Continuing Tales

Both of You

A Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir Story
by Maerynn

Part 19 of 53

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Upon hearing the loud and impromptu ruckus coming from her room, the blood suddenly ran cold in Marinette's veins. Scenarios crazier than the other playing on repeat in her anxious mind, the young lady made the easiest choice of her entire life right there and then. What if Hawkmoth had finally found out Ladybug's civilian identity and had come to abduct her precious kwami? What if some idiot bird had somehow found its way into her bedroom and had mistaken the small red magical being for its lunch? Secrets identities be damned, Marinette instantly rushed upstairs without skipping a single heartbeat, completely ignoring Adrien being hot on her trail. Nothing mattered to her anymore from that second apart from Tikki's safety.

However, the scene waiting for both of them as they burst through the trapdoor wasn't something either of them could've possibly imagined. Both teens stood dumbfounded with wide eyes and jaws slightly slack from astonishment for a moment before the very singular sight, a once in a lifetime occasion, to say the very least.

Entangled on Marinette's bedroom floor, stuck under Tikki's handmade bed that had very likely fallen from its designated shelf, taking both them and the shelf itself in its fall, were lying awkwardly Tikki and another small creature, about the same size but completely black with very catlike features. Pointy black ears, greenish beady eyes and sporting cute small whiskers, he even donned the cutest of cat tails she had ever seen before.

"I'm really sorry, Marinette, Plagg and I intended to give you kids some privacy and it kinda went awry. We truly didn't mean to disrupt you." Tikki said sheepishly, all the while trying with next to nothing results to get herself out of her precarious position and smiling apologetically at her charge.

Marinette kneeled wordlessly beside the pair of distressed kwamis to help them separate their hopelessly intertwined limbs, her movements somewhat mechanical and a little twitchy. Her expression still blank, the young lady got up once she had successfully freed the magical beings and put back the shelf and Tikki's small bed where it rightfully belonged, her mind visibly madly going at full speed. Adrien could tell she was struggling against the shreds of evidence, refusing to put two and two together, and that she was quickly losing the fight. After all, how else could she explain why there were two kwamis in her room?

The young woman was standing in the middle of her room, her head bowed down, her shoulders tensed and her fists clenched at her sides. Her breathing was laborious and she was carefully avoiding meeting Adrien's eyes, hiding behind a curtain of black hair just as if she needed time to process what was happening right before her eyes. He was standing still beside the trapdoor, waiting warily for the woman he loved to connect the painful dots. The blond felt his palms growing sweaty and his heart skipping a few beats. Wrapped into an uncomfortable and pregnant silence, Tikki, Plagg and Adrien all waited and watched Marinette helplessly as reality slowly sunk in. They almost heard a click when she finally brought herself to acknowledge the now very obvious.

She turned - rather calmly, given the circumstances - to face the little black kwami. "You are Chat Noir's kwami."

It wasn't a question, she was simply stating the fact as it was. Plagg flashed her his best smile, not that much unlike the maddening grin of the Cheshire cat she had grown to love so much. "It's a real pleasure to finally get to meet you properly, Marinette. I'm Plagg."

Marinette nodded slowly, her whole body tense as a guitar string, still unsure about how she was expected to react through this whole ordeal. She half-whispered, her head still hung low,"And if you're here, in my room, and there's obviously no one here besides Adrien and me, it must certainly mean..."

This time, it was Plagg's turn to nod eagerly, his grin widening even larger, something Adrien hadn't thought physically possible on his kwami's face.

Marinette's mind desperately tried to reel in the new information and all of its implications, as her nails painfully dug into her palms. Her entire relationship with the kind and selfless model she had been pining after for so long were suddenly taking a whole new meaning, a whole new lighting. As her brain was replaying the few last months events considering that valuable new piece of information, Marinette found her heart skipping a few beats in her chest against her will. Something dawned on her, and suddenly she shrieked loudly before turning to Adrien, anger returning full flare without prior notice. She poked him with an accusatory index in the chest repeatedly and aggressively, verbally and physically attacking him. "If YOU really ARE Chat Noir, it means you... you… we..."

