A war and a walk

Turdas, 25th Hearthfire, 4E 201

After waking, I continued to sit next to the sleeping Rigmor for another hour. Sorella had risen about half an hour ago and joined Angi outside. I heard Baa’Ren-Dar’s voice, so I took one more look at Rigmor and then entered the main room.

Baa’Ren was talking to Sethri, who was still in his underwear.

Sethri saw me and said, “Vayu, Casius and Yngol will join us soon, Wulf.”

As he said that, Vayu entered, and I greeted my old friend.

Vayu grabbed a chair from the other table and then sat with us.

  • Wulf: How is the planning going, Vayu?
  • Vayu: I can only comment on Skyrim’s preparations, which are going well. General Tullius is a tactical genius, and Legate Rikke has learnt much from him. They know how to make a controlled withdrawal look like a panicked but slow route.
  • Baa’Ren: General Tullius has quickly adapted to the rapid movement of Vayu and Khajiit. Orders that usually take weeks or days to arrive are delivered in minutes. Getting feedback from His Imperial Majesty has aided the General, who sometimes waits months for correspondence.
  • Wulf: Sethri, why are you sitting there, half-naked?
  • Sethri: What’s wrong? I am wearing underwear.
  • Baa’Ren-Dar: You would do well to make yourself decent. There are ladies in the house and a child!
  • Sethri: Whoa, there! We don’t all have a massive mansion in Torval. It’s the heat.
  • Wulf: Sethri, you are an Ashlander, and it is nowhere near as hot as your homeland! It may be your farm, but Imperial laws against indecent exposure exist! Put some clothes on! If Sorella glimpses your green and hairy dangly bits, I will feed them to a Slaughterfish.
  • Vayu: Wulf does not make idol threats, Sethri.
  • Sethri: Oh, okay.
  • Wulf: I spoke to Silah last night. She expects The New Order to make landfall by the end of today.
  • Sethri: They could be here anytime soon.
  • Wulf: Disembarking an entire army is not a quick exercise, and it is many days of a forced march from there to Whiterun. We have plenty of time, Sethri.
  • Sethri: I am glad you are relaxed about this. But, if you don’t mind, I will continue my anxiety.
  • Wulf: What about you, Baa’Ren-Dar? Do you have news from Cyrodiil and The Dominion?
  • Baa’Ren-Dar: Our allies are ready to pounce. Once the invasion starts, countermeasures will be taken. At the right time, The Dominion will strike on the Isle. Once The New Order land in Skyrim, Mede will feign troop movements north to expose the Southern Army and crush them on the border of Cyrodiil.
  • Wulf: Surely, they know their scheme will fail? They can’t be so stupid that they think we will be fooled. I suppose they are hoping that Aedriath will succeed in Skyrim. We will squash him like a bug underfoot. I hope he survives the battle so I can slowly throttle him.
  • Vayu: They never stood a chance once you closed that Oblivion Gate.
  • Wulf: I don’t think they stood much chance with a God-King’s help. However, much loss of life and damage would occur while he roamed Nirn.
  • Vayu: Yngol is chatting with Angi. Celestine told me a romance was brewing.
  • Wulf: Have Celestine and the others returned to Aurane?
  • Vayu: Yes, Erandur’s squad has taken over guard duty.
  • Baa’Ren: Casius is talking to Hashire.
  • Vayu: He was having difficulty with teleportation and dragons, and now a unicorn makes him question his sanity.
  • Wulf: Wait till Meeko says hello. He will be convinced he has lost his marbles.
  • Baa’Ren: Lost marbles?
  • Wulf: When somebody has lost their marbles, they are insane.

Casius and Yngol entered the house and made their way to the table.

  • Wulf: Good morning, Legate Casius and General Yngol.
  • Casius: Good morning, General Wulf. Yngol, Vayu and I thought it wise to discuss the coming invasion.
  • Wulf: Are the troops content with my promotion?
  • Casius: The powers to be have decided we need a neutral commander in Skyrim.
  • Yngol: You got the short straw.
  • Casius: You are Thane of several Holds and thus a Skyrim and Imperial citizen of high nobility. You are also The Dragonborn who recently saved everybody from Alduin. Hence, nobody objected to His Imperial Majesty making you a General of The Imperial Legion. His Imperial Majesty proclaimed a senior Priest of The Nine received advice from Lord Talos that this be done. Therefore, there have been no objections from the Imperial Troops.
  • Vayu: Except for Legate Adventus. He had been mercilessly ribbed after you took him down a few pegs, Wulf.
  • Yngol: There have been no objections from Ulfric or any other Stormcloak. However, your armour generated a lot of questions yesterday.
  • Wulf: That is why I wore it, Yngol. I want Stormcloaks to know I will fight for The Empire. I want them to question why I will do so if I am Champion of The Divines and Talos is the Ninth Divine. I will tell all I have discovered about Ulfric, and he will find the numbers willing to die for his greed and ambition significantly reduced. But we are not here to discuss the civil war. We have The New Order to eliminate.
  • Vayu: Casius and Yngol, do you agree with our tactical assessment discussed with General Tullius and Legate Rikke?
  • Casius: Yes.
  • Yngol: Yes.
  • Wulf: So that I have some clarity and maybe learn something, can you tell me how you arrived at that assessment?
  • Yngol: The number of ships and their size suggests we will be outnumbered, so we must choose our ground wisely.
  • Casius: The swamps around Hjaalmarch are not suited to Legion tactics. We would become bogged down. The mud would kill us.
  • Wulf: A detachment of Argonian would have come in handy!
  • Yngol: The New Order have only a few options open to them. They will avoid Solitude and Windhelm and go for broke.
  • Casius: We all agreed that in Aedriath’s position, we would avoid a lengthy siege. He doesn’t even know if the Southern Army Group will advance in good time.
  • Wulf: Mede’s forces will crush it.
  • Casius: A suppressing force on the Pale border and one at Dragon Bridge will effectively cut off Solitude and Windhelm.
  • Wulf: A blockade of those cities is logical and predictable. They will head straight for Whiterun as virtually every other invader has done. The odd exception has caught Skyrim off guard.
  • Yngol: Yeah, Aedriath has to get his army to Whiterun as soon as possible.
  • Wulf: If Whiterun falls, many will lose their lives there. Many more will lose their lives as the war drags on. We mustn’t let it fall! We have many days to prepare, and Aedriath’s forces will be whittled down as they travel.
  • Vayu: Everybody knows, Wulf, that our priority is reducing damage and loss of life. We will do our best, but innocents will be killed.
  • Sethri: Aedriath will protect his flank.
  • Baa’Ren-Dar: Sethri, do as Dragonborn told you and put some clothes on!
  • Sethri: With a small force.

Sethri lifted his arse off his seat and farted.

Baa’Ren-Dar growled and stared at me.

Then he left the room disgusted with the whole thing.

Yngol and Casius laughed. Vayu’s anger rose. I found it childish, unfunny, and disrespectful.

  • Vayu: Show some fucking respect! I just told Wulf we could expect innocents to die, and you thought it was a grand time to act a child.
  • Wulf: Sethri, get out of here if you can’t contribute anything useful!
  • Vayu: Can you imagine the mess we would be in without Baa’Ren-Dar’s contacts and diplomatic skills?
  • Sethri: As you wish. I’ll get dressed.

I watched Sethri leave, which gave Vayu and me time to calm our tempers somewhat.

