Alistair paced in the anteroom off the throne room. He was nervous and none too pleased with the duty he had to perform today.
He was getting married.
To a complete stranger.
The entire affair had been arranged by Eamon, who set it upon himself to find a suitable wife and potential mother to produce that all-important Theirin heir. Alistair wasn’t even allowed to meet with the potential brides, Eamon taking it upon himself to meet and assess the ladies himself. Eamon had been afraid that Alistair’s natural ability to trip over his own tongue may jeopardize the negotiations.
Alistair was convinced that Eamon’s choice of bride for him would be perfectly horrid. She’d have to have good, wide hips for childbearing, and an intellectual mind to help Alistair rule, seeing as how reluctant Alistair himself was at doing so. Her looks and personality wouldn’t matter to Eamon, no matter how much they mattered to Alistair.
Zevran walked in then and grabbed Alistair by the shoulders. “Take a deep breath, querido. It won’t be so bad, you’ll see.”
“Zev! I was afraid you weren’t going to come,” Alistair sighed in relief. “I really don’t want to do this, Love.”
“Hush now. We’ve discussed this all at length and you know you must do your duty for the good of Ferelden,” Zevran said soothingly. “It would not do for the King not to produce an heir, yes?”
“I’d still rather marry you, Zev,” Alistair said softly, caressing the elf’s face with one of his large Ferelden hands.
“I know, mi amor,” Zevran nodded. “But you know why this can never be, so let us not dwell, yes?”
Alistair took a deep breath and nodded. The music cue for Alistair to step out to the throne room began. Before straightening up and marching himself to his matrimonial doom, he pulled Zevran into a tight embrace and kissed the elf deeply. “Thanks for being here today, Love.”
Then Alistair straightened himself to his full height, squared his shoulders and walked stiffly out into the throne room, positioning himself near the Revered Mother of the Denerim Chantry. She gave him a withering stare, and Alistair realized that she probably had a full view of his impassioned embrace with Zevran moments before. Alistair shrugged and took in a deep breath, resigned to his fate.
Once Alistair was in place the music changed, cuing the procession of dignitaries before finally the bride stepped into view. Kaiya was her name, he remembered. Eldest daughter of one of the smaller Arldoms in Ferelden. She was escorted by a man Alistair assumed was her father. He appeared handsome and dignified, with grey sprinkled throughout his dark hair. “Well at least the father’s good looking,” Alistair thought to himself. “Maker, please let her be pretty.”
The formal hand-off from father to groom went smoothly, Alistair remembering the lines he’d been rehearsing all week. There she was, next to him now, enshrouded in a diaphanous veil, obscuring her features. Her form was at least pleasing, not too thin, not too thick, Alistair appraised as his eyes raked over his bride.
The ceremony seemed to go on forever and Alistair tried his very best to keep from fidgeting. “Kings do not fidget,” he kept reminding himself as his eyes kept wandering over towards the antechamber where Zevran stood, watching his lover marry another.
Finally the Revered Mother got to the bit where Alistair had to recite his vows, and place the ring onto his bride’s finger. He got through it mostly, without too many stutters. He smiled bashfully and blushed at the memorized words. Mostly he blushed because a part of him kept picturing Zevran standing in place of this unknown girl.
Then it came her turn to voice her vows and she took Alistair’s hand in hers to place the ring onto his finger. Her hands were dainty and felt warm and soft to Alistair’s touch. Her voice was also a pleasant surprise, lilting and soft, but full of confidence.
There they stood, holding each other’s hands as the Revered Mother said the final words in the marriage rites. “You may kiss the bride,” she said as her final words, a disapproving look shot at Alistair before she stepped back and Alistair raised his bride’s veil.
Alistair’s breath hitched when he finally saw the face of his bride. “Maker’s breath,” Alistair whispered. “You’re beautiful!”
She blushed at the compliment as Alistair bent down to place a chaste kiss upon her mouth.
He then turned to present his wife and Queen to the crowd gathered in the hall and cheers arose.
Later at the wedding feast Alistair was laughing. Again. His new wife was not only beautiful, she was funny. Eamon, who sat on the other side of Alistair pulled him close and whispered. “So I didn’t do too bad of a match making job, now did I?”
Alistair smiled at his foster father and mentor. “You did a fine job Eamon. You forever have my gratitude.”
Alistair then leaned back over to his bride and whispered into her ear, causing her to giggle. She had an adorable giggle.
Alistair scanned the feast hall a few times that evening, before he finally spotted Zevran. The elf’s eyes were upon him, looking wistful for a moment until he realized Alistair was looking at him. Zevran blushed and Alistair blushed in return before smiling and nodding to the elf. This exchange did not go entirely unnoticed by the new Queen, but she remained silent.
