Title: My Carol Academia
Disclaimer: With a myriad of writers, artists, and editors, actual rights are a nightmare when you go near a comic book universe. Suffice it to say that Marvel Entertainment LLC owns all of the property printed in their comics, along with the television and movie adaptations of said same property. Compared to that, the ownership of My Hero Academia is relatively simple: the entire thing belongs to Kōhei Horikoshi. Not mine, don't sue, and so forth and so on.
Summary: Carol Danvers manages to keep extraordinarily busy helping ensure the peace on the hundreds of worlds in the Milky Way galaxy that don't have the Avengers to watch over them. The last thing she needs is to find herself pulled through a rift back to Earth... and it's not her Earth.
Joe's Note: I originally conceived this back when we were seeing Spider-Man: Far From Home commercials that played up the multiversal aspects of the story. While the movie was a bit of a disappointment on that front - and that's as much as I'll say to avoid spoiling people who haven't seen it - the idea of Blip-related rifts opening in space/time stayed with me and... well, this story was born. I actually played with ideas for a half-dozen different Marvel characters falling through the rift before deciding that Carol was a bit more flexible in terms of characterization and personality because we know comparatively little about her. Haven't decided whether or not there will be any shipping in this, although I'm kinda partial to Carol and Himiko for some odd reason...
Dedications & Thanks: To Nicholas, Howard, Jade, Alexander, Tibor, Alonsis2, Daniel, Clark, Adrien, erlking, ridillin, Haematite, Charles, Jacky, Edward, Andrew, Roofcrawler, Wil, PbookR, Samuel, Mikey, Beverly, Daniel, Charles, Crygon20, Subtle, Christopher, Stephen, Fablesrogue, Morgan, Joseph, Jason, RileyWestfall, bloodylord, Marc, Ziryo, Chris, George, Koby, William, Devin, JJbelle, David, Gavin, TheTenthAncestor, Lookshy, Mauday, John, Roman, Warren, and Jess for sponsoring me on , and making it easier for me to spend more of my time writing.
...and then she was through the strange, rippling red rift and could breathe again, sucking in great gasps of oxygen as her trembling body drifted through the air. While she didn't strictly need it anymore, she definitely wasn't going to turn it down... and it did help put a finger on her current location. She was on a planet. Somewhere. Which she hadn't been mere moments before. Then Carol Danvers opened her eyes, whipping her head back and forth as she took in her surroundings. She was... back on Earth?
Maybe not. She'd visited plenty of inhabited planets over the course of the past thirty years, and a striking number of them bore some degree of resemblance to Earth. There were only so many ways a civilization could build a building, after all. But she definitely wasn't in deep space anymore, on her way to visit the Skrull on their new homeworld. Which was where she was supposed to be. Which in turn made her current location concerning.
The past year or so after the reversal of Thanos's Snap and the decisive battle against the Titan's time-displaced alter ego had been strangely quiet. Nature supposedly abhorred a vacuum and so Carol would have thought that someone - or multiple weaker someones - would have tried to step into the void created by Thanos's defeat, but the Milky Way galaxy had seemed largely content to just take a breather and recover from what happened. The only real cause for concern had been the appearance of strange rifts in space/time, an unforeseen side effect of using all six of the Infinity Stones together twice in rapid succession. Carol hadn't really paid the discussions of them any mind, figuring that they were a problem for more terrestrial heroes and the civilians they protected.
An explosion off to her left drew Carol's attention and she raised an eyebrow. While there was always a chance that it was some sort of cultural celebration like that Exploding Hammer Festival that she and Maria had attended in San Juan de la Vega... generally speaking, explosions were a sign that something bad was happening. And wherever she was - and for whatever reason - Carol wasn't about to pass up the chance to help people in their hour of need.
Calling forth her power enough to sheathe herself in a corona of golden energy, Carol sailed through the air toward the site of the explosions, eyes narrowing as she grew close enough to the ground to start picking out signage and advertisements. Whether she was on Earth or another inhabited planet, they definitely didn't speak English or Kree. Summoning the seldom-used cowl of her Starforce armor, she frowned as the HUD informed her that there was a positive match for a language on Planet C-35 and began translating things for her. So she was back on Earth, albeit a Japanese-speaking portion of it. Curiouser and curiouser.
Another massive explosion rocked what her HUD informed her was the Tatooin Shopping district, sending roiling clouds of oily black smoke billowing skyward as she decelerated and began drifting over the rooftops. Her eyes swept back and forth quickly as she flew, trying to pin down the source of the chaos. Unfortunately, the smoke was already thick and terrified citizens were running every which way in the chaos, making it harder to... there was a bright pop of light, and Carol's eyes narrowed. There! Dropping down into the artificial canyon between two buildings, she tilted her head to the side as she observed the scene in front of her.
There was a slime monster. There was a slime monster trying to eat a teenage boy, or at the very least envelop or trap him within its body. A slime monster doing something to a teenage boy. Carol counted three men in ridiculous outfits facing off against the slime monster, a fourth doing his best to fight the fires that had sprung up around the area, and... a giant woman with a great ass who seemed to be unable to reach the battle? So possibly someone with Scott's powers but far less experience and control, someone who could shoot water, and three more heroes whose powers were unknown but clearly not up to the task of subduing the slime monster. Alright. She could work with that.
