C.O.T.W Chapter 119: Solar Eclipse



Inigo smiled to himself as he surveyed the dead spiders. He turned, and with one last look over his shoulder, he followed Hasir and

the Nords deeper into the cave. He watched as they felled several bandits as they moved through the next large chamber. Inigo's

eyes went wide as, a bit further on, he, the argonian and the Nords saw a man with white skin dressed in armor the color of snow

guarding what looked like a white mushroom.


Hasir told the group to stay put as he feared this might be a trap of some kind. He approached the man, tail drooping behind him.

"Hello, My name's Hasir." He said, grinning at the white elf. The white elf didn't look at him but contiued guarding his 'prize,' arms

folded. Hasir gulped and tried again. Again, the man did not respond. He could feel his anger rising like a volcano ready to erupt.

"Look, you moron, You can play the stoic card all you want, but, I will get answers one way," He said, unsheathing his flame whip,

"or another."


The man turned an saw an angry argonian standing next to him.

"I'm so sorry about that. I was, er, never mind. Welcome to the chapel of Auriel." He said, bowing slightly


Hasir sheathed the whip and look about him with a scowl on his face.

"The chapel of Auriel? This looks more like a cavern unless that mushroom-looking this is the chapel." The argonian eyed the white

elf while scoffing at the 'chapel.' "What are you supossed to be? You look like something the throat of the world spit up, well... the

top part of it anyway."


The man stepped back in shock as if shot by a stray arrow.

"My word. What a rude one your are. My name is Arch-curate Gelebor. My brother and I are the the last snow elves left on Tamriel,

this, "He said, gesturing to the white mushroom-looking thing is one of the portals that all pilgrims to the Chapel must pass through,

of which their are five total, to gain access to the inner sanctum and gain favor from Auriel himself." Gelebor looked at Hasir blankly

for amoment before regaining his train of thought, "There we more of us, but, the other falmer were driven mad by a foul curse put

upon them by my brother when he join Molag Bal." He read Hasir's shocked expression as plainly as an open book, "Yes, falmer. It is

the Tamrielic name the gods gave us. 'Snow elves' is just a name we use for the Tamrielite who is not well-versed in Elnohfey. 


The argonian screwed his face up and asked why his brother cursed his own race. Gelebor smiled.

"When Molag Bal promised my brother dominion over Akatosh, Vyrthur went mad with power. I thought he was going to use the

power the Bal bestowed upon him for good but, instead, he used it to destroy the inner sanctum and curse most of over race with

ulginess and blindness. I was clever enough to get away. I came to this cave to guard one of the wayshrines and to warn anyone

foolish enough to attempt the face him to see the error of their ways and wait for someone worthy enough to end his reign of



Gelebor turned to the mushroom and summoned a tiny sun that flew to the golden sun structure that Hasir hadn't noticed before.

The ground shook as the white stone hexagonal structure rose from the ground. Hasir approached it and saw a shimmering portal

dominated the side directing across from him and a pedestal in the center with a jug sitting upon it. He closed a claw around the

white handle and saw the portal glow a bit brighter.


Hasir put the jug into his bag and was about to step through the portal when he heard Gelebor's voice.

"You must undertake this journey alone. As I said, this is a pilrimage and as such only one may walk that path. On your journey, you

will no doubt, run into my other snow elf brethren, alas, they have been felled by Vyrthur and as such will only parrot the responses

they have done in life and nothing more. They will appear as cyan imprints of what they once were." Gelebor looked at Hasir and

shook his head, "I am sorry, but you companions will have to go back the way they came."


Inigo's ears and tail drooped as he heard this. He knew what the snow elf said was right.

Come on guys, let's go back to Jorrvaskr and await Hasir there." As he walked back through the cave with the companions, he

caught one last glimpse of Hasir stepping through the portal. The khajiit wished his friend good luck and the exited the mouth of the

cave and walked back to Whiterun.


