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The Legendary Villainess Who Vanished on the Guillotine, in Her Second Life She Wishes for Peace as a Studious, Plain Glasses-Wearing Person – Chapter 43

Chapter 43: The Lone 〈Alondra〉

I have no friends.

I’ve never particularly worried about it. My parents and grandfather were always concerned, but as long as I could conduct magic research, that was enough for me.

But when did my attitude start to become annoying to those around me?

“You’re Dr. Bellis’s grandchild, right? If you just summarize the research results for us, this group work will be over in no time.”

“Oh, that’s a great idea.”

“Right? Alondra, can you do that for us?”

The magic research group work has begun, and six students, including myself, are seated at the same table.

The students in my group are unfortunately unmotivated and intend to push all the work onto me from the very beginning.

“Shouldn’t you guys think things through a bit more?”

So I told them exactly what I was thinking. Then, a frivolous-looking male student furrowed his brows in a threatening manner.

“…What did you say?”

“My research is not something a first-year student should handle. If you don’t mind the consequences of announcing your cheating loudly, I’ll gladly summarize it for you.”

To be honest, it would be faster that way, and I don’t really mind.

It seemed like he understood that I was right and gave up on pushing the work onto me with a dissatisfied groan.

“Huh, the Academy’s top genius sure has it easy. But I think you should stop looking down on others.”

And then he threw words that deeply pierced my heart.

I didn’t mean to look down on them. I’m just bad at dealing with people.

I don’t expect to be understood, nor do I want to be.

But being misunderstood like this is not something I could get used to, even if it has happened many times before.

I clenched my fists under the table.

It was then that I heard a clear voice.

“Let’s calm down first. This is group work, after all, so part of the evaluation is how well we can cooperate.”

For a moment, I didn’t know who had spoken. Everyone’s gaze wandered until it finally landed on a female student.

A girl with black hair tied in pigtails, wearing thick glasses that made it impossible to see the color of her eyes. She hadn’t spoken much until now, but when she did, her voice was surprisingly inviting to listen to.

“Delio-sama, everyone, are you not good at magic research? If that’s the case, I’ll do the work for all of you, so please don’t push everything onto one person.”

The male student who had been confronting me earlier was named Delio. Unfortunately, I didn’t know the name of the girl with pigtails either.

“Well, it’s not that we’re bad at it. Right?”

“Yeah, not good at it, but not bad either.”

“Uh, umm, it’s not that we can’t do it.”

The girl with pigtails had simply made the offer without any sarcasm.

Still, when asked if they were bad at it, their prideful hearts didn’t want to agree, so they quickly denied it.

“Then you can cooperate, right? This is a group work class, after all.”

“Well, I guess…”

Delio nodded, looking a bit puzzled. He might be surprised that he was so easily persuaded.

“Alondra, I’m happy to be working with you. Let’s do our best.”

Even though I couldn’t see her eyes hidden behind the glasses, her mouth showed a gentle smile.

Oh, I see. It’s hard to believe, but this girl defended me.

Even though I don’t even know her name.

For the first time in my life, I felt embarrassed towards someone.

I’ve been ashamed of my ignorance in academics many times. But I’ve never felt that way about a person until now.

“…I’m sorry, but may I ask your name?”

Suppressing my apologetic feelings and finally asking, her smile grew even wider.

“My name is Leticia Benito. Nice to meet you.”

After that, we started talking more as we realized we got along well.

Leticia was kind, intelligent, and had a cheerful personality despite her plain appearance.

“Alondra is such a good person, but her blunt way of speaking and shyness are her only flaws.”

I don’t find it annoying that my friend points this out straightforwardly while we have lunch in the cafeteria.

On the contrary, it’s refreshing and enjoyable. I’m happy because I know she’s saying it for my sake.

“I’m not doing it on purpose.”

“That’s why it’s such a waste. Because you’re misunderstood… like during the group work, some people get confrontational.”

Leticia speaks with a subdued voice, trying to suppress her indignation. I still can’t tell the color of her eyes hidden behind her glasses.

Leticia is in a club and fundamentally different from me, who has no other friends besides her.

However, she seems to have some kind of wall when it comes to people.

No, rather than a wall, it might be more accurate to say she draws an invisible line. She seems to interact normally, but she appears to be cautious not to stand out and not to interact with people too much.

Perhaps she’s carrying something big inside her.

My suspicions were cleared when Leticia came to my room and confessed that she was living her second life.

“…Do you believe me?”

I saw her face without glasses for the first time. So, your eyes are the color of roses.

“I believe you. It makes sense, and since it’s Leticia saying it, I believe you.”

“Alondra…”

“You’ve become an interesting research subject. Do your best to cooperate.”

When I showed her a grin, Leticia, with tears in her eyes, hugged me tightly.

She clung to me like a child clinging to their mother, not saying a word, her arms trembling with strength.

I gently patted her back.

The principle of reversing time is completely unknown, and there is no clue to unravel it, even if it’s called research.

Still, I just thought it was good.

If her first life was filled with such pain, I hope her second life can be at least peaceful.

There’s no need to get involved with the crown prince or anything like that. Just do what you like.

Forget about your first life and just be happy in this one.

You are my one and only friend. Wishing for a friend’s happiness is just natural, isn’t it?

Time passed, and it was the early summer of our second year.

“Um, actually, after a lot of things happened, I’m engaged to Camilo Cervantes…”

Leticia, who visited my room, said with blushing cheeks.

After listening carefully, I realized the situation had changed significantly. But more than the content, I felt relief upon hearing about her engagement and secretly sighed.

Ah, I’m glad. There were people who had been watching over Leticia all this time.

Camilo-dono is a good judge of character.

Leticia protected someone stubborn like me. She became my friend. She’s just a lovely, intelligent, truly caring, and gentle girl that nobody knows.

She said that she had devoted herself to others in her first life, so this time it was okay for her to live for herself.

However, despite her intentions, Leticia seemed genuinely happy since the engagement was decided.

Until now, she had been somewhat suppressing herself, but that seemed to be gradually disappearing.

I truly think it’s great. Camilo-dono will surely make Leticia happier than that worthless crown prince ever could.

So, I won’t tell her.

There’s no way I could tell kind Leticia that during the summer vacation, I had become a candidate for the crown prince’s fiancée.

If I told her, she would surely be terribly worried. She might even put herself in danger if it meant protecting her friend from a life-threatening situation.

I absolutely cannot allow that. Even if my own life is at stake, I need to deal with this issue alone.

After thinking it through, I decided to use Miss Yserra.

According to Prince Elias, the crown prince and Miss Yserra don’t get along well in this life.

In other words, it’s almost certain that Miss Yserra took advantage of Leticia in her first life. In her second life, she would most likely try to use the crown prince’s fiancée as well.

It seems that among the candidates for the fiancée, I’m the only one at the Academy.

I’ll use this situation to protect Leticia and ensure her happiness, even if it means getting involved with the crown prince and Miss Yserra.

I’m determined to take on this challenge for the sake of my dear friend.

Even though I’m close to him, my apparent lack of interest in Prince Agustin might frustrate him, and he might try to do something.

If I can successfully defend myself and apprehend him in the act, it would at least escalate into a major issue.

Even if it’s a temporary engagement, if the lover of the fiancée is harmed, it’s possible to break off the engagement, even if the other party is the crown prince.

I made sure that Camilo-dono and Prince Elias also knew that Miss Yserra was a witch, and I created a situation where Leticia needed to be guarded.

I kept the fact that I was the crown prince’s fiancée a secret. Feeling relieved that even Prince Elias didn’t know, I spent my days staying close to Leticia.

This way, Miss Yserra couldn’t lay a hand on me.

That’s right, while guarding Leticia, I was actually making sure I didn’t become the target.

And today, when the dormitory and the school were completely empty due to a practice match of the popular Mardiq Club.

Finally, with all preparations in place, I decided to put my plan into action.

Alright, no one’s here.

I checked my surroundings by peeking my head out of the door, and then I nodded slightly before leaving my room.

Thanks to the popular Mardiq Club, the dormitory population was at a bare minimum. If Miss Yserra were to make a move, there would be no better opportunity than today.

I went to the cafeteria for no particular reason, drank some coffee, and then went to the conversation room to spread the newspaper.

There, I saw an article about the royal family’s public duties and couldn’t help but frown.

Becoming the crown princess is out of the question. If I did, I would probably be killed, but I’m not the kind of person who can handle such a heavy position in the first place.

If possible, I’d like to continue my research for the rest of my life. If I marry into the royal family, my dreams would likely be shattered.

…But still, she’s not coming. Has she become afraid now? Or did I misread the situation?

No, if Miss Yserra is as strong-willed as she seems, she will surely try to do something to me using witch magic.

She’s the type of person who would fall in love with Prince Agustin on her own. Miss Yserra must surely desire him so much that she could hardly stand it.

With a small sigh, I put away the newspaper and left the parlor.

Reluctantly, I headed towards the school and decided to wander around without arousing suspicion.

However, as soon as I entered the school building and walked a little, I was spotted by a troublesome person.

