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Hasir hit something solid upon his exit from the portal. He looked over to his companions who were just as confused as he was why

Scruut chose this location to have deposit them like a bunch of unwanted dead cows. Hasir groaned and got to his feet. He could

hear the watchling laughing and muttering to herself. He stood up and snarled at her.

"Scruut, you bastard, you could've conjured the exit portal a little to the left. I felt like a fly on the side of a carriage."

He walked over to her and looked sideways at her, failing to find this minor error in trajectory funny.

"Did you hear me? May I ask why you are laughing?" A vision of a daedra laughing while a caged mortal was lowered into a pit of

Oblivion swam before his mind's eye. He shook this rather disconcerting vision off and realized he still had the book 'Filaments and

Filagree' still clutched in his vice-like grip. He looked uncertainly at it and then to the watchling. "Scruut, Are you sure this book can

be deciphered?"

The watchling nodded, grabbed the book from the Argonian, opened it and continued where she left off.

"The book of fate... I already told you that... let's see... yes, it tells where to find the book of fate. Let's see... to the north of the

continent blanketed with white lay a city equally as cold as the people in it. The location of the book that discerns one's path in life

can be found where a butcher dwells.

Scruut closed the book and stared at Hasir who looked forlorn and pensive.

"The book can be found where a butcher dwells? What does that mean?"

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Xelzaz cut across Scruut as she stared to speak; All of her eyes glared at him. He apologized and asked to see the book. Hasir

handed it over to him.

"I think I am starting to understand something." He said. Hasir and Scruut stared at him. "After salvaging the items, assuming the

book we seek is not moved or positioned in some way that is unobtainable, will the book describe how to end Molag Bal?"

Scruut shrugged - at least, to the Argonian, it looked like a shrug.

"I dunno... I think only Hermaeus Mora can answer that. He isn't her though so we can only go on congecture. My best guess is the

book will remain blank to all but Hasir - as this is his fate to destroy the prince of domination." Her eyes narrowed, deep in thought.

She gestured for Hasir and Xelzaz to stop gaped at her like dried fish and start heading toward the snowy city.

Hasir held up a hand and insisted they do one thing at a time.

"We came here for a reason. Remember the map we saw at Halted Stream camp? It showed three destinations. We already cut open

the silverhand. Maybe now we can deal the final blow at Karthspire camp, assuming they are indeed there and we're not just

chasingshadows.Speaking of shadows, I hope we do not run into the black khajiit here. If we do, prepare for a fight." He said with a

darkedge to his voice. "If we are fast enough,we cansneak in, get the items and be out of there before the Doomstrider shows up."

Thetelvanni Argonian and watchling noddedandfollowed him as he led the way to the camp just to the west of Markarth. When they

arrived at the cam[, Hasir used his wolf to 'see' if their was any immediate danger they should be aware of. Twilight saw forsworn

outfitted in fur armorpatrolling the perimeter of the camp and a few khajiit sitting around a small campfire, but couldn't see any sign

of the silver hand or the Doomstrider.

Scruut looked sidelong at Hasir, scratching her head like a khajiit that had a flea problem.

"Does... he do this alot? I have no idea what is going on." She said confusedly

Xelzaz barked a laugh which caught Scruut offguard. She thought he knew something she wasn't privy to.

"Wait..." She said even more confused as if they were putting on an act. "What are you not telling me?" She said, putting her largest

tentacles on her 'hips.'

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Hasir blinked forcefully as his wolf went back into its cage. He glanced over to the apocryphal watchling.

"Scruut, erm... why are you looking at Xelzaz and I like that? I can project my wolf, Twilight, outinto the world to scout ahead and

act as a sort of mental link, a spiritual projection if you will, that way I can keep my physical self hidden while my spirit spots any

danger. For me, that way is definitely better than running blindly into a situation."

Scruut looked away from Xelzaz and stared, wide-eyed, at Hasir wanting to know more about this rather unique ability.

"So, what you saying is you can project your spirit? Is this something all mortals can do?"

Hasir laughed and waved a clawed hand in the air while his tail rose and fell like a snake.

"No, only I have this ability. I was taught it as part of my dragonknight training on Akavir."

Hasir told everyone to stay put while he go see if the khajiit were friendly. His companions did as he asked. He weaved between

rocks like a python that sighted a tasty skeever. He peered out from behind the rock he was hiding behind and saw a khajiit in fur

armor similar to those worn by forwsorn warriors and spellcasters but his helmet was different. I bore no resemblance to the horned

helmets of the other forsworn. It looked as if a mountain lion decided to decapite itself and fix iys bloody head on top of the

khajiit. Hasir guessed that the blood soaked into the khajiit's fur, like a cloth soaking up mead, thus giving it a red color.

Two thought battled like warriors inside the Argonian's head: Go over and attempt to make conversation with the furred stranger or

stay where he was and continue cowering like a hatchling. Ultimately, he built up his courage and went to talk to the khajiit.

"Hi, my name's Hasir, may I ask what yours is?" He asked. His eyes narrowed as he studied the khajiit's rather usual choice of

clothing, "What unusual attire. Did you steal that from a dead forsworn who killed a mountain lion?"

The khajiit propped the stick he was using to cook a piece of venison against a nearby tent, stood up and looked at the Argonian;

proffering his hand,

"Nice to meet you. My name's Nanaki. I am a shaman that hails from the sands of Elsweyr." He turned away from Hasir and eyed the

endless horizon as if yearning to be apart of it, of the energy of Nirn itself. "I did not steal these garments I am wearing but rather

obtained them on my many journeys through this inhospitable land."

Hasir nodded even though he had no idea of Nanaki's background and saw K'hairi sitting by him glancing into the fire, as if in a

trance.

"K'hairi? What on Tamriel-? H-how did you get here?" Hasir asked while his tail flopped about anxiously,"When did you get here?"

K'hairi blinked, breaking her trance-like state, and looked up at her eggbrother.

"I arrived her before you."Five hours ago, in fact. I came here because Kynareth told me that there was a soul, like me, who felt

unwelcome in this land. Shesaid she sensed that I could relate to him." Hasir looked from the Argonian to the Khajiit, not seeing the

connection." K'hairi sighed,"Not in that way, mud for brains." Hasir opened his mouth to berate her for belittling him but he knew

that arguing would get both ofthem nowhere. "I meant that we, Nanaki and I, are constantly trying to obtain a handful of water

from the vast oceans ofunobtainable knowledge but when we bend to drink, the water runs dry as the deserts of Elsweyr."

Hasir look from K'hairi to Nanaki and stared to gain an understand of what she'd meant. The argonian walked over to an empty log

near the mouth of a rather large cave they've yet to explore. He invited Nanaki to sit by him near the campfire.

"So, Nanaki, how did you get that name? As a matter of fact, how did you get that interesting coloration of your fur? I've not seen

many khajiit with red fur, I've seen one with dark blue fur, but never have I seen one with red. Did you get that by the dead

mountain lion infusing you with its blood or is it more complicated than that?"

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Nanaki stared into the fire. Haasir screwed his face up as he tried discerning the images but looked away as the images were too

abstract for his liking.

