Ichika was already 19, but she was still a fan of these childish magical girl anime. It was a bit embarrassing, but in the end, she really loved the genre. Her favourite series right now was called ‘Beauty Flower Magic!!’.
As the name would imply, the characters all had flower based powers. The main character, Chibana Sakura, represented pink cherry blossoms. Her companions were Hinata and Airu, sunflower and hydrangea respectively.
Sakura was, for Ichika, the main charm point of the series. She was the typical cute and energetic girl, but there was more depth to her than that.
At school, she was often bullied, but she stayed strong for the sake of her little sister and her friends. Hinata often tried to stand up for her, but she always refused, not wanting her to get dragged into it herself.
This kind of topic was not that often dealt with by main characters, especially not over the course of the whole series. Of course, everyone hoped for the point where the villains would realise they were in the wrong and beg the protagonist for forgiveness. This happy and kind protagonist would then smile and forgive them, and send kids around the world a positive message.
Well, that’s what everyone was expecting at least. What actually happened was like this: the bully turned out to be one of the minor villains (well, everyone saw that one coming, their hair styles were the same after all), but instead of asking to be forgiven, she riled the protagonist up, taunting Sakura until she attacked. For some reason, she didn’t dodge this attack and was gravely wounded. Sakura looked on, horrified, as this minor villain used her own life to summon the major villain… and so ended the first season.
Of course, this caused a huge uproar amongst the fans. Everywhere on the internet you could see comments like “what kind of bullshit is this!?” and “I thought this was a children’s show!!”.
Ichika was especially surprised. She’d been looking forward to this redemption for one big reason: the villain shared her first name.
But instead, they killed her off, they even showed her soul’s flower, an anemone, wilting, making clear there was no chance for her to return.
“Ah, god damn it,” Ichika sighed. After getting up early to watch the finale, they pulled this crap. Oh well, she’d be looking forward to the next season anyway, this kind of ending wasn’t too unexpected considering the bullying theme was already quite dark.
Thinking that, she got up to go get breakfast. In her excitement, she’d completely forgotten to eat.
However, as she stood up from the couch, her foot slipped on the rug, and she landed with her head on the floor.
It hurt. A lot. She couldn’t muster the strength to get up, a dull pain in the back of her head kept throbbing. As she lay there, everything went dark before her eyes.
She dreamt of darkness, pure darkness. She was floating around inside the black, nothing else in sight.
Suddenly, she heard a voice.
She groaned, and opened her eyes.
Huh. This was strange. She was lying on a bed in a strange room. Did she get brought to the hospital?
But, everything there was so purple. This couldn’t be a hospital bed, it was more like the room of some little girl who loved purple so much she’d begged her parents to decorate her room exclusively in that colour.
Next to the bed sat a young woman. She looked to be about 17, and was wearing what seemed to be an impeccable cosplay of Tsukiyo, another villain from Beauty Flower Magic.
This was a strange situation to say the least.
“Oh my, so you finally came to,” she said. “That girl beat you up pretty badly.” Her tone was pitying, but she didn’t look particularly sad, and even chuckled a bit after.
Then it clicked for Ichika. This was the scene at the end of episode 2, in which Tsukiyo reprimands the villain Ichika, who had just been beaten by Sakura in the episode before.
Did this mean she had become Ishiguro Ichika, the villain in her favourite magical girl series!?
In any case, it seemed best to play along for now… what were Ichika’s lines again??
Well, maybe it was best to stay quiet until Tsukiyo left, so she could confirm the situation, and come up with a plan.
Luckily, Tsukiyo wasn’t paying much attention, and hadn’t even noticed the flickering facial expressions of Ichika, who’d always been pretty bad at hiding her emotions. Instead, she blabbered on. Whenever there was a pause, Ichika would just nod and hope it was the right thing to do.
After what felt like an eternity, Tsukiyo finally got up.
“Well, I really ought to go now. Be sure not to fail like this next time!”
With that, she left.
As soon as her footsteps had disappeared, Ichika got up. She opened the closet, and found it had a mirror in the door.
Seemed like she was right: she really had become the villain character.
Well, the best thing to do would be to play along, right?
But, she didn’t want to die! Even if it would get her back to her old world, dying was too scary!!
She needed to think of a plan as soon as possible.
