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The World Unknown

Chapter Text

Izuku placed his hands on the steel bars of the gate, his emerald green eyes wide and filled with wonder.

”What is this?”

Beyond the steel bars is a huge, dark tunnel. Framed by walls made of brick, and a concrete path resembling a road is built into the ground. No light can be seen on the other side of the tunnel, and it’s completely lifeless and empty.

”It’s a gate. It connects the inside and outside.” Momo briefly explained.

”Wow, the outside, huh? We’ve never been outside before.” Ochaco chirped, her chocolate brown eyes are as wide as Izuku’s.

“That’s because we’ve been here since we were born.” Momo answered with a soft smile.

”What do you think could be out there?” Eijiro asked, he has a bandage on his right temple due to an accident with his quirk.

”Maybe lots of things. Like some of the things we read about in the books.” Izuku replied enthusiastically.

There was a pause between the six children for a moment as they stood next to the gate, looking on into the tunnel.

”’Don’t go near the gate or the fence in the back of the forest because it’s too dangerous.’ That’s what Mom always says, doesn’t she?” Ochaco commented, her gaze adverted to the ground as if she was pondering about something.

”That’s obviously a lie.” Shoto spoke up. His left eye was patched and bandaged up, apparently he had an accident with his quirk, too. But the situation was more obscure than Eijiro’s, since the other children didn’t see it happen. And lately, Shoto hasn’t been very happy or optimistic compared to everyone else.

”Hey Shoto, what do you wanna do when you get out?” Denki asked, trying to make sure everyone’s spirits have brighten up, including the bi-colored boy.

”I don’t know. What about you?” Shoto replied.

”I wanna ride a giraffe!” Denki beamed, a goofy grin on his face.

”Hehehe! That’s silly, Denki!” Ochaco giggled.

Momo glanced at Izuku for a second as he smiled back at her. She then placed a hand on one of the steel bars of the gate. “I wonder what this gate is protecting us from.”


Five years later

The sun begins to rise and shine onto the Gracefield House as early morning has arrived. The grandfather clock ticks until it’s hands reached 6:00, and begins to chime, it’s ringing echoing throughout the house. Izuku’s eyes flutter open as he drowsily sits up and stretches his body. Once he’s fully awake, he smiles towards everyone else, who are still currently in the other beds surrounding his, and he calls out to start the usual routine, “Good morning everyone! Wake up, it’s time for breakfast!”

The other children are up and wide awake in no time. While most of them are putting on their clean white uniforms, some are running around, laughing and chasing each other.

”Everyone, please, settle down and get ready!” Momo calls out while she’s tying her elegant, black hair in a spiky ponytail.

Some of the younger kids pounced on Denki while he was trying to shake the tiredness off, shouting “Good morning, Denki!” The blond laughed and pulled the little ones into a hug. “Morning, guys!”

”Ochaco! Can you please help us?” A few of the four year olds asked, holding out their shoes to the brunette, fretting over the fact they can’t tie their shoes properly yet. Ochaco smiles softly and replied, “Okay! Just hold on a second.”

Once everyone is ready, they all came rushing towards the dining hall, their faces filled with delight at the thought of what they might be eating this morning. Izuku followed the other children, but pauses at the sight of a familiar boy with dark hair and a spiky, red hat and a girl with cute hazel curls, pointy feline ears, and holding a stuffed cat.

“Good morning, Kota, Mayu! Oh, and little Ernie!” Izuku greeted the two kids. Kota is a six year old boy, despite having a stubborn and passive aggressive attitude sometimes, he looks up to Izuku as an older brother. Mayu is also a six year old, but unlike Kota, she is really sweet and caring towards everyone, and Ernie is her beloved cat plushie. “Good morning, Izuku!” They both greeted back in unison.

”Hooray! We’re here!” Eijiro rushes into the dining hall while holding one of the younger kids. A pair of twins suddenly pushed him abruptly and giggled mischievously. Eijiro turned toward them and starts showing off his shark teeth. “Argh! I’m gonna eat you!” He tried to laugh as evilly as he could as the twins run away from him, playfully shrieking as Eijiro chases them.

”They’re at it again.” Momo sighs, smiling and shaking her head as she helps Izuku and Ochaco set up the tables. Then the door on the other side of the dining hall opened and Shoto comes in, pushing a large cart filled with food and pitchers of milk.

”Good morning, Shoto!” Izuku greeted happily.

”Good morning.” Shoto greeted back, as usual, his tone is mellow. But nonetheless, a small smile formed on his face.

Denki runs into the dining hall while giving a toddler a piggyback ride. “Hey! Is breakfast ready?” He asked.