"I simply killed a mountain lion and donned its fur." He said, shrugging. The crimson khajiit turned away from the fire and stared at

the Argonian."Care to hear how I came to this desolate land?" Hasir nodded and rested his head is his hands. Nanaki returned the

affirmativegesture, "Very well. I was born in the desert continent known as Elsweyr. I was born under a blood moon. Strange, I

know but," Heshrugged, "that's just how the honey nut treat dissolves." Nanaki resumed his thousand yard stare at the dancing

flames, "My villageshunned me because they thought I was 'unclean'." He buried his face in his hands, "Do you know what it's like

to be shunned fromyou own family because of your actions?"

Haisr actually did know what that felt like. He put an arm around Nanaki, comforting him.

"Nanaki, a feline friend of mine Named Inigo shared a similar experiece, like you, he was also shunned from his village because of a

similar skin depigmentation. When he gets here, he can share his experience with you. You can... compare notes."

The red khajiit was about to ask who this khajiit was when he heard hooves coming up the cobblestone road. The horse stopped a

few feet short of where the Argonian and khajiit shaman sat.

"Speak of the devil, here he is now. Nanaki may I introduce you to Inigo. Inigo, Nanaki." He said. he beamed as the two khajiit

shook hands and shared their life stories with one another. Hasir listened intently as the two khajiit talked about their similar

childhoods and the different paths that led them away from their homeland.

K'hairi grabbed the stick Naki had used to cook venison with and poked each of them in the back. They rounded on her angrily

demanding the reason for interrupting them.

"Every second we sit hear flapping our gums is a second that Molag Bal could use to further his goals of the domination of mortals.

I'd like to see what is in that cave," She gestured to the cave mouth behind them, "before the next thaw of spring." She said, a hint

of impatience in her voice. "Well? What areyou waiting for? Shift yourselves!"

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Hasir walked to the mouth of the cave, closely followed by his eggsister and the two khajiit while Xelzaz volunteered tostay outside

to lookout for more Forsworn. The argonian placed a scaly hand on Xelzaz's shoulder. The telvanni Argonian told him tobe careful.

Hasir nodded, entered and gasped as he saw a a torchlit passage akin to the one in the cave beneath the Sleeping Tree. The

passage's twisted and turned, like a meadering stream, to branching passageways the led off to different parts of the cavren.

Hasirlookedfrom Nanaki to Inigo, wondering where to go next. Nanaki knelt down, grasped a loose rock in his clawed hand and saw

a soft, green substance growing on the east side.

"I will go east. You and Inigo go west. Let me know if you find any items of Interest." He glanced upwards and gulped, "Be careful. I

fear that the cavern is unsteady and will not hesitate to make our journey difficult." Good luck to both of you." Both the Argonian and

blue khajiit returned the gesture.

Nanak walked though the eastern branch of the cavern and cast his 'candlelight' spell. The ball of light cut through the darkness like

a knife and fell on grey walled room. Nanaki gasped as, in the middle of the room, were two skeletons; mouths frozen in an eternal

scream, their bodies twisted in agony. The khajiit thought it would be inhumane to go fishing through the belongings of the dead. He

saw that one of the skeletons, a fellow khajiit by the looks of the skull, was pointing to a shrine of a black khajiit with red eyes.

He crept closer to the statue. Nanaki yelped when the eyes of the statue glowed bright as the realm of Oblivon. Bluish-black smoke

vomited forth from the tiny pits of Oblivion and enveloped the bodies of the skeletons like a heavy blanket. Nanaki heard the

creaking of bones behind him, whirled around and unsheathed his bow. He nokced an arrow and fired, groaning when the arrow

whizzed through the khajiit's ribcage.

The red khajiit cursed his stupidity and he pulled an arrow from his quiver, went over to a torch, lit it aflame and fired. The khajiit

skeleton crumbled as it thee flames burned the bones to ash. He trained his bow on a corsep of an Argonian, but the Argonian had

his bony hands aroud his neck as if he was a boney snake. Nanaki struggled to breath and the boney snake tightened it coils about

his trachea. He tried to call out for Hasir but he knew that the Argonian presumably had troubles of his own.

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Hasir took the western branch of the cavren and smelled the acrid stench of decaying bodies. The argonian drew his sword and crept

into thechamber. He knelt down and called his wolf to the forefront of his mind. Instantly, , the rocky chamber became bathed in

yellow and blue light. Against one wall were three skeletons slumped against it as if they had died sitting in a couch that had long

sice rotted away.. Hasir gasped, as dominating the rea wall was a shrine of Molag Bal standing on the backs of lowly mortals. The

Argonian blinked; forcing shadow to overtake the chamber once more and walked onward, blindly feeling his way around.

Red light flooded the chamber as it shot from the lord of domination's stone mace into the three skeletons. Light burst into the

empty sconces around the room Hasir griined as his grip on his weapon tightened.

"This is more like it. Come on you bastards. Do Your worst." He said, eyes narrowing. The skeletons shambled towards him, their

empty sockets filled with rage. Hasir inhaled deeply.

"Yor Toor Shul."

The entire chamber lit up as the shout ripped through the air. Hasir smirked as the skeleton caught fire as if their bones were dipped

in oil. The skeletons crumbled to the stoney floor and Hasir saw, among the boney debris, four gems, blue as the sky of

Coldharbour. He picked these stones up, put them in his bag and went to check on Nanaki

When he arrived, he saw two skeletons, like the ones he'd encountered, strewn about the khajiit's feet. Hasir gestured to them with

a clawed finger.

"Nanaki, the skeletons..."

The crismon khajiit held up a hand and offered his two septims; whether his intuition was corrcet or not remained to be seen.

"...are alive? No, reanimated by magic more like. The question is what was this place? A tomb?" He looked at Hasir who was just a

dumbfounded as he was. "We have to explore this place more and find clues that can tell us more."

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Hasir reached into his bag and extract one of the gems he found earlier. Nanaki gaped at this discovery.

"A Welkynd stone, here?" Nanaki asked of the Argonian found more. Hasir nodded and extracted three other stones. "Well, that's one

thing crossed of our list but we still need to find dwemer schematics and the key."

Hasir and Nanaki combed every inch of the chamber. Hasir's patience was wearing thin as a bit of thread. He groaned and concluded

that the chamber yeilded no more secrets. Nanaki, on the other hand, was more fruitful in his search. He called the Argonian over.

"I found a lose stone in the wall near the statue. The space lit up as Nanaki cast some spell on it. "By the divines...there's a room

beyondthe stone wall." He said, eyes wide with excitement.

After many minutes of both the khajiit and Argonian shifting rocks, the passageway opened on a bronze door set deep within the

rock.Hasir pushed it open and saw walls and floor made of a bronze metal like the door he'd just opened. Hasir and Nanaki passed

through it and found themselves in a rather peculiar ruin.

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Inigo cupped his hands over his mouth and called out for any sign of life.Hasir smacked the khajiit. Inigo hissed and lloked, rather

oblivious, at the Argonian.

