Tomura barely managed to pull his hand away from gnashing teeth, a startled gasp escaping his scarred lips upon nearly losing a limb. However, that frightened demeanor hastily turned into agitation. The same hand reached forward once more, this time in retaliation to the intent of harm.
All it took was all five of his fingers to make contact with the creature's face. A bloodcurdling roar resounded over the thrashing of chains as Tomura's quirk took effect. Flesh began to decay around the victim's facial features, the disintegration causing complete agony.
“Tomura. I believe that is enough.”, a placid voice cut into the tortured cries despite the difference in volume.
Tomura's head whipped around in surprise, watching a tall figure step out from shadows that once concealed their features. To be fair, there was nothing but marred scar tissue where his face should be, but his body was still in tact with a dapper business suit to boot. “Sensei..”, Tomura felt his knees buckle in his master's presence; the desire to kneel in recognition of such power overrode any prior emotions.
“We wouldn't want to dispose of our creation prematurely, would we?”, the deep voice continued chiding Tomura as it drew nearer.
“Forgive me.”, Tomura finally gave in to the pressure as he fell to one knee, “I lost control again..”
“Rise.”, Tomura's Sensei motioned for his disciple to stand despite the pleased tone he spoke with. “While you need to be more mindful of letting yourself become overwhelmed with anger, there is no need to apologize when you're still learning. You're bound to make mistakes, that much is understandable.”, an assuring hand placed itself on Tomura's shoulder.
“Thank you, Sensei.”, Tomura bowed his head to hide the tears brimming his eyes. Thankfully, his hair was a tangled blue mess that hung over his face, so it was easier to conceal the waterworks.
“Now.. Let's have a look at the Titan. Shall we?”, the warm hand on Tomura's shoulder slipped away with an unsettling drop in temperature.
The creature jerked its head up, as if it were waking up from a nightmare. The area that had been decayed looked completely healed over due to one of the many quirks that had been used to create it. Tomura recalled what his Sensei was referred to by others: All For One. The name wasn't without meaning, it had been chosen with the fitting that his Sensei can collect various quirks. Some of those had been gifted to the creature chained before them.
All For One came to a halt, leveling his height with his creation. The Titan was a mere three meters tall, but looked shorter in its current captive position. He then just stood there, as if he was calculating something. Defiant eyes stared back through green locks of overgrown hair. The Titan looked like it was prepared to lunge, but it just as quickly turned docile due to a simple wave of All For One's hand.
“I thought it would be taller.. Hence the name 'Titan'...”, Tomura criticized the experiment's appearance.
A low hum came from his Sensei in response. “I suppose we could consider this one another result of miscalculations.”
Tomura unconsciously brought his fingernails to run along his neck. “The Titan was a waste of time. We should have just continued working on the Nomu. I knew that brat wasn't worth kidnapping!”, his fingers continued to claw at his throat as he felt for the suffocating feeling. It felt like a grip was there, he just couldn't pry it off no matter how much he scratched. Soon, the scraping began to cut into his skin and drew blood.
“Tomura, cease that at once.”, the command snapped Tomura out of his trance. All For One stood over him like a disappointed parent. “I thought Kurogiri told you to break that habit.”, he then drew a handkerchief with a lighter demeanor.
Tomura accepted the cloth with remorse, using it to dab at the fresh cuts. “I've been trying..”
“Shall I set up another appointment with Doctor Daruma?”, the suggestion comes out sounding more like a threat than anything else.
“No!”, Tomura shouted, almost too desperately. He flinched slightly at his own outburst, “It's just.. I feel different every time I visit him. It feels like I'm being tweaked, er, changed..”
All For One hummed as he contemplated Tomura's reasoning. After a brief moment, he discarded the subject and turned his focus back to the Titan. “Even if our experimentation wasn't what we were aiming to achieve, we can't chalk it up as a complete failure either. We can still make use of it.”
“How so, Sensei?”, Tomura's interest peeked with his eyebrows as he eagerly listened for what plan his master may conjure up.
“What has our goal been since the very beginning, Tomura?”, All For One answered his disciple's question with his own.
“To destroy All Might!”, Tomura hissed the hero's name like it was a bad taste in his mouth.
“No.”, that reply caught Tomura by surprise if his expression was any indication. “Well, yes.. but it's not the fundamental aspect.”, All For One felt the need to elaborate. “The goal is to land a blow to society that it won't be able to recover from.”
“How is a failed experiment going to do that?”, Tomura had to physically stop himself from scratching at the feeling of irritation that returned at the base of his neck.
“You're forgetting what the 'failed experiment' was derived from: a child. What would be worse than the heroes losing a kid on their watch?”, his Sensei was trying to help Tomura fill in the blanks.
“They find the kid dead?”, it was more of a question than an answer.
All For One chuckled like Tomura told a joke. “You aren't wrong. However, you aren't thinking long term. I've gifted this boy with a combination of powerful quirks; I wouldn't want them all going to waste. We'll let the heroes have a little victory, we'll sell the child to some other criminal organization before tipping off the authorities. Then, our little monster will be among the system, serving as a ticking time bomb.”
Tomura imagined the headlines that could come from such cataclysm. “Yes.. Yes, I like that.”, he giddily nodded along.
All For One gave a single nod in approval, “In the meantime, we can begin working on a second titan and finish the Nomu as you suggested.”
The mischievous smile on Tomura's face then faded into a grimace, “But master.. What if the brat tells the heroes that he was rescued from the wrong villains? He could potentially lure them back to our hideout.”
All For One waved off the concern before using the same hand to cover the Titan's face. “Not to worry, Tomura. When I'm through with him.. he won't remember a single thing about his experience here.”
Then, a powerful surge of energy pulsed from All For One's palm and entered the Titan's head.
Once more, the room is filled with tortured cries and rattling chains.
Thanks for giving this story a chance! It's my first one, as well as my first time posting on this site, so I hope I didn't do a poor job of figuring it out. If you have any helpful tips for me to adjust things, please let me know!
I also urge you to leave a review, I feel like comments are the right kind of fuel to motivate me moving forward, even if it's criticism.
I have plans that extend all the way to the provisional license arc though, so I hope you'll stick around to see what I do!
Izuku felt like he had just emerged from deep depths of water, the numb feeling of pressure on his mind and body slowly fading away. He dared to crack his eyes open, the attempt nearly short lived when something bright began making them sting. When they finally adjusted, he realized it was sunlight radiating from a window that had almost blinded him. It was a beautiful sight to behold, one that he couldn't recall seeing last.
When he was done staring at the skyline, Izuku tilted his head down to spot two catheter lines in his arms and chest, yet there was an absence of pain from them. The scent of flowers came from his left, but his head felt too heavy to turn anymore. A yawn nearly broke through his lips, but he compromised with himself to lay his head back down instead. The cushioning of a pillow and blankets nearly made him slip back into unconsciousness. It was although he had been stirring in his sleep for the past five years, everything felt so surreal.
Thinking hard, Izuku recalled his last proper memory of being surrounded by doctors & nurses alike. He remembered high-powered lamps above him, the heat making him sweat but his body still cold. It was as if time started skipping at random, his sense of awareness vanishing from thin air every now and then. The recollection was too blurry, like a disjointed dream that would be forgotten hours from then.
Suddenly, a draft swept across the room as somebody opened the door to it. Izuku suppressed a shudder, but that didn't stop him from curling into his blankets even further.
The person that had entered looked to be a short but stout doctor. The man was missing hair on his head, aside from a bushy mustache. Beyond circular glasses that looked akin to goggles, his eyes bulged in shock upon discovering his patient is awake. Izuku couldn't quite place his finger on it, but the doctor felt vaguely familiar.
“What a surprise!”, the man acted quite eccentric as he bounded over to Izuku. “Nobody expected you to wake up so soon, but it's probably for the best. The press has been hounding the hospital ever since the heroes brought you here and your mother has been worried sick.”
Only a handful of the doctor's words managed to register in Izuku's brain. “W- What do you mean?”, his throat felt rough & coarse as his voice came out in a choked and raspy tone. Izuku couldn't tell if it was a result of going so long without speaking or the lack of water, but he was willing to bet part of it had to do with dehydration.
The doctor didn't seem to notice, or perhaps he just didn't care. However, his previously peppy demeanor suddenly shifted for a moment, as if he had just made a new discovery, “That's right.. You must not remember very much of the details..”, at least he had the courtesy to answer his patient's question, “Let me know if this rings any bells.”
“Five years ago, you were abducted by a group of villains.”, Izuku felt something drop into the pit of his stomach at that revelation. He wanted a moment to take it in, or possibly interject with a few questions, but he also figured the doctor would provide the answers necessary if allowed to continue. “Only recently did a group of underground heroes find you during a raid. What's miraculous about it, is that you don't appear to have a single scratch on your body prior to our medical examination.”, this was also quite the shock for Izuku, but to be fair, anybody would be surprised to receive that information.
“I- If.. I-”, sore croaks turned into a coughing fit when Izuku attempted to respond. Only then did the doctor take notice of his patient's difficulty to talk and only then did he move to hand him a cup of water. “Thank you.”, Izuku still spoke in a hoarse voice after taking a sip of the drink. The doctor waved it off before gesturing for Izuku to continue.
“If the villains that took me didn't want to harm me or.. o- or..”, Izuku started thinking of the implications behind somebody kidnapping a young child, “or.. you know.. use my body...”, a meek whimper escaped his lips as he thought of villains forcing themselves on him. “Why didn't they just kill me? Why take me in the first place?”
The doctor hummed as if he were considering the question for the first time, “If you aren't capable of remembering your time in captivity, there's no way of knowing for certain.”
Izuku started trembling, glancing down at his lower body, tears welling up in his eyes.
“I didn't mean to alarm you. I doubt there was any sexual activity done to you; we would have picked up traces of sperm if that were the case.”, the doctor rushed to reassure the crying child.
Izuku didn't stop sobbing, but he felt somewhat relieved that whatever tests were done came out in his favor. The doctor let the boy cry for a few minutes before handing him a tissue, which Izuku graciously accepted before using it.
“Before I let your nurse and mother know that you've woken up, I want to ask you one last time...”, any sympathy that may have been there before was suddenly completely absent in the man's tone & demeanor. Izuku flinched under the glare of the doctor's glasses as he was asked, “Do you remember your time with the villains? Do you remember anything at all?”
Izuku had to ponder that question for a while before he could answer. He started mulling over whatever memories are buried in the back of his mind, trying to dig up whatever information he could. Just when he thought he remembered something, a sharp stab of piercing pain would make him forget the obscure image. When he was positive that there was no use trying to recall his past in his current condition, he responded with, “No, sir.”
The doctor gave Izuku one last pensive look before startling the boy with a clap of his hands, “Alrighty then! That's too bad! In that case, I guess we should move on.”, the shift in attitude once again caught Izuku by surprise. “Continue to get some bed rest while I fetch the others.”, the doctor gave an offhanded wave of goodbye before leaving behind a baffled patient.
Not too long afterwards, an equally short and stout woman came barreling into the room. As soon as Izuku saw her, he instantly recognized her as his mother. “Mom!”, the two Midoriyas crushed eachother in a hug of ugly crying.
“Izuku, my little boy, I thought I lost you!”, Inko shouted in between sobs. She felt her son's shaking body in her arms and began rubbing circles on his back in order to soothe him. “You're safe now. You're back.”, she failed to speak in an even tone when she was quaking just as much.
Izuku sniffled as he tried to stop crying and pulled away from the hug, he wanted to see his mother's face again. His heart ached when he could see the wrinkles and streaks of gray in her hair that had come with both stress & age. As much as Izuku would hate to admit it, he felt like he was comparing the present state of his mother to a picture in her high school yearbook.
“I'm so sorry, mom. I'm sorry!”, that earned him another lung crushing hug. He wanted to apologize even more, but her hushes and suffocating grip made it hard to do anything but whimper.
“No, Izuku. I'M sorry. I should have been more watchful, I shouldn't have taken my eye off you in the park-”, Inko attempted to shift the blame onto herself in order to ease her son's misplaced guilt.
“Mom, it's not your fault! You couldn't have known!”, Izuku protested.
The doctor from earlier sighed as he watched the exchange from the doorway. “I hate to interrupt your..”, he had to clear his throat before finding the right word, “..'beautiful' reunion.. but I believe there's still much that needs to be done.”
Inko turned to face the doctor as she dried her eyes, “Oh, that's right. I'm sorry. Please, go ahead.”
A nurse soon followed suite to do another medical evaluation on Izuku. She checked him for scrapes and injures again, held his hand as he learned to walk again, and took an x-ray. Izuku felt a twinge of pain in his chest when they gave him the news that he's still missing an additional toe joint. Lastly, they finished the checkup with procedural examinations such as checking his heartbeat and weighing him.
“I don't see any need to keep him here for another night, unless you want to be extra cautionary. Otherwise, Izuku is free to go home.”, the nurse smiles brightly as she shares the results with the Midoriyas.
“That's wonderful!”, Inko beams as well while her hand tightens around Izuku's.
“The only requirement would be for Izuku to wait on a interview with a detective. However, we may be able to prolong that until tomorrow since Izuku has been through enough for one day.”, the nurse adds as an afterthought.
Inko looks to Izuku for his input, but the boy is too busy yawning to respond. “We would appreciate it if you set up that appointment for tomorrow.”, Inko decides to do the speaking.
“Very well. In that case, you're good to go.”
Another requirement by the hospital was for Izuku to be brought out in a wheelchair. In the time it took for them to do so, he was out like a light and slept the whole ride home afterwards. Inko didn't want to wake him, but couldn't leave him in the car either, so she gently shook his shoulder.
Izuku lolled his head with a moan, indicating that he was slowly waking up. Inko suppressed a giggle, “Come on, sleepyhead. We're home.”
When her son didn't respond, she switched to bribery. “If you get up, I can make you Katsudon for dinner.”
THAT got a response out of Izuku. The boy jumped out of his seat like he received an electric shock, the mention of his favorite food being the perfect jolt. “Really?!”, his mouth started watering at the memory of its aroma. His stomach then growled when he realized he hadn't eaten since the hospital.
Inko couldn't contain her laughter anymore, “You certainly remembered Katsudon, didn't you?”
Izuku bashfully rubbed the back of his neck, “Does that mean you aren't making it?”, disappointment leaking through his tone.
Inko rolled her eyes at how dramatic he was being over food, “Of course I'll make it. Just go get washed up beforehand.”
Izuku smiled in response with a small nod. The expression slowly drooped when he stepped out of the car and found no recollection of the house they were at. “Did.. Did we move?”, he hesitantly asked.
Inko's prior carefree attitude also faded away when reality returned, “You don't remember what home looks like, sweetie?”
Izuku let his shoulders sag as he admitted, “No..”
Inko had to blink back tears as she nodded in understanding. “Well, it's not like you can pick and choose what comes back to you..”, she then unlocked the door so they could enter.
When she flicked on the lights, some of the interior looked vaguely familiar. “I kinda remember these rooms though..”, he felt the need to let his mom know in hopes that it would cheer her up.
“Do you want me to show you around?”, Inko was also uncertain of what to say or do.
After a brief second of consideration, Izuku shook his head. “I think I can manage. Thanks though.”
“O- Okay then.. Let me know if you need any help though.”, Inko reluctantly allowed her son to wander deeper into the household.
Izuku furrowed his brows as he tried to familiarize himself with his surroundings. The living room looked like a brand new location while the kitchen was a place he knew like the back of his hand. When he entered his bedroom, he instantly recalled his praise for the number one hero named All Might, it would be hard not to with all the merchandise. Eventually, he found his way to the bathroom.
It was odd, looking in the mirror, he barely recognized himself. The color of his hair was the same green color as his mother's, only a darker shade. He'd be able to see the resemblance easily in his eyes as well, but a cupped hand found his cheek where he felt like something was missing. Izuku didn't see any freckles on his mom's face, but he was shocked to not find a single one on his own. Back to the chin length hair, he had to toy with it so his right eye wouldn't be covered, the mess would need to be styled properly.
As if she were reading his thoughts, Inko appeared at the doorway to watch him inspecting it. “I could take you to get a haircut if you want.”, she suggested.
“Nah, that's okay. I kinda like it.”, Izuku ran his fingers through the curly mess, “I'll just need to smooth it out, is all.”
“Okay, sweetie.”, Inko gave him a supportive smile, “I just came to let you know that dinner should be ready in ten or fifteen minutes. You might have enough time to shower if you want.”
“Okay. Thanks, mom.”
Izuku didn't know a shower could feel so good. The warm water running along his body, the soap lapping up all the dirt that had collected during his kidnapping, and the relaxation of simply massaging his scalp with conditioner was better than the nap he had in the car. As he used a washcloth to scrub himself, he couldn't help but let his mind wander back to his discussion with the doctor though. Not a single scar, not one injury was present on his flesh. From the look of his ribs sticking out, he must have been starved most of the time, so he wouldn't have put it past villains to hurt him. Yet, he was squeaky clean, figuratively AND literally.
The more he thought about it though, the bigger chance of developing a headache he got. So, he decided to let his mind go blank during the time it would take to dry off. He didn't bother reminiscing the objects in his room, he just grabbed what he needed from the closet and got dressed.
His mother was still cooking in the kitchen when he walked in wearing a pair of All Might pajamas. She had a surprised expression when she turned around and saw his hair tied back into a bun. Her face instantly morphed into a pleasant look afterwards though, “I like what you did with your hair, it looks really nice.” Izuku smiled back, he was worried the small strands that managed to drop in front of his forehead had ruined it.
“Do you need help setting the table?”, Izuku moved to grab plates from a cabinet without waiting for an answer.
“If you don't mind.”, Inko shrugged as she went back to stirring the pot she has on the stove.
“So.. Am I gonna have to go back to school now?”, Izuku wondered how much schoolwork he'd have to catch up on.
“Well, tomorrow is the last day before summer, but you could still go if you want to. I'm sure your classmates would be delighted to see you again, especially Katsuki-”, Inko didn't get to finish her sentence when Izuku dropped a cup. Glass shattered all over the floor.
“I- I'm sorry!”, Izuku cried out as he scrambled to pick up the shards.
“No, no! That's okay! Leave it. I'll get a broom to sweep it up. I don't want you cutting your hands.”, Inko pulled him away before there could be any sort of accident.
Izuku was about to protest, but sighed instead. “Sorry.. I just.. I remembered something.”
Inko raised an eyebrow in interest, “About what?”
Izuku thought about his classmates, memories flooding his system of how they would mercilessly bully him for missing an extra toe joint, for being quirkless.
“I just.. I would rather not go to school tomorrow if that's okay. Could I just get my work sent home to do?”, Izuku turned away so his mother couldn't see the tears threatening to spill.
Inko stepped forward to hug him, but drew short. “Okay.”, was all she could manage.
Izuku was deep in thought at that moment. It was like putting together pieces of a puzzle. People with quirks, they essentially had superpowers. In a world where people can fly or stick to walls, superheroes and supervillains were bound to come into fruition. Izuku idled All Might, the most powerful one, just like every kid his age did. Only, it was such a powerful person that would create such stipulation behind the need of a quirk for becoming a hero. Izuku didn't have a quirk, so he was ridiculed by his classmates and alone for villains to grab. Now, in this kitchen, he couldn't help but wonder..
“Mom. Do you think I can still become a hero?”
Thanks to everyone that's following this story and commented so far, I also really appreciate the kudos!
I know these first two chapters were pretty short, and the next one probably will be too, but I promise to try and make them longer after that.
It's empty. The lack of presence in that damned seat ahead of him hadn't changed. Auntie Inko had told the old hag about Deku getting rescued, who in turn told Katsuki. Even if he hadn't known beforehand, every news channel was reporting it. So, why the hell isn't the damn nerd in his seat? Did the bastard think they could avoid eachother? They live on the same block!
Katsuki clenched the fabric of his school uniform, subtly wiping off the sweat that had begun secreting from his hands. It was hard to reign in his anger, especially without any clarity.
Thinking back to the day that it happened, he felt a twinge of something in his chest. Katsuki remembered getting fed up with Deku's shit, a perfectly understandable reaction. Deku is such a crybaby though, he just had to run off and get kidnapped by villains. It isn't Katsuki's fault that the nerd fucked up so badly. So why does he have that damn pain in his chest?!
Whatever the reason, he figures the feeling will go away once he sees the nerd is perfectly fine. The glare he had on the empty seat shifts to a clock mounted above the classroom's door. As soon as the bell rings, he plans on going to the bastard's house, there's no way Deku can avoid him that way. It feels like another five years pass as he watches time tick by. Katsuki began tapping his foot on the floor, getting impatient.
Katsuki is too fixated on his chance to leave, that he barely hears the teacher say something about their choices for career paths. It wouldn't matter anyways, he plans on going to U.A so he can become the number one hero. No more children would be kidnapped once he secures his place as a pro hero, not even All Might was able to make that change, but Katsuki knows he's strong enough to do it.
"What the hell?", Katsuki hates to admit he was startled out of his thoughts by an eruption of paper and quirks. Every student was firing off their ability, no matter how lame some of them are. The teacher reminds them that quirk usage without a hero license is prohibited before carrying on with whatever other shit he has to say.
A few of the papers landed on his desk, so Katsuki decides to look at them, figuring it can pass the time if he has some reading material. That option is instantly dropped when he realizes they're shitty career forms. The thought then occurs to him that he should probably bring one to Deku's house, the nerd might need it.
When the bell finally rang, Katsuki used a single strap to hoist his backpack over his shoulder. As he made a beeline for the door, a bunch of extras rushed to keep up. "Oi, leave me alone.", he didn't want to be bothered with the shmucks trying to mooch off of his talent, not today anyway.
"Huh? But I thought we had plans to hang out after school.", an extra with a useless quirk that gives him freakishly long fingers had the gull to keep pestering Katsuki.
"I changed my mind. Buzz off.", Katsuki huffed as the group of extras gave eachother contemplative looks. "I said.. FUCK OFF!", releasing some of that bottled up anger was apparently all it took to make the morons go away.
"A- Alright, man.. See ya around?", none of them waited on a response as they walked away.
Katsuki huffed with a roll of his eyes, "Good riddance."
The old hag would probably complain if he didn't let her know that he plans on visiting Auntie & Deku. The last thing Katsuki wants to deal with right now is being nagged by his mother. "Tch.", Katsuki dug into a pants pocket to fish his cellphone out.
It just took a quick text to let her know and then he muted the volume so he wouldn't have to be annoyed by any responsive notifications. Katsuki preferred to use the rest of his walk to the house as a chance to delve deep into his thoughts.
The summer would give him a few months to train before going to take the exam in order to enroll at U.A. He'd already been doing morning jogs and stuck to a strick diet. The real results he hoped to get were from constantly working his upper shoulders to account for the power behind his quirk's blast.
Figuring out his quirk's in and outs was like learning about puberty, an extremely awkward transistion. The sweat he secretes isn't normal, it's a form of nitroglycerin. That's why he's capable of creating explosions from his palms. It takes a lot to control the sizes, but he's learned how to differentiate between a firecracker or a grenade's radius.
Then there's shitty Deku, who doesn't have a quirk at all and still claims he can get into U.A. That's what Katsuki remembers anyway, there's a chance that the nerd finally came to his senses after being kidnapped. That bastard.. he'll probably still try to apply for Yuuei.
Growing up, both of them idolized All Might. Katsuki remembers the difference though; he personally looks up to the hero because of his ability to never lose. He never really got Deku's reasoning, but he knows his is right since the nerd wouldn't have been kidnapped if he hadn't lost to the villains, the loser probably didn't even put up a fight at all. There's that pain in his chest again, dammit, he hates how he feels when thinking about Deku.
At this point, Katsuki is trudging forward like a locomotive powered by anger. There's so many things he wants to say to the nerd, so much that he wants to rant about. The least the bastard could have done is come to fucking school! Then Katsuki could have spent his day doing something else! But no, he has to inconvenience himself to check on useless Deku.
Finally, he gets to the house. Instead of ringing the doorbell, he knocks. Well, it was more like slamming his fist against the door, but he had a desire to hit something really hard. When nobody bothered to answer, that urge made him rapidly knock even harder. "I swear, whenever that nerd shows his dumb face, I'll-"
The door opened.
Katsuki had to swallow an instantly formed lump in his throat, whatever insulting words he intended to shout were completely forgotten. In front of him is Izuku Midoriya, but it's somehow a completely different person. The lack of freckles and baby fat reminded him how much time had really passed since the kidnapping. Even though the hair was tied into a bun, Katsuki could tell that it had grown tremendously. If they were only a bit older, there would have probably been wrinkles too. As much as Katsuki wanted to stare at the nerd's face though, his gaze kept wandering to the skeletal frame that Auntie would no doubt fix with her cooking, he looked forward to seeing that weight put back on.
"Wh- What are you d- doing here?", the nerd hadn't lost that annoying stutter though. Still, the damn nerve to skip class AND ask that question when Katsuki had gone out of his way to stop by. While not reaching its peak, that rage from earlier reignited.
"HAH?!", the ashy blonde expected it to be some kindof joke. When the bastard didn't say otherwise or even apologize, Katsuki forced his way through the door. "It's rude not to invite your visitors inside, dumbass.", he added a bite to his words to show how pissed off he is.
A soft 'eep' was barely audible behind him, but Katsuki was close enough to hear it. If the nerd's appearance is the only thing that changed about him, then that was a relieving thought. Still, somebody needs to remember their damn manners, so Katsuki proceded to kick his shoes off at the welcome mat.
Auntie must have heard the door clicking when Deku shut it, because she almost instantly hollared from another room, "Who was at the door, Izuku?"
Katsuki expected the bastard to refer to him as 'Kacchan', but had to give a bewildered glance when Deku didn't shout anything back at all. The nerd looked like he was deep in thought, but that was impossible without any damned muttering, so Katsuki figured the idiot just zoned out.
Before either boy could say anything, Auntie Inko was entering the room to see for herself. A curious look morphed into a warm motherly smile, "Katsuki! What a pleasant surprise!"
"Hey, Auntie.", Katsuki gave a curt nod. He should have figured that wouldn't be enough, but a bone crushing hug caught him by surprise anyways.
"It's so good to see you!", she exclaims before releasing him so he can go back to breathing. "I wish I knew you were coming over; I would have prepared something for you to eat.", Auntie began to fret over him.
"It's okay, Auntie. I'm not really hungry anyway.", Katsuki tries to be as politely assuring as he can. He doesn't really know why he even bothers, because she's shaking her head the whole time he tries to object.
"Nonesense! I'm sure I can manage to make you a snack. You can share it with Izuku if you don't want it all.", her version of a compromise leaves no room for argument.
With a defeated sigh, Katsuki gives in. "That'd be nice. Thanks, Auntie.", he's relieved when she gives him a content smile in return.
"It may take a while. Why don't you boys go play in Izuku's room while you wait? I'll be sure to let you know when it's ready.", Auntie Inko speaks as she moves towards the kitchen.
"Mom..", Deku looks like he wants to protest but doesn't say anything else. With his own sigh of defeat, he gestures for Katsuki to follow him. "C- Come on, th- then.", his annoying nervous stutter returns whenever they're alone again.
"Oi, why didn't you answer your mother when she asked who's at the door?", an intimidating edge to Katsuki's tone bled through as he thought about the disrespect Deku has for ignoring her. Auntie Inko doesn't deserve a brat treating her like shit, she's a good woman that went through a lot of grief during his kidnapping.
"I..", Deku looks hesitant to answer at first. Katsuki is about to yell at him for being a twat, but the nerd then develops a serious expression that makes the blonde's jaw clench. "I'm sorry.. but I didn't remember your n- name."
"..What?", Katsuki couldn't contain his perturbed response. He wanted to blow up on the bastard, he started thinking it meant the nerd was still looking down on him so much that he'd completely forgotten their childhood friendship. Perhaps Deku was trying to pull one over on Katsuki or make a shitty joke; but then it clicked, the strange way he answered the door and now this.. "Do you have amnesia?", Katsuki asked.
Deku visibly flinched at the word 'amnesia', like it was an insult. Then, he gave a slow nod. "Kinda. I recongized your f- face and even.. I even r- remember some s- stuff that happened between us.. but I couldn't remember your n- name.", the nerd tried to elaborate.
The way Deku's body language stiffened and slouched when he brought up having some memories made Katsuki feel that ache in his chest again. "What kind of stuff do you remember?", the blonde was curious.
Deku swallowed hard before looking Katsuki in the eyes, "You used to bully me."
Katsuki had felt that pain in his chest many times before, but it never hurt this badly. "I..", he shook off whatever that annoying feeling is before snarling, "What the fuck are you talking about?"
Sure, Katsuki would sometimes shove him really hard or burn him with a small explosion, but that was always for a good reason. Deku would always follow him around like the other extras, trying to mooch off of his raw talent; Katsuki just wanted to make the nerd leave him alone, sometimes that recquired physical methods. Plus, the bastard always looked down on him, as if they were equals or, hell, like the quirkless prick was better. No, Deku is just a pebble in his path to kick aside. If the nerd wanted to call that bullying, then he can be mistaken.
"You called me 'worthless' and 'useless' because of something I have no control over! Just because I'm g- genetically quirkless doesn't mean I want to be! Even with am- amnesia, I remember one thing: regardless of my d- disability, I always aspired to b- become a hero.", Deku dared to yell back.
Katsuki struggled to keep his hands at his sides, the urge to let off a few explosions making him angrier. "You fucking idiot! It's because you're quirkless that the villains were able to kidnap you! What makes you think you'd be able to save anyone if you're the one who needs saving?!", Katsuki argued back.
"I was just a kid! The whole p- point of going to a hero school is learning h- how to fight! Just because I'm not ready right NOW, doesn't mean I won't ever be!", Deku looks like he's on the brink of tears. Some things never change, the nerd is just as emotional as he was back then.
Katsuki frowns as he ponders the nerd's argument, he does have a point. "Does that mean you're actually going to get off your ass and do some training?", the blonde crosses his arms as he carefully watches Deku for an answer through body movement or vocalization. One of the reasons Katsuki was always so aggravated by Deku's aspiration is that he always ever said he wanted to be a hero, but never actually built any muscle or learned any fighting style.
With a look of determination, Deku folded his arms too. "I've got all summer to prepare for U.A's Entrance Exam.", he acts like that's the only thing he has to say to confirm he intends to properly train.
Katsuki gives Deku one last hard look before letting himself fall into a casual posture again. "Tch.. And what about school? Don't you have a lot that you missed?", he figured there should be a requirement to go through all the years regardless of age.
"My mom had the school send us all the work I need to do.", Deku let his arms fall limp at his side, "With enough cramming, I think I'll be able to catch up in time."
"Not without a fucking tutor.", Katsuki retorted.
"I don't need a tutor-", Deku started to babble but there's already been enough of that shit.
"I meant me. I'll help you study. You can even use my notes if you want.", Katsuki rolled his eyes at the other boy's ignorance. Deku looked surprised by the offer, which only made Katsuki scoff before brushing past him. The two had been loitering in the hallway this whole time, it was stupid.
"Th- Thanks.. Um, do I call you K- Katsuki like my mom, or..?", his first name felt weird rolling off of the nerd's tongue and he presumed it would sound even stranger if Deku called him by his last name.
So, with a reluctant sigh, he gave his suggestion. "Just call me Kacchan. It's the nickname you used to call me by.", he tried to play it off like no big deal but felt like he'd soon be regretting the choice.
"A nickname? Were we that close?", Deku looked like a puzzled puppy with his head slightly cocked to the right. It would have been funny, if it weren't under the circumstances that he needed to ask that question.
Katsuki found himself staring at all the All Might merchandise in Deku's bedroom. Posters, toys, bedsheets & pillowcases, all the way down to wallpaper made it look very much like a kid's room. Katsuki didn't know if it was because of that reminder how much time passed since the kidnapping or the loss of memory Deku had to endure, but he suddenly felt very solemn.
"We were childhood friends. We're, um, we're neighbors.. so, we grew up together.", Katsuki had to close his eyes when he felt them watering a little. Dammit, there was no reason to cry. What the fuck is wrong with him lately?
"D- Do you have a nickname for me?", the timid voice sounded closer behind him now.
The ache in Katsuki's chest returned full force; he figured it was just a symptom of holding back his tears, nothing more. Yet, he couldn't bare to utter the nickname 'Deku' outloud for some odd reason. The Kanji in Izuku's name had been part of a joke pertaining to his quirklessness.. it meant useless. After Katsuki had been accused of bullying, he couldn't help but wonder if that's how the nerd would feel upon hearing 'Deku' again. The completely oblivious greenette was starting to show a side of himself that Katsuki second guessed nuking and he didn't want to change that with a mistaken memory recollection.
So, Katsuki rearranged the Kanji once more. "You're Dekiru.. that means 'you can do it'..", the blonde found the courage to turn around and face the nerd after that. When he saw the dork standing there with his mouth agape, Katsuki had to roll his eyes. A hint of regret made him poke an accusing finger into the other boy's chest, "That means you'd better not slack off on any of your training! If you fuck up, you don't deserve the name!"
"O- Of course!", Dekiru stammered out quickly. After a small initial panic, he gave Katsuki a bashful smile. "Thanks, Kacchan."
"Tch.", Katsuki couldn't bare to look at that stupidly optimistic face anymore. "Don't mention it, nerd.", so he discarded the topic and moved towards a stack of schoolbooks on Dekiru's desk.
The collection of textbooks vary in nearly every subject, Katsuki didn't even know where to begin. Instead, he decided to simply ask, "Is there any particular subject that's harder for you than others?"
The nerd gave a faint-hearted laugh, his eyes wandering elsewhere. "Well.. The truth is that I haven't even started any of them yet. Most of my day was spent at the p- police station where I tried to think of anything that could help with my c- case. I only got a headache from it, so I was taking a nap until you got here.", it was a shock that the nervous explanation wasn't a compilation of murmured stutters.
Katsuki found the idiocy humorous enough to snort, but not to actually laugh. "So you're saying that was all a complete waste of time.", the blonde sighed as he grabbed a textbook off the stack's top, "The police are only proving those politics people right about heroes replacing them in law enforcement. What's the point of interviewing you when they already caught the bastards responsible?"
It was meant to be a rhetorical question, but the nerd didn't seem to grasp that concept. "There could be accomplices, Kacchan. We also don't know the motive behind them taking me. I haven't gotten any injuries for it to be anything as little as sick pleasure.", what started as an annoying response that Katsuki was prepared to tune out, ended up catching his attention towards the end.
Katsuki hadn't even considered the repercussions that could come from being a villain's victim. The thought of Deku, er, Dekiru being tortured.. it sickened his stomach. While the reality being the nerd came out of it unscathed is a fortunate turn of events, it begged the question how such a thing is even possible. "You mean they didn't do anything to you?", he had to be sure he heard correctly.
Dekiru shrugged, "I was just as surprised."
Katsuki wanted to dig a little deeper, but gave a committable hum instead. He hoped the nerd would be willing to share details with him and discuss it more in the future, but also knew better than to pry any further after he'd been through so much of that with a detective not too long ago.
It was strange, Katsuki would have never imagined he'd be this lenient with the nerd. The thought that the kidnapping changed Deku as a person crossed his mind. If that were the case, maybe it would be for the better.. this new person, Dekiru, maybe it was for the best. Just as fast as the idea dawned in his head, it faded into oblivion. Sure, Katsuki noticed a few differences, but there was also a lot that stayed the same. Besides, Auntie would be able to tell if there was anything notable about her son's behavior.
"You said you got a nap earlier. In that case, let's knock out this book, even if it takes all night. Then, I want you to wake up early enough to jog with me tomorrow. If you have to set an alarm or something, do it.", Katsuki tossed the textbook to Dekiru who nearly fumbled it like a football.
And so, that's how they spent the next six hours. The two covered all of the material while munching on some snacks that Inko later brought for them to eat. The suggestion to have a sleepover somehow came about at some point, but Katsuki politely declined before heading home.
Shadows wrapped around Musutafu like a blanket, the starry night not leaving much for someone to see. Katsuki felt like he needed to stay on guard in the darkness; villains were no doubt plotting within the crevices of it.
Katsuki has no idea how right he is..
Elsewhere, the husky doctor that treated Izuku Midoriya sits within an equally dim atmosphere. The only light illuminating the space is an adjustable worklamp that shines over an operating table. An unmoving specimen is sprawled out so it can properly be given surgery. A pair of tweezers prod at a piece of brain matter that's currently exposed from the subject's head. Occasionally, certain cells trigger a beak filled with sharp teeth to snap shut and reopen, it's like a deadly game of operation.
A few feet away, an array of monitors flicker through different recordings. A few show sectors of the hospital he works in while others monitor traffic cams. Admist them all, one stays the same. A black box with the words 'Audio Only' is constantly turned on. The doctor doesn't mind the watchful eye as long as it's someone that appreciates his craft.
"Doctor Daruma..", a familiar voice from the speakers that are installed indicates that he was correct about having an audience. "I just received a report from my connections in the police precinct. It would seem your report lines up. Izuku Midoriya is blissfully unaware of his time in captivity.", the voice of his Sensei sounds pleased.
"That's good news. I was a little worried that seeing me might have triggered something.", Daruma Ujiko returns the favor of a pleasant tone.
The time then comes to swap the tweezers with a tenacula. The Nomu crows softly like a child stirring in their slumber; Daruma can't help but guffaw at how adorable it is. By the time he's finished, it'll be a masterpiece.
"I see the Nomu is progressing nicely. Do you believe it will be able to make your quota?", Sensei crackles through the microphone with his usual menacing undertones. Daruma still hasn't been able to figure out if it was a result from one of his master's stolen quirks or just the aura emitting from a sinister being.
Still, Daruma can't give a positive answer to his Sensei; the chances of being punished are far greater if he isn't capable of keeping a promise. Rather than rush the project and result in failure or lie about the chances of its completion status, he takes the gamble of requesting more time.
