I Don’t Care About Being Liked by the Capture Targets. I Will Be Myself and Free! – Chapter 33

END

Chapter 33: Epilogue

Several days after the commotion with Oliver,

Chloe was invited by Steed to the riverside in the forest.

“I finally get to be alone with you. I’ve been looking forward to this day so I can have you all to myself in a place where no one can see us.”

Her cheeks flush at his sweet words.

Steed tightens his grip on the hand he had taken to escort her, but surprisingly releases it without any further advances.

“Is your family okay?”

He asks with a refreshing smile, and she nods in response.

Was the sweet smile he showed her earlier just an illusion?

“Yes. Otou-sama promised to support Marion’s family as well.”

Since then, the two of them have been running around trying to solve Marion’s problems.

As a result, they haven’t had time to meet properly until today.

Steed’s desire to be alone with her has been put on hold for the time being, but he said it was okay.

When Steed said it was okay with him, Chloe was honestly surprised.

What does Steed think of Marion?

Of course, she couldn’t ask that question in front of Marion herself, so she had come this far without knowing his feelings.

But thanks to Steed’s proposal, Marion’s situation has improved considerably.

Thanks to Chloe’s father’s assistance, the debt problem has also been temporarily resolved.

Of course, she hasn’t forgotten what might happen between the Duke, Chloe’s father, and the Viscount, Marion’s father, two years from now.

When the time comes, she plans to scheme so that her father won’t falsely accuse the Viscount.

The engagement issue was resolved more firmly.

The real Zach Neal, as promised with Steed, rejected the engagement himself.

It was really good that Marion was no longer forced into a marriage she didn’t want.

Zach apparently rejected the engagement the next day because Steed had helped him, but when asked, he only said, “I just went to confirm things,” and didn’t give any details.

“Steed helped me a lot this time too. I want to thank him for what he did back then too. Thank you for coming to help me.”

Chloe was really scared when Oliver approached her.

When she thought it was all over, the face that came to her mind was Steed’s.

“I’m happy to be able to do something for you.”

Saying that, Steed smiles kindly.

“Even with the way I acted?”

“No matter how you act, it all looks cute to me.”

You can tell from Steed’s attitude that he doesn’t blame Chloe for the argument that day.

He is kind, so he has already forgiven Chloe.

But Chloe didn’t want to leave things ambiguous.

Because she was at fault, she couldn’t just pretend it never happened.

(Now is the time to be brave.)

Because she is a friend who is more open-hearted than anyone else, she becomes stubborn in front of Steed.

She pushes her bad self inward and faces him.

“I’m sorry for saying terrible things. I’ve wanted to apologize to you since we fought.”

“A fight? Are you talking about our lovers’ quarrel?”

“Eh?! Lovers’ quarrel?!”

Unexpectedly, she feels embarrassed in a different way from before.

Steed is chuckling, but she knows he’s not making fun of her.

His gaze is completely different from when Oliver laughs at Chloe.

Steed’s eyes, as he looks at Chloe, are filled with unwavering love no matter what.

She remembers that even on the day of that argument, it didn’t change.

Chloe puts her hand on her flushed cheek and takes a deep breath.

She can’t afford to be derailed by her embarrassment.

At least until she conveys what she’s thinking, she has to keep a calm mind.

“I regretted it right after, but now I regret it even more. If I had listened to your advice properly, I wouldn’t have put everyone in danger.”

“I was thinking the same thing after we parted ways. I should have listened to you more. I was wrong to blame you like that, even though you didn’t do anything wrong.”

“That’s too much protection. I wandered around on my own and ended up creating an unbreakable bond with the two people you warned me not to get involved with.”

“It can’t be helped. Marion was dressed as a boy, and Oliver was using a fake name.”

When she hears Oliver’s name, the anger she had been suppressing boils up.

It seems Steed feels the same way.

Only when he calls Oliver’s name, his blue eyes shine with a sharp light.

“I’m planning revenge against Oliver before I go to bed at night.”

But to be honest, if Steed were to tell her to stop, she would forget about Oliver.

It would be really difficult, but she wants to become someone who can listen to advice properly from now on.

At least, she wants to listen to the advice of someone who genuinely cares about her.

However, Steed breaks his stern expression and chuckles.

“Hehe. Chloe doesn’t waver.”

“You’re not going to stop me?”

She thought he was going to tell her to stop getting involved.

“After thinking about it, I’ve decided to change my approach. It was wrong of me to try to restrict your actions, no matter how worried I was. I don’t want to force you to do something you don’t want to do. So, I won’t stop you from doing what you want. Even if something happens, I’ll be by your side to protect you from all disasters. That’s the solution to everything.”

She blinks in surprise.

“Isn’t that too lenient on me?”

“I always want to spoil you, but this time it’s not just that. Hey, Chloe. It seems like you could become good friends with Marion.”

“Huh? ――Yes, it seems like she likes me as a friend.”

Chloe also likes Marion just as much.

But why suddenly bring up Marion?

“Do you realize? You cleared one of the major factors that could cause your downfall this time.”

“Huh?”

“Marion was truly grateful that you saved her. Even to an outsider, it was clear that she loves you. If she were to cause you to be on the brink of destruction, wouldn’t she do everything she could to protect you?”

In the game, Marion was just watching the downfall of the villainess.

This is a big difference, and Steed said that he sees hope in that.

“Also, I don’t want to admit it honestly. . .but I think you’ve become the only one for Oliver.”

“Does that mean he recognized me as his archenemy? That sounds like a route to destruction.”

“No, it’s not necessarily like that. Even if he likes or hates someone, they are still a troublesome opponent, so I’m not at ease. But I don’t think Oliver would let someone he likes die. Didn’t he say he didn’t want to be separated from you?”

“Yes. But I can’t understand Oliver’s words, they’re too indirect. I wish he would speak more clearly.”

In contrast, Chloe likes that Steed makes an effort to make himself understood.

Thanks to him explaining it several times, she was able to understand the current conversation.

Although Oliver is still an enemy, it seems that he no longer wishes for Chloe’s downfall, considering the events such as Marion’s engagement and cross-dressing that are different from the game.

“I can’t predict all the dangers, as new episodes keep happening. However, this time, you were able to eliminate a major factor of destruction by thinking and acting on your own.”

“So, my rampage wasn’t all bad?”

“Yeah. So from now on, just be yourself as usual. I’ll help you out of any predicament. If you call my name, I’ll come to help you anytime.”

Steed gently takes Chloe’s hand, bends down slightly, and brings his lips close to her fingertip.

“. . .”

The spot where his lips touch feels burning hot.

“I pledged an unwavering love to Chloe. I am your knight, only yours. From now on, too.”

Please don’t say it with such a serious look.

Feeling her ears getting hot, Chloe deliberately says with embarrassment,

“But you’re not a knight, you’re a prince.”

“Hehe, that’s right.”

“And as I always say, I don’t really understand things like love.”

“I know. That’s why I’ll teach you.”

Chloe feels dizzy as Steed takes her hand.

When she becomes aware that they are staring at each other, her heart feels like it’s about to burst.

“I don’t have time to learn that kind of thing!”

Chloe quickly tries to cover up her embarrassment.

“That’s something you can learn after you finish studying the game!”

For Chloe, love and romance are unfamiliar concepts.

But if it’s the future that Steed is showing her, then it might not be so bad.

“We have to reach the true happy ending that lies beyond the ending no matter what.”

“Yes!”

For Chloe, love and romance are elusive concepts.

However, the future that Steed shows her doesn’t seem so bad.

By the time they reach the true happy ending beyond the ending, she may have become a little more immune to love.

(The end)


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