A movement caused me to awaken. I opened my eyes and saw Alistair standing by a window with his back to me. He had shifted his weight and the armor clacking had awakened me. He was in very deep thought. I didn’t move I wanted to just look at him, and so I did. He was angry I could tell. His feet were planted wide apart and his arms were crossed over his chest. He did that when he was mad. I couldn’t see his face but I could tell by the set of his shoulders that he was mad. He was dressed in the red armor of Redcliffe which I assumed was a set of the Arl’s. A Redcliffe Elite Shield hung on his back along with his swords.
I was at peace because I knew now that Anora couldn’t hurt him. It was just her followers that could do any harm in the future and I was sure Arl Eamon would set that to rights in no time at all. For now, my new king was safe. I had fulfilled Cailan’s wishes. Step one was done, now on for step two. Unfortunately, that would have to wait until my leg healed once more. What rotten luck I was having.
I continued to gaze at him. He was so handsome, his strawberry blonde hair tousled in front the way he liked it and cut very short. His hair was thick and I imagine if he allowed it to grow out, it would be wavy, thick, heavy, and very hot under his helmets. Our new king had a fine body and I knew it well. His shoulders, very broad which ran down to a sculptured chest and stomach, corded with muscles with smooth skin. His back the same. His arms were bulging with muscle from swinging sword and shield. Large wide hands with long fingers that could be gentle or brutal depending on their activity. The armor made his shoulders appear even wider than they actually were. All of this narrowed down to strong hips and massive muscular thighs and thick wide muscular calves and he had large feet. He carried his weight well. He was tall, taller than my brother and father. He was also taller than Arl Eamon. If Alistair had long hair, him and Cailan would nearly pass for twins they looked so much alike. There was a noble presence about him, it had always been there. Even I had realized this at Ostagar. I thought at first he had been a noblemen’s bastard son and not a royal bastard. I think from the beginning I sensed or knew who he was before he told me. I had been drawn to him immediately. We had been unsure of each other at first. I guess I had proven myself to him, keeping him alive. He’d done his part as well. He was a brave fighter and he had fought just as bravely and fiercely as I had for Denerim and all through the Blight. I’d keep him alive and he had done the same for me with his shield arm.
I knew he was unsure of himself and what he faced, but I also knew Alistair had been educated properly within the Chantry. He had earned his knighthood; he just hadn’t become a full Templar and all because of Duncan. He had the education to be king. All he had to do was learn the art of governance and I knew he’d do fine. Arl Eamon would see to the next phase of his education. Being raised the way he had been would give him an advantage of not being raised in a palace like Cailan had been. Alistair would understand the plight and needs of the average person in Ferelden. It would be hard, but I knew Alistair had the basis down and he had loads of charm and a natural grace to see him through. He wouldn’t make rash decisions. He would study a problem to death before making any decisions for his people. It was his way. Given he seemed to have a knack for reading and studying which he enjoyed. Many a night in our tent I’d fall asleep with him still up reading by torch light. I think he read every book we came across and swiped.
Once our meals were done, new training, and personal needs all done for the night, there wasn’t much else to do except read or repair equipment and of course sleep; for Alistair and me being Wardens this was hard at times. Sleep for Wardens was a rarity and you grabbed it when you could and prayed the nightmares wouldn’t interrupt a good night of rest.
I also looked around and realized I was in my old bedroom within our family estate here in Denerim; well at least I was out of Fort Drakon and actually in my own home now. No more being bossed around by Arl Eamon, or Fort Captains.
From the looks of the room, everything within the room was new. Why? Even the walls had been freshly plastered. We’d never used plaster before. This was odd. There was a new large spindle bed with draperies and canopy, new armoires and chests, a ladies dressing table, new bookcases, and what appeared to be new trunks lined the walls as well and new armor stands dotted the room. Brand new rugs on the floor and what looked like a new fur on the floor for Thor to snuggle into. A large fire burned in the hearth and my personal bathing pool nearby.
