Playing Spy

It was very late when I arrived at the Imperial City. I should have sought out Baurus, but after closing another Oblivion Gate and arriving in the city at nearly midnight, I decided I needed to crash for a few hours of sleep.


I was told to seek Baurus at the Luther Broad's Boarding House. I had actually stayed there a few times before setting out on my journey around Cyrodiil. It wasn't a bad place to stay if you're short on coin.


I walked in to the boarding house and looked around for Baurus. I didn't recognize him at first. He was sitting at the bar having something to eat. No armor at all. I guess I expected him in full uniform, as opposed to civilian clothes.

As I approached, he turned, recognized me, and without a word, motioned me to sit next to him.

I did as he instructed.


"Don't say a word." he said, in a very soft tone. "Don't say anything. Just do what I say."

I felt a quiver of excitement. I didn't know if it was the implied danger, or just playing spy, but it was exciting, non-the-less.

"Listen." he said, after a few bites on a piece of bread. "I'm going to get up in a minute and walk out of here. That guy in the corner will get up and follow me. You follow him."

I nodded quietly in acknowledgement, confirming my understanding.


Baurus finished a few more bites of his meal while I ordered up a drink for myself. He finished his breakfast, then got up and walked to a door that lead to the cellar of the boarding house. As soon as the door closed behind him, I heard the other man that Baurus had mentioned earlier put down the paper he had been reading, got up, and headed to the same door, just as I had been told he would do.

As he opened the cellar door, I tossed a coin on the table to pay for my drink, got up, and followed this spy into the cellar.

As soon as the door closed behind me, I could hear swords being drawn. Instantly, I drew my own and lept down the last four steps to the landing. The spy was threatening Baurus.

I shouted a warning to surrender. Instead, he turned to attack!

He lunged at me, but I parried his blow with my own sword. He reached up to swing again, but stopped, then fell to the ground, dead at the end of Baurus' sword.


"You're better at swordsmanship now than you were some time back when we first met." he said. "Well, I've had some practice in the last two months." I replied. "It shows." he said. "Search his body. I'll keep an eye out in case any of his buddies think about showing up.

I checked the body of the now dead spy, finding a few pieces of gold in his pocket, a healing potion, and a strange book. It had the title "Mythic Dawn Commentaries", a book I had never heard of before.    


"Baurus, I found this book on him." I said, showing it to him. "Good work." he replied. "Sorry about the cloak and dagger part earlier." he said, smiling. "I'm glad to see you, by the way. You just caught me at a bad time."

"Well, maybe just the right time." I replied. "What have you learned?"

"Not good news." he said, looking a little worried. "Those assassins who killed the Emperor were part of a daedric cult known as the Mythic Dawn."

"Mythic Dawn?" I replied. Same as the title of the book I had found.

"Yes." he said. "Apparently they worship the Daedra Lord Mehrunes Dagon. I've been tracking their agents in the Imperial City. I guess they noticed."

"More than noticed." I said. "They have the Amulet."

Baurus' look changed from worry to concern. "What?" he exclaimed. "They took it from Jauffre? Things are worse than I had thought."

"You may be right." I explained. "They attacked Weynon Priory. Several of the brothers were slaughtered. Jauffre survived."

"Well, I'm glad he survived." he replied. "Is there any good news?"

"I believe so." I said. "I found Uriel's heir. His name is Martin."

"Oh, thank Talos he lives. Martin Septim, you say. Well, we will restore him to the throne! It is the sworn duty of all Blades."

"Well, I am glad I was able to give you some good news, at least." I said. "What should our next move be?"

Baurus thought for a moment, paging through the book we had found. "You're in the Mages Guild, right?" he asked.

"Yes, I've been practicing and getting recommendations to enter the University here in the city." I replied.

"Perfect opportunity for you." he said with a wink. "You know, there's a scholar at the Arcane University." he said. "I believe "Tar-Meena's her name. She's supposed to be an expert on daedric cults." He handed the book back to me. "Why don't you take that book to her and see what she makes of it?"

"Certainly." I replied. "I have business there anyway, having received all the necessary recommendations needed to enter the university."

"Perfect." he replied. "You head on over there. I'll keep running down leads on the Mythic Dawn network. If you learn anything, you can find me at Luthor Broad's. May Talos guide you."


I looked at the book that Baurus had handed back to me. Some of the passages seemed to proclaim something odd and powerful, while other paragraphs made absolutely no sense at all. I really would have to have an expert examine this book closely. I was sure there was some kind of clue hidden somewhere, but the grumbling of a guar's stomach would make more sense than some of this stuff.


