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[BnHA] The Death of Paula Bloom (Non-canon)

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[BnHA] The Death of Paula Bloom (Non-canon)

Post by Phirania on 11/16/2018, 9:18 am

No one expects an angel to set the world on fire.

She was always the reserved type, always trying to draw as little attention to herself as possible. She'd hide behind books and escape into stories and fantasies of people much braver and stronger than she. Getting close to others was a mistake she'd known since birth, lest she hurt them. She always did.

Tirinus was the first casualty. Like everything else, it had been her fault, her responsibility. If she'd only been stronger, braver, faster… Maybe then, Mozi wouldn't have died. And maybe she wouldn't be where she was now, allied with the Sinister Society and dismantling the Hero hierarchy. Tirinus had always been so dauntless -- he was always the first one to jump into combat, and he never backed down from a challenge. Like his flames, he attacked his targets from every possible angle until he finally overwhelmed them. But it was this very brash nature that Paula had exploited, luring him out one-on-one lest he damage his pride. The look on his face when the Society’s Nomu had ambushed him…

Priceless.

~ ~ ~

“Oh my god… MOZI!!!” Reiko was the first to run to the moth-girl's side when she fell. That wasn't to say that she ran there fastest, but merely that she was the closest to Mozi when her heart stopped beating. The villain that they'd been fighting was unreal, and the sneer on his face when Mozi unceremoniously fell backwards into a mound of snow would be etched into Paula's memory forever. Reiko cradled Mozi's head in her lap as she murmured softly. “Please be okay, please be okay…!”

It was already clear that Mozi wouldn't be.

“Dammit! Tirinus, flank this bastard with me!” The jet engines on Daizo's arms glowed warmly as he burst himself towards the villain in a burst of speed. He was trying to keep himself composed under pressure, but his movements were more sloppy than usual. It was clear Daizo was rattled by what had happened -- he was leaving himself exposed more than usual.

“But-!” Tirinus had now joined Reizo in standing over Mozi's prone form. The usual vigor in his eyes had been replaced with an all-too palpable fear that the girl he loved had just died.

“NOW!!!” Daizo backflipped away from the villain, using the propulsion of his jets to try to increase the distance away that he'd land. But the villain was upon him in a blink of an eye, its gargantuan hand gaining a hold on Daizo's leg and slamming him headfirst into an ice-covered building.

“We'll handle this.” Reiko and Tirinus turned as Inori and Paula finally reached the casualty-site. Inori placed two fingers on Mozi's pulse as she spoke. “Reiko, you should go, too. You and Tirinus need to hold out for as long as you can -- I've already called Bakugou-sensei for help.”

“...Dammit…!” Conceding, Tirinus let out a roar of rage as he ran toward the villain in an explosion of flame and fury. A flame-engulfed fist struck the villain's side before Tirinus executed a swift series of flame bursts at the enemy. With a display of grandiose strength, Reiko piledrove the villain into the building, collapsing the walls around the hole that was made. As the structure began to crumble into pieces, Daizo staggered to his feet to rejoin the fight.

“Paula, I'll need you to alter the output of your electric shocks to resuscitate Mozi's heart.” Inori had removed her hand from Mozi’s pulse and had now placed an ear to the moth-girl's chest to listen for a heartbeat. “Not much time before the situation becomes unsalvageable.”

“B-but I can't… I never…” Paula began to trip over her words.

“You can, and you will!” Inori shot back, fixing her intense gaze on the other girl. Paula gulped as she gingerly knelt in the snow, placed her hands together. She rubbed them together for a moment before pressing them onto Mozi's chest, sending a shock through the fallen girl's body.

No response.

“Again.” Inori's singular word cut through the sudden sense of dread that Paula felt as she sent a second shock into Mozi. And a third. And a fourth. She was barely aware of the sounds of explosions nearby as Katsuki Bakugou arrived on the scene to aid them -- Her focus was on resuscitation. She tried again. And again.

But it wouldn't change anything.


~ ~ ~

Reiko and Daizo had followed not long after Tirinus. Theirs had been a romance to envy, with months of indecision finally broken at the U.A. Cultural Festival where their relationship was made official. They'd always looked so happy together… Which made it all the more crushing when Paula… no, when Medusa had had to take them out.

Kindness was a weakness she could no longer afford to abide by. The emotion in itself wasn't a weakness, but Medusa was one who always stood by herself. She couldn't afford to rely on others over relying on her own strength -- that would only get them hurt. She needed to be alone. It was better for everyone else when she was.

Nobody could help her, anyway. And there was nothing left for her to aspire towards.

Was there regret? Only that she'd gotten close to these people, tried to be friends. She’d always known how it would end, as all things had. By letting them down when they needed her most, and proving she was just a liability to the group. Their blood was on her hands, both when she was a peer in their class and now as she stood over their still-bleeding corpses. And although she was on the brink of death, Medusa could see Reiko's slowly fading eyes pleading with her to stop going down the path she’d chosen.

And Medusa felt nothing as she returned her gaze.