No books for the new cases, so most of those most have been carted off or they hadn’t been put back on the new bookcases yet. A pang touched my heart. Our family had one of the largest libraries in all of Ferelden thanks to my grandfather. I wondered what had actually taken place in here. Nothing good I was sure. I hoped the ladies of our household hadn’t been harmed to badly. I’m sure it was bad and everyone was keeping things from me. I also knew my brother would see everything was also set to rights for our servants and retainers. Fergus must have tapped into the hidden reserves of gold that we had put by in case of an emergency. What we had been through could be considered an emergency; I’m sure my parents approved wherever they were in the fade.
I was also sure Fergus was recruiting men to go with him to Highever when we left after Alistair’s coronation. I was dreading the trip and what we would find at Highever. We had to go to secure the Teynir for Alistair and for my brother to reclaim his birthright. I was going home soon; but, it would never be my home again like it should have been. I would recuperate and get ready for my trip to Rainesfere that had to be made. Hopefully, I wouldn’t have to make a trip to Orlais. That might be awkward to explain. Then I had to return and prepare for my trip to take my command of Vigil’s Keep.
Our estate here in Denerim was made of lighter sandstone than our family castle at Highever which was built of granite, of course our estate here was not nearly as big. Our estate was about the same size as Arl Eamon and the Arl of Denerim homes. We’d employed a large staff here as well. Here the estate was not fully connected but a complex of buildings. We had the larger keep house for the family and our guests and household staff. This house had five bedrooms with bathing chambers in each one. Servant’s quarters in the top floors. There was the Great Hall, also another large library, an atrium for my mother to entertain ladies of the realm. There was a large massive dining hall for our garrison to share in another building, and private dining room for our family. A large barracks several stories high to house troops that came with my father to the Landsmeet every year which could hold up to ten thousand men at one time and their own training grounds. This house also had numerous towers which had been built rounded to guard against attack; there was several towers along with high thick walls and gatehouses. A large bailey opened into a large court yard and of course the front entrance. Our entire estate was walled in with large gatehouses throughout. The main entrance housed at least 20 men at the front gates alone. They needed that many to open the portcullis. Cousland Court was a small city within a city. We had our own armory. There was a massive stable which was underground, which housed our oxen, and the warhorses of my father, mother, brother, and me. Livestock was housed here as well: chickens, pigs, a few head of beef when our family would be in the city with a smokehouse and a head of beef would be butchered before our arrival. We also had our own dairy house, vegetable and herb gardens to wonder around. A wine cellar with rows and rows of racks, even though most of the wines and ale served was prepared at Highever much of it was stored here for the troops stationed here. Thousands of bottles of wine, in their own cellars beneath the kitchens of the estate were stored here along with thousands of small and medium casts of good dark Highever ale was also brought and stored here from Highever.
There was the families private gardens full of flowers just off of the Great Hall downstairs with doors opening up to allow access to the gardens when my mother and father would host a ball during the Landsmeet. Being a Teynir meant my father and mother were obliged to do this. The formal gardens had hedges to get lost in, and numerous statues and garden seats to spend a wonderful evening outside enjoying the atmosphere. I’m sure more remained here than at Highever. One couldn’t strip an estate clean and others in the vicinity not notice. Our estate was in the northern part of Denerim. Ours was the largest in the city and we even boosted our own small Alienage for our own elves that had been on staff, they had their own place within our home so they wouldn’t have to stay in the awful Denerim Alienage. My father always allowed our elves who had family in Denerim to visit with their relatives when they weren’t needed at our estate for duty. They could visit as long as they got back to duty on time.
I scooted around in bed trying to get more comfortable when Alistair heard me and he turned around. Our eyes locked. Oh yes, he was mad and he wasn’t hiding it.
He walked over to my bed and gently sat down at my side close to my waist. Being careful of my leg, this was propped up on pillows and my toes where cold even under the warm wool blanket and duvet on my bed which was a nice emerald color. This is one of my favorite colors which my brother knew of course. The color was known as Highever Green.
