C.O.T.W Chapter 59: The Underforge Under Fire

  • Hasir and Tigress entered the all-too-familiar main hall of the monastery and took the right hand staircase. Tigress stayed at the

    bottom as per Hasir's request. Hasir climbed the grey steps and found Inigo sitting on the stone bench he had left him on a few days

    ago and found him softly singing 'Brenda the Bear' to himself. Hasir told Inigo of his brother, Tulen and how he sent an unnamed

    nord werewolf to kill his grandmother because of how she 'betrayed' the silver hand assassins. 


    He also told Hasir about the black wolf thaT Tulen transformed into but he left out the burning of the underforge because he thought

    Inigo would not understand but thought it would be better for him to see for himself instead of taking Hasir's word for it. He looked

    sideways at the smiling Khajiit and asked him why Tulen transformed into one of the shadow wolves that he had entrusted the

    khajiit, the two nords and the high elf with; he did not want to think of the high elf. 


    Hasir asked the khajiit to explain why his brother was a shadow wolf and what that meant but he could not find the words to say it.

    He thought it was best to keep that hidden until it was time. Hasir asked Inigo to join him and Tigress as they went on an adventure

    much greater than themselves. Inigo agreed and went down the steps and out onto the spiral stoned steps.

    Hasir exited High Hrothgar, gave Tigress a kind smile and waved. Hasir stopped and turned back to her, freezing between the

    second and third step on the spiral staircase,

    "Erm, mom, do you want to continue adventuring with me? I could use an, er, able bodied akaviri by my side." He smirked back at

    her, reddening slighty.


    She blushed and stuck a hand out, half expecting the Argonian to take it,

    "Yes, I...I would love that." She stammered back at him, smiling, Hasir took her furred hand in his scaled out and pumped it up and

    down. Inigo followed them.


    They walked on and started to proceed through a snowy chasm with high, rocky cliff walls rising up on either side and a bit further

    on there was an unseen threat, a scaly threat. Tigress saw this before Hasir did and she ran toward the cliff face. Hasir laughed as

    he saw Tigress running madly at the solid cliff face as he did not see what she saw. An Argonian wearing a full suit of imperial light

    armor and brandishing an imperial sword at the pai of them. He ran at them, bellowing in rage and brought his imperial silver-plated

    sword down hard but the Ka'po'tun met the attack with her fists and efffectively blocked the attacks.


    The Argonian struggled as the Akaviri tried to lower the sword, or at least, push it away from her. She failed at the test of strength

    as the Argonian tossed her aside like a toy that a dog was tired of playing with. He narrowed his eyes as he closed in on Hasir. The

    darker skiiined of the two took out his stone edged axes and tried to block the frantic Argonian's attacks. The Argonian's legs did not

    buckle at Hasir's block. He swiped out with his axe in his offhand but it only sliced through air as the Argonian moved behind

    Hasir with the speed of a skilled assassin and brought the sword down hard on Hasir's tail.

    The air became thick with a loud, painful hiss,

    "HSSSS!!!!" The Argonian's eyes watered and a single tear escaped his eyes. "How the fuck are you so fast? Just who are you?" He

    growled through gritted teeth


    "Ah, that, my scaly friend, is a secret you are not privy on." He said, waggling a finger at Hasir, "As for my name, I have many

    names, Wathuthil, The Silver Fox, The hunter, the wolf skinner," He smiled and patted Hasir on the shoulder, "but you, my scaly

    friend can call me Mere-Glim." He said, tail swishing behind him in excitement.


    Mere-Glim narrowed his eyes while he lent his head closer to the wounded Argonian. His chocolate spines on his head swayed

    sligthly as the wind blew through the chasm. Inigo came running as fast as he could when he hear the loud hiss of his friend in

    despair. The massive door slid aside and the khajiit descended the steps, tail held erect behind him in a state of alert.


    When he reached the bottom of the steps he ran to Hasir,

    "My friend what is wrong?" He asked the Argoian, "You look like you ate an undercooked fish." He frowned and studied Hasir


    Hasir slammed his tail down in anger but this caused waves of pain to rocket through his body. He teetered a bit and fell into the

    snow causing a second wave of pain to hit him as he sat on his already broken tail. Inigo shrieked and bent down to help his injured

    friend to his feet. In a fit of anger, Hasir slapped his feline friend's hand away,

    "Hands off, you blasted feline." He growled at him as he slowly prised himself out of the snow. He lost his balance and fell into the

    snow again. After a few tries, he begrudgingly accepted the indigo khajiit's help. He tried to catch his breaath, leaning against one of

    the cliff faces for support as he had, temporarily, lost his 'kickstand.'

    Hasir slid down the cliff face and landed with a thud on the snowy ground, falling forward, his eyes misted over in unconsciousness.

