If you have any questions or comments, please email me at celestina.skymark@gmail.com

Saturday, December 31, 2011

IX - An Unusual Army

Julan was waiting up anxiously for her in the Winged Guar, and though he looked relieved as she entered, he seemed to sense that she didn’t want to talk. He left Fen alone, and she went straight to bed, willing her mind to forget the hopelessness of her situation.

Sunday, December 25, 2011


Today Fen and Julan will be celebrating the New Life Festival with the rest of Tamriel. Julan will probably get drunk.

Have a safe and happy holiday!

Celestina :)

Saturday, December 17, 2011

VIII - The Common Tongue

Delitian was far from pleased by Fen’s report.
“They’ve all escaped? All three?” he said incredulously when Fen told him. She nodded, her throat tight. “I don’t believe this,” the captain muttered, rubbing his eyes. “There must be a leak here at the palace. Did you give anyone else this information?”

Saturday, December 3, 2011

VII - A Delicate Matter

Llethan Manor looked no different as it had the last time Fen had visited. It stood tall and lonely in the upperclass district of Godsreach, as if in defiance of the cheery, brightly-lit buildings that surrounded it. Its roseglass windows were dark and silent, and only a single lantern burned outside the door. The High Ordinators patrolling the cobbled streets shot them suspicious glances as they mounted the platform that led to the manor’s doorstep.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

VI - Evidence of Conspiracy

It had been over a year since Fen had last been in the Palace, but her memory served her well as she and Julan made their way through the finely tiled reception chambers.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Why I am excited about Skyrim

Originally posted on my Twitter, thought I'd share here as well. You guys have been an amazing support for OoM for the past year, and I really appreciate it. Have fun playing Skyrim tonight!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Schedule/Update Changes

Hi everyone - I just wanted to post a brief message letting you all know that I will now be posting chapters every other week as opposed to every week. Editing, proofing, and fact-checking each chapter is very time-consuming work, and real life has been throwing a lot at me lately.  The next chapter will be up on November 19th (everyone ((including me)) is going to be playing Skyrim next Saturday anyway...). I'm really very sorry to change the update schedule in the middle of Part Two, but I want the chapters to be as polished as possible when I post them, and changing the schedule will give me a lot more time to make sure that they are.

Thank you again for all of your support. If you frequent the forums, I've officially signed off to avoid Skyrim spoilers, so you won't be seeing me around there much for a while. You can still reach me by email or comment if need be.


Saturday, October 29, 2011

V - Disloyalty

It had been over a year since Fen had last been in the Palace, but her memory served her well as she and Julan made their way through the finely tiled reception chambers.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

IV - Temple Informant

“This is perfect, Princess,” Delitian said as she handed him the folded copy of The Common Tongue. “Just what we needed to sort out these rumours.”

Monday, October 17, 2011

Thank you!

Today is the one year anniversary of OoM, and I just wanted to post a quick message to thank all of you for reading. I love getting your comments and emails, and I love writing for you. Hopefully you'll stick around with Fen and me for another year :)


Saturday, October 8, 2011

III - Of Public Opinion

At some point, Fen and Julan made their way silently back through the sewers and up into the warm bustle of the Great Bazaar. Fen carried the crumpled writ in one hand and kept her eyes down as she led the way back to Godsreach. Julan said nothing when they returned to the inn and Fen went straight to her room, shutting the door firmly on lunchtime diners. She sat at the round table, reading the writ over and over again until she could repeat the words in her head. There was no denying – Helseth had hired the Dark Brotherhood – twice – to kill her. His daughter. Fen pushed sharply away from the table and started to walk circles around the room, her head pounding.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

II - The Dark Brotherhood

Fen’s feet touched solid ground. She kept her eyes closed, breathing in the sweet, familiar scent of Timsa-Come-By and feeling the sunlight warm her face. Slowly, she looked up, and found herself clasping Julan’s hand in one of several Reception Chambers of the Royal Palace of Mournhold. The chamber was empty and quiet, the late evening light filtering in gently from the rippled roseglass windows.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

