As a blue minivan approached Le Parc des Princes, it was clear to its driver and passengers that they were arriving at their destination, because of the sound of music in the air. Plus, the whole circus that had been assembled around the stadium, and the number of people that were heading in its direction, was a giveaway to what was going on there. Originally called Stade Vélodrome du Parc des Princes, the stadium was inaugurated in 1897. Situated in the 16th arrondissement of Paris, the area was a forested parkland used by the royal family before the French Revolution, which gave Parc des Princes its name. The stadium itself was the third stadium built there, and it was designed and built by Roger Taillibert and Siavash Teimouri, opening in 1972, having become the permanent home of Paris Saint-Germain in 1973. Besides receiving numerous football matches, from time to time, it also received concerts. And on that night, it was going to receive two of the greatest names in the world of music for thousands of fans, who were hoping to see one of the best concerts in their lives.
When the blue minivan stopped, its driver turned on the blinkers, before turning his attention to the passengers that were on the backseats.
"Now, remember Alix. Be careful, don't spend too much money, and when you see that the concert is almost ending, send me a text, and I'll come and pick you and Kim up." -Mr. Kubdel told his daughter. –"If I can't come, it will be your mother to do so." -he added.
"Thanks for bringing us, sir." -Kim thanked him.
"Yeah, thanks for giving us a ride, dad. And don't worry, I'll text you." –Alix declared.
"Anytime, Alix. I hope you and your friends have fun tonight." -Mr. Kubdel told Alix. –"Still, I don't like that you came with your face painted like that." -he said. –"This isn't Halloween."
"Oh, come on, dad. There are lots of people that have their faces painted. It's all part of the show. Just look outside." -Alix told her father. From the list of face-paints, she had chosen the one that had belonged to Eric "The Fox" Carr, while Kim chose the one Marinette had baptized with the name "The Cyborg". –"KISS fans paint their faces, to show the band their appreciation and devotion. Think about it how there are tribes and ancient people who did the same for their leaders. It's the same thing." -she said.
"I can understand that. But that doesn't mean I have to like it." -Mr. Kubdel said. –"Anyways, you best be going, before I begin rambling about something else. Have fun." -he said, as Alix opened the car's door.
Closing the car door behind her, Alix and Kim watched as her dad's minivan drove away. When the minivan merged with the traffic and disappeared, the two teenagers looked around and felt like they had just stepped into a whole new world. Everywhere they looked, they saw something KISS-related. There were also a couple of banners and posters advertising Jagged Stone, but most of it was related to KISS, which did not surprise them, given they were the main attraction that day. Just like it had happened to them on the day they attended Jagged Stone's concert, they could feel the unique atmosphere surrounding them, which was charged with electricity.
"You know something? Your dad can be a major buzzkiller." -Kim told Alix.
"I agree with you on that. It's like my dad was never a kid himself. Sometimes, I wonder if he hatched already old and too serious for his own good." -Alix declared, between chuckles. –"But who cares what he thinks? I can't believe that we're finally here!" -she exclaimed. –"And this time, hopefully, we'll be able to enjoy the concert, without being called on a certain kind of emergency."
"Don't say that, because you can still jinx it." -Kim warned her. –"And as much as I like to use my powers, unlike you, I don't want to spend my night chasing after one of Hawkdouche's minions." -he told her. –"Today, I just want to spend the night listening to good music and hanging out with everyone."
"Does that include me?" -a voice was heard. It was Kim's kwami, Imp, talking from the pocket he was hiding in.
"Of course, it does, man. Why do you think I brought you?" -Kim told Imp.
"I don't know… maybe because…" -Daria said, when he was interrupted.
"Don't even try it, Daria!" -Imp shouted at the dragonfly kwami. –"Whatever you're going to say, don't say it!" -he said. He knew just how Daria loved to push people and kwamis' buttons, just for the fun of it.
"Guys, guys, guys… no talking like that. The last thing we need is people finding out about you." -Alix told the two kwamis in an ushered voice, quieting them. –"Now, let's be quiet, and see if we can find the rest of the gang in this madness." -she said, as they began to walk, following the fans that kept arriving.
Most people they passed by were both wearing KISS make-up and t-shirts from previous tours from the band. And unlike what most people would think, the fans were not just people in their fifties and sixties, but rather people in their thirties, twenties, and even kids. Kim and Alix passed by several families, who seemed to nurture a liking for the band. But among all those people, there were also people without the make-up and wearing regular clothes. And occasionally, one person wearing a Jagged Stone t-shirt passed by them. Seeing all those people, the two of them quickly realized that if any of their friends was already there, it would take them too long to find them. As they waited for any of them to answer, they noticed the waiting line was already going around the fence that surrounded the stadium and its grounds. Still, neither one, nor the other was worried about that, because with their VIP passes, they would be among the first ones to enter, without the need to wait in line, like the rest.
"Any luck?" -Alix asked Kim.
"No. I can't get through to Max or Nino." –Kim told her. –"I'm going to try and call Adrien, now." -he said. –"What about you? Any luck?"
"Nope. Alya and Mylene aren't answering either." -Alix said. –"I'm going to try and Juleka now." -she said.
