This is the autobiographical journal of Arvil Bren, a somewhat reluctant hero who has been placed on an unknown quest by powers that he barely knows exist. Follow his journey as it is updated daily, Monday through Friday, and enjoy! These are the most recent entries in Arvil Bren's third journal; Politics of the Redoran. His first journal can be found in its entirety here. His second journal, Trail of the Archmage can be found here.

Monday, February 28, 2005

Day Sixty-one: On the right side of Vivec City

This morning I had an early breakfast at the Halfway Tavern. Leaving Pelagiad, and Ahnassi, was difficult. It may be a while before I can go home. How Drelasa Ramothran, the publican, keeps up I will never understand. The Halfway is always busy in the evenings; with clandestine meetings of thieves guild operatives, travelers on the Vivec to Balmora road, and off duty Legionnaires from the fort. Drelasa never closes the bar if there is a hint of a paying customer. But she is there cooking breakfast before dawn for the guards who are going on shift and want something more appealing than the barracks fare. She is a marvel.

When I arrived in Vivec I warily approached the first Ordinator that I saw. He was surly, as usual.

"What do you want, outlander?"

"I want no trouble, I assure you of that. I just want to report that there is a Daedric cult operating in the underworks."

"We here rumors like that every day, outlander. Move along and don't waste my time."

I couldn't help it. My mind started running a tally on the value of the Indoril armor this fool was so pompously filling. My thoughts ran their course, but I stuck to mine. "In this case though the rumor includes a location of their shrine to their bad Daedra. I've seen it myself. In the underworks beneath St. Olms canton."

"I am patrolling here, outlander, in the foreign quarter." He waved his hand up at the towering canton. "Someone is killing outlanders, outlanders like you. Personally, I'm all for it, but right now I have a job to do; finding this killer before they find you, or some other outlander, and slit their throat. Now, you might tell someone patrolling over in St. Olms, or you might take your tale right to the Office of the Watch in the Hall of Justice. If you keep bothering me I might slit your throat myself. One more outlander chalked up to the killer."

I left. That conversation did not go at all the way I had hoped. Once I had walked a ways I was able to give the Ordinator a little benefit of the doubt. A murderer loose on his own beat would take precedence over a Daedra cult in a far corner of the city I guessed. His advice, though badly delivered, seemed sound. I headed for the Hall of Justice.

The Hall of Justice could not be called friendly confines. The more polite muttered 'outlander' as we passed in the hall, but many of them did not greet me at all. Some I wondered if they even saw me; others I knew did when I heard them hiss 'scum', or something worse, after they had passed. By the time I found the Office of the Watch I was wondering if I was wasting my time. I had intended to show some good faith and earn some support from the local authorities, but it seemed unlikely to work. My timing turned out to be pretty good though.

At the Office of the Watch I was met by Tarar Braryn, a subcommander of the watch. The Order of the Watch is one of four Orders, and is responsible for security within the city. He was clearly unfriendly, but polite. I gave him a thorough report of all that I knew about the shrine.

"And what had you wandering the sewers under our city?" he asked abruptly.

I told him about Moroni Uvelas and her lost husband, how I had found his ring on the corprus stalker, and my suspicions about the cult being the source of the disease. "I didn't get a name, but a skooma addict, Khajiit, that I ran into said the cult sometimes takes in addicts and they are never seen again. I assume that is what happened to Uvelas."

"You need to be careful in the sewers, Breton," he said. "You seem a good man, for an outlander. It seems someone has taken to killing outlanders, and until we find them you should probably stay in better traveled areas."

"Mostly I do," I said.

"Good. Where could we find you if we have any questions?"

"At the Mage's Guild in the foreign quarter," I replied. "I don't stay there, but if you leave a message with the guild guide I will get it. I will be coming and going quite a bit in the next few days. Mage Guild business."

"Ah, the Mage's Guild," his voice softened. "Arvil Bren, this is unofficial, but I need a favor."

A chance to get in good with a subcommander of the watch! "What do you need?"

"I let the drink get a little the better of me last night, and responded to arrogance with arrogance of my own. I need you to convey my apologies."

"To who?" I asked.

"Trebonius Artorius. I called him a flathead. This morning I woke up with a rash that seems impervious to all spells, potions and cures. I suspect I will be scratching until he gets my apology."

I could hardly believe that he had called the Archmage of Vvardenfell a flathead, and could even less believe that the Archmage would be so petty, but I told him I would see what I could do. As it turns out, I overestimated Trebonius. He is that petty...and a bit of a flathead as well. When I delivered Braryn's apology he drew a potion from within his robe. "Ha! I thought that would teach him some humility! Give him this, with my regards." I bristled slightly at being ordered about, but only to myself. The self absorbed archmage took no notice.

Sirlonwe did notice. The willowy high elf called me aside and led me to her chamber. "You need to be quicker Arvil Bren. That arrogant son of a guar hands off orders like a kagouti shakes off ticks. Who has he cursed with his petty rash this time?" When I told her she just shook her head. "A subcommander of the Ordinators! Who will he offend next? As if we outlanders weren't unwelcome enough!"

From my previous visits I knew that Sirlonwe would waste no time spreading this gossip through the guild hall. Once I saw that she was deeply engrossed I slipped back to her room and took the book Edwinna needs from her closet. Sirlonwe is so involved in undermining Trebonius that she might never notice it missing.

I delivered the cure to Tarar Braryn. He had already sent a pair of Ordinators into the sewers of St. Olms to check out the shrine. They had apparently identified the remains of one or more of the cult's leaders. Tarar grudgingly added respect to his gratitude for the cure. "Dangerous characters. The city is better off without them. We don't encourage taking the law into your own hands around here Arvil Bren, but I suppose we can thank you this once. My men will be quite busy rounding up their followers."

The rumor mill of the city will get that around. It should make it a little easier to complete my tasks for Caius. The last informant I need to contact works in the main temple library. Being somewhat a friend of a watch subcommander I may be able to get in there without being hounded by the Ordinators.

I slipped through the guild hall, avoiding the archmage, and got transported to Ald-ruhn. Edwinna was very pleased to have the Chimarvamidium, and promised to return it quickly. I think I'll let the word churn among the Ordinators and take a few days away from Vivec, just in case Sirlonwe notices her loss.


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