How long had it been now? A year, maybe longer, maybe less; none of it mattered anymore. Why had she done it? Why had she chosen that murdering fake over him, the Prince of Ferelden? Loghain had let the darkspawn murder Cailan, his half-brother; husband to Loghain's own daughter and King of Ferelden. But she had chosen that man over the next in line for the throne, and for what? He had more questions than he would ever have answer to.
Nothing seemed fair. He didn't want the throne, Anora could have it for herself; he hadn't cared about any of that. The man should be dead, yet he still lived! After everything, after trying to explain it all away to him, she had still let that murdering scoundrel live. Alistair, the exiled Prince of Ferelden, felt betrayed by her actions. She should have killed him on the spot, with as much anger as he himself had felt boiling in his own blood, but instead she had begged him to see reason.
How many battles had they fought together? How many darkspawn slain between the two of them? All of it was for nothing. All the nights he spent huddled away in her tent, speaking quietly to her about his fears, confessing things he would have never even thought of telling anyone else. She had taken that trust and with one decision had shattered it. He had refused to talk to her after that, even though she had pleaded with him to listen to her reasons for letting that bastard of a man to be allowed into the Grey Wardens and thus saved from the sword that should have been thrust through his heart. There was no reason for any of it! She'd claimed she wanted Loghain to slay the Archdemon, to die with the creature in a way of atoning for his help in murdering the King and betraying the country. He hadn't wanted to listen, and Alistair had stormed away in a fit of rage to watch the battle from a distance.
He had cared about her–no, he had fallen in love with her, but she had even gone back on her plan to let that murderous bastard kill the beast and had dug her own sword into its neck. He had watched, felt the rage build in his chest until he'd released a furious shout into the air as the woman crumbled to her knees; the Archdemon burning away along with her while the others gathered around to watch.
With her death, he had lost everything. He truly was the King of Nothing.
Alistair stared at the disgusting brew in his tankard but made no complaint as he dropped it down his throat again. He had enough money to pay for a few more before they would kick him out, then he'd have to go back to doing odd end jobs until he had enough for another night of binge drinking.
Despite being in Lowtown, the Hanged Man was one of the more popular taverns in Kirkwall. Alistair had learned to cope with the hustle and bustle that came with going to a popular bar, he'd even managed to make friends with Corff, the bartender; but it didn't help his mood. Not to mention there was one man–though the exiled prince didn't know him by name–who would do nothing but sit near him and talk about how they were all part of some story that was being told by someone else; or how whoever was telling the story should have made him more handsome. Alistair wished whoever was telling the story would make him shut up.
He knew all the normal patrons of the place; a dwarf who carried around a crossbow that he often talked to kept to the back by himself, which Alistair was glad of. He didn't want to be caught in the crosshair when the small man finally lost his head. He had friends, he'd seen a man and others come into the tavern frequently and retreat to the rear table to be with the dwarf. There was another woman he faintly recognized from his times in Ferelden but he couldn't remember her name; just that he'd run into her once or maybe twice. The others were all blurs of drunken and slightly friendly faces, he was just thankful none of them ever recognized him.
Over the years Alistair had let his facial hair grow, a bit of stubble along his chin giving him a more rugged look. He kept a cloak on, keeping the hood drawn over his head. While many might not realize who he was in the first place, he did still have those who had been loyal to his cause in Ferelden that had fled here to Kirkwall out of desperation to get away from the blight. So one could imagine his surprise when an unknown woman walked into the bar and took a seat next to him at the table; throwing her hand up as she ordered a tankard of ale for herself. She took a long swallow of the drink before she dropped the cup back onto the wooden table, never even once letting her gaze slide over to him; though she had the exiled prince's full attention. She was Orlesian, of that he was sure. Her skin tone was different from that of any Ferelden he'd ever seen, and her armor was too ornate to have been smithed by any of those native to his lands.
"So," she finally spoke, letting her eyes slide towards him, staring at him with a very unimpressed look. Her voice was light, but her accent was thick; Alistair had been right about her origins. "The rumors really are true."
He tried to play dumb. "Rumors you say? I don't believe I've heard any of late," he grumbled as he took another gulp from his tankard.
He saw the corner of her mouth twitch upwards, a sound of mirth bubbling in her voice as she said, "Aye, rumors that the once great and kind prince is now a lowly drunkard in Kirkwall's best known ale house."