Title: Rhapsody in Ass Major – Chapter 28
Fandom: Dragon Age
Characters: Artemis Hawke ♂, Leandra Amell ♀, Cormac Hawke ♂, Anton Hawke ♂, Bethany Hawke ♀, Anders ♂, Fenris ♂, Isabela ♀
Rating: T (L2 N0 S0 V2 D1)
Warnings: Violence, threats of further violence, Anders has a death wish, Bethany’s an Entropy mage, Fenris is irate, mages, everyone’s doing Isabela except not, strong implications of femslash and het
Notes: What was that about Anders and a death wish? a.k.a, the chapter where Anders hands Fenris his ass over Artemis.
Breakfast, the next morning, was completely surreal. Anton, not unexpectedly, did not appear.
"Pass the cream, would you, Artemis?" Leandra held out her hand. "I’m wondering if the Blight weakened the ground under Kirkwall, somehow. Are we on a fault? Is there some dwarven mining project going on? The house keeps shaking, at the oddest times. I don’t remember it doing that when I was a child."
Cormac guzzled tea, to avoid laughing hysterically. Artemis choked on his, accidentally spilling the cream as he was handing it to her.
"Mines," he coughed, dabbing at the spill with his napkin. "Yes. There is mining going on. Mining of… tunnels." Oh Maker. That was making it worse. He glared at Cormac through another cough.
"Artemis, darling, are you alright?" asked Leandra.
"Fine," Artemis insisted, once the choking had stopped.
"Stop staring at me, Abomination." Fenris looked up from the fire, glaring at Anders.
"I’m just wondering what Artemis sees in you." Anders shrugged and shook his head.
‘Sees’. Present tense. Well, wasn’t that interesting. "I’m not sure I care. What need have I for some mage’s infatuation?"
"You really don’t see it, Anders?" Isabela asked, stretching her feet closer to the fire. "Just look at him! So little and pretty and strong! Do you see the way he swings that sword around? That’s hot. And the brooding just adds to the appeal."
"I do not brood, Isabela. For the hundredth time."
"Fine. You sulk. It still looks good on you." Isabela grinned. "And I’m going to ask Artie all about how far down those lines go, just to watch that adorable blush he gets! And because I’d love to know, and I don’t think you’re going to be sweet enough to show me… are you?"
"I could always tell you," Anders said with a dangerous grin. "We didn’t need a lantern in the cellar, if you know what I mean."
"Mage," Fenris growled, handing curling around his sword hilt in a warning. That had been Artemis’s idea, an idea he knew he shouldn’t have gone along with. The only thing worse than one mage was two. He glared at Cormac. Or three.
Isabela looked positively gleeful. "Ohh, what’s this?" she asked, leaning forward and giving them all quite the view. "Anders and Broody? Have you all been holding out on me?"
"You already know all about me, Izzy." Anders grinned and held up his hand, sparks dancing between the fingers. "But, I might have gotten a very good, long look at our friend, here. Might. Maybe."
"Mages," Fenris spat, leaping to his feet. "All the same."
"Now, now." Isabela frowned up at Fenris. "It’s not because he’s a mage. It’s because he likes getting under your skin. Me? I’d settle for just getting under your clothes. But, I do see the appeal. You get even sexier when you’re angry."
Fenris wanted to be flattered. He did. But, she was just doing it to defend the abomination. Who, apparently, she had slept with. Of course. His hands clenched. Everyone around here was fucking everyone else. Except him. And that was just fine.
"Is there anyone here who hasn’t slept with the abomination?" Fenris sighed.
Bethany and Anton raised their hands.
"Don’t worry, you two. You’re next." Anders winked at the pair of them. Bethany tittered into her hand while Anton looked speculative.
"Isn’t one Hawke enough?" Fenris growled. He wasn’t going to think about the night of the party, with Anders touching his — no, not his, certainly not his — Hawke.
Fenris didn’t like the sly smile Anders gave him. "There’s no such thing as too much Hawke," Anders said. "Don’t you think, Cormac?"
"There’s more than enough Hawke to go around. I support getting as much as you can, whenever you can. But, Anders, if you so much as touch my sister, I will break all of your fingers." Cormac grinned lazily. "I know how dangerous you are."
"And you know how dangerous I am," Bethany pointed out.
"In a very, very different way." Cormac pointed at Anders, still addressing his sister. "For your own sake, don’t. Hell, if you don’t believe me, ask Artie."
Bethany groaned. "I knew it! He has got to stop doing that, or the house is going to fall in on us!" She paused and looked at Anders. "Not you, but you know what I’m talking about."
"Stop?" Fenris echoed. No. No, you didn’t tell someone to ‘stop’ something that had already happened. ‘Stop’ implied something continuous.
Firelight wasn’t the only light reflecting off their faces then, and Fenris realised he was growling deep in his throat, his lyrium brands lit.
Ooh, he’s glowing at you, Anders!" Isabela purred. She was getting so much inspiration for her friend-fiction tonight!
"What do you even care?" Anders asked, looking up at Fenris. "You made it pretty clear you were done. You broke his heart. You don’t really get a say, any more."
Cormac could not have planned that if he’d tried. Perfect. Fenris just needed a nudge in the right direction, and he’d come back around. Well, assuming the whole thing didn’t get Anders killed, of course. He’d be pretty sad if he sacrificed the healer for the sake of his brother’s love life.
Fenris froze, and his eyes did not leave Anders’s face. He seemed to fade in and out with every breath. ‘Broke his heart’. That was… he supposed he’d known that. But, Artemis had— "Stop talking, abomination, or I will end your miserable, whining existence."
"You know, I might let you," Anders replied, because he didn’t need lyrium tattoos to get under someone’s skin, "assuming you squeeze my soft bits some more, first. Speaking of soft bits, you know when you touch Artie’s—"
Fenris’s growl turned into a snarl, and then he was lunging at Anders from across the fire.
"Oh, shit!" Anton tried to intercept him. Isabela was gleefully taking notes.
Bethany raised a hand and Fenris dropped, screaming, hands clutching at his head. Anton rolled him off the fire, just a little too slow to get him before he dropped. He’d been aiming for the space between the fire and Anders.
"Shit." Anders was on his feet at once, crouching down next to Fenris. "Get the plate off him, before it gets worse. Or at least throw water on that."
Bethany tossed her waterskin to Anders, and he set about healing the burns.
Cormac sighed. "Bethy, really?"
"You can fix the elf. You can’t fix the healer." She shrugged. "Tell me when it’s safe to let him up, you guys?"
"Mages," Fenris spat, curling in on himself and still clutching his head. He whimpered as Anders knit healing magic through his skin.
"Yes, mages," Anders sighed. "This is why lunging at one is a bad idea. Especially around fire."
"Especially around Bethy," Anton muttered. His sister gave him a look that said ‘damn right’.
Somehow through the shaking and whimpering, Fenris still managed to throw them the finger.
"I think he’s fine," Anders said.
Bethany let up and tossed a bottle of wine to Anders, who didn’t drop it. "For him. He’s going to need it."
Fenris finally relaxed, still not moving, but a lot less tense. "You healed me," he grumbled at Anders’s feet.
"That being what I do. I am the healer." Anders pried the wine open.
"I was going to kill you." Fenris slowly straightened his legs, looking like he expected spiders to run up them.
"That’s never stopped me before." Anders laughed and offered the bottle.
"There is something very wrong with you." Fenris rolled onto his back and took the bottle.
"There is," Anders agreed cheerfully.
Fenris had no idea how the man was still alive. He took a long drink and stared up at the stars. All these mages were going to be the death of him.