The Journal of Astera Tirell (Modded Skyrim Special Edition)

Giron

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Yes, I know the Champion of Cyrodiil is canonically Sheogorath, but I don't consider Veya to have ever done the Shivering Isles. Of course, the whole Sheogorath/Jyggalag thing would've been fixed during Veya's time, but she herself didn't do it.

Honestly, giving her a connection to Helgen Reborn was a more recent addition to my headcanon, as Helgen Reborn is probably my absolute favourite quest mod for Skyrim. Though I did have to do a full read of both volumes of "The Keepers of Hattu: Real or Myth?" before putting details in.

The Blade of Dawn

"What?" Astera asked Marcus, shocked. "Veya... was a Keeper of Hattu?"

"More of an... honorary Keeper," Marcus replied. "Valerius and I were shocked when the Champion of Cyrodiil herself had shown up to help in what would've been a surprise assault by Aerindil. Without her intel, we might have been lost..."

Hammerfell, 4E 177

"Valerius Tiberius Artoria - the hero at the Battle of the Red Ring..."

"Who are you?" Valerius asked. "Are you one of Aerindil's lackeys?"

The Dunmer laughed. "That fool? Far from it. Who do you think's been sending you intel on the Dominion's movements so far?" She approached Valerius, a smirk on her face. "You're lucky I'm a sucker for near terrible odds." She put out a hand. "The name's Tirell. Veya Virian Tirell."

"The Champion of Cyrodiil?" Marcus asked. "You were said to have disappeared!"

"Well, you can calm your feathers, because I'm helping you out. I'm not the biggest fan of the Concordat, I can tell you that much."

Present day

"She managed to keep Aerindil's men from attacking the evacuating townsfolk, and even managed to push them back somewhat. When the battle was over, she disappeared, and said she would meet us at Stros M'kai when it was over. She continued to send us information, and while she didn't fight at the battle at Hattu Mountain, her intel was instrumental in making sure Valerius's plan came to fruition."

"Impressive..." Astera muttered. "So what happened then?"

"After the Second Treaty of Stros M'kai was signed, and the Dominion forces began to withdraw from Hammerfell, we received word of her being in the area and I went there to meet her... only for something terrible to have happened. She was betrayed by someone she called friend..."

Stros M'kai, 4E 180

"To an independent Hammerfell," Veya said, raising a glass with her companion. Her companion raised his, and they touched their goblets.

"Indeed." With that, the Dunmer and Imperial drank. When they put down their goblets, the Imperial lowered his eyes. "I'm sorry, Veya."

"Sorry?" she asked. "For wha-" Her voice cut short as she gripped her chest in pain. She glared daggers at her companion as one of her hands went to a dagger on her hip. "Poison... you *******... she made you do this, didn't she?"

"She has my family, Veya," he replied.

"I knew it..." Veya growled. "Curse that Thalmor *****. How could I have been so complacent?!" She looked back up at him. "What did she offer you?"

"I'm sorry... but she said she would release them if I... disposed of you."

"You idiot... you damned idiot."

"Huh?"

"You realise that she's probably already had them executed by now?" The imperial's eyes widened as Veya continued despite the pain. "They're Talos worshippers! You know they had no chance in Oblivion the moment they were captured after the Concordat was signed." She breathed in and out, her breath becoming ragged. "I could have helped you, you know... but it's far too late for that. For me..." Her eyes narrowed. "And for you."

At once, she pulled out her dagger and threw it. The blade sunk right between the eyes of the Imperial - whose eyes rolled back as he fell to the floor, dead. Veya turned her eyes to the door, just as they opened and a familiar face arrived.

"Veya?" she faintly heard Marcus's voice as she stumbled and fell. "Someone, get a healer, now!"

"Don't bother, Jannus," Veya said, her voice barely above a whisper now. "The poison is too deep in my system. Just... one thing..."

"What is it?"

"If... if you ever hear... of my counterpart... the Blade of Dusk... find her... and let her know of my fate..." She grimaced. "Let her know... if she ever comes across that ***** Elenwen... to drag her to the depths of Oblivion."

