He rolled his eyes and turned away from her. "I'm so sorry to disappoint you," he said, knowing he sounded like a humourless bastard, and wondering how she always got under his skin so quickly. He began to walk away, feeling the need to put some distance between them and had got to the end of the bridge before he realised she was walking beside him.
He stopped in his tracks, glaring at her and trying not to notice the slight breeze that was toying with her long blonde hair. It was loose today, held back from her face by two glittery pink clips. "Where do you think you're going?" he asked with a growing sense of anxiety.
Her cornflower blue eyes widened with such astonished innocence he almost laughed. The wretch. "For a walk," she said, blinking up at him. "Why?"
"Well, walk that way." He gestured in the direction of the old abbey and back where they had come from.
"I'll walk whichever way I choose, thank you," she said with a prim sniff, putting up her chin a little.
He suppressed the twitch that threatened to force his mouth from the grim line it had settled in with a heroic effort of will. "Fine." He turned around and headed back towards the abbey himself only to find her beside him once again. He gave a huff of frustration and stopped in the middle of the bridge once more. "You were walking that way," he said, pointing back across the bridge and willing himself to be patient. "Remember?"
She smiled at him, showing pearly white teeth. "I changed my mind," she said, adding, "Faolán."
He narrowed his eyes at her, remembering that he - or rather his grandfather - had given her his name earlier.
She leant back against the ancient grey stone, her bright blue summer dress fluttering in the breeze. She looked fresh and lovely and full of invitation. "I met your grandfather this morning," she said, looking smug.
Damn. He had handled this whole situation in completely the wrong manner. "Really," he replied, his voice absent of inflection, or interest.
"Uh, huh. That's an unusual name you've got there, Faolán," she said it again and he rolled his eyes.
"Don't call me that," he said, a strange feeling rolling over him at hearing his name on her lips. "No one calls me that," he added. No one was granted that kind of familiarity. Gods, even his mother called him by his title.
There was curiosity in her gaze once more, and something else. Was that concern? "Why not?" she asked, the frown drawing her blonde brows together.
"They just don't!" Feeling like he was losing control of the situation, he realised he needed to shake her off and fast. Without another word he turned away from her and back to walk along the bridge in the direction he had been going originally.
"What do they call you then?" she called after him.
"Mind your own bloody business!" he snapped in frustration. "Gods, but you're nosey."
"Wow," she said, deadpan, her eyebrows going up. "And I thought Faolán was a mouthful."
He stopped and opened his mouth but gave up and shook his head instead while she just stood there, grinning at him.
"Childish," he said with a huff.
She crossed her arms, her expression thoughtful. "Hmmm, still prefer Faolán."
"Oh, good gods, Dannon!" he yelled, before every last thread of sanity up and left him. "Everyone calls me Dannon."
She frowned at him. "Is that your last name?"
"No," he said, running a hand through his hair and refusing to give her anymore information.
YOU ARE READING
The Dark Deceit (The Dark Prince. Book 3)Paranormal
A dangerous secret lies at the heart of the Fae Lands. A secret that could save three kingdoms - or burn them all to the ground. The secret is Prince Corin's to bear alone, if his sanity can stand it. But while Corin suffers, his mother's machinati...