C.O.T.W Chapter 61: Waters Clouded By Time



Hasir threw his hands up in exhasberation; goading her to say something,

"Well, what did my parents talk about? Out with it!" Hasir yelled, shaking the little lizard


Khash wrenched herself free of his grasp and told him she was about to get to that,

"I saw papers strewn across a medium sized wooden table, what these papers said I have no idea but I do know that the

Argonians looked weary as if they had not slept in weeks. They also looked utterly terrified as they talked about the ancient

Argonians who once prospered in Blackmarsh.


As Khash told her story, Hasir's mind wandered to Blackmarsh, to his paternal aunt and uncle's hut as he wondered what that

coversation sounded like. Even though it was in his head, Hasir could actually feel the sensation of being lifted off the wooden bench

and transported through time two years ago when Khash returned to Blackmarsh.


In his mind's eye, Hasir could see the huts positioned around a large tree with wooden walkways and ramps connecting each one.

There were huts of various shapes and sizes around the tree each for different functions of Argonian life. As Hasir's mind flew

over each one like a bird soars over a mountain, he saw a birthing hatching huts as well as huts for other purposes as well. From his

high vantage point, he could also see a pool of amber water situated between the roots of the large tree. Hasir heard voices coming

from one of the huts. He moved in closer and saw a medium sized wooden table with pieces of parchment strewn across it. Hasir

guessed these were journal entries from the ancient Argonian civilization along with a picture of a surly looking Argonian. He gasped

with horror when he saw what they actually were: various pictures of tree, namely hist that were devoid of life. He also saw Khash

hiding in one of the baskets that lay in the corner of Iskenaaz's hut; he smirked to himself as he imagined Khash's tail, if she had

one coiling around the basket. He knew Khash was trying to listen intently to what they were talking about. Hasir had no choice but

to eavesdrop as well. 


Iskenaaz slammed his fist down on the table in irritation,

Xuth, that's the fifth Mnemic egg stolen this week." He withdrew his fist and strode around the table, "why is this happening to us?

Surely the dread father will have an answer even if the Hist refuses to help us."


Kassamae tried to curb her husband's rage by any means nessecary,

"Well, maybe, er, the bandits will show themselves." She crossed her clawed fingers, silently hoping that that answer will satisfy him,

it didn't. What it did, however, was make Iskenaaz more flustered


"Why in Oblivion would they show themselves? Fucking cowards, every last one of them." He spat at her, causing her to cower

behind the basket Khash was in.


Iskenaaz sighed, walked over and coaxed his wife out of her hiding place.

"Akaiva, I am sorry for yelling at you, but it dries my scales to see you so weak spined, lizard up for Hist's sake." He said as he

pulled her over to the table.


A second later, there came a knock on the hut door, a dark green Argonian with chocolate spines entered, Hasir did not know who

this was; Akaiva asked Waxluthil why he was there, he just said he wanted to know what they were all in a huff about.


Akaiva shrieked and placed a clawed hand over her heart, breathing rapidly,

"By my scales, Waxluthi, you gave me a fright." She said, sighing, "I was, er, just arguing with-er, well, Iskenaaz was arguing not I;

you see, I never argue, I-" She began but Iskenaaz shook his head slowly and they walked over to the table; Waxluthil was as

stumped as they were after they had recounted their story to him.


He had no idea of any of the journal entries except for one on the far end; he walked over to it, smirked and picked it up,

"Ah yes, This hand writing I know it well," He said as he picked up the sheet of parchment, This was written by the Saxhleel counsel

to an Argonian sorcerer named Beela-Kaar. Akaiva and Iskenaaz froze and looked at each other, shrugged and then looked at


"Who is this Beela-Kaar?" They asked him


Waxluthil just gawked at them with his mouth open,

"Wait... what? Are you telling me you do not know your ancestors?" The two Argonians standing opposite him shook their heads