  • Wulf: Now that idiocy is out of the way, we can return to saving lives. We must wait to see if Aedriath makes a beeline for Whiterun. I am optimistic he will do that for two reasons. It is the logical thing to do, and Rigmor had a vision that the battle was there.
  • Yngol: Vision?
  • Wulf: Yes, Yngol. Some of us have foresight. You don’t have to understand it to accept it.
  • Vayu: Baa’Ren-Dar uses seers quite often. It has given him an edge in the world of diplomacy.
  • Wulf: Casius, we must wait till the last second to move your troops to Whiterun. The dragons will keep Vayu aware of troop positions, and he will tell you when to move. If we move your troops too early, Aedriath may choose another target.
  • Casius: During the battle, the walls of Whiterun will protect our right flank. Aedriath will have no choice but to come for us once we are in position. We will draw his main force onto our chosen ground and remove the serpent’s head.
  • Wulf: Yngol, I want your force to start moving towards Whiterun and bivouac about a day’s march away. You, too, will have to wait for orders to advance on Whiterun. Your angle of approach should avoid any run-in with New Order forces.
  • Yngol: During the battle, we shall make an impenetrable shield wall. That will allow us to slowly advance and outflank them on their left while Cassius pins them down. We can use the Whiterun garrison to boost my numbers.
  • Wulf: No troops from Whiterun will be needed. They are to remain to defend Whiterun if we fail. We shall ask The Companions to defend the walls of Whiterun. After all, it would not break their neutrality. Ri’saad’s caravan will also defend Whiterun’s walls.
  • Yngol: Vayu says mages will kill The New Order’s officers.
  • Wulf: Yes, the dragons will tell us where they are. Then Vayu and other mages will teleport in, cast fire, ice and lightning onto the unfortunate officers, and teleport away. I want the same done to any catapults and trebuchets.
  • Vayu: We have used these tactics to significant effect in Akavir.
  • Wulf: Any Wizards will also be eliminated, although I doubt that they have many of those. They tend to be very loyal to The Dominion.
  • Casius: How many of Aedriath’s troops will make it to Whiterun?
  • Vayu: A decent number will arrive, but they will be exhausted. Aedriath will force march all the way.
  • Wulf: The weather is going to be stormy and pouring rain. Aedriath’s archers will be severely hampered. Depending on how he places his troops, there is a good chance that we will be the attackers.
  • Casius: How do you know the weather will be stormy?
  • Wulf: Rigmor’s premonition. And if it is not as miserable as I hope, I will make it so.
  • Vayu: Wulf can change the weather. He learned the spells from The Psijic Order.
  • Wulf: We are deliberately sacrificing ground. To minimise civilian losses, we must know the path Aedriath will use. What was the consensus amongst the War Council?
  • Casius: There are two options open for him. He can come through the mountain pass at Labyrinthian or across the plains via Dragon Bridge.
  • Wulf: We have the Imperial Camp on the Pale border and Stormcloak Camp not far outside Windhelm, which ensures Aedriath will avoid that area or risk being bogged down in a lengthy campaign. He will have no choice but to attack Whiterun, even if he knows we are camped outside.
  • Yngol: Yes, he must rush and attack Whiterun.
  • Vayu: I think Morthal is vulnerable.
  • Wulf: Then send some reinforcements but remember, we want to delay, not get involved in major battles. The Penitus Oculatus in Dragon Bridge could also do with some additional troops.
  • Vayu: It will be done.
  • Wulf: Fort Greymoor was attacked by a large bandit gang yesterday and suffered many casualties. I want the current company strengthened and another sent to boost the garrison.
  • Vayu: It will be done. Many Legionnaires entrenched in a fort at the rear of the battlefield will give Aedriath nightmares.
  • Yngol: How is Rigmor?
  • Wulf: Not well, Yngol.
  • Casius: Yngol says her speech was equal to any Ragnar did.
  • Wulf: It was impressive, and I couldn’t have been more proud.
  • Yngol: You shamed The Sons of Talos, Wulf. They will fight.
  • Wulf: Everything is set in motion, and I am not crucial at any stage in The New Order’s military defeat. However, I will endeavour to be at the battle for Whiterun. The Divines have asked me to investigate a problem with Solstheim. I will leave for that island after spending time with Rigmor. I hope to aid her recovery once more. With teleportation, I can return to Skyrim when needed. I will check several times per day to ascertain the situation.
  • Casius: What is happening in Solstheim?
  • Wulf: Another Dragonborn, Miraak, enslaves the people of Solstheim. I need to investigate, determine his motivation, and decide what needs to be done. He may pose a threat to all the people of Nirn.
  • Yngol: How serious a threat?
  • Vayu: Dragonborn, like Wulf and Miraak, can misuse the immense power of the Thu’um. For instance, they could disable The Liminal Barrier. Do you know what that is?
  • Yngol: Sorry, that was not in the curriculum at military school.
  • Vayu: The Liminal Barrier prevents Daedric Princes from manifesting on Nirn.
  • Yngol: I know how much destruction and death their roaming on Nirn caused.
  • Wulf: Miraak’s motives are unknown. Yes, Dragonborn can create chaos, but there has never been a rogue one. The Greybeards can destroy Nirn, so the Thu’um is deliberately made difficult to master for ordinary mortals.
  • Casius: We understand the urgency, Wulf, and you must do what is needed as Champion of The Divines. Vayu and those in Castle Dour have good plans and strategies in place. Their communication with senior officers in the field has been far superior than I have experienced before.
  • Yngol: And they have been willing to listen to Casius and me, even though Tullius’ hand strays to his sword while glaring at me.
  • Vayu: If you two are ready, I shall return you to your garrisons.
  • Yngol: Casius and Vayu, we need to discuss some logistics issues.
  • Vayu: Silah will always be up to date with what is happening.
  • Wulf: I will speak to her twice daily, but it must be in Skyrim. It is too dangerous for her in Solstheim.
  • Vayu: I will join you outside in a minute. Wulf and I have other business to attend to.

Casius and Yngol left the room. Vayu remained seated.

He asked, “What have you told Yngol about Ulfric?”

“Nothing, except to ask if Ulfric has ever proven that Lord Talos wants him to fight in his name.”


“I told him I would fight the Stormcloaks and kill Ulfric.”

“I don’t think Yngol will remain a soldier after Whiterun. He will undoubtedly be talking to Angi while waiting for me.”

“Although I can forgive, I can never forget who turned against The Empire. If you are going to start a civil war, you should make sure your cause is just. Not a single Priest or Priestess of The Nine has supported Ulfric’s claim he fights for the right to worship Talos. But not all follow that traitor for that reason. Many are Mer haters and think we should have kept fighting The Great War. They see The White-Gold Concordat as an act of cowardice. I only looked around briefly in The Hall of Valour and saw Nord heroes that are nothing more than mass murderers and butchers. That is the type of mentality that Ulfric has attracted.”

“If Rigmor does fight at Whiterun, Celestine, Lydia, Iona, and Jordis will be by her side.”

“If there is a mage in the squad here and one with me in Solstheim, that might reduce how effective your hunting of officers might be.”

“Arch-Mage Savos contacted General Tullius and asked if The College of Winterhold could aid in defence of Skyrim. Tullius spoke to me, and I visited Savos. Half a dozen Masters of Destruction will boost our numbers. A couple of Imperial Battlemages will also assist. The amount of damage we shall be able to inflict in a short amount of time will be impressive. Anybody promoted to command will find other soldiers leaving a wide berth around them.”

“Let us hope we have some rest after The New Order and civil war are dealt with.”

“Do not let what is happening here distract you in Solstheim. Another Dragonborn could be the deadliest opponent you have yet faced.”

As I checked on Rigmor, Vayu replaced the chair and said hello to Sigunn.

Rigmor was deep in sleep, and no dreams disturbed her. I retrieved a dress and shoes from my Journal Case and placed them on the chair.

I heard Vayu exit just before I entered the main room.

Sigunn asked, “Is Rigmor still asleep?”

“Yes. Rigmor’s body is still dealing with the concoction. What she had to do yesterday evening exhausted her mentally and physically.”

“I will sit with her so someone is close when she wakes.”

“I have left a nice dress and some shoes on the chair. The riding outfit needs a good clean.”

As Sigunn headed for her daughter, I exited to a sunny day. I saw Valdimar, Rayya, Gregor and Kogo sitting in the stables.

I walked over to Meeko.

“Stop picking on Svinnr. She was bred to be small.”


“Yes, it is rude to pick on somebody else about their size, weight, or anything else.”


“I agree. Svinnr is a nice name and suits her.”


“Okay, I understand you didn’t mean to be rude.”

I gave Meeko a scratch behind the ear and stroked Svinnr’s mane before approaching Rayya.

“Good morning, Rayya.”

“It is a fine morning, Wulf. How is Rigmor?”

“She was progressing well, but then she did a speech in front of The Sons of Talos veterans. I objected to it but left it up to Rigmor to decide. It has reversed some of the progress made.”


“Rigmor thinks she has let her father down and not lived up to the son and warrior he wanted.”

“Oh, is that to do with her memory loss?”

“Partly. I think Rigmor has always felt guilty for not protecting her family from The Thalmor as a fourteen-year-old girl.”

“Her father would not have expected her to. And from what I have heard, Ragnar surrendered without a fight.”

“Yes, it is illogical. But it is holding Rigmor back from a full recovery.”

“So, how are you going to help her?”

“Rigmor needs to be reminded that Ragnar loved his little girl and did not wish for her to be a son. There are memories yet to be unlocked that will convince her of that fact.”

“Do you have a plan to achieve their unlocking?”

“Yes, and part of the plan is a trip to Riften. Relaxing and allowing Rigmor to talk about things has proven beneficial so far. I will accompany her to Riften without armour or weapon. I don’t want to remind her about war and battles.”

“The men are grumbling already about roughing it. I think they are too soft after months in Aurane. I quite like the change and will ignore their whining.”

“Well, I had better speak to the whingers, or they might cry.”

I walked over to the three, and they looked miserable.

  • Wulf: Why the long face, Kogo? This barn is luxury compared to some of the mudholes we slept in! Not to mention Akavir mosquitoes are so giant they snatch babies out of their mother’s arms.
  • Kogo: Those mudholes were not dull, as each time we tried to sleep in one, we knew we would be in a battle and fighting for our lives the next day. Here, I am already bored.
  • Wulf: Oh, you poor thing. Of course, in Aurane, the big comfy beds with silk sheets and thick blankets ward off boredom due to a dweomer I call Spoiled.
  • Valdimar: At least I can look forward to surprise attacks on the enemy.
  • Wulf: A lot of you will be involved in the delaying tactics. Celestine and the ladies will be returning here in a couple of days.
  • Gregor: Vayu told us you are going to Solstheim to deal with a rogue Dragonborn.
  • Wulf: His name is Miraak, and he has been a guest of Hermaeus Mora since The Dragon War.
  • Erandur: That is over thirty-five centuries!
  • Gregor: I bet he got a lot of reading done.
  • Erandur: If you try really hard, Gregor, you may finish ABCs for Barbarians one day.
  • Gregor: Erandur, you prove that too much knowledge makes you ugly.
  • Kogo: You hear that, Wulf? You must be the ugliest bastard on Nirn!
  • Gregor: Oh, um, well, there are exceptions to the rule.
  • Wulf: I don’t know much of what is happening in Solstheim, except that Miraak uses the Thu’um and The All-Maker Stones to ensorcel people and makes them build things.

Valminoor was guarding the farm and bellowed, “Wulf, come and have a quick tinvaak!”

Valminoor would land too close to the farmhouse and Angi’s crops. I rushed over, pointed to somewhere safer for the house and occupants, and said, “Over there, or Angi will put an arrow in your head!”

Valminoor landed with a thump and turned around as I approached. I could see no signs of the wounds that Odahviing had inflicted.

“It is good to see you, old friend. We haven’t caught up since leaving Akavir.”

“Yes, well, things got hectic once Alduin arrived, and then Odahviing beat the crap out of me. After that, I was a miserable bastard full of self-pity and embarrassment.”

“I can’t see the wounds that caused that unwarranted embarrassment. Nobody expects other dragons to defeat Odahviing in battle. You fought well and should be proud.”

