jaebility: (da // yeeaaah)
The news of you Lord Dorian's betrothal collapse - and thus social collapse as well - moved at the speed of wildfire through the Minrathous elite; and like a fire it was destructive, laying to ruin no only Lord Dorian's reputation, but that of his long suffering parents, Lord and Lady Pavus.

Far from sharing their devastation, Dorian was in a mood that some who saw him at his club described as delighted.

In fact, Lord D-- commented to Lord C--, in a voice he didn't attempt to lower, "No honest lady in Tevinter will have him now." And later, discussing the moment with friends over whiskey, both men were positive that Dorian chortled into his drink.

There was no recourse but to leave the city. Unfashionably early the Pavuses made haste for Qarinus, where Dorian promptly left the Pavus summer estate to spend far too much time (and allowance) in the taverns in town. His parents sequestered themselves in the library and with a health libation of Antivan wine, discussed their dwindling options. Lists of names were drawn, argued over, tossed into the fireplace. Copies of family histories were piled into unstable towers. upper and then dinner were ignored, to the consternation of the kitchen staff.

Orlais was out of the question. Antiva was a possibility, though one that made both their aristocratic noses turn up. Nevarra had been exhausted. Ferelden was not even mentioned. The Free Marches, they finally accepted with unhappy sighs. If Dorian's marriage situation had not been dire, they wouldn't have considered it, but the burden of children is the lot of any parent, and the Pavus were determined to shoulder it, at least until they could unload it onto his wife.
jaebility: (Default)
just a drabble i'm working on.


"It's a wild goose chase - that's what you southerners say, yet?" Dorian strolled through the library - small - with his fingers trailing lightly on the books as he read their spines. "I can hardly expect that you'd have even a censored copy of what I need."

"So why did you come?"

Dorian glanced over his shoulder at the other boy, who was following a polite distance behind him. "Well, to be honest, I think half the reason was just so Father could get me out of his hair for a season. Might be more than half the reason."

"Did you get in trouble?"

He barked a laugh and the other boy's eyebrows raised in surprised. "You could say that. In any event, down here I'll be safe from temptation. Oh, is that Rine Valente? ...No, of course not."

"Temptation?"

The other boy had ventured a little closer. Dorian hadn't gotten much of a look at him before, but now he studied him with mild curiosity. Mylas, that had been his name. He was probably around fourteen, though Dorian couldn't pinpoint his exact age: with his height he looked older, but those earnest expressions seemed so young, like Mylas was a child at the window of a candy shop. His red hair and pale complexion somehow seemed childish too - Freckles, for Andraste's sake, and not a trace of cosmetics. Mylas was probably dying to hear about blood magic ceremonies or maybe even orgies, or whatever other scary stories the Chantry sisters told the apprentices at night. Dorian wondered what the apprentice would say if he told him about his father finding the letter he'd been writing to Cero. "Anyway, don't worry. I won't corrupt you. I hereby promise not to cavort, challenge, or summon any demons while I'm hear. Maker knows with all your templars, I wouldn't get very far in that regard anyway. Maybe that's why they even let me through the door? Or does Ostwick usually play host to big bad mages from Tevinter?"

It was Mylas' turn to laugh, and it was more like a quiet snort. "I'm too boring to corrupt."

"Hm?" A second edition of Scrying Secrets by Colerus, not a bad find.

"That's what everyone says, and I suppose that's what First Enchanter Lydia thinks, too. I don't do... anything at all, really."

Dorian turned again. Mylas' long arms were dangling helpless at his sides. He was staring out the window, worrying at his lower lip.

"So you hunger for forbidden fruits, do you?" It sounded iodiotic even as he said it, and maybe even a little desperate, but Dorian couldn't stop the words from slipping out. He covered p his discomfort with another laugh. "Well, we'll see what happens over the next few days."

Mylas' face brightened and he smiled, wide and easy. "You'll let me be your guide, then?"

