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> I am Lena Wolf, Lena's life as it happens
Lena Wolf
post Sep 12 2022, 03:58 PM
Post #421


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It is actually from Two Worlds II - one of the more advanced spells there. They also have falling rocks, but hey, who wants rocks when you can have anvils! biggrin.gif Scorpio brings this spell to Oblivion - he will be eventually released after thorough testing of his mettle.


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"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Renee
post Sep 12 2022, 10:22 PM
Post #422


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They are in Fort Dunstad, Lu and Lena. Yes, so true about the goblins keeping rats for pets .... and sustenance. Quite a parallel that these bandits also keep skeevers, probably for the same reasons. Not like there's any lack of them around, right? Much easier than trying to take down a mammoth.

Yikes, they're in Dawnstar Sanctuary! emot-ninja1.gif How does Lena feel about Astrid?

Wait, I'm looking at the wrong post. Hee hee, yeah I am. Okay. I'm up to the part when they're in Windhelm, inquiring about the murders. That's one of Skyrim's quests none of mine ever got around to doing. Maybe that'll change this winter.

Okay, NOW they're back in Dawnstar Sanctuary. Did you do some refurbishing in there?

Geralt lives in Lakeview Manor by the sound of it. I like that place. Or maybe Geralt just happens to be there, and Lena owns it. Ha, he's getting a unicorn. Funny.

Up to page 7 / 135.

This post has been edited by Renee: Sep 12 2022, 10:31 PM
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Lena Wolf
post Sep 12 2022, 11:17 PM
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Hey Renee! biggrin.gif I think skeevers probably don't taste as good as a mammoth though. But hey - bandits are cheap. tongue.gif

That murder quest in Windhelm... Yeah, we solved it, witnessed the murder, and the guard was literally standing right there and doing absolutely nothing! No wonder they've got necromancers running amok.

Dawnstar Sanctuary: yeah, I tidied it up a bit. For one, they needed a double bed... wink.gif There wasn't one. I didn't want them to use the floor... Hehe.

How Lena feels about Astrid? No love lost there. Astrid is essentially an imposter, certainly from Lena's point of view. Not in vanilla TES5, but this is not a vanilla TES5 story. In our story DB is not dead and Astrid's group is not DB. This is how I felt about it when playing TES5 anyway - it didn't feel right at all. Lena actually agrees with their mage - Festus Krex - he thought that without the structure and discipline of the original DB, their group was nothing but a bunch of lowlife murderers. He was right.

Lakeview Manor: yeah, it's nice. I like the location, too. Geralt is staying there, but it's Lena's house really. I'll be making a player house in the equivalent location in TWMP Skyrim Alive - it didn't make it into this release, but it will be added later. Wouldn't want to give it up! biggrin.gif

The unicorn reference smile.gif


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"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Renee
post Sep 13 2022, 02:14 PM
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Mm, that's what I figured. The Dawnstar Sanctuary in your gameworld has been given the Lena Wolf treatment. bigsmile.gif

Yes, my character who did DB in Skyrim despised Astrid for some reason. I don't really remember all the details. But my character (here she is) loved Babette and Cicero. Babs because my character always wanted children, yet could not bear. And Cicero because even though he's really annoying, he's at least quite lively. My Listener would "listen" to Cicero mumble and rant to himself for hours, while watching Babette sleep. sleep.gif

Congrads on making all the work you've been doing with TWMP, too. cake.gif Really proud that a Chorrolite has been involved with that.

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Lena Wolf
post Sep 13 2022, 02:54 PM
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7 Sun's Dawn, 4E203 - The fight

Fireballs were falling from above, hitting each and every Knight of Order in the area. Lena was sneaking between them, leaving them to their fate, trying to get to the next Priest instead. The Priest was out of reach of the rain of fire though, standing all the way at the back, behind tall obelisks of Order. Seeing his Knights burn up and crumble infuriated him beyond reason - he was shooting lighting in every direction without any particular target, and Lena tried to make sure not to become one.

"Kill the Priest, then quickly stuff three Hearts of Order into the obelisk," she kept repeating to herself as a mantra. That was definitely easier said than done. The Hearts had to be harvested from fallen Knights, which was easy, except for the part of making living Knights into fallen ones. Putting each Heart into the obelisk caused it to produce several fresh Knights for you to fight. The third heart would shut down the obelisk, but unless you had done it all quickly, the Priest would have been revived again and would try to reactivate the obelisk. And finally, even after both the obelisk and the Priest were out of action, the Knights would continue fighting until you killed each and every one of them...

Lena cast invisibility and quietly approached the Priest from behind, her Sufferthorn with paralyzing poison at the ready. One stab through the heart would kill any man, but Priests of Order were immortal as long as their Obelisks functioned. Yet, that magic-infused poison-coated dagger used from behind would be sufficient to knock out the Priest long enough to overload the obelisk with hearts and break the cycle. And should he wake up too early, the paralyzing poison would keep him down. In theory.

In practice it was all a lot more difficult, and it took Lena several stabs with her dagger to get the Priest down, which shaved off precious seconds from the paralysis duration. He would wake up any moment now... well, so be it. Lena dashed to the obelisk and started on the hearts.

The first heart produced three fresh Knights of Order who immediately rushed towards Lena. There was no time to cast two spells, so she cast invisibility and moved away. Confused, the Knights stopped, searching for something else to charge at. There was no time to lead them away... So Lena put the second Heart into the obelisk, dispelling her invisibility and instantly becoming the target of the three existing Knights and five fresh ones... Oh. Several swords hit her armour as she cast invisibility again.

Just one more heart to go...

At that point the obelisk produced a sharp lightning beam reviving the Priest of Order. It would take a few seconds and the cycle would start again! Not waiting for it, Lena threw the third heart into the obelisk which broke off the beam, but not before four fresh Knights of Order emerged from the lighting cloud. The Priest was on his feet too. A bit shaky, but alive and angry, he was charging his spell targeting the obelisk, trying to reactivate it...

"No, you don't!" Lena charged at him, drawing her sword this time. No time to cast a summoning spell - the Priest had to be interrupted before the obelisk would reactivate fully, and with its cap starting to lift up already, it had to be now!

Bzzzt!

Darkness.

...

Lena wasn't sure whether her eyes were open or closed, or whether she was alive or dead. Was this the Fade? She couldn't tell. The air around her seemed to be infused with lightning and shining, blinding flashes of white light. So many reflective surfaces... was she in a hall of mirrors?

Slowly the buzzing around her reached her consciousness and woke her up. Her eyes were open and she seemed to be alive. The shining reflective surfaces around her were the polished facets of the limbs and bodies of many Knights of Order, immobile and inactive. A huge ball of lightening above an obelisk was disappearing under the cap that was now moving down. "The Priest!" Lena remembered, scrambling to her feet. She had to prevent him from reactivating the obelisk. She looked around... yes, there he was, on the floor.

The Priest wasn't dead, but at least he was down. He could not be killed as long as the obelisk was active, and that was exactly the problem - the Priest and the obelisk kept reactivating each other. With the obelisk shutting down, Lena had to keep the Priest down as well, but he was stirring already. Wasn't this what happened just before she went down?

Still shaky from her own knock-out, Lena had no energy for a paralysing spell, and no time to coat her sword with a paralysing poison. This whole fight would restart in a moment...

A sudden frost permeated her body, she got hit with a frost spell, but who cast it? The Priests were masters of lightning, not frost, and the one before her was more concerned with reactivating the obelisk than with fighting. Frost... Lena felt a sudden surge of energy and hunger. With one leap, she fell onto the Priest who was about to cast his spell. Her fangs craved blood.

...

"This fight is too hard for you, mortal," Lena startled, hearing the Mazken Commander's voice just behind her. Mortal? Not quite, but the daedra looked down upon the immortality of vampires. "But I thank you anyway," the Commander continued. "You freed the Mazken Wellspring from the forces of Order!" Lena let go of the Priest's neck, using his robe as a napkin, and turned to the Commander. She didn't remember freeing the Wellspring, only fighting the Knights... But if the Commander was restored to her lively shape and biting language, then she must have freed the Wellspring somehow. "I grant you the power to summon a Mazken warrior to help in your battles!" The Commander continued in a rather solemn voice. "The Mazken will serve you now, Lord Sheogorath!"

She gave Lena a curt bow, turned around and marched off, leaving Lena standing amid the shiny remnants of the forces of Order. A tall figure in a Madness cuirass worn over a robe was approaching from the gloom of the corridor ahead.

"Glad to see you regain your strength," Scorpio said. "And sorry about that frost spell... but without it you were fading."

"Yeah, this fight was indeed too hard for me," Lena nodded, suddenly realising that her vampirism did not recede even though she drank mortal blood just now. "What happened? Did you free the Wellspring?"

"Yes," Scorpio was checking Lena's pulse. "You were doing all right with those hearts, but you lost a few moments, it seemed, and the Priest was waking up before you could get to him. I called up the lighting storm hoping to confuse them all as well as knock them out, but the Priest was immune to that... I couldn't get to him, so it had to be you."

"And you triggered my vampirism with that frost spell," Lena smiled at him. "That certainly gave me a kick!" She chuckled.

"You took down the Priest, the obelisk shut down, and after another lighting storm to clear the remaining Knights, I went and rang the chimes that crumbled the cage around the Wellspring," Scorpio concluded. "Then of course the Commander was here to thank you."

"While I was still feeding," Lena laughed. "Although that doesn't bother them at all."

"Job done, I'd say," Scorpio looked relieved. "Except... why are you still a vampire?"

"I shouldn't be," Lena agreed. "I'll have to feed again, sometimes it takes several goes. Or may be I'll keep it for a while - it is rather helpful in a fight, and we still have the Aureals' Wellspring to do!"

"But not before you get a good rest!" Scorpio took her arm and started walking towards the exit. "We'll return to Crucible, have a good dinner at Bernice's, then a proper night's sleep, and only then..."

