On the island of Solstheim, inhabitants work day and night to scratch a living from the ash-covered land. Some people have bound together in groups of mercenary bands to fulfill jobs that would otherwise not be completed. Usually mercenary bands are stationary, staying in one town, but when one is ousted from a town due to poor quality work or raising prices too high, the groups can be ran out of town, adrift with the ash. One such group is the Argonian band known as the Wet Netches, kicked from their previous town due to high prices, the group recently moved into Raven Rock and is looking to make their mark on the port city. Their leader, Hunts Palepwoon, goes out to wrangle new business for his group.
Hunts Palepwoon (stretching): Another day on this ash covered rock. Better go see what work people are offering. We won’t make a reputation for ourselves if we don’t get to work exploiting these people.
Retching Netch Tavern
Hunts Palepwoon: ...and that there Mr. Splitter is the competitive advantage we bring to Raven Rock. So, do you have any work available?
Splitter: It’s Splitter…and no.
Eira: Hey there, Mr. Splitter! I heard you requested me personally for your BIG Contract! I’m always ready tackle any job your have for me.
Hunts Palepwoon: Splitter, my group will complete the work for half the price of whatever this girl quoted you.
Splitter: Be gone Lizardman, I can’t trust you complete my work. This job is going to Eira and the Sylphs.
Raven Rock Temple
Hunts Palepwoon: ...As you can see, Grand Elder, the Wet Netches are the new power in Raven Rock. Any work you need done should come to us first….
Dior: What the hell do you think you’re doing Scales? Get off my turf! The Elder awarded his contract to the Scarlet Sylphs.
Silently the Elder Dunmer Nods his head.
Dior: Get out of here Scales, go back to whatever ash cave you crawled out of!
Guard: We do occasionally ask for assistance from the populace to defend our settlement yes, but …
Hunts Palepwoon: But that’s where we come in Mr. Guard… Our group will handle security you go on and enjoy your life. Let us handle…
Varina: Bit of advice for you, Argonian. That guard won’t let anyone take his work until he’s seen you fight first hand. Because it’s his duty to make sure this town stays safe and not fall to pieces because some tadpole thought he and his Bandit crew could defend the Bulwark.
Varina: Don’t worry, Oldar. The Sylphs will take care of the Bulwark and the Ashmen today. You just take the rest you need. Want me to take this Argonian outside while I’m at it?
Guard: Yes, Please...here’s an extra 5 gold for the trouble.
After a morning of fierce rejection, forced removal, and subsequent beratement, Hunts Palepwoon found himself at the Retching Netch once again without any work. He did, however, find himself 5 gold richer. Varina dropped it on him after throwing him out of the Bulwark.
Hunts Palepwoon: These Scarlet Sylphs seem to have every contract in town. If we can’t break their hold on this town, the Wet Netches will have too….I need a drink.
Hunts Palepwoon: Bartender, your strongest sujamma! Also, you wouldn’t happen to have any work would you?
Bartender: Sorry traveler, all the work in this town is pretty much done by the Scarlet Sylphs. In fact, I don’t think there’s a single job in town that’s completed without their knowing.
An evil thought passed through Hunts’ mind as he downed his drink.
Hunts Palepwoon (to himself): If we can’t get their contracts through the legitimate way, we’ll have to try another...
Hunt Palepwoon: Barmen! Could you point out the leader of this Scarlet Sylphs to me? I may have a contract for her.
Bartender: Sure thing, I’ll let her know you’re looking for her. For a finder’s fee of course….
3 Hours Later
An enthusiastic red-headed woman ran down the steps into the Retching Netch.
Adrea: ALRIGHT, SYLPHS! Who’s ready to make some money?!?!
Adrea (defeated): Aww, looks like Dior is gonna kill me for being late again. Better see what they’re up too.
Adrea: Hey Bartender! Do you know what my girls are up to today? Are they busy, like they should be?
Bartender: Very much so, Eira had that job for Splitter, Varina was checking in on the Bulwark, and Dior was getting ready for the Ashmen. The only person not working today is YOU!
Adrea: Mr. Bartender, you’re so mean! Of course I’m working. I worked on my hair this morning, translated a few texts, practiced a new spell…
Bartender: You were sleeping in again weren’t you?
Adrea: Can you blame me? I need my sleep! I work all night on magic stuff.
Bartender: We all appreciate your hard work, Adrea. But you need to get some actual work done. Otherwise your team members may kick you out of your own group. Here, I’ve got a contact that needs you to do something. He’s the Argonian right behind you.
Adrea (excitedly): That sounds dull and boring. You know what doesn’t sound boring? Exploring that tomb I read about in the texts yesterday. Bye Mr. Bartender! See you later on tonight!
Hunts Palepwoon: So that’s their leader, huh? She definitely has energy to spare. Thanks for your introduction.
Hunts threw a coin pouch on the bar and walked away.
Hunts Palepwoon (to himself): I’ll follow her and see where she goes. If the opportunity is right, I’ll take her and force her to give up all of her contracts for her life. Wet Netches might make a killing in this town after all.
Adrea: So this is the Tomb of Vahlok the Jailor? The entrance isn’t much, especially for a rule that was so well regarded. At least in the texts he was. But Ancient Nords have been known to embellish how great their rulers were.
Adrea: They certainly built a huge Chamber for his tomb. I wonder if these caves are all natural or man made?
Adrea: Lots of dead Draugr here. And it looks like this room doesn’t go anywhere. Wait, what’s the over there?
Adrea: There might have been a bridge here at one time, but I guess the wood has been rotted away? There’s no way I can jump that.
Adrea: It does look like this water is deep. Maybe there’s an underwater cave system to get through this?
Adrea: Well, this proves it then, these steps lead straight into the pool below. And it looks deep. Guess I’m going to have to go for a swim.
