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The Closing Act

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The week of fathers and fools acting as Izuku Midoriya ends, and another begins, a time of smooth sailing and a sweet reprieve from chaos. 

A perfect pause that heightens the tension with every passing day, until the students of class 1-A are weary, leary, and feeling as if this break is rather eerie because Izuku Midoriya has not impersonated someone since well over a week before, with it having been just over a week since Aizawa led them to the teachers’ odd assortment of acts. It is Friday, now, well past a week after the time that Aizawa was the actor and not the director, the time where Midoriya sat back and got to critique instead of receiving criticism- as if Midoriya was ever criticized for his acting, as if his acting ever truly needed the advice- and this fact grows all the more alarming with every single day.

And so it is no wonder that the class of 1-A is on edge, when Friday morning ticks ever closer to beginning, the clock becoming the focus of the room as each minute disappears, and yet their green-eyed superstar never shows. Each passing moment where the actor does not pass through the giant wooden door of their class is another that only raises the stakes, stresses the students out and excites them all the more. 

But then the bell is ringing, Friday morning finally started, and Aizawa walks into the room looking particularly pleased with himself, a sign both promising and daunting.

And then Izuku Midoriya walks in, the man of the hour.

And no one can tell who he is supposed to be.

It is not a matter of popularity, though, not a matter of no one recognizing the costume Midoriya has adorned, the personality he is portraying.

Rather, it is the fact that Midoriya has declined to wear a special costume at all.

Which is odd, but not unheard of. Midoriya has stuck within the uniform a few times, after all, usually only departing from the style during heroics. With Bakugou, with Shinsou, Midoriya had been dressed the same as everyone else. And while the class does notice his lopsided tie, the piece of fabric so strangled it would die in an instant, had it ever lived in the first place, they remember one other time that Midoriya had dressed in such a manner, and still managed to pull off his character with grace and ease.

“He’s pulling an Izura!” Denki Kaminari shouts, wide eyed, and the rest of 1-A looks at him with confusion.

“A...what?” Hanta Sero asks, and Kaminari sputters, gesturing at his peer who still stands at the front of the class, smiling and watching, waiting.

“An Izura! Or a Shigadoriya, whatever you want to call it!”

“I’m not sure I want to call it that ,” Ochako Uraraka murmurs, and many agree.

“But his tie is a mess,” Shouto Todoroki points out, always willing to observe and notice the little things, so long as said things revolve around Izuku Midoriya. “So he’s not acting.”

“No way, man,” Kaminari refutes. “He’s just doing the same thing he did when he acted as Shigaraki. Knowing our luck, he’s acting as a villain again, too! I’m not falling for the same trick twice.”

Todoroki hums, then shrugs. “Fair enough,” the boy concedes, but it’s rather unclear from his tone whether or not he believes the electric blond, a fact that causes Kaminari to pout before looking away, receiving approval from his similarly nervous peers.

And a few stand by, concerned, confused, because if Midoriya is acting- and that is still a matter to be questioned, given Todoroki’s initial belief and his complex comprehension of everything that is Midoriya, yet taking the experiences that they have all known in the past as proof that Todoroki, too, may be wrong.

And if Midoriya is acting, then who is he?

“Hey,” Hitoshi Shinsou starts, turning not to Midoriya, who now begins to move, taking steps towards his desk, the only open space, but rather to Todoroki. “Did Midoriya tell you that he’s not acting today? I know he told you the last time we got confused.”

Todoroki opens his mouth, and then closes it. Then, slowly, confused, “He didn’t.”

And that’s proof enough, is it not? That not even Todoroki can confirm such a truth, despite how Midoriya has always warned him beforehand.

And when Aizawa enters the room, takes one look at Midoriya, and grins, it is only all the more damning, that evidence.

Izuku Midoriya is acting.

And no one can tell just who he is, who he is supposed to be.

The realization is terrifying.

(The world laughs, a sound of joy and havoc.)

-----

Hizashi Yamada smiles as he approaches the classroom for 1-A, joy a simple song in his heart as he goes. His gait is easy and there is pep in every step, signs of his happiness leaking through. Because life is good, great, even, and Hizashi knows it.