"My friend, what was that for?" He asked. Hasir pointed to the dark ruin saying that he did not know who could be in there waiting to

end their lives. Inigo ignored Hasir's message and advanced further into the ruin.

Xelzaz summonned a ball of light that hovered above his hand like a tiny firefly bathing the ruin in warm yellow light. Hasir's mouth

dropped as he saw a bronze grilled floor the stretched as far as the eye could see along with stone walls that stood like resolute

warriors of a bygone age. Xelzaz held the light aloft as they advanced further into the ruin. They followed the twisting interior of the

ruin until they came to another door. Xelzaz opened it and walked through with the companions.

Ingo gave a shriek of fright as the door slammed shut, enveloping the room in darkness. Inigo and Hasir had an advantage that the

telvanni Argonian didn't. For them, the ruin looked bright as day.

"Inigo, do you see anything?" Hasir asked, uncertainly

The khajiit looked at him with a suspicious glance.

"Use your eyes. Better yet, use your wolf." He said, outraged

Hasir grabbed Inigo and was about to throttle him when he heard a terrifying howl. Hasir followed the sound further into the ruin

bathed in the yellowish-blue hue of his nightvision. The argonian's face went white as a sheet when a yellow dog-like beast ran

towards him, smelling fresh meat.

Xelzaz cast his light spell that had long since flickered and died. His face went as white as Hasir's. All of them stood still as statues,

not daring to move; their eyes fixed on the black khajiit who strode up to the Argonian.

"I see you found my master's old lair." He said, sneering.

Hasir snarled as he looked into the khajiit's uncaring eyes - eyes that resembled the unmerciful sky of Coldharbor.

"What the f*ck were those skeletons, were they people that your master tossed aside like they were yesterday's fish stew?"

The Doomstrider laughed which rang about the ruin as if there were more than one black khajiit.

"Those poor fools tried my master's patience. Their death is the least of their worries... and yours." Hasir asked the Doomstrider

what he'd meant. The khajiit walked over and sat on a bronze chair near Hasir. "I'm sure you saw a red light cast by my master's

statue? That is only a sample, a taste test if you will, for what he has planned for all of Tamriel." Hasir looked nonplused at the

khajiit. "Argonians." The doomstrider said, shaking his head, "Nothing can penetrate that hardened dam you call a brain, pity. What I

speak of is that my master, Stone Fire, Molag Bal, whatever you call him plans to use that magic sampled in the statues here to suck

the souls out of every being in Tamriel and then reanimate them as his slaves." Hasir groaned, saying that this new path is vastly

different to the one he'd already been spoon-fed about the 'unholy union.'

The Doomstrider laughed and whistled to a creature that was unseen bythe companions. The doomstrider smirked and two

mechanical humanoids with recognizable mouthhorns clanked into view.The doomstrider opened their chestplates, tore the key in

half and placed each inside. Abluishlight erupted where their eyes would've been.Hasir gasped and snarled. How could Lahar and

Letestu have betrayed him? He trusted them.

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Hasir swore as the Doomstrider eyes glowed maliciously as he looked at Hasir with contempt.

"My master will have this land one way or another, you can count on it, lizard. Now, I leave you in the gilded undead's capable hands,

Farewll." With that, he vanished, leavingHasir, a white-faced Inigo, Nanaki and Xelzaz to face the traitorous dwemer automatons.

Lamashtu unsheathed her dwemer sword and ran at Hasir while Lahar headed for Xelzaz. Without warning, Inigo leapt in front of the

Argonian, wielding his ebony sword tightly, a look of determination on his face. Hasir glanced sideways at his furry friend.

"Inigo, get out of the way!" He snarled. "The gilded are here for me, not you. Move aside... Hssss!"

Inigo shook his head, making his golden earrings jingle.

"I'm sorry to rob you of this opportunity my friend, but I have to face my fears as well as my past. If I don't, it will continue to haunt

me."

Hasir sighed deeply and gestured for the khajiit to continue with his supposed redemption. Inigo leapt at Lamashtu and slashed

wildly at her metal breastplate. The dwemer auttomaton glared at the khajiit and swung upwards with her sword. Inigo attempted to

block this attack but was flung sideways hitting a rock wall; causing some boulders to rain down on him. He brushed the rubble off

and redoubled his efforts. The effect, though he did his best to change this, was the same.

Hasir screamed with rage and inhaled.

"Yol Toor Shul!"

The fire light up the ruin as if it was a gigantic torch. Hasir smirked as the fireball engulfed the female gilded but Hasir's expression

of joy turned to one of dismay in an instant as it walked on; unphazed by both the heat and the force of the shout. He groaned and

looked over at Xelzaz and Nanaki. He ducked as Lahar flew past him hitting the wall near the Argonian. He looked at the wall

expecting to find a crack or some other indicator of an ident but the wall remained unblemished.

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Bluish-black flames enveloped Lahar's body liike the dwemer metal acted like fuel for the flames Hasir stared, eyes wide as teeba-hatsei

balls, as the flames ate through the metal casing and blacken the bones as if they were charcoal in a fireplace. When the fire burned

out,the Argonian sifted through the ashes and retrieved the burnt half of the key.

Hasir ran at Nanaki, pinning him to the wall with his claws. The khajiit tried to grab his dagger to defend himself but the mad

Argonian'close proximity prevented him from doing so. The argonian snarled at him.

"Why the f*ck did you do that? You are aware that is the Doomstrider's signature move, right?" The argonian's claws dug further into

thestone. "Are you hiding something? Are you in league with him?"

The red khajiit's face leaked sweat like a defective faucet. He knew his options were running out so he ejacul*ted saliva onto Hasir's

face.The argonian exclaimed in shock. A fireball the size of a small sun erupted from the red khajiit's staff. Hasir dodged out of the way

as thefireball spell collided wall the stone wall that Lahar collided with moments before.

Hasir scrambled to his feet and lashed out with his flame whip whci catch Nanaki around the tai;, ripping it out from under him. The

khajiitshaman yelled out in pain He got up and summoned the bluish-black flame. It vomited Forth, forcing Hasir to roll to the side,

narrowlyavoid instant death. The argonian responded by summoning a spell of his own. Nanaki braced for the worst but Xelzaz flung

him inbetween them, lifted Hasir off the ground as if was a feather and flung him against the wall Opposite Nanaki.

Hasir got up and was about to retaliate when Xelzaz cast a negate magic spell snuffing Hasir's spell as if it were a candle in the wind.

"Hasir, aren't you forgetting we have much bigger fish to fry? Stop trying to go after minnows and focus."

Seeing 'her' chance, Lamashtu sneaked up behind Hasir and rased her dwarven sword fully intent on dealing the final blow. Sensing

this,Xelzaz yelled at Hasir to turn around. The argonian rolled to the side, plunge his claw into the metal casing and ripped out the

other half ofthe key.

The argonian looked hopelessly at the key salvaged from Bromjunaar Sanctuary and started to sob. He wondered if it could ever be

wholeagain. Inigo placed a clawed hand on the Argonian's shoulder as he too studied the tarnished key.

