T/N: If you don’t like your protagonists so dense you wonder where’s the black hole or the harem, don’t read this.
“Somebody, help me…!” a little girl’s screams from out of the blue. “Help me…!
Her voice echoes in the street. I look away from the display of carrots and onions I was eyeing for dinner and looked to the source of the voice… then my heart nearly jumped out of my chest.
Flowing, fluffy platinum blonde hair.
Emerald green eyes with a slight droop to them.
Pretty cherry-colored lips.
Flawless white skin.
Moreover, she’s wearing a cute pastel pink dress that looks ridiculously expensive, with plenty of frills and lace to boot.
She looks like she’s a 10-year-old girl as well, all my attention was on this incredible beauty desperately running to the other side of this busy, crowded market street.
I’ve only ever seen this girl when she was 14 years old, however, there is no mistaking her for anyone else!
She’s Emeladia Balrook, the daughter of the Duke of Freyletta!
“You’re not going to get away!”
“We’re going to catch you!”
And just behind her, three unsavory-looking men are chasing after her, shouting such suspicious words with ill-intent in their voices.
More importantly, they’ve got masks over their faces and they’re clutching swords.
Past them, I can see a gorgeous carriage, escort soldiers, and servants.
No way… no, this is surely it!
This scene… it’s the attempted murder of Emeladia!
“Who are you…?!” she screams. “Stop looking at me!”
As expected, the other shoppers are too afraid of getting involved with sword-wielding men chasing after a Duke’s daughter.
Emeladia is already half-crying.
“Got you!” one of the thugs cries as he gets right behind her and swings his sword.
Emeladia screamed and swerved into a nearby alleyway.
She dodged that sword by a hairsbreadth.
The thugs overshoot, hurriedly backtrack, and follow after her.
“Huh?!” I shout, stunned and shocked. “Hey, wait, this is bad!”
This situation is ridiculously bad…!
“Auntie!” I say. “I’ll come to pick it up later, just put it in a bag for me!”
“Oh, where are you going, Lia?!”
I don’t bother to reply and instead rush into the alley as fast as I can. “This street goes that way, so if I go down from here..!”
I round a few corners with the help of a mental map of the neighborhood. Then, just a step away from my intended destination, Emeladia jumps out in front of me.
Nice, I made it!
“Wait!” I cry as I threw my arms out. “Don’t go over there!”
I grab Emeladia’s and pull her into this alley.
“What?!” she screams.
“If you go there, you’ll find yourself in the slums!” I said. “If you head up from here, you’ll find yourself back on the street!”
Emeladia stared at me with eyes wide open in surprise, I decided to drag her with me back to the street. As you’d expect of a young lady, she’s not at all used to running, she’s slow, struggling to breathe, staggering, and is about to collapse.
“Which way did she go?!” the thugs yell.
Hiiiii…?! Are they chasing after me, too?! If they catch up to us, will we both be murdered?!
“Keep going, you’re almost to the street!” I said.
“Haah…” Emeladia pants, “haa… haa, haa… who—who are you?”
“Me?” I say. “I’m Lyria, the daughter of a pharmacist near here!”
Yes, my name is Lyria. I’m a commoner, so I don’t have a surname.
Four years from now, when I turn 14 years old, my Light Magic will awaken. As it was a super-rare element, I’d be adopted into a Barony and get a family name.
Then, I’d be enrolled into the Royal Granfield Academy, where the First Prince of the Kingdom of Granfield; the Eldest Son of the Chancellor; the Second Son of the Knight Commander; the Eldest Son of the Kingdom’s largest Trading Company; and the Second Prince of the neighboring country would all be handsome men with various exceptional qualities. I would have fateful encounters with these handsome men.
Then, I will help them while learning to unlock the full potential of my Light Magic, and they will help me in turn, I would become the top student whilst deepening my bonds and falling in love with them.
Yes, this is the world of the Otome Game, “Endless Light and Laughter.”
Or a world that resembles it perfectly.
Internally, I’m a former Japanese citizen, an otaku girl who was an office lady at a small company. I don’t remember too well but I think I must have died from overwork or something.
It was now that I realize that I was reincarnated in this world as the Heroine, Lyria.
Actually, I remembered all of this three days ago. I was helping at my parents’ pharmacy when a medicine bottle fell off the shelf and hit me on the head!
And thanks to all that… I was in the pits of despair.
It’s not because I died in my previous life. But why, among the many other Otome Games I could have reincarnated in, did it have to be “ELLa?”
Because “in ELLa”, the Villainess’ bullying is so horrific.
Tripping you up?
Destroying your textbooks?
Pushing you down the stairs?
That’s just the beginning.
Ink bottles would get smashed over my head, my hair and dress would be so ruined I couldn’t attend a ball.
The dress I’m wearing would get torn to pieces right in the courtyard where the boys would also walk by.
In response to being invited by a boy, I’m ridiculed, am accused of being a whore, have water thrown over me, and garbage tossed at me.
I’d be shunned then taken to a place where I’d be thrown to the ground, kicked, and covered in so many bruises I’d have to wait out in my room until they healed and disappeared, I could no longer go on dates or show up to school events.
