Frost in Morrowind

Edward Frost's time in Morrowind has come to an end; but his struggles are recorded here for any to read. A year in the making, and spanning one hundred and fifty chapters… Violence, suspicion, loss, betrayal, revenge, power with a price, a fight for survival, ages-old mysteries... all thrust in the way of Edward Frost, a man simply trying to rebuild his life.

Chapter 1 can be found here.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Chapter 83: Revelation

"As you know, the Emperor himself ordered that you be released from prison and sent here, to me."

Caius tapped the sheet of paper he had just given me. I was holding it up, as if to read it, but at that moment I could not take my eyes off the old spymaster.

"That is a decoded copy of the message you delivered to me when we first met." Caius leaned up against the rear wall of his single-room shack. "I must say, I had a hard time taking it completely seriously when I first read it... but, it says that the Emperor and his advisors believe that you have the appearance of meeting the conditions of the Nerevarine prophecies."

I blinked. I heard his words - clearly. But their significance did not quite penetrate.

"What?" I glanced down at the words on the document I held. "What do you mean?" I looked back at Caius.

The old Imperial motioned that I should keep reading the document.

"As you'll see in the decoded message, Emperor Septim believes you have the appearance of satisfying the conditions of the prophecy. I can't say that I know whether he really believes that you could be the Nerevarine..." Caius looked bemused.

"The Nerevarine?" I exclaimed, feeling much more than bemused. "You think that I'm the Nerevarine? How in the world..."

The spymaster raised his hands, in a placating gesture.

"Personally I don't know what to think." He replied. "It wouldn't be the first time a prophecy has come true... and of course no-one ever believes that they themselves could be the central figure in a prophecy of ... historical proportions. Who's to say? You are 'born on a certain day to uncertain parents', after all..."

That much was true. I actually knew the exact date of my birth; even though I had been left anonymously on the steps of the Imperial Cult orphanage as a newborn baby. From a relatively early age, my impressive magical ability - coupled with a susceptibility to fall foul of the harmful effects of my own amateur spell-weaving attempts - made it apparent that I had been born under the celestial sign of 'The Apprentice'. Those born under this sign were known to feel the flows of magicka more keenly through their bodies: for better and for worse. It gave people like me greater stores of magicka, but it also meant that we were more susceptible to harmful magic.

I sometimes wondered whether being born under the sign of The Apprentice had somehow contributed to - or even caused - the violent effect the moon emblem had had on me. Perhaps a 'normal' person would not have ended up like me: dying from an internal magicka leak.

In any case, to return to my original point, the Imperial Cult Priests had looked up their calendars upon surmising that I had been born under the sign of The Apprentice, and somehow calculated that there was only one possible day on which I could have been born. (Apparently they had been fairly sure of my birth-date already, since when they found me, it was obvious I could not have been out of the womb for more than a day or so).

Caius was still speaking:

"My original understanding of my orders was that we were supposed to create - in you - a persuasive impostor. Such an important figure as the Nerevarine, under our control... I'm sure you can understand the appeal of such a thing to the Imperial government." The spymaster rubbed his eyes fitfully. "But as I said - who am I to dismiss the possibility that you really could be the..."

"But the details of the prophecy are so ridiculous!" I interrupted. "If I was the Nerevarine, you could expect me to drive the 'outlanders' from Morrowind. Every last one - and the Empire! The Imperial Legion! You'll pardon me for saying so, Caius, but it sounds just a little far-fetched."

Caius gazed at me levelly.

"Perhaps if there is - or will be - a Nerevarine," Caius said, "he will not do everything exactly as it is laid out in the prophecy we've heard..."

I shook my head, and rubbed my temples. I could feel a headache coming on.

"Could someone like that still be said to meet the conditions of a prophecy, though?" I asked.

"I should think, Frost, that the varying accounts you've heard of the history of the Nerevarine cult would have told you something: the exact truth - of anything - can be lost over time. It could be that the original prophecy did not state that the Nerevarine will drive the 'outlanders' from Morrowind."

This made me think. One of the accounts of the prophecy I had heard did not in fact say that the Nerevarine would drive all foreigners from Morrowind: it merely said that he would 'honour the promises Indoril Nerevar made to the Ashlander people'. In that account, these promises were open to interpretation.

My mind was in turmoil. I could not really make myself believe that I could be the reincarnation of an ancient Dunmer General - a hero of prophecy. It was just too unreal. Caius had a point when he said that we couldn't really know for sure - one way or the other. I, of course, was leaning towards the opinion that the idea was ludicrous.

"In any case, Frost, I'm going to send you to talk to the leaders of the cult, now that we know who they are. Ask them to test you against the prophecies. I'll give you another two hundred drakes for expenses - though I'm sure you hardly need it with the kind of money you have now." He added with a grin. "You said you know where the Urshilaku camp is, correct? Now..."

"Wait, wait!" I exclaimed, head in my hands. "This is insane! The Nerevarine is obviously a figure of huge importance to these people. People to whom honour is a 'matter of life and death', apparently. How do you think they will react to a pale Breton arriving at their doorstep, claiming to be their reincarnated hero?"

Caius, looking exasperated, opened his mouth to interject, but I continued:

"I cannot go right now anyway. I made a promise to search for some missing people in the north of Solstheim. They could be in a lot of trouble if I don't go straight away."

The spymaster raised his eyebrows. He was actually starting to look a little concerned.

