The first thing Marinette did after finding out that Chat was Adrien was, in fact, not take the posters and pictures off her walls.
Oh, she thought about it (because, seriously, it was embarrassing, and the second he realized that Marinette was Ladybug and that Marinette was a shameless fangirl he would never let her live it down), but, in the end, she had to stop and just… look at them.
Because that was her silly kitty striking all those ridiculous poses, her silly kitty working hard — her silly kitty working for Gabriel Agreste, and whether he was his child or not, that was impressive as hell.
Looking at them didn’t give her that little punch in the gut anymore, she found. They didn’t make her feel giddy or lightheaded of anything of that sort anymore.
They just made her feel warm.
Hey, she wanted to say — not that she could, or that anyone would listen, but still, look at what my partner did! Isn’t he good?
It also kind of made her want to know what was going through his head in some of them, because she knew him, and knew there was no way he’d be able to pull off some of those expressions without thinking something utterly ridiculous.
On the other hand, there were some that were just so him she couldn’t believe she’d never seen it before. Casual elegance with warm humor and soft smiles — the only expressions she couldn’t seem to find was those absurd(ly charmin— nope, nope, nope, not going there) — absurd grins she loved so much.
Did she say loved? She meant hated, obviously; they were so annoying! He was annoying. No amount of model-level looks could change that. Obviously. She didn’t know what she was thinking!
She found herself going through her collection, a little ache making itself known in the pit of her heart as it became more and more obvious that ‘reserved’ and 'elegant’ were the only sorts of pictures she had.
It hadn’t bothered her before she’d known he was Chat — back when he was more of an unattainable dream than anyone in particular — and to be sure, Chat could be elegant anytime he wanted, but…
It was a little like a cookie without real butter. Still a cookie, no doubt about that, but… something was missing.
Maybe it wasn’t quite so surprising that she’d never made the connection after all.
But, well, missing parts or no, she still had pictures of her dumb kitty all over her walls, intentionally or otherwise, and…
It was embarrassing, but her walls felt almost unbearably lonely as soon as she tried taking them down.
There were worse things to cover one’s space with, she figured.
And then she put them back up.