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3 Akiyo

 Ai took a deep breath and walked towards the garden as Akiyo accompanied her in silence. Once she had calmed her nerves down, she turned to look at the younger brother of the man she vowed to avoid.

Akiyo has long silky black hair that was tied up in loose ponytail. His face was expressionless but his eyes were gentle and kind, unlike the cold intense pair of eyes of his brother's.

In her previous life, Akiyo was the only one who stood by her side at Omaru household. Whenever she felt alone and deserted, he was there to comfort her.

She had once asked the kind-hearted Akiyo why he was so kind to an evil woman like her. The young man only shook his head with a gentle smile as he muttered softly, "Maybe one day you will find out, Ai."

"Thank you, Akiyo" Ai said in appreciation, forgetting for a minute that they were yet to acquainted that well in this life. Ai grew red at her slip-up and quickly fumbled to apologise.

"I-I means Young Master Omaru!" she stuttered.

Akiyo quietly chuckled at the blushing young girl. She seemed to be about the same age as him or a few years younger, yet she possessed such an alluring beauty that could rival the most experienced of courtesans.

Akiyo shook his head.

"It's okay, you can call me Akiyo... Ai...", he replied slowly, testing out her name on his tongue.

If he was being completely honest, he would say that he actually loved how casually she had addressed him. It sounds exquisite coming from her and somehow he wondered if it would sound more tempting during a passionate love-making. Akiyo quickly shook away his wayward thoughts mentally.

Akiyo brought his attention back to gaze at the beauty that caught his attention. Usually, between the two brothers, women flocked to his brother like bees to honey. And yet, Ai, she had a mortified looks on her face that screamed she absolutely wanted nothing to do with his brother. This sparked his interest so bad that he decided that he must get to know her, by hook or by crook.

"You must be wondering why I'm so afraid of your brother," Ai muttered. She had a distant look on her face that clenched Akiyo's heart badly.

Akiyo almost wanted to stop her from mentioning what pained her, until she continued detachedly, "Do you believe in reincarnation?"

Unsure where this was going, Akiyo nodded and replied, "To some extent, yes."

Akiyo listened silently as Ai recounted her previous life: from the day she met his brother to the fateful day she died.

For some unknown reasons, Akiyo believed her story without a doubt. After all, why would she lie? Why would she run away from his brother?

Perhaps to gain Akiyo's sympathy?

But if that's the case, Akiyo doesn't mind.

In fact, he would be very delighted to be informed of that.

Even if Ai was as evil as she said her previous life was, Akiyo would have given her his heart. Willingly.

From what Ai described, the previous Akiyo was in love with her too. Though Ai doesn't seem to realise as she was blinded by the love for his brother. Somehow that thought pained him so badly and he immediately wanted to compromise her virtue so that she may never run away from him.

Akiyo forced his heart to hold back the beast that was screaming to get out. Yet he secretly made a vow, in this lifetime, Akiyo will make Ai his and his only. Be it she wants or not.

He will personally make sure his brother can no longer hurt Ai, even if he has to eliminate his blood sibling or any other threats along the way.

Unbeknownst to them, a young man with a blonde exotic hair had been listening to them in silence. His mind was in a dilemma as he was torn between righteousness and loyalty.

By righteousness, he should not inform his young master of what had transpired since the young lady had a valid reason for staying away from his master. He believed the young lady was telling the truth and his mind agreed that the two should not be together if that's the case.

But he had sworn a blood oath to his young master and it's his duty to inform what had happened. But his heart was torn. As much as it was his first time meeting the young miss Shizuka, he had a yearning towards her that he had never experienced before.

Kit Koyozoki quickly shook away this hopeless notion of romance. After all, even his own family had abandoned him and there is no way in hell he could stand next to such highly-accomplished Miss. Or so he thought...