By dankempster 2 Comments
Day Sixteen - Finding Lost Books and Lost Words
I rose this morning with my next course of action already in mind - to head for Halldir's Cairn, just west of Falkreath, and retrieve Runil's missing journal. Although the Altmer had left a clear mark of its location on my map, I had not counted on the fact it would be nestled so deep in the Jerall Mountains, and the climb to the cave's mouth was much steeper than I'd expected. I entered the cave to find a grisly sight - three men, bandits judging by their garb, had met their end beside a cairn that was emanating some kind of energy into a room above. A nearby journal revealed the story behind their fates - the men, named Agrius, Raen and Vidgrod, had intended to use the cave as a base of operations, but had been manipulated by the spirit of Halldir into sacrificing themselves that he might live again. Beside the journal was a key which unlocked the door leading deeper into Halldir's crypt. Steeling myself, I pressed on.
The crypt, as I've come to expect from these locations, was full of Draugr, but also populated by enemies I hadn't encountered before - spectral ghosts. I was a little worried my Skyforge steel sword might pass right through them, but it did not. Perhaps Eorlund's forging techniques have imbued the metal with some special property beyond its strength.In the room directly above the entrance I came face to face with Halldir himself. Seemingly irritated by my unexpected visit, he split himself into three separate spirits and began his assault. He put up a good fight, and I was forced to fall back on my stock of potions more than once, but eventually he fell. I retrieved Runil's journal from a nearby treasure chest, and retraced my steps back to the cave's entrance. Whatever enchantment Halldir had placed on the cairn was now broken.
Runil seemed ecstatic to have his journal back when I returned it to him in the Dead Man's Drink. He thanked me with a payment of seven hundred and fifty gold coins. Before leaving town, I decided to stop by the local trader at Gray Pine Goods and fill my coffers even further by palming off some of the things I'd picked up at Halldir's Cairn. At some point while trading with the proprietor, an amiable Nord named Solaf, I made the decision to follow up my unknown correspondent's tip and visit Bonestrewn Crest. The route I plotted took me east from Falkreath and across the northern face of the Jerall Mountains, through Helgen and skirting past Riften as it passed through the Rift and into Eastmarch.
After the events at Mount Anthor just over a week ago, I went to Bonestrewn Crest expecting to find myself fighting a dragon. What I hadn't expected was to find myself facing two of them. As I passed into Eastmarch and began heading north from Mistwatch towards the Crest, a pair of the gigantic brutes met above me in flight, as if conspiring to cut out the sun. Both ice-breathers, their attacks sapped me of my strength and made the fight incredibly challenging. More than once, I wished that Barbas had still been at my side, supporting me in this seemingly impossible battle.
Even now, I could not tell you how I managed to overcome that pair of dragons at Bonestrewn Crest. I can only put it down to a mixture of perseverance and luck - either that, or the Gods themselves conspired to guide my sword and find their most vulnerable points. When the rush of adrenaline eventually subsided, I found myself standing between the overbearing skeletons of two dragons, their souls now nestled within my own, and myself feeling only a few breaths from Sovngarde. I gulped down several potions as I surged towards the top of the Crest, and sure enough, there was another Wall of Power. The now-familiar sensation came over me once more as I ran my hand over the runes, and I stepped away feeling the power of yet another Thu'um revealing itself to me - Frost Breath.
With the night fast approaching and the dragon battle taking its toll on me, I decided to use what little energy I still had to drag myself to nearby Riften. I was aware of the city's less-than-stellar reputation, but in my current state that did not matter to me - I simply needed a bed to rest in, and an ill-bought bed would serve just as well as any other. The guard's at Riften's city gates tried to extract a 'gate tax' from me as I arrived, but I saw through their ruse and managed to persuade them to let me pass without charge. Shady-looking individuals tried to grab my attention as I moved through the city, but I paid them no heed. After what felt like an era, I finally reached the door of the Bee and Barb inn. I practically fell through the door, and was able to hold my eyes open just long enough to rent a room for the night and write this entry. Now I plan collapse into the bed my septims have bought me, and not open my eyes until late tomorrow morning. Until then,
- Day Fifteen - The Axe and the Masque
- Day Fourteen - A Daedra and His Dog
- Day Thirteen - Treason and Betrayal
- Day Twelve - Counsel from the Greybeards
- Day Eleven - Old Towns, New Faces
- Day Ten - New Thu'um, New House
- Day Nine - Retrieving the Star
- Day Eight - Azura's Champion
- Day Seven - Wuuthrad and Werewolves
- Day Six - Kynareth's Will Be Done?
- Day Five - The Companions and the Sleeping Tree
- Day Four - Duelling With a Dragon
- Day Three - The Bandit, the Wife and Her Lover
- Day Two - The Golden Claw
- Day One - Escape from Helgen
- Day Zero - Here Begins My Journal