Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login
About Literature / Student CassieFemale/United States Recent Activity
Deviant for 8 Years
Needs Core Membership
Statistics 137 Deviations 858 Comments 11,813 Pageviews
×

Newest Deviations

Literature
Purrs Like a Kitten
During a fight with a new villain, Régresser, Chat Noir is transformed into a child. Ladybug, as Marinette, has to then care for the younger Chaton Noir while trying to figure out how to stop Régresser from turning all of Paris into children.
~
       A blue balloon drifted towards wispy clouds, having slipped away from the tethered clusters in the park below. Decorative cloths covered each of the outdoor tables, which was occupied by half-eaten cakes and scattered paper plates. Chatting adults and sweet-craving children sat at these tables. A dark-skinned woman, with shoulder-length hair and a magenta suit, was in the middle of clearing torn, wrapping paper from one of the tables when she heard squealing laughter. A boy resembling her chased several boys taller than him through the open space. The former fired torrents of water at the latter with a squirt gun. The woman called out, “Didier! I told you not to use that water gun here!”
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 6 0
Literature
Territorial Warnings: Thorns and Pages
The Graceful Assassin finds something he is not meant to; a secret section to the library. In his haste to take advantage of the situation, he neglected the fact that rules drastically change when one enters the territory of another.
~
       The clunking of black boots echoed through the endless white halls. There was also the swishing of a black coat against black pants, as well as the small chinking of the silver drawstrings against each other. Shoulder-length, pink hair brushed against the rim of the lowered hood, and the man continued down the corridor.
       Silence soon spoke as he stopped in front of a pair of white doors. He opened them with his black gloved hands and entered a vast room filled with shelves that nearly touched the ceiling; each shelf was packed with heavy but featureless, hard-covered books.
       Marluxia scanned the library thoughtfully. He recalled how Larxene would commonly escape here an
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 0 0
Literature
Sea-Salt Ice Cream
A faint whiff of the sweet and salty mixture is enough to stir the heavily repressed regrets and doubts of the most loyal of Organization XIII. Much like the ice cream, those pleasant memories leave a bittersweet aftertaste.
~
       The sunset rested across the clock tower and sloping rooftops. At the same time, cooled shadows nestled in alleys and in-between the cobblestone streets. The whistle and rumble of a distant train lazily traveled through the yellow skies, which steadily faded into pink and ember. But those listening to the sleeping afternoon may not have heard the lowered voices exchanged under the veil of darkness.
       “Despite their bestial behavior, Heartless can be very picky about where they congregate. It is more likely to locate Heartless in areas that most lack any form of light, whether natural or artificial. Can you think of an area within this town that best fits that description?” prompted a young man
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 1 0
Literature
Mother's Day
It's Mother's Day, and Marinette is helping her father surprise her mother with a party. While they prepare, Sabine takes a walk and meets an unexpected companion. Meanwhile at city hall, the mayor rejects a request to renovate an old park placed by a woman named Rosalie Sylviane. She falls under Hawkmoth's influence and becomes Mother Nature, a villain that controls plants.
~
       Small feet pattered down wooden stairs, with morning light streaming in through the window. It was a petite woman, with short black hair and a cheongsam-style blouse. The smell of flour and sugar filled the air. Just before Sabine reached the last step, her husband’s towering figure and her daughter’s slender form rushed into the way.
       “Good morning, Mom,” Marinette cheerfully greeted just as Tom spoke up similarly, “Morning, dear!”
       Sabine chuckled, “Well, good morning. You two are up b
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 9 2
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 26
       Heaven or Hell? Military Police or Scout Regiment? I never thought that I’d get to this point but…it’s time that I made my choice.
       The young man found himself in a broad hallway with tall ceilings. Warm candles on silver sticks cast their light on massive paintings. Silky curtains partly covered towering, stain-glass windows. He stood on a red carpet with gold trimmings, surrounded by piles of gold and silver forms of utensils and trinkets. A small creaking noise caught his ear, and he looked to see a golden scale, one side filled with delicate pastries and the other filled with red wine. However, the young man noticed, on a silver pile looming above the scale, the cup was being filled with red droplets from a cow’s slit throat. Suddenly, his ears were filled with the sound of several men singing as once, “Do you know, who I am?~”
       Judgment Boy then dropped
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 2 3
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 25
       I had lost hope, yet I find myself still scrambling forward. I’ve come to a realization. This entire time, I’ve been trying to run from a choice that I need to make. But I’m tired of running. The decision is inevitable.
       The young man awoke on a cold, stone floor. It was dark, apart from the moonlight that came in from the small, barred window high above his reach. He slowly picked himself up and noticed a pair of small lights on the other side of the room; it was a pair of glowing, orange eyes. The young man pulled back in surprise.
       “You haven’t escaped yet,” a hoarse and young voice stated.
       The young man relaxed slightly, murmuring, “It’s you…” All the while, along with the sound of scraping chains, the figure hobbled forward, revealing itself to be a cat-like boy dressed in a striped shirt. “…Neko Zo
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 1 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 24
       I don’t see any point in resisting anymore. Why shouldn’t I be satisfied with the way that things are? By conforming to society’s rules, corrupt or not, I can at least find comfort in knowing that I won’t be alone. I’ll be among everyone else in the herd.
       He seemed to drag his feet as he slowly made his way down the hall. The young man trudged through the corridors, barely motivated to move forward. He only looked up from the ground when he heard a group of voices talking down the hall.
       “Hey, you shouldn’t be walking around all by yourself,” stated one person among the small cluster of people that faced him.
       Another person agreed, “Yeah, you should be with us.”
       “We understand how you feel,” assured someone else in the group, causing him to slow to a stop.
     
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 2 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 23
       Hope is something that I almost lost sight of, but it is also a very wonderful thing. With it, mountains become hilltops, and freedom is just around the corner.
       The young man moved steadily down the dark hallways, with dim candles flickering before him. His echoing steps finally came to a stop when he entered into the unoccupied lobby. He looked to the shut doors and paused beside the empty, front desk. The candle flickered as he continued to stay where he was.
       “Are you…leaving?” someone slowly called out from behind. The young man stiffened and turned. He could see a figure peering around the corner, with its blue eye staring at him.
       The young man slowly started to back up towards the door, answering hesitantly, “I-I…Yes. I am.”
       He saw the figure’s eyebrow rise in response, as he replied, “That
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 2 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 22
       What is a solider? A pawn, with no purpose other than to follow orders and die? Or is a soldier someone that chooses to follow orders and die on their own accord?
       The young man turned away from the shuttered window and exited out of his room. He turned to his right and paused. He heard a pair of shuffling footsteps as candlelight approached from around the corner. Upon hearing a familiar, oily chuckle, the young man turned left and hurried down the opposite direction. After passing several doors, he turned right again. The young man was met with a deep-throated chuckle.
       He looked to his left and saw table set up nearby. There were two chairs; in one chair was a man-like creature holding his overweight form in a noble, expensive-looking attire with red and orange colors. His blonde hair hung around the sides and back of his pure white head, matching the curled mustache that framed his bulging cheeks.
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 2 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 21
       I finally returned to my room. Yet, I was restless. There were so many questions and uncertainties that I couldn’t just ignore them. I’ll probably regret this decision later, but I’m willing to take a risk, all for the sake of getting answers.
       The young man stopped outside of a room labeled with the golden numbers 205. He pulled open the door and was met by the sight of the simple room, with minimal furniture and the closed, shuttered window across from him. A candle flickered atop the table in the corner, illuminating the room in orange light.
       The young man stepped inside and shut the door behind him. He walked across the room and over to the bed. He did not take off his boots or his jacket and simply sat down on the edge of the bed. Slowly, his gaze scanned over the room. He stared at the candle, watching the wick burn and the wax occasionally drip. Silence filled the room
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 1 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 20
       I was told a vision of my future. Despite the alleged foresight I was given, everything still seems uncertain. Whether or not I’ve come to a decision, or even if there’s a choice to begin with, there’s no turning back.
       The young man walked slowly down the hall, trudging his way through. He paused when white vapor started to gather at the spot in front of him, as a croaking voice rang through the air, “Burning…
       “Burning,” the old woman’s voice repeated, growing clearer in the dissipating vapor. A green tent of sorts now sat in the middle of the hall, blocking the young man’s path. Within the tent was a round table, with candles on either side. Standing on the middle of the table was a short, human-like frog dressed in black robes. Her matted, grey hair hung from under her black cap. Her green and slimy hands circled over a crystal ball atop
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 2 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 19
       When I look back, there are things that I wish I could’ve done differently. If I could just turn time backwards, like turning a clock, I could fix what went wrong. I could save who I cared for.
       Farther down the hall, there was a constant ticking noise. The closer that the young man got, the more sources of tick-tocking that he heard. Finally, he came to an area filled with clocks; on the left side of the hall was a crowd of various clocks and hourglasses. As he walked, he passed glass cases with dozens of watches sitting inside. He began to make his way past a three-walled room filled with time-telling devices in the middle of the noisy display, but there were also two clock-shaped figures standing inside. The shorter one looked at the young man before turning towards the taller of the two, stating in a child’s voice, “Daddy! He looks like he’s got a lot of regrets in his past!”
   
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 1 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 18
       Memories are…painful. Once innocent, even hopeful thoughts become hurtful reminders in the face of a bleak present. I want to forget, to save myself from the pain, but…that would mean letting go of those dear to me.
       The young man slowly made his way down the empty corridors. Along the way, he sighed to himself, “I’m not even sure where my room is…or even if that’s the direction I want to head in…”
       He went quiet, simply listening to his own repetitive steps as he walked. Suddenly, there was a voice, almost ghastly-sounding, that came from down the hall. It was his own voice, shouting, “No! No, this is our chance. We can get the drop on them while they’re preoccupied. Let’s go! Make a break for HQ while they’re still distracted!”
       The young man paused, looking down the hall that the noise cam
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 2 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 17
       When something dies, it goes from flesh to bone, from bone to dust. Afterwards, there’s nothing left, nothing but memories left behind in others. If that’s gone too, then there’s nothing at all. No flesh. No bone. No dust. No one at all.
       The young man passed one glowing candle after another, as his thudding steps echoed through the hall. He rounded the corner and stopped abruptly; there was a bare skeleton lying in the middle of the hall. The young man stared at it a moment, backing away. He glanced around the corridor, left and right, but saw no movement or anything notable. The young man looked at the skeleton once again before turning and running off. He ran and ran until he saw a familiar, moving candlelight down the hall.
       Gregory stopped and turned at the sound of approaching footsteps. Upon seeing the young man he greeted, “Why, hello, my friend. What brings you-oh!
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 1 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 16
       Some things just seem to be the way that life is. It’s easier to accept the idea that the worst things in life are simply natural. And yet, there are those that believe that things can be changed. It’s hard to say if they’re right, or even if they’ll succeed.
       The young man walked steadily down the hallway, but he slowed to a stop as he noticed posters on the wall nearby. They were black and white wanted posters. On one poster was what looked like a man wearing a large hat; he had dark sideburns, a curled mustache and half-closed eyes. On the other poster was a young looking girl, also wearing a large hat; she had pigtails, freckles, dark colored circles on her cheeks and a similar emotionless expression. The descriptions referred them as “CACTUS GUNMAN” and “CACTUS GIRL” “TWO WANTED REBELS FROM CACTUSLAND.”
       After reading the posters, the yo
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 1 0
Literature
The Honest Guest: Night 15
       I did what I thought was right. It saved some lives, didn’t it? But…there were also plenty lost. I don’t know if I could make the right decision, even if there was one. I’m just not fit to be the one that leads and makes choices.
       The sound of a man’s singing caused the young man to come to a stop. Along with it was the sound of metal scraping, like something sliding down a railing. He curiously looked in that direction, but it was out of sight.
“Do you know, who I am~”
       The young man cautiously continued down the hall and peered around the corner. He looked just in time to see a pair of pink and yellow lights disappearing from out of his vision. The hallway went quiet, and the young man leaned back, relaxing. Suddenly, there was the sound of chain length unwinding rapidly from above him. He looked up and saw the metallic figure drop from the ceiling an
:iconOshiMoon:OshiMoon
:iconoshimoon:OshiMoon 1 0

Favourites

Epic Mickey: Attacking by Hamilton74 Epic Mickey: Attacking :iconhamilton74:Hamilton74 556 33 miniMEGA 59 Love and War by kenshinmeowth miniMEGA 59 Love and War :iconkenshinmeowth:kenshinmeowth 144 42 mrh by cafechan mrh :iconcafechan:cafechan 99 25 super fighting robots by captainosaka super fighting robots :iconcaptainosaka:captainosaka 807 163 Tender Lender by knockabiller Tender Lender :iconknockabiller:knockabiller 482 118 Mega Man Family Portrait by Photia Mega Man Family Portrait :iconphotia:Photia 653 48 Protoman Suave by RobDuenas Protoman Suave :iconrobduenas:RobDuenas 335 13 Dan Vs Hearth's Warming Eve by PixelKitties Dan Vs Hearth's Warming Eve :iconpixelkitties:PixelKitties 1,753 391 Dan Vs Silent Hill by kichigai Dan Vs Silent Hill :iconkichigai:kichigai 1,520 172 Angry Dan by kichigai Angry Dan :iconkichigai:kichigai 461 72 The Light family by RyanJampole The Light family :iconryanjampole:RyanJampole 446 34 GIGANTIC - Bloodwitch Xenobia Skin by Gorrem GIGANTIC - Bloodwitch Xenobia Skin :icongorrem:Gorrem 2,163 39 MegaRoll V3 Color Concept by RyanJampole MegaRoll V3 Color Concept :iconryanjampole:RyanJampole 355 89 The Four Horsemen 02 color vrs by rubendevela The Four Horsemen 02 color vrs :iconrubendevela:rubendevela 445 77 Try Everything, Try Carnivory by rubendevela Try Everything, Try Carnivory :iconrubendevela:rubendevela 507 122 Bubbleman by MRandWN Bubbleman :iconmrandwn:MRandWN 126 17

Activity


During a fight with a new villain, Régresser, Chat Noir is transformed into a child. Ladybug, as Marinette, has to then care for the younger Chaton Noir while trying to figure out how to stop Régresser from turning all of Paris into children.
~

       A blue balloon drifted towards wispy clouds, having slipped away from the tethered clusters in the park below. Decorative cloths covered each of the outdoor tables, which was occupied by half-eaten cakes and scattered paper plates. Chatting adults and sweet-craving children sat at these tables. A dark-skinned woman, with shoulder-length hair and a magenta suit, was in the middle of clearing torn, wrapping paper from one of the tables when she heard squealing laughter. A boy resembling her chased several boys taller than him through the open space. The former fired torrents of water at the latter with a squirt gun. The woman called out, “Didier! I told you not to use that water gun here!”

       “But we’re trying to cool off!” the youngest called back, and all the boys came to a stop.

       The woman responded, “Find some other way! None of you have other clothes to change into!”

       Didier Eudon sagged his shoulders and grumbled, “…What’s the point of getting a squirt gun for my birthday if I can’t use it?”

       One of his friends with blond hair spoke up to the group, “Hey! Let’s sit in the shade!”

