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Unrest In The Alienage [Closed]

Alistair Theirin

King of Ferelden
Canon Character
Noble
Grey Warden
Post DAI Timeline
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
82
#1
((Solace, 31 Dragon; Denerim Alienage; Falon Varos ))

Of all the atrocities that Loghain had committed since abandoning King Cailan and the Grey Wardens at Ostagar, this had to be the worst.

Alistair had never given a lot of thought to the elves. The ones around Redcliffe had maybe been poorer than some of the humans, but to a kid sleeping in the stables, it wasn’t exactly a going concern. The Chantry had worked hard to instill in him that elven mages were just like human mages: bad. And there had been a couple of elves in the Grey Wardens, but they’d been treated no differently than anyone else. Nothing had prepared him for what he saw in the Denerim alienage.

Houses that Eamon wouldn’t have kenneled a dog in gave barely adequate shelter to families of six or more, often with three and four generations huddled under a single, leaking roof. The available food consisted of rotten and molded discards from the vendors in the Market District, shoved through the gates each evening because the elves were no longer allowed to leave the alienage to do frivolous things like earn money to buy food … or even to go out and snare a rabbit outside the city walls. Just like they weren’t allowed to carry weapons that would allow them to fight back when some human man decided to take an elven girl - or boy - to his bed whether they wanted to go or not.

The more he heard, the more he saw, the more elves that cringed back as he drew near, watching him with a mixture of suspicion and loathing, the angrier Alistair had gotten. Aedan’s jaw had been similarly clenched in outrage, and Leliana had looked caught between anger and sorrow. Only Morrigan had been unaffected - no great surprise - remarking that such was the fate of those who chose to be sheep. How in the Fade Aedan could bed that bitch -

Never mind.

The final indignity: after locking down the alienage in a quarantine to contain a plague likely started by forcing blight-tainted elven refugees to shelter in the alienage, Loghain had decided to address the resulting overcrowding and disease by selling them off to Tevinter slavers posing as healers come to tend the sick.

Ferelden’s regent selling off Fereldens to buy coin that would let him keep killing Fereldans. Taking the crown was still a terrifying thought, but Alistair was no longer digging his heels in quite so hard. He could hardly do worse than the current regime, right?

How about we not think too hard on that question?

Besides, there remained the distinct (and almost welcome) possibility that he might not survive the Blight to have a go at outdoing Loghain Mac Tir for the title of Worst King In Fereldan History. So, chin up, mate, and focus on the task at hand.

They needed proof. Because the word of starving, dying, abused elves would not be considered sufficient evidence for the nobles of the Landsmeet that the Hero of River Dane had turned slaver, nor would the bodies of the ‘Vints they had killed so far. Oh, they might rant and rave about the wrongs done to their own lands and sons, and that might be enough to tip the balance, on top of what they had found in Howe’s charnel house beneath the Arl of Denerim’s estate.

But if it didn’t, if the Landsmeet tipped against them, then they would likely be hanged as traitors, and completely separate from the fact that this would leave Ferelden with no Grey Wardens to face the Archdemon, that was not the way Alistair wanted to go out.

So … time to go for broke.

The warehouse on the riverfront was where Shianni told them that the healthiest of the alienage’s residents had been taken, ostensibly to protect them from the plague. He and Aedan stood ready while Leli picked the lock on the door, then waited for her to draw back and take up her bow before kicking the door in. They had long since perfected this routine: Aedan broke right, Alistair broke left, leaving an immediate opening for Leli’s arrows and Morrigan’s spells. Even at two to one odds, their tactics made short work of the eight Tevinters on the other side. As the last one fell, Alistair glanced around and felt his gut clench in renewed anger at the sight of half a dozen cages filled with frightened elves.
 
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Falon Varos

New Member
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
3
#2
((Hours earlier inside the rundown apartments...))
“Let go of us shem!”

Screamed a elven youth with dark hair as he struggled against a pair of Tevinter slavers that held him by the arms. In front of his pregnanted sister restrained by two more in the same matter. They were inside a small miserable room that belonged to the siblings until now. The slaver on the right sneered. “What you are going to do about it, cut us with your pointy ears?”

