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, March 26, 2006

Chapter 105: Concerning blood

"So, little fledgling... are you here to ask what you can do for your mother?" Dhaunayne Aundae stared at me, her vivid green-gold eyes unblinking.

"Actually," I replied, "I'm here to ask about what it is to be a vampire... I have many questions -"

"Then you will ask what you can do for your mother." The finely-dressed vampire repeated. "You are asking for guidance - for teaching; these are things I give my youngest children when they join the family. Simply being born into my blood, little monster, is not enough. Being part of my family means doing things for your mother."

There was a long pause, Dhaunayne apparently waiting for me to speak the words she wanted to hear. I studied her for a moment, thinking again how strange she looked: a vampire with striking eyes, dressed in such fine clothes and seated as if upon a throne, on a raised platform - only instead of a lavish throne room, there was nothing surrounding her but a barren, dark and empty tomb.

It did not seem as if I would receive a better opportunity to learn about my existence (nothing is free, I suppose), so:

"What can I do for you... mother?" I finally asked.

At that, Dhaunayne actually smiled, revealing a set of petite - but very sharp looking - fangs.

"Good. Now, as is often the case for our kind, it is a matter of blood. This regards my old family: my mortal family, from very long ago. When I was reborn, my... husband was killed by my sire, but my son - Vilandon - was not. I am curious to know what happened to the boy, though he has probably succumbed to the eventual failing all mortals share, by now." Dhaunayne's eyes had slowly closed as she spoke, but now they snapped open. "Still, it would amuse - and satisfy - me to know his fate."

I waited, remaining silent. If all she had for me was the name 'Vilandon', then I did not see how I could possibly find him. Fortunately, Dhaunayne was not yet finished:

"The last I heard of my old family placed them in the area that is now Sadrith Mora. Start your search there - and take this ring."

The Altmer vampire languidly tossed a finely-engraved silver ring to me.

"That -" she said, pointing to the ring that was now resting in my palm - "is my family crest. High elves have long memories. Show that to a high elf in Sadrith Mora: they should recognise it. Find out what they know, fledgling. Get information that is valuable to me. Go now."

Sure enough, the ring bore an intricate device of swirling patterns and miniscule dots. It meant nothing to me, but I could see how it would be unique.

"Very well -" I said, giving a slight bow and pocketing the ring - "and I should thank you in advance for what you shall teach me."

With that, I slipped my own ring onto my finger, and teleported home to Wolfen castle.


Finding Ashmelech - and then finding Dhaunayne Aundae - had taken quite some time. Hours had passed since my last 'meal', and I was again feeling cold and sluggish. I had intended to go hunting directly - but there, seated in front of the great hall's fireplace, was Sirilonwe.

She was alone, sitting in one of the chairs arrayed around the fire, but she was holding a goblet. It appeared that one of my staff had brought her a drink while she waited - for me.

"Sirilonwe!" I exclaimed. I had not spoken to her since the morning after my return - roughly two weeks earlier. We had exchanged glances on the occasions on which I had passed through the Vivec Mages Guild, but that was all.

"Edward..." she began, but did not move from her seat as I walked over to her; "I've been hearing a lot about what you've been doing... working with the Temple! I don't know how you managed it, but I guess it shows that you are determined to... stay with us, at least."

She did not have to clarify. By "us", I knew that she meant "mortals". There was an awkward pause - I was surprised to see her there, and did not quite know what to say. I was very happy to be speaking with her again, and did not want to scare her away (so to speak) by saying the wrong thing. Eventually, Sirilonwe broke the silence:

"I feel odd offering you a seat in your own castle, but -" She gestured that I should sit in the chair next to hers.

As I sat down, removing my heavy Netch-leather gloves and dropping them on the low table in front of the chairs, Sirilonwe made to place her goblet on the same table; and somehow, her hand brushed mine. There was a sharp intake of breath from Sirilonwe.

"You're freezing!" She exclaimed. "Or... is that just how you are, now - since..."

"I'm not always this cold." I said quietly. "I'll be alright once I've..." I faltered, seeing that Sirilonwe had blanched when she realised what I was going to say - but I finished anyway; "once I've fed."

Sirilonwe stared into the dull orange, dancing flames in the fireplace for a time, and neither of us spoke. I felt that despite my fervent wishes, I had indeed said the wrong thing. And then:

"Edward, I want you to stop hunting."

It felt like a shock through my limbs. Was she serious?

"Siri," I said slowly, "I would die - truly die. I would starve! I told you before: I feed without killing - without even wounding, in the end..."

She shook her head, a look of determination in her large, golden eyes.

"Think about how it must feel to the ones you hunt! Can you honestly say that every one of them does not think they are about to die, when you... No - you must stop. You can stop, because... you can have me."

I just stared at her, struck dumb. It seemed that I would just never, ever know what that woman would say next.

