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Of all the ways Taliesen expected that he'd encounter the Grey Warden, alone in a tavern was simply not it. Trotting along on some errand in a back alley with his companions, perhaps even Zevran, yes... but not sitting alone with his back to the door at a bar, nursing a suspiciously potent-looking drink.

Was the man stupid? Or was he even truly alone here?

His own 'companions' out scouring the city for this very mage, Taliesen hung back from the man and observed quietly, ordering a drink of his own when a bar wench came by. The Crow was just another scruffy-looking human in this place, surely. There were a lot of those here. Perhaps he passed for a mercenary with his armor and weapons, but this -- too -- was a regular sight in Denerim, especially these days.

He even leered at the bar wench when she brought his drink over; made a clumsy pass; toasted her retreating back after the almost-scripted rejection.

And he watched Tannusen Surana, former Circle Mage and surviving Grey Warden. That last part would be former too, if Taliesen had his way. He grinned into his drink, taking a far smaller sip than appearance let on.

The elven man was attractive enough, he had to give him that. Was that why Zevran had elected to stay in his company? Surely it couldn't be entirely out of fear of the Crows. Zevran knew how to hide, and traipsing around the countryside with the man who crowned Kings and found long-lost holy sites and destroyed whole armies of undead to revive dying Arls was hardly the way to do it. So... why?

Taliesen took a larger sip of his drink, and contemplated this angle on his friend's strange absence.

His mark was tall for an elf. He could tell that just by how long one muscled leg was, canted off to one side with a boot-heel hooked over the lowest rung of his bar-stool. The man was dressed rather well, and rather oddly for a mage, opting to wear all blacks and dark greys and nothing like the usual ornate robes of his fellows. Black trousers, plain robes left hanging open from top to bottom, and -- at a glimpse in the mirror over the bar -- a black tunic and a buckled-closed vest. No road-dust, which meant he'd been in Denerim at least long enough to clean up and change, as Taliesen himself had.

The lack of color set off his white-gold hair, long and straight enough to reach his belt, pulled back into a simple tail at the nape of his neck. His long bangs looked about ready to fall into his vivid blue eyes, but didn't. Pale skin--

It had taken Taliesen a moment, but he realized that the mage was staring right back at him in that mirror, one pale eyebrow raised in question. Catching his eye, Surana raised his drink in an ironic toast at the mirror, his slightly too-wide mouth quirked into a lopsided smirk.

Yes, he was definitely attractive enough.

Having been spotted anyway, Taliesen got up from his table and carried his drink over to the empty stool beside his target's, settling in and taking the chance to get a better look at the pale elf's surprisingly broad shoulders and fit physique beneath snug-fitting clothing. "You have quite the pair of roaming eyes, ser stranger," the mage chuckled, his voice a warm, velvet-over-steel purr that pleased Taliesen's ears enough to compel him to take another sip of his drink.

"Oh? Is it a problem?" Taliesen asked with a returning smirk, not looking away.

"Not at all," Surana purred, "I simply wonder if your hands roam as far as your eyes do."

Ah-ha, no wonder Zevran liked this man's company. He was perhaps as shamelessly perverted as any Crow... but was he as experienced? Did he have the skill to back up that pretty face and fair skin and very firm-looking build? Taliesen was admittedly... intrigued. "They roam even further, given half a chance," the human returned smoothly, raking his gaze down his mark's body and back up again just for good measure.

So he liked blond elves, so what? It wouldn't be the first time a Crow fucked a pretty target just to get his rocks off before making the kill. And if he killed the Warden after a quick screw, he could find Zevran all the faster and cart him back to Antiva with the contract payment waiting to weigh down their pockets back home. Clean, simple, done and done. Winners all around, except for the dead Warden, but what Crow cared about the target?

"Prove it," Tannusen interrupted his thoughts.

"What... here?" Taliesen was admittedly startled. Weren't Fereldans supposed to be... he didn't know, finicky about doing such things in public?

"Where else?" the Mage laughed, the sound rich and pleasant. "Get me hard enough and maybe I'll put down gold for one of this dive's nasty little back stalls, hm?" Surana turned toward him on the barstool, his knee still skewed to one side, and smirked into his drink, "Unless you aren't up for the challenge..."

Taliesen laughed. Yes, he could see some of why Zevran would find this man acceptable company. Although it still didn't explain why the damn fool would roam around the countryside with him, righting wrongs and quelling blights. Ah well. He would ask him once the Warden was dead and he tracked his fellow Antivan down. To be sure, it would give the two of them something to chat about on the long trip home.

