Sunday, December 18, 2011

Not the best of days...

I had always wanted to be a mage.

My parents were both mages. Lived as mages, died as mages. I've always wanted to be like them. Except the dying part.

Looks like things aren't going how I wanted.

When my parents died in the Great War fighting the Thalmor in High Rock, I was left with my grandfather. Kind old man, a shopkeeper. No mage himself, he couldn't teach me, no matter how much he wanted to. Most of the more magical places of learning in our homeland were either destroyed in the war, or far too expensive for someone like us to afford. My determination was fierce, despite all this, so it was decided that, when I was old enough to handle the journey on my own, I would go to the College of Winterhold, in far-away Skyrim: prestigious, ancient, and best of all, without tuition. 

The time came, and I left home, well-prepared for whatever I might come across - which shouldn't have been much, honestly. Even the Forsworn don't cause trouble for Bretons on the High Rock side of the border with Skyrim.

Or they don't, if they don't find out you're going to "join the Nords." They "deposited" all of my equipment, gold, and even clothes ("For when you come back," they said), and sent me off in rags (though, honestly, that's more than they usually wear).

I made it to Skyrim, despite my miserable state, only to walk into an Imperial ambush for the Stromcloak rebels. Despite my protests (do I look like an armored rebel?), they kept me with them, marching me off to wherever. Eventually we met up with a caravan, and I fell asleep for the first time in gods-know how long.

When I wake up, who do I find sitting next to me? None other than Ulfric Stormcloak, the leader of the rebellion. I knew then that I was in real trouble.

Our little caravan stopped right at the feet of the headsman. Nice little town, called Helgen. I wasn't on the list of prisoners. That should have been the end of it right there - nobody does bureaucracy like the Empire - but I suppose the captain didn't like my face or something, and they just put me right on their list.

There weren't even two dozen of us there, but one of those Stromcloaks was getting impatient. He wanted it over with quick, and he got what he wanted.

Even though I wasn't even on the list, I was next. And so here I am. They weren't kidding about the whole life-flashing-before-the-eyes thing. Those Imperials don't waste any time; they didn't even take the last guy's head out of the basket. Definitely not going to get all of them in there...wait, what was that?

I guess I'm just seeing things. Sure heard something though. But I suppose that's what happens when you are about to lose your head.

WHAT IS THAT?! I know I'm not the only one seeing this, right?

That's...that's just impossible. There is no way...well, whatever that is, it gave me - and those Stormcloak guys - a way out. They say this here tower is safe...

...or not. That was a solid wall, without any fire coming out at all.

So now to leap out of that hole, onto a burning house, and then onto the ground, all while my hands are still bound.

Now the Imperials are trying to save me. Me and everyone else. They seem to be a bit smarter than those Stormcloaks, at least. Even through several close calls, we are managing to escape somehow.

I somehow know that...thing' Odd.

Eventually I see the remaining Stormcloaks escaping, the Imperials too busy fighting the beast and saving people to deal with them. One of the rebels bids me to come with him, but I think I'll stay with this soldier that has been defending me the whole time (happens to be the same one that tried to get me out of this in the beginning).

When we get inside the barracks, Hadvar loosens my bands and tells me to grab some equipment. Now I'm an Imperial soldier, or at least look like one. I was never too good with swords and armor and the like, to be honest. Luckily I know a few spells that can help out here.

Very quickly we find some Stormcloaks that had the same ideas we did.

I guess rebels don't reason well. Spectral wolves bite just as hard as normal ones.

We come to the torture chamber. Lots of dead guys here. One of them happened to be a mage, and I take his robe and spellbook, seeing's how he doesn't use them anymore. Much better than that armor.

They build the prison/torture chamber right up against a cave. Seems that would be an easy route of escape. Spiders, Stormcloaks, and even a bear. Between Hadvar's sword and my magics, we make short work of them all, and eventually find an exit.

Hadvar says he has an uncle in a nearby town called Riverwood, and that I should talk to this man. However, he tells me to split up. So he heads north to said town, and I head south. I guess I'll find his uncle later.

Now I am all alone, in a foreign land, with only the stuff I've taken from my dead enemies. Fortunately, there just happen to be some elk right in front of me.

