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Venality

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“ H-Hey! Stop it! You’re hurting her!” A boy shouted. “ If you d-don’t stop, I-I’ll stop you!”

“ What?” The older boy with a tree branch said dismissively. “ Don’t be a hero, stupid. Don’t you know how the world works anymore?”   

“ I-I don’t care.” The first boy shouted. “ I’ll still protect her.”

“ Ha ha. Your funeral.” The thuggish boy swung his tree branch. Only to get stopped. Both boys looked up. A teenage girl just stopped it with on hand.

“ You’re being rude. Just because you can do anything, doesn’t mean you should.”

“ And what the hell do you… huh?” The second boy gasped. The tree branch slowly began shrinking. The girl pulled it free from him as it did. It wasn’t just shrinking, the first boy realised. It was becoming younger. Soon it was nothing more than just a small, thin branch. The teenager looked over it.

“ Just because you think you’re strong, doesn’t mean you are. Remember that and beat it.” The second boy took a few nervous steps back before running off. “ Seriously? Little kid.” The girl sighed before tossing away the branch.

“ U-Uh.”

“ Hmm?”

“ Thank you… for helping us.” The first boy said.

“ Heh. Just thought I’d help a fellow protector of the peace out. Brave thing you did.” The young girl smiled. She put a black leather glove on before starting to leave. “ Welp. Later.”

“ W-Wait.” The boy asked. “ What’s your name?”

“ Who me?” The girl smiled. “ I’m Eri. Eri Midoriya.”

*****************************************

It had been Seven Long Years since the League’s attack on UA. Seven Years since Hero Society was destroyed and rebuilt. Seven Years and the world kept turning. A lot of things had happened since then. Izuku wasn’t stupid. He recognised what to target to bring down a country. He knew what to reinforce when rebuilding. With his suggestions and aided by other minds like Nedzu, a new structure was put in place made of new laws and regulations. The new society was not structurally too different from before as to not cause the people too much grief but it was fundamentally different.

Perhaps it was spite on the Leagues part but Heroes became obsolete overnight. Quirk laws were completely revamped. Instead of being unable to use the gifts people were born with, people were simply given training on how to utilise them better. As part of the quirk counsellors new roles was to provide some training on how safely use quirks in order to prevent it being a danger, both to others and, more importantly, to themselves, as well as issuing potential support items for those who needed additional support. The police were given full support to use quirks to bring down active criminals and civilians could use them to defend themselves without the worry of being branded vigilantes. With this, heroes, crowning jewels of the modern world, vanished.

In order to help deal with these new regulations, a new branch of the government was set up, or so was the official story. The Delegation of Quirk Affairs was created as a way to replace the commission. Tomura Shigaraki was put in charge of it. It’s role was similar to that of the old Commission in managing quirk based affairs based with people with quirks. As a result, most things went through the offices. It also included a new branch of the police force known as the Peacekeepers, headed by Izuku Midoriya.

The Peacekeepers role was simple. Any villain with an extremely powerful quirk the police couldn't handle alone was handled by the Peacekeepers. The Keepers themselves were talented and powerful in the various fields they applied themselves too and weren’t limited. Some of the Keepers branches had Quirkless people acting as operators, tactically manoeuvring the others in apprehending their targets. In the early years, they were used to apprehend some of the inmates of old Tartarus that broke off from the League following it being disbanded, no longer of use now it’s objective had been completed. Not everyone accepted the two branches immediately of course. Izuku hadn't been expecting them too. The League had done a lot wrong in the eyes of a lot of people. The were protests and riots but, eventually, people accepted things wouldn't change and begrudgingly returned to their normal lives. Now, seven years after creation, people were more open to them after seeing the things that had changed for the bettwe. However, not everyone agreed with the sentiment.

After the League’s victory, one of two things happened to the heroes of the old world. Most of the took their loss with some grace. Even in modern day, it wasn’t like being a hero was illegal. Some people still dressed up and took to the streets to help the people. It was no where near as big as it was before, but people took advantage of the new quirk laws to become heroes even without the training schools like UA used to provide. However, others refused to let Villains rule their country. And so, the roles swapped. The League became the peoples defenders, many of them working as Peacekeepers. The old heroes, on the other hand, became the revolutionaries trying to change the world.

Meanwhile, the world kept turning and people kept growing. Among them was a young girl rescued by villains.

*****************************************

“ Midoriya.” Eri jumped in her seat. “ Are you even paying attention?”

“ Uh. Y-Yes. Sir.”

“ Good. Then answer the question.” Eri nodded.

“ Homer.”

