Izuku was just supposed to be getting some groceries for the dorms.
No big deal.
Class 1-A was running low on food and he just happened to be the first one who offered to go. He'd taken off, hiked over to the grocery store, and used the money Aizawa had left for them to buy anything needed. It hadn't taken long at all.
On his way back to the dorms, he didn't realize he was up for any kind of trouble…
That was, until he heard the screams.
"Help! Somebody, help, I'm being robbed!"
Izuku felt his eyes widen. He knew he wasn't in the safest part of the city right now, and this late at night there were sure to be things like this going on. He was never one to ignore a cry for help, but a part of him knew that the police or a pro-hero would be best at handling this. He wasn't even allowed to use his quirk to harm people.
But how much time was left? He couldn't just stand here while someone else was suffering.
Without thinking any longer, he dropped his bags of groceries and turned on One For All before springing into action. In blinding speed, he felt himself turn this way and that in the direction of the screams before he was suddenly led into in a dark alleyway, panting as he came to a complete stop. He looked around desperately for the woman he'd heard.
...and then he saw her.
The masked man had already grabbed her purse and had thrown her to the ground, a knife poised in his hand as he prepared to strike. Izuku's eyes widened as he realized what was about to happen.
"NO!" he yelled, and felt One For All light up his body as he raced forward, his legs moving before he could think. "DON'T HURT HER!"
Surprised, the robber looked up. He obviously hadn't prepared for anyone else to come to the woman's rescue, and barely had time to react as Izuku charged towards him. "Stay away from her!" he shouted, and his arm lit up even more as he prepared to strike.
The split second before he hit the robber and as the robber prepared his defense was one Izuku would never forget. As he ripped across the pavement, he was puzzled when suddenly a sharp pain erupted in his gut. But he barely had time to think about it before he smashed into the robber. The force of One For All instantly threw the villain aside and his head cracked against the pavement, knocking him unconscious.
At least the robber hadn't had any time to use his quirk.
Izuku panted heavily as he skid to a stop, trying to keep sense of what he had just done.
He'd injured someone with his quirk… and that was breaking the law. The woman had seen everything that had happened, and once the robber finally woke up, they were both sure to tell the police what had happened.
This was bad.
"...who… who are you?"
Blinking, Izuku turned around and saw that the woman he'd just rescued had stood herself up by now, and was running a hand through her brown hair.
She still looked spooked from the ordeal. "You saved me!"
Yes, that was also true, Izuku considered. He had saved someone, so he might get off with a light warning. Might. But still - if he was found out, it would be marked down on his permanent file… and what hero agency would want to train some kid who had broken the law? No, no, no, this couldn't get out!
"I'm, uh…" He fumbled for a response, the pain in his stomach suddenly coming back. He'd forgotten about it momentarily, but now it was coming back to him in a vengeance. "I'm nobody."
The woman looked surprised and opened her mouth to protest before closing it. Her eyes suddenly widened and she pointed towards his stomach with a shaky finger. "You're bleeding!" she gasped. "You're hurt!"
Izuku was a little taken aback at this. So that was what the pain was? Had the robber someone gotten him with his knife in their fight? He looked down at his stomach, and slightly tensed when he saw the tear in his sweatshirt's fabric that made way for a line of blood to soak through.
Okay. He couldn't panic now, right? He had to think through this cooly and rationally as a real hero would.
He fumbled for his phone which was tucked away in his pocket, and somehow managed to shakily dial in the police's number. He held it up to his ear as the woman worriedly watched. A few rings and then, "Hello, what's your emergency?"
"There was just a robbery stopped in an alleyway," Izuku managed out, pressing a hand against his stinging abdomen. "The victim is safe, but the robber was knocked out and needs to be taken away…" Izuku gave a rough description of his location, as he was in an unfamiliar part of town. Thankfully, the police seemed to understand.
"We'll be there right away, sir. Would you mind staying on the line with us?"
No! Now, this was bad. If they saw him, they'd know he'd used his quirk!
He closed his eyes. "Sorry, I have to go."
"Sir? Sir, can we have a name, please? Sir?"
Unable to keep talking, Izuku hung up, sighing as he opened his eyes. The woman was staring at him with evident concern, but she hadn't yet approached. "What's going on?"