The Bad Ends usually involve being killed by someone. And the few Bad Ends where I survive end with my face scarred with a knife to the point where I have to conceal my face for the rest of my life.
Who thinks up plots like these…?!
The main writer claimed in an interview that he put all his heart and soul into making a universally despised Villainess but would the effort have made any difference…?!
Why didn’t he put all that passion into flirting with handsome guys?!
Developers, let’s sit down and talk!
In short, in four years, I’ll have to face all that.
If this were a game, I’d go “I’m done with this Villainess!” and stop playing. I was convinced this was going to be an “It’s all hopeless!” situation.
I already know this is real and that I’m going to have such an experience, why would I want to go to school?! I don’t have to fall in love with handsome guys, but what do I have to do to avoid the bullying and the Bad Ends?!
If were the Villainess, I can change my daily routine and avoid my ruin.
If I were a generic, nameless NPC, I could live as I wanted without anyone noticing.
But since I was the Heroine, if I tried to get around and change the scenario, then the Villainess/Heroine positions would switch, and I’d be condemned instead!
And if there are other reincarnated people here, their attempts to change the script can doom me, too!
Honestly, what should I do…
Suddenly, I remembered something about this setting, about the Villainess.
She’s arrogant, she’s misanthropic, she doesn’t seem to see commoners as human beings, and thinks she’s allowed to do anything to anyone below her, and everyone except her family and her fiance, the First Prince, think she’s a garbage human being.
In the backstory, there was an incident that put the Villainess on such a path.
Yes, it’s what’s happening in front of me, the attempted murder of Emeladia Barlook, the daughter of the Duke of Freyletta, who would later become the Villainess.
“Haah… haah… I… I can’t…” Emeladia wheezes.
“Just a little more,” I said, “keep going!”
It was three days ago that I remembered my previous life. I fell into despair and hid out in my room. I only managed to climb out because of the hope I could avoid the bullying and the Bad Ends.
And now I suddenly happened to come across the attempted murder of Emeladia. Is this the gods’ way of telling me to do my best to help?!
“Haah… haah… it’s no good… I’m finished…” Emeladia huffs.
“I can see the street!” I said. “Just a moment more!”
Emeladia desperately cried for help but no one answered. What’s more, she got lost in the slums and couldn’t tell the slum dwellers apart from the thugs chasing after her. So because of that trauma, she hated commoners who didn’t try to help her, became a misanthrope that couldn’t see them as fellow human beings.
If Emeladia avoids falling on the path of the Villainess here, maybe she won’t bully me once we go to school?
There are so many factors to consider.
But even then, I can’t overlook the fact that a girl of only 10-years old is so traumatized and injured so severely she becomes a misanthrope!
“Woo, we made it—woah?!”
As soon as we burst out into the street, Emeladia’s legs got tangled up and she crashed into me, we ended up rolling on the cobblestone together.
“Get up, hurry!” I say.
Oh no, she’s so tired she can’t even speak, could she even stand…?!
“Hehe, looks like we finally caught up,” the thugs say.
Oh no! They’ve got us!
“Let me do the honors.”
“I’ll kill that other kid with her.”
Hii…?! Was all this for nothing…?!
Is this going to be a Bad End where we’re killed together in a place like this…?! Game Over on the third day even though the plot hasn’t even begun yet…?!
“We’ll save you….! Young Miss, we’re here…! We’ll be by your side at once!”
“Tch, this fucking brat!”
“Hey, kill them quickly!”
“Protect the Young Miss!”
I don’t remember much after that… I don’t know because I didn’t see it. When I saw that sword bearing down on us, I hugged Emeladia with all my strength and squeezed my eyes shut.
The escorts that rushed in found that we were safe and said, “It’s safe now, well done, young lady. You can let go of the Young Miss now.”
It was only after being gently coaxed several times and touching my shoulder that I finally came to my senses.
“Ah… excuse me, I’m coming in…?” I muttered.
Emeladia chuckles. “Come in, Lyria, welcome to my bedroom.”
Today, I was invited to the home of the Duke of Freyletta.
No way, it couldn’t because of the other day… does it have to do with my saving Emeladia by chance?
I was thanked by the old butler who was riding with her in the carriage, Emeladia thanked me herself, and I’ve already received a reward from the Duke, right?
I think that should have been the end of it.
I didn’t think we’d meet again until after I enrolled in the Academy, when were we were supposed to according to the plot.
So why is she inviting me to her house?!
“You saved my life, didn’t you, Lyria?” Emeladia says as she sits in a chair and smiles. “That’s why I really rather wanted to talk to you more.”
Her cuteness, is it like an angel’s at the least…?!
“What’s wrong, Lyria?” Emeladia asked. “You’re staring at my face.”
“Huh?” I stammer. “Oh, well, you’re so cute, Emeladia… I was so captivated.”
“Well, then go right ahead, Lyria.”
Flowers bloom around Emeladia as she smiles shyly.
An angel! An angel has descended on this place!
Hrm… I didn’t think such an angelic and beautiful little girl would eventually become such a devilish Villainess…
Because four years later, those eyes would look at the Heroine, Lilia, like she was walking garbage as Emeladia thrust a figurative knife into her heart, sat on her high horse and laughed in her face, and finally slashed my face to ribbons.