“ Oh, so you were listening.” Her teacher grinned. “ Right. Homer is not just a stupid yellow cartoon character from pre-quirk history but also the name of the man who wrote the Odyssey. Even now, that is a word used for a long journey in english.” Eri breathed. She was glad it was the same one written on the board. She looked back out of the window. On these grounds, seven years ago, another school once stood. It was a school for heroes called UA. But it was destroyed and, in its place, another high school was built. Sakura High was for everyone, just like the likes of Shiketsu were now that heroism wasn’t a viable thing to cater for. Specialised courses were still a thing students could sign up for, though ones based around quirk control weren’t called the Hero Course anymore. For Eri, removing the world hero from things just put her mind more at ease. She didn’t like the word, even if she was still in the minority about that.

History was Eri’s last lesson of the week. Then, the winter holidays would begin. She loved this time of year. It was one of the times everyone came together anymore. Everyone was usually so busy so it was nice to see all her family together again. When the bell rung, she had to fight from bursting out of her seat. “ Alright. You’re free to go. See you in the new year.” Her teacher said before raising his hands to his ears as Eri’s classmates shouted in joy. She watched, giggling softly as they all packed their bags quickly and headed for the door. Eri was slower. “ And Eri.” Her teacher stopped her. “ Tell Izuku I’ll meet him at Kurogiri’s tomorrow evening, would you?”

“ Right. I’ll see you later, Uncle Shinso.” Eri waved before leaving. Shinso simply shook his head before straightening up his paper pile and taking his leave as well. 

*****************************************

It was beginning to snow when the meeting between broker and customer began. “ My my. Didn’t expect you to be using my services.” Singularity said with a wry smile. “ I thought you ‘heroes’ used more legal methods. Oh how the mighty have fallen.”

“ Ha. Please. I was never too heroic.” King Leo told her. “ Besides, I’m more surprised you’re actually selling. Your buddies in the League are gonna be pissy at hearing this.”

“ What you do with my goods is not my problem.” She said smirking. About four years following the battle of UA, Giran decided to retire, doing what everyone else seemed to be doing and leaving his affairs to the younger generation. Ochako took his place as the best known broker in Tokyo and Musutafu, though the older man still helped her out when she needed it.

And, when it came to her best supplier, that was as always Hatsume Industries. It was still a small firm but what Mei lacked in notoriety she made up for in quality of produce. Of course, unless she knew it was going to the underground heroes that caused trouble. Then she made sure to leave a few fun surprises in store for them. A few of these surprises landed more than a few former heroes in Hades.

“ Here. You wanted a few upgrades for your quirkless tech, yeah?” Ochako asked. “ You’re lucky. The request you asked for didn’t come cheap. Alchemy drives a hard bargain.”

“ Don’t worry. I’m not stupid. I brought the Yen to pay for it. I wouldn’t waste your time.”

“ Such a charmer, Monoma.” Ochako floated a box towards him. King Leo opened it up, nodding at what he saw. He placed an envelope on the table beside him before closing the box and grabbing it from the air.

“ I appreciate your work as always, UA Traitor.” Monoma told her. Ochako shook her head.

“ Pleasure doing business with you.” She told him. “ Jackass.”

*****************************************  

Momo stretched, leaning back from her desk. “ Time for a break, I think.” It had been a while since Momo had fought anyone. After the battler of UA, she gave it all up. Instead, she decided to study the same thing her parents had. Law. But while her parents had defended corrupt heroes, Momo decided to do what she’d been doing as Forge and go on the offence to bring the proper villains to justice but this time as a prosecutor. Unfortunately, this also meant a lot of paper work. She understood now why her father had such a massive study.

“ Trouble?” Momo looked up. Shoto stood in the doorway.

“ Sometimes, I wonder why I even decided to become a lawyer.” Momo sighed. “ It’s the Yaoyorozu bloodline, I guess.” At least she wasn’t behind bars for her crimes. She wouldn’t be able to help anyone from Hades. 

“ Just like catching the assholes you toss away is a Todoroki trait?” Shoto asked. Unlike his older brother, Shoto had refused an offer from Izuku to become a Peacekeeper and instead did what Momo did and studied for a new profession. With heroes just civilians in costumes these days, Shoto decided to be official. There was an irony in one of the destroyers of Tartarus now being a police officer though neither Shoto nor Momo addressed it. “ Need help?”

“ No. You help enough. I’ve just got to sign some last things off then I’m on holiday over Christmas. Crime may not rest but I sure as hell need to from time to time.”

“ Ha. I can understand that.” Shoto said. He wrapped his arms around Momo’s neck. “ I miss you when you work too hard.”

