The Untellable Tale of Bianca

Chapter 9

The Lacier estate is a huge sprawling monstrosity with high walls and armed guards patrolling the perimeter. Complex magical runes, disguised as decorative carvings, line the top of the fence as well as the pavers on either side of the wall. Even if someone manages to get past the outer perimeter and its guards, more guards circulate about the open courtyard, and the courtyard itself is several yards of open space which offers very little cover before reaching the house proper. And the home has just as many guards and runes as the outer fence. This is a family that has enemies and knows it. Fortunately, Triss knows of another way into the house.

She leads them to an underground drainage system the city uses. She lifts the grate and jumps down into the darkness. Bethany follows, splashing as she lands in hip deep water. She quietly makes a disgusted sound and joins Triss on the narrow walkway. The arched ceiling is easily six feet at its apex, and lined in brick. In the center of the tunnel runs a deep trough of water about four feet across. On either side of the water is a two feet wide walkway which is just inches about the water line. Sunlight filters in through grates spaced several feet apart.

“Well, this is…fragrant,” Isabela comments as she jumps down into the sewer lines with the rest of the party.

“Put on your big girl knickers and deal with it,” Triss grumbles as she leads the way through the maze of tunnels. “This is the only area guards don’t patrol, but there are still dangers.”

“What kind of dangers,” the mage asks.

“If we’re lucky just rats.”

“And if we’re unlucky,” Bethany isn’t sure she wants the answer and it’s evident in her voice.

“Centuries ago, some these tunnels were used the inter those who could not afford burial in the necropolis. As the city grew, more drain lines were needed. It was common for workers to accidentally uncover a small tomb holding dozens of corpses. They never resealed the crypts after all that’s not what they were paid to do. Rumor has it that the dead walk down here.”

“I’m kind of sorry I asked.”

Shuffling footsteps in the distance stops all talking and movement. Weapons are quietly drawn as the steps continue to approach. In the distance they can make out a figure shambling towards them in the darkness. As it nears they can make out more detail. The figure is human in in terms of height, but emaciated. Tattered rags barely hang on the withered frame. The left arm appears to be missing and the right hangs limply as it continues hobbling.

Breaths are held as the creature pauses as if it’s trying to decide which direction to go. It sways from side to side, its head lolls left and right as it shifts weight. After a few blood chilling moments, the creature turns around and heads deeper into the darkness. Once the footsteps fade into silence, people breathe again and continue their way.

“How many crypts were opened,” Bethany quietly asks.

“Hundreds, plus there are the dead bodies that are dumped down here for various reasons.”

“Oh,” is the small sound she makes in response.

“Sunshine, you really need to stop asking questions you don’t want the answer to.”

Triss pauses and pulls a torch from her pack. “We turn here,” her head indicates the dark passageway to her right. Even with the torch lit its flickering light does little to illuminate the corridor, but it does provide a small measure of comfort.

It feels like they walk for an hour, stopping occasionally for Triss to get her bearings and to listen for the dead roaming about. Finally they can see an alcove, faintly illuminated by light trickling in through a grate.

“There,” Triss extinguishes the torch into the water, and returns it to her pack. She begins guiding them across the running water to the hallway leading to the recess. As they near their goal the faint sounds of pained groans, agonizing screams and sobbing can be heard. The red haired elf is quick to turn to the others and raising a finger to her lips. She pauses just shy of the vent and listens. When she’s convinced that the coast is clear she whispers that she needs a boost up. Fenris steps forward and offers her his cupped hands.

“I’ll need to stand on your shoulders to open the grate,” her voice barely travels beyond the two of them. “Once I’m inside I’ll find something for you to climb up on.” Fenris nods and boosts her up. She grabs the grill, and hangs there until he can get beneath her. His strong hands firmly grip her calves and he silently signals that he’s ready to support her weight. She pops the grate, careful to make as little noise as possible and then she slips into the room.

After a few moments and section of rope falls into the cavern, and Isabela is the first to climb up, followed by Fenris. Varric helps Bethany up, but the mage lacks the upper body strength to pull herself up. She struggles for a couple of feet before Fenris is able to grab her and help her out of the hole. Finally the dwarf climbs up and takes in his surroundings and immediately wonders if all nobles have a torture chamber in their basements.

This specific room looks to be a small store room for various tools and devices as well as several bags and barrels. There is one doorway leading out, and Isabela is carefully peering into the main room, keeping watch. She quickly pulls her head back and signals that two guards are approaching. As they get closer the group can hear the men talk.

