In Which Kendeshel Slays a Whole Lot of Vampires (2024)

Swinging back around finally to Kendeshel’s stalled playthrough in Skyrim! This session is from January 27th of this year, and features a lot of side questing to find items for Legacy of the Dragonborn; running the Laid to Rest plot in Morthal, and taking out the vampires in Movarth’s Lair; and claiming Bloodchill Manor, by way of taking out the vampires there, too.

Play by play

  • Play date: 1/27/2024
  • Session number in this run: 38
  • Picked up again at the Safehouse
  • Slept the night after doing a little inventory cleanup
  • Went out to the airship, but decided I actually wanted to do an overland ride around the map
  • But of course I got a frigging Revered Dragon coming around into Solitude from the airship dock
  • Took it out along with city guards, and did potshots from up by the forge
  • From there, turned on a bunch of Legacy-related side quests in my quest journal to see how many I could track down
  • Derped around on horseback near Solitude for a bit until I realized that one of the pointers for the Weapons of the Crusaders plot was pointing inside of Solitude
  • So went back into the city, and discovered an enchanted locked chest in the Temple of the Divines; I needed a special ring to get into that
  • Found Lucia near the bones of the dragon I’d just killed, and she hit me up for an allowance, so I gave her 1,000 gold
  • (Might take you a bit longer to spend that here, kiddo, this is Solitude, it’s pricier than Whiterun! Have fun spending it!)
  • Set out again, this time cutting through Dragon Bridge and Frost River
  • Just past Fort Snowhawk, veered north to get to Folgunthur
  • Fought a couple of critters en route
  • Found an altar to Baan Dar and activated it, but it refused me as a worshipper because I’m not a Khajiit or a Wood Elf; but I got the display, so that’s all good
  • Reached Folgunthur, found Alvaro’s Tools just outside, and also looted a nearby backpack
  • Tried out the tools, which help you find more keystones amidst fragments and scale off your Archaeology skill
  • Then went in to run Folgunthur, which went quite easily, as I kept summoning Golden Saints to help me fight the draugr
  • Found another Nordic excavation site while in there, and got Archaeology up to 31
  • Took out Mikrul and got the Gauldur Blackblade
  • Got the word for Frost Breath off the wall
  • Got boss loot and got out
  • Headed off in the direction of Bloodchill Cavern to knock acquiring that out off my journal
  • Then realized I hadn’t even been to Morthal with this alt yet, so rode into town
  • Saw the initial cranky townsfolk convo by the Jarl’s longhouse
  • Rode over to claim Myrwatch and slept there
  • Then went over to the inn in the morning to launch the Laid to Rest plot; played that out pretty much as per usual
  • While waiting for it to be dark so I could find Helgi’s coffin, also went over to run the bone wolf necromancer fight, and picked up the bone wolf as a pet
  • Briefly went to Labyrinthian to try to figure out where Shalidor’s Stone was; confirmed it was in Shalidor’s Maze
  • But by then it was late enough in the day that I needed to get back to Morthal to run the rest of the Laid to Rest plot, so returned to the town to do that
  • Threw a Pacify spell on Hroggar in Alva’s house to keep him from fighting me
  • Also paid Jorgen for the hilt of Mehrunes’ Razor while I was there
  • Getting the villagers to come with me to the vampire lair was a little hinky, see below
  • Went over and ran Movarth’s Lair, in No f*cking Around mode, and threw three daedroth at anything in my way
  • After I killed one ancient vampire and nabbed Movarth’s boots, I heard Alva screaming for mercy in the main room
  • Went over to check it out, and yep she was in cower mode and didn’t seem interested in attacking me, so I left her alone
  • Returned to Morthal to check in with the Jarl, and got the pointer to become thane
  • Hit Labyrinthian in earnest this time
  • Ran Shalidor’s Maze and found the stone partway through the first section
  • Also got the word for Dismay off the Word Wall at the end, and the Diadem of the Savant
  • From there, decided to aim for getting the Ring of Sir Amiel, for getting into the chests for the Crusaders gear side quest
  • This required me to head up near Pilgrim’s Trench
  • The location for the ring turned out to be an unmarked spot I’d seen before, with the skeleton and a tattered banner up on an icy ledge
  • The new content stuck the ring in a strongbox by the skeleton, with a bit of a journal explaining what was going on
  • While there, also had a Revered Dragon attack me, the second dragon in the session; took that out with some work
  • Headed over to Pilgrim’s Trench and confirmed that yes, I was going to have to dive for Merrian’s Spyglass
  • Found the wreck underwater with Merrian’s body, and got the spyglass; also nabbed the journal that almost floated off, before my Waterbreathing spell ran out
  • Found a couple of shells on the beaches while doing this part of the run, and only determined by looking on the wiki what shells are actually useful for in Legacy, i.e., the tidepool display
  • Next, headed over to go claim Bloodchill Manor
  • Found a shrine to Talos on the way and stopped to pray at that, to unlock the display for it
  • But declined to follow Talos, since still on Team Julianos
  • Killed a single bandit just outside the cavern
  • Bloodchill Manor likewise not much of a problem, let the daedroth do most of the work there too
  • Set out from there to go find a couple more Crusader items
  • One was in Duskglow Crevice, which was one of the few remaining places in the entire game I hadn’t actually set foot in yet
  • Found a few surviving bandits in there fighting assorted Falmer
  • Found a Falmer excavation site in there as well
  • Cleared the place, and found the Crusader item in another enchanted chest
  • Only belatedly realized that whoops, yes, I do actually have to put the ring on to be able to get into the chest
  • Next stop: Heljarchen, since another quest marker wanted me to go there for another Crusader item
  • This one turned out to be a chest in the cellar at Nightgate Inn
  • So I rented a room for 10 gold, just because it seemed only polite to do so if I was going to wander around the place 😉
  • Hit the barrel behind the inn for the journal for the Brothers in Irons plot while I was there
  • Lastly tried to find another Crusader item, but that one turned out to be in Tolvald’s Cave; by then it was pretty late, and I didn’t feel like running the place
  • Boinged back to Solitude and grabbed the Crusader item in the Temple of the Divines
  • While doing that, passed old Octieve, who told me his daughter had died
  • At which point I went WHAT, because apparently that first dragon must have taken out Evette 😢
  • RIP Evette, sorry that dragon torched you
  • Checked in at Proudspire
  • Found the girls fighting and they ran outside to chase each other, even though it was like 2 in the morning
  • Slept upstairs to get the bonuses (also, HI RULNIK, m’love)
  • Went over to the museum and did a bunch of display and inventory managing
  • Set up the Crusader items I had so far, though I retained the ring until I could finish that quest
  • Placed the Diadem of the Savant and Shalidor’s Stone on display, since I was pretty sure I wouldn’t use either of them
  • Made a bunch of armor since I had the mats for it, and finished up the armory displays for Nordic, Glass, and Orcish armor
  • And since I’d found some ebony gauntlets, that let me finish up the Ebony display as well
  • Made a replica for the Totem Bone for the bone wolf and displayed that
  • Saved there until next time

