On Cipher’s Midden

Author: Anonymous
Released In:

Settlements and safe locations throughout Apocrypha are as rare as snowballs in the Deadlands. Still, when Hermaeus Mora began inviting mortals from Nirn to become Ciphers of the Eye, a need for accommodations and the basic necessities of life became an imperative. It wasn’t long before those initial ciphers gathered in one place and set up the first shelters on the site of what is now known as Cipher’s Midden.

Today, Cipher’s Midden serves numerous functions. Primarily, it is the headquarters of the loose confederation of scholars that make up the Ciphers of the Eye. Their organization can be referred to as undefined at best, as they have no structural ranks or hierarchy. Instead, ciphers aid each other in their various tasks and research or not, but they all know they can enter Cipher’s Midden to find food, water, shelter, and the company of like-minded and learned individuals.

Built among the great stacks of books that rise like hills around the region, Cipher’s Midden is a collection of wooden and stone structures and elevated walkways constructed on a piece of land surrounded on three sides by the inky waterways of the Endless Library. Here, visitors can receive refuge and help navigating the twisting paths of Apocrypha, and the ciphers live and work, sometimes gathering in Ciphers Hall when presenting scholarly research to a broader audience.

The Dremora Zil is the latest in a line of Daedric merchants to supply Cipher’s Midden with food, water, and other necessary supplies. He trades with consortiums operating out of Fargrave and other Oblivion sites, but whatever goods he has available depends entirely on supply and demand.

One thing to note about the everchanging stacks of Cipher’s Midden. While researchers come from far and wide to delve into the mountains of books tended to by the ciphers, finding anything specific is difficult without magical aid of some sort. The contents of the stacks change constantly, and there is little rhyme or reason to the way the ciphers catalog the collection. That’s why visiting scholars and mages go to great lengths to forge relationships with specific ciphers who can then help them conduct their research.

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