Hello, lovely readers!
This is my piece for the ML Secret Santa 2019 exchange ( @mlsecretsanta ).
@miraculousnisses, this for you. I heard that you liked Marichat and Adrienette, so here is Part 1 of a fluff-filled fic with both! I hope you enjoy it!
Be on the look-out for Part 2. It will be posted later this week!
“So, bakery girl, huh?” Plagg poked his holder on the arm.
Adrien glared at his Kwami. “Not now, Plagg.”
“Oh, yes, now. Kid, we really need to talk about this.”
“No, we don’t. Why are you bringing this up right now anyway?”
Plagg looked at him with sadness behind his eyes. “You really don’t know?”
“No,” Adrien said, shaking his head.
“Let’s just say that for someone who’s supposed to be trying to start a relationship with Kagami, you looked like one smitten kitten with Marinette today.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“Even though you’ve never said it out loud, I think we both know that you have very strong feelings for Marinette."
Adrien turned away. “Stop it. I’m not in love with Marinette.”
Plagg deadpanned. “You’re kidding, right?”
“No, I’m not. Marinette is just a…”
“Don’t you dare say ‘friend’. I saw the way you were looking at her when you two went to the park with Alya and Nino. That’s not the first time I’ve caught you looking at her like that. You didn’t even look at sword girl like that when you took her to that fancy restaurant last week.”
“Really?” Adrien ran his fingers through his hair. “Are you sure? Because I felt like the two of us had a connection.”
Plagg groaned. “Felt or wanted to feel.”
“Kid, this isn’t my first time watching two teenagers drool over each other. You look at Kagami with fondness. I can tell that you care about her, but I’m really not feeling the love. Now, Marinette...that’s a whole other look. I’ve seen pictures of you as Chat Noir, and the only other girl you looked at like that was your spotted partner.”
“I don’t want to think about Ladybug right now.”
“Is that because you’re thinking about Marinette?”
Adrien took a deep breath before continuing. “Look, I can’t be in love with Marinette. She is in love with Luka.”
The Kwami crossed his arms. “Are you sure about that?”
“You didn’t sound too sure just then.”
“They’re together all the time.”
“That doesn’t mean that they’re dating.”
“I guess not.”
“So, go tell the girl how you feel.”
Adrien walked over to his bed and took a seat. “I can’t.”
“That’s not true, and we both know it.” Plagg zipped over to Adrien and landed on his lap. “You were able to tell Ladybug how you felt.”
“That was different. Marinette is different. She’s…”
“Real. There are no masks to get in the way of you two getting to know each other. Marinette is a girl who you see almost every day, and she’s your friend.”
“Yeah, I...Plagg, no! I can’t think about this right now.”
“And why not?”
“I just can’t.”
Plagg met his gaze. “I swear on all the cheese in the world, if you can tell me with one hundred percent certainty that you are not in love with Marinette, I will stop.”
“I can’t do that either,” Adrien said, shaking his head.
“Let me get this straight. Right now, you’re saying that you can’t tell Marinette that you’re in love with her.
"And at the same time, you can’t tell me that you’re not in love with Marinette.”
“That doesn’t make any sense.”
“It does to me.”
“Does it really?”
The tiny being sighed. “I’m tired of seeing you look sad all the time. I was hoping things would work out with Kagami, but I knew they wouldn’t. She isn’t right for you. It’s like trying to fit a brass key into a silver lock. You two aren’t made for each other. I think it’s time for you to go after something that will make you happy.”
“Happy?” Adrien stared blankly across the room.
“Yes, happy. I think Marinette could make you happy. Last Christmas, you ran out of this room and almost Cataclysmed a tree. I don’t want that for you again this year. Or...even worse...I don’t want to see you get Akumatized. That would be catastrophic. This time of year seems to make you feel sad, and being in a relationship with someone who you really love could change everything for you.”
“I don’t know, Plagg.”
