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Dawnguard

The Dawnguard

The Dawnguard is an ancient order of vampire hunters that once existed during the Second Era, but have long since disbanded. It was refounded by Isran as an unofficial offshoot of the Vigilants of Stendarr, after he was expelled from their order when his methods became too extreme even for them. Isran, on the other hand, believes that the Vigilants became complacent and this is what led to their downfall, a fate he will not let befall the Dawnguard.

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    Entire faction 
  • Big Fancy Castle: Fort Dawnguard, which dwarfs forts used by the Legion or the Stormcloaks.
  • Dark Secret: According to Florentius, the original Dawnguard used to pillage towns and blame it on vampires. Whatever the truth is, their loot is hidden in a mine under the castle, accessible only through the use of their anti-vampire spells.
    • Sorine says that the original Dawnguard had a powerful vampire locked in their dungeon, but all turned to vampires themselves when they realized how powerful he was.
  • Grey And White Morality: The Dawnguard are perhaps the only truly "good" faction in Skyrim, because aside from Florentius claiming that the old Dawnguard looted villages (some of which might have already been under the influence of vampires at the time), you don't see them harming innocents in the storyline. However, the Dovahkiin may become the most morally questionable Dawnguard - mercilessly putting down vampires in daylight, or wielding a Daedric artifact of the patron god of vampires, or being the unfettered force of purging all things undead, or being a fugitive turned vampire hunter.
  • Hunter of Monsters: They're an order of vampire hunters.
  • Kill 'Em All: The fate of the reformed Dawnguard if you choose to side with the vampires. After defeating Harkon, you get to exterminate every single one of them.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Everyone you ask will have a different version of the original Dawnguard's fate:
    • Isran believes they served honorably, and had to eventually put down the Jarl's son, but continued to work as vampire hunters.
    • Sorine believes they were turned into vampires themselves and preyed on the population.
    • Florentius says that Arkay told him the Dawnguard would raid civilian villages and blame vampires for it. Unlike the others, he can somewhat back up his claim, as he mentions caches of loot they left behind which can only be opened by their spells - and these can indeed be found.
  • The Order: One that previously existed supposedly for the purpose of hunting vampires.
  • Order Reborn: Regardless of what the Dawnguard actually used to be, Isran's aim is to restore it to combat the new vampire threat.
  • Post-Climax Confrontation: If you joined Clan Volkihar, completing the DLC's storyline unlocks a sidequest consisting of attacking Fort Dawnguard and killing the members.
  • The Power of the Sun: Their entire motif is using this trope to destroy Vampires, to the point that the DLC adds "sun damage" as a new type of damage. Their equipment pieces are adorned with the image of a flaming sun, their unique "Rune" weapons deal sun damage, and their unique spells take the form of projectiles and auras of light.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The Dawnguard, especially its most prominent members, feature a rather perplexing mix of odd individuals including:
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: The purpose of the original Dawnguard from the Second Era. The Order was founded with the express purpose of keeping the Jarl of Riften's son imprisoned within Fort Dawnguard after he contracted vampirism.
  • The Team: The main members of the Dawnguard form this dynamic, should you choose to side with them.
    • Isran as The Leader, the guy who reforms the Dawnguard in the first place.
    • Gunmar, a former associate of Isran's whose relative friendliness balances out Isran's abrasive personality, serves as The Lancer.
    • Sorine, the resident Gadgeteer Genius and one of the more Crazy-Prepared of the bunch, is the resident Smart Girl.
    • The Dragonborn themselves serves as The Big Guy; being Skyrim's resident One-Man Army, they do most of the heavy lifting.
    • Florentius, the quirky expert on Restoration magic who may or may not be getting valuable information for the group from Arkay, serves as The Face.
    • Serana, after she turns Defector from Decadence and joins up, serves as a Sixth Ranger. She is initially not trusted due to being a vampire, but after she demonstrates her dedication to stopping Harkon, even Isran warms up to her and she stays with the Dawnguard even after the main plot is finished.
  • Weapon of Choice: The signature weapon of the Dawnguard is the crossbow.

    Isran 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/isran_9590.JPG
"I knew it would come to this one day. I knew... and no one believed."

Founder of the modern Dawnguard. Former Vigilant of Stendarr. He's long tried to warn people of the coming vampire threat, but was never taken seriously until it was almost too late. This has left him a bitter man obsessed with destroying vampires.

