My Demon Queen
A few weeks ago..
"You called father?"
I entered the office. There, my father on his chair-- facing away from me spoke.
"Take a seat," with the most dramatic tone he could muster, sounding like a yakuza with a missing cigarette.
"What's this about?" I asked in a flat tone.
He spun himself around, elbows on the table, hands weaved together to support his chin.
"This is about Liliath. How do you feel about her. honestly, Noel."
My body froze up, like a lightning bolt had just struck out of nowhere. I wanted to speak but there was something caught in my throat. My saliva obviously.
"I suppose that's the answer.. i won't pursue the matter further," my father continued in a matter-of-fact tone. "Here's the thing, you're already aware of the risk when you're together with LIliath correct?"
Yeah, Liliath is a Demon Lord.
Not to mention the kind of person she is.
'Don't trust me.'
Her words echoed in my mind once again.
"Don't let it get to you," my father smiled.
"See here, fear is one of the strongest emotions in the world. Fear is what causes a relationship to break down. Take for example.. me. I'm not a perfect spouse.. There are times when your mom and I give each other the cold shoulder. But the root of it all is what? It's fear. Fear is what causes us to close up.. to act defensive, afraid of facing each other, causing us to make mistakes. Get that?"
The last time I had fear take over my system was when I doubted Liliath. When i thought Liliath was plotting something--
It only hurt her.
I never intended to betray her but it just happened. A misunderstanding-- caused by fear. Well.. partly. Then again, It could be said the same for Liliath, she misunderstood my prudence because of fear.
"Being careful and fearful are two different things.That siad, it's not like you can live a life devoid of fear-- there are times when you will undoubtedly feel fear. Fear of doubt, fear of death, fear of rejection, fear of the unknown.. the list goes on."
"Your point is?" I asked, a little taken aback.
"Take care of Liliath." he replied in a serious tone. "Her mental state is unstable, and since you're taking responsibility for her, I thought to remind you of something that may be holding you back from doing the right thing in the future. And don't be afraid to reach out of help if things go out of control. Especially when your life is at stake. Though, the chance of you actually being beaten black and blue by LIliath is shrimpishly small.. i'm guessing. TALENTS don't usually bite back, some do, I'm not sure which category your's is under."
Liliath's mental state is unstable-- an undeniable truth. Her twisted personality might just be the surface of all the pain she had locked inside of her.
Fear of death--
Fear of being manipulated--
Liliath is superior to me in almost every aspect-- be it strength, magic abilities and wits. She can very well toy with the entire world with her magic-- and I'm responsible for keeping her away from that path.
Well.. the only thing I beat Liliath in is the aspect of common sense.
I should probably invest in common sense but.. Liliath told me she preferred learning about this world from scratch. It was a lot more interesting that way. To experience something new every day.
It's more fun that way.
The sound of the bedsheets shuffling could be heard. Liliath opened the door-- dressed in her nightgown-- tonight, she looked even more beautiful than any other day.
Even more beautiful-- even more distant.
"Good night?" Liliath raised a puzzled voice at my silence. In her hand was a self-help book. She had been reading this sorta book a lot recently.
Seeing my gaze at the book in her hands--
"It's wonderful how various thought leaders encapsulate and distribute these insights to the people of the world. Knowledge is indeed power-- or so the quote says.. Noel?"
"Liliath. I need to tell you something.."
My voice tapered off.
"I believe it's something of importance... should the discussion be held inside my room or yours?"
"I think anywhere is fine."
Take a deep breath.. calm yourself down. This question will eventually have to come.. better do it now than later before the chance is gone.
Liliath went back into her room, shut the door and locked it.
There was a moment of silence. What's this?
"Are we going?" Liliath tapped my shoulder from behind. I flinched.
"Y-You scared me there.." I exhaled. Liliath probably used teleportation magic.
"If I don't practice magic my skills may become rusty you know?"
"Well.. I don't think you have to jump on me like that.."
"Noel has a strong heart so it should be alright.. isn't it?" Liliath's words implied an innuendo.
I had no words to retort.
We proceeded to my room where LIliath-- as usual, sat down on my bed.
"What is that you want to talk about," Liliath crossed her legs.
"H-how do you feel about me Liliath.. as a person.." hesitantly, I asked.
No matter how much I steeled myself for this moment-- this fear I'm feeling is inevitable. I can't run away from these feelings of mine. Push on, push through, fight, accept.
"As a person-- Noel is my saviour." Liliath said in a serious tone.
"Ah.. not in that sense.. let's phrase it in another way.. how do you feel about me.."
Heck. Are you dumb Noel? Liliath is already misunderstanding because you're beating around the bush, and here you are with another rhetorical question.
"Kind… Noel is kind.. and supportive.. I suppose?" Liliath tilted her head.
My hands were shaking, my throat unusually dry.
Just say it.. don't dodge. Say it straight.
"I love you."
There you go. My confession. I said it.. the weight is lifted-- but a new weight dawned upon me.. The weight of anticipation and the fear of the unknown-- fear of rejection.
Liliath's eyes shot open wide at my words.
I looked down to the floor.. my heart racing, head spinning. Rejection fills my mind.. a turmoil of negative thoughts-- the infinite spiral of..
I raised my head to look at Liliath.
She wiped a tear from her eyes, taking a breath.
"Oh, you've come Liliath, sit down please," Diana-sama, who was seated on the table beckoned. Two cups of tea had been prepared, it seemed Diana-sama had come to understand my tea preference.
"Thank you, may I ask what this is all about?"
It was a while ago when Diana-sama requested a 'heart-to-heart' talk. I came her exactly for that.
"Ahahah, i'll get straight to the point LIliath, how do you feel about Noel?" Diana-sama held a motherly smile.
Goosebumps formed on my skin.
"About Noel.." I looked down at the tea, shimmering under the warm light.
How do I feel about him? He's a vessel. My vessel.
He's also someone I'm painfully aware to be emotionally attached to..
"It's hard to put into words, however, I do find myself quite fond of him."
"Oh, what a princess-like answer. Alrighty, I won't dig into it too much. The next one is the more important one-- do you have any future plans?"
Plans for my future-- as an individual who is not of this world.
It would be wrong to say I didn't have one.. Only one.. the most important one.
One driven by the instincts of thyself-- thyself, a demon lord.
That however, brings about itself certain risks that.. I presume Diana-sama wouldn't be willing to hear, nor agree with this ambition of mine.
"I don't have any future plans as of the moment. At best, I plan to learn more before coming to a conjuncture-- perhaps that's my current plan."
"Good. Then I have a recommendation."
Diana-sama then took out a stack of books that she seemed to have planned to pass to me. Lowering it to the table, our tea created ripples.
"Maybe these can help. Liliath, you're the kind who likes reading right?"
I nodded, taking up one of the numerous books on the table-- I scanned the cover and contents. It was a genre similar to the one I borrowed from Noel, 'thinking fast, thinking slow'.
"Reading can help expand your views, perhaps you would learn something here you wouldn't otherwise can back in your world," Diana-sama had a motherly smile as she spoke.
"I will keep that in mind, thank you Diana."
"One more thing, take care of Noel alright?"
I nodded at her kind words of care.
What a nice family. I envy this fact about Noel.