From Now On, I Can Smile (Part 2)
I entered the Imperial Palace and headed up. It had been some time since I was last back at the palace. The last time I was there, I felt entirely different. I was in a rush the last time I came and left in a rush. As a matter of fact, I didn’t even know if I could return again. Fortunately, I was finally back, and I didn’t have to worry about not being able to make it back.
I wasn’t in a rush to see Vyvyan or Dragon Mom. Dragon Mom was likely learning how to live in the North, all the various etiquette and so forth. I wanted to see my girls and wives most. I wanted to hug my Lucia, my Nier, my Vera, Nona and Daisy. They were my most treasured assets.
Nier carried Daisy to the entrance of the main hall. When she saw me walk in, she cried as though I opened her tear floodgates. Her tears just began to fall onto Daisy’s face without a word. Daisy looked blankly at me as if she never expected me to appear. I walked up to them with a smile. Nier shoved Daisy into the hands of a maid next to her, and then leapt over to tightly hug me. She hugged me with all her might and wailed on my shoulders. . She almost snapped my back with how tight she hugged me.
I imagined I’d be met with that sort of scene. I gently stroked Nier’s back; I stroked the back of her head and pony tail. Daisy began to cry out to me and desperately try to reach me. However, I thought Nier cared about me more, unfortunately. So accordingly, I caressed Daisy’s forehead with one hand to calm her down. I softly said, “Sorry, Nier. I’m covered all over in scales now. It must be uncomfortable to hug me now.”
Next to my ear and in her hoarse voice, Nier desperately tried to give a reply: “N-No… I-I already know… Dear… I know what happened… I know what happened… Regardless of how you are, I’m happy, as long as you return to my side. I’m so glad you’ve recovered; I’m very, very happy right now… It’s all right. It’s all right. Your body is still warm despite being covered in scales. I want to cry so badly. Dear, you’ve finally come back to me. You finally… won’t leave anymore…”
I gave firm nod. Nier leaned in toward the side of my face with her teary face and rubbed it against mine. Perhaps she was trying to prove she didn’t mind my scales. I could feel the cold sensation and tears on her face. I could hear the sound of her skin rubbing against my scales. She didn’t mind, though. Instead, she kissed the scales on my face.
I clasped Nier’s face and gave her a sincere kiss. While all other parts of my skin had become scales, I still had my human lips. Nier cupped my face with one hand and went into the kiss so fast that our teeth banged against each other. Before I could react, however, Nier’s lips were pressed against mine, giving me no space to dodge.
The passionate kiss didn’t resemble the blissful kiss given in a reunion at all. I would actually describe it as feeling the wildness of Nier after a month… I was sure I’d be with her for the night; I probably wouldn’t get to sleep. Her body came closer and closer to mine. She kissed me with complete disregard for everything else. I didn’t need to respond to it. She swept up my saliva with her tongue and swallowed it. She practically wanted to bite my tongue off and take it; her tongue rampaged in my mouth. She mixed our taste together, and then swallowed it.
I felt as though Nier sucked everything out of me. She only released me when she was on the border of suffocation; even then, she was reluctant to release me. Her face was slightly flush red. She had a scary, hazy look in her eyes. Her hand subconsciously grabbed my belt, and then she pulled herself in. She was virtually trying to fuse herself with me. Although I wanted to get cosy with her for a while, we couldn’t do it there. I quickly tugged her to stop her from getting closer then swiftly grabbed Daisy from the maid and held her between us as a means of stopping Nier from using her leg to lock me.
From my arms, Daisy looked at me with puzzlement. I literally didn’t dare to grab her arm. I desperately leaned my body back so that she wouldn’t fall. I carefully caressed her. The maid was shocked to the point that she went pale. She was practically ready to jump in between us in order to prevent Daisy from falling.
Nier calmed down. She sad to see my awkward actions. She asked, “Dear, don’t you know how to hold a child? Have you not held Daisy in so long?”
“That’s not it. I’m just… I’m just… afraid I’ll hurt her.”