They kept talking all the way to New Sheoth, where the Mazken guards greeted Lena with the new found respect for her as Lord Sheogorath.


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"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Lena Wolf
post Sep 15 2022, 04:58 PM
Post #426


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8 Sun's Dawn, 4E203 - A repeat of the day before

"I'm coming with your this time, end of story," Dylan was quite adamant at breakfast with Lena and Scorpio. "Resorting to triggering vampirism is going too far, especially in your condition," he added, pointing at Lena's pregnant belly. "And with the Mazken Wellspring restored, you cannot have any objections!" He concluded hotly.

"All right, all right," Lena was quite taken aback. "Sheesh... Let's just hope the Aureals will let you in, that's all."

...

Brellach was the Aureal Sanctuary and it had suffered the same fate from the forces of Order as the Mazken Sanctuary: it was invaded and the Wellspring was about to be blocked. The task of freeing it was nearly identical to the task of freeing the Mazken Wellspring that Lena and Scorpio accomplished the day before. The fighting had been heavy and fierce, probably too heavy for Lena, because she couldn't quite get those obelisks shut down and Priests killed without the extra strength and agility of a full-blown vampire. But every time her vampirism was triggered, it was getting a little more difficult to get it to recede again, so even though she fed on living blood since, she was still a vampire, which could not be good for the child she was carrying, as Dylan pointed out.

And so Lena, Scorpio and Dylan stood in front of the gates of Brellach, ready to undertake its rescue.

"He is not coming in!" The Aureal Captain glared at Dylan. "It is already a transgression to let a mortal in, but we'll make an exception for you as Sheogorath's Champion," he turned to Lena. "But no Mazken scum will drag his filth into our Sanctuary!"

And if his words weren't enough, he promptly attacked Dylan and a good old brawl followed.

"Hey!" Lena tried to put a stop to it. "HEY!!! By Sheogorath, STOP IT!!!"

The Prince's name worked its magic and the Captain and Dylan let go of each other's throats.

"Look here, Captain," Lena decided to try diplomacy. "Your Wellspring is about to be blocked by the forces of Order who have already invaded your Sanctuary and captured your Commander, right?"

"Y-yes," he nodded, looking worried. "How did you know about the Commander?" He squinted at Dylan.

"No, Dylan didn't tell me," Lena said decisively. "Sheogorath told me," she lied. It worked, and the Captain gave her his full attention. "It is not going to be easy to defeat them, and as soon as the Wellspring gets blocked, all of you will be petrified and won't be able to help," she added, stressing the word "petrified". The Captain winced and reluctantly agreed.

"Well, when you put it this way..." He eyed Lena's pregnant figure. "A mortal Champion, especially one with such a disfigurement, would require all the help she can get..." He eyed Scorpio as well, but seeing his robe, turned away in disdain. "And your only other friend is a mage! He'll be of no use in battle, I reckon." Scorpio raised an eyebrow and gave a little laugh, but didn't say anything. "Well, all right," the Captain sighed. "But don't make it into a habit!" He glared at Dylan. "This is a one in a lifetime exception, you hear me?!"

And before Dylan and the Captain could start another brawl, Lena grabbed Dylan's arm and hurried to enter Brellach.

...

Lightning was still fizzing around shiny metal objects on the floor that used to be Knights of Order. As soon as Lena, Scorpio and Dylan entered Brellach, they got attacked by a large group of Knights that were guarding the entrance hall. Dylan rushed right at them, Lena followed just behind him, and Scorpio stood back for a minute summoning a lightning storm. As soon as the storm hit, the battle was over.

"No use in battle, indeed," Dylan smirked, bashing in the last half-dead Knight's head. "But it must have been hard on you to take the heat every time," he turned to Lena. "Especially when you had to juggle those hearts trying to shut down an obelisk."

"Yeah, it was tricky," Lena nodded. "This time it will be a walk in the park," she smirked. "Come on, more shinies are just ahead."

...

"We've been betrayed!" The Aureals Commander screamed with rage when the crystals forming the walls of her cage were shattered. She glared at Dylan, then lashed out at Lena: "Traitor!" Her sword made a clanking noise when it hit Lena's Madness cuirass and was repelled by it. It seemed Cutter didn't just put her skill into that cuirass, but also her allegiance.

The Commander's outburst was quickly subdued by the combined forces of Dylan and Scorpio, and Lena had to jump in to prevent them from killing the Commander.

"No, you can't!" She bellowed and everyone froze, not quite expecting such a booming voice from a little Breton woman.

IPB Image
Zul Mey Gut!

"What..?" After the shock of Lena's bellowing scream, came an eerie sound, quite loud but not overpowering, sounding here, there and everywhere... "What was that? Who said that?" Dylan and Scorpio let go of the Commander, and the Commander sheathed her sword, more concerned by the sound than by the would-be traitors before her.

"We are no traitors," Lena said calmly. "We are here to rescue your Wellspring from the forces of Order. I am Sheogorath's Champion."

"But I heard a dragon," the Commander turned to her. "That was Alduin's call."

"Not Alduin's," Lena shook her head. "I am Dragonborn."

"Oh." The Commander measured up Lena with her gaze. "Previous Dragonborn were more impressive," she added in her usual haughty tone. "Well, mortal, you freed me, and now you will assist me in freeing our Wellspring. You may bring your... companions," she added, throwing disgusted glances at Dylan and Scorpio, then lingering on Dylan, she breathed in, ready to utter a new objection to this "Mazken scum" no doubt, but Lena already started marching down the corridor, with Dylan and Scorpio following. "Hey, how do you know where it is?!" The Commander shouted, running after them.

"Done it last time already," answered Lena, without stopping. "But you chose to forget that bit," she added after a moment. She'd had enough of daedric insults.

...

"Well, that's the Aureals out of the way," Lena sighed with relief when the Commander and a few Aureals around her turned to stone in the next section of the fort. "The forces of Order have finally blocked the Wellspring, so it's up to us again to deal with them," she added, turning to Dylan and Scorpio. "At least we know what to do."

"The same as yesterday," Scorpio nodded, taking up a position in a dark corner.

"But this time I'll take the heat so you can run around the obelisks," Dylan readied his mace.

Lena was just going to summon Dessos as well, or may be a Mazken warrior, or at least a daedroth, but just like the day before, a wave of Knights of Order was upon them before she had time to make up her mind. Too many choices can make life difficult at times. So, without thinking, she summoned a clannfear - a spell she had practised so many times, that it came to her almost like a reflex. The clannfear let out a high pitched shriek and tore through the Knights of Order like a hot knife through butter. Lena threw the last glance at the chaos behind her, made sure that Scorpio was well out of sight, cast invisibility and focussed on locating the nearest Priest and his obelisk.

...

"That wasn't nearly as hard as yesterday," Scorpio came out of the darkness when the last Priest of Order and his obelisk was dealt with. Dylan was finishing a few remaining Knights that weren't quite put out by the fire, frost and lightning that Scorpio kept raining on them.

"No anvils today?" Lena looked around in slight disappointment.

"That spell takes too much energy to cast," Scorpio shook his head. "Elemental magic is far easier, and I had to cast a lot of it today," he kicked some shiny bits out of the way. "They are less susceptible to it than to the brute force of a falling anvil, but it still works well enough," he smiled. "Shall we ring the chimes and remove the blockage from the Wellspring?"

"Not yet," Lena winked. "We are in no rush."

Dylan laughed with gratitude and Scorpio spotted a bench and dropped onto it, his tiredness obvious now. "No rush indeed!" He nodded smiling, reaching for his last restorative potion.

Lena left them to sit and relax and proceeded to check every Priest on the ground. Was any of them still alive? "Yes, you will do nicely," she finally found one that was deeply unconscious but still breathing. She hadn't fed for over a day, and with all the running around and fighting, she was famished as well as tired. Hoping that this time she would not be interrupted, she bit his neck.

...

"Ah, you look better!" Scorpio smiled at her when she returned to their bench, her cheeks pink and her eyes amber.

"It was time to put vampirism back in remission," Lena nodded, "and those Priests weren't supposed to survive anyway. Let's ring the chimes and free the Wellspring, I've had enough of this place."

...

"...and the Aureals will serve you now, Lord Sheogorath!" The Commander finished her speech of thanks, and Lena, Dylan and Scorpio could finally leave for New Sheoth.

"So, what's next?" Dylan asked, shaking off the "golden mud", as he put it.

"Now we return to Sheogorath just in time to watch him transform into Jyggalag," smirked Lena. "I'm sure he'll wait for us to actually see it. Quite a spectacle! He'll break his cane in the process, and his cane is not just a walking stick, it's an enchanted staff, and I'll have to get my own. That's more dungeon delving and fighting, with a few twists along the way. And then, soon after that anyway, I'll have to face Jyggalag in a duel. If I fail to defeat him, this Realm will crumble, as it has done many times. But last time I won, and I intend to do it again," she concluded firmly. "So, get ready for the show."


--------------------
"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Lena Wolf
post Sep 26 2022, 08:02 PM
Post #427


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11-15 Sun's Dawn, 4E203 - Symbol of Office

"You again!" Dyus looked bored. "I already told you how to get Sheogorath's Symbol of Office! What are you doing here, anyway?"

"You told me last time," Lena sighed. "History is repeating itself - there's another Greymarch going on, and I am the Champion again."

"Oh, I hadn't realised it's already another era," Dyus sighed too. "I must have dozed off for a few centuries... It's not easy being a Chamberlain to a Prince that is never there."

"But... Why are you still here?" Lena suddenly realised she never understood why Dyus was kept alive. "If you used to be the Chamberlain to Jyggalag when Jyggalag was a proper Prince, then why did Sheogorath not kill you when he took over?"

"You aren't as smart as you should be," Dyus clicked his tongue. "If I was dead, who would have produced Sheogorath's cane for you? Eh? That Haskill isn't up to it!" He snorted.

