Dragon Age Wiki
Dragon Age Wiki

Mirror Image is an Act 2 companion quest for Merrill in Dragon Age II.


Complete Blackpowder Courtesy.


Merrill's Home[]

Speak with Merrill at her home at the Kirkwall Alienage in Lowtown.

She tells Hawke about the discovery of an Eluvian in the Brecilian Forest by two of her clan members, Tamlen and Mahariel. She says that Tamlen disappeared and hints that Mahariel died (unless imported from a Dalish Elf Origin). If Hawke investigates further, Merrill reveals the mirror became the main reason why the Keeper allowed her to leave; it is a potential threat. But Merrill, despite the danger it poses, is determined to restore a piece of their legacy.

Note: If Anders is in your party when you talk to Merrill, he will react to her talking about blood magic.

So that the mirror can be repaired, she needs an Arulin'Holm, and Merrill requests that Hawke accompany her to face Keeper Marethari.

  • Flirt with her (First Wheel):
    • Friendship Merrill: friendship (+5) if friendly, Rivalry Merrill: rivalry (+5) if in a rivalry
  • Aggressive response: "Are you crazy?" (Second Wheel):
    • Rivalry Merrill: rivalry (+15)
  • Agree to help her (Fourth Wheel):
    • Friendship Merrill: friendship (+10)
  • Refuse to aid her (Fourth Wheel):
    • Rivalry Merrill: rivalry (+10)
Note: Even if you refuse to help, the quest will start.


As they confront the Keeper, Hawke guides Merrill as she asks the Keeper for the carving tool. So that Merrill can claim the Arulin'Holm, she invokes vir sulevanan, the entitlement of the Dalish to a property of their people, for an errand they must perform. Though the Keeper disapproves, she accepts her proposal. For the task, they must kill a Varterral that has taken three hunters of the clan.

Note: Honoring the Fallen is also initiated along with the quest update of exterminating the Varterral

Varterral Hunting Ground[]

The map layout is similar to Smuggler's Cut, and most of the enemies in here are spiders and corpses. If Merrill has learned and preferably upgraded Chain Lightning, that spell will be very useful, as will a warrior who can inflict Stagger on a regular basis. The only fight that should be of any considerable difficulty is the first one, which drops three Elite-ranked Wasp Spiders (functionally identical to Poisonous/Venomous Spiders) at once. Aggro the first group of Cave Spiders, then retreat all the way west and hold position if you need to. This should provide enough of a window to take them down while only aggro'ing two of the three Wasp Spiders, if any. Despite being Elite rank they aren't very durable and can be taken down quickly with focused fire, as long as you don't have the other spiders getting in the way. You could also try running straight through and corralling them all with the doorway, just don't forget Radha's Amulet before you go any further.

The next fight allows you to retreat to the top of the stairs and eliminating the cave spiders before taking on an Elite-ranked Hunter Spider (functionally identical to a Corrupted Spider), so don't worry about this fight too much. Make sure to retrieve Harshal's Amulet from the passage off to the left. Return to the main path and pick up the Orichalcum and Glitterdust along the way, as well as a Rivaini Seer's Brand from the Standard-ranked chest near the Glitterdust, which provides a small boost to fire and spirit damage. Chandan's Amulet can be found on the ledge to the right at the bottom of the wooden steps.

Merrill grieving for Pol

Continue to the left to encounter Pol. He runs away from Merrill in fear, and toward the Varterral by accident. Save before continuing any further down the stairs, as the game does not auto-save and a game-over here requires you to redo the entire cavern.

The varterral can regularly cause knockback and will spit an acidic AoE, which appears to deal spirit damage, but it's not too difficult if you brought a warrior to hold its attention while rogues flank and mages attack from range. It is immune to fire on Nightmare difficulty but is vulnerable to cold. With everyone at range it will spam its AoE and thus be an even greater threat, so spread everyone out and have at least one warrior to fight at the front. Occasionally it will simply bury its face in the ground and spit repeatedly to create a continuous AoE right under a companion, so watch out for this.

After losing roughly 33% and 66% of its health, the varterral summons a group of spiders as backup, 3 Critter ranks and 1 Normal per wave. They're easy enough to eliminate, so don't let them stick around too long. You could retreat up the stairs to corral them, but the varterral will likely follow and get wedged on the stairs. It cannot pursue you, but it will remain here spitting its acid and knocking back any attempt to return to the main arena, so this is not recommended. It can also trigger earthquakes which dislodge boulders capable of causing 100+ damage, so keep everyone out of the falling trails of dirt.

After the fight with the beast, Merrill approaches Pol, already dead. If Anders is in the party, or if Hawke is a mage, regardless of specialization, she implores that Pol be revived; if no mage is present, she pleads to bring him to the Keeper. No matter whether it is Hawke or Anders that responds, both determine that it is already too late for him. Merrill then laments his death, unable to fathom why he ran.

