Chapter 1: Soundly Defeated: My "Music" Prompt!
These days, the streets of Paris were mostly run by two gangs. The first (named the Bloodveins) were a nasty group, willing to do what they needed to get the job done; killing, if necessary. The moth-monikered mooks had grown so strong that their first famous job had been taking out the entire police force and general law-based resistance; but that had been a while back. Now, the rest of Paris was falling as well, piece by piece. Their leader clearly was rich and powerful; with their superior firepower, strategy, and numbers, no fellow could be working the scenes without a lot of monetary backup.
The other gang of people (if you could really call them that) were called the Xìngyùn, and their job seemed to be either stopping the Bloodveins or cleaning up after them. Their leaders (an ever-so-slightly grizzled, determined-looking young couple calling themselves La Chanceuse and Chat Sauveur) had clearly stated that they only wanted to rule the streets temporarily, that they had “taken” what they needed so the Bloodveins weren’t able to. To many (if not all) of the people who could not fight for themselves, they were the last hope of paix à paris. The battle was tipped in the favor of the Bloodveins; they started the war (giving them a time advantage), they had more of everything they needed to do well.
As of this time, Paris looked like a bad place to be; well, unless you were a Bloodvein member.
Finally, someone in the ranks of Xìngyùn re-tipped the scales; even if it was just a little. Agent Fortanach was a brilliant rapper and disguise for Xìngyùn who had survived an attack from the Bloodveins; they killed her mother Anarka and almost got her brother Luka, so the second she was able to get there, she signed the both of them up for protection and in exchange, she signed herself up to join them in the fight. She was no experienced fighter, nor was she good with a gun; she just did the cleanup after battles.
She was more than that, though; she was trying to be a mover and shaker, trying to get the people to move into the necessary positions for Xìngyùn; and making the ballsy Bloodveins shake in their boots just so happened to be a nice side bonus.
Her name was Juleka Couffaine, but she went under the pseudonym of Reflekta. She earned the name because her songs talked the serious talk, making people a little less afraid despite the giant red mark the Bloodveins had undoubtedly painted over her head, and the lyrics in her raps made you reflect on how to deal with the gangsters should they try anything; teaching you how to keep those important to you safe. She not only made the people of Paris feel better despite the suffering they were in, she inspired them to stand up for their rights, to be ready to fight for what they deserved, for what they had lost and what they refused to lose.
She’d done collaborations with the now-retired Omar Lahiffe, who went by DJ Bubbler for a while, and she helped him when the Bloodveins got him hospitalized; the man was lucky to be alive. Juleka and Luka were placed as the temporary (if not permanent, should he die) guardians of his 19-year old son Nino, who was starting a rap career of his own. His name choice respected his almost-healed pops; having chosen the alias “The Carapace” was honorable; considering that naming yourself after what shielded both the top and bottom of the turtle was not only clever, but fitting for a young man who wanted to protect the father he nearly lost.
By the time the bad guys realized that Reflekta was a major threat, it was far too late, because at the end, it was Juleka and her girlfriend Agent Dulcet who helped to lead an important flank in the charge on the big man’s base. She later learned Dulcet was named actually named Rose, a sweet woman who worked as an interrogator who had often did good cop/bad cop with her friend Ivan (she was the bad cop). That wasn’t what Fortanach had been thinking about when they found out that fashion mogul Gabriel “Hawkmoth” Agreste was the mastermind of the terror his minions had inflicted on Paris. His arse was caught and arrested very quickly, and his sentence was even more swift (at least his sentence was properly draconian).
Chat Sauveur and La Chanceuse were hailed as the crime-fighting heroes of Paris’ Bloodvein Era, but they wouldn’t have lasted long without the drive and civilian support that Reflekta provided.
Chapter 2: The Makeup Test: My "Hero/Villain" Prompt!
Papilio had been nearby the hotel in civilian form when Kung Food had attacked. Seeing all that honey-esque stuff trickle down the Grand Paris like a golden mudslide (eww) was more than repulsive, but the real shame was that he’d just had lunch and was not hungry at all (not that this helped).
Nevertheless, it was his sworn duty to Champion someone and help the other two save the day, so he hid, transformed into his Miraculous form and got to work searching.
