First Year First Semester – Q of Hearts (Part 3)
Note: Please don’t read it in the little pop-up for the reader. For some reason it doesn’t reflect my later edits (which I often make a lot of after publishing), so please click ‘view original’.
1) I know, I know, it’s like “you’re telling us after all this time?”, but I’d just like to mention that I use ‘mana’ and ‘magic power’ interchangeably because I’m just random like that. Same thing.
2) Stereotypical shoujo KabeDON(壁ドン, wall bang) scene. KabeDON (wall bang, or wall smack). New word for you all to add to your shoujo manga lingo.
2) Nioh Statues:
Basically a serious and imposing stance.
3) Whether speaking politely or casually, Beatrix uses a somewhat masculine tone. It’s not rough, but it’s masculine.
4) You know, I’m starting to wonder now, after all this time, if perhaps Makoto was actually really obviously into Aimi, and she was just too much of a dense motherfucker to notice.
5) LOL, who on earth tagged this?
When my words wouldn’t come out, unexpectedly, it was Beatrix that gave me a lifeboat.
“Waka-sama, Camille-sama must also have her own circumstances. Impatient men end up hated, you know. …Camille-sama, please help yourself to the tea. This time we’ve prepared a variety of magic tea that’s relatively easier to drink.”
I held the magic tea in my mouth. It was a refreshing tea with the faint scent of flowers. Just like Beatrix said, it was easy to drink.
When I said that, Beatrix smiled happily.
“It’s just a slight effect, but that tea contains the ability to reduce weariness and help replenish magic power.”
Mana recovery is something to be grateful for. Especially to those in my line of work.
To a magician, running out of magic power is a troubling problem. Magicians who run out of magic power while on the job will suddenly collapse and become bedridden for three days.
My magic tattoos have the effect of optimising mana consumption, but even then, there’s no way I can use magic without using any magic power at all.
“Ah, that’s right. Waka-sama, after your tea time is done, would it be fine if I borrowed Camille-sama for a little while?”
“Why? Today I was the one who invited Camille, thoughh?”
“You don’t have that much free time, correct? Were not the results of your supplementary exam quite poor?”
“Donnnn’t waaaannnaaaa! I’m about to talk to Camille about lots of different things.”
Tria took my hand. But. Beatrix mercilessly smacked his hand away.
“Please be silent! Did His Majesty not say that if you failed again, you would be forcefully repatriated?”
“His Majesty gave you permission to study abroad based on the reason that you would be “trying hard at studies”, you know?”
Beatrix has no mercy with Tria. As expected, even Tria doesn’t seem to be able to refute her.
“Tria-sama, you were in such a bad situation? Wouldn’t it be better if you studied?”
“Camille! But today was…”
“Waka-sama. If you obtain over 80% in the exam at the end of the supplementary lessons, His Highness may well reconsider, you know? We’ve discussed this… Now then, what will you do, Waka-sama?”
Tria was agonising over it. Unwilling to overlook this gap, Beatrix pressed him further.
“Just by getting over 80% in the supplementary lesson’s final test, you’ll be able to escape from repatriation.”
“I get it! All I need is 80% right? I’ll do it!”
“That’s the spirit!”
“Sorry Camille, even though I invited you here. I’ll definitely make up for this!”
Said Tria, as he grasped my two hands apologetically, before leaving the room, his accessories jingly and jangly all the while.
“We-ll-then. The noisy one has left the room now, hasn’t he…? Camille-sama, I’d like to have a little chat with you, so would that be all right?”
Beatrix who had referred to the prince of her own country as “the noisy one” turned to me.
Going by the conversation earlier, it seems that she has some business with me.
“Eh-, mn. Go ahead?”
I timidly replied to her.
“I shall go straight to the point. Are you, like me, …a person from a different world?”
Beatrix was looking straight at me.
I was thinking that she was very different from the in-game Beatrix, and it seems that she too was someone who was thrown into this world.