Present day

"After that, the poison took her life," Marcus said, shaking his head. "A coward's tactic." His eyes turned to Astera, whose whole body was shaking. Was it anger? Rage? Sadness?

"Elenwen..." the Blade of Dusk growled. "That ***** caused this?" She let out an angry laugh. "Ha! I met her at that damned Embassy of hers a couple months ago! She was right there! I could've ripped her throat out while I was there, but no..."

"To be fair, Astera," the blue Khajiit, Inigo, said. "You were searching for information on the dragons at the-"

"I know, Inigo! I know!" Astera shouted, before shaking her head. "Sorry, I shouldn't have shouted." Getting up, she began to walk to the door. "Sorry, Marcus, but... I need to go outside, clear my head, before I can give you an answer."

Marcus nodded. "That's okay."

"You want us to go with you?" Ignacia asked. Astera shook her head.

"No," she replied. "Don't worry, I won't be gone long."

"Alright." Ignacia nodded. With that, the Blade of Dusk went back into the snowy ruin of Helgen.
 

Giron

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Journal Entries 189-192

Entry 189
Last Seed, 4th, 4E 201

I don't know what to say. Veya a Keeper of Hattu? Poisoned by her own companion - who was threatened by Elenwen?

I knew something was fishy about her when we first met in the Embassy. Something in her eyes screamed "I know exactly who you are."

As I've thought about it, I have to admit that she was a little complacent... but the person who did it was someone she trusted... what if that happened to me? If Ellary, if Ignacia... if INIGO did something like that to me... I really don't know what to think.

Marcus has something else to say, but he let me gather my thoughts out here in the ruins of Helgen before he talks about the next step.


Entry 190
Last Seed, 4th, 4E 201

I've decided to continue helping Marcus and Valerius. Veya clearly trusted them, so I suppose I can trust them as well. We all have a shared hatred for the Thalmor now.

Anyway, Marcus wanted me to look for some guards - and had Patsy put up recruitment notices in a few cities: Solitude, Dawnstar, Whiterun, Riften, and Windhelm. I know I should go talk to Arngeir and see about the truce, but... my mind is still clouded. I'm not ready for that yet.

I know I need to do it soon, as Alduin will be getting stronger, but...

I don't know what to do.


Entry 191
Last Seed, 5th, 4E 201

First stop on our guard recruitment trip was the Bannered Mare in Whiterun. We met a Breton named Kindrick who didn't have a speck of combat experience from what I could tell, but somehow made it to Whiterun from High Rock all on his own. So... to give a little test to him - and every other recruit we'll come across at the other cities - he's got to get to Helgen on his own and speak to Korst. He should be fine, but we'll see how things go.

Anyway, we also met someone named Vilja... who I ended up deciding to help out along our journey. She's looking for ingredients to help release whatever's in her magical bottle or something.

Well, we're heading to Riften so... yeah. See how that goes.


Entry 192
Last Seed, 6th, 4E 201

Well, this past time in Riften has been eventful. Firstly, I stole a horse from Black-Briar's estate, then found an Argonian named Wanan-dun - who I promptly sent to Helgen - and ended up finishing the task for the Thieves Guild.

From there, Brynjolf sent me to Goldenglow Estate to steal some things and burn some beehives, which I managed to do swimmingly. Well, the strange dragon showing up helped a little - even though it was gone by the time I got back outside.

And now, Inigo and I have talked, and he realised that the person he thought I was was dead. He said that the person definitely used the mantle "Blade of Dusk", but realised it might have been someone else who decided to use the name.

But our now false past together doesn't matter. After our adventures together, I'm proud to call Inigo one of my greatest friends.
 

Giron

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I wanted to write something a bit different this time around, and I've had this in a google doc for a while, so I thought: the Thalmor MUST have a Dossier on Astera at this point. Why not write one up for her? I've seen other people make Dossiers for their own characters, so this makes it a bit interesting.

