Wrecking of the Veiled Queen's Plan
It had been a long time since I, Asarlai Thornai, had set foot in Auridon. I left when fairly young and still adventurous. I’m definitely not the only Altmer who has found their home to be with the Ebonheart Pact. Thus, this return to Auridon, thanks to Cadwell, ended up throwing me into the middle of Altmer political life. Something I thankfully avoided most of my life due to not being of noble birth and spending most of my time training with the Mages Guild.
I get things straightened out in Vulkhel Guard only to find this is the tip of the iceberg. It seems there is a major threat to the throne and many things trying to stop Queen Ayrenn from completing all the official rituals expected as customs of our people. I can see why the Queen needed a few years off to go adventuring before settling down to this responsibility. Her gallivanting off only helped put a wedge in the works between her and the people.
Now that I’m mixed up in this whole thing with the Queen decidedly liking me, I traveled to Tanzelwil to meet up with the Queen’s entourage who were just outside. Her brother, Prince Naemon, is at the entrance where most of the entourage had stopped due to the restless spirits. The Queen and some priestess were within to complete the required rituals to obtain the ancestors blessing for her.
Prince Naemon seems not to like this and equates it to New Life Festival time where the family gets drinking from noon and then everyone wants you dead. While his sister had been off adventuring, he had been spending his time doing all the required steps of becoming the next monarch. Her return made a mess of all that. After all, he was the one that had completed the 3555 days of Altmer custom and ceremoniarchy. Nobles even like making up their own words for special ceremonial things. I have far too many years on these whelps that I was not impressed with his story. Let’s just be honest. He was a sniveling whiner.
Once inside Tanzelwil with all its restless spirits, I met one that talked to me. It said, “Queen Ayrenn is false,” and that “the Veiled Queen would rule.” I knew nothing of a Veiled Queen. It sounded all too secretive and dark for my liking. I would rather live an open and honest life. Life is so much easier that way, and you don’t have to catalog your lies to keep the story straight with everyone. So I decided to badger this spirit a little to find out Norion was involved somehow. He was some other noble or important person from what the Queen later called the Old Guard when I met up with her. He did have known issues with the Queen’s return. I decided this spirit was not on my side and figured out I have two priestesses to find in this place to help with rituals.
I found a Priestess Langwie first. She told me of stones enchanted with dark necromantic energies and showed me one of them. She believed I might have more chance of destroying these things than she would, so she gave me her holy amulet. I used it on the stone, successfully disenchanting it. She let me keep the amulet for other stones I might find while she went to the Queen in another area of the place.
In the process of looking for more stones, which seemed to be one of the reasons the spirits were so restless, I came across Priestess Aranwen all upset sitting in some aura bubble. It seemed the spirit Colonwe, who was rather mischievous, put her there. She stated he had become far more violent in his ways, of late. The necromantic stones could have something to do with that. I helped her out and then cleared the way so she could do her part of the ritual required for the Queen to acquire the blessing of her ancestors.
With that portion of the ritual done, I stumbled upon a note by Norion discrediting Langwe and her ideas about the stones and spirits. This gave more credit to Norion being on the Veiled Queen’s side, rather than the Queen I was helping. There was at least one more stone about due to the spirit’s still being restless and I had not found the second priestess, who had a ritual piece to perform.
I found her clear across the place from where the other priestess had done her ritual. At this location the ritual included several steps summoning forth a spirit each time who would give their blessing. There were some minor interruptions I took care of, but it was completed. Near that spot was the last necromantic stone, ending that issue as well. It was time to find the Queen to see how I could help with whatever came next.
Of course, going into the tomb was involved. We were dealing with spirits of the ancestors, after all. I had seen enough crypts in my day and most of them had things you would have preferred to leave alone. To top it off the Queen was very sure Norion had to be nearby due to the necromantic stones. She said if he had truly gone to the side of the Veiled Queen, he must be ended as a traitor.
So into the tomb we went. Sure enough we found Norion. We killed him with a bit of a tussle. I found him to be the usual egotistical necromancer and simply showed him what some good ole storm calling could do. I lit him up pretty good while my clannfear gave him a few good hits, as well. It always felt good when I dispatched a known evil from the world. With him out of the way, the Queen acquired her blessing properly from the ancestors.
The Queen was off to some other duty of ceremony she must do in Skywatch where she would also meet her sister-in-law, Estre. I was left to my own devices at this time, though Battlereeve Urcelano got my attention before I could leave.
This was when I learned of the Veiled Heritance, a group of Altmer that believe the Dominion is a bad idea. They do not like wood elves, who are the short elves, or the Khajiit. I can’t remember their derogatory term for what I find to be the lovable Khajiit and it might be best not to repeat it. He told me to meet up with Razum-Dar in Mathiisen, where he was doing further research on this group.
