Anankis Miri of Tyranny of Dragons – 02: Missions

From the Chronicles of Anankis Miri

by Mishkamist of EPK

What am I looking at?

Why  has that disgusting creature the opportunity to speak, to think… to live?

His mere presence sickens me; his raspy and deep voice makes me uncomfortable: it reminds me of a  muddy and dragged sound I heard years ago in the forest during a heavy rain.

I close my eyes and take a big breath, rethinking to the last hours, after the seizure of the men in blue dresses.

Escobert helped us with our injuries and he brought a strange man:

“He can help you,” said the dwarf, in a tone which allowed no reply, before moving away.

The man in front of us had his entire body and a large part of his face covered by dark clothes, only a small portion of his face was exposed: deep, blue eyes and pale blue skin.
I never, never, saw a blue person. I’m sure I’m not crazy but no one said anything about… However I’m too curious about him!

I stared at that man for a long time, trying to draw his attention to me, till midnight came and a bell pealed! Escobert’s loud voice resounded in the Fortress:

“They’re attacking us! The sally port… They’re finding a way into the gate’s heart!”

Me and my new companions rushed towards that place. Thanks to my city’s knowledge and my velocity I was the first person at the gate: there a group of four kobolds, led by a man in blue clothes, with a big green lizard, was destroying the door; when I faced out an enormous fire column almost hit me: thanks to my reflexes it didn’t hurt me.

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As always my blood turned hot, burns and signs appeared on my skin and hate crowded my mind: my only desire was to kill those creatures that endangered my beloved Greenest.

I think Shill killed the man in blue and a kobold while our blue-skin man slew one other kobold from behind and hit the lizard I killed one moment later… I’m sure I slaughtered that beast and a kobold, ‘cause I can clearly remember their blood and the satisfaction that filled my entire body.

Right away, behind the corpses, a new group of kobolds and men in blue, guided by a big and strong human male: thanks to a Shill’s brilliant idea, we decided to set on fire the corridor between the destroyed door and the still intact gate, barricading it with the help of Escobert and other four guards.

Immediately an explosion and people flying upon our heads attracted our attention: atop the castle the dragon flew and breathed lightning on the Fortress; after few moments of dread the enormous blue dragon went away, vanishing in the darkness of the night.

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Escobert allowed us an hour to rest: after a little nap and treatments from city’s doctors the dwarf reappeared with the governor.

“Follow us. We interrogated the prisoners and, now, we have some information you must know.” Tarbaw’s face was gaunt, marked by worries, like his own voice.

The prisoner we saw had evident bashes.

“This man, like the other out there, is a member of the Dragon’s Cult and now they’re gathering a treasure for the Dragon Queen, for her resurgence.” Tarbaw’s tone showed his contempt.

The blue man, I don’t know his name still now, asked the prisoner if he knew three men.
Frulam is our head on the battle ground; instead Rezmir is our formation chief. The third…I don’t know who is.” The prisoner said with faint voice.

I’ve never heard those names but I understood one thing: this Frulam is here, in Greenest, and she’s managing the assault to my city.

I promise to myself: I’ll find her.

I’ll find her then I’ll kill her with my own hands.

With quietness and polite manners our blue-skin man was able to obtain an essential information: the location of their campsite. After this our companion gave a strong slap to the prisoner, then we went out, returning outside.

“Time is against us. Other citizens are prisoners in Chauntea’s Temple.” The Governor’s voice was trembling but his eyes were resolute. “I have no guards to send there to save our countrymen… I know it’s a hard venture but you’re my last hope to save them.”

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Obviously I accepted immediately and the same did Shill, Lei and Daeron; the blue man had some hesitations but, in the end, he joined our group.  Escobert supported us with one guard, Margut.

The guard has brown hair and gentle eyes: I saw him a couple of times in Greenest but I never talked to him.

We left in the night darkness, through the secret passage we used earlier.
After few minutes Chauntea Church stood out in the landscape: we circumvented the building, reaching the secondary door, because in front of the Church six kobolds were trying to tear down the main door while two cultists flanked them: a man with a pitted face and a shiny armor and a curved sword managed that group with nasty shouts.
One other group, made up of three cultists and ten kobolds, patrolled the immediate surroundings carrying out a wide circle around the building.

In front of the back door six kobolds and two cultist: from the inner of the Church children screams and women weeping.

We hid ourselves in the woods not too distant to the building and, from that hiding place, we were able to kill all sentinels in front of the door, except one, who gave the alarm.

In the end we saved about twenty people just at the time when the main door collapsed under the brute force of our enemies: a couple of citizens remained behind, killed by kobolds’ fury.