“Maker’s Breath, are all dwarfs this stubborn?”

“In my experience, yes,” a gruff voice answers with a chuckle.

“I’ve got 10 silvers that say she’ll break by the end of the week.”

“I’ve got 20 that say she won’t talk until we get that kid of hers.”

“Deal. Why is she here anyway?”

“By not asking, I stay outside of those cells. Get it?”

“Yeah. Yeah I do,” the younger voice sounds frightened.

Varric’s grip on his crossbow tightens; at this moment he wants little more than kill these two. It an act of sheer willpower that he remains rooted to his spot. He knows if he rushes forward he risks not only his life, but also those of his friends and Bianca.

As the voices pass, Isabela carefully peers around the corner and signals that the coast is clear. Cautiously the group enters the main room with weapons drawn. They keep their movements slow and silent as they move from cell to cell. One of the inhabitants reaches through the bars and grabs Varric’s coat pulling the dwarf close.

“Help me,” the man says. “I’ll do whatever you want, just please get me out of here.”

“I’m looking for a female dwarf. Red hair, blue eyes, small tattoo on her right cheek. Tell me where she is, and I’ll get you out.”

“Yes, yes, yes. I know her. I know her. She’s here,” the battered man is excited at the prospect of escape, but is still careful to keep his voice low.

“Where,” Varric’s hushed voice betrays his impatience.

“Through there. Through there,” he releases the dwarf and points to an archway leading into another room. Triss takes the lead and heads into the chosen room, her grip tightens on her bow, the arrow notched.

“No, no, no, no, no,” the man’s eyes are wild with desperation as he reaches again to grab for Varric, but the dwarf easily evades.

“Once I get her out, I’ll free you.”

“You promised,” he hisses.

“It’s ok,” Bethany crouches down next to the man’s cage. “I won’t let them leave without you.” She crouches down to assure the prisoner of her sincerity. She looks up and sees Isabela pressing her back to the wall, and carefully peeking out of the small window in the door. Fenris guards the opposite side of the door. The dark skinned woman angrily gestures for Bethany to stop talking. The mage follows the pirate’s lead and unsheathes one of her swords. The dark haired mage gestures for the prisoner to remain silent.

“Varric,” Triss hisses his name and gestures towards a small cage suspended over a shallow pit of glowing embers. The cage is just high enough that the heat won’t kill the occupant, but it will make them extremely uncomfortable. Weak, pained groans are coming from the cage, but they can’t make out the prisoner. Triss rushes over to the controls and maneuvers the cage safely on the ground. At the first sight of red hair Varric wastes no time in picking the lock and pulling the unconscious woman from the cage.

“Bianca,” he gently runs a thumb over her casteless tattoo. “Please, open your eyes.” She lays unresponsive in his arms. “Come on, Beautiful, please, don’t leave me. Not now. Not like this.” He gently shakes her.

Her eyes sluggishly open and focus on Varric. He smiles in relief, but relief soon turns to panic as she goes limp in his arms. Triss is quick to approach and places her fingers on the dwarven woman’s neck; checking for a pulse.

“She’s alive, but we need to get her out of here.”

He gathers her in his arms, cradling her close to his chest as if holding her close would stay death’s call. As he walks through the doorway, he makes a soft hiss, to get Isabela’s and Fenris’ attention before heading towards the grate.

“Isabela,” Bethany whispers, refusing to leave the prisoner. “We promised.”

The pirate rolls her eyes and groans, but relents without argument. It doesn’t take her long to pick the lock and once she does she grabs the man by his tattered shirt and hauls him into the small store room. They slip down through the grate, pausing long enough to secure their exit behind them.

“Let me carry her,” the man offers, holding his arms out to carry Bianca. Varric’s eyes narrow.

“Look, there are nasty things down here and I don’t have a weapon. My only hope of escape is to follow you and if I carry her then at least I’m helping, right? I won’t be useless.”

“If you drop her I will break your legs and leave you here to rot,” Varric cannot argue the man’s logic, and begrudgingly hands his lady over.

“Got it, dropping is bad. Lead the way.”

“No, swooping is bad. Dropping her is worse.”

As they make their way through tunnels, pausing long enough for Triss to light a torch. The group moves in silence through the darkness, everyone keeping an ear out for wandering dead. The only source of light in this part of the tunnels is the torch in Triss’ hand and its flickering glow. After half an hour of trudging through the darkness a faint scraping sound is heard in a corridor to their left. Everyone stops and listens; again, beyond the dancing light of the torch the shuffling sounds of footsteps and the sound of something dragging are heard.