"If you want it to satisfy Shigaraki's demands AND be capable of matching All Might in combat, then it may take a while longer. At least extend my time beyond the summer.", he crosses his fingers in hopes that he'll be granted permission.
A sense of dread emits from the screen when a response isn't immediate. Daruma contemplates apologizing, but his Sensei beats him to the punch who speaks next. "Very well.", the fog of fear lifts, now replaced by relief.
"Thank you, master. You won't regret your decision.", Daruma pauses his surgery to bow to the screen. He knows there's a one way camera installed, allowing all movements on his end to be monitored.
All For One doesn't choose to acknowledge the gesture, instead switching the conversational topic. "And what of the second Titan experiment? Have you managed to find a suitable candidate?", this question fortunately sounds like a request instead of a demand.
Daruma is once again relieved to have some satisfying results he can share with his master. "Oh, yes. I've been watching them for a while now. The best part is.. I think this one will be much more inclined to volunteer rather than need additional legwork like young Midoriya.", his eyes wander to one of the other monitors.
A single screen displays the live feed of a laptop webcam. Sitting in front of it is a young girl.
"She'll make an excellent Titan."
Wow, this actually ended up being longer than I expected. That's a good thing though, cause'.. Remember what I said last chapter about the next one being longer? Well, that's because I was originally planning to make that the Entrance Exam with a small time skip over the summer, but I may have at least one more chapter in between to show a little bit of Izuku's training. I had a lot of fun writing his interaction with Katsuki and figured it'd be nice to do that again before jumping into a heap of craziness.
Again, thanks to everyone that's still reading and thanks for all the kudos! I also wanna shoutout to Stephano for leaving another comment, I always like reading other people's thoughts on stuff!
Until next time, best regards!
Footfalls synchronized with heartbeats, each rugged thump as equally aggressive. The steady pound of steps echoed in their ears. As they had planned, Kacchan & Dekiru started their summer with a regular routine of morning jogs together. At first, Izuku had some difficulty keeping pace with Kacchan, but that managed to change with time. After his stamina improved, Izuku started jogging alongside the other boy. That soon developed into the two racing eachother every now and then. It was a great improvement in a matter of weeks.
Izuku felt a bead of sweat roll down his forehead before splattering to his chin. The slight tickle of trickling water made him tilt his head to catch a brief sight of the ground blurring below him. It didn't help that the blistering heat of the sun made it feel like a trek through the desert. However, it also made the end goal of going home where it's air conditioned all the more worth it.
During one of their morning commutes, Izuku noticed a particular beach they usually pass. The shore is completely covered in various kinds of garbage. The mess ranges from trash bags to huge chunks of scrap metal and even furniture such as a couch & fridge. It looked like nobody had bothered to clean it up; it was more likely that a person would contribute to littering first.
So, Izuku added an additional part of his training to get stronger. On their way back, Izuku would let Kacchan go home without him and begin picking up the garbage. It was a very tiring and tedious task, but the muscle growth had become apparent as more got cleaned up. Izuku liked to think of it as killing two birds with one stone, so to speak. Not only is he training his body to get stronger, but he's doing a civil service.
The muscle cramps from lifting heavy material there made it difficult to keep going to the gym, but Kacchan would give him an earful any time he tried skipping out. After a while, he managed to convince both the explosive blonde and his mother to let him get a few dungbells for that aspect of training to be done at home.
Between those physical practices in the morning and the academic tutoring at night, Izuku's schedule had become completely booked. The greenette had started developing bags under his eyes at one point, but his mother didn't let that last with all the scoldings about getting enough bed rest.
However, it just wasn't enough. Izuku still needed to find himself a fighting style and begin learning it. All Might is an impressive hero, but he doesn't know any martial arts; not that it'd be necessary when his punches can obliterate an entire neighborhood. The symbol of peace did happen to have a sidekick at some point who shows incredible combat skills, but Izuku had a hard time finding any recordings of their battles.
Just as he was about to draw a blank and consider taking regular karate classes, Izuku happened to discover an underground hero with their own fighting style. It was just as difficult to find videos with his villain fights, but the fluid movements had grasped his attention. The hero's quirk was also an interesting aspect; the ability to render a person quirkless. Izuku smiled as he compared himself in that regard, he could mimic a style that had to do with quirkless combat.
Izuku spent countless hours searching for results under the hero's name: Eraserhead.
After doing some research, Izuku learned about the underground hero's weapon of choice. Eraserhead's fighting form had a lot to do with his capture cloth. The material whipped around like it had a mind of its own sometimes, and Izuku had to wonder if he'd be able to pull off such a thing. Then there was the issue of finding a cloth made of the same material. Izuku was baffled as he searched up information about carbon nanofibers being woven into a steel wire alloy.
Sometimes, you just have to improvise. Izuku started rifling through storage boxes in the attic, figuring there would be something he could use.
He ended up finding a set of chains, giving him the vague memory of a time that his father had been around. His dad planned to build him a swingset in the backyard, but left overseas before he could. It didn't matter now since the chains would be too heavy to maneuver anyways. There was also some fishing line, but that would be too thin to use.
Eventually, Izuku settled on something. In a box full of winter objects, he found a ragged red scarf. The material is thick but also lightweight enough to move around with relative ease. Izuku also recalled seeing Eraserhead where his capture cloth like a scarf in interviews before, so this didn't seem all that different.
His mom had made a big deal out of it when she saw him come back down with the scarf on. Apparently she had knitted it for him when he was younger and the thing had been forgotten about until now. Izuku let her gush over it and snap a few pictures before heading back out to train.
Does getting tangled up in your own scarf count as training? No? Okay then. This might take him a while to get used to.
Izuku stopped trying to pull off the quick backsnaps and instead starting following the video step by step in slow motion as if it were a tutorial. Consistently copying the movements for a few hours every day would gradually ingrain the technique into his muscle memory. Finally, he was able to pull off a similiar move without too many mistakes.
When he wasn't trying to mimic Eraserhead's combat, he spent time familiarizing himself with the scarf. Izuku closed his eyes as he felt the weight in his hands. The soft fabric touching his fingertips could hurt with enough force, almost like water and the properties of falling from too high could make it feel like impacting with cement. Running his hands along the length of it, he memorized the size and how much of a closequarters weapon it would need to be.
At some point, Izuku started practicing his own implemented capability. A couple of empty soda cans were propped up like a row of targets. The goal is to wrap the scarf around one and yank it into his hand, almost like an extra appendage. Izuku figured this would be a good skill to learn since it could be used to snatch an enemy's knife or gun if they were to have one. It took a number of tries high in the thousands, but he started to get the hang of it. The hardest part, believe it or not, is actually catching the object when it's pulled towards him.
He often came back really late, so Izuku was thankful to always find a hot meal waiting for him. Kacchan had shared some dietary recipes with Inko, so gaining fat never clashed with building muscle. The basic foods it consisted of were fish and chicken, but the occasional acception of rice was allowed.
The daily regimen sorta looked like this: Morning jog to cover cardio, beach cleaning and then weights training, followed by catching up on schoolwork and then scarf combat practicing. His mom tries hard to make sure he doesn't miss any meals, so he often eats a combination of breakfast and lunch as he studies. Dinner comes after he trains with Eraserhead's fighting style. Izuku occasionally tries to get in an extra amount of his schoolwork after supper, but Inko always forces him to get some sleep otherwise.
This routine carries on for months. Until one day, Izuku finishes discarding all of the junk left on the beach. He's laying in the sand to catch his breath when he's surprised to see Kacchan walking back. The blonde tosses the greenette a water bottle before chugging one of his own.
"Looks like you managed to actually pull it off. This place looks fucking spotless.", Katsuki doesn't sound as surprised as he looks.
Izuku is too tired to even form a coherent sentence, so he just hums in agreement. If Izuku were to be honest, he wasn't expecting to finish cleaning the beach before the Entrance Exam. Yet, here he is, a day before it to spare.
"Don't think that means you can go slacking off, douchebag!", Kacchan interrupts the boy's daydreaming by both figuratively and quite literally kicking sand in his face.
"Yeah.. Y- You're right. I shouldn't be taking any breaks just because I'm nearly done.", Izuku tightens his grip on the water bottle as he feels a newfound drive of determination. He then drinks it, enjoying the refreshing taste of something cool running down his throat.
For a moment, the two watch the sun rise over the ocean. The warmth suddenly doesn't feel so bad as it did during their run. It's actually.. quite peaceful.
"Oi, Dekiru.", the blonde tries to draw the greenette's attention again. When Izuku looks at him, he sees a serious expression that makes Kacchan's next words all the more surprising, "I want you to fight me."
"Eh? ...EEHHH?!", Izuku sits up in shock as he does a doubletake. "What? Why?", he has to wonder.
"I wanna see for myself if you've gotten stronger. If you come close to beating me, then you'll prove you have what it takes. If not.. I'm not letting you take the Entrance Exam.", Katsuki is so stern that Izuku thinks the bold statement is a potential joke. When neither boy laughs, the atmosphere shifts from a light tone to something much heavier.
"You can't stop me from taking the exam, Kacchan." , Izuku protests. He'd worked so hard this entire summer; he wouldn't let it all go to waste. Nobody can get in his way, not even Kacchan.
The blonde grits his teeth like he's biting back something he wants to say. Izuku expects some kind of retort that'll result in an argument, but Katsuki only seethes through his teeth before pointing a provoking finger. "I'm not letting you leave here without a fucking fight.", the declaration is backed up by a few sparks emitting from his other hand.
Izuku inhales deeply, holding his breath for a moment, and then breathes out. Whether it was to prepare or calm himself, he isn't so sure. "We don't have to do this..", he mumbles it since he knows it probably won't make a difference.
"Hell yeah, we do.", Kacchan somehow heard it and that probably adds fuel to whatever fire has been cooking to make him want a fight.
Izuku knows he was basically warned by Katsuki that they're gonna fight, but he still doesn't expect the blonde to come rocketing at him full force with controlled explosions to act as a means of transportation. Izuku does the only thing he can do in that moment of shock, he ducks down to avoid the incoming attack. In retrospect, he should've dodged to the right or left, but it's too late for that now.
Kacchan grounds himself into the sand upon landing, using the last of his explosions to pivot back around. Izuku is still clambering to regain his own footing when Katsuki lashes out with his leg. The wind gets knocked out of the greenette in that moment, making him cradle into a ball of pain. Kacchan looks like he isn't going to stop the assault, so Izuku makes a desperate attempt to stop it by grabbing a fistful of sand and blindly flinging it into the blonde's face.
Katsuki cries out as the sand gets in his eyes, a slur of curse words following suite. Izuku takes that opportunity to put some distance between himself and the living grenade.
Kacchan blindly lets off a controlled blast that's likely meant to stun Dekiru. The explosion misses completely since it's aimed in the wrong direction, but Izuku has to give credit to the blonde for finding a way to fight offensive while still being defensive.
Kacchan finished rubbing his eyes, blinking them to readjust his vision. The usual spark of anger in them returned when they fixated on Dekiru. Before Izuku could open his mouth to try talking him down, Katsuki winded up a right hook.
Izuku wasn't fast enough to avoid the punch, but braced himself well enough to roll with it. A warm copper taste fills his mouth; he assumes that it has to be blood. Izuku decides then to give in to the other's demands, silently agreeing to fight if that's what he wants so bad. Unfurling the scarf around his neck, Izuku takes a stance.
Izuku ducks low, going for the blonde's legs rather than trying to counter the next punch. Using the scarf to snag his leg, Kacchan gets tripped from underneath. It's Katsuki's turn to have the wind knocked out of him as he lands on his back. A grunt out of his opponent gives Izuku a small sense of satisfaction.
"What the actual fuck?", Kacchan groans from the ground.
"You're the first person to experience my fighting style.", Izuku whips and spins the cloth around each of his arms to showoff a little.
"I was wondering why you always wear that stupid fucking scarf everywhere you go.", Kacchan sits up with a toothy grin. The expression must be contagious, cause Izuku is grinning like an idiot too now.
"Well, it looks like it paid off.", Izuku shrugs. He then holds out a hand for the blonde to take, offering to help him stand back up. "Can we stop fighting now? It's leg day and you know how much that sucks. Plus I've got to finish my last essay and send it in.", Izuku tries pleading with a face he hopes looks like a begging puppy's.
"Tch.. Fine.", Kacchan reluctantly takes the other boy's hand. Once he's hoisted up, Katsuki decides he isn't finished, "But only because you've got a time limit to get that shit done."
Izuku doesn't care what the reason is, he's just thankful that he was able to break up the fight. "Are you gonna stop by later?", he figures his mom would like a notice if so.
"Nah. I've got my own shit to do. I'll see you at the Entrance Exam, nerd.", Kacchan is walking away before he even finishes speaking.
Izuku waves goodbye to his friend, "Alright. See ya then."
It takes longer than he'd like to admit for Izuku to realize they live in the same direction.
"Hey! Wait up! We're on the same block!", Izuku chases after the blonde.
I know this chapter was super short, but to be fair, I did warn you. Plus, there was quite a bit of necessary content, so I'm glad that I did it.
Next time though, I'll grace you all with a long chapter that contains the Entrance Exam!
The colossal campus buildings are as big as U.A's prestigious reputation. Izuku can't help but exhale a breath of awe; he shivers when it leaves behind a cloud of condensation. The temperature had dropped overnight, leaving behind warm summer days and beginning the dawn of chilly mornings. For once, wearing his red scarf all the time is extremely practical.
Izuku had also let his hair down, allowing the length of it to keep his head warm like a dog's coat. The only worry he had about that decision is the potential issue it could pose by draping in front of his face and concealing his line of sight. It was better than wearing one of the ridiculous beanies his mother tried to shove over his skull though.
Izuku had also adamantly refused to wear mittens, opting to shove his hands deep into the pockets of grey cargo pants. A brown leather jacket that his father used to wear is unzipped, an equally grey sweater to match his pants underneath it.
While Izuku is accordingly dressed to the weather, Kacchan stubbornly acts like he has no problem wearing a black tanktop & shorts. "It's not even that cold, ya pansy!", to quote from the source. That statement was followed by a sneeze and glare that dared Izuku to say something about it.
The two had taken the train together, making idle chitchat along the way. The two talked about manga and read the hero news together before falling into a comfortable silence. Occasionally, Kacchan would complain about the train car being too loaded, but those rants are part of his charm.
Now, here they are at U.A. The first step to take in order to become full fledged heroes.
And Izuku manages to trip...
Just as he's about to collide with the pavement, something saves him from the fate of splitting his head open. It feels like the gravity that had sent him plummeting forward completely vanished. On reflex, Izuku kicks around like someone trying to swim after getting dropped into water.
Then, someone grabs his arm and corrects his form before gravity can return. Izuku turns his head, expecting to see Kacchan, but.. from the looks of it, he was helped by a cute brunette. Wait.. a girl?!
"Sorry for using my quirk on you, but.. well, it's a bad omen to trip and fall before a big test.", she brings her hands together in an apologizing gesture. From the light blush on her cheeks, Izuku imagines she's a little embarrassed by intervening with a stranger's business.
"Ah, no! I mean, it's okay!", Izuku frantically waves his arms around as he tries to assure her that it isn't that big of a deal. "I mean, it's better that your first instinct is to help someone rather than let them trip and fall..", he awkwardly rubs the back of his neck as he tries to come up with some validation for her to feel better.
The girl looks a bit stunned at that response, but her bubbly personality soon returns full force on recovery. "Yeah, I guess I was just a bit on edge is all. This whole thing is so nerve wracking.", she anxiously giggles.
Izuku is inclined to agree, but their conversation is interrupted by Kacchan shoving his way in between them. "You're wasting time with this chick, Dekiru. We're gonna be late." , he grumbles under his breath as he heads towards the examination site.
"Ah, sorry about him. Kacchan has a bit of an acquired taste..", Izuku gives the brunette a sheepish smile and an awkward chuckle that sounds too forced.
Luckily, she waves it off without taking any offense. "It's okay; your friend has a point!", the girl then heads off towards the examination site as well. "Good luck to the both of us!", she calls over her shoulder.
"Ah, y- yeah! Th- Thanks! You t- too!", Izuku stammers out a response before realizing that he's been left alone. He sighs at his own cringe worthiness before jogging inside the building too.
It was quite the experience, like an unholy combination between dealing with the crowd of a sports stadium and waiting through the torturous line to get on an amusement park's ride. There were guides along the way to help navigate examinees accordingly to the department they wish to try out for, so that was fortunate in terms of finding the correct rooms.
The hero department was just ahead of Gen Ed's hall, with a requirement to fill out a form. The pencil they provided to Izuku hovered above the page when he spotted a blank spot where he's supposed to name his quirk. It hadn't occurred to him that they may deny him entry if he were to admit he's quirkless, but he also figured there has to be a policy in order to avoid discrimination. With hesitance, he wrote out that he's quirkless, as if it were the first time he actually accepted it.
He was then filed into a classroom with other test takers for the written portion. He didn't see Kacchan or the nice brown haired girl, so he assumed they got placed in different areas. The quiz covered quirk law and other necessary fundamental hero aspects. A time limit of one hour to cover two hundred questions stressed him out, but he managed to finish in time while filling out every one.
When they were finished, everyone got escorted to an auditorium. Izuku spotted a familiar head of pointy blonde hair and snaked his way through other examinees to get a seat next to his friend. "Kacchan! Do you think you did good on the written part?", Izuku called out to get Katsuki's attention before sitting down.
"Tch. Of course I did!", Kacchan huffed before asking, "How about you, nerd?"
"I think I did okay..", Izuku shrugged since he wasn't so confident about some of his answers.
"Then you'd better nail the practical portion.", that somehow sounded more like a threat than words of encouragement but Izuku is familiar enough with Katsuki to know he means well.
"Hey! It's you guys!", the teens are startled when somebody leans in from behind them.
Izuku puts a hand over his heart when he recognizes the girl that stopped him from falling earlier, a wave of relief washing over him.
Kacchan looked like he was about to fire off an explosion, but somehow restrained himself. "Oh.. It's just you, Chubby Cheeks..", he mumbles it like he's embarrassed to admit he was caught off guard.
Now that Kacchan mentions it, she does have an adorably round face. The girl puffs up her cheeks in a pout, only earning her the nickname even more. "My name's Ochaco Uraraka! Not Chubby Cheeks! How would you like it if I called you a pomeranian?", she crosses her arms to further emphasize her frustration.
Izuku glances at the blonde, spotting the similarities he has with the dog. The greenette earnestly tries to hold in his laugh, but ultimately fails.
"HAAHH?!", Kacchan apparently doesn't find the same humor in the comparison though.
"I'm Izuku Midoriya. The angry pomeranian is Katsuki Bakugou.", Izuku takes it upon himself to return the girl's greeting even though it's difficult to do in between laughs.
"I'll fucking kill you!", Kacchan growls like a rabid animal. Honestly, that doesn't help the situation. The empty threat reminds him of a dog's bark that has no actual bite.
It seems Uraraka can't suppress a giggle either. Once she composes herself, Uraraka tilts her head in sudden curiosity. "Wait.. I thought your name was Dekiru and his is Kacchan?", she asks.
"Don't you call me that ever again!", Katsuki yells in great offense. Uraraka isn't the only one that flinches, even Izuku is taken by surprise from the outburst.
"Uuuhh.. Those are just nicknames that we gave eachother. If you'd rather call me Dekiru too, then that's fine.", Izuku explained the honorifics.
Uraraka gives Katsuki a hard look before facing Izuku. Like slipping on a mask, she's her cheerful self again. "Yeah! I like it! Dekiru sounds like 'you can do it', which is both tough and cute!", she exclaims.
Izuku blushes at the word 'cute', forcing himself to cover his face with a makeshift shield of his arms. "Ah, well, um..", he scrambles for a way to carry on without drawing too much attention to himself. Izuku looks to Kacchan for support, but the blonde looks like he's enjoying the other boy's torment, which could probably be a form of payback for the pomeranian teasing. Yet, catching sight of Katsuki reminds him of how he got the nickname to begin with. "You're kinda right. Kacchan had the same idea when he gave me the name."
Before she can reply though, all the lights in the auditorium turn off. Any murmuring from other people starts to quiet down when a single spotlight shines onto a stage as curtains part. Standing there to give them their presentation is a pro hero that goes by the name Present Mic.
"Wow.. I don't know what I expected, but they actually have REAL heroes here to do the teaching..", Izuku marvels at the sight.
"Shaddap.", Kacchan whacks Izuku over the head to snap him out of the dazed state.
"Welcome to today's live performance! Everybody say HEY!!", the hero enthusiastically shouts at the audience. Present Mic is either using his quirk to amplify his voice or the strange speaker mechanism around his neck. Regardless, the crowd is completely silent in response, as if they didn't even hear it.
"Well, that's cool, listeners!", he plays it off with utmost confidence anyways. "I'm here to present you with the guidelines of your practical! Are you ready?!", he chooses to answer for everyone this time to save himself from any embarrassment, "YEEAAAHH!!"
"What a douchebag.. Who wears sunglasses indoors?", Kacchan grumbles insults under his breath. Izuku suppresses a sigh at his friend's antics, already used to them after going through it the entire summer day after day. If anything though, he expected Kacchan to joke about the hero's cockatoo pointed hair or leather getup, not sunglasses. Looks like the firecracker still has some surprises in him afterall.
"This is how the test will go, my dear listeners! You'll be experiencing ten minute long trials in a cityscape environment. After this presentation, you'll each head to your assigned testing location. Consecutive I.D numbers will be sent to different sites!", he begins to explain the upcoming exam.
"That must be so kids from the same middle schools can't help eachother out, yeah?", Kacchan glances to Izuku. The greenette can't really tell if it's meant to be rhetorical or not so he justs nods in response.
"Each site will be filled with three kinds of faux villains. Points are awarded for each one you eliminate according to their respective difficulty levels. That's your goal, listeners! Take down as many as you can!", Present Mic gestures with his hands in an extravagant manner as he describes the exam.
A few rows ahead of him, Izuku is surprised to see someone shoot their hand into the air in an attempt to signal the hero. "May I ask a question?!", he hollars so Present Mic can hear him.
"Go ahead, listener!", Present Mic snaps his fingers into a point in time for a spotlight to shine down on the examinee.
The bespeckled boy stands up, showing how tall he really is. He's wearing a suit & tie as blue as his hair, showing how serious he's taking the whole thing. Izuku is once again surprised by the fellow test taker when he pulls a sheet of paper seamlessly out of thin air.
"There appear to be no fewer than FOUR varieties of faux villain on this handout!", Izuku scrunches up his face in confusion since he doesn't see anybody else with some kindof pamphlet. "Such a blatant error, if it is one, is highly unbecoming for Japan's top academy! We're all here today in the hopes of being molded into model heroes and you're disgracing the practice!", he continues to rant & rave while chopping his free hand in aggravation.
Izuku jumps in his seat when the guy turns around with an accusing finger, "And you two! You've been whispering to eachother this entire time! If this is some kindof game to you, then please leave immediately!"
Kacchan leans forward as if he's getting into a challenging stance. "HAAHH?! The fuck did you say to me, four eyes?! I'll come down there and-", Izuku quickly clamps a hand over the blonde's mouth before he can spew anything else.
"We're terribly sorry!", Izuku shouts while trying to restrain Katsuki like he's a vicious creature. He has to move his hand to avoid having it bitten off, so Kacchan may as well be one.
Luckily, Present Mic decides that's a good time to intervene. "Alright, alright. Everybody settle down.", he tries to deescalate the situation. "Nice catch on the handout, but the fourth faux villain gets you zero points, it's more of an obstacle.", that explanation manages to stop the bespeckled boy from complaining any further.
"Thank you, sir! I apologize for the interruption!", and he ends that strange exchange with a deep bow.
"You're allowed to bring along whatever you want as support items, so don't worry about that! However, playing the anti-hero and attacking other examinees is strictly prohibited!", Present Mic explains the last of the rules. Kacchan grumbles at the last one, but Izuku is glad that whoever shares the same site won't have to worry about that problem.
"That's all from me! I'll leave you all now with our school motto..", Present Mic shouts in unison with a majority of the people in the auditorium, "PLUS ULTRA!"
The exam landsite was indeed plus ultra. A massive wall with iron doors made it look like a fortress or perhaps a castle where a dragon dwells. Beyond that, the tips of skyscrapers were spottable and it showed just how much dedication was put into this place.
Izuku began doing stretches in preparation. Other examinees were idling or making small talk with other applicants. The rude bespeckled boy from the auditorium was spotted at the front of the pack. However, Uraraka jogging over cleared his headspace from the nerves of having competitors.
"Looks like we got placed in the same exam site. Let's do our best out there.", the quirky brunette wishes them luck in her own enthusiastic manner.
"Ah, thanks Uraraka. You too.", Izuku returns the favor.
"BEGIN!", the gigantic gates whirring open much faster than one would expect plays a tune alongside Present Mic's booming voice.
Everyone makes a collection of noises ranging from 'Huh?' to 'Hmm?'. It's almost jarring and unbelievable when Present Mic's voice returns full force with a sense of urgency, "The test's started! Run! Run! The die is cast! Go! Start! Begin!"
Suddenly, there's a stampede of examinees trampling over one another. The crowd races forward into the makeshift city beyond the walls, some using their quirks as a means to go faster. Wasting no time, they begin destroying what appears to be robots that must be the faux villains that were mentioned during the presentation.
The tall blue haired boy uses engines in his calves to shatter a robot with one clean kick. Another examinee fires a laser from their stomach that destroys two in a row. Everybody is already earning points and Izuku hasn't even moved a step forward yet.
Shaking himself from any inner turmoil and the initial shock of a sudden start, Izuku begins to casually walk through the gate's open doors. It would do him no good to panic and flail about while looking for remaining robots, he figured it was only a matter of time before one comes to him. Instead, Izuku unfurls the scarf that's wrapped around his neck. Once the cloth is stretched out in a grip of both his hands, he's ready.
Then, as he predicted, a faux villain comes crashing through a flimsy coffee shop set piece. The machines are no doubt programmed to seek out the test takers, and here comes his first one. The robot raises one of its mechanical legs, but Izuku is already rolling beneath it to avoid a frontal attack. With one of its support limbs already lifted, it'll be easy to trip up. Izuku pulls his scarf around a back leg on the opposite side, making it lose its balance.
As the faux villain clambers about, Izuku uses what's left of the shop's broken structure to hop onto its back. The machine spins and whirs as it tries to shake the boy off, essentially turning this into a more difficult version of riding a bucking bull. To keep himself from getting knocked off and in order to maintain the upper hand, Izuku wraps his scarf around the robot's camera lens in order to blind it.
The faux villain continues skittering around, but Izuku manages to steer it somewhat by pulling in whatever direction he desires. In an attempt to crash the thing, he turns it towards another building. The robot takes some damage, but not enough to bring it down. Rubble flies into Izuku too, making it hard to hang onto the machine when it goes back to bucking up and down.
Izuku leans back with all of his weight, coming up with a last resort to destroy the robot. With an immense amount of effort, Izuku pulls the head off its base. Oil sprays from its abdomen like a brutal display of gore before the machine topples over in defeat.
Izuku falls with the force but manages to roll with it and get back on his feet. The boy's breathing had quickened, trying to appease his need for oxygen after such an overexertion. No matter how much adrenaline was pumping through him in that moment, he felt completely exhausted. Catching a quick breather, Izuku looks back to assess the damage he inflicted on the faux villain.
If he remembers the sheet he caught a glimpse of correctly, then that was just a one pointer. All that effort didn't have very much to show. This is just the beginning and he's already pushed his body to its limit. Strained muscles cry out in protest, the cramping of them making it difficult to start running forward for more.
Cutting through an alley, Izuku searches for any remaining robots. Even with the shortcut, he's late to the fight. Scrap is strewn across the landscape, leaving a wake of destruction. Small fires and piles of rubble cover his path as he parkours through it all in hopes of finding another robot worth any number of points.
A small hope blossoms in his heart when he hears the mechanical whirring of one. That excitement dies when he finds the source. A three pointer lays on its back like a handicapped turtle, its legs kicking slowly as its remaining power drains from small sparks in exposed places. He doesn't know if the faux villain is even worth finishing off, but he doesn't want to waste any time trying. Instead, Izuku sprints off once more.
"FIVE MINUTES REMAINING!", Present Mic makes an announcement from overhead. Half the time limit has already passed and Izuku only managed to get one point. He can't help but panic, worrying that he won't be able to get enough in order to make it into the hero course.
Izuku started to wonder about the other candidates. Nobody knows the score required to pass the exam, so maybe it's average to get a low number of points. Such a large layout with a limited amount of time is likely meant to make the test difficult, so U.A might understand the lack of points. The risk is too high to take that chance though. Kacchan has probably destroyed dozens of the robots and he wouldn't quit despite that fact. So.. Izuku won't quit either!
He keeps moving forward, and it's then that he spots a purple haired girl with earphone jacks dangling from her earlobes. She looks preoccupied with a two pointer, so he worries that she doesn't see the one pointer sneaking up behind her. On an act of instinct to save her, he pushes the girl away and takes the blunt of a metal appendage. If he wasn't certain the school has safety measures, Izuku would think it managed to break a rib.
The one pointer isn't finished though, it starts to tread towards the downed greenette. Just as he thinks it's about to attack, an earsplitting shockwave ripples through it. The machine explodes on the spot. Izuku lets out a breath he didn't realize he was holding in, relief spreading through him.
He then looks to his left where he shoved the girl to make sure she's okay too. From the looks of her stance and the way her earphone jacks are plugged into the ground, he would theorize that she was the one who brought down the one pointer.
Before he can thank her though, the ground begins to tremble as if there's about to be an earthquake. Cracks split into the cement, spreading into buildings and making them topple. Not too far off, there's an updraft of debris. It looks like something is rising out of the ground.. it's a titanic robot.. it's the zero pointer.
All around him, there's screams of terror. Every examinee started to run in the opposite direction as a result of mass panic. Some of them tripped as they scrambled towards the exit; others pushed or shoved people in their way.
Izuku then noticed someone amidst the clearing smoke. It looks like a girl is pinned underneath a broken pillar.. It's.. it's Uraraka! She looks injured, a patch of blood on her forehead.
Izuku looked back, watching everyone else run away. Cowards. Damned cowards. Everybody here claims they want to be a hero, but they won't even help someone in danger. They all abandoned a girl in trouble. It triggers something in Izuku, he's suddenly reminded of his kidnapping and how long he had spent in their captivity. No hero came to save him.. for five years. The same heroes that neglected him are these kinds of people.
Those same heroes allow robots this dangerous to wreak havoc on children without any experience. This is supposed to be an entrance exam for first years and they can get severely hurt. Izuku looks back at Uraraka, she's directly in its destructive path. The zero pointer isn't stopping.. he wonders if the heroes would really let it crush her. Maybe they don't see her there..
It doesn't matter what reason they have. In Izuku's eyes, they only have an empty excuse. The fact of the matter is they're not being heroic at all. It pisses him off. It makes him so angry. It makes him want to rip the damned thing apart. He'll smash it into oblivion! Destroy it until there's nothing left!
The purple haired girl would have ran too, had she not been frozen with her own fear. Her earphone jacks were still plugged in this whole time, giving her an amplified sense of sound. All the poor girl can hear right now is tremendous hatred. Izuku's heartbeat sounds like the beating of a drum, only describable as a fearsome melody of rage.
Izuku's hands tremble, his fingers twitching with the desire to tear into something. It's the only thing he sees in front of him currently, and he wants to rip it apart as if it alone is the source of all his anger. So, he yells out in a fit of rage, before biting down on his own hand. Izuku sinks his teeth into the flesh, feeling bone grate against his gums and blood ooze along his mouth.
As if it were an outlet for his wrath, a burst of green lightning takes shape around the area like its own explosion. The festering fury then takes a form of its own, meshing with Izuku's desire to destroy the zero pointer.
Izuku charged at the massive machine, roaring with all of his rage. He swung his fist into the center of it, leaving a massive dent that then bursts open in the wake of a shockwave. Wires and gears fly from the zero pointer's torso as it looms backwards from the impact.
Izuku doesn't question how he was able to pull it off. He doesn't wonder how he got to be the same size as the robot. All he wants right now is to invoke more damage on the damn thing. It wasn't enough. It will never be enough until he breaks every last bit of it!
Bringing his fists together, he slams them down onto where the zero pointer's head is. An explosion covers the area, complete devastation a result of the powerful impact.
Beady green eyes had become sunken within their sockets, glaring daggers at the heap of scrap metal. Despite lacking lips and flesh on his cheeks, the unusually jagged shape of his mouth takes on a fierce snarl. Bared teeth are exposed, grinding against eachother as they hold back another roar. He had transformed into a fifteen meter titan, his hair growing long enough to graze his shoulders. Izuku's ears had also undergone a change, taking shape of a point like an elve's. An elongated tongue waggles as he howls in anger again.
Raining his fists down in a frenzied barrage, the titan begins to demolish the rest of the zero pointer. Updrafts of debris spread throughout the streets. Distressed cries fill whatever remains of the city scape, a result of Izuku's frustrations over still seeing pieces of the machine.
Izuku swings his head around upon hearing the sound of rubble crunching. There's nothing behind him besides the wall that closes in the city and the gate he entered from. He looks downward then, finding the source of sound. A little old lady stares up at him, an expression of concern filling her features. He doesn't understand why she looks so worried. He defeated the zero pointer, afterall.
But.. she isn't alone. The purple haired girl with jacks that look like earrings, she's there too with a face that looks petrified. Behind her are two heroes that Izuku recognizes; Present Mic and Snipe are trying to pull her away as if there's still a threat.
Izuku tilts his head slightly upwards, looking at the front gate again. All the examinees that had been running were still going. There was no reason to run anymore now that the zero pointer is gone. Izuku doesn't understand why everybody is acting so weird.
Unless.. they're looking at him as if HE'S the threat. The robot beneath him was demolished with relative ease in a fit of anger; he had been like a child throwing a tantrum and terrified them. The examinees are running away from him like he's a villain.. it's how the heroes are looking at him right now..
Izuku looks down again, remembering the route cause of why he had become so furious in the first place. Still pinned under a pillar, Uraraka is looking up at him with an unreadable expression. He doesn't know what she must be feeling right now, but he can only imagine it's similar to everyone else's emotions.
Just thinking that the person he wanted to save is now scared of him is enough to end the rampage. It's like his entire body shuts down, the sensation of size and mighty power leaving his system just as quickly as it had arrived. That feeling of exhaustion from earlier returns full force, he suddenly feels very human again.
It's like coming up from underneath a hot tub's surface. The heat surrounding him is overwhelming alongside his steaming pores. He also sucks in a deep breath of air, as if it's the first time he's ever had the chance to taste oxygen.
His eyes blink open, slowly taking in the light. Then, Izuku stutters out a gasp upon realizing he's still fifteen meters high in the air. He's back to his normal size with his average appearance, but the form he had taken is still connected to him. Muscle fiber is sewn into his arms & legs, he resides in the nape of his titan form with no way out or no way down.
Until, something wraps around his waist and yanks him free. Izuku lets out a cry when the muscle fiber rips free from his skin. Luckily, his landing isn't as rough as the pull. With grace, Izuku is set down on a nearby rooftop.
It's like trying to stay conscious after running a marathon with no hydration. Izuku feels like he's about to pass out at any given moment. He's pretty sure the titanic form of a beast evaporating is a hallucination, but almost anything is possible anymore.
"Izuku Midoriya.", a voice lazily drawls his attention. Judging by the deep tone, Izuku suspects its an adult and by default must be his superior. When he looks up at the guy, his eyes widen in both recognition and awe. "It says on your application that you're quirkless..", the underground hero sounds angry.
Red eyes glare back into Izuku's green orbs, slightly stinging the retina due to a low glow. Eraserhead... is using his erasure quirk? Izuku can't properly form a coherent thought to question it anymore. Damn, he can't really function at all now that he tries to think about it. Hell, he can barely even move. He wants to ask the hero so much, but he can't. This isn't the kindof first impression Izuku wants to make, but he's really tired. Maybe it wouldn't hurt too much to close his eyes. If he nods off, then he can just ask the hero his questions later.
"Kid?", he sounds so concerned about just a little nap. "Kid?!", there's no need to panic. It's only some sleep.
Welp, so much for daily chapters. I desperately tried to finish this yesterday but it took me longer than I thought. I'm going to try to stay consistent and frequent, but I may end up making a new update scheduale for you all.
Anyways, I hope Izuku's first transformation was exciting for you all. It's going to be much more fun to write now that Izuku is aware of his quirk.. well, him and basically everyone else. We'll see how that all comes into effect later though.
Chapter 6: Turning Point
Izuku feels something damp on his forehead, stirring him from a deep slumber. He tries to reach up and touch the cold compress, but there's a tight band preventing movement around his wrist. Blinking his eyes, he's surprised to see restraints binding his hands and legs.
It's only then that he realizes he didn't wake up in his bedroom. Bare white walls and tiled flooring make up the place. Medical equipment hangs from drawers and cabinets. It takes a moment to fully come to terms with his predicament. He must be in a hospital. However, that doesn't explain the restraints. Unless.. Izuku starts to worry that he's been placed in a mental institution.
"Oh, good; you're awake. I was getting worried for a moment there; you were running a high fever, young man.", that old lady from the Entrance Exam is sitting on a stool beside him. It's all coming back now, the zero pointer and his rage filled transformation. It's like a realistic dream, too focused to not be real but almost unbelievable.
"W- What happened?", Izuku isn't fully certain that he can trust his own memories. Afterall, he's quirkless. It makes no sense that he'd turn into a titanic monster.
It's around that time the door to the room opens and a few others walk in. Izuku recognizes the underground hero, Eraserhead, and tries to restrain himself from geeking out. If his recollection is somewhat accurate, then this probably wouldn't be an appropriate time to ask for an autograph. Behind the disgruntled hero is the detective that Izuku spoke to after being rescued from his captivity. Detective Naomasa is his name if Izuku recalls correctly. Then there's some weird midget bear-mouse-mammal humanoid?
