He's got a bad hand, terrible in fact, and his opponent knows it. He glances down to his hand, back to his opponent then to his hand. Maybe he can bluff. No, tried that before, turned out badly. Lost his pants when playing against Isabela, never doing that again. His opponent grins, he glares right back. How can someone with such a terrible poker face beat him every time? They're cheating, have to be. Only way he can explain this winning streak.
He notices Anders at the door, a barely concealed smile on his face. Nice to know his misfortune is of such great amusement. He glares once more at his opponent, they're oblivious to it, still have that stupid grin on their face. He grits his teeth and throws his hand down.
His opponent jumps up and barks, tongue hanging out.
Beaten by his dog at Diamondback. Maker was there ever anything more humiliating?
His dog barks again and sits down, nudging its cards forward. He's going to kill Varric when he sees him again, he knew teaching his dog how to gamble was a bad idea. A bad, horrible, disturbing idea. Anders tries hard not to laugh, he glares at him now.
"All right, you don't have to gloat about it," he tells the dog.
The dog barks in response.
"Have you been playing Isabela? Did she teach you how to cheat at this?"
The dog whines and cocks its head to the side.
"Well you're still not very good, you still wag your tail."
The dog growls at him.
"What? You do."
"He's still better than you though," Anders adds, from his place at the door.
"You shut up. You're terrible as well."
"I'm not the one beaten by a dog."
He loves Anders, really he does, however in that moment, he could cheerfully throttle him. Anders takes no offence to the death glare he receives and laughs it off.
The dog picks up the coin pouch, after a few tries at least, and trots out of the bedroom. He blinks, shakes his head then blinks again. What is a dog going to do with that money? Has Corf suddenly started speaking 'dog' and going to serve him?
"Lose it to Isabela, I suspect. Or Varric might try and win back those ten sovereigns he lost last week," Anders remarks, one hand on his chin, thoughtful for a moment.
Oh, wait. He'd said that out loud. He hadn't meant to.
"Damn dog. Come home penniless and you're sleeping with Sandal!" he calls through to the dog.
The dog barks in response.
"Yeah, you heard me!"
He stands up. Anders comes into the room, wraps his arms around his waist and rests his head on his shoulder. He folds his arms, still muttering about his dog, even as Anders, kisses his cheek. "You can be such a sore loser, love," he says, then lets him go. "We'd never have this problem with a cat."
He tries to imagine the famed Ser Pounce-A-Lot, despite he knows nothing about the cat beyond what Anders has said and that the mage took it into the Deep Roads, playing Diamondback. Maybe the cat would beat his dog, that would sort it.
He mutters something else under his breath, Anders grins, he's just proving his lover right.
The dog returns that night, half its money lost and sure enough, is sent to Sandal's room. He's a terrible loser, when it comes to it, but damned if he'll admit it.