"My friend, is there anything we can do?" Hasir slowly shook his head

The smart blue cat gripped his shoulder, handing him three schematics.

"Turn that frown upsied down my friend. Our journey is almost done."

Hasir screwed his face up in bewilderment.

"What do you-?"

It was then that he saw the schematics Inigo had handed him. His mood change dramatically as he saw schematics for the

placement ofthe welkynd stones, the portal and what seemed like the diagram of a rather large dog guarding the portal. Hasir

looked from them to thekhajiit; eyes wide with astonshment.

"This is-where did you find these?" His eyes darkened again, "It doesn't matter anyway. The dwemer schematics will be useless if we

can'tfix the key. You might as well have just hand me three pieces of blank parchment for all the good these will do now."

Nanaki walked over and asked to see the broken pieces. Hasir handed them over muetterin something about them being 'too

damaged.' The khajiit blanked him and pressed the two pieces together as if they were a jigsaw puzzle. Hasir gaped as magic not

unlike the Argonian's own healing magic erupted beteewn his closed hands. Hasir heard the telltale signs of metal fusing together.

Nanaki grinned and handed the key back to the Astonished Argonian.

"What kind of magic was that? Never, in my travels, have I ever seen anything like it. You mended that which was thought to

unmendable."

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Nanaki said that they can talk about the magic later. Now, he said, that they had all the components neccesary for him to open a

portal to the other world. They walked out of the cave and found Xelzaz, Scruut and a ton of bodies heaped high like unwashed

laundry. The argonian looked from the telvanii Argonian to the apocryphal watchling,

"Alright, whose pright idea was this?" He groaned heavily, "I thought we agreed to wait until after I exited the cave." Xelzaz looked

confusedly at him and say they did not agree on such terms. "Oh," He said scratching his neck, "I thought we-er... nevermind.The

good news is we now have all the ingredients nessecary to open a portal." K'hairi and Xelzaz whooped with delight and asked if that

meanttheycould head to Krovaxis since they know the approximate location.

Hasir started to agree but Scruut reminded him of a crucial ingredient missing in his recipe for success.

"Aren't you forgetting something? How can you perform an excorcism without the proper tools?"

Hasir looked stupidly at her and shrugged; not understanding the analogy. Scruut sighed and told him she was taliking about the

Book of Fate. The argonian slapped his forehead.

"By the Hunting Grounds, your right! What a stupid hatchling I am, forgetting such a crucial piece to the puzzle? I should just dunk

my head in Hist sap."

Inigo chortled at this as he and the mismatched companions walked out to the cobblestone road and headed for the Whiterun

stables. Nanaki stopped the companions and said he had a better way than a carriage or horse. Hasir looked at him with

skepticism, thinking he must be insane.

"I can assure you, I am not insane. You did not see me at Vitharn, did you?" Hasir shook his head. "Well there you go, not insane.

Now I will needd you lot to stay perfectly still for this spell to work." Inigo asked if they could breath. The red khajiit nodded, "Yes

Inigo you can breath. This spell won't work on lifeless corpses." Inigo thanked the gods and breathed normally. Nanaki muttered

some words causing a cyan outline to begin shimmering around the companions as if they were part of the metaphysical world rather

than the physical one.

Hasir's eyes went wide as he tried to scream but soon found that action to be impossible as what seem like solid air was condensing

his chest. He thought he was going to die, be thrown out into the spiritual realm and be visiting Hircine a lot sooner than anticipated.

He looked to his left and right to see how his friends were faring. They were as frightened as he was as well as struggling to expand

their chests and lungs as if a giant fist held them very tightly. He also saw they were busy making peace with their gods, whomever

they were and, likewise, feared the worst when they slammed onto solid ground.

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Hasir could hear that his companions were as breathless as he was, all except for Nanaki who seemed to be uneffected by this

joureny, perhaps he'd done it before.

"So, Nanaki, what in Oblivion did you just do?" He asked. "I felt like I was a square peg being forced into a round hole."

Nanaki chuckled as if he found their bewildered faces amusing.

"I teleported you from Karthspire to Windhelm. Why are you guys acting so surprised.

Hasir got up and strode over to Nanaki.

"You... teleported us?" How?"

Nanaki told the Argonian that he studied magic at the College of Whispers in Valenwood and that, to his knowledge, was the only

place of magic in Tamriel that taught both nature magic, or shamanism, and corporeal munipulation. Hasir and the red khajiit looked

over to see the blue khajjit and the others getting to their feet, or tentacles as the case was with Scruut.

Hasir scoffed at this shocking exclusion of the spell he had used on Lahar.

"Don't forget the how freely you cast the black flame spell, not to mention... illegally." He said, smirking

Nanaki shrugged as if the question bore no wieght in the current circ*mstances.

"Yes and no." Hasir stared incredulously at the crismon khajiit. "Look, I know what you are going to say and, if used with extreme

care when the situation calls for it." The green Argonian gaped in disbelief. "Scoff if you must Hasir but necromancy is not as illegal

as one might think. It can be useluf when dealing with enemies." Hasir asked how that could be possible but Nanaki shook his head

and gestured to the main gate of Windhelm.

The companions crossed the stone bridge, opened the main gate and entered the city.

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When they stepped over the threshold, Iningo turned to Scruut and inquired about the direction they had to head in to find the

book.

"Based on what I had gathered from the book, we should head down that alleyway over there." She said, gesturing down a small

alleyway to their left. They alll nodded, sginaling that they understood and walked down the alley past some red wood paneled

housesuntil they came to a similarly fashioned house nestled close to a red brick building with a gatedentryway.

Hasir walked up to the door and knocked. A chinque of light could be seen as a yellow-skinned Altmer peered at them.

"Hello, What may I do for you?" He asked. Hasir said that they needed to find a certain book and if he had such a book in his house.

Nanaki and Xelzaz both shook their heads as they thought there was a much better way to convince him without whacking him on

thehead with a frying pan. To their surprise, however, the man nodded and bade them enter.

Inigo looked around the house; narrowing his eyes. The smart blue cat's tail twitching like a cow try to bat away a fly.

"Nice ...erm... house, if, in fact, it can be called that."

The Altmer chuckled and gestured around his 'house.' Inigo and the other khajiit and Argonians looked to their left and saw two

shelving units standing against the far wall.

"This is not merely a house. My friends, welcome to the museum of curiosities. I am Calixto. Over the eons, I and my deceased

brother obtained oddities from various places on Tamriel. Care to look around. But be warned, if you take anything from this

museum, I will bear done on your in a way that will make your ancestors hurt. Understood?"

Hasir strode over to the shelves and gaped at each of the items. Scruut came to the small rectangular display case showcasing the

book.

"Hasir..." She tried but he was not listening as he was busy perusing the various odd items. Scruut waves her largest tentacles above

her head to try to get his attention. She sighed as he continued gaping at the items, shoot her tentacle out and pricked one of his

scales, enough to draw blood. He whipped around and hissed angrily at her.

