Lavellan sat upon her mighty throne, arms folded and legs crossed. Of all the judgement she would have to make in her career as leader of the Inquisition, this one may have been the hardest. Her gaze bore down on Blackwall, or Thom Rainier as it were, as he pathetically shuffled into the Skyhold main hall, arms shackled and head hanging low. She could barely focus on what Josie had been saying--not that she needed to hear his long list of crimes again. She had already read the dossier, and knew exactly what this man had done... Whomever he was.
On one hand, he was a coward and a liar by the name of Thom. On the other, he was Blackwall; One of her biggest supports despite their vast differences, someone kind and caring, someone who has stood before the fiery breath of a dragon for her. Blackwall was courageous and good. But she did not know who Thom was. She did not recognize the husk of a man standing before her.
'For the love of Andraste, take those off,' Lavellan hissed. 'He is one of our own, for fuck sake.'
Thom groaned as his shackles were removed. The hate in her voice had unsettled him. 'Inquisitor...'
'You lied to me, Thom Rainier,' she said, her tone heavy with anger. She spit out his name, as if it were foul. 'For how long... You have been lying to me.'
'I have,' he said quietly, as he swallowed his pride.
Lavellan stood from her throne, footsteps like thunder as she approached him. 'I placed not only my own life, but the lives of my team, and even all of Thedas, in your hands. I trusted you.' She stopped just before him, looking down upon him from her platform. 'I told you Inquisition secrets. Some of my own secrets. And this is what I find? A snake in my garden?'
Thom had found it hard to look at her, and when he did finally meet her gaze, he instantly regretted it. Her expression could have destroyed him. Her pain had effected him more than he thought it would. He could see how angry she was; her cheeks flushed as her blood seemed to boil at even just the thought of him, but she also seemed to be afraid. Of what, Thom couldn't guess. He drew in a deep breath to speak.
'Danythari,.. You should have left me in jail. I'd come to terms with my punishment, and I-'
'Well, I did not!' She shouted. She looked as if she'd wanted to say something else, but she changed her mind. She turned away from him, fists on her hips.
'Danythari, you know I would never do anything to intentionally harm you, or the Inquisition,' he said softly.
With that, Lavellan was overcome by her own anger. She turned on her heel and struck the man across his face, but she wasn't sure why. Of course she knew that, but even his voice, at this moment, was grating. She did not want to hurt him, either. He was a dear friend of hers. But she could not control herself.
'Why did you think you could not tell me?' she shouted as Blackwall shied away from her. 'Did you think that you could not trust me?'
'I couldn't bear the thought of how you would disapprove of who I was,' he said, surprising himself with how honest he was. His shoulders sunk down as he sighed.
'And this is what you wanted instead? My wrath?' she snapped.
'You weren't meant to know, at all!' He replied quickly. 'I wanted you to leave me to my punishment, and serve my time. I wanted you to know that you have changed me, made me a better man,' he said pleadingly. He followed her as she retreated to her throne, and waved the guards off. She knew he wouldn't attack her, and that brought him some comfort that she still allowed him to be near her. He knelt down before her as she threw herself into her seat. 'I want you to send me back to the jailers,' he said, very sure of himself. He certainly did not want to go back, but he knew that he had to. 'Allow me to serve my sentence.'
'Your sentence is death.'
'Then, so be it, Danythari. If I am to be hung, then I deserve it.'
'Shut up,' she said as she pinched the bridge of her nose. 'You're far too valuable a member for me to just give away.'
Thom sighed. 'You want me to stay,' he said, more a statement than a question.
'Of course I do,' she replied incredulously. 'You are my fucking soldier, my friend, and I need you here,' she said. 'And if anyone has a problem with it, they can blow it up their own ass.'
Not many would have noticed, but Thom knew she'd been fighting back her tears. He sighed. 'And what of the reputation of the Inquisition? What about Josie, who used numerous favours to have me released to you? If word gets out that we are--That you are corrupt...'
Lavellan sneered. 'It is true, that if you were most anyone else, I would have let you rot in jail. But you are not the first, and you are not the last to have been saved from the stocks by working for the Inquisition instead.' She drew in a deep breath. 'It is not meant for you.'
'And I am meant to be here?'
Lavellan sat quietly as she stared his down. She had a hard time dealing with the fact that this man, who was somehow simultaneously rugged and soft, bitter but sweet, could have lied so greatly to her. She leaned forward to him, wanting to tell him that she hated him, and that if he were going to die by anyone's hand, it should be hers, but she did not.
'Yes.' She said quietly. 'I have giving you your freedom. On the condition that you give your whole life to the Inquisition, to atone for your crimes, as who you are. Not who you pretend to be.'
Rainier frowned. 'I don't know who I am anymore,' he said, almost in a whisper.
'I know,' she said as she closed the space between them. Her forehead touched his (despite his off-putting musk of prison and despair), and she spoke quietly so that the court would not hear her. 'And I will help you find yourself. But you cannot lie to me anymore, Thom.'
He closed his eyes. He, too, was fighting off tears. She had given him a chance to truly be the person he wished he could be, so why was he not happy? 'Perhaps my word means nothing to you know, but I swear to you that I-'
'No promises, Thom,' she said as she sat upright. 'Just be ready to head out with us in the morning.'