"Or, you could ask one of us if we could feel any of the other kwamis nearby." -Daria told Alix. –"Do you guys keep forgetting that we kwamis can feel the presence of other kwamis, when they're nearby?" -he reminded her.
"You're right, I forgot about that." -Alix smiled. –"Can you tell me if you can feel any around here?" -she asked her kwami.
Focusing, Daria tried to sense the energy that emanated from the other kwamis, and see if any of them were nearby. He immediately felt Imp's energy, but he ignored it, and continued to try and sense it. It did not help that there was a lot of noise around them. The dragonfly kwami, was used to using that skill, while there was silence. Still, he tried his best to sense the energy signature of his fellow kwamis, and after nearly twenty seconds, he felt the energy of two of them. Just as all kwmais were different, so were their energy signatures. And the energy signature he felt, belonged to Tikki and Plagg, the ladybug and the black cat kwamis, respectively. Telling Alix to head in the direction he was sensing their energy signatures, both her and Kim did not take long to find the kwamis and their holders.
"Hey, lovebirds!" -Alix called out Marinette and Adrien, when she saw them, talking to one another, while holding hands.
"Hey!" -Adrien exclaimed. –"Guess we're not the only ones here, anymore." -he told Marinette.
"Guess not." -Marinette said, before turning her attention to Alix and Kim. –"Whoa, you guys look awesome. Especially you, Kim. That face-paint looks amazing on you."
"Well, you designed it. Though, I'll admit that it maximizes my natural handsomeness." -Kim declared.
"Should I be jealous of him?" -Adrien asked Marinette, in a sarcastic, yet playful tone.
"Of course, not, you silly kitty." -Marinette smiled at the blond. –"You know I only have eyes for you." -she said.
"Hey! I thought that was my line." -Adrien joked.
"Last time I checked; you didn't own its copyrights." -Marinette told him, playing along.
"Okay, okay, enough, guys. We know you're both in love, but could you take it down a notch?" -Alix asked her friends, in an amused tone.
"For once, I'm with her." -Kim agreed with Alix. –"I'm happy that you two are dating, but keep that for when it's just the two of you." -he said.
"Alright, we'll stop." -Marinette giggled. –"I guess they just can't handle our love, Adrien." -she told her boyfriend.
"Undoubtedly. Sometimes I think that they would prefer, if we were still in the dark, regarding our crush on one another." -Adrien laughed, just to tease both Alix and Kim, who he knew, were not big fans of that kind of conversation.
"Well, I for one, I'm glad you two aren't in the dark about one another, anymore." -a voice they all knew, said. The voice belonged to Alya, who showed up wearing a "Catman" face-paint, along with Nino, who chose to wear one of the face-paints created by Marinette. In his case, he went with the one she baptized as "Lucky Clover". –"Can you imagine what it would be, if you two were still trying to see if you loved one another, when everyone else knew that you were made for each other?" -she joked.
"My girl is right. Everyone knew you were made for one another… everyone, except you." -Nino joked about it. –"But changing subjects, are you four the only ones here? As anyone arrived yet?" -he asked them group.
"As far as we know, we are." -Adrien answered him.
"Well, I hope the rest don't take long. According to what was on the passes, we're meeting both Jagged Stone and KISS in 40 minutes." -Alix said.
"Relax, they'll be here. Just give them a little more time to get here." -Nino told her. –"In the meantime, I think I'm going to buy me one of those t-shirts and put it on." -he said. –"Want to accompany me, foxy fox?"
"You betcha, turtle boy." -Alya smiled at him. –"But, I thought you were broke." -she remembered.
"And I was. But my dad gave me, my allowance a little bit earlier." -Nino answered her, with a smile on his face. –"What about you, guys? Want to join us?" -he asked them.
By the time they had finished buying the shirts, the rest of the gang had arrived, joining them, and also buying shirts for themselves. They all wanted to be dressed for the occasion, even if that meant spending a few Euros on overpriced clothes. It was not every day that they had the opportunity to meet world-renowned rock stars and spend a little time with them. Still, they knew that that they would only have to spend money on those shirts. The VIP backstage passes they had, granted them numerous merchandise articles that would be sent to their respective houses, so they would not have to carry them around, during the concert.
Finished shopping, they all made their way to the front of the line. It was nearly time for the meet and greet event, and their passes allowed them to be the first ones to do so. As they walked next to the line, to get to the front of it, they all heard all kinds of comments addressed to them. Most of them were praises for the wicked face-paints they were wearing. But they were also several insults, with people wondering why they were passing them ahead. Most of the gang ignored the insults, but some of them did not hesitate in shouting back at those who had decided to shout insults at them. When they finally reached the front of the line, they all showed the security guards their passes on their cell phones. After confirming their authenticity, the men told them all to wait, telling them, someone would come to get them. To pass the time, they all decided to take a couple of photos or make a video, with their cell phones. And as always, when trapped in a line, Max decided to entertain his friends with a couple of trivia bits. These were all about KISS and Jagged Stone, that he had been reading for the past two days.
"Did you guys know that KISS fans call themselves KISS Army?" -Max asked them.
"That explains all those shirts that say that." -Ivan said, as he finished changing into the shirt he had bought.
