3 Years Old – Q of Hearts
“You know… because of you, I got dumped by Makoto-kun. Mind not getting ahead of yourself?”
There, stood an emotional schoolgirl, spitting out abuse at me, and I, who was standing there dumbfounded.
A few other students who were walking past turned this way to see what was going on… But they probably realised it was something bothersome. Like that, they pretended nothing was going on and walked away.
Tsk… Cold bastards.
Right now I’m at school, standing at the landing of an emergency staircase, being cornered by a gyaru-type girl with flashy make-up from the class next door.
“I’m not used to this kind of love conflict, you know.”
Right now I’m at an overwhelming disadvantage of 1 vs 6, and have nowhere to escape to.
Because of the fake lashes and double-eyelid tape she was wearing, the eyes of the schoolgirl in question had swollen up to three times the size they were during the entrance ceremony. It’s super intense.
By the way, I’m not a gyaru.
I’m the neat and tidy type… at least I pretend to be, and I’m camouflaged as a fairly attractive school girl… but, inside I’m actually just an otaku girl with otome games as my hobby.
Otome games are romance games aimed towards females.
They’re games where the female protagonist, through various choices throughout the game, fall in love with various ikemen… Honestly, as long as I’m playing the part of a schoolgirl with a reasonably fulfilling life, it’s a hobby that I can’t tell anyone about.
That’s why I made up this character I play at school, the type that goes “I don’t play games or the like. I enjoy going with my friends to karaoke or shopping.” If I seem like a hikikomori girl, various things will become difficult as long as I’m going to school after all.
Comparatively speaking, I’m quite good with dealing with school.
I hide my true self as an otome game otaku, and even if I’m not part of the gyaru group that’s ranked high in the school, I’m part of a group that has more influence than average in my class.
I was maintaining a neutral position with the girls standing before my eyes, and was supposed to be on fairly good terms with them, and I was thinking that things were going quite well…
――――Up until today.
“It’s a misunderstanding, I said… I don’t know what you’re talking about. Even though I’ve almost never even spoken to this Makoto person…”
Honestly, why’d it turn into this…?
There’s too much I don’t understand, so I let out a sigh. There’s nothing more difficult to get through to than an emotional person who’s snapped.
She’s crying and lashing out in anger. I wonder if it’d be a good idea to let her know, “Your mascara and eyeliner are coming off, and you’re starting to look like a Jiangshi.”
This all began with that Makoto-kun or whatever’s remark.
Makoto-kun is a fairly popular, sporty boy in my class.
He was the boyfriend of the girl standing in front of me, but apparently, the other day he one-sidedly broke things off with her.
And he left some extremely bothersome words.
“I’ve, fallen in love with Aizawa-san…”
By the way, Aizawa is my name. It’s fine even if you don’t remember it though.
Because of those last words of his, right now I’m having a terrible time being magnificently cornered by these girls who have misunderstood.
Of course I don’t seduce other people’s boyfriends, and I don’t have any memory of being confessed to by him either.
On the contrary, I’ve hardly even spoken to him in class! I can say this for sure! I’m innocent!
But then why do I have to be criticised like this? It’s incredibly unreasonable.
Oi Makoto, explain things to them right this instant!
“Ahh, it’d be nice if I could just summon him with magic, huh…”
If I could, everything would turn out just fine! …My sense of reality would be pretty damaged though.
Meanwhile, the girl is still yelling on and on, with no sign of growing tired. Can’t you guys just leave already?
“Are you listening? Break up with Makoto-kun this instant! And don’t come near him again!”
It seems that she’s still continuing with her misunderstanding.
“Um, like I said, we’re not dating. I’ve never talked to him properly, so I really think this is some mistake.”
To begin with, it’s a mystery as to why my name came out of his mouth anyway.
Honestly, my contact with the Makoto-kun in question is limited to eye contact once in a while, and I really haven’t interacted with him at all.
Unfortunately my words weren’t reaching the frenzied girl.
In a fit of anger, the girl ended up shoving me. Her hands hit me perfectly in the stomach.
When I realised that things were bad, my body was already hanging in the air. As I stumbled backwards, I lost my footing on the stairs.
The girl who pushed me, widened her eyes in shock. Even if she was condemning me, she probably didn’t plan on pushing me down the stairs, huh…
I wonder if she’ll be arrested for assault.
Even though it was the instant I was falling down the stairs, the things before my eyes were moving extremely slowly…
Without sensing the danger of the situation, my mind stayed carefree and continued to think normally.
A shock hit my body.
However, it wasn’t as painful as I had prepared myself for.
Because I hit myself against something soft, things ended without pain.
What’s going on? There’s something fluffy under my back.