"Tell me about Jyggalag," Lena said suddenly. "About the time before Sheogorath. I know it was the other Princes who created him, but I don't understand why Jyggalag keeps resurging."

"Well..." Dyus smiled and shifted in his chair. "If you must know..." He was about to start his tale when a suspicion made him reconsider. "Actually, why do you need to know this? Just get on with your saving-the-madness business! Jyggalag will vanish again, whether you defeat him or not." He squinted at Lena.

"It's not the madness that I am saving," Lena shook her head. "Although being Sheogorath's Champion undoubtedly qualifies me as mad, I like to think that I'm not crazy," she smiled at her own pun. "I'm doing it because of the people who inhabit the Shivering Isles. It's their home. They are - as orderly people like to put it - not right in their heads one way or the other. They are different. They don't fit in the societies that they come from. But here in the Isles different is normal, eccentricity is expected. If Jyggalag wins the battle, the Isles will crumble and everyone living here will die. It is for them that I fight."

"That doesn't explain why you need to know about Jyggalag," Dyus wasn't convinced.

"I don't need to know, I want to know," Lena tried again. "Is it that the Daedric curse had failed and the other Princes didn't manage to fully transform Jyggalag into Sheogorath? Is it because they've done it on purpose so as not to allow madness to take hold? Or..?"

"None of it and all of it," Dyus' expression softened. "Sanity is considered to be middle ground to everything - a perfectly sane person is moderate in every aspect of his life. He is as grey as my robe," Dyus smirked. "I used to think of myself as perfectly sane... as did Jyggalag. But look around you. The obelisks are perfectly symmetrical, mathematical even... The metal is perfectly smooth to the point that it shines... The Knights of Order are all exactly the same..." Dyus' glance became wistful. "Does that sound like middle ground to you?"

"It's another extreme," Lena nodded. "Then the duality of Sheogorath is not just in Mania and Dementia, but also in life versus order... life versus death."

"Death?" Dyus jumped in his chair. "You equate Jyggalag with death?"

"His Knights' hearts do not beat," Lena looked thoughtful. "His Priests are under a coercion spell of some kind, and the people that they convert, come under that spell too. They give up their lives. They are still breathing, but I've seen zombies with more creativity."

"Ah," Dyus was smiling. "So, what is life?"

...

This discourse with the Keeper of the Library of Jyggalag took the better part of the day. Strictly speaking, Lena didn't have to come to him yet, she could have simply gone to collect the two ingredients that she knew she needed for her Symbol of Office of Sheogorath, but since Dyus had to make that cane, she thought it polite to see him first.

"Would you like to be released from this place?" She suddenly asked, remembering how Dyus had complained of being imprisoned there.

"Released?" He raised an eyebrow. "Oh, the official tale..." he smiled. "I complained of being imprisoned here, didn't I?" He chuckled. "Well, it is officially true. In reality however I could walk out those doors any moment, but where would I go? And more importantly - why? The world outside is too chaotic for the likes of me. No, thank you, I quite like my 'prison'."

"Then you belong in the land of Sheogorath," Lena smiled.

...

The two items that Lena needed for her Symbol of Office were the Eye of Ciirta and a Branch of the Tree of Shades. Ciirta was supposedly the only survivor of the previous Greymarch, and she had seen with her very eyes that Sheogorath was not there to defend his Realm when Jyggalag appeared. However, she had no idea that Sheogorath and Jyggalag were one and the same, and so she proclaimed that Sheogorath had "run off" and abandoned them. With that mighty knowledge she founded an anti-Sheogorath cult, and her eye would therefore form a nice topping for Lena's Symbol of Office.

But this was the last time around, and it made sense then. Now things were different. Ciirta was by no means the only survivor of the previous Greymarch because Lena had defeated Jyggalag in a duel and the Realm did not crumble. Everyone survived! Except Ciirta who died by Lena's hand, so that Lena could have the eye for her Symbol of Office then.

"I bet there's another Ciirta though," Lena was musing on her way to the Howling Halls. Fanatics didn't need the basis of their cult to be true, they just needed it to be catchy. She had no doubt that some woman calling herself Ciirta would be there claiming to have seen Sheogorath running off and abandoning his Realm. "So getting her eye simply equates to rooting out a nasty nest of cultists," Lena concluded. It was almost too sane for the Isles.

13 Sun's Dawn

The Howling Halls was filled with heretics - deniers of Sheogorath. There were quite a few of them in the Shivering Isles, and the most fanatical ones seemed to have flocked here. Their fanaticism however also made them blind to the possibility of being removed, one by one, by Sheogorath's Champion. Lena remembered the difficult battles she got into last time; these heretics were formidable fighters, and their magic was very strong. There were two ways of going about getting Ciirta's eye: the hard way and the clever way. The hard way was fighting the heretics, the clever way was to confuse them, get straight to Ciirta and minimise the fighting. After all, put on one of their robes, and they would think you were one of them... Up to a point, as Lena found out on many occasions. The heretics weren't complete idiots, after a while they attacked you anyway.

No, Lena didn't like either of those ways very much, and so she chose the third way: quiet assassination. Yes, there were a lot of heretics to deal with, but Lena had enough poisons for all of them. What better opportunity to practice her chameleon spell - she was still nowhere nearly as good at it as Lucien.

She proceeded methodically from room to room using the same strategy: cast on chameleon and stay out of sight; cast frenzy on a group of heretics and wait until they start fighting; then shoot poisoned arrows at them, one per person, so as not to attract attention. Beware of their summons. Keep to the shadows. Finish off any survivors with a dagger from the dark.

Finally she found Ciirta. Not the same woman as last time of course, but she was the leader of these heretics and that's what counted - her eye would do.

...

With the heretics eliminated, Lena returned to Crucible for some rest, after all she had been out in the field for over three days. Dylan and Scorpio were not keen to let her go on her own, but she insisted that getting her Symbol of Office was a task for her alone, in particular the task of getting a Branch of the Tree of Shades that she had to do next.

15 Sun's Dawn

The Tree of Shades stood in Milchar. It was a very large ruin filled with the usual monsters, and although Dylan or Scorpio could very well have helped Lena to get through those areas, she decided to do the whole thing on her own. She spent the previous day making poisons for the creatures and potions for herself, while Dylan insisted on going over her gear and having Cutter polish out every last dent on Lena's armour, even though Lena had protested that she was going to a fight and not a fashion show. "You are going to want to be sneaking in heavy armour," Dylan shook his head. "It must fit you perfectly, or you'll be heard from miles away." This was a good argument, she had to admit.

Going through the halls of Milchar, Lena was mentally thanking Dylan for his diligence.

Finally, she reached her goal - the Grove of Reflection. The Tree of Shades spread its branches there, just cut one off and leave. But Lena knew that it wasn't that simple. Any minute now... she readied her Shadowhunt with a poisoned arrow knocked on.

There was a hollow sound and an assassin in Madness armour appeared in the centre of the grove, readying her own Shadowhunt... But Lena shot first, then summoned a daedroth while the assassin was momentarily staggered by the shot. The poison was silencing her, so no second daedroth appeared.

Lena knew the assassin's weakness: she wasn't strong in a head on melee combat, and her Apprentice birthsign made her vulnerable to magic. But she had a bag full of poisons and antidotes, as well as some shielding jewellery, and Lena was determined not to allow the assassin to use any of that. Another arrow with silencing poison followed, and the daedroth started pressing the assassin into a corner. A shock bolt or a fireball would be helpful too, Lena thought, as long as she stayed away from frost spells as those might trigger the assassin's vampirism, and that was the one advantage that Lena did not wish to face - a vampire's invisibility spell could not be silenced.

But there was no time for an arrow and a fireball, Lena had to choose, and decided for another arrow with an electrocution poison - her specialty. The daedroth was keeping the assassin busy, preventing her from drinking potions or poisoning her own weapons.

Then - puff! The daedroth was gone, banished to Oblivion.

"I've got poisons too," the assassin grinned, knocking on an arrow. "I've had a few weapons poisoned in advance, Sister."

A sharp pain tore through Lena's shoulder - the arrow got her under the pauldron. She felt her blood boil with poison, then cold braced her, and she thought she would faint... what kind of poison was that? She wondered.

"Excellent stuff," the assassin came closer, watching Lena convulsing with pain on the ground. She unsheathed her Sufferthorn, also glistening with poisonous coating. "I like the paralysing effect, makes it so much easier to get things done. Here, let me finish it."

But before the tip of the assassin's dagger could make contact with Lena's side, just under the arm, at an angle to get her heart, Lena was on her feet leaping away in an unbelievable jump that left her astounded and the assassin confused. Lena touched her teeth - the fangs had returned. Evidently, paralysis got wiped away by resurging vampirism.

The battle was quickly ended after that. Hidden by the Embrace of Shadows, Lena approached the assassin from behind and put her own Sufferthorn through the assassin's side, just under the arm, at an angle to get the heart. It was all over. Lena bent over the assassin's corpse, putting a hand on the belly - there was no heartbeat inside. "The clone isn't perfect," Lena reflected, as the new life of Lena's unborn child had not been duplicated. She took the assassin's new weapon - Shadowrend - and claimed a branch from the Tree of Shades.

...

"Well, well! The vampire returns," Dyus greeted Lena with a smile. "You were a vampire last time as well, I remember. Got triggered fighting yourself, did it?" He took the Eye of Ciirta and the Branch of the Tree of Shades and busied with making the Staff of Sheogorath for Lena.

"Yeah, she is a nasty piece of work," Lena grinned. "But she forgot to avoid poisons with frost effects. And there was no child in her belly."

"Ah, that is interesting!" Dyus turned around, nearly dropping the staff. "We didn't consider that the Champion might be pregnant! Most interesting indeed! I would need to adjust the calculations..." His eyes glazed over in thought, and Lena hurried to bring him back from his trance.

