toshinori notices how sad the house feels. He finds that he doesn’t like it, no house should ever feel this sad. Especially if it’s a house Midoriya is living in. The boy is practically the sun incarnate, he should be somewhere that’s equally as bright as him.
“All Might, Mr. Aizawa, it’s a pleasure to meet you.” The voice snaps Toshinori from his thoughts and he sees young Midoriya standing beside a man that looks very similar to him. The man has freckles just like Midoriya’s, but instead of forest green hair, his hair is black. His eyes are green and he’s seated in a wheelchair.
“Mr. Midoriya.” Aizawa greets. Young Midoriya wheels his father over to them, before taking a seat next to him.
“I’m assuming you’re both here about the dormitory?” Mr. Midoriya asks, and the teachers nod. “You have my permission.” He says. Toshinori sees young Midoriya’s shoulders sag, and if he didn’t know any better, he’d say they sagged in relief. However, he does know better, and it’s not relief Toshinori sees. It’s something else that he can’t quite put his finger on and it worries him.
“U.A. thanks you for your cooperation, Mr. Midoriya.” Aizawa says, bowing. Toshinori bows as well.
“You have my thanks for giving Izuku quite the education.” Mr. Midoriya responds with a smile. “He’s truly shaping into quite the successor for the heroes.” He says, “I look forward to seeing his growth.”
“Well, young Midoriya is a wonderful student to have, sir.” Toshinori compliments with a smile of his own.
“If you’ll excuse us,” Aizawa says, rising from the couch. “There are still a few families we have to visit.” Toshinori stands as well, finding himself glancing at young Midoriya.
“Please, allow me to lead you out.” Mr. Midoriya says, using his wheelchair to lead them to the door. As Mr. Midoriya leads them to the door, Toshinori feels the malice from before start to creep up on him. The overwhelming feeling of power is back. Mr. Midoriya doesn’t say anything to them until they are standing outside the door. “All Might?” He begins. “I’d hate it if anything were to happen to Izuku. Please continue to watch over him.” The smile on Mr. Midoriya’s face doesn’t seem as cheery as he makes it out to be and Toshinori does a double take. The vicious aura has returned and Toshinori tenses. When he blinks, the man is smiling at him happily, the vicious air gone. He wonders if it is a trick of the eye again. “Is something the matter, All Might?” Mr. Midoriya asks as Toshinori glances around.
“Ah, no. It just feels as if there’s a storm coming.” He lies, giving the man a tense smile.
“Well, be careful not to get caught up in the rain.” Mr. Midoriya says, before heading back inside. Toshinori turns to Aizawa and he lets out a breath, shoulders relaxing.
As they get into the car, and sit down, Toshinori can’t help but frown. “There’s something off about young Midoriya’s father.” He says.
“You got that feeling too, then?” Aizawa questions, crossing his arms as he looks out the window. He watches the house go by as the driver begins to drive.
“I got more than one feeling, that’s for sure.” Toshinori replies as he powers down. There are still a few more families to visit, and he doesn’t want to exhaust himself. “I felt as if we were going to be killed back there.”
“Midoriya’s father...he’s definitely hiding something .” Aizawa mumbles, leaning back in his seat. Toshinori can’t help nod in agreement.
“I don’t think we’ll ever find out, though. I’m just glad he’s allowing young Midoriya to move into the dorms.” Toshinori says, running a hand down his face. Aizawa nods silently and they continue on their way, storing away their suspicions. For now, they have to focus on the task at hand. Their theories can be dealt with another day.
"Don't know if this will help
There's more to this than me
-The World Alive, Suffocating"
Izuku stares in awe at the entrance of Heights Alliance, where class 1-A will be staying for the rest of their time at U.A. It almost surprises Izuku how quickly the school was able to build the dorms for the students. Although, the thought doesn’t entirely surprise him, since it’s U.A. Ignoring his thoughts, he heads over to Uraraka and Iida. “I’m glad everyone was able to get their parents permission.” Uraraka says, smiling.
Iida nods in agreement. “Yes!” He exclaims, his hand doing it’s usual chopping motion. “I’m relieved to see that our class was able to avoid being split up!” He exclaims. Izuku just nods in agreement, he’s too stuck in his head at the moment. The only reason why his father let him move into the dorms was to get more information. He doesn’t want to, but what choice does he have? He’s too worried about the consequence if he doesn’t do what his father tells him to. The conversation they had after the USJ attack proving that.
“Midoriya,” Todoroki says, pulling Izuku from his thoughts. When Izuku looks at Todoroki, he sees him standing beside him.
Izuku gives him a strained smile. “Good morning, Todoroki.” He greets.
“There’s something I need to talk to you about.” Todoroki says, with a very apparent urgency in his voice. Izuku glances around, as if to see if anyone else heard the urgency. He spots Uraraka looking at Todoroki strangely, but before he can really focus on it, Todoroki pulls him aside.
Worried, Izuku puts his attention back on Todoroki. Forgetting about whatever is going through his own head, he looks at him with concern, “Is something wrong?”
“Midoriya, I-” Todoroki is cut off by Aizawa calling everyone’s attention. “Ah, nevermind.” Todoroki mumbles, as the tour of the dorms begin. Still worried about his classmate, Izuku falls in line with everyone else.
“When the dorms were constructed, they were designed with the intent of a class being assigned to each building. There’s even a building set up for the teachers.” Aizawa explains as they enter their dorm. “The first floor is a co-ed space. The mess hall, baths, laundry stuff and the likes are here on the first floor.”
Izuku suddenly has a bad feeling. His eyes drift over to Mineta, and the boy is practically drooling. Ever vigilant, Aizawa looks directly at the boy as he explains, “For those with immature minds, the boys’ and girls’ bathing and laundry areas are separated.” Izuku watches as Mineta practically deflates in disappointment.
“So much space, and it’s so nice!” Ashido cries in excitement. They’re currently standing in the common room. There are two couches, and a few padded benches around a table. “Oh my god look, a sofa!” The television is in the corner, and next to the common room is the kitchen. In the kitchen is four tables, an oven, a stove, and a fridge.
“Hey, check it out, there’s a courtyard!” Sero exclaims, staring out one of the large windows, where the courtyard is in the center of the building. Surrounded by the walls of the building, the students are given extra protection in the courtyard. It looks like a typical one, there are trees and flowers lining the walkway, and in the middle of the courtyard there are benches arranged in a curricular fashion.
“I’m in a mansion, a palace .” Uraraka whispers, staggering. She looks like as if she’s in a daze. Clearly, she isn’t used to such...high class living standards.
Ever the one to be on alert, Iida cries out in alarm, “Uraraka!” as he reaches out to steady her. Iida’s cry shakes her out of her daze, and Uraraka is able to steady herself. Though she is still looking at everything in awe, at least Izuku doesn’t have to worry about her, knowing that she’s under Iida’s watchful gaze.
“The dorms are located from the second floor up. Each floor has two groups of four rooms, half for boys, half for girls, up to the fifth floor. The right side is for the girls and the left is for the boys. Elevators and stairs are found at the back of the dorm.” As Izuku figured, sure enough, after giving everyone enough time to look around, Aizawa calls for their attention as he leads them to the elevator.
From the elevator, Aizawa takes them to one of the rooms. “Midoriya,” He calls out, “This will be your room.” Izuku looks around curiously. Inside is a desk, a dresser, a bed, and two glass doors that lead to a small porch. “Each individual room is outfitted with air conditioning, a toilet, a fridge, and a closet. It’s pretty luxurious.” Aizawa explains.
Kaminari runs over to the doors, throws them open, and bursts out onto the porch. Leaning over the railing, he exclaims, “The view from here is awesome!” Izuku joins Kaminari out on the porch, and he finds himself agreeing with him.
Suddenly, Izuku feels an elbow, then a hand, then a knee, as all of his classmates try to jam together on the porch. The porch is rather small, so there isn’t a lot of room. “Hey, hey! Watch where you’re pushing! I’m gonna fal—AHHH!” Izuku hears Mineta scream, and he tries to find where he is. Mineta’s scream stops suddenly, and Izuku is able to see one of Jirou’s earphone jacks wrapped around his wrist. “Oh, thank you, Jirou!” He cries. In a voice just loud enough for Kaminari to hear, “I’ll worship only you and your tiny boobs forever!”
“I should’ve let you fall.” Jirou mutters, disgusted.
Face palming, Aizawa sighs. “If you’re done messing around, let’s move on.” Everyone slowly comes out of the room, and they put their attention on their teacher. “The rooms have been assigned as we saw fit. All of the luggage we had you send us beforehand should be in your respective rooms. For the time being, go get all your stuff set in your rooms. I’ll explain what we’ll be doing next tomorrow. You are dismissed.”
