Heroes had to be reliable. No slacking off. They had to give it their all. From the very beginning.
So here he stood again, on U.A.’s sports field, ready to annoy some first years. The showing off of the one who had gotten first place in the exams was the same (an explosive teen this time, who Shouta already knew would cost him precious sleep). The “oh, this is gonna be fun” from the brats was the same. The threat of expulsion was the same. The same as every year he had done this.
“So. Sensei. Just so I get this right. We are supposed to pass these tests, using our quirks. Correct?”
“That’s what I said.”
“Nice,” the purple-haired boy said more to himself than to anyone else, stretching his arms in front of him as if to shake out the exhaustion that seemed to drape over him like a very wet blanket.
Without looking at Shouta, he continued “What, uh, what are the exact rules for this test?”
Shouta raised an eyebrow and placed the hand with his phone on his hip, the other one scratching at his stubble. Was the kid trying to find loopholes?
“Shinsou, was it?” The boy nodded. “What are you planning to do?”
“Just using my quirk.” He cocked his head to the side in a playful way and grinned. ”Plus Ultra and all that.”
What exactly was his quirk? Shouta hadn’t read any of the student’s files ahead of time, not wanting to let bias influence his decision on who to expel this year, and his memories of the entrance exam were hazy at best. In all honesty, Shouta just didn’t care about the kids or their quirks until he’d make his decision to keep them in his class.
Shinsou had obviously passed the entrance exam somehow , but Shouta couldn’t remember anything flashy coming from the sleep-deprived teen. This might just turn interesting.
Shouta sighed and lifted his phone to look at the rules.
“Stay inside the ring. Throw must be between the lines indicated on the floor,” he summarized.
The grin on the kid’s face grew impossibly wide as he whispered “Sweet” to himself and turned around to his classmates to survey them.
“Hey, Uraraka?” What is he doing?
“Uh, yes?” The girl in question stiffened at once, the last letter barely escaping her mouth. Her classmates didn’t seem to pick up on that, but years of underground hero work had trained Shouta to see the change in expression of the people he was working with.
“Mind lending me a hand?”
Without hesitation Uraraka nodded and walked closer. To be honest, Shouta was a little disappointed. Of course, heroes had to cooperate. But with the threat of expulsion hanging over their heads like the sword of Damocles, they were essentially competing against each other right now.
Oblivious to the teacher's frustration, Shinsou handed her the ball that was already registered within the app on Shouta’s phone.
She took it. She used her quirk. She threw the ball into the stratosphere. Exactly like she had done in her own attempt before. To nobody’s surprise an infinity symbol appeared on Shouta’s phone shortly after.
Shouta frowned at his phone as if it could give him any answers.
A blonde boy from the crowd of students spoke up “Duuude. That’s cheating. You are supposed to use your own quirk not someone else’s.” and others chimed in in frustration.
But nah. Shouta was pretty sure this had to do everything with Shinsou’s quirk. He hadn’t talked to the girl after the initial exchange. He had explained nothing and yet Uraraka knew what he wanted her to do. And technically he didn’t break the rules either. Interesting.
“Huh?” Uraraka stumbled forward a few steps and looked around herself, seemingly confused. “Was that a dream? What happened?” Correction, definitely confused.
“You just helped me get a perfect score during the ball throw.” A sheepish expression slid across Shinsou’s face. He showed no regrets whatsoever. Shouta had regrets, though. About ever even considering becoming a teacher. Working with this one would be a nightmare.
(He didn’t sleep much, so maybe nightmares were an acceptable trade-off for working with a student who showed some wits for once.)
“Dunno. Maybe you’re just nice.”
“But I don’t even know you!” Uraraka looked perfectly offended now and Shinsou went back to his peers without so much as looking at her.
He made her do something she wouldn’t have done on her own and she couldn’t remember doing it either. Yeah, Shinsou would be trouble. He could be a great hero with a quirk like this, but first and foremost he would be trouble.