Thalmor Dossier: Astera Tirell

Name: Astera Tirell

Status: Observe with great caution (do not engage), high priority, Emissary Level Approval

Description: Dunmer Female, unknown age, short hair. Mainly wears strange otherworldly armour. Often accompanied by an Imperial, Breton, and blue Khajiit.

Aliases: Dragonborn, Blade of Dusk

Known allies: Inigo (Blue Khajiit), Ellary (Breton, surname unknown), Ignacia Deflagratio (Imperial from Cheydinhal). Appears to have connections in Morrowind and High Rock. Believed to have connections to Veya Viran Tirell. (Blade of Dawn, see separate dossier)

Background:

Astera came into our radar after the Second Treaty of Stros M’kai when she moved from Ebonheart to Skyrim. Our sources indicate her being a former member of the Morag Tong - operating under the alias of the “Blade of Dusk” - a similar name to the Blade of Dawn. It is believed the two are related somehow. Further studies by our sources seem to indicate some lineage to a mythical figure known only as the "Vestige", which itself seems highly unlikely.

Before being revealed as the Dragonborn, she seemed to express disdain towards the Thalmor - and cleared out Northwatch Keep, as well as agents assigned to eliminate her. She appears to have only gotten more powerful after this revelation. Many of our agents have noted her strange ability as similar to Ulfric Stormcloak.

She owns a ship known as the Scarlett that travels along the Sea of Ghosts, and appears to have the ability to teleport to that location on demand. Attempts to enter the ship have failed, due to strong resistance on the ship. It is believed that the Scarlett makes port in a cavern west of Northwatch, however, these rumours have not been followed on.

She is armed and accompanied by strong fighters. To approach her is to earn a quick death by her dual daggers or being riddled with arrows. However, if possible, means to capture or eliminate her should be analysed, discussed, and, if possible, put into action.

Further notes:

Astera infiltrated the embassy and stole a multitude of important documents - including our dossiers on Stormcloak, Delphine, Esbern, and our reports on the Dragons - and killed all the officers and justiciars stationed there. She did not seem to have any knowledge of Veya’s demise by our hands, and was somewhat amicable upon first meeting with the First Emissary. As well, our operatives in Riften were also slain, and Esbern (see separate dossier) seems to have escaped - their location is unknown.

She was last seen with an Imperial man and her companions heading to Helgen, for reasons unknown. There is not enough information to determine the Imperial’s identity, other than the name “Marcus”.

Notes on companions:

Inigo:
A blue Khajiit, seemed to have met Astera in Riften and has travelled with her ever since. Wields a bow and sword made from Ebony. Is known to make many insults. Do not succumb to these.

Ellary: A Breton wearing a strange yellow fox mask, appeared with Astera near the Tall Mast Tavern south of Dragon Bridge. Seems to wield a dagger and a strange wooden shield.

Ignacia Deflagratio: An Imperial from Cheydinhal, accompanied Astera to the strange ruin known as Morwitijaal, and has been travelling with her ever since. A strong fighter, wielding a strange helix-like blade that can fire some strange energy beam.
 

Giron

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Journal Entries 193-196

Entry 193
Last Seed, 10th, 4E 201

Spoke to a short Nord named Herd in Windhelm about recruitment, as well as two Redguards in Dawnstar. We then stopped at Morthal on our way to Solitude.

Once there, I spoke to an... interesting fellow named Hoth - seems like a bounty hunter for hire. Well, I hired him, but I'm unsure what to really do with him. He seems quite strong, but... well, we'll see.

Anyway, in Solitude was a Khajiit named Joto. After sending him over to Helgen, I took the carriage myself and spoke to Korst. Now, it's time to evaluate these recruits. Unfortunately, my merry band will only get the way of it.

First up is the Argonian. We're to take out some vampires west of here. Let's see how well he does.


Entry 194
Last Seed, 11th, 4E 201

Wanan-Dun did very well... considering the circumstances. That being that those vampires gave ME a run for my money. There was even a vampire that had some sort of symbol on their clothing - probably a vampire clan. I'm not sure which. I did find another word of power.

