WARNING: The following contains spoilers for My Hero Academia #306, by Kohei Horikoshi, Caleb Cook and John Hunt, available now in English from Viz Media.
My Hero Academia #306 has delivered the manga's most unexpected twist yet. In fact, the chapter in question upends the story's status quo so much, even the series' title has become outdated. Unlike the revelation that Dabi is Toya Todoroki and the truth behind Hawks' father, few could have predicted Deku -- the main hero of the story -- walking away from the high school of his dreams. While we're still in the dark about the details of Deku's present situation thanks to it being an end-of-chapter reveal, it's clear he dropped out of U.A. High School and intends to leave it behind for good. For the next phase of the story, which signs suggest maybe the last, the "academia" aspect of My Hero Academia seems to have concluded.
Deku's decision to drop out comes in the wake of major revelations about One For All. In the chapter prior to #306, Deku learned that One For All has become so powerful the very act of wielding it shortens the lifespan of anyone who isn't Quirkless. Thanks to the dwindling number of Quirkless people in the world, this means Deku is likely the final wielder of One For All -- and that the burden of ending All For One must fall upon him. These revelations have surely had an impact on his decision, and it's likely Deku is leaving U.A. out of the sense that he cannot endanger his classmates by involving them in his burdens.
Yet despite suddenly leaving them all behind, Deku felt he at least owed his classmates an explanation. The chapter shows a few panels of various classmates -- including Uraraka, Mineta and Sero -- reading letters Deku left for them. We're only privy to snippets, but from them, we know that he left a personal letter behind for each one of his classmates. In them, he explains the truth behind One For All. The secret suddenly being exposed to so many people is a major shift when previously Deku hadn't even told the truth to his mom, and it's likely we'll see detailed reactions from Class 1-A in upcoming chapters.
Deku's abrupt departure raises many questions. Is he truly alone, or was he joined by Bakugo and Todoroki, who weren't depicted receiving a letter in this chapter? Is a time skip imminent? Does Deku wearing Gran Torino's cape mean the elderly hero has died? What exactly caused Deku to think of dropping out in the first place? Speculation is rampant, and amid it all only one thing is certain: even if My Hero Academia is heading towards its conclusion, it still has a few surprises left.