"You must be the new initiate. The Speaker sent word that you were on your way. I'm the Matron of this Sanctuary. Obey me without question and I'm certain we'll get along just fine."
Of course, Matron."And this is for you - shrouded armor, the uniform of the Dark Brotherhood. You're one of the family now. You might as well look the part. And since you showed such experience with the Blade of Woe, take this as well. I expect great things, Initiate."
"We are all Brothers and Sisters, children of the Night Mother and our Dread Father. Even lone assassins need a family. Introduce yourself to the others. They can provide advice and information, even support for your more challenging contracts."
Will I get another contract soon?"Eager, are you? That's good. Then go and talk to Elam Drals. He handles lesser contracts for the new initiates. Prove yourself to him and more interesting assignments will follow. Welcome to the family."
I'll go and talk to Elam Drals."Explore the Sanctuary, meet the others. At least ones currently at home. I believe Green-Venom-Tongue, Kor, Mirabelle, Cimbar, and Tanek are avalable. When you're done, Elam should have a new task for you to accomplish."
Tell me more about yourself, Matron."The past isn't something we talk about here. For most of us, our lives didn't really begin until we were called to serve the Night Mother. And I was called at a very early age."
Have you always been the Matron of this Sanctuary?"No one joins the Brotherhood and immediately steps into a position of power. That's not how we do things. I had to prove myself, show that I was dedicated to the Night Mother and her tenets. I served for many years before I earned my title."
Did you advance though the ranks in this Sanctuary?"This Sanctuary has always been my home in the Brotherhood, if that's what you're asking. I've seen the Gold Coast change over the years. But that's enough questions about me. I wouldn't want to think you were taking my measure for some reason."
I heard something about a Dark Brotherhood member being murdered."Where did you ...? Ah, they were discussing that at the noble's estate, were they? Bastards! It's true. Someone has been killing our Brothers and Sisters. When the hunters become the hunted, it's like the world has gone askew."
Any idea who the murderer is?"We're investigating the matter. It's not unusual for our past to catch up with us, and it's not like we have a shortage of enemies. We'll learn the identity of this killer and then there will be a reckoning."
Who would dare challenge the Dark Brotherhood?"True, few have the audacity to openly oppose us, but there are many who would love to see the Brotherhood abolished. This feels ... different. Stay vigilant, keep your eyes open, and report anything else you notice as you execute your duties."
How do I advance in the Brotherhood?"A little ambition is good for the soul. But only a little. Complete the contracts assigned to you. It's as simple as that. Every life you send to Sithis pleases the Night Mother and raises your profile. Complete enough jobs and you'll be rewarded."
What happens as I advance?"We'll trust you with more difficult contracts, assign you more high-profile targets. The awards are greater, and we'll ask you to help with matters of importance to the Brotherhood. But don't get ahead of yourself. Start with Elam's contracts first."
"Once again the pious idiots of Kvatch dare to provoke the anger of the Dark Brotherhood. Such an insult cannot be allowed to stand unchallenged!"
What's going on in Kvatch?"As if the Grand Sermonizer didn't have enough vices to rage about, now she's preaching against the Brotherhood. She says we are weak, powerless. A toothless dragon that inspires ridicule instead of fear. These lies must be silenced—permanently."
I can go to Kvatch."Be wary. The Order of the Hour has increased its presence in Kvatch. Avoid the warrior-priests if you can. Meet up with Tanek and silence the priests that speak against us, including the Grand Sermonizer. That will put the fear of Sithis in them."
I'll go to Kvatch right away."Tanek will meet you in Kvatch. I expect the two of you to deal with the Grand Sermonizer and show the people of that hypocritical city the real power of the Dark Brotherhood."
Tell me more about this mission."The Grand Sermonizer and her priests spread lies about the Brotherhood for reasons I do not yet understand. Whether she seeks to insult us or acts upon some misguided tenet of faith, our response is clear. These impudent priests must die."
Who's this Grand Sermonizer?"She's one of the ranking priests at the Cathedral of Kvatch, right below Primate Artorius in the hierarchy. She won't be easy to find, however. Killing her subordinates may draw her out. Otherwise, rely on Tanek to locate the hole she's hiding in."