It seems that Shouta does, too, because the man even offers a hint of a grin when they pass by one another. Although perhaps that is for a different reason, Shouta’s happiness. Something more to do with the fact that his chosen son has responded in kind, something to do with a conversation that Shouta has only hinted at, one that Hizashi is sure was far more emotional than the male is willing to let on. 

But that’s quite alright, because Hizashi is happy for Shouta. He’s happy that his friend finally admitted to the way that he sees Midoriya as a son, as his own, a chosen bond between the two of them. They’re a duo of chaos, surely, but Hizashi will back the found family without hesitation. 

Shouta has been smiling more often, Hizashi knows. Not just since his conversation with Midoriya, but even before. Oboro’s return has been good for them, all of them. The time that past isn’t negated, nor is the trauma that they shared. No, it wasn’t, and it never could be, not that simply. But Oboro is back , their friend that was taken far too soon has been returned, just as he used to be, and while it isn’t perfect it is more than Hizashi ever hoped for, ever allowed himself to hope for.

Because it would only have been cruel, would only have been painful, to ever hope for Oboro’s return. Because Rewind wasn’t even a Quirk in existence at the time, the knowledge of Oboro’s Noumufication had yet to come to light. Really, Hizashi never would have had the chance to hope, had it not been for Midoriya and his Mimic Quirk.

But Oboro is back, and it’s thanks to Midoriya, and it’s thanks to Midoriya’s conversation with Shouta that Shouta is happy, and life is perfect every way that Hizashi can look at it.

And so it is with the highest of spirits that Hizashi enters the room, smile radiant and hopes reaching the sky.

And then he is in the room, and it is clear from the start that something is off. Because the class of 1-A is, to be quite blunt, a mess. Some are screaming, others are looking fretfully at one specific student, and one student, Shouto Todoroki, is merely sitting calmly, looking quite at ease among the rest.

All Hizashi needs is one look at Midoriya to know. Bright green eyes peer back, a face that shows innocence and hides chaos, a passionate supernova waiting to burst with color. Unruly, wild locks match the misshapen tie around the boy’s neck, both impossibly untamed, yet somehow existing. Midoriya sits at his desk, eyes firmly on Hizashi, smile small and simple and knowing.

And Hizashi knows what Midoriya does, knows exactly who Midoriya is. 

And so he lets his smile become stiff, disbelieving. And then it drops, falling down like rain, teardrops forming to match, but remaining unreleased.

“Not him,” Hizashi whispers, letting all of the fear that he’s known these past few months build up, letting it overwhelm his entire being. “Not him .”

And then he turns and walks out of the door, slamming it behind him, listening to the wave of noise that follows the motion. There is screaming, most of the class panicking as they try to unlock the mystery that is Izuku Midoriya, and the character that he portrays. 

As for Hizashi?

As for Hizashi, the man turns away from the door, letting out a wheeze as a grin breaks out across his face. He snorts a moment after, when the screaming only gets louder, the chatter more intense. 

“We’re going to die !” Ashido yells, a muffled wail through the door, and Hizashi cups his hands over his mouth to keep any laughter from escaping, lest Shouji or Jirou hear the noise.

And just like that, he knows that, yes, today will be a great day. A perfect one to remember, a key memory in the making. 

And all Hizashi has to do is play along, an easy enough task.

Perhaps he should join in on Midoriya and Shouta’s chaos more often. It’s rather fun, after all.

But that’s not the focus of the day. No, today is simply about enjoying himself...and enjoying the fear that 1-A has, a panic that only grows with every passing class, their classmate’s character unknown.

As if he’s truly playing a character at all.

-----

The bell for lunch rings, and the students of 1-A race for the door, freedom a merciful reprieve, the time that has finally arrived acting as a sweet break from whatever is happening within the walls of their classroom.