“They can’t do this! THEY CANNOT DO THIS TO MY FAMILY!” Screams left my mouth, scratching my throat with rage.

When I tried to enter in the Church, Shill picked me up, dragging me away from there and I started crying.

I can’t clearly remember how we returned to the Fortress: my eyes were full of tears, the Shill’s hand pressed on my mouth shutting off my protests and my mind was still focused on the yells from the Church.

“I was right when I chose to entrust this mission to you. You rescued twenty eight people… I… I can’t tell you how happy I am. Thank you” said the Governor, then we were able to restore our bodies.

In the Fortress every single man was injured and tired but, at the crack of dawn, something happened: in front of the main gate gathered a crowd made by kobolds and cultists.

From this multitude of people an humanoid emerged: he was at least seven feet tall. His skin was completely covered in blue scales, fingers stretched in long claws and his face was elongated, similar to a reptile’s snout.

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Around him kobolds created a shield and pushed ahead four hostages: a woman, two children and a young boy with a tunic soiled with blood.

“Do you see these beggars? I can give back them to you under one condition: send here, in front of me, your best warrior and I’ll return you the hostages.” The humanoid’s voice, hoarse and heavy, scraped while he was talking.

After few moments Margut, the guard who helped us in the Church, cried out : “My sister! My sister is a prisoner of that monster!”

“I go.”

When I said this my companions observed me with dazed eyes.

“No. This is my duty. Tyr will lead my hand against those creatures. I must help the prisoners.” Shill interrupted me, moving forward toward the gate.

“I must help them, Greenest is my city, they’re my family.” I tried to declare, chasing the Paladin; after us Lei, Daeron and the blue man.

Why are we here, looking at Shill in front of that humanoid lizard?  He talks with arrogance, diminishing Shill abilities:

“Is this woman your hero?” The creature laughs. “Let’s see if you’re really a warrior.”

Shill doesn’t say anything: she looks at him with icy eyes, setting herself up for the attack.

Lei looks at me and, with feeble voice, says: “I’m ready to help Shill. One wave and I’ll attack him.”

I observe the two fighters and, beyond them, the poor prisoners and the kobolds. “If we attack they’ll kill the hostages. We have no choice except to stay here and await.”

The woman nods: “But I want to smash his scaly face.”

We stay here, watching  the fight between Shill and this dragon-man: the Paladin hits him a couple of times but, finally, he tears down his enormous sword on Shill, winning definitively.

The monstrous man makes a mocking laugh: “Release the prisoners. We’re done here.”

To be Continued…

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Tirvril – 03: Black-Thorn’d Roses

Dearest Mylindra,

I scratch this out with haste while I walk through Daggerfall, on my way to an inn called the Rosy Lion – I have begun the pursuit of Truth!

As I’m certain you remember, I had found that note with the list of three items upon it.  I chose to follow it in logical order, starting with the first item – Three Blood Oranges.  I left Roy’s body and headed for the Grocer in the Market Square, owned by a rather roguish man, hair tied back in a tight bun, clothing a bit tattered.  His name was Christoph Lamant, and he looked rather confused when I mentioned three blood oranges.  Once I explained how I came upon the note, he made explained that the dead man, who’s name is – was – Roy, was a King’s Intelligence Agent!

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Immediately I thought it to be another mention of Copper and her Ring of Dagger’s, but unfortunately this turned out to be a mention of King Casamir’s intelligence, the leader of Daggerfall, rather than King Emeric’s intelligence, High King of all of High Rock.  A lesser intelligence, but still an intelligence, eh?

Christoph also informed me that Roy – or perhaps the people Roy was spying upon, that part was unclear – may have been involved in Dark Magic.  Yes, I know what you are thinking and I am as well!  Molag Bal!  How is he involved in all of this??  I am beginning to suspect that our good Cleric Talborad may have struck upon something, though nothing yet proves the Chancellor’s involvement.

When I asked further questions about dark magic, Christoph refused to involve himself further and asked me to leave.  I moved on to the next item on the list: a Crescent Emblem Cloak – oh, how that description itself gave me shivers!  It is the perfect item to lead with in the article – make a note of that, for I am bound to forget.

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Where was I…ah yes, the cloak!  The tailor’s stall stands in the same market as the grocer, staffed by a hairy gentlemen in a lilac tunic, very pleasant and welcoming, named Kareem.  When I walked up to him he suggested I choose something in silk – though flattered, I asked outright for “a crescent emblem cloak.”

His eyes, Mylindra!  They revealed all I needed to know!  This man knew exactly what I was talking about.  He grew afraid, head swiveling, and leaned in closer.

“Where’s Roy?”

