Summary: "Don't feel bad for not picking up the phone, Mom. There's- there's been an accident…" Midoriya Inko receives a voicemail. Yagi Toshinori a very disturbing phone call. Midoriya Izuku doesn't know which one was worse but he was glad he could hear at least one comforting voice right then.
"Midoriya residence. We're not home right now. Please leave a message after the tone and we'll get back to you as soon as possible! Thank you!"
"O-Oh… Oh, you're not… home. Hey, mom. Hey, I-. Um, okay, first of all, don't feel bad for not picking up the phone, okay? Don't feel bad. Please. I-I'm sorry, too, anyway. There's- there's been an accident. And I- We- We were on the train. Kacchan's helping the rest of the passengers right now. I swear even he's being serious right now. I want to help, too, Mom, but I-
He lent me his phone. Mine's… broken. Bad place to be during the crash. I should have been-"
There was a sound of a sharp intake, barely audible over the background noise. Yells, screams and whimpers. An alarm going off somewhere in the distance.
If one were to close their eyes, it would be simple to imagine the chaos, yet at the same time, it wouldn't even be close.
"I want to help them, Mom. Aren't I a hero? It shouldn't end-"
Another pained gasp.
A frustrated groan.
"I think the battery's… running out. I have one more- one more call I absolutely need to make. I'm sorry, Mom. I'm so sorry.
Please don't feel bad. Please. Please don't feel bad.
Don't feel bad.
I love you.
I love you, Mom."
Scattered rumble cracked beneath heavy boots once he landed next to his fallen classmate. He took in the pale complexion, trembling fingers clenching his own phone, a wobbly smile a failed (annoying) attempt to be comforting, even though he was not the one who should be comforting other people right now. If he wanted to help, he should have gotten up already and-
"K-Kacchan?" the boy breathed, a scratchy yet wet sound that had no place coming from him. "I-I'm sorry, your phone-"
"Shut up," he growled at him, red eyes narrowed. He struggled to voice his anger (anger?) properly. "Just stick around, nerd. I don't want you ruining my streak by dying on my watch. Go do it somewhere else." Fucker had the audacity to laugh.
Or rather, attempt a short chuckle that rattled his chest enough to make him cough. For his sanity's sake, he would pretend not to notice the red staining the ghostly pale face.
"I-I'll try, Kacchan. Can I make another-?"
"You could get off your arse and do your damn job, but sure. Make another call." The sarcasm dripped heavily from his tone, though the other seemed indifferent- used to it, perhaps.
With that, he turned away, having had enough of that image to be forever imprinted into his memory. Not that it made a difference, but-
But don't let him die on my watch.
Neither Midoriya nor Bakugou were known to be particularly tardy people, but even when most of the class had already gathered with them still missing, it wasn't immediately worrying. They knew the two boys were from the same neighborhood, so for them both to be late, it was safe to assume that perhaps there had been some delay with their transportation. The less likely -though not entirely impossible- scenario was they were decking it out somewhere, the way they had some time ago. Still, after that one fight there was a quiet, unspoken not-quite-understanding between them, or at the very least Bakugou, though still verbally… impolite, refrained from open, physical hostility.
When Aizawa entered the classroom however, to begin their first lesson of the day, their absence was just entering the state of worrying. The hero took one scrutinizing look at the two consecutive, empty seats and sighed, regretting ever letting his students have their two week break to return home in the first place.
"Does anyone know where they are?" Aizawa asked in a tone that sounded as lethargic as his expression betrayed him to be.
Another sigh, long and pained, at the collective shake of heads that answered him.
"When was the last time anyone spoke to either of them?" Three hands were raised hesitantly, one shot straight up. "Kirishima? Iida?"
"I texted Bakugou this morning?" Kirishima asked, scratching his chin as he recalled their conversation. "He was on his way."
"I spoke to Midoriya-kun yesterday. He sounded perfectly fine and ready to return to school this morning."
Another hand was raised at Iida's statement. Aizawa nodded at him to speak.
"I also texted Midoriya this morning," Todoroki frowned. "He was just getting on the train. But I tried again right before you came in and the message was never delivered…"
The statement quickly sobered them all up, as Aizawa narrowed his eyes at the revelation. In a tone much more awake now, he demanded: "Kirishima call Bakugou. Todoroki try calling Midoriya."
A few moments later Kirishima, a soft frown on his features, shook his head. "Bakugou's phone is working but it's busy?"
That calmed them down for a bit. If Bakugou's phone was busy then that meant he was talking to someone, which should mean he wasn't in much trouble, right?
Todoroki didn't share their relief. "It's not working. I don't know if it's off or…" Or something happened to him.
Kaminari waved them off, yet there was still concern written on his face in the crease between his brows, the small trickle of sweat on his forehead. "Maybe he just ran out of battery, guys."
"Yeah," Uraraka chirped. "If they're on the train, they're together. And they're both super strong, they should be fine." Despite her words, the smile she granted them with was shaky at best.
Eventually it was Tsuyu who broke through their pretenses and asked what they were all, without a doubt, wondering. "But where are they?"
