It's The First Time For Both Of Us - Chapter 4
Translator and Editor: Skye and Wyvern
I didn’t know if he was talking to himself or asking me. He was just looking at me while his mouth moved.
I closed my mouth and nodded.
Anyway, I was able to get on the carriage successfully. It was a really spacious one too, even bigger than my old room.
While I was busy examining the interior, my luggage was loaded and the door closed right after it. I quickly dragged my suitcase toward me. It was a gift made by my mom and all my favorite clothes were in it, so I had to protect it.
My dad looked at me and my luggage. “It’s a tight fit.”
It wasn’t tight at all. The carriage had enough space for ten more people and the suitcase was only as big as my body.
I shook my head. “It’s all right because it’s my luggage.”
Silence filled the carriage.
The chairs were upholstered in a soft red cloth, so luxurious that I felt like I would slide off. One of the cushions could probably buy me a month’s worth of food.
I stuck out my head through the window to identify the guardian before I left.
‘You have to follow me well.’
[Don’t worry, master.]
The guardian responded as if he had read my thoughts.
I felt my father’s eyes on me as I was checking the guardian, but I didn’t say anything, and he didn’t mention it too. A few minutes passed before the carriage started moving. I took out a candy and bit into one, trying to ignore the awkward silence.
“You look like Yulien.”
I turned my head to look at my dad, but he wasn’t looking at me. A hand partially covered his mouth while the other rested on the windowsill, but I definitely heard his voice. Perhaps my hearing was good because I was used to my mother’s soft voice.
‘Do I really look like her? I’ve always heard that, though, but…’
I inherited her black hair, but my eyes and hers had different colors. Mine looked like my dad’s.
The carriage was uncomfortably quiet again.
The place where I used to live was at the edge of the northern forests. The journey to my father’s estate might take days, and it hurt just to think about it. The sun had already set but we hadn’t stopped once. My back ached and my hips were stiff.
I stretched to the right, then to the left, no matter how much I moved, my whole body was stiff. At this point, I was almost begging my dad to notice me.
Wasn’t he uncomfortable?
‘Have you moved at all? Are you a statue?’
Dad sat for hours as he was except for the occasional eye contact with me.
‘Really? Are you sure you’re not uncomfortable?’
I kept moving so that I could reach my father’s gaze.
Has he been in that position for about 10 minutes?
‘Oh, you’re a tough guy, Dad.’
It was awkward to ask for a favor, but I was about to bring it up because I couldn’t help but want to rest. The carriage stopped as if it knew how I felt.
The mere fact that the carriage stopped seemed to improve my confidence.
“Your Excellency, I have something to tell you.”
Soon, the coachman I saw when I first entered my father’s carriage appeared.
“Forgive me, but if you don’t mind, may I take a break here?” The coachman, who was looking at me for a while under the carriage, bowed to my father.
“Is the carriage broken?”
The coachman shook his head. “No, that’s not it, so I thought you’d have a hard time moving around the carriage… …and there’s open space overhead. I thought you might have wanted to stretch your legs, so I took the liberty of stopping.”
Oh, the coachman is the best!
I stared at my dad until he gave his permission. Even though our eyes met, he did not open his mouth for a long time.
‘You did it for me, right?’
The coachman smiled at me.
‘I don’t really like bearded men, but I really like you.’
I quickly got up from my seat, moving before my father did, and sighed at how weak my body felt. And then my next problem. The carriage was too high for me to get off and the coachman was nowhere to be found.
‘Sigh, my body is so weak.’
However, the carriage is too high. The coachman that used to smile as soon as my father’s permission is already gone.
Maybe he forgot the stepladder.
I sneaked back and looked at my dad.
‘I want to go outside the door, I want to go outside.’
He got up from his seat and I almost cheered, except his arms looked like they would grab me by my collar again. I’d have to tell him not to do that so I could prevent being strangled.
Fortunately, my father was sensible this time. Instead of grabbing the scruff of my neck, he went towards me.
He came down from the carriage immediately.
My feet touched the ground and there was a natural sound of pain.
The carriage stood had stopped along the flat, barren ground. I looked around and ran to the place with the most grass.
‘Oh, right. I didn’t bring my dad here.’
I looked back and fortunately, my father was chasing after me.
