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Entry 70: Almost Buying the Farm


EnragedBard

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Hey, it's Destana again.  The last entry caught me up with Runa, Fenrir and Damien.  I did a lot of fighting and some sexual healing via the Sisterhood of Dibella.  Damien and I met up with Fenrir and Valiana in Bruma after they'd been waiting there for a few days (and they fought off the siege a little bit).  Point of order:  I understand what Runa raved about when she said the Jerall View Inn was so good.

 

Damien and I walked in on Fenrir preparing to soak.  Apparently Sofia was sleeping in the airship.

"So where's your friend?"

 

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Fenrir shook his head, "She said she'd be down in a few."

We sat in the bath and Valiana walked in a few minutes later.  She slid into the water... in her full armor.

 

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"Umm... hi.  Are you Valiana?" I asked.

"Yeah.  Who're you?" She asked.

"I'm Destana.  These two's mom.  Why don't you come sit down with us?  Get more comfortable..." I said.

"Nice to... meet you.  You don't think it's unusual at all you're naked in front of your sons?" Valiana asked.

"Not really.  Nothing to be ashamed about.  I breast fed them both until they were two," I said, "It's just a body, everybody's got one."

 

She pursed her lips, "Huh..."

Sensing she wasn't the type who liked to let her guard down, I left her alone as I went and sat with the boys.  A moment later a naked and slightly on-edge Valiana joined us.

 

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"Hey Val, nice of you to join us," Fenrir said.

"I know I saw you a couple days ago, but good to see you again," Damien said, "I do have something important to tell you, though."

"What's that?" Valiana spat.

"Well, I found your long lost daughter.  She's the woman Fenrir came here to help out," Damien replied.

"Who is it?  Is it that Countess or Princess or whatever I've been hearing so much about?  Rigmor?" Valiana asked.

"No.  Her name's Runa," Damien replied, "I have the records in my bag, back in the room."

"Hmm," she folded her arms, "Not sure what I should say about it."

"Eh, well, you didn't seem the sentimental type," Damien said, "Just thought I'd do something nice."

 

"Speaking of nice..." I eyed Valiana, "You're really beefy."

"Can't all be sticks," Val replied flatly.

I smirked at her, "Might want to loosen up.  No, I like beefy.  Got some meat on your bones."

 

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"You like your new crown, don't you mom?" Fenrir asked.

"Oh, yeah.  I forgot I had it on," I said, straightening it, "Anyway, I suppose we could just chill here until Runa gets back or there's another attempt at a siege.  Probably be another day or two.  For now, I think I'm going to sleep a while.  I always forget to sleep since I don't really have to.  But it's a good way to pass time when you're bored.  I guess I should also talk to Sigunn.

I got up, and Damien followed.  

 

"So um, she's an interesting lady," Valiana said, "You said she's killed like 60 dragons?  And that dragon-god?"

"You don't know the half of it.  I think she tries not to throw it in everybody's face, but she's a lot to live up to.  She spearheaded the civil war, and did a lot of the legwork in the Skyrim-Thalmor War.  She defeated the king of the vampires.  She made peace with the Forsworn in Skyrim and put the King of the Reach in the Jarl's throne.  I'd go on, but I don't think we have all day," Fenrir explained.

 

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Valiana blew some air out of her lungs, "Maybe if I keep hanging out with you guys I'll have a legend as big and meaty."

Fenrir laughed, then Valiana returned a big hearty chuckle.

"You may be right.  From what the locals told me, Runa and Jura just recently fought a big existential threat to mortals.  Even a small detachment of Thalmor got involved."

"Thalmor?  Ugh.  I can't say I hate them as much as... well, I guess I don't like the Imperials or Stormcloaks.  Present company accepted of course," Valiana smirked a little.  It was rare for Fenrir to see the woman crack a smile and he enjoyed it.

"Yeah, well.  Times have changed a lot since Beorlin was one of the Stormcloak commanders.  We always had people like Yngol and mom, but now a lot of the racist jerks have been pushed out.  We're like a proper army, not just a rabble.  I mean, look at me.  I'm half-Redguard.  There are a lot of Redguard and Imperial Stormcloaks.  Same for Sialius' Legion in Exile," Fenrir explained.

They smiled at each other, having completely moved past the awkwardness of seeing each others' naked bodies.  Perhaps, that is what I intended.  Somewhere between Sanguine's Debauchery and Dibella's Arts.

 

"So what's the deal with that Legion anyway?" Valiana asked.

"When the old Emperor was killed, also by my mom..." Fenrir started.

Valiana blinked, "Talos's balls, man!"

"Well it was the Elder Council's plot, and the Dark Brotherhood.  Which Runa is the head of."

Valiana scoffed, "You're awfully trusting, kid."

Fenrir smiled, not sure what to think of this, "What can I say?  I'm a sucker for pretty ladies."

Valiana rolled her eyes and shook her head, "Continue your story."

"Anyway, Ariel Sethius usurped the throne.  They pretty much continued to bow to the Thalmor.  General Sialius decided he had enough of rolling over and gathered his most faithful warriors into a new Legion and left Cyrodiil just as the Thalmor were moving to invade Skyrim.  Of course, they were scattered at first.  But a few individuals, one of them being Tyroni Calleius, urged Sialius to come and join forces with my mom and dad.  Ulfric and Destana.  Now that the war is over, this new Emperor business is boiling over.  Sialius said he wants to stay in Skyrim with his Legion, but he came with mom and an army to help out with this siege.  Of course, we'd already mostly handled them by then," Fenrir smiled.

"Pretty proud of yourself, eh?" Valiana smirked again.  Then she stood up.  As she stood before Fenrir, he looked up, meeting her one good eye, rather than looking at her chest.

 

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"At least you're respectful, though," she said, then walked out.

Fenrir sighed, sitting alone in the springs.

 

"That didn't go well," I said to Damien as we both listened to their conversation from the Inn room via Clairvoyance spell.

