Taril_icon.gif Maura_icon.gif Adrian_icon.gif Fenris_icon.gif Minea_icon.gif Adeline_icon.gif Bethany_icon.gif Anders_icon.gif Cenn_icon.gif Kitty_icon.gif

Special Guest Appearance: The Arishok

Scene Title Summerday Sharks
Synopsis After being denied access to the legitimate Summerday, the residents of Lowtown gather together to celebrate their own; things… do not go well.
Location Lowtown
Date Bloomingtide 30, 9:31 Dragon
Watch For Ohmygod so much
Logger Dragony Goodness

Lowtown is never what one would call a bright and cheery place - most of the time it never even makes it so far as 'content' - but even in the dreariest of circumstances (sometimes especially in those) people find a way to bring joy, to bring laughter to their world… even if it's only for one day. Today Lowtown is strewn with brightly-colored paper, with chains of wildflowers and with lanterns. The smells of roasted meats and sweet pastries fill the warm afternoon air. There are barrels of wine and ale flowing. Most of the activity is centered on the open square at the base of the stairs up to Hightown, with tables and benches dragged to the sides and lively music coming from a rag-tag group of locals in one corner. They didn't get to celebrate Summerday with the high and mighty, but Kirkwallers are a hardy breed; they need no one's permission. They will have their day.

Taril knows about these things- his clan does enough trading with humans to know when their festivals are- he just didn't expect it to happen here. Here people are poor and miserable, what's there to celebrate? Being hot, poor, and miserable? Well, humans are strange (and water is wet). Still, he's not opposed to watching them to see just how they can find enough optimism for a festival day.

It's a clear indictment of Maura's time prior to Kirkwall that she looks absolutely delighted by the bright paper and flower garlands. Such simple decorations, but they do so much to liven the spirit. Or, at least, the spirits of those who are easily pleased. And, she is. She's already got a flower crown on her hair and a glass of wine in her hand as she practically skips through the crowd. Not that the wine is a terribly good idea, mind you. But what is a holiday for except to indulge in not-so-good ideas?

And providing some of the security for the event.. free of charge (Hadrian was not happy), several members of the same mercenary group have spread out to begin patrolling Lowtown and make sure the usual thugs and miscreants don't get a chance to ruin things. Maybe. Jovan being one of them, his sword clangs at his side and his expression is pretty much set in stone.

The rag-tag group of local musicians is joined by what appears to be a professional if common born bard. The young man isn't from Kirkwall but he still seems to have charmed the local bards into letting him join in and play with them. Dressed in an outfit of dark blue and black that makes him look nothing more than a merchants son Adrian is playing away on his dark wood lute. The upbeat tune fills the square, bright playful and extremely good for dancing. The handsome male with his ebony curls scans the area with bright cheerful grey eyes as he plays his tune. The lute makes a beautiful sound, the stranger clearly familiar with his instrument and aware of how to play it to the best effect.

You know, in some ways, Kirkwall was a place that suited Fenris. The grimness, that vastness, the way you could disappear in the crowds. It was… Convenient. Pleasant, though, that wasn't a word he would use. This, though, this day… Looking around as he leaves the inn in which he's been staying, that's… That's a whole lot of color. A lot of color that isn't there normally. The pale haired elf looks around, investigates slowly, the sound of music drawing him further into the festival, ears perks in curiosity.

Taril isn't doing the flower crown business. He's Dalish, the rumors are bad enough. He doesn't need anyone in the crowd to get further ideas. Still, he did go beyond the usual braid with his hair loose save for the upper half that's been pulled into a tail. He gives a wave in Maura's direction, but he's not going to caution the mage. With all of the people here, it would be hard for Templars to get through to a single person. At least that's the hope. For now he's going to pick a reasonably high spot to watch the crowd from.

There's flowers in Minea's hair. The white markings on her own face highlighted by the small blooms that have been woven into the few braids that dot her hair here and there. Her staff at her back, Minea's sticking fairly close to Adeline, one of the other Dalish elves present. Though for once, she's not in her warden grey and blue. Just blue, a simple dress and looking a little relaxed at the celebrations.

Well, you know, Grey Wardens are normally too busy for holidays. Not this year, though. This year, Adeline can actually attend. And, SHOCK OF ALL SHOCKS she is in a dress. A simple, blue dress, a white griffon embroidered upon the breast in a careful hand. She's even tamed her unruly dark hair, and it falls free in waves down her back. She's smiling, she's bright, and today she's given herself leave to feel alive.

Not only are the Kirkwallers a hardy breed, so are the Fereldens, many of whom had come to live in the twisting streets of Lowtown. Bethany also has a crown of flowers in her hair, and a bright smile on her face. Her brothers and mother are assuredly in the crowd somewhere, but the family has drifted apart to their own interests. For the most part Bethany is often seen smiling, laughing and occasionally helping to move around tables and chairs for people's convenience.

Grumbling about no-good baby-faced women who come in and boss him around and ruin a PERFECTLY GOOD PLAN for the day, Anders emerges from one of the Darktown elevators with a vastly displeased expression on his face. The spear that's been his latest weapon of choice is nowhere to be seen and he wanders the streets and alleyways in faded shirt and trous, hands shoved into his front pockets and shoulders hunched forward in a posture that screams 'Leave Me Alone'. He eventually makes it to the festival square, but stays on the edges near the stairs. There's a space of empty wall thrown in shadow from the afternoon sun that makes a perfect spot to lean against and watch. SEE, MAURA, HE CAME. Doesn't mean he's got to be happy about it, though.

The music continues to play, one song ending and another taking its place. Adrian's lute seems to be the main feature of this one, and the ebony haired man's fingers seem to dance across the strings. The movements elaborate and elegant and the song a smooth yet ear catching tune that is designed to stick in ones mind and lift spirits as it flows through the square. Adrian begins to moves about the square as he plays, quick graceful steps bringing him around the area. Bethany gets a warm smile as the bard spots her and with a dip of his head Adrian keep moving and playing, spreading the music to all corners of the square before moving to return to the group once more.

Maura waves back cheerfully at Taril when she spies the familiar, tall, elf. She's probably going to try and force a flower crown on the poor man, so it's probably for the best that he picks a spot high up and away from her reach. And then she spots ANDERS. "Yay, you made it!" She happened to be twirling by. And obviously spotted him. Because otherwise she could neither be gleeful that he followed her 'advice'. Nor could he hold it over her head later if everything falls to shit.

Alright, so, strictly speaking he was supposed to be working. The Order wanted someone present, to make sure things didn't go awry with so many people in one place. Risk of blood mages everywhere, or some nonsense. Thus, there is a Templar, around the edges of the festival, watching, quietly, smiling faintly. Cenn has no intention of causing disruption in the festivities, however, and thus for now, he is but an observer.

Taril cannot resist this and you have Maura to thank for it. He slips down from his perch and makes his way over to Anders. "From the glare, I take it this is Maura's fault?" Oh he doesn't disapprove. "And here I thought you were some sort of mole person who would fall to dust in the sunlight. …what there is of it."

