When the time came for Izuku to come back to work, he felt ready - he'd spent enough time laid up in bed doing nothing but paperwork. It was time for action.
His excitement for work was significantly dampened by the fact that Eri and his mom wouldn't let him wheel himself to work - they were afraid he might strain himself or reopen his wound if left to his own devices.
"But I'm fine," he had insisted when they started pushing him out the door. "The doctor said that I should start trying to push myself more so I can build my strength back up."
"I don't think this is what he meant," Eri said, crossing her arms.
"We need to know you make it safely," Inko added. "Just let us do this to help you."
So he had let them push him the entire way to the police station. If you had asked Izuku, he would have said that he would have much preferred pushing himself, and he definitely would not have admitted that he was actually grateful that his arms weren't tired to start his work day, and there was no way he would admit to anyone that each and every bump they hit on the way there made his wound throb.
No, instead Izuku pretended everything was fine and thought about nothing but all the good he could do now that he was back at work.
The entirety of the police department was waiting for Izuku when they arrived. Izuku felt tears sting his eyes at the sight of coworkers - no, his family - waiting for his arrival. It was embarrassing, but at the same time it warmed his heart to see. If they hadn't been fighting to see him in the hospital it would have been overwhelming to have so many people vying for his attention.
They truly gave him the hero's welcome. Inside there were balloons, streamers, and confetti that led to his office. It was almost definitely a fire hazard, and it appeared that there had been a sale on bachelorette party decorations given the… suggestive shapes on the decor. It was completely Saito's doing, based on the way she cackled when she spotted his furious blush. To make things even worse, Watanabe was attempting to finish the paperwork to process a recent arrest, but he was too flustered because of the the inappropriate comments the handcuffed man was making.
"Clean this up, it's completely unprofessional," Naomasa said disapprovingly. "Midoriya, to your office and we'll discuss your current workload."
Izuku halted, tasteless decorations forgotten. "My current workload? I'm coming back to duty, what do you mean my current workload?"
Many of the officers traded looks before Sasaki hesitantly said, "Little Midoriya, you're still a long ways from being completely recovered. You can't return to your full duties."
"What are you talking about, of course I'm fine. I was cleared to work."
"You were cleared for desk work," Naomasa said sternly. "We have some cases that we would like a consult on, as well as a number of requests for quirk analysis from police stations across the country. We refuse to put your physical wellbeing at risk because you are impatient. That's an order, Detective."
Biting back his frustration, Izuku nodded sharply. "It sounds like I have plenty to do."
Apparently the look on his face was enough to dissuade his colleagues from attempting to push the wheelchair for him because they just watched while he rolled on into his office. Someone had had the foresight to take away his desk chair and move his desk to allow easy access, but he was distracted by the mounds of paperwork on his desk - it was truly a formidable amount. They clearly wanted him stuck in his office, even though he felt perfectly capable of his normal amount of police work.
He made it through about half of the paperwork when he heard something of interest out in the main area. A couple of the officers were speaking in hushed tones, almost definitely in an effort to keep him from hearing, but he'd spent enough time undercover that "overhearing" things like that was practically second nature. Someone said something along the lines of, "But how are we going to get the children out?"
That caught Izuku's attention. As quietly as he could, he wheeled his chair forward to hear even better. They were so intent in the conversation that they didn't notice him slowly wheel into the room. He had just joined the cluster of officers as Mori said, "Well if we can't bargain with them and storming the place is out of the question, what other options do we have?"
"You could send someone in undercover," Izuku said in a whisper.
"That wouldn't work, no one here has the skills to pull it off."
"Yeah, especially since Deku is out of commission."
"We can request aid from one of the other police stations around," Nakamura offered.
"Just make sure station seven doesn't find out," Saito spat. "That Officer Furutani will just say that our station relies on Midoriya too much."
"That's because we do," Tamakawa pointed out.
"No you don't," Izuku scoffed.
"Yeah," Saito said, "listen to Little Midoriya."
It took everyone a few seconds to process the conversation before the whole host of officers rounded on him, all with various levels of disapproval on their faces. It was only a matter of seconds before he had a police escort to his office. He thought that that would be the end of it, but before he knew it, he was sitting at his desk with a boot on his wheelchair - the kind of boots they used on people who had severe parking violations. Where did they even get a boot for a wheelchair? It also apparently anchored him to the floor so he couldn't budge his wheelchair however he exerted what strength and body weight he possessed - not that he tried to do anything like that, of course.
The more he looked around, the more the amount of precautions the police station were taking to keep him "safe" irked him. The wheelchair boot was not only unexpected, but it was offensive, and it reeked of U.A.'s engineering department - of course Naomasa would call in a favor with Nezu for something like this. (Little did Izuku know that there was a new committee at U.A. devoted to finding ways to keep him from an untimely demise.)