  • Anti-Hero: Of the more abrasive sort; the guy's an asshole, but he has genuinely good motives.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: The guy's good.
  • Badass Baritone: His voice is among the deepest of all the Dawnguard members, and in fact one of the deepest in the game, period.
  • Badass Beard: A long, bushy one befitting a grizzled vampire hunter.
  • Bald, Black Leader Guy: A Redguard with no hair, who's also the leader.
  • Drop the Hammer: Wields a two-handed warhammer.
  • Expy: Of Blade. Hell, he even sounds like Wesley Snipes' rendition of the character.
  • The Extremist Was Right: It's like this trope was made for him.
  • Good Is Not Nice: The other tropes have probably told you that.
  • Grumpy Old Man: Rather short tempered, enough to drive away the other Dawnguard members. Right when they're needed most.
  • I Warned You: His response to the destruction of the Hall of the Vigilant. He does express sympathy for all the deaths, however.
  • Ignored Expert: The Vigilants ignored him and paid the price by being wiped out.
  • "It" Is Dehumanizing: He's incredibly rude to Serana when she tries to help and refers to her as "it" when speaking to you. By the time you return with Auriel's bow, he's thawed a little and will at least call her "she." She proves herself in the raid on Castle Volkihar, and after that he accepts her.
  • Jerkass: Isran has previously insulted or driven away almost every other member of the Dawnguard, which is part of the reason he needs the Dragonborn to recruit them. Even when Dexion (member of an immensely respected order of scholars) arrives in Fort Dawnguard, he'll note that Isran was rather unpleasant with him. When speaking to Sorine, she frequently comments that she hopes the Dovahkiin is getting along with Isran since "he takes some getting used to," and she and Gunmar can be heard having private conversations about his abrasiveness.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Considering the Vigilants were all but wiped out by a vampire attack, his criticism of them being too soft and underestimating the vampire threat rings true.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He does have a soft side, though it's well hidden. The scene where he teaches Agmaer how to use a crossbow comes best to mind. He's also not entirely unreasonable; he (very grudgingly) tolerates Serana's involvement in the effort to stop Harkon, and if he finds out that you're a vampire, he'll simply tell you to get it cured before you talk to him rather than kill you on the spot.
  • Killed Off for Real: Averted during the Dawnguard storyline. He and Viarmo of the Bard's College are notably the only faction leaders who don't drop dead in order to make you the leader.
    • Played straight however if one decides to side with the vampires, as one side mission involves raiding the castle where he will be killed.
  • Knight Templar: He puts his vampire hunting above everything else, such as saving innocent lives, and unlike Gunmar, he has hatred as one of his primary motives. It got to the point where he was kicked out of the Vigilants of Stendarr for it.
  • Light 'em Up: Will use the spells "Vampire's Bane" and "Stendarr's Aura" in combat against vampires.
  • Magic Knight: Battles vampires with both magic and his warhammer.
  • Made of Iron: He's a Master Trainer of Heavy Armor, so this is expected. He's also flagged essential (for a Dawnguard-allied playthrough) and cannot be killed, even during the raid on Castle Volkihar.
  • Mentor Occupational Hazard: Averted. He's actually the one of the few leaders of a main quest line that doesn't die.
  • No Social Skills: He's incredibly blunt, which others find off-putting.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • After all is said and done with Harkon, Isran tells Serana that he knows it was difficult to kill her father, and gives her sincere thanks for her help. He also lets her stay at Fort Dawnguard with no questions asked.
    • His initial reaction at the news that the Vigilants of Stendarr are being attacked by Vampires is I Warned You. But when Tolan clarifies that everyone at the Hall of the Vigilant is dead, including Keeper Carcette, Isran is shocked and his demeanor immediately changes to clarify that he never wanted this and appologizes for what's happened.
    • He immediately takes Agmaer under his wing (despite his obvious lack of combat training) and begins training him with a crossbow.
  • Power Of Hate: Hate is what keeps him strong, in his own words anyway.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: According to the Prima strategy guide, his family was killed by vampires, which is why he hates them so much. His actions are driven mostly by this hatred rather than keeping people safe, as opposed to Gunmar, who had the same thing happen but a different reaction.
  • Rousing Speech: Before the Dawnguard head out to storm Castle Volkihar, Isran takes a moment to rally their spirits with a speech.
  • Scary Black Man: A black guy, leading an organization of tough warriors that exterminates vampires. Even his voice is intimidating.
  • Van Helsing Hate Crimes: He believes all vampires should be destroyed, even those who are trying to help him, or are rather benign. Despite this, he allows Serana to stay as a member of the Dawnguard and even thanks her for helping the Dawnguard defeat Harkon's mad scheme - if you're following the Dawnguard's questline, of course. In this way, he's similar to Delphine, but slightly less narrow-minded.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: As good as his motives are, when the Vigilants of Stendarr think you're an extremist, it's something worth pondering.

    Gunmar 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/gunmar_6204.JPG

Expert animal hunter and trainer, known for taming trolls. Former associate of Isran. The Dovahkiin recruits him into the Dawnguard. He will sell the Dovahkiin pet Armored Trolls.

  • All There in the Manual: His backstory is listed in the Prima strategy guide: his family was killed by vampires. Rather than going on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge and being consumed by hatred like Isran, his reaction was to devote his life to keeping people safe so that they wouldn't experience the same pain he had to endure, and that's what mainly motivates him when faced with the vampire threat.
  • Badass Beard: See the picture.
  • The Big Guy: Isran even described him as a 'big brute of a Nord'.
  • The Beastmaster: Tames trolls and sticks armour on them.
  • The Blacksmith: He makes most of the bolts for the crossbows. He's also a Master Trainer of Smithing, meaning that he's evidently as good as Eorlund Gray-Mane.
  • From Bad to Worse: He asked himself how fighting trolls could get any worse, and his line of thought came up with Armored Trolls.
  • Great White Hunter: When you find him, he's hunting down a bear who has already killed several people. Considering how aggressive the bears in Skyrim are, you can understand why he feels a need to kill it.
  • Nice Guy: In spite of having suffered the same tragedies as Isran, he's a very amicable person.
  • Rated M for Manly: A big, muscular Nord blacksmith who hunts down bears in his spare time. He also wears a unique sleeveless version of the Dawnguard armor.
  • Vampire Hunter: He sends you on various vampire-hunting side quests.

    Sorine Jurard 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/sorinejurard_5104.jpg

A Breton Dwemer expert and crossbow maker. A former associate of Isran, she too is recruited by the Dovahkiin. She uses Dwemer blueprints to improve the Dawnguard's crossbow technology.

    Florentius Baenius 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/florentius_6519.JPG

A priest of Arkay, he's another former associate of Isran, Gunmar, and Sorine Jurard. He literally hears Arkay talk to him in his head, or so he claims. He is eccentric, to say the least.

