Author: Lioness

FAKES DON’T WANT TO BE REAL

~ 101 ~

 

* * *

After recovering from slaying the monsters, Verndia visited her as usual since he missed her. He asked if she had slept well and if anything had happened during the night.

 

“Mmm.”

 

Psychke opened her lips softly, one eye squinting as she thought about something.

 

“I had a weird dream about walking down a long hallway and meeting someone.”

“I see.”

 

He wasn’t sure what was uncanny in her dream, nodding his head away. Then, she continued.

 

“I’ve been having the same dream for about two months now. After dreaming it, I’d feel awful.”

“Two months?”

 

Since he was researching the taboos of Silkisia, the two-month time frame bothered him. She was staying here for only the same time period. Verndia narrowed his eyes, realizing was indeed suspicious.

 

“Was it the same in the capital?”

“Not literally after I arrived in the North.”

“Can you explain what those corridors look like?”

“It’s-”

 

Psychke, who was about to obediently describe the shape of the corridor, froze. Her blue eyes, which had been shining so brightly, became cloudy.

She grabbed the knife Mia had given her earlier, swinging it wildly and without hesitation. It was an unexpected attack, thankfully he dodged it on time.

Here he assumed he was fine all these days because she had behaved. However, as he didn’t want her to feel guilty over her actions, he always finds excuses.

Such as, ‘You’re overworked, and sleep deprived. You fell asleep due to exhaustion; you should get some rest…

He didn’t know if she believed his words, but he had no other choice. He couldn’t afford to tell her the truth. Verndia grabbed her wrist tightly.

 

‘What could be the alibi today? She fainted? No, I’ve used that before.’

 

It was harder to come up with an excuse than it was to stop her. Verndia was lost in thought for a moment. He was so lost in thought that he didn’t quickly realize that she had returned to her normal state.

 

“… Oh?”

 

Pyschke was stunned as she came back to her senses. She must have fallen asleep during their conversation, yet she was holding a knife, aimed at the Duke’s throat.

He was blocking her with a nonchalant face. A feeling of similarity settled in her heart as she gazed at what was happening.

 

‘What is happening right now?’

 

Suddenly, she remembered washing her hands in the stream and holding a strange sign. She wondered if that piece of memory seemed to be missing all this time. Verndia, on the other hand, interlocked eyes with her.

 

“…….”

 

His violet eyes fluctuated, which she unfortunately saw.

Her guess was correct, and she stammered through her lips.

 

“What… what was I trying to do? It isn’t what I think it was… right?”

 

What other reason could there be for attacking someone with a sword in the middle of a conversation?

Verndia was speechless while she fell in despair.

 

“Since when have I been like this?”

“…….”

“Tell me.”

 

She lowered the knife with a disbelievingly sigh.

 

“I had been like this every time, right?”

 

Verndia uncharacteristically avoided her gaze. It was a silence of affirmation. Psychke felt her eyes grow dizzy.

She’d been blacking out shortly after catching her breath from the first-time slaughtering monsters, so had it been happening ever since?

 

‘If the unquenchable flame is extinguished this time, it will be because of you.’

 

The words she heard from Widnix months ago echoed in her ears.

This was what he meant.

For a moment, the blood in his veins seemed to run cold, and Psychke backed away from Verndia.

But before he could take another step, a voice, lower than usual, stopped him in her tracks.

 

“Where are you going?”

 

A warm hand wrapped around her wrist.

It felt like keyless handcuffs, and she couldn’t shake it off.

Sensing that Psychke had made up her mind to leave Lestir, Verndia bit his lip and snapped.

 

“The princess belongs here, so where do you you’re going?”

“Let go of me.”

 

Right after her words fell, he pulled her into his embrace; the faint scent of bergamot on him grew stronger in her nose. She squirmed inside his arms, but he was stronger than her.

 

“Let go, Duke.”

“Stay still.”

“Please.”

“Rielle.”

 

She froze at the change of title.

In the meantime, Verndia wrapped his arms tightly around her, making sure she would be unable to break free.

 

“I’m going somewhere.”

“… Let go of me.”