"Yes, later! Don't drop that staff!" And when Dyus got back to it, Lena remembered something: "What do you mean - we will have to adjust the calculation? Who is we?"

"Sheogorath and I, of course," Dyus smiled. "Why do you think he keeps me alive?" He winked, handing her the finished staff. "Now, you know what to do with it - dip it into the Font of Madness to activate. Go on, I've got work to do..." And with that he walked off into what used to be the Library of Jyggalag, and Lena got the distinct impression that the Library was still there, simply veiled rather than destroyed.

She got her staff, so she left too.


--------------------
"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Renee
post Oct 1 2022, 02:37 AM
Post #428


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Page 7, post 135: I like this title, A Woman's Scorn! Wow, Lena's being spied upon by Rayenna, whoever that is. Doesn't really matter though, I bet Rayenna won't make it to the end of this episode. Oh wow, you're giving an entire backstory to this scorned Redguard. What a pleasure.

"Rayenna met Lucien on many occasions - she made sure to create them." -- that's intense! Hmm, and she thinks Lena is just in her 20s, as well.

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Lena Wolf
post Oct 17 2022, 12:44 AM
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17 Sun's Dawn, 4E203 - The Duke and the Duchess

"So all I have to do now is dip this stick into the Font of Madness," Lena grinned pointing at the staff she got from Dyus - her Symbol of Office of Sheogorath.

Scorpio picked up the staff, twirling it in his hands. Dylan watched, his eyes narrowing in suspicion.

"And of course the Font will have been clogged, or blocked, or defiled, or otherwise made unusable, right?" He smirked.

"Well, we don't know it yet, officially," Lena winked. "But last time there was a bit of a problem, yes."

"And this time we're coming with you," Scorpio concluded firmly. "Where is it?"

...

The Font of Madness was located by Sheogorath's throne in the Palace in New Sheoth. The entrance to the source was concealed behind the throne, guarded by a Mazken and a Golden Saint. Nothing could breach this double security, could it? And yet...

"The Font of Madness has been taken over," Haskill informed Lena, Dylan and Scorpio when they approached the throne. "This is like My Prince said: because you didn't take a side this time, both the Duke of Mania and the Duchess of Dementia are against you. It's doubled your troubles," he added with some excitement.

"I thought as much," Lena nodded.

...

The root tunnels leading to the source of the Font of Madness were normally peaceful, the vegetation tended to by domesticated gnarls. These gnarls were still roaming the tunnels, minding their own business. But there were also other creatures there, and they were attacking everything and everyone, including the docile gnarls.

"So how do you tell a docile gnarl from a mad one?" Scorpio was examining two dead gnarls which looked exactly the same.

"The mad one attacks you," Dylan grinned. "They are the same otherwise."

After some time the Knights of Order made their appearance and the fighting intensified. Finally the tunnel opened onto a large cave with two platforms in it - the Pool of Mania and the Pool of Dementia. As expected, the Duke and the Duchess in full Order regalia were presiding over their respective platforms, surrounded by Priests of Order and innumerable Knights of Order. This was going to be tough!

"The traitor is here!" Bellowed Thadon. "Kill them!!!" He didn't need to issue that order really because by the time he stopped shouting, the fighting was already in full swing. Syl stood quietly on her platform, propping herself up on her Nevershatter, watching the fight. Her time would come later. Where Thadon was optimistic about the odds and the possibility of the winning that battle, Syl expected unpleasant surprises, setbacks and losses, but that did not reduce her determination. If anything, she had more resolve than ever - she would see it through, the traitor would be stopped. She would do it herself, if need be.

The first round of fighting saw an army of Knights of Order reduced to a smouldering pile of metal parts, with a few Priests from either side falling to Scorpio's magic, Dylan's arrows and Lena's backstabs. Suddenly, Thadon called off the assault.

"You know you can't win, right?" He said softly, looking straight at Lena. "We're both here this time, Madness falls to the forces of Order!"

"Does it?" Lena smiled at him. "Grey eyes don't suit you, Thadon. I preferred your eyes green and your robe less... err... metallic," Lena smirked. "Is your mind clear of greenmote now? Surely, that can't be good!"

"How dare you speak to the Duke of Mania like that, traitor!" Syl couldn't keep her calm. "You will die here!" She gestured to her Priests of Order and they resumed their attack. Another round of fighting followed.

...

"All right, all right, stop it!" Thadon called a pause in the fighting again after several more Priests lay dead in the waters of the Pools of Madness. "This is sheer madness! You shouldn't be fighting us, you should join us! Together we'll overthrow Sheogorath once and for all!"

Scorpio was watching this outburst with curiosity but Dylan felt his anger rise in him - Sheogorath was his Prince, his Lord and his Creator, and he would not have anyone call for Sheogorath's demise, and least of all some Maniac who flipped to the forces of Order. "You'll pay for that!" He bellowed and lunged towards Thadon, his mace aiming at Thadon's crowned head.

"Mazken scum!!!" Thadon bellowed back, sending some shock bolts towards Dylan and knocking the mace out of his hand. Without his mace, Dylan simply fell onto Thadon, they dropped on the ground and started wrestling, rolling around in the dust.

Surprisingly, Syl called off the remaining Priests who were ready to intervene, walked over to Thadon's platform and joined Lena and Scorpio to watch the wrestling. Everyone seemed to be too perplexed by it to continue fighting.

Thadon's crown rolled around the platform and came to rest at Lena's feet. Lena picked it up and put it on. Syl watched her, then broken into a smile. "You wear your enemy's crown - only a Demented would do that. I always knew you were one of us," she said, touching Lena's Madness armour. "As are your friends," she shot a glance at Scorpio who too was wearing Madness armour. "The next Sheogorath will be Demented," she concluded with satisfaction.

"The next Sheogorath?" Lena raised an eyebrow. "You do not expect Jyggalag to persist, then?"

"Don't listen to Thadon," Syl smirked. "He's a bit... over-enthusiastic." She looked at him fondly as Dylan was working his skin into the colour of his own. "You've done a good job last time overall," she raised her eyes to look at Lena. "But I wasn't there to guide you and when I returned, Dementia was full of colour! That Sheogorath was too Manic, it took me a long time to put everything back where it belonged. But this time you will relinquish control to me immediately and I'll see to it that colour is wiped out from the Shivering Isles! Dementia will rule!"

"Syl, you are forgetting yourself," Lena said coldly. "I am Lord Sheogorath. I am in charge."

"Then you die, traitor!!!" Syl bellowed, swinging her Nevershatter at Lena, who only just managed to dodge. Scorpio shot a fireball at Syl, pushing her back, the Priests of Order joined in and another round of fighting engulfed them all.

...

"All right, all right, you win!" Thadon was trying to cover his face with his hands - he had long given up attempting to defeat Dylan. "It's enough!" He half-moaned, half-screamed.

"Say you take it back!" Dylan raised his fist, ready to land it on Thadon again.

"Take back what? Yes, I take it back! Whatever! All of it! Just stop!" Thadon was pleading.

With all but one Priests of Order dead, Syl called a pause to the fighting, and Lena walked over to Dylan. "That's enough, I think, you got him," she whispered in his ear. "We don't need to actually kill them," she added softer still. Dylan nodded and got up, still glaring at Thadon who let out a great sigh of relief.

"Hand over your Nevershatter," Lena turned to Syl. "We need to end this."

"Indeed," Syl replied, smiling, but something in that smile put Lena on guard. Syl raised her hammer, as if to hand it to Lena, and when Lena stepped towards her, Syl swung it forcefully, aiming at Lena's head. Lena dodged - she had expected it.

"I'll cut your heart out again, if I have to," Lena hissed, tossing a fireball. Syl recoiled, but swung the Nevershatter again. Lena dodged again, drawing her sword. They started circling each other, every now and again Syl would attempt another swing, Lena would dodge and lunge with her sword in one motion, Syl would dodge Lena's sword with agility unexpected in a small woman wielding a heavy hammer. But then, Syl wasn't just any woman, and she aimed to wear out Lena who, although not wielding a heavy weapon, was wearing heavy armour, the type of armour that wasn't designed for jumps and dodges. Syl was right - Lena was getting tired.

"Figure out what I would do, and do it," Lena heard Sheogorath's voice in her head again. But Sheogorath was gone, transformed into Jyggalag, surely, he couldn't be speaking to her? Perhaps it was just a memory. Not dwelling on the origin of the voice, Lena focused on the words it spoke. What would Sheogorath do if he found himself loosing a stalemate?

He would cheat.

He would appoint a champion.

He did appoint a champion.

Lena summoned a daedroth. Now, why did she not think of that earlier? Syl shrieked and jumped back, losing her focus long enough for Lena to step behind the daedroth and for the daedroth to cast on his shield and step forward.

"Do you want help?" asked Dylan, helping Lena to get off Syl's platform. "I thought you didn't want to kill her."

"I don't and I don't," Lena smiled. "The daedroth with loose interest as soon as Syl is knocked out."

...

With both Pools of Madness cleared of the corruption of Order, Lena, Dylan and Scorpio returned to the throne room of the palace and Lena dipped her Staff of Sheogorath into the restored Font of Madness. She then took her place on the throne and the Mazken and Aureal Commanders pledged her their loyalty. Any moment now a messenger would burst in announcing the appearance of Prince Jyggalag in New Sheoth... Did Lena have enough time for one more task in between?

"My first order as renewed Lord Sheogorath is..." she started saying.

"My Lord, the forces of Order are attacking New Sheoth!" An out-of-breath messenger burst in from the courtyard. No, it seemed she didn't have time for another task.

...

The battle in the courtyard of the Palace in New Sheoth was epic, as was befitting any battle with a Daedric Prince. Sheogorath was gone, the Prince in the courtyard was Jyggalag proclaiming loudly that no mortal or daedra would stand in his way. Mortal courtiers ran back for cover, while daedric guardians ran forward to face the many Priests and Knights of Order that accompanied Jyggalag on his march. Even Dylan and Scorpio involuntarily took a step back for a moment.

