Part 133: Good Ol' RockPART 133: GOOD OL' ROCK
When investigating an outbreak of dead merchants in the Wending Wood, our heroes happen across a magical elf with a passion for vengeance. Following a brief exchange of threats, the investigation continues...
What do you think had angered that elf girl so much?
Generally, racism. Specifically, dunno. Probably a dead loved one. Can't go ten yards in Ferelden these days without tripping over a dead loved one.
Like my father.
Or my best friend.
[Actually, we don't have to go far to find the motive. Just to the top of this hill, in fact.]
This place is scarred by pain. Many lives were lost. But these weapons seem.. out of place.
Not all is as it seems.
No shit, Ser Obvious.
There's an unburied corpse back there...
Death. We spirits know no more of it than you do. What lies beyond is obscured, even to us.
Can you tell me who these people were? They are unlike the others I have seen.
They are called the Dalish.
The body I inhabit was familiar with that name.
My memories say the Dalish were cast out, unwelcome in almost every land. Why is that?
I don't know. Life is not very fair.
How odd that mortals find so many differences to hate when you have so very much in common.
To one such as I, it is difficult to tell you apart. Are these similarities not worth rejoicing in?
I wish things were that easy.
Yet they are not.
But then I do not even understand demons. My entire existence is spent seeking out wrongs to right.
You can decide how to live yourself, you know.
Perhaps you are right. But what else am I, if not a seeker of justice?
Enough. I wish to look at this no more.
[Opposite the camp is this structure, but it's locked for now. What else can we find?]
[This dead guy for starters. He has a magical rock and a journal on him which is too long to quote here. I'll link it at the end of the post. It gives us a big hint for an upcoming puzzle.]
[There's also a big pile of sweet, sweet granite. This will make an excellent wall for our castle.]
And here are the darkspawn, right on cue.
Where are they all coming from?
[The darkspawn have a whole little camp around this hill. They've also decorated one of the engraved statues we need for the Maferath sidequest.]
Amazingly legible, considering what the darkspawn did to the statues.
[There's even more HOT HOT STATUE ACTION nearby.]
It has been... a long time.
I have forgotten... my name... But I am a warrior. I am Avvar.
You're clearly a statue.
I... was Avvar.
An Avvar barbarian? They have been gone for centuries.
Far longer than that.
Seasons beyond counting, I was a man, a man to be feared, a man of war.
The Tevinter mages... they came here seeking easy prey. But they found me, my brother, my tribe.
We broke their army at the Fort of a Thousand Vigils, then pursued the magister.
Fort of a Thousand Vigils? You mean Vigil's Keep?
Perhaps. Time changes all things.
How do you do that?
I have... a very... expressive voice.
We cornered the magister here. Here we would sacrifice him to Uvolla, the god of this wood.
As his guards fell one by one, he struck my brother and I with liquid fire.
So even as the magister's body was torn apart, my brother and I watched from stone eyes.
Can I do anything for you then?
The Tevinter magister that cursed my brother and I, he leads a mockery of life.
Disturb the ashes nearby. Summon him, kill him. Free me...
The magisters death will accomplish nothing.
Was your brother lying, then?
I have never known him to speak a» falsehood. But he is mistaken.
My brother is consumed by rage. Over long years, his anger grows.
Anger will not free us. Revenge will not free us.
I've used the long years to think, to pray to our gods.
What will free you, then?
There is no release. But with peace, serenity--we can sleep.
I have slept many seasons with only my brothers anger to call me back.
Show him the way. This does not have to be a torment.
He seems pretty intent on murdering the magister.
He is the son of the father, a warrior born.
With the long seasons, I have seen that violence often accomplishes naught. Teach him.
We need to teach a statue how to sleep?
I find the smell of fresh lavender often helps.
The deed... is not yet done...
Your brother says the magisters death won't free you.
My brother has grown weak.
In truth weakness was always in him. He was a thinker. A dreamer. Not a warrior.
In a thousand years, has no one killed the magister?
Twice before he has been struck down.
Once very long ago. Once by an Alamarri, Dane.
Dane? As in Dane from the legends?
I do not know your legends. He asked after a dragon. But I know nothing of dragons, either.
Then even if I kill the magister, you'll still be trapped.
You... you may be right.
My soul calls out to smite he who cursed my brother and me.
The curse cannot be lifted. You must make peace with it.
I... I will try. It will take time...
You... You have calmed him.
If it lasts perhaps we can sleep. And wake in a brighter future.
Are you really Avvar barbarians?
Does it matter?
Before I sleep... Let me whisper to you of lore of the earth, our secret herbs. May they help you, stranger.
[This gets us crafting recipes for top tier stamina restoration medicines.]
[And thus ends one of the weirder sidequests in the game. Hopefully no one will notice I just reused the same two pictures ten times for the entire conversation tree. Not like statues emote much.]
[We can also go kill the ancient magister now if we want. Our only reward at this stage is a bit of money however. Killing him at the brother's behest earlier would have netted us a sweet magical sword as well.]
