Gran Torino wasn't working from an office but from his home, one of those old constructions built right after the apparition of quirks when the contractors were hired to create something which would last through a tornado, or whatever great quirks they could think about. Izuku never lived in one of those but he remembered visiting one and a man had told him that the walls were unbreakable, causing his mother to immediately ordered him not to take it as a challenge.
Izuku took a deep breath, clutching the case containing his costume, and after the slightest hesitation, he knocked two times. The door opened under his knuckles, not only unlocked but also opened.
''Is there anyone in?'' Izuku called.
No one answered.
He was fairly certain he had once seen a horror movie that started exactly like that.
''I'm coming in,'' Izuku announced loudly in order not to surprise anyone. The last thing he needed was to startle a hero who had trained All Might himself.
But he didn't need to worry.
Because the pro hero he had came to train under was laying on the floor, a tiny old man in a puddle of red and with what looked like to be guts around.
Izuku paused, only one foot inside the house, and he just stared.
There was a lot of things to be done. See if he was still alive. Call an ambulance if that was the case. See if the perpetrator was still in the house. Run away not to be targeted because the only thing worse than one dead body was two dead bodies. At least, move.
But Izuku just stood there, frozen. Half inside, half outside. His fingers were gripping at the door and his heartbeat was so loud in his ears that he couldn't hear anything else.
His mind was blank.
So he was absolutely not prepared for what happened next.
''I'M ALIVE!'' the old man yelled, making Izuku almost jump out of his skin.
He took a second to make sure his heart wasn't about to escape his ribcage and he rushed towards Gran Torino, trying to help him get up but the pro hero was already back on his feet, tiny and frail, leaning on his cane, and absolutely not like All Might had depicted him.
But for all he knew, Gran Torino's quirk turned him into a titan or he was an expert at martial art. Or maybe his strong point was his intellect. It wasn't because All Might had described him as brutal than it was because he was physically strong.
Or maybe time is the only enemy you can't defeat.
Gran Torino looked at him with eyes that were clear with a mix of calm and wonder : ''Who are you?''
Someone about to die from a heart attack.
''Midoriya Izuku,'' he bowed while examining the crime scene. Sausage, ketchup, and an unbroken plate twelve steps away. He should have seen that but he was too busy panicking. He didn't even know why.
Gran Torino tilted his head : ''Toshinori?''
Who is Toshinori? Does he live with someone? Izuku listened but there didn't seem to be anyone around. He would have to check.
''No, I am Midoriya Izuku. Your intern.'' It didn't seem to ring a bell. ''You sent me an offer for an internship. Do you remember?''
A flicker of recognition passed through his eyes and he nodded, finally remembering him.
''Toshinori. You're late.''
Dread filled Izuku, from his toes to the tips of his hair.
''Midoriya Izuku?'' he said one last time, refraining himself from crossing his fingers behind his back so he wouldn't have to call All Might to tell him his mentor was suffering from dementia.
''And who are you?'' Gran Torino asked again.
''Who do you think I am?''
This made the hero pause. ''Toshinori,'' he repeated.
Izuku had met his fair share of confused people as he looked around for quirks in retirement homes, and he had learned that what distressed them was to realize that they were losing memories, and to have to confront this fact. At those times, they seemed lost and confused, so he had learned not to insist.
So he smiled, and stopped contradicting Gran Torino.
''Would you like a glass of water?''
There again, a hesitation.
''Yes, I am parched,'' Gran Torino answered.
Izuku went to the fridge, grabbed a bottle of water, and after rummaging through the shelves, found two glasses and poured them a drink. Izuku was about to sit at the table with Gran Torino but he got up as he realized someone had to clean the mess on the floor.
Once he was done, he apologized towards Gran Torino, his phone in his hand. ''I just have to make a call. I will be right back.'' That would be an interesting news to deliver to All Might.
Izuku really didn't want to do that.
He was calling All Might when, from the corner of his eye, he saw something moving sneakily and he turned towards Gran Torino who was crouched near his case, looking at Izuku's costume. The green didn't match the jumpsuit his mother had picked for him, and alarm passed though him as he was perfectly imagining someone like Hatsume making modifications.
''Put on your costume quickly,'' Gran Torino ordered, his voice not shaking anymore, ''I have to evaluate your quirk before I can work with you.''
Izuku just stared at the new man in front of him.
Did he just...
