His arrival was a bit like a scene out of one of Varric's books.

It was winter in Skyhold, and with winter came frequent blizzards that would bury the fort under feet of snow for weeks at a time. While Dorian was always happy to clear the major pathways, using a bit of fire with the flick of his wrist, there was nothing to be done when the blizzards were still raging. It was right in the middle of one such storm, at dinner time, that he arrived.

A great gust of freezing wind clawed its way through the hall as the main doors slammed open, two flustered guards with a tall figure standing between them, entering swiftly. The figure between them raised his hand, sending the large doors shut behind them with a loud protesting groan and a clang. The guards looked at each other, baffled, then shrugged and shook their heads. They led the way up to the head of the long table on the right, where the Inquisitor sat, watching the commotion with surprise. As the small group reached their destination, one of the soldiers spoke.

"Inquisitor, this man claims to know you; though he wouldn't give us a name. We thought you'd prefer to see him yourself before we tossed him in the cells. He assaulted the gate guards because they didn't let him in immediately."

"So you invited him to dinner without a moment's consideration that none of us are armed," Dorian piped up, "and that this person might be an assassin; especially considering he assaulted the guard? Are you completely mad?"

The soldier froze, his lips forming a perfect 'O', before he closed his mouth and swallowed.

"Ser Pavus, I'm sorry. I hadn't considered-"

"Of course you hadn't. I doubt you've ever considered anything in your life." Dorian rolled his eyes and sighed, turning to the Inquisitor with a look that asked, 'what now?'

The Inquisitor steepled her fingers in front of her, her sea-colored eyes steely as she regarded the figure between her guards. She knew who he was, but he was the last person she'd ever expected to see storming into her keep; especially amidst of one of the heaviest blizzards they'd had to endure that winter. It had been, what- three years since she'd last seen him? Why did he only just then arrive? More importantly, why had he arrived at all? She took a breath and waved her hands at the guards in dismissal.

"You may go. I do know him."

The guards bowed and left as she looked at the figure, eyes calculating as she finally addressed him.

"Abelas. It has been some time. Though, to you, it probably seemed but a blink. Why have you come here, after three years?"

"That's Abelas?" Dorian gaped, "I thought he dropped off the face of Thedas? At the temple of Mythal, no less. Which, last I checked, is nowhere near Skyhold."

Abelas gave the slightest nod in Dorian's direction, "You are correct, shem. But my business here is none of your concern. What I have to say is for the Inquisitor alone."

The Inquisitor raised an eyebrow, folding her arms over her chest as she leaned back in her chair.

"What news do you bring then, Abelas? It must be rather urgent, for you to come here in the middle of a blizzard."

He nodded, "It is. I would speak with you, alone. It... concerns Mythal."

Her brow creased in suspicion. The voices of the well had not whispered anything odd in months. Why would a servant of Mythal suddenly wish to speak with her, if not for those voices- if not for her connection to Mythal? The voices provided no answers, though they urged her to trust him. Her trust was not so easily given. Not anymore. She would hear him, but she would watch him too. She sighed and lit a fire rune beneath her plate of nearly untouched food as she stood.

"Very well, come with me."

His small bow of assent as she passed him surprised her, but she kept the surprise from reaching her face. She assumed he was merely showing her respect in front of the others, though he had not bothered before...

Something to be wary of.

She led the way to her quarters; the one place in the keep where conversations would not be overheard. Well, by anyone but Compassion. He still haunted the halls sometimes, but spent most of his time in the Fade now. She'd stopped calling him by his human name long ago. It didn't fit him anymore. She reached the top of the stairs and waved her hand towards the fireplace, sending more life into the flames to warm the room, and gesturing for him to have a seat in one motion. He declined the offer. Of course.

She rolled her eyes and walked to a side table, where a decanter of ice wine sat on a tray, beside a collection of glasses. She chilled the bottle and two of the glasses with a small frost spell, then poured one glass for herself. She looked to Abelas and pointed toward a second glass, offering. He shook his head. She shrugged and walked back to the fireplace with her glass, seating herself in one of the chairs comfortably. He could stand for all she cared; she wasn't about to stand awkwardly around, in her own chambers, no less.

"So, what's this about?" she waved her hand for him to proceed.

He launched into questions immediately, as if she'd opened the floodgates with that simple gesture.

"After your defeat of the enemy we allied with you against at Mythal's temple, did you notice anything out of place with your connection to Mythal? Did the voices mention anything?"