Because nobody is quite sure who Midoriya is. Nobody can tell who he is supposed to be, or why Aizawa has chosen a character that is so similar to Midoriya- or at least appears to be that way. There is no challenge, after all, in staying quite the same, in being someone that acts just like himself, and yet Aizawa seems to have chosen to do exactly that. 

And perhaps there is a meaning, hidden underneath it all. Perhaps Aizawa has some special reason, some hidden motivation for why he would choose such a choice, would decide on such a decision. Perhaps he is trying to give Midoriya a break of sorts, or perhaps the person Midoriya is acting as is someone important to Aizawa. Perhaps today is merely some sick joke that only Aizawa and Midoriya know the punchline to, a way to break the psyche of 1-A while keeping up an innocent facade. 

Nobody is quite sure, because nobody is quite sure of anything, today. All that they are sure of is that the bell has rang, that lunch has begun, and that the students of 1-A are free to run for their lives, for their sanity, and get a break from whatever mind game Aizawa is playing with them.

And so many run, when this bell rings, with only a few taking a moment to hesitate. Hitoshi Shinsou, for one, who pauses just long enough to look at Midoriya before shaking his head, walking out, knowing that the day will be amusing in the end but far too tired to try dealing with it in the present moment. Katsuki Bakugou is another, the blond glaring at Midoriya before moving forwards, closer to the greenet.

And Midoriya turns, greets his childhood friend, and the blond smirks, a hint of mirth in his eyes as he leans back.

“Good job, Icy Hot,” Bakugou says, a rare hint of praise, and then he’s sauntering out of the door, cocky and content.

And so all that is left is Shouto Todoroki, who smiles at Midoriya before taking out his own meal.

“Want to eat together?” Todoroki asks, and Midoriya beams.

“Sure! That sounds great, Todoroki!”

And so when the bell rings for lunch, and most of the class disappears from sight, two remain behind, eating peacefully in the quiet.

And the story continues.

-----

When Izuku Midoriya showed up at the teacher’s lounge just ten minutes before Toshinori Yagi planned to leave and head back to his on-campus apartment, Toshinori had been worried over what his successor could need help with. When Midoriya had simply requested his presence, Toshinori had been more than willing to offer it, setting aside his work and giving his boy his full attention.

And oh, had it been interesting, the information that Midoriya had given him in return. A warning in advance, far more than a hint for what was to come the very next day.

And Toshinori had been more than willing to go along with it, eager enough to help.

And now it is the next day, a beautiful Friday. It is a wonderful day, and the class of 1-A, sans for a few exceptions, exceptions that Toshinori has come to expect, is more fretful than ever before.

Because they do not understand the bright smiles that Midoriya is offering. They cannot comprehend why Midoriya is so clearly acting, and yet so similar to the boy that they know. They cannot connect the dots so blatantly before them, ones that Todoroki, according to Aizawa, had openly pointed out to them. 

And when Toshinori greets them all with enthusiasm, they do not seem to understand his lack of concern. And this, Toshinori knows, is Yamada’s doing, the Voice Hero having played his part well, acting horrified by Midoriya’s character, as if Midoriya is acting as some terrifying villain, some person who sparks fear into every heart with his name alone.

This duality is one that throws 1-A only farther off of the path, only confuses them more instead of revealing the truth.

And this is exactly what Midoriya had hoped for, what he had asked for after being given the assignment. One of the most simple, and yet most difficult, projects that Midoriya could ever be given, a personality swap that works well only if done correctly, if his boy plays his cards right, uses the traits known and twists them just so, so that the resemblance is uncanny and yet there is something keeping 1-A on their toes.

Yes, Toshinori Yagi had been more than happy to help when Midoriya asked for assistance.

Because when Izuku Midoriya is assigned to act as himself, Toshinori will support him as best as he can.

It’s rather Plus Ultra, is it not?

Toshinori smiles, content.

The day is good.

-----

Shouto Todoroki likes to believe that he knows Izuku Midoriya rather well. Midoriya is his first friend, after all, the one who broke through his walls and forced his way right into Shouto’s heart as easily as he had shattered the icy walls Shouto had sent his way during the Sports Festival.