He prodded the wound with his finger and see fresh sanguine liquid flowing off his finger like a mini waterfall. His other hand glowed

like a light as the wound scabbed over and healed instantly. She continued calling his name, making him more and more flustered.

"What?" He snarled, causing the watchling to recoil a bit. His eyes lost that anger when he saw the book. "Oh-I... erm, sorry." He

said, turning beet red. He came over and attempted to unlock the display case.

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Calixto stormed over and forced Hasir away from the display case.

"Look. Don't touch." He muttered a curse under his breath as he walked back to his desk. Hasir thought this endeavor would be

easier if he somehow robbed the Altmer's gift of sight. Scruut knew where this was headed and attempted to urge him to see reason.

Hasir blanked her and spot a hollowed-out barrel in the corner of the room near some boxes. He brought the barrel over and jammed

it onto the Altmer's head. Hasir snigg*red to himself and he walked over to the display case.

Scruut narrowed her eyes at him.

"Hasir, why did you do that? You don't intend to steal the book?" The sly Argonian nodded. The watchling shook her head and said

why did she even bother.

Hasir crept to the display case, inserted his claw into the keyhole and worked it back and forth until he heard the familar 'click.' He

swung the case open and grabbed the book. With the book free of its cage, the Argonian opened it.

Xelzaz, Inigo and Nanaki tried to maneuver the barrel in a way tio free the Altmer for his wooden cage. After several failed attempts,

they finally freed him. Vision mometarily blurred, Calixto felt his way over to his desk he were a blind man develeoping a new sight

to replace one that was lost.

Calixto loomed over the Argonian, greedily treasuring the book like it was a link to his homeland or a key to unanswered questions,

like a hawk closing in on a cornered rodent.

"What part of 'look and don't touch' don't you understand?" He asked fuming. "Did you pull the wool over my eyes so you could steal

the book for your selfish gain?"

Hasir looked amusedly at the Altmer.

"Technically, i was a barrel" The altmer held up a hand and said he was beyond dissapointed by Hasir's flagrant disregard of rules,

torethe book from the shocked Argonians hands and stared him down as if he wounded him pysically as well as emotionally.

Theargonian snarled and lashed out with his flame whip. He was so blindsided by anger that, instead of pulling the book towards

him, hemurdered the shop owner.

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Xelzaz came up behind him and looked from the ash pile to the fiery Argonian.

"Hasir, how could you do such an awful thing? You could have just used telekinesis on the bookk and left him alive," He gestured to

theashpile, "by the gods... the guards will be on you like feshflies on a bogblight. Return it to its rightful place before we all pay the

price"

Hasir shook his head and turned away from the telvanni Argonian.

"No way! I found this book fare and square. Besides... it was Scruut's idea to come here, not you. If anything, it's up to her to dicide,

so butt out, mouth kisser... Hsss!"

Xelzaz scoffed at this apparent dig at his psyche by his waves were too strong for Hasir's boat of pain to cut through them so easily.

He wanted to retalaite but by the time he opened his mouth the scaly thief was out in the icy air of the city. Xelzaz groaned and

followed him.

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Upon feeling the cold air on his scales, Xelzaz chuckled to himself as he saw eight guards rush toward Hasir with sword drawn. Inigo,

K'hairi and Scruut had a similar reaction. To the telvanni Argonian's dismay, Hasir chose the worst time to begin to transform into his

wolf form. Xelzaz knew this was because he felt he'd no other option, but, all the same, thought Hasir had a better head on his

shoulders.

The wolf snarled as the guards closed in; sword pointed at its chest. Inigo saw this and positioned himself between the raging

werewolf and the equally angry city guard. He wanted to diffuse the situation so that it would'nt need to com to bloodshed but his

friend was too far gone to change and the blue khajiit knew that.

Twilight drew a breath and howling out shrilly to the night and began his attack. He swatting Inigo to the side like some big, furry fly

and ran at the guards who responded in kind. The guards swords flashed in the moonlight as they attempted to puncture the

werewolf's thick fur but Twilight saw this and quickly dodged out of the way. He swiped at the guards with one massive paw; ripping

one of the guards wide open and lobbing the head off another. Twilight's eyes narrowed as one of the guards managed to break free

of the bloody carnage.

He headed for the gate where he knew safety waited. He got to the gates and tried prying them open when he let out a cry of pain

as Twilight sank his dagger-like claws into the guard's leg. The guard lay there utterly helpless as the ravenous wolf pulled him ever

closer to an early grave.

The guard, a breton with a youthful face tonsure in the middle of his brown-haired head, unsheathed a steel shortsword and waved

it, frantically, like a stick in front of the wolf in hopes that it might feed on the sword rather than on him. Twilight ignored this and

went on munching the Breton's leg instead.

Twilight's eyes glowed with malicious intent as he relished in the fresh sanguine liquid pouring from the man's leg like tiny tributaries

from a stream. The breton's painful yells continued as the wolf bore all his weight on his leg, snapping it like a chicken bone between

aman's teeth. The man pleaded ceaselessly with the hungry werewolf as he smelled the stink of saliva dripping from its gaping

maw.

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Inigo looked from the mound of dead bodies to the wolf munching on the cornered Breton. Xelzaz saw this to, and together, they ran

to help extract the terrified Breton from Twilight's hungry maw. Inigo grabbed the man's arm while the Telvanni argonian grabbed

Twilight's hind paws and pulled. The black and white wolf clung onto his meal even tighter. The blue khajiit furrowed his brow in

frustration.

"Xelzaz, that's enough. Do you really want to rip him in two?" He asked. Xelzaz stopped pulling and instead further assessed the

situation. The argonian told the blue khajiit that they had to find a way to extract the wolf's fangs without causing further damage to

the shredded meat of the man's leg.

Inigo kicked Twilight hard in his haunches. The wolf yelped and rounded on Inigo; snarling at him. Xelzaz tended to the breton who

had to fight to stay conscious. He rummaged in his bag and extracted a bundle of wisp wrappings, leather straps and leather. He

asked Nanaki and K'hairi to go outside and fetch some water for sterilizing the wound.

They both nodded and left with a bucket they found lying near the main gate. They walked across the bridge that covered the

expanse between the city and the snowy landscape. Once near the stream that flowed under the bridge like some forgotten worries,

K'hairi set the bucket aside, dipped her cupped hands into the cool water and begin to fill the bucket. Nanaki saw this and shook his

head; sighing to himsel.

"Why must you make things harder for yourself? One khajiit can fell a sabrecat faster than a bunch of unorganized idiots." K'hairi

ceasedgathering water and stared at him, asking him to elaborate. Nanaki chuckled to himself, "I'm just saying you could let the

bucket doall the work instead of fill it little by little with your hands."

K'hairi took the bucket and submerged it Beneath the crystal clear water like a fish attempting to cool off after a paticularly hot day.

Whenshe felt the bottom of the wooden container getting significantly heavier, she pulled the 'fish' out of the stream and set it on

the grassybank. The red khajiit walked over and peered into the buckey with a look of disssatisfaction.

"er, you do know this is water and not fish, right?"

K'hairi pushed him in the chest, not knowing how close they were to the water's edge. She giggled to herself as the khajiit went head

overtail into the stream.

