Dawnguard,  Faanshi Playthrough

In Which Faanshi Finds the Location of Auriel’s Bow and a Lot of Schematics

I had thought I was going to proceed onward to Forgotten Vale in this session, once I got the location of Auriel’s Bow in Ancestor Glade. I was mistaken! Instead, I ran the rest of Sorine’s “find me a schematic” quests.


  • Play date: 8/2/2022
  • Session number in this run: 47
  • Picked up at Lakeview
  • Headed out from there to Ancestor Glade
  • Killed en route: bandits by the river (and of course Serana raised one)
  • Ran Ancestor Glade as per previous playthroughs
  • Returned to Lakeview and picked up a bunch of things, and did a bit of crafting to move the level pointer along
  • Boinged from there to Honningbrew to sell stuff
  • Rode over to Whiterun and was pleased to find the Khajiit on site; sold a bunch of stuff to Atahbah once I realized she was a fence
  • Took a chance and went into Whiterun to also sell stuff–and no Traveller! \0/
  • Sold stuff to Adrianne and Ulfberth and Elrindir, but decided not to push my luck and left it at that
  • Boinged to Heljarchen; Khajiit is pleased to see Jordis the Radiant Sword-Maiden! Please buy more furniture for Khajiit’s house
  • Onward! Got Weynon Stones onto the map, fought two ice wraiths there
  • Also fought frostbite spider en route to Fort Fellhammer
  • Threw dremora and Serana at the exterior bandits, also at the interior bandit chief; got the boss chest loot and the next schematic; did not bother to look in the Fellhammer mines
  • Boinged back to Fort Dawnguard; gave Sorine the schematic and got her quest for the next one, this time at Redoran’s Retreat
  • Also sold stuff to Gunnar, and just to switch it up this time, actually bought an armored frost troll from him and got it following me
  • Then headed out again to go to Redoran’s Retreat–and the troll didn’t survive the visit! Thanks to the bandit chief having a sword that dealt fire damage, oops, sorry Gunnar, this is what you get for selling me a flammable troll
  • Cleared the place, then boinged back to Fort Dawnguard and sold more stuff to Sorine, and queued up the next schematic
  • Round 5: Halted Stream!
  • Tried to call Durnehviir to wipe out the place, but turned out Volkihar vampires also spawned there, and one of them killed me
  • Take two: got vampires again, successfully summoned Durnehviir, and threw dremora and Serana at the vamps and bandits
  • Cleared the place easily enough but all the ore veins were broken, oops, perhaps because the sword from the first bandit I killed in the mine clipped into one of the veins?
  • Anyway, got all the bandit gear and the next schematic
  • Boinged back to Fort Dawnguard, sold more loot to Gunnar and Sorine; turned in plan number five and got pointed at the last one
  • Ooh cool back to Kagrenzel! Boinged to Shor’s Watchtower to get there
  • Went cross-country and passed what I think must have been the open camp in front of Cragslane Cavern; bandits had respawned but they didn’t actually find Serana or me as we passed, even though I heard them looking
  • Passed the Imperial camp but not close enough to mark it for the map
  • Cross-country’d finally onto the path to Kagrenzel and killed the three frost trolls on the path
  • Made it to Kagrenzel but took a few times to run it; killed twice by the lift because i whacked into the walls on the way down; third time through killed by the final trio of Falmer; then killed again by the lift
  • Finally fifth time through made it all the way through
  • Got the final Falmer blood sample to round out the samples to take back to Septimus
  • Threw the dremora ahead of me to take out the final Falmer this time 😛
  • Got the centurion dynamo core and the flawless diamond, as well as the loot out of the chest that had the schematic in it, then got out through the Stony Creek caves and threw dremora at all the bandits
  • Also triggered the “Return to Kjar” quest, again; Kjar has problems with rogue crew, clearly
  • Got out of Stony Creek and boinged back to Fort Dawnguard
  • Turned in the final schematic and got the fancy enhanced Dwarven crossbow
  • Did a little enchanting; dropped some armor, one-handed, and carry weight enchantments on the light Dawnguard armor
  • Saved for the night


I started this session expecting to run Ancestor Glade, and then proceed onward to Darkfall Cave and Forgotten Vale! But it didn’t work out that way. I did run Ancestor Glade–but instead wound up doing the rest of Sorine Jurard’s Ancient Technology quests. My reasoning here was, I wanted that shiny enhanced Dwarven crossbow! And the exploding crossbow bolts don’t suck, either.