“Trust me, kid. A miserable Chat Noir is not nearly as effective as a happy Chat Noir, and you’ve been unhappy for a while. You need this. Paris needs this. We all need this.”
Adrien drooped. “But I can’t just go up to her and tell her that I like her. We’re friends, and she’s never shown any interest in being anything more.”
Plagg cackled. “Please tell me you’re joking? That’s a joke, right? I mean, I know you said that when you thought she was in love with Luka, but I thought you were just saying that to make yourself feel better.”
“I’m not following you.”
“That girl has been head over heels for you two met...well, once she stopped being mad at you.”
“That’s not possible. She told me that she only likes me as a friend.”
“And you believed her?”
“Yes? Was I not supposed to?”
Plagg shook his head. “Wow. Your love for Ladybug really blinded you from the truth, didn’t it? I think it’s time that you started paying closer attention. What you see might just surprise you.”
Adrien’s mind began to wander. “Do I really like Marinette? She’s always been just a...no. Plagg’s right. Marinette is special, but is that love? And if it is, could she really be in love with…”
His thoughts came to a screeching halt as an alarm pierced through the silence. “Ugh. I don’t have time for this right now. I have a solo patrol tonight, and Ladybug will be really ticked off if I miss it.”
The Kawmi shrugged. “I guess I’m ready whenever you are.”
“Plagg, CLAWS OUT!”
Marinette sat quietly at her desk and did her best to focus on the steady pattern she was supposed to be creating with her knitting needles. It was a repetitive activity, but it helped to take her mind off of the creeping sadness that threatened to bubble to the surface if she let her thoughts wander for too long. Her hands moved rhythmically as she tried to ignore the tears brimming in the corners of her eyes. As her vision blurred, her frustration grew.
Upon reaching the end of a row, she did her best to blink away the tears before inspecting her work. Marinette held the dark blue scarf up to the light only to find that she had skipped several stitches. Wetness fell from her eyes and warmed her cheeks as she pulled apart her work.
In an annoyed huff, she threw the scarf, skein, and needles to the ground. Marinette buried her head in her hands and sobbed.
“I can’t do this, Tikki!” she cried.
Within seconds, she felt the gentle pressure of her Kwami landing on her shoulder. “Oh, Marinette. You’ve made plenty of scarves before. It’s okay to make a mistake every once in a while. See! You went back and fixed it. Now you can make it even better than it was before.”
“I wasn’t talking about the scarf.”
“I know. I was just trying to take your mind off of everything.”
Marinette lifted her head and offered the tiny red being the biggest smile she could muster. “Thanks, Tikki. I appreciate it, but it’s just been so hard since...and the Miracle Box...and now the scarf...I can’t. I thought I did the right thing by giving up Adrien.”
“You did what you thought was best.”
“Did I? Because it doesn’t feel that way right now?”
“Only you can answer that question.”
“Did you see the way he was looking at me today? I wanted it to be love. That’s wrong! I shouldn’t have these feelings anymore.”
“It’s okay, Marinette. You’ve had a lot of changes in your life over the past few months.”
“Why do I still feel like this? Why do I feel like my heart has been ripped out of my chest and thrown into a blender? Sure, I had a few days where I felt okay with my decision, but it’s getting harder now. Luka has been so kind and patient. I know he loves me, but I can’t even give him a chance because I can’t let go of my feelings for another boy. And now I’m making him this scarf for Christmas...I’m even using the same pattern I used for Adrien’s. I’m a failure, and this is a disaster!”
“You’re not a failure.”
“Then why do I feel like I am?”
Tikki landed on the desk and looked up. “Well, do you think you followed your heart?”
Marinette wiped the tears off her face with the back of her hand. “I just want Adrien to be happy. He was happy with Kagami.”
“And you don’t think that Adrien could be happy with you?”
“I didn’t say that. It’s just that he’s always called me his friend. He’s never seen me as anything more than that.”
“Are you sure?”
“Yes, Tikki, I’m sure.”