"Something to eat?" Minea offers to Adeline, a gesture to the food. "I could eat a horse right now." Hungry is something of a near constant state for the young elf, always getting her hands on something. You can be guaranteed to find something dried and edible on her person. But right now, there's so many tantalizing smells.

Adeline laughs a little, but nods. She'd had to start hiding her cookies (because yes, the Senior Warden both bakes, and keeps on her person, cookies, near constantly) from Minea awhile ago. "Yes, alright, lead the way." She says, Starkhaven accent heavy. She hasn't even been to one of these festivals since she left home.

Bethany smiles and even waves to Adrian, though she doesn't stop to interrupt his playing. That would be a crime. Instead she moves from where she's just finished helping a family move two tables together over to a relatively quiet corner. Adeline and Minea are also offered warm smiles when either of the wardens happens to pass by close enough to see her. However, Bethany's bright mood is dampened some when she sees a Templar wandering down from Hightown across the square. Though she does her best to not let her discomfort show, instead opting to keep an eye on Cenn while simultaneously avoiding him. Silently she hopes that her brother has wandered off to get into trouble elsewhere.

So much noise, and color, and twirling. What was with all the twirling? Fenris can't help but smile a little though. Climbing atop a barrel, the elf settles himself to watch and listen. And the joy is infectious, tugging at his mouth a little. Much less grumpy today than he is when trying to drink his thoughts away.

The sight of Maura twirling by and beaming at him manages to sour Anders' mood even further. It's not fair - he knows it's not fair - but he's been in a funk all day and this much blatant, in-your-face happiness when his insides are trying to rip themselves to shreds just seems pointedly unfair. "I hope you smile so hard your face falls apart," he grumps in the direction of the twirling-away Maura, but it's not until Taril gets in on this action that he huffs in earnest, arms folding across his chest. "Yes, it is her fault." See the petulant sulking? Totally not his idea to be here. The 'mole person' thing though, that earns Taril his very own glare. "Don't you have a tree to defile or something?"

Maura blows Anders a kiss when she hears the tail end of that comment about her FACE. Sorry pal, she's got wine in her hand and it's probably not even her first drink. Upi can't ruin her mood! Which is probably why she almost runs in to several people making her merry way through the crowd. "Oops! Sorry! Whew, didn't spill my drink. That dress looks gorgeous on you! Oh hi there!" she's a litany of meaningless, but well meaning small talk, directed at the multitude of people she passes. Someone take the drink out of her hand soon, please.

Perched on the roof of a nearby building, a great shape watches the ridiculousness of the mortal frolicking below. She seems less corporeal today, with light coming through her normally solid form. Those who have seen her before likely still can, but to everyone else she is no more than a breeze as she leaps from her perch and bounds through the streets like a kitten, scattering flower petals and the heady scent of cedar in her wake. This number of people together in one place to celebrate, to share joy and laughter and food and company, it makes her feel light and she can't contain the sourceless, girlish laughter that echoes wherever she steps. It's a happy day - the start of the human's mating season - and that energy is infectious.

And if a few extra flower crowns just happen to drape themselves in Fenris', Anders' and Taril's hair, then that's nothing to do with her.

Taril shakes his head. "That's just another one of those fantasy drive myths humans are so fond of," he corrects. "Although it's one I haven't heard, so now I know what your mind gets up to." He's doing his best to not smile at the mage's misery. Really. "Oh come on, you can't begrudge her wanting you to have some fun. Even I can't go that far. What's the matter? Eat a bad turnip?" Of course he's going to take the opportunity to try to pluck that wine from Maura's hand. He's not going to let the big brother role go completely. Oh and then he spots Fenris. "You know, I thought he had the corner on market for scowling on a sunny day, but you win this round." And oh damnit, flowers. "…Oh good. I'm a walking cliche."

Really, Fenris normally does have the market on scowling on sunny days held in quite a monopoly. Thus, it is almost strange, the lightness that hands around him when people are more busy dancing than staring. Or chasing. He's relaxed enough, even, that he doesn't realize whoever has put flowers on his head until they are there. Jumping near of his skin, Fenris growls low, and looks behind him. Green eyes find nothing but petals and the fading sound of feminine laughter. The elf sighs, shakes his head, and just… Actually… Leaves the flowers there.

Bethany's pass is noticed by Adeline, and the Senior Warden smiles. "Bethany, my dear, come get food with us." She says, inviting the Ferelden over to her and Minea brightly.

Adeline talks to someone and Minea looks over, the dark haired elf smiling. "I second that. Come. The more the merrier. We can secure enough food for all I am sure." Minea even goes so far as to offer her arm to Bethany. "You can choose the food even. I'm starving."

Everyone gets flower crowns except the bard. Adrian's job is rather thankless today yet still he plays on unbothered, though he does note the flower crowns appearing on the heads of the other men here with a faint pout. The music continues to spread through the square. The current song ends and another playful upbeat tune takes its place. This time he sings, a rich tenor with a Starkhaven accent filling the square. The song itself is rather traditional for a Summerday celebration though its also quite fitting for this particular one. The lyrics speak of hope springing in unlikely places, of people coming together in moments of joy, and of new chances and beginnings. He sings quite beautifully the voice blending nicely with his lute and the others playing their instruments.

Swear to God(s) … the flower petal tossing giggler isn't Maura. She's definitely giggly. (Nice try Taril, you got nowhere near her drink. She kept it in the hand furthest away from you on purpose.) And she has almost certainly been scattering flower petals. But, not from above! Even she's not dumb enough to try climbing anywhere right now.

All this joy, and now a song about hope… The Templar at the edge of things shifts, smiles, rolls his shoulder. While in his armor, he's not wearing his helm today. He watches Adrian intently, but who is really watching, him or Hope, that's another thing entirely.

Bethany had been sticking to the edge of the crowd since the arrival of the Templar, but then suddenly there are two friendly wardens attempting to pull her along to be sociable. There is the barest pause to consider before the Ferelden woman smiles, links one arm with Minea and offers the other the Adeline. "I'll have whatever you're having." She says to Minea. "I've learned to not be picky." Sure it's a joke about crushing poverty, but it's delivered with a smile. There's one final glance over her shoulder to the Templar, whom she's a little confused to see staring at the bard, but really that's better for her isn't it. If keeping the company of a pair of wardens won't keep a lone Knight off of her today, nothing will.

Adeline smiles, parting from Minea to take Bethany's other arm. She nods, beginning to lead them over to one the stalls set up for providing food for the festival. Breaded meats in a variety of sauces, mostly touched with honey or berries, hearty and filling, but sweet and full of summer. It's then, though, that the Senior Warden pauses. Adrian's voice catches in her ear and she turns around, watching the bard a little wide eyed. Sure, people traveled, but she has yet to come across someone else from Starkhaven yet, since coming to Kirkwall. It's been… Actually, awhile in general, and she can't help the staring.

'One of everything I think. Maybe I'll share." Maybe. Her arm easily holds tight to Bethany's as they settle into line for those breaded meats, licking her lips. Adeline's staring off though and there's concern on Minea's face, looking at her de facto boss, nudging her elbow. "Something wrong?" She's not been paying too much to music. There's food after all.

