Dragon Attack kills horse. Grr

So I have a manor in Falkreath and I read a book recently on a legend about a famous mage being murdered, something about his three sons, and the whole thing being stricken from the records of history, yet the legend remains. I decided to use my horse since it would be a bit faster for me to get from the south all the way up tot he ruins mentioned near Solitude.

So about one minute after I hit the road, riding along on my horse, did something large go WHOOSH right over my head. Oh bother, I think to myself, another dragon… well, when it comes to dragon bones, scales, and souls, enough is never enough. So I dismount and shoot an arrow at the dragon.

He breathes fire at my horse and kills it.

Now I’m really pissed off. I mean sure, with my perk points in speech, I can sell dragon bones for almost 1500 gold pieces, but still, MY HORSE!!! YOU KILLED MY HORSE! TALOS DAMN YOU!

Then he flies back to my manor and kills my chickens. Thankfully my highland cow made a run for it while my steward tries to go blade to tooth with the dragon while I sprint back to the manor. All the way back I’m yelling, “OH NO! NO! THAT IS NOT WHERE YOU GO FOR BREAKFAST! DON’T – YOU – DARE!!!

So yeah, I get there and all three chickens are dead, I don’t see the cow, and at this point I’m thinking it either ran away safely, or the dragon ate it. Thinking of the latter, I’m thinking, DAMN IT! TALOS TAKE YOU AND ROAST YOU ALIIIIIIIVE!!! I shout my frost breath shout at it, but it’s only two words instead of three.

Then he lifts off and goes hunting some wolves, forcing me to run over grass and rocks and fallen tree trunks after it. I’m shooting arrows at it like a machine gun (or like those automatic crossbows from Shrek 2) at this point, and Inigo finally gets to confront the dragon on the ground with his Blades Sword and Ebony Blade. Maybe I should have given him the one enchanted to do more damage to dragons… oh well. We managed to down it in the end, and upon closer inspection, I realize it was an ancient dragon, far more powerful than the whelps I’ve fought before. No wonder he was smart enough to avoid me and kill everything else.

Damn dragon killed my horse and chickens.  So I kill him and take his soul... eye for an eye I guess.

Damn dragon killed my horse and chickens. So I kill him and take his soul… eye for an eye I guess.

I head back to the manor, overlook my dead chickens, recall my dead horse by the damn lake, and see my long haired cow mosey on back into his pen. Yeah, don’t need a cow herder to do that, haha. Smart animal that one… as for the chickens, well, no wonder I’ve called them “bird-brain”.

After I catch my breath and store the dragon bones and scales inside, I head back out to check on my steward and ask her to buy me another horse and some more chickens. Maybe next time I go for a ride, and giant freak lizard won’t dive bomb me and cook my horse. >.< FML.

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A Conjurer in Skyrim Part 2: Windhelm and High Hrothgar

Rynn the ConjurerI haven’t played as a conjurer in a while, so I thought I’d dust off this old save file and summon a flame atronach and conjure a sword and go adventuring. I went up to Windhelm to visit for a bit. I get a quest to collect Queen Freydis’s Sword from a spider lair, and then go into the Forsaken Cave to find something called The White Phial. Considering that the White Phial is for an alchemist, I’m sure it’s not something to help with fingernails. Phial, not file. Anyway I go, I get them, I get back. While the blacksmith rewarded me with an increase in my smithing skill, the alchemist gave me a scant 5 gold. Now I can imagine that the sword must be covered in rust and spider webs, but the blacksmith was more rewarding than the alchemist. True, the phial was cracked, but he’s spent his whole life looking for that artifact, and he only gives me five gold. I tell off his assistant, who pays me 500 gold for the bother. THAT’S BETTER! Humph!

Hey, the greybeards are summoners too! How 'bout that!

Hey, the greybeards are summoners too! How ’bout that!

Then I head on south to the foot of High Hrothgar and climb the seven thousand steps. All this time I’ve have Lydia with me, and by now I’ve given her a dwarven shield I found (I think I found that when I was killing spiders while looking for the queen’s sword), and I’ve gotten some robes of conjuration.