''Nice costume!'' Gran Torino declared, confirming this whole man-whose-memory-was-failing-him'act was a joke, and not a good one. ''Put it on. You're going to need the armor.''
Seeing as Izuku wasn't moving to take the case, the pro hero tilted his head and changed his whole body language once again : ''Who are you?''
''That's not funny!'' Izuku shrieked, giving Gran Torino exactly what he wanted : a reaction.
''It is for me,'' the pro hero smiled as he closed the case. ''Honestly, I didn't think you would fall for it so completely. But I guess I have to convince you I am worth your time, now.''
Before Izuku could make him realize he would never be arrogant enough to think a pro hero had to prove himself to him, the little man disappeared from Izuku's line of sight in a burst of wind, so fast that by the time Izuku had turned his head to follow him with his gaze, he was already gone.
Jump or Bounce, but there is also an air movement that can be useful for speed and for attacks.
Wall, floor, wall, and wall again, and suddenly, Gran Torino was rushing towards Izuku.
Speed. Izuku avoided him but it wasn't necessary for Gran Torino had never meant to hit him and he had already jumped on the ceiling, where he stuck as if he was using a variant of Slide and Glide. Definitely an air pressure involved, allowing him to stuck to the wall like a suction pad.
One quirk, different applications, and a power developed over the years. Something that never showed up with civilians in their society, something born of experience and not from the quick road of obtaining multiple quirks.
And like every time Izuku was confronted to such a quirk, he was in awe.
''You have power but you don't have the experience to control it,'' Gran Torino declared, ''And this will be your downfall. You are shackling yourself for some reasons, and this means that the day you will meet someone on your level, and trust me, this will be soon, you are going to lose because you will be busy trying to control your quirk as you're fighting.''
Like when he had fought Todoroki, unable to get him out of the ring because he was scared of inflicting serious damages.
This time, when Gran Torino nudged the case containing his suit at him, Izuku took it.
A really enthusiast support student had modified his costume, putting more black into it, more protections, especially on the legs, and Izuku sighed in relief when he saw that the design of the jacket and the pants didn't change too much. Better, there was pockets inside the jacket and his notebook almost spontaneously appeared inside.
He smiled at the black fingerless gloves, the modification he had asked, then put his helmet on.
Izuku activated his quirks as soon as he finished, already thinking on a strategy. Gran Torino activated his quirk and hit in the same breath so waiting for the fight to start would mean it would already be too late.
Any Speed he could spare was a given. So was Shock Absorption and Durability. The taser quirk would be so useful if Izuku was able to use it in front of a pro hero. Izuku sighed as he thought of all his perfectly good quirks which couldn't be used in front of someone.
By the time he left the little room where he changed, Gran Torino was already half out the door, and Izuku rushed as he imagined the pro hero abandoning him here.
Gran Torino looked at him as if Izuku didn't make any sense. The irony.
''We're not staying at my house! I saw what you did during the Sport Festival and I don't have a lad with a cement quirk to fix it afterwards!''
Endeavor seemed awfully proud to see Shouto in this oversized office of his, a place no member of the family had ever visited. As far as his old man was concerned, it was a sanctum reserved for heroes worthy of the name, and now, Endeavor was enchanted to see his perfect successor stepping up.
''Are you ready to conquer the world?'' Endeavor smiled.
Shouto knew this internship was going to be annoying but he had obviously underestimated the problem. Despite the high number of words contained in the Japanese language, he could never string any of them together to explain how much he wanted to hit Endeavor with a chair.
''Not by following you. I will make my own path.''
''If you want,'' Endeavor conceded, obviously amused.
He had been in a good mood since the Sport Festival, when Shouto had used his flames, obviously smug to know he had been obliged to use a power that came from the Flame hero. And he assumed, like everyone else, that now, Shouto would use his flames during fights.
Even Midoriya did, even if he had taken in back right after.
It wasn't that simple.
Shouto didn't want to abandon his pledge. He hated the fact he had spent so many years working on his ice, molding it so it would be as powerful as it was, only to realize this wasn't enough.
And now, he had to deal with the fact his flames were incredibly difficult to control because if he had grown in power, he had neglected control.
What if he lost control of his quirk and hurt someone?
''Get ready, then,'' Endeavor said, interrupting his thoughts. ''We're leaving.''
''Where are we going?'' Shouto asked.
Endeavor's grin widened.
''I am going to show you what it is to be a hero.''
The gymnase chosen by Gran Torino was square and devoid of any equipment, except for the mats on the floor. As if someone had removed anything expensive only to leave the sturdy walls.
