Wolves and Glowy Blue Things (Rewrite)
"Maker's breath, Hawke," Varric crooned as the last man fell dead at her feet. "You do get results, don't you?"
Ryann gave him a cocky two fingered sault, grinning. "That's what I'm here for." She announced cheerily before scanning the group. "Everyone all right?"
They were all blood splattered; the elf she had recently added to her ever-growing band of friends and comrades had the most, evident that his aid was well worth his snarky comments about magic. His gorgeous blue markings were dimming now that the fight was done and he was in the process of securing his broadsword on his back when she had spoken. As though realizing her attention was on him, he curtly nodded then ducked his head, almost embarrassed at her attentive gaze, unaware of how adorable that movement made him.
Tearing her eyes away from the handsome white-haired elf, Ryann blinked, trying to remember what she was doing. Oh right, her gray eyes darted to the others in the group. Varric waved her concern away, indicating mutely like Fenris that he was uninjured. Amusingly enough the dwarf seemed more concerned that one of the bandits might have nicked his crossbow.
Bethany smiled weakly at her sister when the rogue finally looked at her. The drain of the battle was clear by the pale color of her. "Let's not run into any more of these caves today, shall we? I ran out of mana potions." Now that she said something Ryann noticed that her younger sister was leaning a little heavy on her staff, trying to regain her strength after burning, freezing, and zapping through the cave's never ending supply of stupid.
"But we'll miss all the fun." She teased, earning her a roll of Bethany's amber eyes. "Fine." Sighing dramatically as though it was an inconvenience, Hawke grinned, noticing the elf's bemused look out of the corner of her eye. "Just for you." Turning to the cave she rubbed her hands together. "Loot the bodies, see what goodies they have for us, maybe we'll get lucky and they'll have a secret stash of money just for us." Ryann wagged her eyebrows.
"Aveline will want to know about them." Bethany said, ignoring her sister.
Varric started rooting through the corpses alongside Hawke. After several minutes of coming up with very little, she sighed, blowing a strand of dark brown hair out of her eyes and giving a playful pout.
"Silly bandits don't have any treats." She stood, scanning the room.
"I don't know about you," Varric announced pocketing a few odds and ends. "But I could use a drink at the Hanged Man."
"You always want a drink, Varric." Bethany chimed.
Something in the corner of the room caught Hawke's eye; a smile spread on her lips as she moved determinedly toward it, almost dancing around the bodies.
"Find something, sister?" The mage followed Ryann's gaze and then laughed. "Of course, you would find the only glowy blue thing in this whole place."
"I like glowy blue things." was the only retort Hawke had and she could feel her cheeks burn when she realized she shouted that just as she walked by Fenris.
Glaring at her sister who seemed oblivious to what she had just made Ryann admit, the rogue skirted around the last few of the dead bodies, heading toward the table that held the amulet she was determined to claim along with a few random other items.
Varric shouted just as she reached for the necklace. "Hawke, look out!"
His warning, however, was a moment too late. In the final step in front of the table there was a soft chink noise and then her world exploded in pain. Letting out a cry, Hawke collapsed to the ground, hand shoot toward her leg. Tears blinded her sight and her head swam; the world around her turning white as a buzzing sound echoed in her ears.
"Stop pulling at it!" Bethany's frantic voice sounded hollow and far away.
Someone was touching her hands, trying to stop her fumbled attempts to yank the trap off her ankle. A support slid behind her and circled her, wrapping around her wrists and pulling her fighting hands away.
"Be still." A commanding voice penetrated the pain.
Breathing in sharply, Ryann leaned back into the support, letting out a few choice curse words as the hard metal was removed from her ankle. Slowly her world righted itself and she saw Varric tossing aside a metal claw trap.
"I hate you. I hate all of you." The words spilled out of the rogue, unintentionally causing the dwarf to freeze but she wasn't looking at him. "I'm going to kill you; melt you into scrap metal and make all your friends watch."
Bethany was working the straps on Ryann's boot, her hands wet with blood. It took Hawke a moment to realize it was hers.
