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Lost and Found in Dragon Age

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Chapter 1: Lothering

It was no surprise to anyone that Mattie was confused. He had woken up in a large open field, Vlad and Arthur beside him unconscious with no clue as to what had happened. He gripped his head as it began to pound and moved over to the two magic users, hoping they would have an idea as to where they were. He shook each of them awake while occasionally looking around for a sign or passerby, anything to tell him where they were really.

“Bloody hell…” The British man swore as he awoke, he too holding his head. “Where are we?” He asked once he realized that they were no longer where they were before they had passed out.

“I don’t know, It looks like a field of sorts.” The Canadian responded with a frown, he wished he had Kumajirou with him in this strange place, knowing the large bear had an odd way of calming him down when he was scared or nervous.

“Did we travel back in time?” Vlad asked as he awoke, looking slightly better than Arthur or Matthew were as sat there taking in their new surroundings. It certainly looked like they were in the past with the large medieval looking buildings everywhere.

“If we did then we will be standing out too much.” Mattie told them, his eyes focused on their modern looking clothing. It was actually a wonder that no one had approached them yet. He stood up slowly, his head still slightly pounding and further examined their location. “We should talk to someone…” He said, hoping to get an idea of what had happened to them.

“Maybe after we get new clothes, I kind of don’t want to get burned at the stake before I had a chance to explore the past.” Vlad told them, excitement showing in his red eyes.

“Careful, if this is the past we can’t do anything to meddle.” Arthur told them, not wishing to be the cause of a catastrophic event of some sorts.

Though he looked reluctant, Vlad had agreed as had Mattie, both wishing to avoid altering time if they had in fact time traveled.

Unlike how they were hoping to find clothes, no one had any drying on a clothesline. Their plan of stealing clothes seemed like it would never work out, and that appeared to be their only plan at the moment. Vlad saw many people distraught and worried, and had overheard people claiming to have gotten robbed while on the road, which gave Vlad an idea. He knew his companions were not going to like this, but if they wanted to blend in better and not draw unwanted attention it was the only way. He dragged Arthur and Mattie to where a young family had come from, all looking terrified and heartbroken, talking about the horrible bandits on the road and grinned to his companions. “Strip and follow my lead.” He told them, already discarding his modern clothing.

“W-what?!” Arthur stuttered in disbelief, his eyes large as he saw Vlad standing in nothing tossing his clothes in an old backpack they had found.

“Trust me.” He told them.

Mattie frowned but discarded his clothes, placing them in the bag as well, his cheeks red with embarrassment as he did so.

“I… Oh fine!” The Brit was the last to follow his companions but soon he too was standing in the nude. “For your sake you better have a plan.” He warned Vlad.

“I do! Now come on, oh, and look super sad.” Vlad told them, putting his best saddened face on. The other two followed him, their heads bent down in shame, all three covering their private areas.

“Those bandits stole everything! Even the clothes off our backs!” Vlad cried dramatically.

An elderly woman saw them and gestured for them to come over to where she was standing, tents were all around her and she seemed to be in charge of the place. “Here, it’s not much, but clothes are much harder to come by these days since more refugees such as yourselves came.” She told them handing them each some neatly folded clothing.

“Thank you ma’am.” Mattie smiled to her.

“Did something happen?” Arthur asked while the three of them put their clothing on.

“With the blight happening refugees from all over have come to seek aid. Unfortunately Lothering can only hold so many. We have run out of beds at this point and our food is scarce.” The woman told them.

Mattie looked down in thought. ‘Lothering? Why does that name sound so familiar?’ He wondered, feeling he had heard that name somewhere before.

“Thanks again for the clothes ma’am.” Arthur told her.

“Is there anything we can do to help?” Vlad asked with a frown, ignoring the glares from his friends. In his opinion they had already meddled in the timeline, aiding one elderly woman shouldn’t change things too much.

“Oh no it is alright. I suggest you seek refuge elsewhere however, Lothering can not take anyone else.” The woman told them with a small smile. “If you do wish to stay however, I believe the tavern still has a bed or two.”

‘“Is there anything we can do to help’ really Vlad? We can’t meddle in this time! Who knows what will happen to our time if we mess around here too much!” Arthur scolded.

“Wait, hang on, I swear that woman and this town seem familiar.” Mattie told them. “Let’s just go to the tavern, we’ll figure out a plan there.”

“You know this place? Did you have a rural town named Lothering in your country?” Vlad asked with curiosity.

“No, it’s not like that, I don’t know how to explain it, but everything here somehow feels familiar. Anyway, I think the tavern is this way, let’s go.” Mattie told them leading them to where he had thought he saw a tavern sign hanging.

As they entered the rather small building they saw some large armored men drinking and talking loudly about their king, “Loghain”. Many patrons and refugees were avoiding the men, some of them even were hiding from them. It was clear this king of theirs was one to be feared.

“Oh great, more refugees.” One man said in a gruff voice, his body clearly towering over all three of the newcomers. “Bets they don’t even know what our king did in Ostagar.”

“He Murdered King Cailin!” Mattie blurted out subconsciously before he let out a yelp and covered his mouth.

“King Loghain is a hero! Those damned Grey Wardens murdered him!” The man told them before he walked over to Mattie, drawing his sword in the process. “Those that speak ill of the king shall perish. The King’s rules!”

Before Mattie could react a young woman had gone over to where the quarrel was. “The Maker would not want to see you fight this person.” The girl told the angry soldier.

“I didn’t ask for you to involve yourself. But if you wish to join their fate then so be it!.” The man told him before he started to attack.

The woman glared and began to attack, countering attacks ever so often and swinging her sword at the armored man. Mattie stared in awe as the woman fought bravely against the man.

After a few minutes of them going toe to toe against each other the barkeep had gone over to them. “No more fighting in the tavern. This is a place for refugees to seek shelter, not for the kingsmen to attack!” The man told them, breaking the fight up before anyone got seriously hurt.

The soldier scoffed but walked out of the tavern, slamming the doors with all his might as he did so. Once the soldier was gone the woman walked over to Mattie, Vlad and Arthur. “I apologize for escalating things.” She said, her accent sounding almost french.

“Ah, don’t be, we know you were trying to help.” Mattie told her with a small smile.

“My name is Leliana, I am- I was a sister of the cloister. I… I had a vision from the maker himself, he sent me here, and I think it was to help you!” She said with almost excitement.

“Help us? How?” Arthur questioned, slightly wondering if they should talk to her to begin with.

“You are leaving Lothering soon, right? Please allow me to go with you!” She pleaded, seeming eager to join them, even if they had no idea on where to go from here.

“Have you by chance heard any odd rumors?” Vlad asked, wondering if there were more than just the three of them out here in this strange land.

“I heard tales that some Grey Wardens survived the battle of Ostagar. They say three of these wardens were seen in clothing that had never been seen before!” Leliana told them, confirming what Vlad was hoping for, that there were others like them somewhere.

“Well then! Let’s go find these wardens!” Vlad said with a grin.

“Oh, before we do that, I wish to help the Qunari caged up. The poor creature, has been without food and water for some time now.” Leliana told them, hoping the revered mother would agree to let the qunari out.

“The elder woman we spoke to before said they were running low on food, so wouldn’t getting him some be impossible?” Mattie asked with a frown, wondering how they were to feed him when the village had no food for its people.

“I was thinking we could talk to the Revered Mother in releasing him.” Leliana told them.

This caused the three to look from one and another in confusion wondering who or what the Revered Mother was.

“What’s a Revered Mother?” Vlad finally asked, the only one brave enough to boldly ask Leliana who or what she was referring to.

“The revered mother is the leader of the chantry, she looks over everything happening in Lothering.” Leliana explained.

“And she caged someone and refused to feed him?” Vlad asked with a frown.

“Yes, he… killed many people before, but he is a powerful warrior and, a man in need of help!” Leliana told them.

“Besides the obvious, why should we help him?” Vlad asked, questioning why they would release a known killer.

“He can be a good ally to have and it would be wrong to keep him caged up!” Leliana replied, sounding almost like she was scolding them.

“We’ll free him, we just need to talk to this Revered Mother right? Where would she be?” Mattie asked the young woman.

