Episode 11: A Twisted Constitution (2)
The distinctive feature of women-oriented games is the abundance of high-ranking characters.
Nevertheless, he’s not just any aristocrat; he’s the head of the Duchy and the leader of the Imperial Knights. I couldn’t take lightly the idea of meddling with him, even as a joke.
“Why didn’t he appear in the game with those stats in the first place? Was that a bug?” I muttered.
Could he possibly be a hidden character? I didn’t know everything about “Victorian Love,” so even if he were a hidden character, it wouldn’t be too surprising.
‘If I knew I’d end up possessing him, I would have played the game a bit more. No, I shouldn’t have skipped through the opening video,’ I lamented.
Thinking about the game’s background was frustrating. I had become part of the game, yet I knew so little about its overall situation.
‘No, the problem is with the game itself. If there’s a hidden character, they should have at least darkened the cover to let us know there’s a hidden character,’ I grumbled.
I continued to criticize “Victorian Love” harshly, snickering to myself.
‘From the start, the settings are too biased. Even if you played diligently, there wouldn’t be much difference compared to now.’
Typically, women-oriented games have a variety of targetable characters, including emperors, princes, aristocrats, knights, and mythical creatures.
However, “Victorian Love” mainly featured key characters from the Count Bohan.
Merely playing the game wouldn’t give you any insight into the empire’s situation.
‘Ugh, why did I even bother playing this trashy game?’
Ultimately, my train of thought shifted from criticizing the game to self-pity for playing it on the release day without waiting for reviews.
As I was actively criticizing “Victorian Love,” a bell rang in my head.
※ The villainess does not engage in deep thinking.
I couldn’t agree with this opinion if it were about anything else.
‘What’s with this nonsense! You’re discriminating against the villainess right now. Villainesses are the ones who think more deeply than anyone else. That’s the only way to create trials painful enough to not kill the heroine.’
※ The misdeeds you commit are at the level of a seven-year-old child.
‘That’s because you provide such shallow choices!’
Did she think I wanted to become a villainess who yelled and whipped people? If I had to be one, I’d rather be an elegant villainess who elegantly gave orders while petting a cat.
Once I pointed it out, the system window fell silent. I turned my body to the other side.
‘Anyway, since it’s all twisted up, I need to figure out who I’m dealing with.’
I pulled the bell near the bed to summon a maid.
“Bring me the nobility registry,” I ordered.
The maid, as if ignoring my request, crouched down and lay there. She glanced at me as if startled, then quickly went out of the room.
As soon as the door closed, I felt relieved.
‘Great, there were no dialogue choices!’
It seemed that dialogue choices didn’t appear if I didn’t make eye contact when giving orders.
‘Does that mean I can control the story as I please by just keeping my head down and wandering around?’
I’m really good at keeping my head down! Before the possession, making eye contact with others was really difficult for me. And since the choices that appeared were so powerful, it was better to just keep my head down and wander around.
‘If I keep wielding the whip every day, my arm will break. I’m so weak and fragile like this.’
I was crouching like a caterpillar, but I bent my body to reach my legs. From my toes to my ankles, everything was swollen, probably due to the recoil when I kicked Julius.
‘I hope my bones aren’t broken.’
It was an injury as if I had walked all the way to the bedroom. I rubbed my foot with my palm and let out a bitter laugh.
‘Anyway, it seems like nobody cares about me.’
No matter how much of a detestable villainess I was, shouldn’t they at least check if I’m injured?
‘Sienna, you’re really all alone.’
I sighed through my nose as I thought that.
That’s when Percy’s red pupils vividly came to mind. His deep voice whispered.
– Speaking with such an embarrassing expression won’t be persuasive at all, Your Highness.
He talked about “my expression.” In fact, in a situation where I couldn’t even control my lines, expressions and gestures were an area I hadn’t thought about.
‘Why did that man say that? Could it be that my thoughts are all written on my face?’
As I pondered for a moment, I shook my head. No way. Everyone didn’t have the slightest doubt about the fact that I was a villainess. If I had made an awkward expression, anyone would have noticed that I was strange.
‘Percy Stewart. That guy is strange.’
But that was as far as my solitary thoughts could take me. Just then, a maid arrived with the nobility registry. I sat down at the table where the registry was placed. The maid lit the candles, opened the window, and swiftly exited like the wind. The night air, with its unique atmosphere, filled the room like mist.