"Come on, if you're going to start quizzing us and throwing trivia bits at us, then, at least give us some that will make us think a bit, Max." -Kim told his best-friend.
"Okay, you want a tricky one… do you know what was Eric "The Fox" Carr's real name?" -Max asked.
"That one, I know. It was Paul Charles Caravello. And he died on the same day as Freddie Mercury." -Juleka said.
"That's cheating! You're like a music encyclopaedia!" -Kim exclaimed.
"No, it's not. Juleka just happens to know a lot about music. It's not cheating, if you know things." -Rose playfully defended her girlfriend.
"Well, people who know so much about music, should give others a chance to answer." -Kim said, as he looked at Nino. –"And yeah, I'm also saying that to you." -he pointed at him. –"You practically only talk about music."
"Something tells me that you are afraid of people finding out that you don't know a thing about music." -Nino joked with Kim. –"Hey, there's no reason to be embarrassed about it. I bet that if the subject was sports, you would beat me in two seconds."
"That I would!" -Kim answered in a cocky voice tone.
"Can we get back to the trivia bits and the curiosities?" -Mylene asked them. –"I really want to hear a few more." -she said.
"Thank you, Mylene. At least someone, enjoys hearing these things." -Max said.
"Oh, come on, Max, you don't actually believe that we don't like hearing you telling us those things, do you?" -Alya asked him.
"No. I just believe that you find it annoying." -Max sighed.
"Well, it is a bit annoying… but that doesn't mean, we don't like to hear it from time to time." -Sabrina told him. –"Plus, when you do it, it helps to pass the time a little faster." -she said.
"I'm with Sabrina on that one." -Chloe agreed. –"Go on, tell us another one." -she said.
"Never thought I would see the day that I would hear Chloe begging me to tell a trivia bit." -Max thought to himself. –"Alright… do you know why Jagged Stone's favourite colour is purple?" -he asked everyone.
A few more minutes went by, along with a couple of trivia bits, courtesy of Max, before someone came to get them. The person in question was a young girl, probably 18 or 19 years old, and was wearing a KISS shirt, and carrying several concert badges in one hand, and wristbands on the other. Signalling the security guards to let them through, one by one, they were all searched, to see if they were carrying any weapons or dangerous objects in them or in their backpacks. Once the guards finished doing their job, they were allowed to go forward, where the girl slapped a wristband with the KISS logo on their right wrist, as well as handing them a concert badge, which they put around their necks. She quickly explained them that that badge granted them access to backstage, which they would visit a little later, as well as the Golden Circle. She also informed them that she was going to escort them to one of the rooms where the first meet and greet would take place, after which they would be taken to a second one, where the second meet and greet would happen. They would first meet KISS, and then, they would meet Jagged Stone.
"If you could please follow me." -the girl told them.
Following her, they had a couple of questions regarding the meet and greet, which she wasted no time answering. She told them that they would get twenty minutes with KISS, and twenty minutes with Jagged Stone. She pointed out that selfies and photos were allowed with the musicians, and that they would sign maximum two objects per person. This was nothing they were not expecting. They did not say it, but they were more exited to meet Jagged Stone, than KISS. As they walked down the corridor, they all began asking what kind of questions they would ask, and how they would react to them. To say they were not slightly nervous, would be a huge lie. They all had their hearts filled with joy and anticipation, pounding inside their chests. Some were more nervous than others, but they were all nervous.
The inside of the stadium was like a maze, and without a guide, they would all get lost inside it. The corridors all looked the same. Still, their nerves prevented them from thinking about that. And instead, it made them shiver with anticipation, as the craziest things came to their minds.
"Can't forget to ask them all to sign the t-shirt for Luka, can't forget to ask them all to sign the t-shirt for Luka… come on, Juleka, stop repeating yourself. You won't' forget such a thing." -Juleka told herself.
"I'm sweating so much! If I keep sweating like that, I'll have to retouch the make-up. I wonder if I brought the inks with me? I must have… if I hadn't, Tikki would have told me by now." -Marinette thought to herself.
"This is going to be epic." -Nino thought to himself.
"It's going to be so nice to see Jagged Stone again! It's been nearly a year, since I last saw him!" -Chloe mused to herself.
They were almost at the room where the meet and greet would take place, when fate decided to intervene and give them a little gift they were not expecting. Turning left, they bumped into Jagged Stone, who was coming from the opposite direction. Seeing them, he immediately recognized Marinette, even with the face-paint she was wearing.
"Whoa, Marinette… I wasn't expecting to meet you and your friends for another half hour, or so." -Jagged smiled at her.
"U-Uh… H-Hello!" -Marinette greeted him with a nervous smile. –"Calm yourself, Marinette, calm yourself. There's no reason to be nervous. It's not the first time you see Jagged Stone in person." -she thought to herself.
"Still nervous to be around me, huh?" -Jagged Stone joked. –"I already told you, if you want to, you can call me Uncle Jagged, if it helps you. I won't mind it." -he told her.
"M-Maybe some other time." -Marinette said, trying not to sound as nervous as she really was.
"Well, alright, but remember, the offer still stands." -Jagged reminded her.
