Continuing Tales

Both of You

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

Part 23 of 53

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Adrien and Marinette had been chatting casually on the school steps for a few minutes when they heard a loud high-pitched squeal from the other side of the street, closely followed with Alya rushing toward them, a wide grin on her face, a Nino truly dumbfounded close on her heels. "Mari! I missed you so much! How did you manage to convince her to leave her lair, Adrien? Her parents wouldn't even let me see her!"

The blond blushed, suddenly very self-conscious of the proximity between himself and the object of his affections. "W-Well I-I..."

That's when Alya's scrutinizing gaze finally fell on their joined hands. Their fingers were still laced together in Marinette's lap, and he was gently stroking the side of her hand with his thumb. Not in a reassuring manner, as if he were trying to platonically comfort her. The gesture was full of tenderness. Of sheer love.

"OH – MY – GOD!" Alya squealed, tugging violently on Nino's sleeve: "Look, look! It's happening!"

Both Adrien and Marinette were now blushing furiously, neither of them quite appreciating the sudden and unwanted attention brought upon them. But still, he couldn't bring himself to let go of her hand; he was still too afraid she would fly away from him if he did. Marinette, however, while she didn't try to pull away from him, was quick to try and hush her obnoxious best friend. "Alya! The entire school doesn't need to know!"

The grin on the bespectacled girl grew even wider, "Hell yeah, the whole world needs to know about this, when did it finally happened? When did you two make it official?"

Both their faces fell, and they blushed even darker if it was humanly possible.

They both were painfully aware that their entire class was now staring at them, waiting a bit too avidly for their answer. Marinette reassuringly squeezed his fingers as she spoke, a new habit of hers he found himself quickly growing quite fond of. "W-w-e d-didn't discussed it yet, act-"

Seeing Marinette being so uneasy, so lost under all this unwanted attention, it made something snap inside him. 'To hell with it, they're already staring at us. I'll just give them what they want." With a flourish, Adrien reluctantly let go of her hand and shifted himself to land on one knee before the raven-haired girl, claiming her hand once more back in his, ignoring her suddenly panicked expression. "Mari, princess, will you grant me the honor of being mine?"

She chuckled, hiding her face with her free hand. Seeing him doing something so silly, yet so flamboyant made her wonder how she didn't see through the mask earlier. Right now, a lot of his Chat Noir persona was showing, and she couldn't help but marvel at how nobody else seemed to connect the obvious dots. She gazed into the green eyes she loved so much, for a second forgetting they weren't alone, and softly whispered, "Of course, silly."

A loud cheer erupted from their classmates as Adrien stretched himself to place a chaste peck on her smiling lips, and she could swear she even saw a teacher or two clapping happily.

He sat back beside her, taking her hand again, eyeing Alya who, of course, had filmed the whole thing. "Happy now? Is the show over?"

The brunette frowned, looking at some list on her phone. "Well no, now I've lost the bet."

Bemused, Adrien and Marinette stammered together, "T-T-The w-what now?"

Nino smiled, a mischievous glint in his eyes. "The bet. Going around for a little more than two years now. As to when you two will finally get together."

"Alright now, who took March 13th of this year?"

Before anyone could reply, Marinette jumped on her feet, glaring at her best friend with unconcealed fury, her fists tightly clenched at her sides. "Are you really making money out of this? So all my tears, all my self-doubt, all the times I was heartbroken over him, it was just a game to earn money for you?"

Alya snapped her attention back to her friend, noticing the shadow in her blue eyes, her lips stretched into a thin line. "Mari, don't be like that. Be a good sport."

Annoyed, Marinette asked, a little bit too harshly, "Be a good sport? When this is what you do with the things I confide in you? Run bets around the whole school? What else did you all bet on? Our first fight? Our first kiss? These things are private, Alya. While I'd be happy talking about them with my best friend, I'm not so sure I can trust you anymore."

Adrien watched wordlessly as the brunette visibly deflated, tears welling up in her eyes.


"My love life is not a gamble, Alya. I really thought you valued our friendship more than this."

Marinette spun on her heels, violently shivering, and headed inside the school without looking back at her stunned friends. Adrien frowned slightly and got up too, looking at a defeated Alya, "Marinette's right, that wasn't cool at all."

"I know, I fucked up," was the shaky reply the blond managed to get from the aspirant reporter.

He couldn't bring himself to worry about Alya's obvious stifling guilt, though, his thoughts fully focused on his upset girlfriend. "I'll go after her, don't worry."

Breaking into a sprint, he finally caught up with Marinette inside their classroom and pulled her into a tight hug without giving her time to shy away from him.

She stiffened at first, but soon enough rested her head against his shoulder.

"What's wrong, princess?"

She sighed. "I feel betrayed. My very own best friend ran bets about our relationship, and it hurts like hell."

A sniffle behind them startled them apart, and Marinette found herself face to face with a sheepish Alya. "I-I'm sorry, Marinette. It was really disrespectful of me."

The brunette looked awful, her eyes full of unshed tears, her shoulders slumped and her head bowed down. Avoiding Marinette's eyes, she pushed a wad of cash into her hands. "We intended to give you guys half of the bet money to fund a nice date for both of you since we weren't sure Adrien's dad would let him spend any cash on anything fun… But what you said outside was true, Mari, it was wrong of us to meddle in your relationship. All of our class agreed you should get the whole sum as an apology from all of us."