"I think that's a question better suited for them.", the old lady that must be the nurse here gestures to the newcomers.
"Greetings, Young Midoriya! My name Is Nezu, but you'll come to know me better as the principal of U.A.", the white furred dog thing can apparently speak. Wait, did it just say it's the principal? "I wish we could have met under better circumstances, but I'm afraid we have to take precautions until everything gets cleared up.", the rodent gestures towards the straps that are keeping Izuku held down.
"Do you care to explain yourself?", Eraserhead looks and sounds less enthused. The underground hero crosses his arms, expecting an answer.
"I'm.. I'm not en- entirely sure what I'm s- supposed to explain.. I was kinda hoping that you all would fill in those g- gaps..", Izuku shrunk in on himself as he hesitantly but respectfully spoke earnestly.
Detective Naomasa then stepped forward, a kind expression on his face that doesn't match his calculating eyes. "Midoriya, do you remember me? We spoke briefly about your case. You claimed to have no recollection on your captivity. Has this changed?", this wasn't the same gentle tone he was given in the interview that day. This is an interrogation.
"N- No!", Izuku hastily stammered out. "I mean.. I seriously have no idea what's going on..", he then blushes as he realizes that he just shouted over the detective.
Naomasa narrows his eyes, trying to analyze the boy in front of him. "Were you aware that you have a quirk before now?", distrust is evident in his voice.
"No, sir.. I swear, this is all very new to m- me.", Izuku looks him in the eyes that time in an attempt to show how genuine he is.
A moment passes before Naomasa sighs and turns towards Eraserhead & Principal Nezu, "My quirk doesn't detect any lies, but there's been a few exceptions where somebody can get past it."
Eraserhead nods in understanding, "Loopholes in your questioning can be exploited. Mind control and memory wiping is a potential candidate too."
Izuku's face scrunches up as he tries to comprehend their discussion. A detective used a lie detector quirk on him and now they're talking about his mind being altered. It all made sense, why he would be restrained and kept here for an interrogation..
"Are you working with villains to infiltrate the school?", Naomasa asked a new question that confirmed Izuku's suspicions.
"No! Of course not! I would never do that!", Izuku shouts.
Naomasa hums before giving a nod to Eraserhead and the principal.
"We apologize for taking such extreme measures. I hope you can understand our need for precaution though.", Nezu gestures to the nurse, indicating her to undo the restraining straps.
Izuku lets himself relax, his muscles untensing as the old lady lets him free. It feels good to roll his wrists and rub his ankles, the lack of leather clinging to them allowing his skin to breath.
"I guess I can't blame you..", Izuku sighs. It's probably what he would have done in their situation too. It would make sense to jump to that conclusion, granted that he was rescued without obtaining any injuries as well.
"That being said, we would still like to keep an eye on you here. Not to mention, you scored enough to pass the exam.", Nezu continues speaking as if he had never finished.
"Wait.. Does that mean..?", Izuku's head whips to face the principal to make sure he heard correctly.
"Yes. You've been admitted into U.A! Congratulations!", Nezu throws his paws in the air as a mini celebration.
Izuku has to pinch himself to make sure he isn't in some sort of coma induced hallucination. All of this so sudden and surreal, it makes him have to lay back down. "I.. can't believe it..", he whispers in awe of his own achievement.
"I hope you have a rational understanding why we've made this decision, Midoriya. In U.A, you'll be under close watch by plenty of pro heroes, including myself. Don't think you can get one over on us, if you aren't being sincere.", Eraserhead still hasn't shown any shift in his resolve towards playing bad cop in an apparently ongoing interrogation.
"I don't even know how I did what I did in the Entrance Exam!", Izuku protests in offense.
At this, the underground hero looks a little unnerved. "A quirk that you can't control?", he prompts Izuku to continue.
"It just sort of happened.. I saw Uraraka in trouble and something in me just.. snapped.", Izuku sighs in frustration as he tries to explain the event that led up to his transformation.
The room is covered in an uncomfortable silence until Eraserhead huffs in annoyance, "Come here tomorrow morning, six a.m sharp, we can begin your quirk training. Something as destructive and in your case, uncontrollable, should be supervised in a one on one environment."
Izuku perks up at that, "Really?!", he was already gawping at the chance to have solo lessons with one of his favorite heroes.
"Don't make me regret the decision, problem child.", Eraserhead gives his back to Izuku as he heads for the door.
"It seems everything is in order for the time being. In which case, I should also be going.", Nezu follows suite. The small mammal pauses in the doorway for one last farewell, "It was delightful to meet you, Midoriya. I hope we see eachother again very soon."
Nezu pulled out his cellphone once he stepped into the hall. After dialing a phone number, he waited for the dial tone.
"I AM -- Answering the phone like a normal person!", All Might resounded from the other end of the line.
"Toshinori, I'm afraid I have some news regarding the boy from the Entrance Exam.", Nezu disregards pleasantries for this particular discussion.
"Is he in league with the villains?", All Might is displeased to say the least.
"I'm afraid it could be far worse than that. According to Midoriya's medical records, he was quirkless until his kidnapping. Midoriya claims he wasn't aware and Naomasa can confirm he got past the truth test.. but the boy has apparently acquired a devastating quirk.", Nezu reports his findings.
"Then we're in agreement..", All Might's takes on a more dire tone.
"Yes. The only one capable of giving that poor child such a monstrous quirk is-"
"My biggest rival.", All Might finishes, "All For One.."
Chapter 7: Learning Curves
Izuku frantically runs out of the bathroom, nearly tripping over his own feet as he makes a mad dash for the bedroom. A toothbrush hangs out of his mouth like a cigar, paste dribbling down his chin from an unfinished brushing job. Water glistens off the physique of his body prior to a shower, he hadn't taken the time to dry off with the towel that's wrapped around his waist.
Sliding along the bedroom's carpet like a baseball player going for third base, he grabs the backpack that's stashed under his bed. As he uses the mattress as a support to stand back up, he takes a brief glance at the alarm clock on his nightstand. Upon seeing the time, the clumsy child picks up the pace.
Izuku rummages through his closet, tossing whatever clothes are in the way of proper attire. Eraserhead spoke of quirk training, so he picked out gym shorts and a t-shirt. When Izuku turned around, he paused briefly at the realization of a huge mess. Despite his room being littered with shirts and pants, he hurries out the door.
Inko is cracking eggs over a frying pan when her son comes crashing into the kitchen. She can't help but laugh at the sight of Izuku trying to shove his head through an arm sleeve. Taking a break from cooking breakfast, she helps readjust the shirt so he can properly wear it.
"Slow down, Izuku. There's no need to hurry. You've still got two hours.", she ruffles his hair in a coaxing manner. The whole display reminds her of an earlier time, back when her child was just a toddler crawling off to kindergarten.
Izuku groans as he brushes her hand away from his head, "Mommm! The train ride is an hour of its own; I can't be late!"
"Okay, okay!", Inko snorts at how overly dramatic her son is being, "You've got enough time to eat breakfast, at least." She turns on the oven and moves the pan over the burner.
"Fiinne! But that's all I've got time for!", Izuku whines as he glances at the clock on the stove. In order to maintain being productive, he begins stashing water bottles in his backpack.
Inko peers over her shoulder to watch him frantically shove protein bars into the bag. With a roll of her eyes at his antics, Inko goes back to cooking. "Did you pack a sleeping bag too?", she decides to tease him a little.
"Why? Do I need one?!", Izuku's head snaps to look at her with wide eyes. He looks although he just had an epiphany. Unable to giggle at how sincere he sounds, Inko shakes her head. "That's not funny..", Izuku then pouts.
"As exciting as this all is, it isn't your first OFFICIAL day at U.A. Just take it in stride, dear.", Inko tries to give him motherly words of wisdom. It's hard to take her seriously when she can't even find the salt shaker though.
"I guess you're right.. but I'm gonna be personally trained by Eraserhead, mom! I wanna make a good impression!", Izuku jumps like an antsy toddler.
Inko doesn't resist the smile that plants itself on her face; she's glad that her son is showing this side of happiness again, it'd been far too long. A memory comes back to haunt her though. The day that Izuku discovered he's quirkless, he asked her if he could still become a hero and she hadn't given him a proper answer in the worry that she would break his heart. Then, after he returned from the kidnapping, supposedly without that memory that haunts her.. she couldn't do it to him again. Inko told him he has what it takes to become a hero regardless of having a quirk. Now, he actually made it.. but she's so worried for his safety.
"Tell me again what happened for the teachers to take such a special interest in you.", she was willing to trust the opinion of professional heroes but now she has to decide on her own if this is a good idea or not anymore. Besides, talking about his experience at the Entrance Exam again will hopefully give Izuku an outlet for all that pent up excitement.
Izuku diverted his gaze, unable to look his mother in the eyes. He hopes that she'll mistaken it for him trying to remember the exam, but the truth is his guilt behind the matter. Detective Naomasa had spoken to Izuku about the importance of discretion when it comes to the sudden arrival of his quirk. There's some leniency for who he can share the information with, but something doesn't feel right about telling his mom. He knows that she'll be worried sick over the idea of villain's giving him a dangerous quirk. He hates lying to her, but he can't stand to stress her out either. Izuku tells himself that he'll let her know after he learns to control it to ease some of that pressure off.
"Uhh.. They were impressed by my ability to disable the robots without a quirk.", Izuku isn't all that convincing when it sounds like he's reading a teleprompter. "But there was also this secret point system outside of destroying the robots, so I got a bunch from saving two people!", that much was true and his relief could be mistaken for enthusiasm.
"I still don't understand why they're giving you a headstart over the other applicants.", Inko muses. "Oh! Don't get me wrong, I'm proud of you for getting this opportunity! It just..", she then tries to properly convey her thoughts upon realizing the wording might hurt Izuku's feelings.
Izuku is too busy trying to come up with own way of explaining things to notice his mother's internal dilemma. "Um, Eraserhead noticed that I use his fighting style and.. and, he.. he wanted to help me perfect it! Y- Yeah.. If I'm gonna become a hero, then I need to be able to properly defend myself and stuff..", Izuku felt like he was grasping at straws but that explanation seemed to convince his mother well enough.
"Oh, I see. Well, maybe I can meet this 'Eraserhead' some day. You can invite him over for some tea and I can hear from his own mouth that he sees something special in my boy too.", Inko smiles fondly at her son.
Izuku is too busy panicking over the thought of that meetup happening and the truth being revealed on accident to be embarrassed by his mom. Regardless, he nods along with a forced laugh. "Yeah, that would be.. good?", he cringes at his attempt to smooth things over. His mom looks too busy with making breakfast to notice though.
"Well, at least we won't have to wait for the results.", Inko turns off the skillet so she can serve the eggs.
Izuku grabs silverware from a drawer before sitting down to eat it. "Thanks, mom.", he smiles at her as she sets it down in front of him.
"Just make sure you eat it slowly, I don't- Izuku!", she doesn't have enough time to finish her sentence before Izuku is shoving the food down his throat. It'd be no use trying to stop him from scarfing it down, so she goes to grab him orange juice from the fridge instead. By the time she pours a drink to go along with the food, the crazed boy has already gobbled it all up.
As he chugs the orange juice, Inko heaves a heavy sigh. "I taught you better manners than that..", she lightly scolds him.
"Sorry, mom. I've gotta go now!", Izuku slurs his words as he finishes gulping the last bit of his drink. Then, the greenette is darting to the front door.
For a moment, Inko thinks he'll forget the scarf he always wears, but Izuku pauses to grab it from the coat hanger. As her son wraps it around his neck, she walks over to bid him farewell. "I love you, honey. Have a good day. Let me know when you're finished.", she gives him a hug he can't escape from him.
Izuku squirms in her grip as he cries out, "Okay! I love you too, mom! Let me go, I'm gonna miss the train!"
"Don't forget a coat! It's still chilly out there!", Inko quickly hands her son the nearest jacket.
"Oookaayy! Can I go now?", Izuku pleads as he slowly backs towards the exit.
Inko reluctantly nods, "Yeah. Don't miss your train. Run along."
When she finally lets him go, Izuku swings the front door open and.. Kacchan is there.
"K- Kacchan?", Izuku breathlessly speaks his surprise. In all of the excitement and confusion, he completely forgot about the other boy. "Wh- What are you doing here?", he wonders.
"HAAHH?! The hell is that supposed supposed to mean?! Our morning jog is soon and I came early to check up on you, jackass. The damned teachers wouldn't tell me why, but you were held late and I had to walk home by myself.", the blonde rants & raves.
Izuku feels a pang of guilt in his chest since he admittedly forgot about their annual morning jogs. He feels even worse since Kacchan was so concerned about him that he came early.
"You didn't tell Katsuki?", Inko chimes in from the doorway. "Ah, well you two can catch up if he walks with you to the train station. I would feel better anyways if you had company.", she doesn't even notice the pleading look that her son is giving.
"Mom-", Izuku tries to audibly protest next but Kacchan is already roughly grabbing his wrist to drag him away.
"Let's go, nerd.", Katsuki addresses the greenette first. "I'll take care of em! Don't worry, Auntie!", he then shouts over his shoulder to Inko.
"Ow! Ow! You're hurting me!", Izuku pries himself free from Katsuki's grip before rubbing his wrist.
"Are you gonna explain shit to me or not?", Kacchan doesn't seem to care though.
Izuku sighs while running a hand through his hair; it's still damp, having not dried from his shower yet. After a second of contemplation, Izuku figures he should tell Katsuki. There's no doubt in Izuku's mind that Kacchan managed to pass the exam and that means they'll likely be going to the same school. There's also the chance they might be in the same class. It'd only be a matter of time before Kacchan learns about Izuku's quirk.
"..I can turn into a giant monster..", Izuku mumbles while shying away. It's kinda hard to admit now that he's actually in a situation where he needs to describe it.
"Speak up, fuckwad!", Kacchan barks like a dog trying to get table scraps.
"I've got a quirk that turns me into a giant monster!", Izuku shouts back now that he's a little frustrated with his friend's attitude about the whole thing.
Katsuki squints like he's staring at a foreign object. "What.. What the fuck are you talking about? Are you trying to prank me?", he growls with an unspoken threat that he's in no mood for jokes.
"Kacchan, I'm serious! The zero pointer, that big robot that shows up towards the end of the test-- I.. I suddenly matched its size and tore it to shreds.", Izuku watches as his friend's face ranges through a series of emotions. However, Katsuki's eyes still hold disbelief in them. "I'm telling the truth!", Izuku shouts in annoyance.
"Prove it, then!", Kacchan yells back.
"I.. Well, I can't control it yet..", Izuku blushes in embarrassment.
Katsuki huffs before shaking his head, "That's real convenient.."
Izuku frowns, his own temper rivaling Kacchan's. "I'm heading to U.A right now so I can learn to control it though! Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, I already got accepted!", he then picks up the pace to put some distance between himself and the blonde.
Leaving behind a flustered Katsuki, the spikey blonde has to jog in order to catch up. "No shit? What the fuck?! But -- but you weren't born with a quirk, you-", he stops himself short as he realizes something, "Oh.. No fucking way.. Did the villains..?"
"Yeah.", Izuku answered the unspoken question. He needed to swallow his own spit to help the dry feeling that came from verbally admitting his quirk is a souvenir of his kidnappers.
"But that doesn't make sense! Why the fuck would the villains give you a quirk?!", Katsuki looked like he was having some sort of crisis. His eyes then went wide, only the pupil focusing on Izuku. "Unless.."
"You've probably come to the same conclusion the teachers did..", Izuku lowered his head. It really does seem like he's in cahoots with the villains when you think about it. "But Kacchan..", he then looked his friend directly in the eyes, "You know I would never do anything sinister like that. Right?"
Katsuki looked at a loss for words, an internal conflict evident from the expression on his face. Izuku feels tears welling up in his eyes, having to look away so Kacchan doesn't see and answer out of pity.
"Before your kidnapping.. you never shut up about being a hero. There was no way that you'd give in to the villains.", he looks torn between that past Izuku and the present one, "I want to believe you wouldn't change."
Izuku blinked his eyes a few times to bered of the tears before forcing a small smile. "Then I guess that's all I can hope for. Thanks, Kacchan.", it's the blonde's turn to turn away with a blush now.
"Whatever. So, they just let you into U.A cause you've got a quirk now?", Kacchan hopes to divert Izuku's attention and change the subject.
"They wanna keep an eye on me, just in case.. but it's also so I can learn how to control it, like I said.", Izuku is quick to explain the scenario.
That's apparently enough to pacify the blonde, "Good... cause' I wanna see that shit for myself and fight you fairly after you make the power your own!"
Izuku lets out a slight gasp of surprise. His smile becomes genuine after that as he nods in agreement.
The rest of the walk to the station is in silence. Once they make it there, Kacchan only lingers to make sure Izuku gets on his train. The greenette tries to wave through the window but the blonde chooses not to acknowledge it as he leaves.
Izuku pulls out his ipod so he can listen to music during the ride. After popping his headphones in, he slowly drifts to sleep. Not even the sun's beam baring down on him as it rises beyond the window is enough to draw him from the nap. However, he manages to wake up a stop before his own, so he takes that opportunity to stand up and stretch.
Even though he had already seen it, the structure of U.A still holds every ounce of glory it did the first time. Stepping foot back on the grounds of the school, Izuku holds a content smile, one that's from the satisfaction of earning his place there. Rescue points; who would have guessed?
Eraserhead is standing by the entrance to greet Izuku, looking half asleep.. or perhaps half alive. "You're three minutes late.", the hero held no real reproach in his statement; the sentence was meant to be more of an observation than anything.
Izuku bowed his head apologetically, "I'm sorry, Eraserhead-Sensei. I got held up at the station by a friend and- well, there's no excuse."
"Kid, you don't have to call me by my hero title. My name is Shota Aizawa.", the disheveled teacher scratches the scruff around his chin absentmindedly.
"Ah. Sorry, Aizawa-Sensei.", Izuku bows again after correcting himself.
Aizawa gives a curt nod before motioning for the newly appointed student to follow. The two take a stroll to a massive gymnasium that could also be classified as a training warehouse. Izuku takes it all in with the same awe he felt in every other portion of the campus.
"Alright, kid. Let's not waste any time here. If there's anything that you do know about your quirk, then let's start with that.", Aizawa snaps Izuku out of the dazed mindset.
"Um.. Well..", Izuku scratches his head as he tries to think of anything that might give a clue for his teacher to work with.
"Is there a trigger to activating your quirk or did it happen spontaneously?", Aizawa offers some support.
"I just remember being very angry.. I felt really helpless and just, all of those emotions made me start thinking irrationally. I then bit my hand in frustration and that's when it happened.", Izuku supplies his knowledge of the transformation with possible hints to what may have caused it.
Aizawa nods his head in understanding, "There are plenty of quirks that rely on a user's emotional state. Losing one's temper with a powerful quirk though.. I'm afraid to say that's what brings about most villains.", he then realizes his mistake in speaking out loud, "I apologize for my bluntness, Midoriya."
"It's.. It's o- okay..", Izuku lies. Hearing himself be compared to a villain by one of the hero's he idolizes makes him very woeful.
Aizawa must notice the teenager's slouch in demeanor, because he's then placing a comforting hand on the boy's shoulder. "I didn't mean to direct that statement towards you. It's unfair to make assumptions about a person just because of their quirk.", he then adds as an afterthought, "Besides.. if it's any consolation, I don't think your quirk is activated by pure impulse of emotions. You're feeling sorrow currently and you haven't transformed."
Izuku shakes his head, "But my emotions could still play a major factor. I wasn't in control of myself when I transformed. I was directing all of my anger on the zero pointer.. but what if the next time that happens, I don't have something to focus on?"
The hand on Izuku's shoulder squeezes slightly, "That's what you're doing here. You're learning how to ensure that never happens."
It takes a second for Izuku to fully accept that, but he nods in agreement. "You're right", he allows a small smile to plant itself on his face as he's reminded.
"Which I hope I'm wrong about this next hunch.", Aizawa then takes the hand off of Izuku's shoulder to rub his chin. "You said you bit your hand.. While it's concerning why you would harm yourself, that's a discussion for another time. What I'm more interested in currently is the potential that your quirk is activated by self inflicted pain.", Aizawa worries.
Izuku stares down at his hands, they're trembling from what he assumes is the fear that his teacher may be correct. "If that's true, do you think it's the only way to transform?", he hopes for an alternate solution.
"In a traditional sense, some quirks have more than one way of being used.. but if the villains that took you somehow found a way to implant one of their own, then I wouldn't put it past them to give you a trigger so sadistic.", Aizawa gives the boy a sympathetic look.
Izuku sighs in acception of the curse that is his quirk. "Okay.. I guess I have no other choice then.", he raises his hand towards his mouth.
But Eraserhead's capture cloth snagging his wrists stops him from sticking it in his mouth. Aizawa is glaring at him with the same red glow in his eyes that were present on the day of the Entrance Exam. "Wait a minute, Midoriya.", the command is stern enough to make Izuku swallow any arguments. The capture cloth then releases its hold and the glow in Aizawa's eyes fade away, "For starters, I don't want you harming yourself. Secondly, we'll need to take precautions in case the transformation actually works. I'm not saying you'll go on a rampage or cause damage to the property, but it's better to be safe than sorry."
"Oh, r- right..", Izuku blushes upon realization that he was being too reckless.
Aizawa steps on a floor panel that unlocks some sort of circular bunker. The cylinder is large around with a ladder and looks to be so deep that the bottom isn't viewable from the surface.
Izuku awkwardly fidgets in place until he catches sight of Aizawa who seems to be looking at him expectantly. The greenette glances towards the hole in the ground and then back at his teacher. "Y- You want me to go in there?", Izuku has to ask to make sure he isn't reading the situation poorly.
"Yes.", Aizawa gives a curt answer.
"You want me to go into that super deep and dark pit? All by myself?", Izuku stares at the tunnel with apprehensiveness before glancing back at Aizawa.
"Yes.", another forward & curt answer. Izuku sighs as he pulls at the scarf around his neck, feeling it slightly choke him. "Are you claustrophobic?", Aizawa seems to pick up on his student's wariness.
"N- No, sir. It's just.. Nevermind.", Izuku hangs his head in defeat before approaching the ladder.
"Take however long you need. If the first method doesn't work, try thinking of another. I'll wait four hours. That should give you a long enough time to figure out the trigger of your transformation.", Aizawa speaks as he watches Izuku descend into the hole.
Once the problem child is out of sight, Aizawa zips himself into a portable sleeping bag. Having not gotten very much sleep due to a late night patrol, he slumps over to get some rest on the floor. About an hour passes before Aizawa treats himself to a juice pouch. There's been no sign from the problem child and he contemplates checking on the boy, but ultimately chooses to give his student a proper chance to prove himself.
Aizawa isn't entirely certain when he may have closed his eyes, but it must've made him fall asleep. The only way he's woken up is from the sound and light of the warehouse's door being swiveled open. Present Mic and Midnight enter the gym, no doubt checking on him and his student.
"Where's the little listener?", Mic looks around like he's trying to play a live action game of 'Where's Waldo?'.
Aizawa points to the hole in the ground, "Down there trying to find the right switch for his quirk."
"Shota! That's not proper teaching! You basically stuck the kid in a dungeon!", Mic exclaims.
"You also fell asleep during the lesson.", Midnight supplies.
"You also fell asleep during the lesson!", Mic mimics Midnight. The hero's cockatoo hair style is so fitting, it almost makes Aizawa stifle a snort.
"What time is it?", Eraserhead asks as he applies eyedrops to fix his dry eye. The use of them earlier and then falling asleep right afterwards was enough to irritate his vision.
"Nearly eleven o' clock! I bet the poor kid is starving down there.", Present Mic gestures to the pit for emphasis.
"Alright, alright. I'll go get him.", Aizawa sighs as he forces himself to stand. "Midoriya! That's enough for today! You hear me?", he then peers over the hole to see if the kid is climbing up.
Instead, Aizawa sees Izuku covered in both dry and fresh blood. Puncture marks cover the boy's arms, the sleeves rolled up to no doubt account for more space after the hands had none left. All around Izuku's mouth are blisters from biting down on his own flesh, the red tone a mix from the soreness and dried blood.
Izuku looks up when he hears his teacher's startled gasp. "I'm.. I'm s- sorry..", is all he can force out as his body shakes from sobbing. "I couldn't get it to work.. no matter what I tried.."
Aizawa has never dealt with a child this problematic before, it's absurd. The hero has half a mind to disregard Nezu's request and expel the kid before he can injure himself any further. However, the kinder side of Aizawa makes him feel sympathetic for the poor boy. There must be a reason for this reckless behavior and he doesn't want to push Izuku away before resolving it.
"You're finished until the semester starts. I don't want you doing that to yourself ever again. Do I make myself clear?", Aizawa tries not to raise his voice while also maintaining an aggressive & assertive tone.
Izuku flinches at the scolding, having not known his father to ever receive one until now. Sure, his mother could sometimes be scary, but she was often more disappointed than angry. "I'm sorry, Sensei. I won't do it again..", Izuku apologizes with his head down in shame.
Aizawa watches the body language of the boy, feeling a morsel of guilt for being so harsh. With a sigh of remorse, he beckons Izuku to the ladder. "Come on up here and get yourself cleaned off then.", Aizawa tries to make his voice as soothing as possible this time.
By the time Izuku climbs up the ladder, Midnight and Present Mic are already gone. Aizawa escorts the problem child to the boy's locker room where a shower is installed and orders him to wash up. Once Izuku cleans off the dried blood and dresses his wounds with a new change of clothes, Aizawa motions for him to follow.
"Are you hungry?", Aizawa asks.
Izuku puts a hand over his stomach, feeling a slight rumble. "Y- Yeah.. Kinda.", he admits with an embarrassed blush.
"I'll take you to the cafeteria then. I'm sure Lunch Rush won't mind making you something to eat.", Aizawa starts leading Izuku in a direction that opposes the exit.
"A- Ah, thank you, Sensei. However, that isn't necessary. I can just-", Izuku starts to politely protest but a hard glare from his teacher is enough to shut him up.
Once they enter the cafeteria, Izuku perks up at the sight of more pro heroes. As mentioned, Lunch Rush is cooking behind a counter. There's also Present Mic and Snipe from the Entrance Exam, who are sitting with the R rated hero, Midnight.
"Well, look who it is!", Present Mic greets the newcomers from his seat.
"Midoriya, do you care to join us? I promise that I won't bite.", Midnight winks as she teases the flustered boy.
While Izuku is reduced to a red blubbering mess, Aizawa isn't phased by the taunting one bit. Instead, the teacher ushers Izuku to sit with the other heroes while giving Midnight a glare that speaks volumes without requiring him to raise his voice.
"So, how did your first day of training go? I know Shota can be a little rough around the edges, but he makes sure that only the best graduate from his class.", Mic has no problem moving the conversation forward.
However, Izuku is slightly surprised, "Wait.. I'm going to be in Aizawa-Sensei's class?"
Mic flashes Aizawa a glance who's too busy sighing to respond with any kind of glare. "Whoops. It seems I let the cat out of the bag. I just sorta assumed..", the loudmouth is suddenly reduced to a shy whisper.
"Somebody's gotta keep an eye on you, problem child. It should be obvious that I'd take it upon myself to be the one who does it.", Aizawa addresses his student who was patiently waiting on the hero's input.
"So, Midoriya-Kun, any idea what you'd like to eat?", Midnight chimes in as she leans over the table. Izuku has to look away, too embarrassed to stare at her directly. Whether the heroine tries to be seductive or it comes naturally, he isn't sure he wants to know.
"U- Uhhh.. W- Whatever Lunch R- Rush has prepared.. I'm not that picky..", Izuku fiddles with the scarf that's choking his neck again.
"Nemuri, stop harassing the poor kid.", Aizawa shoos the dominatrix away.
"Come on, Shota! I'm just playing with the little guy! Besides, he's kinda cute!", Midnight wiggles her body like she's adoring a puppy. Izuku decides to stare at his lap for the rest of the time being, since her swaying movements vastly effect her feminine attributes.
Desperately hoping to change the topic, Izuku unzips his backpack to pull out an old notebook. He doesn't remember taking all the notes on heroes that are in it, but he figured it'd be fitting for what he wants to ask. "Um.. Er- Eraserhead -- I mean, Aizawa-Sensei..", he shyly mumbles in an attempt to get the hero's attention.
"What is it, kid?", Aizawa skeptically raises an eyebrow once he notices the notebook.
Izuku holds it out to the hero, hoping he'll accept it. "C- Could I please have an a- autograph?", he closes his eyes as he asks, unable to meet the hero's gaze.
"Awww, that's sooo cuuute!", Midnight coos from her seat. Luckily, Izuku has his eyes closed so he doesn't have to feel embarrassed about seeing her shake in place.
Present Mic gives his friend a grin and thumbs up, but Eraserhead doesn't show any falter in his 'resting bitch face' expression. "I'm sorry, Midoriya, but I don't give autographs.", he lightly pushes the notebook away.
"O- Oh.. Alright..", Izuku tries to hide that he's feeling dejected about the rejection.
"Shota, that's not cool, dude! Give the kid an autograph!", Mic slides his sunglasses down to give the hero one of his own glares.
Aizawa shakes his head, still refusing to do so. "It isn't rational for an underground hero to allow exposure of themself. Besides, Midoriya is training to become his own hero and that will make us his colleagues some day.", he tries to explain his perspective of respect.
Before Present Mic and Eraserhead can continue arguing though, Lunch Rush arrives with a tray of food. "Dig in, everyone!", he sets down a bowl of curry for each person at the table.
"Thank you, sir!", Izuku bows his head before taking a bowl. As he grabs one though, he accidentally knocks a spoon off the counter. It clatters onto the floor, not too far away from grabbing distance. As he reaches to pick it back up, there's a slight pain in his arm that makes him retract from taking it.
"Are you alright, Midoriya?", Midnight asks when she sees him cradling his arm.
"Y- Yeah. I'm fine.", Izuku shakes it off before going to grab the spoon again.
It's then that an eruption of green lightning overtakes everyone.
Izuku lets out a startled scream as heat surrounds his body, the mist radiating from whatever blast he just caused concealing his vision of the cafeteria. When the smoke clears, his eyes widen in shock upon realizing his arm is coated in muscle fiber big enough to make up three tables. Ash and soot from the explosion cover the area, along with broken shrapnel from whatever got caught up in the blast.
In an initial panic, Izuku starts pulling on the flesh, trying to tear his arm free from the muscle growth. When it doesn't slip out easily, he starts to scream in worry that it might be stuck. "Why now?!", he cries out in distress as he continues yanking on the tight grip.
Suddenly, a voice cuts through that thick cloud of panic. "Calm down.", it's assertive but also understanding. The tone is taking things seriously but refrains from showing any judgement.
"Aizawa-Sensei.. I didn't mean to-", Izuku tries to steady his breathing as he explains the accident to his teacher. However, he's surprised at what he sees when turning his head.
"I said to calm down.", Aizawa wasn't speaking to Izuku at all. Eraserhead is standing in between his student and the other heroes. The man has a hand on the capture scarf around his neck, prepared to use it in order to defend Izuku. On the other side, Midnight is pinching the fabric of her costume in case she needs to use her own quirk and even Present Mic looks ready to fight. Snipe had been silent the entire time, and now he has his guns trained, revealing his contempt for the boy. "All of you.", Eraserhead stares each of his fellow heroes down.
"Shota, you're too close! Get away from him!", Present Mic cries out in desperation.
"No. You're the ones who should GET BACK.", Aizawa responds through gritted teeth.
"Why?!", Midnight shouts back.
"My intuition.", Aizawa levels his eyes to stare into hers.
None of the heroes want to fight one another, so they all start to lower their guard.
Aizawa turns his sight back to the arm, noticing the spoon that it's gripping. "I don't think Midoriya meant to transform. If he did, then there would be a much bigger thing than just his arm currently.", Aizawa then points to the silverware for everyone else to see, "It's my assumption that his quirk's trigger has to do with a goal. Even something as small as taking a spoon can activate his.. 'titan' form. It all lines up with what he told me about focusing his anger on destroying the zero pointer."
Izuku continues staring at the heroes, his vision blurring as tears begin to form. Even with Aizawa's explanation, they look at the boy with unease. The distrust stems from thinking he might become a villain, that he might be a spy for them. He understands why, but that doesn't lessen the shame he feels when seeing someone stare at him that way.
Having had enough of it, he tugs one last time with enough strength to rip his hand free from the massive arm he created. Once he falls to the floor, detached to the big limb, it begins to evaporate into the same steam that emitted upon its making.
"How do you feel?", Aizawa asks. Not even he knows whether he's referring to the physical effects of transforming or any emotional turmoil, likely it's both.
"Not.. Not so good..", Izuku stumbles as he tries to stand up. Between a mixture of exhaustion and sorrow, he gives in to a breakdown. Throwing himself into Aizawa's chest, he releases the pent up feelings by crying.
Taken aback at first, Aizawa just stands there in uncertainty of what to do. Slowly, he returns the hug and lets Izuku bawl his eyes out. In that moment, it's clear to see Izuku is a boy trying to cope with a monstrous quirk. There's no way this kid can be a villain, no matter how problematic he is.
"Midoriya.. Would you still like me to give you an autograph?"
In retrospect, Izuku is thinking he should have gone to school on his own. Strolling the halls with Kacchan only brings baggage that complains the whole way. The two had gotten lost in the winding corridors while looking for their classroom and the ensuing rant from Katsuki is still ongoing.
"How the fuck could you get lost, shithead?! You were here just a few days ago!", the ash blonde pulls at his hair in frustration. If Kacchan were just a tad angrier, Izuku would have expected him to yank it out in mangled knots.
"I've never been to our classroom, though!", Izuku protests in defense. "Besides.. this place is huge..", he adds as an afterthought while gazing out a passing window. The courtyard stretches out like a football field, surrounded by other massive buildings.
"Tch. Good thing I insisted on coming early..", Kacchan continues to grumble to himself as they march forward. When the blonde stuffs his hands into his pockets, Izuku takes it as a sign that their argument is finally over.
With a sigh of relief, Izuku turns his head to read off the passing door labels. The two teens must have entered from the opposing end, or the system is backwards. Starting at 'Z', they read off the alphabet in a backwards order. Izuku groans when he hears Kacchan start bitching behind him.
The facility is impressively huge for a place with just a few students. According to statistics, only one in three hundred applicants has a chance of getting in each year. Only thirty six students are allowed to a grade; divided into two classes of eighteen. However, that's only the Hero Course. There's also General Education, Management & Business, Engineering, Support, along with a few others. Ultimately, it's a handful selection, which isn't a lot when compared to other schools. Yet, Izuku and Katsuki managed to plant themselves into the prestigious academy.
Eventually, the two teens reached Class 1-A's homeroom. The door itself is huge, but likely done to ensure it's accessible to everyone. Izuku cracks it open, hoping to catch a peek inside before fully committing. However, Kacchan is already too impatient and forces his way through, leaving the greenette to stand alone in the doorway.
Sweeping the room with his eyes, Izuku notices that a majority of the desks have already been claimed. Most of his classmates are mingling with each other or patiently waiting for the teacher to arrive. A group of girls are in the back, the purple haired one with earjacks amongst them. Izuku locks eyes with her for a brief moment when she glances over, but she looks away just as quickly, leaving Izuku with an evident blush.
Suddenly, somebody grabs him from behind. Izuku jolts at the sudden touch, but lets himself relax a little when seeing that its just Uraraka. "Wow, we got into the same class! What luck!", she exclaims with her usual enthusiasm. "Oh! I never got to thank you for saving me!", she clasps her hands together in appreciation.
Izuku tries to wave it off, not really wanting to draw attention to himself in case anybody else in the room witnessed his transformation. "Ah, it was nothing, really!", he nervously glances around to make sure nobody overheard them.
While none of the students in the classroom seemed to notice, a redheaded boy enters from the hallway who must have listened in. "That was YOU who destroyed the zero pointer?", Izuku worries about the expression that's no doubt filled with shock. "SO MANLY!", but is taken off guard by the praise he gets right after.
Uraraka vigorously nods her head, "The way you bashed it to pieces was so cool!"
Izuku stands there with his mouth agape, eyes watering with the threat to spill over. "Y- You aren't scared of me?", he thinks back to how even the teachers were apprehensive about his quirk.
The redhead rubs the nape of his neck, clearly nervous about what he's going to say next. "Well, what you did after bringing it down was a bit overkill..", but it's not the worst criticism. Izuku smiles now that he understands the boy was more worried about hurting Izuku's feelings than admitting any fear he might have.
"Thank you, Uraraka. Thank you, er, I never got your name..", Izuku eyes widen in realization that he was being rude in not introducing himself or asking the newcomer.
But the redhead waves it off like no big deal, "The name's Eijirou Kirishima. Nice to meet ya!"
"Izuku Midoriya.", the greenette bows in greeting.
"If you're here to socialize, then get out.", the three students freeze in the doorway at the sudden voice that comes from below them. Looking down, they spot a yellow human sized caterpillar. Oh, wait.. Izuku fights the urge to facepalm when it rolls over and he recognizes the face peering out as Aizawa's. "This is the hero course, not daycare.", the sleeping bag then sheds off of him like a cocoon and the tall teacher looms over his students, "Take a seat if you understand."
"Y- Yes, sir!", Kirishima scrambles to a desk behind Kacchan while Uraraka plants herself in a seat next to Izuku.
"It took eight seconds after my arrival for you all to quiet down. Time is a precious resource. You lot aren't very rational, are you?", Aizawa stares his class down with a calculating eye.
Izuku jostles in his chair when somebody shouts from directly behind him, "Excuse me!", Izuku slightly turns his head to see the bespeckled boy from the exam. "Who are you, exactly?", the blue haired boy adjusts his glasses as he stares back at Aizawa.
