C.o.t.W Chapter 106: Bird on the Wind

  • Hasir never thought he'd be in Dragonsreach again. It looked like it hadn't changed from when he first visited all those months ago.

    He walked up the steps and passed the fire pit that lay in the center of the hall. Proventius led him to where the Jarl sat. The jarl

    gestured to the female standing next to him and introduced his housecarl To the Argonian.


    Hasir's tail slammed onto the floor. He sat down in the chair beside the Jarl's throne, 

    "Balgruuf, I already met her." He said. "Your steward invited me here for a reason, so what is it?" 

    Proventius took the floor and told Hasir that the Jarl has a problem with dragons attacking the holds' inhabitants. He opened his

    mouth to say more but the Jarl waved him away and strode over to Hasir.

    "What my housecarl says is true. Whiterun has been overrun with dragons of late and I require someone who has dealt with them

    before," He eyed Hasir, "You dispose of those winged demons for me and I will, personally, see to it that you are rewarded."

    Hasir nodded and asked what he had to do. The jarl got up and walked, with Hasir, over to Farengar.

    "Farengar, have you decoded the dragonstone yet? You've had months!" He said, falling into a chair in front of the court wizard's

    desk, "I was also told by the harbinger of the local mead hall that the Argonian needs a new set of armor. Something... derived from

    dragons. Dragonscale armor or something like that." 


    Hasir did not know how the speech that he had had with Kodlak the night before had found its way up to Dragonsreach but he knew

    not to go against the harbinger's wishes. He knew that he moved to clumsily in his current wolf armor. Farengar cleared his throat

    and both Hasir and the jarl looked at him.


    He gestured to a seat in front of his desk, suggesting that Hasir sat down. Hasir sat down while his tail whipped around in confusion

    behind him. The court wizard smiled and gestured to a yellowed map of Skyrim.

    "Balgruuf, I have. It did not take months, though it did take extensive brain power to decipher it. There are tons of dragons in

    Skyrim but the strongest ones are perched on tops of mountains; those are positioned south of Markarth, west of Riften, north of a

    nordic ruins and there are some located in an icy wasteland up in the north. It is well hidden and will take some exploring to find."


    Hasir glanced at him with a raised eyebrow. He wasn't sure how the court wizard expected him to go through with this.

    "Farengar, this is a bounty we're talking about. Unless I have help, I cannot dominate every dragon that perches on a mountaintop

    by myself." He said, sounding taken aback. 

    Farengar nodded said he should first tackle the dragon perched on the mountain near Riften. Hasir nodded, thanked Farengar and

    exited the hall. 

    On his way back to the mead hall, Hasir heard some chanting carried to hi like a bird on the wind. He sat down in one of the

    benches to listen since he was in no hurry to get the companions.

    "Mighty Talos, you were the one who gave men the courage to face dangers greater than themselves. I urge you to help us cease

    this senseless civil war in these lands. If only more people adhered to your teachings." The 'priest' stopped and thought for a

    moment, "These dragons and the so-called 'dragonborn' are not true gods. The only true god is the Imperial one ascendant. All will

    crumble at the feet of the mighty Talos."


    Hasir groaned audibly, stood up and went for his weapons; his bow or sword, realizing that they both broke. He smirked as he

    transformed into his beast form, snuck up behind the ranting and raving 'prophet' using the bushes as cover, dragged the

    unfortunate victim into the grass and feasted upon his flesh like a crow feeding on a rotting corpse. When this was done, Twilight

    stood up, wiped the blood from his muzzle and howled.


    Hasir sighed satisfactorily as he ascended the steps of the mead hall. As he crosed over the threshold, Kodlak ran up to him, looking


    "Hasir, thank the nine you're alright... who was screaming/" He asked. The argonian smiled slyly at her and said he must've been

    hearing Vilkas having one of his nightmares. The harbinger ignored him and went out into Whiterun.


    He know he couldn't keep up the charade any longer so he pushed the mead hall doors open. Hasir followed him down the mead hall

    steps. He hurried passed the harbinger and positioned himself in front of the body. The harbinger's eyes narrowed as he saw the



    He croseed his arms and stared menacingly at the Argonian.