“I see you’ve woken up, how are you feeling?”
He snorted and narrowed his eyes.
“Well?” “Is that all you have to say?”
“Being dropped in the middle of the training field here by a dragon, causing holy terror within the entire city and with you broken and bleeding once more and all you have to say is you’re well?”
“Yes, actually, I feel really good.”
Alistair pinched his nose.
Well that wasn’t good, he is really mad at me.
“If you weren’t so injured again, I’d take you over my knee and throttle you.”
“Was it worth it?”
“Whatever was so vitally important – you hurting yourself all over again – that you had to leave this city to do – against my orders?”
I lowered my eyes so I wouldn’t have to look into his. Which Alistair wouldn’t allow when he took his fingers and lifted my chin making me look up at him.
“I’m waiting for an explanation Commander?”
“Well, uh, um, I wasn’t supposed to get hurt for one and two yes it was worth it.”
Alistair had placed both of his hands on my upper arms and was drawing me to him. Oh Maker, don’t do this I thought.
Softly he whispered in my ear.
“Your right leg is now in worse shape than before. Is it going to become a habit of watching Wynne reach inside your leg and snap the bones back together then drain herself of healing magic to heal you?”
He had raised his eyebrows at me with his inquiry and he had drawn me right against his chest and was looking down into my eyes. His eyes glowed with his unusual honey amber color I could always drown in, were beckoning me in.
“No Your Highness, it won’t happen again?”
He took his nose and nuzzled mine.
Softly he said, “That is wonderful to hear Commander and for your sake I hope it’s the truth.”
Oh so gently, he kissed my cheek, just the barest hint of a kiss touched my check. His right hand moved up to the back of my neck and he drew me fully into his chest. I laid my hands on chest. He was so warm. His fingers massaging the back of my scalp, which were fully relaxing me, as only he knew how to do. His left arm had come around me and he was holding me to him. He was looking down at me as I looked up at him from beneath my lashes. The upper part of my body was half way across his lap.
I heard him whisper in my ear once more as he brought his cheek to lie against mine.
“Where did you go My Lady and how in the Maker’s name did you get a dragon to fly you back to Denerim?”
For a moment I was pulled into his charm and reassurance once more and angry with myself for allowing myself to be placed in this position. I fell under his spell every time. He was so relaxed even though he was mad and I knew it. Oh those Templar skills were in play, working at their finest. He had charged the whole atmosphere to be calm and gentle. The sneak, I knew his game. He was my one true weakness. I couldn’t help it. I allowed him to hold me. I wasn’t fooling myself, I saw clearly what he was doing and my mind was thinking of an answer as my body enjoyed the warmth and comfort of my one true love.
I nuzzled against him, enjoying the feeling of being in his arms. I knew it would be short-lived. This was only happening because we were alone.
“I went to a small village south of Dragon’s Peak and before Lothering. It was a promise I made to a lady soldier at Ostagar just after the war council with King Cailan. Her name was Rhiannon and she was to be on the front lines with Cailan and she knew she wouldn’t survive, she seemed to sense it. She heard Calian tell me and Duncan that you and I were to go to the tower and she felt we might have a chance of survival. So she stopped me and asked me of this favor if I survived Ostagar, which was to take the last of her pay to her mother. I gave my word I would see this done.”
“The dragon was a friend of ours.”
Alistair pulled me back and looked deep into my eyes. “Morrigan?” He asked with unconcealed hope in his voice.
His words gave me the feeling of someone just having drenched me with a bucket of ice water. Morrigan once again came between us. Damn her. I pulled fully out of his arms and settled back against the head board of my bed and crossed my arms. Looking him in the eyes. Maker forgive me my lies I thought. If I tell him it was Morrigan he will go after her. She was carrying his child after all. Unfortunately so was I. What a bloody mess this all was. If I told him the truth, he’d go after her. I knew he would. If I couldn’t have him, neither could she. No bloody way would I allow that to happen if I could stop it? I’d see him with some nobleman’s daughter before Morrigan. BLOODY HELL, I was screaming inside my head. I wanted to pound my fists on the stuffed hay filled mattress.
