Unlikely Heroes: Prologue - Across a Sea of Spectres (On Hold)

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    I awoke groggily, shaking the last traces pf sleep away. My eyes adjusted to the uneasy darkness as I grew from my dreams. My fingers ached from writing the last chapters of Bestia Infinium: The Dremora - A Study of Lesser Daedra yesterday. I felt annoyed as I realised that the House of Orsinium Glories had set a date upon the entrances for their latest compilation, which they entitled the Bestia Infinium. I wasn't too worried though - my research, both from my own findings, and those that Neloth supplied me with. I scratched my horn, relieving an itch that I could barely feel. As I propped myself up onto my elbows, I searched around the small cabin that Gjalund had offered me. My bed was a small cot with fur beds, but I didn't mind - I'd slept in far worse conditions during my research stay in Morrowind. I grabbed at my robe, which lay discarded next to me. I stood up, groaning as new aches appeared along my back. I slid the robe over my body, and tightened the chitin pauldrons over my shoulders. A little mirror had been supplied for me, and I quickly checked my appearance. My goatlike head - as Neloth had likened it to - was uncommon amongst Minotaurs, but then again - a normal Mintoaur my age was usually almost double the height of a fully-grown Altmer: I only reached the height of most Dunmer, a fact I didn't really care for - after all, I was vastly different to my aggressive peers. I for one, could read, and as I'd shown before, could write in both Nibenese, and I recently had begun to pick up the guttural language of the Dremora as a result of my studies. I grinned as I remembered when I'd shown up on Raven Rock's docks - they had emptied faster than my magicka pool when I attempted to levitate! I had only convinced Gjalund Salt-Sage with a promised copy of Bestia Infinium: The Dremora - A Study of Lesser Daedra, which he promptly accepted. Well, the bag of coins must have been helpful. I glanced back at the mirror. My deep blue robes were imprinted with golden insignias, and my personal coat-of-arms, twin horns on a blue background, was adorned on the cloak that hung down the back of my robe. My long, shaggy blonde fur glimmered with sweat, and my eyes twinkled with curiousity. I placed the mirror back down, and tidied the covers on my bed. When I was satisfied, I walked under the small arch that made up the doorway, and into the main room of the hull. A large table was laid out in the middle, and two sailors sat on it, picking at slabs of preserved meat unwillingly - and I understood why they were so unwilling - I had not tasted anything more disgusting in my years in Morrowind and the Cyrodiilian Coast. I walked past, and they gave me an uneasy wave - something I was used to. I strode up a small flight of stairs that led towards the ladder that opened up on the deck of the Northern Maiden. As I climbed up the ladder, pushing the trapdoor open when I reached it, a wave slammed directly into my face. Cursing as the salt rinsed my eyes, I threw my hands up. A crystalline shield formed out of thin air, and I held the ward up as I clambered out onto the deck. I could see a Nord in thick, fur clothing at the helm of the ship, grinning happily as if this was his idea of heaven. As the wave subsided, I dropped the ward and grimaced as the magicka emptied. I, as of yet, was not by any means a master of the arcane. At least, the ward had protected me from the worst of the wave. I yelled out to the man at the helm. 
    'Oi, Gjalund! How far 'till we reach Skyrim?' My voice barely carried, but my Minotaur genetics thankfully enhanced my vocals. 
    The Nord glanced down at me, his long, wild blonde hair flying. 'We left Solstheim only yesterday! However, yer lucky! The passage from Solstheim to Skyrim only takes about a day, so in an hour or two, you should begin to see Windhelm, the City of Kings!' I thanked the man, and strode over to a small wooden rowbench that I had frequented, especially yesterday when the weather had been nicer. I missed Solstheim, and I was grateful for the research I had been able to perform. My knowledge of magic had also been boosted significantly, thanks to Neloth of the Telvanni, but I still wished to know more about the arcane art. Other than my basic knowledge of Destruction, I only knew a few limited Restoration and Alteration spells. The other Schools were all but unknown to me. 
    I wrapped my cloak around my body, hoping that the extra warmth would prove helpful. The rowbench was cold, but relaxing almost. I looked out to sea, the Sea of Ghosts, as Gjalund passionately referred to it - 'On account of the infamous coastline, upon which many a ship has run aground' - That had done wonders to reassure me. I was tempted to pull out my notebook and continue on with Bestia Infinium, but decided that the weather was too risky. I continued surverying the endless horizon, watching patiently as the waves rolled onwards, towards Akavir, or perhaps, some other continent I didn't know about. The rain soon cleared, and the sun shone through the clouds, so I lay back and began to relax. 

