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◇ VI. (event; erased)

Andraste's flaming sword, even my dog is snubbing me. Acts like he never imprinted on me, the cheeky little bastard.

[The aforementioned dog can be heard growling; he sounds very unhappy, of course.]

Yes, yes, I'm not really your master, I know, I get it. [GROAN.] That's the last time I take my mother's advice.

[Filtered to Kirkwallers]

[For a few seconds, Hawke breathes into the phone like a creepy creeper is silent, unsure of what she wants to say. She already knows that they won't know it's actually her, and as far as she can tell, there's no convincing them otherwise, however tempting it is to try.

And that isn't much comfort at all. She was fine with being forgotten, but not while she was still around - this just hurts.

She sighs wearily.]

It really is me, you know. Just - thought I'd throw that out there.

...I'm sorry. [Annnd click.]

[ACTION; downtown Mayfield]

[Hawke doesn't really have a destination in mind when she leaves the house. She just wants to walk, feel the cold air against her face, and maybe hope that she'll be lucky enough to run into an answer.

Instead, she finds herself standing in front of the pet store, staring at the kittens in the window. She'd intended to get one for Anders, just because, and Christmas seemed like a good enough time for it, cultural differences or no. But there's little point in that now - not when she isn't even certain if he would accept the gift, however adorable it might be.]

...I really hate cats.

[For all her grumbling about it, though, she eventually does walk inside to get a closer look at the kitties.]

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... Really is who?

[Hawke doesn't say anything right away, instead staring at her phone, stunned. What the hell is she going to do with this cat if Anders doesn't even remember her?! >:(]

Hawke. The Champion of Kirkwall. Some woman you followed into the Deep Roads for fun ten years ago. You've forgotten?

... I haven't been to the Deep Roads... I wasn't there... ten years ago.

Was I?

... No. I wasn't.

[He always did say Hawke was the last thing keeping him sane...]

[Justice. The town finally gave Anders his demonbro back. And he's completely forgotten about her. Really, Mayfield? Really?]

Oh, today just keeps getting better and better. Nevermind, sorry, must have confused you with someone else.

I... yes. Yes, you must have... who are you?

[Should he even be talking to this woman? What if she's with the Templars?]

Who, me? Just your friendly neighborhood Hawke. No one special, apparently.

[She trails off for a moment, considering. This is a stupid question to ask, but she's curious to see how he answers...]

What's your name, then?

Edited at 2011-12-23 02:11 am (UTC)

Evasive. That's not an answer.

[There's a long silence. When he answers, there's something a lot like fear in his voice.]

I... I don't know... anymore.

Oh, it's a fine answer! I gave you my name and everything.

[That fear in his voice gives her pause, though. Sure, Anders had always been a little wary of the effects Justice had on him, but this is different. This is a little more frightening - Hawke can't blame Anders for that tone of voice right now.]

Are-- Are you all right?

But your name... It doesn't mean anything.

[He doesn't know who's speaking anymore. He doesn't know who he is anymore. Everything stopped making sense about seven years ago... When that girl died...]

[Another pause. And then his voice is stronger. Although... it's not really Anders speaking anymore.]

I'm fine. Nothing is wrong.

Only because you don't reme-- [COUGH] ...You don't know me.

[GO AWAY, JUSTICE. 8| Thank the Maker Hawke is good at p-p-pokerfacing, because this is really upsetting.]

Really. The constant voice changing is a little concerning, if you ask me.

Account swap for more Justice

Then... Then I can't trust you. I can't -- trust you not to take my magic. My mind.

[She could be a Templar. Everyone could be. They know -- they want him dead. Justice is right. They're right.]

What...? What are you -- Everything is fine, woman.

Oh, for the love of - I'm not a blighted Templar. [That assertion stings, Janders. B|] I like mages! ...Except for when they're trying to kill me; then all bets are off.

--Anders, snap out of it. Tell the nice spirit that it's time for a nap.

Edited at 2011-12-23 04:21 am (UTC)

You do? You... you're with us?

[Oh Maker, there is so much hope in that question. By now, anyone who'd ever stood by him had long since fled, thanks to the blurring of Justice and Anders.]

[... of course, as soon as he sounds hopeful, Someone has to come along and smash that into the ground.]

Or... you could be lying. You could be making it all up. To gain my trust! I will not be fooled by some stranger! I will--

[These blackouts are going to give him a migraine one of these days. Without Hawke to balance his mind... they're more frequent than ever. More intense. But he's back. For now.]

... You... you know? About the spirit?

My sister's an apostate, and-- [So are some of my most trusted companions, she wants to say, but she holds her tongue.] Well, why wouldn't I be?

[Seriously, Justice, piss off. B| Hawke knew that she'd been doing something right, to keep Anders afloat, but she never really realized the kind of impact she'd had on him. Not until now, anyway. It's a little jarring.]

Yes, I'm aware. It's a little obvious, you know. Moreso if we were face to face, I'm sure, with the glowy bits.

No one cares. No one... cares anymore. They're all afraid. They are too afraid to stand for what must be done. Too fearful of tyranny.

[Unfortunately, without the steadying impact of his friends -- which were brought his way by Hawke herself -- there is no control anymore. There's no "switch" to turn the spirit off.]

How... I've never seen you. How do you know about that? Have you been spying?


[This is not what she wanted, not at all. Things were supposed to get better when she erased herself. This wasn't supposed to happen, dammit.]

Yes, that's exactly it: I'm a voyeur with an abomination fetish. Oops, you found me out.

[Is this a bad time for smartass comments? Yes. Hawke knows this. It's just a coping mechanism, all right, don't judge.]

Yes... Fear is the weak response. They have no desire to fight for what they so covet.

[For all the destruction, and for all Kirkwall went to hell around them... the people Hawke was closest to benefited most from her. And for all his Vengeance-induced-insanity... Hawke really was his last grasp on sanity.]

... You are mocking me.

Edited at 2011-12-23 05:26 am (UTC)

Weak, perhaps, but rational enough. It's not so easy to simply fight. Your mages need a leader, a rallying point, a...

[A Champion. Shit. Hawke has to stop and swallow the lump in her throat for a second, please hold.]

Not just you. I'm in support of equal opportunity mocking as well as the freedom of mages, you know.

None wish to be so bold. None will risk themselves. None will do what must be done.

[Hawke can probably guess what he means by that.]

Your quips are unnecessary, and help nothing.

None... except for you, I take it.

[Yeah, she can make a very good guess. DAMMIT, ANDERS.]

And I'm very helpful, thank you. Look, can I talk to Anders now? He's slightly more fun than you.

You speak truth.

[There's a scoffing sound.]

There is no difference. There has never been.

[Hawke bristles. She knows the line between Anders and Justice had become increasingly blurry, in recent years, but she refuses to believe that the two of them are one. She has faith in Anders, even if he doesn't always deserve it.]

There is a difference. I was in a better mood before you took over, for one.

And how would someone such as you know? What do you know of justice?

[... in either sense of the word, apparently.]

I have about ten years' experience with justice under my belt. Trust me, I'm very familiar with it.

I will not believe the words of a mere stranger.

Stranger? And here I thought we were bonding!

I do not bond with anyone.

I do not need anyone. He does not need anyone.

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