This van labeled HAZARDOUS MATERIALS is also on its way to school.
The van hits a patch of black ice. It goes spinning, it turns over, it slices itself open on a wrought-iron fence with spikes, and it disgorges boxes which smash open on the pavement. Some of them skitter clear into the slush.
Some of them - along with most of the van - land on Annie.
There is a whirl of bewildering pain and confusion -
- and she falls to the ground, injured and in more kinds of discomfort beyond that and moaning.
She slowly starts to heal before the eyes of her sole witness.
"I bet archdemons care a lot about that."
"I was originally going to say that any more than that would probably indicate that we failed to save the world and everyone died and now the archdemon is ravaging Orlais, but then I realized it would also mean we'd have to delay our wedding."
"...Perhaps surprisingly, I care more about everyone not dying than I do about how promptly we get married."
"Me too. I just - it's a different type of problem. Missing our wedding is personally annoying in a way that the end of the world isn't quite."
"I guess that's one way of putting it."
Hug! "Do you want to come with me to the encampment to look for the one elf who was interested in the food-selling thing? Or I can just tell her myself, but she might have other questions I wouldn't know the answer to."
"I'll talk to her. Might as well."
So Annie picks up her sign so no one will wonder who to ask how to profit off dwarven classism and holds hands with Stalas and heads encampmentward, seeking Danyla.
"This is my husband, Athras. He's also interested in your opportunity," she says.
"And I'm Stalas," says Stalas. "Pleased to meet you both."
"Hi, Athras. Stalas can write you a letter that in theory could get you into Orzammar," says Annie, "but in practice it's possible the guards will decide to argue with a letter and then you'd be waiting around until we came back. We could also just bring you back with us after we're done on the surface, though."
"No, we're heading straight home after the Blight's taken care of," says Stalas.
"Okay, so we'll find you then. There's more likely to be stuff to actually do by then anyway, the potatoes were planted pretty recently."
"Does that take care of your hiring needs, then?" asks Stalas. "Should we go find Tev and Metella and see if they've organized anyone to receive darkspawn disintegration magic?"
"Darkspawn disintegration?" says Danyla.
"Yeah," says Stalas, "it comes with constant uncomfortable warmth, though, so it has to be distributed with frost amulets to mitigate the problem. We brought several wagonloads of them from Orzammar, it's just a matter of getting people lined up and explained to."
Danyla boggles a bit. So does her quieter husband.
"I have several weird distributable magical powers with side effects," explains Annie. "Anyway, yes, that seems like it's next."
They go find Tev, who directs them to where Annie can stand by a barrel of frost amulets and distribute her magic to a line of volunteers from among the Fereldan soldiers.
And Annie stands there and goes tap tap tap tap tap.
After that come a smaller number of volunteers from among the Circle mages. Then it's getting late and everyone can go to sleep. Then in the morning the elves have their volunteers organized, and that afternoon, the armies set off for Denerim, capital of Ferelden.
Annie is pretty thoroughly a noncombatant, disintegration power or no. Maybe she should park in a medical tent and distribute regen to anyone who didn't already get it and changed their minds on meeting a sharp object?
After days of marching and periodic scuffles with darkspawn, the army reaches Denerim. Morale is high, especially after seeing what the glowing Legionnaires with the disintegration power can do to any darkspawn that get in their way.
Still, the size of the darkspawn horde visible outside the city walls the next morning is... intimidating.
Stalas isn't intimidated. His casual confidence steadies the doubters wherever he goes.
When the darkspawn charge the city gate, the healers' station gets news from the front line with every wounded soldier, of which there aren't many. That huge qunari killed one ogre, and the dwarven prince killed three. The darkspawn have broken down the gate, but the archers and the blightkillers are keeping them contained - 'blightkiller' being someone's term for the people with the darkspawn disintegration power. The dwarven prince has now killed six ogres. He's not even a blightkiller. The last one he beat to death with a hammer taller than he is. What have they been doing down in Orzammar that came up with blightkillers and that?
(Annie is very interested in all available reports of the dwarven prince. She is very nervous about her dwarven prince.)
Someone spots the archdemon in the sky. Shortly afterward, someone spots one of the Wardens, flying toward it while glowing bright blue. Shortly after that there is a lot of yelling, and then the yelling turns to cheers. The archdemon is dead; everything after this is just cleanup.
That makes Annie less nervous!
"No, I'm completely fine and I have the healing power anyway, I just want to talk to Annie," he says to the person at the door of the warehouse that has been serving as an infirmary. "Sure, I'll wait here."
"Prince Stalas wants to talk to Annie," the doorperson calls.
Annie goes out as quickly as she can without actually breaking into a run or guaranteeing she'll capsize en route.