One of those interesting people is standing shadily on a street corner and looking at nearby elves. One of his hands is in his pocket. He's unusually dark for someone in Ferelden. Unusually human, too, though he's hunched over so that it's not immediately obvious. And he's muttering to himself, which is a sure way to make people not want to look at someone.
The things he's muttering to himself aren't the ravings of a madman, though. "Not her, I'm sure she'd just rupture... couldn't get him... promising. Excuse me, young man?" he quavers in the voice of an old beggar. "Spare a silver?"
"Fuck!" yelps Tev. "What?!" He clutches the shield and backs away from the arcane bears.
It is very hard to interpret a twitching shield! But fuck it, he's running out of ideas here and he does not want to try punching these things. He hurls the shield at the nearest bear, just like throwing pie dishes in an alley.
The bear is decapitated by a silver-blue blur that bounces off two walls and the floor and comes whizzing back at him. He leaps into the air to catch it, and when he throws it at the next one he accounts for the bounce better, and it comes right back to his hand.
On the next throw, the shield takes the head off one bear and a leg off another. Then they're too close for throwing to work so well. He seats the shield on his arm and bashes one of the four remaining bears in the face with it, very very hard.
He hits another bear, this time with the edge. It cuts remarkably well for something that isn't actually sharp. And he has noticed it never cuts him when he touches the edge. Apparently it likes him back.
He shield-bashes the bear on his left and brings the shield around to slice at the other bear's face.
He looks around. Is it worth staying here any longer? Probably not. There might be more fucked-up magic bears.
Shirtless, barefoot, shield on his arm, he walks out.
In the street outside, there is a human. His skin is dark, his beard impressive. He has a sword and a dagger crossed over his back, and an unreasonable number of belts on his torso. He's being led around by Valendrian.
Valendrian takes a moment to recognize Tev. "Ah. Sentevlan. I... should really be surprised. I am not surprised. What in Andraste's name happened to you?"
"I... don't know," he says. "Some man pretending to be a beggar grabbed me off the street, and I woke up in a... horrible room. There were mages... blood mages, sacrificing whole cages of us... and then this happened," he gestures at his altered body.
Duncan sighs. "This is... troubling. But the Blight must take priority. I must go to Ostagar, but I will make sure the guards are informed of this and it is made clear that I expect results."
"The guards? Duncan, they would leave every elf in the city rotting in the streets but for the smell!"
"That may be true, old friend, but they know well enough to fear me. I will return from Ostagar in a few weeks, and if one elf has gone missing then the guards know there will be hell to pay. And I will tell Loghain of this; I know that I can trust him to defend the people of this realm."
"Who are you?"
"Tev Rasna," he says. "...Can I join?"
"Yeah, I think I weigh about three times what I did this morning," Tev says agreeably. "All right. You have yourself a recruit."
He shakes his head. "I could go get my change of clothes, but I don't think they fit me anymore. And I think the blood mages did something with my shoes. Do Grey Warden recruits get shoes?"
"I like my priceless artifact. But I'll take a sword if you'll teach me how to use it."