"The truth is, I made many mistakes. I was proud, I was selfish, I was afraid... and many of my mistakes are incorrectable, decisions I can never take back, no matter how much I want. But I believe, I have to do what feels right, even if I did one, two, or many wrongs before. Until the end of my life, I will always have new tasks ahead of me. Perhaps less grandiose, but tasks nevertheless."
- Meira to Inquisitor Éirinn Lavellan upon meeting her
Meira Surana was a Grey Warden, also known as the Champion of Redcliffe, Arl of Amaranthine, the Hero of Ferelden, and the Dark Wolf - although this last identity was known to very few, and was later inherited by another person. She was an elven mage, raised by the Circle. She later became a shapeshifter – under the mentoring of one of her most trusted friends, Morrigan - an arcane warrior, and later a battlemage and spirit healer. She also rose to the rank of Warden-Commander, and started to rebuild the order of the Wardens with the help of her lover, Alistair.
Meira, at first sight is a short, slim woman, with the unmistakable elven ears. She wears her blond hair cut short, so her ears are almost always visible – although elves were common in the Circle of Magi, Meira had only few elven friends growing up, and the human apprentice’s many times gave her funny looks. This was her main reason to cut her hair short and make her elven origin even more obvious. She also has two tattoos on her face – one bigger, around her right eye, and one smaller on her left cheek. Both tattoos are in a pale gold color, that melts in with her skin color. Her eyes are a dark shade of blue, from distance, they can be mistaken to be dark brown. Her shortness and slimness give her little problem in fighting – as an arcane warrior, she often wears armor (during the Fifth Blight, she fought in a dragon-scale armor, using her staff, or her starmetal blade, Starfang), carries her staff, a backpack, or heavier weapons without significantly slowing down.
Overall, Meira has a pretty face, but she never really cared about it, for she wears really little, or no make-up. Her hair is also little boyish – although she was once complemented by Leliana because of it’s simplicity. Alistair also called her beautiful several times.
Although she is only mentioned in Inquisition (And writes a letter to Éirinn Lavellan, the Inquisitor), her appearance change slightly by that time. She lets her hair grow more (although it still not grows past her shoulders), she also gets a little more muscular. As Warden-Commander of Ferelden, she wears her uniform, but while searching to end the Calling, she wears light armor instead.
Meira was generally considered a kind soul, but she has her dark side and edges. During her time in the Tower, she was helpful towards fellow students and respectful towards her masters. She was a maximalist, she tried to do her best in everything – this was also due to the fact, that she was looked down on almost her entire life. She was an elf among mages, mage among elves, and if she had nowhere to be perfectly accepted, she at least wanted to be the best in what she did.
As Duncan mentioned when recruiting her to the Wardens, she was willing to risk anything for a friend. This was also a little bit due to her origins – when she found a friend, she really appreciated them, giving them full trust and understanding.
When joining the Wardens, this trait became really important for Meira. She wanted her whole group to feel her appreciation, and have a bond, which made her play diplomat for a long time. She was a bit afraid to speak her mind to her followers instead, only tried to understand their point of view. This made her win their trust quickly, but she also felt that she was failing to be a good leader. After Oghren joined the group in Orzammar, Meira started to speak her mind more often, share her real opinions with the team, and this – in contrast to her expectations – made her even more popular.
Her kindness and helpfulness also showed itself many times along the way, when people asked her to aid them with a problem – she rarely turned them down, and only with good reason. She, however often said no to people, who only acted for their own gain. But despite being heroic and good hearted most of the time, Meira started to learn along the way, that her moralities are not always in synchrony with her goals, and she sometimes didn’t have the luxury of turning down an offer, a crime, letting go an opportunity for getting power just because she felt it wasn’t right. She learned techniques involving blood magic, although she never considered herself to be a blood mage, and never wanted to be one. She intimidated people into making decisions, she lied, and she didn’t show mercy several times along the way, she was often ready to steal, if it helped her reaching her goals. These occasions, and these decisions stayed with her, and she didn’t want to forget them – they reminded her, who she is, and what are the choices she makes out of necessity.
Meira was quite rarely joking herself, but she appreciated humor. Her love for Alistair was very much based on the fact, that the boy could cheer her up anytime. She was also particularly understanding and helpful towards elves, despite the fact that she never acted scornful towards any species.
Talents and Skills
Meira tried to have an open mind, and learn many kinds of magic, but she had her preferences. Her unmistakable favourite weapon was lightning. She could easily create a powerful tempest, and many enemies instantly fell, when hit by her shock. She also liked to use fire, as she often made her party fight with flaming swords, but the preference always stayed lightning.
She had some talent in healing, which she could combine with her lightning techniques on the battlefield. She often stayed behind, attacked from the background, constantly healing her team while they gave the enemy the final blow. Her quick thinking often helped the team using the best strategy in a battle. She also had shapeshifting abilities, thanks to Morrigan, who helped her a great deal in unlocking her potential as a shapeshifter, but she rarely used them, since in the battle, she had to stay in human form, to cast spells, and control the team.
During her time in Soldier’s Peak, even though she really hated what Avernus did, she drank the substance he created, which helped her use a type of blood magic, with her own tainted blood.
Even though she learned it in the Circle, she only had a little talent in herbalism – she never really liked it, and wasn’t particularly talented in it anyway. This was most likely the main reason, why she learned advanced healing techniques only after she spent longer time as a Warden, and even then, mostly focused on the fighting.
Beside her talents involving magic, she also had little skills in stealing, and a very high charisma, meaning, that she could convince almost anyone. She considered this ability quite useless for a time – in the Tower, she rarely lied, and her respect for her masters and her fellow students left little room for solving problems with persuasion. However, when she became a Grey Warden, this passive skill helped her an awful lot. Meira was also considered quite intelligent. She easily solved riddles, almost immediately recognized, when she was trapped in the Fade, and often realized if someone was trying to keep secrets from her.