“Nahfahlaar repaired the scars with a balm he created. He would not disclose its components.”

“There has never been a vainer Dovah than Nahfahlaar. The slightest imperfection on a single scale causes him tremendous anxiety. Therefore, I am not surprised he spent time inventing such a balm.”

“He also helped me come to terms with my loss to Odahviing. He pointed out that a mortal with a sword once defeated him, yet he is still smiling. We don’t smile, but you get the gist of his comparison.”

‘Yes, I do, and it is a valid comparison. So, Valminoor, we can soon waste time discussing esoteric knowledge.”

“Are there topics I should study to ensure the tinvaak is long and pointless?”

“I have been reading tomes concerning The Liminal Barrier. One claimed that the transluminal passage of quickened objects or entities without hyper-agonal media’s persistent agency is impossible.”

“Ahh, yes, I know that theory. If you were to try, the transported referents would be instantly retransmitted.”

“I say that is poppycock and that the hyper-agonal media is not required.”

“I shall study the subject to defend the hypothesis that hyper-agonal media is required.”

“I also acquired the book, ‘Tsaesci Creation Myth.’ I challenge you to interpret its allegorical references and translate it to Tamrielic.”

“Give me an example of its content.”

“Okay, a rough translation, without changing the symbolic references, is, ‘There was the Biting, which broke the twelve worlds and their name-eggs, and the Biters chewed new names of the lesser serpents until soon death was known to the smallest and your alphabets disappeared, but ours did not. The state of rest became worthy of blame. However, it was segmented, so heat was wasted across the right eye. And in mercy, we gave you language that was dead yet walking if you used it, which you did, though transient food forms became problematic.”

“What a load of mumbo jumbo! I accept that worthy challenge!”

“That is one of the more coherent paragraphs.”

“I shall return to scouting, and you may want to speak to Rigmor, who exited the house while we spoke. She headed for the bench next to the lake.”

Valminoor lifted.

He then started flying random patterns covering his area of responsibility.

I walked to Hashire, and we spoke telepathically.

I asked, “Did you enjoy your talk with Casius?”

“Sort of. Once Casius got over the fact I was talking into his mind and I was a unicorn, he didn’t shut up.”

“Did he tell you one of his war stories?”

“Yes, and it went on and on and on, and I was tempted to bite him.”

“I think we might ride horses in Solstheim. How does that sound?”

“I have never been there, so it should be interesting. Make sure we see a lot of it before you get killed.”

“Oh, of course. It would be rude of me otherwise.”

I decided to speak to Baa’Ren-Dar before approaching Rigmor with my idea. He was sitting on the patio.

I said, “As a fellow devotee of Azura, Sethri shows little respect for you, Baa’Ren-Dar.”

“Khajiit thinks Sethri dislikes wealth. Many people associate wealth with corruption, but Khajiit and Dragonborn are proof that is an invalid generalisation. But Sethri is good of heart if a bit crude at times.”

“Rigmor is much improved but also plagued with doubt. She feels unworthy and thinks she has let her father down. No logic or love seems to be able to erase those thoughts.”

“Ragnar trained her to be the son he never had. That has made her think she failed to protect Sigunn and her father.”

“But he did not want her to be a son at the expense of being a daughter. Rigmor thinks that as a fourteen-year-old girl, she should have been able to protect her parents from the events that occurred.”

“Only hate and revenge fuelled Rigmor until recently. Now Sigunn is safe, Rigmor wonders about her father’s love.”

“She needs something to remind her of Ragnar’s love for his daughter. His love for the little girl she once was. I think I know what that reminder might be.

“It should be something from before his murder. Sigunn has mentioned something from Rigmor’s childhood, perhaps?”

“Yes, something made with her father’s love. A simple doll that I could also make. It does not have to be identical but close enough to jog her memory. When travelling The Void, I was shown this doll by an entity whose avatar was a girl child. Rigmor has had recurring premonitions with what I assume is the same girl child in them.”

“Dragonborn has no idea of entity’s identity?”

“No idea at all. Lord Talos did not think it was an Aedra as they are vulnerable in The Void. There are many gods unknown to The Nine and Daedric Princes.”

“Do not worry, Dragonborn. Rigmor will be fine. Just give her time. Go and speak to Sigunn.”

“I can’t help but worry, Baa’Ren-Dar.”

When I entered the farmhouse, Sigunn was busy stirring the cooking pot.

She turned as she heard me approach.

“I just talked to Rigmor. She said she had something important to discuss, but not until she sorts things out.”

“I know what it is. However, I should leave the discussion to Rigmor. It is family business.”


“Sigunn, remember you told me about Ragnar making a doll for Rigmor?”

“Yes, the one she gave to her little friend. Why are you asking?”

“Baa’Ren-Dar and I think Rigmor needs a reminder of Ragnar’s love. It may jog the last of her memories. She remembers the love of you and Baa’Ren-Dar and others but not her father’s.”

“It was just a piece of old doweling with a sackcloth dress and string hair.”

“Yellow hair, red smile, round black eyes and Rigmor called it Jenny.”

“Yes, that’s correct.”

“Thank you, Sigunn. I will visit Riften to see if I can pick up the necessary things to make a new Jenny. I will ask Rigmor if she wants to come.”

“Rigmor has always wanted to shop at Riften market.”

“We couldn’t last time we visited Riften.”

“I hope this will all be over one day so I can take her home. Maybe we can start over and live a normal life. I hope you will be part of it. Rigmor adores you.”

“Sigunn, I can divulge a part of what Rigmor wants to discuss. His Imperial Highness is to reinstate your family’s noble status. Ragnar will no longer be blamed for the Brena River Massacre. The official histories will tell the true story of his heroic deeds and sacrifices.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes, Sigunn. Ser Ragnar Fjonasson’s name will be again placed in The Book of Lists, and you can legally use his coat of arms and your titles. I hope this news pleases you, Lady Frostraver of Rielle.”

Sigunn’s tears flowed as I headed downstairs and changed into clothes purchased from Radiant Rayment in Solitude.

I made my way to the lake, and Rigmor seemed calm as she watched the swans.

When I got close, Rigmor said, “Sit down, Wulf, and join me in some infinity staring for a few minutes.”

I laughed and then did as I was told. However, I knew my beloved was staring at me, not the lake.

After a few minutes, Rigmor asked, “Okay, why aren’t you wearing armour or a weapon?”

“I thought I would try and match your splendour. Do you like the dress and shoes?”

“Yes, very much so, and thank you.”

“Well, my nose came up with the idea. The riding outfit needed a wash.”

“Haha. Sorella ran over to say hello, and she loved my new dress. She likes the farm and being here.”

“She is a wonderful child.”

“Did she tell you the tragic story of her bath?”

“Yeah, I bet Angi and Sigunn have scratches, if not bites on them!”

“She follows Angi around like a lost little puppy. I’m so pleased for her.”

“I am pleased for both of them. I think Angi adored her from the second she saw her.”

“Wulf, in your journal, you wrote about a fight in Dead Man’s Drink in Falkreath. You wrote that it involved some Imperial soldiers boasting of raping a young woman in Helgen and killing her family. I know that is what happened to Angi. Were they the ones that did it?”

“I wasn’t sure if you knew that Angi was raped. But I suppose if she were going to tell anybody, it would be you.”

“Yeah, and I suspected she never did get revenge on those bastards.”

“She was not too pleased I found out the truth. One of them had kept Angi’s necklace as a souvenir. When I gave the necklace to Angi, she became distraught. I told her she had nothing to be ashamed of and that I wouldn’t say anything to anybody about it.”

“I have seen Angi holding something tight and crying. Now I know what it is.”

“The necklace probably brings back terrible memories. It is best to let Angi tackle them by herself unless she asks for help.”

“That was clever of the bard to sing The Dragonborn Song to stir up the locals.”

“Most of them were already fuming. I was humbled by how many risked their lives and how quickly the enemies were dispatched.”

“What do The New Order think will happen? Will they conquer a couple of cities, and the people of Skyrim surrender? Nincompoops!”

“Sigunn seems happy, but she did cry when I told her about Ragnar’s titles and reputation being restored. I didn’t tell her about Mede’s offer or your Mede heritage.”

“I will make an effort to talk to her about it soon. But Mum should be happy. After all, you saved her, right?”

“We saved her, Rigmor.”

“Pfft. Whatever!”

“No, I will not have you belittle what you have accomplished, Lady Ragnarsdottier.”

“She’s still hurting and misses Dad.”

“Sigunn told me she was tempted to give up sometimes as it would allow her to see Ragnar again in Aetherius. But then she thought of her little girl, which gave her the will to live.”

“Yeah, I suppose I was still treated like a little girl, even at fourteen.”

“I swear if Casius or Yngol call you a child again, I will bite them!”

“Yanno, it can take many years for some people to recover from such a loss. I miss Dad too.”

“I miss Mother terribly, and I know she is alive. If you have loving parents like yours, I don’t think you would ever stop missing them.”

“Mum loses herself in chores to keep herself busy.”

“Have you talked to her about her time enslaved and your separation?”

“No, but we have had little time to talk. It is kinda weird looking for Mum all that time, and after finding her, circumstance has kept us apart.”

“That is why I brought you back here after Yngol’s camp. You and Sigunn deserve some quiet mum-and-daughter time.”

“I don’t know if we could talk about our enslavement. Some say there are things you don’t need to discuss.”

“And there are circumstances that will make you want to talk about those things. Just be ready for that, Rigmor. Old wounds could be ripped open!”

“Are you speaking from experience?”

“Yes, I have had friends who have hidden their past from others and then found the need to talk. It is traumatic but also healing for them. Then you say to yourself, ‘That explains their behaviour!’.”

“Like my piecemeal telling of my past. You didn’t fully understand my moods till I finished the last chapter.”

“That is how you needed to proceed.”

