Letter from the Queen

Summary: Elissa Cousland-Theirin is in Amarathine while her husband travels the Bannorn. How do you keep in touch? Modeled like a codex entry, this is a retelling of Awakening in the form of letters, from the PC to her husband. MAJOR SPOILERS. Alistair/Cousland.


My dearest Alistair,

I don't think anyone in Amarathine knows who I am. And I think that terrifies them.

Maybe we should have had a public wedding after all, seeing as no one can recognize the Queen of Ferelden on sight.

Enjoying this far too much,

Your darling wife Elissa.


My Alistair,

The days are going well, but would be better with you at my side. The new people I'm travelling with are so different—and yet strangely similar—to the ones you and I travelled with.

First, let me say that Ser Mhairi died in the Joining. She was so excited to join the Wardens; it just doesn't seem fair that she was the only one to fall. Ferelden has lost a good soldier that day.

Anders survived the Joining. You know, the apostate (speaking of which, have you noticed how some people up here pronounce it apastate instead of apostate? I spent my entire life on the coastlands and I've never noticed the difference before now.) He's quite the character, and a skilled healer. The Wardens will benefit from having him among us. You would like him, I think. The two of you have a similar sense of humor.

The only thing is he never talks to me. In fact, none of the recruits talk to me. I walk up to them to say hello or something, and they immediately go "Shouldn't we be leaving soon, Commander?" or "I don't like this place, Commander, let's get a move on." Honestly, am I that unapproachable? The only time I can get any of these people to talk to me is if I harass them about certain objects or trees or statues. 'Tis the strangest thing!

Oghren is doing well, I think. He won't talk to me, and he's gets offended at my jokes. Oghren use to love my jokes! I don't understand what's happened.

Oh, and you should know, I found another recruit—set your drink down first. No, don't argue with me. Put it down.

Okay.

His name is Nathaniel Howe.

Aren't you glad I told you to put the drink down? Now you haven't ruined all those important papers of yours.

Before you start questioning whether I've lost my mind, you should know I expected him to die in the Joining. But he didn't. And I really needed a decent archer, so I've kept him around. So far, he hasn't tried to kill me yet, so that's a plus. Actually, of all the new Wardens, I think Nathaniel and I get along the best. It may be because we knew each other from before, when our families were still friends. Still, it's a little odd that I talk more with the man whose father I brutally murdered than Oghren. Something is wrong with that, I think.

Still, I miss you terribly. Killing darkspawn is so dreadfully boring when you aren't around. Every time an Emissary tries to hit me with a spell, I think of you fondly and wish you were here.

All my love,

Elissa


Alistair,

You know how I told you me and the recruits were getting along swimmingly?

That is a lie.

Anders is a freak obsessed with a cat. Nathaniel is stalking me and I'm not sure why. Oghren remains a useless drunk.

The only one of them who makes any damn sense is Varel, and he's not even a Warden.

I want to go home.

Love,

Elissa

PS—I'm sorry you ruined the Orlesian ambassador's letter by spitting tea all over your desk. I did try to warn you—it's not my fault you didn't listen.


Dear Alistair,

No, you don't have to come to Amarathine and kick their arses. We're fine now. Anders killed a Templar, so I think he got some of it out of his system. And I took Nathaniel to see his sister, so while he's still a creepy stalker most days, at least he broods less.

Oghren is as useless as a dead horse, but I've given up on him.

In other news, I met some of the nobles from around the area! Absolutely none of them had any idea I was the Queen of Ferelden. I don't think some of them even knew I was a Grey Warden.

Only one of them recognized me as a Cousland. And that was because he knew my father.

I simply give up trying to understand these people! What, did they spend the last few years living under a rock? No, wait, that's insulting to the dwarves—they at least seem to know who I am!

With as much love as possible,

Your Queen, Elissa


Alistair,

I've decided Anders, Nathaniel, and Oghren do not know my name.

After all, why else would they continue to call me Commander, over and over and over again?

Even Oghren—Oghren—does it. It's simply maddening. Everyone else at least called me by name before, sometimes. (Eamon forgot a few times and simply called me "Warden" but, well, he's old. I'll cut him some slack.)

Meanwhile, everyone, from noble to farm-raised twit, calls me Commander.