The Templar who appears to be watching Adrian gets a polite nod and a gentle smile from the bard in between verses. Adeline's wide eyed look is also noted and he raises a brow at the shock on her features. He looks a bit curious as to why she is staring at him but he just continues singing the song till its conclusion. Then he lowers his lute and bows gracefully to those watching him, deciding to take a break for now.

The celebrations are lively and finally seem to be entirely in full swing. The sound of music and laughter rings around Lowtown like a spell - and the echoes reach up as far as Hightown and down into Darktown's deep hollows. They'll say later that even the mages in the Gallows could hear faint strains of the joy from which they were kept if they opened their windows and held their breath. It's a party and no mistake - and looks to be set to continue well into the night.

Of course, that's when everything goes quietly to hell.

They come from everywhere, melting in from the warehouses, the docks - up from the elevators to Darktown and down the steps from Hightown. Massive warriors and slender assassins move with a grace and silence belied by their immense and towering size. There is no time between the first scream and the completion of their brutally efficient mission. The Qunari have taken Lowtown. One great brute of a warrior seizes the bas Saarebas lingering by the stairs, yanking both arms firmly behind his back and holding him in such a position as if waiting for something. Perhaps in deference to the fact that their second target is armed, three warriors surround the lone Templar, facing the mage-keeper with distinctly more respect than is afforded his counterpart. Only then - when the ring is complete and entirely whole, does the uppermost section part, revealing the largest Qunari yet - perhaps the largest of them all - flanked by his retinue of superior soldiers as he resolutely descends the stairs, surveying the mess his forces have gifted with a moment of order.

Ha, ha, very funny Taril. "I have my reasons," Anders spits back. "None of which have anything to do with you." But the Dalish hunter's managed to draw his attention to Fenris and the tight skin around his eyes eases just a little, softening the expression as a whole from something sharp to something simply… sad? The addition of the flower crown is, however, the final straw for the edges of his frayed temper. He reaches up to rip it from his head, but he never has the chance. Grabbed from behind and twisted in just such a way that the air rushes uselessly out of his lungs, Anders cries out involuntary shock and pain; the arms that hold his wrists feel like fire and ice, burning his skin and sucking from his veins the very energy that sustains him. It is Restraint and it wakes the wild thing in him. He struggles frantically against that hold, against the nightmare he cannot possibly be living. Anders has no idea what the Qunari are doing here, but he's not about to stay and find out - not if he can help it. He knows what they do to mages - everyone knows what they do to mages - and he will abide no more cages.

Well, that certainly puts an end to the revelry quickly enough. The glass dropped from Maura's hand and shattered when the first vestiges of a surrounding circle started to form. And she has tried to flatten herself against one of the pillars where she hid her stave when she arrived. As of yet, she makes no move for it. But her eyes immediately seek out her few friends. Taril, and the grabbed Anders. And she even notices the surrounded Templar. But now seems a poor time to cast a spell. Like, really poor time to cast a spell and try to help. So she stays very still once she's found her spot. And she waits, seeing how those of more martial skill are going to act first. In any ensuing confusion she may be able to help without being caught.

The sudden arrival of the Qunari makes Cenn take a step backward, only managing to get his shield off his back before he is circled. The Templar, however, distinctly does not enjoy being circled, and thus also draws his blade with the ring of metal that can only be one thing. Hope twists unpleasantly in his mind. All this beauty, all this joy, shuttered closed so suddenly by the arrival of the Qunari… She doesn't like it, not one bit. Looking more than a little confused, Cenn watches as the largest of them descends the stairs. "What is the meaning of this?" He calls, voice thick with a Ferelden accent, but able to carry across a space easily enough. He's commanded enough battles for that.

Adeline had been just about to call out to the Starkhaven bard, but her smile falls swiftly. Replaced by a stern seriousness, she takes a step forward, grabbing Minea and Bethany both by the arms roughly. "You two stay behind me and if I say to run, you listen, do you hear me?" She says, voice low but sharp, brooking no argument.

Fuck. All thought of food has been obliterated from Minea's mind at the circling of the event by the Qunari. A hand nearly itches to take to her staff but she doesn't. The Elf remaining very still though letting go of Bethany, wetting her lips in anticipation and moving behind Adeline with a minute nod.

Adrian was just about to reach for a glass of wine when Qunari crash the party. He freezes and slowly backs away from the wine watching as they circle the area with wary eyes. His grey eyes taking in everything and also looking for possible escape routes if there are any. The bard holds his lute in one hand and eyes the one who appears to be leading these Qunari with an expression of wary composure.

Bethany had just been smiling and laughing with Minea and Adeline. There had been a bard, and music and dancing and light. How could it all go to shit so damn quickly? There laughing and chatting is interrupted by the proverbial wall of grey that melts into the square, and the screaming and struggling of Anders. She turns so her back isn't to the grey giants anymore, standing between the pair of wardens. A pointed gaze shoots down the twisted streets towards her home, naught but twenty feet from here where her staff is hidden. Nope. There's no getting to it. Not today. Then she's being seized by Adeline who finds her skin unnaturally cold to the touch. No. Get it together Bethany, everyone in your family has sacrificed so much to keep you free, din't blow it all because you're scared of these brutes. Everyone knows what the Qunari do to mages, but they don't know she's a mage yet.

There are few things in this world that Fenris hates as much as Magisters, but Qunari are very, very far up there. There is a rumbling displeasure in his chest, a growl low and threatening. He had only just noticed Anders even being there a moment before he is grabbed, and the warrior snarls. Off of his barrel in an instant, Fenris is closing distance, glowing slightly already, the marks on his flesh lighting up blue. As of yet, he's smart enough to not just jump in and start swinging, but he doesn't stop until he's in easy reach, glaring daggers over Anders' shoulder.

Someone in the crowd mutters, "Uh oh…someone's glowing. That's never a good sign."

The Arishok pauses roughly halfway down the stairs when the Templar addresses him so boldly. There is a moment where he simply stares impassively at Cenn, the entire square quietly waiting on his decision. "Bring him forward." His voice does not raise, but it rings throughout the square all the same. "I will speak with the bas Arvaarad." As one, the ring of warriors surrounding Cenn change their stances, weapons still unsheathed but at parade rest now. With one easy name, the Arishok had given Cenn status among his soldiers. They move when he moves, behaving for all the world like an honor guard - though they conveniently prevent movement in any direction but that which their commander bid the Templar come. The Arishok restarts his slow descent, eyes shifting to fix on the struggling Saarebas and the creature hovering nearby. The glowing markings are not unknown to him and he watches passively for a moment before ordering the Karasaad holding the unbound creature to take him. The soldier obeys - as they will always obey - and heaves the struggling human off his feet. The motion puts dangerous pressure on the shoulder joints in such weak races, but his function can be served with or without the use of his arms, so there is little need for concern. The Arishok is concerned now with the Arvaarad to whom his address is directed. "You are the Kithshok of the bas Arvaarad?"