He had been rude about that, hadn't he? Dorian regretted the outburst - he shouldn't have hurt the boy's feelings, even if Dorian's ire had been directed at another target. "Well I promised the First Enchanter. And a Pavus is true to his word."
jaebility: (da // characters)
Despite my real life discontent, I am happy about the new DAI dlc! Where the hell did this come from? It's timely, that's for sure - Yesterday morning the Dude and I were discussing the possibility of dlc, and how I was saving my days off for a dlc release. Welp, looks like I'll be calling in sick.

I still need to get a handle on my m!Trevelyan. My f!Cadash and f!Trevelyan are so straight forward - I love crafting/writing/watching heroic women, so I got their characters down pretty well. My m!Hawke was easy, too, because he's such a failure of a hero. A good person, definitely, and a hell of a fighter, but in terms of accomplishment? Especially compared to my two f!Wardens....? That's what I like about Hawke - about purple!Hawke, in particular, who seems to understand just how fast things spiral out of his control.

So yeah, anyway, my m!Trevelyan doesn't have my female characters general kick-ass-ness, nor Hawke's charisma. And when he loses his faith, he loses his sense of self. I don't think it helps that Dorian can end up with Bull - it makes that relationship seem more, I don't know, tenuous? Especially since Dorian is hell-bent on leaving for Tevinter. I miss Anders' burning desire for you, or Alistair's devotion, or Leliana's trust.
jaebility: (da // characters)
Hawke lay on his back on the bed, arms crossed behind his head and eyes closed. He hummed to himself, quietly enough that he could hear Anders as his lover moved around their small room. “Anders come to me,” he sang to the tune of a song he’d heard at Skyhold. “Anders come to me. Anders come to see, can’t you, can’t you come to see. That I love you.”

Anders exhaled a long sigh, blowing unruly strands of hair out of his face. The tightness in his chest didn’t abate, but after a moment he chuckled and put down his quill. “You’re in a good mood tonight,” he said in a light, teasing tone as he obeyed. Hawke slid over to make room and Anders sat beside him, then laughed again when Hawke pulled him into an embrace. Hawke had been back from Orlais for a week, but he clung to Anders with the same ferocity that he had on the night that he’d returned.

Hawke kissed his neck, the scruff on his chin scratching pleasantly against Anders’ throat. He distracted them both with that for a bit before he finally said, “You don’t know how much I missed you. Damn Wardens, damn Inquisition. I hereby resign from giving a shit about any of them.”

“What about Varric?”

“I’ll go rescue him at some point.”

The night went by too fast. Anders barely slept at all, but the insomnia wasn’t unwelcome. Instead of sleeping, he pressed against Hawke’s long back and traced his tired fingers over the scars on Hawke’s stomach, then over Hawke’s hip, thigh. After all their years together he knew each curve by heart, but he lingered over them anyway, IMPORTING? each inch of skin to memory.

But he couldn’t do it forever. Gingerly Anders slipped out of bed, but Hawke still rustled the blankets, stirring and murmuring in his sleep. Anders paused with a breath burning in his lungs, waiting and perversely hoping that Hawke would wake, but the other man rolled over instead, filling the spot that Anders had left. Outside their rickety cottage the sun began a slow creep over the horizon and weak light made it through the clouds - If he was going to leave, it had to be soon.

The letter was written, his bag packed. There was a final step that made Anders ache to think about, but he made himself do it. He stood over Hawke and with trembling fingers, cast the spell: sleep. Then before his heart broke, Anders closed the door behind him and started walking south.
jaebility: (nature // maple)
As the second son, Mylas is free from the responsibilities that his older brother has heaped on his shoulders. And the glories too, but Mylas is ten and doesn’t care about girls or parties or hunting. He likes his brother’s stallion and like his brother’s armor - both things are much too big for him - but the rest Mylas happily leaves behind to play out in the woods with his sister or his friends.