       Everyone, including Didier, agreed and hurried over to the trees. They threw themselves onto the cool grass, panting. Once they caught their breath, the boys arranged themselves into a loose circle and started chatting. After a series of jokes, one the boys with dark hair piped up, showing a picture on his phone of a man in a green suit, “Oh, speaking of Friday, did you hear about the premiere for Alien Fighter II?”

       “No way! The first one is my favorite movie!” Didier exclaimed excitedly. The group smiled knowingly, as his squirt gun was based off of the hero’s weapon in Alien Fighter.

       “I hear that the sequel is gonna go all out, too. More action and even awesomer effects,” the dark-haired boy continued.

       “Oh man, we’ve totally gotta see it,” Didier stated, bouncing in his seat. His mother, having overheard, straightened up abruptly.

       “Are you talking seeing about that new Alien Fighter movie?” she inquired before stating, “Oh no, you definitely can’t go, Didier.”

       He immediately turned in disbelief, “But, Mom, why?

       “It’s too violent, and you’re not old enough,” she simply explained, continuing to pick up trash.

       At this, Didier stood, insisting, “Mom! I’m the youngest in my class. I’ll be the only one that doesn’t!”

       However, his mother shrugged and replied, “Don’t throw a fit over things you can’t change, Didier.”

       The boy scowled as his mother walked off. To his surprise, Didier heard snickering behind him. He turned, seeing his friends trying to suppress their laughter. Didier felt his stomach twinge. The squirt gun shook in his hand, and he stormed off.

       He ran to a tree in the back corner of the park, where the chatter was farthest away. The boy threw his back against the tree, exhaling hot air from his nose.

       Didier muttered, waving around his squirt gun, “It’s my birthday. I’m another year older, but I still can’t do what I want. Just because someone’s older than me, they get to tell me what to do. Look down on me. It’s not fair. It’s just not-” Didier pressed his fists to his eyes and sat down, finishing in a near-shout, “It’s not fair!”

***

       A deep chuckle echoed as a mechanical, circular shutter opened. The bluish light poured into the round chamber, falling onto a man and a cloud of white butterflies that filled the room with pulse-like wingbeats. As the light reflected off of the butterflies’ white bodies, the sunlight gleamed on his silver cowl and was swallowed by his black-and-purple suit. He sighed with mock-sympathy as he looked to the wrought-iron window, “What a sad display. A young man on his birthday feeling cheated out of his celebration.”

       He held out his black gloved hand, allowing a butterfly to land on his palm. The man then put his other hand over it, with a purplish-black aura seeping between his grasp. When he opened his hands, there was now a black butterfly with irradiated veins. As the corrupted creature flew to the window, the man prompted with a grin, “Go comfort the boy, my akuma, and evilize him!”

***

       Didier sat with his legs drawn up and his head resting on his knees. Deep, rapid wingbeats brushed his eardrum, and he looked towards it. There was a dark shape, like a hole in the air, moving towards him.

       The young man cried out and backed against the tree. He flailed his squirt gun and pulled the trigger. The torrent of water shot through the air, but the akuma flittered out of the way, circling around the water. Finally, the akuma landed on the squirt gun, and its body sunk into the object, leaving a purple stain. Didier suddenly went quiet, his body going limp.
Almost mechanically, he lifted his head, with shadows around his eyes and a presence in his mind. A man’s voice rung from within, speaking smoothly, “Régresser, I am Hawkmoth. I couldn’t help but notice your predicament. It really isn’t fair, is it? Others lording their will over you just because they’re older. But I can help you change that. Now, you can turn the tables. All that I ask is for Ladybug and Chat Noir’s Miraculous in exchange. What would you say to that?”

       A grin spread over the young man’s face, and he answered in a low growl, “I’ll do it.”

       Didier got to his feet. A bubbling, glowing black wave spread from his squirt gun, enveloping his body.

       Meanwhile, the dark-haired boy from the group walked over to the tree that Didier had hid behind. He paused and called out, “Didier? You there? Listen…sorry about earlier. We weren’t trying to seem mean. But listen, Chauncey’s mom brought over some swimsuits. We can change our clothes and play with your new present now!”

       “Okay…” came a low-toned but smiling response. His friend’s smile slowly dropped, a red flag in the back of his mind. The foot of a green jumpsuit stepped into view. The figure had a dark green domino mask and a smirk on his lighter green face.  Régresser pointed his green gun towards his friend. He finished and pulled the trigger, “Let’s play.”

***

       “Dear?” a man called from the living room, with a concerned tinge. This was enough for Sabine to pause cleaning dishes and look over at her husband.

       “What’s wrong, Tom?” she asked, moving over to his side. She followed his worried gaze over to the TV. He then turned up the volume to the urgent news report.

       On the screen, Nadja Chamack stated, “Police suspect that a new villain is loose. The villain’s goal and abilities are yet to be known. However, several Parisans have seemingly gone missing.”

       “Oh no…” Sabine put her hand on Tom’s shoulder, and murmured, “That’s terrible!”

       All the while, their daughter had crept halfway down the stairs, listening to them and the TV.

       “It’ll be alright.” Tom put his hand over Sabine’s, assuring, “Ladybug and Chat Noir’ll handle things. Just like they always do.”

       Sabine managed a smile and held his hand. Meanwhile, the girl wordlessly moved back up the stairs, disappearing into her room. A moment later, a pink flash slipped through the cracks.

***

       A large, flat screen TV in a broad room, filled with arcade machines and trophies, echoed the same news report. From the bathroom door, where steamy air exited, a young man, freshly clothed, dried off his hair. He paused as he overheard Natasha state, “Police have been unable to stop the new villain, now identified as Régresser. Parisans are heavily advised to stay indoors. For now, all we can do is wait for the arrival of Paris’ vigilantes, Ladybug and Chat Noir.”

       As Nadja continued, the young man disappeared back into the restroom. After he shut the door behind him, there was a green flash from inside.

***

       The sun started to lower from its highest point. There was a metallic whir of the yoyo string as it wrapped around a chimney two-stories up. When the string went taut, Ladybug was swiftly pulled up onto the roof, where a group of pigeons immediately scattered. When she landed, her eyes immediately scanned the street below. She caught sight of a white-and-green male figure hopping atop a parked car. From the side, she heard another male shout, “End of the line, Régresser!”

       Chat Noir landed on the street, a few meters from the young man, who turned to face him with a growl. The villain looked to be only a little younger than the hero. Régresser pointed his green, orb-like pistol at Chat Noir and fired several glowing beams at him. Chat Noir rapidly spun his metal baton in front of himself, cutting up the shots before they could hit.

       All the while, Ladybug retracted her yo-yo back into her hand before stretching it straight overhead, calling out, “Lucky Charm!

       The red-and-black-dotted yoyo spun in the air and emitted a wave of gleaming ladybugs. The swarm swirled back together and collided in a flash of light. A small jar, with a ladybug pattern on the top, materialized and landed in her hands. Ladybug made a confused noise and inspected the item, “A jar of…grape jelly? What am I supposed to do with this?”

       Régresser paused shooting, with flashing lights out of the corner of his eye. He saw Ladybug on the roof, looking over the jar. Hurriedly approaching footsteps brought his attention back to Chat Noir, who lunged for Régresser with a yell. Régresser quickly stepped to the side and grabbed a hold of Chat Noir’s rod. Chat Noir felt his weapon get yanked out of his grasp as he sailed past Régresser with a cry.

       Régresser then tossed the rod away and turned back to Ladybug, who looked over at the sound of Chat Noir crashing into the sidewalk. He saw her enter a readied stance, spinning her yoyo in one hand and holding the jar in the other. A rumbling engine then caught his attention. A bus was passing in-between them. He smiled victoriously and fired a glowing shot through an opened window.

       Ladybug saw a green beam strike the bus driver, who seemed to disappear in his seat. To her horror, the bus continued to move, straight towards oncoming traffic. She dropped down to the street and threw her yoyo in the bus’s path, making a web between two streetlamps. The bus was caught and the wire creaked as it strained under the pressure. Ultimately, the yoyo string won out, and the bus settled to a stop. Ladybug sighed in relief.

       “You’re finished, Ladybug!” Régresser shouted, now standing on top of the bus. Before Ladybug could retracted her wire, he fired a glowing blast. A black shape leapt in the way, struck instead.

       “Chat Noir!” Ladybug shouted, seeing the light envelope his body as he tumbled behind a bench. She immediately turned her attention back to Régresser, baring her teeth before her eyes popped open with realization. Ladybug then pulled the top off of the jelly jar.

       With a laugh, Régresser pointed his gun at Ladybug. She threw the jar straight towards him. There was a sucking squelch as the jar landed directly over the gun, burying the barrel deep in grape jam. Régresser was caught off guard. He attempted to pull the jar off but it wouldn’t budge.
“Give it up! Your gun is jammed!” Ladybug shouted, pulling her yoyo loose.

       “Yeah, for now. But you still have to catch me, and your powers are gonna run out!” Régresser confidently shouted back before leaping from the bus to a roof, where he ran from sight.

       Ladybug gritted her teeth. She turned to where her partner had fallen and called out, “Chat Noir, are you alright?”

       “Uh, yes and…no,” a response in a higher pitch than she expected came from behind the bench.

       Ladybug briefly glanced over to the sound of the bus doors opening, where passengers hurried out onto the street. She caught sight of a panicked child dressed like a bus driver and quickly looked back in Chat Noir’s direction. She urged, “Come on out, we need a plan to catch Régresser.”

       “That could be…difficult,” was the response as a small boy stepped out from behind the bench. The cat-like eyes in the black mask and his leather suit indicated that this boy was Chat Noir. However, the tips of his cat ears now barely reached past her hips. He gave a smile with the words, “Uh, I hope this doesn’t make things awkward.”

       “I-” Ladybug began, until beeping blared in her ears as an unpleasant reminder. She sighed and stated, “I’m going to de-transform soon. I’ll go and feed my kwami. Keep tabs on Régresser’s location, but don’t try fighting him. I’ll then-”

       She was interrupted by Chat Noir groaning, “Actually, I need to go eat too.”

       “What? But you didn’t use-”

       “Not my kwami. Me. I forgot to eat earlier, and I’m really hungry,” he replied, holding his stomach. “I don’t think I’ll be able to chase Régresser like this.”

       “I doubt you could’ve chased him as you are anyways,” Ladybug murmured more to herself.

       “Could you help me get something to eat?” he asked suddenly.

       “Uh-” Her miraculous continued to beep. She started to turn away and replied, “I gotta go. But, I’ll, uh, figure out something. Just– wait here, okay?”

       “I trust you, My Lady,” he responded and ducked back behind the bench. The sound of a child using Chat Noir’s nickname for her caused an uneasy twinge her stomach. She tried to shake the feeling and darted around the corner, hiding behind a building. The continual beeping of her miraculous finally gave way to glittering lights. Her normal dark jacket and pink jeans were revealed from under the spotted suit, and a small, pink form materialized beside her head.

       “What are you going to do, Marinette? Régresser’s still on the loose!” Tikki squeaked worriedly as the mask-less teen searched through her purse.

       “On top of that, I’m all out of food for you.” Marinette made an exasperated groan and leaned against the bricks, “I’ll probably have to run by my house to get more.”

       “What about Chat Noir?” the kwami inquired.

       Marinette peeked around the corner. A few adults stood around the crying, bus driver-dressed child, with one adult on the phone and the others trying to calm the child. Marinette focused her eyes on the bench where she knew Chat Noir was hiding. She answered, “Well, I can’t just leave him…” Marinette glanced away, eyes flickering. After a moment, she looked to Tikki and finally stated, “I think I have an idea.”

       All the while, Chat Noir had the phone feature to his baton activated. He used the camera function to look at his own, youthful face. His large eyes narrowed worriedly.

       “Chat Noir?” a girl called, causing his leathery ears to perk up. He put away his baton and peaked past the bench as she continued, “Um, Ladybug sent me. She said you needed help?”

       “Ah, I thought I recognized that voice,” Chat Noir responded and stepped out into view, with a bow, “It’s good to see you again, Princess.”

       “Oh! Wow,” Marinette acted surprised, though she was still having trouble adjusting. She pointed to him, continuing, “Um, you look- different.”

       “Just an effect from the latest villain. Nothing that this cat can’t handle.” He took her hand in his own, and stated, “Despite my appearance, I’m still the damsel-saving hero, Chat Noir.”

       He then kissed the back of her hand, and a giggle involuntarily bubbled out of Marinette. She tried to stifle her laughter, replying, “Sorry. You just seem more like a…Chaton Noir right now.”

       At this, he let go of her hand and cleared his throat. Chat Noir then tried to change the subject, “S-so, Ladybug explained the situation?”

       “Oh, uh, yes. Since my parents run a bakery, I can help you get food,” Marinette answered.

       “Sounds good! I’ll get us there in no time,” Chat Noir replied and flashed a grin. He drew out his metal stick and instinctively tried to wrap his arm around Marinette with his other arm. However, Chat Noir quickly realized that, at his size, he was only able to hold her leg. “Uh-” He let go of her and put away his stick, “Or we could just go on foot.”

       He added, “We better hurry though” before running down the sidewalk, with Marinette running alongside him. However, Chat Noir notably lagged behind after several minutes. They slowed to a stop, and the child panted, “Yeah, I can’t…move as far like this…really doesn’t help that I’m hungry…”

       Marinette bit her lip, glancing at the distance from her house. Finally, she turned to Chat Noir and stated, “Here, I can carry you. We’ll be able to move faster.”

       She held him by his sides and hoisted him up, wrapping her arms around him in a practiced motion. Marinette continued down the sidewalk, with Chat Noir’s voice in her ear, “I appurreciate this, Princess. Ordinarily, I wouldn’t be carried around like this.”

       “Oh, of course not,” Marinette responded, thinking of several separate occasions she’s had to carry him as Ladybug.

       He continued to ramble more about heroic escapades, which Marinette mostly tuned out and responded to off-handedly. After a few crosswalks, she heard him pipe up, “Oh hey, that new arcade opened up. Maybe we could go there after we eat.”

       “What?” Marinette responded quizzically, “No, you still have a villain to go after.”

       “Oh, right, of course. I’m, uh, not sure what I was thinking…” he replied, trailing off in confusion.

***

       The hanging bell jingled as Marinette entered into the bakery, still holding Chaton Noir. Within a few seconds, her father’s large form poked around the corner. A relieved smile spread under his mustache.

       “Marinette! We were wondering when you’d get home. There’s a villain loose and you weren’t responding to your mother’s texts,” Tom talked as he walked over to her. He paused, seeing the child in her arms. Tom was met with a pair of unnaturally green eyes. The man blinked and inquired, “Um, who’s this?”

       “Uh, this is,” Marinette started unsteadily, eyes darting to the side, as she answered, “…a kid of someone I know! They asked me to watch him for a little bit.”

       “Aren’t you already babysitting Manon?” Tom inquired. Marinette set down Chaton all the while.

       “It’s, uh, only for today,” Marinette assured with a nervous laugh. Chaton sniffed at the air, a hungry look entering his eyes. He stared longingly at the pastries filling the shelves.

       “And, ah, what’s that he’s wearing?” Tom asked, scrunching up his face quizzically.

