Daggerfall and Environs in the Doldrums of
the 3rd Era
Scene 1: In The Adventurer's suite at the
Dead Daedra Inn.
Enter Prologue, the Adventurer, and Ortho.
Ortho climbs into bed.
Prologue: Thank you for allowing us the
time to change the meager set, while our bard sang that old
favorite, "Hail and Farewell." Now then, imagine,
if you will, the luxuriant and langorous suite of that Dark
Elven rogue, the Adventurer, at the Dead Daedra Inn. The time
is shortly after the last scene, which if you've forgotten,
ended with our hero and his partner-in-crime, Nephron, making
some arrangements to swindle from the mages, priests, and
armorers. All are interested in getting their hands on a lode
of Fools' Ebony, a miraculous burning mineral, and the priests
and mages each consider the Adventurer their ally. The Armorers
know better and have assigned one of their apprentices, Ortho,
to watch the Adventurer's movements. Now, as Ortho slumbers,
the Adventurer has his first moment of peace in days. I should
mention that in the interest of common decency, this scene
has been abbreviated from the original by order of the Guild
of Playwrites, Actors, and Dramatists. It now contains little
material of relevance. A full copy may be obtained from the
playwrite after the show for a mere 50 g.p. copying fee. Now
is the time for poor Prologue to shuffle away.
(Exit Prologue) (The Adventurer begins to
(Tap-tap at the door. Adventurer jumps, startled)
(Snore from Ortho)
Adventurer: Who's there? I'm coming!
(Opens door - carefully) (Enter Contessa)
Adventurer: Er, well ... er ... Come In!
(The Adventuer steps back, tripping over his
trousers around his ankles ...)
Contessa: So sorry to surprise you, but
I thought that we might find something in common ... Oh! You
poor man, you have a wound! Here, let me fix that bandage
... it looks very fresh.
(Fixing bandage, properly this time)
Adventurer: Well, I ... just opened it
up again. Evening exercises, calisthenics, so on...
Contessa: How did you get this cut - if
you do not mind me asking?
Adventurer: No, not at all. I was ... in
a fight, earlier. These three crazy people jumped me.
Contessa: Really? This cloth looks like
part of a Mage's robe.
Adventurer: Well, yes, two of them were
Contessa: Oh My! You must have been very
good, to defeat them.
Adventurer: Oh, ah, well, I've been in
one or two fights. Not to be rude, but who are you?
Contessa: Oh, I am so sorry, I quite forgot
the proper introductions. I am the Contessa Aveet Videspreed
-- call me Ave. From the Court at Daggerfall.
Adventurer (aside): By Oblivion, what now?
Contessa: Here, help me off with this robe,
these inn rooms are always ... so hot. And let me check that
bandage again, poor man. Ooh, you are wearing an ebony belt
of stamina, and bracers of strength. Ooh, a bracelet of endurance.
This is my lucky night.
Adventurer (aside): Help.
Contessa: Here, let me help you off with
that old shirt - got to check you for any more cuts - they
can go bad so easily, you know.
Adventurer (aside): Well, its not the Armorers
this time. Maybe my luck has turned.
Contessa: Well, everything seems all right...very
all right, in fact...
Adventurer: Er...well, Ave - tell me about
... er ... yourself.
Contessa: If you want - just for a bit
Adventurer: Here, have some wine ...
Prologue: Here our worthy playwrite's speech
has been heavily edited by the Guild of Playwrites, Actors,
and Dramatists. I will endeavor to fill in those removed passages.
I should first mention that the Contessa is not meant to be
a relative of any noble currently in Castle Daggerfall. The
Contessa Aveet regales the Adventurer with tales of the peculiar
and hearty members of her royal family. She has many brothers
and sisters. They are all very -- close.
Contessa: I think I must have been a bastard.
I was the only one with red hair, and an affinity for magicka.
Everyone else tried to hide this skill of mine. I remember
one spanking very well ...
Prologue: The Contessa relates further
differences between her siblings.
Contessa: While my sisters were learning
to curtsey in ten different modes, and my brothers were learning
flower-arranging, I used to sneak off into the woods or town.
I soon learnt how to get what I wanted, from just about anyone.
Just for example, there was this merchant who had three sons
Prologue: The Contessa goes into detail
about her training.
Contessa: I became quite good at the school
of illusion. You never noticed me, downstairs, did you?. I
also learned how to use some weapons. Let me tell you how
I learned hand-to-hand ...
Prologue: The Contessa relates an amusing
anecdote, and then continues.