  • Absent-Minded Professor: Leaving aside that he has very casual conversations with his god, aloud, he's often strangely and rather blithely unaware of what goes on around him. Forgetting which potions he has in stock, for example, or failing to notice the expedition he was part of becoming corrupted and mind-controlled... right up until they tried to corrupt him, failed, and locked him up.
  • Cloud Cuckoolander: His... weirdness and Hearing Voices tendency caused Isran to kick him out and refuse to have you recruit him. Isran only relents due to the crisis the Dawnguard faces, and only if Florentius will maintain some "pretense of normalcy".
  • Combat Medic: Once recruited, he'll wear the armor of a member of the Dawnguard, and fights alongside you in the final battle against Clan Volkihar.
    Florentius: Leave the little ones for Arkay and me! You find the leader!
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: People often make fun of him for his weird tendencies. He also claims to have defeated thirty vampires with his bare hands once, and that Arkay can back him up on that claim. When you raid Castle Volkihar, he proves that he can indeed hold his own in a fight.
  • Hearing Voices: Claims it's Arkay talking to him. The game hints he might be right, as he often displays knowledge he should not otherwise possess - like how to access the original Dawnguard's stashes, or when vampires kidnap the loved ones of the Dovahkiin. When you rescue the kidnapped person, they'll occasionally wonder how you knew to rescue them.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: It's not clear if he's actually speaking to Arkay or just suffering from a mental disorder. On one hand, he's barely aware of his surroundings at best. On the other hand, some of the things he claims Arkay told him are pieces of information that he couldn't otherwise know.
  • The Medic: His role in the Dawnguard is to sell the Dovahkiin potions and Restoration spells. He's also a Master Trainer for Restoration.
  • Pals with Jesus: If the conversations he holds with "him" are any indications, Florentius and Arkay talk like an old married couple.
    "Look, I've just gotten myself out of quite a mess here, in case you haven't noticed, and while I appreciate your help, I... What's that? No, that's not what I... Yes, but... Are you sure? Really? Fine. Arkay says it's a good idea for me to go. I don't agree, but he's not the sort of fellow you can just ignore. I'll see you at Fort Dawnguard, then. Don't worry, Arkay will show me the way."
  • So Proud of You: He gets in an odd version of this after the assault on Castle Volkihar, saying that he "knew it all along" that you would succeed, though he adds that Arkay had doubts about it.
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    Celann 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/celann_9739.JPG

Voiced by: Jon Curry

A former Vigilant of Stendarr, who left the order with Isran, but later split with him over conduct. One of the first people Isran recruited for the reformed Dawnguard.

  • An Axe to Grind: His main weapon.
  • Badass Beard: Has no level cap and quite a nice beard.
  • Everyone Has Standards: He may have considered the Vigil too soft, but eventually he thought of Isran as too extreme.
  • Killed Off for Real: Possibly, during the raid on Castle Volkihar or if you have him as a follower or choose to make him a steward at one of your homes or a Blade.
  • Knight Templar: Like Isran, when you consider the Vigilant of Stendarr too soft, it's time to re-examine your philosophy.

    Durak 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/durak_9328.JPG
"You there. The Dawnguard is looking for anyone willing to fight against the growing vampire menace. What do you say?"

Voiced by: Noah Nelson

An Orc who lost two wives to vampires. He will occasionally travel the towns and tell the Dovahkiin about the Dawnguard.

  • Archer Archetype: He is very good at archery, stealth and light armor.
  • An Axe to Grind: He wields a Dawnguard war axe.
  • Bilingual Bonus: His name means "fool" in Russian, though it's a Non-Indicative Name, other than the usual follower Artificial Stupidity.
  • Bow and Sword, in Accord: Will switch to his axe when in close combat.
  • Clean Dub Name: In Russian, his name was changed to Dorak, as Durak is Russian for "fool" or "dumbass".
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With the Dragonborn, if you remain with the Dawnguard. He'll even send word to the Orc Strongholds that you're trustworthy and can be allowed inside.
  • Heartbroken Badass: He's lost two wives to vampires, and for that reason he's fighting the good fight. He also has no level cap.
  • Herald: Initially Durak will be wandering Skyrim looking for recruits, so he'll most likely be the first member of the Dawnguard you encounter and thus the one that kick-starts the Dawnguard storyline.
  • You Killed My Father: Toward vampires.

    Agmaer 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/agmaer_9292.JPG

Voiced by: Jason Marsden

A young Nord farmboy who joins the Dawnguard with the Dragonborn.

    Ingjard 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ingjard_2957.png

A Nord woman who joins the Dawnguard.

  • Action Girl: Being a woman doesn't stop her being a vampire hunter.
  • Condescending Compassion: Regards you as having this if you heal her. "I suppose you think that makes you better than me."
  • Cute Bruiser: Her high skills in Heavy Armor and Two-Handed and her lack of a level cap make her quite the formidable fighter, and she's not half-bad looking either.
  • Drop the Hammer: Her default weapon is a two-handed warhammer.
  • Not in This for Your Revolution: There are a few hints that she's not as fanatical about the vampire-fighting thing as the rest of the Dawnguard. She's the only member that will remain on friendly terms with a Dawnguard-aligned Dragonborn if they become a Vampire Lord, and if you take the vampire path, she won't be present at Fort Dawnguard when you show up to kill everybody, presumably having decided to get the heck out of Dodge. This is due to her appearing in Fort Dawnguard during the Prophet quest if you side with the Dawnguard. If siding with the vampires, she never appears in the game.
  • Recurring Extra: She doesn't have a huge role, but still fights alongside you.

    Beleval 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/beleval_7481.png

A Bosmer woman who joins the Dawnguard.

