Fandom: Dragon Age
Rating: Explicit sex, very NSFW
Spoilers: For DA2, not really for Awakening
Notes: This began life as a fill for this year's DA Kiss Battle. I didn't crosspost it to AO3 along with the others because I thought it would make a nice little threesome story, and Nathaniel Howe Week on dragonagefanweek seemed as good a time as any to expand on it. This is about as close as I get to PWP. Established Bethany/Nathaniel relationship, past Nathaniel/Anders and Bethany > Anders.
Also on AO3.
The ship for Ansburg wasn't scheduled to depart until dawn, and so Bethany accepted her brother's invitation for an evening at the Hanged Man. She and Nathaniel spent the entire night there with Garrett and his friends -- drinking, talking, laughing, drinking some more. Somehow she ended up in a corner, wedged next to Nathaniel and Anders, who chatted away most of the evening, swapping gossip about the other Wardens of Vigil's Keep. Eventually, the others all drifted away, each one leaving her with a kind word, a pat on the shoulder, a fierce hug from Garrett, and lastly Isabela, sauntering off on his arm with a wink.
Bethany had a good guess what that wink was for. She leaned back against the wall and watched Anders and Nathaniel talk, admiring the rare light in Nathaniel's eyes -- normally, it only appeared when they were alone, or visiting his nephew. Then Anders laughed, a warm and hearty sound that made her toes curl. She wondered if the men even realized that the rest of the party had gone. She cleared her throat, and they both looked up at her.
"It's late," she said. "Perhaps we should get to bed." Turning to Anders, she held his gaze; he lifted a brow, and his eyes widened at her implied invitation. Then he smiled, slowly, and gave her a small nod.
"You're right." Nathaniel's nod was reluctant, and Bethany hid a smile; unlike Anders, he hadn't caught her meaning. Nathaniel stood and held out a hand. "Good night, Anders," he said, voice rough. "It was good to see you."
Bethany looked at Anders, indicating her permission, and then he took Nathaniel's hand in his as he rose to his feet. "Likewise," he said, and then he tugged at that hand to pull Nathaniel close, kissing him on the mouth.
Startled, Nathaniel tensed, his free hand forming a fist, his eyes flying open. Then they fluttered closed and he leaned in, his hand relaxing as it fell on Anders' hip, and kissed him back; as she watched, Bethany's breath caught in her throat. The men broke apart and stared in each other's eyes for a long moment. Then Nathaniel's eyes flicked downward before turning back to Bethany, expression sheepish. "My apologies, Bethany, it won't--"
Before he could finish the sentence, Bethany was on her feet, her hands framing his stubble-covered cheeks, then kissing him, hard, her lips caressing his, her tongue darting into his mouth; he responded, pressing her back into the rough brick wall. "Or maybe," she said, winding a hand around the back of Nathaniel's neck, glancing at Anders through her eyelashes, "it will."
Nathaniel pressed his forehead to hers, his breathing as quick and heavy as her own. "Are you sure?"
She kissed him again, lightly, a touch filled with promise and desire. "Oh yes."
"In that case..." Nathaniel reached out a hand, and Anders took it, winding their fingers together. "Lead the way."
Bethany grasped Nathaniel's other hand and pulled them both up the stairs. She had rented a room to give her and Nathaniel a night of privacy, far from the other Wardens, and now the advantage was even more clear. The Hanged Man was noisy and flea-ridden, and the food was of questionable provenance, but it would still be far more comfortable than the back room of Anders's clinic. Nathaniel clutched her hand the whole way, and as she reached the door and set the key in the lock, he leaned into her, pinning her against the door, and lowered his lips to her ear, nipping it lightly.
"Are you--" He murmured the words, his voice deep, buzzing with uncertainty and need. "You are truly certain about this?"
Bethany turned around to face him, hands splayed over his chest. He looked down at her with concern in his gray eyes. "I said I was, didn't I?"
He lowered his thick lashes. "Anders and I-- it was-- I cared for him greatly. I still do. But I never want you to think that you aren't enough for me."
She stood on her toes and brushed her lips over his. "You have room in your heart for both of us."
Nathaniel swallowed, and he lowered his head to hers for another swift kiss. Bethany wound her arms around his neck, hugging him close, and they kissed again, three times in succession, lips parting, until she pulled herself away. "Now," she said, smiling, "shall I open the door?"
"Please." Bethany turned around again, Nathaniel's arms still around her waist, and turned the key in the lock, opening the door into their small room. Wriggling free of Nathaniel's embrace, she went to the table next to the bed and lit the lantern with a spark from her fingertip. As she stood, Anders followed them inside and closed the door behind him, then stopped, his hands pressed into the door as he looked at Nathaniel, eyes bright with longing. Bethany sat down on the edge of the bed and took off her shoes, quiet as a mouse, determined not to intrude on this moment.
