I hope you can forgive my selfishness.
I was the daughter of an aristocratic nobleman who was a legitimate successor. As such, I naturally possessed the same blood.
However, I wasn’t loved by my father. I knew ever since I was young that I was hated. My mother had died in my stead when she had given birth to me.
Father didn’t seem to love mother. When I was little, I thought that it was inevitable for father to hate me for taking mother away from him. I also thought that the servants were also cold to me because I used my mother’s life as a stepping stone to be born.
However, I soon realized some matters. My father had a mistress, and a daughter born between them. In order to separate her from the annoyance of social circles, father never made her a second wife. For the sake of love, he enclosed them in a gentle world. I had no idea that it was a world merely for their family of three.
I rarely ever saw his mistress and daughter. To the point where I thought they were completely non-existent when I was young. And because of that, I thought it was nice. My own mother was hated for being the in-between, I wasn’t not loved, and I was never going to be loved from thereon. After realizing all of this, every time my father coldly looked at me, or threw cold words at me, I became sad, jealous and irritated at his mistress and daughter, and inadvertently, my hate for them grew.
They didn’t have much expectations for me, and I hated taking ladies’ education. I liked magic and swordplay but hated dresses and jewelry. Despite having the title of an inheritor, I was simply a hated daughter.
Even so, I thought I would be the one taking over the house. That was the only thing I had.
On the day I turned 15, the day I was looking forward to in my depressed days, I didn’t abandon the ladies’ education that I hated, all for this day. Even if nobody recognized it, I recognized my own blood. No, I had to cling to it. The chair of being a successor was my only hope after all.
“Instead of you, I’m going to make Laura my successor.”
A cold voice caused a dizziness to surge within me. Laura. That was the name of his mistress’ daughter. Laura, Laura, Laura! On my 15th birthday, I learned that everything in my life had been garbage.
I was expelled out of the residence and in exchange, I saw the moment where his mistress and daughter entered the residence. I bit my lips, clenched my fists, and hung my head down, leaving the mansion. It was a really miserable time and thinking about it now still made me feel nauseous.
After that, I joined the Knights because magic and swordsmanship were things that I liked. Even though the Order of the Knights, which protected the border, were quite well-known, they only had a worthless defense. This also worked out well for me because I had no other reason left to live for.
Becoming a Knight was a life-threatening job. However, the salary they paid was high. There were all kinds of people in this line, from rogues to nobles. But I always had my head hung down in shame. Kill, kill, hurt, kill, hurt, smash, kill, hurt. This went on repeatedly. Until I met you.
You were different. Even though you joined the knight’s organization later than I did, you still picked fights with me who was older than you. You looked down at me.
“I have a person that I like.”
You started talking about a girl you liked. A girl who had a cute smile, and who was good at singing. You nagged me about getting advice on what would be considered a good present to give to her, asking me persistently what was nice. If things didn’t go well with her, you’d be downcast all day long, and if she became delighted, you’d be in good spirits the next day. It was such a strange sight. How could you love someone so much? That you could exist just for them.
Because your love for her was so easy to see, before I knew it, all the poison in me had dissipated and I hung on to your every word. With two of us together, we held a strategy meeting on how you two could start going out together. You were someone who knew nothing of a girl’s heart and I was someone who didn’t know anything about love. Because of that, the two of us made an unexpected pair.
A long time later after a big battle, you decided to tell her your thoughts. You didn’t know when you’d die, so you wanted to tell her in advance because you knew you’d regret it if you died after.
You come back and smile with a face I have never seen before. It was the first time I’ve seen you cry and I became upset. You sit down and cry with big tears, muttering in a small voice.
“I just wanted to be loved … That was all,”
A thought pierced my heart. That’s right. I just wanted to be loved. That was all.
Even though he was the one feeling sad, tears began to well up in my eyes and before I realized it, I said.
“I will love you.”
You had a surprised look and I laughed because it looked weird.
“… Then, do you want to try going out with me?”
He muttered in a hoarse voice.