”Yep! It’s right here!” Ochaco replies cheerfully.

Eijiro comes back into the dining hall, it seems he has caught the twins as they’re both in his arms. All three of them are laughing as they entered the room.

”My goodness, there’s so much energy this morning.” A soft, kind voice says gently. A tall woman entered the room in her usual maid dress, her white hair tied in a bun, and she smiles at her precious children with passion. Mother Rei.

She ruffled both Denki's and Eijiro's hair, “You two have always made the house feel so lively. That’s what we adore most about you.” She murmurs, her tone so pleasant. All of the children love Mother Rei, even though she’s not their real mother, and all of the children love each other as siblings, despite not being blood related. 

Denki smiles and Eijiro rubs the back of his neck and they both reply warmly in unison, “Thanks, Mom!”

Mother Rei walked towards Izuku, Ochaco, and Momo and pats their heads affectionately. “Thank you so much for all your help, the thing that we love about you is how caring you are for your family.”

The trio smiles and replies, “You’re welcome, Mom!”

Mother Rei glances at Shoto and gave him a pleasant smile, “Thanks to you too, Shoto.”

Shoto’s small smile started to wary and he adverts his gaze, “You’re welcome, Mom...”

As soon as everyone has settled down and took their seats around the large tables, Mother Rei rings a bell, calling for everyone’s attention. “Good morning, my dear children. Let’s give thanks that all 38 of your siblings are here to live happily today...” she puts her hands together as if she was praying, all of the children did the same. “Thank you for the food.” She says softly. “Thank you for the food!” The children echoed. Then they all begin to feast on their breakfast.

All of the children in Gracefield House are all unique in their own way, even if the majority of them possess the same joyfulness and naiveness. They’re all required to wear the same white uniforms everyday, and they’ve always been at the orphanage for as long as they can remember. They all have their own unique quirks, with the exception of Izuku who is actually quirkless, and they have their own individual serial numbers tattooed onto their necks. Izuku’s number is 96767. Ochaco’s is 14304. Momo’s, 82361. Denki’s, 96234. Eijiro’s, 20948. And Shoto’s is 67630. None of the children know why they have numbers permanently marked on their necks, all they know is that they just do.

Mother Rei gave Mayu a spoonful of mashed potatoes, which she ate with savory. “It’s delicious!” Mayu says softly. “I’m glad you like it, this is your last breakfast here after all.” Rei replies gently. “Can I spend the whole day with the others?” Mayu asked hopefully. “Of course.” Rei answers. Today is October 12th, today is Mayu’s last day at the orphanage.


 

“Age 11, Type 1. Answer every question within ten seconds. We will now begin.”

Everyday, the kids take a timed IQ test. It measures how much the kids are learning and how well they can perform academically under pressure. All of the children are focused and concentrated on their tests, their hands moving rapidly from one question to the next. Once the ten seconds have already passed, they stopped and sighed softly as they stretched their limbs, and waited for the results from Mother Rei.

The white haired woman stepped into the classroom with a few sheets of paper in her hands. “Are you all ready for the results?” She asked, and a lot of the little kids shouted “Yeah!” in response. Rei looked at her papers.

”Let’s see... Momo, Shoto, Izuku. The three of them got everything right. Perfect scores! Ochaco, Eijiro, Denki. You didn’t quite get everything right, but you did get a lot of the tougher questions correct. Better than yesterday. Keep up the good work, everyone!” Rei spoke, her tone implied that she’s pleased with everyone’s efforts.

The majority of the younger kids made noises of astonishment and admiration. The six kids in question are the eldest among the children, they’re 11 years old, and everyone knows they’re extremely close because of their age and how well they perform on each test, which makes them stand out from the rest of the children.


 

Later in the afternoon, outside in the open field of the orphanage, the mass majority of the children scattered excitedly as they’re all playing tag. Momo was selected to be ‘it’, she waited for everyone to find their hiding places on top of the hill and gave Shoto a quick glance. The bi-colored boy sat underneath a tree with a book in his lap, he doesn’t often play with the other kids, instead he usually reads his books while everyone is preoccupied with their games. He checked his pocket watch and the time was 1:10, whoever’s ‘it’ usually has about 20 minutes to find and tag everyone. He nodded towards Momo, signaling her to go. She smiled and started running to begin her chase to catch the other children.

A large group of the kids were hiding in the same place, within the bushes of the tree line which made up the entrance to the forest. They remained silent and kept an eye out for Momo, but she was already behind them and she caught them by surprise when she tagged one of them.