I explained what had happened, and Kareem seemed genuinely upset.  He asked after the dog, and I realized, with a touch of surprise, I had completely forgotten about the loyal hound.  I had no answer for him.

While I didn’t get an actual cloak, I received something even better – confirmation that I am dealing with the world of dark magic!  But after a cryptic statement about “information channels” that lit my mind afire with possibilities, Kareem closed his mouth and his shop.

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Next on the list – Black Roses with Thorns.  Off to the florist.  A lovely young woman named Diane, very astute and professional yet warm and friendly.  She wore a long green dress with an intricate design down the front in silver.

Her face, Mylindra, when I asked for black thorn roses…it paled, slacked a little, her eyes wide.

“You’ll get yourself killed.”  This she told me a little while later, after demanding to know why Roy was not in front of her and how I had learned the code word..  Yes, the code word!  Apparently Roy used these three traders to get word to the Captain of the guard and the King’s Intelligence about certain goings-on in the dark magic world – and “roses with black thorns” was one of the most dire of warnings!

“If I die in the pursuit of Truth, I die gladly,” I replied in what I thought to be a very gallant tone.  Diane just sighed.  I went on, “Roy and I are quite similar. We both believe certain information should be made available to certain people.  The only difference is that I believe “certain people” to be “everyone.”

To this Diane studied me for a moment, then said,

“Go see Captain Aresin.  He’s commander of the guard here in Daggerfall.”

See Mylindra?  I know you have little faith in the belief that the truth is always best and “will set you free” and other such clichés, but they are true!  I am more certain than ever that this is a story that will set the world alight – following the trail of information truly is exciting!

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The tranquil Western bridge. You can just make out the Castle to the right, those tall spires

I immediately set off for Castle Daggerfall, which soars above the city to the North.  To get to the staircase leading to the castle, you must cross a most tranquil and beautiful bridge.  It crosses a shallow river, and is on the opposite side of the city from where I discovered poor Roy’s body.

It began to rain as I crossed the bridge.  I pulled my cowl closer about my face, tucking my parchments inside my shirt.  Just as I had secured my pen in my pocket, a strange mist popped into existence directly in front of me, coalesced to a solid form, and stood up, all within a single moment!!

I reacted by dropping my mouth open and staggering back.  The man – for he was clearly a man now – yelled something I couldn’t understand or was too stunned to hear, and leapt at me.

From my right a short shape disengaged itself and intercepted the attacker – a Banekin!  From the Daedric realms!  Lighting flashed down from the sky, struck the man and nailed him to the cobblestone.  The Banekin skipped and skittered in their typical fashion, quite gleefully if I must be honest.

The man climbed to his feet, wicked dagger in hand.  He had cropped red hair, shaved on one side, and dark tattoos or paint covering his eyes.  I roused my strength and ran into the fray, beating at him with my fists.  I had no thought for my dagger – I must defeat this man immediately, as quickly as possible, before he can summon his strength and strike me!

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The valiant, unnamed hero who came to my aid! As well as my Banekin companion

I and the Banekin pummeled him, but he would not fall.  Just as my strength began to flag, a warrior appeared like Ysgrammor himself had come to my aid!  The gallant hero struck the attacker down with a single blow from his blood-stained axe and, with hardly a pause, continued down the bridge as though nothing had happened.  I called out my thanks to him, but he did not acknowledge me.  Breath heaving a bit more than I would have liked, I turned to the Banekin.  It looked up at me, grinned, and varnished.

I can only assume the Mages Guild has given me a Familiar of some sort to protect me in my travels – for which I am exceedingly grateful!  Without that Banekin I would certainly have died at the first blow from the assassin  – yes, assassin!  For that is what he must have been, sent to kill me for interceding in this matter—

But that is a thought for later.  I proceeded most cautiously to the foot of the castle steps, avoiding the shadows, where Captain Aresin waited.  He stood at the edge of the promontory, looking out over the Market Square.

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At first he tried to usher me away as yet another visitor, but when I explained that I had information from Roy and the exact nature of that information, the Captain immediately engaged me with the exclamation, “Mara’s Hands!” (a new use of the Goddess’ name that I have never heard before – could you enter it in my running list of phrases?  The list is in the top drawer of my desk, please make a new column titled “High Rock – Daggerfall”, thank you).

He made mention of “dark nature magic” – is this Daedric magic, or some other form of magic?  I had no time to ask any questions.  The Captain, as suits his position, is a brusque, serious person, shaved head, narrowed eyes, a gigantic Greatsword slung over his back like a weightless rucksack.  Quite a noble bearing as well, despite the lack of hair.

