Hawke expects failures, faces from the Fade.
He doesn’t expect First Enchanter Orsino.
‘The last time we met,’ Hawke says, ‘I couldn’t help but notice you were a bit more…abominable.’ But then, Hawke adds privately, he’s always been drawn to that, hasn’t he?
Even after he lost Mother the night offered no dark dreams, no dread demons, no shades or shadows returned from beyond the twisted grave. The time would have been right; the man was weak. But his head hit the pillow and only sleep followed—sleep without whispers.
Not so now.
They’ve met in the Fade before, just an echo of a young lad’s careless dreaming. Orsino folded his arms beneath the sleeves of his robes before and he does the same now, hiding long fingers graceful under the hems, knuckles tucked where the pulse should be.
‘Perhaps I’m no more than your imagination,’ Orsino replies. ‘How you wish to remember me—and not how I really was.’
‘That seems a sensible way to manage,’ Hawke says.
As though How To Deal With Your Abomination is a handy guide passed back and forth through Thedas. Given all their troubles, it should be; Varric could pen the thing and make a dwarven fortune, so much easier than a trip through the Deep Roads. Fewer arcane horrors and darkspawn, for one thing.
Hawke feels his grin twitch. He feels his molars grind together. Orsino bows his head and chuckles, neither sweet nor shameful.
If Hawke had been a Circle mage, he thinks—a Gallows mage, the distinction necessary because it lacks friendliness—this would be the man he revered, the man he idolized. This would be the man he knew, and not the disappointment.
Despair and danger and cleverness. A sharp profile. Hair swept back from the widow’s peak and behind sharp ears, a personal weakness, not necessarily the same as indulging in too much Orlesian wine with supper or even sensing the call, the possibilities, of blood and magic. Character. Hawke’s always tried to believe in it.
‘Are you here to haunt me, then?’ Hawke asks.
It seems a plausible assumption.
‘Perhaps—although I’m not your greatest failure,’ Orsino says.
‘No,’ Hawke agrees. ‘Just a missed opportunity.’
Orsino slides his hands free at last, opening his palms, lifelines cut short against the flesh. Hawke remembers holding him at the end—the same way he held his mother, until all life fled. And he holds them after, too, deep in the silence of his dreams, Orsino stepping closer, offering healing like temptation—same as it’s always been.
Gahhhh so spicyshimmy wrote me some Hawkesino for xmas (yes I am bribing everyone for Hawkesino stuff fight me) It’s such a heavy and feelings-based fic, and I love the little things, like Hawke grinding his teeth and the description of Orsino’s folded arms, the simple words with which they speak to each other AAAA.
How do you guise write so well I don’t even, all the emoshunns.
One day I will write as well so as to detract attention from my derpy arts.
THANK YOU SHIMMY <3