Posted by : Wendy B Friday, 25 May 2012
DISCLAIMER: This is a work of revisionist fanfiction for my personal entertainment (and maybe yours). Dragon Age II and all related characters and locations are the property of Bioware Inc. RATING: Grown ups.
“I cannot allow you to live.”
“I know,” Anders said quietly.
“But death is too easy an escape. For now, I need you.”
Sebastian expressed his passionate disapproval, but Caleya promised him that she would deal with Anders appropriately later. The warning look in her eyes seemed to be enough to appease him for the moment, but it wouldn't last. Merrill thought Caleya was allowing Anders a chance for reparation as she’d done for the elf after Mardelle had exiled her, but Caleya’s reasoning was far more practical than that. They were wading into battle and she needed all the assets she could get to make it through this battle and ensure that Kirkwall survived the war that would not be far behind.
She stood in the Viscount’s office. Her office. Knight-Captain Cullen was there, along with Guard Captain Aveline. And Anders.
“I suppose you could thank me for this,” Anders said bitterly. “You could have just killed me for what I’d done, but instead, you’re using me to cement your new position.”
“You don’t like the idea of betraying friendship and trust to make a political statement?” Caleya said with her usual sarcastic sweetness. “You’re right, though. Your actions made me realize my purpose here in Kirkwall. And yes, your trial will be a part of that.”
“It’s a farce, Hawke! My guilt is determined. Why go through with this performance?”
Aveline stepped forward, “Because it’s long past time Kirkwall actually respected its laws.”
“And,” Cullen added, “because we aren’t going to allow you to get off that easily, Anders. Death isn’t good enough after what you’ve done.”
“Well, you can’t just lock me up. You know how that works out,” he pouted, until realization dawned on him and his eyes went wide in fear. “No! You wouldn’t! You can't! After all we’ve just fought for!? How could you even consider this??”
“The Divine demands it,” said Cullen. “Her emissaries will be here soon. Her eyes were already on Kirkwall because of this unrest, but the destruction of the Chantry ... she will want more than your ... blood...”
“I will not allow this!” Vengeance shouted, menacing his staff at Caleya.
“You know, if it didn’t require blood magic or a stable Dalish mage, of which we are short, we could have had this little chat in the Fade, instead.”
It was enough to give Vengeance pause. “You ... you do not intend to make us Tranquil, do you. You angered me on purpose.”
“I wanted to see for myself who was truly in charge.”
Vengeance lowered the staff and cocked his head in curious suspicion, but said nothing.
“You know that your crimes must be punished. Your actions killed innocents and served to further incite a war that killed more innocents and murdered the one person who could have helped your cause. You know this. I wouldn’t consider you a very good spirit of Justice if you didn’t. You had already accepted death as your atonement. But justice is not as black and white as you pretend, is it? If you truly want your actions to have meaning, then you will hear me and understand that I will not allow you to simply die and become a martyr in this. I won't allow you to escape. If you want to see freedom for mages, then Anders' part in this war is far from over. But Vengeance. Your part is done.”
His skin still glowed with the etchings of the spirit, but it was Anders’ voice that responded, resigned to his fate now that he realized Caleya had seen through him. “What is it you ask of me?”
Caleya unfolded her arms and took Anders' hands in her own. “I need your trust. And your silence.”