  • Regardless of choices, if Hawke asks "Why did he run?":
    • Rivalry Merrill: rivalry (+15)
  • Helpful response: "Don't blame yourself":
    • Friendship Merrill: friendship (+5)
    • Rivalry Fenris: rivalry (+5)
  • Charming response: "Do you need a moment?":
    • Friendship Merrill: friendship (+5)
  • Direct response: "Don't waste your tears.":
    • Rivalry Merrill: rivalry (+10)

As the party egresses from the lair back the way they came, Merrill is shaken by how Pol acted like she was "a monster."

  • Fenris replies, "You are a monster," if present. Isabela will snap at him saying "You're not helping." He bitterly replies, "Good."
  • Isabela without Fenris is more sympathetic, saying "Don't blame yourself, Kitten. Sometimes men do senseless things."
  • Anders, without Isabela or Fenris, replies, "Maybe he was thinking, 'Aaah! Blood mage!' That seems the most likely scenario."

Don't forget the Deep Mushroom on your way back up. On the way out the door Merrill reflects on how the clan looked at her when they arrived and wonders what they may have been saying about her since she left, insisting that she would never hurt the clan.

You'll fight some more corpses on the way out, but there are some Normal-ranked (and higher) Skeleton Archers to worry about. In the entrance chamber you'll fight a Frost Horror, which fights identically to an Arcane Horror, and many corpses and skeleton archers, among which is an Elite-ranked archer. Take out the horror and feel free to fall back into the narrow paths if you don't feel like taking on so many at once, especially after coming off the varterral fight with few potions to spare. The cliff walls will break line of sight and set them up for AoEs.


The party exits the caves and returns to the Keeper. As you receive the reward and give the retrieved amulets of the hunters, Merrill, bewildered, demands an explanation why Pol kept his distance from her. Marethari admits that she warned the clan to stay away from Merrill, as Merrill may bring back the taint. She also attempts to persuade Merrill to abandon the Eluvian, but Merrill is persistent.

Note: You do not immediately have to return to the Keeper. You can remove companions from the party in order to manipulate approval gains. Only Merrill needs to be in the party.

Though Merrill has contributed her part, Marethari, doubtful of her, does not give her the Arulin'Holm; instead, she gives the artifact to Hawke.

  • Give Merrill the Arulin'Holm:
    • Friendship Merrill: friendship (+15)
    • Rivalry Anders: rivalry (+10)
    • Rivalry Aveline: rivalry (+10)
    • Rivalry Fenris: rivalry (+5)
    • Rivalry Sebastian: rivalry (+5)
Note: Aside from friendship and rivalry changes, this choice has no effect on the plot. In particular, denying Merrill the Arulin'Holm will not prevent her from continuing work on the mirror, nor will it avoid the disastrous events of A New Path.
  • Deny Merrill the Arulin'Holm:
    • Merrill: This will REVERSE any existing friendship above 15 into rivalry of that amount reduced by 15. For example, an existing friendship of 40 will turn into rivalry of 25. Friendship at 15 or lower, or at rivalry, will all be affected by the same amount of Rivalry Merrill: rivalry (+15). Note: Maxing her friendship beforehand prevents this.
    • Friendship Anders: friendship (+10)
    • Friendship Aveline: friendship (+10)
    • Friendship Fenris: friendship (+5)
    • Friendship Sebastian: friendship (+5)
  • Deny Merrill at first, then acquiesce on the second chance:
    • Friendship Merrill: friendship (+15)
    • Friendship Anders: friendship (+10)
    • Rivalry Aveline: rivalry (+10)
    • Rivalry Fenris: rivalry (+5)
    • Rivalry Sebastian: rivalry (+5)

If Hawke investigates before coming up with the decision, Hawke learns that Merrill studied blood magic because the shard she obtained was tainted. A demon advised her to use the forbidden magic so that she could cleanse it. If Anders or Fenris is in the party, he objects, but she argues that it was the only way, as she did not have an abundance of lyrium to work with.



  • Achievement: That Thing Has Legs
  • Honeycut (dagger)
    • In the Treasure Pile where the fight against the Varterral takes place.
    • Another one can be received if Hawke didn't give the Arulin'Holm to Merrill. pcpcps3ps3xbox360xbox360
  • Borderfall (longbow)
    • Dropped by the Varterral.
  • Varterral's Heart (used in the quest Herbalist's Tasks)
    • Added to the players inventory automatically upon the Varterral's death.
  • Hubris (staff)
    • Dropped by the Frost Horror.
    • This the only staff in the game that gives a Health bonus, so it may be useful to a Hawke Mage or Merrill that uses Blood Mage.
  • A decent amount of Gold, level dependent, in the same treasure pile as Honeycut.
  • 1000 XP after killing the Varterral (quest update) and (another) 1000 XP when talking to Marethari after killing the Varterral (quest completion).


If you are seeking the Supplier achievement, be sure and grab the Deep Mushroom, Glitterdust, and Orichalcum.

  • Orichalcum - In the same room as the second group of spiders.
  • Glitterdust - After defeating the second group of spiders, go down the stairs in the next room and it will be to the left, near a door.
  • Deep Mushroom - After defeating the Varterral, go up the stairs and it will be in front of you.