Finally it came time for the King to escort his new Queen to their chambers, ostensibly to perform the final duty of the marriage rites, and consummate the marriage. Once again Alistair was nervous. He’d only ever lain with two others before and only one of them had been a woman…Morrigan and her blasted ritual. A ritual which had thankfully saved both his life and the life of his best friend, who now served as Warden-Commander and Arl of Amaranthine.
Finally he and Kaiya were alone, as he softly closed the door to his chambers and locked it tightly. He took a breath before turning around to look at his new wife. He began blushing as he thought of what they were expected to now do.
Kaiya looked at him with kind eyes. “Come, husband. Let us make ourselves more comfortable and perhaps we could share another cup of wine and talk for a bit first. What say you?”
Alistair smiled. Surprisingly, something about Kaiya put him at ease. “Alright, my dear.”
He shed his plate armor, carefully placing it upon the rack in the corner of his chambers. Once stripped down to just his breaches and silk shirt, he went over to the small table where he kept a flagon of wine and some goblets. He poured one for each of them and went to sit on the large couch in front of the fireplace. Kaiya joined him after having shed her elaborate wedding gown, revealing a simple silk slip underneath.
She took the cup of wine and sat looking at her new husband for a moment, studying his features. “You really are quite handsome, my liege.”
Alistair blushed. “Please, just call me Alistair, at least when we’re alone and we don’t have to follow all those Maker forsaken protocols of state.”
“Alright, Alistair,” she nodded. “Before we take this evening any further, I wanted to speak with you, now that we finally are alone.”
“Alright, and what do you wish to speak of, my dear?” Alistair asked.
“Can you promise to be completely forthright and honest with me?” she asked bluntly.
Alistair blushed and nodded. “Yes, of course.”
“The elf, Zevran Aranai,” she began. Alistair’s features blanched at the mention of his lover’s name, and Kaiya smiled sweetly at him. “He’s your lover, is he not?”
Alistair took a deep breath, blushing deeply. “Yes. He is…or rather was, I suppose.”
“Was?” Kaiya asked, confusion in her voice.
“Well, I’m married to you now, so…” Alistair started, sounding a little wistful.
Kaiya laughed. “Oh my dear sweet husband. You would hardly be the first King to have a lover, male or otherwise. There is no need for you and Zevran to part just because of me.”
“There…there isn’t?” Alistair said in disbelief.
“I know how the world works. I know why you had to marry. I know how much of an honor it was for me to be the one chosen to marry you. In reality I am to be little more than a pampered broodmare,” Kaiya said frankly. “I have accepted this fate just as much as you have. It makes it easier that you are so fair to look upon and that you can make me laugh so easily. As fates go this one isn’t so bad.”
Alistair took Kaiya’s hand in his. “You, my dear, are more than I could have hoped for in a wife.”
Alistair leaned in then, and kissed her tentatively, as she sighed and slid closer to him. They put down their goblets and Alistair pulled her into a tender embrace.
What felt like hours later, they lay entwined upon the bed, recovering from their love making. “Maker’s breath, woman. I had no idea women could be so…”
“Insatiable?” Kaiya asked, giggling. “What about all that Grey Warden stamina I’ve heard about?” she asked teasingly.
“Even Grey Wardens have their limits, my dear,” Alistair said chuckling, pulling her in for another kiss. He decided he liked kissing her. It was different from Zevran, but not at all unpleasant.
“At least you weren’t the virginal Chantry boy I feared you’d be,” Kaiya said, half-joking.
Alistair chuckled. “You have no idea. Six-months ago…Zevran taught me so much.” The King then blushed profusely, again, after he realized what he’d just said. “Oh dear. I am so sorry, I didn’t mean…”
Kaiya laughed at his preposterous stuttering. “Alistair. Dear husband. It’s quite alright. I think I’m going to have to thank Zevran personally for teaching you such…skill. In fact…” her voice trailed off wickedly.
“In faaaact…?” Alistair asked.
“Well, I am rather fond of…elves,” she began, blushing. “Do you think he’d be up to…joining us?”
“Y…y…you want Zevran? To join us? In…bed?” Alistair stuttered.
Kaiya nodded enthusiastically. “Perhaps the two of you together can finally…sate…me…” she said with a wink and a fit of giggles.
“Maker’s breath,” Alistair sighed. “My dear, you truly are full of surprises.”
…and that was how King Alistair Theirin became very happily married, sharing his bed enthusiastically with both his wife and elven lover.