Chapter Seventeen - Conflict

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"This is becoming a habit" Duke told me as we sat on the Roman white couch in his study, his hands fixing the damage i'd inflicted upon my neck.

"The pain is a reminder of what's real" I mumbled, still revolted by the taste of blood in my own mouth.

Instead of giving me another zen conversation, he laughed, he actually laughed. I was having trouble getting used to this new Duke, the carefree teenage Duke.

"What?" I asked, confused.

"The irony of the disgust you feel for the taste of your own blood" He mused, shaking his head.

"I am still human you know" I told him, tilting an eyebrow.

"Apparently" He mumbled, sticking a gauze to my neck.

"What are we going to do about Darius?" I asked, just as Seth sauntered into the room.

"Woah what happened to you two?" He asked, taking in our wet bodies and our torn and tattered state. Duke still wasn't wearing a shirt "Wait, wait, i don't want to know.." He added, holding his hands up.

"I think you do. Darius threatened me, and Hugo attacked us" I quickly told him with a fake smile.

"Word travels fast" Seth sighed, walking to the sofa i was sitting on to sit beside me "And what about this? Hugo?" He asked, pointing to my neck.

"No actually, i did it" I told him, confident and somewhat proud.

"Er, why?" He asked, as Duke sighed and walked off into his room. Probably to get a shirt.

"Hugo staked Duke, i threatened him" I shrugged casually.

"Oh" Seth nodded slowly "On another note, i met your sister" He smirked.

"You did?" I asked.

"Yeah, she filled me in on all the witch stuff, no thanks to you" He sneered, picking wooden splinters from my hair.

"I forgot" I shrugged again causing him to roll his eyes. I sure missed Seth and his antics.

"Tell me about this Pete character" Seth asked, curious all of a sudden as he leaned towards me, eyes intent.

"Oh, i don't know him all that well. He's an only child, parents are out of the picture apparently, he seemed sweet, ordinary" I shrugged, trying to remember "When i think about it, he didn't really talk much about himself or where he's from"

"And what about this witch thing?" Seth asked as Duke returned, slump sweat shirt covering his beautiful body.

"He knew i was somehow involved when he noticed Riley and Jaymi watching him" I told Seth as Duke disappeared again through to the kitchen "Then when i 'took off' he knew and he threatened me"

"Damn witches" Seth grumbled, leaning back in the sofa "And damn you smell"

I crossed my eyebrows "Blood or Salt?" I asked.

"Both" He sneered. I thought he was good at controlling himself, turns out he wasn't as good as the others. He leaned as far away from me as he could, keeping his eyes trained on the wall in front of us.

"Sorry" I apologized, feeling stupid.

"I don't know how Duke does it" He mumbled, more to himself "I noticed the ring by the way, another thing you failed to inform me of" He spoke.

I looked down at my hand, and was surprised that it was still there after Duke and mine's day, swimming and getting mauled.

"Oh, yeah" I mumbled, fiddling with it around my finger "It's complicated" I told him, not wanting to go through it all.

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