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Silver Fire

Chapter Text

A pair of hands, dark-skinned and perfectly manicured, slammed down on the desk in front of you. Without looking up from the paperwork you were filling out, you hummed acknowledgement. The owner of the hands was panting, having clearly run from her own office to yours. You used the time it took her to catch her breath to finish filling out your report.

"Start packing," she finally said.

"Excuse me?" You muttered, turning the page over to start filling out the back side.

"There's gonna be an emergency, and you have to be there to heal someone, but we're in the wrong country."

"And what country are we supposed to be in?" You asked, finally looking up from your papers.

"I... Don't know." Her hair was in a bun at the base of her neck, but the run from her office to yours had knocked a few micro braids out of it.

"Have you ever had a premonition that specifically told you to go to another country before?" You stood, tucking your own (h/c) hair behind an ear.

"No, but I'm absolutely certain that we're in the wrong country right now." You could tell that it was a true premonition because her normally brown eyes were glittering gold.

"Okay, Inara, sit down. Let's figure the details, and go from there." You went to the mini fridge next to your desk and pulled out two bottles of water, passing one to Inara. Inara did as she was told, taking deep breaths to settle herself.

"(Y/N), I think this is the biggest premonition I've had since that earthquake two years ago," Inara said, staring down at her hands.

"That's alright," you said calmly, settling back into your chair. You tucked the unfinished paperwork into its respective folder and set it aside, pulling out your notebook instead.

"Let's start with when ," you said, clicking your pen.

--

The trip from America to Japan was more exhausting than expected, and Inara suggested getting a hotel immediately. The walk to your hotel, however, brought you past a restaurant that smelled too good to ignore. A tug on Inara's sleeve and a finger pointed at the building was all it took to convince your childhood friend that the detour would be worth it.

You were teaching Inara how to hold her chopsticks when someone decided to interrupt. That someone was an oversized crocodile-looking fellow that insisted his plate didn't match what he'd ordered. How that drove him to swinging a clawed fist at the waiter was beyond you, but you didn't get your hero's license to watch waitstaff get smacked around. With a sigh, you set down your chopsticks and stood up.

"Leave it alone, friend," you said tiredly. "No one wants trouble here. Why not have the staff bring out the plate you did order?"

"NOT GOOD ENOUGH!" He yelled, turning toward you. You glared at him, crossing your arms.

"Why not? Getting arrested over some sashimi doesn't seem worth it to me." He just roared, charging you now. Inara yelped, falling backward out of her chair as she tried to stand up.

Just as you shifted your weight to better receive your new guest, the door to the restaurant slammed open and your opponent stumbled to a stop, turning toward the interruption.

"Hey, you. Villain. Stop interrupting people’s dinner.” The man standing in the doorway was tall, muscular... And quite literally on fire.

"WRONG PLATE!" The crocodile yelled, now turning toward the flaming man.

" He's lost it," you noted drily as Croc charged Fireball. Fireball didn’t hesitate, putting his hand directly in the crocodile’s face and shooting fire right into it. You watched with a mixture of horror and amusement as the crocodile sank to the floor, unconscious.

Looking around, you spotted the waiter that had been struck and walked up to him. His face was a bloody mess, three or more cuts running from one corner of his face up and around to his forehead. It was hard to see details through the blood. The woman he'd collapsed into was in hysterics, but at least your new patient was unconscious.

"Settle down, Miss," you said in your best hero-voice. It wasn't much, but Inara was already approaching, so you let your friend take the woman's attention while you turned to the waiter.

Turning him so that he lay flat on his back, you pressed a finger under the corner of his jaw and touched your other palm to his forehead. Silver lines spread from your touch across his skin at jagged angles that reminded you of lightning bolts. Lightning quirk? You wondered, only vaguely curious. Such a small injury healed almost instantly, the skin pulling back into place and closing itself up neatly. Though his face was still covered in blood, you could tell he wouldn't have a scar. A quick check on his brain told you that there was no concussion; he'd probably passed out from simple shock. His nose had nearly come off, after all.

You were wiping the man's face off with a nearby napkin when a shadow passed ominously overhead. Ignoring Fireboy, you reached for a glass of clear liquid from the bar in front of you. Sniffing it, you grimaced.

"Sake," you muttered, setting the drink back down and looking around.

“Did you just use your quirk on this man?” His voice was gruff, and you had the impression that he was one of those people that was perpetually unhappy.

"Yes," you said shortly, "and now I'm looking for water to clean his face off. He'll wake up soon." As if on cue, the man on the floor let out a small groan.

"That’s against the law without a hero permit,” he said. You straightened up, turning to look at him. His arms were crossed in front of his chest, and you realized that his beard was on fire. Or, more accurately, his fire was in the shape of a beard.

"Well, good thing I have one of those," you answered, stepping around him to reach for promising-looking cup. Another sniff, and you were disappointed again. You should have known from the bubbles on the side of the glass that it would be soda.

"I don’t believe you. Show me your license, foreigner.”

"Only if you help me find a cup of water," you growled, already reaching into your pocket. He narrowed his eyes at you, then turned to one of the waiters that had gathered nearby.

"You. Bring a cup of water."

"Y-yes, Mr. Endeavor!" The waiter answered nervously. He practically tripped over himself to get behind the restaurant counter. By his reaction, you guessed you ought to have recognized Fireboy already. Pulling your hero license out, you offered it to the flaming idiot in front of you.

"I haven't gotten a Japanese permit, yet, but I'm told that an American license is still enough around here."

"...It is," he said, inspecting the plastic ID carefully. The inspection took longer than it should have, but finally he let out a huff of annoyance. "Dr. (L/N)." He handed the license back to you, and you shoved it back into your wallet.

"Thank you," you muttered, turning toward the waiter as he returned with an entire pitcher of water. The man on the floor had sat up, looking up at Fireboy - no, Endeavor -  with fear in his eyes. You took the pitcher of water and sank down to the man on the floor, dipping another napkin into the water.

"Thank you, Endeavor." The injured waiter said nervously, completely ignoring you. With a grimace, you took his chin in your hand and forced him to turn toward you.

"Thank him later," you ordered, "I need to make sure I healed you properly, first."

"(Y/N)," Inara said in her most exhasperated voice, "he's clearly meeting someone he idolizes." Inara spoke in English, still a beginner at Japanese. You grunted in response, wiping the man's face off with the damp cloth.

"That’s a certified hero you’re talking to, boy. Treat your doctor with respect.”

"Well, you'll be alright," you said, straightening up, "but please eat more broccoli." Endeavor was still glaring at you when you turned away from the waiter. You frowned up at him, wondering why he was still around.

"Why you would tell him to eat more broccoli?" He asked, scowl still in place.

"Iron deficiency. Don't you have a crocodile to arrest?" You turned back toward your table to find Inara standing uncomfortably close, staring openly at the big man. "Inara." She jumped, blushing at your raised eyebrow.

"I didn’t account for his reptiilian anatomy," he admitted. "You should probably heal him or he’ll have to be admitted to the hospital."

"Fine," you grumbled, shoving her hands into your pockets and turning back toward the entrance. Two tables had been overturned in the chaos, but the waitstaff was already picking it up, some of them still sneaking glances at Endeavor.

The villain was, indeed, injured by the flames. It barely took a tap from your finger to fix him up, sending a rush of cooling energy and healing some minor burns, and by then the police had arrived. You watched with detached interest as the police interviewed Endeavor and packed their latest villain up into the back of one of their trucks. When they turned to you, you had to resist the urge to scowl. Was being left alone long enough to eat dinner really too much to ask?

Several minutes of answering questions - and a few compliments on your Japanese from the officer that interviewed you - and the police were on their way. Endeavor looked around, as if deciding where to go next, and caught your eye once more. You returned his look with a raised eyebrow.

"Can I help you?" You asked drily. Inara was standing behind you again, though this time she wasn't standing as close. That only really happened when she was nervous, and the danger had passed.

"Just stay out of my way, next time.” With that, the giant fireball produced flames out of his hands and feet and flew away. You watched him go for a moment, impressed by how fast he managed to move.

"Let's get back to- Inara?" Inara was staring after Endeavor, eyes glittering gold and full of tears. "What is it?" You switched to English, knowing that she would be too distracted to translate from Japanese.

" That's it," she whispered as a tear trickled down her cheek. You grabbed her by the shoulders, steadying her and sending in a little bit of comforting warmth with your quirk. " That's what we're here for."

" What is, Inara?" You asked, shaking her slightly. You'd never seen her so upset by one of her premonitions - not even when she'd sensed the upcoming death of your father. "Inara!"

" He is," she finally said, eyes fading back to dark brown. She stepped closer to you and rested her head on your shoulder, shaking with sobs. After a moment of hesitation, you wrapped your arms around your friend, letting her lose herself into your shoulder.

Chapter Text

You’d never considered yourself the teaching type, but Inara insisted that you would do well at it. You’d taught once or twice in learning hospitals, giving on-the-job training in emergency rooms and the like, but you’d never been put in charge of a classroom. And certainly not in charge of a classroom full of teenagers.

Thankfully, your new employer - Principal Nedzu, who wasn’t human but didn’t seem to be a mouse, bear, or any other definable animal - didn’t throw you into the fire on your first day. He put you with other teachers, some of whom welcomed your assistance in the classroom and some of whom ignored it entirely. You’d arrived at the end of the school year, with only a few weeks left before graduation and the start of a new year.

Since you only worked part-time, you were able to spend your free time building a curriculum for a general health education class the coming year. The school nurse, Recovery Girl, had taught a few lessons over the years, but Principal Nedzu wanted a greater focus on health and basic first aid for the next year of students. When you saw a student try to make a friend’s leg stop bleeding with a tourniquet, you could understand why. Letting a hero loose in a rescue situation when their first instinct was to cut off all bloodflow to an entire limb, instead of literally anything else, would lead to disaster.

Lost in your thoughts about heroes and first aid lessons, you didn’t really pay attention to where you were walking. Getting lost in the city could be dangerous, you knew, but you also knew it was the best way to learn your way around. And an even better way to find a good restaurant or two to try out.

Naturally, you were more than a little surprised to hear a familiar voice yelling your old hero name, Silver, from across the street. Turning to look at the source of the noise, you winced. Standing on the sidewalk across the way was a gangling boy with bright green, spiked hair and way too much plaid on. He was grinning, using his entire arm to wave at you frantically. With a sigh of resignation, you waved back at him and crossed the street before he could come rushing over.

“Mike,” you said as soon as you were within hearing of the boy, “what are you doing in Japan? You’re only - what - fourteen? You shouldn’t be alone in a foreign country.”

“I’m fifteen!” He only seemed mildly offended that you’d forgotten his age. “Almost sixteen! And I’m not alone, I came here with Tremor!” Ice ran down your back when you heard that name, and it took you a moment (and a deep breath) before you could respond to the boy.

“Tremor. Is in Japan. Mike, why are either of you in Japan?”

“To visit you, of course! I wanted to catch up, since we haven’t spoken in six years. And Tremor said he needed to tell you something. I think he wants to apologize, since you two split on pretty bad terms.”

“Right. Great. I’m sure he wants to apologize. Listen, Mike, let’s go somewhere quiet. We can catch up in a tea shop or something.” You looked around, trying to decide which way would work best.

“There’s a cafe one block that way!” Mike said excitedly, pointing. You nodded and got to walking.

“Where exactly is Tremor right now, Mike?”

“I’m not sure,” he admitted. “I told him you would probably come this way, since you turned left last time and you’re learning the area again.”

“I’m… what?”

“You learn the area every time you go to a new city by choosing random directions to walk in! You turned left when tracked you on the camera systems yesterday, so I knew you’d turn right this time. At that one street, with the convenience store.”

“Mike, that’s… really creepy. You were watching me with cameras?”

“Yeah! I showed it to Tremor, too! He says it would be really good for hero work in the future. He thinks I’d make a good side-kick, can you believe? Maybe I can be your sidekick, when you come back to the US?”

“I.. we’ll see.” You were going to have to make some very serious phone calls when you got home today.

--

Inara was trying desperately to find a word she recognized on the menu in front of her when one of her premonitions struck. The whole world got just a little bit glittery, and she had the sudden urge to turn to her left - toward the street. Grimacing, Inara set the menu down and stood, exiting the restaurant as inconspicuously as she could manage. A girl with dark skin and golden eyes wandering the street wasn’t quite as strange as a girl with dark skin, golden eyes, and a panicked look on her face would be.

As soon as she was in the street, that little tug at the back of her head told her to turn to her right. As soon as she did, a man who glowed gold appeared in her line of vision. Blinking several times, Inara was able to get the worst of the glitter out of the way so she could make out who she was looking at.

He was a big, buff man in a dark blue onesie and covered in fire. His boots were on fire. His shoulders were on fire. His hair was on fire - hell, the man’s beard was on fire. Inara recognized him through the haze of her quirk and grimaced. She hadn’t been overly impressed with the man’s attitude at the diner when Inara’s best friend had tried to take on a crocodile, but at least she knew the man was capable of fighting.

“Excuse me,” Inara said, approaching the flaming guy directly. There was no point in beating around the bush here - he was needed, and Inara’s quirk wouldn’t leave her alone until he knew when and where he would be needed.

“I don’t have time for autographs, girl,” he said dismissively, stepping around Inara. Scowling, she grabbed his arm.

“I don’t want your autograph, asshole. My quirk lets me see when and where someone needs to be, and right now it’s telling me you’re needed elsewhere. You’re a hero, right?”

“Why should I believe anything you say?” He snapped, towering over Inara. If her quirk hadn’t been active at the moment, Inara would have been afraid of the man. That, or very turned on by all the muscles she could see through his skin-tight jumpsuit. But, for now at least, all Inara could see or think about was the gold flakes gathering in his eyes and fists.

“Don’t know, don’t care. Ask me which direction you need to go. I can’t just tell you; my quirk doesn’t work that way.” He seemed to consider Inara’s offer, eyes narrowing. Inara, impatient, crossed her arms in front of her and glared right back. He seemed to approve of her boldness, and finally grunted, some of the tension in his shoulders easing away.

“North or South?”

--

You didn’t know if Mike was in on Tremor’s plot, or just extremely easy for the man to manipulate. But there he was - sitting at the first table to the right of the cafe’s entrance, in his costume and staring you down with eyes so green that they seemed almost to glow. His black hair was long and tangled, coated in enough grease to make your skin crawl. He had a scruff of a beard, and you began to wonder how long it had been since he’d showered or shaved. Even his uniform, black, white and green, looked unwashed and wrinkled. The moment you saw him, you turned around and walked right back out of the cafe. Mike stood in the entryway, looking absolutely dumbfounded by your response. Clearly, the boy had thought you would be happy to see Tremor.

The boy didn’t know how much Tremor wanted you dead. As you power-walked in a random direction, you remembered the first day you’d met Tremor. He’d unburied you from a pile of rubble, apologizing for not getting to you sooner. Those bright green eyes had been full of kindness and genuine concern. His costume had fit perfectly, drawing attention to exquisitely toned muscles in all the right ways. His hair had been trimmed roughly, as if by his own hand, into something resembling a fade. Just the right amount of rough-around-the-edges to draw your attention. Damn, what a fool you'd been in those days.

It didn’t take him long to catch up with you. In your near-panicked state, you felt like you could feel every move he made, sense every soul on the street. He would take out the whole block if you didn’t stop him. As a hand reached toward your shoulder, you ducked to the side and spun, stopping just behind Tremor and glaring at his sweaty back. Before he could react properly, you aimed a fist at his side, putting all of your weight behind the punch as it collided with his lowest rib. He groaned, stumbling to the side. Dancing away, you started to miss your old weapons.

Though you got the first hit in, the fight didn’t actually go in your favor. Tremor had always been better at close combat than you, and he had a quirk that made his punches considerably more effective in a fight: anywhere those hands came into contact with would be struck with a... well, tremor. His hits had the force of a small earthquake behind them, and you’d seen him destroy someone’s arm so badly that the doctors had opted to amputate rather than piece it back together.

As soon as Tremor started fighting back, you were reduced to dodging and dancing out of the way of those deadly fists. Deflecting his shots worked well enough, but you were losing ground quickly. Looking behind you for an escape route was the mistake of a lifetime.

--

Inara followed the flaming hero as he walked in the direction her quirk had indicated, stunned that he’d even listened to her in the first place. The man definitely struck Inara as the stubborn ‘I don’t need to listen to anyone else’ type, but he’d humored Inara all the same. Maybe there was a little bit of sense in that flaming head of his, after all. Or maybe it was the gold eyes - a lot of people got weird about Inara’s eyes turning gold.

The two rounded the corner and Inara’s quirk finally faded, all of the glitter leaving the air around her. Finally able to make out the details of the world around her, Inara recognized a street she’d explored two days prior. There was a fine cafe only two doors down, where she’d even found a waitress who spoke English. That wasn’t what she was here for, though, she reminded herself.

The semicircle of cheering bodies seemed to be what she was here for. Staying only a few inches behind the burning hero - Inara realized she still didn’t know his name - she managed to get through the crowd with relative ease. It seemed everyone stayed out of the way of this man, though Inara had a feeling that their wariness had little to do with the fire on his costume.

Two people were outright brawling in the street. One of them was wearing a black and white skinsuit, with green accents. Recognizing the curly, matted hair of Tremor, Inara felt her stomach do a backflip. The other person, dodging and dancing in and out of Tremor’s range, was Inara’s best friend in the world. Tremor’s ex-whatever-they’d-been, and his sworn enemy. Inara had seen madness in Tremor’s eyes the last time they’d spoken, and she saw even more of it now. When (Y/N) stumbled, looking for an escape, Tremor squatted to the ground and punched. A few people screamed, several fell over, and Inara grabbed the fiery hero’s arm to keep herself from crashing to the ground as it shook with the force of a small earthquake. Inara watched her best friend fall to the ground, and screamed.

Chapter Text

You’d spent years training with Tremor. Years of him beating ‘never turn your back’ into you. And what had you done? Turned your back, of course.

The ground disappeared beneath your feet, and you heard half a dozen screams. The fight had drawn attention from onlookers - it wasn’t common to see two people fighting without their quirks. Of course, what the onlookers didn’t realize was that Tremor was using his quirk - he just hadn’t had the opportunity to properly demonstrate it yet. That is, until you turned your back and practically begged him to destroy the road.

The ground came up to meet you, knocking the air out of your lungs. You landed sprawled on your back, staring up at Tremor. The maniacal grin on his face spread as he realized he’d won, and you struggled to get your feet beneath you. You weren’t fast enough to dodge his next attack, so you caught his fist in your own, instead.

The world turned white as every bone in your hand and wrist shattered. Expecting the next fist to land in your stomach - or worse, on your face - you closed your eyes and took a deep breath. The attack never came.

The world was exceedingly fuzzy as you opened your eyes, and for a moment you thought the bright light in front of you might be the sun. Maybe you’d died, after all, and this was the ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ everyone always talked about. Blinking repeatedly, however, you were able to wash away the blurriness and make out the torso of a man on fire. Recognizing Endeavor, you managed a small smile.

“Good timing,” you muttered, looking up at him. He glared down at you for just a moment before turning away. Looking in the direction he’d turned to, you saw Tremor struggling to his feet, blood trickling from his nose. As Endeavor stomped away, Inara appeared in front of you, instead. There was panic in her eyes as she stared at your shattered hand.

“I’m so sorry! I thought we were fast enough, but -”

“Inara, I’m alive . I wouldn’t be alive if you weren’t fast enough. Please get back - you know how bad Richard is for bystanders.”

“But-” Inara started again, helping you to your feet. You glared at her out of the corner of your eye as you called on your quirk. Shutting down the pain receptors of your brain was a risky decision, but you couldn’t see through the pain in your right wrist, so you did it anyway.

“Actually,” you muttered, remembering something, “before you go..” Reaching under your best friend’s skirt, you found the knife she kept strapped to her thigh. Tugging it from its holster, you shoved your friend back toward the crowd. “Thanks, Inara. Now keep the crowd back, yeah?”

“Don’t reach up my skirt like that!” She snapped, blushing furiously and tugging the hem of her skirt down further. You grinned and winked before turning back toward the fist fight between Endeavor and Tremor. As you watched Endeavor dodge another punch from your old partner, you wondered why the flaming man was holding back. With a shrug, you ran forward.

Tremor was exceedingly good at close combat, but Endeavor was just slightly better. Adding you to the mix, the crazed ex-hero realized he was outmatched. Scowling, he stumbled backward in an attempt to get away. You ducked under Endeavor’s next swing and leapt into the opening it created, aiming the handle of your knife at the side of Tremor’s head.

Just before you could make contact, a hand appeared out of nowhere and reached out to catch your wrist. Turning to look, you found yourself face-to-face with a small Japanese woman, a smile on her face that sent shivers down your spine. Her eyes shifted from black to bright blue, and before you could react, you found yourself falling. Looking down, you realized you’d been teleported several hundred feet in the air. Her hand on your wrist disappeared, along with the knife you’d been holding, as the ground approached with increasing speed. You heard Inara scream from below as you closed your eyes, trying to think of some way to stop your fall.

An arm appeared around your waist and behind your knees, and you came to a jarring stop as Endeavor caught you, an annoyed scowl on his face. You stared up at him, startled by his sudden appearance. Judging by the heat below you, the man was using flames from his feet to hover in the air. Looking down, you realized you were only a few feet away from smashing into the pavement. Shuddering, you closed your eyes again. Taking a deep breath, you patted Endeavor on the shoulder.