"Then I'm going to take that scrap metal that was once you and give it to a dragon as a chew toy." Ryann was forced to stop her tirade at the trap when a wave of agony shot up her leg as Bethany removed her boot.
Her head fell back as she squeezed her eyes shut, clenching her fists. A cold hand alive with magic wrapped around the wound on her ankle. Without meaning to, Ryann spasmed, trying to move away but the arms that circled her held her firm, the hands tightening their grasp on her wrists as she fought to free them.
The tingling sensation she had always felt when healing magic was used burned hot around her ankle. Slowly the pain ebbed away until it was minuscule, leaving her feeling numb, not in the leg but in general. Ryann blinked, staring at her sister as she leaned back on her heels, a distinctly pallor look settling on Bethany's face.
"That's the best I can do." the mage whispered shaking her head.
The hands that held her wrists relaxed, intending to let her go but somewhere along her struggles Ryann had taken to clinging to them and for some reason couldn't figure out how to let them go.
"Sister? Can you move your toes?"
Quirking a grin at the mage, Ryann winked. "Yes, but I refuse to play 'this little piggy.'"
The hard frown Bethany gave her caused the rogue to instantly obey and wiggled her toes. Pain shot up through her ankle, forcing the grin off her lips and causing Ryann to clench the hands again, gritting her teeth as to not cry out.
"I don't think I'll be dancing anytime soon." The rogue joked lamely. Subconsciously she giggled to herself; 'lamely'.
Glaring at her, Bethany fumbled at her potions pouch, attempting to ignore Ryann's glib comments. Shaking her head in irritation, she looked at the others. "I'm out of health potions, do either of you have any?"
Varric grimaced and shook his head. "I used my last one when the bandit caught me from behind, sorry Sunshine."
Ryann was suddenly very aware that the support she was leaning on was moving. Looking up her mind sluggishly connected the dots. She was leaning against Fenris. Her heart beat faster and skipped a beat all at the same time. Imagine Isabela's face when she told the pirate that the hot elf had literally held her in his arms.
Heat stirred in the rogue. She liked being in his arms. Fenris was surprisingly comfortable. Ryann idly wondered what he would look like without all the spikey armor. All taut muscle and glowing blue markings—all right, maybe the pain was affecting her a little more than she thought.
"Great." Bethany mumbled, giving up searching the bodies for the ever elusive elfroot potion. Taking a scrap of cloth, the mage tried to wipe the blood off her hands. "Bandages then?"
Varric passed some over causing Ryann to wonder exactly where the dwarf carried them. She bit back a hiss of pain as Bethany shifted her leg. Cold water splashed over her ankle causing a shiver to run through her, her hand reflexively tightening over the one she still had in her grip. As the blood was cleared away, Hawke was vaguely aware that there was still a wound on the leg surrounded by an already vibrantly showing bruise.
Absently she started to reach forward, unintentionally bringing the hand with her, wanting to poke the colorful spot. Simultaneous her sister batted her away and the hand stopped her inches from the skin.
"Don't poke it." Bethany scolded.
Falling back, Ryann frowned. She had always poked at her bruises, forcing the healing to take even longer; something about the multi-colored skin was just begging to be poked. Absently she looked at the hand she was holding, remembering once again that it was Fenris who was touching her.
Expertly her sister wrapped the white bandages around the wound, trying to cause as little pain as possible. A small stain of blood showed through the first two layers of gauze but disappeared as the third and fourth layer was wrapped. Tying the end off and securing the bandage, Bethany examined her work, ensuring that the wound was bound properly.
"All better?" Hawke asked childishly.
Bethany gave her a dark look.
"What?" she almost whined, smirking when her mabari matched her sound.
"What?" Bethany said exasperated. "You nearly lost your foot for that damned trinket of yours." She snapped, use to her sister making light of things.
Reminded of the loot, Ryann abruptly sat up, searching for the object in question. A smile spread on her lips as she swiped it off the table and slid it into her pocket. "But it's a pretty trinket." She defended.
Groaning Bethany shook her head. "I always said your obsession with glowy blue things was going to get you in trouble. You can't help but nick every one you see."
