Miraculous Team: Feathers of a Peacock - Chap. 10Chapter 10: Sentimonster Running WildPutting the last book on the shelf, Mylene smiled, looking at a job well done. Her mother had asked her to dust the room when she got home from school, and she did. She was not a big fan of cleaning, but she did what she was told, knowing that in the end, she would have a reward waiting for her in the fridge.Mylene’s mom knew she had a sweet tooth, and she tended to use that little weakness of hers, to ask her to help around the house, from time to time. She would bake or buy something good, she knew Mylene liked, and presented it to her as a reward, once the job was done. And on that day, she had the last slice of her mom’s cheesecake with her name on it. Grabbing it, she then sat on the sofa, kicked off her shoes, and placed her feet on the coffee table, making herself comfortable. Pin joined her, as she savored the delicious bounty her mother had left her.“Mmm… mom’s cheesecake is so fluffy, it practically melts in one’s mouth, Pin.” -Mylene said, as she ate another bite. –“Do you want a bite?” -she asked her. “Don’t mind if I do.” -Pin said, as Mylene gave her a spoonful of cheesecake. –“Mmm… it’s really good. Your mom makes the best cheesecake out there.” -she said, as she licked her lips. “I was really needing this, after cleaning up this living room.” -Mylene confessed, as she ate another bite. “Well, you deserve it. Not only you had to clean this living room, but earlier, you had to play basketball in P.E., and you gave it your all, in that game.” -Pin told her. –“Work hard, play hard, that’s what I always say.” -she said. “True.” -Mylene chuckled, as she grabbed the TV remote. –“Let’s see what’s on TV.” -she said, as she turned on the television. There were many things that Pin liked about Mylene. But one of the things she did not like about her, was the fact that it took her forever to choose a TV channel. Mylene liked to channel surf, hoping to find the perfect show, and it usually took her between two to three minutes. And that ticked Pin off, because she usually just watched whatever was on. “Are you going to pick a channel, or not?” -Pin asked her, after nearly 30 seconds of zapping. –“You’re jumping channels so fast, you can hardly understand what’s on each of them.” -she commented. “Maybe for you, but I can see exactly what’s on each channel.” -Mylene told her kwami, as she continued to surf through channels. “Just pick one, Mylene! At this time of the day, there’s nothing really good on TV, anyway.” -Pin sighed. “Oh, nice! Quantum Leap!” -Mylene chirped, as she stopped channel surfing. –“I love this old TV show.” -she told Pin. –“Oh, and we’re in luck. It’s the Christmas episode! It’s one of my favourites, you know? I always cry so much, on this one.”“What’s the show about?” -Pin asked her, curious. “It’s about a scientist who travels through time, and tries to put things right, where they were once wrong, with the help of his best-friend, who appears to him as hologram. It’s very good, and very funny.” -Mylene answered her. –“My dad used to watch this, when he was a kid. He usually says that it’s because of this show that he knew he wanted to be an actor, when growing up.” -she said. “Really?” -Pin asked. “Yeah. He felt that if the actor who plays the main character, was able to play a different character each week, then, he could also do it.” -Mylene said. It did not take long for the two of them to have their eyes glued to the screen, having bene transported into the fictional world they were watching. On more than one occasion, did Mylene sniffed a little, getting a little too emotional with what was happening. But the last time she did it, while they were watching the show, Pin noticed something was different about her. And it did not take long for her to put two and two together, and realize that the last tears that dropped from Mylene’s eyes were different, from the ones before. “What’s the matter, Mylene?” -Pin asked her. “Uh, what do you mean?” -Mylene said. “You sighed.” –Pin pointed out.“So what? I’m always sighing.” -Mylene replied.“Yes, but that particular sigh I heard, it was the kind of sigh you only let out, when you’re thinking of something bad.” -Pin told her, while looking her in the eyes. –“So, what’s going through your mind, for you to be sighing like that?” -she asked her. “Okay, I was… I was thinking about Jeanne Gagné.” -Mylene admitted. –“Just before lunch, I noticed that she and her friends were spying on me. Well, not really spying, because they were just there, and I walked by them, but I could tell that she was thinking on how she’s going to get back at me, from what happened in London.” -she told Pin. –“I could tell it, from her eyes.”“You’re still thinking about that?” -Pin asked her. –“I thought that by now, you would’ve forgotten about that empty promise.” -she said. “It’s not an empty promise, Pin.” -Mylene said. –“When that Jeanne swears she’ll get someone, she means it.” -she added. –“She’s not like Chloe who, when she was her old nasty self, threatened someone, swearing she would get her revenge, but by the next day, she would’ve forgotten about it and moved on to antagonize someone else. Jeanne is different. She never forgets who stands up against her, or who steps on her toes.”“It doesn’t matter, if she forgets or not. You can’t be afraid of her, Mylene!”“I’m not afraid of her, Pin. I’m just…”“Yes, you are! I can see it in your eyes, Mylene. That can’t be. And I’m not just saying that because you have the strength and the abilities of a demi-goddess.” -Pin declared. –“I’m saying it, because you are way more courageous than you think you are, and I’ll say it as many time as you need to hear it!” -she exclaimed. Mylene knew that Pin was right. There was only truth in the words she spoke. After all she'd been through, fearing a bully seemed silly. But still, there was something inside her that kept her from accepting the fact that she had nothing to fear from Jeanne. And that something was "fear." The fear of the unexpected. Because with an Akuma, she always knew what to expect. She knew that it would try to kill her and get her miraculous. With Jeanne, Mylene did not know how she would get revenge on her, or when that would happen. And the more she thought about it, the more that fear grew inside her. “But…” -Mylene said, hesitant. “But nothing! That stupid girl has got nothing on you. She’s nothing more than a bully and bullies are cowards! She’s a coward, who wants to make you feel like a crazy person and question if you’re a coward!” -Pin pointed out. –“I get it that you’re worried about her getting her revenge, but remember, you are a brave and courageous girl.” -she said. –“Even when you’re scared, you go into battle and don’t even think twice about it. If you can take on an Akuma, as well as Hawk Moth and his lieutenants, then you can take on that brat.”