Izuku had a bad feeling about this. He could still remember All Might shaking in fear, and if Gran Torino hadn't told him the helmet wasn't necessary, he would be hiding his face behind it.
But All Might doesn't have several Shock Absorption.
It quickly appeared that Shock Absorption didn't keep Izuku from being slammed by Gran Torino who was moving at lightning speed.
Now, Izuku was supposed to have the quirks to rival with him in speed, and he did. Almost. But every time he paused, even for the tiniest moment, to try to aim in Gran Torino's direction, the pro hero took advantage of it to try to kick him in the teeth.
Izuku kept moving, trying not to be the kind of obvious target that stayed in the middle of the room while impersonating a punching bag, but Gran Torino kept appearing in his space too fast for him to register it, and he could only parry or dodge, only by a hair.
He was completely on the defensive.
Izuku was smiling.
He had an internal radar able to detect any quirk, but Gran Torino was too fast for Izuku to be able to pinpoint his location due to his quirk. So he stopped trying to do that, and he just let his mind wander. Trying to mentally follow Gran Torino was as useless as trying to run after him since his jumps were so erratic. Let him come to you.
It almost worked.
Izuku avoided a mean kick to the face but Gran Torino was already gone when he tried to catch him by the arm. Balance. Too late. He crashed into the ground, on the side, and got back on his feet in a second.
''You know you're supposed to hit back, don't you?'' Gran Torino asked from the wall.
Don't focus on his quirk. You're losing energy for nothing.
''I am getting so bored right now. I should have asked the ice boy to come.''
Stop playing with your quirks. Remember why you're here.
Izuku kicked the air in a wide move, Air pressure in tow as Gran Torino propelled himself to escape. Still, the air blast provoked by the kick touched him, not enough to stop him.
Just slowing him down enough for Izuku to hit him.
The elder smacked the wall and fell on the ground, screaming.
''AAAAH! MY BACK!''
Izuku froze then rushed towards him, panic swallowing whole. He hadn't used any Strength, afraid of just that, and now, the pro hero was broken !
''Oh my God, I am sorry! Are you okay?''
The kick he received to the face for his solicitude projected him through the room, a taste of blood in his mouth. You bit your tongue. Durability didn't cover internal injuries, after all.
''Why did you lose against the Todoroki boy?'' Gran Torino asked while the student was still sprawled on the floor, checking for injuries.
''Because he was stronger,'' Izuku answered automatically just as 130 centimeters of pro hero try to embed him into the floor.
But this time, he felt him coming. There you are. Izuku dodged and hit in the same breath, palm open and Air Pressure again. Not enough to stop the propelling quirk on Gran Torino's feet but enough to slow him down once again as he kicked him in the back, and the elder retreated again.
''No, he wasn't,'' Gran Torino retorted. ''You are. It's obvious. So why did you lose? Scared of winning?''
I don't want to win at any price.
Izuku never had the time to answer. A barrage of kicks rained upon him, relentless.
At some point, the hit were harder. Izuku couldn't avoid all of them, and even if he wasn't actually hurt by them, every time he paused for the tiniest moment, Gran Torino absolutely bashed him.
Why aren't the Speed quirks enough?
Because he isn't wasting any second. Every movement is efficient. He is used to fight physically while you rely on your quirk.
Nothing to hide behind but Izuku could take distance and he jumped back, feinting left and right to by some precious seconds.
He let his mind roam, feeling Gran Torino's quirk who kept flaring up, and trying to predict where he would appeared next. He used every of his usual tricks. Speed, Jump, Acceleration and Cooldown, anything that allowed to be as fast and mobile as the prop here. Resistance and Shock Absorption to take care of the hit and the momentum behind every kicks. Air Pressure to keep him at distance.
It was like trying to fight against a tidal wave. You could push against the water but it would win in the end. That was the difference made by experience.
It was thrilling.
Izuku started to hit back more and more, taking advantage of the any opening, Acceleration flaring to give his just an edge, and more and more, this was enough.
At first, Gran Torino relied on patterns during his attacks. Izuku started to notice, and when the pro changed, he learned the new ones too. While fighting, avoiding, and using Air Pressure to gain some distance when needed, the teenager started to understand the limits. What he could do. To realize how not to break his opponent.