"Well, it's not as easy for everybody," Damien shrugged.

"What can I say?  I was raised in Gilane.  Major shipping port in Hammerfell.  We're exposed to different ideas from all over the world.  I'm an open book because I read so many other people-books from all over the world even at a young age," I said, "At least, that's how I justify my nymphomania."

Damien chuckled, "I want to say I don't need to hear about your sex-life.  But I've known you long enough to know I'm never going to stop hearing about it if I continue to associate with you."

 

From there, we waited a couple days and found out what Runa'd been up to, introduced her to her birth mother, and after a rocky start, They seemed to reach a level of understanding.  I guess I can see the resemblance.

 

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Sofia became the Countess of Bruma.  We all took a trip to the Imperial City (mostly, Runa and I both wanted to ride the airship).  Runa, Fenrir and Valiana were planning to search for some Cyrodillic treasure, after dropping us off.  Sofia came too, and we explained the situation and Jura just waved it off like, "Is everybody in agreement?  Alright then, by Imperial decree I declare Sofia the Countess of Bruma."

 

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Runa grabbed Calleius and they went off to do something.  Most the group definitely sidled up to her while they were talking to which she said, "Geez, everyone, give me some space!"

 

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Fenrir and Valiana left to take in sights of the city before they continued on.  I proceeded to talk to Jura about his new position as Emperor of Cyrodiil.  I tried to be official, wearing a crown and a dress, but I knew we were cut from the same cloth and formalities went out the window pretty quickly, much to the Chancellor's chagrin.

 

"Your High Chancellor, he's no Ocato," I commented.

"Yeah, but he's a very good administrator," Jura replied.

"So you're onboard with the invasion still, right?" I asked.

"Damn right I am!" Jura replied.

"What do the Counts think?  I've heard about all the maneuvering here.  Think they'll just hear your plan and just say 'nah' and have you 'dealt with?" I asked.

"I'd like to see them try," Jura said, and I smirked at him.  He was definitely my father.  He continued, "Whether they like it or not, there's a giant Sabertoothed Desert Tiger sitting on the throne now, and we're going to war.  I can interest them with spoils, I guess.  But also, there're a lot of people in Cyrodiil that are pissed with what Titus Mede did.  I'm aiming to do all the things Mede and Sethius did right, while correcting where they went wrong.  For example, I'm going to revive the idea of the Imperial Bank."

"Ugh, sounds like a logistics nightmare.  I may be a mage, but I don't like pedantic details," I replied.

"It's actually quite interesting," Jura said, putting his mansplaining cap on, "If people can borrow money, they can afford to buy houses, build houses, start businesses.  They can stick their neck out, and if they do well they can pay it back.  The bank makes money, we have a new blacksmith, or whathaveyou.  Positive sum, baby.  Everybody wins.  Also, banks can fund wars."

I scratched my chin, "This idea has merit.  Want me to talk to the Silver-Bloods and the East Empire Company?"

"I already talked to EE.  They're cold bastards, but they have the coin," Jura replied, "Consider opening a branch in Skyrim."

"I'll talk to Thongvar about it," I said.

 

From there we proceeded to talk about the specifics of the invasion, and I also told him all I'd learned of the layout of Alinor and Valenwood through my Arena forays.  This took several days, and Jura's letters in regards to the White Gold Accord were sent with Damien's help - directly to the leaders of the nations.  When we were ready, Damien and I flew Sofia back to Bruma, and we teleported back to Skyrim.

 

"So what're you going to do?" I asked him.

"Probably going to try and contact Solaire," he replied, "And of course, going to go see Bris and Sini."

I raised an eyebrow, not wanting to pry.  He really didn't seem very happy about that prospect.

"When you go to Sky Haven, could you tell Inigo the good news?" I asked.

"Of course."

 

I thought to myself I wasn't sure what I wanted to do at the moment.  But I was in Falkreath.  Riften wasn't far.  I took in a night flight to the Rift, wanting to feel the cool evening air instead of instantly moving to the place I was going.  I visited the Thieves' Guild, and realized a lot of the old regulars were moving on, letting a new generation move in.  And it made me a little sad.  Delvin had long been a property owner, which gave me an idea.  I decided I'd clear out my mailbox at Honeyside and put the house up for sale.  Or rent.  

 

When I walked in, three ruffians were waiting for me.  All Dunmer, all wearing inconspicuous leather armor.  Without word, they attacked. 

 

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But they were amateurs.  I searched their bodies.  Two of them were carrying notes with the official seal of a Morrowind house on them.

"The afore-mentioned personage has been marked for honorable execution in accordance to the lawful tradition and practice of the Morag Tong guild," I read.  The names, 'Destana Stormblade,' and 'The Nerevarine,' were on the two notes.

 

"Huh," I said to myself.  Their tracking skills were impeccable.  Either that or this was the first place they checked.  Guess they figured they'd get a two for one with this job.  I thought for a minute and remembered Runa said the Morag Tong had been re-established before she left for Cyrodiil.  But that was years ago in Morrowind and they'd supposedly been flattened by the Dark Brotherhood.  Of course, the DB also supposedly been snuffed out but they were stronger than ever.

 

But another question: was this a response to Jura's letters?  Outright assassination attempts?  Guess they're not onboard.  I figured I should probably tell the Nerevarine.  And since Iona was no longer here, but with the Blades now, I didn't have anybody I could just ask to clean it up.  

"I'll do this later," I said.  I teleported to Highreach and told the Nerevarine that he might need to fend off more assassins soon.  Then I talked to Thongvar Silver-Blood about the whole bank idea.  With an eerie glow to his eyes, he said he'd be happy to spearhead starting up the operation.

 

Since I was in the area, I decided I'd visit Solitude.  I didn't really have a reason, other than I didn't want to go search for the Gray Cowl of Nocturnal yet.  And as I was walking up to the Blue Palace I noticed one of the old buildings had had their outside wall knocked down and a gate had been mounted since a few days ago when I was last here.  I opened the gate and realized they'd been doing renovations to the interior of the building for a while.  