“It’s not about knowing I can take her, Pin. I know I have both the courage and the strength to do it, If I wanted, I could easily break her arm or her leg, if she attacked me.” -Mylene sighed. –“But if I do that, I’ll get in trouble. And I don’t want my parents to get upset with me, because I got myself in trouble, even if it was to defend myself from a bully.” -she said. –“Besides, you know I’m not a violent person. Even when I’m Forest Doe, I try my best not to show a more violent side of myself.”The little deer kwami knew this was true. Mylene was not a violent person, and she did not like when she had to use any kind of violence to anyone. She did enjoy punching Akumas and other creatures Hawk Moth threw at them and her friends, but in her mind, that was different, as she was not fighting regular people. Still, Pin knew that Mylene needed to take a stand against that girl, and she needed her to understand it. “I know that. But if that Jeanne Gagné has targeted you, you need to be ready to fight back, if she comes for you.” -Pin said. –“And you don’t necessarily need to use brute force to deal with her.” -she added. –“Let me ask you this, Mylene. What is your main power, when you’re Forest Doe?”“It’s invisibility, of course.” -Mylene told her. “Exactly. Invisibility.” -Pin said. –“You can use that invisibility to your advantage.” -she told her. –“Imagine that she comes for you. Instead of attacking her, or standing up to her, you run. She’ll think that you’re scared, and she’ll chase you. Once you manage to get out of sight, you can become invisible, to either escape her, or teach her a lesson… lke making her fall on her face, or make her fall inside a trash bin. And before you ask me if that’s not misusing your powers for personal reasons, no, it isn’t. It’s using them to make sure that you handle someone, who could become an obstacle on you fulfilling your duties as a miraculous heroine.” The idea was tempting. And the more she thought about it, the more Mylene remembered the countless episodes of series and movies where the hero or heroine acquired the power of invisibility, and then used it for their own benefit, or to correct some injustice. She wasn't one to use her powers outside of battle. But that was one situation where she didn't mind using them.“That does sound tempting.” -Mylene admitted, as she continued to imagine herself teaching Jeanne and her buddies a lesson, while invisible. –“But it doesn’t feel right to use my powers to get even with a bully, even if that bully is Jeanne Gagné.” -she sighed. “The others do it, from time to time, Mylene. And there’s nothing wrong with you teaching a few bullies a lesson, when they deserve it.” -Pin told her. –“It’ll be like what that Sam Beckett does in that show. Putting things right, where they were once wrong.” -she added.Even Mylene had to admit that was a very good analogy. To teach Jeanne and her friends a lesson, by using her powers, was something that she felt was the right thing to do, if they decided to come after her. “Okay, you convinced me.” -Mylene declared. –“I’ll use my powers to deal with her, but only, and I mean only, if she attacks me first.” -she said, as a thought went by her mind. –“Let’s hope I’m wrong about it, and she doesn’t… oh, stop it, Mylene! You know damn well, that’s she going to make you pay for what happened in London. You need be ready, for when she comes for you, like Pin said.”She would have continued to think about that, if her cell phone had not vibrated, snapping her back to reality. Pulling it form her pocket, she rolled her eyes, when seeing why it had vibrated. “Akuma attack?” -Pin said, as she too looked at the cell’s screen. “Yup, another one. I was wondering how long it would take Hawk Moth to create another one.” -Mylene sighed. –“And here I thought, I was going to get to rest and relax a little bit, before my parents got home.” -she commented, as she turned off the television. “No rest for the wicked, as they say.” -Pin said. “It seems like it. The attack it’s in the 4th arrondissement; we better get going. The faster we deal with this, the better. If I’m not back before my parents arrive, I’ll be in trouble.” -Mylene told Pin. ----------------------------And as Mylene transformed into Forest Doe, and made her way to the scene, Rose and Juleka were already chasing the Akuma that was on a rampage, as Flamingo and Corbeau Noire. Having the advantage of flying, the two heroines wasted no time in trying to catch up to the creature that was trashing everything in its way. Cars, trucks, bikes and motorcycles flew through the air. The noise they made as they hit the ground, mingled with the screams of terrified people, along with the wild roars of the creature, which ran after them. It did not matter if this was the umpteenth Akuma that showed up. People reacted the same way they reacted when the very first one appeared; they panicked. Despite its size, the creature moved with incredible speed. Signaling to her partner, Flamingo created six copies of herself and decided to go down to help those in need, while also trying to stop the creature from causing more damage. In a matter of seconds, they were able to help several people.From the air, Corbeau Noire saw the creature was heading straight to the Passerelle de Mornay, where a sizable group of people were standing on at the time. “I think I just found the perfect place to trap you.” -Corbeau Noire thought to herself. –“Just need to get rid of the people on the bridge.” -she thought. Plunging into the ground, the raven heroine landed in front of the bridge. The people in it, seeing her immediately knew something was wrong. Some quickly ran in search of a safe spot, but others remained where they were, having pulled out their cell phones to record or photograph what was going on. Seeing this, Corbeau was forced to shout at them, so they would disperse. “Everyone out of the bridge, now!!!” -Corbeau Noire