I'm not at home, so I don't know the exact sequence....but from the back of my modem, the ethernet line hooks up to the router....then from the router, another ethernet line hooks directly to my computer. It's possible it goes to the computer first.....but I think it hooks up to the router first, then the desktop. There's no "out" from my computer back to the router though.
I thought it might be possible for my desktop to "talk" with the router thru the one, stand alone ethernet line. I don't know....hence, the post!
Next year is here!