I knew there was way more to this than just a few people not wanting the Queen to succeed in her traditional rituals to be officially consecrated. Having someone running around calling themselves the Veiled Queen was the obvious give away, but they had a whole crew working for them, too. I guess even want-to-be queens need a good entourage and army if they want a chance at the throne.
On the way to Mathiisen I came across Eminelya. For some reason the entourage went into Glister Vale instead of on to Skywatch, where the queen was going. She gave me some teleport scrolls to get people out and stated I have to actually go into the Tower of the Vale to save them. Sometimes people can do things for the stupidest reasons. This was one of those times and I headed off to figure out what lured them from their proper duties.
It turned out some bored fellow, who liked to test out people’s emotions, had them all in their private little hells. He nagged me by voice and showed up as an apparition as I dug through this mess. He was known as Sanessalmo.
First to be saved, was Lanitaale from her greed. This required me convincing her she did not need the things she wanted from the others and that they weren’t taking anything either. I honestly can’t remember the full conversation as I found it downright selfish and petty, but in the end I got her sorry self out of there.
Second to be saved was Minantille. She had obvious anger issues and it seemed anger management classes were not going to work. I actually had to slay the essence of her rage before she came to herself again. This woman I could at least understand about her rage, but even that was due to her own desires above others.
Third was Menion who was stuck in bliss. I came to the conclusion this married man must not be happy with his wife and probably saw her as the biggest nag. There was a spirit enticing him to stay with her forever and all would be grand. I had to collect spores and mushrooms in a cavern while being harassed by the evil twit keeping them there. I think the spirit trying to keep Menion there may also have talked. I ignored it and did what I had to. In the end what I made with those things saved him. He wondered how he got so caught up with that when he was married. Obviously this poor fellow was not ready to realize his marriage was not the bliss he had expected.
The fourth and final was Nuulehtel stuck in his despair. He was so depressed he couldn’t even move to start a fire for himself and would rather just freeze to death. So I ran about finding things to make a fire. In the midst of this I found an interesting note beside a skeleton. It seemed the adjutant to Senessalmo regretted how he helped, due to all the things that led to what Senessalmo had become. I freed Nuulehtel by lighting the fire and then headed off to find Senessalmo to end this once and for all.
Senessalmo was thrown out of the Altmer courts about the time the negotiations to form the Aldmeri Dominion were occurring and his wife also left him. This was all due to him casting spells to simply invoke emotion and see how people responded. Thus, we came to his present state where he worked in this, out of the way tower, where he lured people in to play with. I easily dispatched him finding yet another so called sorcerer who needed a few more lessons to beat the likes of me.
I left the entourage to make their way to Skywatch, while I headed over to Mathiisen to meet up with Razum-Dar. He was a rather cheeky, but friendly Khajiit. I remembered meeting him in Khenarthi's Roost when checking out that area before pursuing matters fully, in Auridon. I rather liked him, since there was no guile about him, even if he did seem overly sure of himself.
There were several steps to unveil what was going on here. First, I met up with Fistalle. Well, met is the wrong word considering I found her dead. There was an odd note left behind about a cat and two rats sticking their noses where they did not belong. Obviously, Fistalle was rat number one and got caught in the trap.
I decided to go check on Condalin, the forge master, and stepped inside to find members of the Veiled Heritance. I was not surprised at all. Further investigation showed that Condalin was actually supplying the Veiled Heritance per the armament inventory I perused. Even more interesting was that Canonreave Melanie was in on this deal. Not a good thing at all going on in Mathiisen.
Working with Razum-Dar, I got the honor of searching Melanie’s house while the Khajiit stayed sneakily out of sight. I found an official officer’s uniform of the Veiled Heritance in her dresser. You would think these people would hide things better to match their name.
I found Razum-Dar hiding nearby and gave him the report. In the midst of him detailing what to do next, the Khajiit told me about once riding a guar naked through an Argonian temple. Having spent a good deal of time with the Ebonheart Pact, I found this quite amusing. I properly kept my mouth shut though, when he realized he had let that slip. But that story had nothing on what I had to do next for our plan. At least I did not have to be naked to do it.
I sauntered boldly up to the place claiming I’m some hero so that Sergeant Iralundore would let me in. I immediately confronted the Canonreave accusing her of treason and working with the Veiled Heritance. As planned, I am taken captive. I wake up with a nice knot on my head and Razum-Dar grinning at me through the cell door. I liked this Khajiit, but with his sneaky skills one had to wonder how far trust should go. Anyway, there was no way my tall Altmer self, with little grace would have snuck in with him.
Next thing to do was to take out Condalin. He was no match for my storm calling and my clannfear. I found in life, that most people who puffed themselves up as important, usually were full of hot air quickly dissipated. If he had not leapt at the chance to kill me, he would have been captured alive. I’m not one to just kill everything in my path unless I know it is evil or it is dumb enough to attack me. Some may think otherwise, but they are wrong.
