Elder Scrolls
Elder Scrolls

"Over the last few days we've had some disturbing information come to light regarding the events at Wolfskull Cave and the summoning and binding ritual you interrupted there. Given your involvement with that event I'm asking you to return to Solitude to help us once more."
Falk Firebeard[src]

The Wolf Queen Awakened is a quest available in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim in which the Dragonborn must face the unbound Potema Septim gathering power underneath Solitude. It is given to the Dragonborn after they complete the quest "The Man Who Cried Wolf," provided that they have reached level 10.


Potema has been summoned from beyond the grave and is gathering power. Styrr has given me the key to Potema's Catacombs. I must enter the catacombs and prevent Potema from fully resurrecting by acquiring her bones.


  1. Speak to Styrr
  2. Defeat Potema
  3. Retrieve Potema's remains
  4. Give Potema's remains to Styrr
  5. Return to Falk Firebeard


Once a level is gained after completing "The Man Who Cried Wolf," a courier will approach with a letter from Falk Firebeard, asking the Dragonborn to return to him. Upon reaching Falk, he will inform the Dragonborn that, despite popular belief, Potema Septim (The Wolf Queen) was not destroyed when the ritual was stopped, and remains a significant threat. He says to talk to Styrr, who is in the Hall of the Dead. Styrr will explain that since the Dragonborn stopped the ritual, they have a connection to Potema. The Dragonborn must investigate the catacombs beneath the chapel that lead to her. Styrr requests the remains of Potema so he can bless them. He provides the character with a Turn Undead spell which causes these enemies to flee from the Dragonborn for a brief amount of time.

Styrr in the Hall of the Dead.

Enter the Temple of the Divines. The Temple is located on the upper courtyard of Solitude, opposite the entrance to Castle Dour's barracks. Once inside, the quest marker can be misleading, as it sends the Dragonborn to the wall on the right of the entrance. The entrance to the catacombs is in the basement, so one will need to go forward almost to the shrines and turn left twice. A path will lead down to a locked gate. With the key obtained previously the Dragonborn can now open the gate. Once through the locked door, a path to the left leads to Potema's Catacombs.

Potema's Catacombs[]

The wolf etching and a blocked entrance.

Head down the first set of stairs. Around the corner there is a statue of a wolf and a blocked door. The doorway has several thick bars blocking it. Potema will speak to the Dragonborn and then open the gate. In the following room there is a draugr. Around the corner to the right the Dragonborn will come to a room with a bar and a hallway directly across from it covered in spider webs. Pass through the webs and turn left. Another quick left leads to a staircase. The upper pathway is blocked with rubble. The lower path leads down to a small room. There will be two chests and several barrels to loot.

A Vampire Nightstalker ready to attack.

Passing through the small room leads to a very large room with a staircase leading down to a lower level. The upper balcony has one draugr directly to the right upon entering the room. The lower level will have several enemies, one of which is a Vampire Nightstalker. Beware as if the Dragonborn is not already a vampire or a werewolf, the vampires' Drain Life spell can inflict Sanguinare Vampiris on them. Head down the stairs to the lower level. There is a skill book on the table and a path leading downward. The path leads to another doorway. Upon opening it, one will find themselves in a short hallway leading to a large room with a draugr patrolling it.

A dead draugr in front of a fire trap.

Another draugr is hung upon the wall, but it will remain passive. The area directly in front of it is part of a fire trap. The draugr will have a weapon and a helm that can be taken. Around the corner there is a switch. The switch opens the gate, leading to a stairway down, but across the way is another dead draugr on the wall. This one will attack when the Dragonborn gets close. Once down the stairs another draugr to the right will eventually rise from his coffin, but can be shot quickly in Sneak mode.

A vampire encountered down the stairs.

Dead draugr in cages near a trapped chest.

This hallway has an upper and lower level. Besides the draugr in his coffin, another patrols the hallway. Once killed, go up the stairs to the higher level. The doorway leads to an underground cavern with a set of stairs leading down. Down the first hallway is a leveled vampire. Turn left at the end of the hallway and down the corridor one will find another split level area, with water in the lower area and two draugr. There is also an urn in the water with a few gold coins in it. The doorway leading out of here is booby-trapped with the typical wall spike trap activated by a foot switch. The next room has more barrels to loot and takes the Dragonborn to a larger open cavern with more water, and two draugr standing against the right wall. There are several hanging cages, one of which has a dead draugr. There is a grindstone and a booby-trapped chest on the left. Standing to either side of the chest when looted will allow one to avoid the poison darts that shoot from the walls. Keep going down the path, and it will lead to a switch. This is a preview of some later doorway puzzles. It should be noted that whether it was intentional or not, these revolving type doors generally shut after a period of time. In any case, the doorway revolves one way or another depending on the direction of the switch. Once through the doorway, one will encounter another room decorated with carvings of Potema and an alchemy table. The doorway leads to Potema's Refuge.