“ Yah. I miss you too.” Momo admitted. “ Don’t worry. I promise. We’ll have plenty of time.”

*****************************************

“ I’m home.” Eri called in as she stepped through the door and took her shoes off. “ Is Dad home? Uncle Shinso gave me a message for him.”

“ Sorry. He’s still at work.”

“ Oh. That’s too bad.” Eri stepped into the living room. With everything that had changed, it came to no surprised to everyone of something that was a constant. Izuku and Toru were still together and still caring for her. Though Izuku had a pretty important job, Toru simply decided to live a normal life as a local shop hand, though she did occasionally return to being Violet in missions where a more stealthy approach was needed. Overhaul was a distant nightmare, though one that still came to her in particularly nasty dreams. Her new home life was much better. It wasn’t perfect. She didn’t get to see her family as much as she liked. Machia in particular. While most of her family was still around, he seemed to have vanished two years ago along with Sensei and a bunch of others loyal to him. Tomura mentioned something about Sensei retiring. Eri didn’t really get it but she missed Machia.

“ How was school?” Toru asked her

“ It was alright. Uncle Hitoshi is so stern when he’s teaching.” Eri laughed. “ He sorta caught me daydreaming.”

“ You mean you weren’t focusing?”

“ It’s the last day before the holidays, Mom. I’m allowed a moment of weakness.”

“ Hee hee. I know. I know. I’m just teasing.” Eri puffed her cheeks slightly in annoyance. 

“ Geez.”

“ How are your friends by the way?” Eri gasped.

“ Oh damn it. I completely forgot.” She cursed mentally before heading for the stairs. “ We all promised to be online tonight. Sorry Mom. Gotta run.”

“ Heh. I’ll tell you when Izuku gets back.” Toru promised, watching Eri dash upstairs. She laughed. It hurt, remembering what Eri used to be like back when Toru first found her in Overhaul’s basement. But it was worth every bit of hardships she’d gone to to see her grow up healthy and loved over the past seven years. She knew Izuku thought the same. After all, she’d taken after her husband in more ways than one.

*****************************************

Mina watched smirking as the once hero she and Himiko had taken out got taken away by the police. “ You two just love making my life harder, huh?” Denki asked.

“ What do you mean? He’s not dead.” Himiko told him.

“ This time.” Denki grumbled. “ You also destroyed a shop.”

“ That was Inasa’s fault, not ours.”

“ And where is Inasa? Got away again, right? Just like Bakugo did the last time?” Denki raised an eyebrow. “ If someone that large profile was in the area, we’d know. Admit it. You two are just as chaotic evil as ever.” Mina just laughed innocently. The last seven years had done little to slow down Himiko and Mina’s lust for combat nor the love each felt for each other. Izuku had though. After one too many murders of their old opposition, Izuku forced them to calm down. They were still friends, but the law was the law, more open though it may be. 

Denki, on the other hand, was now a local law enforcer and was basically assigned to be the twos handler, cleaning up after their messes. No-one in the old League wanted the two girls in jail but they were cutting it closer with each passing day. Denki honestly had to wonder how they’d stayed out of Hades the past Seven years. Probably the same way he reckoned they all weren’t. Reputation, blind luck and a deal made by Izuku. Well, complain about them though he did, the two were still good friends.

“ So. What’s up next?” Himiko asked. “ I think we’re getting good at this Bee Keeper job or whatever.”

“ I’m going to be forced to file paperwork. You two can go home and relax, I guess. Dance crazy or whatever it is you get up to these days.” Denki told the girls. “ I know we’re all meeting at Kurogiri’s this weekend for a holiday party.”

“ I know. That’ll be so fun.” Mina said, excitedly. “ It’s been forever since I saw Eri. I wanna see if her dancing has improved.”

“ Ha. I think she’s got more important things to worry about than dancing, Mina.”

“ Nothing is more important than dancing.” Mina said seriously. “ Well, almost nothing.” She put an arm around Himiko’s shoulder. “ So, shall we get going?”

“ Right. I still don’t like cops anyway. No offence, Denki.” Himiko grinned. “ See you later.”

“ Right. Right.” Denki waved them off. He watched them disappear into a nearby back alley, Mina kissing Himiko on the cheek. He sighed. He hoped they stayed out of trouble this time. He knew they wouldn’t. It wasn’t in their nature.

*****************************************

Kurogiri’s bar was shut for business until late at night. At least, that’s what the opening times said. In reality it was closed to anyone who wasn’t an old League member and that suited Izuku and Tomura just fine. “ Ugh.” Tomura groaned leaning back in his chair. “ All this bureaucratic nonsense pisses me off.”

