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The Alpha's Beloved Villain

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Adelaide Durchville's destiny hung in the balance, intricately entwined with the ambitions of her beloved, Crown Prince Marcus of the Cretaecan Empire. A skilled manipulator, she wielded her influence to secure his ascent to the throne, only to be betrayed and condemned to a life of imprisonment for her role in his schemes. As her life ebbed away, Adelaide made a solemn vow to seek vengeance against those who had wronged her and her kin. Awakening to find herself transported back in time, Adelaide seizes the opportunity to rewrite history and safeguard her family's future. Her path to redemption is fraught with peril as she navigates the treacherous political landscape, offering a daring proposal to the formidable Duke Zachary Ambrose, her sworn enemy in her past life. With the promise of power and revenge driving her forward, Adelaide must tread carefully as she navigates the complexities of courtly intrigue. But amidst the chaos, a new romance blossoms, threatening to derail her carefully laid plans. Will Adelaide's quest for justice lead to triumph or ruin?

Prologue

As Adelaide's journey to the prison unfolds, she is met with a barrage of brutality, her once regal visage marred by the cruel hands of her captors. Each blow leaves her mouth torn and swollen, a testament to the unexpected cruelty she faces.

Despite her attempts to maintain her dignity, Adelaide is forcibly carried by the imperial guards, her ankle twisted in the process, leaving her in excruciating pain.

As the agony coursed through her body, Adelaide found herself rendered immobile, her every movement met with searing pain. With each step, her broken arms screamed in protest, the weight of the torment dragging her down. The once proud wrists, now contorted and swollen, bore witness to the relentless brutality inflicted upon her.

The guards forcefully threw Adelaide to the chilling stone floor as they arrived at the majestic imperial hall. The sudden impact caused her to tumble and writhe in pain. A solitary tear escaped her eye, betraying the agony coursing through her body.

'So, it was like this. After all the years of scheming, I had ended up in the same situation as those people I had destroyed.'

At that moment, Adelaide's eyes locked onto Emperor Marcus. She sensed a glimmer of triumph in his gaze, a telltale sign of the conspiracy woven against her. This game is over for her.

'I will be accused of murdering my uncle, who was also the Emperor's esteemed mentor, branding me a criminal. And from here, a cascade of my past misdeeds will come to light. Well played, Your Majesty.'

She had indeed committed numerous crimes in the past, all in service to the Emperor. Emperor Marcus was well aware of it, making it easier for him to gather evidence against her. It was evident that the mastermind behind this conspiracy was none other than Emperor Marcus himself, the very man she had loved and trusted.

"I can't believe you committed such a crime, Adel. Did you kill Count Bronson?" Emperor Marcus asked.

To those around them, Emperor Marcus's tone remained unchanged. However, for Adelaide, who had been at his side for years, there was a discernible note of satisfaction in his voice.

Emperor Marcus raised his hand, and the imperial guards ushered in another woman. Adelaide's eyes widened as she recognized who it was.

'Lily Rowan... How could you betray me?!'

Lily, one of Adelaide's long-serving maids, had been by her side for years. Adelaide had rescued her from abuse during a visit to a town outside the imperial capital. The depth of Adelaide's trust in her was profound, making it difficult for her to accept that Lily was among those who betrayed her!

Lily knelt in silence, and Emperor Marcus asked her.

"Has Lady Durchville ordered you to poison Count Bronson?"

"Yes, Your Majesty," Lily answered politely.

"Lady Durchville murdered Count Bronson after he uncovered her involvement in money laundering. Secretly trading with the kingdom's enemies to bolster her wealth, she couldn't risk exposure. Upon learning of the count's discovery, she dispatched me to eliminate him to safeguard her secret."

Everyone in the hall buzzed with shock. They did not expect Adelaide would be able to commit such a monstrosity.

"Do you have anything to say Lady Durchville?"

Adelaide showed him a dry smile.

What is he thinking? She doesn't deny her evil deeds or the lives she's taken. But to be framed for a crime she didn't commit? it's as if he thinks of her as a fool. Why would she trade with a kingdom drained by war? And using Lily to commit the crime? It's like shouting her guilt for all to hear. She's not that dumb to commit such an obvious act.

"Adel, there is solid evidence of your crimes. But, I will still give you a chance to explain yourself."

Does he think there is still a need for her explanations now? Emperor Marcus had already decided to abandon and kill her.

'Explanations are completely useless. No matter what I said, I had no way of surviving. Since he had decided to kill me, my death is already nailed.'

How could she have missed it? Emperor Marcus played her like a pawn, using her love to his advantage. She even ignored his destruction of her family, all for his gain. If this person had truly loved her, he would not have done that to her. How naive, Adelaide!

"Your Majesty, everyone is just a pawn in your eyes," Adelaide said. Her mouth was full of blood, and her teeth ripped apart her tongue. She bore the pain as it was the only way for her consciousness not to slip away.

