- 1 Dragon Age II
- 1.1 Alistair
- 1.2 Anders
- 1.3 Anders - After the Deep Roads
- 1.4 Anders - The Last Three Years
- 1.5 Aveline Vallen
- 1.6 Aveline - After the Deep Roads
- 1.7 Aveline - The Last Three Years
- 1.8 Bartrand Tethras
- 1.9 Bethany Hawke
- 1.10 Bethany - After the Deep Roads
- 1.11 Carver Hawke
- 1.12 Carver - After the Deep Roads
- 1.13 Knight-Captain Cullen
- 1.14 Fenris
- 1.15 Fenris - After the Deep Roads
- 1.16 Fenris - The Last Three Years
- 1.17 Flemeth
- 1.18 Grand Cleric Elthina
- 1.19 Hawke
- 1.20 The Hero of Ferelden
- 1.21 Isabela
- 1.22 Isabela - After the Deep Roads
- 1.23 Isabela - The Last Three Years
- 1.24 Viscount Marlowe Dumar
- 1.25 Knight-Commander Meredith
- 1.26 Merrill
- 1.27 Merrill - After the Deep Roads
- 1.28 Merrill - The Last Three Years
- 1.29 First Enchanter Orsino
- 1.30 Varric Tethras
- 1.31 Varric - After the Deep Roads
- 1.32 Varric - The Last Three Years
- 1.33 Zevran Arainai
- 2 Downloadable content
Dragon Age II
Cailan and that the existence of an unknown bastard was a lie imposed upon the people to overthrow Queen Anora. As such, Alistair's rule has been plagued with trouble... both within his own lands as well as with neighboring Orlais. The Blight greatly weakened Ferelden, and many believe that a renewal of the long-standing rivalry between the two nations is inevitable.
If the Martyr (preset) is selected or imported from a save where Alistair and Anora agreed to marry and rule jointly:
King Alistair Theirin was crowned ruler of Ferelden after the end of the Fifth Blight; his people consider him a hero for fighting against the darkspawn as a Grey Warden. Few Wardens have ever left the secretive order, and he is the only of those who went on to rule a nation; Queen Anora, daughter of the legendary Teyrn Loghain, rules at his side. Although Ferelden has prospered under their reign, it was greatly weakened by the Blight. Tensions with neighboring Orlais have been high, and many believe a renewal of their long-standing conflict is inevitable.
If imported from a save where Alistair remains a Grey Warden:
A hero of the recent Fifth Blight, the Grey Warden Alistair is credited alongside the Hero of Ferelden with slaying the Archdemon and sparing Thedas the ravages of the darkspawn. Rumor has it that he is an heir to the Fereldan throne, but that he turned it down in deference to Queen Anora, daughter to the traitorous Teryn Loghain.
If imported from a save where Alistair married and ruled together with the Hero of Ferelden:
King Alistair Theirin was crowned ruler of his kingdom after the end of the Fifth Blight, with the legendary Hero of Ferelden reigning as his queen. Both former Grey Wardens are wildly popular in their homeland, though some claim Alistair is not of Theirin blood and that his bloodline as a king's bastard son is a lie imposed on Ferelden to depose Queen Anora. Thus, the royals' rule has been plagued with trouble, both within the kingdom as well as with neighboring Orlais. The Blight greatly weakened Ferelden, and many believe a renewal of the long-standing rivalry between the two nations is inevitable.
If the No Compromise (preset) is selected or imported from a save where Alistair is exiled:
Once a Grey Warden, and rumored to be the bastard son of King Maric of Ferelden, Alistair turned down the throne and abandoned his order at the height of the Fifth Blight in Ferelden. He has slipped into anonymity, living down his disgrace in a drunken stupor in the Free Marches.
"Magic is a tool, same as a bow or sword. Would you cut off a child's hand to ensure he never wields one in anger?"
Anders has a rocky history with the Circle of Magi. Taken from his family when his talents first manifested, Anders was still a boy the first time he ran away from the Circle. Recaptured and returned dozens of times, Anders was still considered only a reckless scamp by First Enchanter Irving, who thought his easy temper and sense of humor made him no true threat. But during his final escape, Anders befriended the Warden Commander of Amaranthine and accepted an offer to become a Grey Warden.
Life as a Warden changed him, introducing him to the free Fade spirit called Justice, who slowly convinced Anders to turn his attention beyond his personal suffering. Infused with Justice's fervor, Anders offered to merge with the spirit in the name of mage freedom, starting them both down a dangerous path that turned the purity of Justice into the unthinking hatred of Vengeance.
Anders - After the Deep Roads
In the past three years, Anders has become more reclusive, verging on paranoid. When not with the Champion, he spends his time among the Fereldan refugees in Darktown, healing their ills and counting on their loyalty to protect him from curious templars. After his friend Karl was made Tranquil, then killed, Anders was convinced that the Chantry's entire structure must be overturned to free mages completely from their control. He has joined a group of like-minded apostates who are slowly wearing away Kirkwall's Circle by helping other mages escape. The spirit of Vengeance inside him has manifested more strongly, making it nearly impossible for him to control himself when fighting templars.
Anders - The Last Three Years
Outcome of Anders' companion quest Dissent...
If Ella was killed:
The past three years has seen Anders cross the edge from moodiness into open paranoia. Increasingly, his inner struggle against the spirit Vengeance has boiled over into his dealings with the rest of the world. It's clear he is losing this fight. More determined than ever to see the mages of Thedas freed, Anders has taken to spending long hours cloistered with ancient Tevinter texts, adding more layers to his already lofty plans for overthrowing the Chantry.