”Heh. We’ll outrun her this time.” Kota snickered as he looked around for the black haired girl. Mayu was with him, her cat ears twitching to pick up any sounds of footsteps anywhere. “I don’t hear her yet.” She commented as she held Little Ernie tightly. “She’s smart, so she’s knows how to catch us by surprise.” Kota stated, squinting his eyes to see a little further into the trees.

”Well, I’m a bit flattered to hear that.” A kind voice came from behind the two kids, they turned around to see Momo standing there smiling at them. “Run!” Kota shouted as he tried to sprint away, but Momo already tapped his shoulder as he made only as far as a few steps. “Good effort, Kota. But I still got you.” Momo giggled. Kota groaned and hung his head in defeat.

In a matter of minutes, Momo has tagged almost all of the kids. They all stood by the hill, waiting for the game to be over.

”Awww, I can’t believe she got me again!”

”Well, that’s Momo for ya!”

”Who are the only survivors left?”

”You know. It’s Izuku, Ochaco, Eijiro, and Denki.”

Shoto was still sitting underneath the tree with a book on his lap. He checked his pocket watch again, Momo has 10 minutes left to catch the remaining four kids.

Izuku, Ochaco, Eijiro, and Denki all ran together in the forest, they know the best hiding places were in the deep parts of the woods even though most of the other kids hardly go there. “Now, break!” Izuku called out, and the four splits up into groups of two, to make it harder for Momo to catch all of them.

Unfortunately, Momo is fast on her feet and was already behind Izuku and Ochaco before they knew she was there. They yelped as Momo tagged both of them at the same time. “I’m sure you will have better luck next time.” Momo says as she ran off to chase after Eijiro and Denki.

“Aww, and I thought the plan was gonna work.” Ochaco groaned. Izuku chuckled nervously and replied, “Well, you have to admit we’re not as physically capable as Momo. I guess the plan could’ve have worked if we were more athletic.”

”She’s coming!” Denki called out to Eijiro. The two boys turned their heads to see Momo catching up to them. They grinned, determined to outrun her and win the game. They leapt over a ledge, and Momo followed in suit. But after leaping over the ledge, the boy’s were no longer in Momo’s line of sight, so she wandered further in the forest, glancing at every direction and checking the ground for footprints.

Eijiro and Denki were hiding in a tree, they remained silent and suppressed their laughter as Momo walked nearby the tree, seemingly unaware that the duo was right above her. Then suddenly Momo tripped and let out what seems like a surprised yelp. The boys’ eyes widened, and they jumped down safely from the tree to check on Momo, their faces filled with concern.

”You okay, Momo?” Eijiro asked worriedly. Momo looked up at them with a smile. “I was just pretending.” She replied.

”No fair! We were really worried there for a second!” Denki pouted. 

“You guys are sweet, really. But sometimes that can make you vulnerable.” Momo says as she takes the opportunity to tap both of them on the shoulder, winning the game of tag.

Afterwards, the six eldest kids decided to take a break and join Shoto underneath the tree at the top of the hill while the other kids play amongst each other. Izuku was stretching his arms until he noticed Kota and Mayu approaching them, he called out to the two, “Oh! Hi, you guys. You need anything?”

”Nah. The others are playing games, but they’re boring.” Kota shrugged.

”How are you feeling, Mayu?” Ochaco asked kindly. The little girl with the hazel hair and excellent-hearing cat ears smiled softly, “I’m feeling great! Thank you for asking.”

There was a stillness in the air for a moment. Recently, Mayu was selected to be adopted. This is the last day they’ll see her, they hoped they might see each other again. After all, every orphan gets a chance to leave before they turn 12. Although, it is hard to think that Mayu is going to have a new family when she already has a family here in the orphanage. All of the children in the House are truer siblings than most in the world. And Mother Rei loves them as if they’re all her own children.

“I’m going to miss all of you...” Mayu speaks up, her smile shifted into a sad frown. Tightening her grip on her cat plushie.

”Oh, we’ll miss you too, Mayu. But don’t think like that, think of all the amazing things you could do outside!” Izuku replied cheerfully, they wouldn’t want to let Mayu leave while feeling sad.

Thankfully, Mayu perked up, her smile returning. “Yeah, I guess it is wonderful to see what the outside world looks like! When I grow up, I want become a mom, just like Mama! That way, no child will be left behind!” She proclaims innocently.

”Aww! You’ll be an awesome mom, Mayu!” Eijiro cooed as he pulled Mayu into a hug, the cat girl giggled in response to the affection.

”You’ll write letters to us, right?” Denki asked as he patted her head. The orphans that have left Gracefield House to be with their foster families never wrote any letters to them, that’s the only thing they thought was very strange.