“In the Chantry, it is not too far from here either, once we leave the Tavern we just head east, some templars should be out there, they guard the chantry so be cautious.” She said, her eyes moving to Arthur and Vlad as if they would cause trouble somehow.

Arthur frowned, he couldn’t help but wonder what a templar was, he looked over at Mattie, figuring he was the one that seemed to know the most about this location than any of them. Sure enough the younger male looked concerned as she mentioned the templars. “We should be careful when we go there then.” The Canadian told them before he turned back to Leliana. “Is there a way we can ensure she helps us?”

“The Chantry could always use some funds? Perhaps if we gather some coin we can give it to the Revered Mother and she will be more inclined to listen to us and let us free the Qunari.” Leliana responded after a few moments of her thinking of a way to help. It sounded simple enough for the most part.

They all knew scrounging up coin would not be easy, but if it would help win points with the chantry leader and be able to free the caged Qunari, they were willing to gather what coin they could gain. Every odd deed they could think of they did, every chest in the area they opened until finally they had the money they needed, well and some for themselves.

As they grew closer to the Chantry they saw that Leliana was right, that Templars were everywhere around it. “I’ll take you to the Revered Mother now, if you so wish!” Leliana told them. They nodded, following the woman as they had no clue as to where to go. Inside they saw refugees of all ages kneeling and praying, small children crying and asking where their parents were, and women and men dressed similarly to Leliana walking around offering prayers. “This way.” Leliana whispered as they neared an older man giving a sermon.

In the back where Leliana had led them to was an older woman with gray braids pulled into a bun was seated in a chair. She smiled softly at the group as they neared. “Sister Leliana, who might our guests be?” She asked.

“Revered Mother, these men have come to consult with you. They come bringing a generous donation and hope for you to listen.” Leliana explained, bowing gently before the older woman. Her words caused the woman to arch a brow as the men walked forward, bowing like Leliana had.

“You’re… holy one. We come with 30 silver and hope you may here us out!” Vlad said awkwardly.

“30 silver? That is highly generous indeed. And to what means is this generosity for?” The woman asked standing up.

“We wish to have you release the Qunari caged in the fields into our care.” Mattie told her, adding a quiet “please” afterwards.

“He is highly dangerous and unpredictable. How do you plan on keeping him under control?” The Revered Mother asked.

“We… uh….” Arthur looked around for some clue as to what to say now.

“It will be perfectly fine to have him released into their care. I have seen them in action and know that should the qunari try anything they will be more than capable of putting an end to the qunari’s mischief. Added to that it seems wrong to keep a man caged up like an animal with no food or water and wait for him to die or be food for the darkspawn. The maker would be giving him a second chance.” Leliana smoothly told the revered mother.

“I did not know you felt so strongly of this sister Leliana. Though it is dangerous you are correct about the maker.” The revered mother said before she sighed, handing the key to the group. “I trust you Leliana, I just pray you know what you are doing.”

“Thank you.” Leliana told her with a smile and turned around to leave, her new companions following closely behind.

“So… just how dangerous is this qunari thing?” Vlad asked nervously.

“As I mentioned before, he had murdered countless people in the passed. But all deserves a second chance! And plus as I mentioned earlier he is without food or water in a small cage. I will not stand by while he suffers further. ” The young woman told them, clutching the key tightly as if they would take it from her.

“It would be wrong of us to leave him there like that, and plus we need all the help we can get.” Mattie told them.

“Thank you. His cage is across the bridge.” Leliana told them, getting a running start to where this qunari was.

Once she was gone however Arthur turned to Mattie. “Okay, what is going on here? You seemed like knew a thing or two about this place and you knew where all of those chests were.”

“And you said that this place felt familiar somehow.” Vlad added.

Mattie nodded. “There’s a game Al would play all the time. In it there was a town named Lothering. He spent a lot of time in this town making sure he had grabbed everything and done all he could. Now I could be wrong but I believe that this is that town.” He told them, his hands gesturing to the building and dirt that surrounded them.

“That’s ridiculous though, how could we be in a game? And why us?” Vlad asked quizzically.

“I don’t know, but based on what Leliana said there are others like us. Maybe Al is here too. We should try to find them and see if there is a way home.” Mattie told them, making a plan now. If this was their new reality then he could only hope that his brother and whoever else is here with was doing alright like they all were.

“Well for now let’s go back over to Leliana and see this man she wanted us to save.” Vlad stated, for once sounding like the only sensible one of them. The only thing they could do really was travel with Leliana and try to find their friends.

They walked over the small stone bridge Leliana had ran over and spotted her opening a metal cage with a large man inside.

“I am free.” The man stated, looking from the group of men to Leliana.

“We ask that you fight with us.” Mattie told the man.

“What do you fight for?” The man asked.

“What?” Vlad questioned.

“What do you fight for?” The man repeated.

“We fight for good.” Mattie answered with confidence

The man stared at all of them, his expression unchanging. “Very well, I will join you if it means I maybe able to repent for my deeds by fighting for good.”

“Really? Just like that?” Vlad asked, his gaze moving from the odd qunari to Leliana.

“Do you not wish for me to join you?” the man questioned Vlad.

“No no, I was just curious! By the way, what do we call you?” Vlad asked the man, his red eyes focused on the much larger male.

“I am known as Sten.”

The strawberry blond nodded slowly. “Well I’m Vlad, these are my friends, Arthur and Mattie.” He introduced, gesturing from Arthur to Mattie and earning a grunt in reply from Sten. “Great, we’ll get along wonderfully…”

With everything handled in Lothering the team felt it was time to move on and head to where Leliana heard an odd group of Grey Wardens was located.

Chapter Text

Chapter 2: Korcari Wilds

Never in his life had Gilbert ever felt this confused and dazed than at this moment. He had awoken in front of a small hut with an elderly woman leaning over him studying him. Beside him was the unconscious form of Lovino and a confused but awake Mathias.

Before Gilbert could ask anything a young woman had exited the hut. “Mother, the man is awake, I still don’t see why we needed to save-” She paused as she saw Gilbert. “Oh and now there’s more of them! Great!” the woman complained.

“Watch your tongue girl, these wardens are our guests.” The elderly woman scolded.

‘Warden? And wait, where are we?’ Gilbert thought, his eyes moving from Mathias to Lovino over and over. “What happened? And Where are we?” He asked, not caring if he sounded rude or not.

“You’re in our home. And mind your manners, mother saved your lives after all!” The young woman stated, glaring at the albino male.

“Sorry for sounding rude, we just don’t know how we got here.” Mathias jumped in.

The elderly woman laughed. “It was quite a site, you three just suddenly appeared while unconcious on my doorstep!”

“And you think we’re… wardens?” Gilbert asked in disbelief. He wasn’t even sure what a warden was, much less how magically appearing on someone’s doorstep made them one.

The woman grinned knowingly. “I know you are destined for greatness, and also considering the Wardens only have one person left, they need help.”

“And three complete strangers, one of which is still unconscious, is supposed to help this person?” Gilbert questioned, an eye brow rising as he focused on the woman.

“As a matter of fact, you are.” The old woman responded with a grin. “How is our other guest doing?” She then asked, her attention on the young and slightly cranky woman.

“Still asleep.” The woman responded crossing her arms over her chest.

“Do let me know when he wakes.” The woman told the girl.

“What?! Mother it would be best if we just tossed all of these wardens in some pit somewhere and left them!”

“Now Morrigan,” The old woman sternly replied, her tone saying not to utter another word. The younger woman who Gilbert now knew was named Morrigan, glared but kept quiet, showing an almost fear for the older woman.

After being scolded for the second time Morrigan had turned back inside, staying in the hut. The old woman sighed at Morrigan’s actions but said nothing about it. She seemed to be focused on Lovino, worried there was something wrong with him as he had yet to awaken.

“So who’s the angry chick?” Mathias asked after a few moments of silence.

“Angry…” The woman let out a loud laugh once she realized who he was referring to. “If by angry, you are referring to my daughter. Yes, my Morrigan can have quite the mouth on her.” The woman responded, her eyes moving briefly over to the entrance of the hut.