But then Rience dies and all the family’s hope rise up with the smoke from RIence funeral pyre. After the mourning period finishes, Mylas’ routine is drastically changed. No more classes with his sister and their governess: he inherits his brother’s tutor along with Rience’s sword, his social connections, and duties. Mylas isn't forbidden from running around with his friends, not exactly, but there’s no time for it any more. His toys and books aren't taken from him, not really, but his shelves need to be cleared for scrolls on lineages, masks he’ll wear, and armor pieces he’ll need to grow into.

His parents are relieved that he’s a decent looking boy, and compliant enough that he doesn’t need to be whipped to obey. Mylas is quiet, but that isn’t the same as docile, and at night when the family and the servants retire, the boy climbs out of his window and throws rocks across the pond or aims for branches, knocking down unripe apples which he then also throws - at the house, at the barn, down into the street.

It goes on for two years. He grows taller, and at twelve is the same height his brother was at that age. When his parents pay attention to him, they’re pleased. At that aspect anyway - Mylas doesn’t have his brother’s biting wit that made the Trevelyans so fun at parties. Rience had been aggressive, even at twelve; Mylas prefers to reach compromises, talking his way out of fights where his brother would have dominated.

It goes on for two years. Mylas goes on for two years, smiling and nodding and holding his breath when his parents enter the room. It’s because of that control that it takes so long - He’s twelve when he cracks at last. Three other children - older than him, too tall to be children, really - corner him at a neighbor’s estate. He’s pressed against the wall while they jeer for him to duel Ser Erec, and he’s trying to explain that he’s only had a year of sword lessons and can’t possibly do it, and what if someone gets hurt? And they keep pressing and the stone wall is hard and cold on his back and the sword they’re shoving at him slices into his vest and his parents will be furious and -

Mylas shouts as he grabs the blade to shove it away. In his hand the metal freezes and the girl holding it yelps as she drops it. It’s covered in ice and so is her hand - She falls to her knees in pain and surprise while her two friends scramble away. The rest happens so quickly that he never has a chance to apologize and even if he did have a moment to breath and talk, he wouldn’t be able to explain.

Not that it requires much explanation: he’s a mage and that has ruined everything.

Mylas is grabbed by an adult, passed off to a guard, passed off to a templar. He’s allowed to return home to pack because he’s a Trevelyan, but he has two templars with him, watching as servants jam clothes into a trunk for him and his parents and sister stand with frozen expressions by his bedroom door. The templars march him to the Circle, Mylas slouching and red-eyed between them.
jaebility: (da // annnnders)
MINOR SPOILERS!

When the Inquisitor judges Samson, his justice is merciful and he doesn’t heed the calls for blood. Cullen turns to ice when Samson turns to him. The Inquisitor has spoken: there is to be no death but a natural one, no pain beyond what life provides. Samson, fallen, fugitive, a human face in an unnatural war, is given to Cullen. A bleeding, burning reward for Cullen’s faithful service.

Not all the scarlet is gone, but Samson no longer crackles with or from the red lyrium. He’s dull without it, and within days of his imprisonment, Cullen has learned all he can from Samson. Empty of his secrets, Samson waits in his cell, a danger no longer. Though he still gives Cullen nightmares that leave the commander sweating and gasping out of sleep.

Cullen’s patience is not the same as the Inquisitor’s. Cullen’s is learned, practiced, beaten into him through repetition and structure. Cullen holds back, swallows hard, commands himself into calm. And so it’s the Inquisitor who comes to Samson when it’s clear that the templar is finally dying, and Cullen flattens himself against a wall in the prison when the Inquisitor and Samson speak the Chant together, their voices low and slow.

But Cullen isn’t cruel, and when Samson asks, Cullen brings the request to the advisers instead of immediately dismissing it. “He wants to see the sky again,” he tells them, and then adds in a heavy voice, “I don’t think he has much time left.”

"No," says Cassandra immediately, but she turns to the Inquisitor despite her proclamation.

"Are you all right?" he asks gently, because everything about him is kind, even regarding death.

"Yes," says Cullen, and that’s his answer.