  • Action Girl: Like most other female Dawnguard members.
  • Bi the Way: Acts just as flirty with men and women.
  • An Axe to Grind: Wields a Dawnguard war axe as her default weapon in battle.
  • Jumped at the Call: She believes that Skyrim is her land as much as the Nords claim it is theirs, and for this reason, she's joined the Dawnguard.
  • Power High: Downplayed, but when you heal her, she'll be surprised - then say in a sultry voice, "Oh! That felt nice."
  • Recurring Extra: She doesn't have that much prominence in the story, although she does get a bit more dialogue if you play as an elf.
  • The Tease: A lot of her lines sound flirty and if you heal her, she sounds ''very'' pleased. When exiting conversation, she may say "See you around, handsome." if you are male, or "See you around, my beauty." if you are female.
  • Token Minority: The only elf in the Dawnguard, unless the Dovahkiin is one. She's also notable as being the only female Wood Elf follower in the game.
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    Bran and Sceolang 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/bran_and_sceolang_6961.png

A pair of dogs that Gunmar has trained to help the Dawnguard. They can be adopted as pets if Hearthfire is downloaded.

  • Badass Adorable: Both of them qualify. They may not level up that far, but can certainly dish out some damage.
  • Heroic Dog: Both of them qualify, being vampire hunting dogs.
  • Historical In-Joke: Their names are a reference to the legend of Fionn mac Cumhaill, a Celtic hero whose two war hounds were named Bran and Sceolang.
  • Non-Standard Character Design: Most dogs in Skyrim resemble Irish wolfhounds. These two are both husky dogs.

    Novice Hakar 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hakar_7167.png

A useless recruit meant to resupply the arms caches across Skyrim.

  • The Chew Toy: He only appears as a random encounter, proves he's useless at the job he's been given, and quits because he's crapping his pants in terror.
  • Dirty Coward: In all fairness, it is a dangerous and scary job.
  • The Klutz: Why he's so bad at his job.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: He leaves after you save him, claiming he's not cut out for the job.
  • Taking You with Me: Despite the above, you can occasionally find him dead as a random encounter surrounded by several dead vampires.

Clan Volkihar

    Entire faction 
  • Big Fancy Castle: Castle Volkihar, which has clearly seen better days. If you take over the Clan, you can clean it up a little.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: They were first mentioned in the in-game book Immortal Blood, which debuted in Oblivion.
  • Deadly Decadent Court: A player who joins the house will become the target of two different backstabbing plots in their first mission.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Reddish-orange ones.
  • Hunter of His Own Kind: Unapologetically, due to their status as Supernatural Elite. They view any vampires that aren't elite as beasts little better than the mortals they prey on, and if they feel the "thin-blooded ones" are inconveniencing them in any way, they kill them. A large number of radiant quests, should the Dragonborn side with the Volkihar, are to kill uppity/problematic lesser vampires.
  • I Have Your Wife: Clan Volkihar will pull this on a Dawnguard-aligned Dovahkiin, kidnapping their friends or even their spouse.
  • Informed Attribute: The in-game tome Immortal Blood claims Volkihar vampires have the ability to pass through solid ice without breaking it, but none of the clan do this in-game, nor can the Dragonborn if they become one.
  • Jabba Table Manners: If the blood splatters and bones strewn about Castle Volkihar are any indication, these vampires are rather messy eaters.
  • Looks Like Orlok: In Vampire Lord form.
  • Monster Lord: Thanks to their greater connection to Molag Bal, the Volkihar are indeed Vampire Lords, combining all the strengths of the vampiric condition with an extremely powerful One-Winged Angel form, which they can access even while not starved.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: Claim to be "pure-blood" compared to the other vampires in the game, who are "just a disease."
  • Really 700 Years Old: Varies from vampire to vampire, but several recognize Serana upon her return, making them at least seven hundred years old.
  • The Renfield: That's probably what the unnamed Watchman is, the guy which greets you the first time you visit Castle Volkihar. He isn't a vampire and is presumed to be a thrall.
  • Supernatural Elite: They're among the most elite of Tamriel's vampires. They consider other, weaker vampires to be little better than the mortals they prey on. They often target vampires for assassination if they risk spooking the mortals enough to make undeath difficult for the Volkihar.
  • Vampire Monarch: Lord Harkon.
  • Weakened by the Light: Sunlight doesn't kill Elder Scrolls vampires, but it does put a serious crimp on their regenerative abilities.

    Serana 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/serana_2203.JPG

Voiced by: Laura Bailey

Daughter of Lord Harkon and Valerica. Freed from a long, long slumber by the Dovahkiin, and possessor of an Elder Scroll. No matter which faction the Dovahkiin joins in Dawnguard, Serana will end up travelling with them.

