642. Double, double toil and trouble

Few people live day to day without some sense of a continuing story, a pathway to either Aetherius or Oblivion. Nowhere in Tamriel was that more evident then in the Temple District of the Imperial City, said to be the home of a thousand cults. The only real difference between a cult and a religion is political advocacy, and whilst the Temple of the One may for now still be dedicated to Akatosh, the longer this Daedric occupation lasts, the greater the prospect that it becomes rededicated to Molag Bal; and the Worm Cult may become not only a religion, but the only religion.

642 (c). Double, double toil and trouble

Sister J’Reeza has watched on helplessly as the Daedra have desecrated temples, smashed relics, and imprisoned clergy. She now has a plan however to stop the monsters from destroying more religious artefacts, yet rather ironically it requires the use of old pagan magics The Khajiit priestess wants me to kill Grievous Twilights that roam the streets and cut off their claws. After anointing them with ritual wine and then burning them in a sanctified brazier, I am to sprinkle their ashes over casks of consecrated oils which should be enough to save them from the impious claws of the Daedra.

642 (d). Double, double toil and trouble

When I think of witchcraft, my first thoughts turn either to the foul hags of the Reach, or the somewhat fairer, yet not no less ill-disposed Wyrd Covens of High Rock. There is something to be admired about a people who when most in need wait not upon a miracle from the Divines, but instead provide themselves with miracles of their own making.


641. When sorrows come

The Drake of Blades has a spy within the Legion Zero, Captain Regilus, but he has not made contact for a few weeks and she fears he may have succumbed to the effects of the Blood of Coldharbour; a foul daedric brew that members of Legion Zero are forced to drink.

641 (c). When sorrows come

At his sewer hideout within the Elven District, I discover Regilus is holding out against the corruption of the brew thanks mainly to antidotes and willpower, though he admits he is slowly losing the battle. He has recently learnt that in their search for a particular relic the Daedra have found a key to an ancient door somewhere beneath the city. If we were to simply steal this key then the daedra would know that we work against them, so he suggests a little espionage. He wants me to forge a copy of this key to replace the real one, thus giving us more time to learn about this relic that Molag Bal seeks.

A Xivkyn named Zolgar the Brutal guards the key in a counting house and whilst the captain distracts him I swap the key for the fake one. After a brief conversation however Regilus rather unnecessarily stabs Zolgar. Perhaps it was the corruption taking hold that led to so rash an action; the Drake had warned that he had seemed more angry and erratic of late. Yet I think it may have been something more; not so much an impetuous act of aggression, more a contrived act of desperation. I believe he has just had enough of his struggle, for he would know better then anyone that with the killing of the Xivkyn he betrayed himself.

641 (i). When sorrows come

Once I had the key and his final report for the Drake he downs a bottle of poison, killing himself. At his end there seemed to be something more he wanted to say to the Drake, but could not find the words. I imagine its a very lonely thing to be a spy, to have all your friendships to be no more than deceptions.

641 (j). When sorrows come

When I informed the Drake of his death It is clear she too felt more for Regilus then she herself was able to say; one cannot mask such heartache. Behind those eyes I saw a woman trapped within her own pain, suffering such sorrow yet knowing not how to express it, and thus she cannot escape it.


640. The Ruby Damned

Which traitor is the more accursed, the traitor to their country, the traitor to humanity, or the traitor to their own soul?

When Molag Bal’s Dark Anchors fell upon the City Isle, we may have survived their assault, we may have broken their siege upon the city gates, and our returning legions may have repelled the daedric horde back to Oblivion… but for the traitors. An army can survive cowardly comrades and foolish leadership, let us never forget that it was the Empress Regent Clivia Tharn who first expelled the Mages Guild and gave the Worms free reign, but it cannot survive treason from within.

Legion Zero is a smear, a besmirch, a desecration of the Ruby Ranks. They sold their morality, and their comrades for what turned out to be nothing more then a false promise, and now they are but Shriven slaves. The Elven Gardens, once the residential district of the city, has been turned into their garrison from where they produce the siege weapons that have pounded the other districts into submission. Such traitors are hated even by those to whom they coo, and it is clear even here that they serve under the boots of the Xivkyn.

640 (e). The Ruby Damned

I meet a former Legionary engineer Quintia Rullus, herself once a traitor, a deserter to the fourth legion, yet she chose to stay within the city when she could have fled and now enlists others in her efforts to halt the city’s destruction by Legion Zero’s siege weaponry. She requests my help in burning their ballistae, and damaging their Great Forge.

They say that in life we are all just waiting for moments to redeem ourselves, and whilst Quintia Rullus was a traitor to her country, it is not this that defines her, it is the way she is making her amends. The Empress Regent Clivia Tharn was a traitor to humanity, yet rumour is rife in the sewers that she who sits atop the Ruby Throne may not be whom she seems, and the true fate of the Empress Regent may never be known. The Legion Zero are traitors to their own souls, for they are Shriven and belong now and forever more to Molag Bal. For those accursed traitors, there can be no redemption.