"Solstheim!" He pushed away from the wall, to stand up straight. "Listen Edward, while this business with the Urshilaku is not absolutely urgent, I can't say that we have all the time in the world. And Solstheim! Do you know what you're getting yourself into? If you think the Ashlands are bad..."

I shook my head, making for the door.

"I'm sorry, Caius. I... need some time to think about this. I'll come see you again when I return from Solstheim."

He called out to me, but I pushed through the door and out into the streets; leaving him behind.

11 Comments:

Anonymous Matar said...

Solstheim! Solstheim! Solstheim! Solstheim! Solstheim! Solstheim! Solstheim! Solstheim! Solstheim!

Oh and I remind people of a monky king.

Just putting that out there.

Friday, February 03, 2006 6:24:00 pm  
Anonymous dabigpman said...

well great argument there joe......i cant wait to see frosty's interpretation of the frozen wonderland. i hope he gets that kool snow bear armour.

Saturday, February 04, 2006 2:16:00 am  
Anonymous person said...

Solstheim... I LOVE Solstheim. Except for the Reikling Raiders... (shudder)

First time I saw one I thought to myself "Dear God this is gonna hurt..."

Needless to say, the Tusked Bristlebacks and their riders did'nt go hungry for a while...

Saturday, February 04, 2006 2:54:00 am  
Anonymous dabigpman said...

i had to do this......
frosty the snowman
was a jolly happy soul.
with a corncob pipe and a button nose and two eyes made outta coooooaaaaaaallllllll!!!!!

Saturday, February 04, 2006 7:29:00 am  
Blogger Nyxalinth said...

This is getting better all the time. I made an account here just so I could comment. :) I keep my own writing on livejournal, though.

Yours is the best 'Main Quest Story' I have read so far. I'm curious, though: did you have all this written up ahead of time and you release it every three days, or do you write a chapter every 1-2 days?

Saturday, February 04, 2006 7:30:00 am  
Anonymous Stygian said...

You don't have to be a member to make comments...

See all us people with our 'Names' in black? We're not members.

Saturday, February 04, 2006 8:54:00 am  
Blogger Joseph said...

Thanks everyone.

Dabigpman: :-) That would never have occurred to me.

Nyxalinth: Thankyou! I generally write a chapter every 1-2 days, trying to keep a few chapters ahead.

- Joseph.

Saturday, February 04, 2006 11:38:00 am  
Blogger Star said...

Joseph,
My love of your story has led me to read Arvil Bren. I assume that you take inspiration from Tim's writings. I've actually thought about writing my own Morrowind fanfic. What advice would you give me to help me get started if I choose to do so? Another question, will you be using Emma's Whitewolf mod for Edward or is that a mod for another character?

Saturday, February 04, 2006 3:55:00 pm  
Blogger Joseph said...

Star: I often feel inspired when I read Tim's story, but I do not actually take inspiration from the story itself, if that makes sense.

The White Wolf of Lokken mod was originally planned to be included in Frost in Morrowind (way back in its early stages), but I decided a while ago not to include it, as it would cause the story to deviate a little too far from the central plot.

You're not the first to ask advice here, so this is for anyone who wants writing advice.

First, keep in mind that I have never studied or been taught (fiction) writing - I am not a professional. I am also only 24, and so don't have heaps of experience. So take my advice for what it's worth.

- Having some idea of what you want to accomplish - before you start - is good.

- One thing I found myself telling ... myself in the early stages of writing this story was: Try to avoid cliched turns of phrase (and inappropriate slang outside of dialogue). It sounds stale and amateurish. For example: "I rose at the crack of dawn, kicking off the covers, before thundering down the stairs to shovel down a hearty breakfast." is awfully cliched.

- On a related note, don't try to mimic other writing styles. Just set up a scene with set things you want to happen/points you want to get across, then think about what might realistically happen in that scene, considering the character/s and conditions present. Finally, just describe (in plain language - at least until you become more confident in your writing) what happens in that scene, based on what you thought up.

- An obvious one, but be consistent with your perspective and tense. This doesn't mean that you must stick to an omniscient, past-tense point-of-view (for example) for the entire story, just that it should be consistent.

- Almost too obvious to mention, but: you need correct spelling and grammar. Without this, no-one will take your writing seriously, and many will be turned off completely.

- Don't be afraid to start a new paragraph.

- When writing a period or fantasy-piece (like Morrowind fan-fiction), you have to keep an eye on the language you use. Be careful not to use language (slang, for example) that is inappropriate to the period/setting. "I laid the smack-down on the Dremora Lord" is probably inappropriate.


Hmmm... If I think of more later, I'll post them.

- Joseph.

Saturday, February 04, 2006 9:04:00 pm  
Anonymous Stygian said...

- Almost too obvious to mention, but: you need correct spelling and grammar. Without this, no-one will take your writing seriously, and many will be turned off completely.


>_>

*cough*

I am guilty of grammar/spelling whoring... As Joseph has already seen....

- When writing a period or fantasy-piece (like Morrowind fan-fiction), you have to keep an eye on the language you use. Be careful not to use language (slang, for example) that is inappropriate to the period/setting. "I laid the smack-down on the Dremora Lord" is probably inappropriate.

That made me laugh.

Sunday, February 05, 2006 8:49:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Frosty seems a little harh at times.




Great stories!!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007 11:45:00 am  

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