Side Story: A Look into Lyuu’s Mind
Editor(s): Speedphoenix, Joker
Lyuu slowly sat up, raised a hand to her mouth and yawned. She followed the action with the usual big stretch before pushing herself out of bed.
It was early in the morning. The sun, which had only just risen, shone its reddish orange rays through a gap in the curtain. As the dungeon’s resident morning person, the warwolf was the only one that woke up so early. Even Leila was still sound asleep in the bed next to hers.
Imagining the scene that would eventually come about when the sheep-horned demon roused was one that led Lyuu to giggle. Leila always seemed perfect. It seemed like she could quite literally do anything without letting her smile fade. But even she had her weaknesses. Waking up was one of them. The transition was rough, and would often lead the demon to sit up and blankly stare at a wall as her head gradually spun itself up to its usual speed. As far as Lyuu was aware, her slow start and the pure innocence of the expression that decorated her face while she was still asleep, were the only two chinks in her otherwise perfect armour.
Upon changing from her PJs to her usual uniform she left her shared personal quarters and entered the common space, the living room to which it was directly connected.
There, she found the man to which she was engaged. It didn’t look like he had much of a good night’s rest. Neither he nor the dragon girl whose head was buried in his stomach had managed to make their way to their beds before falling sound asleep in the middle of the room. His sleeping posture was a total wreck, his expression was one of clear discomfort, his limbs were sprawled all over, and he was only half covered by a small thin blanket. His whole get up was so entertaining that she had to stifle her laughter as to not accidentally wake him up.
She made note of the board game beside them as she stepped over it. The pieces were still scattered all over. None had been placed back in the box, which meant the two had likely played and argued late into the night, as usual.
“At this rate, I ain’t thinkin’ these two’ll ever be fixin’ their sleep habits…” She smiled as she kneeled down beside her soon to be spouse and gently ran her fingers through his hair. For a moment, she basked in comfort and joy. But in the next, she was assaulted by a sudden, towering wave of anxiety.
The source was the girl sleeping beside him. She was so beautiful that Lyuu felt no qualms describing her as divine. The exact same descriptor could also be applied to her might. She was capable of defending him from any and all danger with the snap of a finger.
Likewise, his other wife, who had just recently left for work, was also extremely beautiful. She was able to handle any task thrown her way, and had the modest, reserved, and refined temperament and behaviour that men often desired from members of the opposite gender.
Lyuu, on the other hand, felt like she had little to no merit. She wasn’t as pretty as either of the other two, and her figure wasn’t even worth mentioning. She lacked the womanly shape that most desired, and her chest was more imaginary than noteworthy. Her clumsiness didn’t help; she was effectively incapable of doing housework and failed even as a playmate given the dragon’s presence. The only two advantages she had over the others were her ears and tail—a number she promptly narrowed down to one upon realizing that a tail was a feature she shared with Lefi.
She failed to understand why, but Yuki seemed to like physical racial traits. He would often try to touch her ears and her tail, so she made sure to put extra effort into keeping herself well groomed. But now that she realized how far behind the other two she was, she made a mental note to put even more effort into her grooming, and to ask Leila for tips.
There was no doubt in her mind that Yuki was capable of magically producing the perfect item for her to ensure that her ears and tail were always as silky as they could possibly be, but she was reluctant to ask him. A woman’s efforts weren’t meant to be exposed to the man that she was trying to impress. She had no intention of ever letting him find out that she was trying her best to make him like her more. That would be far too embarrassing.
“I ain’t never thought that I woulda been thankful I was born a warwolf for a reason like this…” she said.
“A reason like what?” he replied.
“Uhya!?” Lyuu nearly jumped out of her skin. “W-were you awake this whole time, Master?”
“Nnnmmm… nope.” His eyes were half closed, and he had yet to actually sit up. “I just woke up.”
“Sorry. It was prolly my fault. I didn’t mean to be wakin’ you.”
“Well, time for you to make up for it then.”
He grinned as he grabbed her hand and pulled her under the sheets.
“W-wha!?” She squeaked. “U-uhm… Master…?”
“You’re so warm and soft… You’d make a great bed…”
“I-I ain’t a bed, Master…”
Being cradled by him caused her face to flush. Though her anxiety had yet to leave her, the comfort of his body warmed her heart and gave her just enough strength to voice her concerns.
“Uhm… Master, can I ask you somethin’?”
“Sure, ask away.”
“Do you think that I’m worthy of bein’ one of your wives?”
“Huh? Where’d that come from?” He blinked a few times in surprise.
“I… I-I can’t protect you the way Lefi can, ‘n Nell’s more ideal as a woman.” After opening and closing her mouth a few times, she eventually stuttered out a slow, anxious response. “I ain’t even real good at doin’ the chores like Leila is. I ain’t as pretty as everyone else either. So I was thinkin’ that I’ve always stuck out like a bit of a sore thumb…” Each word was accompanied by a loss of spirit. She was practically in tears by the time she finished. “I ain’t wife material at all, am I…?”
He spent a moment or two in silence to put his words together, then replied in his usual tone.
“I mean, sure. You’re not very strong, you’re kind of clumsy, and frankly, you’re a terrible maid.”
“Erk…” She got even gloomier.
Because she’d misunderstood the point that he intended to make once he was done having his fun.
“But it doesn’t matter,” he said, gently.
“It does… It matters lots…”
“Nope. It doesn’t. You’re not Lefi, Nell, or Leila. You’re you.” He squeezed her hand. “Everyone’s different. We’ve all got our strengths and weaknesses.”
“But I ain’t got any strengths! It’s just my ears, ‘n that’s it!”
“Your ears are nice, but they’re not the only thing.”
“Then what else do you like ‘bout me?”
She looked straight into his eyes. And he looked right back. He didn’t flinch, avert his gaze, or joke around.
“First of all, I really like how you don’t mind doing everything you can to make everyone else laugh, even if it’s at your own expense. Being around you is fun, and you being here makes everything a lot more cheerful.”
She showed a mix of emotions. On one hand, her face turned beet red, as if she was too embarrassed to hear more. But on the other, her ears perked up and begged for praise.
“That’s my favorite part of your personality, but it’s not the only thing I like about you. I also really like the sound of your voice, the way you smell, and the way you laugh. I would prefer if you could be a bit better at helping around the house, but at the same time, I don’t really care. I don’t mind if you never get any better at it. I’m happy enough with you just the way you are.”
“Oh and you really don’t need to worry about how you look. You’re plenty pretty. Keep humbling yourself and people’ll start getting annoyed enough to roll their eyes every time you say it.”
“Really. You’re beautiful, Lyuu. I’ve never once thought that you weren’t. And speaking of undeserving and worthiness and all that… Honestly, I think I’m the one that’s most undeserving here. Having not one or two, but three perfect wives is making me pretty anxious if anything.” He smiled a bit sarcastically “Anyway, those are my thoughts. I hope they’re enough to cheer you up.”
“If that’s how you really feel, then I’m plenty satisfied.” She leaned into his chest. “You’re makin’ me a real happy gal, Master.”
“Good. Still feeling anxious at all? Or is the imposter syndrome still biting at you?”
“Not anymore.” She squeezed his hand. “Thanks Master. I love you.”
“Alright. Now that that’s sorted, I’m going to sleep a bit more,” He smiled softly as he played with her hair. “Care to join me?”
“Sure! I’d be glad to.”
Only once the two were fast asleep did a third voice enter the conversation.
“If they wish to whisper sweet nothings to one another, then I would very much prefer they do it when they are alone…” groaned Lefi, wearily. “I would much rather not have to listen to it…”