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beating around the bush

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“If you were raised in the Chantry, have you never...?

The question tumbled out of Elissa’s mouth before she could stop herself. Her mother always said she had a sharp tongue and said whatever was on her mind. It was a trait Elissa doubted she would ever be truly able to shake.

Alistair blinked slowly, face turning a cute shade of red. He grinned nervously, despite the embarrassment he was feeling. “Never…? Never what? Had a good pair of shoes?”

“You always have a wide array of jokes on hand, don't you, Alistair?” she asked teasingly.

Elissa knew the answer was yes, of course. From the moment they met, Alistair always seemed to have a witty comeback, silly pun, or some kind of joke on the tip of his tongue. Much to Morrigan’s dismay, but she certainly countered with barbs and insults of her own.

He laughed. “My dear, you have no idea.”

Elissa sensed the topic was an uncomfortable one for Alistair. She didn't want to push because their relationship was still so new. Eventually they would have to touch on the subject of sex, but for now Elissa was more than happy to leave it for another day.

While they were walking back to the camp, Elissa paused and gently nudged Alistair in the chest with her elbow. “So we’ve moved onto pet names already, honey?”

“Ah, well it appears we have,” Alistair said. “Is that all right?”

“Let me think about it for a bit, sweetheart.”

He sighed. “I’m going to regret this, aren’t I?”

The only answer Elissa gave was a laugh followed by a wink. Surprisingly, Alistair’s blush only deepened a bit. However, he did avert his gaze and wander over to his tent, which was currently occupied by Barkspawn.

Elissa knew it wouldn’t be long before she was completely in love with Alistair.