I'm not good with a bow either, but electricity and fire that spew forth from my hands, that I can do. Even has a hide I can make into leather, I guess.

Keep on walking, and find more fauna. This one doesn't run away; in fact, quite the opposite.

Same outcome though.

I'm on the road, but I haven't seen anybody. But now in front of me is some sort of gate or bridge, and there are a couple of people.

I've heard there's a lot of bandits about, what with the instability of the civil war and all. I'm going to be cautious here.

Looks like I was probably right to be. Those rocks are definitely there to fall, so everybody dies. Still, maybe they're guards or soldiers or something. I go and talk to one, but he just yells at me and attacks me. Looks like bandits. No trouble killing them and taking their stuff.

Just as I hop down there, the rocks fall. Looks like those bandits were waiting for those soldiers there.

I know how that guy feels.

I try on the armor I just got. My robes are good for magic, but not for protecting. This stuff is better than the Imperial stuff, and enables a lot more freedom. I figured as much, as it's made for this country.

It's warmer than it looks. But only a little.

Up ahead there's some sort of structure on the side of the mountain. I think I'll go explore...

BY ARKAY WHAT IS THAT? It just jumped out of that coffin! And it starts to attack me. So I...uh...kill it. Make it more dead. Or whatever, but at least it is more appropriately inanimate.

Oh, I remember now. It's a draugr. Exceptionally well-preserved Nord warriors. Why it suddenly came back to life and started slashing at me, I don't know.

Turns out it's not the only undead thing up here. There are a few skeletons waking around (again, why?). They are a lot more fragile than they seem, and are easy to take down. There's even a treasure chest outside here, with some weapons.

A true barbarian. But it's cold and windy.

If I recall right, that would be Falkreath. But that's for later. If everything I've ever read is true, then this place has loot, and loot means money. And money means I can get a place to sleep, and clothes and stuff.

Lots of skeletons and stuff inside. A few more of those draugr. Even a vampire or two. That master vampire was pretty tough, but they don't like fire and electricity any more than elk.

But there's more behind the vampire.

That guy seems scarier than the rest. And what is this...chanting?

Well, I send that fellow to a more eternal rest. That wall though...just calls to me. What weird writing. And is one of those words...glowing?

And all of a sudden, I learn what that word means. It's powerful. I think. Well, I know. Don't know how I know though.

It's getting late, and it's been a busy day. So now I'm going to that town, Falkreath. On the way I spot a watchtower. All's dark on the bottom, but I think I see a light on the top. Very odd. I know it's late, but I'm going up there.

Well, look at that. A necromancer with a dead Khajiit lady. Who, upon my arival, he raises as a zombie. Not that it did him much good, as he died within seconds. And the zombie turns to powder.

I wouldn't have any problems with necromancers if it weren't for that. Arkay says bodies need burial, and I follow all the Nine Divines. (Yes, that's right, Nine. Stormcloaks have that one thing right, at least. I don't care if the Thalmor get upset, I'm still worshiping Talos.) Still, Arkay has nothing against looting bodies, and I get a nice dress out of that dust (and the necromancer's robe is nice too, except for that skull - not formal wear, that). Also, this necromancer has some reading materials.

I don't mind the daedra, but I don't know about that kind of stuff.

OK, now for sure to town. Just as I walk into Falkreath (at 3.45AM), it starts raining. Swell. But there are still a lot of people going about town. There's this old guy:

He thinks there's an Imperial plot against him, since he was a Stormcloak sympathizer. He wants me to break into someone's house and get a letter for him, as he thinks that person is an Imperial spy. I tell him I don't have time for his paranoid delusions at this hour, and he calls me a milk drinker! I never!

Finally, an inn. "Dead Man's Drink"? Sounds inviting.

...That's nice.

Rooms are 10 septims a night. Sounds good. But she shows me to a room with some gloomy guy in it. His name is Mathies, and his daughter was just killed. Some fellow by the name of Sindig apparently tore the poor girl to pieces. That sounds rather odd; I'll check out this Sindig tomorrow. It's 5.30AM now, and Mathies is still here - I'm sleeping in my clothes.

I hate Morndas.

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