Waxluthil placed his palms on the table and stared at them intently,

"Well, he was not a hero, mind, he was, er, more like a hero turned villain because he got pissed off that his brother, an Argonian

named Makes-Stupid-Choices married a high elf," he asked the Argonians if they knew high elves were dark elves that had not yet

had the ash from Vvardenfell change their golden skin to more of a dull grayish-blue color. The Argonians nodded and said they did

know that because the tribes occasionally get together to tell stories of their past and how they try to rectify the mistakes of back



Waxluthil chuckled softly to himself and shooked his head,

"That was the prefabricated story I was told to relay to you," His voice droped to a whisper, "Beela-Kaar was actually killed as part

of Molag Bal's plan to suck the life out of Nirn and its inhabitants." Their head and tail drooped, "He was killed by one of Molag Bal's

general... The Doomstrider."


Waxluthil waggled his finger at them as they put too much stock in the past and ignore the present,

"That... my inept hatchlings, is called Shanutei, you know, er, fear of lingering too much on the past that one loses himself

completely." Hearing this, the two Argonian gawked at him as if he were a Wamasu duing the conga. He groaned silently while he

ran a scaled hand down his face.


"You've never heard of Shunatei? By the hist, you guys really are thick." He said, shaking his head. This rather brash statement

earned indignant looks from Kassamae and her husband. he told them of how ancient Argonians feared change and set out some

canis root and wamasu meat pie to try and curb Sithis' anger. He also told them that an Argonian sorcerer named Beela-Kaar, whom

had once served the Saxhleel as an advisor, feared the dread father the most."


He faced Iskenaaz and his Argonian wife and told them that Sithis had colluded with Peryite to punish Beela-Kaar, who had broken

one of the dark brotherhood's many tenents, by cursing his wife with an incurable disease known as the Tharassian plague; it was

known to wipe out not only Beela's wife but also the whole civilization of ancient Argonia.


After the disease did its dirty work, Waxluthil had told them, had held his wife's body and cursed Sithis, the Hist and even his fellow

Argonians, who by now lay dead in the marsh with grave-stakes driven through their hearts in order to prevent them from becoming

bog-blights, for his wife's untimely death. So he didn't succumb to the disease himself, he had locked himself in one of the

xanmeers that served as a morbid reminder of the tragic belief that the ancient civilization would prosper forever.


Iskenaaz looked at his wife and make a gesture with his hand while he rolled his eyes and stuck out his tongue, his wife, Akaiva

giggled. Waxluthil narrowed his eyes suspiciously and slammed his tail down making both the Argonian and his wife jump,


"We, er, well, we did not expect-" The female Argonian began but tailed away hopelessly


Waxluthil's eyes locked onto her, almost as if he could read her thoughts,

"Me to be standing right here? Oh, and don't worry about creating a bullshit story, I heard everything." He said, eyeing them so

heatedly that his eyes could've sent them one a one way trip to Oblivion, "Well maybe heard was the wrong word, saw everything

was more of what I did." He told them, his eyes narrowing dangerously 


Iskenaaz mocked him a few inches from him and roared with laughter, clutching his sides when he did this. Waxluthil glared at him

and smacked him across the face with his tail, sending him hurtling across the room into a pile of boxes that stood in a neat stack

opposite him. The boxes had toppled over on top of him. He scrambled to his feet eyeing Waxluthil with contempt. He fought the

urge to run at the impertenent Argonian and wring his scaly neck. In the end, Iskenaaz just strode over to the chocolate-haired

Argonian and placed a hand, albeit too harshly on Waxluthil's shoulder.


Iskenaaz fixed him with the same intentive stare that he had done to them minutes before,

"There's no denying it any longer," He sighed heavily, "My wife and I think your egg had spent too much time in the shade, don't

look at me like that, it's true." He said, laughing at Waxluthil's confused expression. What? You are; I can't change the fact that you

did not drink as much of the hist sap when your were a hatchling as other Argonians did. You got the short end of the stick, or

branch as it were." At this, Waxluthil flew into a tirade saying that Iskenaaz and his wife were not perfect either, sure they may have

drunk more hist sap than he did but that was no reason going around belittling everyone else.