Hasir looked back as the portal decreased in size and wondered if his friend made it back to Whiterun in one piece. A voice in

his head reassuring him they would be fine. He walked through the darkened cavern, feeling the rough surface of the walls as he

manuvered his way along them. He saw a strange creature with deer-like qualities except for a pattern of aquamarine spaced

intermittently throughout its coat. He decided to follow this creature to see where it led him.


Hasir followed the deer, using the scant light it gave off to get his bearings as he followed it. He hid behind every corner that he

came across as the deer would periodically like behind to see if some unseen predator wasn't on her tail. The deer, seeing no threat,

bounded forward again, through a large unoccupied chamber with a curtain of water dominated the northern wall. Hasir croached the

whole way as to not be spotted, accidentally, by the deer. 


The deer moved on, having her fill over water and continued through a small chamber with blue crystals dominating one side of the

chamber and came of into a chamberr with a pathway running alongside the eastern wall that sloped downward and a small ramp

leading to a small island in a center pool of water. Hasir folowed the glowing blue-green spotted dear along the path leading to the

central island. He was grateful to have the deer as a guide because, without her, he would surely plummet into the deep water that

surrounded the rocky island.


The strange deer bounced away as Hasir started ascending the second thin pathway that lead to a shrine like the one that Gelebor

showed Hasir in Darkfall Cave.


He reached the white-stone shrine and saw what Gelebor called a 'cyan imprint.' The snow elf, or mere imprint of one, probably

thought he was still in an intact Chapel of Auriel; back when there were actual pigrimages to the chapel. Now, though, it was but a

shadow of its former self and Hasir knew that he was only going to get the respones at verbatim that the worshipping Auriel acolytes

got when they came to the chapel when it was whole and not just bare bones.


Hasir approached the long dead snow elf who just stared straight through him, completely unaware of where he was nor that an

argonian was standing directly in front of him.

"Greetings. Welcome to the chapel of Auriel. Pilgrims who wish to walk this path are required the fill the initiate's ewer at five shrines

found her and across the land beyond. If you wish to walk this particular path, fill the ewer with the liquid found in the shrine."


Hasir did as the late snow elf requested. He sank the pitcher into the sacred water and, no sooner did he do that than a portal had

appeared. Hasir put the ewer into his bag, fitting it with a lid that the late falmer had given him and stepped through the portal.


He emerged into a cavern with a icy path spiraling downard with a huge pit in the center. He hugged the corner all the way down

until he was on solid ground. Hasir let out a gasp as he beheld the gorgeous view in front of him. It looked like a piiece of Aetherius

had detached, fell to Tamriel and manifested itself as this beautiful snowy landscape with Falmer architecture scattered everywhere. 


He ripped his mind away from this beautiful site when he realized that he had to press on with finding the other four shrines. Hasir

combed the entire area in front of him and stumbled upon a shrine he'd missed earlier. He met the same dead guardian and filled the



He retraced his steps back down the slope he'd just climbed, just in case he'd missed a shrine. He passed under a crumbling arch to

a giant frozen lake with an island of ice in the middle of it. He scanned the area and saw another shrine just passed the eastern bank

of the lake. Tail swaying behind him, he headed in that direction.


He walked up to the shrine, smiling at the guardian,

"Hi. My name's Hasir, what's yours?" The guardian just stared blankly through him. Hasir's eyes narrowed, "I was just asking, not

need to be ryude." He mumbled as removed the lid from the ewer and filled it. 


Hasir replaced the lid on the ewer and went back to where the frozen lake was and took the path leading off to the right and found

another shrine. He did not engage in coversation this time as he knew it was not worth it. In silence, he plunged the ewer into the

water, filling the ewer a bit more. 


He looked around him while muttering to himself.

"Three shrines down, two to go. Question is, where are those last shrines?"


He started walking toward a mountain range that rose up to the east. He ascended the snowy slope and found another shrine. He

ignored the guardian, removed the lid from the ewer and filled it. He smiled as he replaced the lid. He started walking back, a bit lost

as to where the last shrine was when he saw a cave like a gaping monster's maw with icy drink flowing into it. 