Neither parties thought that something like that was going to happen, especially the girl who was guiding them. Seeing that happening, she did not know what to do. She did not want to interrupt Jagged Stone, but she still had a job to do, and to do it, she would have to interrupt him.
"Uh… excuse me, Mr. Stone, but…"
"Oh, sorry, you were taking them to the room where the meet and greet is going to take place, am I right? Well, you don't have to worry. I'll take them to the room, myself in a couple of minutes. And if anyone asks, I was the one who insisted on doing it, and I'll take full responsibility for it." -Jagged Stone told the girl, who he saw was beginning to look a little nervous. –"It's okay, trust me." -he told her.
The girl was a little hesitant in doing as Jagged was asking her. She had her orders and disobeying such orders, could cost her, her job. A couple of seconds went by, before she decided on what to do. Grabbing the walkie-talkie, she had with her, she called her supervisor and explained it to him what had happened, and asked him how to proceed. After listening to it, her supervisor told her to allow Jagged to do as he had asked her, and to go back outside, to wait to bring another group for the meet and greet. Doing as she was told, she left them, and went back through the corridor they had come from, leaving Jagged Stone with the Miraculous gang.
"Well, as I was saying, I was not expecting to see you and your friends, a little bit later." -Jagged Stone said.
"Same thing with us." -Marinette admitted.
"Jagged!" -Chloe said, as she hugged him. –"It's so good to see you again! Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you! Thank you so much for getting us the tickets and the passes!" -she exclaimed. The blonde had told herself that she was going to thank the rock star for what he did for her. She was only going to tell him a few words, but at the last moment, she allowed her emotions to get the best of her.
"I-It's also g-good to see you. I'm glad I was able to help you." -Jagged told Chloe. –"I admit that it has been a while, since the last time I saw you." -he said, remembering that time. –"Her eyes… they clearly changed. They don't look like the eyes of an impulsive little brat, like I remember them. I think Marinette was telling me the truth. She has changed."
"Chloe, come on, don't do that." -Sabrina told her in a playful tone, as she pulled her away from Jagged Stone. –"You probably scared him." -she whispered to her ear.
"No, I didn't. He knows I do this, every time I see him." -Chloe whispered back the redhead.
"I guess she's a little too excited about this." -Mylene stated, giggling nervously.
"It's okay. I'm already used to that. Plus, nice shirt. You have good taste" -Jagged told Mylene, noticing she was wearing one of the t-shirts with his trademark logo on it. –"So this is the whole class, huh? Well, it's nice to see that you all like good music and… whoa!" -he exclaimed, when he felt something big slither against his left leg.
What Jagged felt was the head of his pet crocodile Fang. Somehow, he had escaped from Jagged's dressing room and decided to go look for his master. Upon seeing so many people around Jagged, the crocodile decided to greet them in his own unique way. Jump on them, and lick their hands.
"H-Hey, that tickles!" -Marinette giggled, as Fang licked her hands, covering them in drool.
"Hold on, there, King Croc, that's my girlfriend you're licking there." -Adrien chuckled, as he helped Marinette getting back up, while patting Fang on the head. –"You're a good crocodile, yes you are." -he told Fang, as he stopped licking Marinette's hands and walked towards Juleka.
"Oh, I get it, you want to be petted. Alright, we'll pet you then." -Juleka said, kneeling in front of the crocodile and petted him, which earned her a friendly lick from Fang.
It did not take long for everyone in the gang to start petting Fang. They were used to seeing crocodiles in wild life documentaries, where they are depicted as ferocious beasts, who preyed on any unsuspected victims, who dared to approach the waters where the crocodiles lived. So, to see one crocodile who did not behave like that, and who behaved more like a puppy, than a wild crocodile, it was cause for joy. Between laughs and giggles, which were music to Fang's ears, everyone enjoyed petting Jagged's pet crocodile, who could not help but to feel like the centre of attention. Seeing this, Jagged was slightly impressed by what was happening.
"He must really like you all, to act like that. He usually snarls and growls at people who aren't nice, or have second intentions towards me or anyone close to me." -Jagged said. –"Of course, he's also a sucker for attention." -he told them, when he saw someone else approaching them. –"Let me guess, you were on the phone and he managed to give you the slip, right?"
"I'm afraid so." -Penny told him. –"Still, I don't know how he managed to open the door with only his leash." -she confessed.
"I told you, Fang's smarter than the average crocodile." -Jagged told Penny. –"Besides there's nothing he won't do for a little attention." -he said, as he looked at the crocodile, being petted by Marinette and her friends.
Surrounding Fang, the whole group continued to take turns petting him and even rubbing his belly, which Rose and Mylene found out that he loved, when he turned around. They were almost hypnotized by how tame and meek the crocodile was. Never in their lives, they thought they would see such a thing.
"I guess you found yourselves a new friend." -Jagged told them. –"Sorry about the drool. Sometimes I think he drools more than a St. Bernard." -he joked.
"Here, I think you're going to need these." -Penny said, as she pulled from her purse a box of baby wipes. She always carried around one, in case Fang drooled over someone he was not supposed to.
"Thank you." -Nino thanked, as he took one of the wipes from the box.
