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I Don't Think So [Solo - Complete]

Nathaniel Howe

Warden Commander of Ferelden
Canon Character
Grey Warden
Post DAI Timeline
DAO/DA2 Timeline
((OOC: Cloudreach 22, 9:35, Afternoon, City of Amaranthine))

Typical, Nathaniel thought to himself as he was forced to wait outside Knight-Commander Benjamin’s office. The Knight-Commander always relished in making Nathaniel wait before their appointments. Rendon employed a similar tactic during many of his meetings. The message conveyed always the same: my time is more valuable than yours.

He gazed outside a window of the small parlor as he waited. The streets of Amaranthine bustled with activity during midday. As much as Nathaniel had not looked forward to this meeting, he had enjoyed his return to Amaranthine. Though city was not without her ghosts, Amaranthine was home. The city grounded him like no other and reminded Nathaniel of his roots. Not just those of his father or grandfather, but the Howes that came before. This was his land and no templar would deign to rule in his stead.

Knight-Commander Benjamin held a grudge against the Howes since Nathaniel and he were young boys. When Nathaniel heard Benjamin was returning to Amaranthine after Adara’s joining, he had hardly been surprised. The man would do anything to make the Howes suffer.

Benjamin Kincaide was the eldest son of the Bann Fendrel. Bann Fendrel had his title and lands stripped from him by Rendon Howe after Fendrel insulted Rendon during a hunt. Nathaniel never learned the details of the insult, but knowing his father as he did, he suspected the insult was well earned. Fendrel, disgraced and upset over his losses, hung himself a week later. His mother having died the year before, Benjamin was left an orphan and sent to the Chantry where he eventually trained and became a templar.

As boys, Benjamin and Nathaniel had played together a few times and he might have even called Benjamin a friend. That friendship no longer existed. Enmity had taken its place.

“Warden-Commander or do you visit me as Arl Howe today? I never know which of your many titles you are wearing on a single day,” Knight-Commander Benjamin said, not effort made to conceal his disdain, as he opened the door to his office finally.

Nathaniel turned from the window and looked upon Benjamin. Both men dressed their parts today. Nathaniel's armor that marked him as Warden-Commander much as Benjamin’s designated him as Knight-Commander. A humorless smile cornered Nathaniel’s mouth, “They are one and the same.”

“Very well, Warden-Commander,” the templar stepped do the side and ushered Nathaniel into his office with a sweep of the hand. “What has brought you to darken my doorstep this afternoon?”

Nathaniel entered Benjamin’s office but did not take a seat. He had no plans to remain for long. Looking to the templar, he said, tone neutral, “I came to do you a favor.”

The comment drew the Knight-Commander’s brow upward. “And what favor would that be?”

Quite plainly, Nathaniel stated just what he would do for Benjamin. “I will allow you and your templars to remain in Amaranthine and not conscript every apostate you detain during your residence here.”

The templar scoffed, “You will allow us to remain? You have no power over the Chantry.”

“The Chantry? No. I would not wish to deprive the peoples of Amaranthine of the comforts they find in Chantry.” Nathaniel’s shoulders rose in a shrug. "But I do have the power to evict armed forces from my lands should I find them hostile to the interests of the arling.” He clasped his hands behind his back. “Your men harassed two of my Grey Wardens or do you deny that?”

Benjamin’s face pinched. He could make no such denials. They both knew that. “No, I do not.”

“I am willing to call this a…” He unclasped his hands, one flitting about in the air briefly, “…a simple misunderstanding and let it go for now. That is my favor to you as an old friend.” A decidedly unfriendly smirk took hold. “But if my wardens are harassed again, I will not be so understanding.”

Anger reddened Benjamin’s face. “You would not dare. The freeholders and Banns of the arling would not support such a decision.”

Nathaniel’s lips pursed as his brow rose and fell in indifference. “I would do it all the same. Grey Wardens, including our mages, are outside of your jurisdiction, Knight-Commander. You would do well to remember your place.” The words were meant to incite. Nathaniel had been furious upon reading of Muriel’s harassment. He wished Benjamin to feel some rage of his own.

“And you would do well to remember your place, Warden-Commander,” Benjamin snapped back, rage increasing the volume of his voice. “The Maker will judge you for this.”

A derisive snort touched Nathaniel’s lips, “The Maker judged me quite some time ago.” He let out a huff of air. “Good afternoon, Knight-Commander. A pleasure, as always."