       “Oh! That! Well, you see, he’s a…huge fan of Chat Noir! So much that I made a costume for him,” Marinette answered.

       Chaton hid his hands behind his back when Tom looked over him again, this time with an impressed nod, “Well, you’ve really outdone yourself then.”

       “Haha, thanks, Papa, but we better head upstairs and everything,” Marinette took Chaton’s hand and led him towards the stairs.

       Marinette soon pushed up the trap door into her room and entered with a sigh. She turned to Chaton, then surprised at the croissant in his other hand. “Where did you-” Marinette plucked the pastry from him. He made an annoyed noise, but she continued to chastise, “Chat Noir, did you take this?”

       “I’m hungry!” he argued, pouting.

       “That’s stealing!” she shot back. Concern washed over her face, and she continued, “What’s gotten into you?”

       His anger dropped upon hearing her tone. Remorsefully, Chaton murmured, “I’m sorry. I think…I’m just really hungry.”

       Marinette responded, sympathetic, “It’s alright. Let me get some food for you. I’ll be right back, okay?”

       “Okay…”

       Marinette swiftly disappeared through the trapdoor. After several minutes, she reappeared with a baguette sandwich. Marinette stiffened, as she came back to see Chaton playing with pens on her desk, but he quickly turned his attention from that and excitedly rushed over to her. She meant to set the food tray on the table, but he took it and simply sat where he stood to eat. He happily bit into a mix of ham and vegetables.
Marinette found herself smiling. Afterwards, she went over to her desk and checked her computer. She scrolled through, noticing repeated links to a news feed from Kids +. When she clicked on one, a video came up with Nadja Chamack nervously staring into the camera.

       “W-we have a very important announcement from here at the Kids + Studio…” the newswoman stuttered.

       “Hello, Paris!” another voice piped up as a green-suited arm pulled the camera to the side. A light green face grinned into the lens, stating, “I, Régresser, will be celebrating my birthday here at the studio, where I’ll have an exclusive viewing of Alien Fighter II. Everyone is invited, including Paris’ local heroes, and I’ll be here with my good friend-” He backed up, revealing André Bourgeois bound to a chair behind him, “The mayor!”

       Régresser added, glaring into the camera, “But if Ladybug and Chat Noir don’t show up at five o’ clock, I’ll turn the mayor into a child.” He smiled and pointed his gun to the side, finishing, “Just like this.”

       He pulled the trigger, resulting in a bright, green flash and Nadja let out a surprised yell. When the light dimmed, a little and fuchsia-haired girl stood with a microphone and oversized reporter’s outfit. She glanced down at herself and back up at Régresser’s cruel smile before she started to cry. Régresser then turned to the camera, which started to back away. He fired his gun past the camera. A man’s yell turned into a child’s and the camera fell forward, cutting to black.

       The feed cut out. Marinette stared at her screen in disbelief. She then leaned back in her chair and ran a hand through her hair.
“Marinette?” the child called out, voice muffled with food. Chaton gulped and asked, “Are you okay?”

       After a moment, she put up a smile and replied, “Yeah, I’m fine. I’m sure Ladybug will take care of everything.”

       Chaton nodded in agreement. He responded, “Of course! Ladybug’s smart and strong and pretty.”

       Marinette smiled bashfully to herself. Chaton looked to her, adding, “You’re pretty too!”

       “Uh-” The girl blushed in surprise. She cleared her throat and replied, “Th-thanks.”
Chaton blinked before realizing what he said. He abruptly continued eating, as if to hide his face with the sandwich. Marinette then got up from her seat and climbed up to her bed, stating, “Uh, wait here. I’m going to, um, get some fresh air on the loft.”

       “Okay,” was the food-filled response.

       The girl stepped into the open air. The sun was still out, though clouds lingered at its edges. Tikki flew out of her purse and circled to a stop by the girl’s downtrodden face.
Marinette started, “I’m not sure what to do, Tikki. I want to go and stop Régresser, but he’ll be expecting Ladybug at the studio.”

       “Maybe you could infiltrate the party as Marinette?” Tikki offered.

       “I would, but Régresser would probably just turn me into a kid…” Marinette sighed and leaned against the railing. After a moment, she lifted her head, suggesting, “Wait. What if I took Chaton with me?”

       “What?” Tikki exclaimed, “But he can’t fight!”

       “But he’s already been turned into a kid, so he’s not at risk from Régresser’s powers,” Marinette responded. “He could distract the villain while I snatch the akuma.”

       Tikki made a sideways frown, not entirely convinced. Marinette faltered and added, “Well…I see if I can come up with anything better. For now, let me make sure he’s doing alright.”

       When Marinette climbed back down onto her bed, she saw a bare spot on the floor where Chaton was once sitting, with a half-eaten sandwich beside it. Marinette gasped and hurried down next to her desk. She called out, “Chat Noir? Where are you?”

       She moved towards the lounge chair across from her and looked behind it. Seeing nothing, she turned around, surveying the rest of her room. Marinette felt a small, clawed hand grab at her ankle. She let out a yelp and jumped away. A giggle came from under the chair. Marinette pursed her lips and ducked down. Glowing green eyes blinked back at her in the dim light. His lower eyelids lifted and his gaze shook as he let out another giggle. He then darted away, climbing on top of the chair. Marinette quickly sat back up, face-to-face with him again. She glared, but he had a terrible time suppressing his laughter.

       “Chat Noir!” Marinette stood and put her hands to her hips, continuing, “What are you doing? You still have to go and help Ladybug!”

       However, he didn’t appear to be paying attention. Marinette pouted and moved from the longue chair, continuing, “At any rate, if you’re done eating, I’m gonna put this food away.”

       Chaton gasped and immediately darted for the tray, protectively snatching up the rest of the sandwich. He hunched over it and declared, “No! I’m not done!”

       “Then finish your meal,” Marinette stated, sharply pointing to the tray. Begrudgingly, Chaton resumed eating, green eyes staring at her moodily. Marinette sat at her desk, watching Chaton sternly. However, a bit of uncertainty swam in her gut, and concern colored her glare.

       After a few minutes, it became apparent that Chaton couldn’t finish the whole sandwich. He let out a yawn and he muttered, “I’m tired…”’

       “Tired? Really?” Marinette moved from her seat to pick up the tray and abandoned sandwich. She got a closer look at the child, and then replied, “…You do look really sleepy.”

       Marinette straightened up and added, “Well, why don’t you take a nap then? The chair over there should be a good spot. Let me know if you need anything, like more pillows.”

       “Okay,” Chaton responded and shuffled across the room, where he hopped onto the longue chair. Marinette then exited with the tray. When she returned, Chaton was gone.

       “Chaton?” Marinette called out, before correcting herself, “I mean, Chat Noir? Where are you?”

       A giddy snort sounded overhead. Marinette looked up towards her bed. She caught a pair of black cat ears disappear behind the ledge. Marinette pouted and climbed the stairs. By the time she reached the bed, the area was seemingly empty. However, the pillows were higher up from the bed than they usually were. She pulled the pillows off, and Chaton looked up in surprise. He let out a squeal and started for the edge of the bed. Marinette caught him, however, and set him back on the bed.

       “Now’s not the time for games!” she berated, quieting him briefly. Marinette went on, “If you’re not tired, then go help Ladybug!”

       “I wanna help Ladybug!” he argued back. He then muttered, “And I am tired. I just can’t sleep.”

       Marinette calmed slightly and sighed, “Well…if you’re going to get any rest, you’ll need to lie down first. Go on, get comfortable.”

       Chaton was prompted into scuttling over to the pillows. Marinette sat on the edge of the bed beside him. After he shuffled onto his side, she gingerly reached over and began petting him. Chaton visibly relaxed and made an approving sigh.

       Marinette paused as the boy turned his head towards her. He then asked, “Marinette, could you tell me a story?”

       “A-a story?” she responded, taken aback. She glanced around searchingly, “A-ah, um. I’m not very good at stories…” She trailed off, seeing a heart-melting plea enter his shining green gaze, and she went on, “But I guess I could try. How’s about, uh, a story about a girl who…has a crush on a boy, but, um, he doesn’t know it?”

       Chaton blinked, and Marinette continued nervously, “The reason is that, you see, she’s very shy. I mean, really shy. She has trouble even saying hello to him. It’s like her tongue ties itself into knots.”

       The child giggled at this. Marinette paused, glancing around for ideas. She noticed one of her shoes on the floor and continued, “So…there’s a big event coming up, like a dance. She loves to sew and gets the idea to make her own dress. As part of the outfit, she wears a mask, hoping that it can help her talk to the boy better. As it turns out, her plan works! The girl is more confident with her face hidden and talks to him no problem. What’s more, the boy is fun and nice to talk to, and he, well, feels the same way talking to her. They spend most of the dance enjoying each other’s company. Towards the end of the dance, the boy finally asks to see her face. However, the girl is still very shy and can’t imagine revealing herself. So she makes an excuse to leave as soon as possible, unknowingly leaving behind part of her dress. Despite her decision, she’s sad about not going through with it, but believes that she doesn’t have the courage to confess. What she doesn’t expect is the boy’s determination to find her again, using the cloth she left behind. And he—”

       Marinette paused, feeling a tiny hand against her leg. Chaton was fast asleep and had reached out to her. She smiled and gently ran her hand over his head. Her own eyelids started to feel heavy.

***

       Régresser tapped his foot as he looked over to a clock on the Kids + stage. It was ten minutes past four. He stamped his foot and caused the mayor to flinch beside him. The boy growled in annoyance, “Where are they? It’s almost time!”

       “Patience, Régresser,” Hawkmoth’s voice filled his head, causing him to pause. The man assured, “You know how these hero-types are about arriving the last minute.”

       After a moment, the boy grinned and stated, “I can’t wait to see the looks on their faces.”

***

       A squeaking voice steadily filled her head, calling, “Marinette…Marinette!”

       The girl opened her eyes with a start, seeing Tikki floating over her head. The kwami urged, “You have get up! It’s almost five!”

       Marinette gasped and began to sit up, but her arm felt weighed down. Chaton was hugging her limb, still fast asleep. She looked back to Tikki and whispered, “Okay, I’ll get ready.”

       Once the kwami zipped back into her purse, Marinette took hold of Chaton’s shoulder and shook gently, calling, “Chaton? Chaton, it’s time to wake up.”

       The child shifted and groaned, cracking open one, glowing green eye. Marinette continued, “You have to go stop Régresser.”

       “I don’t wanna,” Chaton muttered and rolled over.

       “But you’re one of Paris’ heroes!” Marinette insisted, shocked at his response.

       “I don’t wanna,” the boy simply repeated, now muffled by the pillow.

       Marinette huffed. She glanced to the side before stating purposefully, “Don’t you want to help out Ladybug?”

       Chaton’s head snapped up from the pillow. He immediately insisted, “I want to help Ladybug!”

       “Then you need to go to the Kids + studio. She came by when you were asleep wanted you to meet her at the studio,” Marinette responded.

       The boy nodded as he yawned. Chaton rubbed his eyes before hopping off of the bed. Marinette followed him down the ladder, and he crawled under the lounge chair. She curiously watched his belt-tail flick until he drew out his metal baton. When they went to the trapdoor, Marinette felt Chaton’s little fingers wrap around her own. She smiled, and they started down the stairs together.

       Tom and Sabine sat in the living room, where the TV channel fuzzed incoherently. The adults worriedly talked amongst themselves until they heard footsteps.

       Marinette and Chaton were halfway to the door when Tom called, “Marinette? Where are you going?”

       The girl froze. After a brief pause, she began to stutter, “Well, you see, I have to, um-”

       Chaton piped up, “She has to catch me!”

       “…catch you?” Marinette repeated slowly.

       Chaton suddenly broke away from Marinette and bolted out of the door. Marinette grabbed her head and shouted, “To catch him!

       She hurried through the door, cramming a rapid farewell over her shoulder, “GottagoI’llbesafeIpromisebye!”

       Sabine and Tom hardly had the chance to leave their seats before the pair disappeared through the doorway.

       It wasn’t long before the bakery was long behind them as they ran along a sunset flooded street. Chaton laughed breathlessly as he ran, barely hearing Marinette calling his name repeatedly. Finally, the girl caught up to him and pulled him off of his feet, which he responded with a yell of exuberance.

       She exclaimed, “What are you doing? The Kids + studio is the other way!”

       “Oh,” Chaton responded, as if remembering, “Right.”

       Marinette sighed and hurried down the sidewalk, still holding the child. Pigeons cooed in the distance, but the streets were empty. Everyone must’ve moved indoors, Marinette thought. Good, maybe that’ll lessen the number of Régresser’s victims.

       She broke from her thoughts as Chaton batted at her pigtail ribbons, giggling to himself. Her stomach sunk. Is he really going to be okay? Marinette strengthened her grip around him and gritted her teeth behind her lips. I don’t have any other options. I need his help to stop Régresser. Chaton returned what he thought was a hug.

       The Kids + Studio finally came into view, and it was a bright orange pillar from the sun reflecting off the windows. Silent police cars and barricades sat around the doors. Some lights still flashed, but all the vehicles were empty. Marinette finally set down Chaton and held his hand as she led him towards the barricades.

       “Alright, Ladybug said for you to go to lobby to find her. She said she’d give you the rundown of the plan then,” Marinette explained.

       “Mm,” Chaton grunted half-mindedly.

       “Just follow what Ladybug says and you’ll be fine,” Marinette assured. She then moved to separate from Chaton, but he didn’t let go of her hand. The girl inquired, “Chaton? What’s wrong?”

       “Will you…” the boy murmured, striking her with its seeping sadness, “…still be here after I go? I don’t wanna…be alone.”

       His words tugged at her heart. Marinette knelt down, trying to reassure him, “You won’t be. I promise that Ladybug will meet you inside.” The boy’s eyes were still downcast, causing her to pause. After a moment, Marinette gently turned his chin towards her and added softly, “Listen…just because you can’t see me doesn’t me that I won’t be around. I’ll just be cheering you on from the sidelines. Isn’t that right, Chaton?”

       She smiled. His face brightened, and he answered confidently, “Right!”

       “Are you ready to go?” she asked.

       He nodded, his eyes gleaming with excited energy. Marinette then helped Chaton over the barricade. He drew out his baton, sucked in a breath and scurried to the building. The boy paused halfway through the door, looking back at her. She gave him a pair of thumbs-up. Chaton smiled and slipped inside.

       Marinette bolted for an alley the moment the child disappeared from view. She muttered hurriedly, “Come-on-spots-on-spots-on!”

***

       Chaton carefully picked his way through the empty lobby. His leather ears twitched, mostly at the sound of his own, tiny footsteps. He noticed a green figure out of the corner of his eye and immediately turned with a cry. Chaton pointed his baton at a cardboard cut-out of a man in a green-full body suit with a green, ray gun in his hand. He stood on the title, ALIEN FIGHTER II.

       “Would you call that a cat scare or a kitten scare?” Ladybug joked. Chaton perked up and rushed over to her by the door. She tried to keep her breathing even and panted discreetly. Ladybug then asked, “Ready to go?”

       “Yeah! We’re gonna beat Régresser!” Chaton cheered.

       She smiled and responded, “We’ll need to find him first.” Ladybug continued as she started across the lobby, “Come on, I’ll explain the plan along the way.”