 

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"Dragonborn Gallery, eh?" I figured that was as good as an invitation to just walk right in and see what this was all about.

Inside was a small hallway that opened up into what looked like a much larger museum.  An altmer man inside walked over to me.

"Excuse me, can I help you?  The museum is currently closed until further notice," he said.

I decided I wouldn't play any of my many fame cards just yet.  I folded my arms, "So this is supposed to be a museum, opening soon?  Is there something I can do to help?"

Not really realizing who I was, perhaps new to the country, he said, "Well, you do look the adventuring sort... Perhaps you can.  You see, we are in need of a vast array of relics to display here at the museum.  I'm afraid the mercenaries and treasure hunters I've hired thus far have proven to be more trouble than they're worth. Perhaps I can give you a chance, however.  If you can bring me a few artifacts I'm looking for, I'll pay you for them.  If you prove successful, perhaps we can discuss some other opportunities I may have for you."

"Sure.  I was looking for a diversion," I said.

"Excellent.  Well, first and foremost I'd like to get my hand on one of the Sixth House Bell Hammers of the house of Dagoth.  One was stolen recently by some bandits held up in Broken Helm Hollow.  And there's Denstager's Ring, stolen from a local collector by the Silent Moon Bandits.   It's likely still in their hideout west of Whiterun, if they haven't fenced it yet that is.  And lastly a small shipment of Akaviri relics was on its way across Skyrim bound for Markarth.  There was a Jade carving amongst them.  The cargo men were summarily fired when we realized he sold some of the merchandise to some Forsworn."

 

"Alright.  Be back in a bit," I said.  I teleported to Markarth first.

 

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I just flew to the nearby camp that the curator'd mentioned.

I dropped down, walking right into the camp.  

"I'm warning you, back off!" One of them shouted. 

I'd been approaching from the back and noticed they weren't shouting at me.  A stormcloak was approaching on his own, foolhardy, with weapons drawn.  I was caught between two factions I was part of... but obviously this man was being an idiot.  I walked into the tent and grabbed the jade statue.

 

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When I came back out, I realized the Stormcloak had killed one of the Forsworn, and one of the others'd killed him. 

 

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I sighed.  I was about to teleport to my next destination - a dick move to be sure, but I decided not to.  Damien'd shown me the Resurrection spell at some point in time, which worked as long as the body was intact, and only if they'd died in the last few minutes (depending on the magicka you wanted to spend on it).  I resurrected the Forsworn first. 

The tribe was very thankful and I flashed the Jade statue as I was flying off with the Stormcloak body over my shoulder, "I'll take this as payment!"

 

About a mile down the road I set him down and cast Resurrection on him.  I let out a deep sigh.  That spell was tiring, took a ton of magicka.  

 

"But, wha... where am I?"

"Hey!" I slapped him, "Listen before you do another stupid thing.  Stop attacking the Forsworn.  They're our allies now."

"Who are you to tell me what to do?" He asked.

"I'm your queen, idiot.  I've given you the gift of your life back.  Don't squander it!"

The Stormcloak blinked, "I can't believe it... I've always wanted to study magery, but I never got the chance.  My brush with death has opened my eyes.  Thank you!"

I was already in the middle of casting teleport, to Whiterun this time.

 

I simply flew to the gates of the city, and hovered for a minute.  They'd really added a lot right outside the city recently.  New homes, new farms, windmills.  It reminded me of South Riften.

 

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So I flew to the Silent Moons Camp.  

 

{Destana Doing Treasure Hunting 1}

 

I was happy to be by myself against hordes of objectively bad and not skilled enemies for once.  I took to stealth.  Moving from target to target, I slew the blond woman enjoying a water break in the first room, then slit the throat of an Argonian door guard in the second room.  Then a shirtless man in the third room, looting a chest as I went.  The hallway had an archer, and I heard the sound of an explosion in the nearby room.

 

I took out my bow and shot him, waited for him to go for help, opening the door, then slashed him across the back.  I grabbed the ring.  Easy.  But hearing sounds of people talking, I looked around, paranoid for a moment.  Finally, when I exited, I opened the back entrance and found a gryphon flying overhead.  I'd never seen a gryphon before (more of a High Rock, Hammerfell, Elswyer and Summerset thing).  So I was compelled to see it closer.  But as it landed I realized it was attacking a herd of red cattle and mammoths, who were with no giants.  

 

Wondering if my beast call would work, I ran up behind it as it was fighting and called, "KAKE!" And it didn't affect the Gryphon, but the aurochs and mammoths all flocked to my aid.  As soon as it landed, about 100 feet away, they were on it.  I lended a hand in killing it with my bow, but it was mostly the mammoth.  Just as I was assessing the wounds of the peaceful creatures, throwing heals on them, the rest of the bandits attacked us.  Probably returning from a hunt, or a mugging.  The cattle and I fought them off handily, but when I was done I noticed a calf was dead.  So I resurrected it.  Got to remember this power when times are tough later on.

 

From there I teleported to Riften after releasing the creatures from my service.

 

{Destana Doing Treasure Hunting 2}

 

I exited the gate and flew east up to the hidden cliff entrance of the bandits, Broken Helm Hollow.  Finding an Imp outside, I stealthed past him.  I continued in with stealth again, finding crude rattle traps that I walked around.  In the main cave I found a large group of slavers and a captive wench.  So, I guess, second objective.  Even though the slave trade is mostly underground these days, these guys really never quit.  I knew this was going to be a bit of a harder fight. 