Hasir walked in that direction and disappeared into the cave. Once inside, he marveled at the icy walls and cieling of the cavern. His

smile faded, however, as he saw numerous woven barricades lining the snowy path. He looked up and saw them dominating the

many levels of the cave as well.

"There must've been one hell of a battle long ago. I wonder why the barricades weren't taken down in the aftermath? Oh well, only

Hircine and Kynareth know where those former combatants are now." He srugged as he walked onward into the icy cavern.


Hasir spiraled up the icy path in the cavern, dispatching the cursed flamer as he went with his flame whip. He went through a series

of icy tunnels and came into a new chamber with bridges interlacing each other like a spider web. He lashed every which way as, left

and right, the falmer fell over the crudely woven bridges like boards. Within minutes, the Argonian carved a bloody swath through

the falmer and exited another area of the Forgotten Vale. 


He looked around, and seeing a golden sun far off in the distance, navigated this new area of the Vale and ascended the mountain

along the edgo of the area. The last two shrines were not that far apart. as the Argonian had hoped. He saw the white-stone exterior

of one of the shrines, entered it and filled the ewer. He trudged through the snow to the other shrine and dipped the pitcher into the

water if it was an ivory swimmer. 


Hasir went to go back when the tell-tale sound of stars twinkling erupted from behind him. He turned around and saw a shimmering

image of an ornate greystone building with icicles hanging from the arches spanning its many windows like pointy swords adorning a

wall in Jorrvaskr. He swallowed hard and stepped through the portal.


The argonian gazed with awe at the building he saw in the portal. Hasir croosed a stone bridge and ascended the stairs. He passed

under the stone arch, descended some steps and saw a statue of the Elvish iteration of Akatosh, the dragon god of time and spiral

staircases ascending up to a second floor landing. The argonian blanked the statue and ascended the stairs. He saw a basin with

three channels carved into the stone as if they were fingers strentching forth from a small raised sun. The channels ended as they

encircled another hollowed out basin carved into the earth. 


He poured the water out of the ewer into the basin like a waterfall into a lake. Hasir gasped audibly as the water spilled over the

edges of the basin and filled each channel in equal measure. It flowed around the path that encircled the round mark near the door

and poured into it like tributaries empty into an ocean.


When the thirst for drink had been satiated, Hasir went to the golden doors and pushed. He was relieved to see that the doors

accepted him like an old friend after a long jounrey. He shivered as cold air permeated the area. He crossed the chilly landscape,

trying to discern a claer path though the multitude of frozen statues until he came to another door. He pushed it open and saw a

black-furred khajjit sitting on one of the icicle strewn beds staring at him and smiling.


The khajiit's red eyes cut through the chilly atmosphere like a fiery shard of red mountain melting a glacier resting on its surface.

Hasir felt the effect as well, feeling cold as one of the frozen creatures outside.

"What are you doing here?" He said pointing an accusatory finger at the khajiit. "If I didn't know better, I'd sau you were after

something. Well? Out with it!"


The black khajiit leapt off the bed, sirmed while slow clapping and strode toward the Argonian.

"Very perceptive. Yes, As a matter of fact, that is precisely why I'm here." The khajiit eyed the Argonian curiously, "Have you ever

heard of an artifact know as Auriel's Bow?" The argonian looked nonplused. "Such a pity that you havent't." He said, his face falling,

"It is said that this particular bow can blot out the sun." Hasir opened his mouth to argue but the khajiit shot him a 'shut up, I am

talking' look. "That's not all. this bow can also conjure arrows that not only do the thing I mentioned previously but can also conjure

arrows that can cause brilliant sunflares to blossom forth forth from the daisy that is the sun and cook anything it comes in contact

with to a crisp. If I were to acquire such a bow, my master will reign dominion of the land of mortals. Not only that, but, his minions

need not fear the tyranny of the sun ever again once I blot it out of the sky."