"The police will be here soon to get you home," Izuku managed out through gritted teeth. The pain was much stronger now. But he had to be strong, like All Might would be. He had to get through it like a pro. "Your attacker's out cold… he won't be waking up anytime soon. I'm sorry to leave you alone, but you'll have to wait around here until the police come." He slowly started to trudge away, now focused on just getting back to the dorms.
He needed to get away.
Confused, he looked behind his shoulder.
"Where are you going?" the woman asked. "You're hurt. You should go to the hospital!"
He shook his head. "I'm sorry, I can't do that. But… please… just don't tell them I was here."
"But why? S-stop! You'll just hurt yourself more!"
Izuku couldn't listen to this anymore. He needed to get back to the dorms. Filling himself with One For All's power, he used the last of his strength to speed away, leaving the yelling woman behind. He'd done all he could, at least, but now he was going to pay the price.
So, maybe he deserved to be injured. He'd been reckless and had acted selfishly… however, he'd saved a life… but… it was just so complicated.
Through his hazy layer of pain, he could barely see where he was going anymore. It was probably out of pure miracle that as he sped down the last few twists and turns of the streets, he found himself in front of the UA dorms. Relief flooded him as he pulled to a stop. He'd made it. Without the groceries, sure, but it was better than being caught using his quirk without permission.
He trudged up to the door, keeping a close hand on his stomach as he did so. Inhaling shakily, he prepared himself with the task of slipping upstairs unnoticed. It'd be tricky, seeing as everyone was probably waiting for him to get back with the food, but he might be able to do it. But without the others noticing that he was injured?
This would be difficult.
Sighing to himself, he pushed the door open.
It was surprising how fast everyone was to greet him.
"Midoriya, you're back!"
"Finally- I was about to starve to death over here."
"What took so long, Deku?"
"STUPID NERD'S SO SLOW HE COULDN'T EVEN GET THE GROCERIES BACK IN TIME!"
Izuku stumbled back as everyone crowded him, gripping his stomach even tighter. He was starting to feel a little woozy from blood loss and hoped he wouldn't pass out. Just a little bit longer.
Uraraka did a quick sweep of him. "But where's the groceries, Deku?"
The other classmates then began to realize that what she said was right- Izuku didn't have any of the groceries they'd sent him off for.
"Were they closed or something?" Kirishima asked in disappointment.
Ashido wrinkled her nose. "Aw, man, I really wanted something to snack on tonight!"
Tokoyami waited a moment before speaking.
"What is it, Midoriya?"
At that moment, Izuku wished he was anywhere else than there. He felt sick and dizzy and all he wanted to do was sit down. The way everyone was staring at him so expectedly just made it worse.
But at least no one realized he was injured yet. He still hadn't figured out how he was going to explain that part.
His attention snapped back to Uraraka, who was watching him with curious eyes. "You look a little pale, are you okay? Did something else happen?"
His brain panicked. Think! They'll know! "No, I'm fine," he replied.
But then, he'd always been a terrible liar.
"Why are you holding your stomach like that, Midoriya?" Iida asked, gesturing to his hands which pressed over his abdomen. "Are you feeling ill? I could go get the medical supplies necessary-"
"No. No, uh, don't worry about it," Izuku managed out. "I'm just tired. The store… it… didn't have what we needed." He sighed, shaking his head. "Sorry. Anyways, I'm going to go to bed now…"
He turned for the elevator. He was so close. Just a little further… He'd go buy the groceries tomorrow with his own money, just once he was feeling better. No one would be the wiser and he wouldn't be caught for using his quirk.
But then Uraraka grabbed his hand. "Deku, wait-"
That was all it took. His hand now ripped away from his stomach, there was no more hiding it… the streak of blood across his stomach he'd tried so hard to hide was suddenly visible to the entire room.
The whole class gasped loudly. Even Bakugo had risen from his seat in the living room, looking uneasy.
"Deku!" Uraraka exclaimed and rushed over to look at his wound in horror. "What- what happened to you?"
"Midoriya," Todoroki started slowly, "was there a… fight? Were you robbed?"
The world was beginning to tilt and Izuku felt uneasy on his feet. But still, he held out. He had to tell them what had happened. "I didn't mean to, guys," he explained weakly. "I didn't want to have to use my quirk. But I had to. I had to save her."
His legs trembled underneath his weight. He couldn't stand much longer.