Hawke flushed, trying not to look back at Fenris. "How can someone lose a foot? I suppose it could fall off but can you actually lose the appendage?" Ryann rambled, grabbing for her boot.
"I suppose if you carry it around with you." Varric voiced, clearly enjoying her odd sense of humor.
"I can see it now." she waved her boot like it was an imaginary limb. "You think you disarmed me but 'tis only a flesh wound! Take that!" Hawke thrust her boot forward as though it were a weapon.
"You're five, I swear." Bethany rubbed her forehead. "You're five and you've just gotten into father's spirits again."
Ryann frowned, lowering her arm, ignoring the choked chuckle from behind her, the elf clearly trying to hide his amusement. "I was seven and you were two. You can't possibly remember that."
Varric barked in laughter. "You have got to tell me that story, Hawke."
Grinning she leaned forward. "Well my father had gone out to the barn to—"
"Not now!" Bethany groaned. "This is hardly the place for story time, sister."
Huffing as though Bethany had spoiled her fun again, Ryann mouthed 'later' to the dwarf before turning her attention back to her boot. She bit her lip, trying not to cry as she slid it on, the pressure on her injury caused a sharp throb of pain.
"I think I need new boots." She announced attempting to control the urge to poke her finger through the newly formed holes where the trap had gone through. Reaching up to the table, Hawke pushed herself onto her feet (or technically foot since she had yet to put pressure on her wounded foot.)
"You're not walking on that." Bethany half growled standing.
"I'm fine." she insisted taking a step forward. Hawke was unable to hide the flash of pain that flickered across her face. "See, hunky-dory. Let's get back home and you can get Anders to wave his magic fingers at me."
She glared at the dwarf, her face flushing when she realized the secondary implication of what she had said. "Shut up."
Bethany crossed her arms in front of her chest. "You wouldn't make it half way back to Kirkwall without collapsing." She challenged.
Ryann frowned; joking aside she had no desire to camp in the woods overnight. They were unprepared and she was little help if trouble came. "Fenris can carry me." She shot cheekily.
The elf choked, looking at her like a deer caught by a hunter. Thankfully he didn't seem offended by what she had just volunteered him for, only startled.
"Even if Fenris and I carry you, we won't make it before night comes." Arching her brow in a perfect imitation of their father, Bethany gave her a pointed look. "Are you suggesting we walk through the Wounded Coast at night with one of us injured and two incapacitated because they are helping the injured one?"
"All right, all right." Ryann bemoaned. "Just stop looking at me like that; you make me feel like father caught me convincing Carver to jump off the barn again."
Bethany just grinned. "You were being stupid that day too."
"Are we at least allowed to leave the cave, Miss Bethany?" Ryann teased sweetly. "Or are we to make camp amongst the dead bodies? I think I'll call that one Steve."
"Steve?" Varric questioned.
"It's a pretty name."
Earning a grimace from Bethany made Hawke laugh. Securing her twin lyrium imbued glowing blades on her back; Ryann took a hesitant step forward. Wincing, she teetered, sharp pain shooting up from her ankle. In less than a second a hand steadied her, preventing her from falling. Smiling she met Fenris' unwavering gaze, desperately trying to ignore how her heart started beating faster at his touch.
"Off to hunt for a campsite, then?" Varric questioned idly, eying the fact that even though she now had her balance, Fenris still had not let her go.
Her dog let out a happy bark causing Fenris take a step back. Hawke silently cursed her mabari; wishing that he hadn't caused Fenris to move away. "I think he wants to choose the campsite." as though agreeing, he let out another bark. "Lead the way boy." Ryann waved at the dog.
It was slower moving than she expected; much to the chagrin of her mabari who was now circling the group as though herding them. While each step no longer sent sharp pains up her leg, Hawke had to admit her balance was leaving something to be desired. A numbing ache had started and she was growing increasingly aware that she was weaving slightly, needing to use the trees to keep upright.
More than once she stumbled, biting back a cry as the splintering pain returned for a brief moment. Each time she found Fenris catching her and helping her stay on her feet. Wordlessly he would nod at her whispered thanks and continue to trudge on next to her; alert for the next time she tripped.
