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, May 05, 2006

Chapter 122: Dead or dying

Tired though she was after her long vigil outside Ilunibi (and from the vampiric 'disease' coursing through her body), Sirilonwe was at the High Fane in Vivec as soon as the priests were awake, asking for help with a case of Corprus. It was a futile hope, though: of course the Tribunal Temple had no cure for the disease. If they did, they would make sure everyone knew about it, for the sake of the goodwill this would generate. Corprus was a cause for concern for many people on Vvardenfell, and the Temple would jump at the opportunity to be their saviour.

No, all Sirilonwe returned to me with was a spell for herself; one that would provide her some measure of protection against the disease for when she was near me.

For my part, I remained in my chambers at the top of Wolfen Keep, away from anyone and trapped in endless, circling thought. I had Corprus disease. But Dhaunayne had told me that vampires were impervious to disease! I was supposed to be immune to most normal mortal deaths! But then... that devil, Dagoth Gares had cursed me intentionally with the disease - I was sure of it.

I was keeping myself saturated in Restoration magic: I found that I could treat some of the symptoms that way and keep my mind clear of the befuddling effect the disease seemed to have. Really though, I was just fighting to keep despair at bay. Corprus resulted in madness or death - but I was already dead, so... madness? Or something else? Had a vampire ever caught Corprus before? My mind went around and around... and I was no closer to knowing what I should do.

To her credit, Sirilonwe had not reminded me of her (obviously valid, as it turned out) arguments against my going into the Sixth House base - and she still allowed me to feed from her; albeit not in our usual way. She made a cut in her wrist (with no small degree of self-control, I'm sure), and let the blood trickle into my open mouth - without actually touching me. It was an uncomfortable and vaguely embarrassing ordeal for both of us, and neither of us looked at the other while she healed herself afterwards.

There had to be something I could do! But... even if there was, it would have to wait. I could not go anywhere while the sun still shone outside, and that night I would be staying with Sirilonwe in the castle. Three days had passed. She would die and be reborn as a vampire that evening... if nothing went wrong.

I had thought that Sirilonwe might change her mind, and decide that she wanted to spend some time in the sunshine while she still could, but no; she had returned from the High Fane complaining that the sun was too hot outside, and that she was exhausted. She just wanted to get some sleep. After I had fed, Sirilonwe went straight to bed.

For the long daylight hours of that day, all I did was sit at my desk and think painful thoughts. I turned the chair around so that I could watch Sirilonwe sleep, from across the room. I had nothing else to do, and regardless; she had asked me to watch over her while she slept. She was worried about the coming evening. 'Worried' is probably too gentle a word to describe what she must have felt, actually. I think it was probably a blessing that she was able to spend the last hours of her life asleep.

She woke in the final minutes before sunset, and called out for me:

"Edward, I... can't breathe -" she took a great, shuddering gasp - "very well. What's happening?"

I was at the bedside in an instant, but caught myself before I could lay a hand on her head. My hands were covered in red lumps and blisters: it would not have been wise to touch her.

"Sleep, Siri." I told her softly. "It will be better - and I'll stay with you until you wake up."

I cast my 'Sleep' spell on her to help her - well, sleep - and her eyes closed in seconds.

I brought my chair closer to the bed to watch her. For several minutes she slept, and then... I saw the last breath leave her - and could feel the heat that had radiated from her body begin to subside. I marked the end of her mortal life at the dusk of that day. I did not move from my seat, though. Whatever was happening to her - whether she was gone forever or about to awake and remain forever - there was nothing I could do for her right then.

Still, I was very worried as I watched her absolutely motionless form. The only thing that kept panic at bay was the smell that began to rise from her: very faint at first, then stronger and stronger as the hours wore on. It was the 'Aundae' scent: the smell that originally led me to Ashmelech.

She smelt like a vampire.

And still I sat and watched; as hours passed; as her golden skin grew pale - almost yellow - and as the shadows around her remarkable eyes grew darker and darker, until they appeared almost as bruises.

Almost exactly at midnight, Sirilonwe sat bolt upright and made several strangled gasping sounds as she reflexively tried to breathe. It made me start in fright: when I had 'changed', I had remained dead for nearly a day before my return - and I had not awoken in nearly so violent and sudden a fashion.

Her mouth opened and closed a few times as she continued her (needless) struggle to breathe, and then she grunted, and touched a hand to her mouth. She had bitten her lip with her new fangs, I think. By the time I found my voice, it was too late to reassure her; she had relaxed enough to realise she no longer needed to breathe. A trickle of blood ran from her lip and down her chin. She looked so beautiful. I was so relieved.

"Sirilonwe..." I said softly.

Her eyes fixed on me, and I saw that they had changed: there was a burnished orange glimmer to them now, rather than the golden glow of before. An ecstatic grin (that revealed her elegant new fangs) spread across her face, and she leapt up and threw her arms around me - never-mind my Corprus. Neither of us said anything: we did not need to. We both knew then that she was alright - that she had escaped the supposedly inevitable fate of all mortals.

I had not lost her. But... I still had Corprus disease. Would she lose me?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

great story, i has just read it all. elegant fangs.... must be like dwarvs the like womans beards... keep vriting it is great. i just had to play morrowind agin and uset many of the mods you have made links to

sleep deep, sleep silece my child, sleep from the death of the world.

Friday, May 05, 2006 9:37:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

This was great.

Trivia Question posted by Random - 3E 288.

Joseph - I can't picture things in my head either.

Random - Morrowind is really the only game I play. Yes I do play other bames but Morrowind keeps pulling me back. It's unhealthy (I think).

Morrowind Trivia - What happened in 3E 249?

Saturday, May 06, 2006 12:15:00 am  
Anonymous Person said...

Stygian - Who is Whitney? Girl from work/school?

Saturday, May 06, 2006 12:17:00 am  
Anonymous Matar said...

Great House Dagoth ( Master Index Compatibility ).esp
Great House Dagoth.esp

HMMMMMMMM curious......

Illuminated Order v1.0.esp

One day you should get started on this mod. It is really good.


Me lovy cheap power!


Great mod! Though I am no longer in my EVIL mod stage.

Saturday, May 06, 2006 3:08:00 am  
Anonymous DaBigPman said...

well u guys are NERDS!!!! i wish i new that much about morrowind. Can't someone just like a game without knowing the whole history. well anyway it doesnt matter. u still havent guessed my favorite weapon. it is an enchanted Daedric Dai-Katana with 1 - 100 fire damge. Can kill almost any NPC with one hit. Great Weapon.

Saturday, May 06, 2006 5:32:00 am  
Anonymous Stygian said...

For the longs daylight hours of that day, all I did was sit at my desk and think painful thoughts. I turned the chair around so that I could watch Sirilonwe sleep, from across the room. I had nothing else to do, and regardless; she had asked me to watch over her while she slept. She was worried about the coming evening. 'Worried' is probably too gentle a word to describe what she must have felt, actually. I think it was probably a blessing that she was able to spend the last hours of her life asleep.

Two things about the bolded part. First, notice the word 'Longs.' Should that not be 'Long?'

Also, 'daylight hours of that day' seems a littl redundant, eh?

Person -- random is the one who mentioned a 'Whitney,' not me. I gave no name ;)
Although I dreamt about her last night, too... But my brother was there... And I woke up very angry...

Saturday, May 06, 2006 8:26:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To anonymous who posted last chapter: Correct! Seanwen (heh, my name's Sean) the Altmer in the vivec arena is the heavy armor master trainer, and Shardie the Redguard in the Buckmoth courtyard is the block master trainer.


Saturday, May 06, 2006 10:49:00 am  
Blogger Joseph said...

Thanks anonymous - glad you like it. :-)

Matar: I knew you would spot that one. I played the Great House Dagoth mod through with another character (up until I encountered a show-stopping bug, that is). I've also already played through the Illuminated Order mod - it is very good. Infernal Contract is one of the mods I've never gotten around to trying.

DaBigPman: Incidentally, the only way I'd know the answer to most of these trivia questions is if I looked them up in the Construction Set, or at the Imperial Library ( Way too obscure for me, most of them. :-)

Stygian: Thanks - I fixed that typo. As to the possibly redundant part, well I can see what you mean, but it's not really redundant if you consider a day to go for 24 hours: as we do - and as a vampire would have to. ;-)

Hurrah for clunky sentences, anyway. ;-)

- Joseph.

Saturday, May 06, 2006 10:58:00 am  
Anonymous Matar said...

Infernal Contract is one of the mods I've never gotten around to trying.

Eh not missing much. It's ok but would not fit in your story and the lore... well the lore fucks with the real lore..

Heh devil in morrowind.

Saturday, May 06, 2006 12:56:00 pm  
Anonymous Person said...

Stygian - Oops. But my Question still stands.

Joseph and DaBigPMan - I play a lot, as I said. So thats why I know so much. My heads also like a sponge: Sucks in everything.

DabigPMan - I normally just enchant a weapon with a Golden Saint (400 charge) and a small spell of Frost, Shock and Fire, about 3 points of damage each element. But your weapon is just fine. But I find that stuff like that eats up too much charge.

Morrowind Trivia - Who is Bolrin?

Morrowind Trivia - What happened in 3E 249?

Saturday, May 06, 2006 7:22:00 pm  
Blogger Joseph said...

Stygian: Err... which question still stands?

- Joseph.

Saturday, May 06, 2006 8:16:00 pm  
Anonymous Constant said...

Joseph: I think he meant the question for Random, about Whitney.

Nice chapter again, though it could have been longer.

Saturday, May 06, 2006 8:52:00 pm  
Anonymous Stygian said...

Person said that, not me!

;_; Stop confusing me with people!

Anyway, the girl I was talking about is from school.

We hardly talked at all yesterday she is nae on right nao.


Saturday, May 06, 2006 11:41:00 pm  
Anonymous Random said...

Whitney's a chick i know. she's a friend from school.
Person: Nothing happened in 3E 249 as far as i'm concerned, do you know how hard it would be to find out what happened? But is'nt Bolrin the master trainer for Axe?

I knew asking what happened in all the different years was a bad idea

Sunday, May 07, 2006 12:26:00 am  
Blogger Joseph said...

Person: Okay, since I knew where to get the answer to this one, this is what happened in 3E 249:

"The Camoran Usurper led an army of daedra and undead on a rampage through Valenwood, conquering kingdom after kingdom."

Thankyou Imperial Library. :-)

Constant: Funnily enough, the length of this chapter is closer to what I had originally intended for all the chapters when I first started Frost in Morrowind. Almost every other chapter just got away from me when I was writing... :-)

It's about pacing, anyway. If this chapter was to be longer, it would have either ended in a strange place, or just been padded with inconsequential stuff.

- Joseph.

Sunday, May 07, 2006 11:43:00 am  
Blogger Mindstroller said...

yeah i know what you mean joseph. Its hard to find a good place to stop and yet not stop too early. Thats kinda a problem ive been having with my oblivion journal. i think i can overcome it though

Sunday, May 07, 2006 12:56:00 pm  

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