The Anchor sits like a brand, a wrong thing; it's too deep to be a tattoo and too strange to just be a scar.
It used to rub her the wrong way. All green and glowy, how when they came upon rips--Rifts, or whatever--Adaar would just reach out and pull it inside. Like she was corralling yarn back into a ball, or reeling in fish and the like, light vanishing deep inside the mark and crackling in her veins so bright Sera could see them pulsing under dark and grey skin. No amount of tall, dark, and handsome outside could banish the memory, and for minutes yet Sera would keep her distance. It was magic, pure and simple, and while it wasn't as unpredictable as regular mage-y bullshit, it was still magic and it was still dangerous.
If her behavior then had bothered Adaar in the field, she'd never made mention of it. And Sera had coerced herself into forgetting it, eventually. It was easy; Dagna said it reminded her of a key, locking down those open doors. Thinking about it like that made things easier, really. Adaar wasn't willy-nilly fingerfucking the fabric between dreams and reality, not like baldy, she was just fixing it. Locking it up to keep it from hurting anyone else, or maybe just to spit in Coryphishit's face. Either way, it was good and the proper way of things; fact.
Nowadays, the Anchor doesn't really bother her. Not in the bloody rot magic, avoid it way, at least. In moments alone, up in Adaar's quarters where it's just them and a fire roaring--windows opened or cracked to let Sera smell the cold mountain breeze-- she pets her fingers over the mark and thinks, you could take her away one day. The Anchor's stable now, but Sera knows that once upon a time it spread, growing and tearing through muscle and sinew, carving its way to Adaar's heart to kill her.
Added to that, it looks like it hurts even now. Sera doesn't like things hurting Adaar, or at least things she can't put an arrow in.
"Looking at it again?" A sleepy murmur against the crown of her head, Adaar's voice raspy from the hours before. "I can't imagine it's changed any since the last time you gave it a glance over."
"Shut it." Sera hums it, wriggling against Adaar until she's pressed against her side. The sweat's cooled, now, except at the places where they meet; her skin gets warm and sticky and seals together against the Qunari's, dark brown and steel grey. "It's not hurtin' anything, is it? No."
A pause as Sera's fingers twitch against Adaar's wrist.
"No," Adaar answers quickly. "It's not. I'm just a little amused, is all."
Sera ignores her, settles her head against a broad shoulder, and touches. The Anchor starts at Adaar's heart line in her palm, an ugly, sick discoloration of skin. It looks a bit like a burn, raw and peeling and every now and then Sera thinks she sees a flash, muted, like lightning in a storm. The mark itself trails down her hand, stopping just under wrist like one of the tears in Sera's trousers. It's an ugly thing, really. It's got no business being on her Inky, but Sera guesses she'll deal with it.
The thought hits her again, clearer. You could take her away. The Anchor could rip itself open, swallow Adaar up in a flare of green fire and twisted magics and Sera would be powerless to stop it. She'd have no way to avenge her, either, because what the hell can arrows do against witchery business? She goes still, a bitter taste in her mouth as she slides up her questing fingers, lays her hand palm to palm against the Inquisitor's.
Adaar's fingers don't even hesitate to close around her own. Her hand dwarfs Sera's, not quite as big as Bull's monstrous fists but still a contrast. Nothing dainty about her hands at all; Sera feels the callouses and scars against the back of her hand, the old blisters from handling her shield. Maybe it's stupid to feel all soft and squishy and whatever, but when it's just them she knows that, hell, at least she isn't alone in it.
"You alright?" Adaar asks it softly, and rubs a thumb over her knuckles. The Anchor feels weird and warm and wrong against Sera's palm.
You could take her away.
Desperate hunger blooms under her ribs like Deathroot, all gnarled and twisting branches turning her stomach. She rolls, hissing at the brief flare of pain along her side, throws a leg over Adaar's waist. In the burst of movement she has to let go of Adaar's hand and her own feels cold, empty; she hates it. She really, really hates it. Hates that she can see her things scattered and stuffed alongside Adaar's; knick-knacks and old bow grips, flasks of discarded potions, pillows and silky things she lifted from her own room at the tavern.
She hates that she loves it, hates that this fragile thing could all end because of Andraste, of an Anchor, of some nug-humping, ugly frigging magister that fancies himself a god.
Adaar stares up at her for a moment, shocked and confused to hell and back--no surprise, Sera isn't quite sure what she's doing either--before she smiles cheekily, blows a strand of white out of her eyes. "Again?"
"What, like you'll turn me down?"
Adaar stares hard at her, suddenly serious as she raises that cursed, marked palm up, cups her cheek like Sera will break if she doesn't do it careful, slow. It's daunting to look in those green eyes--green like the Fade, like the Anchor, come to think--but Sera juts her chin and waits and dammit, was it obvious? The fear of, what, death? Dying, that kind of thing? It's not--death she's afraid of, not really, because everyone dies but the possibility that she doesn't have a lot of time, that they don't have a lot of time--
"I'd never turn you down," Adaar says, swipes the calloused pad of her thumb against the apple of Sera's cheek. "Kadan." A Qunari word that had slipped out once and, now that she knows its meaning ("where the heart lies") slips out when Adaar knows she's feeling vulnerable.
