No one was really sure where they came from, how they got there or why. One day seemed normal as it could be, then the next the world was infested with these strange creatures.
The first incident took place in the city of Minato, Tokyo, the strange creatures leaping out from the shadows and attacking the citizens. Causing them to disappear within moments of being attacked.
Slowly they began to spread, from cities to countries, soon enough to the entire world. It was an infestation that led Pro Heroes scrambling for a solution. Day in and day out they would set their sights on these creatures, attempting to balance out the fight with villains and the shadowy monsters.
People became panicked, scared to leave their homes for fear of being attacked. Especially in the nighttime, where the monsters seemed to become more frenzied and bold. Attacking anything that moved. Many Heroes and civilians were either injured or killed, overwhelmed by the creatures.
Just when it seemed like the end was near when larger and more powerful creatures began manifesting, someone appeared and slew them all in one fell swoop. With a swing of her curious blade and a wave of her hand, unleashing whatever elements she pleased, the monsters fell. One by one they all swarmed the stranger, only to be cut down and never appear again.
What Pros struggled with over months on end, this stranger was able to accomplish in mere moments.
She wouldn't stick around for the aftermath, disappearing as soon as they came and moving on to the next infestation. Only ever staying to heal a few people before leaving. No one was ever sure how the woman was able to fell these creatures, armed with only a key-shaped sword but they were thankful nonetheless.
A few months after this stranger's appearance the shadows appeared less frequently, only daring to show themselves come nighttime. Almost every time the woman was always there to save the day.
As thankful as citizens were the law still saw her as a vigilante, using her power without a license. Some heroes were sent after her to apprehend her. Every time she managed to escape, most heroes going after her on sight.
Yet there was one hero that persisted, Ingenium. No matter how many times he lost her he would always track her down. Again and again, they came face to face, and every time she would leave him in the dust. Laughing as she jumped over rooftops, evading capture before disappearing.
Over time she had made a name for herself, and the public had taken to calling her Guardian, the Hero of Light. Granted she was an unofficial hero, a vigilante in the eyes of the law and other Pro Heroes.
A wannabe hero pest to some, and a new symbol to many.
Izuku Midoriya was 5 years old when he first met Guardian, a few months after her first debut.
The boy had been hiding in a cluster of bushes, growing worried with each passing minute.
He, Kacchan, and the others were playing a game of hide-and-seek. The game had been going on for hours, and he had been so confident in his hiding spot. He had figured he'd blend in perfectly with the greenery and he'd never be found. He ended up falling asleep for a while, only to wake up in the dark.
They hadn't called out for him yet, which meant they had to still be looking for him. Right? He and Kacchan would play with the others for hours on end. Especially at hide-and-seek. They'd let him know if they were leaving, right?
Of course they would, but maybe they were looking in the wrong spot. Maybe it was time for him to change locations, maybe to somewhere they could find him easily. He was getting pretty tired and his mom must be worried, but he didn't want to risk leaving Kacchan and the others behind.
A hero wouldn't do that, neither would a best friend.
He shifted around for a bit before standing up, humming as he brushed himself off. He looked around with a bit of unease. Everything was dark and he could hardly see his hand in front of his face.
His mother told him to be back before dark, Kacchan's mom would want that too. That meant he had to find his friends and find them fast. Izuku's mom told him about the monsters that would appear at night, the main reason kids would flee indoors once the sun started to set.
"Kacchan?" He called out hesitantly. Everything looked different in the dark, he wasn't sure where he was. "Kacchan where are you?" He spoke a bit louder.
There was no answer.
The boy's lip trembled as his eyes began to water. He sniffed before rubbing at his eyes, trying to calm himself down. He wasn't supposed to cry, everyone said he cries too much.
"Maybe they thought I already went home." He muttered, gripping at the hem of his shirt. "Maybe that's why they're not here." He tried to reason it out. His mother always said to step back and think things over before panicking, it's never as bad as you think.
"Kacchan?" He tried again, beginning to move forward. If he kept calling someone would respond, someone had to find him. He shuddered as a cold wind blew past him, making leaves rustle and sending branches swaying this way and that.
He walked forward, further into the forest whereas he thought he was going home.
"Kacchan!" He shouted, freezing when he heard a bush began to rustle and shift. He smiled, hopeful. He quickly walked over, he knew his best friend wouldn't leave him!
"Y-You didn't leave! I'm sorry I was hiding for so long-" He began apologizing until he saw two beady yellow eyes staring at him from the foliage. First one pair, then two, then three, then soon enough he saw a wall of yellow eyes in the shadows ahead.
Izuku's stomach dropped as he backed away, looking around. Only to see more eyes staring him down. He was surrounded.
He whimpered while the creatures began to close in. He could hear them skittering all around, becoming eager as they grew closer and closer.
"Kacchan!" He called out, hoping someone would hear him. "Mama!"
He yelped as one jumped forward, claws outstretched. He didn't have a chance to dodge the creature before it pounced on him and began to claw at him. The child tried his best to fight back, screaming and crying while he tried to push the ant-like shadow off.
Just as the rest were about to overtake him, the air chilled and a frost began to appear on the ground. Before the creature attacking him could do any more damage, it was banished with a swipe of a blade. Disappearing in a puff of smoke.
