13 Frost Fall
I spoke with Sul-Matuul as early as it was polite to do so. His face characteristically betrayed no hint of his thoughts as I explained what I had witnessed, but he accepted my story as truth. He cautioned that the word would soon spread of my feat and that the Great Houses and especially the Temple would not look upon my being named Nerevarine by the Ashland tribes. He advised that if I had any business with them that I take care of that before talking to the other two tribes. Good advice, but I have no desire to involve myself with House Redoran any further, at least not right now.
He also told me to talk to Nibani about the ways of the other tribes so that I could approach them without making mistakes and wasting time. As Ashkhan of the Urshilaku tribe, he was empowered to name me Nerevarine, but he insisted on giving me a small speech about 'need' and 'duty' beforehand. The 'need' was to destroy Dagoth Ur's Sixth House, to expose the Tribunal as false gods, and to show Nerevar's ring as proof of Azura's favor. These were not needs that I really needed to be told about, but perhaps Sul-Matuul was feeling appreciative over his role as the facilitator of the Nerevarine Prophecies.
As for duty, he merely repeated what Nibani had been telling me: that I must defeat Dagoth Ur and free the false gods from their guilt. Having said what he needed to say, Sul-Matuul formally named me Urshilaku Nerevarine. His final gift to me was a carved stone amulet he called the 'Teeth of the Urshilaku', which he said would serve as proof of the Urshilaku Tribe's naming of me.
As for the other tribes, his opinion was not high. He described the the Erabenimsun Tribe as a collection of brutes, badly led and more a mob than a tribe. His advice was to forsake the Ashkhan entirely and talk directly with the tribe's wise-woman. According to Sul-Matuul, my arrival into their camp would likely result in the violent removal of the current Ashkhan in favor of one more in favor with the wise-woman. Good to know.
Ahemmusa Tribe are their mirror opposites. The tribe largely consists of peaceful guar herders and do not wage war against any of the other tribes, nor do they bear much animosity towards outlanders. However, the revival of the Daedric cults have corralled the tribe on to a narrow peninsula and the tribe's lack of warrior culture has led to a lack of warriors to keep the tribe safe.
Sul-Matuul saved the greatest amount of contempt for Zainab Tribe. He described them as a tribe of 'coin-obsessed merchants' and revealed that they actually owned an ebony mine somewhere inside the Ghostfence. This is interesting news, as it implies a level of stable living possible within what I consider to be Dagoth Ur's realm.
Nibani recommended that if I was set on speaking to the tribes right away, that I go to the Ahemmusa first, as they are the shortest distance from the Urshilaku and in the most dire need of assistance, be it from the Nerevarine or anyone else. She recommended discarding my Daedric weapons before visiting the tribes, as she felt the tribes would look unfavorably towards the Nerevarine wielding Daedra-infused arms.
My feelings on that matter were, and still is, mixed. Knowing what I do about the history of the Dunmer people, I could see how the Daedric weaponry could be seen as a negative. But on the other side, the weapons are far stronger than anything else I have and a dead Nerevarine does no one any good. In the end, I wound up leaving them at my house in Ald'ruhn, but again I am getting a little ahead of the day's events.
However, my recent adventures had depleted my inventory of useful items and saddled me with things of questionable utility. So rather than immediately journey to the tribe, I used my last scroll of Divine Intervention to pop back to Gnisis. From there it was a short walk across the river to Berandas and therefore, Caldera.
I purchased a fair quantity of restoratives at the Caldera Mages Guild and teleported to each of the Guilds to buy more potions and to sell off the treasure I had picked up from the Sixth House bases. The House amulets, taken from the Sixth House priests, were especially valued. I finished my rounds at the Ald'ruhn guild and walked home. Everything was just as I left it and I took the time to place what I did not want to carry or sell carefully, for you never know when something may have a use later.
The Bonemold bow Sul-Matuul had me fetch from the Urshilaku burial cavern is one of those things. I did not throw it away or sell it out of respect for the tribe, but now that I am switching to lighter, more 'native' weapons, it has saved me the trouble of having to buy one. Plus, using an Urshilaku bow may help me in my relations with the tribes.