”Yeah! I promise I’ll write letters, I’ll never forget any of you. It’s kinda sad that the others never wrote, though.” Mayu said thoughtfully.

”I’m sure they’re just being considerate for their foster families.” Momo reassured. “Or maybe they’re having too much fun with their new families.” Ochaco suggested a bit glumly.

”I never minded that. I’m happy for them!” Izuku speaks up before turning to Mayu. “I’m positive that you’re new family will take such good care of you, Mayu!”

A bright smile formed on Mayu’s face, that smile will surely be missed.


 

It’s nighttime, and it’s time for Mayu to leave the orphanage. Everyone has gathered in front of the main entrance of the House, Mayu was dressed in formal clothes and Rei was holding her suitcase for her.

“Goodbye, everyone. I’m slow, and I’m not as smart as the rest of you, but even so, I’ll do my best! I wish you all well when I’m gone...” Mayu tries to say calmly, but it was obvious that she’s overflowing with emotion.

”Bye, Mayu!” The majority of the children said in unison, their tones were quite solemn.

Then the ice broke, and Mayu started crying loudly, “I don’t want to go anymore! I want to stay with everyone!”

Izuku, Ochaco, and a lot of the other kids resisted the urge to cry as Rei ushered Mayu out the door, and Mayu left the House.

Later that same night, Izuku and Denki grabbed a broom and headed towards the dining hall to do some cleaning before going to bed. But as they entered the hall, they noticed something familiar on one of the tables. Their eyes widen when they realized it was Mayu’s cat plushie. They could not believe that Mayu had forgotten Little Ernie of all things, and they knew she would be heartbroken without it.

Izuku grabbed Little Ernie and the both of them rushed out of the dining hall. On the way out, they met up with Eijiro, Momo, and Ochaco. “What’s the matter?... Oh no!” The brunette asked before noticing the cat plush in Izuku’s hands. “How did she lose that? Those two are practically inseparable!” Eijiro questioned, bewildered by the fact that Mayu would ever leave someplace without her beloved cat.

”But Mayu has already left the House, she could’ve went beyond the gate by now...” Momo replied fearfully. Then Shoto appeared descending from the stairs. “There’s still time. The light by the gate is still on and Mom didn’t come back yet. If you hurry, you could make it and give it back to her.” He suggested coolly.

“Right! We’ll do just that. Thanks, Shoto!” Izuku called out as the five of them rushed outside the House. Shoto stood there and stared at the ground for a moment. Knowing that his closest siblings will finally know the truth about this place.


 

The five of them ran from the House and towards the gate. The last time they’ve been really close to the gate was when they were 6 years old. They slowed down their pace when approaching the gate to see that it’s open, the steel bars were no longer guarding the entrance.

“‘Never go near the gate’...” Ochaco quoted something Rei once said. “Yeah... But we could worry about being scolded later, right?” Denki replied and the others nodded in agreement.

They stopped and peered into the tunnel. It’s very dark and the only light sources were the old oil lamps hanging off the walls. They used to look into the tunnel with curiosity, but now the tunnel seems very foreboding.

”Mayu?” Ochaco called out, but there was nothing but silence and there’s no sign of anyone in the tunnel. Slowly, they walked into the tunnel. As they traveled deeper into the dark corridor, they found a truck, but there’s still no one there. They gazed at the truck for a moment.

”So this is what a vehicle looks like...” Izuku commented, as it is true that they’ve only saw vehicles in books until now.

The five have decided to look around for a bit since there’s nobody else in the tunnel. They looked inside the interior of the truck, where the driver seat, the wheel, and other things that were expected to be seen inside a truck is. Ochaco, Izuku, and Denki went around the back of the truck.

”Do you think Mayu will find Ernie if we leave it in the back?” Denki asked. “Pretty sure.” Eijiro replied. “Yes. You guys go ahead.” Momo says as she further observes their surroundings.

After another moment of silence and looking around, there was a sound of Little Ernie being dropped to the ground.

Eijiro and Momo turned towards the back of the truck to see Ochaco staggering backwards, Denki trembling violently, and they heard Izuku whimper in fear.

”What’s wrong?” Eijiro asked in concern and worry. Momo stayed quiet, but she had a feeling that something was terribly wrong. The two of them stride towards the back of the truck and they stood next to the others. Both of them looked inside. Momo gasped and covered her mouth with her hands, Eijiro froze as he laid his eyes on the horrifying sight before him.

Mayu laid in the back of the truck completely lifeless, and it seemed like she had been tossed in there half-heartedly. Her eyes were wide open and blank. All of the color had been drained from her face. A blood red flower seemed to have bloomed from her chest, as if she had been stabbed right in the heart by something that was supposedly beautiful. Mayu is dead.