And that is where it all began, that Sports Festival. For Shouto, at least, that is where the spark had first been struck. It was just an ember, that flame, but it grew with time. With every word spoken, every smile created just for him, every offer of company or advice or simply just understanding, that little spark was fanned, growing and warming Shouto’s heart from the inside out, until he, too, was smiling and happy and enjoying the time he spent with his peers, with the people Midoriya had brought his way and turned into friends.

Midoriya has always had Shouto’s attention. At first it was one of envy, a rivalry born of misunderstandings, of secrets far too great, secrets that Shouto is now honored to know, to be one of the few entrusted with a legacy of information. Midoriya was so clearly All Might’s successor, his protege, and Shouto had seen it, even if he had made the wrong assumptions, and he had felt the urge to speak to Midoriya, to confront him.

And even when Midoriya denied his relations to All Might- a truth, Shouto knows, although the past few months have taught him that family does not have to be by blood to be true, has seen the way that both Aizawa and All Might care for the green-haired supernova as their own, even if each show it in different ways- Shouto had still wanted to share his story with the greenet, had still been drawn to him, a moth to a flame of determination.

Shouto thinks that this is one of the best decisions that he has ever made, to this very day. Taking the plunge, letting his past be known...the fact that he had turned to Midoriya of all people is a fact he will always be grateful for.

Because Midoriya had responded, bright and bold and forcing Shouto to keep his eyes on the boy and listen . He had shattered himself for Shouto’s sake, breaking bone after bone, scarring himself permanently, for the sake of Shouto’s wellbeing, for his future.

Just so Shouto could remember that his power was his own.

And then came Hosu, and the text that Midoriya sent. Vague, nothing more than a location, Shouto hadn’t known what to think other than one thing, that his friend was in danger. His friend, his first friend, the first person to ever reach out and pull him to safety, they were not safe.

It didn’t take Shouto more than a moment to start running, to leave his father behind in order to help Midoriya.

Because the heroes could handle Hosu alone, could handle the fires and flames and Noumus by themselves. 

But Midoriya had asked for help, had called for it, and Shouto was never one to leave a favor unreturned.

And so Shouto ran to Midoriya, and there he found the boy, wild eyed and paralyzed, Iida on the floor beside him, the Hero Killer himself standing over them both. And he had reacted, had poured his heart and soul into protecting the person who brought his fire out, to protect Midoriya and their classmate, and he pushed beyond Plus Ultra and then gave even more, even as Midoriya stood up.

Shouto still remembers that moment, when Midoriya got back up. The first to break through Stain’s paralysis, and all the more determined for it. He had been breathtaking, lightning dancing across his skin, energy emanating from him like a wave, pushing and pulling and drawing Shouto all the more in. He had found control of his power, of One for All, a Quirk he had been gifted just before the Entrance Exam, in just three short days of interning under an old, retired Pro Hero.

He had been exhilarating, a source of adrenaline of his own, a supernova lighting the alley and lighting the way, leading them to victory.

That was when Shouto learned of Midoriya’s courage, his bravery. That was when Shouto next saw the glimpse of who Midoriya would one day be, the hero he was becoming. It was not the first time, no, the first time would forever be the Sports Festival, with uncontrolled surges of power and an endless ambition to match, but it was the first time that Shouto could truly envision it, with Midoriya able to sustain himself without injury.

Not that Midoriya came out of the fight without injury.

Not that that ever stopped him from getting up, from jumping right back into the fray.

And Shouto kept learning about Midoriya. Every fight, every villain, every obstacle...Midoriya surpassed them all, no matter the cost. And Shouto learned more every single time. 

He learned of Midoriya’s true perseverance during the exams, seeing the footage, seeing how the greenet had managed to convince Bakugou, of all people, to work alongside him. (And, oh, how Shouto had wanted to give Bakugou a taste of his own medicine, when he learned just how cruel the blond had been to the boy that has long since captured Shouto’s admiration. But Midoriya is forgiving, and Bakugou is repenting, and Shouto will respect Midoriya’s wishes because Midoriya has always respected his in kind, and that is what it means to be equal, to be fair, even if it leaves a sour taste in his mouth despite how Bakugou does his best to make amends each and every day.

