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When Izuku was five, he met Riley... nothing has been the same since.

Coyote is a My Hero Academia For Want of a Nail fanfic written by Ralph Hayes, Jr. that shows Izuku's life if he had a friend in childhood rather than having his canon Friendless Background.

Coyote provides examples of:

  • Accusation Fic: Midoriya goes through Aizawa's Quirk Assessment Test as he does in canon. As per canon, Aizawa threatens to expel the student who gets last in the test. Once the test is done, he reveals it was a trick to bring out their best potential since they did not want to be expelled. However (unlike in canon), all the students decide to drop out because they do not trust Aizawa with their futures. The Original Character also knees Aizawa in the crotch and faces no repercussions for assaulting his teacher. All of the UA teachers then call out Aizawa and list why his methods are immoral, wrong, and do more damage than good and Aizawa is suspended from teaching until further notice.
  • Adaptational Badass: Thanks to Riley's prompting, Izuku is more combat ready and has actual martial training before he obtains a Quirk. It's mentioned that he's actually fought off bullies more than once.
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    • Toshinori mentions briefly that by the time of the Quirk Assessment Test, Izuku can actually use 5% of One For All, which he couldn't do in canon. The only reason he kept breaking his arms in Aizawa's test and the Entrance Exam were because he was backed into a corner.
    • Thanks to his class' input, Mineta figures out how to launch his sticky balls at high enough velocity to make the ceiling shake.
  • Adaptational Personality Change: Izuku is more cheerful and outgoing than canon thanks to Riley's influence, even having a sense of humor that leads him to go along with the latter's jokes. He still maintains his other personality traits though.
  • Adaptational Intelligence: While Izuku's Quirk analysis is a well known trait, here the second he sees new Quirks he will instantly start going over every trait and use it could possibly have. And we do mean every.
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  • All Men Are Perverts: Riley certainly does enjoy the view that more fanservice-inclined costumes offer.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: Izuku still has to cope with this from his classmates due to being Quirkless. Even his friendship with Riley doesn't offer much of a reprieve as the rest of the class consider him a burden on the latter.
  • Awesome by Analysis: The reason Riley has the versatility he does with his Quirk is Izuku's analyzing skills being used to discover every possible aspect of the Quirk.
    • Chapter 4 is all of Class 1-A and 1-B applying this to each other.
  • Berserk Button: Riley's is Izuku being insulted, threatened, or hurt. That happens and you find yourself eye to eye with someone who can use Toon Physics in real life.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Riley's powers, appearance, and personality are from something out of Warner Brothers, but he's smart, creative, and very capable of screwing over those who would hurt his friends.
    • During the Entrance Exam, Izuku passed the same way as in canon. Riley decided to hijack the Zero pointer and ride it around while singing the Super Mario Brothers-theme over the loudspeakers.
    • Izuku and Riley together decided to make dossiers on their teachers to prevent both of them from getting screwed over by the many, many bad ones they've had, which proves to ultimately be Aizawa's downfall.
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  • Big Brother Instinct: They're the same age but Riley otherwise plays this straight. Riley is very protective of Izuku and, as the more extroverted of the duo, he's a lot more outspoken about it. It helps the two see themselves as brothers.
  • Blood Brothers: Riley does a ceremony for this on Izuku's birthday as a reassurance that nothing is going to sever their friendship.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: After the Sludge Villain is defeated (the second time), the various pro-heroes try chewing out Izuku and Riley for jumping into danger. Instead of sitting there and taking it, Riley chews them out right back that two untrained kids were able to make a difference while the trained professionals just sat there, twiddling their thumbs and waiting for somebody else to take care of the problem. When they try making excuses for how their quirks were unsuited for the task, Riley easily comes up with things they could have done that were obvious to him. Even better, the fact that Izuku was quirkless just makes his answer all the more ignorant.
    Kamui Woods: We're Pro Heroes, young man. We know better about what we do than you. We knew that we didn't have a Quirk suitable for dealing with that villain...
    Riley Coyote: A SUITABLE QUIRK? My bloodbrother had NO Quirk, and he STILL dropped Sludgeball on his butt! So I repeat for the peanut gallery, what was your excuse?
    Kamui Woods: Wood burns, kid.
