A/N: Meant to answer the question "What did Fenris really think was in the chest during the first part of Bait & Switch?"

This is about to have significance for my main fic, 'The Journal of Marian Hawke,' but I think it could certainly be a standalone explanation. It sounds like something a magister like Danarius would do.


Letter written on very fine, expensive paper, folded and sealed with a large blood-red wax seal bearing Danarius's runic sigil. The ink is rich and dark, and the paper smells faintly of the Nevarran cedar used to line the desk drawers of the steward's desk in Fenris's mansion. The handwriting is very practiced but unfamiliar.

Found by Fenris on the dead body of the Tevinter bounty hunter captain he killed moments after meeting Hawke in the Alienage, the night of 9 Bloomingtide, 9:31 Dragon.


Captain,

Ensure that your men are in place within the abandoned alienage hovel and secreted near the alienage square each and every night until the trap is sprung. Magister Danarius is certain that his lost wolf will eventually take the bait. He is most eager to reclaim his pet, but he is also willing to wait patiently rather than have it scamper away again.

In the meantime, continue to have the few men posing as smugglers to be seen and overheard discussing the contents of the chest in the tavern. Magister Danarius has implored me to reiterate that the key should only be spoken of vaguely to keep the reports believable; say that it was stolen or found, but not when or where. Do not ascribe it any shape or description. I do not know exactly what it is Magister Danarius speaks of, myself — only that the slave desires this key to unlock the memories of his past.

Magister Danarius tells me he spoke of it occasionally to his Little Wolf, and that his creation had shown prior interest in it. He will know what it means, when your men are overheard referring to this key — which the Magister is certain they will be, if they have not already been.

The rest of your men should be kept well out of sight. The wolf is cunning, and he may slip our nets again if he is alerted to the true numbers that our employer has finally brought to bear on this task. Also, do not alert the elf to the presence of our employer himself — Magister Danarius has been vociferous that he would prefer to avoid a direct confrontation.

Continue to make your regular reports directly to me at Magister Danarius's temporary residence in Hightown. Take great pains to ensure that you are not seen coming directly here, and use the back entrance.

Remember, capture the wolf, if at all possible. Render him unconscious or sedate him if he will not go quietly. As mentioned previously, do not bind him, for it will not hold long. Send your fastest runner here, and take the wolf immediately to the next Aquiline Galley ship leaving port. Magister Danarius and his entourage will meet you there for a swift departure.

Kill the wolf only if absolutely necessary. Magister Danarius is most anxious to end this three-year long hunt and return to Minrathous to continue his experiments. He would prefer, however, not to have to start afresh.

Yours, etc.

~ Servinius, steward to Magister Danarius


Letter torn into pieces and scattered about the front of Danarius's mansion after Fenris realized his former master had fled. Pieces gathered up and thrown into an urn just inside the front door once Fenris decided to remain. Promptly forgotten when a thorough search of the mansion turned up no items of significance, and none that affected Fenris's memory.