Continuing Tales


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

Part 3 of 38

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Marinette had never dreaded school more in her life. The previous night's events had taken their toll on her, and her eyes were underlined by puffy, dark bruises, illustrating the lack of sleep she'd managed to get. Inside, her stomach was twisting and coiling in anticipation of the hell that was sure to come her way in the coming months. No Alya, no Nino, no Adrien. Double homework, extra duties as Ladybug, and she had to be Chloe's personal slave? How could she manage it all, and stay sane!

But she had to manage it. For Chat's sake.

She knew if her identity was revealed that she'd most likely never see her kitty again. He'd have to get used to a new Ladybug, and would be forced to realise what a sham she'd been as his partner. She was only strong while in her suit, only brave under the mask. Unveil who she really was, and Paris would never trust it's superheroes again. It wouldn't put its citizens' lives in the hands of teenagers, in the hands of a baker's daughter. Everybody would know how pathetic Ladybug really was, and she didn't think Chat would take the time to visit, once he knew who she was. It would undoubtedly put his identity and safety into jeopardy too, if her secret came out. Marinette would have to go along with Chloe.

She took a deep breath, and walked down to the bakery, her purse feeling empty without her kwami. She'd told Tikki to stay home, worried that the kwami's tension and anxiety would rile her up even more and make it harder for her to subject herself to Chloe's torture.

Entering the bakery, she was greeted by her parents' loving smiles.

"Morning, darling," smiled Sabine, giving change to the customer who'd just bought a bag of powdered donuts and waving him off with a content smile.

"Morning, Mama, Papa." Marinette somehow mustered up a smile. "Is it okay if I take extra croissants with me to school? My… friend wants to try them and I told her I'd bring some."

"Of course, Marinette. And why don't you take her some of my new toffee and raspberry gateau, if you really want to show of my talents." Her father winked, packing the treats in a paper bag. Marinette grinned weakly and, taking the bag, hurried out of the door before her smile could be replaced by an expression that more fitted her mood.


"Marinette, I've finished with my piece of paper, now. Come and put it in the bin for me." Chloe ordered loftily. "And sharpen my pencils while you're at it, too. "The students were hard at work, labelling the different geographical features that could be found in a river. The teacher had had to leave momentarily to sort something out with the principal, so Chloe felt perfectly comfortable ordering the bluenette around. Marinette, hearing Chloe's order, froze. This was her first test. She'd already been kind of frosty to Alya this morning, fearing that if they started chatting that the whole thing would come out. She was bursting to tell someone, but knew she couldn't. Marinette took a deep breath and readied herself.

Alya stared as Marinette slowly got up and walked over to Chloe. She poked the back of Nino's and Adrien's head to draw their attention to what was going on, but it wasn't necessary. The entire class watched in shock as feisty, happy, bubbly Marinette picked up the crumpled piece of paper, and put it in the bin that was not 3 feet away from Chloe, not making eye contact with anybody else the entire time. She walked back to Chloe, and picked up the pencils that were laying on the desk, proceeding to file them into points, one by one. Nino and Adrien exchanged looks, mouths agape as Marinette docilely shuffled back to her seat, and sat down, staring at the nearly blank paper in front of her.

Marinette could feel everybody's eyes on her as she sat back down, and knew what they must be thinking of her. Her eyes filled with tears. She hated this. Already Chloe was exerting her power over her, and Marinette knew that these petty commands were to be the tip of the iceberg. Worse was sure to come. But what could she do? One wrong move, and Chloe would send that photo to everyone in Paris, and her life would be ruined. So, she kept her mouth shut.

Eventually, everyone went back to their own work, not missing the satisfied smirk plastered over Chloe's face. Everyone except for Alya, Nino and Adrien, that is. The two boys had turned in their seats as Marinette walked past them to sit back down, gazing at her in shock and confusion as she did the blonde girl's petty bidding. Alya felt that she'd never been more confused in her life, and her mouth hung open in shock. Marinette knew they were watching her, but again, didn't make eye contact. She took a deep breath and continued to label her river, head and eyes resolutely, determinedly down. After a while, the boys looked at Alya for an explanation, but after her blank shrug, they turned back to their sheets. Alya, however, did not.

A couple of minutes later, after Marinette had avoided all her attempts at making eye contact, Alya snapped.

"Girl, what the hell was that?" She leaned closer and hissed, knowing full well that the boys in front pricked up their ears in hope for an explanation. The rest of the class did too, and even Chloe sat up, waiting to hear what Marinette was about to say. Would she get the opportunity to reveal her enemy already, or would Marinette alienate herself from her classmates and friends with skin-saving lies? Either way, Chloe knew she would be satisfied, so she leaned back to listen.

