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?
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?
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?
Nonono oh god no, you’d make a terrible villain!
But you do make a very good hero!
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?
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! (*^^*)
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
### ### ####
…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.
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?
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:
…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.
I usually name my rabbits after pro heroes.
Oh I’ve got it!
…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?
Thanks for picking out the name, I’ve been struggling all week.
Np! I’m glad I could
Can you send pictures of the rest of your bunnies?
I’d be happy to!
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?
Aww, I like his little red ribbon.
Next is All Might, are you prepared?
Ok I’m ready
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?
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.
Gtg for now, villain duty calls
What kind of villain duty?
(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!
Thank you for telling me about your adorable bunnies.
*Aggressive Arm Chopping*
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
I’ll be okay Iida, I can handle Deku.
Did you know he has pet bunnies?
Yeah five of them
Well four going on five
They’re really cute
…This is what you talk to a wanted criminal about.
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?
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.
Keeper of the Bun
I have a question.
Are you a follower of Stain?
Yaaay! Floaty waifu returns!!!
The FUCK? ಠ_ಠ
As for Stain, 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
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 don’t want to name any names though, you might get in the way
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…
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
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
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
I found a puppers
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!
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. (*^^*)
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…
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.
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.
…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?
### ### #####
[Message From: Unknown Number]
[the number you messaged is no longer available]
[the number you messaged is no longer available]
[the number you messaged is no longer available]
Keeper of the Bun
I have a ramble, if you can listen.
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
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?
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.
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.
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
No we’re not!!!
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!
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
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!
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?
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?
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.
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
I’m not like you Deku
I can’t smile as I punch you in the face
For your sake, I’ll try to stay out of your way
Call me Ochako
I’m sorry I can’t give you my name.
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
From me, it’s a nickname ｡^‿^｡✿
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;
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?
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
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?
…you’re pretty great too you know (*^^*)
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
Then I guess I’ll have to do my best!!!
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
Ha, that's right, run while you can!
...Thank you, Deku
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.
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?
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 sleep
I’m calling you
[Incoming Call: Ochako-chan]
Answer the phone Deku
I need my helmet
It has my voice distorter
[Incoming Call: Ochako-chan]
“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.”
“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?”
“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.