His questions gave her pause. She had indeed noticed something odd and the voices had overwhelmed her when it happened. When she'd come to, days later, she found herself being hovered over by a healer and Dorian asleep in a chair on the other side of her bed. When questioned, the voices had no definitive answer for their sudden outcry, almost as if they were blocked from telling her. It had been something that plagued her thoughts ever since, and she grasped at the possibility that she could finally learn more, sinking her fangs into it immediately.

"Yes, something happened a few weeks after. It knocked me out for days. The voices never had an answer for what happened, but I've always wondered. The connection to Mythal never wavered, as far as I'm aware, but it..." she couldn't quite explain it properly. The flavor of her connection had been altered when she woke. It was something strained, darker; not sinister, just... sad. Regretful.

Abelas saved her from her floundering and voiced the feelings she couldn't find the words for, "It was altered."

She nodded, "Yes. It feels different now; only sorrow and regret, where before there was purpose and comfort. But it's not just the feeling; it's the flavor, the smell, the aura of it... I can't properly explain it."

He held a hand up to silence her, "There is no need. All of the sentinels have the same connection as you do, and we have all felt it."

She raised an eyebrow, "Is that so?" She snorted, resentment tinting her voice as she continued, "Well, I'm sure you all weathered it much more easily than my shem body did."

The slightest wrinkling of his brow was the only change in his expression as he regarded her, his eyes sparking with curiosity at her words.

"Do you truly believe I would be here at all, if you were still considered a shemlen to us?"

She couldn't keep the surprise off her face this time, "What? That's all you would call me the last time we met. I assumed you still thought of me as such."

"No," he shook his head, "The moment you drank from the well, that changed. I see your vallaslin has been removed to reflect that alteration. Rather appropriate."

Her brow furrowed in a frown, "My vallaslin was removed for another purpose, by another hand. It had nothing to do with the well."

Understanding graced his features for a moment, before they smoothed into their usual almost-frown.

"Ah. So he freed you. Interesting. You were a slave to Mythal before, were you not?"

She sighed, pinching the bridge of her nose with her thumb and forefinger with a tiny healing spell, to ease the familiar throb of a headache beginning. When the ache subsided, she answered.

"That is what it would have meant to you, yes. That is not what it meant to my clan. Not that they cared for my explanation, once they saw my bare face. Either way, yes, I suppose I was freed. Though it certainly doesn't feel like it."

He quirked his head slightly to the side, "You do not consider yourself freed from slavery?"

She huffed a laugh, though there was no humor in it, "No. I am still bound to Mythal through the well. Even were that not the case, my bare face prevents me from ever being accepted back into my clan, or into any Dalish clan. They all see me as a flat-ear, or in my clan's case, harellan."

"You'd be accepted more easily than I would; if you could keep from calling them all shems, anyway," she retorted as she took a sip of her wine and looked into the fire, face rife with irony.

There was silence for a time, and she used it to quietly finish off her wine. She stood and moved to the table to refill her glass, as she waited for him to speak. He had yet to state an actual purpose for his visit, or whether he was willing to share what happened to their connection to Mythal, all those years ago. His fascination with her inability to feel free was puzzling. Why would he care? She may not be a shem to him anymore - only Mythal knew why that was, maybe she would ask him that when next he deigned to speak - but his presence and motives were confusing. She resolved to speak up if he didn't, when she went back to her seat.

She finished pouring her glass, and turned to see that he'd taken a seat in the chair beside hers; finally accepting the offer she'd initially made. She shook her head. Stubborn elf. He spoke when she'd settled back down in her chair.

"I can understand why you would feel as you do. To be called harellan for ignorance not of your own making is a terrible thing to endure. I imagine he felt the same."

She paused, her glass halfway lifted, and looked at him, "He? Is this the same 'he' you referred to as taking my vallaslin?"

He nodded, "Fen'harel, yes."

Thankfully, she had already set her glass on the table between them, or she would've dropped it as her entire world came to a grinding halt. Not that it would've made her look any more of a fool than she later imagined she appeared at that moment.


He paused, seeming unsure of himself for the first time since she'd known him. Though, her mind was more focused on his lack of explaining why he thought that Solas was the Dread Wolf, of all people. She'd had a hunch that Solas was older than he claimed, perhaps even an ancient like Abelas, but he couldn't be one of the Creators. It simply wasn't possible. The voices of the well were eerily silent as she reeled from Abelas' claim.

Abelas finally spoke, his voice hesitant, "The one who took your vallaslin, he was the elvhen that accompanied you to the Vir'abelasan, yes?"