“You know, today’s not the first time I’ve seen Adrien look at you that way. I think he’s always had feelings for you, but I also think he doesn’t realize what those feelings mean.”
Tikki smiled. “You mean you didn’t notice?”
Marinette looked away. “No...I mean...why would I? I’ve tried to push away my feelings for him. Honestly, until recently, I was simply trying to not make a fool out of myself when I talked to him. We can see how well that worked out.”
“Even when you got nervous or stuttered, he still looked at you with love in his eyes. I saw it all the time. He never made a declaration like Luka did, but you don’t always need words to express your love for another person. Actions speak just as loudly.”
“It doesn’t matter. Adrien is dating someone.”
“Did he say that he was dating someone?”
“And you’re friends with Kagami, right? Did she say that she was dating Adrien?”
Marinette rolled her eyes. “Tikki! I just can’t! I can’t go back to having that stupid, mind-numbing crush on him.
The Kwami smiled. “You know, I think it might be different this time. Maybe you should try being honest with Adrien. Nothing extravagant...just talk to him. You two seem to have become much closer over the past few months.”
“We have, but I can’t just go up to him!”
“Because that never worked before!”
“That’s because you were overthinking it. Just look for an opening in the conversation the next time you talk to him.”
“Oh, yeah, right. Like any conversation I have with Adrien is ever going to go in that direction.”
“You never know.”
“It’d take a miracle for that to happen.”
Marinette put her head on the desk as a heavy silence fell between the two of them. Moments later, she heard a crash on the balcony, causing her to jump and scream.
“Tikki!” she whispered loudly, “HIDE!”
The red Kwami zipped out of view as Marinette grabbed a textbook off of her desk and carefully climbed the ladder to her bed. Using the book as a shield, she tentatively opened the hatch that led to her balcony.
“I don’t know who you are or how you got here, but I have...a...uh...A BOOK! And I’m not afraid to use it!” she yelled into the night.
Still covering her face with the textbook, Marinette heard a pained groan. “Ugh...I’m sorry, Marinette. I just...I wasn’t watching. I don’t even know why I’m here. I shouldn’t be here. I’ll go. I’m so sorry.”
She lowered the book and dropped it onto her bed when her eyes fell on her partner sprawled across the ground with a lawn chair lying on top of him. “Chat?”
“Yeah, that’s me.”
“Do you need help?”
Marinette walked over to the fallen hero, uprighted the lawn chair, and extended her hand. Chat took it and lifted himself off of the ground.
“Thanks,” he mumbled under his breath.
She gave him a small smile. “Anytime, but I have to ask...is there a reason why you’re here?”
Chat looked away. “Umm...it’s not important. Once again, I’m sorry I bothered you. I’ll just get going now.”
“Wait!” Marinette shouted, surprising herself.
He turned around to face her. “Yes?”
“I...uh...um...did you want to come in?”
“You want me to come inside your room?”
“Uh...yes? I could use the company right now.”
“Why do you need…” He paused before continuing to speak. “Marinette, have you been crying?”
She lowered her head. “No.”
Chat slowly approached her. When he was close enough, he extended his hand and lifted her head by gently pushing up her chin with his finger.
“Oh, Marinette,” he whispered, “Why are you sad? Who did this to you? Someone with a soul as beautiful as yours shouldn’t be crying.”
She stifled a small sob. “No one did anything. It’s all my fault...or maybe it’s no one’s fault...I don’t even know anymore.”
“Would you really feel better if I came inside? I’d do anything to see you smile right now.”
Marinette felt her cheeks grow warm. “I...uh...maybe? It’s worth a try. We’re friends...right?”
He smiled. “Yes, we’re friends, and I think I could use the company right now, too.”
Marinette reopened the hatch and beckoned for Chat to follow. In a matter of seconds, she and the leather-clad hero were standing in the middle of her room. They both seemed to be waiting for the other person to speak first.
After a minute that felt like a lifetime, she finally broke the silence. “You can sit anywhere you’d like. Just let me put away the scarf I was working on. It’s not like I’m actually going to get it done tonight anyway.”