”Is someone there?”

”Hey, did you hear something?”

Two unknown voices enacted from a closed door a few feet away from the five kids. Ochaco hurriedly grabbed Little Ernie from the ground and the kids rushed to hide underneath the truck as unlocking noises were heard and the door opened.

“Hmm, seems like no one is here.”

”Could’ve been an animal from the forest here.”

The voices were more clear and footsteps can be heard as the two unfamiliar figures walked by the truck. The kids carefully scooted forward to get a better view so they can see whoever is talking, and to see whoever killed Mayu. Their eyes widen and they suppressed their screams as they gazed at the figures in front of them.

The figures are completely inhuman, their bodies are monstrous. Their glassy eyes are aligned vertically, they have bony hands, and they have large mouths lined with numerous rows of sharp teeth. Demons, is the best word to describe them.

The kids were absolutely horrified to see that such creatures exist. Momo quickly covered Ochaco’s mouth to keep her from whimpering and giving away their position. Denki had to force his mouth shut to keep himself from whimpering. Izuku trembled fearfully, and Eijiro tried his hardest to control his breathing.

One of the demons picked up Mayu’s body, it’s tongue and drool escaped from it’s mouth hungrily. “It looks so delicious! Human flesh is the best.” The demon says with malice.

The other demon suddenly placed a large cylinder shaped tank filled with unusual blue liquid, allowing the first demon to dump Mayu’s body into it. “Damn! Can I at least have a fingertip?” The first demon complained. “Idiot. This is valuable merchandise. All of the human flesh on this farm is for the rich. It’s not for the likes of us.” The second demon explained with tired frustration.

The kids couldn’t believe their ears. This place is a farm? They’re all food?

”Where’s Mom?” Denki whispered as quietly as possible. Izuku silently shushed him and placed his hand on top of the blond’s to calm him down a bit. But he is right, where is Mom?

As the two demons sealed up the tank that contained Mayu’s body, a third demon appeared. “Is the Gupna done?” The third demon asked. “Mostly done, sir.” The second demon answered with formality.

The third demon had a notepad in his skeletal hand and it stared at the papers in it. “Another 6 year old with low test scores and a relatively weak quirk. We’ve been shipping a lot of these lately. But it looks like we’ll be shipping some high quality ones soon... Rei.”

”Yes.”

The kids froze in horror at the sound of a familiar voice. That was definitely Mother Rei. She’s associated with the demons? Why? They couldn’t believe that the woman who had loved and cared for them and all of the other children would take part in this. She’s been giving many of the children who’ve been in Gracefield House away to be eaten by these monsters. They don’t know how much more they can take all of this.

“Make preparations to pluck out the six with the highest scores. Including the special case that doesn’t have a quirk.” The third demon ordered.

”Understood.” Rei responded emotionlessly.

”Wait. I smell something.” The third demon says as he handed the notepad to Rei. The demon turned it’s head towards the bottom of the truck. It kneeled down to look under it. There was nothing there, except a stuffed cat.


 

The five kids managed to get away without being seen. They ran as fast as they could until Izuku tripped and fell onto his knees, the others stopped to catch their breaths and check to make sure they’re all okay. Even though nothing is okay.

“This place is a farm? We’re all... food?” Ochaco panted, although she sounded like she was sobbing. “No, that can’t be. Everyone found foster homes...” That’s what she wanted to be true more than anything.

Tears were already flowing down Denki’s face, he struggled to control his breathing as he spoke, “And Mom... That really wasn’t her, was it? She’s still the usual, kind Mom, right?” The reality he once knew has been shattering right in front of him. He wanted all of this to be just a horrible and confusing nightmare. But this is the true reality.

Izuku looked towards Momo, desperate for confirmation about the whole situation. “We... we were mistaken... That girl we saw wasn’t Mayu, right?” He was desperate, they all were. The perfect, happy world they’ve known all their lives suddenly crumbled and conformed into a very dark place. Asking these questions was their last string of hope of believing that nothing they saw in the gate was real.

Eijiro looked at Momo as well, even though he knew the answer to all those questions. Momo gazed at her sibling with a pained face, she slowly swallowed, her throat tasted like bile. “That was Mayu... and that was Mom...” She helplessly answered.

Ochaco broke down crying, her sobs were choked. It took Izuku a moment to process all of the information they’ve just discovered and tears started running down his freckled face as well. He threw his head down to the ground and clutched his hands as he let out an agonized scream. They all huddled together and cried for awhile. When they finally calmed down a little bit, they walked back to the House.

