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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Henry v. Keiper

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Hello to all those in the AAR world.

It’s been a while since I tried to write an AAR (and most failed, generally for a CTD bug, the files being lost in a computer crash, etc.), but I decided to try to write another one (and finish it, hopefully). I decided to base this one on the Elder Kings mod for CK2, which can be found over at their sub-forum.

This will be heavily character based, attempting to capture the feel of the Elder Scrolls world during this time period (450, Second Era)...so if you’re looking for an AAR where someone takes a small county and takes over the entire world in ten posts, this probably won’t be for your liking (although there's nothing wrong with those kinds of AARs). I decided to play a Dunmer (or dark elf) noble and play around with the Nerevarine prophecy that is featured heavily in ES3: Morrowind (although I will not be attempting to just make a CK2 version of Morrowind's main quest). For those unfamiliar with the quest of Morrowind, or not familiar with ES lore in general, you can find out about the Nerevarine prophecy here.

The mod will be played as is, although there will be one or two changes (ie., cheats) planned. However, when they are done, the readers will be notified. Also, they won’t be anything that will give me an unfair advantage against the AI (eg., giving myself 10,000 gold), but will help get the story going.

I will try to update at least once a week, to pace myself and likewise not burn myself out. This will be the first time I'm writing in a straight "story" narrative, but I only hope that, in the end, people will enjoy reading it.

I think it would also only be fair if I mentioned the inspirations behind this: For Skyrim!, by KaiserWilhelmI (also an EK AAR); and The Little Cub, by Aidun.

***

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Prologue

BOOK I: REGENERATION (450, 2E - 474, 2E)

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15

BOOK II: SANCTIFICATION (474, 2E - )

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
 
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Henry v. Keiper

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Prologue

“May the eyes of the Changed Ones be turned as red as this volcanic ash, and may their skin be as blackened as their hearts. The accursed drawn, blood from the master spilled, and a curse shown in the race of these folk, forever-more.”
- Azura’s curse upon the Chimer

At long last, the ashstorm had settled, and visibility went beyond a mere few feet, even in the light of day. The dark clouds still loomed overhead, and the ground was still as drab a gray as the scattered cylindrical rocks that rose up from the dirt and smoothed out at their top. The scattered trees rising among the rocks were but a shadow of their former glory, nature having been worn down by nature. The Tribunal Temple’s official was simply happy that the ashstorm was over, so that he could finally make the trip towards the Ashlander tribe that was currently under watch by a large team of Ordinators. Most of the Ashlanders were cooperating - if with great grumbling - but due to their intense hostility against the Temple and her forces, no chance was being taken.

The official, a Dunmer of average height with elaborate robes on his body and pursed lips on his face, stepped out of the hut he had confiscated from one Ashlander family, brushing some ash that had tumbled down onto it from the flap above him. Escorted by two Ordinators, he made his way across the landscape, to a larger number of huts in an open clearing. There were several Ordinators - easily recognizable by their ordinate, golden armor - scattered around the perimeter of the village, with several more among the huts themselves. They nodded and saluted towards the official, who paid them absolutely no mind nor bothered to acknowledge their show of respect. Rather, his red eyes seemed locked upon a single hut, at the far end of the nomad village, resting with its door facing directly at him. It was as if providence itself had made everything perfectly convenient.

An Ordinator opened up the flap, and the officer stepped in. Immediately he saw an Ashlander, stripped of his outer garments, hanging by rope tied to the poles of the hut. A Temple mage stood nearby, palm open and a small ball of fire burning softly a few inches from his hand, with soft flames spiraling about his arm and wrist but not seeming to burn his flesh. It wasn’t hard to figure out what the mage was there for: several dark red marks could be seen along the Ashlander’s torso, with patches of skin shriveling and darkening further, as if rotting. The Ashlander was heaving and gasping, sweat going down his dark body with his red eyes rolled into the back of his head.

The Temple official grinned, saying in a low voice, “Has the heretic recanted?”

The mage nodded, grinning back, “The heretic has recanted.”

The Temple official sniffed once, as if in derision, as he approached the dangling Ashlander. With his hands behind his back and a blank expression on his face, the official pursed his lips a bit more, tilting his head as if to examine the Ashlander like a scientific specimen. The Ashlander adjusted his red eyes, staring at the Temple official head on, though still breathing heavily.