Marinette walked over to her desk and picked up the discarded project while Chat padded over to her chaise and took a seat.
She tossed the scarf into a drawer, sat down in her desk chair, and looked up. “Would you like something to eat or drink? I can grab some pastries from the kitchen if you’d like.”
He shook his head. “No, I’m fine. Thank you for asking.”
“Okay. Just let me know if you need anything.”
“Actually, can I ask what the scarf is for? Is that why you’re upset? You seem kind of frustrated with it.”
“Well, it’s for someone who I care for very much, but let’s just say that it’s shaping up to be the most thoughtless gift I’ve ever made.”
“You’re taking time out of your day to make this person something. How can that be thoughtless?”
“This scarf isn’t exactly an original idea.”
“So? I for one can tell you from personal experience that getting a homemade scarf is a really wonderful gift.”
Marinette slumped in the chair and sighed. “Not this one.”
Chat got up, sat on the floor in front of Marinette, and took her hands in his. “Would you like to talk about it? It might make you feel better.”
“You didn’t sound too sure about that.”
Tears began to fall from her eyes as she pulled her hands away from Chat and covered her face. “I’m not sure about anything anymore! I thought I was, but I’m not! I feel even more lost than I was before!”
“Oh, no, Princess. Please don’t cry again. If you don’t want to talk about it, that’s okay. Trust me, I was feeling pretty unsure about some things today, too. It helped when I talked about it, but if you just want to sit, that’s fine. What can I do to make you feel better?” he asked, placing a comforting hand on her shoulder.
Marinette chuckled at the sound of his nickname for her. “I could use a hug.”
“Consider it done.”
“But we barely know each other.”
“That’s not true. You just said we were friends. We’ve talked before, and you even told me that you loved me once.”
She sniffled and did her best to smile. “Yeah...I’m sorry about that, by the way.”
He cocked his head to the side. “Why?”
“Because I was actually in love with someone else. I panicked...for...uh...reasons...and I messed everything up! I always mess everything up! Why couldn’t I be braver, Chat? If I was, maybe I wouldn’t be in this situation.”
Chat held open his arms. “I think it’s time for that hug. Come here.”
Marinette bit her lip. “Really?”
He nodded, and she slid onto the floor next to him. The second Chat wrapped his arms around her, she felt all the tension in her muscles disappear. Marinette could have sworn that she heard the slight rumble of a purr as she melted into his embrace.
“Chat?” she asked, snuggling against his chest.
He tightened his hold on her. “Yes?”
“Did you mean it when you said you’d listen if I talked about what was on my mind?”
“Yes, Princess. I’m all ears, and this cat’s got excellent hearing.”
She pulled away from him. “So, you wouldn’t mind if I told you a really stupid yet incredibly painful story?”
Chat reached up and tucked a loose strand of hair behind her ear. “If it’s bothering you, then it’s not stupid.”
“No, it’s stupid, or at least it makes me feel that way sometimes. I’ve never told the whole story to anyone...not even Alya. She knows most of it, but she doesn’t know everything.”
“It’s okay. Only tell me what you want to tell me.”
She sighed. “It’s about a boy.”
“Oh, of course, it is. Of course, you’re in love with someone. Just my luck.” Chat closed his eyes and threw his head back. “I knew it. I shouldn’t have listened to Plagg.”
“Sorry...never mind. Don’t worry about me. I was just thinking about something my Kwami said to me earlier. Oh, a Kwami is…”
“It’s okay! No need to explain. I know what a Kwami is. Remember, I was Multimouse.”
“That’s right! How could I forget? Please...continue.”
“I...um...okay. Well, there’s this boy who goes to my school, and I was in love with him. And it didn’t feel like the ‘butterflies in your stomach’ kind of love. No, it felt like the kind of love that I imagine the moon probably has for the sun. You know? Like...when he was around, everything was brighter, and now that he’s gone, the world feels dark and cold.”
