Heart of Darkness Orlais was a pretty enough place. Marsara roamed the great marketplace as merchants sold their wears. Though beautiful, the prices were enough to cripple a man. From what few things she did see, common goods were sold at uncommon prices. Marveling a sculptors pieces of art, Marsara was very aware of the looks she was getting. All of Tevinter knew of the infamous Mage-Templar war and the Elder One's resurrection. While the current Divine's policies were kinder to mages, the distrust of potential abominations scoured the common folk. Scared sheep powerless to do a thing. "Exquisite rendition of the fourth Duke." The artisan - hidden behind her mask - motioned towards the thing Marsara held in her hand. "But an uncommon taste amongst Val Royeaux." Marsara saw the green eyes of the artisan, her contact from what she gathered. All she was told by her order - the Venatori - was to meet a contact who sold pieces of art. Now, she had but to confirm. "I am a appraiser of the old art and history," she said. "When I reflect back on the histories, I stand in awe thinking how they may have shaped Thedas." The merchant regarded Marsara until she nodded graciously. "Such is the power of art, my dear lady. If I may have your time, my workshop is not far from here. My sculptures are more numerous there. Would you care to come along?" Nodding Marsara gestured to the artist. "After you." --- "Are you certain?" Marsara leaned back against a cushioned chair as she soaked in what the artisan told her. "There can be no mistakes. We've endured one set back. Another one won't be forgiven under his purview. Not for I or for you. How are you certain this artifact is truly what we seek?" "My network tells me, lady Tarakis," said the artist. "I've made sure to verify with many sources - discreetly of course. While it's surface is worn out and its scheme dated, that orb is what you seek. I've tried restoring it, but the hue won't change. Not because it won't, but the color returns to this no matter how thorough the cleaning. There is magic in it, lady. Can you not feel it?" Marsara could. That's what troubled her. What could the Council of the Venatori want with this? The magic - even for Tevinter standards - tasted foul. Marsara wanted to place it in a dark place and never touch it again. Unfortunately, that wasn't what she was bid to do. Confirm and retrieve. That was her charge. "I trust you've been compensated?" "To satisfaction," said the artist. "Shall I get it ready for travel?" Marsara nodded. "Other than you and I, who else knows of this orb?" "The two of us and a trusted art broker. I was discreet." "Good. Prepare it then." Watching the artist leave, Marsara settled into her cushion as she reached into her bag and retrieved a small book. It was for leisure. Though it wasn't an appropriate time for such things, all she could do was wait. Why not pass the time in good cheer? Turning the page, she still felt the orb on the grounds. Blood magic - no matter how small - could go a long way. If the artist carried out treachery, she would know of it.