Similarly, Erur-Dan's chitin spear that I was given in the Cavern of the Incarnate has replaced my reliable, and heavy, Daedric spear. Strange as it may sound, I feel just as confident without the Daedric weaponry as I did with them. The weight of the Daedric equipment has strengthened me more than I realized, for I feel light as a feather with my simple bow and spear and I am vastly more skilled than I used to be.
An hour or so was spent doing what I could with the many alchemy ingredients I had collected. My skill at potion-crafting is probably never going to be great and I wasted a great deal of what I had. But as the afternoon rolled around I had a collection of useful, if somewhat weak, potions made by my own hands.
My last stop was Balmora, first to the Razor Hole to buy some silvered arrows and have my Dreugh (Ashlander approved) armor repaired, then to Nalcarya's. I bought a few potions I could not find at the Mages Guilds, but I really had come to sell my most valuable ingredients, for which she paid me twenty-five hundred Septims. She mentioned that there was a rumor going about me and the prophecies. According to her, most people are disregarding it as a silly rumor, but the Temple has labeled me as a heretic...which I find odd. It is not as if the Tribunal Temple has a large amount of Khajiit converts after all. Would we not all be heretics in some fashion?
Rotheran fortress lay just north of the Ahemmusa Camp and teleporting there certainly saved me a great deal of time. From there it was just a short walk across the water into the camp, shrouded in fog and perilously close to a Daedric shrine.
The tribespeople milling about did not seem all that surprised that I was visiting them with the intention to claim the title of Ahemmusa Nerevarine. I was directed to one of the 'Gulakhans', a position inferior to that of Ashkhan, but the highest available within the Amhemmusa tribe.
The Gulakhan I spoke with called himself Dutadalk and was very dismissive of me. He said he had no problems with letting another fool try to play at fulfilling the Prophecies and ungraciously allowed me to speak with the tribe's wise woman, Sinnammu. She was an old woman, but a great deal more helpful than the Gulakhan was. She was called Sinnammu and she was willing to give me a fair chance to prove that I was the Nerevarine. The proof she needed seemed simple: create a safe place for the Ahemmusa.
When the Temple was strong, the tribe was able to retreat to the Daedric shrine of Ald Daedroth, for the Ordinators kept the shrine safe. But a priestess of Sheogorath has taken advantage of the Temple concentrating their forces at Ghostgate to bringto occupy the shrine with her cultists and summoned Daedra. Sinnammu's task was for me to go to the shrine, kill or drive off all the cultists, and generally make the place safe again for the Ahemmusa. When I thought it safe, I was to return to the camp and escort the aged wise woman to the shrine.
Having said that, she seemed resigned to death, with each of my attempts to gather more information met with the reminder that I would not be named Nerevarine if she should die. Between their rudeness and lack of hope, the Ahemmusa truly are a depressing lot.
I was eager to be free of them and set off immediately for the shrine. It lay on an island almost directly north of the camp and my water walking spell saved me from having to trouble myself with slaughterfish and dreugh.
The sounds of battle rang from the ruined shrine well before I reached it and by the time I got there there was only a single Ordinator and a cultist left fighting outside. The cultist summoned a Bonewalker, but neither was any match for the Temple warrior. He was equipped with silver-colored armor in place of the usual gold, perhaps a lesser or greater rank? I do not know.
Surprisingly, the Ordinator turned on me as soon as he dispatched the cultist and I was forced to kill him. I had thought I was marked for death by the Temple, but I met a great deal of Ordinators battling the remaining cultists inside the shrine and they had no issues with me so long as I left them alone.
The Ordinators had already done a good job at eliminating the cultists and I only fought two of them myself. Each of them was carrying identical amulets, with minor enchantments, but I left them on the bodies. No sense in giving the Ordinators reason to attack me. As an aside, both my chitin spear and bonemold bow fared very well in battle, far better than I expected.
And that was the whole of my story of Ald Daedroth. I walked back across the water to the camp and arrived just before midnight or so. I am calling it a night now rather than wake the old woman for the walk back. Tomorrow morning I will escort her to the ruins and hopefully be named Ahemmusa Nerevarine.