His Royal Highness, Prince of Italy
How poignant that scent was that clung to William as the Dark Hunter darkened the threshold of his office. He could see those crimson stains on his childhood companion's loose-fitting clothing. He seemed but a shell of the man that Sebastian remembered, a glimpse of concern fluttered across the vampire's features as he inquired softly if William was okay. Truly, the answer should have been blatantly obvious, and yet, Sebastian was unsure of any other way to breach the topic of the Hunter's appearance politely. He watched as William approached his desk, only to sink into the depths of a plush leather chair in clear exhaustion. Sebastian was well aware of that tremor that seemed to send those once steady hands shaking, just as he was aware of the fluttering beat of William's heart, the sound near resounding for him in the otherwise quiet office. That usual eloquence to the Duke's speech had become...broken and erratic and yet, it merely left Sebastian with more questions than answers. The vampire remained rooted to his spot, however, hardly trusting himself when already that hunger was beginning to stir deep within him. Those quickly darkening irises searched his friend's figure for some sort of understanding and yet, how easy was it to see that William was struggling with an overwhelming myriad of thoughts.
Abruptly, William rose to his feet, the Duke clearly focusing entirely upon that promise they had made several years ago. Although Sebastian had certainly not forgotten those words they had exchanged, he had hardly been surprised when William had merely disappeared. After all, the Hunter had visited the halls of Sebastian's home with ever-decreasing frequency and Sebastian had certainly not been oblivious to the scent of a woman that had lingered upon his best friend during those times the Hunter had returned. He had, in turn, simply assumed that William had decided to pursue her with remarkable enthusiasm. Had he known the truth of it...had he any suspicion that William's past had caught up to him...Sebastian would have done far more than sit idly by. A small, soft, reassuring simper crossed his features as he finally stepped forward, tenderly reaching for those trembling hands. He noticed that subtle flinch, even if his childhood friend stilled at his approach and, in turn, Sebastian hardly acknowledged the reaction even as he took those bloodied fingers within his cool palm.
The very sensation of that blood against his otherwise pristine fingers immediately drew the vampire's attention though he strove diligently to turn his gaze upwards and towards his friend. That soft inquiry of William's permanent return, however, hardly provoked a truly reassuring answer within his companion. That carefully questioned pitch caused Sebastian's eyebrow to rise ever so slightly. "You...hope?" He queried, that discontent once again dancing across his features as his lips pressed together. As much as he would have liked to further press the man for answers, there were...certain matters that needed to be attended to. The Englishman rose their hands, his tongue flickering over his lips as he commented on just how...distracting the presence so much blood. God, how it made him hungry. How he yearned to steal just a taste. Sebastian diligently forced himself to concentrate at the sound of William's exhausted voice. That hint of a tease fell decidedly flat when accompanied by his companion's exhaustion and softly, Sebastian allowed that baritone chuckle to leave his lips, the Englishman as pleasant as he ever was. "I think you might too," Sebastian admitted, after all, if the pounding of William's heart was anything to go by, the blood that coated his skin was certainly not just that of his captors.
Sebastian's head bobbed ever so slightly at the mention of a shower and clothes. These were certainly within his capabilities to fix. "Of course," Sebastian responded promptly, only to continue with the insistence that he also desired to know exactly what had happened. After all, the Italian Monarchy still held some sway with the Hunter Council, surely he might be able to push lightly on the organization if only to ensure his companion's welfare, as selfish as such a desire might ultimately have been. He was entirely aware of William's sudden attention at any suggestion to intervene on his friend's behalf, the Duke quickly shutting down the very notion. Silently, Sebastian listened to every word that left his companion's lips. Those centuries he'd spent as a mere Lord almost demanding that he allow William to voice every word without interruption, even if the balance of power between the two men had shifted drastically since then.
Slowly, the Englishman nodded again in agreement, "This way." He offered, gesturing back towards the office door. It was only once he was certain William was following him that the Prince led the way out of his office, passing by his husband's closed office door before stepping foot into the lavish suite of their bedroom. He led William towards the spotless marbled bathroom, gesturing briefly inside even though he knew well his companion knew the layout of his home. There were, of course, certain distinct subtle differences between then and now - from his lover's collection of toiletries sitting neatly on by one of the two sinks in the bathroom to the lavish paintings that now adorned the walls of the home. "Leave your clothes on the floor, I'll have Charles fetch them and clean everything later, I'll find something new for you while you shower." Sebastian offered, stepping back as William entered the room. For now, he was willing to leave his friend to undress by himself, the vampire far more focused upon the task of finding something that would suit the Duke. His fingers moved deftly through his own wardrobe, searching with diligence for something he might own that he knew would fall within the realm of William's likes.