There’s something weird about all this. Whenever I start a new game, I pick something like archery, or destruction, or conjuration, and level up those skills as best as possible, but when it comes down to it, I don’t get any gear to drop in chests of off monsters that give me bonuses in that area, like destruction spells cost 12% less magicka to cast, or deal more damage with bows and arrows, that sort of thing. NO! It’s always the things I don’t use, like two handed weapon bonus, or alteration robes, or heavy armor. I usually have to save up enough gold to buy the items I do want if I’m lucky enough to come across them. And then guess what happens? The next thing I kill or the next chest I loot has an item I’ve been looking for. Like say I just bought a leather helmet that does 10% more damage in archery, then a few minutes later I’m in a cave, I unlock a chest, and lo-and-behold, there’s an elven helmet that deals 15% more damage in archery… and then I’m like, Why didn’t you appear in the last chest I opened?!

Calcelmo runs into the White Phial Store when I try to kill him before he kills someone else. I backstab him with my conjured sword. Sorry about the mess, mister cheepskate alchemist!

Calcelmo runs into the White Phial Store when I try to kill him before he kills someone else. I backstab him with my conjured sword. Sorry about the mess, mister cheepskate alchemist!

Anyway, I’ve managed to get a few things, set my skills up so when I kill something with my sword then it fills a soul gem, if I have any empty ones anyway. In this way I can level up my enchanting as well. And considering that I’m conjuring a sword and using that all the time, I put a couple of perks into the one-handed tree and one in the light armor tree (I’m wearing vampire boots I enchanted to resist fire and some leather bracers to increase my magicka).

Up on High Hrothgar, I learn the second word for Unrelenting Force and the first word for Whirlwind Sprint. Now I get to go all the way back down the mountain and tell Klimmick that a climb this trip had been. Of course, I decide to avoid mentioning my training with the Greybeards, since they live in seclusion after all and I assume there is a reason three of the four are pretty silent most of the time. Master Arngeir is the only one who’s tongue isn’t tied.

Then I head back down the mountain and tell Klimmek that I delivered his supplies to the Greybeards, and shortly after that, two weirdos in orangy robes ask if I’m the dragonborn. Uh oh.

Whatever you're selling, I don't want it!

Whatever you’re selling, I don’t want it!

I try to deny it, after all I’m only just now learning how to use the voice thanks to the Greybeards, but they call my bluff, saying something about Miraak and how he’s the true dragonborn and that all imposters will be killed or something to that effect, and they attack me. I summon my flame atronach and my sword and defend myself, Lydia starts shooting arrows, and the town guard of ivarstead rushes in to help kick some arse. Once the cultists are dead I check their pockets and find a note. Seems they came from an island called Solstheim and that one Miraak sent them. Huh. Well I’m not in the mood to get sea sick and hunt down other dragonborns, if any. Instead, I pocket the letter and leave.

Time to head out.

Meet Sapsorrow

The Legendary Dragon

The Legendary Dragon

Amaki’dar has reached level 78 at last, and managed to find and kill a legendary dragon, thus getting an achievement on Steam. That makes the last achievement she can get until I decide to buy the Dragonborn expansion. Till then I’ve pretty much done everything there is to do in the game. So I decided to start a new game as a Dunmer mage specializing in destruction magic. Dear readers, meet Sapsorrow!

I'm unbound and about to burn my foes to cinders!

I’m unbound and about to burn my foes to cinders!

During my escape from Helgen I chose to side with the Stormcloaks as usual. I ignore the advice that Ralof gives me about giving the axe a few swings, but I do take his gear. I’ll need armor after all. I equip a fire spell in one hand and a shock spell in the other, and once we get into the torture chamber I obtain a wizard hood and robe, which I don for magics sake. While I’m in there, I take the opportunity to pick all the locks on the cages and dungeon cells. Yep. My inner thief is peeking out. Next thing I know I’ll be heading to Riften instead of Whiterun first thing upon escaping Helgen. Sure enough I escape the dragon attack and my own execution at Helgen, and now I have the freedom to do as I see fit in Skyrim. Maybe I will become a thief int he long run, but in the meantime, I follow Ralof towards Riverwood and pick some plants along the way. I’m planning ahead, wanting to make some magicka potions when I reach town so I’ll have some on hand.

Once in Riverwood I meet Faendal, a wood elf who’s vying for affection from Camilla. Problem is he has competition. A bard named Sven is after her too, so Faendal has an idea. He gives me a letter to give to Camilla and say that it’s from Sven. When I do so, Camilla tells me to tell Sven that she’s not seeing him anymore. I tell Feandal that Camilla won’t be spending much time with Sven anymore, and he gives me 25 gold, the money he’s earned from working at the lumber mill. Sweet. Not only that but I can now ask him to follow me. A free sellsword. Nice.

