Title: Vigilante Tendency
Summary: There's such a thing as being too much like the 1st generation. Tsuna didn't mean to start a vigilante group, but somehow it happened anyway. Well done, "Neo Primo," well done.
Notes: Edited 5/24/2013
In some ways, Tsuna was entirely too much like his honorable ancestor, Sawada Ieyasu, nee Giotto, once Vongola Primo, and once just an ordinary boy who one day decided to start a vigilante group.
Or more precisely, one day he got forced into starting a vigilante group by his very pushy friends.
Tsuna didn't exactly mean to start a vigilante group either, but no one asked his opinion on the matter. His friends were very pushy too.
Very "extreme," you might say.
It started like this.
There was a girl in Tsuna's class that was like the sun. In Tsuna's opinion.
Her name was Sasagawa Kyoko. She smiled at him every morning and helped him up when he tripped. When he skinned his knee, again, she placed a band-aide with sunflowers on it and kissed his cheek.
Tsuna was in love.
So when he saw Kyoko get dragged away on her way home, by some boys from the local middle school, Tsuna knew he had to be a man like his useless dad was always telling him.
But even as he gathered all his courage, Tsuna didn't really know what to do. Trying to think of something, anything, he followed after them, clutching at the straps of his backpack.
"We're gonna show that punk!" they were laughing among themselves. "We'll teach him not to mess with us!"
The him in question arrived shortly — Kyoko's older brother, Ryohei.
"Onii-san!" Kyoko cried out, tears of fear in her eyes.
"You better take your beating quietly, you brat, or the girl gets it," one of the older boys threatened, shaking Kyoko and making her cry out.
Ryohei howled something derogatory as two of the middle schoolers made their way toward him, but Tsuna wasn't listening. This was it. This was the moment to act. Even if his legs were shaking so badly he could barely stand, Tsuna charged at the older boy still holding Kyoko.
Slipping his school bag off his shoulders, Tsuna swung it with all his might. Filled with books and notes, it hit the bully in the chest with enough force to knock the breath from his lungs and startle him into releasing Kyoko.
"Run!" Tsuna yelled, even as the middle schooler he had attacked recovered enough to lunge for Tsuna instead, growling angrily. "Run, Kyoko-chan!"
With tears in her eyes, Kyoko ran.
Seeing his sister escape, Ryohei was all too happy to give as good as he got. He still got quite a beating and a new scar to show for it, but he was remarkably cheerful as he pulled an equally bruised and battered Tsuna to his feet.
"That was very extreme of you!" Ryohei praised him, ruffling Tsuna's hair. "When I start a boxing club, you can be the first member!"
Kyoko patched them up afterwards, still sniffling a little, but determined to help however she could. She had also, wisely, gone to get an adult, who was all too happy to bring some justice down on the three middle school students who had thought beating up two kids was a good way to spend their time.
"I told you fighting is bad, Onii-san," she scolded her brother.
"Sometimes a man has to fight, to protect what he loves," Tsuna mumbled. It was another of his useless dad's comments, but at the moment Tsuna was feeling a bit more charitable toward the man than usual.
Even if he had gotten beaten up, at least Kyoko was talking to him. So maybe there was something to all that "a man must be brave and bold!" stuff Iemitsu liked to spout so much.
"That right! You said it, Sawada!" Ryohei agreed. "It's okay, Kyoko. I promise, from now on, I'll only fight to protect!"
Kyoko huffed, a little bit of red tinging her cheeks as she glanced at Tsuna. She didn't protest any further.
She ran out of sunflower band-aides before they were through, but she gave Tsuna some nice lion-print ones instead, and a smile that shone like the sun.
"This town used to shine like the sun!" Giotto said, long ago. That was his reason for fighting.
Overall, it seemed like having too much sun involved led to these kinds of situations. Sunny, with a chance of vigilantism.
Tsuna would have been happy to leave it at that — sharing lunch with Kyoko at school, working together whenever they needed a partner, having Ryohei walk them both home, filling the air with his energetic chatter.
