Taeren stepped through the eluvian. It shuddered as it closed behind him. He looked back at it, clutching Dorian's birth right around his neck, which was drenched in Dorian's own blood, and watched the eluvian darken. Taeren's grip on the necklace tightened as he remembered the recent passing of all his friends. They had all insisted on helping Taeren confront Solas, but the Qunari invasion had proved too difficult to beat, and slowly, one by one, his companions died. Solas will pay for this! Taeren thought as he blamed Solas, had he not betrayed us, everyone would still be alive. Dorian would be alive! He shuddered and tried to hold back the tears that threatened to overwhelm him.
Taeren turned from the darkened eluvian and jumped in surprise at the Qunari who had his weapon draw and ready to strike. It wasn't until a few seconds had elapsed that Taeren realised that the Qunari and all their surrounding companions were frozen in stone. Did Solas do this? Taeren thought as he made his way through the standing graveyard.
As Taeren drew closer to the stairs he heard a voice. "Ebasit kata. Itwa-ost." The voice was sullen but full of pride. And Taeren knew it belonged to Solas. He ran faster though the graveyard of Qunari. "Maraas kata!" it was the Qunari leader Viddasala. Taeren ran up the stairs to confront the other elf, still hearing the conversation.
"Your forces have failed. Leave now, and tell the Qunari to trouble me no further" Solas said to Viddasala as he turned away from her when Taeren reached the top of the stairs. The Qunari drew her spear and readied to throw it at Solas. Solas stopped, his steel eyes flashed blue and the Qunari turned to stone.
"Solas" Taeren said as he drew closer to the elf. Solas turned to face him. Suddenly the Anchor flared up, pain wracking Taeren's body. Solas walked forward as Taeren fell to his knees in pain. Solas' eyes flashed blue and the pain from the mark subsided. "That should give us more time" Solas said solemnly as Taeren stood. "I suspect you have questions" he continued. And Taeren did. He wanted to know what Solas was doing.
And Solas told Taeren of how he could control the Anchor. How he was the elven god Fen'Harel. And his plan to bring back the ancient elves, tear down the Veil, and destroy the world in the process. As Solas concluded explaining everything the Anchor flared up, signalling the end of their conversation. Taeren cried out in pain, falling to his knees again. Solas walked closer.
"The mark will eventually kill you. Drawing you here gave me the chance to save you… at least for now" Solas said, kneeling down next to Taeren. Taeren looked up at Solas, bright blue eyes on the brink of tears.
"Save me?" He spat at Solas. "All my friends are dead because of you! Dorian is dead because of you! Fuck you, Solas!" Taeren said as he lunged at Solas, ignoring the pain in his hand. Solas dodged out of the way easily. Taeren stood, difficultly as Solas slowly walked towards him. Taeren tried to back up but an open eluvian was behind him.
I can't defeat him. But what's the point. I have lost everything. I would rather the mark kill me Taeren thought in defeat. In a last minute decision, as Solas was drawing nearer and nearer, he turned and dove into the eluvian. Solas reached out to close the eluvian before Taeren fell through, but he was too late. The last Solas saw of Taeren was his golden hair being consumed by bright green light as the Anchor suddenly sent a pulse of Fade magic out as Taeren fell through the closing eluvian. Taeren closed his eyes as he felt his world go white.
Taeren awoke to a light green flickering coming from the Anchor. He tried to move his hand to study what the Anchor was doing, but found he couldn't as they were bound in manacles. He suddenly jerked his head up and looked around. He was in an oddly familiar cell, but he just could not place why it was familiar. As he tried to figure out where he was, the door to the cell opened, and two women walked through. "No…" Taeren said quietly as he saw Cassandra. She had died in their pursuit of Solas. The dragon the Qunari had captured had mauled her to death. She had been ripped in two, and definitely dead, yet here she was alive and well and circling Taeren.
"Tell me why we shouldn't kill you now. The Conclave is destroyed. Everyone who attended is dead. Except for you" Cassandra said as she continued to circle Taeren. Why does she not recognise me? Wait, did she say the Conclave? But that was years ago! Taeren thought. He had no idea what was going on. Taeren stayed silent as he tried to understand what was happening. Cassandra suddenly grabbed his hand with the Anchor upon it, "Explain this" she said sharply.
"I have no idea what is going on. Where am I? What happened?" Taeren said in confusion.
"You're lying!" she said suddenly as she lunged at him. Leliana grabbed her and pulled her away, "We need him, Cassandra" she said.
The whole scenario gave Taeren the weirdest sense of deja-vu he had ever had. It's like when I first joined the Inquisition… No… There is no way… Taeren thought as an idea dawned on him. Have I gone back in time? I can't have! He thought in dismay. He had to be sure.
"Do you remember what happened? How this begun?" Leliana asked Taeren. He shook his head. He had no idea what happened.
"I remember falling, and a lot of white" he said quietly trying to understand how he had got here.
"Go to the forward camp, Leliana. I will take him to the Rift" Cassandra said to Leliana, who in turn nodded and promptly left.
