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You are exactly describing the way AxCrypt is intended to work.
It’s by careful design – if you never had to sign on again, it would not be secure enough. Many on the contrary have concerns about the fact that you don’t have to sign in for every file. As it’s designed, you have to sign in after the screen saver has been activated, the computer has gone to sleepetc.
About “the first time” I think you are referring to the fact that Internet is required the very first time you install and run AxCrypt on a new computer, but not thereafter.