It allowed Izuku to drop to the floor, surprising Gran Torino, and to kick with Air Pressure without worrying of what would happen. Gran Torino managed to almost dodge, but Izuku got back on his feet as the pro hero was starting to accelerate again (predictable for only a second), jumped, and punched him in the chest, only using Acceleration and the momentum born from the quirk.
Throwing him through the room once again.
''My back!'' Gran Torino screamed.
Then waited. When he looked up, he saw that Izuku didn't move towards him, and that his arm was raised, his fingers in position to flicker with Air Pressure when he would inevitably attack him again.
This made the pro hero smile.
''So you're finally learning.'' He sat up and stretched. ''I was starting to wonder if you were really invested into becoming a hero.''
Izuku stop aiming at the pro hero and started -just started- to relax. He would sense the moment Gran Torino would use his quirk, and worst case scenario, he had Shock Absorption.
He didn't know how long they had been fighting but it was long enough for the bite on his tongue to stop hurting, replaced by a light pain in his skull.
''It's my dream,'' Izuku said, blinking to see his reaction to light. He wasn't bothered by it so he didn't overuse his quirk.
As for Gran Torino, apart from the fact he was sitting, he didn't seem tired or anything.
Does he have a Stamina quirk or something?
''Why ?'' Gran Torino asked. ''Why did you choose that dream?''
''I want to help whoever needs help.''
I want to be here for anyone who wants to be helped, even if they think no one cares.
''That's enough for me. Why ? Why did you decide to become a hero ?''
It wasn't a question Izuku usually asked, because everyone wanted to be a hero. Everyone, at some point, had that dream. But that specific pro hero didn't seem to share this almost universal mindset, and All Might had told him why, though Izuku had believed he was exaggerating at the time.
''To use my quirk freely,'' Gran Torino confirmed with no hesitation.
Izuku laughed. He couldn't disagree with that.
''There is an ice box with drinks and snacks right behind the door. Be a good intern and bring them back. We're taking fifteen minutes, then we're doing that again. You have the dreadful habit of holding back so you don't know your limits. Training for the rest of the day should be a good start.''
Toshinori didn't move as Tsukauchi-kun was leaving. The detective had just told him about the noumu, how he had been created, how he had the DNA of several completely different people, and that thanks to it, he had several quirks.
They both knew that additional DNA alone didn't result in extra quirks.
It needed a Transfer.
Toshinori couldn't help but wonder if Young Midoriya's DNA got altered every time he took a new quirk.
He was supposed to be dead.
It couldn't be Young Midoriya. Even if Toshinori wasn't trusting him, he didn't have the means to change someone's body with drugs and science.
All for One was alive because somehow, Toshinori had failed.
Midoriya Izuku was horribly powerful but he had no real technique. Whatever training he had was probably self-taught and that was the reason Sorahiko had managed to punch him in the face many times.
But the problem was that the kid didn't care. Usually, a hit to the face stunned, a hit to the body at least stop the opponent for a moment. But Midoriya was barely slowed down, and quickly, it appeared he wasn't taking damages when it came to blunt force trauma.
Of course, there was still the likely possibility Sorahiko hadn't hit hard enough, since he was certain both of them were holding back, but he wasn't about to go full strength against a fifteen-years-old. After all, filling the paperwork for killing an intern was quite dreadful.
Unlike Sorahiko, Midoriya didn't hide how tired he was after their session, but he was positively giddy about it.
And Sorahiko didn't see the sharp resemblance with All for One anymore. There wasn't this same intensity and wild emotions he had seen during the Sport Festival, and without that, he was just a kid. Toshinori had been right to notice this only happened when he was using his full power, and only in dire situations.
Allied to the fact Toshinori had checked that he never took any quirk without permission and that he didn't know about what would happen at the USJ...
There was the real possibility they were facing a descendant of All for One, someone the fiend hadn't found and corrupted yet. It could be an incredible opportunity.
Or it could be a clever trap with All for One placing a talented boy who was obviously mimicking All Might near Toshinori just as he needed to find a successor.
Ultimately, Sorahiko was well disposed towards him. There was an innocence hard to feign here. When he had thought Sorahiko was losing his memories, he had been nothing but caring, taking care of the situation. Making sure Sorahiko was alright, calling Toshinori without delay. Caring.
But Sorahiko wasn't like his student. He couldn't take the risk.
He needed one more verification, but he couldn't check without Toshinori.
He wasn't surprised when the kid sneaked out. It was around eleven, and he passed by the window and dropped to the ground as if details like momentum and gravity didn't have a hold on him. Sorahiko watched him disappear into the street, unhurried as he was looking around, searching for something.