Razum-Dar, in the meantime had the Canonreeve trapped in the Smuggler’s Tunnel. We got in together and dispatched her, cleaning the Veiled Heritance out of Methiisen.
But now it was time to head for Skywatch where the Queen had gone. I was to meet Razum-Dar there. He, of course, would not be there openly, so he could appraise what was going on there with the Veiled Heritance. I was to find Captain Tendil, who would tell me how to find Razum-Dar in the city.
Captain Tendil was easy to find and at first, kept the discussion rather discreet without mentioning Razum-Dar. However, he must have felt more at ease as we talked, for he simply spilled out where to find the Khajiit later in the conversation.
I wandered up to the Manse, having no issues being let in despite the queen being there, and found Razum-Dar disguised as a, downright ugly, Altmer. Once in a private spot, he pulled off an earring and looked like his normal self. Then he handed me the earring, telling me to use it. So, as an ugly Altmer male, I headed off to the Barbed Hook Tavern where only the truly drunk would think I looked handsome.
Sometimes, I must just have really good luck. The first person I talked to and gave the key phrase to, was the one I was looking for. The man wanted me to go get a royal guard’s sword. I had the feeling he meant beat them up for it or something, but I got one quite politely after proving who I was. Once back at the inn, I was given a drink.
I came to my senses in a very strange place I did not recognize. The man who had given me the drink was there, leaning against the wall rather smugly. It’s a good thing magic disguises really hide your true form, for I was definitely taller and endowed much differently. Anyone picking me up, should have noticed that immediately. Then, I finally learned his name was Polomiir and I was on Errinore Isle. The Veiled Heritance had taken the entire place over. Wonderful!
Someone decided I should be trained to be an officer. All the better for what I needed to do. I had to complete three trials in order to qualify. The first one was for endurance, conducted by Verustante, which was a race around the island from beacon to beacon, reaching her before time was up. I actually lost the first time thanks to my lack of grace and maybe somewhat due to the pesky flying demons, present in the place. She sent me off to see Ohmonir for a good ole mental test. I messed up a riddle here, too. I had to pick one of a dozen objects or so that answered the riddle with the first being confusing enough, I picked incorrectly. The next two I sorted out in quick order to get it over with. Then I was off to Alandare for a strength test. Actually, it was a fight and for me, no strength was involved. My Clannfear beat on the poor sap while I brought lightning down on him. Needless to say, the poor fellow did not seem to know how to handle that kind of onslaught.
Now that I had passed the three tests, I got to go hear the Veiled Queen. She only showed herself on the isle as a magical projection. This was definitely a good way to stay veiled even from your followers, let alone those outside, as to who you really are. My disguise, on the other hand, seemed to have been compromised because as I got inside the keep, the alarm sounded. Fine, it was time to dance with these little Veiled Heritance people with some good ole lightning. Everyone in the place wanted to attack me, so I killed them all. How else was I going to get back out? In the end, I figured out I had killed three of their leaders.
Once off the island, I returned to Skywatch, which was actually in sight from Errinore Island, and reported back to Razum-Dar. All our information led to Estre being the Veiled Queen, meaning Queen Ayrenn was right in the lair of her enemy at the Manse. Of course, the Queen did not believe us, to the point of stating Estre had no idea how to do magic. Estre promptly proved otherwise by suddenly disappearing from where she was standing, mere feet from the Queen.
The next thing to check out was in Dawnbreak. It seemed other information pulled up by Razum-Dar and his crew showed that Canonreeve Sinyon was also Veiled Heritance. While I was off doing that, Urcelmo would be leading his forces to push through to Firsthold.
Outside Skywatch I meet Egranor. Razum-Dar had sent him to tell me of four Veiled Heritance operatives of high level, I was to take care of. These leaders were: Karulae the rapid action planner, Calanyese the insider, at the Fighter’s Guild, Helonel the racial purity advisor (Gag me on his ideas of purity. I’ll take diversity thank you,) and Ariannas. Ariannas was pretty unknown, except for being very close friends to Estre.
Everything so far was leading us to believe Estre was amassing an army, along with high level friends, in order to make a serious push at becoming the queen. This begged the question of whether her husband, Prince Naemon, even had a clue about all this.
I managed to hunt out the four leaders I was assigned to find. I found Calanyese hiding out in the far north and had to jump to protect myself. I removed her badge from her lifeless body. Next I found Kaulae fishing. I did not give this one the chance to run off and left him dead after taking his badge. Helonel was found already dead and not for long ago from what I could tell. Whoever killed him did not care about his identifying items, so I was able to find his badge as proof.