So at dawn, when the courtyard is almost empty, Cullen escorts Samson to the gates. The templar walks on his own until they get to the bridge and then, when Cullen unlatches the unnecessary shackles, Samson stumbles. Cullen pulls him up on his shoulder - their faces are close enough that Cullen inhales warm air from Samson’s breath. It’s an arduous journey away from Skyhold and as soon as the keep disappears behind the clouds and mountains, Cullen releases his grip on Samson’s thin waist.

Instead of dropping to the ground, Samson clings to Cullen’s armor, weak and sliding down, until Cullen has no choice but to rearrange their arms to hold him again. “Please,” Samson begs, “let me just touch -“

His cold fingers tentatively trace Cullen’s jaw (clenched), then his lips (pressed), then his eyes (squeezed shut). When he kisses Cullen, out of surprise Cullen nearly drops him. Samson’s mouth is hot and his lips are dry, and Cullen tries to twist away. Before he can, Samson drags his tongue over the scar on Cullen’s mouth to capture another taste.

"Lyrium," Cullen says dully, realizing what Samson is desperately searching for. "I don’t-"

"Shut up." Samson’s hiss is as sharp as the wind. "You don’t understand. You never did. You could have been - We could been -"

Samson shivers so hard that his body quakes, and Cullen tightens his hold to prevent the templar’s body from shaking apart. He lowers himself to the ground, pulling Samson gently along with him, then lets the man tuck himself under Cullen’s chin.

To kiss Cullen’s neck, scrape his teeth over Cullen’s throat. Samson’s fingers work themselves into Cullen’s hair and quiver there against Cullen’s scalp. Cullen allows him these trespasses and then more that he closes his eyes against. But when the sun moves behind a snowy peak and their surroundings grow colder in the shadow, Cullen stops him - stops it - and hauls them both to their feet.

"Leave me here." Samson tries to laugh, but the sound is weak and the wind steals it from his mouth. "Save yourself the trouble."

Cullen shakes his head. “I have my orders,” he says and forces them to march back through the snow that is so white in the morning sun that it burns their weary eyes.
jaebility: (da //  alistair <3)
Title: Magophony
Fandom: Dragon Age 2
Rating: PG13ish
Warnings: Not-particular-graphic violence, slavery
Author's note: This was my entry for [profile] dragonagebb. It could have used a beta, but I procrastinated like mad and barely got it in on time as it is.

Link to AO3
jaebility: (da // hawkward)
The first time Anders pulls the tie out of his hair and runs his hands through it, Varric watches Hawke fall in love. Or maybe there was a spell in his quick hand movements, what did a dwarf know about the methods of mages? (He liked the alliteration of that, methods of mages, and tucked it away for later use. Maybe he’d even add a couple of other words, string the repetition out a little more.)

So, there is Hawke, staring with all the attention of his animal namesake. (Varric considered making a joke about if Leandra had married into the Nugs, decided against it - it was too low brow.) Staring until Carver elbows him and the two brothers turned away together, Carver frowning and Tristan grinning again. He bends down to sling his arm over Varric’s shoulder and says, “Nothing like a walk on the beach, eh, Varric?”

"If you consider the Wounded Coast a beach, then sure."

"Damn good idea you had, taking this job." Hawke says and glances over his shoulder. Anders has pulled his hair back up but Hawke still has mesmerized look in his eyes.

It would make for an interesting story. Who doesn’t love a tale of forbidden romance, of danger and strife? The book practically wrote itself. Not a book, Varric corrects himself. A serial. Draw it out, more opportunity for readership. He grins back up and says with an easy shrug, “Stick with me, Hawke. We’ll write this adventure together.”

Carver snorts and Anders appears over Hawke’s shoulder, asking what adventure? and had anyone seen the path recently? and Varric figures that between them and the pirate and the two elves, he’ll have enough material to work with for years to come.
jaebility: (da // characters)
Title: Heister
Fandom: Dragon Age 2
Rating: PG14ish for nongraphic sex
Warnings: Nope
Author's note: Charade is left alone when her mother dies. With the last coins from her mother sewn into her skirts, Charade goes after the illusive Keroshek, the gem that her father wasted his fortune on finding. Intended to be a response to the Women of Dragon Age Fandom Challenge, but missed the deadline.

Hesiter @ AO3
jaebility: (random // knt sky)
Charade became a courier before she could read. She excelled at it - not because a child couldn't have secrets, but because she couldn't be coerced into divulging them. Mara had always called her a stubborn child, a superlative her mother had always said like a compliment and not a criticism. Charade was stubborn and was good at dodging, at denying, and at flat-out lying. By the time she was twelve she had a reputation in the darkness of Val Royeaux's back alleys. L'ombre, they called her. Shadow.

Charade kept secrets, hoarding them like the nobles did gold. And she didn't need one of the ornate masks that the upperclass wore to hide her face. Hardly anyone noticed a thin, street-dusty girl anyway, and with her quickness they didn't have to see more than a flicker of cloth before she turned a corner.

As she learned to decipher the thin loops and swirls of the written word, she sometimes opened letters. Only the poorly sealed ones, those she could close up again without the recipient knowing. it didn't take long for her to realize that were really only three types of letters: I love you, I hate you, I'll kill you. Variations, of course, or funny combinations. She liked to imagine what happened after they were read, if the words ever came true. After dropping off a particularly amusing one, Charade bought an only somewhat bruised apple from her earnings and sat on a nearby staircase and decided that she'd never be mad over anyone like that. Never ever.

Letters didn't get delivered directly to the target, but to sympathetic butlers and maids in on the conspiracy. Charade never entered through the front doors, and instead slipped into kitchens or cellars like the servants. As she grew older, she spent more time with the kitchen girls and serving boys, flirting for gifts of wine and pastries with cream so light it seemed to float off the dough. She brought these gains back to her mother, who never asked where or how.

DA meme

Mar. 27th, 2012 03:19 pm
jaebility: (sm // u&n smex)
15. Your favorite “Bro”
VARRIC

The rest of the questions )
jaebility: (beatles // carn't)
14. Character you wish was a romance option
I wish all the romancable characters from DA:O swung both ways and I wish all the party members from DA:O-A could be wooed. And Varric. And Wynne.

I've said it before - Bioware creates incredible characters. There have been points where I fall in love with NPCs who appear in the story in minor roles: Samson, Silas, Charade, Dagna, Teagan. No matter how brief their moments on screen are, they seem so real, like they really have lives of their own to return to.

The rest of the questions )
jaebility: (da //  alistair <3)
13. Mages or Templars?
Mages, no question. While the Templar/mage relationship may have started with the best intentions and possibly even worked at some time, but the time we see the Circles in DA and DA2, it's clear that they function as prisons.

The rest of the questions )
jaebility: (sm // kingdom)
Veld kicked the blanket off in his sleep and Charade grumbled as she pulled it back up from the floor, wrapping it around her shoulders before pressing against Veld's back. She could feel a headache thorbbing behind her eyes - too much wine with dinner - and buried herself deeper in the nest of pillows and sheets, blocking out the sunlight that was making its way gamely through the room's shadows.

When she got up she stumbled through a pile of their clothes, wadded up in clumps where they're thrown them off the night before. She kicked one of Veld's boots off her skirt and dusted it off before yanking it over her legs.

"Oi, where you off to?"

Veld propped himself on one elbow. His eyes were as red as his hair, which was standing up like he'd been struck by lightning, and Charade wondered again why she bothered with him at all. Mornings were for regretting the night before, she thought as she adjusted the skirt around her hips. Maker she needed a drink.

"Well?"

"Winger wants us all back. Someone's been taking out the gang; we need to re-group." She found her shirt under her boot and pulled it free, flapping it clean. Cleaner, at least, she thought as her nose crinkled at the smell. Dust motes floated in air for a moment, and Charade thought of the snow she'd used to play in as a child, when they'd lived in Orlais. But then she shook her head and slipped into her shirt. Didn't do any good to reminisce.