Opening his mental filing cabinet, Shouta sorted him into the category of problem children. And he didn’t even need to close the drawer, because Midoriya followed right after with whatever the fuck that stunt had been.
The ball throw had yielded some interesting results, but the 50 meter dash was far more impressive. Apparently he had a lot of mobility based quirks in his class this year. Or those that could be used for mobility at least.
One Tenya Iida was by far the fastest and judging by his frown when he finished he had done this before and was not happy with his results. But then again, assuming Tensei had trained him, there was a lot of pressure on him already.
Ah, yes. On cue.
The boy, busy with getting out a packet of orange juice, turned around “Yes, who…”
“Your brother is Ingenium, right?” Shinsou asked with a smirk on his face.
Iida scowled when he saw the face of the boy who had just spoken. “Yes, he is! And fairness is a virtue, our family is taking very seriously, so I will not help you w—”
Air left Iida’s mouth in a wheeze, cutting off a word and probably many more after it, the beginning of which only Shinsou and Shouta could hear. And maybe Midoriya, who was eyeing his purple-haired classmate suspiciously.
Shinsou chuckled to himself and, upon seeing Midoriya right behind him, barely turned it into the most conspicuous cough Shouta had ever heard. The grin didn’t leave his face as he made his way to the start line, Iida following behind closely.
Iida didn’t stop, when Shinsou did, though. Instead, despite having already completed this test, he moved into a crouch start position on the lane Shinsou was supposed to take. He just stared ahead and…waited?
The purple-haired rolled up his sleeves and stretched his legs, eyeing Iida nervously.
“This is gonna look incredibly stupid, but here goes nothing,” he said, as he strode over towards his classmate and climbed on his back. For all the muscle he didn’t have, he clung surprisingly tight to Iida. And he was right, it looked absolutely ridiculous and it would do so even more in a minute.
“Not interested in the rules this time?” Shouta asked with a smirk tugging at his lips.
Shinsou’s eyes grew marginally wider.
“Get from start to finish…?” he sounded hopeful. Such a shame Shouta had to bury that hope. Such a shame indeed.
Shouta straightened his posture, held his phone in front of his face and cleared his throat in a sudden urge for theatrics.
“Students are to stay within their assigned lanes. Students are to start from the ground behind the starting line and only after the starting signal is given.” he read from his phone. (He didn’t. Instead he glanced around the phone to see Shinsou’s face fall into a frown.)
“You’re kidding right?” the kid asked, still clinging to Iida who seemed entirely nonplussed by all of this. “How is that even supposed to work for people who don’t have a corporeal form or something?”
Shouta lowered his phone and shrugged. “I don’t make the rules, kid.” — He absolutely did.
Well, not these. The ones he’d been reading were the actual rules from the tests for middle schoolers. And Shinsou had a point. But they were here to overcome unfairness, right? And Shinsou was already well on his way in that regard. Anyway, back to his students.
Shinsou groaned into Iida’s back who still didn’t react—Shinsou really had a strong handle on the quirk, huh?—and let go with one leg to plant it firmly on the ground. With his hold now weakened, he fastened the grip in his arms even more.
And yes, he very much did look ridiculous. Even more so, when Shouta gave the starting signal and Iida shot out of his position, racing fifty meters in even less time that he’d taken for his own try with blue flames shooting out of his exhaust pipes, and Shinsou fluttering behind him like sad bunting. He definitely looked most ridiculous though, when Iida abruptly stopped right when he had crossed the finish line and Shinsou’s body caught up with that of his carrier in a spectacular crash. Well, they weren’t here to look good. Not literally. Maybe the Aoyama kid was.
As much fun as Shouta had with this, he was also still very much paying close attention to every detail he could absorb about Shinsou’s quirk. And by the looks of it, the other problem child was as well.
Both of them noticed a change in Iida’s behavior immediately after the crash. He seemed alive again, for lack of a better word. Where he was just waiting for input before, he was now actively looking around again to assess the situation. A situation he was very much not pleased with if judged correctly by the scolding he was giving Shinsou. Something along the lines of being used.