It was Arianas that managed to get away. She had holed up in the College of Aldmeri Propriety where she had Tanion overseeing the instruction of Bosmer and Khajiit. I put an end to their way of teaching. I do not agree that any race is inferior to another and can’t stand the idea that any should be treated that way. I found proof of what Arianas was doing and then began to clean up the Veiled Heritance running the place. They were actually beating the ones that did not learn fast enough. They were trying to convince Bosmer to defy the Green Pact. When I was done, the Bosmer and Khajiit there all knew that this Altmer did not agree with racism or this twisted idea of how they fit into the Dominion.
I finally made my way to Dawnbreak to deal with Canonreeve Sinyon. I found him just outside of town as if he was waiting for me. He was known to be on Estre’s side, but he stood there, dejected, admitting he had made a very bad decision. It took Estre destroying the city with daedras and elementals for him to realize this. She proved here, her worship of Mehranes Dagon, which was yet another reason to kill her when I actually would see her again.
I worked with Captain Landare to help clear up the city and save some patrols overrun by the daedras and elementals. Once this was accomplished, I received another report that they knew of a portal in a cave nearby. The captain was already there.
Inside the cave, I talked with the captain. The portal was being controlled by two dremoras. This sounded like fun. I hated dremora with a passion. They were not even looking my way when I entered. I definitely did not ring the doorbell other than zapping one of them with lightning upon seeing them and sending my pets in for the fight. They did not last long and the portal was easily closed, without their presence to maintain it.
Dawnbreak was only a distraction. Estre was after Firsthold, where I knew forces led by Battlereeve Urselmo were heading. I made haste to the city to see what I would find of it and the forces of the Queen.
At the gate I learned that Urselmo was at the Mages Guild. I found little to fight on the way there, fortunately, though a few dremoras learned how I felt about them. I found him guarding the entrance with a couple of his troops. Inside, the mages were working on a way to get through Estre’s wards so we could get her out of the inner castle.
Sinien’s idea for breaking this barrier had the mages continuing the ritual safely in the guild hall while I used a talisman on the two wards. Plenty more dremoras met their demise in the process of me getting to the wards. Once at a ward, it only took a few seconds for the talisman to do its work. This would have gone faster if Estre had not put them on opposite sides of the city. At least it wasn’t the furthest distance one could go within the walls.
Then I found Razum-Dar to discuss what we had to do next. It turned out now we had three portals to enter and sigil stones to destroy. Let me correct myself. I HAD to go in the portals to destroy the sigil stones. I don’t scare easily, but I really did not want to go through portals leading to the Refuge of Dread. As expected, when I entered the first one, it was hot, dry and included lava. There were also fire elementals, right at home. Daedras were included, of course, and they probably can survive anywhere.
All three portals had the same basic setup, but some required getting past a ward and others had some fun things to fight. If the entrance to the sigil had a ward, four fires had to be lit in a timely manner before one could pass through. Mostly though, I had to kill things. Once I destroyed the stone, I was thankfully and immediately deposited back in Firsthold where the portal had been. One portal was outside the castle and two were on the far ends of the outer court.
The final portal led to Estre. Razum-Dar and I charged in to find her apparently alone. However, as the fight proceeded, fire elementals appeared. While they were alive, Estre could not be harmed. Razum-Dar kept her distracted, while I made sure to destroy these elementals. During the time while she could not summon new ones, I made sure she felt my storm calling powers. Eventually, we ended her blight on Tamriel, saving Auridon from her wicked ways. The Veiled Heritance had managed to spread beyond Auridon, but at least this primary figurehead of it was no more.
I could have taken a vacation at this point, but it was reported that Elden Root needed some help. Considering I did so well helping Auridon, I was thinking the Queen wanted me to go help there. After all, we can’t have the Aldmeri Dominion falling apart before it even really gets cohesive, now can we. Not that I cared as much as an Altmer should, as I had found my true home in Skyrim with the Ebonheart Pact. I was only having fun here, thanks to Cadwell and his zany ideas.
About the Author
Althea "Briseadh" Damgaard
Althea joined Gaiscioch back in October of 2009 and has been here ever since with only a few month hiatus between Warhammer and Rift. As soon as she knew they were in Rift, she jumped ship to Faeblight and has followed them onward through every chapter since with a few side games thrown in for spice.
She has been an avid player of RPG style games since 1980 when she first played Dungeons and Dragons. Since then she has created her own tabletop gaming world used with various rule sets as D&D progressed. Once she could get online she played MUDs. Her MMO days started with Everquest and have moved through over a dozen games with some lasting only a month's time in her life and others going for years. She has tested several games from the perspective of a disabled gamer with hand issues due to her multiple sclerosis.
When not writing about or playing games, she can be found writing novels, reading and doing various art projects. She also writes items based on her faith and is working on publishing a novel. She also does editing for a gaming developer.