Suddenly her dog burst past her, throwing her limping form off balance completely. Two strong arms shot out and steadied her, encasing her between them. The tips of her ears burned as her heartbeat quickened again; almost ashamed at how much she liked Fenris touching her.
"Thanks." Hawke used the trunk of a tree to regain her equilibrium.
Fenris acknowledged her and stepped away, the edge of his lips tugging into a faint smile.
Bethany shook her head at the mabari who was happily trotting back to them. "Sit, sister. This is as good a place as any to set camp. Get off that ankle."
Giving her sister a mock salute, Hawke eased herself down the tree, laughing when her dog pressed his cold wet nose against her palm, seeking praise. "You're a good boy aren't you." she cooed. He trembled with excitement. "Did you make sure that evil rabbit wasn't contaminating our campsite?"
"Well he just scared off the potential dinner." Varric reasoned.
Giving the dwarf a grin, Hawke shrugged. "If you ask him nicely he'll bring it back."
Bethany waved her hands. "No, no," she insisted. "He'll bring it covered in dog slobber and half mauled."
"Adds flavor," Ryann said cheekily.
Ignoring her, Bethany looked pensive. "We'll need some firewood," she reasoned. Reaching for her canteen, she grimaced; it was half empty. "Some water would be nice too."
"Food would be better, maybe a nice big roast with sweet rolls," Hawke chimed in as she made herself comfy against the tree by removing her weapons and setting them aside. "Cooked corn on the side with a baked potato."
"Stop that, Hawke." Varric ordered. "You're making me hungry."
"That's me, always happy to help."
Bethany crossed her arms in front of her chest. "Well, Miss Helpful, what do you propose we do about food? None of us were expecting to be stuck out here overnight."
Hawke's witty smile changed into a more serious look. "I'd suggest seeking out a water source and going from there. If there aren't safe berries nearby than I'm sure you'd run across an animal or two. I'd help but," she waved to her injured ankle. "Someone has forbidden me from walking on it."
"The bear trap went right through your foot." Bethany defended, tears springing to her amber eyes. "It cut your artery, sister!"
Both Varric and Fenris stiffened, looking at the mage sharply as though neither of them had realized the wound was that serious. Perhaps they hadn't.
"If I hadn't been there—" Bethany's voice cracked.
"I know, Beth." The thanks was evident in Ryann's tone.
Bethany huffed, crossing her arms in front of her. "You always act like everything is a joke; like nothing bothers you. I love you sister but sometimes you drive me mad. You could have died today and all you do is laugh about it."
"You're serious enough for the both of us." Hawke said with a grin but this time the spark of humor didn't quite reach her gray eyes. "I'm sorry for worrying you, Beth. Really, I'm fine. Ankle hurts and I'm fairly certain that we just got set back in our savings for the Deep Road due to the need for new boots but I'll heal. Besides," she attempted to tease. "If I don't get better maybe you'll get to protect me for a change."
"That was almost profound, Hawke. Say it again so I can write it down." Varric broke the silence between the sisters.
Ryann stuck her tongue out at the dwarf.
"Children, the lot of you." Bethany couldn't hide her smile at the two rogues. "I suppose we should collect some firewood." Ever the problem-solver, the mage immediately moved the subject onto their next issue.
"Firewood should be fairly easy, you know, seeing as we're in a forest," Ryann said with a grin. "However I don't want you wandering alone, Beth. We ran out of lyrium potions and I don't want you caught unprepared."
Bethany gave her sister a petulant look that reminded Hawke far too much of Carver. "I'll be fine." she insisted.
Hawke frowned. "Famous last words there, Beth. Take someone with you or I'll have my dog pin you to the ground."
As though to affirm that he would follow through on her statement, her mabari let out a happy bark, wiggling his haunches as though readying to pounce.
"Fine." Bethany glared at her. "Varric, will you escort me as my sister seems to think I'm unable to protect myself?" Before the dwarf even had a chance to respond, she continued. "Fenris, what would you like to do, collect wood, dinner, or water?"