Adrien had a little shameful and somewhat still shy smile. "I-I'm the one who made love to you that very memorable night, yes. A night I won't ever forget, that I can assure you."

Marinette fought the urge to scream at the top of her lungs with all her might. She felt trapped, fooled, and she had more and more trouble maintaining her composure. "Great. Freakin' fantastic."

She began restlessly pacing around her room, burying her anxious hands in her dark hair. She wasn't quite sure how to react to all of this. Hell, she didn't even know if she should be angry with him anymore!

Of course he was Chat Noir. Both boys overlapped in her mind, both men she had loved and cherished becoming an all new person she knew better than she had ever known them separately. Chat Noir's suspected loneliness was now obvious in the light of the reclusive life Adrien Agreste led. The boy's endless kindness was only outmatched by his alter-ego's selflessness. It explained the odd and sudden vacation at Gabriel Agreste's estate out of all places, the unexpected but welcomed apparition of her partner the night of the Gardener attack, why the hero kept appearing without fail on the nights something had happened during the day at school-

"Wait, why did you kiss me then? As Adrien?"

There it was again, the sheepish and regretful smile, making him look like a little boy caught red-handed with both hands in the cookie jar. "Well... It was a spur of the moment thing, to be perfectly honest. I couldn't stop thinking about the night we spent together, and then I found myself staring at your lips. I couldn't resist. Not my smoothest move, I admit, I'm really not proud of that one."

At this, her hesitation whether she should be angry with him or not instantly wavered. She was way beyond mad. "Do you know how it made me feel?" she snarled.

Adrien shook his head, looking miserable. "I can only imagine, and I'll never be able to tell you how much I'm sorry for putting you through this enough."

"Kissing you as Adrien made me feel something, so I felt like utter garbage. I thought you made me CHEAT on Chat, that I had betrayed him!" she hissed between her clenched teeth.

"Good thing you cheated on him with me, then. It did sting a little when you rejected me, though, even if I'd known the reason why all along."

She could tell he was trying to lighten her mood with lame jokes, but it was very obvious he was miserably failing. Marinette let herself drop on her couch trying to take it all in, her head resting between her hands. The world was spinning around her, and she felt on the very verge of fainting. She didn't even flinch when he sat next to her, looking at her face worriedly, gently stroking her knee with his thumb.

Adrien was Chat Noir. Chat Noir was Adrien.

Both of them claimed to be madly in love with her, but she just couldn't manage to wrap her mind around it.

They weren't in love with Marinette.

Something about this whole ordeal was still bugging her badly. "That doesn't solve anything. Chat Noir or Adrien, you're not in love with ME. You love Ladybug. You love the mask, the perfect girl that keeps saving Paris and that just isn't me. I'm just a clumsy girl that constantly make mistakes and can't manage to get to school on time."

He shrugged, scooting even closer to her and hesitantly reached for her hand before ultimately deciding against it. "I won't lie to you, Marinette. I've loved Ladybug since the very first day we met, and she was the only one in my heart for a very long time. How could I possibly feel the same about my shy classmate that never spoke full sentences to me? I didn't know you, Marinette. Until you let Chat Noir in your room one night. Then I was granted with the incredible chance to get to know an amazing girl, and you wormed your way further into my heart with every minute I got to spend with you. I fell in love with both of you. Up until a few weeks ago, it bothered me. Not anymore."

She snickered weakly, trying to reign in her emotions that were all over the place. "How so?"

Adrien eagerly took her hand, gently stroking her thumb with his own. She didn't shy away from his touch, and it made his heart jumped a beat. Maybe all wasn't lost after all.

"I wanted both of you, I loved both of you with every single fiber of my being. It drove me crazy, the way I couldn't get myself to stop thinking about her even though I was falling for you, Marinette, falling hard. It disgusted me to be this kind of guy, a jackass with a fickle heart bound to hurt every girl dumb enough to love him back. When I found out you were Ladybug, I wasn't disappointed, I was THRILLED."