ordered, shouting at the people. Hearing her, no one moved. But a second later, when they began hearing the commotion caused by the Akuma, they decided to run for their lives. Rolling her eyes, Corbeau wondered how many times that had already happened to her. “Always the same thing… they see a superhero, who warns them to get away for their own safety, they remain. They hear or see a monster, they run away. Sometimes I wonder if people actually pay attention to what we tell them to do.” -Corbeau Noire mused to herself, as she saw the Akuma getting nearer. Standing her ground, she waited for the creature to come near her. When she felt it had seen her, she began to walk backwards, expecting it to follow her. When it did, Corbeau Noire made use of her mirror to gain control of the shadows created by the bridge. Bringing them to life, she used them to restrain the Akuma, as this one tried to attack her. With its legs restrained, it tried to break free, only to fail. Believing she had it restrained, the raven heroine confronted it. “Alright ugly, what’s your name and your power?” -Corbeau Noire asked the creature. –“It’s probably an Akuma that can turn itself into this creature, or numerous creatures, like we’ve seen before.” -she thought to herself, as she stared at the creature’s feral eyes. –“Come on, what’s your name and power? You, Akumas, love the sound of your voice and to brag about how you’re going to kill us heroes.” Upon hearing the raven heroine shouting at it, the creature roared at her like a wild animal, spitting droplets the size of baseballs, which hit Corbeau Noire on the face. Feeling them hitting her, she felt both repulsed and disgusted. “Hey, say it, don’t spray it!” -Corbeau Noire shouted at it. -“Ew… not wanting to sound like Chloe, but this is utterly disgusting.” -she thought to herself, as she cleaned the slobber from her face with her left hand. –“You can roar all you want, but you’re not going anywhere.” Roaring again at Corbeau Noire, the creature tried to set itself free once more, to no avail. The shadows caught it, and the heroine had them under her control. Believing it was not going anywhere, she decided to try and talk to it again. But before she could utter a single syllable, something happened. Out of the blue, a slit appeared on the Akuma’s snout and began to spread through the rest of its body. In a matter of seconds, the Akuma split in two and one of them managed to hit Corbeau Noire with its now free front paw, knocking her down. Falling backwards, she hit her head on the concrete, and lost control of the shadows that were holding the now double Akuma. Free from their shackles of shadows the creatures lunged against Corbeau Noire, before she could react. They intended to turn her into their next meal. Scrapping their front paws against the concrete floor, they tried to bite the raven heroine. Not wanting to be their snack, she was forced to use her hand-mirror, smacking it against the snouts of both Akumas. This only made them angrier, but it also made them draw back long enough for her to get back up. Huffing and puffing, she cursed herself for underestimating the threat. “I can’t let my guard down with these things.” -Corbeau Noire told herself. –“Sorry, but I’m not going to be your afternoon snack!” -she shouted at the Akumas.She had just finished talking, when the two creatures lunged themselves at her, forcing her to retreat into the air. Even so, the creatures tried to grab it, jumping into the air, only to be attacked by Flamingo’s copies, who, along with the original Flamingo, came to lend them a hand. “They’re two now?!” -Flamingo asked Corbeau, surprised. “Y-Yeah…” -Corbeau said. –“This guy can duplicate itself, just like you do.” -she added. “Only I do it, with a bit more finesse.” -Flamingo said, pulling a smile from her girlfriend. –“My copies can hold them for a bit, but we’re going to need a plan, to deal with it.” -she said, as she looked at her copies fighting the two Akumas. –“You got anything from it? Any information would be good.”“Nope. A lot of roaring and some slobber, but not a single word.” -Corbeau Noire admitted. –“If I didn’t know any better, I would say it’s just a wild animal.” -she said. “Wild animal or not, we can’t let it run around like that.” -Flamingo said. “You’re right… so here’s the plan.” -Corbeau Noire told Flamingo. –“You take the one on the right! I’ll take the one on the left!” -she said. –“Let’s try and get them to Place de la Bastille. There, we’ll have a better chance of dealing with them, without damaging things too much.” “Alright!” -Flamingo exclaimed. –“Lead the way.” -she said. –“Let’s defeat this ugly.” Going with the raven heroine’s plan, Flamingo and Corbeau Noire each attacked a different Akuma and began to lure them towards the Place de la Bastille. This was not an easy task, especially because the Akumas looked even wilder than before, when they were just one. To prevent them from attacking the people on the street, Flamingo created four more copies of herself and ordered them to protect the civilians, while she and her previous copies engaged the Akuma. These, like the others before, fled when they saw what the two heroines were fighting. And those who did not, to get a better look at the fight, Flamingo copies quickly got them to safety. Corbeau Noire also used her powers over shadows to help them, when there were too many people.“Hey! Keep your teeth to yourself, buddy!” -Corbeau Noire exclaimed, as she round-kicked the Akuma on the snout, only for this one to try and bite her. –“I said keep your teeth to yourself, buddy! I’m not going to be your afternoon snack!” -she shouted at him, as she dodged it, by backflipping. At that time of the day, the Place de la Bastille was quite crowded, as the car drivers on their way home from work, jammed the streets on and around the square. Knowing that, the two heroines wanted to make sure the creature did not cause the same damage it had done earlier. Creating a few more copies, Flamingo tried to keep it busy, while her partner took care of securing the area around them. “Oh, no you don’t!!! You’re not going anywhere!” -Flamingo and her copies shouted in chorus, as they all attacked the creature at the same time. To make sure no one would come near them, Corbeau Noire brought most of shadows around the combat area, come to life, to create a blockade, and prevent anyone to come near it, as