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Avernus/Ser Thrask - Stand Up
The Knight-Commander had overstepped her bounds again, sending Thrask to Ferelden to investigate a maleficar. She had said the mage was too close to the Free Marches, too dangerous to be ignored, too powerful for the weaker Fereldan templars to handle. She had done it to get rid of him, he suspected. Thrask had accepted for his own reasons, surviving the sail across the Waking Sea and the march through the mountains by prayer and stubbornness.

Getting past the traders who'd made camp at the decaying castle had been difficult, his armor and joints creaking in the freezing wind. He'd found the mage, as tainted at Meredith had promised, but too smart, too human to be a true abomination. Avernus talked, Avernus reasoned, Thrask was tired, Thrask was cold. He drew his sword and cleansed the magic miasma from the room, but Avernus in Warden colors instead of a robe continued wielding his quill, ignoring the staff collecting dust in the shadows and Thrask's arm aching under the weight of his shield shivering in his armor.

That night Avernus lit candles and tossed Thrask a bottle that was more vinegar than wine. The mage didn't sleep but lay beside the templar with a wheezing laugh. In the morning, Thrask woke up and stood up alone, then walked past the surprised traders and back down to where a ship waited to take him home.

Cailan Theirin/Finn - no one else to turn to
"I don't know," Finn said as he pulled another robe from the cabinet. "I think this is a bad idea. And by bad, I mean terrible."

"Stop worrying. No, this one doesn't fit either." Cailan yanked the robe down his arms and tossed it into the rapidly growing pile on Finn's bed. "Maker's breath, you mages are almost pathetically puny. I don't see why the templars are so afraid of you."

Finn glared over his shoulder, but Cailan's smile softened the insult. Finn sniffed disdainfully; the man had no right to make unkind remarks when he needed Finn's help to impersonate a mage to play a trick on the visiting, unforgiving Mother Perpetua. He was also stripped down to his smalls, which should have made him feel at least a smidgen ridiculous.

Not that he looked ridiculous. In fact, he looked rather marvelous.

Mistaking Finn's silence for a sulk, Cailan clamped his massive hand on Finn's shoulder (possibly breaking a bone or to there; maybe he really was puny). "Come on, old boy. I didn't mean to offend. You're the only one I could turn to. Imagine if I'd asked your enchanter Wynne? Or that one who looks like he's swallowed a lemon... Torrin."

"Try this one," Finn mumbled as he flung another robe over Cailan's thick arm. The hand on his shoulder squeezed gently and Finn could feel the warmth of it through the thick velvet of his own robe.
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a jar of jae

November 2016

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