“Alright. Enough of that. On to the next one, grip strength.” Let’s test out his quirk a little further. “Shinsou. You’re first this time.”
Shouta smirked into his capture scarf when the student’s face morphed into one of pure betrayal.
“Fine. What are the rules.”
This time, Shouta had looked up the rules beforehand. “Only one hand,” he drawled in fake disinterest, as Shinsou’s face fell even further.
Oh yes, Shouta had noticed him glancing towards Shouji before. The boy had an interesting mutation type quirk that allowed him to replicate other parts of his body on the ends of the tentacle like protrusions on his arms. He was currently using at least four hands, two eyes, three ears and one mouth, as Shinsou approached him. The eyes on his face were fixated on the purple-haired boy, but Shouta had no doubt the other two were glancing towards Uraraka and Iida.
“Hey, you, squidward! Wanna help me with this?”
Shouji demeanor didn’t change much, but he risked a glance at Shouta. And of course Shouta could stop this. But on the other hand, Shouji could always just say no himself. And if he couldn’t, well that would be another piece of the puzzle that was Shinsou’s quirk.
Shouji returned to look at his classmate and shook his head. Or, he tried to. Shouji hadn’t said much since the beginning of the day so him answering non-verbally was perfectly normal. But the fact that he didn’t even complete one head shake before his eyes glazed over was a little concerning. So apparently Shinsou didn’t need permission in the first place and, second, the reaction of his victims didn’t have to be verbal. Which...yeah, that was a powerful quirk.
Shouta could hear the student mutter under his breath as he got out of his training jacket. “Stupid rule,” he grit out, as he wrapped the jacket around his right hand. “Eight hands would have been so useful. But no!”
He glared at his teacher when he got the measuring device, Shouta was holding out for him, and strode back to Shouji who still looked like the world around him didn’t exist. They positioned themselves and Shouji morphed one of his appendages into…a mouth of all things?
Shouta took pride in the fact that he wasn’t easily startled. But god damn it Midoriya, where did you come from all of a sudden? He hadn’t noticed the boy approach at all. Either his senses faded. Which, okay, fair. He was only 30 but maybe that’s when things took a turn. Or Midoriya had a talent for stealth. Shouta hoped for the latter.
“What do you mean, oooh?”
Midoriya took out a notebook from God knows where and opened it to a page in the later half, a picture of Shouji covering one page, scribbles covering the other.
“He’s only allowed to use one hand, right? But Shouji can make different things on his arms. And the human jaw is pretty strong.”
Midoriya added the strategy he’d just discovered to his notes, careful to not put any unnecessary strain on his broken finger.
In observing his analytical student, Shouta missed the display in front of him. His head only snapped back when he heard the shout of “Ah, fuck!” across the gym and Shinsou shaking his hand violently.
“Language,” he muttered towards his student. “Are you badly hurt?” he asked in a more gentle tone.
“No. Didn’t break the skin. But fuuuu—fudge, I’m not doing that again,” Shinsou replied, as he handed over the measuring device. 112 kg of pressure. Well, that was certainly something. Shouta wasn’t sure if Shinsou considered that acceptable, considering the bruises forming on his hands. But he had done well.
“Why didn’t you just let Shouji do it?” Midoriya asked. And how the hell did he appear again beside Shouta without him noticing a thing?
“Wasn’t sure whether it would count if I didn’t do anything myself,” he answered, rubbing his neck with his uninjured hand.
“It counted for the ball throw, though,” Midoriya replied with his eyebrows furrowed in confusion.
Shinsou stopped mid-movement, his eyes wide, and stared at Shouta incredulously. Sure enough, the ball throw had counted. The ball registered for Shinsou was thrown and he didn’t break any of the rules. Honestly, whoever wrote those rules originally was an idiot for allowing this sort of thing. But then again, Shinsou was probably the only one who was able to get the help of others. And quirks weren’t allowed in middle school anyway.
So yes, Shinsou could have avoided the pain. But maybe it was good to know, to what lengths he was willing to go. If he wouldn’t do it on the regular, this was fine.
