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How to Start a Dubious Friendship

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Villains were not in the habit of leaving Uravity their number. But there’s no other clue remaining by the time she and Iida find the abandoned warehouse, nothing but empty boxes that used to contain quirk support gear. The designs for the gear were created by and stolen from Melissa Shield and Mei Hatsume, top genius inventors at the forefront of hero-gear development.

Arms dealing is just one of Deku’s many crimes yet ironically, he has yet to commit the most common transgression: Illegal use of a quirk in public.

Iida tells her it’s a bad idea, but she messages the number anyway. They might as well try to get as many leads as possible.

 

### ### ####

Hello? Someone left this number for me to find, who are you?

Wooooah, I didn’t expect you to take the bait Uravity!

Who are you?

Who do you expect?

Deku

Ding ding ding, you win!

No offense, but you’re not exactly the most reputable source. How do I know you’re not just a grunt-level villain impersonating him?

Please, as if anyone would be suicidal enough to impersonate me. But if you want proof:

[image sent] Here’s my helmet.

 

Uraraka immediately sends the picture to Iida, who will make sure a team of tech analysts pull any clue they can about Deku’s location or identity out of it. Although she doubts he was foolish enough to leave his location signature on the picture before sending it.

 

I won’t ask you for anything, I know this is your number

And I know that you probably have software uploading all of this to Team Idaten’s database

 

Uraraka makes a mental note to do that as soon as possible.

 

Why risk talking to me then?

Well…

The benefits outweighed the cost of any slipups I might make

I don’t anticipate there will be a lot of those, though

I’m not giving away anything from my end either

So why bother?

Let’s just say I see a lot of promise in you!

What, you want me to join you?

No thanks.

Nonono oh god no, you’d make a terrible villain!

But you do make a very good hero!

…ok,

I’m not following

Hm. Since you’re so good, I think I’ll tell you.

It’s simple: I love heroes. Always have.

I want to help heroes improve by challenging them, becoming something for them to conquer and rise above

I mean, look at the riff-raff they call villains nowadays. It’s pathetic! Pros can take them out in five minutes or less!

So, by being the best villain, I can help heroes become the best at what they do too!

…Or you could just not make our lives harder?

But Uravity-chan,

Where’s the fun in that??

This is all just fun to you? Causing chaos and violence? We found your empty warehouse and we don’t know exactly what kind of weapons you’ve been distributing, but those could be used to seriously hurt someone!!!

Well then, some heroes better show up to save the day when they do! (*^^*)

You’re horrible

I don’t ask you to understand me

If you did, we’d both have a problem

I’m done with this

I’m not gonna waste my time talking to a crazy villain

Uravity-chan… (╥_╥)

Byyyyyye  y( ̄ー ̄)y

 

### ### ####

[image sent]

…what is this?

My pet bunny being adorable

…Why are you sending me this? Why are you contacting me at all?

Because someone never blocked me?

I’ll fix that

Ok go ahead. I just thought some pictures of cute animals might cheer you up. I know you’ve had a rough day.

Ew, creeper.

It’s not creeping, the entire villain underground knows you just took down Mockingbird. Word travels fast.

Fantastic. That’s just what I needed. To be sitting here in the hospital vomiting from vertigo and pain while every villain in the city knows how I just got my ass kicked.

Well, consider the other guy

Lol good point

…Do you really have a pet rabbit?

Uravity-chan,

I have all the rabbits.

I steal them from shelters.

DEKU WHAT THE FUCK!?

Nobody bothers to learn how to take care of rabbits before they buy them!!! So then they go to shelters, and everyone wants to adopt a dog or cat because rabbits are high maintenance, and then they’re just stuck there!

So I break in and steal them.

Are you some kind of rabbit hoarder?!?

Yuck no. Hoarders take on more pets than they can handle. I take very very good care of all my bunnies.

A good chunk of that money from the designer store my minions robbed last week is going to this sweetheart:

[image sent]

…I cannot believe you robbed a store for your rabbit.

…But that is a very cute rabbit.

Lol she’s the only one I’m getting legally, so it’s worth it.

She’s a blanc de hotot rabbit, the species is endangered but she’s sterile so no breeding program will take her.

Idk what to name her yet.

Snowflake?

Hmm, no.

I usually name my rabbits after pro heroes.

Oh I’ve got it!

Shimura

…After Nana Shimura? I’m surprised you know about that hero. She died a long time ago.