“I assumed you weren’t the Nerevarine,” the official said matter-of-factly, grinning even more broadly than he had before, “just like all of those who came before you. All you were was a blasphemous fraud.”

The Ashlander laughed a bit, coughing afterward and wincing as he felt the pain from his abdomen, blood starting to pour through the wounds that the mage’s fire had created. He said in a scratching, low voice:

“I am not...but the Nerevarine will come...and when he does, he shall speak the Law for Veloth’s people, he shall speak for their land, and he shall name them great.”

The official replied, “Our people are already great, thanks to the power and guidance of the ALMSIVI,” at this, he raised his hands and looked up to the sky, and as if on cue the Ordinators and mage joined him with, “blessed be their names.”

The Ashlander only laughed again, “No...the Nerevarine shall free us from the cursed false gods. He shall bind the broken and redeem the mad...You worship a mock Tribunal - a perishable mockery of that which cannot be destroyed. But some day, because you worship that which is mortal, the judgment of Azura shall come upon you, and your so-called gods shall all be obliterated…”

As the Ashlander was speaking, the official was listening quietly. When the tortured man had finished, the official raised his hand and said, “I see...well, since you see fit to challenge our gods, let us show you that the Temple truly has power over life and death.”

He dropped his hand and turned, and, as if on cue, the mage flicked both his hands. In an instance, flame shot from the mage’s palms, and engulfed the Ashlander in a hot blaze. With screams and cries of great agony filling the tent, the hanging, writhing body twisted this way and that, flames rising up along the ropes, blackening his body more and more inside the fire. The Ashlander was trying desperately to get away from the hot flames consuming his body, eating through the flesh, and eating away into the bone, but there was no escape.

The official had by now stepped out of the tent. Some of the screams could still be heard but having quickly begun to die down into slow death gurgles, no doubt because the Ashlander’s heart had just ruptured. An Ordinator stepped forward and asked the Temple official:

“What shall we do with the camp, sir?”

“This is one of the lesser tribes, isn’t it?” the official asked. When the Ordinator nodded, the officer said, “Well then, send them to Oblivion. Let them rest with their precious Daedra.”

It was all over in a matter of minutes. The Ordinators, men well trained in the art of war, were more than a match for the unarmed men, women and children. Bodies were piled under the huts, with the Temple mage going through and setting fire to each structure. By nightfall, the smoke was still rising high, but the Ordinators had long gone, and there was gradually less and less of a trace of what had formerly been a small Ashlander tribe. Only a few nearby knew what had happened, but they knew that it was something not entirely unique to the island of Vvardenfell: another individual had appeared claiming to be the reincarnation of Azura’s champion, and, like all the others, he had been proven false by the forces of the Tribunal Temple, and all possibility of a Nerevarine threat promptly eliminated.
 
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Beladriel

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Quite interested in this. Will there be a real Nerevarine, or only his church ready to greet him when he comes (read:Morrowind)? I suppose you can't answer now, but I'll enjoy finding out. :p
 

soda7777777

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Subbed.
 

KaiserWilhelmI

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I am honored to have inspired someone to do something. :D
Needless to say that i will be following.
 
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Henry v. Keiper

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I am honored to have inspired someone to do something. :D
Needless to say that i will be following.
Thanks for following :) And glad you felt honored, ha ha. I'm surprised there aren't more EK AARs, honestly. Seems like there are more Game of Thrones fans than Elder Scrolls fans on the board (which isn't bad, mind you).

Quite interested in this. Will there be a real Nerevarine, or only his church ready to greet him when he comes (read:Morrowind)? I suppose you can't answer now, but I'll enjoy finding out. :p
Good question. I've written ahead a few chapters (to give myself room to pause and put effort into future updates), so I have a general idea of where I'm going. The ruler I'll be playing can't be the Nerevarine himself because he wouldn't fit the prophecies about it. As for the "church" being ready to greet him, that might be an interesting idea (sort of like a weird Elder Scrolls version of Luke 18:8).

Likewise.
I'm following.
Thank you all :) Glad people are already interested.