 

And I was right.  I shot the first one in the shoulder, but he came for me anyway.  Then the whole group charged, instantly ready with swords and buff spells.  I pegged a few with arrows before backing out to the passageway again.  I hesitated, thinking such a large group would be prime targets for Elemental Bolts.  But then I smiled, readying Black WInter.  As they came around the corner a couple slashed me, but it wasn't enough to stop the long wind-up time.  I blasted them to bloody ice shards.  Still, three more had hanged back (the smart ones) so I reengaged with by bow, as not to risk hitting the wench in the corner with blasts.  I traded a few arrow shots with their arrows and spells, then I used the pillar for cover to ambush them with my melee weapons.  I actually had a bit of trouble with these guys - the cream of the bandit crop, even having to heal myself.  With them all dead, I raided their treasure room and got the artifact.  Then I freed the wench.  Overall, a close one.  But nothing I couldn't handle.

 

"Help me!" She shouted.

"Grab on.  You're safe now," I replied, then teleported to Riften, where I handed her over to Shaed, the bard.  I waved to Mjoll, then teleported back to Solitude to turn in all the artifacts.

 

"Phenomenal!" He said, "Very impressive.  You're certainly more than a mere treasure hunter.  I am in need of a full partner of sorts.  A person of your caliber who can dedicate themselves to uncovering more lost artifacts and relics on their own, while I continue my research efforts."  He went on to describe a partnership where they give me a finder's fee, I let them hold on to artifacts.  But you know me, long-winded people bore me.  He also gave me a tour of the museum, as it stood.  AT the end of his spiel I found myself in a different hall.  

 

"So, got anything else for me to find, right now?" I asked.

"Oh yes, I have in fact been researching the location of an artifact of interest.  If you have the time you could investigate it.  I'll mark the location on your map," he replied.

 

When I looked down I realized he'd marked Wolfskull Cave.  I shrugged.  It wasn't that far from Solitude, so I flew.  When I landed, I found Vigilents of Stendarr finishing off a group of Volkihar Vampires.  Eager to stop them, I stuck my nose into the fight.  They took me as one of the vampires (which... I am a vampire, I guess) and turned on me to attack.  

 

{Destana Doing Treasure Hunting 3}

 

These guys... were not the cream of the crop.  I terminated them with extreme prejudice, taking their healthy supply of potions and gold.  Inside, there didn't seem to be a soul, but I remembered the back exit was in the first room, so I just used my amazing jumping skills and skipped the entire damn dungeon.  Emerging in the underground city, I found... the same swirling purple light I'd found last time I was here!  Another group was trying to summon a great, ancient evil here!  I snuck up to the drawbridge and looked at the distance.  Not even my jumping could bridge that gap.  Though I might've gambled with Whirlwind Sprint, I decided I would just fly.  The cultists were wrapped in their ritual, so I floated over.  But they saw me when I plugged the ritual master with an arrow, so I jumped down the stairs of the tower and found a Draugr Scourge there, shouting at me.  

 

I pursed my lips, "Good idea!"

I turned and stepped back to the top of the stairs to all the mages throwing up their armor buffs and blasted at least four off the top of the tower with, "FUS - RO - DAH!"  They were most certainly paste on the structures below.

The ritual master resisted, but was still staggered, and I laid into him.  Him and his one necromancer didn't pose much of a threat.  I grabbed the book off the altar, fought off the annoying Draugr Scourge as he finally came up the stairs, then looted the ritual master for the artifact.  A Bloodworm Helm, originally held by Mannimarco. 

 

Realizing dozens of draugr were now waking up below, I said, "Fuck this," and teleported back to Solitude, my job done.  What a day.  It was starting to get dark outside.  I made a stop in the Blue Palace and told Falk I'd taken care of a dangerous group of cultists in Wolf Skull Cave again.  You know, the usual.  The curator was nowhere to be found.  I decided I would offload some of my random artifacts, though I had no intention of cleaning out my bag, that was full of years worth of priceless things.

 

I threw the three Elder Scrolls in my possession in the gallery.  After all, what could go wrong just displaying them there for everybody to see?  I walked around looking for the man for a solid while.  Eventually I decided to wait until morning.  I teleported to Highreach, had a break for a few hours, then teleported back in the morning, handing him the helm.  I knew Damien would want to see it, so I made a mental note to tell him about it when I saw him next.  

 

With it getting late, I decided I would head back to Highreach for the night.  When I teleported in, Thongvar was waiting for me.

"Your highness, I've got the banking system figured out after talking with the EE and the Empire.  And what do you know, people are excited about being able to buy and build new property.  You might notice a lot of new 'For Sale' signs all over the place, because people think they can actually sell their property now."

"That's cool," I said, noncommittally, "You did that pretty fast."

"I can definitely move coin.  One of my specialties," Thongvar smiled.

 

I went to sleep to stave off my need for blood, though I did also drink one in the morning.  Figured I'd be okay for at least a few days.  I headed back to Solitude that morning, but the curator didn't have any leads for me, so I took a stroll.  I did find a lot of new deeds.  The Winking Skeever was on sale for 100k!  Some people's houses were on sale too.  And wait... hold on!

I had almost passed Thongvar's house, but there was a for sale sign.  And not the 'you buy the house you live in the house' kind.  The 'you buy the house the tenant pays rent kind.'  Turns out mister rich guy didn't own his own house.  The Jarl did.

 

I walked right up to Elisif and threw down a sack with 15,000 gold in it, "I want to buy Erikur's house."

Elisif shrugged, "Sure.  Hand the coins to Falk."

I turned to him, and he was wearing a nice new blue tunic.

"Looking good, Falk," I handed him the coin.

 

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I walked back to the sign, ripped down the notice and wrote my own.  

 

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Weekly rent: 1100 gold.  I cackled with glee.  I walked back into the Blue Palace.  Erikur was just walking out as I was walking in.

"Hey, guess what?"

"What do you want?" He barked.

 

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"You're never going to guess what I just bought," I smiled.

"I've had just about all I'm willing to take from you.  What is it?" He asked, even more angrily.

"I just bought your house from the Jarl.  Your rent is 1100 gold, due weekly," I smiled.

"But... but my family..." He growled.  But he knew he couldn't do anything.  