"Oops, sorry, I guess I don't know my own strength." She lent down and pulled the wet khajiit out of the stream.

Nanaki shook himself off like a fish that hated the feeling of water on its scales and stripped out of his wet clothes; setting the aside

to dryproperly. K'hairi averted her eyes as he was standing there in his loincloth glaring at her.

"What's your problem? Have you ever seen a naked khajiit before? Besides, you could have warned me before pushing me into the

water.Khajiit like water as much as a nord likes living in Blackmarsh." K'hairi apologized as Nanaki gathered up his folded clothes

and followedK'hairi back to the main gate, pushed it open and walked to where the Argonian was stemming the steady flow of

sanguine liqud with his hand.

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He thanked the gods as he saw the red khajiit and female Argonian. He called to them to bring over the bucket.

"K'hairi, Nanaki, over here. Pour the water onto his wound." He looked away and swallowed the vomit that threatened to overwhelm

him. "Quickly now, before he wound heals unevenly."

The red khajiit ripped the bucket from the Argonian's fumbling claws.

"He said 'quickly', why on Tamriel are you taking so long? Give me that!" The breton saw the khajiit and argonian go at it like two

children fighting over a treasured gem or something of equal value. The breton yelled at them to cease their childish tug of war but

sent the bucket soaring through the air and got a face full of the aquatic liquid.

He took out a cloth from his bag and wiped his drenched face; he soaked as much of the water into the cloth as he could before

transitioning the liquid to theguard's mangled leg. The guard writhed like a wolf caught in a hunter's trap be calmed down after

feeling the cool water begin to permeat his wound; strelizing it from within. Hasir howled out and transformed, feeling deep remorse

for what he'd done. He approached the man but he looked at the argonian as he was going to cut him up and serve him on a plate.

Inigo went over, pulled Xelzaz aside and spoke in hushed tones to him. Hasir scratched his head in confusion as Xelzaz went down a

small alleyway past the small red wood house known by some as the Arentino residence and turned down a small side street. Hasir,

curious, followed him until they came to a shop with a sign affixed to it that read 'The White Phial.' Xelzaz took no notice of the sign

as he headed inisde, followed by the black-haired Argonian.

Hasir saw the telvanni Argonian approach a desk that spanned the entire wall at the back of the shop near some stairs. He hid

between the bookcase and the enchanting table in the corner of the small shop. Both he and Xelzaz saw an elderly man agruing with

a much younger Nord - maybe his son - about a journey of some kind...also the elderly man's health came into question.

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A crash sounded behind the telvanni Argonian. Xelzaz whipped around to see a piece of paper fall to the ground. His eyes narrowed

as he saw a tail whip back into the shadows. Xelzaz groped into the darkness and siezed the Argonian's tail as if it was a giant

snake. He dragged the fighting Argonian away from his safe space.

"Hasir, what are you doing here?" He asked. "You do know that it is your fault that man out there," He gestured toward the gate of

Windhelm. "is hanging by a thread thanks to your, or should I say Twilight's, tactless behavior."

The argonian thrashed around and yelled at Xelzaz to let him alone. The telvanni Argonian obliged and helped the Argonian to his

feet. Xelzaz told him of a conversation he heard including the bits about a mysterious container with a snake-like crack running along

its base.

Hasir scoffed at this and told him that he was just snatching straws at random. He blanked Xelzaz as he strode up to the counter and

asked the young Nord if what the crazy Argonian said was true. He nodded.

"It is. My son here says I have to go on some journey to some medical hut in Whiterun to help cure the... well, whatever it is he

seems adamant that I am suffering from. I don't need any fancy gadgets to tell me what I know I don't have. I have all I need

upstairs. I would get it, but sadly I am in no condition to do so.." He gestured from Hasir to the upstairs bed chamber. "You there,

scaly fellow, can you do me a favor and retrieve the phial for me?"

Hasir nodded and went upstairs. He did not see anything even remotely resembling a phial. He only saw a bed in the middle of the

chamber and a small table hugging the bed as if protecting it from invading daedra. He scanned the area agina and still didn't see a

phial the color of snow. He riffled through the drawers; throwing papers and food items on the bed, feeling the cold wooden bottom

of the drawer but felt nothing of interest. He felt under the extra large wolf fur that cover the bed; nothing. He searched under the

pillows and finally felt a phial. Clenching it tightly in his claws, he went downstairs.

Hasir tapped the man on the shoulder. A rather unorthodox thought entered the Argonian mind. He debated whether or not he

wanted to share it, thinking it would come across as something a young Saxhleel would say much less a grown one.

"You'll be pleased to know I found the container. The only question is, er, do I piss inside of it? Is there a magical swirling aura that

turns my piss into a useful potion?"

Xelzaz groaned and snatched the phial from Hasir's hands; eyes narrowing with disgust. He muttered something about the Argonian

egg spending too much time in the shade and handed it to the elderly Nord. The Nord held up the white phial and asked what liquid

they'd wish to put inside of it. Hasir scrutinized the phial and asked what their choices were.

Xelzaz chimed in unceremoniously and said that one can put a number of useful liquids into it and it will magically refill every day or

so. He went over the liquids to be put in the phial if one so wishes. Hasir thought on this; an image of red liquid healing the man's

hunk of meat, and decided upon a healing draught. The Nords smiling and went to work filling the phial with a crimson liquid and

said the liquid is much more potent than another standard healing potion.

Hasir's eyes narrowed as they handed him the phial. He snarled menacingly at them when they denied his unsual request.

"You neglected to do what I asked...Hsss!" He swiped at the Nords with his empty claw. Xelzaz forced it by his side and saidthat

putting piss in the bodtle nor having two dead Nords will help the man, thanked the shopkeeper and went outside.

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Hasir and the companions walked back to the spot where K'hair was helping Nanaki wrap the bretons leg and applying the hardened

leather cast. He beamed at them and said he had great news. His eggsister and the crimson khajiit glared at him and told him to be

quick as they were in the process of securing the leather.

"What if I told you that you didn't have to do all that?" Hasir said, tail moving slowly behind him. His eggsister told him to spit it out.

Hasir hissed at her and said he wanted to be up some tension first. "I have, in my possession, a potion that will cure the citizens Nirn

of all the ailments they may suffer with. This magical potion can be yours for a mere two hundred fifty septims." He smiled and

gestured to K'hairi, "Argonian, would you do me a favor and take off the leatherthat binds that man's flesh together and unravel the

wisp wrappings?"

K'hairi did as her eggbrother asked and started to unravel the wisp wrappiing. Hasir doubled over and roared with laughter; he never

once took K'hairi for a sap who would do anything for money. K'hairi shot him a warning glance and told him had they been in the

marshes, she would have beaten him within an inch of his life. Hearing this, the falsely proud Argonian gulped and ceased his

snigg*ring.

He went over to the man and poured the entire bottle down his throat. K'hairi's jaw dropped as she watched the potion work its

magic. She turned to Hasir and asked what was inside. Hasir grinned.