Ancestor Glade is always lovely to visit, just for the tranquility of it. In this particular playthrough, though, I do have to observe that Serana’s line about “you went as white as the snow” is weird if you’re playing a Khajiit. My initial reaction to this was sure, I might still have the same physiological reaction of the blood draining from my cheeks, but how the hell is Serana going to see that if my face is covered in fur?

“Khajiit is very confused. Her fur is still brown and she is fairly sure it did not change color just now? She is, however, rather woozy.”

Thinking about it, though, and poking at this on the net a bit, I found pages that suggest that in real life cats, you can in fact see signs of their being pale around their noses or the insides of their mouths. So maybe the end of her nose and her lips went white?

Oddly enough I could actually see the line still making more biological sense with an Argonian. Maybe a mood/stress reaction thing? Chameleons in real life suggest that an Argonian’s scales might change color in moments of stress.

Either way, though, Faanshi was no more pleased than any of my previous Dragonborns to have had that lovely peaceful sojourn in the Glade interrupted by a Volkihar vampire squad.

Once I’d done some crafting back at Lakeview and selling of some stuff at Honningbrew, I decided to take a chance and risk visiting Whiterun. I still had loot I needed to lose. And I remembered that in previous games, I’d seen Whiterun’s townsfolk do a damn fine job taking out the Traveler all by themselves without my help.

Even before I entered Whiterun’s gates, though, I was pleased to find the Khajiit on site. Three of them, anyway. Ri’saad was not in sight for some reason? But I discovered at that point that I could actually conduct transactions with Atahbah, not a thing I’d known before, and she also functions as a fence. NICE.

(And just to confirm for the benefit of Future Me: okay good yes, all three Khajiit caravans have their own fences, Ma’jhad and Zaynabi being the other two!)

Next item of interest, once I started going through my flurry of getting the various remaining schematics, was that I finally tried buying an armored troll from Gunnar. Since I’m high level at this point, the troll in question was a frost troll.

And I was rather stunned to see that it did not last a single outing. We’re not even talking surviving the full session. We’re talking didn’t survive the first place I took it to. And okay fine, this is because the bandit chief at Redoran’s Retreat was wielding a sword that did fire damage, and trolls are vulnerable to fire! BUT STILL. I was expecting that creature to last a little longer than that!

I’m also slightly surprised to discover that the two Dawnguard huskies, Bran and Sceolang, are actually higher level (25) than an armored frost troll (22). This seems weird to me given that trolls are in fact larger!

I’m pondering if I want to try for one of the huskies. But I think I’ll hold that until Faanshi actually adopts some kids. I kind of want to just bring Bran home to let a kid adopt him. <3

At Halted Stream, I summoned Durnehviir for the first time this game. And also somehow managed to break all of the ore veins in the place, not entirely sure why? But according to the Mining page on the wiki, veins will sometimes not be mineable after they respawn. This hit me not only at Halted Stream, but later at Stony Creek as well.

To my pleasure, the last schematic was to be found at Kagrenzel–a place I hadn’t been back to since my original run with Alarrah. \0/

And as a result, I had forgotten the necessary trick of how to deal with that broken lift that can kill you when the floor drops out from under you, if you’re not careful. I had to look up on the wiki how to deal with that, and the answer is, make sure you’re standing in the exact center of the lift when you touch the orb. It is also helpful to clear the dead bandits and clutter off of the platform before you touch that orb, as well.

Wound up having to try five times to get through Kagrenzel, just because on the third time through I got killed by the Falmer. But once I finally made it through successfully, I got the final schematic as well as a flawless diamond and a dynamo core for my trouble.

And now I have the tasty crossbow and all of the exploding types of bolts!

Next time

Now I’m ready to go hit Forgotten Vale. 😀


Editing to add

  • 11/23/2023: Restored missing gallery.

As Angela Highland, Angela is the writer of the Rebels of Adalonia epic fantasy series with Carina Press. As Angela Korra'ti, she writes the Free Court of Seattle urban fantasy series. She's also an amateur musician and devoted fan of Newfoundland and Quebecois traditional music.