Morrigan, Flemeth, and the Inquisition

We know, now, that Morrigan will play an important role in Dragon Age: Inquisition. From past experience, we can guess that Flemeth will also be involved somewhere. BioWare has set the two against one another, after all.

I’ve seen some vehement defenses of Morrigan, some folks who insist that she’s sacrificing her happiness for the greater good in fighting Flemeth (and having that pesky Old God Baby). Rather than derail a thread or three there I thought I’d post my thoughts here.

The first of them is, “Poppycock!” While some people see our acerbic hedge witch as altruistic and self-sacrificing I see her as cold-hearted and calculating. She has an agenda, all right, but you have to consider who she opposes as well as what she says.

Flemeth has, in two games now, rescued a pivotal figure in Thedosian history to safety from certain death. In fact, she did it twice in what you discover in the prologue of DA2 is a remarkably short period of time, delivering the Warden and Alistair from the tower at Ostagar and then, presumably while they were unconscious at her hovel or moments after having ushered them off with Morrigan, whisking off to rescue Hawke and company.

Whatever her basic motivations, she’s shown herself to be willing to rescue people who are pivotal in the events that follow. One could argue that she saved the Wardens out of self-preservation and that she saved Hawke because she could see that he or she would foster the beginning of the mage-Templar war that lies central to the plot of DA:I. One could also point out that these two sets of people stopped a Blight and saved Kirkwall from the Qunari and would have died without Flemeth’s dragon-y intervention.

I cannot, however, credit Morrigan with actions that proved so beneficial to Thedas as a whole. The things that folks say prove she’s sacrificing her own happiness with the Warden for the greater good have not yet borne fruit. The OGB is not cannon, after all, and her absconding to the Orlesian court in disguise could as easily by the machinations of a baddy as those of a woman dedicated to stopping her powerful mother.

To date, in fact, my experiences with Morrigan have shown me a woman dedicated to something and far from willing, no matter how much she professes to care for my Warden, to tell me what it is. Granted, I don’t know what Flemeth has up her scaly sleeve, either, but she’s earned a little benefit of the doubt. Outside of following the Warden about Thedas with the hope of getting pregnant, what has Morrigan done for me lately?

What she’s done most often is express a disregard for other people’s lives. While it’s relatively easy to sympathize with her coldly amused descriptions of Flemeth toying with Templars in The Wilds, it’s harder to handwave her advocating the deaths of the captured elven slaves in exchange for more power.

“But,” you say, “it was Flemeth killing the Templars. Doesn’t that make her worse?” Perhaps. Then again, she’s a powerful creature and understandably bitter about people whose entire goal in life is to hunt down and imprison or kill her. I never said you shouldn’t find her frightening. The woman turns into a high dragon, after all! Yet her wicked sense of humor doesn’t stop her from bringing our heroes to their destinies, for good or ill.

Morrigan, on the other hand, refuses to tell you anything about that baby. Regardless of the situation, she leaves the Warden after she gets what she wanted then disappears through the Eluvian. She systematically hides and prevaricates about her motives. We have only her word for what was in Flemeth’s grimoire and what her mother told her. At least Flemeth doesn’t stoop to lying, she just give you cryptic hints, like Thedosian horoscopes that could apply to almost any eventuality.

In short, I don’t trust Flemeth but I trust Morrigan even less. I expect to find her behind the scenes in Dragon Age: Inquisition, pulling strings. I hope I will be allowed as the Inquisitor either to cut or to help arrange those strings. What I don’t want it to is to end up one of her puppets. I had enough ineptitude playing Hawke, who never could get Kirkwall to play nicely. I’d like the Inquisitor to accomplish something.

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