Volume 4 – Firemane Clan
Chapter #96 – Ill Met By Moonlight (1)
Cleaning the courtyard of ‘Cracked Tusk Keep’ was done pretty quickly! The keep fort itself was locked from the inside.
I will deal with it somehow but I had to make sure no one is alive around.
Jull confirmed that most of the bandits escaped the place but Sinding was still around in the woods. I am waiting for him to make his move.
Meanwhile, I started going with the rest of the preparations.
There was some stuff notable in the courtyard like some Orcish armors and a lot of weapons that will sell for a good price. The Orcs are known for their smithing work so I guess the price will be good.
I wanted to take these weapons with me to Winterhold to lessen Wulfur’s workload but it will be impossible as I don’t have the liberty to travel this slow.
My business in Falkreath will take a few more days at most so I need to finish up quickly.
Having these thoughts in my head, I started looking around the yard and found something good. Some horses in a stable and two carts.
Now I can loot the whole damn fort if I wanted to.
I conjured ten bonemen to do the work for me. Bonemen can put down their bows and arrows then do whatever I tell them to do, I could have reanimated some dead corpses to do the work for me but I hate that kind of Necromancy, not as if I am some saint or anything, it is just about corpses, they smell bad.
The bonemen started moving the carts and carried all the items I want to loot in them, I was tying the horses to the carts as it was a bit complicated for the undead to do.
Just as I made sure the place was cleaned, I headed to the fort.
‘Scan’ spell showed me that there are some people fortified in there and are on alert. Their number was around twenty.
“No problem! Outnumbering me is a foolish move anyway.”
I called back the wrathmen that were left out and they were around the same number.
“Sheath your weapons! Carry that large log over there! Bring down that gate!”
The best point of the undead is their absolute obedience. I love those cute bone walkers for a reason.
They did as I ordered and brought the large log.
I can easily break the gate with a strong magic but I wanted to make it feel like some sort of siege scene. All in all, it was just me screwing around.
The knocks on the gate with this primitive ram sounded high and the movements inside intensified, the ones inside probably are preparing for an emotional last stand.
In a minute, the gate was forced open but the people inside were trying to block the door with all the stuff they have, chairs, tables, chests, you name it.
I increased the number of the wrathmen then called them way. After that, I went to the blocked gate and placed a magical rune spell on it. It was a ‘Fire Rune’ but not the typical one. This one was a bit too intense so I added a few more.
Going back behind my undead, I evoked a simple ‘Fire Bolt’ then…
“Aaah! I am going to get high on this!”
Maybe I am just a psychopathic Pyromancer (Fire Mage) but I think this has something to do with my ‘Firemane’ blood lineage. I am starting to use Fire Magic more than my favorite Lightning Magic lately.
Will I become an arsonist? I know that Jonrad Firemane, who is my father, is a powerful Pyromancer and a Dragon Knight at that. Can it be that I am getting some passed down genes from an arsonist?
Somehow I am straying from the main topic a lot lately. The gate was already clear.
“Go in there, kill whoever you see.”
I passed down the order to the undead around me and they took action. It feels so damn good to control that much troops. I don’t want to join a war or anything but this smalls battles actually give some sense of pride to the victor.
Anyway, screams and wails for mercy sounded from the fort. There Orcs are actually bandits! Why am I being treated like the bad guy?
I went to check the situation in and it seemed it was done pretty quickly.
“You spread this direction! You the other direction! You follow me!”
I started searching around the fort for valuables and got some good loot. I started distributing it into some empty containers and commanded the undead to take them out.
After I finished the upper part of the fort, I went down and found a kitchen with nothing interesting in it. I passed the kitchen to another room small corridor behind it that led me to the back door of the fort, there are also some stairs that led to the basement, or rather the vault.
“Hehe! I knew it is here but I didn’t find the key.”
In front of me was a passage blocked with strong steel bars. I saw that mechanism before in ‘Hob’s Fall Cave’. It needs some lever for activation.
I knew where it was too. Just on my right, there was a hole in the wall sealed with a metal plate that had a lock on it.
Sigh! Time to remember Delvin’s old lock-picking lessons.
I took out a small knife and a lock-pick from my small bag and started the annoying work.
The lock was hard but using ‘Scan’ spell was cheating itself so it didn’t take me long.
Just as the lock was picked, the metal plate was now moveable and the lever behind it appeared. Moving it made the steel bars that blocked the path move away.
“Hehe! Now it’s your turn guys.” I said as I looked at the undead behind me. If these guys were alive and knew what I was about to do they would have cursed at me with all their vigor.