“Thanks again, Endeavor,” you muttered. “You can set me down, now, though.” He dropped your legs first, the arm around your waist tightening as he lowered you to the ground. You slid from his grip a few inches from the road and landed on your feet, looking around in search of Tremor and the mysterious teleporter.

They were nowhere to be seen.

--

Endeavor was more than a little annoyed that Tremor and his new friend had escaped when he looked away, but surprisingly he didn’t outright blame you for their disappearance. He took off immediately to search for the pair, as Inara tried to convince you to check into the nearest hospital. You stayed behind, instead, explaining the fight to the police officers who’d shown up toward the end. Looking through the crowd of bystanders, you were unable to find Mike. You couldn’t decide if that was a good thing or a bad thing - you didn’t want to face your very own stalker, but you did want the boy to get back to America as soon as possible.

The Number 2 hero showed back up as the police were wrapping up the scene, his scowl worse than ever. Inara planted herself between you and the big man as he glared down at the two of you, clearly convinced that he was a threat to your health. After a moment of him glaring silently at your friend, you put a hand on her shoulder and whispered in her ear.

“If he wanted to hurt us, Inara, he would have done it already. Let him be.”

“Tell me about this man,” Endeavor ordered as you stepped out from behind Inara. “Who is he, and why was he attacking you? He had the costume of a hero, but I didn’t recognize him.”

“He was an American hero, a few years ago. He’s wanted in America now, for attacking another hero without cause.” You’d wrapped your broken wrist up in a towel you’d found at a nearby store, and Endeavor glared down at it now.

“Was that hero you?” he asked.

“Yes. I’d rather not discuss the details. Tremor’s quirk allows him to create waves of destructive energy with his fists. If he’d landed a blow on you, you might have died from it.” You offered the big man a small smile as your quirk hilighted a cut on his shoulderblade, half-healed and clearly from a previous fight. “Thanks again for stepping in, Endeavor. I owe you.”

“You should get medical attention,” he said, crossing his arms in front of him. You were starting to see through those glares of his, and beginning to suspect that there might be a decent person behind them. Inara, grumbling from her place just behind you, didn’t seem to notice.

“I’ll need surgery, I suppose,” you admitted, glaring down at your hand for a moment. “Mind if I heal you, though? That cut on your shoulder isn’t anything compared to your saving my life, but it’s a start.” You offered your left hand to the hero, and he glared down at it.

“I’m fine,” he insisted.

“I owe you,” you responded, meeting his stubborn glare with an equally stubborn smile. After another moment of hesitation, he took your offered hand in his own. You closed the distance between the two of you before he could realize what was going on and reached up to put a hand on his flaming cheek. The fire was warm, but - as you’d suspected - harmless. You sent a rush of healing energy throughout the big man’s body before he pulled away, and gave him your best wicked grin as he scowled once more.

“What was that about?” He snapped.

“I need direct physical contact,” you explained, “and you’re wearing gloves.”

--

He almost hadn’t recognized the healing hero from two weeks prior. The brawl in the middle of the street wasn’t really his business until the man in black, white and green used his quirk. Heroes weren’t police officers - Endeavor worked to help regulate the misuse of quirks, not to stop random arguments in the street. Feeling the ground shake beneath him, Endeavor realized that the man had likely been trying to use his quirk the entire time. A hand on his arm made Endeavor look down at the black woman with gold eyes that had approached him minutes before. A look of pure horror was on her face as she watched the fight in front of them, and she let out a scream that made Endeavor wince.

He wasn’t quite fast enough to stop the man from aiming a punch at the healer sprawled on the ground, and Endeavor was forced to watch as his punch was caught in a fist that shattered on impact. Furious at himself for hesitating, the flaming hero aimed a punch at the man’s face before he could kill the prone hero before him.

“Good timing,” Endeavor remembered the hero name Silver from the license he’d inspected before. Glaring down at Silver for a moment, he was surprised to feel a glimmer of happiness in his stomach at the compliment. Giving himself a mental shake, Endeavor turned back toward the madman in the street.

Despite his bloody nose, the man went blow-for-blow with Endeavor. Endeavor paid extra attention to those hands of his, forced to stay mostly defensive as he fought. Flames didn’t seem to bother the other man, and Endeavor saw raw madness in his eyes as he fought. No amount of intimidation would get this man to back down. For some reason, the other man stumbled backward, looking for just a split second to be worried. Someone appeared under Endeavor’s arm as he aimed another punch at the ex-hero, and Endeavor realized that Silver was back in the fight, the blunt end of a knife aimed at their mutual enemy. Before Endeavor could fully process the fact that this hero was still willing to fight despite a completely shattered hand and wrist, someone new appeared.

A small woman with long black hair and an aura of bloodthirst stood between Endeavor and the man he’d been fighting, one hand wrapped around Silver’s wrist. He didn’t have time to react before both Silver and the new woman disappeared. Looking back toward Tremor, he saw the other man’s attention in the sky above him. Hearing another scream from the woman with gold eyes, Endeavor followed his gaze upward.

Falling from an extreme height, Silver stared down toward the ground with an odd look of resignation. The healing hero didn’t appear to be afraid, instead looking faintly annoyed as they hurtled toward the ground, eyes closed. Grimacing, Endeavor focused his flames on his feet and rocketed into the air.

Silver’s good hand was curled against their chest as they looked up at Endeavor, not even the slightest bit of pain in their face. Endeavor had trouble looking away as the hero in his arms looked from his eyes to the ground and back up to him again. A soft pat on his shoulders brought the hero back to reality.

“Thanks again, Endeavor,” Silver muttered. “You can set me down now, though.”

Setting Silver back down, Endeavor looked around to find his quarry gone. The teleporting girl must have taken off with him, he realized with increasing annoyance. Scowling, Endeavor took off once more in search of his newest enemy. After nearly forty-five minutes of searching, he was forced to give up. Returning to the shattered road where the fight had taken place, Endeavor was stunned to find the hero Silver still there, broken wrist wrapped and eyes still glittering silver.

Endeavor had never met someone who was so totally unafraid of him. This Silver, however, was quite clearly unfazed by both his anger and his flames. The cool touch of Silver’s hand on his cheek was enough to keep him from pulling away instantly. For the first time in what felt like years, Endeavor wasn’t burning with the heat of his quirk. Too soon, the cooling wash of Silver’s healing was gone.  Before they went their separate ways, Silver made their friend write down contact information for Endeavor.

"If you're ever in need of healing," Silver said, that tiny smile still in place, "give me a call."

Chapter Text

You were stepping out of the bathroom, half-dressed and still more or less asleep, when Inara rounded the corner and threw something at you. Barely managing to catch it, you realized it was a buzzing phone - your phone, with a call from an unknown number. Showing Inara your middle finger for throwing something at you when you were half asleep, you tapped the green 'answer' button with a finger wrapped in a cast and put the phone to your ear. From down the hall, Inara stuck her tongue out at you.

"Doctor (L/N)," you said, forcing yourself to sound more awake than you were, "what can I do for you?" The phone started to slip from your hand, so you swapped ears to hold it with the uninjured one.

"This is Endeavor," his voice was just as deep and gruff over the phone as it had been in person, and you could almost imagine his scowl as he spoke. "Do you have time to meet for an interview?"

"Uh," you muttered, rubbing at your forehead and trying to process what he was asking. "Do I have time for... An interview for what, exactly?"

"The ex-hero Tremor is still missing. I'm assisting with the investigation, and I need to know more about the man. You knew him quite well, after all."

"Did I." It wasn't a question, really. You hadn't admitted to Endeavor outright that you'd known Tremor as anything other than another American hero, but the man sounded absolutely certain that you knew him better than that. Not that he was wrong.

"Yes," Endeavor grumbled. You could just barely hear papers shuffling in the background as you made your way down the hall toward the kitchen. "As did your friend, Doctor Currier. Do you have her contact information? I need to speak with her, as well."

"She's my roommate," you shook your head at Inara when she gave you a questioning look, "so I can just bring her with me. What kind of questions should we be expecting, Endeavor? I don't intend to discuss anything.. personal. I can give you his personality, what kind of food he likes. Maybe help you track down his hotel or something..."

"I'm aware of the extent of your relationship with him, Doctor (L/N). I've put together a general timeline of his adult life. I need you and Doctor Currier to fill in the details."

"Endeavor," you sat down in one of the chairs at the dining table, trying not to betray your annoyance over the phone, "you don't have the slightest clue of the extent of my relationship with Dick Smalls."

"...His birth certificate lists him as Richard Smalls, not 'Dick'. Did he change his name? I'll have to update the record..." For the first time since you'd met him, Endeavor didn't sound angry. His extreme focus on the case in front of him made him sound somehow... softer... as you spoke to him.

"No, his name is Richard. 'Dick' is a nickname. Uh, okay, Inara and I can meet you in three hours. Would that work for you?"

"Yes, I can be available then. My agency is..." He started to give an address, but you cut him off.

"Wait, wait, I don't have a hand to write any of this down," you switched to English and turned to your roommate, "Inara, get a pen and paper, Endeavor's going to give us an address."

"You don't have a hand...? I didn't think your injury was that bad-"

"Oh, no, it wasn't. I just meant that my hand is in a cast, so I can't write and hold the phone at the same time. Inara has a pen and paper; I'm putting you on speaker."

--

Endeavor's agency building was impressive, even from the outside. It towered above the buildings around it, and you were happy to see that nothing appeared to be on fire. Inara glared up at the building, still annoyed that she'd been dragged into this. Inara hadn't known Tremor nearly as well as you, and she felt that this interview with Endeavor would be a waste of her day off. It didn't matter how many times you reminded her that it was an investigation to find and take out Tremor; Inara insisted that she could be spending her time better elsewhere.

You hadn't really expected the interview to be with Endeavor himself, but he was the only person in the room when you arrived. The room in question was absolutely massive, and largely empty. In the center was a huge, intricate rug beneath a couch, a coffee table, and two recliners. Endeavor's desk, perfectly cleaned and topped with a single lamp, was nearly four feet away from the nearest couch.

The flaming hero led you and Inara to the recliners in front of the coffee table before settling onto the couch himself, legs spread wide so that he could lean forward and use the coffee table like a desk. Glancing at Inara, you saw a mixture of confusion and amusement on her face at the scene. Poking her in the side with your elbow, you glared at her until the half-smirk on her face faded.

His questions were quick, impersonal, and to the point. From the pile on the desk before you, you could tell he'd done his share of research. There were pictures scattered among the papers of Tremor both in and out of his costume. When you recognized the one Inara had taken of you and Tremor on your first patrol, you tried to figure out how to take it without Endeavor noticing. That picture needed to burn - not just because it was a reminder of everything that had gone wrong, but because it had you in your first hero costume. After nearly an hour of Endeavor grilling yourself and Inara about Tremor and his daily habits, he finally seemed satisfied. Standing up, the three of you turned toward the exit. The receptionist who had brought you and Inara to Endeavor's office stood outside, a professional smile on her face.

You shoved your hands in your pockets as you walked, Inara already looking on her phone for a nearby restaurant to get lunch at. Just as you got to the doorway, however, you felt a hot hand on your shoulder. Startled, you turned to see Endeavor frowning down at you. Inara stopped, looking from you to Endeavor and back to you again.

"May I have a private word with you, Doctor?" Endeavor asked, as politely as he seemed able. Inara raised her eyebrows at you, and you gave her a tiny shrug, just as confused as she was by the sudden request.

"Of course," you agreed. "Inara, I'll let you know when I'm leaving."

"I can wait in the lobby," she offered. You thought about it for a moment, glancing at Endeavor again. His hand had left your shoulder almost as quickly as it had appeared, and he stood waiting for you, a wrinkle between his brows.

"No, that's alright," you decided. "Go ahead and look around the area. Let me know if you find anything interesting."

--

You settled into the recliner once more, staring at the design in the carpet for a moment before Endeavor cleared his throat. He was sitting on the couch across from you once more, and you offered him a customer-service smile.

"What do you need, Endeavor?"

"A consultant," he answered, somehow managing to look down on you from across the way. You raised an eyebrow in a silent question. "My quirk can cause damage to my body if I overuse it. I'd like to consult with a doctor about how to minimize the damage when I overreach."

"Oh. Most peoples' quirks harm them if they overreach," you reminded him. "But I can understand a Pro Hero wanting to consult about it. Unfortunately, I don't know anyone here in Japan that specializes in quirks. If you were hoping for a recommendation-"

"I intend to hire you," Endeavor interrupted. You stared at him for a long moment, trying to process what he'd just said.

"I... I don't specialize in quirks, Endeavor. And besides, I'm not really looking for work. I already have a job at U.A."

"I'm aware that you don't generally work with quirks," Endeavor said, pulling a folder from the bottom of the pile of paperwork on the table between you. "And I'm aware of your job at U.A. You'll be teaching my son in the coming school year. But your job at U.A. is only part-time. I would pay you considerably more to work for me."

"I'm not going to quit U.A.," you said, startled.

"I'm not asking you to, Doctor. I would only be consulting with you weekly, or possibly bi-weekly. Your ability to determine what vitamins and minerals a person needs most would greatly benefit me as a professional hero."

"Oh," you managed. "And the fact that I don't generally work with quirks? My specialty is soft-tissue, Endeavor. I work best on lacerations and internal tissue damage, not on anything quirk specific. I can do a fair bit of brain surgery, too, but unless your quirk is damaging your brain..."

"It is. My quirk causes my body to overheat, including my brain. I often show signs of heat exhaustion after a day of work. I believe your quirk would be able to negate some of those symptoms."

"Yes," you agreed, starting to follow his train of thought, "it would. I noticed when I healed you the other day that your core temperature was higher than average. I thought it was just a side-effect of your quirk, but..." You activated your silver, looking directly at Endeavor's chest. The signs of overheating you'd seen before were gone. Leaning back in your chair, you shut your silver off.

"It is a side-effect," Endeavor said gruffly, crossing his arms, "a damaging side-effect."

"So I would be checking on your health weekly, for signs of long-term damage from your quirk. I'd also be tracking your nutritional needs, to maintain your health at its peak. Is there anything else I'd be doing?"

"That's all I could think of," he said, looking thoughtful. You decided you liked this side of Endeavor - he wasn't as gruff as before, and though you weren't being overtly rude, he didn't seem to mind the informality with which you addressed him. "But if you can think of something else...?"

"No, not right now. I'll have to do some research, find out what else I might be able to do to help you with your quirk." You rubbed your nose with your cast, staring at the carpet again and thinking about what Endeavor had proposed.

"I won't ask for your response today," he said. You looked back up at him and smiled slightly.

"Thank you. I should be able to give you an answer in two days, if that isn't too long."

"That's fine." You started to get back up, but he didn't budge. "One more thing, Doctor."

"Yes?" You asked, sitting back down. What else could he want?

"What are you doing to protect yourself until the police and I can find and arrest Richard Smalls?"

"Well," you muttered, blushing slightly. You hadn't really thought about it, to be honest. Inara had brought up that Tremor was still after you while you were waiting for Recovery Girl to finish piecing your hand back together, but you'd been to focused on the surgery to listen. "I suppose I'll change my traffic patterns up so that I'm harder to follow. Try going to a few different grocery stores, maybe take different trains to and from work..."

"You should train to fight again," Endeavor said, opening that folder he'd grabbed earlier. Clipped to the inside of the folder was the picture of you and Tremor in your debut. You winced when you saw yourself - decked out in studded black leather, with a messy haircut and chains wrapped around your arms. Endeavor flipped a few pages back to show a series of photos of you in combat, chains moving fast enough to blur in the photographs.

"I suppose," you agreed, glaring down at one of the photos, "but that means I need to get another one of those chains. Though I'm not going back to the costume."

Chapter Text

Enji Todoroki didn't consider himself to be an impulsive man. He had a short temper, certainly. And, occasionally, he would make a poor decision simply because he was angry. But impulsive? Not in his nature. He considered every possibility, thought of every possible scenario, before making a decision. And he only chose the best. He couldn't earn the role of number 1 hero in Japan by doing any less.

So when he put a hand on Silver's shoulder, he was just as startled as everyone else. Enji hadn't really been planning on hiring Silver as a personal consultant, though the thought had occurred to him. His quirk bothered him sometimes, certainly - he'd married a woman with ice powers for that very reason, actually - but he'd been dealing with the side-effects for years. He'd met with doctors dozens of times, seeking various treatments and meal plans. Eventually, he'd condensed everything the doctors told him into one simple, easy-to-follow diet and exercise plan, and moved on. He could take care of himself. Silver's cooling touch might be convenient, but it really wasn't necessary.

For the fourth time that night, Enji rolled over in bed to check his phone. He knew Silver wasn't going to give an answer to his job offer at 2 in the morning, but he couldn't stop himself from checking. He was losing sleep over this, and there was no justification.

It was noon two days after their meeting at Endeavor's agency when his phone finally rang.

--

You hadn't had a medical bag in three years, and you'd forgotten just how annoying it was to carry. The bag always bounced against your leg in the most annoying way possible, no matter how you adjusted the length of the strap. Grimacing, you adjusted the length anyway and opened the door to Endeavor's agency.

Though Inara had pointed out that the size and luxury of the agency was beyond necessity, you had to admit that it was nice. Walking down a long hall with perfectly polished hardwood floors, you couldn't help but admire the overall beauty of it all. Whoever had designed the interior of this building had good taste. You slowed down as you passed a very expensive-looking vase, admiring the way it had been patched together with gold, and nearly missed your next turn. The receptionist that was escorting you to Endeavor was polite, but somewhat cold. She didn't seem to notice that you weren't keeping up.

The door she opened at the end of the hallway was made of solid oak, stained a dark red. You took a moment to admire the color before stepping through the entryway. Inside was a fully-equipped gym, large enough that you had to search to find Endeavor among the equipment. There were stationary bikes, treadmills, elliptical machines, and some machines you didn't recognize running along one wall. The other side of the room was dedicated to more weight machines than you'd seen in your last visit to Planet Fitness, and Endeavor was at a simple bench-press, probably lifting more than your weight with only a slight sheen of sweat to show for his effort. In the center of the room, taking up the most space, was a massive floor mat; clearly an area designed for sparring. Adjusting your shoulder strap again, you made your way through the maze of equipment.

Stopping a few feet short of Endeavor's bench, you set the bag down and massaged the shoulder where it had been. He wore a pair of black basketball shorts and a white tank-top, grunting quietly as he pressed the bar in short, perfect repetitions. Looking at the amount of weight he was lifting would make you feel inferior, so you chose not to. Instead, you walked around behind him - he was too wrapped up in his lifting to notice you yet - and put your good hand on the bar he was lifting. His eyes widened in surprise at your sudden appearance, but he didn't jump or lose control of the weights.

"My first recommendation," you said with a slight smirk, "is to always have a spotter when you're lifting." Endeavor's brow furrowed in his trademark scowl, which only amused you more.

"Are you supposed to be my spotter, then? You wouldn't be able to do anything with just one hand."

"Sunshine, I wouldn't be able to slow this much weight down if I had both hands." He glowered up at you, getting in four more repetitions before setting the bar down and sitting up. You admired the muscles of his back and shoulders as he wiped his face off with a nearby rag.

"You're early," he finally said, turning to glare at you over his shoulder. You shrugged, shoving your hands into your pockets.

"What can I say? My father was a military man, and in the military, 'on time' is late." His response was a short grunt. You turned toward your brand-new medical bag, opening it and pulling out the clipboard Inara had bought you. Naturally, it was silver. Sometimes, you really hated your friend. "Unless you have objections, Endeavor, I was planning on giving you a full physical today. It'll be easier for me to tell when you're unwell from your quirk if I have a solid picture of your overall health when you haven't used it for a while."

"I went on a patrol this morning," he said, pulling the stopper on a water bottle. You watched his Adam's apple bounce for a moment before giving yourself a mental shake.

"Then I'll have to do a full physical again, when you haven't been patrolling for at least twelve hours."

"It would have to be first thing in the morning, then. Before nine." He finally stood, wiping his face and neck with the towel once more. "I have a table and chairs in the next room."

"I'll send you my U.A. schedule, then," you offered, grabbing your bag and following him. "As long as I don't have work that morning, I don't mind coming out early."

"Good," he grunted, opening the door. The room he'd led you to was spacious and nearly empty, a single table and a few chairs in the middle of it. You had a feeling this was meant to be a conference room. "What do you need me to do?"

"Go ahead and sit down," you said, setting your bag on the table. Rummaging through it, you found your stethoscope and got to work.

"I thought you'd be using your quirk," he said as you put the ear pieces in. You shrugged, taking one of his wrists in your hand.

"I will be, by the end of today's session. But I try not to rely entirely on my quirk when I work. There's no reason to use a bunch of my healing energy gathering information that can be gotten just as easily with tools."

"I gave you a copy of my medical records," he complained as you wrote down your first readings, "you can get all of this information from them."

"I read your records," you said, pulling the file from your bag. "They're very thorough, so thank you for that. But I like to see things for myself."

"You like to waste time, you mean," he growled. You glared at him, dropping the folder back into your bag.

"I didn't realize you were a medical expert," you said drily. His scowl deepened, and you wondered how much longer it would be before his beard caught on fire.

"You've just admitted that my previous records are thorough, yet you insist on going in behind them and taking your own readings. How is that necessary?"

"I've seen medical records twice as thick as yours and half as accurate. There are bad doctors everywhere in the world, and if I blindly trusted every doctor I met, people would die."

