8. The Former Governor
As I waited for His Highness Alexander to hug me, I became nervous.
I, cornered against the wall, couldn’t escape from him.
His Highness Alexander seemed different than usual—probably because I told him to embrace me. His serious countenance impressed, and at the same time, intimidated me a little.
I unintentionally closed my eyes. I regretted that fact a little. I didn’t know what His Highness was going to do, and I also couldn’t see his expression.
Inside that dimly lit warehouse, what kind of expression was His Highness making?
I felt truly curious.
I could just open my eyes and stare directly at His Highness’ face, but that was… exactly the problem.
I couldn’t do it because I was too embarrassed.
His Highness gently placed his hands on my shoulders.
He… he is finally going to hug me…
The pounding of my heart grew even louder.
I waited as it was.
Despite that, His Highness’ hands didn’t move.
I anxiously opened my eyes.
His Highness’ face was extremely close to me. I was truly surprised. However, his cheeks were bright red. His hands were stuck on my shoulders.
T, this pose…
It was as if His Highness was trying to encourage me, or something… any moment, now, I could picture him yelling, ‘Do your best!’ No matter how much I thought about it, it couldn’t be called a hug.
When I called, His Highness’ eyes wavered.
Thus, I proceeded to ask him.
“Uh… I don’t think this action can be considered as a hug…”
“Don’t you think so, too?”
I was expecting him to hug me by encircling his arms around my back and hip.
Not to mention, previously, His Highness even confirmed whether or not I was alright with his actions… He approached me with such a serious expression, too…
To think that he’d stop at putting his hands on my shoulders…
His Highness and I stared at each other as we were. His Highness casted his blue eyes downward.
“…It’s just, the moment I touched your shoulders, I was suddenly overcome with embarrassment.”
“I, I see…”
“I mean, if I hug you, won’t I be in a close contact with you!?”
…Isn’t that natural?
However, I couldn’t help but also feel embarrassed when His Highness was being self-conscious…
…I had also become conscious of how warm the big hands that His Highness put on my shoulders felt. If His Highness so wanted it, he could embrace me and do anything, I’d surely accept him.
Regardless, in reality, His Highness just lightly put his hands on my shoulders. His Highness, with his red cheeks and being at a loss… what a beloved sight that was!
I deliberately puffed my cheeks.
“But you said that you’d do anything!”
“I, I’m sorry…”
I smiled when I saw His Highness repenting.
If the other party were his younger brother, Mikhail, he might have seized the opportunity to not only hug me, but also kiss me.
But I… I had always liked how kind His Highness Alexander was, someone who’d turn shy just by touching my shoulders.
Hence, I chose him back then.
…However, it’d be a waste to just let go of His Highness as he was.
“Your Highness, you don’t have to hug me, but please caress my shoulder a little.”
“Just like when you patted my head. This is a substitute for hugging, or do you not want to?”
“If, if it’s only that then I can!”
When I said that, the blushing His Highness patted my shoulder with terrifying awkwardness.
The feel of His Highness’ hands was lightly transmitted from the sleeves of his clothes. What a fluffy, gentle, touch that was.
It was as if he was handling a delicate jewel. It’d be alright if he were to add some more force, but the warmth of His Highness’ hands already sufficed to reassure me.
Looking at His Highness, who stood before me, I thought—
—If he was too shy to do it, should I be the one to hug him instead?
His Highness was defenseless right in front of me, after all. He was distracted by his own action, which was patting my shoulder.
Given our height difference, if I were to reach out to His Highness, I would be able encircle my arms around his waist. That would be the perfect hug…
After deeply contemplating that, I became self-conscious, and my cheeks grew hot.
Like His Highness, I was too embarrassed to hug him. That I could even come up with the idea to do that in the first place was crazy.
…Also, what if he didn’t reciprocate the gesture?
…That wouldn’t be good, but if he couldn’t do it, then I should do it.
With courage, I could take a step forward.
I took a deep breath and tried to embrace His Highness’ waist.
At that time, there was a rattling noise.
We were both surprised, and when I looked at the other side of the shelf, there was a small boy with a terrified face.
It seemed that he had bumped against the shelf, causing something to fall onto the floor. The noise announced his presence to us.
The child, who even today was perfectly donned in a butler outfit, laughed.
It was none other than Felix.
…I missed my chance to hug His Highness!
When I thought about that, I felt disappointed. But soon, I realized something more important…
Standing behind Felix was a man dressed in a gorgeous bureaucratic uniform.
Given the number of gold buttons on his lapel, he must be a senior official of the fourth division.
In that land, there was only one such great bureaucrat.
Felix cheerfully said—
“—This is the former governor, His Excellency Trepov!”
***T/N: Hello. My name is Translator. You killed my fluff moment. Prepare to die.