Nathaniel had not spoken often of Anders or their past relationship, but Bethany knew they had been close friends as well as lovers, and that Nathaniel had missed Anders a great deal. Perhaps even more than he had been willing to admit, from the expression on his face. He lifted his eyes to Anders and raised a shoulder, questioning. "So it is you... and Justice?"
Anders nodded. "He is with me, always." He tipped his head sideways. "Does that bother you?"
"No," Nathaniel said, hands curling into light fists. "I only wonder what he thinks of this enterprise."
"His thoughts are my thoughts," Anders replied. He stepped forward, laying his palms on Nathaniel's chest. "I am-- glad to see you. To be with you. But only tonight. When you leave tomorrow, I will stay in Kirkwall." He lowered his eyes, then looked up again, straight at Nathaniel. "Not negotiable. My life is here; my cause is here." Stepping back, he trailed his fingertips down Nathaniel's leathers. "If you cannot accept that truth, then I cannot stay."
Nathaniel lifted his hands to Anders's shoulders. "I won't lie -- if you changed your mind, and decided to come back to the Grey Wardens, I would move mountains to ensure their acceptance, of you and Justice both. But--" He drew his hands down Anders's forearms and closed his fingers around his elbows in a gentle grip. "I understand why you can't. And if tonight is all we have..."
"Then we ought to make the best of it," Anders concluded, his face mellowing into a smile. He leaned up and kissed him, disappearing inside Nathaniel's arms. A minute passed before he drew away, resting a hand on Nathaniel's cheek. "You're good at that. I'd almost forgotten," he murmured. Then he leaned out to catch Bethany's eye. "Sorry."
Bethany leaned back on her hands with a smile. "Oh, don't mind me. I'm just enjoying the view."
"Perhaps we should give you a better one." Anders turned sideways, bringing Nathaniel around with him, then kissed him again, first a light brushing of lips, followed by a closer press, drawing Nathaniel's lower lip into his mouth. Bethany could feel her own lips tingling at the sight of the two of them, lost in their kiss, hands roaming over backs, arms, and hair. Then, without breaking the kiss, Nathaniel began to open Anders's coat, hands sliding over the buckles, undoing them one by one.
Bethany found her gaze drawn to Nathaniel's fingers; she always loved to watch his hands, but somehow they were especially hypnotic tonight: working the intricate buckles, sliding each metal ring around and tugging the join through the strip of cloth. When the last one came free, she found herself disappointed. He pushed the coat off Anders's shoulders, and lifted a hand to his cheek, first brushing it with his knuckles, then turning his palm to bury his fingers into Anders's hair. Anders lifted his chin, and Nathaniel's mouth traveled to his cheek; Anders sighed, and Bethany heard a familiar groan, one that turned her insides to jelly.
She must have made a noise aloud, because Nathaniel lifted his head and looked at her, eyes hooded. "Join us," he murmured.
Bethany raised her eyebrows. "And give up my front row seat?"
Anders held a hand out to her, and she stood up, took it. "I think you'll trade it for a kiss," he said, and he pulled her in, settling his mouth on hers. Bethany closed her eyes and tightened her hand in Anders's grip. His mouth was smaller than Nathaniel's, smoother, and she remembered long hours looking at that mouth, in camp on the Wounded Coast or over drinks in the Hanged Man, looking and wondering what this would be like. But she'd held back, just like she'd always held back. Until Nathaniel. And now she felt Nathaniel's appreciative eyes on her as she kissed Anders, enjoying the gentle pressure, the taste of mead and just the slightest snap of lyrium behind it. A hand ran over her hair, down the back of her head, and she registered the touch as Nathaniel's; she reached out for him, and he stepped in to embrace them both.
She broke off the kiss and smiled at Anders, who smiled back, then looked up at Nathaniel. "Now what?"
A small wrinkle appeared between Nathaniel's eyes. "I confess, I am not certain." He shrugged. "I've not done anything like this before."
Anders shook his head with a chuckle. "Good thing I've been around this block a few times, then, isn't it?"
Bethany lifted an eyebrow in his direction. "Have you?"
Anders looked back at her, a half-smile on his face. "It might be faster to list the things I haven't gotten up to, at one point or another." Nathaniel snorted, and Anders cast him a quick fond look. "Oh, don't lie; you enjoyed that about me." He turned his attention back to Bethany. "It made it easier, sometimes, in the Circle, to have distractions. Most of the templars looked the other way, as long as we were discreet." He lowered his eyes. "But now... it's been a long time. I preferred to avoid the distraction. But to spend a night with two people I care about?" He directed a warm smile at Bethany, then a sadder one at Nathaniel. "One night of distraction. Well worth it." His shoulders raised in a deep breath. "Now, it seems we are all wearing entirely too much clothing and armor."