She slowly nodded, unable to speak, lest the moment shatter and she wake to find it was all a dream. The irony of that possibility being the case would fit her brand of luck perfectly. She hugged her ribs tightly and sank deeper into the chair, feeling as if the entire world were pressing in on her. His voice slid in beneath that weight and protected her from it.

"That was Fen'harel. I understand he disappeared directly after your enemy's defeat. That is actually why it took so long for one of us to venture here: we have been hunting him ever since."

She snapped to attention, her eyes locking with his; gripping on the arm of her chair tightly making it creak in complaint.

"Hunting him? Why? Did you find him?"

A look of disdain clouded his face, but quickly gave way to resigned disappointment as he answered, "No. I am here because we have failed countless times in our search. He is always two steps ahead of us. As for why we seek him; we believe that the reason our connection to Mythal is so altered, is because it changed hosts."

She frowned, "Changed hosts? You mean she left Flemeth?"

"Yes. We believe she gave her power over to Fen'harel. It explains a great many things, not the least of which is the reason I have come here."

"Which is?" she asked, though she wasn't sure if she actually wanted to know.

She was still trying to wrap her mind around the fact that the elf she'd loved and lost, the love she'd scoured the Fade for night after night; her vhenan... was Fen'harel. The Dread Wolf. He who hunts alone. Bringer of nightmares. How appropriate. She'd been living a nightmare ever since he left her, broken and utterly alone, in the grotto at Crestwood.

He sighed, "Ever since Mythal joined with the Dread Wolf, we have all felt a strong pull to here. I volunteered to finally investigate, since we have exhausted all other options in our hunt. When I arrived, I found the source of that pull: you."

She couldn't have kept the shock out of her voice if she'd tried.

"Me?! Why me? Because I drank from the well?"

"No," he shook his head, "though we are all connected to each other through it, that was not the reason. Mythal has no more of a special attachment to you than she does to any of her servants. It is the Dread Wolf's connection to you that drew us here."

Her heart was already pounding, but now it seemed to double its pace, making her voice tremble as she tried to understand, "What sort of connection could I still have to him? He abandoned me before we even fought Corypheus, and finally abandoned us all as soon as that damn orb broke."

Abelas tensed when she mentioned the orb, "What did this orb look like?"

She gave him a confused look, "It's... over there, if you're really that curious," she pointed over her shoulder to the bookshelf that housed the fractured pieces. "I brought every piece of it that I could find back here, after he left."

He stood and walked quickly in the direction she'd gestured, spotting it halfway across the room and moving to it post haste. He hurriedly pieced it back together and brought it over to her, holding it in one hand, reaching toward her with the other.

"Your mark," he demanded, waving his hand insistently toward himself when she stared at him, dumbfounded, "give me your hand."


He growled a frustrated sigh, "Just do it, please. The foci can be restored if you aid me."

She gaped at him, perplexed, "What? He said it couldn't be saved. He seemed pretty certain of it, in fact."

"You can mend tears in the veil, can you not?" at her nod, he continued, "It is the same concept; the same magic, even. Your mark came from this foci. He could not restore it, because he was diminished, after his long slumber. We were not. We never slept for as long as he did, thus we are not drained as he was. Now help me restore the foci."

Apprehension lined her face as she slowly placed her marked hand in his outstretched one. What good would restoring it do at this point? His tone was instructional and calm, as he placed her palm against the orb and held her hand there.

"You will need to pour your mana into the mark, to give it more power than it normally uses. Activate it just as you would to close a tear. Use your magic to focus it on the breaks. I will be assisting with my own mana, but you must concentrate your will."

She nodded and the anchor sparked to life, a familiar ache rolling up her arm and over her body, as the mark she hadn't used in over a year sputtered and flared over the orb.

"Focus. Mend the tear."

She reached out with her magic to feel the shape of the orb, tasting the familiar flavor of it after the many months she'd studied and prodded it with her magic before then. She concentrated on the breaks, finding the crevices and channeling her mark's energy into them. The moment she found that focus, she felt immense power flowing into the mark. She looked up to see Abelas' eyes glowing blue against black, a dark smoke of some ancient form of magic rolling off of him and into the mark. The sight nearly mesmerized her, but she snapped her gaze back to the orb, to redouble her efforts. Whatever magic he was using, she would not waste it on her curiosity. That could come later.