After finding two students he knew well, (Rose & Alix, if he recalled correctly), he had started to consider comitizing them, but then he realized the powers that would work for them wouldn’t be a good match-up for what appeared to be a honey-themed villain. Then he remembered Rose’s crush and fellow classmate Juleka, and thought to himself, “She was akumatized last time, wasn’t she? Let’s give her a shot - it’s the least I could do for nearly impaling her with Gladius! Heh, I really should be more careful with those kinds of comites …”
Thankfully, he sensed her not too far away, hanging out at her home. She was mostly at peace, but he could sense unease in her heart; chances were she was watching the battle ongoing between the two other heroes as they battled this so called “Kung Food.”
He wasn’t sure if Kung Food was the new name of Marinette’s unlucky uncle; she’d excitedly talked about him coming over for a while now. He wasn’t entirely sure, though - the TV reports were faraway due to the entrances and exits being blocked off. Wait, he thought to himself, I’m getting sidetracked; let’s get back to work.
Out the comes went, and when it reached Juleka’s room in her family’s houseboat ( she couldn’t escape getting rocked to sleep as she got older, it seemed), it embedded herself into the pendant on her wrist as she watched the TV with more intensity then he’d ever seen on her.
“I’m worried for them too, Juleka,” Papilio admitted, hoping to seem relatable. “But if you want to help them, I can get you the ab-”
In a surprisingly bold manner, the chosen civilian replied “Let’s do it. What’s my alias?”
Equally impressed, the superhero replied, “Whoa, now! I haven’t even given you the lowdown; I’m happy that you’re so passionate for this, Mlle. Couffaine. Or would you rather I call you… Oesypum , dearest master of makeup ?”
“Like I told you, M. Papilio, I’m in.”
He’d known Juleka for a good while, but he’d never seen her this determined.
A smirk crossed this face, but it lightened slightly when he was reminded the days when he used to have a smirk much cockier; days of Ladybirds and White Cats, a city of two unwilling murderers, a place chock-full of civilians that fought against their savior but did nothing to deal with their villains… of Tortue Cerveau, the absolute bastard, the one who had taken his beloved ones and corrupted them, ripped the good side out of his best friends from them and locked them away.
“Papilio? Are you okay?”
Ignoring the pain of the past, he explained her powers, and greenlighted her for battle.
“Where the heck is our Champion?” Chat Noir wondered out loud. Kung Food had been eating them for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and was currently enjoying a battle with Ladybug like a sweet dessert.
“I hate to insult him, chaton, ” his Lady shouted back as she dodged his pizza-like sword, “but you’re right. His timing could stand to be a bit better!”
Papilio’s timing, however, appeared to be more than fine, however.
Chat Noir had just returned from recharging when a mirror teleported onto the top floor that was temporarily turned to a battlefield. When it opened up, it released an extremely bright light that temporarily caught the akumatized chef’s focus, distracting him enough to allow Ladybug a free roundhouse to hs sorry butt. He nearly fell into his pool of probably-acidic “soup,” but he caught his balance just in time, pulled out a noodly flail and started swinging away. Good thing he didn’t fall in, though, Chat mused, their record of dead akuma was completely spotless.
Heh, spot less. He’d have to use that one on his Lady later; right now, however, the focus was the mirror. A single figure leapt out of it, throwing a small bottle of what looked to be eyeliner (being in the fashion industry made recognizing the bottle as eyeliner much easier ) that landed right in front of Kung Food. The luckless villain didn’t get a chance to look down before it exploded into a puff of smoke that magically took out the brush, grew it into the size of a foam hand you’d see at a sports game, and whacked his hat into the pool of… whatever the stuff he made was.
After Marinette’s uncle and Chloe had been properly saved, Alec and his crew reset the show. “Oesypum” was transformed back into Juleka, she was asked a question by Marinette’s Uncle Cheng during a quiet moment through Adrien’s translation. She answered with fully honesty, and he “rewarded” her by renaming his Celestial Soup to “Soup de Bòidhchead” (paying respect to her Scottish heritage).
From the outside of Le Grand Paris, a butterfly-themed hero overwatched his students, reveling in their happiness atop a nearby building, all the while knowing a bigger battle was to come.
Even after Hawkmoth.
Chapter 3: A Prepared Poetic Proposition: My “Favorite Ship” Prompt!
“It all started in Lycée, true,
And I was awed when meeting you,
You were a ball of smiles and energy, too,
I just never wanna be leaving you!