Contessa: And on bad days, I used to dig
in my father's library. He had a marvelous collection of old
texts. I was fascinated by Old Dwarvish, managed to learn
it quite well, I think. Of course, no one has seen or spoken
to one in years and years. So its probably perfectly useless
knowledge. But I've always had an interest in collecting new
knowledge. At the Mages Guild, they taught me an old High
Elven tradition. You spread this potion all over your body...
Prologue: The Contessa relates her current
state of boredom.
Contessa: The life up at the Palace bores
me so. My sisters ...
Prologue: The Contessa's sisters are entertaining
Contessa: And my brothers are now studying
Advanced Floral Theory, so I come down here, do a little ...
er ... business. I keep all my relations supplied with their
favorite vices -- so I can blackmail the whole rotten lot.
Adventurer: But isn't it dangerous, down
here? Did I not hear that some young Contessa got killed,
Contessa: That little twit was my cousin,
and as far as I'm concerned, she got what she deserved. She
thought she could just borrow a maids dress, muss up her hair,
and pass for commoner. She was spotted the first minute she
left the Palace gates. Now, I use illusion, craft, guile --
and I carry weaponry. By the way, that was a neat scheme you
and Neph cooked up.
Adventurer: Well, lets change the subject,
can we? ... Just what do you carry? I can't see anything ...
like a weapon, I mean ...
Contessa: Here, let me show you ...
Adventurer: Oh my, those are nice ... knives...
Contessa: And there're more ...
Adventurer: Oh yes...
Contessa: But we don't need these silly
nasty weapons now, do we?
Adventurer: My, my -- now those are what
I call weapons ... Oh yes ... heavy duty, high class ones
too, my ...
Contessa: I think its time that we put
that ebony to the test ... to say nothing of your Mages Staff
Prologue: At this point, extensive material
has been removed. However, please remember that any scholar
who truly wishes to peruse this material can obtain a copy
for only 50 g.p. - hand-drawn illustrations are of course
extra. The Contessa, after a bit of fun, volunteers to be
a part of the Adventurer's party to find the fools' ebony
lode. I know, I know. It didn't make much sense in the original
draft either, if you want to know the truth.
Adventurer: Sure you want to go out there
in the wilds?
Contessa: Oh, yes. I am so bored here.
Well, not right here and now, but generally. And I can really
be of assistance. I'm pretty good with woods survival, knife
work, hand-to-hand ... and it gets cold out there at night,
even for big ebony-wearing men like you ...
Adventurer: All right, then. Do you know
where and why we are going?
Contessa: Oh, of course. It's all over
Daggerfall. Everyone is watching and waiting to see what happens.
There is even a lottery or two running ...
Adventurer: On what ..?
Contessa: Oh, your life.
Adventurer: Oh dear Oh dear! Oh my!
Contessa: Look, don't worry -- I know all
about the double-dealings with mages, priests, merchants,
those crude armorers. And I intend that we come out on top.
I love being on top. With the goods and the profits. I'll
have yet another vice to sell to my stupid relatives in their
Adventurer: But won't it be us two against
Contessa: Oh no. Most everyone is waiting
here in town to see what and who comes back. And I will have
a surprise arranged for our 'escorts' - Ortho included. Out
in the wilderness, they can be dealt with easily.
Adventurer: Tell me more.
Contessa: Certainly. But first ... lets
see how many uses you have left in that ebony. Mmm, your Mages'
Staff is in good shape ...
Prologue: Exactly. Sorry to interrupt again,
but we're going to have to stop this scene right here. After
a frenzied night comes the placid dawn, tripping onto the
sky like a budding rose. And then another day doth dawn, and
then another. Ten dawns and ten frenzied nights pass as our
wily Adventurer, the wanton Contessa, the clever and naughty
Nephron, the loutish Ortho, and an assemblage of randy armorers
and backsliding maidens take to the road. Imagine now that
we are in the wildy wilderness of High Rock near the Wrothgarian
(Enter Nephron and assorted lads and lasses)
Contessa: I do so love a bucolic frolic.
Adventurer: It's getting pretty wild now.
I guess the dangerous part is coming up tomorrow...?
Contessa: Yes, one last stop tonight, at
that old inn up here -- Minnie's Inn.
Adventurer: Minnie's Inn? Oh, those two
old scholars who gave it all up, came to run the inn out here.
they must get all of two customers a year.
Contessa: I think they like the solitude.
