Ebony and Snow Chapter 1 Part 1

She slowly released her breath, released the grip on the longbow in her hands and felt the rush of air as the arrow sped towards the large wolf. The creature was already panting heavily, the left side of its snout a bloody mess thanks to Zora’s two handed sword. The wooden shaft travelled true, its iron point piercing sinew and bone to impale itself in the beast’s heart. It gave one last beat then gave out. The wolf collapsed in a heap, twitched one last time and settled into a puddle of its lifeblood that grew beneath it.

‘Great shot Deana,’ chirped Vilja. Her perfect countenance marred by three deep claw marks across her left cheek.

‘Bah. Get in close next time,’ barked Zora. ‘Get your hands dirty elf!’ A blue shimmering was testament to a protective spell she had cast on herself wearing off as she kneeled down by the wolf’s corpse and drew her hunting knife ready to skin the beast.

‘Big un aint it,’ said Deanthala. ‘Hunters Guild in Whiterun wasn’t lying.’ Indeed it was not and it was on a commission for that guild that Deanthala and her companions had been scouring the hills above Riverwood for the better part of the morning. A bounty had been posted in the Guild in The Drunken Huntsman in response to the people of Riverwood’s plea to rid the area of a large wolf preying on livestock. They had been able to corner the beast against the mountain side high above the village and would now be returning victorious.

Drinks in The Sleeping Giant were courtesy of Orgnar, having had lost his horse to the wolf. The beast’s pelt was displayed for all to see and an very inebriated Vilja fell off the bar while dancing ‘like they do in Solsthiem!

(OT She actually does this when plied with drink).

Deana sat in a corner and updated her Journal. Not knowing much of her Past she had promised herself a record of her Present, a way of not losing herself. She her noted some other bounties the Hunter’s Guild had posted. Her need to feel part of something made her want to support the Guild and if that meant these menial tasks then so be it.

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It seemed a little mud crab clearing would be in order in a shrine dedicated to Zenithar in the tundra to the West of Whiterun. Vilja’s drunken singing took her attention away from her journal and she could not help but join in with the raucous clapping that accompanied the Nord woman’s songs.

OT – I am using the Hunting in Skyrim mod by B1gBadDaddy to get the Hunter’s Guild

Ebony and Snow Prelude

Deanthala…a name that seems more Altmer than Dunmer, not surprising as she was brought up by two of the golden skinned elves not by her own ebony skinned people.

She doesn’t know much of her own Past. Yes she has heard snippets of a shipwreck in the Sea of Ghosts. Of a cradle being washed up on some distant shore. Her earliest memories are of cold air, mountain pines and deep snow. Kind golden eyes, so polar opposite to her own violet orbs. Violet hues that are also mirrored in her hair, contrasting exquisitely with the ebony tinge of her native skin. A village, thatched roofs, a small cottage set just outside the human community. A small cottage she returns to one day from the Wilds to find blood and torn bodies. Golden eyes now dark and dead, having lost their spark. Strange arrows strewn across the cottage walls, more blood inside flowing from a deeply cut throat.

Numb, speechless, cold, empty. No one wants to help the dark elf. The humans turn insular, the word ‘Forsworn’, she is turned away. Barely having come of age she returns to the blood spattered cottage and tries to give her parents – a funny concept to her but these Altmer were the only ones she knew – as much dignity as possible in death.

Being a child of the Northern Woods she turns to them for comfort learning first to survive and then thrive in the harsh Skyrim climate. Her bow her best friend, the stars her canopy, the forest her home. She hears about the Forsworn, about their struggle but she only wants revenge. She travels ever Southwards, a place Whiterun – a great hold with great opportunities – great forest, tall and warm.

She keeps to the woods and forests, to what she knows. Whiterun seems the largest place in the world to her. Walls of stone, a large palace atop a majestic hill – so many people. The weeks alone have made her nervous yet as the days pass she welcomes company again. A majestic beauty going by the name of Vilja befriends her in a tavern she had been staying at called the Bannered Mare. Together they begin to travel the lands around Whiterun. Her strong violet locks contrasting with the Nordic blonde of her companion.