“Maybe Mum will move on and find someone else.”

“And you would be okay with that?”

“Why shouldn’t I be? I want Mum to be happy.”

“I am not saying you should have a problem. However, don’t be surprised if Ragnar is the only one for her and she never remarries. Mind you, Sethri has been looking at Sigunn with a strange look in his eyes.”

“No! Wulf, oh the gods. Hahaha! No!”

“I was only kidding. Sigunn called him obnoxious, so I don’t think you have anything to worry about.”

“He is rather smelly.”

“Sethri seems jealous of Baa’Ren-Dar’s wealth. Can you tell me about his estate in Torval?”

“Oh my, it is huge! As you know, the province is split into two factions. Baa’Ren-Dar made a lot of money in business and was appointed an emissary of Pelletine. Baa’Ren-Dar’s estate is in Torval, which sits on the western edge of the Tenmar Forest.”

“I bet it was humid!”

“Yes, quite humid but also damp with the rich canopy. If you travel north, it gradually changes into a desert. However, inside the walls of Baa’Ren-Dar’s estate were huge gardens of imported plants, flowers, and trees. Some of which I have never seen anywhere else, not even in Valenwood.”

“I would love to see a Graht-Oak, the walking trees that Bosmer build cities upon.”

“So would I, Wulf!”

“Both halves of Elsweyr are provinces of The Dominion, yet they respected your diplomatic immunity.”

“The Dominion didn’t want to mess around. They feared that there would be trouble if the two halves united.”

“Elsweyr reunification will only happen if a new Mane is born. And then only if they could keep the Mane a secret till maturity. The Dominion would tear apart Elsweyr to find the Mane and kill him immediately.”

“Baa’Ren-Dar told me The Dominion couldn’t afford another rebellion. Not after Hammerfell.”

“If Elsweyr were to rebel, Valenwood would take advantage of the stretched Dominion resources and rebel. Elsweyr would follow Valenwood into rebellion for the same reason. I doubt either would rejoin The Empire. We don’t have a Tiber Septim on the throne, and even when Father ruled, he did things he regrets that alienated the peoples of those nations.”

“Maybe they need a Wulf Septim on The Ruby Throne?”

“Ahh, it is not on my list of things I want to do.”

“Haha! I can’t imagine you running The Empire. Well, I can, but weirdness would prevail!”

“You came outside when I was talking to Valminoor.”

“He is quite a handsome dragon. Were you pleased he had recovered from his shame?”

“Extremely pleased. You would not have had much time to get into that dress and have breakfast before coming outside. So, I think you had a Sweetroll for breakfast.”

“Yeah, Mum brought one into the bedroom for me to eat in bed.”

“And you dare accuse me of being weird?”

“I have seen some of your friends in Aurane eat a Sweetroll for breakfast.”

“You contaminated them.”


“Baa’Ren told me you were not well when you arrived in Torval.”

“It was quite weird, which you are an expert in. It felt like my head was exploding. Although it was quiet, I couldn’t talk for some time. It seemed like a thousand people all talking and shouting in my head simultaneously.”

“Baa’Ren said it was six months before you said anything to him. He said he found you in his library one day and hasn’t been able to shut you up since!”

“Ha de haha. I had been visiting Baa-Ren’s library for some time, and slowly, the noise in my head began to fade, and I could hear again. I read a lot of his books. Some of the poetry and books of proverbs helped me. Then I could finally speak to Baa’Ren-Dar and thank him for what he did.”

“Then you trained him to obey!”

“Yeah, nothing was off the table. I just had to ask, and it was there.”

“Did you use your batting eyelids and poor puppy eyes to train his staff?”

“Those are reserved for my underlings, like you.”

“Yes, Milady.”

“All the people who worked at Baa’Ren-Dar’s estate couldn’t be more helpful. Don’t get me wrong. I had to do things for myself. Izzy, Baa’Ren-Dar’s maid, took great care of me when I arrived.”

“What was her Ta’agra name?”


“The Dra honorific means Izzy is considered wise. It can also mean elderly or matriarch.”

“Wow, I never knew that. It shows how much about the Khajiiti I learned while in Torval. Haha!”

“I can imagine you were almost like a baby.”

“Yes. I couldn’t move for weeks when I arrived. Izzy washed and cleaned me, anointed me, and fed me. I would cry with the pain, and she would cry with me. Have you ever seen a Khajiit cry, Wulf?”

“No, I have been spared that experience. You know how much I admire the Khajiiti, but I have a warped sense of their lives from what I see with Ri’saad’s caravans. They are people who take life as it comes and who find joy in living. Seeing one cry would shatter that illusion. I will tell you about the first Khajiit I met one day.”

“I was like a baby when you took me to your house.”

“Rose and Celestine had to do everything Izzy did for you. That is why we ran out of clean undies.”

“Hehe…that was a good tantrum!”

“I was just so pleased to see you standing and yelling that I didn’t care.”

“Baa’Ren-Dar likes Izzy.”

“As in, likes her?”

“Yeah! Hahaha. She used to have him running around for her. Hahaha. I remember when I was in the gardens collecting flowers and wild roots. Baa’Ren came running by, covered in water and muttering, ‘Oh, hmmm.’ I looked up, and Izzy was waving at me with the biggest grin on her face.”

“Why did Izzy pour water on poor Baa’Ren?”

“I asked her, ‘Hey, Izzy, what’s up?’ Izzy replied, ‘That one is too hot. Purring and sniffing. Izzy cooled frisky Khajiit!’”

“I can’t imagine Baa’Ren-Dar trying to seduce his maid, never mind sniffing like she was on heat like a house cat! And purring? Oh, hang on, I can imagine it!”

I laughed out loud, which made Rigmor smile and laugh.

After a few seconds, Rigmor continued, “Oh my! And do you know what?”

“Let me guess. Baa’Ren-Dar was already trained and embarrassed, so he said nothing.”

“Yep. Baa’Ren-Dar never said anything. It was as if nothing happened.”

“Imagine if Baa’Ren-Dar got his wicked way, and you walked in on them?”

“Oh my! Nope, I shall remove that image from my mind! You bastard, Wulf!”

“Is it my fault your mind creates such depraved images?”

“In all seriousness, I miss Izzy so much.”

“You and I will visit Baa’Ren in Torval no matter what shit gets in our way!”

“I was going to suggest that. I am glad you have learnt to think like your mistress.”

“Yes, Milady.”

“I wonder what Rose is doing now?”

“She is a determined woman, Rigmor. She had to be to escape Fort Black. She wanted to open an inn on the Gold Coast.”

“That is why you gave her all those gems.”

“Yes, and I hope to return them to her one day.”

“Oh, I remember. You found the gems at Fort Black and put them in your Journal Case.”

“Yes. The gems were with your father’s sword and the Daedric Amulet of Talos. Father has my sense of humour and laughed long and hard when I told him of the Daedric Amulet.”

“I owe my life to Rose, Celestine and you. I hope one day to pay Rose back in some way.”

“I would guess that seeing you healthy and thriving would be all the payment Rose would need.”

“Those bastards chased me to the cliff, and I thought, ‘Shit, this is becoming a habit!’ I just launched myself into the tree, and I don’t remember much after that.”

“What? No flapping of arms in a last-ditch effort to fly?”

“Hahaha! Maybe I did but can’t remember?”

“Several trees broke your fall and a few bones. It dented your armour and mashed up your insides. The old scar from your accidental fall was reopened.”

“Did you ever see the scar I got from that fall?”

“Rigmor, I have seen and kissed every inch of you.”

“Hehe. Yeah, you have, and that reminds me. Can you please get rid of your beard? It kept tickling my thighs!”

“How about I keep trimming and trying until it doesn’t tickle anymore?”

“That is the best plan you have ever had, my Guardian.”

“Speaking of plans, I am visiting Riften today. Would you do me the honour of accompanying me?”

“Can we visit the market?”

“Yes, it will be a special trip to Riften so you can shop. I will stand there, pretending to be interested, when, in fact, my brain has turned off with boredom. No matter how unpleasant, that is a solemn duty of any male.”

“Hey, I would love that!”

“I will not take weapons with me.”


“To show we can enjoy life without bristling with instruments designed to end life.”

“Are we riding or walking?”

“That is up to you. It is about ten miles if we cross the nearby bridge.”

Rigmor ran towards the bridge and stopped. She was planning something and had a look of mischief in her eyes.

I walked to her, trying not to show I suspected something daft.

I asked, “Is there a problem, Rigmor?”

“Yanno, it’s a beautiful day, so I want to walk to Riften.”

“I agree. We should head towards the bridge, only about a mile away. The other direction wouldn’t be as interesting a walk.”

“I want to go the interesting way, but why bother with the bridge?”

“I hope you are not thinking what I think you are thinking!”

“Come on, Wulf, where’s your sense of adventure?”

“Don’t complain if a Slaughterfish takes a toe!”

“Haha. Come on. I’ll race you to the other side!”

As Rigmor ran towards the water, I Blinked to the other side.

Rigmor swam quite well, considering she wore shoes and a dress.

I tried not to smile when she reached shore and walked with squelching sounds towards me.

Rigmor stopped and stared at me with her hand on her hip.

I could hold it in no longer and laughed.

Try as she might, Rigmor could not hide the traitorous smile.

“You, my dear Rigmor, look like a very colourful wet Skeever.”

“I do not, and you cheated!”

“Oh, I can’t remember any rule against Blinking being mentioned. If it were banned, I would have run across the top of the water. If you had mentioned that it was also against the rules, I would have used Whirlwind Sprint. However, if you also banned that, I would have resorted to Slow Time.”

“Luckily, I love you enough to forgive your devious cheating!”

I used a bit of Magicka and dried Rigmor in seconds.

I said, “Now, my no longer drippy beloved, no running ahead. I am not carrying a weapon, and many wild animals are in these woods.”