She closed her eyes in concentration, feeling the edges of the tear and reaching out to mend it the way she once mended the rifts. Her ears pricked as she heard what sounded like ice crystals forming from her magic, but quickly realized it was the orb beginning to repair, under the influence of their combined efforts. Bit by bit, the cracks sealed and the pieces fused back together. Finally, with one final burst of raw energy and a sharp, crystalline sound, the orb was once again whole.

Abelas released her hand and the orb, his eyes following the orb as it righted itself and hovered above her palm, bathed in the light of her anchor. She felt almost the same pull to the foci that she'd felt when she'd snatched it from Corypheus, and sent a pulse of energy through her mark, meant to unlock instead of seal shut.

The effect was stunning. A brilliant green glow suffused the room with overflowing magic from the foci. She wondered just how well she could control such a powerful object, given her ties to it. She looked over to see Abelas bathed in the power, just as she was; a look of profound peace on his face that she had never observed, nor expected to see. It was at that moment when she first realized he was... strangely beautiful.

It was something she'd hardly had time or interest to consider the last time they'd met, and she wasn't entirely sure why she noticed it now. But notice it, she did. She filed it away for later pondering; there were far larger concerns at the moment. She slowly eased back the power of the mark, letting the orb drift down into her palm to land with a tiny smack. The sound seemed to startle Abelas from his peaceful trance. His eyes flicked open, once again back to their normal bright, gleaming gold. They met hers and suddenly, he appeared to remember his surroundings with a slight frown.

"So," she said with the smallest of smirks, "Abelas can be Atisha, from time to time."

He scowled at her, his gaze sinking to the orb in her palm, "If you felt no peace at being bathed in a god's magic, then that is your great loss."

"I didn't say that. But, I do have eyes," she gave him a slightly more obvious smirk, which might've been the closest she'd come to a genuine smile in a long time.

"Now," she sighed, "I have some questions, and I believe you have the answers."

He nodded, "Ma nuvenin."

She gave a small bow of thanks for his acquiescence before continuing, "Ma serannas. First, why did you want to restore the foci that marked me?"

"Because we can use it to find Fen'harel and Mythal."

"Huh," she paused, absorbing his answer.

"Alright. Second, what magic were you channeling into my mark? I've only seen the like in the Fade, and it was never adequately explained."

He looked slightly confused and offered what explanation he could, "It was... just mana. No particular spell or special kind of magic."

She raised an eyebrow in skepticism. She'd certainly never had her eyes turn black and glow blue, nor had she ever exuded smoke. Except for that one time she caught herself on fire with her own spell, but that was... a very long time ago. The tips of her ears blushed in her private embarrassment.

"I call halla shit," she snorted, "I've channeled mana more times than I can remember, and it's never once looked like that."

He cocked his head slightly, studying her. He narrowed his eyes and she felt his magic lapping out at her and the smoke thinly seep from his eyes, though they stayed their normal gold color.

"You have not taken advantage of the power you gained from the well. If you do so, it will look the same as when I channel mana. It is simply an excess of potential magic which gives it that appearance. I can show you how to unlock it later. I assume you have more questions for now?" His magic receded, the thin smoke dissipating.

She bit back the urge to ask him how to unlock it right then, and nodded, "Yes. You never answered my question about my connection to the Dread Wolf."

He paused then, his gaze scrutinizing her before he answered, "You have a connection to him for two reasons, though they are similar in nature. You have both left marks on each other that can never be removed."

Her brow raised in surprise, "How so?"

He sighed, pointing to her mark, "His foci marked you with his magic, and you marked his heart as yours. Both pull him to you strongly, though he does his best to ignore them."

"His foci? This is... his?" she sputtered.

The implications alone were staggering. His foci used to create the breach, his foci used to forever change her fate. His foci that she thought was the only thing he cared about in the end, his foci that she broke and caused her lose him forever. His foci that had been sitting, broken and dormant in her room, every night for three years; while she dreamed of a wolf with too many eyes. She could barely hear Abelas' response as her blood roared in her ears.

"Yes, it is. Does this surprise you? I suppose if he never told you his identity, he would not have revealed his ownership of the foci, either. He always was a fool when it came to the things he loves."

Her mind ticked over the facts one by one in her head, but there were crucial elements missing. One of them in particular was burning a hole in her skull.

"How did Corypheus get the orb from him?"