well as stopping the creature from getting out of it. This did not prove easy, as this one tried to jump over it. But Flamingo and her copies made sure to bring it back down. “Bad dog!” -Flamingo yelled at it, when it tried to bite her, only to be hit by one of Corbeau’s flying kicks. “Keep your teeth away from her!” -Corbeau Noire exclaimed, defending her girlfriend. As the battle unfolded, the creature’s behaviour became even more feral. Suddenly, the creature began to change appearance. It began to grow until it reached twice its size. And then, its hair began falling off at an alarming rate, and its skin started to look like it was made of some kind of bluish undercooked pudding. And the stench coming from it was awful, with the closest thing to it being burning garbage mixed with Vieux Bologne. The whole thing felt like straight out of a horror movie. As the stench invaded their nostrils, the girls were forced to hold their breath, so they would not vomit. Attacking it, Flaming and her copies got her canes stuck on the creature’s body, forcing them to pull them out of it, as the creature roared in pain. “Yuck!!! What’s this thing made of, anyway?!” -Flamingo asked, while trying to get rid of the stuff the creature was made of. –“Ugh… looks like pudding and smells like death just barfed it! ” -she said, as the nauseous smell continued to invade her nostrils. “I don’t know, it didn’t look like this a couple of moments ago.” -Corbeau Noire said, as she used the shadows already under her command, to create a makeshift cage for it. –“But maybe that’s a good thing! Maybe it’s a sign it’s reaching its limit! “I’m going to try and hold it again, and then, the two of us, and the rest of you ladies, attack it with everything we’ve got!” -she suggested to Flamingo. She knew she could not make any mistakes this time. She had made the mistake of underestimating that creature minutes before, when she had tried to hold it on the Passarelle du Mornay. She had not expected it to have the power to split in two. But this time, she knew what it was capable of, and she was not going to let it free itself from the shadows’ grasp, if it tried to pull off the same stunt as before.“I think you got it!” -Flamingo exclaimed. But moments after she had said that, the creature started to grow again, this time a lot faster than before, catching the heroines off guard. Corbeau Noire tried to keep it caged, but the sheer speed at which it was growing, did not give her enough time to reshape the cage of shadows she had put it in. Bursting from it, it savagely lunged at the heroines. With its massive paws, it hit three of Flamingo’s copies, disintegrating them, and wasted no time in going after the other copies, as well as the original and Corbeau Noire. Feeling like they needed another plan, Flamingo shoot herself upwards, with Corbeau following her right after. Both were hoping to get a couple of seconds to come up with another strategy, while airborne. But that wish was one that would not come true. Before they were 10 meters up in the air, the creature opened its ugly mouth and several tendrils shot from it. Two seconds later, one of them wrapped itself around Corbeau’s left leg. “Crud!” -Corbeau Noire yelled, as she was pulled down. “Corbeau!!!” -Flamingo yelled, as panic began to take her over. –“Now’s not the time to panic, Rose! Jules needs you!” -she thought to herself. –“I’m coming!”Dodging the other tendrils, the flamingo heroine tried to reach Corbeau, who was seconds away from being devoured by the ugly beast. As for the raven heroine, without a single shadow she could take control of, she resorted to try and kicking her way out of that mess. When that did not work, she used her mirror try and cut the tendril, without great results.“Crud! I’m going to end up in the stomach of that thing!” -Corbeau Noire thought, when she looked up and saw Flamingo reaching for her. “Grab on!” -Flamingo said, as she grabbed Corbeau’s right hand. –“Don’t worry! I’ve got you!” -she said, as she pulled her to her. Gritting her teeth, Corbeau Noire felt like her leg was about to be ripped from the rest of her body. She wanted to tell Flamingo to let go of her, and to attack the creature, but the pain prevented her from talking. Instead, she just screamed in pain. “A-Attack it!!!” -Corbeau Noire yelled at her, having managed the strength t say those words. Flamingo was about to do as she was asked, when she heard a hissing sound, followed by a couple of low thumps and a loud roar from the beast, who let go of Corbeau Noire’s leg, freeing her. Wondering what was happening, the heroines, it did not take long to see that someone else had attacked the beast; someone who used a bow and arrow to fight. “Arrows?!” -Corbeau Noire exclaimed, as she landed. “Looks like we’ve got a guardian angel, looking out for us.” -Flamingo smiled, as she arrived, knowing gully well whom had shot that arrow. It had taken Forest Doe a little bit longer to get to where the action was taking place, but she had arrived in the nick of time, to save the raven heroine. Smiling, she looked at the creature as this one continued to scream in agony, with several arrows lodged all over its body, and more importantly, three lodged in its right eye. “Bullseye, ugly.” -Forest Doe thought to herself.Roaring like the wild animal it was, the creature continued to do that, as its body continued to morph, like it had done before. Only this time, its change was not one anyone expected. This one began to melt, until it was nothing more than a puddle of stinking purple goo. This was the first time anything like this happened to the heroines, and while their first thought was of relief, another thought came to their mind. And that thought was one that screamed “What had just happened?”. “It’s gone…” -Corbeau Noire said, as she looked at the puddle of disgusting goop on the ground. “I don’t know about you, but after all this, I’m pretty sure this thing we just fought, wasn’t an Akuma.” -Flamingo said. –“If it was one, there would be one of those butterflies around, and I don’t see one.” -she stated, as she looked around for one. “I agree. This was something else entirely. I don’t know exactly how to explain it, but the more I think about it, the more I also believe this thing was not an Akuma.” -Corbeau Noire agreed with her girlfriend. –“The good news is that it won’t hurt anyone, anymore.” -she said, as Forest Doe arrived. –“Thanks for the help. That arrow saved my bacon.” “Just call me Robin Hood.” -Forest Doe joked, before letting a light-hearted chuckle. –“I’m glad I got here just in time to lend you girls a hand.” -she said. –“Did you get rid of the Akuma Butterfly?”