The elf's mossy green eyes flickered to Hawke and then returned to Bethany. "Leaving Hawke alone seems unwise."
"Hey!" she objected loudly. "I'm not dying. I can protect myself just fine." Her mabari let out a happy bark causing her to point at the dog. "See, he agrees."
"He's a dog, Hawke." Fenris reminded her, amusement tinging his deep voice.
"She'll be fine." Bethany purposefully repeated the word, mocking her sister with a pointed look about the rogue's previous statement. "Besides, Little Wolf will be with her. I've seen him take down darkspawn and I doubt there will be anything here quite as dangerous."
Ryann felt her stomach drop, eyes darting to Fenris; watching him rear back and look at Bethany in alarm. There it was. For two weeks she had avoided saying her dog's name around him; ever since he told her the meaning of his name and now, of course now of all times the elf had to learn the mabari's name. Why did the Maker hate her?
"Little wolf?" Fenris' brogue was dark.
Bethany motioned toward the mabari who was rolling on his back, begging for a tummy rub. "The dog, his full name is Little Wolf, testament of my sister's genius as a child; naming a puppy 'wolf'." She shook her head, smiling at a memory. "You didn't know his name?" Bethany asked.
Hawke resisted the urge to whistle nonchalantly, trying to ignore the heavy gaze Fenris had leveled in her direction. Instead she reached forward, acquiescing to her dog's request for a belly rub. "If you want to find food and water before nightfall you should go soon, last thing you need is to be fumbling around in the dark."
Narrowing her eyes at her sister, Bethany frowned, studying the rogue. Shrugging she looked at the two men. "Who wants to do what?"
Fenris hadn't moved; his intense eyes glued to Ryann.
Varric gave Bethany a large smile. "How about you and I go and find food and water, Sunshine? See if Hawke's theory about food is correct," The dwarf wagged his eyebrows. "That way Broody can stay close to camp looking for sticks and if Hawke gets into trouble she'll just have to let out a scream for help."
"Scream? What am I a damsel in distress?"
Varric winked at her. "I'd never call you a damsel, Hawke." He teased. "Have you ever hunted before, Sunshine?" he asked leading the mage off in a direction he seemed to have picked at random.
Biting her lip, Ryann suddenly felt very nervous alone with Fenris. Her heart pounded in her chest as she dared to look up. Their eyes met and for a moment the world fell away just as it had the first time they saw each other. Was it possible to get lost in a person's eyes? Ryann thought so. Fenris' mossy-green orbs were always so full of an intensity that they seemed to swallow her whole, making her forget that anything besides the hot lyrium elf existed.
It took a wet sensation on her hand to jerk her back into reality. Grimacing, Hawke wiped the dog slobber off on her pant leg.
"Having a fire before night would probably be good," she ventured, hoping that it would distract him. Maybe, somehow, looking for firewood would make him forget her dog's name. Yes collecting little scraps of wood is going to magically make him forget that she had not told him that the meaning of his name and her dog's actual name were the same. Well maybe not magically but she could hope he'd somehow forget it, right?
He hesitated, looking from her to the mabari and then back. Giving a curt nod, Fenris disappeared into the trees.
Ryann let out a moan and leaned her head against the tree, closing her eyes. Why did he have to find out now of all times? Why not in Kirkwall where she could slink off to the Hanged Man and drink if he took offense to it? What did she ever do to the Maker to have Him curse her so? If only she hadn't gone after that stupid trinket.
Sighing, she fished the item she nearly sacrificed her foot for out of her pocket. It wasn't anything expensive or especially intricate. Running her thumb over it, Hawke unconsciously smiled, feeling the warmth and thrum of the lyrium embedded in the blue stone. She loved the vibrant blue glow of lyrium.
The charm itself was silver or pewter, shaped into what she originally thought was an oval but now seemed to be a bud hanging on a simple leather strap. Situated in the center was the circular blue stone, glowing in all its glory. Pushing the filth away, she felt grove designs along metal, swirling out from the stone in a pattern eerily similar to Fenris' markings.