Shouta smirked and walked away, ready to observe the next student’s attempt at the test.
When Shinsou and Midoriya started talking again, though, he strained his ears. Years of underground hero experience allowed him to mentally zero in on individual conversations and tune out his surroundings. He watched the rest of the tests, but his attention was behind him.
“So what‘s your quirk?“ Shinsou asked angrily.
“S-superpower,” Midoriya answered with less confidence then what he had displayed before.
“Really. Must have been nice being able to just punch robots left and right.”
After all these years, the entrance exam still consisted of beating robots and of course students with non-physical quirks were still at a huge disadvantage. Shouta could tell you a thing or two about it. Being bitter didn’t solve anything, but he could not fault Shinsou for it.
How exactly had the purple-haired boy passed the exam by the way?
Shouta furrowed his brows as he tried to remember.
He had been standing at the back of the observation deck so visibility wasn’t the best. But he did remember seeing Shinsou in Ground Beta together with another purple-haired boy. A tiny kid with balls for hair who somehow managed to scare off anyone before the exam had even begun.
Ah. Right. Shouta had repressed that memory before. The tiny one had been obnoxious towards any female student who so much as came into a ten meter radius around him. And when he wouldn’t stop harassing one particular female examinee, Shinsou had taken pity and, with what Shouta now assumed was some kind of brainwashing quirk, got the kid to stop.
If he remembered correctly, he even got rescue points for that.
And then Shinsou had held the tiny one in front of him, spinning around while balls-for-hair threw the balls from his head at any robot in sight, stopping them dead in their tracks. Because apparently him having balls for hair was not, in fact, the main aspect of the quirk. Go figure.
Shinsou had had a lot of completely immobilized robots to pick apart afterwards and made just enough points to join the ranks of future heroes. And now he had to deal with Shouta. The teacher smirked.
“—only got through with rescue points by taking down the zero pointer when Uraraka was in danger.”
Shinsou sounded a little unbelieving when he responded. “How…How’d you do that?”
“You know. Punched it. A little too hard.”
“You punched it too hard? Did you…break any bones then too?”
“So yes. How many?”
Midoriya exhaled in a world-weary sigh. “Both of my legs and one arm.”
If Shouta could see Shinsou, he was sure the boy would be rapidly losing the color in his face right about now. At least that was the reaction many of the observers of the exam had shown. And they were pro heroes, used to injuries. But Midoriya was something else entirely.
“Gee. That’s good to know.”
“I...I was gonna use you to get a good score in the standing long jump. But knowing that shit now, I’d rather not.”
Shouta nodded to himself in approval. There was a fine line for mental manipulation quirks like his. And apparently Shinsou was well aware of that line and careful not to cross it. He wouldn’t’ use other people when it could hurt them or hinder their chances. (Except for the balls-for-hair-kid, but oh well.)
“Your quirk is some kind of brainwashing right?”
“What’s it to you?” Shinsou asked with anger audibly spilling out of him. Sore topic, then. Good to know.
“Oh, I think that’s amazing! You can be such a cool hero with that! Helping to get people out of a panic, or stopping villains, or directing people in doing something they themselves don’t know how to do!”
Shouta turned to look over his shoulder and found himself with the sight of a stunned and possibly almost crying Shinsou as well as Midoriya, fists in front of his chest, and staring at his classmate with eyes radiating glee like sunlight.
The kid then cocked his head to the side, placed his hands in front of his face, index fingers perched on his lips, and started spouting words a mile a minute. It took a moment for Shouta to mentally brace himself to actually get the meaning behind the word-waterfall.
“—activate it when someone responds to you. No need to be verbal, a nod is enough. Also, I think the brainwashing is broken when they are—“
He was interrupted quickly with Shinsou’s hand covering his mouth. “Dude!”
“Sorry, sorry! I just…I like analyzing quirks,” Midoriya said, his face flushing rapidly.
“Huh. So what’s her quirk?” Shinsou asked, gesturing to Yaoyorozu who was catching her breath some distance away.