As they entered the building, Shoto greeted them while holding a lantern. “Welcome back, how did it go?” He asked. Momo simply adverted her gaze, “We didn’t make it...” she replied. And with that, the five slowly made their way up the stairs and towards the bedroom.

Shoto knew what happened. He felt guilty for making them find out the truth like this. But he did it in order to save their lives.

In the bedroom, the five sat next to each other. Izuku and Ochaco are still crying, but they suppressed their sobs to prevent any of the other children from waking up. “We were raised just to be eaten by those monsters...” Ochaco says hopelessly, it was still unbelievable.

”Let’s escape. We need to leave this place. Don’t worry, we can do it. You guys, me, and Shoto. If it’s just the six of us, then...” Momo replied softly but was cut off by Izuku. “That may be impossible. We can’t just leave everyone here, otherwise they’ll surely get killed. I don’t want anymore of my family to die...” He whimpered sorrowfully, tears continued to flow down his face.

There was a moment of silence. Momo knows that they shouldn’t leave the others to die here, but trying to escape with everyone seems very impractical and borderline impossible. First, the other children may not be able to handle the horrible truth about Rei and the orphanage, which could certainly cause panic, if the other kids believe them that is. Secondly, a lot of the other children are too young to escape without significant help from the older kids. So escaping the orphanage with the other children may not be the best option in order to stay alive, but leaving them is too cruel for them to fathom. 

“It’s not impossible. We’ll figure something out. We can come up with a plan to make sure everyone escapes.” Eijiro says encouragingly. He knows that escaping the farm will be extremely hard, but they can’t just give up.

“But, how? How can us kids escape from those monsters?” Denki asked worriedly.

Another moment of silence passed, then Ochaco’s eyes lit up with an idea and she wiped the tears from the corner of her eyes. “Wait, I know. It’s like a game of tag. We just have to win.”

“That’s right. We’ll find a way for all of us to survive.” Momo replied as she smiles softly, and Izuku nodded.

”Yeah. Let’s all escape together.”

Chapter Text

Three Years Later

Daytime turned to dusk in Musutafu, Japan. The streets of the city are quite peaceful. People going about minding their own business, and a few cars driving along the road. A pro hero leaps from rooftop to rooftop while on night patrol.

Aizawa stops on top of a tall building that has a viewpoint of most of the city. Fortunately, there were no villains causing a huge ruckus and no reports of any crime or suspicious activity. Seems like tonight might turn out to be peaceful, despite Aizawa being certain that there’s always someone causing trouble.

After a few moments of vigilance, he jumped and climbed down from the buildings and began to roam the streets while avoiding the public eye. He wants to make sure no one is doing anything illegal in the alleyways or in the inner depths of the city.

Initially, Aizawa was supposed to be planning lessons and grading papers, since he’s a teacher at U.A. But instead, he expelled his entire class. It’s not that the students were horrible, it’s just that they didn’t take hero work seriously. They believe being a hero is all fun and games, they never realized that heroes risk their lives all the time. In a real life situation, they would most likely worry about their own lives rather than the safety of others. Aizawa made the right decision, even if it meant crushing those kids’ dreams.

So the beginning of the school year was rough as a handful of the other teachers questioned Aizawa’s reasoning for expelling a whole class, but he doesn’t really care about what they think. They were focused on having new pro heroes graduate from U.A that they didn’t think the hero department needs students with the true qualities of becoming one.

However, Aizawa has took on a pupil who will be enrolling into U.A next year and who is definitely worth his time. Hitoshi Shinsou. When Aizawa first met the purple haired boy, he was struggling and he wants to be a hero to prove everyone wrong about his quirk. Which Aizawa can relate to, since he had faced a similar struggle in the past. Aizawa knows Shinsou’s quirk would be useless in the entrance exam, so he took it upon himself to give Shinsou personal training sessions. On the day of the entrance exam, Shinsou would be able to pass and get into the hero program at U.A. He trains the boy regularly which fits into his schedule quite conveniently, since he doesn’t have a class to teach at the moment.

As Aizawa traveled further into the alleyways, he stops when he heard movement coming from a few meters away from him. The sound was like a slight banging on a dumpster, although it is quite odd that someone would be tampering with trash. The sound stopped and Aizawa prepared himself for a potential struggle as he started to hear small footsteps.