However, the most insulting thing of all stared him in the face the longer he was in his office: someone had put a pool noodle over Stain's sword where it was mounted on the wall. It was mounted over the doorway where it would draw minimal attention in an effort to keep "Deku" under wraps, but have the sword available should it be necessary. That said, he couldn't even get the sword off of the wall without standing up, which was absolutely forbidden outside of physical therapy. At that point, it was babyproofing, plain and simple.
Izuku knew how everyone in the station felt about him being back at work - it was too early, he shouldn't be back yet, etc. They were excited to see him back, definitely, but they acted as glorified babysitters, not colleagues.
Normally Izuku would have shrugged it off and taken care of the work he had in front of him. The paperwork and quirk evaluations were tedious, yes, but at least he wasn't cooped up in his house, or even worse, the hospital. But even though he tried to rationalize, he couldn't deny he was angry. Even more than that, though, Izuku felt petty, so he abused his knowledge of quirks and colleagues.
Besides, there were certain things that he had always wanted to test, but he hadn't been willing to cause discomfort to his fellow officers. Now was his time.
To begin, Izuku wanted to figure out Saito's full capabilities - at least just how much she could hear. Obviously with her enhanced senses there were a number of tests that he would love to conduct, but for now he would have to content himself with testing her hearing. Izuku was specifically interested in her range of hearing for frequencies that were above the normal range of human hearing. Obviously she could hear things from a greater distance than others could, but this was previously unexplored territory, at least for Izuku.
He couldn't just play high frequencies from his office, or it would be clear that he was the source of the sound. However, with a little bit of effort, his computer was connected to the intercom system that they had but rarely used in the station - it was mostly for Watanabe to announce emergency calls to everyone.
Izuku started the frequencies at levels high enough that there was almost no chance of Saito hearing them - it was better to start too high and work his way down. He started at roughly 300 kHz, the level that the greater wax moth could hear. From there Izuku worked his way down until he noticed Saito grimace a bit. Perfect.
He played the frequency until Saito turned sharply to Sasaki and asked, "What's that noise?"
"Is Mori breathing too heavily again?" Sasaki asked without looking up from her paperwork.
"No, that high pitched - and now it's gone," Saito said, throwing her hands in the air.
But that was only the beginning. Izuku had had years to come up with plans of this nature, and he was going to take advantage of it.
Naomasa surveyed the wreckage of what had once been a functioning station. He knew that Midoriya wouldn't like the limited duty, but he hadn't thought that it would be this bad.
The wretched bachelorette party decorations were only half take down, as Saito stopped what she was doing every few minutes to yell about some high pitched noise that no one else could hear. Occasionally said outbursts from Saito startled Sasaki enough that she flapped her wings hard enough to disrupt the papers on Mori's desk, which brought about yet another argument between the officers like they'd been having since Izuku had been sent back to his desk. And that was just what Naomasa could see from where he was sitting at his desk. There was a series of crashes and shouting that he didn't want to know the source of.
With a bone-weary sigh, Naomasa picked up his phone, dialing the number he hadn't thought he'd need so soon.
"U.A. High school, Principal Nezu speaking."
"Ah, Detective, I was wondering when I would be hearing from you."
"It appears that I have underestimated the ability of an entire police station to keep a single wounded teenager under control," Naomasa said.
"To be fair, we have known from the beginning that Midoriya is an exception to most things. What can our school do to help you in your efforts to save the young detective from himself?"
"At this point all we can do is to find something to keep him busy and make him feel productive. I'm at a loss here, but if you have any ideas, it will be greatly appreciated."
"I have just the thing in mind, Detective," Nezu said, and the smile in his voice was a little terrifying. However, it was sure to keep Midoriya occupied and alive.
Meanwhile, the entire station breathed a sigh of relief when it was finally time for Midoriya to go home. Inko and Eri came to bring him back, and a few of the officers were near tears at the thought of respite. His departure from the station was largely uneventful until Eri pulled a sash he hadn't noticed off of the wheelchair. "What's this? Can I have it?"
It was definitely the work of Saito - the sash was a pink satin with glittery letters that proclaimed a less than appropriate saying.
"No Eri, no you can't have it," Izuku said quickly.
Izuku looked to his mother, but she simply shook her head, clearly showing that this was his problem, and his alone.
"Because… it's mine."
A/N: So I'm not dead, but it turns out that grad school is hard. The semester has been out for a while, but there was a recent death in my family and everything just made me less and less inspired to write. Kit says hi, and everyone give her a congratulations - she graduated college and got herself a real big kid job! The next update will be significantly faster than this one was, and I'm really excited about what's coming, so it should be good! Thank you all for your continued support and kindness - your comments are really what made me keep writing instead of abandoning this story altogether.