“Wulf, is Kyne’s Peace in effect?”



Rigmor turned and ran.

I jogged behind Rigmor, and her laughter drifted back to me. It was the song of a Nereid, what some people called sirens, and I would follow it to my death.

Rigmor stopped by the lake.

She was staring at a wolf that had come to drink.

Flamingos walked nearby in confidence knowing the wolf was not hunting.

As the wolf walked away, I asked, “What are you thinking, my beloved?”

“You tell people that the gods have limited powers on Nirn. So, why does Lady Kynareth seem to have so much power?”

“Kyne helped design the early animals from which all others evolved. To control the early animal life and make them migrate, etcetera, she needed a conduit to them. Lady Azura uses Black Diamonds as a conduit. Lady Kyne uses the air, which includes the winds, as the conduit to control the animals. Speech is possible because air vibrates part of our throats. That is why Lady Kyne is the Divine associated with The Thu’um.”

“That, my dear Dragonborn, was some of the most sensible gobblygook you have ever told me.”

“Oh, I must have got it wrong then.”

Rigmor laughed once more and resumed our journey at a more leisurely pace.

A large boar watched us approach. As we did so, Rigmor observed, “Look at the leaves on the Aspen trees, Wulf. They look like the richest person on Nirn has stacked all his gold into huge piles!”

“I thought you would have something to say about the Rift’s Aspen trees but couldn’t imagine what. Then you say something wonderful like that, and I will never think of them the same way.”

“Yanno, reading all those poems and learning literature from Mum makes these descriptions pop into my head.”

“Maybe, but they are your wonderful descriptions, making them the bestest!”

“I don’t think bestest is a word, Wulf.”

“There is no need to be a literary snob!”

When we were closer to the fascinated boar, my light mood vanished.

I turned to Rigmor and whispered, “There are assassins on the bridge looking for me.”

“I see three strange people. Who are they?”

“I mentioned them in my journals. I called them Miraak’s morons.”

“What are you going to do?”

“Go invisible, listen to them and then assassinate the assassins.”

“You don’t have a weapon or armour!”

“I don’t need them.”

“Okay. I will wait and talk to the boar. He is kinda cute.”

“You are going to bore the boar?”


I made myself invisible and prepared Chain Lightning. I didn’t want to use my Thu’um as innocents far away might be hurt. It also advertises my presence for many miles.

I trailed the three of them for several seconds, but they were silent, and I got tired of the game.

Lightening bounced back and forth between them till they died.

I checked their bodies, and like the first ones I had encountered, they had orders which read,

Sail aboard the vessel Northern Maiden docked at Raven Rock. Take it to Windhelm, then begin your search. Kill the False Dragonborn known as Wulf before he reaches Solstheim.

Return with word of your success, and Miraak shall be most pleased.”

It was a subordinate, and not Miraak, who issued those orders.

I made myself visible and then worked hard to return a smile to my face. I had hoped to spend time with Rigmor that did not include violence.

I called Rigmor’s name as I walked over the bridge.

Rigmor passed me without pausing and asked, “Are they dead?”



Rigmor stopped before the corpses came into view.

She turned to me and said, “Ah, it is so beautiful here. Come sit on that log with me and talk for a while.”

I followed Rigmor to a log and sat next to her.

Rigmor asked me, “Do you want to keep walking to Riften?”

“Yes, Rigmor. I hoped to get through another day without killing, but that was not to be. However, I doubt we will encounter any more dangers this close to Riften. I will not let some idiot in Solstheim and his Goons ruin this day!”

“Is this what your life is going to be like?”

“Yes, it is what our life will be like if we are together. The more I protect the people of Nirn, the more enemies I will make.”

“Wulf, I promise you, I will be with you forever. Maybe, one day, I can pick up a sword again. Then I could help you instead of standing and watching you fight for your life.”

“I never want you to touch another sword until you are ready, if ever.”

“I love you, Wulf. Never forget that.”

I turned to my beloved and said, “You are right; it is gorgeous here. Soon you will be able to return to Cyrodiil. Are you looking forward to that?”

“Yes, but it’s freezing in the mountains! We could never have afforded to live in The Imperial City, Chorrol or Cheydinhal. Leyawin was too far south. When I was a little girl, we kids would sneak out of the city’s walls and head south into The Great Forest. The trees were so huge, Wulf! The mist would rise from the ground in the mornings or towards the evening. It has an amazing, mystical feel about it.”

“Like around here. I like the muted atmosphere when the mist is thick. It captivates me and is fodder for my imagination.”

“I know what you mean. At times, we were sure we could see faces in the trees and were worried they would come to life at any moment. Hahaha. We would scare ourselves and just run and run.”

“That sounds so wonderful!”

“My dad, he would come and look for us. He would blow a Nordic Horn, and we knew it was time to go home. With a smile, he would wait for me and slowly jog back to our house. I would try and race him, but I could never catch up, no matter how fast I ran. I would be so scared he would scold me, but he never did.”

Rigmor’s tears threatened as memories assailed her.

I said, “You must miss him so much.”

Rigmor replied with years of bitterness in her voice, “And then it all turned to crap!”

Rigmor abruptly stood and said, “Come on, Wulf. Let’s get going.”

We hadn’t gone far when Rigmor asked, “How come you have been trailing me most of the way?”

“Well, I am letting you dictate where we go and stop and continue.”

“You’re not staring at my arse, are you?”

“That cute wriggly bum trying hard to escape that dress? Nope, never noticed it.”



Rigmor walked a wide birth around the corpses. I should have burnt them or dragged them into the long grass.

Rigmor said as we walked, “Yanno, I enjoyed long walks as a kid. We would remove our shoes to feel the ground under our feet as soon as we got out of Bruma, away from the snow. We would never go too far down into the valley, where the lake was, but we would make dens and treehouses. As soon as I saw Riften, I fell in love with it. It reminds me of my home, not Bruma, but yanno, the forests and stuff.”

“Did you have a favourite spot?”

“Yeah. There was this really tall tree, and we made ladders to get to this huge thick branch near the top. We would shimmy along the branch and look out over The Great Forest and could even see The Imperial City and White-Gold Tower. Near that tree was a clearing full of flowers and deer and rabbits. A small waterfall fell into a pond. I don’t think it was big enough to be called a lake. The pond was full of frogs. We would catch them, have a good look because they were all sorts of colours, and gently put them back. It was as if gods had designed a place to make a child’s imagination go wild. It was as far as we would travel because wolves lived in the deeper forest nearby. The thought of wolves made the place a bit scary, which added to the fun.”

“I look forward to seeing your favourite childhood haunts.”

“And I can’t wait to show you.”

“I might be stuck here for some time dealing with the civil war.”

“I know, but we shall deal with whatever comes, my dear Dragonborn.”

A bit further on, Rigmor stopped next to some red mountain flowers. She turned to me with a concerned look on her face.

Rigmor said, “A long walk like this helps me focus and blow out the cobwebs. Believe me. I’m trying Wulf. I’m trying.”

“Perhaps another reminder of things past will help?”

“Oh, such as?”

I stepped forward, grabbed Rigmor’s hands and kissed them.

She giggled and said, “Oh, our visits to the lookout.”

“Yes, but with extras.”

I lifted Rigmor, and we kissed.

Then I kissed between her breasts.

She gasped and asked, “Would anybody see us if we knocked boots in the long grass?”

“I have no doubt they would hear us.”

“Well then, don’t you dare…”

Rigmor’s objections were smothered as I kissed her while grabbing her behind.

I then lifted the giggling Rigmor once more, and she stroked my hair as I held her tight.

She whispered, “I know you must stay in Skyrim when I return to Cyrodiil. It will be hard for us both, but perhaps it is the best while I establish myself. I need to be able to handle things when you are not around.”

“You will be very busy at first, Rigmor. But once you have established your rules and routines, you should have plenty of leisure time.”

“I will probably have to visit Mede!”

“I am sure there are advisors on the protocol. Probably that old tutor, Freathof. And don’t worry about farting in His Imperial Majesty’s presence. They will smell like roses, remember?”

“Ha de haha.”

“And just think of our reunion! I must remember to wear something you can easily tear off.”

“We had better keep walking before we lose control and scare the flamingos.”

I placed Rigmor back on her feet.

I told her, “It doesn’t matter how long it takes to fix this last bit of your memory. You have done remarkably well! If you want, all that is left is to wait for me to return from crushing The New Order. Then I can take you home.”

“I hope His Imperial Majesty keeps my Mede blood a secret. It was not good to keep its existence from me, but it would cause complications if others knew.”

“I had to explain that to Malesam. I hope he is better at politics than he has demonstrated.”

“He can always be replaced if I whine loud enough.”

“I could probably hear one of your whines from here.”

“Would it ruin the walk if I kicked you in the privates?”

“As I said, settling in Bruma will take some time. Apart from seeing Mede, you will need to do lots of visiting and endear yourself to the other ‘nobles’ of the Imperial Court.”

“How will we say goodbye?”

“I don’t know, Rigmor. We will….”

“Deal with the problem when it occurs.”

“Ha! You say you have trained me. I think it is the other way around.”

“Come along, my Batman.”

“Yes, Mistress.”

Rigmor walked and giggled, and I watched her rear end jiggle.

A while later, I said, “Roasted.”

Then I said, “A hard choice between braised and grilled.”

Rigmor laughed and said, “Wolf, stop thinking about duck recipes.”

“One of them was a waterfowl. Yummy with crispy roast potatoes and thick gravy.“

Rigmor halted and faced a road sign.

“Let me guess. You are wondering about the places you got to visit.”

“Yeah, like I have been to all those on the sign except Helgen.”

“It was a beautiful town full of friendly people. The Jarl of Falkreath has said he won’t pay for it to be repaired.”