“No,” I said. “It was Flemeth.”
“I thought we killed her?”
“Apparently, we just put her out of commission for awhile.”
“Or Morrigan lied to you.”
“True, there is that.”
“She could have lied to both of us and she knew how to keep both of us from dying all along. You realize there might not be a child with her don’t you?”
“I’ve thought of it,” he said ever so evasively.
What the hell I thought does that mean?
“No it wasn’t Morrigan, it was Flemeth.”
“Why didn’t she heal you, she is a healer, even if she is a shape shifting dragon, mage, apostate, malifacurem; the list is endless really?”
“I don’t know I wasn’t in the best of circumstances to do any questioning.”
Tsk, tsk I heard my subconscious say. The lies slip out so easily.
“Well of course I had to cut a deal first.”
Alistair rolled his eyes. “Of course you did, so what do you plan to do for her?”
“I just have to take a message to someone and show up someplace later at her time and choosing.”
“What” Alistair gasped, his voice very high pitched.
“What kind of message and to whom?”
“A locket to a Dalish Keeper from some Dalish Clan traveling up north, other than this she said she’d be in touch.”
I lifted my hand and was examining my fingernails in great detail. I was trying to keep my eye movements under control.
“All three of us were running from bandits that I didn’t want to kill. They were just desperate starving men is all, and I just didn’t have the heart to kill them. I knew we could outrun them. I was running behind Zevran, across a wide stream when my foot hit a mossy boulder under my foot and I slipped, lost my balance and fell on my bad leg which connected with the rock beneath and snap went my leg. Leliana and Zevran pulled me out of the stream and I’m afraid they had to kill those people anyway. I was busy throwing up in the bushes to do much when Flemeth stepped out of the forest and finished them off. Then we had our little talk and I made my bargain, then she flew me back to Denerim to get me back to Wynne, she didn’t have time to heal me, she was on her way somewhere else or so she said.”
“So there you go full story.”
“Am I forgiven now?”
Alistair leaned in close to me and looked me square in the eye. “I’m not sure,” he said.
“Why ever not,” I huffed crossing my arms tighter, which was causing my female attributes to stick out up top. Don’t flinch or jerk your eyes I thought, rogue training, rogue training!
He brought his face and lips so very close to mine. He glanced down at my lips and I was doing the same to his. Kiss me I thought. My heart fluttered as well as other parts of my anatomy when he was so close.
Our eyes meet.
“Bellavalia, don’t ever lie to me again. Because once I’m crowned I won’t be able to let you get away with it, Warden or not. Do you understand?” He whispered, looking back up into my eyes.
He took his finger and started to trace my skin at the top of my breast from my nightshift strap which had fallen over my right shoulder exposing the top of my right breast which still had scars still healing from the Arch Demon, which he traced ever so softly. His finger was sending pools of warmth through my breast.
I held myself perfectly still and continued to look into his eyes. I knew it wouldn’t take much more for either of us. I knew if I made the move it would be hot, and very fast for the both of us. I also knew we couldn’t be found in this type of position if Fergus or Wardens came into my room.
“I don’t know why you are lying to me; but, I know you well enough that you wouldn’t have left to do this thing unless it meant something important. I trust you in all things. Don’t make me ever regret that trust. Promise me.”
“I promise,” I barely managed to whisper.
He nodded to me. His eyes were getting heavy lidded in that way when he was aroused.
“You’ve gained weight.”
What, where is that coming….oh no!
I looked up into his eyes and held my breath. Yes, I’ve gained weight.
“Yes, Arl Eamon’s staff feed us good at the fort and I made up for being asleep for nearly two weeks with no food, I ate heartily and with gusto.”
“Hmm,” was all he murmured?
After a beat he said as though in afterthought “a Warden’s appetite.”