“ You don’t even do much work.” Izuku told him. He nodded a thanks to Kurogiri as he served him his drink.

“ I’d rather just play video games without being interrupted by some whining intern who needs something signed or some suit who thinks I’m not taking things seriously enough. Why can’t you be the head of the Delegation?”

“ Cause you were our leader before. You can be our leader now.” Izuku told him. Then he smirked. “ Besides, I prefer having fun.”

“ Fucking knew it.”

“ Boys. Behave.” Hana told them with a sigh. “ As to answer your question though, brother, Sensei left you in charge when he left. I’m sure he had to do his fair share of menial tasks too when he led his empire.”

“ Ha. I’m sure he had someone for that.”

“ Hire a secretary then.” Izuku told him. 

“ Huh? Why would I bother with that? An outsider would just get things wrong.” Tomura huffed. As much as he complained about it, Izuku knew Tomura too well. From Hana’s wry smile, he knew she had the same thoughts. For all his complaints, Tomura enjoyed being relied on. This was, after all, his empire now. Sensei left it for him when he returned to the shadows with Doctor Garaki, Six, Machia and Kirei’s gang. Even if he wasn’t technically the leader of the nation, he was the leader of it’s most influential system. A place everyone looked to for aid and guidance these days. And, in the end, that meant a lot more than anyone was willing to admit.

Izuku was distracted by his phone buzzing. He hummed, taking a sip from his drink as he looked it over and then groaned. “ Work?” Hana asked.

“ Unfortunately. It’s been seven years and those bastard heroes just refuse to give up.” Izuku stretched as he stood up. “ Aizawa’s been spotted near here. So I’m gonna have to go meet up with Hiiro and deal with this.”

“ Think you’ll bag his ass this time?” Tomura asked

“ Nah. Aizawa knows the streets too well for us to ever catch him without a surprise attack.” Izuku reasoned. “ But, if he’s nearby, I can see some young heroes to be on his tail as always. And they trip up constantly.” Izuku grabbed his coat and headed for the door. “ See you this weekend?”

“ Count on it.”

“ I’ll make sure the bars empty for you all.” Kurogiri called after him.

“ Thanks, Kurogiri.” Izuku waved back at them before stepping out. He charged air into his legs and shot off into the afternoon cityscape. The war may have been over, but there was still work for him to do.

*****************************************

“ Once, there was a website known as Venality. It was set up by a boy who had his hope shattered by the reality of the world. Using it, he brought together like minded people. People with troubles and who knew hardships and suffering and the boy gave them a place to belong and help where they needed it most. And from there, they accomplished more and more and eventually saved the country, taking the real criminals that the people called their heroes and thrust them into the light. But, before then, the website was taken down. But it’s legacy couldn’t be forgotten. That’s why I…Hmm. No, that sounds too dramatic.” Eri leant back in her computer chair, tapping her arm with her finger.

Venality was something that Izuku had mentioned a few times growing up. It was how he met Toru and some of her aunts and uncles and, apparently, it was an important place to all of them that unfortunately non-existent anymore due to the former so called heroes who took it offline. About six months ago, however, after some computing courses and some help from her mother, Eri presented Izuku with a gift for father’s day. Venality back online. While he was happy, he explained it wasn’t something he needed anymore. Now, it was Eri’s turn to help people. And she had.

It started slow. Just one person under the user name “WaterHose” had joined. Apparently, he had some issues involving his parents, who had been heroes but had been killed by Muscular, who was someone Eri didn’t like at all from her short time seeing him. Eri shared her own past with him and the two bonded over past traumas. It was nice to have someone to talk to about these things. After a few weeks, another person showed up. Then another. Then a few more. There was less than a class of people on the group chat now, but Eri enjoyed having a little group of her own.

“ Ah whatever. I’ll just log on and type something.” Eri sighed. It was just the six month anniversary. She was really the only one who’d been around that long. Who cared? Well, everyone cared enough to gather but still. No need to make a big deal out of it. Eri laughed nervously. She was nervous. Perhaps it was a silly thing to be nervous about, but it didn’t change the fact she was. Venality was Izuku’s most successful project, according to him. She didn’t want to let him down or make him bad by ruining the legacy with her own site. She named hers after his. She wanted it to be perfect. She took a long, deep breath and let it out. “ Calm down, Eri.” Slowly, she placed a gloved hand on her keyboard.

 

-Unicorn has entered the Chat-

Unicorn: Hey guys. I am here.