LOREDAS, 5th of HEARTFIRE
Since there was no cooking pot available at the Bee and Barb, the smith Balimund let me use his to cook a breakfast of grilled chicken this morning. For the next couple of hours, I searched high and low throughout Riften for Hofgrir but could not locate him. I was finally able to find him inside the Riften Stables. He had not noticed me enter so I took advantage of the situation and snatched the Mark of Dibella from his pocket. It was almost noon so I returned to the Honorhall Orphanage. I walked to the back where Grelod’s room was and shut the door. She turned to face me. She seemed to know why I was there and she stared down her fate with the same frigid demeanor. “You think I’m scared of you?” she sneered.
“No, but no one will ever be scared of you again.” I said as I thrust the dagger into her. Her eyes went wide as she collapsed to the floor. At the sound, the children burst into the room. When they discovered that Grelod was dead, they were overjoyed. The other caretaker Constance was frightened out of her wits and hid in a corner pleading with me not to hurt her. I told her to take care of the children or I would be back for her. I left and went to Haelga’s Bunkhouse.
Haelga kept her Statue of Lady Dibella at a shrine around the corner from the front desk. When she wasn’t looking, I grabbed the statue and stowed it away in my knapsack. I approached Haelga and asked if I could buy a room for the night. She refused and said that the rooms were reserved for hard-working merchants only. Then I discreetly laid out all three Marks of Dibella on her desk and asked if she would accept these as payment. Her face went white. She begged me not to tell anyone and gave me a magical Scroll of Hysteria to buy my silence. Apparently, she would be driven out of town if anyone found out she practiced the Dibellan arts.
“Then you won’t care if I drop this then?” I asked, dangling the Statue of Dibella in front of her. Brynjolf was right. She gave up the money she owed without much resistance. Her niece, Svana was pleased to see Haelga squirm and she rewarded me with her father’s old steel helm. She told me it was supposed to endow the wearer with reinforced magic. Now that I had collected all three payments, I ate a late lunch of salmon steak and reported back to Byrnjolf.
Brynjolf was extremely pleased with the job I had done. He compensated for my troubles with a Drought of Light Feet and a Drought Health. Brynjolf confessed that the Guild had run into a rough patch, but he assured me that everything was going to be alright. He then had me follow him into the back room of the Ragged Flagon. He opened a secret cabinet which led to an underground cistern. He introduced me to the Guild Master, Mercer Frey. Mercer was a blunt man of few words. He told me that I was to do what I was told and that there was no tolerance for rule-breaking. After I acknowledged his rules, Frey then decided it was time to put my skills to the test. He wanted me to investigate Goldenglow Estate, a bee farm which was critically important to one of their clients. However, recently the owner, a Bosmer named Aringoth had decided to take matters into his own hand and shut the Guild out. They had previously sent Vex to investigate and she had reported back that Aringoth had hired numerous mercenaries and fortified the entire island. With that out of the way, Mercer and Brynjolf then officially welcomed me into the ranks of the Thieves Guild. Brynjolf suggested that I talk to Delvin Mallory and Vex. They knew their way around and they might have extra jobs for me. Also he suggested I talk to Tonilia who would set me up with my new armor.
I pressed Brynjolf for more details on the Goldenglow Estate job. He told me he wanted to teach Aringoth a lesson by burning down three of the farm’s hives and clearing the safe in the main house. Brynjoff did not want the whole place burnt to the ground, explaining that the client would be furious if that were to occur. I deduced that Maven Briar-Black was the client. If the hives were all burned, then she would have to import the honey and that would cut into her profits. Essentially, Maven allowed the Thieves Guild to extort Aringoth and bring in a huge payout. Pretty good arrangement. Brynjolf told me that Maven preferred if Aringoth were left alive, but I was given license to kill if he gets out of line.
I spent the rest of the evening meeting members of the guild who were extremely welcoming. I met a Cynric Endell, an infamous lock picker and jailbreaker. His last jailbreak failed and he was imprisoned in High Rock for three years. Thus, he had joined the Thieves Guild for protection. He also shared that he had done jobs for the Dark Brotherhood. Perhaps later on, I will be able to get more information from him about the Brotherhood. I also met Vipir The Fleet, who earned his name when during a job, he forgot about the horses and he ran all the way from Windhelm to Riften. There was Rune, an orphaned boy adopted by a fisherman. He got his name because the only possession they had found on him was a tiny smooth stone with strange markings. Rune told me he has never been able to find out what the stone means, but I told him I’d keep an eye out. Then there was a fellow Bosmer named Niruin of Valenwood who had simply joined for the excitement.
Back in the main room of the Ragged Flagon, I spoke with Vex. She was a beautiful pale Imperial with sharp features and a permanent scowl. She immediately made two conditions clear. First, she was the best infiltrator the guild had. The second being, that I followed her lead at all times. When I asked her about the Guild’s run of bad luck, she admitted that she wasn’t sure why (Delvin thought it was a curse) but seemed confident that we would make a comeback. I told her that I had been assigned the Goldenglow job. She told me on her last visit Aringoth had tripled the guards, but I should be able to get past them through an unguarded old sewer tunnel on the northwest side of the island. Finally, for some gold Vex showed me some new lock picking tricks. I traded in my existing armor to Tonilia for the Thieves Guild armor and bought an Orcish Bow of Flames which according to Tonilia caused an incredible amount of fire damage with each shot.
I went down to my bed in the cistern and went to sleep.