Shigaraki wakes to find the world a mass of swirling colors and motion, out of focus and much too fucking bright.
Almost immediately, he feels the urge to vomit rise deep in his gut. He pushes air through his nostrils, presses his eyes shut to center himself. His hand reaches up to rub across his lids, wiping away strands of greasy hair that stick to his sweat-coated skin. He is clammy to the touch and cold, his motions agonizingly slow.
Annoying, he thinks and decides to get on with it. He can’t waste time being an invalid.
When he pushes himself up, bile travels up his throat. He swallows it down and groans, the sound rumbling as he squints against the bright light coming from the fuck knows where.
His eyes adjust quickly, however, and so he finds Spinner sleeping in a chair next to his bed. His arms hang limply at his sides, his head tilted back in a position that promises a stiff neck and tense shoulders. A soft snore tells Shigaraki that he is in fact sleeping, as does the soft rise and fall of his chest.
In the corner, Shigaraki finds Toga half-sitting in Twice’s lap, who is drooling on Mr. Compress’ shoulder. They sigh softly in their sleep, dead to the world until they decide to awaken.
They too are alive, then. It doesn’t explain why they decided to crash here of all places, but Shigaraki figures there are more pressing issues to worry about.
Dabi is nowhere to be found, but that isn’t surprising by any stretch. He might be dead, yet chances are he is lurking somewhere. He’ll find out soon enough.
Now, Shigaraki looks down at his hands, the memory of tearing flesh and tendons still vivid in his mind. He has lost three fingers in the fight, he knows that, remembers the pain. Except, well, when he brings up his hand, they are still there. A jagged scar runs across where Redestro severed the bone. The skin is tender and pale; paler than the rest of his body and smooth as he touches it.
Curious, Shigaraki curls the digits. Beneath the skin, his quirk buzzes, undeterred.
“Spinner,” he says, firmly. His voice isn’t loud but Spinner stirs regardless.
Shigaraki watches him as his brows pinch together and his mouth pulls into a frown. Then, his eyes snap open, searching, before locking onto Shigaraki like a hitscan weapon onto its target.
“Shigaraki! You—You're awake!” Spinner leans forward, the chair groaning as it slides against wooden tiles.
“What’s up with this?” Shigaraki asks, holding up his hand. He spreads the fingers, all five of them responding without delay.
Mouth slightly agape, Spinner watches. Then, his face splits into a grin.
“I fixed it! I actually did! Is it working okay? I wasn’t sure if it would, I’ve never done it before like that, you know?”
Shigaraki stares blankly. He’s still so fucking slow. “What?”
“Ah, eh, my quirk! I figured out I could … regrow limbs and such, but I didn’t know I could do it on someone other than myself.”
He knows now, then. Shigaraki curls the hand.
Spinner apparently decides that this is the time to choke on his fucking tongue. He coughs, eyes blown wide. In the corner, Toga turns her face further into Twice’s neck.
“...What.” Shigaraki allows Spinner three seconds to collect himself.
He needs five.
“You-- I-- I didn’t except you to say that, honestly! You’re welcome, totally! Haha...”
Shigaraki squints at him. Spinner grins.
“How long was I out?”
Spinner’s smile softens. “A little over a day. Not that long, considering everything.”
“There isn’t enough pain.”
“I’m not hurting as much as I should.”
Spinner chuckles, and Shigaraki can tell it is awkward.
“Weird way of phrasing that, but okay. Uh, the doctor, Ujiko, did something. He patched up Toga and Twice as well. Dabi, too.”
Shigaraki acknowledges this with a nod. He is pleased. If the guy deigned himself to help, he will support them in the future. Main quest completed. Next quest accessible now.
Upon reaching for his trouser pocket, Shigaraki realizes that Father isn’t there. Spinner watches him, makes a face Shigaraki can’t be bothered to decipher.
“Ah, it’s right here,” he says, leaning toward the nightstand. He hesitates before touching the hand but eventually does so, holding it out to him.
Shigaraki takes it with three fingers.
Spinner doesn’t back off and instead remains in Shigaraki’s space.
“The other ones, we couldn’t get them. After you passed out.”
The words linger in the air, creating tension that makes Shigaraki’s neck itch. He refrains from scratching it, instead bringing his other hand close to cradle Father. Still, there is something there in those two sentences, a meaning Shigaraki can somewhat grasp yet fails to comprehend fully.
Until, suddenly, he does.
“I didn’t expect you to try,” he admits, a hint of surprise coating his inflection.
When Spinner doesn’t avert his eyes, Shigaraki wishes to shy away. He doesn’t, however, unwilling to back down from the challenge.
“We know how important they are to you. Especially after what you said to the doctor.” Spinner pauses, not yet finished but waiting, thinking. For once, Shigaraki decides to be patient, if maybe because a droning headache is beginning to press against his skull, and he would rather not speak any more.
After maybe steeling his resolve, Spinner puts a hand on Shigaraki’s knee.
“I’m sorry for your loss, boss.”
It is the first time Shigaraki hears those words. It’s odd, makes him feel something in his gut that could be emotion or nausea, maybe a mixture of both. Shigaraki looks at Spinner’s hand, doesn’t move to shake him off.
“’s fine,” he mumbles. “I--”
He trails off, pulling his brows together as old memories, newly remembered, make themselves known again. He saw them when fighting Redestro, saw them before, when pushing the limits of his quirk. There are others, years-worth of living he hasn’t had access to.
In his hands, he holds the last piece of that life. It has held him in turn, starting from long before his father decayed at Shigaraki’s touch. He still feels anger, wrath, nauseating pain when thinking about him, when thinking about his family. Holding this hand does nothing to strengthen those emotions now.
Purposefully, he lowers his raised fingers and truly holds his father’s hand for the first time.
He hears Spinner’s gasp, feels his grasp tighten around his knee, but Shigaraki allots no attention to him at this moment. Instead, he watches as skin and flesh, dead and cold, turn to dust in his grip.
The hand that he has worn on his face for over 15 years is reduced to mere flakes of ash, sitting on his bed.
“What did you just--”
Spinner stares. Shigaraki stares back. The sight, whatever he sees, makes Spinner flinch violently, hand pulling away as he backs off against the backrest of his chair. Its legs again scrape against the floor, producing a sound loud enough to finally make the other league members stir.
“We’re attacking the prison next,” Shigaraki states. “We’ll need Kurogiri for the final boss fight.”