my feet finally touch my head


1.2k words


TW: violence, gore, and allusions to torture.

My hair.

I reached up to my head. My fingers trembled in the cracked reflection of the filth-caked mirror. I touched my scalp, bald and still raw from the carelessly wielded razor. Tears finally spilled from my eyes.

I didn’t have much to be vain about. The only thing I had worthy of any pride had been my hair, long dark and thick. It could fool people, at a cursory glance, into thinking that perhaps I was beautiful.

But now it lay in chopped tangles at my feet.

I had never been pretty, but at least I hadn’t been ugly.

He didn’t let me out for another week. An unwitting kindness. Perhaps He thought solitude would break me, but instead it gave me the valuable time I needed to accept my new situation.

The shock had worn off, or maybe it had only finally set in, because I hadn’t thought so clearly in days. The tears stopped and so did the feelings.

I asked for a comb and He laughed at me. Then He saw I wasn’t joking. Perhaps He did think I was going mad, because He had one sent to me anyway.

I spent three days collecting up my hair from where it was scattered around the cell floor. I carefully combed out the knots and gathered up the long black tangles in my fingers, smoothing out the lengths like I was brushing a dolls hair. It had been up to my waist when he’d shaved it off.

At least it would sell for a pretty coin to a wig merchant, I thought grimly.

The scars on my back and shoulders looked like feathers, white and delicate against dark skin. They drifted down my upper arms, fading into fainter, wispier silver slashes like I’d been dusted with snowflakes. They looked beautiful, in a haunting sort of way. If you didn’t look too hard. If you didn’t think too much.

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It’s Such A Drag

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Alright, so…while I’d been on the run with Hawke, I’d been working on The Tale of the Champion. We both agreed their story needed to be told - even if we didn’t always agree on how, heh. I finished it pretty quick, considering the first very rough draft burnt up in that sodding cave spider fiasco

We stopped by a town and I shipped the thing off to my editor in Kirkwall, figuring I should probably head back myself so my editor knew how to actually get in touch with me for edits. 
Naturally, I dragged my feet a bit on it for a few weeks, figuring I had time to stay and protect Hawke while my editor read through the book. 

Sooner than I’d hoped, the time came for me to leave and I made my way back to Kirkwall for final edits and to see the manuscript sent off to the printers. Things went…uncharacteristically well. Heh, looking back I probably should have seen that as a sign of some sort. 

Either way, the book was printed and started to get circulation pretty sodding quickly. I took up my old room back in The Hanged Man and started to pick up the pieces of my life again. 
Things seemed like they were going to start returning to…well, something like normal, whatever the sod that is, until I got some unwelcomed guest.

I’d just gotten home from a meeting with a few Guild members. I was tired and felt like shit after a night with no sleep. Turns out sleeping in a city that partially exploded can make you particularly jumpy when you haven’t had enough to drink. Or maybe it’s when you’ve had too much. 

Either way…I get back to the tavern, put Bianca up, and head back to the bar. That’s when I noticed two guys looking pretty sodding out of place - big burly guys who looked like they hadn’t laughed a day in their lives with huge eyeballs on their armor. I remember wondering if they’d come to buy drinks or a sense of humor when they got up and started walking toward me. 

I took a few steps back and when they advanced, I turned and bolted toward my room, trying to get to Bianca. Turns out the bastards were deceptively quick, even in that bulky armor. Didn’t help that I was too tired to see straight, either. 
I rounded the corner, tripped on the rug, and the bastards pinned me, taking a few hits at me until I was more or less compliant. Apparently neither of them could bother to actually carry me, so they decided to drag me out of the sodding tavern. Drag me. All the way to the sodding Chantry. From The Hanged Man.
And I really liked those sodding boots. 

They’d bound my hands behind my back but they’d done a shit job of it, so I started working on the rope as soon as my head had cleared. (grins) I may have large hands, but they’re surprisingly dexterous when I need them to be. 

Unfortunately, being dragged up sodding stairs in Lowtown and Hightown didn’t help matters any and by the time I managed to get my hands free, they were dragging me down a long, overly-decorated hallway and into a dark room. Which gave me all kinds of good feelings. (snorts)

I’d barely had a chance to clear my head when I was being shoved into a high-back chair. Heh, then again, I’m a dwarf - they’re all pretty much high-back chairs to me. Either way, let me tell you, I’ve had gentler invitations - which I mentioned, naturally.

I managed to clear my head right as a statuesque figure emerged into what little bit of light there was in the room and an accented voice spoke much too loudly for my still-ringing head. 

“I am Cassandra Pentaghast, Seeker of the Chantry.”

And that, messeres, is how I was dragged into this mess. (grins) Literally.