Setting up his room isn’t too hard. He doesn’t have much to begin with. Izuku puts solid blue colored sheets on his bed and the same color pillow cases on his pillows. He puts up his curtains, and takes a look at the two boxes left. One is the bookshelf he still has to set up. That should take about an hour thanks to its size. His father let him bring a lot of his books from home, which are in the second box. Izuku hadn’t thought he would. Putting his hands on his hips, Izuku lets out a dramatic sigh. Maybe it’s time for some water.
Having spent the first half of the day memorizing the dorm layout, Izuku easily finds the kitchen with no trouble. He gets out a cup from the cupboard, and water from the fridge. “Midoriya.” Todoroki says, seeing Izuku in the kitchen.
Izuku turns to look at his friend, smiling. He briefly wonders if whatever was bothering Todoroki earlier is still bugging him. “What’s up, Todoroki?” He asks. The first thing he notices is that something is off with Todoroki. His face is blank but his eyes seem to show how troubled he’s feeling. He observes how tense Todoroki looks, his body language screaming...nervousness? Why? What is Todoroki nervous about?
Before he can ask what’s wrong, Todoroki’s mouth opens and he speaks, “I have feelings for you.”
Izuku pauses, freezing up. The smile falls from his face. “W-What..?” He stammers, shocked. He hopes he didn’t hear his friend correctly.
“I have feelings for you.” Todoroki repeats, looking just as serious as before. All Izuku can do is stare, like a deer caught in headlights, because there’s no reason why class 1-A’s resident pretty boy should have feelings for Izuku , class 1-A’s unknown traitor .
Izuku barely registers his heart aching, as he looks at Todoroki. “I-I um…” Izuku stutters, “I have t-to go…” He mumbles, leaving his glass of water as he makes his way back to his room. He doesn’t stay long enough to hear Todoroki call after him, worried.
Shouto stares in confusion, not understanding what just happened. Uraraka and Ashido come out of hiding, looking just as confused as Shouto. He turns to them, “Did I say something wrong?” He questions.
“I don’t think so…” Uraraka murmurs while Ashido frowns.
“Maybe he just has to process what happened?” She offers.
“He may not feel the same way,” Shouto points out, “That may be why he ran, so that he can figure out a way to nicely turn me down.”
Uraraka vehemently shakes her head. “No way! Deku definitely likes you back, Todoroki!” She argues adamantly. “There’s probably just a lot going through his head right now...I mean, you guys can see, he hasn’t been himself lately.” She adds, frowning a little.
Ashido nods in agreement, “Some of us tried asking Bakugou, but he got mad and threatened to ‘explode our faces’, so we didn’t ask again.”
“I’ll wait for him then.” Shouto decides.
“That’s so romantic, Todoroki!” Ashido squeals, while Uraraka nods in agreement.
Meanwhile, all Izuku can think about is the growing pain in his chest, and the slamming of his door. He leans against the door, and lets himself slide to the floor as he hugs his knees. Todoroki’s words keep echoing in his mind. Why? Why does Todoroki like him? He’s done nothing but put the class in danger! He’s a villain , wearing the face of a hopeful hero! Even if he does return Todoroki’s feelings, he can’t act on them, not when his father is practically breathing down his neck for information. Does he return Todoroki’s feelings, anyways? He does, doesn’t he? The thoughts makes tears prick Izuku’s eyes and he tries to stop them, he really does. How can he start something with Todoroki, if he’s just going to end up leaving once his mission is over? Izuku can’t do that to him.
Besides, he still has to win his father’s approval, doesn’t he? He still has to show his father that he can be depended on, that he can help. ‘But what’s the point?’ A bitter part of him thinks. Will his father even willingly depend on him when he’s proved that the things Izuku wants to accomplish mean nothing to him? That he just wants to control Izuku? He probably won’t. Despite knowing this, a childish part of Izuku, the part of him that yearns for his father’s praise, still wants to earn his approval. When everything is said and done, he’s still just a little boy, trying to get his father’s attention any way he can.
Even if it means throwing his feelings and dreams aside to do it.
A few hours later, Izuku is flopping onto the couch beside Tokoyami, letting out a quiet and tired sigh. He hopes it isn’t obvious to his classmates that he’s been crying. “Whew, I’m beat.” Kirishima mumbles, leaning back against the couch. Most of the boys finished their rooms, so now they’re all sitting in the common room, relaxing.
Kaminari sits on the armrest next to Izuku, and looks at the class with a grin. “I’m really stoked we’re all gonna live so close by!” Kaminari exclaims.
“Ah, community living!” Iida exclaims, “This, too, is but another trial to nurture our discipline and cooperative spirit..!”
Sero cracks a grin, “Don’t burst a vessel there, class pres.” He jokes.
“Hey boys, you finish setting up your roms yet?” Ashido calls, the girls trailing behind her as they enter the common room.
“Yeah, we’re just chilling now.” Kaminari replies.
Ashido grins. “Sooo! We were just talking, and it’s only a suggestion, but!” She pauses, as if for dramatic effect, “Why don’t we have a competition to show off our rooms?!”
Most of the class agrees and Izuku’s room is unfortunately, up first.
He leads them to his room, shyly letting them enter. His room is quite barren, which shocks most of his class, since they know how much of a hero fanboy he is. He has a bookshelf with his analysis journals, his desk, his bed, and a single poster. It’s a poster of All Might that clearly looks like it’s been through a lot. A corner of the poster is ripped, and the coloring looks faded.
“Wow,” Kaminari whistles, looking around, “For such a hero fanboy, I’m kind of surprised, Midoriya.” He admits, Sero and Kirishima nodding in agreement.
All Izuku can do is scratch the back of his head and awkwardly laugh.
After Izuku’s room is Tokoyami’s. He leans against the door, arms crossed. Ashido and Hagakure are not dismayed as they try to push him out of the way. Eventually, it works, and the class is standing inside of Tokoyami’s room. “So scary! Everything’s black!”
“You little…” Tokoyami grumbles, standing beside his dresser. The room looks like it belongs to someone who practices the dark arts.
“Yo, I bought this keyholder back in middle school!” Kirishima exclaims, holding one of the keychains.
“I guess guys really like this kinda stuff.” Ashido murmurs.
“So cool…” Izuku utters, looking at the swords Tokoyami has.
After Tokoyami is Aoyama, and his room is quite...dazzling. The other people on the second floor is Mineta. Everyone skips Mineta in favor of Ojiro, looking at the teen’s normal room. Next is Iida’s room and it’s packed full of books and multiple shelves of glasses. Kaminari’s room is quite kitschy, and Kouda’s room has all of the girls squealing and cooing at the bunny he has.
“Look!” Uraraka exclaims, holding the bunny carefully to Izuku. “It’s Deku!” She giggles, and soon enough, the other girls are cooing and giggling as well. Izuku’s face flushes a bright red, and he accidentally makes eye contact with Todoroki. He immediately looks away, feeling saddened.
They move onto Kirishima’s room, which has the essence of ‘manliness’. Shouji’s room is similar to Izuku’s in a way, it’s barren except for the necessities one needs in a room. After Shouji’s room, it’s Sero’s, and his room carries an asian vibe to it. Todoroki’s room is the second to last one they go to, and it seems like it’s been completely redone. The flooring is replaced, as are the doors that lead to the small balcony the student’s have.
“How the hell did you renovate your entire room the day you moved in?!” Mineta and Kaminari exclaim.
“I worked hard.” Is all Todoroki says in reply.
“WHAT IS THIS GUY?!”
Lastly, they go to Satou’s room, where he has a miniature oven and fridge. In the end, everyone gets a small piece of cake, and the girls are quite happy.
Once all of the boys rooms were done, they moved onto the girls rooms. First is Jirou’s room, filled with a lot of music related things such as instruments and cds. Next is Hagakure’s and there’s a lot of cuteness and stuffed animals. Ashido’s room is incredibly pink, and Uraraka’s room is somewhat bland but nice and roomy. They skip over Tsuyu’s room, Uraraka telling them that Tsuyu isn’t feeling all that great.
The last room they go to is Yaoyorozu’s and it’s incredibly cramped. Her bed takes up most of the space and she seems quite embarrassed about it. After everyone has showed off their rooms, they all sit in the common room. Everyone writes down their votes, sans Izuku. He isn’t really in the mood for this, but he stays anyway.
“Okay!” Ashido exclaims. “Did everyone put in their vote?” She asks, and everyone nods. “And now! Excluding Bakugou and Tsuyu, it’s time to present who the number one ranking of the first annual king of all rooms contest is!” She cheers. “With a total of six votes! The room that beat out everyone by a large margin and emerged the sole victor is…” Ashido pauses for dramatic effect, “Rikidou Satou!”
“Whaaa?!” Satou exclaims, shocked. Izuku watches as Mineta and Kaminari argue about how Satou won, a small smile on his face. He’s glad to see everyone happy and getting along, especially after what happened at the camp. At the thought of the camp, the smile falls from Izuku’s face. He stands up from the couch, waving a small goodnight to Iida and Uraraka, avoiding Todoroki almost completely.
