Continuing Tales


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

Part 19 of 35

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Marinette didn't go home.

She ran.

She ran, she leapt, she swung through the streets. Away, away, away. Though she knew Paris was safe, she pretended that the city needed her, that she was swinging towards an akuma. The thought of being alone in her house, with the knowledge of what she'd just seen, was too much to stand.

Try as she might, Ladybug could not outrun her memories. Old and new ones were dotted around the city, like markers on a treasure map. A bench where they'd laughed here, a bridge where they'd fought an akuma there. A lamp-post, a rooftop, a tree lined street. It was everywhere. He was everywhere. They were everywhere. It was impossible to escape.

Like the Avenue des Champs-Élysées, reminding her of the time her and Chat snuck into the fancy white-and-gold Mc Donald's as a joke. At first, Chat had been worried about eating the junk food, saying he wasn't allowed it at home, but he'd come around when the cashiers gave them food for free.

Of course he wasn't allowed junk food dummy! HE'S A MODEL! He's THE model! THE MODEL YOU HAD PLASTERED ON YOUR WALLS WHEN YOU WERE FIFTEEN.

Tossing that thought to the ground, Ladybug continued on her midnight race around the city. It led her past the Trocadero and the gardens beyond. The place had once been hers and hers alone, but now it was theirs. A liminal space where they were only just something to each other, and yet everything at the same time. Marinette and Chat. Ladybug and Adrien. Separate. Yearning. Pining. Blind. Oblivious.

Ladybug ended her mad dash by swinging up to the biggest marker on the treasure map of their lives. The sight of their first true kiss.

Ladybug climbed. She climbed without thought. She climbed with the ferocity and fierceness of someone trying to leave something behind. Instinct and panic guided her. The need for comfort merged with the need to be away, to hide out of sight, to remain unseen and untouched by all.

When she was thoroughly entrenched inside the mesh of steel beams and wire cages, Ladybug finally, finally came to a rest. Her back slammed against a beam and she sank down, slowly, her hair tangling itself, her face crumpling. When she reached the floor, her arms wrapped around her knees and she buried her face in them, her world becoming dark.

She needed to breathe.

She couldn't breathe.

She was lost.

She was found.

She knew everything.

She understood nothing.

There could be no denying what she saw, what she'd heard. Adrien had called the little black cat-like creature "Plagg". Plagg was Chat Noir's Kwami. She'd seen Plagg in Adrien's room, and Plagg had seen her. Although she couldn't make out their conversation, she'd noticed enough of their mannerisms to know the pair were familiar with each other. It couldn't be that Plagg had randomly shown up in Chat's house which, admittedly, was one of her initial denials- just before the internal screaming had begun.

Ladybug knew a partnership when she saw one. That was a partnership. Plagg was Adrien's Kwami.

Chat Noir was Adrien Agreste, Adrien Agreste was Chat Noir, and Marinette was Going. To. DIE.

This is your own fault, she thought as she clutched her hair, letting out a short shriek, you saw it! You saw it and you denied it! How many times did you ignore your instincts for STUPID reasons because you're a STUPID GIRL with STUPIDITY in your STUPID STUPIDNESS of a STUPID BRAIN? What the hell did you think was going to happen Marinette you GRADE-A DORKATRON FREAK?!

"Oh god," she whispered, "oh god, oh god, oh god, what am I going to do?"

She remained still, silently panicking, for a long time. Ladybug listened to the faint sounds of her city below her, allowed the newfound knowledge to break through her trembling frame and settle deep inside her. Her question, however, remained unanswered. What was she going to do?

She couldn't rest for long, and soon she was standing, pacing. Her breathing evened out but her mind was still reeling. All of the little moments she'd shared with Adrien and Chat, not just the week but from the past three years too, flew through her mind in rapid succession. Each one was like a puzzle piece, firmly slotting into place. Things she'd missed, things she'd dismissed, things she'd vehemently denied.

Adrien Agreste was Chat Noir. She'd been kissing Chat Noir and Adrien Agreste at the same time. Because he was the same person.