I turned to the dais and waved at Falk.  A Stormcloak guard, thinking I was waving at him said, "Dragonborn... it is my honor to stand before you.  Whatever you need, just say the word."

I smiled at the guy, then said to Erikur, "You could learn a thing or two from this guy."

Then I turned back to the guard, "I don't need anything, buddy.  You're doing a great job."

 

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Having had enough fun with the joke, I decided I would get serious and actually buy some real estate that could make me money.  

I checked my bag, "About 220K.  And I have 100 more tucked away at home.  That's enough to buy a few things."

I shrugged, maybe thinking one of the mines that'd been taken over by bandits would be a good place to start.  There was a big old one north of Riften:  Echo Deep Mine.  I teleported to Riften and as I was walking out of town I found a group of bandits attacking the guards, which I helped.  These bandits seemed pretty organized and tough.  They managed to kill one guard, though I bit the bullet and resurrected him.  

 

"Where do you think their base is nowadays?  Now that we hold most the forts," I said.

"Probably Echo Deep Mine.  They say it's rich with resources, and deep," the guard replied.  So I flew to Echo Deep.  I entered with the utmost stealth, but I found there was a HUGE number of bandits patrolling the entryway.  

 

At this rate there was no way for them to not see me, so I blasted them with Unrelenting Force and laid into the first.  A mage in the back blasted me with fireballs and I knew this was going to be a tough battle.

 

Outside, their sheer numbers and power overwhelmed me.  I figured out who'd they been looking for: a Minotaur interloper.  I thought they were extinct, but perhaps not.  Once their focus was on me, they forgot about him.  

I was brought down by two mages focus firing me (literally).  I'm strong, but I'm not invincible.  I was able to kill a few, but there were a lot more.

 

 

Stripping off my clothes, they piled on, doing what they wanted.  This seemed to be the nerve center for all the bandits of the region, maybe of Skyrim, because these guys were well trained.  Once they started having their way with me, the Minotaur seemed to side with them, and my eyes grew wide when I wondered if he wanted a piece.  

 

The bandits thought they were being rough.  They thought I was going to be destroyed by this treatment as they took turns on me.  They didn't know me.  I'd had worse.  My body glowed red as they touched every inch of my body, as they forced their way into my orifices.  When they'd all finished, they dropped me on the ground, and one of them clobbered me on the back of the head.  

 

I wasn't conscious for the next part, but I could feel their energy pouring into me, killing them and filling me with life and knowledge.  I woke up what seemed like hours later.  All their bodies were gone, and I was fully dressed.  I blinked and surveyed the scene around me.  Did the minotaur kill the woman (who would've been alone), then take all their bodies off to where he lived?  Did minotaur eat humans?  It was worth figuring out.  I found a bear cub hanging out with a saddled but not tied-up horse (probably belonging to the bandits).

 

I took a deep breath and let it out.  I actually felt stronger, like I'd rested all night in only a couple hours.  But I didn't like how I got there.  And there was no 'For Sale' sign or anything, but that was to be expected.  Maybe I needed to kill everything in this mine.  In the most painful way possible.  Just to be safe.  I walked back into the mine, finding some of the guards had already been replaced now.  

 

As I snuck up behind the first guard he said something like, "Going to retire someday, buy myself a farm."

I slashed him across the body, killing him instantly.

 

{Destana Explores Echo Deep Mine}

 

This time as I pushed forward I was very careful, killing from stealth.  No way I was going to engage such a huge group again.  I went on terminating them with extreme prejudice.  Beheading, blasting, nothing was off the table.  And I found they had their own command structure:  spymasters, chiefs, mages, warriors, etc.  And they were even using paper money!  Which I stole, of course.  When I got to their Bandit Chief, he fought me alone using a quarterstaff.  And he was very tough.  When I checked the chest behind him it had several piece worth thousands of septims, some extremely rare spells, a very nice greatsword, a pair of Vampire boots...

 

I looked at them, "Talos fucking shit!"

They had 9 enchantments on them, each an extremely high amount.  I did some mental calculations and figured, "These are worth like 180K by themselves."  They were worth so much I doubt I could even find somebody to sell them to.  I continued on and found a Dwemer Ruin, but when I reached the bottom, there were a bunch of destroyed Dwarven Centurions and I found nothing else I could do.  So I looted everything I could and left.  I found no way to buy the mine, so I just teleported back to Riften.  I High Alchemy'd a lot of the stuff I had (including all the paper money), but then I also asked the fences if they could find a buyer for these boots I'd found.  They pretty much all had the reaction I did - abject shock.  

 

"I don't care if you get full price from it.  50k, maybe?" I asked.  I knew if I used High Alchemy on the boots they'd give me like 100 gold, for the base price of the boots.  But these things were made by an enchanting master of a bygone era.  What I don't understand was why the bandits weren't using them?!

 

Tonilia said she might be able to get a buyer.  But I'd probably see them again.  To which I countered, "Well, then we're going to be selling them again!"  She laughed.

 

I figured it was time to get serious and go to the next step of the Cowl.  I stopped in at Warmaiden's and the Bannered Mare in Whiterun and bought them.  Also, Radiant Raiment in Solitude.

Then I looked at how much gold I had left.

 

image.jpeg.7d4914857e53479d06f6f70bb0287110.jpeg

 

"OOF," a little part of me died inside, until I realized I needed to High Alchemy all the old crap that was lying around, which put me at about 14K.  Which was enough to survive.  I stopped at the Winking Skeever and took all the 'kill bandit leader' 'kill monster' ads on the Notice Boards outside.  Then I scooted off to Falkreath to find the entrance for the Grey Cowl expedition. 

 

image.jpeg.b10f790da51efdec4634edafadb22157.jpeg

 

I flew into the mountains.  There was a fairly easy two lever operation which involved a lot of doors that opened two gates in my way, but I also could've just flown over the gate, I guess. 

 

image.jpeg.1df1a17d18384694303e3b4a15295198.jpeg

 

I pulled the levers and walked inside to find a bust of the Grey Fox in a long passage.  I touched it, and the eyes glowed, lighting up a pillar of purple light on a raised dais before me.