She was my mom’s favorite heroes when she was a kid, so we had a little figurine of her in our kitchen when I was growing up.

Plus, All Might was a teacher when I was at UA. He mentioned his old mentor a few times, so my classmates did some snooping and we think he was either referencing Nana Shimura or Gran Torino.

Shimura is perfect. (*^^*)

 

Are you really going to name her that?

Of course!

Thanks for picking out the name, I’ve been struggling all week.

Np! I’m glad I could

help

What’s wrong?

Nothing.

Can you send pictures of the rest of your bunnies?

I’d be happy to!

[image sent]

Awwww (´⌣`ʃƪ)

This is Death Arms. He be fierce.

Lol nooooooo why would you name him after Death Arms? He’s just a cute little fluffball.

I keep him in the same pen as the first one I sent you, Shinrin. I got them from the same shelter too. They’re bunny buds.

You mean you STOLE them from the same shelter -`д´-

Got, stole, what’s the difference?

Is Shinrin named after Kamui Woods?

Yee

Aww, I like his little red ribbon.

Next is All Might, are you prepared?

Oh boy

Ok I’m ready

[image sent]

Lollllllllllll

Are you saying All Might is old?

Not necessarily. I’ve had this rabbit the longest so he is pretty old now

But he’s distinguished and majestic

Yes, a very majestic bun

Guess what I named this next one?

[image sent]

Um… fluffy?

Kacchan

AAAAAAAAAA

I CAN’T UNSEE IT

He’s grumpy, he hates cuddles, and he’ll bite you if you bother him while he’s eating.

He’s perfect (´⌣`ʃƪ)

I wanna cuddle

Don’t. Beware. He’ll scratch your eyes out.

I don’t care I wanna cuddle he’s so fluffy.

You have been warned. Cuddle at your own risk.

Are you feeling any better?

I… I am.

I’ve stopped vomiting at least.

That’s good!

Gtg for now, villain duty calls

What kind of villain duty?

Lol nope.

Nice try.

Not telling.

(ーー;) Now I won’t stop wondering.

You’ll hear about it in the news tomorrow I’m sure

Now I REALLY won’t be able to stop wondering!

Don’t make me walk out of this hospital Deku!

Nonono don’t worry about it! Other heroes will handle it, get some rest!

Ugh fine

Thank you for telling me about your adorable bunnies.

Anytime Uravity-chan!

Ttyl!

Byeeee

 

*Aggressive Arm Chopping*

Hey Iida?

I think Deku’s up to something.

You’re still messaging him???

He doesn’t give away much :/

But he said villain duty calls and that I'd hear about it on the news tomorrow

Just letting you know, he’s gonna make a move

I don’t like that you’re in such direct contact with a villain Ochako

It’s dangerous.

I’ll be okay Iida, I can handle Deku.

Did you know he has pet bunnies?

…Bunnies

Yeah five of them

Well four going on five

They’re really cute

…This is what you talk to a wanted criminal about.

Bunnies.

…yes (*^^*)

Get some rest Ochako

And remind me to get the team to do another sweep of your phone. Who knows what malicious code he’s planted?

Okie

Ill sleep now

…You did fantastic work today. Mockingbird never stood a chance.

Thank u for backing me up

It is my duty as the leader of Idaten.

…I will always back you up Ochako.

Rest well.

 

Keeper of the Bun

Deku.

I have a question.

Are you a follower of Stain?

Yaaay! Floaty waifu returns!!!

The FUCK? ಠ_ಠ

As for Stain, no

God no

No I’m sorry, what was that about floaty waifu!?!

Stain was a whack-job who wins the title for Captain Obvious.

I mean, of course heroes have selfish motivations

We’re humans, we all have selfish motivations, just because people want to hold heroes to a higher standard doesn’t mean they’re always going to meet them

But yeah

Why do you ask?

…Why did you kill Endeavor?

You said you love heroes, right?

I eliminated Endeavor because he was a monster and it personally offended me that he would never change, never get punished, and always be considered a hero

I wouldn’t use Stain’s metric of judgment to determine which heroes are unworthy of their titles but Endeavor?

Endeavor was the worst

Would you kill other heroes you thought were unworthy?

