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Fanfic / Maelstrom (GuardianOfTheLoaf)

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His quirk was an enigma from the moment he was born during a raging storm. Not like his father's, nor like his mother's. A true mutation. After learning about a nascent aspect of his quirk, Izuku realizes that he could be a hero, after a little bit of vigilantism, of course.

Maelstrom is a My Hero Academia fanfic written by GuardianOfTheLoaf with assistance from PatchesYouUp. It updates every Friday and can be read on Archive of Our Own here.


This fic contains examples of the following:

  • Accidental Hero: Izuku's first act of heroism was him knocking a would-be mugger unconscious with a jet of water.
  • Adaptational Angst Upgrade: Bakugou was left traumatized after nearly being killed by the Sludge Villain, panicking easily when immersed in liquid.
  • Adaptational Superpower Change: Unlike in canon where Izuku is initially Quirkless, here he is born with a Quirk named "Reptile", which gave him reptilian features and power over water.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance:
    • Izuku first meets Eraserhead at 13 years old, three years before his canonical introduction as the teacher of Class 1-A.
    • Tensei (referred to as Ingenium) first turns up when Izuku takes his Hero license exam, where in canon he was first introduced in the Hero Killer Arc.
  • Adaptational Late Appearance: Bakugou is first introduced at the end of Chapter 2, as Izuku is beginning his first day at UA, instead of being introduced as Izuku's childhood friend turned bully.
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  • Adapted Out: Shinsou replaces Minoru Mineta in Class 1-A, due to Izuku helping him to mind-control the judges into giving him a good enough score to get into UA.
  • Ascended Extra: Consequently, Shinsou becomes the fic's secondary protagonist, rather than a minor character in General Education.
  • Born During a Storm: Izuku was born during a storm which put an unnamed city in a state of emergency.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Each chapter is named after a different song.
  • Lethal Harmless Powers: During the USJ attack, Izuku ends up using his power over water to knock out three villains via slowing bloodflow to their hearts, choke out another by forcing blood to his mouth and nose and blow apart the Noumu's brain, killing it.
  • Little Bit Beastly: Izuku, due to his Quirk, has webbed hands and feet, bright green eyes with vertical slitted pupils, gills (which let him breathe underwater) and sharp teeth.
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  • Logical Weakness: Izuku's significantly ramped-up metabolism means he needs much more food than normal.
  • Making a Splash: In addition to his reptilian features, Izuku's Quirk gives him the ability to control water- something he first discovers after accidentally preventing a mugging.
  • Meaningful Name: How Izuku got the name of Riptide:
    "Eventually the public had recognized his existence and one reporter, doing an article on his quirk, had referred to him as similar to a riptide, sweeping in and taking care of the villains and then rushing away before he could be captured by police or heroes."
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Izuku ends up going into a Heroic BSoD after he blows the Noumu's brain apart during the USJ attack, and thinks of himself as a monster for doing so.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: Achilles presumed himself to have Seen It All due to being forced to see people's worst nightmares when he uses his Quirk; whilst what precisely he saw when he accidentally touched Izuku is left unmentioned, whatever he saw was enough to unnerve him.
  • Orphanage of Love: Whilst not good or bad, Izuku made friends with most of the children at the orphanage his mother left him at. The foster care system, not so much. Ultimately averted when it was revealed that Izuku was never registered with an orphanage.
  • Supernatural Fear Inducer: Achilles' Quirk lets him induce somebody's worst fears by touching them, albeit with the drawback of being forced to see what they see. He ends up accidentally using it on Izuku during a raid on an arms deal.
  • Taught by Experience: Izuku learned how to fight as a vigilante by experience, knowing various dirty tricks and being able to improvise in a fight.
  • Tempting Fate: Izuku is disappointed when he finds out he is expected to be doing rescue training during a field trip, since rescuing was his strongest aspect. Said field trip is to the Unforseen Simulations Joint, which is attacked by the League of Villains.
  • There Are No Therapists: Averted - Tenya ends up going to see Hound Dog after he overhears Izuku recommending that Uraraka see him.
  • Title Drop: Chapter 9 is simply titled "I Am (Left to the Maelstrom)".
  • Trauma-Induced Amnesia: Implied - Bakugou mentions Izuku going missing when he was seven years old, alongside his mother, Mitsuki, suspecting that his father was both abusive and a Villain, whilst Izuku remembers being taken to an orphanage at four.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Chapter 5 ends with Izuku going into a Heroic BSoD and being taken from his train-car home, alongside the revelation that Izuku had never been registered with an orphanage, indicating he may have false memories.
    • Chapter 8 ends with Izuku and Bakugou both being kidnapped by the League of Villains after Izuku is hit with a sleep dart and pulled through a warp gate.
  • Vigilante Man: After taking out a would-be mugger with his hydrokinetic powers, Izuku becomes the Vigilante Riptide before being accepted into UA's Hero course.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: Eraserhead forces both Izuku and Shinsou to leave the train car they had made their home after the USJ attack, citing that the League of Villains knew who Izuku was and were coming after him.

Alternative Title(s): Maelstrom


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