Anders opens his mouth, then closes it. After a moment he speaks, softly, warily. “That was a long time ago. I’m not that man any more. I really do have other things I need to tend to.“
"You want to trade to-do lists? Honestly, I don’t mind.”
Hawke paused, marking the change in Anders’s tone and the way that one muscle in his jaw tensed when he was being, well, himself. The trouble was convincing him that that was a perfectly acceptable state. “Well you know where we’ll be if you change your mind. If not, try to get some sleep,” she sighed, taking a few steps away before stopping to toss a few more words at him from over her shoulder. “Not face first on your desk.”
Day’s end. Finally.
Entering her chambers, Marian peeled off and tossed away each layer of her begrimed clothing, leaving a trail that led straight to the pillow-strewn bed where she toppled and collapsed. She rolled onto her shoulder (ow, mistake, try other shoulder) and sighed deeply. The bed was as comfortable as the room itself; filled with mementos precious to the Champion.
Out the open window Hightown was silent, save for the sound of water falling and dripping from the eaves. From the basket in the corner she could hear Rider’s breathing, slow and even. Familiar.
“I still don’t see what’s so dreadful about sleeping here,” she murmured waywardly, gazing at the mantelpiece until her eyes shut against it. Marian stretched out her arms, found a cushion, then dragged it toward her chest, listening to the sound of the rain as it drew further and further away.
“You’re both impossible, you know. Maybe I’ll come, but I’m making no promises.” He waits a beat and then adds, “And Isabela, no matter how many times you say that, I’m not drinking anything other than tea.“
”We’re both impossible, he says,“ Hawke snorted, blue eyes tipping up to silently ask the ceiling for patience. The sound of Isabela’s tongue clicking off the back of her labret stud signalled the pirate queen’s exit, leaving Hawke to contend with Anders. Or throw her arms up and leave too. She was still weighing out the pros and cons.
"If you’re half as much fun after a few pints as she claims you used to be, you can’t blame her for trying.