Chat Noir was Adrien Agreste. She'd been listening to Adrien Agreste and Chat Noir professing his need to find her, his dream of sharing a life with her, at the same time. Because he was the same person.

Chat Noir was Adrien Agreste, who'd confessed to liking her- Marinette Dupain-Cheng, earlier in the day.

"I have feelings for you, more than friendship, and it's not right. You're so amazing, and I'm sorry. I'm sorry I didn't realise it sooner but, I can't. I can't have feelings for you."

The beginnings of a smile played on the corner of her lips, butterflies fluttered through her chest, and she wrapped her arms around herself. As the smile grew, Ladybug took a few tentative steps out of the shadows, to the edge of the tower where the lights glowed. The spotlights swirled and, when Ladybug looked at them, they were pointing towards Adrien's home.

Her chin wobbled, her feet swayed, she leaned against one of the beams. The sob escaped her lips before she could stop it. Her vision went blurry…

… and then she laughed. As the tears spilled from her eyes, she laughed. Through ragged breathes and trembling fingers, which brushed her tear-soaked cheeks, she laughed. Ladybug closed her eyes, tilted her head back, crying and laughing; full of joy and shock, promise and possibility, but above all things full of love. Her song of melancholic joy was lost to the wind, like scattering leaves in the autumn time. It was her moment, and hers alone.

She hadn't realised her miraculous was beeping until the pink flash of surrounded her. But she was safe, the steel beams were wide, and she always carried cookies on her patrols for this very reason. Not that it mattered.

"Marinette?" Tikki's voice was gentle and Marinette felt, rather than saw, her touch her arm in concern.

"It was him," she choked, awed, enthralled, baffled, "it was always him. It was- it was him Tikki! This whole time. I've been such an idiot!" And with that she descended into a fresh wave of laughter and sobs. Honestly what a mess she'd gotten them both into.

"Yes, but are you ok?"

"Ok? OK?! Of course I'm not ok!" Marinette beamed as tears continued to spill down her face- a raging torrent of confusion and elation. She began to hiccup; her nose became stuffy. It wasn't a pretty sight, but she couldn't care less, "the guy I love and the guy I like are the same person. They've been the same people the whole time I've known them- and I'm a total and complete moron- and they BOTH- I mean he both- I mean he likes me!"

"Marinette, please breathe. I know this a lot to take, but you need to calm down," Tikki soothed, landing on her shoulder. Taking a cookie from her jacket pocket, Marinette unwrapped it from the cling-film and handed it to Tikki, still sniffling. Nevertheless, she did heed Tikki's words. Once Tikki had taken the cookie, munching it absent-mindedly, Marinette closed her eyes. Her hands clenched, and unclenched as she took in a few calming breaths. In her mind's eye, she pictured all the things which calmed her; a sunlit afternoon of sewing, the smell of her parents cooking, Alya's confidence, Nino's eyes lighting up when he showed her a new piece of music…

A moonlit cathedral, a boy holding an umbrella, a kiss or two, or three. A future home. A promise.

Her tears were silent now, steadier than before and, when her eyes peeled open, she found Tikki had finished the cookie. The pair stared at each other for a moment. Marinette offered her a wet smile. Tikki tilted her head to the side, nuzzling into Marinette's cheek.

"So what are you going to do?" she asked.

There was the question again. But, coming from someone else made Marinette strangely more at ease. She could answer other people's questions far easier than she could answer her own. Reassuring others was something she was actually good at, even if her own mind was a hot mess.

Marinette paused, turning her head to face towards the city- stretching out like a sea of starlight before her fingertips.

Ladybug was, if nothing, a girl of action. It was her actions, her words, which had started the pair down this long path of discovery. It was her actions which caused her to discover Plagg in Adrien's room-

It would be her actions, she realised, that mended the cracks in Adrien's heart.

"I have to tell him," she whispered, spinning back to Tikki with a face full of fire "I have to. Tomorrow night, when I see him at Alix's party. It's not the best time, but I can't stand by waiting for some perfect romantic moment when I know my partner is out there hurting."

