How I perceive the series in a nutshell. Awakening is like a summer extension course taken between freshmen and sophomore year; you remember the main points and a couple friends you made but the rest is vague.
Kiss Prompt #17 (height difference kisses where one person has to bend down and the other is on their tippy toes) with Fenhawke for @beetle-ships-it-all <3 ILU BEETLE (and I promise more!)
[side note: these kissfics are now being added to a series on ao3 that you can find here]
There were some things Hawke often forgot about: eating, if he was particularly busy and no one reminded him; watching his own back in combat, as he got preoccupied with his chosen target and assumed someone would watch it for him; and just how much smaller than him Fenris really was. The elf was wicked strong, wielding his two-handed greatsword with deceptive ease and charging with devastating force into ranks of their enemies, stunning or bowling over most he came in contact with. When they fought, it didn’t matter how tall Fenris was (unless Varric was their archer, he supposed).
And they fought a lot, especially in those early years, scrapping to make a living. And really, Fenris’s height had never mattered, not for a long time, because as interested as Hawke was in the captivatingly beautiful, hauntingly mysterious elf, he wouldn’t push him. Couldn’t push him without the chance of spooking him and scaring him off. Hawke wouldn’t take the chance of Fenris accepting his advances simply out of a feeling of obligation, a way to repay him for helping with the slavers that night they met.
So once it did start mattering, Hawke figured it was to be expected that he would sometimes misremember Fenris’s height. There were a lot of other things he had his mind on, after all; worrying about the state of the city and the constant clashes between Meredith and Orsino, the passive way Elthina watched from her Chantry, the people in the streets looking to him to solve their problems because no one else was doing anything. Which made things all the more confusing when he turned from his front door to bid Fenris a good night after a long day fixing things and found the elf’s face on a level with his own, soulful green eyes shining at him. He blinked. Fenris was this tall? That didn’t seem quite right.
“Shh,” Fenris said. He reached out with one gentle, spike-gauntleted hand to catch Hawke’s arm, still armored itself, and tug him closer.
Their lips met, cautious and tentatively seeking, this dance one they were yet learning all the steps to. Hawke moaned, the dry warmth of Fenris’s lips his undoing as they slowly parted to allow Fenris’s tongue to dart against him, encouraging him to open. He wrapped his other arm around Fenris’s waist, careful of the tendency the armor joints had of pinching flesh and snagging garments. Fenris hummed, a low, pleased sound, and shifted his grip from Hawke’s arm to the gorget under his chin. Hawke had a moment of confusion before Fenris pulled, dropping down and forcing Hawke to dip his head if he wanted to keep kissing Fenris. Which he did, he really did.
So he ducked his head, craned his neck, snugged Fenris closer to his breastplate, and stolidly ignored the crick forming down the top of his spine. He peeked though, twisting his head to look down at Fenris’s feet. Flat on the ground. Huh. Right. Fenris was short, he reminded himself, the top of his head coming only as high as Hawke’s chin. Which, he’d found to his delight a week ago, was perfect for resting his chin on to elicit an amused grumble after a battle.
Fenris hmm’d a questioning sound at Hawke’s movement, nearly pulling away before Hawke came back to himself. He used the considerable strength coiled in his arm around Fenris’s waist to lift the elf onto the edge of one of the planters outside the door. It honestly didn’t matter to him that his mother had begun the process of digging up the old plants and putting in new ones; all that mattered was that it put Fenris, flat-footed, even with Hawke.
He broke away, kissed the corner of Fenris’s mouth, and smiled at him when the elf opened his eyes. Fenris shifted his feet in the dirt that had spilled out of the planter, creating a cleaner spot to stand in, then smirked, threaded his gauntlet through Hawke’s hair, and slotted their lips together again.
it’s so much harder to hate a character when you ask yourself “but what would the warden commander think?”
because u can bet ur precious ass that the warden commander would shower them with gifts for no other reason than you mentioned this thing once so i got it for you nbd nbd also here are a dozen other things that made me think of you and i thought you’d like them do you like them? here have ten
the character could literally attempt to murder the warden commander, and nine times out of ten warcomm would still punch anyone who dared suggest they weren’t a valued member of the warcomm’s team straight into next week.
the warden commander would unlock their tragic backstory in a week, tops, and defend them to the grave knowing all of their flaws and foibles
okay kids here’s the deal. the official maps we’re given are tragically lacking in detail & ridiculously underpopulated. so to continue my legacy as Map Nerd Extraordinaire, here’s my non-canon & much busier map of ferelden. feel free to take as much or little of this as you like, just gimme a credit if you do!
