Location:- City of Winterhold.
Date:- 2E 585 Morning Star Morndas 18th
The snow storms from the previous days had abated to allow the sun to break through to warm the city streets briefly before they returned with a vengeance. The citizens of the city took advantage of the break in the weather to enjoy the sun and to look for food amongst the various stores within the city. Children ran free down the city streets playing games of tag with snowballs, some of which went astray to hit some of the adults browsing the stalls much to the children’s amusement. One of which flew straight into Valkor's hook nosed face which made him splutter and turn red with rage as he wiped the remains out of his eyes he shouted at the children shaking his fists. This only made the children laugh even more at his misfortune as they ran past him knocking him to one side as they carried on playing their games. As his vision cleared he looked around frantically looking for the culprits, his anger cooled as he saw two women walk past him with two children in tow. One woman had long blond hair with the features of nord descent, the other woman with her had imperial features with long black hair and green eyes. He spun round to watch them walk away as a twisted sneer spread across his face at the recognition of the blond haired nord woman.
"Gresla Shatter-Shield." he muttered under his breath all thoughts of retribution to the children who had attacked him with snowballs fading along with the pain of his arthritis in his knees and ankles that had been plaguing him since his arrival in the cold climate of the Winterhold.
He quickly made the decision to follow Gresla back to her accommodation in the hopes it would lead him to her husband Volk Shatter-Shield and his partner in crime Left-Paw-Alight.
As he followed the two women he watched as they browsed the market stalls and chatted, at one point the young girl started to cry and hold her arms up to Gresla who stopped talking to pick up the young girl to carry her for a while. The young boy seemed fascinated by the crowds, Valkor saw in his young features the same characteristics as his father Volk. He watched the two women pick over the various cloths from all over Tamriel which had been delivered into port by the merchant ships that gave the city its life blood during these harsh times of war and winter. His one big burning question that was eating away at his inquisitive mind was “What was a thane of Whiterun doing here with his family in this city?”
After a while they all headed away from the market to a local tavern and went inside. Valkor gave it a few minutes and entered the establishment himself.
The common room had a few patrons sat at various tables eating and drinking with a few regulars sitting along the bar talking to the inn's staff as they drank mead and ale. The fire was burning fierce within its pit in the centre of the room which chased away any remaining chills the patrons would have as they enjoyed their food and drinks. Mixed with the smell of burning pine wood and cooking there was the faint smell of stale mead and beer as Valkor ordered his meal and drink at the bar before making his way over to an empty table in a darkened corner of the common room in a small alcove. He scanned the room looking for Gresla and her two brats, sounds of footsteps running down the stairs caught his attention as his gaze looked at the foot of the stairs a young nord boy emerged grinning as he looked back up the stairway and shouted “ Beat you father.” with a laugh.
Subconsciously Valkor pulled his cowl further forward over his head to cover his handsome and distinguished features as he sat back in the shadows, his eyes never leaving the foot of the stairs as he watched Volk, Left-Paw-Alight followed by the imperial woman and a dunmer with a patch over his left eye appear and walk over to a large group of tables that had been set for them. The two women along with the small girl followed the group of men to sit at the tables which had been arranged for their company.
Valkor grinned as his mind started to work overtime about what all this meant, he knew dunmer had dealings with skooma and slaves. With the knowledge that Volk and Left-Paw-Alight were already involved somehow with the skooma trade he just needed hard evidence. What worried him was were the two women also involved or innocent to the whole affair? How would he deal with the children if both parents are involved? Maybe he could just throw the two brats into the harbour and be done with them, casualties to justice; like father like son better to deal with them now before they grow up and cause problems for the jarls. Valkor smiled at this thought and of his own clans rise to thane in place of the Shatter-Shield clan.
He carried on observing the group trying to get as much information before he took his report to the jarl of Winterhold. The first name he obtained was that of the dunmer who the other called Veldam and shortly after that the imperial woman who others called Amesia. As for the two children he didn't take any notice of them until Gresla called the little girl over by the name of Delte. Valkor froze in place his memory knew that name from some where, it took him a few minutes to remember it was from a night in Whiterun three years ago. A dunmer female had entered his jarl's halls and demanded soldiers to combat against cultists in his realm.
Valkor had seen and heard enough, he had the information he needed. Delte was the contact obviously not present due to her boat being delayed by the storms off the coast. He now needed men to help him investigate this group and keep watch for the dunmer female arriving by ship with the skooma. He left a few coins for the drink and his meal as he stood up form his table and walked out of the inn back out onto the streets where the snow had begun to fall once more.
The gathering of the Shatter-Shield family and their friends were in a jubilant mood and the ice between Veldam and Volk had thawed. Gresla, Amesia and the two children sat in awe as the men retold their adventures and battles in Cyrodiil. Fraki sat amazed by the stories about his father, Veldam and Left-Paw-Alight fighting slavers, vampires and their various skirmishes against the Dominion and Covenant forces. They eventually finished their meals and Left-Paw-Alight sat back in his chair as he wiped the foam off his snout from the fresh beer the barmaid had brought over to the table, a contented smile on his face as his friends laughed and talked of old adventures and the future. Slowly his eyelids dropped and he started to fall asleep, his time playing with the two Shatter-Shield children had taken its toll out of the old argonian.