  • Abusive Parents: Much of the crux of her relationship with Harkon and Valerica, and the reason she joins the Dovahkiin. Keep in mind that her parents used to be followers of Molag Bal, King of Rape, back when they were mortals. Also, see Rape as Backstory.
  • Action Girl: A powerful destruction mage, a very capable Necromancer, and a vampire on top of all that, Serana does not screw around in battle.
  • Anachronism Stew: A curious in-universe example. Her age is never quite clarified, but based on her dialogue it can be inferred she's been locked in Dimhollow Creek for at least two eras, if not longer, and before that likely spent most of her life among the extremely isolated and aristocratic Volkihar. Most ancient or long-undead characters in the Elder Scrolls speak in very formal or flowery dialects with long-forgotten accents to emphasize their age, but Serana has a vernacular that's closer to modern American English than even most mortal Skyrim characters in the present. Somewhat justified given her friendly, unpretentious nature, but that only explains her informality, not her dialect.note 
  • Artificial Brilliance: Serana will wear her hood when outdoors, and if the player is idle she'll interact with the environment like a normal NPC, including using workstations, sitting down at tables and benches, and more specific environment actions like meditating at High Hrothgar. No other follower does these things.
  • Badass Bookworm: Serana apparently is very well-read. Of course, most of her books are, at the least, hundreds of years out of date.
  • Badass Cape: Wears the same unique Vampire Royal Armor as her parents, which includes one of these.
  • Bi the Way: Seems to be attracted to the Dragonborn, regardless of gender.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Her main reason for helping the Dragonborn is that they are the first person in centuries to show her kindness without any ulterior motives.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Piss her off and she'll turn you into a pincushion with ice-spikes, blast you to Oblivion with lightning, raise your backup as undead and have them hack you to bits, or simply lift you up by the neck and then snap it. That's not even mentioning the walking Divine Intervention that she follows around.
  • Broken Bird: She was turned into a vampire by Molag Bal, the Daedric Prince of Domination himself, so we can infer what that involved. Her parents' marriage was murderous, and she was used as a pawn in her mother's attempt to prevent her father's plans from coming to fruition. Depending on your choices, her only real friend is a member of a vampire-hunting order dedicated to putting her entire subspecies to the torch.
  • Brought Down to Badass: A Dawnguard-aligned Dovahkiin can potentially convince her to cure herself of vampirism. This has no negative effect on her combat skills, but stops her from being able to make the Dragonborn a vampire lord.
  • Buffy Speak: Sometimes lapses into it, usually when what she remembers doesn't match up to its current state.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: When Serana meets her mother, she's very vocal with how upset she still is at having been used by both her and her father in their own schemes, with no thought given to their daughter's feelings or wishes. She also makes a similar speech to her father during the warmup to the final boss battle against him — it actually renders Harkon speechless for a moment.
  • Captain Ersatz:
  • The Champion: A strange case with the Dragonborn as it's very easy to be this for her during the Dawnguard story while she in turn becomes this for you afterwards.
  • Cleavage Window: In her default Vampire Noble outfit. More subtle than most examples, as the "window" shows relatively little cleavage, and it's actually caused by the combination of the armor's low cut and her cape.
  • Cold Sleep, Cold Future: After spending possibly thousands of years entombed in Dimhollow Crypt, she awakens to discover Skyrim embroiled in a bloody Civil War and the Dragons having returned to life to ravage the land. She takes this surprisingly well.
  • Daddy Issues: Oh lord yes. She laments that it all sounds so cliché (or "common" as she terms it). Although considering who daddy is, issues are perfectly understandable. Surprisingly, she doesn't have a matching set of mommy issues until after the Soul Cairn trip.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: A Vampire Lord and a powerful Necromancer, but one of the nicest individuals in Skyrim.
  • Deadpan Snarker: So very much.
    Serana: Who is Skyrim's High King?
    Dragonborn: That's actually a matter of debate.
    Serana: Oh good, a war of succession. Good to know the world didn't get boring while I was gone. Who are the contenders?
  • Deuteragonist: For Dawnguard.
  • Elemental Powers: Wields Icy Spear and Lightning Bolt as her spells of choice, along with the expected Life Drain.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: She's been sealed away for a very long time.
  • Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Other than Lydia, J'zargo, and maybe Erandur, she's the only follower whose name most people remember. Her friendliness is about half of this. The other half is the snark.
  • Gilded Cage: Serana makes several comments implying that she rarely left the confines of Castle Volkihar whilst growing up, so most of her knowledge of Skyrim comes second-hand from books... which are sadly now at least several centuries out of date.
  • Golden Ending: Convincing her to cure her vampirism is arguably this for the Dawnguard side of the storyline. You have to pick some exact dialogue options over the entire questline to unlock it, and even though she generally seems to treat her vampirism more as a blessing than a curse she does sound genuinely relieved after getting cured.
  • Hero of Another Story: As befitting her role as the Deuteragonist of Dawnguard, Serana is embroiled in the middle of a complicated plot that started centuries before the Dragonborn was born, let alone entered into the picture. If following the Dawnguard path, she becomes this once more in between the Dragonborn parting ways with her at Castle Volkihar and deciding to seek them out at Fort Dawnguard.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Can become this or Platonic Life-Partners with the Dragonborn, since marriage isn't an option with her (given the only example in her life, you can't blame her for not wanting to try it).
  • Hunter of Her Own Kind: Should you follow the Dawnguard questline, Serana will express an interest in staying with them to help them hunt vampires, unless you ask her to come along with you.
  • I Hate You, Vampire Dad: Lord Harkon is her father, and the one who pressured her to become a vampire by "offering" herself to Molag Bal, King of Rape. To this day, it's clear Serana still resents him for this, as well as the Daedric Princes.
  • Friendless Background: Whilst growing up and, to a lesser extent, still true. It's implied the Dragonborn is her first real friend in centuries - or possibly ever.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: When talking with her about her family, she gives the impression that what she really wanted in life was just to have a functional, loving family.
