Chapter 2: Fourth Life
I, Lisette Ashburton, have memories from my past lives.
Humans who inherit memories like this are called “holders of past lives,” and it’s quite rare. Among them, I would probably be classified as a special case.
In my first life, I was born as a village girl in the countryside. I ended up being eaten alive after protecting a boy who was being attacked by a monster.
And in my second life, and my third life as well, I was born as different individuals in different eras, but in all of them, I had my heart eaten by the same monster while still alive on my 20th birthday and died.
No matter how many times I repeated it, no matter how much I struggled, I always die in the same way on my 20th birthday. It feels like a curse or something.
And in this fourth life, I was finally able to be born as a noble’s daughter for the first time. I had high expectations that maybe this time I could handle things well.
“I have been greatly indebted to you all this time. I would like to live quietly from now on, without ever showing my face to either of you.”
At the age of 11, I was now bowing deeply.
Yes, unexpectedly, before I turned 20, I was almost killed by my mother-in-law and sister-in-law. I miraculously survived, but as someone who became an expert on dying, I could tell that they were very serious.
With Okaa-sama deceased and Otoo-sama bedridden with illness, they now hold the real power in the Count’s household. As a mere child, I have no power. If things continue like this, I will be killed.
By the way, the reason they tried to kill me was apparently because the prince they were targeting fell in love with me at first sight when I picked up the handkerchief he dropped. It’s too unreasonable to be loved and killed for such a trivial reason. But I suppose I was just a nuisance from the beginning. It was all just a mere trigger, an excuse for my mother-in-law and sister-in-law to come after me.
Anyway, I no longer want to die early. It’s too soon to die. I don’t ask for a long life or one of luxury, but I want to at least experience love, get married, and live until around 40.
With that in mind, I had no trouble deciding to leave the house. In the first place, based on my past lives, I’m more suited for a commoner’s life, which is longer than the life of a noble.
“…Are you serious?”
“Yes, of course. I am an outrageous person who unconsciously used my charms on the prince whom Onee-sama admires. From now on, I will live in a monastery, reflecting on myself for the rest of my life.”
“I see, you understand it well.”
And with a slight bow, I left quickly, holding a small bag in both hands, leaving behind my bewildered stepmother and sister-in-law.
──In my past lives, I had learned that there are things more important than pride. Yes, of course, life itself.
By the way, in this fourth life, I learned about the existence of a sanctuary where monsters do not appear.
Even though it was said that monsters didn’t appear in urban areas in my previous lives, they appeared normally, and I was eaten easily. So it may not have much meaning. But it’s worth a try. Besides, I haven’t found a better method so far.
And I had long realized that the thing who eats me every time is definitely something that ordinary humans can’t deal with. It was also traumatizing for me that in a past life, I involved a knight who tried to protect me and ended up getting him killed.
“…I don’t want to involve anyone anymore.”
Anyway, in this life, I plan to spend my 20th birthday alone in the sanctuary. If it doesn’t work out, I can think about it in the next life.
Of course, if possible, I don’t want to die. By the way, the moment of being eaten is so painful that I wish they would let me die quickly. I definitely don’t want to experience that suffering again.
And after leaving the Count’s house and pretending to head to the monastery, I helped the orphaned children, bid farewell to the maid Liala, and then escaped from the carriage I was riding in the middle of the journey. I changed to another carriage and disappeared, safely reaching the sanctuary.
Until the very last moment before my 20th birthday, I considered being in another place. It might be a place where I’ll live my whole life, so I thought it would be better to get used to it early. And I thought I would have more freedom there than living in a monastery.
However, after arriving at the sanctuary, I suffered from unexplained physical ailments and spent days bedridden. I was mysteriously coughing up blood and had severe insomnia, but by the time a year had passed, all the symptoms had completely disappeared.
Since then, at the age of 12, I used the knowledge and determination from my past life as a peasant and worked desperately, day by day, while living with gratitude for being alive.
Before I knew it, seven years had passed in the blink of an eye.