    Inigo stared at his fallen friend and his face began to contort with rage. He whipped around and yelled at Mere-Glim,

    "Glim, I don't know you and...at this point I don't care if I ever know you." He strode over to the argonian who was standing in

    pose that clearly said that he was glad of what he did and he believed it would bring great honor to both Molag Bal and the Silver



    "You will pay for what you did!" Mere-Glim just scoffed at the khajiit. Enraged like a bull who saw red, he threw himself at the

    Argonian, unsheathed his ebony sword and slashed out at his stomach. The Argonian yowled in pain but no sooner did the

    khajiit inflict the damage that the wound began healing itself and he unsheathed his sword.


    Mere-Glim blocked the deranged khajiit's attacks to his face with a sideways turned blade. When the Argonian found an opening he

    put all his weight behind the blade, got up and started pushing the khajiit backwards toward the cliff. Mere-glim successfully

    disarmed the khajiit by breaking his hand. The sword thudded into the snow by his feet. Inigo howled in pain as Mere-Glim lent close

    to him; baring his teeth,

    "I am an assassin for the silver hand." He hissed in Inigo's ear. "As Molag Bal is my witness, I will see him killed, both he and Tulen

    demands it!" 


    At this, Inigo's brow furrowed while he held his now broken hand,

    "I am ashamed to ask, but, who's Tulen and what does he have to do this?" He said through tear-streaked eyes


    Mere-Glim fixed him with an inquisitive look,

    "You haven't heard of Tulen. Well have you heard of the Siilver Hand?"


    Inigo shook his head. Both because he really did not know who they were and because he was trying to stave of the unconciousness

    that threatened to overwhelm him. The assassins' eyes popped in amazement. He told the khajiit that the Silver Hand are werewolf

    hunters and head of their number, an Argonian named Tulen hunts all over Skyrim for vile lycanthropes and kill them. Inigo said that

    was horrible and wondered why they were after his friend, Hasir. Mere-Glim told Inigo that Tulen has a personal vendetta against

    Hircine, whom Hasir happily serves. he also told the khajiit that the reason for Molag Bal's plan of mass extermination of all

    werewolves in Skyrim is because he lusted, and still lusts after, Hirncine's sister Kynareth. Mere-Glim also told him that the cold-

    hearted daedric god believes that Hasir must be killed in order to break Hircine and finally win Kynareth's heart.


    Inigo smirked and pointed a few feet behind him, 

    "You're in luck, he is over there."  He oticed his mistake as soon and he said it

    Hasir strode up to him and tapped him on the shoulder and cleared his throat. Inigo nearly jumped out of his fur,

    "By the nines, my friend, you nearly scared my fleas away." He said, a little startled


    Hasir, looked at him bewildered,

    "You're fleas?" he asked as his face screwed up in a look of disgust. He patted Inigo on his shoulder, "listen, er, you might want to go

    to a healer to have them look at this."


    Inigo looked taken aback at this. He explained that he and his fleas lived harmoniously with each other. Both Hasir and Tigress

    mimed vomiting. Mere-Glim looked at them strangely and shook his head,

    "You guys need to grow thicker scales and fur, queasy about fleas? Honestly." He shook his head in utter shame

    Inigo set his leather bag on the snowy ground, stuffed his unborken furred hand into it. Hasir thought he was going to reach for flea

    repellant or some equally potent insect spray but he did not reach for a flea repellent but rather a clear, round object. Inigo extracted

    this object, which took quite awhile because he had five books impeding his extraction of it. He finally extracted the peculiar object

    by stumbled over a rock and dropped it; it rolled near where Tigress and Hasir stood. Hasir picked up the clear jar with a copper top

    that lay in the snow. He turned the jar over in his clawed hand.


    His eyes widened in wonder as he saw a capital D carved into the underside of the thin, wooden base of the jar. He wondered why

    Inigo had a dragonfly in a jar; except the jar was empty. Inigo laughed at him, thinking this was a clever dig. Hasir shook his head

    and told him he was not joking. All color drained from the khajiit's face as he looked into the jar; Hasir was not lying as it was indeed


    He sank to his knees and started sobbing.

    "Mr. Dragonfly was the first friend I had, now, without him, I don't know if I can face the world." He said through waterlogged eyes.


    Tiger walked over to the khajiit sitting on a rock mere inches from the rocky cliff walls, found a rock next to his and sat down on it.

    She took his injured hand in hers, Inigo winced as she did so and her hands started glowing a golden white color as his bones

    reslotted themselves in their proper alignment, not only that but tehy also redouble their strength. As the process was going on,

    Inigo could not help but swoon madly over her. He became lost in those yellow eyes. When this was done, he pulled his now mended

    hand away from her and immediately went red in the face.

    He sat there, thoughts of love and possible betrayal stampeding though his mind like a mammoth herd that their giant masters lost

    control of. He thought on Aela and how she would take this. She might not talk to Inigo for weeks because she might think that he

    betrayed her trust and drove a wedge so deep between them that they may never recover.

    He finally regained his bluish complexion and turned
     to her.