"Come back to bed. Winger won't miss you." Veld stretched his long arms above his head and flexed his sleek muscles, a display she suspected was more for his benefit than hers. Still... Charade grabbed her boots as she walked back to the bed, then sat on the edge. Veld's hands were warm on her back and she let him slide them up her spine, move to her breasts. When he started kneading like he was making bread though, Charade bent down, dislodging his hands, and stuffed her feet into her boots.

He snorted and rolled further away, dragging the blankets with him. Hay poked out from the seems of the mattress ant it scratched under Charade's knees as she worked on the boots laces and buckles. When she was done she stood over Veld, tracing the shape of his lean body under the covers, resting on the bulge between his legs. And then she leaned over him, jamming her hand down on his chest as she grabbed her bow and quiver from the other side of the bed. He yelped a curse that she ignored.

"Business before pleasure," she said with a shrug as she walked to the door. Not that being in the Invisible Sisters was much of a job. But not that being in bed with Veld was all that great. One day she'd do better. She owed her mother that much.
jaebility: (da //  alistair <3)
She lit the fire with the taper and they stood there a the flames rose. Alistair warmed his hands, then caught himself, blushed, and clasped them behind his back. It seemed sacrilegious to use Her holy brazier as a campfire.

Though he was cold. He shivered in his armor, the sweat from the last fight turning to ice on his skin. Wind wailed through shattered gaps in the snow that roofed the temple, and the weak sunlight that crept through the windows was a pale blue, sickly and diluted. He shivered again and moved closer to Mairen, who was studying the massive door that locked them from the back of the shrine and whatever bloody secrets the cultists were hiding in the ice.
jaebility: (pw // busy)
12. OTP
UGH. SO MANY. For main character/companion, it's f!Cousland/Alistair. They're just so right together. Alistair's pure devotion to Cousland is so heart-warming. He's so dedicated; he doesn't see anyone else but her. My Cousland is fiercely protective of him; he represents the life she's supposed to leave behind, the life that as a Grey Warden, she no longer has a right to. Cousland flips the world upside to give Alistair the happy ending he's always wanted.

Following closely behind is Hawke/Anders, naturally. Both f! and m!Hawke... Can't decide which gender I prefer more. My f!Hawke is similar to Cousland in her attempt to create a haven for her lover. She wants stability, or at least a sense of control. As a mage, dude!Hawke is more concerned with just surviving. So when everything comes crashing down, f!Hawke loses much more than her male counterpart. But I love her she's willing to make that sacrifice for Anders.

For NPCs, I've been digging Connor/Fenyriel. And then there's Bethany/Leliana, Varric/Anders, Cousland/Anders, Wade/Herren, and Sigrun/Varric. And Aveline/Donnic. And Hespith/Branka. And Fenris/Sebastian.

The rest of the questions )
jaebility: (random // princess)

Rivers Til I Reach You
f!Hawke, on the run from Kirkwall, follows her lover Anders to Denerim, where he has partially begged, partially tricked Queen Cousland into protecting them. Out of the bargain, the Queen-Commander gets their help as she travels across Ferelden, chasing reports of Orlesian involvement in her own country's collapsing Chantry. Also: babies.

I've been severely neglecting my DA Big Bang fic. I got some substantial writing done on the train yesterday and just now did a word count: one-third of the way through. Not bad, but I'd hoped to have it done before NaNo started. ...Yeah, that's probably not going to happen. Slight consolation that the rest of the DA:BB community is procrastinating just as much as me.
jaebility: (da // hawkward)
She stayed their wedding night - of course she did, what kinda bride would go runnin' off when the hall was still filled with guests? - but it didn't take long for her to stop smilin' at him and start spendin' all her hours in her lab. Laboratory like she was some sort of topsider mage or somethin', with her inventions to keep her company. Course it wasn't just her tools keepin' her occupied. Heh, though maybe she and Hespith used a few of those tools...

Everyone said she's done with him, but that didn't mean that Oghren was done with her. When she stopped comin' to bed at all, not even when it was his birthday or their blighted anniversary, he found himself a bottle instead of another wife and drank and drank and drank until it got easier to convince himself that all was all right in their house and that she'd come crawlin' back, beggin' and moanin' for him again.