"That, I do not know. It is possible it was stolen; or that Fen'harel gave it to the beast to unlock, since he likely could not himself, and the beast betrayed him. As beasts are wont to do. If the latter was indeed the case, it was a rather large gamble on the Dread Wolf's part, but certainly not the largest he's taken. That it ended in disaster for him, is no surprise. His gambles rarely pay off. The fact that he helped defeat the beast, and attempted to assist in cleaning up the mess his magic made, does lend credence to the second option."

Though she couldn't help but agree, she shook her head at the horrendous ridiculousness of it all. She set the foci on the table, wanting nothing to do with it now. His gamble had cost thousands of lives, and very well could have cost the entire world, had she not been there to accidentally take a part of his magic. She ended up fixing most of his mess, while he walked quietly by her side and called her vhenan. No wonder he called her that: she was doing his work for him all along.

"So the entire reason he claimed to love me was because I had the mark and I fixed the mess he made," she laughed bitterly, "Figures."

He sighed, "As loathe as I am to say it, you should not be so quick to disbelieve his love for you. If all he had wanted from you was to use you as a tool, he would not still be marked by you. He would have long forgotten you and moved on, if that were the case."

She mulled over that for a time, chewing on the inside of her cheek and staring into the flames licking upwards in the fireplace. How much could she possibly mean to him? The fact that she was even thinking of it disturbed her more than a little. How much could she mean to a god? She was mortal. Marked, maybe. A head full of ancient voices long dead, yes. A connection to Mythal - and apparently him - that never waned, true enough. But still mortal.

Her gaze slid to Abelas, releasing her cheek from her teeth to ask, "Why don't you consider me a shem anymore? Is it just because I drank from the well?"

He took a breath, as if bracing himself to reply, "Yes and no. While you partaking of the well is the root cause, it is not the actual reason. You are now as elvhen as the rest of us are. The only reason you do not have our power and immortality, is because you have not learned how to unlock it. Because you did not think to ask the voices how to do so."

She stared at him, stunned. Unbidden, the voices whispered the secrets that she had never thought to ask of them, as if Abelas had asked them himself. Her brow creased and her eyes closed as she listened, for the first time able to distinguish the voices from one another, to hear them as clearly as if they were sitting next to her. The more she listened, the more she heard and understood. It became clear how long she had been floundering about, with the ability to do so much more: to be so much more. Her eyes flew open and a gasp escaped her lips, the voices finished imparting their wisdom, and suddenly grew silent.

At once, a peace fell over her, as if the knowledge the voices had given her was the most beautiful, perfect, right thing that had ever been gifted to her. More right than the mark on her hand, more right than the love of a god. It felt natural, as though it should always have been that way.

So she used it.

Her lungs sucked greedy breaths from the air around them as her heart drummed a staccato beat against her ribs. Her mind and body raced to catch up with the influx of a heady blend of life and raw power, which began to course through her. Her fingers gripped the arms of her chair so tightly, she thought they might break. Every muscle in her body felt both completely ruined and rejuvenated all at once. Her spine went rigid and unyielding as her staff, as it bowed off the back of her chair. She felt power - unlike anything she could've imagined - push up from somewhere deep inside her, cascading through her in a rush of adrenaline, born of pure magic. The overflow was too much to contain. She was coming apart at the seams.

Suddenly, intense calm radiated from somewhere to the right of her existence. She latched onto it, sinking her teeth and claws in, holding on with every ounce of her newfound strength. It soothed the raging glut of power inside her, tempering it and letting it simmer gently underneath her flesh. Her relief was profound.

She sank into her seat, her muscles finally relaxing. Her grip relaxed from the arms of her chair, and she heaved a sigh that settled her further into the comfort of it. Her heart began to slow from its racing beat, her breathing calmer as she inhaled deeply through her nose. That action started a chain of reactions that happened in rapid succession.

She could smell... everything. She slowly sat up with interest, sniffing the air before her eyes even opened. She heard her breathing, the roar of the flames in front of her, the minute sound of amusement from her right. She opened her eyes to a brightness that nearly blinded her for a moment, but adjusted far more quickly than she was used to. She looked around and noticed she could pierce into the darkness of the shadows in her room, seeing all of the details she'd missed before. Then, she turned to find the source of the occasional tiny, huffing laughter to her right, and nearly jumped out of her seat.

What her eyes saw with more clarity than she'd ever thought to exist, was the most sorrowfully beautiful thing she'd ever witnessed. His aura fell from him in waves of light that sang to her of sadness long harbored, of precious beauty and love lost, and of happiness held like sand slipping through his fingertips. There was no tinge of regret, but as she focused, there was much longing in those shimmering golden eyes; wistfulness and wishing for a song nearly forgotten. A song that could make spirits weep with joy.