A spell flickered to life in Adrea’s hand.
Adrea (smugly): My old master never appreciated my creativity. “A heating spell will dry your clothes and keep you warm. Why would you ever want to take them off?”
Adrea: Because now they’ll never get wet in the first place, Master! Besides, alteration magic sucks and is useless. I either light my clothes on fire or lower the temperature so far that I’m more than a little uncomfortable.
Adrea: Who knew I’d be skinny dipping in an Ancient Nordic Tomb today? WHEE! I’d better try to find that cave system.
2 minutes later
Adrea: UGH! This is SO STUPID. It feels like I’ve been doing this FOREVER. I need a break.
15 minutes later
Adrea: GASP! COugh! couGH! Stupid, caves went on FOREVER! GASP. and I think I swallowed a fish. cOUGh! Nope. Just some seaweed. Gross.
Adrea: I can definitely walk through this next part, better not be buck naked for this next part. At least I can cover up the girls.
Adrea: Great, Draman Skeletons. They’ll guard your tomb while you rot away in peace. I never really understood why dead people wanted their remains guarded. It’s like you’re inviting challenge...Uh Oh, looks like they’ve noticed me.
Adrea: Typically, I’d have to conjure the water I need to take down my opponent, but being waist deep in a pool means I have all the power I’ll ever need.
Water swirls in a tsunami around Adrea.
Jets shoot out towards her foe
Adrea: Go back to sleep you Lizard, Skeleton, thing…
Adrea: You want some too? I’ll make you crack into a million pieces!
Adrea: Thought you could sneak up on me, huh?
Adrea: Put that sword down before you hurt yourself! You’re not getting anywhere close to hurt me with it.
After dispatching her foes, Adrea found dry land and summoned the rest of her clothes. But she faced a daunting hurdle.
Adrea: How am I going to get all the way up there?
Adrea: Alteration magic sucks, I hate doing it, I feel so weird after it, but it can’t be helped. I guess I’m going to have to use…
Adrea: Come on Adrea! Pull yourself up! What would Varina say if you couldn’t do a single Pull up?
Adrea (breathing heavily): Probably something like...How did you even survive this long? I’ve pulled up people twice my weight from double the distance...blah blah blah, have you seen my elven armor?... I HATE getting lectured.
Deeper in the Tomb
Adrea: Ok, so I’m right outside the burial chamber. Let’s see what I’m up against…
Adrea: Fire traps line the way up until the chest and the coffin.
Adrea: Uh-oh, Looks like Vahlok woke up already. Why don’t dead people stay dead?
Adrea: I should be fine if I just use an illusion spell or two. Muffling my footsteps should prevent the Jailor from noticing me. Maybe I should use feather-feet as well?
Adrea: Ok, both the spells are on and they’re working...let’s get to that chest.
Adrea: These spells are working out so well! I can’t even hear my own footsteps.
Adrea: So close now, I wonder what’s inside!
Adrea approaches the chest, she tries to lift it but the top won’t move.
Adrea: Is this chest enchanted?
Fire flies towards Adrea’s head, causing her hit the ground to avoid the incoming burns. The chest bursts into flames.
Adrea: What was that for?!?
Vahlok: Grave...Robber...This tomb...will hold…your ashes…
More fireballs flew at Adrea. She jumped to avoid them as they closed in.
Adrea vaulted over the coffin, and dove towards the pool in the middle of the burial chamber. As she was diving into the water: Adrea could make out a surprised look in the Lich’s ruined face.
Vahlok: Struggle...all you wish...Water...or...Fire...your death...is all the same…
Adrea emerged from in the far side of the pool. Water swirling around her.
Adrea: Listen here Mr. Cranky Lich. I’m not going to die today!
Vahlok channeled a powerful spell in his hand.
Vahlok: This tomb...shall be...your prison…
The waters swirled and intensified around Adrea.
Adrea: Too slow, Mr. Lich.
A huge Geyser shot up under Vahlok and blasted the lich into dust. The remaining form fell into the water, lifeless.
Adrea drug the remains onto land and examined them. There was nothing of value to be found.
She sat back on her heels. Drenched in water from shirt to boot, Adrea began to think about her previous Master’s words.
Adrea: You. Have. No. Loot. Mr. Lich. I’m dripping with water, You almost burned be to death. AND. YOU. HAVE. NO. LOOT?
A furious kick sent the remains of Vahlok into the pool.
Adrea: “Learn a heating spell, Adrea. It’s more useful than your stripper spell”...I hate it when my master is right. Now I’ve got to let this all air dry.
After making creative use of some dramen bones and a fire trap. Adrea left her clothes to dry and went to examine the word wall behind the coffin.
Adrea: My dragon speech is a little rusty, but I think this says…”Beware for here lies Vahlok the Jailor, Beware for he does not forgive trespassers. Any who desecrate this tomb will be beset upon by Dramen and will become their playthings? Their cries will herald Vahlok’s return?”
Adrea: Well that sounds a little bit ominous. Dramen are known for their violence, and also their lust. But I just reduced Vahlok to dust. I don’t think he’s coming back anytime soon.
Adrea: And the Dramen have been gone for centuries. All that remains of them are undead skeletons, the Blades made sure of that. Yeah, this inscription must just be more Ancient Nord Hyperbole. I’m out of here. This place gives me the creeps...It’s not the first time I’ve walked back to town naked.
Some Time Later
Hunts Palepwoon: Great and Powerful, Vahlok. I have returned your desecrated remains to their rightful place. Hear me and grant my wish!
Hunts Palepwoon: I wish for the power to take vengeance on my enemies and become an almighty Draman!.
Hunts began to change and grow and twist into a well muscled and scaled beast.
Vahlok: Go...my servant...bring...the grave robber…and her kin...to me...