Obviously, Sorahiko had to follow him, for he didn’t trust anyone and if Toshinori himself told him the sky was blue, he would still look up to check.
Now, Toshinori had told him Midoriya was able to sense quirks around him, so he didn't run after him. Instead, he simply followed him thanks to the tracer Sorahiko had put in his shoe while he was taking a shower.
Yes, he did that.
He was expecting Midoriya to meet someone or to at least do something fun and reckless teenagers ought to do but instead, he found him between two buildings.
Climbing the walls in bounds like Gran Torino did. The jumps were clumsy and more than often, Midoriya was throwing his hand to the wall to keep himself from falling.
He is clearly unafraid of the interdiction to use quirks in public spaces.
And he wasn't making a noise. Even with the noises of the city, Sorahiko should have heard him, especially since he was far from graceful. One of his quirks must have allowed him to smother any sound.
Sorahiko spend a long time watching this child who could have taken his quirk and who was instead reduced to mimicking him.
Midoriya was putting too much weights on his bounds, an usual mistake. It took him half an hour to stop crashing into the wall and actually climbing with sheer speed.
He trained for two hours more, grinning.
Whatever happens, he is going to be a handful.
''To truly accomplish anything, one must need will and conviction. Those without them, the weak ones, they will be weeded out,'' the Hero Killer announced as if the knife near Tomura's throat wasn't enough of a clue. ''It's only natural. That's why you're about to die.''
Stain was stupidly fast and he had neutralized Kurogiri in a moment before pining Tomura on the floor. The physical strain was making the wounds from the USJ hurt again and Tomura didn't want to deal with this nonsensical situation.
It wasn't even like Tomura wanted his help. He just thought it would be interesting to have another hero-hater around. But this one had principles, as if killing heroes for a cause was nobler than killing them because they were annoying.
Stain moved the huge blade near Tomura's head and he realized he was about to touch the hand on his face.
That can't happen.
''Hold on. Not this hand. Not this one.''
Annoying. Bothersome. Yapping for nothing. A pain in my side.
The type the young man hated the most.
''I'll kill you,'' Tomura said, meaning every word as he went to this cold place where might made right, and this time, the Hero Killer paid attention.
Tomura's hand was on the serrated knife, his five digits already working their wonders, and the blade starting to crumble between his fingers. He had sent only a little push, so he knew it would soon stop. Just enough to leave a memento of what he could do to the hero killer.
As for what he had said...
''You're sure talk a lot. As for conviction... Nah, I've hot nothing as grand as that. But if I have to say what drives me, I'd say it's All Might. That piece of garbage. And the society that worships him.''
All Might was responsible for everything. The state of his society. The responsible of this smothering peace. The one who had hurt Sensei.
Tomura had dreams about turning his smiling face to dust, for leave him flayed and pitiful so people would realize what heroes were really like : piles of cold meat that couldn't save anyone.
Maybe he would take care of the stupid kid first, right in front All Might's eyes to teach him how powerless he really was.
The blade decayed, the effect of the quirk stopping right at the hilt.
''I wanna crush them all into dust,'' Tomura laughed. ''That's my conviction.''
The Hero Killer fell back, but for a moment, his eyes widened and Tomura could see he had gotten to him.
At that point, Tomura wanted to kick the parasite out of his place, and he certainly didn't want to hear talks about alliances and destroying society together despite their difference in ideology, but Kurogiri had insisted, arguing that Stain would be a good ally, useful for their goals and so on.
Sensei kept telling him several times to listen to Kurogiri, so Tomura accepted. After all, he could use the hero killer.
And kill him afterwards.
As soon as Kurogiri escorted him out, he turned towards the monitor, aware that Sensei had been listening in. The man who has saved Tomura was never far, his voice always in reach, but it was truer than before now that he was back in Japan.
Sensei didn't usually tell him where he was, so that must mean that a visit in person was imminent. That meant Tomura had to show results with the league.
''Sensei, how many noumu are ready to go?''
''None of the level of the one who attacked UA with you but six are operational at this point.''
''Send them my way,'' Tomura asked.
''Because I don't like the hero killer. And I am allowed to kill what I don't like, right?''
That was what Sensei had taught him but Tomura sensed the pause right before Sensei answered. He should have tried to say why he needed them instead of what he wanted them. Sensei liked plans.
