Fandom: Critical Role (Web Series), Wiedźmin | The Witcher (Video Game), Wiedźmin | The Witcher Series - Andrzej Sapkowski
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Essek Thelyss/Caleb Widogast
Characters: Essek Thelyss, Caleb Widogast
Additional Tags: Alternate Universe - The Witcher Fusion, Alternate Universe - Fantasy, Witcher Caleb Widogast, Sorcerer Essek Thelyss, POV Caleb Widogast, Dungeon Crawl, plot heavy, Canon Typical Violence, mentions of canon typical torture, (for both canons), proper and improper use of Tether Essence, Fantasy Racism, playing fast and loose with d&d and video game mechanics, Cat School (The Witcher), basically a Witcher 3 quest but make it shadowgast, Spiders
Or: a Shadowgast Witcher AU in three parts, with art by @kurocyou.
Sometimes, when Caleb was in combat, his body took over his mind, turning him into a creature of instinct and muscle memory, of strength, perseverance and a willingness to survive, and most of all to kill. He didn’t like surrendering to the killer, but sometimes he had no choice.
Some tentative pre-relationship shadowgast homemaking from the other things that make us part two: Caleb's story.
“Do you, ah, cook much?" Essek asks.
It is not a question the Nein had ever asked him, and they probably wouldn’t, knowing he torched the place he would have learned. Essek knows some of his story, but less, and…it feels good to have someone ask him if he cooks, as if Caleb might be the sort of person who has their life together enough to do that. Maybe he could be.
“No, not much,” he replies. “They were not so keen to let me in the kitchens at Vergessen, and after that I was on the road. Pots, pans, ovens — they are a hard fit for pockets, even empty ones.” It feels- nice, to bleed some of the bile from that time, smooth it over with humor and mundanity so that maybe someday the edge will not be so sharp. A thought occurs to him, and he laughs. “When I did craft myself a pocket-sized kitchen, I made the cats do all the work, so still no. Our fumbling attempts here have been the whole of it, aside from- from when I was young.”
Out of the corner of his eye, he sees Essek glance when his voice wavers, but Essek makes no comment. He continues steadily cubing potatoes.
"You are good at it," he says to the cutting board after a brief beat of silence. "There is practice in your movements, so I was curious."
Something in Caleb's gut flips pleasantly at the idea that Essek has been watching him enough to form an opinion, and then again at the thought that his mother's skill lives on in his hands, so she is still here, in this small way.
I am now considering.... so here are three very loose concepts xD
1. Atlantis is Zemniaz, not fallen or struck down as legend says, but instead hidden away- Essek is a dunamantic researcher investigating the manipulations of time that have allowed the city to remain alive
2. Atlantis is Rosohna, and ages ago isolationism has turned the once grand city into myth- Caleb is a 'researcher' bridging the gap between the the Cerberus Assembly and the Cobalt Soul, trying to figure out what powerful secrets remain
3. Atlantis is Aeor, the stasis bubbles are actually portals to the still-bustling city- the wizards find their way in
Frumpkin was exhausted. Which was an extraordinary feat for a creature made from the wisps and whims of fey magic. The source of his predicament? Two wizards, five feet apart, in love, but too caught in their own heads to do anything about it.
It was one of the most frustrating things he had witnessed in his nine lives, and he was determined to do something about it.
imagine you are the director of the magic cia and you betrayed your home country because they denied your grad thesis and you thought everything was chill but then a group of people in bdsm gear burst into the room holding the god that you stole and you now have to babysit them and watch while they ruin the house your family gave them and you are also in a honeypot4honeypot situationship with their resident ginger and you teach him forbidden magics because he has nice eyes and you keep having to ferry them to fight dragons or some shit and they keep fucking inviting you to dinner so you go to dinner and they trap you, the traitor they’re looking for, in a truth spell and instead of asking any damning question they want to know which of them you find the hottest and what your moms name is and then they disappear for like two months and then you’re in disguise at the negotiation which undermines your past decades work and they fucking show up and they find out about your crimes so they paralyze you and drag you to their ship and instead of killing you the ginger kisses you on the forehead and they tell you that you’re family now and then they disappear for a long fucking time so you leave and go chill in the north and then they show up chased by a purple man with horns and a dead member of the fucking cerberus assembly and then they fucking dip and when you come back they take you to a flesh city to fight the purple man but they get really sad when they murder him so they revive him? and also you find evidence that the god that you stole is not a god and is some kind of hyper advanced magic computer maybe and then you just sort of fucking go home? and chill in a garden? every day essek thelyss wakes up.
Everyone gets more than one sentence, because I say so 🎉 I have a published fic where Trent nabs Essek after the Vergesson heist and interrogates him over dinner. In my WIP folder are chapters 2 and 3, which are hurt and comfort chapters respectively.
Have a snip from chapter 3.
"What is it you are looking for from me, Essek? What do you need?"
Essek blinks rapidly. His serenity flickers for a moment, composure a guttering candle in the breeze.
"To be of use," he says. It surprises Caleb, though it should not. Essek has balanced his life on the books of favors and utility, and recently come out wanting in every way that counts.
Eventually, the shivering stops. Essek's hands slacken where they clutch his coat, enough that his grip is loose and comfortable. Caleb can feel the bespelled echo of Essek's senses like he's slipped into a second skin. It is deeply intimate.
He speaks into the quiet space between them.
"It is of use to me that he no longer has you. It is of use to me that you are here, with us, as safe as we can make you. It is of use to me," he says roughly, "that I can hold you and share your warmth in this cold place, and know that it is life in your veins that I feel. That behind your eyes is my friend, still with us. With us for a while longer, I hope."
With me, he almost thinks, but it is not the time for selfish desires, not when they are all heading into a frozen nightmare, and not when Essek is less than a day free of Trent's shackles. If they survive what is coming, then maybe Caleb will let himself think such things.