He misses their worried glances as he leaves.
"Can't find my way out
I deserve an explanation
-The World Alive, Suffocating"
“Hisashi I don’t— I don’t understand, why are you taking him?”
“He’s my son.”
“Don’t take him away, please! Hisashi, I’m begging you, don’t take him from me! You can’t do this! Why are you doing this?! I—I thought we were a family!”
“You must be joking. You were nothing but a pawn in my game of chess.”
He hears someone crying, a baby maybe?
“That’ll be enough of that. Sleep.”
Izuku shoots up from his bed, gasping for air, a hand clutching at his shirt. In his head he sees green hair and emerald eyes filled with tears. He doesn’t understand what he’s been seeing in his dreams. It bothers him. Maybe if he could make more sense of his dreams, he could make sense of the story his father has been telling him all of his life.
Izuku puts his head in his hands, and he does what he does best. He thinks , and when he can’t think anymore, he looks at the clock and reads the time. He sighs and decides it’s time for his morning run.
“Ah, young Midoriya!” All Might exclaims as Izuku draws closer to the dorms. Confused by the hero’s appearance, he speeds up a bit before he stands in front his teacher. He notes that All Might is in his powered down form.
“All Might,” Izuku replies, “Good morning!”
“Good morning!” All Might echoes. “I’d like to speak with you, if that’s alright my boy?” Izuku nods in response, and All Might motions for them to start walking. “It’s been a while since we’ve discussed how much progress you’ve made with One for All.” He says and Izuku releases the breath he never realized he was holding. He’s been a lot more jumpy around All Might lately. “Let’s see…” The hero hums. “Since the Sports Festival, you’ve been able to use eight percent, right?”
Izuku nods. “Yeah.” He replies. “And when I interned with Gran Torino, I came up with ‘Full Cowl’.” He adds. “And when I fought Stain I started to develop my ‘Shoot Style’.” He recaps.
All Might hums again. “How did you come up with your ‘Shoot Style’ anyways my boy? I don’t believe we went over it…”
“Ah...oh um,” Izuku glances around. “When I was fighting Stain...I wasn’t able to fight with my arms, and I saw Todoroki use his ice with his foot and I kinda came up with things from there.” He explains, ignoring the way his chest aches at the mention of Todoroki.
“You never fail to amaze me, young Midoriya.” All Might says, and Izuku feels a hand patting his hair. It’s an odd feeling. He’s had his head patted before by his father, but he never got this feeling of warmth from it like he does when All Might pats his head. Thinking of his father makes him think back to the dream he had before he woke up, and Izuku frowns. “Something wrong, my boy?” All Might asks.
“Oh um...i-it’s nothing!” Izuku exclaims, waving his hands dismissively.
All Might frowns this time. “It isn’t nothing if it bothers you, Midoriya.” He replies. “You can talk to me about whatever’s on your mind.”
Izuku bites the inside of his cheek nervously. He rubs his hands together, looking at the ground. “I had a dream...or..maybe it was a nightmare, I’m not quite sure. But...I hear this voice, a woman’s voice, and she sounds so...heartbroken. I can hear her wailing, calling out to someone, begging them not to take someone away.” He slowly begins. “Her voice sounds...familiar, but I’m not sure why it does. I feel like it could be my mother, but that wouldn’t make sense. She died right after I was born.”
All Might frowns again, looking at Izuku with sad eyes. “Perhaps you have a few memories of her before she died.” He suggests. “Or maybe it’s just your brain coming up with weird dreams to unsettle you.” He adds. “I wouldn’t look into it too much for now, not when there seems to be pieces of the puzzle missing.”
Izuku nods in reply. “Yeah, That makes sense.” He agrees.
All Might puts a gentle hand on his shoulder and Izuku can’t help but think ‘Is this what a father is like?’ The thought startles him, but he finds that he doesn’t mind it that much.
School started back up, and Izuku began to wear a small sleeve to cover the new scar on his arm. He didn’t want to call attention to it, nor did he want the constant reminder of what he almost did to Muscular. So before putting his uniform shirt on, he slipped the sleeve on over his scar. After getting ready, he headed to class by himself, feeling too exhausted to mingle with his classmates, especially Todoroki. He felt bad about the confession still. It wasn’t like he doesn’t reciprocate the boy’s feelings, he definitely does. It’s just that he’s a villain, and he doesn’t deserve someone like Todoroki.
During class, Aizawa tells everyone that they’d begin working on special moves to get their provisional hero licenses. Together with Ectoplasm, Cementoss, Midnight and Aizawa himself, they’d be making at least two special moves.
It tired Izuku out, to say the least. At least the training keeps his mind off of things.
‘Deku, come outside later.’ The words ring through Izuku’s head as he looks out the window of his room. He had been sitting in his room, doing homework when Bakugou came into his room and demanded he’d meet him later. Izuku was confused, but agreed.
He then looks out the door, making sure no one is still awake. It’d be bad if someone is still awake, Izuku isn’t sure he’d know how to explain himself if he were to get caught. Once he makes sure the coast is clear, he sneaks out, finding Bakugou already waiting outside the dorms.
“Tch, took you long enough, nerd.” He says, glancing at him.
Izuku frowns. “I was trying to avoid getting caught.” He shoots back. Without saying anything in reply, Bakugou begins walking and Izuku follows after him. After they walk far away from the dorms, and Izuku sees Bakugou is still walking, Izuku looks at him in confusion. “Hey...how far away are you trying to go?” He asks. “You still haven’t told me why we’re meeting in the dark like this, and we shouldn’t be walking around outside at night like this.” Bakugou ignores him and continues walking. Izuku sighs, frowning again. He decides to just stay silent until Bakugou leads him to wherever he wants to go.
When they do finally stop, Izuku looks up in confusion. “This place...it’s Ground Beta…” He mumbles.
“This is where I fought you for the very first time in combat training...and lost.” Bakugou says, his hands in his pockets. “All this time, just thinking about it made me sick to my damn stomach.” He goes on, “You were just some quirkless nerd, and somehow you got accepted to U.A., and by some miracle your crazy old man stopped homeschooling you to put you in this school. And by an even bigger miracle, your quirk manifested out of thin air, right?” Bakugou says it as if he’s asking Izuku, rather than stating facts. “The whole damn time...it pissed me off. It disgusted me!”
“What in the world are you talking about?” Izuku asks, confused.
“After our fight, I started watching you, Deku. The more I looked, the more things about you started to piss me off. Your sudden annoying confidence while fighting, your damn quirk, even the way that you and All Might interact!” Bakugou exclaims and Izuku feels not only panic but surprise. “But what pisses me off the most, is the fact that ever since the training camp, you’ve been acting like an unconfident little shit!”
Izuku stares at Bakugou with more surprise. Was this is his way of showing that he cares? Why? It isn’t like the two are super close anymore, so why would it matter to Bakugou? “Why are you telling me all of this?” He asks.
Bakugou gives him a glare. “Because it’s pissing me the hell off! What the fuck is going on with you nerd?! One minute you’re spouting off some nonsense about wanting to prove yourself, telling me that you’re my equal, and now you’re acting like you don’t belong here! Make up your damn mind!”
Once more, Izuku is shocked. Bakugou has certainly matured since starting U.A. He sighs quietly, and looks at Bakugou. He isn’t sure what to say in reply. How can he handle this situation? What can he say to get himself out of this mess? “It’s nothing.” He settles on.
“You really piss me off!” Bakugou exclaims before lighting off explosions with his hands and charging for Izuku.
“H-Hey!” Izuku yelps, stammering as he draws closer. “What the hell?!” He exclaims, seeing Bakugou ready his right hand for an attack. Narrowing his eyes, Izuku dodges the attack, using One for All.
“I’ll just have to beat the answer outta you then!” Bakugou shouts, aiming his palms at the ground and setting off an explosion. Izuku doesn’t time to yell at him, he can only focus on dodging. Bakugou’s attacks are relentless and Izuku can barely think. Bakugou charges for him, using the smoke as a cover. Acting on instinct, Izuku’s hand finds its place on Bakugou’s throat and Izuku’s eyes go wide as he freezes. He sees a flash of a bloody face, an artificial eye, and water. Izuku’s hesitation gives Bakugou a chance to swing his leg around and kick Izuku in the face. This snaps Izuku out of his trance and he lands on his hands on the ground, flipping himself over and landing a kick on Bakugou. The two land on the ground and they both stand up.
Bakugou charges immediately for Izuku, and Izuku realizes Bakugou isn’t going to stop until one of them wins. Sighing, Izuku uses his leg to attack, kicking Bakugou right in the face when he was close enough. “Alright then…” Izuku sighs, “I wanted to if ‘Shoot Style’ would work well against you anyway.” He says, and he can’t help but think about how unsurprising this fight is. Whenever Bakugou is angry, his first instinct is to fight, even he’s trying to be civil. “If you wanna go, then there’s no holding back.”