I fell in love, it was sort of scaring me,
I wondered why you didn’t see me as more than caring, see,
I’m glad that we’re together now; not just friends,
And I’ll protect you, mo ghaol , until the end!
I enjoyed dinner dates with you; both fancy and greasy,
It didn’t matter, though; both of us thought the other was dreamy!
Remember that time that we came to camp?
We were often dared by this guy who camped…
Often! You beat him at golf with a last birdie,
But you showed mercy, just made him do thirty…
Pushups! My love for you will never be completin’,
I’ll give you a greetin’ with the royal treatment!
Are we in agreement? You deserve it all, sweetie,
Whether on the streets or in the sheets, see!
We’ve been through the hard, we’ve been through the easy,
And if I can ask this, it would be pleasing…
I wanna ask you this so with you they will bury me,
Would you, aingeal gaoil, kindly marry me?”
-Juleka Couffaine, to her angel
Chapter 4: Lens-ing A Hand: My "Pictures" Prompt!
“...and I think I’m in love with her.”
Being a person who was supposed to learn and change the way she viewed something, Juleka’s paradigm was much different then it had been at the beginning of the school year; the same applied to the one before ( especially the one before, what with the introduction to magic, Miraculouses, and the like).
Juleka and Rose had seen movies where one person likes two people, and can’t decide. Sometimes one of them would be a bad decision, while the other is a good decision. Sometimes they’re both good, sometimes they’re both bad.
Juleka hadn’t thought to wonder what it would be like to be both of the people Rose loved; she never thought she’d have to turn down her crush even though her crush liked her back (whether she knew it or not).
Things change, though - whether for better or for worse, they always do.
One day, as Tigear Bhiora, she had been doing dual patrol with another heroine named Arnab Sarie (wielder of the Rabbit) when she heard the snap of a camera going off. Landing on a building, she peered off the edge and feasted her eyes on her crush holding a camera around her neck. The camera almost instantly greeted with another click. Thankfully, it wasn’t a flash camera; she might have stumbled off the building!
Summoning her courage, she launched herself off the building and landed in front of Rose.
“Hi there,” she greeted, “I couldn’t help but wonder what the deal was with your camera. Did Alya recruit you for the Ladyblog or something?”
Rose just giggled, and Tigear had to close up for a second so that she didn’t swoon. Civilian x Hero ships were generally bad ideas, after all; the more experienced Ladybug advised against mixing civilian and superheroine work, and even though Chat Noir wanted to know who she was, he respected her wishes and followed the rule as well.
“I want her to fall in love with me before she reveals my identity, Tigger,” he had once told her (Tigger was her Chat Noir Moniker™ ; every member of their team probably had one), “and it would be bad in multiple ways for me to seek out her identity.”
Tigear was not much different in her situation; being essentially cockblocked in their superpowered identities was something both feline heroes bonded over, though Juleka was not entirely sure if Ladybug was in love with whoever her blonde partner was outside the leather. Really, it wasn’t her business…
Tigear was taken out of the unpleasant reminders when Rose, bless her heart, answered the question from earlier.
“Sort of… I’m working with Alya on her blog, but only for the non-Ladybug/Chat Noir section. I’ve been tailing Souris Audacieuse, Arnab Sarie and you for quite some time now - I’m not surprised that you’re the first one to notice, though…”
The last part of that statement confused Tigear. She couldn’t help but inquire, “Why me?”
A blush spread across Rose’s face at approximately the speed of Chat when he saw Ladybug get hurt. “I think you’re more clever than Ladybug sometimes, but you barely voice your opinion in battle. Everyone thinks you’re supposed to go wild, being the tiger wielder and all, but I think you could do great if you were the brain and the brawn in battles!”
Tigear humbly blushed, though hers was ever-so-slightly slower. The two would have continued to converse, but the chosen of Betti’s communicator rang. Picking it up, the tiger wielder was informed of a robbery going on. Turning to Rose, she told her goodbye.
The girl in question just smiled. “You wanna meet me here next Friday, at… 11:30 p.m. sound good?”
Tigear nodded hurriedly, and took off for the bank where things were going down. Rose just smiled to herself, before suddenly gaining a serious face, hiding in a nearby alley, calling out her kwami Svinn, and transforming into Tigear’s best friend Energisk Vildsvin.