"What is going on?" Taeren asked Cassandra. If I recall correctly she says something like 'it will be easier to show you' Taeren thought. Cassandra took his hand out of the manacle and bound them with some rope.
"It will be easier to show you" Cassandra said leading the way out of the cell.
The entire trip out of the cell Taeren couldn't believe he knew what Cassandra was going to say. If the Breach is in the sky, then I know I have gone back in time, Taeren thought as they approached the Chantry's doors. The doors were opened to a snowy town bathed in a light green glow. Taeren looked up into the sky, and there it sat; The Breach. "Oh… You have got to be fucking kidding me!" Taeren shouted in annoyance. I really have gone back in time. I'm going to have to close it again!
"We call it The Breach" Cassandra began. As she went to continue Taeren cut her off, "If you want my help to close that, can we skip the lecture?" Taeren asked. The Breach suddenly pulsed and pain shot through Taeren's arm. He fell to the ground, the pain was nowhere near the same as when he confronted Solas, but it had given him a fright.
"Each time the Breach expands, your mark spreads… and it is killing you" Cassandra said kneeling down next to Taeren.
"When is it not…" Taeren mumbled under his breath.
"What did you say?" Cassandra asked, not hearing him.
"Never mind. Let's get to the Breach" Taeren said as he stood up.
Cassandra lead him to the bridge leading up to the mountain pass. She then cut his bindings, "Come, it is not far" she said, leading the way up the mountain path. They had not gotten far when the Breach pulsed again, but Taeren was expecting it this time, the pain hit his arm, and he hissed at it, but he carried on up the path. Cassandra watched him, concern on her face. She knew the mark had to be hurting him.
They approached one of the many bridges on the path, but Taeren remembered this one, it was the one that collapses on them. He held out his hand to stop Cassandra.
"What's wrong?" She asked.
"3… 2… 1…" Taeren said. As soon as he said 'one' some debris from the Breach hit the bridge and destroyed it. Cassandra was staring at him in disbelief.
"How… How did you know that was going to happen?" she asked. Shit! I don't want to tell her I'm from the future, she'll think I'm insane!
"Uh… well, I saw some debris heading towards the bridge, and thought it would be safer if we weren't on it" Taeren said in masked confidence.
"Oh. Well, thank you" Cassandra said, buying his explanation.
They climbed down the rubble onto the frozen river, as there was no way to the other side of the bridge. A demon burst out of a vent and Cassandra leapt into battle, completely missing the second demon that appeared. Taeren grabbed two daggers from out of the debris, and attacked the demon. Once he killed the demon he saw Cassandra finishing her one off. When she noticed the daggers in his hand she approached him with her weapon drawn at him.
"Drop you weapon. Now!" she said sternly. Taeren sighed.
"Do you really think I will attack you, I just saved you from the collapsing bridge, don't you think I should be allowed to defend myself?" he asked her. She studied him for a moment.
"You are right" she said sheathing her sword.
They pressed on up the mountain path, fighting the demons in their wake. As they ran up the steps that were cut into the mountainside Cassandra commented "We are getting close to the Rift. You can hear the fighting." And Taeren could hear the fighting, and the fighting meant Solas was there.
Cassandra and Taeren dropped down into the battle and began fighting the demons. Once all the demons were dealt with Solas grabbed Taeren's hand and jabbed it towards the Rift and then pulled it away as the Anchor and the Rift had connected, thus closing it.
Taeren pulled his hand from Solas' grip and punched the elf in the face. The elf stumbled backwards at the hit, his hand covering his cheek where he was hit.
"What was that for!" he said in anger. Taeren turned to face Solas.
"Fuck. You." he said shortly and turned away from the elf. Both Cassandra and Varric were surprised at the sudden assault.
"Varric!" Taeren exclaimed as he saw the dwarf. The last he had seen of Varric was when a Fearling had thrown him from the Courtyard while pursuing Solas. They had heard him scream as he fell, but never heard him hit the ground. He had just drawn more and more quiet as he fell further and further away from the Courtyard.
"Do I know you?" Varric asked a little unsurely.
"Well not yet, but I know you, well know of you, how could I not know what my favourite author looks like?" Taeren babbled out. He really wasn't good at trying not to let on that he knew more than he should.
"Oh, well right. I just didn't think a dalish elf would read my books. Great to know they are being read so widely!" Varric said as he shook hands with Taeren. "So Kid, what's your name?" Varric asked.
"Taeren Lavellan, inqu…" Taeren stopped himself. He was so used to introducing himself as inquisitor. He cleared his throat. "Member of clan Lavellan." It finally dawned on him that his clan was still alive. Everyone was still alive. Dorian was still alive. He was now itching to close the Breach and hurry to Redcliffe.
"So, shall we go close the Breach?" Taeren asked a little to cheerfully. The party looked at him with varying expressions. Taeren looked disdainfully at Solas. Maybe this time I can save everyone he thought to himself as he stared at the Breach.