Iskenaaz said a slew of curse words in Jel and flung himself at the smirking Argonian. Akaiva saw this and hurled herself at her

husband to try to stop him injuring their guest. She said that yes, he may have been all those things he said but thar was no

reason for Iskenaaz to get angry at the Argonian standing across from him. She advised him to collect himself, let the rough waters

calm a little and that he and their guest should return to the matter at hand since that was more pressing than any trivial dispute

they may have.


Iskenaaz's body went limp in her arms which had whipped him around to face her,

"You're right, my Uxith-beeko, I will not let my emotions get the best of me." He hissed softly in her ear, she released him.

he slumped intto one of the woven chairs that surrounded the table; Waxluthil did the same. A white blanket of fog obscured the

rest of the scene and Hasir opened his eyes and found himself on the floor in front of the wooden bench with the head of the wolflord

carved in the middle of the backpanel. Hasir groaned as he held his head,

"Wha-? Where am I? why did it get foggy? What happened to Waxluthil and my materal aunt and uncle? What hap-" He began, he

didn't even register ever getting to him feet or being slapped by Khash to help him get a grip on himself.


The chapel swam into view as he saw Khash grinning at him and telling him that the 'fog' was due to her brain not having any more

story to tell. He asked her what happened after all he saw transpired. He scratched his head trying to piece together what he had

seen; regardless of this, one image seem to swim at the forefront of his thoughts more than anything else he had seen. 


He finally asked Khash of what had been tormenting him ever since he lleft that insight into her memories,

"Erm, Khash, I was wondering somethiing." He said, rubbing his hands distractedly, "Who is Beela-Kaar? I mean, I did gather from

the vision that he is an Argonian Sorccerer but anything more would be helpful." He asked, his tail coiling and uncoiling behind him. 


Khash told him about what more she had learned from her time eavesdropping on the Argonians' coversation,

"I learned a great deal more than you saw Hasir; that was a mere snippet of what I witnessed." Hasir asked her to share if she was

comfortable doing so. She smiled at this gesture and told Hasir all she knew, including the real reason the Mnemic eggs were

disappearing, thus causing their hists to cease their endless cycle of death and rebirth.


Hasir looked at her perplexedly and shook his head as if he were ridding himself of some bothersome mosquitoes,

"Thanks but that does not explain who Beela Kaar is and why he wants to ruin the Argonian-hist relationship." He told her


Khash smiled and told Hasir what he wanted to know,

"Hasir, as you may or may not be aware, Beela-Kaar, an evil sorcererer, wanted to steal the eggs to prove to the Argonians that

Sithis is to be feared, not revered. Beela-Kaar, when he shut himself in his Xanmeer, he worked on a plague that would wipe out not

only ancient Argonia but all of presentday Blackmarsh as well. The plague also did something to the water and air of that region;

making that region inhospitable to anyone but us Argonians."


Hasir looked blankly at her for a few seconds and slowly nodded his head,

"So that is why we now have gills and resistances to poison and diease, because of Beela-Kaar?" He asked, surprised


Khash nodded and said at least something good came from the ancient lizards. She read Hasir's mind and nodded again and said

that that plague also caused bog blights to appear. She strode aroung the area Hasir occupied and said that Bog Blights are bodies of

of ancient Argonians that did not have grave-stakes to pin them in the swampy waters after they succumbed to the Tharassian

plague. They would then walk the swapmy looking for Argonians to pass the plague to as per Beela-Kaar's instructions. 


Hasir screwed his eyes up tight and tried to force these events into some order that made sense to him; he failed spectacularly,

"Khash, what else do you know of him? Did you hear anything about his backstory? Why he became evil?" He asked


Khash looked at him indignantly and yelled at him that she already told him all she knew. Hasir was taken aback by this behavior;

which was very unbecoming, considering her kind nature. Khash apologized to him while her eyes flicked to the floor. Hasir said he

accepted her apology despite rage threatening to force him to lash out at her.