I wonder if it’s fine to get involved with such a person because it’s not in the plot… though I’ve already gotten myself involved.
No, since it’s like this, shouldn’t I want to involve myself more…?
In the future, if I keep getting along with this angel and don’t enter the First Prince’s Route, I may have a significant chance of avoiding the horrific bullying or a Bad End…?
Yes, I’ve already changed the script so far, so let’s go!
“Ms. Lyria, please have a cup,” a maid said as she poured me fragrant tea and laid before me a plate with cookies piled high!
I remember that at 10 years-old, Lyria couldn’t eat sweets as they were a luxury item.
Emeladia chuckles. “It’s all for you, Lyria. Nobody else will take them, so feel free to eat it all.”
It’s embarrassing to receive all these cookies! But I don’t hesitate to eat them.
“Thank you, Lady Emeladia, I’m grateful,” I say. “Mmm… they’re delicious!”
My first bite of a cookie in my 10 years of my life is so sweet and delicious! As it’s of the finest quality you’d offer to a young lady of a Duchy, I can’t stop my hands from grabbing another and another!
Emeladia chuckles and says, “I’m glad you like it so much, Ms. Lyria.”
Oh, she’s an angel! Emeladia is truly an angel! This angel’s smile is positively priceless!
I’ll swear, again and again, I will protect this angel’s smile!
“Now, I would like to know more about you, Lyria,” Emeladia says.
She seems to want to know about where I live and the like, so I tell her whatever she wants as we enjoy tea and cookies. This is because I got replacement cookies in return.
Also, Emeladia is so cute when she laughs, is surprised, or changes her expression. And when I hear about Emeladia in turn, it makes me happy as well.
Thanks to that, we talked a lot and had plenty of fun as well.
There was suddenly a knocking on the door and a man stepped in, I wondered how long we had been chatting.
Platinum blonde hair all swept back.
Emerald green eyes that droop slightly with pupils narrow like a snake’s.
Lips curled into a sharp scowl.
Flawless white skin.
Noble’s clothes as luxurious as you can get.
He’s a slender, handsome man but his eyes are menacing.
“Why hello, Father,” Emeladia said. “Why are you here?”
“I heard that that commoner girl is coming over again,” Duke Freyletta says as he looks straight at me, his expression as if he was looking at walking garbage. He sees the cookie in my hand and curses under his breath.
“What do you think you’re here to do, enjoy sweets?” Duke Freyletta said. “You don’t know how so unscrupulous these commoners are. I thought I’d given you enough money as a reward.”
Stop with the hostilities! You don’t have to be as stingy with sweets, especially since you’re already so rich.
The fun tea party is ruined.
“Father, don’t say anything like that to Lyria,” Emeladia said. “I’m rather fond of her.”
“Emeladia, choose who you associate with,” Duke Freyletta said. “You’re the most prestigious young lady of the nobility. Don’t you want to become the First Prince’s fiance and eventually rule this kingdom as its Queen? We’ll be a laughing stock if word gets out that you’re so fond of a filthy commoner. The name of the Freyletta Duchy will be tarnished. The royal family will also take notice.”
“Father!” Emeladia shouts. “Didn’t Lyria save my life?!”
“Which is why I gave her enough money as a reward,” Duke Freyletta said. “And you, are you getting closer to Emeladia just to have more tastes of luxury? How shallow. That is why the commoners are born filthy.”
“… I understand,” I said. “Please excuse me, I’m going to leave now…
Finally, Duke Freyletta locks eyes with me.
His gaze was was cold I couldn’t help but whimper. It was a look of pure despisement.
He left without saying anything further, I’m so relieved I touch my chest.
“Forgive me for my Father, Lyria…” Emeladia says.
“N-No…” I stammer.
The real problem here is because this child has him as a father.
That was almost word-for-word what Villainess Emeladia said in the game.
If I started hating commoners because of that attempted murder, became a misanthrope, and my father kept telling me the same, I’m sure I’d grow up like that.
Even after I was adopted by a Baron family, I was still a commoner. I guess all Emeladia’s Villainess ways were because she believed that I shouldn’t even come close to handsome noblemen, especially her fiance the First Prince.
But now… I should be able to prevent it.
“Lyria, lift your face,” Emeladia said as she got out of her chair and came up to me. “You’ve no reason to hang your head,” she said as she sat beside me and gently took my hand in hers.
Her small, dainty hands fill me with encouragement.
“It’s embarrassing, but I thought that way about commoners…” Emeladia said. “Father told me so many times how terrible they are.”
So it was her father, after all!
“Back then, no matter how many times I called for help, no one did… so I thought Father was completely right.”
However, Emeladia peers at me and gives me a dazzling smile.
“But you helped me, Lyria. Even if you were risking your life, you hugged me to protect me. Father said you’re like all the other commoners. He’s wrong. I’ve changed my thinking about them thanks to you, Lyria.”
“Lady Emeladia…” I whisper.
What a dazzling angelic smile! Have I finally done it? Have I totally prevented the Villainess’ fall…?!
No, I shouldn’t let my guard down yet.
