It was hard to blame her. Harder still to be mad at her. What she asked was realistic, but still felt so very impossible. They had been just friends before. It shouldn't be so hard to go back.
Maybe it was his fault. He should have asked her to wait for things to get settled. Wait for both of them to be ready, instead of trying to be ready. How different would things have been if they waited a year? Or two? Or three? Would the result still be the same?
He stumbled ever so slightly on the rooftop, giving him a view of the city. The lights looked less vibrant than he remembered. Almost like the whole city was choked in a dull unending grey smog. But pollution on that scale was a thing of the past. The stars were out as well, what few could be seen in the bright city still shined brightly.
Mars stood out to him, that fast-moving light that was darting towards the horizon. It was one of the few that she pointed out to him, ever since then he'd been able to hone in on the planet.
What time was it? Probably closer to when he was supposed to start his patrol than end it. Had he gone twenty-four hours? Again. He looked at his phone, dead battery, was probably for the best. It would stop him from texting her and seeing that same 'seen' message appear.
Right, friends. He couldn't blame her. Only himself, his last few messages had been lengthy essays on his feelings and pleads for nothing in particular. He would have ignored him too. It wasn't how an adult, let alone a hero should act.
"Bah," He groaned, running a hand through his hair; it was slick, greasy, and rough. A reminder that he hadn't showered in... a while. He was on patrol to try and not think about it. Lot of good that was doing him, he was used to thoughts of her bringing a smile to his face, now they robbed him of what little happiness he could scrounge up.
"No! Stop!" A scream tore through the night. "My purse."
Where was it? Close, almost like he was right on top of it. He looked down into the alleyway, it almost felt like something out of a comic book. A woman was being robbed right below him. It was her lucky day, and the thugs unlucky day.
He landed right in front of the man, no, it was more of a boy, dressed in all back clothes clutching onto the bright pink purse like it was his life's savings. It was partially for show, and partially his own weariness, but he let the would-be robber crash into him, sending the thug tumbling to the ground.
"Oh fuck!" The boy looked up at him with a face full of fear, scrambling backward. "I'm sorry Deku, sir- please don't smash my face in I didn't know that-"
"That I was on the rooftop?" It was hard to be filled with righteous justice when it was just some poor kid making a bad choice at night. But they were often the most dangerous criminals out there. Arrogant, full of themselves, and willing to use their quirks. But this boy was just afraid.
Probably because he wasn't smiling.
He should probably fix that. "How old are you kid?"
"Fourteen Deku-sir!" He squeaked, still back peddling, the purse forgotten.
"There's already enough criminals in the world, don't you think?" He scooped up the purse, mustering up the best smile he could. It felt awkward and foreign, had he forgotten how to smile properly? "If I let you go with a warning are you going to try and rob someone again?"
The boy stuttered, stammered, and nodded his head. "No sir! I won't!"
"Alright, then, head home, study for school." He helped the kid up with ease.
The moment his feet hit the ground the boy was off running. Hopefully, that was the last he saw of him.
"Deku!" The woman, ran up to him smiling, her skin - or rather her fish scales - shined in the city lights. She smiled at him, straightening out her work outfit and tucking a bit of her salmon hair behind her ear. "Oh wow, I guess even top heroes like you stop small crime huh?"
"It's actually most of what we do," although, a purse theft like this was mostly pure luck and was better left to the police. He just happened to be in the area. And desperate for a distraction, it wasn't that he wanted a crime to happen, the best nights were the ones where the uneventful ones. "Here's your purse back ma'am."
"It's a shame you're taken." Salt in the wound. The woman sighed, placed a hand against her cheek, shaking her hips. "Otherwise I'd love to take you out to drinks, oh well, say hello to Uravity for me!"
He nodded, trying to keep the smile up. A task that was growing increasingly difficult. "I will, take care, ma'am. And have a great evening."
He was on the roof before she could say anything. A humming ventilation system served as his only support, the metal cool against his forehead.