It gives them time to study. They know a lot about old Dwarvish
stuff - get them started on that, they will wear you ears
Adventurer: Er ... when does your surprise
happen? I should probably know.
Contessa: Don't fret, dear. At the Inn
tonight. Just sit back and enjoy the show.
Prologue: Time passes, the carts roll,
things happen in the backs of the carts. And there are strange
furtive movements unnoticed by all, on the high ridges around.
When next we see our players, they are at Minnie's Inn, home
of Minnie and Crunn, the philosopher- innkeeps. Imagine, if
you will, the rather dusty dining room of Minnie's Inn.
(Enter Minnie, Crunn, and Gurnsey) (Exit Prologue)
(Gurnsey goes to Orthos' table with more ale for him. She
sits down suddenly. She stares into Orthos' eyes, Ortho stares
into hers. Mouths drop open.)
Minnie: ... er ... Crunn ...
Crunn: ... yes ... Minnie ...
Minnie: ... I was thinking ...
Crunn: ... yes, you were thinking, Minnie
Minnie: ... er .... thinking ...
Crunn: ... yes ...so was I ....
Minnie: ... can't remember now ...
Crunn: ... yes, Minnie ... Minnie ...
Minnie: ... Yes ..?
Crunn: ... Shut up ...
Gurnsey and Ortho (Together): Moo ... oooh
Contessa: See, Adventurer, Ortho's fixed.
Adventurer: Is he?
Contessa: You just watch.
Adventurer: And what about the other armorers?
Contessa: Any minute now.
(Ortho and serving girl arise, approach Adventurers'
table. The floor shakes.)
Ortho: This Gurnsey. Ortho love Gurnsey,
Gurnsey: Gurnsey love Ortho ... moo ...
Ortho: We go get marry, we is.
Adventurer: Well, congratulations! And
that was a fine long speech, Ortho!
Ortho: We go raise piggies.
Gurnsey: Grows animals too, farmers be
(Exit Ortho and Gurnsey)
Adventurer: Extraordinary. Ave, I think
that you must have been up here before.
Contessa: Oh yes. I often come up here
to get away from the Palace and talk dwarves with Minnie and
Adventurer: You mean that these two ancient
... er, Scholar-InnKeeps can actually talk and about dwarves?
(All but Adventurer, Contessa, Minnie, and
Crunn fall asleep in their meat pies.)
Contessa: Oh yes, you must just be very
patient. But look over at our other escorts ...
Adventurer: By the Lady!
Contessa: Minnie was an Alchemist before
she met Crunn, and knows a lot of old forgotten Dwarvish potions.
Adventurer: But what do we do with the
Contessa: Wait ...
Contessa: Adventurer, meet Major Bloodnok,
head of my own ...private little bodyguard. He's been with
me since I was a mere girl. Served me very well, haven't you,
Major: We give our all, milady.
Adventurer: Pleased to meet you, Major.
Contessa: How are my other men?
Adventurer: (aside) Other men?
(Enter Other Men in Khajiit suits)
Major: All present and accounted for, milady.
Had a spot of bother with what looked like a party of Merchants
following you. But they are out of the picture now, down a
ravine. Only one thing.
Major: Me and my men, we've been noticing
sort of furtive movements, up on cliffs, on ridges -- always
just out of the corners of our eyes. And we keep getting this
feeling of being watched. Now, me and my men, we're the best
but there's something out there. Don't like it, not one bit.
Contessa: Oh Dear - and just when it was
getting to be fun.
Major: Its not anything human. Not Mages,
Armorers, Priests. And its not the usual werewolves, harpies,
orcs, daedra. Nothing like that, not at all.
Crunn: Where? ... oh ... Minnie ... you
mean ... up ... there ... here ...
Minnie: ... Dwarves, up there ...
Crunn: ... How exciting ... mmmm ...
Minnie: ... There, there, Crunn, calm down
... just dwarves ... I knew that one day they would ...
Crunn: ... Wake up ..?
Minnie: ... Come back ...
Crunn: ... But ... I didn't go anywhere
Minnie: ... The dwarves, Crunn ...
Crunn: ... Oooh ... Back ... So excited ...
Dwarves! ... oooh ...
Contessa: Well Major, is it possible?
Major: Anything's possible, especially
up here. Dwarves? I don't know. Me and my men, we'll get rid
of this lot. There's a good deep mine shaft out back.
(Exit All, but the Adventurer and Contessa)
Adventurer: Dwarves, Ave! Is that trouble?
I mean, they sort of own all the ebony down here, don't they?