"Just a healing potion the likes of which Tamriel has never seen before. Don't worry though." He said as he saw K'hairi's worried

expression, "it will refill with the exact same potion in twenty four hours."

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K'hairi and Nanaki sighed in relief more for the breton male getting to his feet, with Inigo's help, than Hasir's statement about the

White Phial. Disheartened that no one knew or cared about how powerful the phial was, he stowed it in his bag; he knew it would

come in handy someday.

Hasir stopped feeling sorry for himself when he heard Inigo and Nanaki and the man, sitting on rocks by the main gate, talking in

hush tones in hopes to not unleash the black and white wolf in a certain scaly resident of Black Marsh. Hasir crept to the western wall

of Candehearth Hall; claws digging into the stone facade, so he could eavesdrop without being spoted.

"So... What made you come to such a cold and inhospitable city?" Nanaki asked, concerned. The man said he arrived on a ship that

left HighRock and was bound for Skyrim because he wanted a better life than what he'd faced where he'd come from.

Inigo openedhis mouth to share his two septims but Nanaki groaned.

"Inigo, you do not interrupt someone when he is telling hislife's journey." Inigo glared at him, turned away, tail coiled about himself

and muttered something about him 'shaving a khajiit with arusty knife.' The breton raised an eyebrow. The red khajiit apologized

and gestured for the man to continue.

The breton smiled and thanked Nanaki. The red khajiit returned the kind gesture.

"Thank you. As I was saying, I arrived here on a ship in search of a better life." The breton stop and seemed lost in thought. "Before

I go further, though, I feel I need to introduce myself. My name is Terbon. I became part of the Windhelm guard after seeing them

jail the guy who caused so much pain back home." He glanced at his newly repaired leg. "Thanks so much for all you did keeping

that foul beast from flaying me like eat on a hot stone." He said, gesturing to Hasir with the fires of Oblivion in his eyes.

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Nanaki lowered the man's accusatory finger and sighed.

"Look, we can berate Hasir six ways for Sundas, but, now is not the time. Go back to your post. I assure you know more threats will

come your way." He said, shooting a warning glance at Hasir. "We can elimate those threats if they do arise, just... take care of

yourself." The breton guard grinned and resumed his gaurding of the main gate.

The argonian scrambled away from the wall when he saw Nanaki heading his way and sat on a step that led to the inn.

"Hey, er, so what did you guys talk about?" He asked, in a hopefully innocent tone of voice.

Nanaki sat down hard next to him; his black eyes boring into the Argonian's.

"Enough with the theatrics Hasir! Why did you spy on our conversation?"

Hasir tittered nervously and cast about for any means of escape.

"E-eavesdrop? Whatever do you mean?"

Nanaki sighed heavily and put his hand on Hasir's shoulder.

"I had a feeling you were listening in. You know, the whole town, not to mention the guards, are going to want the beast's head on a

spike for all to see, don't you?"

Hasir shrugged.

"Yeah, so?"

Nanaki sighed heavily again and grabbed Hasir by both shoulders and forced him against the wooden door.

"You idiot! You... you are the beast. They will want to kill you and stick your head on a pike. Do you honestly want that? To be denied

the thrill of hunting for eternity in the Hunting Grounds or feeling the warm embrace of the soil of a Hist tree to be ensured that you

get a new vessel upon rebirth?"

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Hasir shook his head, making the red khajiit grin and let him down.

"Good. Now if I ever see you attack someone unprovoked again, I will have your head." He said, dragging a claw across his throat.

Hasir gulped andshook like a leave on a tree. Nanaki laughed, saying he was kidding. "Relax, argonian, I'll never do such a gruesome

thing. Now... the book of fate. Did you... dive deep into its waters of knowledge or are you still standing dry on the shore waiting to

take the plunge?"

Again, Hasir shook his head, reached into his bag and pulled the book oout of his bag and opened it.

"Well? What does it say?" sSaid the red khajiit impatiently. Inigo and K'hairi had also come over to observe.

Hasir saw strange symbols on the pages, quite like the ones he saw in the book describing the Book of Fate's location. The symbols

rearranged themselves before his eyes, forming themselves into symbols and, the more Hasir concentrated, the more those abstract

symbols made sense; linking Hasir's mind and the book by an invisible chain of understanding. He cleared his throat and began to

read.

"It says I must acquire three items: an axe, a key, crystals that reflect moonlight and a map of the mechanics that came before. I

have all the items. It also says hhe the in order to truly defeat Molag Bal, I must acquire a fourth item. The item in question is a

sword that is guarded by living shadows. Once all items are acquired, I and my companions... thatss you lot, can enter Stone Fire's

realm in Tamriel long past and cut off the snake's head but only after I restore nature and destroy Bal's servants."

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Nanaki grimaced at this as if the book lashed out a him with an invisble fiery whip. He asked Hasir if he could see the book. The

argonian begrudgily handed the book over, only after telling the khajiit repeated that something bad might happen. The khajiit

shrugged off this seemingly bad omen and opened the book. Instantly, a blinding white light shot out of the book like a pillar from

Aetherius.

Nanaki tried to avert his gaze but soon found his claw inexplicably clamped to the bookjacet as if by some unknown force while the

light attempted to drain the poor khajiit's vision. Hasir conjured his flames whip and attempted to lash onto the book. The whip cut

through the air like a blade through darkness and hit a solid barrier of sorts. He guessed that once the book is opened by one who's

fate is already written, an impenetrable shield enveloped the book and unfortunate reader like Sheem-La when she read the black

book.

Hasir looked helplessly from Inigo to her eggsister to Xelzaz, curious if they had any suggestions. Everyone except Xelzaz merely

shrugged.

"I do have an idea. Mind you, it may not work." The argonian supplied. Hasir said that he didn't care what they did. A thought came

to him as he pondered on the best course of action. Maybe his mother lied about her lycanthropy taking her sight and, instead, was

robbed of her sight by the very book that is bleeding Nanaki dry. He would find out the truth from her at a later time, now they had

to find a way to save Nanaki from suffering the same fate as his mother might have. He woulld be a vocano waiting to erupt if he

found out the latter was true and the former was not.

Hasir looked at Xelzaz and poked him in the shoulder.

"So, er, this plan of yours... what iss it?"

Xelzaz eyes refocused as if he was staring of into the void between Tamriel and Oblivion

"Er, what? Right sorry, I... erm... was thinkiing about the perfect spell to, er, free him from the book's pages." He said dully as if part

of his mind was still riding the starry lakes of fire that was Aetherius and Oblivion. "This spell requires a lot of focus so I will require a

lot of space to bring it up."

Hasir did as Xelzaz asked and ushered everyone back so that he could concentrate without be overwhelmed. At that moment scruut

came over.

"Sorry, did I miss anything?" She asked in that all too familiar voice of eternal boredom. She looked at Xelzaz who was conjuring

what looked like an octupus tentacle from the earth and put a tentacle on his hands, making him lose focus on the spell. "What in

Apocrypha do you think you're doing? I have an idea but it will not be without risk. I have to trade myself with Nanaki." Hasir heard

this and protested. Scruut ignoored him. She focused on the book ensnaring the poor khajiit and her tentacles grabbed the book;

breaking its hold on the red-furred khajiit. "You want fate, do ya? Take mine! My master has boatloads of fate. Take it, take it all!"