Marinette found strength in her words, used them to lay a foundation of solid stone. She stepped on them, let them lift her into the light of determination. Did it disappoint her, that he hadn't realised Marinette was Ladybug yet? A little, she realised shamefully, but only a little. After all, she'd be a hypocrite if she was truly upset by it. No. The thing that mattered was Adrien liked her, both sides of her, just as Tikki had said before.

Her wonderful, caring, sweet cat was so desperate not to hurt anyone that he was hurting himself instead. Suffering in silence. Marinette shook her head, refusing to allow him to be in pain for something she knew she could fix.

"I told him I'd never let him burn," she whispered, "I meant that."

"Marinette," Tikki gasped and, when she met her Kwami's eyes she was surprised to see them watering, "I'm so proud of you."

Marinette blinked in confusion.


"You've grown up so much," Tikki explained, wiping her eyes, "I don't know if you would have been able to handle finding this out three years ago. But here you are, ready to face up to your partner! Ready to take responsibility. You really do love him and it shows. I'm proud of how strong you're being."

Unable to take the praise, Marinette dropped her gaze to the floor, her cheeks flushed.

"I guess? I can only do what I think is right. Besides," she snapped her head wide, fear flooding through her at her sudden realisation, "what if Plagg tells Adrien I saw him?!"

"Nope. Not going to happen." Tikki's expression was distinctly unamused, her lips lined in a half-grimace. Before Marinette could question her, Tikki continued, "I know Plagg. He'd find it funnier if he didn't say anything, plus he wouldn't consider it his… business to interfere."

It appeared as though Tikki was skirting around the issue that Plagg was simply a trouble maker. Based on the brief moments she'd seen (or heard) the Kwami, she could believe it. That actually reassured her more than anything.

"Well," she said, lifting her chin skyward, "I guess it's up to me then."

"What do you mean he's not coming?!"

Alya's shrugged her shoulders, her indigo-sequined dress sparkling in the light, and Marinette felt her stomach drop in disappointment. All the tension throughout the day, the extra preparations she'd made to ensure she looked her very best, the words she'd practiced in front of her mirror, all of it was for nothing?

Really? REALLY?!

Despite her initial trepidation towards confessing to Adrien at Alix's party, it had actually turned out to be a pretty romantic setting. Alix's house was huge, as the way things go with old money, and Rose had helped her family decorate. Being hosted on a warm summer night, the party was in the garden. A wooden dance floor had been built specifically for the event and there was a large white marquee in case it rained. The décor was black and pink, Alix's favourite colours, and small lanterns hung around the dance floor. Most of the old gang had managed to make it, along with Alix's huge family. Marinette couldn't imagine it being very relaxing, to host such an event. In fact, she'd barely seen Alix, apart from when she'd said hello and told them where the food was.

That was where they'd migrated to, the edge of the dance floor where the food was. Large white tables were festooned with flutes of champagne, bottles of beer, mini sandwiches and other light snacks which Nino was already stuffing his face with.

Marinette grabbed a flute of a champagne, chugging it with absolutely zero grace. Yeah, this'll solve your problems Marinette.

"Yeah, I know right? Total bummer," Nino shrugged, tugging at his stiff shirt collar, "he got dragged to a dinner party one of his dad's partners was hosting or something- last minute thing. He seemed pissed about it. Well about as pissed as my boy gets anyway- you know the little puppy scowl thing he does?" Nino paused, trying to imitate his best friend's pout as best as he could. Were the world not crashing around her, Marinette would have found it hilarious, "Like that. So I know he's in super-mad territory."

"The woes of the mega-rich eh?" Alya grumbled, rubbing her eyes, "god if I was rich the first thing I'd do is get laser eye surgery, I hate these shitty contact lenses."

"You know what would be even cooler?" Nino replied, the pair of them totally oblivious to Marinette's obvious mental breakdown, "if laser eye surgery actually gave you laser eyes."

"We could help out if an akuma attacked," Alya agreed, browsing the beer selection with a wrinkled nose.

"Exactly," Nino nodded, slipping an arm around her waist, "literal laser eye surgery. It's the future."

