I’m back in Whiterun, staying at The Bannered Mare, with the missing books in my satchel.
The journey from Winerhold back to Whiterun Hold was mostly uneventful. The wildlife is still irksome at times, and I ran across a group of goblins that wanted to eat me, but all in all it was better than the trip north.
I got some things done on the way south as well. The first was to make a small detour to fetch a staff for Enthir, a Bosmer at the college who can be good to be owed a favour from. Of course, the favour won’t be owed yet, because the reason I’m getting him the staff is to get an amulet from him, an amulet that another apprentice, Onmund, traded him. So it will be Onmund that owes me a favour this time. The mages that had the staff no longer has the staff.
The second detour was more getting rid of an annoyance than something I had planned. A group of bandits had moved into an old fort along the road and were attacking anyone that travelled past the fort. Stupidly, they attacked me.
Urag, the librarian at the College, had told me that the apprentice that had run away with the books I was looking for had holed up in Fellglow Keep, east of Whiterun. Instead of heading into the city to spend the night, I decided on getting as close as I could to Fellglow before night fell and find a nice spot to make camp. I came across a shrine to Talos in the hills near the keep, and, deciding that it was probably one of the safest places I could find at the time, I made camp there, making my offering before I did so. However, it wasn’t actually a safe place to stay.
|'Take no prisoners'|
I had barely unsaddled Allie before I was attacked. Two agents of the Thalmor came upon the shrine, and as soon as they spotted me, they charged. I don’t think they expected any real resistance, though. I dispatched them quickly enough, and tracing their path to see if there were more of them around, I found the bodies of several Nords, apparently farmers. As I searched the Thalmor for any valuables, I came across a letter from one Elenwen, with instructions to kill any Talos worshippers they came across.
Now, Talos is very important to us Nords. When he was a man, he was named Tiber Septim, the man that conquered all of Tamrial and founded the Empire. And he was a Nord, so what are the Thalmor up to? I had heard about them banning people revering Talos in the south, but I always thought it but a rumour. Now it seems like it is actually true, and they kill Talos worshippers? In Skyrim? Do they actually want a war?
My plan to get hold of the missing books was to try and gain access to Fellglow Keep and get them back by threats or bribery, but that was not to happen: The mages that held the keep attacked me on sight. Stupid. Ylva’s getting powerful, you know. Still, even if I’m learning more and more about magic, I am also learning more and more about human nature. In the cellars of the keep I almost gagged on the stench of death and decay. They had vampires in cages, they used them as target practice, and there were a lot of other corpses there as well, some in rags, some in workers drab, and a few dressed in armour. I also found Orthorn, the apprentice that took the books from the college, in one of the cells. Taking pity on him, I agreed to release him if he helped me get the books back. He proved to be useful for a short time, but he wasn’t of much help, to be honest. He did keep some of the keep’s necromancers busy before they took him, though, so I guess credit where credit’s due.
|The ritual chamber in Fellglow Keep|
And I did find the books, in a ritual chamber. What that woman was trying to summon, I do not know, but I am glad I arrived when I did. Blood, flesh and pierced hearts adorned the summoning circle, and she did actually hold up against me for some time before I killed her, so she obviously knew some powerful magic. So, having gotten the books (and cleaned out the keep of any books and valuables I could find), I decided to go to Whiterun before heading back to the college. Strangely, though, I didn’t, not at first. I knew that Whiterun was west of the keep, but somehow I kept going north. I didn’t even notice until Allie started complaining about the snow, and by the time she did, I had come upon a dragon. So that’s three.
Now I only need some rest before heading back north to the College. I’ll spend the day perusing the books to see if I can’t find some clues on how to get to the power in that orb.
I’ve been thinking about power. I can’t get the memory of that cellar out of my head. Not sure I’m willing to pay a price as high as that.
|The price of power...|