The Arcane University. Several times I had come here to purchase a few spells, but was always locked out of the greater segments of it. Now that I finally had recommendations from each of the Mages Guild offices in Cyrodiil, the rest of its resources would finally be available to me.


I arrived at the main entrance, presented my recommendations, and was immediately awarded the Robe of the Apprentice. I asked for the location of Tar-Meena, explaining that I had some important business to discuss with her.


I was directed to a huge library. After asking again, I was directed to an Argonian that was busy reading a book. This was Tar-Meena.

"Ah," she hissed, "You must be the one I got the messssssage about. How can I help you?"

"Can you tell me about the Mythic Dawn?" I asked.

Tar-Meena hissed. "You know of them?" she replied. "One of the mossssst sssecretive of all the daedric cultsssss. Not much isssss known about them. They follow the teachings of Mankar Camoran, whom they call the Masssster. A sssshadowy figure in hissss own right."

"I found one of their books." I said, showing it to her.


"Ah, yessssss." she said, looking over the tome. "The 'Commentariessss on the Mysterium Xarxessss,' wonderful!" She looked over a few pages, then looked back up at me. "You have a sssscholarly interesssst in daedric cults, then?" she asked.

"I just need to find the Mythic Dawn." I replied, trying not to give too much away.

"Find them, eh?" she said. "I won't poke my nose any further. Official business and all that. I'm used to working the with Blades, so don't worry. Ssssay no more. In any cassse, finding them won't be easy." She looked over a few more pages of the book, then continued "I've studied Makar Camoran's writings a bit myself, at least those that I could find. It is clear from the text that Mankar Camoran's 'commentaries' come in four volumes, but I've only ever seen the first two books. I believe that his writings contain hidden clues to the location of the Mythic Dawn's ssssecret shrine to Mehrunes Dagon. Those who unlock his hidden path have proven themselves worthy to join the ranks of the Mythic Dawn cult. Finding the shrines is the first test. If you want to find them, you'll need all four volumes of the 'Commentaries'."     


"Where can I find these books?" I asked.

Tar-Meena walked over to one of the bookshelves, and after a little searching, pulled a dusty book from the top shelf, blew the dust off the top of it, and handed it to me. "Here." she said, "You can have the library's copy of Volume Two. Treat it gently, if you please."

I thanked her for the book. "How would I go about finding the last two volumes?"

"As I've said, I've never even seen the third and fourth volumes." she replied. "Perhaps you should try the First Edition , over in the Market District. Phintias, the proprietor, caters to specialist collectors. He may have an idea of where to locate these books."

"Thank you. I'll give him a try." I said. "Can you tell me about the author?"

"Ah, Mankar Camoran." she replied. "The supposed leader of the Mythic Dawn cult. He wrote the 'Commentaries on the Mysterium Xarxes.' The 'Commentaries' are contemporary with Tiber Septim, over 400 years ago, so he is unlikely to still be alive....although you never know."

"What is this Mysterium Xarxes?" I asked.

"It is the holy book of the Mythic Dawn." she replied. "Sssssupposssidly written by Mehrunes Dagon himself. If it exists, it would be an artifact of great - and evil - power."

"What do you know about this group "Mythic Dawn?" I asked.

"From what I have learned," she replied, "They worship the daedra lord Mehrunes Dagon, according to the teachings of their leader, Mankar Camoran. No one knows how widespread the cult is, or where their shrine to Mehrunes Dagon is located."


I thanked Tar-Meena for her time and assistance. Before heading over to the First Edition, I decided to explore the rest of the Arcane University's offices. I found a few altars which allowed me to enchant a few items and create a few spells of my own. Of course, I would have to test these spells to ensure that I had mastered them before using them in battle.


I went back to my room at the hotel to think about things for a moment. I took out one of the two sigil stones I had captured from Oblivion. I had not actually had a chance to look at this mysterious item capable of keeping an Oblivion Gate open.


I got a little closer to it. The stone seemed to spin and glow, floating just an inch over the top of a case I had put it on. I wondered just how this thing worked, how it was made, how it functioned, and what else it was good for. I glared at it. This thing helped to destroy Ald'Ruhn, my family. I couldn't help but hate it. I gritted my teeth, feeling anger well up inside of me.


And then suddenly, I felt like it was making me want to hate, want to be angry, as if this little stone embodied every ounce of negative energy within me, reflecting it back to me in a mirror of everything bad or evil within a person.

I got up, put the stone away, deciding to study it again under better circumstances. In the meantime, I decided to get some sleep. Tomorrow I would head over to the First Edition and see if I could locate the other two volumes of this strange set of books.


COMING UP: Finding the MissingVolumes

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