“That’s just it. There wasn’t one.” -Flamingo said. “There wasn’t one?” -Forest Doe asked, surprised “Yes. This thing didn’t have one.” -Flamingo said.“Since when can Hawk Moth create Akumas without Akuma Butterflies?” -Forest Doe asked. “That’s just it, I don’t think he can… or at least, I don’t think he can. There’s something in this picture that doesn’t feel right.” -Corbeau Noire said. –“What’s more, none of Hawk Moth’s lieutenants was accompanying this Akuma, and every Akuma we’ve fought was accompanied by one of them.” -she added. –“Then, again, there’s that real possibility this wasn’t an Akuma.” “What do you mean, there’s a real possibility that thing wasn’t an Akuma?” -Forest Doe asked, confused. –“What else could this thing have been, but an Akuma?” -she asked, as she looked at what was left of it on the ground. “I don’t know!” -Corbeau Noire yelled, frustrated. –“Sorry… I didn’t want to yell at you.” -she apologized to Forest Doe. –“It’s just that, you didn’t see it, but this creature was acting differently from most other Akumas we’ve faced. Also, like we told you, it didn’t have an Akuma Butterfly… if it was an Akuma, then, it’s got to be a new kind that doesn’t even need one of those butterflies.” All that had happened had left more questions unanswered than answers to them. They did not know what was going on, but something told them they had to share what had happened with the rest of the gang. “We better get out of here.” -Flamingo said, as she saw people starting to approach them, including the media. –“I’m not in the mood to give interviews. “I’m with you. Let’s teleport to the Garden of the Ancients and tell this to the master.” -Corbeau Noire said, while looking at Flamingo and Doe....
Miraculous AU Chapter 22 - Freedom, Alix stood before her mother as the woman shrieked and yelled at her. She stared at the ground while her mother reminded her about everything wrong about her. She blocked out her mother’s words as she reflected. It had been a long week in the hospital, but it was nice. The girls had come to visit Alix often. Juleka and Rose had visited the most to ensure that she was doing well. Marinette and Alya would stop by to keep her company. It wasn’t until Alya’s visit that she met Kaalki. It was then when she learned that it was Kaalki that warned the others of the monster and her capture. That the horse she saw was no hallucination of the poison. Fear clawed at Alix as memories of that night flooded to her. She had put herself in a lot of danger before that creature, but that night was the first time she felt afraid. If not for Kaalki and her friends, she would have likely died, and it would have been her fault. All she had to do was be good, to behave, but she didn’t. Instead, she had to disobey and was punished for it. The monster put poison in her and it fed into what was already within her. Alix looked up at her mother, who continued her lecture. She couldn’t deny she had a good enough life. A family that mostly loved her, a roof over her head, and friends that did love her. Even with this, there was poison within her that consumed her. Hatred for her successful brother who got lucky in life. Contempt for her mother who expected her to be just like her brother. Annoyance at her father, who cared, but was a passive little bitch. Anger at the world for telling her what she should be, not who she wanted to be. Alix looked down. She wasn’t entirely sure what she wanted to be, but she knew she wanted to be free. Free from the expectations of her parents. Free from the shadow of her brother. Now, she wanted to be free of this hatred in her. After being poisoned and the hallucinations she witnessed, she wanted it gone. She touched the goggles atop her head and closed her eyes. Freedom was close at hand. Freedom from everything. “Are you even listening to me?” her mother shrieked. Alix opened her eyes and looked at her mother. “No, I’m not.” Alix’s mother went into a new lecture about Alix’s listening skills. She ignored her mother. She saw her father out of the corner of her eye and smiled. She reared back her foot and tapped the tip of her toe against the floor three times. He stopped and immediately joined her mother. “What are you doing here? You can talk with her later, Alim.” “I know, dear, but, Alix, please don’t.” Alix smirked and tapped her toe three times again. “Alix, I know you and I ask you, please don’t.” “I’m sorry, Dad, but I’m done listening to this heartless harpy scream at me. I’m tired of feeling like second best. I’m so tired of the anger and contempt I feel everyday just being who I am. I want to be free from it all.” Alim paled. He approached Alix and took her hands. “Honey, please don’t talk like that. There are better alternatives to that.” Alix sighed and squeezed Alim’s hands. “I don’t mean that, Dad. But, I will be free.” “No, you won’t. So long as you live under our roof, you will live by my rules,” Alix’s mother shrieked. “I know. It’s why I want to say a few things. Dad, I love you and you are a passive bitch, but you tried and thank you. Mother, I fucking hate you. And, Kaalki, full gallop.” Kaalki materialized and vanished into the goggles. They transformed from dark grey to white and the lens changed from black to tan. Alix pulled them over her eyes and transformed. Alix’s top transformed into a brown sleeveless crop top with a white stripe down the middle. Her pants became brown short shorts with light brown leggings under them. Light brown gloves covered her arms up to her bicep. The cuff of the gloves and the hand turned white as bracers covered her forearms. Her sneakers transformed into a pair of brown roller blades with white wheels. A brown pack appeared around her right thigh along with a dark brown stringy belt around her hip. Horseshoes decorated her bracers, skates, and belt. Along her back, on her belt, a boomerang appeared. Alim gasped and reached for Alix, but she stepped back. “Alix, please, don’t do this! It’s a death sentence.” Alix chuckled. “My life was like that long before this.” “Alix, stop this silly nonsense. What do you even plan to do? Become one of those silly little heroes?” Alix’s