It was the end of the school day; all the students attending Françoise Dupont High School were just exiting class. Adrien was walking down the hall chatting casually with his best friend Nino who was walking next to him.
Adrien felt a light tap on his shoulder and quickly turned around to see who it was. He saw Marinette, looking down at her feet, and hands fidgeting with the strap of her purse. She looked very tense, her shoulders so stiff it almost looked painful. There was a heavy red blush that covered her cheeks and ears. Adrien thought nothing of her body language, she was always like this around him, except for the fact she was more red than usual.
Adrien smiled at her then opened his mouth to speak.
“Hey Marinette what’s up?”
She bit her lip and messed with her purse strap some more and said, “I, um, need to speak, t-talk to you, tell you, um uh…"
She took a deep breath and tried again.
“I need to talk to you,” her eyes flickered to Nino for a quick second, “In private."
Adrien’s eyebrows knit together in slight concern, “Uh, yeah, sure.”
Nino began to walk backward toward the exit.
“Alright man, I’ll wait for you. See you later Marinette.” With that he turned around and walked away.
“So whadya need Mari?” Adrien scratched the back of his neck, Marinette seemed more nervous than usual and it was making him worried that she had bad new or something.
Marinette shuffled her feet and took a few moments to start speak.
“W-well, um, you’re really nice, and, and s-sweet, and well, like I you. N-no! I mean, I mean! I like-.”
She paused and squeezed her eyes shut and…
“Ever since day you gave your umbrella during the rain I realized how kind you are and I- I FELL IN LOVE WITH YOU!”
It was quite, for too long. Marinette hesitantly opened she eyes and looked at Adrien.
His eyes were wide, but other than that he didn’t look too surprised. Why would he be? It explained a whole lot. Her nervousness, her constant blushing, the clumsiness that was tenfold around him.
“I’m sorry Marinette, but I can’t return your feeling. There’s someone else who I-“
She had interrupted him.
“Yeah, it’s fine. I shouldn’t have said anything in the first place. It was stupid. I’ll see you tomorrow.”
She rushed past him. Adrien shouted for her to wait but she didn’t.
He paused for a minute before going after her. He did care for her. He thought she was sweet, smart, talented and cute. When he thought of her it was nothing but good. But he couldn’t return her feelings because Ladybug. Strong, confident, determined Ladybug. He had to make sure Marinette didn’t think it was her, he had to. He didn’t want her thinking bad about herself.
Marinette was a quick runner and by the time him made it out the school she was nowhere in sight.
He quickly spotted Nino, who was leaning against the wall looking at his phone.
Adrien ran up to him, “Did you see where Marinette went?!”
“Yeah… Looked like she was heading toward the park. Wh-“
Adrien cut him off, “The Park! Thanks!” then ran off.
He got there quickly. It wasn’t very far from school and he was a quick runner. And even though it wasn’t a far run he was still slightly out of breath from how fast he was running.
He walked quickly eyes darting around looking for his friend.
Adrien saw her, under the shade of a tree back against its trunk. Her knees were pulled up, arms wrapped around and head buried in them.
He walked toward her. As he got closer he started to see her shaking and hear her crying.
Then he stopped in his tracks, wide eyed. He saw it. A dark purple butterfly flying directly toward Marinette. An akuma.
Was she really that upset? This thought made Adrien feel worse.
Marinette looked up directly at the akuma. She didn’t try to get away from it she continued to stare at it. Then she outstretched her hand reaching toward it.
He opened his mouth to warn her, to transform, something!
He stopped himself seeing Marinette gently close her hand around the akuma.
She brought it up to her lips and whispered something. Something Adrien could barely hear.
“No evil doing for you, little akuma.”
Marinette stretched out arm again and opened up her hand.
Akuma was pure white and flew up into the sky.
Marinette watched it fly and she said, “Bye, bye, little butterfly.”
Adrien stared at Marinette a little bit longer before saying loud and clear enough for her to hear.