Cenn looks, still, more than a little confused. But he at least drops out of his position of preparing for an attack as the Qunari change how they stand around him. Though, he does not look like a man who understands these words that are spoken. Coming to stand before the Arishok, he holds his head high and stares up at the Qunari. "Your words are not mine." Cenn answers to the question posed him, "I do not understand your question." So much spine, and more than a little displeasure, in that tone.

Anders can feel the color draining from his face even as the mana is drained from his bloodstream. The sight of Fenris' face twisted into a snarl and headed for him is simultaneously terrifying and a terrible relief. He opens his mouth again to try and shout, to warn him back. With that much lyrium in his veins, Anders is not sure the Qunari would place much difference between Fenris and a regular mage. He would not have his fate shared, but before he can protest, the sound is cut off by a grunt of pain. His feet no longer touch the ground and though he is running out of energy to do anything, he has not run out of fight. He tries to lever himself up enough to be able to kick back at his captor, but the attempt falls short and the drop back down comes with the nauseating 'pop' of a shoulder now well out of place. He does not make a sound with the pain, but his face goes immediately from white to something closer to green, eyes beginning to lose their focus. The skin around his eyes begins to crack, fine veins of blue very similar in hue to Fenris' markings - if quite a bit more subtle. For now.

Maura itches to do something. Anything, except stand here and watch. Her lips press together tightly and she keeps her hands clasped behind her back. No spells. Spells bad. Even a teensy little healing spell… a sigh of frustration hisses right past her lips.

Bethany watches what's happening to Anders with abject horror, so much so that her hand start to tremble. Which, admittedly, does distract her from the focus that would be required to cast magic even if she wanted to. Like the Knight commander wasn't bad enough, now she and Kailen had this to contend with!? Her hands are still ice cold to the touch, and her jaw clenches together to bite back the urge to act, to do anything other than stand here frightened and helpless.

Adeline looks back to Bethany and Minea, "Stay back, stay quiet." She says quickly, before stepping forward and lifting her voice. "No, he is not. Not for that one." She calls, voice ringing with her Starkhaven accent. "That Saarebas is a Grey Warden, and thus is my charge." Oh, this is one very upset woman we're dealing with here. In a dress, without her bow… This is not the best day for this to be happening, but Adeline isn't about to cow to the Qunari about one of her own. Not in a thousand years.

As Anders is lifted, Fenris growls more. There's not a whole lot of restraint he has left, or patience, and he's about to turn his head to glare at the ignorant Templar when Adeline steps forward. That makes him stop and blink. Well, she wasn't wrong. Her boldness gives him leave to look away, and return to growling at the Qunari who holds Anders, skin still flickering with lyrium. They could think him a mage all they wanted, oh how wrong they were.

Bethany's cold hand is taken, fingers settling over the other woman, a nod to Adeline as she moves forward and Minea's drawing Bethany close. "Breath." whispered. "In, and then out. We can't be exposed, or that is it. There's too many right now." A firm squeeze of that cold hand. "Breath with me."

The Arishok turns from Cenn to Adeline, studying her for a long and silent moment. "Of course this creature is not his charge." As if there could possibly be any way that the Kithshok - the General - of the Arvaarad would have such a willful beast unhooded, uncollared, and in public no less. It's ridiculous to even consider. Her claim is considered, measured and then dismissed. "No Qunari has ever joined your Order. We owe you no allegiance." But he is a patient man, a steady man… a shrewd man. "But we wish to deprive no one of their rightful property. When it has been fitted and made safe, we will return it to you - a gift to begin our negotiations in good faith."

The sad part is that he sounds like it really is a gift.

Taril returns from his search for wine and finds… "Oh this is probably bad." Because there are dudes with racks- he likes his dudes without racks- doing things to people he kind of knows. Maybe now would be a good time to get that bow ready. It's a pretty good thing he can do it without being seen USUALLY. Now he's going to take a moment to see how all of this pans out. Seriously cannot leave Maura alone for FIVE MINUTES.

"You would alter my property without my admittance? I think not, Arishok." Adeline answers, seemingly unafraid. "He is as fitted as those he belongs to have need. You will release him, and that I will take as your good faith." Even just speaking like this about Anders makes her deeply uncomfortable, but there is nothing to be done for it. She is a less patient woman than the Arishok is, but she is unarmed, mostly, save a knife on her thigh, and this… This is bad. She looks to Cenn. "Knight Lieutenant," She says, "This mage is, truly, a Grey Warden, and I would see no harm allowed to come to him. You asked me once if there was aide that you could provide us. Now is that time."

This isn't Maura's fault, dammit! She hasn't even cast a spell yet! She reallly, reallllly wants to though. Sure, she might hyperventilate after talking to a Templar, even casually, from a distance (Hi Cenn), but someone just threatened to turn Anders into one of those horrible Saarebas things. She's starting to get upset. This may not end well if continued exertion of willpower fails. She is also silently cheering on Adeline. Gooo Adeline! You tell him!

Cenn blinks, still not entirely caught up on what in the world this Qunari… Arishok? Had called him. Looking over to the Senior Warden, he nods. "I understand." He says simply, but does not yet say more. He is still ready to turn this into a fight if need be, however, blade in hand, shield on his arm. This really had become the worst day ever. Anders is just in the corner of his vision, and his suffering makes Hope twist.

Taril has to weigh this. That guy with the horns is HUGE. As in 'squash an elf's head like a sparrow's egg between his thighs' huge. …not that he'd willingly put his head there, but you get the picture. There's Maura- and that never turns out well in these situations- and then there's Anders, and people NEED that guy. Know what they don't need? An elf who's just hanging here waiting for his clan. "…shit…" So, up he goes, trying to find a good vantage point above the crowd in order to attempt an arrow at the oxman's feet. If there were any time for him to have a some monumentally good luck. Like 'got the one hooker in Lowtown without a horrible itchy disease that makes it fall off' good.

Bethany grips Minea's hand tightly, the briefest of thoughts spared for guilt at how uncomfortable her freezing touch must be. Well, now both Wardens knew her secret and that is strangely comforting. She breaths in and out with Minea slowly, the elf is right, she can't afford to be seen. Not only would it draw the attention of the Qunari, it would out her the Templars, and likely only make things worse for Anders with every 'uncollared' mage the grey beasts discovered.

Fenris rolls his shoulder back. As of yet, no one has taken Anders away, or started to. He'll let the talking continue until there's a chance of losing the mage. Then, all bets were off, he knew all too well what Qunari did to mages. While he was no fan of magic, not in his wildest dreams, Anders, of all people, he didn't deserve that. Probably. Maker, this mage had softened him up quick.

Anders is having The Worst Day Ever(TM). With one arm entirely useless and alternating between throbbing pain and something sharper every time it is jostled, he is out of options. Each step the Karasaad takes is agony and he feels the edges of his vision going grey as the last of his mana is drained and the tangled life-forces beneath it begin to unravel under the persistent pull of the metal still pressed against his forearms and leaving welts that hiss and bubble like pools of particularly sludgy acid. The raised hand of the Arishok is both mercy - for it stops the motion that makes Anders feel at once like vomiting and passing out - and torment, for it simply extends the time he spends under this never-ending rip tide.

