Don't be intimidated by the great wall of text in the first chapters, once the family drama is out of the way (albeit temporarily, with a few loose ends to tidy up in the future), Tsubaki's life is quite enjoyable and entertaining. The romance is also slow going, the story having more focus on Tsubaki's school life and friends while she prepares to take countermeasures against the selfproclaimed Heroine.
Unlike the rest of her Villainess Noble Girl cohorts, she isn't necessarily acting against or wholeheartedly into her designated role. She just didn't try to resolve the misunderstanding of her character for her own convenience and use it as a shield to protect her family (particularly her mother and her maternal cousin who is one of the love interests) from the 'Heroine' and said heroine's mother.
For those curious about the male lead, their relationship can be summed up in this dialouge:
"I have a favor to ask"
"Don't just agree so easily, let her finish! Look at her face, she's obviously going to ask for something troublesome!"
"But I trust Tsubaki won't request something that will inconvenience/hurt me in any way"
I mean, his obsession with gathering Ancient Power to protect himself actually has him interact with key people from the Plot. He treats powerful people well because he doesn’t want them to have a reason to hold a grudge against him. He doesn’t avoid confrontation and begrudgingly devises plans to derail the villains simply because he doesn’t want to be responsible for the lives of the innocent.
I bet he'll encounter those crazy mermaids and the Whale Tribe on his "sightseeing trip" after the events in the capital.
Danna-sama doesn't have much of an active role in the early chapters apart from mentions and his regular visits to the main mansion to check up on Viola. But after his mistress leaves out of her own accord, he starts getting his life together and take interest on his duties as a Duke. All thanks to Viola turning on the once empty and cold mansion into a home worth coming back to.
Qi Xiao Yan treated the divorce as more of a Cool Down Period for the both of them, because he knew if he left their personality clashes and problems attaining mutual understanding fester then they would really end up in separate ways with no chance of reconciliation.
Contrary to popular belief, his first love is his wife and not the young starlet that used to be his basketball team's manager ("Do you believe in love at first sight?" "No" "Before I met Yang Wei, neither did I.") .
He also tried to covertly understand his ex-wife's passion for art by signing up for her virtual class, which was a sweet gesture and showed his sincerity. He still worries about her well-being and checked his phone plus her social media for updates on her life as well as precautionary measures in case of emergency. He also took great efforts to make romantic gestures as her ex-husband turned boyfriend, which yielded hilarious results. All in all still a dedicated husband. Is it any wander she still choose him? Lousy second male lead aside.
The Princess' unique status made her a frequent target for assassination ever since she was born, her death capable of creating a civil war.
The Princess' official first meeting with her husband has her cowering from his billion watt smile.
"Are you listening?"
"... Please don't be angry"
"I'm not angry"
"I can hear the anger from your voice"
"You're making me angry"
"But you just said you weren't!"
But once they clear out the air enough to have a decent conversation, they get along just fine. Enough to make the Prince's brothers ecstatic.
"The sweets are wasted on Elder Brother"
Considering the handling of the split personality disorder, it's a mixed bag. I am not quite sure what the author wants to do half the time and since this is lighthearted, it wouldn't delve much deeper on Yu Yi's pysche. I think it's more a of gimmick than any real use. His Other was quite entertaining since he's compensating for Yu Yi's detachment and lack of interest towards interpersonal relations and emotions. Aka he's there to fulfill his innermost desires and as a result is more proactive.
By the latest chapter I've read, the main storyline Tiera knew by heart has ended on a full circle and bittersweet note. My heart hurts, hopefully the author would fully expand on her own happy end since it isn't constrained by the Plot anymore. As the saying goes, Zero is where everything starts...
The romantic development is admittedly frustrating and lacking. The couple tragically have few scenes thanks to spending time apart from each other over the duration of the novel.
On the bright side, Their late night talks can be heartwarming and funny since Noel either ends up exasperated by her stubbornness or Haruka flustered by his casual teasing.
Though Haruka's constant melancholic musings over Noel can be a bit annoying. But she tries hard to mature once she got over her insecurities. And boy, Haruka did a lot of stupid decisions avoiding her Knight ("In your eyes, you'd rather reach out to them than me?"). To the point that Noel finally snapped when the eccentric Summoner teleported her and got her in huge trouble.
Let's call it Character Development and a much needed life lesson.
They expanded on Filimina's feelings in a much more clear cut manner by giving the two chidhood sweethearts' poignant interactions from the get go. Making her sound less like a neutral bystander and more of an exasperated fiancee.
Her own insecurities and complicated feelings on the matter of their engagement are shown in the original, her own actions betraying her true feelings despite the casual way she phrases things. Yet it wasn't until when she was told of his possible demise that Filimina dropped the pretense of being unmoved.
As the only living relic that knows about the monsters that plauge the fort, she eventually went to aid in the war effort. She's a big softie, this tsundere former Saint. Her reluctance to enter a relationship is understandable, given her immortality. Thankfully, they didn't have to go for a bittersweet parting and lifted the curse.
It makes me think having the characters visit a shop with the name "Meruru" is a deliberate reference from the author. Mariela reminds me most of Rorona (Atelier Rorona: Alchemist of Arland). Just with a bit more spunk. It doesn't help that she has a handsome man following after her lmao.
Our man (?) Sieg has done a lot of stupid things in his life thanks to his blessed circumstances as a person with a spirit eye. Once the thing that made him special was gone, his arrogance further doomed him in a life of servitude as a slave. He made a lot of stupid decisions and his gamble of saving his former Master's son caused a chain reaction that led him to meeting Mariela. While he was still over the moon at meeting his Goddess, Lynx decided to crash his delusions and make him truly question his life choices as a dedicated freeloader.