  • In the Hood: When outside in the daylight, she will ditch whatever headgear she might have on her to wear a hood to conceal herself from the sun. The hood is notably not an actual piece of equipment, it's in her programming - even if the player uses console commands to strip Serana of all her other equipment including the items that normally cannot be removed, the hood remains floating where it ought to line up with her outfit.
  • Lady of Black Magic: Necromancy and ice spikes and life draining, oh my!
  • Like an Old Married Couple: Despite turning down an offer of marriage if it's made, there are plenty of dialogue options to have her and the Dragonborn engage in playful bickering.
  • Magic Knight: Prefers magic, but will pull out a melee weapon and start swinging if needed, and her One-handed and Light Armor skills are actually a few points higher than her mage skills.
  • Neck Lift: When she encounters Vyrthur, the one responsible for the prophecy that doomed her family, she expresses her displeasure very physically.
    "You were waiting... all this time for someone with my blood to come along. Well, too bad for you... I intend on keeping it. Let's see if your blood has any power to it!"
  • Necromancer: Powerful enough to raise Chaurus Hunters as allies.
  • Nice Girl: She's right up there with Brunwulf, Hadvar, Jordis, Ralof, and just about any other contender for "friendliest NPC in the game".
  • No-Sell: She is immune to Ice magic while a vampire, due to being a Nord and having 50% frost resistance and her 50% vampiric frost resistance.
  • The Not-Love Interest: She shoots down the Dovahkiin if they ask for her hand in marriage, despite showing some interest previously. She tries to let them down gently, though. From her dialogue about being uncomfortable in temples, it's implied that Serana doesn't think she deserves marriage due to her history as a vampire and worshiping Molag Bal. Other dialogue implies that her reticence might also/either be due to having only her parents' marriage as a reference point, and/or it may be that she's concerned that she's at least several centuries your elder. Or maybe all of the above. She's notably the only person that has marriage dialogue that will turn you down.
  • Odd Friendship: Depending on the path the player chooses, it may turn out Serana's only friend is a member of the Dawnguard.
  • Permanently Missable Content: You have to choose certain dialogue options over the Dawnguard questline in order to eventually convince her to cure her vampirism. Many of them are only available during certain quests, and if you miss any of them you're out of luck.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: Despite all of the Ship Tease between herself and the Dragonborn (regardless of gender), and despite the level of trust she puts in you (taking your advice to cure her vampirism with the right dialogue options, showing you her mother, following you into battle, and even joining an anti-vampire organization to side with you), your relationship never advances. She'll act flattered if you propose marriage, but turn it down and continue to be on fantastic terms with the Dragonborn.
  • Protectorate:
    • The Dragonborn can make it very clear to both Lord Harkon and the Dawnguard that she's under their protection. Repeat: The walking divine intervention against dragonkind will not suffer any harm coming to her.
    • Serana herself has moments of this toward the Dragonborn. When you face off with her father she tells Harkon "You will not touch him/her!"
  • Rape as Backstory: Never outright said this way, but to become a vampire, she had to "offer" herself to Molag Bal, the Daedric Prince of Domination, under her parents' orders. And considering the first vampire was born when Molag Bal raped a woman... you see where it's going. Vampirism comes as a reward for "submitting" to the Daedric Prince. Serana makes it clear it's not something she likes remembering; she refers to the process as "degrading." However, if you ask her about her vampirism, she refers to it as a gift, and never seeks a cure for it, unless you say the right things to her in conversation in the course of siding with the Dawnguard. The biggest hint is that when her own mother is asked if Serana underwent the "ordeal" of becoming a vampire willingly, Valerica dodges the question and just says, "It was expected of her."
  • Really 700 Years Old: She's much older than she looks. Word of God states that she was put to sleep during the late second era between the Reman and Septim Empires, which is trope accurate at an approximate seven hundred years before the Dawnguard DLC is set. She implies that she was around when the Dwemer were active, though she may have been joking.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: Subverted; while the outfit she and her parents share bears the color scheme, and the two of them fit to different degrees, Serana is by no stretch of imagination evil regardless of your choices in either questline.
  • Sealed Good in a Can: She's the one unambiguously good vampire in the game (apart from, potentially, the Dragonborn). When she's first encountered, she's magically sealed inside Dimhollow Crypt, until you unintentionally release her.
  • Ship Tease: She's one of the few followers whom you can engage in deep conversation, and if you're nice to her, she ends up truly caring deeply for you and values you as a friend and comrade. Your dialogue choices in getting to this point imply that your character feels the same. Depending on who it was you married, it's very likely that there's more romantic subtext between you and her than you and your spouse.
  • Slept Through the Apocalypse: If the Dragonborn has started the main quest, but not completed it, this means that Serana not only wakes up during Alduin's apocalypse, but accidentally causes Lord Harkon to begin enacting his apocalypse as well. It's literally true if you finish the main quest before releasing her.
    • Heck, she slept through all four of the numbered series games, meaning she slept through MULTIPLE Apocalypses.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Much like Jarl Idgrod and her identically named daughter, examination and slight modification to facial textures in the Creation Kit reveals that Serana is the spitting image of her mother, Valerica.
  • Token Good Teammate: On the Volkihar side, as she's the only vampire to express any respect for mortals. If you side with the vampires and help her take down Harkon, she takes up the position of Vampire Monarch and pledges to make her family's legacy into something respectable.
  • Token Heroic Orc: If she allies herself with the Dawnguard.
  • Undying Loyalty: She might possibly be the single most loyal companion in the game. On the Dawnguard path, she'll knowingly march into a fort full of vampire hunters alone to give the Dragonborn vital information. She'll also trust the Dragonborn not to sell her out if on the Vampire path.

