Oct 22, 2021 5:58 AM
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Jahenna feels that it's just fucking typical that the Blight would start just as she was getting to the good part of her book.

Obviously, as a Grey Warden, she's expected to blah blah recruit some young morons to get killed by either the Darkspawn or the Joining or the fact that they're Wardens and Wardens are marked for death. Whoopee. Duncan owes her big for this. She's back in the fucking Circle tower, she swore she'd never come here again even if they tried to drag her back with wild horses.

Greagoir is there. Fucking typical. And he's got his husband with him. "Hello, Greagoir," she grits out as she dismounts. "Hello, Irving."

"Hello, Jahenna," smiles Greagoir genially. "I assume you're not here to rejoin our ranks?"

She spits on the ground. "Very funny, you worthless creep. I'm here to recruit mages for the Wardens. There's a Blight on, in case you hadn't heard for some reason. Speaking of which, how's the weather up your own ass?"

Okay, there are aspects of being a Warden that she likes. Such as having carte blanche to tell people to go fuck themselves.
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"Perhaps you'd like to meet some of our more promising young mages and students," Irving suggests diplomatically.

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Jahenna flashes him a charming smile. "Oh, certainly."

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"I know just who I want you to meet first," he says. "Her name is Metella Wermod and she's something of a prodigy. If you can convince her to join your cause, she could be a great help to you."

And Metella has the patience of a saint and the willpower of a small mountain, and will not be upset or offended or terrified by having to deal with the Grey Warden.
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"Bring me the child. I'll try not to reduce her to a puddle of quivering jelly."

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"I don't think that will be a problem," says First Enchanter Irving, smiling slightly.

He fetches Metella.
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Metella appears to be some indeterminate age probably between fifteen and twenty, and she is wearing robes appropriate to a fully graduated mage.

"Hello," she says politely.
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"Hello. Tell me, is it your fondest ambition to kill horrible monsters and save the world? Or at least get away from the fucking Templars and incidentally save the world. Feel free to actually answer, you're- wait." She glares at Greagoir and Irving. "You! Out! I need confidentiality for the interviews."

Greagoir rolls his eyes, but cooperates.
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Irving likewise departs.

"I'm probably going to be First Enchanter after Irving, so one of my fond ambitions is not to do anything that will conflict with that," says Metella. "I think joining the Grey Wardens would conflict with it a lot. If you just want me to follow you around and fling darkspawn off of cliffs, though, it's possible something could be arranged."
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"Sensible of you. Unfortunately, we're not looking for helpful mages; we have those. We're looking for people to join the Grey Wardens. There's a difference. What makes you think joining would interfere with Enchantering?"

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"I need to get better at lying if I'm going to do this recruitment shit. I'm not seeing much I can say to get you onboard. Any joy on the 'get away from the fucking Templars' angle?"
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"The Templars serve an important function," she says, just a touch too innocently.

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"Sorry. I think Irving mostly sent you to me to get you out of his hair and discourage you from getting too aggressive with the rest of us."

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"Any tips? I'm not exactly a social butterfly, over here. Aggressive is more or less my one setting."

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Metella thinks this over.

"I could go recruiting for you. I'm not aggressive at all."
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"Oh Maker, would you? At least for the Circle folks, you probably know them anyway. I can sit in the background and contribute information when necessary."

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"Okay. I don't promise you'll find any recruits this way, but I do promise any recruits you find won't run away the minute they have both feet on the shore."

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"I wasn't exactly expecting a full crop on my own. Why Duncan sent the ex-Templar with anger management issues to trawl the Circle tower, I will never- oh, wait, because he's a bastard and he has a nasty sense of humor, that's it."

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"No comment."

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Jahenna opens the door and sees that Greagoir and his husband have left behind a young Templar in their stead. "You, pup, bring in the next promising young whatever. And get a haircut, you're representing a dignified organization of utter bastards."

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Metella maintains a very Irving-like expression of diplomatic neutrality. The young Templar scurries off.

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He brings in a promising young mage who makes it quite clear that he does not wish to become a Warden, because he has things he would like to do that do not involve being dead.

As does the next girl.

As do the next endless procession of mages who would inexplicably rather survive to see their fiftieth birthday.

Thus goes the rest of the day for Jahenna and Metella. Jahenna makes the time just fly by, for herself at least, by imitating the objections of their interviewees in various unpleasant tones of voice.
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Metella apparently has infinite patience, because she doesn't get fed up with the mages and she doesn't get fed up with Jahenna's mockery. She is equally polite and practical with the thirtieth mage as with the first.

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"I admire your ability to not hate absolutely everyone in this tower," grumps Jahenna. "That last boy, Andraste's sainted tits. 'Oh, no, I'm afraid I can't save the world from the fucking Blight, I don't like sleeping on anything that isn't made of Orlesian silk.' What an utter cock."

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