Well, today was Friday, in the evening. School, and with that any kind of interaction with important characters, was 2 days away.
The next important even would be on Tuesday, she remembered. In that episode she would curse a boy whose parents were going through a divorce.
Well, she’d figure that out when the time came. She couldn’t just betray the villains, after all, they’d go out of their way to take revenge.
No, she had to get a real redemption arc, like the one she’d hoped for for this character. A redemption arc guaranteed her the protection of the protagonist.
With that, she made up her mind. In front of the protagonist, while acting despicable, she’d sneakily show off her good side. She’d show that she was someone worth saving deep down!
And then, in the final fight, she’d just give up and tell Sakura she’d changed her ways! This plan was perfect!
If only she could act…
Well, that was a different matter. She’d figure that out along the way as well! Fake it till you make it, if she tried long and hard enough, of course she’d become like the original Ichika.
For now, sleep was most important. It was good to rest, and she needed to recover from the wounds gained in the last battle.
Of course, with her flower’s magic, it wasn’t very hard to heal up, but it was still good to be careful and rest well.
The next day, she immediately found herself hindered by a new challenge, one she hadn’t even thought of: the original Ichika always braided her white hair in an intricate style!
Ichika had short hair in her original world, and thus had no experience braiding since she was 10 or so.
She spent the first few hours of the day looking up tutorials, and in the end managed to make a decent braid. Ah, she should definitely practice more, and get up early on school days…
Looking trough her phone contacts, she really didn’t have many friends. How could someone like her bully the protagonist?
Of course, she had many followers, who praised her for her beauty, but most of them were likely just after her for her money. Her parents had died when she was young, and left her a great inheritance. She now lived on her own, using the money to go to school. It was probably enough for her to never have to work again though.
The only person in her contacts who could be considered a friend was Tsukiyo, but based on that conversation earlier, she really looked down on Ichika and considered her a rival.
This villain was somehow really pitiful now that she was living her life.
The rest of the day she spent doing homework. As she had been 19 before transmigrating, she already knew all the things that the 16 year old villain learned. Still, she had a good reputation with the teachers, she should keep that up.
On Sunday, she looked up how to braid her hair once more, and managed to get it done on a reasonable time that day. The rest of the day, she spent watching anime. She really couldn’t shake that habit from the former world, and since this world had anime as well, she might as well enjoy them.
When Ichika went to sleep that night, she couldn’t help but worry.
Would she really be able to play the role of the villain? Would she have to sacrifice herself again, or would the other villains notice her betrayal?
That Monday, she went to school looking quite tired. Everyone was whispering about it, it surely reached the ears of even the protagonist.
And so, while Ichika had wanted to do her best to avoid facing her, Sakura timidly tried to get a look at her.
While Ichika was Sakura’s biggest tormentor, Sakura was naturally a very curious person. As such, she really wanted to see what everyone was talking about.
What she saw was really a pitiful appearance.
The Ichika who always bullied her was half asleep during break, drooling on the bench. Somehow, it was kind of cute… Sakura felt that there was something she wanted to do to this person, but she wasn’t quite sure what.
As she stood there looking at the other, Ichika opened her eyes in confusion. Seeing it was Sakura, she was startled.
“Ah, uh, Sakura-”
Sakura felt this situation wasn’t too good, so she left quickly, not wanting for Ichika to get mad at her as usual.
As she turned around and left, Ichika couldn’t help but sigh.
This protagonist, she really was… too cute!
That last part hadn’t meant to slip out, but it seemed like she had mumbled it out loud, because Sakura turned around in surprise.
Ichika, the Ichika who always tormented her, the Ichika who always made fun of her and looked at her with disgust, she found Sakura cute??
There must have been something wrong. Maybe Ichika was thinking of something else, or she had simply misheard.
Ichika herself now also realised her mistake. This was bad, on their first meeting she’d already acted suspicious… She should quickly try and fix this mistake.
“Ah, did I say cute? I meant, dumb! You really are dumb!!”
This childish response didn’t seem quite right either, but Sakura decided to let it be. Maybe it was the apparent lack of sleep getting to Ichika. She left without replying.
Ichika breathed out a sigh of relief. That was dangerous…
But, the protagonist really was cute, how would she survive having to bully her!?
Ah, she was in big trouble.