The tale of Aedan Cousland, a warrior of exceptional skill tempered by a diplomatic mind, ended when he sank the blade into the archdemon's head and destroyed it forever. King Alistair delivered the eulogy at Aedan’s funeral but the Grey Wardens recovered Aedan’s body, and interred them at Weisshaupt in a magnificent tomb next to Garahel's. Though he did not romance any of his adventuring companions, it has recently come to light that the late Aedan Cousland had a thing for barmaids. Over the last decade, a number of Aedan's prior dalliances have come forward and presented the late Warden's still-living brother, Teyrn Fergus Cousland, with the consequences of Aedan's carelessness—the consequences themselves being a number of children born out of wedlock, many of whom were conceived well before Aedan became posthumously named the Hero of Ferelden. As such, the Teyrn's had his hands full over the last thirteen or so years.
The Hero's Path
Prologue - Bloomingtide 9:30
• The Fifth Blight begins in the Korcari Wilds and southern Ferelden when the Architect attempts to perform a modified Joining ritual on Urthemiel in the hopes of freeing the darkspawn from the call of the Old Gods, instead Urthemiel is corrupted into an Archdemon.
• On the 8th day of Bloomingtide, the dam in Crestwood is broken in order to flood the invading darkspawn.
• The Couslands have stewarded the lands of Highever for many generations, dating even to before Ferelden's first king was crowned. They have persevered so long because of their reputation for justice and temperance, as well as their willingness to lead men into battle. With the rise of the darkspawn horde in the south, it thus falls on the Teyrn of Highever to send out the call once again: duty demands that an army be sent to King Cailan's aid at once.
• Born to wealth and power second only to royalty, Aedan Cousland found his training in both diplomacy and war put to the test when his father's castle is betrayed from within, by Rendon Howe, on the very night his elder brother, Fergus, led the family's forces to go fight the darkspawn horde in Ostagar.
• As a result of Rendon Howe's betrayal, a vast number of people are killed—including: Bryce Cousland, Eleanor Cousland (née Mac Eanraig; fun fact: Eleanor was the daughter of Fearchar Mac Eanraig, Bann of the Storm Coast), Oriana Cousland, Oren Cousland, Mother Mallol, Nan, Aldous, Iona, Lady Landra Loren, & Dairren Loren—the latter two being the wife and son of Bann Loren, respectively.
Early Justinian 9:30
Joining the Grey Wardens
Aedan Cousland learns what more about what it takes to become a Grey Warden.
Aedan and Alistair gather three vials of darkspawn blood from the Korcari Wilds.
Mid Justinian 9:30
The Grey Wardens' Cache
Aedan and Alistair meet Morrigan while securing several Ancient Treaties from the Grey Wardens' cache.
After the Joining
Aedan survives the joining ritual, becoming a full-fledged Grey Warden. He and Alistair are asked by King Cailan to light the beacon atop the Tower of Ishal, to signal Teyrn Loghain's men to flank the darkspawn.
The Tower of Ishal
After cutting through numerous darkspawn, Aedan and Alistair manage to light the beacon. The tower is overrun, however, and the pair are saved by Flemeth. They later wake up in Flemeth's hut, where Morrigan is present. She tells them of Loghain's treachery. Alistair grieves Duncan.
Lothering and the Imperial Highway
• Morrigan suggests travelling north to the village of Lothering to gather news and supplies. Lothering stands on the Imperial Highway: the gateway to the other locations across Ferelden to which the Warden must travel to gather allies against the Blight.
• A Landsmeet is called to determine the next ruler of Ferelden.
• Alistair narrowly wins the votes, with Aedan Cousland's help.
○ His supporters were: Alfstanna Eremon (Bann of Waking Sea), Eamon Guerrin (Arl of Redcliffe), Fergus Lendon (Arl of Edgehall), Franderel (Bann of West Hill), Gallagher Wulff (Arl of West Hills), Leonas Bryland (Arl of South Reach), Nicola Baranti (Bann of Denerim), Rodolf (Bann of Dragonmount), Sigard (Bann of Dragon's Peak), Valdur Krole (Bann of Ruswold Valley), Vaughan Kendells (Arl of Denerim; albeit in exchange for his freedom), Grand Cleric Elemena, and others.
