If only it were Eryn’s normal, crimson eyes, then I might have believed her. But the irises staring right at me glowed purple like she cautiously studied my every move, the same thing I did before I struck. I moved to push her away, but then, another pair of arms latched onto me.
Saki had moved behind me, blocking my escape. The girl was now in a French maid outfit, complete with the mini-apron and hat to complement her fluffy black and white dress. She was the very picture of a trendy servant that was ready with the ‘Goshujin-sama’ speak. If the situation had been different, I would have enjoyed it.
“I see you’ve been cozying up to her during my absence,” Eryn teased. “You subconsciously avoided Katalina, given her position and how it would look for her to be close to the Grim Reaper. But poor little Saki, she could sympathize with your pain and loss. Someone who could see eye to eye with how you felt. Someone familiar with the tinted gazes of scrutiny.”
“Oh, but it is, Claude. You fell for her, if only just a little bit. But your faithfulness got in the way. I suppose that is something worth applauding. Even in death, you couldn’t let me go. I’m flattered, really.”
Eryn looked at me with a thin smile, her eyes scanning my response to decide what action to take next. I could only look on with anxiety as the two girls had me pinned in between them. What could I even do? Now that I knew that Saki was being held hostage, that dashed any hopes of escaping.
‘How did she get possessed in the first place?’
There was too much that I didn’t know. But likely, the mind control that the previous Chancellor had over her was never truly broken.
“Claude, I really was not joking when I said, ‘anything you wish for’.” Eryn snapped her fingers, and then, Saki’s head nuzzled against my neck. Shivers went down my back as I felt tiny kisses and nibbles against the skin.
“W-What are you making her do?! You know she’s not into me!”
“Oh? Are you really sure about that? All I did was a little bit of suggestion, like giving her a round of the hard stuff to loosen one’s lips. One simple lock unfastened to drive away her worries. A freedom to act without having to question what others think or how society views her….”
Eryn’s hand went over to brush against Saki’s face, to which she responded by purring against it. Then, Eryn reached forward, slipping right by me and giving Saki a gentle kiss on the lips. All the while, I mouthed like a goldfish out of water as Saki responded warmly to the gesture.
Seeing Saki’s fondest desire being played out before me, I felt a heat upon my cheeks. I tried to urge my eyes away, but they refused to budge. There was no way I could escape from the yuri scene before me.
Seeing my confusion, Eryn smirked before turning back toward me.
“What are you doing just staring? You have permission to join in.”
That triggered an instant battle between instincts and reason. I knew that this was all a trap, but damn, did Eryn know exactly how to mess with me.
‘Putting Saki in a maid outfit… that’s playing foul! Sandwiching me between them was a second strike!’
But, I could still manage to keep my wits. Fortunately, Eryn had never caught wind of my other interests. If Saki had put on ‘nekomimi’ and gone ‘Nya Nya’ in addition to everything, surely my reasoning would have struck out.
“Hmm? Not satisfied with just the two of us? Shall I go and capture the darling Queen as well? Would that complete your paradise?”
“No, that’s not-”
“Ah, or maybe, there are others that you are secretly pining for? Your eyes certainly lit up when talking with Lady Kaguya. And while I may be imagining it, you are fairly doting on Ludmila…”
“Hold it right there! What the hell are you planning?!”
My sudden rejection didn’t seem to faze Eryn at all. She simply explained like it was a matter of time before it would happen.
“This is our paradise now. It wouldn’t do to have lingering attachments to the outside world when we take it over. You’ll be a Demon Lord like the fantasy stories that you’ve told me about, with everything you could want under your control.”
As if my jaw could drop any further, the nonchalant way in which Eryn proposed taking over the world sent me into shock. Now, I definitely knew that it was not her talking, but the Demon itself. But one thing didn’t make any sense to me.
“Why, why are you doing this now? And why are you letting me choose?” I asked her.
With what I had seen so far, the combined might of her demon army would have been enough to cause quite a bit of havoc. And with Saki on her side and me locked up, there was no reason for this roundabout manner of doing things.
“Why don’t you just claim the world for yourself?” This was the one point I didn’t get.
Eryn shot me a pained expression, one that I totally was not expecting.
“Even if I were to claim the world for myself, who would I share it with? What point would it be to love you as a controlled puppet and be the only one capable of command? Don’t you recall the Mad Empress’s feelings? The path of a conqueror is a lonely one. Few people will ever reach where you stand. That is why, with the love that I have for you inside of me, I wish to give you everything you desire. In hopes that you will be the one to walk that same path as I do.”
Eryn reached over and drew me into a kiss. Despite the cold lips against me, I could feel a fiery passion behind them. A desire – not to be alone, not to be abandoned.