If Ella survives:
After his attack on Ella, Anders lost interest in the cause of mage revolution. Convinced he was no better than an abomination, Anders was determined to gain mastery over the spirit inside him... or die trying. It is increasingly apparent that he is losing this struggle. Prone to wild mood swings between deep melancholy and manic determination, Anders has again taken up the mantle of mage freedom—though it is unclear whether this decision came from Anders or Justice.
Hawke's status as Champion has protected Anders from the attention of the templars, despite his increasing notoriety. Though they have lived openly together for some time, Anders remains uncomfortable in the spotlight Hawke's presence has cast him into. In private, though, he remains a tender and devoted lover; he has repeatedly declared that Hawke is the only reason he's retained any sanity at all.
- Main article: Codex entry: Aveline Vallen
Aveline was born in Orlais, but she never knew the country. Her father, Benoit du Lac, was a chevalier who lost his patron to the game of intrigue. He fled to Ferelden while Aveline was an infant, and though his holdings were meager, he was determined she would have the life he had lost: she would become a knight, no matter the cost. He eventually sold everything to sponsor Aveline into King Cailan's service.
Knightly skills seemed bred into Aveline's bones, but she had her doubts—starting with her namesake, Ser Aveline. The first female knight of Orlais was orphaned, mocked for her looks and murdered when she dared stand with men in tournament. Her glory lies in tragedy, but the living Aveline doesn't revere sacrifice: a principled death is still a death. Her father was proud of her, but she would never be the knight he wished for.
Aveline married Wesley Vallen while serving in the Fereldan army. They were kindred spirits and determined guardians. His death during the Blight scarred her—not just his loss, but that she failed to protect him. Aveline has healed in the past year, but she has yet to forgive herself. Accordingly, she is fiercely protective of the Hawkes and Hawke. They share a bond in loss, a connection she cherishes but will not allow to be repeated.
Aveline - After the Deep Roads
Outcome of The Way It Should Be...
Since the adventure in the Deep Roads, Aveline has settled into life as the captain of the guard. She has removed the stain of Captain Jeven's corruption and turned the guardsmen into effective enforcers of law and order.If the quest was not completed :
Since the adventure in the Deep Roads, Aveline has redoubled her efforts in the city guard. The previous captain left suddenly, and while a Fereldan could not be promoted outright, Aveline's military experience made her an "adequate choice" for the captain of the guard in Seneschal Bran's estimation.
Becoming captain of the guard title should have brought Aveline stability, but she has instead found herself taxed by having so many people under her care. She is very protective of the people she commands, to the point of training each guardsman herself and personally reinforcing otherwise simple patrols. Injury rates are lower than ever before, but the guards are beginning to feel smothered.
Aveline is utterly dedicated to her job, leaving no time for anything beyond the occasional sidetrack with Hawke—even that is an excuse to watch over people she cares about. She is a guardian in every waking moment, and she doesn't seem to know how to put down the weight she carries.
Aveline - The Last Three Years
Outcome of Aveline's relationship with Donnic during The Long Road (Dragon Age II)...
Thanks to the Champion's actions, Aveline and Donnic Hendyr were married a year ago in a simple ceremony on the Hawke estate. They honeymooned in Orlais, the only time that Aveline has visited the country of her namesake. The pair has since settled into a happy marriage. Although she remains his captain and he her guardsman, Aveline now strictly divides her personal and private life.
She is no less driven to keep her guardsmen safe, but Donnic provides another perspective, and she is now giving her guard the authority they need to truly serve Kirkwall. As a force for law and order, the guard has never been more respected. This brings its own challenges, however, as some among the templars would prefer that the guard be under their direct command.If Aveline doesn't marry Donnic:
It is three years since the Qunari uprising, and Guard-Captain Aveline is as driven as ever. Her guards could give a Fereldan battalion a run for their coin, and she commands their undying respect; however, all would agree that she's the hardest captain they have ever served. Aveline takes that as a compliment, although it is not always intended as such. She knows it, but accepts it as necessary for the greater good, both theirs and that of Kirkwall.Being captain of the guard is an all-consuming position that she wouldn't give up for the world, although some in the templars would prefer that her guard had a lesser presence in keeping order. At the least, they would prefer that Aveline be more accepting of their oversight. Her association with the Champion has helped dissuade them, but pressure is mounting.
"Half of Kirkwall wants to be my best friend right now."
The history of noble House Tethras stretches back to the foundation of Orzammar. The memories say that three times, a child of House Tethras took the office of Assembly Steward. They held appointments in the Shaperate of Memories and the Shaperate of Golems. But no longer.
In the second year of the reign of King Endrin Aeducan, Lord Andvar Tethras was found guilty before the Assembly of willfully manipulating Proving matches in favor of his House. For this affront to the Ancestors, he and all his House were sentenced to exile on the surface. Andvar died a mere five years later, leaving behind his Lady Ilsa, ten-year-old Bartrand, and two-year-old Varric.
Exile, surface life, and the loss of her husband conspired against Lady Ilsa, who took to drink, leaving young Bartrand to manage what was left of House Tethras.
By the time he was fifteen, Bartrand had doubled his family's fortune. The disgrace of House Tethras fueled his ambition and his once-noble title gave him an instant place among the kalnas, the old money elite of the Dwarven Merchants Guild; he used it to build alliances and business ventures as if he were a member of the Orzammar Assembly.
By the time Lady Ilsa died, Bartrand had made the Tethras family one of the Guild's most influential, but wealth and power on the surface couldn't sate him. He began to court alliances with the wealthiest ascendant families, branching into banking and mercenary companies. Guild members mutter that nothing will satisfy Bartrand but a complete reconstruction of House Tethras' estate in Orzammar--down to the rivers of lava--built in Kirkwall.
