It has been a couple of hours since I woke up in this place. I um… checked myself. I am certain this is not my old body. This place, it is like a completely different world. No, it is a different world. My old body. Was it no longer alive? Is this some sort of reincarnation? Well, even so, that does not explain why this person would look so much like my old self. Especially the eyes. They are exactly the same as before. Ah but, there is this one difference.

I raised my fingers and lightly touched the right side of my face. I could feel the gash under my eye. The way this person had attained this injury… it must have been an incredibly close call.

The girl from earlier is named Alice and she is my personal maid (though I had to sneak around to find this information). And from the way she easily tamed my messy long hair, I imagine she has been doing this for me or- him for a long time.

Since that awakening, I have had breakfast with a man called Count Alistair. Based on the seating arrangement, it seems I am the second eldest in this family. I look nothing like the rest, but because a boy named Maximus has been referring to me as ”big bro ” this entire time, I have unwittingly assumed the role of a brother.

Currently, I am sitting next to the eldest as she tells me which papers are mine. I think this is some work that the count dumped on us before his meeting with the city council.

”Devon. ” My eye suddenly caught a name written atop one of the papers. Without thinking, I grabbed the paper the girl was holding. ”Devon Alistair. ” Is that my name?

”What are you doing? ”

A white flash. I no longer had the paper in my hands.

”Whats with you today Kallius? ” she said exasperated.

Oh. So, my name is Kallius. So that must mean…

”Nothing Devon. Just a bit tired- ow! ”

Before I could show off my detective skills, she had slapped the back of my head with her fan.

”Ouch… ”

”Did that hurt? Good. ”

With a prompt flick of the wrist, she opened her fan and started writing with her free hand. I hurriedly gathered my papers and pretended I was doing the same. I stole a glance at our little brother. He had tossed aside his documents and was reading the newspaper. I was about to tell him off but peeked at Devon. She did not seem to care, so I withdrew and started with my portion of the paperwork.

”Hey guys! Check this out. ”

I looked up again. Max was pointing at an article in the newspaper. Intrigued, I half got up when Devon grabbed my shoulder and forced me back down.

”Ignore him Kallius. Focus on finishing these documents, ” she said without raising her head.

Max stood up and walked in front of the main window, blocking the light. He looked pleased as he had now commanded the attention of both me and Devon. I noticed Devon was starting to go red in the ears. I can recognize the face of an angry elder sister from a mile away. Wanting to avoid another smack from her fan, I quickly gestured to Max to sit back down.

”Please not now Maximus, ” I said in desperation.

But it was too late. Devon had already lunged out of her chair. I had never laid eyes on such a spectacle before. Max, who had let out a glass shattering shrill, ducked and avoided the fatal blow of Devons fan. Unfortunately for me though, he had picked me out as his scapegoat and had hidden behind my being. Papers were flying everywhere. Devons platinum blonde locks had become even more bushy than normal. She had not said a word, but her glinting eyes gave me the message loud and clear.

Not wanting to die twice in one day, I tore away the newspaper Max had been raving about from his hands. He hung from my neck and peeked down at the newspaper.

”See? Isn this great news? ” he giggled. ”Emperor Rosenshein has passed! Dad said Lilan exports to the Rose empire will increase by ten-fold with the new deal with the crown prince! ”

”Is that all? ” said Devon in a disappointed tone. ”I knew about that weeks ago. If you were not such an idiot, you would have noticed that exports have already begun to increase. That is actually what fathers meeting today is about. ”

”Oh yeah?! Well, if you weren so stuck up, maybe I wouldn have needed to figure it out myself- ”

Their bickering drowned into the background. The fire. That novel. This body. This world. It all made sense now. Two years. It has been two years since the beginning of that despairing story. I was in the world of ”Forgotten Love. ”

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