“Geez, Camille-sama. I’ve told you countless times that you can’t jump on the bed…”
“Who are you…?”
Before my eyes stood an obasan with a ‘full’ build wearing a maid outfit.
She’s probably in her fifties, huh… Honestly, I think it’s pushing it for her to cosplay a maid at that age. If my mother wore something like that, I’d hate it.
“Camille-sama! This is terrible! I thought it was some sort of joke, but have you truly lost your memories? That’s why I asked you time and time again not to do something so dangerous!”
An unknown room, furniture and world.
It seems I dived onto this bed I’ve never seen before. It’s a bed that looks somewhat high class.
I should have fallen from the emergency stairs in my school, but… Why? The surroundings have changed.
…In the first place, where is this? There are too many questions, so I’m sitting still here.
“Aahh! The master[/Danna-sama] will be here shortly, okay…!?”
The plump maid-outfit obasan paced around me nervously.
…This seems like something I’d see in a dream.
No, this is a dream. There’s no mistake. Or rather, please let it be a dream.
When there are people around more panicked than yourself, you calm down quite a bit.
Once I wake up from this dream, I’ll be on a bed in my house, or in the infirmary.
I mean, there’s no way any of this is possible.
The door suddenly opened, and a man I’ve never seen before quietly entered.
He’s wearing odd clothing, like a European noble from the middle ages. He might be one of the maid obasan’s cosplay buddies…
“Are you all right? Do you know who I am?”
His appearance looked a little cold, but he was young and handsome. His face is exactly my type.
He’s probably… a young adult, in the first half of his twenties, so there’s probably no problem with dating him. Were his head not pink, that is.
Whether a miniskirt-maid-obasan, or this pink haired man, nobody decent comes out in my dreams, huh.
That in itself might be proof that I’m an otaku.
I answered the pink man.
“I don’t… I mean, this is our first meeting, right?”
There’s definitely no way I’d forget such a high impact person.
The pink man held his head in his arms and squatted. The obasan hurried to his side in a panic.
“Are you all right? Marquis-sama!”
“There’s no way I’d be all right! For my daughter to have lost her memories… All I did was work and I neglected my daughter…”
The two of them stayed crouched like that for a while. …What on earth is going on?
My name is Camille Rhodolite.
I’m the eldest daughter of the Rhodolite Marquis family, and shockingly, I’m three! …Or so I was told.
Speaking of which, my arms and legs have been abnormally small, and my clothes are fluttery children’s clothing too.
Even though I’m a sketchy person, for something that came out in my dream, the craftmanship of this clothing sure is detailed, huh…
At any rate, both Camille and Rhodolite are names I’ve heard somewhere before. As for just where I’ve heard them, I can’t remember at all.
“And I am your father, Charles Rhodolite.”
“I am the head maid of this residence, Aimée Afriat!”
What I understand from all this is that the maid obasan is a very energetic person.
It seems that this is the residence of Marquis Rhodolite, in other words, the residence of the pink headed man declaring himself as my father.
Because his wife passed away when Camille was born, it’s a motherless family.
“I showed her to the doctor too, but it seems that besides the loss in memory, she’s very healthy… It’d be nice if by some chance she remembered everything, but…”
I think that might be impossible. I had no memories of living as Camille to begin with, after all.
“Right now is rest time, Camille-sama. Please sleep on the bed.”
Then I’ll do so without reserve. And after that, everything will be back to normal once I wake up.
Ahh, but wow. That sure was a dream with impact.
For the dream to be continuing even after I wake up… When I woke up the next day, I was still in that room.
I woke up on the bed I mentioned earlier, and I got up and was about to check the surroundings when the door opened before I could.
“Ahh, Camille-sama. Have you memories not returned?”
“…It looks like it.”
My body remains that of a three year old, and my surroundings are still a place I don’t know. It might just be because I’m little, but I feel like this house is really big.
Did I fall into a coma because of the shock in the fall, and that’s why I can’t wake up from this dream?
I still have my life to live after I wake up, so if possible I hope this ends with just a minor injury.
“Well, can’t be helped.”
Even if I struggle about, it’s not like I’ll be able to wake up from the dream. Last night before I went to sleep, I tried kicking and squirming so I can declare this with proof. That! Which is impossible, remaaaains impossible.
I’ve decided to enjoy this dream. I mean, I finally became something as interesting as the young daughter of a rich marquis family after all.
I’m a person who’s good at going with the flow.
“The pink-… I mean, where is father[/Otousama]?”
When I looked in the mirror yesterday, I found to my shock that, like my pink father, I had the same hair colour as well.
I can no longer ignore my own shortcomings and continue calling him the pink man.
“Marquis-sama is currently doing his job.”