Closing her hand around it, Ryann tossed it aside. Stupid thing nearly cost her, her foot. Shifting, she picked up her weapons, making at face at the blood staining them and marring the glowing blue lines.
By the time Fenris returned with firewood, she had managed to worm a piece of scrap cloth from her back pocket and started cleaning one of the two daggers. Using a little of the water from her canteen, she carefully wiped the blade.
Hawke was painfully aware of the handsome elf's presence as she worked; so much so that she nearly nipped her fingers on the edge of her dagger more than once as he started the fire. If she kept ignoring him maybe she could pretend that Bethany hadn't just spilled the incredibly awkward truth.
She had planned on telling Fenris the truth but there never had been a good time. By the time she realized that it was going to cause a problem she had grown too addicted to his shy smiles and deep voice and the idea that something as dumb as a name might cause her to miss out on seeing and hearing them Ryann had taken to avoiding the topic all together.
Her mabari's name was stupid anyway. A childish homage that—
"His name is Little Wolf?" the elf's deep brogue caused goosebumps to trail down her arm. The dog lifted his head at his name, tongue lolling out happily as if to say 'what'.
Ryann paused, fighting the smile that his voice often brought to her lips. "I didn't know how to tell you." she finally admitted quietly.
Their friendship, though new, had been steadily growing as each day passed; mostly due to her almost nightly visits. The visits had started not long after she took him on his first job with the group; when she had returned home she and her mother had a rather loud argument. Not wanting to answer Varric's pestering questions; Ryann wandered until she found herself at the mansion Fenris was squatting in. They had talked for more than an hour that night and she had been back almost every night since.
On her third or fourth visit he had revealed that he did not know who he was and that Fenris might not even be his real name. When she heard the meaning of the name the Blight-damned magister gave him Ryann had felt her stomach drop. His reaction to her mabari's name could either be minimal or dark and brooding.
His brow was furrowed as he watched her dog. Sensing the assessment, Wolf stared back. "What possessed you to name him such?" Fenris finally asked.
Hawke let out a slow sigh. "It's kind of a long story." she admitted motioning for him to sit. He did, hesitantly perching near her on an exposed root that could function like a bench. "I told you that we moved around a lot when I was younger," Ryann began. "Trying to stay a few steps ahead of the Templars made for an interesting childhood at times." She ran her thumb down the vibrant blue glow on her dagger, unconsciously comparing it to the glow that would cover the elf beside her.
"Often we would live a little while outside a town, close enough for trade, but far enough to escape the notice of most law and Chantry peons." She paused in her cleaning, remembering. "I often loved sneaking out, mostly to the woods or fields to practice swordplay. Beth and Carver were four and mother had her hands full while father kept busy in the fields. I was such a cocky brat I thought nothing could hurt me.
"One day I was cutting through a different part of the woods when I came across a wounded wolf. He must have been lying near the rocks there for days and by the time I came across him, he was too weak to move. I thought about killing him, bringing home the skins and meat but when he looked at me," she hesitated, stealing a glance at Fenris.
He met her gaze, silently waiting for her to continue.
"I couldn't do it." Ryann admitted. "The next day I came back with some meat and herbs. I laced the meat with something to put him to sleep and tossed it to him. When he was out I bandaged his wound. Then I waited,"
Fenris blinked, surprise and caution on his face
Smiling at him, Hawke nodded. "I realize now how foolish it was. If a larger animal came in search of prey, drawn by the blood, I would have been done for. Or even if the wolf decided I was enemy enough to attack, even injured and weak." She could still close her eyes and remember that day vividly; the small lithe girl sitting a few yards away, curled into her knees, waiting for the wolf to wake.
"When he woke he growled at the bandages I had used, not sure what they were. Then he spotted me. He simply stared at me." Ryann whispered, just like you do her mind evilly added. "I guess he was assessing me or something but eventually he snorted and then went to sleep. I went back every chance I could spare, bringing him what food I could sneak. Soon I was able to change his bandages without putting him to sleep."