They rescue another Nord seemingly trapped in Brittleshin Pass by some Necromancers. On odd native of Riverwood called Zora Fair-Hand. For lack of anything better to do she agrees to become a shield companion to Deanthala and Vilja. A third Nord, a woman named Lydia in the employ of the Jarl also joins their party as they seek adventure and fame. For the first time Deana, as they call her, experiences companionship and fellowship. A sense of belonging in this land of contrasts…

Ebony and Snow. Deana and Vilja

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OT I am using Vilja in Skyrim Mod, Interesting NPC’s and UFO to allow the variety in followers and to allow me to construct some sort of adventuring party. I will reference any mods that will have an impact on the direct storyline.

Skyrim: A New Life

Chapter 2 Part 6

Wolfskull Cave was to be a much sterner test than what Se’rith had ever imagined it to be. It turned that out that several Necromantic cults jad banded together to bring about the reincarnation of Potema the Wolf Queen, a powerful Necromancer of old. An eerie feeling of dread fell upon both Dunmer as they crossed the cave’s shadowy threshold. They disposed of a young Bosmer Necromancer that guarded a portcullis leading  deeper into the cave. Well, a cave that housed a whole ruined tower around which evil magics flowed. Ethereal wind carried dark glyphs to an apex above the a tower and every now and again a powerful female voice boomed across the cavern urging its followers to complete the ritual as her transfer into this world was almost complete. Not only would any return of Potema be a danger to the College, it would be a danger to Skyrim as a whole. As Archmage it would be her sworn duty to thwart any attempt at resurrecting the Wolf Queen.

 

Se’rith and Brelyna were met at every turn by Potema’s servants as they battled against them with fire, ice and claw. Undead minions lurched against them as reeking zombies and rambling skeletons tried to stop the ascent of the College Mages. The closer they got to the main tower the more frantic the chanting became and one female voice in particular rose in pitch and frenzy above all others. Darting in and out of the battlements atop the tower, Se’rith got a glimpse of a wizened old face framed by wispy, spent white hair. Murky red magic surrounded her clenched fists as she conducted the ritual to its conclusion.

The final fight atop the tower was a bloody and merciless affair. The crone was flanked by two younger apprentices that she ordered to her death at the end of Se’rith’s Lightning Bolts. Their deaths were met with insane cackles and one was even raised by the cruel witch to fight again in undeath. Yet numbers and power soon prevailed as both Dunmer were able to dispatch the undead minion and the witch. As Se’rith burned a hole through the necromancer’s chest the ritual stopped with a violence neither Dunmer expected. Blue light expanded across the whole of the cavern, the light hung for a moment before disappearing in a massive explosion of light and sound. A loud roar, half wolf howl, half female shriek made the dark elves cower in pain. However as soon as it has started the noise and bedlam stopped. Examining a bloody and gore filled altar Se’rith saw a wolf image etched into the stone and painted in blood. As she hovered her hand over it her mind ached with an image and feeling of supreme evil, an after image of a snarling wolf’s blood stained maw imprinting on her mind.

 

They emerged from Wolfskull Cave via a small tunnel leading from a platform next to the tower apex. They stopped for a moment to bask in the warmth of the sun, the city of Solitude and its Arch in the distance.

 

Skyrim Patch 1.4 is out!

Skyrim Patch 1.4 is out and the Construction Kit is hot on its tail and I for one cannot wait for the modders to improve this already epic game. If you are using the Skryrim Script Extender do not forget to get the latest, compatible version from here.

 

Change Log for Patch:

NEW FEATURES

  • Skyrim launcher support for Skyrim Workshop (PC)

BUG FIXES

  • General optimizations for memory and performance
  • Fixed occasional issue with armor and clothing not displaying properly when placed on mannequins in player’s house (PS3)
  • Long term play optimizations for memory and performance (PS3)
  • Improved compiler optimization settings (PC)
  • Memory optimizations related to scripting
  • Fixed issue with dangling scripts not properly clearing from memory
  • Fixed crashes related to pathing and AI
  • Fixed crash in “Haemar’s Shame” if player had already completed “A Daedra’s Best Friend”
  • Fixed rare crash with loading saved games
  • Fixed issue with accented characters not displaying properly at the end of a line
  • Fixed issue where dragon priest masks would not render correctly
  • Fixed issue where quests would incorrectly progress after reloading a save
  • Fixed issues with placing and removing books from bookshelves in the player’s home
  • Optimized bookshelf script in player-owned houses that would occasionally block other scripts from properly firing off
  • Fixed issue where weapon racks and plaques would not work correctly in player’s house if player immediately visits their house before purchasing any upgrades
  • Fixed issue where the player house in Windhelm would not clean up properly
  • Fixed crash related to giant attacks and absorb spells
  • Fixed issue with ash piles not cleaning up properly
  • Fixed occasional issue where overwriting an existing save would fail
  • Fixed memory crash with container menu
  • Fixed infinite loop with bookshelves
  • Fixed issue where transforming back to human from werewolf would occasionally fail
  • Bows and daggers will display properly when placed on weapon racks
  • Fixed occasional audio issue that would play sound effects louder than intended
  • Fixed bug related to hitching between cell boundaries
  • Master Criminal achievement/trophy unlocks properly in French, German, Spanish and Italian
  • Fixed issue where traps in Shalidor’s Maze would not work properly in French, German, Spanish and Italian versions