"I'm your homeroom teacher, Shota Aizawa. Pleased to meet you.", the hero lazily drawls like he's reading off a cue card. He's then thrusting a thumb over his shoulder, everyone follows it to see its aimed at the door. "Quickly now. Change into your gym clothes and head out to the grounds."
The class begins murmuring to each other as they head to the locker rooms. Izuku drags a hand down his face, not fully prepared for whatever antics his teacher has up his sleeve. In the changing room, Izuku finds a locker that his name printed on it. In the storage unit, he finds a blue tracksuit covered in white lines that form an insignia spelling 'U.A'.
Once the class regroups outside, Aizawa finally explains what they'll be doing. "The system here is like no other. Today, I will be conducting a test of your quirks.", this creates a wave of whispers to friends throughout the class.
"What about the entrance ceremony or guidance sessions?", a girl with green hair brings a curious finger to her chin, "Shouldn't we start with those? Ribbit."
"There's no time to waste on that stuff if you all want to become heroes.", Aizawa pauses to see if there'll be any other interruptions or questions. "Softball throwing, standing long jumps, a fifty meter dash, grip strength, seated toe touches.. You did these in middle school, yes?"
The class nods along to their teacher, affirming his own question for them.
"Those were your standard 'no quirks allowed' gym tests. Japan still insists on prohibiting quirks when calculating the averages of those records. The department of education isn't concerned with providing hero schools those results. So, as such, we need to conduct those tests on our own.", Aizawa finishes explaining.
Aizawa then points to Kacchan, "Bakugo.", he beckons his student over. "How far could you throw in middle school?", he asks.
"Sixty seven meters..", Kacchan grumbles since he isn't very proud of the score.
Aizawa then tosses the blonde a softball, "Try it with your quirk. Do whatever you need to. Just don't leave that circle.", the teacher gestures to a spot in the grass made from chalk.
"Heh.. Awesome.", Kacchan then adds a boom to his pitch. As the ball leaves his hand, an explosion sparks from the palm to blast it off like a rocket. "DIE!", Kacchan shouts at the ball like it personally offended him.
The backlash from the blast blows everyone's hair in a gust of wind. Most students are too astonished by their classmate's quirk to be concerned with his death threat to the ball.
"It's important for us to know our limits..", Aizawa waits for a device in his hand to calculate the throwing distance, "That's the first step to figuring out what kind of heroes you'll be.", he then shows the results to the class.
An impressive digital number of 705.2m displays on the screen.
"Seven hundred and five meters?! Seriously?!", a blonde with a lightning streak in his hair exclaims in awe.
"So we can use our quirks for real?! Man, the hero course is great!", a girl with pink skin and small horns hops with joy.
"This is pretty awesome.", Kirishima grins so wide that his shark toothed smile glistens in the sun.
Aizawa doesn't look pleased with the responses though. "..'Awesome', you say? You're hoping to become heroes after only three years and you think it'll all be fun and games?", the looming presence of their teacher makes everyone quiet down.
"To teach you all a lesson.. the one with the lowest score across all events will be judged as hopeless and rightfully so will be expelled.", Aizawa proclaims now that he's the only one with a grin full of teeth, "Welcome to the hero course, kids!"
Glancing around, Izuku sees most of his class looks more determined than worried. Kacchan has a feral grin of his own, which should be concerning, but Izuku decides to overlook it. Right now, Izuku needs to figure out what he'll do to pass the tests and stay in the class. Without full mastery over his quirk yet, he might fail.
Suddenly, a short student with purple balls on his head comes crashing through the legs of his classmates. "But it's only the first day! I mean, even if it weren't, that's totally unfair!", he wails while clutching onto Aizawa's pant leg.
The teacher shakes the stubby boy off, "Natural disasters.. highway pileups.. calamity is always right around the corner. I'd say Japan is full of unfair things."
When that explanation doesn't look like it phased the pipsqueak in the slightest, Aizawa sighs and decides to continue. "Heroes are the ones who are meant to correct all that unfairness. If you were hoping to spend your evenings hanging out at some fast food drive thru, I'm sorry to tell you that U.A will run you through the wringer in the short span of these next three years.", that makes the purple haired kid let out an 'eep' and scramble back to his fellow classmates.
"Oi, Dekiru.", Izuku turns to see Kacchan walking up beside him, "Let's give it our all."
Izuku is baffled by the proclamation, but nods in agreement. Even if he has to do this whole thing quirkless, he'll be sure to place high enough.
It's kinda hard to win a race when your opponent has engines in his calves though. "Like a fish in water. Hmph. We'll see how he does in the other events.", Aizawa watches the bespeckled boy beat Izuku in that contest.
Even though his physical training showed great results, it didn't surpass someone that gains super strength from consuming sugar.
Push Ups and chin ups are simple enough since he does them at the gym all the time, but his count before getting too tired to keep it up was below a margin of many others.
Izuku felt himself getting disheartened and worried as he watched all of his classmates surpass him. Without a quirk, he was going to fail and get expelled. Aizawa seemed to notice and take pity, because the teacher was calling him over before the next event.
"Why aren't you using your quirk?", Aizawa gets straight to the point.
"I.. I can't control it, remember?", Izuku hangs his head in shame.
Aizawa sighs, having heard the same statement from other students he taught. "I'm here to make sure nobody gets hurt. If you really are that concerned about it though, then try reigning it in.", that draws Izuku's attention back.
"W- What do you mean?", Izuku gazes up at his teacher with a hopeful look in his eyes.
"Remember what you did in the cafeteria? You didn't completely transform; it was just enough to grab the spoon. Try using only a small margin of your power.", Aizawa suggests.
Izuku gasps, having not thought of using his quirk in a way of suppressing its power. He then nods with a new goal in sight, taking a softball as he prepares to throw it. Focusing on his arm again, he tries to morph it just enough to give the ball some extra force.
"Ten feet.", Aizawa shows the results.
Izuku's mouth hangs open, staring at his arm. Nothing happened. If his quirk is activated by having a goal in mind, then why did it completely ignore his intent to pitch the ball?
"Sensei.. Can I have a redo?", Izuku whips his head to stare into his teacher's eyes.
Aizawa is about to say no, but he also wants to see the boy excel. "Fine.", he tosses him a new ball.
"Ah, what the hell?! Is the teacher playing favorites?!", the electric blonde complains.
Izuku ignores his classmate, instead looking between the ball in one hand and his empty hand. Breathing in and out to psych himself out, he bites down on his thumb. Again.. nothing happens. Dropping to one knee, Izuku tries to suppress tears behind a pained whimper.
"Midoriya. That's enough.", Aizawa steps forward to intervene, but Izuku furiously shakes his head.
"No! I can do this!", Izuku bites down on his hand again before Aizawa can stop him. Crying out in agony, he clutches the bleeding limb. "God.. That hurt more than the first time..", his body shakes in pain.
Class 1-A watches with many varying expressions. Some are concerned while others look slightly fearful. Kirishima steps forward to do something, "Bro..", but Kacchan grabs the redhead's shoulder to stop him.
Aizawa sighs and approaches his student, crouching down to reach a similar height. "Midoriya. You're done. Go to Recovery Girl to get your hand bandaged up.", he orders.
Izuku's eyes widen in fear, "But Sensei! I- No, you can't expel me! Give me a chance!"
"I'm not expelling you. You're just disqualified for sustaining an injury.", Aizawa tries to soothe the boy.
"I.. But..", Izuku trembles under his hero's looming presence. He wants to hug the man again, just cry and let his troubles melt away. But with the other students watching, all he can do is go to the nurse's office. "Okay.."
On his way to Recovery Girl, Izuku passes a sickly skinny man that also flashes him a concerned look. Izuku chooses to ignore the guy, having had enough pity & embarrassment for one day.
I know this is another short chapter and I apologize that I made you wait two days for something so small, but life got in the way and all I can really do is promise to try and make the next few longer to make up for it.
Izuku gradually ebbed his way into the cafeteria. After his little episode, on the first day no less, he was more than embarrassed to face his class again. It looked like even Kacchan had been disturbed by the desperate display, and they had known eachother since childhood.
Izuku's hand is now wrapped in gauze, something he doesn't want the others to see, so he shoves it inside his pant's pocket. The bite marks had felt incredibly deep, but Recovery Girl's diagnosis said the puncture wounds are actually shallow enough that she wouldn't need to use her healing quirk on him.
Lunch Rush waved in greeting, welcoming the familiar face. Izuku gave the man a polite smile in return before taking a tray of food. It was your classic school milk carton and an apple alongside the choice of rice or stew.
Already half the day had gone by and Izuku managed to miss the best part. After homeroom and lunch, regular classes were required by the school board. It's kinda like American college in a sense where you get the part you signed up for in terms of a future career, but additional lessons are necessary to participate. Present Mic seemed like a fun and eccentric enough person to ensure his teaching ought to be enjoyable, but he hadn't met Cementoss yet to know if he'll be strict like Aizawa.
Izuku put the brakes on his train of thought for a second. Right now, he was having a hard time finding a table to sit at. Nearly every class had split into groups, making it look like your generic prison mess hall. Izuku spotted some of his classmates, but they hadn't paid him any attention yet and he doubted it'd be a good idea after his embarrassing display. Not knowing anybody outside of his own class, he couldn't approach them without coming off as awkward either.
But, lo and behold, there was a single person sitting at a single table in the back. Izuku recognizes him as a classmate too due to the unique peppermint hair style. As the greenette tried to approach him though, the boy glared through a scar covering his eye. Izuku wasn't certain if it was intentionally meant to be intimidating, but he didn't want to try sitting there anymore.
Getting desperate, Izuku decided to sit at the nearest table after that and deal with the consequences later. Across from him was none other than the purple haired girl with earjacks; she had witnessed both of his insane displays. Izuku had to fight the urge to retreat, choosing to act like none of that happened instead.
"H- Hi. I'm Izuku Midoriya.", he felt his face heat when the girl looked up from her phone. It's only then that he realizes she had her jacks plugged in, meaning she must have been listening to music or something. "Oh! I'm sorry if I interrupted you! I just.. Uh..", he tries to stammer out a decent apology but the girl is already giving him her undivided attention.
"I was just gonna call you a suicidal blockhead, but I guess your name will have to do.", she graces Izuku with a small smirk after gauging his embarrassed reaction, "I'm just kidding."
"O- Oh..", Izuku doesn't know if he should breath a sigh of relief or not. Honestly, he's still feeling a lot of pressure just sitting next to this girl, let alone talking to her.
"My name's Kyoka Jirou.", she eases some of that pressure off by introducing herself.
"N- Nice to meet you.", Izuku tries becoming less tense.
"So, what's with the dopey scarf?", and her teasing makes it all the more difficult.
"Uh- Well, I kinda use it for more than just fashion..", he chuckles nervously as he tries to defend himself with an explanation.
Jirou raises a brow, "Oh yeah?", she then shrugs with a amused expression, "I won't judge."
The joke seems to go over Izuku's head, but his face still turns as ripe as a tomato. "S- So.. What music were you listening to?", he points to her phone with a shaky finger in hopes to change the subject.
"O- Oi! You can't blatantly ask me that!", it's now Jirou's turn to blush profusely. Izuku gives her a perturbed look when she avoids his gaze. "I just.. It's just some rock music..", she shyly twirls one of her earjacks.
"Oh, cool! I like a bit of rock too.", Izuku perks up when realizing they have a common interest to discuss.
"Really? I would've taken you for a guy that's more into something like opera.", Jirou glances at Izuku from the corner of her eye.
"Wh- What's that supposed to m- mean?", Izuku gets flustered as he worries about the judgement in music taste. Most people consider that genre as lame after all.
That's all it takes for Jirou to recover from her own stupor and return full force to teasing. "It's probably because of the scarf.", she has to suppress a giggle when Izuku puffs up his face in a pout.
It was strange to associate with the boy after everything she had experienced. Jirou had heard his heartbeat, hearing nothing but absolute rage for everyone around him. The girl had witnessed the boy turn that anger into a physical form, a rampaging monster that took all of its fury out on a machine, leaving barely any scrap behind. However, not a single of that fragmentation is present, this kid is as innocent as they can come.
Then again, the lack of transformation when he tried during the quirk assessment tests was fairly recent. The way Izuku had willingly put himself through pain, even after the teacher and his classmates tried to intervene.. the boy is horrifying in his own right.
Then there's the strange collection of friends Izuku made. A blonde that looks prepared to go nuclear, that bubbly brunette, and she saw him speaking to the spiky redhead. Those three are making their way to the table right now, seemingly spotting what would have been an outcast in middle school.
"Dekiru! You're back!", Uraraka exclaimed. The girl looked like she wanted to hug him, but the positioning of one sitting and the other standing prevented her.
"We were really worried about you, man.", Kirishima supplies why they all bothered seeking him out.
"Tch. I knew that you'd be fine. It's just these losers tha-", Kacchan just got.. smacked? The blonde looks like a rabid dog, growling at Uraraka. "What the fuck was that for?!"
"I just knocked some sense into you.", Uraraka shrugs. Kirishima and Jirou stifle a laugh, hiding their mouths behind their hands to block smiles. Izuku would have had the same reaction, if he weren't still so shellshocked about Kacchan getting smacked by a girl.
"What was all that about, anyway?", Jirou interjects into the group's conversation.
"O- Oh! It has to do with.. uh, my quirk.", Izuku timidly turns away when he remembers he can't give them any details, "I can't really tell you much about it, cause' I don't know much either."
Before anybody can push the issue, Uraraka jumps at the chance to introduce herself to Jirou. "Guys, where's your manners?! Dekiru made a new friend and none of us said hello!", she exclaims.
"Oh, sorry! I'm Ejirio Kirishima. This here is Bakubro, and you've already met the more energetic members..", the boy gestures to everyone while flashing one of his signature shark toothed grins.
"Bakubro?", Izuku tries not to laugh as he glances at Kacchan for a reaction. The blonde is fuming, but he isn't raging just yet.
"I'm Ochaco Uraraka! Nice to meet ya!", the bubbly brunette forcefully shakes Jirou's hand.
"K- Kyoka Jirou..", she's just as shy as Izuku when it comes to meeting new people it seems.
Izuku watches them all interact with a smile. He was worried that his episode during the quirk assessment would scare everyone off and ruin his chances of making friends, but everybody seems to get along without a care. Even Kacchan is sparing him a look that isn't classified as a glare, it's more like a grimace, which is a step up considering who the blonde is.
Carrying on for the rest of lunch, the group discussed their taste in music and television shows. Kacchan and Kirishima seemed to hit off really well and the girls did that weird girl thing where they go to the bathroom together; girls are weird.
Izuku quietly and contently chewed on his food. Then, his gaze caught the eye of that candy cane haired boy. His classmate hadn't budged a bit, that scarred eye keeping Izuku in sight the entire time. The greenette suppressed a shudder, turning away to continue eating his food.
After lunch, it was time to carry on like a regular school day. Izuku made a mental note to buy some earplugs after Present Mic's class finished and didn't really mind Cementoss as a teacher in comparison to the rambunctious cockatoo.
At the end of the day, everybody returned to homeroom for a final assessment.
"Alright, class. Normally, we'd ask you to send an application before the year begins, but things got a little moved around as of late.", Aizawa hands a stack of papers to a boy with a tail, "Mashirao, please pass these around."
Izuku whispers a 'thank you' when Mashirao hands him one.
"You'll be given tonight and tomorrow to send these in. Consider it a homework assignment if you must.", that gains a groan from some of the students. Aizawa ignores them, "Essentially, you need to draw a visual and write a description of what you'd like your hero costume to consist of.", that collection of groans turns into cheers.
Izuku stares at the paper in front of him, scanning the page to read all of the columns and questions. "My hero costume.."
Okay, so it's another super short chapter. Originally, I was going to combine this one with the next, but I also wanted to get a chapter out today to make up for the lack of them beforehand.
So, I've got a general concept of what Izuku's hero suit could be, but I also wanted to hear some of your suggestions to see if it could be incorporated into the design. If you have something in mind, feel free to share!
Dried flakes of skin litter the countertop like speckles of rain. Fingernails dig into the underbelly of Tomura Shigaraki's neckline, scratching at his nerves like somebody picking at a scab. Scarred lips furl into a snarl; his piercing red eyes glower at a television screen that's displaying live footage of All Might saving a runaway bus.
"He's here. He's in Musutafu..", Shigaraki seethes through his grated teeth. The loathing behind his words rivals that of somebody running into their ex.
Kurogiri is glowering too, but more so due to the mess left on the bar counter. Sweeping off the dead skin with a duster, he turns his gaze up to meet Shigaraki's. "Yes. Our Sensei anticipated as much.", the phrase comes out matter-of-factly.
Blue bangs hang over Shigaraki's crusty face, casting a small shadow that ends just above his chin. "Now is our time to strike..", he lifts his head to cast it aside and see the screen more clearly. "This is the opportunity we've been waiting for!", a rapid jerk of unsettlement is enough to startle Kurogiri.
"We still need to wait on Daruma to finish making our secret weapon.", Kurogiri reminds his fellow villain that not everything is in order just yet.
"You're right.. Without our cheat, we won't stand a chance against the final boss..", Kurogiri refrains from sighing when Shigaraki begins speaking in video game terms. Even though All For One entrusted Tomura as his disciple, the villain is still young with a long way to go before maturing. "However.. I don't want to miss our perfect chance. Who knows how long we'll have before he leaves the district.", the scratching doesn't cease and will no doubt draw blood if it continues.
"In due time, Tomura.", both Kurogiri & Shigaraki freeze at the placid voice that radiates from a small monitor kept behind the bar. After recuperating from the initial surprise of his master's presence, Kurogiri goes through the motions of setting the small screen in front of Shigaraki. The monitor only displays text that reads 'Audio Only', but it allows for a more personal touch regardless. "If my sources are correct, we won't have to worry about a time table.", their master assures his student and acolyte.
"Sensei?", Shigaraki cranes his neck in curiosity. Even Kurogiri lends an ear in interest as to what plan their master has brewing.
"Supposedly, All Might is going to be teaching at U.A this year. I'm waiting on the spy we've planted to confirm whether or not this is the case.", All For One elaborates.
Shigaraki sits up in his seat, eyes wide with excitement. "That's why you wanted to use the brat? As a mole?", it's not nessicarly a question to be answered since they already know.
"There's a side project that Doctor Daruma intends to finish, but yes, the girl will be of use as a spy in the system.", All For One confirms, "Aside from All Might, she'll be gathering intel on her classmates for us as of today."
Shigaraki lets himself soften his posture; a pleased smile spreading across his decayed lips. "Excellent. We'll be able to know what kind of rigorous training those hero brats are put through, and then we can counter it with our full force.", he cackles with glee & anticipation.
Meanwhile, "Today's hero lesson is summed up as a simple game of 'capture the flag'.", Aizawa announces the homeroom activity to Class 1-A.
The collection of students begin to murmur to one another in excitement. The game is something that one would play during a field day, and it's just a regular portion of the hero course. Though they know better to say it outloud after Aizawa's logical rouse the other day. most of the class figured this would be a fun activity.
Leaving no room for the commotion to interrupt him, Aizawa continues speaking over it. "Normally, you'd all be wearing your hero costumes in order to become familiar with them, but there's still a few students that haven't turned in their forms. This is your last reminder.. you have until tomorrow to turn those in. Anybody that doesn't do so will miss out and the principal will see to it himself.", he pauses to slurp on some sort of juice pouch.
"Now, as for your physical lesson. The rules are simple. You'll be split into two opposing teams with your separate flags. Each team will choose a member to carry the flag and it's up to the opposing team to figure out who has it, as well as capture it. While that is your main objective, it isn't the only way to win. You can also wait out the timer, which will be a limit of fifteen minutes. If neither side captures a flag, then the match will end in a draw.", Aizawa takes another sip of his juice before asking, "Any questions?"
A girl with her hair tied into a pointed ponytail raises her hand. Aizawa nods his head to her, "Yaoyorozu. Go ahead."
"Are we going to choose our own teammates? How will be able to make a distinction between who's on our team and who isn't?", she rapidly spews out her questions.
"Good queries.", Aizawa briefly acknowledges her before gesturing to a set of laundry baskets that nobody happened to notice until now, "Think of these cloaks as team uniforms. There's red and there's green.", he lifts out what looks to be a parka with a hood attached.
"Ooh! Ooh! I call team Midori!", a floating gym uniform hops up and down, "Green matches my eyes!", nobody is able to tell if that's meant to be a joke or if she's being serious.
"Yeah, your last name and hair automatically makes you the team leader of green!", Kirishima slaps Izuku's back a little harder than necessary, causing the boy to stumble a little.
"Wh- Wha?! Me?!", Izuku points to himself nervously while glancing around in hopes that someone would interject.
"That brings me to my next point. You're free to create your own groups, since that's occasionally a part of strategy in bringing down villain organizations. However, you should bare in mind that this won't always be the case. Sometimes, you have no say in the matter and team ups are done with whatever hero happens to be on standby.", Aizawa is no help at all either. Izuku is forced to slouch in defeat & acceptance of the position he got placed in.
"If we're going by hair color, then wouldn't that make Kirishima the leader of red?", a girl in a crouched frog posture chimes in from the sidelines.
Kirishima lets out a bashful chuckle while avoiding eye contact, "Well.. My hair isn't naturally red. I actually dyed it..", nobody was really expecting that confession.
"Then I propose myself as team leader of red!", the bespeckled boy robotically gestures to himself.
Izuku sweatdrops, "Is he allowed to do that?", he wonders since he didn't really have a say in the matter of being elected leader on the opposite team.
"There you have it. Tenya Iida is the captain of red and Izuku Midoriya is the captain of green.", Aizawa's final sentencing leaves no room for argument. "You may both select a teammate one at a time. Whoever goes first, doesn't matter, you can flip a coin for all I care.", he begins to zips himself up into a sleeping bag now that his job explaining is finished.
"It's just like middle school when classes would pick teams for dodgeball!", the pink skinned girl exclaimed while lightly clapping in glee of the upcoming game.
"Midoriya! I shall let you do the honors of picking first!", Iida bows deeply to his opponent.
"Oh.. Uh.. Thanks?", Izuku awkwardly motions for the boy to stand back up. The greenette then turns his attention to the class, his eyes singling out his childhood friend first. "I guess I'd have to say.. Kacchan.", he points.
"Pfft. Fuck that!", the blonde barks before facing the other direction as if he were a fed up child.
"..E- Eh?", Izuku stands there completely bewildered. Everyone just looks completely confused.
"What do you mean, bro?", Kirishima jumps in front of Katsuki.
"I'm not following orders from Dekiru! I don't take orders! Fuck that shit!", Kacchan yells in protest.
"W- Well.. You don't really have a choice in the matter.. It's either Midoriya or Iida..", Kirishima nervously forces a laugh.
"FFF- FUCK! Fine!", he stomps his way over to Izuku before angirly snatching a green parka to wear over his gym uniform. "Just don't expect me to do what you tell me to! I'll choose what's best for the team! Ya got that?!", he then directs his frustrations at Izuku who's holding his hands up in mock surrender.
Iida clears his throat in an attempt to stop the blonde from complaining any further. "I suppose it's my turn now..", he then begins scanning the crowd before finally giving a nod towards Uraraka, "You there! You look like a valuable asset!"
"Ah, man.. I was gonna choose Uraraka..", Izuku mumbles under his breath in disappointment.
Kacchan just scoffs, "We don't need Chubby Cheeks to win."
"Then.. I guess I'll choose Jirou.", Izuku points to the girl with earphone jacks.
"Huh? Oh..", Jirou blushes slightly while brushing a bang behind her ear. "Sure..", she then joins the green side.
"Dammit, Dekiru! Choose shitty hair next time!", Kacchan glares at the girl before redirecting it at Izuku who jumps a few inches.
"Uh.. O- Okay, Kacchan!", Izuku rapidly nods as a promise.
"I pick Kirishima.", Iida aims a finger at the redhead.
Izuku mouths the word 'fuck' but can't bring himself to say it aloud when Kacchan throws it around like it's the only word in the dictionary.
"Uuuhh.. Uh, Kacchan? Wh- Who should I pick n- now?", the quivering greenette is too scared to look at the blonde directly. He flinches when some spit from Kacchan's ensuing swears splatters against his face.
"I don't give a shit! Just make sure they're actually useful!", he yells like a drill sergeant without any orders to give.
"Um.. You should probably choose Yaomomo. She's super smart from what I gather and her quirk is pretty helpful.", Jirou chimes in with a timid gesture to the ponytailed girl.
"O- Okay. Yeah, I choose Yao- Um.. yeah..", Izuku awkwardly shuffles from foot to foot as he takes the suggestion to heart.
This carries on for a while, the frog girl joining Iida & Uraraka's team while Izuku is opted to pick the invisible girl. The boy with a lightning streak in his hair joins red while Mashirao goes with green. Iida takes a flamboyant fellow while Izuku offers a place to a classmate with a bird beak & feathers. Eventually, everybody has chosen a side except for the peppermint haired boy, who joins Iida by default without so much as a word said.
"Oh, I forgot to add.. This version of 'capture the flag' comes with a catch. You'll be experiencing the trial in a mock city setting, so there'll be lots of ground to cover and large structures to hide in. To help you cover bigger areas faster, we'll be providing with you with these..", Aizawa wakes up from his nap to present a set of strange looking devices.
"Omni-directional mobility gear.. or 'ODM' gear for short.", it's then that another hero called Power Loader shows up. "I created these to reach higher heights. They use gas powered grappling lines to propel you into a 3D space as opposed to a 2D one.", he then begins to unhook the body harness one is connected to. "You'll be putting these on and becoming familiar with them for the next five minutes before we begin."
It was difficult to get the hang of. At first, it was a simple necessity of balancing oneself by being supported by two lines. However, the amount of strength and skill needed to manuever to ODM gear is only available to that of a hero. Steering yourself with them proved to be even harder when applying the gas' pressure too much.
While nobody is a professional by any means, Power Loader gave them enough tips to get everybody used to the strange movements. It was then that they could begin the game of 'capture the flag'.
Each team is given three minutes to prepare and come up with a plan after being placed on opposite sides of the zone. Green is gathered in a huddle, each member getting familiar with one another before beginning. Izuku learns the names of his teammates and their quirks.
Of course, he knows Kacchan who has the quirk called explosion. Then there's Jirou with her earphone jacks that are capable of amplifying sound and Yaoyorozu who can create anything from her lipids as long as she knows the ins & outs of it. Mashirao has his powerful tail and Tokoyami doesn't even have anything bird related to his quirk, it's just essentially a living shadow. Hagakure's evident invisibility should prove useful. Shoji, Sero, and Koda have useful quirks such as communicating with animals and creating extra limbs. It's quite the assembled force.
"First thing is first.. Who should hold the flag with them?", Yaoyorozu places the green cloth in the center of the huddle.
Izuku instantly looks at the blonde beside him, "Kacchan. He has the fire power to protect it and nobody would expect somebody other than the leader to be holding it."
While it's solid reasoning, Kacchan shakes his head in refusal. "I wanna be on the front lines! I'd rather find the fucker with the red flag than hide away with ours.", the blonde tries to keep his voice below a shout and just above a growl.
"Nobody is saying you'd have to hide. It'd be even more unexpected if you were to go charging in.", Izuku argues.
"I feel like that'd be too risky..", Hagakure's voice comes from a floating cloak.
"On the contrary, Midoriya may have a point. However, I feel like there's a better solution to this all.. we reverse the roles.", Tokoyami chimes in.
Everybody looks to the bird hybrid for further emphasis, who simply pulls the hood over his head as a short answer. "We conceal our identities. All of us. They won't know the difference between Bakugo or Midoriya, regardless.", he offers a simplification.
"You may now begin.", Aizawa's voice lazily drawls through several speakers that have been placed around the makeshift city.
"Okay. So, we're splitting into teams of two. Assault force and the flag carrier group.", Mashirao begins to break off from the full group.
"In the meantime.. Koda, do you think you could do some recon to keep us posted on the other team's movements?", Jirou turns towards the heavier set boy who's quirk had a slight mutational side effect in his appearance.
Koda doesn't speak, only nods. At that, everybody pulls up their hoods and departs.
Heading straight for the opposing side, there's a team of five. Mashirao tucks his tail under the poncho of sorts, trying to blend in with the others. Tokoyami and Shoji stay in the rear, trying to keep out of view so the enemy team won't be able to distinct their features. Just ahead of them are Jirou and that squad's leader. All of them cruise with ODM gear as birds controlled by Koda scout ahead.
Meanwhile, the secondary group loops around the back, following the wall. Sero, Koda, and Hagakure stay low to use the buildings as cover. Squirrels run along telephone poles and their wires just ahead, ensuring the area is clear before moving ahead. Just behind them are Yaoyorozu and that squad's leader.
Birds begin to chirp for the group heading north, indicating they're about to run into members of the red team. Tokoyami and Shoji split from the group, one going left and other heading right. The other three continue moving forward, preparing themselves for a confrontation.
Mashirao catches the glimpse of a red cloak up ahead, holding up a visual cue for everyone to know they've intercepted the enemy team. Coming a halt, the squadron leader and Mashirao stand on guard as Jirou plugs her earphone jacks into the rooftop they grappled to.
After a brief silence so she can listen in, Jirou unplugs them before addressing the others. "I hear footsteps in the direction that Shoji went, so we may have a problem there. As for the other red team members, I only heard two talking.", she recons the information.
"What were they saying?", Mashirao's questions gets overlapped with his squad leader asking, "Did you recognize the voices?"
"Only Uraraka's. I think the other one may have been Kaminari, but I can't be too sure.", Jirou slumps her shoulders with a shameful feeling, "Sorry that I wasn't as helpful as we'd hoped."
Before they can continue speaking though, they're suddenly assaulted by a barrage of purple spheres. The balls cling to the roof like velcro while others are barely dodged by the trio. One manages to snag Mashirao's cloak, but his palm sticks to it as well when he goes to pry it off. "Ah, what the hell?", he squeezes the strange sphere to feel a hairy quality to it.
It's then that the short grape haired boy reveals himself, a red cape dangling from his shoulders. "Why are you hiding your faces? Are any of you a girl?", he squints his eyes at the green group.
Jirou is about to plug in her jacks in order to blast him away with a soundwave, but her squad leader holds out an arm with a shake of his head. "We can't afford to use our quirks just yet; that would let them know who we are.", he warns.
It's then that Uraraka floats up behind them, making Mashirao whirl around to cover his team's back. She doesn't appear to be on the offensive, but she isn't defending anybody either.
"I think these three are just a decoy. Tell Kaminari to send a transmission to the others!", the gravity girl calls out to her teammate.
"We can't let them do that!", Mashirao calls over his shoulder to the other two.
After a second of hesitation, the squad leader shouts, "Fine! Permission to use your quirks is granted!"
"Finally!", the blonde martial artist tosses off his cloak so he can unfurl his tail. With one whomp of it colliding with the roof, he's launched into the air and straight into Uraraka. The two go crashing into a window, no doubt struggling with one another now that they are out of sight.
Jirou plugs in her jacks, but doesn't remove her hood just in case. Redirecting and amplifying her heartbeat, the pulse shatters the brick of the building across from her. Her classmate stops chucking the balls off his head and starts scrambling to escape the wreckage.
Spotting the collapsing structure, Kaminari uses his quirk to charge an antenna on his head to transmit a warning to his other teammates. "We're under attack just north of the base! Be on the lookout for more!", he warns.
"Copy.", a certain candy cane student replies.
Meanwhile, Shoji uses the last of his gas to greet the other squad. He pulls back his hood now that there's no use for it, "We came across the other team. You're gonna have to go with the more stealthy option. Sorry that we couldn't do a better job of diverting their attention.", he informs them of the situation.
Yaoyorozu shakes her head, "You did fine. We'll just have to do a better job of slipping through the fight."
"We're wasting time..", the leader of that battalion impatiently taps their foot.
"He's right. We need to go.", Sero steps forward.
Shoji nods his head, bidding them goodluck. Then, the team is off once again.
Back at the battlefield, Jirou runs alongside her squad's leader, both of them avoiding falling debris. The duo chose the riskier option of running through the rubble rather than retreat, assuming the enemies wouldn't find them under such circumstances.
Meanwhile, Mashirao wraps his tail around a steel pipe to avoid floating into the atmosphere. "H- Hey! Let me down!", he shouts while flailing his arms and legs.
"Sorry! No can do!", Uraraka waves over her shoulder while running off to aid her comrades.
As she runs to regroup with the other red members, she's relieved to see Asui climbing alongside the wall next to her. "Asui!", she calls out.
The frog girl leaps across the gap, joining Uraraka. "Call me Tsuyu.", she ribbits.
"Oh.. Okay. Then you can call me Ochaco?", the brunette stops for a second as she tries to catch her breath.
"What happened out there?", Tsuyu brings a finger to her chin in curiosity.
"Mashirao and Jirou are with somebody else. I tried to get ahold of Kaminari so he could radio it in, but some others might already be coming for our flag.", Ochaco gazes around the block to make sure there aren't any enemies that can eavesdrop.
"Don't worry. Todoroki-Kun and Kirishima-Kun already located the others.", Tsuyu assures her partner.
"In that case, can you and Iida back up Mineta? I'm gonna go after that other group too.", Ochaco begins to jog in that direction.
"You've got it. Kero!", Tsuyu then uses her tongue as a part of the ODM gear to grapple back towards the rooftops.
Jirou and her partner come to a halt when Iida glides through the street in front of them. "You won't be getting away that easily!", he confidently proclaims. The green duo take a step back, contemplating if they can outrun a speedster.
Elsewhere, the group of five that stuck together are intercepted by a squad of red. The pink skinned girl has laid out a pool of acid to cut them off and the flamboyant boy is firing a laser at them from his stomach. The beam catches Koda's zipline, making him pivot off course and crash into a vehicle prop.
In the midst of the ambush, Kirishima rams into Sero and forces the others to draw back. "On me!", Yaoyorozu calls out to her teammates while unsheathing her cloak. Desperate times call for desperate measures, so it's time to reveal herself for the sake of the others. Using her creation quirk, a canon is made and aimed at Kirishima.
The redhead only has the fraction of a second to harden his skin before a cannonball blasts him into a nearby building. Uraraka shows up at the exact moment, witnessing the retaliation with a gaping mouth at how her teammate was able to withstand the attack.
"Fall back!", Yaoyorozu waves for Hagakure and her squad's captain to retreat during the diversion. Being further outnumbered, a giant pillar of ice that could rival that of the titanic's iceberg cuts off the sector behind them. Standing atop the glacier is a boy with split hair, a breath of condensation coming out as vapor in his exhale of effort.
"Now what do we do?!", Hagakure begins to panic.
"One of them must have the flag if they weren't part of green's frontal assault.", the peppermint boy slides down the ice to land beside Uraraka and a recovering Kirishima.
Another sheet of ice consumes the remaining green group, leaving only their heads free so they can breath. The cold hearted red member flips off the hood of Hagakure before moving to the next. "It's over, Midor-", and doesn't expect to see Katsuki Bakugo grinning at him underneath.
"Get outplayed, jackass!", the ashy blonde shouts as if it's a signal. Which it may as well have been, cause a dark shadowy figure is shattering the ice as if on cue.
Standing at the helm of the being is Tokoyami, his own hood now removed. "I circled back when there was nobody in the left side. It seems my instincts were correct and I arrived just in time to assist.", he assumes a battle stance.
"If Bakugo is here, then.. Midoriya is leading the charge!", the boy with an ice quirk tries to fire off a grappling line but shifts to the other hand in order to create an icy barrier instead. One of Bakugo's explosions shatters the shield to several shards.
"I'm not done with you yet, half and half bastard!", the blonde has a feral grin while popping off more explosions. With an opponent such as this in his way, there's no other option than to fight.
"I'll help Todoroki! Everyone else go after Midoriya!", Kirishima yells as he charges at Bakugo.
Katsuki is occupied with shitty hair and icy schmuck as round face leads her other teammates away. Without bothering to shout or signal ponytail, she and the invisible chick are giving chase. The plan was going so well, but things are going to shit now.
Tokoyami is stuck here, having used all of his gas to reach them as a one man calvary. The girl who keeps spraying acid and the blonde that acts french try luring him away for their own fight, but he tries to stay close to Bakugo just in case.
Iida has one shot at this, but he needs to find out who's under the other cloak. Using all of the power he can muster in his engines, a recipro burst launches him forward. Going through the gap in between the green duo, he snags the hoods and pulls them off.
"Midoriya?!", Iida wasn't expecting the captain to put himself in the center of the fight. However, he too finds it admirable since he stayed on the sidelines just in case of a scenario such as this. The only issue.. he can't move until the engines in his calves recharge. However, his opponents don't know that. "You can't escape me!", he hopes they'll buy his bluff.
Izuku smirks as if he's already won, "I won't have to."
A tongue wraps around his waist and thrusts him into a collection of purple balls. The trap effectively puts Midoriya out of commission, he can't break free as long the spheres are stuck to him.
All that's left is for Jirou to be stunned by a discharge from Kaminari. She just barely manages to dodge it though, giving them a little resistance. It's at that point that a whole new slew of challengers come crashing into the fray. Uraraka and Yaoyorozu go tumbling into Jirou and Hagakure uses the momentum of her ODM gear to kick Kaminari back.
All it takes is one wrong move to turn the tide of the battle, and Iida is a sitting duck currently. He can rely on his teammates, but Midoriya is also trapped just ahead of him. Having put both their flags in jeopardy, he chooses to move first.
"I told you, Midoriya, you can't escape me!", he rips the cloak completely free now. Checking it for the flag to claim victory, he's baffled to find nothing.
"And I told you that I wouldn't have to.", Izuku never once stopped smirking.
"DIE, FOUR EYES!", an explosion plows into Iida's back as Kacchan arrives right in the nick of time. The cloak burns away, leaving the red team's flag exposed, ripe for the picking.