"I only hire the best," he grated from between clenched teeth. You crossed your arms in front of you, frowning at him.

"Then why did you hire me?"

"You have the highest recovery rate of any healing-quirk doctor in the United States of America," he snapped. "The only blemish on your record is your father, and you don't show any signs of following in his footsteps - yet - so-"

"Don't bring my father into this," you said flatly. "Besides, I think you got your numbers wrong. My quirk is extremely limited."

"You don't know your own statistics? If you were to work at a hospital full time, you could likely out-heal Recovery Girl." He stood, suddenly extremely close as he towered over you. Your heart skipped a beat when you felt the heat rolling off of him, but the moment passed as he turned away. There was a desk in the corner of the room that you hadn't noticed earlier, and he approached it now.

"Don't flatter me, Endeavor. I wouldn't be able to out heal Recovery Girl if I tried. She can heal wounds I wouldn't dream of touching."

"Comparing your early work as a doctor to your father's," he'd produced the file from your last visit, "you showed considerably more promise than he did. And before he became a drugged-up criminal, your father was the leading trauma surgeon in the United States Navy."

" 'Drugged-up criminal'? Don't insult my father, Endeavor."

"He was given a dishonorable discharge from the US Navy following a guilty verdict on charges of theft, malpractice and drug use. I have the photo of his arrest-" You snatched the photo in question from the big hero's hand and shoved into your pocket, furious.

"I didn't come here to be insulted," your voice was shaking with fury, and you turned back to your medical bag, shoving the clipboard back into it. You were almost out of the door before he spoke again, his voice suddenly far less hostile.

"That was... out of line. I apologize." You stopped in the doorway, counting to ten as you glared at a nearby treadmill.

"My father was a great man, Endeavor," you said quietly, thankful that your voice was no longer shaking. "A great man who made a lot of mistakes. I would appreciate it if you didn't bring him up again."

"...Understood."

Taking another deep breath, you turned back around. Endeavor had set the file down and stood next to the desk, looking faintly apologetic. Putting your bag back on the table, you cleared your throat.

"Well, let's stop wasting time, then."

Chapter Text

You worked quietly, surprised by how obedient Endeavor was now that he understood why you were working with regular tools instead of your quirk. Clearly, he'd had a few physicals in his time; it only took a touch or a short gesture for him to understand what you needed him to do, and he responded immediately. When you pressed your stethoscope to his back, he took a deep breath. As you rolled his wrist over to expose the inside of his elbow, he straightened the arm out and flexed so that you could find a vein to prick a little bit easier. You used the tiniest bit of your quirk to find the vein, drawing three vials of blood before closing the puncture wound up with a touch.

The only time he hesitated was when you pulled out your tongue depressor and told him to make an 'aah' sound. He opened his mouth and let you press the wood to his tongue, but he didn't make a sound. After a moment, you snapped your eyes up to meet his.

"I need to see the muscles of your throat working," you said firmly. His eyebrow twitched, and he finally made the noise, the tiniest blush appearing on his cheeks. When you finally set your clipboard down and turned back to him, the big man looked almost docile in his chair, the usual scowl replaced with a pensive frown.

"Do you have somewhere to test that blood," he asked, "or will your quirk allow you to study it?"

"Recovery Girl has agreed to let me use the small laboratory she has at the school, outside of school hours. I'm just running basic tests, but if there's a test you don't want me to run, just let me know."

"What test wouldn't I want you to run?" He asked as you straightened the contents of your bag. Zipping the thing shut, you turned toward him with a shrug.

"No idea. Everyone is entitled to their secrets, Endeavor. I'm not going to sell the results of your tests or anything, but you have a right to refuse any treatment or test I offer you."

"...I see," he muttered, a tiny wrinkle appearing between his eyebrows. For just a moment, the big man actually looked... cute.

"Well, I'm finished with the traditional testing," you said, taking off the gloves you'd put on before drawing his blood. Those you put in a tiny plastic bag marked as hazardous waste - the same bag you'd put the expended needle. "Now is when I'll use my quirk to evaluate you. I want to go over a couple of things, first, though." You pulled a nearby chair up, sitting down just within arm length of Endeavor. You could feel the heat rolling off of him, reminding you that his core temperature had been just on the edge of what a normal person would consider a fever. Given that he was showing no other signs of illness, you had to assume that the higher body temperature was at least mostly normal for him. He leaned back in his chair, crossing his arms and looking down at you with turquoise eyes.

"What do I need to know?"

"In a normal healing, I only deal with what's injured. My quirk sort of... carries... my mind to the injury, where I can assess it up close and deal with each individual problem as they present themselves. The process isn't particularly invasive, and it's entirely... uh, I don't know the word in Japanese." Impersonal, is what you were going for, but you couldn't translate it just now. "It's not as... uh..."

"I think I understand what you're getting at," he grumbled, somewhat annoyed, "move on."

"Mmm. Okay. Anyway, when I do a full inspection - like I'm going to do shortly - I'll be looking over every inch of you, from the inside out. I usually start with the brain and check every organ and bone all the way down to your toenails. It's slow, and very... Well, I've already admitted I don't know the right Japanese terms for it." You didn't even really know the right English word for the sensation, though you weren't going to admit that. You had some pride as a doctor, after all.

"I imagine the sensation is... strange," he managed, the wrinkle between his eyebrows deepening. You wished he'd stop being so distractingly attractive. It made translating your thoughts into Japanese considerably harder - you weren't usually this bad at articulating.

"Yes, I've been told it feels somewhat invasive. Too personal. if you get my meaning." You scratched the side of your nose. "What I'm trying to get at here, is that I understand if it makes you feel uncomfortable. I don't think I would want someone's mind rooting around in my internal organs, even if it were a doctor doing it."

"Won't know until you get on with it," he grunted. You glared at him for a moment.

"Consent is important, Endeavor," you said shortly, "and I won't be able to hear you if you tell me to stop. When I'm working directly with my quirk like this, I don't see, feel or hear anything that's going on around me. That's part of why I failed as a pro hero - when I stopped to heal in a fight, I left myself completely exposed to the enemy. I have a few scars to prove that, actually."

"That is a serious weakness," he agreed, looking thoughtful. "But if you're able to manipulate the bodies of anyone you make physical contact with..."

"I'm a healer, not a manipulator," you were scratching at the cast on your right hand, trying to keep the conversation on track.

"But your quirk could very easily be formidable in a fight," Endeavor insisted, leaning forward. You leaned back in your chair, trying to keep a respectable distance from him.

"Yes," you agreed quietly, glaring down at your injured hand, "I can deal a good bit of damage. But I chose to use my quirk for healing, Endeavor, not for fighting."

"You were seriously injured," his hand appeared, taking your uninjured fist away from the cast and setting it on your knee, "because you were unwilling to use your quirk to its full potential."

"My quirk's full potential," you said firmly, "is best used to help, and not to hurt. The body wants to heal, Endeavor, it doesn't want to destroy itself. I use twice as much energy hurting others with my quirk as I use healing them. If I were to use my quirk in a fight, I would waste all of it in battle and have none left for the aftermath. Some sacrifices are worth making."

"You're short-changing your quirk-" he started, but you held a hand up to hush him.

"No, I'm not. We're getting off-subject here, Endeavor. I was telling you how to keep my quirk from making you uncomfortable." He just grunted, leaning back again and crossing his arms once more. "I won't be able to see or hear you if you're uncomfortable, so you'll have to stop me yourself if you feel that my quirk is crossing a line."

"How would I do that?" He asked, sounding marginally polite.

"Break contact," you said with a shrug. "Simple enough. If I lose contact, my quirk pulls me back into my own head and you're good to go."

"Would that hurt you in some way?" He asked.

"It's... uncomfortable. I'll have a headache afterward, certainly... But my quirk gives me more headaches than toddlers give their mothers, so I'm used to it. Don't worry about hurting me, Endeavor. I'm more concerned with your comfort than my own in this case."

"Very well," he said after only a moment of thought. You shifted in your seat, aware that your legs would fall asleep while you worked if you sat wrong. Once you'd settled into a more comfortable position, you reached up with both hands and placed your fingertips on either side of the flaming hero's forehead. Settling your breaths into a deep, even pattern, you closed your eyes and called on your quirk, slipping into the brain under your fingers.

--

Silver had been right about the sensation of their quirk feeling invasive. Enji stiffened when he first felt the cool touch of silver in his own brain, startled by how slowly it moved through him. Silver's quirk felt like stepping into a cool bathtub, though the feeling started at the fingertips pressed to Enji's skull instead of his feet. He could feel each shift of the energy as it moved through his brain and down to his nose and mouth, making him shudder as it ran gently over the back of his neck.

In front of him, Silver's eyes were closed, their breaths coming in a quiet, even pattern that Enji found himself mimicking instinctively. The embers of anger he always felt burning in his chest seemed to die out for just a moment as the coolness reached his shoulders. A tension he hadn't noticed before relaxed, and he wondered if it was Silver telling his muscles to relax, or if all it took was the cool presence of their quirk. Enji watched the spread of Silver's quirk over their closed eyelids, entranced by the subtle way it glittered in the light of the room. His eyes wandered up, taking in the knit brows of a concentrated face. There were shadows of wrinkles there even when Silver wasn't frowning, signs that the little wrinkle between Silver's brows was there more often than it wasn't. Silver had a widow's peak, barely visible through bangs that looked like they fell wherever they wanted. Silver didn't appear to be the type to worry about appearances, but Enji realized they'd been blessed with enough good looks that it didn't really matter.

As the cool touch of Silver's mind reached his upper chest, Enji turned his attention elsewhere. Silver's jaw was clenched slightly, and Enji could just barely see their heartbeat in the vein of Silver's neck. He watched the beat for a moment, feeling Silver's touch on his own heart as he counted their heartbeats. Through the cloth of Silver's button-up shirt, Enji could just barely make out tension in their shoulders. Silver's outward appearance was absolutely calm and relaxed, but the longer Enji looked, the more tense they seemed to be. Realizing he was staring, Enji looked away.

He found Silver's arm, instead. It was impossible to look anywhere but forward with Silver's fingers on either side of his temple. Silver wore long sleeves in a pale purple that worked both professionally and fashionably, drawing a bit of color out of their skin despite the overall paleness of it. Silver definitely seemed like the type to stay indoors most of the time, Enji decided. And here he was, looking at the skin of their neck again. It looked soft, and for a wild moment Enji wanted to touch it to find out. Resisting the urge - this was his doctor, not his lover - Enji closed his eyes.

The cool sensation moved on to his stomach, and Enji shifted in his seat, uncomfortable with the sudden proximity of Silver's quirk to his pants. He hadn't really thought about this possibility, he realized. This was about to become very awkward, very fast. He closed his eyes and gritted his teeth, trying to think of anything other than the cool touch of Silver's quirk as it approached his groin.

How Enji managed to sit through Silver's full inspection without breaking contact was something of a mystery. He stared down at Silver as they hunched over their clipboard, scribbling notes in English characters. They didn't seem to notice the tension, or even the slight heat Enji felt in his cheeks as he watched them work.

"What language is that?" He asked when he realized he couldn't understand what Silver was writing down.

"English short-hand," SIlver muttered, not looking up. "I'll rewrite everything in Japanese when I get home and bring a copy with me to our next meeting." Finally, they put the pen in its little holder at the top of the clipboard, meeting Enji's eyes with their own. "That's assuming you still want another meeting."

"Why wouldn't I?" He asked shortly, furious that he still felt a blush on his cheeks. Silver shrugged.

"I've had a few patients decide not to keep coming to me after one of my examinations," Silver admitted.

"Nonsense," Enji grumbled, forcing himself to look away from those (e/c) eyes. "I didn't hire you just to send you away after the first session."

"Alright, then," Silver said cooly, standing up and unzipping their bag. "I'll be back next week, same time. Do you have any questions before I go?"

"No," Enji said shortly, still glaring at the table.

"Call if you think of anything, or if you're injured," Silver said, bowing slightly. Enji stood and returned the bow. "Have a good day, Endeavor."

Enji, his blasphemous mind tried to correct. He bit his tongue, glaring at the floor.

Chapter Text

"He's so. Damn... hot." You mumbled, head in your hands.

"Is that a pun?" Inara drawled, poking you in the side. You took your head out of your hands to glare at her.

"Yes. It's also the truth. When was the last time you looked at his ass? It's hotter than that stupid beard he wears."

"Does he do that on purpose? Or is it... is it part of his quirk?" She asked, leaning in closer. You could smell tequila on her breath, and her eyes were slightly unfocused.

"I don't know! And how am I supposed to ask, anyway?" You snapped, putting your head back into your hands in despair.

"Hey, Endeavor," Inara said in her best -and most insulting- impression of your voice, "nice ass. Also, do you set your hair on fire or does your fire set your hair?"

"That didn't translate well, Hun," Kayama said from her seat across from your friend. She wasn’t nearly as drunk as Inara, but her cheeks were reddened all the same.

"Shut up. I'm drunk." Inara mumbled, pointing in the woman’s general direction.

"We all noticed," Aizawa said drily before taking another sip of the sake he’d ordered earlier.

“Why are you so drunk but Silver is barely dizzy?” Yamada was sitting next to Aizawa, and he reached across his boyfriend to poke you in the arm. You looked up through bleary eyes, wondering what he was talking about.

“This is Silver drunk. This is. Dude, Silver never talks about boys.” Inara slurred, leaning against you now. She couldn’t even sit up in her chair, you realized. Maybe that last shot had been a bad idea, after all.

“He’s not a boy. He’s a man. Wait, no he has the personality of a teenager that thinks everything is supposed to go his way. Hmm.” Your hand was squished into your cheek now, and you stared off in a random direction, eyes unfocused as you remembered Endeavor’s perfectly sculpted shoulders. What an asshole.

“A hormonal teenage boy trapped in the body of a grown-ass man.” Inara offered, giggling.

“Yeah. That sounds right. You seen his biceps? He could bench press me.” You let out a sigh, imagining it.

“You want him to bench press you?” Inara asked, giggling louder now.

“....You don’t?” You asked, genuinely surprised.

“I want Nemuri to bench press me.” Inara turned her brown eyes to the woman across from her, who grinned and winked, the blush on her cheeks deepening. Inara wiggled her eyebrows and you groaned.

“You’re a pervert.” You said, shoving Inara’s side. She slid out of the bar chair, somehow managing to stay on her feet.

“You have no idea.” Inara drawled, climbing back into her chair and draping herself against your side once more.

“I don’t think I could bench press you, my dear. But I can think of some other things we could do…” Kayama’s wicked grin spread, and you felt yourself blushing at her implication. Inara only giggled.

“I’m in. I’m. Wait, no, I just met you.” Inara’s eyebrows screwed up in a frown as she looked at the other woman.

“Is that really an issue?” Kayama drawled, leaning forward. Inara was blushing so hard that you could feel the heat against your skin.

“You know who else is really hot?” Yamada asked, suddenly perking up. He was somewhere between Inara’s level of drunk and Kayama’s.

“...All Might?” You offered, remembering his muscles from the news you’d been watching last night. What was in the water in this country that all of its heroes were so damn buff?

“Well, yes. That’s. That’s a given.” Yamada admitted, blushing slightly.

“But not who you were going for?” Inara asked, leaning around you to get a better look at the voice hero.

“No. Look. Look, he’s right here. Look at this masterpiece!” Yamada was pointing at Aizawa with both hands, his entire face turning red and his green eyes glittering behind sunglasses that had slid halfway down his nose.

“Shut up, Hizashi,” Aizawa muttered, but you could see a tiny smile on his lips.

“Never! You’re the hottest man in the room. You’re a hunk. You’re-” Yamada tried to keep going, but Aizawa cut him off.

“You’ve had enough. Time to go.” Aizawa said shortly, standing and dragging the other man with him.

“Yes, boys, go back to your apartment. And do some nasty things together.” Nemuri cooed, looking at them as they left.

“Nasty things. I’m up for nasty things.” Inara mumbled, watching the boys go. You could tell by the direction of her eyes that she was watching their asses as they walked.

“Inara, please,” you muttered, embarrassed for her.

“You’re up for nasty things, too, you’re just too shy to admit it. Nasty things with fire-boy. Matchsticks. Flaming Hot Dorito. Firefarts-”

“I’m cutting you off,” you said, blushing and taking Inara’s last shot. You knocked it back, hoping Kayama would attribute your deep blush to the alcohol. It didn’t seem to work, based on the look on her face.

“Hey! Don’t drink my shots!” Inara protested.

“You’re too drunk!” You said firmly, trying to pull her to her feet.

“You’re not drunk enough!” Inara insisted, looking around for the waitress.

“You shouldn’t try to keep up with me!” You snapped, pulling her arm down before she could wave the waitress over.

“You’ve had nearly twice as much as everyone else here! You should be dead!” Kayama looked genuinely concerned, and you gave her a small smile - mostly happy that the subject was no longer Endeavor.

“My quirk metabolizes alcohol faster than most-”

“Silver cheats. Silver is a cheater and you should never challenge a cheater to a drinking match.” Inara was hard to understand, her Japanese heavily accented even before she’d added alcohol to the mix.

“Then why did you challenge me?”

“To get you drunk! So you would talk about Endeavor! You’ve been tight-lipped since that stupid interview! You don’t even make fun of him when he’s on TV any more! And you’ve met him, like, twice!” Inara was talking too loudly, but there was nothing you could say or do to make her quiet down. You glared at her.

“He’s fun to look at, sure! But when he talks. Inara, I wanna slap him in the face when that man talks.” You needed your friend to understand that you wanted nothing more than to look at the man. He was way too short-tempered for your taste.

“That still sounds like lust to me…” Kayama purred. You felt your face heat up even more.

“It’s- it’s not- Inara, we’re done. Let’s go.”

“I wanna go home with Nemuri…” Inara whined. You stopped, looking from your friend to the other woman.

“I. Oh. Uh, okay. I’ll just-”

“No, Honey, not tonight. You’re too drunk to make that decision.” Kayama stood to kiss Inara on the forehead. “Go home with Silver now.”

--

You woke up with a hangover the next morning, but Inara’s was considerably worse. She was sprawled out on the couch, groaning and glaring at a bottle of aspirin as if doing so would make it work faster. You made breakfast while she continued to whine from the living room, begging you to heal her hangover. You refused - hangovers, in your opinion, were justified punishment for the decision to drink too much.

You were halfway to work when your phone buzzed: a message from Power Loader about the weapons you’d asked him to recreate for you. You’d asked for another set of chains, like what you’d used to fight during your time as a professional hero in America. Though you weren’t overjoyed to be returning to the world of violence, you knew it was necessary. Tremor was out to find you, and he had company this time around.

The school year was nearing its end, and you spent most of the day helping Cementoss and Ectoplasm setting up the arenas where the practical exam would take place. By the time you were able to get to Power Loader, normal class hours were over and the students were filing out of the school.

Your new chains were about the same length as the previous ones, though the links were smaller and the metal wasn’t one you recognized immediately. As you lifted the chains in your hands, testing the weight, you had to admit that you were impressed; though Maijima hadn’t been given your old chains as a reference - only a picture - he’d managed to create a new version that weighed almost exactly the same as the old one. There were weights at each end of the fifteen feet of chain, shaped like handles and etched with a simple design to give them friction in your hands.

You spent another hour at the school, using one of the training arenas to see how out of practice you were. Thankfully, the use of your chains seemed to be like riding a bike: you were lost for the first few swings, but it came back to you naturally after a little while. Your arms were sore when you finished, but you knew you’d be able to get back to full strength with just a bit more practice. Smiling, you wrapped the chains around your waist like a belt and left the school grounds for home.

Chapter Text

Endeavor was late. His receptionist told you that he was caught up in a battle of some sort, and asked you to wait for him to return in case he needed healing when he got back. You agreed, wandering through the halls of his massive agency until you were able to track down the exercise room from before. You set your medical bag down on the bench he’d been using at the beginning of your first session and looked around, wondering what to do while you waited.

You considered doing some lifting of your own, but decided against it; it really was best to have a spotter of some sort while lifting, and it would be embarrassing for Endeavor to return and find you buried under a pile of weights. You weren’t sure what would be more embarrassing about that: the idea that you would drop them on yourself, or how little weight you would be lifting compared to what he usually lifted.

You wandered through the exercise equipment for a few minutes before opening the door to his conference room. The chairs were exactly as you’d left them during your last visit: apparently, this room wasn’t used often. The desk in the corner of the room had a folder sitting on it, and you suddenly remembered the argument from your last visit. Approaching the folder, you saw your name written in Kanji at the top. Curious, you flipped it open.

 

HERO NAME: Silver
REAL NAME: (F/N) (L/N), PhD
DOB: - -XXXX
HERO STATUS: Inactive
QUIRK: Healing Silver
QUIRK SYNOPSIS:  With physical contact, Silver can use their personal energy to alter the physical body of whomever they touch. Silver uses this power to heal.
BLOOD TYPE: A-
HEIGHT: 5’8”
PARTICULAR TRAITS; APPEARANCE: Wears semi-formal clothes in most occasions, such as button-up shirts and slacks. The costume worn during their time as a professional hero was black leather and dark jeans, with chains wrapped around both arms. The chains worked both as a combat and a capture weapon.
PARTICULAR TRAITS; PERSONALITY: Tends to be quiet and keep to themselves. Silver isn’t known for acting out publicly but several heroes interviewed admitted that they have a short temper and little tolerance for inappropriate behavior. Not one of the heroes interviewed about Silver was able to give any personal details on the hero.

