Chapter 7

Deep red rose coloured eyes burned into Alexis making her jump back in a fright. Her whole body had been cushioned by his highness who she thought she saw on the second floor.

"You crazy fool!" He shouted and grabbed her by the shoulders. "You could've died! Do you have any idea of how stupid-!" His words caught in his throat as an expression of surprise overtook his anger. 

Alexis had already felt the warmth around her eyes, just as she had felt the shaking of her whole body. Her teeth chattered in shock.

“W-why are you?-" he started to ask, but seemed to not know what exactly to say.

Tears slipped down Alexis' face making the once fierce man a flustered mess. Her face flushed as if she had a fever and Alastair could feel her trembling.

"I'm so sorry!" She wailed, still awkwardly perched on the emperor.

"H-hey! this is no situation to cry-" the King fumbled with his words and soon with a sigh he started patting her back. Hoping she might take comfort in his awkward consoling. 

He himself was unfamiliar with humans, much less women at that, except that they seemed to throw themselves at him after a single conversation. And yes they did cry. 

A lot.

Because of that, he avoided them more so than men. 

So why was this one any different? She cried like any other woman, yet somehow, it unsettled Alastair more than normal. It made him panic and not know what to do. 

'Well she was the only answer to my weakness.' Writing it off as such he pulled her off himself and placed her on the grass. Her small trembling body resulted in him being extra careful. It was a strange feeling for him, to be gentle with someone human. Normally, he would avoid any sort of physical contact with them.

Soon her crying ended with small sniffles and he gave her his handkerchief before any snot entered his vision. 

"Sorry." She apologised, her brown eyes now red, "it’s just, I didn't want to die again in another world, even if it isn't real!" Her tears once again started flowing, but her words struck the Emperor as odd.

"What do you mean by dying again and what makes you think this world isn't real?" He questioned, offended at her words, but then regretted asking as more tears spilt from the girls eyes.

'Why did I ask?!'

"I died and this world is just an illusion my brain made right before my brain bleeds out completely. I almost died in this stupid dream as well!" Alexi hadn't realised the pent up emotions in her, until they burst open in front of the dream character she despised the most.

"A dream? How dare you assume I'm a dream and not real!" The Emperor was now, once again, his ordinary angry self.

"That's exactly what a dream character would say!" Alexis sobbed out.

"No! Listen here dirt, I saw you place your leg out that window and fall on your ground in your bedroom. You’re not dead. You’re very much alive." His angry voice hushed quickly as he realised that maybe being harsh wouldn’t calm down the hysterical girl.

“Alexis, look at me. You’re alive. I ripped past the fabric between our worlds because I heard that beyond it was someone who could help me. And that person is you. It might be hard to believe, but you’re alive and you'll truly realise that when you help me and I get you back safely and no one will realise that you even left." The girl that once cried in a ugly manner was calm now and stared at the gorgeous man who consoled her with a new found perspective. 

"Thank you”. Her eyes gazed at him through eyes that sparkled with tears.

"Now care to tell me why you were sliding down the stairs like a feral child let loose?" He asked as if to lighten up the girl, but that couldn't be it. He knew it couldn't.

Alexis chuckled much to his delight.

'No not delight! What's the matter with my head?'

And despite his inner turmoil he continued to wait for a befitting answer.

"I-I'm looking into what you said about fixing people's perception of you, but from what Emilia and the dwarfs said I don't think there's anything to fix." Alexis felt lighter now. It was just like her to ignore things that secretly scared her, and in this case, the idea of dying had weighed on her more than she expected. 

At least she could go back.

'In a year...'

She frowned and then remembered about what would happen if she broke the contract. Goosebumps travelled up her arm, she could blow up...

Her emotions changed as fast as the Emperors, who now looked bitter and back to his original personality.

"Humans." He spoke.

"Hm?" Alexis who had been broken away from her own turmoil stared at the Emperor.

"I have a bad reputation with humans." He turned around, "I'll leave Agathus with you so don't travel too far. He'll notify me if you accidentally blow up." He cruelly laughed as he left.

Alexis' heart froze. 

She felt a bit baffled at the change of behaviour in the once nice Emperor. She had even begun to think he might not be nearly as bad as she had made him out to be. But, all that had just come crashing. 

'I'll just stay a year. I should be able to live that long..." her thoughts were also unconvincing as she gulped. 

Agathus appeared next to her with a welcoming smile. 

“Where did you?”- 

“From the stairs. I’ve been called to show you around”, Agathus said, he had bags under his eyes despite his hospital behaviour.

“Oh”. 

She glanced back at the stairs with an uncomfortable expression. 

‘Never again’.

"Let's go Miss Magician" he said snapping her away from her quiet shock.

She nodded absently back and set off through the flower gardens.

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