    Riley Coyote: Wet wood doesn't. You have Backdraft right here. If you'd just had Backdraft take a second to douse you first, you could have reached in and grabbed the hostage before the Villain could stop you. Then the rest you could have taken the villain down easily. Or Backdraft could have just diluted him with a blast of water to the face. Which would have kept Kacchan from firing off any more explosions as well. Or Mount Lady coulda grabbed road salt from one of the stores and dumped it on him. Or— hell, half a dozen other ideas! Instead you were all— "Oh noes, my power isn't exactly perfect for slime monsters! What ever shall I doooo?"
  • Cloudcuckoolander: When Izuku first meets Riley the latter shows off a fire extinguisher that he has on hand because he's worried over the city buildings being made of paper and a volcano igniting them. He loses this as he grows.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Riley manages to beat Bakugou and his gang in a fight the first time they meet because he brought along a fire extinguisher.
  • Fantastic Racism: Izuku and Riley have to deal with this from their peers and teachers at school, the former due to being Quirkless and the latter for being a foreigner.
  • Imagination-Based Superpower: Riley's Quirk let's him create amorphic matter that he can shape however he wants, which he calls "oobleck". He can control it's physical state (make it solid, liquid, gas, or intangible), adjust it's temperature (though it only goes so far), and even imitate physical properties of what it turns into (harness, conductivity, etc.). He can even animate his constructs, creating moving structures. However, Oobleck cannot copy chemical properties (wood won't burn, acid can't corrode, food has no flavor, etc.)
  • Mama Bear:
    • Riley's mom isn't happy that he seems to be in trouble over the fight Bakugo tried to start to say the least.
    • Bakugo's mother gets this for Izuku rather than her son. She knows how much of terror he can be and gives an implicit warning to the school that they better stop turning a blind eye to how Bakugo is tormenting Izuku.
  • The Nicknamer: Riley likes giving Embarrassing Nicknames to people he deems deserving of it, most often bullies. The one that has endured the longest would be Bakugo's nickname "Splodey Dope."
  • Petting Zoo People: In addition to the other examples from canon, Riley is a coyote person.
  • Properly Paranoid: Izuku and Riley have been putting up with unhelpful, obstructive, and outright sabotaging teachers for years so they've gotten into the habit of making it so said teachers can't screw them over by taking precautions ahead of time. They even apply this to Aizawa on the off chance he isn't any better than their last ones.
  • Punny Name: Riley's full name is "Riley Coyote." His father named him after it, so it was definitely deliberate.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Izuku points out how impractical Midnight's outfit is, noting how high heels and tearaway cloth make for a horrible hero costume. He also notes that using air pumped nozzles would not address the stated reason for why her costume is designed the way it is but would also improve her Quirk's efficiency.
      • Riley also chimes that continuing to use her current costume won't help her maintain her looks, which are a big part of her hero image.
    • Aizawa's handling of the Quirk assessment test runs into several realistic outcomes that he didn't encounter in canon:
      • Aizawa's threat to expel the worst performing student ultimately leads to the entire class dropping out because none of them want to risk their futures on the whims of a petty Jerkass who kicked out an entire class for not meeting his standards, which they had been warned of ahead of time. They may be striving to be heroes but you are not going to entrust achieving your goal to someone who acts like that, especially after they prove a warning you received about them right.
      • Aizawa revealing that Izuku actually passed the test and claiming the expulsion threat was a ruse isn't seen as a sign of triumph like in canon. Riley is infuriated that Izuku was basically lead into maiming himself for no reason by a teacher. The claim about the ruse also helps the class decide to leave because it served as validation for an earlier warning.
      • Aizawa's expelling an entire class from a few years ago and his threat that he can do so with the current one isn't seen as The Spartan Way like in canon. The rest of the faculty are incensed, noting that parents, alumni, sponsors, and even the Ministry of Education are going to tear strips out of the school for an entire class being expelled on the first day.
      • When Aizawa tries justifying his harshness towards Izuku by pointing out the boy's lack of control over his Quirk, All Might angrily fires back that Aizawa knew that Izuku lacked that kind of control and it's Aizawa's job to teach him how to gain it, not punish him for what he hasn't learned yet.