She raised her head and said in a hushed voice,

"I also heard that there were non-Argonians continuing his 'noble' work that he started all those centuries ago; the dunmer that

captured us were doing so because of Beela-Kaar whom them believe to be alive, whether by dark magic or otherwise, I do not

know; maybe he became a bog blight himself who knows." She looked at Hasir and shrugged, "All I know is Nerethi's ancestor and

his ancestor got married and that not only angered Hircine but also Beela Kaar and your dunmer slaver." She said, pointing a clawed

finger at Hasir.


She pondered on this a while longer. Immediately her hands flew to her mouth,

I wonder if Molag Bal is just a pawn of Beela-Kaar as are the dunmer; used only to carry on his work. If he is Hircine may not know

this. We must inform him." She strode to the statue of Hircine and began to pray.


In mid prayer, she remebered something and got to her feet,

"What if your brother Tulen is roped into all of this?" She exclaimed, staring at Hasir, who just chuckled, "Tulen? Why would he be

involed in this?" But then he stopped laughing as realization dawned on him, "Oh Hircine, you might be right, what if the silver hand

are also tools of Beela-Kaar and the whole idea of Molag Bal wanting to wipe out lycanthropea was just a clever ruse to throw

us off the trail altogether so he can continue his dark deeds unfettered?" He felt sick to his stomach to think his brother would be

working for the enemy of all Saxhleel.


Khash nodded sadly as she confirmed Hasir's deepest fears,

"Yes, he is working for Beela-Kaar. the dark sorecerer has eyes and ears everywhere, so we must be careful of what we say. I can

tell you this, though, he was once a great advisor to the An-Xileel." She said in a hushed voice, "Beela wants to kill the false gods

who fill every hatchling with, as he puts it, false knowledge of their past lives." 


Hasir eyed her with a confused look,

"Sorry, but who are the An-Xileel?" He asked, forcing Khash to groan, a sound which carried in the near empiness of the chapel


"Who is? You've never heard of the ruling body of Argonia?" She said, groaning even louder this time, "maybe your egg spent too

much time in the shade as well, thee An-Xileel was the supreme leaders of Argonia, sure they had tribes in those days but the true

leaders were those that made their homes in Xanmeer just like all civilization did back then. Hasir closed his eyes again and

imagined the ruling body of Argonia and Khash talked about them as if she was there.


 Khash took a deep breath and began her tale,

"Long ago, in ancient Argonia, the smartest and most respected Argonians served all of the once prosperous land as the governing

body of ancient Argonia that appointed tribal leaders and making political decisions. They were even able to communicate directly

with the hist; They would translate the hist's needs, feelings and wishes directly to the people. 


Khash told Hasir the An-Xileel were usually clutch members of the tribes that dotted Blackmarsh. In order to ensure that they did not

become all-powerful, some of the more prominent tribes of the time appointed advisors to the Argonian counsel. These tribes,

namely the daad-water tribe of northeastern Murkmire, ghost-people tribe of southern Murkmire and bright throat tribe of central

Murkmire sent their most prostigious members forth to the village of Mudtree to take their seats on the counsel. Iskenaaz, a proud

and honorable Argonian warrior was chosen as the advisor from the bright-throats; next, Many-Eyes-Hatching, a female shadowscale

from the dead water tribe and finally, a powerful Argonian sorcerer named Beela-Kaar was chosen by the ghost people tribe. 


Khash paused and looked shocked at Hasir whose face was contoring with pain as if something was happening to him; what was

happening though, she did not know. If she had to guess, she would link what had happened months ago on the ship to this

instant. She reached out to grab him as he shook violently, before she could hold him though, she heard a 'thud' along with more

twitching. She cast a glance down at him asking if he was alright, but he did not answer as his muscles were contracting too

painfully for him to make any sounds except for screams of pain.


