Read at Watashi wa Sugoi Desu!
Chapter 0: Prologue
This man’s strength was overwhelming.
“Weak. You’ve become so feeble and out of touch. What a bore, Leorino.”
“You brute! Hmph, mmrph!”
By twisting and turning his wrists, he should have been able to release himself from being restrained even though he had yet to practice the technique with his current body. He knew from past experience that it was a relatively easy task. However, being held by a man so much stronger than him caused Leorino’s hands to be in extreme pain and numbness that he could barely even move himself, let alone his wrists. The strain made his eyes sting.
Just as he was about to lose consciousness, the other man released him, pulling his arms up over his head and intertwining them together. He then tethered Leorino to the bed. With the man’s palms being twice as big as his own, Leorino was left with no more means to resist.
To him, all of Leorino’s struggles must have been perceived as nothing more than child’s play. He shifted his body to transfer his weight, but Leorino remained completely immobile, held down with just one arm restricting his movements.
The pain in his wrists intensified, so did the numbness, as blood gradually began to refill his numb fingertips after being released from the man’s restraint. Now, it wasn’t only his arms, but his whole body that ached. Leorino shuddered feverishly from being put under so much stress. Being pressed against the bed by a body so much larger than his own, Leorino could no longer tell which part of himself he was able to move.
The corners of his eyes teared up in frustration. This body’s so weak.
“Was I too rough? I could hardly tell…” The man muttered under his breath.
Leorino then felt the man’s lips gently touch the damp edges of his cheeks. As if trying to soothe him, the man’s thin lips kissed away the tears that spilled in small droplets, and Leorino was left staring at the man hovering on top of him with his shimmering violet eyes, glazed over with a light film of moisture.
“Don’t cry, Leorino… Did it hurt? I’m sorry.”
“I’d rather you let go of me than hear your apologies…”
Soon after he said that, Leorino felt the man’s lips press against his tears once more, removing each one as he momentarily passed over Leorino’s trembling eyelids. This soothing gesture made Leorino’s face heat up in acute distress. This was not the kind of relationship we had!
“Ve—Your Highness Gravis, please let go of me! Oww! Ouch! Your Highness!”
Leorino raised his voice in protest and turned his head away, avoiding the warm caresses of the man’s lips; his fair throat was then bitten in retaliation.
The fright was too excruciating for this innocent body that had never once known violence. The man above him licked the wound he had inflicted on Leorino, who was trembling from experiencing such intense pain and crudity, almost as though he was trying to soothe the other.
“Fool—I’ve finally caught you. What makes you think I’d let go of you again?”
Unsure whether it was because of the pain from the wound itself or the warmth from the tongue licking over it, Leorino failed to hold back his sobs.
“It’s not ‘Your Highness’, you dolt! You should’ve called me like you always did in the past.”
Even though the man was cruelly pinning him down and manhandling him as roughly as he pleased, he still gently traced along Leorino’s cheek with his fingertips, just as one would handle a delicate and fragile thing. His light touches felt so hot against Leorino’s skin, searching earnestly and caressing his nerves directly, as though bidding his body to reach its boiling point.
Leorino felt uneasy. This man had never touched him like that before. Back then, he was a little rougher, like the way one would interact with a friend.
“Leorino… Call me like you did back then.” As the man’s tongue lapped over Leorino’s ear, the words he whispered with hot breath sent an overwhelming tingling sensation racing down the back of Leorino’s neck.
His body was much more sturdy and well-trained than what Leorino remembered. But even when they were just young men, Leorino had always seen this man as someone who dazzled with brilliance from the day they were born. And now, that man had acquired an even greater sense of superiority over the span of a decade. This man now seemed like a completely different person, nothing like the man he had been in the past. If anything, he still had those same strong, masculine good looks and a slightly raspy voice just like before.
But still, I am different now, too.
Leorino was not the same boy who had been this man’s best friend when they were younger.
“I, uhh—! I have no idea what you’re talking about, Your Highness!”
The man hugged Leorino’s slender body, which was too weak to even resist, closer to his chest. As Leorino’s arms slid around the man’s shoulders, he felt himself shudder in response.
“Leorino. No… not that… should I call you ‘Io’ instead?”
It was the first time in a long time that Leorino had heard himself be addressed by that name; it made him feel as if his heart was being crushed. Leorino’s eyes widened as he stared back at the man. He had wavy black hair and indigo eyes splashed with bright golden streaks that made them resemble the starry night sky.
I see, we’re finally meeting for real…
A nostalgic scent, a familiar face, a confusing longing he had been feeling, a man who was able to see “Ionia” again after eighteen long years, and a last memory that was stained with blood… Nevertheless, this man was an old friend whom “Leorino” had once been in contact with as they had matured in the past.
“I’ve missed you for such a long, long time…”
Me too. I’ve missed you too, Vee…
But with a body like this, there is no way I would be able to fight alongside you anymore. No matter how much I wish to go back to that time, I just can’t.