“I’m not sure yet. She shows signs of exhaustion, so I think she creates objects from some kind of resource in her body.”
Midoriya awkwardly shrugged. „Pretty sure. She created skates for the dash and a literal canon for the ball throw.”
“Going Plus Ultra?”
“I guess. Although I think creating that canon might have been a little overkill. Especially considering how much of the tests were left at that point.”
Yep, Midoriya liked analyzing and he was good at it. And Shouta would do his darndest to foster that interest. Because as much as he was able to train their physical form, training mental capabilities was much harder.
But for now…
“That took too long. Hurry up,” he drawled, glancing towards Uraraka and Iida whispering to each other, no doubt figuring out Shinsou’s quirk for themselves.
“Alright, sit-ups next. Choose a partner to hold down your feet.”
“Dibs on the frog girl!”
She cut off mid-sound and apparently Shinsou wasn’t even trying to be stealthy anymore while brainwashing his peers. He turned towards Shouta, no doubt awaiting rule clarifications and just grinned like a maniac. Nope, not stealthy at all.
“Feet on the ground, hands behind your head. And you have to touch the mat and your knees for it to count. Got it?”
“Sure sure,” he responded while cracking his knuckles, the grin still firmly stapled to his face.
Shouta handed Midoriya a stopwatch and made his rounds to hand out the others.
“You each have one minute.”
What he came back to honestly shouldn’t have surprised him as much as it did.
Midoriya was holding the stop watch with one eyebrow raised and Shinsou was doing sit-ups. Had sit-ups being done for him? He certainly wasn’t doing anything himself. Asui had her tongue wrapped around his upper torso and was lifting him time and again staring right ahead without a care in the world. Her mouth hang open, allowing her tongue to move freely and—
“My ankle feels wet and I’m pretty sure it shouldn’t.”
Shouta studied Midoriya, as the boy, with some kind of morbid fascination, watched another drop of drool leave Asui’s mouth and make its way towards Shinsou’s leg in slow motion.
Shinsou scrunched his face, when he felt it arrive, intently staring at the ceiling when he was lifted from the mat again.
“Midoriya, how much time left?” he asked mid sit-up.
Midoriya started, awakening from some kind of dream that Shouta didn’t want to know about.
“Uh, 20 seconds. Almost done.”
The green-haired kid shook his head as if to shake out a thought that had occurred to him and moved beside the pair, waving his hand in front of Asui’s face.
“Does she not see or hear us at all?”
“Oh,” Midoriya replied, quickly pulling back his hand. “Sorry, Asui.”
Shinsou completed a few more sit-ups until he reached 73 and Midoriya gave the stopping signal. Asui unwrapped her tongue and stored it safely away inside her mouth, carefully wiping her mouth.
“Call me Tsu.”
“Oh, sorry A—Tsu!”
The girl nodded and strode off, not even looking at Shinsou who in turn looked at his ankle in disgust. Shouta had to agree, it didn’t look particularly appealing, but Shinsou had brought that upon himself. The kid let his arms rest on his knees and buried his head in between them.
“Midoriya, you looked like you had another thought about her quirk. Anything important?”
“Oh right. You should probably wash that off.”
Shinsou’s head snapped towards his classmate, his eyes wide with worry. “Huh?”
“I don’t know what kind of frog Asui is. But some of them segregate neurotoxins through their skin. I don’t know about their saliva, though.”
Shinsou almost faceplanted with how fast he tried to get up. But he managed and scrambled for the bathrooms. Shouta suppressed the urge to grin. Nope, this wasn’t fun. At all. Definitely wasn’t the most entertaining first day he’d ever had. Not at all.
He shook his head in disbelief and tapped on his phone, registering the results the students reported to him.
The seated toe-touch was next and Shinsou wasn’t back yet.
“Alright, let’s start. Seated toe-touch. You know how it goes. Try not to overstretch,” he instructed and nineteen students gave their affirmative.