Instead of answering with words, Taliesen set his drink aside on the bar and stood up, stepping close to the seated elf and bumping his knee further out with his hip, one hand settling on the Warden's thigh. Surana's reaction was to merely smile a pretty little smile up at him, adding his glass to the bar-top and tipping his head back to watch the human, clearly not bothered by the sudden shift in height.

In fact, there was a challenging gleam to those pretty blue eyes, and so Taliesen tangled his hand in the mage's hair, loosening it in its simple tail as he pulled Tannusen's head back further and leaned down to taste him. It wasn't gentle or kind, and his other hand squeezed the thick muscle of the elf's thigh through his pants, sliding up to boldly cup his goal, rubbing just a little too hard on purpose.

The lips under his tasted like his drink, strong and sweet. That suited Taliesen just fine. "Are you trying to seduce me, or injure me?" Surana asked with a breathless little laugh once his lips were free, swinging his knee out further to give Taliesen even more access.

"Oh, I don't know..." a hard yank at Tannusen's scalp had the mage's eyes half-lidding as he stared up at him. The Crow smirked as he felt an interested twitch through the cloth beneath his fingers. "Do I have to pick just one?"

"Not at all," Surana breathed up at him. Wordlessly, he produced a number of silver from a pocket and set it on the bar. A key was slid across the top, which the elf took before simply standing up, making Taliesen backup a half-step to avoid being knocked into. Interesting.

"I thought I had to get you hard, first?" Taliesen laughed, "Pretty eager, aren't you?"

"I just wanted to see what your approach would be," Tannusen's purr was almost... predatory as he started off in the direction the barkeep pointed, pulling Taliesen along by the straps that held his weapons to his back. Very interesting. He allowed himself to be pulled along by the elf, amused when Surana didn't let go even to unlock the door of the tiny room they'd rented, pushing it open and shoving Taliesen inside ahead of him.

His mark was a very direct man, it seemed. Taliesen didn't mind, and he let himself be shoved back against the wall beside the dimly-lit room's rather questionable-looking bed, and responded in kind when the mage caught him in a bruising kiss, "So," that purring voice managed between nips and hard licks, "which role do you prefer?"

Taliesen laughed again at that, and grabbed the other man's ponytail, hauling him forcefully off himself and then tripping him onto the bed. The mage tumbled onto the bedcovers with a frustrating level of grace, sitting back up to shrug out of his strange robes and his vest and dropping them off one side of the bed and onto the floor.

"I didn't come to this dive to get fucked, if that's what you mean," Taliesen stated, hanging his weapon harness off the bedpost where the two blades would be easily-grabbed. It was the truth, even if he hadn't come here to do any fucking, really.

But he wasn't going to pass up the opportunity presented to him, and he began unbuckling his armor.

"Good," the elven man chuckled, and tossed a small vial at Taliesen that the assassin caught automatically. "Because I did."

Taliesen snorted, and set the vial down on the corner of the bed. "If you want to be loosened up at all, you'd better do it yourself," he warned, "I don't intend to."

"No," Surana kicked off his boots and squirmed out of his remaining clothing, before grabbing Taliesen's hip and pulling him closer to the edge of the bed, working efficiently at undoing the rest of his armor. He was well-practiced at taking leathers off, Taliesen noted, torn between derision and amusement. Cold, dark amusement won out as his own skin was bared, tattoos and all, and he saw a flash of recognition in those pretty blue eyes. "Ah-ha," Tannu laughed, and leaned in to lick at a particularly familiar marking on Taliesen's hip. "A Crow. Are you here to kill me, then?"

Taliesen pulled the elf's hair free the rest of the way from its tie, and ran his bare hands over the mage's warm-skinned neck and shoulders. "What do you think?"

"I think that this only makes it better," Tannusen purred, looping an arm around the human's waist and pulling him closer yet, so that he could give Taliesen's half-hard length a nice, hot, enticing lick. "I hope you weren't expecting me to try to deter you," the elf added slyly, "I've always enjoyed these games."

"It's not a game anymore when you die, you fool," Taliesen snorted in dark humor, and took himself in hand, stroking slowly in between the mage's licks. The elf was talented, or at least well-practiced, tracing a vein here and lapping rapidly at the assassin's tip, his tongue firm and hot.

"Oh? Isn't it?" Surana laughed with an odd delight as he was shoved back onto the bed, the human climbing on over him, still stroking himself. The elf wasn't fully hard yet, but it hardly mattered. Taliesen took a moment to slick himself with the oil, and then hooked the mage's legs with his arms and pulled his hips up, lining himself up and pushing.

