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Endurance

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She has endured the worst of things.

So they tell her, and sometimes Evelyn is inclined to agree. She has lost her family members, her own sister - a chantry sister – at the conclave. She has survived the destruction of Haven, lost more friends there. She has travelled the width and breadth of Ferelden and Orlais, picking apart demons and darkspawn alike. She has been into the fade and fought her own fears, taken down a Nightmare. An archdemon.

More bears than she can count.

She has faced every enemy and taken an arrow in every muscle, or a sword, a dagger, a hit of magic. Her skin has been torn and scorched and scarred.

She has fallen. Asleep, unconscious, into depression.

When it comes down to it, her final confrontation with Corypheus wasn’t even that bad. Traumatic, too much was lost and Solas is gone without a trace, but she has survived.

Evelyn has survived over and over and after this last battle she all but dragged herself back to Skyhold.

Back to Josephine.

Whatever she has done, whatever she has faced, she is sure she does not deserve Josephine Montilyet.

There are celebrations, wild and unrestrained all around the fortress; Josephine is too plan something more sedate and official but later, when things have calmed down and Evelyn has rested. When Evelyn has finished taking her time with Josie.

She strips her down to her underwear, all silk frills and ruffles. Her stockings are sheer and she leaves them on, urges her into a chair and drops to her knees before her. Her sword has been discarded, armour in a pile on the side, she has barely cleaned the blood from her, brown hair pulled back into a ponytail.

Evelyn is worshipped, as a herald, the Inquisitor and now the saviour of Thedas.

But it is Josephine she worships.

Josephine has endured the worst along with her. Her broken bones and broken mind; and put her back together. She deserves to be worshipped but someone much better than Evelyn yet here they are.

She pushes her knees apart, looks up at her and smiles. Josephine is flushed red and smiling shyly. They have done this time and time before, but Evelyn hasn’t felt quite like this before.

Like the world was worth saving.

“I love you,” she tells her. And Josephine knows, has known for a long time before the duel and their public declarations. It’s never in doubt but Evelyn likes to say it, over and over and Josephine likes to hear it

Josephine cups her cheek.

“I love you too,” she replies and Evelyn could cry.

Instead, she prays for a moment, to a Maker she’s never sure she believes in and leans up to kiss her.

“It should be I that kneels at your feet my love,” she tells her and Evelyn shakes her head. It’s hard to explain exactly why that should not be the case and how uncomfortable that makes her feel.

Apparently, it is fine, easy, to put Josephine on a pedestal but to be on one herself...with Josephine beneath her...she does not want such a thing. It wouldn’t be right.

She doesn’t voice this, can’t, instead, she kisses the bare patches of skin where her stockings end, high on Josephine’s thigh. She gasps, legs falling open a little more and Evelyn shifts closer. They could move, should move, her knees are going to be sore late. Instead, she unclips her garters, leaves them hanging by her thighs and pulls down the frilly small clothes. She leaves the rest on, there is something wonderful about a partially dressed Josephine, a little dishevelled as she is.

Evelyn has endured much but loving Josephine is the easiest thing she has ever experienced.

She slips her hands up and under Josephine’s legs, up and around her backside and pulls her closer to the edge of the chair she sits on before leaning forward and placing a kiss on the soft curve of her stomach. Josephine squirms, they both laugh, until her lips trail lower and Evelyn is quiet in concentration and Josephine begins to moan.

Josephine is sweet, to touch, to taste, to talk to. To listen to her like this is akin to listening to songbirds Evelyn has decided. Melodic and beautiful. She loves doing this, making her sing, making her happy.

She loves making her happy however she can, whether it’s here on her knees in her room – their room – or saving the world. Evelyn will do it. For Josephine.

She knows she’s in too deep but doesn’t really care.

Josephine arches her hips into Evelyn’s face, crying out as she pushes her a little hard. She moves one hand down, back over her hip and thigh and between her legs. Josephine whispers please and Evelyn delivers, pushing her harder and higher than she can ever remember doing.

Though Evelyn’s memory might not be what it was.

There is a moment, when everything she has worked for, is rewarded. Both in this and in the field. It comes when Josephine cries out her name, shakes and shivers under her touch. Josephine is lost to her in that moment, away somewhere glorious that Evelyn knows well.

She always returns though, as Evelyn always has and always will.

She was certain in her defeat over Corypheus, that she would return after every encounter, every mission. Until she fell into the Fade at least. Though she never mentioned that to Josephine, never let her know.

Josephine looks down at her and smiles, dreamy and wide.

“Your knees much hurt so much,” she says.

Evelyn stands and struggles to her feet, one hand on Josephine’s leg for leverage.

“A little,” she admits.

“Then let us continue this in your bed.”

Josephine stands too, kisses her on the lips before embracing her tightly.

“I was so scared,” she whispers and Evelyn squeezes her harder than she means too.

“So was I.”