I might

I don’t want to name any names though, you might get in the way

Two Words:

Grape Juice

Omg yes, 1000 times yes, I will gladly squish him Ψ( ̄∀ ̄)Ψ

Something is bothering me tho

It seems like you’re using the victim of an abuser as an excuse to justify murder

You’re kidding yourself if you think you were some sort of hero to Shouto

Don’t—just don’t. Don’t go there.

I know I’m not a hero

I’ll never be a hero

I could take down a thousand villains and a thousand Endeavors and I would never be a hero

You really think I’m THAT delusional?

It’s just… the way you were talking to him…

Manipulation 101

It’s insidious toxic and wrong, don’t mistake it for heroism

You said, “don’t blame anyone but me.”

Because obviously, there is no one to blame BUT me

Yeah, but when you point it out like that it’s almost like you’re saying, “don’t go on some self-loathing guilt trip where you think this was your fault.”

You heroes are prone to do that

But no

It wasn’t an act of kindness

I just wanted credit for offing the scumbag in the most painful way possible

…Never mind. I don’t know what I see in you (--;

Ttyl Uravity-chan! (*^^*)

 

Keeper of the Bun

Hey, so what’s your deal with Ground Zero?

Ah, yes, my dear sweet nemesis (´⌣`ʃƪ)

Isn’t it a little old-fashioned, having an archenemy?

Maybe, but it’s lots of fun!

I don’t think Bakugou would agree with you

Kacchan rarely agrees with anyone on anything

Lol gp

But I’d still rather devote my energy to saving people than chasing down one villain all the time.

That’s because you’re an angel~

But Zero is motivated by competition

Gosh, you really do know him well

We’re practically married at this point

 

Keeper of the Bun

Deku

I found a puppers

[image sent]

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!

So cute!!!

He’s a good boi ^^

I’ve just realized I’ve gotta go rescue his owner tho

Lol Good Luck Uravity-chan!

 

Keeper of the Bun

Is the puppers ok?

Yee, both the puppers and his owner are safe and sound.

Yay. (*^^*) Good work!

Thanks (*^^*)

How’s Shimura? Has she arrived yet?

Yee, she arrived yesterday. Some stuffy suit from Hotot Rabbit Breeders International came to inspect the pen I have set up for her. It passed. I got all the gold stars. (*^^*)

Nice!

Customs have her in quarantine right now. I sent a minion to go check on her and she seems a little reserved, but she’s adjusting well.

Aww, that’s good. How long will she be in quarantine?

A month (╥_╥)

(╥_╥) (╥_╥) (╥_╥)

I’m tempted to go break her out of there…

Deku NO

I know I know!

I promised I would obtain Shimura through 100% legal means

Good. Make sure you stick to that promise.

It’s hard though! I’ve been trying to get her for almost a year and I want her to be home now! I want to introduce her to All Might. (╥_╥)

Don’t mess this up now. You’re almost there. It’s only one more month! And you can see her every day if you want.

Lol no I can’t.

Why not?

Who else is gonna have a rare rabbit in quarantine right now??? If I went to go see her in person, one tip from you would be all it takes to get me arrested.

…Oh

…I’ll have my minion take a picture of her and share it with you next time I send someone to check on her, okay?

Okie (*^^*)

 

### ### #####

[Message From: Unknown Number]

[image sent]

Deku???

[the number you messaged is no longer available]

[the number you messaged is no longer available]

Nvm :(

[the number you messaged is no longer available]

 

Keeper of the Bun

I have a ramble, if you can listen.

Go ahead!

So, the problem with people like Stain and Destro is they became villains

And that’s a problem because literally no one listens to villains

Destro?

A social critic who got branded as a villain

Popular among criminals and vigilantes, frowned upon by shining heroes

He argued that quirk use should be a human right. The problem is, he gathered an army of violent supporters, which is the exact opposite of what you want to do to win people over

Quirk use as a human right sounds nice, but society would devolve into chaos if anyone used their quirk any way they wanted at any time

Well of course YOU think that

You get to use your quirk ALL the time

I’m the last person to argue for the innate goodness of humanity, but the fact that the government thinks grown-ass adults can’t figure out how to use their own quirks responsibly is kind of bullshit

That’s… fair I guess

So is that what you consider yourself? A critic of society? A student of these guys looking to carry on their message? Some sort of vigilante?

LOL nope

If I was trying to convince people to think what I think, I wouldn’t be breaking the law

Well then what are you?

No one can figure it out. Iida’s going crazy every time he picks up your case file.

