• Hello Guest, the Post-Trespasser timeline is open to all characters now. If you want to play your DA:O/DA2 timeline characters in the Post-Trespasser timeline, please check out the thread below. It will give you all the information you need to get up and running in no time:

    Getting your DA:O/DA2 Character ready for Post-Trespasser!

A Life Most Ordinary And Wonderful [Closed]

Alistair Theirin

King of Ferelden
Canon Character
Noble
Grey Warden
Post DAI Timeline
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
110
#21
Nicolette was an attentive and empathetic audience, reaching out to offer a light squeeze on his arm as he spoke of the Crow dungeon and the pathetic wretch he had found there. The bright sun in the cloudless sky overhead, the cool breeze touched with the scent of the sea, the noise from the laborers on the docks and the cheers from the deck below signifying a victor in the contest all helped to anchor him in the present as he revisited the memories of darkness, gloom and the frustration of discovering that his father had been held in Velabanchel, but was there no longer.

“What would she have wanted with him?” the minstrel wondered aloud when he told her who had taken Maric. “Did the Crows explain why they kept him prisoner for so long in the first place?”

“Never did find that out,” he said, shaking his head. “If I had to guess, I’d say they planned to hold him for ransom, but other people had other ideas. We went to the Tellari Swamp looking for Yavanna - that was her name, by the way,” he added, “and ran smack into a high dragon.” It was easy to summon a droll expression now, but he’d nearly shit his royal trousers at the time. With no mage to heal them, fighting it would have been suicide. “I thought that it might have been Yavanna - Flemeth could change into a dragon - but then, she popped out of the bushes and called it off.” That had been very nearly as frightening as the dragon; Flemeth hadn’t had that kind of power (as far as he knew, anyway).

“And that’s when things started getting really weird,” he went on with a wry smile. “She took us to a place in the middle of the swamp: the Silent Grove. It was a … a sanctuary for dragons, to keep them from being destroyed by men.” Not something he would have ever considered necessary, but at least it was in Antiva, not Ferelden. “She told me that Flemeth had saved Maric’s life a long time ago, and in return, when his children were old enough to rule, he was to come to Yavanna. I don’t know if that was what he was trying to do when the Crows captured him, but she said that someone - she didn’t know who - had taken him from her, and she didn’t know if he was still alive.”

He pursed his lips and blew out a sigh. “So … foiled again,” he told Nicolette with a wan smile. “She tried to convince me to give up the search, and when I wouldn’t, she just walked away. We thought about trying to chase her down, but the pet dragon was a bit of a problem.” He snorted. “I hope that Arwen never gets that idea.” She certainly wouldn’t be hearing it from him, at least, not for a few more years.

“So, there we were, with no idea where to go next,” he continued, rolling his eyes. “And then, when we were leaving the swamp, we were ambushed by Claudio and his lackeys.” He smiled thinly. “He’d let us go hoping that we could lead him to the Grove, and we did a smashing job of that. Of course, he wasn’t going to turn down the chance to get his hands on another Fereldan king, and since we were outnumbered ten to one or so, I made a deal: he could take me if my companions went free.” Claudio had figured that Isabela would cut and run to save her own skin; Alistair had hoped that she would do otherwise, but there had been no knowing. She and Varric had both been injured in the initial attack; fighting on had not been an option.
 

Nicolette O'Hara

Prominent member
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
221
#22
Nicolette had not been sure what Alistair meant to tell her when he asked her for privacy. Not in her wildest imaginings could she have predicted it; Crow princes and travels across the sea, a monarch long thought dead proved living under capture, and now - a witch in command of a high dragon. Nicolette would have asked for more of a description of the beast, but one look at Alistair’s expression guarded her against making him relive it. Echoes of fear flickered in his eyes.

“And that’s when things started getting really weird.” He smiled wryly at her, perhaps predicting her thoughts - had things not already been weird enough? Apparently not. The witch protected the dragons from men. “She told me that Flemeth had saved Maric’s life a long time ago, and in return, when his children were old enough to rule, he was to come to Yavanna.” But why? “I don’t know if that’s what he was trying to do when the Crows captured him, but she said that someone - she didn’t know who - had taken him from her, and she didn’t know if he was still alive.”

That must have been frustrating. To come within a hair of his goal, and denied it again...Nicolette paused her internal monologue as her face creased with sympathy. She had more questions, but let him speak on. Only to then develop an instant dislike of a man she had never met, as Claudio had reappeared on the scene and tried to capture Alistair. "Of course, he wasn’t going to turn down the chance to get his hands on another Fereldan king, and since we were outnumbered ten to one or so, I made a deal; he could take me if my companions went free.”

The noble gesture would be no less than Nicolette would expect from Alistair. Although she had pieced together in their first meeting that he was a king, he had a naturally chivalrous attitude to those around him. He was, in essence and in full, a good man. “How did you get out of that? And also...do you believe Yavanna was telling the truth, that she did not know who had Maric?”

Nicolette would guess this Flemeth character was behind it. Was it not her who had told Maric to go to Yavanna in the first place?
 