As Rose, my bestie is Juleka, the blonde mused to herself, but Tigear… she’s another story entirely, right ?
Or was it?
Chapter 5: Hairy Situations: My "Hair" Prompt!
Nowadays, Chloe and Juleka usually were neutral towards each other. While it was true that the ex-brat had been disliked by the one dreaming of being a makeup artist before Chloe got her act together, the two reached that Switzerland-esque pact once the blonde did.
It was true that she still had much to learn; nevertheless, when she did good things with her classmates, it was usually indulging with their interests. Most of the time, Chloe had tried to be quieter about it (she’d been raised in a diplomatic environment, after all); THIS, though… this was too far.
After all, Chloe thought, just because Juleka wanted to work with cosmetics didn’t mean she could neglect her hair.
Juleka had been about to step inside the lycee when she was snatched by her hair, dragged inside and into the nearest bathroom by a seemingly furious Chloe, with a confused Sabrina following behind.
“What in the- what’s happening, Chloe?” A flabbergasted Juleka stammered.
“I hate to act like how I used to, Juleka, but your hair's a mess! It’s like it’s your first time doing pigtails or something! I’m fixing it!”
Juleka could only blush. Chloe’s mouth proceeded to drop like a rock.
“No way… is this really your first time doing tails?”
“On my own, yes. I can do tails for other people, but I can’t do it for myself. I’ve had pigtails before, though; my Mom did them for me as a child. Really, I'm wearing them because today would be Ladybug Appreciation Day, but the fight is thankfully over, so I put them up in reminiscence of whoever that was under the mask.”
“TODAY IS WHAT ?!” Chloe just about shrieked, making Juleka jump a little.
“ You forgot ?!”
“It has been 3 weeks, okay?”
Juleka couldn’t help it. Chloe just groaned, and started doing her hair. Soon, she had “proper” pigtails.
Now both girls looked awkwardly at each other.
“You know how nuit de bal is coming up?” Juleka began hesitantly.
“Would you do my hair again when that rolls around?”
Chloe smiled, almost gratefully. Many people were still distrustful of the blonde.
“I’d love to!”
Chapter 6: Visibility: My "Family" Prompt!
Warning: Internalized Lesbophobia. If this might prove hurtful, you might want to skip this fic.
Ladybug and Chat Noir were getting their butts kicked, and it was all her fault.
When Juleka came out as a lesbian to Luka, he’d been accepting (to her immense relief); the problem was that she’d been targeted out for bullying by some new rich dude named Kevin lately, and Luka had been on the edge.
Fortunately, Chloe had become much nicer when Kevin showed himself; Kevin had started to bully her as well, and after being forced to walk a few miles in her now ex-targets’ shoes, (Kevin’s father had taken Andre’s position as Mayor, so Chloe lost quite the bit of power while he gained the aforementioned power), she understood the error of her ways, causing her to attempt to fix her behavior and start apologizing to everybody she’d hurt, especially the people akumatized by her.
Kevin filled Chloe’s old role and then some. Chloe had been bad, sure, but she never had hurt someone physically before. Kevin had tried some “traditional alpha male tactics” such as locker-stuffing Max and giving Rose a wedgie. When a vehement Juleka attempted to talk with him (still peacefully, mind you; she was not lost on the message behind Undertale when she played it), he shooed her off with sexist comments and whatnot. It didn’t stop there, though; he clearly also bullied the info out of someone in another class, because he learned she was gay and posted degrading slurs on her locker the next day. Nobody but him got a kick out of it, but it really hurt her anyway.
Luka was infuriated when he found out everything, and the coupled feelings of fury and powerlessness created a beacon of opportunity for Hawkmoth; thus, Ferocast was created.
His weather-based powers were not so bad, really - pure bolts of electricity were easily dodged and the rain did little to damper them - but being an anthropomorphic wolf that flew on a cloud like a greek god made you hard to catch and fight. It looked like the battle was one of attrition for Juleka’s brother and a battle of survival for the two heroes and Vildsvin, who had joined in.
Hawkmoth might actually win this time, Juleka thought to herself, and it’s because I’m a freaking lesbian . Steeling herself, she only now remembered that she had ways to fix the problem.
After hiding in a safe place close enough to arrive quickly but far enough to not get caught in the action, she gave a tiny cue for her kwami. Betti flew out of her covert spot in Juleka’s bag.
