He watches the butterfly in his hand. "Sorry about this," he looks at the pure white wings, soon to be blackened with hate.

The bell rings, and he looks up. Time to put his other plan into action…

Marinette stares straight ahead as she walks into class. Yesterday was a mess of emotions and insanity. Apparently, not only is she a superhero now, but she's in danger of being roped into this for the rest of her life.

She slides into the room to see a blond boy crouched over her seat.

"Hey, what do you think you're…? You know what? I'm too tired to deal with this." She sees the gum, and the boy's wide eyes. "What, didn't think you'd get caught?"

"N-no! You have it wrong, I-"

"I'm sorry, no. You're not funny, and I'm sick of being pushed around by jerks like you lot," she glares at him. "Get off my desk."

He looks shocked, and more than a little hurt, but does as she says. She places a napkin over the gum, and offers Alya a thumbs-up. The redhead grins. "Told you, good people win out!"

Adrien watches the girl with wide eyes. "She's…"

"That's Marinette," the boy next to him says. "You, um… you caught her on a bad day. Honestly, though, why didn't you just say Chloe put the gum there?"

"I… I don't know. Chloe's kind of the only friend I have. I don't know why she's acting so crazy," he feels almost sick seeing her like this. It's not the girl he knows at all. Suddenly there's a commotion in the back of the classroom.

"Shut it, Kim!"

"Oh, please, you're such a-"

"SHUT UP!"

Adrien tenses, then looks in his bag. The butterfly's wings flutter gently. This is his chance. He gets up, and slips out of the classroom as the tall boy, Ivan, is sent to the principal's office.

Hiding behind the school, he tenses. "Can I do this…?" he looks at the butterfly, and thinks of the boy. Then, he thinks of his mother. "I have to."

The villain crashes through the city without warning. Marinette's prepared. Thank god for Mr. Noir, she thinks to herself, transforming quickly. If he hadn't told her all about villains, fighting, and her role, she'd be lost right now. As it is…

She races across the city, ready for action. He's already at the football arena, studying the creature. "It gets stronger with each hit," he tells her. "We can't attack head-on."

"Then what do we do?"

He looks at her. "You, kid, are staying here."

"What? Mr. Noir!" she complains. "I was picked to be the next Ladybug for a reason!"

"You're fifteen. That is a giant monster made of stone. I don't think you're ready to fight it."

"It has a classmate of mine! Also, I'm pretty sure it is a classmate of mine!"

"Really? Do you have any idea where the akuma object might be?"

There's a pause. "Well… no."

He looks her over carefully. "You're staying here. I'll figure this out, kid, okay?"

"Kid?"

"Yes, kid! You're fifteen, you're not ready for a fight yet!"

He turns around, and leaps into the fight, activating his Cataclysm calmly, and is about to use it on the monster when he feels a yo-yo around his waist, yanking him back. "What?"

"You can't do that, it'll hurt Ivan!"

"That's the point."

"There's got to be another way!"

"Kid-"

"No, Mr. Noir, I'm not a kid. I'm Ladybug, and I'm not letting you hurt him."

There are fifty thousand things running through Gabriel's mind as he stares down the girl. She's too young. Her naïve nature and innocence will get her killed in a second. She's not the kind of Ladybug he's worked with before.

But she's right. She's Ladybug. With a sigh, Gabriel lets the cataclysm go on a goal nearby. "Fine. Your move."

She looks surprised, but not unpleasantly so. She smiles up at him, before activating Lucky Charm.

"… Um," she stares at the wetsuit. "What am I supposed to do with this?"

Adrien watches through the staff. The two heroes are just… standing there. Holding a wetsuit. One of them broke a soccer goal.

"What the hell…?" he mutters. Then, he activates the akuma connection. "They're distracted. Get the stones and I'll get you're wish, okay? Then this can all be over."

The creature- no, Ivan, Adrien reminds himself, this is a person he's using, as soon as he forgets that, he's a goner- grunts in affirmation, and attacks the pair of heroes.

It's at that moment that the girl throws the man at Ivan, into his grip. Adrien sees what's happening quickly. "Drop him!" he orders, but it's too late, the tap's already been turned, and the letter falls to the ground, where the girl tears it apart, releasing the akuma. "It… It didn't work," Adrien whispers as the boy transforms back to normal.

The butterfly isn't gone though. It's still dark as night, flying higher and higher…

Adrien detransforms, letting Nuru fall into his hands. "Nuru… it's not purified like you said…tell me exactly what this means," he ordered.

"She must have forgotten…" the kwami looks up, sadly. "It means you just have to wait for the boy to get angry again… and in the meantime, the akuma can… multiply."

"Multiply?"

Marinette can barely believe that just happened. "It worked… Mr. Noir, it worked!" she jumps up, wrapping her arms around the man in her excitement. "I told you!" she trills.

"You sure did," he grins, ruffling her hair. "Not bad, kiddo…" he glances at the earrings. "Now get out of here before all of Paris finds out exactly who saved them."

She salutes, cocking her head, and dashes off, but not before talking to the girl who showed up to film everything and turn on the tap. Gabriel laughs, slipping away to detransform.

"So you'll do it?" Plagg grins.

"Well, I'm not leaving the city in the hands of a teenage girl."

The black kwami leaps out of his hands, hugging him as best he can. "It's good to have you back, Gabe!"

"Gabriel. It's Gabriel."

"Whatever!"

The akuma lands at the top of the Eiffel, and a flood of dark-winged butterflies starts streaming across the sky…