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The Monster and the Beast

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It was a stormy night, not uncommon for their land but it had been getting colder as the days went on. Winter was around the corner and people were starting to notice. Kirishima had just finished shutting the last open window when the rain started to spatter itself on the panes of glass. He moved back over to the large fire place where a lone figure sat partially looking at the open book in his hand and the cracking fire that warmed the area. “Are you ok, Your Highness?” “Hmm? Oh, yes, thank you Kirishima.” He said looking up to the boy.

“You’re welcome, Your Highness. Is there anything else you need tonight?” Kirishima asked, it was getting late and the day was starting to take a toll on him.
“You could start calling me Todoroki like I’ve asked you to. We’ve known each other for our entire lives Kirishima, I don’t think you need to call me that anymore.” Todoroki said as he closed his book and turned his full attention to the boy in front of him.

Kirishima chuckled and dropped his body next to the prince, “yeah, I know. But I gotta practice for when your dad brings over other diplomats. Can’t have them thinking I’m a bad servant because I call you Todo-san all the time.” He paused for a second, “plus if your dad found out he would flog me and send me off to the barbarians.”

Todoroki hummed, “yes, I guess he would.”

“We should get to bed Todo, you know how your dad can be when you don’t get up at a decent time.”

“I don’t get up at a decent time because some of my staff doesn’t know when to wake me up.” He said looking pointedly at Kirishima.

“Oh, yeah, yeah. Laugh it up, it was one time!” Kirishima rolled his eyes at the prince, remembering when he had gotten up so late that Todoroki had to wake him up instead.

As the two friends talked the storm outside continued to rage against the castle, they continued their conversations until a loud banging came from the front doors. Instantly the boys were on their feet and Kirishima was on his way to the doors. When he opened them he was greeted with the face of an old woman. “Hello, good sir. Would you house an old woman until this storm dies down? I don’t have much to offer other than these roses I had picked on my way back home.”

Upon hearing the old woman Todoroki came to stand next to Kirishima, “you don’t need to give us anything ma’am, you may stay until the storm is over. Come, warm yourself by the fire.”

“Oh, what a dear you are.” She smiled as Todoroki led her to the couches that the boys were occupying only moments before.

“Do you need anything ma’am?” Kirishima asks, reverting into his servant mode.

Before she could answer Todoroki told him to get some water and whatever leftovers they had from dinner, there always were some. Nodding, Kirishima retired to the kitchen to retrieve the meal. He had just finished preparing it when he heard a thunderous roar come from the foyer. Instantly he rushed to the foyer, dropping his tray of meats and cheese. Upon entering the foyer he found the old woman near the front entrance, with Todoroki in front of her blocking her from the King. The king looked enraged, his beard and mustache in flames and growing larger by the second he had been screaming unperceivable words when Kirishima had entered the room and was only catching them as he got closer.

“Get her the fuck out of here! We don’t take charity! Nor do we allow people like,” he flailed his arms at the woman gesturing to her appearances. “That, to enter our castle! Shouto, you will be reprimanded for this I swear to it.” He snarled his flames growing brighter by the second.

“Do not be fooled My King, appearances are not everything, often beauty is found within.” The old woman said quietly, her voice ringing into the crackling air.

This only seemed to enrage the King more, for he started to advance on her and Todoroki. Todoroki’s eyes widened and he shakily dropped into an awkward fighting stance ready to defend this woman from his father’s wrath. As the King grew closer to the two figures Kirishima could do nothing but watch it unfold. His quirk hadn’t shown itself yet so he could do nothing to assuage the oncoming barrage that the King would reign down and even Todoroki’s growing dual quirk would do nothing against a person with forty years of experience with their quirk.

Suddenly a hand laid itself on Todoroki’s shoulder gently pushing him to the side. Behind him was no longer the old woman that the boys had let inside the castle, instead it was a glowing enchantress now taller than the King instead of being as short as the two young men. “You will not hurt these boys nor will you hurt me Todoroki Enji.” She stepped forward, past the younger Todoroki who then scrambled over to his friend.

The King began to sputter and apologies, his flames dying out to a flicker in the presence of the witch. Apologies and fire popped around the two like grease on a hot pan the King’s pleas fell on deaf ears. “Stop your whimpering. It suits you, but is useless.” She stopped when she was a few steps away from him. “Stand and face me. You are a horrible man Todoroki Enji, I have seen inside you and you hold no love. Not even for your children or wife. You were even willing to raise your hand against one.” She looked over at the two boys for a moment, thinking. “This is your crown prince, no? The one you wish to take over after you die?” she thought for a moment more before turning back to the groveling King. Her mouth spread wide in a sadistic smile, “not anymore.”