Who's Primate Artorius?"Primate Artorius leads the Cathedral of Akatosh in Kvatch. The Chanters and Sermonizers bow to his authority as the Chosen of the Dragon God, and even the Order of the Hour follows his commands. Pious and faithful, I find the man to be insufferable."
Do we really need to send two assassins to Kvatch?"Caution becomes the appropriate response after the deaths of two assassins, Initiate. But make no mistake. I expect you to assassinate the Grand Sermonizer. Tanek will be there to provide assistance, nothing more."
Do assassins often die when they go on missions?"Under normal circumstances, no. These recent attacks against us, however, have made circumstances far from normal. Concentrate on the Grand Sermonizer. That's your primary mission."
What's the Brotherhood's reputation like these days?"The common folk fear us, the political leaders tolerate us, and everyone who needs someone dead and can pay the cost hires us without hesitation. Our reputation remains strong. But these attacks by the Sermonizers. They're obviously up to something."
What do you think they're planning?"It could be anything. Certainly Primate Artorius and his priests have little love for the Brotherhood. I wonder, does the Cathedral to outlaw the Black Sacrament? Would they dare such an action? Regardless, these sermons are bad for business."
After returning back:
"Kor brought Tanek home, injured but alive. He told me you went after the Grand Sermonizer. Tell me, has the deed been done?"
The Grand Sermonizer and her priests are dead. We found Cimbar, tortured to death."Cimbar was one of our best. To allow himself to be captured like that … I didn't think that either the Grand Sermonizer or the Order of the Hour was capable of such a feat. Why go to all that trouble, I wonder?"
A warrior in black armor captured Cimbar. Said she wanted to learn the location of our Sanctuary."Black armor? I've heard rumors of such a warrior. But to seek the location of our Sanctuary? It appears we're at war with an unknown adversary. I need to think about this.
"I understand we have you to thank for Hildegard's safe return. Are you going to tell me what happened or do I have to torture Kor until he sings?"
Chanter Nemus tricked Hildegard and I killed him for it. It won't happen again."I hope you're right. But why do the Akatosh priests seem to be moving against us? First the Sermonizers, now this. Are they trying to take advantage of our recent setbacks or is there something more going on here? At least Hildegard is safe now."
"A contract has come our way that includes an unusual request. The client wants to meet the assassin assigned to carry out the task before paying our exorbitant fee."
I take it that's not the way things are usually done?"It's rare, but not unheard of. And the Black Hand agreed, so who am I to complain? I'd like you to deal with this one, Initiate. Go to Anvil Castle and meet with our client. I'm sure she's got a good reason for making a special request."
Who's the client I'm supposed to meet?"Oh, didn't I mention? It's none other than the self-proclaimed Provincial Governor of Anvil, the Pirate Queen Fortunata ap Dugal. I expect you to handle this like any other contract. Locate your target, plan your attack, and make your kill."
I won't fail you, matron."Go and see what the Pirate Queen has to say, Initiate. At the very least, it should be amusing to let her think she can order us around the way she does her Red Sails lackeys. I look forward to hearing all about it after the deed is done."
Any idea who the Provincial Governor wants dead?"Knowing Fortunata, it could be anyone. She's made as many enemies as she has friends since taking control of the Gold Coast. Probably just a noble who insulted her at one of her elaborate parties."
Can you tell me more about Governor Fortunata?"I'm sure there's a book about her around here somewhere. Oh, very well. Fortunata worked for the Gold Coast Trading Company before she used her influence and connections to become the Pirate Queen of the Abecean Sea."
How did a pirate queen become the governor of Anvil?"With a fleet of ships and an army of pirates. It helped that the region had been decimated by Varen's civil war. She was so bold as to claim the entire Gold Coast as her domain, but Count Carolus and Kvatch still have a little to say about that."
Anything I need to know about Anvil Castle?"It's crawling with Red Sails pirates. Fortunata keeps it locked up tighter than her dowry chest, but she is expecting you. Mirabelle knows the Anvil Castle well. She spends time there, pretending to be a servant so she can keep an eye on things."
Mirabelle spies on Governor Fortunata?"Certainly. And she's very good at it. For the eventual day when we have to move against the Pirate Queen, we'll have Mirabelle in place and ready to act. Of course, such a day may never materialize, but I believe in preparing for every contingency."