They each moved to their respective places and started the exercise on their own until, finally, Shinsou returned. His pant legs were soaking wet as if he’d been trudging through knee-high water to get here. Shouta raised an eyebrow at him but the kid just shook his head.
“Alright then. Get it over with. We don’t have all day.”
Shinsou looked through the list of potential candidates a.k.a. glanced around the people who were finished already and could help him cheat. He settled on Sero, clearing his throat loudly and tapping Sero on the shoulder.
Seriously. First lesson after this would be situational awareness. How was anyone still falling for this?
Anyway. Sero was following Shinsou to where he intended to perform his attempt and then started to tape the tips of Shinsou's fingers to his toes. And yeah, that wouldn’t do.
Shouta walked the few feet between them and let Erasure flare up, freeing Sero from his stupor with ease. The kid rubbed his temples as he got up. Shinsou on the other hand winced when he noticed the stern look Shouta was giving him.
“I can see that you didn’t put much effort into training your body—which we will work on, by the way—but even you should know that that’s not how you’re supposed to stretch. This will damage your body. Don’t. Try without quirk.”
Shouta was about to turn around again, when Shinsou cleared his throat. He looked over his shoulder.
“Uh, sensei? Could you maybe, you know, untie me?”
Shouta groaned and rolled his eyes theatrically as he pulled out his knife and cut open Sero’s tape.
“Not your brightest idea. Now get it over with,” he said, straightening out again. It’s not like he hadn’t done stupid shit in high school. They were here to learn after all.
And Shinsou didn’t even do that badly, all things considered. He didn’t look like much, strength-wise, but his flexibility was nothing to be ashamed of.
Surprisingly enough, when it came to the repeated side step test, Shinsou, the last to have to compete, appeared in front of Shouta without any of his classmates in tow.
“Quirk exhaustion?” Shouta asked.
“Nah, just not in the mood.”
Shouta raised an eyebrow but let the topic rest. Had this been the first thing Shinsou said to him that day, he would’ve expelled him on the spot for not taking any of this seriously. But he’d shown wits and a certain, if unsettling, kind of ingenuity and Shouta had already made the decision to keep this tired child.
He gave the starting signal and, in a shocking turn of events, Shinsou managed on his own perfectly fine, stepping from side to side with astounding speed. He wasn’t using his quirk but his agility was better than what he had others believe after all, placing him just above average compared to the rest of his class for this particular test.
“I’m not a one-trick-pony, sensei,” Shinsou said with a confidence Shouta hadn’t heard from him all day before.
“Good,” Shouta replied without the faintest trace of emotion on his face but something like pride swelling up in his chest. “Show that to me on the standing long jump test then, kid.”
They walked over to the sandpit and Shinsou, possibly fueled by his sudden confidence boost or just stupid enough to try the test without seeing the most compatible classmate, stood on the starting line first.
“Could you tell me the rules please, Aizawa-sensei?” he asked, clearly enunciating every word with a smirk dancing around his mouth.
Shouta groaned and pulled out his phone. “Fine. The student—”
“Yeah yeah, I know,” Shinsou drawled his interruption. Or at least that was what it supposedly sounded like to the other nineteen students watching with barely contained interest. To Shouta it marked the beginning of some very frustrating moments, Shinsou’s reply only being a distraction from having brainwashed him , his teacher !
You little shit , he thought, just as a sentence reached his brain telepathically in Shinsou’s voice. So that’s how it worked.
“Without looking at me, wrap your capture weapon around my waist and hover me over the sand pit in an arc, slowly, and set me down five feet behind the pit.”
And Shouta did . At first, he fought the urge to comply with all his will (And believe you him, he had a lot of that. Staying awake for days on end was a finely honed skill that needed precise control of his own will, after all.) but to no avail, Shinsou quirk had taken hold and Shouta had no way of getting out without being bumped into by someone or erasing the quirk. Which, to Shinsou’s credit, the kid had shut down immediately with the right phrasing of his command.