The witch launched a curse at the young Todoroki, letting the ball of bright light soar through the air and towards his chest. Though the thing she did not expect was that someone would protect him. Kirishima pushed Todoroki out of the way and launched himself in front of the curse, effectively absorbing it into his own body. Instantly the curse took root.

Kirishima’s body started to change, his skin began to ripple and harden sporadically across his body. Horns sprouted from atop his head and teeth as sharp as knives replaced flat ones. From root to tip his hair became a flaming red, weeding out the previous color of black. Kirishima fell to the ground in pain, holding his head and arching his back as pain bounded through his nerves. He felt nothing from the outside world, heard nothing of his own screams or the ones from his friend. He saw nothing of the terror on the royal family’s faces nor the shock from the witch.

Chapter Text

It took Kirishima a while to understand what became of him that day. Firstly, he found that yes, he was a beast. A beast with the feet, tail, and horns of a dragon apparently, years later as he was looking through the library the castle held he found that he closely resembled that of a Chinese or Japanese mythological dragon. His feet and hands had turned scaly and deadly upon his awakenment the following day, which caused many scars over the years, including the very first directly above his left eye, almost blinding him.

Kirishima didn’t only gain a tail, horns, and deadly appendages. His hair, which was once an inky black grew in at a vibrant red, matching the scales that made up his tail and much of his body. As he grew older his height never seemed to stop, and neither did the muscle that was stacked on him, finding he had the ability to easily lift and throw a large tree.

As time went on he also found that he wasn’t the only thing to change. Kirishima could no longer travel farther than the walls of the castle, and anything that came inside the walls tended to be forced to stay. Over the years a multitude of small animals came across the border, some on accident, others to seek the safety of the walls. Predators rarely came near the stone walls for fear of the dragon that lived on the other side. With this small influx of company Kirishima became less lonely at the crumbling castle. But the lack of human interaction made the extroverted dragon quiet, and sad on some days.

He kept the humans that did come by out be scaring them, he hated to do this, but he knew that if any humans came inside the barrier they would never be able to leave the walls of the castle. And he didn’t want anyone to suffer the same fate he was forced into.

The humans that did get close enough to see Kirishima in all his scaly glory mostly ran away, though the few brave souls that came to kill him failed upon hearing his inhuman roar and seeing the razor-sharp claws that adorned his hands. The even bolder few would sneak by at night and try to catch Kirishima off guard, though he was always there to greet them with a sharp smile and glinting eyes.

~

Bakugou Katsuki was born in a time where people lived in small villages made of wood, not stone. And disease ran rampant through the streets, how he survived it was a mystery. Now houses were built to last, not to be burnt to the ground when disease had taken over half the city and the only way to stop it was to kill it with fire.

Bakugou had liked those days.

The best way to describe Bakugou was to not describe him at all, turn around and never make eye contact with him. It was not because of the fact that he was a hideous person, no, in fact many who dared to look at him would call him quite handsome. However, his abrasive and toxic demeanor causes all who interact with him to immediately wish they had never seen him, no matter how pretty his face was.

Though, he wasn’t always as mean and nasty as he is now. Don’t get me wrong, he was always quite unsociable and offensive, but once he was cursed to live forever, he became an unbearable monster.

Bakugou hated that day.

If you asked him, he was not at fault for his curse. That blame would all end on the witch that cursed him. He was only doing his job, what he was hired to do. And that was to kill the witch. He’d finished the job, she’s dead now, but only after a curse was put on him and he was tormented to live life forever, no matter how shitty it got. On the plus side he can make explosions come out of his hands. And over the century that’s passed by he’s gotten pretty good at them as well.

One would think that he would stop killing the creatures who cursed him, however, that was not Bakugou’s style. He liked the phrase ‘revenge is a dish best served cold’, rather than the phrase ‘forgive and forget’. And this went on for nearly a century now, he killed the monsters and beasts that terrorized the lives of the humans around them. The villagers still don’t like him, yet if they have the money or resources they hire him to get rid of the beasts and monsters that plague them.

Bakugou is a mercenary for hire, it’s as simple as that. If someone is willing to pay him, or give him free food, he’ll kill it. Given that it’s not human, he’s a hero damnit, not a demon.

So when he was offered a job by King Endeavor himself, how in the hell could he refuse? His newest assignment was in a town not far from the capital, maybe a day at most. Less if Bakugou wanted to buy a horse, but people always seem to rub him the wrong way. Merchants were often the worse, trying to haggle him for a higher price for when he knew damn well sure that an apple cost less than a bronze piece, and bread cost at least two.