Except that Ryohei now thought of Tsuna as his comrade in arms, or something. A fellow man, bound together by the unbreakable tie of having gotten beaten up together. So one otherwise peaceful day, Ryohei suddenly appeared during lunch and, without so much as a word of explanation, dragged Tsuna off.
"Onii-san! Wait! What's going on?" Tsuna protested, struggling to keep up with Ryohei's long — for a kid — strides.
"I saw some guys from two classes up doing some really unextreme things in the courtyard!" Ryohei explained. "We're going to stop them Sawada!"
"Wait, why am I involved?" Tsuna whimpered.
They had reached the courtyard, where Tsuna could see a group of older boys crowding around something — or rather someone, curled up on the ground in a fetal position.
Ryohei turned to face Tsuna, clapping his hands on the younger boy's shoulders and looking him straight in the eye. "Because we are extreme men," he said gravely, as if that was some kind of explanation.
Then, with a roar, he charged at the bullies.
Tsuna didn't bother even trying to help. He couldn't fight at all, and Ryohei was more than a match for a few elementary school kids. Instead, Tsuna hurried over to the unfortunate victim. It was a boy about Tsuna's age or maybe a year older, with short red-brown hair and dark eyes. He was trying to hold together a pair of broken glasses and clutching something to his chest.
"Come on, let's get out of here," Tsuna said, helping him to his feet.
Kyoko had, again, wisely, gone to get a teacher. Then, with a sigh, she pulled out her first aid supplies and began to patch up their rescuee's wounds, which were fortunately largely superficial.
His name was Irie Shoichi and he was a year above Kyoko and Tsuna, though in a different class than Ryohei. He liked robots and machines in general, and was rather smart, which got him in trouble with the bullies. Usually, he just went along with whatever they wanted, like Tsuna tended to, but this time they had wanted to take away the new robot he had brought with him, and Shoichi just couldn't let that happened.
It was, he explained, very expensive and sent to him from overseas by his online friend.
"Thank you, really," Shoichi said, pushing up the glasses they had mostly managed to tape back together. "I don't know what I would've done if you hadn't helped me."
"We were extremely happy to do it!" Ryohei yelled, pumping his fist in the air. Tsuna just cringed away, more than a little embarrassed by the whole situation. At least Shoichi's gratitude softened Kyoko's own annoyance at them for getting into another fight.
"Do you… make a habit of this?" Shoichi asked. "Fighting bullies and stuff?"
"No, we really don't," Tsuna tried to say.
"Yes!" Ryohei called out loudly, completely drowning out Tsuna's reply. "That is an extreme idea! We will extremely do that!"
"Onii-san!" Kyoko protested.
"We will protect the other kids, Kyoko!" Ryohei insisted. "Isn't that a good thing?"
"Well, I suppose…" Kyoko agreed, uncertainly.
Shoichi glanced down at the robot in his arms and, swallowing heavily, seemed to come to a decision. "I'll help too," he said. "I can't fight, but I'll help in any way I can."
"Extreme!" Ryohei hollered.
And that's how it began.
Notably, no one asked Tsuna's opinion.
Namimori was a small town. There were only so many bullies to beat up, in the end. So it was inevitable that one day the two strongest bully-hunters would cross paths.
Hibari arrived second. Taking one look at the brawl, already winding down with Ryohei once again emerging victorious, he pulled out his tonfas and attacked.
"For disturbing the peace, I will bite you to death," Hibari announced as Ryohei just barely dodged his first strike.
"We're the ones protecting the peace!" Ryohei shot back.
"You're a herbivore. I am the one who protects this town," Hibari said.
"I'm a man fighting to protect, to the extreme!" Ryohei refused to back down.
Tsuna, who had been helping the bullied little boy retrieve his book from the tree it had been thrown into, tried to intervene at this point. "Um, Onii-san…"
Predictably, he was ignored.
Feeling put out, Tsuna momentarily considered just letting them fight it out. But... Kyoko-chan would be sad, if Ryohei got beat up that much. Hibari Kyoya was already gaining quite a reputation, mostly for taking on even adults — criminals no less — and coming out victorious.
So instead, Tsuna reached into his pocket and pulled out the device Shoichi had given him. It had started out as a gag hand buzzer — a small round toy that could be hidden in the palm of the hand and gave a tiny shock then the button on the other side was pressed, for example during a handshake.