Contessa: Maybe. I guess we just have to
push on, see what develops. I can try to talk to them, maybe?
Oh, and Adventurer, you'll have to drive the first cart. I'll
take old Nephron's. We'll leave the other here -- Spares for
Adventurer: What, no more bucolic frolics?
Contessa: Sorry, but we've got to get to
the site and out again before the weather goes bad.
Adventurer: Can't your Major and his men,
handle the carts?
Contessa: Oh, no. They will cover us from
all sides and make certain there are no surprises.
Adventurer: Oh well. All good things end,
Contessa: Not quite. If you have any charges
left in your bracelets of endurance, we can go upstairs and
see what develops.
Prologue: Well, I guess we all saw that
coming. Scene 3 takes place some time later at the site. Flanked
by the Major's men, the Adventurer and the Wanton Contessa
successfully follow the map of the dear, departed mages.
Imagine great veins of glistening ebonyesque
material piercing the surface of the ground, and a nice warm
fire of Fools Ebony where the Adventurer and the Contessa
sprawl. To the west are signs that the weather is turning
and the first major snowstorm of the year is coming. For some
time, they have been mining and the Adventurer is beginning
to feel the strain of actual labor.
Adventurer: I've got blisters on my hands
from shovelling that black rot, blisters on my rear from that
cart bench, and we are running out of ale. My bracelet is
running down and my fingers are getting frostbite.
Contessa: What, your bracelet is running
down? Oh, now that is serious.
(Enter Major, running)
Major: Dwarves! Milady, dwarves, dozens
of the little buggers caught my men! I'm sorry, milady.
(The Contessa jumps to her feet)
Contessa: Major, get out of here now. If
you get away, you can maybe help us later. I'll try to talk
(Exit Major) (Enter Dwarves)
Contessa: Hhjgys jjvvu klpss Jjqqx zzyzx.
Dwarves (Together): Jjpoo Kalagloo gashnoo
bibloo franoo Xxnadoo
Contessa: Jnik? Balpo?
Dwarves (Together) :Gabloo! Wazzikoo! Eppapupu!
Contessa: Glooky, glooky, glooky.
Adventurer: Ave, whats going on?
Contessa: Relax. I think I've impressed
them by talking their language. I don't understand everything,
but it seems that they have only just 'woken up' or something.
And that they will not let us take any of this Fool's Ebony
-- it's somehow related to the real stuff or something. And
it really belongs to the Lords of Oblivion -- the Dwarves
are just care or something.
Adventurer: Very interesting. Now, what
Contessa: I made a deal with them the only
way I could see. I told them about Minnie and Crunn, how those
two old ones know lots of dwarven tales and legends. The dwarves
tells me that, having just 'woken up' or something, they want
three things -- ale, women, and us to leave the Fools' Ebony
Adventurer: Ah, flog my log.
Contessa: Well, I told them about all the
ale down at Minnie's Inn. And about the 2 redheads there.
They are going there, leaving right now. We may take one empty
cart, 2 horses. And they will keep us guarded all the way
there. They also said that they will -- I don't know how --
destroy all the Fool's Ebony here. It shouldn't be on the
surface like this, they say. (aside) Dwarvish is a remarkably
Adventurer: By the great roaring buttocks
of Sheogorath! All these blisters and backache for nothing!
Ah well. At least we are still alive. For now ...
(Exeunt) (Enter Prologue)
Prologue: Farnoo Lickety Kanoo Gadfloo.
Oh, I'm terribly sorry. As Scene 4 begins, we are back at
Minnie's Inn, where the dwarves appear to be on holiday.
(Enter the Adventurer, the Wanton Contessa,
Minnie, Crunn, and Dwarves)
Minnie: ... ga ... sszx ... spnoo? ...
Crunn: ... glurky ...
Dwarves (Together): Jotcha potchka lazzo
lanni joopy hoopy qui me amat, amat et canem meam
Adventurer: Ave, any ideas? I can't seem
to work my magical items. And when the ale runs out ...
Contessa: Your ebony material is useless
against them. Dwarves fashion the ebony, so I guess they can
suppress it or something. Don't worry - just think, these
dwarves have been asleep or something for hundreds of years.
And Minnie has a huge stock of ale. Not many customers come
this way, and she knows how to salt the ale just right to
keep from spoiling for decades.
Adventurer: Oh, that's why my tongue always
looks like a chunk of leather after a pint or two.
Contessa: Dwarves apparently love ale.
I expect them all to pass out in an hour or so.
