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Heartwarming / My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!

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The friendship that transcended death
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  • Catarina's actions might be done out of preventing her doom flags, but part of the reason is because she genuinely cares about her friends (though she unwittingly forms a harem in the process) and is genuinely worried about their fate if she won't do something about it:
    • After injuring Catarina with an earth golem, Keith attempts to shut himself in his room so as to prevent himself from hurting anyone he cares about. Catarina, after busting down the door to his room with an axe, apologizes to Keith, stating her carelessness was why she got hurt. She then assures Keith that he's not a monster and that she'll be by his side as they train their magic. And before the incident, Catarina finally clearing up Keith's name by telling the truth to the Duchess that he's an illegitimate child from a distant relative and not from the Duke himself, as well as clearing up the misunderstanding between her parents that lead them to finally realize that their feelings are requited all along. After eight years of torment from his former home, Keith finally finds love and stability in his adoptive family in this series, averting the additional seven years of same horrible treatment by the Claes family before the game starts.
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    • Mary and Sophia getting out from their miserable situations of being bullied and their self-imposed isolation thanks to Catarina's friendship and goodness, becoming strong-willed as they open up.
    • Geordo has always felt heavily disconnected from others due to how talented he was compared to everybody else, with him only seeing romance as a way to further his goals for himself as well as to the Crown. When he realizes that depth of Catarina's personality change in the series, seeing how refreshingly different she is compared to everybody else awakens genuine romantic interest from him. The first thing that he does after taking steps to connect with others is to repair his relationship with his younger twin Alan, who he finally sees eye to eye with him and vice versa.
    • Alan finally sees his own merits thanks to Catarina's complimenting his skill in music and her friendship with him makes him realize that just because Geordo is better than him at most things, doesn't mean he lacks talents that he's better at than his twin brother. Since then, he stops comparing himself to Geordo, becoming more confident with himself as he focuses on what he can do, and slowly mends his broken relationship with his twin brother. The culmination of his change shows when he placed third on the exams (to join the Student Council) at the academy, content with the fact that while he isn't the best, he's still one of the best.
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    • Nicol finally loosens his guard after seeing Catarina's kindness towards his sister, didn't shun her from her albinism, and shares his sentiment of him having a loving family. After so many years of hearing the same insults and empty sympathies against his family, most especially his sister who they think that she's a burden to him when she's not, small wonder he develops feelings for Catarina, even if it will be amount to nothing since she's engaged to Geordo. Regardless, he is contented of being by her side and he is always wishing for her happiness.
  • The series in general takes a very gentle, wholesome approach to the harem trope. For example, while Mary may scheme of ways to get Catarina alone with her and has stated she will do anything to win her love, not once do her schemes do harm in any way to the other members of the harem. In fact, Episode 8 of the anime shows that Mary and Maria are actually nice friends who play off each other well. Likewise with Geordo, despite all of his entitlement towards Catarina and annoyance at his rivals, understands that the people around her are important and they are the living proof of why he loves her: like him, she changed them for the better. When Maria goes missing, all of them spend every waking moment searching for her. And lastly, they each have stated that if they wind up not being picked by Catarina, they will still love her and support her happiness. Thus, even if every single member of the harem is dead-set on winning Catarina's love, they're all True Companions who care for and aid each other. In a way, this is just another way Catarina has helped all of them, especially Sophia, Mary, and Maria who originally came from friendless, bullied backgrounds.
  • Anne's POV chapter starts with her exasperation over Catarina, calling her a problem child and pointing out her denseness and less-than-ladylike behavior. Then we get to the second half, when she explains that despite this, she loves Catarina because Catarina was able to break her Yes-Man attitude by being so unpredictable that it was impossible for Anne to suck up to Catarina. Catarina's intervention then saves Anne from a terrible arranged marriage. It ends with Anne expressing gratefulness for Catarina and her wish to serve Catarina for the rest of her life no matter where she may go.