mother asked. “I plan to be free. Whatever comes, comes. But, I will not be staying here.” “Oh yeah? Where do you even have to go?” Alix smirked. “Voyage.” The air charged around Alix. A pale green light enveloped her, and she vanished. She materialized in her bedroom. She grabbed one of her backpacks and stuffed her full of clothes. Once it was fit to burst, she zipped it up and put it on. She used Voyage and teleported onto the Louvre. She grinned as she rode down the side of the building into the plaza. People gasped and jumped back as she zoomed through. Alix laughed as she skated through Paris. She weaved in and out of traffic as she was faster than any vehicle. She reveled in the dumbstruck people when she passed them by. She activated Defiance and leapt from the streets onto nearby buildings. She rode along the walls as she jumped from building to building. She moved at speeds that’d rival a jet fighter along the buildings. When Defiance ended, she plummeted towards the ground as the rules applied to her again. She stuck a superhero landing and startled the people around her. She winked at the crowd, then headed to the nearest park. As she arrived, her suit started to fall apart. “Kaalki, dismount.” Kaalki appeared from the goggles and fell into Alix’s hand. Alix pulled the goggles onto her head as she sat in a grassy patch. She placed Kaalki on the ground. “There you go. I don’t have any proper food, but will grass be ok for now?” Kaalki snorted. “I suppose. It’s green enough, I guess. So, what is the plan?” Alix hummed. She placed her backpack at her lap and leaned on it. “I have a friend that should let me crash at their place. They only live with their father who’s usually as busy as Miss Couffaine.” “Is it one of your girls?” “No. It’s someone else.” “Why not one of the girls? Wouldn’t they let you stay with them?” “Probably, but it’s more the parents I’m worried about, or siblings. Marinette and her parents are cool enough, so they’re a back-up. Alya is cool, but she’s got little sisters and I hate kids. Juleka and her mom are cool, but Luka is acting really weird lately, at least according to Juleka. Rose is sweet, but she’d get on my nerves really quick. Not to mention that her stepdad is fucking creepy as all hell.” “I see. So, who exactly is this person?” “He’s my best friend outside of the girls. He can be annoying and, well, a boy, but I respect him.” “Does he get along with the ladybug holder?” Alix nodded her head back and forth. “Better than most that would get along with him. Why?” “Curiosity.” Alix shrugged. She looked around while Kaalki ate. People stared and whispered but kept their distance. She smiled and looked at Kaalki. “You ready?” Kaalki nodded. “Kaalki, full gallop.” Kaalki vanished into the goggles and transformed Alix. Alix pulled the goggles down and picked up the backpack. She used Voyage and vanished. ~~ “This is utter bullshit!” Kim yelled. Max sighed. “Relax. I’ll show it to you again.” “Why bother? This shit is stupid. Why do we have to take our classes online? Why can’t we just go to school?” Max shook his head. “Have you forgotten that golem creature already? What about the storm? And a few other attacks since then? It’s for our own safety.” Kim rolled his eyes. “Maybe we should take a break. You’ve got some time before the assignment is due.” “Fine. I’m going to get a snack.” Max watched Kim leave the room. He sighed and leaned back in the seat. He sat up when he heard three stones hit the window. He approached and opened it. Down below, Alix stood against the wall. “Alix? What are you doing here?” “Where’s Kim?” “He went to get a snack. What’s going on?” “I need to talk with him.” “Hold on.” Max moved from the window and to the stairs. “Hey, Kim, Alix is-.” Kim bolted from the kitchen and up the stairs. He ran to the window and looked down at Alix. “Lookie here, little miss trouble herself. What brings you here?” “I need a favor. Can I come in?” “Of course, but you know the rule. You have ten seconds to get up here.” Kim grinned as he counted down. As he got to one, the air charged in his room and Alix materialized. He cursed and jumped back while Max gawked at Alix. “Woah. Wait, are you one of those heroes, Alix?” Max asked. “I’m not a hero yet, but that’s the plan. But, that’s not important.” “Not important? Are fucking with me? This is cool! I’ve got so many questions,” Kim said. “And they might be answered if you hear me out.” “Alright. So, what’s this little favor?” “I need a place to stay.” Kim laughed. “Did you run away?” “Yes.” Kim’s smile vanished. “Wait, you did? What happened?” Alix sighed. She placed down her bag and sat. “I was caught up in a monster attack about a week ago. She poisoned me and it fed on the venom already in me. All my hatred and anger at the world and my parents. If it wasn’t for Juleka, I’m sure I would have died. Both poisons would have been my death.” Kim and Max knelt beside Alix. They each put a hand on her shoulder. Alix placed a hand on each of theirs. “When I was in the hospital, I was fine. But when I got home, I felt all that anger again. My mother laid into me about everything wrong with me, but I just couldn’t take it anymore. I wanted to be free. Free from the poison and I wasn’t going to be free if I stayed there.” “Are you worried that they might come after you? Call the police to bring you back?” Max asked. Alix laughed. “They can try, but they’re never gonna be able to keep me. So long as I have Kaalki with me, I will always be free.” “Kaalki?” Kim and Max asked. “Kaalki, dismount.” Kaalki reappeared and transformed Alix back. Kaalki bowed. “Greetings, young men. I am Kaalki, kwami of freedom.” Max’s jaw dropped and Kim grinned. Alix smirked and lifted the goggles atop her head. “So, you grant Alix powers? Do the other heroes have kwamis too?” Kim asked. “Correct on both accounts.” “That’s fucking cool. Are there more? Can I get a kwami?” “There are plenty more, however we decide our holders. But, a little secret. We tend to seek holders close to the ladybug and black cat once they’ve been activated. Since my holder is close to the ladybug, it would benefit you to be seen in her company if you want a kwami to consider you,” Kaalki said. “Then it’s settled! Alix, you know where the spare room is. I’ll let Dad know what happened once he’s home.” “Wait, shouldn’t you talk with him first?” Max asked. “Why? He loves Alix. Besides, it’s not the first time she’s crashed here. And I want to have a kwami.” “To be a hero?” Max asked. “What? No. Well, maybe. I just think it’d be fun. Is it fun, Alix?” “It is. It’s freedom and euphoria all wrapped in one. The enhanced agility and speed as you perform inhuman feats is incredible. The knowledge that no one can stop you once you’re on a roll is amazing.” Kaalki smiled and sat on Alix’s shoulder. She nuzzled Alix’s cheek. “As it will always be. We are freedom, untamed and true, young knight.” “Thank you, Kaalki.” Kim stood and grabbed Alix’s bag. “C’mon, let’s get you settled, then I have questions for Kaalki.” “What about your assignment?” Max asked. “We have time. Besides, you suggested a break after all.” “Very well. I suppose I’m a little curious myself about this whole thing.” “Good, let’s go.”