Alistair Theirin

King of Ferelden
Canon Character
Noble
Grey Warden
Post DAI Timeline
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
110
#23
Not for the first time, Alistair wished that Leliana was here and not in Val Royeaux, serving as Left Hand to the new Divine. He knew the reasons; she had told him years before of the debt that she owed to the woman who had once been called Revered Mother Dorothea, and Divine Justinia V could ask for no better adviser and guardian. But the King of Ferelden missed her counsel, and Alistair missed his dear friend. She would have been invaluable in the search for Maric; she and Zevran made a potent team. And had she been here now, she would have enjoyed hearing his tale, prompting him with questions to recall the little details that had eluded his memory at first telling

By her own admission, Nicolette was not fond of combat and danger, but she was as attentive an audience as Leliana would have been, and her eyes had widened at hearing of Claudio’s ambush and the bargain that Alistair had struck to save his companions.

“How did you get out of that?” she asked him wonderingly. “And also...do you believe Yavanna was telling the truth, that she did not know who had Maric?”

“I believed her,” Alistair confirmed. “Witches - the ones I’ve known, anyway -” Three, by the last count, which was three more than he preferred. “They hate not knowing something, and even more than that, they hate admitting they don’t know it.” Some of the best points he’d scored on Morrigan had taken advantage of that trait. Childish? Undoubtedly, but in the middle of a Blight, you took your diversions where you could. “She didn’t know … but Claudio did, and being a proper villain, once he had me where he wanted me, he started getting chatty. Which didn’t really bode well for my long term prospects, but I figured that as long as he was talking, I would listen. Seems he was the one who’d taken Maric, on orders from his master, and he figured I’d be considered another good catch.

“Fortunately - for me, anyway - my companions found their way back to Yavanna, who healed them up. For her own reasons.” He smiled thinly. “Which didn’t extend to actually helping them rescue me. They did it anyway … actually got the jump on Claudio’s goons. Unfortunately, Claudio got killed in the fight before he could tell me the name of the one giving his marching orders.” He’d been angry at the time, but not too much; they’d been trying to save his life, after all, and the bastard had been about to kill Isabela when Zevran’s revelation that he had been the one to kill her husband Luis, who had evidently been a close friend of the Talon, had given the pirate enough of an opening to turn the tables on her opponent.

“But it turns out that witches are good for more than acting superior and making vague statements,” he went on. “Yavanna arrived - after all the fighting was done, of course.” Lying bitch that Morrigan had been, she had at least never shirked away from battle. “She called Claudio’s spirit back from beyond the Veil - and it was every bit as creepy as it sounds, in case you're wondering. Told him if he didn’t answer her questions, she’d leave him tied to his corpse in that swamp forever.” He snorted. “That did the trick, and he told her the name of his master: Aurelian Titus, a Tevinter magister.” He felt his lips curl as he spoke; simply saying the name again left a bad taste in his mouth.
 

Nicolette O'Hara

Prominent member
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
221
#24
Even if there had been a risk of Nicolette repeating the tale to anybody else, she was not sure she would have been able to. Her powers of recollection were not up to capturing every twist and turn of the tale so far. But she had no intention of breaking Alistair’s trust, and in any case she wa a little preoccupied with trying to stop her eyes from popping out of her skull. The witch who had apparently been the cause of all the problems in the first place had shown a good side - or at least, found it worth her while to save Alistair’s companions - allowing them to rescue him, but alas, leaving him without closure. At that, Nicolette squeezed Alistair’s arm in sympathy. It was all she could really offer.

“Yavanna arrived - after all the fighting was done, of course. She called Claudio’s spirit back from beyond the Veil-” Nicolette could not quite keep herself from looking horrified - “and it was every bit as creepy as it sounds, in case you’re wondering. Told him if he didn’t answer her questions, she’d leave him tied to his corpse in that swamp forever.” Nicolette shuddered. Although it sounded as though Claudio would have deserved it, it still would have been a horrifying fate. “That did the trick, and he told her the name of his master: Aurelian Titus, a Tevinter magister.”

Now Tevinter magisters were involved, because of course they were. Nicolette rubbed her temple, sorting the facts of the story into order in her head, expression baffled. “So - it was actually a Tevinter magister who had your father taken, and demanded no ransom? And Yavanna wanted him for her own purposes?” By the Skies, what had Maric been involved in? Winning a rebellion against a vast empire would surely be enough for most people for one lifetime.

“So - then what? Did you go to confront him?”
 

Alistair Theirin

King of Ferelden
Canon Character
Noble
Grey Warden
Post DAI Timeline
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
110
#25
Nicolette was looking almost dazed at this point, and Alistair couldn’t really blame her. Even the insanity they had waded through during the Blight had not prepared him for what he had encountered in those few weeks.

“So - it was actually a Tevinter magister who had your father taken, and demanded no ransom?”
she asked, massaging her temples. “And Yavanna wanted him for her own purposes?”

“Pretty much, yeah,” he confirmed with a rueful grimace, then leaned over the side. “Could we get some water up here, please?” he called down. His mouth was getting dry from talking, and he worried that the sun overhead might be discomforting his audience.

“So - then what?” she wanted to know. “Did you go to confront him?”