    Lord Harkon 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/harkon1_3385.JPG
"Behold the power! This is the power that I offer! Now, make your choice!"

Voiced by: Neil Dickson

Leader of Clan Volkihar, and father to Serana. Once a mighty king of ancient times, he made a pact with Molag Bal to ensure eternal life for himself, Valerica, and Serana. He seeks to fulfill the prophecy ending the "Tyranny of the Sun". Obsesses over this prophecy so much, he thinks nothing of sacrificing his own daughter to ensure it comes to fruition. His wife became his enemy as she sought to stop him. Harkon will offer to turn the Dovahkiin into a vampire lord as a reward for returning Serana to him.

  • Abusive Parents: His neglect of Serana ultimately turns her against him. If you call him out on it, he says that it was a small price to pay for the betterment of all vampires.
  • Archnemesis Dad: For Serana.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: He's the strongest vampire in the entire Clan. If you become one and then go on to kill him, you take his place.
  • Axe-Crazy: His obsession with destroying the sun has taken a serious toll on his sanity.
  • Beard of Evil: Sports a goatee.
  • Big Bad: For the Dawnguard questline regardless of your allegiance.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Under normal circumstances, he would easily be the biggest threat in the game... except he is competing with Alduin, Miraak, and Hermaeus Mora. Needless to say he is hopelessly outclassed by both the Dragonborn and the other villains floating around.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: Letting you live if you refuse his gift of vampirism comes back to bite him in the ass, to say the least. Hell, even giving you the gift of vampirism may count, as the Dovahkiin may be extremely powerful by this point and easily capable of killing him without the powerup.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Quite capable of this, as it's practically a Clan tradition. This is a reason why, if you're a vampire, Serana comes to the realisation that you'll have to kill him to stay alive.
  • Cool Sword: Carries a unique sword with a nifty Vampiric Draining effect that absorbs health, magicka, and stamina, which only works if wielded by a vampire. However, since he's fought in Vampire Lord form, he doesn't actually get to use it.
  • Deal with the Devil: Was so fearful of dying that he sacrificed thousands of innocents to become a true-blooded vampire.
  • Did Not Think This Through: He plans to permanently block out the sun so Vampires can hunt whenever they want. He overlooked or ignored the fact that this would make many more enemies than they already have, as his wife Valerica mentions; it could end the Civil War by motivating the Empire of Cyrodiil, the Stormcloaks, and maybe even the Aldmeri Dominion to work together against vampires. He also hasn't factored in, nor does he even acknowledge, the return of Skyrim's dragons, despite their return being part of the prophecy he's trying to fulfill (and who would not like the bloodsucking upstarts hunting their subjects and defying Akatosh by messing with the sun) or Alduin. On top of all of this, as pointed out by another character, permanently blotting out the sun would inevitably extinguish all life, leaving vampires without anybody or anything to feed on.
  • Establishing Character Moment: You meet him when you first enter his castle, and return his daughter — who disappeared centuries earlier, leaving him no idea of what happened to her. The very first words that come out of his mouth are "My long-lost daughter returns at last! I trust you have my Elder Scroll?" Serana immediately lampshades that that's the first thing on his mind upon seeing her again.
  • Evil Overlord: He's a vampire lord.
  • Fantastic Racism: He does not like mortals. Or werewolves. Or common vampires. Or just about anything that isn't a pure-blood vampire, viewing them all as inferior.
  • Faux Affably Evil: He's very happy you returned his daughter to him, and offers the greatest "reward" - turning you into a vampire. Refuse and he'll essentially tell you to piss off and die. Accept and he'll later muse that not everyone actually survives becoming a Volkihar vampire. He has an interesting definition of reward.
  • Final Boss: Of the Dawnguard DLC.
  • Flunky Boss: During the fight against him, he'll throw a small army of skeletons and gargoyles at you... which Serana can then reanimate against him. Whoops.
  • "Get Back Here!" Boss: Half of his boss fight is catching up to him as he teleports around the room throwing spells at you.
  • I Hate You, Vampire Dad: If the Dovahkiin accepts his offer, they'll still wind up killing him.
  • Immortals Fear Death: His fear of dying is what motivated him to jump merrily over the Moral Event Horizon to become a pure vampire.
  • Immortality Immorality: He says that he sacrificed over a thousand innocents to gain vampirism from Molag Bal.
  • Kryptonite Factor: Like all vampires, he's vulnerable to Auriel's bow and the Sunblessed Elven Arrows that go with it. In addition, during his boss fight, the arrows can negate his healing barrier, making the fight easier.
  • No Body Left Behind: Unlike other vampires, he simply dissolves into blood-red ashes when killed.
  • One-Winged Angel: As a Vampire Lord, he has this ability.
  • Orcus on His Throne: Apparently the tyranny of the sun isn't that big an issue, given that Harkon apparently spent several thousand years not finding the keys to his plan. In fairness to him, he's searching for three Elder Scrolls and the mythical weapon of a god, all of which have a habit of not staying put. Not to mention that one of the three Elder Scrolls he needs is on an entirely different plane of existence to which he likely couldn't get — if he even knew about it.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: His uniform.
  • Removed Achilles' Heel: The prophecy he wishes to fulfill involves blotting out the sun with a permanent eclipse, which would allow Tamriel's vampires to hunt freely without being hindered by their weakness to sunlight. This results in some Genre Blindness... as it stands, only the Dawnguard ever take any aggressive actions against the vampires, whereas blotting out the sun would create many more enemies. Dialogue with Valerica highlights this; see Pragmatic Villainy in her entry below.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: You're given the option to hand over Auriel's Bow to him in your final battle. You still have to fight him, but it deprives you of the means to negate his healing barrier.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Sort of. Serana mentions that while she utterly detests her father now, he wasn't always as much of an asshole.
  • Vampire Monarch: Well, lord, but it still counts.

    Valerica 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/valerica_5581.JPG

Voiced by: Cindy Robinson

Wife of Harkon and mother of Serana, she is the one who sealed Serana away so Harkon would never find her and complete his ritual. She is so obsessed with her hatred for Harkon, she has lost sight of the well-being of her daughter.

