A/N: Hello! So, as most of you are well aware, when your attention gets snagged by a character, they tend to refuse to let go. It happened to me with Cailan in Origins, and it's happened again with Anders. I felt I should funnel this love into something decidedly more light-hearted than "The Beacon," in an attempt to keep myself from going crazy. There's only so much angst a girl can handle, yeah? But that's not saying that these will all be cute drabbles. While most of them will be on the brighter side of things, there will also be darker, more introverted ones, as well. And they won't all be quite so long, either. Length will vary from prompt to prompt. :)
That said, I hope you enjoy these!
Prompt : Toy
The afternoon sky in Denerim was a mixture of deep blues and was surprisingly cloudless. Despite her distance from the window, Lía was well aware of the state of the weather due to her insatiable appetite for movement. She wasn't the sort of woman to sit around and wait, especially since the reason she was stuck in this room was late in returning. She fidgeted and squirmed and paced, and once the innkeeper had knocked at the door, rousing her out of her stupor only to have her hopes come crashing down around her.
Now, her nose was nestled in a hardbound volume of Antivan poetry, her ankles crossed and her shoulders pulled back as she leaned against the arm of the chair. She'd read the last stanza over five times - something about his Orlesian love and her horse-faced mother - but she'd yet to absorb the words and continue.
"For my love is like the first warm rain of summer," she murmured to herself, brows knitting as she strained to focus. "Warm, gentle; enveloping. And her mother is like the sun that dries the petals, suffocates them." Pausing, she flipped to the next page, relatively unimpressed with what she found as she sifted through the book. "He must really dislike her mother."
She was halfway through a poem about his attempting to poison the woman when she heard the latch on the door open. Numbing herself against the encroaching hope that he'd returned, her eyes drifted up the page, hardly catching the words as she did so.
But it was him, and he was standing there looking outrageously pleased with himself.
"Well?" she asked, shutting the book in one swift movement. The rush of air rustled the ends of her hair, filling her nose with the scent of old paper. "Was he there? Did you see him?"
"I didn't, no."
Lía stood, a thick brow arched almost into her hairline. When she spoke, her words left her lips slowly, each filled with caution. "So why do you look so smug?"
Anders all but grinned as he moved into the room, somehow managing to shut the door without taking his hands from behind his back. Beyond all of her hesitancy, she found herself smiling as she watched him, the curl of his own lips contagious as always. "I didn't have much coin with me, but I saw one of the vendors selling them and I couldn't pass it up."
Moving over to her, he set himself down on the stool in front of her chair and motioned with a nod for her to return to her seat. She did so, brow still raised in curiosity. People didn't often buy her gifts. True, any silver she accumulated either went to buying poultices or gifts for her party, but no one ever thought to give her anything back.
Of course he'd be the first.
With a flourish, he produced a small figure and placed it on her knee, his index and thumb curled around its waist. Taking a moment to look down at it, the truth slowly began to dawn on her. Black hair, armor, the Cousland family crest… "It's me."
"Sure is," he laughed, clearly both impressed with himself for finding such a jewel and amused that someone would make a doll of his fearless leader. The fact that she looked so shocked was just an added bonus. Biting down on his lip, he moved the doll from side to side in an exaggerated walk down her thigh. "Personally, I don't think there is a more accurate representation in all of Thedas. It's impressive."
"It doesn't have hands."
Anders' chin quivered as he bit back another laugh. Maker, she was either stunned into silence or she was going to strangle him. He was quick to hope for the former, though the possibility of it being the latter kept him from making any farther moves with the doll. "It does have hands!" Reaching forward, he lifted up the doll's arm, pointing towards the rounded end. "She doesn't have fingers, true, but those are just details."
Lía glanced up from the doll, and he was relieved to note that there was no animosity in her gray eyes. Instead, they were filled with mirth. Finally. "You've made note of her breasts, I'm sure." The doll was arguably "blessed" in comparison to the Warden-Commander, who'd often been mistook for a boy as a child. Thankfully those days were in the past, but this doll appeared as though she would tip over under a stiff wind.
"It's what initially got my attention," he smirked, glancing down at the doll and adding in a disappointed tone, "The single design flaw."
Reaching out, she knocked him playfully in the shoulder. "I've never heard you complain before."
"I never imagined I'd see such a pair on you, though. I feel enlightened. And saddened." He sighed, a mournful look befalling his otherwise bright expression. "Oh, to see how things could have been."
"Anders," she murmured, trying in vain to hold back a laugh as she watched his index absently roll over the doll's ample bosom. "You should probably ask her before you touch. She's a Grey Warden, after all. We wouldn't want you getting hurt."
The mage's eyes fell to the doll in his hand, and he let out a peal of laughter, sliding his index the necessary distance away from any of her more private areas. "Ah, yes, we all know this isn't truly you, then," he chuckled, having the doll jump from Lía's thigh to her forearm. "If I'd have tried such a thing when we first met, I'd have gotten a gauntlet in the teeth."
"Truer words have never been spoken. Especially not from you."
"Hey, that's not nice."
Lía grinned, patting the top of the doll's head. It wasn't necessarily a bad representation of her. The overcompensation of her breasts aside, she seemed to mirror the real thing rather well. Her pin straight posture, the hips she'd gained when she became a woman, black hair pulled away from her face. They even got the prideful expression down in surprisingly few details.
For hours, Anders and Lía gushed over his find. He spoke in a much higher register, while she deepened her voice to match his. He squealed on about nobility and making the right decisions; she boomed about freedom and pretty girls. Their impressions of each other rang with a truth born of spending so much time in each other's company.
Much of their time spent together was replayed that night. From their first meeting to the dramatically retold version of their first kiss, no story was left untold, no scene not replicated. The hour quickly grew late, and the sun was replaced by flickering candlelight and a crackling fire. That day's warmth was exchanged with hefty amounts of wine and laughter.
And when they finally fell asleep, they did so with the doll nestled between them.