"Thank you." -Marinette thanked Penny.
"You must be Marinette." -Penny said. –"I'm Penny Rolling. Jagged's agent. Nice to meet you and your friends" -she said.
"Likewise." -Marinette said.
"Well, before we were interrupted, I was going to ask you to present me your friends. I already know Chloe here, but not the rest." -Jagged told Marinette. –"So, care to introduce me to them?" -he smiled.
"Of course!" -Marinette said. –"Uh… this is Alya Cesaire, my best-friend. Remember the hoodie that on my bedroom the other day? It was for her." -she declared.
"So, you're the lucky girl who got to keep that amazing Rena Rouge-inspired hoodie, huh? Well, let me just tell you that it's a pleasure to meet you, and that I'm also jealous. Your best-friend has a gift for sewing, because when I saw it, it made me wish the hoodie she made for you, was for me." -Jagged Stone told her.
"It's also a pleasure to meet you, as well." -Alya smiled. –"I can't believe I'm meeting Jagged Stone! Oh, come on, girl, get a hold of yourself! Just act naturally!" -she told herself. She did not want Jagged to think she was nervous about meeting him. –"And yes, Marinette is incredibly talented."
"Super talented, that's more like it." -Nino told her. –"Hello, I'm Nino Lahiffe. Pleasure to meet you, Mr. Stone. Big fan of your work."
"Nice to meet you as well." -Jagged said, as he shook his hand. –"I can tell you like music, just from those headphones. Those are quite expensive." -he pointed out.
"They are his lucky headphones. Not only is Nino a very big fan of music, he's also an amateur DJ." -Alya told Jagged.
"You don't say?" -Jagged asked Nino.
"It's just a hobby…" -Nino said. –"Just a hobby?! Oh, come on, dude, what are you saying?! You love music! You want to be one of the best DJ's in the world, and you can't even say that to the man?!" -he thought to himself. –"… but it's one that I would really like to turn into a career."
"He's really talented." –Alya added.
"Well, if you have a talent, nurture it and then use it to do something incredible. That's what I always say." -Jagged declared.
One by one, Jagged greeted them all, as Marinette presented the whole group. After introductions were made, and the ice was broken between the teenagers and the musician, Chloe felt like it was a good time for a group photo, even though she knew they would get the opportunity to do that later. Still, no one opposed it, including Jagged.
"Alright, alright, selfie time, everyone! Come on, gather around, I want to see everyone in it." -Chloe said, as she placed her cell phone on the selfie-stick she had brought with her for the effect, and everyone gathered around Jagged Stone, who was then holding Fang. –"Okay, Sabrina stand next to me… Max and Kim, come a little closer… Ivan, you'll have kneel down, so you don't get your head cut-off… and Rose, try to nuzzle yourself against Juleka, just a little bit more… there, perfect!" -she said, as she tried to make everyone appear on the photo. –"Alright, everyone ready? Say cheese!"
After that one selfie, numerous others followed. As much as Chloe had changed, she was still a selfie-maniac, and whenever she had the chance, she would go for it. She needed the perfect selfie, which for her was only the fifth or sixth one she took with her cell phone. She took several with Jagged and with Fang, until the others told her that those were already enough, so they could also take turns taking selfies with the rock star.
"Come on, Chloe, I think you already took enough selfies." -Alix told her.
"Just one more, please!" -Chloe practically begged, while still next to Jagged Stone. –"I promise you, this is the very last one." -she told Jagged.
"Alright, one last. But this better not be like all the other times, when you say that, and then you ask for another one." -Jagged said. –"She has changed, but her habit of taking selfies is still very much the same." -he mused to himself.
"Scouts honour!" -Chloe said
A second after she snapped one last selfie with Jagged, a cell phone was heard. It turned out to be Jagged's. Putting Fang on the floor, he pulled the cell from his pocket and looked at the screen, recognizing the name. It was Aaron "Tuner" Turner, the roadie who was in charge of tuning his guitars. He knew Aaron would never call him, unless there was an emergency with one of the guitars. Answering the call.
"What happened, Tuner?" -Jagged asked him. –"Look, calm down… if you don't calm down, I can't understand what you're saying. Slow down, okay?" -he begged him, waiting for him to calm down. –"Okay, now that you're calmer, answer me this: which one is giving you trouble? Is it Ragnarök? No? Then, is it Queen Sheba? Not that one either? Then which one is it?"
Listening to the conversation, everyone understood that there was some kind of trouble with one of Jagged's guitars. Penny herself began to feel nervous. When things like that happened, it was never a good omen, but the complete opposite of it.
"Calm down. That Les Paul is a troublemaker. Tell me what happened, from the start." -Jagged asked him, in a calm and pondered voice. –"Okay… I see… well, are you sure you can't fix it?" -he asked. –"Not in time for the concert… well, then, you brought Sobek, didn't you? Awesome! I'll use that one at the start of the concert, then. But, maybe it's best if I tune it myself. No offense, but no one can get her to play the right way, except me. I'll be there in five minutes, then."
"Guess, he won't be accompanying us." -Nathaniel whispered to Nino, as they all heard Jagged talking on the phone.
