Shinbira: Journal of a Survivor, Chapter 28

  • Last Seed 22nd: Whiterun 

    I let out a sigh. A long one.

    We're on the road back to Whiterun, having killed a dragon. And I shouted at a crazy old Nord and sent him flying. After he was raving about me being 'Dragonborn', or something. Now these mad Nord guards look at me as if I'm some sort of god.

    I'm deep in thought.

    Well, he's here. He's still here. Through all our battles. Even though he  - we're very.. different. Even though I sometimes may not be all sweetness and sunshine with him. And he's 'got my back'. 

    And he's here. Oh, well...

    I sigh.


    "Yes, brother."

    "I don't understand what's been happening to me."

    "I don't blame you, brother," he replies, matter-of-factly.

    "It's only been a week: it feels like years!"

    Before I can continue Faendal interrupts.

    "Look, Shinbira: it's a pleasant evening. The sun is shining still, there's no rain, it's not too cold and it's not too windy. The plains of Whiterun ahead of us are beautiful today. There's a nice smooth rock here that's a perfect shape for our arses, so let's sit down and enjoy the view, eh?"

    I feign outrage and shock. "Faendal: you swore!"

    "It has been known to happen!" he replies, laughing. "And besides, I only said 'arses' "

    "But what about that ale in the Bannered Mare that you were so keen on?"

    "I could take that or leave it," he responds. "And anyway you would probably have 1 or 5 too many, get drunk and start a fight. Again."

    I'll let that slip. Mostly because he's probably right.

    "Also," he continues, "I believe we have supplies of our own, do we not?"

    Rummaging around in my pack I feel glass. "Yes, brother: I believe we do." Before long I have a nice little row of bottles which I've lined up on the rock. Faendal does the same. 

    I open one, and drink. Faendal does the same.

    "That feels good!" After a few satisfying guzzles I start to piece together my thoughts.

    "A week? A bloody week! How has it only been a week? But it has: I checked! I got caught up in that bloody Imperial raid, then I'm on a bloody cart, mistaken for a Stormcloak. Of all things, a f'chak Stormcloak!

    "I get carted off to Helgen, and the bloody Imperials won't even tell me what I'm supposed to have done. The driver doesn't tell me, the Captain doesn't tell me, the paper soldier doesn't tell me, Tullius doesn't tell me, the axeman doesn't tell me! And it's because they don't know: but they're happy to chop my head off anyway! And -  for once - I've done nothing! Nothing much."

    "And I'm saved by - what? A last-second pardon? A rescue mission? A storm? A broken axe? A freak cheese-wheel accident? No! By the attack of a gods-forsaken mythical beast that's supposed to have been extinct for thousands of years, if it ever existed at all: a bloody dragon!" 

    I pause and finish the bottle, then start on a new one.

    "Here's to Dragons then!" Faendal jokes, raising his bottle.

     I almost laugh. "Dragons!" I shout as I take another gulp of refreshing brown liquid. 

    "And then," I continue, spitting ale and not caring, "I survive the dragon attack, how? By being rescued by, of all people, a f'chak Nord, an 'Imperial Nord' if there is such a thing, the bloody paper soldier! And we fight together, and I call him 'friend'! And he takes me to his family - his Nord family - and they put me up, and give me food and drink, and give me supplies, and teach me smithing, and that crazy woman, and... well, that's where you came in.

    "You know the rest. Jarls, wizards, claws, puzzles, undead horrors, bandits, dragonstones, and that wall! And now all this!", looking back towards the Tower, gesturing wildly. 

    I've stopped. I finish my bottle. I open another one. And drink. 

    "Well?" I say to Faendal.

    "Ahhhhh...." is all he says, leaning back on the rock. "It's a beautiful sunset isn't it?"

    "What? I was hoping for something a little more... helpful, Faendal."

    "Does not this beautiful scene give you pause, brother? The gentle breeze, the evening chorus of little birds, the trinkling of a distant stream, the wind rustling gently through the bushes? Does it not clear your mind, brother Mer?"

    "No, Faendal: no it bloody doesn't! And how many have you had? You may have been raised by bloody trees but I grew up in the wintry slums of Windhelm: this nature stuff doesn't do anything for me, OK?"

    "Just stop for a minute, Shinbira, just be still. Indulge a silly old Bosmer, please? Just watch this beautiful sun as it sets, sitting low in the sky, growing ever larger, until finally it disappears altogether, leaving behind it an explosion of colour and light as it goes, until we enter again a time of darkness. Just this once?"

    I sigh. "Gods, Bosmer! Very well."

    Again, the bastard is right. It is beautiful. We sit and watch and drink until the sun is all but gone, lost in our thoughts.

    Or in my case, thought.

    Finally I speak again, turning my face to Faendal's in the gathering gloom. Just one word: "Why?

    "I've not exactly had an uneventful life. But this? I've never experienced, or even heard of the like. Why? Dragons, the Shout, that wall? Those crazy guards who seem to think I'm some sort of Chosen One. Chosen by who? For what?"

    "There must be answers somewhere, Shinbira" Faendal responds. "How do you think you'll find them?"

    "I don't know, brother."

    "What about your gods, Shinbira?"

    "Hmph," I retort. "One of the few truths I heard at Helgen, from Hadvar no less - what was it? 'Truly your gods have forsaken your people.' Generally I leave them alone, and they leave me alone. Or so I thought."

    "You think they might have a hand in all this?"

    "I honestly don't know, Faendal. Perhaps. I don't know!"

    "Well, I suggest we try to find out.  At least for now shall we return to Whiterun? I believe Jarl Balgruuf may want to speak to you."

    "Yes, yes, Faendal: we should do that. And, ahhh..."


    "Ahhh... thank you."

    "Haha! You are ju'rohn, brother." 

    'ju'rohn', huh? Nice.

    "Just one more thing before we go, Faendal."

    "Yes, brother?"


    This time I manage to jump away before he strikes...

    Don't forget: 'If you like it then you oughtta put a 'click' on it'...

    And if you don't please tell me why, or how else will I get better? Also if you do!


    Table of Contents


  • Idesto
    Idesto   ·  August 23, 2015
    Haha, the archery training! I kinda miss it
  • Exuro
    Exuro   ·  August 22, 2015
    You have to watch out for those cheese wheel accidents... It's good to have these reflection chapters every once in a while, especially for a blog format when some details can start to fade. Like... Impromptu Archery Training! 
  • Idesto
    Idesto   ·  July 29, 2015
    Thanks Sotek. They do for a while yet at least 
  • Sotek
    Sotek   ·  July 29, 2015
    I do like the way Faendal and Shin bounce comments off one another. Nicely done Idesto. I hope they stick together for a while yet.
  • The Long-Chapper
    The Long-Chapper   ·  July 29, 2015
    I expect nothing less. 
  • Idesto
    Idesto   ·  July 29, 2015
    Thanks to you both! 
    You may be in for a surprise Lissette. That's all I'm saying 
  • Edana
    Edana   ·  July 29, 2015
    This one made me smile. :) Good work Idesto.
  • The Long-Chapper
    The Long-Chapper   ·  July 28, 2015
    Ultimate Skyrim buddy movie; Shinbira and Faendal. :)
    They have a great dynamic. Can't wait for you to write on the greybeards.