Disclaimer: Nah, I'm just a poor college student. I'd be richer if I owned MHA.
Izuku hadn't been there when the Shinsou family first arrived in their neighborhood. He had been out all day trailing after a Desutegoro in his fight against a group of bank robbers. Once that fight ended he had spent several more hours chasing after rumors of an All Might sighting which he found to be false, much to his disappointment. He trudged home near dusk exhausted but happy enough that he managed to take so many notes about Desutegoro and the villains he had been fighting.
His mother had dragged him over to the apartment next door the very next day practically vibrating with the hope that the new neighbor boy might be Izuku's friend.
He didn't get to meet their son, but he did like the elder Shinsou's. Shinsou Aiko was a beautiful woman with long blue hair that had small white flowers tangled in it and bright bluish purple eyes. She was slender and dainty and definitely resembled the flowers she could control with her quirk. He had made a fool of himself blabbering about her quirk and how useful and interesting it was, but she luckily didn't take offense. Her husband even laughed and ruffled his hair when he started apologizing once he realized what he had done. He was a mammoth of a man, towering over all of them at 6'4''. Izuku would have never pegged him as a salaryman if he hadn't specifically told them so. He certainly didn't have the look of one and he spoke very gently, his cocoa eyes warm when he chatted with Izuku's mother. He had a warm laugh that echoed slightly from his quirk. Izuku liked them and almost looked forward to meeting their son. But, he never did.
Izuku cast a side glance at the boy sitting next to him.
He must have inherited his father's height since he was taller than the rest of the class, but everything else was definitely his mother from the blue-purple hair and eyes to the pale skin and delicate hands. Though his hair was wilder that Kacchans and he had some pretty deep bags under his eyes.
Izuku wondered if he inherited his mother's quirk as well.
Then again, he glanced around the class. Most of the students were looking at Shinsou rather than paying attention. They whispered behind their hands and tried to catch the boy's attention to no avail. Even Kacchan was eyeing the new kid with a narrowed eyed look. He probably wouldn't get the chance to talk to him during school.
He turned back to his notebook tinkering with the different combination of quirks from parents. He had never put much thought in it before since he focused heavily on hero quirks, but if he thought about it certain quirks tend to be passed down from parent to child because they were tied intrinsically into a person's DNA; their genetics. Like genetics, there were endless possibilities tied to either side of the family including recessive traits that could crop up under certain circumstances. Now that he thought of it there was a large possibility that his own quirklessness was a byproduct of a recessive trait from his parents. Or maybe it was a genetic mutation? That was another possibility that didn't necessarily follow the parent's genetics. Maybe-
The eraser hit him right between the eyes. A result of repeated practice.
"Shut-up Midoriya, you're freaking out the new guy." His teacher scowled at him, while the rest of the class snickered.
Izuku cringed slightly and glanced to his right. Shinsou didn't look very freaked out, but it was hard to tell since the boy looked perpetually on the verge of falling asleep. His neighbor simply raised an eyebrow at him before turning back to the front of the class. He ducked his head and mumbled an apology. As the class continued, he tried to keep his thoughts in his head. It was difficult and his bottom lip hurt from biting it so hard, but he managed not to lose himself again in his own thoughts.
He hoped Shinsou wouldn't think he was super weird and wouldn't talk to him now.
The day seemed to drag on slower than normal, however, lunch eventually came. As he pulled out his bento he turned to try and see if he could talk to Shinsou some more only to find a large group already forming around the boy. Kacchan had plopped himself down at the desk in front of Shinsou sitting backward in the chair with his arms folded loosely over the back. Izuku glanced around for the original occupant and found the boy cowering in the corner glaring spitefully at Kacchan.
"So, what's your quirk?" Kaccchan got right down to business. "Everyone else says it when they introduce themselves, but you didn't. So, what is it?"
Izuku winced slightly. Apparently, Kacchan was feeling a bit territorial.
Shinsou didn't seem to pick up on Kacchan's hostility or simply ignored it since he merely raised his eyebrow at the blond and turned back to his own bento. Despite his sudden spike in fear over what Kacchan might do to the boy after the blatant dismissal he could help but notice the faint twitch of his right eye and the way his shoulders slouched slightly.
Kacchan stole his attention with a small explosion.
"I was talking to you." The blond growled, his sparking hand held up threateningly.
Shinsou's expression didn't change as he glanced back up at Kacchan.
"My quirk is none of your business."
"Kacchan, don't!" He leaped to his feet pushing Kacchan's shoulders back in a vain attempt to stop the other boy from lunging forward to attack Shinsou.
