Continuing Tales


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

Part 28 of 38

<< Previous     Home     Next >>
Untitled Document

Adrien had never noticed before just how small Marinette was. It was the first thing that registered as soon as he walked into the ward, but he also noted how cold it was. Maybe it was just him, but a chill definitely went up his spine. He wasn't sure it couldn't just be attributed to seeing the love of his life in this way, though.

She lay in the bed in the centre of the ward, a couple of wires looping out from under the blanket and trailing into various equipment placed around her. The thin white sheet covered the majority of her body, but even so she looked tiny. there was an eggshell-white hospital gown over her, making her face look even paler, and her tiny hands lay atop the blanket, an IV sticking out of the back of one. Her raven hair was loose and fanned out on the pillows under her hair, her face peaceful but as white as the sheets she lay on. She was very still, the movements of her chest barely noticeable. The bed seemed huge around her, like she'd shrunk, the snowy expanse threatening to swallow her in it's comparative vastness. Adrien felt his breath catch in his throat, the stillness of her body diminishing her presence. He swallowed, trying to get rid of the prickling feeling in his eyes. He didn't want to cry again, but it looked like he wasn't going to have much of a choice.

"Oh, Marinette," he choked out as he, Nino and Alya stumbled further into the room, the door closing with a soft whump behind them. Three more orange, plastic chairs were arranged around her bedside, so Alya and Nino took the adjacent ones and Adrien took the lone one on her right-hand side.

"Oh my god." Alya whispered, gazing at Marinette's unconscious face with tears pooling in her eyes. Adrien's throat tightened as he tried to keep the sobs at bay, but Nino's sniffing nearly sent him over the edge.

Rubbing at his dampening eyes harshly with a forefinger and thumb, he twisted his mouth into a grimace. His lower lip trembled. This was worse than he could have imagined.

Knowing that she wouldn't open her eyes and he wouldn't be able to lose himself in their luminous, cerulean depths made his heart break. Knowing that her waxen face was only so calm because she was unconscious and unable to feel pain made him want to scream. Knowing that he was the one who'd been careless and reckless enough to put her in this position made him feel like he was dying.

The air was cold on Adrien's bare arms as he leant forward to take a closer look at her face. Alya and Nino were quiet, either caught up in their own private grief, or recognising that he needed silence.

Breathing heavily in an attempt to slow his heartrate and rapidly gathering tears, he roved his eyes over her pale, still lips and shallowly rising chest. Her eyes were closed, but the subtly lilac lids fluttered, and he briefly wondered if she was dreaming. If so, they were unlikely to be pleasant dreams. The light smattering of freckles across her nose seemed to stand out more than usual, stark against the whiteness of her face. Adrien reached out a slightly trembling finger to stroke a stray strand of ebony hair from her forehead, noticing for the first time that tears were rolling down his face.

"She's so tiny," Alya sobbed suddenly and Adrien jumped.

"I know," he whispered back, his face scrunching up against the encroaching whimpers. "She doesn't look like a superhero. She looks like a girl."

"She is a girl." Nino muttered, wiping his sleeve over his face and even from across the bed, Adrien could see that it came away damp. "Just a teenaged girl. It- it's not fair, she doesn't- doesn't deserve this."

"I know." Adrien repeated miserably, and for the first time, felt the kwamis stirring in his pockets. He opened his jacket to let Tikki and Plagg fly out, the red kwami letting a little cry escape her mouth as she spotted the figure in the bed.

Zooming over immediately, Tikki pressed a tiny hand to the girl's forehead and closed her eyes. She was still for a moment.

"What's she doing?" Adrien didn't know why Alya was whispering, but he replied in just as quiet a tone.

"I think she's reading her emotions. Our kwamis are attuned to us, they can sort of understand our thoughts and stuff…" Adrien trailed off as Tikki raised her head, her face full of relief. She floated down to sit on the pillow by Marinette's head, and started to play with little strands of the girl's hair.

"Uh, Tikki? I- is it good news?" Adrien's voice was full of uncertainty and wariness, not sure what to make of the kwami's reaction. Tikki shrugged.