Hawke's younger sister, Bethany, died during the family's flight from Lothering, leaving Hawke and Bethany's twin brother, Carver, as the only surviving children. Like Hawke, Bethany was an apostate mage in hiding from the Circle since childhood. Protecting Hawke and Bethany from the templars became the defining fact of the family's life, forcing them to move frequently and live well below their means in small hamlets in Lothering. Bethany was close to her eldest sibling and idolized and envied the way Hawke embraced magic, but she could never give up her resentment of being different and fear for what their future would hold.If Bethany survives Lothering:
"I was just hoping it would be different here in Kirkwall. We're not running away. We're coming home."Even growing up as an apostate has not dimmed Bethany's faith and sunny nature, though it has colored her view of the world. Bethany wishes above all else to be "normal." She appreciates the trouble her family took to keep her out of the Circle, but the running, hiding, and constant fear have taken their toll. Though she would never admit so to her mother--not after all she sacrificed to protect her--Bethany sometimes wonders whether she would be better off in the Circle. At least there she would be with other mages, confident she'd be serving the will of the Maker and not defying a millennium of religious teachings. Still, her first loyalty is to her family; despite her doubts, she gladly embraces her magic if it keeps them safe. She has a teasing rivalry with her twin, Carver, and greatly respects Hawke.
Bethany - After the Deep Roads
Bethany communicates often with her family since entering the Circle, and she is adjusting to her new life with ease. For the first time, she can study magic without watching over her shoulder. After passing her much-delayed Harrowing, she took a senior position within the Circle, teaching and mentoring the newest apprentices. Bethany is surprised at how many templars are honest Andrastians, who believe they serve the Maker and the people by keeping mages from using blood magic. However, this up-close look at the templars has also shown her the abuses that inevitably occur when one group of people is given life-and-death power over another. Bethany supports the Circle as it is, but this grows harder as Knight-Commander Meredith clamps down more tightly.If Bethany was taken into the Deep Roads Expedition with Anders present:
Since joining the Grey Wardens, Bethany has had little contact with her family. Resentful that her sibling escaped the Deep Roads unscathed while she nearly died, Bethany communicates only with their mother, relaying little beyond the fact that she is alive and continues to travel with the Warden Stroud. Her responsibilities rarely bring her back to the Kirkwall area; she usually patrols deep into the Free Marches or across the border in Ferelden, the only member of the Hawke family to return to their homeland.
Carver grew up surrounded by magic he couldn't truly understand. He cared deeply for his family, but sometimes felt like the stupidest person in the room. Carver foundered in Lothering, caught between the gifts of his apostate sister, Bethany, and the growing skill of his more focused sibling, Hawke.
But even as Carver groused about his lot, he remained dedicated to protecting those he loved. He didn't think twice about sacrificing himself to save his mother during the flight from the darkspawn, and although Carver struggled to find his way in life, there is gratification in knowing his death had purpose.If Carver survives Lothering:
"A hundred ways to run, and we choose backward. Whatever you say, but chasing an old name isn't really starting over."
Strong and strapping, Carver is a skilled warrior set on proving himself, although it's not always clear who he is trying to impress. The son and sibling of mages, he grew up surrounded by magic he couldn't truly understand—and he feels like something was expected that he could never deliver. He cares deeply for his family, but sometimes feels like the stupidest person in the room.Carver foundered in Lothering. He blamed his lack of direction on not wanting to draw attention to his family of apostates at home. After his father died, he started down a military path; however, the Blight and rout at Ostagar ended this career almost before it could start. While he knows that swift flight was the only reasonable course in the face of the darkspawn advance, he almost would rather have stood and fought. Doomed though the effort was, facing the horde had purpose—something Carver had been searching for.
Carver - After the Deep Roads
Carver seldom contacts his family since joining the templars. He gives excuses of duty and training, but his words are those of a man still uncertain of his choice. He has little in common with others of the order, having come from a family so steeped in magic. And while he is certain that regulating the Circle is as much about protecting mages as it is controlling them, he has seen disturbing abuses of power. The purpose he has found in service is strained by the blind hate some of his superiors possess. There is good work to be done, but the path is more winding than he had imagined.If Carver was taken into the Deep Roads Expedition with Anders present:
Carver rarely contacts his family since joining the Grey Wardens. His duties have taken him places even a soldier of Ferelden would never have seen. Despite his freedom and authority, Carver sees becoming a Warden as another decision that was out of his control - although the choice to be in harm's way was certainly his. If pressed, he would admit that his grudge is as much about familiarity as it is about family. Even between Blights, the Grey Warden oath is a heavy burden to bear - accepting it can be a long process.
Knight-Captain Cullen was one of the few templars who survived the incident at the Circle of Magi in Ferelden. The possessed blood mage Uldred took over the tower, and in his madness, he filled it with summoned demons and abominations. Cullen was imprisoned, tortured, and forced to watch the slaughter of his fellow templars. The ordeal shook him, and he emerged from it convinced that even templars fail to see how dangerous mages can be.
After Cullen returned to his duties, it became clear that he would go to any lengths to enforce the Chantry's rule. His zeal troubled Knight-Commander Greagoir, who feared it unwise to let Cullen watch over the men and women he deemed responsible for his torment.
Greagoir sent Cullen to serve under Knight-Commander Meredith in Kirkwall, and Meredith found Cullen's view of mages similar to her own. Of her company, only Cullen had seen mages' potentially terrifying power firsthand, and she believed he could influence the other templars' views. Consequently, Cullen rose quickly through the ranks to become Knight-Captain and Meredith's second-in-command.
If the Warden was a female mage in Dragon Age: Origins...
For some time, a rumor has circulated in the Gallows that Knight-Captain Cullen once fell in love with a young mage from the Circle of Ferelden. The mage was recruited into the Grey Wardens and went on to become the Hero of Ferelden. This rumor seems to cause Cullen pain, though no one knows if it is the pain of lost, unrequited love, or if Cullen is shamed by having had feelings for a mage, of all things.
