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.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Chapter 84: Delays

With my warmest robe bundled into my pack, along with a supply of food suitable for travel, I set out in the early morning for Solstheim. Even reaching the shore of the frigid island would take most of the day. It was truly a remote place. Khuul, on the north-western coast of Vvardenfell, was the closest settlement to the Imperial Legion's Frostmoth Fort on the south coast of Solstheim; and I had heard that one could take a boat from Khuul - so that was my destination.

My plan was to ask Folms to teleport me to the Berandas Velothi stronghold, just south of Gnisis. From Gnisis I could take a silt strider to the fishing village of Khuul. As was becoming usual, I scouted the stronghold for Folms first, before carrying on my way.

Berandas was in a severe state of disrepair - compared to the other Velothi strongholds I had seen. Many of its twisting underground passages had collapsed, long ago giving in to the pressure of the soil and stone above. The place was also home to some... less than benevolent creatures. This was made plain by the pair of skeletal corpses (of man or mer) propped up unceremoniously on wooden stakes, just inside the stronghold entrance.

I soon discovered the culprits: goblins! Squat, muscular, green-skinned and warlike creatures. Fortunately for me, the band I met was a ragged bunch of individuals that had taken shelter in the ruined structure, and did not pose much of a threat. Every one of them flew at me, and every one fell to a couple of solid strokes of my heavy longsword.

As I mentioned, much of Berandas was closed off by collapsed passageways and chambers - and I soon found the probable reason for this: the stronghold was built on a place of heavy volcanic activity. In one of the lower rooms, part of the wall and floor had fallen away to reveal a tunnel burnt out of the solid ground by flows of molten rock. Mindful of my pressing engagement on Solstheim, and having no idea how deep the lava-tunnels went, I jogged down the tunnel to quickly assess the situation. If the tunnels carried on too far, I would leave them for another time.

The tunnels actually came to an end quite soon; terminating in a massive organic chamber, lit red by pools of fitfully-bubbling lava. At the far side of the cavern I could make out a pair of large Winged Twilights, who appeared to be bent low over a dead body; as if smelling it. With each deep inhalation, their wings shivered slightly.

Rapping my shield against the cave wall to gain their attention and draw them away from the body, I proceeded to smother the Daedric creatures with magical ice and poison, using my area-effect spells. One of the creatures fell before it could reach me, and the other was seriously wounded; one of its wings seared right off by the acidic poison. It dealt me a nasty kick to the stomach, half-winding me, but I was in no real danger as I dispatched it.

The only thing I could really tell about the corpse that had so distracted the Winged Twilights was that it had once belonged to a Redguard. He appeared to have been dead for several days, but carried nothing that provided any indication as to who he might have been. He was wearing an interesting pair of leather boots, though, that fairly pulsed with powerful levitation magic. Boots that were enchanted to allow the wearer to fly about at will.

It was powerful magic, but I left the boots where they were. I had my own levitation magic, and I was not in the mood to disrespect the dead.

Across the River Samsi, in Gnisis, I sat on the silt strider platform for nearly an hour before one of the giant insects showed up. Needless to say, perhaps, I was becoming quite peeved. I had almost set out on foot on numerous occasions, only to decide to wait "just a few more minutes".

It was mid-afternoon when I stepped off the strider at Khuul, feeling anxious at the delays. If Louis Beauchamp's crew were really stranded somewhere in Solstheim's uninhabited, blizzard-plagued north, time was at a premium.

For a small handful of drakes, I persuaded a Khajiiti fisherman to ferry me across the rough stretch of sea to Solstheim in his boat. The trip took hours: much longer than I would have thought. I don't know much about sea travel, but I think it was because we were 'tacking' against the icy wind for much of the voyage.

The last two hours on the boat were in darkness, the sun having set behind a veil of grey mist during the trip. In the dark, we were assaulted by a numbing cold the likes of which I had never felt before. The Khajiiti fisherman had his thick fur, plus some very warm-looking clothes - but all I had was my armour and the 'warm' robe I had brought. Usually, wearing a full suit of armour is an exercise in sweating and overheating: I had thought I would be warm enough - but even with the robe I was shivering violently. I put both Denstagmer's Ring and my Elementward ring on (both protect against extreme elements), and felt a little better - but the temperature continued to drop.

"Gods, it's cold!" I exclaimed to no-one in particular as I disembarked from the boat. The Argonian securing the fishing vessel to the stone dock gave me a withering look. I suspect he felt the cold much more than I, being cold-blooded. Solstheim would be a truly miserable place for one of the lizard-folk.