She felt something touch her cheek, and reached to wipe it away, only to discover that spirits were not the only ones that could weep at such things. He had watched the tear roll down her cheek, observed as she wiped it away. She blushed, realizing she was staring at him, probably to the point of rudeness. She looked away quickly, locking her eyes to the fireplace once more.

"I'm... sorry, Abelas. I didn't mean to stare. I was... never mind," she trailed off.

She was having trouble concentrating. Even the sound of her own voice was different, as if somehow she was conveying all the emotions she felt with every word. It didn't seem possible. Certainly, a smile or sadness could be heard by anyone, but subtle nuances were lost in illusions of privacy or deception. She could hear her own embarrassment and discomfort, her sorrow at possibly having offended him with her rudeness, the sincerity of her apology and the deception in cutting herself off for inadequacy. While she felt all of those emotions, hearing them was an entirely different matter. She wondered if every elvhen had that ability. If Abelas did. What had she revealed to him in all this time, if he could actually hear every bit of it? She knew her ears and cheeks were red with shame, how could they not be?

She heard another of the small huffs of laughter escape him before he answered her.

"You did not offend me, lethallan. Though I am glad to know that your senses are now as sharp as mine, if your flushed panic is any indication. I have often wondered how shems can exist in such complete ignorance of the mere emotions and knowledge of others around them, without weeping in the agony of loss. Having witnessed your reaction to the transition, however, I believe I understand it a little better. Ma serannas, for allowing me to see it."

Every word he spoke was laced with genuine gratitude, curiosity, sincerity and a bare whisper of wonder. She chanced a quick glance at him, wanting to see if his aura reflected those emotions. One cannot force one's aura to lie. Keeper Deshanna had told her that once. She had been gifted with the rare ability to actually see the auras of others. While all mages could feel auras, actually seeing them was incredibly rare. She'd never understood what a treasure it was to be able to see like that, until then.

Her swift appraisal of his aura gave her enough to know he had not lied. That he had, in fact, most likely never lied to her. It was a reassuring balm that she needed more than her next breath. To know that he was someone who would always be honest with her, was something she would treasure. It was rare enough to find that in this world; even more so to find it in someone she barely knew. Though, she realized, she knew him more than any shem could now. That thought provoked the first genuine smile she'd had in years. She turned to him, letting him see it, unashamed.

"No, thank you, lethallin."

He gave a small, curious noise she likely would've missed before, "For what?"

She smiled again, "For being honest with me. For being you. For all your sorrow, there beats the heart of a truly good and genuine person beneath that armored chest. And... also for calming me during the transition. I was about to lose complete control, but you calmed it before it could do any harm."

The corner of his mouth twitched infinitesimally, momentary happiness and tempered pride singing from his aura.

"Such high praise, lethallan. Ma serannas. Though I do not recall purposely rendering aid during your transition, so I cannot take credit for it."

She canted her head in confusion, "If it wasn't you, then what was it that helped? There's no way I could've controlled it on my own, it had to be something."

His gaze slid from her, to the foci resting quietly on the table, next to her forgotten wine glass and nodded to it.

She raised a skeptical eyebrow, looking back and forth from him to the foci, before voicing her thoughts, "Why... or how... both?"

Another small laugh issued from Abelas as he explained simply, "Because you are his vhenan. As for how, you bear his magic, so you are as tied to the foci as he is. It is possible the foci reacted to you on its own, or that he worked through it to provide what you needed. You would have to ask him to know for certain."

"No," she shook her head, "I don't think he can work through it from a distance. If he could, he would've done so when it was in Corypheus' possession, to reclaim it."

"He likely did not have the power to do so at the time. As I said, he was diminished. Now, with Mythal's added strength, he could have enough power to work through it. It is quite likely that he will come to us, seeking it, given time."

"He will come here?"

He nodded.

She looked to the fire, worrying her lip with her teeth. She was unsure how to feel about that. Once, she would've rejoiced, thrown a feast even; if she'd known ahead of time. Now? Now, she knew who he was. Now, she had some inkling of what had transpired, to toss her into the role of the Inquisitor and the shem Herald. Now, she knew how much he'd fucking lied to her face. Could she really risk leaving her heart in his hands once more? What if he crushed it all over again? Perhaps he really did love her; but while it was somewhat of a balm to know that truth, it was one single island of truth in an ocean of lies, for which she had no boat.