***

       André Bourgeois jumped in his restraints when Régresser slammed a foot in front of him. The boy pointed the gun in his face, stating, “It’s five o’clock, and Ladybug hasn’t shown yet. I don’t want to wait to start my premiere of Alien Fighter II so I’m gonna go ahead and regress you.”

       “B-but how can I run for mayor as a child?” André stuttered, shaking eyes focused on the spout-like barrel of the gun.

       “You’re right,” Régresser responded with a widened smile. He put the gun closer, “Maybe I can be mayor when I’m the oldest person in Paris.”

       “Didier!” a woman cried out.

       Régresser turned with a glower. His mother stood in the doorway, panting heavily. She stumbled across the room, moving past hiding children, many of which wore police uniforms. Her voice bounced breathlessly off of the walls, “Didier, please, whatever reason you’re doing this, it’s not worth all this trouble-”

       “I’m not Didier!” Régresser snapped. He then snarled, stepping towards the woman, “I am Régresser!”

       She halted, as if struck. He continued, his voice boiling, “And I’m sick of being told what to do by people older than me! It’s not fair! It’s never fair!”

       Régresser then grinned cruelly, adding, “That’s why I’m gonna give everyone a taste of their own medicine. Then, I’ll get to tell everyone else what to do.”

       The mother stared in shock. She called out, “Didier, this isn’t like you! Please, stop!”

       “You don’t get to tell me what to do anymore!” he shouted and fired his gun. The beam hit the woman, shrinking her down. The little girl then stared between herself and him in fear and confusion. Her eyes watered and sobs bubbled from her quivering lips.

       A young boy yelled, “Hey! Quit making kids cry, you…you big meanie!”

       Régresser grinned at the sight of Chaton in the doorway. The former taunted the child, “Well, well, look who showed up. How do you enjoy reliving your kittenhood, Chat Noir?”

       Chaton answered with a glare and charged with his baton. Régresser laughed, “You think that’s going to work?”

       He fired his gun, forcing Chaton break his sprint and jump out of the blast’s way. The child stumbled but had to scramble away again as Régresser fired another shot. The villain laughed when Chaton tripped and fell onto his stomach, “You don’t stand a chance, kitten! Where’s Ladybug to help you? Was she too scared to come? Or is she…behind me?”

       Régresser turned around, catching sight of Ladybug on top of catwalk with her yoyo upraised. He shouted as he fired beams, “An ambush? Please. It’s like you took a page from Alien Fighter!”

       Ladybug spun her yoyo to deflect the first shot, jumped back from the second and moved back again from the third. However, she slipped from the ledge, barely managing to catch herself on the metal bars. Unfortunately, it left her open for another attack.

       “Leave Ladybug alone!” Chaton cried and threw his baton. The metal stick whistled through the air before it struck Régresser’s shoulder, forcing him to draw back in pain.

       There’s not enough time to climb up and hit him, Ladybug realized as Régresser started to recover. She swung her legs back and forth before letting go of the catwalk. Ladybug tumbled across the ground, onto her feet. Régresser fired a blast at her, but she hurried behind a large speaker. He growled and then fire another round at Chaton, who turned to run too late.

       The child’s cry froze Ladybug. Her gaze snapped over, seeing Chaton tightened into a ball on the ground. He shakily unfurled, and tears streamed over his face, which twisted with pain. Ladybug’s shoulders dropped as the realization tumbled from her lips, “No, I thought…I let this happen. I thought I could handle it on my own but…”

       The child pushed himself up and turned his watery gaze to her. Ladybug gritted her teeth and darted from the speaker, protectively spinning her yoyo beside her. Régresser immediately shot at her, though his beams were deflected by her yoyo. Ladybug quickly scooped up Chaton and escaped back behind the speaker.

       “Are you alright?” she breathlessly asked.

       The child held his chest and answered in a murmur, “It hurts but…I’m okay…”

       “I’m sorry that this happened,” Ladybug apologized, eyes downcast.

       Surprised at seeing her unhappy, Chaton insisted and smeared his tears in an attempt to wipe them off, “I’m okay! Really!” He grabbed her hand, adding, “Please don’t be sad.”

       Ladybug blinked. Finally, she patted his head, answering with a smile, “How could I be when I’m with you?”

       He brightened. She then glanced in the direction of Régresser, murmuring, “We can’t let our guard down yet. We still have an akuma to catch.”

       “How are we gonna get it?” Chaton asked.

       “That’s what I’m going to figure out,” Ladybug answered. She flung her yoyo upward, proclaiming, “Lucky Charm!

       Waves of ladybugs poured from her twirling yoyo. The flittering streams then swirled together, creating a large flash. In place of the light, there was a red-and-black-spotted, cone-shaped horn with a handle. It landed in her hand, only as big as her palm. She looked over it quizzically and wondered aloud, “A mini-megaphone? What do I do with this?”

       Ladybug’s gaze darted around. Through a grey lens, she focused past recording equipment towards clusters of hiding children, who flashed red-and-black. Her eyes then went to Chaton and finally the little megaphone. She smiled in understanding, “I got it!”

       Ladybug handed the megaphone to Chaton, who scrunched his face as he held it up to his face. He wondered, “What’s this for?”

       She dropped to one knee and put a hand to his shoulder, explaining, “You can rally the other kids. They’ll listen to you.”

       “What are you going to do?”

       “I’ll be the distraction this time, and I won’t let you get hurt,” she responded confidently. Chaton’s eyes lit up in that moment.

       “I’m not gonna let you get hurt either!” he responded with equal self-assurance.

       Régresser stood readily beside the mayor, his eyes shifting around for any red or black figures. Ladybug suddenly leapt on top of the speaker. He quickly fired several shots at her, though her yoyo already spun in front of her, blocking the beams. Ladybug hit one blast back towards Régresser, who jumped out of the way. The mayor yelped as it struck the ground beside him. All the while, Ladybug took the chance to leapt onto a different speaker and resume spinning her yoyo. Régresser continued to bear down on her with a volley of green beams. A black shape moved out of the corner of his eye.

       The high-pitch whine of a megaphone rippled through the air, followed by Chaton’s reinforced call, “Everyone listen! Régresser’s just some bully! But there’s only one of him and a bunch of us!”

       A single blast slipped past Ladybug’s yoyo, nearly grazing her ear. She gasped and forced her burning arm to twirl the string more.

       Large and curious gazes steadily emerged from their hiding places as Chaton continued, “It doesn’t matter how old or big he is, he can’t beat all of us at once! We can win if we stop him together! Come on!”

       Chaton watched the clusters tensely until a boy in an oversized, police uniform ran over to his side. Like a growing tide, other children gradually followed, and they soon ran after Chaton as a rushing herd.

       Régresser paused from firing at Ladybug, hearing a sound like tiny thunder. He made a horrified choke at seeing the oncoming swarm of children. He fruitlessly took a step back, stuttering, “Why are you—I-I’m bigger than you! You can’t—y-you-”

       The children, all yelling in unison, charged into him with their arms upraised. Régresser attempted to fire his gun more, but he was pulled down into the crowd with a cry. Ladybug jumped down from the speaker, hardly able to see Régresser through the waving arms and children dog-piling on top of him. Chaton broke away from the group, carrying Régresser’s gun above his head. Excitedly, he held out the weapon to Ladybug. She accepted it and patted his head, smiling back, “Thank you, Chaton.”

       He smiled proudly, eyes gleaming.

       Ladybug then turned and snapped the gun in half across her knee. She tossed both pieces to the ground, shouting, “Get out here, you nasty bug!”

       A purple-stained akuma slipped from the cracked halves and started to flutter away. Ladybug swiped her finger across her yoyo, so it opened like a beetle’s back and glowed pink. She swung her yoyo, spinning it behind her before lunging it forward as she shouted, “Time to de-evilize!”

       The glowing yoyo snatched up akuma. She snapped the yoyo back into her hand and declared, “Gotcha!”

       Ladybug then tapped the yoyo to open it. A white butterfly floated out, with Ladybug calling after it, “Bye-bye, little butterfly.”

       After getting the megaphone from Chaton, she tossed it upward, shouting, “Miraculous Ladybugs!”

       The megaphone exploded into a waves of glittering ladybugs. They rushed over the crowd of children, who each returned to their adult states. The ladybugs swirled over Chaton, leaving behind Chat Noir, who looked over his hands in joy. Régresser, no longer pinned by children, was on his hands and knees. A purple aura receded down his body, returning the young man to his normal state. Didier sat up and murmured as he looked around, “What happened?”

       His mother ran over and pulled him into a hug. He blinked before returning the gesture.

       Chat Noir, all the while, had approached Ladybug. They connected their fists, celebrating, “Pound it!”

       The restored policemen, aside from one who found that his helmet was backwards, soon set to work in escorting out the citizens, unbinding the mayor and checking Didier. At the same time, Chat Noir inquired playfully, “So, I’m pretty cute as a kid, right? Of course, it’s nothing compared to how I look now, wouldn’t you agree?” He flexed as he finished his sentence.

       “Maybe I’ll answer that when you’re older,” Ladybug responded jokingly.

       “Aw, come on. Is that all you have to say after all this?” Chat Noir persisted.

       “Well, I’d say you weren’t half bad, Chaton,” she answered, lightly poking his nose. He blinked before a smile spread over his face.

       Ladybug’s earrings made blinking beeps. She put a hand to her ear, and stated, “I have to get going. Do you mind sorting out things here?”

       Chat Noir dipped into a regal bow, answering, “As you wish, My Lady.”

       Ladybug waved her hand in farewell before bolting off, disappearing into the hall.

***

       Papery wingbeats barely drowned out the man’s growl and his glove’s strain from his clenched fist. Hawkmoth snarled, “I was so close, so close!

       His hands shook and his body trembled. However, his shoulders begrudgingly straightened, and he leered at the window, just as the shutters steadily blocked out the light. Hawkmoth’s voice tolled like a heavy bell, “But any celebration of theirs is premature. I’ll strike again, and I will only get closer to finally claiming their Miraculous.”

***

       Marinette peered from alleyway, over at the Kids + Studio. Tikki’s pink head poked out from behind her pigtail, and she inquired, “What’s going on, Marinette? Aren’t you going to head home?”

       “I will, I just want to tie up one last loose end,” Marinette answered, watching the building’s entrance. When a black figure finally slipped out, she made her way towards the barricades.

       “Thanks again for your help,” Officer Roger stated, adjusting his cap.

       “Oh, no trouble at all,” Chat Noir responded. His eyes flickered over when he noticed the dark-haired girl standing patiently at the sidewalk. She waved in acknowledgment. He looked back to the head officer, continuing to say, “But, the life of a hero is a busy one, so I must be on my way. Good work today!”

       With that, Chat Noir finally slid out of the conversation and leapt over the barricade, landing in front of Marinette.

       “Why, hello, Princess. Were you waiting for me?” he greeted inquiringly.

       “Well, yes, actually.” She answered, “I was thinking about what you said earlier and thought it’d be best if I stuck around.”

       “I…” Chat Noir faltered with surprise. After a moment, he finished in a significantly softer tone, “really appreciate that.”

       He continued, steadily regaining his energy, “I mean, I hope I didn’t worry you. I think that was all a part of being turned into a kid. Oh! Just don’t let Ladybug know, alright? I’d rather if she didn’t hear about all my childish escapades.”

       Marinette giggled and playfully poked his nose, responding, “It’ll be our little secret, Chaton.”

       Chat Noir blinked and smiled. He drew his metal stick from his belt and stated, “I hate to cut our chat short but there’s work to be done and I’m not getting any younger. This time.” He winked, “Farewell for now, Princess!”

       With a click of a side button, the rod extended into a pole, pushing him onto a rooftop. When he retracted the staff, Chat Noir then leapt onto the next roof, fading into a silhouette on the orange-bathed rooftops. Marinette watched him go with a smile. She turned and started back home, glancing at Tikki’s proud face poking out of her purse.
Purrs Like a Kitten

For whatever reason, the mayor has a bad habit of getting kidnapped in my stories.

But, more importantly, this was a fun and interesting piece to write. I hadn't really heard of other Miraculous fanfics that involved one of the heroes getting turned into a kid. The story turned out a lot less humor-based than I was expecting, but I hope that you've enjoyed reading regardless.

Loading...
The Graceful Assassin finds something he is not meant to; a secret section to the library. In his haste to take advantage of the situation, he neglected the fact that rules drastically change when one enters the territory of another.
~

       The clunking of black boots echoed through the endless white halls. There was also the swishing of a black coat against black pants, as well as the small chinking of the silver drawstrings against each other. Shoulder-length, pink hair brushed against the rim of the lowered hood, and the man continued down the corridor.

       Silence soon spoke as he stopped in front of a pair of white doors. He opened them with his black gloved hands and entered a vast room filled with shelves that nearly touched the ceiling; each shelf was packed with heavy but featureless, hard-covered books.

       Marluxia scanned the library thoughtfully. He recalled how Larxene would commonly escape here and then reappear with a book to read as she lounged on the couch in the Grey Area. It would allow the other member’s a break from her biting comments. He decided it was time to explore this room he hardly visited. It’s quiet and peaceful, Marluxia thought as he took a few steps in. But much too life-less. It is too quiet. Dead.

       The smell of paper and ink was hardly thrilling to him. Much unlike a garden, he felt bored and foreign in a library. But he knew that with books, what was important were the words and message. Books were ideas and thoughts from one’s head to pen on paper for another to read, to share.

       Of course, he thought with a smirk. The idea and the thoughts are only alive within the mind. A plant, however, is a being, a living thing. They are creatures, and exist of their own. Books are only mere imagination and words that alive through others.

       Marluxia continued into the room, where he saw white tables with white chairs that were neatly lined up with the shelves standing all around them. The tables were all bare, and all the more life-less to him. Marluxia pursed his lips and put a hand on the corner of a table. But I’m not here for these books. His eyes slid over his shoulder and scanned the library for any others. Seeing no one, he moved past the aisles, reaching the back wall. He checked the closed entrance once more before turning back to the wall and holding out his hand.

      Glowing rose petals drifted from his coat sleeve and spread across the wall. Their placid flight was cut off as the petals were caught by an invisible force. They scraped against the wall in a pair of lines, which connected into a doorway-shape. Marluxia smirked and pushed at the wall. The rose petals were sucked into the doorway outline. There was a click, and the petals fell free as the panel slid open.

      The room he entered was narrow, with the walls on either side of him sitting very far apart. Electronic light pulsed along circuity-like lines that spread from the floor to the ceiling. A computer bearing the Nobody symbol was built into the wall. Round bulbs acted like artificial torches in between dark brown shelves that clashed with the room’s theme. Old, wrinkled documents written in cursive ink were spread out in front of rows of thick and cracked volumes. He glanced over the collection with the thought, No doubt research that the founding members’ carried over from their past lives. He made a step towards the computer, but noticed someone sitting at the table beside it. Marluxia froze.

       A smaller figure in a black coat, a young man, had a book open. With periwinkle bangs sprawled over the right side of his face, his hard blue eyes slid over to Marluxia. The latter’s mind was racing. Zexion, the lowest of the founders. He inwardly panicked. How long was he in here? His own eye caught onto the rose petals scattered on the floor. They made a trail leading to where the young man sat. Marluxia’s shoulders relaxed. He more confidently met Zexion’s gaze. He entered right after I did, but he used his illusions to make it seem like he was already here.