Setting aside the cleaned dagger, Hawke exchanged it for the other. "Once he was well enough, he began to follow me. He'd watch me practice, teach me new ways to sneak up on prey, even escort me home." Ryann couldn't help but smile as she remembered her mother's panicked reaction at seeing the wolf. "It might be silly but he was my first friend, I talked to him about everything."
Her face darkened. "Then one day Templars came. Father was in the fields and mother was in town with Carver. Bethany was five and the Templar scared her so badly she performed her first magic." Ryann wished she could forget that day. Bethany had been so frightened that she lit the lead Templar's hair on fire, causing the other two to panic. "One of the Templars used what I later learned was Silence but it hurt Bethany, frightened her. I knocked him over the head with the broom and ran."
A wry smile was on Fenris' lips, probably picturing her hitting someone easily three times her height with a broom.
"We almost made it to the fields through the woods when one of the Templars caught us." Ryann absently touched her forearm, caught up in the memory. "He wrenched me away from Bethany so hard my arm broke. The Templar threatened me, told me that I was going to do exactly what he wanted me to or he'll kill my sister."
Fenris stiffened, his mind obviously connecting the implications. At the time her innocent mind hadn't grasped all that the man could do but now, older, she knew and thanked the Maker every day for her hero.
"The wolf came out of nowhere, tackling the Templar to the ground. He bit the Templar's hand clean off. I remember him looking at me and growling. I tried to get him to come with us, run as the Templar was screaming but he knocked me over like he was about to attack me too. I realized he was protecting me the only way he knew how but no one had ever protected me before; it was always keep my father's secret safe, protect my sister, keep an eye on my brother. No one had ever tried to keep me safe."
The rogue sighed, raking her hand through her brown hair trying to dismiss what she had accidentally shared. Not even Bethany knew how much Ryann longed to have someone protect her, the way Hawke always seemed to do for others. "Anyway I grabbed Bethany and ran to my father. The rest is sort of a blur; we abandoned the fields and went to town to find mother and Carver. Left with a merchant's wagon within the hour, didn't even stop at our house."
Blinking rapidly, surprised at how much emotion was getting stirred in her at remembering her wolf. "I never saw the wolf again; I liked to imagine he was free, roaming the woods, hunting Templars and maleficar." Sadness tinted her voice enough that her mabari let out a low whine, nudging her leg with his nose.
Laughing, she set down her weapon and patted her dog on the back. "When this mabari chose me less than a year later he was nothing but a pup, all ears and cuteness." The dog let out a yip. "For days all I called him was boy, no name ever seemed to fit right until he followed me to town one day," A smile brightened her whole face. "Some bullies started harassing me, pushing me around and such when this little guy," He wagged his stubby tail. "Pounced forward and chomped down on one of their ankles."
Fenris smiled, his eyes watching her with intensity.
"The kid was fine but the way this boy rushed into protect me no matter the cost," Hawke shrugged, smiling at the animal. "After that Wolf just seemed right. He was so much smaller than the wolf I had known so I called him Little Wolf. I've always had an attraction to protective wolves since."
Her jaw clamped shut audibly when she realized what she had said. Ryann was determined to look elsewhere; why did she always tell this blasted elf everything? She never told anyone everything, she, like Varric, loved to embellish her stories. What was it about the handsome white-haired warrior that made her spill her guts?
Fenris shifted, picking something off the ground and offering it to her. "And glowing blue things?" he said the question idly, flicking his gaze toward her daggers and then back to her face.
Hawke's cheeks burned red. Reaching out she took the amulet she nearly lost her foot over, heart pounding as their fingers brushed each other. "Yes," she admitted meeting his gaze. "I like protective wolves and glowy blue things." the flirtatious words fell from her lips before she could stop them.
His deep chuckle caused her bones to melt.
"And what about you?" Ryann challenged before she lost her nerve. "You know what I like." Lost once more in those deep mossy eyes, she smiled. "What do you like?"
Fenris held her gaze in the intense way he always looked at the world with. "The sharp-witted rogue who speaks her mind and cares about what I think."
Ryann Hawke bloomed into a smile, turning back to her glowing blue dagger.
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