Power: 2/5
Speed: 2/5
Technique: 4/5
Intelligence: 5/5
Cooperativeness: 4/5

 

Power: 2 of 5? That seemed a bit harsh. And here you were, thinking Endeavor thought highly of your quirk. Flipping to the next page, you scowled. It was the picture of your debut: your all-leather, biker-style jacket and dark jeans, chains wrapped around your arms. Your hair stuck up in every direction, and the smile on your face was almost maniacal. You’d practiced that smile for months before your debut, hoping to scare people off before they could see that your quirk had no combat capabilities. Flipping the page again, your scowl deepened. It was a two-page synopsis of your life, gathered - presumably - from various public records and conversations with the various American heroes you’d worked with. Some of the lines were highlighted in yellow, as if Endeavor had been taking notes.

The first sign of Silver’s quirk was during a schoolyard fight. The other student’s personal energy was drained until they were hospitalized. Silver’s father was able to return all of the other student’s energy.

You’d always hoped that would be magically erased from public records. Naturally, it wasn’t. There was even a newspaper clip of it, which made you cringe. Rummaging in the desk’s top drawer, you found a pencil. That little brat deserved it, too, for stealing Suzie’s pen. You wrote in English, just to annoy Endeavor. If he was going to take notes on your whole life, you were going to make sure he knew you knew about it.

Silver graduated from medical school as valedictorian, with four (known) job offers from various prestigious hospitals. None of the job offers were accepted, and Silver chose to work out of a local emergency clinic instead.

The hospitals wanted my quirk, not my skill. The clinic wanted both.

A building collapse caused during the debut of a new American hero named Tremor caused Silver to be trapped beneath the rummage for approximately six hours. Tremor dug Silver out, which was the beginning of their relationship.

You had nothing to add to that. Remembering that day, you grunted in annoyance.

The American hero accreditation program is not very different from the Japanese program. Silver graduated two years after meeting Tremor, with full marks on paper and a passable grade on the practical exam.

I didn’t become a hero to fight, after all. You flipped the page over, finding a detailed listing of your ‘statistics’ from your time as a hero. Typed at the bottom of the page was a ranking you didn’t know heroes had. Or possibly, a ranking reserved only for healing-type heroes.

Recovery Rate: 96%

Written below it in a penmanship that looked too elegant to be Endeavor’s was the name of U.A.’s school nurse, and the number 94. You had to assume that it was her own ‘recovery rate’. If you were the proud type, you imagined that those numbers would have inflated your ego a little bit. As it was, you just scowled at them. Reducing the lives of those you and Recovery Girl had saved or failed to save to a string of numbers felt like an insult.

The fun of reading through your file was officially gone, so you flipped the folder shut and stalked back out into the exercise room. What was taking Endeavor so long, anyway?

Scowling around the room, you spotted the giant cushioned mat between rows of exercise equipment. Pulling the chain from around your waist and putting your shoes on the floor next to your medical bag, you made your way out onto the mat. Might as well work off some of this steam.

--

When the receptionist told Enji that SIlver was still waiting for him, he turned from the door that would take him to a shower and went instead toward the training room. It was polite of Silver to wait, but he would have preferred to take a shower and relax for a few minutes. The fight hadn’t been particularly painful, and he wasn’t injured, but it had lasted far longer than necessary. He was exhausted, and very much overheated.

He opened the door to the training room to find Silver, in a light grey button-up shirt and black slacks, standing in the middle of the practice mat. A single, long chain was stretched between both of Silver’s hands, the ends circling at an impressive speed. Silver’s right hand was wrapped in bandages, and the chain swinging from it didn’t move quite as fast as the one swinging on the left. As Enji watched, Silver shifted one arm and brought the weighted end of the chain in their left hand slamming down onto the mat with a resounding whack . Silver’s face and neck were glistening with a thin layer of sweat, and Enji could see them taking heavy, even breaths in through their nose and out their mouth. He watched as Silver made three more powerful swings of the chain, hitting imaginary targets with stunning force. Curious about their aim, Enji lifted a hand and tossed a fist-sized ball of flame over Silver’s left shoulder.

The weight at the end of Silver’s chain sailed through the puff of flame only an instant after they saw it, so Enji threw another one. Silver didn’t look his way, but continued to strike his fireballs with impressive speed and accuracy, using only their left hand to fight. Enji threw fireball after fireball, varying speed and angle as he went, watching muscles move beneath the thin cloth of Silver’s shirt. The cloth began sticking to Silver’s chest and back, drawing more attention to each muscle as it moved. Still behind Silver, where they couldn’t see his eyes wandering, Enji drank up the curves of their body. His fingers suddenly had the itching urge to run along the curves and dips, to explore every inch of skin.

Finally, Silver let the chains spin to a stop, turning as they gathered the links up and tied them around their waist as they approached Endeavor. His eyes lingered on the shimmer of sweat along their collarbone: the top button of Silver’s shirt had come undone, revealing a slight flush on their chest.

“Thanks for the practice, Endeavor,” Silver said cheerfully, slightly breathless, as they came to a stop a foot short of him. He could just make out the scent of apples beneath the sweat. Silver met Enji’s eyes, and he realized that their quirk was activated. The silver glint caught him off guard, and he found himself remembering the cool sensation of their quirk in his chest. Running down to his stomach - icy coolness sinking below his waistband. “You look like you’re overheated.” You could say that, he thought.

They reached up and put a hand on Enji’s cheek, and coolness flooded him from head to toe. He didn’t think about what he was doing as he slid a hand around Silver’s waist.

--

Endeavor was definitely overheated, you decided as you slipped into the silver of your quirk. He didn’t appear to have any injuries other than a couple of minor bruises, but you healed those anyway. Pulling out of your silver, you were startled to find a hand on your waist and Endeavor’s eyes locked onto yours. There was a heat in those turquoise eyes that had nothing to do with his quirk. The hand on your waist tightened, pulling you closer. Before you could pull away or say something, Endeavor’s lips were on yours.

You react without thinking about it, kissing him back almost instantly, your hand on his cheek sliding back to wrap around the base of his neck. He pulls you ever closer as the fingers of your right hand, wrapped in bandages but no longer in a brace, trace the muscle of his upper arm.

His heat is wholly different now: no longer an oppressive burn, but instead a lingering warmth that radiates from everywhere you touch. His teeth tease your bottom lip, a hand untucking your shirt and slipping underneath. When you gasp at the hot fingers on your lower back, he responds by slipping his tongue into your mouth, running it over your teeth. Your grip on the back of his neck tightens and you deepen the kiss, slipping your tongue into his mouth, as well. His fingers follow the curve of your back as yours slide down to trace the bone of his hip.

It isn’t until his thumb traces the scar on your rib cage that you come back to your senses and break the kiss, turning your head away. Instead of stopping or pulling away, Endeavor runs his tongue down the side of your neck, leaving goosebumps everywhere he touches. You gasp lightly when he presses his lips to the side of your neck. You pull your hand away from the back of his neck as he begins to suck on the skin of yours, and push gently on his shoulder. Still, he doesn’t stop. The hand under your shirt traces your scar toward your sternum and you gasp again, this time beginning to panic.

He finally stops when you put a hand on his forearm, pushing it back down and out from beneath your shirt. You’re both panting slightly as he brings those burning eyes up to meet yours.

“I’m not... I can’t. Not--” you can’t find the right words, your mind lost somewhere between the feeling of his skin against yours and the memories attached to the scar on your rib cage. Your heart is racing, but you can’t tell if it’s from the excitement of Endeavor’s kiss or from fear of the memories threatening to surface. This was exactly how your first kiss with Tremor had been, and now he was all you could think about. The world suddenly seemed to be crashing down around your ears.

Endeavor took a step back, glaring down at you. There’s a question in his eyes that you’re afraid to answer: Don’t you want this?

Yes . You absolutely wanted this, whatever it may lead to. But you couldn’t stop thinking about Tremor. Richard Smalls - ruining your life one day at a time. You stared at the ground, unable to bring yourself to say what was wrong. After a long moment, the hands on your hips fell and Endeavor turned away with a huff of annoyance.

“The time scheduled for today’s session has already passed. I apologize for keeping you waiting.” There was anger in his voice, but not the kind of anger you were used to hearing. It took you a moment to realize that the anger was hiding hurt behind it.

Disappointment .

Still unable to explain yourself, you bowed to Endeavor and turned away to shove your shoes back on your feet. As you closed the door behind you, you glanced back to see Endeavor attaching weights to his lifting bar, a scowl on his face.

 

Chapter Text

Enji sat down at the desk in his conference room with a sigh. As he opened the folder in front of him, a pencil rolled out. Frowning, he flipped through the first several pages, looking for signs of tampering. The building's cleaners knew better than to touch anything in the private conference room, particularly if it was on his desk. When he saw neat, tiny English words, he realized what had happened.

That little brat deserved it, too, for stealing Suzie’s pen.

He could hear Silver's voice as he read the words.

The hospitals wanted my quirk, not my skill. The clinic wanted both.

Exactly the kind of comment he would expect from a healer as skilled as Silver had proven to be.

I didn’t become a hero to fight, after all.

Enji stared at that comment for a long time. Silver might not have started as a fighter, but he'd just seen a clear demonstration of their skill. Whether Silver wanted to fight or not, they were more than capable. Any concern Enji might have had about leaving Silver to their own devices with Tremor on the loose had disappeared when he saw the brutal accuracy of that chain. Flipping through the rest of Silver's timeline, Enji found no more comments. Pausing on one of his highlighted lines, Enji ran a hand down his face.

Tremor confirmed his relationship with Silver during an interview with Fox News, describing a practice session that had dissolved into a passionate affair. Silver refused to comment on the matter.

Enji groaned, putting his face in his hands. He'd just repeated the beginning of Silver's relationship with Tremor - and the scar he'd felt under Silver's shirt... Enji flipped to the back of the packet, turning to a newspaper clipping from six years before.

Professional hero Silver is in critical condition after a violent confrontation with pro-hero Tremor. Tremor is wanted by the police for three counts of murder. He is considered extremely dangerous and should not be approached by civilians.

A phone on the corner of the desk rang. Grimacing, Enji clicked the speaker button.

"What is it?"

"Phone call for you, Sir, from a Doctor Currier. She claims it's an emergency."

"Send her through."

--

"(F/N)."

"Dick," you answered coldly, "here to turn yourself in?"

"Turn myself in? For what? I'm a professional hero, Silver. I'm here to capture a villain." He took a step forward, and you took a step back.

"You're the only villain I see around here," you said as you reached for the chain around your waist. Too bad you were still sore from your practice earlier. And distracted by that kiss - he never would have gotten this close normally.

"Don't play stupid," he snapped, "you let all those people die. You're the worst kind of villain there is."

"Whatever you say, Dick," you drawled, shifting into a fighting stance.

"I've told you not to call me that."

"But it suits you in more ways than one," your chain was spinning now, building momentum. Your right wrist groaned in protest, still not fully healed from the last time you'd argued with this particular madman.

"Tish," he said, looking at something over your shoulder. Shit. You'd completely forgotten the girl who could teleport-

The world shifted to black for just an instant, and when the light returned you were face-to-face with a white wall. Your chain crashed into the wall, ricocheting wildly. The hand on your shoulder disappeared as the woman who'd snuck up on you tried to dodge the chain. Years of working with the weapon told you which direction it would spin off in, so you didn't bother to dodge. Instead, you turned, hoping to put the wall between yourself and the teleporter Tish.

She was several feet away now, an arm around Tremor's waist. He'd cleaned up: his uniform was cleaned and pressed, the scruff on his chin gone in a clean shave. There were still shadows under his eyes, but he'd gone back to his normal haircut. He glared at you from across the room, seeming to consider his options.

"No flaming ass to save you today," he growled, looking immensely pleased with himself.

"Not sure I want him to save me right now, anyway," you admitted. You still didn't know how to explain yourself to Endeavor, though facing Tremor and his new girlfriend didn't seem like a much better option.

"I'm going to kill you," Tremor's voice was venomous, and you felt a chill run down your back at the emptiness in his eyes. This man was more than cracked - he was completely insane now, so lost to his own hatred to see how far he'd fallen.

"You're welcome to try," you bluffed, swinging your chain once more.

"You're injured. You might as well just give up. We'll make it quick, if you do," the girl's voice was low and husky, her eyes half-lidded. The lust in her eyes wasn't for Tremor's body, you knew. This was an entirely different kind of madness. A much more frightening kind - you decided she needed to be taken out first, and shifted your attention accordingly. Naturally, Tremor took the opportunity at once, dropping into a squat and planting a hand on the floor.

Before the floor could collapse entirely, you threw all of your weight into your chain, aiming at the madwoman next to Tremor. Her eyes flashed blue, and as you fell to the floor below you knew she'd teleported at the last second.

You stood to find Tremor's fingers inches away from your face. Ducking to the right, your new view was Tish's low-cut shirt, the glint of a knife appearing in the corner of your vision. Scowling, you dropped to your knees and rolled left, barely dodging a punch in the thigh from Tremor. Jumping to your feet, you got your chain spinning again - just in time for a sharp pain in your shoulder. Turning the trajectory of your chain, you heard a thwap as it made contact with Tish - who groaned and reappeared directly in front of you, knife dripping blood. Tremor was ranting again, telling you how he felt about your work in the states. You ignored him, far more concerned with the psycho in front of you. Her eyes glittered blue, and you brought your chains to swing around your body, gaining momentum as they wrapped around your waist. Another whack, a yelp from the woman, and Tremor charged, drool on his chin. You rolled again, detangling the chains from your waist as you went.

As you got back to your feet, fingers wrapped around your chin from behind, yanking your head back. You felt the cold press of a blade against your neck and your heart skipped a beat. Dissolving your mind into your quirk, you felt the heat of your blood on your clothes as Tish slit your throat.

--

"Three blocks east, two floors up in an abandoned warehouse."

"Yes, that's all correct. You're pretty good at this, you know," though Doctor Currier had remained curt at best, Enji could tell she was genuinely impressed by the detail he'd drawn out of her quirk.

"I spent some time studying the details of your quirk for the investigation."

"That's a little bit creepy, big guy." Currier sounded amused more than disturbed, but Enji took note, anyway. He was a professional hero - being creepy would be bad for his reputation.

"You say you're not certain who I'm rescuing?" He looked down at his notes, reading them over for the third time and trying to figure out what else he could possibly ask.

"Yeah, they're flickering in and out of reality. I don't really know what that means, since it doesn't happen often. Last time someone stopped existing in my quirk, they'd died. So, you know. Hurry it up, Flameo."

"...Try to be professional, Doctor."

"Never, Endeavor. Toodles." Currier's line went dead a moment later.

"...I don't understand these people," Enji muttered, standing up. And here he'd thought his night was finally over. As he raced out of the building, turning east, he tried not to think about Silver.

At first, Enji thought the walls and floor of the building had been painted red. He charged directly at the man he recognized as Tremor, aiming a flaming fist directly at the man's face. Tremor dodged him with surprising speed, but slipped in the puddle on the ground. That was when Enji realized what the red was.

Silver lay in a pool of blood, the woman from the last fight standing over her with a bloodstained knife in hand. The grin on the woman's face was absolutely vicious, her excitement so plain it made Enji's skin crawl. Enji stomped on Tremor's leg as he glared at the woman, deaf to the other man's scream as the leg broke. The woman's eyes flashed blue, and before Enji could react, he felt a sharp pain in his bicep.

Enji reached across himself, trying to catch the vile woman before she could teleport again. He wasn't quite fast enough, feeling the cloth of her shirt slip through his fingers. Growling in annoyance, Enji set himself on fire. Below him, he could see Tremor crawling through the puddle of blood toward Silver, broken leg dragging behind him. As he reached for the unconscious form, the teleporting girl appeared next to him, pulling his arm around her shoulders. Enji stomped forward, building balls of fire in each hand. He couldn't let Tremor get away, and the girl still needed to answer for the blood on her hands.

Once again, he missed. This woman was too fast, and too dangerous. Tremor was chump change compared to her - and now they were both gone. Looking at the space where they'd just been, Enji's heart dropped. Silver was gone, too. Outside, just barely audible through a nearby window, came a bloodcurdling scream. Enji blasted the wall out of his way, looking down into the street below.

Standing in the middle of the street was the woman, Tremor sinking to the ground next to her. She was the source of the scream, and as Enji followed the path of the chain tangled around her ankle, he saw why. Silver stood two feet away, soaked in blood and scowling, chain tangled around their half-healed wrist. Somehow, Silver had managed to wrap their weapon around the woman's ankle. Enji jumped down from the second story of the abandoned warehouse, landing several feet behind Tremor and his new girlfriend in a pile of rubble he'd created by blowing out a wall. As he straightened up, Enji heard Silver speak in a bone-chilling drawl.

"You're in for a very bad day, little girl."

Chapter Text

Wrapping the chain around Tish's ankle seemed like a good idea at the time. She was going to get away, and she would bring Tremor with her: even through the daze of blood-loss and the overuse of your quirk, you knew that would be bad. You'd been living life on the edge of a knife since his first appearance in Japan, and you had no intention of living that way for the rest of your life. Tremor needed to go down, and his psycho girlfriend needed to go with him. So, when her ankle appeared just within reach of your chain, you let instinct take over.

Travelling via Tish's quirk without direct contact was unpleasant, to say the least. She seemed to disappear and reappear in a fraction of a second, and when she'd teleported you earlier, it had felt like you were in the black emptiness for less than a second. But, being dragged by your chain as she teleported, it apparently took longer. The darkness was all-consuming, the silence deafening. You thought you were going to lose your mind before you finally arrived once more in the present: in the middle of the street, in the same position you'd been in when you'd reached for her ankle to begin with.

Between recovering from the black chasm of Tish's teleportation and your own blood loss, standing up was a chore. Every nerve in your body screamed in protest as you stood, and the world around you spun when you looked up to glare at her. She stared at you with a look of abject horror, and it took two deep breaths for you to center yourself enough to speak. The fear in her eyes was something you could use, so you made an empty threat.

"You're in for a very bad day, little girl."

She flinched as if you'd struck her, fear making the blood drain from her face. The knife in her hand hung limp, forgotten: Tremor, clinging to her shoulders with a broken leg, sank to the ground. His face was as pale as hers was, but he wasn't a threat to you any more. Tremor was a force to behold when he was angry, something to be feared. But when he was afraid? The man was useless, as harmless as a toddler that hadn't yet manifested a quirk. No, you didn't care about Tremor any more.

As you started to swing the other end of your chain, hoping you had a casual ‘I have all the time in the world’ look on your face, she seemed to come back to reality. She blinked several times, and adjusted the knife in her hand. When her eyes turned blue, you felt yourself flinch instinctively, not at all looking forward to another trip into the nether. Adjusting the trajectory of your chain at the absolute last moment, you took in a sharp breath to prepare yourself for what was to come.

When light returned, you felt yourself falling, and heard a crack as your chain made contact. She screeched, and before you could process where she'd teleported you to, the world went black once more. When the ground appeared beneath your feet again, you withdrew the length of your chain and got it started once more, grinning at her viciously. You'd successfully tethered yourself to her with your chain, and though using your right hand risked undoing all of Recovery Girl’s work, you knew you had her cornered. What use was teleportation in a fight if the person you were fighting came with you every time you moved?

It took two more jumps before she understood the problem. In that time, you landed two more hits: one to her shoulder and one to the side of her knee. As she limped forward, mad fury in her eyes, you brought the chain around in another swing, this time aiming at her head. She ducked just in time, lunging forward with that deadly knife in hand. A sidestep, a swing of your chain, and she took another hit, this time to the small of her back. She yelped, redirecting her knife at your side. You caught her with your right hand, hoping it had enough strength to hold her off. You were nearly tripping over your own chain now, but you had one thing going for you: clearly, this woman had no idea how to fight without the use of her quirk.

Feeling the chain from her ankle rubbing against the side of your leg, you almost laughed at the absurdity of it all. With just a jerk of your leg and a twist of your upper body, you managed to spin the woman and put all of your weight into her side, slamming her into the ground. Her knife clattered across the pavement, useless, as she stared up at you in horror. With a grunt of effort, you brought your left hand up in an awkward uppercut, somehow managing to hit her at just the right angle and knock her out. With a groan, you rolled off the woman and looked around for Tremor and Endeavor.

Tremor lay on the floor a few feet away, Endeavor's boot against the side of his neck. He looked at you with a mixture of fear and fury, a little bit of drool trickling from his lips. DIzzy and silly from blood loss, a giggle escaped your lips as you looked at him. His face screwed up with confusion, and you laughed outright, flipping him the bird.

"What was that about not having the flaming asshole to save me?" You asked, still laughing. Somewhere far above you, you felt the heat rise. Endeavor didn't seem to appreciate your humor, but you were too lost in amusement at the look on Tremor's face to care.

--

"You need a doctor."

"I am a doctor, Endeavor. What I need is a shower. And a bed."

“Where will you go?”

“Home. Where else? I’m not going anywhere ‘till I see these two in police custody, though.” You were sitting on the pavement several feet away from the unconscious Tish, your chain still wrapped around her ankle. Looking at it through your quirk, you could see some stress fractures: you were afraid to look at your wrist. If the strain of carrying you through her quirk had damaged her ankle, that meant your already injured wrist would be damaged once more. You weren’t looking forward to explaining this one to Recovery Girl.

“You can’t travel like that.”