As he lay on the floor of the chapel thrashing about uncontrollably, his legs and hands began to lengthen and grow steadily hairier,

his back arrched painfully as thick blak fur the thickness of the armor he wore sprouted fromm his back and spread over his entire

body. The last thing Khash, still wide-eyed with shock, saw before the seven minute long torture fest was over was his eyes growing

larger and his nose and mouth form together into the muzzle of a wolf. 


Dazed, Twilight got to all four paws and sniffed the air. He stared at Khash, wrinkled his nose, showed his fangs and emitted a

long, low growl that sound like it came from his now confused canine brain moreso than his muzzle. Khash tried to talk him out of

his current behavior and that she might reach his high-function reptilian brain, or however much of it was left after the

transformation. She knew it woould hopeless; the transformation had swaped his reptilian brain for a more clever wolf brain, still she

had to try,

"Hasir, listen to me," She said hopping down from the bench and slowly approaching the wolf, "I know you are still in there, do not

let this wolf mind you have now take over, you have to fight this." She pleaded with clasped hands


She squealed in fright as the wolf inched ever closer to her, forcing her to take shelter behind the edge of the bench,

"I may not smell like it but I am your egg-sister, you have to believe that." Khash tried fruitlessly to reason with him even pleading

with him, but this fell on deaf ears as the wolf had his mind on one thing: meat. 


Khash sat down, drew her knees up to her cheat in order to make herself more easily hidden from the savage predator just feet

from her She also knew that meat was not the only thing on the wolf's mind. To him, a different smell bombarded his nose among

famliar scents; the scent of his fellow werewolves. This new scent smelled of swamp and stone, it did not smell of fur and blood;

the wolf knew he had to rectify this somehow. The wolf sniffed the stagnant air of the chapel and howled out as soon as he found the

Argonian scent. 


Khash edged around the back on the bench as she could hear the wolf drawing closer. Leaning against a support pillar, Aela did her

best impersonation of the god of the hunt and told the faithful 'hound' that his hunt is with the wrong prey and that the proper prey

can be found a far yards east of the chapel grazing in the field near Whitefish river. The wolf growl a warning in Aela's direction and

she loweereed her hands, knowing that she messed up big time. Twilight's ears rotated as he strained to hear the scurrrying of feet

behind a bench He found the sound he was looking for.


Khash hurried to the people standing behind the altar while using the benches for coverr as she went. She knew Twillight couldn't be

far behind as she heard his panting breath along with his claws scrapping the marble as he ran toward her. He was too clever to play

this game of cat and mouse, or for a more accurate description, wolf and hare. Hasir tried to plead with the wolf to stop and let

Khash go free, that he was just showing her the chapel; the wolf, however, bought none of this. An almighty splintering of wood

echoed throughout the chapel as Twilight ran full force toward his prey. Khash had the misfortune of being on the wrong end of one

of the bench Twilight had broken through. 


Valjira and the rest of the Cult of the Wolf turned their heads just as the black and white wolf was about an inch from the terrified

Argonian; they ran fullpelt toward her and formed a circle around her. The wolf, however, just batted them out of the way with one

massive claw. They flew through the air and landed in a heap beneath a pillar; Everyone that is except for Aela. The female nord

drew her bow and aimed a few inches above the wolf's head. The wolf still came, Oblivious to her actions.


Aela drew the drawstring and shot a warning arrow,

"Hasir, you don't want to do this; if you don't back off the next arrow will pierce your heart, BACK OFF NOW!" She yelled,

tightening her grip on her bow.


The wolf seeemed not to hear her, so Aleaa fired the air, the wolf saw this and dodged out of the way, causing the arrow to whizz

harmlessly by him to land with a clatter on the stone floor. Aela stared at this and swore; Seeing no alternative, she ran at the wolf

while brandishing a sivler dagger. The wolf ran toward her narrowing its eyes. The next second the wolf used his full wieght to knock

Aela into a pillar under one of the stained glass windows. Aela lay there unconscious, her bow inches away from her hand. 