It’s still four years before the main game begins. I don’t know when that sort of father might try to set Emeladia on the path to becoming a Villainess once more.
I’m certain I’m the only one who can prevent that.
I, the Heroine, am talking and interacting with the villainess before the main game even starts… no, no more, I’ll stop thinking about this!
“Um, Lady Emeladia… I…”
Oh, I wonder if I can say something like this… she might think that commoners are sly and manipulative…
“What is it, Lyria?” Emeladia asked. “I’ll listen to what you have to say, so don’t be afraid to let me know, okay?”
Oh, she’s truly an angel!
“Then…” I take a deep breath and carefully choose my words to say exactly what I want to.
“Even commoners have people they hate… they hurt them, they despise them… and those people hate them back… it’s a whole loop of hate. In that same way, I want to be kind to people who are kind to me, and I’d be happy to receive it in turn… I want to be nice to people who are nice to me.”
–Because in the end, we’re all humans even if we’re born into different worlds.
I don’t know how to say that, the words are on the tip of my tongue.
But Emeladia may have found them for them.
When I open my eyes, I’m surprised to see her looking down and thinking deeply.
And when she looked up at me, she smiled like a blooming flower.
“Well, it’s exactly as you say,” Emeladia said. “There are people who do evil and speak badly of those they hate. On the contrary, I want to be kind to people who are kind to me like you, Lyria. And I like you, Lyria, so I want you to like me, too.”
She understood…!? She understood what I meant…?!
I wonder if this, we’re a long way away from the Villainess’ fall!
Since then, I and Emeladia meet up frequently.
I was invited to Emeladia’s house once a week and I was also invited to go on short overnight trips and heading out to the town together.
“Welcome, Young Miss,” the gatekeep says with a nod. “Please, come in.”
“Since getting to know Ms. Lyria, the Young Miss has been so kind and happy,” the maids say. “She’s even started to thank us servants for our hard work. This is all thanks to you, Ms. Lyria, you have our deepest gratitude.”
My reputation at Manor Freyletta is rocketing sky high.
Additionally, the other family members have come to love Emeladia very much and the air in the manor has become quite sunny.
However, the Duke is the same as always.
It’s natural that Duke Freyletta keeps hearing about me and when he bothers to come all the way to speak to me, he’s always verbally abusive, attempting to get rid of me, threatening me to stay away from Emeladia, and so forth.
But every single time, Emeladia had my back.
She even got rather angry, saying you shouldn’t look down on other people without looking at what kind of person they are at heart.
Isn’t this proof that she’s become so much of an angel that she can’t fall and become a devilish Villainess!?
“Welcome, Lyria,” Emeladia said as the maids guided me through a small garden in the corner of their gigantic backyard. “The roses bloomed so beautifully that I wished for you to see them as well.”
Emeladia turns to me and her face suddenly glows.
As she took my hand, we ran off with haste unbefitting a Duke’s daughter, our skirts were flapping so much in the wind.
“Thank you again for your generosity, Lady Emeladia,” I said.
“Lyria, didn’t I tell you to drop the ‘Lady?’” Emeladia said. “I asked you before to talk with me casually like a close friend, didn’t I?”
“Yes, um… right… thank you again for your generosity, Emeladia,” I said.
Emeladia chuckles and hums, “You’re welcome, Lyria~!”
Are we already such close friends? I was asked to ignore our difference in status and ended up offending her by being too polite.
We were holding hands, linking arms, and there’s plenty of skinship as we’re so close together, but I don’t mind at all if it means she likes me. In return for this intimacy, Emeladia’s cheeks turn red and she smiles so happily.
It’s a wonderful sight and it’s rather useful to be able to interact with this angelically beautiful girl.
“Hey, look, Lyria,” Emeladia said. “It’s such a vibrant red, isn’t it so beautiful?”
“Yes, it’s very beautiful, but you’re more beautiful, Emeladia,” I say.
Emeladia looks away from the roses and looks at me in surprise, she puts her hands on her cheeks. “G-Goodness, really, Lyria?”
Yes, that was exactly what I was thinking. It’s not an exaggeration. But in my fairness, the profile of Emeladia lovingly looking at those roses was so beautiful, it was inevitable.
What’s more, Emeladia’s cuteness intensifies when she’s shy and stammering! I wonder if I should hug this angel and bring her home with me?!
However, even an angel such as Emeladia seems to have her problems.
“Hey, did you hear, Lyria?” Emeladia asks. “The other day, Lady Matilda said that Lady Saphia of the Marquis of Craymatta said that I was a cold, aloof, and despicable girl… I wonder if she hates me. Do you think I’m like that, Lyria? If you believe I am and despise me, I don’t think I can keep on living.”
Yeah, she’s being a little overdramatic, but I was seriously worried that she would take this to heart.
I was certain that Lady Saphia was a rival character on the Eldest Son of the Chancellor’s route.
Emeladia was the fiancee to the first prince and Saphia was aiming to be the fiancee of the Eldest Son of the Chancellor.
Emeladia was fond of overkill as a Villainess, so Lady Saffa gave up hopes of a relationship.
But with the current Emeladia, they should be able to get along without any problems.
