I’m posting this on Sunday, but this is actually for the play session I did on Friday night. I didn’t play last night, because I was trying to charge through fixing all of my screenshot galleries so I could resume adding galleries to new posts.
And this one is another step forward in the Imperial side of the civil war plotline, wherein I help the Empire regain the Rift.
- Play date: 11/26/2021
- Session number in this run: 28
- Decided to hoof it from Whiterun to Riften, since I was out of charged soul gems and hoped I could hunt some on the way
- Passed a hunter and dog near Riverwood
- Made it past Helgen and the nearby Stormcloak camp without incident
- Passed hunter on horse near Haemar’s Shame
- Crashed for the night at the Alchemist’s Shack (which had respawned, so I looted all the ingredients again)
- Killed assorted bears and wolves and a sabre cat
- Headed first to Autumnwatch Tower so I could take out the dragon there
- Saw a different dragon once I spotted the Imperial camp but that one didn’t land; looked like a Frost Dragon?
- Dragon at the tower was a Blood Dragon, Lyds and I took that one out
- Then I reported to the camp and Legate Rikke
- Got orders to get incriminating evidence about Anuriel being involved with the Thieves Guild; I am shocked, SHOCKED I SAY, that the steward in Riften is corrupt
- (Puts a different spin on some of the conversations I’ve heard her having with Laila Law-Giver!)
- Mined corundum vein near the Imperial camp
- A few more bears and wolves and frostbite spiders en route to Riften
- Got Heartwood Mill on the map as I was avoiding Largashbur
- Made it to Riften without incident
- Sold a couple of items to Balimund
- Crashed for the night at Honeyside
- Tried to sneak into Anuriel’s chamber the back way through the barracks, but was not actually sneaking so got warned off by the guard patrolling the corridor
- Take two: told Lydia to stay in Honeyside while I tried this again, and applied the wisdom learned from Merawen’s playthrough!
- Enchanted me a ring of Sneak on the Honeyside enchanter table
- Then went back to the barracks and came back in the back way, then dropped into Sneak and quaffed some potions of invisibility to get past the patrolling guard
- That let me make it into Anuriel’s room to get the letter, and duck out again and get into the throne room unchallenged
- Showed letter to Anuriel, who discreetly hastened me back to her room
- “You’re an Imperial spy, interesting.”
- She paid me off and gave me the info about a wagon laden with valuables
- Headed back to Honeyside to get Lydia
- Went out the back way through Honeyside so as to not be seen going back through Riften again
- Found Merryfair Farm
- And a courier found me with a Letter of Inheritance; oh goddammit, Lob is dead, so much for the plan to get him to be steward for a different property! Sorry Lob
- Booooo killed by bandits at Faldar’s Tooth
- Thrown back to coming out of Honeyside
- Second time, took out both pit wolves and all five bandits safely; did not bother to engage the rest of Faldar’s Tooth, kinda on a mission here
- Narrowly avoided passing Stormcloaks having the ‘why’d you join the stormcloaks?’ conversation; I feel like that encounter might not have gone well!
- Did not avoid the two Necromancer Adepts who wanted vengeance for killing Malyn Varen; geez, how many disciples did that guy have, anyway?
- Onward to Imperial camp; sold bandit loot to the quartermaster
- Crashed for the night in one of the unowned bedrolls and reported to Rikke in the morning
- She ordered me to go meet her scouts just north of Shor’s Stone and see if we could ambush the caravan
- Killed yet another Dark Brotherhood assassin, geez these guys
- Made it to the scouts and oh hey hi Hadvar, congrats on your promotion, I sure will help you take over this caravan!
- We took the caravan! Hadvar sent me back to report to Rikke, who paid me for the work
- She ordered me to rendezvous with the force assembling to attack Fort Greenwall; CAN DO
- Boinged to Redwater Den for fast travel purposes
- Took Fort Greenwall!