Anyway, next up is Joto. We're headed to Brittleshin Pass to deal with Necromancers.

Should be fine... now if only Korst can get Herd to stop wasting Bomb Arrows on targets... I don't like waking up to the sound of explosions.


Entry 195
Last Seed, 11th, 4E 201

Ugh, ice spells. Ice spells, Ice spells, Ice spells. I've had it up to here with them. On the plus side, Joto got his dog.

Honestly, Joto could have done a lot better... but he could've done a lot worse, considering. Anyway, apparently the bandits that Val managed to get rid of are camping in Pinewatch. Fun times...

Next on the evaluation list is Herd, the short Nord. No doubt after him will be the two Redguards... I shudder to think what will go down with them.


Entry 196
Last Seed, 12th, 4E 201

Well, it wasn't TOO bad, I guess. Herd held his own rather well... all things considered. Honestly, all of them need more training, but against what they fought... they did well.

Anyway, next is Orianthi, the Redguard woman. Someone wants us to clear Upper Embershard Mine. I didn't realise there WAS an Upper Embershard Mine. Well, I don't know everything about Skyrim.

Better grab her and see where this leads.
 

Giron

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Journal Entries 197-201

Entry 197
Last Seed, 12th, 4E 201

Dremora. Why did it have to be Dremora? They took over the mine... and the warlock's powers messed with me a bit. I'll admit, having Oriantha there helped. She did well.

As well, we helped the spirit of a child named Hanna by killing the warlock. The people of the mine might be able to rest in peace now.

For now, it's off to another dig with her brother, Sorian. Time to see what the second Redguard is made of.


Entry 198
Last Seed, 13th, 4E 201

Sorian surprised me. Though he seems to think I'm as harsh a taskmaster - perhaps even more - than Korst. I suppose... considering how many Draugr I left to him. He made it out okay, though.

Though Staadomar also had a Dragon Priest screwing things up. Thankfully, we took care of it.

Just one more recruit to go... Kindrick. Korst has got intel about the previous bandits making preparations for an attack from Skybound Watch.

Time to hit them by surprise... and see what the Breton to got from High Rock on his own has managed to learn.


Entry 199
Last Seed, 13th, 4E 201

There were more bandits than we thought. At least they're gone now. Kindrick did... surprisingly well, considering the numbers we were facing.

We got back and reported the news to Korst. Seems the guards of Helgen are going to continue training, to keep the defence up while Helgen is rebuilt.

Now then... I suppose I've earned a bit of reprieve before we continue on our journey. Apparently, Marcus decided to give the central tower to me as a 'home' or 'base of operations' similar to the Scarlett here in Helgen. And Patsy is apparently a taxidermist, who knew? Well, time for a rest, then onto more important things.


Entry 200
Last Seed, 14th, 4E 201

I finally decided to return to High Hrothgar and speak with Arngeir. Now... we need to head to Windhelm and Solitude... and see if we can't get Ulfric and Tullius to the negotiating table.

I've been putting this off too long. Alduin won't wait for me to invade Sovngarde to fight him. The World-Eater never rests... but I've been prancing around all of Skyrim doing other things.

Time to settle this once and for all. Marcus and Val know what I'm talking about, and told me to represent Helgen's interests during this meeting if at all possible. I'll see what I can do on that front, but that depends on the other two parties...


Entry 201
Last Seed, 14th, 4E 201

We've spoken to both Ulfric and Tullius. I expect them to move towards High Hrothgar in the morrow. We'll be there waiting for them, I suppose. Depends on how quickly the delegations move from Windhelm and Solitude over to Ivarstead.

For now, though... I'm just hoping this all goes to plan. Alduin is by far the bigger threat right now, and if he isn't stopped soon...

There won't BE a world to have a civil war in.

Ugh, I need to clear my thoughts. Some meditation at the High Hrothgar Library should do me some good...
 
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