Yeah, I help him cozy up to another woman, and then I ask him to come with me on many adventures. No logical, just evil. :P

Yeah, I help him cozy up to another woman, and then I ask him to come with me on many adventures. No logic, just evil. 😛

While visiting the Riverwood Trader, Lucan happens to have a few things for sale that I’d like to have. Novice Robes of Destruction for example, and a Circlet of Minor Illusion. If only I had 3856 Septims! Sadly I only have 299, after buying spell tomes for Frostbite and Fury. Swell. Lucan did suffer from a break in recently though, and he promises me some gold if I get his golden dragon claw back. Hmm!

First I head into Embershard Mine, kill all the bandits and take what I can. Back in Riverwood I sell it all and found that I make about 1100 gold in the process. Sweet. Now I’m up to 1305 gold, but it’s still too little to buy either of the items I want from Lucan. Rats! Well, C’mon Feandal, let’s go to Bleakfalls Barrow and get this over with! We go through the ruins, get the claw, I find a stone tablet and some nifty things to disenchant later, and return to Riverwood. Now I have enough gold for the robes of Destruction. Sweet! I leave and go into South Brittleshin Pass to kill a bunch of skeletons and a mage, and then use the enchanting table to disenchant the various items I found so far.

Let's see whats behind door number one!

Let’s see whats behind door number one!

Upon reflection, the way enchanting works in Skyrim is very different from World of Warcraft in many ways except one: when you disenchant an item, you destroy the item. Now in World of Warcraft, you learn enchantments from trainers, vendors, and from random formulas that you might find from monsters all over Azeroth. You disenchant magical items (armor or weapons) to get materials you need to create new enchantments that can be placed on armor or weapons, and you can either enchant your own items that you are already using or put them on enchanting velum to save them for later or store them in the guild bank so others can use them.

In Skyrim on the other hand, you learn the enchantments by disenchanting armor and weapons, and you only have to do this once per enchantment. Then in order to enchant an item, you need the item in question, a learned enchantment, and a filled soul gem. Soul gems are usually empty, so either you use a weapon that has a soul trap enchantment on it, or you cast the spell Soul Trap on an enemy. Either way, when you use Soul Trap on an enemy and kill it in time, then their soul gets trapped in the soul gem, and then you can use it to create new enchantments or recharge enchanted weapons. Very different ways of enchanting, eh? I think I prefer World of Warcraft’s version, in the sense that you don’t have to kill and use the souls of living things to power enchantments. Skyrim’s version is a little darker, but then again it is simpler than WoW’s. In WoW, there are a lot of different enchanting materials, some of which are hard to come by and more expensive to obtain.

To the batmobile Robin! Wait... wrong batcave!

To the batmobile Robin! Wait… wrong batcave!

So when I was finished disenchanting some items and learning new enchantments in the process, I leave the caves through the northern exit. Faendal says, “Hey, look! A cave! Wonder what’s inside!” I glare at him and say, “You block-head! We just came from there!” I wonder if he’s on Skooma. We head east towards Whiterun and help the Companions kill a giant and offer me membership. Not sure if I’ll join right now. After all I am a spell caster, not a warrior. Then on inspiration, I head on east even further and go into another cave, this one being a bandit lair called White River Watch.

First thing I know is that I’m being greeted by a blind bandit who mistakes me for someone else and tells me that the boss is waiting up at the summit, and that I better not keep him waiting. Ah. Thanks for the heads up there, human! I then cook him in his own armor and proceed. Next are some bandits plotting a mutiny. I cast Fury on one of them and he gets killed in the ruckus, then Faendal and I kill the others. Then we overhear some bandits talking over a captured wolf, trying to decide whether or not they can tame it. I find a chain on the wall and pull it. The cage door opens and the wolf attacks the bandits. In the end we kill all the bandits, including their leader, and then head back down to Whiterun.