She winced a little, shocked by his outburst. "Adri-"

He cut her off, way too much grateful to finally get a chance to say what was on his mind to let it go to waste. "Knowing that you out of all people are Ladybug felt like winning the lottery. It means that I'm not the two-faced jerk I thought I'd become. Loving you both means loving you whole. And that's what I always wanted. To love just about everything about someone. I meant every word of what I said to your parents. I didn't fall in love with you, Marinette. I walked into love with you, with my eyes wide open, choosing to take every step along the way. I do believe in fate and destiny, but I also believe we are only fated to do the things that we'd choose anyway. And I'd choose you; in a hundred lifetimes, in a hundred worlds, in any version of reality, I'd find you and I'd choose you.***"

Placing a soft peck on her cheek, he drew back, giving her space to let it all sink in. She shook her head warily, refusing to let all those months of lies and twisted games with her heart be forgiven that easily.

"Adrien, you never thought about me this way before knowing that I'm Ladybug. I'm really sorry, I don't wanna seem to be overly suspicious, but I can't help but think you wouldn't ever have taken interest in me if I was only plain old Marinette instead of leading an exciting double-life."

Adrien chuckled lightly, a playful glint in his green eyes, and put his finger on her lips. "That's where you're dead wrong, princess. I've liked you for a very long time now. I was just too dumb to realize it. According to Nino, everyone in our class knew about my crush on you but me."


"And I actually can prove to you that I already liked the pre-Ladybug you."

"W-What do you mean?" she stuttered, taken aback.

Adrien smiled warmly and put his phone in her hands. "Scroll down my SMS conversation with Nino until the night of the Akuma attack at the countryside house. Before the attack. Before you got the wound that got me suspicious."

Now curious, Marinette obliged, quickly swiping the conversation, noticing many lame puns and silly theories about Chloe being either a witch or a vampire along the way. She finally found the right date, and began reading.

[21:12] Nino: Hey man. How u doing?

[21:14] Adrien: Going crazy dude. SOS.

[21:15] Nino: What's up?

[21:15] Adrien: Can't stop thinking about her. Mari.

[21:17] Nino: What about Ladybug?

[21:18] Adrien: I know, so fucked up right now. Smiled at me when she left, and I can't stop thinking about her lips now. I think I'm gonna go mad. I wanna kiss her so bad. Cannot think about anything else.

[21:18] Nino: About time.

[21:19] Adrien : WTF?

[21:20] Nino: U like her since day one. Like, even Chloe noticed.

[21:21] Adrien: What? No!

[21:24] Nino: Dude. U smile like an idiot every time she smiles/laugh/talk/trip/move/breath. To be more obvious u'd have to wear a sign over your head.

[21:25] Adrien: That much?

[21:27] Nino: Go get her.

[21:27] Adrien: FUCK BRB

[21:30] Nino: Dude?

[21:37] Nino: Adrien?

[23:39] Nino: Dude r u alright? Called you 22 times now. Gonna call the cops if u don't reply in the next 5.

[23:40] Adrien: Back, sry. Akumatized neighbor.

[23:47] Nino: Woohoo! Some Ladybug time for little fanboy?

[23:48] Adrien: Not rly. Was way too worried about Mari.

[23:49] Nino: She okay?

[23:51] Adrien: Yeah checked on her. A little bit shaken, but I think she'll be fine.

[23:52] Nino: Aww 2 bad, u could've comforted her! *wink wink*

[23:53] Adrien: NINO! Not going to take advantage of her.

[23:56] Nino: Just saying.

When she put the phone down, indicating she had finished reading it all, Adrien pressed his forehead against hers, whispering tenderly, "What about you, princess? Can you love both the kitty and the boy?"

**Credits to Kiersten White for that awesome love declaration that fit the bill almost too perfectly!***

Both of You

A Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir Story
by Maerynn

Part 19 of 53

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