Friday, February 7, 2014

Morrowind Day 77 - The Plan to Defeat Dagoth Ur

30 Frost Fall
I woke at Zainab Camp earlier than usual due to the hunters leaving before dawn. I left the camp as they did and walked towards Tel Vos. It was not long before I came across a woman huddled by a campfire and I assumed she was a bandit. I approached, confident of my ability to overpower a single individual, but she proved friendly, identifying herself as a Daedra worshiper. She admitted that she worships what the Temple refers to as the 'bad Daedra' and offered to teach me a little about the Daedra and her life as a cultist. I declined and went on my way. In another encounter we may find each other fighting to the death, but I am not about to start slaying people simply because their beliefs conflict with mine.
Further on I was attacked by a bandit duo armed with chitin clubs...again. I don't understand where all of them keep coming from, nor why I look to be such an appealing target for their ineffectual violence. I would expect word to somehow get around that bandits have been found dead at their campsites and for everyone to be a bit more wary. But no, I can reliably expect Dunmer armed with clubs to attack me. It might be sad if it were not so infuriating.

Between their campsite and Tel Vos lurked a lumbering Ogrim Daedra which charged at me from atop a hill, giving the massive creature great speed and momentum. Unfortunately for it, the speed came at the cost of being unable to slow down or change direction effectively and I neatly dodged the creature's attempted ambush.

I fired arrows into its back as it attempted to use its stubby legs to stop running away from me and the creature took a lot of arrows before it was able to come at me again, though slower this time. By the time it came within melee distance I had shot over twenty steel arrows into it and it only took a few stabs with my spear to finally fell the huge Daedra.
Luck was evidently not with me today, for almost immediately after the Ogrim I found myself under assault by a powerful Golden Saint Daedra, whose battle was placidly observed by a guar foraging for food nearby. Curiously the Daedra was armed with an enchanted glass long sword...and a plain netch leather shield. My summoned Daedric Spear tore the shield in two with one strike and the Saint seemed a bit confused by this and did not fight very well.
My reward for the perilous journey to Tel Vos was one hundred Septims and a very useful amulet enchanted with a levitation spell. It will save me from having to purchase expensive levitation scrolls and potions, as well as from casting my levitation spell which is as weak as can be while still remaining useful. Despite its weakness, my success at casting it is sporadic at best.

I recalled back to Ald'ruhn and went to the Mages Guild in order to be sent to Vivec to meet with the Archcanon of the Tribunal Temple. I tested my new levitation amulet and floated from the top of the Foreign Quarter to the Temple canton, noticing for the first time two large statues of a Dunmer in prayer built on the roofs of the cantons in front of the Temple canton. I wonder how many of Vivec's citizens have ever had a cause to look up and see them.
My contact was a healer of the Temple and explained that the Ordinators might still cause trouble for me and to avoid confrontations. Her advice on the best way to do that was not particularly encouraging. Ordinators were stationed at the two entrances to the Archcanon's private quarters and she suggested sneaking by them via stealth or magic. A second option was to find the private entrance via the canton's canal sub-level and unlock the door. I had arrived with no idea what to expect, but a need to sneak about the sewer system of the Temple canton to meet with the leader of the Temple certainly was not it, but was the path I chose.

The entrance was surprisingly easy to find and my spell unlocked it with no trouble. The Archcanon was not shocked to see a slightly damp armored Khajiit walk into his room and he insisted on immediately speaking about the Temple's doctrine regarding the Nerevarine, a subject he had little to actually say about. His role was that of a facilitator between myself and Lord Vivec, who was really the one who wanted to talk with me after I completed the Trials. The Archcanon gave me a key to Vivec's chamber and hurried me back out the door.

Meeting Vivec was not at all within my expectation for today but I hurried to the Palace of Vivec too quickly to have time for worry about coming face-to-face with someone as close to godhood as I am ever likely to meet. In appearance the man, if you could call him that, is certainly striking: half of him appears Dunmer and half what I can only guess is the ancient and disappeared Chimer race. A blue flame constantly burns about his head, though he seems untroubled by it and it gave off no heat I could feel. 
His voice sounded like it a chorus of Dunmer speaking just slightly out of unison, but he was easy to understand. I would like to have recorded in my journal the whole of our conversation, but he said too much to be able to write all of it down.

He immediately stated that he would end the persecution of the Dissident Priests and of the Nerevarine, proclaiming that I, in name, am the reincarnation of Lord Nerevar  and the last hope to defend Morrowind from Dagoth Ur. Quite a gesture on his part. He then gave me the choice of accepting the responsibility of defeating Dagoth Ur or not...a question which felt slightly out of order to me. I have come too far now and done too much to not accept and my reward was a Dwemer gauntlet he called 'Wraithguard'. 

His plan to defeat Dagoth Ur sounds deceptively simple: fetch two artifacts (weapons called Sunder and Keening) from Dwemer ruins at Red Mountain, then use the two artifacts, while protecting myself with Wraithguard, to destroy Dagoth Ur's source of power within the core of Red Mountain. I am greatly summarizing the actual plan of course, the details of the plan's execution are my responsibility.

He provided four scrolls to me, but it felt rude to read each one while he waited for me. I will read them diligently tomorrow and build my own plan as to how to implement Vivec's strategy. 

One would think this would be the end of my day, but it was not so: it was only early afternoon when I walked out of Vivec's chambers. Once again I teleported back to Ald'ruhn and deposited Vivec's gifts in my house. Surprisingly, Galsa had a new update for me. The construction of the stronghold has been completed and I now had to hire guards to garrison it. She recommended I speak with the drillmaster of the Ald'ruhn Fighters Guild, an imperial named Percius Mercius, who would probably know of a few Redoran warriors looking for employment.

Of course, nothing is as simple as it should be. Percius did know of several guards looking for work, but would not recommend me to them until I broke a friend of his out of prison deep within the Hlaalu canton in Vivec. The arrangement did not seem an equal trade to me, but I had little choice but to accept.

Freeing his friend wound up being a lot easier than I anticipated. The Hlaalu prison was open to visitors and staffed only by a single Ordinator. I was allowed to speak with Percius's friend,  Frelene Acques and she was confident of being able to make her way out if I provided her the key to the cell. Hlaalu must be more accustomed to their criminals buying their way out of jail, for their security precautions were laughable: they key to the cells was on a table at the far side of the room. The Ordinator busied himself with a scroll on the jailer's desk on the other side of the room, so it was a simple task to walk to the table and slip the key into my hand on my way by. The Ordinator never even looked up from the scroll he was reading and completely failed to notice one of his two prisoners receiving they key to her cell.

I told Percius that his friend would be meeting him in a few days and he took my word for it, declaring that he would send the best of the unemployed fighters to live at my stronghold. And that was the end of what should have been a much longer tale. Galsa said she would start the next phase of my stronghold construction after I told her the guards would be there shortly. How long this phase will last and what strange tasks will be required of me remains to be seen.

By then it was late into the evening of a very long day, so I have retired home earlier than usual. Tomorrow I will go over all the documents Vivec has provided and come up with a plan of my own to defeat Dagoth Ur.

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