~ ~ ~

Paula's dorm room was pitch-black from the lack of lighting, and she herself was curled on her bed in a cocoon of blankets. Mozi's funeral had been a week ago, but Paula hadn't attended. The glares that Tirinus had shot at her since they'd gotten back from the mission had said enough -- he blamed her for that death, which she should've been able to prevent. But, as has had happened many times before, Paula had no idea what she had been doing. The only reason they'd been out in the field had been to pursue a lead on Paula's cousin who'd been missing for years. She'd wanted to go alone, but everyone had looked so eager to pitch in and help in the investigation… the fact that Bakugou had discovered that the missing Hero applicants was apparently part of some Villain scheme had made it all the more compelling to go.

But it had all gone wrong. Sure, in Deku’s time, students had been kidnapped and attacked on school grounds, but none of the kids had actually died. But now U.A. High was caught in a publicity nightmare unlike any that they’d seen before, and they were completely unprepared for the aftermath. Several concerned parents had already pulled their kids out of the program, and anti-Hero boycotts had become more common on the streets.

A soft whirring came from her desk, and Paula exhaled softly as she lifted her gaze a bit to look at her computer. The webcam on top of the monitor zoomed in and out briefly before turning to face her. The jellyfish-girl lowered her eyes slightly as a text document opened up on her desktop and a series of letters were typed out in a large font size.

Do you want to talk?

Paula looked away, curling herself up further into her blankets. The webcam whirred for a few more moments before shutting down, and the text document deleted itself. After a moment, she could hear the sounds of footsteps moving away from her dorm room door and walking down the hall. She couldn’t face Inori right now. Nor anyone else.

Not when she’d caused everything to go so wrong.

Again.


~ ~ ~

Inori had been the last to fall. Her Quirk had let her stay aware of Medusa’s location nearly 24/7, but the Sinister Society had eyes in many places. No amount of electronics and surveillance could not keep her safe forever, and each contingency that had been planned for by the Society had unfolded perfectly. Even now, Japan itself was on the brink of economic collapse, threatening to bring down many of its global allies alongside it. It had all happened so fast, and no Hero could have prevented the bloodshed that it had heralded.

Goodness, Medusa was tired. How long had she been crumbling away? It was the very same Cultural Festival that Reiko and Daizo made their relationship official that Paula had been approached by the Sinister Society. A first-year student at the time, she’d been prepared to engage the Villains in combat, but their information was too… personal for Pau- no, Medusa to ignore. Years ago, before she set off for Japan on a boat, her cousin had made his own journey to become a Hero. He would have been the first in the Bloom family to become a Pro Hero… but he’d been kidnapped as a first-year without a word. Medusa’s family had been devastated, and it had been a battle-and-a-half for Medusa herself to travel to Japan. She wanted to become a Hero, both for herself and for her mother, but she also wanted to discover the truth behind her cousin’s disappearance.

By now, that boy was long dead.

But the Society promised the truth of his fate, and the opportunity for Medusa to finally, truly get a better grip on her abilities. She’d longed for so long to touch someone’s face without fear of killing them by accident… but she’d resisted them. Was it wrong that she’d never reported her interaction with the Society? Or was it wrong that she didn’t question their intel to the extent that she should have? And then, a mere month later, Mozi was six feet under, and a Villain with a Quirk they’d never seen before had wiped the floor with the Class 1-A group that’d set out to help Medusa. There was no place for her as a Hero, and she’d known that all along. Medusa was never a hero in the stories of myth, and neither was she.

After all, Paula Bloom -- an American girl wanting to be the #1 Hero globally -- was already dead.

~ ~ ~

“Please, stop blaming yourself.”

Paula barely registered the presence of Reiko as the other girl approached. Normally, Paula was hyper-aware of the presence of others -- certain species of jellyfish had perfect 360° awareness of their surroundings. For Paula, this meant she had a spatial awareness of anything moving within a certain range of her body. Often times useful, but she hardly cared to it any mind right now. Reiko slowly approached the swing set that Paula was sitting on, carefully taking a seat on the second swing. The two sat in silence for a moment, and Paula was sure Reiko was trying to think of something to say -- empathy was typically something Reiko seemed to excel at. But Paula couldn’t help but squeeze her eyes shut as the gnawing pit of guilt in her stomach grew larger and larger with each second that passed.

“We don’t have to speak about what happened… but just know that I’ll be here for you when you do.” Reiko finally said as she placed a hand on Paula’s clenched fist. The jellyfish girl flinched and withdrew her hand from Reiko’s touch. In that moment, Paula wanted more than anything to confess to everything -- the meeting with the Society, her cousin’s fate, everything about the truth behind Mozi’s death. All information came with a cost, and she’d learned that firsthand. There weren’t any other paths for Paula to follow -- she’d already decided to leave U.A. behind for the Society once night came. But no words came out, only salty tears.

And the last comfort she ever felt was of Reiko embracing her in a tight embrace as the sun set over U.A. High.

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Phirania
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