''You can have three. Use this opportunity to learn something.''
Around 6 am, Sorahiko received a call from Toshinori, who told him that All for One was alive.
It wasn’t a great way to start the day.
Sorahiko checked on Midoriya who was hidden in his blanket cocoon, some strands of green indicating that he was indeed here and didn’t turn into a pillow monster during the night, and the retired hero left his house because this wasn’t something the boy needed to hear.
‘’Are you sure?’’ Sorahiko asked.
‘’It’s not Young Midoriya,’’ Toshinori answered and there was a note of impatience in his voice. He was rattled because he always made sure to be overtly respectful. ‘’He doesn’t have the financial means, he was almost killed by All for One’s very creation, and Tsukauchi vouched for him.’’
Or maybe he was protective of the boy.
Hard-working and wanting to help people. Toshinori probably didn’t have a chance.
‘’On that, we agree. The midget isn’t a villain. Personally, I think his heart is in the right place. But hell is paved with good intentions and he could grow into someone terrifying.’’ Sorahiko stopped once he found a nice spot in the park and sat. ''And that’s not even talking about All for One finding him.’’
‘’He would have to go through me first,’’ Toshinori growled.
That’s what worries me.
The simple thought that this bastard was alive was painful. They had sacrificed so much. A friend. Their life. Toshinori has exchanged his health against a death, and it didn’t even stick.
At the other end of the line, Toshinori sighed, and there was so much weariness in this simple sound. ‘’I have to tell Young Midoriya.’’
‘’Yes, you do,’’ Gran Torino confirmed.
And he had to be there at the time. Just to be sure.
‘’… Really?'' Toshinori asked, obviously perplexed. ''I thought you were going to tell me to keep it secret and that no one could know. Why do you always agree with me when I least expect it?’’
This made Sorahiko smile.
‘’To keep you on the edge. It’s good for your health. But as far as the boy is concerned, you have to tell him because first, he could be in danger. The son of a bitch could be interested in a member of his bloodline with so many interesting powers. Second… the more we keep from him, the more distrustful he will be and it wouldn’t be the first time a child with a quirk disliked by the society went on a dark path because the adults around him failed.’’
Idiocy created more villains than actual evil.
‘’Can you watch over him?’’ Toshinori asked.
‘’Do I have to? I was planning on leaving him in a car in a parking during a hot day with the windows closed.’’
His former student quickly changed the subject.
‘’And I have to seriously look for a successor,’’ Toshinori added, confirming what Sorahiko was suspecting.
‘’Didn’t you tell me you almost had a successor?’’
‘’I might have exaggerated.’’
Nana had found a successor when she was much younger than Toshinori, but unlike every past One for All holders, Toshinori had managed to stop All for One, if only for a time. Sorahiko wasn't about to nag him into picking someone quickly.
‘’It’s your power, Toshinori. You will make the right choice, in due time.’’
Youth was the future. That meant that despite an enormous amount of stress and the massive appearance of white hair, the old generation had to trust them.
By the time Sorahiko returned to his house, he realized that Midoriya was still in bed and didn’t look like he would wake up any time soon. Those youngsters these days, out at night and sleeping all day. As a moral guardian, Sorahiko couldn’t let it pass.
He took several deep breath, before vocalizing. He repeated the exercise three times until he decided that his voice wouldn’t fail him.
And it certainly did not.
‘’GOOOOOOOOOOOOD MORNIIIIIING VIETNAAAAAAAAM !!!!’’ Sorahiko screamed at full lungs.
The door was fortunately opened so Sorahiko had the privilege to see the kid rocket out of bed and clang to the ceiling like a scared cat in a cartoon. He jumped down a second later, frantically looking around the same way firemen looked for fire when they were brutally woken up, and instead, he saw Sorahiko’s grin.
Afterwards, Midoriya showed no reaction when Sorahiko starting to rant about those young people who stayed all night on their phones and how the early bird got the worm. But though he wasn’t saying anything… His eyes and his body language were clearly trying to convey a ‘My good sir, could you kindly shut up as soon as possible, please ?’, an silent Morning Communication Sorahiko mastered even though he didn’t have the occasion to talk it in several decades.
So of course, he kept ranting just to annoy the kid.
As soon as Midoriya saw the coffee machine, he made a beeline for it and didn’t stop looking at it until the pot was ready. Quickly, he poured it in two mugs even if Sorahiko hadn't asked anything and he grabbed the sugar pot. One spoon went in the boy’s mug. Then another. Then a third. Then, it simply didn’t stop.