    "Okay Hasir, care to, er, tell me what... this... is?" He said, gesturing to the grass. Hasir said nothing was going on; he just wanted

    to get Kodlak outside because he found a perfect place for the whelps to train. Kodlak's eyes narrowed dangerously as they bore into

    the trembling Argonian.


    Hasir sighed as his tail slipped between his legs as if it were a hibernating snake,

    "Okay harbinger, you caught me. I was not looking for a place to train. I killed Heimskr and stored his body in the grass behind this

    statue," He gestured to the statue of an Imperial killing a snake and hung his head, "Do what you will with me. Punish me, kick me

    out of the companions; I don't care." He said, snarling in anger. Kodlak raised a white eyebrow. Hasir gulped and continued, "By

    oblivion, I... I  killed him, well, that is not entirely true. My wereewolf form... Twilight, he is the one who should be punished... he

    killed the false prophet."

    Kodlak pushed passed him and pulled the body out of the grass and sighed mournfully,

    "Hasir... if this occured in Jorrvaskr I'd be somewhat lenient but it didn't. It happened outside the walls of the mead hall which

    means that I'll have to discuss this with Balgruuf.


    The argonian gawked at him like a demented slaughterfish. He thought Balgruuf would think up a worse punishment than the

    harbinger would. Kodlak eyed him scathingly,

    "Let's get up to Dragonsreach. Balgruuf must be notified of this."


    Hasir cocked his head at the harbinger halfway between the small pool and the arched walkway.

    "Why does he have to know of this? I think Balgruuf already is well informed of this." Kodlak shook his head and advanced up the

    steps and entered the nordic longhouse. Hasir hurried up the steps, entering after him. The jarl became concerned as he saw Kodlak

    striding closer to him. Both the steward and housecarl frowned as the harbinger stood before him.


    The jarl stood up and wondered why the harbinger was there,

    "Kodlak, you were just here. What is it this time?"


    The old Nord asked if the Jarl had seen Hiemskr lately. Balgruuf frowned and asked what this was about.

    "Balgruuf, I am sure you've noticed Heimskr's absence. I mean, your longhouse looks out over the whole damned city." The jarl's

    eyes narrowed; unsure of the point Kodlak was making. Kodlak cleared his throat, "Sorry if I sound irritated but a few minutes ago, I

    saw Heimskr dead behind a statue that lay outside Dragonsreach. In case you're wondering, I didn't wittness the act myself, but,

    rather the aftermath." Kodlak pointed to Hasir, who was sitting in a chair at the table in the middle of the hall, "This heinous deed

    was done by none other than one of my companions."

    The jarl walked over to the sorrowful Argonian and eyed him suspiciously,

    "How did he do this Kodlak? Did he strangle to poor soul to death?" The harbinger shook his head, wanting to tell the Jarl the how it

    really went but knew that if he did, Balgruuf would, no doubt, tell the whole city.


    At that moment, Farengar, who was busy sorting his scrolls and spell tomes, heard some discord and came over. He smiled at

    Balgruuf urging him to go easy on the Argonian and asked what this was about. dismayed, jarl Balgruuf turned to him, and gestured

    toward the impertinent Argonian,

    "Farengar, he killed Heimskr. I trust you know who Hiemskr is? That prophet who shrieks about Talos everyday?" Farengar nodded.


    Unseen by both the court wizard and the harbinger, the jarl winked at Hasir,

    "About damn time something was done with that. I was about to lob his head off with a longsword myself." He said in an undertone.

    Hasir chuckled at this. Kodlak, however, heard this and reprimanded the harbinger saying that men of his station should not talk

    about going about cutting off heads for fun; whether or not the owners of said heads are annoying. 


    Balgruuf apologized and resumed his mantle as Jarl once again.

    "Farengar told me that when he went down in the market to get some food,  he noticed something was off. He went to investigate

    and found a body behind the Talos statue with a bite mark on his neck and chunks of flesh missing; almost as if a wild bear had

    attacked him."


    Hasir looked at Farengar and snarled,

    "It wasn't a bear, you moron, it was a werewolf. Don't you people know the difference?"

    Balgruuf strode over to his seat at the end of the long table, placed his hands on the polished surface and stared at Hasir.

    "Listen, you inpertinent reptile. I think I know bear marks when I see them. Don't ever call me a 'moron' again else I will toss you

    out on yous ass, understood?" 


