"I came here to study the history of Solstheim, but it's the Skaal who intrigue me the most."

Tharstan is an Elder Nord historian who can be found in the Skaal Village studying the Skaal. Until the quest The Fate of the Skaal has been completed, he is one of the villagers building a temple around the Wind Stone.


Lost LegacyEdit

Tharstan asks the Last Dragonborn to aid him in the expedition of a Nordic ruin.


The Fate of the SkaalEdit

"I do enjoy sharing stories of my travels in Tamriel with young Nikulas."

You're not one of the Skaal? "Oh no, most certainly not. I'm here to learn about the history of Solstheim. Solstheim is a fascinating place, but we know so little about its past. There are many mysteries that remain unsolved."
What did you make of that stone structure everyone was building? "Yes, that was a most disturbing experience. But to answer your question, the architecture was strange, almost otherworldly. Given that, and the considerable power it must have taken to affect our minds so completely, it would suggest the work of a powerful mage. Either that, or perhaps a daedra. If so, then may the nine protect us."
A daedra? "Powerful and malevolent entities who make their home on the plane of Oblivion. Some of the more powerful among them can exert their influence within our world, and when they do, men inevitably suffer."
How long have you been studying the Skaal? "Well, let me think... I suppose it's been nearly a year now. My goodness, how the time has flown!"
And the Skaal don't mind being studied? "Well, not so far. They think I'm a bit strange, but they seem to tolerate me. In fact, they've been very accommodating. Hospitable, even. They seem happy to talk about their traditions and history."
Show: Lost Legacy
At Skaal Village:

"I heard from Deor how you went in search of Baldor. That was very brave, and in fact, that's just the kind of courage I'm looking for."

Let me guess, you need me to do something dangerous. "Quite right! Quite right! This, however, is paying work. Allow me to explain."
I helped a man in need, that's all. "Modest as well as brave. Most admirable! I can see why the Skaal think highly of you. Yes I think you're just the adventurous sort I need. I have a job offer for you."
"As a scholar of history, I've always found Solstheim to be most intriguing. I've made many forays into the ancient ruins that cover the island. I've come to know those ruins so well, I could draw you a map from memory. That's why I noticed the new passage the moment I laid eyes on it."
A new passage to what? "An old tomb, I think. It must have been opened by an earthquake that accompanied one of the Red Mountain's eruptions. I'd love to have a closer look, but those old ruins can be dangerous and I'm no adventurer. I'll pay you to watch my back down there. I'll be heading back there soon. If you're interested, meet me at the ruins and we'll see what we can find. Now I'm off to pack for the expedition!"

In Vahlok's Tomb:

"Remarkable, isn't it? This tomb has been hidden for... well, who knows how long. May centuries, I would think. There are some sealed doors up ahead. Perhaps you can figure out how to get them open. I've had a look around and the only interesting thing I've found is this inscription here, and a switch below it. Now, I'm not sure if you can read the dragon language, but this seems to be a riddle of some sort. "A sacrifice will bring you closer to that which you seek." I wonder what it means. Mind your step. There seem to be some corpses strewn about on the floor here. I wonder if this fire pit has anything to do with the riddle. You go ahead and see what you can figure out. I'll look around and see if I can find anything of use."

If approached again:

"Who knows what dangers await us in this place."

Could you repeat that inscription? "Yes, of course. It is "A sacrifice will bring you closer to that which you seek.""
Do you have any insights to share about this puzzle? "Hmm... Perhaps something is meant to go into the fire?"

"Let's continue exploring, then."

After getting a draugr into the fire pit:

"Well done! It looks like we can head in either direction. Since you seem to know what you're doing, why don't you lead the way?"

In the right room:

"I expect there's another riddle in here, along with a puzzle. "Continue along the path, don't tread where you've been.." Interesting... Well, I'm pretty sure about two things. One, the riddle is most likely referring to these flat square stones. And two, I'm not going anywhere near them."

If approached again:

"At times like this, history truly comes alive for me."

Do you have any insights to share about this puzzle? "Have you tried to walk on the plates without stepping on the same one twice?"
"Most certainly. The translation was "Continue along the path, don't tread where you've been.""