Miraculous AU Chapter 21 - Let's Talk, Louve sat on the railing of the Eiffel Tower under the moon. She reflected on the day while she waited for Chat to show up. She had been released from the hospital that day. Before she left, she checked on Alix. Alix was doing well and had been introduced to Kaalki. Unfortunately, Alix would be stuck in the hospital for about a week. The wounds Alix suffered were deep and may scar if not treated properly. On top of Alix’s wounds, she felt… different. She wasn’t sure what happened, but something changed in Alix. The doctors insist it’s likely PTSD due to the attack, so they want to keep an eye on Alix in case she does anything drastic. After Louve’s visit with Alix, she headed home. Once she was home, she had to fight Nora. Despite Nora’s profession, she went down to Louve. Nora refused to accept the results, but her parents saw the strength and skill she’d been gifted thanks to Fang. They were more accepting now than they were before. The twins were happy with the news, though probably because they’ve grown attached to Fang. Despite the acceptance from mostly everyone, it was Nino’s reaction that cut Louve deep. He begged her to give up the hero stuff, that she could get killed. He pointed out that she had already been injured, so it could only be a matter of time before something worse happened. She had snapped at him. She told him that she’d be a hero for the people and those she loved, and that he was just paranoid because of what happened to his mother. Regret sliced through Louve. She shouldn’t have mentioned Nino’s mother. She should have thought before she spoke, but she didn’t. When she realized what she said, he lashed out. He told her that if she wasn’t so reckless, he wouldn’t have to worry. That if she didn’t get herself in the situations she did, everything would be fine. That maybe, they’d still be together if she were a better person. Louve lifted her right hand above her and stared at the chain ring bracelet. A better person? What was wrong with her that needed to change? Nothing ever felt wrong about how she was. Maybe it was her recklessness and how she jumped at the first hint of danger? But if she didn’t, then who would? Who’d stand in the way of danger to protect those ignorant of the danger? Was it her pushiness and need to get involved with everyone’s lives? That’s what she was doing right now. She was going to interfere in Marinette and Chat’s lives in hopes to bring them together. Marinette agreed to at least let her meet with Chat before Marinette did as Ladybug, though without knowing the reason why. Or did Nino mean to call Louve selfish? Selfish for choosing this life of action. Selfish for disregarding the feelings of those she loved while she pursued her own thrills. Maybe she was selfish. She didn’t intend on becoming a hero so soon. Maybe eventually, but she wanted to show off the adventures of Ladybug and Chat as they saved the city. After that storm, how could she sit by and just report on the issue? She had the power to make a change and she was going to. “I will do what’s right, always,” Louve whispered. Louve’s ears twitched. She heard the sound of fluttering. She looked around but didn’t see anything she’d associate with the sound. However, Chat had arrived and locked eyes with her. “Louve? What are you doing here? Where’s Ladybug?” Louve smirked. “Good to see you too, Kitty.” “Sorry. It’s good to see you too. But where’s Ladybug?” “You’ll see her once we talk. Remember?” “Uh, I am now. What exactly did you want to talk about?” “Hold that thought for a moment. Clairvoyance.” Louve looked around for any sign of butterflies but didn’t see any. She hummed and kept her eyes on the area. “Is something wrong?” “No. Just making sure we don’t have any eavesdroppers. So, to cut to the chase, I know who you really are.” Chat’s ears drooped. “Oh. How did you find out?” “Because I know your face. I’ve seen it for years through two of my friends. A designer and a model. I also know that you know Ladybug’s identity.” “The phone?” Louve nodded. “That’s actually why I wanted to speak with you. I want to know something personal.” Chat eyed Louve suspiciously. “What exactly do you want to know?” “Do you love her? Ladybug?” Chat blushed. “I don’t know. I know I think of her as a friend, but I don’t know if there’s more to it. I know, well think, I have a crush on Marinette.” Louve swept the area again but saw nothing. “I’m listening.” “Are you going to tell her any of this? I know you’re her friend?” “No. There are somethings I know I can’t share with her.” Chat considered for a moment. “I’m not sure how to feel or even what I’m feeling sometimes. It’s just been about two weeks since I’ve known all of you and everything is different. The static, unchanging world I’ve known is thrown off its axis. First there was Marinette. Seeing her was a surprise as I had never seen a girl as pretty or kind as her. There was just something her that drew me in.” Louve smiled. “Isn’t it nice? You know she won’t judge you. That she’ll accept you fully with no conditions or strings attached. That no matter what, she’ll love you without hesitation. But, don’t you feel that with Ladybug?” Chat sat down. “I did, but there wasn’t the instant draw like with Marinette. I don’t know what was different, but it’s changing. The more time I spend with Ladybug, the happier I am. I enjoy her company and hate being away from her. She makes everything better. Even just talking with Marinette through text or even just seeing her interact with your friends, I’m kinda starting to see it.” “Do