I wonder if they'd notice if I crushed this champagne flute over my head? Marinette mused with a sigh, oh well- I guess I could always tell Adrien tomorrow, at the spa.

When Alya suggested they record a short video to send Adrien, hopefully to cheer him up, Marinette panicked. She couldn't exactly say no, but she didn't want her first words to him (since discovering his identity) to be a recorded message. Her heart thrummed in her chest as Alya began recording, shooting a peace sign at her phone camera as Nino poked his head around to get in the frame. What was she going to say?!

Before she knew it, Alya was swinging the camera around to her- prompting her to give Adrien a message- and suddenly she felt like a stuttering, shy fifteen-year-old all over again. She tried to ignore Alya's raised eyebrow.

Alya finished the recording with a signature, self-mocking, Ladyblog salute. She switched the camera off, turning accusingly towards Marinette. However, she didn't get the chance to say anything before a voice called out to them from across the dance floor.

"Oh! There you guys are!"

Marinette turned just in time to see Nathanael making his way through the crowds. Despite her annoyance at the Adrien-less (and Chat Noir-less!) evening she had ahead of her, she was glad to see Nathanael smiling and at ease. He usually disliked large crowds.

"Hey!" she grinned enveloping him in a hug, "how's it going?"

"Ok I guess," he replied waving to the others, "you all look great!"

"Aw shucks," Marinette chuckled, waving her hand, her short pink dress sashaying as she did so, "you clean up good yourself my buddy! Want a beer?"

Nino raised his eyebrow, folding his arms across his chest. Alya shot him a stern look. Marinette missed this little interaction.

"Not even if it was chocolate flavoured," Nathanael pulled a face, "anyways have you seen Alix? I need to give her her birthday present."

"She's talking to the DJ I think," Nino replied curtly, and Marinette fixed him with a curious stare. Nino ignored her, instead staring at Nathanael, eyes ever-so-slightly narrowed. She'd never seen Nino so…protective? Was that the right word? Or maybe he was still sore that Alix's family had chosen a professional DJ for her party.

Nathanael frowned, looking about as confused as Marinette felt, and fidgeted nervously under Nino's gaze.

"Err thanks? Well I guess I better head that way then," and before Marinette could say anything else, Nathanael turned on his heel and dashed away.

Marinette wheeled around to face Nino, a scowl crossing her face.

"That was rude," she accused, clutching her champagne flute tightly, "what's your problem with Nath?"

Alya, for some strange reason, groaned and sat down on one of the white garden chairs- stuffing a mini éclair in her mouth. Nino at least, had the decency to look sheepish. He reached up and scratched the back of his neck awkwardly.

"Sorry, I guess ever since I saw you two the other day, I've been kind of worried. I didn't mean to be so- you know- grrr. I just don't want to see you get hurt again."

"What do you mean?"

Nino glanced over at Alya, who waved a hand at him. He gulped.

"Well, you know you've been acting pally-pally with Nath recently?"

Following in the footsteps of Alya, Marinette groaned.

"This again?!" she cried, glaring at them both, her arms waving in protest. A small amount of champagne flew out of the flute and landed on Nino's cheek. "I told Alya nothing was going on and I meant it. Wait-" she paused, her eyes narrowing further, "so you were the one who saw the stupid holding hands thing, and told Alya about it? Jesus Christ Nino-"

"Oh boy she's mad at that," Nino's voice warbled, his shoulders tensed. His eyes scanned the garden, mapping out an escape route.

Marinette froze, her eyes widening, her heart jittering to a halt.

"Nino," her voice was low, dangerously low, and Nino gulped again, "what did you do?"

Nino shuffled backwards but Alya, who wasn't even looking at them, reached up from her spot and grabbed his sleeve, tugging him back towards Marinette's wrath.

"Errr…. See, it's kind of funny when you think about it?" he chuckled feebly- though it petered out quickly when Marinette's expression darkened and she became a vision of death in pink.

"What. Did. You. DO?!"

Nino gulped a third time and Marinette was surprised his mouth wasn't bone dry at this point.