Kacchan's face was twisted angrily until his eyes landed on Izuku and suddenly he was leaning against the desk and smirking. Izuku stepped back in confusion, his hands still raised.
"So, are you like Deku then? A shitty, quirkless loser?"
Well, there went his chance of making friends with Shinsou. He knew it would come up eventually, but he didn't want to advertise it immediately. Judging by Kacchan's smirk he knew exactly what Izuku was thinking. Shinsou blinked slowly at him for a moment, before turning back to Kacchan.
"No, I'm not quirkless."
"Then what is your shitty quirk?" Kacchan's smirk fell into another scowl. Izuku could tell Shinsou's blank expression was irritating him immensely. "It must be shitty if you refused to fucking tell."
"Come on, it can't be too bad." One of Izuku's classmates spoke up. "The only one with a good quirk in this school is Bakugou."
"It's none of your business," Shinsou repeated before turning back to his food.
Kacchan's friends dragged him away to prevent a full-blown fight, but even after he was gone Shinsou refused to answer any other questions from curious classmates. Izuku opened and closed his mouth a few times, before sitting back down and eating his own food. The rest of school seemed to go by much faster as Izuku stared miserably at the teacher only barely paying attention.
When the bell rang he slowly put his things away keeping an eye on Kacchan as the boy stormed out of the room with his friends trailing behind as usual. Normally he'd tag along with them or go out looking for a hero fight to watch, but today he just wanted to go home.
Izuku jerked his head up and stared wide-eyed at Shinsou. The boy scratched the back of his head and looked to the side before turning back to him.
"Is true you don't have a quirk?"
Izuku winced and looked down at his shoes. "Y-yeah."
Izuku didn't look when he heard Shinsou walk away. He could feel the blood rushing to his face in a shameful blush.
"Hey, Midoriya was it? Are you coming?"
His head jerked up for the second time. Shinsou was standing a little awkwardly at the door to the classroom. The other students still hanging around were whispering to one another eyeing the exchange with interest. Shinsou shuffled his feet.
"We live next door, so I thought…"
That seemed to kick-start his brain.
"Right! Live next door. So we go home the same way! Um. Right, I'm definitely coming!" Izuku wasn't sure how much of that babbled response was understandable, but Shinsou didn't seem irritated like Kacchan was when Izuku got too excited so he figured the boy either understood or was simply ignoring it.
He shoved the rest of his stuff in his backpack and charged towards the door with a wide grin, nearly running into Shinsou in his haste.
"Walking isn't that exciting," Shinsou muttered.
"But, I've never walked home with anyone before." He chirped back. He used to follow Kacchan home, but then Kacchan started taking a different route and no one else lived near him.
Izuku's shifted his gaze to the side. As soon as people found out about his quirklessness they tended to avoid him.
"Why would they avoid you? It's not like you can do anything horrible to them."
He froze. Did he say that out loud?
"Yeah." Shinsou lips twitch up in a tiny smirk.
He looked down at his shoes. While he was happy Shinsou didn't seem to care about him being quirkless, there was something to his response that seemed off. Izuku didn't know what it was, but the way he said 'horrible'…He shrugged it off for the time being and tried to think of what to talk about on their way home. As they walked Izuku considered asking him about his quirk, but decided against it. Instead, he started chatting nervously about heroes.
"…and there is still debate on whether Snipe has extremely good aim separate from his quirk or because of his quirk. In any case, I think he's kind of underrated. He gets a bit of a bad rep for using guns when so many other superheroes just use their quirk, but some of their quirks are just as dangerous and regardless of whether he's just good at aiming or uses his homing quirk, he's never seriously injured someone. Which not all heroes can actually claim, I mean there was that incident with Endeaver last spring. Even if that guy was a villain those burns were pretty severe…and where was I?"
He blinked and turned to Shinsou, who had been silent throughout his whole ramble.
"Oh, I'm sorry! I've just been babbling away. I just, well I sometimes get carried away talking about heroes. Oh gosh, you probably think I'm lame now." Izuku kicked a stray pebble. If Shinsou wasn't scared away by his quirklessness than his nerdiness (as Kacchan call it) would definitely do the trick.
"No, it's fine." There was a hint of amusement in his voice. "My dad's obsessed with heroes too. He tends to go on long rants whenever there's a big fight on tv. For warning, if you hear shouting in the future it's probably him upset over how a hero was handling a situation. He's a major backseat hero."