To summarize, the Captain requested that I assume Roy’s role.  Well, he may not have said those words exactly, but I can read between the syllables.  I am to gather more information for him from a contact at the Rosy Lion Innan Orc, no less!! – and who better to gather information than Tirvril Dathnim, Cyrodill’s most famous information distributor??

Oh, make a note of that name, “information distributor” – perhaps some amalgamation of those words for the future paper of news you had mentioned some months back!

My hand grows tired from writing so quickly – I will give this note to the Mages Guild as soon as I return from the Rosy Lion Inn.

Tirvril 

Tirvril – 02: Murder in the Markets

Mylindra!  The most astonishing events have occurred!  I can hardly hold my quill – it was so astoundingly astounding – wondrous – thrilling!

As I had mentioned in my last letter, I went out for air and a walk about town before bedding down for the night.   Even at the late hour, with dusk just enveloping the city, dozens – possibly hundreds – of people were about.  But unlike the Imperial city, so many had creatures in tow!  Gloriously winged things out of nightmares – although more likely a Daedric denizen, some poor evil soul bound to a Necromancer or some such nonsense – dogs, cats, bears, panthers, even Guar from my native homeland – and they must have cost a comely coin to import.

I made my way to the largest pack of adventurers – for that is how most were dressed, in the most outlandish colors, brandishing the most fiendish of weapons – elbowing my way through the crowd.  No one paid any attention; the Mage disguise worked perfectly.

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Just one of the many ornately ornamented citizens. This one must have some kind of Daedric-obsessed metalsmith.

I found myself inside the smithy, a room vast as Almalexia’s Hall yet I could hardly move, nor take a breath for the stench of sweat and scaled metal.  And can you believe not a single artisan sold me a dagger??  The metalsmith primly informed me the weapons he sells are much too complicated for a man of my inclinations (and I can only guess as to those inclinations) and refused me service.  Incredible.

Politely I requested the materials to build one myself – do not laugh – and was promptly informed he does not sell the materials.  At last he directed me to the Market Square, some ways to the East from the smithy.

400 gold coins.  400!!  For a flimsy dagger no thicker than my fingernail.  I can hardly cut a potato without fear of it breaking.  I shall have to perform a number of well-paid favors for Valaste if I am to survive out here.

The weaponsmith who sold me - no, swindled me out of 400 coins
The weaponsmith who sold me – no, swindled me out of 400 coins

Dagger tucked firmly in my belt, I began to retrace my steps back to the Mages Hall.  I had just passed the Southern entrance when a large, honey colored dog ran up to me and planted itself firmly in my path, barking and trying to tug on my tunic!  You would have instantly noticed its intelligence, my dear Mylindra.  This was no dumb mutt, and it clearly had a purpose.  It went a little ways ahead on the path and then turned around, as though waiting for me.   Of course I followed…

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So unassuming, yet brilliant…

A body, Mylindra!  A dead one!

The dog led me to a dead man lying on a small patch of muddy grass in the middle of a pond next to a bridge.  He was face down, splayed out as though knocked on the back of the head.

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Next to him lay a soggy note, the ink nearly bled clean through but still legible.   It read:

Grocer – Three Blood Oranges

Tailor – Crescent Emblem Cloak

Florist – Black Roses with Thorns

Can you believe the luck, Mylindra?  Not for the poor dead man of course, but already a Title story!

And yes, before you knit your eyebrows together, I did try to inform the guards.  But none would believe me!  I assume it was because I am a Dunmer.  The woman I spoke to, a green-skinned Orc with an axe to grind (don’t you miss my puns?), was cold and aloof and wrote things down in her notebook without actually looking at it.  I am certain she was drawing circles.  I could tell she did not trust me, and at one she point mentioned that Mages were a “crafty lot” and I might have murdered him myself.

At that point Mylindra, I realized I, as an outsider, Faction enemy and stranger, would most likely be framed for this man’s murder – so I have no choice but to pursue Truth and Justice on my own.

It is too dark to begin the search now, most of the market stalls will be closed.  Though it is bright as dawn here in my room, they have the most marvelous Mage Lights all about this Hall.  Candles and torches seem almost archaic in this place of high magic.  You would love the lights, Mylindra.

Ah, I cannot sleep!  I can see the words now: MURDER IN DAGGERFALL.  No, that’s too obvious.  A BUSHEL OF DAGGERS.  GROCER, TAILOR, FLORST, MURDERER.  No…

Use your talent for titles, Mylindra – this story deserves it, I can feel it!

Your Loving Friend,

Tirvril

Anankis Miri from Tyranny of Dragons – 01: The Approach

From the Chronicles of Anankis Miri

By Mishkamist of Entire Party Killed

I just barely escaped from the destruction of Greenest. I know many of my countrymen died, slaughtered by hordes of kobolds, lead by mysterious humans with blue and purple-red dresses, or killed by the fury of a blue dragon that spreads death and destruction on the village.