“...Huh?” You looked down at yourself, and realized that you were absolutely drenched in blood. Your shirt, once a decent shade of light grey, was blackened with half-dried blood. Your slacks, slightly loose so you could breathe in them, were now sticking unpleasantly to one thigh. Your entire right arm and hand were reddened with blood, and the bandages that had been supporting your half-healed bones were unrecognizable. “...Oh, I guess I do look like a horror movie extra.”

“Silver. I was referring to your injuries.”

“Endeavor. I just told you I’m fine.”

“Your throat was slashed. I saw the pool of blood, Silver. You can’t tell me you can recover all of that blood in a matter of minutes-”

“Because your little file tells you I can’t? Public record doesn’t have everything about my quirk, Sunshine.” Normally, you could produce blood to help yourself recover from blood loss. But the process took a lot of your quirk, and you were running rather low. Dangerously low. So you’d recovered what you needed to function and keep yourself awake, and left the rest to nature. Not that you were going to admit that to Endeavor.

“I’ve told you, Silver, that file was to assist in the investigation against Tremor,” Endeavor sounded nearly as exhausted as you felt, and suddenly you remembered how late he’d been to your appointment. He’d been dangerously overheated then, too - and the idiot had picked up some weights as you were leaving. For a man who wanted to be Number 1 so badly, he didn’t seem to know how to take care of himself sometimes.

“I could understand your files on me if they were exclusively about my time with Tremor. But that folder starts off with me in grade school, Endeavor. There’s no way it could possibly be beneficial to your investigation.”

“...Can this conversation wait until another time?” He asked, rubbing his face. You noticed blood on his bicep, and narrowed your eyes.

“Yes. Are you injured?”

“It’s a minor cut,” he said dismissively, turning toward the sound of sirens. Scowling, you moved to stand up.

“It’s a stab wound, Endeavor, and there’s no reason to leave it bleeding like that.” You paused after you stood, waiting patiently for the darkness at the edge of your vision to disappear as you took a deep breath.

“It’s fine,” he insisted, sounding annoyed. You were getting annoyed with him always being annoyed. Once your vision cleared, you reached out and put a hand on that cut, healing it in a quick rush before he could pull away. He spun around, catching your hand before you could drop it back down to your side.

“Please let go,” you grumbled, glaring at his gloved hand. He hesitated, but let go anyway.

“You startled me. There was no need for you to use your energy on that, Silver.”

“You got hurt defending me, Endeavor. That’s all the reason I need to heal you.”

The police approached a moment later, drawing Endeavor’s attention away before he could argue with you further. You stayed in the background as the pro hero took over, explaining everything that had happened and describing the details of Tish and Tremor’s quirks to the police. You watched the two get bundled up by the officers, detangling your chain and wrapping it once more around your waist. When it became clear that you were no longer needed by the police, you turned to leave. Before you got far, a hand grabbed you by the shoulder.

“Endeavor-” you started, but he cut you off before you could get any further.

“You cannot travel covered in blood and dizzy as you are. There are showers, beds, and changes of clothes in my agency building for my sidekicks. And since it’s only two blocks away, it would make more sense for you to go there than for you to travel home.” Something cold was pressed into your good hand, and when you looked down you found it was a bottle of water, already open. Endeavor let go of your shoulder, seemingly remembering you asking him to let go earlier.

Endeavor had a way of getting on your very last nerve before turning everything around and proving himself to be a decent man, after all. You let out a sigh, rubbing your forehead. He’d made too much sense for you to argue.

“Alright,” you finally muttered.

Chapter Text

Enji stacked a folded sweatshirt on top of the sweatpants he’d already placed on the bed, looking around the tiny room and trying to figure out if he’d forgotten something. The sound of the shower running in the attached bathroom was more distracting than he cared to admit. More than once, he caught himself glancing toward the door, as if hoping Silver would walk out in a towel. He really needed to get this ridiculous lust for the other hero under control before he made an even stupider decision than the first.

Realizing the shower had abruptly stopped running, Enji nearly ran out of the room. Just as the door behind him closed, he heard the door of the bathroom open. Grimacing at his childish reaction, Enji stomped away. Maybe it was exhaustion making him so… Well, all he could really do now was sleep, anyway.

--

You stood, leaning heavily against the wall of the shower and watching your own blood swirl down the drain. It seemed to take forever, and you felt your eyes getting heavier by the minute. Sure, some soap - or at least some movement, would have helped to speed the process up…. But, then, you weren’t sure you had the strength. The walk back to the agency had been taxing enough. Taking your clothes off to climb into the shower had almost seemed more work than it was worth.

As you stumbled out of the shower, trying not to slip or lose your grip on your towel, you looked toward the pile of ruined clothes you’d left on the floor. A problem for the morning, you decided, kicking them into a corner before opening the door to the attached room.

The room was small, but comfortable, painted in an off-white color that seemed to draw you even further into your half-asleep stupor. As you looked at the neatly stacked clothes on the corner of the bed, you considered your options. You could go to sleep naked, and deal with getting dressed in the morning, risking someone opening the door before you woke. Or, you could struggle to put the clothes on your still-damp body and risk putting something on backwards. You weren’t sure how long you stood there, dripping slightly as you decided what to do. Finally, you took a deep breath and reached for the sweatshirt.

--

Enji’s bed was too soft. He’d considered changing it out for a firmer mattress in the past, but hadn’t gotten around to it. Usually, by the time he got to bed, he was too exhausted to care. Tonight, he was so exhausted that he cared twice as much. Sinking into the mattress, he glared up at his ceiling. Taking a deep breath, he forced himself to close his eyes and at least attempt to sleep.

An image of Silver, face down in a pool of blood, was waiting for him. Snapping his eyes back open, Enji scowled at the inoffensive ceiling once more. Had he not responded to Doctor Currier’s vision quickly enough? He couldn’t even blame it on exhaustion: Silver had returned whatever energy he’d used up in the morning just before-

He took his mind away from that line of thought, stubbornly refusing to think about that particularly rash decision.

Silver had very nearly died. They could play it off as nothing all they wanted to, but Enji had been in the hero business long enough to know what a pool of blood that size meant. He’d been certain Silver was dead. Rolling onto his side, Enji closed his eyes once more.

This time, it was Silver standing up, chains tangled around a battered wrist and covered in half-dried blood. Silver, with a grin on their face that made his skin crawl even now. He’d never seen such a fierce image as he had in that moment. Clothes that had been loose before were clinging to muscles he hadn’t noticed in the past: with his eyes closed, Enji could almost smell Silver - cheap shampoo, tea, and sweat. The scent of blood had been almost unbearable as he’d escorted them back to his agency, but even beneath the tang of iron he’d smelled green tea.

Realizing he wouldn’t be falling asleep any time soon, Enji climbed out of bed with a huff of annoyance. Stomping into the kitchen, he dug a teapot out of one of the cabinets.

--

You woke from a nightmare, gasping and sweating as you looked around an unfamiliar room. The details of the dream were fuzzy to say the least, and you didn’t put any effort toward clearing them up. Your heart was racing and the blanket you’d curled so comfortably under was on the floor; whatever the dream had been about, you didn’t really feel like reliving it.

Looking around, you found your phone on the nightstand next to your bed. You didn’t remember putting it there, but you were grateful to find it so close. The battery was nearly dead, but you found a reply from Inara reminding you to take care of yourself and an email from the UA school principal, telling you not to worry about coming in the following day. Looking at the clock on your phone, you groaned - 0130 in the morning. There was no falling back to sleep after whatever that dream had been, and you were still too exhausted to take yourself home.

Dragging yourself out of the bed, you made your way to the restroom. Your clothes lay where you’d left them, in a pile in the corner of the bathroom floor next to the toilet. You sorted through the pile, grimacing at the fact that some of it was still sticky to the touch. Finding your wallet and an old pen, you stuck your ruined clothes in a trash bag you found under the sink and rolled it up so no one would have to see the gory contents. Satisfied, you dragged yourself to your feet and leaned against the sink, glaring at yourself in the mirror.

Your hair was an absolute mess: you hadn’t bothered with any products in your earlier shower, opting for a thorough rinse and calling it ‘good’. And then, too tired to care, you hadn’t bothered to brush your hair. Or dry it before climbing into the bed. The left side was plastered to your head, and the other stuck out in a random assortment of flawless curls and straight spikes. Tugging a finger through your hair, you grimaced: no brushing was going to save this mess. Looking around the restroom once more, you found another towel. Might as well clean up properly, since you wouldn’t be falling asleep any time soon.

The shower turned out to be exactly what you needed: by the time you climbed back into the bed and checked the clock, it was well past 2 am and you were sleepy once more. Curling up underneath the wrinkled blanket, you closed your eyes and fell back to sleep almost immediately.

--

When SIlver didn’t answer the knock on their door straight away, Enji began to wonder if he should have taken them to a hospital after all. Banging on the door a second time, louder now, he was relieved to hear a muffled ‘come in'.

Opening it, he found Silver sitting up in bed, still tangled in blankets and hair sticking out in random directions. The doctor glared at him through bleary eyes, clearly having been woken by his knocking. Enji considered apologizing, but the scowl was already fading from the other hero’s face.

“ ‘Morning,” Silver mumbled, running a hand through messy hair. It didn’t help the hair settle at all.

“Good morning,” Enji replied shortly. He stood there for a moment, unsure of what to say, as Silver looked around the room with heavy-lidded eyes.

“Thanks for letting me stay,” they finally said, turning back to him. He responded with a grunt. After another awkward pause, Enji cleared his throat and held up the folder he’d brought in with him.

“The case to find ex-hero Tremor is closed,” he announced. Silver looked at the folder for a moment, seeming faintly confused. Finally, a tiny smile touched their lips.

“Good.”

“This… is your folder, actually,” Enji managed to say. Silver just blinked, seemingly too tired to care. After a moment, Enji called on his quirk, watching the folder turn to ashes as Silver stared.

“Thank you,” they finally said. There was genuine gratitude in Silver’s voice as they spoke, and Enji felt a tiny jolt of relief. Some irrational part of his mind had told him that burning the file wouldn’t be enough, but Silver didn’t seem to have anything to add.

“I was tired of hearing about it,” he grunted. Immediately,he regretted the harshness of his words - he hadn’t meant that, not truly. It wasn’t hearing Silver complain that had been the problem - it was knowing just how uncomfortable the file seemed to make them that had bothered him. He glared at his hand, watching the last of the ashes fall to the ground. He was almost afraid to see Silver’s reaction to such a stupid statement. To his surprise, he heard a chuckle. Looking up, he found Silver laughing into their hand, eyes twinkling.

“I was tired of bringing it up,” they admitted, grinning.

--

You woke to a banging at the door, your sleep-addled brain telling you it was an emergency. Sitting up, you looked around the room and bit back a burst of panic - this was definitely not your room. It wasn’t your room in Japan, and it wasn’t the room you’d left behind in America. Taking a deep breath, you fought through the fog of exhaustion until you remembered why you were in a stranger’s room.

Just as your heart started to settle down, there was another, louder bang at the door. Mildly annoyed, you ordered them to come inside as you sat up in bed, legs tangled in the blanket.

There was an awkward pause, and you realized you’d been scowling. Poor Endeavor - he had no idea how much you hated mornings. Pulling yourself together, you offered him a little smile and a morning greeting. He responded by catching his file about you on fire. You stared for a long time at the flame in his hand, considering all of the responses you could offer.

You could ask him to burn the file he had on Inara. You could tease him, asking if he had another one stashed somewhere else. Or you could even tell him to reprint everything and put it away somewhere - that Tremor was still a threat, in prison or otherwise. Finally, you just thanked him. You would have taken his word for it if he’d told you he’d destroyed the file; instead, he’d taken it directly to you and shown you the destruction. Choosing to do it this way was almost.. Touching.

“I was tired of hearing about it,” he said gruffly. You stared at him for a moment, processing what he’d said. The look of immediate regret in his eyes told you he hadn’t really meant it like that, and you found yourself laughing.

What an angry, awkward matchstick Endeavor had turned out to be.

Chapter Text

When and how Inara had contacted your peers at UA was, ultimately, irrelevant. You asked anyway, staring at the box she’d presented with a certain sense of dread. That Midnight and Present Mic had been directly involved in whatever was in the box was less than encouraging.

“Doesn’t matter,” Inara insisted, her deep brown eyes lit with excitement, “just open it!”

“Ina,” you started, reaching for the box with a carefully bandaged hand. Your head was still aching, you felt like you hadn’t slept in three weeks, and Inara had given you a box tied with bright red and gold, sparkly ribbon. You wanted to mirror her excitement, but you simply didn’t have the energy. Besides, you had certain suspicions of what might be in the box, and it wasn’t necessarily a good thing.

“Stop whining,” she snapped, eyes hardening with annoyance. You knew Inara just wanted to see you smile, so you shoved your annoyance and exhaustion to the side and offered her one. A tired, half-attempt at a smile, but a smile all the same. The anger in your best friend’s eyes disappeared instantly, and her bright grin of excitement returned.

“Thanks,” you mumbled, pulling at the glittery ribbon. Some of the glitter drifted off, and it took all of your self-control not to wince. You’d be covered in glitter for days .

--

“Good morning, class,” you said softly, setting your notes down on the podium at the front of the room. The class, which had been somewhat noisy when you opened the door but instantly silent when they noticed the bags under your eyes and the crease between your brows, chorused a pleasant response. It wasn’t really morning any more, but you weren’t keeping track at this point. They probably assumed you said the wrong thing, given how strong your American accent could be when you were tired. And you were, undeniably, exhausted. Taking a swig of the tea Inara had prepared for you that morning, you forced a small smile on your face.

“I am Doctor (LN, FN). I’ll be your instructor for General Health here at U.A. this year. I'll also spend some time assisting your other teachers, and covering when they’re unavailable for work. I’m a professional hero from America, though I haven’t been working publicly for several years. Before we get started on the class syllabus, do you have any questions?” One of them raised his hand instantly, his wavy green hair sticking out in every direction. If your eyes weren’t blurry from the migraine, you might have tried to count his freckles.

“Was that you, fighting the American Pro Hero, Tremor?”

“The one Endeavor let get away,” a boy said quietly from the back of the class. This one had hair that was half red and half white, his eyes just as mismatched. A shockingly blue eye, standing out all the more because of the reddish burn scar surrounding it, made you narrow your eyes in his direction. Glancing at your class roster, you realized you were teaching one of Endeavor’s children. He had mentioned that, after all.

“Yes, that was me. Though Tremor hasn’t been recognized as a Pro Hero in America or anywhere else for a  long time.”

“He’s actually been classified as a villain, hasn’t he?” The green-haired boy asked, leaning forward in his chair. The excitement in his eyes was right on the border of fanaticism, and you couldn’t help but be reminded of Mike. Forcing that thought from your mind, you nodded. Glancing at your roster, you tried to memorize the name Midoriya. It probably wouldn’t stick.

“Yes, Tremor was classified as a villain after he attacked a fellow pro-hero, and a few civilians.”

“What’s your hero name?” The girl’s skin was a stunning shade of lavender, her hair a bright pink with little horns sticking out. She had a light in her eyes that reminded you of Inara’s excited smile just that morning. Suddenly self-conscious, you tugged at the jacket you’d found in that glittery box.

“I was known as Silver. Though, as I’ve said, I haven’t been working publicly for some time. That, and I was never particularly well-known or popular.”

“What’s your quirk, then?” He had what appeared to be a permanent scowl, his red eyes glittering with an intelligence that was probably unnoticed by everyone who only saw his rough exterior. You paused, biting back a snappy reply that you knew you would regret later.

“I’m a healer,” you said shortly, trying to lean against the podium without being obvious about it.

“That’s such a rare quirk!” Midoriya said loudly. You flinched as his voice echoed in your aching head.

“Yes, healing is unusually rare. Luckily for all of us, it’ll lend me a certain extra perspective when it comes to teaching all of you.”

“You don’t look like a healing hero,” someone muttered. You didn’t bother to see who it was. Again, you shifted your deep blue jacket.

Inara’s gift had been a new hero costume, with inputs from - apparently - most of the teachers at the school. A dark blue jacket, almost but not quite leather with a shockingly red button-up underneath. At least they’d offered you an homage to your usual clothes. The pants looked similar to the black denim you used to wear in your old hero costume, though they were made of a sturdier stuff. Fire-resistant, Inara had said, her implication so clear that you nearly blushed even now. The chains around your waist, silver and heavy, was probably the last thing anyone would expect a healer to carry. You grimaced, forcing yourself to stop patting at the heavy jacket.

“How I look is irrelevant. I’m a healer. Now, then, let’s get to your lesson.” You glanced up again, looking around the room. That single, icy blue eye caught yours again. A boy with a fire-based quirk, and a father with so much fire in him that he needed help to keep his insides from melting. He should have a resistance to fire… so why did he have a burn scar?

--

The night was a long one. Your quirk was starting to replenish itself, and instead of falling into an exhausted, dreamless sleep, you were plagued by nightmares. The face of every person you’d failed to save during your time as a doctor, mixed in among those you’d failed to save as a hero. The child in the school that Tremor had destroyed, his life trickling out of him even as you’d poured your own life in. Tremor, eyes wild and spit dripping from the corner of his mouth. The sensation of half of your ribcage being shattered overlaid with a knife making its way across your neck. The warmth of the red puddle you’d woken in painted every dream with the color of blood. Somewhere around one in the morning, you raced into the bathroom to throw up, the dream that had woken you already fading from memory but the taste of it still in your mouth.

It was all followed by a dream that started wonderfully - Endeavor, his hand around your waist and blue eyes burning into yours. You closed your eyes, leaning into his kiss and cherishing the warmth he gave off in waves. When he pulled away to catch his breath, you opened your eyes and saw Tremor there instead, green eyes glittering with madness. You woke up with a start, sitting up in bed and considering running to the restroom to throw up again.

Instead, you put on your exercise clothes and went for a run. By the time you got back and into the shower, Inara was just waking up. She gave you a hug before the two of you parted ways, a knowing look in her eyes.

--

“Silver,” someone said behind you. Nose-deep in a news article on your phone, it didn’t process for nearly half a paragraph that they were speaking to you. Blinking, you dragged your eyes away from a blurred picture of Endeavor and back to the teachers’ lounge around you.

“I’m sorry,” you mumbled, “what did you say?”

“I was simply saying ‘good afternoon’, my friend!” All Might’s voice seemed to bounce off of the walls of the lounge. You had to crane your neck to look him in the face, as absurdly tall as he was.

“Good afternoon, All Might. How was your first day?”

“Fantastic!” He said instantly. There was something like a nervous pause, and you could have sworn a tiny frown touched his face, a crease appearing between his bushy eyebrows.

“Please,” you said quietly, “sit down.” Just as subtle as that hint of a frown, you got a sense of relief from this gentle giant. Had he expected you to send him away?

“Thank you!” He said, sinking into the chair across from you. Did the chair groan under his weight, or was that your imagination?

“You don’t have to stay all.. Puffed up, or whatever,” you reminded him, shifting so you could slip your phone into your pocket. A puff of steam made you blink, and when your eyes cleared, the skeleton-man you’d met at your first teachers’ conference was sitting where the giant hero had been. A small smile touched your lips; All Might’s ability to fill the room disappeared with his muscles, and left you feeling considerably less crowded. “Do you need something, or were you just looking for company?”

“Actually,” there was definitely a crease between his brows now, a look of worry that made you instantly want to put a hand on his shoulder and tell him it would be alright. “I was hoping to ask you a favor, of sorts.”

“What can I help you with?” You asked, leaning forward in your chair and settling your chin on interlocked fingers. His face lit up in a smile and for just a wild moment, you considered asking him if he were single. No, life was complicated enough with a certain grumpy fireball in your life.

“I was teaching a Hero Lesson with class 1A today, and one of the students...”

“Midoriya?” He winced visibly when you said the boy’s name. “He broke more bones, didn’t he? I saw him leaving Recovery Girl’s office, wrapped in bandages again.”

“Y-yes. I’m afraid that his battle with young Bakugou got out of hand.”

“Well, I’m sure Doctor Shuzenji took good care of him.”

“Doctor…? Oh, you mean Recovery Girl?”

“Yes, Mr. Yagi.”

“Well,” he continued, brushing past his confusion, “I was hoping you could - ah - check her work? I understand your quirk is significantly different from hers. Perhaps you could speed up his healing?”

“I appreciate your concern, Mr. Yagi, but I seriously doubt it. My quirk does almost nothing with bones, and that seems to be your boy’s problem.”

“...I see. Thank you for considering it, though.”

“Of course. If your students get any serious bruises, or flesh wounds, let me know. I have a much better time with those. After the school nurse has seen them, of course.”

“Well, hopefully that will never happen!” He said cheerfully, something like his muscle-form’s smile appearing. You returned his smile, leaning back in your chair once more.

“Hopefully,” you agreed. Yagi stood, turning to leave. He paused at the door, as if a thought had just occurred to him, and turned back.

“Doctor?” He asked, looking over his shoulder at you.

“Yes, Mr. Yagi?”

“Has Eraserhead or Thirteen spoken with you about the Hero Course lesson they’re planning?”

“No. Should I expect them to?”

“I’m not certain. Thirteen mentioned inviting you to the class, so the students could have an instructor with more medical experience there.”

“Oh. What’s the class about?”

“It’ll be a rescue simulation at USJ.”