‘No, can’t she see I’m in pain, limping like this?’
My stomach growled, and my body ached, turning my insides upside down. Feeling resentful and on the verge of tears, I clenched my fists, then shook my head.
‘These are pointless thoughts. Completely pointless.’
As the refreshing air flowed in, I began to feel a bit clearer in my mind.
I flipped through the nobility registry slowly. I didn’t need to flip through many pages; Percy’s name came up quickly.
‘Here it is. Percy Stewart.’
Followed by an extensive list of qualifications:
Succeeded Stewart Duchy at 15 years old
Winner of the Royal Fencing Tournament at 19 years old
Appointed as Commander of the Royal Knights at 24 years old
The meaning of his impressive resume was clear: he was an elite with no flaws.
‘He became a Duke at 15.’
And it was even due to the simultaneous death of the Stewart couple.
‘They’ve even sprinkled in a tragic story that adds beauty to a handsome character. It’s as if they’ve thrown in every possible narrative to create a perfect male lead.’
Since my opponent was a character in the game, I read his story with utmost composure.
‘All game settings are like that. Someone who becomes a Duke doesn’t need to work as a knight, but they do it to look cool.’
I rested my chin on my hand and stared intently at the name “Percy Stewart” for a moment.
The true male lead of this game is Daniel Bohan. But who would think that this man, no matter how you look at him, resembles a male lead?
‘Could there be a hidden story?’
Or is it a game with a dual structure? On the surface, Beth stays with Count Bohan, but behind the scenes, a more serious story is unfolding.
‘…That’s highly unlikely.’
Was there a reason to create a complex backstory in the game? Even to me, it sounded like a ridiculous thought. I shook my head, mumbling.
‘What am I even thinking?’
That’s when it happened.
“I will answer for myself.”
A low voice echoed solidly and deeply right next to me. Startled, I almost fell off the chair, but I managed to grab the edge of the table just in time.
※ You screamed in a way unbecoming of a villainess. This is your final warning.
※ There will be a penalty next time.
‘There’s even a penalty, huh.’
But then, why not just block my mouth from the start, system? It’s puzzling how I’m free to talk without any restrictions when it’s not needed, but at times like this, it’s awkward.
‘When you suddenly startle someone like this, it’s natural to be speechless.’
I turned to look beside me, lips pursed. The man I had just encountered in writing, Duke Percy Stewart, stood by the open window.
Even in the dark shadows cast by the night, his hair sparkled like starlight. He had a frightening presence, even though he smiled. His expression was icy. It felt as if a ghost or a grim reaper stood before me.
“I apologize for startling you. I will knock on the window before entering from now on.”
Percy spoke with an entirely unapologetic tone. It’s not easy to make an apology sound so arrogant. I pressed my throbbing temples with my index finger.
‘Will there be a next time? Next time, couldn’t you just open the door and come in normally?’
I wanted to ask like that, but once again, an annoying set of choices appeared.
▶ I will inform father Emperor of this fact.
▶ As punishment for trespassing in my room, I must cut off your left wrist.
‘Ah, really. It’s not easy to choose anything, let alone something like this.’
They say in life, it’s best to choose the lesser of two evils, but in these choices, the lesser evil was nowhere to be found.
‘If I inform father Emperor, will he just leave me alone? He’s such a madman, there’s no way he’d do that. But if I say I have to cut his wrist, what if he actually tries to do it?’
The other party is strange too. As I hesitated without making a decision, the choices upgraded again.
▶ Throw the nobility registry.
▶ Throw the document.
‘Why the sudden turn to violence?’
‘I’d rather quickly choose when it’s a verbal insult.’
I grumbled while looking at the two options.
‘Is it okay to choose any of these? Both the nobility registry and the document are heavy. If I hit his head, he might die.’
So, am I not headed for a guillotine ending too? Hitting a duke with a document…
Just like when I said I hit a maid with a wine bottle, it seemed like no matter what the choice, it always ends in violence.
‘Well, I guess option 1 is better.’
The document is a chunk of stone, while a nobility registry is still a book.
If he end up dying from getting hit, it seemed like the nobility registry would at least not be recognized as a murder weapon.
With that in mind, I chose option 1 after careful consideration. It was when I was about to throw the book I had just opened in his direction.
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