Knight-Commander Meredith maintains that the rumor is untrue and punishes anyone caught repeating it.
"Even those who live without chains are still bound: by fear, by tradition, by honor. Slaves dream of freedom, but I have found free men dream of it even more."
Fenris was a slave—a bodyguard to Magister Danarius of the Tevinter Imperium—until his escape several years ago. He speaks little of his past, saying only that he most recently came to Kirkwall from Tantervale in the north. The markings on his skin are akin to runecrafting: made of lyrium and ink, they suffuse Fenris's flesh with a power even he does not fully understand. The process of their creation was painful, and in unguarded moments, Fenris attempts to control the agony that lingers still. Even so, the markings enhance his fighting skill and have made him a unique and formidable warrior.
Fenris - After the Deep Roads
Since the adventure into the Deep Roads, Fenris has remained in Kirkwall, maintaining a residence in Danarius's abandoned mansion. That it doesn't truly belong to him has aroused the interest of curious neighbors, and thus, the city guard. Aveline has so far deflected their inquiries on Fenris's behalf; however, she's told him in no uncertain terms that the situation will not remain that way forever.
Though seemingly unconcerned about the house, Fenris has become increasingly nervous over the last year. He doesn't know if he's actually free from pursuit, or if his former master is planning something even worse. He tries not to think about it, taking pleasure in having a home for the first time in his life, even though his contact with anyone outside of the jobs he takes as a mercenary is very limited.
Fenris - The Last Three Years
Hawke's Relationship status...
Fenris has remained in his Hightown mansion for the past three years. However, he's become increasingly restless and occasionally notes that it may almost be time for him to move on. Danarius has never reappeared, and Fenris assumes that he is now free to do as he wishes... but what will that be? For now, he seems content to stay at Hawke's side for the sake of his old debt, although things are bound to change at some point.If Hawke is in rivalry with Fenris:
Three years ago, after confronting Hadriana, Fenris learned of his long-lost sister. He has spoken little of it, though it clearly still preys on his mind. He has not left Kirkwall to pursue the matter, remaining in Danarius's mansion even though it is common knowledge in Hightown that "a friend of the Champion" lives within. Fenris finds his high profile in the city both intriguing and alarming. Over the last year, he has spoken more than once of leaving Kirkwall for good; if not for the debt he owes to Hawke, he would likely already have moved on.
If Hawke is in a romance with Fenris...
As for the night Fenris and Hawke shared three years ago, he refuses to speak more of it. However, it's clear he has not forgotten, although any lingering feelings remain unresolved. Whether that will change remains to be seen.
"You are required to do nothing, least of all believe."
Ages ago, legend says Bann Conobar took to wife a beautiful young woman who harbored a secret talent for magic: Flemeth of Highever. And for a time they lived happily, until the arrival of a young poet, Osen, who captured the lady's heart with his verse.
They turned to the Chasind tribes for help and hid from Conobar's wrath in the Wilds, until word came to them that Conobar lay dying: His last wish was to see Flemeth's face one final time.
The lovers returned, but it was a trap. Conobar killed Osen, and imprisoned Flemeth in the highest tower of the castle. In grief and rage, Flemeth worked a spell to summon a spirit into this world to wreak vengeance upon her husband. Vengeance, she received, but not as she planned. The spirit took possession of her, turning Flemeth into an abomination. A twisted, maddened creature, she slaughtered Conobar and all his men, and fled back into the Wilds.
For a hundred years, Flemeth plotted, stealing men from the Chasind to sire monstrous daughters: Horrific things that could kill a man with fear. These Korcari witches led an army of Chasind from the Wilds to strike at the Alamarri tribes. They were defeated by the hero Cormac, and all the witches burned, so they say, but even now the Wilders whisper that Flemeth lives on in the marsh, and she and her daughters steal those men who come too near.
If the Warden kills Flemeth (appears only in Dragon Age: Origins)...
She was slain at Morrigan's behest. At least apparently...
Grand Cleric Elthina
"We will never have peace unless we try to understand one another."
Revered Mother Elthina assumed the mantle of grand cleric almost twenty years ago; she is responsible for the spiritual well-being of the southern Free Marches (everything south of Starkhaven and the Minanter River). She has long been a calming presence in the city, renowned for her kindness and generosity. People frequently turn to her to mediate disputes—particularly those involving the powerful Templar Order, over whom she holds authority as the Chantry's ranking representative.
Some claim that Elthina's advanced age has rendered her ineffective, and that she allows Knight-Commander Meredith more leeway with each passing year. Some are calling on the new Divine, Justinia V, to appoint a replacement—but they do so quietly, for Elthina is by far the most beloved priest the city has ever known.
If Hawke is a warrior or rogue:
The son/daughter of Malcolm Hawke and Leandra Amell, Hawke has lived in many places throughout Ferelden. His/Her father and younger sister, Bethany, were apostate mages; thus, the family was constantly on the move, avoiding templar hunters. Ten years ago, the family settled in the village of Lothering, building a home on the outskirts and making a life where they wouldn't forever be on the run. Though Leandra worried constantly that the templars would one day catch up with them, Malcolm kept his abilities a secret and taught his daughter to do the same.
He died three years ago, leaving Hawke responsible for the welfare of his/her mother and younger siblings. When the Blight began, Hawke and Carver quickly enlisted in King Cailan's regiment. The horde spilling from the Korcari Wilds meant their home would be quickly overrun if the darkspawn were not defeated immediately. However, the Battle of Ostagar ended with the betrayal and death of King Cailan. Hawke and Carver barely escaped the chaos with their lives, and returned to Lothering to get their mother and Bethany out with only moments to spare...