I steal some Argonian Ale for a beggar, discuss how we might repair the tree in the center of Whiterun, and then check in at the tavern for the local gossip before getting some rest. I learn of a face sculptor in Riften, the Shrine of Azura, the Companions are hiring, and that the Jarl put out a bounty on some bandits in Halted Stream Camp. The next morning it’s raining, and I go talk to Ysolda and Amren, and now I get to find a mammoth tusk and a Family Sword. Yep. I like to be kept busy!2013-07-07_00012

So now I got tell the Jarl of Whiterun about the dragon attack on Helgen, and then we visit with the court wizard named Farengar, whom I tell, “Look out! You’re about to step on your own Shock Rune!” He says, “What, I never even cast a… ah I see. You have some knowledge of the higher art,” and then he starts to tell me about his research and asks me to go get a dragonstone from Bleakfalls Barrow. But I’ve already been there so I already have the stone.

Next is when I go out and slay a dragon. At level 6? Good thing I have reinforcements! Ireleth and the guards come with me, but Faendal is nowhere in sight. Where is that wood elf of mine? By now I have a few perks invested in the Destruction tree and I tookt he precaution of buying some new spells from Farengar, namely Firebolt and Ice Spike. When the dragon attacks, sure enough he’s a fire breather, so I attack with Ice Spikes. After a nice little battle, the dragon dies and I take his soul and shout, “FUS!”

When I head back to Whiterun, a courier comes to me with a letter from a friend. Turns out some folks were uneasy by my shouting at the Western Watchtower. It seems to me that unless my voice carried that far, the only folks who heard the shout was Ireleth and the guards who were with us. So if they were the ones who knew about my shouting, why is it that they’re over there and the courier is coming from the city? I shrug my shoulders and accept the delivery. This guy oughta work for FedUp. I read the letter, turns out I can learn a word of power at Northwind Summit, which is somewhere between Riften and Windhelm. Joy. Rapture.

I get back to the palace and tell the Jarl that the dragon is dead and I am Dragonborn. And oh look, it’s Faendal! WHERE THE HELL HAVE YOU BEEN!? I give you a hide helmet of minor archery and you hide in the map room while I go kill a bloody dragon? BAD WOOD ELF! Gimme that helmet back! DISENCHANT!

Now it’s time to go everywhere and do everything. ^-^

Harmugstahl

Glory to the Companions!

Glory to the Companions!

Khajiit welcomes you, friend. Today I slid down a mountain and realized I was more in The Reach rather than Haafingar. Proof you ask? How about a tent that seems to be made of animal skins and twigs? Add that to the two Forsworn guarding this path that they have set up with bear traps? Well I loot the items in their tent as they won’t be needing them anymore, then slit their throats. I just barely manage to kill the second one as quietly. The sun has risen, and I can no longer rely on the shadows.

Then as I walk through the bear-trapped path, a polar bear comes charging out from around a rock. I ready my daggers once more, and slice at the beast a few times… as it runs past me! I turn around, and blink in surprise. Farkas, Ria, and Athis come running up and start attacking the bear. Aha. The Companions must have been after this bear. Considering the fact that the reach is mountainous and slightly green, this bear kinda stood out. Maybe Farkas and the others have been after this one for miles… I help slay the bear. After all, I am Harbinger of the Companions now. Might as well lend some steel… or glass actually, my daggers are made of glass.

Somebody's home...

Somebody’s home…

After the bear is dead we part ways, but those three sort of sparked my desire to hunt for a bit. I kill two each of some sabercats, goats, and wolves in that order. Then I spy a mountain that has a sort of mist, or smoke wafting from it. I go to investigate. I find the remains of a tower and some dead bodies that looked as if they were burnt to death. I hear something move and look to my right. Yep. Dragon. Shoulda known. The dragon flies up and then lands… I guess just to prove that it can, the big scaly show-off. Then he breathes frost at me. I slash up his snout and then he dies. Death by nosebleeding for the win! Then I spot the word wall and learn the last word I needed to know for the Elemental Fury shout.

The area has burnt bodies strewn about, and they were killed by a frost dragon? Yeah right...

The area has burnt bodies strewn about, and they were killed by a frost dragon? Yeah right…

As I’m leaving I pass the dead bodies again and I pause. Wait a second… if that dragon was a frost breather, how the heck did these guys die? I look around. No signs of any fire-breathing dragons. I shrug and make my way back down the path. Maybe the fire-breathing dragon moved out and the frost one took up the rent. Or maybe they all died to pyro-mages and the dragon ate them and left the others for later… How would I know?

Yeah buddy, you go have some tea and cake, I'll take care of the magic spiders!