       Marluxia flicked his hair over his shoulder, stating in a purr, “My, this is quite the collection. Odd how it’s hidden away like this.”

       “That would be because this is a restricted area,” Zexion retorted evenly. He closed his lexicon with a soft clap and added, “Which makes it strange that you would make an abnormal visit to the library and break into a concealed entrance so straight-forwardly.”

        He must’ve followed my scent too, Marluxia thought, tension in his gut. I won’t be able to write it off as an accident as well as I had hoped. The man sucked in a breath and exhaled before smiling. His eyes went to the books as he replied calmly, “I will admit. I was curious.”

       “Pray tell of what exactly?” Zexion inquired, weighing his gaze on Marluxia.

       The man looked back, as if surprised by this question, “Why, wouldn’t you, if you felt that you were being kept in the dark by your higher-ranking comrades?”

       Zexion turned his head and cupped his chin, replying, “Indeed, it can be unnerving for leaders of a group to seemingly keep secrets from their comrades.” The younger man pointedly finished, “Though, I’m sure the same applies when any member of the group appears to act suspiciously. That is precisely why trust despite such doubts is a key foundation within an association in order for all parts to unify towards a common goal.”

       Marluxia chuckled lightly in response, “You sound as though you might accuse me of disloyalty towards the Organization. Quite the opposite. I simply believe that it is a matter of miscommunication.”

       Zexion lifted his chin slightly, “…Is that so?”

       “I’ve noticed a bit of a trend since my recruitment,” Marluxia explained, hooking a finger over his chin, “The founding members, naturally, direct the organization, passing along assignments and objectives. However, lower members are hardly allowed any opportunity to provide input. I believe that this may be limiting the Organization’s potential and growth.” Marluxia stepped forward, a low edge entering his voice, “The current system is incredibly rigid and leaves little room for development. Much like with a garden, the best results come with rotation. Rearranging the hierarchy may refresh the group’s quality.”

       “Your words are dipping dangerously close towards insubordination, Marluxia,” Zexion cut in, becoming rigid.

       “But this is exactly the kind of thinking that has been hindering the Organization,” the man replied, slowly striding towards the other member. He came between Zexion and the door, with the rose petals sliding across the floor, “I simply want to share my opinion with you, in the hopes of inspiring a productive change-”

       The lights flickered.

       Zexion had gotten to his feet, hand on his now-opened lexicon. His eyes were alert and locked onto Marluxia, who came to a stop. The younger man spoke in a low tone, “I’ll say this now. You have not yet made any overt action or statement to have you accused of treason. However, engaging me in any aggressive manner would not only jumpstart any sort of punishment along those lines…”

       The lights dimmed as Zexion’s eye grew brighter, the shadows growing around him. Papery hissing stirred beside Marluxia as the books blew open, rapidly turning through the pages. His voice buzzed with magic as he finished, “…but it would also be a very unwise decision.”

       Marluxia’s smile dropped to a reserved expression. He slowly responded, “Of course…it would be foolish of me to ignore the advice of a higher ranking member.”

       The pages steadily hushed, as if falling back to sleep. Zexion’s appearance shifted back to normal, though his palm remained on the opened lexicon. Marluxia turned and moved out of the doorway. His lips curled into a snarl the moment his face was no longer in view.

       This organization is destined to wither, his thoughts burned. And I will be the one to shear the unsightly weeds from my rightful garden of power.
Territorial Warnings: Thorns and Pages
Nothing like a pair of pretty villains having a wordy confrontation.

The original version of this story was posted 2013 on Fanfiction.Net. I bring this up, only because I made some pretty massive tweaks to the writing. The overall story and resolution is intact, but I improved the dialogue and inciting incident. Though, I suppose this really doesn't mean much to people that haven't read the original version. Either way, I'm much more satisfied with this version and I hope you've enjoyed it as well!
Loading...
A faint whiff of the sweet and salty mixture is enough to stir the heavily repressed regrets and doubts of the most loyal of Organization XIII. Much like the ice cream, those pleasant memories leave a bittersweet aftertaste.
~

       The sunset rested across the clock tower and sloping rooftops. At the same time, cooled shadows nestled in alleys and in-between the cobblestone streets. The whistle and rumble of a distant train lazily traveled through the yellow skies, which steadily faded into pink and ember. But those listening to the sleeping afternoon may not have heard the lowered voices exchanged under the veil of darkness.

       “Despite their bestial behavior, Heartless can be very picky about where they congregate. It is more likely to locate Heartless in areas that most lack any form of light, whether natural or artificial. Can you think of an area within this town that best fits that description?” prompted a young man with periwinkle hair covering the right side of his face. His sharp blue gaze observed the younger, blond boy standing in front of him.

       The other boy shifted his own blue gaze towards the ground, and he responded after a long moment, “The shopping district is pretty dark because it’s closed at this hour.”

       “Very good. And?”

       Roxas blinked in surprise. His eyes shifted searchingly as he made a longer pause. He answered unsurely, “There’s…the woods in front of the old mansion.”

       “As well as the Underground Concourse and pockets of back alleys much like the one we are currently situated in,” Zexion added, tipping up his chin. He continued, “You must be thorough when tracking Heartless, especially those that are stronger and more unique. You do have an advantage in that Heartless will be naturally attracted to the power of your Keyblade. However, that is not to say that you should rely on that factor alone.”

       “I understand…” Roxas replied, eyes dropping to the ground.

       “Now, regarding the strategy for hunting Heartless, there are numerous ways, but I would of course recommend the most efficient one. This will involve scouting around areas appealing to Heartless, dispatching any as you find them, while bearing in…mind…” Zexion trailed off, catching a scent. He was struck by sweet salt. A familiar voice filled his head.

Come now, Ienzo. What is a lover of science without a sense of curiosity?

       The older Organization member turned, eyes towards the street. Roxas watched in puzzlement and followed his gaze. There seemed to be no one until a mother and child walked by, each holding light blue popsicles.


You are free to dislike it if you may, but I believe one earns their opinion through experience. Even when it comes to ice cream.

       Zexion slowly blinked, as if waking up. He turned back to Roxas, clearing his throat and speaking coolly, “Please excuse the interruption. I had taken notice of something…”

       “Should we investigate?” Roxas suggested.

       “The mission at hand remains a priority,” Zexion answered briskly. He paused and added slowly, “Though I suppose...it would work just as well for you to proceed with the mission as you were and so I…may be able to pursue the matter without putting the objective at risk.”

       “So I should…act as if I’m on a solo-mission?” Roxas inquired.

       “Yes, only for now. I will regroup with you once the investigation is complete,” Zexion stated. Roxas was unnerved by the young man’s sense of urgency but said nothing. The boy nodded, and Zexion added, pulling up his hood, “Before you go, remember to be thorough with hunting Heartless, even after your objective is complete.”

       “Understood,” Roxas replied.

       When the two separated, the boy thought to himself, <i?I’ve never seen Zexion like this. It’s weird like something’s…making him nervous.</i>

       With a flash of light, he summoned his key-shaped blade, with twitching shadows and their glowing, beady eyes gathering in front of him. Maybe I should just get this mission over with quick, then I won’t need to think about it anymore.

--

       The shop owner paused from wiping off the counter as a boy approached him. The teenager was stout, with a red shirt reading ‘DOGSTREET’ and had a black hairband holding up his brown hair. The shop owner smiled as he greeted, “Well, what can I do you for, Pence?”

       “Just one sea-salt ice cream, please,” the boy responded, returning the smile. He also drew out a handful of golden munny.

       “Sure thing! Nothing better to beat back the heat.” Moments later, the boy accepted the cooled stick of blue ice cream.

       “Thank you very much,” the boy stated.

       “Always a pleasure. You take care now!”

       “Have a nice day!” he called over his shoulder as he walked off with the ice cream. He proceeded around the corner of a closed jewelry shop before his smile dropped.

       The boy leaned against the shaded wall, and sighed, “What am I doing?”

       His appearance reverted to a taller figure in a hooded, black coat. Zexion looked over the ice cream in his gloved hand, and its sugary odor lifted into his nostrils. His mind started to drift.

-

       He held a pen in his small hand, with carefully and surprisingly dexterous sentences scrawled out on the journal before him. A warm voice rung behind him, “Ienzo, there you are.”

       The child turned towards the doorway, occupied by a broad-shouldered man with blond hair and a red scarf over his lab coat. He held up a pair of blue ice creams, prompting, “I see you’re hard at work writing your reports as Even asked. I don’t mean to interrupt, but I’ve a bit of a dilemma. I seem to have acquired one too many of an ice cream that you just so happen to like and there’s no one to share it with. Perhaps you may be able to assist, and I can in turn lend an ear to a verbal rendition of your report?” Ansem paused, his mouth flicking up in a knowing smile framed by his goatee.

       The child set down his pen and hopped from his chair. He accepted the sea-salt ice cream and then slipped his hand into the man’s now freed grasp. Ansem gave a gentle squeeze as they proceeded down the hall together.

-

       “A laboratory? Here?” Ansem repeated, concern etched in his ember eyes.

       The child nodded. The man closed his mouth, and he furrowed his eyebrows, leaning back in his chair. He put a hand to his chin, murmuring, “I suppose that building it beneath the castle would be the best way to ensure that whatever is conducted there would be contained. But would such a thing really be necessary? I’m aware of how the other apprentices have wished for a greater space to work in, but I worry that increasing the magnitude of the workspace may allow for more ambitious and more unstable experiments-”

       Ansem cut himself off, feeling a pair of small hands over his own. The child stood by his side and looked up at him wordlessly. The man stared back until his expression melted into a bittersweet smile. Ansem sighed and patted the child’s hands, “Perhaps I have become more easily panicked as of late. Especially since the tests on Xehanort’s heart. Still, I acknowledge that risks come with the pursuit of knowledge.”

       The man looked to the window, stating definitively, “Very well then. I will allow this decision, so long as boundaries are set in place. Thinking of it, I have always wanted to ensure creative freedom, in the hopes that you all would be able to find solutions to problems that I would have never considered. I trust my apprentices to do what they believe is good for all.”

-

       “Come on, kid. You’re not gonna back out of this now, are you?” a man with an eyepatch questioned they stood in front of a mechanical capsule.

       The child looked to the ground, but his gaze snapped up when Braig dropped a hand on his shoulders, continuing, “You’ve seen what we’ve been able to accomplish so far, and we’ve barely scratched the surface. Just imagine how much more there is to discover. But if Ansem learns about this, he’ll pull the plug, and then our work’ll never be complete! He’s scared of the darkness, as he should be. But here’s the thing…if you wanna control the darkness, you can’t fear it. You have to embrace it, learn from it…Doesn’t that sound about right?”

       The child shifted his gaze to the side. A long moment later, he finally stepped forward with the other apprentices.

-

       “W-what is the meaning of this?” a man with blond hair past his shoulders nervously faltered. He stood in the middle of the computer room, behind the child. The latter stared at the white-haired man in a lab coat standing silently in the doorway. Even went on unsteadily, “Apprentice Xehanort, there’s still more tests left to be done. Surely it isn’t time for us to skip to as drastic of measures as you’ve proposed. Th-there simply must be another way to access the darkness-”

       He was cut off as Xehanort summoned a dark, key-shaped blade and dashed forward. Even cried out in terror as the weapon stabbed into the child’s chest, connecting with light and smoking blackness.

Rrrmrrrmrrmrrm


       An empty, automated tram rumble past Zexion. He was still in Twilight Town. The young man exhaled, becoming aware of the tension in his body. Zexion looked to the stick of sea-salt ice cream still in his hand. The sweet and salty smell clumped into the back of his throat. He pursed his lips and tossed the ice cream into a trash can, muttering, “This was pointless. I have work to attend to.”

---

       “Ienzo, have you managed to find the remaining pages concerning Experiment C52?” Even inquired, standing before a disorganized bookshelf.

       The young man paused sorting Ansem’s desk. How peculiar of a feeling, he thought to himself, looking over the lab coat that replaced his black coat. Hearing my true name after so long. Ienzo answered, “I would recommend checking the second folder drawer.”

       Aeleus, a broad-shouldered man in a blue uniform, stated by the drawer, “Here they are.” He paused, inquiring, “Do you think that we’ll be able to find the answers to how our hearts were restored?”

       “Surely,” Even responded, pulling out another set of papers, “At the very least, we may be able to determine whether or not Xehanort knew that restoration would result from the destruction of one's Nobody and Heartless through our research or perhaps a source beyond us.”

       “The latter is certainly possible, as his plan seems to run deeper than any of us could have imagined,” Ienzo replied.

       Even gritted his teeth, glaring into the research papers, muttering, “And that’s all we ever were. Pawns in his grand game.”

       Before either Ienzo or Aeleus could respond to him, polite knocking sounded at the door. A woman in pink and white skirts with red ribbons in her brown hair entered. She smiled and held up a tray with tea and a white box, offering, “Refreshments?”

       “Oh certainly,” answered Even.

       “That is very kind of you,” Aeleus added as she set the tray onto a cleared space.

       “It’s no trouble. You three have been in here so long, I assumed that you needed something to drink,” she responded, pouring the cups.

       Ienzo stared at the white box, inquiring after a long moment, “If I may ask…what is that in addition to the tea?”

       She paused and opened the box, explaining, “Oh, right. Yuffie brought them.”

       The woman drew out sticks of sea-salt ice cream, stating, “She wanted me to bring them, saying that ‘it’d be easy to dehydrate from all the dust’.”

       “Well, I wouldn’t go that far,” Even argued, as Ienzo accepted an ice cream. The man added more to himself, “Though I do agree it can grow a bit stuffy in here.”

       Ienzo stared at the ice cream’s soft blue form. After a thoughtful moment, he took a bite with an icy crinkle.

       Even took a sip of his tea and made a noise of approval. He sighed, “This does take me back. The tea seems just as good as it was.”

       “That’s good to hear. Heartless invasions made cultivation very difficult,” the woman responded.

       “Understandably so. Perhaps a system could be-” Even paused, hearing watery hiccups. He glanced over to Ienzo, whose face was covered in tears. Even blinked and asked, “Ienzo! Are you alright?”

       “F-forgive me, I just-” the young man’s voice cracked. He covered his mouth, continuing shakily, “I r-remember having ice cream with him. Ansem. I remember, he was…was so happy. So kind. And then—we went behind his back. To do those…wretched experiments. He looked s-so…hurt.

       Ienzo leaned against the desk, gripping his head, “I regret everything I did. All that happened. Because now, I’ll never-” His throat closed, and he harshly swallowed to breathe. Tears dripped onto the ice cream as he finished hoarsely, “Now I’ll never be able to share this with him again.”

       His chest ached and deep chills cut through his body. He trembled, and his breathing shuddered. Ienzo felt a heavy hand on his shoulders. Wordlessly, Aeleus had wrapped an arm around him.

       Even, after a moment, spoke up, “There is something of note considering Ansem’s departure.”