“Sounds like some of the people we know.” Mathias muttered under his breath. He opened his mouth to speak more but shut it as a string of curses escaped the Italian’s mouth as he awoke.

“Shit… did my stupid brother drug me and leave me in the woods?” The Italian swore, gripping his head as he sat up, looking around with a frown.

“I didn’t know Feli did that so often, that you instantly assumed.” Gilbert stated causing Lovino to turn and glare at him as if he was to blame.

“Where are we and who’s the old woman?” Lovino asked, an accusing finger moving from Gilbert to the old woman.

“I am called Flemeth, sometimes referred to as the Witch of Wilds, or occasionally, an old hag who talks too much. And you my energetic boy are standing in front of my house.” The old woman introduced.

“Oh, an insane old hag that thinks she’s a witch. Where in the world is your house?” Lovino asked, ignoring his headache as he stood up.

“I might be able to answer that. If this is the same hut as last time then we’re in the Korcari Wilds.” A man explained as he walked out of the hut. He appeared to be nearly Mathias’ height and looked to be his age as well with heavy armor covering his likely built body.

“I see you are awake, and where is Morrigan?” Flemeth asked quizzically.

“She kicked me out as soon as I was up and said something about making stew. She’s as friendly as the last time I saw her too.” The man said rubbing the back of his neck. “Oh! Are you the wardens that Morrigan mentioned? I don’t remember you….”

“We’re the new recruits… recruited by Flemeth just now…” Mathias responded, pointed to Flemeth who simply shrugged.

“Oh I see! Well, hello! I am Alistair!” The man introduced with a smile.

“Hey! I'm Mathias! This is Gilbert and over there is Lovino!” Mathias introduced.

“So… what are wardens exactly?” Gilbert asked, his curiosity for what he and his friends were unwillingly signed up for only increasing each time he heard the word.

“We’re the only ones that can stop this blight and defeat the darkspawn!” Alistair explained. “There used to be a lot of us… but Loghain and the darkspawn attack in Ostagar…”

“Uh huh… and we who by the way you don’t even know are supposed to join you and stop whatever the hell a darkspawn is?” Lovino asked in disbelief.

“Well, you certainly don’t have to. It’s just that without more wardens all of Ferelden may be lost.” Alistair responded.

“Okay, and how are 4 people supposed to stop this?” Lovino questioned with a frown, clearly disliking all of this.

“Five actually, I ask that you take my Morrigan with you.” Flemeth told them right as Morrigan stepped out of the hut.

“Mother, dinner is just about- wait… what? You want me to go with them?” She asked, glaring at Flemeth.

“Yes. You always talked about traveling. What better way than to travel with wardens?” The old woman stated with a knowing grin.

“I… fine. I won’t like it however.” Morrigan grumbled before she turned to the large group of men. “Well, you heard mother, from here on out I’ll be traveling with you.”

“And if we don’t want the pissy bella with us?” Lovino asked Flemeth, not even looking at Morrigan.

“Well you don’t really have a choice. My Morrigan is a highly skilled mage, something you will be needing on your journey. Plus I saved all of you. So if you wish to repay me for your lives, then you will be traveling with my daughter.”

“A mage? Well… She and my sister would get along, so welcome aboard… I think.” Mathias said to Morrigan, though he sounded unsure of it.

“I’ll go pack my things while all of you come up with a plan.” She told the group of men as she once again vanished into the house.

While she was gone Gilbert decided to talk to Flemeth more. “So, besides the three of us, you wouldn’t happen to know of any more people that just suddenly appeared here would you?” He asked hoping that there were more of his friends out there.

“I barely know what goes on in these woods much less out of them. But if there were someone new in town Redcliffe or Lothering would likely be where they’d end up.” She answered, acting as if she had no idea what was going on.

“Wait, Redcliffe? Are we by chance heading there? I wish to talk to the Arl. He’d know what to do and could possibly help us with a plan. Though, gaining allies is also an important step… And those documents I got earlier were to gain the Dwarves, Elves, and Mages aid… so we should also go see them at some point as well.” Alistair told them, though the expression on his face said that Redcliffe was going to be the first place they went to.

“Well, I guess I’m all ready.” Morrigan said as she exited her home. Before she walked over to the group she moved over to the old woman. “Mother, there is stew on the fire, please remember to take it off soon. I don’t want to come home to a burned down house.”

“If this blight spreads further a fire will be the least of your worries.” Flemeth replied.

“No I…”

“I get it girl. I will try to be safe here. Go save the world and travel. Make some new friends while you're at it!” The old woman said to Morrigan with a gentle smile. She seemed happy to have Morrigan out and with others her own age.

“Shall we be off?” Alistair asked, He didn’t want to interrupt but they needed to leave sooner rather than later.

“Yes, let’s go.” Morrigan replied, looking back at Flemeth one last time before she lead the way out of the clearing. Though Gilbert and his friends disliked the idea of wandering with these people that thought elves and dwarves were real, it beat staying and potentially being slaughtered. They followed Alistair and Morrigan, hoping to find someone they knew in Redcliffe.

Chapter Text

Chapter 3: Mage’s Circle

The air was cooler than what Alfred had remembered before. And unlike before, he was now outside, lying face down in dirt, feeling as if someone had tossed him as hard as possible across the world. Beside him sitting in a small patch of dried grass was a young girl with long blond hair and a blue little dress on. She stared at him with her deep violet eyes which caused the American to stare back. “Lu-cia? Right? Mathias’ younger sister?” Alfred asked. He knew her from the small encounters he had with his friend’s family, though he never had a chance to talk to her before. She nodded and stood up, brushing dirt and grass off of herself.

“Do you have any idea where we are?” She asked him with a frown.

Alfred shook his head and stood up as well, not caring that his clothes were dirty. She rolled her eyes and started to walk away, feeling he was going to be no help in getting home. “Wait! We should work together. We might be the only one’s here and we don’t even know where here is!” He told her grabbing a hold of her small delicate hand.

She turned, trying to pull her hand away, though it was clear she had no strength to do so. She was a lot shorter than Alfred and seemed so light, Alfred was sure even Arthur could carry her if he had to. He loosened his grip slightly out of fear that he’d break her small hand with his grip. “Why should we? We barely know each other and we don’t even know each other.” She told him.

“Well we might need to know each other! We’re trapped in who knows where. Look, let’s just find someone to talk to and see if we can find out where we are.” Alfred reasoned, hoping the girl would agree. The girl remained silent but stopped fighting him, looking like she had given in to his plea to find people and hopefully a way home.

They walked around for a while, hoping to find someone to talk to, or even a sign to read. Had they really ended up in the middle of nowhere? It seemed to be that way, but before they could come up with a new plan two fully armored men came into view. They were staring at Alfred and Lucia while standing still, but despite their appearance, They appeared to be the only people in the area.

Alfred chose to be the first to walk over with Lucia right beside him, hoping the men were simply dressed up for some convention or something. “‘Sup dudes! Hey, do you know where we are? Me an’ Lucy here are kind of lost.” He told them with a large grin.

The men looked at each other, clearly confused, even with their helmets on one could see that they had no idea what Alfred was talking about.

“What he means is, can you tell us where we are? We honestly are lost and we can’t even find a sign anywhere.” Lucia explained, clarifying what Alfred was trying to say.

“You are in The Lake Calenhad Docks, miss. We templars have been assigned to this location in case there are any apostates in the area.” One of the men explained.

“Holy crap! You’re in to the fandom too! I should have seen it sooner! Nice costumes by the way!” Alfred cheered, looking as if he just met some lifelong hero of his.

Seeing the tense postures the men had changed to, made Lucia think that somehow Alfred had said something wrong. “So, what are these apostates like?” She asked them, deciding it was best she talk for now on in fear that Alfred would anger them somehow.

“They are rogue mages that have yet to join the circle of magi. They are highly dangerous and most tend to be Maleficarum.” One of the men answered.

Lucia blinked in confusion, barely understanding any of that. “...Why are they dangerous?” She asked, realizing that was all she understood.

“Apostates are at greater risk of becoming abominations. In order to protect both the mage and the citizens of Thedas, us templars are tasked with finding mages and bringing them in to the circle.”