After completing both of the contracts:
"The Speaker brought me news of your success in Kvatch. And of the events that followed.
I must admit, I didn't expect you to return from Fortunata's den of pirates and brigands. Does this mean the Pirate Queen has been dethroned?"
Governor Fortunata is dead."Then I believe a new title is in order, Initiate. You've demonstrated skills and abilities that we will definitely need in the battles to come.
Stand tall, Assassin. You've earned your place in the Brotherhood and we're proud to have you among us."
"Assassin, it's time to collect a payment past due."
Of course, Matron, but why was Mirabelle so upset?"Mirabelle's outburst doesn't concern you, Assassin. Focus on the task at hand. Count Carolus still owes us for the Sacrament. He claimed to have information about the Black Dragon. Meet him at the ruins of Dasek Moor and find out what he knows."
Why does he want to meet at the ruins?"We're not sure, but that's where he requested to meet. He has a camp there which he's using for his own clandestine purposes. Before you go, talk to Mirabelle. She has information concerning the Count that could prove useful to your mission."
I'll talk to Mirabelle before I head out."Don't dawdle, Assassin. I gave you a job and I expect you to handle it."
Before I go and speak with her, can you tell me what Mirabelle was so upset about?"Curiosity isn't a trait I encourage, especially when it comes to matters inside the Sanctuary. Still, you'll find out soon enough, I'm sure. Mirabelle has allowed Tanek's injury and the deaths of Cimbar and the others to make her … emotional."
What do you mean, emotional?"The deaths hit her hard, especially Cimbar's. She craves revenge and it's making her anxious, reckless. That's dangerous for an assassin.
We need to be cold, precise, calculated. The heat of emotion leads to mistakes, and that gets people killed."
Was Mirabelle close to Cimbar?"As close as any lovers can be, I suppose. The recent deaths visited upon us have affected Mirabelle, but Cimbar's torture and murder, that one has left a mark. It's made her emotional, which is never a good thing in our business."
Can you remind me why we want to meet with the Count?"Have you been so inundated with contracts that you've forgotten? The Count performed the Sacrament and named Governor Fortunata, promising us gold and information on the Black Dragon. You completed our part of the bargain. Now it's the Count's turn."
Back from the Enclave:
"So, Assassin, was the Count's information worth all the trouble he put us through?"
The Count told me that the Black Dragon is the First Sword of the Order of the Hour."The Black Dragon is one of the Order? That puts everything that she's done to us in a new perspective. What else did you uncover?"
The Order of the Hours is using the Red Sails pirates to bolster its numbers."The Grand Sermonizer, the Chanters, now an army of religious warriors. It seems the priests of Akatosh have declared war against the Dark Brotherhood. Were you able to learn anything else about the Black Dragon?"
The Black Dragon and the Order have turned the old Enclave of the Hourglass into a headquarters."So the Count was using the ruins of Dasek Moor to spy on the Order of the Hour? Now if we only had some idea as to who's inside the Black Dragon's armor."
She's a woman named Lyra. She may have been a member of the Brotherhood. I recovered her journal."One of our Brothers and Sisters? I don't recognize the name, but there are other Sanctuaries. Why would our Sister hunt us? And why work for the Order of the Hour? Where's Mirabelle? I need her to do some digging."
Mirabelle's dead. The Black Dragon killed her."You encountered the Black Dragon? And you survived? But Mirabelle … why was she even there? I knew her recklessness was going to get her killed. And now we face a greater threat. For all that you learned, there's still so much we don't know."
I was able to sabotage a number of the Order's preparations."You did well to disrupt the Order's preparations and your reward includes a bonus to reflect that. I just wish we hadn't lost another Sister along the way. But that's all for now, Assassin. Speaker Terenus and I have much to discuss."
"You don't need to say anything. I see and hear more than you might think. This is my Sanctuary, after all. Go with your scaled Brother. Follow the journal's trail to its end. Just don't do anything foolish. I expect a full report when you return."
Any further instructions before I go, Matron?"Proper. I like that. Just remember to obey the Tenets. No matter what you see, no matter what you find, don't dishonor the Brotherhood. It's not our place to question the Night Mother's will or how the Black Hand carries it out."