So Shouta let his head fall, studying the pebbles around his feet, and activated Erasure to let his capture weapon shoot forwards to where Shinsou still stood and waited. He heard a surprised yelp, when the scarf wrapped around the brat’s torso with much more force than necessary (none of Shinsou’s words said to be gentle after all). And just like Shinsou had ordered, Shouta lifted him off the ground and moved him across the pit in a slow arc.
For a moment Shouta wondered what the benefit would be to doing this slowly instead of just getting it over it, but just that very second the electricity kid, Kaminari he thought, snorted and several other followed suit. Shinsou was doing something and Shouta, infuriatingly, had no clue what they were laughing at.
“I don’t get it,” someone asked.
“Yeah, I don’t either,” one of the girls chimed in. Ashido maybe. “The meditating monk made sense.” What?
“And the ballerina did too.” The WHAT ?
“Some kind of flying pose?”
Shouta heard something that sounded suspiciously like a facepalm then, before another voice went on. “Have none of you idiots ever read fucking Superman? Tsk. And you wanna be heroes. Dream on, extras.”
“I for one do not condone this behavior at all. He shouldn’t be taking advantage of Aizawa-sensei’s quirk like that, let alone any of his classmate’s. That is shameful behavior for a future hero.”
God bless you Iida for your pure heart, but also: Not helpful.
Shinsou reached the end of the arc at that point and Shouta, call him petty but Shinsou deserved it, floated him to a horizontal position before unwrapping his capture weapon. He hadn’t specified to be gentle when putting him down either.
Yelping once again, when he hit the ground, Shinsou lost the grip on his quirk and Shouta regained control of his muscles, a sense of relief washing over him from feeling like himself again.
A few phones were hastily stashed in pockets when he lifted his head to look at his students with an unimpressed grimace. Kaminari might actually still be recording, if the way he tried to hide his arms behind one of his classmates was anything to go by. Well in that case, Shouta just won’t give them what they were clearly waiting for.
He cleared his throat and turned towards Shinsou, who was in the process of patting down his pants to get the sand out. “Thanks, sensei,” he said when he finished and noticed Shouta staring at him, still confident but much more careful of the wrath that might be coming his way. Good.
“Alright, next,” Shouta instructed, the result measured by the bot reaching his phone, and several students blinked when they realized that nothing more would be happening.
The results flew in quickly after that until only one test remained between Shouta and his much needed nap. Shinsou came over to him once everyone was done and in the process of walking over to the track for the endurance test.
“Any rules I should be aware of?”
Shouta side-eyed him, a little bit put off by the lack of fear in Shinsou’s eyes and also wary of more brainwashing. But Erasure wouldn’t be of much use for Shinsou for this task and so he sighed and began scanning the rules sheet for anything important.
“Stay in motion and within the limits, basically.”
“Gotcha!” he exclaimed, running off into the crowd to brainwash god-knows-who.
So Shouta didn’t expect him to stop suddenly, emerging from the group of students as everyone moved past him, with his head tilted and sporting a deep frown.
“You tried Yaoyorozu, right? What did you tell her to produce?”
Shouta barely managed to hide his full body flinch at that. Good question Midoriya, but also how in the world are you so silent ?
Not turning around to Midoriya and Shouta walking up to him, Shinsou shrugged. “A segway.”
Both teacher and student behind him snorted and caught up with him a moment later.
“Why didn’t it work?”
Another shrug. “Guess she just doesn’t know how to build one.”
“Oh,” Midoriya exclaimed, pulling out his notebook again and opening the page for Shinsou which he had already filled with a rather detailed drawing and a plethora of facts about the brainwashing teen. “Brainwashing broken if task impossible. Right. Also—” He turned several pages, now resting on Yaoyorozu’s double page. “—can only produce things she knows. Other limiting factors may apply.”
Shouta had hoped Shinsou wouldn’t find another victim for this final task, the endurance being something he would need later anyway, but alas his classmates were still naive enough to respond to him and so it only came as a mild surprise when he found Shinsou firmly grappled on Satou’s back on the starting line when he gave the starting signal.