It's cold, very cold but her hands can be warmed up after and Minea breaths in tandem with the other woman, willing the both of them to remain in a state of calm or get as close to calm as possible.

When the Grey Warden appeals to the Templar for assistance, the Arishok watches the interplay with sharp eyes and an expression as blank as the stone walls around them. The Templar claims understanding of the Warden's demands, but does not add his voice to hers. Interesting. Very interesting. "Permission is irrelevant. A gift is a gift, and there are too many unchecked Saarebas in this festering sewer. We will reduce that number by one, and thus begin our service to Kirkwall." Only then does he give the Karasaad leave to continue and turn his gaze back toward Cenn. "You will clear a quarter of your city's Lowtown. We will occupy this space for the duration of our stay. We will instigate no violence against your people or your city. Our mission will be unimpeded and at the end of its duration, we will pay for our stay. Any assistance you wish to offer is welcomed, but not required. These are the terms."

Some negotiation.

As Taril climbs out of sight to find his vantage point, there is a mighty wind beginning to whip around the outside of the Qunari ring, the whistling at times sounding very much like the echoing roar of a great beast in livid fury. The devices of these invaders do too much to strengthen the Veil immediately around them; the Huntress cannot physically pierce their barrier. That does not, it would seem, stop her magic. There is a wash of violet fog that blows through the arena and when it clears, there have been some additions. Taril and Adeline now bear bows and quivers of finest ironbark, carved in an ancient and intricate style and humming with some long-forgotten power. Maura has a staff at her back whose head is carved in the very shape of the amulet Taril wears in that pouch around his neck. And Cenn, Cenn the Templar - the antithesis of freedom and magic - bears a sword of wicked elven curve and a shield that bears three dragons in a design that would be very familiar to Taril and Maura.

If there's going to be a fight, it will be a fair one. Or. Well. A fairer one.

Taril finally finds the best perch he can given the short time and, after finding just enough cover to HOPEFULLY not be seen, he knocks an arrow and draws back the string. "Dirthara-ma," he mutters under his breath and looses the arrow that is either aimed at ground or body. Ask him later when he knows what excuses to make. And THEN he can look at the magical shit going down below. He's going to have QUESTIONS after this, Kitty. …providing he's alive and can speak.

Maura inhales a single sharp breath as she can feel the staff suddenly at her back, and then draws the weapon in front of her before she can think of the consequences she may be reaping. It's easy enough for one with a keen eye to pick out those who have suddenly find themselves gifted with weapons like those she and Taril on their recent adventure. And with a few words, the magic of creation reaches out for each of them to wrap them in Heroic Aura and increase their chances against the rather.. large Qunari. Let's hope she can keep out of the way of the big bastards once they realize the direction that spell came from.

"They Grey Wardens refuse your gift, Arishok, and ask that no further of the sort be offered." Adeline says, sounding very, very unhappy. She's about to reach for the blade at her thigh when the violet fog rushes over the square, and she feels the familiar weight of a bow upon her back. What in the ever loving… Maker… What? It doesn't matter, she reaches for the weapon, drawing it, finding Minea's eyes and nodding. It was go time. No way in hell was she letting the Qunari take Anders. Never going to happen. There's a look to Bethany too, a moment of consideration, and a small nod that says that if she wishes to help, she will appreciate it. It's not as though she's never seen the girl fight before. It's then she knocks an arrow, aims for the Qunari holding Anders. "Release him, Arishok, before this becomes a bloodbath, I have no want to fight you."

Well, that was unexpected. "Maker's breath." Bethany mutters quietly at the transformation which takes place before them, eyes quickly fixing on Maura's new staff. That would have been convenient. She turns to Minea and speaks in a low voice. "What do we do if this turns into a fight?" She asks, and from the look on her face she has clearly had enough of standing idly by. "If we let them take that warden away it'll be open season on all the mages in Kirkwall, apostate, warden and Circle alike." She levies a glare in the direction of the Arishok. "Maker, we can't let them do this!" Carver and Kailen were going to be so mad.

For all that Cenn has been trying to follow this, he honestly only has the vaguest idea of what in the world is going on. "Arishok…" Cenn tries, not sure how the word feels on his tongue, "I have not the authority to grant you any of your demands. Nor accept any of your good will. This is not the place to seek that audience. Let this end here, I can arrange the meeting you desire." Cenn says, though he doesn't really know if he can, but damnit, he's going to try. The arrival of magical weapons, that makes him blink, but this day has just gotten so much worse so quickly, and so much weirder, that he doesn't have time to think about it. At Adeline's threat, Cenn sighs, but does not speak against her will. This is a mess waiting to happen, and the Templar does not like it.

"We hold, till she tells us to run." A subtle nod is returned to Adeline, the mage Warden at the ready, nostrils flaring. "Till then, let loose when she tells us to. Don't let them take him." Her fingers tighten on Bethany's and then lets that hand go. Her own fingers itching to reach for her staff in a moments notice.

Fenris, to his credit, is just growling. Still. Just. Growling. Maker, these people could talk forever. It's not like the Qunari were going to listen. They never listened, damn their fool extremism. And when Fenris is saying that, you know it's bad. The sound of an arrow overhead makes the elf look up, and he curses. And keeps cursing, readjusting his hold on his blade.

Though the force employed by the Qunari to maintain the static immutability of this world is strong, there is some leftover grace in the unnatural fog that is still hovering on the ground around their ankles. Taril, Cenn and Adeline receive a wash of that Hero's Aura that feels rather a bit like a pleasant jolt of coffee. With teeth. Faster, stronger, more agile - it will be a welcome boost against the Qunari, if it comes to that. Which… looks like it just got a whole hell of a lot more likely.

The whistle of Taril's arrow slicing through the air is like a scream in the silence. It makes its mark, sinking deep into the flesh of the Arishok's upper arm. Instantly there are twenty bows up and nocking, arrows aimed at Taril about to be unleashed. And though he does not stop the reaction of his men, the Arishok looks almost… placid. This will be an interesting experiment indeed.

Taril has their attention! Wait. He has their attention. "Well, shit." He ducks back down, using the crates as cover in order to get off another shot. "Bellanaris Din'an Heem!" Another arrow follows. If you're going to be a bear, be a grizzly- as the saying goes. If that whole 'being gone without telling anyone' thing doesn't get him in trouble with the Keeper, this is certainly going to do it. If he lives. Maybe he should aim for the big guy's face? For now he's merely focusing on hitting one of the Qunari when possible.


Adeline was going to have words with that elf when this was over. Assuming that those twenty arches don't fill him full of enough holes that there was nothing else to have words with. This day… Maker, this day. But Taril isn't her problem, Taril isn't a Warden, she's not here to protect Taril, so her arrow stays trained where it was. The Dalish fool would have to get himself out of this mess. At least, until the Arishok got other ideas.