Even now I can’t explain to myself how I was able to run away: the only thing I know is that there are other people, like me, who want to save the citizens and clear Greenest from this plague that is afflicting their beloved city.

I was running towards the city center looking for guards, when I bumped into two beautiful women: the tallest one was looking at me with hatred, piercing me with her icy eyes but I’m sure I had never saw her before.  Suddenly a group of people ran through the city’s streets, hunted by a group of eight kobolds.

I recognized them immediately.

Kuth, Linan and their three children were running from those evil creatures, wielding makeshift weapons: the entire family was straining to drive away the kobolds but they did not succeed. I ran to them, but wasn’t fast enough to prevent the attack the monsters were launching against them.

One by one they fell to the ground before my eyes: Kuth, his wife and one of their children merely fainted, whereas the other two brothers were knocked to the ground, their heads smashed to pieces by the kobold’s slingshot hits.

In front of me, even before I could recover from the shock, the tall woman, invoking Tyr’s blessing, pierced one of the kobolds with her shining sword and then started to parry the attacks of two other monsters; at the same time the other woman, the most beautiful one, killed two enemies with an enormous fire column.

All of a sudden, from an alley on our right, a man appeared, launching a spell against the creatures: his help was essential during the fight.

As always the voice into my mind incited me to kill, to dismember my enemies: I tried fervently to endure it but, in the end, my diabolic blood gained the upper hand and my mind was flooded by a vengeance desire.

I killed one or two kobolds, I cannot clearly remember: I felt screams and a lot of blood around me and on my skin…. My skin changed like always when my mind is blown by rage: countless burns cover the surface of my entire body and shiny signs appears over them.

In the end we defeated those revolting creatures.

“Miri! Thanks God… We must reach the Fortress! There the guards are gathering the survivors, to protect them. We must go there!” Linan’s voice trembled, broke in sorrow.
During the walk to reach the Fortress we ran up against other kobolds and men dressed in blue: we were able to save two other peasants killing our enemies.

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The others who were with me introduced themselves: the tall woman, Shill Dhalled, is a Tyr Paladin. She scares me a lot: she’s always looking at me with furious eyes, like I made something horrible: I know my tiefling nature isn’t accepted by a lot of people but I’m a good girl, I have never hurt anyone and in Greenest everyone loves me. I’m afraid by Shill’s manners.

She asked me: “Who is your God?” and I wasn’t able to answer her properly.
Sincerely I don’t understand clearly what she means talking about ‘God’. A fat, bald man, sitting on a cloud, traveling over our heads? Or a bearded old man who observes all the beings alive to judge them?

Shill’s question upset me a lot: maybe I can ask for answers to the other woman, Lei Windriver, she’s a cleric of Sune and so very beautiful!  Lei’s hair is like molten silver and her eyes shine like glittering gold. I envy her a lot.

I can ask Lei some advice about Gods, maybe about her Goddess, but I’m not sure she’ll accept ‘cause she looks at me with mistrust.

But… Where were we?

Daeron Ossa is the mage and, different from the two women, is really kind with me: he has polite manners and a quiet voice. He asked me if I need a cure for my burns… I really like him! And, sincerely, I saw him casting one or two spells I’m acquainted with so, maybe, he can understand me better than the others.

In the Fortress, Escobert, the dwarf captain of the guards and right-hand man to the governor, thanked us for our help and said the governor wanted to talk us; he lead our group, after a short explanation, to Tarbaw Nightfall, the governor.

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Tarbaw is a 60 years old man with a well-cared beard: now his face is partially covered in bandages and his right harm is bandaged too.

“I must thank you. I observed you from the walls and I must ask you a great favor: Greenest needs all the help it can get and now, here, I’m requesting you to save more people as possible.”

With me he didn’t have to exert a lot of pressure: I would give my life for Greenest and its inhabitants.

After we all agreed, he took us to the parapet on the walls: here we saw a dozen of armed guards, dressed in blue, and, in the center of them, a woman with a purple-red dress. The governor asked us to capture some of those men for interrogation.

Through a secret tunnel we started to leave the Fortress but we were attacked by two swarms of rats: with a little effort finally we killed those beasts and left the tunnel, near a little river. Right away two men, each one followed by two kobolds, were scouring the river with long rods: we killed all the kobolds and captured those men, bringing them, knocked out, in the tunnel.

Now, our expedition can proceed.

