Dying is a scary thought.
All I want is to survive and live comfortably for the rest of my life.
While I am immensely grateful to him for saving me and giving me my voice back, living as a caged doll for the rest of my life was not something I saw for myself.
I don’t want that, and I am not planning on spending the rest of my life next to a tyrant who would draw his sword any time he felt like it.
I know he is somehow lenient towards me, but I couldn’t ignore the fact that he’s the kind of person who would put a knife to my throat whenever he was displeased or for the reason of simply lacking sleep.
He’s the type to take his anger out on the people around him.
But what’s the point What I think doesn’t matter anyway.
My hand was slack on my chest.
I was so terrified I couldn’t even feel them anymore.
“Iona,” The emperor tried to reach out to me, his beautiful face tense and rigid.
I quickly turned to the other side just so he couldn’t put his hands on me.
I found it uncomfortable to be next to someone I couldn’t trust.
I was too numb to even move.
My feet felt like it was stuck on the floor.
I could’ve easily run away because he wasn’t as strict as he used to be, but I couldn’t.
My eyes scanned the room absentmindedly and I thought I’d be able to live a decent life abroad just by stealing something from this place.
But if I ran away, the emperor would surely turn into shambles, just like he was before.
‘Don’t go, Liliana!’ He frequently said whenever he was in the midst of his nightmares, eyebrows furrowed as he slept alone, ‘She disappeared.
In the original book, I remembered how he cried in desperation as he slowly lost himself.
He suffered when he had lost Liliana, and it was no different from the life he’s having now.
I was just a mere reader back in my previous life, who envisioned all of the scenes unfolding page after page.
But now I am inside the book I was reading, and as the emperor’s doll at that, too.
It’s the life I’ve led for the past three months.
That’s why I know the emperor would undoubtedly suffer should I run away.
No matter how good or how bad he’s treating me, I am the only one who could bring him at peace.
It was not something I could just easily ignore.
I recalled the shackles that were bound on my wrists right before I came here.
The only difference between then and now is that even if I don’t have the iron chains securing me, I still feel trapped.
I looked straight at the emperor who was standing a few feet away.
I don’t want him to get close, but I couldn’t escape from this place, “Why should I be so worried about you”
His eyes widened in shock.
It was only then did I realize what I just said and I quickly covered my mouth.
But it’s too late; the words were already out and I couldn’t take them back.
Hot tears began to flow from my eyes in a downpour.
My breaths came out staggered and I couldn’t seem to breathe properly.
I guess my emotions were so intense that it came spiraling out before I could even stop myself.
My hand flew to my chest as I clutched it tight, willing myself to calm down.
I couldn’t breathe.
I tripped on my feet as the emperor attempted to reach me for the second time.
I took a couple of steps back.
I didn’t want him near me.
I know what would happen one day, and I am afraid knowing that I would be facing my death in a year’s time.
My fate was already carved in stone and even if he said that he could change the future, I am not convinced in the slightest and I would be so betrayed when the day comes and my fate doesn’t change.
But what if I ask the female protagonist to be the doll instead of me, just like what happened at the last part of the book
I felt my heart sink from the tumultuous thoughts that filled my mind.
I bit my trembling lips and I didn’t even realize I had fallen to the floor.
I opened my mouth and tried to take a lungful of air but to no avail, feeling the world closing in on me.
Pain zipped through my skull so unforgivingly that it felt like it was breaking into two.
“Iona! Wake up!”
With my vision blurred and hazy, I saw him hurriedly approaching me with matching tears on his face.
He looked like he didn’t know what to do with himself.
His face paled seeing me as he shouted,
“Is there anyone outside! Lavis!”
I couldn’t hold on any longer.
I felt my body lean to the side and I collapsed right into the emperor’s arms.
His familiar scent and the stench of blood invaded my nostrils.
All I wanted to do was to get away from him as far as possible, but my body just wouldn’t cooperate.
I hate you so much…
Black spots filled my vision and as my eyes drifted close, I heard the door open as it banged to the opposite wall, a man wearing a priest’s uniform came dashing towards us.
People were shouting in the background and before I knew it, I completely lost consciousness.