Yeah buddy, you go have some tea and cake, I’ll take care of the magic spiders!

Along the path I come upon what looks to be some sort of fortress that was built into the mountainside. This might also coincide with the tower up by the dragon’s lair, though I saw no trap doors up there in that tower when I had investigated it for pyro-mages. I did find some potions up there though. Interesting. Maybe they’re all inside here, really. I head in. Consulting my map, I learn that the place is called Harmugstahl.

*snort* magic spiders! HAHA, BAH! Right! As if there's a such thing as a-holy smoke! That spider's on fire!

*snort* magic spiders! HAHA, BAH! Right! As if there’s a such thing as a-holy smoke! That spider’s on fire!

Once inside I hear a man’s voice say, “Thought I heard something…” followed by the sound of a two-handed mace squishing something very big. I creep into the main chamber and an adventurer talks to me. Something about magic spiders. As if having too many legs was bad enough, but magic? Hmm. The adventurer leaves. Clearly this is too much for him. Once he’s gone, one of the dead spiders glows as if it was one fire. My eyes wide, I think to myself, Yep. Gotta be a mage in here somewhere!

I make my way through the fortress, occasionally finding a spider or two. I found a journal lying on an alchemy table and I read it. Turns out this guy has been experimenting on the spiders here, trying to imbue them with magickal powers. Geez, isn’t their poisonous venom enough? Apparently not since this mage is trying to make fire, frost, and shock damaging type spiders. Maybe he’s really trying to make his own Pokemon? Gotta squish ’em all, I think to myself as I impale another spider with my dagger.

((I probably should have mentioned the fact that in Skyrim, the spiders are not your usual 1/2 inch to 3 inches big… No. For some bizarre reason, all the spiders are either as big as a beagle to as large as a small car.))

I have you now! *stab!*

I have you now! *stab!*

Now, being a master of sneaking about, I manage to kill all the spiders unseen. I just sneak up on them and stab them with my daggers. One of the spiders, however, discharged a burst of lighting at me when I killed it, making me jump in shock.

Moments later I realized it made all my fur stand on end. I look like a freaking porcupine now. Considering all the other spiders around, I almost wish I were! Smoothing my fur down again I set off.

I eventually enter a room and look down on the mage. He seems to be talking to himself and I realize that he’s an Altmer, or high elf. I hate high elves with a passion. I then realized he had three spiders locked up in a small cell, which he was facing and talking to, or so it would seem. And the lever to open the cell was right in front of me. Still well hidden and out of sight, I pull the lever.

“What the– NO! GET BACK IN THERE!” The altmer cries. He fires off lighting bolts at the spiders and kills them in seconds. Then I sneak up behind him and slit his throat. There! Now there ought to be no more giant mutant magic spiders in Skyrim! Then I finally leave the fortress and set off down the road. The nearest down is Karthwasten, but I’d rather go to Markarth since it has shops where I can sell all my plundered goods. Spider venom and whatnot… So much for the pyro mage theory I had about that stinkin’ fortress. Ah well.

Amaki’dar in Volskygge

Volskygge“I’ve been looking for you,” the courier said to me the other day. I smirked and thought to myself, Yes, I am quite hard to find with such a high skill in sneaking. “I’ve got something I’m supposed to deliver, your hands only.” I nod and think, That explains why my housecarls never give me mail.

“Lets see here… Got a letter, not sure who from, he wouldn’t say, just that he was a friend of yours. Well, that’s it. Got to go!” The courier leaves. I smile as I unfold the letter. I sometimes like to think that this friend of mine is really the courier, but I have no way to prove it of course.

The letter once again says I caused a bit of a stir when I used my Thu’um. I checked the location. Funny. I used it in a bandit’s hideout. I could have sworn I killed everyone there… hmm. Then again when the Greybeards shouted you could hear them all the way from Whiterun, so who knew? At any rate, now I am being pointed to a new place to unlock more dovakiin powers… in… Volskygge. Hmm. I sigh and put the letter way and head off.

Warm sands, friend. I am Amaki’dar.

My archery skills have reached their very best. I could possibly be the best archer in all of Skyrim, maybe even all of Tamriel. I probably am not, but I have yet to be invited to a contest for such skills. I’d win first prize maybe.