Meira was born in the Denerim Alienage, but she speaks of her childhood very little. When Morrigan asks of her mother, she even dodges the question, saying that “There is not much to know about her”. She has a reason for it – although she was taken away at a young age, her childhood years were spent in poverty. Her mother, Namara, looked very much like her, the only big difference was the fact that she left her hair grow, and braided it, and she didn’t have tattoos on her face. Her father, Taedis Surana died in a disease months after she was born, leaving her mother with almost no chance to raise her. Namara however didn’t give up, and tried everything, to keep her child, and herself alive, slowly breaking down in the process. Meira loved her deeply, but at a young age, couldn’t comprehend how much her mother needed to sacrifice simply to give her food, and keep her away from the hatred and darkness that waited outside the door – of course, as she grew, and met human children, this was harder and harder.
When she started to show the signs of magical ability, at the age of seven, it was a blessing for them. Another thing for others, to despise her, but a chance to get away from poverty, and give her mother a chance to survive as well. When the templars came for her, Namara asked her to forget everything about Denerim, to leave without looking back. Meira promised this, and stayed true to her word, therefor didn’t speak about her background while in the Tower, nor when she traveled with her companions. The memories of Denerim were bound to fade from her mind, hopefully forever.
When she began her training, she almost immediately made friends with Jowan. He was an apprentice for one year already, when she met him, and he was eager to show her the Tower. Meira really enjoyed his company, they laughed a lot together, and the boy became the reason, while she felt at home in the Tower. As she progressed in her training, she tried to ignore the feeling, that Jowan has a hint of jealousy towards her… he was curious, and determined, but magic came much easier to her. Although she knew of the dangers of the Harrowing, there were many days when she wished that Jowan would go through it finally… she believed in him enough to think he will do it, and she wanted him to become a mage, and leave these stupid feelings behind.
She got to know Cullen, the templar when they were both around sixteen. The boy went to her one day, starting a conversation, quite rare, for a templar. Meira felt a bit intimidated at first, she didn’t understand the reasoning, but later, she put her preconceptions behind her, and realized that Cullen was a lonely teenager just as much as any mage child. They started to talk, and developed a friendly bond despite the problems with any kind of relationships between mages and templars. When their friendship became more wildly known in the Tower, several young mages (including Jowan) mentioned Meira, that the poor boy maybe in love with her… although she denied it, Meira also had the feeling that maybe there is more behind the kindness and awkwardness of the young templar than simple loneliness and seeking for friendship. She never actually confronted him with this, feeling that it is better for both of them, if she seems ignorant.
Mostly because of her progress, she had quite many lessons with First Enchanter Irving himself, he taught her most of her lightning techniques, and he had a quite close bond with her – she could often talk to him with personal problems as well, and when the time came for her to undergo the Harrowing, Irving couldn’t resist comforting her when she was unsure of herself.
When she was summoned for her Harrowing, Meira was equally excited and terrified. She knew it was her only way to step forward, but she also knew how dangerous it was. When stepping into the Harrowing chamber, she caught a glimpse of Cullen… the boy immediately turned away. Irving explained the nature of her task, and tried to reassure her a bit – it helped a great deal, and Meira didn’t feel ashamed to admit her fears later, not to Irving, and not to Wynne.
When she entered the Fade, at first, she needed to collect herself, but soon, she realized she had to look around, and had to find the demon she needs to face – she had to fight several wraiths, but nothing too powerful, she could defeat most of them with one spell. During one of these small fights, she noticed a rat on the road, who soon turned into a young man wearing mage robes, and told that she could call him Mouse, and he was an apprentice, who couldn’t do the Harrowing in time. Meira immediately noticed, that her robes weren’t an apprentice’s, but she didn’t say anything about them – especially, when Mouse told her, he didn’t even remember his name. Meira decided to remember this fact, but she realized, it could be because he didn’t remember how an apprentice robe looked like. She let Mouse follow her, and soon reached the spirit of Valor – she asked him, to give her a staff, and agreed to duel the spirit for it. Valor was impressed by her skills, and gave her the staff. As she went down the road, she also met the Sloth Demon… It agreed to teach Mouse the bear form, after Meira convinced him, he can’t live hiding forever. They were both prepared and willing to fight when demon Meira had to defeat appeared. She soon learned, that Mouse had an agreement with the demon, but started to get more and more suspicious… so she asked him, whether he remembers the names of those he previously betrayed. When Mouse dodged the question, and started to speak about his second chance, and the fact that she could “let him in”, Meira understood what was happening, and confronted him, saying that the demon they faced couldn’t have been the true test. Mouse turned into a Pride Demon, and acknowledged Meira’s intelligence.
She woke up in the apprentice quarters not long after, and the Tower was already talking about her successful Harrowing. Jowan was by her side, and let out a sigh of relief, when he saw her wake up, almost immediately asking about the ceremony. Meira told him not to ask about that, because he knows she can’t answer, but it was obvious Jowan was hurt. He also told Meira to go, and see the First Enchanter. Walking through the halls many apprentices and mages congratulated her, and soon, when she reached the mage quarters, she bumped into Cullen… the boy said he was happy, she was alright, and told her the truth – he would have been the one to slay her. Meira knew it would worsen the situation, but she couldn’t help herself asking if he really would have done it. Cullen replied he would have felt awful, but he is a templar. Meira was forgiving, and told him, she was ready to talk anytime, not wanting to stain their unique friendship, but she was hurt to hear this.