“Hello, Miss Alondra. What a coincidence.”

“Your Highness Elias…”

Prince Elias, who was wearing the same uniform as me, had his usual sparkling smile on his face.

He’s the only crazy person who talks to me other than Leticia. He might also be a kind person, but his motives for getting involved are probably just whimsical.

…I really don’t like him.

I know that he’s a hard worker. If he had a personality where he could smoothly handle everything and show it off, I could have been even more dismissive of him.

“You came to school on a holiday? You didn’t go to see the practice game, huh?”

“Same goes for you.”

Without even trying to hide my annoyance, I reflexively retorted.

Then, it seemed like Prince Elias’s smile sparkled even brighter.

“Your behavior has been a little odd lately, so I had a hunch.”

…Hold on a second. Isn’t he a little too perceptive?

This is bad. If I’m with Prince Elias, Miss Yserra won’t be able to make a move even if she wants to.

What should I say to dodge the question? Leticia won’t be here to help me today.

“I’m perfectly fine.”

I couldn’t meet his sapphire blue eyes due to my agitation, and I started walking away, trying to play it off.

However, Prince Elias didn’t get angry at my behavior and casually followed me with his carefree smile.

“Is that so? You seem to be troubled about something.”

“I’m not troubled. I’m not suffering from anything. There’s no problem.”

“Hahaha, you’re the epitome of meaningless denial.”

He doesn’t even flinch from such a cold response…!

What should I do? Should I explain the situation and ask him to leave me alone?

I felt like all hope was lost, but suddenly a red mark caught my eye and I stopped in my tracks, as if receiving a revelation.

“What’s wrong, Miss Alondra?”

Looking up at the unnecessarily polished face that tilted its head curiously, I spoke in one breath.

“I’m going to pick some flowers now(?). Surely you wouldn’t do such a vulgar thing as waiting at the door, would you, Your Royal Highness?”

It was the first time I saw Prince Elias’s eyes widen in surprise.

I entered the girls’ bathroom with a sense of achievement, feeling like I wanted to pump my fist in the air. When the door closed, I couldn’t help but smile.

“…Hmph, too bad, Prince. If you have any resentment, you should resent your good breeding.”

Honestly, he’s such a nuisance. He always bothers me for no reason and mocks me for being a stubborn woman.

He enjoys seeing me worn out, that person.

I opened the small window with force. Stretching as much as I could, I peeked outside and found that it faced the space between two school buildings. It seemed that if I passed through there, I would reach the courtyard.

Using magic to fly, I finally managed to escape outside. It was a needless struggle if I hadn’t encountered Prince Elias, and it made me irritated.

After arriving in the courtyard, I sat on a bench with my book for only a few minutes when a shadow was cast on my open book. When I looked up, the person I was looking for was standing there.

“Good day, Alondra-sama. It’s rare to see you alone.”

Despite all the trouble I went through, it seems that the decisive battle will come without any warning.

Miss Yserra had a seemingly innocent smile on her face and was wearing her usual school uniform.

“Good day, Miss Yserra. I think this is our first time talking.”

“Yes, it is. I called out to you today because I had something to discuss with you.”

“Oh? What is it?”

When I asked, her lips curved into a creepy arc.

“Your Highness Agustin’s prospective new fiancée. I wonder what kind of brainwashing magic would suit you best if I want you to work harder.”

“…Brainwashing magic, huh?”

“Yes. Since I don’t know what will work, I’ll try them all in order. But first, I have to restrain you.”

As her supple hand reaches out, her deep green eyes gleam black.

Yes, I had been waiting for this moment—the moment Miss Yserra makes her move.

So, of course, I’m prepared. I have a hidden weapon in my pocket, and I’ve prepared defensive magical tools as well.

There’s no problem; I can handle this alone. Witches aren’t scary or anything like that.

This time, I’ll protect Leticia.

“Alondra!!!”

The familiar voice struck my ears just as I was about to pull out the magical tool hidden in my pocket.

Faster than I could comprehend who appeared, a black braid swept across my vision. Miss Yserra’s figure moved to the right and tumbled into the courtyard’s lawn, entangled.

At the same time, Miss Yserra’s magic seemed to go haywire, and the sound of an explosion shook my eardrums.

Although I was struck hard on my back, I didn’t feel much pain. Seeing cracked a glasses fall to the ground, I quickly thrust my elbow onto the ground and burned the image of the person who had rushed in into my eyes.

“Leticia…!”

Leticia was lying down, still in the position of shielding me. Holding her badly injured arm, she wore a weak smile.


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