She sings to herself as they clear out the old study, stripping it bare and throwing away anything that even hinted at the old arl's presence. They both wear simple tunics and tight trousers, and he commented that morning on what a refreshing change it was to see her out of armour. She had laughed and kissed him, which had led to rumpled sheets and salty skin and silly smiles that could not quite be displaced when Wynne finally and curtly told them that they were needed downstairs. He cannot quite stop grinning, as she promises an evening of fun with Leliana and Oghren and the Antivan, and then some fun of their own (this really is the interesting part for Alistair) and this is how they are found by Bann Teagan; giggling and smiling with not a care in the world.

"Am I interrupting something?" Alistair chuckles, shaking his head. "Good, then I come in my good arl's stead. Ser Warden, he wishes your presence in his chambers immediately," he announces, looking at the older Warden. Alistair blinks, but nods, turning to his love.

"Shouldn't be long." She nods, flicking her hair out of her face. He bows to Teagan, who does not seem quite ready to leave the lady's presence, and heads for the Arl's residence.


"I do not quite understand why she chose to keep you off the throne." Eamon's gaze is focused on some unseen point out the window, and Alistair is not entirely sure that this will be a happy conversation. Finally, he turns to face the man he would have seen king, and smiles softly. "But I trust her judgement. She is a fine woman, and an exceptional leader."

"She was right. I can't give up being a Grey Warden, even if Ferelden needs me to be."

"I think she understood that better than I." He sighs heavily. "Though the onus is now upon my peers to keep Anora in check."

"She's not that bad. You know as well as I do that she pushed Cailen a lot of the way."

"True enough." He sits, and motions for Alistair to do the same. "So, what now for the two of you?"

"Well, we've sent word to Orlais, and there's a contingent of Wardens on their way to help us rebuild what was lost. Although Maker only knows what they'll make of us two, we're not exactly.. exemplary Grey Wardens." He stretches. "Still, needs must."

"I did not mean that, Alistair." Eamon leans across the desk. "I meant for the two of you.. specifically."

"Oh. Well." He shuffles on his seat, not quite meeting the arl's eyes. "That's.. up to her."

"Last time I heard, a relationship was a two-way partnership." He almost laughs.

"Well, I'm very happy to follow her lead. If she's happy, then I am too."

"Truer words were never spoken. I had never dreamed to see the look on your face that you have whenever she is around – such contentment I had feared was beyond you." Alistair smiles, looking up. "Although you may want to watch out.. your other uncle has been speaking terribly favourably of her lately."

"Teagan? But that man could have the pick of Ferelden!"

"Indeed. But I think you are safe. I've seen the way she looks at you." The man in front of him chuckles.

"Tell Teagan that he'll have to top killing an archdemon if he wants a chance," he jokes, before standing up to take his leave. "Oh, and.. thank you, Eamon." The arl raises his eyebrows. "For.. well, for everything. But mostly for this." And he pulls out the amulet that was restored from his childhood. "It's kept me going through most of this, and.. I know you kept it for me." The arl smiles fondly.

"I am glad that you have it again. And I am also glad that we can accept the bonds of family between us now. I would have wished to do so when you were younger, but.."

"I know." Alistair does understand. Things were not so easy – but then, when you are a Grey Warden who has just saved the nation from a Blight, such trivialities can be swept aside. He grins, and strolls out the door. Behind him, Eamon closes his eyes and smiles, hopeful that his newly-reinstated nephew is doing his father proud.