Alistair had always thought they would go together. He’d had that romantic notion that they would die side by side either in battle somewhere in the Deep Roads. He knew that the wish about a quiet death in their sleep or of old age was such an impossible hope, he’d given up dreaming about it a long time ago. He didn’t allow himself to even entertain the idea because he knew it would do him no good.
Their days had always been limited. They’d known that from they day they had first kissed, had first allowed themselves to hope for a bit of beauty among the darkness and destruction. And really, he had been fine with it. As fine as someone madly in love could be when not even eternity with the other seemed to be enough, much less the blink of an eye they were actually given. He had been fine with it because, in the end, Alistair had known that whatever little time they’d left, they would spend it together and be together when the Calling finally came. That at the very least, they could comfort each other and keep each other afloat a little while longer while the siren song announcing their final fight tried to pull them under. What Alistair hadn’t expected was that the cruel song came way too early when he was sitting huddled in front of a dying campfire in the rain, alone and hunted, after not having seen her for over three years. Three excruciating long years with hardly a word to even let him know she was still alive.
In his darkest hours, he told himself that he’d feel if she died, that she HAD to be alive. It was all that sometimes kept him sane and the anxiety at bay. All that kept him fighting whatever was left of the “good fight”. Or at least it had until everything had gone to shit. When the Order had started descending into madness, mages and templars started a war, and a cruel song began haunting him in the middle of a starless night. A song that shouldn’t have come for several years. A song that shouldn’t have come when she was gone.
And for a moment, Alistair hated her.
Hated that she had broken her vows, had left him for some quest doomed to fail, had left him to face this alone. For the first time since Duncan had taken him in he felt truly and utterly alone. The sudden hatred was gone as fast as it had appeared but his moment of selfishness left a bitter aftertaste of guilt and shame, a shadow over the cruel song that clawed at his mind and soul.
Alistair wasn’t ashamed of how scared he was. He wasn’t afraid of dying, not really. He had faced death often enough for the feeling to feel like an old companion, not necessarily welcome but familiar none the less. The thing he was afraid of was dying alone. Of succumbing that wretched song without having seen her at least one last time.
There hadn’t been enough chances to tell her how much he loved and needed her. Not enough to show her how much he cherished her or worship her the way she deserved. They’d never had the time to just be themselves, not when they had the Wardens to rebuild and an Order to lead. Right now it all felt like a cruel joke, a life full of possibilities wasted. All their hard work and sacrifices and for what? Something was poisoning the Wardens from within and the one person that could do something against it, the one they would probably listen to, had vanished into the night with little more than a written apology for not being brave enough to say goodbye. In his heart, he knew she just wanted to avoid another fight with him.
Alistair closed his eyes, trying to forget the last words he had said to her, selfish and unkind and utterly scared. It had been three long years and still, they were waking him up at night, the guilt almost suffocating him. Now they mixed with the sounds of the wordless song that never left his mind. He wondered if she heard it too. If she was as scared as he was, missing him by her site. Or if she had already forgotten about him, too focused on her quest that now seemed even more in vain than before.
A shuddering breath left Alistair as he opened his eyes again, watching the slowly dying fire. It seemed kind of fitting that it hadn’t stopped raining ever since the Calling started. At least that way he could blame the chill in his bones on the fact that he hadn’t been dry in weeks instead of the profound desperation that had settled deep within him. Exhaustion tore at him but he dreaded closing his eyes, knowing what nightmares awaited him in the Fade. So he kept staring at the diminishing flames until they finally lost the battle against the rain and the night swallowed him. Alistair made no move to rekindle the fire. He kept sitting in the dark, gazing at nothing while he listened to the whispers and the eerie music born in his head. Alone.
“I just really need to have you here right now,” he whispered into the darkness, silently wishing the wind would carry his voice to her and bring her back.
Because a lot of my friends seem to be sick lately. Have some DAI-themed sympathy.
For purposes of this headcanon, I am assuming that head colds exist in Thedas, that magic and potions can alleviate symptoms but not cure them outright, and that, while people don’t have a full-fledged germ theory they are aware of contagion and contamination as contributing factors to disease outbreak.