“Uh.. huh…” The blond nodded slowly. “Well thank you for all of the information and good luck with… all of that but we really need to be going.”

“Huh? We do? But this is so cool! These costumes are legit! And look! You can actually see the tower! Can’t we stay?” Alfred asked, nearly begging the blond.

“You can stay. I’m going to find a way home.” Lucia retorted and began to walk away from this odd scene.

“Wait! Don’t leave yet! We can still find a way home!” Alfred pleaded with her. “Like… can’t you poof us home? Like don’t you have magic like Artie does?”

“I suck at that kind of magic though.” She told him with a frown. “Trust me, I try the same spells Arthur and Vlad do and somehow I can’t do it.”

“You can do magic?” One of the armored men asked loudly, making the pair remember that they were still around.

“Sort of? Why? If it’s to help with your… whatever it is you guys are doing. Sorry but I’m not interested.” Lucia told them, she too thinking that they were harmless cosplayers.

“Then you must come with us, mage.” One of the men told her, unsheathing his sword.

The men’s fighting stance caused the girl to blink. ‘Are they that into this game or whatever they are willing to attack?’ She thought. “Look, I’d love to come with you to have sword fights and do whatever it is you guys do all day, but no means no.” She told them, rolling her eyes afterwards.

Alfred watched, amazed at how dedicated these men were and stood back, thinking they would fake hit them and go away. As one of the men’s blades swung down and hit Lucia, tearing her sleeve and causing a cut to form, he started questioning things.

“Ow! What the hell! Is that a real sword?!” She asked while holding her injured arm.

They swung again and were aiming on attacked Lucia again. This time Alfred stood in front of her, shielding her from the next set of blows. “Ah shit, I’m starting to think their not playing…” Alfred muttered, wincing in pain. His jacket and shirt were torn and bloody in the chest area from the armored men’s attacks.

“You think? Let’s just get out of here!” Lucia fearfully told Alfred, pulling on his arm to try and pull him away.

“Halt! You are not going anywhere! Now release the mage!” One of the templars told them, his sword aimed up toward Alfred’s neck.

“Yeah not going to happen.” Alfred told them. He closed his eyes, awaiting the coming blow from the blade and felt the hands gripping his arm release. Thinking the girl had run off Alfred was ready to accept his fate.

“Wait!” Alfred re-opened his eyes and saw Lucia standing in front of him, stopping the sword. “Look, clearly you guys are crazy, but if I go with you, will you promise not to kill Al?”

It was crazy! She was basically giving up her life for his. The men nodded and resheathed their swords, leading her toward the docks where a ferry sat. “We apologize for hurting you before, but we are pleased to see that you have finally cooperated with us.” One of the templars told her as they sat on either side of her on the small ferry, as if she was going to run off now.

Alfred could only watch, angry at himself for not stopping her somehow. He couldn’t just let her go to the circle alone, he needed to save her! He looked around, seeing a small rundown inn, near the water’s edge. It was the only location near where he was and there would likely be something he could use to save Lucia with.

As he walked in, he realized just how run down the place was. There were no patrons and those that were there seemed to be almost shady. He walked further inside, disliking how everyone was looking at him and made his way to the owner of the inn. “Hey, so do you know if the templars are looking for new people to join?” He asked as soon as he got up to the man working the inn.

“You want to be a templar?” The man asked, sounding like he was almost accusing Alfred.

‘No I really don’t, but if it means getting Lucy out of the circle, then I’ll join with them.’ Alfred thought. “I mean, their pretty cool, ya know?” He answered, trying to sound casual.

“I wouldn’t know how to help you. You would probably have to talk to the templars yourself if you want to join their ranks, not sure why though…” The man told him.

Alfred shrugged and thanked the man before he left the inn, looking around for a templar to talk to. “Damn it. Now that I need those dudes they’re gone…” He swore and began to pace around, hoping for a templar to appear.

Alfred sat down in front of the dock thinking his options over. He could try to sneak into the Circle and hope he can sneak out afterwards with Lucia, or he could act as if he were a Templar and sneak her out that way. Both ways seemed close to impossible for the American male. He was almost certain that this was a real thing and those men were in fact Templars. But that would mean that either he and Lucia got transferred into a game, or the Templars and Circle got transferred into his world. No matter which had happened, both were not good. He let out a defeated sigh looking down into the dark water. He could try to swim across, but that was a long journey and even if he did make it across, there was still how he would be able to get inside.

He began to feel getting Lucia back was a lost cause when a sudden spout of water hit him. He looked around for what had splashed him and saw that the ferry had returned. “Dudes! Hey! Look sorry for before, I thought you guys were someone I knew, but anyway, I want to become a templar!” He told the two Templars from before.

“You want to be a templar?” One of them asked in disbelief.

“Why does everyone say that? Yes, I do. I want to wear your weird skirt thing and bulky armor and I want to bring in mages.” Alfred told them, not caring how desperate he sounded. He needed them to say yes so he could gain access to the circle.

The men looked at each other as if they were deciding something before they looked back at Alfred. “Very well, get on and we’ll take you to see our knight captain. He’ll give you more information and if you make a good impression with him he might even give you the armor. No promises though.” Alfred wanted to cheer, glad they would finally take him to the circle tower.

“Thank you!” He couldn’t help but thank them as he raced onto the ferry.

“Don’t thank us yet, you don’t even know if you will be welcomed to join our ranks.” The templars responded.

While Alfred got ready to talk to the Knight Captain, Lucia was being guided to the First Enchanter, a man who seemed to be in charge of the mages in this place. He was tall, close to Alfred’s height in fact, and sported a large gray beard. Upon seeing Lucia he arched a brow at her appearance before he smiled at her. “Welcome child. I am first enchanter Irving.” He introduced.

“Do… most welcomes involve getting attacked and dragged into a creepy room? No offense, but you should change your policies a bit.” Lucia stated.

“If you are referring to the Templars, they mean you no harm. They are simply trying to do what they feel is best.” Irving told her.

“Ah, okay. Attacking people is for the best, got it. Anyway, where’s the sign out area? Because I am not going to be staying here.” The girl asked, looking around.

“You can not leave. Until we understand your magic a bit more, and can safely say that you will not give in to possession, you are to remain here.” Irving told her, his voice a lot sterner than it had a few minutes ago.

“Well my magic is simple. I can only heal people. And before you get on the whole “But mages are evil and no one can only have healing magic” thing, trust me, I tried various spells before and all have failed.” The girl huffed. “Wait… are possessions that common here?”

Irving nodded. “Demons are tricky beasts, many mages fall victim to their lies and end up giving their souls up. Those that end up being possessed morph, becoming abominations.”

Lucia scoffed. “Look, mages from where ever the hell we are might be weaker and give their bodies away to demons, but I know better than to give into their lies, plus technically speaking, it’s considered kidnapping to have me stay here against my will.” She told the man, crossing her arms over her chest in an almost defiant manner.

“Did you not come here willingly?” The man countered, a thick grey eyebrow arching up.

“I… well…” Lucia stuttered, her cheeks darkening in tint. “O-only because Those armored guys out there were going to kill someone I knew otherwise.”

“You still voluntarily came here, so therefore it is not kidnapping or holding you against your will.” He told her. He stepped away from the large oak desk he was at and headed to the door. “You have nothing to fear here. We only wish to help you. My colleague, Wynne will take you to where you will be resting and will give you your robes.” The man said, gesturing out of the room to an elderly woman who was passing by.

‘...Is everyone in this place giant?’ Lucia wondered to herself as the woman entered the room.

“Yes Irving?” The woman asked, not even paying Lucia any attention.

“Please take our young friend to get situated here.” He asked the woman. The woman nodded and turned to look at Lucia.

“Come dear, there’s a bed calling your name and robes just waiting for you to put on.”

Before Lucia or the woman could leave however, Irving had stopped them, looking as if he had just remembered something. “Please give me your hand child.” The man said. Lucia frowned but slowly lifted her hand up for the man. Irving thanked her and took a small dagger out, slicing her hand with it.

“What the hell?!” She questioned, trying to pull her hand away from him. He held on to her hand tighter and dripped some of her blood into a glass vial.