 

image.jpeg.a40112201d7bf5e208df5279ba7ffb68.jpeg

 

 

Spoiler

At some point during my descent I realized it was not possible to buy the mine, because it was added by Falskaar.

 

"How did you know about the parts you weren't there for?"

"Best not to worry about it.  Trying to make a narrative here.  And Fenrir and Valiana needed a scene."

 

The differences are subtle with their bodies, but Fenrir is just a bit taller and more muscular than Damien.  I made Damien's weight a little low, though I have brought him up a little after Skygerfall (lots of running around and wearing armor).  Destana is thin, whereas Valiana has bigger arms and calves.

 

Sorry, the shared narrative might be getting a little confusing.  In the next Runa entry, it's going to start at the Imperial City (that's when the Bonus Entry happened) and then they'll continue on to Nagasel.  Obviously, Destana diverged from them there and went back to Skyrim to continue her solo adventure.

 

Yes I did add Google's Bank of Skyrim mod.  This will be reasoning to add even more town overhaul mods/new towns.  And probably going to add Real Estate, maybe Stock Market of Skyrim (though that one seems really iffy on the coding).  Edit:  And I removed it, because all my money disappeared when I deposited 0 gold into the bank.  I made a bug report and reverted my save.  

 

Yep, I got got for the first time in a long time.  But I mean there were a LOT of high level bandits and my challenge is on Master.  

 

You know what's a good mod I just discovered?  Gear Spreader.  Don't need to make Bashed patches as I continue to add more equipment mods I don't actually need.  Also, it's what made the 180K boots that are impossible to sell.

 

You know what is pretty messed up through?  Legacy of the Dragonborn basically co-opts Dev Aveza.  When I logged into Fenrir, everybody was assembled on the airship.  But instead they just fell to their deaths because the airship disappeared.  I think I was able to fix it, though the MCM's wording is confusing.  I might need to switch off LOTD when I play Fenrir and Runa, which is annoying.

 

This is probably my most ambitious entry yet.  Not in words or pictures, but in number of videos.  

 

Edited by EnragedBard

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Alright, D. is back in the game, no doubt about it. Very good.

 

But before that: What the heck is going on in that bathhouse?! Seriously, the group-screenshots freaked me out a little. Specifically the one were D. is standing in between Damien and Fenrir with Valiana sitting with her back towards the camera. Do Damien, Destana and Fenrir suffer from crazy-stretchy-neck syndrom or what? 🤨 That was quite spooky.

 

Next in line: D. being nosy (again)!

Spying together with Damien on Fenrir. Bad D.&D.!😁

Come to think of it: Poor Fenrir really doesn't seem to have much luck with his "girlfriends". First that synode-mage from Cyrodiil, that ran off with 6000 Septims and now Valiana, who doesn't seem to be all that impressed with him at the moment.

 

Speaking of Valiana: I hope D. and Valiana will find some common interests, that will allow them to bond. Like their mutual fondness of clobbering bad guys and their love for (presumably) comfy black bras.

 

Runa, Runa, Runa. You really need to learn, how to do things in a more surreptitious and sneaky way. When you need to have a serious and private talk with your BF, you do NOT just grab him by the scruff of his neck and drag him towards the door in front of your entire family. Even more so, if aformentioned family contains the most nosy pair around, commonly known as D&D. That's like asking them to be extra-nosy.

 

Next: BWAHAHAHAHAHA.... Erikur.....BWAHAHAHA!

 

About that part in Echo-Deep-Mine: Good thing, that D. is such a remarkable badass. I take it, her deadly drain kicked in during that scene? Or was that just fluff in the story, to explain why she made it out? Also: Lucky her, that none of the bandits had the bright idea to run off with her money while the others had had their way with her.

As a sidenote: I think that for chaotic scenes like the one with the bandits  IFPV is not really that great. While it certaily got D.'s desperate struggle across quite nicely, it also ment far to much clipping of bodyparts for my liking. And judging by how you edited the video, I think we are on the same page in this regard.

 

EB "I stopped in at Warmaiden's and the Bannered Mare in Whiterun and bought them.  Also, Radiant Raiment in Solitude."

 

If these three shops together cost enough to almost eat up all of D.'s money, than I wonder how (in vanilla Skyrim) Isolda is EVER supposed to be able to afford even one of them. Perhaps her drug-dealing business is far more profitable than anyone knew.

 

I take it, next in line for D. will be obtaining the Grey Cowl? Another mod, that I started at one point but never finished. From what I remember, this should be an intersting one, though. And of course: A bit of a homecoming for her too.

Certainly looking forward to that.👍

 

 

 

 

Edited by HM1919
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I did notice the little hint, that something might be going on between Damien and Brisianna. However, I will be a good reader, and wait until it is time for that plot-point to be fully revealed. 

Edited by HM1919
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Her deadly drain kicked in, but I got locked into bleedout, so they were dead and I was unable to do anything. 

SO I HAD TO RELOAD AFTER FIVE MINUTES OF BEING SUBJECTED TO THEIR BS!!  EPC didn't even work.  I cry, then I loaded the game.  You may notice there's a second of draining (I glow red) during the scene.  I didn't bother draining more because I have it default to Drain to Death on rape.  In hindsight, I probably should've, since that's almost certainly what locked me in bleedout.  I was at almost no health when I exited the scene.  Or, I dunno.  /Shrug.  Skyrim is Skyrim.

 

That minotaur was a random spawn, and I intend on explaining it later.  But the explanation is humans exist in other worlds.  So do minotaurs.