After that, our attitudes didn’t change significantly. You bothered me as much as you used to, and I laughed at it. But there was no doubt that there was something growing inside me. I want to give you this. I want to do that. If I do this, would you be happy? Is this fun for you? Such thoughts would fill my head that even during training, the boss would knock me off my feet.
I want to be loved. I want to see you. It would be a lie to say that I had no such feeling. If someone were to ask me why I liked you, I wouldn’t be able to answer well. But for some inexplicable reason, I wanted to love. I wanted to cherish this. I didn’t want you to cry. I wanted you to smile. If possible, I wanted you to be happy because of what I do.
I didn’t make a fuss about what you liked, like when you were talking about that girl, and when I was alone with you, I gave you all my attention using my eyes and attitude. I looked straight at you and smiled. Somehow I was satisfied even without having received anything. I think this was the happiest time I’ve been in my life.
A few years later you called me with a serious look. At midnight, you were kneeling in front of me, holding a colorful bouquet, in the middle of the Knight’s training grounds.
“Please go out with me!”
My mouth was agape from astonishment. Because we had already always been dating. But I’m really happy that you said this. I was very happy, but I couldn’t say anything. Did you like someone else for the last few years when you were dating me?
When you looked down and told me your honest feelings, you hurriedly shook your head. At first, I just wanted to stay connected with you because I was lonely. However, I gradually became more comfortable and grew to like you, so I regretted that having started that way. So let me tell you again.
“I’m in love and the person that I’m in love with is you!”
You spoke such frank words and called out my name. The name that had never been used by anyone from that mansion. Without becoming aware of it, I started crying, and you hugged me tightly. The boss dropped his fist at us due to making a ton of noise at midnight. Still, we both laughed at it together.
We then worked for a while in the Knights and went through a great war. You made a great achievement, and it was recognized by the country. I also got paid with a lot of salary, and I had planned to use this as an opportunity to live in a calm place somewhere else. It was such an occasion.
I got a call from my father. I’ve never given out my family name within the Knights. Someone who was sharp would have noticed it, but I left home without going through an adult ceremony, and I couldn’t be considered an aristocrat unless I gave my family name.
I didn’t want to meet them. But I thought I’d do it for the last time. I didn’t know what business they had with me but I intended to throw away my family name and be free.
Dressed in my uniform, I headed for the mansion. And what I saw in the hall was:
The daughter who became a successor smiled shyly, and you who had a ghastly pale face. I couldn’t breathe. You merely looked at me, widened your eyes, and reached out. I wanted to take that hand. However, I was too shocked to even move.
— My father’s chilly gaze pierced me.
“He’s going to become Laura’s husband.”
The shock hit me hard. No way. Father spoke indifferently, saying that Laura had fallen in love with you at the party for the award. Your family were poor aristocrats who were on the verge of collapse and were in favor of this marriage. My father was saying something else, but my head couldn’t process it. I couldn’t really understand. I only saw Laura’s shy and blissful face smiling.
You were trembling, chewing on your lips in regret and quivering. I knew you had the bloodline of a nobleman on the verge of collapse. It was not an exaggeration to say that I, who wasn’t close to my parents, was being dismissed, but I was giving most of my Knights’ salary to a reliable house servant for my little brother who had left. That little brother of mine was ill and even if a doctor were to be invited to take a look at him, a huge amount of money was needed because the disease he had was rare.
Still, you chose to live with me. My arm and your leg were heavily injured in the war and because of that, staying in the Knights wasn’t going to be safe for us anymore. I couldn’t afford the luxury for my little sibling anymore but still, you said you wanted to stay with me. I didn’t want luxury. I just wanted to live with you.
I guessed everything. You didn’t consent to this engagement. However, your family must have been convinced. A lot of money must have moved them. My father may have arranged for a doctor which on the contrary, may even have been a move to threaten me. My family was very old, venerable and powerful. For them, it was easy to tear apart a man and woman who only had a verbal promise between them.