To the surprise of some members of the Inquisition, Blackwall is extremely reasonable about colds. While he’s still functional, he’ll power through, but once he’s fuzzy-brained or short-breathed enough that he’s no longer operating at peak performance he’ll remove himself from the situation. His favorite cold cure is a particularly nasty Fereldan whisky in hot water with honey and Rivaini lemon, although as far south as they are, usually all the lemon he can get his hands on is dried. (Sometimes Cole will come to visit him and then, as if by magic, there will be fresh slices of lemon instead of dried in his toddy.)
Cassandra is the worst illness patient ever. She considers herself not to have the time nor the patience for colds… and the fact that she nevertheless contracts them from time to time doesn’t disabuse her of this. It is sadly clear that being sick offends her dignity, and so she denies it for as long as possible. She persists in attempting to go about her duties as normal even with the cold, and sulks when someone finally sends her to bed, and then she’s crabby about it. Her favorite cold cure–once she has finally admitted to being ill at all–is chicken soup spiked with vinegar, with a side of trashy romance novels. (When she is feverish and tired and crabby, Cole will come and read to her. Or… not so much read: he holds the book, thumbs the pages, but the words he’s speaking are reflected out of her head, her memory of the book she wishes most to have read to her at that moment.)
Having spent so much time in various Circles, Cullen knows just how fast disease can spread in an isolated location. (While it is certainly not the most traumatic thing that happened at the Kirkwall Circle, Cullen still vividly remembers the Great Gallows Stomach Bug Incident of 9:35 Dragon.) So at the first feverish morning or sign of a sniffle, he is meticulous about isolating himself from the healthy: keeping at least a desk’s-width between them at first, and when the illness finally manifests in full, wrapping himself in blankets in his room and not coming out. His favorite cold cure is elfroot tea with plenty of honey. (When he is on his third day of self-imposed isolation and is bored and lonely out of his mind, Cole comes to visit, bringing nigh-incomprehensible scraps of gossip from around Skyhold.)
Dorian’s coping mechanism for illness is to be at least as annoying to the people around him as the cold is annoying to him. Suffering in silence is not in his nature–or, rather, it is, but only for serious issues. The trivial ones, he will complain about loud and long, and get some measure of satisfaction out of the snorts and eyerolls it inspires. Dorian swears by a particular herbal brew–a trade secret from a particular potion shop in Tevinter, that must be imported at considerable cost–made from sixteen special herbs and spices, bitter as the Maker’s wrath and cloying as Andraste’s smile. He magnanimously offers it to his suffering fellows, but none of them trust the stinking herbaceous brew. (When Dorian is feverish and uncomfortable enough that even complaining can’t make him feel better, there will be cool hands on his brow, though he won’t easily remember that it is Cole responsible.)
Qunari are nothing if not pragmatic, including about illness. Iron Bull prides himself on being tough, but he has no qualms about taking himself off to bed as soon as an illness takes effect. “The sooner you start taking care of yourself, the faster it runs its course–you can’t fight Vints and a sickness at the same time, that’s like taking on one enemy when another’s already flanking you.“ (He’s often the one most vociferously attempting to send a sniffling Cassandra off to bed–not that she listens.) His favorite thing when he’s sick is a drink made from the juice of bitter oranges, with or without a shot of strong spirits. (Once Bull is asleep, and only then, Cole slips in and hums the same songs the Tamassrans used to sing to him, until the wrinkles ease on his sleeping brow.)
Josephine much dislikes the inconvenience of illness, almost more than the discomfort itself. She has a vast collection of dainty handkerchiefs–embroidered, lace-trimmed, so pure and pristine a white that they look out of place in such a ramshackle location as Skyhold–and goes through them at a rapid pace while insisting that she is quite all right, don’t mind me, please forgive me for not shaking your hand–it is just a little thing, but I would not wish to give it to you! When she is finally forced to hole up in her room under her counterpane, she drinks a lemon honey tea with a heaping spoonful of crushed garlic (and takes care not to breathe on anyone; it is more pungent, in its way, than Dorian’s Tevinter medicine–although Josephine would tell you that it is the offensive strength of the garlic that makes it so effective), and still brings all of her scrolls and letters to bed with her so she can at least keep up on her correspondence. (Cole slips the half-read letter from her hand, caps her inkwell and sets it aside, and pulls the blanket up over her.)
