The Otome Game's Bad Ending - Chapter 79
I chuckled because it was all so pointless, silly, and contemptible.
This chuckle was unlike the times I feigned a smile to insult him.
It was a hollow chuckle as if air balloons were exploding inside me.
Fragments of those burst balloons seemed to dance within me instead of hollow laughter.
“Sir Edmund Gloucester, you are something.”
This was not my intention.
I would pacify him by going to the library and letting everything slip.
I wanted to avoid getting involved if it wasn’t necessary.
I knew confronting him would be dangerous if he lost his cool.
“Do you even know what it means to like someone truly?”
The question arose from pure emptiness.
I used to feel sorry for this man.
As annoying as he was, I expected him to go insane due to Ophelia’s shadow.
I had made a mistake.
It is stated that hatred springs from love, but this was not true for Edmund Gloucester, Cassio Brahamdorff, and Raretis.
They all stayed at the Marquis’s mansion for a long time.
Ophelia never viewed Edmund as a person, although he visited her regularly, lavishing her with presents.
His adoration seemed genuine to me.
He was the man in the game who was most preoccupied with Ophelia.
I believed he’d go insane due to it, adoring even the ground where her hair fell.
But if all those feelings were all for her facade, what was the point?
What significance did it have?
I laughed because I felt a massive sensation of a vacuum.
A hollow chuckle.
Edmund Gloucester’s face hardened as he pondered my laughing.
His eyes were wavering slightly as he gazed at me desperately.
Did he wish to justify himself?
But someone else required it.
“Sir Edmund Gloucester, please leave now. I’ll visit you the day after tomorrow. Thank you for your visit today.”
I promptly stated my requirements and stood up.
Edmund Gloucester gasped, but no words came out of his mouth.
It felt good.
I might have lost my cool if he had said something stupid.
I stormed out of the drawing room, disregarding all decorum, and Kitty swiftly followed.
Kitty’s eyes were on me as I lay on my bed after entering my room and taking off my shoes.
“Miss, are you feeling very upset?”
“Do you have any siblings?”
“I have one younger brother.”
“What if you had a close sister and someone was madly in love with her? How would that work?”
“It might be a bit scary… but if they truly liked each other…”
“What if that sister died, and then that person started chasing someone who looked just like her?”
“Um… I’d be upset. But also perplexed. Perhaps they can’t forget her…”
“Honestly, whether that guy was sincere with Ophelia or not, it shouldn’t bother me.”
I was sorry for her.
That gorgeous and honorable girl who shone so brightly.
The young girl who died.
Only one person cared about me.
The girl who withered amid everyone’s adulation and acclaim…
It broke my heart to realize that, in the end, all she had was me.
I was a coward.
I knew it was a lucky break to have her seat next to her, even if it was unoccupied.
I was astute.
I didn’t want to be expelled.
Her misfortune turned out to be my good fortune.
I never found it unusual that Ophelia had viewed Edmund Gloucester as if he were worthless, with the coldest eyes.
I was living vicariously through her in certain ways.
Everyone else adored her even though she only loved me.
I saw Kitty flinch as I cursed into my pillow.
“A slimy worm, not worth the dirt on the ground.”
“Like a rag soaked in the rain for a month and never washed.”
Kitty’s lips twitched.
She appeared to want to chuckle but suppressed it owing to the gravity of the situation, fiercely trying to control her amusement.
“You are correct, Miss. That dude is a… cretin!”
“I owe an apology to the dogs. He’s worse than a dog.
“Yes, yes.Even worse than a dog!”
In her fright, Kitty’s voice trembled, but her attempt to agree looked real, possibly spurred by her pent-up animosity against Edmund for slapping me at the debutante ball.
Speaking poorly of a noble, especially one far above one’s position, requires a tremendous deal of bravery.
Her cheeks reddened from the exertion.
I softly chuckled and reached out to pinch Kitty’s face gently.
Her large, orange eyes stared at me, perplexed.
“Don’t ever get involved with a man like that, Kitty.”
Kitty nodded vigorously as if she wasn’t sure what she was consenting to.
“Feeling pity and getting involved with someone can ruin your life instantly.”
Kitty most likely didn’t understand what I was saying.
She simply seemed relieved that I appeared to be in a better mood.
I didn’t want to be reminded of Edmund Gloucester’s depravity. I was irritated.
I didn’t want to feel sorry for Elodie.
I didn’t want to be reminded that the shadow of another person may entirely wreck someone’s life.
I don’t have a powerful sense of justice.
If I can, and it’s within my means, I’ll assist someone before me, but I don’t see myself making life-or-death sacrifices for others.
That’s why I wanted to turn my head.
Despite my wish to turn away, I knew I wouldn’t be able to forget entirely.
I was aware of this even after I had abandoned everything to hide among commoners and open a coffee shop.
It seemed tranquil, but that was a deception, a cost of half-heartedly turning away and leaving my history behind.
I had planned to stand back and watch while others came to their conclusions without me.
But here I am, half-submerged in the maelstrom of chaos in which Elodie is caught.
Whatever happened, a constant, sticky remorse would cling to me like a persistent residue.
What would have happened if I had done this or that?
It has always been the situation.
If all of my options resulted in regret, I should at least make one.
Not choosing at all leads to regret.
I should have given it a shot.
I should have acted to see what would happen…
Before it’s too late, while I’m still on my own two feet.
Yes, I had to ask myself that fundamental question.
Do I want to help Elodie Dienta?
Do I want to save someone who isn’t even her, me, who couldn’t even stop her death?
‘Make it fair.’
It was a shrine.
Corpses were strewn about, their lives drained.
The bodies resembled clay rather than flesh.
Elodie’s eyes blazed eerily among them.
The altar was a giant dark stone cube.
The rough surface was heavily written with the goddess’s name in the vanished old language.
Touching it caused a chilling, chilly sensation as well as the sensation of dried blood.
Elodie muttered between parched lips.
‘I deserve it too… even if I’m only half.’
Death, and then some.
The sense of impending disaster was instinctive, like rats leaping into the water from a ship detecting a storm or birds abandoning their nests to fly far away.
Elodie was no exception.
She was only a cog in the wheel of fate in the face of a massive, fatal disaster.
Like a clock’s second hand.
Tick, tick, tick, tick.
Changing, breaking, and repeating.
Worshippers heaped sacrifices like a mountain, chanting prayers from afar like a chant.
Oh, goddess, calm your rage.
We provide you with the purest lamb.
Please avert the impending disaster.
Elodie laughed and stroked her cheek on the cool floor.
Her eyes, which were dry and damaged, did not cry.
The stupid ones…
She didn’t wish to save people during this ‘moment’ of failure.
No one would in her position.
What’s the point of longing for something impossible, something that can never come true?
She was aware of her limitations.
Too much longing was fruitless.
Her ankles felt empty, and her vision was hazy from the loss of so much blood.
Save us, God, who punishes the wicked and mocks the helpless.
The prayers merged and sounded almost thunderous.
The sound of a developing storm.
The sound of rain falling from the sky.
Elodie whispered inwardly, “Everyone will die.”
Over and over again.
Her mouth curled.
One eventually understands in the end.
It seemed as if a fire was blazing inside her.
She convulsed as she vomited something dark and red.
‘To die, that is.’
If a branch became lodged deep into her body, the sensation of it shattering into pieces signified the end.
Her eyes gleamed like olive leaves one last time.
‘So, let’s… make a deal.’
What she desired was straightforward.
A wish that, even after days, weeks, and months adrift on the sea, she might dream of standing on land again.
[Bad Ending Achievement Progress?/??]
The altar was illuminated.