Shinbira: Journal of a Survivor, Chapter 13

  • Camilla and I find Faendal back at the mill, lustily chopping away at a log of wood, a whistle on his lips. My discrediting his love rival has made me very popular with him! It wasn't exactly the hardest thing I've ever had to do: the bard Sven firmly planted his big fat Nord foot in his big fat Nord mouth! It is one of the more enjoyable things I've done though.

    He hears us coming and looks up: when he sees me his smile broadens. When he sees me with Camilla it lessens.

    "Brother Elf!", I say quickly, "How would you like to go on an adventure with me, one of great importance?" 

    "You know brother, I was just thinking: Riverwood's agreeable enough - for a Nord town - but I'm starting to get really bored with chopping & carrying wood all day. 

    "It will always be my home, of course, the place I love!" he adds swiftly, looking at Camilla. Then again at me, suspiciously.

    Camilla giggles.

    "I'd love to go with you boys, but Lucan won't let me. He says Bleak Falls Barrow is too dangerous." 

    "Bleak Falls Barrow?!" the Bosmer exclaims. "It is! Why would we go there?!"

    "Oh, Shinny can explain it all to you on the way. You don't mind do you? As he says, it is important!"

    That smile again.

    'Shinny'?! I'm pretty sure I've never been called that before...

    "Well, if it's important to you, no of course I don't mind."

    "Well, that's settled then!" 

    My new Wood Elf friend wants us to go to his house for supplies. He has a lot there: pelts, weapons, food, drink. And bugs!

    We take everything we can, keeping what we need and selling what we don't to a very excited Lucan. Faendal really is serious about this! 

    Camilla and I again walk through town to the bridge, this time with Faendal instead of Hadvar. I'd snuck a look at Alvor's forge as we passed and saw no sign of him. That Nord!

    She gives us directions again, and stands by the bridge waving, smiling and blowing kisses as we leave.

    "Goodbye boys! Thank you again! Don't forget: a golden claw! Be careful! Come back soon!"

    As we leave it occurs to me that Camilla has somehow charmed two men into going into great danger for her just so she can have back a stolen ornament. While she's back home, and living next door to the Inn where the besotted Sven spends most of his time...

    I keep these thoughts to myself, of course.

    I'm not used to being with so many people, and in such a quiet little town. It makes me uncomfortable. And Hadvar had warned me of soldiers patrolling the roads: Stormcloaks, Imperials - right now both are dangerous!

    I decide then to take a direct route, avoiding the roads. 

    "Good idea, 'Shinny'...

    Don't you start!

    "We should be able to walk over the hills without much trouble.

    "So... Camilla?"

    "Oh, Camilla!" I reply, carefully. "She's just friendly. And pleased that I'm helping her and her brother. And I like that she isn't Nord!", laughing.

    "Ha, ha! You're right there!

    "And...Bleak Falls Barrow?"

    "We're going to Whiterun first!"

    I explain about the stolen claw. He waits for me to finish, then asks: "But how do they know that the robbers took it there?"


    Actually, that's a good question. I don't know.

    "Maybe it's just the obvious place for a bandit hideout?" I suggest. 

    "Maybe. We'll see. But we'll need to keep our eyes open and our wits about us, alright?"


    I explain about Whiterun and the Jarl. He'd already heard about Helgen  - news travels fast in a small town! - but he still wanted to hear it from me.

    "I still can't really believe it!"

    "Neither can I, and I was there!"

    We reach the crest of a hill, hidden by rocks, when suddenly a slavering wolf jumps out at us, teeth bared, eyes crazed, heading straight for my face! 

    Before I can even move, Faendal has drawn his bow, nocked an arrow & shot the wolf right in the eye! It falls down dead at my my feet, caught in its death-leap.

    " 'Without much trouble', Faendal?"

    "I didn't say 'no trouble at all', did I?"


    "So you're an archer, then?", I respond, ignoring him.

    It's my turn to state the bloody obvious. I've been spending far too much time with that Nord!

    "Only the best in all of Tamriel! Probably."

    "Well, then you could give me some training, couldn't you brother?"

    "Well, I normally charge..."

    He thinks for a moment.

    "Alright, since we're journeying together, and on such an important mission... And only for a brother!"

    He still insists on my paying, then gives the gold back to me. Something to do with 'tax', he says.

    He's a good teacher. Soon I've learnt more than I thought I could in the art of archery. 

    It's not a skill I ever plan to use, but I don't tell him that...

    It's all good experience though, and I again feel energised!*

    We carry on up and down hills, through woods and over rocks. Soon our eyes are met with vast plains, farmlands, and in the distance: a great city and what looks like a palace in the clouds! I have to confess: it's beautiful.


    We walk on together, admiring the view...

        * Level 3, +Health, Agile Defender 2/5

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  • Idesto
    Idesto   ·  June 17, 2015
    Yes I saw that - its a good explanation!
  • Sotek
    Sotek   ·  June 17, 2015
    Ah I explained this. Lucan's in league with the bandits. Don't go it's a trap!!!!
  • Edana
    Edana   ·  June 17, 2015
    YESSSSSS. Glad to see this posted.
  • The Long-Chapper
    The Long-Chapper   ·  June 17, 2015
    Yeah, I always wondered how Lucan knew it was Bleak Falls Barrow. I write it a bit differently, but it makes sense too. Good job. I love giggly Camilla. *giggles*