Adrien didn’t wish it often, but sometimes he wished that Plagg could powernap just a little bit faster.
They’d been trapped in this room for hours.
Ladybug, crouched against the wall with her forearms rested idly on her knees, watched him pace. “Chat?”
Adrien, feeling much too weak and, well, naked to be Chat, stopped anyway. “Yeah?”
Ladybug pursed her lips, studying him for a moment before saying, “You… do know this wasn’t your fault, right?”
He glanced pointedly at the small cataclysm-induced landslide blocking their way out that very much was his fault.
Ladybug’s brow wrinkled behind her mask. “No, I mean like… everyone makes mistakes.“
He raised his own brows.
Not that it was that odd for Ladybug to spout stuff like this on occasion, but it usually weren’t directed at him. He was used to mostly just getting compliments in various degrees of off-handedness and backhandedness from her. Touchy-feely conversations had never really been their forte.
She, as per usual, followed his thought process to a tee, and wrinkled her nose at him. “Yeah, yeah… But…” She regarded him for another minute, and then said, “I mean, even superheroes make mistakes. I’ve made a ton of them. It’s not… well, it’s not the end of the world, you know?”
She was going for reassuring, and he was a little bit reassured, but he kind of wondered what he must look like to bring her to actually trying to talk about this.
“Well,” he still couldn’t help but point out. “It’s kinda more likely to be the end of the world if we screw up, you know?”
And the akuma is still out there, went unsaid.
“Yeah, but we’re also a lot better at fixing it too,” was her rejoinder, the light in her eyes catching him and holding him to the spot, the quirk of her lips hypnotically confident.
Adrien swallowed and looked away, cursing his pulse for faltering.
His partner stretched and sighed, arms above her head and her muscles flexing under the skintight suit, and then said, “Seriously. I… know I don’t say it much, but you’re doing really well. I’ve had months of practice by now, and you’re almost better at this than I am.”
“Lies,” he said, just this side of too raspy, her words warming him from the inside out.
She smiled fondly at her palms. “I’m… really glad to have you around, you know.”
“I’m glad to be here,” he mumbled, cheeks tingling almost painfully hard. He scrubbed the back of his neck. “And I’m glad… I’m glad you’re not alone.”
Her bright, soft smile said, see? That’s what I’m talking about, and Adrien sighed.
That look was going to stick with him longer than they’d been stuck in here, he just knew it.