Aizawa Shouta's personal hell had begun at the tender age of fourteen in the inauspicious summer night when he woke up to the slight burning sensation on his arm and watched sleepy and dazed how his soulmark appeared in his skin. Only until it stopped he could begin to be horrified. Because what the fuck?¡ he was fourteen already, he wasn’t supposed to get a soulmark, he was markless, he had resigned himself to being markless for years. Actually, he could just see it as an advantage. For his pro-hero path in life, a soulmate would be but a burden and now this… His soulmate had just being born, his life was a joke… gods why…
It wasn’t even a small concealable one it was his whole arm. How was it so big? Binding lines going from his right palm to the side of his neck. Dam it. Just when he had decided he wanted to be a hero and get a scholarship to U.A. He was working damn hard on it, with a quirk like his it would not be easy it was hard enough to worry about himself and now was he supposed to worry about a random kid all of a sudden? Hell no. He gave a heavy sight and tried not to panic… It was fine maybe they would never meet each other. Maybe his soulmate would not want a relationship at all. Maybe he could be a hero overseas. And nobody was actually asking him to take care of a baby, he had no reason to worry about it until many many years later. It would be fine.
After all, it wasn’t that rare for soulmates to never found each other and as of late couples finding each other and choosing to take different paths were more and more hear of, soulmarks were starting to be treated like optional marks. Because of freedom and shit. Truth be told he didn't much like the new way the subject was being handled, soulmarks were the proof of feelings that outlasted even dead. It had been overly romanticized for centuries but to reject it just because you could, was not something Shouta agreed on but he also could understand the reason behind it. Soulmarks were not perfect and sometimes they ended up being chains. He knew that very well.
He flopped back onto his pillow and stared at the ceiling of his tiny room then stared at his soulmark. Looking close the mark wasn’t black as he had thought but a deep dark green. It was a little strange, different from all the others he had seen and So big. It looked kinda like a cool tattoo... He sulked a bit more and passed the night without sleeping... It wasn’t that bad he was used to it. Although tonight the house was empty and he had been looking forward to full night sleep. His father would be at the hospital all night, chained to the bedside of a woman he never really came to love and by morning would be back to the son he never truly wanted.
Midoriya Izuku was born with a soulmark and it was the talk of the hospital, it wasn’t rare to be born with one but it was rare to have one that big. Soulmarks were incomplete until meeting your soulmate and they grew either more intricate or bigger or both but the final result was usually no bigger than the size of a hand in any part of the body. Baby Izuku had his whole arm and a little bit of his neck completely covered with a very intricate design of dark green lines the color of his hair. It was odd, to say the least, and even tough popular believe said the bigger the soulmark the deepest the love and things like that, the design wasn't exactly reassuring. Inko Midoriya eyed it thoughtfully. No bright colors, no familiar symbol… Her own soulmark was a little bit smaller than the palm of her hand made with bright yellows and soft blues. But maybe popular believe had it right this time and she could not help but love those dark tones on the mark just the same as her baby's hair. Whoever Izuku's soulmate was she hoped the kid would love her baby as much as the mark seemed to suggest.
She briefly wondered if it maybe was a registered soulmark. Being that big surely it was an old mark. The reason people said things like the bigger the better about soulmarks was that they were usually marks that had survived more than one reincarnation, Inko believed that it wasn't always the case but surely it was a probable cause, and important factor. Unfortunately, there was just not enough information about the subject and too many variables. The register of soulmarks had been a government imposition that had recently been revoked thanks to social pressure and activist efforts but the documents were still in public records. Inko was supportive of the movement since those records had lead to people being judged because of the mark they had rather than the person they were. For many years all government employees including heroes and research facilities workers had been made to register their marks. It had become a trend in Inko's parents' time to go to a public office and look for a match on their mark. This lead to a lot of teenage soulmates that started relationships they were not prepared for and the predictable failure of many of those relationships. But the worst was the scouting system that was created.