The foreigners laughed in mockery but the newly made captives weren’t amused. The older girl with a saddened expression, silently pleading with her brother to stop but to no avail. “You bastards will pay for this.” Falon Varos threatens with despairing rage only to be interrupted.

“We already have...In good coin.” Everyone turned and saw a fierce elven woman in Tevinter armor entering inside. The men grew more sober when she glanced at them in judgment. “What is the hold up here? This pair too much for you boys?”

“Uh no Devera. We were just having some fun with them that’s all.”

One of the soldiers answered in a nervous tone. Devera rolled her eyes in disgust. “Stop wasting my time or you lot will be joining the new merchandise in the cages.” Humiliated, the men acknowledge with nods and were about to drag the two Ferelden elves out but Falon pushed back and shouted at the woman commander in front of him a few feet away.

“How you could do this? To your own people!”

Devera stared back, eyes narrowed. Obliviously insulted by the statement she suddenly drew a knife and sliced downward at the lad’s face, causing him to cry out in pain. “Falon!” Screamed Elonni but held back by her captors while they looked on.

“I am Tevinter first and a servant of the Minrathous Circle second, those are the things that matter.” Devera explained as if scoffing a student. With a head gesture by her, the other slavers proceeded to take the siblings out of the room.

((Present))
In one of the crowded cages sat Falon and Elonni in the front. The teenager lowered his head downcast. We survived Howe’s purge only to be taken as slaves. Oh Maker why is this happening? Falon thought, bitterly at the situation. He squeezed his hands shaking all over with both fear and anger. A moment later gentle arms held him in a loving embrace.

“It’s going be okay.” Elonni whispered even though she herself was frightened as well. However, the young woman put on a brave face. Taking one of her hands, she lifted Falon’s chin to look at her. The older sibling’s heart broke, seeing the fresh scar cut across the left side of the face and worse still the despair in his eyes.

“No matter what’s happens Falon we’ve get through this I swear. My child and I will need you to be strong. Can you do that little brother?”

At first there was no respond. Slowly the conflicted Falon nodded with tears dripping down his cheeks, causing Elonni to ruffle his hair in comfort. Suddenly the door on the opposite end was forcefully opened by a party of intruders. Surprised the elven captives watched with utter shock as their eight captors rushed the intruders only to be slaughtered by them. Wide-eyed Falon watched it all happened, thinking.

By Andraste who are these people?!
 
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Alistair Theirin

King of Ferelden
Canon Character
Noble
Grey Warden
Post DAI Timeline
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
82
#3
“We need to get them out of there!” Alistair ran to the nearest cage, grabbing at the bars of the door and pulling, but the structure was well built and the lock strong, constructed for a single purpose: holding people. “Leli -”

“No.” Aedan’s voice stopped Leliana as she reached for her lockpicks, but in response to the protesting looks they both gave him, Alistair’s brother Warden explained. “If we let them loose, they could get caught in the middle of any more fighting. In there, they’re out of the line of fire, at least. We’ll get them out after all the ‘Vints are dead.”

Alistair found himself nodding. It made sense, of course, which was why Aedan was their leader: he thought with his head, not his heart. He’d likely make the better king, if you got right down to it, though he’d have a hard road convincing Eamon -

“What is the meaning of this?”

Alistair whirled, sword and shield ready, to see … an elf? … armored, wielding a bow, and backed up by four other ‘Vints. No cringing here; she faced them with the imperious demeanor of every other ‘Vint they had confronted, scowling at them like dogs who had just pissed on her newly mopped floor. “We were told there would be no interference from the authorities.”

“We’re not exactly the authorities,” Alistair drawled, feeling the anger in his gut burning hotter at yet another confirmation of Loghain’s complicity that would not be considered sufficient evidence by the Landsmeet.

“Who told you that?” Aedan demanded of her.

“Someone well above your authority,” the elf replied disdainfully. “Believe it or not, we have been given dispensation by your King to do everything we are doing here.”