Now then, how should I answer.
Would it be better if I just honestly revealed everything, or should I hide anything that she doesn’t already know?
She’s from the Diamonds faction; an enemy force, as it were.
“The original Camille Rhodolite wouldn’t have gotten into something like an engagement with Achille Jade. Her magic was also not as good as yours. She was a woman who did nothing other than chase Royce-sama about… Though, similarly, I too am very far from the original Beatrix Tapas.”
She began telling me about herself.
About how she was originally a Japanese university student, and after falling into a manhole, she came to this world. About how she knew that this game was that of an otome game, and she had completely cleared that game…
About how the result of her efforts so that she didn’t end up with the same fate as Beatrix was that the situation around her became very different from how it was in the game, and in particular how she had an influence on Tria.
She revealed everything to me, without hiding a thing.
Moved by her sincerity, I felt like being frank about my circumstances as well.
“I see. I’m like you… somebody who came from another world. I fell down the emergency stairs at high school, and I ended up as the three year old Camille in this game world…”
“I knew it!”
Beatrix hugged me. I can smell a gentle and faint musk perfume on her.
“Sorry, I was just too happy… Once I thought that it wasn’t just me.”
Without being able to tell anyone anything, in order to twist her fate, she fought a lonely battle.
In comparison, I’ve been living a very comfortable life…
There was also a period when I couldn’t accept this world, but after that, I did whatever I wanted to master magic, and ended up where I am now.
Royce-sama isn’t avoiding me, and Achille became my fiancé. I’m on good terms with my father as well.
“It’s not just me, you know? I probably know of two other people who came from another world.”
“Who is it? Could it be the Q of Clovers who failed the exam?”
“No, I don’t know that person… Also, you don’t have to use keigo with me, you know? In our original worlds, you’re my elder after all.”
“…Well then, as long as we aren’t in public, I’ll take you up on your offer… If it’s not the Q of Clovers, then who?”
“The Heroine, and probably the Q of Spades is the same as us. …It looks like the Q of Spades doesn’t have any knowledge of the game, though. I think that she might have come to this world at quite a young age.”
“The Heroine is here too? Even though it’s only the first year… She’s supposed to enter next year, right?”
“Right. But she was at the event held after the entrance ceremony. She asked me “Are you a bodyswapper?”. It looked like she also knew about Royce-sama and Achille.”
“That means… there’s a good chance that she’s a person who’s played the game, doesn’t it? What kind of girl is the Heroine?”
“…I don’t really know.”
At the time, the Heroine had probably wanted to say something. Because of the alcohol, my memories are a bit fuzzy, you know?
“I see. It seems that you’re not on good terms with the Heroine, huh?”
“If it’s Mei-chan, then it’s good terms, you know? …When Raiga-sama isn’t with her, I might be able to lure her out.”
When I brought up Raiga’s name, Beatrix suddenly had a huge reaction.
“Raiga? That’s right, what kind of relationship do Mei and Raiga have? At the entrance ceremony, they seemed very close, but…”
“The two of them are engaged, you see.”
“No way! …So the two of them really are together? He’s already impossible as a love interest…?”
I wonder why, but it looks like Beatrix has received quite the shock.
Could it be that she’s a Raiga fan?
In that case, there’s no mistake that it’d be a shock. I mean, if it were me, and the moment I met Royce-sama in this world, he already had something like a fiancée, I’d probably be intensely depressed.
“By the way, Beatrix. At the entrance ceremony, I didn’t spot the J of Diamonds, but is he at this school?”
“A-, ahh… J huh? He’s supposed to be in the same faction, but I’ve never met him before. He hasn’t entered the school either.”
Perhaps because she was still under the shock from before, Beatrix was quite shaken.
“He’s not here? At this school?”
The J of Diamonds lived in Topageria, and was the son of a merchant that did business all over the world. Of course, he was super rich.
