Bleak Falls Barrow

Shizune and I arrived in Riverwood and booked a room for the night, trying to keep away from the eyes of Hadvar and Ralof. We met and spoke to a couple of the townspeople. I decided to head to the local trading post, where I found a young couple arguing about something. When I asked what was the matter, they told me a story about Bandits stealing a valuable artifact from their shop and fleeing to Bleak Falls Barrow. I offered my services to them. After all, a man’s got to make a living. Shizune and I would retrieve the claw for them and make a bit of cash in the process.

We gathered our things and traveled up the nearby mountain to Bleak Falls Barrow. The walk took a couple hours, and the temperature dropped fast. It was windy and snowing when we got to the top. From our low-down vantage, we were able to see a couple Bandits huddled around a fire, and one on a small lookout tower. Shizune and I hid in the snow and fired arrows at him, dropping him fairly quickly. We disposed of the others with relative ease, though I did take a nasty blow to the ribs. Nothing a little magic can’t fix, right?

We entered the Barrow as quietly as we could. The first area was a small, warmly lit cave that was a nice change from the harsh outdoors. Two bandits were arguing loudly about their leader. Shizune and I both took up positions and fired arrows into the back of the larger of the two. He dropped fast, and the other bandit, a middle aged woman, surrendered and we let her escape. From there, we descended.

We traveled down a winding passage and some stairs. The next room had walls of hewn stone, and contained several sarcophagi. When we threw a rock into the chamber, the lids of the sarcophagi were tossed aside, and five undead creatures emerged. A heated battle took place, and we might have been overtaken if it weren’t for a mysterious arrow that arrived at exactly the right time.

By this point, Shizune and I decided that it would be best to retreat back to the first chamber and spend some time resting and nursing our wounds. Naturally, we got a little carried away, and we found ourselves nodding off to sleep.

When we awoke, Shizune was being held at swordpoint and I was looking down the wrong end of a bow. A young woman with wild hair and a halfling in heavy plate armor were politely inquiring as to what we were doing here. We told them the truth, and they seemed to accept it. They told us that they were going to the Jarl of Windhelm to tell him news of the dragon’s wherabouts. Apparently it had traveled to Bleak Falls Barrow when it left Helgen! The Halfling decided to accompany us on our quest for treasure.

We bid them farewell and decided to venture further into the dungeon. We fought our way through a few undead soldiers until we found a small round chamber. Within it, there was a man trapped in a cage. It looked like he had been there a while. He told us that he was the leader of the bandit group that we had slaughtered on the way in, and he was trapped. He had the golden claw as well as a means to open the treasure vault. We decided to force him to tell us all he knew before letting him down, taking the claw, and telling him to scram.

He did as he was told, but barred the door behind him so that we couldn’t go back. Oh well. We went forward, and came to a door with a claw inlay in it. After some mucking about, we were able to use the claw to open the door and found ourselves in a vast chamber with a sarcophagus and a stone wall covered in curious inscriptions. As we approached, the sarcophagus opened, and a horrific undead creature emerged. He pointed at us, and uttered a word. Something like “dovahkiin” before attacking.

It was a difficult fight. We barely made it out alive. In the end, we were able to reap the spoils of Bleak Falls Barrow, and absorb some sort of power from the wall. I don’t fully understand it, but I don’t think it was harmful, so I’m not going to question it.

We found a way out, thankfully, and as we emerged, we were greeted with the sight of a Dragon flying towards Whiterun. I could have sworn I saw a figure on its back. Then again, I had just sustained a major head injury, so I can’t be sure.

We made the difficult journey back to Riverwood, and were immediately put into the care of the merchant and his wife. Here, we would get some hard-earned rest.

—Franklin O'Reilly

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