Also, I don’t recognize the name so I can’t be sure, but Matilda may be a member of Emeladia’s entourage.
Some young ladies were incredibly hostile to anyone who got close to Emeladia, keeping others away, making her believe their lies, and to flatter her to get closer to her.
As I looked at Emeladia’s face, I seemed to be correct. I have to eliminate these bad influences to protect Emeladia.
“I don’t think you’re like that at all, Emeladia, and I don’t hate you,” I said.
“Truly?” Emeladia asked. “You don’t hate me?”
“Yes, I can’t hate you because I love you.”
“I’m so glad…” Emeladia said.
Her exaggerated relief is so cute. But why is she squeezing my hands?
“I don’t like people who stab others in the back or lie to them, because maybe they’re doing the same with others when I’m not looking,” I said. “You’ll never know.”
“… Yes,” Emeladia said, “perhaps so.”
I don’t want her to feel so negatively about a girl she considers a friend. If I insist, it’ll just be counterproductive.
For the time being, I’ve driven this wedge and the rest will depend on Emeladia.
“And as for Lady Saphia,” I said, “I think you should confirm it with her to her face rather than just taking a rumor as truth. Maybe Lady Saphia feels that way. And if she doesn’t, you might still want to get along with her, right?”
“Yes… I see,” Emeladia said. “It’s as you said, Lyria, I’ll speak to Lady Saphia.”
“Yeah, that sounds like a good idea,” I said.
Later, when she gathered the courage to speak with her, Emeladia said it was all a misunderstanding and the two become very close.
It seems they’ll be holding tea parties next time and either invite the other or be invited.
I feel a little lonely that she’s making good friends with people other than me but… I’m glad she’s got a wider friend circle.
After all that, Emeladia kept asking me for my opinions.
“Say, Lyria, what ribbon do you think I should wear for a birthday party, pink or purple? Which one do you think suits me better?”
“Pink is absolutely better,” I said immediately, if a little bit bitter. “The day I met you, you wore a cute pink dress. I think you’d look much better in pink than purple.”
Purple does look good on her but Emeladia’s color motif as a Villainess was purple.
“Oh, you remembered? I’m so glad~!” Emeladia hums. “Pink it is, then.”
Then, there was a cute problem–
“At that birthday party the other day, I met a boy for the first time and he told me to change it,” Emeladia said. “The pink ribbon you said looked good on me, he said it should be light blue. He asked me to put on a light blue ribbon just because he wanted me to. Don’t you think that’s awful?”
“Ahh… I’m sure Emeladia was just too cute, he wanted a chance to talk, which is why he said that,” I said.
Maybe that boy was in love at first sight.
“If so, then he’s not a gentleman at all,” Emeladia said. “I don’t want to speak to him again. I wonder if I’ll be hated if I speak badly of him.”
Angry and offended Emeladia is too cute!
Then, a bittersweet problem–
“Have you been to that popular cafe in town?” Emeladia asked.
“Oh, that gourmet shop with the delicious cakes,” I said. “It’s a little too expensive for me, so I haven’t been there yet.”
“Ah, I haven’t either…” Emeladia said.
“Would you like to go there?” I asked.
“Well, um… yeah, a little bit,” Emeladia said.
Not just a little bit, she seems extremely curious.
“If we ask the maids, we can go there,, right?” I asked.
“Well, yes, but…”
Oh, she wants to enjoy the atmosphere of dining at a cafe. But since that incident, she’s afraid of going out to town and needs to work up the courage to leave the mansion.
“Then, why don’t we go together?” I asked. “If something happens like before, I’ll protect you again.”
“Truly?!” Emeladia says. “I’m so relieved! Ah, is it too late already?”
I hope this will make the town a little less scary and cure some of that trauma.
Then, she there was a cute issue–
“Say, Lyria, I’ve got two invitations but the dates are so close together I can only attend one,” Emeladia said. “What should I do?”
“What are the events?” I asked.
“The first is the celebration of Father’s 60th birthday and the other is the birthday party of that child I met at Lady Saphia’s tea party.”
Ah, I see… considering her faction, she should go celebrate her father’s 60th birthday. Besides, Saphia is from a different faction and perhaps that child is from another group altogether.
If you think about this as an adult, you don’t have to wonder which one to prioritize.
However, if you consider if a 10-year-old girl can enjoy someone’s 60th birthday party, it becomes a delicate subject.
Besides, I’m more concerned about Emeladia rejecting birthday party invitations. I want her to go to the second and get along with that kid.
“I think it’s enough for the Duke to celebrate with his faction, so I think you should attend what you want to go to,” I said. “It’s important to get along with your friends.”
“But I wonder…” Emeladia muttered, “will Father be able to forgive me?”
Hmm… she is going to get scolded. Oh, I’ve got it.
“Then why don’t you tell him this?” I said. “It’s better to make lots of allies with other girls your age, in case they become prominent members of their factions.”
“That’s… that’s amazing, Lyria!” Emeladia said. “Father will forgive me for sure!”
Well, the faction hub-bub is pretty heavy for commoners, they’ll be affected by the decisions of those in power.
And that’s how I resolved Emeladia’s problems.