"Very well, let's keep moving."

While completing the puzzle:

"Only five more to go! Now let's just hope something good happens when you hit the last one."
"And... Splendid! The gates have opened!"

After beating the draugr:

"Let's have a closer look at these runes. More of the dragon-tongue. The runes have faded a bit, but I believe I can translate the inscription. This writing refers to a guardian who inspired both men and dragons. I wonder if the guardian was himself a man or a dragon? It looks like a secret entrance opened up along the wall. You lead the way."

When arriving back in the main chamber:

"We might well be the first to set foot in here since this tomb was sealed."

When puting the Amethyst Claw, Right Half into its keyhole:

"Ah! So, that's where that goes! Now, let's see if we can find the other half of that claw."

In the left room:

"Hm... three pillars. Other than that plaque, there doesn't seem to be anything else worthy of note. Let's see what the inscription says. "All men must die, often by their own means." Sounds rather grim, if you ask me. The inscription must be a reference to these pillars. Three pillars surrounding a central one. Perhaps they are connected somehow? They also have glowing stones of some kind at the top. They look vaguely similar to drawings I've seen of objects called Impact Stones. Well, see what you can figure out. I'm going to inspect these pillars further to see if I've missed something."

If approached again:

"This is most exciting, wouldn't you agree?"

Could you repeat that inscription? "Certainly. The translation was "All men must die, often by their own means.""
Do you have any insights to share about this puzzle? "Well, there's a warrior, an archer and a mage. Perhaps each statue is meant to represent a different method of combat."

"Back to the adventure!"

When solving the puzzle:

"Ah, that's the trick!"
"There you go! Now let's see what mysteries await us in the next room."

After beating the draugr:

"Look! Here's another wall with dragon language inscriptions on it! Let's find out what's written here. The writing describes a guardian who defeated someone named Miraak. In fact, if I'm reading this correctly, it says that Miraak was a traitor. Most interesting. There's probably an exit through one of these sarcophagi. Let's get moving."

When puting the Amethyst Claw, Left Half into its keyhole:

"Alright, let's see what we have next. Here's another riddle. "Stay your course. To idle is to die." Well, at least it's straightforward. There appears to be a switch of some kind here. I'll just stand over here while you flip that switch. I'm sure everything will be fine."

After flipping the switch:

"By the nine! I've never seen anything like this. They appear to be platforms made entirely of magical force. Absolutely remarkable! If you can keep up with the platforms, you should be able to get across the chasm."

While crossing the chasm:

"Keep moving, and don't look down! Well... other than to see where you're going, of course."
"Ah, splendid! I had no doubt you'd make it across. Let's see what awaits us ahead."

When arriving at the second chasm:

"That looks like quite a drop! Is there something moving down there?"

While crossing the second chasm:

"Is it just me, or are these platforms moving a little faster?"
"I'm glad these platforms appear once you finish them. I don't want to find out what's down in that water."
"These platforms are definitely moving more quickly. Can you keep up with them?"
"I'm guessing this one will be even faster. Just remember to stay focused, and most importantly, run!"

If fallen:

"I didn't think you were going to survive that fall, let alone those things that were down there."

At the Hall of Stories:

"Ah, the Hall of Stories. These are found in many ancient Nord tombs. There must be hundreds of years of history etched in these walls. Too bad they seem to be too damaged to read. Hmm... looks like it needs some sort of key. Maybe those half claws you found would fit in here if you put them together? It seems these rings can be moved. Perhaps there's enough undamaged text in these etchings to tell us the combination. Ah, yes, here's something. The first one has to do with a breeze, or maybe it's wind. The second one mentions the the night sky, and the moon. And the third has something to do with fire. It also seems to mention scales. That's all I can make out of this etching. I'll check the rest and see if there's anything else. You keep trying out the combinations."
"There you go. I didn't doubt you for a second. Let's see what's up ahead."
"Hm, I wonder if I should have brought more torches."

After defeating Vahlok:

"Aha! There's another if those dragon language inscriptions! I wonder what it says. Just let me study these runes for a moment... Hmm, there's another mention of the guardian. I can only assume that this is the guardian's tomb we are standing in now. It says that he was loyal, and his reward was an honorable death. Quite fascinating."

