A handsome man was crying while looking at me.
The outstretched hand was shaking pitifully, and the black eyes shook helplessly.
“Rena, it’s you, isn’t it? Or have I finally gone mad?”
“Say something, please.”
I was frozen, speechless until a man approached me and rubbed my cheek.
It wasn’t part of my plans to meet Calix here.
How did this happen? I bit my lip in frustration.
As if he didn’t care about my silence, the man continued to say what he wanted to say.
“I knew you were alive.
Even if everyone else told me that there was no possible chance… I knew you were alive.”
The trembling voice was filled with anxiety and joy to meet me again.
The man raised my hand and kissed it.
While listening to his desperate words, I was occupied with different thoughts in my mind.
How can I deal with this situation?
What should I say to a man who met his first love again after five years, whose disappearance was disguised as death?
When I didn’t answer, the hand of the man who held my arm slowly became tense.
There was only one thing to say to him, who was anxious that I would disappear again at any time.
“Rena, I really…”
“I’m sorry, but who are you?”
The man’s voice snapped.
“I don’t know you.
I think you’ve got the wrong person.”
“Are you kidding?”
“I’m not kidding.
Today’s the first time I’ve ever seen you.”
‘Just pretend you don’t know.
The man wouldn’t believe it, but I thought I could buy some time with this.’
I thought I could pull it off.
“Rena, have you forgotten me?”
“I’m sorry, but I don’t remember you.”
But I was naïve, and he was more clever than I thought.
As soon as he let go of his initial shock, Calix, the male lead of this novel, spoke with his eyes drooping sadly.
“…Rena, we were married.”
‘When did we ever?!’
This was all because I failed to escape this novel five years ago.
If I were to choose a more fundamental reason, I could point out that I suddenly transmigrated into this novel one day seven years ago.
I recalled the first time I transmigrated into this novel, seven years ago, while in the carriage I was forced to ride in after being caught by Calix.
It was the day after I fell asleep after reading a romance novel, which was my usual hobby.
When I opened my eyes, the ceiling in front of me was strange.
As soon as I recognized the abnormality, the hand I lifted and looked at wasn’t even my hand.
‘It’s small, like a child’s hand.’
Immediately after, a loud voice was heard from somewhere.
“Regina! Didn’t you say that today is the day the son of the Hertrio family is coming?”
‘The Hertrio family?’
As soon as I recognized the name, a strange feeling of déjà vu came over me.
“If it’s Hertrio, it’s the family of the male lead in the novel I read yesterday…”
At that moment, the door burst open.
Suddenly, I looked up and saw a man appearing.
“Regina, how long are you going to stay asleep? I’ve told you many times that you should wake up early today to get ready.”
The red-haired woman looked at me with a scolding expression.
I looked down at my little hands again, still confused about the situation.
My head was spinning due to the overflow of information.
A thunderbolt of realization struck me.
“The romance novel I was reading yesterday…”
I groaned and closed my eyes tightly.
I could feel the woman in front of me getting confused when she saw me not even thinking about getting up, but she had no time to care.
It was my top priority to understand this absurd situation.
Regina Rohelo Troxia.
A supporting character in a romance novel I was reading until yesterday, and the first love of the male lead, who dies before the story begins in earnest.
I possessed that body.
The male protagonist of the novel is Calix Axel Hertrio.
When he turned 14, he lost his first love, a childhood friend.
It was because Regina’s family, the Troxia family, was falsely accused of treason and therefore, destroyed.
Afterwards, the main plot of the novel was Calix, who had lived with his heart closed to others, meeting Frenia, the heroine of the original novel, and together finding out who was behind the false accusations against the Troxia family and uncovering the truth.
In the process, the budding affection between Frenia and Calix was a familiar and natural development.
And I possessed the first love of the male lead, Calix.
Who died at 14!
I was 12 years old at the time of my possession.
As planned, I was destined to die two years later and leave the novel.
But I wasn’t too worried.
Wouldn’t it be possible to return to my original world if I exited the novel by dying? That idea came to me all of a sudden.
It seemed like such a good idea to me that there was no reason not to give it a try.
The role of ‘the male lead’s first love’ was given to me, and if I finished this role well, I’ll be able to leave the story.
If successful, it was an ideal way to return home safely without twisting the development of the original work in order to survive.
It bothered me a little that I possessed right before the first meeting with the male lead, but it wasn’t too much of an annoyance.
After that, I lived steadily as Regina for two years.
After an impressive first meeting with Calix, the male protagonist, I became friends with him for a year while Calix was living with Count Troxia’s family.
The following year, Calix stayed with Count Troxia for only three months.
As he boarded the carriage back to the Duchy of Hertrio, he regretted our short meeting and parted ways after promising our next meeting.
I thought to myself as I watched the carriage with Calix ride away.
‘The next time you see me will be when I die.’
On that day, Calix would be heading to the Troxia Mansion the day the Troxia family was massacred, with only one single thought: to save Regina.
And in the following year, I could see the burning Troxia Mansion in the back and a sheer cliff in front.
