Inspired by this fic. Read it, rolled over and tried not to cry, cried a lot then attempted to draw something.
God, how powerful would this game have been if one of the outcomes for Anders blowing up the chantry was because your Hawke sacrificed themselves to keep Anders’ secret. The stakes and risks for playing a mage Hawke just weren’t great or immediate enough in this game.
Just imagine, the templars have launched a full out war on the apostates, storming the city and finally tracking down one of the leaders of the apostate movement, a mage in the undercity that had been healing the sick who revealed themself due to their rash and borderline extremist actions (things that Hawke counseled against). Hawke gets the news and desperately races to try and save Anders before time runs out. He/She journeys down to pretend to be this apostate figure in Anders’ place and fight them off so Anders can escape. Possibly this whole time, Hawke has even been petioning for peace and trying their best to prove to Anders and everyone else in Kirwall that there is a solution beyond the mindless confllict that continues to escalate, proving a friend to mages and reasonable templars alike. Anders has wanted to take drastic action, arguing that if the right of annulment is invoked, that in retaliation they should ‘annul’ the chantry itself, but Hawke has adamantly insisted that religion itself is not the source of the evil in Kirwall and that innocents should not be slain to create an example. She claims that if anything, the circle tower is the true symbol of oppression, built on the bones of slaves and holding slaves still, not the chantry in and of itself.
Even in the face of this, the templars, led by KC Meredith capture Hawke, discover Hawke’s secret in place of Anders and publicly arrange to tranquilize him/her as an example in the final battle. The mages and the templars that Hawke won over and aided are outraged and fight for their and Hawke’s freedom. Anders and the team don’t know whether or not they’ve made it in time to save Hawke, and depending on certain choices, they finally fight their way to her, only to discover they’re too late and Hawke been made tranquil.
In retribution, Anders evacuates the circle tower, and then blows it to hell so that no loved one will ever be lost to tranquility again within its walls, nor any human being made to bow beneath the statues of slavery still hanging in the courtyard. He is rumored to have said to Meredith right before the blast, “I will do what he/she could not.”
The epilogue mentions him being seen escorting a blank faced Hawke from the city in the wake of the ruin, devoting his life to finding a way to reverse what he has lost. Though once his vengeance was rooted in his rage, it is widely spoken of that, following Hawke’s example, his love became the source of his actions, leading him on a crusade to unify all who are willing and restore the leader that can bring them into a new age. It is whispered that Hawke’s sacrifice to save him when he should have been the one to suffer Hawke’s fate has fundamentally altered him, and he is possessed with new purpose, one of true justice.
Hawke becomes a symbol of self-sacrifice and martyrdom, believed by the rebels to be Andraste reborn, the prophet of a new world order who took pity on the mages at long last in his/her goodness and overturned the world once more to right the wrongs of man. Noone knows what has become of him/her, but his/her spirit lives on in the cries of freedom uttered to him/her, as mages everywhere band together with their long-lost families, loved ones and new allies to fight for their freedom together.
Even thinking about it makes me shiver.