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Sick Day

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Mitsuo hasn’t been at U.A. for long, but there are a few fundamental things that he’s learned in the few months he’s spent in class 1-A.

Number one is not to ask Present Mic about homework, either collecting or assigning it. He’s well-known for forgetting both, and it’s not unheard-of for him to just take the material off the tests when he doesn’t assign the work. This is sacred knowledge, passed down from year to year, much to the exasperation of the other teachers (particularly Aizawa-sensei, who seems more annoyed by Mic than the students).

Number two is not to try to ditch class. You will be found, and if you’re in class 1-A, Aizawa-sensei will expel you on the spot. That may or may not be a little exaggerated, but none of them have tested it; Aizawa-sensei does expel students all the time, and none of them want to be on his radar for anything other than having good grades. The man is absolutely terrifying.

Number three is not to bring grapes on campus. That’s an old rule, but no one really knows why. Mitsuo doesn’t question it.

The fourth and final truth of U.A. is that it’s pointless to hope for any teacher to be out sick. This goes double for Aizawa-sensei, who hasn’t missed a day since the infamous USJ incident from more than ten years ago. He rarely gets hurt doing hero work anymore, since he tends to spend more of his time teaching, and according to Mic-sensei, he hasn’t gotten truly sick since he was in his early twenties.

At least, not until today.

Mitsuo gapes at the small, ratlike thing in their classroom. This is the infamous Principal Nedzu, that none of them ever really see, outside of official school events.

“Aizawa will be out for a few days, and Present Mic is also home to make sure he doesn’t try anything foolish that would endanger his health,” he says, in a small voice that doesn’t match the legendary intellect hidden behind those sharp black eyes. “However, I’ve taken the liberty of contacting a few of our old students to sub in for them! Of course, as pro heros, their schedules are difficult to change, so many of them will only be here once, but consider this a chance to learn from some of today’s biggest pros.”

“Oi, rodent. You done yammering yet?”

The class goes dead silent, staring at the door in awe. There, standing in the doorway, is this year’s Number Two hero, the notoriously foul-mouthed Ground Zero.

“That I am!” Nedzu smile wags his finger at the man, looking like he’s half kidding when he says “Do your best not to traumatize them, yes?”

Ground Zero rolls his eyes so hard Mitsuo is surprised he doesn’t sprain something before looking over the class as a whole. “If they can’t handle me as a homeroom teacher for a single fucking day, I think the old man’s lost his touch.”

Nedzu doesn’t say anything before leaving, but Mitsuo gets the feeling he’s at least in partial agreement. When the classroom door closes behind him, Ground Zero sits on Aizawa-sensei’s desk, pulling one leg up and slinging an arm over it comfortably.

“So tell me,” Ground Zero says, smirking, “is Aizawa still as hardcore as he was ten years ago, or is he worse?”

It’s quiet for a minute before Kouta pipes up. “About the same. A little worse, but everyone says that’s because of your class.”

There’s an audible gasp that goes around the room; reporters have had their cameras blown up for less obvious slights to Ground Zero’s ego. Mitsuo fears for the structural integrity of Aizawa-sensei’s desk because of Kouta’s trademark sass. The kid never ceases to rise to the occasion when there’s an opportunity to pick a fight with someone, but Ground Zero? Of all the people to fight with, that might have been the worst possible person for Kouta to pick.

He nearly falls out of his chair when Ground Zero starts laughing. “Damn straight, kid. I’d be pissed if he stayed as soft as he was for our class.”

“Uncle Bakugou, if he was half as harsh with your class as he should have been you would have been expelled immediately. You’re all complete trainwrecks,” Kouta says bluntly, seeming to disregard the rest of the class. Mitsuo stares at him in shock as Kouta seems to reconsider his statement. “Except Aunt Tsuyu, she’s got her life together.”

The two of them trade insults back and forth for a moment, and Mitsuo (along with the rest of the class) watches them like a tennis match.

Mitsuo couldn’t say what possesses him, but he tentatively raises his hand. Ground Zero looks at him expectantly. “Do… Do you two know each other?”

The look on Ground Zero’s face is unreadable, but that may also have to do with the mask taking up half his face. He opens his mouth to say something, but before a single word escapes, the classroom door slams open, followed by a veritable avalanche of papers that appear to have been dropped.

“Oh, shit-- I mean, crap. I mean-- shoot. ” A flailing mass of black and yellow-- the Stungun Hero, Chargebolt. Number 23 on the charts, if Mitsuo remembers correctly. The man looks up from trying to gather all the papers again, cheeks slightly flushed as he scratches the back of his head. “Oops.”

Kouta looks at Ground Zero, his trademarked acid humor written all over his face. He points to Chargebolt. “See? Trainwreck.”

“Did I ever fucking argue?” Ground Zero asks, smirking down at Chargebolt instead of looking at the class.

“Come on Kouta-kun, don’t be so mean.” Chargebolt pouts, standing up with a newly retrieved pile of papers. “I’m a teacher today, you gotta make me look good.”

“I couldn’t even if I tried,” Kouta says, deadpan. His tone is just as blunt as it was with Ground Zero, who looks like he's this close to laughing his ass off when Chargebolt looks overdramatically offended.

Mitsuo thinks his head is going to explode.