 

Yeah I didn't use much of the IFPV in this one.  It's hard to control with so many actors in the same scene.  Usually I do a fov 120, and only use it in the 1:1 scenes, but I wanted to try it out.  I figured third person view was better for most of it.  Most of the editing I did was to remove the door loading screen, and to remove the MASSIVE amount of script lag I have when I start a Sexlab scene now.  About 30 seconds.  I do have a LOT of mods.  My method is usually manually remove my clothes and open the console, and just wait.  The problem is only with Destana's game, probably because there's just so much stuff in the world, and pretty much all mods are affecting Destana.  Each of the kids has a much smaller set of things they've done.

 

As for Fenrir, yeah, he's not having a lot of luck.  I'm going somewhere.  This trend may continue.

 

As far as necks are concerned, part of it might've been the low angle.  But also the boys were looking up at the time.  Destana.  The D is for De Looooong Neck.

 

I like D&D.  I might use that for a title of a Destana and Damien adventure.

Edited by EnragedBard
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I forgot Ysolda wanted to buy the Bannered Mare.  Might have a little aside about that in the story later.  

 

And yes, I am also going somewhere with Bris and Damien.  One thing I like to do is portray a diverse sample of different relationships (and how people relate to one another) and people in my work, and DiNTD is no exception.  Though this might not be as deep and well-thought out as my actual novels, and is mostly just for fun, I have put some thought into how people are together.

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Ouch, sounds like Destana wasn't the only one in pain during that echo-deep-scene.

If I am not mistaken, the animation playing was one of the FunnyBizzness ones, no? From what I remember, they tend to have rather exaggerated motions in general, which certainly doesn't help when you want to use IFPV.

 

As for the D&D-part: You already have Beholders in your Skyrim. Sooo... I am sure, that could be turned into something.

 

Well, Fenrir is the mundane one of the bunch. No crazy magical talents, no fancy vampirism going on, just a good, oldfashioned nerd with a deep-seated interest in dwemer-tech. If push comes to shove, he could always build himself a dwemer-style machine-gf or something.

 

p.s. I am not doubting that you have plans for your characters. Just wanted to point out, that the hint was not lost on me.

Edited by HM1919
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Hehe, nothing like back to the roots, though getting gang raped again is perhaps a bit to back to the roots. OPTO perhaps it's good for a grand hero(ine) to occasionally get put back into her place. Nice speed tour anyway. Always good if the fronts are clear for a change. ^^
Wolfskull Cave again? That got lost when you had to get back a good number of saves once?

Interesting detail, the DB has to buy a house in order to become Thane, but seems once you are Thane you don't need to own property in the city anymore. OTOH I remember Erikur owning the building Radiant Rainment is situated in, well hopefully he doesn't evicts them to move into that house. More likely though, he will just increase their rent again to help pay his rent. So as nice as D. might feel about getting to Erikur, she might instead hurt other people instead with that move.

32.4 times sneak damage ... and I thought the 16 times I had achieved once were WAY overpowered, but then those were steady while yours seems to vary a lot.
Still perhaps not to add Way of the Monk ... I shudder thinking what a Monster that might create. Four more levels till the Ebony Warrior is waiting ... with Way of the Monk added into the mix I don't seem him last long. ;)

Have to admit I skipped parts of the videos. They made me nauseous, particularly in first person view. That's sadly something I'm pretty prone too. Gotta keep my Frame Rate steady even in my games (and even in WoW some activity like searching herbs in certain areas could trigger it, even with good FPS). Probably nothing you need to worry about. Most people seem to cope with a bit of jerky movements better than me.

So you got Deadly Drain installed ... for a moment I had wondered if you had turned D. into a Succubus too. It all sounded so familiar to what tends to happen in such situations in my current Player Succubus Quest centric game. ^^
While I share your script-load problem to an extend, certainly opening the console to get SL started, I've not yet experienced  getting  stuck in bleedout. Might be because I'm using Naked Defeat though, which handles things a bit different from the venerable SL Defeat.

As for Fenrir well all the more reason he gets some help from a friend in the form of Meru (yeah, yeah I gonna shut up about her now ... maybe. ^^)

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To a certain extent I'm guiding the narrative towards certain things, but to some extent I'm not fully in control of what happens. That group rape was not in the plan. 

 

Yeah I'm not sure what happened with Wolf Skull. Ive had to do quite a few take backs in thie playthrough, so things get lost sometimes. I feel like I handled it well. Comically. "More cultists?? Again??"

 

Ebony warrior will probably be a while. I don't exactly level up fast.  It took me a lot of killing to get from 74 to 76. 

 

I've had Deadly Drain installed and working for a while, just don't get any opportunities to use it.  I used it in the Thalmor prison, but not to any great effect. The idea behind it is she's using her vampire drain through the points of skin contact. 

 

Sorry about the video thing. I tend to play pretty twitchy in first person,  and usually use first person for ranged attacks. 

 

I'm not sure what happened with the bleedout. It is possible DA and Defeat were fighting for what came next, even though everybody was dead. Or maybe they both got confused by Deadly Drain killing everybody (except the woman, who I can confirm was killed by the minotaur, who then proceeded to wander off, since he's not a creature in Creatures Framework).  And there I was, just looking pitiful.  More testing is required. 

 

Meru and Fenrir crossover. That's not a bad idea. 

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Also I bought Radiant Raiment, so maybe I'm trying to ruin Erikur. I dunno.......   🙃

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Ah yes, "The Ruination of Erikur: From snooty Riches to tear-soaked Rags".

I think, that play would have the potential to become the most memorable comedy of the decade in D.'s Skyrim.👍

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2 hours ago, EnragedBard said:

To a certain extent I'm guiding the narrative towards certain things, but to some extent I'm not fully in control of what happens. That group rape was not in the plan. 

I guess that kinda keeps it interesting for you too, it certainly is does force you to come up with innovative narrative solutions occasionally. Can't imagine that being bad practice for a novelist. ^^

 

 

2 hours ago, EnragedBard said:

Yeah I'm not sure what happened with Wolf Skull. Ive had to do quite a few take backs in thie playthrough, so things get lost sometimes. I feel like I handled it well. Comically. "More cultists?? Again??"

