“I think that will be enough background Dragonborn”
I told the scribe I preferred to be called Evard.
“That would hardly be proper.”
I really hate the whole proper thing, who determines these things?
“Could you describe your escape from Helgen?”
It seemed like a long time ago in that so many things had happened since then but in truth it was not as long as it felt. I suppose it all started in Helgen.
I woke up with a killer headache and a sudden realization that I had been stripped of all my possessions. I also knew the feel of prison rags on my body and my hands were tightly bound with leather strips I was in a carriage pulled by a find brown horse and the driver was an Imperial soldier. Inside the Cart with me were Ralof of Riverwood, Lokir of Rorikstead and Ulfric Stormcloak. I found out these names as I went along but for the purposes of history I will give their names now. Ulfric was bound and gagged to keep him from using the voice. The discussion turned on who should be there and Lokir was of the opinion I shared which was neither of us should be there. The issue though was the Stormcloak rebels.
I was now very concerned that I might be executed along with the rebels and all I had done was walk into the ambush at the same time as the rebels. When I looked up a town was coming into view – Helgen. As we passed the main gate Ralof pointed out that there were Thalmor present. I slide down in my seat and looked off to the side so they couldn’t get a straight shot at my face. We rolled through the town and we ended in the square by one of the main towers. The headsman and an Imperial Captain were waiting for us.
We exited the cart, and then they began to have a roll call. Ulfric and Ralof went to their places but Lokir ran for it and was shot down by archers. Their problem with me was, I wasn’t on their list. Hadvar asked the Captain what to do and her reply made me speechless – she said I should still be executed. It was bad enough that I was unlawfully captured, but now I would be executed at the word of a Captain without trial! It just shows the injustice of the Empire at times.
“Dragonborn, are you sure you want stuff like that placed in your memoirs?”
I informed him that I did and that from now on if he asked me such a question again, I might be tempted to use my Unrelenting Force shout on him and walk out. I will not be censored. If the Emperor has a problem with my opinions about him or his precious Empire, he can come down and speak to me himself. I told the scribe that if he wanted my true opinion, I would say that the Empire’s survival is due to Titus Mead II’s brilliant plan at the Battle of the Red Ring, dumb luck, the favor of Divines and the fact I sided with him during the Stormcloak rebellion in Skyrim bringing dragons to his aid. Otherwise we might all be bowing down to the Thalmor. The Empire was like any other nation with its good and ,bad points. The scribe shook his head and continued writing.
We walked to the block and General Tullius was chiding Ulfric for starting the Civil War and murdering the High King. As soon as he was done we heard for the first time the echo of a dragon roar only at the time we didn’t know what it was. The Captain was ordered to give us our last rites and the priestess started but when the words ‘Eight Divines’ were uttered, I was about to whisper ‘and Talos’ that one of the Stormcloak basically stormed forward volunteering for death. He chided the Imperials saying he knew his ancestors were smiling at him could the Imperials say the same. He was a brave and foolish man. Had we let the last rites continue, Alduin would have attack long before any of us had went to the block. As it was he was executed and I was next.
I didn’t say much. I mean what could I say . I had just seen a man go bravely to the block. We heard the dragon roar again only closer but the Captain pressed the issue and ordered me forward. I found myself kneeling with my head on the block the fresh blood of the man who had just died touching my ear. That’s when Alduin flew into view, landed on the tower behind the executioner and cause hooded man to stumble. Then Alduin shouted which called a storm of fiery rocks and then he shouted again knocking me off the block. I heard Ralof’s voice and stumbled to me feet and followed him to another nearby tower. Alduin’s storm and roar echoed in my ears.
In the tower was Ulfric, Ralof and three other Stormcloaks two of which were injured. There was disbelief in everyone’s eyes, probably mine as well. A Dragon, the stuff of legends but no one had seen one in hundreds of years. Ulfric pressed us to action and the only route we had was to go up further in the tower. I asked if I could get my bonds cut but was ignored and we headed up the stairs. We got to the second floor landing when a part of the tower right in front of us smashed in and Alduin’s head stuck and fired a fiery blast that filled the tower. Shortly afterwards he was gone and Ralof was telling me to jump into the inn which was missing part of the roof.
I jumped, despite my fear of heights and ran through the broken and burning second floor of what had been the inn. I dropped down through a hole in the floor to the ground floor. As I exited I watched Alduin drop down and kill and man who was lying wounded on the street. Hadvar and another man grabbed a boy and pulled him away. He saw me and marveled I was still alive. He then told me if I wanted to stay that way, I should stay close. So I followed him.
We found ourselves running through a narrow gap between building when Alduin nearly landed on top of us. I watch him burn a soldier to a crisp and then he hurled himself skyward. Hadvar and I ran forward again and found General Tullius rallying a defense of mages and archers by the gate. He told Hadvar and I to make our way to the keep. We did so.
We made the short run from where we were to the keep. We ran into Ralof along the way. An argument ensued between Ralof and Hadvar which I considered foolish. By the gods we were being attacked by a dragon and they were still discussing politics. In the end, the two headed two separate directions and both were calling to me to follow them.
I made my choice that day I suppose. As much as I admired the Stormcloaks for their grit and determination as well as their faith, I couldn’t do it. I followed Hadvar. All I could see was a divided Empire swallowed up by the Aldmeri Dominion piece by piece and that is something I could not accept. Of course what I was thinking at the time had little to do with politics. I figured if I made it out of Helgen alive, I would want the someone in the Empire to owe me enough to get a pardon or whatever to clear my name. These thoughts were racing through my head as I finally found cover inside Helgen Keep.