Bakugou uses his explosions to send him into the air, and attacks Izuku from above. Izuku dodges last second, jumping to the left and Bakugou hits the ground. Without hesitation, Bakugou attacks him again, spinning himself to create a mini cyclone of explosions that push Izuku back. ‘By the time he lands, he can completely close the distance! Not good!’ Izuku notes as he jumps back. ‘I’ll have to deflect his hand and--’ Suddenly Bakugou is behind him and Izuku spots him last second. Bakugou punches his stomach and Izuku collides with a railing behind him. Bakugou immediately goes for him again, and Izuku uses the railing to flip himself over, but Bakugou grabs his arm and flings him. Izuku lands on the ground, and can’t help his small smirk. “I know I’m stating the obvious, but, you’re really getting stronger.”
“The hell are you smirking about?!” Bakugou shouts, his explosion sending Izuku to the ground. Izuku immediately gets up and before he can even plan an attack, Bakugou fires off an attack that blinds him. He then punches Izuku, sending him into the air. Izuku lands easily on his feet, and powers One for All in his legs. He uses eight percent and grins as he exclaims, “I finally caught up to you!” He can see Bakugou hesitating, trying to figure out how to deflect his attack, but Izuku is too fast. Before Bakugou can throw his arms up to defend himself, Izuku’s kick lands and Bakugou is sent back. This doesn’t seem to sway Bakugou much, as he comes running forward again. He roars as he sets off an explosion, and Izuku is pushed back.
It’s Izuku’s turn to run for Bakugou, exclaiming, “That all you got?!” As he leaps into the air.
“WHATTT?!” Bakugou shouts, charging for him. Izuku clenches a fist just as Bakugou does. ‘I’m sure in Bakugou’s head, ‘Shoot Style’ has been strongly ingrained with a stupidly straight-forward charge kick sequence. ‘Shoot Style’ is a way to fight, and it’s my style of fighting.’
Both Izuku and Bakugou throw fists at the same time and they hit each other in the face. Both are panting harshly, covered in sweat and scratches. They’re both tired and nearly out of energy. They look at each other before falling to the ground, exhausted. Izuku stares up at the night sky as he catches his breath, glancing over at Bakugou. “Mr. Aizawa is gonna be so mad.” Is the first thing that comes out of Izuku’s mouth.
“Tch, shut the hell up.” Bakugou grumbles.
They lay there in silence before Izuku speaks again. “Y’know, I meant what I said when we fought for the first time. I really did look up to you when we were kids.”
Bakugou doesn’t reply at first, but when he utters a quiet, “I know.” Izuku almost misses it. Almost. He then hears Bakugou sigh. “Listen, stupid Deku, cause I’m only gonna say this once!”
“I’m listening.” Izuku replies.
“I’m sorry.” Bakugou says through clenched teeth and Izuku looks at him in surprise, eyes wide. Never once did he think Bakugou would ever apologize. “I was an arrogant little prick back then...and I felt threatened by you, for some stupid reason.” Bakugou adds, grumbling.
“Thank you,” Izuku murmurs, “Kacchan.” When he’s feeling like some of his energy is back, Izuku stands up and offers a hand to Bakugou. “I’m sorry, too.” He says, and Bakugou clicks his tongue before accepting his hand. Izuku pulls him up and smiles a bit. “Let’s just agree that this was both of our faults and move on, yeah?”
“Sure, whatever.” Bakugou grumbles in reply.
“Neither of you are to blame, young Midoriya, young Bakugou.” All Might cuts in, suddenly appearing next to them. Izuku yelps in surprise.
“A-All Might!” He stammers.
“You’re right,” Someone else says, and Izuku knows that voice. Slowly, he looks at the person who spoke, feeling All Might tense up next to him. “The fault is mine.” In front of them stands a man, wearing an all black mask, and a suit. Izuku’s never seen him before, but he feels like he knows the man.
“All for One…” All Might growls, and Izuku’s blood runs cold.
Oh no .
"Off in the unknown
Aimless, but tired of being alone
-The World Alive, Branded"
Izuku stares ahead, seeing All for One. He finds himself glancing at Bakugou, and Bakugou glancing at him as well. They know who this man is. Izuku’s lived with this man for the past fifteen years. It’s his father . Sweat rolls down his face as he stands, frozen. Just like that time when his father confronted him, Izuku can sense the overwhelming power and strength of the man, yet it’s at least ten times more overwhelming. How has he never noticed his father’s aura like this before?
Izuku watches as his mentor takes off, charging for All for One. He uses two of his fists to attack, but All for One catches both. “Come now, that was far too slow for you.” All for One says, as the ground cracks beneath them. Izuku gapes at the sheer power the two have. “You’ve become quite weak, All Might.”
“Right back at you. Wanna fill me in on that mask?! When did your neck sprout an industrial zone?! You certain you’re not overexerting yourself?!” All Might shouts back. Izuku can’t help but stare in surprise at his mentor. He’s never heard his mentor sound so...angry. It shakes Izuku down to his core. “I won’t make the same mistake I made five years ago, All for One.”
All for One raises his arm up. “Is that so…” He muses. “Then it’d seem you have a dreadful number of things to do. As do I.” His arm grows in size and he fires off an attack at All Might, sending him flying back.
“All Might!” Izuku and Bakugou cry. All Might crashes into one of the buildings at Ground Beta. Izuku briefly wonders if any of the teachers would be showing up. Mr. Aizawa and the others probably will, right?
“Air propulsion plus musculoskeletal coiling, four instantaneous impact quirks, and three physical strength amplification quirks, this combination is a fun one...perhaps I shall pile on a few more amplifier quirks…” All for One hums.
“All Might!” Bakugou screams out.
“Don’t worry, he won’t die from a lovetap like that.” All for One says, looking at Bakugou. All Might runs forward again, trying to land a hit on All for One. Black fingers extend from All for One’s hand and they shove All Might backwards, and to the ground. Both Izuku and Bakugou are frozen, legs refusing to move. They can’t do anything but stare. All Might gets up and punches All for One’s face.
“All Might!” Toshinori hears Aizawa and a few of the other teachers, and he sees them running over to where he and All for One are fighting.
‘No!’ He thinks, ‘I can’t let them get hurt too!’ So he looks over at them, and yells, “Don’t get involved! This is my fight! Make sure the students are safe!” He commands, dodging a punch from All for One. He knows he can’t fully unleash his power with young Midoriya and young Bakugou here. They can get injured if he does this. He sees Aizawa run for the two boys, as he lands a punch on All for One. He coughs into his hand and takes a moment to watch Aizawa get young Midoriya and young Bakugou to safety. ‘Now I’m totally free,’ He thinks. ‘Now I can defeat him.’ Toshinori charges forward, but is blown back by an attack from All for One.
“I despise you, All Might.” His enemy says. “You crushed all of my comrades with those fists, one by one. Then the world sang your praises as the ‘Symbol of Peace’.” His arm expands once more, as he charges his attack. “Your view of standing atop the mound of our dead must be nice, surely?” Just as All for One fires his attack, Toshinori counters it with his own, but All for One nearly overpowers him. The sleeve of his shirt is tarnished, and the ground beneath is uprooted and sent flying. “As if I’d let you fight as ‘freely’ as you’d like.” All for One says as Toshinori tries to regain his barrenings. “Heroes always have so many things that need protecting--”
“Shut up.” Toshinori says, scowling. He grabs All for One’s arm tightly. “That’s how you always toy with others!” He exclaims. “You destroy them! And rob them! You use them and dominate them! All the while sneering down from your wanton perch at those who live their day to day lives! I will never allow such evil!” Toshinori shouts, his punch breaking All for One’s mask as he pins him down. He sees the steam around them and winces. He can feel himself beginning to power down, and he curses. ‘I’m at my limit…!’
“How awfully sentimental , All Might.” All for One says. “Truth be told, I’ve heard more or less the same lines before. Your successor...the next holder of One for All…” Toshinori’s eyes widen. How does All for One know he has a successor? “Izuku Midoriya.”
“How do you know his name?!” Toshinori finds himself asking.
“What would you do if I told you he’s not who you think he is?” All for One says instead, and Toshinori stares at him, tensing up. What is All for One talking about? “There’s quite the burden Izuku is carrying, isn’t there?”
Toshinori feels anger bubbling in his chest, and he pulls his arm back. “ENOUGH!” He yells, but before he could punch him, All for One uses an attack to send him into the air. He coughs up blood as he flies. He lands harshly on the ground, crying out in pain.
“Dammit, All Might, don’t lose your cool now!” He hears Aizawa scolding him. “Your the number one hero for god’s sake! Get up!”