Daisy blinked. I blankly looked at her gleaming eyes. Her eyes were almost the exact same as Nier’s. The sunlight caused my scales to emit an unnatural light. It was akin to blades reflecting metal. My scales made me impervious to blades, but it also meant that I was more similar to an animal. If Daisy was to slide against my scales in the reverse direction they ran, she would cut herself if there was a single scale that was protruding.
Nier walked up to me and looked at Daisy. She softly said, “Hold her properly, Dear; hold her properly. Daisy has been looking forward to your return; she has always looked forward to your return.
“I’m scared. My scales are very dangerous. Daisy hasn’t grown up yet. Her skin is so soft. If a single scale of mine was sticking out, it will scratch her.”
Nier softly giggled then gently and slowly ran her hand along my arm and down to my fingers. I felt the a gentle and warm trail. Nier focused purely on running her finger along all the scales on my arm. Finally, she softly said, “It’s all right, Dear; it’s all right. I’ve checked your arm. There are no hazardous scales. Your scales are still all down. I don’t think they’ll stand up if you don’t use force, so it’s fine. Hold her properly, Dear. She really missed you.”
Nier tightly grabbed my arm as though she was trying to give me encouragement. Daisy’s patience was worn out. She kept on crying out to me from my arm. She tried to bash my face with her tiny hand. I hopelessly laughed. I finally mustered up the courage to hold her with a normal grip. Nevertheless, her anger didn’t seem to subside. She looked at me then turned her head away and began extended her hand toward Nier.
I smiled helplessly, and then gently rocked my arms to placate Daisy: “Don’t be angry with Dad. Dad is sorry. Dad knows you want Dad to hold you. Dad swears Dad really wanted to hold you. Dad dreamt of you every night when Dad was out. The torment was so painful that Dad wanted to come back, but Dad genuinely couldn’t come back. Dad loves you; Dad loves you very much. Dad wants to hold you, too. A father wouldn’t let his daughter get hurt. If holding you means hurting you, Dad can’t hold you… Don’t be angry, Daisy. Dad loves you; Dad truly loves you.”
I didn’t know if Daisy cold understand me or not, but Nier didn’t take Daisy. While Daisy continued reaching for Nier, she didn’t cry or make a scene. She just didn’t want to look at me. I didn’t force her to look at me. Instead, I continued holding her and gently rocking her. Nier gently clung to my arm. Although we weren’t next to a flower garden or the sunset and just in the main hall of the Imperial Palace – not to mention there being a maid who didn’t look pretty or show joy – I could feel the peace of gentleness, purely because Nier was next to me and Daisy was in my arms.
I didn’t have anything I wanted to chase anymore. I suddenly realised why I wanted the North back then. I wanted to protect the North solely because I wanted to give my family a blissful and safe home. I wanted to give my wives and children a cosy home. Of course, if it was possible, I wanted to bring my moms over, as well. I thought of it before all the recent events.
If the world was still divided in three, we three couldn’t be together. Vyvyan was the Queen of elves. I was the King of the North, and Elizabeth was the Empress of the Rosvenor Empire. The three of us could temporarily be together. In the end, nonetheless, we still had to take our own respective nations into consideration.
This world had to be united. At the very least, there should be an alliance. That way, the three of us could be in one city together and handle the political affairs without concern. We couldn’t do that in the North, the elven lands and absolutely not Hilles City, but we could make it work at Troy City. If possible, I wanted my moms to move there. We might not see each other daily, but, at least, we could see each other once in a while. Elizabeth and Vyvyan could also visit when they missed me or their grandchildren.
Additionally, Vera and Daisy would be separated if I couldn’t unite with the elves. I was destined to not succeed the throne at Hilles City or Mommy Vyvyan at Duargana. As such, the next Empress of humanity would be Daisy, who was currently in my arms. Mommy Elizabeth still had over a dozen years to nurture Daisy into the next qualified Empress, while Vera could definitely be nurtured into a qualified Queen for the elves. If that was how it played out, the two would be separated. I didn’t want the sisters to be separated. And I didn’t want my mom to never return…