“I am getting old, Wynne. This hasn’t been the first time I nearly forgot the Phylactery.” Irving stated, closing the vial up once he had enough blood from her.

“Uh… Is this the part where I say “Yay! I’m in a cult!” And dance naked in the moonlight while smearing blood on myself?” Lucia asked staring quizzically at the two older people while she gripped her hand to stop the bleeding.

The older woman, Wynne laughed. “No no, there’s nothing like that here.” She told Lucia before she turned to Irving. “If you have everything handled, I’ll take her to the dorms.”

The man nodded, allowing Lucia to leave his office. Once she and the Wynne were in the hallway, Lucia turned to her. “Okay, what the hell was that?! He just took blood from me. How is this not a cult?! I mean you all are in matching robes!” To say Lucia wasn’t freaking out was an understatement.

“Relax, nothing here will hurt you and you will be with other girls your age here.” The woman told her as she began the tour through the tower.

“Nothing to worry about… sure.” The young blond muttered but reluctantly followed along.

As they climbed down the stairs Wynne stopped and looked to Lucia. “If you would like I can heal your injuries for you, most new mages ask me to heal them after their blood was taken for their Phylactery.”

“Oh that’s cool, but as I said like three times today, I already know how to heal myself. So thanks for the offer, but I don’t need it.” Lucia told her. Though she might have sounded rude, she didn’t want to get attached to anyone here, especially those that would likely stop her from any escape attempts she might try.

“You’re a spirit healer? And so young too. My you must be blessed.” The woman said in amazement.

“Uh… if you mean curse because I can literally only heal, then sure yeah, I’m blessed.”

“Being a Spirit Healer is a gift, one that is more helpful than you might think. If you so wish I can give you some training so you know all you can in order to protect those you love.” Wynne offered with a smile, the two of them continuing their walk through the tower and to the dorms Lucia would be in for now on.

Lucia thought long and hard about that, she could decline and ignore everyone and everything, or she could try and learn all she could about her magic and see if she can’t actually be helpful for now on. She honestly liked the idea of being able to help others and not get in the way. “Alright, that’d be cool to learn about my magic.” She told Wynne.

The elderly woman smiled softly at her before they stopped, a large room filled with beds and books there to greet them. Various female mages of all ages were there to greet her one of which had begun to dig around in a wooden chest for a while before pulling a drab dark blue robe out. “...I have to wear that?” The blond girl asked, a look of distaste clear on her expression.

“It beats a torn night dress.” Wynne whispered in her ear.

‘Nightdress?! Rude.’ Lucia internally grumbled but grabbed the robe that was offered to her, discarding her torn dress for the robes, glaring at how they fit on her. She looked like she was a little kid wearing mom’s clothes… or like that one time she wore her older brother’s coat because it was raining and she had forgotten her own jacket and she was swimming in the thick cloth. “So… this is prison, fun times are ahead I bet…”

Chapter Text

Chapter 4: Mage’s Circle- Continued

Alfred walked through the stone corridors, adjusting his new armor, he hated how stiff it felt in it, but he was willing to suffer through it to find his friend and get her out of this place. In all honesty he had no idea where Lucia was or even how to find her, he just knew that he needed to hurry.

Since he got accepted into the Templar Order by the Knight Captain, Alfred had been in a constant state of worry. One of the older members that was there with him here, Cullen, had constantly tried to reassure him, saying all new recruits felt nervous at first. However genuine Cullen’s words seemed though, they didn’t help calm Alfred.

One day he decided to ask Cullen about Lucia, hoping the man would know something about her whereabouts. “So, have you met any of the girls here?” He asked, trying to be casual about it.

Cullen’s calm demeanor vanished as soon as Alfred had mentioned girls and his face turned to a dark red. “I… what? N-no. I haven’t noticed any… g-girls.”

Alfred arched a brow, wondering how girls seemed to fall for him if he couldn’t even talk about them without looking like he was slowly dying. “Uh… huh….Are you okay dude?” He asked wondering if he was cursed… or constipated.

“I… yes, I’m… fine…” Cullen responded, trying hard to recover from his obvious awkwardness.

“Whatever you say dude. Anyway, if you see a girl that’s like elf height with long blond hair and an extremely sassy personality let me know.” He told Cullen, hoping the man will actually be able to manage this task without dying of weird embarrassment.

He knew he wouldn’t be able to get her out of here right away, but he hoped to at least be able to see her so he knew she was alright.

While Alfred trained and grew accustomed to being a templar, Lucia had trained to use her magic. It was difficult, but Wynne proved to be a patient teacher. Today she left the dorm early, for once eager to learn magic. Really it was starting to be fun for her.

As she walked down the halls she spotted a rather tall templar, one that had no helmet on, showing his curly blond hair. As she walked passed him, she came to the sudden conclusion that everyone here was amazon height.

“Ah… M-miss, I… uh… you… um…” The Templar stuttered, looking as if he were trying to stop her, but was failing miserably.

“Should… I grab Wynne so she can heal you?” She asked stopping her stride to stare at the templar.

“No! I mean… it’s alright, I was… supposed to be… elsewhere anyway.” The man said, quickly leaving before she could talk any further.

“Okay… So they’re giants, and they’re crazy…” She muttered to herself as she headed back to where Wynne usually taught her.

In her opinion Wynne was the only reason she hasn’t escaped yet. She thought of it before, thinking of various ways to leave the tower, but the gray haired woman had helped her not see the place as a complete prison.

She entered the room Wynne was in and sat down, waiting for Wynne to enter. It was odd being the first one here, but it proved that she was really getting in to her studies. She sat waiting for a few moments, growing concerned the longer time passed and Wynne still had yet to show up. She got up from her seat and looked out the room, jumping as she heard a loud scream. She headed out of the room to try and find the source and felt arms force her to the side, pushing her to the side roughly as hoards of templars ran past. Once Lucia had recovered from the shock of being pushed around she followed after the templars, looking to see what the commotion was about.

It was as if in slow motion that Lucia saw everything. Limbs shot around, blood and guts covered the stone walls. It took all of her willpower to not be sick. She backed away as some of the templars began to run away, but many were unlucky. Demons had lunged at them, dragging them out of view, their screams surrounding the girl. She stood in shock, unsure as to what had happened and felt a hand touch her shoulder, shaking it slightly.

She turned slowly and saw the templar that had talked to her before. He looked serious, his eyes gazing over her head at the scene she had just witnessed. “By the Maker…” He gasped. “What happened?” He asked the girl covered in his companion’s blood.

“A… d-demon. It came out of nowhere and attacked.” She explained, looking like she was in daze.

He looked as if he didn’t believe her at first but before he could discuss things further a demon had appeared, the same one that had dragged the other templar before. He drew his sword as if it was a barrier to stop the demon from coming after them, he stood in front of Lucia in a way to defend her. “Come on.” He told her once he realized it was best to simply run away than try to fight. The pair ran, trying to keep a large enough gap between them and the demon the templar sheathing his sword in an attempt to run faster.

They made it to an abandoned room, both panting from their run. “Stay here and bar off the door, I’ll be back with help.” The man commanded, no longer that awkward guy she had seen him as before. Lucia supposed that was due to the severity of the situation.

“Wait! Why don’t we just leave?” She asked with a frown. She figured in a time of crisis they’d be able to abandon the tower.

The man pierced his lips together as if the crossed his mind. “We can’t just abandon the tower. Remain here and keep the door closed. Unless you hear my voice don’t move from your hiding spot.” He told her and left the door. She hated this plan, but at this it might be safer to wait for him to return with others. She closed the door and used one of the barrier spells Wynne had taught her, hoping that’d keep her safe for a while. Now that she sat hugging her legs to her chest, blood drying in her hair and on her skin, she was glad Wynne had taught her this spell first. She hoped the woman was alright, though she did not want to leave the room to find.

Alfred felt his heart pounding in his chest as he saw mages and templars alike dying, Blood Mages running ramment along with demons. It was a massacre in the tower and somewhere was his friend. He moved through the terrified people, needing to know that she and Cullen were alright. “Private! Help me!” One of the Templars called to him. Alfred frowned but ran over to the man that had called for him. “Two of our men are trapped in this room! We saw a few demons and blood demons in there earlier. Help us clear out the room!”

