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Old 01-18-2013, 03:01 PM   #4
Drizzt Do'Urden

Join Date: November 24, 2001
Location: Neverending Nights
Age: 48
Posts: 634
Default Re: Dragon Age: Life Begins With Death.

The fire crackled, sending small embers into the air, like birds flying through the thick clouds, seeking the clear skies above.

“So what were you before you became one of them,” Quinn asked as he jabbed the fire again, sending a multitude of embers flowing into the mist, in their circular dance of death.

William looked at Quinn as he shined his sword with the tattered cloth he had ripped from his own clothes.

“Before you became a Grey Warden,” Quinn elaborated, though he knew that William knew exactly what he meant.

“I was nothing,” William answered. “No one. Nothing. I was a beggar on the streets of Denerim. I had no life. I had no future.”

“The perfect candidate for becoming a Grey Warden,” Quinn said with an eerie smile, his eyes staring directly into the fire. “Someone with no hope, no future, no family. If you go missing, get killed, die during the Grey Warden Ritual, no one cares, no one misses you.” Quinn shook his head. “Who was it that recruited you?”

“Riordan,” William said, thinking back to the fateful day that Riordan had recruited him. “Riordan had watched me fight several other humans that had begun beating up on several Elves who were passing through the alleyway near the Alienage. I had approached the humans telling them that the Elves had nothing and were best left alone. But the humans did not listen. They drew their daggers and swords, and with no weapon in hand, I had improvised and used a stick from the ground to strike the first human in the ear. The human had grabbed his ear in pain giving me the opening I needed to strike him in the back of the head, rendering him unconscious. I grabbed the human’s dagger after he collapsed, and fought the other three humans; killing one, as the other two fled. The Elves were grateful, yet fearful. I still regret letting those two humans go. I had seen them before roughing up Elves. Veras and Saritor – that was their names. They were up to something… something bad. I know it. But the guards of Denerim… they wouldn’t listen to me. And why would they? I was just a beggar until Riordan came up to me after that fight… That’s when Riordan had approached me, told me he had observed the fight and that he would like to recruit me into the Grey Warden; to give me a purpose in life.”

“Riordan,” Quinn said with a light laugh. He peered at William who sat across from him. The flames danced, casting unusual shadows across Quinn’s face. “I know Riordan well. He was also the one who recruited me from the Circle.” Quinn shook his head. “So if you know Riordan, then you know about his saying; how, as Grey Warden, you are not judges. Kinslayers, Blood Mages, traitors, rebels, carta thugs, common bandits; anyone with the skill and mettle to take up the sword against the Darkspawn was welcome in the Grey Wardens.”

William said nothing, instead he continued to shine his sword. The sword was clean. But he kept cleaning. It gave him something to do. Something for him to think about other than what they should be doing next. He finally looked up and stared at Quinn, “I remember he also said the Joining binds us to the Darkspawn. Those who forswear their oath and flee will eventually find themselves in the Deep Roads or deep into the Blighted Lands, given time.”

“Why do you think I’m here?” Quinn scoffed. It was clear to William that Quinn hated the fact that the blood that coursed through his veins called to him to put an end to the Darkspawn. It was the single aspect of Quinn’s life, William realized, that he could not control, despite all of his power as a Blood Mage.

“It was Riordan who convinced me to become a Blood Mage,” Quinn finally said after a long moment of silence. He shoved at the wood with a stick again, sending yet more embers up, as if they were the fireflies that would guide him to his past memory. “Riordan saw great potential in me as a mage at the Circle. He was impressed by how quickly I had mastered the magic that many could not – even my own seniors. Riordan saw in me that the Circle was holding me back. If I was truly to be an asset to the Grey Wardens, I had to be free of the Circle’s constraints. I had to tap into a magic far darker than the Circle would ever permit. Riordan kept watch over me, kept me out of trouble, out of the reach of the Templars. Until Ostagar,” Quinn shook his head at the memory. “One of the members of the Circle … displeased with me having become a Blood Mage, foolishly… challenged me. I was consumed in the moment of battle. I lost control of myself. I killed him. In a time where we needed every able hand, I destroyed him. And after that, there was little Riordan's comrade, Duncan, could do to keep me out of the hands of the Templars and Magi. It was only because Duncan spoke on behalf of Riordan that I was not immediately slain by the Templars, and that I would be given a trial at the Circle of Magi, to explain my actions, to see if I could be… redeemed.” The last words fell from Quinn’s lips with great effort, as if speaking them would poison his body.
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