Potema's Refuge[]

Switches to the revolving doors.

A soul gem fire trap.

The vampire holds the key.

Potema's Refuge is a large underground network of caverns like most other draugr dungeons. The path leads down to where the Dragonborn will encounter another leveled draugr. The path to the left is a dead end. Taking the path on the right leads to a room with three switches that open the three revolving doors. Before going through the revolving doors, open the gate on the right. Another blooded vampire resides within. A switch behind the coffin reveals a hidden door. This leads down a passageway to a chest with a window to the next room one will be entering. Head back to the room with the three switches. Activating the first lever in line will stop and start the first revolving door, etc. Stop all three doors when the entrance is open and head through to the next room. The Dragonborn can see the window here with the chest that they just looted. At the end of the hall are two soul gems on pedestals. They are the source of a fire trap, and the Dragonborn will be blasted by intermittent bursts of flame which can be stopped by taking the soul gems off the pedestals. The room to the left is an empty chamber leading to a doorway with a staircase. The staircase leads to a throne room where a Vampire Fledgling is accompanied by a Draugr Deathlord, or something of a lower level if the Dragonborn is not of a sufficient level yet to face that kind of enemy. The vampire should have a key to Potema's Sanctum on his body, but there is also a copy of the key on one of the two thrones. The grate in the center of the room shows the Dragonborn a dead draugr, but there is no way to get to it at the time. Through the double doors with the new key and taking the hallway to another set of doors will lead to Potema's Sanctum.

Potema's Sanctum[]

Upon first entering there is a short hallway leading to a burial chamber. Several burial urns can be found here, along with a dead draugr on an altar. The draugr is not a concern immediately. However, in the next room another Vampire Mistwalker will be found and they may raise the draugr on the altar to life using their Conjuration spells to reanimate dead bodies, which if the spellcaster is slain, the resurrected corpse disintegrates into a pile of ashes. Two more draugr will follow the vampire into the fray. Once these creatures are defeated, a skeleton can be found wandering the next hallway past the two thrones.

Potema raises the dead.

The next room on the left is filled with many dead draugr and vampires. They may have valuable loot on them, such as gold and soul gems. Potema's voice will speak again at this point. She will then proceed to resurrect a number of draugr and the single vampire in the room. Before they are raised (before Potema speaks), one can take the enemies' weapons away from them, making them easy to kill. The higher the Dragonborn's level, the stronger the draugr, and the more she resurrects. A cloak spell would be helpful here, as is an immediate fast retreat to the passageway in order for foes to be killed individually or in smaller groups. There is nothing in the next chamber; however, upon entering the following room, there will be more enemies. It would be recommended to save at this point.

Potema magic in the main burial crypt.

Facing Potema.

Potema congratulates the Dragonborn on doing so well, but then asks if they are capable of making it past her "inner council." The now familiar purple energy whirlwind from the previous quest will also begin to resurrect draugr. This is a difficult stage, as the energy in the room creates difficulty seeing while draugr attack from all over. The purple energy drains significant health and magicka on each hit, so it would be recommended to enter the room to get Potema's attention, then stay in the previous room to avoid the shock elemental Destruction magic Potema discharges around the room. For melee-oriented players, they can wait for the draugr to come to them through the door; archers and mages can stand just beyond the door and attack. Since the draugr will have to funnel through the door, this also makes them lined-up targets for Dragon Shouts such as Fire Breath or Unrelenting Force, as well as spells such as Fireball and Chain Lightning. The Flaming Familiar spell will also be useful, as sneaking and continuing to conjure the Familiar in the center of the room (after it explodes) attracts the draugr to it instead of the Dragonborn. One may be able to defeat all of the enemies that Potema summons with this spell alone. After each wave, Potema will resurrect killed draugr to attack the Dragonborn again. Eventually, the last one will be killed for the last time, and the Dragonborn will receive the objective to get Potema's remains. However, the Dragonborn will now have to defeat Potema's ghost. She can summon Atronachs, and uses the spell Lightning Bolt. She also has the Unrelenting Force Shout and will most likely have a leveled enchanted weapon. Once defeated, the Dragonborn is instructed to seize Potema's skull. There is also a chest near the back door containing loot.

There may be another draugr up the stairs depending on the Dragonborn's level beyond this point. One will pass a room with two thrones. Each throne will be occupied, probably by a Draugr Deathlord and another type (which is level-dependent). Once the Dragonborn exits here they will find themselves on a ledge on the side of the mountain north of Solitude. Another chest rests on the ledge, along with one or two potions and a leveled weapon.

