Alistair opens his eyes and there is light streaming through the windows, falling in gold splendor onto Ziya’s warm skin. His eyes are closed, his long eyelashes fluttering lightly when he stretches, still lost in the Fade in the late morning. It’s summer, and Ziya’s skin is dark-bronzed brown, favored by the sun until he’s twice as dark as he was when they first met. He’s wearing white smallclothes, and is laying on top of the light summer quilt, limbs elongated, back slightly arched, a beautiful tableau of plump perfection. Alistair strokes his hair, tightly curled and messy, slightly sweaty from the oncoming heat. Ziya yawns and rolls over, oblivious.
Anders opens his eyes and Theron is already awake. He’s laying quietly next to him, on his belly, slowly reading a book. He’s naked still and the sun has covered his back in dense, red-brown freckles. It’s hot, and Theron has tied his hair up on the top of his head, a few wild strands of rich copper falling to stick to the back of his neck. Anders stretches a bit, and Theron turns to him. He smiles; his ears perk upwards by near imperceptible degrees, and he leans over Anders to softly kiss his mouth.
It was not supposed to be necessary to wash dishes by hand at The Hawke’s Nest. The building came with a commercial dishwasher with space for 30 glasses to be placed inside its rack. When the heavy metal lid was closed, steaming water and industrial detergent would clean the dishes in the space of three minutes—providing it was functioning properly. Not once since Theron started had it worked without a significant amount of swearing and struggling, and by the third night, he resigned himself to washing each glass by hand. Despite the ill-fitting rubber gloves and the harsh odor of grease-dissolving soap, it was not unbearable. He earned decent pay for minimal work, and the position gave him the opportunity to keep an eye on the Hawke’s Nest and its many mages.
From what he could tell, Anders was the only one who had any idea what mages were capable of. Merrill was sweet and shy, but clumsy. She brought Theron at least one broken glass a night, sometimes along with a bleeding finger that required him to lower the temperature of the water so she could clean it out. She smelled like ozone and ocean, and the tips of his ears crackled when she was near. Bethany was smoother, softer, and kept her composure under situations that would have brought Merrill sobbing to her knees. When it was chilly, she was surrounded by radiant heat befitting her nickname. As for Fabian, he had charm, and could have been dangerous had he known what he was doing with it. His attention was focused too narrowly on Jethann for him to realize that sometimes his fingertips glowed. They were all imbued with incredible power and completely ignorant of it.
While he was plunged forearm deep in hot sudsy water, scrubbing sticky chocolate from a dessert plate, Theron felt someone brush against his back. Thinking it was one of the servers, he stepped forward to lean against the counter and out of their way, only to be pinned between the sink and the body behind him, arms wrapping around his waist. He could smell Anders’ cologne, earthy musk with nebulous woody undertones and a hint of tobacco, familiar scents that brought with them the sense memory of his kiss, driving up his pulse until he felt it thumping in his ears. Anders pressed his lips to his temple as he drew him near, and Theron relaxed against him, drawn to the firm reality of the body under his suit.
"Come home with me tonight," Anders murmured, his mouth hard against Theron’s ear. At the warmth of his breath and the amorous brush of his hips, Theron gripped the slick sides of the sink and shuddered.
Much as I love Dragon Age, the way they handle accents really drives me absolutely nuts.
Dwarves have American accents…except for Bodahn and Sandal.
Everyone in Denerim and Kirkwall have British accents, except the City Elves who somehow have Canadian accents. How?
Flemeth has an American…
Re: Merrill, I think it’s because she was raised in another clan before being given to the Sabrae clan. Since clans tend to be separate from each other apart from Arlathvhen, it makes sense that each might have developed its own accent (and preserved different amounts of Elvish words, etc).
As for the rest, YEAH, it drives me nuts to think about. :|
Merrill is originally from Neverra. Since the Dalish are prone to separating into tight family groups, it would make sense to me that Dalish from different areas would have different accents and dialects of Elvish—think about the multitude of Native American dialects, or the amount of different accents one can find in the UK alone. Even America—someone from California has a different accent from someone from Louisiana, or someone from Boston.
That doesn’t mean I think the dwarf accents make sense, mind you—just weighing in on the elves.
It rarely snowed in Kirkwall, but when it began, the entire city knew to brace for the impact of a storm fed by the icy waters of the Waking Sea. Refugees in Darktown suffered the worst; with little real shelter to be found, they froze in the streets around sputtering fires. Anders treated the multitudes for common colds and frostbite, yet even as he worked himself into exhaustion, his efforts did little to slow the death the cold brought with it. Lowtown was no better, as houses in the Alienage had been constructed quickly and poorly, with scrap wood and rusty nails. Elves built bonfires by the vhenadahl, risking their necks by stealing firewood from wealthier houses to keep their families warm. Hightown was best prepared for the shift in weather; even the least maintained manors—like the one belonging to Fenris—were sturdy and warm, with solid stone walls providing fine shelter against wind, snow and inevitable ice.
Fabian Hawke, though not prone to extravagant displays of goodwill, invited everyone over for dinner on the coldest nights, opening his home to Anders despite the lingering animosity between them. But by the fifth night of solid snow, the roads were too thick for passage, and nobody took Fabian up on his standing invitation.
After it was apparent that there would be no guests, he sat in the library with a bottle of wine, half-drunk, having lost hope and cursing himself for the foolishness of hoping to begin with. Theron was gone; he had left a week before the snow, and wherever the wardens had needed him so greatly that he broke his promise to leave them must have been far indeed. Wanting him home was foolish, but with only Orana, Bohdan, and Sandal to keep him company, the manor was unbearably empty. Fabian finished the bottle and dozed in front of the fire, opening an eye once or twice when logs settled, the memory of Theron in his lap in that very chair stuck to the forefront of his mind.
"Messere Hawke, I hate to disturb you." Bodahn’s familiar voice, ever deferential, pulled Fabian from his sleep and he turned his head towards him, blinking hazily. "So sorry to wake you Messere, but there seems to be someone at the door."
Here’s the exact dialogue from Alain that you mentioned:
ALAIN: I can’t believe you got Grace to turn herself in. Starkhaven was never like this. The templars beat us and no one says a thing. The templars won’t let me send mail out. I found a letter to my parents that they burned in the furnace. Ser Karras said if I tell anyone he’s been in my chambers, he’ll make me Tranquil.
Thank you! It’s kind of a pet peeve of mine when people say that the Templars “weren’t so bad.” There were good Templars in DA2, but there was also widespread, systematic abuses that are evident in even background conversation.