There will be an update posted tonight. I apologize for the delay in responding to people - I'm having a weird CAS error with the forum at home, which doesn't let me log in. As a result, I'm only able to post at my work computer. I'm rather thankful I chose to pace myself with updates, as it may end up being this way if I have to update at work. :eek:o
 

Henry v. Keiper

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BOOK I: REGENERATION

Chapter 1


“Were the Greater Beings the masters of the entire world, or did the humbler creatures have the strength to forge their own destinies?”
- From
Azura and the Box​

1 Morning Star, 450, 2E


Among the most notable aspects of Dunmeri politics is the place of the Great Houses. There are many houses, but only three Great Houses of note: Redoran, Telvanni, and Hlaalu. These houses are the remnants of the tribalism that had been a common feature of the Dunmer people before their prophet Veloth led them away from the Summerset Isles, far away from the Altmer and their opposition to the worship of the Daedra. These tribes took portions of the land for themselves, and over time, as the economy flourished and the Dunmer began to advance in culture and science, these tribes were transformed into family-run houses that had great influence in the affairs of state. The Redoran were known for their warriors, the Telvanni for their mages, and the Hlaalu for, among other things, their pragmatism.

The realm of the House Hlaalu rested on the western portion of Morrowind, flanked by House Redoran’s domain to the north, and the kingdom of the Nords to the northwest. In the darker days of the past, when the Dunmer had been fair skinned and known as Chimer (“the Changed Ones”), the Nords had used this land to push through and enslave the Mer who dwelled within the region. This included the mysterious Dwemer, those creatures of short stature who were known for their great mechanics and engineering, and whose mines and ruins still dot across Tamriel even up until this time. Together, the Dwemer and Chimer had pushed out the Nords, and peace, for a while, had settled in the land.

Eventually the Chimer would go to war with the Dwemer, and this would lead to many events: the disappearance of the Dwemer, the darkening of the Chimer into the Dunmer, and the rise of the Tribunal with their three “living gods.” For now, however, the Hlaalu were happy in their lands, resting on the borders of Morrowind, and living, for the most part, peacefully. Those events surrounding the war with the Dwemer were, for now, a distant memory, known only in the history books and those old enough to remember them.

On the very bottom of Hlaalu territory, in the province of Narsis, was the head of the household. This was Grandmaster Nethyn, of Hlaalu blood and a mere 70-years old (a youth in Dunmeri years, for Mer live much longer than Men). He was, by all accounts, an average ruler: he did not abuse his power nor use it against his peers, and yet he ruled as he saw fit, rather than according to any code of ethics or morality. He was fairly well known for his love of money, so much so that some courtiers privately joked that the scales in the House’s crest were representing how much gold Nethyn had in his coffers versus how much he secretly desired. In regards to religious affairs, he had actually received training as a priest of the order of the Tribunal Temple, and adhered to the faith of the “living gods” known collectively as ALMSEVI and individually as Almalexia, Sotha Sil, and Vivec. He was knowledgeable in the rituals of the Temple, and knew the lives of some Dunmeri saints, but he was far from a master theologian.


At this moment, within his main compound in Narsis, Nethyn sat in his grandmaster chair, his legs crossed with his head leaning casually against his fisted right hand. His red eyes looked nonchalantly across the long table, facing the various advisers of his personal council, who were busy chatting busily among themselves. Nethyn was quite comfortable in his chair, which many grandmasters of the Hlaalu house had sat on before. It was made of fine quality wood, and had plush cushions where one would sit down and where one would lay their back. Comfort of the chair, however, did not always ensure comfort for the situations involving the chair.

As might have been suggested by previous details, a meeting was being held - one of many during his rule - to discuss the affairs of the house. There was some concern about the next Grandmaster after Nethyn, as many of the nobles in the house were beginning to support Nethyn’s kinsman, Ethes of Padani. Ethes was of Nethyn’s blood through another line that had separated long ago, and was currently muthsera of the region for which he was known.

“There is little faith in your son, if you will forgive the bluntness, grandmaster,” said Vatollio, Nethyn’s chancellor, “Ethes is known as a mighty warrior, and capable in battle, while your son Evos is…well, mundane.”

Nethyn nodded, though he did not change his facial expression, nor did he shift his body. He did, however, calmly reply:

“Is there any immediate threat to our realm’s stability?”

“Well, no...I suppose not.”

Now, Nethyn sat up straight, placing both hands on his lap, “Then I shall not worry about it for now. Our house has dealt with worse matters before. What of the treasury?”

“A modest income,” said Eldrar, Nethyn’s steward and Muthsera of Thir, “not as much as the Dris, I am afraid.”