For Leliana, a cold is not as much inconvenience as it is for many others. She does not often travel, and she can continue to write letters and send out agents even when quite ill–but that doesn’t mean she has to like it. As far as anyone outside Skyhold knows, the Nightingale of the Inquisition is never indisposed. Within Skyhold, people know to keep out of her way when she’s looking red-eyed and unusually murderous. When her head is congested, Leliana craves a basin of hot water filled with dried lavender blossoms; she tents a towel over her head and breathes the steam, lets it draw away both illness and tension. (When Leliana is sick, Cole slips not only honey but also steeped thyme into her wine. Sweet and sharp to clear both her head and her heart.)
When Sera gets sick, she’s no stoic about it: she bitches and moans from moment one all the way through when the cold has run her course. But she doesn’t let it stop her–as she will tell you with a snort, normal people don’t get to just stop doing stuff when they’re ill, not if they want to keep eating. It takes one of her friends ordering her to bed to get her the rest she needs. At whatever stage of her illness, she swears by an old peasant remedy: mugs of stout, to shore you up (and with enough mugs, to make you forget how bad you feel). (Cole never lets Sera know he’s there–he knows that he upsets her–but he makes sure that the tavern waitress knows to bring her ale when she wants it, and he piles up the blankets at night since she insists on keeping the windows open.)
It is rare that Solas falls ill, and when he does, he treats himself with tinctures and potions of his own, of a startling efficacy. (He is not stingy with them, but for some reason they never seem to be quite as effective on others.) Quite often his companions aren’t even aware that he was sick to begin with. More often than not he uses it as an excuse to contemplate the mysteries of the Fade: how sickness and spirits interact, whether a Spirit of Illness could be convinced to work on your behalf rather than against you. (Cole sits on the table next to his bedside, elbows on knees, and listens, listens, listens with infinite patience. That is more important to Solas than tea or soup: being listened to.)
Varric is almost as crabby about becoming ill as Cassandra, although he hides it better–or perhaps differently. While Cassandra is in snappish denial about it, Varric makes increasingly-bitter jokes about the rotten timing of this cold or the discomfort of that cough. Dwarves don’t fall sick very often, and Varric seems to treat it as a personal affront whenever he does–and as with all personal affronts, he faces it with snarly humor. His preferred method of treatment is a camphor salve to clear his sinuses (an Orzammaran dwarf treatment, but one his parents brought with them to the surface) and a shot of strong liquor to dull him to the tedium of sickness. He eats soup, too, but only under the steely eye of one of his friends. (Cole’s eyes are never steely, but he provides the soup nonetheless, and sits by Varric’s bedside listening to him complain as he eats it–feeling the strange way Varric’s mood lifts even as his complaints become more and more poisonous.)
It is a sure thing that Vivienne is far too dignified to ever have a stuffy nose or a cough or a fever. Vivienne is purity and perfection, too far above mere mortals to ever catch their diseases. …At least, so she would prefer people believe. So at the first sign of any disease, she shuts herself up; she could not possibly honk noisily into a handkerchief, darling, that’s absolutely common. She continues her work via correspondence, borrowing Leliana’s messenger-birds without leaving her rooms. Her preferred remedy is a strong Orlesian herbal soup, which she drinks by the bucketful while holding a handkerchief to her nose and plotting refined vengeance on the world in general and illnesses in particular. (Cole ensures that her pot of soup–kept warm over an array of tallow candles–does not run short, refreshing it with potent herbs and soothing broth at regular intervals.)
Cole doesn’t get sick–at least, not at first. For Cole, sickness is something that happens to other people. And, somewhat guiltily… he rather likes it. Sickness is a straightforward hurt, and it is not usually difficult to find out what someone needs to soothe it, whether it’s lemons for Blackwall or lavender for Leliana or a fresh set of handkerchiefs for Josephine. And it is a hurt that almost always runs its course, leaving its sufferer better in the end. It is nice, after so many tangled-tormented-thoughtbound-tremulous pains, to see a pain that he can soothe so easily with a cool hand or a warm cup of tea.
If and when he becomes human enough to catch a cold, Cole finds the tables turned. There is Cassandra reading at his bedside, Varric pouring him a mug of soup, Blackwall with whisky and lemon, Leliana leaving branches of lavender by his bedside, Bull with juice and spirits. Spirits for a spirit–but not all spirit, not all, not anymore, human enough to be sick, human enough to be cared for.
I’ve successfully avoided major spoilers for Trespasser so far, except for one but it’s alright because I kind of found it inevitable and it was already my headcanon for my inquisitor anyways so thats fine anyway it’s the (seriously stop reading if you are avoiding all spoilers for Trespasser) fact that the Inquisitor loses their arm. And I’m losing my shit about it. In a good way. In an excellent way. In the best possible way.