I - The Assassin

Far away from the brightness and noise of Mournhold, the New Life Festival in Caldera was being celebrated in a similar fashion. Lights were strung across all the houses, people danced and laughed in the chill of the streets, and the doors of the local tavern were thrown open invitingly despite the cold. The cacophony of sound was dulled, however, inside the dimmed front room of a modest manor just inside the city, where a young Dunmer woman sat before the fire with her legs curled under her, a book open in her lap. Her eyes, however, were closed, the book unread, her head leaning against the wing of her armchair. The tea on the table beside her was undrunk, long grown cold, and the fire in the grate burned low. There was a general silence throughout the house, only permeated when a loud bang issued from outside, followed by several people cheering.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

PART TWO: Prologue

The streets of the Great Bazaar were alive with colour and noise. Ropes of bright flags were strung from lamp to lamp, trees were wrapped in vibrant paper, and lanterns with different coloured glass threw circles of red and gold and blue light onto the cobbles below. A thick string of people shifted slowly up and down the narrow paths between street shops, their excited voices rising high into the night air. They were all dressed in clothes that varied from dazzling splendour to thin rags – all manner of people moved throughout the festival, including a man in a dark cloak that pushed impatiently through the crowds.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Saturday, August 20, 2011

XXXVIII - The Final Meeting

The following weeks passed in an unintelligible blur. There were so many things to do – visit the Urshilaku camp to tell Nibani of her triumph, post a letter to Caius Cosades, travel to all the councilors and thank them for their support, replenish all the potions they had used, confirm to Orvas Dren that the operation of the Ghostfence was no longer necessary. And everywhere she went, people approaching her, some only staring reverently, some throwing themselves into her arms, sobbing their thanks.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

XXXVI - The Second Numidium

Dagoth Ur was waiting. He stood at the edge of a platform, a taunting smile beneath his glimmering mask, his face darkened from the light of the monstrous sight behind him. The platform dropped off steeply, revealing that the Heart Chamber was an enormous cavern, so high up that the ceiling was in shadow. In its center stood Akulakhan, a colossal construct built of corprus meat and ash, surrounded by ash servants. Its eyes were round and staring, letting off clouds of blood-colored steam. A machine god first built by the Dwemer, copied by Dagoth Ur for his own desires.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

XXXV - The Citadel of Dagoth Ur

Fen’s eyes adjusted slowly to the light. She was in a stone chamber, eerily reminiscent of Ilunibi with its draping vines and melted Sixth House candles. At the far end of the chamber, an familiar figure stood silently in the blood-coloured light of the candles.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

XXXIV - Assault on Red Mountain

The next morning, Fen moved in a dreamlike state. She and Julan woke easily, made sure all their things were in order, and silently left the sleeping Tower of Dusk. Without speaking, Fen pressed the switch on the pylon and the first gate rattled up. They had barely made it through the second gate when ash began to blow down the tunnel, the strongest winds they had faced yet. Clutching her scarf around her face, Fen narrowed her eyes against the ash and pressed onward, out of the tunnel and up the slope.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

XXXIII - Sunder

Just as they had yesterday, Fen and Julan rose early the next morning and started their third climb up Red Mountain. The wind blew as wildly as ever, and Fen had to keep both hands on her hood to keep it on her head. It took them nearly two hours to battle and climb their way to Citadel Endusal, a Dwemer stronghold built precariously into a steep slope. In the small entryway, they paused to shake the dust out of their clothes and take a swig of water from Fen’s skin.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

XXXII - Ghostgate

The air tasted sweet upon her tongue. The sun’s pleasant warmth enveloped her skin. Her hair hung loose, and it danced around her face on the breeze, long and dark. She opened her eyes and stared down at the vast lands spread out below her, stretching far in every direction beneath a deep blue sky scudded with clouds. The grassy cliff she stood upon stretched downward, leaving the base of the mountain impossible to see. She felt the cool breeze sigh out from the lip of the slumbering volcano, spreading a sense of calm throughout the land.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