  • Maria's POV chapter has her starting off about how being born with light magic began a spiral of turmoil and sadness in her life that leaves her ostracized by her village, abandoned by her father, and distant from her mother. She then begins losing hope of being happy when she's bullied at magic school due to being a commoner, only for Catarina to step in, protect her, and be her friend. What really makes an impact on Maria is that Catarina openly sees her not as "the girl with light magic", but the hard worker and wonderful person she is, which is all Maria ever wanted. Enough so that Maria begins crying when Catarina says it. Catarina's actions and friendship end up restoring Maria's hope of living a happy life. What was once the catalyst of her tragedy, namely the emergence of her magic, becomes the key for her to meet Catarina and everyone who appreciate her for who she is.
    • Later, we get a POV section from Maria's mother, Mrs. Campbell, who's been dealing with the fallout over her daughter's magic resulting in rumors that she's an adultress and her husband leaving as a result of the rumors. She first blames Maria for this, but then feels guilt that she even had those thoughts knowing full well Maria isn't to blame. However, her resultant guilt leaves her unable to look Maria in the eyes, and she worries Maria will never be happy. Then during summer break, Catarina and Keith make an impromptu visit, and Mrs. Campbell sees just how much of a difference Catarina has made in Maria's life. As Catarina and Keith leave, Mrs. Campbell asks Catarina to take care of Maria, and the rift between Maria and her mother begins healing.
  • Episode 5 of the anime adds a little scene to Catarina and Keith visiting the Campbell home. When Maria decides to bake some sweets for Catarina and Keith, Catarina in turn offers to fix up and plant some seedlings in Mrs. Campbell's garden. When Mrs. Campbell sees Catarina working hard to help her family, as well as how much of a positive effect she's had in Maria's life, she realizes she needs to change and starts helping Maria with the sweets.
  • Episode 6 of the anime has a scene where Anne and Millidiana talk about Catarina and her personality change after she hit her head when she was younger. Anne talks about how Tom the gardener and Joana the head maid enjoy her presence and opened up to her, along with Anne saying she enjoys the time she spends with Catarina. With all of her exasperation towards her daughter's antics, Millidiana then admits that Catarina is why she has a loving relationship with her husband Luigi and that Catarina's influence made the Claes household a happier place.
    • Later, Catarina and Keith are sitting under the shade of a tree, and Catarina dozes off while lying on the grass. Keith recalls a time when they were younger and Keith fell asleep and had a nightmare about his previous home. Catarina then wakes up Keith after she hears him moaning in his sleep. After waking up, Keith says it was because of a nightmare he had, to which Catarina promises that she'll wake him up if it ever happens again. Keith then recalls that after that, he never had any more nightmares.
  • Catarina's relationship with Maria may be one of the most selfless and caring in fiction. Despite fearing at first the idea that interacting with Maria could result in her exile or even death, Catarina's kindhearted nature spurs her to protect Maria from bullies and come to her rescue multiple times. Even after being accused of bullying Maria by a bunch of girls, Catarina's first thought after the ordeal is to worry about Maria. And in return, Maria defends Catarina from those accusations.
  • The Stinger for Episode 8 starts off with Catarina deciding to take off her shoes and feel the grass on her feet, which is followed by Alan coming by and getting embarrassed seeing her bare feet. What comes after is Catarina and Alan spending the evening together, with Catarina roping Alan into experiencing such simple joys as the feeling of grass on bare feet and watching the sunset from a tree branch. The whole ordeal ends up bringing about several smiles and quite a bit of blushing from Alan, especially when they sit close together on the branch. Of course, that's before Mary notices them together and quickly hurries to break up their moment.
  • When Catarina confronts Sirius about having dark magic, he becomes enraged and tells her that he's always hated her. Even between this and knowing that Sirius is the dark magic user who kidnapped Maria and could potentially kill all her friends, though, Catarina's first instinct is to notice the pained look on his face and ask him if he's okay.