I watched the (bare-footed!) Argonian exchange a few words with the Khajiiti fisherman. He slowly hopped from one scaly foot to the other as he spoke, pressing the raised foot against his leg in a (probably vain) attempt to keep it warm. I could see why he did it, too: the dock was slick with ice from the drifting sea-mist.

My breath emerged in great plumes of steam, and I was shivering again. The Denstagmer and Elementward rings took the bite out of the cold, but I could still feel a creeping numbness in my extremities. And this was the 'warmest' place on the island! I knew from talking to the Khajiiti fisherman that Solstheim only got colder the further north one went. I needed warmer clothes - ideally something that would provide some physical protection at the same time. Fur armour: that was what I needed. Such armour was difficult to come by in a warm place like Vvardenfell - or at least I had not seen much of it in the armouries I had visited.

The Imperial Legion's outpost on Solstheim, Fort Frostmoth, was just up a short slope from the dock. The forbidding stone structure was only illuminated by the dim moonlight that filtered through the thin cover of clouds: it was closed and shuttered against the cold of the night. I would return in the morning and seek out their armoury: surely an outpost in a place like that would have supplies of warm armour?

I breathed in deep as I looked about for an out-of-the-way place to cast my magical Mark. The air there on Solstheim made me realise just how stale and suffocating the atmosphere is on most of Vvardenfell, with its lack of trees and hot, dusty winds. I could not see them in the blackness, but I caught the invigorating scent of pine trees on the breeze. The air was fresh - and quite bracing, of course.

Having found a spot down beside the dock, a few strides up from the shore, I cast Mark, and then used the Wolfen ring to return home for the night. The search for the airship crew would have to wait until the morning - and until I was better equipped.


Anonymous Person said...

Joseph, you nearly made me cry like a child at those words:
He was wearing an interesting pair of leather boots, though, that fairly pulsed with powerful levitation magic. Boots that were enchanted to allow the wearer to fly about at will.

It was powerful magic, but I left the boots where they were. I had my own levitation magic, and I was not in the mood to disrespect the dead.
Although I understand the reason why you left them, for the sake of continuence of Frost's character and mentality, still...

You left Talos' Boots?

Great chapter as always!

Sunday, February 05, 2006 7:14:00 pm  
Anonymous Matar said...

You left boots on a dead body?

ou have more respect for dead NPC then I do.

... Time to go piss on there body's bye.

Sunday, February 05, 2006 7:20:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

BTW Talos' Boots are the Boots of the Apostle. If you dont know, Talos was Tiber Septims Name Before he became Emperor of Tamriel. He supposedly got the boots from The Greybeards who lived on a different continent North of Tamriel.

He was able to withstand their thu'um, or yell as most atmoran Nords have one. The Greybeards were Nords with such a powerful Thu'um they had to isolate themselves to prevent accidentally kill people with their massive power.

He left with the secrets of the Greybeards, riding the clouds down from the Mountains using the Boots of the Apostle. After Talos/Tiber died the boots vanished.

I'll stop talking/writing now.
Tune in next week for more fantastic morrowind history lessons!

Sunday, February 05, 2006 8:20:00 pm  
Anonymous dagothjake said...


Well, I guess that was a more "Frosty" thing to do...

anyway, another wonderful chapter! keep up the great work!


Monday, February 06, 2006 8:14:00 am  
Anonymous Matar said...

What time is it now kids?!

Bother Joseph time!?

THat right bother Joseph time!

Will you use Lilarcor?

:P I coudn't resist.

Monday, February 06, 2006 6:56:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You guys are suck geeks.

I bet you would take that as a compliment as well :P

Wednesday, February 08, 2006 4:09:00 am  
Anonymous dabigpman said...

wow!! thats the nicest thing anyone has ever said to matar......if he could read that right now he would be smiling. im sure of it!!! XD XD XD

Wednesday, February 08, 2006 7:26:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

besides at elderscrolls.gamespy where is a place where i could download MTT III?

Wednesday, February 08, 2006 8:31:00 am  
Blogger Joseph said...

I had a quick look at a site that I remember had a non-'elderscrolls.gamespy' download link, but it has since changed to point at 'elderscrolls.gamespy'.

No luck there, sorry. I can tell you from personal experience that the download links at 'elderscrolls.gamespy' do work, so I'd recommend trying there again (and reading relevant FAQs if you have problems).

- Joseph.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006 10:27:00 pm  
Blogger Joseph Kennedy said...

Oh dear. not only did you leave one of the more powerful artefacts, you also missed the poor Breton woman stuck high up in the ceiling
that's why the boots are where they are.
So you can get to her

Wednesday, May 07, 2008 12:25:00 am  

Post a Comment

<< Home