“I see.” Marinette briefly saw Chat’s face fall before watching his eyebrows shoot up. “Wait...was? You mean you’re not in love with him anymore?”
“Maybe I am...or not...I don’t know. Actually, you know what? Yes, I am. I’m still in love with him. Ohmygod.” She felt her eyes grow wide.
“What is it?”
“I’ve never said those words out loud before. I’m still in love with him. It feels kind of good to finally admit that, but it doesn’t matter. Nothing is going to happen between the two of us anyway. It’s hopeless.”
“Is this the same boy who broke your heart before? Because if it is, then…”
“No! It’s not like that! I kept telling him that I only liked him as a friend. It’s kind of my fault that he got the wrong idea. However, I also blame the universe for all the failed attempts at trying to profess my love to him.”
“What kind of attempts did you make?”
“I tried to tell him hundreds of times. Let’s see...there was the Valentine I forgot to sign and the phone call that I messed up. I tried recruiting my friends to help me confess my love to him by using some convoluted plan involving codenames and flowers. Oh, and there was this one time when I wrote him a love letter and wound up giving him a different paper with something really embarrassing on it instead. I even made him a scarf for his birthday...just like the one I’m making now. I didn’t sign the card on that gift either.”
“I see. Is the scarf you’re making now for the same boy?”
She sighed. “No, there’s this other boy who kind of confessed his love for me. I would be lying if I said the thought of his words didn’t make my heart flutter; however, the more I try to see him as more than just a friend, the more something doesn’t feel right. Luka is wonderful, but I don’t think I’m in love with him.”
Chat’s whole face brightened. “So, it’s not Luka?”
“I just...um...when I first met him, I didn’t like him. You know Chloe? Of course, you know Chloe...she was Queen Bee. Well, I thought he was like her. They came from the same world, and they were childhood friends. Then, he gave me his umbrella when I forgot mine at home. I know it seems silly, but it was such a selfless gesture. He did it without hesitation. It’s as if doing stuff like that is just a part of who he is. Once I discovered his kindness, that was it for me. I was head over heels for him.”
Chat held up his hand. “Hold on. Did you just say that he gave you his umbrella?”
Marinette nodded. “Yes, it closed on my head after he handed it to me. We both laughed...oh, his laugh. His laugh is like listening to birds singing on a warm summer day.”
“Oh my God,” he whispered.
“Yeah, let’s just say that I’m really, really in love with him. Anyway, I bumbled around him for months. I could barely function, and I’m guessing that’s why all my attempts to confess fell flat. Still, no matter what I did, what I said, or how I messed up, he was always kind to me.”
Chat raked his fingers through his hair. “I can’t believe it.”
She threw her hands into the air. “Right? It’s crazy how amazing he is. Even though he’s rich and famous, his life is really hard. The more I got to know him, the more I began to understand that he’s this bright soul stuck in a dark cloud. He’s been through so much, yet he’s managed to stay a genuinely good person.”
“This is insane.”
“I haven’t even gotten to the best part of the story yet! Get this...a few months ago I saw him having fun with my friend Kagami, and I’m pretty sure he’s in love with her. So, I walked away and gave them the space they needed. I gave him up, Chat! I just want him to be happy. He deserves that.”
Chat looked up and met her gaze. “I...he does?”
Marinette let her expression fall. “He looks so sad sometimes, and it’s never when he’s with all of his friends. It’s when he thinks no one is looking. I’m glad he found Kagami, but I guess I just wish I could have been the person to make him happy.”
“What makes you think that you aren’t?”
“I’m not the girl he’s in love with.”
“How do you know that?”
“One time, I almost kissed him when he pretended to be a wax figure, and on the car ride home, he told me he was in love with a girl...and it obviously wasn’t me.”
Chat groaned and lowered his head. “I’m an idiot.”
Marinette paused. “What?”
“I’m sorry. My brain is going through a lot right now. What did I just say?”
“You said that you were an idiot.”