“That is only because the Dris are utilizing their neighbors,” Nethyn said with a hint of sarcasm. The House of Dris was well known for their corruption and willingness to make a few extra coins...even if it meant taking part in the slave trade. Khajit and Argonian innocents were their common targets, and with the Dris demesne resting on Argonian borders, there was an endless supply. For now, however, Nethyn did not want to bother with them - they were far away, on the eastern side of Morrowind, and they were of no concern to the grandmaster. Instead, he put his mind to other things:

“Has His Majesty replied to my letter?”

“Actually, yes,” Vatollio replied, taking from a stack of parchments one piece of paper that curled slightly at opposite ends, showing that it had formerly been rolled up, “and he has actually accepted.”

“Did he, now?” Nethyn said, his voice raising to show a slight hint of surprise. “I did not think he would accept.”

The conversation regarded High King Rythe, the ruler of Morrowind and all Dunmeri provinces (though the Temple no doubt would have contested that). He was well regarded by most of the nobility, as he came from the noble House of Indoral, and hence a descendent of the Chimer hero Indoril Nerevar, and had ruled fairly well for quite a while. He was, however, well known for preferring to remain behind his walls, in the comfort of his chambers, while his court and officers did most of the work that had to be done. Nethyn had offered Rythe to go with him to a pilgrimage to Vvardenfell, to perform the act required of most Dunmeri males during their lifetime. It would require visiting the city of Vivec, recounting the journey of the Tribunal before they ascended to godhood, and becoming connected with the history of the people.

And, surprisingly enough, Rythe had chosen to go along on this journey.


“Is everything prepared, then?” Nethyn continued.

“Yes,” Vatollio replied, “I have already told my men to prepare for their stay here. You can trust that I will run your household as well as you do.”

Nethyn was not quite sure what to make of that comment, as there seemed to be something darker under that surface, but he let it slide.

“Very well, then if there is nothing else, let this gathering be dismissed. The Blessed ALMSIVI guide you all.”

As most of the council members began to gather their items, Nethyn rose from the grandmaster’s chair and moved along the table towards one council member in particular. It was Athyn Merosid, the court priest. He wore the robes of the Temple, but otherwise did not stand out among his fellow courtiers, unlike so many priests. As Nethyn approached him, the grandmaster put his hands behind his back and asked:

“Athyn, you have been to Vvardenfell, have you not?”

The court priest nodded, “Yes, grandmaster. I studied at the city of Vivec itself.”

“Tell me of it - what is it truly like?”

Athyn pursed his lips, his red eyes darting about the floor as if he would find the right words among their feet. After a moment, he finally replied, “It is a conundrum of a place. On the one hand, it’s the most holy site in the world, with the Shrines of the Seven Graces scattered about. On the other hand, I have never encountered a bigger den of thievery, chaos, and death. The ashstorms are deadly, and if a hostile Ashlander does not kill you in the wild, then a bandit will.”

Nethyn nodded, listening quietly, asking after the court priest had finished, “And what of the Ashlanders?”

“Savage people, really,” Athyn said, his red eyes rolling a bit as if the memory of them filled him with all kinds of negative emotions, “the usual tripe of those who want to stay with the ‘old ways.’ On the surface, they look as you and I do, but on the inside, they are far from it. I would avoid them, if I were you. They are fairly friendly if you leave them alone, but they have a deep sense of honor, and they believe that we are followers of false gods.”

“I have vaguely heard of their beliefs,” Nethyn began, “something of a...Nerevarine?”

Athyn nodded, “Yes, the supposed reincarnation of Indoril Nerevar, whom the Ashlanders accuse the ALMSIVI - blessed be their names - of killing in order to obtain their immortality. In a way, I must admit I have pity for them, as they’re clearly under the sway of the Four Corners.” Athyn’s eyes suddenly lit up, as if he had remembered something, and he held up a hand to Nethyn and said, “I just remembered, I happen to have a spare copy of The Pilgrim’s Path in my personal library. I shall have my servants send it to you - I think it will be proper reading material for you on your journey. The Temple made it specifically for those going on pilgrimages.”

Nethyn smiled, “I would appreciate that. Thank you, Athyn. Take care of yourself.”

