A touch late, but here’s my interpretation of the “All Soul’s Day” prompt for @dahalloween
This has been a fun and challenging week, and I just wanted to thank everyone for reading along. I hope you all enjoy this final piece!
Riallan stepped into Madam de Fer’s parlor and put on her brightest smile. She had avoided social gatherings ever since she’d disbanded the Inquisition; it felt wrong to mingle with the most powerful people in Thedas when she had relinquished so much of her own strength. Most believed her departure from society was due to her amputated arm, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
Lavellan was incredibly proud of her fully articulated prosthetic. Made of silverite and obsidian, it gleamed in the flickering firelight of the parlor, the embedded runes glowing with soft, pulsing light as her magic ebbed and flowed through them. Dorian and Dagna had worked tirelessly to create an attachment that would feel less like a replacement and more like an enhancement. She’d struggled to channel her magic through the complex prosthesis, but with constant practice she had grown stronger and much more controlled.
Her presence was immediately noticed. With her pointed ears and glowing prosthetic, the black and silver dragon mask on her face had little purpose, but Vivienne had insisted. The only reason Riallan had agreed to attend the All Soul’s Day fête was because Dorian had promised to be her date. She could never pass up an opportunity to see her best friend.
The whispers were constant as she glided through the crowd, Orlesian nobility gossiping and theorizing about her sudden appearance. It rankled, but she kept the frustration off her face. She had learned well under her Advisers’ tutelage; she would beat them all at their own game if they forced her hand.
“My Lady Lavellan,” a masculine voice greeted her from behind, accented and painfully posh. A hand found the small of her back. “You look absolutely ravishing!”
She smirked at the man now walking beside her, guiding her to the punch bowl. It was the most emotion she dare show in their current setting.
“Magister Pavus,” she greeted. “You look quite marvelous yourself.”
And he did, as was to be expected. Several gold hoops dangled from his ears, matching the shimmering chains that draped around his neck. His hair had grown longer, as was the current style in Tevinter, and he had the top half pulled up into a bun. His tunic was fitted through the shoulder and waist, with matching pants, all black with gold trim. His mask matched his clothes, the dragon to match her own.
He looked the part of a reviled Tevinter Magister, which Riallan was confident was the point. And, as planned, their outfits complemented one another, her gown black with silver trim. Let the Orlesians gossip about her relationship with Dorian, she’d prefer that to the whispers about her arm or the peculiar absence of a certain bald elf that used to accompany her.
Dorian poured her a glass of red wine. “How are things?” He asked, and poured himself a glass.
Riallan rolled her eyes. Dorian knew very well how things were; they spoke at least weekly via their sending crystals. But, this was his way of checking on her, he was always so worried about her.
“Fine,” she said. “Quiet.” Meaning there had been no sign of Fen’Harel or his agents. Disbanding the Inquisition had been a risky decision, but she was convinced it was the right one. It might hobble her intelligence efforts, but it hobbled the Dread Wolf too.
Dorian hummed as he laced his arm through her replacement one. “No communications from the ex then?”
She laughed. “If he knows what’s good for him, he’ll stay away from me.”
“And me,” the magister growled. He guided her through the hall and toward the ballroom, their stride leisurely as they let the gathered attendees witness them together.
She smiled at him, indulging his protective side. She didn’t get to see it too often, as he usually shrugged through his emotions and onto lighter topics. “And how is Minrathous?”
He sighed. “Tiresome. I am so glad you invited me to come with you, I needed a vacation.”
“Vivienne suggested it, actually.”
He gaped at her, and she shut his mouth gently.
“She knew I wouldn’t come otherwise.”
“Ah, our dear Vivienne always was a manipulative one.”
“At least she’s forthcoming about it,” Riallan murmured.
Dorian glanced at her, worry in his gray eyes. “I’m sorry, Ria. I didn’t mean to-”
“Hush,” she said. “It’s my own fault my thoughts are so easily dragged to him.” She paused, causing Dorian to stop with her, and grinned. “Now, how about we give the Orlesians something to talk about?”
Dorian smirked. “What did you have in mind? I hope it’s something wonderfully salacious.”
“A dance or three with my favorite magister ought to do the trick.”
He groaned. “You are lucky I love you,” he complained, but led her to the dance floor.
“Yes, I am.”