He blinked slowly at the boy. "Wow, that's the most you've said today."
Shinsou turned away and scratched the back of his head a little harshly. If Izuku tilted his head he could see a blush stretching to his ears. He felt a small grin tug at his own lips. He glanced down the road. They were almost home. He could see the apartment building in the distance.
"Uh, well, anyway. So, your dad likes heroes. Um, who's your favorite hero?"
Shinsou glanced at him before shrugging. "Eraserhead."
"Ohh he's an awesome hero! Not much is known about him since he doesn't like the publicity but his quirk is super cool and he takes care of a lot of the small time villains that most big-time heroes don't bother with 'cause there's not much fame involved. There was some debate on how he's a borderline vigilante due to some of his rescues, the way he sometimes doesn't wait for permission to enter certain situations and his dislike of the media-"
"That's stupid. It's probably just a rumor from some of the journalists he refused to give an interview to. Or maybe some of the heroes who refused to work with him because of his quirk." Shinsou butted in looking more engaged than Izuku had seen him yet.
He grinned and nodded fiercely.
"That's right! He got his hero license fair and square and he helps a whole bunch of people even if he's not as showy as some of the other heroes. Did you know that he works at U.A.? I would love to have him as a teacher!"
Shinsou gave a small nod and Izuku's grin widened.
"Do you want to be a hero too? I want to be a hero." He hesitated slightly, waiting for the usual rebuttal.
But, it never came.
"Yeah…I want to be a hero." Shinsou replied looking away again.
It looked like he was going to say more, but he hesitated as well. They descended into silence for a few minutes.
"Well, we're back home." They stopped in front of Shinsou's door.
Izuku fidgeted a moment, wondering how exactly break off the conversation. He never did this before. Should he just say bye and walk away. Or maybe he should invite him over. But he might be tired since it was his first day and he had to deal with that confrontation with Kacchan. Also, he might not actually want to hang out with Izuku outside of school and walking home. Maybe he was just humoring him by walking home with him. Some people did sometimes pity him and treated him like he was invalid when they learned that he was quirkless.
"Hey, it's nothing like that." Shinsou waved his hand in front of his face jerking Izuku out of his thoughts. "You don't have much of a brain to mouth filter do you?"
Izuku blushed and shuffled his feet. "Sorry."
"It's fine." Shinsou glanced at his house. "Uh, you like heroes…do you want to see my dad's collection?"
"Collection?" He asked slowly his mind trying to catch up with this turn of events.
"Yeah, he has a lot of hero stuff. Figurines, posters and other merchandise. Apparently, some of it is really rare. He's got one of the first All Might figurines that was sold, there's only-"
"Fifteen!" Izuku shouted excitedly. "There's only fifteen! He has one?! That's amazing let me tell my mom where I'm at and I'll come right over!"
Shinsou's lips twitched slightly. "Alright."
They spent several hours ogling Mr. Shinsou's collect and Shinsou's own folder of hard to find videos of Eraserhead with frequent interruptions from Ms. Shinsou who seemed almost as ecstatic as his mother was when he told her he was going over to the Shinsou household. When Mr. Shinsou got home Izuku had the most engaging conversation about heroes and their quirks than he ever had with anyone else.
He awkwardly turned down a dinner invitation and nearly skipped back to his home, only to be accosted by his teary-eyed mother who wanted to know absolutely everything about his visit, gushing on and on about how she was so happy her little Izuku made a friend.
He wasn't sure if that was true, but he didn't correct her. After all, he wasn't quite sure what a friend was if he was being completely honest with himself. He had thought that Kacchan was his friend when they were kids, but things had changed drastically since then. Ever since his quirklessness became known by the kids in his class no one his age really talked to him outside of mocking or pitying him.
Maybe his mom was right and they could be friends. Even if he didn't quite know what that entailed, he hoped he got to talk to Shinsou more.
The next morning he found Shinsou standing awkwardly in front of his door looking like he had been preparing to knock. Izuku stared. Shinsou looked away scratching at the back of his head muttering something about his mother insisting that they walk to school together since they lived next door. Izuku didn't pay much attention to it, he was just too ecstatic that Shinsou didn't change his mind about talking to him during the night.
Before he knew it a week went by in a similar manner. Shinsou and him would walk to and from school chatting about anything that caught their interest. Or, at least, Izuku would chat and Shinsou would listen. Izuku tried multiple times to get him to talk more, but the other boy didn't seem to be much of a talker.
Izuku should have known things would end badly.
He should have noticed Kacchan's frown getting deeper and his glare sharper.