Yet another frigging Solitude dragon

This session for Kendeshel, from back at the tail end of January of this year, started off the same way a lot of her sessions often do: with a frigging dragon strafing Solitude. 🤦🏼‍♀️

I took it out, of course, with the help of the city guards. And according to my notes, I got in several potshots on it from up around the forge. I think at the time I must have been wanting to make sure the damned dragon didn’t take out another Solitude blacksmith?

I wasn’t able to determine at the time if it took out any more named NPCs. But as per my notes, I did find out later that that dragon had taken out Evette, Octieve’s daughter. 😢 Old dude’s going to have to find some other way to keep himself fed and drinking, I guess?

Assorted side questing for Legacy of the Dragonborn artifacts

I’m finding myself a bit on the fence about the huge number of side quests that Legacy of the Dragonborn offers the player, along the lines of hunting down various artifacts. To be clear, I get that all of that’s entirely in character for the whole point of the mod, don’t get me wrong! I mean, you’re the artifact hunter for the Dragonborn Gallery, so it stands to reason that you should, in fact, be hunting for artifacts. And I am in no way, shape, or form, objecting to that as a concept.

But as of Kendeshel’s last few sessions, I’ve found my patience getting stretched a bit with all of it, regardless. As I’ve written before, I have only so much patience in any game, not just Skyrim, for going over an area with a fine-toothed comb in the hopes of finding one hard to find object. Or figuring out a complicated puzzle. Or trudging off to an entirely different location to get a key so that I’m able to trudge back to the first place, and unlock the thing that needs to be unlocked so that I can get the object I was there for to begin with.

Though to be fair, I think I probably stacked the deck against myself by turning on a bunch of those quests in my journal at once. It definitely made it a bit burdensome to have to parse. I think my patience for such things is improved if I don’t have two dozen quest markers all yelling for my attention all over the map. Once I resume Kendeshel’s sessions, I’ll need to remember that and activate side quests for her more judiciously.

Running Laid to Rest in Morthal

This mostly went the same as previous playthroughs, but there were a few notable exceptions.