(Dwarves fall into comas)
Contessa: If not sooner. Come on, Adventurer.
Grab a sack and start collecting! When the dwarves wake up,
they'll finish the ale, and then us.
(The Wanton Contessa and Adventurer pillage
Adventurer: South, as fast as our horses
will take us in this weather.
Contessa: If we make enough distance before
they wake up, we'll be all right - I don't think that they
will leave their precious mountains. I hope not.
Prologue: The wailing wintery wind whirls
wickedly, wafts whipping, wading waist-high, oh never mind.
The Adventurer and the Contessa get lost in the snow storm.
Several days later, we find them desperate for warmth and
Adventurer: The horses have had it. They
can't go another step and its going to snow again. No ale
left, and just one loaf.
Contessa: It will have to do.
(Suddenly, a party of giants leaps on our
hero and heroine. But after some quick work with Bracers of
Firestorm, really dead giants lie around in heaps)
Adventurer: Anything left, Ave?
Contessa: No, no more fire anything - just
Adventurer: Same here, just a common shortsword.
Curse Sheogorath for those dwarves! Those oafs chewed up our
horses! Do you think the Major made it out?
Contessa: If anyone can, it's him. Guess
we'll find out in town. Interesting thought just occured to
me. Don't giants hunt in several groups? Is that more I hear?
(sound of grumbling and gargling offstage)
Adventurer: Yes, there are more giants
out there. Quick, Ave. Help me with this one.
(The Adventurer starts to disembowel a giant's
Contessa: What on Tamriel are you doing?
This is not the time for studying anatomy!
Adventurer: Don't argue, climb inside!
Contessa: Poppydash and Baldercock! Inside
that smelly dead giant? My dear Adventurer, I'm a Lady.
Adventurer: It's our only hope! The giant
smell will hide our scent, and live giants never touch dead
(The Adventurer and the Contessa climb inside
the steaming giant's body)
Adventurer: Here, help me pull the skin
shut - and try not to throw up. Don't make a sound.
Prologue: A few hour pass.
(Exit Prologue) (The Adventurer and the Wanton
Contessa poke their heads out of the giant's belly.)
Adventurer: They've all left, but it's
snowing hard. Definitely getting real cold. We better stay
Contessa: It indeed is warm.
Adventurer: It will keep us warm, safe
from the storm and giants, for a day or so if we can stand
the smell. Here, want some bread?
(The Contessa falls victim to nausea)
Prologue: For this, the last scene of the
play, please forgive us, but we need to change the set. Remove
the "giant corpses" and whatnot. Please be patient
while our bard performs the timeless classic "Whither
(Bard plays "Whither Goest Thou?"
If the scenarists take too long, he also plays "For Further
Prologue: Ah, here we are, back at the
Dead Daedra Inn. The Contessa and the Adventurer made it,
after all. They had to pay three times the normal rate, for
they were very dirty and stinky. Now poor Prologue will bid
you farewell, goodly people.
Contessa: Thank the Gods for hot water
and soap! I thought I would smell like a giant forever.
Adventurer: Me too. Where did you go while
I was bathing? And why no mages, priests, armorers, or merchants
outside yelling for our blood?
Contessa: I took a quick trip to the Palace.
I've fixed it so some cousins have told the armorers and merchants
that we don't have cartloads of the Fools' Ebony.
Adventurer: Pity that that's actually true.
Contessa: But at least no one's interested
in us anymore. Seems that some priests turned up dead in an
old temple, up on Edward's Mountain. They were found with
some girl, all dead from 'bad green powder' or something.
And some old mages named Shub have gone missing ...
Adventurer: Now then, what did you stuff
in those sacks thats so important?
Contessa: Here, dump them out, take a look.
Adventurer: By the Gods, just look at that!
Contessa: Yes, those dwarves were just
loaded with ebony. Look. Rings, torcs, bracers, belts, helms
All solid old ebony.
Adventurer: And this stuff feels just loaded
with magicka. Why, I bet that this ring alone has a thousand
uses... whatever it does.
Contessa: Ooh! Look! Bracers of Extreme
Endurance and a Belt of Strength! Put them on, Adventurer,
Adventurer (aside): Help!
Epilogue: As I feared, all the loose threads
of the play were ended by wholesale slaughter. More of the
adventures of the Adventurer will follow, unless, of course,
they don't. We thank you for your tempered patience. Don't
forget to tip your worthy wenches on your way out this evening,
and enjoy our bard's rendition of the Khajiiti classic, "It's
A Matter of Luck." Goodnight.
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