Athyn nodded and dismissed himself, folding his papers under his thick sleeve and departing out the door. The grandmaster continued to watch him leave until he had disappeared, and then turned to face the chair he had earlier sat in. He began to quietly think to himself, especially about all Athyn had told him. In truth, Nethyn was rather ignorant of the specific details of the Ashlander beliefs, although he knew that they accused the Tribunal of evil and still worshiped Daedra. How they could ever hold such beliefs was beyond Nethyn...but when he arrived at Vvardenfell, he could perhaps find out.
 
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Henry v. Keiper

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Interesting, I believe I can read out a feud between Ethes and Evos. I believe that you've managed to capture the feeling of ESC so far, mayhaps you can even do it better in the future! :)
Thanks. I had some elementary knowledge of Dunmeri culture before going in, but I did some more research (via the Wikia site) into it, as well as the history of Morrowind, before going in. My biggest fear was getting one small detail wrong, and having more die-hard fans jumping all over me for it :p
 

KaiserWilhelmI

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My biggest fear was getting one small detail wrong, and having more die-hard fans jumping all over me for it
I've got my eye on your updates! :ninja:
 

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I always love playing as the Dunmer. Everything else in Tamriel is basically chaos and conquest but they always turned out to be more about preservation and intrigue in my play throughs. Usually played Redoran and at least conquered Solstheim though. Looking forward to where House Hlaalu goes, and what happens with the Nerevarine.
 

Henry v. Keiper

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I've got my eye on your updates! :ninja:
Good, good, I need someone to make sure I'm not canon raping anything.

And then Talos killed Azura, taking his rightful place as the Nerevarine before talking to Paarthenax...

I always love playing as the Dunmer. Everything else in Tamriel is basically chaos and conquest but they always turned out to be more about preservation and intrigue in my play throughs. Usually played Redoran and at least conquered Solstheim though. Looking forward to where House Hlaalu goes, and what happens with the Nerevarine.
That's how it is in the lore, really. When the Empire fell, the only places not affected too much were the Altmer and Dunmer regions, because they had, for the most part, remained semi-independent.

Before playing this game, I tried out the House of Dris to see how Morrowind was. Managed to conquer some Argonian lands, became marshal of the realm...yeah it was good fun :D
 

Henry v. Keiper

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Chapter 2

“Your age is past. We are the new gods, born of the flesh, and wise and caring of the needs of our people.”

-- Sotha Sil, from
The Battle of Red Mountain​

30 Morning Star, 450, 2E

The captain was barking orders, and the inferior officers were his echo as the ship’s crew went darting to and fro, fulfilling their various duties. That could only mean one thing, and sure enough, when Nethyn looked up over the top of The Pilgrim’s Path, he could see the approaching land slowly appearing through the clearing mist. Most of all, the tall structures of the city of Vivec were starting to appear. Mighty blocks, slanting inwards until they reached a flat top, rose up in sections, with bridges and walkways connecting the units. Nethyn had seen artwork of the great city, but never before had he seen it in person.

“What does that book tell you, Nethyn?”

The Hlaalu grandmaster glanced over towards the source of the question. Not too far from him, leaning against the railing of the ship, was High King Rythe himself. He was older than Rythe by about thirty years (which was a small age difference for Dunmer), and carried more handsome features that had him the respect of the ladies in the court. He was wearing his royal armor, which was bright gold and, even in the mist, shone wonderfully. Surrounding him was a small band of guards, all of them from his personal retinue, and likewise wearing golden armor.


“It tells me of the shrines,” Nethyn replied, smiling a little, “where they are located, what to do there, at times what not to do there, that sort of thing.”

“I do not suppose they tell of the quickest ways and briefest shortcuts?” asked the high king, laughing to himself.

Nethyn shrugged, “At times. Mostly, it warns against more dangerous routes.”

“Vitally important as well, I suppose,” Rhythe remarked. He turned to look off the edge of the ship, his eyes raising up into the sky and gazing into the clouds a moment before asking, “Is that the Ministry of Truth?”

Nethyn’s red eyes lifted up - sure enough, out of the clouds, drifting above the city, was a huge boulder, nearly as big as the city itself. There appeared to be nothing natural holding it up, and it rested there like the moons did around Nirn.