CONTINUE THE ADVENTURE HERE

Dar’Raksadarg – 03: Warning: Road Signs may be Incorrect

While I studied the road sign to decide which direction I needed to go, someone ran up to me and gave me a gift! Us sneaky types stay together, so we can always spot a fellow thief.

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The fugitive tossed me something then grabbed my shoulder, yanking me toward him. “Hold onto to this, I’ll be back for it later.”

“Ummm…” I tried to wiggle out from his strong grip before I passed out from the pain.

“Double-cross me and you’ll regret it. I mean it!” He growled back while looking over his shoulder. With that warning delivered, the blood in my shoulder began to circulate when he removed his hand.

“Ah yes, you wish me to follow you and carry your burdens while you lead?”

The fugitive leaned in close, “If I wanted someone to follow me, I would pick a powerful mage.” With one last glance over his shoulder, he was gone crying about how death was highly overrated.

It is true that Skyrim has individuals who are mad and clearly that man was one of them.

I remembered seeing the stables outside of Markarth – perhaps stealing a horse would be better than walking, since I certainly can’t buy one yet. At least that way I can avoid all the nutty people along the way until I reach the greatest nut of them all – my cousin J’zargo.

I decided to head toward Whiterun since Markarth had proven to be a very dangerous city and I couldn’t pronounce Karthwasten. That place sounded more like a distress signal from someone named Karth who was wasting away. What kind of a cat am I for not wanting to answer the call for help? One smart cat with top-notch senses. My instincts said that place was a trap and probably just some guy pretending to be hurt. No way am I falling for that trap! Whiterun, here I come.

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I headed over the bridge in the direction of Whiterun since I’m no chicken and no road in Skyrim can bring me down. I don’t need a horse. My Pa always said, “If they hear you coming, cut those claws!”

I miss him. That bellowing laughter of his shook our den along with his endless ideas of how to best his brother. Good thing my Ma is quiet because the den would surely collapse if she was anything like my Pa. She was proud of me and upset that I was being forced to leave the den. Just bet my Pa got an ear-full after I was tossed out the door in a drunken state…or did they take and dump me somewhere? Minor detail at this point. I’m here, safe and sound but I can’t guarantee I’ll be of sound mind after leaving here.

Aha! I know that sound. The nirnroot. I hate them.

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Stealth training class for cubs was required learning and nirnroots were the targets. We practiced sneaking up on those noisy plants to pluck them from the ground before the sound could trigger the defense mechanism. No better way to perk up the sneak ability than a nirnroot. It is always necessary to take along a partner until your skill has improved otherwise the plant will grab and wrap its leaves around you. Rest in peace all you little cubs who failed to follow the basic rules of nirnroot hunting. But me, I’m the greatest nirnroot snatcher of all and this one shall be mine! No one bests a Khajiit when it comes to being quiet while stalking its prey.

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With that plant silenced and in my pocket as I knew it would be, I quickly discovered something odd about the birds in Skyrim. They lack knowledge of how to build their nests in trees. I know this is wrong because I could always out-climb J’zargo when it came to trees, and nests were found among the branches.

Wait! There is only one egg in it! I believe I know the answer! Yes, my instincts are working overtime and this egg is a reject! Something is wrong with it. The feathered parents know this little yolk isn’t developing right so they left it for anyone to take. And die from using it?! That’s madness! I’m not touching it. Tricks are for kids and I’m not falling for that!

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Another nest? Already? What is happening to the birds here in Skyrim? Are the skies being sprayed with some magic from the College of Winterhold? My whiskers are twitching and my gut says J’zargo is behind this. Still mad after all these years for being left on the ground as I scrambled up the bark with ease. Can’t believe he is taking out his anger on the birds. I’m coming for you, cousin and perhaps I’ll crack a few eggs over your head while hidden among the trees. Sure hope they have trees at the college that J’zargo hasn’t destroyed yet.

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There is one thing about Skyrim I have noticed – it’s empty on the roads. I am sneaking my way down the road for several reasons:

  1. It is safe.
  2. It is good to work on my skills.

The perks of stealth allow me to sense quickly who might be able to detect me. I know the teacher always said, “If you are detected, they saw you” but this is a false teaching. My ability is so fine-tuned that I will know who can detect me versus being detected. I even know when it is safe to come out of the shadows; only the professional sneaks have this ability. This is good information, as it tells me I am still on the right track for Whiterun.

There are rumors that the road signs of Skyrim are wrong, some listing the wrong place, others pointing the wrong direction and some spots void of the sign posts altogether. My Pa told me about King Arthmoor who unofficially ordered all the road signs to be redone and point the way correctly. I’m impressed because they sure look nice, but do hope they are correct. Not that I doubt the King’s orders but if he used Khajiits, we are known to take naps quite often.

