"To Rauros, golden Rauros-falls, until the end of days."
Arkay dipped his golden hand into the cold waters of the Anduin. As he lifted it, a small pearly boat floated in the pool of water in his large palm. He looked upon the microscopic thing with sadness. His large fingers brushed his chestnut beard. Perhaps he could persuade the others…
Arkay lifted into the night air, going deep into the stars, where things turned to white and gold. The land of the Divines. He smoothed his beard and ruby red robes as he sat down on his throne, red and black with engraved figures of life and death.
His father, Akatosh, was seated across from him. His white hair outshining even the sun, his long white and gold beard falling low onto his sea foam robes which shimmered gold in the light. The circle of Gods was now complete.
Beautiful Mara held the hand of Akatosh, her delicate hands smoothing over his. Her soft eyes drooped sadly and she appeared to be looking down at her lush green dress.
Green and blue bearded Julianos looked upon Arkay curiously, and flowery blue Dibella whispered to Kynareth.
Dear Kynareth then looked up at Arkay, her pale blue skin glowing faintly and accenting her wondrous eyes.
"It seems you have a request of us." Akatosh began, speaking deeply, his dragon-like eyes flickering.
"I wish for an outside mortal to be brought into Tamriel." Arkay said.
The council was silent.
"Is he of significance?" Talos asked, taking a long draught of mead, letting it pour down his bronze beard.
"I believe so." Arkay concluded.
Curious, Stendarr asked who he was.
Arkay set the small boat on the table. The Divines looked on. A man with coppery hair lie inside clutching his sword. His pallor was almost blue, and many holes pierced his chest.
"This mortal is dead," Julianos said pointedly, "I see no significance in bringing him to Tamriel."
"Perhaps he has a greater purpose." Mara said gently.
"Agreed," Stendarr nodded, shaking his copper and blue mane, "He may be able to prove useful when things turn sour."
Arkay felt the glimmer of hope in his belly, "I would not ask if I did not deem it important, father."
Akatosh said quietly, pondering what was being said.
"Do you not think he will want to return home?" He asked.
"That will be his curse." Kynareth spoke quietly, "To walk under my skies in search of a home that is on a different plane. Bringing this man into an already hostile world." Her blue eyes watered, "I can already see him pining for his own soil. He will wish to return to Gondor, and will never have such pleasure."
"To some it would seem a punishment worse than death." Julianos said.
Arkay frowned, "This is a noble man; he deserves another life."
"What has he done?" Mara asked.
"Saved the lives of those he has cared for. The fate of the world he comes from is sealed, he helped to save it. I feel he will save Tamriel as well." Arkay said.
"The fate of Skyrim lies with another." Kynareth pointed out.
"It could be that he assists with this." Stendarr said.
Akatosh nodded, "It seems my firstborn has become too arrogant, his power will grow. I fear this. So go. Bring this man into Skyrim, see that he has each of our blessings, and may we watch over him in his quest. Be wary though, he may not pay heed to much we have to offer."
Arkay nodded, looking upon the man in the boat with a glimmer of both guilt and relief...
"Moonlight drowns out all but the brightest stars."
Lucia fumbled with the dead grass, dry yellow blades crumbling in her soft hand; she sighed sadly. It was still early in the morning, so no one in Whiterun had even come out to start the day. Lucia ran her tiny fingers through her golden hair, listening to the horses at the stable mumbling in their own language and pawing at the ground. She looked up into the distance, catching a glimpse of the Throat of the World before the sunrise. The moons were still out. It was this period of limbo that gave grace to the Skyrim landscape. The only comfort Lucia sought outside of the city. She stood up, dusting the grass off of her tattered skirt and set out to explore.
It had been a particularly warm start to the morning, which suited Lucia just fine. Her Imperial blood couldn't handle much of what the Native Nords could. It was this particular reason she sought out finding a hideaway once aunt and uncle kicked her out of her now dead mother's home.
No. She couldn't think about that right now. She had a mission.
Lucia followed the stream that ran past the Khajiit camp. Heading towards Whiterun's guard tower, she turned to the woods that pointed in the direction of Riverwood. The ringing of Nirnroot came closer as she neared a greater part of the river. She walked the log she set up like an expert, getting to the other side with ease.
There it was. Lucia smiled.
Hidden under a small cove was a small cave. There was only small remnants of wolves having been there decades ago, otherwise it was untouched by the world, save Lucia's handiwork. True, it wasn't very large, but it was warm and homelike.
Off in the back was a knobby little table, the one Belethor had thrown out just days ago. It was really the centerpiece of this makeshift home. It was roughly hewn and shaped, but it did its job easily. Atop the table was a carved crate housing rich dirt Lucia had taken from the farm. Sprouting from the rich soil was an abundance of blue mountain flowers. Next to the table was a cracked milk jug, sprouting dragon's tongue as tall as Lucia's leg. Hanging from the cave ceiling was moss and an iron rod that random ingredients such as frost miriam, garlic cloves, butterfly wings of all colors, and even a rare pheasant hung from. There was the rabbit she caught yesterday on a tree stump next to her, and in the center was a place to start a fire on cold Skyrim nights.
Under the table, Lucia pulled out a small strongbox with a rusted and broken lock. Opening it, she pulled out her doll, Freida, and a horsehair brush.