Aizawa is right. Toshinori stands up, wincing in pain. He doesn’t realize it but there’s a helicopter flying overhead, catching everything that’s going on. “He’s worked so diligently, but perhaps it’s acceptable for me to deal the final blow…” All for One throws his arms out. “But you do realize, All Might that just as you hate me, I too hate you?” He says, and Toshinori briefly wonders where the man is going with all of this. “Certainly, I killed your master, but you robbed me of all that I worked to amass. That’s why I want you to die the most savage, ugly death possible!” Toshinori sees All for One’s arm expand once more and he prepares to jump out of the way. All for One sees this and asks, “Are you sure you want to dodge it?” Toshinori looks to the side of him and sees Aizawa and the others. He makes eye contact with young Midoriya, and he knows he can’t move. He can’t let them get hurt. “I shall snatch away all the things you’ve been protecting.”
Toshinori takes the hit head on.
“Starting with the pride you took in soldiering on despite your injuries.” When the smoke clears, they don’t see All Might. They see a skeletal man wearing All Might’s clothes. “Show the world how pitiful you really look, oh Symbol of Peace.” Toshinori pants harshly, trying to ignore the pain and catch his breath. “Your cheeks hollow, your eyes sunken! What a scrawny ‘Top Hero’ you’ve become! But don’t be embarrassed, that’s your true form , isn’t it?!”
Toshinori’s eyes narrow as he stares at All for One. “That how you see it?” He asks. “Well, however much my body may be withering away...and however much that’s been exposed for all to see…” He clenches his fist. “My heart is still the heart of the Symbol of Peace! That heart isn’t something you could ever take the smallest piece away from!”
“Magnificent!” All for One cheers, clapping his hands. “How could I forget that childish obstinacy of yours?” He stops clapping, holding out his hands instead. “I wonder if your heart will remain unscathed after you hear this...you see…” He pauses and Toshinori feels a sense of dread for some reason. “Izuku Midoriya is my son.” Toshinori’s eyes widen, he doesn’t know if it’s in horror or disbelief. He finds himself looking over to young Midoriya, and he sees the boy staring in shock, and there’s guilt in his eyes. “This entire time, I’ve been devising that which would upset you. For years, I’ve wondered what would hit you the most, and I thought, what if you had a successor, whom you put your faith in blindly, only for them to give me your power, and destroy your faith?”
“You lie…” Toshinori mumbles, shock causing him to stand completely still.
“Oh, but it is the truth. Surely you don’t doubt that it’s something I would do, do you?” All for One asks. He puts his thumbs on his cheeks, mimicking pushing them up into a smile. “What’s this, All Might? How odd...whatever happened to that smile?” All for One questions. “Just as I thought...how delightful!” The villain chuckles. Toshinori looks at him, still processing the information. All for One sees the look of horror on the hero’s face. “I did manage to rob you of a precious little piece of your heart!” The villain cheers, pleased with himself. “Well, I guess since I have your attention, why not watch your ultimate demise? Izuku, come here.”
Izuku is startled out of his stupor when he hears his father call his name. He takes a step forward but he feels someone grab his arm. “Deku, where the hell do you think you’re going?” Bakugou growls. Izuku stares at the ground, bangs covering his eyes.
“I’m sorry.” He whispers, shaking off Bakugou’s arm and walking toward his father. He hears the teachers calling out to him, telling him to stop. He doesn’t. He walks to his father’s side, and he can’t bring himself to look at All Might. He doesn’t want to see the anger in his eyes.
“Izuku, you’ve made me so proud. You’ve exceeded my expectations every single day.” His father says, and Izuku can hear the warmth in his voice. It’s the very warmth Izuku’s been dying to hear since he was a child. “You’ve completed your mission, my son. You’ve been very helpful, just like you’ve always wanted to be, yes?” The child in him is beaming at the praise he’s so desperately wanted all these years. “But I have one final task for you, Izuku. Can you help me one more time?”
“Of course, father!”
The words fall out of his mouth before he can think.
“Give me your quirk.”
Izuku’s eyes widen and every fiber of his being is telling him to say no. It’s telling him to run far from his father, run to All Might, where it’s safe . It’s not safe for him anymore though, is it? He’s been outed, the school knows who his father is, and who he is. He’s lied to everyone. No one will accept him with open arms, not after learning this. “Okay.” He says, and it’s quiet. He finally looks up and he makes eye contact with All Might. “I-I’m sorry…” He says to All Might, finding that tears are beginning to pool in his eyes.
“Do you see, All Might? I’ve finally won.” All for One says joyfully, placing his hand on Izuku’s head. Izuku closes his eyes, tears falling down his cheeks. This action...it feels familiar to him. He remembers floating toys and giggles.
“I’m sorry about this Itsuki, but you’ll see that this will benefit the both of us in the future...”
No. He can’t lose this quirk. He still wants to be a hero, he can’t let go of this quirk! He squeezes his fists, and waits. Is it too late? Did he change his mind too late? Was One for All gone?
‘Midoriya is his son? My successor is the son of my enemy?!’ Toshinori thinks, shaking. He watches All for One place his hand on Midoriya’s head and part of him wants to whisk the boy away from him, to stop him. This can’t be right, Midoriya has a heart of pure gold. He knows it’s biased, but Midoriya is probably the best of all of them. So why? How? How is it that someone like All for One has a heroic son like Midoriya?
“I’ve done it!” Izuku hears his father cheer. “Now, it’s time for your own medicine, All Might!” There’s a moment of silence, and Izuku looks up in confusion. His father is staring at his hand. “Where is the quirk?” He questions. He then looks at Izuku, and wordlessly, he puts his hand back on his head again. “Izuku, give me your quirk.” His father demands. Izuku stays silent, not knowing what to say. Maybe it isn’t too late. “Izuku! Hand your quirk over to me!”
“One for All won’t transfer to someone else unless it’s holder wishes it. It can’t forcibly be taken, but it can be forcibly passed on,”
That’s right. If Izuku doesn’t want to give up his quirk, he doesn’t have to.
Toshinori still in shock of his successor’s reveal hears nothing. He’s still trying to process everything and he’s drowning in a pool of noise. His eyes see Midoriya standing beside All for One, but his heart doesn’t believe it, doesn’t accept it.
“No.” Izuku says, and he’s startled by how confident he sounds. He’s always cowered before his father, so the sudden burst of confidence is surprising. “This quirk? It’s mine. I refuse to give it to you.”
“ Izuku .” All for One says with a tone of voice that clearly tells Izuku he isn’t playing around. “Enough with the disobedience. Stop acting so foolish, do you really believe that keeping your quirk will do you any good?” He asks. “Don’t tell me you really believe you have a home here, after everything you’ve done.”
“I probably don’t, maybe I never did.” Izuku replies, glancing over at his teachers. He then looks back at his father. “But I’m tired of trying to win your approval, after years and years of isolation, I’m done.” He feels his quirk begin to build up in power. He feels the pricks of electricity beginning to circulate. “I’ve always wanted nothing but to be accepted by you. I spent my whole life wondering how I could help you, how I could prove myself to you.”
Toshinori stares in confusion over the exchange between Midoriya and All for One. At first not noticing the energy contrails building up around Midoriya’s body, but Toshinori knows that quirk, he’s owned that quirk. He knows exactly what it’s capable of, and right now, he knows what’s happening with that quirk. A small smile of pride begin to tug at his lips, ‘This child...there’s still hope for him.’ His golden heart is about to shine like never before, and the thought of that restores his smile.
“And now...now you praise me? After I beat myself up over putting the first friends I’ve ever had in danger multiple times... this? This is when you give me a pat on the shoulder and tell me I did a good job? You’ve never wanted me , you just wanted the quirk. It was never me . ” Izuku rants, not caring that they still have people watching them. Years of hurt and anger are bubbling to the surface, no longer containable. His voice is no longer capable of being quiet. With a roar, his father is going to hear his voice.
All for One watches his son as he rants, frowning. Did he not see how pointless this is? He doesn’t have the correct control over One for All to be considered any kind of a threat. With the mear eight percent he can muster, he’s as worthless to him as when he was quirkless. If he chooses so, he can easily end the line of succession right here and now by taking his life. He might not be able to take his quirk, but he can certainly take his life.
“I’m done being your puppet. I may not have any power to change the outcome, but I’m tired of sitting on the sidelines, fighting with myself!” He clenches his fist tightly. Izuku knows on his own he isn’t strong enough to put a scratch on his father. His eyes drift over to All Might, and he sees the hero mouth two words.
In that moment beyond restraint, Izuku finds himself mirroring those words. With the full extent of his power, Izuku gives All for One one hundred percent of his quirk as he uppercuts him. He screams a gut wrenching battle cry as he lands his punch, pushing his power even further. His scream is full of anger and pain.
