Using the castle return scroll, I arrived back at Solstheim Castle, and headed straight for the lab.

To cure paralyzation, I needed corkbulb root, netch leather, scamp skin, and willow anther, any two of which would make a good cure for what was ailing me.

I went to the jars on the wall, and to my disappointment, found I had only some of the ingredients needed.

Definately not a good day in the lab.


I put what I had together, and managed to come up with only 4 more cure paralyze potions. That would make a total of 6 in my inventory.

There was not enough time to go hopping around to see if other alchemists had more ingredients.

I did have a huge number of ingredients to increase both my magicka, wisdom, and willpower.

Then it dawned on me: Willpower! If I could increase my willpower several times over, I might be able to resist the paralyzing spells directed at me.

I used as many ingredients as I could and came up with several dozen potions that fortified my ability to cast spells a hundred-fold for several minutes at a time. I put other ingredients together and came up with potions that fortified my wisdom and magicka to unbelievable numbers, also for several minutes at a time.

I smiled to myself. This could work.


I had several enchanted items called "Rings of Leaches", good for only 1 or 2 shots at a time, but could drain the life out of most creatures and provide it to me. I would need more of this. I headed to my lab's desk, and took just about every filled soulgem I had, along with every one of the finest quality amulets I had and stuffed them in my pockets.


Stopping off in the armory, I retrieved as many silver, paralyzing, sun, thunder, and frost arrows as I could carry.

I also grabbed a few spell scrolls for good measure.

Using the Recall spell, I ended up in Caldera, and headed to the Mages Guild office there.

I mused over the children playing in the street, noting how totally unaware they were that just a short distance away, a terrible evil was lurking, waiting to either kill them all, or enslave them to the Sixth House.


Folms Meril was very helpful, enchanting the amulets I had brought to their full capacity.

It was sad that I didn't know of any "resist paralyze" spell of my own. Had that been the case, he might have been able to give me something that would do that in a constant effect.


My business with Folms concluded, I headed outside, and changed into a cliffracer, heading over the mountain range to the east, and back to Ghostgate.


Yet another ashstorm greeted me on the way back to Ghostgate.

I had lost my way for a short while, until I found part of the Ghostfence. All I had to do there was simply follow it and eventually it would lead me directly to my destination.


One cliffracer after another tried attacking me, each one of them losing the battle.

At last, I saw my destination, and slowly drifted back to the ground.


Changing back into my very handsome self, I headed back to the Tower of Dusk.

At least this time, no cliffracers came down from the sky to give me an argument.


Laurenna greeted me with a big hug. I showed her the new amulets that I had made up, and gave her a big bunch of arrows.

I was tired, so I decided to take a nap for an hour. At my age, naps are important.


Both well-rested, refreshed, and ready to go, we got our stuff together and prepared to leave.


"We are going to Dagoth Ur's very own base this time." I cautioned Laurenna. "Make sure you stay sharp at all times, and make sure those arrows are ready."

"Do you think we'll make it there before nightfall?" she asked.

I looked up at the sky, and through the dust and ash, I could see the faint outline of the sun, fighting it's way through.

"We should make it there before nightfall." I said, adding "If our luck holds out."


Through the dust and ash, we made out way to the outer gate control.

"Sure you want to go back in there?" I said, almost joking.

"You bet." she replied. "Let's get this over with."

I tapped the switch, and the outer gate opened for us.


We made our way to the middle control, and heard the outer gate close behind us, locking us inside.

The ashstorm was pushing us back, trying desperately trying to keep us out, yet it wasn't going to happen, not the last time, nor this time.

This time, we'd make it to Dagoth Ur's base, or die trying, and no amount of complaining from Red Mountain was going to stop us.

I took 5 each of the potions that would fortify my wisdom, magicka, and willpower. The effect was almost immediate. I felt like I could take on an army.

With a light touch of the switch, the inner gate open, gears squealing in protest, as if to announce our presence to all the creatures of this blighted, disturbed, and evil place.

Good, I thought to myself. Bring them on.









PAGE 133