But, he was so excited to have a potential friend that he remained oblivious.
That was until Kacchan was in Shinsou's face again after class Monday afternoon. Kacchan and his friends had caught them on their way home under an overpass.
"I was right, wasn't I? You're just another quirkless little shit. That's why you're hanging out with Deku, eh?" The hand holding onto the front of Shinou's uniform was steaming. "Two shitty birds flocking together."
Izuku wasn't sure how he managed it, but Shinsou's face was as blank as ever.
"Kacchan no!" Izuku shot up tugging at the arm that was now sparking. It was a miracle Shinsou's uniform hadn't caught fire yet.
"Fuck off Deku!" Kacchan snapped his other hand jerked out sending him flying with a small explosion.
He was used to this, though, and merely raised his arms to block his face and tried his best not to trip over his feet and fall. He hit the wall pretty hard and his vision blurred for a second, but it wasn't as bad as some of his fights with Kacchan ended up. He lowered his hands down ready to charge in again. Kacchan saw him coming, however, and let off another explosion sending him flying back on his butt.
"You know what? Fine. You want to know my quirk?"
Izuku sat up blinking away stars. Something was wrong. Shinsou's voice was soft, lacking any anger that one would expect him to have in this situation. Focusing on his face, Izuku noticed the resigned expression. Warning bells went off in his head.
Of course, Kacchan being Kacchan didn't notice any of this.
"Yea-" His voice cut off with a choke.
Izuku's eye's widened as he watched Kacchan's face went blank. His hands dropped and the explosions sparking at his fingertips faded.
"Bakugou?" One of his friends asked cautiously.
The vacant smile on his face was freaking everyone out.
Everyone except for Shinsou.
"Go home Bakugou." He ordered calmly. "Don't talk to or mess with anyone on your way home."
Without a word Kacchan marched away, his movements awkwardly stiff.
"What the hell did you do to him?!" Kacchan's friend exclaimed his fingers stretching out like he was going to strike at Shinsou, but he flinched back when Shinsou looked at him.
"He wanted to know my quirk. I showed him." Shinsou replied blandly. "My quirk is brainwashing."
The two glanced at each other with wide eyes before backing away slowly and running. Izuku shook his head. They pretended to be tough when Kacchan was around, but apparently, they weren't so brave on their own. He turned to Shinsou with a smile, but he was already picking up his bag and walking away.
"Hey! Wait up!" He hopped to his feet wincing as his vision blurred again. Maybe he hit his head a harder than he thought on the wall. He blinked away the spots and chased after the purple haired boy. "That was so cool! I had no idea that kind of quirk was even a thing!"
Shinsou slowed to a halt but didn't turn towards him.
"You're not scared of me? Of what I can do?"
Izuku tilted his head to the side in confusion. "What? No way, why would I be?"
Shinsou turned slowly his eyebrows pulled together as he frowned at him.
"I can control your mind just by asking you a question…"
Izuku grinned. "So it's activated verbally? I thought it might be based on eye contact. So is it a specific question or maybe it's the inflection of your voice? Kacchan started to answer before his face went blank is there some kind of delay? Ooh, it's so cool. Much cooler than Kacchan's explosions! I bet you'd make an awesome hero. You'd have the villains behind bars before they knew what hit them! And-"
He paused when he noticed Shinsou's shoulders shaking. He had wrapped his arms around himself and his head was lowered as his shoulders shook minutely. Izuku waved his hands around in distress.
Was he crying?! Did he say something bad? He let his mouth get away from him again, didn't he?
"Shinsou?" He asked hesitantly.
Shinsou's shoulders shook some more and he let out a snort.
Apparently, the snort opened all of the floodgates because suddenly Shinsou was laughing helplessly as Izuku stood there awkwardly wondering what he said that was so funny. He hadn't seen him laugh before, then again he had only known him for a week. After a minute Shinsou calmed down, taking deep breaths to get his heart rate back to normal.
"Hey, just call me Hitoshi."
Izuku blinked twice before a grin made its way across his face.
"Ok! Call me Izuku then!"
Was this what a friend was like?
Because he definitely wanted to hold onto the bubbly feeling rising in his chest.
Can we talk about how hard it is to write awkward dialogue? Cause it was really difficult to write these dorky, awkward boys.
Also, "Kacchan no!", is Izuku's catchphrase. No one can tell me otherwise.
Anyway, thank you guys for the reviews and support. This was just a little brainchild from season two that I thought might be interesting to post and see what people thought of it.