Too late, All for One realizes just as Izuku’s punch connects with his chin. His son really did it. He used his full power and then some on him, huh? For just a moment, just a glimmer, there is a sense of pride that only a father can have for his son.
Though useless, at the last second All for One manages a rather weak counter to Izuku’s punch. The punch still sends him reeling . His counter attack manages to deflect only a small amount of that punch, but the result of the impact still sends both of them flying.
Izuku yelps as he gets thrown back. He doesn’t have enough energy to catch himself. His arm is beyond broken, mangled and purple. He’s close to unconsciousness and he can’t focus. There’s nothing but pain coursing through him. He feels someone catch him mid air. “M-Mr. Aizawa?” Izuku whispers, confused, seeing who caught him.
“Damn problem child.” He hears his teacher sigh. The last thing Izuku wonders before he blacks out is if he’s imagining the worry in Aizawa’s voice.
Seeing this exchange between the two, Toshinori feels a newfound energy. He can’t let his successor fight this battle alone. After all, he is the one who told him to go Plus Ultra. He’ll be a hypocrite if he doesn’t follow his own suggestion, no matter how tired and worn down he feels.
Seeing All for One in the air, All Might takes a chance to attack All for One, crying out, “TEXAS SMASH!” His punch sends the villain to the ground.
Toshinori begins punching him repeatedly, shouting, “You were just using him for your own personal gain!” Toshinori cries, only wondering what life was like for Izuku growing up. Suddenly, that phone call he received from Izuku that night makes a lot of sense. It makes him angrier. “How could you?! WHY?!” Toshinori shouts, clenching his fists. He can’t get the image of All for One attacking Midoriya out of his head. “He...he’s your son .” Toshinori says.
“He was, yes.” All for One says, and Toshinori pauses. “But what use do I have for him not that he won’t cooperate? He was just another one of my pawns. He’s my own flesh and blood, after all, I’m allowed to do with him as I please.” All for One blasts Toshinori off of him, and Toshinori rolls on the ground.
He pushes himself up quickly, glaring. All for One’s reply only fuels more anger beneath his skin, and suddenly just as Izuku had been, All Might is covered in yellow energy contrails. Izuku’s guilt filled eyes flashes in his mind, and he forces himself to calm down. He can’t give the villain the satisfaction of seeing him upset. He can’t continue allowing his emotions to control his actions.
“You were right, All for One…” Toshinori says, trying to keep his voice steady as he looks at the villain. He pushes down the thoughts he wants to vocalize. The ones exclaiming how amazing Izuku is, how he is so much more than a pawn for someone like All for One to use. He wants to scream that All for One isn’t allowed to do anything to Izuku, regardless of if the boy is his or not. Izuku is a person , not an object , he wants to shout.
He doesn’t. Instead, “Heroes always have so many things, so many people to protect, young Izuku included!” All Might exclaims, his arm buffing up as he puts a smile on his face. “That’s the very reason they can’t lose!”
‘No matter how afraid you are, you’ve just gotta slap on a big ol’ smile and say ‘I’ll be alright.’ Cuz it’s always the guys who smile who’re the strongest guys out there!’
“Use all your might. After all, that will be your last swing, All Might. Wounded heroes are always the most fearsome ones. In my dreams, I still sometimes see you coming toward me. Your face dead set despite your strewn bowels. I suppose I should watch out for swings two and three then.” All for One says, floating into the air.
“GO ALL MIGHT!” Toshinori hears young Bakugou cry out. “BEAT THAT BASTARD!”
“How annoying.” All for One sighs, his arm expanding again. This time though, his arm was bigger than his body, rock like structures protruding from his arm. “In order to assuredly kill you, I shall hybridize all of the best and most suitable quirks I can at the moment, and strike you with them .” He then heads for Toshinori, and Toshinori heads for him as well, calling on the last of the embers of One for All. “Today you lose not only as a hero, but as a teacher as well.”
The area around them feel the impact of their attack when they meet, the ground cracking beneath them, smoke and debris floating around them.
“That’s right. As a teacher...I must be there to lead Izuku down the right path, and show him how much better he is than you!” Toshinori exclaims. ‘And until I raise him properly, I too, cannot allow myself to die!’
“SMASH!” His other arm buffs off and he lands the punch.
“Was that all?” All for One asks, taking a few steps back.
“That’s because, I didn’t put my back into it!” Toshinori shouts, putting more than a hundred percent into his next punch. ‘Good riddance, All for One.’ “UNITED STATES OF SMASH!” He screams, delivering the finishing blow. ‘And goodbye...One for All.’
When the battle ends, All for One is pushed into the ground, unconscious. Toshinori stands above him, victorious.
"Dreamer, where have you gone?
Dreamer, come home
-The World Alive, Dreamer"
Izuku wakes up in Recovery Girl’s office. Confused, he looks around and doesn’t see anyone there. He tried to get up and out of the bed, but something attached to his arm stops him. He looks and sees a handcuff on his wrist, the other cuff attached to a pole of the bed. Frowning, he decides on sitting up instead. He stares at his lap as he finds himself thinking back to his stand off with All for One. His own father called him useless. It hurt. It hurt a lot. After all of these years, trying to impress his father, after trying to prove his worth to him, he’s still useless. Everything was in vain.
“Oh, you’re awake.” Izuku looks up and sees detective Tsukauchi. He recognizes him from the USJ attack. The detective enters the room and pulls up a chair beside Izuku’s bed. Recovery Girl and Aizawa aren’t too far behind him. “Sorry about the handcuffs, Midoriya, but I’m sure you understand our weariness.”
Izuku nods. “I do.” He mumbles in reply. He looks down at his lap again.
“Do you mind telling us your side of the story?” Tsukauchi asks, using a gentle voice. Izuku isn’t sure why he’s using such a tone with him.
“Why?” Izuku finds himself questioning. “I’m a villain, why listen to my story when I’ve done unforgivable things?”
“Because you’re not a villain, kid.” Aizawa says. “Your eyes are full of guilt. Villains don’t feel guilty.” Izuku looks up at his teacher in surprise.
“And if my source is correct, you’ve been living with All for One since you were a baby, right?” The detective asks. Wordlessly, Izuku nods in reply. “Then everything that’s happened is because of his influence.”
So Izuku tells them everything after Recovery Girl checks him over. He starts with the dreams he’s had, and how he and his father interacted. He then told them that his quirk had come in late, so he was treated as if he were quirkless growing up. Izuku admitted that he wanted to be helpful in some way to his father. He moves through his story, telling them how All for One wanted him to get information on his classmates, but didn’t tell his father everything until confronted by him. Izuku then admits to helping fight Stain, and what happened at the training camp.
“Did you always know he was a villain?” Tsukauchi asks.
“I did, but I didn’t know he was All for One.” Izuku answers. “He never really hid the fact that he was a villain from me, but he never told me who he was.”
“Thank you for all of the information, Midoriya. We’ll talk with Principle Nezu and get your name cleared.” The detective says.
Izuku does a double take. “Y-You believe me? Just like that?” He asks, surprised.
Tsukauchi gives him a smile. “My quirk allows me to figure out if someone is lying. I’m basically a human lie detector.” He says as a way of explanation. The detective removes the handcuffs, giving Izuku a pat on the head. He stands from his chair and heads to the door. Aizawa goes to follow suit but stops.
“I’ll be back later.” He says before leaving.
Izuku is left alone in the room.
Shouta runs a hand down his face as he sighs. To think that this whole year, Midoriya had been dealing with all of this...it angers him. He walks with Tsukauchi back to the teacher’s lounge. They’re going to go through their information before meeting with Nezu. There is also his homeroom he has to worry about as well. How troublesome.
“There you are, Aizawa!” Shouta hears Nezu exclaim and he looks at the principle, seeing him standing next to a small, plump woman. She looks almost exactly like Midoriya, sans the curls and freckles. “I’d like to meet with you. There’s something we have to discuss.”
When the door opens and someone enters, Izuku isn’t sure who he’s expecting. He’s currently staring out the window and sees the reflection of a woman behind him. The first thing he notices is her green hair and emerald eyes. It’s all he needs to see. Izuku knows where he’s seen this woman before. He turns around to look at her and her eyes fill with tears. “Itsuki…” She whispers, and something deeply rooted in Izuku clicks.
“M-Mom?” He finds himself asking and the woman trembles as she runs forward, wrapping him in a hug.
“My beautiful baby boy!” She cries, hugging him as tightly as possible. Tears of his own pools in his eyes and he starts crying as well, overwhelmed with emotions. Her hug is one of the warmest hugs he’s ever received, and he never wants to let go.
‘Is this what a parent’s hug feels like?’ He wonders, hugging her just as tightly. They sit like this for a few minutes, crying and hugging. Eventually, his mom pulls away and she cups his face in her hands.
