Chapter10:


It takes a few hours for Evelyn to get out of bed. The sooner she does this, the sooner she can get answers. Before leaving however she grabs one of her Black Books. It's the one that will lead her right to Miraak's tower. She really hopes it won't come to that, but at least Hermaeus Mora likes her. Gods know why, but she's not about to ask questions. Once she was sure she was ready she heads for the Hall of Countenance. She heads upstairs to where the orbs were as she turns to Artemis. He still doesn't seem to enjoy this, but he understands this was faster. "Ready?" He lets out a low sigh as he stands next to her. He wasn't about to make a huge fuss over this after all. She holds a soul gem over a orb and soon they find themselves outside. Standing in the small graveyard in Riften. It's like blinking, one minute you're in one place, the next you're somewhere else. At least Artemis is slowly getting used to it. A few guards give her an odd look, because most are sure she wasn't there a minute ago. She just smiles as she makes her way to the front gates. Once outside the town she looks for Shadowmere, but no doubt the horse has no clue where she is. She just shrugs as she holds out her hand. Artemis watches as a strange purple aura surrounds her hand and she holds her hand out. A portal opens and soon a undead horse stands before her. She just pets the horse as she turns to Artemis. "This is Arvak, I found him in the Soul Cairn." He's quiet for a second. Debating on what he should ask her first. "Soul Cairn?" He goes with that because he's not familiar with the name.

She hops on Arvak as he summons his own horse Blackfire. They ride side by side to Ivarstead. "I was with a woman, Serana, she was a vampire. She also had a Elder Scroll with her. Long story short she was hidden away so her father wouldn't get a hold of the Scroll. Anyways we had to find the other half of the Scroll, which was with her mother. In the Soul Cairn. It's.." She pauses for a moment to try and think of a way to explain it properly. "Some people have different names to it, but think of it as limbo. It's what happens to the souls that get soul trapped. They don't go to Sovngarde or any other resting place. You just go there, forever. The only way I got in was to get a part of myself trapped in a soul gem. It was weird trust me.." She looks up as they ride to make sure they were going the right way. It wouldn't take long to reach Ivarstead. The path up the mountain would be to narrow for them to ride, but she was used to the walk by now. They still have a ways to go however. "I found Arvak's skull down there and now I can summon him when ever I please. I can also summon a dragon I faced down there. I should do that, let Durnehviir fly around a bit.." She turns her head to Artemis. "But uh, I'll wait.." The look he's giving her is between shock and something else she's not to sure of. Once they reach the small farming village. She jumps off her horse. The people are giving them odd looks as she ducks her head. They're used to her by now, but the magical animals are giving them pause. "The trip up the mountain won't take long, a few hours or so. At most we'll run into wolves. Worse case, Frost Trolls." She turns and starts to walk, Artemis following after her after Blackfire returned into it's statue.

It was going to be a long walk, so she may as well pass the time. "So your friend, Jarlaxle, what happened to him?" His eyes narrow a bit. "I left him in the Bloodlands. If he's smart he returned to the Underdark, taking Athrogate with him. I'll never understand what he saw in that annoying dwarf." Her head turns at this. "You have Dwarves?" "They're different from the ones that vanished here, but yes. We have races far different then what you're used to. Just like the people here are different for me." Made sense, still it was surprising as well as interesting. They had a falling out, thanks to a magical Flute Jarlaxle had given him. "So aside from him, were you close to anyone else." He goes dead silent for awhile as they make their way up the mountain. "Not a lot..." He doesn't want to talk about Calihye. If anything all he wants to do is forget her. "If I learned anything, is not to trust people." Her head tilts at this. "Including me?" His mouth twitches at the thought. "I'm more wry, but only because of your...Thu'um as you call it." She chuckles slightly. "Oh that's understandable." She can't really fault him for that. "It's not everyday you really come across someone that can use the Way of the Voice. The only person that had any training was a man named Ulfric. People can learn how to Shout, it just takes a lot of training. I think the idea was to make him a Greybeard, but he turned away at the idea." She glances up as they make a turn up the path. "In fact the whole Civil War started because of Ulfric, he challenged the High King to a dual. At some point during the fight he used his Thu'um against the king and killed him. Some people supported Ulfric. Some say using his Thu'um should have been considered murder."