They never went public with their relationship. Even when they were still in U.A. But, they weren't secretive of it either, and the public eventually began to notice, especially as his own fame began to grow. Soon there were tabloids about them as a power couple. It made more than a few interviews awkward. The public hadn't quite become aware that they were no longer a couple.
It was easier to ignore it. At least in theory. Or maybe he was just keeping his mouth shut in hopes that they wouldn't need to be told.
Besides, she could tell them, no doubt she was going to have dozens of interviews in the upcoming months. And they were bound to ask questions about their relationship, they always did. It was why he hadn't done any interviews recently.
It would be smart to go home and rest, he'd already done enough today. But he'd have nothing to do at home. He'd lay in his bed, staring at the ceiling thinking about her. Maybe he should install a dating app on his phone or something. Or just degrade himself to what Mineta tried to do and shamelessly flirt with any single stressed out office worker he saved.
Wait, that was a terrible idea, he had morals and sucked at flirting. All Might was single all his life, so there was no reason why he couldn't. Aside from a pain in his heart that reminded him that he was alone.
"One more crime," he pushed off the ventilation system, stretching and taking in a lung full of the crisp night air. "Or sunrise." whichever happened first. Or he could pass out.
With a running start, he was able to achieve a pseudo form of flight, in a straight line. A few of his old costume variations even had gear that allowed him to maneuver, but it was to easy to damage, to difficult to use, and just didn't do enough. Mei had said he'd be better off just jumping or running everywhere, it'd be quicker than gliding.
And really the only time that maneuvering in the air would be a good thing was in pursuit of a flying villain that he could blast out of the air, or in case there was another airborne entity in his path.
Such as right now.
"Watch out!" He saw them almost too late, someone using their quirk to flat through the air. He braced for impact. Wait, that was bad, if he crashed into them, they'd fall and it might be more fatal for them.
"Woah!" It was a woman.
Gold like the glitter of distant stars surrounded him, covering his field of vision, and engulfing him in a soft bubbly force that left him feeling like he was floating. He knew this quirk, and he knew the person that had this quirk, but he couldn't remember who it was.
"Whew, that was a close one!" She said once again.
When he opened his eyes he saw a spiraling golden tail emerging from his legs, the force of which was all that kept him from free falling. He followed the trail to its origin. Long hair that was the color of a cloudless sky, sparkling blue eyes, and a smile that was filled to the brim with eternal optimism. A well-proportioned beauty in a skin-tight suit
"Nejire?" He hadn't seen her in what felt like years, at least not in person. She was away during the last official hero ranking, but she was planted as the number seven pro-hero. Somehow, she still looked exactly like she had in U.A.
Somehow her smile grew even more. "Oh! Izuku!" she buzzed around him like a hummingbird inspected a feeder. "Long time no see, how are you doing? Fight any crime lately? What are you doing up here? How long have you been able to fly, wait that's a stupid question, you probably jumped didn't you. Oh, wait, Hi!"
She was still the same as always. Infinitely curious, and full of questions.
"I'm doing well, but uhh, do you think we can talk on the ground? I don't want to wear you out." He gestured downward, it wasn't that he didn't trust her ability to keep him afloat, more that he didn't trust his ability to stay awake if he wasn't moving.
"Oh, don't worry about me! I still got plenty of stamina left after all. I bet I could even go a few more hours if I wanted. But what about you, do you normally patrol this late? Do you live nearby?" She began to float towards the ground like she was adrift on a meandering river and he was her passenger. When both of their feet were firmly planted on the ground she looked up at him, her blue eyes reflecting the night sky of the city around them. "Woah, you got tall. I remember when you were barely taller than me! How tall are you now?"
"You haven't changed at all Nejire," He laughed, a hand resting on his stomach. He began to walk, and she followed after him with a bounce in her step, hands behind her back. "To answer your questions, I'm six foot and some change, I have an apartment nearby, and I sometimes patrol this late. What about you?"