“Oh, Itsuki…” She murmurs. “I’m so sorry I couldn’t protect you.” She apologizes. “I’m so sorry .”
“Mom it’s—it’s not your fault.” Izuku says, and wow will it take a while to get used to calling her mom, “You didn’t know.” Neither of them really knew, did they? His thoughts backtrack for a second, and he realizes she didn’t call him ‘Izuku’ when she entered the room. She had called him ‘Itsuki’, right? Why? Had All for One changed his name? Izuku never even considered the possibility of this. “Um...mom?” He asks.
“What is it honey?” She replies, and Izuku feels nothing but warmth.
“Was my name originally Itsuki?” Izuku asks, and his mom looks at him with sadness. She pulls her hands away from his face and nods.
“It was. He changed it though, right? He changed it to Izuku?” She questions. Izuku nods in reply. “That’s why I never found you.” She mumbles. “After he left with you I couldn’t think straight. I kept worrying if I’d ever find you again, and enlisted the help of almost every officer in Japan to find you, but they never did.” She pauses, sniffling a bit. “I thought I’d lost you forever, but then I saw you during the Sports Festival, and I thought, ‘maybe it’s him’, but I dismissed the thought in fear of false hope. And then I saw you on the news, and I saw him fighting All Might, and I just knew .”
Izuku finds himself surging forward, hugging her. “He...he told me you died, but I saw you in dreams. I think a part of me thought you were out there, somewhere , and now you’re here.” He sniffled, feeling himself start crying again.
“I’m here now, honey, and I’m never leaving you.” His mom declares, hugging him back. That one statement. That one sentence, causes the dams to open and before Izuku knows it, he’s crying in his mother’s arms again. She doesn’t seem to mind though, as she runs her fingers through his hair and kisses the top of his head. She whispers words of comfort as her tears join his, and they sit like this for a while.
Standing behind the door, unbeknownst to the two, is Toshinori. He hadn’t meant to eavesdrop on their conversation. He had intended to talk with Izuku about everything that happened, but it seems someone beat him to it. Leaning against the wall, Toshinori has his eyes closed as he listens to both Izuku and his mother comforting each other. His heart throbs painfully in his chest, as he just stands, and listens. It’s the hardest thing he’s ever had to do in his entire life, just stand there and do nothing. With a final sigh, he turns and away, intent on talking to Izuku at another time. His hand gently wipes away tears.
It takes a few days, but eventually, Izuku returns to the dorms. Nezu helped clear his name, and he wasn’t held responsible for anything that happened. The blame fell solely on All for One.
Izuku walks behind Aizawa, nervous. He’s worried about how his classmates are going to react to him and what was revealed. Aizawa told him that the class was informed of what happened, but he didn’t tell Izuku how they responded.
When they reach the door to 1-A’s dorm, Shouta pauses at the door. “For what it’s worth, Midoriya, you’ve done a good job.” His teacher says. “Even in the situation you were in, you were still a hero. Don’t forget that.” Shouta says, and he raises his hand. He hesitates for a second, I sure of how Midoriya would react to Shouta’s unexpected paternal pat. He places his hand on Midoriya’s head anyways, patting it.
A pat on the head, that’s the best he can do? After everything the boy has been through, that’s the only comfort he can offer? What if Shouta had been in Midoriya’s mothers shoes? Would he had only offered a pat on the head and a ‘good job’ as comfort, if his child had been missing for over fifteen years?
“T-Thank you.” Izuku stutters, blushing a bit. Aizawa then turns and opens the door. Once it’s open, Aizawa leads Izuku inside. The dorm is empty. Where is everyone? “U-Um...Mr. Aizawa? Where is—” When he goes to look at where his teacher is standing, the man is gone. “M-Mr. Aizawa?” He squeaks.
“Welcome home!” Izuku yelps in surprise when his class appears out of basically nowhere, looking at him with relief and bright smiles. Izuku stands in the doorway, mouth gaping open like a fish. Hanging above them is a banner that says, ‘Welcome Home Midoriya!’. There’s streamers hanging up and other decorations.
Tears fall down his cheeks as he stares at everyone in surprise.
‘Don’t tell me you really believe you have a home here, after everything you’ve done.’
‘I probably don’t, maybe I never did.’
Bakugou pushes his way through the crowd, and approaches Izuku. They make eye contact, and Izuku sees a flash of anger. When he looks closer though, he notices the hurt on his childhood friend’s face as Bakugou’s fist meets Izuku’s cheek. The force sends Izuku stumbling slightly.
“BAKUGOU WHAT THE HELL?!” His class shouts.
“I-It’s fine!” Izuku stutters, as he turns to look at Bakugou. “I’m sorry, Kacchan.” Trying to wipe away his tears as they kept coming.
“Wipe those damn tears of yours, nerd.” Bakugou grumbles, but Izuku realizes there’s no anger behind it.
“You’re right, I probably should.” Izuku says with a smile, but he can’t stop crying. Within seconds, he’s surrounded by his classmates in a giant group hug. He feels so much warmth, and for once, he feels acceptance.
The hugs lasts for a few more seconds before everyone pulls away and Izuku’s tears die down. “Satou made cake!” Uraraka exclaims suddenly, and everyone laughs.
“We’re happy to have you back, Midoriya.” Iida says with a smile. Everyone nods in agreement.
“When we heard what happened to you, we couldn’t believe it, ribbit.” Tsuyu begins.
“We were really worried about you.” Yaoyorozu continues.
“So we figured we should definitely throw you a party to welcome you home!” Kirishima exclaims, grinning.
“Even...even after everything that happened? After everything I caused?” Izuku finds himself asking.
He feels a hand grab his shoulder. Izuku looks and sees Todoroki standing beside him. “It wasn’t your fault.” Everyone looks at Todoroki in surprise when he speaks up. “All you were doing was listening to someone you thought had your best intentions at heart. He manipulated you, Midoriya.”
Izuku watches as his class nods in agreement, and for the second time that day, he bursts into tears. Once he’s no longer crying, everyone celebrates Izuku’s return.
All of these years, he’s been looking to his father for approval, yet his classmates are the ones giving him the approval he’s yearned for.
Eventually, Iida sends them all off to bed, but Izuku can’t sleep. He’s restless for some reason, and he finds himself in the common room, sitting on the couch. He’s alone with his thoughts and he’s basking in the silence.
“Midoriya?” He looks up sees Todoroki standing by the couch. “What are you still doing up?” He asks.
Izuku shrugs, “I couldn’t sleep.” He answers honestly. Todoroki looks hesitantly at the spot next to him, but Izuku scooches over, offering the spot to him. Todoroki sits down. They sit in silence, but it’s a comfortable one. “I’m sorry.” Izuku suddenly says.
“Running away when you confessed to me.” Izuku elaborates. “I shouldn’t have done that.”
“Why did you?” Todoroki asks.
“I’m not deserving of your feelings, especially after everything that’s happened.” Izuku answers, sighing. He leans his head back against the couch. “But...I’m not sure what to do now. It seems like everyone has forgiven me except for myself.”
“Your demons, right?” Todoroki asks, realizing it wasn’t too long ago when Izuku brought his to the surface, and made Todoroki acknowledge their existence.
Izuku nods. “Yeah, the demons.” He replies. “How did you come to terms with yours?” He questions, realizing the irony of the role swap.
Shouto hums in thought. “I confronted the ones I could.” He explains. One demon he had confronted was his father. The other one he was working on was his mother.
“Confronted them, huh?” Izuku murmurs out loud. “It may take some time but...I think I can do that.” He’ll focus on the immediate ones like dealing with the imprint his father left on him, and his own belief in himself for now. The others can be dealt with when he crosses the bridge, like working on his relationship with his mother, and moving forward with All Might.
“When you feel deserving, let’s talk about what I said.” Todoroki places a hand on Izuku’s shoulder as he gets up to leave. He glances back at Izuku, and with a warm smile, “Try not to stay up too late.”
Izuku smiles slightly, feeling his heart flutter. It may be awhile before he feels as if he’s deserving, but he looks forward to when he does.
He is a dreamer, after all.
“This place is a bit stiff, All Might…” All for One says, staring at the glass that separates the two from one another.
Toshinori looks at him with narrowed eyes.
“For example...let’s say your back is itchy and you try to scratch it by rubbing against the back of your chair...the moment you do, all of the guns in this place will point at you. Your vital signs, your brain waves, they’re monitoring them at all times. If you so much as think about activating your quirk, their hands will already be gripped around your throat. To be imprisoned deep underground, covered by so many levels of security...this place is built for the complete and utter exclusion of the wicked. They have modeled it after a greek legend...they call it Tartarus. It is the name of the god of hell, it is fitting that the fate of those who betray the gods has befallen me.”
Toshinori keeps a neutral face. “There’s no way you’re getting out of here, you know.”
