The Adventures of Torvaar Stornson, As Recorded In His Journal – Part 2

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—Morning Star, 11th, 4E 202—

Inigo and I met a talking dog called Barbas just outside of Falkreath. Turns out his master is Clavicus Vile, the Daedric Prince. He asked me to help reunite the two of them. I don’t know why I said yes, honestly. Every Nord knows not to mess with the Daedra, but I already possess Dagon’s razor, and Hircine’s ring. Reuniting a dog with his master doesn’t seem so terrible. We’re to fetch an axe for Vile before he’ll take Barbas back. Tomorrow Inigo and I travel to Solitude, and then on to Rimerock Barrow. Hopefully this delay won’t anger Kodlak. I need to return these heads to him as soon as possible. They’re starting to stink. I wonder if salting them would help.

—Morning Star, 14th, 4E 202—

Kodlak is dead. Vilkas blames me, and he’s right. If I hadn’t delayed… We are going to avenge him. Inigo will stay here. This is for Vilkas and I alone. Hunger, thirst and fatigue don’t matter now. The Silver Hand will die. All of them.

—Morning Star, 15th, 4E 202—

It was a long, silent trip up to Dawnstar. Vilkas will not speak to me, save for reminders of our mission. I don’t blame him. I miss the old man. It hurts. It’s not the first death I’ve had in my life, but it’s the worst one. I hope Vilkas will forgive me. He looked at Kodlak as a father, and honestly so have I. He accepted me into the fold when the others were hesitant, if not downright against it, and since my father was mostly an absent figure in my life, he filled a role I didn’t know I was lacking.

We’ll stay in the inn here until nightfall. Two Companions travelling causes a stir, but not much wariness or suspicion. Mostly I’ve found people are excited and curious whenever I come to town. Our grim looks must put them off. So far everyone has left us alone, save for the innkeeper, who greeted us out of politeness rather than wanting to actually speak to us.

I’ve painted my face the colour of blood in preparation. Tonight, the Silver Hand will meet its end. Permanently.

—Morning Star, 16th, 4E 202—

It is done. I killed the Silver Hand and ate their hearts. Their deaths have only made me stronger. The irony isn’t lost on me. They were killed by the very beast they hunt so passionately. Now that they’re gone and Vilkas and I have the fragments of Wuuthrad again, it’s time to return to Jorrvaskr and lay Kodlak to rest.

He died before he could seek out the cure for his beast blood. Now he’s doomed to run through Hircine’s Hunting Grounds for eternity. I wish there was some way I could save his spirit. I wish I could bring him back to life. I don’t know what will happen now. Kodlak was not in charge exactly, but he was our leader regardless, and everyone looked up to him. He may as well have been our commander. Now we’re left without his guiding hand. Someone will need to take up his mantle. Maybe Vilkas. He’s the best suited for the job.

We’ll catch a few hours’ sleep in Dawnstar, if we can, then head back to Whiterun. Only the gods know what is in store for us now.

—Morning Star, 17th, 4E 202—

Kodlak has been laid to rest. The Circle and I journeyed to Ysgramor’s tomb and fought his beast spirit. With it defeated, he can now rest peaceful in Sovngarde.

Before his spirit left, he named me Harbinger. The others have accepted this, but I don’t want it. I still blame myself for his death. Vilkas is better suited to leadership than I am. He knows the history, he knows how to command minds and hearts. I’ve pushed my responsibility onto him. Call me a coward. Maybe I am one.

I can’t stay in Jorrvaskr. The memories are too fresh and too painful. Inigo and I will travel to Solitude and join the Legion. Maybe war will help me forget. Maybe it’ll just give me new horrors to remember. Maybe one day I’ll be able to come back to Jorrvaskr and walk with pride.

—Morning Star, 23rd, 4E 202—

Inigo was with the group of bandits who robbed and left me for dead. It wasn’t until now that I really recognized him. My memories of that fight, if it can really be called that, have always been hazy, but the more time I spend around Inigo the clearer bits of it become. It’s hard to forget one khajiit among a band of humans. I’ve made my peace with it. I don’t know how I couldn’t forgive him when I still can’t quite remember what happened. It’s harder for him to forgive himself. I understand this.

I’ve come to realize that it’s not my fault that Kodlak died. Whether I was there or not it still might have happened, but I’m not ready to forgive myself for not being there when we were attacked. Having a purpose helps.

I think the Stormcloaks plan to move on Whiterun. I’ve been acting as a messenger, and it seems like the jarl is finally willing to accept aid from the Legion. Good. I met Ulfric Stormcloak and didn’t like him one bit. The Empire might not be perfect, but at least we’re not a group of racist thugs led by a pompous pig.

—Sun’s Dawn, 4th, 4E 202—

Many of the Holds have fallen to the Legion following the Battle of Whiterun. The Rift is proving more resistant than the others, but it won’t last forever. Once we’ve secured Winterhold, it will be time to take the battle to Windhelm itself.

My mind is busy, but at the end of the day I’m so tired it hardly matters. Inigo is helping me to work through my grief. He dealt with something similar after all, since he lost both his birth and adoptive parents as well as his twin brother. He understands more than anyone, except maybe Vilkas, how I feel right now.

It’s hard to not blame myself. At least this war is keeping me occupied.

Kat Haas

Kat Haas is a recent History graduate living outside Philadelphia. When she's not worrying about getting into grad school she spends her time writing, or playing and modding several video game genres.

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