All along, Midoriya's team wasn't the assault force. Kacchan had the job of coming up the rear, being the true offense in their defensive position. Even though things had gone awry, it looks like they managed to prevail.
"Green team wins.", Aizawa announces in the most unenthused voice one could ever have.
"Looks like your plan worked, ya suicidal blockhead.", Jirou can't help but smirk too as she stands up from the aftermath.
"Putting yourself in danger like that, Dekiru..", Kacchan's sneer turns into a grin of its own, "That shit paid off, eh?"
Of course, Izuku left that part out in the retelling of the story to his mother. Inko and Izuku are sitting together in the kitchen, each sharing details about their day as they drink tea together.
Izuku absentmindedly doodles on the form he needs to finish by tomorrow. "Have you finished your homework?", Inko asks as she tries to sneak a peek at it.
"Not yet.. but today's exercise gave me an idea for the costume design, so I should be soon.", he doesn't glance up from the drawing once as he outlines the shape of a hood that's attached to elbow length cloth.
Don't worry; I'm still doing the Battle Trials. (Those are next.) I just wanted something to be in between.
As I teased at the end there, I'm going to be using the AOT scout regiment parka thing as an implemented suit design. I would go the whole nine yards and make it the whole getup but I already teased the brown jacket in a previous chapter.
In other news, I started my second story. Don't worry, this is still my main priority. However, if you like Tokyo Ghoul, you might be interested in reading 'Glassy Sky' since that's essentially Izuku with a ghoul type quirk.
Until next time, hope you enjoyed this somewhat lengthy chapter!
Chapter 11: Battle Trials Part I
"I HAVE..", the abrupt boom of a voice entering the room startles every student in the class, "-COME THROUGH THE DOOR, LIKE NORMAL!", and the red blur whizzing by is enough to blow everybody back in awe. Standing there after a relatively ordinary entrance.. is the number one hero, All Might!
The class bursts into a random selection of ooo's and awes, everybody fascinated to see the symbol of peace in person. Such a muscular body is the literal embodiment of being empowered. The hero is even wearing his Silver Age costume, bringing the nostalgia of their early childhood full swing. Two distinct tufts stick above his head, almost forming a V that would no doubt stand for victory.
"It's really him!", Hagakure wriggles in her chair due to so much pent up excitement.
"All Might is gonna teach us?!", Uraraka's jaw drops to the floor as if her quirk had been keeping it up until that point. Such astonishment, or perhaps disbelief, twinkles across her eyes.
It isn't just a group of fangirls though, nearly every boy in the class is also exclaiming how 'awesome' it is to have All Might as their teacher. Even Todoroki can't help but stay fixated on the hero's presence, and he's normally unphased by anything that happens.
Izuku has a goofy grin plastered across his face while Katsuki tries to suppress his own smile. Jirou peeks a glance at them, and instantly fails at holding in a laugh at how corny they both look.
All Might joins in, letting out a hearty guffaw at everybody's reaction to his arrival. The only one that looks unenthused is Aizawa, who's currently trying to bury himself in a sleeping bag under his desk.
Writing on the chalkboard at the speed of mercury, All Might reveals why he's even there. "No time! No dally! Today's activity is THIS!", he gestures to the Kanji that's sprawled out.
"Battle!", Kacchan reads the first half with an eager grin. "Training!", Izuku leans forward with anticipation as he finishes reading the second half of text.
"And for that..", All Might pauses for dramatic effect. "You'll need THESE!", he then whips out a remote from behind his cape. Clicking the only button on it, an array of lockers start descending from the ceiling upon activation. While most of the class is too dumbfounded by the presentation to think about it, Izuku is currently wondering where All Might was even keeping the remote; there doesn't appear to be any pockets on his uniform.
"In accordance with the 'quirk registry' and the special forms you filled out prior to being admitted, these shall be your personal-", All Might begins to elaborate on what's kept inside the lockers.
"COSTUMES!", only to be interrupted by an eruption of overly enthusiastic students. No longer capable of containing their excitement, some of them leap from their chairs and begin cheering.
Bellowing out another amused laugh, All Might motions for everybody to come up and grab their gear. "After you change, come out in ranking order to Ground Beta!", he then vanishes just as quickly as he appeared.
Izuku runs up with everybody else, eager to see what the support department managed to whip up according to the form he submitted. Glass cases flick open at the press of a fingerprint scanner, allowing the students to grab air sealed bags from inside. In these plastic carriers are their specialized uniforms, meant for transporting to the locker rooms.
The class is a stampede on the way to change, nearly everyone tripping over one another. Iida shouts at them for pushing and shoving, but gets completely ignored per usual. Katsuki curses anybody that gets in his way while simultaneously swearing at Izuku for not keeping up. Only Tokoyami and Todoroki are wise enough to walk leisurely behind the herd.
Once inside the boy's changing room, Izuku begins to open the plastic sealing with a giddy fiber only comparable to a child receiving a package from UPS. Green garments are inside, the first one to be pulled out is a similar cloak to the one that he wore during the game of capture the flag. Setting the poncho aside, Izuku moves on to the kevlar body suit. Black lines trace the edges of his shoulders and sides, leading to where an equally dark utility belt would get clipped.
After he sets a pair of boots and gloves on the bench behind his locker, Izuku and the other boys are beckoned by Minoru Mineta. Everyone is confused as to why he's wearing what looks like a diaper with purple spandex, but they're also wondering why he bothered calling them over.
"Guys! Guys! I discovered something crazy!", he gesticulates for everybody to come closer. Some of the boys are apprehensive since there seems to be some drool spooling from the weirdo's mouth.
"What is it, Mineta?", Kaminari asks from a relatively safe distance. The electric blonde stands behind Todoroki just in case he needs to use a human shield. Izuku takes notices of the boy's outfit; it looks more like casual wear than a hero costume, minus the strange antenna headphones and visor.
The pipsqueak needs to use a stool to reach it, but starts to peel back a rules & regulations sign. Iida looks so deeply offended that one could mistake him for being the one that created and put up the poster. "Take a look at this hole!", Mineta points at the small hollow spot.
Some of the boys start blushing, a few turning away or awkwardly shuffling in place. It takes Izuku a while longer than the rest to figure out why the mood suddenly turned uncomfortable.
"The other side is the girl's locker room! We've got the perfect peeping method!", saliva continues dripping onto the tile beneath him. Pretty soon, there's going to be a puddle.
Mineta looks ready to pounce, leaning towards the hole with a craving eye. Before he can catch a peek though, there's a red scarf lassoing around his throat. With a strangled gag, the pervert is flung onto his back. Everybody snaps their heads to look at the assailant, all of them shocked to see Izuku poised in his own predatorial stance. Even Kacchan goes slack jawed.
"If you try peeping on the girls again.. I'll kill you.", there's almost a radiating aura of bloodlust oozing out from the scarf wielder. Some of the boys back away, afraid to get too close. Kaminari shrinks further behind Todoroki. Kacchan looks more bewildered than afraid, but doesn't make a move or say anything either.
Mineta continues choking on the floor, trying to pry away the tight fabric gripping his throat. When Kirishima begins noticing a shade of blue appear on the boy's face, he forces himself to intervene. "Midoriya, man. That isn't very hero-like!", he takes a quick glance at Iida for some assistance but the bespeckled teen looks too startled to move.
"I wouldn't say a pervert is very hero-like either.", Izuku tightens his hold on the scarf, earning a desperate retching from his victim. Then, he lets the cloth go slack before reeling it back in. "I probably shouldn't ACTUALLY kill him though..", a defeated sigh escapes the greenette.
The other boys let out the breaths that they've been holding, relief flooding their system like the oxygen Mineta is greedily sucking in. While a few experienced his rageful rampage at the Entrance Exam and all of them experienced his minor breakdown at the Quirk Assessment, nobody expected such a torturous display. Not even Kacchan can come to terms with what he just witnessed. This cinnamoroll is a SINamonroll.
Listening in with her earphone jacks from the girl's locker room is Kyoka Jirou, who also can't believe what she just heard. The terrifying heartbeat from the Entrance Exam sounded softer now that it's smaller, like a vengeful anthem. Listening to Midoriya defend the girls from Mineta wasn't what she expected when her classmates coaxed her into trying to eavesdrop on the boys. After hearing him be so protective like that, she can't help but feel..
"Jirou! Your face is all red! Do you have a fever?!", Yaomomo asks with a voice full of concern. The precious girl even uses her quirk to create a thermometer to check on her friend.
Mina Ashido giggles at how innocently oblivious the ponytailed girl is. "I bet she looks that way because of a boy.", the pinkette slyly winks as she teases Jirou.
"OOoOO! Did you hear one of them confess over a crush?", Hagakure's floating undergarments jostle around as she skips over.
Jirou's jacks unplug before tangling themselves, an involuntary reflex from getting flustered. "N- No! It isn't like that!", she covers her face in an attempt to hide from the other girl's teasing.
"Oh yeeaahhh? Then what IS it like?", Ashido wiggles her eyebrows with a toothy smirk.
"It sure seems like there isn't any other reason for your arousal. Kero.", Tsuyu somehow makes that blunt statement an offhanded comment during her dressing.
"WH- WHAT?!", Jirou just wants to curl up and die now, which is exactly what she tries to do while sliding her back down the wall. Yaomomo stands over her friend, slightly panicking over the situation with no idea what to do. "I'm not -- What makes you say that, Tsuyu?!", Jirou pleads for mercy from her position on the floor.
"My 'frog' quirk gives me the ability to smell certain pheromones on people. You've got quite the stench on you. None of us will judge if you need a few minutes to relieve yourself. We'll cover with an excuse for Aizawa if-", Tsuyu just doesn't pull any punches with her response.
"Okay, that's too far!", Jirou interrupts with a desperate shout for her friend to stop talking. "I'm telling you all, it's not what you think!", she kicks and punches the air like a kid throwing a tantrum.
"Then, just explain what really happened?", Yaomomo interjects in an attempt to keep the peace. Even though she would love to engage in some kind of gossip, she also wants to spare Jirou.
Sighing heavily, the earjack user nods her head. "If you all want to know so badly.. Mineta tried peeping on us all through a hole in the wall and Midoriya stopped him.", she sums up everything she listened in on from the boy's side of the locker rooms.
"Mineta? What a creep!", Hagakure huffs in anger. The other girls nod in agreement with frowns on their faces.
"But wait.. You said Dekiru stopped him. How?", Uraraka finishes putting on a sports bra before facing the other girls.
"Dekiru?", Jirou asks first.
"Oh, it's just a nickname.", Uraraka waves it off with a careless explanation.
Jirou doesn't know why, but she feels a slight tugging on her heart and a hint of animosity towards the brunette. "Oh.. Okay..", is all she can muster aloud in fear of letting any swear words slip out. As of that moment, Jirou then decides to come up with a nickname of her own for Midoriya.
"So? Give us the juicy details on how Midoriya saved us from Mineta!", Ashido shuffles closer with a desire for hearing some drama. Tsuyu ribbits in agreement and Hagakure leans in more. Even Yaomomo looks interested in hearing more.
"Uh.. He.. He choked Mineta with a scarf and threatened to kill him..", Jirou doesn't really know any other way to describe it and instantly feels guilty that she may have just made all the girls afraid of him. The room is drowned in silence, nobody really knowing how to respond to that.
"That's kinda hot.", Tsuyu's poker face cracks like a mask when a soft blush dusts her cheeks. Jirou feels that same tugging on her heart again, and it only increases when some of the other girls have similarly red faces.
"Let's finish getting dressed..", Uraraka hastily begins slipping a pink outfit over her head to hide whatever face she's making. The other girls instantly follow suite, any teasing from before completely lost now that they're all heated too.
Jirou raises her eyebrows in confusion when Tsuyu walks over in order to crouch down and whisper something in her ear. "Don't worry. I know you like Midoriya, and I wouldn't be 'that girl' to try and steal him.", and then Jirou is left alone in the corner to continue steaming out of the ears.
Back on the boy's side, Iida finally worked up enough nerve to begin scolding Izuku for his actions. Mineta had long since scampered off with the other boys as protection. The only few that stayed behind were Todoroki, who has a weird fashion sense of encasing half his body in ice, and Kacchan.
When his childhood friend pauses on his way to the doorway, Izuku braces himself for whatever reprimanding the blonde might have. "Don't act like you wouldn't have done the same thing if I didn't do it first.", he tries to rationalize with Kacchan regardless of the impossibility of that ever happening.
Surprisingly though, Kacchan doesn't seem to be all the affected anymore, that or he does a good job of covering it up. "Tch. The pipsqueak deserved it.", Kacchan agrees before heading off.
Izuku lets out a sigh of relief since he wasn't prepared for any kind of confrontation when his friend is wearing what's essentially an arsenal of weaponry. Cargo pants, combat boots, actual grenades clipped to his belt, and gauntlets shaped like grenades themselves are quite the intimidating articles of clothing. Even the blonde's mask looks deadly with what looks like explosive points hanging off the back.
"Looking good is very important, ladies and gentlemen.", Izuku exits the tunnel that leads to Ground Beta just as All Might finishes whatever speech he was giving to the other students. "Look alive now! From this day forward, you're all wearing the appearance of heroes!", he boldly exclaims.
Looking around, Izuku can hardly agree for some of his classmates. Mashirao is only wearing a karategi with his black belt and Hagakure is just a pair of gloves & boots. Even Jirou didn't bother with a full getup, her 'costume' looks like a regular civilian's clothing despite some amplifiers in her boots.
Uraraka bounded over then, instantly recognizing Izuku with his hood down. "Dekiru! Cool costume! Really practical!", her voice is slightly muffled behind a pink visor that covers her entire face.
"Uraraka.. Whoa..", Izuku wishes he had some kinda mask now too as blood rushes to his face over her appearance. The costume may as well be spandex with how tightly it's clinging to her body.
"I wish I'd been more specific on MY request form..", she pouts while self consciously pinching at the fabric in an attempt to loosen it a little, "This is so puffy and curvy.. it's embarrassing.."
Come to think of it, most of the girl's outfits look overly sexualized in some manner. Tsuyu has a wetsuit that shows off her own curvaceous figure and Yaoyorozu lets what may be too much of her skin breathe. A short skirt and an opening in the front of what's basically a red one piece swimsuit is all the ponytailed girl has on. Ashido has a tye dye leotard that's also skintight. Hagakure is essentially naked if you really think about it!
Izuku mentally bleached himself, blaming it on whatever teenage hormones may be trying to surface. He just got done threatening a pervert; it'd be ironically hypocritical of him to act the same way now.
"It looks like everybody has finally gathered! Now, we can begin!", All Might is ever the hero by saving Izuku from having to deal with that particular turmoil any further.
"Sensei!", what looks like a cosplay of something ripped straight from Mobile Suit Gundam shoots its hand in the air. "This appears to be the same field used during the Entrance Exam. Will we be conducting cityscape maneuvers again?", Izuku figures that must be Iida dressed as a literal white knight.
"Good guess, but not quite!", All Might flashes an encouraging thumbs up to Iida before revealing what the actual lesson will be, "After learning how to cooperate with one another as a team, it's time that you all move on to the next step! You'll be experiencing Indoor Anti-Personnel Battle Training!"
A ripple of murmurs spreads through the crowd of students, only to be silenced by All Might clearing his throat. "Statistically, the most heinous villains are more likely to be found hiding indoors. Between Confinement, Black Market Dealings, and House Arrest.. the cleverest of villains in this hero society lurk in buildings.", he speaks so slowly that he must be improvising an explanation or he's earnestly trying to convince himself more so than the students.
Tsuyu raises a finger to her chin, a habit that Izuku started noticing from her that usually indicates she's about to ask a question. However, All Might is already carrying on with a more boisterous voice, as if he anticipated there might be questions and has to beat her to the punch.
"YOU'LL NOW BE SPLIT INTO TEAMS OF DUOS! HEROES.. and VILLAINS! You will then be facing off in two-on-two indoor battle trials!", All Might holds up two fingers on either hand. Due to the hero's rictus grin, it could easily be mistaken as 'kawaii' peace signs that an overly enthusiastic schoolgirl would flash.
"There's no basic training first?", Tsuyu manages to get her input out this time.
All Might clenches a hand into a fist, it slightly shakes as if he's squeezing a stress ball. "Practical experience teaches you the basics!", he counter argues, "The only distinction here is that you won't be fighting disposable robots."
Iida nods along like he understands perfectly, "And an even clearer distinction during 'Capture The Flag' was the availability of space and mobility; whereas the potential to get injured is far greater when in close quarters."
"Aahh.. YES!", All Might shouts a little too loudly to be normal while simultaneously snapping his fingers in agreement, "You are correct, Young Iida Tenya!"
"Excuse me, sir. May I ask what determines victory?", Yaoyorozu raises her hand for All Might to see.
Before the hero can answer her question though, Kacchan is interrupting with his own. "Can I just blast everyone away?", his intimidating growl makes the students around him start to inch away.
"Are you going to threaten to expel one of us like Aizawa-Sensei did?", Ashido worriedly whined from the back of the group.
Since everybody is just talking over one another now, even Iida chimes back in with his own question. "How do we proceed to divide ourselves into teams?", he chops one hand robotically while holding up the other in an attempt to flag down the teacher.
"How fabulous is my cape?", that last one doesn't even have anything to do with the training. A few people sweatdrop as the flamboyant student twirls around in a glittery cape and a prince's armor plate.
All Might is shaking so badly that Izuku worries his hero is about to have a seizure. "Ah, um, one at a time everybody!", he desperately pleads as sweat rolls down his face. On the verge of what looks like a panic attack, All Might whips out a miniature notebook that looks comically small in comparison to his massive hands. "Listen here, these are the instructions!", he exclaims while using the pamphlet as a shield.
"A cheat sheet..?", a few students give their teacher a skeptical look.
"The villain team is tasked with defending a nuclear weapon in the hideout; the heroes have to go in and take care of it! The heroes have a limited amount of time to either capture the villains or secure the weapon. The villains must either capture the heroes or protect the weapon until the timer runs out.", All Might reads the book word for word before looking up with a proud smile.
"You never told us how the teams will be chosen..", Mashirao raises a finger to literally point that out while chuckling nervously in the worries that he might upset All Might.
"AH! Uuuhh.. Ummm..", All Might begins to frantically search the area for a solution. God must be on his side, because the hero somehow manages to locate two boxes with paper slips in them. "Your battle partners will be decided by drawing lots!", All Might cries out in relief.
"Is that really the best way?!", Iida ridicules the decision.
"It's just like Aizawa-Sensei said during Capture The Flag; pros often have to team up with heroes from other agencies on the spot during emergencies.", Izuku decides to lend All Might a hand by sparing the hero from coming up with his own solution.
"Exactly!", All Might points towards the greenette as if HE'S the teacher.
"Makes sense.", Yaoyorozu nods along in agreement.
"I see! I apologize for getting ahead of myself! My mistake!", Iida begins bowing deeply to both the hero and his classmates.
"It's fine!", All Might pumps a victorious fist into the air now that there's no more difficult questions, "Let's just get to training!"
All Might then whips out the tags that determine who gets paired together and what side they'll be placed in. "First up! Team A, villains, are Ochaco Uraraka and Eijiro Kirishima!", he announces.
"Let's do our best!", Kirishima clenches a fist in determination as he steps next to his partner. Izuku spares a look at his friend's hero costume, noting that his bare chest is showing and what looks like a muzzle is mounted to his head. A red R is attached to a belt that holds up black cargo pants, so that must stand for something. Izuku figures he'll ask later when the time is more reasonable.
"On Team B, we have our HEROES, Tsuyu Asui and Fumikage Tokoyami!", All Might points to the frog and bird hybrids who seem content to work with eachother as well.
"You can count on my assistance.", Tokoyami gives a small bow to his teammate who returns the gesture with an appreciative nod.
"I'll announce the other teams as we progress! Until then, the villain team enters the building first!", All Might thrusts a thumb to the structure behind him. "The timer starts in five minutes, when the hero team sneaks in.", he then motions for everybody else to follow him. "The rest of us will watch via CCTV!", he proclaims.
"Just like that, huh?", Kirishima rolls his shoulders in order to loosen them up for an upcoming battle. "We should probably get going then.", and he heads inside with Uraraka.
"We should probably stick together, right?", Uraraka asks as they walk up a staircase.
"You're right. We stand a better chance that way. If the hero team chooses to split up, it'll be an easier fight, even if two versus one is unmanly..", Kirishima reluctantly agrees.
Once they reach the nuclear weapon, both students gasp in awe. The prop looks so real, like an actual explosive rocket. Kirishima knocks on it to check, grinning when he feels how hollow it is. "Paper mache?", he guesses.
Meanwhile, Tokoyami and Asui stand by just outside. "Shall we go over the blueprints as we wait, Asui?", the feathered student gestures to a table with the building's layout printed across it.
"Call me Tsuyu.", the greenette says it like an automated response before approaching the desk. She spares a look at her partner's costume, noting that it's a cloak like Izuku's, only it's missing a hood and the color is black.
"Very well, Tsuyu. Let's develop our strategy.", Tokoyami joins her in skimming the blueprints.
From the monitor room, their classmates and All Might watch from various television screens that are mounted above a control panel. "Watch closely and try to learn something, everyone!", their teacher address the students with him before pressing a button that allows for him to speak into a microphone, "Your Indoor Battle Training starts now!"
Given the announcement through speakers that are placed around the area, the hero team advances on the building and the villain team raises their guard.
Tsuyu uses her frog quirk to scale the building, followed closely behind by Tokoyami who's living quirk uses its claws to climb. Once they pass a few floors, Tsuyu climbs through a window. "Successful infiltration.", Tokoyami absentmindedly speaks as he checks his surroundings.
"There are a lot of corners that make blind spots.. Be careful.", Tsuyu also scans the area before proceeding to venture into the facility.
Meanwhile, Kirishima and Uraraka are making preparations of their own. The gravity girl stands by the window in case they use that as a point of entry while the redhead waits at the door.
"Dark Shadow. Provide reconnaissance.", Tokoyami communicates with the shadow entity connected to his stomach. "Aye.", it follows the command by peering over the staircase. When it returns, it gives a nod of confirmation.
"I'll scout ahead then. You be my backup. Ribbit.", Tsuyu starts climbing her away onto the ceiling in an attempt to sneak past Kirishima.
Tsuyu manages to get in close, capable pouncing distance from the nuclear prop. However, it's then that Uraraka discovers her and the two are sent barreling across the floor upon tackle.
"You'll need to work on your stealth skills, Tsuyu. Don't frogs have camouflage?", Uraraka jests the other girl as they rise to their feet.
"I'll keep that idea in mind, Ochaco.", Tsuyu croaks.
"Uraraka!", Kirishima is about to lend assistance, but he's forced to block with his hardening quirk as Dark Shadow plows into him.
"You've got your own battle to focus on.", Tokoyami raises his hands like a puppet master that wields the entity emitting from him.
Uraraka dodges a kick and jab, raising an arm to block another kick as she watches Kirishima withstand a barrage of attacks from Dark Shadow. The redhead takes the hits directly as he charges his opponent head on, seemingly unphased by the assault. When Uraraka is certain that her teammate can handle himself, she turns her attention back to fighting Tsuyu.
From the monitor room, classmates watch with awe. "Who knew that Round Face can fight?", even Kacchan sounds mildly impressed.
"Look at how Kirishima is tanking those hits! He's a beast!", Kaminari points with the same giddiness as somebody that would bet on a boxing match.
"Even Tsuyu is displaying quite the technique.", Yaoyorozu carefully watches the monitor that shows the greenette leaping with the agility of a frog.
Bouncing off the heels of her feet, Tsuyu is practically ricocheting to avoid getting grabbed by Uraraka. Occasionally, the frog girl lashes out with a kick that sends Uraraka pivoting.
Suddenly, the two girls are thrown off balance by the floor cracking beneath them. An indent is created where Kirishima is forcefully ramming into Dark Shadow like a linebacker. The creature lashes out with its claws, clashing against the hardened flesh and drawing up sparks like its banging on flint.
Tsuyu uses that moment as a distraction, firing her tongue over Uraraka's head so it can latch onto a loose beam. The brunette can only gasp in surprise as the greenette soars over her head. Tsuyu is about to land on the objective, when Uraraka snags her ankle.
Succumbing to zero gravity, Tsuyu hits the ceiling. "That was a good fight.. Do you mind teaching me your kicks some day?", Uraraka breathes a sigh of relief.
"Sure. Ribbit.", Tsuyu lets herself so slack now that she's been incapacitated, accepting defeat.
Meanwhile, Kirishima is still going toe to toe with a literal monster. Dark Shadow engages the redhead in a slug fest, each one trading blows with little to no damage as a result. If this were to go on, the timer would definitely run out. Uraraka doesn't want to wait on the victory or take that chance though, so she runs over to help her partner.
Uraraka touches a few pieces of rubble along the floor, gathering them in her visor to chuck at Tokoyami. The feathered fink is in a stalemate now. Whether Dark Shadow protects his user from the rocks or continues fighting Kirishima, Tokoyami is open for attack.
The living shadow chooses to shove Kirishima aside and jumps in front of its owner. While the pebbles just bounce off Dark Shadow with no effect, Kirishima is free to land a blow to Tokoyami's beak. The bird boy is laid out, rendered unconscious.
"Oh.. Whoops. I forgot to unharden my fist..", Kirishima awkwardly laughs as he turns off his quirk, even though it's too late to take back the punch.
"Looks like the villain team wins.", All Might concludes the match, "We'll break momentarily so Tokoyami can be brought to Recovery Girl and then we can continue with the next round."
After Tokoyami was brought to the nurse on a stretcher, the remaining three arrived at the monitor room. "Since the last building was damaged, the next battle trial will be conducted in a new one.", All Might informs the class once everybody is ready.
Uraraka then shyly raises her hand, she waits for All Might to point at her before speaking. "Um.. Is it okay if I call my parents and tell them I won? I just.. they'd be super happy to hear it and..", she rubs her elbow and twists a foot on her toe due to nervous body language.
"Sure thing! You can step out for a few minutes -- but hurry back, don't drag it on!", All Might nods as he shoos her out of the room. Uraraka gives him a thankful bow before pulling out her cellphone and exiting.
"Tch. How old is she that she needs to call her parents?", Kacchan grumbles with a roll of his eyes. Izuku jabs his friend's side with an elbow, "Ow! Fuck!"
"OKAY!", All Might shouts before the other students start saying anything more, "Let's move on!"
The hero digs into the boxes to pull out the next slips and announce, "Villains this time are Momo Yaoyorozu and Mina Ashido!"
The pinkette rubs her hands together while doing her best impersonation of an evil laugh. The pony tailed girl sighs while rubbing the bridge of her nose, unamused.
"Their opponents will be the hero team; Minoru Mineta and Denki Kaminari!", All Might points to the two boys that are too busy thumb wrestling to hear the announcement.
That match is rather eventful.
It starts with Ashido using her acid to burn away the staircases in order to make it difficult for the hero team to reach them. Meanwhile, Yaoyorozu creates various traps with her quirk, ranging from tripwires to falling nets.
Mineta ends up using his sticky balls to the climb the floors while Kaminari gets himself instantly caught in a trap. The blonde is left to hang upside-down by his leg, blood rushing to his head. The pipsqueak ventures onward. This is where the class could sense things were going to take a turn for the worst, Mineta being alone with two girls and all.
The diaper wearing pervert spent most of the round ogling the girls from a hidden vantage point. Some students tried telling All Might, but the hero was convinced that the boy is just staking the enemies out.
It's then that Mineta strikes, the girls don't expect a barrage of purple spheres to bombard them. Ashido ends up tripping, getting effectively stuck to the floor. Yaoyorozu backs into a wall, the balls on her back planting her in place.
"Eww. These things are all hairy!", Ashido squirms in place as she tries to break free from Mineta's trap.
"I can't believe we lost to Mineta of all people..", Yaoyorozu hangs her head in shame.
However, it didn't stop there. Rather than just claiming the objective and securing the victory, Mineta decides to gloat a little. Tossing one of his spheres up and down in his hand like it's a baseball and he's the pitcher, the pipsqueak chuckles to himself. "Well, well, well.. What do we have here?", his eyes work up Yaoyorozu's body as he licks his lips.
"S- Sensei.. Maybe you should end the match..", Jirou shudders as she watches the screen that's displaying Mineta's odd behavior.
"Yeah. I'm getting a 'rapey' vibe from him..", you don't need to see the invisible girl to know she's cringing too.
All Might hums as he contemplates what his students are saying. Pressing the button that allows him to speak through an intercom, he leans into the microphone. "Mineta, don't dally. Touch the nuke and end the exercise.", he commands.
Mineta lets out a soft 'eep', startled by the sudden voice of All Might. Wildly glancing around, it's like he forgot he was on surveillance footage. "R- Right..", he then jogs over to the weapon.
Yaoyorozu lets out the breath that she was holding and Ashido sighs in relief that she wasn't next.
It's then that Mineta is dumb enough to step on one of the landmines Yaoyorozu created near the objective. While the explosion is only meant to stun, it was an absolute pleasure to witness the grape headed pervert get blasted through the ceiling.
"Oh.. Ah.. It's a draw? Villain team wins?", All Might scratches his head as he tries to come up with a verdict.
Afterwards, the next round was moved to a new location once again due to the damage left behind. "This time, our heroes are Yuga Aoyama-", the flamboyant blonde interjects with what sounds like an orgasm, "Uuuhh.. and his partner, Mashirao Ojiro..", All Might finishes.
"Let's try and win?", the tailed boy nervously holds out his hand to shake his teammate's.
"Non! Tu es sale!", the boy doesn't return the gesture which makes the situation only increasingly awkward for them both. The kid isn't even french! Why does he bother putting on that strange charade?!
"Their challengers, the villains, shall be Koji Koda and Mezo Shoji!", All Might finishes reading the slips.
That match.. is a disaster for the hero team.
Aoyama spends the entire match looking at himself in a window's reflection while Mashirao fights the villain team all alone. When Shoji bodyslams the tailed fighter, it's basically over.
"My work here.. IS DONE!", Aoyama bows just as he loses the match.
"But you didn't do anything..", Mashirao groans in pain from his spot on the floor.
Aoyama's only response is tossing his cape up in the air as he turns to leave.
"I'm sensing a pattern. So far, only the villain team has been winning..", All Might surmises once his class is gathered again. Even Uraraka is back from her phone call now.
"What took ya so long?", Kirishima flashes her a grin to let her know that he's just teasing.
"I was too busy telling them about you.", Uraraka jokes back.
"Moving on to the next match!", All Might interrupts the playful banter, "The hero team this time will be Shouto Todoroki and Rikido Sato. The villain team consists of Kyoka Jirou and Hanta Sero!", the announcement carries into the next round.
Starting off, Jirou plugs her jacks into the ground so she can listen carefully for the enemies. However, the hero team never bothers to enter the building. Todoroki simply kneels down and places a hand on the ground, ice shooting out from it.
"Our opponents think they're playing a defensive game, but that means nothing to me.", the icy teenager speaks as the structure is frozen. Jirou only has a split second to unplug her jacks as a sheet of ice turns the floor into a skating rink.
"Whoa..", Sato's awe inspired gasp is seeable due to the humidity in the air.
All that remains is for the hero team to leisurely stroll into the complex and claim the objective. Jirou and Sero are unable to do anything due to their feet being encased in ice, the rest of their bodies shivering in the dropped temperature.
"He immobilized the enemy without harming his ally or the nuclear weapon!", All Might exclaims in fascination, "Color me impressed!"
The crunching of ice from Todoroki's shoe soles stepping towards the objective gives Jirou a sharp pain in her ears. "Sorry about that. We're just in different leagues.", the cocky boy places his hand on the nuke.
"Hero team wins!", All Might ends the match. "Jirou and Sero, I suggest you go see Recovery Girl to avoid getting hypothermia.", the hero adds as an afterthought.
"Um, All Might?", Izuku tugs on the hero's cape to gain his attention. "Is it okay if I go check on them for a minute?", he timidly asks.
All Might hums in consideration, "It's admirable that you're concerned for your classmates. Just make sure you don't take too long."
"Thank you!", Izuku bows in appreciation before running off.
Arriving at the nurse's office, slightly out of breath, Izuku stumbles through the door to see Jirou with a thermometer hanging out of her mouth. "Mi roh ree argh?", a garbled slur is her surprised reaction before yanking the tool out, "Midoriya!? What are you doing here?"
Recovery Girl turns on the stool, equally confused as to why the boy is there. "I came to see if you're doing okay.", he speaks in between breaths of air. The nurse smiles softly at that, touched by the action or relieved that he isn't another patient.
"She just needs to warm herself with a heater and some blankets. She'll be back to class in time for lunch.", Recovery Girl gives the diagnosis.
Jirou doesn't say anything, but the warmth in her chest is a good start to that recovery. "Thanks for checking on me, but you didn't have to run all the way down here..", she can't bare to look him in the eyes without blushing so she redirects her gaze to the floor.
"O- Oh, I just thought that you could maybe use this.", Izuku places a hand on his scarf to lightly tug on it. "It should help warm you up and.. it doesn't really match my hero outfit anyways..", he nervously laughs while trying to give her some reasoning that might as well just be excuses to see her.
Recovery Girl leaves the room to give them some privacy, sighing to herself on the way out, "Young love.. How I miss it.."
Neither teen happens to hear her remark, which is rather fortunate granted that they'd probably fall into a coma from the embarrassment alone.
"Oh, Midoriya.. That's really sweet, but-", Jirou twirls a jack on one of her fingers while trying not to simultaneously play with her hair.
He's already unwrapping the scarf from around his neck so he can hand it over, "Really, I insist! I mean, y- you need it more than I do."
A light blush dusts her face as Izuku drapes the scarf over her neck & shoulders. Perhaps it's from being worn prior to now, but she already feels the warmth emitting from its soft texture, like something coming fresh out of the laundry. That doesn't make the situation for her any less embarrassing though. "O- Oi! You big dummy!", she raises her jacks as a threat to jab him.
Izuku backs away with his hands gesturing in mock surrender, a small goofy grin on his face. After all the light hearted teasing she gave him, it felt good to get a little payback.
It's then that the intercom chimes with an indication for the people in the nurse's office to pay attention. "Midoriya, it's your turn. Hurry back.", All Might orders him from the speakers.
"Looks like I'm needed..", Izuku bashfully toys with his hair while glancing towards the exit and then back at Jirou.
Now that the source of her embarrassment is leaving, Jirou is able to recover from earlier. Being coy to an extent, she returns his grin with a smirk. "Save the best for last. Right?", she jocularly jests him.
Laughing along, he gives her a wave on the way out. "If that were the case, then it would've been you.", his comment is made just as he turns the corner to avoid getting stabbed by Jirou's jacks.
"D- Dummy..", the girl pouts with a bigger blush than before. She then sinks her chin deeper into the soft fabric of the scarf that she was gifted, a small smile planted on her face.
Chapter 12: Battle Trials Part II: Kacchan VS Dekiru
Clenching his fist with valor, Izuku fixes his gaze from the ground to the building in front of him. Raw determination radiates from his vibrant green eyes as they scan the structure's exterior, analyzing every bit of it for a tactical advantage.
"I'm so relieved that there's no punishment for failure like with Aizawa-Sensei. We don't really have to worry about winning so much then, huh?", Hagakure's disembodied voice loses its cheerful tune, "..YOU look a little worried though.."
Izuku turns his head when he hears the concern in her tone, attempting to stare where he thinks her head may be. "Ah, well.. We're up against Kacchan.", he glances back at the building that his frenemy is in, "I don't wanna lose to him."
"Waahh, so cooolll! What are you two, like, fated rivals or something?!", her voice is right beside him now, startling Izuku enough to make him jump a few inches.
He shakes his head with a bashful smile, "Not really. We're just close friends..", but he also remembers what the blonde said before the match.
After All Might announced Midoriya & Hagakure as the hero team, Iida and Bakugo were placed on the villain side. As each respective duo headed to the testing site, Katsuki approached Izuku with a spark in his eyes that could cause an explosion without the boy's quirk. "I want you to go all out, ya hear me? We didn't get to finish our fight on the beach and this is retribution for that shit..", Kacchan then quickened his pace with the final words, "Don't disappoint me."
"He'll come after me as soon as the match starts. Whether I SHOULD go looking for a fight or not, HE WILL.", Izuku pulls the costume's hood over his head to get battle ready, "That's exactly why I need to prove myself to him!"
Hagakure clasps her gloves together with an eager squeal, "That's so cool!", she takes a second to compose herself before saying, "Okay then, count me in! We're gonna actually try to win this thing!"
Izuku gives her an appreciative smile & nod, "Thank you, Hagakure."
The two then turn their attention to the blueprints that were given to them. "Okay, you said Bakugo will most likely come after you and we need a game plan to counter that, so..", Izuku feels a light tug on his cloak, "Maybe I should wear this in order to try and throw him off."
The greenette frowns as he considers her suggestion, "That's a good plan, but..", he then shakes his head. "Kacchan won't hold back. Especially if it's me that he's coming after. I wouldn't want to take the risk of him hurting you with that trick.", Izuku turns his head towards her again so she can see the sincerity in his expression.
The invisible girl huffs, her gloves moving in a way that must be her crossing her arms. "Well, I don't see you coming up with anything better.", her pout makes Izuku hang his head with some guilt.
"I.. I was just gonna suggest that we split up.", the greenette mumbles.
"WHAT?!", Hagakure shouts in disbelief, "Wouldn't that just be even more dangerous?!"
Izuku shakes his head with a pensive frown, "Not if we do this right.", he then points to certain parts of the building's blueprints. "If you can sneak past Iida while I distract Kacchan, then it should be a quick and easy win.", he then pats a pouch on his utility belt, "I can ensure Kacchan focuses on me more by leaving behind something that he can follow."
"Alright.. Then I'm going all out! The gloves and boots are coming off!", the invisible girl begins undressing whatever clothing she has left. Izuku is instantly reminded that Hagakure is practically naked and hastily splits away to enter the building.