     


    I awoke to the sound of yelling. My immediate thought was that we had run aground, or been boarded by pirates. I sprang up, accidentally knocking on of my curled horns on the mast. As I groaned with pain, I surveyed the area, searching for a fellow boat, a jagged coastline of rocks, or anything remotely dangerous. My eyes found nothing, and after glancing at Gjalund, I noticed that we had not run aground. The Nord was cheering ecstatically, and I soon saw why. In the far distance, a coastline could be seen. Naught more than a mere blanket of white from our distance, but it was clearly Skyrim. I grinned happily. I did, however miss Morrowind with a passion. I had developed a deep love for the ash-skinned elves of what was once Resdayn, and I am determined to chronicle the various lore and mysteries surrounding the Dunmer, or as the uneducated call them, the Dark Elves. I glanced out at the coastline, and already imagined how cold it would be. I would need to get a warm coat, rather quickly. 
    'Hey, Gjalund?' I called out, reaching with my voice to be heard over the wind. The Nord called back at me, and I continued. 'Where would I get a warm coat?' 
    Gjalund shrugged. 'We've got one down in the hold; not to mention, Sadri, the Dunmer has some old clothing at his store in Windhelm. We'll be there in an hour or two, if the weather holds. You can have the coat, if you want.' I shook my head; I would buy my own. 
    'Alert me when we dock, okay?' I asked, to which Gjalund promptly nodded. He was a nice enough man, and wasn't afraid or rude to me purely because of my unseemly appearance. It wasn't likely, admittedly, to see a Minotaur sail on a boat and write novels, but the Line of Mor are constantly changing. I pulled my journal from the pocket of my robe, and splayed my palm upwards. A purple light glimmered, and only a second later, a quill sat in my hand. I must admit, magick did have it's benefits. I winced as I felt my magicka drain, but continued with my business. I set quill to paper, and begin to write the day's events.

    10th of Last Seed - The Journal of Wiemo Spellweaver
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    I said farewell to Solstheim today. I will sorely miss the little ash-covered islands. My time with Neloth of Telvanni, as well as the Redoran settlement of Raven Rock, has told me much of the culture of these two houses. House Telvanni has little to no presence on mainland Morrowind, and only a rather small amount of influence on Vvardenfell. The Red Year has been hard on these people. The eruption of Red Mountain started their sorrows, casting Morrowind in ash and fire unlike anywhere else on Nirn. And of course, the invasion of the Sahxleel (or Argonians, in Nibenese) was the truly dreadful event. The lizard-folk swept through what-was-known-as Resdayn, eradicating House Dres, and almost annihilating House Telvanni - both significant promoters of slavery, at which Argonians considered a sore spot - they were slaves themselves for many an era. House Redoran is the only thing that defeated the Argonian invaders, and in doing so, have become the strongest House in Morrowind. They own many a city, including Raven Rock, and effectively, the entire island of Solstheim - though Neloth claims ownership of the ashwastes, in which his tower, Tel Mithryn, has been grown. I believe that Neloth is actually rather devastated at the weakening of House Telvanni, formerly one of the most powerful of the Houses - quite possibly the most. My time with the Skaal, the peaceful Nordic tribe set in the foothills of the snow-mounts also proved informative. I have deducted that the Skaal are the only culture to worship a singular culture - their religion is that of the Teachings of the All-Maker, a solitary God who is said to have created everything. My beliefs lead me to think he is indeed Akatosh, the Lord of Time and King of Divinity, but I could be wrong. The Skaal seem to also know of five 'Stones' created by the All-Maker - The Sun, The Earth, The Water, The Beast, and the Wind - each said to bestow a legendary power upon those who pay homage. Admittedly, I was only able to discover one - the Earth, located just north of Raven Rock Dock. It is seemed to be besieged, as wooden structures surround the holy structure, and admittedly, I find it unnatural and ominous. I have also glimpsed various people doing what appears to be hammering at the structures, but this could be wrong. Here, I will provide a vivid description of the Stone:

    10"6 - Roughly double my height, and similar to my width, though I could not get an accurate measurement. 
    Made of a stony material, unknown whether some material of the All-Maker, or otherwise simple rock. Runes are carved, all in symblistic designs of nature - a reference to the Stone's title, that of Earth. It emits a green beacon that continues skywards, and seems impervious to most tools - my chisel had no affect on it. It is similar to Cyrodiil's Doomstones, but clearly different. 

    I have also discovered what I believe to be Morag Tong activity on Solstheim, though whether this is a benefit or not I cannot tell. The Great Houses are in great need of the Agents of Mephala, but I cannot see any good coming of the return of a group of assassins legally allowed to murder - it is not right. I have warned Councillor Morvayn, and hopefully he will be on guard. There have been rumours of creatures unholy, who are spawned from the ash itself. I can still see Red Mountain in the distance, through the ashclouds that block most of the view. It seems to taunt the Dunmer. I write this aboard the Northern Maiden, as I am about to dock in Skyrim, and I can still see the Mountain - is it's evil ash-spewing visage neverending? I will know soon, for Gjalund is calling me.

    I am and remain, Wiemo Spellweaver, Descendant of Morihaus and Domihaus.

     

     

    'We're here!' The cry echoed across the wooden deck of the Northern Maiden.Gjalund looked out across the horizon, which was now replaced from a snowy coastline with walls of stone that formed Windhelm, City of Kings. The city was grand, and as I assessed the architecture, it looked remarkably similar to that of the Nordic ruins on Solstheim, so I deducted the city was built by someone old - possibly even Ysgramor, of Atmora. A large, palace-like structure dominated the skyline. A dock was built from stone, and three smaller, wooden ships - mostly fishing ones, presumably - were docked. Argonians could be seen striding across the docklands, and from their stature, they weren't happy. They had bent backs, and they were abnormally thin, almost hollow. Men in simple uniforms with blue sashes, shields, and insignias patrolled the dock, and I assumed they were Stormcloaks - the rebellion against Imperial occupation of Skyrim - and after checking with Gjalund, I realised I was correct. We sailed in gently, passing small islands of frozen ice, careful not to damage the hull. Gjalund yelled out to the docks, and a soldier waved, and then began untying a rope - most likely for tying the boats off - and threw it out to Gjalund. The Nord promptly caught it and proceeded to wrap it around the mast. As we drew closer, Gjalund carefully angled the tiller so that we drifted in besides a fishing boat. We docked calmly, and Gjalund jumped forward, and seemed to glide across the deck and onto the docks. His face was alit with a smile, and I instantly knew that Windhelm was his home. As I got up, packing my journal away, I strode over towards the docks. As I began to hop off, I noticed Gjalund smile at me. I smiled back. 

    I had entered Skyrim, home of the Nords.

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Comments

2 Comments   |   Paws and 1 other like this.
  • Paws
    Paws   ·  September 7
    :) First person narrative from a scholarly 'tor. It's like reading a modern Morihaus' journal. 
  • Tanuki
    Tanuki   ·  September 7
    Most chapters will be longer than this. This is only a bridging chapter to bring our hero to Skyrim.