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The Good Romance Project

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[An exchange of notes found on a barrel on the second floor of the Herald's Rest Tavern.]

I drew pictures for your book. You better like them.
- Sera

They're beautiful, Buttercup. Too beautiful for something as plebian as my book.
- Varric

Liar. You're not gonna use them are you?
- Sera

Oh, I'm using them. I slipped them into Cullen's clipboard instead.
- Varric

If you were a woman, I'd marry you.
- Sera

Stop it. You're making Bianca jealous. (Don't stop.)
- Varric


[A transcription of a Skyhold conversation found on Leliana's desk.]

Cullen: Leliana won't say it was you, but I know it was you, Sera. I was at a very important meeting, and instead of the paperwork I needed to give, I passed out pictures of badly drawn erect penises to three chevaliers before I realized what they were. Do you realize what you've done? My reputation has taken a blow, and now one of those chevaliers keeps asking me to dinner. It's awkward, to say the least.
Sera: That's amazing. I wish it had been me. I wish I could have seen the look on your face.
Cullen: It had to be you. I recognized your art. This means war, you realize.
Sera: Everything's war with you, yeah? Fine. If I win, you have to have dinner with the chevalier. And write me a letter that says I win, so I can show it to everyone.
Cullen: And if I win, you have to have dinner with the chevalier instead.
Sera: Either way, I win. Is she cute?
Cullen: He is... handsome enough, I suppose.
Sera: I definitely have to win now. For two reasons. One of those being that the Inquisitor will be jealous. Or would that be a good thing?
Cullen: She's a horned magic-casting giant with the power to control Fade rifts. It certainly wouldn't be a good thing for the chevalier.


[Excerpt from "The Griffon and the Crow" Chapter Nine.]

Beneath the snow covering Ostagar slept thousands of corpses. They had been people once. People Alaric knew. He wondered where Durglan lay. Where King Caethran lay. He wondered how he could walk through its ruins knowing this was where he had lost what mattered to him.

Then Zeandre slipped his hand into Alaric's, reminding him that he was no longer alone. Alaric squeezed his hand, took a breath, and followed Amelia into the place where it had all started....


[A note found in the wastebin near Varric Tethras's desk.]

Is this a tragedy? Are you writing a tragedy? So help me Maker, if this is a tragedy, I will kill you and then summon a spirit to possess your corpse so I can kill you again. You realize I can actually do that, right?
- Dorian

[An exchange of notes found in the main hall of Skyhold.]

Really sorry about you catching it for my prank. Glad Solas knew a spell to take care of all that tree sap. (Also, the fact that he can regrow hair strikes me as a bit ironic, but I digress.) Forgive me?
- Varric

Don't worry, I got this.
- Sera

Um, that wasn't forgiveness. I'm still in trouble, aren't I?
- Varric

You catch on fast for a guy with such short legs, yeah?
- Sera


[A note found on Josephine Montilyet's desk]

Lady Montilyet,
The costs for repairing the Commander's desk, door, and bed are itemized below. The labor costs for removing all of his breeches from the banners are also included. The arrows that pinned them have been confiscated. But I'm not touching the worms in the Commander's coffee supply. There's not enough coin in all Thedas. Just tell him to throw it all out.
- MacCorrath


[Excerpt from "The Griffon and the Crow" Chapter Eleven.]

Alaric stood at the doorway, but didn't look inside the room. Instead, he glanced down the hall, where Zeandre's room was. Perhaps Zeandre was waiting for him. Alaric looked away. It was better if Zeandre didn't know about this. Explaining it would be too hard. Alaric didn't want to know what Zeandre's face would look like when it was explained to him that Alaric had to sleep with someone else just to survive destroying the Archdemon. Whether he looked heartbroken or uncaring, either way, it would hurt. Alaric preferred not to risk it.

Morganna also waited for him inside her room. She pulled two potions filled with glowing purple liquid from her bags and turned to him. "The elf seems quite attached to you. I doubt he would prefer your death," she said, her tone surprisingly gentle. "Just drink this, undress, and lie back. You can think of him during the ritual, if you like."

Though he took the potion and drank it, Alaric did not think of Zeandre. Every time he did, he felt as if something black were eating away at his heart. Zeandre couldn't know. Alaric couldn't tell him. And he couldn't think of Zeandre, not if he was going to do this. He licked his lips, tasting the cloying sweet of Morganna's potion, and started to slide his tunic off.

Neither of them looked the other in the eye that night.


[Reconstructed excerpt from a tattered, burned journal.]

It is done. Alistair agreed, as I thought he would. I... regret that it had to be him. And not so much because I found him distasteful—he was surprisingly gentle—but because I know he was unhappy. But I needed his seed, and he needed to live. It had to be done. For him, nothing will change. For me, everything will.


[As posted on the front of Sera's door in the Herald's Rest Tavern.]

You win.
- Cullen
P.S. Dinner was surprisingly pleasant, so I'm not sure you actually have. Ser Michel de Chevin is quite charming, actually. Please tear this postscript off before posting this.

[The note bears no sign of tearing.]


[A discarded note found in the Skyhold library.]

Here's the next chapter. Don't kill me. I'm too beautiful to die.
- Varric


[Excerpt from "The Griffon and the Crow" Chapter Fourteen.]

They were finally alone, but Zeandre kept walking up the stairs, away from Alaric, ignoring him as he had since the final battle. Alaric had thought perhaps he was distracted by the endless celebrations or Alaric's impending coronation, but it was clear by now that Zeandre was avoiding him. Alaric ran up the steps and grabbed Zeandre's wrist. "Hey!" Alaric swallowed. "Didn't you hear me calling your name?"

Zeandre paused, his back still to Alaric. He said nothing and leaned away. His long blond hair hung in his face, obscuring his expression.

"Please say something, Zeandre. What did I do wrong?"

Zeandre leaned his head back, his hair rippling across his back, but he didn't turn. "You're truly going to ask me that?"

"I don't understand."

"I went looking for you the night before the battle, Your Majesty. And I found you. In Morganna's room."

Alaric swallowed hard, that same feeling of something black chewing on his heart suddenly returning from that night. "Zeandre, I—I have a good explanation for that."

Zeandre tugged his hand free and turned around. He smiled brightly, though his gaze was as sharp as one of his knives. "Ah, but there is no need for one. I well understand such desires, having given into a few myself in the past. I admit, it was a bit of a surprise that you were the one to give into temptation, but you needn't explain anything. I understand perfectly. She's a beautiful woman, no?"

"That's not it. I swear, Zeandre, I had to—"

Zeandre turned around. "Don't bother finishing that statement. I'm not interested. Keep the earring, if you like. It doesn't really mean anything."

And as swiftly as Zeandre had come into Alaric's life, he left the same way. Alaric sagged against the stone wall. He was alone again, and he had no one to blame for it but himself.


[From the diary of Grey Warden Alistair of Ferelden.]


The Blight's over. I'm now King of Ferelden. Zevran left.

[There are no subsequent entries in the diary.]

[A note found on Ser Cullen Rutherford's desk.]

Can you arrest Zevran Arainai for me? Asking for a friend.
- Varric


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