If You Get Caught in the Villain’s Snare - Chapter 1 – A Fateful Encounter
Chapter 1 – A Fateful Encounter
I couldn’t breathe.
The surging rain drummed on my whole body. The more I tried to run forward, the more my legs felt stiff.
I have to run away.
That very thought paralyzed my rationality but forced my body to move.
The voice of the man approaching me could be heard not too far away.
He was relaxed—the opposite of me, who was running away desperately. The man rode a horse and moved towards me without rushing. His arrogance in catching me anytime made me hold my breath.
‘Why are you chasing me?’
As my legs struggled to keep moving, I painstakingly wracked my mind. No matter how many times I thought about it, it didn’t make sense.
‘You’re my father, but why?’
It was my stepfather, Count Blan, who was the pursuer.
And it was me, who he was trying to catch.
Just why. Why the hell was he still chasing after me after six years?
I did my best to escape from him.
I set fire to the mansion, estranged his shallow son from him.
I was never confident enough to think that I wouldn’t be caught.
Ever since the day I set the mansion on fire and ran away, I’d been plagued with nightmares and anxieties that continued for years.
And I never forgot my family in those six years.
During that period, I thought that my family members, including my stepfather, wouldn’t look for me.
It wasn’t a long enough time to forget a person, but still, my family looked for me. No, those perpetrators and bystanders shouldn’t be called family.
‘I didn’t ask you to like it anyway.’
The muddled voice echoed through my ears as if I were underwater. It was the voice of the man who I used and threw away. Dale Blan.
He was the superficial son of Count Blan, the cowardly bystander who once helped me.
‘Get on my back.’
It kept ringing in my ears, this voice that was almost like an auditory hallucination.
Maybe it was because of guilt.
I took advantage of him and threw him away, and I felt no regrets for doing so. However, I couldn’t help but worry about his safety right this second, now that my stepfather had found me.
‘If I get caught, it’s over.’
Yet, it was just a moment.
The most important thing right now was my own safety.
Ecyl Blan, my stepfather, must have come after me with a purpose.
He was the kind of person who’d use even his children as tools, but he never acted personally when it came to these things. What’s more, there’s no way he was mad enough to come get me himself.
He’s here in person, so there must be a reason why he needed to catch me.
‘It’s my ability…’
I told my family that I could see the future. It was a foolish declaration that was a double-edged sword. It was something that raised my position for a little bit, but then, I was soon thrown into the pits of hell.
Because the future might change, I couldn’t say anything.
‘No. Don’t get caught.’
I ran forward desperately, as if I was possessed, and as I tripped over a jagged stone and my knees got scratched and bruised, I picked myself up and ran again.
My breath—the panic was strangling me.
And because of the rain, I couldn’t see anything in front of me.
Just as I was about to pass through an alley, a hand jutted out suddenly and wrapped around my waist.
Helplessly, I was dragged away.
My mouth was covered, and a foreign scent pierced through my senses.
It was a cool and strong scent.
It wasn’t Dale.
Then who was it? Peran?
A black coat filled my vision, so I couldn’t tell who it was.
I raised my head, but somehow all I could see was a pair of lips that had on a pleasant smile.
“Ugh…! Let go…! Get off!”
I bit the hand that was over my mouth and struggled with all my might. I didn’t know who it was, but I was sure it was a man I never met before.
I pushed the barrel of my revolver against the man’s jugular. But in return, the man who was at gunpoint just burst into a low laugh.
“Easy there… Shh.”
The man’s face drew closer to mine all of a sudden, and because it felt like he was about to kiss me, I froze.
“You’re being chased, huh?”
The hushed whisper was sweet, contrary to the situation.
I pushed his chest as hard as I could, and he let out a suppressed groan.
I forgot to shoot.
And I tried to run away, it was all for naught because I was caught again.
“Come on. You’ll hurt yourself…”
His hand drew near once again, and my shoulders tensed up reflexively as I flinched away.
But the hand, which had grazed my cheek, soon tucked in a lock of hair behind my ear.
A smooth leather glove caressed my cheek. But right after, the man clasped the front of my shirt and pulled it up. To my surprise, I grabbed his wrist, but he didn’t stop.
It happened in an instant, and at a blink of an eye, my clothes were pulled down with my shoulders exposed.
Heavy, cold raindrops were beating down on those shoulders.
All I wanted was to run away, but I even met a pervert!
Trying to suppress the urge to slit his throat right away, I bit my lips and jabbed my gun harder on his throat.
It was a warning. He better stop.
“I’ll help you.”
The man ignored my warning and traced a fingertip over my bare shoulder.
Six years ago, when I ran away from my father, I was shot.
Cautiously, the man had touched the scars that did not fade, and a pleasant voice and a ticklish breath reached my ears.
