Today’s the big day.
Fuyumi draws in a deep breath. The air that fills her lungs is refreshing, rather than constricting.
It’s a sign of a new beginning.
She slowly walks around the kitchen, taking it all in. She runs her hands along the smooth counter. It’s so new and so clean .
There’s no sign of a tea kettle spill on the floor, either. There’s no feeling of dread and loss here - rather, it feels like freedom .
Though her feelings regarding her father are complicated, Fuyumi had to admit he did a good job preparing this new house. She slowly glances around the room, smiling.
She’s sure mother will love it.
As she takes another relieved breath, Natsuo’s voice calls out to her from the other room, “Sis, we finished setting up mom’s new room!”
Fuyumi turns towards the kitchen door frame, seeing her younger brother and his girlfriend, Kasumi, walk in, hand-in-hand. Fuyumi smiles at the sight.
In the old house, Natsuo never dared to invite Kasumi over. He avoided the Todoroki Household like the plague. But now…
Another sign of a new beginning.
Fuyumi cheerfully clasps her hands together. “Great! Now all that’s left is to prepare some snacks. We should be able to finish up before I have to go pick up mom.”
Kasumi beams. Her face appears thoughtful as she muses aloud, “Ah, Mrs. Todoroki… I’m so excited to meet her! I hope I’ll make a good impression.”
Natsuo turns to his girlfriend, taking both of her hands in his. “Don’t worry, babe, she’ll love you! I know it!” He sincerely states.
Kasumi’s face flushes. “T-thank you! I’ll do my best!”
Fuyumi looks between the two of them, joy filling her heart. They’re a good match for each other, she thinks.
Natsuo and Kasumi then pull away from each other, giving Fuyumi their undivided attention.
“Alright, let’s work on those snacks!” Natsuo declares, and the three get to work.
As Fuyumi prepares a small plate of fruit and cheese, her mind begins to wander. She’s so excited for tonight. Mother will finally be discharged from the hospital, and she’ll move into the new house with Natsuo and Fuyumi. And then Shouto will be dropped off after school today… And they all can have a nice dinner…
And we can be a family again.
She freezes for a moment, glancing towards the doorway. There, down the hallway, is a room where Touya’s shrine sits. Fuyumi’s smile falters, and a twinge of sadness strikes her heart.
She really wishes her older brother could be here to see this.
Feeling a light tap on her shoulder, Fuyumi turns her head. She’s met with Natsuo’s concerned face.
“Hey, you okay?” he asks, eyebrows furrowed. Kasumi is beside him, giving the older woman an equally concerned look.
Fuyumi nods, her smile returning. “Yeah, let’s just remember to give Touya some food later.”
The couple beams
“Of course!” Natsuo says, and Kasumi cheerfully states she’ll leave Touya some dessert she made.
Once the three finish preparing food for Rei’s arrival, they pile into the living room. There’s still time before Fuyumi has to go pick up Rei, so they sit on the couch and aimlessly chat.
It’s so peaceful and so right. Fuyumi can’t stop smiling the entire time. And tonight was to only get better…
She couldn’t wait.
After a few minutes of chatting passes, Natsuo reaches for the television remote. “Hey, maybe we can find a movie to watch later tonight!”
Fuyumi and Kasumi hum in agreement. As Natsuo begins to browse through the channels, the TV suddenly cuts to the news station. BREAKING NEWS flashes on the screen.
“Oh!” Natsuo startlingly gasps. Fuyumi stares at the screen, confused. What could be happening that’s so important?
A helicopter view of a mansion is shown. It’s crumbling and falling apart at an alarming pace, and the roof is encased in blue flames. On the mansion grounds is a raging battlefield, and Fuyumi can make out a few heroes that are present.
“This is huge!” A voice-over of the newscaster states, “All of Japan’s heroes are raiding a massive villain organization! Reports are coming in that this organization has hundreds of thousands of members, including heroes! There are even rumors the League of Villains is involved!”
Fuyumi glances at her brother and his girlfriend, eyes widening. They look equally surprised.
She turns back to the TV as the news broadcaster continues, “This mission the heroes are carrying out was highly confidential, so when we got anonymous reports of this taking place, we came as quick as we could!”
The camera pans across the battlefield, and Fuyumi’s stomach drops when she recognizes a few of Shouto’s classmates amidst the chaos.
“Oh, U.A. students are here too!” The news broadcaster announces, solidifying Fuyumi’s fear.
She looks back at Natsuo, feeling sick. Her brother’s face is pale. Kasumi sits beside him, unable to tear worried eyes from the screen.
“Natsuo, is Shouto-” Fuyumi chokes. Her face twists with anxiety.