First off, this time through while breaking into Alva’s house to get her journal, I threw a Pacify spell on Hroggar to keep him from fighting me. This naturally resulted in his surviving my visit to the house!

Second, getting the villagers to go with me to fight the vampires in the lair was a little hinky. While we were heading out, something showed up to distract them as well as the town guards into combat mode. But there was no sign of an incoming dragon.

My best guess was maybe slaughterfish in the water, but I didn’t know for sure. I didn’t see anything obvious at all around that could have set off all the NPCs.

Third, it was kind of hilarious coming in there at Kendeshel’s high power level, especially after running both Project AHO and the Ruins of Winterhold plot. Which meant I was capable of summoning three daedroth at once. I took shameless advantage of this, and threw the daedroth squad at anything in my way, including Movarth. I wound up having to directly confront only one vampire, since a few rounds of daedroth eventually took Movarth out without my having to touch him.

Lastly, Alva herself also survived the plot. While running Movarth’s lair, I heard her screaming for mercy in the central area of the lair, right around the table. And when I came over to investigate, I found her in cower mode and non-hostile. This was as opposed to her behavior that I observed in Finds-The-Way’s run, where Alva actively fought the other vampires!

Since I’d already noted during Finds’ session that the wiki said attacking a non-hostile Alva in Movarth’s lair would be considered a crime, I left her alone.

But as with Finds’ playthrough, it raises a real interesting question about how well Jarl Idgrod would respond to both Alva and Hroggar surviving this whole affair! I would like to hope that Hroggar would stay out of her clutches. But I have a hard time buying that Alva would remain at liberty in the town, and I’d have to expect that Hroggar would have to bend over backwards to prove to his fellow citizens that he could still be a productive member of their society. At the very least, I can’t imagine he’d have much luck ever finding another wife.

Merrian’s Spyglass

I kind of liked fetching this object, since it was interesting to have to dive down into Pilgrim’s Trench and search the wreckage down there. And I did have to giggle a bit at the idea of how Merrian’s journal remained legible after being submerged in icy water. Clearly, at least some bookbinders of Skyrim have a lock on extremely durable paper. 😀

That said, I’m not sure I much see the point of the spyglass yet. Apparently it’s to give you a way to put quest markers on shells to make them easier to spot, as you gather them for the tidepool display in the museum. I need to practice with this a bit, but it may need to wait until Kendeshel makes it to Solstheim. Or the Brothers in Irons plot, or Dawnguard, whichever comes first. Whatever plot gets her back to the beaches along the Sea of Ghosts, basically.

Bloodchill Manor

Running this place at Kendeshel’s high level, and especially with the aforementioned daedroth squad, was very easy. LOL. Take that, vampire waiter!

This time through, I spent a little extra time casing the place, just to see if I could find anything interesting in it for display purposes. Answer: no.

But it was still also nice to be able to sleep the night there for RP purposes, since it did have me out of the elements! Which also makes me think, it’d be nice to be able to bring mounts inside the cavern. It seems mean to leave whatever horse you may be riding out in the cold. You never know what frost troll, wolf pack, ice wraith, bandits, or dragon might happen along, after all!

Skyrim in general though doesn’t let you bring horses into caves. So it doesn’t surprise me that Bloodchill Cavern is no exception. Narrative-wise, though, I expect any Dragonborn I run would absolutely try to see if their mount could be safely brought into the cavern. Not only to get them out of the direct cold and exposure to hostile beasts or bandits, but also because there’s water in there.

Duskglow Crevice

It’s very rare at this point for me to hit a location in Skyrim I haven’t seen before. But I actually did so this session, by hitting Duskglow Crevice.

It turned out to be a Falmer hive, not surprisingly given that it’s mostly a cave. But it turned out to also have a fairly sturdy bandit hideout in there, too. And it’s also still got at least a couple of living bandits in it when you arrive. It was clear upon my entering that the place was set up to be another location where there was ongoing conflict between bandits and Falmer. I like finding those, it makes for a bit more lively situation than just “this cave is full of Falmer”.

And even though the wiki calls it a “small cave”, I found it to have a surprisingly complex layout.

Next time

Kendeshel’s next post will feature my going ahead with visiting Tolvald’s Cave; doing a whole lot of side questing, both for base game Skyrim stuff and Anniversary Edition stuff; turning in Grelod the Kind and pissing off the Dark Brotherhood, and then destroying them; and last but not least, running the Rkund expedition for Legacy of the Dragonborn!

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In Which Kendeshel Slays a Whole Lot of Vampires (2024)
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