XXXI - The Living God

Fen had not seen the Royal Palace of Mournhold until she was seven years old. She remembered the moment precisely, as if it had happened moments ago. Her aunt, or the woman she had thought to be her aunt, held her hand as they stepped into the tall-ceilinged, light-filled room hung with rose-colored banners emblazoned with the Royal crest. Barenziah and Helseth had been sitting on their twin thrones at the head of the room on their dais, leaning toward one another and speaking quietly. The air was sweet from the planters of Timsa-Come-By that lined it, and she remembered thinking that Barenziah’s deep green robe was the most beautiful thing she had ever seen.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

XXX - Hortator and Nerevarine

I apologise for the lack of an update last week. Real life got in the way. I will try to make sure it doesn't happen again.

The sun had not yet risen when Fen and Julan set out for Tel Branora. The boat ride was nearly six hours, and Fen spent the majority of the time on deck, watching the smooth gray rocks of Azura’s Coast drift sluggishly past. It was midmorning when they arrived at the docks of Tel Branora, a crooked Telvanni town that was situated in a gloomy, rock-covered valley by the water. The skies overhead were gray and heavy with waiting rain.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

XXIX - House Telvanni

Fen had, thankfully, experienced little interaction with the Telvanni during her time on Vvardenfell. The ancient and profane wizards made her nervous, for she knew that they had reputations of being less than stable. Now she only felt a fraction more confident as she and Julan teleported into the Mages’ Guild near Sadrith Mora and walked into the Telvanni town under a white sun in a stoneflower-blue sky.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

XXVIII - House Hlaalu

Despite being a member of it by birth, Fen knew little of the inner workings of House Hlaalu. She had learned over the past few months that they were considered to be the dregs of the Great Houses, called liars and thieves by anyone who was not a part of it themselves. It was with some trepidation, therefore, that Fen prepared herself to meet with the Councilors of the House, for she felt rather unsure of what to expect.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

XXVII - House Redoran (part 2)

They spent the rest of the morning visiting the rest of the manors under Skar. The councilors had all apparently gotten word of Fen from Athyn Sarethi already, and every one of them, to Fen’s immense relief, agreed to support her. She and Julan left Ald Skar just past noon to have lunch before going back to Venim Manor.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

XXVI - House Redoran (part 1)

Three hours passed and found Fen lying wide awake in her bed, staring listlessly at the ceiling. Every time she thought about convincing the Redoran councilors to support her, a nervous flutter went through her stomach. Despite the public not knowing about her, Fen’s grandmother had educated her well on the art of diplomacy, reasoning that she would need it someday regardless. Seems like now’s the time to use it, Fen thought to herself. She rolled over, trying to get comfortable, and saw the crack of light under the door widen. Then the door was open partway, and a hunched, emaciated figure was shuffling into the room, its heavy breathing raspy and loud.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

XXV - The Eribenimsun Camp

Though Fen was comforted by the fact that three Ashlander tribes put their wholehearted trust in her, apprehension still hung around her like a storm cloud. She knew they believed she could do it, and she knew Julan and Shani shared the same sentiment – but she was the one that wasn’t sure. Every time she glanced down and saw Moon-and-Star glimmering on her finger, she felt a shudder of unease in the pit of her stomach at the thought of what she would eventually have to do.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Happy birthday!

