Shoto was sitting at Momo's bedside on an uncomfortable chair. Both hands clutching her right hand. Why did it have to come this far? Before the battle, they’ve gotten into a huge fight, he couldn’t remember what it was about, something trivial really. Both of them had been extremely on edge for the past days, not knowing when the next attack would follow. People going missing on missions and patrol, never knowing if it was the last time you might see one of your friends. Every time one of his friends was sent on a mission, there was a tense atmosphere, and tight smiles were shared before they separated. It’s not like they didn’t want to fight for justice and peace, but as of now, the situation was a bitter one. They had lost many allies, and many of whom were remarkably powerful and essential to their victory.
The ones that were left behind by their partners often hid their pain and were the first ones to volunteer when it came to potential deadly missions. It was like they’ve lost their will to live. They ran from their grief and misery, hoping that the thrill and adrenalin of missions would cover the pain and make them forget. Even if it was only for a moment, they craved the release.
His prime example for this destructive behaviour was Bakugou. The blond made it his personal mission to scare everyone away who even dared to suggest that he was in any way hurting or suffering. The facade he tried to maintain was obvious to everyone, but they all quickly learned that they weren’t doing any good with pushing the subject. Part of Shoto wanted to help him, but he knew that he was not the right person to do so.
Bakugou was on patrol with Kirishima when the latter was killed in an ambush. They weren’t expecting it, as it was in an area that was moderately safe and had let their guard down. The villains outnumber them, and it was clear that they couldn’t hope to win the fight alone. They had called for backup, but when it arrived Kirishima had already been badly hurt. Bakugou had been struggling with keeping them away from Kirishima and at the same time tried to knock them out. Even though the two of them had been rushed to the hospital right after, Kirishima had already lost too much blood and passed away shortly.
It was evident that Bakugou was blaming himself for the death of his best friend. They both had made an error that day, and Kirishima was the one paying for it with his life. Shoto had asked Midoriya how Bakugou had reacted to the news since he was one of the people present. The green-haired man had a dark look on his face and gave him a vague answer and Shoto decided to not press the matter more. Everybody knew that Bakugou and Kirishima had become very close, and it was fairly obvious that they both had romantic feelings for one another. Shoto didn’t know if they ever acted on them, but he strongly suspected that the two of them probably hadn't even noticed. Not that he was one to judge in that department anyway, he thought
Bakugou was not the only one who was crushed by the death of a loved one. He was not the only one, many of his friends had become more and more anxious after Kirishimas death. Shoto had been shocked when the news reached him. He couldn’t quite believe that of all people Kirishima was the first to pass on. He might not have been his closest friend, but he still appreciated the crimson-haired hero. He had been a good friend to Shoto and Momo, and when the two of them lay in bed that night, they clung to each other. They were afraid that it might be the last time they were allowed to lay next to each other and feel the other person's warmth pressed against them. Kirishimas death had brought things into a different perspective. They knew that they were living in dangerous times, but now they knew just how quickly they could lose somebody.
Shoto knew that it was wishful and irrational to think that they would all make it out of it alive. Heck, he didn’t even know if they could win. They were heroes, and they would die as such before they would let the villains win, but after he saw just how much more powerful the League had gotten, and how they just seemed to lose allies left and right, he couldn’t say that things were looking too bright.
Shoto felt guilty when he thought about how much this situation had come to rest on Midoriya's shoulders. The one for all user had taken over large parts of the organisation of mission and was always seen on the front lines, never taking a break. He was truly the key to upholding their motivation and faith. Shoto was extremely grateful for his best friend, for he had given him encouraging smiles and the occasional hug of reassurance. Shoto wanted to believe him with everything he got when he told him that everything was going to work out, but there was just a small seed of doubt in his heart, and he was terrified of it growing.
Especially right now, sitting at the side of Momo’s hospital bed, he felt the hope slowly beginning to crumble. She had gotten badly injured by a falling piece of a wall when some villain had burst a wave of pure energy into a building and it had collapsed. He clenched her hand, thinking about her lifeless body lying near him, but not being able to reach her due to being involved in a fight with a very powerful villain. He couldn’t recall anything else about the fight, only his strong desire to get to Momo and the fear of losing her. He didn’t know what he would do without her. She meant the world to him and thinking about a world without her in it was ripping at his heart, threatening to tear it apart. He brought her hand to his mouth and kissed the ring on her finger tenderly, sending a silent prayer to anyone listening. If he were to lose her, he wouldn’t survive it.
All he ever wanted was to keep the ones he loved safe, and now he was about to lose the person he loved most, and he didn’t know how he could possibly cope with it.