I wondered where the missing coachman had gone, and it turned out he was bringing two low chairs to sit on. Looking at the icy escorts in the distance, it didn’t look like they would be the ones using them.
“There’s no separate chair… …so please sit here, madam.”
I smiled warmly at him. It seemed like only this man was not as afraid of my father, who was currently standing stiffly like an old tree.
Shouldn’t we say our thanks for these?
‘Daddy’s strong and cool, but he has no common sense,’ my mom used to say.
I couldn’t help but put my hands together and bow to the coachman instead of my father. “Thank you for saving me a chair, Mr. Coachman.”
His eyes widened, tears welling up. “Oh, this is nothing that needs thanking. Make yourself at ease, please. I apologize that this is the best I could do because I was rushing.”
“No, this is good.”
“Then, sir, enjoy your break.” The coachman bowed deeply and went towards the carriage.
I sat up in my chair and looked up at my dad. Sitting in such a vast place, I felt like I was touching the sky.
“Uh… Dad, sit here, too.”
My father, who flatly refused my recommendation, didn’t go anywhere but stood beside me.
I grew bored and sat down, holding a stone and drawing on the ground instead of on paper.
Back then, I would imitate my mom’s movements when she sat across me and drew. Unlike that time, now I could feel an intense gaze from above as I drew a picture that my mom and I had been doing for a long time.
My father looked down at me. “What’s that drawing?”
I didn’t know he would be curious about my paintings.
I gently explained each of my paintings to my dad. “This is the moon. This is a star.”
“This is how they rise.”
“Yes… the moon, the stars, my mom taught me about them.”
I flattened the ground the best I could and redrew it more clearly. A pointed crescent moon with a star in the center, marked as if it was rising. True, it seemed a strange thing to draw, not a person nor an animal, but it was one I liked because my mother used to trace it with her fingers on my cheeks and back.
“Alright,” my dad answered casually, turning away like he had lost interest in the drawing I had worked so hard on.
‘What? And I even drew it again for him.”
I was disappointed in his reaction, so I threw the stone away and sat back comfortably on the chair, stretching my legs and plucking grass for an… indeterminable amount of time…
“Let’s go now,” came Dad’s voice.
Well, it was going to get dark soon.
‘If I knew this would happen, I would have stayed close to the carriage.’
I shouldn’t have run all the way here.
I got up from my seat and followed my dad heading to the carriage. But his strides were too long. No matter how fast I ran, the distance between us only increased. Still chasing after him, I had no choice but to call out.
“W-wait… Let’s go together!”
In response, he went back and reached out to me.
‘No way, was he gonna hug me?’
I held out my arms, eyes squeezed shut. I was hefted into the air… but isn’t this position…? Huh?
My eyes opened. In that second, with no time to process it all, my dad had picked me up and held me to his side like a package. He walked carefully, at least, but it was still absurd. Was this a common way for adults to hug children?
‘I’m your daughter! Why are you hugging me this way?!”
Suddenly, I remembered that in the original story, my parents loved each other so much they didn’t know what to do with themselves.
‘What the hell…’
I looked at my father who carried me up to the carriage like a package, waiting for me to sit casually.
But I heard that the temple was once called the sword of the Empire and that it is not enough to be trusted by the Emperor.
Also, it seemed that my dad really wasn’t good at taking care of children.
Sitting half-heartedly, I decided that I should prioritize helping my father become a functioning member of society before saving both of our lives. As I was thinking, my father ordered the carriage to start, and we looked out of the windows silently.
I realized that I no longer smelled blood on him.
Sleeping in the carriage wasn’t as uncomfortable as I thought, the guards laid out a lot of soft blankets seemingly from out of nowhere. It was a great help, especially as the carriage ran for two days straight through the vast hilltops, where the walls began.
My dad is sitting upright as usual.
Meanwhile, I am impressed by the scenery outside the changed window.
‘Why is the wall so wide?’
The carriage, going alongside the endless wall in the distance, reached a large, guarded gate that took a long time to pass. When we stopped in front of a large mansion, I could see a lot of people bowing down quietly in our direction.
The door opened and Dad lifted me up again like the last time and set me on the ground.
Still, educating him would be worthwhile. Also, if he strangled me again, his future would be at risk.
“From now on, you will stay here.”
I nodded as I saw my luggage being lowered.
“…This is where you were supposed to have been since the beginning,” my father said in a lonely voice.