The argonian narrowed his eyes at the black khajjit while unsheathing his flame whip. His eyes became even narrower and a snarl

escaped his scaly lips as he heard the Doomstrider laugh with mirth.

"I wouldn't do that if I were you, little hatchling. One errant slip of the wrist will send this whole place up in flames. Fire and ice don't

necessarily mix you know."


Hasir did not care about the Doomstrider's rather blunt observation. He would have burnt the hole place down if it meant a quick end

to Molag Bal's most 'loyal' servant. He thought about this and, admitting that the Doomstrider was right, sheathed the whip. The

doomstrider grinned evilly and disappeared in black smoke that flowed from the room before squeezing between the cracks between

the rocks in the wall in the neighboring corridor.


Hasir growled softly to himself and went into the neighboring corridor that opened out into yet another chamber that was riddled

with ice and icicles. He scrambled down an icy shelf to a sub-terranian chamber with more icy statues, though of what, he could not

be sure. He saw the black smoke zig-zagging between the frozen satues, melting their icy prison.


He saw the black smoke disappear beneath a pair of rocks the color of a solid spirit. the Argonian unsheathed his twin dragobone

axes and got ready for a fight. A falmer ran at his, raised its sword and prepared to strike as Hasir's axe severed the fallen elf's head

from its body. The argonian saw the two falmer converging him on both sides, crouched down, arms overlapping one another in a

cross-like pattern and threw his two axes to his left and right.


The axes slammed into the falmer like metal fists and propelled them backward. Their lifeless bodies flew in an arc through the air

and slammed into the wall which, once icy, now resembled a reddened work of art. The argonian crossed the room to the bloody

patches on the walls to his left and right where the falmer hung like grotesque dolls with an axe protruding from thei necks. Hasir

placed his foot on one of the falmer's chests and pulled. The axe came away easily, Hasir sheated it and did the same with the other

falmer. He winced as the carved a bloody path on the ice as the slid downward.


Two more falmer ran at him, he dispatched the with well thought-out throws of his axes. When he'd sheathed them, he exited the

room onto what looked like a windswept courtyard that had long since frozen over. He looked skyward as he saw the Doomstrider

standing near a snow elf vampire that he guessed was Gelebor's brother.


The doomstrider spotted the Argonian standing below him and smriked darkly,

"You arrived, good." He gestured to the vampiric elf, "I would leave you with the elf... but, I wouldn't miss a chance to see my enemy

flatten like a pancaake." He said, laughing mercilessly. 


Hasir gasped as he turned into smoked and flowed towards the elf. The smoked traveled up his nasal passage and consumed his

already rotting brain.

"Wait. I thought when you said you 'wanted to watch' you meant watching from the sidelines not intering with the game. Stop being

a coward and face me like the Alfiq you are." He shouted at the elvish Doomstrider.


Hasir dodged out of the way as the possessed elf shot a bluish-black projection projectile that burned the bit of stone patio where the

Argonian had been moments before. Vyrthur's eyes grew bright as two untarnished rubies.

"You foolish Argonian. You'll never stop Molag Bal." The elvish puppet sneered as a bluish-black lightning storm fell from above as

Hasir dodged the lightning, cringing as the otherworldly lightning burnt a section of the pillar.


The Argonian was blasted of off his feet by a well-placed fireball spell. and held in place on the pillar opposite the raised balcony by

the vampire elf's telekinetic ability. Hasir struggled with his invisble bonds as they tightened slowly as iron bars around his chest. The

elf's feline battery conjured bluish-black flames.


Hasir scrreamed as white hot waves of pain radiated outward like an invisible wave of hatred. The argonian's scream mingled with

the near-since as white-hot knives buried themselves in his flesh. He looked down as he saw the flames slowly traveling upward as

though his body was a vertical road. He tried to summon the strength to call upon his flame whip but knew it was useless.