If it really was an 'honorable' fight then using the Thu'um was indeed a bad move. "I didn't get involved until Ulfric attacked Whiterun. It was about where I was trying to figure out how to talk Balgruuf into using Dragonsreach to capture a dragon." "So you took care of this Ulfric person." "Aye, I ended up joining the Legion for a bit. Probably not the best idea considering I joined the Brotherhood later only to end up killing the Emperor." She shrugs at this as she walks, it really didn't matter anymore. No one outside the Brotherhood knew it was her. She killed every last one on that ship. "Eh the old b*****d had it coming." Artemis scratches at his chin, he needed a shave. "So, you have no king, no emperor...who's in charge?" "No one technically, the king has a wife. But as much as I like Elisif but she's not experienced. So really at some point the Jarl's will have a Moot and they'll decide on who should be the next high king.." "What about the emperor?" She takes a deep breath. "That's for the Elder Council to figure out. But that might take awhile." Titus didn't have any children, and she killed his cousin, so it's going to be awhile before a dissension is made. "Some people think they might choose me. After all in the past, the emperor's used to have the Dragonsblood. Of course that was in the past. No doubt Tullius has told them about me." She starts to laugh. "Could you imagine, me in charge, hell I already run half of Skyrim." She tries to imagine it. "I think I would get bored, having to do all that work. I'm a woman of action, they would have to tie me down to make sure I didn't go running off into danger..." She's fine with how her life is, she doesn't need that kind of stress. "I'm sure at some point they'll get their crap together and figure out something. To be honest I'm not even really sure how all of it works."

She glances up as she walks, they still had a ways to go. But at least it was quiet. Not a lot of animals came up this way because of the cold. But that's normally because something larger is of hiding in the trees. She still keeps her eyes open, mostly for Trolls, or worse, Frostbite spiders. "I'm sure it's a long boring prosses that involves far more paperwork then I'm willing to deal with. I might be good with numbers but I have limits..." The air starts to get colder and it slowly starts to snow. She glances up, keeping her eyes on the weather. He takes a few steps back just in case she plans to clear the weather. The rest of the trip up the long path was quiet and mostly uneventful. When they finally reach High Hrothgar she lets him in. The place is big, like an old castle. Artemis looks around, surprised at how warm the place was. He spots the line of bazars burning, giving the place a peaceful glow. They enter the main hall as she looks around. It's not long before someone steps out, wearing a long grey robe. "Dragonborn, it's good to see you again." She bows her head to the man. "Greetings Arngeir, it's been awhile." The last time she came through here was when she returned from Sovngarde and that was a year and a half ago just about. "What do we owe this honor?" Artemis is surprised when three other's join, but they say nothing. He slowly moves closer to Evelyn. "Why are they so quiet?" She gives him a sympathetic smile. "They don't talk, even a whisper would shake this place. Like Arngeir they can use the Way of the Voice." He just bobs his head slowly, not wanting to stray to far from her side. He's not sure why but these old men unnerve him just a touch. Evelyn turns to Arngeir. "Sorry about my friend, I'm just passing through to visit Paarthurnax. I have...questions."

Arngeir gives her an unsure look, but nods. "Very well Dragonborn, we trust your judgement, the path is still open to you." She bows one last time before she heads up a small flight of stairs. Artemis is quick to follow her. Once outside he seems a large courtyard, a tower of sorts and a gate off to the side. It wasn't blocking anything so he couldn't help but wonder what it was for. But she doesn't head for the gate, rather she continues to go up to another set of stairs and a arch. The arch was blocked off by a powerful looking gale. He knows what's coming up so he covers his ears. She's starting to feel sorry for the poor guy. "LokVahKoor!" her Thu'um hits the gale and it fades. She turns to him as she heads up the stairs. "We need to move quickly." He waste no time following after her. He doesn't want to think what will happen to him if he doesn't. Though his fears are nailed in when they pass a frozen goat near a bridge. He makes sure to stay behind her at all times however. He's shivering now, but staying close to her helps. They reach another blocking gale. Before she can use her Thu'um, something heads toward them. "An Ice Wraith.." The quickest way to deal with them is fire. So she holds out her hands, creating a powerful flame spell. She unleashes it on the wraith as it hisses at her. It flies off, then back to try again. She uses her magic again and it bursts into shards of ice. Artemis moves to get a closer look. "A frost spirit of some kind?" "Aye, they like to hide in the snow. But fire takes care of them." She clears the way for them, and they continue to travel up.

It's a long way up, Artemis can start to feel it in his legs. He's not sure how long it takes, but they finally reach the top. It's the dead of night and all he can see is an endless sea of bright stars and the twin moons. He doesn't want to admit anything, but the whole thing takes his breath away. "Paarthurnax?" The place is oddly soothing, warm, but he still stays at her side. A large pile of snow moves as a large dragon comes out of hiding. The dragon had curled up near the word wall. She chuckles slightly as she watches him. "I'm so sorry, did I disturb you?" Paarthurnax rises to his full height and Artemis is quick to stand right behind her. His eyes look like a galaxy. The dragon almost reminds him of Hephaestus, a powerful red dragon. "Ah, Dovahkiin, I was meditating. I must have lost track of the weather." She smiles up at the dragon. "No worries, I wanted to ask you something." He lowers his head to her, Artemis can't keep his eyes of the dragons large teeth. "I was wondering if it's normal for Dragonborn's to have visions." His head tilts to the side. "At first it was just flashes of memories of the dragons I slain. But now it's more solid, it's been the same vision. Now I wouldn't mind but it's been...causing problems.." Paarthurnax lets out a low growl as he thinks. "If you don't mind my asking, what is it you see?" She shuffles a bit as she looks down. "I see my death, as a dragon." He lets out another sound as he rises. "Interesting, you can see into your Sil(soul). Not many can." He moves his tail slowly, giving this some real thought. She's the first Dragonborn he's trained, or talked with. So even he's not really sure if this is normal. Her dragon soul is a part of her, it's what gives her her power. But to see into it, that's new. Not only that but she sees her death. It must be a powerful memory for her spirit.