Thanks to that, the maids started to talk to me behind the scenes. “The Young Miss is quite trusting of you, Ms. Lyria, and depends on you quite a bit; if you ask anything of her, we’re certain she’ll listen.”
What are they going on about?
There’s something up here… but, yeah, I was pretty happy about it.
Of course, we weren’t always on good terms, we also had fights. But we loved each other so much we often forgot the cause.
And every time we made up, I feel like we were getting along better, which made me happy as well.
At the moment I regained my memories of my previous life, I fell into despair, but now I’m glad that I reincarnated as Lyria in this world.
Regrettably, the First Prince will take my best friend in the future.
In the blink of an eye, three years passed and we were both 13-years-old. There’s only a year left before the main game starts.
It was a normal day with the usual tea party.
“Haah…” Emeladia sighs.
“What’s wrong, Emeladia?” I asked. “I heard you sigh just now.”
Emeladia has a sad look on her face, she hides her mouth with a fan.
“You know you’re ruining your angelic beauty, right?” I asked.
“Really, Lyria…” Emeladia mutters, smiling shyly before she looks down and sad once again.
“I don’t think I can help you much, but if you want to talk about it, I’m listening,” I said. “If you don’t want to talk, I won’t force you, but… don’t you think it’s better if you do?”
“Thank you, Lyria,” Emeladia said. “Your consideration always makes me feel so much lighter.”
Ooh, that smile is too dazzling! She was already a ridiculously beautiful girl, but these past three years, she’s only become even more so! Give it a few more years, and I’m sure you won’t find a more beautiful woman here or in the neighboring regions.
I’m convinced war would start over Emeladia.
“Could I ask you to just listen to me?” Emeladia asked.
“But of course!” I said.
“Thank you, Lyria,” Emeladia said. “You are my only ally, after all.”
Emeladia puts her hand on mine. It’s so soft, smooth, and elegant. She just loves holding hands and touching.
“This hasn’t been formally decided yet, so don’t say it to anyone else,” Emeladia said.
“Yes, I understand,” I reply. “I won’t tell another soul.”
Emeladia nods then lowered her voice. “My father is about to formally decide on my engagement with the First Prince.”
I stop and swallow my congratulations because Emeladia’s eyes were sad and trembling.
Emeladia is not yet formally engaged to the First Prince. There was a messy power struggle among the aristocrats and because there were multiple candidates, they had yet to narrow it down to one.
It was because of this same power struggle that Emeladia was attacked and almost killed three years ago.
The reigning Queen believed that Emeladia was the most promising candidate for the First Prince’s fiancee. So, a year before the main game started, Emeladia’s engagement was formalized… and the rest was history.
Game Emeladia is quite proud of her being the fiance who survived the power struggle, of course, and of eventually becoming the Queen and ruling the country. Someone of her stature was suitable for the role and the other nobles believed as much.
With such arrogance, she seemed to leave the First Prince quite lonely.
That’s why when a commoner (Lyria, the Heroine) approached the First Prince, Emeladia couldn’t allow his fiance, and by extension, the throne, to be taken for her, so she resorted to horrific bullying.
Incidentally, the handsome men have various problems as a result of that power struggle, so Lyria the Heroine will help them while learning how to make full use of her Light Magic, deepening her bonds with them whilst solving political problems and fights over succession.
And now, it’s time for Emeladia to become the First Prince’s fiancee.
However, this Emeladia isn’t a Villainess, she’s an angel who hasn’t fallen, and doesn’t seem to be too happy about this arrangement.
“Perhaps you don’t want it?” I asked.
“Yes…” Emeladia said. “I’m only saying this because it’s you, Lyria, but I don’t want it.”
Woah, did she really just say “I don’t want it.”?!
“That’s… why?” I asked. “It’s incredible if you eventually become Queen, isn’t it?”
“Yes, it would be,” Emeladia said. “Since I was young, I’ve been strictly schooled in academics and etiquette to become a future queen.”
I already know. I only heard about it while we were having tea parties but she complained that it was quite tough and brutal.
“But, well, ah… I don’t believe… I want the First Prince to be my partner, he’s too innocent and naive…”
She just said “naive” and “I don’t believe” right now, right?
Huh? Was the First Prince such a person?
He treated the former commoner (Lyria, the Heroine) without any discrimination and listened to her like an equal. He believed her when she was falsely accused and he must have been an intelligent, gentle, and handsome guy with the best grades.
And now that I say it out loud, Emeladia is like that to me, isn’t she?
They seem to be very compatible.
“It sounds strange, doesn’t it?” Emeladia asked.
“Yes, because I’ve never heard he had such a reputation,” I said. “I wouldn’t know because I’ve never met the First Prince.”
“No matter who comes to him, he will treat them kindly and listen to them…”
“Without a hint of suspicion or doubt, he’ll swallow anything he is told.”
Huh? What? In short, was it because of him being an airhead that he treated and listened to the former commoner (the Heroine, Lyria) without any prejudices?
Was he actually a naive fool?!
“It’s a miracle he became so innocent and straightforward despite the power struggle, even though the nobles are so willing to stoop to dirty tactics these days.”
