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Elder Knowledge

Author: 
Fiore1300
Librarian Comment: 

This page remains a work in progress. Nothing here is a final edit.

Player Character

Do you know where I can find an Elder Scroll?

Paarthurnax

Krosis. No. I know little of what has passed below in the long years I have lived here.

You are likely better informed than I.

Player Character

Hmm. Esbern or Arngeir might have some idea.

Paarthurnax

Trust your instincts, Dovahkiin. Your blood will show you the way.

Player Character

What do I do with the Elder Scroll when I find it?

Paarthurnax

Return it here, to the Tiid-Ahraan. Then... Kelle vomindok. Nothing is certain with such things...

But I believe the Scroll's bond with the Tiid-Ahraan will allow you a... a seeing, a vision of the moment of its creation.

Then you will feel - know - Dragonrend, in the power of its first expression.

You will see them... wuth fadonne... my friends - Hakon, Gormlaith, Felldir.

Player Character

Hakon, Gormlaith, Felldir? Who are they?

Paarthurnax

The first mortals that I taught the Thu'um - the first Tongues. The leaders of the rebellion against Alduin.

They were mighty, in their day. Even to attempt to defeat Alduin... sahrot hunne. The Nords have had many heroes since, but none greater.

Player Character

How could an Elder Scroll cast Alduin through time?

Paarthurnax

Vomindok. I do not know. Perhaps in the very doing they erased the knowing of it from Time itself.

The dov are children of Akatosh. Thus we are specially... attuned to the flow of Time. Perhaps also uniquely vulnerable.

I warned them against such a rash action. Even I could not foresee its consequences. Nust ni hon. They would not listen.

Player Character

You mean you were there?

Paarthurnax

Yes. There were a few of us that rebelled against Alduin's thur... his tyranny. We aided the humans in his overthrow.

But they did not trust us. Ni ov. Their inner councils were kept hidden from us.

I was far from here on the day of Alduin's downfall. But all dov felt the... sundering of Time itself.

Player Character

What does the Dragonrend Shout actually do?

Paarthurnax

I cannot tell you in detail. I never heard it used. Kogaan. It was the first Thu'um created solely by mortals.

It was said to force a dragon to experience the concept of Mortality. A truly vonmindoraan... incomprehensible idea to the immortal dov.

Player Character

You're the Master of the Greybeards. Do others come here to train?

Paarthurnax

I have taught the Way of the Voice for centuries and the Thu'um since long before that.

But no, Dovahkiin. Others do not come here to train anymore. Saraan. You are the first in over a hundred years.

I meditate on the Rotmulaag - the Words of Power. I counsel in their use. It is enough for me.

Player Character

You meditate on the Words? How?

Paarthurnax

Knowing a Word of Power is to take its meaning into yourself.

Contemplate the meaning of a Rotmulaag. You will become closer to that Word, as it fills your inner self.

Will I teach you, Dovahkiin? What Word calls you to deeper understanding? There are three to master: Fus, Feim, and Yol.

Player Character

Fus

Paarthurnax

It is called "Force" in your tongue. But as you push the world, so does the world push back.

Think of the way force may be applied effortessly. Imagine but a whisper pushing aside all in its path.

That is "Fus." Let its meaning fill you. Su'um ahrk morah. You will push the world harder than it pushes back.

(I leave Paarthurnax on the summit to return to High Hrothgar and inquire with Arngeir as to the whereabouts of an Elder Scroll)

Arngeir

So... you spoke to Paarthurnax. The dragonblood burns bright within you.

Did he tell you what you wanted to know? Did he teach you the Dragonrend Shout?

Player Character

No, but he told me how to find out.

Arngeir

So be it. If he believes it is necessary for you to learn this... we will bow to his wisdom.

Player Character

I need the Elder Scroll the ancients used. Do you know where to find it?

Arngeir

We have never concerned ourselves with the Scrolls. The gods themselves would rightly fear to tamper with such things.

As for where to find it... such blasphemies have always been the stock in trade of the mages of Winterhold.

They may be able to tell you something about the Elder Scroll you seek.

Player Character

Any idea where to find the Elder Scroll?

Arngeir

Such blasphemies are the calling of mages, not followers of the Way.

Take your question to the College of Winterhold. They may be able to help you.

Player Character

Is there another way to defeat Alduin?

Arngeir

Perhaps not. But this Shout was used once before, was it not? And here we are again.

Have you considered that Alduin was not meant to be defeated?

Those who overthrew him in ancient times only postponed the day of reckoning, they did not stop it.

If the world is meant to end, so be it. Let it end and be reborn.

Player Character

What's so bad about the Dragonrend Shout?

Arngeir

It was created by those who had lived under the unimaginable cruelty of Alduin's Dragon Cult.

Their whole lives were consumed with hatred for dragons, and they poured all their anger and hatred into this Shout.

When you learn a Shout, you take it into your very being. In a sense, you become the Shout.

In order to learn and use this Shout, you will be taking this evil into yourself.

Player Character

What do you have against the Blades?

Arngeir

The Blades were born of dragon-hating crusaders. They still carry that legacy although they may not remember from whence it came.

They carried out a genocide of dragons when they first came to Tamriel, and now they will do it again, with your help.

(I leave Arngeir and High Hrothgar and journey north towards the freezing city of Winterhold to meet with the mages there. After passing through the Hall of Elements I enter the Arcanaeum, which is where the college keeps its arcane texts. If the mages keep an Elder Scroll anywhere, it would be here)

Urag gro-Shub

You are now in the Arcanaeum, of which I am in charge. It might as well be my own little plane of Oblivion.

Disrupt my Arcanaeum, and I will have you torn apart by angry Atronachs.

Now, do you require assistance?

Player Character

I'm looking for an Elder Scroll.

Urag gro-Shub

And what do you plan to do with it? Do you even know what you're asking about, or are you just someone's errand boy?

Player Character

Of course I do. Do you have one here?

Urag gro-Shub

You think that even if I did have one here, I would let you see it?

It would be kept under the highest security. The greatest thief in the world wouldn't be able to lay a finger on it.

Player Character

What about the Dragonborn?

Urag gro-Shub

What about... wait. Are you? Were you the one the Greybeards were calling?

I'll bring you everything we have on them, but it's not much.

So don't get your hopes up. It's mostly lies, leavened with rumor and conjecture.

(Urag gro-Shub grabs two books off the shelves and lays them on the front counter)

Here you go. Try not to spill anything on them.

(I read through the two tomes, looking for any information that can help me. The first is called Effects of the Elder Scrolls, which talked about the Cult of the Ancestor Moths from Cyrodiil, but didn't illuminate me further to the location of a possible scroll. The second book is titled Ruminations on the Elder Scrolls. Its absolutely obfuscating nonsense. Perhaps there is some sort of code? I bring this to the attention of Urag gro-Shub)

Player Character

This "Ruminations" book is incomprehensible.

Urag gro-Shub

Aye, that's the work of Septimus Signus.

He's the world's master of the nature of Elder Scrolls, but... well.

He's been gone for a long while. Too long.

Player Character

Where did he go?

Urag gro-Shub

Somewhere up north, in the ice fields.

Said he found some old Dwemer artifact, but... well, that was years ago.

Haven't heard from him since.

(sounds like this Septimus Signus fellow is dead. Its not much to go on, but its my only lead. I don't have a choice but to explore the ice fields of the Sea of Ghosts. I bundle up and travel north. After some searching, I find an abandoned boat moored to an iceberg and a wooden door leading inside. I investigate and find it to be Septimus Signus' outpost. He's still alive, but he doesn't acknowledge my arrival. Within the ice cave is a gigantic Dwemer artifact, mostly encased by ice. Signs paces in front of it, muttering to himself)

Septimus Signus

Dig, Dwemer, in the beyond. I'll know your lost unknown and rise to your depths.

(I approach Septimus Signus)

When the top level was built, no more could be placed. It was and is the maximal apex.

Player Character

What brings you to this remote place?

Septimus Signus

The ice entombs the heart. The bane of Kagrenac and Dagoth Ur.

To harness it is to know. The fundaments. The Dwemer lockbox hides it from me.

The Elder Scroll gives insight deeper than the deep ones, though. To bring about the opening.

Player Character

You have an Elder Scroll? Here?

Septimus Signus

I've seen enough to know their fabric. The warp of air, the weft of time.

But no, it is not in my possession.

Player Character

So, where is the Scroll?

Septimus Signus

Here.

Well, here as in this plane. Mundus. Tamriel. Nearby, relatively speaking.

On the cosmological scale, it's all nearby.

Player Character

Can you help me get the Elder Scroll or not?

Septimus Signus

One block lifts the other. Septimus will give you want you want, but you must bring him something in return.

Player Character

What do you want?

Septimus Signus

You see this masterwork of the Dwemer. Deep inside their greatest knowings.

Septimus is clever among men, but he is but an idiot child compared to the dullest of the Dwemer.

Lucky then they left behind their own way of reading the Elder Scrolls.

In the depths of Blackreach one yet lies.

Have you heard of Blackreach? "Cast upon where Dwemer cities slept, the yearning spire hidden learnings kept."

Player Character

Where is this "Blackreach"?

Septimus Signus

Under deep. Below the dark. The hidden keep. Tower Mzark.

Alftand. The point of puncture, of first entry, of the tapping.

Delve to its limits, and Blackreach lies just beyond.

But not all can enter there. Only Septimus knows the hidden key to loose the lock to jump beneath the deathly rock.

Player Character

How do I get in?

Septimus Signus

Two things I have for you. Two shapes. One edged, one round.

The edged lexicon, for incribing. To us, a hunk of metal. To the Dwemer, a full library of knowings. But... empty.

Find Mzark and its sky-dome. The machinations there will be read the Scroll and lay the lore upon the cube.

Trust Septimus. He knows you can know.

Player Character

What do I do with this sphere?

Septimus Signus

The deepest doors of Dwemer listen for singing. It plays the attitude of notes proper for opening. Can you not hear it? Too low for hearings?

Player Character

What do I do with this cube?

Septimus Signus

To glimpse the world inside an Elder Scroll can damage the eyes. Or the mind, as it has to Septimus.

The Dwemer found a loophole, as they always do. To focus the knowledge away and inside without harm.

Place the lexicon in their contraption and focus the knowings into it. When it brims with glow, bring it back and Septimus can read once more.

Player Character

What is an Elder Scroll?

Septimus Signus

You look to your left, you see one way. You look to your right, you see another. But neither is any harder than the opposite.

But the Elder Scrolls... they look left and right in the stream of time. The future and past are as one.

Sometimes they even look up. What do they see then? What if they dive in? Then the madness begins.

Player Character

What do you want with the Elder Scroll?

Septimus Signus

Ooooh, an observant one. How clever to ask of Septimus.

This Dwemer lockbox. Look upon it and wonder.

Inside is the heart. The heart of a god! The heart of you. And me.

But it was hidden away. Not by the Dwarves, you see. They were already gone.

Someone else. Unseen. Unknown. Found the heart, and with a flair for the ironical, used Dwarven trickery to lock it away.

The scroll will give the deep vision needed to open it.

For not even the strongest machinations of the Dwemer can hold off the all-sight given by an Elder Scroll.

Player Character

(I leave for Alftand. Upon arriving I find the remains of a failed archaeological expedition, and contend with both diabolical dwarven machines and the ruin's twisted Falmer inhabitants. Eventually I find the sealed passageway leading down to Blackreach, and I use the sphere Septimus gave me to activate the Dwarven Mechanism to open the way. Blackreach is huge... an entire ecosystem underground. It might be beautiful if it weren't plagued with Falmer and their Charus companions. I make my way through carefully until I finally reach Tower Mzark. Inside I find a complex contraption. Using the lexicon, I activate it and begin pressing buttons until the mechanism lowers a container from the ceiling and reveals the Elder Scroll hidden within. I take the Elder Scroll and leave for High Hrothgar. The world is at stake, after all. There will be plenty of time afterwar to return the lexicon to old crazy Septimus Signus once the threat of Alduin is past.)