If Hawke is a mage:
The son/daughter of Malcolm Hawke and Leandra Amell, Hawke has lived in many places throughout Ferelden. His/her father was a mage whose gifts were passed onto both Hawke and Bethany, Malcolm's younger daughter. Malcolm refused to submit himself to the Chantry's rule; he kept his abilities a secret and taught his children/daughters to do the same. Therefore, the family was constantly on the move to avoid templar hunters. Ten years ago, the family settled in the village of Lothering, building a home on the outskirts and making a life where they wouldn't forever be on the run. Though Leandra worried constantly that the templars would one day catch up with them, Malcolm's teachings were sufficient to keep them safe.
He died three years ago, leaving Hawke responsible for the welfare of his/her mother and younger siblings. When the Blight began, Carver enlisted in King Cailan's regiment, saying the horde spilling from the Korcari Wilds meant their home would be quickly overrun if the darkspawn were not defeated immediately. Hawke remained in Lothering to safeguard the family. Carver appeared on their doorstep almost a month later, exhausted and injured. King Cailan had been betrayed and slain at Ostagar, and the horde was advancing on Lothering. Though Hawke and the others were making plans to leave, they fled their home before they were fully prepared... and it may still be too late.
The Hero of Ferelden
If the Hero of Ferelden (preset) is selected or imported from a Human Noble background from DA:O:
The Hero of Ferelden was the younger son/the daughter of Bryce Cousland, Teyrn of Highever. When Arl Rendon Howe's forces attacked Castle Cousland and murdered most of the Cousland family, the Hero escaped to safety with Grey Warden Commander Duncan, who then recruited him/her into the order.
If the Martyr (preset) is selected or imported from a Dalish Elf background from DA:O:
The Hero of Ferelden once belonged to a clan of Dalish Elves. An encounter with a tainted magical mirror corrupted the Hero, and only the Grey Wardens held the cure. To save the Hero's life, the clan gave him/her up to Grey Warden Commander Duncan and the order.
If No Compromise (preset) is selected or imported from a Dwarf Noble background from DA:O:
The Hero of Ferelden was born to noble House Aeducan of Orzammar, the second son/the daughter of King Endrin Aeducan. After being charged with fratricide, the Hero was exiled to the Deep Roads. There, he/she met Grey Warden Commander Duncan, who then recruited him/her into the order.
If imported from a City Elf background from DA:O:
The Hero of Ferelden grew up in Denerim's impoverished elven alienage. A bitter clash with a Denerim noble during the Hero's wedding resulted in the Hero facing arrest by the city guards. The Grey Warden Commander Duncan recruited the Hero, saving him/her from a certain death sentence.
If imported from a Mage background from DA:O:
The Hero of Ferelden belonged to the Circle of Magi in Ferelden, and resided in the tower at Lake Calenhad for most of their life. First Enchanter Irving recommended the Hero to Grey Warden Commander Duncan; shortly after the Hero's Harrowing, Duncan recruited him/her into the order.
If imported from a Dwarf Commoner background from DA:O:
The Hero of Ferelden was born casteless in the slums of Orzammar. He/She impersonated a man of Warrior Caste in Orzammar's Provings, a crime punishable by death. However, the Hero's showing in the arena impressed Grey Warden Commander Duncan so much that he recruited the Hero before he/she could be executed.
Outcome of The Final Battle...
If the Hero of Ferelden (preset) is selected or imported from a save where the Hero survives through performing the Dark Ritual:
The Hero fought and killed the Archdemon, and lived to tell the tale. With the Archdemon gone, the darkspawn ranks broke, and the horde was easily routed.
If the Martyr (preset) is selected or imported from a save where the Hero makes the ultimate sacrifice:
The Hero fought and killed the Archdemon, making the ultimate sacrifice and dying to save Ferelden. With the Archdemon gone, the darkspawn ranks broke, and the horde was easily routed.
If No Compromise (preset) is selected or imported from a save where either Alistair or Loghain makes the sacrifice:
The armies the Hero had raised killed the Archdemon. With the Archdemon gone, the darkspawn ranks broke, and the horde was easily routed.
After the Blight...
If the Hero of Ferelden (preset), No Compromise (preset) is selected or imported from a save where the Hero survived:
After ending the Blight, the Hero of Ferelden took up the mantle of Warden-Commander and began the task of rebuilding the order in Ferelden.
If imported from a save where a Female Human Noble married Alistair and became Queen (Appears along with the Warden-Commander entry):
After ending the Blight, the Hero of Ferelden was wed to King Alistair and crowned queen of Ferelden. She and the king now rule the country together.
After ending the Blight, the Hero of Ferelden was wed to Queen Anora — he now bears the title of prince-consort.
"I'm Isabela. Previously 'Captain' Isabela. Sadly, without my ship, the title rings a bit hollow."
Isabela is vague about her days as a sea captain, though it's obvious she was involved with piracy and smuggling. Shortly after the Blight ended, Isabela's ship was caught in a storm near the Wounded Coast. The vessel was destroyed, and Isabela feels lucky to have escaped with her life. Now she's stranded in the Free Marches, spending most of her time in the Hanged Man tavern.
Isabela also reveals that she was born in Rivain, but spent many years in Antiva. When asked about those years, she changes the subject.
Isabela - After the Deep Roads
Isabela spent the the past several years trying to track down the relic that she lost in the shipwreck. She believes that it's still in Kirkwall, though why she thinks so is a mystery. Despite her insistence that she's keeping a low profile to avoid her old employer, Castillon, Isabela seems to go out of her way to cause trouble. Recently, one of her duels evolved into a bar brawl that then spilled out into Lowtown. Involving over twenty people, the fracas caused a great deal of damage to several merchant stalls.
Isabela spent the next two weeks in the brig. Guard-Captain Aveline allowed her release, but not before extracting a promise—that Isabela would not duel on public property again. Whether Isabela actually keeps this promise remains to be seen.
