When I last spoke with Delphine, she believed the Thalmor were somehow involved with the resurrection of dragons in Skyrim. To get more information she wanted me to sneak into the Thalmor embassy and see if I could dig up any related intelligence. Sneaking in was a solo mission so Lydia and I parted ways for a few days. I’ve become so used to her company, it was sort of sad not to have someone by my side in battles.
A party was to be held at the Thalmor embassy in the northeastern most area of Skyrim and Delphine not only had a way to get me in, she also had a man on the inside that would be able to sneak my gear in. I traveled to Solitude (also in northeastern Skyrim) and met Malborn, Delphine’s contact in a bar. We had a succinct chat and I gave him necessary equipment: weapons and armor.
Although before that meeting, I witnessed an execution. As soon as I entered Solitude, I was taken aback by the hoopla a forming crowd was making. A criminal was being beheaded for opening the gates and letting Ulfric Stormcloak evade capture by Imperial forces, Solitude is aligned with the Imperials after all. There was some dissension from the crowd on whether the punishment fit the crime however.
Delphine had a carriage prepared for me at a farm just outside of Solitude and she took the remainder of my gear before sending me off. It was a fairly short trip to the embassy where I had no problems getting in. Another guest was arriving when I was and he smelled strongly of liquor. This soiree was hosted by a high elf named Elenwen who immediately began chatting with me. She recognized that she didn’t recognize me and luckily, Malborn was able to get her attention before she figured anything out. I mingled with other guests and talked with Maven Black-Briar, who hinted at my past and a few other bigwigs from Skyrim including a few high elves.
When I spoke with Malborn he needed me to create a distraction before we could leave unnoticed. The guest I arrived with had been cut off from obtaining drinks and I thought it’d be generous of me to get him one. All I asked of him was a distraction. Oblivious to my intentions he arose and made a toast at which point Malborn and I took our leave through the kitchen.
Malborn smuggled my goods inside the embassy and they were in a hallway connecting the kitchen to a set of rooms. Fully equipped I began making my way through the embassy, avoiding guards if I could and killing the ones I couldn’t. I ventured outside and into another building until I found some evidence. It suggested to me that Thalmor had nothing to do with the dragon’s revival; they were as weary of them as we were. I found this evidence inside a chest along with some documentation on Delphine.
Inside this second building was a prison where a prisoner was getting whipped when I entered. The guards didn’t notice me entering and I overheard them asking about an old man. Before they lacerated him too much, I quietly killed these guards and freed the prisoner. We began talking when we were interrupted by a squad of guards with Malborn. I rescued him and we had to take our leave as the high elves were onto us. A hole the guards used to dispose of bodies was our exit and once free, I talked at length with the prisoner. He told us the old man the elves were inquiring about was, like Delphine, a Blade and alongside her, probably the only other one remaining.
I met back up with Lydia in Solitude and told her of my espionage on our way back to Riverwood. Delphine was in shock when I told her that another Blade was rumored to be alive. She believed it must be a man named Esbern. The prisoner told me that the high elves believed Esbern had a link to the dragon’s revival and he resided in the deepest sections of the Ratway underneath Riften, our next destination.