"What was what?" Muttered Marinette innocently, still looking down at her geography. Alya grabbed the sheet from under the bluenette's hands, forcing her to look up. "Hey! Give it back, Alya!"

"You know full well what I'm talking about, Marinette." Replied Alya, holding the sheet out of Marinette's reach, so she'd have no excuse not to make eye contact.

Marinette sat back and folded her arms with a raised eyebrow.

"I'm afraid I really don't, Alya." She lied coolly. "Now give me back my worksheet."

Disgusted, Alya threw the sheet down on the desk. Adrien and Nino turned round to watch the girls argue, Adrien noticing how pale Marinette had gone, and how her folded arms made her look unbothered, but that she was also trembling from head to foot. He frowned as Alya ranted, knowing something was definitely off.

"You! That's what I'm talking about." Alya exclaimed, not bothering to be quiet anymore.

"I didn't do anything, Alya. Just leave it alone. I did a favour for Chloe, just let it go and give me my sheet back!

"Putting Chloe's rubbish in the bin for her just because she's too lazy to and she told you to do it for her? Sharpening her pencils just because she's worried that if she does it, she'll chip a nail? I'd expect that to be behaviour fitting of a sycophant like Sabrina, not of you, Mari. You call that a favour? That's... petty. That's balls, and you know it, Marinette. What's going on?" Alya cried, confused and slightly upset. She had noticed Marinette blowing her off earlier as she'd tried to strike up a conversation, but seeing the bags under her eyes, had attributed it to her friend's tiredness. But after what had just happened, Alya knew there was something else going on. "What, what, a-are you suddenly Chloe's slave now? Do you have to do all her dirty work for her? Is she forcing you to ignore your friends, too, or are you just feeling bitchy this morning?"

Only Adrien noticed Marinette flinch as Alya hit the nail on the head. Marinette clenched her jaw as she prepared to lie again.

"What, so now it's a crime to be nice to someone? Chloe did me a favour, and now I'm repaying her. Let it go." This was meant to placate Alya, but only seemed to enrage her further.

"Since when has Chloe been deserving of you being nice to her? And what favour did she do you, give you tips on the correct way to brush your hair?"

Marinette couldn't take it anymore. She was about to cry, and knew that if she started sobbing in front of Alya, the whole thing was going to be blurted out, Ladybug and all. She had to end it.

"Right, you listen, Alya." Marinette ordered, standing up. Alya mirrored her, the girls trading glares. "It's none of our business what Chloe did for me, that's between me and her. Furthermore, neither of us have exactly been nice to her in the past, Alya, so I think it's high time you realised what a nice person she actually is. I put Chloe's rubbish in the bin for her because I'm… I'm her friend, and she's mine. Plus, I can't believe you'd have the nerve to begrudge me having other friends! If I want to do something nice for someone, it's not up to you to tell me they don't deserve it. You're not the boss of me, Alya Cesaire, and maybe if you spent less time on that stupid Ladyblog, you'd have more time to spend being a good friend. A good friend like Chloe!" As Marinette finished yelling, the girls stood there for a moment, glaring at each other, the classroom silent as everyone sat on tenterhooks.

Marinette looked around at all of her classmates as they stared back at her in awe, then shook her head like she was coming out of a trance. Nobody said anything. The teacher came back in and looked surprised to see the girls standing up, and nobody paying any attention to their river diagrams.

"Alya, Marinette, sit down. I'm not even going to ask what was going on while I was out of the classroom, but I highly suggest that everybody goes back to their work. Now." She ordered sternly, and everyone scrambled to obey, Chloe turning back to the front with a very satisfied smile, one that basically everybody could see.

Alya floundered for words, and after a moment, sagged back in her chair, at a loss. Marinette didn't move, but stayed still, standing with her fists clenched by her sides and her eyes trained on the floor with disbelief at what she had just done. She'd ended the argument, for now, but at what cost? The teacher noticed her standing there.

"Marinette! Sit down and continue with your work!"

Marinette jumped and looked up.

Oh my god.

A second passed, and suddenly she grabbed her bag and pencil case, slinging the bag over her shoulder as she dashed towards the door.

She had to get out of here.

"Miss Dupain-Cheng, just where do you think you're going?" Cried the teacher, as Marinette yanked open the door, and ran out. This time, only Adrien saw Marinette's face as she passed, and was startled to see her lips pressed together, cheeks reddening as tears began to flow. Her arms were crossed over her chest as she ran past the windows of the classroom that looked onto the hallway, and as the classroom door swung shut behind her, Adrien was certain that he heard a sob.


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

Part 3 of 38

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