Isabela - The Last Three Years
Hawke's Relationship status...
If Hawke is in friendship with Isabela:
Isabela's return during the Qunari crisis was surprising, most of all to Isabela, herself. She blamed Hawke for inspiring her to such foolishness, and seemed to regret exposing herself to danger. After the Arishok was killed, Isabela was seen in deep conversation with Hawke. The exchange ended as Isabela walked off, saying, "You're reading too much into it."
If Hawke is in a romance with Isabela:
Isabela's return during the Qunari crisis was surprising, most of all to Isabela, herself. She blamed Hawke for inspiring her to such foolishness, and seemed to regret exposing herself to danger. After the Arishok was killed, a tense exchange between Isabela and Hawke ended with Isabela leaving, saying, "I didn't do it for them. I did it for you. It was always about you."
When Isabela returned during the Qunari crisis, Tome of Koslun in hand, she knew she would have to answer to Hawke for her previous betrayal. After the Arishok was killed, Isabela was seen engaged in a heated argument with Hawke. It ended with Isabela storming off after letting loose a torrent of profanity.
That was the last anyone in Kirkwall saw of her for some time. Many believed that she had left the Free Marches for good. Then, as abruptly as she had departed, Isabela appeared one day in her usual spot in the Hanged Man, drinking as though she had never been gone.
Viscount Marlowe Dumar
- Main article: Codex entry: Viscount Marlowe Dumar
What happened to Viscount Perrin Threnhold was a travesty. I served in the Keep, and my blood boils when I hear people call him a tyrant. He was a good man who tried his best to free Kirkwall from the control of those who use power for their own purposes. It's always been that way here, hasn't it? Long ago it was the Imperium. Then it was the Qunari, then the Orlesians, now the templars... when have we ever ruled ourselves? He tried to kick those templar bastards out and give us real freedom, and what did it get him?
Now the Chantry has chosen Lord Marlowe Dumar as his replacement. After weeks and weeks of arguing, after telling the nobility that they would be choosing their viscount, after everyone saying it was time to use a new title—why not "king"? Why keep using the name imposed by the Orlesians? And after all that, the Chantry chose him. I suppose I can see why—everyone thinks he has the spine of a jellyfish, and it does seem that way.
Truly, he has the templars on one side, the nobility on the other, and everyone expects him to solve all their problems—yet he has no power to actually accomplish it. He keeps the peace as best he can, and I think he does a good job even if no one else does. And he loves that sad little boy. I see the way young Saemus looks at his father, and I feel for him. Locked up in the Keep with no other children, watching his father be put down by every self-important windbag that walks into the great hall... it makes me miss the days of Perrin Threnhold, even if they were chaotic. We can only hope that one day Saemus gives this city the legacy it deserves.
—Excerpt from a letter by an unknown servant, found in the Gallows vaults 9:28 Dragon
"I have sympathy for the mages. They bear a terrible curse—one that endangers not only themselves but innocents as well. We allow them freedom only at the risk of unleashing them upon the unwary."
Knight-Commander Meredith Stannard is a native of Kirkwall. An orphan who joined the Templar Order when quite young, she worked her way up the ranks with sheer determination. She is credited with removing the previous viscount, Perrin Threnhold, from his position after he attempted to have the templars expelled from the city in 9:21 Dragon. The acting knight-commander was arrested and executed, and Meredith led a group of templars into the heart of the Keep to capture Threnhold. He was tried and imprisoned three days later by Grand Cleric Elthina and died from poisoning two years later. Meredith was subsequently elevated to her current position.
Many say the templars fought only to preserve their own position in Kirkwall, not to oppose Threnhold's tyranny. Others believe Meredith has always held the moral high ground, even if not all approve of her methods. For now, she enjoys the grand cleric's full support and has free rein in Kirkwall as the commander of its most powerful military force.
As each generation passes, magic becomes more rare among the Dalish. As the gift dies out, talented children are moved between clans so that every Keeper has a successor, and no clan is in danger of being left without guidance.
Merrill was born to the Alerion clan, which wandered the hills of Nevarra. She was the third child of the clan with the ancient gift born to her--when the next Arlathvhen (gathering of the clans) occurred, she was given to the Sabrae clan to be First to Keeper Marethari. Merrill was just four years old.
Merrill - After the Deep Roads
"It's a Keeper's place to remember! Even the dangerous things."
Since her arrival in Kirkwall's elven alienage, Merrill has had difficulty adjusting. Her neighbors ignore her existence, and even the most determined socialites in Lowtown cross the street to avoid her. She also gets lost frequently, a matter that doesn't seem to be solving itself through time or familiarity with the city; on separate occasions, she has accidentally found herself in the viscount's bathing room, the chantry airing cupboard, and in the middle of a dog racing track in Darktown.
Merrill - The Last Three Years
If Hawke is in friendship or rivalry with Merrill...
"Everything I do, everything I've ever done, was for the good of my people."
Merrill spends more and more of her time locked away in her house in the alienage with her mirror; she leaves only to buy food, which she does so rarely that Varric has taken to having produce delivered to her door. At least she no longer gets lost as she wanders the city.
If Hawke is in a romance with Merrill...
"If you hadn't come to Sundermount that day... I can't imagine where I'd be now."
Merrill moved into Hawke's Mansion in Hightown ― and not as a servant, much to the horror of the neighbours. She further scandalized the neighborhood by wandering around with no shoes on, picking the flowers out of other people's gardens, and cooing cheerfully at their attack dogs. Several angry letters were sent to the Champion and the seneschal, but the situation remains unchanged.She continues to return to her ramshackle house in the alienage, spending a great deal of time working on her mirror.
First Enchanter Orsino
"You deny us our freedom so that you may sleep better at night, but I say it is a restless and undeserved slumber."