Do you know something about Green-Venom-Tongue's former Sanctuary?"Of course. It was a fascinating situation, a rare example of the anger and fury of the Black Hand. Green-Venom-Tongue's former Sanctuary was purified, every member killed by order of the Black Hand. It's the only time I ever heard of such an event."
Why would the Black Hand purify a Sanctuary?"Isn't their will reason enough? Suffice it to say, they believed the Sanctuary harbored a traitor. To protect the Brotherhood and its secrets, every member was eliminated—save Green-Venom-Tongue, who was away at the time and deemed innocent."
Returning to the Sanctuary:
"Green-Venom-Tongue gave me his report on your little jaunt. What you discovered shows how the past sometimes comes back to haunt us. Since this concerns the Primate, Speaker Terenus and the Black Hand will determine our next move."
You're not angry? We never actually received permission to go to Venom's former sanctuary."Would you prefer punishment to praise, Assassin? Let the Black Hand decide how we navigate these troubled waters. For now, work your contracts. Sharpen your skills. The Black Dragon will pay for her transgressions, as will her master, Artorius."
"Word has come back from the Black Hand. It's time to do to Lyra Viria what she did to her Brothers and Sisters. It's time for the Black Dragon to die."
Do you want me to kill the Black Dragon?"No. Due to his seniority and knowledge of the target, that honor has been bestowed upon Green-Venom-Tongue. He's already tracked Lyra to Knightsgrave and is preparing to strike. I have a different task in mind for you."
How can I serve, Matron?"I want you to follow Green-Venom-Tongue and make sure the deed is done. I don't doubt his loyalty, but they were friends once. If he falters in the slightest, it will be his blood that stains the ground. No matter what, the Black Dragon must die."
If Green-Venom-Tongue doesn't kill Lyra, I will."Go to Knightsgrave and make sure that Green-Venom-Tongue succeeds. But if the Black Dragon manages to overcome him, then I expect you to end Lyra and make her pay for betraying her Brothers and Sisters."
Before I go, can you remind me about a few things?"Of course, Assassin. What details are unclear to you?"
What's Knightsgrave?"Knightsgrave is an Imperial ruin situated near the northwest shore of the Gold Coast. Legends claim it dates back to the founding of the Order of the Hour, but now it's nothing but tumbled stones and forgotten memories."
Why would the Black Dragon go to a place like that?"Whatever happened to Lyra after she purified her Sanctuary and went to Kvatch, it seems clear that she developed a powerful bond with the Order and their god. Green-Venom-Tongue believes she's gone there to contemplate her next move."
What have we learned about the Black Dragon?"Thanks to the efforts of you and Green-Venom-Tongue, we learned that the Black Dragon is Lyra Viria. Moreover, you discovered that Lyra was a member of the Dark Brotherhood, a Silencer who was part of Green-Venom-Tongue's former Sanctuary."
The same Sanctuary that she was ordered to purify?"Indeed. Perhaps that's where she acquired her taste for killing her Brothers and Sisters. After the purification, she received a contract to murder the current Primate's predecessor and consequently became Artorius's Black Dragon."
What's the Order of the Hour's lore in all this?"The Primate has rallied the Order against us. Between the problems with the Sermonizers and the Chanters, and the revelation that the Black Dragon is the Order's First Sword, it's clear that Artorius has a quarrel with the Brotherhood."
Didn't Artorius use us to eliminate his predecessor?"He had no problem performing the Sacrament, that much is certain. Artorius is dangerous, but Lyra remains the immediate threat. I believe you have somewhere to be, Assassin."
Back in the Sanctuary:
"The Black Dragon killed Green-Venom-Tongue, didn't she? Damn her to Oblivion's darkest realm and damn me for sending another Brother to his death!\n\nBut what else? Tell me the rest, Assassin."
I killed the Black Dragon"As it was ordered, so was it done. I'm impressed, Assassin. Lyra turned her back on the Night Mother and killed so many of the family, but you brought her down. The Void gathers all souls. But something else troubles you. Talk to me."
Primate Artorius knows the location of the Sanctuary. Brema revealed it before she died."The Black Dragon made our Sister talk? I'd bring Lyra back to life and kill her again if such was within my power! Artorius knows our location. As soon as he gathers the courage, he'll send the Order of the Hour against us."