Prosthetics, you guys. So many different kinds of prosthetics.
Mages with runes etched in to their hands, with focusing crystals embedded in to knuckles, with veins of lyrium literally at their fingertips.
Knight Enchanters whose Spirit Hilt is built directly in to their prosthetic. Who trained for hours and hours under the mantra of This blade is an extension of you. It is part of your body. It is part of your soul. Knight Enchanters who can now embrace that truth more literally, who modify their Spirit Hilt so that it runs the length of their prosthetic. So that the magic can come sweeping out in different shapes or forms–a slash of light running alongside their arm, a burst of energy in the form of a repelling shield, or the original swath of magic like a sword sprouting from their body.
Rift Mages who create a prosthetic of their own out of latent sympathetic magic. The powers of the Fade still whisper to them, still catch around their arm where flesh used to be in swirls and eddies, trying to embody what once was there, what memory still holds in fine detail. Rift Mages who have temporary prosthetics made out of condensed magic. Who cast Stone Fist quite literally now as their formed hand goes rocketing forward. Rift Mages who can curry the favor of small wisps and delicate spirits that will hover around their arm and perhaps hold a thing or two until it is needed.
Necromancers who stride in to battle and capture the spirit of fallen enemies in order to create an ethereal prosthetic that’s faster and stronger than any human hand. Raising the dead to guard their left flank because they are not so readily able to defend it now. Necromancers who know exactly what a raised corpse is capable of depending on its state of decay, on what it still has, on what it is missing–and who know exactly how much they are still capable of.
Rogues with weapons built in to their forearms. Crossbows easily winched and fired. Static hands that can hold a bow steady.
Artificers who well know how to make, and maintain an articulated prosthetic–just as delicate as any one of their carefully spun traps. Artificers who embed their prosthetics with traps, who make little compartments full of dangerous things. Rogues who rig their prosthetics as a last resort, leaving it behind to explode and rain hell on unsuspecting enemies.
Assassins who hide deadly poisons in the spiked fingertips of their prosthetics. Who store terrible venoms in small vials carefully slotted in to the thing. Assassins who use the fact that their enemies will underestimate the false hand–see it as a weakness and a liability. Assassins who play that to their advantage, use it to strike when it’s least expected. Assassins with retractible blades hidden in the wrist in such a way that would make Ezio envious.
Tempest rogues who coat their arrows with concoctions embedded in their arms. Who can release compressed smoke from hidden compartments. Fast. Chaotic. Pulling one alchemical mystery after the next out of thin air, rigging their prosthetics like the Artificers do–except this one explodes with fire and ice and fury.
Warriors with heavy-wrough prosthetics to suit their more aggressive fighting style.
Champions who have shields latched on to their arm–quick release built in, in case of emergencies. Who can throw their entire body in to a shield blow, because the shield is part of them now. Champions with prosthetics of gilded silver and gold that can be raised, gleaming to catch the light and inspire defiance in the face of overwhelming odds. Champions with prosthetics that are essentially an extension of their armor, throwing their arm forward to take the blow that would have slain a friend, and continuing fearlessly where their flesh would’ve other wise been torn asunder.
Reavers with prosthetics embedded with spikes. With rivulets carved so that streams of blood flow along it with grotesque ease. Reavers with prostetics permenantly stained with the blood of each enemy felled, who can work themselves in to the beginning of a frenzy by scenting the blood that has seeped so deeply in to the limb. Reavers who charge on ever further, ever more enraged if the prosthetic is damaged–their fury only fueled by its destruction.
Templars who–like mages–have lyrium imbued in to their prosthetic, and may call upon it when it is needed. Templars who have etched their crest or passage from the Chant in to their new limb. Templars who summon the Wrath of Heaven with their glowing prosthetic, lifting it to the air as the lyrium in it burns and sizzles, and then slamming it down with the pillar of light like the fist of the Maker himself.
I am slowly resigning myself to the idea that whatever has happened to / will happen to the Warden in Inquisition is terrible and heartbreaking and there will be many tears
so to combat the pain yet to come i am doodling silly/sappy things that take place before. And I’ve been reading the Silent Grove/Those Who Speak/Until We Sleep comics again and wanted to draw AriSten so voila *handwave* WHAT IF-TIME
it’s probably superboring to have the PC be friends with everyone but I just ;;; w ;;; sten trying to make a funny for his bff. tell me that ain’t the cutest shit ever
i’m never gonna get the grey warden armor right never ever