"Ok, ok. Well when I saw you, Adrien was there too and- and- andImayhaveaccidentallytoldhimaboutthetimeyouandNathdated."

Marinette dropped her champagne flute, its contents spilling around the floor around them, the glass smashing into a million pieces as it landed on the makeshift wooden dance floor.


"I'm sorry!" Nino hasted to say, holding his hands up in surrender, "I was thinking out loud, I was worried! See the thing is I think Adrien- I think he has a crush on you- I think he has for a while but I didn't want to say. It wasn't my place to you know?"

"You think he-" Marinette spluttered, face turning redder by the second.

"But I think I fucked up because now he's, like, super sad because he thinks you and Nath are a thing."

"HE THINKS NATHANAEL AND I ARE A THING?!" Marinette screeched, stepping closer to Nino. Nino stepped backwards again, frantic.

"Babe help!" he cried to Alya, who was busy checking her nails, "I think she's gonna kill me!"

"Shame hon," Alya replied carelessly, crossing her legs and browsing her phone "Would you like orchids or lilies at your funeral?"


"Nino Lahiffe!" Marinette yelled, not caring that her fellow party goers were staring, not caring that Nino's face had turned a unique shade of mottled green, "you have about three seconds to explain what the hell you were thinking before I bludgeon you to death with a turntable!"


As if the moment couldn't get any worse, Nathanael came strolling back over, concern laced in his tone. Marinette buried her scream in the palms of her hands, her makeup smudging as she did so. Adrien liked her, Chat liked her, but he thought she liked Nathanael. Which meant if she revealed herself he was going to think LADYBUG liked Nathanael- whilst she'd been kissing him!

Yup. I'm fucked. My life is over. Goodbye maturity, sorry I'm not as grown up as you think I am Tikki. I'm going to go live in the Alps and befriend mountain sheep. I'm sure I can make coats out of their wool or whatever. If anything it'll get me lots of Pinterest followers.

"Is everything ok?" Nathanael asked, "I heard my name called and I was-"

But none of them got to hear the rest of Nathanael's speech. As he came to stand by Marinette's side, his feet slipped out from under him- skidding in the pool of Marinette's dropped champagne. He tumbled backwards with a startled yelp, reaching out for something which could stop his fall. Unfortunately, the thing he grabbed happened to be Marinette's elbow, which only proceeded to make Marinette crash down right on top of him.

They landed hard on the floor.

I thought it was supposed to be adding insult to injury, not injury to insult, Marinette thought dizzily.

"Holy shit," Nino scrambled forwards whilst Alya leapt from her chair, "are you two ok?"

Marinette felt something warm against her shoulder, which was lying on top of Nathanael's arm. She moaned, feeling a small ache where she'd landed roughly, but was otherwise fine.

"I'm all right," she grumbled, letting Nino help her up, "what about you Nath?"

Nathanael didn't reply but, even from where Marinette was standing, she could hear his breathing coming out in short ragged bursts. It was then that she noticed the small wet patch on her shoulder was blood. Nath's blood.

"Nath?!" she called, spinning back around to face him. His eyes were screwed shut in pain, he was sitting upright, cradling his left arm.

"Ouch," was his only response.

Adrien slammed the door to bathroom shut, leaning against it with a huff.

This had to be, without a shadow of a doubt, the most boring evening of his entire life. It was made even more unbearable by the knowledge of where he should have been. He should, in fact, have been at a party with his friends, he should have been having fun. Instead he was stuck making nice with boring business people. For once, he and Plagg seemed to agree on something. This sucked.

Honestly he'd lied about going to the bathroom just so he could gain a moment of reprieve from the sheer exhausting monotony of it all. The grey suits and the greyer voices. At least the manor house his dad's business buddy lived in was huge. He could pretend he'd gotten lost, which gave him at least a few extra minutes of browsing on his phone. His father wouldn't be pleased, if he even noticed he was gone. But right now, Adrien actually didn't care.

Plagg flew out of his pocket with a long-suffering sigh.

