NERO smiled when he woke up inside a dark, unfamiliar room.
Standing in front of him was a white shadow-y beast in the form of a wolf with two tails. It must be his Soul Beast.
"Hi, there," Nero greeted the white wolf. "Will you lend me your power, Mr. Wolf"
"I know that Soul Beasts like me exist to serve a de Moonasterio like you," the Soul Beast said in a metallic voice. "But I don't feel like following an order from a brat."
He didn't expect that it would be easy to control a Soul Beast.
[But Neoma is special, of course. She's very cute so obviously, not even a Soul Beast can resist her charm. My precious sister is really the best.]
"Well, I have flash news for you, Mr. Wolf," Nero said with a smile. "I don't take "no" for an answer."
NEOMA was worried about Nero.
Her twin brother was now lying on the bed, unconscious but his now red eyes were opened. According to Alphen, it was a sign of his awakening.
[So, this is how I looked when I awakened, huh]
Alphen and the maids gave Nero a sponge bath and changed his clothes into pajamas. Then, they left her to sleep. They asked them to look after him.
[According to Alphen, it was Nero's order to leave him in my care.]
It felt good that her twin brother trusted her now.
"Good night, Nero," Neoma said to her twin brother. Then, she laid on her side and put her hand on his tummy. She gently tapped his stomach while humming a lullaby. "Come back safely, baby brother."
Well, technically, Nero was older by a few minutes.
But her mental age was old enough for her to act like his mother. She may be acting cute to suck up to him and survive. But at the end of the day, they were still siblings. And she didn't have a reason to hate him in this lifetime. In short, she was genuine with her intention to get along with her twin brother this time.
[I won't let you become a psycho, Nero.]
She intended to stay awake until Nero woke up.
But unfortunately for Neoma, she still had a body of a child. She failed to fight her drowsiness and soon, everything went black.
NEOMA woke up when she felt strange coldness in the room.
She got up and opened her eyes to check on Nero. Much to her shock, she saw a man clad in black standing on Nero's side of the bed. And the intruder was pointing a dagger at her twin brother's heart.
Neoma gasped aloud. "No!"
Not that the assailant would listen to her.
Instead, the masked man stabbed Nero in the heart.
It seemed like the dagger was also laced with magic. She saw the blade turn into fine black dust, then entered Nero's mouth. Right after that, her twin brother coughed with blood.
That snapped her back to reality.
"Guards!" Neoma screamed at the top of her lungs. "We're being attacked!"
The way the assassin calmly turned to her told her that he was confident no one would be coming to save them. That only meant one thing.
[The knights are dead.]
When the assassin walked towards her with a new dagger in his hand, she immediately stood up on the bed and punched the dagger using her little fist.
Thanks to her awakening, her body was now sturdier than a normal child's.
The assassin looked shocked when the blade broke into two because of her punch.
[God, that hurts!]
She was cut a little but she didn't have time to dwell on the pain. As soon as the assassin threw the dagger's holder, he moved to attack her with his fist.
As if she would let him hit her.
Once again, she used her super strong fist and gutted the assassin. She heard his ribs broke when her tiny fist connected at his side. Before he could recover, she jumped and kicked him in the face. She poured her strength in that kick so no wonder she sent the assailant flying until he hit the wall.
[Gosh, I'm like a superhero.]
Neoma turned to Nero. He was already awake but he obviously looked like in pain. His chest area was also bleeding profusely. "Nero, let's go," she said, then she helped him get up. "I know you're in pain but we need to run first."
Nero nodded, then his gaze went past her. His eyes widened in fear. "Neoma!"
She turned behind her and when she saw the assassin who was about to stab them, she covered Nero with her body and closed her eyes tight.
[Is this my end]
But a few seconds passed and she didn't feel any pain yet.
"Your Royal Highness!"
Neoma quickly opened her eyes. She saw Alphen and Stephanie running in their direction. When she turned to the assassin, she noticed the white-ish light wrapped around his body like a rope.
Considering that Alphen's right hand was glowing, she could only conclude that the head butler saved them in time.
She turned to Stephanie who came to their side in a hurry. The head maid was holding a dagger as if she intended to fight. But when she turned to Nero, she looked shocked when she saw the blood in the prince's chest.
"Stephanie, carry Nero," Neoma said in urgency. "He'll be fine. He just awakened."
Stephanie nodded and immediately carried Nero in her arms.
"Neoma," Nero said worriedly.
"I can run, Brother," she assured her twin brother, then she jumped off the bed and ran with Stephanie.
Alphen stayed in the room to capture the assassin.
The hallway was filled with dead knights and maids that the assassin definitely killed before getting into their chamber.
Neoma's "ace" in that lifetime was the memories of her past.
[But this didn't happen in my first life!]
NEOMA was hiding in the treasure room with Stephanie and Nero.
They failed to leave the palace because one of the knights in his last moments told them that the assassin wasn't alone. Plus, moving around wasn't good for Nero. They had to find a hiding place first to give her twin brother first aid.
So right now, Stephanie was doing her best to stop the bleeding from Nero's chest by pressing clothes in his wound. The prince looked really weak and was barely awake. She had a feeling that the dust that entered his body a while ago was wrecking his insides.