“I believe so,” Nethyn replied, “this book speaks about it.” Then he proceeded to read:

When Sheogorath rebelled against the Tribunal, he tricked the moon Baar Dau into forsaking its appointed path through Oblivion. The Mad Star inspired the moon to hurl itself upon Vivec's new city, which Sheogorath claimed was built in mockery of the heavens. When Vivec learned of Sheogorath's scheme, he froze the rogue moon in the sky with a single gesture and the grace of his countenance. Overwhelmed by the courage and daring of Vivec, the moon Baar Dau swore itself to eternal service of the Tribunal and all its works. Thus the moon now stands guard over the palace, and serves as a citadel for the Temple's Ordinators.


“The god Vivec can get rocks to obey him,” Rythe said, “and sometimes I can barely get any mer to obey me.”

Nethyn shared a soft laughter with the king, closing the book and stepping up to the railing of the ship as it drew near the docks of Vivec. As soon as it stopped and had been tied to the platform, the ramp was let down and the passengers began to disembark. Nethyn and Rythe stepped down, followed by their retainers who carried weapons for defense and spare provisions. At the end of the ramp, they were greeted by a man wearing elaborate Temple garments. Nethyn had seen him on the docks, but had not thought much of him, figuring him to be someone who occasionally greeted the pilgrims and gave them directions or blessings. Instead, this priest ignored all the other pilgrims, and went directly to Nethyn and Rythe:

“Your majesty, and your excellency! Archcanon Farwil sends you his blessings, and invites you to his quarters for rest and recreation!”

The grandmaster turned to the king, who had a brow raised in utter surprise. It was well known by most among the nobility of Morrowind that the king and the archcanon had a mutual distrust for one another, partially because of the archcanon’s worry regarding Rythe and his tendency to rule as he saw fit, isolated from the influence of the Temple. There had been, in the last few centuries, a growing tension between the religious rule of the Temple and the secular rule of Morrowind. The gods of the ALMSIVI would often remain a neutral party, as the conflict came from archcanon and kingly ambitions, though the Tribune would at times mediate conflict.

The awkward silence that settled on the scene was not lost on the priest, who began to fidget a bit uncomfortably, and developed a look that quietly told, Spare me, I’m just the messenger. Finally he added:

“Only at your leisure, of course, your majesty…”

“Always happy to know the archcanon thinks of my well being,” the king said. The sarcasm in his voice was so obvious that some in his entourage could not help but chuckle.

In either case, the offer was accepted. The royal troupe was brought into the city, placed in royal quarters and invited to a feast with the Archcanon Farwil himself. Nethyn had to privately admit to himself that the wealth and power shown by the Temple in this feast would be shocking to those back in Narsis. While Nethyn and his court rarely went to bed hungry, their feasts were still meager, and only a little more than what the Dunmer in the fields would have been served. Temple servants brought large beasts that had been cooked and prepared with great skill, and jugs of water and wine were brought in to be served in exquisite goblets. Along the walls and walking down the halls were the Temple ordinators, wearing their bright golden armor that covered them from head to toe and made them a formidable sight.

“These ordinators look like they could take on the Tribunal single-handedly,” Rythe whispered to Nethyn as the two men were shown to their seats.

The grandmaster nodded, whispering back, “I think I shall have to consult my marshal on the need for higher training.”

The king nodded back, “As will I...I have a feeling the other nobles will agree quite quickly to that.”

The two Morrowind nobles were seated on either side of Farwil himself, with Rythe on his right hand and Nethyn on his left - the intended symbolism was not lost on either man. Farwil, a tall, thin man wearing the usual robes of a Temple official, had his palms held out, smiling towards Rythe and Nethyn individually before addressing the rest of those at the table, which consisted of the nobles’ highest accompanying officers and several Temple officials. When all had been seated, Farwil lifted up his hands and said in a loud voice:

“Oh ALMSIVI - blessed be your names - bless this food, and bless our thoughts and minds, and may they bear fruit of edifying conversation as we partake of this, the glory of your fields. Amen!”


Most at the table bowed their heads and said, “Amen,” then began to eat the food. Farwil sat himself down, turning to Rythe and saying:

“I had everything prepared as soon as I heard you were to enter Vvardenfell through our humble city, your majesty.”

Rythe nodded, shifting his eyes across the table, “And prepare you did.”

Farwil continued, “I can entrust you a battalion of Buoyant Armigers to defend you. They answer to Lord Vivec and are entrusted to guard pilgrims at shrines and along the paths.”