If approached again:

"How amazing! A real Dragon Priest! In all my years as a historian, I never though I'd see anything like that. I suppose that was Vahlok. He must have had this entire place built for him so that he could maintain his vigil, even beyond death."

He must have been someone important. "Indeed. I knew that the Dragon Priests were thought to have been powerful men of great will, but I had no idea. Well, I suppose I've seen everything I came for, and you kept up your end of the bargain. I promised payment and here it is. Now I think I'll spend some more time studying this word wall. What a book this will make!"

If approached again:

"You've quite a keen mind to go with those steel nerves."

Why all the traps and puzzles? "A good question. Partly to keep unwanted intruders away, I suppose. they might also have been meant as tests, to ensure that only the truly worthy can reach the main burial chamber. Who can say, really? The motives of the Dragon Priests are as inscrutable as those of the Dragons they worshipped."
What have you learned about this place? "This is clearly a tomb, if a rather elaborate one. I would guess it was built for a Dragon Priest who achieved great fame in his time. It seems he was held in high regard by both men and dragons, because he defeated a traitor named Miraak. Perhaps Miraak was also a Dragon Priest, probably a contemporary of this guardian. He must have turned against his own order. After his defeat, Miraak was banished to Solstheim and the guardian was made his jailer."
Do you think this place has any connection with the Skaal? "I've been thinking about that, and I believe it does. I believe it was the ancient ancestors of the Skaal who built this tomb for their master, the Dragon Priest they called the guardian. In all likelihood, these people were ancient Nords who came with the Dragon Priests to live here on Solstheim. Separated from their people on the mainland, that developed a distinct culture that became the Skaal we know today. Of course this is all just theory and conjecture. It is likely we will never know the truth."

"Right then."


The Black BookEdit

Frea: "Father, you must not do this. That book is... wrong. Evil. Against everything that you have taught me my whole life."
Storn: "I must, Frea. It is the only way to free Solstheim forever from Miraak's shadow. There comes a time when everything must change. Nothing that lives remains the same forever. Do not fear for me, my daughter. This is the destiny that the All-Maker has laid out for me."
Frea: "I stand beside you, father, as always."
Storn: "I am ready for whatever the foul master of this book has in store for me."
Hermaeus Mora: "At last, the Skaal yield up their secrets to me."
Storn: "You... liar... gah! ... I won't... not... for you..."
Frea: "Father! No, stop!"
Frea: "Do something!"
Hermaeus Mora: "Dragonborn, you have delivered me the gift I requested. In return, I keep my promise, as befits a Prince of Oblivion: I give you the Word of Power that you need to challenge Miraak. You will be either a worthy opponent or his successor, as the tides of fate decree."
Frea: "Father! What have you done! Go. My father sacrificed himself so that you could destroy Miraak and lift his master's shadow from the land. Go, then. Kill Miraak. Do not fail."
Fanari Strong-Voice: "Goodbye, old friend. We will miss you, but do not worry. Frea will guide us well, thanks to you."
Deor Woodcutter: "Frea... I'm sorry."
Baldor Iron-Shaper: "I... uh... you'll be missed, old man."
Oslaf: "You always protected us. I hope you find peace in the next life. Goodbye, old one."
Aeta: "It can't be... please, All-Maker, send him back to us..."
Wulf Wild-Blood: "Return to the All-Maker, old one. The Skaal will never forget your sacrifice."
Finna: "May the All-Maker guide your soul to the next life."
Edla: "We won't forget what you did for us, Storn Crag-Strider. Walk with the All-Maker."
Morwen: "I don't really understand what you did, but I trust you did it for the good of the village. So... thank you."
Yrsa: "Oh... so terrible. When will these dark times be over?"
Tharstan: "By the gods... I've never seen anything like it... I, uh... I don't think this will go in my book."
Nikulas: "Frea... what happened? What was that thing? I thought the village was safe now."


  • Tharstan will stay behind, purportedly to study the Word Wall, where he will mention "There's enough here for entire volumes!"
  • According to game data, Tharstan is Fanari Strong-Voice's husband.


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