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Hooks and Needles, Anders/Thea

Title: Hooks and Needles
Rating: PG for brief references to sex
Pairings: Hawke + Anders friendship, established Anders/Theodora Amell, beginnings of Hawke/Fenris
Summary: The Amell family apparently has a fondness for yarn.

Dinner with the Hawkes was becoming a regular occurrence for Anders. He knew that they didn’t have much, but he was grateful that they were willing to share what they had with an extra mouth. When he had the spare coin, he would contribute with a loaf of bread or some fresh produce, but that wasn’t very often, so he would offer to make repairs to their house or help with errands instead. He was in the middle of patching up a hole in the bedroom wall when Hawke came back.

“Mother, you won’t believe what I found today!” she crowed.

“Oh, Lexie, this is lovely!” That caught Anders’s attention. Getting up from the floor, he made his way to the main room. Hawke was standing next to her mother, pulling out several hanks of yarn from her market bag. “How were you able to afford it?”

Alexandra went over to the table and pulled out a few carrots and potatoes from her bag as well. “One of the vendors bartered some junk pieces we had collected for the yarn. They said that there was a mistake in the dye lot and it was unsellable as is; the junk I would have sold would have only gotten us a few copper bits, so I figured it was an even trade.”

Anders stared at the two women, his chest tight. What is it with this family and yarn, he wondered. The whole lot of them must have been cats in a previous life. He let his mind wander back to the Circle Tower, to endless nights of watching Theodora knit, of listening to the soothing click of her needles as they slid together while she worked on a hat or a scarf or the multitude of socks she had made for the other mages. If he thought hard enough, he could picture the way that candlelight would reflect off her hair as she worked, her eyes squinting in the dim light as she counted rows. “What do you plan on making with that?” he asked, bringing himself back to the present.

“Oh, I don’t know. I was thinking that we could use a couple of blankets, or maybe I could make several that I could sell in Hightown for some extra money.”

“Well, whatever you plan on doing can wait until later,” Leandra said, carefully putting the pale grey hanks of wool back in the bag. “Dinner is just about ready.”


After dinner, Anders found himself sitting with Alexandra in the third room of the house. There wasn’t any sort of furniture, but Hawke had said that she and her sister slept there so that their mother could have one of the two beds in the other room. There was a neatly folded pile of blankets with two lumpy looking pillows stacked on top in the corner, which made Anders make a mental note to see if he could find an extra cot or two so his friends wouldn’t have to sleep on the floor.

“I still can’t believe I got these practically free,” Hawke said, taking one of the hanks out of the bag and attempting to unravel it. She wasn’t having the best of luck, so Anders took the hank out of her hand and picked at the knot she had been working at. Reflex memory had the hank unraveled enough for him to give the start of the yarn to Alexandra and take the rest to hook over his hands.

“You look like you’ve done this before,” she noted.

He stared at the yarn, his arms moving in a slow circle in front of him to help as she wound it into a ball. “I had a…a friend,” he started, noticing that the tight feeling in his chest had returned, “who was – is – a prolific knitter. Actually, she’s your cousin.”

“I like using crochet hooks instead of knitting needles myself.” Alexandra stopped rolling up the ball and stared at him, his words sinking in. “Wait. You knew my cousin?”

“Well, seeing as she’s the Hero of Ferelden and the person responsible for conscripting me into the Grey Wardens, yes, I do know her.” He dropped the sarcastic tone and stared hard at the yarn in his hands. “You look so much like Thea that I thought you were her when I first saw you in my clinic. Besides your hair color, the two of you could have been twins.”

“Mother says I take after the Amell side of the family more, even if I did get Father’s hair.” She began to roll the ball up again. “What’s she like, this Thea?”

“She’s a mage, like me. I met her in the Circle; she said that she’d been there ever since she had been five. The templars caught her and her father when she accidentally set their hayloft on fire during the winter – she’s always been best with the primal school of magic, especially the fire spells.” He smiled fondly. “She would sneak out during the night and visit me whenever I was taken to solitary confinement after the templars brought me back to the Tower, usually bringing me a book to pass the time with.”

“You were good friends with her, then?”

He thought back to the years spent together, laughing and passing notes when they should have been studying, talking about the world outside their little island on the lake, the hours he had spent worrying about her when she had gone in for her Harrowing. The pain and perverse jealousy he had felt when she had been banished. If only he had known that permanently leaving the Tower only took aiding a blood mage, he would have offered to help her with Jowan in the first place. Granted, he had never known Jowan had been a blood mage, but still. “Yes, you could say that we were good friends.” He sighed and let himself think of soft, bare skin that turned golden in the firelight, of the sharp prick of fingernails against his back, of throaty moans and soft sighs and oh, Anders.

As perceptive as ever, Alexandra read his body language. “You miss her, don’t you?”

“More than I thought I would.” He stretched his legs out in front of him. “Okay, that’s a lie. I knew that I would miss her terribly. She doesn’t know about Justice and me; I don’t know what she would do if she did.”

Alexandra stared at him and put the finished ball of yarn in her bag. “There never was any bullying from other Wardens, was there?” she quietly asked.

Anders shook his head. “No, there wasn’t. I left after the first time Justice turned to vengeance. I couldn’t, I wouldn’t put Theodora in any sort of danger. For that to happen, I had to leave.” He closed his eyes and remembered standing over their bed, his pack slung over his shoulder. She had still been asleep, tangled up in rumpled sheets with a soft smile on her lips and her hair spread out around her like a fiery halo, her arm stretched out in the space he normally slept as if she had tried to hold onto him in her sleep.

Leaving her then had been the hardest thing he had ever done and one of the things that he regretted the most, even if leaving meant that she would be safe from him.

“I should probably go,” he said, wanting to get away from painful memories and eyes that looked so much like the ones he left behind. “Patients start to show around this time. Thanks for dinner, Allie. I really appreciate it.”

Hawke stood up and leaned against the doorway, watching as Anders kissed her mother’s cheek and waved to Bethany before leaving. She sighed, thinking that out of everyone that she knew, Anders was the only one to call her the familiar Allie. Before him, the only other person to call her by that name had been her father.

“Such a nice man,” Leandra said, going over to her daughter. “And now that he’s getting regular meals and putting some meat on his bones, he’s rather handsome.”

Alexandra rolled her eyes. She thought of Anders as someone who, in time, could become a very close friend. Bethany had already taken a shine to him because he was helping her sharpen her healing spells and if Bethany liked someone, then they were all right in her book as well. If she felt anything for anyone, she would have to go with the way that Fenris made butterflies flutter in her stomach. The two of them might not see eye to eye on certain topics, but she found that he was an engaging and interesting debate partner. Oh, be honest with yourself, Hawke. You think his eyes are pretty and his voice makes your knees turn to melted butter. “I get the hint, Mother,” she said, grinning. “But I think that you’re wasting your time on Anders. His heart belongs to someone else already.”


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Aug. 18th, 2011 02:16 am (UTC)
D'awwww that was adorable. It reminded me of Awakenings Anders, whom I adore. I think I need to replay Awakenings to get a glimpse of that again.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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