no language left to say it
Cullen Rutherford/Ariadne Lavellan, 2.2k words, rated M, also on AO3
Set a handful of days after the final battle against Corypheus; their last morning of solitude before they have to go back to their duties. Inspired by this lovely gif set.
There are are mornings where he wakes up before her, not because he’s been shaken awake out of nightmares, but for no reason other than that the Fade has decided it is done with him. When this happens, he’ll take a moment to enjoy the feeling of her curled around him. How her arm is slung loosely across his waist. Her breath against his neck. All reminders that he is here, not elsewhere. All reminders that he is safe. Cullen will bask in this feeling as he awakes, but then he’ll roll over as slowly and gently as he can in order not to wake her, just so he can lay in the morning sun and stare for a while.
This is one of those mornings. His heart feels too big for his chest, threatening to crack his ribs as he looks at her. He prays, in that moment, more feeling than thought, an overwhelming wave of thankfulness that the Maker brought him this. That the Maker let him keep it. That he continuously brings her back to him in one piece, so that he can watch the early morning light from the open balcony doors spill across the bed and onto her skin. These moments are his favorites, where he gets to take her in. Her face, relaxed in sleep. The thin scar that runs through her eyebrow and across her cheekbone that wasn’t there when they met. The larger scar along her jawline that was. Her hair, a mess of tangled curls that falls around her shoulders, glowing a bright auburn in the morning sun.
(It brings to mind a memory, of her pinning him into the grass after an impromptu sparring session in a neighbouring valley. She’s laughing, the sun positioned perfectly behind her head to light her hair up in a halo. He’s staring up at her, smiling down at him with her slightly crooked teeth, and is suddenly overwhelmed in the knowledge that he’d do anything she asked of him. That he’d drop everything and run away with her right now if she wanted him to. There has never been a moment in which he’s wanted to tell her that he loves her more than that one, when she’s laughing and momentarily carefree, lit up by the sun.
He didn’t tell her. Not then. Not yet.
He laughed along with her, pulled her down to kiss him instead of succumbing to the thundering urge to let his feelings come tumbling out.
He still hasn’t told her.)