I’m not anything in particular, I just do what I want.

I like to have fun. I like to play games. And I like to challenge myself and challenge the heroes I admire while I do it.

I’m sure the criminal psych-profilers you’re handing these conversations to are having a field day with this

I wouldn’t mind having a look at their work. I’m sure they wouldn’t think I’m anything special though. Just another basket case psychopath who decided he was too good for the law.

Actually Deku…

I’m not giving these conversations to Team Idanten

I haven’t given them anything except the first photo you sent me. And I won’t if you don’t give me a reason to.

…You haven’t?

Wow

That’s dumb

Sorry, I know that’s mean, but what the fuck are you thinking?

Won’t Ingenium get mad when he finds out?

He trusts me

Sure, because all the shippers are right and you’re secretly married

What?!

No we’re not!!!

We’re just…

…Oh

My god

IICHAKO IS REAL!?

DON’T TELL ANYONE

I AM LOSING MY SHIT

OMG ALL THE TSUCHAKO SHIPPERS ARE GONNA BE HEARTBROKEN

Seriously Deku please don’t leak it to the press!

URAVITY

HONEY

WHAT ARE YOU DOING?

HANDING PERSONAL ATTACHMENTS OVER TO A KNOWN VILLIAN?

DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW I COULD USE THIS TO DESTROY YOU!?

TRUST IS TOXIC!

TRUST NO ONE!

I trust a lot of people

Sometimes I trust total strangers

And for now, I guess I’ll have to trust you

NO

BAD URAVITY!

THAT IS THE WORST MISTAKE YOU COULD MAKE AND YOU KNOW IT!

You saw the shit I pulled with Shouto, I WILL use every inch of leverage you give me in a fight!

I don’t want to fight you though!

I like talking to you, and I really really wish you weren’t a villain!

I think you could do a lot of good if you weren’t so evil! In a way, I can see that you want to, even if your logic is all twisted!

Oh Uravity

Uravity no

Don’t wish that. Don’t try to reform me. It won’t work.

I do. I wish you weren’t a villain, because I wish we could be friends.

…Who says we can’t?

You=Villain

Me=Hero

So?

Yeah, we might have to fight each other one day, but who says we can’t be friends?

Life isn’t Hollywood Deku, things don’t work out like that

But what if it did?

You’re crazy

Not denying that but what if it did?

I won’t be able to defeat you if you’re my friend

Sure you can, you’re strong, and as your friend I want you to become stronger. I’d be honored to fight you.

So,

What if it did?

Maybe it started because it’s easier to let walls down through words on a screen instead of talking face to face,

But I’m more real with you than just about anyone else. And I

I appreciate being able to do that.

And I’m not saying the power of friendship will fix everything. I don’t want you trying to “save” me.

But I see no reason why we can’t like each other and still be enemies

Yeah but

I’m not like you Deku

I can’t smile as I punch you in the face

…Okay Uravity-chan

For your sake, I’ll try to stay out of your way

Ochako

Call me Ochako

Ochako-chan (*^^*)

I’m sorry I can’t give you my name.

It’s okay!

Deku kind of sounds like a cute nickname anyways!

It was! Well, kind of.

Ground Zero gave it to me a long time ago. As an insult, of course

Well

From me, it’s a nickname 。^‿^。✿

Awww

You’re too sweet for the likes of me

You’re not half bad at pretending to be sweet

I can’t even tell the difference sometimes (ーー;

 Hey Deku?

Yes Ochako-chan?

I promise that I won’t try to save you

If you promise me you’ll never tell me something you’ve done that I can’t forgive

I can promise that!

Keeping secrets is easy

Don’t even say that…

It makes me wonder…

I wonder all the time, what you’ve done, how you got here

One day, you’ll probably find out

I’m not arrogant enough to think my identity won’t ever be revealed, or I’ll never be caught

Do you want to be caught?

No

Yes

If it was by the right people, yes

If it put an end to all my plans, no

I’ve given up a lot to get where I am right now

I don’t want to sound like I’m tricking you, but I genuinely wish we could meet in person

It’s better this way. You wouldn’t like me if you met me

Hey, don’t tell me who I can and can’t like! -`д´-

Ochako I’m a villain

You’re Deku

People don’t want to admit it, but they love you

I sell them a façade that they love

Doesn’t every hero and celebrity do the same?

No, it’s not the same, I’m a criminal!

