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I Am Ladybug

Chapter Text

Mr. Damocles had simply sent the young girl out of his office after his one hour long lecture. His face was filled with some degree of regret as he watched the teenage girl's retreating form. With a heavy heart, Marinette slowly took her belongings from her desk after everyone had left. Wrongly accused. Embarrassed by the liar’s fake accident. Almost akumatized. Her friends’ disbelieving looks. The poor other Ladybug that was supposed to be alive. Small tears had spilled onto her pale cheeks, which had caused her to quickly wipe them away with her sleeves.

 

"Tikki, this really sucks, doesn't it?" She opened her purse. 

 

"Oh Marinette, this isn't your fault at all. " The little red kwami held her pinky tightly. 

 

"I know it's not but I mean it partially really is, since I fell for it ugh-"

 

Tikki quickly disappeared into her purse as soon as they heard the classroom door open. Tired sad bluebell eyes met with shocked emerald green ones.

 

"M-Marinette? Are you okay? The thing earlier-" His eyes widened at the sound of hard wood when she abruptly brought down her fist on the desk next to her.

 

“I'll be on my way." She grabbed her backpack and like a flash of lightning, she shoved her way past Adrien without even looking back. 

 

She was already feeling a bit low and sorta humiliated after experiencing an indirect rejection from the museum trip and she's just been trying her best to stay positive. But now, to top it all off, she learned that the Agreste name was somehow linked with Lila in getting her kicked out. 

 

"Wait! I’m sure there’s something we can do! We could-" He exited the room to find her but he was a second too late, she was already gone. Adrien noticed that it had started to rain.

Chapter Text

"Boy, help me move this chest. Where it currently is seems to be a wee bit- organized ." Anarka eyed the piece of furniture warily. 

 

Luka had made the chest slanted which in turn got him a nod of approval. "I'll be in my room to practice." By habit, he nimbly footed his way amidst the clutter in the hall his mother had left. Again. 

 

He picked up his electric guitar and held up a slightly weathered out music sheet. As he got lost in his music, a warm feeling filled his chest. His bright loving smile didn't go unnoticed by his younger smirking sister as she leaned by his doorway. 

 

"Come on you have to tell me who it is." She gave him a knowing grin. 

 

Juleka received a cheeky grin from her older brother as an answer and she simply stuck her tongue out in annoyance. "Fine. Though, you better let me meet her when you guys become a thing."

 

'She's in love with someone else.' He reminded himself. 

 

"I don't know if anything will happen between us but she really is amazing." The older sibling sighed.

 

His little sister gave a small comforting pat on his shoulder. "Well, whoever she is, the music you've made about her… makes it clear to me how much she really means to you. You can count on me to support you."

 

He closed his eyes while reflexively playing the melody that's been repeatedly stuck in his head- and heart. Juleka may have had an idea on who he was thinking about, but she chose to let him be and just feel his own emotions. Luka kept on peacefully strumming his electric guitar with a soft lovesick melody while the pitter-patter of raindrops had begun.

Chapter Text

Soaked from the rain, Marinette made a beeline for her room in order to avoid any attention from her parents, who were already quite busy managing the bakery after cutting off some of their store hours due to the devastating incident from earlier in the day.

 

She immediately shut the hatch behind her and let Tikki out from her purse. 

 

“Marinette, you need to get yourself dry or else you might catch a cold or a fever!” Tikki’s small shaky voice was filled with concern.

 

Water was still visibly dripping off of the teen yet she had ignored her own kwami’s advice. In one swift movement, petite yet trembling hands tore down the posters of the model and friend she’s not so sure she can trust right now.

 

‘I wonder what will happen to our charges in this generation?’ Tikki winced at her holder’s heartbreaking actions.

 

“Are you sure about this?” She peered over her Marinette’s shoulder. 

 

“I’m Ladybug. I can't let another silly akuma happen again because of this.” She paused, jotting down something really quick into her diary.

 

“Afterall, duty over feelings.” Marinette’s pained expression paired with her contradictory stern voice left the red spotted kwami even more worried than before. Tikki silently drifted off and watched her holder from afar as she nibbled on a biscuit.

 

Still damp from the rain, the young designer still proceeded to bury herself in sketches, printouts, and such to fill in the empty space on her cork board. The top portion was lined with her friends’ group photos and her family. Penciled sketches to colored designs filled the center and she had used spare fabric cloths to pattern the lower area of the board's space.

 

Marinette smiled warmly yet wistfully back at her handiwork. “This is how it should be.” She whispered to herself.