"Honey tongue," Sera chokes out, scoots a little higher so she can lean down kiss her, hands resting on those big shoulders. Maybe she kisses a little too hard, too fast; Sera's teeth dig into Adaar's bottom lip and she swallows down the soft noise, kisses her again and again--
Adaar's other hand moves then, clamping on her hip and holding her there while the other slides up to tangle in her hair, cups the back of her head. The hot press of tongue makes her gasp, makes her groan. The angle isn't all that great, and there's a crick starting in her neck, but like hell is she letting that stand in the way of this. Adaar's a bangin' kisser and Sera could (probably has, honestly) spend hours just kissing her.
"What do you want this time," the Inquisitor mumbles against the corner of her mouth, dark lips peppering against the line of her jaw until sharper-than-average teeth dig and graze against her pulse. The slow, hot suction that follows blanks her brain to white for a moment, and Sera stutters uselessly. Adaar pulls back, laughs without malice, and asks her again.
She huffs, makes her own mark against Adaar's neck. Wraps a hand around one curling horn for good measure, squeezes and takes pride it the short growl that rolls out of her chest, the near bruising grip that forms on her hip. Sera doesn't answer her at first; usually she just goes down until Adaar shouts herself hoarse, then grabs those elegant horns and steers her to do the same. Or rides her face, whichever, she isn't picky. But she lets go of Adaar's horn, props back up on her knees and grabs the hand from the back of her head, panting.
"Give it--give it here give me that--"
She's still slick as sin from before, so at least they have that going for them. Sera doesn't try to do quick, messy, emotional, but she can't help herself here. Adaar's eyes widen when she tugs her hand between her legs, sawing out a breath from between her teeth.
"Y-you can go in, this time." The jump, the stammer is only because the heel of Adaar's palm slides nice and easy against her clit and it's great, honestly. She can feel the subtle, raised ridges of the Anchor against her core and that's kind of frigging terrifying, yeah.
The oncoming penetration, well, that's a maybe. It's never really been her thing, but she trusts Inky and this is a prime fuck you to everyone else who ever wanted to take Adaar away. The Inquisitor doesn't move her hand for a bit, stunned--probably because a few short weeks ago Sera wouldn't go near it and now she's basically humping it--before swallowing tightly. The heat Sera sees there is enough to make her shiver, sparking her own, and the ego trip she gets when that intense gaze rakes her body is enough to make her jog her hips.
Woof. Nothing more sexy than a besotted Inquisitor; especially one who looks at Sera's skinny body like it's a feast and she's the one starving. Fact.
"Just let me--" Adaar props herself up on an elbow, pulls her hand back just enough to replace the heel of her palm with a thumb, dragging two fingers through the wetness between Sera's thighs. The pressure against the bud makes her sigh out a curse or four, and when the pressure turns to slow, methodical circles she wants to melt. A whine catches in her throat, escapes somehow in a shrill giggle, a smile curling the corners of her mouth--
"There," Adaar whispers with a grin. "There's that smile. I was worried, for a moment." She rubs a figure-eight pattern into her skin and Sera gasps. "Are you sure? I've--we've never--"
"I'm sure, I-I'm sure--" Sera gnashes her teeth. "Please, Adaar."
It's worth everything to hear the Qunari suck in a breath, shudder. She's still achingly gentle when the tip of her middle finger dips in, just a touch, just to get her used to it. It's--big. Bigger than her own, definitely. Adaar's finger feels like almost two of her own, and Sera thinks aw shite at the the thought of taking it in. Adaar reads her face, goes back to teasing and keeping that damning slip and slide around her clit. She grunts in reply, raises her hands to paw and knead her own tits just to see Adaar's reaction.
A bitten lip, a sudden stillness, and that rumbly-growl again. Woof.
This time, when Adaar tries her finger there's no discomfort. Maybe a foreign stretch as it sinks in to the second knuckle, but it's not bad, not necessarily. Adaar rocks her finger in all the way, and oh yeah it's, a bit bigger and Sera can feel the heat of the Inquisitor's mark against her sensitive flesh again.
"Ah, fuck," Adaar breathes. "Sera, Sera--"
Sera drops her hands from her chest, rests them against the solid wall of Adaar's abs. They twitch and flex beneath her touch and that finger moves, dragging out nice and slow to let her get used to it. This time she does whine, low in her throat, curls her nails against ridges of muscle and pants. Doesn't help that Adaar's thumb keeps swirling around her clit, never really letting her take just the finger. Her thighs tremble, burn with the strain, and she flops on Adaar's chest and clumsily mouths at a breast, sliding her hands up her ribs.
Adaar curses when she laps at a dusky nipple, inhales sharply when she takes it in her mouth and pulls, careful of her teeth. The Qunari curls her finger on the next withdrawl in retaliation and shite oh shite oh yes --
"Again, frig, ah, do that again--"
What would Andraste think now, knowing that her Herald's using that special Fade fixing hand for this? That Adaar calls her kadan, that Adaar has whispered that it's you and me, against it all and meant it? Andraste, Sera thinks in a daze as Adaar curls her fingers, runs her other hand through Sera's hair, can't have her back. The Anchor can't have her at all. Finders friggin' keepers.
Sera does not share.