I closed my eyes for a moment and waited for the next person in the story to come.
That is, the male protagonist, Calix Axel Hertrio, who will be traumatized after witnessing my death right in front of his eyes.
‘I’m a little sorry for giving you such a direct impact, but…?’
In the original story, Calix saw Regina being executed on the gallows.
Wouldn’t jumping off a cliff be a more reasonable death?
As someone who just has to somehow finish the original role in its prescribed order, I chose that option because it was the best out of the few options I had.
As planned, Calix will be shocked after witnessing Regiana’s death.
And seven years later, the original story will begin.
If that is the case, I can leave this world at the same time as Regina’s death and return to my original world.
There was a sense of satisfaction as everything was going as it should.
The thick smoke from the mansion being burned by the flames travelled all the way here.
I tried to ignore it because I felt like I would cry if I looked back at it.
I glared at the black night sea waiting to swallow me.
Not long after, I heard a rushing sound from behind.
It wasn’t until the voice calling me got closer that I turned my back around.
Close enough to hear each other’s voices, but still so far away that you can never reach out and grab onto each other.
Burning flames and smoke were visible in the dark night sky.
With that scene in the background, Calix was reaching out to me.
It was as if it was a scene from a movie, but only feelings of admiration came out.
Calix’s eyes shook mercilessly as if he had an ominous feeling.
“Rena, why are you standing there in such a dangerous place? …Come here, huh? Let’s go back to the Hertrio estate together.
I will hide you.
No one, no one will find you.”
“Come here, Rena.
You’re afraid of the sea.
Looking at me without waiting for an answer, Calix spoke again.
It was very desperate and sad, like he was soothing a child.
“Okay, you stay there.
I’ll come over there, so don’t take a single step…”
Looking at his face, I had a slightly different thought.
‘I’m not afraid of the sea.’
Shortly after entering this novel, Calix stayed at the Troxia Mansion.
Calix had caught me looking at the cliff I had chosen as the place I’d die.
“Why are you looking at that like that?”
Calix, whom I had just met, asked me such a question, and I just answered without hesitation or thought.
“It’s just that I’m afraid of the sea.”
“Are you afraid of the sea?”
I just watched it because I was scared of death.’
Perhaps at that time, Calix might have seen something like fear, regret, and determination that I couldn’t hide from my expression as I planned my death.
The sound of breaking twigs brought me back to reality in an instant.
As soon as Calix took a step forward, I took a step back.
“Don’t come closer.”
“I’ll jump if you come closer.”
Those words held Calix in place as if it were magic.
I nervously glanced sideways at the burning mansion.
There is no time to waste.
Soon the knights will come and I will be taken away.
Then they will find out Calix was here.
I looked down at the cliff behind me.
Even with that simple movement of the head, Calix’s face was dishevelled, as if it was going to collapse.
Let me come to you.”
What should I say to him?
You’ll be alright?
It was supposed to be like this.
But I felt that whatever I said would be considered deception.
No matter what I say, I will die anyway, and nothing will change.
I finally stopped talking and took a few more steps toward the cliff.
As I approached the edge, there was empty space with nowhere to step.
My heart was beating like crazy, as if I had a premonition of the end.
It was a struggle to breathe in a little more oxygen in this world.
Now this body will be of no use and will cool off at the bottom of the sea.
I looked at Calix’s face one last time.
I am also a human being, so when I spoke for the last time, my heart was inevitably pounding.
I didn’t know what kind of pain my death would give him, so I suddenly felt choked up.
But there was nothing I could say.
My decision was the same, and my determination of returning to my daily life hasn’t changed.
In the end, the same words came out.
“I’m sorry, Calix.”
Hearing the male lead’s pitiful cry, I threw myself toward the cliff without hesitation.
In conclusion, my su!c!de attempt failed.
I was discovered by fishermen who were out fishing.
You wouldn’t know just how surprised I was when I woke up relatively intact in an unfamiliar cabin.
I thought I’d be back in my original world the next time I opened my eyes…
The embarrassment and frustration I felt while looking at the unfamiliar ceiling that day was comparable to what I felt the day I came into this world.
Was I being too hasty? But I thought that was the only way.
It should have been.
That day, I began living with a mindset of counting down the days, my only hope being able to escape from this world.
The failed escape attempt became a bitter memory of defeat for me.
For the next five years, I quietly lived in this world.
It could be said that I had finally adapted to living in this world.
I didn’t have the courage to try the same thing a second time, especially when the first su!c!de attempt had failed.
My hair, which was nearly coral, was dyed black and my long hair was cut short.
As Regina, I was stuck in a rural village and worked as a healer with the magic I learned when I was living in the Troxia mansion.
It was enough to make a living because I had a talent for magic in my own way.
The past five years were spent like that.
‘I thought I was hiding well!’
As soon as Calix confirmed that it was me, he hugged me for a long time so that I couldn’t run away, and then he dragged me back to the carriage.
I looked out the window, pretending to be awkward while thinking about this major accident.
Pretending to be amnesic right in front of Calix.
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