"Please don't become a business man," he grumbled, "I don't think I can take another evening like this."

"Me neither buddy," Adrien agreed, handing the Kwami a well-deserved lump of cheese whilst pulling out his phone.

His eyebrows darted up in surprise.

"Alya sent me a video!" he gasped, astonished she'd even thought of him. Here he was believing they'd be off having the time of their lives without him. He was touched.

"So play it then, dummy," Plagg replied, his mouth still full. Adrien shot him a reproachful glare. Honestly, it would be a miracle if his Kwami resisted being a pig for more than five minutes.

Choosing not to dignify the insult with a response, Adrien opened the video and waited for it to load.

The video itself was fairly dark, and Adrien had to pause to adjust the brightness of his screen before playing it again. His chest ached when he saw Alya's face come into view with a cheerful greeting, heard the faint sounds of music blaring in the background. He wanted to be there so badly.

"Yo duuuude!" Adrien laughed as Nino burst into his screen, pulling silly faces, "sorry you couldn't be here bro! Miss you!"

"Totally!" Alya nodded, "Get your ass over here! Sneak outta that boring dinner party! That's what he should do, right Mari?"

Adrien's breath caught as Alya swung the camera around to Marinette. Marinette, who yesterday Adrien had confessed his feelings for. Marinette, who was wearing an adorable pink dress. Marinette, who was looking into the camera lens with a shy smile which made his heart melt into warm goo.

"Umm, w- well I don't know about that Alya- we don't want him to get in trouble with his dad!" she chuckled nervously, playing with her loose wavy hair, "but…"

Marinette took a deep breath as her gaze relaxed, gentle and so very lovely that Adrien instantly felt heat creeping up his face. How am I going to get over her if she keeps being so cute?

"I really wish you were here, Adrien." Her voice was low, almost a whisper, and Adrien inched closer to the screen to hear her better, willing himself to fall through the screen, to be there with her, to grant her wish, "everything is less fun without you around. I don't want you to feel bad about missing the party though, so I guess I'll say- umm- see you tomorrow! I'm looking forward to playing tennis with you. We're… we're going to be great partners. I can feel it."

Adrien's mouth dropped open. If he wasn't blushing before, he certainly was now.

Was she- was she returning his feelings?

"You'll catch flies like that," Plagg cackled as Alya finished the video with a cheery salute.

Adrien snapped his mouth shut and buried his face in his hands with a pitiful whine.

"You know," Plagg mused, ignoring his chosen's plight, "if the whole thing with Ladybug doesn't work out, you should date Marinette."

Removing his hands from his face, Adrien threw Plagg an incredulous (and highly suspicious) glare.

"What?" Plagg shrugged, "I'm just saying. She seems cute, and anyone who gets you breaking the rules is ok in my book. I still can't believe she got you to break into a building!" he chuckled, "girl's got style."

"Plagg why would you be pointing me towards Marinette when you know who Ladybug is?" he scowled, "you saw her the other night!"

Plagg froze mid-air, looking like a cat who'd been caught with the cream.

"Huh?" he replied, voice unusually high pitched. Adrien crinkled his brows, confused.

"The other night when Ladybug and I were kissing without our masks on. You came over and interrupted us- which by the way I still haven't forgiven you for," Adrien explained, crossing his arms with a pout, "you must have seen who she is right?"

Plagg let out a puff of air.

"Oh that? Nah I didn't bother looking," Plagg replied.

"You didn't bother?!" Adrien cried, shooting upright. Honestly, where on Earth were Plagg's priorities?

"No why would I?" Plagg shot back defensively, "unlike you- I actually don't care who Ladybug is as long as she does a good job."

Adrien didn't buy that for a second but, before he had a chance to respond, his phone buzzed with a text from Nino. Scowling at Plagg one last time for good measure, Adrien diverted his attention to Nino's text.

Nino: Dude this night got craaaazy!

He'd attached a photo to the message, which Adrien opened curiously to get a closer look. It appeared to be a photo of a large white building. An ambulance was parked outside.

Adrien panicked.



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

Part 19 of 35

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