A/N: Another kink meme fill. (My fills aren't very kinky, are they? Maybe I'll have to take on something a little kinkier...) Anyway, this one, aside from being unbeta'd like the rest, was quick and dirty, written and posted in under 24 hours. Usually I take way more time, but I wanted to see what I could come up with on the fly.
Prompt was: Mage!Hawke has been caught and made Tranquil. Fenris is still in love, and is very tender and protective towards her/him.
The teasing, happy lilt in her voice; that light, airy bell tone was gone.
Just... gone from her laugh as if it was never there; as if he imagined it.
It all happened so fast; secrecy and malevolence hung heavy in the air that night.
He should have known better. He should have heard something from somewhere, some rumour. Surely when the Champion of Kirkwall was slated to be made Tranquil there must have been a date set; a time. Surely he could have saved her from this fate; surely he could have saved the last of her line from...
"There are some things worse than death..." was what that abomination said to him once.
Fenris never believed it; never believed any of it. But now as she stood emotionless behind the door of that thing worse than death; when she needed him the most; when Fenris would have dropped to his knees and done anything the abomination asked of him just to save her from that fate... he was nowhere to be found.
Anders owed her; she let him go that day when the Chantry's walls splintered and cracked; blown apart by hate and a desperate man's desire for vengeance.
Hawke saved each one of her companions in a way, but now no one was to be found when she needed saving.
Where did everyone go when they left?
Where did she go?
Day bled into night while he slowly descended into madness. He could feel it.
What was he before her? He could scarcely remember a time before they were together. He lived in the past, seeing her everywhere... feeling her in the bed beside him only to turn towards her and feel nothing but a cold, empty space. After the lyrium was burned into his skin, he could not remember his past though he longed to.
But now all he wanted was to forget. Not her, just the pain. Such things could not be selective he supposed, so if forgetting the pain meant losing the last piece of her he had, he'd live with it the rest of his life as long as he never forgot the smell of her hair and the warmth of her body.
When he felt the need to be close to her, the only place he could see her was in the Gallows; never again in her home.
Her aura, that lovely second skin of life and excitement that caused sparks between them so many times was just space; empty air between them now. He watched her move mechanically from place to place, carrying a basket, sometimes books, sometimes a satchel, speaking with that voice devoid of ... anything that made her who she was.
He wasn't even sure if she would recognize him were he to look into her eyes. Not knowing what the rite had done to her made him anxious and scared. He knew what he'd heard about those who were made Tranquil, but he didn't want to accept any of it.
So, from the shadows he would stare at her, take in all the movements, comparing them to what she was... looking for any indication that this reality wasn't reality at all. In the rain, the heat, the cold, the dark, he stood with a cloak around his shoulders, hood drawn over his head just so no one would recognize him as hers... when she was still... herself.
How many times had he come to visit her? He didn't know.
Night after night, he forced himself to relive some of the more poignant memories they'd made together.
The night they first met; when she taught him to read; how she helped him break the chains that bound him and made him a free man. The first touch of their lips; how she felt inside, clamped so tightly around him, their bodies sliding and gliding against one another's...
The nights when he awoke in a panic; a sweat; choking on the past... she soothed him. Kissed his lips, his face, his branded skin; his soul. A love he never imagined he might possess was given to him freely and willingly at no cost; no blood; no sacrifice even though he was more than willing to give her that and more.
Other nights it was she who had the dreams. A weak mage was a danger to themselves and others around them; temptation always knocking on their door; power dangled in front of their faces every night when they walked the Fade in their slumber. Sometimes she talked about it, told him how hard it actually was to resist and constantly be on guard, while she stroked his snowy white hair; dark whispers in his ear.
But she was not weak. So then... why?
She was a mage, yes, but also a Champion. A paragon of the wretched little city she so loved, but now only existed inside of. She helped the city and it's people not only then, but for years before.
Fenris stood with her on that day of reckoning when they sided with her kind. How could she be asked to do anything different? How could he not be with her no matter the cost?
And so it went.
For a year after, there was backlash at every corner, angry residents throwing threatening words at her... She had him fooled with her brave face, but he should have known... shouldn't have let that love between them make him soft. It was all his fault. He wasn't with her that night... they'd had a fight about something he couldn't even remember now.
All he remembered was that it had been the first night in years he hadn't spent in her bed.
News of what happened reached him the next day, a vague rumour that worried him, but even so, he never imagined it would ever turn out like this.
But it was true, and she was gone. Just like that.
Perhaps days later, his sanity hanging by a string, word from her brother reached his hands in the form of a letter.
Inside it held the name of a single Templar.
No one special, just someone who hated her; hated mages, just like he used to before he met her. However, the Templars protected their own, and the Champion of Kirkwall was made tranquil in a single night with nobody to claim the deed.
But he waited. Someone was bound to give him the opening he needed.
Biding his time, he collected information about those vile men that took her from him.
He discovered that the Templar and his fanatics had been planning her kidnapping and spiritual raping ever since the Templars were cut down to size in Kirkwall.
So he stalked them, haunted them; lurking in the shadows, whispering words while they slept; being that creeping thing just outside the field of their vision. It never took very long. Templars, for all their posturing and armour were but flesh and blood. They could be driven to madness just like any other man; just like himself.
One gray day he booked passage for Seheron; a seedy late night escape for two. A little extra coin in the hand of the captain allowed him no nosey questions about himself nor his future travelling companion.
That night Carver looked the other way as he let the elf into the barracks...
... and then let him go without so much as a second glance after Fenris reappeared covered from fingertip to elbow in thick, sticky blood.
Taking their lives was quiet; all gasps and strangled breaths as he moved between their quarters, crushing their hearts one by one. Five in all. His own closure after the deaths of Hadriana and Danarius could barely be called that, but these deaths were not for him; they were for her.
Blood stained and wild, he escaped in the darkness; his vengeance finally brought down upon those who sealed her from him.
Dried blood still all over his body, he snatched his love from the Gallows.
He hated to do it, but a quick whiff of foul smelling liquid on a cloth over her mouth allowed him to retrieve her with no questions. Though, he knew that there would be a good many of them when she awoke. By then he hoped to be far away from the Free Marches, near his former home in the corrupt Tevinter Imperium and closer to a solution for her ravaged and severed mind. He hated the thought of going back there, but the Magisters and their power was the best lead he had.
It would all be for her until he got her back and regained what they lost. He would not rest until his newly shredded soul was repaired by her revival. She would be perfect again, like she was before. If it cost his life, he'd gladly give it... for without her, he was nothing. He had waited all his life for something he didn't know he wanted until he had it.
And somehow he let it slip away.
He held her lovingly as she lingered somewhere between a dead sleep and consciousness, stroking her hair, formulating plans and making arrangements for a new life.
Staying ahead of his aching heart and despairing doubts, he also tried to stay away from the warm, nagging darkness that lingered in his mind, a little too comforting.
There was a time that Fenris never believed he would consider such a thing, but...
If she were truly lost, and there were no other options, he vowed he would rescue her even if he had to make a deal with a demon himself.