She learned of Duncan’s arrival while going through the library, from some senior mages, and she couldn’t hide her curiosity. She only read about the Grey Wardens before, and she was sure, none of them would come without good reason. Somehow, she had the feeling that the fact that her Harrowing is on the same day, when a Grey Warden came to the tower, should be more than a mere coincidence. She wasn’t so surprised, when she met Duncan in Irving’s study. Her first impression was, that the Grey Warden was worthy of respect, and most likely of trust… she appreciated, how Duncan was firm in speaking his mind, but not arrogant. When she was given her robes, and had to show him the way to his room, she couldn’t resist asking him about the reason for his visit. However, after she said goodbye to the Warden, Jowan came to her, asking for her help. He introduced her to Lily, and told her, he would be made tranquil… Meira felt that this wasn’t right, and felt that she should report it… especially, because she trusted Irving. But after asking a few questions, she just couldn’t bring herself. Jowan was her friend, and she couldn’t betray him like that, so she agreed, and helped them take the rod of fire, and find their way in the basement, to the phylactery chamber.
When they were caught, she tried to defend Lily as much as she could… she didn’t defend herself, she knew she should have believed Irving, when he even mentioned eyewitnesses… but she told them, that Jowan lied. She didn’t think, that Duncan would come, but in the end, exactly her foolish hopes to believe in, and help a friend, was what got her out of the tower, and made her a Grey Warden recruit.
Meira never been anywhere, beside the Denerim Alienage, and the Tower, so the travel to Ostagar was a fascinating journey in itself. Duncan wasn’t very talkative, especially not about the Grey Wardens themselves, but when she asked something about the lands they were travelling through, she always got answers. In Ostagar, she, once again started to get the funny looks… some people looked at her ears, others at her robes, but everyone was a little surprised, how an elven mage walks without restrictions in the camp. She was introduced to King Cailan… she found the man naïve, and a bit childish, but at the same time good intentioned. She mentioned Duncan her worries about the King’s careless behavior, and the Warden agreed, but explained her, that there is nothing he can do about it. He also told her to find Alistair, who can instruct her further.
As she walked in the camp, she ran into Daveth, one of the other recruits, and walked past the kennels… the man working there stopped her, asking her to help him muzzle an injured dog, to treat him. Meira agreed, and she promised to search for a herb in the wilds if she goes there, and certainly hoped to help the poor hound. She also met Wynne and talked with her a little - it was good to meet someone from the Circle, even if she only left it days ago.When reaching Alistair, the young man was arguing with a mage, not really realizing that the man is already upset… he seemed to enjoy teasing him. When they started to talk, he was a bit surprised to learn that Meira was one of the new recruits, but he seemed happy at the same time - they got along well from the first moment. Alistair led them back to Duncan, where Meira could finally meet the third recruit, a knight named Ser Jory. Duncan explained them a task they had to accomplish before starting the Joining, and becoming Grey Wardens... Meira was a bit nervous about fighting darkspawn, but she was fairly confident in her abilities, and she knew that once she will become a Warden, it will be her life anyway. As a result, she ended up being Alistair's right hand during the mission, keeping everyone on their feet - and she also picked some herbs for the dog in the kennels.
This was the first time she met Morrigan, and she was the only one, who seemed ready to communicate with the young witch. Morrigan appreciated this, and led the team to Flemeth, who gave them the ancient Grey Warden treaties, and asked them to warn the others, that this is really a Blight. Upon returning, Alistair grew more and more silent, and Meira started to feel that there is something wrong about the Joining... and she soon learned what it is. Strangely, it was too logical to feel wrong about it - there was one thing she knew gave immunity against the effects darkspawn blood, and the man at the kennels told her the _Wardens_ are immune - but it was still a bit disgusting, and of course, it was and often deadly ritual. Once again, she tried to help in keeping the other recruits on their feet... for Daveth it worked, but Jory was still terrified. After Daveth died, it turned even worse, and Duncan stabbed the man. Meira knew she didn't have a choice, but this wasn't a new thing - she never actually had a choice in her life, and she already survived one deadly ritual, so she drank from the cup. She was the only one, who survived out of three recruits. She felt a bit weary, and awfully hungry - like she could eat anything. She didn't notice Alistair, nor other Wardens smiling when seeing her eat before the battle.Cailan and Duncan decided to leave him and Alistair behind to light the fire of the Tower of Ishal - Meira was a bit surprised they didn't take them to battle, but she understood, that they were the youngest members of the order, with the least experience, so she went along with his choice. When the battle started, she could finally feel the weight of this war - they fought darkspawn before the Joining, but now, they were attacking Ostagar like waves of the ocean. They didn't have time to stand by, so they fought their way to the Tower, and up to the top as fast as they could, and lighted the fires... when they were attacked. Meira got to arrows, one in her back and one in her shoulder, when falling unconscious.
Flemeth and Lothering
She woke up in the hut of Morrigan's mother. She wasn't sure, what happened, but she was soon informed, that Loghain drew back instead of coming to Cailan's aid, and the Grey Wardens had been wiped out, save two: her and Alistair. She was happy, that at least he survived, and joined him in mourning the others. It seemed impossible, to stop the Blight, without the Wardens, without Cailan and his army... but Flemeth mentioned the treaties they both almost forgot about. The elves, the humans, the mages and the dwarves all had obligations, so they had to visit them... Flemeth also asked Morrigan to go with them. Although Morrigan herself seemed reluctant, Meira welcomed her company. She mentioned, that their first stop should be the village of Lothering, where they could restock with supplies, and hear some rumours that can help them decide, where to start their search.In Lothering the effects of the Blight could be seen already... refugees tried to take shelter in the Chantry, and the inn was so pecked, that people slept on the floor. They met children, separated from their mothers, and Meira started to feel, that this is the other side of the war - the innocents, who didn't do anything. She first met Sten, outside the village, and asked him about his imprisonment... she had her doubts about recruiting him, but Morrigan convinced her to help the qunari. Sten joined her party, and soon, in the inn, she met a young Chantry sister, named Leliana, who claimed she saw a vision, and wanted to join her because of it. Meira once again, took all the help she could get. In the Chantry, they heard some rumours of the illness of Arl Eamon. This was also the place, and the journey it took to get to Redcliffe, when they started to grow close with Alistair - they supported each other, understood each other, tried to cheer up each other. And one night in the camp, in a very sudden, very crazy moment, the young man kissed her... at first, she was surprised, but she didn't feel bad about it at all. The kiss was somehow, scaringly natural.