Under Shoichi's excited experimentation, it became a handheld taser with a rather respectable output.
Shoichi had actually made two, for dual wielding purposes.
Putting on his best harmless small animal expression, Tsuna turned to the escalating battle between the two self-proclaimed protectors of Namimori.
"Hibari-san! Please stop!" Tsuna cried, running toward them.
Hibari hesitated for a moment. He was still young and hadn't quite learned to regard everyone and everything with suspicion. He barely reacted as Tsuna's small hand closed over his arm, as if trying to stop him from driving his tonfa into Ryohei's face.
The taser activated on contact, shocking Hibari with enough voltage to make him sway helplessly, barely able to remain on his feet.
"Sawada! That was not extreme at all!" Ryohei protested. "We're having a duel, as two extreme men!"
"What will Kyoko say?" Tsuna shot back, with a precision strike. "You promised to fight only to protect! What are you protecting, your pride? A man needs to know when to not fight too!"
Tsuna's useless dad had said that when his mom had turned to him with pleading eyes and asked to let her dress up Tsuna in that very cute bunny costume. Tsuna had also turned pleading eyes toward him, hoping for some solidarity between men, only to be completely betrayed as Iemitsu laughed awkwardly and delivered that particular bit of wisdom.
"B-but…" Ryohei flailed helplessly. "But I'm fighting for my right to fight to protect!" he finally managed.
Tsuna was not impressed. "If you and Hibari both want to protect the town, you should work together," he said. "I'm sure it'll be okay if you're his… subordinate."
When Tsuna turned toward him, Hibari scowled. "I'll bite you to death," he promised, a little blearily. He tried to raise his tonfas, only to stumble, his balance still off.
Tsuna reached out to steady him — completely forgetting the taser still in his palm. The second shock was enough to make Hibari groan and collapse.
"He's the leader?" Ryohei wondered, looking at Hibari, now on the ground, without concern, but rather dubiously. "How come?"
"Because he's older than us, and stronger," Tsuna said. What he really meant was that Hibari would never follow anyone else, and he'd beat them up for just suggesting it.
"But you beat him," Ryohei said, scratching his head.
Tsuna felt something cold brush down his spine. It might have been a premonition of the chaos and suffering those words would cause.
It might have been Hibari's basilisk glare.
As had become her habit, Kyoko arrived with an authority figure and first aid supplies. The unfortunate policeman she had managed to snag stopped short as he caught sight of Hibari's prone figure. He began to sweat heavily in fear, and he appeared all too happy to drag off the bullies, who had been playing dead, off to be reprimanded.
Ryohei and Hibari didn't even seem to notice.
"Sawada is very extreme! I'll gladly follow him!" Ryohei was insisting. True to form, Ryohei had completely turned a few apparently innocuous comments into some kind of completely bizarre plan of action that only he could possibly support.
"I don't follow anyone," Hibari repeated, refusing to budge.
"It's fine, isn't it? Hibari can be the leader," Tsuna tried to make his opinion known. As before, he was completely ignored.
"Hibari-san wants to be the leader?" Kyoko asked, rather confused, as she tried to figure out what was going on. "I'm surprised. It doesn't seem like something he would enjoy. Being the leader just means you have to talk to people a lot and do diplomatic things, right? Like a class president."
Hibari turned to regard her thoughtfully. Tsuna realized he had been stabbed in the back from the angle he had least expected.
"…Very well. I will leave those herbivore duties to you," Hibari decided. His eyes narrowed. "But I will still bite you to death, for possession of unauthorized weaponry."
And so their group grew.
While Hibari never precisely joined, as such, he still apparently counted toward their group membership total, which had reached five.
"Come on, aren't you guys taking this too seriously?" Tsuna tried to say. "I mean, we're not like a real group or anything."
Truthfully, he was just sick of mediating Ryohei and Hibari's prolonged arguments about who would patrol where. Kyoko's only contribution had been to insist on lunch and dinner breaks. Shoichi, usually Tsuna's ally in common sense, had gotten caught up too, drawing out an entire map of Namimori and providing little figurines to mark the members of their group and the gathering places of known peace-disturbers.