Nathaniel chuckled. "I think that can be corrected," he said, as he undid the lacings of Bethany's robes, then pulled the robes up and over her head, his hands skimming over her bared back. He leaned into her and kissed the back of her neck, lips trailing up and over her ear. She closed her eyes and sighed, then gasped in surprise as Anders's mouth found the other side, kissing the pulse in her neck, then the hollow of her shoulder. Four hands, she could count them -- one on each hip, another cupping her shoulder, and the last -- Nathaniel's, she was almost certain, working at the fastenings of her breastband. She felt it fall, and then his fingers traveled up her torso on their way to her right breast, tracing a circle around the nipple, holding its weight. A moan came from deep in her throat, and then she forced her eyes open.
"I sense-- inequality in this state of--," she managed, before Nathaniel nipped at her ear, cutting off her words with another gasp.
"So you do," Nathaniel murmured. "Would you do the honors?"
In answer, Bethany lifted Anders's tunic over his head, then brought her hands down to the buckle of his belt and the laces of his pants, undoing each in turn. She started to kneel to remove his boots, but Anders stopped her with a hand on her arm. "I'll do it," he said, and he pulled them off, followed his pants. "Now, young master Howe," he said, "it's your turn." Bethany stepped aside as Anders took apart Nathaniel's breast plate, removed his undershirt, and undid his trousers. Without a word, he pushed down the trousers and Nathaniel's smallclothes in one motion, and then he was down on his knees, his hands framing Nathaniel's hips, and his mouth fastened around Nathaniel's cock. Nathaniel and Bethany both gasped: she stumbled back to the bed; he let his hands fall to Anders's shoulders.
"Anders," Nathaniel groaned. His fingers flexed, caressing Anders's neck, his cheek, tangling in his hair. His eyes closed and his lips parted, chin tilted just slightly upward as Anders worked lips and tongue over his cock. Bethany watched, her own mouth half open, her heartbeat rising at Nathaniel's fluttering eyelids, his rapid breathing, the length of his cock appearing and disappearing into Anders's mouth. She felt her pulse pounding in her chest and lower down as well, enjoying Nathaniel's pleasure while also envious of it.
"Maker, Anders, please," Nathaniel murmured. "Please."
Anders paused in his work, then backed away. "Too soon, then?" He looked at Bethany. "Perhaps your lover would like a go." Rising to his feet, he took Bethany's cheek in his hand. "Or perhaps you'd prefer a turn of your own?"
The possibilities were dizzying, and Bethany's head only swam more as Anders bent to kiss her, first her mouth, then her neck, then her breast, lips fastening on the nipple as he eased her down to the bed. As she lay back, another hand laced into her hair, and Nathaniel came in for a kiss, pressing his mouth hard against hers, tongue buried deep. She wrapped her fingers around his cock, still stiff and slick from Anders's mouth, and applied a gentle squeeze; he groaned and kissed her even harder, sucking on her lips.
Meanwhile, Anders was sliding off her smallclothes, a hand cupping her bare buttock, stroking her skin. His touch was sure and even, the callus patterns on his fingers so different from the archer's ridges on Nathaniel's fingertips and palm; for a moment it jarred her, and she broke away from Nathaniel, looking into his liquid eyes. How strange, to allow another person such freedom of her body.
He cocked his head, and touched her cheek, gentle, loving. "Bethany? Are you all right?"
She nodded. "Just-- a bit distracted there. Come join us." She scooted backward on the bed, up to the pillows, and threw off the covers, while Nathaniel removed his boots and took his pants all the way off. Anders sat up against the headboard, fully naked now as well, and Bethany took a moment to look at him: his chest and legs lightly covered in red-gold hair, his half-hardened cock nestled against his thigh. She stroked his roughened cheek, his thick hair. "I never told you how much I admired you," she said. "When we were walking the Deep Roads, looking for a way out, I thought about confessing my crush on you, about getting you alone by the fire one night. Then I got sick, and it was too late."
Anders covered her hand with his. "And I never told you how beautiful you are," he said. Then he looked up at Nathaniel with a smile. "Fortunately, I think Nathaniel here has that covered. You're very lucky, you know," he added, voice turning serious. "Not everyone can find someone to love, especially not in the Grey Wardens. Hold onto that, for as long as you can."