When they finally arrived at Redcliffe, Alistair asked Meira to listen to him... and told that he was the bastard of King Meric. The mage was hurt because he didn't tell her earlier, but understood him better, when he said he somehow liked the idea of her not knowing. They went to the village, and found it in distress. Although Sten was against the idea, the team decided to help with the undead swarming the village at night... and they even found out, that Stens lost sword was with a warrior in town. The qunari finally got the chance to go back to his people, but he decided to stay, and help end the Blight.
After defeating the undead, and defending the town, they met the Arlessa, who asked Bann Teagan to go to the castle alone. They all knew it was a trap, so they decided, Meira, Alistair, Morrigan and Leliana would follow him using a secret passage to the dungeon. When the Arlessa left with Teagan, they immediately went to the mill to reach the castle in time.
However, they didn't expect what they found in the dungeon. In a cell, Meira recognized her old friend, the blood mage Jowan - who turned out to be the one who poisoned the Arl. Meira was angry because of his decision, but she realised, that he didn't have bad intents... he simply made a terrible mistake. She was convinced that he had to be punished eventually, but she remembered their friendship, and wanted to give him a chance... so she opened his cell, and made him swear that he tries to right his wrongs.
She wasn't prepared how soon that moment would come... when reaching the upper levels of the castle, they found out that the Arl's son was possessed, and Jowan appeared, offering aid with blood magic. Meira refused to use it, not, when it was at the cost of someone else's life, and asked for other options... Alistair suggested that she could go to the Circle of Magi for help. Meira agreed - after all, she still had a good relationship with the First Enchanter. Jowan was locked up again by Bann Teagan, so when he wakes up, the Arl could decide his fate, and Meira's team headed to the Tower.
Return to the Magi Tower
When reaching the Calenhad docks, Meira already knew that something was very wrong. The templars closed all transportation, it took tricks and lies to get through to the island. When reaching it, she learned that a couple of blood mages, led by a mage named Uldred, who holds most of the senior enchanters captive. Knight Commander Gregoir wanted to purge the tower, but Meira immediately defended the mages... she knew them, she knew that they couldn't all fall. She argued long enough to make the Commander let her enter the tower. She fought through her way through abominations, until she reached a hall with two young enchanters, some kids, and the senior enchanter from Ostagar, the older woman named Wynne. She immediately recognized Meira, and upon learning that she wanted to help the mages instead of purging the tower, she offered to go with her. Meira accepted her help without a moment of hesitation, and Wynne joined her, Morrigan and Alistair. They freed several mages along the way, and even defeated some blood mage groops, but once they were ready to go to the top of the tower, they were stopped by a strange abomination, that locked all four of them in the Fade.Meira first saw Duncan, and a future, where the Blight was defeated and the wardens became keepers of the past. Before that, she didn't even realise, how much she wanted this. A place, where she has comrades, where there is no war, only freedom, acceptance and friendship... but she was smart enough and dedicated enough to see past this beautiful dream. She realised that something is not right, that her life, her true life was far from this ideal, and challenged the demon... to realise she had to defeat five guardians, before getting the chance to free her friends and fight their captor. She soon learned to navigate through the Fade, and she found all of her friends. Morrigan found out she was in the Fade herself, but Wynne and Alistair was much harder to convince... Meira felt bad that she had seen their deepest fears and hopes. Together they could fight the Sloth, and get back to reality. They also got some help from a trapped mage, who couldn't return anymore... but left behind a spell that could help them defeat Uldred.
Before facing the blood mage, Meira and her friends found the young templar, Cullen locked - the young man was broken and exhausted, and he first thought that Meira was a vision, admitting to her, how he felt. Meira didn't want to hear this, not only, why she didn't want it during her time in the Tower, because she couldn't return his feelings, but also because she felt she shames, and pains the boy even further. When Cullen realized that they were real, he angrily asked them, to kill every mage left... Meira, despite feeling sorry for him, denied his request, saying that the mages could still be saved. Cullen couldn't stop her, when she headed to the top of the Tower. Using the Litany of Adralla, that they got from the young mage trapped in the Fade, they could defeat Uldred before he could turn the captive mages into abominations. Gregoir accepted that the tower was safe, once he saw First Enchanter Irving return, and he also agreed that the Circle should help against the Blight and in curing the Arl's son. Wynne asked Irving, and Meira if she could accompany her on her mission, and Meira gladly accepted her help.
Return to Redcliffe
Thanks to the Circle mages, back in Redcliffe, Meira could enter the Fade, and fight off the Desire demon that controlled Connor. The Arlessa was happy to see her son again, and it seemed, even Jowan had some good points because of his help. Meira knew that the Arl's condition was still critical, so she had to find a cure as fast as she could... and she knew that several knights were already sent to find the Urn of Sacred Ashes. She also had to go to Orzammar and the Dalish, to raise her army, so the team decided to head to the dwarven city, and than to Denerim, where they could find some information about the Ashes.
However, the road to Orzammar wasn't calm. Assassins ambushed the team, with an elf, named Zevran as their leader. They could defeat them, but the elf asked them, if he could offer his services, instead of Meira killing him... and she knew that another ally is better, that another dead enemy. So Zevran joined her on her quest.