The noise gets closer and it’s clearly hobbling footsteps and something metal dragging along the stone floor. The sound grows louder until two things stumble into the trembling light. The desiccated corpse scuffles up to the group as if drawn by the light. Triss stands her ground as the dead things approach. The taller of the two cadavers has a sword bound to its right arm, the rusty, chipped blade dragging on the ground behind as it shambles forward. Its left arm is bound to a small, metal and wooden buckler with several broken arrows protruding from it. Its ancient leather armor and helmet is battled scarred and most disturbing, has fresh blood splattered across it. The head flops from shoulder to shoulder as if the weight of the skull is too much for the emaciated neck. It moves forward, towards Triss, it pauses and turns its head toward the female elf. Hollow sockets seem to search the space before it and it shuffles towards the red head, she holds her breath. The corpse’s face turns towards the flickering fire of the torch. It almost seems to study the flame as if it were trying to figure out what this flickering light was.

The second dead thing is unarmed, and judging from its attire was once a noblewoman. Tuffs of long, stringy grey hair clings to her scalp. Her ripped and threadbare gown barely hangs on her withered frame. It’s impossible to know what color the fabric once was as it’s covered with mud, plant matter, dried blood and other unidentifiable stains. She shuffles up to join the other, but instead of studying the torch she make a low, guttural hissing sound. The dead warrior turns its head towards her so quickly it nearly knocks the torch from the elf’s hand. The female hisses again, its clawed hand now reaching towards the delicate flame. With no eyes they hunt by sound and even the slightest of sound will cause the dead to frenzy. Triss’ lungs are burning with the need to inhale, but she knows that they will hear her if she does. She doesn’t know how much longer she can hold her breath. Slowly the shriveled, clawed hand retreats before touching the flame. The warrior opens it mouth and shrieks loudly. Triss uses the sound to cover the sound of her taking a breath. Bethany gasps and covers her mouth to stifle her scream. The dead things instantly turn their attention to the dark haired mage and slowly close in.

Bethany keeps her hand over her mouth and tries not to make another sound, terror evident in her wide eyes. Fenris tightens his grip on his weapon and wants to charge, but Triss shakes her head. Engaging the dead is not wise, they feel no pain and will not stop until either you are dead or their body is completely destroyed. Fenris cocks his head and scowls at the red head, but he cannot deny that she is right. He grits his teeth and watches, helplessly, as the cadavers close in and study the trembling mage. Bethany squeezes her eyes shut and silently prays that they will leave.

A third corpse slowly begins to emerge in the light. With its left leg missing just below the knee it crawls forward. It raises its head and a dry raspy sound escapes its mouth. The two corpses near Bethany turn as if to acknowledge this new member. The crawler continues to move ahead. Its shriveled, clawed hands grasping at the ground before it as it drags its body along the ground. It moves until it grabs Triss’ boot. Puzzled by the unfamiliar texture its hands begin to explore the area and soon finds her ankle. The red haired elf does her best to remain silent as the cadaver uses her leg to pull itself up, until it bites her leg and a small yelp escapes her lips.

All three dead things turn to attack Triss, but Fenris is quick to swing his two-handed sword catching the dead warrior in the midsection. The dead warrior stumbles back, regains its balance and quickly closes in on the white haired elf. Isabela quickly unsheathes her weapons and impales the female corpse, while Triss uses the torch to bludgeon the crawler. Varric takes careful aim and pins the dead warrior’s feet to the ground. Bethany rushes up and kicks the crawler, dislodging it from Triss’ leg. The man carrying Bianca stays back, behind Varric and keeps an eye out for other approaching enemies.

The dead noblewoman spins so quickly she rips one of Isabela’s blade from her grasp. The pirate stumbles back, narrowly avoiding a swipe to her face. The dark skinned woman pulls a smaller knife from a hidden sheath in her corset and blocks a clawed hand coming towards her face.

The dead warrior struggles to free its feet from the floor as Fenris closes in to cleave his foe in twain. The dead warrior quickly uses its shield arm to block the incoming blow, and counters by swinging his sword arm at the elf. Fenris dodges and brings his sword around again the corpse successfully blocks the attack; however its shield shatters under the onslaught. It shifts its weight and causes the elf to stumble back. The cadaver growls viciously and slices at Fenris again, this time cutting the white haired warrior’s left arm. He grits his teeth and channels his pain into anger, causing his lyrium to glow a bright blue.