He kept teasing my flesh which was now on fire since he was lost in thought at the moment. Oh please stop, I was burning up from his touch. He used to do this in our camp in our tent. I’d be on fire by the time he realized he had brought me to heated bliss. Oh my love, please stop.
“No more running amuck and not telling anyone where you are going?”
“No, I’ll do as I’m told for once.”
“Just once,” he asked with a grin.
“Just this once,” I confirmed.
“I was so worried.”
He brought his forehead to mine.
“The Wardens need you badly Commander, and Ferelden still does.”
“You are their hope and inspiration.”
“I thought that was your job.”
He laughed, pulling back, “Yes well…I’ll do my best, but I can’t hold a candle to you.”
“You’ll do well as our king, I know you will, be who were born to be Your Highness.”
“For you Commander I’ll try.”
“Will Zevran and Leliana be back from you’re adventures soon?”
“Yes, most likely by tomorrow sometime I’m sure. They will travel fast but not as fast as I did. So eager to interview them on our adventures are you?”
“Yes,” he said dryly, eyeballing me.
“They won’t tell you anything I promise you they won’t.”
“They are both in my employ and unless they tell me where you’ve been and what you’ve been doing, that employment will end before it’s begun, you really don’t want that do you?”
“Do you trust me?”
“You know I do.”
“Alright, then leave Zev and Lei out of this. Or would you have preferred I’d gone alone with no help at all?”
“I’d prefer you not have gone at all on whatever this was you were doing.”
“Well, it was just something I promised to do; I gave my word, which is all I have left.”
“So, all of this was necessary?”
“Alright then, I’ll only question Zevran and Leliana enough to appease Eamon.”
“Can’t he just take your word what I did was necessary.”
“No, he can’t, you created a stir here leaving, and in the manner in which you returned. You also defied my orders, along with the other Wardens. He isn’t very pleased with you at the moment. You realize that you ursped my authority as king.”
“I didn’t mean it that way, you also had no right to order me keep under guard.”
“It was necessary until we figure out about Anora and Howe and who might still be working with them; your brother is also under guard for now as well. He is not to go anywhere alone regarding his own duties unless Templars who are loyal to me go with him. The Wardens are also concerned for you on who tried to murder you’re entire family and if they remain a threat to you. I can’t allow that, you and your brother need to remain alive in case something happens to me.”
“I’m not afraid of Anora or any of Howe’s men, they need to fear me and none of us are going to allow anyone to get to you if we can help it.”
“I don’t bow to Arl Eamon, Your Highness, for one I outrank him, and second, I’m a Warden, and we don’t bow to anyone unless we wish too, or have you forgotten this so soon?”
“No, I haven’t forgotten; but there is such a thing as diplomatic relationships which as Warden Commander you are going to have to learn.”
“I don’t believe I need a lesson in this area.”
“Are you sure?”
“Are you going to give me this lesson yourself?”
That smirk of his appeared across his face.
His finger continued to trace the scar on my breast and he raised his eyes from my breast to my face.”
“Will you let me teach you this lesson?”
“Are you sure you’ve read up on the material enough Your Highness?”
“Well now Commander, you know me I read all the time, always seeking knowledge to better myself, so yes, I’m confident I could teach you.”
“I’m glad to hear you gaining confidence in yourself.”
“You helped me gain confidence in other areas as well Commander.”
“Did I now?”
“Oh yes, I learned a lot from you.”
“Did you now?”
“Hmmm,” he said. He lowered his lips to mine and kissed me gently.
“I’m happy you’re back and relatively safe and on the mend once more.”
“Will you please try to avoid dragons in the near future so I don’t worry and can do my job as king; it’s not just you I have to worry about now?”
“You don’t need to worry about me, I’ll be fine.”
“My lady you wound me truly, I’ll always worry about you.”
“Don’t, you can’t, it’s not your place now.”
He started to speak and I placed my finger over his lips.
“I don’t know if I can be your friend any longer; I don’t know if I can do without you in my life, both of our duties say we must. I need time away from you, I’ll only know then, just do well for the people of Ferelden, and do it for me.”