Yeah, I think so, too. However…
“But this isn’t about the First Prince, who’ll eventually become the King,” Emeladia said. “I don’t know what the power-hungry aristocrats will feed him but I have no doubt he’ll swallow it without question. If he remains this much of an unthinking fool, this country will eventually go to ruin.”
Oh, she just said “an unthinking fool.”
“I see… if you marry such a Prince, all the blame and consequences of ruin will be on Queen Emeladia’s shoulders.”
“Yes, exactly…” Emeladia said.
With that… I’m certain I don’t want to marry such a Prince. He wasn’t portrayed like that in the game, but in this reality, he was an airhead.
But… Game Emeladia, the Villainess, still wanted to marry him. Why? The blame would fall on her all the same…
Oh, was that because she wanted to dominate all national affairs? Because she was arrogant, twisted, and misanthropic, she had not an ounce of love or trust for the First Prince, she just wanted to control everything and reign over the kingdom?
… It’s possible.
Villainess Emeladia could be that devilish.
But this Angelic Emeladia doesn’t even seem to consider it.
“Though it’s not something I should say out loud…” I said, “I want you to know that I don’t want you to be the First Prince’s fiancee, either…”
As Emeladia is no longer able to speak confidently and only to her best friend, I decide I want this angel to be happy. Moreover, I will never forgive myself if my best friend is forced to compete for an idiotic First Prince.
“Do you truly think so?” Emeladia asks as she clasps my hand tightly.
In response, I put my other hand on top of hers and gently wrap my fingers around it.
“Of course, I don’t want you to be unhappy,” I said. “I want you to smile and be happy all the time. I wish I could do just that…”
But I don’t have to power nor the status to…
I swallow those words.
Emelia’s hands shake slightly. “… Do you truly mean it”?
I nodded to Emeladia. But nodding was all I could do.
I want Emeladia to have a happy marriage, so I wonder if I can manage to be the First Prince’s fiancee instead.
Putting myself in direct competition with the Duchy… yeah, that feels like a terrible idea and an impossible goal. Duke Freyletta still looks down on me and despises my coming to visit Emeladia.
“I wonder if there’s anything I can do…” I mutter absently.
Emeladia’s hands shook at my words. “… There is something.”
“There is something you can do, Lyria… no, something only you can do.”
Emeladia’s hot and teary eyes stare straight at me.
“Okay,” I said. “Tell me what I can do. I’ll do my best to help.”
I nodded without thinking. After all, if you are looked at with such pitiful eyes and are asked for help, a best friend has to help, doesn’t she?
“Thank you, Lyria…” Emeladia says. “You’ve always been helping me.”
“But of course.”
Because from our first meeting on, I swore to protect Emeladia.
“Thank you, Lyria, I love you,” Emeladia said.
“I love you too, Emeladia,” I reply.
Oh, what a dazzling smile! If I can protect this smile, I’ll do anything!
“Then I’m heading out soon, Lyria,” Emeladia said. “Please come with me.”
Our carriage rattles as we travel along the roads.
Immediately after that conversation, Emeladia ordered the maids to pack all of her luggage, then immediately boarded a carriage with me being pushed in after her.
As you might expect, Emeladia is a Duke’s daughter and has a lot of things that needed packing.
All in all, it took three carriages in total. The lead carriage had me and Emeladia as passengers, the two rear carriages were full of luggage and her maids.
“Emeladia, where are we headed?” I ask now that the carriage has begun moving and we’ve finally settled down.
Emeladia chuckled. “Lyria, you followed me without hesitation nor asking where we were going. That’s why I love you.”
Oh, that angel’s smile is too dazzling! And if she says that so bluntly, I’ll be too embarrassed!
“So where are we going?” I asked.
Emeladia smiles even wider and brighter, I get a little nervous.
“We’re currently headed to the harbor,” Emeladia said.
“The harbor?” I ask. “Are we sailing somewhere?”
“Yes, to the Kingdom of Browbalt,” Emeladia said.
“The Kingdom of Browbalt?!” I yell.
Isn’t that the place she’s deported to during the condemnation event?! Why are we heading to that country even though I’ve avoided her becoming a Villainess?!
“The Kingdom is the home country of my grandmother, and the Duke there is the son of my great aunt and Father’s cousin.”
No wonder it was like that in the original game, Browbalt was the perfect place to deport Emeladia to.
“So in short, we’re visiting the Duke there?” I asked.
“Yes, we are,” Emeladia said.
That… that’s going to be a long trip, isn’t it? I only told my parents I was heading to Emeladia’s.
“Um… so when will we be back?” I ask.
We reached the harbor, I’m worried about Dad and Mom if I don’t at least send them a letter before boarding a ship, explaining to them that I won’t be back for a while.
“We won’t be returning,” Emeladia said.
“… Pardon me?”
“I never want to return to this country ever again,” Emeladia said.
Hold up, this is…
“You’re running away?”
Hold up, hold up, she’s suddenly running away from home! And also, I’m involved in this?! But why?!
“Because I don’t want to be the fiancee of the First Prince or get married, but no matter how much I tell Father, he won’t listen to me,” Emeladia said.
I see, you did tell me you didn’t want it, after all. But the Duke…
“My father wants to send me to the royal family to become the consort’s kin and take power from the throne,” Emeladia said. “Thus, my intentions are irrelevant.”