Prince Jyggalag looked exactly the same a Knight of Order, except that he was at least four or five times taller than any of them. How do you defeat such a metal giant?

"Aim at the joints," Lena winked to her companions. "Every hit counts. He will fall eventually," she added with certainty.

The battle was fierce, as expected. The obelisks in the courtyard were producing endless Knights of Order who were engaging equally endless waves of Mazken and Aureals. This time Lena didn't bother trying to close the obelisks - they would freeze as soon as Jyggalag fell.

"You hold the staff but you are no Daedric Prince!" Jyggalag bellowed insults at Lena, but she just ignored his words and focused on hitting his knees - this was as high as she could reach. She was also doing her best to avoid getting hit as she feared that one strike with Jyggalag's sword would spell her end. This was a game of cat and mouse, and the cat was winning at first, having impaled Dylan fairly quickly and having sent Scorpio flying into the corner of the courtyard with a single strike. But Lena kept close to Jyggalag's ankles, in the blind spot of his sword.

Finally, one of Jyggalag's legs faltered. He stumbled, bending backwards, but then steadying himself and continuing the fight, albeit with a limp. Lena redoubled her strikes, switching to his other leg. The battle seemed to last forever.

...

"Enough! I am beaten," Jyggalag's voice sounded hollow as his huge hulk collapsed on the courtyard lawn. "You win. Again!" He sounded surprised, Lena noticed.

...

The courtyard of the Palace in New Sheoth was covered in bodies. Lena walked between them, looking for Priests of Order who were mortal, for any unfortunate courtiers or citizens who got caught up in the fighting, and for Dylan and Scorpio, who were not mortal, but whom she still dreaded to find dead.

She found Dylan first. A great wound in his chest had stopped bleeding, but his heart wasn't beating - his heart had been sliced in two with Jyggalag's sword. Dylan was dead.

Of course, Dylan was a daedra, so he would be reborn, and Lena kept telling herself that, and yet... Dylan was dead. He was lying on the lawn, his eyes closed, and he wasn't breathing. Lena broke down in tears, dropped to her knees and found she couldn't get up.

...

"He will return," Scorpio said softly in her ear. "He will be reborn. We had cleared the Spring." Of course Lena knew that. It were not the words that comforted her, it was the arm that Scorpio put around her shoulders and the fact that at least one of her friends didn't fall in battle. Lena turned to look at him through her tears. He looked bruised, he was wounded, but he didn't fall.

...

"What are your orders, Lord Sheogorath?" A Mazken guard approached Lena as she and Scorpio stumbled into the Palace. No rest for the wicked, as they say. A ruler has to rule. Lena straightened her back.

"First of all, find Thadon and Syl below in the Pools of Madness and take them to the dungeons." The guard nodded, but Scorpio raised an eyebrow. "What?" Lena smirked. "They did revolt against Lord Sheogorath, remember? They will now receive their punishment." Then, turning to the guard, she continued: "After that, clear the courtyard. Bury the mortals, remove the daedra... however you normally dispose of daedric bodies until they are reborn." She realised that she didn't know the ways of daedra and wondered what would happen to Dylan.

"They will be reborn in their bodies which will be repaired in the Wellness Springs," the guard replied, noticing Lena's confusion.

"Good," Lena nodded. "Then..."

She walked with the guard, giving orders. Scorpio stood back, letting Lord Sheogorath assume her familiar role. The Greymarch was over.


--------------------
"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Lena Wolf
post Oct 21 2022, 07:45 PM
Post #430


Mouth
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Joined: 18-May 21
From: Bravil



1 Morning Star, 4E203 - Home, at last

"Finally!" Hauk dropped heavily onto a chair in his house in Balmora, exhausted. "What a mess!"

The new year 4E 203 had just started - it was 2 a.m. and Hauk was not only tired, but also wounded, bruised, hungry and ill. He was really getting quite enough of the Blight Disease and the variety of common diseases so easily caught from anything and everything in Morrowind, it seemed. He didn't remember it being quite so bad during his visits before... Could it be that his age was catching up with him? He shook his head and downed another Cure Blight Disease potion, which, in itself was a story and a half.

...

The last two weeks went like a blur. The last thing he could remember clearly, was him arriving in Gnisis with the purpose of joining the Imperial Legion to establish a credible cover. For a Legion veteran of thirty odd years that he was, the notion no longer seemed ridiculous - he'd done it several times throughout his service. Optio of Special Division... No, he was to be a fresh recruit once more.

General Darius understood the real reason for Hauk's joining the Legion, and he also knew of Hauk's recent involvement with the Blades. However, a credible cover required that Hauk went through the motions convincingly enough, and not just for the locals, but also for fellow recruits. It would not do if some Spearman started spreading rumours that the new recruit wasn't all that he seemed to be - an ageing Nord in need of funds. And so Hauk performed a few tasks in Gnisis, none of which seemed particularly suited for a new recruit... Get a land deed from a recent widow, which turned into a murder inquiry; rescue a rich pilgrim from the ashlanders without killing anyone; rescue a tax collector from imprisonment without drawing the ire of a powerful mage; investigate a cult plotting to murder the Emperor... These tasks were more suited for an Optio of Special Division than a fresh recruit, but the others didn't know the details, and Hauk's quick advance to Agent didn't surprise anyone. At which point General Darius thanked Hauk for his services, saying that the next rank would be Champion, which Hauk firmly refused.

With the cover established, Hauk considered his options. He was out of poisons, he had caught Blight Disease several times but had to continue going, resulting in greater wounds and more severe battle fatigue than he would normally have experienced. "Is that what being a Bosmer feels like?" He wondered. Bosmers were not considered heavyweights when it came to fighting, a few exceptions notwithstanding. The problem with Blight Disease, besides its debilitating effects, was that Hauk could not find any potions to cure it, and had to retrace his steps to a shrine to get a blessing. He even used a scroll of Divine Intervention at some point, expecting to be teleported to Gnisis, but somehow ending up at Fort Frostmoth on Solstheim, then spending a day sailing back to Khuul in the company of a half-frozen Argonian. "Why do Argonians insist on coming to Skyrim?" Hauk thought watching the slow movements of Basks-In-The-Sun. "Even his name tells you he shouldn't be here..."

Finally back in Gnisis, Hauk went straight to the Imperial Shrine to get his Blight Disease cured. But when he inquired about some potions against it, he was told that alas, those were not available. "I have plenty of potions to cure common diseases though," the alchemist beamed at him. "But not against the Blight - we have a... ah... disagreement with the Telvanni," he added with a grimace. The Telvanni. That had to be Hauk's next stop.

But first... The trek to the other side of Vvardenfell was long and tedious, full of blighted creatures and people and devoid of shrines that could cure the disease, so before he went any further, he had to be able to stock up on these potions. "I'll have to call in a favour, there's no way around it," he thought.

...

"That should do it," Hauk stood over the corpses of three "friendly" smugglers who turned very unfriendly the moment Hauk attacked them. Murder in Morrowind was the business of Morag Tong, but with his reputation and especially after his meeting with Eno Hlaalu previously, Hauk expected to be watched. If so, a representative should be contacting him soon enough, just making sure that the murdered smugglers were not subjects to a writ, and to remind Hauk to stay out of Morag Tong's way. Checking the corpses, Hauk's attention was caught by an impressive bare bone spine and ribs worn by one of them. "Oh, a Trollbone cuirass!" His eyes lit up. "Rare even in Skyrim! So what is it doing on this Dark Elf?" He pulled at the cuirass and the slender body of the elf slid out of it with ease. "It was too big for him anyway," Hauk grinned, trying it on. The fit was perfect.

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Picking up a few other useful bits and pieces and uncorking a jug of shein, Hauk settled on one of their hammocks fully intending to wait for the Morag Tong representative awake, but then falling back and falling asleep within minutes.

...

"You sleep soundly for a murderer," a quiet voice said in his ear. Hauk opened one eye and saw a face with a black hand tattoo looming over his. "Hello." Azarath Salvel smiled, picking up an unopened jug of shein and pulling up a crate to sit on. "You called?"

"Indeed," Hauk sat up, grinning. "I thought you'd be watching. I need a favour." Azarath looked up but waited for Hauk to continue. "I have to travel across Vvardenfell to the other side, and the area is filled with blighted creatures. Yet the alchemists at the Imperial Shrines or at the Mages Guild here cannot sell me any potions against the Blight Disease because they once again managed to quarrel with the Telvanni. So I was wondering..."

"Whether Morag Tong could help restore the supply lines?" Azarath looked at him shrewdly. "We can do better than that. It is high time to make that potion less of a mystery. Next time you go to an Imperial alchemist, you will find them hard at work brewing the potions to cure Blight Disease - each and every one of them will find the recipe under their pillow. The Telvanni have kept it a secret long enough."

"But not from Morag Tong," Hauk chuckled. "Thank you."

Azarath inclined his head with a smile.

"Next time just one will do," he jerked his head towards the corpses at the back of the cave. "We are watching." He got up and walked out, vanishing from view even before he reached the door.

"I'll see you later, Brother," Hauk said into the empty tunnel.

...

With the supplies of potions restored, Hauk decided to take a detour to Maar Gan where he was supposed to locate a propylon index for a mage from Caldera Mages Guild. Then he would head South, stopping in Caldera to drop off the index and finally continuing on to Balmora for a bit of rest. His guar was in good shape, and Hauk did not expect the journey to take too long.

Leaving Gnisis early in the morning, he took the road that went past a large fortress - a Dwemer building housing one of those propylon teleportation nodes. Hauk was admiring the stark architecture when suddenly...