Four relatively short figures came into view, and Aizawa blinked and raised a brow when he realized what exactly the figures are. They are just kids. Three boys and a girl, seemingly around 13 or 14 years old. Although there is something, off, about them. They’re wearing strange white clothes that almost resembled a uniform, and numbers are marked on their necks. Sort of alarmingly, one of the boys, the one with red and white hair, has a gnarly scar over his left eye. The girl has messy black hair tied into a ponytail. Another boy has dark hair and red eyes. And the last boy has disheveled blond hair with a black streak in the shape of a lightning bolt on the left side and golden eyes.

Aizawa noticed that the kids were carrying scraps of food that came from the garbage. Even if the kids were desperately hungry, they should know that food from the trash can make them sick. It seems like the kids didn’t notice Aizawa’s presence at the moment and continued their way down further into the alleyways. The pro hero silently followed to see where exactly they’re going. As he followed the kids, he began to ponder. Based on the clothes they’re wearing and the numbers on their necks, it could be possible that the children were being tested on like lab rats and managed to escape. Quirk experimentation isn’t an unknown topic among pro heroes, but it is sickening to think a group of scumbags would subject young children into that kind of hell.

Eventually, the kids walked around a corner of a building and stopped. Aizawa stayed hidden from view since he didn’t want to alarm the children and make them run away. 

“Here... it’s not much, but it’ll do for now.” A soft female voice said. Most likely the black haired girl. It sounds like the kids are giving some of their food scraps to someone. Maybe they’re more kids out here by themselves.

Then there was the subtle sound of the kids devouring their food scraps in a timely manner. Aizawa was about to show himself and take the children to somewhere more safe and sheltered than here in the dumps of the city until another female voice sounded.

“Uhm... Shoto?” The voice asked quietly, she sounded younger than 13.

”Yes, Eri?” The boy presumably named Shoto replied quietly. 

“Could you... Could you sing that song again?” The girl named Eri asked shyly.

After a pause, Shoto replied, “Yeah, sure...”

After a long moment of silence, Aizawa started to hear the boy humming. The tune was very pleasant to listen to, the pitch of the boy’s voice is precise and it seems like he has done this many times before. But Aizawa isn’t going to just stand there and do nothing.

He stepped forward and turned to look at the kids who were huddled together in a way that they’re practically laying on each other. The boy’s tune came to a stop, and all of the kids looked up at Aizawa with wide, scared eyes.

There are eight kids in total. Two of them seem to be 13 years old like the four Aizawa saw earlier, while the last two of the children look younger. The smallest boy seems to be around 9 years old, and he’s has black hair and wearing a red, spiky hat. And the smallest girl, presumably Eri, looks like she’s around 6 years old, and she has long, wavy, white hair and a tiny horn on the right side of her forehead.

Aizawa can see that the brunette haired girl has a broken leg, the only things keeping it in place were two sticks and long pieces of cloth. He’s certain that Recovery Girl is working overtime at U.A tonight, all the more reason to take these kids with him to the school.

“Don’t be afraid. I’m not here to harm you.” Aizawa says in a calm, soothing voice. But the children remained tense.

”Leave us alone!” The bi-colored boy, presumably Shoto, growled as ice formed in his right hand. So the children are a bit hostile, but Aizawa can handle this without any incident.

The hero used his quirk on the boy, erasing his powers momentarily as the ice disappears from his hand. The boy looked startled and confused, and the other kids seemed to be frightened a little more.

”I’m not here to hurt any of you.” Aizawa repeated his message, but the children still looked uneasy.

”It’s not safe here. Unless you want to stay in the alleys, I suggest you follow me. I know a place where you can stay.” Aizawa said firmly, since these kids are so apprehensive, it’s best to give them a choice than force them to come with him.

The children glanced at one another, considering their options. It took a long moment. Aizawa began to walk away until the black haired girl spoke up.

”Wait!”

The hero stopped, and looked back at the children. The girl wearing a ponytail glanced at the others for a second before looking up at Aizawa.

”We... We will go with you.” She murmurs softly.

Aizawa sighed softly, and gave the kids a moment to stand up and get ready for a long walk. U.A is not too far, but it’s still quite a distance from where they are.

He can tell that the kids are malnourished and haven’t had a decent meal in awhile. They look thin, not the healthy kind of thin, some of them were wobbly when they stood up from their spot, and overall they seem extremely fatigued.

The green haired boy was helping the brunette girl with the broken leg up, they took a few baby steps as the girl limped sluggishly.

”That won’t be necessary. I’ll carry her while you use what’s left of your energy to walk.” Aizawa suggested. The green haired boy looked up at Aizawa worriedly, then looked back at the girl, who seemed to be in too much pain to respond. The boy nodded and hesitantly let Aizawa grab hold of the girl and lifted her up in his arms.