"Oh!" It was cute how her head bobbed when she did that, her blue eyes were forward and she kept smiling straight ahead. "Well let's see, I haven't grown any taller since U.A. I actually just moved to this area too, and I'm actually just about to call it for tonight until you crashed into me that is."
She stuck her tongue out, swaying from side to side like she was bursting with energy. "But if you're still on duty I'll join you!"
"I was about to turn it in soon, just a few more blocks and then I was going to head home." Technically a lie, but it was actually what he should be doing. And now he was actually starting the feel his fatigue setting in. Or maybe it was just Nejire's energy making him aware of his lack of energy. "But what brings you out to this area?"
"There was a super pretty apartment for rent here!" She twirled on her feet as they rounded a corner. "And because there were so many other heroes in my city, I decided to change location! That and change is good every so often and moving is kind of fun."
"And a bit exhausting."
"Gah, that reminds me I still have stuff I need to unpack." She whined, somehow even her pout looked happy. "So, do you always run solo?"
"Most of the time yea," it wasn't from lack of applications to his office, but it was more his general lack of an office. "I used to be part of an office, and I still join them sometimes. I'm trying to get my own office up and running."
"Oh! That's something I've been thinking about doing too." She laughed a sweet sound that was as bubbly as she was. "Kind of sad that two of the top ten heroes don't have an office huh?"
"Yea, but it's a lot of work,"
"And that you feel you can do more work without an office?" She chimed in elbowing him in the side ever so slightly like she was unearthing some dark secret of his.
All Might didn't really have an office if anything he worked out of Sir Nighteye's office once the later graduated. But he wasn't really trying to be like All Might, it just kind of worked out that way. "You're not wrong, that and I can't really imagine myself having a sidekick."
"Oh! Idea!" Nejire twirled around in front of him, her smile bursting like a supernova of positivity. Her blue eyes were sucking him into her excitement. "Since we live in the same area, we should go on patrols together! We can even be partners! That and our styles match up well, you're a short to mid-range and I'm a mid to long range so we'd sync up pretty well."
She pulled at the green part of her costume. "Plus our colors already kind of match, I'm sure it'd be a lot better than going solo. What do you say? Wanna be my partner? Pretty please!"
It felt like it was impossible to say no to her. He had no reason to refuse her, it had been standard for Top heroes to team up for years now, and the public certainly enjoyed whenever a new partnership was announced. "Sure, it sounds like it could be great."
"You bet it'll be great!" She cheered, floating up in the air with her quirk. She pulled a phone out of somewhere, tapping away at it. "Let me give you my number! We can text! And fair warning I use a lot of emojis."
"Oh, my phone's dead, how about I give you my number instead?"
"Oh! That works!" She twisted in the air so that she was upside down, her long hair nearly touching the ground.
Once his number was in her phone she shot up into the air twirling like a circus performer before diving down in front of him once more. "Awesome! We're now unofficially official pro-hero partners! That means you can't block me no matter how many random things I spam at you, just in case there's something super serious."
"Don't worry, I'll be sure to keep you unblocked, I'll even favorite you with a bunch of random Emoji as your name once I charge my phone." He stretched popping his neck and letting out a mighty yawn. His lack of sleep was finally catching up to him. "But that'll have to wait until tomorrow."
"Oh, right, right, good plan! I'll message you tomorrow, well technically today, and I already messaged you. But anyways, I'll see you tomorrow Izuku!" She began to float away, she flopped onto her back looking at him with one leg over the other, her long hair chasing after her like a comet's tail. "Wait, do you want a lift home?"
"Nah, I'll be fine," he waved her off. "I'll see you tomorrow."
"Okay! Ahh, I'm so excited about this that I might not be able to sleep," She gasped in mock horror, her speed increasing as she righted herself. "Alright! Later!"
It was only when he lost sight of her did he realize he was smiling.
AN: Welcome to my Izuku x Nejire fic! I had this idea and it just needed to come out! And I love it! Love love love! And I hope you all do as well! For the record Izuku is 20 in this fic.