"Damn and blast!" He was thrown off the guar with a fireball, leaving him scrambling to get back to his feet. "Damn you, madwoman!!" A woman in netch leather armour was throwing spells at him while at the same time hacking at his guar!

...

"Poor Henk," Hauk stood over his dead guar a few minutes later. "He didn't stand a chance. But that madwoman... that was some spell!" He bent over the dead woman next to the guar, trying to see whether she belonged to a cult or a tribe of some sort. Her spells were far more powerful than anything Hauk encountered so far in Morrowind.

"You killed her! Now you will die, m'wa!" Two more women of similar appearance ran downhill from the direction of the Dwemer building, each throwing those powerful spells.

"Damn you!!!" That was all that Hauk could manage, as he went down heavily, knocked out by two spells at once.

"Huh? Serves him right," the women nodded to each other, retreating.

But a true Nord never backs down, and as soon as Hauk came to, he summoned a flame atronach and went after the women. He didn't even think to recover his health first, and sure enough, he was soon knocked out again. And again. Eventually he remembered to drink a healing potion and to use stealth against these impertinent women with their overwhelming spells. Cloaked in invisibility, he took them out quietly one by one, and peace was finally restored.

Sitting by their fire to catch his breath, Hauk was looking at the Dwemer building on the hill, with its impressive architecture. It was already late morning, and without his guar, Hauk didn't feel like walking all the way to Maar Gan. "Return to Gnisis and take the silt strider from there," he thought. But Dwemer architecture was too intriguing to pass up... "Not a usual Dwemer ruin with its towers, no, this one is quite different," he thought. "I wonder what it's like inside..?"

...

"Phew! Daedra," Hauk shook his head, looking at a collection of daedra hearts, clannfear claws and scamp skins in his travel sack. He also found a key between the ribs of a skeleton, but no lock of any kind anywhere, and was wondering what that key was for. He decided to keep it on him for now. It was time to travel to Maar Gan.

...

The silt strider was rocking softly as it moved, and Hauk quickly nodded off. The incessant chatter of the silt driver was also to blame for that. Finally, he stood in Maar Gan overlooking the town from the raised silt platform. Was there a place to eat and sleep there? He wondered. Out of the corner of his eye he saw something big where nothing big was supposed to be - high in the air right behind him. Turning around, he saw a Dwemer airship.

"Whaaa--?" He wondered aloud.

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"Have you not heard? It just appeared out of thin air! No one is coming near it!" The silt driver exclaimed with excitement. "Here - even the Black Horse Courier wrote about it!"

"The Black Horse Courier wrote about something that happened in Maar Gan..?" Hauk couldn't quite believe it, but sure enough, the driver thrust an issue of Black Horse Courier at him. In all fairness, it did not mention Maar Gan, just the Dwemer airship. "...and no one has got the stones to go aboard," Hauk read. "Hmph..."

...

"Blimey, you're a tough Dwemer ghost!" Perhaps there was a reason that no one had claimed the airship so far. Hauk found himself fighting a ghostly shape of a Dwemer Sphere Centurion that was a lot stronger than similar constructs that he met in Dwemer ruins. But eventually the Centurion was defeated. "So, how do you drive this thing?" Hauk wondered, looking around.

The ship had several compartments that must have felt spacious to a dwarf, but that Hauk found rather cramped. However, the ship had everything one could want, and the bed in the Captain's quarters was certainly big enough... "Sleep here tonight and think about it tomorrow," Hauk concluded. After all, it was 2 a.m.

IPB Image

Hauk slept well and by the time he awoke, he got so used to the sounds of working machinery, that it no longer registered with him. He hopped off and went in search of the propylon index that was supposed to be found in the local Temple Shrine. The priests wouldn't hear about selling it ("How dare you, it's an offering!"), so when full of indignation they retreated into the depth of the shrine, Hauk simply took the index. "So this is why the mage didn't come for it himself - it's up to me to do the stealing," he thought, but did it anyway. No guard came to arrest him, so Hauk shrugged his shoulders and left.

He spent the rest of the day figuring out how to drive the Dwemer airship and eventually sailing to Caldera, with just a few mishaps along the way.

IPB Image

He arrived late at night, parked the ship by the Northern Gates and went into town, hoping to find an empty bed at the Fighters Guild. Why did he not sleep on the airship again? Perhaps he should have.

The Fighters Guild was buzzing with activity even late at night - no one seemed to sleep in that town. A great big yellow barricade blocked his way inside the building, but he climbed over it and got to the dormitory upstairs. There it became clear why everyone was pacing downstairs and not sleeping, even though it was already well past midnight: the beds had the worst bed bug infestation making them unusable. The source of that might have been the yellow barricade or possibly one of the beds that had all sorts of foodstuffs under the mattress...

"Stop! You violated the law! Your stolen goods are now forfeit! Pay the fine or go to jail!"

"Umm... What..?" Hauk raised his eyes to a grinning Imperial Legion soldier that nevertheless meant business. "Stolen goods? What goods?"

"Whatever you took from under that mattress," the soldier explained, looking rather unsure. "You probably don't want to eat that anyway. Hand it over. Your fine is 15 septims - are you paying it or shall I escort you to the dungeons?"

"You are going to escort me to the Fort anyway, aren't you?" Hauk handed over 15 septims with a sigh. "All right, let's go. At least I'll sleep at home tonight."

The trip to Fort Moonmoth near Balmora was remarkably swift - Hauk suspected teleportation. He paid his fine, took the opportunity to get a blessing to clear his diseases, restocked on potions against the Blight, and after a short quick march he finally reached his house in Balmora, forgetting to check whether the guards had also removed that stolen propylon index from his possessions. Perhaps it was that and not the dubious food from under the mattress at the Fighters Guild that earned him the fine. In which case he would have to return to Fort Moonmoth to get it back from the Evidence Chest...

"What a mess!" He shook his head again, opening another bottle of mead. Mead! Not shein, not mazte, not even Telvanni Bug Musk that came so handy a few times and didn't taste half bad... Mead. He'd need go see that Nord trader again. And buy another guar. And check on that propylon index. Return to Caldera. Fetch the Dwemer airship. Back to Balmora to report to Caius Cosades. Then join the Telvanni on the other side of Vvardenfell...

Hauk dreamed of lush meadows in Cyrodiil, sleeping in his chair, not having managed to get to bed.


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"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Acadian
post Oct 21 2022, 08:19 PM
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Urgh, too bad Hauk can't find potions to cure Fight like a Bosmer Blight Disease.

WooHoo! An airship! What a neat way to get around.


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Renee
post Oct 22 2022, 01:57 AM
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She's going to choose between Hauk and Lucien, huh. I hope she chooses Hauk eventually, although Lucien might get mad. :mad

Her description of her friends turning on her after she contracted vampirism... how sad. sad.gif That also is true that she wouldn't just get welcomed into some already-established coven or cult. Whoa...

She becomes mortal again, but she is OLD. indifferent.gif Yeesh. Almost like, what's the point of returning to humankind!

Up to page 8/142.
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macole
post Oct 22 2022, 04:01 AM
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“The fit was perfect.” Autofit, a skill or spell known by even the poorest tailor. There may be a seam tear now and then but for the most part big or small the garment automatically adjusts to the wearers' size. The fit is always perfect.


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Lena Wolf
post Oct 22 2022, 09:56 AM
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QUOTE(Acadian @ Oct 21 2022, 08:19 PM) *

Urgh, too bad Hauk can't find potions to cure Fight like a Bosmer Blight Disease.

I don't know whether it was meant to be like this or whether it's an oversight in Morroblivion, but the fact remains that Cure Blight Disease potions were only available from very few traders that you meet much later in game. I think they were all Telvanni, as well. indifferent.gif So Hauk had to fix this. He had enough feeling like a Bosmer. wink.gif A Bosmer minus the agility, I should add.

QUOTE(macole @ Oct 22 2022, 04:01 AM) *

“The fit was perfect.” Autofit, a skill or spell known by even the poorest tailor. There may be a seam tear now and then but for the most part big or small the garment automatically adjusts to the wearers' size. The fit is always perfect.

Oh, I think I know this spell! Doesn't the incantation go something like L-Y-C-R-A? biggrin.gif

QUOTE(Renee @ Oct 22 2022, 01:57 AM) *

She becomes mortal again, but she is OLD. indifferent.gif Yeesh. Almost like, what's the point of returning to humankind!

Yeah, that's how we felt. sad.gif The reactions of NPCs reflected her appearance, so yeah, she got cured but she didn't get restored to the way she was.


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"Innocence, my brother."

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Lena Wolf
post Nov 2 2022, 07:30 PM
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2-5 Morning Star, 4E203 - New tricks - Nebula Isles

Hauk took a day to recover from the maddening two weeks he'd been having. He found his Balmora house broken into with some things missing. Oddly enough, it was food, ingredients and alchemical equipment that vanished, while his spare weapons, gems and scrolls were untouched, as was the money that he had left in a jewellery box. Well, that house was never going to be a perfectly secure spot, but the thief sure had some strange tastes, Hauk smirked. They took only what they needed... almost like what he would have done under some circumstances... another agent, perhaps? Or an assassin?

There was no point dwelling on it though, he needed to replace the equipment and refill his stores, and then brew some poisons and potions. That took the rest of the day, and feeling tired, Hauk delayed everything else till tomorrow.

The next morning he finally remembered the ordeal with the propylon index and rummaged in his pack, only to discover it gone - it was confiscated by the guards when they arrested him. So it was that index and not the dubious food from under the mattress in the Caldera Fighters Guild that earned him that arrest. Fuming, he wondered what to do next - he needed that index, which was now stored in the Evidence chest at Fort Moonmoth, no doubt. It was becoming increasingly clear why that mage in Caldera needed help retrieving those indexes - there was nothing hard about it, no delving into dangerous ruins, but instead it required stealing, stealing and stealing. "May be I should just forget about it," Hauk wondered. But that would be admitting defeat - not something Hauk enjoyed doing. "Ok, I'll make one more attempt," he promised himself.