"Mmm, Dinok(death) is a powerful memory, more so for the Dov(dragon). It's possible your Sil holds onto it for a reason. A warning perhaps, but I doubt that's the case. We Dov can hold grudges for ages, as well as anger and pain." She nods slowly, looking at the snow under her. "That would make sense, it's angry and it's only know letting that out. But should it hurt?" Paarthurnax lets out a low sound, almost like a purr. "I feel the sword going through me, I don't like it." He's not sure what to tell her about that. She has a connection unlike anything he's aware of. So he has no idea what to tell her. "I'm afraid I don't have an answer for that. You are unique if this is the case. Perhaps you should take some time, meditate, try to form a stronger connection to your Sil." She gives it some thought and nods. "I'll give it a try, thank you." The dragon nods, before turning his gaze to Artemis. The poor man is still kind of hiding behind her. The dragon lets out a low laugh and flaps his wings, taking off. Snow flies in the air as she ducks her head. Once he was gone she turns to Artemis. "Well, I guess that answers a few things.." She rubs the back of her head lightly. "Maybe some down time couldn't hurt. I tend to push myself far more then what's really necessary." Maybe it is stress that's causing her pain. She can at least give it a try and if it doesn't work she still has the Black Book on her. "Are you okay?" He looked a bit shaken. "I wasn't expecting him to be so large. Yet you talk to him like an old friend." "I guess I got used to him, but I was a bit scared when I first met him. It's not everyday you get to talk to a dragon and not have it try and eat you."

She turns and starts to walk. The trip down wasn't as bad as the trip up. Still they had to be careful not to slip. He walks at her side, his arms crossed. "You understood every word that dragon said?" Her head tilts. "You didn't?" It never crossed her mind he had no idea what Paarthurnax was saying. But maybe because she's the Dragonborn she doesn't notice. "I could understand you, but not him." "It never crossed my mind you couldn't understand him. But I realize I can because I'm Dragonborn. From what he told me, my..um death, is a powerful memory for the soul I have. So it's reliving it in a sense. I guess the stronger I get, the stronger the emotion is. However he's not sure as to why I can feel it." She keeps her eyes on him as they make their way down the path. "His suggestion is I take it easy and try and meditate. Maybe try and form an understand between myself and my soul. And I'm slowly realizing how blood crazy this all sounds out loud..." She hangs her head, it's a miracle no one as locked her up and thrown away the key. Not that she wouldn't be able to pick the lock. "Just do me a favor if I completely lose what little sanity I have. Lock my crazy butt up and lose the key." "Consider it done." Her jaw drops a touch. "Damn man, brutal." Well at least he was honest she can't fault him for that. It was still late into the night by the time they make it back to High Hrothgar. Arngeir was waiting for her. "You return, did Paarthurnax have the answers you were looking for?" She waves her hand side to side. "Kind of, but because I'm the only Dragonborn he's known, he doesn't really know all the answers. Which is understandable, but he thinks the dragon soul that I have is holding onto it's final memories. So every time I have a vision I'm just going to keep seeing the same thing. So I'm going to take some time, mediate and come up with my own answer to help it. Myself, man this s**t is confusing..." Arngeir lets out a low chuckle. "I see, well you know best Dragonborn, maybe it can't hurt."

Traveling the rest of the way in the dark is a bad idea. So they stay in High Hrothgar until the sun starts to rise. Once it was bright enough they make their way back down the path. "If nothing else, if this doesn't work I still have the Black Book. If push comes to shove we can travel to Solstheim. It's the only place the book works." She still can't figure that one out, but she's not about to question Mora, she likes living. "Maybe we'll go to Sky Haven Temple. It's really the only place I can think of that's quiet, removed and no one else can get into it." It's a strange thought, but maybe spending sometime somewhere quiet might do her some good. After a few days removed from everything she can go back to doing what she does. The Brotherhood could survive without her for a tiny bit. "You don't have to come, but it's an interesting place." He just rolls his shoulders. "You go I go, someone has to keep an eye on you." She smiles brightly. "Awww I didn't know you cared." "Just making sure you don't go crazy." "You...have a point." She doesn't need to fall victim to Sheogorath. That's the last thing she wants. "Well get some food at the inn then we'll head of. We might have to take care of some locals but hey that's what makes it fun." She just hopes they don't run into any Briarhearts. Or Hagravens, but there's always a chance. Right now she just wants to sit down for a few minutes an enjoy a warm meal. Even if the inn there had rather bland food. She'll take just about anything right now as long as she can enjoy it.