"Guess not." -Nino agreed, as Jagged ended the call.
"Sorry, everyone, but duty calls. I guess I'll talk to you a little bit later, after you guys meet Paul and the others. Don't be nervous about it." -Jagged told them. –"Take Fang back to my dressing room, Penny. But before you do, be a dear and take them to the room where the meet and greet with Paul and the others is going to be." -he said, before turning to the group. –"I'll see you all in a bit. Just got to make sure that everything is perfect for when I bring the house down."
Following Penny, she took them to the room where they would meet KISS. Before entering, they took the time to say goodbye to Fang, by petting him, once more. As they entered the room, they saw this one was quite large. had been decorated to match the style of the rock band. The walls had been decorated with large posters from the four members, as well as banners, with both the name of the band and the name of the current tour. There were also four leather armchairs symmetrically arranged. If there were any doubts that they were on the right room, all that erased any kind of doubt they could have in their minds. They were all expecting for the members of the band to be there, waiting for them, but that did not happen.
"Guess we're a little too early." -Ivan commented.
"One thing's for certain. These guys don't save on advertisement." –Adrien said. –"Reminds me a bit of what happens when I'm promoting my dad's latest fashion line." -he stated.
"It's a way to decorate room, where you're receiving die-hard fans, I suppose." -Juleka commented, as she looked around. –"I'm sending my brother a photo of this room, just to tease him a little." -she said, as she pulled her cell phone from her pocket.
"You really are mean." -Rose joked.
"Well, I get to be a little mean, because from the two of us, you're the one who's the nice one." -Juleka winked at her girlfriend, as she took the photo of the room and sent it to Luka.
"What do you think it's keeping them? The girl who was bringing us here, before we bumped into Jagged Stone, was clearly in a hurry to get us here." -Alya pointed out.
Then, suddenly, the lights went out. When this happened, everyone's instincts kicked in. Their minds were telling them to stay on their guard, and be ready for anything, and their bodies responded by the same way, even though they knew that they were not in any kind of danger… or at least, they thought so. A couple of seconds later, the lights began to flash and they heard something exploding, which startled them.
"You wanted the best; you got the best! The hottest band in the land! KISS!" -a voice was heard, echoing all over the room.
When the lights came back, they all saw the air, along with the floor, was filled with confetti of all colours and shapes. And seated on the previously empty armchairs were four men, all dressed in casual clothes, and all of them wearing sunglasses. Even without their make-up on, their faces were easily recognizable. From left to right were Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, Tommy Thayer and Eric Singer, or as they called themselves, The Starchild, The Demon, The Spaceman and The Catman, respectively.
"How did they get there in just a few seconds?! The door was closed, they only had a couple of seconds to do that, and it's impossible for anyone to move that fast… at least, without having superpowers." -Max asked himself.
"Now that's how you make an entrance." -Nino thought to himself. –"Imagine if every time we showed up to fight an Akuma, we did that?"
"Welcome, KISS fans!" -Paul exclaimed.
"Come on, guys! What have I told you before? You can't use these effects, every time you make an entrance, especially, when you're not even in costume yet! If every time you guys find fans, and do that in front of them, it costs you a fortune in confetti bombs, not to mention the smoke bombs and the light show." -a voice was heard.
Entering the room was a man dressed in a black business suit, light-blue shirt and black shoes. He was tall, with a pale complexion. His face had premature lines, a Greek nose, and light black hair. He was Doc McGhee, the manager of KISS, as well as some other big names in the music world. He had heard the entrance the musicians had made, when the teenagers entered the room, and came to see what they had done.
"Oh, come on, don't be such a sourpuss. Our fans are the best in the world, and they deserve to be treated like that, Doc." -Paul told the manager. –"It's always amazing to see the look on fans faces, when we do that. It means we did a good job." -he said, while looking at Max, who was the one who was closest to him.
"But do you really have to do that with every fan?! Do you know just how much money you blew up with this little stunt of yours?" -Doc asked him. –"Believe me, it was enough to pay a lobster dinner for 10 people." -he declared.
"Like we don't have the money to do it. You worry too much." -Gene told him.
"Well, someone has to. If you guys don't, then I have to do it." -Doc declared, as he looked around and saw the amount of confetti on the ground. –"You could have used the cheaper confetti bombs, instead of the deluxe ones!" -he added, as he began calculating the amount of money they would have saved, if they had done that.
It was obvious to anyone who was hearing him, that Doc McGhee was someone, who was obsessed with saving money, wherever he could. But more importantly, he was someone, who was annoyed when someone spent money unnecessarily. And from his speech, it looked to Marinette and the others that KISS enjoyed to spend a little too much money, for his taste.
"You will all have to forgive our manager. He's a little too obsessed with the cost of everything, and with money we spend." -Tommy told the teenagers, some of which could not help but to chuckle.
"Yeah. A little too obsessed, if you ask me." -Eric said. –"It's not like we bought a private island lately, right?" -he joked.
"Very funny, very funny, Eric! But then don't come and cry on my shoulder, when you see a bill with lots of zeros, and you have no idea where it came from!" -Doc said, in exasperation. –"I never get this kind of problems with the Drew Davis Band or with Scorpions… why do I get them, with you? You guys are going to turn my hair white, with all this!" -he exclaimed.