you think you’d date either one of them?” “What? No. Maybe? I don’t know.” Louve hummed. “Well, do ever want to do more?” “What more could I want?” Louve looked back as her Clairvoyance ended. “Y’know. Hugging, holding hands, kissing?” Chat pursed his lips as his face turned red. He covered his mouth and looked away. Louve snorted. “You can tell you were sheltered, Kitty.” “Why would you ask that?” “Because I have a request, no matter which one you decided to pursue.” Chat’s ears twitched. “And what’s that?” Louve jumped from the railing over to Chat. “Please don’t tell her who you are. That you’re-.” She trailed off and mouthed Adrien. “Don’t worry, I had no plans on telling her who I was.” “Wait, really? Even though you know who she is?” “Yes, but only because he doesn’t actually exist.” “What do you mean?” Chat sighed as his tail lashed about. “That boy doesn’t actually exist. He’s no one. He’s just a doll, a prop, a pretty face. Something made to promote the brand of a man who just needed a replacement. I am sorry. I know you and Souris know, but I don’t want anyone else to. I don’t want them to see that boy as me. I want them to see Chat as me.” Louve put a hand on Chat’s shoulder. “I like this you more than that boy. This you feels real, so I won’t tell the others.” Chat smiled. “Thank you.” “Of course. Friends help friends. Now, I won’t keep you from Ladybug. I’ll summon your Lady and be on my way.” Louve pulled out her phone and texted Marinette. She jumped onto the railing, about to head off. “Wait! Before you leave, I want to ask you something.” Louve paused. “What’s up?” “Well, I had been told to not push things and let my feelings develop naturally. But I wonder, what exactly is it like to be in love?” Louve hummed. She thought back to her time with Nino. “Love is fun and warm. It’s not finding your other half, but someone that balances you. It’s your best friend and entire heart wrapped into one person. They are your thoughts and heart as you want to be by their side. It’s wanting what’s best for that person, even if they grow to hate you and shut you out.” Her voice cracked at the end. “Louve?” Tears fell from Louve’s eyes as she looked back at Chat. “Love is the greatest joy and the deepest sorrow. It provides the warmest, sweetest memories, but will cut deep when they are gone. And it’s worth every moment to love. Cause it means experiencing the greatest joy in life, to give and feel loved. If you get the chance, Chat, take it. Because to love is to live.” Chat’s eyes widened. Louve smiled and stepped off the railing. He walked up to the railing and watched as she landed and took off running. His mind swirled as he watched her leave. How she described love was similar to how Nathalie spoke of the woman she loved. How she felt alive the moment she fell in love, and even if the woman would never love her, that didn’t matter in the end. She didn’t resent the woman as she got to experience the greatest joys. Love seemed wonderful, but Chat wondered if he was even capable of experiencing it. He wanted it more than anything, for people to love and care for him, but was he capable of it in return? Would he want to if it meant the possibility of pain? Louve had seemed to be hurt by love and Nathalie certainly was. But even with the pain and sorrow, they don’t resent love or the people. Could it really be worth it? If it was, could he love another like Louve and Nathalie had once? If he did, would it be Ladybug? Chat knew that Ladybug was Marinette. It was hard to see at times, but as he got to know Marinette, he could see they were the same person. He didn’t understand the differences in how he felt towards them, but could he love Ladybug? He saw her as a friend, but even now that didn’t feel completely right. He would call Queen Bee a friend without a second thought, but Ladybug felt like more when compared to Queen Bee. Could it be love? Or were they just really good friends? “Boo!” Ladybug said. Chat jumped when he saw Ladybug beside him. Ladybug giggled. “Surprised ya, didn’t I?” Chat chuckled. “Yeah, you did.” “What were you thinking about, Kitty?” “Well, I was wondering what love is like. People seem to think I am in love, but I don’t know.” Ladybug smiled. “May I offer my two cents?” “Always, meow lady.” Ladybug snickered as she nudged Chat. “Awful.” Chat smiled and nudged Ladybug back. “Always.” “Anyways, love is the most wonderful thing ever. It’s safe and secure. Knowing that someone is always there to help you and remind you of what there is in life. It’s guidance when you’re lost and wanting the best for those around you, even if its not what you want. It’s being there to remind them that everything will be alright, and we’ll get through this together. It knows no bounds whether it’s familial, platonic, or even romantic. Love is love.” “Does it ever hurt to love?” “Well, of course, but anything can hurt if you let it. Are you afraid you might get hurt if you love?” “A little. I’ve never been in love, so I don’t know.” “Not even familial or platonic?” Chat fell silent. Ladybug watched him as her heart sank and her stomach twisted in knots. “Chat? What about me and Queen Bee? Aren’t we… friends?” Chat moved and took Ladybug’s hands in his own. “I would call Queen Bee a friend without question. I did with you, but something is different. I don’t know what it is just yet. Maybe I just need some more time, I don’t know. All I know is something is different with you, Ladybug.” Ladybug stared at Chat for a moment, then squeezed his hands. “Take your time, Chat. Because I don’t know how I feel about you as well. I know you’re a friend, someone I can rely on and trust, but then there’s more. Feelings I don’t fully understand either. So, I think we both could use some time to figure things out.” Chat blinked, then smiled. “Thank you. I’m sorry to have brought this up. It feels a little awkward now.” “Nonsense, Chat. No matter where our relationship goes, we’re partners in this til the very end. We need to be there for each other no matter what. So, I’m glad you mentioned this. Now, let’s go.” “Go where?” Ladybug released Chat’s hands and jumped onto the railing. “C’mon, Kitty. The night is still young enough. Let’s have fun.” “Are you sure?” “Of course! C’mon! Catch this little red bug.” Ladybug threw her yo-yo and flew into the city. Chat smiled and gave chase.
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