Hmmm. Prompt. Isabela. Cullen. Autumn. IDEK.
She wasn’t exactly the woman Cullen expected to see in the Chantry gardens. “Oooh, Knight Captain,” Isabela said, grinning. “I do enjoy seeing a man out of uniform.”
He rolled his eyes, but allowed her to sit on the bench next to him. “What brings you here? I suspect it’s not quiet contemplation.”
“Shows what you know.” She didn’t elaborate; instead, she looked him up and down. “Why are you here? I’m pretty sure you’re not contemplating anything garden-like, not in nice clothes like that.”
Cullen surprised himself when he actually answered. “I was supposed to meet someone here, but apparently I’ve been stood up.”
“Awww. Silly girl, whoever she is.” Isabela bumped his shoulder with hers. “Her loss.”
That made him smile. “At least it’s a nice night to sit out here.”
“Yup. The weather’s going to turn soon, I can smell it.” Isabela looked up; for a moment, they both stared at the tree in front of them. The leaves had begun to shade from dark green to gold, and a smattering of gold littered the ground underneath. “I like coming around here this time of year,” she said. “The trees are all such pretty colors. There aren’t too many trees where I come from, and those that are there pretty much come in green and brown.” She was silent for a moment. “I prefer color in my life,” she finished, almost to herself. When Cullen looked sideways at her, in the light of the sunset, she looked almost … soft. Serene. Neither were words he’d usually associate with Isabela, from what little he knew of her.
Cullen opened his mouth to respond, but Isabela was on her feet before he could say anything. When she turned to look at him, her usual lascivious smile was plastered back on her face. “I hope your girlfriend shows. And if not, well, I’m always down at the Hanged Man.”
She winked, then turned to go. But as Cullen watched, she picked up a couple of leaves off the ground and tucked them into her pouch. In her hands, they almost looked like gold coins, ripe for the taking.
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