“No Fereldan who would condone slavery is worthy to be our King!” Leliana countered angrily. “Taking people from their homes and families is despicable!”

The elf sneered at her. “You humans talk so very much about how wrong slavery is, but isn’t it funny how quickly the sight of gold can overcome such ideals?”

“What about you?” Alistair asked. “You’re an elf!”

“And this should make me kin to these dogs?” she replied, looking at the caged elves with disgust. “I am a Soporati of the Imperium; I was born free, and I will stay free, because I am strong. Those too weak to remain free deserve their fates.”

“No.” Aedan shook his head grimly. “This ends here.”

“How it ends is up to you,” the elf warned him. “I am here to end this slaughter, nothing more. I can offer you more gold than you will likely see in your lives to turn and leave now.”

Alistair shook his head, knowing Aedan’s answer before he spoke. “Not all Fereldans can be bought,” he declared, lunging forward with Starfang drawn. The bow proved to be a singularly bad choice for close quarters, and he was upon her before she could trade it out for the daggers at her hips, Alistair moving to engage the two ‘Vints who tried to stop him, catching sight of Leliana darting in to hamstring one of his opponents and managing not to flinch at the sight of a giant spider swarming toward the other two. Helpful it might be, but it was still creepy.

Five more down, and it was getting difficult to walk around with all the blood and bodies and parts of bodies scattered about, and it bothered Alistair a bit that it didn’t bother him more. Just business as usual, and getting sick at the sight of blood and guts would have meant him spending a lot of time heaving in a corner. Pretty much every day, in fact, so he just sent yet another silent request to the Maker that at some point in the not-too-distant future, this kind of violence would be reserved for special occasions every decade or so. Then he stepped over the bodies and parts, careful not to slip in the blood, to get to the nearest cage.

“Do you have any idea how many more are left?” he asked the elves within, his gaze falling on a teenaged boy with a fresh cut that looked to have come within a hair of costing him an eye. “Was she the leader?” He nodded toward what was left of the elf … which wasn’t much; Starfang was incredibly sharp, and at this point, Aedan was in no mood to take it easy on the ‘Vints. None of them were, but if they had killed the leader, they were going to be hard pressed to link this lot to Loghain in any way that would hold water in the Landsmeet.
 

Falon Varos

New Member
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
3
#4
To say that Falon was surprised would be a colossal understatement. Humans actually here to free them! Varos shook his head in denial while the new group talk among themselves. This can’t be. They must be rival slavers, trying to eliminate the competition. While the boy heard there were good humans out there, as Elonni kept insisting.

However, years of discrimination and abuse made it hard for him to believe so even now.

Further thought on the matter were interrupted when Devara appeared with her party, demanding answers. Grasping the iron bars, the elven youth’s grip tightened, enraged at the sight of her. The strangers and her exchanged heated words before the Tevinter woman turned toward the still captive elves. Where many of the others looked away in fear, Falon stared right back at her, with nothing but seething hatred. Only the cage that held him in prevented the lad from attempting a foolhardy rush at the slaver.

If only I was stronger, none of this would’ve happened.

The boy bitterly lamented within his mind, staring down at the bloodstained floor in disgust with himself. It was in that moment Falon heard Aedan’s reply to the bride Devara offered. Looking up with mouth wide gaping. Seconds later the Wardens and their companions engaged in combat with the elven slaver and her men. Blades were stab and sliced with arrows flying and to all the captives’ further amazement the black haired woman transformed into a giant spider.

It was over as soon as the bloodshed had ended. Falon still couldn’t believe what had just happened. Was this a dream he wondered. No, the boy decided this was real. The blond haired human then asked them if there were more Tevinters before locking with eyes with Falon.

They both then looked back at the mauled remains of Devara. A moment later Falon finally managed to speak. “There are a few more of them and that, damned bitch is not the one in charge.” Varos from the cage spit with utter contempt at the dead body for all to see before adding.

“The leader is a mage, but we don’t know his name.”
 

Alistair Theirin

King of Ferelden
Canon Character
Noble
Grey Warden
Post DAI Timeline
DAO/DA2 Timeline
Posts
82
#5
Despite his injury, the youth did not seem the least bit cowed - he was giving Morrigan a bit of a side-eye after she had changed back from spider to human form, but Alistair couldn’t blame him for that. His eyes burned with hate as he looked on the dead elf.

“There are a few more of them and that, damned bitch is not the one in charge.” He spat through the bars at the corpse; a few of his fellow prisoners murmured in approval or shock, but none were bold enough to follow suit.

“We’re going to get you out,” Alistair promised them all, “but first, we need to find the leader.”

“The leader is a mage,” the young man told him, “but we don’t know his name.”

“My name is Caladrius.

Sodding Void. Alistair whirled, bringing his shield up, but the mage - magister, the ‘Vints called them - who had entered with half a dozen armed guards fanning out behind him made no move to attack, his gaze sweeping impassively over the carnage before settling on Aedan in mild curiosity. “And you, I assume, are the Grey Wardens I have heard so much about.” He was a human, tall and as bald as a melon, sporting a neatly trimmed mustache and goatee, along with a bearing of supercilious arrogance that set Alistair’s teeth on edge.

“You’ve heard of us?” Aedan asked, and the man chuckled.

“Regularly,” he informed them with a theatrical roll of his eyes. “One can hardly get a word out of Regent Loghain besides ‘Warden’ these days. It has surpassed even ‘gold’ in popularity.”

Alistair felt a cautious surge of elation at the offhanded admission of an association with Loghain, but they needed more. “How do you know Loghain?” he challenged.

Dark eyes shifted to him, gleaming with knowing amusement. “Yes, you would be curious about that, wouldn’t you?”

“Just a bit,” Alistair drawled, hoping he hadn’t made a mistake by admitting it.

“I have heard that you are trying to erode his support among your nobles. That must be a difficult task, yes?” Caladrius went on, shaking his head with an expression of ersatz sympathy. “Like washing away a mountain. Perhaps you could use some help?”

That sounded promising. Or ominous. Or both.

“You have an agreement with Loghain, don’t you?” Aedan asked him.

“More of an arrangement, truth be told,” Caladrius replied with a negligent shrug. “One that disappears the moment angry, armed intruders storm my abode.”

His abode? Alistair tensed in outrage, but he didn’t need Leliana’s cautioning glance to know to let the magister keep running off at the mouth.

“There was always a limit to how long we would be able to operate here,” Caladrius obliged. “We have paid for many of Loghain’s troops, but once the Landsmeet is done, we become … inconvenient.”

“Inconvenient is never a good thing where Loghain is concerned,” Alistair quipped, his hand tightening on the hilt of his sword. “Just ask King Cailan … oh, wait: you can’t.”

“Indeed.” Another of those creepy chuckles. “I had no illusions on that score, and I have no intention of lingering to see the outcome, as I suspect that a new King would consider me more than inconvenient.” The look that Caladrius gave Alistair made it clear that he knew. Not that it was much of a secret any more. “So here is my offer: one hundred sovereigns from you for a letter bearing the seal and signature of the Teyrn of Gwaren, implicating him in all of this.”

Alistair felt his mouth drop open. Pay him? But Caladrius wasn’t done yet.

“Then we leave a few days earlier than planned, with our profits and remaining slaves, unharmed.”

No. Fucking. Way. The words died on Alistair’s lips as he looked at Aedan, saw the conflict in his friend’s face. That document, tying Loghain irrevocably to Tevinter slavers, would be the final torch on his pyre, and to get it without a further fight - All they had to do was be just like Loghain and let the end justify the means.

“That would make us no better than Loghain,” Aedan growled.

“I never said it would,” Caladrius responded with a snort. “I am simply hoping that the world is … full of pragmatists, shall we say? Even you must admit that it is a much better solution that more barbarism, yes?”

“Do we have a deal?”

Alistair held his breath, his mind screaming ‘NO!’, hoping that Aedan was feeling as barbaric as he was.
 
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