QUEST FIXES

  • The Unusual Gem that was inside the Thalmor Embassy is now accessible after finishing “Diplomatic Immunity”
  • In “Breaching Security”, the quest token is no longer required to receive a fortune reading from Olava the Feeble
  • Fixed issue where Galmar would not complete Joining the Stormcloaks properly if “Season Unending” was an active quest
  • Fixed issue where starting “Season Unending” after finishing “Joining the Stormcloaks” would prevent “The Jagged Crown” from starting properly
  • Fixed issue where progressing through “Message to Whiterun” while “Season Unending” was still open would block progression for both quests
  • In “Arniel’s Endeavor”, fixed issue where a quest journal would trigger multiple times
  • In “Forbidden Legend”, the amulet fragment can no longer disappear after player leaves a dungeon without taking it
  • Fixed rare issue in “Forbidden Legend” where killing Mikrul Gauldurson while sneaking would make his corpse unaccessible
  • In “The White Phial”, the phial can no longer disappear if player leaves dungeon without taking it
  • “The White Phial” will now start properly if player already has a briar heart in their inventory
  • Player can no longer get stuck in Misty Grove after completing “A Night to Remember”
  • Fixed issue where leaving Riften during “A Chance Arrangement” would prevent quest from progressing
  • In “Darkness Returns”, a door in Twilight Sepulcher will properly open if the player leaves the dungeon for an extended period of time before completing the quest
  • In “Revealing the Unseen”, if the player leaves the Oculory for an extended period of time after placing the focusing crystal and returns, the quest will proceed correctly
  • “Onmund’s Request” will now start properly if player has already found Enthir’s staff before receiving this quest
  • Fixed instance where Tonilia would stop buying stolen items and also would not give Guild Leader Armor
  • “Repairing the Phial” will start properly if player already has unmelting snow or mammoth tusk in their inventory
  • Finding Pantea’s Flute before speaking with Pantea no longer prevents her quest from updating
  • In “The Break of Dawn”, fixed rare instance where a quest object would spawn incorrectly on the Katariah during Hail Sithis
  • Fixed rare issue in “The Mind of Madness” where player is unable to equip the Wabbajack
  • Fixed issue in “Pieces of the Past” where Mehrunes Dagon’s Razor will not trigger properly if player leaves the cell for extended period of time before activating it
  • “Blood’s Honor” will start properly if you visited and completed Driftshade and an extended period of time passes before starting the quest.
  • Fixed rare issue where “Dampened Spirits” would not start properly
  • Fixed issue where player would be unable to become Thane of Riften if they purchased a home first
  • Fixed issue where killing guards in Cidhna Mine would block progression for “No One Escapes Cidhna Mine”
  • Fixed numerous issues with “Blood on the Ice” not triggering properly
  • In “Blood on the Ice”, Calixto can now be killed if player owns a house in Windhelm
  • In “The Cure for Madness”, killing Cicero then resurrecting him no longer impedes quest progress
  • Fixed rare issue in “To Kill an Empire” where an NPC would fail to die properly
  • Clearing Knifepoint Ridge before starting “Boethiah’s Champion” no longer prevents quest from starting.

Skyrim Patch 1.3

Skyrim’s new 1.2 patch seems to have addressed the most pertinent issues arising out of Patch 1.2.

Dragons are now flying in the right direction and resistances seem to have been fixed. So far, had a good three hour session on Wednesday and no issues at all. Bethesda is also promising a bigger patch fixing a lot the Quest glitches. The Creation Kit is also being released in January which means MODS 😀

So set your Steam back to Online mode, download and happy playing.