"You told me how you healed them - the ones you... drink from." Sirilonwe explained. "Well, you can heal me too: do the same thing. I can also heal myself, of course."

I found my voice, though it sounded hoarse to my ears:

"You trust me?" I had been afraid, in some ways, of being near her: afraid that I might hurt her. And now she was actually asking me to drink from her...

Sirilonwe shrugged.

"I trust that I won't be in serious danger."

I noticed several shimmering rings on her fingers - obviously enchanted. I suspected that at least one of them held power much like that of an Almsivi or Divine Intervention spell - allowing her to teleport away almost instantly, should she want to.

Sirilonwe remained seated in the old wooden chair, but indicated that I should kneel before her. She held out her wrist.

"Be careful." She said, a light tremor in her voice.

She grunted when I bit into her wrist, her whole body becoming rigidly tense. Very slowly, she began to relax. As I drank, I felt Sirilonwe's hand on the back of my head, her fingers twisting my hair into a strong grip. Ready to pull me off, I suppose... But she did not. I reached up to place my hands on her waist, sending the healing magic into her.

When I was finished, I released her wrist, and watched the wounds close up under the ministration of my healing spell. I felt a pull on the back of my head. Sirilonwe, still grasping a handful of my hair, pulled my head back so that I was looking up at her. There was a strange expression on her face.

"Carry me to your bed." She instructed. "I'm feeling a little faint."


She kissed me as I carried her up the stairwell, careful to avoid my somewhat obtrusive fangs. For my part, I think I was in something of a euphoria after feeding, and not really thinking clearly. I was more-or-less just doing as Sirilonwe said.

I set her down on my bed, and she sat on the edge, slowly undoing the straps on my armour; letting the individual pieces fall to the matted floor with a dull clunk. It took much less time to undress her.

"Alright," she said, taking me by the wrists and pulling me closer, "... be careful with those teeth..."

30 Comments:

Blogger Joseph said...

On the topic of Scourge's head (in the comments section of the previous chapter), I think it's an in-joke for the developers, and the story goes something like this:

One of the devs used to test the game while it was in production using an Argonian character named Scourge. Another dev made the Lizard's Head club, and put in the mounted Argonian head - coincidentally the same head model that the other dev used for Scourge. So they called it Scourge's head, and hilarity ensued.

(I think that's what I read somewhere, anyway).

- Joseph.

Sunday, March 26, 2006 12:54:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

Thanks Joseph, that head has always puzzled me. Never figured out what it does. Would I be wrong saying it has no other use than to be ornamental?

'Mother'... (shudder) That's going to take some getting used to.

Ah, so Edward has found his first thrall... Even if he doesn;t know it yet :)

Morrowind Trivia - Where is the Jewel Stash on Solstheim?

Sunday, March 26, 2006 3:02:00 pm  
Anonymous Ray a.k.a. lorddnomyar said...

Joseph: Ah, the plot thickens, as well as the blood flow! This chapter was rather good, but it leaves me wanting to know about the Aundae woman's son.
I've never been a vampire, because I'm no good with the shunning aspects. I had a friend who did though, and he was amazingly tough. For being dead and all.

Sunday, March 26, 2006 8:30:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the vampire quests really connect on how lonely a morrowind vampire really is.

Sunday, March 26, 2006 8:58:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

I only ever played as a Vampire once, and that was only for a short time. I hated being screamed at and shunned. What I REALLY hated most of all about the shunning was the refusal of services, mainly travel. It was most annoying, walking/running everywhere. Took absolutely forever to do anything. But the Increased stats where great. Helped a lot with the Artifact hunting.

Sunday, March 26, 2006 9:33:00 pm  
Anonymous Stygian said...

She did not have to clarify. By "us", I knew that she meant "mortals". There was an awkward pause - I was surprised to see her there, and did not quite now what to say. I was very happy to be speaking with her again, and did not want to scare her away (so to speak) by saying the wrong thing. Eventually, Sirilonwe broke the silence:

Monday, March 27, 2006 12:25:00 am  
Anonymous Stygian said...

Great chapter, by the way.

Monday, March 27, 2006 12:32:00 am  
Anonymous David said...

Joseph, I've been reading your exceptional work for some time now. I can't tell you how much I enjoy reading. But this is definitely a genious stroke! I had a feeling you were going to have to go this way, and I'm glad you did so with such an excellent transition. You rock! Keep it up!

Monday, March 27, 2006 9:45:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info on The Head Of Scourge.. As for the Jewels I can give some hints.. In Deep waters murder most fowl,, Widows vengenus husbuns lost,, Guilty stands at woodlands edge,, Feed to boars this beasts I ride,, Diamounds arrows treaurs beared,, Atenic "old" helm this prinece of snow!! Sorry I just can't spell!!

Monday, March 27, 2006 1:09:00 pm  
Anonymous Random said...

Would'nt she become infected with Poryphric Hemophillia?

Monday, March 27, 2006 2:32:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

Not Necessarily. The disease is transferred by blood remember? And I don't think Sirilonwe would be drinking Edwards blood. At least I think not...?

Monday, March 27, 2006 3:43:00 pm  
Blogger Joseph said...

Person: Yes, I'm pretty sure it's just ornamental.

Ray: If you use the Vampire Embrace mod (which I've been linking to), your vampire character can talk to other characters if there disposition value is high enough. (It's a little more difficult to raise their disposition as a vampire, but it's better than not being able to talk to anyone.

You do still get people screaming at you, though. :-)

Stygian: Thanks - I've fixed it.

David: Thankyou! And a genius stroke, was it? I'll have to remember that - that's pretty good. :-) And the transition you're talking about is the change to being a vampire, right?

Random and Person: If she did somehow catch it that way, it would be very easy to have it cured. Frost could do it in an instant with a spell.

- Joseph.

Monday, March 27, 2006 5:00:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You should build a website about yourself, or even a blog.

The picture doesn't show you that well. Do you by any chance have another one?

Monday, March 27, 2006 7:49:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

Joseph: Obviously. I thought that was a given that Frost or Sirilonwe could do that.

Morrowind Trivia - Where is the Jewel Stash on Solstheim?

Morrowind Trivia -
Who is Koffuto Gilgar?

Tuesday, March 28, 2006 8:30:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Person: The jewel stash is underneath some muck above the barrow where you help the young skaal warrior to kill a draugr.

Joseph: Really good chapter,I've always loved talking to people with Vampie Embrace.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006 8:43:00 am  
Anonymous Person said...

Well... That wasn't the one I was thinking of but... Correct!

Morrowind Trivia - Who is Koffuto Gilgar?

Tuesday, March 28, 2006 9:28:00 am  
Anonymous DeusXMachina said...

Hi Joseph,

I really, really love your frosty story. I had a break from following the episodes for some weeks and was surprised when I saw the new header first, but the progress of the plot is quite amazing. Sooner or later, your Edward will become a serious competitor to AlienSlof's Bastard Basil :)

Tuesday, March 28, 2006 10:14:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Person: Oh,yeah.The other treasure is in a barrow on a small island off the coast of Solstheim(sp).It has a level 100 lock so you have to have the key that you get after completing a quest,the cheats,or a really high security skill.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 4:33:00 am  
Anonymous Stygian said...

Once was: Edward Frost, A Morrowind Story!

Now is: Edward Frost, Erotic Sex Tale!

Sorry... I've been wanting to say that since the day I read the chapter...


>_<

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 10:05:00 am  
Anonymous Person said...

Anonymous: Well, no, it wasn't that one either...

Stygian: If it was an erotic sex tale don't you think it would be a bit more detailed?

Morrowind Trivia - Who is Koffuto Gilgar?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 12:11:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Person: Okay,is it the sealed chest at the bottom of the river?If it's not then maybe it's the one in the hollow treestump behind Thirsk?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 12:31:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

No, neither of those... BTW where is the chest at the bottom of the river?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 12:59:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Person: In answer to your question it's a sealed wooden chest at the end of one of the two forks in one of the rivers,I can't remember which one.:)It is at the bottom so it will require some swimming to get to it.Anyway,I have no idea what treasure you are talking about,and I have no idea who Koffuto Gilar is.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 3:03:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

Thanks. I'll go looking for it.

The Treasure I was thinking about is located in a cave, just ten metres or so West of The Earth Stone. There is a long passageway in the cave that ends in a pool of water, and beyond the water is an open room. Near the back wall there is an arrow on the wall, made of Diamonds pointing at a hollow rock, which has the gems inside it.

Morrowind Trivia - Who is Koffuto Gilgar?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 4:13:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

Sorry about the mistake, it's actually west of the Tree Stone.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 4:29:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Person: Ah,okay.I've had a temporary slack in addiction since I got Oblivion but I'll start up again soon.

Morrowind Trivia: Where is the Abandoned Shack?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 4:31:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

West North-west of Gnaar Mok. And, incidentally my favourite poem is inside the shack. My absolute favourite!!!

Morrowind Trivia - Who is Koffuto Gilgar?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 5:54:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

Okay... I'll give you a hint. Koffuto is an Orc. But what's special about him? Hmmm? Any takers?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 8:51:00 pm  
Anonymous DaBigPman said...

Person: Is that the Orc that builds the statue of bohemia?

Joseph: Keep the good story rollin old buddy

Thursday, March 30, 2006 2:32:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Person: I love that poem too...

-Noozooroo

Sunday, April 02, 2006 9:44:00 am  

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