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Fanfic / Sun-touched

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Art by the-upper-shelf, used with permission

Sun-touched is a Dragon Age: Inquisition fanfiction by lucyrne (the ungenue). When Varric Tethras receives a special invitation from Paragon-elect Bianca Davri, he must make a reluctant journey to Orzammar. Of all his friends, Bethany Hawke is the only one who can come along, hopefully to add a little sunlight to what promises to be a dull affair.

Unfortunately for him, Varric's plan to make a brief appearance underground becomes complicated when Bethany is mistaken for his girlfriend. Together, they navigate dwarven society, investigate a weapons racket, and fall in love.

Because this is a Continuation of Inquisition, there are spoilers here.


Sun-touched provides examples of:

  • Abusive Parents: Bianca's parents - especially her mother - definitely give off this vibe.
  • Author Appeal: The author describes the story as a "self-indulgent rare pair extravaganza" in one of her notes.
  • Badass Pacifist: Bethany will never go looking for a fight and hates to be anything less than sweet or kind to anyone. But if push comes to shove, she holds her own.
  • Benevolent Boss: As Viscount of Kirkwall, Varric tries to be one of these for the whole city.
  • Big Damn Kiss/Fake-Out Make-Out: As seen in the page image. Rather than be caught snooping, Varric and Bethany hide in a closet; but when they realize they're about to be caught anyway, Bethany instigates this to dupe people into thinking they just sneaked away to make out. It works.
  • Celebrity Is Overrated: How Bianca feels about being elected the first surfacer Paragon.
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  • Closed Circle: Orzammar is basically one of these for Varric and Bethany, as they're trapped by convention and have no access to her brother or anyone else who could help them. Even the guards who accompanied them are of minimal use.
  • Content Warning: The chapter containing the official Relationship Upgrade is given one of these, and carefully structured to allow the reader to skip past the steamy bits if they prefer.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Bogdan eventually reveals himself to be one of these.
  • Dances and Balls: Dancing forms part of the celebration of Bianca's elevation to Paragon.
  • Fake Relationship: No, Varric and Bethany aren't a couple. But there's not much point in trying to explain that to everyone at the party, not least because it will look strange that he didn't bring a date.
  • Fantastic Racism: Bethany is a human in the dwarven capital, and with few exceptions, she's not treated particularly well by its residents.
  • Interspecies Romance: Varric is a dwarf, Bethany is a human, and Bianca's mother apparently finds it hilarious that he's in one of these. Except he isn't. Until he is.
  • Killed Off for Real: Bogdan. Varric is not responsible, however.
  • Mistaken for Romance: When Bethany is the only one of Varric's friends who can accompany him to Orzammar, this is misinterpreted by the dwarves; they think he's bringing his concubine. Rather than disabuse anyone of the notion, the two decide to run with it, figuring they might be able to use it to their advantage.
  • Murder the Hypotenuse: Bogdan's ultimate goal. Turns out he's known about Bianca and Varric the entire time and has been waiting for his chance.
  • Parental Marriage Veto: As in canon, this is what kept Bianca from marrying Varric. It's also the reason why they're not happy to see him now. And just for good measure, it's the reason her mother is still trying to have him killed.
  • Pet the Dog: Bogdan is one of the few characters to be consistently polite to Bethany, expressing concern when she's injured. According to the author, it's not entirely an act, as he regards her as a mostly innocent bystander to the whole situation.
  • Red Herring: Varric keeps finding evidence that Bianca has it in for him. She doesn't. Her parents and husband are another story, however.
  • Reluctant Ruler: As in canon, Varric is less than enthused about having been made the Viscount of Kirkwall.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: Bianca, at the very end, decides to take off on her own and go no-contact with her parents and the rest of dwarven society. She and Varric share a friendly farewell before she disappears from his life forever.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Bethany, in her red formal gown.
  • There Is Only One Bed: And Varric has to share it with his best friend's little sister. It's about as awkward as you probably expect. (Well, at first.)
  • Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: Varric and Bethany are this, on account of her being a human.
  • What Beautiful Eyes!: Varric admits to himself in the very first chapter that he absolutely cannot say no to Bethany's big brown eyes, and it's for this reason that many people in Kirkwall ask her to intercede with the Viscount on their behalf; he puts up a minor token resistance before giving her anything she requests. It's clear, from the way he describes it, that he doesn't mind this in the slightest.