It was a quiet day. The kind where you don't expect anything to go wrong. And All Might was glad for that, because ever since his rather ungraceful retirement, his inability to help whoever was in need was an ever present ache in his heart, which turned into a full blown fiery pain when the need was great and the outcome despairing. He would later wish he was more on alert. He would wish he expected something bad to happen, for maybe then, maybe then he could have sent help- no, he could have gone to them so much sooner than he did.
He was in the teachers' lounge, preparing for his next class when the phone rang. He blinked at the unfamiliar number for a second before picking up.
"Hello…?" Toshinori answered the phone with some hesitation.
The voice that called to him from the other side chilled him to the bone. Not because of who it was, but for how he sounded.
Izuku's voice would usually bring him a flutter of joy, as the kid had long ago wormed him way into his heart and settled there, snug and comfortable, with no intention of leaving. There was an underlying pride for the boy, fueling his affection, even when he was crying, sensitive as he was, for this and that, even when he was sad, because his successor always rose up to face the hardships that were thrown his way.
The voice that greeted him on the other end of the line was strained and panting. The loud, excitable boy spoke in small whispers, far too pained for Toshinori to suppress the protective instinct in his gut, or the burning, suffocating concern that had gripped the same heart he had given him and twisted until he was the one who couldn't breathe.
"Mi-Midoriya, my boy… Are you all right? What's the matter?"
A crash was heard somewhere in the background where Midoriya was, throwing the boy off-balance.
"Oh-Oh, that sounded bad. Ka-Kacchan! Is everything okay?"
Although quieter, barely audible over the phone, the reply was unmistakable. "Shut the fuck up, Deku! What are you going to do about it?!"
"S-Sorry… I-I hope everything's all- all right…" he trailed off, sounding almost like a kicked puppy.
Toshinori frowned at the conversation, his heart beating loudly against his chest. "My boy, what's going on?"
Static filled the line for a second, as Midoriya probably shifted and the agonized whimper that followed that motion brought a sting to the hero's eyes.
What was happening, where was his student- just how hurt was he?
"There's… there's been an accident," he rasped, his breaths starting to become longer, yet shallower the more he tried to speak. "O-On the train… Ka-Kacchan's helping the rest of… the passengers- I'm sorry- I want to help but…" Toshinori held his breath. "I-I can't really… move."
And for a moment, neither could Toshinori, for the panic had blown up so badly he couldn't breathe, his worry so overwhelming he was about to throw up. Bright blue eyes, blown wide with fear, looked around frantically, to tell someone, someone to go help those kids. There weren't many things that could keep Midoriya Izuku down. Just how injured could he be, to become unable to get up, when the kid's pain tolerance had always kept him on his feet despite terrible, terrifying wounds?
He rushed out of the room before he even had a destination in mind.
"Where are you? I'm on my way. Tell me where you are."
"Wait, no," Izuku gasped.
All Might didn't stop, already halfway to his car waiting outside. "Young Midoriya, I need to get you some help. Tell me where you are." There was an urge in his voice evident now, his previous attempts to conceal it fading away as his worry spiked.
"P-Pro heroes are on their way- that's… not why I called, I…"
"My boy, please tell me where you are."
He jogged to the door of his car, about to get in, when finally, finally he froze. The despair in his student's pleads shook him to his core, shivers running down his spine. Realization dawned on him at last. Now he understood, the reason Izuku had called him.
"Please, please stay on the line with me."
All Might turned around, leaned against the door of the car and slid down, drawing his knees close to himself. His chest was heavy with dread; he struggled to form the words he needed. "You can tell me anything, once you're safe and sound. Let me come to you, tell-" his breath hitched. "- tell me where you are, I beg you."
"No… I… need to tell you now, I don't think I'll…" He trailed off, his words replaced with attempts at steadying breaths, far too short to be comforting. "I'm… I'm sorry, All Might. I'm so sorry."
Toshinori's voice was barely more than a quiet whisper, just loud enough for his student to hear. He almost didn't recognize himself. He sounded so old, so worn out. "Whatever for, my boy…?"
"I let you down," Izuku choked out a sob, cutting through Toshinori's heart like a knife, twisting and turning, until all emotion poured out of him like warm blood from a wound. Painful and out of his control.
"I was… supposed… to be your successor-"
"You are, you will be-"
"I'm going to w-waste your Q-Quirk… I'm sorry- All Might, I'm sorry…" He was openly sobbing now, even though the sound still echoed far too shallow in Toshinori's ears. "I… I don't know w-what to do! S-Should I just give it to Kacchan? He- I can't let it disappear, All Might!"
The sound of his first name quieted the boy down. He almost opened his mouth to apologize at the whimpers still heard from the other side. Izuku beat him to it.
"I'm sorry, All Might…"
You're going to be all right, he wanted to tell him. You're going to be fine, don't talk like that. But if Izuku, of all people, who would always brush himself off as fine even when he was bleeding out right in front of you, reached the point where he considered handing over his Quirk, then he was scared, he was injured horribly enough to be scared, he was… he might be dying.
"O-Oh… The battery's running out, I-"
"Wait, my boy-"
"'Thank you, All Might. For everything-"
The dial tone was the final cue he needed for the tears to start streaming down his cheeks. The worry in his gut remained, though his chest felt oddly hollow right then.
A/N: Not my best work but I hoped you liked it! Thanks for reading! Don't forget to leave a comment before you go! Also, you can always find me on tumblr under the username saltfics!