First Enchanter Orsino is an elf from the Free Marches city of Ansburg who was brought to the Gallows when he was very young. Some claim he became the youngest first enchanter to hold the position in Kirkwall not by his own merit, but because nobody else wanted it. He would call that cynicism—someone must advocate for the mages, after all. Even if the job is thankless, the alternative would be for Kirkwall's mages to have no advocate whatsoever. For the past five years, Orsino has had constant—sometimes very public—disputes with Knight-Commander Meredith. The common belief amongst the populace is that he is a troublemaker... possibly a dangerous one.
"I know everyone in this city worth knowing."
Varric was born three years after his father's exile from Orzammar, into the world of the Merchants Guild: the Ancestors never spoke and Paragons were the heroes in tall tales; the number of dances a kalna lady gave to a lowborn ascendant boy were more pivotal than the reign of kings.
While Bartrand ran the businesses and drove House Tethras ever higher up the social ladder, Varric looked after the family and their retainers. His mother, Lady Ilsa, suffered terribly from the trauma of her disgrace and exile, finding solace in liquor and smoke. It fell to her younger son to try to curb the worst of her drunken rages, to keep her from becoming a matter of public scandal, and to care for her when she fell ill from her excesses.
Though he is famous throughout the Merchants Guild for his stories, Varric speaks rarely of himself or his family. Most of Kirkwall knows him; everyone has bought him a drink at least once--for the sake of his fictions rather than his family connections.
Varric - After the Deep Roads
"Bianca sends her regards."
Varric now occupies his brother's seat in the Dwarven Merchants Guild—technically. He rarely attends Guild meetings and is hardly ever seen actually occupying the chair in their hall that belongs to House Tethras. He prefers to run the Tethras financial empire from his suite at the Hanged Man. And he never replies to his mail.
Varric - The Last Three Years
"There's power in stories. That's all history is: the best tales. The ones that last. Might as well be mine."
Outcome of Family Matter...
The death of his elder brother forced Varric to take up the mantle of House Tethras officially;
however, according to the updated official Kirkwall and Merchants Guild documentation, the family businesses are run by nonexistent uncles, aunts, cousins, and household pets.
We are in danger, friend. Two of the seven Guildmasters are already in Zevran Arainai's pocket, and the Guildmaster of Rialto is dead. While no proof exists, we both know he was involved whether he claims the deed or not. They should have released him when they discovered he lived, "honor of the Antivan Crows" be damned. What option do we have now?
If the Warden didn't romance Zevran...
After centuries of unity that have led us to rule a nation from the shadows and have placed kings and queens in our pockets, we are being torn apart from within by a single elf who didn't even succeed in his mission to kill the so-called Hero of Ferelden.
If the Warden romanced Zevran...
After centuries of unity that have led us to rule a nation from the shadows and have placed kings and queens in our pockets, we are being torn apart from within by a single elf who didn't even succeed in his mission. How could anyone have guessed that the Grey Warden would become his lover and support his crusade? That Zevran would help defeat the Blight and become a hero within the Crows, even as we branded him anathema?
The Guildmasters dismissed Zevran's threat without considering just how many assassins were similarly disaffected. Too many of our numbers have been cheated out of their rightful tithes, driven into hiding, or intimidated into silence... and somehow, Zevran is finding them all. You report that he is not in Antiva, but that isn't always the case. He appears in a city until our operatives find him and chase him out into Rivain or the Free Marches—and then we never hear from them again. We have both spoken to the remaining Guildmasters, and they have denied us. They are blind, and it makes me think maybe Zevran is right. Perhaps it is time for a change.
—From a half-burned letter found in a Treviso warehouse, 9:35 Dragon.
Divine Justinia V
- Main article: Codex entry: Divine Justinia V
- See also: Character: Divine Justinia V, Codex entry: Divine Justinia V (Inquisition)
Formerly the Revered Mother Dorothea of Orlais, Divine Justinia V rose to power after the death of Divine Beatrix III in the year 9:34 of the Dragon Age. Little is known of Dorothea's background before she joined the Chantry as an initiate. Within the Grand Cathedral, rivals suggest that her reticence in discussing her past means she's hiding something; few of her flock, however, can imagine her as anyone other than a gentle mother of obvious faith.
When Beatrix III was felled by a massive stroke, she survived just long enough to put forth Dorothea's name as a candidate for her replacement. Grand Clerics from throughout Thedas flocked to Orlais for the Grand Consensus, a private meeting between the heads of all Chantries to select the next Divine.
Though ritual demanded the decision be unanimous, servants attending the Consensus whispered of heated debate over Dorothea's suitability. Her "worldly" background and demonstrated forgiveness for sinners were held against her; ultimately, however, the will of Beatrix III prevailed, and Dorothea began her reign as Justinia V.
Empress Celene I of Orlais
Rumor and scandal surround the empress's rise to the throne, and it is difficult to separate truth from fiction. Celene is the daughter of the late Emperor Florian's youngest sister, and others in the family held stronger claims when Florian died. Court rumors at the time implied that Celene had her uncle assassinated then schemed against her older cousins to challenge their right to rule.
Regardless of how she came to the throne, Celene quickly proved that it was exactly where she belonged. The mad Florian's rule had brought the empire to the brink of collapse. Celene was its savior. Orlais has never been quite so peaceful or prosperous as it is now. The empress highly values education and learning and is an ardent patron of the arts. The aristocracy—in order to impress her—has followed suit, leading to a rebirth of Orlesian culture.
If the Warden was not in a romance with Leliana...
Many stories have been told of Leliana; some say she fought alongside the Hero of Ferelden against the Blight prior to serving at the right hand of the Divine. Even that is hearsay—the only thing known for certain is that the bard is often seen at the Divine's side in Val Royeaux. This has caused no small degree of alarm in the Chantry's inner circles: Does the Divine have a plan of her own? What might Leliana's part be? The truth remains to be seen.