- Got some Light Armor action, but started running out of healing potions so swapped off to ebony
- Lydia came close to biting it a couple of times
- Boinged to Solitude to report in to Tullius, who ordered me to report to the hidden Imperial camp in Winterhold
- But first, stop in Whiterun to regroup, and by regroup I mean kill Delga’s first Elder Dragon at the Watchtower! Fuck yeah!
- Did some smithing at Warmaiden’s
- Popped into Jorrvaskr
- Got a round of Two-Handed training off Vilkas and four rounds of Block training off Njada
Most of this session was all about advancing the Imperial charge through Skyrim, and in this particular case, helping them retake the Rift.
It occurred to me that I’d seen the Imperial camp in the Rift before, and that it was conveniently located near Autumnwatch Tower. And the dragon lair and Word Wall there. So I decided to pop there first before reporting to the camp!
(Still reproducing that problem where if you get subsequent words of Marked for Death, it starts triggering the fake Drain Vitality Shouts showing up in your Shouts list. Once I finally have a build of Skyrim available that I can run mods on, the Unofficial Dawnguard patch will hopefully help me take care of this!)
As a player, I quite enjoyed the challenge of getting into Anuriel’s room and swiping the incriminating letter there. I don’t think Delga enjoyed it at all, though! Because it involved more sneaking, not to mention theft and blackmail.
I’m pretty sure she may have just enough danger sense to have a yellow alert fire off in the back of her brain at Anuriel’s line “You’re an Imperial spy. Interesting.” Merawen would absolutely have taken that as a red alert, and considered the distinct possibility of having to threaten this woman to make sure she doesn’t actually blab to anybody about her being a spy.
Delga, not so much. I’m not even sure Delga would have thought to threaten her to keep her mouth shut. Or if she did think of it, she may have decided that the threat of the Empire revealing her connection to the Thieves Guild was enough to insure Anuriel’s silence?
At any rate, it was useful to be reminded that even if I’m playing a character who’s disinclined to sneak, this doesn’t let me off the hook for having those skills available.
Meanwhile, I was sad to get informed that Lob had died. DAMMIT. I was trying not to go near enough to Largashbur to trigger any other attacks there! So now once I get Heljarchen and Windstad, I’ll have to find other candidates to be stewards of those houses.
I think Delga did take more satisfaction out of helping Hadvar’s little squad take the caraven, though! It pleases me as a player that this plotline is letting me see more of Hadvar, just because it provides some extra narrative cohesion through the game overall to have the guy that helped me get out of Helgen be part of the overall war plot.
I’m given to understand that once I’m done with the war plot, I won’t be able to interact with Hadvar any further. Which is a bit of a shame. But for narrative purposes it’s nice to have at least a couple of characters shaping up to be Delga’s wartime compatriots.
Not only Hadvar, but Lydia as well! I was really pleased to see Lydia dive into the fighting at Fort Greenwall, as I captured in the screenshots for this session. I do feel like the game is depriving her of further character development in how it doesn’t let her join the Legion with me. Because yeah, at this point, I feel like she would. Not only to continue to defend her thane, but also to get back at the rebels who invaded her city!
Last but not least, I made a point of stopping at Jorrvaskr at the end of this session, just to check in with the Companions. And get some training from them! Because I haven’t been as assiduous as I should in getting Delga’s skills trained up in this run so far. Part of that has just been because I haven’t had the gold for it!
But this time I did, so I got a round of Two-Handed training off of Vilkas, and four rounds of Block off of Njada.
It’ll be time to head off to Winterhold and take back that place for the Empire! And by extension, punt Korir off out of being Jarl.
Just looked up who replaces Korir if the Empire gets Winterhold, and oh good, yes, the new Jarl will be friendly to the mage college! Good to know, said the future Arch-Mage. 😀
It’s nice to be able to share screenshot galleries again on posts when they go up, finally!
Editing to add
- 11/18/2023: Restored missing gallery, and added play date and session number markers.