At this point, Anders is beyond sensibility - and probably for the best, to be honest. Saves him from all the heart attacks he'd otherwise be having. But the draining of the bracers pressed against his bare flesh had begun to pull at his and Justice's life force minutes ago and despite the chaos erupting around them, the Karaasad is not stopping his steady trek up the stairs. His orders have already been given.

Oh, Fenris is officially done now that the Karaasad has begun moving again. Swift and deadly he closes distance with the Qunari, and like hell is he letting anyone stop him. But it's a special kind of finesse that comes with striking at someone carrying another person who you don't want to harm. Especially with a blade his size. It's not his temper that gets him this way, though. Reasoning with the Qunari didn't work, and he's not about to let them walk off with… Are we going with friends? Maybe that was the term. Who fucking cared right now, there were better things to worry about. Like, you know, driving a blade into the Qunari's side, or trying to.

Maura gawks up at Taril; she can't help it. Shit dude, ALL their archers want to put a hole in them. "I suggest ducking, not firing another arrrooooow." she mumbles under her breath, already pulling from her reservoir of mana again to give the elven be-weaponed people whatever edge she can before she has to defend herself from.. well, being captured or sliced and diced. This time, to provide Haste. Use it to get outta the way, adopted bro. Seriously.

As for those arrows - Taril MIGHT have managed to duck them all just in time. Things looked pretty good for the professional Dalish Pain in the Ass… And then he shot again.

The good news is that Taril's arrow takes out one of the Qunari archers in the throat. The bad news is that one of those arrows winging in his direction actually manages to get him. Right in the left side of his butt.

Taril has a huge pain in the ass and it's NOT Maura. At least he took one of them out? Things could be worse here! He takes a moment to snap off the shaft of that arrow and takes in a deep breath before yelling. "Who taught you to shoot?" Because he has a sore ass, damnit. Insults make him feel better. For now he's going to push one of those crates juuuuust enough to get an arrow through AND to see how many he has to go through before he can go soak his ass.

Bethany 's head darts around, checking to see just who might catch her. But really, the shit has hit the fan and there's no turning back at this point. She lifts her hand willing the markings for Glyph of Paralysis to form under the Karaasad's feet. Hopefully it's less flashy, and has a better chance of not accidentally harming Anders.

With his archers engaged in an aerial chess match against the tiny pest and the Lyrium Ghost raging after the soldier holding the mage, the Arishok - seemingly ignorant of the arrow sticking out of his own bicep - folds his arms over his chest and nods once to one of the Sten. The Qunari nods back, stepping from his place in the Arishok's retinue and drawing forth a (frankly enormous) greataxe from its sheath on his back. It's toward Cenn this monster advances, though he gives the Templar the strange dignity of a sharp salute before charging forward to take a swing at all that armor. Cenn, with no choice left but to defend himself, engages with full force. That shield comes up under the Sten's weapon and the blow is blocked, but at the cost of a fairly severe jarring to his shield arm. Even so, the Templar is not slowed and the wickedly curved sword lashes out to bite a wound against the meaty tendons of his opponent's thigh.

As for the Karasaad, his mind is entirely on his duty. His commander may know some of what the elf racing up behind him can do, but the simple footsoldier does not. The sword through his side elicits a roar of pain and fury, causing him to drop the limp mage to the stairs like a sack of flour. He twists to try and lash back, but finds himself frozen, the ground lit with unnatural color beneath his feet. It is this position that lines up Adeline's perfect shot and the arrow sings true right through the eye socket and back into the brain. The Qunari is dead on impact, which is good, but it also means the spell has nothing left to act on and dissipates, which is… not so great. Because now there's about 600lbs of Qunari about to crash like a felled tree, crumpling directly onto the mage he'd only just now dropped. Another of the Sten steps forward to engage Fenris in combat directly, but that's not actually the most worrying part.

No, the most worrying moment comes just a heartbeat later, when the Arishok gives some other unseen signal to his forces and the wall of bodies at the top of the stairs peel back to reveal a line of Qunari bound in chains and hooded until they cannot see the world around them. These are the true Saarebas and at each head stands the Arvaarad that is its handler. This is the fate of mages under the Qun. They are nothing more than weapons - treated with less tenderness than even their mounts - but they are, without a doubt, deadly weapons.

Taril has so many targets he could go for, but the worrisome ones? Those would be the things they just brought out to play. Screw the archers, it's time to go for those 'chatty' dudes with the magic. He takes aim, and lets the arrow loose. "Ma ghilana mir din'an," he mutters, because he's pretty sure he's gonna die here. So of course he's just going to keep shooting from behind his cover for as long as he can.

"The Saarebas" Minea directs Bethany, a flick of a finger in their direction as they are revealed. "Paralyze them, if you can." Minea's grabbing her staff from where it sits at her back, doing much the same as Bethany had and aimed under the feet of the middle most Qunari mage.

This Maker forsaken city just would not give Fenris a break. The death of the Qunari is, of course, what he was going for, but he winces as it crashes down onto Anders. He has no time to try and push the beast off, though, as he's being engaged by another. A stream of curses comes from the elf as he trades blow for blow, putting his efforts into holding this spot. While the Qunari atop Anders is not a good thing, by any stretch, it, at least, might work as a shield to a stray arrow or a knocked sword blow. Silver linings, right? But Fenris doesn't have time for this, he doesn't have time to let Anders be slowly crushed under a Qunari and he passes his hand into the fade, reaching toward the Sten's chest, though it leaves him woefully open in a number of places.

Adeline curses, falling back toward Minea and Bethany the minute the Saarebas arrive. Just in time to hear Minea's instruction. "And keep an open line for our Templar, if you can, I don't think we have much else that will put them down before they can do the same to us." She says back to the two mages. But it is not on the Qunari mages she focuses, but rather, at helping said Templar fell his particular foe at the moment. She's gained range, and she whistles sharp, hoping her call will find Sterling perched farther away upon The Hanged Man's roof.

"Oh shit." That's Maura, when the Saarebas arrive. So much for trying to stay quiet, helping in the background. Gathering up the pieces of her courage, her sudden whispering is probably a plea to the Maker for this spell to work well without levelling half of Kirkwall with it. Or innocent bystanders. But the Saarebas should be far enough away, right? That's right. Of course, she's so focused on exactly where she wants this spell to land that she's not paying attention to much else. But, with a large thrust of magic, she hurls a Telekinetic Burst at the Qunari mage's and their handlers, hoping to send them sprawling and momentarily out of the way until their Templar can maybe, y'know, get a breather and try to help deal with them.

Damn it, damn it, damn it. How in the world was he going to explain this to Meredith? What a bloody mess. Cenn doesn't begin swearing as others on the field, though. No, his methods are somewhat different. No, he begins speaking the chant, quietly, just loud enough for himself. Rhythmic and methodical and the thing that gives his mind focus, and still his heart from rushing blood through his ears. Being deafened by his own body would not do in a fight like this. So much magic, there is so much more magic than he anticipated happening, and he can feel it, but honestly, he ought not to be surprised. There were bigger problems. Like taking down this Sten so he can deal with the line of mages that has just arrived.

Fuck subtle, apparently. Bethany was either going to be a mage or in the Grey Wardens before today was over. Carver and Kailen were gonna be SO MAD. With the Saarebas bearing down and, as far as she knows, only her and Minea to paralyze them, Bethany chooses her instincts over instructions. A few seconds of breathing room would be nice as Bethany's arm swings out in an arch in front of the Qunari mages, casting Cone of Cold

The Sten engaging Fenris is skilled - one does not rise to such rank in the Antaam without at least that - and he meets Fenris with the kind of respectful caution the Karasaad did not have time for. Blow after blow is exchanged, the ringing metal creating a deafening rhythm to the chaos. He is not, however, prepared for the hand to reach inside his chest. With the recognition of his own death, the warrior does not waste his final moments and instead uses them to bring the pommel of his sword down //hard against Fenris' back in the general area of his left kidney.

Taril's targets are… Well, the masks bounce arrows off like they're toys, but he does manage to drop two of the Arvaarad. Immediately, the Saarebas attached to them go limp, sinking to their knees with the most mournful keening sound as the Arvaarad next to them step in and drive small blades - almost ceremonial in appearance - right into their hearts before resuming control of their own beasts. Two more Saarebas fall victim to paralysis, caught in Minea's well-aimed glyph. But the three that remain… A line of the Karaasad fall in front of them as they weave the magic called for by their handlers. There is a crackle in the air, the smell of smoke and char and heat as the very air sizzles with the power being called upon. The fabric of reality is being twisted in a very big way and every mage in the square can feel the tug: Inferno has a fairly large radius of disaster when cast by one mage, let alone when cast in concert by three.

Thank the Maker for small miracles! Maura's Burst - augmented perhaps by the combination of her gifted staff and the way the violet mist seems to cling to everything around it - manages to knock back the entire line of Arvaarad into the Saarebas. It disrupts the creation of the spell, but that's an awful lot of energy called into the area that now has no direction. It makes the air crackle. It brings the taste of ozone to the tongue and makes hair stand on end. It is a dangerous knife's edge, but one that has not broken. Yet.

As for the Sten facing Cenn, (don't say that five times fast) he fights with more cunning than one might expect from a waraxe-wielding behemoth, engaging the warrior only in those blows he can turn to his own advantage. Undistracted by the battle's outcome, he has pristine focus. Unfortunately, that proves to be his undoing. A blue-fletched arrow sticks in his thigh and it makes him stop and look at the offending item with something like suspicion. He'd seen this archer nail an eye shot at twice this distance, but this arrow is only in his… thigh? He is right to be suspicious. Beaks and talons are murder on the eyes and with such a distraction he is almost entirely helpless.

Taril has learned a lesson! Go for the handlers. He's in pain, but at least he can stay focused. Maura is casting spells, but he can think about that later. The ground is still under their feet, after all. He'll just keep telling himself that he can pass out once he's out of arrows. At which point, he'll tell himself something different.

Maura lets out a slow breath, watching the combination of spell and circumstance buy them more time. She makes sure to note each of her fellow mage's, as she pauses in her casting. The buildup of energy in the air suggests it might be a weeeeeeee bit of a bad idea to go casting something else at them just yet. And so she pulls back looking for cover, trying to get a vantage point where she can see Anders and try to Heal the man a little. And then it will be on to Taril, and Adeline, and Cenn. Anyone she sees who needs the boost. She is going to be one exhausted apostate when this is all over.

Pulling back his arm, gauntlet covered in dark red gore, Fenris cries out with the strike to his back, cursing as he takes a knee involuntarily. Below kidneys are hips, and the downward force of the strike, he doesn't really want to think about the awful cracking feeling that had reverberated down his lower half. Gritting his teeth, Fenris pulls himself to his feet again. Glancing around the battlefield, he turns to the fallen Qunari atop Anders. Pain in his back and hip be damned, he was going to push the damned thing off if it killed him. "You are not permitted to die on me, mage." He mutters through the effort and the pain, likely only loud enough for Anders to hear, if he were conscious.

Spells like the Cone can often go… awry. When they go right, however, they can be immensely useful. Of the Karaasad who did not end up knocked over and paralyzed on top of a pile of Very Distressed Saarebas, there is now only one who is not a horncicle. He's trying to climb his way out, but paralyzed bodies are a LOT of dead weight and the other ones are just dang slippery.

Minea can feel it too, looking around her in the air as if she could see it. She opts instead to protect, at least those around her, digging her feet in to the ground and attempt to erect a shield around at least her and Bethany. In case something nasty this way comes.

Thank the Maker for well timed birds. With the Qunari distracted, Cenn goes for chest, twisting his blade with a nasty precision that he does not like to use often. He does not pause to see the Qunari fall, though, stepping back and turning, taking in the field. Maker, that was… A lot of Qunari. A lot of unmoving Qunari, for the most part. What was the Arishok playing at? He doesn't have time for those kinds of questions, though. The mages may be quiet for now, but they will not stay that way. Crossing the field to those that remain, he can feel the crackling left over magical energy in the air, and still speaking the Chant quietly, he focuses to clear it away, and keep magic at bay around him. Likely the mages in the square will get itchy, but he's tried to put enough distance between him and them, despite this putting him in… Well… It couldn't be called advantageous, his positioning, at least not in his favor.

Adeline recalls Sterling with a whistle, him landing firmly upon her shoulder. There were too many arrows flying for her to be comfortable with his being in the sky too long. With Minea putting up her barrier, Adeline drops to her knee. Half of the arrows remaining in her quiver are carefully weaved between fingers, and she pulls back, firing a rain of arrows down into the group of archers. There's a glare shot to the Arishok, because she gets the uneasy feeling there is more to this, but she can only hold ground. They're surrounded, this has turned into a fight she never expected, and all she can do is fight, and hope.

Bethany had intended to blast the scrambling karsaraad, but Cenn is advancing in the direction she would have to cast. That just won't do. Not that she has any doubt that the Templar has seen her performing magic and…. oh shit. Sweet Andraste the circle sounded almost appealing in the wake of what the Arishok had promised for Anders, and if he clearly didn't respect the Grey Wardens or the methods of the Templars then where was any mage in Kirkwall safe? The fear twists it's gnarled fingers around Bethany's heart, leaving her feeling like she's been punched straight in the gut. The crackle of ambient magic in the air certainly doesn't help her stress either. The one silver lining she has is that at least if suspicion was levied on her there's a chance her brother would be overlooked.

Maura's healing is well-intentioned, but timing and proximity to a Templar doing his best to cleanse an area of the arcane equivalent of gaatlok mean that even the best of intentions fizzle out on their way to the Darktown Healer. Who is currently not quite so squished as before. Never let anyone say that elves were incurably weak; despite the pain and fairly extensive damage travelling down that left leg, Fenris is, after a few tries, able to clear the ridiculously massive Qunari from overtop his mage. Said mage is not quite in or out of consciousness, delirious and clinging on to life with claws and fangs and everything he's got. Let no one say the idiot mage isn't stubborn, either. He does not look good, but he's not dead yet. If only there weren't two Karaasad advancing on the downed Fenris.

Minea's shield glows bright and reassuring, but the crackling in the air is rapidly dissipating with a Templar's dedicated efforts. See what happens when we work together, children? Cenn's efforts are nigh miraculous for a single Templar; though the effort is incredibly draining, the danger of Kirkwall Crater is finally at bay once more. The last of the un-circled Sten steps forward to engage him, armed in a similar fashion with sword and shield. Adeline's rain of death is at least marginally successful, dropping one archer immediately and wounding another in the shoulder, but the numbers remaining seem disheartening, almost… overwhelming.

However, in the instant before another round could begin (in the very seconds before Cenn and his passenger were going to start experiencing some technical difficulties) the Arishok yanks the arrow out of his arm - calm as you please - and drops it to the ground like so much garbage before that same arm lifts in silent signal. As one, all Qunari opponents withdraw, retreating back to the sidelines.

Except, perhaps notably, the two Karaasad near Fenris. They don't attack, but neither do they lower their weapons or step back the way the others do. One thing for certain that can be said about the Qunari; when they deem something to be a threat, they take it absolutely serious.

Adeline had been preparing to bring down another rain of arrows when the Arishok recalls his forces. She takes a deep breath, rises from her kneeling position, and knocks a single arrow, sharp and marked with blue fletching. Whoever the hell she puts that into is going to get a face full of well trained, pissed off bird. For now, though, she just holds, waiting, seeing what the fall out is about to be.

Cenn knew what he was wading into. He knew that being a lone Templar, and wading in as he did, he was going to have a lot of forces breathing down his neck, baring down on him in likely more than he would have been able to throw off, but he had to try. So when the Arishok calls a stop, the Templar gives a very small, almost silent, sigh of relief. There's no easing of his posture, no dropping of his weapon, but he's not staring down his own likely immediate death, and that is something to give quiet thanks for. Which he does, praying silently to himself.

Minea's not dropping the shield, her focus remaining upon it and those behind and within it as her finger tighten on her staff that she has dug the very bottom into the ground between her feet. It's not a friendly look she gives the Qunari, it's nt a fearful one either at the moment.

"Venhedis, mage, get up." Fenris says down to Anders, though he knows the chances of that order being followed are very, very slim. He bends to start to haul Anders upward when he hears the movement behind him. He's gotten an arm around Anders, skin to his skin, and he works hard to ignore the hum caused by that. With his being closed on, however, he lets Anders' go, gently as he can manage with his haste and his own injury, and turns to face the coming Qunari. There's a snarl directed at them, but that is when the fight is called to a stop. Before him, they stop engaging, and Fenris does something possibly odd. He places his sword upon his back, and focuses the energy of the lyrium down into his wrists and hands. If they get any ideas, they're going to have his hands in their chests, even if they kill him in the process, though he trusts in his skills enough to avoid that… Mostly.

Bethany comes to an at least aware neutral. Her fingers are splayed out, and while there isn't mana coalesced in them there could easily be very quickly. Her heart still thunders in her chest, the creeping fear of the trap she's stepped straight into is there, but at least imminent death isn't.

The Arishok surveys the square - the hordes of cowering civilians, the few brave souls who took up arms with no training against an impossible force who now lay dead or dying, the fighters who held their own against his own officers in honest combat. The Arishok looks out over everything and sees that it is… not good, but perhaps worth saving from itself. "You." He levels Cenn with his cold, calculating stare. "You will take us to the one who is your Kithshok bas Arvaarad." No consideration at all for the fact that the Templar plainly has no understanding of Qunari terminology. None. "The bas Saarebas will be leashed in time. There is strength here - there is substance that can be worthy. We will protect it. We do not fail." And with that he turns and begins the trek back up the stairs as all of his soldiers fall into seamless marching columns to follow. "Let the Ghost keep his pet," he remarks to the two Karaasad as he passes them by, something halfway between pity and amusement in his tone. "He knows to chain it well enough." Irony. It's irony in his tone. The Lyrium Ghost's reputation seems to have left Seheron. Everyone else is left well enough alone, no longer important enough to consider now that they have given him what he wanted from them.

"Find me that elf." Except, apparently, Taril. Oops.

Adeline looks over at Cenn. "He means your Knight Commander, Templar." She says, finally translating for the man. Turning to Minea and Bethany, she gives them both a concerned look. "Are you well?" She asks, though her readied stance does not cease.

Cenn is just glad that this, for now, is over. He's about to protest, still having no idea what in the world the Arishok means. Then, though, the Warden offers an explanation, and he gives her a nod of thanks. He hesitates, but then follows. Maybe, just maybe, if he went along with the Arishok he could stop this for being further exacerbated. Maybe it could end here.

"Never touched us" Minea doesn't drop the shield, no intention to until the Qunari are no longer present. She looks over to Bethany, reaching over with one hand that pares away from her staff to squeeze the other woman's hand. "Breathe. You did good. I'm impressed."

Of course it has. Of course these Qunari know of him. Fenris tenses as the Qunari pass, growls quietly, but he can't keep up this fight. His hip is more than likely broken, if not a number of other things, and he's not going to be able to kill them all. A number, likely, but he does not feel like dying this day. No, this day, he just wanted to stop them from taking Anders. As they continue up the stairs, followed by the Templar, the warrior can't keep himself up, and drops to the ground, kneeling beside Anders and trying once more, mostly fruitlessly, to get the mage up.

Bethany offers Minea a somewhat forced smile, "It's not my first fight." She says, being more proficient at magical combat than she cares to admit. Bethany is shaken, not by the fighting but by the insidiousness of the Arishok's words. But, at least the Templar is walking away. "I'm fine. Or at least, I'll be better shortly." Bethany says louder so Adeline can hear her.

Life is a little hazy around the edges right now for Anders. The skin up both inner forearms is mangled and blistered - burned down into the subcutaneous fat reserves (of which there are not much) and deeper muscular fascia. Such devices were designed with Qunari physiology in mind, not smaller, daintier humans. And though the attempts to save his sorry hide came in time, there was enough time spent under that blasted drain to suck away portions of his life - of Justice's life. The brief skin-to-skin contact was a jolt of awareness that came just before it was lost, his surroundings going hazy again as events came to a close. With Fenris' renewed efforts to get him up comes more skin-to-skin contact, more of that not-unpleasant jolting awareness. Being aware, though, that sucks. That sucks worse than an arrow in his hip. Honeyed eyes aren't focusing very well, but at least they're… mostly open? And his skin has no color, but has lost most of that waxy green tinge. Not as bad as it could be, then, but definitely not great.

And with the worst of it over, the crowds begin to rise and resurge. There is weeping over dead loved ones and the shaking murmurs of mothers trying to reassure their frightened babes - the low rumble of shock as it filters through the Kirkwallers. The lighthearted spirit of the earlier celebrations is long gone. It would seem that Lowtown is destined to exist in permanent despair.

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