Bethany quickly closes the distance and manages to stab the crawler in the head. The corpse continues to flail about until it grabs onto the blade and Bethany finds she must struggle to pull her weapon free. She quickly uses the second sword to cut off the corpse’s hand which allows her to reclaim her sword. The dead thing claws at the mage with its one remaining hand until it grabs her ankle and manages to pull her off balance. Triss is quick to leap into action, and sets the creature on fire with her torch. Instead of releasing Bethany, as Triss had planned, its grip tightens as the flames engulf it.

Unable to get a clear shot at the crawler, Varric takes aim and lands three critical shots on the deceased noblewoman. The corpse wobbles then turns towards Varric with the intention of attacking him; however, Isabela drops her small knife and rips her sword free from the cadaver’s back. The woman shrieks and resumes her attack on the pirate. The dark skinned woman easily dodges the clumsy attack and swings her weapon around, decapitating the corpse. The body stopped moving, as if startled by the attack. It stands there teetering and then expectantly she lunges forward, her decrepit and claw like hands blindly thrashing about hoping to hit something.

“Destroy the body, Rivaini!”

“That’s what I’m trying to do,” she snarls while ducking a swipe to her neck.

“Well, you’re not doing a very good job.” With another shot Varric pins the noblewoman’s feet to the floor. Isabela, rather than snap at Varric, viciously slices at the corpse nearly cutting her in half. The dead woman’s spine snaps and her upper torso falls to the ground. The pirate immediately turns her attention to help Triss free Bethany from the flaming corpse’s grasp.

Varric takes aim and shoots Fenris’ foe multiple times in the back. The cadaver twitches and jerks as if in some macabre dance as each bolt strikes. Fenris takes advantage of the distraction and cuts off the thing’s arms in a quick, fluid motion. The corpse emits a gravely, furious roar and charges the elf. He throws his shoulder into the attack and knocks the dead warrior off its feet, the dwarf immediately showers in bolts, effectively pinning it to the ground and rendering it harmless.

Triss cries out as the crawler latches onto her arm with its teeth. Blood drips from her arm onto the ground, as Isabela quickly swings her knife around and severs the bottom jaw. Fenris rushes up and cuts off the cadaver’s other hand. His lyrium glows brightly as he plunges a fist into the corpse’s body and rips out the dead heart. Isabela brings her blades down on its head. It twitches once then stops moving.

“Andraste’s flaming sword!” The man carrying Bianca stares at the elf with wide fear filled eyes. Triss on the other hand does not look surprised, a fact Varric comments on.

“Danarius had other slaves,” she says, her eyes look to Fenris as if for permission to speak of his past.

“You know me,” he asks. Triss looks at him, unable to believe the question. “I have no memories before the ritual,” he finds himself confessing.

“Yes,” her eyes are guarded. “I know you, but this is discussion for later. Like when we’re out of a walking dead filled sewer.”

“Let me bind your wound,” Bethany offers. After a moment of hesitation Triss relents and allows the human to clean and bind the injury. She then turns her attention to Fenris. Her touch is gentle and causes his heart to race. She rolls her eyes up, and his breath catches in his throat.

“Thank you,” he manages to say.

“Come on,” Triss sighs. “Let’s get out of here before more show up.

Once they reach the surface, the prisoner hands Bianca over to Varric and bolts down the first dark alley he can find.

“I’m going to get this looked at,” Triss holds up her wounded arm. “I’ll meet you later in the Undercity.”

Varric carries Bianca the entire way back to the Undercity’s brothel. The instant they walk in, Rafi rushes up to them and guides Varric to an unoccupied room in the back.

“Honey-Bear get Isana,” he calls out while opening the door to the back room. Varric carefully lays her on the bed. Bethany pushes him aside to evaluate Bianca’s injuries. Her wrists and ankles are bloodied and raw. Lacerations, bruises and burns cover her body. Her red hair is matted and caked with sweat and blood. Varric cannot recall anytime anyone looked this bad.

“You can heal her, right? Tell me you can heal her,” he can’t keep the frantic, worried tone from his voice.

“Mom,” Isana runs into the room. “Mom,” she exclaims, pushing Bethany out of the way to hold Bianca’s hand. “Mom, please wake up.”