Not Elissa. Not my Lady. Not Arlessa. Not even Queen.

Commander.

Oh well. Today we head out into the woods to investigate an elf or something. I wasn't paying much attention.

Lots of love,

Your Queen, Wife, Arlessa, Teyrna, Anything-But-Commander, Elissa


My love,

You should know that the reason I haven't written in a while is that I .

No, sit down. Everything is fine, and we made it out alive. No need to panic.

Well, there is still a talking darkspawn called the Architect out there, and he's experimenting on people, but for the moment everything is fine.

Besides, good news! There's a new Warden in our midst.

Sadly, Velanna is like a blonde, bitchier, and more hateful elf version of Morrigan.

I think I hate my life.

All my love,

Your wife Elissa.


My darling,

That was very sweet of you, sending chocolates like that! If I didn't know any better, I would think you were spoiling me. :D

And truly, Alistair, I can handle things here. Honestly, you would think I hadn't fought the archdemon or something! Really, I'm fine. Yeah, the kidnapping thing was a little scary, but we got out. And hey, it was even easier than escaping Fort Drakon, if that makes you feel any better.

(Truly though, darling, we should really look it to upping the security in that place. I mean, if my lovable dog Snuggles, and Sten, the least stealthy person alive, can break us out of there then we have some serious problems.)

Speaking of which, how is Snuggles, by the way? I know my poor Pup sprained his ankle hunting and that's why he couldn't come with me, but I do miss him terribly. You better be taking care of him for me, alright?

I still miss you terribly,

Your wife, Elissa


Alistair,

WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU FORGOT ABOUT MY DOG? HOW COULD YOU?

DOES THIS MEAN MY POOR BABY IS IN DENERIM? ALONE?

IF SNUGGLES ISN'T IN PERFECT HEALTH WHEN I GET BACK, I WILL NEVER HAVE SEX WITH YOU EVER AGAIN FOR THE REST OF OUR LIVES.

No love,

Your very angry wife Elissa


Alistair,

Eamon better be taking care of my dog, or I will hurt you.

Elissa


Chancellor Eamon,

If something happens to my dog while I'm away, you can kiss your position goodbye.

Queen Elissa Cousland-Theirin

PS—by "kiss your position goodbye" I actually mean I will be cutting off your balls and feeding them to Snuggles. My dog better be well.


Alistair,

Thank you. I'm fine now. Really, all those letters you sent me were very sweet. I particularly enjoyed the poetry—though next time, could you please refrain from comparing my lady-parts to cheese? I'd appreciate it.

Anyway, I figure since I was willing to speak to you again, I should keep you updated on what's going on here.

First, did you know the Deep Roads extended all the way to Amarathine? The dwarves were really amazing back in the day. Anyway, we killed about ten broodmothers, which was awesome! It's always nice killing broodmothers—I always feel like I just made my job ten times easier with each one I kill.

Do you remember me telling you about the Architect? Well, it turns out he's fighting a darkspawn called The Mother. I don't know much about her, to be honest. Still, it's so strange to see the darkspawn organized like this—I thought they were suppose to fade into chaos as soon as the archdemon was destroyed? I've never heard of darkspawn being organized like this!

Though on to the good news: I finally recruited someone sane! She's a dwarf named Sigrun, a former member of the Legion of the Dead, and quite possible the only sane Warden outside of yours truly. I think she and I will get along smashingly, really.

All my love,

Your wife Elissa


My beloved,

I probably should have warned you that I have a private sort through my mail for me. Needless to say, Private Wilabelle has now seen more of the King than she ever thought she would. I'm also not sure her face will ever be any color other than red, either, at least whenever she talks to me.

I thought it was a good picture, at least. It definitely showed off your good side.

Missing your "royal scepter" far too much,

Your wife Elissa

PS—Who on Thedas did you convince to paint that for you, anyway? It was very good.


My darling Alistair,

Oh, you think I should pose nude for a painting just for you, do you?

We'll see. I make no promises.

Missing you terribly,

Elissa

PS—Private Wilabelle still won't look me in the eyes. I have to sort through my mail myself! Thanks a lot!

PSS—Totally worth it for that picture, though.