  • Crossing over with Tear Jerker: After Sirius uses dark magic to put Catarina in a coma, we see just how much Catarina means to her friends and how scared they are of losing her.
  • While in her coma, Catarina dreams of being in her past life with A-chan. A-chan ends up helping Catarina break out of her coma, first by reminding her that the world she's dreaming of isn't her world anymore, and then showing Catarina all of her friends calling out to her, begging her to wake up. Catarina and A-chan share a tearful goodbye, with A-chan telling Catarina what she needs to know in order to save Sirius. Or more appropriately, Rafael.
  • After waking up from her coma and rescuing Maria, Catarina confronts Rafael. She has every reason to be angry with him for putting Maria and herself in trouble thanks to his actions, but because she believes he's a good person and believes that his actions were not truly his will, she instead shows empathy, recognizing that he is suffering for some reason. She asks why he's suffering, saying no one deserves to be forced to suffer alone, and offers to hear him out and be his friend. This ends up saving him from the influence of a malicious ghost who was responsible for the ritual that led him to live as Sirius and encouraging his wrongdoings against Catarina and Maria, and breaking the hold of the dark magic surrounding him.
  • The final part of Episode 12 includes various scenes which show how Catarina made the world around her a better place:
    • Duke and Duchess Claes are on a balcony, welcoming the arrival of spring, with Duke Claes holding his wife close to him. Joana the head maid and another maid are behind them, smiling brightly.
    • Tom the gardener is happily working the garden, content with life.
    • Mrs. Campbell is tending to the garden Catarina helped set up.
    • Nicol is with his father, preparing to eventually succeed him as the next earl and the premier.
    • Anne is hanging up some laundry, doing so with a smile.
    • Rafael is hard at work with his new job in the Department of Magic. He might not have graduated from the academy like his fellow second-year Nicol, but at least the Ministry of Magic is kind enough to offer the man a job. After living for years under a false identity in fear of his life and plotting for revenge, he's now free.
    • Finally, we get Catarina walking up to the gates of the Magic Academy, thinking about how she thought her luck was horrible in being reincarnated as an otome game villainess, but now considers herself blessed to have met all the people in her life. The scene ends with Catarina running up to her friends while they all happily greet her.
  • In the second story of the comic anthology, Catarina is sick and unable to get out of bed. Geordo begins thinking about whether she's okay and how empty he feels without her. He begins feeling depressed, to the point that he begins overworking himself with his Student Council duties. Mary, Sophia, and Maria notice how much distress he's under, and after a suggestion from Maria, Geordo visits Catarina with a gift of flowers and herbal tea to help Catarina recover. He then tells Catarina how difficult it is to be without her, giving her a kiss on the forehead. Geordo ends up falling ill as a result, but since Catarina's recovered, he doesn't mind the trade-off.
  • Catarina's redemption arc in Verge of Destruction is even more heartwarming than in the main series. In that story, she doesn't regain her Past-Life Memories until after she's already started the semester at Magic Academy that ends with her doom, and she's already bullied Maria several times. Instantly upon regaining her memories, Catarina has a change of heart and can't understand why she wanted to bully Maria (or anyone for that matter) in the first place. When she realizes that her doom is imminent, she desperately tries to mend the relationships that lead to her destruction, but there are few who believe she's serious, and even fewer who aren't too bitter to care. Catarina states that regardless of how her flags end up, she can't live with herself for what she did unless she makes an honest attempt at apologizing.
    • Also in Verge of Destruction, Maria Campbell demonstrates that she truly deserves the title of heroine that she had within the game. When Catarina hits her head while in the midst of bullying her, Maria's first act is to ask if Catarina is alright. Later, when Catarina begins helping Maria against other bullies and then makes a heartfelt apology, Maria forgives her from the bottom of her heart and asks if the two can be friends.

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