“For you, my lady, anything you desire and that is within my power to do, always.”
“For you, Your Highness, my fealty and that of the Wardens always; oh by-the-way, you’re the only one I will ever bow to, nobody else.”
“Alright, just me then,” he said.
“You and only you will I ever bow to Your Highness; because you saved my life.”
“I’d do it again if you asked me.”
“Yes, my lady I would, I didn’t do what I did for you to get yourself killed on whatever it was you needed to do.”
“My duty as a Warden means I could die anytime. You know this.”
“If anyone can survive it’s you, I want you healed and fully before your command at the Vigil, so do as Wynne says until you take your Command. She will also go to Highever with you and your brother for a time to make sure you are fully healed. I command you to do as she tells you.”
He raised my fingers to his lips and kissed them, and then he stood to go.
“I’ll see you at the ceremony then?”
“Of course you will.”
“You’ll be wearing a gown to the ball later in the evening as well; I’ve never seen you in a gown.” A mischievous twinkle appeared in his eyes.
“A step up from darkspawn gore all over me I’m sure.”
He laughed, “Well I could dress in a gown and dance the remigold; that would set their tongues to wagging.”
Alistair did a small jig for me.
“As much as I’d like to see that, you better not.”
“Will you mind being my first dance partner?”
“I’m not very good at dancing. And I’d…his voice died away and once again I saw the man who was so unsure of himself, the one I met at Ostagar.”
“If it will put your mind at ease I’d be honored to open the ball with you.”
“I’ll see you then.”
“Yes, until then.”
“Take grave care my lady.”
He left my room and I was alone.
I expected screaming and yelling which he could let lose when he chose to do, especially when he felt strongly about something. Alistair didn’t hesitate to voice his opinions on something he felt strongly about. Thus, his actions just now showed me many things. He would use his natural charm to get the answers he wanted in running his kingdom which was good and I’m sure if I wasn’t who I was he would never have told me directly that he knew I lied to him. I also knew nobody else would ever get away with this on him. Eamon’s training had already begun since I’d been away. Alistair, as my new Monarch, had just given me fair warning to not try it again. I was forgiven this time because of who and what I was to him, I’d used up my one and only don’t step on the Monarch’s toes card. Good to know I guess. Well this certainly was new and not the Alistair I truly knew. Alistair was already stepping into his role as Monarch as he should.
I also realized that I’d never be able to raise my children here in Ferelden which is what I’d thought. I’d been thinking of one of the many small houses on Highever property I could see my children raised and them still remain here in Ferelden. I knew now without a doubt he’d always keep tabs on me wherever I was or wherever my duties as a Warden Commander took me. He had the right as the Monarch of this realm to request my whereabouts at any time. Alistair as the Monarch and the First Warden would be the only ones allowed an answer without hesitation. So I had to be careful and decide on where to go with my children once they were born.
I also noticed just now, my children had been very still and I wondered if everything was alright with them.
As if in answer to my thoughts, Wynne breezed through my door.
“You’re awake finally.”
“I’m sure you can guess I’m not pleased young lady.”
“No, I know you’re not.”
“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to get hurt and worry everyone.”
“Why then did you undo all of my hard work from before?”
Wynne was standing beside my bed with her hands on her hips staring a whole through my person. Damn she could make me squirm worse than my own mother and Nan at times.
“It was something I needed to do, something important; I promised someone just before Ostagar happened; I gave my word Wynne.”
She huffed. “Zevran and Leliana would have done this for you, I’m not fooled and neither is Alistair.”
Mercy they are ganging up on me.
“What I had to do was for the security of this realm and for Alistair’s own well being. I gave my word to his brother, so yes it was important.” I pointed my finger at her, “so stop with the bossiness; I did what Cailan commanded me to do if I got Alistair on the throne. You will not tell Alistair this, or I’ll slit your throat personally, do you hear me Wynne” I warned right back in my commander’s voice.