So why was I sneaking into some old ruins with my daggers in my paws instead of my trusty bow? Experience. I felt it was time for me to sharpen my skills with the one handed weapons, pun intended, and so I sneaked along the ruins and back-stabbed almost anything I came up to. The first half of the ruins was being occupied by bandits. You almost have to admire their bravery, camping in some old ruins where the undead were bound to rise from their tombs and attack. But they were unprepared for the Shadow Paw!

In one section there were various rooms and I stalked one bandit down the hallway. I came up behind her and slit her throat before she could shout. Then I went into one room to look around. Seeing nothing of value I considered checking the other rooms when I heard a human say, “I’m gonna find whoever did this!”

Whoops. Guess this Khajiit forgot to hide the body. No biggie. I move to the side of the door and wait. The human bandit walks in the room, and I kill him too. I glance down at the body, then shrug and move on. Why bother hiding the bodies in a crypt anyway?

Then I came upon a room. It had four switches, each marked with the symbol for an animal, and four large tombs standing upright int he center of the room with sconces on top of them. No way I could light them, so I look around. A book on a nearby pedestal catches my eye, and I read it…

All four are bound to the same land as we,
Some lay low, consumed in shadow,
Others stand tall, stretching their necks to see.
While none live in this sacred barrow,
They all demand your attention if you are to proceed.

The first fears all,
the second fears none.

The third eats what it can,
preferably number one.

The fourth fears the second,
but only when alone.

All must be activated in order,
if you wish to go home.

Aha. A puzzle. Nice. I glance around at the animal symbols, then back at the book. I set the book down and get to work. I knew the bear would fear nothing, and it doesn’t. I’ve seen bears attack dragons sometimes. So the bear had to be the second one. The fourth fears the bear, but only when alone? That has to be the wolf because they’d hunt in packs. That left the snake and the fox. I thought of the fox being the first because it would fear all, but then the third one “eats what it can, preferably number one”… a snake eating a fox? Can’t be right… Would a fox eat a snake, and would it be their favorite? I thought foxes liked chickens.

I shrug and pull the lever behind the snake symbol first. I knew that if I was wrong, then the tombs would burst open and I’d have to fight some draugr. I pulled the lever… and nothing happens to the tombs, but one of the sconces lights up. Snake was first indeed. How many snakes are there in skyrim anyway? I wondered to myself. I never see any.

I finish pulling all the levers. Turns out the solution was as I thought it would be: Snake, Bear, Fox, and Wolf. The gate ahead opens and I proceed into an area the bandits could not… maybe they could not read? Or maybe they never went this deep into the catacombs. I shrug and move on.

I discover later that the crypt I was in led up higher into the mountain and it opened up onto a peak. I found a word wall, and now know the second word for Whirlwind Sprint, and no sooner had I learned the word, a sarcophagus bursts open and a dragon priest comes out and sees me. Oh, bloody hell.

No longer stealthing, I charge at the priest, daggers flashing and slicing through the air! The dragon priest, named Volsung, conjures a frost atronach behind me. I ignore the atronach and slash away at Volsung, meanwhile Volsung proceeds to hit me with ice spikes. My stamina drains out of me from the cold spells, slowing me down, and Volsung tries to get behind me while the frost atronach tries to pound me into the ground. I spin about, drink a stamina potion very quickly and move in for the kill. Volsung goes down, turning into ashes as he crumbles, leaving only his armor behind for some reason, and without it’s master, the frost atronach melts away into nothingness.

I investigate the armor and find Volsung’s mask. Light armor, that’s always good. Fortify’s barter and carry weight by 20, that’s nice… and allows breathing underwater! That’s nice since I seem to have misplaced my necklace of water breathing! Sweet! I take the mask and pocket it for the time being.

Instead of making the trek back through the depressing crypt, I decide to slid down the snowy mountain. As I descend, I think to myself, Vol means horror in the dragon language… Vol-sung, eh? Must have been a horrible singer when he was alive. Well, I’m off to the nearest town to see if that stalker courier delivers another one of those notes of his telling me I caused a stir in a place where I left no survivors to tell about it. Should be interesting!

May your road lead you to warm sands!

Alduin’s Wall

Stone Bridges lead the way into the temple. Two sets of them have to be lowered to gain entry.

