Chapter 2

Lying in bed, she woke with a pounding in her heart and a scream clawing its way out from her throat. Bolting upright, she clenched the blankets with her fists, heart beating like thunder in her ears, glancing around the room quickly reassured her that the wardings had held and Isabela still slept peacefully at her side. Marian dropped her face into her hands as the tears she'd been holding back flood down her face.

She groaned running a hand through her short black hair and smiled tiredly, gathering her champion's armor and the staff of Parthalan. The wards held, thank the Maker my luck seems to be holding. Dressing quickly she glanced again at the sleeping pirate and sighed. Why do you have to be so damned beautiful Isabela? Hawke mused to herself, shaking her head. Kissing her lover would undo all the efforts of placing said wardings Hawke had studied and more importantly wake her.

Slipping out the door Hawke closed it silently and let go of the wardings hardly breathing, waiting for the telltale signs of Isabela waking. After several minutes of silence Hawke grinned, stiffening as a cold nose nudged her hand. Looking down into Lurk's eyes she stifled a groan and placed a finger on her lips. Lurk wagged his tail as he followed her to the railing and cocked his head curiously at her.

"Shh Lurk, I don't want to wake Isabela, or the crew." Hawke bent down on one knee as she rubbed her dog's ears. She smiled at him and then glanced at the shore, "think I can get to the shore and back before anyone notices?" she asked and Lurk wagged his tail happily at her. "That's easy for you to say," Hawke replied absently as she looked over the edge and the shore not so far away yet not so close either. "Watch Isabela for me Lurk, guard her and Maker forbid don't wake her. I'm going to practice some magic for a while." she told the dog firmly as he whinnied at her, pulling her arm gently in his mouth.

"Oi who's there?" one of the crew was out on the deck by the wheel. "Balls..."Hawke cursed under her breathe as she ducked and tensed as Lurk looked at her and the crewmate heading towards them. He barked happily running to the crew mate tongue lolling from his mouth as he pounced onto the man driving him to the deck with a healthy thud.

"Gerroff me, ya blasted mutt!"

Hawke smiled as the sailor yelled and cursed some more, though she winced at the sound of the thud, and several feet pounding up the stairs. Sighing she slid her staff into its place on her back and lowered herself over the railing, hanging perilously onto the ship as she climbed lower onto what she could only describe as a raised platform though she was sure Isabela would have thrown a dagger at her for that assumption. Hawke readied her magic and slid into the water, using her magic to propel her through the water faster.

Hawke planted her staff as deeply as the pointed blade would go, briefly glancing around the deserted beach. Closing her eyes, she began to gather her magic as she gripped the staff and paused. "And for once when I actually need a Saarebas, or one those frenzied blood mages, they're not here." Hawke's laugh was slightly bitter though she had to smile at irony of her request.

She grinned for a minute and shrugged her shoulders as she gripped the staff again and pulled with her magic, pushing her body and staff away from the spot she had marked with an X.

An explosive noise echoed in ringing ears as dirt and pebbles erupted around her in a rushing roar. "Achoo!" Hawke opened her eyes cautiously she looked at the furrowed carter in the ground for a minute before realizing she'd only pulled herself back a couple of steps."Damnit!" Hawke swore in frustration. "How do they do it?!" she kicked an offending stone angrily and glared at it, thinking hard; she stood there for a moment blinking as the sand swirled about her.

"Maker's hairy balls... I am not made for the sea." Hawke sighed sitting down heavily as she glared out at the offending water in front of her. She stared out at Isabela's ship as she thought in silence about the past few days.

"I am not going to sea-food, it's disgusting!" Marian glared over at her pirate queen who was staring at her incredulously.

"Hawke," Isabela began slowly as she stared at her lover, "we don't have anything else to eat."

"I'll eat those biscuits we stashed in the hold from the last raid." Hawke replied as she shrugged, "I hate fish. It stinks and tastes…awful." She wrinkled her nose as she stared at fish on the plate in front of her.

"You ate the last one last night while we were drinking," Isabela scoffed as the woman paled and stared at her in horror.

"Shit…" Hawke muttered as she looked at the fish on the plate in disgust. "You know Fenris was right," she leaned back tilting her head at the pirate sitting across her. "It stinks and tastes awful."

"It's just fish," Isabela replied as she crossed over to Hawke's chair and straddled her lover as she picked up the fish, holding it before the grimacing woman. "Don't tell me the Champion of Kirkwall is afraid of a little fish?"

"I'm never going to eat it." Hawke breathed thinly as she leaned back in the chair, her hands sliding up Isabela's legs, in an attempt to distract her.

"We're a week away from port," Isabela scolded her gently, though the tick in her eyes gave way to the frustration she left unsaid.

"Then I'll use magic and survive till then." Marian grinned lunging forward pulling Isabela into a fierce kiss.

"Hawke, that's not-" Isabela barely managed to interject before desire overrode reason as Marian began to trail kisses down her neck; Isabela gasped as she began to trail lower, moaning softly as her hands began to tease her.

Hawke rubbed her head as she stood tiredly and started to head back to the ship, it was going to be a long day she decided when she'd finally reached her destination. She swayed again for a minute before sighing and glanced around the beach.

"Sorry," she mumbled as she used her magic to draw the life source from the two crabs still fighting over their piece of food, whatever it was. A sudden rush of colors and light filled her vision as she trembled briefly as she was suddenly brimming strength and energy again. Turning her back on the beach she gathered up her power once again as she prepared to cast herself out towards the sea, to Isabela.