“Eventually,” he confirmed, “but first, Yavanna led us back to the Silent Grove and took me - just me - into the inner sanctum of the temple. She called it the Hall of Sleepers.” He was silent for a moment, staring out to sea, his gaze much further away. “It was enormous,” he said quietly. “The walls all glowed blue … like being underwater, almost. And there were giant eggs all around, and dragons - bigger than any I’d seen before - looked like they were sleeping, and the one we’d seen before, awake and watching us. She said they’d been there for centuries, held by magic to keep them from being killed by men.”

His brow furrowed lightly. “She said that when Maric came, he woke one of them: the Queen of dragons. She said that was why Titus took him, because of the power in his blood. In my blood.” He still didn’t understand it. Not really.

“Water!” Ari scrambled up the shrouding with a skin. He took it from her and offered it to Nicolette before tending his own thirst. They’d drawn it fresh: the water was cool and refreshing, with none of the flat taste that came from sitting in a skin for a few hours. He drank gratefully, then tipped a bit on top of his head, enjoying the cool trails rolling down his scalp. One of those things kings weren’t supposed to do, and he gave his companion an unrepentant and mischievous grin before sobering once more and passing the waterskin back to her.

“She wanted me to wake the rest, said if I did, that I could bring back my father and he’d be king, just like I wanted. She lied.” His lip curled slightly, his eyes gone flat. “Witches always lie. They play games with words and dance around the truth until they tie it all in knots. Anything to get what they want.” He shook his head, trying to dispel the darkness he could hear in his voice, knowing that he wasn't just talking about Yavnna now. He didn’t want to frighten Nicolette, but he did want to be honest with her. He took the waterskin back and drank deeply once more, taking time before he spoke again.

“I killed her,” he said simply. “She was so sure that she had me, that I’d dance to her tune, that she didn’t think twice about letting me close to her. She took my father, Ferelden’s king … everything that went wrong during the Blight was because of that. I ran her through with my sword … then I left.”

He met Nicolette’s eyes, letting his puzzlement show. “I thought sure we’d have to fight the dragon that was awake, but it just watched me leave.”

He bit his lip, afraid to ask, needing to know. “Did I do the right thing?” He’d been sure at the time, cold anger infusing him with the certainty of self-righteousness, but with time and distance, doubt had grown.
 

Nicolette O'Hara

Prominent member
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
221
#26
Alistair called for water. Nicolette had barely realised she was getting thirsty after the stretch of time in the sun, she’d been so absorbed by what he was saying. And she was not the one doing all the talking. There was more - something in Maric’s blood, and therefore Alistair’s, had caused a dragon to wake up. That was something that would appear immensely valuable to some people, and terrifyingly dangerous to others. Little wonder that Alistair did not wish it to become general knowledge.

Water was brought, and Alistair was finding his way to the end of the tale. Yavanna revealed her purpose. “She wanted me to wake the rest, said if I did, that I could bring back my father and he’d be king, just like I wanted.” At least to Nicolette, Alistair had always been open about how uneasy he was with the role life had pushed on him, and she could imagine how tempting the offer might have been. Except it did not appear to have tempted Alistair at all. With contempt, he dismissed the possibility that she might have been telling the truth. “She lied. Witches always lie. They play games with words and dance around the truth until they tie it all in knots. Anything to get what they want.”

A question bubbled up in the back of Nicolette’s head, but it was not one she planned to ask. Alistair’s bitterness spoke of previous experience, and as far as Nicolette knew, there was only one other witch with whom he had had acquaintance. The elusive and mysterious Morrigan.

“So...what did you do?”

“I killed her.” Nicolette could not help flinching a little. She knew why Alistair had done it, agreed that it had been the right thing to do. But even after all this time, the decision to kill was not something she could ever imagine taking lightly. Thank Skies, it had never fallen to her. “She was so sure that she had me, that I’d dance to her tune, that she didn’t think twice about letting me close to her. She took my father, Ferelden’s king … everything that went wrong during the Blight was because of that. I ran her through with my sword … then I left. I thought sure we’d have to fight the dragon that was awake, but it just watched me leave.”

Puzzlement, and not a little fear, were writ large on Alistair’s face as he turned his gaze directly on her. “Did I do the right thing?”

While it was bizarre that somebody so influential was asking her for her thoughts on his actions, Nicolette suddenly felt back on settled ground. She did not even need to think before she answered, folding her fingers over his and stroking the back of his hand as gently as her mother had used to do when soothing her from a nightmare.

“I believe you did.” In his place...well, it would have sickened her to do it, but she could well have done it all the same. “Dragons make for magnificent tales, but one alone can kill hundreds and cause misery for thousands. To wake all of them would have brought more pain to Thedas than many could have withstood. And - Yavanna has clearly been the source of many years of pain. While the scars may remain, she cannot cause further injury to you now.”

There was more boisterous shouting from below. The children were clearly having fun with the crew and Elena was deep in conversation with Dax, who appeared to be demonstrating the purpose of each rope attached to the foremast. Nicolette smiled, before turning her attention back on Alistair. “You have been through much, Alistair. More than your good heart deserves. I am immensely glad that you do have a source of joy in your life.”
 
Top