In Morrowind time, today is 14 Rain's Hand, which means that it is Fen's 25th birthday! Since I don't use screenshots in the narrative, I figured I'd put one here for the occasion:

Happy birthday Fen, you're awesome. The next chapter will be up on April 23rd :)


Sunday, April 10, 2011

XXIV - The Zainab Camp

Silence fell in the Urshilaku camp as Fen and Julan entered. The Ashlanders stared openly, stopping what they were doing to watch as Fen led the way to Nibani Maesa’s yurt and ducked inside. The wise woman was sitting serenely before the fire, shifting a clay plate that held several bleached nix hound bones around on her lap. Her head was bent intently over the plate, and she only looked up when the flap lifted, causing a shaft of light to fall across the yurt. Julan let the flap fall closed and Nibani’s penetrating gaze swept over them, her expression unreadable.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

XXIII - The Bones of Han-Sashael

“You’re back!” Shani exclaimed as Fen and Julan entered the storage room. “You’re both all right, aren’t you? And Julan, you don’t have to apologize for anything,” she added as he opened his mouth. “We can talk about it later, but...I think I understand.” She yawned. “I should head for home now. After I got trapped in that cave, I made our wise-woman teach me how to cast teleportation magic, so I suppose I’ll just Recall home now. But do come and say hello soon, won’t you? Or...” Shani smiled hopefully. “Maybe you wouldn’t mind if I came along with you sometimes? I’ve been doing some training, so I’m not as weak as I was. I don’t want to go anywhere too dangerous, I’m no adventurer like you and Julan. But I would like to see more of Vvardenfell.”

Sunday, March 27, 2011

XXII - Explanations

Fen departed early the next morning, making sure to keep herself busy as she alternated between climbing and levitating up the rocky slopes of the Ashlands. She focused all her thoughts on getting to the next precipice, stepping on a rock that would hold her weight, conserving her magicka so she could levitate over a particularly rough section of rock. She didn’t want her mind to stray to Julan, for she felt that if they did, she wouldn’t be able to continue. The fear of finding him dead was too great.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

XXI - The Cavern of the Incarnate

Together, they pushed against the heavy stone doors. The doors opened this time, grating back to reveal darkness. As Fen and Julan stepped into the dim tunnel, the doors swung shut behind them and light flooded into the back of the room, leaving their part of the tunnel in gloom. Fen saw, at the end of a short passage, a large stone statue of a woman, sitting cross-legged with her head bent and her large, algae-covered hands cupped before her. Luminous mushrooms grew out of the walls around her, bathing her in a greenish light that felt warm and safe to Fen. They also lit up several dark, mummified bodies that were huddled along the walls around the statue, their features elven. Fen walked forward as if in a trance, overwhelmed by a sudden desire to see what the woman held out in front of her. Fen placed her hands on the forefingers of the statue, leaning close to see the small white object that was spinning slowly in midair there.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

XX - Kogoruhn

“The ancestors and stars have given me clear signs,” Nibani Maesa sagely, inviting Fen and Julan to sit before her fire. “The lost prophecies leave no doubt – the Incarnate shall be an outlander.” Julan snorted slightly and Fen elbowed him sharply. Nibani Maesa either didn’t notice or ignored this, and went on. “You, blessed by Azura, must lift the seven curses of Dagoth Ur. Prophecy has shown the seven steps of the Nerevarine’s path, and I have been chosen as your guide for each step on that path. I will read the signs, and show you the way. It is time for you to walk the path of the Seven Visions, and pass the Seven Trials of the Seven Visions.” She folded her hands in her lap and studied Fen intently.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

XIX - Shani (part 2)

Nibani Maesa had said to return when the moon had come and gone. Fen reasoned that this meant a month, and she and Julan spent most of Evening Star doing guild jobs for Skink-In-Tree’s-Shade and tracking down the remaining propylon indices for Folms Mirel in Caldera. A few of these ventures took them to Sixth House bases, which were easy to clear out, albeit physically and mentally draining for both of them.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

XVIII - Shani (part 1)

Slipping these books into her bag, Fen slammed the chest shut and nearly sprinted outside. It was late in the afternoon and Julan would come looking for her soon, but she was too intent on finding answers to care. She cast water-walking on herself and jogged around the craggy islands to Tel Fyr, then retraced her steps back down to the Corprusarium. Vistha-Kai surveyed her critically.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