       He put a hand to his chin, continuing, “When his encoding machine self-destructed, breaking apart Kingdom Hearts and purifying Riku back to his original form, Ansem himself could be assumed to have been obliterated, yes, but that may not be the only possibility. Before the encoder exploded, Ansem stated, ‘Anything could happen,’ according to King Mickey. It is because of this that the king holds onto the belief that Ansem is still out there, somewhere.”

       Ienzo regarded them with reddened eyes, and his breathing mostly evened out. He felt the ice cream drip on his hand. The young man finally responded, “…We’ve always searched for answers, haven’t we? The secret to hearts, the workings of darkness, and so forth. But, perhaps this time…” he wiped the ice cream from his wrist, finishing, “I want our search to mean something. To feel that we’ve truly contributed to the good of others. I suppose the best place to start is finding the answers to help repair the damage we’ve done.”

       His cohorts agreed. After some time to gather their bearings, the tray was cleared out and they resumed shuffling through papers and combing through notes. When Ienzo drew out a stack of papers from Ansem’s desk, he heard a wooden clatter on the floor. It was a cleaned ice cream stick with ‘WINNER’ printed on the side. He must’ve saved it so as to it exchange it for a free ice cream later, Ienzo reasoned. He drew up the stick and pocketed it, promising to return it to him in person.
It's Mother's Day, and Marinette is helping her father surprise her mother with a party. While they prepare, Sabine takes a walk and meets an unexpected companion. Meanwhile at city hall, the mayor rejects a request to renovate an old park placed by a woman named Rosalie Sylviane. She falls under Hawkmoth's influence and becomes Mother Nature, a villain that controls plants.
~

       Small feet pattered down wooden stairs, with morning light streaming in through the window. It was a petite woman, with short black hair and a cheongsam-style blouse. The smell of flour and sugar filled the air. Just before Sabine reached the last step, her husband’s towering figure and her daughter’s slender form rushed into the way.

       “Good morning, Mom,” Marinette cheerfully greeted just as Tom spoke up similarly, “Morning, dear!”

       Sabine chuckled, “Well, good morning. You two are up bright and early today.”

       “Oh, of course! It’s such a lovely day today,” Tom hurriedly responded.

       “So lovely, in fact, we think that you should take a stroll through town!” Marinette added.

       “You know, that’s not a bad idea…” Sabine replied with mock-surprise and a knowing smile. “But won’t you two come with?”

       “Oh! No, we, uh-” Tom started, eyes darting to the side.

       “-have to clean the kitchen,” Marinette finished quickly. Her dad nodded vigorously. Marinette then led her mother to the door, continuing, “It’ll be so boring. But you should go enjoy yourself instead! Trust us, we’ll have things covered here.”

       Sabine soon found herself at the front door with Tom slipping her purse into her hand. She turned to her husband and daughter, replying, “Alright, I’ll be heading out then.”

       Tom kissed her cheek, his mustache tickling her skin, “Love you, dear.”

       Marinette kissed her other cheek, “Have fun, Mom.”

       “Bye-bye, you two,” Sabine called back as she exited the bakery, the bell ringing over her head. Once the door shut, she giggled to herself and started down the sun-filled sidewalk.

       Meanwhile, Marinette and Tom had their ears pressed to the door. The teen looked to her father, stating, “She totally suspects us.”

       He waved it off, “That doesn’t mean she’s having any less fun by playing along.” Tom then shot his daughter a grin, “Ready to get to work?”

       “Let’s go!” Marinette answered. They high-fived before scurrying back into the kitchen.

***

       Sunlight poured in from a wall of long windows, engulfing a wide couch and foosball table. However, the warming rays were just short of an unoccupied desk, which held three deactivated monitors, and the bed beside it. Adrien, fully dressed, was spread out on his mattress, staring unhappily at his phone. A small, black shape darted from one of the trophy shelves beside the desk and flew over to Adrien. The cat-like kwami landed on his stomach, pouting at the young man. Adrien didn’t react, instead listlessly flipping through pictures on his phone. Plagg prompted angrily, “You’ve been sitting like this all morning! Aren’t we doing anything today?”

       Without looking from the picture of a smiling, blonde woman on his phone, Adrien mumbled back, “I don’t have any lessons or photoshoots. It’s my free day today. Of all days. I’d like to hang out with Nino, but he’s busy.” Adrien sighed before adding, “Why do you mind if we stay here anyways? You could just nap or something.”

       “But I’m hungry! Can’t we go somewhere and get food?” Plagg asked.

       “There should be some more cheese in the drawer,” Adrien murmured, closing his eyes.

       Plagg answered slowly, looking to the side, “Uh...there isn’t.”

       Adrien’s eyes came open. He lifted his head to look at Plagg in surprise, “Don’t tell me you ate all of it already.”

       “I was bored!” Plagg argued, “You were just laying around so I kept eating!”

       Adrien blinked before breaking out into a laugh. He replied, “Even if I wasn’t, you probably would’ve eaten it all anyways.” Adrien then looked to the windows, where he could see the brightly lit, blue sky. The light reflected off of the other half of the mansion’s light-colored stone. After a minute, he mused aloud, “It seems so nice out…maybe I could go run some errands.”

       Plagg floated up excitedly as Adrien swung his feet over the side of the bed. He stood and stretched, shedding hours of motionlessness. Adrien pulled open his jacket, allowing Plagg to fly inside.

***

       Tom fed a pot of cake batter into the oven’s heat-spewing mouth before shutting the heavy door. Afterwards, he straightened up and stated, “There! Once that’s done, all that’ll be left is to decorate the cake and set up the-”

       He paused, something clicking in his mind. Tom then exclaimed, slapping his hands to his head, “Oh no!”

       Marinette paused frosting the cupcakes, asking, “What’s wrong?”

       “I forgot your mother’s gift at the jewelry store!” Tom put a hand to his forehead with a panicked groan, “What are we going to do?”

       “Don’t worry, Dad.” Marinette assured. She went on to say, “I can pick it up while you keep setting up for the surprise party.”

       Tom blinked before his face set with determination. He clapped his hands on Marinette’s shoulders and stated, “Alright, I’ll leave it to you. Just hurry back, and be careful not to run into your mother.”

       She nodded back, responding confidently, “You can count on me!”

       Tom smiled and kissed his daughter’s forehead before letting go. Marinette then hurried upstairs while Tom took her place by the cupcakes.

       A few minutes later, the store’s door chimed as Marinette peeked her head out of the doorway. She had on a green hat with a flat crown and dark green ribbon, in combination with a pair of sunglasses. Marinette glanced around before slipping out onto the sidewalk.

***

       A cheery ring sounded as Sabine exited a jewelry store with a small bag, her change in her hand. From inside, the clerk called after her, “Have a nice day!”

       “Thank you. You too,” she called back before the door shut behind her. Sabine paused in the middle of the sidewalk, pulling open her purse. However, she fumbled her change, and several coins bounced off of the purse, scattering noisily across the concrete. Sabine made a noise of annoyance and stooped down to pick up the change by her feet.

       All the while, someone nearby also paused and retrieved several more coins across the ground. A young man, change in hand, returned to his feet and approached Sabine, who stood up as well. Adrien offered his hand and the words, “Ma’am, I believe you dropped this?”

       Sabine turned to him in surprise. She glanced over him and then smiled, “Oh, thank you.”

       She accepted the change, and, as she stored them in her purse, Sabine asked, “Say…aren’t you Adrien, Marinette’s classmate?” She introduced herself, “I’m her mother, Mrs. Dupain-Cheng.”

       “Oh, nice to meet you,” Adrien responded and smiled politely. He added, “Marinette’s a good classmate. Very hardworking.”

       “I’m happy to hear that,” Sabine replied. She then glanced at a grocery bag in Adrien’s hand. With a knowing grin, Sabine re-met Adrien’s gaze and guessed, “So, are you out shopping for a certain someone today?”

       Adrien blinked in confusion for a moment. He followed her gaze to the bag before catching her meaning. Finally, he glanced at the ground and responded hesitantly, “Oh. Uh- no, actually. This is just groceries. She isn’t- I mean...I’m not out shopping for anybody.”

       Sabine’s smile dropped, and she cleared her throat, “O-oh. Excuse me.”
There was an awkward pause between the two. Finally, after some thought, Sabine glanced at Adrien and offered, “Say...how would you feel about walking with me?”

       “Come again?” Adrien replied in puzzlement.

       Sabine explained, “I was just thinking that perhaps we could shop together, seeing as how we’re both running errands. I do think it would be much more fun to have someone else along.”

       Adrien was quiet for a moment. Finally, he sheepishly smiled and replied, “...Sure. Why not?”

       Afterwards, Adrien walked to Sabine’s side, and she smiled supportively. They then proceeded down the sidewalk together.

***

       A woman, dressed in business black with her brown hair tied tightly back, stood with nervous energy in the marble corridor. She rubbed her thumbs over the edges of the clipboard and the petition forms covered in rows of varying signatures. Her green eyes poured over the names, reviewing them. A door hinge creaked beside her, followed by the prompt, “The Mayor will see you now.”

       The woman’s head snapped up attentively, and she nodded in affirmation. She then pulled herself from the wall, straightened her back and strode through the doorway. Once Rosalie entered the office, she was greeted by the sight of the mayor, in the midst of a signing papers. Finally, he set down in pen and greeted with a business-like smile, “Ah, so you must be Rosalie Sylviane, yes? Well, what can I help you with today?”

       Rosalie cleared her throat and straightened her back, answering as evenly as she could, “Ah, I’m here on behalf of those who have a concern with your recent announcement about replacing the Somnolent Park with a new shopping center.”

       “Oh? And what might that be?” the mayor inquired, fingers woven over his desk.

       “Well, Mr. Mayor, they request for the park not to be demolished,” Rosalie answered.

       Before she could go on, the mayor spoke up, “I’m not sure if I really understand that, Ms. Sylviane. The park is very outdated and unkempt. However, it also doesn’t have any historical value, so I would think that the change would be welcomed.”

       “The park does have sentimental value, Mr. Mayor,” Rosalie replied, to which the mayor’s smile broadened in amusement. She continued, “The request asks that the park be renovated, so that it can be preserved-”

       “That is certainly an idea, Ms. Sylviane.” The mayor cut in, keeping his smile, “However, I do believe that the shopping center will have a much greater benefit and profit for the community in the long-run.”

       “But, Mr. Mayor,” Rosalie persisted, causing the mayor’s smile to drop. She showed the papers on her clipboard and continued, “I have the petition right here. The community doesn’t want-”

       “Ms. Sylviane,” the mayor interrupted again. Once she quieted, he continued, picking his smile back up, “As the mayor, I do my best to listen to the opinions of individuals such as yourself. There are times, however, where I must make an executive decision for the city as a whole.”

       Rosalie’s shoulders dropped, “I-I see.” She glanced at the clipboard, her eye running over the rows of signatures. She straightened up, regaining her confidence, “Mr. Mayor, I would like to clarify that there has been an alarming decrease in the number of parks and natural reserves. By renovating this park, you can help lessen this problem.”

       However, the mayor nodded and responded, “I will certainly keep that in mind for future reference.” Oblivious to the woman’s trembling grip on her clipboard and desperate look, he went on, “Now, Ms. Sylviane, I believe it’s time for us to wrap up our meeting. I have another appointment coming in, so if you don’t mind-”

       “Though you say it’s for the good of the people, it doesn’t seem like you’re listening at all!” Rosalie shouted, cutting him off. Her voice shook as she ranted, “Y-you pretend to follow other’s requests, when you’re really following your, own best interest! There’s even rumors that many of your executive decisions are based on the whims of your teenage daughter!”

       Immediately afterwards, Rosalie covered her mouth and went quiet. Unfortunately, the mayor’s glare already stabbed into her. He stood from his seat and jabbed at the door, ordering, “Leave me my office now!”

       Rosalie opened her mouth, as if about to say something else, but she instead her trembling lips. Shoulders sinking, the woman turned and retreated out of the room. As she entered the hallway, she hugged the clipboard and her eyes began to sting. She picked up her pace once she was out of the sight of the doorway. Her heels hurriedly clacked against the polish tile. Her buzzing thoughts pushed out any outside noise as she passed people going up the stairs. Finally, Rosalie stopped behind a pillar in the front area of city hall, and she pressed her back against it. She then looked down at the clipboard in her hands. She slid her gaze over the rows of varied signatures, some in red, others in blue, and sometimes they veered off of the line. Rosalie shut her eyes and sunk shamefully against the pillar, whispering, “I’m sorry. I’ve let you down.”

***

       A mechanical whir broke the chamber’s silence, and ghastly blue light was allowed into the circular room. The moment the light struck the white forms along the ground, the butterflies, now luminescent, took to the air. They filled the dim chamber as a cloud of beating wings, hovering around the figure in the center of the room. His black and purple suit contrasted like a dark hole to the ethereal light of the room. Under his silvery mask he smiled, gazing in satisfaction towards the woven ironwork of the circular window. His deep voice echoed through the papery wingbeats like an eager growl, “Such a shame. All that effort for a good cause, only to be heartlessly turned away.”

       He lifted his black gloved hands, with one palm open beckoningly. Of the cluster, a single butterfly fluttered down and settled onto his palm. He then cupped his other hand over the pale form, with glowing blackness forming between his grasp. The man lifted his hand, revealing what once was a blank-colored slate to a creature with darkened wings that pulsed with venomously bright purple energy. The corrupted butterfly flew from his palm and towards the window. The man took up his purple walking stick and called after the creature as it slipped past the ironwork, into the Parisian horizon, “Fly away, my little akuma, and possess this poor woman.”

***

       Rosalie was slumped against the pillar, the clipboard limp in her hand. Her eyes were tightly shut, and she took no notice of the dark, glowing fluttering shape that glided to her side. The akuma flew into the petition papers, striking the surface and oozing into it like a stain. As the papers turned deep purple, Rosalie, suddenly calm, lifted her head with shadows around her eyes.

       A deep and inviting voice rang through her mind, claiming, “Mother Nature, I am Hawkmoth. People these days no longer have an appreciation for the natural world and its beauty. I can help you to remind them of their roots. All I ask in exchange is a little favor.”

       The woman response came out as a low growl, “Paris will know of nature’s wrath.”

       She straightened up and her hands dropped to her sides, with a wave of glowing purple energy bubbled from her clipboard and up her arm before spreading across her body.

***

       The mayor was in the midst of signing papers when the sound of splintering wood broke the calm. His door was burst apart by twisted pillars of thick vines. He cried out and ducked behind his desk. He only poked his head out to look at the doorway.
A green-skinned woman, with streams of green leaves woven into her blonde hair, stood in the doorway. Large, purple petals pulsed out of the back of her bark-textured suit, and a purple, paper flower sat on her chest. Her glowing green eyes, framed by a black mask with silvery patterns of leaves, took notice of him. She threw out her hand towards him, and the vines followed by wrapping around the desk. The mayor let out a surprised yelp when the desk was lifted up, leaving him exposed and sitting on the floor.

       Mother Nature then directed the vines to pick up the mayor and pull him in front of her, so she was able to shout in his face, “You shall pay for your selfishness! Bear witness as nature takes back its rightful home!”

