Continuing Tales


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

Part 13 of 38

<< Previous     Home     Next >>
Untitled Document

Adrien's knees wobbled and he was glad he was at the back of the crowd so no-one could see his face. At the rate his emotions were flowing through him, if anyone'd seen him they'd probably have thought he was having a fit.

His rage flashed white-hot through him at the thought of what Chloe had done to his beloved Ladybug… to Marinette. He couldn't believe it- Marinette? The cute, shy girl he'd recently developed such strong, undeniable feelings for was also the girl he'd been in love with since day one! Adrien couldn't decide whether to curse the world for Chloe Bourgeois' very existence, or thank fate for the unbelievably lucky coincidence in his love life.

He dimly heard the clamour of the agitated students around Marinette, but the sounds were fuzzy, like he was hearing them through a think pane of glass. He swayed slightly, rather overcome. Everything seemed to be happening all at once- the vicious akuma yesterday, Ladybug's injury, Marinette's sudden accidental reveal, his new-found, overwhelming loathing for Chloe. Now he knew what she'd been holding over Marinette, now he knew it was her fault Ladybug had been too tired to protect herself yesterday… the thought of the blonde had him gritting his teeth and his eyes darkening.

Suddenly, the bell rang for the start of lessons and he was brought out of himself abruptly. The crowd dissipated and everyone peeled off to their various rooms. Adrien didn't trust himself to make eye contact with anyone, so he dashed up the stairs to his classroom. He sat in his seat with his eyes firmly trained on the desk as the rest of the class filed in around him. He could feel a couple of questioning glances trained on his back but he ignored them.

The second bell rang to signal the end of movement time as Nino took his seat next to him, and Adrien frowned as he looked behind himself carefully. He couldn't see Mari in peripheral vision, and he didn't remember seeing her come into the classroom. Where was she? The teacher entered, and began the class.

He was distracted as Chloe sauntered into the classroom late, popping some bubblegum in her mouth. He fought the urge to storm up to her and slap her fake blonde hair off her head, but he managed to decide against it. He'd have to find some other way to get back at her and help Marinette in the process.

But where was Marinette?

It was a couple of minutes later into the class when she finally appeared, battling to manoeuvre her bulky crutches through the door. Her face was pale and drawn from pain and she was out of breath.

"S-sorry I'm late, Madame." She panted, struggling to wipe a strand of her hair out of her face. Adrien noted it wasn't in its usual ponytails, and despite everything, managed to notice how cute it looked.

Not the time, Agreste! He scolded himself inwardly as Marinette hopped further into the room, pink blush gracing her pallid cheeks as she saw everyone looking at her.

"I, uh, had a little trouble getting up the stairs to the classroom." She explained, and Adrien felt a stone of guilt drop into his stomach. Of course it would have been difficult for her to make her way up to the classroom. He couldn't believe he hadn't stayed to help her- and with a quick glance at Nino and Alya's embarrassed faces, he could tell it had slipped their minds too.

Mari's bulky cast and awkward crutches had clearly not been manufactured with a quick getaway in mind, not even factoring in how much pain it must have caused her to make her way up on her own. As Marinette hobbled sheepishly and silently past him, he watched, and suddenly saw a smirk from across the aisle as Marinette let out a hiss of pain. Adrien frowned again.

Chloe had only arrived a couple of minutes before Mari- which meant she'd probably passed her as she'd struggled towards the classroom. And she hadn't helped her! She'd let the girl (who'd only been injured in the first place because of her) climb the precarious stairs on her own. Adrien had never hated her more.

Before he knew what he was doing, he leaned over to Marinette and touched her arm. She looked at him in surprise, stilling in place.

"Marinette," Ladybug, he added mentally. "Why don't you take Nino's seat? That way you don't have to go up the stairs to your seat, and you can get to the door easier at the end of class."

Marinette didn't say anything, her gaze frozen on where his hand rested on her arm. Adrien looked pointedly at Nino, who almost tripped over himself as he scrambled to get up in his willingness to do anything to help.

"Yeah, cool, that's cool, I'll move. Uh, you sit here Mari, I'll move okay? Yeah, you sit by Adrien… okay."

"That's a very nice idea, Adrien." Announced the teacher, gesturing for Marinette to sit next to the blond. Mari turned and hopped round the desk, then slid along the bench nervously. The teacher gave him an approving nod, then turned back to the lesson.

Adrien wasn't oblivious to the looks that were being shot his way by an incensed Chloe, but he didn't care about them. As far as he was concerned, Chloe could go… do something very rude to herself. No way was he going to sit by any longer and let this blackmail continue- especially now it had resulted in the girl(s) he loved getting injured.

He was still struggling to compute the fact that Ladybug and Marinette were one and the same. Was it cruel of fate, or just an amazing coincidence?

Mari didn't want anyone to know, that much was extraordinarily obvious. He didn't wonder why, but simply pondered how he could show his support. He couldn't just be another reluctant bystander in the little power play, not now he knew how close he really was to the situation.