From my past life knowledge and my ‘Scan’, I realized that the walking ahead like this is only a corridor to hell. The amount of traps ahead from now on is terrifying.[A/N: A terrifying amount of traps? Sigh! I wish.]
Now my plan was simple, rather than going around all these traps while jumping up and down like a dork, why not make our dear undead clear up the traps themselves.
On my command, the undead went into the corridor and from it to the vault chamber like a stream of water. All sorts of traps went on. Poison darts, spikes, tripwires, alchemy bombs, false floor.
Damn! There are some I didn’t even spot before.
As I discovered that, I added more undead to the fray.
It continued for a minute until all the traps went off and I sensed that the room was safe. What was left was three undead.
“Sorry guys! That may leave a trauma for sure.”
I had to apologize though.
Anyway, I walked to the innermost part of the chamber as I recall that the item I am after was there.
“Indeed it is here!”
I saw it! I saw it on an alter.
What I mean by it were some scraps of metal that looked rather ancient.
These were the [Shards of Mehrunes’ Razor].
What is that you ask?
Well, it is another Daedric Artifact I am after.
‘Mehrunes’ Razor’, also called ‘the Dagger of the Final Wounds’, ‘the Bane of the Righteous’ and ‘the Kingslayer’, is a Daedric artifact created by the Daedric Prince Mehrunes Dagon. This powerful ebony dagger has the ability to kill instantly, as there is a small chance that Dagon will claim the souls of those struck by the Razor. It is Daedric in appearance, emblazoned with a Daedric script and seemingly able to drink the light that hits it.
The Razor is Mehrunes Dagon’s personal artifact. It has always heralded bloody change and carnage.
Speaking of Mehrunes Dagon, he is formally known as, ‘the Exalted and Most Puissant Lord’, ‘Gerent of Dagon’, ‘Mehrunes’, also ‘Mehrunes the Razor’, ‘Mehrunes the Thieftaker’, ‘Mehrunes Godsbody’ and ‘Mehrunes the Red Arms That Went Up’, is the Daedric Prince of Destruction, Change, Revolution, Energy, and Ambition. He is associated with natural dangers like fire, earthquakes, and floods.
And now I have the shards of a weapon that is favored by such a Daedric Prince.
The shards were only the blade of the razor. With this in hand, three items left to bring that terrible weapon back to life.
Even though the dagger has the ability to kill instantly, it is only a tiny chance like 2%, but the weapon itself is fairly powerful.
Now, let’s collect that thing and leave. I still have more important matters to attend to.
Just as I got out, I banished the undead after they loaded the two carts with all sorts of loot I found in there.
I wasn’t ready to move yet as I still have the matter about the ring, I hope Sinding is not a coward and ran away long ago.
Just as I left the fort, I looked around and saw the figure of Jullanar waving for me. I approached her and she came from her hiding spot.
“He came and took it.”
“Did he put it on?”
“Yes! The moment he did, he started turning into a werewolf. Did you know this would happen?”
“Kinda. He seemed desperate to me! Where is he now?”
“Over there, he seemed a bit in a daze after he turned again.”
Of course, he should be! He took the ring to control his transformation but instead he transformed once he took it.
I followed the trail of tracks to the woods nearby and found a werewolf hitting the trunk of a tree.
“Give it back.” I said.
“Huh?” He turned around to look for me, he was angry but he could do nothing.
“Go away!” He picked a stone from the ground and threw it at me. His voice was a bit funny in that wolf form of his.
“Give it back or else.” I warned once again.
“GAAAH!” Sinding lost his temper and attacked me.
Fast! Powerful! But still not enough.
Swing after swing, charge after charge, he already was losing his stamina too fast. This meant he will turn human soon.
He tried to attack me with everything he got but I evaded and jumped behind him and gave him a hug from the back.
“Nothing romantic here! Just endure this if you can.”
I carried Sinding and took him down by a suplex.
“Not human yet! I guess we will keep going.”
I took him another suplex, then another one, then another one. Every time he fell he was groaning from pain.[A/N: Suplex City is Skyrim.]
After seven suplexes, Sinding was too tired to continue and changed into human slowly.
I took my saber and pointed it to his neck.
“The Ring!” I said with cold eyes.
Sinding was huffing for breath and squirming from pain. He looked at me with eyes full of hate.
“Take it!” He threw the ring at my face. “May it bring upon you a thousand curse!”
“Thanks! Let’s go!”
I took the ring and left just like that, but before I leave, I left a ‘Pinpoint’ mark on him. With this, I can always know his whereabouts as long as he is within five miles of me.
I walked back to the fort and took the carts then headed to Falkreath.
I still have things to do.