“His exact words were, ‘Helgen was a backwater hovel and a blight on this Hold. So no, I will not rebuild it and will make sure what is left is burnt to match the rest of it.’”

“What an arse!”

“Yep. I think what will happen is Elisif when made High Queen, will ask for interested parties to rebuild it. Then it would be under her jurisdiction, the same as Roscrea, and not the Jarl’s.”

“Would you help pay for its rebuild?”

“Yes, if I increase my funds enough.”

“Wulf, please tell me more about ghosts and spirits!”

“Like the ones in The Bloodlet Throne and Morthal?”

“Yep. Have you seen others?”

“Yes, in Akavir. Some moan about how miserable they are. That is understandable because something stops them from moving on to their afterlife. Some try to kill you because they are forced to do so by necromancers. Others try to kill you because they hate that you live, and they don’t. But the mother and child in The Bloodlet Throne and Helgi in Morthal differed from any I have met before.”

“Did you find out the mother’s name? I know the little girl was Xenia, and that is why the name of Sorella’s bow is ‘Xenia’s Wrath.’”

“I did write it in my journal. Xenia’s mother’s name is Nemiel Flarnta. Neither she nor Xenia could talk to me. I didn’t feel any probing on my mental barrier, so telepathy was not an option.”

“Sadly, Nemiel never got to avenge her daughter.”

“I partly avenged her by wiping out that coven. One day I will find that Broodmother and complete the extermination.”

“Did you see the pit that Xenia fell into?”

“Yes, it was the one where we found Sorella. There was a viewing platform above it. I assume that is where Xenia fell from.”

“Do you think they still ate Xenia?”

“I don’t know. It would make no difference to Xenia’s soul. Where it was, I have no idea. Perhaps Xenia was floating in The Void as I did, and her mother’s love was strong enough to bring it to her?”

“We know love is powerful, but you were not impressed with Azura’s essence of a mother’s love.”

“That is utter nonsense and major mumbo jumbo. But so was much of what Lady Azura said.”

“Hey, imagine the essence of a Sethri blow-off!”

“We could toss one bottle into the middle of The New Order’s army and win immediately!”

“Perhaps you should feed Sethri a bowl of mixed beans with some cabbage and point his rear end at the enemy?”

“Too risky. If the wind blows the wrong way, we could kill many of our soldiers and half the population of Whiterun.”

“Will we win the battle at Whiterun?”

“With or without the geriatrics at Yngol’s camp, we will slaughter The New Order at Whiterun. I know there are many Sons of Talos in Imperial uniforms. Most of those who fought beside your father would not be enamoured of Ulfric.”

“What about Ulfric’s claim about fighting for religious freedom?”

“Before getting involved in the civil war, I will issue a public challenge to Ulfric. I will demand he proves that Talos wants him to fight for the right to worship him. I will give him a few days to answer. Then I will ask Priests and Priestesses of different Divines to swear that Talos does not support Ulfric’s claims publicly. I will also publicly challenge Ulfric to a duel to the death with strict adherence to the old ways. No armour. No magic weapons, Thu’um, spells, or Dweomer. I guarantee he would never accept.”

“You want to make as many Stormcloaks give up the cause as possible.”

“Yes, because I will not show them mercy as soon as I start killing them as a Legionnaire. The fewer Stormcloaks who continue to fight, the fewer Legionnaires die, and the fewer memories added to my list.”

“I know you well, Wulf, and killing many Stormcloaks will make you depressed. I won’t be there to help you.”

“Amongst those I kill will be young people caught up in Ulfric’s lies and not ready to die. They will realise too late, and their look of terror will enter my memory and haunt me. And what a lovely conversation we are having on this pleasant walk!”

“Oops. Let’s keep walking and chat about butterflies and other pleasant things.”

I noticed some new buildings and an arch across the road. It seems Riften is doing well after the dragon attack.

As we passed a rabbit, I asked, “Rigmor, are you hungry?”

“Don’t you dare!”

“One spell and it will be roasted to perfection.”

“I will ignore you because I know you would not slaughter an innocent bunny!”

“Goodbye, Mr Bunny. Tell your three hundred and two children, two thousand five hundred and twenty grandchildren and one million, two hundred thousand, four hundred and five great-grandchildren how Rigmor saved your life!”

 “How and I going to tell Mum her future son-in-law is a favourite of Uncle Sheo?”


“Weird is not a strong enough word for you, Dragonbum.”

When Riften’s gates came into view, Rigmor ran, saying, “Come on! You know where!”

She sprinted to the bench we sat on after leaving Riften the first time.

I approached at a more sedate pace.

I sat beside Rigmor and asked, “Is it infinity time?”

“Yeah, for a few seconds.”

We stared briefly, and then Rigmor exclaimed, “That’s quite a view!”

“There is a property in the middle and a farm across the way, but no other houses. I know a blue Khajitti who would love a house over there.”

“As Countess of Bruma, I might need a place in Skyrim to conduct business. A lot of Bruma’s trade is via The Rift.”

“And what part would I play in this estate?”

“My servant, of course. You could walk behind me as I ride side-saddle on a noble white steed.”

“Ren would die of jealousy if you rode another horse!”

“He wouldn’t need to know. While the Countess is away, she can, you know, and play.”

“Servant and plaything? I get the impression I am already those things.”

More laughter and I smiled.

Rigmor asked, “How does it make you feel, yanno, sitting here by the lake?”

“Very relaxed even if a buffet for the mosquitoes.”

“Look at the water, my Guardian.”

I looked at the water, and then Rigmor’s voice transported me to another place.

“It is crystal clear. Cold and inviting. The sound of the water lapping on the bank makes me feel liberated. Ah! The light reflecting on the surface is like music to me.”

Rigmor’s voice was mesmerising. This moment was seared into my memory.

She continued, “All the answers to every question bounce in that light. Look too deep, and you don’t see anything, and it’s all dark except the light on the surface.”

“Like diamonds in the sky?”

“Not quite like the waves in the sea, but they also have answers.”

“What answers do you see in this lake?”

“Look over the lake and close your eyes.”

“Ah, if my eyes are closed, does it matter where I look?”

“Wulf, you will look over the lake and close your eyes, or I will kill you!”

I chuckled, then did as Rigmor asked, and once again, her voice took me to another place. A place I have visited with my foresight!

“I see beautiful green grass fields and golden wheat fields, only made brighter by the sun. The faint smell of melons is in the air, crickets chirping, and birds singing. A little girl runs through a wheat field, making deep tracks as her hands brush against its ears. She realises they are prickly and laughs as a little dog runs alongside, barking with excitement. A farmer is shaking his fist, but she keeps running, laughing louder and louder.

Life is a thrill, the sun is setting, and she doesn’t care about anything. She makes her way up the cold icy stream with her little friend through the brambles and thick evergreen. It isn’t even her dog. It just wanted to play, to jump into the icy pool to fetch the stick.

She keeps running under the deep golden rays of a dying sun, its red fingers softly caressing all it touches. Once again, feeling the snow under her bare feet, the little girl heads towards the huge shadow of the man that has come to meet her. His face cracks with the biggest smile as she runs and jumps full pelt, her arms outstretched, into the dark, smothering safety of his loving arms.”

I gasped, and when I opened my eyes, Rigmor was concerned.

I stood and asked, “Did you just make up that story or was it something your read or maybe even a dream?”

“I don’t know. Is there something wrong?”

“No, I am sorry if this reaction seems strange.”

“There is something important about what I just said, isn’t there?”

“I don’t know. I could just be seeing a coincidence where there isn’t one. Let’s forget about it for now, except for one thing I want you to think about.”


“Where were you standing when you watched the little girl and man?”

“I don’t know. I was narrating it in the first person, I think.”

“Like I said, forget about it for now.”

“Do you think there is a memory I haven’t recovered yet?”

“Intuition tells me there is. But that is not important right now.”

“Maybe, but spending your money is very important!”

“Lucky for you, I remembered to bring some.”

“Ahh, lucky for you and your future chances of having children.”

“You are such a lady.”

I held out my hand and helped Rigmor to her feet. We then walked arm in arm to Riften’s entrance.

We entered and headed for the market.

I let go of Rigmor’s hand when I saw three Stormcloaks blocking one of the main thoroughfares. That forced people to step around them.

Rigmor tapped me on the shoulder, so I turned to her.

“We are here to enjoy ourselves. Ignore the Stormcloaks!”

“Yes, Milady. I need to buy some things. Therefore, look around, and I won’t be far away. I would give you a bag of coins, but the cutpurses are rampant here. So, if you need money, find me, and kiss me. Do it right, and I might let you impoverish me.”

“This will be so cool! We never got the chance last time we were here. What is it you need?”

“Bits and pieces for something that might help somebody.”

“Obscure, but okay, I won’t be a stickybeak.”

I watched Rigmor talk to the store holders and ask where things came from, who made them, etc. She made people instantly relaxed. She will be well-loved by the people of Bruma and a superb Countess.

I asked at several stores, but nobody had the simple items I needed.

As I passed a particularly grimy man, he said, “Hey, matey!”

I pointed to myself.

“Yes, you matey, over here.”

I approached the odorous gentleman and asked, “What can I do for you?”

“Jimmy Ten Fingers is my name. If you can’t find what you want, I’m your man.”

“Is that so?”

“If you’re looking for a good bargain, I got what you might need. It’s a gold necklace with a ruby in the middle. It’s all legit like. It’s just that I need some gold quickly. You see, my poor old auntie took a nasty fall. I need to help get her back on her feet.”

“Well, let’s go help her then. Your aunty must be a big lady if you can’t get her up alone!”


“I am not interested in buying stolen goods, Jimmy.”

“So, what is it you want? Some Skooma?”

“Do you want to be shitting your teeth for a week?”

“Ah, no.”

“I need some simple things to make a doll, but nobody stocks the items I seek.”

“So, you want to make a doll for your daughter?”

