Apr 05, 2020 12:52 AM
Lianda finds Dawnbreaker
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"Yeah.  The little pebble that wanted to be a gemstone, it's apparently something of Meridia's that lets her talk to people who touch it, and Lianda had a conversation with her.  And now, you know, there's a Daedric prince after one of our museum pieces, so that's where my day's at."

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"...Why am I not surprised Lianda both drew a Daedric Prince's attention and decided a conversation was a good idea." She rubs her face. "One of hers how?"

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"She called it her beacon? Mentioned something about it enabling her to bring new light into the dark, and showed me a picture of a shrine."

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"We should have something about that in our stacks somewhere."

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" - We're not actually taking this thing back to her?"

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"It's important to consider our options, to know as much as we can before we act. And Meridia isn't one of the Daedric Princes widely considered evil - though she can be... Resolute. We can't put the stone on display. And there's that repatriation project I've begun... Returning an artifact to a Prince is a rather strange example, but it is in line with museum policy on legitimately claimed artifacts."

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"I think we can probably make an exception for literal demons.  I'm with you on not putting it on display but my first choice was going to be locking it in a safe in the basement, or maybe burying it on an island off the northern coast - "

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"We can't guarantee that won't anger her. And also an expedition to her shrine could uncover some quite interesting things..."

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"Sure, ancient magic artifacts, very exciting, lots of potential, but me personally, I draw the line at the direct attention of elder Daedra.  I vote we run the other way from this whole thing."

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"You don't need to be involved, but at least one of us already has her direct attention. Which is a factor that should be taken into consideration."

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"All right, well, on your own head."

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"I'll try and find some more resources on what's happened with her shrine, and what's known about her and her artifacts..."

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"I can help with artifacts, I know some background information - not so much local history."

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"Happy to hit the books, but if you decide to have another talk with Meridia I'm not gonna be in the room."

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"Fair enough." To the reference manuals?

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To the reference manuals.

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Lianda's not familiar with their particular system, but she knows the leader tomes on the Daedric Princes even if she doesn't have their contents memorized, and with Malielle's help she's able to narrow down on references to Meridia fairly quickly.

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Malielle, meanwhile, is focusing on historical accounts of the shrine - mostly traveler's journals.

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There are no unambiguously good Daedric princes; by and large, there are more and less frightening ones.  Meridia is one of the less frightening.  She has, historically, been associated with summer, high noon, droughts, the desert, the forge, exposing and punishing the guilty, certain types of restoration magic - and in almost every appearance, the destruction of the undead.  The clear through line in all of her aspects and interpretations is unforgiving light and fire - she has a mission, or perhaps she is a mission, and she seeks out mortals who will carry it out unflinchingly.

She's had plenty of shrines, over the years, but there's evidence of a fairly special one in Solitude - accounts going back decades, centuries, of adventurers trying to explore the shrine and being fought back by Meridia's worshipers.  Of labyrinths lit by threads of white light, thin as spidersilk and bright as the sun; of nameless warriors wielding flaming golden swords.

More recent histories talk instead of wraiths and specters and draugr, of necromancers and vampires and vile experimentation.  What happened during the switch is unclear.

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"She'd consider that defilement, I bet."

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"She's terrifying. She's relentless. She doesn't compromise. But she's not whimsical. She's not chaotic. She has her priorities, which can be assumed. I think our least dangerous option is not drawing her ire, at this point."

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"Okay.  Okay.  But that's how it always starts."

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"I'm fairly confident I can keep my head."

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"Best of luck."  He doesn't sound sarcastic about it, either.

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