Chapter Text

Thirteen was down for the count, Eraserhead had run off on his own, and the only thing standing between a small horde of villains and a group of class 1A students was you. You had your chain, certainly, and you were finally fully recovered from your fight with Tremor and his girlfriend. But you were never much of a fighter, and the hand that had been crushed so recently was already complaining.

“Wh-what do we do?” One of the students whispered behind you. There was genuine terror in her voice, and it pulled at your heartstrings. No child should experience this kind of fear at all, let alone while they’re at school. You sank to your knees near Thirteen, reaching a hand into the torn back of Thirteen’s costume.

“Iida will get more teachers to help. For now, form up around Thirteen and take care of each other. I’ll take care of the rest.”

Working as quickly as you could, you kept a watchful eye on the approaching villains and sent a great rush of your healing energy into the other hero. Thirteen’s injuries were terrible, but they weren’t life-threatening and most of them would heal fairly well without your direct attention. You put most of the energy you gave them into their cells, storing the energy so that Recovery Girl would have something to work with. For now, Thirteen was unconscious, and you had a group of villains to fight. Standing back up, you took a moment to gather yourself and prepare for the fight ahead.

You’d always had messy hair, thankfully. The costume Inara and the others had helped develop wasn’t as intimidating as the one you’d worn during your time in America, but it was clearly the outfit of a professional hero. And every sharp projectile that came in contact with it washed off like water, something you would have to thank your friends for coming up with. The wild grin you’d practiced in your youth seemed to be out of reach, so you settled for a scowl of pure fury. Using your quirk to shut off your sense of pain made a shimmer of silver glitter around your eyes, emphasizing your scowl. Half of the battle was convincing the villains that you were too scary to fight, and you’d spent most of your time in America practicing a frightening appearance.

The villains approached one at a time at first, as if trying to prove to one another that you weren’t a real threat. After the third fell, the sound of your chain hitting his temple making the villains around him wince, they started to approach in groups.

You considered holding your ground; keeping the villains from hurting your students and otherwise waiting for help. But Eraserhead, fighting below with all of his strength and speed, was vastly outnumbered. Not outskilled, certainly - not one of the villains seemed to have any real training - but outnumbered beyond his abilities. As Midoriya had said, Eraserhead relied primarily on surprising his enemies and taking them on one or two at a time. He needed help.

So you inched forward, taking a few steps after each villain you fought fell. Eventually, the students gathered around Thirteen were far behind you, standing fast and watching the chaos below them with a mixture of awe and fear. You glanced back every once in a while, making sure no one had slipped by you to get to the kids. What had happened to the other students? Were they okay?

A villain the size of a small barn and coated in rock disrupted your chain of thought. The first blow from your chain did nothing; he wasn’t coated in rock, but made out of it. You looked closely at his anatomy with your quirk, desperately seeking a weakness. A villain with spikes coming out of his shoulders and arms tried to sneak by while you were distracted, but you twitched your chain in his direction at the last moment. He fell to the ground, groaning and clutching the kneecap you’d shattered.

The human rockslide charged at you, and you rolled to the side to dodge him. He got past, thinking his way was clear to the students, and you spun around, flinging your chain right at his neck. It wrapped around him like a leash, tangling itself at the back of his neck as you yanked with all your might.

Instead of pulling him to a stop like an errant poodle, you were pulled along by his momentum, dragging along the ground like a cartoon character. Grimacing, you wrapped the chain around your arm, pulling yourself closer and closer to him with great effort. Finally, you were against his back, your hands and arms tangled so completely in the chain that he couldn’t buck you off. His struggling got slower, weaker, and finally he sank to his knees. Exhausted, you forced yourself to keep your position until he was fully unconscious.

It was as you were untangling your chains from his neck that you felt a tingle in your left shoulderblade; the man whose kneecap you’d shattered could shoot those needle-like spikes, apparently. You finished unwrapping the chain, turning around to look at the man. There was fear in his eyes as he realized his attack hadn’t even hurt. Finally, you found that crazed grin you’d practiced for so long.

“You shouldn’t have done that,” you spoke in a deceptively mild voice, your chain beginning to spin again already. He crawled backward, dragging his injured leg and begging forgiveness. You responded with a resounding crack against the side of his skull. You might have hit too hard - he had a severe concussion, at least - but it got your point across.

The last few villains between you and Eraserhead melted away, fear in their eyes as they looked between you and the steadily growing pile of villains your coworker was leaving behind. Unwilling to risk the villains taking advantage of your distraction, you went about with brutal efficiency, striking every sensitive spot you could get your chains to come in contact with.

--

You were panting by the time the last villain fell. You probably hadn’t fought that hard in your entire career as a hero. Gasping for air, hands on your knees, you saw a drop of blood hit the ground in front of you. That needle was still in your shoulder - taking it out would make you bleed out - but you were otherwise unhurt. Looking up, you saw Eraserhead approaching a grey-haired villain, looking exhausted but ready to fight. They were talking, but you were just far enough away that you couldn’t really hear them. Taking another deep breath, you straightened up and marched forward. If there were only two or three villains left, maybe you and Eraserhead could handle them. Then you could round up the children and -

A great black mass appeared behind Eraserhead, obscuring your view of the hero and the grey-haired man he’d been about to fight. The creature was massive, and there was something… wrong , about how it looked when you saw it through the silver tint of your quirk. Faster than you could really process, the monster had picked Eraserhead up and smacked him face-first into the ground. You watched in horror as your quirk showed you every gruesome detail of your coworker’s injury in real time. Fighting back a surge of sickening fear, you ran forward. Injuries could be healed, you told yourself. The important thing was to keep them from getting worse.

A few villains, somehow missed by both yourself and Eraserhead, appeared between you and the atrocities in the USJ courtyard. Rather than slowing down and taking them one or two at a time, you leaned into your run, building more momentum and tackling the one directly in front of you. The others tripped over themselves trying to grab you, and you kicked a foot out to knock one’s legs out from beneath her. The pile of bodies on you slowed you down, but they were out in a matter of moments.

It had still taken too long. When you got back up and looked toward Eraserhead, he was crushed into the ground inches from a pool of water, the great black monster holding one of his arms at a disturbing angle. The grey-haired man with the beast was reaching toward something in the water…

A student. The girl with long black hair and big eyes, Asui. Eraserhead did something - the man made contact, but whatever his quirk was didn’t do anything - and the monster squished him again. You were in range now, though, forcing yourself to look at the enemy instead of your badly injured friend.

The grey-haired man caught your chain, turning toward you. You couldn’t see his eyes through the hair, or his face through the creepy hand-shaped mask he wore. The chain crumbled to dust, but at least he wasn’t looking at the students any more. There were three - Asui had been in direct danger, but Midoriya and the boy with purple balls instead of hair were in the water with him.

“I don’t know you,” the grey-haired man said in a bored voice. He approached, the crumbling remains of part of your chain falling from his fingers. You reeled the rest in, focusing not on the grey-haired man but on the great black beast behind him. Refusing to look at Eraserhead. “Are you a new hero…?”

“I don’t know you, either,” you said shortly. “Should I care?”

The black beast was gone. Your heart stopped as you felt a looming presence directly behind you. You couldn’t even turn around before a massive hand was on your arm, pulling you directly up with such force that you felt bones snap like twigs. Your left shoulder was completely out of its socket, the arm itself busted in multiple places. Your quirk was the only thing that kept you from passing out. Reaching under your jacket with a half-healed right hand, you found the knife Inara had given you and aimed for the black arm that held you up. The knife did absolutely nothing.

“You didn’t even wince,” the grey-haired man was next to his beast again, looking up at you with curiosity. You cursed at him, throwing the otherwise useless knife in his direction. His pet monster caught it with ease, wild eyes flickering between you and his master. Knowing it would be useless, you kicked at the monster’s chest.

Chapter Text

An explosion sounded from the entrance of USJ, and your heart stopped. Had villains gotten past you to the kids you were supposed to be defending? Your back was to the entrance, so you couldn’t see what was behind you. Cursing some more, you pulled your legs up and hooked them on the outstretched arm of the bird-man who held you like a ragdoll, frozen in confusion as he looked toward the sound.

Hanging awkwardly, partially upside-down, you could finally see what had caused the explosion, and a rush of relief washed over you. All Might, massive and scowling, stood in the falling dust of what had once been the entrance to USJ.

You let out a burst of laughter, craning around to give that grey-haired creep your most vicious grin.

“You’re fucked now, Handjob,” you growled. He wasn’t even paying attention, but it made you feel better.

A rush of wind later, and you were dropped to the ground as your enemies turned their attention to All Might. The massive hero had grabbed all three students and Eraserhead, pulling them away from the main fight. He looked at you, a question in his eyes, and you offered a reassuring smile. The great beast was still behind you, his grey-haired master only inches away, but you couldn’t let All Might know how afraid their proximity made you. He needed to think you were alright, and that he’d arrived in time. He had, after all. That monster had been moments away from shoving your knife into your chest.

Warmth spreading from your side made you look down and curse. Well, at least you’d gotten your knife back.

All Might charged the great black monster, coming so close to you that you felt a breeze and smelled the material of his costume. Standing, you put a hand around the knife in your side and turned around. You were dizzy - blood loss - but you managed to stare the grey-haired man down all the same. Somewhere in the scuffle, his creepy hand-shaped mask had been knocked off. You watched him clutch at his face, panic in his features as he reached for the hand. While he was distracted, you pulled the knife from your side and put it back in its sheath. Giving your stab wound a quick healing session, you sank into a fighting position. If All Might fought the big one, you could take the little one...

“Silver!” All Might’s voice cut through your anger. “Eraserhead needs help! I will take care of this, but please… go help Eraserhead!”

He was right, of course. You were a healer, not a fighter. The grey-haired man had his mask back on, and for a brief second, he locked eyes with you. You could almost feel the dismissal as he turned his attention to All Might instead. Scowling, you forced yourself to turn your back on the fight and run toward the students. They huddled around Eraserhead, a mixture of confused fear and overjoyed relief on their faces. Midoriya looked more worried than the other two, but it was clear they all thought the fight was over.

“Pick him up,” you ordered. “We need to get out of All Might’s way.”

“Teacher,” Asui said, looking worried, “You’re hurt!”

“I’ve had worse. Let’s go, kids.”

“All Might!” Midoriya wasn’t even listening to you, though he let Asui put Eraserhead on his back all the same. “You can’t. That brain villain took One fo- uh - he took a punch that didn’t break my arm, but he didn’t even twitch. He’s gotta be -”

“Young Midoriya!” All Might interrupted. You were barely listening, inspecting Eraserhead instead. “It’s fine!”

“You heard him,” you said as the four of you walked away, cradling Eraserhead between you. “Let’s get out of the way.”

All Might and the great black beast started fighting, creepy mask-guy watching from a distance. Bursts of wind from All Might’s punches made your hair dance, and the children kept looking back. You focused on Eraserhead, stopping as much damage as you could without sinking fully into your quirk. You wouldn’t be able to walk once you really bent your effort to the healing, and you wanted to get as far away from that monster as you could.

When you felt you were a safe distance away, you stopped the children and hand them transfer Eraserhead to you, resting his chin on your shoulder.

“I need you three to protect me,” you said in your calmest voice. “All Might can handle the ones in the courtyard, but other little villains might be around. I’ll be completely defenseless while I heal Eraserhead.”

“Yes, Teacher,” Asui answered instantly. The short boy hesitated, but agreed. Midoriya was completely distracted by All Might below. Forcing yourself not to look toward the fight, you closed your eyes and sank into the silver of your quirk.

--

When you finished putting the worst of Eraserhead’s broken pieces back together, you pulled out of your quirk to look around.

All Might stood in a great cloud of smoke and steam. Even from a distance, you could see that he was about to fall out, his muscles disappearing in a puff of smoke. But the other two villains still stood nearby, looking at All Might with obvious shock.

You’d done what you could for Eraserhead and Thirteen. Now the only ones left were All Might and any of the students who’d been hurt in the chaos. Standing up, you glanced at your damaged arm. It wasn’t anything that would cause permanent damage, at least. Satisfied, you waved at the girl Asui, who seemed to be keeping a cool head.

“Eraserhead will sleep some more. Get him to the entrance with the others and wait there for the other teachers to arrive.”

“Yes, Teacher,” she said, turning to pick Eraserhead up. The boy followed suit, glancing back at All Might a few times but otherwise doing as he’d been told. Rolling your good shoulder, you started walking.

And a villain stood up in front of you. It was one of the ones Eraserhead had taken on at the beginning, her grey hair in strange-looking braids. Grimacing, you picked up the remnants of your chain and started swinging it. You’d have to fight one-handed, with a broken chain, but you felt you could take a few of these chums on.

There was an uproar below as the woman fell, a red mark on her jaw where your chain had hit. As you looked below, you saw Midoriya flying through the air toward the villains All Might had been fighting. Even from this distance, you could see that both of his legs were broken. Cursing, you started moving forward. More villains approached, slowing  you down even more. Your body was too damaged and physically exhausted to keep this up, but you had to try. All Might was at his limit, and Midoriya had no idea how to control his quirk.

A gunshot sounded. And another, and another; you turned to look as the villains you were about to fight did the same.

Snipe, his gun firing rapidly, was aiming largely at the grey-haired menace below. Other heroes from the school stood around him, including Present Mic, who you could see was taking a deep breath.

Abandoning dignity, you dropped to the ground like a sack of potatoes, covering your ears. You’d seen what Present Mic could do with that voice.

--

With the fight finally over, and all of the students accounted for, you approached All Might. He was in his small form, sitting on the ground and chatting with Midoriya. When he saw you, a look of great concern came over your face - only then did you remember the damage to your left arm. You gave him what you hoped to be a comforting smile, and turned instead to Midoriya. You didn’t particularly want to hear what All Might had to say about your injuries. The chance that you would sass him back was far too great - his own injuries being far worse than yours.

“Hey, kid,” you said, sinking down into a squat in front of Midoriya. He lay on the ground just as he’d fallen, clearly in too much pain to move. “I can’t do much for your broken bones, but I can put you to sleep so you don’t have to feel them.”

“All Might-” he started. You rolled your eyes.

“I’ll take care of him, too, kid. And so will the rest of your teachers. Let me put you to sleep first, though, okay?”

“Y-yes, Teacher,” he agreed, somewhat mollified by your promise. Clearly, he held All Might to a higher standard than he held himself. Putting a finger to his forehead, you sent a shimmer of energy to the part of his brain that controlled whether he was awake or not, then sent another much larger rush to the rest of his body. Just as you’d done with Thirteen and Eraserhead, you left behind a healthy helping of raw energy for Recovery Girl to work with. Satisfied, you stood up.

The blood loss from your shoulder, and the now-healed hole in your side, made you dizzy. For a moment, you just stood there, back turned to All Might. You didn’t want him to see how much this was taking out of you. He was too kind of a man to let you heal him if he knew that doing so would put you over the edge of exhaustion. But he’d saved your life and the lives of the students, and healing was what you were best at. Taking a deep breath, you turned back around to face the scrawny hero.

“You should get some rest,” he started. You shook your head, walking over to him and sinking down in front of him. Cementoss stood nearby, watching with some concern. At some point, he’d put a wall of cement up between All Might and one of the students.

“I’ll rest once I’ve tended your injuries,” you said firmly. “Cementoss, I’ll need you to tell Recovery Girl not to use her quirk on me. I won’t really have anything for her to work with after this.”

“Of course, Doctor,” Cementoss said. At least he didn’t argue.

“N-no! You should reserve your energy for yourself-” All Might tried to protest, but you were faster than he was in his weakened state. Reaching your right hand out, you planted your palm directly in the center of his forehead and sent a burst of energy into the irritated scar on his side. The big hero let out an involuntary sigh of relief as the pain washed away. A moment later, he sank to his side, asleep just as Midoriya was.

“Thanks for saving us,” you said quietly to the sleeping hero. Sitting back, you looked up at Cementoss, who stood over you both with a look of concern. “I’ll be fine, really. Just don’t take the spike out of my shoulder ‘till Recovery Girl can see it.”

You didn’t hear his answer; you were already unconscious, yourself.

Chapter Text

“And where were you?” He spoke loudly enough to wake you, though you refused to open your eyes. Your head hurt enough without the fluorescent lighting, thank you very much. “Your quirk allows you to see when your friends are in danger, yet you didn’t warn anyone of this attack.”

“My quirk didn’t tell me about this,” Inara’s voice was soft, almost broken. Your eyes popped open instantly as a surge of rage at whoever had said something so vile ran through you.

“Then it’s useless,” he said shortly. The implication - you’re useless - did not go unnoticed. Furious, you sat up, turning in the bed to find Endeavor hovering in the entrance to the hospital room you’d been put in.

“You will apologise,” you growled. Your brain cried out in protest to all of the noise, light, and movement, and you doubled over with a groan. Inara’s hands appeared, gently pulling your hand away from your face so she could get a better look at  you. Your left arm was wrapped in a cast from fingertip to shoulder, bent at the elbow and stuffed in a sling.

“Are you okay?” She asked. Her eyes were red and puffy, her face screwed up in an apology she didn’t owe anyone.

“I’m fine,” you said instantly. “Just a headache from overwork.”

“I’m so-”

“Don’t you dare apologize,” you snapped instantly. “Don’t you dare. We both know your quirk doesn’t work like that. Endeavor is the only one that should be apologizing.”

“I was stating the fact-” he started. You actually stood up, sliding out of the bed and marching forward. Your stomach rolled, and you didn’t walk in a straight line, but you held your ground and put your face inches from his.

“You and that damned file know exactly how useful her quirk is. You and that fucking file know Inara can’t control when or how her quirk works. You and that goddamn-

“(F/N), please-”

“Her quirk tells her who needs to be where and when they need to be there! If her quirk didn’t go off, it was because everyone who was supposed to be involved was already where they needed to be! Don’t you dare accuse my friend of being at fault for anything !”

“I’m not-” he started, a mixture of surprise and anger on his face.

“Apologize right now, or I will throw up on you.” There was a chance you’d throw up on him either way, if you were being completely honest with yourself.

“I… apologize.”

“Better.” Satisfied, you turned back to your bed. Inara was between you and it, tears in her eyes. You paused, put a hand on her shoulder and smiled. Part of your hand on her shoulder was comforting her, and part of it was using her as support so you didn’t fall over. When she forced a smile in return, you crawled back into the bed.

“Apology accepted,” she said quietly, giving Endeavor a bow you’d taught her in your first few weeks in Japan.

“I think I’m gonna need a bucket,” you admitted. The adrenaline was already wearing off, and your entire body hurt. It wasn’t just the injury to your arm, or the overuse of your quirk; you’d fought an extended battle against more villains than you’d likely ever faced at once. Every muscle was sore, every tendon strained. Sinking into the pillows of your hospital bed, you accepted Inara’s bucket gratefully.

“I’m gonna go,” Inara said quietly. “I left work early yesterday, and now I’m going to be late today. You know I can’t do that kind of thing, with a new job. I just.. I just wanted to make sure you’re okay.”

“I’m fine,” you said softly, taking her hand in yours and squeezing gently. “Thank you for staying.”

“Do you want me to make him leave on the way?” She asked, jerking her chin in Endeavor’s general direction. You considered the offer, your head still swimming. After a moment, you shook your head. A movement you immediately regretted.

“No, it’s alright. If he wants to stay and talk, he can. I’ll go to sleep soon, anyway.”

“Are you coming home tonight?”

“I’ll have to talk to my doctor,” you admitted. “I only vaguely know how much damage I took. It’s not enough that you need to worry! I just don’t know if I should go home. I’ll text you when I decide, okay?”

“Okay... Take care.”

Inara left, Endeavor stepping the rest of the way into the room and to the side to let her through. You couldn’t see her face as she brushed past him, but you sincerely hoped she’d directed one of her furious scowls at him. She did mutter something, but you couldn’t quite hear it.

“I heard you were injured and came to check on you,” Endeavor finally said. He stalked forward, looming over you. He was in civilian clothes; a pair of jeans and a white tank top. You admired his shoulders for a moment before your head gave you another wave of nausea.

“Thanks for checking,” you mumbled, shifting so that you could sit up better. Before you could stop him, Endeavor had a hand on your lower back and the other wrapped around your right hand. He helped you readjust, then sank into the chair next to the bed.

“It wasn’t my intention to insult Doctor Currier,” he said firmly. You looked at him for a moment.

“Your intent doesn’t matter,” you said finally. “Whether you meant to or not, you hurt her. And that is unacceptable.”

He was still holding your hand, staring at it as if he’d never seen it before. He seemed to be inspecting the scars left behind by the surgery Recovery Girl had performed after Tremor destroyed your hand. There was a long silence, bordering on awkward, before he finally spoke again.

“I’ll try not to do it again,” he finally said. This was the softest you’d ever seen him, and for a moment you smiled faintly, enjoying this new view of him.

“Good,” you mumbled. His warmth made you sleepy, but the intensity of his stare as he looked at your hand made you faintly nervous. “Is something wrong with my hand?”

“I didn’t realize how bad the scarring was,” he admitted, finally letting go. He leaned back in his chair, looking around the hospital room with his arms crossed.

“It isn’t that bad,” you said, looking at your hand again. The scars were thin, silvered and even hard to see without close inspection.

“You’re a healer,” he said, as if that explained everything, “I didn’t expect you would have scars.”

“Scars are a natural part of healing,” you reminded him, somewhat amused. “Besides, Recovery Girl did most of the healing on my hand. I’m not much use with bones.”