"I- I'll get a head start!", he says as an excuse while slapping his cheeks to try and get some of the redness to go away.
Kacchan paces impatiently as Iida stands by the nuclear prop with his hands on his hips. "Training or not, assuming the role of a villain pains me..", the bespeckled boy grumbles behind his helmet.
"It doesn't matter what side we're on; I just need to crush that shitty nerd!", Kacchan snaps at his partner while pausing his walk.
"But our goal is to guard the objective. There's no need to-", Iida gets cut off by Kacchan flashing a set of middle fingers.
"YOUR goal can be sitting here with that crap!", the blonde turns on his heel to face the doorway, "I'M going after Dekiru!"
It's then that the timer starts, "BEGIN!", All Might signals everybody.
As he climbs the stairs, Izuku drops a few caltrops on the steps behind him. The metal spikes not only serve as a trail for Kacchan to follow, but they cover his path in case Iida comes running through. According to the blueprints he memorized, Izuku is headed away from the objective, but it's all in order to lure Kacchan away from Hagakure.
The invisible girl is using the empty elevator shaft as her own route, climbing the emergency ladder to reach the objective. With the stairs out of order and occupied, it wasn't like she had any other option.
Izuku stops going up just a floor below the one with the fake bomb. The greenette makes sure to leave the door open to make his path apparenet. At each corner, Izuku drops a couple more caltrops, hoping to utilize the blind spots. He does this until the pouch in his utility belt is completely empty.
With nothing better to do than wait, Izuku brings a finger to the commlink in his ear, "Hagakure? You there?"
It takes a few seconds, but the earpieces buzzes in confirmation. "Yeah, I haven't run into Iida or Bakugo yet, so that's good. I'm still in the elevator shaft though, I think I've got two more floors to go..", her voice echoes through the static.
"Alright, try and keep me posted. Don't hesitate if you need help.", Izuku sighs in relief that his plan hadn't gone south yet.
"Same goes for you.", Hagakure chimes back before ending the transmission.
Izuku idly sways back and forth, pondering his options and what he should do next. Deciding that it's a bad idea to sit still, he goes to turn the corner and head back. There's a chance he'll intercept Kacchan or even the possibility that the blonde stayed with Iida by some slim choice.
There's a sudden flash of light, the rising of heat on his face makes Izuku turn away on instinct. When an eruption of flames dances across the walls and directly at the greenette, his eyes widen at the prospect of danger. He lets out a grunt from the impact as he rolls with the blast.
"An ambush?! That's low; sneak attacks are unmanly!", Kirishima criticises what he just witnessed from the monitor room.
"However, it's quite effective.", Yaoyorozu raises a finger in order to both figuratively and literally point out.
"Doesn't matter! That Midori sure can dodge!", Ashido would be on the edge of her seat if she had one. If there was popcorn, the pinkette would no doubt be munching on it.
Izuku coughs as he inhales the plumes of smoke from Kacchan's explosion. The greenette is thankful for the hero course's costume, since the kevlar-like substance appears to have some level of being fire proof. However, flames flicker around the cloak that's draped over his shoulders, and Izuku is forced to rip it off if he wants to avoid getting burned.
The blonde is surrounded by ash and soot, his palms still steaming from the attack. "Get up, Dekiru. We're just getting started!", Kacchan starts stomping towards his opponent with a feral grin.
Meanwhile, Jirou returns to the monitor room. Nobody bothers to greet her, she doubts that any of them even noticed her enter. It then becomes apparent why, her eyes wandering to the screen that they're all watching. Jirou can't restrain a worried gasp when she spots her friend's predicament; it's no wonder that the class has their eyes glued to the screen.
Izuku makes use of his crouch, turning it into a defensive stance. The boy's hand reaches for his scarf, something that's become a habit whenever finding himself in combat. However, Izuku is dismayed when his hand grabs nothing but air. Remembering that he gave the weapon to Jirou, he makes a last second retreat to avoid getting caught by another blast.
Only Jirou happened to notice the boy's small gesture; her own hand traces the soft fabric that's wrapped around her neck. A ping of guilt runs through her that she took something so important to him, especially when he needs it to fight somebody as ferocious as Bakugo.
"Come on! Bring it!", Katsuki is fuming since all his enemy has done is evade the explosions.
Sucking in a deep breath, Izuku gives a curt nod in agreement to his friend's request. Unclipping another pouch on his utility belt, Izuku pulls out what looks like an ordinary yo yo. Exhaling, Izuku unstrings it, letting the axle drop and spin.
Kacchan's face scrunches up in a perturbed sneer, "What the fuck? What's with the yo yo?"
"It's something I tried using before deciding to go with a scarf. For both our sakes, let's hope I'm not rusty in using it.", Izuku whips the axle in an overhead arc before reeling it back in with the string.
Izuku then swings the yo yo down, letting the axle shoot out in a forward launch. Kacchan swerves to the side, avoiding it completely. Yet, Izuku has learned how to control the string like an extra limb, all of his practice with the scarf having paved the way for something lighter. Mid momentum, the yo yo swings back around with a twitch of Izuku's hand, cutting under Kacchan's arms that try raising up to block it. Then, the blonde gets pegged on the chin.
Kacchan flips with the impact, using his explosions to descend and land a few feet back. "Damn..", he curses under his breath, "Between the weight and centrifugal force, that shit really hurts.."
The blonde raises his head, massaging a sore chin. Watching the greenette loop the yo yo over his underarm and snatch it in his hand, Katsuki is already coming up with a way to make him lose the toy that's turned into a weapon.
When Izuku swings the yo yo in a wide arc again, Kacchan uses explosions to propel himself. Once he's above the sweep attack, he proceeds to launch himself forward with more controlled booms. Izuku anticipates the blonde will give it his all to get in close though, so he whips the yo yo in an upward swing.
Katsuki grins, his prediction in what the nerd would do next is exactly what happens. The head on assault was merely a feint; the real goal was to grab the yo yo by its axel and detonate an explosion strong enough to destroy it. With the weapon out of the way, Izuku will be forced to use his quirk.
Suddenly, something hard thwacks the back of Katsuki's head. The blonde's vision blurs and his head throbs, sending him off course and towards the floor. Landing on his shoulder to lessen the impact of his weight, Katsuki topples along the ground. As he rubs the ache of his skull, the blonde flashes a quick look to check if he managed to destroy the yo yo. Sure enough, seared pieces of burnt plastic are all that remains.
"Then.. What the hell hit me?", Katsuki asks outloud as he faces his opponent again. Red eyes widen with shock before narrowing in anger, "TWO fucking yo yos?!"
Izuku maneuvers a backup piece to whip between his legs and around his arms like a damned expert. "You can never be too careful, Kacchan.", the bastard has the nerve to wear a prideful grin for coming prepared.
"Die, nerd!", Kacchan charges at Izuku in a fit of rage. The greenette swings his yo yo back around, attempting to knock the blonde off course. Instead, Kacchan ducks under the string completely and comes back up with a right hook.
Unable to counter the punch with the axel or his occupied hand, Izuku uses his second arm to pull the string around Katsuki's leg. Ducking under the right hook, the greenette yanks and trips the blonde.
As he falls, Katsuki yells in protest before holding his hands out for impact, only to let off a round of explosions to bounce himself back. Izuku turns back around in surprise, not expecting an extended leg to kick him in the chest. Katsuki fires off an explosion on just one hand to pivot himself, spinning to land another hit. Izuku swings his yo yo up in an attempt to land his own attack.
Both boys are sent reeling back in pain. Izuku shrugs off the hit before bending the yo yo to his will again. Kacchan rushes head on, attempting to power through another hit. Izuku mixes up his attack then, throwing in a jab that pops a vessel in the blonde's nose.
Kacchan steps back, blood pooling from a nostril. He brings a hand to it, fingers tapping the liquid and pulling away so he can see it for himself. The blonde bares his teeth, anger evident across his face.
"Midoriya sure is amazing.", Tsuyu ribbits as she watches the fight from the viewing room. It's hard to read her features on such an emotionless face, but the finger poised on her lip shows interest.
Yaoyorozu nods in agreement with the frog girl, "For him to be capable of going toe to toe with the highest scorer in the Entrance Exam, while fighting quirkless no less, it shows great skill.."
"Speak for yourselves! You didn't see what he did to me in the locker room!", Mineta exclaims. That particular outburst earns a curious glance from All Might as a bead of sweat rolls down his forehead. However, every girl in the room also shares the same knowing smirk.
Amidst the ongoing fight, Izuku leans under an explosion in order to avoid getting burnt. Unfortunately, the greenette went too far and loses his balance, falling flat on his back. Kacchan grins when he sees the golden opportunity, slapping a hand down while letting off another blast.
Izuku rolls out of the way, avoiding the explosion entirely. A seared spot is left where his head used to be, making the boy shudder. In order to gain his distance back, Izuku sweeps the yo yo in another arc, albeit much shorter with his pinky holding back the string. Kacchan leans away to dodge it, but doesn't expect that pinky to lift up and add some length to the string. The sneaky move earns a successful hit on the blonde's temple, as well as a few curse words.
Using this as an opportunity to skip backwards, Izuku reels the yo yo back in. With a few feet between them, the fight is back to where it started. Katsuki finishes spouting slurred swears and charges again. Izuku whips the yo yo up to defend himself, not expecting an explosion to destroy it completely.
The blast is powerful enough to knock Izuku off his feet and create another smokescreen. The greenette tries scrambling to his feet, frantically patting at the pockets on his belt for a useful item to equip. Suddenly, the blonde comes barreling through the smoke at full force like a horror movie jump scare.
Throwing the first thing he gets handful of, Izuku jumps back in a desperate attempt to flee. Luckily for him, the greenette threw a bunch of smoke pellets that burst on impact with another explosion. The entire hallway is engulfed in a thick layer of black fog.
Wasting no time, Izuku turns heel and runs away.
Meanwhile, Iida loiters by the fake nuke he has to guard. "Bakugo has a natural tendency towards troublemaking it seems, so this exercise should be perfectly suited to him. ME on the other hand.. I suppose I must ALSO assume the role of a villain. Though it may bring shame to the Iida family name, this training will help me become a better man! I must commit!", the armored hero in training chops his arms like he's fighting with himself.
Ending his inner conflict, Iida strikes a sinister pose. "To become a hero, I must cloak myself in darkness!", his legs spread as he loses traction on the floor, "I am.. THE ULTIMATE EVIL--", the boy yelps when he accidentally does a split.
It's too much for Hagakure to handle, she ends up bursting out in a fit of giggling. The invisible girl had been in the room the entire time, attempting to stealthily sneak by and claim the objective. However, Iida is taking the exercise so seriously that it's almost comical, and his accidental slip up only sealed the deal in her laughter.
Upon hearing somebody else in the room that isn't his teammate, Iida activates the thrusters in his calf engines, speeding by and grabbing the nuke to run away with. Hagakure lets out a startled gasp when the boy passes by in a blur, vanishing from the room with her goal.
"Dang it!", she stomps her feet in a short pout before activating the communicator in her ear, "Iida figured out that I was trying to touch the objective and ran off with it!", she relays to her partner.
Izuku peers around the corner of the hallway he's in, checking to see if Kacchan is anywhere close to hear him. Once the greenette is certain that the blonde is too far to find him currently, he brings a finger to his own earpiece. "I lost sight of Kacchan, but you shouldn't have a problem with going after Iida anyways.", Izuku whispers in response.
"Okay! I'll try!", Hagakure says back before the line closes.
Izuku lowers his hand slowly, trying not to make any sudden movements that may cause the ruffling of his clothes. He then peers around the corner again, checking to see if Kacchan managed to catch up.
"YOU CAN'T HIDE FROM ME, FUCKER!", flames lick the kevlar on Izuku's chest as he's blasted into the wall behind him. The explosive blonde stands in the clearing, his other hand poised for a secondary explosion.
"Guess not..", Izuku groans in pain as he clutches what'll most likely leave a scar. "So, shall we resume fighting then?", it's meant to be a joke rather than a way to egg Katsuki on. However, it should have been obvious that the blonde would take it to heart.
"Dammit! Stop mocking me!", Katsuki winds up another explosion that Izuku raises his arms in order to block. However, the blonde whips his hand behind him instead, using the detonation as a way to rocket over his enemy's head. Flying over Izuku and behind him, Katsuki lets off another explosion that consumes the greenette's back.
Izuku cries out in pain, falling forward in momentary shock. Before he can hit the ground though, Kacchan's rough hand grabs Izuku's wrist and pivots him back around. Already disoriented, the greenette has no way to break free from getting spun around by the blonde as if they were a bottlerocket. Kacchan uses his quirk as a repulsor and uses the momentum to flip Izuku over for a bodyslam.
"Use your damned quirk!", Katsuki barks like a rabid dog with foam coming out of its mouth, "I wanna crush you at your strongest! No half assed shit!"
Izuku moans from his position on the floor, just the involuntary twitch of his leg is enough to make him lay back down in agony. "Midoriya, I've tricked Iida into putting himself into a dead end!", at least Hagakure's voice in the earpiece gives him some hope that the fight will soon be over.
The invisible girl tries her best to stand between Iida and the escape route while also trying to remain inconspicuous. The speedster continues guarding the bomb, his eyes frantically searching for where he thinks she may be standing. One wrong move from either side can decide the fate of the battle trial.
Katsuki hefts the heavy gauntlet that's shaped like a grenade onto his other arm like he's setting up a canon shot. "Oi.. Dekiru.. Wanna hear something interesting about my quirk?", the blonde grins from ear to ear. An unnerved Izuku tries to stand up, groaning in response. "The sweat glands in my palms secrete something like nitroglycerin. That's how I make my explosions.", the explanation doesn't completely get through to the dazed greenette though.
From the monitor room though, All Might takes notice of why the blonde is even bothering to describe the ability. It's hard to see without enhanced vision on a small grainy monitor, but Katsuki has his finger around a pin that's attached to the grenade. "Don't tell me..", the hero activates the speaker system, "Bakugo. Stop it now, kid!"
Kacchan is either too exhilarated by the prospect of the fight to notice All Might's voice or he's flat out ignoring it. "Assuming they honored my design requests, this gauntlet's been storing that fluid..", only now does Izuku and the other students realize why All Might tried interfering.
Hagakure sees Iida lose his concentration when All Might's voice booms over the speakers. In that split second window of opportunity, the invisible girl rushes forward with her arm outstretched to touch the objective.
Izuku's eyes widen as his friend begins pulling back the pin. There's not enough room to avoid getting caught inside the blast radius, even if a direct hit wouldn't kill him, it'll be enough to put him out of commission despite Recovery Girl's healing quirk. There's only one option that Kacchan is giving the green haired boy; there's only one way to survive. The monstrous villain quirk, the one that's still unreliable and uncontrollable.. he has to try to use it.
Izuku raises his hand towards his mouth, prepared to bite down on his own thumb.
Hagakure passes Iida, her hand mere centimeters from touching the objective.
Katsuki pulls the pin off his gauntlet.
Hagakure claims the victory, "IT'S OVER! THE HERO TEAM WINS!", All Might desperately tries to stop the ensuing explosion. However.. it's too late.
The camera feed goes out on five separate monitors, each one getting caught inside the blast. The room quakes with the resounding boom of a distant explosion. The students stand still with paled faces, none of them knowing what to say or do. Even All Might is paralyzed for a moment.
"T- The drone camera!", All Might remembers a backup recording device that Nezu left for availability. The hero quickly fires it up from the control panel, operating the machine to fly to the disaster side and display the aftermath on a backup feed.
Nobody knows what to expect. However, it isn't Katsuki Bakugo sobbing over the mangled corpse of Izuku Midoriya. A few students puke at the ghastly sight, others needing to turn away before they do too. Jirou feels the warm tears rolling down her cheeks, but feels too cold to register them.
Missing limbs and showing skeletal parts, is the burned remains of Izuku Midoriya.
All Might comes bolting into the nurse's office, carrying the limp body of a student. "Chiyo! Help!", the hero gently sets the green haired boy on the nearest gurney. All Might's smile has dwindled under the severity of the situation, beads of sweat rolling down his face.
"My word.. Toshinori, what have you brought me?", Recovery Girl holds her shaking hands over the corpse, almost too afraid to touch it. In all her years of providing medical care, there had never been a situation quite like this, not once did she ever lose a patient.
"H- He.. Isn't there anything you can do?", All Might runs a hand through his hair. Fingernails unfurl the blonde locks as he scrapes them against his scalp anxiously.
Third degree burns leave the boy's flesh looking almost unrecognizable, his hair completely singed to a crisp. Exposed bones protrude from what remains of an arm and his shattered rib cage. The poor kid lost an entire leg and part of his shoulder; if he were to somehow miraculously survive this, he would never do hero work ever again.
"If I use my quirk to its fullest, the chances of killing him will only increase. On the other hand, nothing else is capable of fixing these injuries fast enough..", the old heroine trembles as she shares the details of such a dilemma with what's considered to be Japan's greatest hero. Between the two of them, neither person in this room is capable of saving the dying boy.. it makes her feel so pathetic.
Suddenly, the two of them are startled by what sounds like a hissing noise. Briefly, Recovery Girl assumes that the boy is trying to breathe through his condition. However, All Might notices the source of noise first; a gradual stream of mist radiates from the damaged body. Both heroes watch with curious concern.
All Might's eyes narrow at the familiar sight of steam secreting from a person. This boy certainly brings a lot of problematic questions. Not many people know this about the hero's quirk, but a side effect of its power running thin is the same kind of fog. Right now though, he only hopes that the mist from this particular quirk is a result of something else... for Midoriya's sake.
Recovery Girl fans the steam away, yelping when it gives a light burn on her skin, like placing a hand over a burning oven. Luckily, it wasn't in vain, the opening allows them to briefly see what the body currently looks like behind the smokescreen. Astonishingly, some regrown muscle fiber has started coating the damaged body.
"He's.. healing?", All Might feels his mouth become dry. The hero is forced to swallow his own spit to fix the issue. "Is this a secondary aspect of his quirk or another one entirely?", he whispers to himself.
"Toshinori.", Recovery Girl's voice snaps All Might out of his cogitation. "Leave the boy to me and Nezu. You've still got the rest of Class 1-A to look after. Go.", her sternness leaves no room for argument. It's just like getting an order from your mother or grandmother, he has no choice but to obey.
Reluctantly, All Might heads for the exit. The hero looks over his shoulder the entire time, continuously staring at the healing student. "Please, notify me if there's any change in his condition.", he pauses at the doorway.
"Of course.", Recovery Girl gives the blonde a single nod that simultaneously assures him & ushers him out. All Might slowly faces away then, content with her response. She watches as he vanishes in a blur of red before turning her gaze back to the patient in critical condition.
Elsewhere, Katsuki Bakugo is no better state of body or mind. The blonde had become incredibly pale after All Might whisked his friend away. Ever since, it's like fading in and out of sleep, some shitty nightmare the only thing that you comprehend. Aizawa wrapped a shock blanket around Katsuki's shoulders at some point, also leaving behind a cup of tea to drink. Katsuki never reached for it once.
Aizawa stares at his traumatized student through the classroom window of a hallway. This whole thing had turned into a real shit show that he can only blame himself for. This was All Might's first time teaching, Aizawa should have been there just in case things went wrong.. and they did.
Letting out a frustrated sigh, Aizawa rubs his temple in aggravation. Katsuki hasn't said a word since the accident; it's almost like he died too. The school should be calling both the boy's parents right now, but that damned rat of a principal won't allow it for some unGodly reason.
As if things couldn't get any more frustrating, All Might comes sliding to a halt in the same hallway. "Aizawa! How are things with Young Bakugo?", the hero peers through the window to evaluate the condition of the student.
"Not good..", the teacher slouches as his somber mood increases. "How's Midoriya?", he asks instead. Aizawa isn't entirely sure he wants that answer, he's almost positive that it can't be a good one.
"He's.. There's a chance that he'll pull through.", All Might seems to notice Aizawa's disposition since he thinks it's a good idea to try and comfort the man by placing a heavy hand over the fellow hero's shoulder. When Aizawa flashes the blonde a glare, All Might pulls the hand away almost instantaneously.
"I had to seperate Bakugo from his own classmates; they all choose to treat him like a villain now. It isn't fair for those kids to direct their blame on him like that.. Bakugo isn't some culprit to get accused, he's just as much as a victim.", Aizawa explains the situation as he faces 1-A's door. "The children tend to value your opinion. I'd suggest telling them what I just told you.", he doesn't need to transfix All Might with a stare to convey the message properly.
"R- Right.. But.. There WILL be consequences for Bakugo's actions.", All Might reminds the underground hero.
"Of course.", Aizawa faces the window to stare at his downtrodden student again, "It won't be as easy as letting him off with a warning.. Especially when the punishment is left up to Nezu."
All Might solemnly nods in consensus before entering the classroom. Even if this is the first day teaching these children, he can tell that the atmosphere is unusually sullen. Just this morning, the room had been full of rambunctious kids, now they're all as quiet as mice. Some of them sit up from their slouches when the teacher walks in.
"How's Midoriya?", Jirou is the first to ask the question that was to be expected. Tsuyu mimics her friend like a parrot, or perhaps a broken record by the time that Ashido & Tokoyami say it.
"Is he going to be okay?", Hagakure adds to the question with the same tone of concern.
"He's.. Recovery Girl is going to do her best. I'm afraid I can't tell you much more than that. I'm sorry.", All Might hangs his head with the rest of the class. Nobody knows what to say or do still, things had really taken a turn for the worst.
"What about Bakugo?", All Might wasn't expecting anybody to ask that particular question. Glancing up from the floor, he sees Kirishima leaning forward in his seat. "Aizawa took him away without a single word and.. Bakugo looked so lifeless, like HE was the one that got caught in an explosion.", All Might catches the boy's eyes, seeing genuine care in them.
The hero remembers what his co-worker said about Bakugo being a victim too. The class had ridiculed their own member for a mistake, albeit a BIG mistake, but still an accident nonetheless. Yet, here is this young man who manages to see that bigger picture with a heart of gold to boot. Perhaps there would be more to discuss with Nezu at a later date, when things with Midoriya get resolved.
"Bakugo is being tended to as well. I'm not certain of his position for the future, but our main priority is his mental health as of this moment.", All Might tries assuring the redhead.
"That psycho nearly killed his own classmate!", Kaminari interjects with great disdain.
"He should be expelled!", Iida adjusts his glasses.
All Might clears his throat, signaling for the students to stop shouting over each other. "Bakugo made a mistake. He WILL be punished for the choices that he made. HOWEVER, it's still a MISTAKE, and as such, none of you should be holding it against him. Bakugo is still your ally. Remember that.", he does his best to relay Aizawa's message from earlier.
The students that were still holding a grudge become deflated at that, nodding in understanding. Iida gives a small bow, "I apologize. I should have realized."
"When will we be able to visit them?", Jirou asks once everybody settles down.
"As soon as they feel up to it, I'm sure they will let us know.", All Might nervously scratches his head while looking away. So far, he hasn't had a proper answer for any of their questions, and these are supposed to be the easy ones. All Might had never really been good with the press or crowd control, he usually fled the scene as soon as fans arrived to avoid getting flooded by reporters and questions. Looks like that came back to bite the poor hero right on the cape.
Meanwhile, Izuku begins to stir in his sleep. The wounds are completely healed in a matter of minutes; the miracle of his recovery almost instantaneous. However, he barely moves a centimeter before crying out in pain. While the injuries are gone, the sore feeling of being bombarded remains.
"Try not to strain yourself, dearie.", Recovery Girl rushes to the bedside as soon as she's aware of her patient waking up. Although she contemplated it several times, she hadn't used her quirk on him once. The side effects of whatever healing factor the greenette has are left to be determined, whether it's drowsiness like hers or something else. "How do you feel?", is what she chooses to ask in order to figure that out.
"Like I got hit by a bus.. then a train.. and a truck? I dunno..", Izuku groans as he shifts forward. The attempt to move fails completely, he plops back down on the gurney, completely worn out if his heavy breathing is anything to go by. "What happened?", he asks once he realizes he isn't going anywhere in his current condition.
Recovery Girl sighs as she opens a drawer, "Let's start with the.. relatively 'good news'. You healed in the span of under thirty minutes, without the aid of my quirk."
Izuku's eyes widen, he tries to sit up only to fall back down while clutching his aching sides. "Ow, ow, ow..", he complains before huffing and asking, "How is that even possible?"
Recovery Girl finds the pack of gummies she's looking for in the drawer, the special treatment kind that contain vitamins and such to help with a full recovery. She then moves to a set of cabinets, searching for pain killers. "Whether it's apart of your transformation quirk or another entirely, you've got yourself a healing factor. The drawback must be some form of what doctors call phantom pain.", she explains.
Izuku twiddles his fingers, staring at his hand. "Is.. Is that why my arm feels so numb?", he asks, "M- My leg too. It's almost like.."
"You regrew your lost limbs.", Recovery Girl stops to look over shoulder so she can see the boy's expression. The greenette swallows whatever pit is in his throat, slowly taking it in like a hard pill to swallow.
"I.. H- How did I get so hurt?", he returns her stare. There's nothing but sincere confusion in his eyes, the orbs seem to search her own for some kind of answer.
"Your rowdy friend, Bakugo.", Recovery Girl says it like that's enough of a simplification. She watches as Izuku's face runs through a series of expressions, just like a human slot machine. Eventually, it lands on something stoic, he must not be entirely sure how to come to terms with it. "Here.. Have some of these. It'll ease the pain.", she hands him two pills from the bottle of medicine to take.
"I remember now.. Where is he?", Izuku pops the pills into his mouth with a dry swallow.
Recovery Girl grabs a bottled water from her mini fridge so he can wash it down after the fact he already took the pills. "He's in Aizawa's care for the time being.", she informs him as he chugs the drink.
Izuku's cheeks puff up, almost like he's about to spit the water out, but he ends up gulping it down instead. "Please, don't punish him too harshly! He definitely didn't mean to hurt me! And I'm fine now anyways--", his defensive outburst gets interrupted by a whack on his head from the nurse's cane.
"You ruffian! Don't be silly!", she shouts over him before composing herself with a heavy exhale, "While it's fortunate that you're alive and well, things could have turned out MUCH more severe. You could have DIED, Midoriya. What then?"
Izuku stops rubbing his head in order to prop himself up on one elbow, gritting his teeth with a hiss as he fights the pain. "But I DIDN'T die! So it's okay!", he protests.
Recovery Girl shakes her head, "You really don't understand how critical of a condition you were in.". She then steps towards the door, "Although, it isn't up to me what happens after the circumstances, I'm just here to clean up the mess. What happens now with yourself and Bakugo, that's up to the principal to decide."
That's when the door swings open, allowing the crossbreed of a bear and mouse to enter. "It's a pleasure to see you again, Midoriya. I just wish it were under better circumstances.", the animorph waves in greeting. "I'm just glad to see you awake with no disastrous injuries to leave a lasting mark. I suppose it's safe to assume this is how you returned from your captivity unscathed.", the principal hums to himself as he closes the door.
Izuku chooses to ignore all that, "What's gonna happen to Kacchan?", he asks in a voice stricken with worry.
Nezu brings a paw to his chin, stroking the white fur there like it's a beard. "You must mean Young Bakugo. Well, in a ordinary situation, I would be forced to expel him while making a note of this incident to be placed on his record. In such a case, he would never be allowed into any other hero school ever again.", his cheerful tone is almost unnerving.
"No! Don't do that! Please!", Izuku shouts as he tries to push himself upwards from the elbow that he was propped on. Failing miserably, he falls back down in a pathetic display of weakness. "Please..", he begs.
Nezu and Recovery Girl share a glance, both of them communicating with just a twinkle of the eyes. "Midoriya, I hope you know that there MUST be some consequences for Bakugo's actions. The faculty, myself included, can't afford to ignore something such as this.", the principal tries to speak more soothingly this time.
"I'm fine now, I just need a little rest and I'll be fine.", Izuku closes his eyes as if that'll make all the problems go away.
Nezu hums as he ponders the situation. "What would you suggest then, Midoriya?", he asks.
"I.. I don't know?", his eyes snap open as he desperately tries to think of a solution. "Maybe some kind of counseling like anger management? Or therapy?", Izuku suggests the first thing that comes to mind.
Nezu nods in consideration, "That's a start.", his head transitions to a shake then, "But it's not enough. If he isn't to be expelled, then he must at least be suspended."
Izuku slouches, accepting the fate of his friend. "H- How long?", he asks.
"A month at the least.", Nezu waves it off like the problem has been solved.
However, Izuku begins shaking his head. Taking a gamble, he tries to bargain with the mouse creature. "Make it a week.", he says despite not having any say in the matter.
Nezu gives the boy a small smile, agreeing to continue negotiating at the very least. "Two weeks. Take it or leave it.", he offers.
"Deal.", Izuku slumps over with a prematurely defeated sigh. At the very least, he lessened the blow of his friend's punishment, and Kacchan will hopefully appreciate that.
"I want to bring in All Might to have a word with you now.", Nezu's next words reignite Izuku's attentiveness. "Your quirk is rather concerning to us, as you would imagine, but for reasons other than the norm.", the principal gets nudged by Recovery Girl before adding, "Only if you feel up to it though. If you still need some time to rest, we can wait."
"O- Okay. I'm feeling well enough to speak with him.", Izuku slowly eases himself backwards so he can lean against the pillow as a comfortable brace.
Meanwhile, All Might is in the middle of trying to tame the collection of unruly students. They fire off more questions than the paparazzi, each of them shouting over the other with a more boisterous voice. The hero is left pleading for them to calm down, only to be tuned out by the yelling.
Suddenly, there's a phenomenon equivalent to the parting of the red sea. A silence overtakes the room when Aizawa slides the door open; every kid turns stiff in their chairs. All Might shudders when the intimidating man fixes him with a glare. "Nezu is requesting you in the nurse's office.", Aizawa then takes his place behind the teacher's desk.
"A- Ah! Right! See you later, class!", All Might wastes no time in bolting out the door.
On his way there though, the hero briefly glances at the room that Bakugo is in. The poor kid is still so downcast with that same sullen expression. The blanket over his shoulders slipped off even though he never moved a muscle, the tea in front of him losing its hot steam after turning cold.
This day has already had enough somberness. In an attempt to lighten the mood, he makes an announcement of his arrival while striking an iconic pose. "I AM HERE!", he shouts.
"All Might. Please, have a seat. Ask Young Midoriya what you've been wishing to discuss.", Nezu gestures to the stool that's beside the gurney as Recovery Girl closes the door.
Instantly taking the hint, he lets himself turn serious, dropping the cheerful act. The atmosphere would have been extremely tense had it not been for how comically large the hero is when trying to sit on the stool. Izuku tries to hold in a laugh, his lips quivering with the urge to smile.
"Midoriya. I want to know about your time with the villains that took you.", but THAT makes it easy for him to fall into a serious attitude as well.
"I still can't remember anything.", Izuku almost sounds like he's on autopilot at this point. Regardless of if it's an automated response or not though, it's true.
All Might shares a look with Nezu, the principal giving a small nod. Recovery Girl looks like she understands what's happening despite being left out of the loop. The muscular blonde faces Izuku again, breathing in and breathing out in some sort of preparation.
"What about All For One?", an ominous sense of dread floods the room as soon as All Might utters the sentence. The temperature feels like it just dropped hundreds of degrees, but Izuku still sweats under the suffocating terror that's lingering there. He'd turned so pale now that Recovery Girl takes a step forward, sensing that he might pass out.
Choking on his own words, Izuku shakes his aching head. "If.. If I try to think of anything from my time there, I get a really bad migraine..", he clutches his forehead with a flinch of pain. To the greenette, it feels like somebody just swung a baseball bat over his head, the wood shattering on impact due to blunt force.
Recovery Girl wastes no time in grabbing him a set of asprin to take. This time, Izuku swallows it with a sip of water, gasping for air afterwards like he just came up from the ocean.
"Are you feeling well enough to continue?", All Might delicately asks the question.
"Toshinori!", Recovery Girl scolds him while fixing the hero with a death glare.
"I'm fine.. I'll be fine.", Izuku interrupts the two. If he can be of any help to the symbol of peace, he doesn't want to pass it up.
All Might gives another look at Nezu, checking for permission again. When the principal nods his head, the blonde releases a sigh. "The man I asked you about.. he has the ability to take people's quirks.", this gains an audible gasp from Izuku, "But he can GIVE quirks as well."
Izuku shakes his head in disbelief, "But--", he suddenly has to fight the urge to vomit. Leaning over the gurney, he dry heaves a few times, before puking into the nearby garbage can.
Recovery Girl fixes the boy with a sympathetic look, turning to give All Might and Nezu a pleading one to stop. However, the principal is already speaking before she gets the chance, "We believe he was the TRUE villain to take you. He then gave you some of his quirks for reasons unknown, if your self preservation quirk is anything to go off of."
Izuku barfs again, panting over the waste basket. "I can't believe this..", he gags with a false alarm before laying back down.
"We understand that it's a lot to take in..", Nezu continues, "Which is why we want you to work with Aizawa some more in order to discover if there are any other quirks that you may not be knowledgeable of." The principal then uses what one might consider a form of bribery, "Think of it as a way to return the favor for us giving Bakugo leniency in terms of his punishment."
Izuku nods in agreement, "Yeah.. That's probably for the best."
All Might places a consoling hand on the student's shoulder, "I have something you might like to hear now that we've got all that over with."
Izuku perks a brow in interest, his curiosity getting the better of him.
"Your classmates wish to check on you. All of them are very concerned for your well being. Are you feeling well enough to see them or would you like me to give them a message instead?", the hero's smile grows when he sees the boy's face light up.
"I- I'd love to see them and let them know that I'm okay!", he exclaims before breaking into a fit of coughs, "Okay, maybe send one in at a time though."
All Might nods in understanding before he stands up, "Then off I go!"
"I should probably get back to my office as well.", Nezu chimes in, "Farewell, Midoriya. Adios, Chiyo."
The rodent and hero exit, leaving the nurse and her patient. "Your real name is Chiyo?", Izuku asks. The greenette receives a clonk on the head for that.
"You will address your elder properly! It's 'Recovery Girl'!", she scolds him.
"S- Sorry!", Izuku yelps before clamping both his hands over his mouth to keep himself from saying anything else that might earn a whack from the nurse's cane.
Recovery Girl sighs before heading for the door as well. "I suppose I'll give you some privacy when your friends come. I'll be just right outside the room if you need anything.", she says.
"Ah, thanks.", Izuku nods despite her head facing the other direction. Once she's gone, he allows himself to relax what had been so tense, his body falling into a mix of bliss and exhaustion.
Not too long after that, Jirou lightly knocks on the doorway to announce her arrival. "Midoriya? Are you feeling okay?", she hesitantly asks with a shy voice.
"Jirou!?", Izuku attempts to cover his bare chest with his arms. Once the girl realizes that he's shirtless, she lets out an 'eep' and turns away. The girl buries her face into the scarf around her neck, hiding the heavy blush that came from seeing his abs.
"P- Put something on!", she stutters while closing her eyes for extra measure.
"S- Sorry.. I'm dressed now.", he stammers too with an equally red face. "I should have known better, I just didn't expect you or any other girl to be the first to visit..", he mutters afterwards.
"Idiot.", she huffs. Once the two recover from the initially awkward moment, she gives the boy a small smile. "At least you're healed now. Which.. Wow, not even a single scratch..", she then begins to realize that he's practically a living miracle.
"Uh.. Y- Yeah..", Izuku forces a chuckle, "It looks like I still get the chance to become a hero." He's uncertain of whether he should tell her about his personal regeneration quirk or lie that it was done by Recovery Girl. Luckily, Jirou doesn't seem to question it too much. Instead, she's.. thrusting the scarf he gave her back into his arms?
"Then you'll need this.", Jirou bows her head like she's offering a knight his sword. Izuku stares at it with nothing but confusion, but he doesn't need to ask anything since she isn't finished talking. "The scarf is part of your fighting style. You didn't have it and you nearly died, because of ME--", she's starting to cry now.
"Hey, hey, hey.. Jirou, it wasn't your fault for what happened.", Izuku places his hands over hers on the scarf. "With or without this, the same thing would have happened. Besides, I gave you the scarf as a gift and I couldn't possibly take it back from you.", he tries to push it back towards her.
Jirou viciously shakes her head in denial, shoving the scarf back into his chest. "You suicidal blockhead!", it's not the nickname that she was wishing to give him. "I thought you died! You were--", she starts to choke on her words in between the start of sobs.
"Jirou.", Izuku does his best to sound as stern as the teachers in order to make her stop. He then firmly grips her arm, bringing her hand to his chest so she can feel his heartbeat. "It's still beating.", he tells her, "If that's not enough proof, then you can listen to it too."
The girl gasps, her tears already drying on their own. Even so, she plugs her jacks in just to be sure, desperate to hear that familiar war drum of a beating heart. Except, it isn't a tune full of rage that plays in her ears. The peaceful melody that resides within the green haired boy is a stark contrast to the original song she heard. The current tune is almost enough to make her swoon.
Ripping the cords free and prying her hand away, another blush covers her face. "Okay! If you're fine, then whatever!", she pulls away while trying to play off the moment to the best of her abilities. Every time the two interact, it leaves her feeling flustered. "I guess I should get back to class now.", she comes up with the first excuse she can muster.
Izuku stares at her in bewilderment for a moment, before a small smile covers his face. "Jirou?", he calls out to her just as she reaches the doorway.
The girl pauses, gazing over her shoulder at the boy in the hospital bed, "Hm?"
"The scarf suits you.. it makes you look c- cute..", he bashfully turns away to hide the blush that consumes his face.
Jirou raises her jacks, prepared to defend the honor of her own blush. However, Izuku can't see it at the angle he's facing, so she lowers them just as quickly. "Y- You're lucky that you're already in a hospital bed.", she says before rushing out the door.
