My name is Melina. Melina L. Gardenia. The second princess of the elven kingdom. As a princess, you probably would think that I was pampered and did everything I wanted. But that wasn't the case. My parents, the king and queen were very strict with me. They always told me how important mana was. How important our bloodline was in order for our family to keep the throne.
Above my parents, there was one person I loved more than anything in the world. My big sister, Lorina. She was always so gentle towards me. She always played with me when I asked her to, she would listen to anything I wanted to say and she looked after me. One day, I noticed my sister spending time around a local smithy.
"Nee-sama, I was wondering, why do you always spend your time around that place?"
"Elves are known for their mana quality, but does that mean that's the only thing they are good at? I want to shatter that myth."
"Nee-sama, do you perhaps want to make a weapon?"
"Not just make one. I also want to use it. I want to learn swordsmanship."
"You might not understand now, but have you ever had the feeling that your life has been decided for you? That you have to walk a straight path? That you can't make any choices?"
"I… I don't understand."
"You will, when you get older."
At that time I didn't understand what big sis wanted to say, but as time started to pass, her words echoed in my mind. Eventually, my parents gave birth to another child. I was thrilled to have a baby brother. But when he grew up, he turned into someone stubborn and full of himself. Mother and father filled his head that he will be the next king. Most of his childhood was taken, as he was forced to learn politics and the way of elves. Once again I remembered Lorina's words.
Lorina was trying to defy her fate. And the fuse that lit that spark was a conversation I overheard.
"I refuse! Father, I do not wish to marry my brother. Yes, I do love him as a sister, but marriage should be a vow of eternal love."
"Lorina, that thing might be true for common elves, but we are the royal family. Our rule is absolute. We must make sure that the throne stays in the family. If you and Melron will conceive a child, then the bloodline and mana purity will guarantee our rule."
"How can you say that? Don't you care about my feelings? And not to mention you also plan to send Melina as an envoy to the humans when she has never stepped outside of our forest?"
"That's enough! I am the king, and you shall do as I say! It's because I care about you I let you practice those so called hobbies of yours. But I am speaking about the greater good of our family! You shall marry your brother!"
I couldn't believe my ears. That night I think I couldn't sleep at all. I was squirming in my bed, until someone knocked at my door. It was Lorina. She hugged and kissed my cheeks and told me she plans to run away. She wanted to go to the demon continent because she knew that the elves would never think to look for her there. I supported her. I wanted nee-sama to be happy. That was the last time I saw my big sister.
My parents were furious, but even though they send countless search parties, they never found Lorina. A few days after, father ordered me to go as an envoy to humanity's land. I had to take our most beloved treasure, the Mana Stone, a source of infinite mana. It was necessary for a holy ritual in the human lands. By performing this ritual, it was like maintaining a friendly status between the 2 countries.
But, something terrible happened. All my escorts were killed and the Pope took me and the Mana Stone. I probably was reported to be dead. And in a sense I was. For 10 agonizing years, they performed countless experiments on me. They inserted the Mana Stone in me, alongside various monster cores. Normally that would break any being apart. But the first core they put in me was the core of the Slime King, a monster with great regeneration powers.
If my flesh was tearing apart, soon it would heal. They modified my body. They inserted core after core: Tyrant Flame Salamander, Harpy Queen, Cavern Serpent, Helios Gryphon… Eventually I lost count. It was pure hell. My body was ripping apart. The pain was inhuman. Eventually they put me in a container with various tubes inserted in my body. I thought I could finally rest. I thought it was over. But the nightmare had only just begun.
In that container, I thought of many things. If only I had gone with my dear sister, this would have never happened. I think another year passed until they let me out. But when I came out, I had no control over my body. I couldn't speak. I couldn't lift a single finger without the Pope's permission. He turned me into a homunculus. A being that doesn't think and only does what its told. Every time he issued an order the gem around my neck would glow and compel me to obey it. I realized, he turned me into a weapon.
He wanted me to fight in his war. He wanted me to kill. I don't want to kill. I don't want to hurt anyone. But what could I do? I was trapped in my own body. When we arrived on the demon continent he made me display my power. Everyone present just started to cheer. Can nobody see my suffering? Does nobody notice that my face is devoid of life? Maybe salvation is too late. I just want this nightmare to end. I couldn't speak at that time. I slightly manage to move my lips, but no sound came out. But what I desire right now… the one thing that I want…
"Someone… please kill me…"
I knew that death was my only salvation.