There was a flash of green light and Scruut was enveloped by the tan pages. It only lasted a short while and the book fellto the

snowy ground below. Nanaki got up, thankful to have his vision restored, pick up the book of fate and silently thanked Scruutfor her

sacrifice.

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Hasir put a caring hand on the grieving khajiit's shoulder, gently reminding him she is not truly gone.

"Are you ok?" He asked, looking at him

The khajiit nodded and placed his face in his hands.

"Its all my fault...I shouldn't have read that foul book. If I hadn't she'll still be with us."

The argonian sighed and remebered something that was seemingly lost on the sea of time.

"Someone told me once that we shouldn't live in Shunatei, which is the fear of forgetting. We should always strive for Ku-vastei or

the needed change that we wish to see. Scruut is not dead, she just returned to the ink pools of Apocrypha. Daedra cannot die. The

can be discorporated - which is alot better than death in my opinion. If you think about it, it's like the way we Saxhleel return from

death. Our souls find new bodies - I am sure she will do the same - that is, if her soul is indeed ripped apart and not just floating

somewhere in Apocrypha. She could also be inextricably linked with the tides of fate, we don't know. Just... don't get too down on

yourself about it, ok?"

Nanaki nodded, got up and walked over to K'hairi who was leaning against the north wall of Candlehearth Hall. Inigo came over and

sat down on the step in front of the hall that the red khajiit vacated earlier.

"That was a nice speech my friend. Did the book of fate tell you anything? Get any glimpses of our, I'm sorry, your path forward?

Where do we go from here?" Hasir told him that there is a fourth object they must acqure before they can tackle Krovaxis.

Inigo's eyes went wide at this sudden change of pathing.

"A blade guarded by living shadows? I-i don't know what that means... perhaps it means we must retrieve something from a temple

far to the west of Skyrim. Now, mind you I was only a kitten when my father told me about this but one of the bedtime stories he

used to tucked me in with was a tale from his days as an Elsweyrian assassin. The story was he was sent to retrieve a sword that

glowed like the very light of aetherius itself and bring it back to the Esweyr sanctuary. Now, before you say anything, I know this

isn't standard dark brotherhood procedure but bear with me. My father said he found a beacon the color of snow outside our home.

Apparently someone dropped it or discarded it for some reason - I don't know - but what I do know is what he said next. He said

that a woman spoke to him to purge her temple of shades and retrieve the sword of purest light."

He looked at Hasir who becamelost in thought, tryingto figure out how this connected to the dark brotherhood.

"My friend, I know what you're think, you're thinking, thathe was enlisted instead by the silver hand or the Dawnguard, while the

Dawnguard bit isn't too far off the mark. He retrieved thesword and brought it to Dawnguard as he was tasked to give it to Iran, the

person in charge of the Dawnguard.He looked at Hasirand sighed, "He told me he was going to return to the sanctuary and obtain

his gold but he heard of Iran's death at the hands ofcreatures of the night so I, not yet old enough to carry a sword, felt it was my

duty to save my father. I gathered up any provisions I could carry and set out for Skyrim. My nose smelt death emanating from out

of the cave there, a place called Dayspring Canyon, I gathered my wits and went inside, not knowing what I'd find. Immediately I

was set upon by all manner of undead; vampires, draugr and the occassional deathhound. I blanked them, ran into the fort, retrived

the sword from Isran's broken body and cut through the undead like a Saxhleel through hordes of Wamasu. Unbeknowst to me, one

of the draugr survived, cracked my skull open with a rock and hauled me off to Dimhollow Crpyt where they stripped me down,

stealing my sword and locking me away in darkess."

Hasir giggled at this. The blue khajiit eyed him with contempt and told him it wasn't funny. The argonian wiped his eyes.

"I didn't meantt to laugh,, I'm sorry. It was a... nervous laugh." Inigo narrowed his eyes at him. "anywa," Hasir said, coming back to

himself. "is that the reason why you're blind in one eye? Why you're afraid of the undead? I would be too if they sealed me away in

some tomb, devoid of light, slowly sapping my sight."

Inigo nodded, saying the tale off him escaping the draugr he told him all those months ago in the cell in Riften was more of a

continuation of the tale he'd just told him and the tale his father'd told him in Elsewyr.

"Yes, my friend, that is why. now you know why this khajiit goes to pieces when facing draugr. The shades of which the book of fate

tells is, mind you I am going off of what my father told me, a corruption that dwells inside the temple of Meridia. The corruption is so

great that it took over the sword, dawnbreaker, snuffing out its eternal flame." Inigo got down on one knee and clasped his hands

together, "My friend, will you come with me to the temple so I can regain the sword that my father once held. In addition to that,

with the sword I can finally exact my revenge on the undead that sealed me away in that ungodsly tomb and maybe even help you in

your quest to destroy Molag Bal and save Nirn."

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Hasir smiled, thanked Inigo, turned and opened the gate. Inigo followed him out of the gate and was joined by the Telvanni argonian

and K'hairiHe hissed appreciatively as he felt the cool air on his scales. Nanaki emerged from the gate and gazed at Haisr as he was

aware something was bothering him.

"Argonian, can I have a word?" Hasir was unsure if he meant him, Xelzaz or K'hairi but all doubt was erased when a red khajiit curtly

nodded in his direction.

Hasir and Nanaki walked to one of the sheltered parts of the bridge that had a little window looking over the icy water below. The

khajiit whose fur was supposedly drenched by the blood of the mountain lion asked Hasir what he saw in the book of fate. The

argonian leaned against the stone wall, looking out across the sea of ice broken by the bows of large ships.

"I learned that I need a fourth item to complement those I already gathered." Nanaki glanced at him saying he was not told of this.

"Sorry, I thought you knew. Anyway, the book told me in addition to the schematic, the welkynd stones and the enchanted axe I now

need the blade, Dawnbreaker." He glanced at Nanaki and narrowed his eyes while his tail danced around nervously, "I'm only going

off of what Inigo told me, about his dream he had when he was young. In this dream, his father told him about a sacred blade and a

temple."

A shocked expression crossed the khajiit's face as he contemplated this new information.

"You said something of a dream Inigo had a while back? Hmm.... I wonder, is the temple mentioned in Inigo's dream on Mount

Kilkreath?" Hasir shrugged. The red khajiit leant against the wall closest to the Argonian. "If that is indeed the temple the blue

khajiit's father spoke of, it is the temple of Meridia, the Aedra opposed to the undead and darkness." The argonian scratched his neck

and asked how the red khajiit knew of this. Nanaki grinned mischievously and started filing his claws with his sword. "I have my

connections. My initiation to becoming a shaman was to pray at Meridia's shrine to ask for her favor."

Hasir followed Nanaki back to the center of the bridge and, when everyone was in position, he focused on an image of Mount

Kilkreath and cast his teleportation spell.

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