    Hasir nodded and, when the Jarl's back was turned, stuck his tongue out at him. Kodlak rushed over to him and lifted the Argonian

    up by his armor. Hasir gasped; the old man had a lot more strength in him than he let on. Kodlak's eyes bore into the Argonian's

    blue ones as black and white fur blossomed beneath the harbinger's fingers. Kodlak gasped as he scurreid toward the firepit in

    order to get away from the werewolf. He was shocked that Hasir had the balls to foolishly reveal his wolf form in front of the Jarl.


    Balgruuf gawked at the black and white werewolf and pointed a shaky finger at it,

    "Irileth told me about the companions. I thought she was barking mad but this proves she wasn't. You lot are werewolves. By

    the divines, I thought the howling going on in the mead hall were just some stray wild wolves that somehow found their way into

    Jorrvaskr." He said, frightened. 


    Twilight rounded on Balgruuf and snarled. In his mind, anyone who knew of the werewolves of Jorrvaskr was an enemy. He wondered

    if he knew of the circle' as well; though he'd take no chances. He advanced on the Jarl; rattling chandeliers as his bulk knocked into

    them. Balgruuf groped blindly for the weapon rack as his eyes remained fixed on the beast. Finding a steel sword, he swung it

    toward the beast. 


    Twilight snarled and lunged for the Jarl who readied the steel sword again. Farengar saw this, ran to poisition himself between the

    Jarl and the raging werewolf. The court wizard trying talking down the werewolf but failed as a huge paw tore through the flesh of his

    arm like a knife through butter. 


    Twilight ignored the pitiful sack of meat and advanced, eyes narrowing, on the Jarl. The harbinger drew his sword and brought the

    sword down in an downward arc which cut into the werewolf's chest. Balgruuf's eyes went wide as the werewolf stumbled toward

    him; still snarling. When he was at the bottom of the steps near the throne; it fell with a resounding 'thud'. 


    Balgruuf looked, concerned, from the unmoving werewolf to the harbinger,

    "Kodlak, did you kill him?" The harbinger shook his head, "No, just knocked it out. I knew something like this was bound to happen,

    so I bought a paralysis poison from Arcadia. Glad to see it came in handy." He said, chuckling

    Hasir awoke hours later in Kodlak's office. He got up from where he lay and walked over to the harbinger who stood with one arm on

    the third self of the bookshelf by the enchanting table. His face told Hasir all he needed to know. Hasir gulped as the harbinger

    gestured to the table. The argonian sat down reluctantly as his tail took refuge between his legs.


    Kodlak walked over and sat down opposite Hasir and eyed the Argonian with his grey disapproving eyes,

    "Kodlak what is this? As I said before, you should punish Twilight, not me." He said nervously


    The harbinger's eye narrowed; Hasir gulped. Kodlak's hands slammed on the table, making the argonian jump,

    "Hasir, How dare you go transforming in front of the Jarl and attack Heimskr, an imperial who did nothing wrong. I... have no choice

    but to ban you from Jorrvaskr. You broke our most sacred rule one time too many. I cannot allow other people to discover our most


    guarded secret nor suffer for your stupidity."


    Hasir opened his mouth but Kodlak shook his head, "You won't be able to talk yourself out of this one nor can anyone else either.

    Why did you kill Hiemskr? Did he annoy you in some way or are you just averse to people who have different religious preferences

    than you?" Hasir started to speak. Kodlak held up a hand, "I don't want to hear apologies. You will have to find work around

    Whiterun to make people forget about your 'furry' transgression. Now get out, I don't want to see hide nor tail of you in here again

    until you have finished your penance. I can, however, permit Xelzaz and Inigo to go with you, at least. I am not that heartless. I can

    offer you some small comfort in your exile."


    Kodlak turned to the Argonian, tail still tucked between his legs,

    "If I hear that you've learned your lesson, I might let you back in."

    Hasir left the room and went upstairs. He told Inigo and Rakel the distressing news that Kodlak had just told him. Aela got up and

    walked over to the mead hall doors and Hasir and his three companions were about to leave.

    "Ha! About time the garbage is taken out." She said, a sneer stretching over her face, "Haven't you learned yet that Skyrim is for

    the Nords? Your filth isn't welcome here and it looks like Kodlak has warmed up to my way of thinking as well."