“If those incompetent heroes in America had arrested Tremor like they were supposed to, you never would have gotten any scars.” He still wouldn’t look you in the eyes, but there was just a hint of guilt in the set of his shoulders and the crease on his brow.

Did he feel guilty about the damage Tremor had done? There wasn’t much he could have done about it, after all. But you’d been working with heroes for long enough to recognize the pain of someone who felt they hadn’t been fast enough. Shifting your weight again, you turned slightly so that you could look at him more closely.

“Scars are memories,” you said firmly. He finally looked your way, the crease on his brow deepening in confusion. “Some memories are all bad and some are all good, but most memories have a little bit of both.”

“I don’t understand what you’re saying,” he muttered, beginning to look annoyed.

“Well,” you held up your scarred hand, “take this one. Sure, it was scary to see Tremor in Japan, and yeah, it definitely hurt to get my hand crushed like that… But it led to your investigation, and that led to my spending more time with you.”

“Oh,” he muttered, faintly flustered. You grinned, enjoying the idea of making a man who was usually so cold to the people around him blush.

“As frustrating as you can be,” you said in a teasing voice, “I do enjoy spending time with you.”

“I… I was told you fought hard at USJ,” he changed the subject, clearly uncomfortable with the idea of admitting whether he felt the same. Your grin widened, and once again he seemed to have trouble looking you in the eye. “I didn’t realize you were so skilled in combat.”

“Your son did well, too,” you said with a shrug. You hadn’t actually seen the young Todoroki fight, but you knew he was one of the ones that had been separated from the rest. The teachers had been discussing it while you lay half-asleep waiting for an ambulance to take you to a hospital. The students who had been separated had been forced to fight.

“He will be a fine hero,” Endeavor said immediately. His eyes darkened for a moment. “Once he gets over this rebellious phase of his.”

“How is he?”

“I haven’t seen him yet,” Endeavor admitted. You stiffened, a mixture of confusion and anger washing out your earlier amusement.

“You... haven’t checked on him?”

“He’s training to be the next number one hero,” Endeavor said in a dismissive way. You considered smacking him, but didn’t quite have the energy. “He’ll need to get used to such scuffles.”

Scuffles .”

“Yes,” Endeavor said firmly. “Other than the one All Might fought, the villains in that attack were weaklings. It was little more than a scuffle.” You were sitting all the way up now, every inch of you crawling with anger.

“That ‘scuffle’ nearly killed three teachers and a student. That ‘scuffle’ is more than any child should have to endure.” Your voice was getting louder with every sentence, but you’d lost control of your temper again. “That ‘scuffle’ was scarring for me , let alone a child!”

“He’ll be a great hero,” Endeavor snapped, almost as angry as you. You wondered briefly how angry he had to be before he set himself on fire. “He doesn’t need coddling .”

“He’s fourteen , you ass!” You snapped. Endeavor stood, furious. His hair and beard were on fire, and  you were too angry to laugh about how absurd he looked for it.

“I don’t need you to tell me how to raise-”

“Enough!” Recovery girl entered the room, small and furious. “Yelling! In a hospital of all places! You should be ashamed of yourselves. And you, Endeavor! Yelling at a bedridden, injured hero! What is wrong with you?”

“I’m leaving ,” he snapped. You watched him go, biting back a dozen different angry retorts. Recovery Girl was right - raising your voice in a hospital was unacceptable. But you’d never been so furious at a man, not even Tremor.

“Can you believe him?” You growled, glaring as he walked away.

“I don’t care what he said or did,” Recovery Girl said firmly. “You need to rest, not start fights with pro heroes!”

“He deserves a smack on the mouth,” you grumbled, settling back into your bed. The bucket had fallen to the ground at some point. Recovery Girl handed it back to you before taking the chair Endeavor had left behind.

“You are nearly as bad as All Might and that Midoriya boy,” the old woman said sternly. You smiled apologetically. “Always injured, always overusing your quirk.”

“Thank you for your help, Doctor,” you said quietly. You were still furious with Endeavor, but Recovery Girl hadn’t done anything to warrant your sharp tongue. “And your patience.”

“You’re not to use that arm,” Recovery Girl ordered. “And I want you back in my office in three days, so that I can give you a proper healing. Your friend Inara told me you don’t take painkillers for any reason?”

“Yes, she was right. I’m easily addicted to artificial medications.”

“That’s good to know. And you’re lucky she came when she did, because I was about to give you something for that arm. Are you certain there’s nothing I can give you?”

“Yes,” you said firmly, wishing you could change the subject. “I’m certain, thank you.”

“Very well,” she huffed, looking at the chart in her hand. “Your chest took some damage, as well.”

“Nothing serious, I hope?” You asked, putting a hand to your ribs worriedly.

“You have half of an artificial ribcage,” Recovery Girl reminded you, “you shouldn’t really be fighting to begin with.”

“I know. It was part of why I quit in the first place.”

“But you came back.”

“I didn’t really intend to fight,” you said defensively. “Things just keep happening while I’m nearby.”

“...Of course. No patrols for you, though. Not until your arm is fully recovered. And that hand of yours. You irritated the newly healed bones. I have a glove designed to support your entire hand, so you don’t cause any stress fractures.”

You took Recovery Girl’s offered glove and laid back in bed. After another short discussion on what else was needed for you to make a full recovery, she turned the room’s lights off and left. You texted Inara so she wouldn’t worry when you don’t come home, and went to sleep.

--

Enji stood outside of the hospital room door, fighting to get his anger under control before he went out in public. He listened to the discussion about the extent of Silver’s injuries. When Recovery Girl mentioned Silver’s ribcage, he blinked, startled.

He’d known from the police reports and news clippings that Tremor had caused serious damage to Silver, an injury that had kept the doctor in the hospital for nearly three months. But Silver’s medical files were locked, even to his investigations. He’d never realized the full extent of that injury.

Only half of Silver’s ribcage was real bone. The other artificial - he’d heard of similar surgeries but never read into their success rates. It was said to be rare for a body to accept foreign material internally like that. He had no doubt that Silver’s quirk was the only reason the false bones hadn’t been rejected outright. It was entirely possible, he realized, that without the constant use of that quirk, those bones would be rejected even now.

And there was Silver’s insistence that he talk to Shoto. The boy was training to be a professional hero - he would see far worse in his future. What coddling did he need now? He was almost grown, after all. Thinking back to the kind of boy he was at that age, Enji decided it really was an overreaction. He would have been fine, and he was training Shoto to be even more resilient and powerful than himself.

When he got home that night, Enji sought his son out. Shoto looked up at his father, that cold glare he used lately in place. Enji considered asking if he was alright, if he needed anything… Before grunting dismissively. If the boy could glare at him like that, as if nothing had happened, then he was fine.

Chapter Text

“Why are you at work?” You leaned against the doorway to class 1A, your medical bag – now converted to a teachers’ bag – sliding to the floor next to you. At the front of the class, so covered in bandages that he looked like a mummy, was Aizawa. You’d seen his injuries quite clearly during the attack at USJ. No amount of healing quirks would get him ready to work so soon.

“Teaching,” he said drily. You raised an eyebrow at him, though you couldn’t see what face he was making under the bandages. “You should be at home, recovering your quirk.”

“…Fair point. I guess we’re both idiots, then.” You picked your bag back up, swallowing a grunt of pain as you bumped your cast against the doorframe. Aizawa had gotten the easier deal with his bandages – the children couldn’t see him make faces when he hurt himself. He went back to talking to the students as you came to the front of the room and set your bag on the table in front of him.

He was talking about the UA Sports Festival. It had gotten to be such a big deal in the past few years that it was almost regarded with the same excitement as the Olympics used to be. Looking around the room, you could see varying levels of excitement in the students’ faces. Some looked worried; others confident. One or two of them looked right on the edge of ecstatic. Once Aizawa finished his little speech, he turned to you.

“Are you here for Thirteen, then?” He asked shortly. “You’re early.”

“Yes, Thirteen was the smarter of us and chose not to work today.”

“I’ll let you get to it, then.” And he sank down into his corner of the room, wrapped in a bright yellow sleeping bag. You wondered for a moment how he got in and out with his arms bound like that, then gave yourself a mental shake and turned back to the class.

“As you heard, I’ll be covering Thirteen’s follow-up lesson from USJ.” You opened your bag as you spoke, working slowly and awkwardly with one hand to get out the notes Thirteen had given you. “Obviously, the lesson didn’t go according to plan. But we can discuss some theoretic scenarios, and go over some of the decisions that were made in the heat of the moment.”

“Teacher?” Uraraka had raised her hand, a look of concern on her face. You smiled, setting the notes down and nodding for her to continue. “Are you and the other teachers okay?”

“Well, Mr. Aizawa is right there,” you gestured toward the yellow caterpillar in the corner. His mummified face stuck out, but you couldn’t tell whether he was awake. “And Thirteen is finishing their recovery in the hospital. All Might was injured, as well, but he’s already mostly recovered. Recovery Girl is a fantastic healer, really.”

“But your arm…” You were touched by the girl’s concern, including the flicker of her eyes as she glanced at Aizawa.

“We’re professional heroes,” the local mummy said. So he was still awake, after all. “If we couldn’t handle something like that, we wouldn’t deserve the title. Injuries come with the job.”

“We’re mostly just happy to know that all of you are alright,” you assured her. “Let Mr. Aizawa know if you’re having any trouble dealing with anything, of course. He can help you, or coordinate a meeting between you and the school counselor, Mr. Inui - Hound Dog.”

“Yes, Teacher,” she said softly, finally lowering her hand.

“So, we’re going to discuss the various ways each of your quirks can be used in rescue scenarios…” you started, opening Thirteen’s notes.

The class seemed to be doing alright. None of them were showing any obvious signs of trauma, and the majority of them even seemed to look back at the events of USJ with excitement. Midoriya looked faintly worried throughout the day, but from what you’d seen of him, that was pretty standard.

Your lesson was fairly close to what Thirteen had planned; a couple of theoretic scenarios you offered got derailed by Bakugou insisting he would just blow things up, but otherwise the class seemed to know what to do.

Other than Bakugou, the young Todoroki was your other concern in class. Though you offered multiple scenarios where his fire could be extremely useful, he never offered it. It wasn’t that he wasn’t paying attention or didn’t want to participate; he offered solutions involving his ice. He just didn’t seem to want to use his fire. Thinking back, you remembered that his costume had covered the fiery half of his body in fake ice. Clearly, there was something going on between that boy and his father. It took all of your self-control not to ask outright.

You still wanted to schedule a lesson on emergency first aid, but that would have to wait. You ended the class by reminding them to talk to Aizawa or any of the other teachers if they were having any issues after USJ.

When Aizawa stood to take back over, you put a hand on his shoulder and slipped a finger between bandages to send a rush of healing energy into him. He chastised you for using your quirk when you were running on empty, but you could see some of the tension leave his shoulders. Whether he wanted to admit it or not, he clearly appreciated your help.

--

Enji was surprised to hear that Silver was waiting for him in the exercise room for their usual appointment. Though he hadn’t mentioned it or asked, he’d assumed that the appointment would be cancelled. Silver had been badly injured, as well as using absolutely all of their quirk.

“I do enjoy spending time with you,” Silver had said. There had been amusement in their face as they spoke, as if they were teasing him, but Enji couldn’t get that sentence out of his head. What did it mean? Did Silver enjoy working with him in a professional manner? They’d mentioned multiple times how interesting his quirk could be.

Or was it more than that? Was Silver getting as attached to Enji as he was to them? Was he even getting attached, or was this some temporary infatuation simply because the healing quirk felt so good?

He’d never really been in love. Like any other adolescent boy, he’d imagined himself with a beautiful spouse. He’d even had a few crushes, though looking back on them now he was embarrassed to admit who they were. His marriage with Rei had been one of convenience more than anything else, and it had ended with Shoto in the hospital and a quiet, bitter divorce. He’d never loved her; he’d used her.

And now Silver was on his mind. Every time he didn’t have something to focus on, that face would appear. The hand with its scars, the way they moved with that chain. He’d never spent so much time thinking of anyone else. Not even Shoto, when he was planning the boy’s rise in the hero world.

And Shoto. Shoto wasn’t made of glass; he was the next Endeavor, stronger. Better. His quirk wouldn’t fry him from the inside out every time he used it in a fight. He didn’t need Enji to hold his hand after a little fight in USJ. But Silver had insisted – even gotten angry about it – that Enji check on him.

A wave of worry hit Enji when he remembered that he’d chosen not to talk to the boy when he got home. He squashed that immediately – Silver wasn’t the boy’s parent. They weren’t even his homeroom teacher, whose job it was to counsel the students. Enji didn’t need Silver telling him how to raise his own son.

He squared his shoulders, realizing he was just outside of the exercise room, with Silver on the other side of the door. If Silver asked about Shoto, Enji decided, he would say the exact same thing he’d said yesterday.

Silver was on the bench press, laid back as if they were going to start doing presses. Instead, their eyes were closed, chest rising and falling in slow, even breaths. Enji approached quietly, curious if they’d fallen asleep. Maybe he could offer one of those spare rooms again… No, Silver wasn’t injured this time. There was no way he could justify them staying another night.

God, he really was getting pathetic about this, wasn’t he?

He was almost even with Silver’s head when they sat up with a start, looking around the room with silver-tinted eyes. Silver even reached for the chain around their waist, as if they were going to have to fight someone.

“Good afternoon,” Enji said lamely.

“Oh,” Silver muttered, blinking. The silver was gone from their eyes, and he could see shadows under them. Clearly, Silver hadn’t slept well the night before. “Good afternoon.”

“I wasn’t expecting you to come in today,” Enji said, settling himself down on another piece of equipment nearby. It was nice to sit, after a long day in the field. “You should be resting.”

“Probably,” Silver admitted with a shrug, “but I don’t like sitting around doing nothing.”

“Me, either,” Enji admitted.

Silver smiled again, and Enji almost smiled back.

Almost.

--

You were packing up your medical bag – you were going to need a new bag, so you didn’t have to empty it out between school and your appointments with Endeavor – when you checked your phone and realized that Inara hadn’t answered your last text. It wasn’t like her to stay so quiet, so you paused in packing your bag and called her. You and Endeavor had shifted to his little conference room at the beginning of the exam, and he paused in his paperwork to look up questioningly.

Inara didn’t pick up.

Cursing under your breath, you went back to packing your bags. It was hard to work with just one hand, but you managed to shove everything in the bag and throw it over your shoulder quickly enough.

“Is everything alright?” Endeavor asked, setting his paperwork down.

“Inara isn’t answering her phone,” you said, looking around the room to make sure you didn’t forget anything.

“Do you think she’s in danger?” He was standing already, moving like he was going to go be a hero somewhere. You shook your head, waving for him to sit back down.

“She didn’t take USJ well,” you said, trying not to directly imply that this was his fault. It kind of was, with what he’d said, but he’d already explained that he didn’t mean it that way. No need for him to feel guilty about it. “She’s probably just gone somewhere quiet to think, and turned off her phone. I’ll look around for her.”

“If you need any help…” he offered, a crease between his eyebrows.

“I’ll let you know,” you said firmly.

“Good night, Doctor,” he said as you walked away. You paused, looking back over your shoulder at him with a smile.

“Good night, Endeavor.” You paused – he had a look on his face, like he wanted to say something else.

“…Please call me Enji.” There was the tiniest hint of a blush on the tips of his ears. If you hadn’t been on the edge of blushing, as well, you would have laughed at his embarrassment. As it was, you couldn’t justify your own faint blush. It was just a first name, nothing serious.

“Then please call me (F/N). Good night, Enji.” It was nice to use his name.

“Good night, (F/N).” It was better, hearing him use yours.

Chapter Text

Inara still wasn’t home when you woke the next morning. You passed through the working day in a haze, teaching your classes with a robotic voice and a dozen half-formed thoughts dancing through your head. Between classes, you asked the other teachers who had Inara’s number whether they’d heard from her. During your lunch break, you called her office; apparently, she’d told them she wasn’t feeling well and wouldn’t be in.

By the time your work day ended, the combination of your scattered sleep from nightmares and the looming worry you felt for your best friend had you wandering random streets in a fuzzy daze. You almost didn’t hear your phone going off; in fact, if it hadn’t also been buzzing in your pocket, you might not have answered at all.

“I found Doctor Currier,” Enji’s voice was strained, as if he were caught in some awkward conversation or biting back his anger. Judging by his general personality, you assumed the latter.

“Where is she? I’m near a train station, I’ll come right away!”

“I should clarify,” he said, a hint of annoyance in his voice, “that I haven’t seen her, myself. I’m with a few of your American friends, and they tell me she is with them. In their hotel room, apparently.” The note of disapproval in his voice was clear. You thought you heard an annoyed sigh on the other end of the phone call.

“Okay, I’ll come to you, then. Where are you?”

It actually took less time to walk than it would have to take the train; you were only three blocks from where Enji had found a group of American pro heroes. As you approached, partially hidden in a crowd of shoppers, you took an inventory of the Americans surrounding Enji.

Dragontooth, in his absurd, iridescent armor armor drawing the attention of passersby. Immature, but kind. Next to him was a tall man with snowy white wings, his equally bright white outfit nearly as blinding as Dragontooth’s; Heavenly Owl. You ducked into a nearby shop, bracing yourself. If Heavenly Owl was here, that meant-

“Silver,” the voice was almost certainly meant to sound cool, even suave. Instead it was ingratiating, almost whiny. You closed your eyes and took a deep breath before turning around.

“Grey Savior.”

“You’re looking worse than when I saw you last,” he noted. Savior spoke in English, not surprising but somewhat jarring after spending so long in Japan. He was just below average height, and skinnier than most professional heroes could afford to be. His outfit was a long grey robe, with the pointed hat of a wizard. Running across his chest like the bullet vest Chewbacca wore was a long line of syringes. Your nose wrinkled just looking at them.

“You look exactly the same,” you mumbled. You stepped back out of the little store, purposely turning your back on him. Grey Savior had been sued more than once for when and how he used those needles. You’d never approved of his methods, and liked his personality even less.

“Silver!” Dragontooth’s greeting was much louder, and considerably more friendly. You smiled as he approached, and let out a small yelp as he grabbed you by the hips and lifted you in the air. It seemed to be his substitute for an excited hug, his eyes on your broken arm to make sure he didn't bump it.

“Hey, Pavak,” you said, grinning. He set you down and stepped back, a hand on each of your shoulders, and gave you an appraising look. 

“You’ve got new scars, (F/N).”

“Yeah. It’s been busy here in Japan.”

“I thought you had retired,” Heavenly Owl said, his voice just as deep and sleepy as you remembered. You’d always thought he should record himself reading bedtime stories to put children to sleep. Dragontooth let go of your shoulders, throwing an arm around Owl’s instead.

“I did. I was going to stay retired, but Tremor showed back up.”

“I read about him online,” Savior said, letting himself fall into a chair nearby. The table he sat at had half-finished plates; you had to assume you were interrupting an early dinner. “I read he got arrested this time, instead of running away like last time.”

“Yes,” Enji said. He stood nearby, looking strangely out of place despite being surrounded by other pro heroes. His Japanese accent was strong, but he spoke slowly to make sure he could be understood. “That man was arrested and will not be released any time soon.”

“Want to join us, (F/N)?” Dragontooth - Pavak - asked cheerfully. You scratched the side of your nose, considering your options.

“Inara is okay?”

“She’s coming back to America with us,” Grey Savior said dismissively. You eyed him for a moment - he was looking at his sandwich instead of you - and shrugged.

“I’d like to confirm that with her, thanks all the same. Besides, you didn’t answer my question.”

“She’s fine,” Heavenly Owl said calmly. He made eye contact where his friend hadn’t. The unnerving part was that he had turned so much that his back was almost to you. Just because he could turn his neck almost 360 degrees didn’t mean he should turn it that far.

“Silver,” Enji said, glancing between the men before looking back at you. His eyes had lingered just a little too long on Dragontooth, and you got the tiniest hint of jealousy. As if sensing Endeavor’s discomfort, Dragontooth followed his friends to their table, taking his seat, as well. He stuck a foot out, pushing a chair out in a clear invitation for you to sit. You nodded before turning back to Enji.

“Thank you for finding them for me, Enji,” you said, speaking in Japanese and smiling at him.

“...You’re welcome,” he said shortly, looking away. “I need to get back to my patrol.”

“Okay. I’ll see you around, then.”

“Yeah.”

You watched him go, lighting up the street with his flaming costume as the sun set, and settled into the fourth seat at the table. A waitress approached, asking in broken English what you’d like to order. You answered in Japanese, smiling at the obvious relief in her face when you did.

“So Ina wants to go back to America,” you said, turning to the boys you’d earned your professional hero license with. Grey Savior had an oversized bite in his mouth, part of a tomato dangling from his lips. Heavenly Owl ate with careful grace, though it was clear that the chopsticks in his hand were not his usual utensils. Dragontooth, always instinctively touching people he liked, put a hand on your wrist as he answered.

--

Enji hadn’t been actively looking for Dr. Curiel. Silver had seemed worried, but not panicked, so he’d let it go. Curiel could take care of herself, even if her quirk was less than useful. But he did keep an eye out for her. He caught himself doing a double-take any time he saw a woman with dark skin, or a head of hair in those tiny braids Curel had.

Normally, he would have ignored a group of heroes he didn’t recognize off-hand, assuming they were new or only visiting the city. But this group was loud, and clearly foreign; they looked so painfully out of place that they were drawing a crowd. Their voices were louder than usual and they spoke so quickly in English that he almost couldn’t understand them. But there was one thing he could understand - the name Inara .