Records of soulmarks were nothing new, they were some of the first things humankind bothered to leave behind in paintings on the rocks of ancient caves, what was new was to make them part of a bureaucratic system that pretended to track people through their reincarnations. The mark of famous people was sought after for big companies that believed if they had talent in a past life they would have talent in this life too or worse, to track criminals, the paths for those kids became drastically narrowed. The adults of the past generation had grown up to realized one simple truth, people didn't want to know their past lives. They had grown up with too much knowledge of who they had been. Villains, men, women, heroes, rich, poor. Too many expectations were put on their shoulders, sometimes since birth, and thus those records being stoped was a good thing even if investigation about the marks would suffer without them. Still, even if it was now illegal to use those records as a form of discrimination, many still used them to find their mates and they would probably keep on doing it. Luckily for many kids and unluckily for some soulmates, finding a match was not that easy. Technology had certainly made it much more easy to search and thus the problems of overusing the Marks Records, but Soulmarks could slightly change from one live to the next and people were not always immediately found, sometimes they were not born for a few generations, sometimes they were born the second after they died and the possible changes were completely unpredictable, maybe a new symbol was added or an old one completed or maybe the colors were different. But finding your mate was a wonderful thing, they said. Even those whose relationship didn't work out, could not deny the deep connection that existed between them. Even if the new generations had a deep resentment for the system and for the marks themselves, for the oppression and the injustice. New movements had been on the rise recently, people that denied their marks and the possibility of bonding. Inko was neither there nor here on her believes about this new thinking but if one thing was certain was that soulmarks could become beautiful things and she hoped Izuku's mark would bring nothing but joy.
At the end of the summer break, Aizawa went to school with long sleeves and a hoodie. His mark would be difficult to conceal but he wore this sort of clothes most of the time anyway so it wasn't that bad. And if they saw they saw who cares… He probably could pass it as a tattoo, it was kind of weird for a soul mark people may believe it, he really didn't care that much but his father's reaction to it had been enough to give him pause and at the very least not showcase it. Summer was not over yet tought.. and even the morning was kind of hot… he had no slept well and he was hot tired and uncomfortable with his mark and not in the mood for his entire class to be gushing about how one of them had found their soulmate. He ignored the group for most of it but why?… Did she really have to talk about it the whole day? how many times can someone hear the same story without wanting to throw some duck tape around? Is it really of that much importance that she can go on and on about how tingly her skin was and every single detail about the entire (and otherwise completely ordinary) day of their meeting from the gum on her shoe to the number of eyelashes on her mate?? mates are not such a big deal… Some people say they are the universe manipulating you, don’t they? damn, he wants to sleep for a year, why hasn't break started, wait did it start already and he has been wasting it? Where's the teacher. Yamada is being a complete fail as a friend and is encouraging the girl to keep telling her way-too-redundant story.
"Do you have a soulmark Shota-kun?" asks one of his classmates before he can consider if he just sleeps right there or goes to the yard. Mira or Mia or something is looking at him with a shy smile and Yamada makes that weird face he does when he tries for Shouta to flirt with the girls, that awful wiggling of his eyebrows, from behind her back.
"What does it matter?" he says trying not to sound as irked as he is feeling. The slight flush on her cheeks gets stronger and she mumbles a bit
"I-It doesn't it doesn't matter at all. I don't believe in Soulmark supremacy either!" she says trying to sound resolute. Soulmark supremacy what the hell is that?
"That's because you don't have one Mira." Says the girl that was telling her story in a smug tone.
"That... That's true but so what? is better not to have one you won't be able to date anymore never again Sae. And you may break up even if you are soulmates so Soulmarks are foolish they don't even make sense"
"They are not! That's what people say because they are jealous! I am lucky I found my mate is awesome and we love each other we are not going to break up" She answers flustered
"But you don't even know each other do you?" pipes up a boy near them.
"come on guys..." says Hizashi not sure of what to say but still trying to help the rapidly escalating discussion.
"S-so what about it? we are soulmates we love each other because... because..." She is about to cry and Shouta sighs heavily
"It doesn't matter," he says to the annoying girl about to cry "If you are in love it doesn't matter if is because of the soulmark or because of his eyelashes or whatever. Relationships work because you put effort so the feeling doesn't go away."
"That's right!" Says Mira "that's why there is no point in soulmarks"
"I didn't say that." he says and gets up from his desk, he won't be able to sleep here. "even if you put effort in it the relationship won't work if you are not compatible, Soulmates are always compatible" He says walking away and ignoring the big smile of the crying girl, Yamada following him.
"wow, man way to turn someone down." He says catching up in the hall
"What are you talking about?" He asks and Yamada makes a stressed-out noise
"Dude how can you be so dense about this stuff?! I really don't get what they see in you"
"Me neither." He says
"So... I thought you hated Soulmarks." Says Yamada and waits till Shouta is settled on the grass beneath a tree.
"I do" He answers after a bit of silence.
"It didn't sound like you hated them"
"I hate them because they are troublesome. The make people stupid just like right now"
"Mmm no kidding talks about soulmarks always go like that. Still, I want to meet mine" Shouta has his eyes closed but he knows Yamada is grinning like the fool he is. How were they friends again? Oh right... Yamada is the only one who knows anything about him.
"Good luck. I hope I never met mine"
So damn loud...