"Mostly. She's in a lot of pain, and her head's not too happy but she's working hard to come back. She'll be here soon, Chat."

A wave of warmth washed over the teenagers at the faerie's words, and they looked at Marinette expectantly, as if anticipating her opening her eyes right that second.

"Guess we'll have to wait a little longer," mumbled Alya after a moment. Adrien sighed. He didn't like waiting, and the room was making him uneasy. Gently, he reached forwards to take one of Marinette's hands in his and he marvelled at both how cold and how small it was. But it fit perfectly in his.

The three settled back in their chairs, Plagg flying down to sit with Tikki on the bed. For a while, there was a silence, the three friends and two kwamis content to be near their absent companion.

After a few minutes, Adrien spoke, and the disgruntled tone in his voice was enough to make the other four look at him.

"I was right," he announced, his nose wrinkled as he held Mari's hand to his face. "She doesn't smell anything like Marinette." There was a shocked quiet for a moment, before Nino and Plagg burst out into hushed sniggers while Alya and Tikki simply raised their eyebrows amusedly. Adrien looked confused. "What?"

Alya scoffed at him.

"Come off it, you really know what she usually smells like?"

"Oh, don't get him started." Plagg rolled his eyes and Adrien sent him a glare.

"Yeah," the blond said defiantly, turning to the two who were seated across the bed from him. "Usually, she smells like vanilla, sugar and either strawberry or cherry, depending on which shampoo she used most recently. If it's a Saturday or Tuesday, she smells like bread, because those are the days where her parents prepare the loaves for the bakery." There was another shocked silence, during which Adrien looked back at Mari's sleeping face with sadness crawling across his own. "But now she doesn't smell like any of those things." He said quietly, effectively bringing the mood down. "She smells like hospital and chemicals and smoke. She doesn't smell like Marinette."

"Well, she is Marinette." Alya told him softly.

Adrien nodded, fighting the pressure behind his eyes that threatened to push tears out again.

"I know. It- it's just hard. Knowing she might never smell like Marinette again. Knowing she might never call me 'k- kitty' again. And… knowing she still m- might never leave this hospital room."

Adrien bowed his head, both of his hands now clutching at Marinette's like it was a lifeline, like he could tie her to him and the world. There was a lump in his throat that he couldn't seem to swallow, and he could feel his friends' gazes on the back of his head. He didn't care.

Marinette had to live, she had to. He couldn't let her die, but knowing she might was killing him. Adrien couldn't bear the fact that he hadn't talked to her in nearly twenty-four hours, and he couldn't bear the fact that he might never talk to her again. He especially couldn't bear the fact that it was all his fault.

"She will." Said a strong voice, Tikki's insistence making him look up but not let go of Mari's hand. "She will do all of those things- and more, Chat Noir. She's so strong, and she loves you all so, so much that there's no way she's going to let herself leave you. It's like I said- you just have to believe in her."

A tear rolled down Adrien's face as he gazed at the kwami, hardly daring to let hope bubble in his chest- but so, so wanting to. He nodded, slowly at first, but then with more fervour as he squared his shoulders.

"I do. I do believe in her. All of Paris does, I'm not going to be the exception."

He looked across the bed to where Alya and Nino were sitting with tears in their own eyes, and realised how selfish he was being. He wasn't the only one mourning Mari, but he was the only one being so weak about it. They'd spent far too much time comforting him, and he had to be stronger. Stronger like Marinette.

"I believe in her." He repeated softly, and Alya smiled gently.

"Me too."

"Me three." Added Nino. "She'll wake up, of course she will."

There was another hush as a united hush spread between them, the swelling optimism warming the coldness of the room. The tears in Adrien's eyes didn't go away, but they didn't fall, as for the first time, he really believed that she was going to live, that she wasn't going to allow herself to leave him.

"Before she does wake up, though," Nino chimed in after a moment, "can we draw a moustache on her face?"


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

Part 28 of 38

<< Previous     Home     Next >>