Recovery Girl sighs as she watches the girl run away, "Young love.."
Wow, quite the strew of reactions to last chapter! If I learned anything from it.. it's that I should end on EVEN MORE cliffhangers!
In all seriousness though, thank you everybody, I'm so glad that you're enjoying the story so far!
Strolling down the sidewalk at a sedate pace is a lone boy. Without his childhood friend to share the pavement, his footsteps tend to echo through the desolate street.
Katsuki hadn't uttered a single word to Izuku ever since the incident. After a teacher brought the blonde back home, the young Bakugo hid away in his room like it's a personal bomb shelter.
Nezu downplayed the accident for the sake of both boys, but more so for Izuku. Since Inko isn't aware of her son's quirk(s), the principal lied in the official report. As far as documentation goes, all that happened was a small fainting spell from the heat of an explosion. This way, Katsuki Bakugo is still responsible for the possibility of a heftier accident due to his quirk and Izuku Midoriya receives the proper care.
However, Katsuki is still fully aware of the truth. While his parents and Inko may not understand the entirety of his guilt, he knows it's deserved. Regardless of if Izuku already forgave him or not, the blonde continues to blame himself.
So, Izuku trudges towards U.A with only the audio of his phone's playlist to keep him company. Music beats his eardrums as worn red shoes slap the cement in synchronization. Headphone wires sway back and forth as his body lurches from the dulled movements.
During a low point in the song, when the singer is just simply humming to the tune, Izuku raises a perturbed brow at what sounds like his last name being called. Shrugging it off as what must have been a misheard lyric, he continues onwards like nothing is unusual. Seconds later, he hears it again. Pausing the playlist and declining his pace, he begins to search around him for what might be a person calling out.
Suddenly, there's a sharp pain of something small jabbing his side. For a brief moment, Izuku thinks that he just got shanked by some mugger. However, he turns around to find a familiar face instead. "Jirou?!", he exclaims in shock.
Retracting one of her earjacks from his side, the girl crosses her arms in a pout. "I called your name, like, a thousand times!", she exaggerates before throwing her hands in the air with a huff.
"S- Sorry..", Izuku lets out a reserved chuckle as he dangles his headphones for her to see, "I couldn't really hear you over the song.."
At the mention of music, Jirou perks up with an eager smile and a twinkle in her eyes. "What were you listening to?", she asks with a raised brow and piqued curiosity.
"Oh, uh..", the greenette withdraws as he nervously scratches his head, "My dad travels a lot overseas, so he would occasionally bring back some American music.", he doesn't expect her to know any of the bands that he has saved.
"My parents go on tour in America sometimes, so I can see why you'd like some of their music.", but Jirou surprises him with an understanding nod, "Anything you like in particular?"
"Foo Fighters? Cage The Elephant?", Izuku names the first few that come to mind with a little apprehension that she might start teasing him over the choices.
"Wow, you're a pretty rockin' dude, eh?", she gives him a coy smile while playfully punching his arm. Even if it was meant to be a light hit, the boy will be left nursing the sore spot for the rest of the walk to school.
"I guess so.", Izuku laughs as he gives her a small shrug.
A gust of wind suddenly blows by, untucking a red scarf from under Jirou's school uniform blazer. Izuku's eyes widen in recognition of what's wrapped around her neck. "You're wearing it..", he mutters in disbelief.
Jirou's face heats up when he gives her a sly smirk after the initial shock. This is his opportunity to get some of how own teasing in, and they both know it. However, the threat of Jirou's earjacks hovering above her head is enough to make him drop it. "You didn't see a thing..", she mumbles while tucking the scarf back under her blazer.
Izuku is about to make some kind of witty remark, but his attention gets drawn to the strange crowd that's gathered outside of U.A's entry gates. Upon further inspection, he starts to realize that it's a bunch of paparazzi. Reporters with cameramen and microphones have surrounded the area like a swarm of bees.
"Stay behind me..", Izuku doesn't see the blush on Jirou's face darken as he protectively gets in front of her. He leads their charge into the crowd of media, prepared for the onslaught of questions.
Microphones instantly get shoved an inch from his face, cameras not too far apart. "What's it like to learn from All Might?!", one of the reporters practically screams at the top of their lungs. "Is All Might a good teacher?!", another tries yelling over the others as they each ask about All Might. Information must have been leaked about the hero being at the school for all this to happen so suddenly.
Cameras begin flashing as well, snapping pictures of the two students. "Please, we have to get to class or we'll be late.", Izuku tries speaking over them but it's like trying to be heard during a rock concert full of cheering fans. It's times like these that the greenette wishes Kacchan hadn't been suspended; the blonde would have plowed through them with relative ease.
Luckily, the horde's attention is drawn away by the barrier opening. Standing on the other side is Eraserhead, his eyes unblinking as he scans the crowd until landing on his students. "You two get inside. Now.", his glare is directed at them but the aura is felt by the reporters.
The two students scurry in with the help of their teacher as the media direct their questions to him instead. "We'd like an interview with All Might!", one shouts while another asks, "Why are you so sloppy looking?"
"All Might is off today.", Aizawa shoos them away with a few flaps of his hand before the barrier recloses. According to the commotion that still lingers behind the steel, the paparazzi wasn't satisfied with that answer.
"Thank you, Aizawa-Sensei.", Izuku heaves a breath of relief.
"You really saved us back there.", Jirou adds.
Aizawa hums in response as he walks with them towards the main facility. They fall into an awkward silence for a moment, both students being too shy to talk with their teacher chaperoning them. However, Aizawa eventually speaks up as he stares at Izuku from the corners of his eyes, "Midoriya. I was actually hoping to catch you before class starts."
"O- Oh?", Izuku stammers in surprise. "Wh- What for?", he nervously asks while tilting his head in curiosity. Even Jirou looks interested, watching them as inconspicuously as possible.
"I noticed you're lacking a support item, and I figured I'd save you the trouble of having to put in a request.", Aizawa then hands the greenette a rolled up cloth, "This was my original weapon. It's made from the same material as the new one, and I didn't think it would be of any use by collecting dust."
Izuku stares at the gift in his hands, carbon nanofiber winded down to a black material in comparison to Aizawa's white capture cloth. "Th- Thank you, Aizawa-Sensei.", Izuku has to use his sleeve to wipe away the tears that start leaking from his eyes.
"Don't mention it, kid.", Aizawa picks up the pace so neither student can see the satisfied smile he has.
"I guess you don't need your scarf back anymore.", Jirou smirks as she watches the boy play with the capture cloth. Izuku laughs as he whips it around his neck, mimicking Aizawa's style.
They reach the homeroom, their classmates quieting down as the door slides open. Aizawa shoots the two that came with him a glare, ushering them both to their seats. Once everyone has given the teacher their undivided attention, he clears his throat to begin speaking.
"This may be a sudden announcement, and inappropriate at the time of Bakugo's absence, but I'm afraid I can't wait any longer.", the class collectively sweatdrops in dreadful anticipation as to what Aizawa could possibly be talking about, "Your first homeroom activity will be picking a class representative and vice president."
"That's such a normal school thing!", some of the students collectively exclaim in relief.
Iida's hand shoots up like a shuttle launching into space, "SENSEI!", he yells excessively louder than necessary. "Why wait this long to make such an important decision?", he asks while adjusting his glasses to address the situation with a critical gaze.
Aizawa just stares back with a blank expression that could only be described as bored, "You were given ample time to befriend your classmates so the decision would come easier.", he lazily drawls a logical answer.
"I see. I apologize for questioning U.A's teaching methods.", Iida humbly bows.
"Yeah, just wake me up whenever you're all done.", Aizawa yawns as he zips himself up in a sleeping bag. Then, the teacher slumps over like a worn down hobo.
That's when havoc breaks loose, kids toppling over each other as if they're grabbing at the chance to lead. "Enough! I suggest we do this civilly by deciding through a poll. Whoever gets the most votes wins.", Yaoyorozu's voice shouting over everybody breaks it up.
"This is school! Not congress!", Ashido tries to protest but Iida and a few others are already gaining permission from Aizawa.
Everyone rips a piece of paper from their notebooks to make a ballad. Eventually all the votes are gathered and Aizawa is shaken from his slumber to announce the winners.
"Yaoyorozu takes class representative by four votes.", some students groan in disappointment over their loss while others clap in congratulations. "The position for vice president goes to Midoriya by three votes.", Aizawa finishes.
"Wha?! Why me?!", Izuku points to himself in surprise. Uraraka and Jirou pretend to not be paying attention, one twiddling their thumbs and the other whistling. Whoever the other vote was does a better job of hiding it.
"With that settled, it's time for a pop quiz.", Aizawa's second announcement causes a ripple effect of groaning and complaining throughout the classroom.
The rest of the homeroom time goes by uneventfully, especially without Kacchan to liven things up a little. The quiz pertained to more hero laws, opting for that lesson to be a mental one rather than physical.
When lunch rolls around, Izuku tries to flag down Uraraka when he sees her walking away from the usual eating spot. "Wait! Are you not gonna join us?", he asks.
"Oh, sorry, I forgot to tell you.", the brunette awkwardly edges away, "I'm gonna eat lunch with Tsuyu today. I wanted her to give me some tips about how to use my kicks better."
"Oh.. Okay then.", Izuku waves as she leaves. "Looks like it's just us.", he then turns around to see only Jirou sitting at the table, "Where's Kirishima?"
Jirou shrugs as if she's clueless, even though the redhead is in her peripheral vision giving a thumbs up. "I guess you'll have to make due with me.", she jokes.
"Guess so.", but it isn't as fun when the greenette plays along. It'd only been a short time of her teasing, and he'd already gotten used to it. She does notice he's looking a little more somber than usual today though.
"What's wrong then? You look upset. Don't tell me it's because Bakugo got suspended; he deserved it.", Jirou sets her silverware aside to address the poor puppy expression.
Izuku waves away the guess as if it were a physical speech bubble, "It's not that.", he then stares down at his food as if it had asked the question, "I'm just worried about whether or not I can really be our class rep."
"I think it'll suit you.", Jirou tries to assure him. "I mean.. It's why I voted for you, anyway..", she shyly looks away with a hint of embarrassment over the small confession.
Izuku runs a hand down his face in exasperation, "But I voted for YOU! I thought that you'd want to be class rep!"
"M- Me?!", Jirou stammers in her initial shock. "But.. Why?", she timidly asks.
Izuku pokes at his food with a fork, an outlet for his nerves as he tries to explain, "Well.. Ambition isn't all that matters, there's also suitability to account for. Since you're always sorta steering me in the right direction, I felt like you could be a good leader."
"Oi! You NEED it since you're such a suicidal blockhead!", Jirou tries covering up her blush with a false outburst of anger. Izuku makes calming gestures as he laughs, leaving Jirou to huff and puff.
Jirou flinches when the blaring sound of an alarm plays at full blast over the school's speakers, her quirk making the ringing louder than it actually is. Even Izuku jumps in place, the sudden noise enough to startle him. All around the cafeteria, students murmur in confusion over what might be the cause.
"Security Level Three has been broken. All students evacuate in an orderly fashion.", an automated robotic voice follows suite in order to guide the children.
"What the hell is security level three?!", Jirou shouts when everybody starts running out in a frenzied panic. Pretty soon, the masses have turned into a stampede that's trampling over one another as they all scramble for the exit.
"It means someone's infiltrated the building! Hurry up!", Iida suddenly comes along to direct any stragglers that may have been left behind.
The crowd carries them along like a strong current, the direction flowing hazardly left and right. "Oof! I'm going down!", Izuku reaches his hand out for help as he's dragged under the stampeding army. Jirou tries to save him but ends up getting thrashed in the opposite direction.
"Midoriya! Jirou!", Iida calls out to his lost classmates before finding himself pinned against a window. The teen gazes out, trying to catch a glimpse of what could have caused such chaos. Behind the lenses of his glasses, his eyes widen. "Everyone, calm down, it's only the press!", he tries shouting over the crowd but it's no use.
Suddenly, Yayorozu is whipped into the same precarious position. She struggles to push herself free, but she's effectively pinned. Then, the girl turns her head to see her fellow classmate. "Iida! What do we do?!", she hopes he'll have a solution to the current mess.
"Nobody can hear us over the others, but we need to assure them that all is well! It's just the media that's gotten beyond the barrier!", he quickly fills her in.
Nodding her head in understanding, Yayoyorozu finds the resolve to overcome the crisis with sheer determination. Using her quirk to create a megaphone, she tosses it over to Iida so he can be heard above everyone's panic.
"Everyone! Everything is fine!", he yells into the amplifying device, "It's only the press! This is U.A! Behave in a way that's befitting of this great institution!"
As the crowd becomes transfixed on Iida's voice, they start to slowly fall into relative grace. The shoving ceases as people allow space for others and start moving orderly.
After things were resolved there, everybody returned to their classrooms to wait on the teachers to return. U.A's staff is all too busy warding off the press to be present, so it's just the students for the time being.
Izuku pauses at the front of the room as he's last to enter. Clearing his throat, he shyly begins to make an announcement. "If I can have everybody's attention..", his meek voice doesn't make it past the first row. However, Jirou hears it with her enhanced sense of sound.
"Oi! Everyone listen up!", she shouts to help her friend get noticed. When the class quiets down to pay attention, she nods to Izuku for him to start speaking.
"Uh, thank you, Jirou..", he murmurs with a blush before raising his voice, "Everyone. I would like to resign from my position as vice president."
A collection of "HUH?!" and "EH?!" noises are his only response.
"I.. I believe that Iida is better suited for the position.", this makes them all dwindle down to listen again, "You all saw firsthand how he led everyone in that crisis. I think he's the better choice for this job.", his explanation goes uninterrupted much to his favor.
"Midoriya does have a point. Not even I would have known what to do without Iida's aid.", Yaoyorozu adds in agreement.
Iida has to remove his glasses so he can wipe away some tears with his blazer's sleeve. "I humbly accept this shift in management. Thank you, Midoriya and Yaoyorozu!", he bows so deeply in appreciation that his head nearly hits the floor.
While the children are busy yucking it up though, the teachers are currently standing together at the front gate. After the reporters left, they checked the barrier to see what may have caused it to malfunction. "No ordinary reporter could have caused this..", the principal runs his paw along the pile of dust that had been left behind.
Snipe, Present Mic, Midnight, and Eraserhead stand at the front; each of the pro heroes remains vigilant for any remaining danger. "Someone instigated this whole affair.", Nezu turns around to face them so they can see how serious he's taking the situation, "I believe the press was just a diversion for something greater."
Eraserhead stiffens at the implications of what Nezu just said. While the reporters could have easily allowed an evildoer to slip in, it also works as a distraction for a potential traitor. Whether that traitor is a teacher or student, is unknown. Aizawa narrows his eyes, scanning the crowd of fellow heroes, of comrades he thought he could trust.
"This was a declaration of war."
This was the last chapter to indulge in any fluff, cause next time.. we're starting the USJ 'arc'.
After the students hustled into class, their teacher unzipped himself from his sleeping bag in order to give the morning homeroom announcements. "Today's basic hero training will be supervised by myself, All Might, and another hero that will be kept disclosed until we're on site.", his opener is meant to be directed towards what may be a potential spy for the villains. After the incident at the school's front gate, Nezu and Aizawa plotted to increase their security while making it known to the possible mole.
Hanta Sero, a male student whose quirk allows him to shoot tape from his elbows raises his hand. Aizawa gives a curt nod that prompts the boy to speak. "Um.. What are we doing, exactly?", he hesitates while asking the question. It could just be the paranoia that comes with discovering a traitor in his midst, but Aizawa makes note of the student's nerves.
"We'll be preparing you for disaster relief, from fires to floods. In short.. It's Rescue Training.", Aizawa writes the kanji on the board behind him for anyone that may be too far in the back to hear.
"Rescue, huh? Sounds like another rough day..", Toru Hagakure complains about the hard work ahead of her. Aizawa feels his eye twitch, an involuntary sign of his annoyance from hearing her remark.
"Come on! This is what being a hero is all about! I'm pumped!", Eijiro Kirishima hardens his fists so he can clash them together. While he's showing some actual dedication towards his future career, the rambunctious noise is enough to grate at Aizawa's nerves.
"I'll be right at home in a flooded environment. Ribbit.", Tsuyu Asui speaks her thoughts outloud rather than having a silent musing.
Sensing that his class is about to only increase in its volume of outbursts, Aizawa clears his throat over them all. "Hey. I'm not done.", he's able to silence them all with a hard glare, even if it's without the use of his quirk to add further intimidation.
Once the rowdy students settle down, Aizawa pulls out a remote to activate the ceiling lockers. "It's up to each of you on whether or not you'll wear your costumes.", he begins explaining as the storage units descend, "You may find some of them are ill-suited to this sort of activity. As such, I'd suggest making changes where they apply."
Tenya Iida and Momo Yaoyorozu guide the students to the front in an orderly fashion this time, avoiding the usual stampede of overly energetic kids. It looks like a majority of them decided to wear their hero costumes, with the exception of Hagakure, Yaoyorozu, and Tokoyami choosing to use U.A's gym uniforms. Izuku Midoriya discards the cloak portion of his own outfit, going for a more practical style now.
"The training site is stationed in a place separate from the school, so we'll be going by bus.", Aizawa lets them in on the last detail before heading out the door.
"A field trip?! Awesome!", Denki Kaminari's reaction is his usually typical 'good time charlie' character trait. Mina Ashido chatters along with him, proving the logical ruse from their first day of school hadn't taught them anything. Aizawa is already considering his next threat of expulsion to be a legitimate one.
Iida does his best to keep the class in a straight line, but there's the occasional few that wander from it. Kaminari and Ashido are clearly straying from their class rep's rules on purpose, an attempt to troll the teen. Mineta and Sero are just idiots that don't pay attention.
"Line up according to your I.D numbers. Fill those seats in an orderly fashion.", Iida then begins blowing a whistle like some sort of drill sergeant. Where the class rep found the whistle or managed to make I.D badges for everyone to find mandatory seating is beyond Aizawa or anyone else.
Aizawa has to bury the bottom half of his mouth into his capture cloth to hide the faintest of smirks, since he knows it's all for nothing. "Darn! It's this type of bus!", Iida goes limp like a marionette that lost it's puppetmaster. The seating arrangement is opposite to the window rather than set in strips down either side.
As Izuku steps up the steps to board the bus, Aizawa sets a hand on his shoulder in order to hold him in place. "Midoriya. I'd like a word with you.", is all he says as he guides the boy a short distance from the others.
"Somebody's in trouble~.", Mineta sing songs in a taunting manner before Kirishima silences him with a hardened fist over the head. "Ooww..", the purple haired boy whines as he rubs the throbbing spheres.
"Y- You wanted to speak with me, s- sir?", Izuku fidgets in place as he nervously wrings his hands together. He tries to look his teacher in the eyes, but his gaze continuously darts away.
"Don't worry. You're not in trouble.", Aizawa assures the student first. Once he sees the greenette's body language become mildly relaxed, he continues. "We haven't had as many opportunities to train your quirk lately. So, I'm telling you it's time to try using it during this training.", Aizawa gets straight to the point since the last of the students have been loaded.
"Wh- What? But I can't c- control it yet!", Izuku's face drains of its color as he falls into an initial panic. "What if I hurt somebody? I-", he starts to stammer something out but its turned into muffled noises as Aizawa's capture cloth wraps around his mouth.
"What do you think all your prior hero training was for? When we get to the facility, you'll understand better. For now, I want you to mentally prepare yourself.", Aizawa tries to placate his student before unraveling the cloth. "Maybe.. Focus on restraining that power. Instead of releasing it all at once into something as massive at the entrance exam, you can try bottling some of it up.", he suggests.
"Y- Yes, Sensei.", Izuku reluctantly bows before heading off to take the last seat. He passes a waving Uraraka, giving a single small one in return.
"Kirishima, would you mind assisting me with something after class?", Yaoyorozu finishes asking the redhead a question just as the greenette arrives. Next to the ponytailed girl is Jirou and Todoroki.
"Sure!", Kirishima flashes her his trademark shark toothed grin as Izuku squeezes between him and Tsuyu Asui. Across from them, Jirou gives a small wave in greeting to her friend.
"I generally say what's on my mind, Midoriya.", the feline frog turns her head to face the fellow greenette.
"O- Oh? What is it, Asui?", he asks in curiosity.
"Call me Tsuyu.", she gives him a small smile to assure him that it's okay before continuing, "Are you and Jirou dating already?"
Izuku turns so stiff that one would think Todoroki froze him in place. Jirou's jack start twisting themselves involuntarily, the wires getting tangled. "Wh- What makes you say that?!", she squeaks while covering her face to hide a fierce blush.
Tsuyu just points at the scarf that's wrapped around her neck, "You're wearing what Midoriya used to have on all the time. I just assumed that wearing eachother's belongings is something that couples do."
Mineta leans forward in his seat, revealing that he's been eavesdropping from his own position. "But they only do that after they fuc-", he gets interrupted by another hard knock on the noggin, this time from Shoji.
"W- We're not dating, Tsuyu.", Izuku finally recovers from his stupor enough to correct her on the misunderstanding. Jirou's body goes slack when he says it, going unnoticed by everyone.. aside from Todoroki and Yaoyorozu who share some sort of look.
"Okay.", Tsuyu drops the topic. However, as if Izuku were a fish that escaped a hook in its mouth, she asks him another blunt question that may as well be a harpoon. "What about your quirk? I don't think I've ever seen you use it before.", she brings a curious finger to her chin.
"Uh.. Oh, um..", Izuku finds himself at a loss for words.
Fortunately for him, Kirishima comes in with a saving grace. "Trust me, Tsuyu, Midoriya's quirk is super cool! He just hasn't gotten the hang of it yet.", he gives his friend a thumbs up, "When he does though, it's gonna help em do wonders!"
"But.. What is it..?", Tsuyu's question goes unheard over Kirishima's continued raving.
"It's both powerful AND flashy, perfect for a pro!", Izuku's face turns a shade similar to Kirishima's hair over all the compliments that he's receiving. "Not like my hardening..", that enthusiasm suddenly drains like water from a bathtub as Kirishima uses his quirk to make his arm turn hard, "I'm good in a fight, I guess, but it's real boring and limited."
"I think it's pretty neat though!", Izuku returns his friend's compliments, "Your quirk is more than enough if you wanna go pro! Just think about heroes like Midnight, hers isn't something very flashy, but she still has popularity appeal."
"That's only because she has big boobs and a nice, plump, juicy-", Mineta gets knocked unconscious this time. Shoji does the courtesy of stuffing the short student in the overhead bin like a piece of luggage.
The rest of the ride carries on like this. Students have carefree discussions, some private and some in groups. However, they eventually reach their destination. "We're here. Look sharp.", Aizawa informs everybody before the bus lurches to a stop.
As soon as they step foot outside and catch a sight of the massive dome, the class lets out a collection of awe filled noises. It looks like the world's biggest football stadium got tripled in size, and that's just how it appears from the front.
The interior only increases the impressive spectacularity. From a staircase that looks out over the horizon, just ahead is there practically a plaza with a fountain at its center. Paths split off into different sections, with one looking very much like a waterpark and another appearing to be something worth rock climbing or ziplining from.
"Wow! Is this Universal Studios Japan?!", Hagakure exclaims in amazement.
"There's the flood zone, landslide zone, conflagration zone, and many more!", the class collectively turns at the sudden arrival of what looks like an astronaut. Some of the students recognize them as another pro hero, this one being a rescue hero in particular; Thirteen. "There's every disaster and accident you could ever imagine. I should know since I built this facility myself.", Thirteen chuckles with pride before spreading their arms in an extravagant presentation, "I call it The Unforeseen Simulation Joint!"
"It really is USJ!", Hagakure squeals with excitement.
Aizawa takes Thirteen by the arm, luring them away so they can speak privately for a moment. "Thirteen. Where's All Might? I thought he said that he would meet us here.", Aizawa spares a few glances to make sure the hero isn't plotting some sort of surprise entrance.
"About that.. It seems that he reached his limit during his morning commute. He's currently resting in the breakroom back at U.A.", Thirteen informs her co-worker of All Might's predicament.
"The height of stupidity..", Aizawa grumbles to himself in frustration. "We'll need to be on guard, you and I, this whole thing just got a lot more dangerous.", the two give eachother understanding nods before turning their attention back to the class.
"So be it. Let's get started.", Aizawa raises his voice now that they're off the topic of All Might's absence. Before he can continue though, Thirteen interrupts.
"Before we do, I have a few points to make.", the hero pops a cap off his pointer finger in order to form a pun, "As I'm sure many of you are aware, my quirk is called black hole." A dark vortex begins to seep through the opening in Thirteen's glove. "It can suck and tear anything apart.", the wisp begins to flicker like a flame searching for something to burn.
"And you've used it to save people from all sorts of disasters!", Ashido shouts with joy.
"Indeed.", Thirteen nods as the darkness begins to gain some control and becomes a proper miniaturized black hole. "However.. my power could also easily kill.", that sucks the joy right out of the class as they start to understand the severity of a quirk's potential, "I have no doubt that there are some among you with similar abilities."
Izuku flinches when he catches his reflection in Thirteen's visor. It's like the hero is specifically speaking to him. The greenette briefly glances at Aizawa, seeing that the other teacher is also staring at him. Whatever Thirteen has to say, this is what Aizawa meant by a better understanding being at the USJ.
"In our superpowered society, the use of quirks is heavily restricted and monitored. It may seem that this system is a stable one. However, we must never forget that it only takes one wrong move with an uncontrollable quirk for people to DIE.", Thirteen then turns their focus to the rest of the class, "During Aizawa's physical fitness test, you came to learn of your own hidden potential. Through All Might's Battle Training, you experienced the danger that your respective quirks can pose to others.", a few students think back to the disaster Bakugo left behind.
"This lesson will show you a new perspective! You will learn how to utilize your quirks to save lives! You've already learned how to work as a team during your game of Capture The Flag, now you have what it takes to put that cooperation to good use!", Thirteen begins to hype the group up like they're going to embark on some sort of quest. "Your powers aren't meant to inflict harm.", the hero's gaze then falls back to Izuku who's staring with watering eyes in return, "I hope you leave here with the understanding that you're meant to HELP people."
The class is given a moment to let that speech sink into their minds. Tokoyami, Yaoyorozu, Todoroki, Uraraka, Midoriya, and Kaminari look like they took it to heart the most. Jirou and Ashido appear to be pensive at most and it's hard to gage what sort of expression Hagakure has since she's invisible.
"That is all! Thank you for listening.", Thirteen bows like a performer that just finished their show.
"Bravo! Bravo!", Iida is the first to begin clapping, "As expected of U.A, every hero lesson has a major purpose!"
As the class continues to applaud Thirteen, Uraraka timidly approaches Aizawa. "Um.. S- Sensei?", her voice is just barely above a whisper as she murmurs to get the teacher's attention.
Just as Aizawa is about to turn away from his surveillance of the facility in order to address her, he notices something swirling at the base of the fountain below them all. The water stops pouring as a purple fog starts to increase around it. Then, a hand protrudes from it, acting as a portal to transport whatever is inside.
"Everyone, huddle up and don't move!", Aizawa shouts over his shoulder to the class as he places a hand on the capture gear wrapped around his neck. "Thirteen, protect the students!", he orders his partner while protectively placing himself in front of the group.
The hand that was once outstretched through the portal is now using it as a brace to pull its owner through. They aren't alone though, this particular person is leading some sort of charge. The purple mist must be a warp gate then, acting as a means to transport this coming army of villains.
"What the heck is that? More battle robots like during the entrance exam?", Kirishima cranes his neck to see what's down below.
"DON'T MOVE!", Aizawa repeats himself at a louder volume and a stronger sense of urgency. "Those are villains! REAL villains!", he warns them while pulling on specialized yellow goggles to conceal his eyes from the enemy.
The warp gate suddenly morphs into what appears to be the shape of a human body, yellow slits narrowing like eyes. "Eraserhead and Thirteen, I presume. According to the staff scheduale we received from the other day, All Might is supposed to be here..", the cloud of darkness hums as it surveys the group of aspiring heroes too.
Aizawa grips the capture cloth a little tighter, instantly picking up on the villain's phrasing. "Of course that whole incident was this scum's doing..", he recalls the front barrier being destroyed so reporters could get into U.A. Nezu was right about it all being a distraction.
"Where is he?", a villain covered in hands lurches forward, "We've come all this way and brought so many playmates. The least he could do is show up.. All Might.. The symbol of peace.. is he here?"
Izuku breaks his view on the villains, staring at the noticeable tremor in his hand. When he tries to raise it though, he realizes that his body won't respond. The best explanation would be that he'd been paralyzed, but the trembling of his body contradicts that. Izuku's green orbs meet the villain's red eyes, a hint of recognition in them. The hands covering his body.. the hands reaching out.. the one on his face; the one on HIS face.
Izuku's flesh turns paler than a corpse; his skin crawls like those decapitated hands are tickling it. The urge to scream is caught in his throat as he recalls the memories of that exact experience. A name, one that terrifies him more than the presence itself, echoes in Izuku's ears; Shigaraki.
"I wonder if some dead kids will bring All Might here?", Shigaraki speaks as a hulking creature stomps forward. The monster's black flesh is covered in deeply punctured scars. The oddest thing about its appearance is the brain bulging from its head and the drooling beak filled with razor sharp teeth.
"Villains?! No way!", Kaminari cries out in disbelief, "What villains would be dumb enough to attack a school full of heroes?"
"Sensei, aren't there intruder sensors?!", Iida turns towards Thirteen who also struck a defensive position.
"Yes, of course there are!", Thirteen shouts back.
"Are they only here, or also at the main building..?", Todoroki steps forward as he muses to himself, "Either way, if the sensors aren't working.. it has to be one of their quirks that's doing it."
Todoroki then raises his voice to interject, "This place is far from the campus and they picked a time when there would be few people here. Maybe they aren't as dumb as they seem. They must have an objective, because this is a well coordinated attack."
Aizawa shouts over them when he sees the villains are starting to move in, "Thirteen! Begin Evacuation! Try calling the school! One of these villains must be jamming the sensors. There's a good chance that one of their electric types is causing the interference.", he then shoots a quick glance at Kaminari, "Try using your quirk to signal for help, Kaminari!"
"G- Got it!", the electric blonde starts fiddling with the headphones on his head in an attempt to gain some sort of transmission signal.
Izuku watches helplessly as his mentor runs forward to engage the villains in a head on battle. Izuku wants to call out to him, scream, cry, reach forward, SOMETHING! But.. he's unable to move an inch. Shigaraki is here; a villain that's too familiar to be coincidence is HERE.
Aizawa leaps from the ledge of the staircase, flailing his capture cloth in a wide arc that sweeps either side of the villains. The aerial maneuver is countered by the ranged squad of villains, the group aiming their quirks. One has bullet chambers for fingers and another has lasso-like hair.
"The intel said we'd have to fight All Might and Thirteen. Who the hell is this?!", a villain with bull horns asks.
"Dunno, but he's coming at us all by himself, which only makes him a DEAD FOOL in my book!", the ranged squad's leader cackles as he activates his quirk to shoot the hero out of the sky. When there's nothing but a soft click transparent to an empty chamber, he looks down at his hands in confusion, "Huh? I can't shoot?"
Before two of the villains can recover from the sudden loss of their quirks, Eraserhead's capture cloth wraps around them both. Yanking on the bindings as he lands in a low crouch, Aizawa pulls the captured enemies into eachother right over his head.
"You dumbasses! He can cancel out your quirks just by looking at ya! That's Eraserhead!", one of the remaining villains of the ranged squad backs away once he recognizes the underground hero.
A villain made of cobblestone clenches four separate arms as he looms over Eraserhead, "He cancels quirks? Let's see if that trick works against us heteromorphic types!"
Aizawa answers the villain's question as he slams a fist into their nose, "No. It doesn't.", the hero smirks when he hears the satisfying crunch of a bone breaking. Using the force of his punch, Aizawa shoves the villain hard enough to throw them off balance. "My quirk only works against operative or transformative types.", he then uses his capture scarf to snag the villain's ankle, "However.."
Sensing an attack from behind, Aizawa ducks under a punch from another villain. "Statiscally, guys like you tend to shine in close quarters combat.", Aizawa uses his own bodyweight from leaning back as a means to trip the cobblestone villain. "Which is why I've got countermeasures for you.", he then turns the move into a backflip in order to swing the villain into the ground.
Shigaraki scratches at the itch to join in the fight, red eyes critically studying the hero as he fends off the attacks. "He's good at hand to hand.. Goggles hide his eyes so we don't know whose quirk he's canceling. Even a whole mob of us isn't slowing him down.. I really HATE pro heroes! Ordinary villains don't stand a chance against them!", Shigaraki seethes through gritted teeth as his anger rises.
Meanwhile, Iida grips Izuku by the wrist in an attempt to drag him towards the exit. "This is no time to stand still! Hurry up and evacuate!", he tries to forcefully pull the boy away from the action as the rest of the class follows Thirteen in a retreat.
Suddenly, the purple mist from earlier expands in front of the exit, blocking their escape route. "I won't allow that.", the darkness looms over them as yellow slits narrow in on the students.
"Dammit!", Aizawa curses to himself as he glances back at his class. During the split second it takes to blink, what might be one of the deadliest villains managed to warp away.
"Greetings. We are the League Of Villains.", the name of such an evil organization rattles through Izuku's ears like a set of chains. Memories of being confined to shackles, of being EXPERIMENTED on flood the boy's system. "Forgive our audacity, but we've come here to U.A High School, this bastion of heroism, to end the life of All Might.", the wavering wisps of purple remind Izuku of how they would close on his limbs, "We were under the impression that he would be here today, but it seems that his scheduale was revised?", the memories of his hands and feet being severed by the warp gate return all at once.
Todoroki looks like he's about to attack with Kirishima who already hardened himself with his quirk, but Thirteen stretches an arm out to stop them. "No! Both of you get back! Leave this to a pro!", the hero uncaps their finger once more so a black hole can counteract the villain's. However, a second purple warp gate opens just behind Thirteen, thus turning the hero's quirk against themself. The students look on in terror as their teacher gets shredded apart by their own black hole.
"Looks like a disaster relief hero can't measure up to even the most ordinary of heroes when it comes to a fight. Now you find yourself ripped apart by your own power.", the villain taunts his fallen enemy while expanding their form over the students once again. The kids are paralyzed with fear after watching Thirteen be killed right before their very eyes.
Izuku feels like a spectator in his own body, unable to move or utter a single syllable. He wants to fight back or at least cry out in agony, but his entire system is unresponsive as it continues recovering memories like a computer digging up its old hard drive. The name of the warping villain comes with the recollection; Kurogiri is one of the few responsible for his kidnapping and he's returned.
"My role remains unchanged.", Kurogiri suddenly covers the class like a blanket, "Be gone!"
The suffocating fog prevents the students from screaming as they're overtaken by the darkness. Disorienting movement feels like they've completely lost any sense of gravity while simultaneously falling; it's just like plummeting with your eyes closed.
"Writhe in torment!", Kurogiri continues to taunt them, "Until you breathe your last!"
Those words have been heard before, by Izuku Midoriya, who finally finds his voice for the chance to let out a tormented scream.
Okay, I lied, there was a little bit of fluff at the start. NOW though, we can get into some crazy USJ stuff.
Chapter 16: Assault On USJ
All across the USJ facility, warp gates appear slightly above the disaster simulation zones. The portals are a product of Kurogiri's quirk, tasked with scattering the heroes in training. Splitting the children into small groups to face larger factions of villains, this is Tomura Shigaraki's plan.
Set in the downpour zone, a group of students scramble to find shelter outside of the monsoon. “I can't use my quirk properly in this climate or I may slip!”, Iida complains to Kaminari and Ojiro.
“I can't use my quirk either, or I might end up frying us too!”, the electric blonde cries out when they get cut off by a collection of criminals.
Ojiro leaps overhead, wrapping his tail around a street post and swinging down so it can smash into a villain's face. One of the criminal's swings an arm at him, but they have a sloppy form. The martial artist ducks under the punch and uses his tail to sweep out the villain's legs. “But MY quirk works just fine!”, he flashes his classmates an assuring grin.
Iida adjusts his glasses once he's wiped the fog off them, “Thank you for your assistance, Ojiro! Do you mind leading the charge?”
Before the blonde can respond though, he's taken out by an invisible force. Once the teen is rendered unconscious, a villain with a mutated chameleon quirk reveals they were camouflaged. “Looks like it'll be easy to finish you off.”, the criminal chuckles as his allies arrive.
Iida and Kaminari whirl around in panic as they get surrounded. Their backs collide as they keep spinning, watching out for one another. “What do we do?”, Kaminari shouts over the rain.
“We have no other option.. USE YOUR QUIRK!”, Iida yells back. Kaminari is about to protest out of fear that it'll hurt them, but he's too startled by a villain charging forward.
Then, the area is covered in a flash of lightning. The electricity sparks off the boy and across the water, adding to the powerful shock. Everybody cries out in pain as they're blasted full of voltage. Then, they collapse. The villains are defeated, but the heroes in training are unconscious as well.
In the opposite site, the conflagration zone, another group of students find themselves in a similar predicament. “Dark Shadow is too weak to do anything!”, Tokoyami informs his classmates as the flames lick at the sentient quirk. Koda cowers in fear as villains approach him and Shoji does his best to hold off his own.
“At this rate, we're going to be overpowered!”, Shoji yells in aggravation as he plows through the villains that are trying to tackle him.
“We need assistance..”, Tokoyami wipes away a bead of sweat that's beneath his feathers.
Like the answer to a prayer, a cavalry comes running through. “Mineta?”, Koda whispers in surprise once he sees the short kid charging forward with a high pitched war cry. Purple spheres cling onto the villains, sticking them in place. There's also Aoyama who uses his naval laser to blast a building into debris in order to ward off a few more thugs.