    "Ermmm, Tigress, can I ask you something?" He said in what he hoped was a friendly voice


    She turned to him, striped hands on her knees eyes narrowed,

    "Sure furred one, what's on your mind?"


    Inigo fiddled for a bit, trying to find the right words,

    "Erm, what would you if, say hypothetically, you lost a friend? One you have been friends with since you were a little kitten?"


    Tigress scratched her head in confusion,

    "Erm, I am not sure what you mean, furred one."


    At this, Inigo stood up forcefully,

    "I have a name, so you best use it." He said, looking at the female tiger with an accusatory look. "My name is Inigo, not 'furred one'

    Geez, use the proper pronouns for divines' sake." He sat down so hard on the rock he almost fell off. She stared into Inigo's eyes; where

    she had seen kindness and warmth moments before, she only saw, well, she could not find the words to describe it. For all intents

    and purposes, she saw a deep void, one wich sucked all color from anyone who looked into those once cheery eyes. She started to back

    away from Inigo as she feared his now cold eyes would suck her in if she did no get away from him.

    Inigo snapped out of whatever funk he was in and smiled at Tigress; however, she did not reciprocate this kind gesture and started

    backing slowly away drom him. She wore a panicked expression on her face and pointed a menacing clawed finger at the khajiit, 

    "You...You're not Inigo, who or what are you?"


    Inigo's face screwed up in confusion,

    "What do you mean?" He asked, "I am still me." He said, smiling, reaching out for the tiger so she knew he was for real


    She slapped it away,

    "I don't believe you Mak'um'eaom, you are not my friend, you are a soulless being." She yelled in his direction


    Ingio laughed once more,

    "You are mistake I am not a, er, whatever you just said." He grabbed her hand and put in on his lap. "I am real, trust me." He smiled

    sincerely at her, his eyes glowing in the night


    She wrenched her hand out of his grip and slapped him hard across the face adding a hint of red to his blue and white furry face,

    "Don't try and trick me, I knew what I saw and you are not of this world." She said, frightened.

    Hasir came over and sat down on a vacant stone next to the khajiit and Ka'Po'Tun,

    "So,er, what are we talking about?" He remembered something and reached into his bag that he set in the snow, he prodded Inigo

    on the shoulder and showed him his scaly fist,

    "Inigo, look who I found." He said in a sing-song voice


    Hasir opened his hand and there on his palm was a tiny golden insect. The blue khajiit's eyes grew to the size of large marbles,

    "My friend, how did you? Where did you? Who?" He stammered


    Hasir chuckled and said he found this dragonfly flying near the entrance to High Hrothgar looking despondant because he had lost

    his feline friend, scooped him up in his palm and brought him here. All the while the little insect was buzzing about something. Hasir

    did not know what he was saying because he did not speak the insect language despite there being plenty in Blackmarsh. He smiled

    as he took out the jar and deposited the miniscule creature inside, screwed the lid on and handed it to Inigo. The khajiit was so

    grateful for this tiny gesture that he had forgotten Hasir's earlier question.


    Hasir sat on the rock and repeated his question. Inigo gestured to Tigress and said he did not know what she was blathering on

    about. Tigress sighed and stated that Inigo is as stupid as he looks. She then expained that she saw a great beast rising to the

    surface in the khajiit's eye; one that creates death and despair anywhere it walks. She folded her arms and said the akaviri referred

    to that beast as the 'Xing'Qi'' or 'the shadow beast'. She then went on to describe it as a beast even the dragons, beasts sacred to

    the nation of Akavir fear above all others.

    Hasir and Inigo exchanged confused looks,

    "Does this beast have a name in Tamrielic, the common tongue?" They asked, in unison


    She sighed and shook her head,

    "Alas, I so not know his proper name only that he enjoys destruction and domination."


    Inigo and Hasir looked at each other. The khajiit shook his head in defeat. Hasir clipped him on the head,

    "You mindless oaf, how do you not know? It is obviously Molag Bal." He hissed at the moronic khajiit


    The Ka'po'tun nodded,

    "That name does sound familiar, it does not sound like a Tamrielic name though." She said, creasing her forehead


    Hasir said it is not Tamrielic, the name comes from the daedric language. In the tongue of Oblivion, it means 'stone fire.' The

    Argonian ruminated on the meaning a bit more. He said the daedric princeis hot-tempered like fire and is sometimes as stubborn as

    a stone. Hasir told them that Molag Bal promises his followers salvation, but what he wants most of all is to dominate mortals as

    the daedric prince sees them merely as a means to an end.

     They walked onwards to the city of Whiterun completely unaware of what they might encounter. The only one who seemed to be

    aware of what was to happen next was Hasir. Hasir smirked to himself and saw the faces of his companions completely oblivious to

    what awaited them. He smirked to himself and thought By Hircine, these people are in for a shock. He chuckled as he joined them on

    the way to Whiterun.