“I don’t look that old, do I? No, it is for somebody special to me. A reminder of her past.”

“I’m guessing it’s for the young lady you arrived with? Tell you what, you tell me what you need, and I’ll get the stuff. But if you take the necklace off me ‘ands as well, I’ll do you a good deal.”

I stared at the repulsive little man and said, “Maybe we have a deal if you promise to buy some soap and use it.”

“Listen, you can’t come to Riften Market and leave empty-handed now. I’m sure your pretty little friend would appreciate it.”

“Okay, but no items, no deal, and I don’t want the necklace.”

“Okay, I will get you bits for the bargain price of thirty septims.”



“Fifteen, and I won’t tell Brynjolf you are fencing in Thieves Guild territory. It would be terrible if you needed to change your name to Jimmy Broken Fingers or Jimmy Missing Fingers.”

“Okay, shush! Fifteen septims it is.”

“Alright then, Jimmy. I need sackcloth, wooden dowling, red string, yellow string, and a few inches of black cloth.”

“Hang about here, and I’ll be back in a jiffy.”

As Jimmy scurried off, I ensured Rigmor was okay.

I then approached Madesi.

“Good evening, Madesi.”

“Lord Welkynd, seeing you in clothes and not a tin can is a pleasant change.”

“I noticed the short-haired young lady has visited your store twice. Is there a particular piece she is interested in?”

“Yes, indeed, she liked this necklace with the rose on it.”

Madesi handed me the necklace, and I knew Rigmor would have fallen in love with it.

I asked, “How much?”

“For the person we all owe our freedom and homes, I will sell it at cost. That is five hundred septims.”

“It is worth every septim and more.”

I searched my gem bag and retrieved a perfect diamond worth a thousand septims. I handed it to Madesi, and being a jeweller, he instantly recognised its value.

I told him, “Madesi, I don’t expect rewards for what I do. I certainly don’t expect merchants to sacrifice their profits. Accept the payment. It is fair.”

I pocketed the necklace and walked away before Madesi could protest further.

I watched Rigmor for a few minutes and noticed Brynjolf was shadowing her. She finally noticed him as well and stared at him.

As I walked towards them, Brynjolf turned to me and went pale.

I said, “Yes, Brynjolf, it is who you think. You are probably wondering what wonders The Thieves Guild could do with all that reward money. Unfortunately for you, the young lady is under my protection.”


“You might have heard what happened to the Argonian bounty hunters in The Bee and Barb. I moved so fast that nobody saw my sword strokes before their scaly heads rolled around on the floor. So, I suggest you walk away quickly, leaving the young lady to shop peacefully.”

Brynjolf scurried away with a backward glance. I smiled at him, and he scurried faster.

A few minutes later, I heard one of the Stormcloaks insult two Khajiiti residents.

I asked him, “Soldier, are you from Solitude?”

“Yeah, what’s it to you, milk drinker?”

I stepped up to him and said, “Unlike that cesspool of a city, Riften does not tolerate ignorant, unwashed and stupid racists such as you.”

“Careful, noble or not, me and my friends might have to teach you some manners and the cats as well.”

I punched him in the stomach, and he keeled over. Other Stormcloaks moved to intervene, but Riften guards advised them not to, for their sakes.

I told the wheezing racist, “I am Lord Welkynd, The Dragonborn, and a Thane of Riften. The Stormcloaks are a disgrace, making you special as you are a disgrace to them. Well done! Keep out of the way of Riften’s citizens and keep a civil tongue, or I will get angry.”

Jimmy and most people at the market had watched the exchange. As many laughed and jeered the Stormcloak, the great unwashed said, “Hey, Matey. I gotcha stuff!”

I walked over to Jimmy.

He said, “They don’t call me Ten Fingers for nothin’!”

“I would probably guess it is because you have ten fingers?”


“So, you have my stuff?”

“Yes, here you go. I can’t hang around as I need to attend to my old boat. If you need anything else, you know where to find me.”

“It is not nice to call your aunty an old boat!”


“Thanks, Jimmy. Here is your payment. Once again, I strongly suggest you use some money to buy soap.”

Jimmy counted the coins, smiled so wide all his five teeth showed, and then walked away.

I soon found Rigmor.

I asked, “Enjoying yourself?”

“Yanno, if I ever had to choose between Bruma or Riften, that would be a hard call.”

“But you won’t only have to settle for one, Milady.”

“I suppose I had better get used to that.”

“Did you see anything you like?”

“Yeah…ahh…nah, but I enjoyed the browsing!”

“Well, here is a gift from me to you. It wouldn’t do to leave Riften Market empty-handed!”

I reached around Rigmor’s neck and clasped the necklace in place.

Rigmor exclaimed, “Oh my days, Wulf, it’s beautiful! Thank you, but it cost so much.”

“Rigmor, I am wealthy, remember? But I don’t care how much something costs if I am rewarded with a smile and maybe a kiss.”

Rigmor kissed me, then stepped back with a big grin.

I told her, “It is getting late. We should head back to the farm.”

“I hope you aren’t planning to walk back. I am exhausted.”

“No, and I don’t feel like teleporting. Perhaps I can take you on a luxurious boat cruise back to Sethri’s magnificent manor and estate?”


We headed to the docks and found Jimmy beside an old boat.

I approached and asked, “Jimmy, how would you like to earn some more shiny, clinky gold?”


“Row us across the lake to a farm. It is not far.”

“Twenty septims.”

“Ten or zero.”

“Ten it is. Climb aboard.”

We climbed aboard, and Rigmor whined, “A luxurious boat trip? Yeah, right. Pfft!”

“Rigmor, the lake is covered in fog. All sound will be muffled, and who knows what your imagination will conjure.”

“Sometimes, Wulf, you are just a big softy.”

“Yeah, especially when I am not wearing armour.”


The fog was so thick we had to skirt the shoreline for some time before spotting the lights of the farmhouse.

We disembarked, and I paid Jimmy, who rowed away whistling.

I said to Rigmor, “Today was extraordinary. Neither of us wore armour or weapons and were a normal couple with a happy female and a henpecked male. It has been full of cherished memories, and I couldn’t have asked for more.”

“Yes, Wulf, it was a day to remember, and you are not henpecked!”

“Are you tired?”

“Far more than I thought I would be.”

“I think that concoction they gave you is yet to be fully purged.”

“Well, my pooh is no longer black, which is an improvement.”

“Ahh, thanks for that vital piece of news.”

“Hey, you’re a physician. Aren’t you supposed to ask about these things?”

“Okay, Lady Rigmor Ragnarsdottier, when is your menses due?”

“None of your business, weirdo!”

“Ha, so much for asking relevant questions of a patient.”

“I will certainly let you know if it is late.”

“Give me time to hide before you tell Sigunn.”

Rigmor laughed again, and we walked to the farmhouse hand in hand.

When we entered the farmhouse, Yngol was there.

Rigmor headed for her bedroom with a slight wave, her only acknowledgement of the others in the room.

Sigunn took Sorella downstairs to brush her hair. Angi headed outside.

Sethri remained seated as I approached Yngol.

I asked, “Have they landed?”

“Yes. A battalion-sized contingent of Bosmer archers and Altmer soldiers immediately headed for Morthal while the rest of the troops and equipment disembarked.”

“Do we have an estimation of numbers for their Northern Army?”

“Far less than we predicted. The equivalent of two legions. Approximately thirty per cent of their numbers are well-known Orc mercenaries. They are tough sons of bitches and probably their main battering ram if too much resistance is met.”

“I trust we will harass them enough without causing suspicion that it is a ruse. When they get close enough to Morthal, they will find their officers and sergeants targets of hit-and-run mages.”

“Vayu assures me these tactics worked in Akavir against better troops and leaders than this lot.”

“They did.”

“It is strange knowing how young you are yet hearing of your battle experience.”

“I accepted my role as Champion of The Divines, aware of what my life would entail. I have trained for years and fought many battles, Yngol. Often against far greater odds and better soldiers than we will face at Whiterun. Talos knows my capabilities, so a Priest of The Nine advised His Imperial Majesty to make me a General.”

“What can you tell me about the battles in Akavir?”

“The Tsaesci and Ka’Po’Tun live and die in a time of perpetual war. They learn to fight young, and the best are taught to lead. The Tsaesci are formidable opponents, as Tamriel has discovered in the past. The Ka’Po’Tun are better but lack a good navy. The Tang Mo substitute discipline and tactics with unpredictability. If your leaders do not adapt to circumstances, they will overrun you while laughing hysterically. We rarely faced Kamal, but they are like Nord berserkers, only twice as big and many times stronger. The scars of their visit to Skyrim can be seen all over Windhelm. They will slaughter you if you can’t maintain your lines against them.”

“It makes the sellswords and Altmer of The New Order sound like children.”

“Many Stormcloaks are ex-legion. That makes them the best-trained soldiers on Tamriel, if not the entirety of Nirn. But even the eager and less trained recruits Ulfric has attracted are fighting for their home, friends, and family. That makes them better soldiers than anything The New Order has. You know that Yngol, from when you fought beside Redguards, most of whom were civilians.”

“I find it incredible that you have spoken to Talos.”

“I have spoken to him regularly and for many years. Rigmor met him recently. Rigmor also spoke to Lady Azura and other gods.”

“You speak of these things so casually.”

“Only because these things occur when doing my duty as Champion of The Divines. You can tell your men somebody special will be by my side at Whiterun. The Avatar of Tsun will help us defeat The New Order.”

“Shor’s Shield-Thane?”

“Yes. I had to defeat Tsun in a duel to enter The Hall of Valour. He is taller and wider than you, Yngol, and wields a mighty and ancient Nord axe. He will demolish the enemy with his axe and Thu’um.”

“Many are already excited to fight beside The Dragonborn. However, to fight beside Tsun will invigorate even the most battle-weary of them.”