    Hasir snarled,

    "Fuck off!"


    Hasir, Inigo and Xelzaz blanked her as they walked out into the city. Hasir could hear the female Nord as she threw plates and mugs

    across the hall in anger. He was going to go in and ask Aela what the exact reason for hating his race was but Inigo shook his

    head and pushed the Argonian onward toward the main gates. 


    When the three got well outside the city gates, They shivered. Xelzaz turned to Hasir and Inigo,

    "What are we supposed to do now?" He asked exhausted, "I am well aware that Inigo and I are not part of the supposed suspension,

    but Hasir..." He began, but sighed in defeat, "Ah well, no use crying for deeds long passed... erm... look, there's a camp just over

    there, let's see if they have any supplies we can salvage, er, buy before we set out again."


    The three companions walked over to the small camp manned by three khajiit. One of them smiled and waved while the others

    were too engrossed in their endeavors to take notice. He walked over to Hasir and shook his hand,

    "Hasir, how nice to see you again. What can I do for you?" He asked concernedly


    Hasir smiled at Kharjo and was about to explain his business when Inigo rudely interrupted.

    "We were kicked out of the companions, so, er, we would like-"


    Inigo's train of thought was derailed as Hasir elbowed him in the stomach. The smart blue cat doubled over and groaned in pain.

    Hasir walked over to where Inigo lay and lent toward him and yanked his head back,

    "He doesssn't know that, you idiot! For all he or any of usss know, I am only temporarily ssusspended from the Companionsss, got

    it?" He hissed angrily


    Inigo nodded, eyes watering from the pain. Hasir released Inigo to haggle with Kharjo.

    "Greetings Kharjo. We are, er... do you have anything to eat?"


    Kharjo nodded and showed Hasir his wares: six pieces of venison, some armor, five animal furs and ten pieces of leather. Hasir

    bought three pieces of venison, three ice fox furs and two deer furs. The argonian forked over the gold and laid the furs in front of

    the large tent in which the khajiit sat. He sat on one of the fox furs and Inigo took the other, leaving Xelzaz to take one of the deer


    Hasir placed his head on his hands, which were balled into fists and stared out over the plains of Whiterun, apparently lost in

    thought. Inigo Looked up at the faint outline of the nordic longhouse and then at the forlorn Argonian,

    "What's the matter my friend, is your fur flat? I can fluff it for you, if you like." He said, trying to be helpful


    Hasir looked at the blue khajiit and slowly shook his head,

    "No, it's not that. It's just that... You did not have to join me in my supposed exile. This was my doing and I should've faced this

    exile alone." He buried his head in his hands, "I'm sorry I dragged you and Xelzaz into this."


    Inigo shook his head and told the forlorn Argonian it was fine. Hasir told them they should turn in for the night as they would be

    off early in the morning.. The Argonoan pulled a spare fur over himself and glanced over to his companions who were nestled in the

    fur beds, fast asleep. He cast a quick glance at the tents and saw that Kharjo and his fellow khajiit fast asleep as well. Hasir stayed

    awake for a long time, mulling over the unfortunate events that befell him over in his mind before his eyes closed and sleep overtook



    The next morning, the sweet aroma of fish filled Hasir's nostrils. He rolled over and opened his eyes to see Inigo, Xelzaz and the

    other three khajiit sitting in a circle inside the largest of the tents. The argonian stretched, got up and walked over to tent and saw

    his companions sitting around a figure he hadn't seen before.


    He entered and raised his spiky eyebrows; gesturing to the reptilian stranger in brown robes with white symbols on them. He

    turned to Inigo and asked him who who she was. Inigo glanced from Hasir to the amber-scaled figure and groaned.

    "Hasir, do you not know your own family? She even has the same shade of blue eyes for crying out loud." 

    Hasir looked closer and saw that Inigo was right, though she did not have a scar like he did. She turned her head and, seeing Hasir,

    ran to him and hugged him.

    "Kynareth's branches. It's good to see you again egg-brother." She said, her tail coil and uncoiling behind her, "I thought something

    terrible had happened to you when you left for Solsthiem. I am glad to see my fears were unfounded."


    Hasir looked at her and smiled,

    "It's good to see you too K'hairi."


