In Which Merawen Finally Returns at Least a Bit to the Main Plot

As of this session I found myself growing a bit weary of tromping around throwing a bunch of Illusion and Destruction spells around, and looking for excuses to pick fights with bandits and/or Falmer. So in between doing all of that, I did finally go to Dragonsreach in Whiterun, and get the Jarl to agree to help me trap a dragon—if I could do something about this war thing going on.

Highlights

  • Set out from mage college on foot
  • Cut through Winterhold and went west back towards Sightless Pit
  • Engaged three trolls on the way, with Fear + Incinerate spells
  • Found my way into the Sightless Pit dungeon, involved a lot of jumping down; surprisingly big dungeon!
  • Hit a bunch of Falmer Warmongers and Chaurus Reapers with Soul Trap + Incinerate
  • Ran out of magicka potions almost at the end, switched off to dragonbone bow and Nightingale Armor to get the last couple of enemies; made it out after clearing the boss chest
  • Got out of the dungeon to discover I was wielding Falmer arrows, heh, first time I actually got a proper look at the quiver
  • Headed south; took out a couple of trolls
  • Legendary Dragon attacked me near Mount Anthor; did Dragon Aspect Shout and got Ancient Dragonborn assisting, but the dragon chomped me
  • Thrown back to the part where I came out of the Sightless Pit; went south again, and went straight to dragonscale armor and dragonbone bow and arrows to take out the dragon
  • Round two with the Legendary Dragon, did Dragon Aspect Shout as soon as I saw it, and this time I was able to take it down with arrows without needing the Ancient Dragonborn to manifest and help
  • Proceeded on my way; took out a troll and a sabre cat near Fort Kastav, back to using magic for attacks
  • Had a bunch of trouble with Fort Kastav, got killed once, had to be a lot more careful with my sneaking; the necromancers were too powerful for Frenzy, so I wound up hitting the exterior of the fort with Storm Call Shout, and then running like hell
  • Wound up back behind Windhelm where I can’t get over the wall; fast traveled down to Shor’s Stone so I could head into Riften
  • Sold a bunch of things to Balimund and Tonilia
  • Still no sign of Ebony Warrior, so headed out on foot again cross-country
  • Killed a couple of bears and a spriggan on the way
  • Wound up at Lost Knife Hideout after following a long zig-zag trail down the mountainside; decided not to engage with hideout for now
  • Found unmarked locale with a fallen giant tree making a natural bridge over a chasm, attempted to cross it, and oh hey look, bandit! Unrelenting-Force’d her off the tree and proceeded to cross
  • Wound up being just south of Hillgrund’s Tomb; from there I knew my way back to Whiterun!
  • Vampire masquerade! Put a stop to that bullshit right quick with Stendarr’s Aura + Fireball
  • Vampire assassin, another one sent by Broken Fang Cave; this was another situation where I kept beating her health bar down, she kept running off, and then coming back under the impression that if she tried just once more, she might be able to hit me? Lol
  • Made it to Honningbrew to sell stuff
  • Did more smithing and alchemy in Whiterun; leveled up to 83
  • Went up to Dragonsreach and collected the bounty on the Bleakwind Basin giant
  • Also finally talked to the Jarl to get him to deal with the trap the dragon plan; got quest objective to go talk to Arngeir about a peace conference
  • Boinged to Fort Dawnguard to get level 83 training, back to getting Heavy Armor training from Isran; hoofed it on foot to Riften
  • Passed a trio of Stormcloaks and then a trio of wolves; the Stormcloaks mostly killed the wolves, though I hit one with Soul Trap so got at least one filled gem out of it
  • Spotted Torvar of the Companions fighting a Nightlord Vampire; vampire came over to tangle with me and I took her out; talked briefly to Torvar, who didn’t remember if he knew me? Heh. We haven’t met, my dude
  • Went around Riften to the north side and HELLO FROST DRAGON
  • Geared up in full dragonscale, crossbow, Dragon Aspect Shout; took down the dragon; guards, Companions, and stable guy stopped to gawk
  • I went about my business and headed west around the lake
  • Got killed trying to go past Faldar’s Tooth; second time, snuck past with Invisibility + Muffle spells
  • A couple of bandits still tried to attack me, but this was a more even fight, and i was able to run like hell even after stopping to kill a frostbite spider
  • Killed a troll after crossing the bridge by the mill
  • Paused near Treva’s Watch to take that on for next time; saved for the night

Commentary

As I noted above, I’m starting to feel kind of weary of the level grinding I’ve had to do the last few sessions. It’s a bit vexing to me that the Illusion and Destruction magic schools have the bug requiring me to get up to 100 to do those quests, otherwise I’d have been able to do them by now!

So I did finally decide to move the main plot along, at least a bit. Since I was in Whiterun anyway, trying to do the smithing/crafting work and to give the Ebony Warrior a chance to show up, I went up to Dragonsreach to deal with the pending giant bounty and also to get the Jarl to agree to my dragon trapping plan. If I do something about the threat of invasion hanging over Whiterun.

With that, I have the objective now to go arrange the peace conference with the Greybeards. And that gives me an actual plot-relevant excuse to hoof it back to High Hrothgar. And to go to Solitude and Windhelm after that. Point here being, grinding is less irritating if I’m also making plot-relevant progress. :)

My Destruction is closer to 100 now than my Illusion is, Destruction was at 96 and Illusion at 92 as of the end of this session, so I will probably make it to the Destruction Ritual Quest first. (Though that’ll depend on how often I get to exercise Illusion, I guess?)

Any way you slice it, though, I feel like I have maybe another week’s worth of play or so left in this character. I’ll fight the Ebony Warrior—though that depends on whether he shows up or not. And I’ll try to get my Illusion and Destruction high enough to do those quests. Though if they aren’t there by the time I go to both Solitude and Windhelm to arrange the peace conference, and then get that peace conference to happen, I may just bail on all three objectives and proceed to finish up with the main plot so I can finally stand Merawen down.

So next time I’ll be trying to clear Treva’s Watch, since that at least has a mini-quest involved with it. After that, we’ll see. I’m high enough level at this point that I’m finding I can’t throw Frenzy spells around too easily, bandit and mage opponents are leveling up with me, too high for that spell to affect. So I’ll need Illusion boosts if I’m going to pull off throwing Frenzy on them.

Screenshots