XVII - Holamayan

Frostfall was only just beginning to rear its head as Fen and Julan stepped into Blatta Hateria’s long, blue-sailed sloop. It was dusk, and there was a heavy chill hanging in the air and atop the water. They settled themselves on the bench in the centre of the sloop, Fen hugging her arms to her sides for warmth, as Blatta untied the rope, coiled it up, and dropped it to the sloop’s floor. “It’s a long ride,” she said, sitting down and taking the tiller as they pushed away from Ebonheart. The sky overhead had quickly grown dark, and the water was peppered with the reflections of stars. “It’ll be nearly morning by the time we get there. Might as well take a bit of a kip.” The night darkened quickly and the air was sharp and cold away from the insulation of the city. Taking Blatta Hateria’s advice, Fen wrapped herself up in her cloak and laid down between two of the benches, lulled into sleep by the gentle rocking of the boat.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

XVI - The Ministry of Truth

Fen sat down on a driftwood log before the campfire and stared out at the dark waves, watching them crash into the tall vertical stones rising up out of the water. If she closed her eyes and breathed in the salty sea smell, she could almost imagine that she was on the beach of the Padomaic Ocean, where she had traveled with her grandmother for outings as a child. She had loved the ocean – the way the dazzling water stretched out thousands and thousands of miles, fading into whiteness on the horizon, starkly different from where it crashed up against the cliffs of Ghorne and fell back in on itself in a frothy white spray. She and her grandmother would sit on the beach for hours, Fen trying to find a pattern in the way the waves moved while her grandmother stroked her hair and told her stories of the Dawn Era.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

XV - Tel Fyr

The sky over Balmora was bleak and dark when they stepped out of the Mages’ Guild. Julan had given Fen a plain dark robe with a hood to wear, both of them agreeing that it would be best if her affliction was kept a secret. Fen followed Julan across the River Odai with her head bowed, the hood pulled low over her disfigured face. When Julan knocked on the Spymaster’s door, Fen was surprised to see he let the two of them enter and did not throw Julan out again.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

XIV - Corprus

The inside of Ilunibi looked like any other cavern. There was a sudden, steep drop right at the entrance and a waterfall into a small underground pond, then a low hallway beyond that. They levitated down past the waterfall and entered the hallway, which quickly let out into a much larger area.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Thoughts on Skyrim

So I finally managed to get hold of the February issue of Game Informer (after phoning every GameStop in my area every single day for two weeks...it's a wonder they haven't blocked my number). Here is my [very, very, very long] opinion of it. Enjoy.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

XIII - Ilunibi

Late the next morning, Fen rolled up the tent and sent Julan back to Ald’ruhn, telling him to meet her in Balmora. She set a mark in the Urshilaku camp, figuring she would be coming back again, then recalled to Caius Cosades’ doorstep. It felt strange to be in the squalour of the back corner of Balmora again after her long trek through the lonely, wind-beaten Ashlands.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

XII - The Nerevarine Prophecies

“This is my father’s bow,” Sul-Matuul said, taking the Bonebiter bow reverently in his hands and gazing up at the ceiling of the yurt, his eyes closed.. “You have completed the initiation rite. I name you Fen, Clanfriend of the Ashlanders.” He held the bow out to her, and Fen took it carefully and strung it across her back. “Keep it, and bear it with honor. You are a friend of our tribe, and may rest in any Urshilaku bed, but do not harm other tribe members, or take their things. And now I will fulfill my other promise. Go to the wise woman’s yurt, and Nibani Maesa shall examine you, and test you against the Nerevarine prophecies.”

Saturday, January 1, 2011

XI - The Urshilaku Camp

I hope you all had a safe and happy new year :)

“Nice of you to show up,” Cosades said as the door banged shut behind Fen. “How long ago did I tell you to be here, Operative?”