Various scenarios and possibilities ran through his head. He felt drained from his near-breakdown after his realisation earlier and the complex mathematics the teacher was explaining just wasn't computing. He was about ready to bang his head against the desk in frustration at the world and everything in it, when a whisper came from the seat to his left.

"Thank you."

He nearly didn't hear it, so caught up in his thoughts about the girl next to him that he wasn't actually paying any attention to her when she spoke. There were buzzes of conversation from the class around them who seemed to be doing some sums from off the blackboard, so the murmur was nearly drowned out.

But he turned slightly to look at Mari, whose eyes were firmly trained on her own work book. She didn't want Chloe to notice the conversation, he assumed. So he turned back to face the front and asked the next question as quietly as he could.

"For what?"

Mari shrugged slightly.

"E-everything, I guess."

He turned to look at her again. The loose curtain of hair framed her face as she stared downwards. A gentle frown creased her still scarily-ashen forehead. Adrien wasn't sure he'd ever get used to seeing her so ill and lifeless. But he listened nonetheless.

"What do you mean?" He asked gently.

"Well, letting me sit here for a start. Stairs are kinda… hard right now. I'm not the most graceful at the best of times and considering it hurts every time I move… yeah, stairs are a bad idea."

Another flash of guilt rocked through Adrien as he remembered how she'd been left to deal with the stairs up to the classroom alone.

"And for you being so supportive over the last couple of months. Same goes for Alya and Nino, I guess. But I did notice you guys helping me, even in those little ways you thought Chloe wouldn't notice it. I- I really appreciate it, and I appreciate the way you guys haven't been… prying and stuff. It's… yeah. So thank you."

"Of course." He replied softly. "Anytime." He thought she was finished and turned back to face the front when she said the last part.

"And… thank you, especially, for… not h- hating me."

His mouth popped open slightly and he turned to stare at her.

"W- what? Why would I hate you? I could never hate you, Marinette. How could you think I might?"

Surprised by the intensity in his voice, Mari looked up at him and he realised this was the most he'd heard her speak since that first morning with Chloe and the rubbish bin.

"Well… all that, that stuff I said to you. Those horrible things, I… there was that day where I put Chloe's stuff in the bin for her, and I…" she swallowed nervously, "I called you a… spoiled little rich boy. Then I ignored you all f- for a month and a half and y- you were all still so k- kind! Then the other day outs- outside Mr Damocles' office you were so c- concerned and I just blew you off. I- I… I was scared you were going to h- hate me. I deserved it. I was so horrid and n- never gave anything b- back to you guys because I was scared of wh- what Chloe might do if sh-" Suddenly Marinette broke off with a squeak, her eyes wide with panic.

Adrien knew she was worried she'd revealed something she shouldn't have, regarding her status with Chloe. She didn't know that they'd basically had the situation pegged as blackmail from day one, much less that Adrien had actually figured out her secret that very morning.

"I, I mean, um… I couldn't say… y- you guys were, uhh-" Marinette spluttered, attempting to cover herself.

Adrien discreetly put one of his hands on her fluttering ones. She froze and stared up at him, big blue eyes filled with unreadable emotions.

"Marinette, please." His voice was low and quiet but passionate. "We've had it figured since day one that Chloe was holding something over you. We don't begrudge you your secret, not me, nor Alya and nor Nino. We certainly don't hate you for it."

She stared down at their entwined hands, biting her lip.

"But all those things I said… to you and Alya…" she whispered.

"Forgotten." Adrien told her firmly. "We knew you didn't mean them the second you said them. And we're more than happy to keep supporting you from the side lines, if that's where you want us to stay. We'd love for you to confide in us, of course, but we respect your privacy and accept that some secrets need to stay hidden. We're here for you Marinette. I'm… I'm here. As long as you need me, I'm here." He repeated the words he'd said to her not so long ago as Chat, hoping to console her and (just maybe) sent her some sort of hint?

The second intention of his words went unnoticed, but she did seem comforted. She look up at him, eyes brimming with tears. A half-smile lifted the corners of his mouth, hoping to elicit one from her.

"Thank you." She whispered again. They held the gaze for another few moments, until the bell rang for the end of the lesson.

Marinette gave a start, and drew her hands away. She blinked like she was coming out of a trance, then rushed to pack her things away. Adrien turned to do the same as the students thundered past him, down towards the door. He turned to wave a little goodbye wave to Mari when a yellow blur marched past him to halt in front of the bluenette.

"Excuse me, Marinette." Sneered Chloe, her voice sickly-sweet but everything else about her screamed dangerous! Adrien tensed. She folded her arms and glared at Marinette who appeared to have frozen in fear.

"Y-yes, Chloe?" She squeaked, tremors rocking her weak frame.

"Might I have a word?"


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

Part 13 of 38

<< Previous     Home     Next >>