    Hasir introduced his sister to everyone while K'hairi fished into her bag for food. She extracted four helpings of fish, some venison

    and a couple of plates. She sliced the venison and thee fish and placed each slice along with a fish filet on each of the plates and

    handed them to Hasir and his friends. 


    Once they finished, she picked up the places and washed them in a wash basin that stood beside a bookshelf that looked like it was

    carved from the bones of a mammoth. She walked back over and sat down in the circle. Hasir loooked at her curiously and wondered

    why she was here.

    "K'hairi, forgive me for prying, but why are you here?"


    She stood up and gestured to the tent as a whole,

    "I came to Skyrim because Molag Bal's forces burned our village to the ground. He said he would spare those who showed interest in

    his cause. Many argonians said they would serve-in hopes that that would stay his wrathful hand- but I, as well as Kynareth knew

    that his false ploy was utter bullshit. He killed the people who pledged to his service anyway."


    Hasir felt tears welling up in his eyes,

    "What about Kassamae and Kul-en?"


    K'hairi wiped a tear from her eye and flung herself at Hasir.

    "Kassamae's okay. She stood resolute in her defiance and killed many daedra, but Kul-en-h..he died helping Kassamae fight the

    daedra Molag Bal sent to do his dirty work.


    Hasir lifted her chin so her eyes were level with his,

    "What about you? How in Oblivion did you escape?"

     K'hairi looked at her egg-brother rather uncertainly,

    "How did I-? I was borne away on the wings of my mistress."


    Hasir screwed his face up in thought. K'hairi sighed and stared, dead pan, into his eyes,

    "I was carried away by a bird. By the divines Hasir, your egg must've spend its whole life in the shade."


    Hasir snarled at her; he did not appreciate her taking digs at his intelligence,

    "My egg was fine, no cracks on it whatsoever. I just fail to see how a bird that weighs no more than a stone can carry your weight,

    that's all."


    K'hairi sighed and said he shouldn't take things at face value and recognize when someone was being metaphorical. Hasir apologized

    and asked his egg-sister, a bit too forcefully, how exactly she had gotten here.


    She glanced around the tent as if finding a place to start, looked at Hasir and sighed.

    "I arrived here through a portal. Kynareth saved me from the daedric invasion. Kynareth materialized as a bird and created a portal

    of wind with her wings and, holding onto her claws, she took me through it into a land of snow."


    Hasir got up, sat beside his egg-sister and hugged her.

    "I am so glad that Kynareth sent you here." Hasir released her, held her at arms and creased his forehead, "why did she send you

    here exactly?" I worship her too, you know, Kynareth, along with her brother."


    K'hairi looked at Hasir like a dog who was givven mixed messages from its master.

    "I was't aware Kynareth had a brother. Actually, no, I lied. Kassamae told me..."


    Hasir stood up and strode around the room; clearly agitated by something,

    "By Hircine, K'hairi, we've the same mother." He yelled. "Just call her 'mom', damnit!"


    K'hairi gave him a dirty look and held her hands up as if creating a shield from her egg-brother's red-hot rage,

    "Sorry, I meant to say mom told me Kynareth had a brother. His name is Y'ffre."


    She asked Hasir if he'd heard about Y'ffre. He shook his head. K'hairi told him that Y'ffre is the great woodland spirit commonly

    worshipped by the bosmer. She told Hasir that the nature goddess had sent her to Skyrim because she had seen further trouble

    stirring up in the land of Skyrim that was linked with Molag Bal.


    She told him of Kynareth, disguised as a hawk with white neck feathers with brownish-black wing and back feathers and kept a

    watchful eye on the silverhand-assassins and soldiers, denoting their movements. She had told K'hairi about the silver hand's

    alterior motives when she got to Gnaar mok and before the Argonian had entered the portal to Skyrim.

    She turned toward Hasir and told him that Kynareth sent her to Skyrim because she, Kynareth, feared that the Silver Hand was

    mobilizing for some reason and the goddess told her to find one who shares her blood who might share in the espionage. 


    Hasir sighed and looked down at the earthy floor of the tent,

    "Erm... about that. K'hairi I have a confession to make." He said, tail sliding between his legs


    K'hairi rounded on him and grasped his shoulders in shock,

    "Have we been switched at birth? Am I not your sister?" She rattled off these questions off very fast and Hasir waved off these false

    inquiries. This left the female Argonian confused, "Well, don't just sit there like a stick in the mud, tell me already." She said



    Hasir wanted to keep this a secret from his egg-sister but saw this was as good a time as any to tell her. He just hoped she would


    "K'hairi, no that is not it at all." He gulped nervously, "I... I'm a werewolf." He said ashamedly


    She pushed him playfully in the shoulder, a bit harder than she intended, sending him stumbling as he fell flat on his muzzle on the

    threadbare rug.


    He got up, eyes watering.. She just looked at him and laughed,

    "I know that... truth be told, I am a werewolf as well. I hid the fact from you because I thought you wouldn't understand." She got

    up and placed her arm around him, "Seems like we both have a secret." She strode out of the tent, motioning for the khajiit and

    Argonians to follow her, "We are burning daylight; if we want to stop the silver hand and hinder Molag Bal's 'grand' plan, we'd best

    get moving."

    Hasir followed K'hairi as she led them over to a clearing and readied her bow. Hasir glanced at her and pointed to her bow,

    "What're you doing with that? I thought we were hunting the silver hand." He turned his muzzle skyward and could smell fur and

    animal musk on the air rather than silver, "Yep. Nothing here but fur and feces, let's go back." 


    K'hairi grabbed Hasir's arm and told him that this was meant to be a training exercise. She looked at him while she nocked her


    "How are you at archery?" He shrugged and saw he was ok at it. Inigo glanced at him and smirked, saying that he shouldn't be so

    down on himself. Hasir snarled at the khajiit and told him to shut up.


    Inigo held up his hands and looked taken aback,

    "Hey, easy my friend. I was just trying to insert a funny tale to try and break up the gloomy atmosphere." He laughed but soon

    yelped with fright when the Argonian fired off an arrow so close to his ear; too close for the smart blue cat's comfort. Inigo yelled at

    him that he was not a target and that the Arrgonian should focus on his objective. Hasir growled and turned back to his egg-sister.


    K'hairi watched as Hasir rreadied another arrow and fired it at the side of the buck nearest him. The arrow flew through the air,

    drove clean through the stag's side; pinning it to the tree behind it. As the stag's let out its barking cry of pain, Hasir couldn't help

    but feel pity for it.


    The argonian grabbed the arrow and pulled it free. He winced a bit when the stag fell to the ground with a sickening thud. Hasir

    could hear the ungulate's heartbeat getting fainter and fainter. Hasir took his dagger from his bag and in one fluid motion, sliced

    through the creature's neck, skinned it and gathered the bones as he heard that Inigo and K'hairi had felled their creatures. Like

    him, they skinned their kills and stowed the furs in their bags. 


    K'hairi shoulder her bag and shot a smile at her brother,

    "Never shot a bow, my tail. Brother, you were amazing!" She said excitedly. "That settles it. Hasir, I give you the role of lookout." 


    He groaned at this and completely missed K'hairi's jubilent laughter.

    "Just kidding. Kharjo's the lookout. Inigo's the bait and you'll be... the archer."


    Hasir smiled at her, tail swishing to and fro. He asked where they will hit first. K'hairi looked at him and cast him a knowing grin,

    "I received intel that the silver hand operate in several key locations. One such location is Halted Steam camp. Years ago, when the

    Silver Hand leader, Krev the skinner fell at the siege of Gallows Rock and months ago, when his subordinate, Tulen was killed at Fort

    Fellhammer, the remaining Silver hand members made temporary hideouts; those being Halted Stream camp northwest of Whiterun,

    Ironbind Barrow south of Winterhold and some even holed up with the forsworn at a small encampment near Markarth.


    K'hairi had already thought of a location that they would start but wanted Hasir and Inigo to decide. Growing ever impatient that

    they did not decide quick enough, she spoke for them.

    "No decisions? Very well then, Halted Stream camp it is then, since it is the closest."


    K'hairi led her brother and his companions into the tent, grabbed Kharjo and headed off in the direction of the camp. They passed by

    the city gate and Hasir wondered if eliminating the Silver Hand and crippling Molag Bal's army would give Kodlak cause to see that

    he was in the wrong and let him back into the guild.