Sky Haven temple it is. Easy to get into it is not. A bunch of Forsworn live out here along the river, and they even have a Hagraven with them. Hagravens are women who supposedly gave up most of their humanity to gain more powerful magics, and as a result they grow feathers, talons, their noses become more hooked like a beak. They look like humanoid vultures to me, and they can be downright nasty in my opinion. As long as I can take any of my prey by surprise I’m okay, but if they see me and I’m a good distance away, they start throwing fireballs like crazy. And Hagravens are responsible for the Briarhearts, men who agree to have their hearts removed and replaced with a different sort of heart that grants them better strength or something. They’re pretty tough, like the male version of the Hagravens. Crazy, evil, dark magic stuff there.

And as if fighting to forsworn wasn’t bad enough, a dragon decides to go swooping in and attacking them and us at the same time. Us is myself, Delphine and Esbern. I met up with them just as the dragon came in, so while the dragon was attacking the Forsworn, I was attacking the forsworn. It wasn’t until most of them were dead when the dragon landed and was severely wounded by all the arrows and magical spells that found their mark upon him. By then I landed the last blow… an arrow right into his skull.

The last test where I have to drop some of my own blood onto a symbol in the ground. Can’t I just use graffiti?

Once everything is quiet, I lead the way towards the temple, which has a few puzzles to solve. The first are three pillars, which have three different symbols on them. I turn the pillars so the dragon symbol is facing front, and the first stone-bridge lowers. The second test is easy. Pressure plates cover the floor, and if you step on one of those, a trap goes off… in this case it’s a fire trap. Now normally I’d have to watch my step and only walk on the squares that have a dragon symbol on it. But I am a thief, and as such I have a very high sneak skill. With the perk point, I can walk on pressure plates without setting off the traps. So, naturally, I waltzed across the room at my leisure and pull the chain that turns the traps off. Now Esbern and Delphine can follow me. Lazy twerps they are.

This better be worth it. I can’t take pain, I can only give it!

Finally we reach the door and it’s sealed up. The only way to open it is for a bit of my blood to drip onto the rings on the floor. I cut my palm and let a few droplets fall. The rings start to circle, and when they’re done moving, the symbol of the dragon is restored in the floor, and the door opens. I go inside.

Esbern goes on up ahead and lights a brazier next to Alduin’s wall. I tell him to hurry up. I wasn’t too interested in the history – I just needed to know how to defeat Alduin. “Yes, yes, of course… let me see…”

The hallways have bas relief artwork in them. I always pronounced it as “Bass” like the fish, but it’s more like the “Bah” of a sheep. I still like “Bass.” They’re tasty.

Five minutes later he still hasn’t said anything further. I look around. Delphine should have come up and lit the other brazier… why hasn’t she? I run back down to the entrance to the temple and she’s just standing there. I get behind her and attack her with my claws (being a Khajjit, unarmed combat is much better since I attack with my claws, and all the other races just have their fists). She doesn’t respond. Finally I roll my eyes, and then shout, FUS RO DAH! and she gets blasted up the hallway by the force of my Thu’um. She takes her time getting to her feet… I might have stunned her a bit, but once she’s back up she starts walking at last.

While Delphine lags behind, Esbern and I approach the wall.

Yeah… I had to push her after all. (Thankfully she doesn’t react as if she’s under attack and I don’t get a bounty on my head. In a sense she acts as a follower now, and is immune to most attacks… I say most because I could still Shout at her and it would work)

10 minutes later I go back and give Delphine an Unrelenting PUSH up the stairs. Now Esbern can tell the both of us what the wall has to say for itself.

So now that both braziers are lit, Esbern moves to the center and comments that it looks like the ancient Nord heroes, also Dragonborn, used some sort of Shout to bring Alduin down… Delphine asks if I know of any shout that can knock a dragon out of the sky. I tell her no, so now I get to go back to High Hrothgar and ask the Greybeards. Delphine doesn’t like them too much, and the reason being is because all they do is sit on top of a mountain and meditate. What else do they do? Nothing. They don’t lift a finger or raise their voices to help out in the civil war or the dragon attacks.

The last bit of the wall… this is showing my destiny… I think.

But I do. If I am dragonborn, then it seems that my destiny is to stop Alduin before he destroys the world. Time go climb that big old mountain again. I hope there aren’t any frost trolls to be encountered this time.