Twilight tore his eyes away from his pack sister and focused again on the prey, the scent of non-lycanthropy now burned so much in

his nostrils that he would do anything to rid himself of it. He lunged forward, streched a paw out in front of him and slashed with all

of his might. One claw as long as an iron dagger and as sharp as a daedric dagger ripped Khash's arm wide open. She screamed as if

her whole body was on fire, which was soon going to be the case. She pulled out a leatherr strip from her pocket and tied it around

the areas where the blood leakage wwas greatest and tied the open bits of green flesh closed as she thought this would both help it

heal and also stop the spread of the disease, well, she was half right.


The rest of the pack heard this, including Farkas, Vilkas and Rakel would had all had nervous looks on their faces in they were not

sure if they were in the right location. Seeing the black and white wolf snarling at the Argonian prey that lay spread-eagled before

him she transformed into her wolf form and sprinted as fast as her legs could carry her; she wanted to get between Hasir and

the fallen Argonian, who was just know slowly backing away from the wolf, as fast as she could before he could do any further

damage. She got to the Argonian and gently pushed her out of harms waywith her body. 


The she wolf howled and ran at the black and white wolf; he dodged her quite easily and swiped at her red coat with his paw. The

blow landed; the huge claws raked across her nose. The red wolf gave a yelp of pain and massaged her nose with her paw to see if

she could lessen the pain. It subsided somewhat and she retaliated by slashing at his chest with her paw, leaving a wound so deep

that Khash thought he might die then and there. He did not; instead the wound seemed to stitch itself up just seconds after the

wound was created. The wolf growled causing the brown wolf to back up slighty but she did not for a second take her eyes off of the

yin yang wolf.


The brown wolf looked up and saw that the sun had started its ascent in the sky, the wolf howled out a long, mournful note as fur

turned back into skin and her muzzle shortened. Rakel ran over to the fallen Argonian and caast an angry glance at Hasir, whose

yelps of pain turned to screams as he transformeed back.


Her eyes returned to the Argonian who was fighting to stay conscious,

"The wolf bit me, all because... Smelt different" She said weakly, Her voice trailed off as her breathly became more and more

labored. Rakel laughedd and said she should be lucky because being bitten was the least of her worries. Khash began to laugh, but

the paain was too uch and sshe lost consciousness.


She stormed over to Hasir and cuffed him hard on the back on the head,

"You fucking moron, what have you done?" She asked, garing at him


Hasir opened his eyes and smiled at Rakel, completely unaware of what he had just done,

"Hey, what's up?" Her asked, beaming at her


Rakel bent down, grabbed the collar of his armor and lefiting him off of his feet,

"Just what in Oblivion was that, hmm?" Rakel gestured toward the unconsciouus Argonian, "If she does not make it, I am going to

skin you alive! What in Oblivion were you thinking, all she did was tell you a story, you didn't have to attack her."


Hasir began to explain himself but Rakel stuck out a hand saying she ddid not want to her about it and that Valjira said if anyy wolf

underr this roof bit a non-lycaanthrope that it would be his or responsibilty to see that they were tended to. Hasir told her that he

was nnot in his right mind when he bit her; that he was still at the edge of his seat waiting for Khash to tell the rest of her gripping

tail when the wolf took over.


Rakel laughed mockingly as she raised a closed fist so that he saw she was serious about this,

"Yeah, you won't be in your right mind in a few minutes, now leave beefore I make good on my promise." She growled, eyeing him

threateningly. Hasir chuckled at this; an action that eearned him a slap on the back of the head by the surly nord. Hasir raised his

hands in defeat and walked to where Khash lay, lifted her limp body and drapped it onto his shoulder. Her body flopped around like a

wet noodle as he walked out of the chapel and went to Whiterun via the secret passage.

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