“I would ask you a question, da’len.”
Sighing, Meryell glanced out of the corner of her eye at Solas, who had abruptly brought his horse up alongside her own. Feeling one of her ears flick in annoyance, she replied, “Sure, Chuckles. I suppose I can be fucking charitable today. What’s the question?”
“I have recently learned your last name is Verlen . I merely wonder why it is that you carry such a name.”
“You know what it means.”
“I do,” he replied and she ground her teeth together at the pride he said that with. The very little conversation that she’d actually had with the other elf had revealed that he was exactly what she’d first assumed: proud of his knowledge and all too willing to call the Dalish fools for their lack. She’d stopped talking to him as soon as he’d turned up his nose at her rather snide comment about how he should maybe teach them what they had gotten wrong instead of just standing around being a fucking prick about it.
Solas didn’t call himself Dalish but he had every inch of the pride that most of them did.
Meryell turned her head towards him and arched an eyebrow as she asked, “And you assume that I don’t?”
“I assume nothing of the sort, da’len. Given that you seem to have a fair grasp of our tongue, I surmised that you knew its meaning.” He smirked as he paused before finishing, “I merely asked why you carry such a name.”
Narrowing her eyes at him, she growled, “Pala adahl’en, masvian.”
Solas’ ears twitched but his smirk only widened as he said, “You certainly have a grasp of the insults.
“Dhava ‘ma masa . “
“Enan harthathe prones Rajelanes viraju.”
Snarling, Meryell spat, “Varathe ish tor or min!“
“They always like this? Talking in Elven and the like?” she heard Sera ask from behind them where she and Cassandra were riding. The Seeker merely grunted affirmatively, which caused the archer to blow a very loud raspberry in response.
Rolling her eyes skyward at the conversation of the others, Meryell growled, “Cullen’s job is leading the Inquisition’s forces. Nothing more, nothing less. The next time you fucking imply that he has any other job, particularly implying that I’m somehow above him when I’m sure as fucking not , I am going to stab you.”
Solas arched an eyebrow at her for a long moment before saying, “Ah. I was to understand that you had come to an agreement with the Commander. Ir abelas, da’len.”
“Din,” she replied shortly. Glancing back towards their companions, Meryell sighed heavily before she said, “My babae took the name Verlen to replace his own. He was Dalish and then he wasn’t because humans can be bastards to our kind. That satisfy your curiosity, Chuckles?”
“Indeed. Though I wonder at why you so strongly protested to being Dalish some time ago.”
“Because I’m not .” Shrugging, Meryell went on, “So I’ve got Dalish blood. So fucking what . Being Dalish doesn’t make a damn lick of difference in the alienage, especially not when my father abandoned most of the ways because it makes them assholes. That what you want to hear, Chuckles? You’re right, the Dalish are shit.”
Flicking an ear, Solas said, “I do not recall saying the Dalish were shit .”
She started to open her mouth to reply when Sera yelled from behind them, “Might as well have, Egg!” Snorting at the younger woman’s nickname for the mage, Meryell shook her head while she tried not to laugh at the look of absolute outrage on his face. She was so happy suddenly to have brought Sera into the Inquisition if it meant more annoyance for the smug bastard.
“Not in so many words,” she noted wryly, “but if you read between the lines…” As she trailed off, Meryell shrugged. “Come on, Chuckles, you talk about them like they don’t know shit but won’t help them to correct their mistakes.”
He let out an offended sounding little huff of breath before asking, “And my refusal means I believe them to be such?”
“From where I’m standing? Yeah.”
Solas went silent after that and Meryell shifted in the saddle of her Forder, assuming that he’d be silent for the rest of their trip to Redcliffe to finally see why the Grand Enchanter had come all the way to Val Royeaux to see her. Her assumption was wrong.
“Fuck’s sake. What is is now, Chuckles?”
She turned her head at the immediate silence in response to find the other elf frowning at her, his brows furrowed seriously. Rolling her eyes, Meryell feigned politeness and asked, “What question can I answer now, hahren ?”
“You mock me.”
Solas sighed heavily then asked, “Why do you keep the name? If I may inquire?”
Meryell turned away from him, focusing on the road ahead as she answered stiffly, “Because my babae chose it. That’s the last I’m going to say on it.”
“So you seek to honor his memory.”
“Something like that.”
“I see,” Solas said airily. He then paused before adding, “You are…more…than I initially thought, da’len. “
As she started to open her mouth to reply, Sera suddenly barged between them on her horse, practically cackling as she cried out, “Stop trying, Eggy! Glowy Bits is already spoken for by her Cully Wully!” From behind her, Meryell heard Cassandra let loose with a withering sigh as the archer rode away from them and laughed, shaking her head at the pair of them.
Solas sniffed delicately as he watched Sera’s disappearing form and muttered, “Charming.”
“Indeed,” agreed Cassandra. “I think we should follow her so as to make sure she doesn’t kill herself.”
“You’re probably right,” conceded Meryell, shaking her head. Then she grinned over her shoulder at the Seeker, childishly calling out, “Race you to the Jenny!” before she put her heels to the side of her Forder. As the horse beneath her leapt forward into a hard lope, she heard vaguely heard the other woman say something to Solas before the two of them followed her.
Maybe now with having to spend their time catching up to Sera, she wouldn’t have to answer any more damned questions.
Pala adahl’en >> Go fuck a forest
Dhava ‘ma masa >> Kiss my ass
Enan harthathe prones Rajelanes viraju >> I understand that is the Commander’s job (roughly)
Varathe ish tor or min >> Leave him out of this
Ir abelas >> I am sorry
Din >> No