They weren't dreams, since dwarves didn't mess with the Fade like surfacers, but sometimes he'd get in one of these dazes from all the beer and the echoes in their empty home that his sword made scraping against the stone sounded like her voice sayin' his name.

---

The marriage wasn't a farce, not exactly, not from the beginning. Oghren's charm was like a whetstone, rough and grinding, but it made her sharper, and she left their "battles" with grins and flushes, and sometimes beard-burns on her chest that itched under her armor.

The invention - Ancestor's take it, it was perfect and was worthy of a Paragon's title - filled a void that once had been filled by Oghren. He was always there getting in the way, upsetting her notes and knocking over experiments. When she lay in bed her head whirred with new ideas, new trials to start, and her hands twitched like they were moving for her tools, even when they ached for rest. She snapped and him, shoved him out of the way before her burnt down her bench, the whole blighted house. He whined when she didn't want to stop for a blighted dinner, threatened when she wouldn't leave for some blighted Proving. It got easier to just ignore him, and Branka got good enough that his presence didn't interrupt her studies, not even when he started to plead.

When she read about the Anvil, there was a click in her like a lever being pulled into place. Hespith stayed with her in the Shaperate, holding up candles for her to read the ancient tomes, bringing ink for her to finish her notes, rubbing her shoulders when Branka cracked them hard enough to dislocate them. And she listened. And she learned. And, unlike Oghren, Hespith believed.

It was no question, then, what Branka chose to take with her into the Deep Roads and what Branka left behind.
jaebility: (random // pokemans)
Bhelen Aeducan/Jowan - Save the one last dance
There is no other place in Ferelden for him to hide, so Jowan slides through the gates of Orzammar into the depths of the dwarven city to plead with the king for protection from the unyielding templar force chasing his blood. When he gets an audience, Bhelen is more amused than awed, but with a wave of his hand he grants Jowan a room in the palace and a job that surely even he can handle: entertainment. But there is also the idea that the king's enemies will be impressed by a maleficar included in court, and Jowan, gaunt and pale and taller than everyone else, is certainly strange enough to inspire concern among the nobles.

At come party, some event to celebrate Bhelen killing someone or other for something or other, Jowan stands by the throne and tries to look menacing. Bhelen grins up at him, then clamps his hand around Jowan's wrist to yank him down to eye level. "Wojech Ivo swears that you cast some sort of spell on him to lose the proving."

Jowan tries to find the warrior in the sea of dwarven faces, but the beards blend together. Bhelen grunts and his grip loosens but doesn't drop. "Spread fear, if it's easier than working magic. But I want to see what you're really capable of."

"Whenever you wish, Highness."

Bhelen stands - not that it makes any difference, it's not like he's any taller on his feet - and reaches for a cup to raise for a toast. The crowd silences immediately and turns toward him, waiting for his blessing like congregation at the chantry. Afterward when the music starts once more, Bhelen has Jowan brought to him again. "Stay until the end," he orders. "At the last dance I'll find you again and you'll tell me what you've learned. Don't mingle, but watch who you can. Maybe you can see more from your perspective."

Jowan murmurs that he will, of course he will, but Bhelen's attention is already elsewhere. He adds absently as Jowan is waved away, "You'll be spending the night with me, of course. So don't grow to attached to anyone."

Later, as dawn breaks outside, Jowan comes to Bhelen with his cache of secrets and spells and they walk in companionable silence to the royal chambers. He is surprised when Bhelen has the guards strip him - for the king's safety, they explain as their swords rip through his robes. He is surprised, but not much. Conversation progresses as normal, as if all Bhelen's discussions are done in the nude, until the guards are dismissed and Bhelen commands, not unkindly, for Jowan come to him. Even on his knees, Jowan is too tall, so Bhelen orders him to lie prostrate on the bed. By the time the guards return to announce that court will soon be in session, Jowan has solidified his place at Bhelen's side.
jaebility: (Default)
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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November 2016

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