640 (d). The Ruby Damned


639. This most ignoble arena

639 (a). This most ignoble arena

The slogan on the flyers used to read ‘the Imperial City arena was only for the bravest of the brave’, yet as I recall nobody set foot in the arena if they had an alternative. And those that did fight, fought for one thing only, their freedom, whether that be from captivity or poverty. That was one of the reasons why legionnaires that served in the Imperial City would never go to watch the arena fights, the other was because to us it was a punishment. If a city serving legionnaire was accused of cowardice or some other dishonourable crime, then the disgraced would be sent to the arena to fight with the gladiators and the criminals. Yet these filthy daedra have managed to drag the arena to new ignominious depths. Seemingly having run out of soldiers and gladiators they have now resorted to sending in ordinary citizens to battle against their champions. These innocents are not sacrificing themselves for some honourable cause or greater good, they are being sacrificed, and there is nothing noble in that.

The condemned citizens are held prisoner in cages throughout the district, yet a legionnaire named Valga Atrius claims she can smuggle them out of the city, she just needs someone brave or foolhardy enough to free them from their daedric shackles. Of course I offer to help, and am gladdened to find many other adventurers roaming the district have also rallied to her cause; for strength is no blessing at all unless it is used to protect the innocent. But it is not enough…

639 (e). This most ignoble arena639 (f). This most ignoble arena639 (g). This most ignoble arena

Whilst the innocent are dragged timorously into the arena to face an inequitable battle to the death, I walk in brazenly with my head held high. I shall not bow to any champions of this most ignoble arena, instead I shall greet them with sword, scorn, and fury. For the savage truth is that if we are to overcome this iniquitous incursion from Oblivion then it is not enough that we be willing to die for our freedom, we also must be willing to kill for it.


638. Spies and skeletons never sleep

638 (a). Spies and skeletons never sleep

The Memorial District of the Imperial City is one of the largest cemeteries in all Tamriel, yet is was not so long ago that this was in fact the site of perhaps Tamriel’s largest market. It seems unimaginable now but from these very streets you could procure almost anything you ever needed or wanted. The old Market District was always crowded as pedlars would travel from across the empire to sell their wares. Every day was market day where could buy anything from spices to potions, cloths to jewellery, weapons to books and all sorts of exotic foods; and at night the services of all manner of exotic women and men. Of course despite the Legions presence such successful commerce attracted the attentions of the criminal classes, so it is no surprise that the entrance to the Imperial Prisons was also to be found here.

But then five years ago the market became the site of the fierce final battle in Varen’s Rebellion against the Longhouse Emperors that left this district in utter ruins. In the aftermath it was decided that rather then extradite the thousands of gallant fallen on both sides, they would bury them where they fell. Such was the size of the mass graves that no room remained to rebuild the market so the entire district became a graveyard, eventually to be renamed the Memorial District. The memories of those thousands, their lives, their feelings, their expectations, their disappointments, their loves, their passions and their pains, all that they were has now departed from here; and all that is left is their bodies imprisoned in the cemetery grounds. But now Worm Cultists have taken control of the district and have risen skeletal labourers that dig ceaselessly to unearth more bones to be outfitted in soldiers armour.

638 (d). Spies and skeletons never sleep

A Legionnaire by the name of Legate Gallus has a unique proposal to discover the cultists plans for this bone army by spying upon them using something he calls “auricular geodes”. Apparently these dormant stones are somehow attuned to Coldharbour and can be empowered once again by the killing of Xivkyn. Once active all we need to do is plant them upon the skeletal labourers digging in the cemetery.

The Drake however has noticed that some skeletons have been guided away from the mass grave sites to work in other hidden areas of the district. She suggests I search for a Daedric Brand to use upon a skeleton in the Chapel of Arkay so we might discover what Molag Bal and his worms have their minions digging for.

638 (g). Spies and skeletons never sleep

The branded skeleton mentions a ‘Dragonfire Cathedral’, and “snuffing out the light”. The Drake remembers a story told of Saint Alessia receiving a vision from Akatosh at an Ayleid shrine beneath the city. Her followers were said to have later torn down the shrine and built a cathedral in its place to house a powerful relic. But the Drake believes this little more then a folktale as no scholar has found any evidence beyond anecdote. She did however manage to retrieve a map from a cultist showing that the skeletal labourers are being directed to dig up a nearby crematorium.

Whether we believe this cathedral to be real or not, going to the crematorium and demolishing their dig site will at least buy us some time to investigate further what this light is that Molag Bal is so anxious to snuff out.

638 (j). Spies and skeletons never sleep