Varric grabs Isana’s arms and tries to pull her away from Bianca so Bethany can work her magic. The girl throws her elbow back and catches Varric in the gut; while he’s still off balance she spins quickly and shoves him with all her might. The storyteller stumbles back into Isabela, who barely manages to remain on her feet. Varric recovers his balance, grabs the girl and pulls her away. She stumbles and is caught by Rafi before she hits the floor. She screams obscenities at Varric as she lunges at him with her dagger drawn. Rafino and a dwarf with light brown hair and honey eyes are quick to grab her and keep her from Varric. She dodges the human, but the dwarf easily catches her left arm. Isana brings her right arm around, the dagger flashing in the light.


The dwarf doesn’t even blink and captures her other hand. He then twists her, pressing her back to his chest and uses her arms to pin her.

“I was part of the warrior caste little girl. You can’t out fight me.”

“Orez, let me go,” she shrieks.

“Everybody out!” Bethany raised voice stops all fighting. “If I’m going have any hope of healing her I can’t have distractions. Out,” she shouts, pointing at the open door.

“I’m staying,” Fenris challenges, despite the look in Bethany’s brown eyes. “You’ll need mana and you can pull it from me.”

“Fine,” she looks at the rest of the group, almost challenging them to say something. Once the room is empty and the door closed, Bethany sinks to her knees beside the bed and evaluates Bianca’s wounds.

“Her injuries look severe,” Fenris points out.

“They are. Fenris,” she looks up at him and the touch of doubt is in her eyes is breaks his heart. “I’m not Anders. I’m not even a healer; I just a mage who knows a couple of healing spells. I don’t know if…”

“You are stronger than you give yourself credit for,” he encourages. A shaky smile crosses her lips. She takes a deep breath and places her hands on Bianca.

“Maker give me strength,” she prays and begins weaving her spell.

Isana has been pacing for the last two hours as she chews on her nails while she waits for Bethany to emerge from the room. Her intense blue eyes move between Varric and the door. Nagging questions dance with her anticipation and slowly begin to turn into anger.

Isabela leaves to go to the bar, pausing long enough to find out that Varric doesn’t want anything. Varric sits at a small table and prays. He prays to his ancestors, the Maker, the Old Gods, anyone who might be listening and willing to throw in their divine assistance. He begins to wonder if they could’ve gotten to Bianca sooner. Could he have insisted the ship leave earlier? Did they really need to stay those extra nights in Cumberland? What if he encouraged the Merchants to travel longer between stops? He begins second guessing all of his decisions that lead him to this point as the ‘what ifs’ continue to parade through his head like a dark plague.

“Why didn’t you get here sooner,” Isana finally asks Varric as if she read his mind.

“I tried; maybe if I’d done things differently I could’ve been here sooner. I don’t know…”

“Why did you leave her?”

“What,” her anger catches him off guard.

“My mother, when she left Kirkwall, why didn’t you go with her?”

“Circumstances you wouldn’t understand.”

“Oh, yeah? Try me,” her anger continues to grow.

“Some stories are not meant to be shared, Precious.”

“Don’t call me Precious,” she growls. “Did you ever love her?”

“I love her with everything I am,” He’s trying to remain calm. This is the daughter of the woman he loves more than his own life and he doesn’t want to hurt her.

“Tell me how she got that scar on her chest if you love her so much,” her tone is mocking and her eyes reveal that she knows the cause of the scar. She’s deliberately pressing his buttons, and he’s too on edge to realize it.

“Back off, Precious, you’re treading on dangerous grounds.” His eyes are serious and his words hold a warning tone. Her lips curl in a silent snarl at the hated nickname.

“You don’t love her. You don’t even care!” Her raised voice begins drawing some attention.

“Letting her go nearly destroyed me, but it was the only way to protect her.” He slowly rises to his feet and locks eyes with the teenager. “You know nothing about what I sacrificed to keep her safe.”

The volume escalates as their argument continues and the number of onlookers increase, but no one dares get too close. Isabela approaches the crowd and can barely see Varric and Isana on the verge of throwing punches. Everyone gasps when the young dwarf draws her dagger. The pirate pushes her through the mass of people. Ordinarily she’s side with her friend, but this time she needs to stop him, she realizes that nothing good will come from this fight. She gets breaks through just as Varric frees Bianca from his back.

“Dance with me, Precious, I’ll show you a thing or two.”

Isana is quick to lunge at Varric, who uses the crossbow’s bayonet to deflect her attack. Isabela draws her blades and manages to block Isana’s next assault. She boots the young woman in the chest, throwing her off balance. While the dwarf regains her balance, the dark skinned woman spins and punches Varric in the temple with the pommel of her weapon. He stumbles back and bumps into a table, his head spins from the blow.