“Have no fear, for WE have arrived!”, the flamboyant french wannabe flails his cape as the fire causes his armor chest piece to glisten.
“Of all the people..”, Tokoyami groans.
Meanwhile, another group of students hold their own in the winter site. Ashido uses her acid to melt her way through the blizzard while Sato uses his strength to bat away any surprise attacks. Sero is there too, tying up the defeated villains with his tape.
Above the flood site, three students fall from the sky. A massive body of water makes up the area, with a single boat in the center of it. The students that are skydiving without parachutes use this to their advantage. Tsuyu Asui fires her tongue like a grappling hook to carry Ochaco Uraraka and Shouto Todoroki. The trio land safely on the boat.
“Thanks, Tsuyu.”, Uraraka breathes a sigh of relief once she feels an actual surface beneath her feet again.
“Ribbit.”, she smiles at her friend in acknowledgment before turning around to check on Todoroki. The heteromorphic boy is looking over the boat's guardrail with a frown on his face. “Are you okay, Todoroki?”, she approaches him to see what the problem is.
“I'm fine..”, he then points to the water below where a group of villains float just above the surface, “But THEY may pose a problem.”
Foes with varying water related quirks stare up at the children. One looks like a shark while another just simply has gills. Regardless of their abilities, it's clear that none are to be underestimated.
Uraraka peeks over the ledge to see the villains too, gasping in a mix of surprise and fear. “They have us completely surrounded! What do we do?”, she begins to panic with a voice laced in worry.
Todoroki ignores her, absentmindedly pointing his finger at each villain as he performs a headcount. “There are twenty-eight enemies above the surface. We should assume there are more below the water as well.”, he keeps his eyes on the villains as he speaks to his classmates.
“They don't seem to be attacking us for some reason.”, Tsuyu observes the villains below before suggesting, “Maybe we should just wait it out.” Uraraka vigorously nods her head in agreement.
“That's a bad idea.”, Todoroki can be just as blunt as the frog feline apparently. “They must not be attacking us because they don't know what our quirks are, if they did, then Asui wouldn't be here.”, Tsuyu tilts her head at that tidbit of information while Uraraka's nod begins to slow down, “However.. They won't just sit there forever. We don't know how long it'll be for help to arrive or if it'll even come at all.”
“But we don't know their quirks either!”, Uraraka worriedly points out.
“We know they're water based, which means that they're in their natural element.”, Todoroki muses before raising his hand, “The thing is.. That also means nothing to me.”
Frost begins to cover the boy's fingers as he steps over the railing. “Todoroki! What are you doing?!”, Uraraka runs forward to stop him while Tsuyu opens her mouth in preparation to use her tongue.
“If this doesn't work, I want you two to escape. Uraraka, use your quirk to make yourself and Asui weightless. Asui can then use her quirk to swing you from the rafters.”, Todoroki doesn't bother glancing back at them as he jumps from the boat's ledge.
Some of the villains below back away at the sudden leap while others hungrily swim forward. Todoroki slaps his hand down on the water before the rest of his body hits. The entire lake is suddenly flash frozen, ice encasing the villains completely. Above him, Uraraka and Asui exhale some condensation in awe of the powerful display.
Shivering from the use of his own quirk, Todoroki slowly stands up. While the feat was an impressive one, that kind of force has some backlash. Todoroki battles some grogginess as he's on the verge of developing hypothermia.
At first, it seemed these criminals were elite to not underestimate. However, it's hard to see them as anything other than low tier thugs that were hoping to simply overwhelm the heroes with their sheer numbers. As Todoroki takes a closer look, he views them as pawns to be used as canon fodder.
The heteromorphic teen approaches one of the villains that still has their head above the ice. “Hey, you. At this rate, your skin will rot away from frostbite.”, he crouches down so his mismatched eyes can meet the villain's, “I'm trying to become a hero and heroes don't allow such horrible things to happen.. so, if you want me to help you.. What makes you think you can kill All Might? Tell me the plan.”
“I- I d- don't know!”, the villain stutters through the clattering of his teeth, “We were only tasked with h- holding you kids off! A- And t- taking one of you c- captive.”
Todoroki raises an eyebrow at that new information. Tsuyu and Uraraka drop down next to him then, having heard the same thing. “Do you think he means Midoriya?”, Asui asks.
“It makes sense since Dekiru was kidnapped by the villains before..”, Uraraka murmurs as she takes her friend's theory into consideration.
“Whoever they're after, we'll need to help. The best option right now is to avoid the center plaza and search the other simulation sites for our classmates.”, Todoroki stands up so he can address them properly.
“Do you think we should split up to cover more ground?”, Uraraka suggests.
“Yes. We'd better do it quickly too.”, Todoroki answers her as he's already walking away.
Meanwhile, another trio of students are having trouble in the landslide zone. Kirishima keeps himself in a hardened state while punching away any villains that get too close. The redhead is back to back with Hagakure and Yaoyorozu.
Hagakure starts to unzip her gym jacket, “I'm going to try and slip away. If they can't see me, I might be able to escape and find some help.”, she explains.
“Go ahead.”, Kirishima gives her a quick nod before jabbing another villain, “Yaoyorozu and I will do our best to hold them off.” The ponytailed girl creates a bow staff, twirling it a bit to ward off any approaching foes.
Kirishima uppercuts an enemy that's made of brick, turning part of them to pebbles. A muscular villain grabs the redhead from behind, turning it into a battle of raw strength. As they struggle, Kirishima digs his feet into the ground so he can get some force behind his push. The two ram into a wall, but it isn't enough to shake the hold.
Yaoyorozu swings her staff against the villain's face, snapping it in two. The hit doesn't seem to have much effect, but it surprises the villain enough to make his grip loosen. Kirishima breaks free with that window of opportunity and releases a volley of punches to their abdomen.
Kirishima turns around when he hears his classmate cry out in pain. “Yaoyorozu!”, he races to catch her after a villain tosses her into the air. After checking her vitals to make sure she's only unconscious, he sets her down gently.
Slowly lifting his head, Kirishima finds that he's completely outnumbered. The odds are stacked against him in a way that no hero, pro or in training, should be able to overcome.
Thinking back to what may as well be his origins, Kirishima feels something somber. It may be unmanly to go down like this, but it's all he ever did while growing up. Nobody believed a quirk like his would be strong enough to overcome the hardships of enemies. It took him longer than he would have liked, but he's managed to make his quirk take a harder form. It took him changing his hair and idolizing heroes like Red Riot to get better. “I'll be damned if I have to go back now!”, he cries out while pushing his quirk to its limit.
A living tar pit brings its fist down on him, lava pouring over the teen. The heat radiates off of the hardened flesh, leaving no lasting mark. A metallic fiend clashes the skin, the steel making no dent whatsoever. Whatever new form Kirishima created for himself, it may as well be unbreakable.
“I won't lose!”, he proclaims. The defense then takes an offensive turn, barreling through enemies like a miniature tank. The hardened fists knock the villains down with one punch, some of them even getting blasted through nearby walls.
Hearing the crunch of gravel behind him, Kirishima whirls around with his fist cocked for another attack. He comes up short when he recognizes the girl that's his fellow classmate. “Oh. It's only you.”, he breathes a sigh of relief as the hardened flesh starts to recede from him.
With the villains taken out, he allows the fatigue from overusing his quirk to set in. When he drops to one knee, the girl starts to approach him, he assumes it's to help stand him back up.
Only, when she leans in close, he feels a sharp pain pierce his side. For a moment, he's too startled to respond or move. The knife that's protruding from his abdomen seeps with blood. “Y- You..”, a strange taste in his mouth makes him swallow.
The girl ignores him, speaking into an earpiece communicator instead. “Kurogiri. I have the objective for Doctor Daruma.”, her voice doesn't have any of the enthusiasm that Kirishima is used to. This is like a whole other person.. a villain.
Chapter 17: A Dim Light Amid Despair: Eve Of The Counterattack
"Twenty-three seconds..", a single eye peers between the fingers of a severed hand. The red iris twitches with each movement of what it watches. Eraserhead is in Tomura Shigaraki's sights; the underground hero continues to hold his own against the collection of low tier criminals. Pretty soon, there will be none left.
Aizawa uses his arm to deflect the punch of a female villain whose quirk gives her pointed fingernails. Before she can reach him with the claw-like appendages, the underground hero brings his bicep up into her stomach. The femme fatale grunts in pain before lashing out in a desperate attempt to strike him back. Aizawa rears away with a single step to avoid the sharpened nails before following through with an uppercut that clips her chin.
Tomura Shigaraki scratches under his neck where the itching is most aggravating. As he lowers his head to watch the female villain get knocked on her ass, his blue lengths of hair hang over his forehead. "Twenty seconds.", he keeps counting down the time.
"How could you?", the female villain wipes the blood that's oozing from a split on her lip, "You hit a woman!" Aizawa recognizes her features from a police report. The long black hair and dark tan matches up with a criminal calling herself Deathstrike.
"No.", he growls without any mercy or remorse. "I hit a criminal.", his correction to her statement is followed by a swift kick that finishes her off. Once she's rendered unconscious, Aizawa turns his gaze to the villain that's covered in hands. "You're all that's left. You must be the boss.", his quirk activates in order to erase the enemy's quirk.
"Twelve seconds.", Tomura Shigaraki continues counting calmly as Eraserhead lashes out with his capture cloth. Even if his disintegration quirk isn't currently working, the villain still grabs the weapon as he dodges it. Whether it's out of force of habit to cling onto something with his fingers, it forces Eraserhead to either withdraw or advance.
Yanking on the cloth as he dashes at the villain, Eraserhead brings his elbow up as a battering ram. As the two slam into one another, their feet skid across the ground from opposing effort. The struggle of strength is over when Tomura Shigaraki grabs onto Eraserhead's elbow.
"It's hard to tell when you're scampering around, but there are moments when your hair falls in front of your eyes.", he starts to monologue in a raspy voice that's the result of too much scratching. Aizawa tries to pull back, thinking this is just another villain trying to give some stupid speech, but the grip on him only tightens. Suddenly, there's a strange searing pain that starts to spread across the hero's elbow. "Your max duration is getting shorter with every time that you finish a given move.", the fingers dig into the crumbling flesh as it decays, "Don't overdo it now, Eraserhead."
Seething through his teeth in pain, AIzawa whips his arm away from the villain. Tomura Shigaraki reaches out with his other hand, but Eraserhead recovers in time to crack his jaw with a counter punch. Leaping away to distance himself from the threat, Aizawa lets out the breath that he was holding in.
Suddenly, a warp gate opens up to bring in reinforcements. Just like their boss said, Eraserhead's hair rises once he activates his quirk. The erasure ability has no effect on physical types, so a villain whose hand is basically a jaw filled with sharpened teeth reaches out in the hopes to sink them in. Ducking under the outstretched arm, Aizawa lassos his capture cloth over their head to snag them by the nape. When another villain tries to bring down their katana to assist, Eraserhead yanks on the cloth in order to use the other villain as a human meat shield.
"Your quirk isn't very good in long group battles, eh? This is kinda different from your usual work, yeah?", Tomura Shigaraki begins to taunt the underground hero in a voice that's laced with amusement. As he watches Eraserhead struggle to fend off three opponents at once, the villain can't help but snicker. With his injury, Aizawa is limited to using one arm now.
Rolling between the legs of a villain whose quirk gives them the attributes of a doberman, Aizawa whips his capture cloth around the thigh of another thug. Pulling on the thread while crouching under the dog hybrid causes him to run right into another criminal. The four armed villain made of cobblestone must have woken up just recently, because he's out for revenge. With one arm holding the capture cloth, Aizawa resorts to using the injured one to block the heavy hit. Eraserhead cries out in pain as the damaged elbow protests against the leverage.
"You specialize in quick sneak attacks, yet you also jumped right into this fight.", Tomura Shigaraki continues to mock the underground hero as he defends himself. Eraserhead kicks the cobblestone villain's shin to bring him down for a knee to the jaw. "Were you hoping to make the kids feel safe?", he asks the rhetorical question as Aizawa slides under the fangs of another opponent. "So cool. So cool.", the praise is without any real sincerity.
Eraserhead jabs his knuckles into the throat of the villain in front of him before rolling over the back of another that tries tackling from behind. Using caltrops like shurikens, Aizawa throws them into the shoulder of his enemy before kicking out the back of their leg. Stomping his foot on their face for extra measure, Eraserhead leaps overhead to whip his capture cloth in a wide arc to bind the remaining foes. When he comes back down, he uses the momentum to slam them into the ground.
Tomura Shigaraki gives Eraserhead a feigned applause. "For your efforts.. You should know that I'm not the final boss for you to face, hero.", he spits the last word like it leaves a bad taste in his mouth.
The hulking abomination that's covered in scars stomps forward like it's being summoned. "Meet the ANTI symbol of peace.", Shigaraki presents the monster with the giddiness of a child and the showmanship of a circus ringmaster, "The bio-engineered.. NOMU!"
The creature's beak creaks open to let out a small crow in response to its master. Despite the brain that's poking out of the thing's head, it's pretty obvious that it's intelligence must be rather low. Eraserhead dashes forward, prepared to utilize the weakness in its IQ.
Nomu swings its arm in a wide arc, something Eraserhead can cling onto and maneuver under. Aizawa flips himself around its massive deltoid so he can land behind it. With the monster's left side exposed, the hero lashes out with two swift jabs. Nomu turns its head, completely unphased by the punches.
Aizawa doesn't have enough time to dodge the massive hand that makes a grab for him. Choking under the pressure it has on his neck AND chest, he desperately tries to bring his legs up so they can hook around its bicep. Clasping to the beast's wrist with his own hands, Aizawa twists his body around in an attempt to break its grip. While the effort may seem futile there, it's enough to pivot the creature by its own weight. Throwing the genetic monstrosity over with a small flip, Eraserhead manages to slip free by the skin of his teeth.
It was only for a short time that the hero was deprived of oxygen, but he's still left gasping for air. The aching of his lungs could have been from the crushing strength of Nomu or the lack of breathing earlier, but it may as well be dealer's choice when the monster steps down on his leg. The bone pops out of its socket first, followed by the initial crack and then a full shatter. Aizawa yells in agony as the weight increases on the leg.
"Canceling out quirks is pretty cool.", Shigaraki wobbles from foot to foot as he watches like a child engrossed by their television's cartoon channel. "It's cool, but nothing special. When up against crazy strength, you may as well be totally quirkless.", Nomu snaps Aizawa's arm like a twig for further emphasis.
Eraserhead's eyes flare red as they glare at the experiment, an attempt to erase its quirk. Looking at any part of the creature should be enough to nullify its power; that means whatever comes next is purely its base strength. Nomu practically sits on Aizawa before wrapping its hand around his head and slamming it down. The creature crows as it does this again, smearing the floor in the hero's gushing blood.
"It looks like I've cleared the first level.", Tomura Shigaraki refers to the fallen heroes, Thirteen & Eraserhead, as he speaks in video game terms. Like a spoiled brat getting exactly what they wanted, he begins to bound over to where Nomu is keeping Aizawa pinned down. "The worst part is the loading screen, so I hope you don't mind if I kill a little time..", his fingers twiddle as his hand reaches for Eraserhead.
Meanwhile, two of Aizawa's students face their own dire situation in the Ruins Zone. Debris scatters across the ground, only kicking up more dust. The devastation of brick, sand, and dirt create a dangerous smokescreen. Low tier thugs litter the area, some fleeing from the destruction while others take cover with the intent to wait it out.
At the center of all the chaos, a villain bound by a black straitjacket is wailing like they're in agony. "Flesh! NEED FLESH!", they're foaming out of the area in their mask that leaves the mouth exposed. Despite the metal clamps that restrain their head and body, they continue to flail around as elongated teeth stretch like tentacles. The protruding points impale a few of the other villains while some of the teeth tear through the ground.
Kyoka Jirou drags Izuku Midoriya behind the remains of a cement slab so they can hide. Ever since they'd arrived, the boy showed zero signs of comprehension to his surroundings. Since he was in such a dazed state of mind, the girl was left to protect him from the attacking clan of villains. One of the thugs managed to cut her arm and the one in a straitjacket went berserk.
Coughing from the cloud of dust that gets kicked up near them, Jirou tries fanning it away. "Midoriya! Come on! Snap out of it!", she literally tries shaking some sense into him. When the greenette still remains unresponsive, she bites her lip in worry and peeks over the cement slab to see if anybody spotted them. No villains seem to be looking in their direction and the havoc is a safe enough distance away.
"Whatever happened to the brave suicidal blockhead that always runs into danger?", she tries jabbing him with her jacks in an effort to jolt him a bit. Izuku Midoriya remains unblinking, his face left in a petrified expression. "What happened?", she asks in a low tone.
Izuku doesn't hear a single word she says. The green orbs in his eyes don't see anything either. Currently, his mind is working overtime with steaming gears. Years of torture and experimentation being invoked on his body keeps flooding his system. Memories that were meant to be locked away keep crashing through the open door.
Daruma Ujiko splicing and tethering different pieces of DNA into Izuku's give the boy a strong phantom pain that he's unable to cry from. The doctor was the same one that diagnosed him as quirkless on his fourth birthday. All For One, a cruel embodiment of evil, was apparently looking for quirkless children to experiment on. Izuku Midoriya was just an easy and perfect target.
The healing quirk was only given to him to keep him alive throughout the process. All the blood loss and organ failures would have proved fatal otherwise. All For One ensured that the quirk would be a dreadful one though, the drawbacks being the most excruciating. The speed of the healing process depends on the severity of the injury, slower for small wounds and faster for more life threatening ones. The worst part though.. while the injury would mend itself, the agonizing pain would remain for a few hours afterwards.
Then came the quirk combinations. Doctor Daruma's surgery was meant to make Izuku capable of surviving the experience, not reduce the torture. All For One forcing so many powers into the child at once was more tormenting than the genetic splicing. A few times, Izuku's heart stopped, even his healing quirk not being strong enough to keep him alive. All For One or Doctor Daruma would just revive him to continue the experiment.
Izuku remembers how he got his transformation quirk now. A concoction of strength enhancers and endurance quirks proved too strenuous on his body. All For One then granted Izuku a quirk that would create a physical form more capable of containing the others. Izuku would refuse to activate the power regardless of the beatings he would receive, resulting in the punishment of its activation. What started as a simple thought was turned into the requirement to harm himself and ironically focus on whatever task he needs to perform with the form.
Doctor Daruma apparently always dreamed of creating something called 'Gigantomachia', which then turned Izuku into the first of his guinea pigs to try forcing in a size manipulation quirk. However, Izuku learned to retain that ability by composing himself during the transformations. Yet another punishment was induced as a result, a stockpiling quirk that feeds off of pent up rage. The anger quirk was binded to the gigantification one in order to force the titan ability.
Izuku remained defiant, fueled by that trait from Katsuki Bakugo. As a result, Doctor Daruma performed surgery on the greenette's brain, tweaking his cognitive functions so he would lose control over them while in his titan form. All For One then deemed it fit to tack on more quirks so their creation could match opponents such as All Might. What started as a test subject for future projects suddenly turned into something useful.
Then came the day that Izuku picked at his own brain, he dug through his own flesh and skull to damage the organ. Fingernails chipped at it until they crumbled. The healing quirk saved him from dying, but the damage was done. Whatever tweaking Doctor Daruma had done was slightly altered; it was ruined to the extent that he could rebel against his transformation's size again.
Having considered him a failure, the villains discarded Izuku Midoriya. The boy's memory had been wiped.. until now.
"I remember..", Jirou can barely hear what he mumbles despite her quirk's amplification of sound. The dead stare he once had fixates itself on the girl in front of him, watering a bit before they blink and focus on his surroundings instead. Seeing the low tier thugs be buried by the rampaging villain, he feels that stockpiled rage boil inside of him. "I REMEMBER EVERYTHING!", he shouts while jumping to his feet with rejuvenated energy.
Having already figured out a method for his transformation, Izuku brings his hand up towards his mouth so he can bite down on it. Channeling his fury towards the villain that's creating malice for everyone, he widens his jaws over his thumb.
Jirou grabs his wrist, harshly yanking it away before he can take a bite. "Stop! Don't!", her pleading tone is enough to reach him through the stockpiled hatred. "We can still make it out of this without resorting to that. You still have THIS.", she roughly grabs the capture cloth that's draped around his neck like a scarf.
It burns his throat on the way down, but Izuku swallows the rage he allowed to surface. "I'm sorry.. You're right..", his voice is a whisper but Jirou hears the sincerity in it. She lets him go now that he's calmed down, the two of them backing away a little.
However, his callout earlier didn't go unnoticed. The rampaging villain is upon them now, his sharpened teeth raining down like a living storm. "Watch out!", Izuku shoves the girl away in time, the blades piercing the ground instead. Left with his own to dodge though, he only manages to evade a few while gaining two scratches around his leg.
Pushing off with the same leg anyways, he ignores the pain in order to jump back from a second barrage. As he's soaring through the air, Izuku undoes the capture cloth that Aizawa gave him in order to fight back.
"Midoriya!", Jirou climbs to her feet so she can help him. However, she has her own problems. The other villains that were dropped at the site begin to surround her now that their ally isn't attacking them. "Shit..", she grumbles under her breath as she slowly backs away.
Izuku ducks under another jagged tooth, the stretching canines coming close to nicking his shoulder. With his other hand, the hero in training uses the capture cloth like a whip to strike the villain. Reeling it back as he leans away from a counter strike, Izuku attempts to use it as a lasso next.
Jirou plugs her jacks into the ground, amplifying her pounding heartbeat. "Back off, jerkoffs!", the sonic blasts knock most of them away while the ground crumbling under the force is enough to throw others off balance. A katana clatters next to her, having slipped from one of the villain's grips. Grabbing it to use as her own weapon, she swings it haphazardly to threaten them, "I said back off!"
Izuku wraps the capture cloth around his opponent's waist, yanking on it in order to pull the villain down from their perch. Rushing forward while they're down, he slides under a jagged tooth and somersaults over another. A strew of them come up like a set of bars, likely the villain's last line of defense. Rather than falling back though, Izuku plows through with his elbows braced to shatter them.
Jirou jabs the blade towards one of the villains to ward them off, leaving herself open for another to attack from behind. Her jacks react like they have a mind of their own, jabbing the criminal and jolting them with a loud heartbeat. She then swings the katana to slice off the hand of a villain that tries grabbing her, wincing at the sight of their blood.
Izuku brings his knee up into his enemy's jaw, driving them back by sheer strength. Not allowing any room for recovery, he follows through with a few jabs and an uppercut. He grabs the villain by their mask, prepared to slam their head down on his knee again. When he tries though, they bite down on the flesh, their teeth sinking into it like they're starving.
Crying out in pain, Izuku brings his elbow down on their head in an effort to shake them off. When the villain doesn't budge, he does it again.. and again.. and again. Finally, the villain recoils with their own shout of pain, which Izuku cuts off with a jab to their throat.
The greenette tries to keep attacking, but he ends up staggering from the loss of balance. Both of his legs have been injured now, but not enough for his healing factor to fully fix. Luckily, the villain seems to be in a similar state of suffering as they try to stand back up.
Jirou brings the katana down on a villain who's capable of folding in on themself like an armadillo. The sword rattles with the vibration of colliding against a hard shell. While she's disoriented, the villain rams into her like a living cannonball. Jirou stabs the blade into the ground, dragging it through the dirt in an attempt to brace herself.
Suddenly, the dirt beneath her begins to shift. A hand protrudes from the floor, clasping her boot with claws that are sharp enough to pierce the leather. Jirou cries out in pain as it tries dragging her under. Using the sword as her last resort, she jams into a random spot. When the hand that's grabbing her boot goes limp, she yanks it out to block another attack from the armadillo villain.
The padding around the armadillo opens up so he can land another blow, making Jirou stagger back a few steps. When she tries to strike back though, the armor closes around them to defend against the katana. However, Jirou starts to sense the pattern, watching her enemy closely as the pads pop open to expose flesh again. Before she can bring the sword down on it though, she's backed over a ledge and goes tumbling over some small cliff.
Izuku sways to the right to avoid the villain's gnashing teeth. Jumping behind them to strafe any secondary attack, he throws out an extended kick just to be safe. Pushing off the villain, Izuku slams himself against the makeshift ruins of the environment. He's forced to bring his arms up to block as the villain comes barreling towards him.
The two crash through the brick wall, debris rolling off their backs as they go flying over a small cliff. Izuku brings his knees up into the villain's stomach, rolling backwards so they take the blunt of the impact. They skid across some rocks before getting knocked apart, each of them tumbling the rest of the way down.
Jirou uses the katana as a crutch, forcing herself to stand. One of her jacks wipes away a bead of sweat that's just above a patch of blood on her forehead. Across from the girl is the armadillo villain who came out completely unscathed, having used his padding as a way to safely chase after her.
He charges, but she knows it's a feint and responds with one of her own. When the padding closes, she twirls the katana back around so she can be capable of swinging it down again. The villain's eyes widen in horror when their armor recedes. Jirou stabs the criminal straight through the chest, shoving them with all her might. Pulling it back out, she whips it at her side to take some of the blood off. Her enemy falls over, clutching their wound.
"Whoa.. You can use a katana?", she spins around with the blade raised, expecting to find another villain. Instead, she sees Izuku Midoriya standing there with his hands raised in a soothing surrender gesture. "It's just me. You got them all.", he tries reassuring her for extra measure.
Peeking over her friend's shoulder, she sees the unconscious body of the villain that was going on a rampage earlier. "You didn't do so bad either.", she factiously nods towards the body behind him so he can look too.
Izuku lowers his hands, easing into a grin as he returns the playful teasing with some of his own. "Give me a katana and I'd probably be able to slice down a group too.", his sly shrug causes her to smirk with a scoff.
Bringing the sword to her side, she relaxes as well. "You've got no excuses with that cloth of yours since Aizawa-Sensei is handling a group too.", she then realizes what she said and spins around to face the direction of the center plaza, "Oh shit! That's right! Aizawa-Sensei needs our help!"
Izuku wastes no time in jogging over to her, "You're right! We have to hurry!"
"Not so fast!", the two are interrupted by a villain dropping down in between them. Jirou and Midoriya are knocked back in opposite directions, a flaming person rising amidst the settling dust. "I figured I'd wait for the others to finish you off, but it looks like I've gotta do things myself.", embers of fire flicker from their lips like spit as they snicker.
Izuku grabs the capture cloth that's wrapped around his neck while Jirou tightens her grip around the hilt of her katana. Before either of them can do anything though, a tongue shoots out around the villain's waist and whips them into the air. The criminal screams as they're tossed out of the disaster simulation site.
"Tsuyu!?", Jirou cries out in a mix of surprise and relief once the frog lass drops down. The greenette rubs some soot off of her tongue, letting out a slight whimper since it was singed by the flames.
"Not that I'm not grateful.. But what are you doing here? Were you hiding somewhere this whole time?", Izuku cautiously steps around her so he can be at a better angle if this is some sort of trick.
"Todoroki-Kun and Ochaco-Chan were with me in the Flood Zone. Todoroki froze the lake and interrogated one of the villains; they're apparently looking to kidnap somebody. We thought it might be YOU, Midoriya.", Tsuyu does her best to explain the situation while nursing a burned tongue.
Jirou glances at Izuku in worry, the grip on her katana tightening only slightly. "Whether that's the case or not, we should probably try regrouping with the others.", she suggests.
"Todoroki is checking the Downpour Zone and Uraraka is at the Conflagration Zone.", Tsuyu stops explaining once she sees Izuku walking away, "Where are you going, Midoriya?"
"To the plaza. Aizawa-Sama might need help since he was left all alone.", Izuku picks up his pace as the urgency to get there becomes more evident, "He isn't suited for group battles, even a pro hero like him can't nullify ALL their quirks at once."
"We're coming with you!", Jirou shouts as she runs after him, "You'll need backup if the villains really are trying to take you again."
"I don't like this.", Tsuyu follows them while speaking bluntly like her usual self, "This is dangerous; you're basically giving them what they want if you're their target."
"There's a chance that they might be trying to capture somebody else.. Either way.. They're not getting away.", Izuku hops off the last of the zone's structure. Just ahead of him is the trail that leads to the plaza.
Meanwhile, Toru Hagakure slips out the front door of the USJ building. Kurogiri turns towards the small movement caught in his peripheral vision. Noticing that the door is slightly cracked open, he hums to himself before warping over to Tomura Shigaraki.
"Kurogiri? Do you have a status report?", the villain leader pauses just before his hand can reach Eraserhead's face. Tomura glances at his ally from the corner of his eyes, expecting an answer.
"Everything was going smoothly, but it seems a student managed to escape.", Kurogiri responds with mild dismay.
"Oh?..", Tomura begins to slowly retract his hand from the hero at his mercy. "Huh..", he's either taking it better than Kurogiri expected or he's too shocked to say anything. Slowly, he begins to drag his fingernails against his neck, "Huuhhh..", the scratching intensfies as his frustration becomes more evident. "Kurogiri. You -- I'd turn you to dust if you weren't our ticket out of here!", he angrily snarls at the fellow villain, "We won't stand a chance against dozens of pros!"
Behind them, the trio from the ruins zone stealthily sneak forward to hide behind the fountain. Each of them are prepared to defend themselves or intervene at any given notice. Midoriya keeps a hand on the capture cloth, Jirou steadies her sword, and Asui crouches low enough so she's able to leap whenever necessary.
"Looks like it's game over..", Tomura Shigaraki ceases the scratching before allowing his hands to go limp at his sides, "It's game over. For now."
From the way the purple mist wisps around, Kurogiri must have turned his head in confusion. "We're leaving?", he hesitantly asks.
"Yeah..", Tomura staggers in a disappointed sulk as he leaves behind Eraserhead. To have gone through all this and then leave on a whim, it's more baffling to the students that are watching the exchange than Kurogiri or Aizawa. Regardless, the trio starts to relax as relief settles in, they're all glad that the assault is coming to an end. "But before that.", Shigaraki suddenly turns on his heel to face the fountain, "Let's leave behind a few dead kids to wound the pride of All Might!"
The villain is shockingly faster than they appear, already upon them with an outstretched hand. Suddenly, it's like everything is going in slow motion. Having experienced firsthand what Tomura Shigaraki's quirk is capable of, Izuku's eyes follow the movement of the fingers.. towards Kyoka Jirou. While his skin might be pale, his internal fiber gets overloaded with unprecedented anger. Aizawa told him something back on the bus, that he needs to try channeling that rage into a more condensed form of power, one he can control. Having the memories from his time in captivity returned, Izuku recalls doing something similar when rebelling against the gigantification aspect. Finding the resolve to try it out, he opens his mouth while raising his hand, prepared to bite down.
Even without her jacks plugged in, Jirou hears a familiar heartbeat. At first, she thinks the terrifying noise belongs to the villain, but soon recognizes it as Izuku Midoriya's. Despite the deadly hand that's reaching for her face, her eyes turn towards him instead, hoping to catch one last glimpse of him. The expression on his face isn't the shy blush he occasionally tries to hide or the cute grin he gets when teasing her; it's something more terrifying than a villain's glare.
Izuku focuses on Tomura Shigaraki, the torture that he experienced and all the experimentation he endured singling the villain out as the one responsible.
Then.. Izuku bites his hand.
Green lightning strikes the center of the plaza, a miniature explosion being enough to blow everyone away. The blast radius knocks the hand that's on Shigaraki's face off, making him fall flat on his back from the gust of wind. Kyoka Jirou and Tsuyu Asui shield their eyes from the bright glow, hands covering their faces as their hair is whipped up by the strong force.
Aizawa weakly raises his head from the small crater that was formed by it getting bashed into the ground. Despite the blurred vision from his concussion and the blood that's pooling down his face, he's able to see the transformation firsthand. Gritting his teeth, he refrains from cursing over his inability to prevent the kids from having to protect themselves.
Shigaraki is disoriented for a while, panicking over the loss of the hand on his face. "Father..", he calls out to it as he tries to take it back.
Suddenly, a separate hand grips the villain by his throat, the grip almost strong enough to pop his head off. Darting through the steam left behind from the explosion, is a transformed Izuku Midoriya. The monster roars in Tomura Shigaraki's face as it strangles the villain with one arm.
Tsuyu's normally stoic expression morphs into something that conveys genuine terror.
Tomura's face is about to be as blue as his hair, the lack of any oxygen making him kick and flail as he's raised off the ground. The villain grabs the monster's arm with his own hands, all ten fingers activating his decay quirk and severing the limb. Izuku's monstrous form rears back as the arm gets torn off. Blood splashes across the floor and splatters against Shigaraki.
Greedily gasping for air, Tomura coughs in between his choked inhales. "Nomu..", he gags on his own raspy voice, it feels like his decay quirk ate through his throat. Pointing a finger at the one armed creature in front of him, Shigaraki hisses with venom, "KILL HIM!"
Cocking back his remaining arm, the monster prepares to finish off Shigaraki. Suddenly, Nomu inserts itself in between its master and the transformed version of Izuku. Izuku's fist collides with the slab of meat, Nomu's chest rippling from the force of the impact but leaving no trace of any real damage.
The two creations are at the same height, matching one another in horrific details. Regardless of that, Izuku's next punch is caught by the Nomu, its grip on his wrist snapping the bone in half. Izuku's monster form screeches in pain as it gets hoisted up and slammed down into the pavement.
Despite his vulnerable condition, Izuku lashes out by chomping down on the Nomu's ankle. Nomu shrieks from whatever pain it might feel before bringing its other foot down on Izuku's head. The crushing blow leaves a physical dent in the other creature's cranium, blood pooling from a split in its head. It's about to bring its foot down again to finish what it started, but Izuku rolls out of the way.
Staggering to its feet and then stumbling to one knee, the damaged version of Izuku growls in agonized anger. It sways from left to right while trying to charge the Nomu, but it only gets laid out by a single punch from the opposing monster.
Bones shatter from the powerful blow, rattling the remaining body of the altered Izuku Midoriya. Blood gushes out from between its teeth, a soft hiss emitting from the injuries as it collides with the ground. Cracks jut out from beneath Izuku as the Nomu stomps a triumphant foot down on his chest. Nomu practically flexes its muscles as it screeches down at its opponent.
The shattered bone that makes Izuku's wrist eases from the torn flesh, clattering against the floor. Left in its place is something that slowly grows to reattach itself to his hand. Once the bone gets fixed, the wrist twitches with returned movement.
Izuku roars back as his hand grabs at an exposed scar just under the Nomu's knee. Fingers sink into the cut, wringing the muscle fiber like claws digging into prey. Nomu shrieks as it tries to pull away, but Izuku keeps clinging to its leg.
Nomu flings its foot, kicking Izuku just high enough to grab him by the hair. Nomu cocks its fist back, preparing to smash the opposing monster's face in. Not accepting defeat so easily, Izuku grabs at another scar that's on the arm holding him by the hair. When fingers sink into that cut too, Nomu whips its head back in a furious howl.
The Nomu's beak then clamps down on Izuku's remaining arm, twitching with a strong enough force to snap the bone again, but its at the elbow this time. One more tug and the arm is torn off, leaving Izuku with two missing limbs. Nomu then follows through with a strong uppercut, one that sends Izuku soaring into the sky.
Izuku bounces across the ice surrounding the flood zone, like when you skip a stone across a lake. The creature cries out as if its begging for help as it lands on the boat, the entire structure collapsing from the impact. Then, an explosion erupts from the ship and fire consumes the area that Izuku landed.
Having watched the entire battle, Tomura heaves a breath of relief as he's helped to his feet by Kurogiri. "Are you alright, Tomura Shigaraki?", the misty man asks as the fellow villain places the 'father' hand back over his face.
"I'll feel a lot better after I kill some kids.", the villain seethes through his teeth while whipping around to face Kyoka Jirou and Tsuyu Asui. The two girls are frozen in a state of petrification after witnessing their friend's transformation and demise. "This one reminds me of that brat that tried to choke me to death.", Shigaraki gestures to Tsuyu's green hair, "Let's start with her.."
Neither girl can react before he grasps her face, all five fingers making contact with her skin. When nothing happens, nobody expects Shigaraki to snicker over the lack of a kid being disintegrated. "You really are cool..", his head whips back to glare at Aizawa, "Eraserhead!"
The underground hero stares at the villain with glowing red eyes, his erasure quirk active. Water edges the corners of his eyes though, showing how much strain he's putting on them.
"Let's see how long you can keep it up though.", Shigaraki grips Tsuyu's face a little tighter as an unspoken threat to both her and Kyoka Jirou not to try anything.
Aizawa grunts as he struggles to continue staring at the villain, his head shaking from the effort of keeping it raised. Blood drips from his brow, almost causing him to blink.. ALMOST.
"Tick tock, tick tock. Should I count it down, then?", Shigaraki starts to taunt the hero, "Three.."
Kurogiri's eyes narrow as they watch the underground hero closely, the yellow slits glowing just as intently as the red ones. "Two..", Shigaraki continues counting.
Aizawa makes a weak noise that almost sounds like a desperate plea for the villain to stop.
The doors to the USJ are blown off their hinges. Standing at the entrance is the symbol of peace, the number one hero, All Might. However, he's missing his signature smile, it's replaced with an angry frown. "Fear not!", he delivers his iconic line anyways, "I AM HERE!"
Tomura Shigaraki lets his hand slip from Tsuyu Asui's face, which in turn allows Aizawa to let himself pass out now that he's no longer needed to protect her. Having succumbed to his injures, the underground hero is rendered unconscious and all that's left as the last line of defense is All Might.
"Ah..", Tomura nods his head in satisfied understanding, "To be continued, then."
I honestly dunno whether your theories in the comments give me extreme ecstasy or overwhelming anxiety; it's probably something in between those two. It reminds me a lot of the theories the actual AOT & MHA mangas have. I apologize for not responding to any of them personally, but I don't know how without giving anything away. Regardless, I wanted to let you know I find it super cool rather than keep ignoring them.