At least Satou on sugar was a good choice for endurance with the kid not burning the calories by doing anything offensive in the meantime. Still, a packet of sugar only lasts so long and so about halfway into the test, Shouta could see Satou reduce his pace. The kid still clearly under Shinsou’s influence, Shouta suspected this to be caused by actual exhaustion rather than to spite the dead weight on his back.
Shinsou, noticing Satou’s condition as well, started looking around, probably to look for another victim. The one he found was not what Shouta had been expecting to see today, but he took it with a smirk hidden in his capture weapon.
“Hey, sparkler boy!” Shinsou addressed his victim who was running not far off, both of them a little behind the leaders. “Are you too wea—”
He didn’t even get to finish his insult; Bakugou was already in his face after the first sentence. “What the fuck did you just call me, eyeba—”
“Now now, that’s not nice,” Shinsou chided, waving his index finger in front of Bakugou and sticking out his tongue.
Shouta couldn’t hear any more actual conversation after this, he just saw Shinsou being grabbed by Bakugou and carried around the track, bridal style. Again, not a bad choice with Bakugou having a quirk with intense backlash originating from his hands which meant he’d have at least decent arm strength.
The whole ordeal told Shouta three things.
One, Shinsou could control more than one person at a time. Satou was only freed from the quirk once Shinsou was safely deposited in Bakugou’s arms.
Two, Shinsou did absolutely not care what people thought of him. Shouta watched as he pulled out his phone and took a selfie with a scowling Bakugou carrying him and, supposedly, immediately posting it to some social media network or a group chat.
Three, Bakugou operated on pride alone if he had to. Much the same way as Satou Shouta could see the kid losing stamina soon after extra weight had been added to his arms. But he didn’t slow down, instead gritting his teeth and even increasing his tempo. He would not lose to his classmates even with the disadvantage of having to carry someone. And Shouta would not save Shinsou from Bakugou’s wrath after this was over.
Turns out, having Bakugou react to insults from Shinsou was an easy enough way to deal with the explosive teen. And so Shouta was able to wrap up the quirk apprehension test without much more effort. Contrary to his own belief he didn’t expel anyone that day. That wasn’t to say he wouldn’t do so in the future, but as it stood every one of them had given their all (apart from being too naive), and for once Shouta could actually pull the ‘logical ruse’ card on his students.
As expected, some of them had suspected something but the majority had fallen for it. Shinsou in particular didn’t seem impressed with him.
“Why did he make me show off my quirk to everyone. Ugh. So much for the sports festival, I guess,” Shouta could hear him say.
“Actually,” Midoriya started, once again appearing out of nowhere beside his classmate. “If you planned on brainwashing Aizawa-sensei anyway, why didn’t you just make him change your scores on his phone before he announced them.”
Something broke in Shinsou then. He froze and stared at Midoriya, blinking, while his brain tried to reboot.
Midoriya shrugged. “Yeah, he said the one with the lowest overall score would be going home. But he technically never said anything about changing the scores after the respective tests.”
The following rant, graphically embellished with a plethora of curse words, most of which Shouta had never actually heard before, made him snort into his capture weapon before he turned around to leave the class to do whatever.
Before Shinsou could go home for the day, Shouta caught him in the hallway, in the process of acquiring iced coffee from a vending machine.
“Good job today, kiddo,” he said with a nod.
“Oh. Thanks, I guess,” Shinsou replied, rubbing his neck sheepishly with one hand. ”Didn’t actually think I’d make it this far, to be honest.”
“But you did. So if you need any help with training, let me know. I might know a thing or two about non-physical quirks.”
Shinsou snorted and promptly began the process of buying a second coffee. Oh mood, kid.
“Thanks for the offer. Here,” he said, handing over the second coffee to a bewildered Shouta who hadn’t expected it. “Take it, you’ll need it with a class like us.”
A manic grin spread over his face before he slurped his own coffee, turned around and walked away. “See you tomorrow, sensei!”
Oh right, Shouta would have to actually teach these kids this year, wouldn’t he? Oh, they would cost him so much sleep. Why in the world did he agree to becoming a teacher?