"Even whiter than it already is? Everyone knows you dye your hair, just like us, man." -Paul laughed.
"Very funny, Paul, very funny!" -Doc said, as he left.
As KISS manager stormed out of the room, Marinette and her friends felt like they had just watched a scene out of a sitcom. They had all expected for their meet and greet with KISS to be unique, but not in that way. The whole scene could only be described with the word "unique", for the lack of a better one.
"And, then we're the ones who are the prima donnas." -Eric joked.
"He treats us like we're teenagers." -Gene commented.
"Maybe because we act like teenagers, whenever we're on tour, even though we're older than he is?" -Paul joked. –"But let's not talk about that. Let's talk about you, guys. Welcome. It's an honour to meet you all." -he said, as he turned his attention to the Miraculous gang, and got up to shake hands with everyone.
It did not take long for everyone to start mingling with the band members. Once the ice was broken, it was easier for the member of the Miraculous gang to mingle with the musicians. Just like it happened with Jagged Stone, Paul and the rest of KISS proved to be incredibly nice.
"Love the face-paint you're wearing. You've got great taste." -Pauls told Marinette, who was wearing Paul's signature Starchild face-paint. –"And yours is also really wicked… I'm sure Gene over there is going to say that he loves it." -he told Chloe.
"T-Thank you." -Marinette thanked him.
"Thank you." -Chloe smiled.
"Although I must say that those most of your friends are wearing are also very cool… that lighting absolutely rocks." -Paul admitted, complimenting Sabrina on her face-paint. –"They may not be official, but they are clearly KISS-inspired and for me, that proves that the spirit of KISS is present in them." -he said. –"It's always nice to see our fans doing these things."
"Thank you so much." -Sabrina thanked Paul.
"Marinette came up with those, while creating the one Jagged Stone is going to wear tonight." -Adrien declared.
"She's a natural, when it comes to these things." -Chloe added.
"Really? Then you must be the artist that Jagged was talking about. He wasn't kidding, when he told us that you are really talented. The face-paint you came up for him is amazing, and so are these your friends are wearing." -Paul told Marinette. –"He also told us that you want to work in fashion. Is that true?" -he asked her.
"Y-Yes. That's my dream." -Marinette answered, as she kept smiling at the lead singer of KISS.
"Well, I do know one thing. I do know that dreams are always possible, if you work hard, and have the talent, along with a little bit of luck on your side." -Paul told her, making her smile. –"Trust me. When we began as a band, there were dozens of critics who said that we wouldn't last a year, and look at us. Almost 50 years later, and we're still alive and kicking." -he said.
"Oh, she knows. And she's got the talent to do so." -Adrien said. –"I don't think we have been introduced yet… Adrien Agreste." -he said, as he shook hands with Paul.
"Adrien Agreste? You aren't by any chance related to…" -Paul asked.
"Gabriel Agreste? He's my dad." -Adrien finished his sentence.
"I knew those eyes of yours looked familiar. New York City is crawling with giant posters of yours. I didn't recognize you because of that make-up." -Paul told him. –"Well, let me tell you this, you've got a really talented girlfriend, not to mention beautiful, if you allow me to say it."
"Oh, thank you." -Marinette said. –"If I wasn't wearing this face-paint, I would probably be as red as a tomato, right now." -she thought to herself.
While Marinette, Adrien, Chloe and Sabrina continued to talk to Paul Stanley, Kim, Alix and Mylene were busy snapping a couple of selfies with Gene Simmons, while also asking him a couple of questions.
"Okay, okay, one question, do you burn yourself, while spitting fire the way you do, every concert?" -Kim asked Gene.
"Constantly." -Gene answered. –"I mean, when it happens, it's mostly first degree burns on the face and sometimes on the lips. It's not worse than a sunburn. Plus, the make-up helps to protect my skin, and I apply a flame retardant in spray to my face, before I spit out flames, just in case." -he explained.
"You probably burned your eyebrows a couple of times, over the years, right?" -Alix asked him.
"To tell you the truth, no. But over the years, there were a couple of times when I accidentally burned Paul's wig with the flames. Luckily, it was never a big deal, and we've learned that whenever I do that, the others stay far away, so they don't get with by the flames." -Gene explained
"By the way, there's one thing I wanted ask you. Why the "Demon"? Why did you choose that name for your stage persona? What's the story behind it?" -Kim asked him. While researching the band, he could not find the answer to that question he asked.
"To tell you the truth, I don't even remember it anymore. It was a long time ago. But one thing I do know. It was because of my love for comic books, like it happened with the rest of the band." -Gene answered, as he posed for a selfie with Kim.
"And you do your own make-up, right?" -Mylene asked.
"Indeed. The boys and I've been doing them since day 1, and with nearly 40 years of experience, we've become quite good at it." -Gene told Mylene. –"When I put my make-up on, it's symbolic. When I do it, I feel just like the ancient warriors did, when they went into battle. Because let's face it, a rock concert is just like a battle. The crowd is the enemy, and we must fight it and tame it, so we can earn their applause." -he declared, as he signed Alix's t-shirt.