...

"You should be wearing your Legion uniform when talking to fellow Legionnaires," he was told when he joined the Legion in Gnisis. "Except if you outrank them, then they won't dare to contradict you," the Orc that instructed him, added with a grin. But the mission of retrieval of an illegally appropriated propylon index from an evidence chest was a sensitive one, even if he was outranking the Legionnaire guarding the chest. "Best wear my Legion cuirass," Hauk told himself, then realised that the cuirass was still in Gnisis... and he was in Balmora. "Rats," he swore. That required a trip back to Gnisis. "Well, if I'm going that way, I might as well..." he remembered a few more things he needed to do that would take him in that direction.

...

"Yes, that will do nicely," the Dwemer airship was still parked by Caldera's North Gate when Hauk got there late in the afternoon. Although he found the airship to be a little awkward to steer at first, and even drove it into rocks and got stuck in narrow ravines, he eventually figured out that the trick with such a big vessel was to go higher - above the ravines, the rocks and even the Ghostfence. "It has its uses," he nodded to himself, thinking also that it would be a much better place to store his spare Legion uniforms, too. He boarded the ship and sailed to his next destination - the house of Sjorvar Horse-Mouth, a fellow Blades agent charged with watching the smugglers. Sjorvar also had a small herd of riding guars, and Hauk needed a new guar after his old one got killed.

"Sjorvar - how goes it?" He greeted him, climbing down the rope ladder of his airship. "Met any new smugglers lately?" He grinned.

"Some," Sjorvar grinned back. "Nice ship you've got there," he grinned again. "Read about it in the papers. Appeared out of thin air, did it?"

"Something like that," Hauk nodded.

"That is peculiar," Sjorvar gave him a long look. "Seeing how there's also a new ship in Gnaar Mok. A sea faring ship, you understand. Trade with Riften via Kogotel. That isn't a new concept, but we never had such a big galley doing the smuggling before. Because why would an honest trader sail to Gnaar Mok of all places?" Sjorvar raised an eyebrow as if expecting a reply, but didn't get any. "I bet it's the manor on the Nebula Isles," he continued. "A shady business all around."

That was a lot of new information that warranted an investigation, Hauk thought. He didn't even know there was such a thing as the Nebula Isles, with or without a manor house on it. So, he bought a new guar, signaled it to follow, boarded the Dwemer airship and headed West to Gnaar Mok.

IPB Image


Arriving in Gnaar Mok, the first thing he saw was a large Imperial galley moored on the Western edge of the village. A new jetty was built especially for it, it seemed. A Dunmer wearing rich Imperial clothes, a long cutlass with a jeweled haft on his hip, was going in and out of the House Hlaalu manor just opposite the jetty. "That'll be the captain," Hauk told himself. "Do you take passengers?" He inquired.

"Indeed!" The captain beamed at him. "We sail regularly between here and Kogotel, it takes two days or so and will cost you a mere 400 septims. Interested?"

"Another time, perhaps," Hauk thanked him but made a mental note of this new connection. It could come in handy indeed. From Gnaar Mok to Kogotel, then on to Riften through the Rift Pass, and from there Skyrim was his oyster... mudcrab... whatever.

IPB Image

All this walking and talking made the time pass rather quickly, and the guar was grazing happily on the lush grass of Gnaar Mok. Hauk was about to continue on to this mysterious Nebula Isle but then thought better of it. "Wasn't there a hut around here where I could sleep?" He recalled staying in Gnaar Mok before. Indeed, the hut was still there and it was still unoccupied, and having bought some food and drink at the market, Hauk decided to delay everything else until tomorrow.

...

"Nebula Isles?" One of the locals was looking at Hauk with suspicion. "What of it?"

"I heard talk, is all," Hauk answered non-committally. "Was curious."

"It's a small group of islands just West of here," another local joined in. "No secret about it! Been there since forever."

"So how do you get there?" Hauk tried to appear slightly bored.

"You swim," the first local grinned. "Or you try to find a fisherman to ferry you over there, if you're scared of the slaughterfish in the water," he added with a smirk. Then, having taken in Hauk's Trollbone cuirass and a long claymore on his back, the local changed his tune: "We don't tend to go there, sera. Not a good place, that one." Then, making sure that the guards were out of earshot, he whispered: "It's supposed to be House Hlaalu. But it ain't anything like here. It was House Hlaalu once..." The other local swallowed hard, and neither of them said anything more on the matter.

Hauk thanked them, bought some more food and drink and decided that it was now imperative for him to investigate the Nebula Isles.

But of course he didn't intend to swim. He had an airship! Taking the guar along, Hauk boarded the ship and sailed West, turning slightly South as he saw a large manor house on a sandy island. The area was quiet and nothing seemed amiss... But Hauk's gut twisted, he sensed danger nonetheless, and it wasn't coming from the mudcrabs.

IPB Image

The place was eerie quiet with no one about. The waters were clear and warm though, the nature was peaceful - even the mudcrabs were peaceful. Hauk took some time to look around.

IPB Image

Finally, he spotted a fisherman, who didn't have anything interesting to say. The larger part of the island housed the manor, the smaller one had a cave entrance - an egg mine, Hauk thought. He started with the manor.

Entering a lavishly decorated hall, he was greeted by a well-dressed housekeeper who neither welcomed him nor stopped him, and he found it odd. She was perfectly willing to chat about the latest events and swap rumours, but she remained mute on any questions about the manor or the isles. Proceeding further into the house, Hauk found an equally lavishly decorated central hall with a roaring fire and a dinner table laid out for four. He looked closer at the food - rat meat and corpse weepings. How strange. Not touching any of it, he continued the survey of the house.

In the upper floor wing he found a large bedroom and a secure storage room with chests full of riches, yet without any locks. There was a Redguard butler outside who eyed him with suspicion but equally didn't stop him. Exploring the house further, Hauk found a richly decorated swimming pool with strangely quiet people, a shooting range on the back terrace, a zoo in the cellar... "Be careful, don't approach!" He heard someone yell when an adult kaguti, an alit and several wild guars attacked him all at once... Be careful indeed. He tried to leave, but the animals followed, so he returned to the zoo and fought on until all the animals were killed.

"Oh, finally," a Khajiit smiled at him, somehow completely unharmed. "Someone had to do that." No further explanations followed, and Hauk was getting more and more perplexed.

Then finally in the basement there was a glimpse of an answer: a Corprus stalker came from behind the crates and landed a few swipes on Hauk before Hauk could react. A vicious battle ensued, with Hauk receiving several deep wounds and getting infected with Black Heart Blight. With a sigh, he uncorked a bottle of Cure Blight Disease potion, then went through all the crates, sacks and chests in the basement. Plenty of potions, plenty of ingredients, wines and spirits were there, and not a bottle of anything to cure the Blight. What was going on?

With all the fighting and looking around, time was passing quickly, and it was already dark. Too late to explore the rest of the island, Hauk thought. He returned to the dining room with the roaring fire, not forgetting to bring something suitable to eat from the basement - he was not eating rat meat and corpse weepings laid out on the table. Making some room, he settled for a couple of kwama eggs and some dried hound meat, perhaps not his favourite, but safe enough, washing it down with mead from his pack - he didn't trust any of the drinks in that house.

IPB Image

It was already nearing midnight, and Hauk briefly considered returning to the Dwemer ship for the night, but then decided that his investigation of the Nebula Manor would not be complete unless he slept in the house. Not the safest bet perhaps, but what could possibly go wrong?

The butler in the upper wing greeted him with suspicion again but didn't stop him, and Hauk found the bedroom empty, the candles lit and the bed made, as if waiting for him. He took a deep breath and lay down.

Perhaps it was the food, the mead, the tiredness or the strange incense hanging in the air, but Hauk fell asleep immediately.

IPB Image

...

Hauk was walking through a desert. Antaloor? He remembered sandy dunes of the Savannah. No, the sand around him wasn't yellow, it was grey. It wasn't sand, it was ash.

Burned trees appeared in the distance, the soil turned black, the air darkened. The shape of a tar scorpion moved between the trees. The Swallows.

A woman screamed, then all was silent. A pale-faced man in a dark robe went past, then vanished.

"Damn the Sight," Hauk swore. The man and the woman weren't there, what Hauk was seeing, were shadows of past events - horrific, violent events that took place there many years ago, turning a lush tropical island into a wasteland known as The Swallows.

Strange gurgling noise was coming from the ground under his feet. "Vidons," Hauk thought, unsheathing his claymore, ready for battle. Beings with neither a heart nor a soul, they came through the earth, surrounding you before you could react. Several dark figures emerged, but Hauk was ready, summoning a Flame Atronach and swinging his claymore in a wide circle. One shade fell, several vanished, and the battle was over as suddenly as it began. "Strange," Hauk was looking around tensely, not quite believing it was over. "Vidons don't normally retreat." He bent over a corpse on the ground... It was grey, and instead of the usual Vidon armour, it wore a dirty loincloth. Its chest was open and strange flesh tentacles were growing from its face. Hauk jerked upright, startled. That was no Vidon.

Moving slowly through the black forest, Hauk was seeing many shades like the ones he'd just fought, but none of them attacked. They appeared, walked in an erratic pattern, stumbling between the trees and rocks, then vanished into thin air. They all had strange fleshy tentacles growing from their faces, and some had a hole in the chest where the heart should have been.

"They aren't here," Hauk realised. "It is my Sight. These are Corprus victims from times past, perhaps from the time of the last Nerevarine," he realised. "But that one stalker was real. Corprus is back." That, of course, he already knew. What he didn't know, was where he was and how to get out of there.

"I went to sleep in that luxurious bed in the Nebula Manor," he recalled. "Perhaps it was a foolish idea."