       The mayor cried out in panic as he was dragged out of the room. It wasn’t long before Mother Nature stood on top of city hall, with the mayor bound by vines beside her. She raised her arms and declared, eyes turning to her from the streets, “This day! Paris shall be reminded of its heritage! Humans have taken more than their share; now nature has come for its due!”

       In the next moment, the ground shook violently, with onlookers losing their balance and car alarms going off. Asphalt and cement then split open, bulky vegetation bursting from underneath. Screams also broke out, with people rushing away from the green pillars. However, smaller vines pulled the slower of the crowd into veiny pods. The green shell clasped over them like a cage. Cars that tried to tear away were blocked in if not turned onto their sides by erupting vines. All the while, over the calamity, Mother Nature rung with victorious laughs.

***

       “After that, Nino and I couldn’t look at tomato sandwiches the same ever again,” Adrien finished, receiving a laugh from Sabine.

       “It certainly sounds like you have a lot of fun at school,” the woman commented with a smile.

       “Oh, definitely. It’s usually when I get to see all my friends,” Adrien added.

       “You must get along with just about everyone, don’t you?” Sabine teased.

       Adrien responded with a modest laugh, “I suppose so.”

       After a moment, Sabine smiled slyly and inquired, “So...do you see anyone at your school as more than just a friend?”

       Adrien paused and looked over in surprise, “Pardon?”

       Sabine giggled and replied, “Oh, don’t mind me being nosy.”

       Before Adrien could inquire further, the ground trembled. Sabine cried out and lost her balance. Adrien immediately caught her. Several roars of crumbling pavement and cracking concrete added to the trembling, green pillars of vegetation rising up from the ground. They only had a moment to stare in shock before several tendrils of vines lunged from the closest pillar. Adrien darted in front of Sabine. He felt the vines whip around him, pinning down his arms and legs. In the next second, he was yanked off of the ground, towards the hollow, green pillar. After he was pulled inside, he heard the woman cry out as she was being dragged away by separate group of vines.

       “No!” Adrien cried. The vines no longer held him, but the walls of the pod closed, shutting out his view of the street. He was then left with only dim light bleeding through the veiny green walls. After a futile push against the pod surface, Adrien let out Plagg from his jacket pocket, urging, “Hurry! We gotta transform!”

       Plagg groaned, “This is why I prefer cheese over greens.”

       Adrien thrust out his fist with the silver ring, calling out, “Plagg, Claws out!”

       The ring turned black and Plagg was then sucked into it. After Plagg disappeared from sight, a green paw print lit up in the ring’s flat center. There were then several green flashes that left black leather in its wake. His shoes were silver-toed and connected to his leather suit. The belt lashed like a tail, and his clawed gloves cut the air. Black cat ears jutted out of his wild, blond hair. Behind the black, domino mask, his green eyes glowed, where slit pupils bore through the faint light.

       Chat Noir now stood in the center of the imprisoning pod. He drew out the metal rod from above his tail, and, with a click, he extended it into a staff. He yelled and slashed at the green walls, breaking them open with a leafy burst. Chat Noir leapt out into the sunlight, finding the street almost completely covered in vines as thick as iron cables. He looked to one of the other pods and ran over to it, calling, “Hey, this is Chat Noir! Can you hear me in there?”

       Sabine’s muffled voice answered, “Yes!”

       “Okay, step back, I’m goinna get this open!” Chat Noir stated. After a moment, he slashed at the pod’s surface, breaking it like the last. He peered inside, seeing the woman’s frightened face.

       He opened his mouth to assure her, but she suddenly jumped in front of him, pleading, “Oh, Chat Noir, please hurry! There’s a boy I was with, and he probably needs help right now!”

       “Uh- I...” Chat Noir, caught off-guard, hesitated. He glanced at the pod he had burst out from before pointing a thumb to it with the statement, “…already took care of it! I mean, I had freed a boy just before you so, um, that was probably him. He, uh, went to safety away from the vines. You can probably find him there but try to stay out of the street.”

       Relief flooded over Sabine’s face. Warmly, she replied, “Thank you, Chat Noir” and then hurried down the street.

       Chat Noir watched her go with his own smile. His features dropped into a glare as the cracking of concrete in the distance brought his attention back. He spun his metal rod readily before bolting deeper into the vine-embedded streets.

***

       A silvery ring indicated Marinette exiting a jewelry store, with a small bag in her hands. The young girl paused outside of the door and peeked into the bag. Inside was a gleaming necklace, with smaller gems framed around a central, blossom-shaped piece. Tikki poked out from behind Marinette’s pigtail and squeaked in her ear, “Wow! It looks beautiful!”

       “Yeah, I can’t wait to see the look on Mom’s face. She’ll be so happy,” Marinette agreed.

     Abruptly, the ground quaked. Marinette cried out and nearly dropped the necklace. She fumbled until she regained her grip. Afterwards, Marinette straightened and looked around, “What was that?”

       There was another quake. This time, she could pinpoint it towards the distance, farther within in the city, where fearful screams also sounded.

       “Sounds like we need to transform…” Marinette murmured, glancing towards Tikki. She hurried around the corner of the building and tucked herself away in a shaded alley. Marinette carefully set down the little bag before straightening up.

       Marinette brushed her hand over her earring, resulting a dash of sparkles, and she called out, “Tikki, Spots on!”

       The pink kwami swirled into the earring, and each one gained black spots over their red surface. A red and black-spotted mask appeared over Marinette’s eyes, with red ribbons jutting from her pigtails. Rows of black spots materialized over the red suit that covered her body. A yoyo, matching the pattern, wrapped around her waist like a belt. Now, Ladybug stood in the alleyway. She drew out her yoyo but paused, remembering the little bag by her feet. She picked up the bag and stuck it to the hip of her suit, before turning toward the street.

       Ladybug launched her yoyo across, wrapping it around a chimney two-stories up. She pulled herself up to the rooftops and flew through the air. The streets below were crowded with thick vines and green pillars. She thought aloud, “Definitely an akuma.”

       She peered more closely at the vines. Despite steadily covering the street and climbing up the buildings, there seemed to be a pattern within the vines. She noted aloud, “They’re all coming from the same direction.”

       Ladybug launched her yoyo to a higher building, allowing her to swing deeper into the city.

***

       A man bolted down the cracked street with a cry. Numerous vine tendrils lashed out from a green pillar and seized him. He fruitlessly resisted being dragged back. Before he was pulled into the pod, a metallic lash cut through the vegetation. The man stumbled free and looked over his shoulder at Chat Noir, who pointed a claw past him, stating, “Hurry off the streets. Get indoors if you can.”

       The man nodded wordlessly and took off. Chat Noir turned to the pillars farther down the street with the words, “It’s time to practice my plant pruning.”

       His staff suddenly began beeping. At the same time, a vine slithered towards his ankle. Chat Noir leapt up to a street lamp, away from the sidewalk. He perched on top of the lantern and minimized his staff to a short stick. With another press of the paw print button, he answered the call, his stick becoming a phone, “Well, hello, My Lady. I don’t suppose you’ve noticed Paris turning into an urban jungle?”

       “I’ve noticed,” Ladybug responded. She continued, “I’ve been following the trail, and the vines seem to be coming from city hall. Come meet me there.”

       “I will soon, but,” Chat Noir glanced at the street below, “there’s still a lot of people trapped in these plant pods.”

       “It’ll be alright.” She assured, “Everyone should be fine the sooner we catch the akuma.”

       After a moment, Chat Noir responded with a light smile, “You’re right. I’ll head over now, My Lady.”

       “Alright, see you soon.”

***

       Meanwhile, Ladybug peered around a chimney towards the streets, and she pulled up her yoyo. She tapped on it so it flipped open like a phone. Peering through the screen, she zoomed in for a better view of the vegetation-infested city hall. A wall of thick vines and entangled cars covered the entrance. She heard a metal clunk behind her, and she turned to see Chat Noir landing from having vaulted himself onto the rooftop.

       “Hello, My Lady. I didn’t leaf you waiting too long, did I?” Chat Noir asked with a wink.

       Ladybug rolled her eyes, responding, “No, but we still don’t have time to joke around.”

       She turned back to city hall, adding, “We have to find a way to get in there. The doors are completely blocked.”

       Chat Noir looked over her shoulder, peering at the building. He pointed past her, suggesting, “What if we tried going through the windows? The upper ones don’t look blocked.”

       After consideration, she responded, “Alright. But we’ll need to move fast.”

       He nodded, and they moved to the back of the roof together. They pulled up their weapons. Their feet pounded across the rooftop until they leapt off the edge. Chat Noir extended his staff behind him, pushing himself off of the building. All the while, Ladybug rapidly spun her yoyo overhead, allowing her to guide her fall towards window.

       There was a shattering crash, and they tumbled into a hallway, shards of glass raining around them. The light outside was immediately blocked out by vines barring the opening. Chat Noir commented, “Well...I guess we’re not going out the way we came in.”

       Ladybug turned to the window, replying, “Something doesn’t seem right about this. It almost seems like they were expecting us.”

       Chat Noir’s ear twitched at the sound of crinkling leaves. There was a flash of gnarled vines, and his voice rung out, “Look out!”

       Ladybug turned, just in time to see Chat Noir throw himself in the way of plant tendrils aimed at her. She reached out for him, but he was pulled towards the ceiling. A woman’s voice taunted from a purple lily on the wall, “Did you really think you could sneak up on me? I am Mother Nature! I control all of Paris! And my influence will spread once I deal with you pests!”

       The vines spread up Chat Noir’s arm, edging towards the ring on his hand. Mother Nature’s laughter filling her ears, Ladybug threw her yoyo at the vines, cutting through them. However, more simply extended from the ceiling to keep Chat Noir in the air. Ladybug paused, her stomach dropping. However, her eyes trailed along the vines, noticing how they spread from the lily. With a grunt, she launched her yoyo and crushed the flower. The green tendrils collapsed in response, and Chat Noir landed on his feet. Ladybug helped him up, tensing when the vines moved.

       They watched the vines recede towards the broken lily, which started to slide down the hall. Chat Noir ran down the hall, calling, “Let’s follow it!”

       Ladybug hurried after Chat Noir in the dim light. Many of the hallway lights were broken, while the windows were covered by vines outside. She focused on the leaves of the vines, which rattled as they slid around the corner.

       Chat Noir entered the new corridor, seeing the crushed lily slide down the floor. Ladybug cried out behind him. A new set of vines had come down from the ceiling, grabbing Ladybug. More vines dropped down towards Chat Noir. He spun his staff overhead, cutting the ends of the tendrils. Ladybug, however, was still trapped by the vines, and she struggled as they crawled towards her earrings. Chat Noir’s gaze caught on a purple tulip on the ceiling. He stopped spinning his weapon and shrunk it down. The recovered tendrils reached for him, and he threw his baton just before getting entangled. The metal stick flipped through the air, destroying the tulip.

       The vines dropped Ladybug and Chat Noir. The crushed tulip receded with the vines down the hall, the same direction that the lily had gone. The pair exchanged looks before following the tulip, scanning the halls with their weapons readied. They soon reached a curved staircase leading down to the building’s lobby, which was flooded by tangles of vegetation. Mother Nature stood in the center, the mayor encased in a wooden cage beside her. There were four purple petals jutting out of her back. She laughed expectantly, “You’ve dug your own graves!”

       She reached over her shoulder, drawing out three seeds, each the size of her hand. The woman cast the seeds among the thick undergrowth. Three of the petals on her back fell, and three purple flowers sprung from the seeds. A daisy, carnation and rose took control of the surrounding vines. Mother Nature laughed again and lifted her hand.

       Ladybug and Chat Noir leapt down the stairs, a wall of brambles closing the hall behind them. They caught themselves halfway down the steps, but the rose threw waves of briar-covered vines to meet them. The pair were forced to separate, and there was the sound of concrete snapping as the stairs cracked from the lunging thorns. Ladybug landed in front of the daisy’s cluster of vines, whose slithering ends she cut with her yoyo. Chat Noir, all the while, spun his staff to push back the carnation’s writhing tendrils. Mother Nature laughed, with the mayor cowering at her side.

       Chat Noir interrupted his staff spinning to instead pushed himself off the ground, propelling himself back up to the railing. However, the carnation lashed its vines after him. Chat Noir was forced to a stop, tendrils latching around his wrists and waist. A whir caught his ear, and the carnation was jerked back by a yoyo wire. The vines fell away from Chat Noir. In that same moment, green tendrils whipped around Ladybug, pinning her arms to her sides and lifting her from the ground. More of the lily’s vines crawled up towards her head. Chat Noir prepared to leap off the railing, but the rose’s thorny appendages moved in his way. He paused before grinning and pulling up his staff like a baseball bat. With a metal clang, Chat Noir smacked the closest, thorned appendage, which fell onto the lily. The vines around Ladybug went limp. Ladybug then turned towards the rose, now able to spin her yoyo. All the while, Chat Noir readily twirled his staff, slit-eyes locked on the purple rose.

       The yoyo whistled through the air as Ladybug launched it towards the rose. Chat Noir sidestepped a thorny tendril, which broke through the railing. He leapt from the crumbling stone, and pulled his staff overhead. Chat Noir fell towards the rose, swinging down his staff all the while. Half of the petals were cut out by Ladybug’s yoyo, and the rest were swept away by Chat Noir. The pillar of writhing, thorn vines shuddered once more before collapsing into a lifeless heap. When Chat Noir landed, he and Ladybug turned their attention towards Mother Nature. Ladybug looked her over, eyes catching on the paper flower on her chest. Ladybug stated, “Chat Noir, I think the akuma is in her brooch.”

       “Got it,” he replied, holding up his staff.

      The woman had stopped laughing, her throat gone dry. She reached over her shoulder but glanced unsurely at the last petal on her back. Chat Noir and Ladybug started to approach. Mother Nature bit her lip before drawing out a seed. Chat Noir and Ladybug froze defensively. Mother Nature threw the seed behind her, where it soaked into the ground, dragging vines down with it. The ground trembled and a thick pillar of purple wood pushed up from the marble floor. The enormous tree grew until it broke through the ceiling, raining down plaster, stone and sunlight. When they looked back, a purple tree towered behind Mother Nature. The woman plucked the Mayor from his cage and moved towards the opening within the tree, stating, “Once I’m done recharging, you’ll have no chance at stopping me!”

       Ladybug and Chat Noir gasped and bolted forward. However, when Mother Nature stepped into the tree, its trunk began to close over her. The Mayor cried from the shrinking opening, “H-help!”

       His shouting was cut off by the bark connecting. The tree then started to glow and the ground vibrated. Ladybug stopped cautiously, but Chat Noir continued forward, declaring, “I got this!”

       Ladybug focused on the area around the tree. Chat Noir pulled his hand back, starting to shout, “Cata-”

       “Chat Noir! Get back!” Ladybug yelled, cutting him off. He paused, feeling the ground shift. Venus flytraps the size of his head then pushed through the marble. Ladybug’s yoyo wrapped around Chat Noir’s waist and yanked him away, toothy plants snapping after him. Chat Noir landed by Ladybug as a wall of Venus flytraps surrounded the tree. Ladybug readied her yoyo and stated, “I’ll take care of this.”