When Arriving at Orzammar, Meira had to compete with Loghain's men, who also wanted to meet with the king. As a Grey Warden, the dwarves let her in, but she had to fight with the soldiers, who wouldn't leave without speaking to the leader. Meira let them live, but told them to give Loghain a message - that there are Wardens who know what he did at Ostagar, and those Wardens are coming for him.Soon she learned, that getting the dwarves aid won't be easy - they were currently caught up in a fight for the throne, between the king's only son, and right hand, whom he personally asked to take the throne from the prince. Meira knew that she had to take part in choosing the king if she wanted to have the help. She listened to people on the streets, soldiers... she trusted them more, than the participants themselves. She soon decided, that Lord Harrowmont was the far more honorable choice - and she needed someone who surely wouldn't go back on his promise. So she agreed to fight in the name of Harrowmont, while trying to ease the hardships of the poor dwarves, and helping the commoners. These were mostly selfless actions, but some of them carried the hope to gain new allies... for example, a young dwarf, Dagna wished to join the Circle of Magi as a researcher.
Once Meira dueled, and won in the name of Harrowmont, the Lord asked her to eliminate the threat of the Carta leader, Jarvia. Meira hoped to settle the conflict as peacefully, as possible, but she soon realised that it was a foolish thought. The fight in Jarvia's hideout soon turned bloody, and she had to return with the information that she killed the Carta leader. However, before entering the hideout, she visited the Tavern once, meeting Oghren, whom later became one of her most loyal friends... but at the time, just brushed her off, telling her about her wife, the disappeared Paragon Branka, and that he thinks everyone wants to find her only for one reason, to use her as a tool in crowning a new king.
Although Meira told Oghren, he was wrong, she felt bad once she received her next task from Harrowmont... to find Branka. She was truly a tool in crowning a new king... but since Meira desperately needed the help, she ventured forth, down to Ortan Thaig. She was joined by Oghren, who finally agreed that he believes she just wanted to help, Alistair and Morrigan, who were her companions most of the time. She followed a trail, using Branka's left behind journals, and some help from a mad dwarf Ruck (about whom she lied to his mother, saying he is dead, after he asked her), and ventured deep into the Deep Roads, finally reaching the Anvil of the Void, thought to be a myth by many. There she met Branka... who was very different from what she expected. Based on the journals, she hoped to find a curious, determined, but caring woman, who still had feelings for her husband - but Branka seemed cold, ruthless, and almost crazy about the Anvil. Once they were locked in, Meira decided to be cautious with her. It was a good decision.She, and her companions had to fight through several trials, before reaching the Anvil, and meeting the Golem of Paragon Caridin. The ancient Paragon told them his story, and asked Meira to destroy the Anvil, and never create more golems, knowing that they trap the souls of dwarves. Meira promised to help him, and when Branka insisted, she was ready to fight her. Oghren was deeply pained, and she was sorry, but she knew that there were no other options... they couldn't let Branka do what she did. When she died, Caridin asked Meira what she wanted for her help, but she turned down the offer, saying that Oghren lost the most, it should be his choice. Oghren, in the end, asked Caridin if he could help with choosing the king... and he used the Anvil one last time, to forge a crown, saying, that he doesn't even want to know, who will wear it. After that, he watched Meira destroy the Anvil, and committed suicide.
When she and her friends reached Orzammar, Meira was called before the Assembly, where she presented what happened at the Anvil. She didn't lie, and told, that Caridin chose her to determine who will be the new king, and once again, chose Harrowmont. Although Bhelen didn't accept defeat, Harrowmont became popular enough for their followers to join the fight in the assembly, and weaken the forces of the Prince. Once Harrowmont was crowned and accepted, he pledged the dwarven forces against the Blight, honoring the After es. Meira also met up with some of the Legion of the Dead soldiers, whom, after she asked them, agreed to fight by her side in the final battle. Oghren decided to join her team, and leave Orzammar... without Branka, he was nothing but a drunken warrior, who lost everything. As always, Meira welcomed any help, and tried to be as understanding and patient with the dwarf, as she could... she knew, how bitter this victory could taste for him.
Unexpected stop at Honnleath
After leaving Orzammar, Meira and her team headed to Haven, to Denerim, to learn more about the Urn of Sacred Ashes, that could save Arl Eamon. However, they were stopped by a merchant on the road, who sold them a control rod of a golem, telling they can find it in the village of Honnleath. There, after solving some riddles, and freeing the villagers, helping one of them by defeating a desire demon trying to possess his child, they could activate the golem - its name was Shale. Originally, Meira was awfully annoyed by her demeanor, but she decided to be patient... after all, even if it was hard to get on well with her, Shale was a tremendous asset. Shale started to open up to her, once she told her about what happened at the Anvil of the Void, and it even asked Meira to take it back to Cadash Thaig, where they could, perhaps learn of its past. Despite the delay, the whole team agreed, so before heading to Denerim, they returned to Orzammar once again, and searched the Thaig, learning Shale's past, who, starting to become more open and accepting, finally became a real part of the team.
When reaching Denerim, Meira knew she has a lot to do - and that it would be hard, with Loghain's man constantly on her trail. First, she had to find out the information about the Sacred Ashes. Second, Alistair asked her to search for his sister. Third, she had to find Leliana's old mentor - on the way several assassin's attacked them, searching for the bard, so they had to finish this business, so Leliana would be safe. And last, but not least... they were terribly running out of money. Despite having a lot of supporters, and a great team, travelling through Ferelden wasn't as cheap, as one would initially think... and getting money ended up being a lot more fun, than she thought - she was approached by a man named Slim Couldry, who wanted to teach a lesson to some nobles, and asked for her help. Leliana was a good thief, and Meira knew how to distract people, so basically, they stole some valuables throughout Denerim, easily replenishing their supplies, and earning and alterego.
On the marketplace, Alistair recognized his sister's house, and Meira offered to join him meeting Goldanna, knowing from the Fade dream, how much it meant to him... however, the meeting didn't really turned out how they expected it. Goldanna didn't care at all about her brother, only spoke about money... so Meira put some silvers on the table, and angrily left with her lover. Alistair was obviously pained, but the elf comforted him, and did everything to help him keep his positive views about the world, assuring him, that he had friends, and she cared about him.
After that, they visited Leliana's mentor together, and Meira supported the girl through the whole confrontation, making her sure that she trusted her, and valued her friendship, no matter the past. In the end, Leliana let Marjolaine go, and Meira agreed with her decision. Not soon after that they had a discussion in the camp, and Leliana told that she is more sure in her belief than ever, as well as in her decision helping her. Their friendship deepened a lot.
The case of the Urn was much more complicated. They met Brother Genitivi's assistant, Weylon in his house, but he acter strangely, and sent them to Lake Calenhad. While on the road, Oghren also asked a favour... he wanted her to help him with reuniting his former lover, Felsi. Meira mentioned that she wasn't the best wingwoman, but Oghren insisted, so she agreed. Before asking any problematic questions, they sought out a certain waitress, and eventhough Oghren and Felsi didn't part with total forgiveness and positive feelings, at least, it seemed there could be continuation to their relationship. After that, Meira tried to ask the Innkeeper about Genitivi and his research, but he acted jumpy, begging her not to ask too much... it turned out, his fear was well-placed, because upon stepping out of the Spoiled Princess, Meira and her team was ambushed by Cultists. They returned to Denerim as fast as they could and confronted Weylon, but he also attacked them. Soon, it turned out he wasn't Weylon at all, and Meira and her friends found some of Genitivi's research, which pointed at a village named Haven. It was obvious what their next stop will be.
Reaching Haven, Meira soon realised that something was very wrong with the village. In a house, they found human blood on an altar, a child showed her his greatest treasure, fingerbone he found in the mountains, and everyone said, continously, that they didn't belong to the village, and they should go away. Finally, Meira went to the village Chantry, meeting Father Eirik. She tried to be diplomatic, but the priest attacked, and she had no chance but to fight her. The villagers turned hostile, and she soon recovered a strange medallion from the corpse. In the back room, she found brother Genitivi, and with some help from Wynne, he could stand again, and tell her what happened. He also told her, there was a ruined temple on the mountainside, and maybe the medallion was the key. Meira cleared the way, so the injured brother could safely join them, and asked him to lead them to the entrance.
Golems of Amgarrak
After it all...
After the events of Awakening, Golems of Amgarrak and Witch Hunt, Meira was still the Warden-Commander of Ferelden, for a time. She continued her relationship with Alistair, and they shared both the responsibilities and the accomplishments of leading the Order. They spent a lot of time in Vigil's Keep, and also shared a small house near the gates of Amaranthine, where they could retreat whenever they were tired, and just wanted to spend some time together. Also they were often seen in Denerim, and they kept in touch with their friends (beside Oghren, who was a Warden as well) as much as they could.
However, the question of the Calling bothered them for years. Meira got some hints from Morrigan, they both knew of Avernus, and when they learned that the taint was somehow removed from Fiona, they realized they might have a chance to have a longer, full life together. Meira decided she had to follow the lead, for both of their sake. Alistair wanted to go with her, and truth to be told, Meira would have been happy to let him... but she knew that there were to many problems the Wardens had to face, and there was no one in the world she trusted more than her lover, so in the end, she set out for the journey alone. Inquisitor Éirinn Lavellan contacted her during her travels, for help, but Meira could provide little, since she couldn’t abandon her search. She sent a letter with an amulet as a gift, and asked Lavellan to keep Alistair safe for her… and although, she regretted, that the life of the Champion of Kirkwall was the price, she was happy, that she had the chance to be with her beloved again.
She’s in a relationship with Alistair, although it wasn’t easy to keep up. She was almost immediately attracted to the young man, when they met, and it wasn’t based upon looks… his humorous, almost childish attitude almost made her forget for a moment, that they were preparing for her Joining, and a battle. Her attraction grew even stronger, when, after the Joining, Alistair comforted her, and after Duncan’s death, she tried to return his help.They started flirting really soon during their journey, and started their relationship after their first visit to Redcliffe. It was absolutely rushed, and they knew that, but they felt like they had the right to try, when they were hunted almost everywhere. Of course, after the Mage Tower, when Arl Eamon suggested that Alistair has the strongest claim to the throne of Ferelden, Meira knew it would have dire consequences to their relationship. Alistair didn’t want to be king, she didn’t want to hurt him, so whenever they tried to talk about it, they never reached a conclusion, one of them changed the subject. Meira herself gave it a lot of thought, and although she once thought of the solution that she could become a Mistress, a lover even if Alistair is king, she almost immediately decided it was a bad idea. She was far too proud to accept this – just as she wanted to be proud of who she was, she wanted to be open and proud about her relationship. When she decided to support Anora, despite Alistair’s approval, she still felt selfish, and couldn’t talk about the decision until before the last battle. When she realized that she may die, before Morrigan mentioned her ritual, she sought out Alistair, and told her how she felt about it. Once again, the conversation turned into laughter, when Alistair said that she was truly selfish, but so was him – he never wanted to be king, and never accepted the responsibility. And although he didn’t approve it, thanks to Morrigan, they got the chance to be selfish together. During the Battle of Denerim, Alistair stayed with Meira till the end.
When Meira left searching for a way to end the Calling, she missed Alistair greatly, and vice versa. They both hoped, that once her journey is over, and hopefully she succeeded, they will truly have the chance, to be together, and don’t lose each other again. They never got married, but before Meira left, they decided they would do it, if she comes back with the solution. It wasn't a proposal, more of an agreement... Marriage never carried any meaning for them, since they never even thought of retiring, and starting a family. This way, when they would become husband and wife, it would mean something - not only that they love each other, but also that they have beaten every odds against them.
MorriganBest friend, and “probably” sister, and also a mentor in shapeshifting. Although Morrigan’s attitude makes her a bit hard to deal with, somehow, Meira could speak and cooperate with her quite easily from the beginning.Morrigan respected her skills, and ability to lead, and also that she didn’t act prejudiced, even though she was a witch from the wilds. She was also eager to learn from her, and Morrigan had to realize, that she could truly rely on Meira through hardships. They developed a really strong bond, with both respect and trust, which was hard to achieve, looking at their background. Meira truly considers Morrigan a part of her family, and in time, even Alistair learned to be at peace with her.
When Meira was captured, she named Morrigan, as the person she thinks will come for them, and she was right. Even when Morrigan decided to leave, upon the final battle, she told her she would find her, whatever it takes, and left her behind at the gates so she wouldn't be harmed while being pregnant.
Meira formed a deep friendship with Leliana. She had very strange views on religion her entire life, but as Leliana spoke of it, her own belief in some kind of god grew. Leliana's trust and belief helped Meira overcome great obstacles, and she also brought out her "girly side" - she never enjoyed talking about hair, shoes, or her love life with others, until she met her. Meira also enjoyed Leliana's stories, and she happily told them. Originally, they had some plans to travel across Ferelden, visiting several cities, just enjoying that the war is over, and they have time to appreciate the world as it is... sadly, this never happened. Leliana remembered Meira fondly even when they were apart for a long time.
Meira had an ambigous oppinion about the elf for quite a long time. When he suggested he would follow her, she knew she needed every help she could get, but it is still hard to trust an assassin who tried to kill you. She said no to his flirting at a quite early stage, hoping to inflict little damage, and cause little conflict amongst the teammembers - of course, she found him attractive and even his jokes had a certain charm, but by that time, she was already in a relationship with Alistair. When Zevran started to open up to her, as a friend, and as a part of the team, she started to realize, how many obstacles he had to overcome. When Zevran was no longer hunted by the Crows, and he suggested he could leave, Meira never told him to stay as a leader... she only asked him as a friend. Zevran agreed to it, and decided, his own journeys could wait - after all, he formed relationships that are worth fighting for.
Wynne was basically a mother figure, someone who comforted Meira in hard times, and even warned her, when she was about to do something stupid... and that meant that she wasn't always happy with what she said. She needed Wynne's mentoring, but occasionally, she felt like she started to speak about things that were none of her business - particularly her relationship with Alistair. Later, even after Wynne apologized, Meira had to realize, that her words hurt, because some part of her knew that she was right, and they risked too much with falling in love despite the odds. She trusted and respected Wynne, but never thought of her as an equal friend, she always stayed in the mentor/parent role.
When Meira first met Falon, he was ill because of the darkspawn blood... and she immediately felt connected to him, she just knew that he will be her dog. Although, after the battle of Ostagar she was quite sure he didn't make it, she couldn't not think of that poor mabari she thought she could save - she was overjoyed, much happier, than she let her companions know, when Falon found her on the road to Lothering. She gave him the name than... it was one of the few elven words she knew, and it meant "friend". And Falon was exactly that - a true, loyal friend, who could bring some comfort and joy anytime, even if he couldn't talk.
OghrenThe only dwarf, who could ever convince her, to drink something she didn't know the ingredients of... Oghren, at the beginning wasn't a particulary close friend to Meira, although he was certainly the craziest. But as times passed, Oghren proved to be one of her most loyal friends, and this loyalty deepened their bond. During the Battle of Denerim, Meira decided to leave the city gates in Oghren's hand, and when later he showed up in Vigil's Keep, saying that he wanted to be a Grey Warden, she felt happy, and terrified at the same time. She was a Warden-Commander, someone who had to lead, and she was afraid that if Oghren doesn't survive the Joining, she will be too broken by her friend's death, to lead others. Luckily, she didn't have to worry about that... Oghren passed the Joining without any problems. Meira felt terrible about how happy she was because of this, after losing one of the recruits. As his Commander, she tried to bring out the best in him, but she was also ready to talk about family problems - this resulted in Oghren taking a more active role in his daughter's life (also named Meira - although Meira only learned this weeks after helping Oghren resolve his conflicts with Felsi, and was deeply touched by it. She later had the chance to meet the "Nugget", and she absolutely adored her, although it was a bit weird to see a dwarf child with and elven name...).
Their friendship started out very rocky. Meira wasn't even sure to add him to the group, and even after fighting with him for a while, she had to realize they had absolutely different views of the world. She was often questioned about things like fighting even though she is a woman, about being a mage... she heard basically every insult from him, that she had to deal with in childhood and teenage years. But one thing, she wasn't prepared for... that Sten respected her for fighting him on these matters. Though they didn't agree, in the end, he judged her by her actions, by her arguments, and not because she was a woman, a mage, or an elf. And when the time came, he did what only few: he apologized. From then on, Meira knew that despite Sten's harsh and aggressive nature, she can always count on him, when battles come.
During the first few weeks with Shale, Meira basically just tolerated her presence, knowing that she needs her strength. She had very similar issues with her than with Sten... she treated her like some lower creature, simply, because she wasn't made of stone. However, after visiting Cadash Taigh, Shale slowly, and not by far as straightforwardly, as Sten, tried to apologize and speak to her. They bonded over very little things, that worked quite well as an ice-breaker... even girly things, like the look of the lightning and fire crystals attached to Shale. Meira asked her about her feelings regarding her past, her time in the village, and even her "femaleness", and after a time, Shale admitted that she acted insufferable at the beginning despite the fact that Meira was trying to be kind and good to her.