"It's just like it happens with theatre actors. My dad's one, and I want to become one in the future. So, I understand what you're saying." -Mylene said.
Three meters to the right, Rose, Juleka and Ivan were talking to KISS drummer Eric Singer, who they were about to find out, had more in common with them, than they imagined.
"Do you mind signing this? It's for my brother. He's a really big fan of yours." -Juleka asked, with a rather shy voice.
"It would be my pleasure." –Eric said, as he pulled out a pen, he always carried with him. –"What's your brother's name?" -he asked Juleka.
"Luka." -Juleka said.
"And yours is?" -Eric asked her.
"Juleka… Juleka Couffaine." –Juleka said, shyly.
"No need to be shy." -Eric said, as he began signing the shirt. –"I don't bite." -he said, trying to make Juleka feel more at ease. Over the years, he had learned ways to make fans feel calmer and less shy around him, and was hoping that talking the way he was with the Goth girl, she would feel like she was talking to someone who was not as famous as he was.
"Jules is a little shy around most people." -Rose said. –"And so am I, I admit." -she told him.
"Well, let me tell you this, I'm also pretty shy myself." -Eric admitted.
"Really?" -Juleka asked, surprised. She never thought that someone like him would be shy.
"You don't look like it, if you don't mind me saying it." -Ivan said.
"Most people tend to tell me that. I always loved music, but I was too shy to try and think part of the reason why I became a drummer is because most of the times, drummers are the band's member that aren't seen in the spotlight." -Eric told them. –"And I was cool with that. Of course, over the years, slowly and steadily, I began to exit my shell and became a little bolder." -he said. –"Still, sometimes, my shyness still gets the best out of me. And that's okay. There's nothing wrong about a person being shy. Shy people tend to be the most interesting people… but don't tell others about that, or they might get jealous."
While Rose, Juleka and Ivan continued to chat in a cheerful manner with Eric, Nathaniel, Max, along with Alya and Nino were busy talking to Tommy Thayer, the Spaceman. Just like it happened with Eric, who was not the first Catman, Tommy was not the first one to wear both the face-paint and the nickname. That honour had belonged to Ace Frehley, the original Spaceman. Still, he had done his best to be worthy of Frehley's legacy, and though many fans considered him to be inferior to the original Spaceman, there were also many fans that considered just as good, or even better than Frehley's. As for Nathaniel, he was not a big fan of KISS, but he had fallen in love with their face-paints. So much, that when it came the time to decide which face-paint he was going to wear, he chose the Spaceman's. More so, he decided to make a quick sketch of Tommy as Spaceman, and offer it to him.
"Amazing… that's the word I'll go with, to describe this drawing." -Tommy told Nathaniel. –"You've got a talent, I'll tell you that." -he said. –"You really managed to capture my eyes, as well as my good looks, perfectly."
"Thank you. You're too kind." -Nathaniel said.
"Hey, I'm just telling you the truth. I'm known for being quite honest, when it comes to giving opinions about people and things." -Tommy declared. –"Maybe one of these years, you end up drawing a cover for one of our comic books, or a full issue, who knows?" -he told Nathaniel.
"KISS comics? I didn't even know those existed." -Max admitted.
"Well, they do, and to be quite honest, the versions of ourselves in them, are way cooler than us… mostly because they have real superpowers, and we don't." -Tommy said. –"Plus, they don't age, while we… well, they don't' call us dinosaurs for nothing." -he joked about it.
"I wonder if Marc knows about those comics?" -Nathaniel asked himself. –"I'll have to ask him, when I see him again… and who knows, I might buy one or two issues, just to see if they're any good, or not." -he thought.
"Well, I don't. As someone, who loves music, I believe that all music is great, no matter who plays it. As long as it's good music, I don't care who plays it." -Nino said.
"All music is great? Who are you, and what have you done with my boyfriend?" -Alya playfully asked him. –"I thought you believed that not all music is good."
"No, I said that not all songs are good." –Nino reminded her.
"Well, not all songs, if you ask me. There are songs that should've never been written, for one reason or another, but that's another issue." -Tommy told him. –"Anyways, you look like someone who loves to have his cap signed. Am I right?" -he asked Nino.
"Actually, no… but, I don't mind starting to be someone who likes to have it." -Nino chuckled, as he removed his cap and hand it to Tommy. –"You can make it to Nino." -he said.
"Nino, huh?" -Tommy said, as he signed the cap. –"So, you're into music. That's good. Any particular genre you like more than others?" -he asked him, curious.
"Not really. I mean, as a DJ, I have a tendency for anything that allows a person to dance, but like I said, all music has its magic." -Nino answered.
"That I agree with you. All music has its magic." -Tommy said, as he handed Nino his cap back.
"Oh, by the way, could you tell us how you managed to appear out of the blue, like that?" -Max asked him, curious.
"I'm with him. How did you manage to do that? Were you hiding, and we couldn't see you?" -Alya asked.
"Maybe, maybe not… maybe we were hiding, or maybe we just happen to have superpowers that you don't know about, that allow us to do that, right under your noses." -Tommy joked with a mischievous smile on his face.