In the game, he was a character that gave the feeling of a generous older brother who was good at looking after others.
“So the Q of Clovers, the J of Diamonds, as well as the J of Spades aren’t at the school, huh…?”
It’s already something impossible to predict.
“”Y-, You’re right… It’s become something strange, huh?”
Ever since we spoke about Raiga and Mei, Beatrix hasn’t really been paying attention.
“Shall I try speaking to Mei-chan?”
“Would that be all right?”
“Mn. Mei-chan is a good girl after all. I’m sure she’ll say okay.”
Because Otome Game Comrades in the same situation have increased, I’m feeling reassured as well.
To me, becoming friendly with Beatrix was a huge gain.
After I left Tria’s room to head back to my dorm, I found Achille standing in front of my door.
The way he’s standing… looks a bit like this statue I saw long ago, doesn’t it? Right! It was the Niou statue!
“Camille, where were you, until an hour like this?”
After the supplementary exam, school had finished, and after that I went to play at the Diamonds dorm, so I ended up returning to the dorm late.
It’s already time to sleep. I might have needlessly worried Achille.
While unlocking the lock to my room, I answered Achille.
“Where? Um, to the Diamonds dorm, but?”
“The Diamonds dorm? What were you doing at such a place?”
For a moment, Achille looked shocked.
“I went to play at Tria’s, and got friendly with Beatrix.”
Hmm? Achille seems kind of weird.
“Come here for a minute!”
Achille grabbed my hand, and brought us into my room himself.
“What? This is my room, but… You can’t sleep, so you want to play trumps?”
“…Camille, you really don’t have even a little sense of wariness, do you?”
“Wariness? Did some incident happen or something?”
“That’s not what I mean. Camille, you have too little wariness towards men… If you go wandering about by yourself, moreover, following a guy into his room at this hour, what are you going to do if something happens?”
“Nothing happened you know, we just ate cake and drank magic tea. It might be the stronghold of the Diamonds faction, but something like what you’re worrying about…”
“Camille, that isn’t what I’m talking about.”
Suddenly, Achille closed the distance between us.
“What I’m worried about, is this kind of thing, you know?”
With another step, Achille drew in towards me.
I unconsciously backpedalled, but behind me was a wall.
Achille placed both of his hands on the wall around my face, and closed me in. Achille was in a position where he was peering directly into my face. Isn’t this, what’s commonly known as a KabeDON…?
Won’t this end up once again like that sweet atmosphere from a while ago?
“Even though you’ve got me, a fiancé, what are you going to do if after wandering about and following some other guy around, you get this done to you?”
Achille is way too close! Even if I try to escape, there are no openings though…
What do I do? What do I say? I’m just flustered, and a good idea won’t come to mind.
“Umm… Achille, umm-”
“Hey, Camille? I’m not as tolerant as you are, so I wouldn’t be able to overlook my fiancée’s cheating.”
Achille came even closer, and he’s already at a distance where I can feel his breath.
What kind of incomprehensible stuff is he talking about?
Even though all I did was enjoy myself to some magic tea, and didn’t do anything to feel guilty about…
For a while now, Achille hasn’t taken his cobalt eyes off of mine.
Perhaps because of nervousness, my heart is beating like a hammer. Why does my heart have to beat so quickly like this? I’m innocent!
The moment I thought to refute with this, Achille moved his face even closer…
…His lips, softly touched mine.
I-, Is this a… k-, k-k-k-k-, a kiss?
The rebuttal I came up with has completely disappeared from my head. Holy crap!
After Achille slowly parted his lips from mine, his eyes narrowed in satisfaction.
“Goodnight, Camille. If you’ve learned your lesson with this, next time be more careful, okay?”
Leaving me still frozen up against the wall, Achille left my room.
What the heck was that?
After being released from the tension I had all that time, with my hands still over my lips, I slid helplessly to the ground.
Even though Achille has already left, my heart is still pounding away.