The young blond peered inside the room and gulped, seeing large demons and blood mages running around. “And we’re supposed to go inside there and kill everything?” He asked the templar while pointing in the room. It wasn’t that he didn’t want to help, it was that he didn’t want to die at the hands of a demon just yet.

“Yes, now come on!” The man said charging inside the room.

‘Holy crap he’s going to get himself killed!’ Alfred thought before he groaned and took out his sword, charging in after the man. “Yo! Are all the dudes I work with still alive?” He called out while dodging fireballs and close range attacks.

He heard a cough and a groan, signalling that someone in this room was okay. He looked to the side of the room and saw saw a signal templar resting against the wall, a leg missing and his sword lying in his unmoving hand. “P-private….” The man weakly called out.

Alfred raced over, unsure if he could even help. This appeared to be the only one left alive in the room, and even then he was just barely. “D-dude. You’ll be okay… Come on, let’s try to find one of the mages to help….” Alfred whispered as he got over to the man, kneeling by him.

“It’s… too late for… me…. But if… you get out of here…. Please tell my wife that I’m… sorry.” The man rasped out, his hand reaching up to pushing against Alfred’s chestplate. As his hand fell limply to the floor, a clank could be heard. Alfred gently moved his hand and looked at a silver locket the man held. Inside was a small picture of a woman smiling with him, with their names engraved into it.

Alfred stared at the man’s locket, his eyes beginning to tear up as he realized that he had run in too late. He blamed himself for this man’s death. He stayed kneeled for a few moments, leaving a silent prayer for the man before he pocketed the locket and stood up, promising to find this man’s wife when he and Lucia were safe. He knew staying any longer would be pointless and that he would need to get out of there soon if he wished to even think of completing his promise. He clutched his sword tightly in one hand, pocketing the locket with the other as he stood up, hurrying out of the room to try and find someone he knew.

He ran down the long hallway, his eyes moving left and right, all around him there was death and carnage and it seemed the demons would succeed in taking over the tower. He picked up his speed as he heard screaming, his mind going straight to it being someone he knew. As he turned a corner he saw two young mages huddled in a corner, an abomination hovering over them, looking ready to attack the cornered mages.

“Hey! Leave them alone!” Alfred called, holding his sword in a battle ready position.

The abomination turned, looking Alfred over before it lunged at him. Alfred dodged right as the thing was going to attack and slashed at it with his blad, glad Gilbert had given him some sword training all those years before. The thing let out an unearthly scream and tried to attack again, but to no avail, Alfred had managed to counterstrike and defeat it.

Once it was dealt with he turned to the two scared mages. “Go! Get to somewhere safe!” He ordered. The pair nodded and ran off, not once looking back.

Alfred sighed and tried to think of where Cullen or Lucia would be in this tower and moved up the stairs, deeming the second and third floors to be the best place to look for them. He could only pray that they were both still alive.

Stopping at the landing on the second floor, Alfred caught gaze of yet another battle, this one being with Cullen and some mages versus higher powered demons. He ran forward and got ready to help out, not wanting to see anyone else die before his eyes.

“Alfred! The girl you asked about is in a room on this floor.” Cullen called out while he dodged and slashed at one of the demons.

“Lucy? She’s okay? Which room?” Alfred asked quickly, looking ready to desert the fight to fight the girl.

Cullen winced as one of the demon’s attacks grazed his arm and went back to dodging and slicing at the demon he was fighting. “I’ll tell you once this room has been cleared.” The man stated, as if reminding Alfred of his duties. The American frowned but got into the fight, trusting his friend was safe for the time being.

As the last demon was cleared out, the templars panted, looking relieved to be done with the fight. As I was say-” Before Cullen could finish however, the mages that had aided them in the fight let out a scream, both flying across the room and hitting the wall hard enough to crack it. The culprits of the sudden attack walked deeper inside, smirking at the two templars, all three of them appearing to be mages, but looking darker and creepier than the ones Alfred had seen before with blood covering their hands and clothes.

“Look boys, more templars to play with.” The leader said evilly.

“Maker preserve us…” Cullen prayed, nearly hiding behind his shield. “She’s down the first hall and in the last room there.” He said, looking as if he were now fearing for his and Alfred’s life.

“Come with us!” Alfred pleaded, knowing Blood mages were not to be messed with.

“I’ll buy you some time, get the girl and leave the tower.” Cullen told him, willing to sacrifice himself if it meant two lives were saved.

“Oh! A noble templar!” The head blood mage grinned, as if this entire scene amused him.

Alfred looked at the door and then back at Cullen, gazing back and forth before he swore and left the room, heading down the hallway Cullen had told him to go down.

Even this hallway looked as if a battle had gone on in it. He stood in front of the stone door Cullen had said Lucia was behind and tried to open it, frowning as he noticed it was jammed shut. “Lucy? Luce! It’s Al! Open the door!” He called inside, trying to make his voice loud as possible for the girl inside to hear.

Lucia stared at it with fear, hearing screams all around. She tried to cover her ears with her hands, hoping to block out the noise while she waited for the templar to return. She could feel her energy slowly wane the longer she waited and prayed the man would return. “Lucy? Luce! It’s Al! Open the door!”

She looked up, slowly removing her hands from her ears. That sounded like Alfred, but… she hadn’t seen him since she was sent here. She felt this could be a trap, but if this was in fact Alfred then she needed to see for sure. She undid the barrier spell she had up and slowly opened the door, relief swelling over her as she saw that it was in fact Alfred.

“Al!” She cried out. She stepped out of the room to hug him. It seemed to be slow motion as an abominations came out from the room next to her and raced over to where the pair stood. Too tired at this point to even try to warn Alfred, she simply chose to gather what strength she had left to push him out of the way of a coming blow. Sharp piercing pain hit her as the beast attacked, stabbing her with its claws in the chest. The last thing she could hear was the strangled cries escaping from Alfred.

Chapter Text

Chapter 5: Redcliffe

Antonio had never felt so lost in his entire life. The last he remembered was being at Alfred’s house for a party. He looked around in confusion, walking slowly down a steep dirt path. “Oh thank the maker another Warden, did you get seperated from the others? Whatever, doesn’t matter, the other Wardens just got here as well.” A man said to Antonio as he grew closer. The spanish man arched a brow, feeling even more lost and confused than he had before.

“Wait what?” He questioned.

“There’s no time to talk! Night is coming and you wardens need to get ready too!” The man said stubbornly.

Antonio frowned but followed the man as he ran across a small stone bridge. As they ran a small town came clear into view, it looked as if a war had happen in the town. It seemed empty, the homes looked worn and battered, barricades were set up in every corner of the town, and armored men stood training in the center of town.

As he entered the church, following close behind the man, he heard loud chatter. Many men, women and children were huddled close and praying, and it looked like this church was their stronghold. Antonio walked further inside and gaped as he saw his friends talking amongst themselves in a corner of the building.

“Gilbert! Mathias!” He called out, racing over to them, now feeling a sense of relief in knowing that he was not the only one here in this place. Beside the two men was a tall well-armored man with a sword and shield, and a barely clothed woman with a staff.

“Holy shit! Toni! You’re here as well?” Gilbert asked, looking as happy as Antonio felt. The spanish man nodded, grinning from ear to ear.

“Oh? Another companion? Well hi, I’m Alistair. The moody one with us is Morrigan, pay her insults no mind, it’s simply of her way of showing affection.” The well-armored man introduced, holding his hand out for Antonio to take.

Antonio politely took his hand, shaking it before he turned to Gilbert. “Is any of our other amigos here with us?” He asked.

“Oh yeah! Lovino’s here with us! He told us while he was flipping us off that he was going to get a drink or two before the battle.” Mathias explained, pointing with his thumb to the door.

Antonio turned to the door and saw the doors open wide, blinking as five people entered. One was a large man with heavy armor on, a large broadsword strapped to his back and a helmet planted firmly on his head. Another was a small red haired woman in leather armor wielding a bow and arrow. Another one in the group was a man with wavy blond hair and glasses, leather armor was also worn on him and like the woman he had a bow and arrow. The other two males were dressed alike in mage robes.