Sorahiko, magnanimous man that he was, didn’t say anything as the boy destroyed his insulin level. But he did put his palm above his mug to protect the beverage from being turned into syrup. He watched Midoriya drinking the abomination that could barely be called a coffee anymore as fast as he could without burning himself, but Sorahiko couldn’t quite contain his smile as nostalgia swept through him.
The last time he saw someone who needed coffee that badly to become a person, it was Shimura Nana.
At nightfall, the nomu brought chaos and desolation in their wake, terrifying the civilians who were running for their lives, realizing for the first time in their lives that peace was a lie and how weak and pathetic they really were as they had to face a real danger. Even the heroes were quickly overwhelmed, desperately trying to contain the threat Sensei had created.
''Well done, my nomu,'' Tomura smiled as he was standing on the rooftop, proud like a mother watching her child making their first steps.
''I take it you're not joining the fray?'' Kurogiri noticed behind him, a shadow of sarcasm tainting his voice.
''I'm hurt, you idiot. That's why I took them.''
He would fight another day, when he wouldn't be nursing so many gunshot wounds. As for now...
''By tomorrow morning, the world will have forgotten all about you, Hero killer,'' he smiled, watching the show he had prepared to eclipse Stain.
He looked at one of the noumu with fondness as he crashed through a train. Probably terrifying the passengers inside.
Izuku was rushing forwards, ignoring Gran Torino's orders to stay put. He couldn't, not when there was another noumu.
''Come back!'' the train agent screamed.
But Izuku was already gone, in free-fall. Shock Absorption. Speed. He reached the ground and started running without taking a pause, but Gran Torino and the noumu weren't in sight.
But others were.
Izuku passed through the panicked people, trying to reach the noumu, to help, but he was shooed by the heroes as soon as he approached. The common courtesy during hero fights was for the civilians to stay out of the way because no hero wanted to take care of an untrained person, so they thought they would make an exception for a hero student. Clearly, he was wrong.
Fall back. They are used to work in teams, you can't go in there and ruin their dynamics by forcing them to worry about you.
Was this an attack from the League of villains?
It had to be because they were the only one who had a noumu and who would just randomly let them loose.
''Tenya! Where are you?'' a pro hero screamed, panicked. ''Tenya!''
Blue costume, water quirk. Manual. Iida was supposed to intern with him.
Everything suddenly became so clear it almost hurt.
Iida wouldn't run around without his supervisor, especially during a villain attack. He was the perfect student, someone dutiful. There was only one thing which could be more important than the duty owed to the hero who had offered him an internship.
The Hero Killer usually stayed around for three attacks. The one on Ingenium was only the second one.
No wonder Iida chose Hosu.
On his own. Against a S-Ranked villain. Blinded by rage.
Izuku ran, climbed the wall with Slide and Glide and jump, and ran even faster on the roofs.
He had a whole town to cover.
Tenya was a man on a mission. He was a little brother whose whole family was hurting because of one criminal, and Tenya had to find him. To make him pay for all the pain, all the despair he had put them through.
And the Hero Killer would know which hero had brought his fall. He would know he would meet his end because of Ingenium and those who loved him.
It did not work out quite as planned.
First, Stain stabbed his arm. Then he kicked him in the face. And as Tenya fell on the ground, unable to move, he hadn't managed to even touch the Hero killer.
And because he had been blinded by rage, he didn't realize there was someone else here. A trapped hero he could have saved if he hadn't rushed in.
Tensei would have never made this mistake.
Tenya realized he was going to die. He thought he was prepared to it, prepared to sacrifice his life to take down the criminal who hurt his brother. But he realized he was going to be another victim, though a helpless one this time. He wasn't able to do anything.
Not like that. I can't go like that.
''It was nice meeting you, Ingenium. And farewell,'' the Hero Killer mocked as he raised his katana, about to deliver the killing blow. ''Consider yourself a humble offering to improve the society.''
And as the sword fell down, something cut through the air and hit the Hero Killer in the head with a boing noise, so hard it almost made him fall.
Stain took a step back, stunned by the projectile who was actually a green helmet who felt near the Hero Killer's spiked boots. He raised his head to touch his forehead, and he realized he was bleeding from a cut that was crossing his eyebrow.
Before Tenya had the time to realize what'd just happened, a pair of red sneakers appeared in his field of vision.