Return Potema's remains to Styrr so he can sanctify them and then head to Falk Firebeard in the Blue Palace for the reward.


The Wolf Queen Awakened – MS06
ID Journal Entry
50 Potema has been summoned from beyond the grave and is gathering power. Falk has sent me to Styrr to get the key to Potema's Catacombs.
  • Objective 50: Speak to Styrr
100 Potema has been summoned from beyond the grave and is gathering power. Styrr has given me the key to Potema's Catacombs. I must enter the catacombs and prevent Potema from fully resurrecting by acquiring her bones.
  • Objective 100: Defeat Potema
  • Objective 125: Retrieve Potema's remains
150 Potema has been summoned from beyond the grave. I've defeated her in the Catacombs and retrieved her bones. I must return them to Styrr for blessing and tell Falk Potema has been defeated.
  • Objective 150: Return to Falk Firebeard
  • Objective 155: Give Potema's remains to Styrr
250 I have defeated Potema and been rewarded by Falk Firebeard.
  • Quest complete


  • Sometimes couriers are unintentionally blocked by certain quests; usually, finishing quests allows them to appear (there may be other solutions to this as well).
  • If for some reason the courier never seems to appear even after leveling up, use these steps to trigger to quest:
    • Go to the Blue Palace and check Falk's inventory.
    • Make sure he has Potema's Catacomb Key in his inventory. Read the letter and talk to him. Reading the letter without the key will not start the quest.
    • An option showing "You sent me a message about Wolf Skull Cave?" should appear. Select it to begin the quest.
    • This dialogue says "Wolf skull" cave, even though the name is "Wolfskull cave."
  • In the final fight with Potema, the easiest way to kill her is to stand back near the entrance while using sneak with Archery/Mage. This quest can prove to be challenging at lower levels. The Slow Time shout can be helpful while using this method.
  • This quest may only be activated if the Dragonborn has leveled up after completing "The Man Who Cried Wolf," as the courier will never contact them if they do not. If the Dragonborn is the highest possible level in-game when they completed "The Man who Cried Wolf," then this quest is impossible to start. Patch 1.9 allows making a skill legendary, resetting it to level 15, which effectively removes the overall level cap. Thus, it is possible to start this quest after getting to level 81.
  • Attempting to pickpocket Falk Firebeard after "The Man Who Cried Wolf" reveals the letter to the Dragonborn already in his inventory.
  • In the final battle, fighting Potema can be avoided by luring the draugr into the hallway before the room and killing them before the Dragonborn enters the room.
  • Although Potema speaks quite fluently when in her floating spirit form, she somehow loses this as a ghost, and speaks in normal draugr form.
  • Potema's ghost that the Dragonborn fights is essentially a ghostly re-skinned Draugr Scourge, as she has the same walking sound, vocals, spells, and Dragon Shouts as a Scourge, barring that Potema can also summon a Storm Atronach, which Draugr Scourges cannot do. She can also be snuck up on and is susceptible to sneak attack damage.
  • Despite being mentioned quite often in The Wolf Queen as Potema's right-hand man, Lord Vhokken does not appear as one of her undead inner council.


This section contains bugs related to The Wolf Queen Awakened. Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:

  1. Please reload an old save to confirm if the bug is still happening.
  2. If the bug is still occurring, please post the bug report with the appropriate system template  360  /  XB1  ,  PS3  /  PS4  ,  PC  /  MAC  ,  NX  /  PS5  ,  XS  , depending on which platform(s) the bug has been encountered on.
  3. Be descriptive when listing the bug and fixes, but avoid having conversations in the description and/or using first-person anecdotes: such discussions belong on the appropriate forum board.
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  • Exiting the dialogue when returning Potema's remains will glitch the quest into not being complete, even if the remains are returned.
  • Because the courier only appears after one levels up, getting the quest to activate may not happen if the Dragonborn has leveled up to a certain point (for instance, when one reaches level 252, at which point every perk in every skill tree will be obtained).
  •  PS3   One way around problems entering the catacombs under the temple is to use the wooden plate glitch (holding a plate and running into it at a wall) to glitch through a wall near the locked door and then jumping or glitching into the pathway to the catacombs.
  •  360   One may not be able to pick up Potema's skull. To fix this, save and reload the game.
  • Sometimes in the room before taking the remains Potema will not be there, though the draugr will still be hostile and one will still hear her. This therefore means that the door at the end of the room will not open at the end of the battle.
  •  XB1   Using the Wabbajack on the vampires immediately freezes the game. At this point one must completely exit and restart the game.
  • Sometimes, when getting Potema's remains, Potema's ghost herself will not even show up, meaning one can simply grab the remains and leave. This can be accomplished by sneaking up to the remains, or using Unrelenting Force to scatter them.
  •  PC   Falling through the floor when entering the area.
    • Now known: This is a conflict with the custom made quest available through the add-on/mod Quest: No Mercy, on Steam Workshop and Skyrim Nexus. Simply un-check the mod from your data files in the Skyrim Launcher or the Nexus Mod Manager to do Potema's quest, and re-check it again later.
  • After completing the quest, one can still hear the revolving doors while inside some places.
  •  PC   360   PS3   Sometimes the revolving doors will reactivate after the encounter with Potema. The three-door set is easy to overcome, but the one door is impossible to pass. No known fix.
    • Restarting the PS3 may fix this bug.
  • After clearing the cave, the game may crash.
  • Fix: Queen uses Yarl03 clothing; any mods that alter the mesh of this clothing will crash the game when she tries to spawn. However, a crash may occur even without mods installed. If one has Nexus Mod Manager Installed, try using it to switch off the Mod that affects Yarl03 Armor/Clothing. Then, simply continue playing from where the last save was before the crash. Switch the Armour/Clothing Mod back on once the quest has been completed.
  • Fix: Grab Potema's remains before the end of the fight. The Dragonborn can enter the throne chamber by toggling object collision using console command tcl. Take the skull and complete the quest before defeating Potema. Turn collision back on using the same console command and finish the fight. After defeating Potema there will be no CTD.
  •  360   PS3   The door behind Potema's throne that leads to a second door outside will not be passable because the door bar will not open.
    • Fix: Exit the last door one came through, then re-enter it. The bar door will now be liftable.
  • After Completion of Stormcloak questline: Sometimes if the Dragonborn had a bounty in Whiterun before the Stormcloaks took over, Commander Caius may attack the Dragonborn while speaking with Falk Firebeard about the completion of the quest, rendering the quest impossible to finish, as the dialogue option to finish the quest will no longer be available. This also renders it impossible to obtain the Shield of Solitude.
  • Potema may make a companion drop to the ground with just one melee hit. Even after Potema is beaten, one's companion may still do this. It is best to dismiss the companion, then have them return after defeating Potema.
  • Potema's electric beam may continue to animate even after she is defeated, seems to happen upon re-entering Potema's Sanctum from the cliff-side exit. If walked into, the beam will still cause damage to the Dragonborn.
  • After Potema sends her minions after the Dragonborn, exiting and re-entering the sanctum will cause her to disappear from the ceiling. After all her draugr are defeated the door will open; however, she will not be there. After the skull is taken, some of the draugr will reanimate themselves and start attacking again.
  • While in the Temple of the Divines, one of the monks may kill everyone around them, excluding the Dragonborn. They may chase one of the other monks downstairs. The victim will unlock the gate to Potema's Catacombs, which normally requires a key and cannot not be picked. If one proceeds through the dungeon, kills Potema's ghost, then takes her skull, all before the quest is received, the quest will not be completable. The quest marker will always be stuck on "Kill Potema," even though she is already dead. One will be unable to drop and again pick up Potema's remains, as the game still recognizes it as a quest item.
  •  360   Potema's remains may not show up.
    •  360 (Fix)   Check the map for the location of the skull. It can sometimes gets knocked into an inaccessible area between a wall and a coffin. When this happens, blasting that area with a number of powerful explosions (fireball, vampire's bane, sunburst from a sunhallowed arrow, etc) can jar it loose enough to be selected and acquired.
  •  PC   The quest will not initiate after "The Man Who Cried Wolf" when maximum level is reached before completion.
    • Fix: One can reset their level using console command player.setlevel <amount> where amount is between 1–80. Next, level up a skill that has not reached level 100 until the Dragonborn levels up again. Afterwards, wait or sleep. The courier should then appear within twenty four hours. (Note: An easier way to do this is to use the command player.setav <skill><amount> to lower the level of a high-level skill, then practice that skill until one levels up, as the skill level will quickly increase back to whatever it was.)
  •  PC   360   If the Dragonborn talks to Falk Firebeard before talking to Styrr, the objective will not count as finished. The dialogue will go away, making the quest impossible to finish.
  •  360   Even after receiving the letter from the courier, the dialogue option to start this mission may not appear when trying to speak to Falk Firebeard.
    • Fix: To fix this, simply pickpocket the duplicate note he is carrying along with Potema's Catacombs Key then speak to him again. The dialogue option should now be available.
    • Fix: Reading the letter again may fix this.
  • When returning to the Blue Palace after clearing Wolfskull Cave, Beirand might disappear from the game, and his family acts like he has died.