“Are you going to be alright, Juju?” Betti asked, but even though the concern was clear as day on her face, Juleka was too wrapped up in her own thoughts to notice that.
“Betti,” Juleka tonelessly snarled, “ atharraich mi .”
When Tigear Bhiora joined the battle, she was almost immediately forced to dodge Vildsvin being thrown at her. The poor pig wielder would have bowled her over, nevermind how small she was. Tigear bent down and checked on her.
“You alright, Vildy? You nearly blew me over!” asked Tigear. Vildsvin groaned, but got up despite the pain.
“Yeah, I’m fine! It appears Luka became the big bad wolf, but he’s not headed for the pigs’ houses… we don’t know his motives.”
“I know; he’s most likely headed for that jerk Kevin’s house. Kevin posted some mean things on m- his sister’s locker, and he must have snapped.”
“I don’t like him very much. He’s hurt my civilian form as well, so I hold some grudges ag-”
The voice was so innocent, and yet so empathetic for Tigear that she knew it was Rose.
Before either of them could respond, a voice dark and gruff but somehow soft and familiar spoke up.
The akuma that was her brother had trapped Ladybug in a cage of ice and knocked Chat Noir out cold, and he’d been about to take the latter’s ring when he’d overheard the conversation.
Tigear knew that the time to face the music had come. Standing up, she spoke.
“Luka, this isn’t the brother that cares for your sister as much as I know he does. We can find a peaceful solution; please, put down your akumatized item.”
“I can get revenge for you, Juleka,” Ferocast's deep voice replied, “I could solve the problem that hurts you!”
“Would killing him really fix the pain he’s caused?” Tigear questioned.
Before anybody could react (clearly even Hawkmoth was too shocked or something), a furious Ferocast grabbed the jewel on his forehead - his prized guitar pick! - chucked it on the ground, and stomped the thing to pieces.
Ladybug could purify the akuma. She could fix the damages that Ferocast had caused.
Ladybug could not take away the memories being Ferocast had caused. Was that for the better? Who really knows…
But Juleka had intentions to help her brother through the pain. Whether as Tigear Bhiora or as Juleka, she was going to be the best help she could be!
After all, someone had to put the Bhiora in “Ultraviolet.”
Chapter 7: The Kids Are (Going To Be) Alright: My "Future" Prompt!
All in all, Juleka was happy to see everyone at their reunion once more. Being here was a good excuse to get away from her work as a makeup artist (not that she hated it; she just hated Vincent, the older, creepy photographer who wouldn’t leave her alone despite how many times she told the perv she wasn’t interested in men whatsoever).
Her classmates always appeared to be more successful than she was. Ivan and Nino were a musical duo that wowed crowds, while their respective hairstylist/reporter girlfriends cheered them on when possible. Marinette had achieved her dream as leader of Gabriel (well, after the Hawkmoth era was over, she’d rebuilt it as MDC Fashion ), while her husband Adrien actually became the head of their very school’s Science Department. Lila had become a police interrogator (ironically enough) and was engaged to forensic artist Nathanael. Chloe ran her dad’s hotel with Sabrina at her side, and lastly, Kim had his own TV show with not only his best friends Alix and Max as coworkers, but his girlfriend Ondine was the co-host!
At least he has nice coworkers, Juleka bemoaned to herself in the corner of their old gymnasium. All her old friends and family were successful and happy, and she was stuck at the bottom with sickos like Aza.
Rose stood above her - her face was a face that Juleka had missed for too long holding a concerned look that she could look at for even shorter a time. This was her crush back in high school, and she’d never really recovered from it - she hadn’t found interest in most girls she’d dated since graduation.
“...do you want to talk about it?” Rose carefully asked.
Juleka just nodded. The two found a secluded spot where they’d had quiet moments in the past’s worse days. Before Juleka knew it, she was crying and pouring everything out to Rose; about Vincent, about her jealousy towards everyone else, about the struggle to hold her home, everything that was going wrong for her in life.
After Juleka was finished pouring everything out, there was a while of peace. No words, not much crying, just quiet peace.
Suddenly, Rose lit up.
“You should move in with me! I’ve been trying to find someone to split rent with; would you like that?”
Juleka, with those quiet but sparkling eyes that Rose wanted her to have all the time, just smiled and nodded.