      • Nedzu notes that entire class dropping out wasn't out of solidarity but because all of them were warned ahead of time how strict Aizawa could be and how likely he was to expel them if they didn't meet his criteria. There aren't going to be close bonds between a bunch of people who had only just met in the morning for the first time.
      • Izuku and Riley are incredibly cynical and mistrusting towards teachers because of how many have actively worked against them in reaching their goals, to the point they had to become Properly Paranoid in order to even make it to U.A. They're naturally suspicious and wary once they actually make it into the school and look into who their prospective teachers will be, discovering Aizawa may prove to be a problem. They were willing to give him the benefit of the doubt right up to the point where he legitimized their worries.
      • The results of Aizawa expelling an entire class are shown. Half of them went to seek schooling at other hero schools, while badmouthing the school to the press over it. The other half either wound up not finishing their education and scraping by on minimum wage, dropping out completely and becoming villains, or committing suicide. Getting expelled from such a prestigious school is not just a matter of "you aren't cutting it here"; either other rival schools will seek to get their hands on such talent or no other school will touch them because of who did the booting out.
      • It gets pointed out that Aizawa's teaching methods are very much Awesome, but Impractical, showing that while the students that do pass go on to become incredible heroes it's often at the cost of nearly twice as many being kicked out because they don't meet Aizawa's standards. Nedzu also raises the issue that part of why Aizawa is so lauded as a teacher is that he tends to get students that qualify as prodigies who he doesn't have to invest much effort in actually teaching while dismissing anyone of lesser talent.
      • It's pointed out that in addition to all the other flaws he has, he constantly sleeps in class and looks slovenly in the extreme.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Aizawa gets one from Nedzu regarding his teaching methods.
    Aizawa: I did them a favor. If they couldn’t handle a little difficulty—
    Nedzu: Oh really? Let’s review what happened to the last group on whom you showered this particular benevolence.” He put a folder up on the table and opened it. Let’s start with the 20 students you expelled a couple of years back… Six of them applied for transfers to our competitors, graduated and went on to become Pro Heroes. Four of them overseas. They are all on record as disparaging U.A. to the press as having an undeserved reputation, by the way… Six of them were unable to complete their education and are now struggling as minimum wage workers. four more of them dropped out completely and now have criminal records as Villains. And five of them committed suicide.
    Aizawa: I judged them as not having enough potential to be proper Heroes, and I stand by that decision--
    Nedzu: That was not your decision to make! They proved their potential when they passed the gauntlet of the admissions exam. Your job was to bring that potential out, to nurture it, to teach them how to use their Quirks become Pro Heroes. Instead you decided to become an obstacle, a hindrance, a threat that the students had to somehow overcome just to secure their futures. On paper, you’re an excellent teacher. On paper, the students who graduate from your class are of the highest quality and go on to be great heroes. The reality, however, is anything but. You maintain your high evaluations by expelling countless promising young students, and keeping the remaining handful of gifted prodigies whom you barely have to exert yourself training, artificially puffing up your own accomplishments as a teacher. You’re constantly pulling your little ‘logical ruses’ on them, turning them untrusting and paranoid toward you and by extension toward the rest of staff. Your personal appearance is slovenly, your attitude is deplorable and you’re constantly sleeping in your own class! Your ‘eccentricities’ have been tolerated for far too long, and it has now been conclusively demonstrated that they harm this institution more than they help. You may be a fairly excellent Pro Hero, but you are a ruinously substandard teacher, and it has once again fallen to someone else to clean up the damage you have done. You may consider yourself on unpaid suspension until further notice.
  • Shout-Out: Riley Coyote's name and Toon Physics quirk are an obvious reference to Wile E. Coyote. He might also be a reference to Coyote, a Trickster Archetype from Native American Mythology, especially since he is mentioned being a Native American ethnically.
  • Skewed Priorities: Riley is initially very sad when he gets his Quirk, because despite "Ability to summon things from imagination," being amazing, he's upset that he doesn't have the power of "Summon infinite pie forever."
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • When All Might comes in and save Izuku and Riley from the Sludge Villain with a Texas Smash, all Riley can do is point out how extraordinarily reckless it was, knowing the physics behind it and comparing it to firing an air-cannon right at them. All Might insists that he has more control over his strength than that and Izuku is too starstruck to care.
    • Chapter three is basically a big one to Aizawa over... well, everything about his teaching style.


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