If the Warden romanced Leliana...
Leliana is a legendary adventuress in Thedas, a heroine of the Fifth Blight and reportedly the Hero of Ferelden's lover. Some stories say she yet remains at the Hero of Ferelden's side, but other tales from Val Royeaux say she'd been spotted in the company of Divine Justinia. Rumors within the Chantry claim the Divine has a plan of her own—one that involves Leliana as her personal agent—but few know what such a plan might entail. Given that Leliana is a master storyteller, it's not impossible that these rumors are of her own creation. The truth remains to be seen.
If Leliana was killed by the Warden after the defiling of the Urn of Andraste...
There are many tales of Leliana, Orlesian adventuress and bard, the most recent being that she fought against the Fifth Blight. Some even say she died at the hands of the Hero of Ferelden. How she could be alive—and reportedly acting as an agent of the Divine—is unknown. Perhaps the story of her death is exaggerated... or perhaps the supposed place of her demise, the altar of the fabled Urn of Sacred Ashes, is also the place of her rebirth. The truth remains to be seen.
Many stories are told of Leliana; some say she fled the Blight in Ferelden only to serve as the right hand of Divine Justinia. The only fact known for certain is that the Orlesian bard is often seen at the Divine's side in Val Royeaux. This has caused no small degree of alarm in the Chantry's inner circles: Does the Divine have a plan of her own? What might Leliana's part be? The truth remains to be seen.
Duke Prosper de Montfort
Prosper de Montfort is a close personal friend of Empress Celene and a perennial fixture at the empress's annual Spring Fête. He spends most of his time outside Orlais either on personal business for the empress or vacationing at his estates in Nevarra and the Free Marches.
(Note: Titles other than lord (or lady) and emperor (or empress) were abolished during Emperor Kordilius [sic] Drakon's reign. Duke Prosper uses his title only in his private dealings or when he travels beyond Orlais's borders. At court, he is addressed as Lord Prosper de Montfort.)
—From Lifestyles of the Wealthy and Politically Influential, by Lady Jonquil Severin
"In the face of danger, sometimes the bravest thing is to stand back and trust that the Maker will see justice done."
Sebastian Vael is the only surviving son of the ruling family of Starkhaven, which was murdered in a violent coup d'etat. Sebastian cannot forget the irony that he still lives only because his family was so ashamed of his drinking and womanizing that they committed him to the Kirkwall Chantry against his will. After initially rejecting a priest's lifestyle, Sebastian was more surprised than anyone when he realized that his show of faith had turned real.
Since then, his belief in the Maker and His plan for Thedas have been unshakable. Embracing his new role, Sebastian took vows of poverty and chastity to become a sworn brother of the Chantry... until word of his family's deaths forced him to take up worldly concerns once again. Grand Cleric Elthina, Sebastian's mentor and friend, hopes to convince him to walk away from the struggle for Starkhaven and return to the good works of the Chantry.
Sebastian - After the Deep Roads
Sebastian has spent the past three years advancing his campaign to retake Starkhaven. He has been traveling extensively between Kirkwall and other Free Marches cities, attempting to recruit sufficient allies to build an army. With Hawke securing the Hawke family a place among Kirkwall's nobility, the two have crossed paths a few times, but an exiled prince like Sebastian has far better access than Hawke to the viscount and other heads of state. So far, though, few families have agreed to support Sebastian with actual troops, leaving him in the difficult position of trying to retake his city with no army.
Sebastian - The Last Three Years
After his confrontation with the desire demon Allure, Sebastian had a crisis of faith over breaking his priestly vows to pursue worldly power in Starkhaven. He questioned his own motives, worrying that he wanted to retake Starkhaven for his own personal power, not because it was the right thing to do. Trusting Starkhaven's fate to the Maker, he returned to the Chantry, but was turned away by Grand Cleric Elthina, who believed he had not yet committed fully to either course.
Though he has not renewed his vows or returned to his duties as a brother, Sebastian proved a faithful servant to the grand cleric over the past three years. As Kirkwall grows ever-more turbulent, the grand cleric relies on Sebastian to be her eyes and ears in the often-dangerous secular world. Whether he will again devote himself to the Chantry or return to Starkhaven is still anyone's guess, though Sebastian was heard saying that he will not leave Kirkwall as long as both the Champion and the grand cleric need him.
Xenon the Antiquarian
You received the invitation? Then you are fortunate, indeed. Xenon is no ordinary man, as you will discover for yourself when you enter the Black Emporium. The... item you'll see resting in the chair is not one of the displays; rather, it is the proprietor. It may speak to you—that's Xenon, using the mystical bauble that has allowed him to communicate since he lost the power of speech.
The story tells that Xenon was a Kirkwall nobleman in the Age of Steel, almost three hundred years ago. Obsessed with the pursuit of eternal life, he made a deal with a powerful witch (some say it was the legendary Antivan "Witch of the Weyrs"), and his wish was granted. He obtained eternal life—but not eternal youth. His body became decrepit, and he used his vast wealth to seek out ways to preserve it. Some were magical, many were dangerous, and almost all of them were unsuccessful.
What remains is an immobile mass of twisted flesh—and I think Xenon's mind has slowly decayed along with his body. He hid away in the Undercity and has slowly amassed a collection that's sure to amaze. If he invited you, he thinks you have the coin he needs to further his search for a cure.
Just don't think of stealing anything. The golem is not for show.
Although you're free to look around the shop, I wouldn't suggest staying overlong. You might be present for one of the "baths" his servant gives him hourly to keep his flesh from becoming completely desiccated.
Trust me: you don't want that.
—From a letter of unknown origin, 8:49 Blessed