“You say that again, and I’ll tie you up for life.”

(TN: I don’t mind that Verndia~)

 

Realizing the sincerity in her tone, Psyche immediately shut up. She felt the seriousness in is voice, causing her to shut up instantly. He was still enraged, burying his lips in her silver hair, and hissed.

 

“I told you, don’t even think about leaving Lestir. If you don’t want to see what I’d become, you’d better not leave.”

 

Goosebumps rose at the sound of his breath in her ear.

Psychke stiffened, unable to even blink.

 

“Isn’t that what you wanted to know?”

 

His voice was part laughing, part crying. Somehow he sounded amused and tormented.

 

“Tell me.”

 

His red lips curled.

 

“Is that what you wanted to know.”

“No.”

 

Pyschke could barely catch up her breath as she spoke beneath her mouth.

 

“Th, then why did you say that?”

 

With an exasperated look, Verndia released slightly released her. Despite being unchained, she didn’t look up at him, which only added to the displeasure he felt. He lifted her chin with an exasperated look.

 

“Look at me.”

 

Only then could Psychke look at him. his eyes carried odd melancholy, as though he was a man on the edge of a cliff, a crack of loom in his violet eyes.

 

“Now I could see you.”

“…….”

“What do you think?”

 

The blue eyes that held nothing but him widened. She doesn’t know what to say. She attempted opening her mouth, but saying anything felt like she would hurt him. It wasn’t her will to leave him, but because she wanted to keep him alive. She didn’t want him to die for her.

Psychke held back the urge to cry.

 

“I don’t want the Duke to die.”

“Then stay.”

“If it’s because of my power, and Lia hasn’t invented a resistance for it for you, I am the one putting you in danger. So—”

 

I trailed off, sounding deliberately mean. Her deliberate mean words were cut off without hesitation. Verndia placed his lips together with her; harsh and fast.

 

“……!”

 

His kiss was that of an animal. It lacked warmth, as if a beast devouring prey.

With his action, her breath was stuck in her throat.  Psychke’s pleading voice died in her throat, tangled in his hot breath.

She pushed against his chest in frustration, but he didn’t budge.

Instead, he used his arms as chains to keep her from escaping.

He badly wanted her.

 

“Stop…”

 

Unable to breathe properly, Psychke paled, and he reluctantly pulled his lips away.

A thin silvery thread stretched out when their lips parted, while his arms wrapped around her back.

Verndia buried his face in her shoulder.

 

“Why do you make people so crazy, huh? Why do you make them so crazy…”

 

His sweet voice twisted into a whisper.

Psychke was star struck.

 

“Ha…….”

 

She blew out a long breath and was crushed into a hug. Her ear was hot against his wet lips. The pressure in her chest made it hard to breathe, buts he didn’t argue.

 

“Do you think I’ll live if you leave?”

 

He even mumbled it was already too late for her to leave.

 

“If you were going to leave, you should have left. You should have walked away when I gave you the choice.”

 

He ran his lips through his silver hair.

 

“I don’t care if it’s Widnix, I’ll blow up the East if that happened.”

“I’m going to…, Duke.”

“I mean it.”

 

Verndia said with force. His eyes, more ferocious than ever, burned brightly like fires.

 

“I’m serious.”

“Then what do I do?”

 

Psychke sobbed at last.

 

“The Duke is dying because of me, so what am I supposed to do?”

“I don’t mind dying if you stay with me.”

“Who doesn’t mind dying?”

“I wasn’t going to tell you this.”

 

The corners of Verndia’s mouth turned up as he soothed Psychke but his eyes were unsmiling.

 

“I will show you my power.”

 

He spoke of the power he hated so much, a power he had never spoken of to anyone in this world.

 

“If I plunge the Sword of Lestir into my heart, I can turn back time. There are consequences, of course, but…”

“…. What?”

 

Psychke’s eyes widened. Time traveling, does he mean if he died, he could easily regress?

Verndia prettily smiled as he hugged her even tighter, frozen in shock. He nipped her earlobe with his lips, as if to punish her for daring to leave him.

Then he whispered softly, never to be forgotten.

 

“So, I can die.”

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