You sure did, without the Falk scene in the video I would've assumed that indeed one of your mods added a new set of cultists into that place after it got cleared out.
Btw. your Falk looks weird IMO. More like a Redguard. Falk Firebeard, now if that does not sound like a pale skinned, red haired Norse ...  😁
 

1 hour ago, EnragedBard said:

Also I bought Radiant Raiment, so maybe I'm trying to ruin Erikur. I dunno.......   🙃

Interesting, so either Erikur does not own the Radiant Rainment building after all. Despite that exchange with his sister about him raising their rent all the time (might be he is in charge of managing the Jarls property), or you bought it from him. Which is not really helping in ruining him, certainly not short term.
Well, or that mod simply messed things up ... which might be the most likely explanation. ;)

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I take it, poor Valiana has been told (or realized herself?), that Destana is a vampire? Otherwise D.'s introduction as Damien's and Fenrir's mom could have been yet another WTF?!-moment for her. After all, D. doesn't really look that much older then the two young men.

Nevermind her reaction if/when she will find out, what happend to Runa recently.

Even a stoic individual like herself might begin to question at that point, what she has gotten herself into. 😁

So yeah, I do hope, that we will see abit more of her at some point.

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My Falk is experiencing the Dark Face bug in that shot. 

 

Valiana doesn't know Destana is a vampire. She doesn't even know her age.  Maybe she's aged well.  Really a lot of 30 year olds could pass for 20-somethings. 

 

Of course Destana should be 40-something with the boys' ages. Val hasn't yet asked about their mom being so young-looking, but that could be explained by the time-stuff that's been happening lately with Skyrim, which most people are atleast vaguely aware of since it affected supply lines and their ability to travel to Skyrim for 5 years. 

 

Also a good thing to think about. 

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I see. I agree, that the time-shenanigans could be used to explain her looks to some extend. Or her being the dragonborn could explain it as well. However, I think that, if V. is supposed to stay for a while, then she should be told. Or be allowed to find out by herself. Because D.'s eyes are still rather unusual. And since Valiana is supposed to be a well traveled individual, she ought to realize, that something is different about Destana (and Serana too). Furthermore, since she already has bee told, that Runa is the boss of the DB and that it was D. who killed the old emperor, I don't really see, why the vampire thing should be off limits. It would be just one more little secret among friends, right?🙂

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Yes, but it doesn't actually fix it all the time.  

 

I also have the Dark Face Fix spell, which I just apply to people as I see them.

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I have something to report.  Gear Spreader, the mod that planted that 180k pair of boots, spreads things from my mods into the world and to NPCs, which is very immersive and cool.  Seen a lot of nobles wearing cool clothes, and new types of armor.  THIS MOD HAS SURPRISED ME AGAIN.

 

1610591418_LiteralBaby.jpg.99f544ea2203e52e37a8735470414dd2.jpg

 

 

Yes, a literal baby inside a chest.  Spread from Fertility Mode.  How did it get here?  Who left this baby here?  How is it still alive?

Edited by EnragedBard
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4 hours ago, EnragedBard said:

Yes, but it doesn't actually fix it all the time.  

 

I also have the Dark Face Fix spell, which I just apply to people as I see them.

Ok, I've been lucky then (or not sufficiently aware). As mentioned, since I added that mod I've not seen the dark face bug crop up.

A baby ... well, I guess the mod authors could not cover all silly no goes. If they even tried at all, sounds like a pretty Herculean task for sure. ^^

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I can make exceptions in the ini.  And now I will. But also, this has to be resolved in the story. 

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Hahaha... Poor D. She only went there, to find a simple Grey Cowl of Nocturnal. And now she has to figure out, what to do with this little one. Again, her body-language says it all: "Divines, why me? What have I done, to earn this kind of curveball?"

 

Perhaps Serana can help out here. Since she and the other Volkihars are already the cuddly, friendly-neighborhood vampires of Skyrim, I don't see an immediate problem with her adopting this little guy/gal. Keeping in mind, that she seemingly isn't much into the whole adventuring-thing as of late, she even would have the time, to take care of business herself. If she is interested in the first place, of course. If she is, then this may even be an opportunity for her and Valerica to mend their relationship a little.

 

The other option IMO, would be (maybe, possibly, potentially) Valiana. Since she (for understandable reasons) wasn't  around to be a mom last time. And by now is perhaps a little old to have further kids of her own. Therefore an adoption might be the way to go, if she still has ambitions to be a mom.

 

All of this is of course only possible, as long as D. doesn't manage to find the "real" parents of the baby. If, let's say, Destana found him/her in the lair of some bad guys, then it would be fairly plausible, that there had been a kidnapping. Fortunately it just so happend, that D. arrived just in the nick of time to save the little human from a fate most horrible. And will now do her best to return him/her home.

Edited by HM1919
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I haven't forgotten Honorhall. Just figured that maybe Runa would not like the idea of sending anyone there. Even if old Grelod is long gone, I would not be surpised, if she developed a bit of a dislike towards the place, no matter what.

 

Besides, Serana and Valiana are almost the only two in D.'s closest circle, who haven't tried their hand at parenting yet. I mean, even Runa is going to be kind of a parent soon-ish. Which is certainly something, that no-one would have expected just a few in-universe month ago.

 

Ultimately, as usual, it's your call.👍

 

p.s. Fenrir isn't a dad either, of course. But he hasn't even found himself a GF yet, so I left him out of the list of possible candidates. IMO it would be just a little cruel and unusual to give him all of the responsibilities without letting him experience at least some of the associated fun-stuff beforehand.

Edited by HM1919
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Hi, still catching up.

 

Legacy of the Dragonborn is amazing, but they're not kidding when they say you should start a new playthrough for it. I'm not sure how well it will work for you, especially with so many other mods installed. It also doesn't seem to play well with the Anniversary Edition since it duplicates much of the Creation Club content (Bow of Shadows, Wraithguard and Sunder, etc.) Not sure if you're using that.

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