So that’s how it was…
“I see, but now you’re going to run away from home…”
“I do have people who love me and feel the same…” Emeladia said.
“Huhh….?!” I go. “I’ve never heard of them.”
“Yes, this is the first time I’ve said it.”
No way, I didn’t realize there was someone so interested in Emeladia… it was kind of shocking.
I was shocked because I wasn’t told there was someone she liked, my best friend was taken from me, and so on.
“Who is it…?” I ask.
It can’t be the First Prince…
Is it the Eldest Son of the Chancellor, who’s also a capture target? Or is it the Second Son of the Knight Commander? Or the Eldest Son of the Grand Ravensburg Trading Company in the Kingdom? The Second Prince of the neighboring country?
Or someone else entirely?
In other words, unless the Duke of Freyletta gives up on marrying Emeladia to the First Prince and gives his blessing to Emeladia’s relationship with that person, she’ll never return here?
That means… there’s little chance I can come back?!
“Who do you think it is?” Emeladia asks as she closes the gap between us, she puts her hand over mine and stares directly into my eyes.
“Um… who is it?” I ask. “Is it someone I know?”
“They’re someone who always thinks about me before themselves, protects me, guides me when I’m lost and desires my happiness.”
It sounds like someone I know now that she’s said it out loud.
“… A person who’s always acting as my escort?” Emeladia asks.
I can think of someone who meets those requirements. However, right now, we’ve only got maids, no escorts, right?
Emeladia’s other hand touches my cheek. “That person is a very dense idiot who doesn’t notice my feelings at all.”
Why is she staring at me with such passionate and teary eyes? Why is she stroking my cheeks so affectionately?
“My father saw them and I wondered just how arrogant and disgusting they were,” Emeladia said. “If I didn’t know any better, I might have become just like him… so I can’t thank enough the person who opened my eyes.”
“Above all else, I can do this now because that person has risked their life to protect me.”
Wait a minute…?!
Emeladia smiles so sweetly, so gently, so beautifully, as that were the correct answer.
“That day, she grabbed my hand and ran so desperately,” Emeladia said. “She protected me after I was so exhausted I couldn’t even stand. She might have been killed alongside me. But still, she didn’t run away and held me.”
“No, wait a moment, Emeladia…?!” I say.
“That day, that time, with the fierce beating of my heart… I fell in love with you.”
No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, hold up a minute, she’s got this all wrong!
That fierce beating was because we sprinted as fast as we could!
She was so excited because she was about the be killed!
No, the suspension bridge effect1 would still be there…!
I didn’t realize that Emeladia thought that way, even though I had been by her side for three years…?!
No, don’t call me with such affection… don’t stare at me with such beautiful emerald green eyes…
“H-Hold up, Emeladia, calm down, alright?!” I stammered.
“I am calm,” Emeladia said. “You’re calm, right?”
Our hands are on top of each other… why are our fingers entwined?! This is a lover’s connection!
“Fa-Face, face close, face too close?!” I stammer.
Oh, those long eyelashes!
Her nose is so straight, tall, and beautiful!
Those glossy, soft lips!
The smell so wonderful it makes me feel so heady!
It’s too lovely, too beautiful, too angelic, and yet such a face is coming closer to mine…!
“Don’t run away, look at me properly, alright?” Emeladia says.
Oh, I can’t escape with both of Emeladia’s hands on my cheeks as she moves closer to me!
Her lips feel so warm and soft on mine…!
“Hah… I love you, Lyria,” Emeladia said.
This is bad… this is bad, this is bad…!
My heart is going wild! It’s about to jump out of my chest!
Emeladia is too beautiful! Too angelic! Even so, she loves me! She loves me!
I’m not like that, I usually like boys!
Sure, I don’t hate Emeladia, but I love her like a best friend and I’ve never seen her like that!”
Don’t call my name so lovingly! I can’t think of anything because my head feels like it’s boiling over!
If you say my name like that with such a beautiful face, I might think that you… you…!
No, this isn’t running away, it’s an elopement! She never intends to come back!
Why did this happen?! Where did I go wrong?! I just didn’t want to be bullied, I just wanted Emeladia to be an angel…!
Oh no, Emeladia’s beautiful face is approaching. The face of this angel is staring right at me, so beautiful I can’t take my eyes off of her. I want to escape but I can’t get away…!
Emeladia’s lips are too soft and comfortable!
My head goes blank and melts down…!
I’ve been attacked2 by the same gender…!
Emeladia giggles. “You’re so cute when you turn bright red, Lyria.”
I can’t do this… I… I… I’m going to be captured by Emeladia…!
The main game hasn’t started yet. Even though I haven’t met a single capture target. Even though there is no such route nor ending.
“Lyria, I love you, I want to be with you forever.”
Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh, I’m rushing into the Yuri Ending with this Villainess…!
- Also known as “Misattribution of Arousal”, this is a psychological phenomenon where two people put into a dangerous situation mistake the feelings of adrenaline for love and closeness with the other. This is why some people take their first dates on roller-coasters or some other thrill rides
- Intended to be Japanese slang, not sexual assault.