AndersRecruiting the young mage was a sudden idea for Meira, after she became a Warden-Commander, but she never regretted it. Since Alistair was away, fighting off the remaining darkspawn during the assault on Amaranthine and the Siege of the Keep, Meira often felt that she didn't only miss him as one would miss a loved one, but as one misses a friend... she missed his jokes, the way he teased every member of the team, but they still trusted him and relied on him, because they knew they could. Anders somehow became what Alistair would have been if she never felt attracted to him. Anders could teach others to "always look on the bright side", and they really needed that during the fight against the Architect and the Mother. Meira was happy to see, that Anders became a dedicated, and strong Grey Warden - when he merged with Justice, and it ended with tragedy, she even helped him get out of Ferelden, despite the fact that she knew she should judge him.
Like Anders, and basically all of the new recruits in the Order, Meira didn't plan to recruit Nathaniel... she simply didn't know what else to do with a hateful but not at all evil, and amazingly talented young man. Nathaniel wanted to feel connected to his family, and later wanted a chance to atone...so Meira gave him a chance for both. At first, Nathaniel seemed outward hostile with his Commander, but as Meira continued to support him, teach him, and lead him with honor, he started to feel respect, and after a time some kind of friendship towards her. Meira welcomed his apologies and trust, and she was happy, when it seemed Nathaniel truly found his place in the ranks of the Grey Wardens.
Meira had a hard time dealing with the elf, since she didn't seem to get along well with the other Wardens... she reacted violently to Anders' teasing, didn't appreciate Oghren's jokes, nor Nathaniel's curiousity. She was the only one out of the new Wardens, with whom Meira never really got close, and strictly stayed on a formal ground. She respected her strength and knowledge, but they rarely talked as friends. Nonetheless, when Velanna disappeared during the Siege of Vigil's Keep, Meira mourned her, and hoped that she only left, and she is not truly dead.
Meira could hardly understand how can Sigrun be cheerful, and even a little jumpy in one moment, and totally closed off and sad in the other. Of course, she dealt with hard situations, and people she could hardly understand, but there was something in Sigrun's duality, that gave her a really hard time. She respected the dwarf, appreciated her help, and trusted her enough to take her to the final battle without hesitation, when she asked. She was happy, Sigrun stayed with the Grey Wardens, and the news of her leaving for her Calling saddened her greatly... but she felt privileged to know her, even if they didn't become close friends.
Meira often joked, that Justice was her "inner voice". The spirit never failed to push her towards doing the right thing, even if this meant making their work a lot harder. Sometime, Meira felt simply annoyed by this, but mostly she appreciated Justice's assurance... and she felt a certain warmth, whenever he mentioned how he saw her as a pillar, and a symbol of the good things of the mortal world. She was ready to teach him of anything, and when he asked, she even searched for a lyrium ring for him. When she heard of his death at Vigil's Keep, she mourned him just as she mourned Velanna... although she was almost sure, that he didn't die, he just disconnected from the body.
- She has a deep interest in the elven culture, and basically anything related to it. When talking to Eadric, she mentions that she hopes she can learn the ancient language some day (she only knows a few words – for example, her dog's name), and she talks with him about history as well. This is mostly due to the fact, that she never had a chance to actually live in her culture, and also for the same reasons she cuts her hair short – since she is looked down on anyway she can kind of rebel against it, by being proud of her heritage.
- She likes nature, in almost every way – that was a big reason, why she asked Morrigan to help her become a shapeshifter. Despite the fact that she rarely uses the ability in battle, it lets her become a part of nature itself. Although she often picks wild herbs, to put her poor knowledge of herbalism to some use, she hates when someone picks a flower for no good reason – that includes the rose she got from Alistair. She didn’t mention it, of course, not wanting to hurt his feelings, but later, while they were rebuilding the order, she told him of her feelings towards this particular custom.
- She likes good stories, even when they are the same, simply told from different points of view.
- She likes storms. It’s most likely connected to her preference for lightning magic, but she really likes watching the lightning in the clouds during a far away storm, and even goes out to the rain sometimes during a summer shower.
- She doesn’t like sweets. She herself finds it strange, but she basically never eats anything sweet.
- She also doesn’t like meat. She is not a vegetarian, it would be very hard not to eat any meat in a middle ages kind of society, but she eats much less, than most people, simply because she doesn’t really enjoy the taste.
- She doesn’t like looked down on, and she despises slavery - when she met a slaver she didn't even consider being merciful, she killed the man without hesitation.
Other (hopefully) interesting facts:
- Her name (Meira) has Hebrew origins, and means “Light”.
- Meira’s voice is April Stewart – I could imagine her as a full voice actor for her, not only just catchphrases
- Meira is religious – but only to a certain extent. She saw the power of the Sacred Ashes, rarely turns down blessings, and overall, respects the Chantry, and believes in the Maker. But she doesn’t think, the Maker guides her every step, or even that he should guide them. She thinks that he will judge her by the way she lives, and not how much she prays.
- If she would be an animal, she would most likely be a halla - she leads as the halla does the dalish: she accepts others as followers, trusts and honors them, but never makes someone follow her. The halla also bears a resemblance to deers, which are considered to be symbols of peace and gentleness, but also strenght and grace.
- She uses the title "the Arl of Amaranthine" as a masculine word - never as "Arlessa". The reasons for this are very practical - and arlessa is someone who married into a family, and got the title this way, while she got it through fighting.
- When she makes tea, she pours the water first, and puts the leaves into the water - she doesn't care that this is not the proper way. (This element appeared in the first version of "A borrowed shirt". Later removed.)
A borrowed shirt - Anders needs to run away. After a Grey Warden (or at least someone he thought was a Grey Warden) sells him out to the templars, saying that he is an abomination, and he kills his pursuers, he can't stay. He has nowhere to run, so he asks the only person both him and Justice can trust, to hide him. Meira struggles with the decision to protect and help a friend who is changed forever, or pass judgement on him for his actions.