Do you really think the Order of the Hour will attack the Sanctuary?"Eventually. When Artorius feels the time is right. But he'll hesitate to make the first move, to send his soldiers into our viper's nest. We have time to prepare. In the meantime, I'll confer with the Speaker. When you return, the Primate will die."
Astara Caerellius: "I don't want to hear another word about this." Mirabelle Motierre: "You think I can't avenge a fallen brother?" Astara Caerellius: "Enough." Mirabelle Motierre: "I deserve to be sent after the Black Dragon. This isn't the last you'll hear of it!" Astara Caerellius: "Of course it isn't."
Kor: "I think Hildegard may be ready for more … complex contracts." Astara Caerellius: "She can control when she changes?" Kor: "No, but I believe she and the wolf inside her have reached an understanding." Astara Caerellius: "I'll think about it." Kor: "Good. I'll look for contracts that require the body to disappear completely."
After "Questions of Faith":
Hildegard: "Matron? You never said anything about my leaving. The time I went to Skyrim." Astara Caerellius: "You're correct. I didn't." Hildegard: "Why not?" Astara Caerellius: "If I'd ordered your death, I would have ordered Kor's as well. But I couldn't allow our numbers to fall that low." Hildegard: "Oh. That … makes sense, I suppose …."
A Lesson in Silence
Hildegard: "The Grand Sermonizer is at it again, Matron." Kor: "Those loud-mouthed fanatics! It's time to teach them a lesson about the blessings of silence!" Astara Caerellius: "Enough! I'll decide how we respond to these malign sermons." Astara Caerellius: "Initiate, I have a task for you."
After accepting the contract:
Kor: "Initiate, I have my own contract in Kvatch. I'll join you and Tanek as soon as I'm finished." Hildegard: "Three blades on the same contract? Is that wise, Matron?" Astara Caerellius: "Just make sure the Grand Sermonizer dies, Initiate. That's my chief concern."
Astara Caerellius: "You're too close to this one, Mirabelle. Besides, the Speaker has already decided." Mirabelle: "Too close?! They killed Cimbar, Astara. I'm going to be a part of this whether you give the command or not."
After the quest:
Astara Caerellius: "The Black Dragon has struck again. Mirabelle is dead." Speaker Terenus: "This happened during the Assassin's mission? Did we learn anything or did Mirabelle die in vain?" Astara Caerellius: "We learned that the Black Dragon is the First Sword of the Order of the Hour. We recovered her journal and discovered her true name—Lyra." Green-Venom-Tongue: "Lyra? Hmm. Allow me to study the journal and its secrets will be revealed." Astara Caerellius: "I can't think of anyone better for the task, Brother." Green-Venom-Tongue: "I'll dig into the Black Dragon's journal immediately." Speaker Terenus: "See that you do."
A Ghost from the Past
At the end of the quest:
Astara Caerellius: "Of course I knew. If I didn't intend for that to happen, you'd be a backpack by now. Tell me what you uncovered." Green-Venom-Tongue: "All evidence points to one conclusion—Lyra is the Black Dragon, and she's working for Primate Artorius." Astara Caerellius: "The Black Dragon was one of us? She knows how we think, how we act. Artorius uses our own weapon against us!" Green-Venom-Tongue: "Give me the order, Matron" Green-Venom-Tongue: "Let my blade be the one that ends the Black Dragon's life." Astara Caerellius: "Patience, brother. Let me consider the ramifications. Your connection to Lyra could be a boon in this matter, but it could also be a detriment."
The Wrath of Sithis
After the quest:
Tanek: "So the New-blade brought down the Black Dragon? And I didn't expect you'd survive your first contract!" Hildegard: "All our Brothers and Sisters murdered. But we're safe now, right? The Black Dragon's dead." Astara Caerellius: "The Assassin ended the threat of the Black Dragon, but we won't be safe until Artorius joins her in the Void." Hildegard: "But the Primate speaks for Akatosh! Isn't that blasphemy?" Kor: "It can't be blasphemy if we don't adhere to that religion, Hilde" Tanek: "I want to plunge my dagger into him, once for every Brother and Sister he killed." Astara Caerellius: "Artorius will die. You have my word on that. And you'll each have a hand in the slaying. Now move. We have preparations to make."