They soon began their journey to the school, while at the same time avoiding the eyes of the public. It was a very silent walk. Usually children would make a lot of noise, but these children are much different. None of them said a word as they walked. Eri clings onto the tall, dark haired boy with red eyes. The smallest of the boys kept his head down as he walked, his hat hiding his face.

Aizawa noticed that the blond boy was struggling to stand up straight, so he slowed his pace so that the boy could lean on him for support. Thankfully, the blond accepted the silent offer.

As they finally arrived at U.A’s school grounds, the children seemed unsure about entering the unfamiliar building, but followed Aizawa inside nonetheless.

”Oh, Shouta! You’re back already!” A very loud voice greeted them as they went inside the school. The children flinched at the sudden loud sound. Aizawa gritted his teeth in annoyance. He should really tell Present Mic about the kids and to keep his voice down for the 1000th time.

The blond pro hero made his way towards the entrance and stopped abruptly upon seeing the group of children. He gave Aizawa a mildly curious look.

”Is Recovery Girl still in her office?” Aizawa asked sternly, he’ll explain the situation to the other hero later.

”Yeah, I think she’s still there.” Present Mic replied.

Aizawa gestured the children to follow him again, and they started to make their way towards the infirmary. When they got there, Aizawa knocked on the door without dropping the girl in his arms.

”Come in.” Said a gentle voice.

Aizawa opened the door and ushered the children inside the infirmary.

”Oh my... this is a pleasant surprise.” Recovery Girl commented as she gazed upon the group of children before her. Then she sees the brunette girl Aizawa is holding.

”Lay the poor dear on the bed, Aizawa. This will only take a second.” She instructed and Aizawa did just that.

The brunette shifted uncomfortably on the bed, and some of the children stiffened and looked tense again. Like they’re thinking Recovery Girl might hurt the chocolate haired girl.

Recovery Girl kissed the brunette’s forehead, she flinched and her broken leg began to glow as it shifts properly back in place. The brunette looked startled as she stood up and realized that her leg is fully healed. The other children seemed surprised too.

“All of you should get some rest. You’re welcome to spend the night here.” Recovery Girl replied softly. None of the children said anything in response as they glanced at each other again as if they’re reading each other’s minds.

The door opened and Toshinori, in his civilian form, entered the infirmary. “Excuse me, Mic informed me that Aizawa found some ‘unusual’ kids?”

Then, Toshinori froze the second he laid his eyes on the children. He recognized the white uniforms and he could see the numbers on their necks. The feeling of a dreadful epiphany coursed through him.

”Is something wrong, Yagi?” Aizawa asked, taking note that Toshinori looked visibly shaken.

”Ah... It’s nothing.” Toshinori replied as he regained his composure. He slowly approached the children in a more calmly manner.

“Hello there.” The tall blond greeted kindly with a soft smile. The kids said nothing back. Despite this, Toshinori kept his gentle demeanor. “It’s alright, all of you are safe here. What are your names?”

The kids seemed hesitant to introduce themselves to these strangers, but the green haired boy spoke up. “M-My name is Izuku, and this is Ochaco, Eijiro, Momo, Shoto, Denki, and the two younger ones are Kota and Eri.”

Aizawa and Recovery Girl glanced at each other for a brief second, seems that Toshinori is really good at coaxing children out of their shells. 

“It’s very nice to meet you. Please, make yourselves feel welcome here while you rest up. We’ll talk to you tomorrow, okay?” Toshinori spoke softly.

The children nodded in agreement, and the adults slowly left the infirmary.

Once Recovery Girl took her leave, Aizawa glanced at Toshinori. “You seemed shocked when you first saw the kids. Is there something we should know about them?” He asked, suspicious of Toshinori’s initial reaction to the children.

“Ah, well... It’s a bit of a long story. I’ll tell you when the time is right, I promise.” Toshinori replied nervously.

Aizawa stared at him for a long moment before sighing tiredly. “Alright, I trust you. I’m going to stay here with the kids to make sure they’ll be okay for the rest of the night.”

”Okay. See you tomorrow, Aizawa.”

”Yeah.”

As Toshinori exited the U.A building, he couldn’t stop thinking about the kids and the fact that a plantation used to give children to the demons is here in Japan.

Aizawa grabbed his sleeping bag and went back to the infirmary. When he opened the door, he immediately sees the kids all huddled together and asleep in the same bed. Kota and Eri are in the center of the bundle, while the rest of the kids have their limbs wrapped around each other as an effort to protect each other. Aizawa wonders if this has been a sleeping habit of theirs.

The pro hero slipped into his sleeping bag, gave the kids one more glance, and then drifted off to sleep.