The young dwarf presses her attack, her rage now focuses on this new enemy, just as Isabela had planned. The pirate soon realizes that Isana is faster than she looks and knows how to use her height to her advantage, forcing her to change her fighting tactics. The pirate just barely misses a swipe to her midsection, but parries the next strike and uses her weight to throw the girl off balance. From the corner of her eye Isabela sees Varric recover and is quick to kick him in the chest, sending him into a chair with such force that he topples over.

Isabela is aware of two more people trying to force their way through the crowd as Isana crouches, preparing to lunge at the pirate.

“I’m right here,” she taunts. “Hit me!”

As if on cue she leaps and Isabela barely manages to side step. The dark skinned woman doesn’t strike when the opening presents itself, she doesn’t want to hurt the girl, only wear her out. Suddenly Rafino and Orez break through and charge the fighting women. In a move of pure grace, the pirate sheaths her blades and dances away from Rafino to pounces on Varric, knocking him back to the floor and pinning him. Isana shouts obscenities and struggles for freedom. The amber eyed dwarf has his hands full with the teenager, and calls to Rafino for help.

“Andraste’s tits Rivaini get off me,” he struggles against her superior use of leverage.

“Do you really want to hurt Bianca’s daughter,” her voice is low and calm. Hearing his love’s name seemed to have a calming effect on him.

“Maker’s Breath I could’ve hurt her, killed her even.”

“But because of me you didn’t, so I think you owe me a pint.”

“Ok, ok you win. Get off me,” Varric orders, his voice calmer. She stands and offers her hand to help the dwarf get to his feet. They look over and see that Rafino and Orez are having the same amount of success calming Isana’s rage. Her blue eyes glare at Varric, but she finally agrees not to attack anyone.

The door to Bianca’s room opens and Fenris staggers out carrying an unconscious Bethany. He leans against the door frame and barely manages the two steps to exit the room. Bethany is pale and covered in a fine sheen of sweat. There are dark circles beneath Fenris’ glassy eyes and he too looks pale and shaken, even his lyrium brands look dull and lifeless.

He struggles to take a third step, and ends up staggering back into the wall, laboring to keep his hold on Bethany.

“She…she lives,” he breathlessly says and slides to the floor out cold, the rise and fall of his chest the only indication that he was still alive.

Varric and Isana rush towards the room, only to be blocked by Orez, who used the recent fight as justification for his actions. “I’ll let you in one at a time and for equal amounts of time.”

“Go ahead…Isana. I’ll wait,” it killed him to say those words, but knowing Bianca is alive puts him at ease.

“Good, now that we have that sorted out. Rafi, get the human, I’ll carry the elf, they can rest in our room.”

The day gives way to night and Bianca still hasn’t woken up, but Isana and Varric keep their vigil. It’s nearing dawn and Fenris wakes to gentle warm pressure on his chest. When he opens his eyes he’s startled to find himself in the same bed with Bethany. At some point in her slumber she curled up against him resting her head and arm on his chest, but what surprises him even more is the fact that his arms are wrapped protectively about her. It’s almost terrifying how right it feels to have her in his arms. He finds the slow, rhythmic sounds of her breathing to be the most relaxing sound he’s ever heard. This is the second time he’s found her in his arms. Gently his fingers trace the round shape of her ear, and for a moment he believes that he can be happy. Then he starts wondering if he can truly trust a mage.

Slowly he gets out of the bed and quietly slips out the room, thoughts of the dark haired mage swimming in his head. He runs his hands through his white hair as he walks into the lobby. It isn’t long until he finds Varric sitting at a table, staring at Bianca’s room.

“How’s Bethany,” the dwarf asks, his eyes still locked on the room. Through the open door he can see Isana sitting next to her.

“She’s fine. She should be up in a few hours. Bianca still out?”


“She said Bianca would be out for a day or two. There will be some scars…”

“But she’s alive,” Varric interrupts.

“Bethany also suggested that when she wakes up that she spend another day in bed resting.”

“Good to know.”

“Where’s Isana?”

“She’s enjoying some alone time with her mother,” Varric gestures towards Bianca’s room.

“How are you doing?”

“No offense, Elf, but I’m not much in the mood for company right now.”

“If it’s all the same to you, I’d like to just sit here and think.”

“Sounds like we both have a lot to think about.”

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