Dunstan shifted in his seat. He wasn’t sure how they’d ended up on this topic all of a sudden. He never liked talking about his family, even with Reza. “The truth is, sir... I ran away from home when I was fifteen.”
“I see. And why did you run away?”
He hesitated again, impulsively pulling his eyes away from the battlefield in order to glance at Miles. A mistake, Dunstan immediately knew. Miles didn’t seem to notice or care, but Dunstan was kicking himself for his unprofessionalism as he refocused on observing.
It was odd, though. Like a faint pressure in his chest. And around his head. His whole body, even. And as much as he would have preferred not to answer that question, remaining silent seemed somehow untenable, nor could he come up with an appropriate lie in time. “My family is full of criminals. If I didn’t leave, I probably would’ve ended up like them.”
“And your reaper didn’t have a problem with that?”
“I didn’t meet her until I was seventeen. She doesn’t have any ties to my family. I doubt they even know reapers exist.”
“I wouldn’t be too certain of that.”
Dunstan’s gaze flickered again, and he had to concentrate in order to keep his eyes where they needed to be. “What do you mean, sir?”
But instead of answering, Cpt. General Miles chose to ask a different question. “Where was your family living when you left?”
And there it was again--that unexplained pressure, pushing him onward, compelling him to speak. “Dante. I think we had some cousins in Atreya, too. Why?”
“What is your grandfather’s name?”
“Damian. Why, sir?”
“Ha. No reason.”
“Sir, please stop being so mysterious. Do you know my grandfather?”
“I don’t know anyone named Damian Rofal, no.”
“But you do remind me of someone I once knew. You have the same eyebrows he had.”
‘Same eyes, chin, and hair color, too,’ added Overra.
“It’s really the eyebrows, though,” said Miles. “Very distinctive, those things. You could probably pull them off your face and use them as weapons.”
‘They’re like angry boomerangs,’ said Overra.
Dunstan tried to take that as a compliment. “Apart from his name, I don’t remember much else about my grandfather. He only visited a few times when I was a child. I don’t think he got along well with my parents.”