Angling herself downward, Carol drew closer to the confrontation as she evaluated her options, forming and discarding plans as she watched the other heroes dodge thick tendrils of slime. At the risk of being arrogant, there was no way this monster could possibly hit as hard as Thanos, and she'd taken him on in his prime. With multiple Infinity Stones under his command, even. She obviously couldn't punch him into submission, she quickly realized, watching the bulky blue-clad hero try at that tactic and fail miserably. Thankfully, her prodigious strength wasn't the only power she had at her disposal.
"It's no use! There's no one who can take care of this at the scene right now!"
"All we can do is wait for someone with a more suitable Quirk."
Assuming her translator was doing its job adequately, that was as good a cue as any for her to make her entrance. And then a green-haired teen - green? - in a uniform that matched the hostage broke free of the crowd, charging toward the tableau and hastening the need for her to get involve. Dropping down into the alley between the hapless heroes and their opponent, Carol reached out and deftly grabbed the greenette around the waist, spinning and redirecting his charging form back where it had come from. "Appreciate the enthusiasm, kid, but let the heroes handle this one."
Carol paused for a moment, staring off into space as the kid went stumbling back into the crowd. There was something wrong... with her voice. And... she glanced down. Her arms. And legs. Her body wasn't right. The rift had done more to her than just transport her back to Earth. Wait. Focus, she decided. Defeat the villain now. Take stock of herself later. Figuring out what was going on with her body could wait. Saving the poor boy in the slime monster's clutches couldn't.
Turning back to face her new opponent, Carol dropped to one knee and brought both of her arms up as she lined up her shots. Her tongue poked out of the corner of her mouth as she concentrated, brow furrowing. Too close together and she would blast the unlucky boy whose only sin was to have been in the wrong place at the wrong time and been taken hostage. Too far apart and she would just shave off the edges of the slime monster and leave him intact enough to remain a threat. And then she fired, unleashing twin barrages of photonic energy at the slime monster. "Fire in the hole!"
The impact was all that she'd hoped for and more. The monster let out a bellow of pain as its body mass warped and then disintegrated under the barrage, causing it to recoil out of instinct and release the teenager it had been holding. Launching herself forward, Carol grabbed the boy's hand and repeated the same maneuver that she'd used on the wannabe hero, tossing the hostage in the direction of her fellow heroes even as she used her free hand to unleash a followup photon blast that gouged another great chunk out of the monster's body mass. And then for good measure, she took a page from Bruce Banner's book and brought her hands together in a titanic clap, sending a wave of compressed air racing forward that slammed into the slime monster's body mass and splattered what remained of it across the alley walls.
That was... about as difficult as Carol had expected, which was to say not very. She watched the slime drip down the walls for a few seconds, wanting to make sure that it wasn't attempting to reconstitute itself for another attack, before letting out a sigh and turning to face the hostage and her fellow heroes. Then she tilted her head back a bit, peering up at the merrily burning buildings on either side of her. "We should probably get somebody to do something about that, huh?" The four people in front of her just stared at her uncomprehendingly, and Carol rolled her eyes before tapping at the control screen, engaging the translation capabilities of her armor. "I said, we should probably get somebody to do something about that, huh? You know, before the buildings burn down? Or the fire spreads to other buildings?"
Rather than displaying the sort of discipline and competence that Carol had come to expect from working with the Avengers and their various allies, the three heroes who weren't already actively fighting the fire continued to stand there and stare at her. Finally, just as Carol was about to turn away and try to aid the firefighter-themed hero herself, the giant woman shrank herself down and made her way over to join them. "Not that I mind a little bit more girl power, but I don't recognize you. Not that I'm a hero otaku or anything, but I'd like to think that I'd be familiar with someone as powerful as you. What agency are you signed with?"
Carol arched an eyebrow at. "I'm pretty much a free agent. Sometimes I work with the Avengers when our interests align. Helped Thor and the Guardians of the Galaxy out of a jam two or three months ago. Why?"
"I've never heard of an agency called the 'Avengers', or one known as the 'Guardians of the Galaxy'. And you don't work for a hero agency yourself? That's impossible. Every hero works for one agency or another, from the lowliest sidekick to All Might himself. It's how you get paid." Exchanging an unreadable look with the size-shifter, the wooden man stepped forward and looked Carol up and down slowly. Given that he either had a face made of wood or was wearing a well-crafted wooden mask, it was hard to make out any sort of facial expression but he seemed distinctly suspicious to Carol. "You are a professional hero, right? Licensed and everything?"
Heroes were licensed here? Had she missed something really important in the past twelve months while she was busy visiting other planets? Was this a new twist on the 'Sokovia Accords' that Rhodey had mentioned back when she first returned to Earth? No, she decided, he'd mentioned registration but nothing about licenses or hero agencies or getting paid. It all spoke of a hero population far too significant to have miraculously sprung up in the short span of time that she'd been gone, and Carol suddenly found herself beset by the sinking suspicion that the rift that she'd passed through had done more than just hurl her all the way back to Earth. Or rather... her Earth. "Not... exactly."
As emergency response vehicles finally began to arrive on the scene, police vans blocking off one end of the alley as fire trucks clustered around the other, the size-shifting heroine chuckled before reaching up to rub the back of her head nervously. "Well, at least I'm not going to be the one in trouble this time..."