I didn’t resist. But those bittersweet feelings brought tears to my eyes. Perhaps, the part of Eryn that I loved truly had been assimilated with the Demon. If it was all an act, then I was being deceived. The tears of frustration continued to roll down my cheeks, proof that my resolve was wavering.
And then, those lips parted from mine. Slowly, Eryn drew back and stepped away, her own face flushed despite the paleness of her skin. That was the first time that I forgot that she was the Demon, the cuteness of the expression blowing me away.
“Let’s go. It seems like you need some more convincing of my intentions,” Eryn said, gesturing to Saki who had not moved. But with that command, she pulled my arm along as she walked forward.
Out of the lounge and up the stairs, we ended up back in the room that I woke up in. I didn’t like the signs of where this was going. I especially didn’t like it when Saki discarded her mini-apron and started unbuttoning the front.
I moved for the door but slammed right into a clothesline attack, sending me hurling into the bed. Clutching my head in pain, the fierceness of Saki simply bringing her arm right into my noggin caused my ears to ring. Her ridiculous Attack stat was to blame.
Before I could regain my bearings, the weight of a person shifted the bed, and soon, that body was right on top of me. Long tresses of black hair dangled from above as I peeked out between my fingers.
I removed my hands, seeing Saki perched on top like I was her prey. Only, her eyes showed no sign of intent. Rather, it was Eryn by the door that had commanded her to do as such.
“What the hell are you making her do?! You know she doesn’t want this! She’s not into guys!”
But Eryn simply laughed. “Once again with the assumptions. Then, how about this?”
With a snap of her fingers, Saki’s body shook like she had broken out of a trance. Her eyes darted back toward me, this time full of surprise. It only took moments to understand her current position of mounting me with her clothes partially unbuttoned. And when she did, her face flushed bright pink.
“Y-You’re back, Saki?”
But her answer came in the form of her right hand, reaching between the folds of my night robe and crawling up my torso. I looked at her in shock, but her expression was the same as mine.
“I-It’s not me! I’m not in control!”
“A-Are you r-really not?!”
The Saki I knew wouldn’t come close to feeling up a guy. Not to mention how flustered she was acting. It had to be some kind of trick. While I was struggling against Saki’s attempts to dig into my clothes, Eryn simply giggled.
“So this is how you act, when your inhibitions are completely removed…”
“What the hell do you mean… by that, Eryn?! There is no way… that Saki is moving… freely right now!” I said in between the scuffling. Meanwhile, Saki’s face looked like she had overheated, leaving her body to move on autopilot.
“Oh, but she is. I merely used my mind control of her to release the part of the mind that causes hesitation. This is, in fact, her true self. A curious, naughty girl, free from the burdens that have caused her so much pain and sorrow. Free to love whoever she wants without the fear of backlash and rejection.”
“Then, Saki, you like… me?” The only response I got was her eyes looking off to the side, almost shamefully.
“It was her fear of men, the tragic events of her past, that has caused her to pull back from every moment. But because of that, because of how perverted her affections are seen even in this world, she has rejected love. She has become so starved for it that she doesn’t even realize how much it breaks her. It only took a little taste from me to whet her appetite and bring all that desire spewing forth.”
“B-But why… are you doing… this?! Isn’t it… me you’re after?!”
“It is. But it doesn’t look like you will believe what I say. The identity of the Demon within me is too strong in your mind. So instead, Saki here will convince you. That a world without all these pointless limitations is best. These unfair rules placed upon us by the Gods and onto the world itself – they mean nothing if we grasp fate for ourselves. And why not let someone you trust be the first to submit to this new world of your making?”
Eryn walked over and stroked Saki’s back. A purr escaped her lips like a cat enjoying her master’s touch.
“Let your desires be fulfilled. Worry not as there is no one here to judge you. And then, come back to me when you want something more. When you realize that what you truly wish for has always been right beside you. I’ll be waiting.”
With that, Eryn walked away, leaving the two of us to continue our scuffle in bed. The very sight of it made it look like she would break out in cackles at any moment. Anticipation for when I would cave in must have tasted sweet on her lips, because she was grinning like a satisfied child.
“The world is waiting for its new ruler, Claude. You can’t fight against it, not while you’re here. Not while I have my eyes on you.”
With a click, the door to the room closed. And I was left with Saki in a mad rage. Only, it was not the frenzy that I ever expected. Nothing at all when we literally smashed each other into the ground with our fists.
This time, the madness wasn’t driven by despair, but by lust for another. And all that was on my mind was whether to stop it somehow or to give in and let nature run its course.
Regardless of what I did, there was no going back. My relationship with Saki Himejima would never be the same going forward.