Desmond had really done a number on it. Somehow they'd gone from her politely asking if he was alright to him telling her about the fact that he had grown up in a prison cell. Why it was that he had opted to open his mouth and waggle his tongue he couldn't begin to fathom, but the look on her face as she heard the words more than clearly told him that he should have just kept his past to himself. It hurt, too, because he could remember the way that he had been looked at by someone who looked so very much like Beth, so many years ago. One thing was crystal clear though, it just wasn't working out, he needed to turn around, before he did something even more embarassing to the young girl, or got himself a reputation for being an idiot.
It was sad that reputations were important, but when you came to learn, at least where he was from, and had a reputation for being unable to, that meant that it was unlikely to find people who were willing to teach you. And at this point, one thing had become abundantly clear. He definitely needed to figure out a way to learn more about the culture now.
He felt her hand grab his glove, and winced slightly. She would feel cooled blood stick to her fingertips. Desmond closed his eyes for a moment, took in a slow breath, and looked out at the distance before quietly turning towards her. There were times in life that you had to pretend to be brave, even if inside you were filled with confusion and self doubt. Dancing around like an idiot wasn't really getting him anywhere now, and she seemed more intent on apologizing, when she really had nothing to apologize for, if anyone did, it was him. Sighing a little he reached into his coat, and took a breath to explain. "It's tears, not the blood of something else..." he said quietly, trying to reassure her.
"And no, I was not a slave until I was a young man. Before then I was something, much, much worse." Lightly taking her wrist in his hand he pulled out a hankerchief and tried to soak up the blood from her hand, frowning a little as it still left the fingertips stained with thick blood. Staring into her eyes without saying a word he slowly brought her fingertips to his lips and then enveloped them between his lips, a surprisingly warm wet sensation flooding over the tips of her fingers as he lightly suckled the blood off of them. She was a mortal, and if curiousity got the better of her, she would likely find his blood not only intoxicating, but potentially addictive as well. It was certainly not what he wanted for her.
But beyond that, it was a calculated change. The eastern martial arts dealing with internal systems damage had such philosophies. His bashful nature was simply drawing her in, and so stepping away from her would simply inspire the chase, her to come closer, to come after him. When a soft style did not work, a more aggressive one was needed to counteract it. With any luck, a more forward approach would cause her to flutter back, and by that way he could leave her be, keep her innocence and purity in tact, and still not directly hurt her. It was a somewhat twisted game that wrenched at his insides as he played it, but then, it was not the first time he had done something against his nature to protect another.
Letting her fingertips fall from his lips he stepped in quietly and brought a leather gloved hand up to her cheek. He was close enough now that she would feel her chest brush against his own as she breathed, and he tilted her head up to look at him quietly as he stroked her cheek. Flawless pale blue eyes like solid winter ice stared at her as he spoke softly to her. Mortal as he was, there would be no mental command to it, but something told him that this close to her now, there really didn't need to be.
"Don't ask what happened before I was a slave, please." he beseeched her softly.