People shouldn’t look up to that!

…But they do.

You know the movies where the antagonist outshines everyone

The ones where the antihero steals the show.

The villain that makes the audience cheer for them even as they wait for the heroes to win?

That’s Deku

…you’re pretty great too you know (*^^*)

Thanks!

Wouldn’t mind you taking the Number One spot someday

What, are you encouraging me to beat your precious Ground Zero and Shouto?

Absolutely, those two idiots could do with a humiliating upstart

Lol

Then I guess I’ll have to do my best!!!

Yessss!

I look forward to seeing how high you’ll go. :)

See? This is how you motivate people.

With words, not by blowing up buildings.

Lol but explosions are so much fun

>:(

I am sensing stern disapproval

That you are

Ttyl Ochako-chan!

Ha, that's right, run while you can!

...Thank you, Deku

 

Deku

Ochako-chan?

It’s five in the morning and I don’t know if I can do this anymore.

The thing about organized crime is people who don’t and can’t understand it write cute little plot points to put in comic books and tv shows about ride or die loyalty and life on the run.

They don’t know shit

I thought I could make myself a new kind of criminal empire. One following some loose code of ethics. One with purpose and loyalty.

But the reality is business always comes before ethics and there’s no such thing as loyalty among murderers and thieves.

I let one of my subordinates walk away today. Others in my position would have killed him. I’m sure some think that I should have.

But the fact is I fear betrayal more than I fear prison. I took a gamble that letting him get out no strings attached would secure his loyalty. But I don’t know if I made the right choice. Do my lackeys respect me more or less? How swiftly should I respond with a display of ruthlessness to wash away their doubts?

I see my death coming for me more clearly every day. If not by collapse from within, during a takeover from the next group that’s more powerful, just like how I wiped out everyone else on the map.

But I chose this life.

I chose it and I don’t regret it. I don’t know if I’ll regret it in the end but it’s five-thirty in the god damn morning and I’m staring at the ceiling drowning in this existential whirlpool, contemplating with the fact that the end will come, it will somehow be my fault, and no hero can save me.

So then

I suppose

The only thing left to think about is just how spectacular I can make things when my time is up.

It’s hard to plan for the unexpected but I always manage somehow.

What do you think Ochako? How should the final chapter of Deku’s story go?

Ochako

Ochako please

Get some sleep

You’re being paranoid

I have good reason to be paranoid

Yeah but unless you think someone’s going to knife you tonight I recommend you get some god damned sleep

We’ll talk about this later I promise

I can’t

I can’t sleep

Fine then

I’m calling you

Wait no

[Incoming Call: Ochako-chan]

[Call Rejected]

Answer the phone Deku

I need my helmet

It has my voice distorter

Fine

Ready?

No

[Incoming Call: Ochako-chan]

[Call Accepted]

“Hey.”

“…Hi.”

“Did the big bad crime boss have a nightmare?”

“I’m so sorry just give me a chance to delete all of that, this was stupid, I shouldn’t have let myself ramble like that—.”

“No, hey, listen. You’re right. People who don’t live the kind of life you do can never truly understand what you go through. You and I live in different worlds. But despite that… Despite who you are and what you do I want you to know that I am here for you.

“...It’s. It's such a relief to hear that. But please, don’t make any promises you can’t keep.”

“I know. That’s why I’m not promising you forever. I can’t even promise to be there in person. But despite that I want you to know that for now, today, at five forty-five in the god damned morning you have someone who cares.”

“I don’t deserve your care.”

“Shut up. Stop putting yourself down right this instant.”

“Yes ma’am.”

“Now go cuddle a rabbit until you feel better.”

“Okay… I’ll go find Shimura. Thank you. Good night Ochako.”

“You mean good morning.”

“Crap, is it already getting light outside?”

“Yep.”

“I’m sorry.”

“Don’t worry, it’s fine, you only woke me up fifteen minutes before I’m usually awake anyway. Text me when you feel better, okay?”

“Okay. Take care Ochako. Have a good morning.”

“Good morning to you too Deku. Get some rest.”

 

Ochako hangs up. She stares at the contact name at the top of the screen and wonders for the hundredth time what the hell she’s doing.

Her grip on her phone tightens as she stubbornly reassures herself that what she’s doing is something right. No matter what others may say, it feels right. 

She climbs out of bed, stretches, and prepares herself for another day of hero work.