My Alistair,

Sorry it's been a while again, love. Had to go wade through a cursed swamp, get trapped in the Fade, fight a pride demon, and recruit a dead guy. Same as usual. Work work work, it's all I do! Ferelden better be really grateful this time, because I think I'm retiring after this. Have to work on making an heir for the throne, after all.

Oh, and there's a new recruit! He's a spirit of the Fade trapped in a dead Grey Warden's body. Yeah, I don't recruit normal people, I know, shut up. We've started calling him Justice. He's actually a really sweet guy; he's just really confused about the physical world. Oh, and he's kind of obsessed with me. Actually, he reminds me of you, if you were a spirit of Justice placed in a Grey Warden's decomposing corpse. We just hope he doesn't fall to pieces while fighting darkspawn.

All my love,

Your wife Elissa


[there are tearstains on the letter]

My love,

I—I don't know what I'm doing anymore. I just killed a bunch of innocent people and I—I—

Maker, Alistair, they were innocent! They wanted f-f-food and I had them killed.

I-I tried to convince them t-that peace w-was the solution, b-but they didn't listen! You know me, I can usually convince people to do anything, but it didn't work! They rioted! They rioted and I had my men kill them.

I'm a horrible Queen!

Oh, and Bann Esmerelle tried to assassinate me today, to top it off. Luckily, Varel was there to stop the arrow from going straight into my face.

I want to go home, my love. I miss you so much, and I hate Amarathine, and I just want someone to call me by my name, and I want my dog, and I want you and I'm tired of darkspawn already!

I feel like I've failed you, my love, and the people of Amarathine. You had so much faith in me, and then I let something like this happen. I'm so sorry.

I promise, I'll do better next time. I won't fail my people again.

With love,

Your undeserving wife, Elissa


[there are tears on the letter, as though it has been pierced by the talons of a bird.]

My love,

I do not know if you will get this letter. Currently, I am held up in the Chantry, along with all that remains of the city of Amarathine.

The darkspawn came out of nowhere. According to the messenger the Architect sent, this is the work of the Mother, though I do not know how much I can trust a talking darkspawn. So far, however, the messenger has remained true to his word, and has stayed to help us slay his kinsmen.

I worry dearly for the fates of my friends. I had to choose between the innocent people of Amarathine, and my friends back at Vigil's Keep. I choose to save the city. Varel, Nathaniel, Anders, and Oghren are there, and they are going to get swamped by darkspawn. I spent a lot of gold making that fortress nigh impenetrable, so I have faith that they can survive. Still, I worry.

I do not know what will happen in the coming days. There is a chance I will not survive the siege of Amarathine.

If that happens, I want you to know that I love you, Alistair. Always. And I will believe in you always, until my spirit travels beyond the Fade to join the Maker at his side. More than anything in this universe and beyond, I wish for your happiness. Be safe and well, my darling, and if I fall, know that my thoughts were on you the moment I drew my final breath.

Your rose,

Elissa


[this letter appears to have been written quickly, mostly scrawled on a piece of scratch paper. The Queen's royal seal is missing, though it is written in her script.]

My love,

I feel I may have made a terrible mistake.

I would say more, but I fear the information I need to tell you cannot fall into a stranger's hands.

Come to Amarathine as soon as you can, my love. It's important Grey Warden business.

Really important Grey Warden business.

All my love,

Elissa



END

A/N: Wow, this took a turn for the serious when I wasn't looking. Dang.

I hope the switch wasn't too sudden for any of you.

I basically wanted to capture my first run-through in Awakenings in letters from my PC's POV. And like my own experience, it started out really humorously and ended on a rather somber note.

For those absolutely curious, I killed the Architect. I still don't know if it was the right decision or not. And everything mentioned in the letters happened to my PC in game, with the exception of Dog's mysterious disappearance and Alistair's sexy pictures. :D

And yeah, my rogue with like 50 cunning FAILED A PERSUADE CHECK TO STOP A RIOT. I was really torn up about it, and I think my PC would have felt she failed as a Queen.

Also, I don't know if this is a glitch or not, but as soon as I recruit Justice, I got +100 approval from him for recruiting him. So he was like, "OMG YOU ARE AMAZING~!" And I had never said anything to him before. Compared to some of the glitches other people have gotten, I feel rather fortunate.

jak