When Mahariel woke in the morning, Anders was gone. She rose slowly, the urge to stay in bed dragging her down. The sheets smelled like him, smelled like his coat had. She let her head rest on her pillow for what felt like hours after she had woken up, completely lifeless. The previous evening felt like a dream. Only now did the weight of Anders' words sink in, only now it it fully absorb into her mind what he had confessed to. Former friend and Warden or not, Justice was a spirit, a creature of the Fade. Fenris, though crass, had known the truth: Anders was an abomination of some kind, and he was not fully in control.
She thought back to Wynne, wise and gentle Wynne, whose own life was only allowed to continue due to the kindness of one of those Fade-beings. Mahariel was conflicted, and her stomach was in knots. She sat up slowly, the air in the dark room hot and constricting on her naked skin. Dressing lethargically, sore from drinking and fighting and making love, she wondered if those three words he'd offered her were worth fighting the battle against the spirit inside him. Was he even winning?
It would have been easier if she didn't want so badly to love him back.
Turning her mind away from personal matters, she sat down to papers and ink.