Bethany caught Nathaniel's eye, a gentle smile on her face, and he nodded. "I certainly intend to," he murmured. She sat up, and he kissed her, languid this time, caressing her lips and stroking her hair. She reached for him, and he reached back, wrapping his arms around her. Then he slid downward, his mouth touching her neck, her collarbone, her breast, his hand tracing her thigh and then skimming her mound before working a finger inside the folds. She sighed, then gasped as he found her nub, stroking it, first lightly, then faster and faster. Her hips rose unthinking, working with his rhythm... and then Nathaniel sucked in a sharp breath as Anders moved into his side, fastening his lips to his neck.
Anders leaned in closer, his mouth next to Nathaniel's ear. "Shall I continue?"
Nathaniel turned to Anders and responded with a hard kiss for him, then for Bethany. When she opened her eyes again, she could see Anders trailing kisses down the back of Nathaniel's neck, his hand tracing the curve of Nathaniel's spine, then lower down, a finger disappearing into the seam of his buttocks. Nathaniel froze, his finger perfectly still against Bethany, and then he sighed, a delicate shudder passing through his whole body.
Anders leaned his forehead on Nathaniel's temple. "Do you have anything we can use?" he asked, patting Nathaniel's ass suggestively.
Nathaniel shook his head, his eyes still tight shut, but Bethany nodded. "Rendered bear fat," she breathed. "For making salves. In my satchel."
Anders looked at her with a grateful smile. "Thank you." He kissed the tip of her nose, then her lips. "I'll be right back."
Bethany kissed Nathaniel's cheek; he turned into her mouth and kissed her back, and she stroked his temples, slicked back his hair. He shifted his body to nestle between her thighs, and she lifted her leg around his hip, rolling them onto their sides. Then he buried his cock inside her; they exhaled in unison, their joining complete.
She closed her eyes for a moment and tipped her head back, content to feel him there, unmoving for now; his lips caressed her throat, his hand stroked her side. The bed shifted under Anders's weight, and Bethany opened her eyes. He was watching, eyes intent on Nathaniel's back, the tub of grease in one hand, his cock, at attention, held loosely in the other. Then he met Bethany's gaze with a nod, setting the tub down on the bedside table before scooping out a good dollop of the stuff with his middle finger.
"Nathaniel?" He laid clean hand on the middle of Nathaniel's back. "Are you ready."
"Yes," Nathaniel replied, softly, his hot breath buzzing on Bethany's neck.
Anders laid down on his side, behind Nathaniel, and slipped his finger inside. Bethany felt Nathaniel tense, first pushing more deeply inside her, then pulling out as he reached up to meet Anders's hand. She let her head fall back to the pillow, watching Nathaniel's face, his eyes losing focus and his mouth falling open as Anders worked himself in, slowly, until his hand was flat against Nathaniel's ass. Nathaniel groaned, then spasmed, first rocking back into Anders's hand and then forward into Bethany. Anders leaned forward, placed a hot kiss on Nathaniel's neck, and Bethany mirrored the action, resting her lips on his collar bone.
"Now," Anders murmured, and with a deep moan, Nathaniel thrust forward, his cock inside Bethany harder than she had ever known it to be, fucking her hard and fast. And she let go with him, returning every thrust with one of her own; she rode him, one hand pressed against his back, while the other reaches out and finds Anders, their fingers tangled, their palms pressed together.
Nathaniel's breathing turned ragged, each breath a sobbing gasp. "Bethany-- Anders-- Maker-- I can't-- Aah!" He drew in a sharp breath and then he shouted, an incoherent noise of release as he thrust into her again and again, his whole body shaking. Anders embraced him from behind, pressing his chest into Nathaniel's back, kissing his neck; Nathaniel turned around and kissed him, then turned to Bethany, his mouth fastened to hers, still quivering. His hand crept between them and stroked her, finishing her off; she closed her eyes and threw her head back as she came, her hips bucking into Nathaniel's, squeezing Anders's hand, letting the pleasure course through her. Then she collapsed, her forehead falling against Nathaniel's shoulder.
The three of them lay thus for a long time, breathing in unison, bodies still joined and slick with sweat. When she felt ready to speak again, Bethany lifted her head and caught Anders's eye. "Sorry you didn't get a turn," she said.
Anders looked back at her with a warm smile. "The night is still young," he replied. "Thanks, especially, to the legendary Grey Warden stamina. I expect I'll have my opportunity soon enough."
Bethany laughed, and she felt Nathaniel's chuckle as much as she heard it, vibrating in his chest. Anders kissed her forehead, then nibbled the edge of Nathaniel's ear. She rested her head on the pillow, watching as Nathaniel pulled away from her and took Anders in his arms, mouth on his neck and then lower, leaning him back against the headboard, the lantern light still bright. Yes, she decided, the night still held many pleasures for them all. She couldn't wait to see what might be next.
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