I’ve decided to flex my imagination a bit, and keep a “journal” from my Dragon Age:Origins latest character’s perspective. I haven’t written any fictional stories since I was 12, but it seemed like a fun project. This is part three. You can find part one here, and part two here
It was a long journey to Ostagar, longer than any I’d ever taken. Though I hardly noticed the time passing, I was so absorbed in my own misery. But, finally it was in view. As we entered, Duncan explained the history of the massive fortress and why it was fitting that we take our stand against the horde of Darkspawn here. Darkspawn are vile, ugly, evil monsters he told me, usually led by an Archdemon, that swarm over the land killing everyone and everything in their path. He informed me that only Gray Wardens can stop the blight, but before he got the chance to go into detail we were welcomed.
A Royal welcome so to speak. It was then that I found myself face to face with King Cailan. He hadn’t changed much since I’d last seen him, he was still handsome, quick to smile, and extremely confident. He had clearly become an adult, but still had so much child about him. The way he spoke of the Wardens was like Ohren regaling me with stories from his adventure books.
He was quick to recognize me, and ask after my family. I lowered my head, and quietly told him what had happened at the hands of Arl Howe. He promised justice, and that made me smile a bit. Some of my sadness lifted knowing His Majesty had always been a good man, and always followed through on his word. Before I could ask about my brother, Fergus, he told me he had been sent into the Korcari wilds on a scouting mission. Being in no hurry to break my brother’s heart, especially before a battle such as what lie ahead, I agreed it best to wait until after the battle ended.
After we parted company and headed toward the tents, Duncan told me to take some time to look around, and clear my head. I was then to go in search of another Warden by the name of Alistair. Duncan headed off, and my supposedly faithful hound followed with him, leaving me with my thoughts. Shadow had never left my side with anyone, let alone a complete stranger…this bodes well I thought. Either that or he suspected there was food to be had.
I stopped to look out over the Wilds at a particularly beautiful spot. Somewhere in the forest, was my brother. My poor, unknowing brother. How would I tell him what had happened back at home? How would I explain leaving mother and father and fleeing? Even with their blessing this guilt wouldn’t subside. I closed my eyes, and took a deep breath, trying to remember the meditations I had learned in our Chantry. Trying to find the inner strength I would need desperately. I thought of my mother’s sacrifice…for that is what got me here. That was the jolt I needed. This was her gift to me, her final one. And I cannot squander it. I would make her proud, I would avenge them. To do that, I must get moving. I could waste no more time sulking, and I could not let self blame take over my mind.
I strode into the camps, determined to get through whatever came next. I even took time to stop and talk to others that have gathered there. The first person I came across was a fellow by the name of Daveth. He was trying his absolute best to coerce a woman soldier into a romp before battle. Maker’s breath, does that old “we could die tomorrow” line even work? If a man were to try that line on me, he’d find my blade in places even the best healers couldn’t cure. I shook my head and continued my exploration, coming across an older mage named Wynne. She seemed a very kind woman, motherly in a way, and with the same determination my own mother possessed. I found myself comforted by her words, and wishing we could speak longer.
I walked a bit further and found who I was looking for. I stopped just out of view, but close enough to overhear his conversation with a mage. Apparently, he had been asked to deliver a message to this mage, but was taking the opportunity to harass him a bit. Sarcasm dripped from every word and I was surprised at myself when I had to stifle a laugh when he said “And here I was going to name one of my children after you. The Grumpy one.” I failed at my attempt to stifle the laughter however, and he realized I was there. He walked over and made a comment about how the blight brings people together, to which I was forced to tell him how strange he was. This was clearly Alistair. Traveling with him should prove interesting. I had a feeling I’d want to strangle him more often than not. But he did make me laugh for the first time since I’d left Highever, and that was not an easy feat.
The first urge to strangle him came within minutes, when he observed that there were not any women in the Wardens. Wonderful, here’s another Andraste’s gift to the female species type. It’s always the handsome ones. And my family wondered why I’d been just as happy without a man in my life. We headed back to Duncan, and I met the other two recruits. A knight from Redcliffe named Jory, and…Ser we might die tomorrow. Wonderful. It was then I myself found myself wishing for women in the Gray Wardens.
As we gathered, Duncan, having heard about the previous conversation with the mage, reminded Alistair that we had to keep the peace with everyone, and I saw something else in this slightly arrogant sarcastic man. I saw respect and admiration in his apology to Duncan. Something I felt myself. Bt first impressions being what they are, I was surprised to see it from Alistair. I was looking forward now to being a Warden, and getting on with the joining ritual. But first, it was off to the wilds to gather what we needed. Blood of the darkspawn themselves, as well as some old documents in a long abandoned ruin.
Finally…something to take out my still burning rage upon. None of us except Alistair knew what the ritual really entailed, it’s very secretive, but I trusted Duncan, and would do what I must. Even if that meant showing what I had truly been trained as behind closed doors.
I understand secretive. Only a few people knew the skills I possessed, and all but Duncan, and my brother had already taken the knowledge to the grave that bastard Howe had driven them to.