“That is quite alright,” Rythe replied, smiling broadly as he motioned to some of his officers, “but I trust my own men to make certain I can get from here and there in one piece.”

Nethyn could only imagine that the king had turned down the archcanon’s offer as a way to further affirm his independence from the Temple’s influence. Hoping to quickly stop any possible argument or either party saying a word they would later regret, the grandmaster cut in with:

“Your eminence, is it true that the Ashlanders hold to something called a Nerevarine prophecy?”

At those words, some of the Temple officials at the table dropped their utensils and turned, staring at Nethyn with a shocked expression. Rythe’s officers noted this, and sat up straight as if to prepare for an attack. Farwil noticed the sudden change in the dinner’s mood and waved his hands toward his peers, which seemed to calm them down at once. Turning to Nethyn, he commented:

“You will have to forgive my priests...Lord Vivec has forbidden the open conversation of forbidden topics, and the Nerevarine prophecy is one of them. All the same, I do not think he will forbid mere education on the subject, and why it is forbidden. Yes, the savages of the Ashlands, as well a handful of disgruntled priests, have a supposed prophecy of a reincarnation of Indoril Nerevar who will overthrow the ALMSIVI - blessed be their names. They believe the ALMSIVI - blessed be their names - killed Indoril, the Great Captain and Hero of the Dunmer, in order to obtain immortality. A most blasphemous suggestion!”

Some of the Temple priests banged their fists on the table in apparent agreement, which caused the officers to glare at this disturbance in their eating.

“Where do they get such a suggestion?” Nethyn asked.

“Their figments and imaginations,” Farwil answered tersely, “now, I think it best that we honor the requests of the ALMSIVI - blessed be their names - by no longer speaking on the subject.”

So it was that the topic came to an end, and there was no other theological topic discussed that night. At some point, after he had eaten much of his food, Nethyn begged that he take his leave, and began to take a walk along the walkways of the city. By now, night had fallen, and the stars and moons were out in the sky. As Nethyn made his way towards the Palace of Vivec itself, and looked out across the landscape about the city, he began to think quietly to himself on all he had heard about the topic. He still desired to learn more about these Ashlanders and their customs, and their strange beliefs that the Temple seemed so hostile about. It was, perhaps, a morbid curiosity into the unknown - a desire to see just what it was that filled some men with such revulsion.


As he neared the far end of the city, Nethyn glanced up, and saw the floating rock that was the Ministry of Truth. He continued to gaze at it for a long while, pondering to himself what such a crag could be used for. There were platforms along its sides, and a doorway leading in...just what could the Temple be using it for?

So many of my children are there…

Nethyn blinked, glancing about. He had heard a strange voice, as clear as a whisper but as audible as a thought. No one, however, was there. He even took a few steps around the two corners of the building, to see if perhaps one of his retainers were playing a strange form of prank on him. However, no one was there. After much deliberating, Nethyn decided that he was simply too exhausted from the day’s travels, and went to retire for the night.
 

Elm0__

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Awesome AAR, keep it going :) Are High King and and archcanon relatives? Both come from house Indoril.
 

Henry v. Keiper

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Awesome AAR, keep it going :) Are High King and and archcanon relatives? Both come from house Indoril.
Distant relatives, I'm sure (similar to Nethyn and some of his other relatives within the Hlaalu house). At the moment, Morrowind and the Tribunal are allied. However, I've RP'd tension to keep it in line with how the Dunmeri monarchy and the Dunmeri religious body saw one another in the lore (as well as to coincide with how the AI had the two bodies interacting in game).

Hail Nerevar! Praise His wroth and virtue!

Edit: Reviewed his traits, hope he gets a martial boost as the Nerevarine
Nethyn himself can't be the Nerevarine, as he doesn't fit some of the prophecy, like the fact that the Nerevarine must come from "uncertain parents" (by contrast, we know who Nethyn's parents are). However, he will be a pivotal part in the Nerevarine's rise and Azura's plans for the Dunmeri people.

Ooooh, interesting. I like the setting in Morrowind, opression is always a great plot proponent! Keep it up! :)
It definitely sets up for an interesting scenario...which will be relevant for the rest of the story :p

***

EDIT: Probably gonna update on Monday. I'd update over the weekend, except for this weird CAS error I'm still getting when I try to log into the forum at home (it works at work).