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What is this? Someone is nearby. I can detect them! My nose is sniffing them out. Mudcrab in the distance that is moving around. I’m just that good, that I knew miles away that a mudcrab was there. It will never see me coming because I’m not crossing that water. I hate water. It’s bad for my fur and ruins the shine of my coat. Oh I know how some enchanters say it will radiate with shine, but I’ll just keep myself clean the old-fashion way. Best to just keep going, then next time I’m on that side of the water that mudcrab is mine! Steamed crab legs….well, perhaps I could handle a little water for some crab legs.

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I was wrong? It wasn’t a mudcrab? Why you pesky nirnroot! I see you now. Like hiding by the bridges, do you? There is plenty of room in my pockets for more of you.

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Where is everyone? No traveling merchants. No adventurers. No bandits. Nothing on the road but me and a pocket filled with nirnroots. I always thought there was a wolf problem in Skyrim. Always heard tales about how the roads were filled with them. I haven’t seen a single wolf yet but I am a caravan guard so perhaps they are hiding from me. I am a force to be reckoned with, my claws are sharp, my roar is ferocious and I’m far more powerful than some wimpy mage. If my Pa says I’m the Dragonborn then I’m the Dragonborn. How can I argue with that? Besides I can’t argue with my Pa, he frowns on that. One thing is for certain: my sense of direction is spot on and hopefully this road sign is as well.

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Interesting. Riften is listed. Home of the Thieves Guild. All Khajiits learn which cities throughout Tamriel are dens for the thieves. It’s a natural instinct for us to take what we want quietly without being noticed. I believe we can’t just go around helping ourselves to the goods; one must learn to pick and choose. After picking my Pa’s pocket one day and getting caught, I chose to be more selective. I plan to pick J’zargo clean then see if his magic skills can find where I hid them all.

Solitude is the capital of Skyrim. Isn’t that an odd name for the main city? Doesn’t make you want to run there and tour the city. Of course, Karthwasten’s message isn’t making me run that direction either but you would think if someone could bother putting up all these signs about Karth wasting away they would have helped him instead. Best to stay on track for Whiterun. Somewhere along the road Winterhold has to come up. Wish my Ma had packed my compass even if it was broken, because I have no idea which way is north. My plan is to stay on the road until I reach Whiterun then ask for directions to Winterhold. I always plan ahead.  If you don’t and are taken by surprise, the results might not be the best, so careful planning is always key.

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I sense the daylight dimming as the sky is losing its brilliant blue, making my travel slower. Those ruins in the distance are inviting, but I’m not equipped to go exploring in any ruin or cave. My gear is junk, the bow is old with little arrows and two steel daggers make close battle a bit too deadly for me. I’m coming back though, after I get Lajjan to come with me. Maybe I’ll marry her. Ha! What a weak heart I am but it’s true, I love the ladies. Nothing like having the ladies stroke my face with their tail as they tickle my chin with one beautifully painted claw…

Back to business, and off to Whiterun with Lajjan in my heart.

 

Vipsania – 03: Alchemy is a Killer

Later that day I wandered, still shoe-less, into the Woodworking and Alchemy building.  Lots of noise, saws and toxic smells.

I tried my hand at picking the lock of a small chest on one of the tables, but the alchemist walked by just as I was getting the hang of it and confiscated my lockpick.

She needs to take a chill potion.
Super Bitch.  Sutch, if you will.

I seriously suck at this thieving business. 

So I settled for snatching a bird call whistle from a basket.  It’s made of silver and very shiny, so probably expensive – score!


 

 Sadly, Miss Vipsania passed away shortly after writing this.  As she mentions above, she had stolen a number of items and was caught by Alchemist Justal trying to open the lockbox.  The Guards received word of this and, when Miss Vipsania was later pointed out to them by Miss Justal, a Guard pursued. 

Miss Vipsania, willing to return all the stolen items but unable to pay the 7 coin bounty nor possessing the muscle mass to intimidate the Guard, was forced to flee into the woods outside the city.  She appeared to be making for the river, perhaps in hopes of swimming to safety. 

The Guard, however, used a gap spell, pulled Miss Vipsania close and stabbed her through the back (forgive the gruesome description, I wish to be thorough). 

The noble, duty-bound Guard who caught Miss Vipsania.  She is to receive the Medal of Valor for her staunch commitment to enforcement.
The noble, duty-bound Guard who caught Miss Vipsania. She is to receive the Medal of Valor for her staunch commitment to enforcement.

Miss Vipsania, known by name only through these papers discovered on her person and without any kin claiming her, was entombed in the Unknown Crypt beneath the Daggerfall Cathedral at dawn this morning.  Her personal papers, along with this note, will be buried alongside her should in future anyone come to claim her body.

