Varric could feel.
But he was asleep.
He was dreaming?
Dwarves don't dream.
The air was heavy, thick, familiar from the trip to save that poor sleeping half elf from himself.
And here he was again, improbable as it seemed, dwarf in the Fade, twice in a row, some sort of mansion, heavy fancy clothes, no Bianca on his back. His fingers twitched, uneasy, unarmed.
Anything could happen.
But nothing did. Just a quiet room, rich tapestries, dwarf-sized furniture. No one else.
No pretend sunlight beyond the view, either.
He frowned, walking towards a window, his frown only growing deeper as his sturdy stride made no sound on hard stone floors. That's not normal.
He looked out the window, eyes wide at the sight of soaring stone, rich red light reflecting up from somewhere out of sight, far below the walkways he could see, glittering on mirrors and metal walls and jewels placed perfectly to make the giant cavern sparkle and glow, the buildings beautiful and ornate and strong.
But not Orzammar as he heard about it now, oh no. There were crowds filling the streets below him, voices filling the air as they talked, and shopped, and argued. There were so many of them, bright and brilliant and colourful and happy.
This was Orzammar of more than a thousand years ago, before the first Blight, Orzammar back when his people were strong and prosperous and hopeful.
He'd never felt regret for what the Tethras clan had lost before, happier on the surface, happier with friends and stories and adventures, but now, this... This should be real. This shouldn't be lost.
"Husband." He turned away from the window, for once completely speechless. The dwarva before him was exquisite, her body full and curvy, her black hair tied up above her head, her eyes so dark he thought them black as well, until her head tilted and he saw the slightest flash of green when they caught the light. And her smile, soft and warm apparently just for him. "What are you dreaming about, love?"
"I don't..." He shook his head, his voice caught in his throat. Husband? Love?
"Oh," she sighed, stepping slowly across the room towards him, that smile deepening, a dimple appearing in her cheek. "I haven't seen that look in your eyes for all of a day and a half!" Her laugh was as beautiful as the rest of her, rich and rumbling and sweet, and then she was beside him, her voice a whisper against his ear. "We should take advantage of it while our little ones are off with Nanna, shouldn't we?"
Little ones? But for all his thoughts couldn't line up more than a word or two in order, his heart thumped hard in his chest at the thought of children, a wife, a family, one apparently born of joy and love, her hands slid around him, her mouth on his, his body responding enthusiastically to her warmth, her taste, her skin against his, no grief or regret or ale or greed or exile...
Her tongue slid between his lips, her hands moving down to grab his ass, to pull their hips together, and he gave up worrying and wondering, this was too good, too wonderful, if this is what humans get every night, it's no wonder the Fade seduces them so easily.
If this was his only chance at a dream, he was damn well going to enjoy it.
He took his time getting her naked, his mysterious perfect lover, admiring every inch of skin with hands and mouth and words. He worshipped her breasts, hands and mouth and tongue, only pausing in his sucking long enough to compliment them, extol their weight and shape and taste, before dropping his mouth to a nipple again, a gentle scrape of his nail against the other one, back and forth and again and again until she cried out, her body arching up off the bed.
"Stone, Varric." She laughed again, something that was rapidly becoming his new favorite sound, though it was breathier this time. Still beautiful.. "You haven't done that since we were courting, sneaking touches in dark hallways and empty rooms, seeing how far we could get without taking off our pants."
"Then it's high time I did it again, hmm?" He kissed her again, every touch lush and perfect, his hands stroking down her sides, trailing along her hips. "What would you like next, my love?"
"Oh, you should definitely keep that clever tongue of yours very busy, don't you think?"
He grinned, and shimmied down her body until he could do as she asked, tasting every bit of her, licking her folds, her clit, sliding his tongue as deep inside her as he could get. He circled her nub with his tongue, then pushed it inside again, angling up with his jaw, pushing deeper, rubbing his nose up against her clit again, harder and harder, his face pushed so tight against her he had trouble breathing.
Her thighs were braced on his shoulders, her heels digging into his back, her fingers tangled in his hair, her voice high and breathy as she cried out again, her legs so tight around him he really couldn't breathe at all, for just a moment.
Absolutely worth it.
He licked a few more times, gentle and slow as she sighed. She tugged on his hair, and he lifted his head, following her strong fingers until he reached her face, until she kissed him, hard and thorough. And then she shoved his shoulders, rolling him over and straddling him, lowering herself on his cock without a word of warning, and he forgot to breathe again, shoving himself up inside her, feeling her clench around him, hearing her moan.
"Oh yes." She rolled her hips, eyes closed, a soft shudder through her body as he pushed up again. "Sometimes I just need you inside me, husband."
"Anytime, wife." His heart ached at that, knowing this wasn't real, just a dream, a perfect nameless wife, perfect invisible children, an impossible home. But he couldn't stand not playing along; the very idea hurt even more. "Anything you want. You know that."
"Anything?" That dimple again, as she leaned down to kiss him, her body sliding gloriously along his cock as she moved. "Fuck me hard, husband. Fill me with your seed until I'm pregnant again. We already had twins. Let's make the whole city green with envy as we have more."
He growled his agreement, his fingers tight against her thighs as he thrust up again and again, her body a perfect fit, a tight grip all down the length of him, warm and wet, rubbing everywhere as he moved, until she clenched harder, and he swelled with seed, filling her as she'd asked.
He flipped her over and did it again, her legs wrapped around his hips, her body arching up to meet each thrust until she cried out his name, until he felt the pressure in his balls overflow inside her.
And again, from behind this time, her hands braced on their headboard, her perfect full ass under his hands, the slap of skin audible at the end of each thrust, their voices rough and raspy with over-use as they cried out in unison.
Even in dreams though, there had to come an end, bodies sweaty and chests heaving, collapsed together. He slid his hands to hold her cheeks, kissing her again and again, trying to freeze time, to make it real, to stop the dream from passing. But finally, despite his best efforts, her breath evened out beside him, and his own eyelids were too heavy to keep open.
He wondered, before he drifted to sleep, if he'd ask the mages about the Fade when he woke back up in Kirkwall, if he'd try to learn about dreaming, try to find a way back. Maybe even bother Choir Boy, with his books and his Chants. He found he rather wanted to believe in Brides, all of a sudden.