Shouto has never been a fan of letting his loved ones be hurt, after all. But he understands the act of setting aside one’s feelings for the sake of something more. It is why he never went after his father for the past, never tried to bring everything to light. But his father has changed, has settled, has stopped pushing for Shouto to be better and instead has been pushing himself, and so has Bakugou. So while Shouto will likely never see eye to eye with his father, will never truly forgive Endeavor for what he has done...he will let Midoriya take the reins in his own story, will support Midoriya as he rekindles his friendship with Bakugou.

It seems that Midoriya has taught him tolerance, too.)

But the present is not the past, and the past was a sight of its own, one that Shouto will not dismiss simply because of changes in the current, or even in spite of these changes. Midoriya was impressive, during the final exam, and Shouto could not help but be proud of his friend when he heard the victory sound chime, All Might cuffed, defeated.

To Shouto, it was just a sign of a successor reaching his next stage, Midoriya just one step closer to becoming the symbol Shouto knows that he will be.

And then there was the summer camp, and Kamino, and both times Shouto learned of Midoriya’s hero complex, his insatiable urge to give and save and protect despite not giving himself a chance to rest, to heal. He fought with his all, went so Plus Ultra past his limits that he nearly put his arm out of commission, and yet to this day Shouto knows that Midoriya’s only regret was not saving Bakugou on the first night, when the initial attack occurred. He did not regret nearly dying to save one little boy, he did not regret the damage done to himself, and he did not regret the near expulsion that he faced for heading to Kamino to rescue his childhood friend.

And Shouto saw this all, along for the right throughout the entirety of the rescue. 

He could not leave Midoriya unprotected, after all. Shouto would keep his friend safe, because he had learned that Midoriya often forgot to protect himself, only remembered others.

But that was okay, because Shouto knew, and the rest of their main friend group was able to say the same, and so they could protect him, because that's what friends did.

Summer turned into the Provisional License Exam, and that’s where Shouto saw Midoriya’s temper, the first time the boy had ever truly been frustrated. And it had been with him, with his fight that he had with Yoarashi, nearly harming another contestant in the process. It had been yet another learning moment thanks to the boy who stole his heart, and Shouto was grateful for it, shame set aside.

And then the personality swap assignments began, and Shouto began to learn all the more. He learned of Midoriya’s confidence, of his adaptability, of his eagerness to try new things and put ideas to the test. He learned that Midoriya is far more than even he had come to believe, and learned that nothing could stop Midoriya from reaching his goals, not if there was an endpoint in sight. 

And he learned Midoriya’s secrets, a rough past and a Quirkless status come to light, the weight of the world on the shoulders of his own savior, a weight eight generations long, now on the back of the ninth. He learned of bullies and people who never believed, learned of teachers who failed him and who tried to make him fail, and how Midoriya pushed through nonetheless, because all Midoriya ever wanted was to be a hero, was to help even though no one had bothered to help him, not until All Might, not until Yuuei.

Yes, if Shouto knows one thing, it is Izuku Midoriya.

And that is why he knows that Midoriya is indeed acting, but not as someone else.

No, Midoriya is acting as himself.

Because Shouto knows the little things, about Midoriya. Knows the way that his friend ties his tie- awfully, although Shouto knows that Midoriya can do it properly, and also knows that he’d be happy to tie Midoriya’s tie for him every single day for the rest of their lives, if only for that moment of closeness between them, something just for them- and how he tries to tame his hair, but inevitably gives up unless it’s for an assignment. He knows that Midoriya is kind and giving, a type of generosity that exceeds all expectations, one that knows no bounds even when it risks his own safety, his own chances and health. He knows that Midoriya is smart and clever, that Midoriya knows exactly what chaos he can cause with a mere look, that the boy knows precisely what he is doing, by hesitating his act ever so slightly, giving a bit of pause that differentiates sincerity from the mask he wears, his own face but fake nonetheless. 