She sat down on my bed in the place Alistair had vacated. “Yes, I hear you.”
“You know I was at the war council with Duncan and all those who were called to be there at Ostagar, and where did I go after that meeting Wynne?”
“You stayed behind with Cailan where you and he later went to his tent. You didn’t come out for about an hour. Then you meet up with Duncan and Alistair to get the rest of your orders, and then Alistair and you headed off to your assignments once you stopped one last time for supplies. I was on my way to my position and waiting for the King Cailan to call for battle.”
“Yes, that is right, I had special instructions from my former king regarding his brother’s safety and his instructions for His realm whom I would be forced to decide at the Landsmeet who would rule after him, and I also said goodbye to a good friend of mine for the last time who was also a life-long friend of my brother’s. Cailan also sent my brother to scout the wilds to get him away from that battle to keep him safe or as safe as he could for Ferelden. Yes, Wynne it was important.”
“I’m sorry,” she said patting my hand.
“Don’t do Alistair’s dirty work for him.
She laughed, “you know all of us so well.”
“Well how am I this time around?”
“Your leg is in the worse shape I’ve ever seen in my whole career being a circle mage. I don’t know I’m worried this time. Your leg didn’t want to knit back and I don’t understand why?”
Irving and I are going over books we have here and we’ve sent word to the tower to see what they can find in our libraries. I just wish one of these Orlesians Wardens was a healer, they might have some idea.
“They didn’t send me a healer?” I’d not thought to ask Kristoff about the other Wardens who came with him. So far, I only knew three of them.
She patted my hand once more. “No they didn’t, which I thought unusual also. You’ll have to request a mage from the Circle to be recruited. Irving and I have been going over a list of possible candidates we want to submit to you later. Don’t worry, we’ll figure this out and get you back on your feet in no time.”
“Listen and listen well Commander, you’re bleeding in your private parts and you and I both know this shouldn’t be happening since you’re a Warden and I’m sure you will heed my medical advice and stay in your bed or lose miracles which have been given to you.”
I looked at Wynne hard. This was as close as she had come to discussing the fact I was pregnant. She knew and why she wouldn’t say I still couldn’t fathom the why of it. She should have been beating Alistair’s door down to tell him he was to be a father and why she didn’t I couldn’t understand. I knew deep down she was more loyal to Alistair than to me. I’d done things along the way she hadn’t approved of. Me becoming friends with Morrigan, being one of them and allowing the use of blood magic at times. I was sure she didn’t hate me, or anything.
Wynne understood what being political savvy meant; she had the welfare of the mages as a collective whole she was trying to do her best for. I understood this; their lot in life was a horrible one. I didn’t envy the life of a mage, in or out of the Circle. I know her actions for joining us during the blight was to help show others that mages could be trusted to be let out of their cage and they could do good if given the chance. I’m sure this had always been her ulterior motive and being highly regarded by the new monarch wouldn’t hurt one bit. So her actions to me where shrouded in mystery. I just couldn’t put my finger on the why of her actions.
“You will stay in this bed, you will not get up unless you have my help, Leliana’s when she returns, or your brother’s.”
“You will drink the healing potions I’ll prepare and you will eat food I make for you, and you will not complain, you will keep your feet elevated and you will rest, do you understand or you will pay the consequences of your willfulness and this time it won’t be you that only pays the price until I get you stabilized again.”
“If you feel any rush of blood I need to know immediately, your system has had a tremendous shock and I’m researching now various potions to send with you to the Vigil to keep you strong for what you must face.”
She patted my hand again.
“Don’t forget, I’m a mother as well. I will do what I can for you and to the best of my ability. I know when the time is right and you’re sure of everything you will do the right thing. You always have and I have no reason to doubt you now. You will tell him one day when you think it safe to do so, for if you won’t then I will.”
“Yes,” I said.
“Wise decision Commander, now let me check you.”
Wynne didn’t know me as well as she thought she did. I had no intention of telling Alistair.