“Promise me you’ll be quiet.”
The man held a finger up to his lips.
“If you do, I’ll let go of you.”
Instead of resisting further, I nodded slowly. Defying him wouldn’t be the right move now.
The hand finally let go. At that moment, I asked.
“You. You suddenly popped out of nowhere, and now, just what…”
His hand had let go of me, but I still wasn’t free from him. The arm wrapped around my waist was still there.
This man’s incomprehensible behavior baffled me. As I tried to take a closer look at him, he suddenly snatched my hat off and placed a robe over me.
Cold rain continued to pour down over my head. The robe filled with unfamiliar scents wrapped around me and mixed with the rain.
“What are you doing?”
My words were pointed.
And once again, instead of answering me, the man reached out. The drops that beat down on the black leather gloves fell down.
I stared at the hand in bewilderment.
“Hold my hand. You’re hurt.”
“Aren’t you in a bit of trouble right now?”
“How can I trust an obviously suspicious man?”
How could I believe someone who showed up out of the blue and took off my clothes?!
Was he someone my father hired?
At that moment, I followed the man’s gaze as he looked at the entrance of the alley, and we saw someone pass through. It was my stepfather, Ecyl Blan, who galloped by with his horse.
I could see him straining his neck to look around for me as I evaded his pursuit.
He might see me.
I tucked my head in a hurry.
Not long after, I could hear my father’s voice and the sound of his footsteps nearing the alley.
My heart was pounding out of my chest.
It also felt like I was delirious with a fever because of the anxiety gnawing at me.
“I’ll help you. Now, take my hand.”
The man’s voice was low, but even.
Both paths were blocked.
In front of me was the stepfather who strangled and tormented me.
And behind me was the man I didn’t know who claimed that he wanted to help me.
I had no choice.
“Hey. Come out for a second.”
But as I heard my father draw closer when I hesitated to take the mysterious man’s hand, he blocked me from my father’s sight as if he were protecting me.
At that moment, I grabbed the man’s hand frantically.
Then, his red lips curved beautifully in that dark alleyway, as if he were basking in the sunlight.
* * *
I was a normal, run-of-the-mill person before I got transmigrated into a book. It happened after I read it.
I hadn’t the slightest clue why I read it, or how I came in possession of the book.
However, what was certain was that I died in an accident after reading a book that I couldn’t even remember the title of.
And I had no idea why I got reincarnated here.
It didn’t make sense. It wasn’t supposed to be possible. But eventually, I came to accept that nonsense. I had no choice but to do so.
And the situation I found myself in after I transmigrated was the worst.
‘I can see the future.’
She was a side character who would die after being exploited by other greedy extras.
And because I was now her, I couldn’t afford to waste any time by denying my new reality.
Rina Blan, the owner of this body I possessed, had been set to be engaged with the First Imperial Prince.
But then, Rina made a mistake when she first met the First Prince—she had accidentally spilt tea over him.
It was a mistake that could have been overlooked, but the First Prince had tripped her, and in the end, there came the rumors of breaking up marriage talks between them.
Rina’s stepfather, who had been pushing for this marriage, was livid. He confined Rina in a small room under the pretext of probation, and starving her became a daily routine.
When I woke up as Rina, I tried to grasp my situation, but I felt my stomach cramping in on itself because of hunger.
I thought long and hard. How could I change the future and avoid dying miserably?
‘I have precognitive dreams. At first, I thought they were just coincidences when my dreams appeared in reality, but eventually… I realized it wasn’t just that.’
The only weapon I held in this strange world was my knowledge of the book’s contents.
I tried to survive by using the original narrative. However, that plan failed spectacularly.
Wasn’t it obvious that my father was chasing after me because he was desperate to take advantage of me?
“Hey. Come out for a second.”
The familiar voice drove away all my thoughts.
My father’s voice was right in front of me.
My heart was beating furiously.
I was out of my father’s sight because the man’s body was completely blocking me from him, and as he continued to do so, my father kept calling out to me, saying he was wrong and that I should come back.
“Even just a minute. Let me see you.”
It was an obvious lie. He wouldn’t let me go.
“Are you good at running?”
The calm question contradicted the situation, making me doubt if we were really in a dire state.
I wasn’t bad at running. But right now was a bad time.
I shook my head in case my voice would be heard.
“Ah. What should I do?”
The man murmured as if he was in trouble.
I just kept looking at his hand.
I wondered what the man was thinking. I was so panicked and I wanted to see his face, but I didn’t dare to look up.
What if my father saw my face when I raise my head?
With one finger, the man lifted my chin as if to wash away my worries.
It was only then that the face hidden in the darkness could be seen properly.
His amber eyes were fixed on my own eyes. His beauty rendered me speechless.
“May I kiss you?”