He gasped and looked up, seeing a figure with a soft glow around her.
"Stay down, I'll take care of the rest of them." She spoke in a gentle yet firm tone.
Izuku could only bring himself to nod, watching in awe as the woman took a few steps forward. An even thicker frost began to manifest around them, leaving an untouched circle around herself and the child.
She stared ahead at the wall of shadows and took a deep breath.
She slammed her sword into the ground and a thick sheet of ice spread across the ground and slammed into the shadows, blowing them back before completely encasing them and freezing them in place.
With one fluid motion, she took her sword out of the ground and spun around with a loud shout. Sending a wave of ice from her blade, shattering the creatures that had been surrounding them.
As soon as they were gone some of the darkness seemed to leave the forest, making it a bit easier for them to see.
As soon as the rest of the shadows dissipated the woman approached the sniffling child. She knelt down and held out a hand, producing a small flame and giving them a bit more light.
"Are you alright?" She asked, getting a good look at him. She frowned at the scratched and scrapes he had earned from the scuffle with the lone shadow. "What is a child like you doing out here so late at night?"
Izuku could only nod, biting his lip before he broke out into tears.
"I don't know where my friends are!" He sobbed, wiping at his eyes. "We-We were playing a game, a-and I fell asleep. I woke up and it was dark, I-I'm trying to find them but I don't know where I am! Then the monsters came and I was scared!"
The woman let him cry for a bit before gently picking him up, her strange weapon disappearing. The flame left for a second, plunging them into darkness while she adjusted her hold on him. He cried a bit harder as the dark returned.
"Hold on." She murmured, trying to soothe him. She held out one hand again and created another flame, a bit brighter and bigger than the last.
Izuku clung to her and watched as she made some kind of sphere appear around the fire. It was clear with a few hexagonal shapes around the middle. It flashed a few times before staying as is.
"Can you hold this for me?" She asked him softly.
"That?" he asked, holding out his hands. He gasped as she passed it to him, it was warm to the touch. Not as hot as he was expecting. "Woah."
"There, now we can see." She hummed, stepping around a few bushes. Up ahead there was a small creek with a log acting as a bridge.
"Are we gonna try to find my friends?" Izuku asked, looking up to her. She had a mask that covered up the lower part of her face, it looked like some kind of armor. Granted it was incomplete, it still looked pretty tough.
"I didn't see or hear anyone else before I found you." She answered. "Maybe they're already back home."
Izuku looked down with a frown. "They left me?" He asked, biting his lip as he felt another wave of tears coming.
"No, no I'm sure they didn't leave you. Maybe they thought you headed home too." She tried to reassure him.
He sniffed and nodded. "M-Maybe."
The child rubbed at his eyes as he began to relax, once again looking at his savior. Who was she? Was she a hero? She looked kind of famliar.
"Who are you?" Izuku asked, tilting his head. "Are you a hero?"
The woman looked surprised before smiling. "I'm not a hero, I'm just doing my job." She insisted. "Keeping people safe from the darkness."
"But, you are a hero!" The child insisted. "You saved me, and you have such a cool Quirk!" He beamed. "And it's a hero's job to keep people safe."
That earned a soft laugh from her. "I suppose, maybe to you I'm a hero."
The boy gave her a beaming smile. "That's so cool. I wanna be a hero too." He hugged the sphere holding the flame a bit tighter. "I wanna save people too, just like All Might, Just like you. Maybe my Quirk will come in soon, it hasn't come yet though. Mama said I might just get it late…"
The woman glanced down at him, seeing his eyes water before he shook his head.
"You have a dream." She muttered, stopping after a moment. She could see some lights ahead, they were back near a neighborhood. They were close to where his home had to be.
He made a noise of confusion as she set him down, allowing him to keep their makeshift lantern.
"Here, let me see." She took his hand, sending a soft green glow over the boy's body. Healing up all his scratches.
The boy gasped in surprise and looked at his arm. "It doesn't hurt anymore."
The woman still had a hold of his hand.
"It's good to have a dream, especially one like yours." She stood up and ruffled his hair. "You should get going, does this place look familiar to you?" she asked.
Izuku looked around, nodding as he saw the gate his friend had broken down. "Yeah. Yeah! I know where I am! I can get home from here."
"Good, now run along. I'm sure your mom is worried about you." She gave him a gentle push.
"Me too." The boy muttered. He took a few steps forward and then stopped. Still holding the little lantern. He turned around and walked back to the strange woman, hugging her legs. "Thank you!"
Before the hero could respond he ran off, using the makeshift lantern to help him find his way. From afar there was someone calling out for him.
"It'll disappear soon." The woman muttered to herself, watching the boy run forward. "But he'll be close enough to home by the time it does."
She sighed and watched that light get further and further away, closer to the neighborhood and the voices that called out.
She hummed as she felt her magic fade.
"That boy, such a bright light." She murmured. "I didn't think I'd find something like that here." She clenched her fists as she looked ahead.
She could still feel it from here, and that was what drew her to that area. Just in time to save the boy. So much raw power and energy radiated off of him, ready to be honed into something powerful.
She summoned her Master's Keyblade and looked down at it.
"Maybe I should keep an eye on him. Just to be sure."