Kyoko hummed thoughtfully. "That's true. We don't even have a name yet," she agreed. Except that wasn't Tsuna's point at all. "We should choose one. Tsuna-kun, you're the leader, what do you think we should be called?"
"H-huh? Me?" Tsuna stammered, never expecting that turn in the conversation. "I don't know. What about you guys?"
"Well, it should have Namimori in the name," Shoichi said reasonably.
"I think something that mentions peace would be nice," Kyoko added earnestly. "That's what we're fighting for, after all."
"The Disciplinary Committee," Hibari said, from his position pointedly away from the rest of them.
"The Boxing Club!" Ryohei roared.
"Denied!" Tsuna cut him off. "We're not a club, and you're the only one who does boxing!"
That, of course, led to another spirited attempt by Ryohei to recruit Tsuna into his as of yet not existent Boxing Club.
In the end, they became the Peaceful Namimori Committee. Originally, it was supposed to be the Committee for Peaceful Life in Namimori, but the others quickly changed it when Tsuna suddenly burst into bitter tears at what he felt was the terrible joke the world at large was playing on him.
Unfortunately, Tsuna did not learn from that experience. He still did not quite understand the true, inescapable nature of his situation.
"We can't keep meeting like this," Tsuna tried once more to make his friends see sense. "Look, we're all going to get sick meeting out in the cold."
Winter had come to Namimori, the air now cold enough to make their breath mist as they gathered at the now abandoned playground.
"Maybe we can meet at the school," Kyoko offered. She was cold too, trying to warm her hands by breathing on them.
"School grounds are off limits after school hours," Hibari said, from over by the slide.
"We need a club room," Ryohei agreed, nodding knowingly.
Tsuna thought that what they really needed was to give up on this nonsense and go home. But… on the other hand, he wouldn't get to see Kyoko as often, so he hesitated, biting his lip.
"How about someone's house?" Shoichi suggested reasonably.
"Waste of time, herding back and forth," Hibari shot him down.
"There's nowhere we could meet that would be close to your patrol routes," Tsuna said, a bit exasperated. "They're all through the bad parts of town! What do you suggest we do, take over some gang's turf?"
He shouldn't have said anything.
Hibari looked thoughtful. It was a bad sign.
"If you were gonna do dojo-yaburi, you extremely should've let us know!" Ryohei said loudly. Leaning out the window, he peered at the large billboard that said "Momokyokai" and added, "It might be hard to take their sign with you though."
"They'll be taking the sign with them when they leave," Hibari said. "We'll be taking the building. It should be fine for you herbivores to crowd in."
"I can't believe you beat up a yakuza group," Tsuna muttered, feeling somewhere between stunned and horrified. "I can't believe you beat up a yakuza group just to take over their home base."
Hibari looked unrepentant, as always. "Just so we're clear," he added, "I don't care about where herbivores like to crowd. This entire town is my territory, not theirs."
The Momokyokai had tried to disagree. It hadn't ended well for them. The entire building was strewn with unconscious, beaten men, including their leader, who lay whimpering at Hibari's feet.
"Hibari, we can't just kick them out," Tsuna tried to reason.
Giving him a deeply unimpressed look, Hibari set out to prove him wrong — by grabbing the yakuza boss by the collar and, with impressive strength for an elementary school kid, hauling him to the window. The second floor window.
So that was why it had been open.
"Hibari!" Tsuna protested as Hibari began to push the yakuza boss out into thin air. "Don't do that!" Tsuna pleaded. "What about… what about the clean up? Who's going to help us fix everything up and move the furniture?"
Pausing in his defenestration, Hibari looked dubiously between Tsuna and the yakuza boss.
"You want him to help?" Hibari repeated.
"Well, how else are we going to do? There's only five of us," Tsuna said, crossing his arms. "I'm sure the Momokyokai will be happy to help us move in."
The yakuza boss, his back bend over the window ledge and only still hanging on thanks to Hibari's strong grip, nodded frantically in agreement.