Filling the Void
Elam Drals: "Astara! Assassin! This way." Astara Caerellius: "Is it locked like the last one? I should've brought a prybar." Elam Drals: "It's sealed up tight. Can't get through this way." Astara Caerellius: "Artorius really doesn't want any company, does he?"
In the Cathedral:
Primate Artorius: "And so, the assassins finally arrive." Astara Caerellius: "Time to die, Artorius." Artorius: "Time? Time is my domain, murderer, not yours."
Once Artorius is killed, Terenus will greet the Vestige back at the sanctuary. After giving them the reward, he will give the following speech:
Speaker Terenus: "Sweet Mother, sweet Mother, look upon your child and smile. For the unworthy have been cleansed in blood and fear. His/Her heart shines with the color of night. His/Her song sings with the music of life. His/Her gaze inspires fear and his/her hands grant the gift of death. The dread father acts through him/her. And his/her work has just begun." Astara Caerellius: "Step forward, loyal Brother/Sister." Speaker Terenus: "Step forward, my Silencer!" All Brotherhood Members: "Hail Sithis!"
"Ah, Initiate. I should be more pleased that the Grand Sermonizer is dead, but I can't help feeling that a storm gathers on the horizon. Elam mentioned that the contracts were stacking up. I suspect he'd appreciate your help, if you'd be so kind." – If spoken to, after talking to injured Tanek during "A Lesson in Silence"
"I don't suppose you have a little wolf trailing behind you? No? Seems Hildegard has gone missing again. If she seeks to abandon the Brotherhood, she'll have to be put down. I suppose I can give her a little more time before I write up the contract." – Before "Questions of Faith"
"So you decided to help find Hildegard, eh? Well, there's no shame in helping your Brothers and Sisters. Just don't let in interfere with your other duties, Initiate." – After agreeing to help Kor
"I need to think about these most recent events. Brothers and Sisters murdered. The priests of Akatosh preaching against us. It's like storm clouds are gathering over the Sanctuary, and I don't like it. But you have contracts to deal with, I believe." – After "Questions of Faith"
"Fortunata's death bodes well for the future of Gold Coast, but our problems remain. I need to consult with the Speaker and determine how best to collect the rest of what Count Carolus owes us. In the meantime, I'll leave you to your contracts." – After "A Special Request"
"If there are secrets to glean from the Black Dragon's journal, Green-Venom-Tongue will find them. Go and complete a contract or two. By the time you return, I'm sure we'll have decided on our next course of action." – Speaking to her immediately after "Dark Revelations"
"Green-Venom-Tongue studies that journal with deadly intensity, but he hasn't shared any of his findings with me. I trust him, but I can also tell when he's plotting something. Keep an eye on him for me, Assassin." – After "Dark Revelations"
"Ah, here comes our assassin, back from the wilds of Black Marsh, I see. Come, let's talk." – At the end of "A Ghost from the Past"
"Until word comes back from the Black Hand, there's little we can do about Artorius or his Black Dragon. Deal with your contracts until I hear from the Speaker, Assassin." – After "A Ghost from the Past"
"Not now, Assassin. We need to determine our best course of action to foil Artorius and the Order of the Hour. Come back later, after I've had an opportunity to meet with the Speaker." – After "The Wrath of Sithis"
"Wait. Someone's coming. We'll find you again, Assassin." – Shortly after defeating Wamasu Matriarch in the catacombs
"Assassin, strike true!" – During the fight with the Primate
"To the Void with you, Artorius! May the Dread Father grant you the welcome you so richly deserve!" – After executing the Primate
"Stand tall, Brothers and Sisters! We are the Dark Brotherhood!"
"Now, back to the Sanctuary, my assassins. We have friends to remember and a victory to celebrate."
"It seems like you're here more now that you're a Silencer than when you were my Assassin. It's good to see you, my friend." – After the ceremony
"Welcome, Silencer. Feel free to use our Sanctuary whenever you're visiting the Gold Coast."
"Silencer. I hope you carry the title with pride. You don't answer to me anymore, but we're happy to have you work with us whenever you wish."