“Yeah, I mean, no...I MEAN...never mind.”
She reached up and felt his forehead. “Chat, are you okay? You feel a kind of warm, and you’re looking a little flushed.”
He put his hands on his cheeks. “I am? Huh? Can’t tell with the suit and all...uh...hey, so I have a question. You said that you made this boy a scarf? D-did the scarf ever get to him?”
“Yeah, it did, but he thinks that it’s from his dad.”
“Oh my...why...and...um...why didn’t you tell him it was from you?”
“You should have seen the smile on his face when he wore it to school. I’d never seen him look that way before. Like I said, I just want him to be happy.”
Marinette heard Chat’s breath hitch. “Princess, that’s amazing. You’re amazing. I...he...no one deserves you. My God...I can’t even believe this.”
“You are acting so weird right now.” She was starting to become very concerned about her partner’s wellbeing. “The way you’re looking at me right now kind of reminds me of how Adrien was looking at me earlier today. That’s what got me upset.”
“I...um...are you m-mad at...ohmygod you said ‘Adrien’.”
“Yeah, I did. Are you sure you’re okay?”
Chat’s voice sounded strained. “Yes, I’m listening. Please don’t stop. I...umm...you...are mad at him?”
Marinette shook her head vigorously. “No, I’m not mad at him. Quite the opposite. I’m actually mad at myself for letting all my feelings for him come back. Letting him go was so painful the first time, and I know I’m setting myself up for more heartbreak.”
“Holy...jeez...YOUR FEELINGS CAME BACK? Oh, God...I feel lightheaded. Do you feel lightheaded? It’s hot in here right?” he asked, fanning himself with his hands.
“Well, I don’t think they ever left. Chat, I don’t think you’re okay.”
“NO! I’m going to be FINE. There’s just a lot on my mind...ohmygod...how is this happening right now?”
Worry flooded Marinette’s brain as she watched Chat get off of the floor and pace around the room. He spent the next minute muttering to himself and gesticulating wildly. Marinette got up and tentatively walked over to him.
“Hey, Chat?” she asked gently, “How about you come and sit down on the chaise. I’ll go down to the kitchen and get you a glass of water.”
“No,” he said forcefully, “Jeez...sorry...I mean, no. I think I need to go home. I have to go home and...yeah. That.”
“I don’t think it’s safe for you to run across rooftops right now.”
“Actually, that may help me sort out all of this in my head.”
“What? Chat, no! Sit down, and let me take care of you!”
“Take care of me? How are you this wonderful?”
“I don’t want you to get hurt!”
He took her hands. “Princess, I hate to do this to you right now, but I have to go. You’ve given me a lot to think about. May you have dreams as wonderful as you are, and may your tomorrow hold nothing but happiness.”
Marinette could feel her heart pounding in her chest. “I...what?”
Chat lifted her hands and placed a light kiss on each one. He then ran up her ladder, opened the hatch and disappeared into the night.
“Tikki!” Marinette called, “Do you know what just happened?”
“Umm...you know what? How about we all get ready for bed?” the red Kwami suggested with a smile.
“You’re changing the subject.”
“Can you at least tell me if he’s going to be okay? I am the Guardian, after all.”
“Chat Noir will be fine, but he’s going to have a long night.”
Marinette collapsed on her chaise. “It’s days like this where I wish I knew who he was. Then, I’d be able to check up on him.”
Tikki zipped over and sat on her lap. “You know that the Guardian usually knows all the Miraculous holders’ identities, right? It’s for that exact reason.”
“I don’t know. With Hawkmoth still around…”
“The choice is up to you now. However, after tonight, I have a strange feeling that this won’t be a problem for much longer.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” Marinette asked, crossing her arms.
“Uhhh...goodnight!” Tikki zipped away.
“The other Kwamis would never treat me this way!”
“Sorry can’t hear you! I’m asleep.”
Marinette chuckled and shook her head. “Maybe Ladybug will be able to get some answers from him tomorrow.”
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