When Kyoko arrived, Tsuna asked her to help him patch up the worst of the injuries Hibari had inflicted. He felt guilty, honestly, since Hibari had only done this for their sake, in his own weird way.
The yakuza members were surprisingly docile when it came to helping the Peaceful Namimori Committee move in — which mostly just involved cleaning up all the things that had gotten broken in Hibari's initial assault and then carrying in Shoichi's boxes of belongings.
However, that didn't last long.
It was barely two weeks before the Momokyokai reassembled and tried to retake their former home base.
Their attack was repelled with ease. Hibari was far less forgiving this time, and he took entirely too much pleasure in continuing to kick the members even after they were down.
When Tsuna intervened, the yakuza boss all but clung to his legs, whimpering in fear.
"That's enough," Tsuna told Hibari, refusing to back down despite the glare he received. "If you keep beating them up, they won't be able to clean up the mess they made."
And it was, indeed, quite a mess. Hibari glanced back at the numerous holes that had been put in the walls, the broken furniture, the door ripped off its hinges, and shrugged. He wasn't much for any manual labor that wasn't fighting, and he was all too happy to dump it off on someone else.
Tsuna turned to the yakuza leader with a smile. "Come on, let's get you patched up. But you know, I'm not sure he's going to listen to me if you do this again. If the building is so important, I'm sure we can work something out. We don't actually need this much space."
And that was how, thanks to Tsuna's wonderful leader-ly diplomatic skills, the Momokyokai first moved into their group's base, then began to help with their group's activities, and finally became a branch of their group altogether.
Of course, the path to that outcome was filled with difficulties and beatings administered by Hibari and occasionally Ryohei — for example, to make sure the Momokyokai understood that the Peaceful Namimori Committee opposed all peace-disrupting activity and did not appreciate the Momokyokai helping drive other gangs away just to take their business for themselves.
But Tsuna's steady efforts to keep the Momokyokai members alive and his seemingly unerring forgiveness of their trespasses slowly earned him their loyalty and adoration. He wasn't just the good cop, as Shoichi pointed out. When compared with Hibari, he was like a saint.
They never did get around to taking down the sign.
It was just another ordinary day, and Tsuna was once again stuck doing the after school clean up alone. However, this time it wasn't because his partner on the chore schedule had ditched "Dame-Tsuna" to do the work by himself.
"You really don't have to stay," Tsuna told his partner.
Yamamoto Takeshi, rising baseball star, currently on break from all sports due to his broken arm, grinned and shrugged. "I can't help like this," he said, gesturing a little with his cast, "but I can at least keep you company."
Shrugging, Tsuna got back to work.
As he was finishing up, Yamamoto broke the silence again. "Hey, Tsuna," he said, casual and friendly as always, "are you in a club or something? You're always going off somewhere after school, and Kyoko too."
"Club? Well, it's kind of like that," Tsuna grumbled. "Why do you ask?"
"Hmm, you look like… you're really having fun," Yamamoto commented, sounding almost wistful. "Like you're enjoying yourself a lot."
Tsuna paused. "…Maybe I am," he admitted quietly.
It was a strange thought but… it was true, wasn't it? He enjoyed himself, being with Kyoko and Onii-san and Shoichi and even Hibari.
"Yeah, I guess I am," Tsuna said, smiling. "I'm having fun."
"Do you think I could join too?" Yamamoto wondered. "I mean, even though I'm like this." He gestured again with his cast.
Tsuna had fully intended to say no, but a glance at Yamamoto made him pause. He had never seen his usually cheerful classmate so uncertain or downcast. He supposed that, banned from the baseball he dedicated so much of his time to and more or less abandoned by his teammates, Yamamoto must have felt at loose ends and very lonely.
"…Sure, why not?" Tsuna said, sighing. "But don't blame me if you don't like it. You can leave anytime."
Yamamoto — Takeshi — grinned.
He didn't leave, incidentally, even after his arm healed. Fighting evildoers, according to Takeshi, was the most exciting thing he had ever done. He even decided to ask his father to teach him their sword style, Takeshi excitedly told Tsuna.
Tsuna just sighed again.
By this point he understood — there was no point in fighting it. Some things were just meant to be.
It was in his blood, you could say.