Suddenly, there were hands gripping his shoulders. It didn't take long before he was being guided over to the living room. "Somebody get him on the couch - quickly," Iida's urgent voice said, and Izuku found himself being pressed down on the cushions.
By now, the pain was steadily growing and still getting worse. He swallowed, looking up at all his classmates as they looked down at him in worry. "I'm sorry," he blurted out. "I didn't mean it."
"What's he talking about?"
"I don't know. He keeps apologizing for something..."
"What happened to him?"
"He seems very disoriented… alright, Midoriya, how many fingers am I holding up?" Iida stuck his fingers up and waved them closely in front of Izuku's face. Feeling sick at the motion, Izuku pushed them away.
"Look at all that blood!"
"What was he, stabbed?"
"Guys, I'm-I'm fine. It's just a scratch."
"A scratch? Deku, there's blood soaking through your shirt!"
So there was.
Izuku blinked slowly as the world rippled around him, almost like he was staring through a smudged glass mirror. He stared at his friends in desperation. "I… I…"
Suddenly, pain flared up in his stomach, and gasping, he clutched at it. No… this can't be happening right now… you have to be strong, Izuku...
Panicked voices yelled for him. He could feel his body giving out as he slumped back into the couch, but couldn't prevent the descent. Arms fumbled for him, voices asked if he was alright, but for some reason, he couldn't reply.
Because he wasn't alright. As the darkness consumed him, it was clear of that now.
His last thought was of how he truly didn't want to die. But then again, life didn't always go the way he planned it to.
"DEKU!" Uraraka screamed as the bloody boy lost consciousness in front of her.
All at once, the whole class swarmed around him, asking if he was alright and shaking him so that he'd wake up.
"I can't believe Midoriya fainted!"
"Is he still alive?"
"Of course he's alive, you idiot. He's still breathing!"
"He looks really pale… he must've lost a lot of blood!"
"GUYS!" Uraraka said loudly, and everyone turned to her. Her heart was thudding and her mind was racing at a hundred miles an hour. "We have to get him help as soon as possible! Shouldn't we get him to a hospital?"
"That would be the wisest decision," Iida confirmed. "Midoriya is very badly injured, and this is out of our hands by now!"
Todoroki shook his head. "We can't take him there yet. Do you see how much blood he's lost?" He gestured towards Izuku's stomach, where blood continued to soak through the fabric. Izuku's face was tightened up in pain and was rapidly getting paler. "He's too unsteady right now. We can't move him yet."
"Then what should we do?" Kaminari asked in frustration. "I'm not going to stand here and watch my friend die!"
"Then why don't we just call the nerd an ambulance?"
Everyone's heads swerved towards Bakugo, who stood to the side of the room. He tensed up at everyone's confused stares.
"What? You guys were too stupid to even think of that?"
Slowly, Todoroki nodded. "That could work. Someone- call the hospital for an ambulance. Meanwhile, we need to try to stop any more bleeding." As the half-cold, half-hot boy looked closer, it was evident that Izuku had torn open his wound even more since he'd got back. More blood soaked through his sweatshirt's fabric by the minute.
"I'll do it," Iida offered, before rushing off to the kitchen to make the phone call.
As soon as he was gone, Todoroki nodded, looking up at Yaoyorozu. "Yaoyorozu, can you make some bandages? We'll need them to wrap around Midoriya."
"Of course." Immediately, Yaoyorozu went to work with creating a long stream of bandages, going faster than she usually did.
"Uraraka, can you put pressure against Midoriya's wound?" Todoroki asked, turning to the worried brunette. "We can't risk him losing any more blood."
Uraraka nodded before quickly crouching at Izuku's side and lifting up his grey sweatshirt to inspect the bleeding wound. She held back a shocked gasp at the sight of it. Izuku hadn't just been cut - he'd been slashed. Ragged skin was lifted up at the curves of the wound and the injury itself was bleeding heavily. Already, Izuku's pale skin was stained with blood. She didn't know how deep the injury was, but it looked very bad.
Uraraka swallowed before pressing her palms against the blood flow, wincing when Izuku flinched at the touch. I'm sorry, she thought. But I have to stop you from bleeding out.
Izuku did not reply.
Ten seconds later, Yaoyorozu was done with the bandages and handed them to Todoroki. Uraraka quickly moved her hands out of the way but was confused when Todoroki suddenly stopped.