[We need a Healing Sage!]
But first, they needed to get out of there.
Neoma kept on pressing the gem in the brooch that Stephanie gave her when they got in the treasure room. According to the head maid, it was an emergency device designed to contact the emperor's palace. She had already sent a signal before so she assured them that the royal knights from her father's palace would come and save her.
[They're f*cking late!]
"This is bad, Your Royal Highness," Stephanie said with a terrified look on her face. "The royal prince's wound won't stop bleeding. We need to get him to a Healing Sage or else…"
The head maid didn't need to finish her sentence.
Judging by Nero's pale face, she knew that her twin brother wouldn't make it if they just waited in there to be saved by the backup knights.
[I need to save my baby brother.]
Funny, wasn't it
Nero killed her in her past life. She should have held her grudge longer so she wouldn't feel this way. But how could she hate a little boy who showered her nothing but love He might be a little off. But in this lifetime, he loved her genuinely.
She knew what she had to do.
Neoma grabbed the dagger attached to Stephanie's hip.
The head maid gave her a questioning look. As a response, she held her hair in one hand. Then, she used the dagger to cut her hair until it was as short as Nero's. God, she loved her long hair so much that it hurt to cut it that carelessly.
But she needed to do that for their survival.
"Stephanie, take off Nero's clothes," Neoma ordered the head maid. Then, she took off her nightgown until she was only in her underwear. "I'll switch with him."
AFTER Neoma wore Nero's clothes, she silently and carefully exited the treasure room.
When she was sure that no one saw her come out from that chamber, she ran away from it as fast as she could. To be honest, she didn't know where the exit was even though this was her second time living in Luna Palace.
In her defense, the hallways were unusually dark. Plus, she wasn't really paying attention to her surroundings because she didn't want to look at the dead bodies lined up in the corridor. God, the assassins murdered everyone they saw in the palace!
"There you are."
Neoma was forced to stop running when a masked man blocked her way. She tried to run to the other side but another assassin appeared. Now she was trapped in the dark hallway where two assailants blocking her possible exits.
Now she had no choice but to fight.
[Hey, Soul Beast! Shouldn't you help me during times like this!]
But then again, before she left the Soul Beast, it told her that it would go on a "hibernation" to change from being a dragon into being a unicorn that she requested. That meant that her stubborn Soul Beast was asleep inside her.
[God, why did I ask it to be a unicorn again!]
As soon as she asked that to herself, Emperor Nikolai's smiling face entered her mind.
[Ah, that's why.]
In her past life, she made the emperor smile once.
It happened when her father asked her what she wanted for her last birthday in the palace. During that time, she was about to leave her residence to be adopted by Duke Quinzel. She was too shocked when the emperor asked her what she wanted for the first time. So she blurted out what came to her mind first: a unicorn.
Emperor Nikolai smiled faintly and told her that it was too "childish" for a twelve-year-old girl. She was embarrassed so she took it back and said she wanted pretty clothes and shoes instead. But at that moment, she knew that she already received the best birthday gift that she could ever ask for.
And that was to see her father smile for her.
Neoma suddenly felt emotional. "God, I'm about to die again," she whispered while shaking her head. "If only I could see him smile once last time…"
"Kill him," the assassin behind her said. "Kill the royal prince!"
She knew that she couldn't win a fight against two adults but she didn't want to die easily. Despite everything, she still went on a fighting stance and hoped that her punches would do digits on the assassins.
[Here goes nothing!]
She used her arms to cover her face from the attack that she would receive.
But all of a sudden, the heads of the assassins fell off the ground. Their bodies, without the heads, still continued to run towards her. But she managed to get away from them until her back hit the wall behind.
She gulped while watching blood spurt from the headless neck.
"For a girl, you're smart and brave."
Neoma looked up at the owner of the cold voice.
It was indeed Emperor Nikolai. Based on the bloody sword that he was holding in his right hand, it was obvious that he was the one who saved her.
[Heh. He saved me]
"You're not as useless as I thought you'd be," Emperor Nikolai said. With just one shake of his sword, the blood in the blade magically vanished. Then, he put the sword back in the sheath attached to his hip. "Neoma de Moonasterio, the first princess of Moonasterion Empire. From now on, you'll live as Prince Nero's proxy."
[The hell is this psycho saying]
Neoma, despite her confusion, still smiled at the emperor. "Father, what do you mean by that"
"From now on, Nero would be targeted by assassins sent by my enemies," the emperor explained. "Until he's strong enough to protect himself, you'll pose as your twin brother."
Her smile froze but she still acted innocent. "But Father. If I take my brother's position, then wouldn't the assassins mistake me for him and…"
She stopped talking when she realized that was exactly what the emperor wanted her to do.
The source of this content is n/ov/elb/in[./]net'
[This sc*mbag wants me to be a bait!]
"You're no longer a princess, Neoma de Moonasterio. From now on, you'll live as Prince Nero de Moonasterio," Emperor Nikolai said coldly while looking down at her with glowing red eyes. "Try to survive until your twin brother comes back to take his rightful place, understood"
Neoma was too shocked to react.
[Are you f*cking kidding me, you sc*mbag!]
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