“Huh, those guys are here too.” Gilbert commented as the group grew closer to where everyone was.

“Is that it on everyone?” The blond mage asked, his thick eyebrow raising. The large group shrugged in response, no one knowing the answer to that question.

“I’m kind of impressed we all came here together. It’s like a giant “Warden’s come help” signal went off and now everyone is here.” Alistair stated.

“What is happening here anyway?” Antonio asked, realizing he never figured out what was going on in the town.

“Darkspawn are attacking Redcliffe at night and at this point the town won’t last. Right now we’re figuring out how to defend the town best and how to limit casualties.” Alistair responded.

“Still don’t know why we need to help, but whatever.” Morrigan huffed, her arms crossed over her chest.

“We’ve been over this Morrigan. We are here to help people, like we should be doing.” Alistair told the woman.

In response Morrigan rolled her eyes. “I’m going to go ‘help’ elsewhere if you don’t mind.”

“Is she always like that?” Mattie asked once the woman was gone.

Alistair, Gilbert, and Mathias sighed as if to say “you don’t even know the half of it”.

“She makes Lovino look like a saint.” Gilbert said first, thinking of the grumpy Italian. It was too, the Italian had a level of jerkness, but Morrigan seemed to go above Lovino’s level in every way. It could be like Alistair said, her way of being nice. But at times it seemed hard to believe.

“How long until sundown? I want to make sure I’m prepared.” Antonio asked, hoping to find an axe somewhere and maybe even armor. He had no idea what a darkspawn was, but he’d rather go fully armored than with nothing but the clothes on his back.

“We have a few hours until sundown, why?” Mathias asked.

“I want to find some armor and a weapon so I can join in the battle prepared!” The spaniard answered honestly. He knew that with no money or anything like that obtaining armor and a weapon would not be so simple.

“Oh, well we got spare armor somewhere. Some merchant gave us one too many of the armor Alistair has on and we didn’t want to sell it. I think we have an ax too…” Gilbert told him, remembering how Mathias on the journey here had demanded they stop so he could buy an axe. Like with the armor, the merchant had sold them two of the same axe. Now they had no money and extras of everything.

“Thank you!” Antonio thanked when Gilbert had scoured through everyone’s backpacks for the armor weapon. Once Gilbert had found the armor and axe, he handed it to Antonio who began to put everything on where he stood. Now fully armored, he took his new weapon and gave it a few practice swings, keeping his grip firm on the ax. “There we go! I think I’m ready for war now!” he told them with a grin.

“So what are we supposed to do?” Arthur asked, hoping to come up with a plan of sorts before the battle started.

“Try and keep yourself and others from dying and kill as many darkspawn as we can?” Alistair shrugged. It was really the only plan they had, and it was one they seemed to use a lot in battles.

While they waited for night fall, the large group stayed in what Antonio discovered was a chantry, going over various plans, and ideas on how to avoid casualties. As the sun began to set, the group walked out of the chantry, each moving to different areas around the town. Their new plan was to try and stop the darkspawn before they reached the town by blocking off entry points.

The sky grew dark once the sunset, like even the moon had decided not to shine over the town and an eerie fog settled over the hills, seeping into the town.

“T-they’re here!” A man cried out, shaking where he stood, fear evident in his expression. Antonio frowned and turned his attention to the fog, seeing creatures arise from it. This was something he never though he would experience in his entire life, but he knew he would have to remain strong if he wanted to win this battle.

It seemed like everyone was fighting, and to Antonio the fighting would not stop. He was starting to get tired and he could tell that everyone else was too. He saw Arthur and Vlad shooting magical fireballs at the monstrous creatures, saw Mathias and Alistair teaming up and trying to mow down every enemy that came near. He even saw the lightly armored people fighting hard, Mattie and Leliana shooting arrows from a distance at the beasts that managed to slide past either Mathias and Alistair or Vlad and Arthur. Even Morrigan and Lovino were working together to try and make it through this battle. The spanish man was brought back into reality as he heard a growl and managed to quickly dodge before the darkspawn that had managed to get up to him could hurt him. He countered it’s attack not long after dodging and swung his ax down on the thing, watching it fade into nothingness while he stood panting. He looked up at the fog and saw it disappear and along with it, any more darkspawn to fight. No more fog meant also that Antonio could finally relax, something he hadn’t been able to do since he woke up near the town. Sweat felt from his forehead while he sat trying to catch his breath, hoping that the fighting was over with since really he had been fighting since the sun went down. He heard cheering and saw that the sun was rising, meaning that the fighting was officially over with. Antonio cheered, glad everyone had made it through the night.

Antonio hadn’t meant to doze off in the chantry while everyone else was outside celebrating, he just needed the sleep. He could hear the loud cheering from outside, but didn’t care. Right now all he cared about was getting sleep and hopefully waking up in his home with all of this being one crazy and long dream.

“Toni! Wake up! There’s been a major update!” Gilbert called waking Antonio up from his slumber. The spanish man frowned, ‘so it wasn’t a dream…’ He thought sadly. He listened to what Gilbert had to say and arched a brow.

“So… A child is possessed you say? And to save him… we must travel to this circle thing and bring mages back?” He summarized wondering how long he had been sleeping for, obviously long enough for all of that to happen.

“That’s about it, so, wanna come with? I asked Mathias and he seemed eager to join with and Vlad nearly begged to come a long. And I saw you in battle, you seemed to know how to fight.” Alistair told him with a grin.

Antonio sat in silence looking over his options. He could stay with his friends here and wait for Alistair to return… or he could just join and continue going along with whatever was happening. He had already come this far without any idea as to what was happening so… “Alright! I’ll join with you guys.” He told them causing Vlad and Mathias to cheer.

“You sure Toni?” Gilbert asked, willing to take Antonio’s place should he have to.

“I’m sure! I rested long enough and I might as well see more of where ever we are!” The spanish man insisted and stood up, strapping his gifted ax to his back. He had no idea what was in store for him but he knew he wanted to help in any way he could.

Chapter Text

Chapter 6: The Circle of Magi

Lucia felt herself groan as she awoke, her torso still tender. She looked around, slightly groggy and confused as she tried to recall what had happened. She remembered demons attacking the tower, a templar trying to protect her… and then… she gasped. Al! She had tried to save him after he went to get her. She winced as she sat up, her hand moving to her side. She wasn’t bleeding at least. She stood up, hoping to wander around until she found Alfred and frowned, seeing and feeling a barrier all around her. It was like she was in a cell. She squinted her eyes to try and see past the magic and saw across from her was the awkward templar that had tried to save her. It seemed that he too had a barrier around him, one that was keeping him contained in what she assumed was makeshift prison cells. She couldn’t see Alfred anywhere near which made her hope that he had escaped and not that he had died.

“Hey.” She called out, hoping her voice was loud enough to carry over to the templar.It was no surprise that the man didn’t respond to her. He seemed to preoccupied and for all he knew she was just calling out for no reason.

“Templar!” She tried again, this time causing the man to turn to look at her. She wasn’t sure how that got his attention but it was better than nothing.

“Miss?” He blinked before he appeared relieved. “Oh thank the Maker, I thought… we thought.” He paused, moving as close as he possibly could. “We thought you had died here. The mages they, they just threw you in that cell and left, not once had any of them checked on you.” He explained to her.

She took in all the information he had provided her and looked down at where her hand was, wondering just how long she had been unconscious for. “Do you know Alfred? He’s dressed like you and had weird hair and glasses?” She explained, needing to know what happened to her friend after she was attacked.

“Yes. He works with me. He was actually the one told me about you. He seemed worried for your safety.” The man told her.

Lucia nodded, glad that he knew her friend, though that didn’t help her in figuring out where he was now. “Uh Templar? After I was attacked, what happened? How did we end up in these like cells?” She asked.

“I… my name is Cullen, Miss. And I was not present when you were attacked but Alfred went into a frenzy. He killed off the abomination that had injured you and looked ready to destroy everything. But a demon, one that seemed larger and all around different from the others came. It put some spell on Alfred and myself, one that put us to sleep and when we awoke we were in cells with a mage tossing you in another one.” The templar, Cullen told her.

