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Becoming - Chapter 9

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Literature Text

Title: Becoming
Author: Freckles04
Game: Dragon Age: Origins
Character: Alistair
Disclaimer: Originally posted on BSN and FF.net. The world of Dragon Age belongs to Bioware, and many thanks to them for encouraging community creations.

Chapter 9: Destiny Whispers

Sunlight speared Alistair's eyes. He blinked, then wished he hadn't. His room came into view blearily, unfocused, and the oddity of it set his brain to thundering in protest. Why in the Maker's name did it feel like someone was jumping on his head? No, not jumping on it; jumping in it, bouncing off the inside of his skull. He groaned and squeezed his eyes shut again. Had there been a battle of some kind? Was he wounded?

Fuzzy memories surfaced. Dinner with the Grey Wardens, a somber affair as everyone felt the loss of Garth and Erik. And then...

"Oh, I didn't." He moaned and shoved his face into his pillow. His thoughts weren't totally clear yet--Maker knew if they ever would be again--but he recalled that plainly.

At some point last evening, after a round or two of ale had already flowed, Alistair had remarked that although Gregor was always drinking, he never got drunk. Bolstered by encouragement from the other Wardens, he'd smirked and suggested that...oh, holy Maker, had he really suggested that Anders must be like cows, with a separate stomach devoted totally to ale drinking?

It was a wonder that he'd woken up at all instead of being bashed to the Maker's side by Gregor's massive warhammer.

Gregor had frowned and roared across the hall that he would drink one pint for every half-pint the rest of the Wardens drank. And the game was on.

Everything got rather muddled after that.

The estate was relatively quiet. No one seemed to have any need for him at the moment, anyway. Thank Andraste for small favors. No point in dragging his aching head out of bed, then. Alistair pulled the blanket up over his face to block the strengthening sun and drifted back to sleep.

###

He stood in the Deep Roads, surrounded by darkspawn, but he wasn't afraid. None of them seemed to notice him. Instinct shouted at him to attack, but he wasn't an idiot, for all that he acted like one sometimes. Starting a fight here, now, would be suicide. He might as well run himself through and save the darkspawn the trouble.

Funny that he knew he was in the ancient dwarven tunnels. He'd never seen them before, but he recognized them instantly. Then again, where else would this be? He was underground, rough stone arching above him, in the midst of a darkspawn swarm--the Deep Roads seemed the most likely candidate for his location.

And still the darkspawn did not heed his presence.

Alistair took a step forward, then another when none of the creatures reacted. They all seemed to be focused on something in front of them, leaning forward like flowers yearning for sunlight. He found himself craning his neck too, trying to catch a glimpse of whatever it was that had enthralled them so.

Something big exploded upwards. Alistair stumbled back a step as his eyes tried to make sense of what he was seeing. Wings, teeth, talons, tail...

Maker. A dragon.

It thudded to the ground in front of him, crushing the darkspawn that stood there. The creatures didn't move, didn't scream; they simply allowed themselves to be stepped upon without protest. Alistair staggered back a handful of steps, and reached for his sword...but his sword and shield weren't there.

The dragon shifted forward, its veiny aubergine skin pulsing. It brought its head down and angled it so one soulless eye looked upon the ex-templar standing before it. The eye narrowed, almost like...almost like it recognized him.

Alistair's heart and lungs refused to work. His feet wouldn't move. The dragon turned its head again, and roared at him...a horrible, ungodly noise that filled his brain until he couldn't think. It reached forward--

He jolted upright, screaming.

"Alistair! Lad, what is it?"

He scrambled back across the bed, away from the voice, until his back met the wall. His heart pounded against his breastbone; his breaths wouldn't slow. Incoherent prayers fumbled through his mind.

"Alistair! Focus!"

He blinked and the vision of the dragon faded. "Duncan?"

"Yes, lad. Are you all right?" The dark-skinned man's brows drew into a frown.

"I--" Alistair shook his head. It still ached, though from the hangover or the awfulness of the dream, he didn't know. "What are you doing here?"

"When you didn't report for morning sparring, I decided to seek you out. Sleeping in, I see." A grin tugged at one corner of the Commander's mouth. "I thought for a moment that you had...someone...in your room."

"What? No..." Alistair closed his eyes and covered his face with his hands. "Was I the only one, then?"

"The only one still abed? I believe so. Lad, whatever possessed you to challenge Gregor to a drinking game?"

"No, no...not that. Duncan, I--" He scrubbed his hands over his face. "I dreamt of a dragon."

The older man froze. "A dragon," he repeated, his voice flat.

"Maker," Alistair whispered. "It was more than a dragon, I know it was. I was in the Deep Roads, surrounded by darkspawn, and it just erupted out of a crevasse, and...Andraste's ashes, Duncan. It looked at me. Like it knew me." He paused and regarded the Commander, trying to read the other man's expression. "It was an archdemon, wasn't it? I--I 'heard' it."

He expected the Commander to tell him that his dream was just that: a dream that meant nothing. Instead, Duncan closed his eyes and sighed. "Maker have mercy on us."

"Tell me I didn't dream of an archdemon," Alistair said.

"I wish I could, Alistair." Duncan opened his eyes again and took a deep breath. "I'd feared as much when we got close enough to the horde to sense its size, but, I'd hoped...no matter. We must warn the King."

"Based on my dream?" Alistair shook his head. "What if it's just my imagination?"

"We'll know by tomorrow, won't we?"

"By tomorrow..." The ex-templar frowned, then it dawned on him what Duncan meant. "If it's an archdemon, the others will dream tonight, won't they?"

"Just so. I'll ask for an audience with the King tomorrow. Either I'll have news to share about an unusually large darkspawn raid," Duncan said, "or news that a Blight has been unleashed upon Ferelden."
Alistair, bastard prince and former templar, embarks on a new life as a Grey Warden.

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Comments5
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RPGsrule's avatar
Why is Anders mentioned, in the first bit? I'm confuddled? :stupidme: :onfire:
Freckles04's avatar
"Anders" is the name of someone from the Anderfels. Like "Fereldan" for someone from Ferelden. I'm not referring to the character Anders from Awakening, but Gregor, who is mentioned in DAO as being a very large man from the Anderfels (an Anders).

I believe David Gaider has said that Anders is actually from the Anderfels, and his "name" is a nickname, not his actual name.
RPGsrule's avatar
Oh, makes a whole lot more sense now! So I'm curious, which one do you like better, Anders from Awakening or Anders from DA2? Awakening Anders is better than DA2 Anders, in my opinion.
Freckles04's avatar
Awakening Anders, absolutely. On my RP board, our Anders is the Awakening version, and he is so much fun. DA2 Anders was great in his own way, but I prefer Awakenings.

Also, for reference, this is the post in which David Gaider says that Anders isn't Anders's name: [link]

Thanks for reading and commenting! I appreciate it.
RPGsrule's avatar
No problem, the only thing that annoyed me about Awakening Anders was that you couldn't have a realationship with him! I mean you could flirt but you couldn't have any romantic options in awakening! *Kicks at dirt* Sucky...