You know, I think this is actually an ancient comic strip about a character named “Draco”

Throat of the World

I took a trip to one mountaintop where a dragon was sitting around and killed it, and I saw a Dragon Priest, a long dead mage of sorts that revered the dragons back when he was alive. Now undead he pops out of his coffin and tries to kill me. I wind up killing him and getting a mask, a staff and three words off the wall. That’s right, three. Zul Mey Gut, which translates as Voice Fool Far. This shout is really whispered, and in the distance the Thu’um is heard, thus confusing the enemy. While they’re busy trying to find the source of the shout, I could slip in behind them or pass them up entirely, and they’d never see me at all. Being a thief I know this will come in handy.

In other events, I had traveled with the two surviving members of The Blades up near Karthspire, fighting the forsworn so we can get access into Sky Haven Temple, which has Alduin’s wall inside. After discovering that a shout was used to battle with Alduin, I’m asked if I know of any shout. Since I don’t I head over to the Greybeards at High Hrothgar. The monks up there don’t know of the shout, but they point me to their master Paarthurnax.

Paarthurnax is actually a dragon who has lived for thousands of years, and his age is clearly visible in his wings and scales and one of his broken horns. He does teach me the last word for the Fire Breath shout, which makes it more powerful. It was just the word I was looking for, but not the one used to defeat Alduin. Paarthurnax tells me of what happened when Alduin was last in Skyrim. It turns out that Alduin was trying to dominate all the races off the world and three Nord heroes stopped him. It was an epic battle, but it looked as if Alduin might not be slain. At the last moment, an Elder Scroll was used to cast Alduin out of the world, where he became lost in the currents of time itself. When that happened, time was shattered there on that mountain peak, up on the Throat of the World. So if I can bring an Elder Scroll back to the peak, then I might be able to learn the shout I need to defeat Alduin. I might bring along a follower for this one though… If three Nords couldn’t bring low Alduin, how could one Khajiit solo him?

So I leave Paarthurnax and head back to the Greybeards to tell them what I know. They never messed around with Elder Scrolls, but point me to the mage’s college in Winterhold. I have never been there since I don’t mess with magic so much, but now I have a reason to visit the campus – to gain access to their library… and maybe I can boost my magic skills while I’m at it.

For the meanwhile I head back down to Whiterun. It’s dusk, and a few people are walking around, preparing to head home for the night, and I decide to mess with them. I try to shout Zul Mey Gut, but instead it comes out as Yol Tor Shul! Thankfully I only shouted the first two words, so it wasn’t too powerful, but I nearly roasted Belethor alive!

He drops down to one knee, scorched, and yells, “I YIELD! I YIELD!”

My eyes widen in shock and I earn myself a 40 gold price over my head in Whiterun. There ya go, my first official offense. I sheathe my bow quickly and a guard behind me tries to arrest me.

At this point I had many options. I could use my right as Thane and order them to unhand me and thus dismiss my criminal record. I also could bribe the guard by giving him about 400 gold pieces, but that doesn’t clear the charge permanently and other guards will still say, “Wait… I know you!” and if they press me they’ll say, “You’re a wanted criminal!” and try to arrest me all over again. Then again I could also say that I’m with the thieves guild and give him 20 gold pieces to clear my bounty instead of 40 gold. The other options are the normal ones, like pay off my bounty fully, the whole 40 gold; or I could go to jail and serve my time; or I could fight my way clear and forever be a wanted criminal.

So pay my bounty or serve my time… for shouting? Whatever happened to freedom of speech? I shrug my shoulders and pay 20 gold. I was lucky my shout didn’t incinerate Belethor, because then it would have been a thousand gold, and I’d have lost another vendor. I already lost Adrianne a while back due to a vampire attack.

Speaking of vendors, I’ve been able to invest 500 gold into each salesperson I could in Whiterun and in various other holds besides. I’ve been able to make expensive potions that I was able to sell off for quite a profit. The end result, I had over 100,000 gold pieces. (and I was worried about a 40 gold price on my head? BAH!)

I blew most of it buying a house in Solitude, but I can make it up pretty quickly, what with being a member of the thieves guild and all. But hands down, potion making is my profession for sure. Way better than Brynjolf’s fake concoctions in Riften. 😉

All this time, I’ve been putting off the civil war. I think I better meet up with Galmar Stone-fist before he freezes out there. We’re on a mission to retrieve the Jagged Crown for Jarl Ulfric before we being the war in earnest. I think I’d like to get this war over and done with before I go hunting for Elder Scrolls.

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