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"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Acadian
post Nov 2 2022, 11:57 PM
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Still liking that airship. And now Hauk has a guar mascot/copilot. Of course, it took bumping a few rocks to figure out how to fly that thing. tongue.gif

Nebula Isles? What a mysterious (and rather bizarre) place. I'm hoping he is just in a dream at the end there. . . .


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Lena Wolf
post Nov 3 2022, 07:20 PM
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8 Morning Star, 4E203 - A naked Nord

"This one's already been done!" A coarse voice said in Hauk's ear. "Is he one of us?"

"He can't be and he isn't," another coarse voice replied from further away. "Have you been drinking again?"

"No, Master, I swear!" Some thuds followed, some muted screams and some pleas, then finally all was quiet again.

"He's been done, he says," the second coarse voice said in Hauk's ear. "He can't have been, they just brought him in three days ago..."

Sharp pain in Hauk's eye knocked him out.

...

"Well, well, the sleeper awakes!" Hauk opened his eyes and saw himself lying on a cot in an ash cave, surrounded by people with blistered and festering skin. Some had strange bumps on their faces. "Hello." A tall Nord helped him up. "Haven't we met before?"

"Hlormar?" Hauk noted that the Nord was still naked. "What's going on?"

"Bloody witches!" He swore and spit. "That witch - she didn't just take my stuff, she infected me with something... Corpsus whatever... Now look at these sores!"

"Corprus?" Hauk gave him a long look. "The witch did that?" He shuddered, remembering that he too had touched that witch. "But what are you doing here?"

"When the sores started to appear, no one would talk to me any more," Hlormar explained. "Then one priest told me there was a clinic on the Nebula Isles. I came here, they keep promising me the cure, but the sores are only getting worse, and now these strange bumps on my face appeared..." Hlormar looked worried. "I know I'm not the brightest Nord around, but d'you think they're lying to me?"

"I think they are," Hauk nodded. "We need to get out of here. Somehow."

Hauk looked around. People in different degrees of decomposition were stumbling along the cave tunnels, tentacles of varied lengths were growing from their faces, they were shedding flakes of some hard resin... Suddenly, a dark shape appeared among them, taller than any of them, it had a long sword, it grabbed one of the stumbling people, pushed the head back, thrust his sword into the person's chest, carving a large hole in it. He extracted the heart and dropped the rest of the flesh on the ground. The heart was beating in his hand, he lifted it and vanished. There was no blood, and the victim with a hole in his chest continued stumbling around like before... Did he even notice what just happened? The others certainly did - they rushed to pick up those bits of discarded flesh and devoured it on the spot as if they were starving...

"What was that!?" Hauk exclaimed in horror.

"What was what?" Hlormar looked at him, raising an eyebrow. The cave tunnels were quiet, there was no rush for the discarded bits of flesh, there was no person with a hole in his chest... "Are you one of them? A Seer?" He squinted at Hauk.

"One of whom?" Hauk squinted back.

"You must be," Hlormar was still squinting with suspicion, but then shook his head and smiled. "Don't worry - I don't want to know, really. What were you saying about getting out of here? Do you also know how to cure this Corpsus disease?"

Hauk didn't have any answers. A shock bolt came out of nowhere and knocked him out.

...

"Honourable Master, I have a disturbing report," Dagoth Oryn bowed. "The Nord that had been brought in three days ago - he had already been done."

"What..? How?" Dagoth Bahryn sat up, the tentacles on his face shaking.

"Yes, Master," Oryn took a step back. "We were hoping your wisdom would enlighten us..." he bowed again, the trunk on his face reaching down below his knees. "We examined his eye - it isn't Our Lord's creation... Yet it works..."

"Nonsense!" Bahryn croaked. "Show me!" He clapped his hands and the slaves brought in Hauk, unconscious on a stretcher, setting him down onto a large slab - an altar or an operating table. Dagoth Oryn and Dagoth Bahryn bent over him.

Dagoth Oryn opened the eyelids around Hauk's right eye. "Look - this isn't his own eye," he said cautiously. At first glance, the eye looked normal, but Dagoth Bahryn cast a spell, and it revealed magic inside it.

"How do you know it works?" He asked.

"He's seen the sacrifice today," Oryn answered with worry.

"Then who is he?" The two tentacled men left Hauk alone and moved to a large desk on the other side of the room. "A new Nerevarine..?"

...

Wake up, Nord, for you have been chosen.

A powerful voice echoed in Hauk's head, bringing him out of his blackout.

"Get out, Azura," he grunted. "I am not your Nerevarine."

Azura did not answer, and Hauk sat up, finding himself back in the ash cave. He spotted Hlormar in the far end of another cavern, going through some crates. "Looking for a potion to cure his Corprus, no doubt," Hauk thought. Leaving Hlormar to his rummaging, Hauk decided to have a better look around the caves. He wanted his armour and his blade back, too, but somehow knew they would not be there. They were probably left behind "...in the cursed Nebula Manor!" Hauk slapped his forehead. Of course, he took off his gear before going to bed. Finally looking down to see what he was wearing, he realised that his state of undress wasn't far from Hlormar's - or from any of the other people, for that matter. He just had a pair of linen trousers on, and had no weapons or armour.

...

Hauk realised that the best way to move in that cave was to emulate the others - to stumble from place to place, rolling his eyes as if in a trance. The others did seem to be in a real trance, however, but Hauk was looking for a way out. People with trunks growing from their faces were walking purposefully here and there, usually followed by people without faces wearing wrist irons. "Ash slaves", Hauk thought. He was clearly in a Dagoth stronghold. The Corprus victims "lived" there, with the term used loosely, as their minds had been all but gone already. "They are soldiers or cattle, as the need arises," Hauk guessed. "This is a breeding pool... They release them from time to time to spread the disease and stage a panic somewhere. Hlormar... he will turn into one of them unless I get him cured!" He suddenly realised and jerked upright, momentarily attracting attention of one of the people with trunks on their faces. Hauk caught himself and returned to rolling his eyes and stumbling.

Finally, he noticed a door at the end of a long corridor. It was dark and seemed not in use. He pushed the door - it wasn't locked. "Lucky or just the opposite," he braced himself for the unknown.

...

"Welcome, welcome!" A richly dressed Khajiit stood on the other side of the door. The room was dimly lit with red lanterns, making that extra illumination around the front of the room more noticeable. "It's been a while since we've had the pleasure to welcome a Nord! This way please!" He waved amicably, inviting Hauk to follow. It was a corridor, so Hauk didn't have much choice. "Here, you won't be needing these..." the Khajiit grinned, cutting the belts on Hauk's garments and removing them in one motion. "This way - take the central stage!" He nudged Hauk forward, then pushed him, gently at first, with the claws out afterwards, making Hauk step up onto a well-lit stage. Music was playing and the girls on the neighbouring stages were dancing to the tune. Hauk's head felt heavy - there was something in the air...

...

Hauk woke up on a large luxurious bed. His head was spinning. He sat up - he was in the same room in the Nebula Manor where he went to sleep previously. Stains on the sheets told him what took place there. A young well-groomed Imperial was snoring gently on the bed next to him, but hearing Hauk move about, he woke up. "Hello," he smiled. "They've finally delivered!" He clicked his tongue. "I'll have you every time."

The speed with which Hauk jumped out of bed, grabbed his gear, pulled it on and ran out of the room, surprised even him. "A breeding pool indeed!" He spit, remembering the ash caves. "They either make you into a Corprus stalker or into a slave of a different kind!"

Finally he stood outside, and the warm humid air and gentle sunshine calmed him a bit. He remembered Hlormar. "I cannot just leave him there," he shook his head. "I need to find those ash caves and get him out," he decided. "It must be here somewhere - they carried me around, didn't they?"

He spotted his guar grazing on the meadow, and his airship, still hovering by the shore. For a moment, he had the urge to jump aboard and sail away - as far away from those cursed isles as possible, preferably forgetting the events of the last few days, or at least of last night... But the image of Hlormar rose before his eyes, and he sighed and turned back to look for the entrance into the ash caves that had to be there somewhere. "The path to the Wastes of Oblivion is paved with best intentions," he told himself. He didn't know how to cure Corprus, he heard there was no cure, since that wasn't a disease like any other - it was a magical affliction created by Dagoth Ur himself. It wasn't something you could catch easily, either. He hoped that what Hlormar had, was "only" the Black Heart Blight.



~~~~~~~~
Acadian - Nebula Isles is a real place in Morroblivion! (And Morrowind, of course.) But it gave me a different impression than what the author intended, I think.


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"What is life's greatest illusion?"
"Innocence, my brother."

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Lena Wolf
post Nov 7 2022, 02:07 AM
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The pics are in... It appears that some people at Club Dagoth were taking snapshots. But what happens in Club Dagoth, stays in Club Dagoth. Mostly.

How's the line-up tonight?

Boys, you've got to try harder!

Yeah, may be... Which one though?

Can I buy you a drink?

That's the spirit!

And who is this?

Not another naked Nord!

Just to be clear: these are NOT poses! These are actual screenshots of an actual game. Nothing staged. It's a part of a mod I made that plays the story told in the last two posts. Plus of course the saving of Hlormar which Hauk is about to start.

This post has been edited by Lena Wolf: Nov 7 2022, 01:53 PM


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Acadian
post Nov 7 2022, 09:15 PM
Post #439


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What a confusing place! Nebula Isles seems like it could be a joint endeavor run by Sanguine and Peryite. Yet Azura whispers is Hauk's ear.

I'd be thinking about jumping back on that airship too!


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Lena Wolf
post Nov 7 2022, 09:30 PM
Post #440


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I know! Club Dagoth is insane! And all the customers are old hand modders... Like Tel Shadow, the author of the original Nebula Isles... tongue.gif But it's Club Dagoth, so the Sixth House - the baddies of Morrowind. All I did is added the caves underground, which is only logical. Well, and a few twists to help the story along. tongue.gif


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