I loved you so I understood. You weren’t happy with the current decision that was made. I wanted to reach my hand out and take you away. To where nobody was. Just the two of us.
But I knew it wouldn’t come true. My father didn’t love me. Only his mistress and his daughter were important to him. And I was sure he would do anything. For his beloved daughter Laura.
Still. But still. I had to tell everyone here that I love you.
“… Father, I…”
’“He’s going to become Laura’s husband.”
My words were cut off flatly, and in my misery, I couldn’t utter another word. Father glanced at his servant with cold eyes and I left the room in a manner that was being half dragged by them. I mustered my strength to turn around, and I saw your crying face. I love you. And. I didn’t overlook the words that you secretly mouthed. I’m sorry. And. When your mouth moved again, your tears had spilled out. The door closed and for the first time in my life, I was so angry my head had turned blank.
He cried, he cried, he cried! I intended to loosen the servant’s hold on me with all my might. But with less than half of my strength, they held me by the arm and threw me out of the mansion. I stayed at the spot I fell down on for a while before standing up silently.
I could see the sky. I was flying mid-air. It was a blue and clear sky, making today more than appropriate for the wedding of a good old aristocratic daughter and a brave young man who achieved success in the war. I cast an inadvertent glance and saw a girl dressed in white, appearing beautiful.
Fool. I sneer, spitting blood out as I laid there. With a black dress on, a red carpet gradually started to spread beneath me. I didn’t like dresses because they were difficult to move in. But sometimes you wanted me to wear them to take me to a theater. You gave me dresses that often looked good on me while I gave most of my salary to my younger sibling, and never bought anything for myself with the little money that was left. Among all those dresses, this dress was my favorite.
Colorful flowers were scattered around me. We competed like children for the number of flowers to prove that love. That’s why I couldn’t send such expensive flowers to your union. A while ago, everyone threw flowers with pure white petals into the sky to celebrate. I have never bought such high-quality flowers. I even went to the grasslands, picked a lot of flowers and went home. But today was special. With so many flowers that exceeded the amount I could hold, I jumped off the top of the church where the wedding was being held after you both came out.
I used magic to prevent my body from being messed up. Just as I thought, I was afraid that I would turn into a horrible looking lump of meat in front of my loved one. I wanted you to remember me the way you said I look beautiful. But magic could only be applied to the surface of the body and the innards of my body had gone splat with blood gushing out from my mouth and eyes.
At the edge of my blurry vision, someone had run over and the shriek of a woman sounded from afar. It was a shrill voice that made me laugh.
Hearing that voice, I felt a peace of mind. Call my name, my one and only. Ahh You’re crying so much. Poor you. But after this, can you not forget me?
That girl has everything. everything. But I have only you.
I love you and I know you love me. But the world is so unreasonable. Perhaps one day you will fall in love with that girl, as though you were rejected by the one you liked at first before gradually falling in love again, just as you had when you were with me. I didn’t like the thought of that. I couldn’t say I love you in front of my father at that time and it made me feel miserable. But still, I want you to remember. One thing and only this one thing. Don’t forget me. Once I have something in my hands, I would never want to let go of it again. I wouldn’t want to give it to anyone. Sorry. I’m sorry for doing whatever I want and making you cry so much. You hug me close to you and weep.
“… I love you.”
He whispered in a cracked voice. I also couldn’t hang my head down anymore. Whilst in the arms of my lover, I looked up to the sky and smiled.
You were crying and saying something. But I could no longer hear any voices. However, I knew what it was you were saying. I knew. So I mustered all my strength to part my lips.
“…B-because I love you…I want you to live…. ok…”
I didn’t want to die with you. I wanted you to live. Hold me so maddeningly tight that I couldn’t think of anything else.
I could barely hear any voices, but I could see a girl in a white dress. I laugh. Sneer. Like hell I’ll just hand him over to you. He’s mine. He was never yours.
Ahhhh I loved you. I did love you. very much. very very much.
Forgive my selfishness.
At the end of my lover’s scream, my consciousness broke off.