Is that a magical pentagon?
[We can use the magic rock we took from the dead scholar to activate the pentagon.]
[The scholar's journal tells us the solution- we have to form a continuous path linking every node with the flaming path and ending back at the point we started from.]
Almost got it...
Is it supposed to glow in the dark?
[The Wending Woods has a very high density of sidequests. Here comes another now.]
You're standing in my dirt.
That dirt was specially prepared for my plants. I only have to find the seeds now. It's just a matter of time, Im sure.
Are you Ines, the botanist?
[If you remember, we got a quest to find Ines from our old pal Wynne back in episode 5.]
You've heard of me then? Read one of my books, have you?
Wynne told me to find you.
Wynne? What now? Shes not going to try to get me to teach slack-jawed apprentices again, is she?
She used to pester Uldred about his "duty" to the apprentices when he just wanted to be left alone. No wonder he went crazy and tried to kill everyone.
[THE TRUTH REVEALED.]
You don't seem to like her very much.
Shocking, isn't it? How could anyone not love golden, glorious Wynne to bits? (Snorts)
She did help save the world.
Well, what does little miss "I'm so special the Fade shines out my bum" want from me?
She said the College of Magi needed a voice of reason.
And she told you to find me? Huh. She must be clutching at straws.
Hmm. It's been some time since the the College was called together. Why now? No... I can't go. Not yet.
I'm not leaving till I get the seeds of the northern prickleweed. I've been here too long to just give up.
Let's just skip to the end. If I find the seeds for you, will you go to Cumberland?
Hmm. I suppose another pair of eyes wouldn't hurt. And if you actually succeed... I'm sure I could scrounge up some kind of reward.
You're looking for the seeds of a northern prickleweed. The plant has broad, dark green leaves with thorny stems and is most commonly found growing on rocky ground.
Go on, now. If I'm going to be traveling, I'll need to make preparations.
[This is pretty simple. The weed is back where we fought the darkspawn earlier in the update.]
[I also found another engraved statue en route.]
[I also fought a big, angry tree.]
['The Old One' gives you a piece of Heartwood, which can be given to Wade back at the ranch to make the best bow in the game.]
Any luck? Did you find any northern prickleweed?
Yes. Here are your seeds.
Marvelous! Look at them. Magnificent. Such a smooth seed coat. Like onyx. You, my friend, are a worker of miracles.
Here. I whipped up some herbal remedies for you. And a list of instructions. so you can recreate them if you like.
[This gets us the Superb Health & Lyrium Potion recipes.]
And now, it is time for me to leave. Perhaps our paths will cross again, at a later date. Good luck.
[Back on the other side of the Dalish camp...]
This one's in better condition than the others.
Amazing how useful a strong gazebo is.
What's that smell?
Hells. How many people died in these woods?
There's a trail of blood...
(Grunts) Don't look... don't look at me!
Who are you?
Olaf... my name. Came with friends to... to drive out... away the elf. But... the darkspawn were too quick.
We were ripped apart... biting claws and teeth from the darkness. And... then I woke... ﬂesh and bone and gristle under me... around me.
Everyone dead... dead soft meat melting into the ground. I... I crawled away... came here. Can't stand to... see it...
Did you kill the elves?
No. No. Darkspawn came first. They slaughtered us... took our steel. Brought it to the elven camp.
Tricked us, tricked the elf. Now... she thinks we are to blame. Hunts all in her rage... while they watch...
Wow, you're pretty observant for a dead man.
The darkspawn played elf against human. Why? This makes no sense. Regardless, the elf must be told and judged for her misdeeds.
Perhaps she has returned to her camp. We should seek her out there.
The dark ones are curious about you too. They watch you as well as her. Can you feel them?
Do know anything about the elf's sister?
Sister? I... have a sister... do I? Elf-sister, no... we did not take her. Probably dead. Or eaten.
Where did the darkspawn come from?
Beneath... around... from shadows.
...This disease will kill you, you know.
Am already dead. Am already gone. Make... make an end... please.
As you wish.
[This is only a small posse of darkspawn. Still, they're getting sneakier.]
[One of them also drops a strange trinket.]
[As Justice suggested, we should return to the elven camp.
Hm... that tree looks suspicious.]
Why are you still here? I told you to stay away from me! I warned you! This place is not for you!
You're killing people!
They deserved everything I have done to them! They brought this on themselves, just as you have!
[These two sylvans are not especially strong, but five wolves also show up during the battle to harass your dudes.]
[They're not too tough either.]
[Only one place left to go.]
You... you will never take me alive.
Did you really think you could escape from me?
I.. want to die where my loved ones died. Will you give me that, at least?
WHAT DO WE DO WITH HER?
1. KILL! She killed a lot of innocent people!
2. RECRUIT! She killed a lot of armed guards!
NEXT TIME: Hard Time
NEW CODEX CONTENT:
A Scholar's Journal