And Shouto knows that Midoriya doesn’t always know, doesn’t always understand the effect that he has on people. He knows that Midoriya is a blessing, a gift from whatever higher being there may be up above, but he knows that Midoriya does not see this. He knows that Midoriya is the closest to perfect that a person ever could be, not quite there, but in a way that is understandable, a way that makes him human, just as he should be. Because Shouto knows that perfection is not something that someone can reach- how could he not, when Shouto himself was born of the hopes of being a perfect creation?- but Shouto knows that Midoriya is good. He is good , and he is the definition of the dreams of a hero.

And Shouto knows that, with every passing day, he falls for Izuku Midoriya a little bit more, the warmth in his heart only growing, a bonfire that rages through and through.

Shouto likes to believe that he is a simple soul. He has needs and wants, much like any other individual. And one thing that he wants, that he’s wanted to do for quite some time, is to confess his feelings to the person that he admires so dearly. And while Shouto also wants to stay alive, to stay away from Aizawa’s parental anger, he is only human, and humans fall for temptation far too easily for Shouto’s wellbeing.

Truly, Aizawa should have known that this would happen. Especially with Midoriya acting as himself, as the person Shouto fell for.

And so it is with just thirty seconds left before the bell that Shouto turns to his friend, earning his attention.

“Midoriya,” Shouto says, the first to say his name today, to say it directly to his face, and Shouto knows the rest of his peers are watching when Midoriya responds.

“Yes, Todoroki?”

And the response is encouraging, an assurance, but the smile on Midoriya’s face is all the more worthwhile, the final nudge to push him over the edge, words tumbling out and over until Shouto is asking, “Will you go out with me tonight?”

The bell rings, and the world falls silent.

But Midoriya is still smiling, face reddening but not upset, not affronted by the question. 

“I’d love to!” Midoriya says, and the world feels right.

And then the world feels restricting, a familiar feeling encompassing Shouto, one that he hasn’t felt since the final exams at the end of the first term, and Shouto finds himself being pulled out of his seat by a white capture weapon, the source glaring down at him with narrowed red eyes.

“We’re going to have a chat,” Aizawa says, and that is the only warning Shouto gets before he gets dragged out of the door.

But just before the door closes, Shouto gets one last look at his friend, at the person who he has fallen for so deeply. And Midoriya is still smiling. A bit concerned, a bit confused, but still blushing and happy.

“I’ll see you tonight!” Midoriya calls out, and then Aizawa is slamming the door shut, his glare a promise of the shovel talk yet to come.

And Shouto knows one thing.

It’s worth it.

Kami, he should have done this sooner.

-----

If one were to look at the entirety of Katsuki Bakugou’s relationship with Izuku Midoriya, they wouldn’t be wrong in their assumption that Katsuki has been awful to the greenet. They wouldn’t be wrong at all, and Katsuki knows it. He bullied his childhood friend for years, all over a point of pride, a matter of feeling inferior and needing to be superior, a belief that Izuku could not do the same thing that Katsuki could, all because of something as uncontrollable as Quirks.

Katsuki was a piece of shit, plain and simple. He was awful, the furthest he ever could be from hero material. And he knows this, now. He knows how bad he was, how cruel he had been to Izuku. Working with Hound Dog has taught him this, seeing the full picture has made him see how dark his part had been, how grating it was.

And Katsuki knows that, although Izuku has forgiven him, although Izuku is moving past the past, although Izuku is getting better and so is Katsuki, so is their friendship, Katsuki will never fully forgive himself for what he has done to Izuku.

It also means that Katsuki won’t stand by, should someone else hurt Izuku. He won’t let Izuku deal with the same shitty hand twice, won’t let that sort of deck get forced onto him.

So when Icy Hot asks Izuku out, right in front of the entire fucking class, Katsuki Bakugou is the one waiting outside of the teacher’s lounge.

Because Aizawa isn’t the only one who wants to have a talk with the dual-haired, angsty protagonist looking bastard.