For the next half hour, Lucia brushed the doll's wiry golden strands, talking to it as though it knew every secret Lucia had. She wiped her sweating hands onto her tattered green dress and took a glance outside. The sun began to set its glow at the top of Dragon's Reach, meaning that the farmers would come out any second to tend to their growing crops. The First Planting was only a few weeks ago and already there were sprouts greeting the fresh Skyrim air.
Winter was always present in Skyrim, but some months were the worst. This was The Last Seed, meaning that it was still warm (relatively). By the time Heartfire and Frostfall passed, there would be snow almost everywhere. Lucia never really liked the snow, her Imperial blood never adjusted to the cold of Whiterun. However she heard from Brenuin that Winterhold was the coldest and snowiest province in Skyrim, so she supposed Whiterun wasn't too terrible to live in. If living is what you'd call it.
She shook these thoughts from her head again. Lucia scurried around her den to find her patched up apothecary satchel, perhaps she'll actually make some money today?
Setting Freida back in the strongbox, Lucia set her satchel over her shoulder and went outside. The wind blew around some dirt which rustled into Lucia's hair, making her frown. She couldn't stay clean to save her life in this wretched place. Lucia walked over reluctantly to the wider part of the river and splashed her face with the cool water. When she wiped her eyes clear, her jaw dropped.
Floating towards her was a lone white figure. She wasn't sure what shape it started taking, only that it kept hitting the river bank with every thrust the water sent forth.
Lucia dropped her satchel and ran towards the object, which seemed to grow substantially every time she took a step. It became clear it was a boat, however this boat was clearly not any ordinary boat.
It was considerably long and ivory white, like nothing could ever stain the surface of it. Lucia grabbed the side of it and pulled it closer, she found it to be much lighter than she would have ever expected. The wood it was made of was smooth. No splinter could have tried to find its way onto this vessel. Because it was surprisingly light, Lucia managed to get the boat halfway onto solid ground before she stopped cold, eyes widening at the sight she somehow missed.
There was a man. He didn't move but Lucia felt that if she even took a breath that he would lunge at her. He wasn't scary. Not really. Just intimidating. It was with all her willpower that Lucia uttered a slight "hello" to the man.
Was he dead?
She pulled the boat even more into the grass so that she could get a better look at this man.
His face was pale, and now, Lucia saw there was a glimmer of the sort of kindness a favorite uncle gives in his cheekbones and clear laugh lines. His hair was coppery with slight hints of the color of a dwarven ingot.
Lucia became brave and leaned over the side of the boat. His face became even more distinct. Covered in sweat, he glimmered like a sleeping God. His ragged and slight breathing was the only hint that gave away the fact he was indeed alive. Lucia reached out her hand to touch his forehead, for he seemed ridden with fever. She found her statement to be true.
Mustering up even more courage, the young girl started to drag the boat with the man towards her den. She knew in her bones he needed her help. Stopping at the entrance, Lucia ran back for her satchel. Then she came back to the boat and pushed it vertically until it descended slightly into her den. She could hear items in the boat moving about, but her priority was to get this thing inside.
Once it was inside, Lucia felt that it filled her den up nicely enough to leave her some room to move about.
Carefully, she took the man's oversized shield and rolled it into the corner behind her table. She was wary about his sword, for it was heavier than the boat, but she managed to get it onto the table along with a broken horn which she found to be quite pretty.
Lucia then huffed. She had to push the boat all the way to the back of the wall and started shimmying it so that it began to tip the man over onto the ground. Once he fell with a great thud Lucia set the boat back down and set about dragging the man closer to the middle of the room. She took his beautiful cloak out from under him and set it aside, then she put the only pillow she had under his head to give it elevation.
She wasn't sure how his armor worked, but she managed to at least get his surcoat undone. It was clear that he was sweating with the fever profusely and it made Lucia tear up. She had to remove his jerkin and chainmail in order to give him some cold air.
While the cool breeze flew in and tried to help bring down the intense fever of this man, Lucia set about making a fire to brew a tonic. The fire was small, but tenacious enough to warm up the small black kettle and start to boil the water Lucia ran to the river to fetch.
Carefully, she dropped in the pulled petals of the blue mountain flowers she had and then sprinkled a handful of wheat into the mixture. She knew from Arcadia that the juices from the flower mixed in and melted the wheat to create a healing elixir. As she stirred the mixture together she threw in more of the petals and wheat. The water seeped in and began to solidify into a thick syrup-type liquid. Lucia ran over to her table and grabbed a bowl to pour in the mixture. It wasn't much, but it would suffice for the night. She'd just have to barter for more later.
Lucia ran back outside, tore a piece of cloth from her skirt, and dipped it in the cool river water. Quickly she rushed into her cave and set the cold cloth on the man's forehead. His mouth seemed to contract at its sides, like the water was painful at first, but then his pale lips softened again. She sat his head and torso up, holding the cloth to his head and making the man sip down the elixir.
Once he drank down the liquid, Lucia sat him back on the ground. She ran her fingers through her gross blonde hair, already tired. But she stood up, stoked the fire, picked up her satchel, then looked at the man.
"You're going to be very hungry when you wake up." She said to the sleeping figure.
Lucia went outside, dusted herself off, then headed for the Whiterun walls.