The Prince had become accustomed to lingering at his lover's side over the years of their marriage, enough so that he thought distinctly little of how peculiar it was to leave William's side in favor of the Italian Monarch's. That very spot, after all, had become his right by his elevation in rank. This introduction was of distinct importance to the Englishman, one he hoped feverishly would go well as he fell back into those age old customs - even if he had shortened both men's titles for brevity. He watched with vague approval as William dipped into a courtly bow, his childhood friend appeared nothing if not the epitome of politeness, even if Sebastian knew, in the wake of William's confession, how terribly uncomfortable this meeting surely made the Duke. What Sebastian was not prepared for, however, was the sudden coolness to his lover's usually warm tone. Those exchanged pleasantries were little more than mere formalities, even despite the Englishman's best attempt to ensure they went as well as possible. Sebastian was oblivious of how his own features betrayed that hint of anxiety that gripped the Englishman's heart, one that he could nearly hear mirrored within William himself as the Dark Hunter's heart beat with the same quickness it had nearly all night long.
His gaze deviated towards his husband as Dorian inquired after how long William intended to stay. The veiled meaning behind those words was certainly not lost upon the Prince. A soft breath left his lips, Sebastian was well aware his answer would only further whatever displeasure afflicted his King. His explanation was, albeit brief as he informed his husband of William's kidnapping and the time the Dark Hunter had spent beneath the unwanted care of his fellow species. Those reasons why were purposefully left out as Sebastian so delicately strove to appeal to his love's sense of empathy, even if he hardly understood what had prompted Dorian to be so...disgruntled. His gaze deviated briefly from Dorian as William added in his own addendum, informing the fae that he had only just escaped his capture. His head bobbed in agreement of his friend's words as he continued to voice the offer that he had given, and the one William had accepted in turn, even if it required a...favor...of sorts, from his husband. For a brief moment, the vampire dared to hope that woeful tale might be enough to thaw the iciness that seemed to exude from the Monarch, until that look of surprise dissipated into a hard frown.
The silence thereafter was nearly all encompassing for the Englishman, prompting him to shift uncomfortably upon his feet as he watched Dorian's gaze shift from himself to William and back again. It was not...often that the Italian Prince took the initiative as far as their staff went - a vast majority of their staff had come from Dorian's own palaces, aside from Charles and Elizabeth. He had not thought that Dorian might be so...irritated at him for extending an employment opportunity to William without his lover's prior permission. Clearly...he had been mistaken. A small frown crossed the vampire's features as he waited in silence for the fae's judgement, his hands shifted to clasp behind his back. That slight shake of Dorian's head only confirmed the fae's discontent and yet, Sebastian could hardly help the surprise that crossed his features both at the tone in his lover's voice and the words that left his lover's lips. He was aware, vaguely, that he was hardly the only one who stared at the fae Monarch. Sebastian's lips parted ever so slightly, the dark blue of his gaze shifted between his childhood companion and his lover. There was, he knew, no mistaking that very tone his husband utilized, those conditions were not points the fae was willing to compromise on. How...utterly helpless he felt, to listen to that promise he'd made William become stripped away to something else entirely.
"Dorian, I --" Whatever words Sebastian had intended to speak, however, were interrupted by a firm British lit. William's done was one he too knew well, even if he had not heard the Duke speak with the authority of his own position in a great amount of time. Still, it was the sound of a man who was used to getting his way, a man who had forgotten he was speaking to a King. He was hardly prepared, however, for the social faux pas that William committed, so freely utilizing his lover's name without yet being invited to such a level of...familiarity! Was he trying to offend Dorian now?! "William!" That chiding tone, however, was near pointless as William soldiered on regardless, the weight of those dark brown eyes falling upon him. He should have been prepared for the worst, really, considering how poorly this meeting seemed destined to go and yet, even Sebastian was uncertain if his childhood friend realized exactly what he was saying, much less the position he was placing Sebastian within. After all, William had only just sworn fealty to him - one, that by his position as heir to the Italian crown, was sworn to Dorian himself. William was not only committing treason to the very oath he'd just sworn but also beseeching Sebastian to do the very same. As if he could go against the commands of his King! Much less his own husband! A soft breath left the Englishman's lips as his gaze deviated away from both men. This...right here, this very position he had been placed within was not what he had wanted. William insisted that he wasn't asking him to choose between the two of them and yet....could his friend not see that was exactly what he was doing?
The dark blue of his gaze fluttered back towards William before his head shook ever so slightly. "No, it is not what I want but I am beholden to the Italian throne and to my King. You will still find safety at our gates. They are never guarded by a singular guard alone and they are still on Italian grounds. Dorian's grandfather can assist you with your powers and you will remain untouched while you're in his care. I..." His voice wavered, as he glanced away from the pair, that English lit somehow softer, "I am sorry William...but it....it is the best I can offer you. Take some time to think it over, I'll have Charles ring the head of our security, you can stay in their apartments for the night while you...make your decision."
His Royal Highness, Prince of Italy