“Let’s assume that to be the case. So? What do you want from me?” All for One questions. “Did you come of your own accord? Or did you happen to bring Izuku with you? I’d like to chat with him.”
Toshinori tenses, but says nothing. He knows the game the villain is trying to play.
“What’s with that pitiful costume of yours? You don’t mean to tell me that you’re still working as a hero, right?”
He’s not, but All for One doesn’t need to know that. He was just let out of the hospital, so he’s still wrapped in bandages, but it doesn’t matter to Toshinori. “You love to run your mouth, don’t you?” He asks.
“Come on now, sympathize with me a little. It’s been so long since I’ve had a proper conversation!” All for One exclaims. “Answer me this, how is Izuku doing? Is he having trouble settling into his classes again? Is he still having those dreams?” He asks, and Toshinori knows what he’s trying to do. He can feel himself tensing up, but he has to stay calm. He can’t explode. “I hope his classmates are still accepting of him, I know that’s something Izuku was always anxious about.”
“Don’t act like you’re worried about him when just a few days ago you threw him away!” Toshinori snaps. He feels the fury beneath his skin, glaring at All for One with malice.
All for One just laughs. “You’ve certainly grown to care for my son, haven’t you?” The villain hums.
“You bastard...what are you after? What were you trying to do?” Toshinori questions. “Against all reason, you managed to keep your body alive...you were able to endure and live for this long. All the while, you dedicated yourself to exploitation, manipulation, and controlling others...what were you trying to accomplish?"
“This is an unproductive discussion topic. Even if you listen, you wouldn’t be able to understand. There are always going to be people who cannot see eye to eye. We’re the same. You and I, we’re the same.” He says and Toshinori can’t find the similarities between them.
“I didn’t manipulate Izuku for my goals.” Toshinori argues. “I didn’t tear him away from his family. I had his best intentions at heart. You could care less about him.”
“That’s cruel, All Might. I put him in the high school of his dreams, didn’t I?”
“You only put him in U.A. so he could be your eyes and ears.” Toshinori frowns. He thinks back to when he first met Izuku. The boy had looked so nervous, so unsure.
“Ever since I was a kid people teased me because I didn’t have a quirk. My lack of quirk drives me to want to prove my worth to them, prove my worth to him.”
“He’s someone important to me that loves quirks. He always talks about them and it makes sense, it’s his field of study.”
“But...I feel like because I’m quirkless...I failed him somehow. I want to show him that I can be strong enough to protect and reassure, even though I’m quirkless. I want to help him somehow.”
Toshinori now realizes that the boy was talking about his father. “All he wanted to do was earn your approval, and yet you used that wish to manipulate him.” He says, clenching his fists, trying to calm his anger. He can’t understand how All for One could be so cruel to a child . How can he willingly have a child take part in a fight that wasn’t even his?
“In the same way you aspired to be the hero of justice, I yearned to be the king of evil. Simple as that.” All for One says, as if it makes perfect sense to him. It didn’t make any sense to Toshinori. “I had the power to embrace these ideals and embody them. If I can live on eternally through these ideals, then no effort is too great for me.”
“Then why did you use Izuku? Was he supposed to be your successor?” Toshinori questions.
“You really have to ask that?! Hahaha! Interesting!” All for One laughs. “It’s because you took everything away from me! Look at this body. It’s with this tube that I’m barely able to keep on living. All because of you, my ideals, which I thought were limitless, suddenly became limited. When people know that there will be an end, they entrust. It’s like that with everything. The houses and buildings we construct. Even the food we put in our mouths. Everything has been made by humans to be entrusted to other humans. I’m just trying to do what everyone else is doing.”
“All Might, in three minutes…”
“Wait, wait. That’s not all!” All for One suddenly exclaims. “I still have...more to say...yes, that’s right. I thought the world would be pretty shaken up by the news of your retirement. How is it out there?”
“He is completely cut off from information about the outside world. Please refrain from any imprudent disclosures.”
“What a shame…” All for One sighs. “I’m sure it’s probably something like this,” Toshinori stiffens, “Right now, with the anxiety caused by your departure and the concerns cause by the heroes’ new leader, Endeavor, I’m sure the media is appealing to the entirety of hero society. On the other hand, sensing that growing insecurity in the world, the so-called outcasts of society who don’t support heroes will begin to take action. Thinking that they may be able to shape the way society behaves, they are beginning to organize amongst themselves. The League of Villains will likely continue to keep themselves concealed for a while so they can continue to see the organization grow and expand their influence. I’m sure Izuku will continue on the path of becoming a hero, but I’m certain the guilt will continue to eat at him. That boy always was a wild card.”
“If the scenario I’m illustrating is actually unfolding in that manner, then that’s more or less how I thought things would turn out, and if things are really as I say they are...then the reason will have been because of your retirement and the lie that is your appearance. Moving forward, now that you are no longer able to save anybody, all you can do is sit and look on at these villains that you were responsible for creating. I believe you will spend the rest of your life stricken by your powerlessness and inability to do anything, but really, I want to hear from you,” Toshinori leans forward in his seat to glare at the villain as All for One speaks, “How does it all feel?”
“All Might, please back away.”
“People often get upset when their feelings are guessed correctly! What a shame you can’t hit me here."
Toshinori is quiet, a frown on his face. “You, of all people...don’t you go and presume you know everything. I understand your thinking very well...the League of Villains...both Izuku and I are to be killed by them, that’s the gist of it, isn’t it?”
“I will not be killed!” Toshinori declares. “The future you envision will never happen, you bastard!”
“All Might, time’s up. Please exit.”
Toshinori stands from his seat, glaring at All for One. “The future you envision...I’ll smash it...however many times I need to! And you can sit here, spending the rest of your life looking on!” He exclaims, leaving the room.
“Heh heh heh...the rest of my life, huh…”
The doors close shut.
Izuku is woken up the next morning by his phone. Confused, he checks it, and sees a few text messages. His eyes widen when he sees who they’re from. He scrambles to get up and slip on his shoes. As quickly and as quietly as possible, he runs out of the dorm and down to Ground Gamma.
“ALL MIGHT!” Izuku cries when he reaches him.
“Oh, there you are!” The hero says, waving his bandaged arm. “You’re late kid!” He then says.
“All Might, I’m so sorry.” Izuku immediately goes to apologize, but All Might holds his hand up. Izuku stops talking, and waits for his mentor to speak.
“It’s alright, my boy.” Toshinori begins, and he takes a breath. He thinks about the conversation he had with All for One, and he frowns. “All for One he...he manipulated you. He did what he does best and bent your will to work alongside his.” Toshinori mumbles, sighing. “While I am upset you didn’t put your faith in me, my boy, I understand why you did what you did.”
Izuku looks down at the ground, rubbing his fingers nervously. As he glances up at All Might, worried, he hadn’t expected to face this demon so soon. “You um...do you want One for All back…?” He practically whispers. Izuku can understand why, if All Might does. He betrayed his trust and made him upset. If he were All Might, he’d take the quirk back too. He feels a hand on his shoulder.
“Izuku, I’m retiring.” All Might says and Izuku’s head snaps up. His eyes widen in horror, and guilt washes over him.
“The embers of One for All inside me are gone...and what’s more I can’t maintain my muscle form anymore.” Toshinori says, as gently as possible.
“I’m sure Izuku will continue on the path of becoming a hero, but I’m certain the guilt will continue to eat at him.”
He can see the guilt all over Izuku’s face, and he immediately tries to get rid of it. “It’s fine though, my boy. This just means I can dedicate myself to teaching you.” He sees Izuku’s eyes water up and Toshinori smiles a bit. “I promise I’ll help you become the best hero the world has ever seen.” He’s surprised by his words at first, because this is the first time since meeting the boy he’s realized just how much this child means to him. His smile doesn’t waver though, instead, it brightens.
Izuku’s eyes widen as he feels All Might pull him in for a hug. “So let’s do our best, the both of us.” The tears spill from his eyes, and he hugs All Might back, just as tightly. He begins crying, and he hears All Might chuckle wetly. “I thought I told you to stop being such a crybaby!” The hero jokes, tightening his hold on Izuku. He can feel the warmth from him, and the comfort.
This, Izuku decides, is definitely what a parent’s hug feels like.
“Have no fear...I am here!”
Aaaand we've reached the end!! I hope you guys enjoyed this story, it was super fun to write!
I wanna say thank you to the mods of the 2019 Tododeku Big Bang for doing an amazing job with this event! Participating in this was a blast, and working with my partner was awesome!!
But this is not the end of the story. I have a sequel in the works that will be coming out in a few months. Stay tuned!
Chapter 20: Please Read!
Hello everyone! I’m not sure if you’ve seen, but I posted the sequel to this story! It’s called Avalanche, and I’m super excited to share it with you all!! I’ll be updating Avalanche every Wednesday! I hope you guys enjoy!