If Tannusen had doubted that he didn't intend to help loosen him up, he was very good at hiding it. The mage pushed back against his intrusion as he pushed into him, the tight ring of muscle clenching deliciously in resistance. However, the pained sound that tore out of him was accompanied by even more pushing-back, and the elf's cock hardened quickly under the assault to his entrance.

"Ha!" Taliesen shoved the rest of the way in, letting a shudder go through his frame at the tight, tight, slickened, rippling heat all around him from root to tip. "Something of a masochist, are we?"

"Mm, I know how to relax enough without being fingered," the elf purred, clearly not in much discomfort. He stroked his hands up and down Taliesen's arms, "but I don't have to do it very much, now do I? I trust you'll be nice and rough. I want bruises, ser Crow. See to it, will you?"

As if it mattered what Tannusen really wanted... he would be dead soon. Taliesen barked out a short, sharp laugh at the entire situation, and leaned down to bite the side of the elf's pretty, pale neck, bending him nearly in half as he did so and deepening the angle of his slow, hard thrusts. Ah well, it didn't hurt to give him what he wanted anyway, did it? At least, it didn't hurt him.

Beneath him, the mage groaned and writhed, tipping his head out of Taliesen's way to let him at his neck, his fingers digging bruisingly into the Crow's broad shoulders. He clenched and shuddered by turns around Taliesen's cock at each hard thrust, encouraging him with gasps and cries to go even harder, until the mage had to put his arm against the headboard of the bed to brace himself, and Taliesen bit down on his shoulder hard enough to draw blood.

And so it went, Taliesen lost himself to a long period of hard breathing and blood-touched lips and that tight, so tight heat around his cock, pushing and pulling at his skin, clenching and shifting and--

He gave his target a nice, hard kiss to match their nice, hard fucking, and reached for his nearby knives, drawing one. Mages were too dangerous to try to kill after, if they suspected the game, and the steel glinted coldly in the dimly lit room as he jerked his arm forwa--

The
world
stopped.

Surana laughed breathlessly and pushed Taliesen over, flipping them without breaking their coupling and running his fingers up the flat of the knife stopped so close to his throat. The glow of his Paralyze glyph reflected in his pretty blue eyes, and Taliesen felt a sudden dread. He'd messed up, and royally at that, and the only logical conclusion would be death.

Tannusen brushed his long hair back over his shoulders from sweat-dampened skin and gripped Taliesen's raised arm for leverage, sliding up... and then dropping back down again. Unable to move more than to breathe and watch, utterly helpless suddenly, Taliesen couldn't even groan as the angle shoved him deeper yet, the mage starting up a new rhythm that was just as hard as before.

"Don't worry," Surana breathed, running his tongue up the flat of the knife that had almost killed him, "you'll still come like this. You just can't move. Can't thrust. Can't writhe, or cry out or -- ahh!" Tannusen's eyes were mostly-lidded, and his lopsided smile was as terrible as it was beautiful, "Or even defend yourself..."

Taliesen could do nothing but watch, and feel, and each sensation seemed so much more vivid as a result; he had nothing else to focus on. The rippling clench around his cock, the other man's weight, his slick, pale skin, the way the dim light lit his white-gold hair... and that smile. That cold glint in those pretty blue eyes.

He had been wrong to think that his mark was the only prey here. Or that he was the only predator.

The knot of fire building in him couldn't be held off, not without being able to reach down and squeeze himself, or change the pace. Taliesen could only widen his eyes and breathe a little harder as the tight heat forced him over the cliff's edge and he came, silent and still, into the elf who fucked himself on his paralyzed body.

Tannusen stroked himself, still riding Taliesen for a few more moments, his bottom lip bleeding between his teeth as he moved with a singular purpose. And then he tightened around the human assassin, shoving himself down, his spend flecking over Taliesen's stomach and chest as the elf cried out and jerked over him.

The mage remained tense for a few moments, and then relaxed slowly, giving the knife near his throat a leisurely kiss before he rose up on his knees, splaying his hands over Taliesen's skin, rubbing his seed into the assassin's body.

"This was fun," Tannusen purred contently, smearing a few drops of himself across Taliesen's spell-stilled lips. "We should do this again, sometime."

The mage wiped himself clean and re-dressed himself, and then left without another word, casually locking the door on his way out. And Taliesen was left staring up at the ceiling, waiting for the glyph to dissipate, with little to do but wait. Wait, and plan...