The one who introduced himself as Dragontooth was so painfully colorful and cheerful that Enji was immediately reminded of his rival, All Might. The man had brown skin and dark hair and seemed to find it necessary to be touching at least one person at all times. Heavenly Owl, whose clothes, wings, skin and even hair were entirely too white but whose personality was considerably easier to handle, was only mildly unnerving. His Japanese was broken and clearly not something he learned in a classroom. When Enji realized how badly these American spoke Japanese, he felt slightly less embarrassed by his own broken but passable English.

Waiting for Silver to arrive had been almost painful. Dragontooth wanted to chat, but he still spoke so quickly in English that Enji could barely understand him. He didn’t speak Japanese at all. Heavenly Owl spent most of those ten awkward minutes trying to look like he knew how to hold chopsticks. And the third, who Enji had been told was called Grey Savior, wandered off almost immediately.

Silver’s open familiarity - the smile as Dragontooth picked them up like a doll - set Enji’s teeth on edge. He regretted not researching more of Silver’s American friends and immediately regretted regretting it - Silver wouldn’t approve, and he knew it. Gritting his teeth, he glanced back over his shoulder as he left, to see Dragontooth holding Silver’s hand across the table.

Biting back a surge of jealousy - and wishing he could claim that the feeling was literally anything else - Enji forced himself to return his focus to his patrol. Silver was a grown adult, and beyond that stupid decision of his to kiss them, their relationship had been nothing but professional. He had no right to be jealous.

When he rounded the corner, he glanced back again. Silver’s head was tilted back as they laughed at something that Dragontooth must have said.

--

Little Pavak had grown up. You remembered him from your time training to become a professional hero; you were considerably older than him, and he’d looked to you like a parental figure almost from day one. He knew everything there was about being a hero, but nothing about being an adult. He would teach you how to defend yourself in hand-to-hand combat and follow up with questions about how to invest wisely in the stock market. His endless smiles and constant cheesy jokes reminded you of All Might. Or maybe All Might had always reminded you of Dragontooth.

Pavak had always kept in touch with Inara, and apparently checked up on you once and a while through her. He was a good kid, and a decent friend, and you felt a pang of guilt when you realized how cold it had been of you to cut him off as thoroughly as you had. He didn’t seem to hold a grudge, though.

Heavenly Owl and Grey Savior kept to themselves as you and Pavak caught up on the last several years of your lives, only occasionally adding commentary to Pavak’s stories. Owl had always been the most mature of your graduating class, and his unwavering friendship with Savior had been strange but somewhat touching. Though you couldn’t bring yourself to like Savior, you couldn’t hate him, either. He was coarse and rude but ultimately a good kid.

When the four of you had finally finished your early dinner, Pavak threw an arm around your shoulders and led you back toward the group’s hotel room.

“It seems a little excessive to visit Japan just for the sake of an interview,” you noted, trying to ignore the stares of passersby as the four of you wandered down the street together.

“Well, it’s a vacation, too. My PR team thought it would be good for me to be seen doing something other than hero work, and they also thought I should expand my reputation to another country. Japan’s laws on professional heroism are similar enough to America’s that they didn’t have to worry about me accidentally getting in trouble because I didn’t do my research ahead of time.”

“I’m glad your PR team knows you so well,” you said, amused. He laughed outright.

“Research has never been my strong point. I like your new costume, by the way! It’s a good color combination for you.”

“Thanks. Inara got it for me, actually. She helped a few of the other teachers at the school I work at to design it, too.” You tugged at the jacket, pleased to hear that the color looked good on you. It had made you self-conscious at first, but you were beginning to like it more every day.

“The color is pretty close to that Endeavor guy who called you earlier,” Pavak said, giving you a sly look out of the corner of his eye. You felt a blush rising on your cheeks and cleared your throat.

“I may have gotten drunk and described him as… Well, I won’t repeat it, but he is attractive, after all.” You cleared your throat again, blushing some more. “Anyway, Inara probably chose the colors based on his as a joke. I’m just glad she didn’t give me a skin-tight suit that looked just like his. I don’t think I could handle that.”

“You’d look incredible in it,” Pavak said, grinning. You put your hand over your face, more embarrassed than you’d been in a while.

“Can we please change the subject?”

“Sure,” he said, laughing. “We’re here, anyway.”

Chapter Text

You had forgotten how bad Soothsayer could be with incense when she meditated until Dragontooth opened the door and a cloud of sickly sweet smoke escaped. You grimaced and put a hand over your face, wishing you could shut off your sense of smell. It was like Soothsayer had set an entire bushel of incense on fire, and not a single stick in the cluster was the same scent as the one next to it. Taking a deep breath in preparation, you stepped into the room.

Soothsayer sat in the middle of the floor on a purple shag rug that you knew she'd brought with her from America. She wore a dozen or more thin shawls, in six different colors and carefully arranged to make her look as mystical as possible. She blinked up at the open door with sleepy green eyes and a smug little smile. Next to her was Inara, sitting awkwardly just to the side of the shag rug in an oversized t-shirt tucked haphazardly into her skinny jeans, micro braids pulled into a loose ponytail at the base of her neck. Her favorite black boots were on the floor beside the door, with a pair of beat up red slippers next to them. Inara's eyes were closed tightly, and you could see the tension in her shoulders as she leaned slightly away, as if afraid you would start yelling immediately.

"Hey, Ina," you said quietly, still speaking English. One of Inara's eyes opened slightly, and she peeked nervously at you from her place on the floor.

"Hey," she answered, looking guiltily up at you.

"Please close the door, friends," Soothsayer's voice was low and melodic, and you always wondered how much time she spent practicing it. You heard the door shut behind you as you walked forward and sank to the floor in front of Inara, ignoring Soothsayer.

"I heard you were thinking about going back to America," you said, sitting on your knees with your hands folded in front of you. "Where'd that come from?"

"Well, I thought I might be able to improve my quirk a bit more, in America." Inara said, staring down at her lap.

"You don't need to improve your quirk, Inara," you said seriously.

"What she needs is irrelevant, Silver. Inara wishes to improve her quirk, and so I will help her to improve her quirk. A true friend would not interfere with her wishes." Soothsayer was still speaking in that sing-song voice, and it took all of your self control not to glare at her now.

"I didn't say I would stop you from improving your quirk, Inara," you said, pretending it had been Inara speaking to you instead of Soothsayer. "And I won't stop you if you want to go back to America. I was just worried, you know? You didn't answer your phone, and you called in sick from work."

"I was meditating," Inara said, a bit defensively. "Soothsayer says I can't let anything distract me when I'm meditating."

"I called you nearly six hours ago, Inara," you said, trying not to sound as annoyed as you were. "You could have called back. Or texted me."

"She did not need the distraction. We have been hard at work improving Inara's quirk nonstop since she first came to me." Soothsayer clearly didn't approve of you ignoring her.

"This is a two person conversation, Soothsayer," you said coldly. Inara's eyes suddenly snapped up to meet yours, and there was a hint of anger in them.

"You don't need to be rude, you know," she said. You felt your eyebrow twitch.

"What I need is irrelevant," you said, feeling the corner of your lips turn up in a tiny grin. The anger in Inara's shoulders seemed to lessen, and you saw a glimmer of amusement in her eyes. "I wish to be rude, you see, and a true friend wouldn't interfere with that wish."

"Excuse me?" Soothsayer's sing-song voice was gone, replaced by a slightly higher-pitched, clearly angry Southern American drawl.

"It's been a while, Soothsayer," you said, finally turning to speak to her. You couldn't stand the woman's fake persona, but you didn't mind speaking to her when she was actually being a human. "How have you been?"

"I saw you coming a mile out, you know," she snapped, shifting her weight so she could stand up. Inara was hunched over, trying not to laugh out loud at the sudden change in personality.

"I'm sure you did," you said drily, standing as well. "I was a little bit worried when I walked in that you'd been replaced with one of those quarter fortune machines come to life."

"You've always been so rude!" Soothsayer snapped, her Southern accent getting worse. "Y'all used to think my fortune teller voice was fun!"

"For a few minutes at a time, Audrey, but you keep that nonsense up for long enough and it'll annoy the most patient person in the world. And I've never been a patient person." You frowned down at her - she was incredibly short, and when the shawl around her head slipped, some of her strawberry blonde hair poked out.

"Nonsense? It isn't nonsense! I can see the future, I need to look the part!" Inara let out a snort of laughter, still sitting cross-legged in front of you. "Don't laugh, Inara! I'm serious - d'you really think people'll take me serious if I walk up lookin' like a southern hick?"

"Audrey," Inara managed between giggles, "we went to middle school together. We wouldn't take you seriously whether you looked the part or not."

"Since when do you have a Southern accent, Soothsayer?" Dragontooth asked from behind you. You turned to look at the men still standing by the door. 

"Are you saying she's kept this charade up every time the two of you have spoken?" You asked, dumbfounded. You'd never been much of an actor, but this seemed.. excessive, even for Audrey.

"Charade? (Y/N), it isn't a charade! It's who I am!"

"You grew up on a pig farm, Audrey!" Inara said, laughing outright now.

--

The conversation inside Audrey’s hotel room didn’t last for more than fifteen minutes before Heavenly Owl politely suggested ‘getting some air’. His suggestion was met with obvious relief by everyone in the room as the scent of incense left your head pounding.

Stepping outside of the hotel, you let Audrey take the lead, arm-in-arm with Dragontooth. Inara walked beside you, still obviously feeling guilty about not calling back. Heavenly Owl and Grey Savior walked a few feet behind, Savior explaining the newest level of his video game to a patiently listening Owl.

“Do you really want to go back to America?” You asked Inara quietly, elbowing her gently in the side.

“No,” she admitted. “I’ve made plenty of friends here. And there’s this pro hero who works a few doors down from me... “

“Oh?” You prompted, raising an eyebrow.

“It’s not like that!” Inara said immediately, waving her hands dismissively. She paused for a second, a thoughtful look on her face. When she turned back to you, there was an evil glint in her eye. “At least, not yet.”

“You’re gonna chase this poor hero till they fall for you, aren’t you?” You asked, smirking. Inara laughed.

“He’s gonna suffer so much,” she said gleefully.

“So why tell the others you were coming back with them?” You asked quietly.

“I’m not sure.. I might have just been - I dunno - frustrated? I didn’t really think about it, I just said it.”

“Ah,” you said, nodding, “and then you weren’t sure how to take it back?”

“Yeah,” she admitted.

“Well, you can always tell them I convinced you to stay.”

“I knew you’d say that,” Audrey said over her shoulder. She was wearing normal clothes now, including bedazzled boots and a denim vest. You rolled your eyes at her, and she stuck her tongue out in response.

“Hello again!” Dragontooth called suddenly, waving his entire arm to get someone’s attention. You looked in the direction your colorful friend was waving and saw Enji, his usual scowl in place.

“Hello,” he said shortly. He glanced at everyone in the crowd, pausing on you for a moment before turning to Inara. “Doctor Curiel. It’s good to know that you are well. Silver was concerned.”

“Y-yeah,” Inara managed, looking down, “I’m fine. Thanks.”

“You still on patrol, Fire-Guy?” Grey Savior asked, shoving his portable game in the pocket of his robes.

“I was just finishing it,” Enji said shortly. “You may call me Endeavor.”

“Too hard to remember,” Savior said, shrugging. You scowled at him.

“It’s an English word, you ass.”

“You need to go with Endeavor,” Inara said suddenly, pulling on your arm. You turned to look at her, surprised to see her eyes glittering and gold.

“Okay,” you said instantly. “Are we going back to his office?”

“No,” Inara said immediately.

“I was going straight home,” Endeavor said. He no longer looked annoyed - like a switch had been flipped, the man had gone from grumpy to business in an instant. “Is that where Silver and I need to go?”

“Yes,” Inara said firmly. “Keep asking questions.”

“Is Enji in danger?” You asked.

“No.”

“Is my family in danger?” He stepped forward, the heat of his flames making the others step back.

“Not the whole family,” Inara said, looking faintly confused.

“Shoto?” Enji asked. He visibly relaxed when Inara shook her head ‘no’.

“It doesn’t matter who,” you reminded him. “It matters how bad. How bad is it, Ina?”

“I can’t tell,” she admitted. “I think the fact that you’ve already decided to go is messing up my readings.”

“Okay,” you said, shrugging. “I just hope it isn’t too bad - I’m still pretty tired from USJ.”

“I can help with that!” Savior announced proudly. He marched forward, already pulling a needle out of his own arm. His quirk gave him the ability to turn his own blood into any chemical he knew the makeup of, from poisons to medicines, and even vaccines. You took a step back as he approached with the syringe.

“Don’t you dare-”

Chapter Text

Enji reacted faster than you or Inara could; before that needle was within six inches of your skin, a massive blue-gloved hand was wrapped around Grey Savior's wrist. The American hero yelped as Enji literally lifted him by the wrist, effectively getting the needle so far away that when it dropped from loose fingers, it landed on the pavement next to Heavenly Owl.

"What happened?" Dragontooth asked. Soothsayer was gone.

"This fool-" Enji growled, shaking Savior a little.

"He tried to shoot me up with something," you explained, giving Dragontooth an apologetic look. "Enji, you can let him go. Really."

"He should be arrested." The flames that decorated Enji's outfit seemed to be bigger than usual. You reached out, putting a hand on his outstretched arm.

"What he was doing is legal, in America. He's an idiot, not a villain, Enji. Let him go." You kept your hand on his arm until he'd grudgingly lowered Savior to the ground.

"What the fuck is your problem?" Savior asked, cradling his arm and backing up. Heavenly Owl put a hand on his friend's shoulder, handing back the needle he'd picked up from the ground. The pale man was frowning, but didn't seem surprised or particularly angry about Enji's reaction.

"You should have asked if (F/N) wanted a shot, before pulling a needle out like that!" Inara was downright furious, her eyes no longer golden. "Using your needles on villains is one thing-"

"Sketchy at best," you muttered.

"-but using them against friends? What were you going to do, anyway?"

"It's a quirk enhancer!" The way Savior was waving that needle around made you nervous. Without thinking about it, you stepped closer to Enji, comforted by the warmth he gave off. Taking a deep breath, you got your anger under control before speaking.

"Listen, Savior, I really don't like drugs. Not the fun kind, and not the medical kind. They mess with my quirk, is all. And Enji knows that, so he stopped you from - well, I appreciate what you were trying to do, anyway. Just... Don't do it again. I'm not interested in enhancing my quirk, thanks all the same."

"What are you so worried about? This version of trigger is non-addictive, and only barely affects quirks. For quirks like yours, where energy is stored in the body, it replenishes your supply. It'd get you well enough to help Fire-guy's family or whatever you have to do."

"It's not- that isn't the point! I didn't want a shot, but you didn't even ask first!"

"Whatever. I was just trying to help."

"Okay. Fine. I don't have time to explain, anyway. Let's go, Enji. Are you okay, Inara? I don't want to ditch you."

"I'm fine," Inara said, smiling at you. "I wanna catch up more with Audrey, anyway. And Pavak. And maybe I can get the problem through that thick skull Savior has."

"Don't waste your breath," Soothsayer had reappeared, an ice pack in hand. "Heavenly Owl is the only one who can get through to Savior, and he'll do that tonight when the brat has cooled off."

"You knew he was gonna hurt me and went off to get an ice pack instead of stopping him?" Savior was clearly offended, though he accepted the ice pack anyway. Audrey just shrugged.

"You're one of those people who have to learn things the hard way."

"I'm surrounded by assholes," Savior whined. He turned, stomping back toward the hotel you'd all just left. Heavenly Owl stayed behind for a moment.

"You overreacted," the winged hero said, standing directly in front of Enji. You stood between the two, feeling short and a little nervous. Heavenly Owl wouldn't do well against Enji's flames, and you didn't have the energy to heal them if they started fighting.

"He shouldn't have tried to force himself on Silver," Enji said, refusing to back down. In fact, he stepped closer, and for a moment you felt even smaller.

"That is true," Heavenly Owl said calmly. He didn't seem even remotely nervous about the fire drifting from Enji's shoulders. "But your reaction was beyond necessity."

"Okay, okay," Inara said, putting a hand on Owl's shoulder. "I think Endeavor gets the point. And you get the point. And I really don't want to pick up the pieces if you two fight. Let's talk about it later, okay?"

"Let's," you agreed, turning around. Enji was very close. You put a hand on his bicep, gently pulling him away from Owl. After a moment, he grunted and backed down, turning to follow you.

--

Enji followed Silver for a block and a half before he realized they were going the wrong way. Silver laughed when he told them, and suggested they get a taxi. Instead, he called for one of his side-kicks to bring a car around to meet them. While they waited, he stood next to Silver, keeping his mouth shut and trying not to be obviously furious. That Grey Savior brat had been so far out of line that for a moment he'd wanted to break something.

"Thanks for stopping him," Silver said suddenly, as if they'd heard Enji's thoughts.

"He needed to be stopped," he grunted. "You shouldn't have needed to explain yourself."

"I know," Silver said, shrugging. "But he really did mean well. I can't blame him for trying to solve a problem."

"He should be held accountable for trying to solve it like that."

"Yeah," Silver agreed, "he should."

"Then why did you stop me?"

"Because being thrown in jail isn't the same as being held accountable." Silver was watching people walk by across the street, frowning. "Because trying to throw another pro hero in prison when he technically didn't break the law would look bad for you."

"You were protecting my image."

"And his. And mine, and everyone else's there. You don't think sometimes, when you're angry, you know that?"

Enji paused, staring at Silver for a long moment. The street lights were coming on, and they made Silver's hair shine. For the first time, he noticed that the blue of Silver's coat was almost the same as the blue of his costume. That they'd announced his anger issues so bluntly, and calmly, was a shock. He was surprised to find that the words actually hurt. Years ago, he probably would have responded to something like that with angry blustering or by stomping away. But today, for some reason, all Enji could think about was his ex-wife's words when he asked why she'd hurt their son.

The car arrived before Enji could formulate an appropriate answer to Silver's comment. They climbed in, and he turned his attention to the paperwork his side-kick handed him.

"Take us home," Enji said shortly.

"Where do you live, Silver?" Burnin, one of his more promising side-kicks, asked cheerfully from her place in the front passenger seat.

"Oh, uh-" Silver started, looking between Burnin and Enji.

"Silver is coming home with me," Enji grunted, flipping the page he'd been reading over. A moment of absolute silence made him look up. Burnin was turned halfway around in her seat, staring at Enji with wide eyes. The driver, who he didn't know, had his head straight forward, though there was a stiffness in his shoulders that said he was listening closely. Silver sat in their seat, refusing to look at Enji or Burnin. Realizing what he'd said and how it sounded, Enji cleared his throat, feeling a flush rising in his neck. "I need Silver's services-"

"Stop talking," Silver interrupted, passing a hand over their eyes. "Please, stop talking."

"I'm... not gonna ask," Burnin said, wisely turning back around. "Uh, you heard Boss, then. To his house."

--

You kept your mouth shut and your eyes out of the window for the rest of the ride, trying not to think about the rumors that would be flying around Enji's agency by morning. Noticing the reflection of his side-kick's phone in the window, you winced. The rumors would probably be going around before the sun had fully set.

Enji's house was massive - as you'd expected - and gorgeous. It was in the old Japanese style, complete with the little entryway where you had to take your shoes off. Following him inside, you looked around as the two of you walked. It wasn't quite as ostentatious as you might have imagined, the decor seeming to focus more on function than fashion. Not far inside, the two of you passed another gym not unlike the one at his agency. In one of the nearby rooms, the sound getting louder as you approached, you could hear someone humming as they worked.

The humming was cut off with the crashing sound of a metal pot on hardwood flooring and a loud gasp. Enji, who was still trying to read his paperwork and walk at the same time, snapped to attention. His leisurely walk became a brisk stride that was hard to keep up with as he charged toward the sound. Rounding a corner behind him, you found the source of the trouble, and the reason Inara had sent you home with Enji.

A young woman, hair white with red streaks, was sitting awkwardly on the ground, the contents of her cooking splattered all over the floor. A knife was on the ground next to her, and she was staring blankly at the massive gash in her arm. You had to assume that the knife had fallen with the pot, and sliced open her arm. Enji stood in the doorway, seeming to consider his options. The girl looked up, her glasses askew, and you saw some of Enji's features in the shape of her face; his daughter, then. There was a flash of fear on her face before she looked away, eyes meeting yours. Blinking, she seemed to gather herself before letting out a fake-sounding giggle.

"Oops," she said, clearly trying not to look panicked. You didn't take the time to consider why her initial reaction was fear, though the image was stuck in the back of your head.

"Well," you said, keeping your voice calm and cheerful. "That's one way to meet someone new."

Some people panicked at the sight of blood, and you'd long since learned to sound calm and cheerful in emergencies. People fed off of the energy of the ones around them; if you panicked, she likely would too. The young woman didn't fall apart, instead returning your cheer with another little giggle. Her other hand wrapped around the cut, trying to stem the blood as it flowed. You could tell it hadn't hit any major arteries, but she was still bleeding more than you liked.

"I'm Doctor (L/N), or Silver if you prefer," you introduced yourself, stepping around Enji until you could bow politely to her.

"H-hello, Doctor," she managed. "My name is Fuyumi."

"My friend has a future-sight quirk, and she told Mr. Todoroki and I that I should accompany him home today. Now I see why. Do you mind if I look at that cut?"