       Ladybug let out a yell as she launched her yoyo at the snapping plants. However, the Venus flytraps ducked, and so the yoyo bounced harmlessly off of the glowing trunk. Ladybug reeled back her yoyo, looking dumbfounded. Chat Noir crossed his arms, commenting, “I guess we need another tactic to root out her defenses.”

       “There’s only one option left then,” Ladybug replied. She flung her yoyo straight up, proclaiming, “Lucky Charm!

       Waves of ladybugs poured from her twirling yoyo. The flittering streams then swirled together, creating a large flash. In place of the light, there was a small red-and-black spotted box. The item landed in Ladybug’s hand. She inspected it quizzically, “A box of matches?”

       Chat Noir also looked puzzled, wondering, “Okay, a fire’s one option, but will it really be enough?”

       “No, and we’d risk hurting the Mayor,” Ladybug responded. She added, her mind starting to wander, “But, there has to be a way...”

       Ladybug’s gaze darted around. Through a grey lens, she focused on the flytraps, which flashed red-and-black. Her eyes then darted to the matchbox and finally the paper bag attached to her hip. Ladybug smiled in realization, “I got it!”

       She wound back her hand before pelting the matchbox forward. The flytraps, like before, dodged the matches. The small box clattered harmlessly by the tree’s roots. Chat Noir furrowed his eyebrows in confusion, starting to ask, “My Lady, what are you-”

       “Trust me, this will work,” Ladybug responded, pulling the necklace out from the bag.

       Chat Noir paused. He then replied with an earnest smile, “I trust you.”

       The tree pulsed, and the ground cracked beneath them. Vines began to slip through the crevices. Chat Noir sucked in air through his teeth and swung at the vines. Ladybug looked in panic, but held up the necklace so sunlight reflected off of the largest gem. She kept light focused on the matchbox. More vines sprouted from the ground. Chat Noir’s baton slammed the green tendrils back into their crevices, though Ladybug could feel their tips brush against her ankles. However, she kept her hand steady, keeping the sunbeam on the matchbox. There seemed to be a thin film of smoke. A grip tightened around her foot. Finally, the matchbox burst into flames. At the same time, more tendrils yanked down Ladybug’s arm, nearly pulling her to the ground. All of the Venus flytraps hissed and started lunging at the fire, trying to put it out. Ladybug shouted, “Chat Noir! Now’s your chance!”

       Chat Noir’s gaze lingered on Ladybug and the encroaching vines, but he turned away to vault himself over to the tree. Burning foliage filled his nose as he landed among the distracted flytraps. He raised his hand, his ring flashing green, and he shouted, “Cataclysm!

       Bubbling blackness covered his palm, emitting a low hum. He slammed his hand against the glowing tree trunk. The black aura sunk into the tree, and its luminescent surface became rusted brown. Dry cracks spread until the bark fell like brittle cardboard at Chat Noir’s feet. Soon, Mother Nature was exposed and gasped, “How-? N-no!”

       Chat Noir plucked out her paper brooch. Mother Nature fruitlessly reached after it, but Chat Noir tossed the brooch to Ladybug, calling out, “A flower for you, My Lady!”

       Ladybug lashed out her free hand, catching the brooch. She slapped it to the ground, and stomped on the paper, shouting, “Get out here, you nasty little bug!”

       From the crushed bits, a glowing and purple butterfly flickered out. The vines around Ladybug went limp, and the akuma started to flutter away towards the hole in the ceiling. Ladybug swiped her finger across her yoyo, so it opened like a beetle’s back and glowed pink. She swung her yoyo, spinning it behind her before lunging it forward as she shouted, “Time to de-evilize!”

       The glowing yoyo snatched up akuma. She snapped the yoyo back into her hand and declared, “Gotcha!”

       Ladybug then tapped the yoyo to open it. A white butterfly floated out, with Ladybug calling after it, “Bye-bye, little butterfly.”

       Afterwards, she reclaimed the matchbox, and she tossed it upward, shouting, “Miraculous Ladybugs!”

       The matchbox exploded into a waves of glittering ladybugs. They rushed over the plant overgrowth, the shattered marble and infested streets. In their wake, the vegetation was cleared, the streets and structures mended, and people sitting unharmed throughout the city. In city hall, the ceiling was closed and the Mayor, no longer bound, sat where the tree once stood. Mother Nature was on her hands and knees in the middle of the room. A purple aura receded down her body, returning the woman to her normal state. Rosalie sat up and murmured as she looked around, “What happened?”

       Chat Noir, all the while, had approached Ladybug. They connected their fists, celebrating, “Pound it!”

       “Ms. Sylviane?” was called by Rosalie’s side, where the Mayor stood.
The woman hurriedly got to her feet. She paused, noticing the clipboard of signatures on the ground. Rosalie reached for them, only for it to be picked up by the Mayor. There was a pause, before he held them out to her, suggesting, “Ah, after reconsidering my earlier...decision, perhaps we could come to a compromise?”

       Relief flooded over the woman’s face as she accepted the clipboard, “Thank you so much, sir.”

       Meanwhile, Ladybug worked to carefully place the necklace back into the paper bag. To her surprise, Chat Noir peered over her shoulder, inquiring, “What do you have there, My Lady? From an admirer?”

       “No. It’s a Mother’s Day gift...” Ladybug glanced to the side, adding, “that I’m helping to deliver, so I better get going.”

       She strapped the bag to her side and hurried to the door, calling behind herself, “See you around, Chat Noir!”

       He responded with a bow and watched her leave. Chat Noir peered to the side, murmuring to himself, “Mother’s Day...I should get going too.”

***

       Under the fluttering wingbeats, Hawkmoth growled and his cane creaked under the pressure of his grip. He clasped a hand over his brooch, and his voice rumbled against the metal walls, “Curse you, Ladybug. Your luck won’t last forever.” He then shouted to the window, as the metal shutters began to close, “I shall have your Miraculous!”

***

       Using his staff, Chat Noir vaulted himself between rooftops and then descended into a narrow alleyway. His ring beeped three times before his suit disappeared in a green flash. Plagg spun out into the air by Adrien’s shoulder, sighing, “Oh man, if I wasn’t hungry before, I sure am now.”

       “Hang tight, Plagg. You’ll be able to recharge once we get back home,” Adrien assured with a smile. The kwami slipped back into Adrien’s jacket, and the boy stepped onto the sidewalk.

       He was immediately greeted by a woman’s relieved cry, “Adrien! There you are!”

       Adrien turned to see Sabine hurrying towards him. He opened his mouth to greet her but was caught by surprise when she hugged him. Sabine pulled away, continuing to say, “Oh, thank goodness you’re safe! I couldn’t find you anywhere! I was so worried.”

       “I’m sorry to worry you, but I was fine,” Adrien responded, recovering himself. He quickly added, “Uh, because Chat Noir was there.”

       “Yes,” Sabine replied warmly, “We are very lucky to have heroes like him.”

       Adrien smiled back. Sabine then remembered the bags she held, and she returned Adrien’s forgotten groceries. He thanked her for it and prepared to head home. Sabine stopped him, however, and insisted, “Before you go, there’s something I wanted to give you.”

       She rummaged through her own bag until she drew out a silvery necklace. When she placed it in his hand, he could see a charm shaped like a mother bird embracing its child. Sabine explained all the while, “I was going to give this to Marinette, but I think it suits you just as well.”

       Adrien stared at the gift in surprise. Slowly, he looked back at Sabine with a touched smile, and he breathed, “I...thank you. Thank you so much.”

       She smiled, answering, “Thank you for walking with me.”

       The sun started to dip towards the horizon. The pair started to go their separate ways. Sabine called after him, “Have a safe trip home.”

       “You too, and Happy Mother’s Day, Mrs. Dupain-Cheng,” Adrien replied. She waved and finally turned away.

       Adrien continued down the sidewalk. After several silent minutes, he drew out the necklace, letting the orange sun reflect in his hand. He smiled softly and ran his thumb over the mother bird.

***

       The front door to the bakery rang, and Sabine stepped cautiously into the dark building, with only the red sunset outside to help. Even so, her footsteps moved to the stairs with confidence built in over years of habit. Sabine made her way upstairs, into an unusually quiet and lightless living room. Suddenly, rows of flower-shaped lights taped to the ceiling flicked on, with husband and daughter announcing, “Happy Mother’s Day!”

       Sabine let out a half-surprised giggle and clasped her hands. Tom and Marinette each hugged her before ushering her to the kitchen table, where a flower-themed cake and cupcakes waited. Before plates were distributed, the pair drew wrapped boxes from their hiding places. Marinette presented her mother with a hand-made sunhat, decorated with strawberry pink ribbon. Sabine recalled the prior week, where Marinette attempted to subtly bar her from her room as she worked in secret. Sabine had suspected a Mother’s Day gift, but it was more beautiful than she expected. Tom’s own box was much smaller, especially in his broad hands. When the gift was opened, the blossom center piece shone brightly, even in the dim light. Tom noted that Sabine sparkled brighter than the necklace, as he helped to clasp it around her neck. Soon enough, cupcakes and spongy cake slices occupied everyone’s plates.

       “So, how was your walk, Mom?” Marinette asked.

       Sabine smiled knowingly before she answered, “Well, you’ll never guess who was there to accompany me.” After a purposeful pause, she added mock-offhandedly, “It was a nice young man named Adrien Agreste.”

       Marinette stiffened with altered interest, “A-Adrien?”

       Her eyes darted to the side and she fiddled with her cake, stuttering, “R-really? How was he up to? I mean, what was he up to? Or, um, how was he?”

       “Haha, he was fine. I think he was running errands when we ran into each other. We decided to walk together and chat,” Sabine replied and continued with a grin, “And I might have told him about the times you would play dress-up with my clothes when you were little.”

       Marinette made a horrified gasp. She covered her face with her hands and groaned, “Mom. I love you, but how could you?

       Sabine giggled along with Tom, but she slid her daughter another cupcake as an apology. Marinette peeked past her fingers, unable to suppress her smile. As the cake continued to shrink, the family shared laughter through the night.
Mother's Day

For those of you that look at publishing dates, yes, this story is very late in terms of Mother's Day (or extremely early, if you wanna be smart about it). I was pretty busy at the time of writing this, what with finishing finals and moving houses, but I wanted to post it anyways for peace of mind.

I've become pretty invested in Miraculous Ladybug, and this marks my first, public contribution to the fandom. I have other, mimic-episodes like this one planned, but, overtime I will delve into more mold-breaking stories and definitely AU's. All in all, I hope that you've enjoyed this cute, little story and I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Loading...

deviantID

OshiMoon
Cassie
Artist | Student | Literature
United States
I am an aspiring author. Though I have plenty of original ideas I enjoy sharing fanfiction with others that may enjoy the same series.

My close friend tennieru is someone I've known for 13+ years. She's a young talented artist.

Madolche Puddingcess Stamp by SpektrumSP [Stmp] Tenjouin Asuka by AiroRokkuhauto Ramen Noodles by DazyCat Bakura church stamp by PecanPie :thumb322883259:
Interests
  • Listening to: His World by Zebrahead
  • Reading: Psychology Textbook and Art Appreciation Flashcard
  • Watching: Kaichou wa Maid-Sama!
  • Eating: Popcorn
  • Drinking: Water
Hey guys! Remember how I said that I was conducting reconstruction on some of my stories, you know...last year?
Yeah, that's still a thing that's going on.

However! The other news is that MY (unofficial) HIATUS IS FINALLY OVER!

I will be posting a "new" story called "The Honest Guest". It is another installment in the Shingeki no Kyojin and Gregory Horror Show crossover series that I have dubbed the Psychological Warfare series. It is not technically a sequel to the first installment, The Secretive Guest, as both stories do not have a directly correlation in terms of narrative, but it will involve the same set-up but different characters. Admittedly, this story was actually finished sometime last year, not long after I completed the Secretive Guest, but I felt that there needed to be break in between each series...then I promptly forgot about it and the break became much longer than I anticipated. Ah well. The first chapter will be posted soon after this journal, and I'll work out the schedule for posting the rest.

As for Reconstruction, allow me to better explain the nature of this. There are several stories which I have "Marked for Reconstruction", simply meaning that, instead of deleting and re-posting these stories, I will conduct various tweaks to the stories that I feel are very old and could use some tuning up. In many cases, excluding one, the changes may go as far as to effect the content of a chapter in a series, but not necessarily the entire narrative. Here's a list of the stories to expect to see changes in:

    Black Blood Series --> Expected Time to Reconstruct: A Fair Amount of Time (The story isn't too long and shouldn't be hard once I get to it)
    Bartender Demon --> Expected Time to Reconstruct: A LONG WHILE (As I wish to rewrite the story to fit the Soul Eater manga, which I haven't read yet, this will take a considerably longer time to edit)
    Music Mayhem:2.Revenge --> Expected Time to Reconstruct: Soon (This story is already in the middle of being reconstructed)
    Maka's Underworld --> Expected Time to Reconstruct: A Fair Amount of Time (The story isn't very long and I can't think of any major edits that would need to happen)
    Soul Eater Wonderland -->Expected Time to Reconstruct: A While (The time taken will mostly be account of the sheer Length of the story, though there shouldn't be too many narrative edits)

Now, this doesn't take into account the time I'll be spending with college (which I am almost through the freshman year of, by the way) nor the time I may be spending on other stories. This is mostly to show that, despite the long period of inactivity, I still very much care for these stories and appreciate the support that I've gotten from you guys : )

Thank you for reading this, and I hope you guys have a great time!

Journal History

Groups

Comments


Add a Comment:
 
:iconfurafura:
furafura Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2016  Professional
Thanks for the watch! ~♬
Reply
:icon1keepsake:
1Keepsake Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2014
i did it
Reply
:iconoshimoon:
OshiMoon Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2014  Student Writer
I see that! Wasn't it fun?
Reply
:icon1keepsake:
1Keepsake Featured By Owner Jun 26, 2014
oh LOADS^^
Reply
:iconoshimoon:
OshiMoon Featured By Owner Jun 26, 2014  Student Writer
Awesome~
Reply
(1 Reply)
:icon1keepsake:
1Keepsake Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2013

is watching A.o.T.

www.crunchyroll.com/attack-on-…

hmmm, opening credits aren't bad^^

Reply
:icon1keepsake:
1Keepsake Featured By Owner May 25, 2013
Happy SATUDAY!!!^^
Reply
:iconoshimoon:
OshiMoon Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2013  Student Writer
Happy Saturday to you! :3
Reply
:icon1keepsake:
1Keepsake Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2012
OH MY GLOB!! YAMI AS THE WHITE RABBIT!! too cute :3[link]
Reply
:iconoshimoon:
OshiMoon Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2012  Student Writer
That is kinda cute, with the little glasses and everything. Now, YUUGI as the White Rabbit, that's really adorable.
Reply
:icon1keepsake:
1Keepsake Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2012
haha^^ yup. by the way, i might not be at school today, im too sick..have a great day!
Reply
:iconoshimoon:
OshiMoon Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2012  Student Writer
I hope you get better!
Reply
(1 Reply)
:icon1keepsake:
1Keepsake Featured By Owner Oct 4, 2012
braains
Reply
:iconoshimoon:
OshiMoon Featured By Owner Oct 5, 2012  Student Writer
Nom nom nom
Reply
Add a Comment: