“Just a version you don’t know. And then you claim to be my lover.”
⟦You fucking idiot!⟧
⟦This man is so dead.⟧
Hmm? What do they mean? I only spoke the truth.
If you love someone, then you have to be accepting of all their sides, even if there are some which you are not fond of. After all, love isn’t just a feeling, it’s a commitment-
“You dare!” Phiria appeared in front of me and grabbed my collar.
Oh, I see, they meant this.
Wait, she grabbed my collar? I’m shirtless right now though.
Ah, she grabbed my throat, but looks like this body is too strong for me to feel anything. But to think that she actually tried to choke me.
Jesus Christ, just how insecure does she have to be to react like this? I haven’t even started yet.
⟦Have you ever been in love before?⟧ Simone asked.
⟦Then shut the fuck up.⟧
But look, doesn’t it make sense? If you love someone, then you should have confidence-
⟦Shut. The. Fuck. Up. Is that so hard to do?⟧
Alright, alright, what a spoilsport. Sheesh.
Anyway, let’s handle the woman in front of me first; we can deal with the woman inside me later.
That actually sounds so weird, now that I think about it. What am I, a woman handler?
Okay, I made it even worse. Let’s just move on.
“Bruh, why are you so serious? I was just joking.”
Stop being such a baby about it.
I can actually feel them becoming speechless from my shamelessness, and I must say that it’s a nice experience.
“Don’t you dare joke about my love!” There was a hellfire burning behind her eyes, threatening to consume me if I didn’t fix my mistake.
Oh god (or should I say, ‘Oh Phiria’?), this is bad.
My bad habit is coming out.
I find this… highly amusing.
“Don’t you think your reaction is a bit too extreme?”
“I hate it when someone questions my love.” I could almost hear her gnashing her teeth.
Well, that’s a natural response, I suppose. Anyone would hate it if you doubted their feelings.
But would their reaction be so extreme?
“Even if the one questioning it is the person you love?”
“HA!” She scoffed. “Don’t get me wrong, bitch.” She brought her lips closer to my ears. “I have absolutely no love for you. You aren’t even 1 percent the man the real Samuel Hayden was.”
“But I am he.”
“The delusions of grandeur of a madman.” She rolled her eyes.
“Hmm, I don’t think you understand how the concept of memories work. The Samuel Hayden you love is based upon me.”
“Yeah, right.” She snorted, but for the briefest of moments, her eyes shook.
Huh, I really like this body. In my original one, I would have never noticed such a small distortion in her expression.
“Think about it for a moment. I’m the one who came out after Ex-Sam lost his memories, which means I’m the man who’ll go on to become the real Samuel Hayden.”
“…” On her face emerged the slightest of frowns.
“So it all boils down to this; the Sam you love would not exist if not for me.”
“You…” She scowled, this time openly.
“And the very fact that you cannot love me even though you claim to love Samuel Hayden is… hmm, how should I say this? Preposterous? It means your love is-”
⟦Stop.⟧ Maxwell’s commanding voice resonated inside me. ⟦I’m warning you, do not go any further.⟧
⟦Oh my, threatening me, are you?⟧
⟦Well, consider me very threatened.⟧
“- well, it actually means nothing. Love has different forms, after all.” I finished the sentence that Maxwell had stopped me from speaking.
⟦Eh?⟧ Simone stupidly grunted.
“…For a moment, I thought you were going to say that my love was flimsy.” Phiria’s eyes narrowed, but her grip on my throat didn’t loosen.
I was going to, but then I decided against it.
“And on what ground would I say that? I’m someone who has never loved anyone before.” I shrugged. “That aside, would you mind releasing me?”
I mean, her squeezing my throat is kind of hot in some ways, but I’m unfortunately not into masochism.
⟦Really? I thought you’d be into it, given your death seeking actions just now.⟧ Simone scoffed.
⟦Nah, I already checked.⟧
Is there a problem?
“Sure. But I would like you to remember one thing.” She brought herself closer to me once again, enough for our breaths to mix into each other’s.
This switching between conversations is getting a bit tiring, to be honest. But that’s the life of an isekai protagonist, I guess.
“And that would be?”
“Never, ever, question my love again, or there will be consequences.”
“Are you really going to hurt me? Even though I’m in the body of your beloved Samuel Hayden?”
“Believe me when I say this, but the amount of pain I’d put you through would be enough to make you beg for death, but it would be nothing more than an itch for the real Sam. Besides, I know he’ll forgive me.”
“Quite the generous man he was.”
Wow, this woman is really feisty. And you know what they say about feisty women?
They don’t, because they’re too afraid to say anything.
“I shall keep that in mind.” I smiled.
“Good.” She released me and went back to her place.
Her demeanour reverted back to her previous one as well.
“Anyway, as I was saying, the body is in pristine condition.”
So now she’s treating me as a parasite that’s leeching off this body. This is just wow.
My upcoming time is going to be wild, isn’t it?
“I see.” I nodded.
“For now, I’ll tell the others that you’ve lost your memories.”
Wut? I don’t think that’s the most tactical decision.
“Hold on. Let’s not do that.”
“Why not? Let me tell you beforehand that I have no interest in indulging you in your inane games.”
Wow, it has only been a few minutes and she already knows me so well.
“Not that. I’m telling you to hold onto this information for now because we don’t know if there’s anyone who will try to make use of the situation to their advantage.”
The Administrator of this Universe has just lost his memories; I can already imagine the power-hungry wankers of this Universe drooling at that information and rushing to my side to get into my good books or to manipulate me.
“I’m only going to tell a few of the girls-”
“Can you be absolutely sure that none of them would misuse this information?”
“You cannot, right?”
“…” She scowled at me.
This means that there is someone she’s wary of, someone who’d try to use the current me for their own gain.
“Then what do you propose?” Phiria asked.
“It’s simple. With Maxwell’s help, I’ll try to keep this charade going for as long as I can.”
“And you think you can pull it off?”
“In case you don’t know, lying happens to be one of my specialties.”
I’ve been acting since the moment of my birth; fooling a bunch of lasses shouldn’t be that hard.
“Right. You are Sam, even if only an extremely small part of him.” She snorted.
“Looks like your Sam was also adept at the art of lying.”
I mean, he did manage to fool her into thinking that he didn’t love her.
Which shouldn’t be that hard, now that I think about it, given how emotional Phiria tends to be.
Hmm, which also makes her easier to manipulate, especially if the one manipulating is Ex-Sam.
Oh wait, what if that was the reason he continued to keep Phiria by his side without revealing to her his love? Since she was madly in love with him, feigning disinterest in her would have kept her chasing after him, thus making it easier to use her.
And considering that she’s a Goddess, I can only imagine how useful she would have been for him.
If that was indeed the case, I must say that Ex-Sam was a fucking piece of shit, but boy was he efficient.
“Hey Sam.” Just then, the door of the room opened and someone barged in. “I-”
It was a young girl with brown hair and brown eyes, who stopped speaking the moment she saw us. She first looked at me, then at Phiria, and then back at me.
Then she turned around.
⟦And she is?⟧
⟦She’s Sherry Miller. One of your best friends that you hold dear.⟧
Time to prove my lying skills.