The doomstrider controlled elf's hand closed into a fist while his eyes burned with red-hot fire. Hasir know the end was near as the

flames quickened their pace.

"Such a pity." Said the elf, "I guess your foolish attempts at stopping my master will be a barren tree wanting for fruit but getting

none." He said, smirking as he watched the ill-fated Argonian struggle.


Hasir fought hard to subdue the flames threatening to overwhelm him.

"Fuck you." He sanrled, "Tell your master he can eat shit!" He spat back as the fires of oblivion leapt to life in his hands.


He brought his hands together and flung a huge sun at the wide-eyed elf. He got blasted of his feet as Hasir fell to the ground,

gasping for air. He slowly advanced up the steps while unsheaathing his flame whip and, reaching the top, lashed out at the snow elf.

It coiled about his neck like a fiery snake.

"What'sss a matter, efl? lizard got your tongue?" He hissed as he looked into Vyrthur's widened eyes


He tugged hard at the flaming whip and the elf turned black as the night sky and crumpled to the ground. Black smoke issued from

the charbroiled elf's mouth and reformed on the bottom step. The doomstrider glanced over the railing as a second white mushroom

grew from the snowy ground. His red eyes followed a snow elf who walked toward the mushroom.


Yellow sparks that looked like rays from the sun erupted outward as a small tree-sized stone dias rose out of the ground. Upon the

dias, Hasir saw, was a brillant golden bow. The argonian's mouth fell open as he beheld the bow and advanced towards it. The black

khajiit snarled, leapt over the railing and ran toward the bow. The Argonian's eyes went wide as golf balls as he was sent spiraling

through the air to land with a loud THUD on the snowy balcony. 


Hasir snarled as he got to his feet and saw the Doomstrider close his claw around the golden bow. He gasped as the bow turned

black as night. Two quivers, one gold as a septim and the other, a grey quiver with ruby eyes that blinked out from a vampiric head.

The doomstrider grabbed the sun-drenched quiver.

"You stupid Argonian." He snarled, "you have been a thorned in my side of too long. It is about time for you to get your just desserts

for meddling in affairs to don't concern you."


He fired at the golden circle in the sky and several long lightning bolts crashed around the Argonian like meteors. He yelped in fright

and lunged at the khajiit. The Khajiit raised an eyebrow as three portals appeared on the white stone behind him. 

"You may have won the battle Argonian but You will not win the war. You can try but in the end, you will be snuffed out like a candle

in the wind like the other Tamrielians."


He laughed to himself as he stepped into a portal that bore the image of a castle that looked as if it was carved out of the the rock of

Oblivion itself. Hasir walked up to this image and gaped at it. This must've been the castle that he'd heard about. It had an

otherworldly look to it. He gasped as he saw, on the docks in front of the eery castle, heavily clad rotting corpses astride enormous

black skeletal horses. Hasir thought about the blue khajiit amid his terror and thought about how he would react. The image of the

castle, the draugr and the dreadful horses were absorbed by the stone before Hasir had gotten a good look at them. 


Hasir turned from the empty space and turned to the new shimmering portal that sported an image of a temple that looked like a

black portal casing surrounded by numerous spikes and odd protuberances. He took a deep breath.

"Here we go. Time to lock horns with Molag Bal... and whatever other creatures lay in wait for me." He said, tail hanging limply

behind him as he disappeared into the portal. 


Aela and the companions croseed under the stone archway and entered the city. Once inside, they walked past the shops and market

stalls until they reached the doors of the mead hall. Aela was about to push the door open when Inigo turned to her; a feaarful

expression on his furry face.

"Why must we wait her until my friend is out there?" He turned and looked out to the Whiterun gate, "Shouldn't we help him?

Indirectly I mean, no need for us to get injured in the process. I just wish... we could do something."


He turned to meet Aela's snarling face.

"You idiot. If we went there, we WOULD be interfering. You heard that snow elf. He needs to do whatever task he was set for lone.

Now get inside so we can prepare for when he does come back."

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