"What's wrong?" she asked fearfully. She'd realized before that Todoroki seemed to be the only one who really knew what to do for Izuku. So if he didn't know what to do next…
"The wound - it looks worse than I thought," Todoroki explained. "The knife might've been dirty when Midoriya got stabbed. He could get an infection if we're not careful."
"No!" Uraraka breathed. "We have to help him!"
"Don't worry. Once he gets to the hospital and has some antibiotics, he'll be fine..." Todoroki bit his lip. "Hopefully."
"Hopefully?" Uraraka repeated, the word feeling sour on her tongue. She glanced at Izuku who was now shivering from where he laid. "But…"
"The best we can do for now is clean out his wound with fresh water. Tsu, can you go wet some bandages?"
The frog girl nodded, eager to help out her injured friend. "Of course." Tsu took a few of the bandages from Todoroki before leaping off to the kitchen.
Uraraka looked back over at Deku who was leaning back limply into the couch. His face was scrunched up in pain and his breathing was getting heavier as she watched. She hated to see him like this. Especially when she was rendered so useless at a time like this.
Suddenly, Iida came back into the room, announcing, "The ambulance is on its way!"
"Good," Todoroki grunted.
As Iida came forward, he stopped when he reached Izuku, looking at the boy's wound worriedly. "How is he?"
"Not good. We still need to stop the bleeding, but we need to clean out the wound first," Todoroki said." "Where's Tsu?"
"Right here," Tsu answered as she came from the kitchen with her hands full of wet bandages. She made her way over to Todoroki before he quickly grabbed them. He wasted no time before pressing them against Izuku's bleeding stomach.
"Will he be alright?" Uraraka asked in a hushed tone, as if afraid to speak louder in case she disturbed Izuku.
Todoroki didn't say anything. Uraraka realized that even he, the most stoic person in the classroom, was worried about his classmate.
That didn't make her feel any better.
After another minute of silently cleaning out the wound, Todoroki grabbed some of the dry bandages and Uraraka assisted him in wrapping Izuku up. The boy groaned and shivered in his seat, and Uraraka could barely hold back her tears. "Deku, just hold on a little longer, okay?" she whispered. "You can't die on me. You just can't!"
Izuku didn't move.
Seconds later, there were sirens from outside. The whole class looked up, and, surprisingly, Bakugo was the first one to the door. He twisted the knob and threw the door open as the doctors started running over to them.
"WHAT TOOK YOU SO LONG?" Bakugo yelled as they entered the dorms. "YOU CALL YOURSELVES MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS?!"
"Bakugo, calm down," Kirishima ushered. "They're here to help!"
"Where's the boy?" the lead doctor asked, looking around in urgency.
Uraraka stood up from where she crouched, pointing at Izuku with tearful eyes. "He's over here. Please help him! He just… he has to live!"
The doctors didn't say anything as they rushed over, only looking over Izuku who was beginning to grimace in his seat. The man who'd spoken before looked up. "Who bandaged him?"
"That'd be me," Todoroki said as he stood up.
The doctor nodded. "Good job, kid. He would've lost a lot more blood than we'd have liked if you hadn't. Okay, we'll take it from here."
Todoroki looked slightly stunned at the praise but didn't say anything.
"Let's get him on a stretcher, and be careful to not jostle him," the lead doctor said to the others as they rolled over a cot. "He looks too pale. Could be going into shock. We don't want to force him into an uncomfortable position if we can help it."
Carefully, the doctors lifted the now-moaning Izuku up from the couch before laying him down on the stretcher, making sure he was laid out comfortably. Izuku's face was tight and drained of color, and he shivered against the fabric of the cot.
"Let's get him out of here," the doctor said, and before Class 1-A knew it, Izuku Midoriya was being rushed away to an ambulance. Whether he'd survive, they didn't know - but what they did know was that he was their friend.
...and they just couldn't bear it if he died.
Aizawa, All Might, the principal, and all the other teachers at UA had been notified shortly after the incident. All Might had gone to the police station to see if the culprit had been found while Aizawa went over to the dorms to help calm the students down.
Uraraka couldn't stop shaking. Izuku's blood was still on her fingers from when she'd pressed her hands against his stomach, and she kept finding herself looking at them. Finally, she rushed off to the bathroom to scrape it off, but couldn't calm down until she had nearly peeled away her very skin.
