In Which Ysani Acquires Mehrunes’ Razor
Very eventful session that saw the conclusion of the Pieces of the Past quest–and the unfortunate end of Silus Vesuius, as Mehrunes Dagon orders Ysani to kill him to claim the Razor! See below for how I confirmed the bug that let me play this out without getting an option to spare Silus!
- Bought a bunch of building materials from Warmaiden’s in Whiterun
- Boinged to Windstad to do a bunch of building; got Iona to replenish the log supply; built a bunch of the armory
- Boinged to Solitude to sell a bunch of stuff—and also to rob Evette San’s household; sorry Evette, here have 3,000 septims
- Boinged back to Riften to collect Vex’s payment for that; got new job to do in Markarth, to stack on top of Delvin’s job
- Also got Delvin’s directive to report to Erikur in Solitude!
- Boinged off to Morthal to get the pommel of the dagger
- But first had to kill a dragon, right in front of Jorgen’s place as it happened, but thankfully it didn’t eat him; this gave me dragon bits to take back to Windstad to stockpile
- Boinged to Halldir’s Cairn to make my way to Cracked Tusk Keep (Fort de Casscorne)
- LOL, an elk spawned on an upper level of the keep, how’d it get up there? One of the orcs shot it
- Mostly sneaked through it, but got spotted by a couple of the orcs once i made it in; had to call the dremora on them; sorry orcs, I tried not to kill you
- Weirdest bug I’ve found in a while: found a basket with a rotating potato in it? OH SHIT HAUNTED POTATO
- Used Telekinesis to get the blade fragments without triggering the last couple of traps
- Got out through a locked door, then boinged over to Reachwind Eyrie to get in range of Hag Rock Redoubt
- Fought en route: one single cave bear, then a pair of them, taken out with assistance from Réjean and André
- Made it to Hag Rock Redoubt; snuck into Dead Crone Rock the easy way as Merawen had done
- Once inside the tower, had to sic the dremora on a couple of Forsworn and the hagraven; otherwise made it through and got the last bit of the Razor
- Boinged back to Dawnstar to check in with Silus; took a room at the inn, then went to talk to him; told him putting the blade back together seemed like a really bad idea, and Silus scampered off to the shrine anyway
- Boinged to Stonehills near the shrine to find a way up
- Dragon vs. Giant; the giant won, but I nabbed the dragon soul and loot
- Mined two corundum veins
- Took shortcut through Labyrinthian after derping around looking for the stairs to the shrine; killed two frost trolls
- Re-cleared Skyborn Altar since the dragon there respawned, and I had to go through there to get to the shrine; however, killed by frost troll at the foot of the steps to the shrine, boooooo; thrown all the way back to killing the first of the frost trolls in Labyrinthian
- Re-killed the frost-trolls, hit the second one with Unrelenting Force
- Spotted a distant hunter and dog off to my left did not disturb them
- Found an altar to Mara I’d never seen before just south of Dagon’s shrine
- Made it past the troll at the steps a second time through, but couldn’t trigger the bug where Silus doesn’t try to talk you out of killing him; rolled back to just before shrine of Mara
- This time I killed two snowy sabre cats by way of dremora boys
- Finally confirmed that if you’re not standing in the right place by the altar, Silus will totally never ask you to spare him and just outright attack you
- But I couldn’t just let the dremora boys kill him, I had to deliver the killing blow
- Dagon repaired the dagger, but I put his dremora up against my dremora, and that didn’t work out well for him, so bite me, Dagon
- Got the dagger, anyway; bye Silus, sorry I brought about your death
- Boinged to Windstad with assorted shrine loot to use for building and such
- Improved the dagger, also one of the weapons I yoinked off the dremora
- Leveled up to 53; took glass smithing perk
- Stepped into house and combined my materials stashes in the armory
- Improved Chillrend again now that I have glass smithing
- Saved for the night
It took a little doing, but yeah, I was able to confirm that you can trigger a situation at the finale of Pieces of the Past in which you are never given the opportunity to spare Silus. What I had to do to trigger this bug was to stand at one of the corners on the opposite side of the altar from where Silus had stood—specifically, the corner on what would have been Silus’ left in that position,
Which makes me feel a little better about this quest. I don’t like the Daedric quests that have the Daedra basically going “kill this person you just helped in order to get the fancy artifact”. Which is why I won’t kill Erandur to satisfy Vaermina, and I won’t do Molag Bal’s, Boethiah’s, or Mephala’s quests at all.
