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THE REPORTERS CROWDED AROUND HER. Microphones were shoved into her face, the metal shiny and cold. Cameras flashed like tiny suns and caused spots to appear in her vision. The shouting voices were much too loud for her liking. She tried to shove past them, but someone grabbed her arm.

Tensing, she turned around to look at the woman that had clutched her bicep. "Let go of me," she said, expressionless and bored sounding. The night before had left her tired and frayed, and it took much more effort than usual to not let it show. "I'm going to be late."

"What do you think about All Might teaching you?!" the woman screaming at her, microphone jammed in front of he nose.

"I think ..." She pushed the mic away and let her eyes narrow into a glare. Her glares were rarely ever seen, only used when she was absolutely infuriated. The reporter shuddered, taking a step back at the sight. "... that harassing a minor is generally frowned upon. So please, let go of me."

She rarely ever tried to be intimidating, but when she cared enough to put others in their place, she did the job better than any adult could. And with all of the harsh noise and jostling and the hand that grabbed her no don't touch me let me go please please please, paired with her exhaustion from the previous day's events, the protective casing on her buttons had shattered, leaving her to be a frightening teenager with cold, hard eyes and twitching fingers that itched to slam them all away with a shield.

The woman released her, scrabbling away like a scared mouse. The rest of the reporters cleared a path for her, afraid that she would turn her fury on them. She kept her glare pinned on the doors of U.A., knowing that if she let it drop for one second the nosy adults would be on her like starved dogs.

She hated reporters.


"Smith."

Her uncle's voice pulled her out of her thoughts. While he had been talking, she drifted off into memories of her fitful sleep the night before. Nightmares had plagued her the entire night, visions of broken bottles and her father's yelling as he berated her for losing her battle against Jiro and Kaminari. She woke up gasping, hands flying to the skin just above her temple, her muddled senses shouting that she was bleeding and in pain when in reality, there was nothing there but a scar hidden by tangled blonde hair.

She'd only gotten three hours of true rest, the other six spent fighting off glass shards and staring blankly at the ceiling. Eventually, Taco came to wake her up like he normally did and the day started like any other.

Now she sat in the 1-A classroom, in front of Yaoyorozu, next to Tokoyami, behind Midoriya, blinking confusedly at her teacher.

Aizawa sighed -- he did that quite often -- and repeated his earlier statement. "While you and Yaoyorozu worked well together, you also overestimated your Quirk's strength and landed yourself in the infirmary. Fix that."

"Yes, sir," she murmured, turning her gaze back to the notch in her desk that either resembled a pineapple or something else that she would rather not think about.

The hobo-esque man at the front of the room announced that they were to choose a class president before retreating to his yellow sleeping bag. She was beginning to resent the color yellow, because that stupid thing was everywhere, at school and at home because her uncle apparently couldn't live without it like a teenage American white girl can't live without her phone.

The entire class roared to life as everyone yelled their reasoning as to why they should be the class representative. Even that meek rock boy -- Koji Koda, that was his name -- had his hand in the air, though he didn't actually say anything. She had only ever seen him communicate with sign language, so maybe he was mute. She didn't know, or care.

Such things as class presidents were so meaningless. That title held no worth, it was just something that teachers gave to students to make them feel special. So there was no point in running for the position, and therefore no reason to raise her hand like the others.

However, Iida seemed to have a different approach on the subject. "This is a sacred position! It is an important responsibility, and cannot be decided by mere want!" The blue-haired boy -- who also had his hand up -- stood and declared that Class 1-A's representative should be voted for in an election.

She really didn't care about it at all, but decided to vote for Yaoyorozu. The ponytail girl was very intelligent, both in combat and in normal circumstances, and was one of the few that seemed able to control a large group.

It did bring a twitch of her lips, though, when she received one point more than Bakugo and he threw a little hissy fit about it.

After the votes were counted, it was decided that Midoriya would be their president, and Yaoyorozu the vice president. She had the same number of votes as the pretty girl, but said that she didn't want the position with no hesitation.


"I'm still really sorry about yesterday, Smith," Kaminari groaned, covering his face. "I didn't mean to let it get that out of hand."

She waved him off. "Don't be. Neither of us knew that my shields are weak to electricity." She didn't mention the nightmares, but she wasn't one to share details about her personal life anyway.

Ashido slurped a noodle. "Yeah, but didn't it hurt?"

Nibbling at her apple, she nodded. "Pain is just a part of life. There's no way to get around it. It's always going to be there, so it's best to just deal with it. Easier to just ... go with the flow."

"Still, idiot, you should at least try not to get hurt." Every head at the table turned to look at the blonde who had spoken. Head down, scowl resting on his face, Bakugo flicked his napkin. "One day you might mess up big time."

"I think I know how to handle pain, Cauliflower," she responded, standing up. "It comes with living in this world." She threw away her trash and left to find Aizawa's office, thinking that she would take a nap until it was time for her next class.

And then the alarms went off.


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