Lucia looked through the barrier, hoping maybe the distortion from the magic had caused her to be unable to see her friend. But that did not appear to be the case. Her friend was simply gone. “Where is he now?” She asked slowly, feeling a sense of dread hit her.

“He… He was moved into another room not long before you awoke, miss.” He told her softly.

“Uh, you know… instead of constantly referring to me as, miss. You could just call me Lucia, since that’s my name.” She told Cullen with a shrug. “But… back to Al, where did they take him?” She asked. She felt that now that introductions were handled it was time to go back to the most concerning fact. Alfred was missing and Cullen had told her that he had been moved into another room.

Cullen opened his mouth to reply but closed it as loud screams echoed into the room from the next room over. His expression was grim and he could tell Lucia recognized the scream all too well based on how panicked and horrified she looked.

“What are they doing to him?! What is even happening?” She demanded, her gaze glued to where the screams were coming from. Then it seemed like it was her turn. Lucy had spotted a demon that had entered room and focused on her and the next thing she knew, she was surrounded by nothing but darkness. The poor girl looked around in a panic for the templar that was in another barrier cell but she could no longer see him. “Cullen!?” She screamed wanting to hear him or anything for that matter. Running, she found nothing. It was all just pitch darkness. The dark abyss. Lucia let out a scream as tears flowed from her eyes freely. She was alone and she hated it. In fact, it was her fear. “Al!? Anyone!!!!” Her cries for help were hopeless. The only thing she could do was fall onto her knees and rock back and forth as she screamed and cried. As suddenly as it started, it had stopped, but it did not stop her from feeling horrified. She was alone! Her breathing had gone fast while her eyes were wide open yet she wasn’t seeing anything. All she could do was shake, rock back and forth, as well as she felt like she had lost control over herself.

 

Cullen’s eyes widened as the girl across from him called out for him. She seemed afraid, like she was seeing things that weren’t there, which… knowing how these demons acted was probably the case. She screamed and all he could do was watch, focused on the young girl that seemed so afraid. She called for Al next, but of course, the other male could not respond to her. She fell to the floor, her knees hitting the broken stone that made up the bottom of her cell hard, her body rocking back and forth her breathing growing more and more rapid. He knew those signs all too well, those were the clear signs of someone having a panic attack. “Miss- Lucia!” He called out to her, trying to get her attention in anyway he could. It was as if she had suddenly lost all of her senses. No matter how loud he was, she would not hear him. “Lucia!” He tried again. She looked so afraid that he wanted to help calm her. “Whatever the demons say, don’t listen. They are simply filling your head with lies!” He called out, hoping his voice would get through to her.

And suddenly it seemed like it was his turn. A woman who looked similar to the girl on the floor was walking up to him. But there wasn’t something quite right about her. She moved in a way that was unfamiliar to him. “Cullen…” The Lucia-like purred out his name which made his face turn red. ‘How is this possible? How can there be two of them?’ He thought with some confusion. “Don’t you know I want you?” It was a desire demon that was doing this. He shook his head fighting the temptation the demon was creating.

“I know what you are, you will not manipulate me demon!” Cullen then knelt down and clasped his hands together and began praying to the Maker. He relied on his faith to make him stronger. To get him through this nightmare. Though, he did wonder how long it would take for the demon to break his will. As he prayed, he heard laughter come from the demon Lucia. She had come closer to him with her arms reached out to him. His golden brown eyes widened as he moved away from her reach.

“Cullen… Don’t move away from me. I need you.” The voice continued to tempt him. Were these his impure thoughts? He slammed his fists down onto the floor in anguish. There was no way he was going to let the demon win. He knew what it was, but didn’t know how to get rid of it as she remained neared him. His eyes closed as he went back to praying. Now also rocking back and forth.

Slowly it seemed her senses had returned to her. She could hear the anguished cries from Alfred in the next room over, feel the scrapes on her knees from when she had slammed down on them earlier, and see the things around her. Lucia slowly moved from her cradled position and stood up, tears still flowing from her eyes and down her cheeks. Across from her she saw a demon at the barrier cell Cullen was in, one with an almost womanly body and a pointed tail. It appeared to be taunting the templar, trying to get to him while he prayed. “H-hey…” she called out, her voice still shaky from both the crying and horror she had experienced. “Get away from him!” she tried harder to sound strong, hoping it'd work and the demon would move away from the man.

The demon turned toward her, smirking as it sauntered over to where the young mage was held. “Does the little girl wants to play too?” the demon mocked.

“Go away.” Lucia told the demon weakly.

The demon laughed. “Your attempts at bravery are amusing. I look forward to being the one to personally steal that pretty little body of yours.” The thing purred into Lucia’s ear. “Now, be a good girl and return to nothingness~”

Hearing those words, Lucia jumped up, fear clearly visible in her dark blue eyes. “No...please. Not again.” she begged, not wishing to be trapped in a dark abyss by herself again. She let out a whimper as everything went black, her body slowly sinking into the floor, hugging her knees tightly. “C-Cullen… Al…” She cried, wanting nothing more than to have both men with her, to reassure her that she would be alright. But no one responded. She was utterly alone and she felt so afraid that she couldn’t even think any more.

“Demon leave this place!” Cullen called, hoping his words would be enough to cause the demon to leave and the spell over Lucia would break.

The demon laughed, it’s gaze focused on him for a few moments before it moved back over to him, clearly enjoying tormenting the imprisoned pair. “Oh little boy~ Do you wish to play again?” It asked in a seductive voice.

Cullen stared, enraptured by it’s charm over him and felt his head nod despite him not wanting anything to do with the demon. “I…” He started to speak, his mouth remaining open as the demon drew closer to him.

“Yes?” The demon purred.

“...I… maker…” Cullen felt as if the trance he was under broke. He backed away as if the demon was going to poison him with it’s words… which would not be unlikely and knelt down to pray, trying hard to remain sane in this prison.

He could hear the demon laugh, as if it had expected the reaction he gave. “Sloth gave me fun new toys. I can’t wait to break them.” It said, still cackling maniacally.

-TIME SKIP-

Cullen wasn’t even sure how long it had been since everyone had been captured. At some point Alfred had been returned, though as they brought him back from the other room, he seemed distant, like he was nothing more than a mere shell. Lucia had stopped her screams after what Cullen could only guess was the first or second day. Now all he heard from her was cries and whimpers, her body had yet to move from the huddled position it had been in. The sight of both of them had broken the older templar’s heart. He liked to think he was still strong, but even his own will power was starting to fade. The demons and blood mages had changed up their tactics on how to get under his skin. No longer did they try to seduce him. They moved onto something darker. Now whenever they came over to his prison they would show him the dead comrades he couldn’t save, sometimes even going so far as reanimating his deceased comrades corpses just to get a rise out of him.

Cullen knew they were simply messing with his head but he wasn’t sure how much longer he could handle all this. He had yet to sleep since being captured and none of the mages that came into the room would feed any of them.

“C-Cullen?” The templar nearly jumped as he heard the soft raspy voice coming from across the room. It seemed the spell on Lucia had finally broke for now. “How long… have we been here?” She asked.

The man had no answer to give her. For all he knew it had only been hours. With no light from outside available to tell how many times the sun had set, there was no way of knowing just how long they all had been there. “I don’t know..” He answered.

“And Al? Is he okay?” She then asked, looking desperate, even through the distortion that the barrier gave he could see that she needed to know about Alfred.

Cullen frowned and gazed in the cell next to his where the younger male had been tossed in. He hadn’t heard anything from inside it and with the stone wall separating the two templars he had no way of knowing what the American even looked like.

“We’re going to die here…” The girl stated, tears flowing freely.

Cullen had no way of reassuring her, or even telling her that there was a chance they’d be able to get out of here. His own anxiety had long since given up on hope. He had no idea what their captures had in store for them, and frankly he had gotten to the point where he no longer cared. He was tired, and stressed, and hearing the girl’s constant cries, and picturing just how gone Alfred was… it was starting to get to him.