A wave of sympathy washed over the superheroine. Of course, Alya didn't mean her any harm. She had simply been acting in true Alya fashion, hot-headed, passionate, and too enthusiastic.

She smiled despite the little remnants of her anger lingering, and pulled her friend to her, hugging her tightly. "It's okay, Alya, really. I know you didn't mean any harm, sorry for snapping."

Adrien patted the brunette on the shoulder. "And you should just give the money back to whoever bet on us. Mari and I will manage on our own, though we appreciate the thought."

Their teacher chose this moment to enter the classroom and clear his throat loudly. "If the hugging fest is over, maybe we can begin the lesson?"

Both girls chuckled lightly and slipped into their respective places, giggling to themselves all the while.

Their friendship wasn't lost after all.

As soon as the bell rang, Alya gently nudged Marinette's ribs. "You know, you still have some explaining to do, girl."

Adrien and Nino caught up with them on their way to lunch, the former snaking his left arm around Marinette's waist and softly kissing her temple, making her blush furiously. They sat together in the school courtyard, and she cast a glance at him, seeking reassurance in his beautiful green eyes.

When he nodded, a soft smile on his lips, Marinette turned to her friend. "Alright, Alya, what do you want to know?"

The reporter side of her best friend instantly kicked in, and she grinned from ear to ear. "Well, first... What the hell happened to Mystery Man?"

Taken aback, Marinette looked at Adrien in a panic. "Uhm... erm..."

"As it turned out, it was me all along."

She stared at Adrien in disbelief, while Alya and Nino shrieked, "Wait, what?"

Adrien chuckled. "Well, you see, I took a liking to an online game a few months ago and started talking a lot in-game to this amazing girl; Princess. We really hit it off."

Finally seeing where he was headed with his carefully threaded lie, Marinette sighed with relief and chimed in, "We sure did. I even talked with him about my crush on my cute classmate whom I couldn't even talk to, can you imagine?"

Nino burst out laughing. "Seriously, what were the odds? You're both incredible geeks, but still."

"I know, right?" Adrien continued. "So a few weeks ago, Marinette, or Princess at that time, told me about something that had happened at school that day, and since the exact same thing had happened to Marinette that very same day, I put two and two together. However, I was afraid she would reject me if she knew, so instead, I tried to know her better on this side of the screen, without telling her who I was."

Alya snorted. "What a stupid plan."

"I am now perfectly aware of that, thank you very much."

Marinette smiled, softly patting him on the arm. "However, as you're aware, Alya, Adrien's sudden interest in me only resulted in confusing me more than I already was. So... when he came clean and told me everything, I just... bolted."

Nino shook his head. "Don't tell me this is why you've gone missing for the whole week?"


Adrien smiled at her, relieved to see their friends were buying their lie laced with just enough bits of truth to explain the fallout.

Alya was now openly giggling, "Oh my god, this is precious. So, you struggled all those months to push your feelings for Adrien aside, all because you were falling for Adrien again?"

"Basically, yes."

The brunette grinned. "What a mess! How did you even manage to get her to forgive you, Adrien?"

Her raven-haired friend smiled at him lovingly. "Let's just say he's pretty stubborn when he wants something."

He blushed deeply and brought his hand up to scratch the back of his neck as he always did when he was nervous. "Hey, I barely did anything! I just told you the truth!"

"And stopped by the bakery every single night trying to get my parents to let you talk to me. And when that failed, you declared yourself to no one else than my dad. You're lucky he likes you!"

This time, the four of them burst out laughing, Adrien laughing so hard he had to clutch his sides.

Tears of mirth formed at the corner of their eyes, and Alya wiped them as she attempted to regain her composure. "You two are unbelievable! Leave it to you to get involved in such a mess."

Nino suddenly frowned, prompting Adrien to poke him. "What's the matter, bud?"

"Your children are gonna be disgustingly cute."



They doubled over in laughter, and the young man took the occasion to tease his blond friend a little. "Ladybug will be heartbroken to hear the famous Adrien Agreste is no longer crushing on her!"

Marinette smiled mischievously. "I wouldn't worry too much about her. Word is she finally gave in to Chat Noir's flirting."

Alya almost spat the gulp of juice she had just taken. "What? Where did you see that? Who told you that?"

"My source requested to remain anonymous!"

The aspirant reporter poked her on the shoulder repeatedly. "Oh no, Marinette Dupain-Cheng, you're not getting away with this!"

"My lips are sealed!"

They continued their playful banter until the bell rang. Adrien was always touching Marinette in some way, holding her hand, stroking her back, just sitting next to her so close their legs were barely brushing. It wasn't even remotely inappropriate, he was just there, his skin grazing hers in some way or another at any given time. Alya and Nino thought it was cute how possessive he was of his new girlfriend, but the young lady knew it ran deeper than that.

After three long months of separation, they both needed to adjust to the new reality of actually being allowed to love each other in the open, to touch each other in a way more intimate than just friendship. Marinette didn't mind at all Adrien's constant presence beside her because she craved it just as much as he did.

So when the bell did ring, they headed to class hand in hand, carefully ignoring the constant teasing of their respective best friends.

This was gonna be a good day, finally.

Both of You

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

Part 23 of 53

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