Class 1-A decided to visit the hospital shortly after - even Bakugo tagged along, surprisingly. As they rushed through the hospital's doors and immediately asked the front desk lady where Izuku Midoriya was, they couldn't help but fear if he was even still alive.
However, the lady nodded as she looked up from her computer. "Oh, yes, that boy. It says here he was admitted into room 328 forty two minutes ago. Are you family?"
Slowly, Uraraka nodded. "Yeah. We're his family."
No one argued.
And Class 1-A went upstairs to visit their missing family member.
"Right now, he's stable, but we'll need to keep him here for the next few days to make sure he doesn't get an infection," a doctor by the name of Matsuo explained, scribbling a few notes down on his clipboard before looking up at the group. "He lost a large amount of blood, but thankfully a blood transfusion wasn't necessary. Once he's discharged, he just needs to keep hydrated as much as possible."
The whole class sighed in relief.
"So Midoriya will make a full recovery?" Iida asked.
Tsu scratched at her chin. "Yeah, he'll be okay?"
Doctor Matsuo laughed lightly. "He should be fine with plenty of bed rest and a few days off his feet. Just make sure he doesn't strain himself or he'll risk tearing open the stitches we put in." He nodded. "But overall, the kid was lucky. He could've died if it wasn't for your quick thinking."
"That's thanks to Todoroki," Uraraka explained, pointing at the surprised boy. "He saved Deku's life!"
Todoroki looked down at his hands. "I did what I could. My father taught me what to do for any kind of stab injuries, so I just followed his instructions."
"You did more," Yaoyorozu smiled. "Midoriya's alive because of you."
Before anyone else could speak, there was a slight groaning from the bed. Everyone looked up to find Izuku, who was slightly tugging away from the IV cord he was hooked up to, waking up. His eyes were flickering open and he looked slightly confused when he found himself in the hospital room.
"Deku!" Uraraka exclaimed, rushing over to his bedside and just stopped herself just before she could tackle him in a hug. "You're awake!"
Izuku blinked slowly as he stared at her. "What… happened?" His voice was scratchy and sounded pained. Still, he waited for an answer.
"You got stabbed," Iida said in disapproval. "You were being reckless again, weren't you?"
"No, I-" Izuku winced as he tried to sit up in bed, but Uraraka quickly forced him back down against his pillow.
"No, Deku, you need your rest! Just... stay there."
Grudgingly, Izuku obliged.
But then his eyes widened. "Um, there was this lady I kind of saved from being robbed in an alleyway… I called the police to come and help her out… but… is she okay?"
Aizawa blinked in surprise, stepping forward to the foot of Izuku's bed. "Robbery? Midoriya, what exactly happened?"
Slowly, Izuku began to tell what had happened, from when he'd heard the scream to after he'd found out he'd been stabbed. He'd explained that he hadn't wanted to get into trouble for using his quirk to hurt someone, so he'd left the robber for the police to handle instead.
"I'm sorry I caused so much trouble," he finished, looking miserable. "I just - I couldn't stand by if someone was being hurt."
The class was silent for a minute before Aizawa finally spoke. "Midoriya… you do realize that you wouldn't have gotten in trouble for using your quirk like this? The law lets us use our quirks in self-defense." His tone was flat again. "From what it sounds like, that's what you did."
Izuku looked stunned. "So… I'm not in trouble?"
Uraraka smiled, shaking her head. "Of course not, Deku! You helped someone out. You're like… you're like a real hero!"
Suddenly, the whole class was chiming in.
"I wish I could've had that opportunity!"
"I bet it was so cool to fight a villain..."
"Now every hero agency will know that he's actually saved someone! Lucky!"
"It was very reckless, but good job for saving someone, Midoriya."
And then Uraraka suddenly turned serious. "But, Deku, if you ever get hurt and scare me like that again…" She sighed in exasperation. "I don't know what I'll do!"
Izuku reddened, looking down at his folded hands. "Sorry."
"Alright, I think Izuku's had enough commotion for one night. Let's leave him to rest," Aizawa ordered and began to herd the group of students out the door, ignoring their loud complaints. Uraraka was the last one to leave, giving a quick squeeze to Izuku's hand before she rushed out the door, waving goodbye.
As Izuku laid his head back against his pillow and felt exhaustion claim him, he felt more peaceful than he had in a long time.
Because for that one moment in time, however brief, he was a hero.
And he'd never felt anything better in his life.