• Loghain is executed by Alistair; Anora is placed under house arrest—whisked off to an undisclosed location.
○ Mac Tir supporters, who promptly fled Denerim, were: Ceorlic Jr. (Bann of Southern Bannorn), Loren (Bann of Oswin), Ser Cauthrien (Commander of the elite force known as Maric's Shield), and others.
• Those who were not in attendance of the Landsmeet, either absent or neutral...
○ Esmerelle (Bann of Amaranthine; absent), Fergus Cousland (Teyrn of Highever; absent), Grayson Thornecroft (Commander of the Drakestone Strategic Reserve; absent), Jevrin Barris (Bann of Lakeland; neutral), Karel Dusic (Bann of Sothmere; absent), Reginalda (Bann of White River; absent), Teagan Guerrin (Bann of Rainesfere; absent), Voychek Neruda (Arl of Stenhold; neutral), and others.
Mid to Late Drakonis 9:31
The Battle of Denerim
Fifth Blight Ends; Aedan Cousland makes the ultimate sacrifice, striking the final blow that killed Urthemiel.
• Though he won the support of many during the Landsmeet that ultimately decided who would sit on Ferelden's throne, not everyone in the nation supports King Alistair's claim to the crown. There are those who would still prefer the "Dowager Queen", Anora Theirin (née Mac Tir), as Ferelden's ruler. Some have even been bold enough to write to the King directly, all but demanding Anora's release from confinement. King Alistair and his royalist supporters presently face off against Anora's supporters, the latter calling themselves the Scions of the Land in honor of the Mac Tir name which means "son of the land".
• Eamon Guerrin serves as Chancellor and chief advisor to King Alistair Theirin. He is the King's designated Regent during the monarch's absences. He stepped down as Arl of Redcliffe to devote himself to the Crown.
• After the Fifth Blight, residents of Redcliffe Village, eager to leave the memory of the Blight behind them, gradually moved their settlement from the east side of Redcliffe Castle to the west. Old Redcliffe still exists, but has largely been abandoned. Also during this time period, Arl Teagan Guerrin married a Denerim foundry owner, and former native of Redcliffe, named Kaitlyn. When his wife's brother, Bevin, came of age Teagan named the young man the new Bann of Rainesfere.
• Fergus Cousland remains the Teryn of Highever. Though King Alistair remains unmarried himself, and as something of a jest shared between them, the monarch has been encouraging the widower to remarry.
• Though he did not romance any of his adventuring companions, it has recently come to light that the late Aedan Cousland had a thing for barmaids. Over the last decade, a number of Aedan's prior dalliances have come forward and presented the late Warden's still-living brother, Teryn Fergus Cousland, with the consequences of Aedan's carelessness—the consequences themselves being a number of children born out of wedlock, many of whom were conceived well before Aedan became posthumously named the Hero of Ferelden. As such, the Teryn's had his hands full over the last thirteen or so years.
• Lothering, likewise, continued to suffer after enduring both the Fifth Blight and having been stuck in the crosshairs of the Mage-Templar War. Unlike Haven, it might have benefited from it's location along the Imperial Highway but the Fifth Blight poisoned the land. While it's accepted that it will take decades for the soil to recover, efforts are still underway to help heal the Blight-scarred village. Given that Arl Leonas Bryland abandoned them during the Fifth Blight, many displaced Lothering natives have already pledged fealty to other leaders of the Bannorn. Though not yet a desirable location, should the settlement one day prove fruitful again its fealty to the Bryland's seems unlikely. Possibly in consideration of this, or perhaps solely out of goodwill, banns closer to the area have begun to provide aid and resources to the once lucrative trading outpost's cause. Nonetheless, many still refer to the area as the Blightlands. The Grey Wardens of Ferelden have begun using the Blightlands as a training grounds for new recruits.
• In Orzammar, King Bhelen quickly proved himself a reformer. Trade with the surface lands increased and caste restrictions were loosened. The casteless were permitted to take arms against the darkspawn in exchange for new freedoms. Bhelen's reforms quickly found him enemies within the warrior and noble castes, however, and after several assassination attempts, the Assembly was dissolved. The king then ruled alone—some said as a tyrant, others said as a visionary determined to drag Orzammar into the modern world. For the first time in generations, the line in the Deep Roads was pushed back, and a few thaigs were reclaimed.