So he would walk, staying in the alleyways for now, and then the beaten trails to the next town. Where the beast in the castle lives. And where the beast in the castle will die.

Chapter Text

In the years that Kirishima was alone he had very few visitors, those who were lost, he simply steered them on their way, he donned a large cloak, even in the warmest of weather and gently nudged them to the direction they intended to go. Those who were deliberately seeking out the castle were too terrified to ever return bringing back tales of a massive winged creature the size of at least five horses with teeth half that size.

The tales were always wrong of course, but it was enough that Kirishima didn’t see many more thieves, only the ‘bravest’ of the few came near the castle. They never came near the walls of the castle, instead trying to taunt him into coming outside. He never did, he was bound to the grounds of the castle and therefore couldn’t fight them directly. Though the powers he possessed would have been better for fighting in close range rather than keeping the arrows from piercing his shin. If a child was ever trying to be brave, Kirishima only snapped a twig at the right moment, maybe a growl here or there, just to get them running away in fear of wolves instead of beasts, it worked every time and none were ever hurt.

There was one day though, one day that changed everything. Somehow a man had gotten close to the border (not in it mind you) without Kirishima ever having the faintest idea that he was there. He only became aware of it when a loud boom went off close to the border, he was soon in the air and to the scene.

When he arrived there were trees down and smoking, small fires among the ashes. They were far enough away that Kirishima couldn’t even put them out, only make sure they didn’t go onto his side of the barrier.

“You the fucker who lives here?”

The voice startled him so much that his wings flared out and he jumped at least fifteen feet into the air. He whipped his head around wildly, trying to find the source of the voice.

Thought you’d be scarier, looks more like you’re a frightened puppy.”

Kirishima raised his fist to the left, “hey! I’m plenty scary!” he heard a scoff from the other direction. “Scary enough to make you go back from where you came!”

A booming laugh came again from his right “I’d like to see you try shitty hair.”

“Bring it on.” He grinned, slamming his fists together, activating his hardened skin. It rippled across his body, starting from his hands and continuing onto his shoulders and down to his feet. It stayed away from his wings and their point of connection to his skin. No point in making his wings useless if he needed a quick getaway, and besides, they were armored enough how they were.

From Kirishima’s left came a loud rustling noise, like a person jumping from branch to branch. He followed the sound with his head, keeping track of where the figure was going. Suddenly, and quite literally explosively a man rocketed himself from the treetops and to Kirishima’s hardened form. He landed right in front of him and sent off another large explosion from his hands, Kirishima immediately raised his arms to protect his face.
The smoke cleared soon after and the blonde man in front of him only grinned when he saw that Kirishima had only slid back a few feet. “Oh this is going to be fun.” He said before lunging at Kirishima.

Kirishima’s eyes widened as the man got closer to the edge of the barrier, he moved towards the man, intent on keeping him on the other side of the invisible force. The man reared back a hand, ready to punch an explosion at Kirishima, but he caught it, just as it was going off. Effectively confusing the blonde man enough for Kirishima to be able to throw him back into the woods. “Stay out!” he warned, baring sharp teeth attempting to look scary. And he was, his hardened form and flared wings were a terrifying sight to many, but it only spurred the blonde on, he was on his feet in seconds.

“Like hell! Die you shitty bastard!” This guy really won’t give up will he? Kirishima thought, readying himself for a drag out fight. The blonde shot himself at Kirishima, who then caught him by the hands and held him just beyond the borders edge.

They stayed there, locked in place, both snarling at each other. The blonde left off explosions, trying to deter Kirishima. But he never moved, hardening dulling the blasts and clawed feet digging into the soft earth.

With a large blast the blonde jumped back, “Fucking die already!”

“Not gonna happen Blasty,” Kirishima growled back.

“That’s not my name you shithead!” he roared. Suddenly he exploded over Kirishima’s head, flipping his body in the air to face his opponent once more.

“God damnit Blasty.” Kirishima grumbled as he lowered his hardening, “you weren’t supposed to go past the barrier.”

The blonde was taken aback, “what fucking barrier? And don’t lower your guard shitty hair, fight me!” he lunged again, aiming at the unguarded man.

Kirishima panicked, as the blonde rushed him, he hardened his arm and swung at the incoming body. A loud thud sounded twice, one by an arm and a body, the other by a body and the ground. Kirishima looked down at the blonde, “I told you to stay on the other side of the barrier.”