”Aramus Lysander Valentine looked at Kalypso with a smile, his dark red eyes glowing with interest. ” — The Lovable Villainess, Chapter 12

. . .

Who was this?

A tall man, cigar hanging from his lips, glasses framing his figure as the fire behind him glowed beneath the frames. His red hair was kept up in a ponytail, long enough to become a messy afterthought. Yet, in the basking glow of the fire, he looked nothing short of handsome. He was tall, his physique well-toned and his sanguine eyes stared directly at me.

Was I still smoldering?

I looked down at my hands still coated, basking in flames.

e interesting, ” he said leaning down to the ground. Inadvertently, I flinched away from him. I stumbled back, my body collapsing to the ground. I was startled by his movement and on instinct, I had moved to protect myself. I wanted to shield myself from his wrath.

Wasn that how Kalypso was described in the novel? I didn even remember. I couldn even think straight anymore. Did it even matter?

”What are you doing? ” A voice asked, somewhat exasperated as I looked to see a male with red hair and black eyes. He was a little older than me. Arms crossed over his chest, eyes looking at the older man with annoyance, ”Are you alright, Young Lady? ”

I needed to move. I needed to say something. Who were they and why were they are?

”This Young Lady started this fire, ” the older gentleman said huffing on his cigar as the younger man narrowed his eyes at the smoke before finally understanding the words spoken. He turned to me.

”Did you? ”

”Did you?! ” A voice shrieked. I turned around instantly to face my mother. She was in a nightgown, her gorgeous green hair looking almost fae-like in the moonlight. The flickering flames illuminated her face as I scrambled up from the ground away from her. My dress was dirty anyways and my body was reaching its limit but I needed to run.

This was my chance. My green eyes managed to look at the forest but before I could even move, the older man plucked me from the ground. His hand grabbed my dingy dress and before I knew it, I was cradled against his chest. He had stopped smoking his cigar, the remnants on the ground.

”E-Excuse me! ” I stuttered out, but I couldn think of anything else. My brain was so fogged up. I needed to escape, ”You have to let me leave. ” The words sounded delirious and even my acumen could figure out that I sounded as if I was speaking in riddles. It felt as if I was some dumb child trying to leave the comfort of parents who loved me.

No. I needed to leave. I squirmed in his arms, trying to run away into the woods.

”Please you have to let me go, ” I begged. Why didn he understand? I needed to leave. I couldn stay there anymore. Now, living as Ceasaria and truly becoming her, I couldn do this anymore. I don know how Ceasaria lived this long without going mad.

How did I do it? I couldn . If the original novel wasn real maybe the ”Lovable Villainess ” also wasn real. Maybe I could leave. I needed to get away as fast I could.

I didn know how much more I could take. I couldn be alone anymore. I couldn endure the pain. I couldn stand the hatred. I needed to leave. I was so willing to burn everyone else down with me because I was so selfish. Perhaps, I was a villain. Maybe, the angelic heroine really didn exist and in its stead was me, a flawed person.

I didn want to die. I felt like I was dying and the woods grew blurrier and blurrier. I reached out to the woods.

”Please, ” I begged, my voice growing hoarse, ”I need to go. Please. Just let me go. ” Was I starting to cry? My desperation felt so palpable that the older male looked down at me with a mixture of emotions. If only I could see his face if only I wasn so consumed with the woods in the distance. I needed to leave.

”Oi, Cain, shes burning up. ”

”What?! ”

The younger male quickly placed a hand on my cheek, his hand felt cold and comforting.

”Kid, close your eyes, ” the older man, put his gloved hand over my eyes.

”I— ”

I didn want to close my eyes but in the end. I couldn fight it anymore. I was too tired. I would have to deal with everything in the morning.

”Is this your child? ” Cain asked, looking at the older man.

Cradled in his arms, he looked down at the young girl who was sleeping. She felt lighter than anything hes carried, even the sword by his side felt as though it had more weight. The smell of blood surrounded her, ash following the heavy metallic undertone. She was covered in soot, her tear-stained expression finally falling into peace.

”Cain, ” The taller male drawled out, ”Deal with it. Ill be bringing her back to our house. ”

”W-What?! ”

”F-Father what are you talking about?! ”

Aramus smiled staring down at his son, ”What do you think I mean? ” He asked as he looked down at the girl, ”Oh, make sure to get her name. ”

”W-What are you doing?! ” The green-haired woman asked, clutching at her skirts, ”Y-You can just take her! ” She yelled.

Cain sighed, pressing a finger against his temple, ”Sadly, Father can do whatever he pleases. You should do well to know this, Lady Bella. ” His fathers figure had vanished as he opened a magic portal to step into leaving his son to deal with the aftermath. What a horrible father figure. A sigh escaped Cains lips as he looked at the two.

e lucky that the two of you have escaped with your life, ” Cain chided, ”Child abuse is— ”

”We never— ”

”Did I say that you could cut me off? ”

The green-haired female fell back to the ground clawing at her throat as Cains eyes stared mercilessly down, ”I feel as though I spoke too quickly. ” Snapping his fingers, the womans eyes rolled back and her corpse fell to the ground.

”Y-YOU KILLED HER! ” Her husband screamed, grabbing the corpse with wide eyes.

”Don worry, the two of you can meet again if thats what you believe. ”

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