 

She removed her pigtails and returned to her simple old yet comfortable bun hairstyle. Even if was just for a while, her worries about Hawkmoth, Lila, and her aching heart would temporarily wash away while she would take a nice long soak in the bath with some floral-scented candles.

 

It continued to rain on and off until the next day.

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Madame Bustier looked like she had seen better days. While her physical appearance seemed to be in its normal tidy state, their teacher was missing her most usual feature: smiling. And as an added oddity, her eyes looked a bit tired and… concerned. As if she had realized that maybe she had made a mistake. 

 

"Good morning everyone. I apologize if I may seem out of sorts today but let's get class started." She presented a smile that didn't quite reach her usually bright eyes. 

 

Their teacher went through the class list as per their daily routine. All names were present and mentioned, except for Dupain-Cheng

 

Alya, as quick as a fox, raises her hand the moment she finishes the roster. "Why didn't you call Marinette? Is she really expelled? Mr. Damocles can’t possibly do something so rash. She’s one of this school’s best students!" She rambled on. 

 

'Of course she would ask about her.' She made another sympathetic smile. A few of the other students were sharing the same concerned glances from yesterday across the room. Adrien, in particular, was strangely focused on his notebook. 

 

"As of today, Marinette will no longer be attending this school. I won’t have to elaborate as to why she had left, the events from the previous day are up to your own speculations." 

 

Caline Bustier added with a hint of sadness. "I'll miss her too." 

 

"She didn't move away, did she?" Rose piped in with small tears forming in her eyes. Juleka and Rose pulled each other into a tight comforting hug. 

 

"That can't be…." Alya frowned as she slumped against her seat. 

 

While the class was in a bit of shock and  disarray, Lila comes in through the doorway with a sullen expression. 

 

"If you're wondering why she's gone, she's only being punished for her misdeeds." The Italian girl proceeds to burst into crocodile tears.

 

Adrien breaks from his trance and glares back at her. 'I can’t believe the principal actually went through with it.” He notices how the room goes quiet and still.

 

"You're lying. She would never- ever do such things! Even Chloe knows that!" Alya spoke out as Principal Damocles stepped in.

 

"Enough. Miss Rossi, any more information about Marinette Dupain-Cheng's leave should be left alone. Proceed with the class, Madame Bustier." Lila suddenly pales and keeps her mouth shut. 

 

She settles back into her seat next to Adrien. "Thanks for the help, friend ." She inconspicuously whispered into his ear and he stares back at her with a look of confusion.

 

'I'll be on my way.' Marinette's cold hurt voice replays in his mind. 

 

"Maybe you could help me get Marinette back? After all, we’re friends now aren’t we?" He hisses back defensively. She simply shrugs with a look of innocence plastered on her face. Alya's hardened stare is suddenly focused on the two in front of her.

 

The clouds begin to darken once more.

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"Honey, will you be alright?" The mother held her daughter's hands firmly. 

 

"I'm okay. Really. Homeschooling will let me be able to help you guys out here at home in the bakery. Just like you guys wanted." She smiles reassuringly. 

 

A small knock came from the door before they could continue the conversation any further. Marinette had hugged her mom to help give her some form of peace. 

 

"Go on, I'll finish my study session and help out later." She urged her mom to go back.

 

"Alright, dear. Have fun with your tutorial session." Sabine winks mischievously. 

 

Her mother opens the door and in comes a tall older boy with teal tipped edges on his hair with a black bag slung over his shoulder. 

 

"Thanks for inviting me over. Glad to be of service." Luka does a small bow then warmly smiles at both mother and daughter. 

 

"I'll leave you guys to it then.” Her mother had held in a spirited giggle right before heading back down to the bakery.

 

“H-hey.” She smiled at him sheepishly feeling her heart race and knowing full well how her face must be burning by now. 

 

'Will she be able to concentrate at all?' She wondered. 

 

Luka settled his bag on the couch and patted the cushioned space next to him. "C'mon. Let's begin, Ma-Marinette. I won't ask right now about what happened but I hope you'll have me."

 

Marinette still seemed to be in a state of shock but nonetheless, she moved closer.

 

He reaches out and playfully pokes the bun on her head out of curiosity. "I like your new updo, by the way." A warmth blush ran across his cheeks. 

 

"Nah. It's nothing new. This was actually my previous get-up." She embarrassingly scratches the back of her head at his flattery. 

 

As she settled down next Luka, a small spark of joy and peace filled her heart. The two teens looked at each other at the same time before returning back to the task at hand with flustered happy expressions. 

 

She felt a small ringing in her pocket but had decided to leave it be for now.  The rumble of thunder came with the start of drizzling rain and she had left her buzzing phone on top of a shelf.