Priest Farher

Vipsania – 02: Still no Shoes

Still No Shoes

I stepped outside as the sun rose high and bright above the pointy spires of Daggerfall.  A woman, Roulena, raked the grass outside.  She watched me step out of the house and didn’t bat an eye other than to comment about her workload, so I played it cool and acted like I always stepped out of that house without shoes, half of me ready for battle and the other half ready for bed.

You can just make out Mihayya in the background.
You can just make out Mihayya in the background.

I asked Roulena where the stores were, and she directed me to the Tradesmen’s Square nearby.  But before I could go ten paces, a woman named Mihayya stopped me.  She leaned nonchalantly against a post, flipping a coin.

Turns out Coldharbor had actually dumped me into the sea!  Some Captain, who’s name starts with a C or a K, had found me floating (hopefully upright) in the water offshore and brought me to Daggerfall.  Mihayya suggested I join up with the Captain’s crew, as she’s shorthanded.  I said I would, but that’s a lie.  I’m not a huge sea-goer.  I like me boots on the ground, thank you very much.  Maybe if I happen to pass by the docks later I’ll tell someone to pass along a thank you.

I continued on to the market.  But first, I decided to try out my lockpicking skills on a house next to the one in which I had woken—

–and broke my one and only lockpick.  Really Vipsania??

Really.

I had found the perfect angle, hunched down by the door while the Pact Guard was turned the other way, and then proceeded to break it after five tries.  This is why I need to join the Thieves Guild.

Left without a single lockpick or coin to my name, I went uneventfully to the market.  Though I did laugh when I passed by the bank.

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As a group, they don’t smell so great.

Any thought of stealing my shoes or coin from the market went out of my head the moment I stepped inside.  Full to the brim with all manner of people and races and creatures, it hummed with life.  And prying eyes.  I pretended to browse a few of the books scattered around about crafting of various sorts, eyeing the occasional pack and trunk in the corner, but none offered a suitably discreet spot.  I briefly considered grabbing a pair of boots sitting to the side of the anvil, but the thought of a Guard sword through the back stopped me.  In fact, the only item I could steal was out back in a sack and called saltrice – some kind of cooking ingredient, from the looks of it – but what am I supposed to do with that?  I have no idea how to cook anything.

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I wandered back to the small, crowded square with its pleasant fountain and hordes of people and leaned against the stone wall, watching the antics in front of me.  People leaping from the fountain, falling down, sprinting past, teleporting in and out, riding camels, casting spells, praying—

–the church!  Always open, always quiet, always filled with some kind of rich goody or another.  And there it was, directly across the square.

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Why do Gods need the best houses, when they don’t even live here??

It was a Cathedral with a shrine to Mara – no surprise, in Daggerfall – and the priest outside ironically advised me to “Find what I seek” inside.  A rather fierce sermon was in progress when I entered, so no one felt like chatting when I sidled up to them.  Or maybe it was because I needed a shower.  I quickly made for the dark corners and rummaged through barrels and crates.

I made out with some greens and ginger for food (hardly worth mentioning), a two tined carving fork (worth a bit of coin) and – best of all – a lock pick!  Worth listening to the preacher drone on about Kynareth and Zenithar for that.

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Someone had clearly been here before me.

I left the church and turned left, towards a bridge.  At the edge of it was a beggar, who kept shouting about “being next”.  Now, I like to keep my head down, but I also like a bit of adventure – no, a heaping dish of adventure.  So I humored him, asked him what was up.  He told me to head into the trade district and ask around about murdered beggars.  I’ve also been in his shoes – or bare feet, as it were – begging on the streets, so I might have made a few more promises than I should have.  Since I didn’t have any coin, I gave him the food I had found in the Church.  If my wanderings took me to the trade district and the right people, I’d ask around for him.

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And then do you know what happened right then?  Someone tried to pick-pocket the Guard on the bridge!  Rolled right up to the Guard’s back, all cloaked in darkness, visible just at the edges if you looked at the right angles, and pounced.

But not fast enough.

The Guard whirled around, the man fled – the Guard struck him in the back and the thief fell.  Then he scrambled up, climbed up on to the side of the bride and leapt off!  As though it were three feet high!  I ran to the side and leaned over.  The thief ran up out of the water and around the back side of the Cathedral, drawing the shadows around him again.  The Guard pursued the entire way, until I couldn’t see them anymore no matter how far over I leaned.

Looking over the bridge.
Looking over the bridge, thief long gone.

I tell you, Daggerfall is an exciting place.  Perhaps it is a better choice than Riften after all.

 

THE ADVENTURE CONTINUES…