“I don’t know,” Natsuo replies. He stares directly at the TV, unable to meet his sister’s gaze, “I don’t know.”
Fuyumi turns her attention back to the news. She grips her shirt so hard her knuckles turn white.
“We don’t know much about this situation yet, given how top-secret it was, but we have reports th-”
A loud BOOM suddenly cuts the broadcaster off. The camera quickly cuts towards the sound, revealing two figures flying from the burning roof. The camera shakily zooms in. The image is blurry for a second, but once it focuses, a gasp is forced from Fuyumi’s lips.
The Number Two Hero, Hawks, is being supported by one of Shouto’s classmates. The hero is bloodied and has blistering burns littering his skin. Shouto’s classmate attempts to shield Hawks with his quirk. As the two land on the ground, the news broadcaster begins to speak.
“Number Two Hero Hawks is also here! And-”
Another BOOM interrupts them. In a flash of blue fire, the League of Villains’ Dabi appears on screen. He lands a few feet away from Hawks and Shouto’s classmate. Flames flare around the three, and Fuyumi realizes Dabi has intent to kill.
Her grip on her shirt tightens.
The news broadcaster hastily states, “W-we should be able to pick up sound in just a moment, since things are starting to unfold.”
Dabi charges forward, hands ablaze. Shouto’s classmate quickly leaps out of the way, attempting to use his quirk to shield Hawks from the flames.
As Fuyumi takes in the scene, she can’t help but notice how panicked Dabi looks. His movements are erratic, and his eyes remind her of a deer caught in headlights. It’s a stark contrast to his crazed expression from months ago - when he tried to kill Endeavor and Hawks on live television.
Sounds of the fight suddenly pours in from the TV’s speakers.
“ - Leave Tokoyami out of this, Dabi,” Hawks rasps out, his voice sounding pained. He leans against Shouto’s classmate - Tokoyami - as he glares at the villain.
“Shut up! I’ll do whatever it takes to kill you!” Dabi snaps, lunging forward once more. Fuyumi cries out as Tokoyami avoids the attack in the nick of time. She sees the flames graze Tokoyami’s arm, causing him to wince.
He and Hawks land a few yards away from the villain. As Tokoyami stares at the villain, prepared for anything, Hawks notices the camera focused on them. He glances up at it, and Fuyumi can practically see an idea light up in his eyes.
“Oh? Is it because of what you told me?” Hawks asks, gaze turning back to Dabi. The villain casts a quick glance to the camera, becoming more enraged and -
A sudden blast of azure shoots towards the camera. Screams of terror from the news crew are heard before Hawks suddenly leaps in front of the camera, taking most of the fire. More burns blister on his skin, causing him to cry out in anguish.
Though Hawks took most of the attack, the camera didn’t come out unscathed. The image starts to become burned and blurry at the edges. Hawks gives it a worried look - he can tell the camera’s life is running out of time.
“Hawks!” Tokoyami’s surprised voice is barely heard off-screen.
The hero in question casts a quick glance off-camera. “Get out of here Tokoyami. This is my fight.”
Dabi growls, hand alighting in fire once more. “You piece of shit hero, I swear if you-”
The villain cuts himself off, jumping forward. A rain of fire starts to come down upon Hawks, who manages to escape most of it. Even so, more blood runs down his skin - as if the life were slowly draining out of him.
Much like Hawks, the camera could only handle so much more. The image is rapidly becoming more blurry. Despite its state, Fuyumi is able to see Hawks cough up crimson.
As Dabi readies another attack - this time aiming for both Hawks and the camera - the Number Two Hero says something that sends a chill straight to Fuyumi’s core.
“Do your worst, Todoroki Touya. ”
Dabi’s enraged cry is heard before the screen erupts in azure flames. The connection is then severed, causing the TV screen to switch to a haunting static.
The static is the only sound that fills the room. Fuyumi, Natsuo, and Kasumi sit in silence.
Fuyumi can’t bring herself to look away from the TV screen. Her mouth is agape, and her stomach coils painfully. The grip on her shirt reaches her skin, causing her nails to dig into her abdomen. Tears slowly start to fill her eyes.
“There’s no way,” she finds herself muttering, “There’s no way.”
“Sis-” Natsuo’s strangled voice tries to call out for her, but an abrupt ringing fills the room. Fuyumi jumps, hardly registering the buzzing in her pocket.
Ah, it’s her phone.
She shakily reaches for it. Through tears, she stares down at the screen. A reminder is alerting her.
Fuyumi’s heart pounds in her chest as the words 'Time to pick up mom!' glare at her.