“I did not see a mage with you?”

“Oh, Vayu dropped me off here for an hour so I could, ahh….”

“Woo Angi?”

“I have kind of made it obvious, haven’t I?”

“As long as you realise that Angi has two heads.”


“Sorella and Angi are inseparable.”

“Oh, yeah, Angi has made that point several times.”

“Well, get on with your wooing. Tell Vayu that I will set out for Solstheim first thing tomorrow.”

Yngol made his way outside, and I found myself starting to like him, despite his status of traitorous scum.

Before I could reach Rigmor, Sethri called me over, so I sat with him.

He asked, “How sure are you of defeating The New Order?”

“There is a very slim chance we will lose.”

“Lose? I’m afraid it’s a little too late for that. You see, everyone is counting on you, Wulf.”

“If they expect me to go in and slaughter with The Voice like The Dragonborn of legends, they will be disappointed. I could wipe out the entire army that Aedriath fields, but that is not what should happen. The Imperial and Stormcloak troops should fight as one army and defeat The New Order. That will demonstrate why a Skyrim separate from The Empire cannot survive if other, more competent forces were to invade. I hope I have fewer Stormcloaks facing me in the future, as I do not relish the idea of killing them. We will win via better troops, morale, and tactics. I will kill with a sword and spells and still be a terrifying, unstoppable agent of death. But I am not the key to winning, Sethri. Even without me, our forces would easily triumph.”

“Can you imagine the fate that awaits the people of Skyrim if you lose? Even if Mede does defeat the army in the south. How long would it take for him to muster the force to dislodge Aedriath from the strongholds? If at all he can. I’ll wager he would choose to fortify his northern border and try to be all diplomatic. He would cut Skyrim loose. Let’s face it, Skyrim is expendable. A mountainous, cold, lonely place filled with dissent and unrest. This barren land will become the beginnings of a New Dominion of an Elven God King in waiting.”

“Go and tell the Imperial Legionnaires fighting the civil war that Skyrim is expendable! The Empire and Skyrim need each other, or they will both perish. And do you know what would happen if any of the Daedric Princes manifested on Nirn? Depending on which one, every mortal would be killed or enslaved. The New Order is not deluding themselves that Malacath restored as Trinimac would show them mercy, for he would not need an army once he has killed everybody else! They hope to destroy The Divines and be useful to Malacath long enough to reach that goal. Like the normal Thalmor, they want to undo Convention and linear time to become immortal as they believe they were in the past.”

“Well, that is a grimmer picture than my scenario! So, you have only one option. Do or die, Dragonborn. Do or die.”

“That is what I do, and so far, I have only died once!”

“On that light note, I’ll hit the sack.”

“I am glad we didn’t get you to speak to the Sons of Talos. They would have cried for their mothers and drank milk with your lack of optimism!”

“Just go out there and do what you do. Yngol, Varon and all those brave men and women out there believe in you. They know you went into Oblivion, kicked arse, and came out alive, not to mention the defeat of Alduin. Do you know what they are calling you out there?”

“Umm, Wulf the Arse Kicker?”

“They are calling you Guardian General. Don’t underestimate yourself, my friend. Even if they have the numbers, it doesn’t give them a victory.”

I laughed, and Sethri looked worried.

I explained, “The least likely mortal on Nirn to underestimate themself is me! And numbers count for nothing! A few of The New Order troops will be fanatics who believe in Aedriath’s vision. Most will be rank-and-file soldiers and mercenaries whose sole motivation is money. They face men and women fighting for their loved ones, way of life and freedom. They face the best trained, best equipped, and most professional soldiers on Nirn. That makes each of our soldiers worth many of theirs. It is they who are outnumbered! I know how to use that morale and the terrain. I also know the battle for Whiterun will be conducted under terrible weather, making their archers far less effective.”

“How can you be sure about the weather?”

“The young seer I took to the Riften Market today.”


“Thank you for your help, Sethri. I shall thank Lady Azura at her shrine near Winterhold when possible.”

“As it happens, if by perchance you do lose and your head finds a nice new home on the battlements of Whiterun. I have a nice little bolt hole in Morrowind where I’ll be happy to take all my current residents I have living here. So, don’t you worry!”

“Get some sleep. Sethri.”

“As you wish, Guardian General, as you wish.”

I walked into the bedroom and approached Rigmor.

She said, “You look worried, and I know what it is. You have to go to Solstheim.”

“How do you know that?”

“Mum has ears, you know. She told me I had to accept these sudden absences if we were together. I told her we had discussed how you would sometimes have to leave on short notice and for undetermined periods. I explained that I had already accepted that fact.”


“Mum then went on to say that verbally accepting it, and experiencing it, are two different things. Well, I am about to find out, aren’t I.”

“I didn’t want to tell you before or during the walk.”

“I understand you didn’t want to spoil the day. But Wulf, when Miraak’s Goons appeared, I saw what you endure. You hate killing but eliminated those assassins. We couldn’t even walk a few miles to Riften without danger. When we went to the hot springs, you had to deal with Mr Tibbs and a few other assassins. Some hunted me, but most were hunting you. We have teleported everywhere when I know you would prefer to have spent time riding beside me and showing me Skyrim. I am comfortable with the reality, so please, do what you have to do to keep the people of Nirn safe.”

“I have to do something outside, but I will sit next to you overnight.”

“Don’t be too long, Wulf. I am exhausted. But I am sure Sorella will be in soon to talk and talk and talk.”

When I exited the farmhouse, the fog was still thick.

I used Night Vision to avoid any embarrassing trips on the way to a workbench.

The Jenny that the god in The Void showed me was clear in my mind.

My friends watched, fascinated, as I carefully made as close a replica as possible. It took almost an hour of fiddling and adjusting.

I turned to find Gregor looking puzzled.

“Yes, Gregor?”

“Ahh, is that dolly for Sorella, or have you something you need to tell us?”

“Yes, Gregor, I have a spell to make me a prepubescent girl child, and I intend to use it to confuse Aedriath.”

“Wow, that is clever!”

“Sometimes I think you have been hit in the head too often. It is for Rigmor and is a replica of a doll that Ragnar, her father, made for her. I hope it will unlock the last of her memories.”

“You can be a bastard sometimes.”

“Only sometimes? I will have to try harder.”

I entered the farmhouse. Sethri had not gone to bed yet and was sitting at the far table, staring into infinity. I will have to ask around and see if that is contagious.

Sorella was fast asleep in her new dress when I entered the bedroom. She must have been so tired she didn’t have the energy to change into her new nightgown.

I stood in front of Rigmor, with Jenny hidden behind my back.

I announced, “I have another present for you, Rigmor.”

I knelt on one knee and held out Jenny.

Rigmor looked, squinted, and then yelled, “JENNY!”

Sorella stirred but did not awaken.

Rigmor gently took Jenny from me and lay her on the bed.

I then helped Rigmor disrobe, for she was almost falling asleep on her feet.

Rigmor lay next to Jenny, and within seconds she was asleep.

I sat next to her and let her familiar breathing lead me to sleep.

Lord Talos was worried. Junctions, sometimes called Ripples in The Void, keep appearing without warning. Wulf’s actions cause them.

Thousand of years ago, Saint Alessia foresaw darkness in the future but did not know its cause or when it would occur. She knew nothing could be seen beyond it by any seer. She named it The Obscurity.

The Psijic Order, the only seers comparable to the god, foresaw the same darkness thousands of years after Alessia did. Like his mother, the Psijics realised that Wulf was crucial to resolving whatever caused The Obscurity and allowing Mundus to continue beyond. That is why they agreed to teach an outsider for the first time.

The Jills had not seen The Obscurity in potential timelines until very recently. Its probability of happening increased with each Junction created by Wulf. After each Junction, it became more apparent that to guarantee Mundus’ existence beyond The Obscurity, Wulf and Rigmor would have to work together.

Added to the problems was the diminishing effectiveness of The Liminal Barrier. As it weakened, Daedric Princes would need less and less effort to bypass it.

Talos wondered how to tell Wulf a disturbing truth. Wulf’s actions in protecting the mortals of Nirn were somehow increasing the chances of it being destroyed. Only Wulf and Rigmor could prevent it.

The Divines quickly dismissed the idea of stopping Wulf from placing himself in danger to guarantee his survival. All agreed that Wulf was the best mortal hero currently available to resolve other crises that might endanger Mundus, mortals and Nirn.

Saint Alessia had also warned what must happen before The Obscurity could be stopped. Unfortunately, her warning had been turned into a prophecy involving a curse. Instead of her warning being widely known, the prophecy was passed on by a few scholars whose numbers decreased each generation.

Most scholars rightly dismissed the prophecy as no god can place such a curse. The prophecy was not written in The Elder Scrolls, so its authenticity was further questioned.

Lord Talos continued to worry as Mundus’ two saviours slept in ignorance.

2 thoughts on “A war and a walk

  1. I quote freely: ‘Liminal barriers or any Tsaesci Creation Myth are not in my military curriculum!!!’

    ‘Kyne helped design the early animals from which all others evolved. To control the early animal life and make them migrate, etcetera, she needed a conduit to them. Lady Azura uses Black Diamonds as a conduit. Lady Kyne uses the air, which includes the winds, as the conduit to control the animals. Speech is possible because air vibrates part of our throats. That is why Lady Kyne is the Divine associated with The Thu’um.’

    I often try to imagine the voices of Rigmor and Wulf while talking or her laughs and giggles in my mind and I find myself caught in a reverie of my own past experiences. I really appreciate your speeches about The 9 Gods which you succeeded in including at the end of your journals each time. Or punching a bloody racist caught in flagrant is always welcome!!!
    Thanks man
    May the Moons watch over your head as usual!

  2. Live for today for tomorrow is not a promise of things to come. Wulf and Rigmor know this only to well. Thank You Mark

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