"Now that you wield the utmost authority in this empire, cease your habit of shifting the blame onto others for your deeds. Consider this my final advice," Adelaide pronounced firmly, her voice laced with resignation and defiance.

"Insolence!" One of the imperial guards slapped her in the face again.

"Take this criminal to the darkest prison! She will be given capital punishment for her crimes after the trial!"

Adelaide looked at Emperor Marcus with her puffy eyes. However, Emperor Marcus just looked at her and did not say another word.

Adelaide's memories blurred as she entered the dreaded confines of the dark prison, a place reserved for the most depraved criminals. There, she endured unspeakable tortures and coerced into signing damning documents. Subsequently, she faced trial in the grand court, presided over by the Emperor, and selected nobles and officials who had high standings in the monarchy.

During the trial, accusers and witnesses emerged one by one, each presenting daming evidence against Adelaide. It felt as though every detail had been meticulously orchestrated in advance. Some crimes were indeed attributed to Adelaide, while others seemed to be twisted fabrications with dark and scandalous narratives.

Despite Adelaide's sharp intellect and unwavering resolve, her body succumbed to the relentless torment in prison. With the weight of those crimes laid upon her, she faced the grim fate of a public execution.

***

"Lift her head," At Emperor Marcus's command, Adelaide, whose hair was strewn on the floor, was grabbed and held up.

Adelaide's once lustrous hair, now drenched in blood, was hoisted into the air by a rough hand. Its rich, golden yellow strands resembled the tangled mane of a wild beast, disheveled and muddied, betraying the elegance it once possessed.

She shut her eyes tightly, the swelling from numerous bruises making it difficult. Despite feeling betrayed and bitter, she had nowhere to escape. Now, she could only await the inevitable embrace of death, like a condemned queen awaiting her final decree from the King of Death.

Soon, Emperor Marcus lowered his hand, signaling the execution of the empire's most notorious villainess.

"Your Majesty, can I talk to my cousin for the last time?"

When the Emperor gave her a nod, she smiled benevolently. It was implying that she had already forgiven Adelaide for killing her father.

How could she be so benevolent to the wicked girl who had tried to hurt and kill her?

Lady Eloise Bronson, the beautiful and gentle flower of the empire, moved her body closer to Adelaide.

"Adel, I... I have something to tell you," Eloise gently brushed away the tears clinging to her eyelids and knelt before Adelaide. Leaning close, she whispered into Adelaide's ear, as if conveying a final, sacred message.

"How was it, cousin? You are so stupid."

Adelaide's eyes widened, as if on the brink of bursting. Slowly, she turned her stiff, bloated head towards Eloise, who greeted her with a menacing smile. It was a smile so pure and beautiful, akin to a flower in full bloom.

"I thought you were so smart, yet you still fell into my schemes," Eloise whispered, her voice dripping with disdain. "I have always wanted to kill you, but I know killing you so easily would not give me any satisfaction at all. I even sacrificed my father to see your downfall, my beloved cousin."

Eloise struggled to contain her laughter, barely able to suppress the urge to burst into gleeful chuckles. Her smile widened, as if Adelaide's sobs were music to her ears, filling her with an inexplicable joy that threatened to spill over into a jubilant dance.

"Before I forget," Eloise's dripped with malice, "Your family's demise rests solely on your shoulders. Your father's blood is on your hands. Did you truly believe His Majesty loved you? You're mistaken... You were nothing but a pawn in his game."

Eloise finished her speech and stood up. She looked back at the execution table before slowly returning to her spot earlier with a sad, regretful expression.

"I forgive you, Adelaide. I'm sure my father has also forgiven you too."

Emperor Marcus lifted his hand, signaling the execution. The imperial guard hoisted his gleaming sword aloft, its edge sharp enough to cleave through bone with ease. With a swift motion, the blade sliced through the air, severing Adelaide's head from her body in an instant, bringing a tragic end to her life.

Even though Adelaide's head was severed, she could not feel pain, grief, or sadness.

'I yearn to turn back the hands of time, to seek vengeance upon you. In the next life, I vow to extract tenfold retribution for your transgressions against me. I would even bargain with the devil himself if it meant securing my revenge.'

Chapter 1: The Beginning of an End

Adelaide's eyes fluttered open, momentarily blinded by the radiant sunlight streaming through the window. She quickly shut them against the glaring brightness, taking a moment to adjust to the golden beams illuminating her surroundings.

'Wait, something is strange.'

Nestled in the embrace of soft sheets, Adelaide basked in the gentle warmth of sunlight filtering through the window. It was a stark contrast to the harrowing ordeal she had just endured. The familiar comfort of her bed transported her back to a time of youthful innocence, before her family's downfall and the specter of her impending execution loomed over her.

'It feels like I have gone back to the past... Wait! What?'

As Adelaide jolted upright in bed, her surroundings greeted her with a sense of familiarity and nostalgia. The expansive mattress cradled her, while the ceiling above bore the same intricate design she once cherished. The bluish marble

Heroes

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