This one is right on the border though between “I actually want this artifact” and “but I’m not comfortable with what my character has to do to get it”.
So knowing that there’s a bug you can trigger here to avoid getting the option to spare Silus at all lets me at least handwave the narrative a bit. Because if Silus just outright flips out and attacks you as soon as Dagon orders you to kill him, then it becomes a matter of clear self-defense.
Note also that Silus will also flip out if you take too long to answer Dagon’s demand—but I don’t like that option as much, narrative-wise. Because it means your character is actually legitimately torn about whether or not to obey Dagon’s command. And I feel like as a player, there are no circumstances under which I’d be comfortable actually obeying Dagon on purpose. Since he is, after all, one of the more malevolent Daedra.
That does still leave open the question of why you therefore take the dagger if you’re not willing to obey Dagon’s command. For Ysani, I can see her thinking she really regrets acquiring the damn pieces to begin with—and that if she’s taken them from the people who were safeguarding them, this means she’s just volunteered herself for further safeguarding of them.
Except that Dagon forces her hand and repairs the dagger as soon as she touches the altar. Which means she has to put up a show of defiance, which of course he doesn’t buy. But what also makes this interesting is that Dagon throws two dremora at you as a final test.
And Ysani is capable of summoning her own dremora. So arguably there’s a measure here of “seriously, Daedric Prince of Destruction? That’s all you’ve got?” At which point Ysani kind of feels justified in deciding she’ll use this dagger however she damn well pleases, and if she wants to use it for nothing more than a really fancy letter opener, that’s exactly what she’ll do.
So overall, I feel like the in-character narrative went like this:
- Wait, you said you want the pieces, you didn’t say a damn thing about actually asking Dagon to put it back together, THIS SEEMS ILL-ADVISED
- Fuck, you’re going to do it anyway, aren’t you? I’m going to have to follow you to smack some sense into you
- Goddammit Silus don’t make me kill you
- Well, shit, you made me kill you
- Guess I’m going to have to protect these pieces myself
- Oh wait you’re not going to give me that option are you, dammit Dagon, I didn’t kill him for you
- Dremora? Seriously? That’s all you’ve got? Here, your dremora can say hi to my dremora, and then we’ll go kill the other two in your shrine and loot the place for good measure, you don’t need all those gold ingots do you?
- Okay fine I’ll protect the repaired blade myself, just to keep it out of my destructive hands than mine, and I reserve the right to kill Thalmor with it
- And no, I’m not your fucking champion, Nocturnal has prior claim on me, so fuck off
And, lol, I’m aware that this is me taking advantage of a known bug to actually get the shiny powerful dagger even if I take issue with the normal game flow required to get it.
This bug, however, strikes me as one I’m willing to take advantage of. Unlike some bugs which actively break gameplay, or which let you take advantage of glitches to earn something, this one is just a way to let me tweak the narrative a little in my favor.
Let it also be noted for the record that I specifically did not loot Silus’ clothes off his body. Because this is definitely one of those scenarios where Ysani will want to at least allow somebody she’s killed a little bit of dignity in death. And also, definitely not wanting Mythic Dawn garb herself. That shit was dyed with dye made out of blood, yo! Creepy much?
Interesting terms observed:
- Fort de Casscorne: Cracked Tusk Keep
- Redoute de Sorceroc: Hag Rock Redoubt
- Roche de la mégère: Dead Crone Rock
- Rasoir de Mehrunès: Mehrunes’ Razor
Casscorne is a pretty straightforward translation, I think. Casser as a verb means to break, and corne can be either horn or tusk.
Sorceroc strikes me as another likely portmanteau of sorcière + roc. In other words, Witch Rock.
Roche is another word for rock in French; when to use roche vs. when to use roc is not clear to me? But roche is in use for Dead Crone Rock, here. And mégère is apparently a word for shrew/virago/termagant, so that’s appropriate for the crone part of the name.
The name of Mehrunes’ Razor gets pretty much translated over directly. I did however notice that once it was in my inventory, it was actually called Dague de Mehrunès. So there’s a little bit of inconsistency in how the name of the weapon is translated.
Speaking of Mehrunes Dagon, utterly unsurprisingly, he addressed me with the informal you.
Guess it’s time for me to go talk to Erikur and deal with his little frame job as a palate cleanser! Which should get me another Stone of Barenziah while I’m at it.
And after that? Yeaaaaah I think it’s time to go fuck up some Thalmor.
Also, to immortalize that moment in Cracked Tusk Keep where I found a very problematic food item, I give you HAUNTED POTATO: