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.

Friday, May 12, 2006

48: The ordinary day

My arrival in Vivec this morning was quiet, but obvious. I enjoyed the brisk walk from Pelagiad, pausing briefly to laugh with a passing netch herder. It was good to know that for some there is still a normalcy to their days. As I left her, and the herd of great gas filled beasts who floated gently on the morning breezes, my smile faded. I live constantly in the shadow of the pending war; the war that must be won in order for her normal life, and untold others, to continue. So I crossed the bridge to the Canton with a renewed sense of commitment, but no particular direction.

It was important to be noticed, so I paused on the seemingly endless climb up the ramps of the foreign quarter to swap gossip with an Ordinator. It was not much of a trade. I gave him a vague 'outsider's view' of the turmoil in Telvanni territory, filled with 'as I heard it' and 'from what I saw' disclaimers. In return he gave me a description of the escaped prisoner. I was appropriately shocked.

"Escaped?" I exclaimed. "I had heard her name, and was thinking she could be a distant relation. I wonder if my steward had a chance to check on that for me."

"She did," I was told. My source paused, recognizing that he was slipping beyond common gossip and divulging information about an investigation. My former services to the Ordinators no doubt stood me in good stead. "Just between us Archmage, Malven was the last person to visit the prisoner, and initially there were some questions about that raised."


"Yes. But the guard who was on duty at the time is sure that nothing was passed to the prisoner, and didn't think the conversation went particularly well for the prisoner either."

"Malven had some simple tests. Not likely that we are related, and if not it would have been a short interview."

"That would be it then. Apparently she was only there for a few minutes."

"You said there were questions. Is Malven a suspect?"

"No. Like I said, the guard on duty was very sure."

"But, he would never want to admit that she might have slipped the prisoner a lockpick or something, so I don't know if that really means anything..."

"True enough. But there was a thorough search on the next shift as well. There were questions at first, but Malven has been cleared. No lockpick, by the way, she teleported out of the cell."

"Teleported? I thought that all prison cells were enchanted to drain magicka?"

"They are. Most likely someone slipped a magicka restorative into her food."

"Ah." I paused. "I'll have our records checked. See if any of our alchemists has sold such a potion in the last few days. Maybe they would remember something unusual about the buyer. You might suggest to whoever is in charge of the investigation that they could check with me about that."

"Good idea, Archmage."

I grinned. "I'm sure they would think of that themselves, but it never hurts to have a suggestion." It's hard to guess a facial expression behind the stiff Ordinator mask, but his eyes were smiling. I continued on to my office.

Just a typical day in the office. I gave Craetia a heads up that the Ordinators may be inquiring, and she set about auditing the alchemy records. I reviewed the summaries of financial and training records from the guild halls, and sent off brief comments to the stewards. Mostly just encouragement, though profits are slipping again in Ald-ruhn. Edwinna sometimes gets too wrapped up in her research and needs to be prodded, gently.

Word went out quickly through the guild guides that I was in the headquarters, and by noon a stream of reports marked 'personal attention' was flowing onto my desk. I do not spend many full days in the office, but when I have the chance I encourage as much direct correspondence from the membership as possible. It is a very 'informal' system, which works for everyone. I might make a couple of margin notes, and usually write 'thanks' at the bottom of the messages, then they are resealed and returned. Knowing their note will not be filed somewhere seems to make people more comfortable about sharing their opinions. From the multitude of brief notes I can get a sense of the halls that I might not get passing through. As in any organization, hardly anyone is completely satisfied, but I get to hear things before anyone is seriously upset.

In the afternoon I met with Skink. Not surprisingly, the notes from those assigned to Telvanni territory conveyed a lot of concern. What I had not realized though, and passed on to Skink, is that in the lower ranks of the guild the upheaval in the Telvanni council is heightening the usual anxieties. Fore-warned is fore-armed, and he will be letting his people know that there is every reason to believe the changes will improve the guild's relationship with the Telvanni. Obviously he won't be going into great detail, but it will reduce the strain. For his part, Skink brought me up to date on progress in the council. Baladas, Aryon, and Neloth compromise a majority, and they have started easing the Telvanni into preparation for war. They have suggested that a visit to Therana will be in order soon, but it is not called for yet.

Late in the day the message I was waiting for came from Ald-ruhn:

Initial payment on your mercenary contract has been received. Prospects will be available for interview in the Ald-ruhn hall during normal business hours. Thank you for choosing the fighter's guild.

Percius Mercius

Sometimes things work out.


Blogger Mindstroller said...

Haha, nice. I like that last sentence, and its good to hear about the micromanagement that the guild should have. very nice chapter

1:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I liked the part about Ald'ruhn's profits slipping. It is the small things like that which make this seem so much more real.

Great Job again Tim!


4:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been away a while, and have greatly enjoyed reading several journal entries in one sitting.

It's getting very gripping; but I do enjoy the entries which fill in some of the background Mage's Guild stuff, and the inclusion of other everyday details.

It continually brings Morrowind to life. Thank you.


4:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hei, i've got a question.
Jospeh's Morrowind journal just got through that stage of the mainquest where the character gets the corpus disease and cures the disease after that with the help of Divayth Fyr.
I just accidentally started to think how You, Tim, solved that part of the story, so i went looking through older posts of this journal and there was nothing about that.
You jumped from the Urshilaku ancestral tomb quest right to Koguruhn quest. Why?

5:07 AM  
Blogger Tim said...

I can't exactly answer your 120 of the first journal is titled 'Incurable'. Arvil did a bunch of guild stuff and pilgrimage stuff in between getting the Bone-biter bow and catching corprus, but he didn't skip anything.

7:07 AM  
Blogger Mindstroller said...


two weeks in a row? its okay, its happened to me before too, and ive only just gotten started on my oblivion journal!

2:40 PM  
Blogger Tim said...

Painful admission: I'm stuck...yet again.

I'm halfway through what I think will be a good post. It is pretty much complete fabrication, since this part of the game seems to be just a matter of scurrying from place to place bribing or killing people. Fun in its way, but not very much of a plot line to work with.

9:44 PM  
Blogger Joseph said...

Well, you're doing an amazing job of it, Tim; even if it is difficult. Just thought I should repeat here what I said over at my little MW story-site: I'm still quite jealous of your ability to extrapolate events in the game into such a complete - and fascinating - world.

Can't wait to see how it turns out.

- Joseph.

1:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i found that chapter you mentioned (120, incurable). i was looking for that part of the story in a wrong place...

5:18 AM  

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