“…What is father[/Otousama]’s job?”
“The Marquis-sama is a high ranking magician at the castle. Each day he maintains the safety of the country.”
I don’t really get it, but it sounds like a pretty amazing job! I’m slightly re-examining my views of pink dad.
And there’s magic in this world? How cool!
“Magic? How nice. I wanna do it too!”
When I was little, I admired a certain film’s wizard protagonist.
It was my dream to go to a school of witchcraft and wizardry, but even when I entered high school, I didn’t get an invitation from the magic school in question.
Since there was no other choice, I entered a public school in the neighbourhood. I just lived by camouflaging and dealing with my surroundings, but I’m aware that I’m actually a pretty embarassing girl.
But it’s fine, this is a dream after all. Let me do as I please!
“…Hahh, once Marquis-sama returns, let us discuss it with him… But honestly, Camille-sama, you sure have changed, haven’t you…?”
There a rumour going around Aimée and the other servants that since I hit my head yesterday, I’ve become smarter. Inside I’m a high school girl, so that’s a given. I’m being praised a lot just because I stopped jumping on the bed.
I’m a three year old child, so there should be leeway for a little change in personality like this.
More importantly, it’s my dream, so there’s no problem! Everything’s fine!
But just when am I going to be able to wake up?
Aahh, there were heaps of things I still needed to do, though!
I still haven’t cleared the otome game I stealthily bought two weeks ago!
Because I knew how to deal with high school life, I’ve been living while concealing the truth that I’m an otome game otaku.
∴(therefore), I basically never game outside of the room in my house. I can’t take out my games to play on the train or at school, so the time I have to play is necessarily limited to the time I have after I’m back from school, and I’m not making much progress at all.
Not only that, to maintain my decent grades I spend half the time at home studying.
It’s because all of my playthroughs have been done with the help of walkthrough sites in order to save time, following the guidance of my predecessors, that I’ve been able to maintain my gaming life.
The game I mentioned a little earlier that I’ve been playing recently is also one that I’ve been playing sporadically since it came out, and I’ve been progressing while reading the walkthroughs.
Mn… Hang on… This world is…
This place is, kinda, pretty similar to the world of that otome game, huh.
Mn, right. There was a pink person called Camille Rhodolite.
For the game to even appear in my dreams… I really do have some lingering attachments to it, huh. As expected of me.
『Carte à Jouer』 (←It means trump in French)
This was the title of the last otome game I played, and it was a game set in a world similar to this one.
In a magic academy where the four factions, Hearts, Diamonds, Clovers and Spades vied for power, a commoner heroine had romances with ikemen in the school, and it was a game about rising status in the world.
The love interests were the top members of the four great powers that went to the same school as the protagonist.
The men were nicknamed K(King), and the protagonist would eventually fall in love with a K from one of the four powers.
They were amongst the elite, and were people who had the best grades and highest social positions. As expected of an otome game. The love interests are all high spec.
The person whose form I’m currently taking, Camille Rhodolite, was one of the rivals who got in the protagonist’s way, and was the antagonist that appeared during one of the romance events with the capture target from the Hearts faction (K of Hearts).
Four rival characters appear for each of the four powers.
By the way, amongst the players, the four rivals are known as the ‘Evil Four Heavenly Kings’.
Camille’s role was that of the heart faction’s rival, and is popularly known as the Q(Queen) of Hearts.
Q is a term that refers to the various rival girls.
The Q of Hearts was a selfish, can’t-take-a-hint burikko type rival character, and after she appeared during the K of Hearts route, she was an unmanageable person who would follow the K of Hearts around, and get in the way of the heroine’s romance at every turn.
Of course, each faction’s Q would get in the way of the romance with their faction’s king, but amongst them Camille was a particularly infuriating woman. She was like a figure that personified all the annoying parts of a woman’s stubbornness, combined.
I was a fan of the King of Hearts, so I found her extremely irritating.
Well, she was a villain so in the end she was destroyed socially, and I felt really refreshed though.
…Wai-…Right now I’m Camille, aren’t I?
But the thought that I’ll be ruined at this rate doesn’t come to mind.
∵(Because) this is a dream.
There’s no way, way~, that I’ll fall into ruin~♪
Since I’ve come all the way to a country with magic, I’ll do what I want! I’ve come all the way to a dream where I don’t have to worry about how others see me, after all.
I wonder if the magic of this country has a game where you chase around a golden ball with wings. I’d be really, really be interested in playing it.
“Are you all right? Marquis-sama!” ← I’m aware that it sounds a little awkward, but didn’t tl ‘-sama’ as ‘lord’ since I prefer to reserve that for 卿. Please bear with it.
Aimée Afriat (eh-mehh ah-free-ah)