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Exploring the Pale ~ 8th of Heartfire Feb 18, 2013
Soon after he was up out of bed, Jorlen began the walk back to Dawnstar, since Nightcaller Temple had been abandoned for decades, and there was not a fresh piece of food left inside. The morning was bright and the air was crisp, but the Skull of Corruption and the thick tome with the recipe for Vaermina's Torpor were more extra weight than Jorlen wanted to carry; he decided he would sell them in town.
When he reached the Jarl's longhouse, he found the Jarl, Skald, on his throne, squabbling with his captain of the guard. "With all due respect, sir, I think our forces belong he-"
"Nonsense!" yelled the Jarl. "I'll hear no more of this talk! Now go do your job and guard my city."
As the captain walked away, Jorlen passed him and approached Skald.
"Sir," said Jorlen, "I have ended the nightmares which have plagued Dawnstar. This staff was being used as the conduit for Vaermina to feed on the town's memories."
"Hmm, yes," Skald murmured, as he looked over the staff. "And what of that priest, Erandur?"
"Dead, sir. He was killed by, er, cultists of Vaermina."
"A shame. Anyway, here's your reward, 600 Septims. Also, I'd like for you to give that staff to my court wizard over there," the Jarl said, pointing. "Wouldn't want the cause of Dawnstar's nightmares getting into the hands of some mage who could do something even worse, you see. Now normally, I'd make you thane or something, but you're still new here. I don't know anything about you! Also, I need someone who will be an asset to my hold, who can fight to protect it as thane. You look like a strong young man. But you have much to learn about battle. Make yourself known in my hold, and the title is yours." If only he knew that I could send him flying across this room with three words if I wanted to, thought Jorlen.
"Thank you, my Jarl," Jorlen said sarcastically as he walked over to the mage, who took the Skull from him and began examining it. "You know, I'd also like to buy that book from you, if you're selling," the woman said.
"It's yours. I don't want much for it."
She gave him a handful of coins and he was on his way.
A moment after Jorlen walked outside and began on his way toward the inn, a nervous-looking man ran up to him and thrusted an enchanted shield, telling him to hold on to it for him before running off. Not wanting to deal with the trouble this man must be in, Jorlen's hammer caught up with the fugitive's ribs, and the man collapsed, dead. A few minutes later, a farmer came asking about his shield and the thief who took it, and Jorlen returned both to the man.
With this taken care of, Jorlen went into the inn for a meal, and bought a loaf of bread, some cooked beef, carrots, and a cheese wedge, which filled him up nicely. When he was finished eating, he returned to the bar and purchased enough food for another meal later on. He had decided he would explore his temporary new home.
Jorlen set out west. He wanted to save some coin to help build a new life, so he figured he would do some hunting. He had no bow, but he was Dragonborn.
He trekked far enough out of town to where nobody would hear his shouts before he started. When he was sure he was alone, Jorlen spotted a deer running across a snowy hillside. It saw the Nord and picked up its pace, but Jorlen shouted ahead of where it was, and the force of his words hit the side of the animal like a boulder, sending it tumbling down the hill. While the deer struggled to stand up, Jorlen went running down the hill, his hammer over his head, until he came to his prey. He brought down the weapon on the deer's head and the animal was done for.
He skinned the prey and moved on. Jorlen noticed that he took a newfound enjoyment in loneliness, not to mention violence. Before, he had hunted for his wife; now, he hunted for sport.
As he continued westward, an arrow whizzed past Jorlen's face. He turned to see that the archer was an elf, clad in fur armor, perched on a big rock. Jorlen ran at him and let him feel his hammer's full force. The mer staggered, but surprisingly stayed on the rocky ledge where he stood. However, he had his limit, as Jorlen knew. Another man ran onto the rocks, and Jorlen shouted him up into the air, to see him hit the ground with a groan. When he descended the small hill he was on, Jorlen saw that as he had suspected, he had found a bandit camp.
The man stood himself up, unsteadily, and readied himself for the blow of Jorlen's hammer. Unfortunately for the man, he was in no way ready, and he was dead in one swipe. In the center of the camp was a final bandit, lightly armored. Jorlen killed him with a vicious headbutt to his unprotected cranium. With all the bandits dead, Jorlen scoured the place for valuables, finding some gold, a few lockpicks, and a potent speechcraft potion which he could sell for a pretty Septim.
In he distance, Jorlen spotted a wrecked ship, battered by waves and washed up with its outer deck facing inland on a steep angle. Jorlen walked towards it and drew the Blades' sword Delphine had given him in his right hand, Nettlebane in his left. Jorlen may have been a brute with his hammer, but he also liked sometimes to use these lighter bladed weapons. Deftly slashing a mudcrab out of the way, he hopped aboard the old ship.
There was a small captain's quarters on the deck; through another mudcrab and the room's door and Jorlen found a coin purse in a chest, which had evidently rolled onto and crushed whoever the bones left on the bed belonged to when the ship ran aground. He searched the rest of the room, then headed below deck.
Water filled the right-hand side of the ship inside, and Jorlen got a sense of eeriness from the still-lit lamps which swayed with the bellows of the old, creaking boards surrounding them. Yet another mudcrab greeted Jorlen, this one's fate the same as the other two. Down the hall from the door he came in, Jorlen spotted a door on his left and decided to try it. It was stuck. He threw his weight at it once, then twice, his shoulder succeeding to break the lock. A pile of baskets fell through the doorway and past Jorlen.
He stopped for a moment, to rummage through his pack; a moment later, his hand emerged with a torch. Holding it between his side and his right arm, he managed to create a spark to light it, using his meager knowledge of the school of Destruction. His mother had had a basic grasp of the craft, but would not teach Jorlen, saying his was to wield steel, not magic. Moving on through the hall, its floor littered with things fallen from shelves, books, angry mudcrabs, a coin purse and and illusion scroll, which Jorlen took, and even a Shrine of Kynareth, Jorlen reached a fork in his path. The hall went on, but to his right, Jorlen had a door going... Somewhere. Jorlen busted the door's lock and walked through.
The door took him to an area of the ship where the damage caused by the shoreline's rocks was evident, as a gaping hole in the floorboards made by a rock led to the water. Jorlen walked past this and the bones of a man who had camped in that spot years ago, up some stairs and back inside. Following the corridor slightly further led Jorlen back to where he had began. He was almost finished here, but he had not seen past the door which had taken him around the ship. So he walked the hall until he came to a dead end; there, he found a crate with a few potions, which he slid into his bag.
On his way back to the entrance, a gleam caught Jorlen's eye, from the corner of the room. He moved closer to inspect, and found that the gleam was a pile of ore, and an ingot or two. These would bring good money, Jorlen knew, but he was already straining just a little. He took a knee and slung his pack down in front of him, searching for a remedy to his problem. He found it in a potion of strength.
Jorlen bundled the ore and ingots together and hefted them onto his back, grunting from the strain. He lifted the potion to his lips and drank, and as soon as the liquid was down his throat, it was like the weight disappeared. Jorlen began jogging quickly, not stopping until he was face to face with a miner in Dawnstar, where it had begun to snow.
"Can I sell my ore here to whoever owns that mine?"
"Tomorra, if y'd like," said the miner, "closed up for the night already."
Jorlen pulled the bundle of metals onto his back once more, and walked through the cold wind to the inn, where he rented a room, ate his dinner, and went to sleep.Rextoret likes this.
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