Freezerburn looks like shit when he walks out, a fact that Katsuki finds no sympathy for, because the idiot knew what he was signing up for, asking Izuku in front of his goddamn father figure. Really, it’s as if he wanted to die.

“Ready for round two, bitch?” Katsuki asks, and all he gets in response is a tired and somewhat terrified expression.

“Please be quick,” Icy Hot says. “I’d like to go on my date soon, and alive preferably. I don’t want to leave Midoriya waiting.”

Katsuki huffs, not wanting to upset Izuku by forcing him to be late. The nerd was excited, freaking out over Todoroki’s ‘confession’- as if that could be considered a confession, when all he did was ask Izuku out- the moment the door had been shut.

“I had a feeling he might have liked me,” Izuku had said, face bright red and smile somehow even fucking brighter. “But I didn’t know if that was just the Quirk making me assume things!”

“You only realized...because of Mimic?” Mindfuck had asked, and Katsuki had almost questioned the same thing.

But it’s Izuku, and Katsuki has known Izuku since he’s known his own damn name.

“Of course it took a Quirk,” Katsuki butted in. “Damn nerd is oblivious as all else.”

“Kacchan!” Izuku had scolded, but there was no heat, no anger.

Only joy.

And Katsuki won’t interfere with that, won’t dampen Izuku’s smile by making him wait on his precious date. So he can do quick.

Doesn’t mean he’ll go easy.

“You want this fast?” Katsuki asks, letting a smile show, one that’s ugly and something more like a snarl, making Icy Hot widen his eyes. “Alright, we can do this fast.”

Katsuki crosses his arms, glares at the boy who can either make Izuku happier than he’s ever been, or ruin everything and set back all of the progress that Izuku has gotten the chance to make once he was free of Aldera, was free of the past that Katsuki helped to create.

“When you go on your date tonight, you’re going to be a gentleman. You’re going to be polite and you are going to do your best to make everything as great as it possibly can be.”

“This doesn’t seem very….threatening,” Icy Hot admits, and Katsuki scowls.

“Shut the fuck up! Fine! You want threatening?” Katsuki jabs Icy Hot in the chest, watches him recoil. “You treat him right or I’m going to personally see that you never see again. Your mother will have nothing on me when I’m done.”

“Low blow,” Icy Hot says, and Katsuki huffs, then steps back.

“Right, whatever. The point is, you better treat Deku right, got it? Don’t you dare hurt him, he’s already been hurt enough.”

“You would know.”

Katsuki takes in the icy glare being sent right back, and he sighs, letting his arms drop, hands dipping into his pockets instead.

“I would,” Katsuki admits. “I know what I’ve done, and I won’t do it again. And I refuse to let anyone else do it instead. So don’t fuck this up, you hear? If he cries, and it’s anything less than happy tears, I’ll fucking kill you. Understood?”

“Understood.”

“Good.” Katsuki pauses, then shakes his head. “There. We’re done. Go get ready for your date. Deku likes katsudon, there’s a good place for it nearby.”

“I know.” Icy Hot studies him, then nods. “Thank you. I’m...glad that you’re trying to make amends with Midoriya.”

“Shut the fuck up,” Katsuki says instantly, and Icy Hot nods again before turning and walking, heading down the hall and out of sight.

And Katsuki stands behind, right outside of the teacher’s lounge.

And things...things feel right.

Katsuki turns, goes the other way, makes a mental note to get some of the snacks Izuku likes for later. He knows his friend far too well, and knows that Izuku will want to ramble endlessly about his date when he comes back to the dorms tonight. So he’ll be prepared, because he knows that Todoroki will listen, will want to make Izuku happy.

And he knows that Izuku will be happy, because Izuku has been. Because Yuuei is good for Izuku, 1-A is good for Izuku, the father figures and rat mentor that Izuku has gained are good for Izuku.

And Katsuki will be good for Izuku, too. They all will be.

Katsuki isn’t perfect, and he might never reach perfection...but he’s content.

(The world settles, fate relaxing, time continuing onwards forevermore.

The curtain closes, the actors reaching their happy ending.

And all that remains is the final bows.)