  • Abusive Parent: To save her daughter, Valerica sealed her and put her to sleep for gods know how many ages - with no real plan to ever free her.
  • Barrier Maiden: Unwittingly serves as this for Durnehviir, who was tricked by the Ideal Masters to bind himself within the Soul Cairn for "as long as she lives." He was unaware at the time that she was an immortal vampire.
  • Didn't Think This Through: She went to the Soul Cairn and offered to supply the Ideal Masters with the souls they needed. She never expected them to decide her soul would suffice.
    • Averted in the case of her regard to Harkon's plans: Read Pragmatic Villainy below.
    • Also her plan to foil her husband's plan was merely delaying the inevitable - Serana was eventually found and Valerica had no way to control situation.
  • Heroic Willpower: Heavily implied. Valerica doesn't seem to have been fazed much by her centuries-long stint in the Soul Cairn. This is made more impressive when one considers that, unless the Ideal Masters or something local is providing her with sustenance, she has likely not fed in a very long time.
  • He Who Fights Monsters: In her attempts to protect Serana from Harkon, she became as dangerously obsessive as her husband, which is why Serana resents her.
  • Knight Templar Parent: If you side with the Dawnguard, she will rant at you that you want to wipe out every last vampire in existence while she just wants to ensure the safety of her daughter. Serana will immediately pull a Shut Up, Hannibal! on her, telling her that she was never asked when forced into Valerica's plans, and never liked the idea of getting locked away for hundreds of years just to be 'safe', and that what Valerica did makes her Not So Different from Harkon. To her credit, she does listen to her daughter and apologizes for not considering her point of view.
  • Mama Bear: Even with the aforementioned neglect, she does show genuine concern for Serana's safety, especially if she is travelling with a Dawnguard-aligned Dragonborn.
  • Necromancer: An expert, far beyond simply raising zombies - when hiding herself from her husband's madness, she abandoned the mortal plane altogether for the realm where captured black souls are drawn. Few mortal necromancers find it, and fewer still return. She can do both.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Though Valerica isn't as cruel and violent as her husband, her opposing the prophecy isn't altruistic. She believes masking the sun wouldn't result in a twenty-four hour buffet for the vampires, but rather drive all mortals to hunt them down and root them out until the sun was restored. In her opinion, their kind's place is in the shadows, undiscovered.
  • Rape as Backstory: Like her daughter, she too had to offer herself to Molag Bal, with all that entails.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: She sealed Serana in Dimhollow Crypt with no plan to free her, all to prevent Harkon from carrying out his plan. It wasn't the best idea, but it did keep Serana safe and out of Harkon's clutches for centuries, until the one person who could put everything right was born.

    Vingalmo 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/vingalmo_3715.JPG

An Altmer vampire, Vingalmo is a senior member of Clan Volkihar and an adviser to Harkon. He will send the Dragonborn on a quest to turn a resident in three of the hold capitals into a Vampire Lord, sensing they are perfect for being granted the gift of becoming a vampire.

  • Deadpan Snarker: He regularly snarks at his rival's expense.
  • The Dragon: Seems to be competing for the spot with Orthjolf, and very upset at the idea that Harkon might appoint you to the position.
  • Faux Affably Evil: He may act polite and warn you about Orthjolf backstabbing you, but has no hesitation about doing it himself.
  • Hypocrite: Despite warning you of Orthjolf's Chronic Backstabbing Disorder, he'll happily send an assassin to try and kill you so he can take the glory.
  • It's All About Me: According to Orthjolf, though Vingalmo says the same about him.
  • Quest Giver: Occasionally sends you out to turn people into Vampires.
  • The Rival: With Orthjolf. The two are feuding for the position of The Dragon and will go to extremes to try and achieve it, such as sending an assassin each to try and kill you, with the intention of then taking the glory.
  • Snark-to-Snark Combat: On the occasions that Orthjolf can keep up with him verbally, this ensues.
  • Spanner in the Works: During the quest "The Bloodstone Chalice," he sends an assassin to finish you off. This interferes with Orthjolf's efforts to do the same, causing an argument between the two and preventing them from finishing off the Dragonborn.
  • The Starscream: Orthjolf accuses him of trying to overthrow Harkon.
  • Wicked Cultured: There is a book dating to the First Era by an Altmer named Vingalmo, who may be the same person. He also scolds his rival for not being able to banter in a witty manner.

    Orthjolf 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/orthjolf_4836.JPG
Don't get in my way, and I won't tear your arms off. Simple, isn't it?
A Nord vampire, one of the higher up members of the Clan, with a seat next to Harkon.

  • Beard of Evil: Has a beard, and is a murderous vampire.
  • Book Dumb: He derides Vingalmo's bookish ways and doesn't appear to be anywhere near as eloquent, but he can snark back on occasion and clearly is doing something right to be as high in the court as he is.
  • The Brute: While he's competing for the position of The Dragon, Orthjolf seems less eloquent than the others and seemingly prefers to rely on sheer force rather than magic, threatening the Dragonborn with pain and physical retaliation quite often.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He's not as eloquent as Vingalmo, but on occasion is capable of snarking back with blunt and sarcastic put-downs.
  • The Dragon: Seems to be competing with the spot for Vingalmo, and very upset at the idea that Harkon might appoint you to the position.
  • Fantastic Racism: Against Elves. If the player is an elf, he will merely be passive aggressive towards you, but he will only admit hating elves if the player isn't one.
    Orthjolf: (to a non-elf player) Between you and me, there's too many of them; can't trust the lot of them. Never could.
  • It's All About Me: According to Vingalmo, though Orthjolf says the same thing about him.
  • The Rival: With Vingalmo. The two are feuding for the position of The Dragon and will go to extremes to try and achieve it, such as sending an assassin each to try and kill you, with the intention of then taking the glory.
  • Snark-to-Snark Combat: On the occasions that Orthjolf can keep up with Vingalmo verbally, this ensues.
  • Spanner in the Works: During the quest "The Bloodstone Chalice," he sends an assassin to finish you off. This interferes with Vingalmo's efforts to do the same, causing an argument between the two.

    Garan Marethi 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/garan_1107.JPG

A Dunmer vampire who has been a member of the Clan for many centuries. He is the court wizard. He and Fura give out the repeatable radiant quests, along with the one to slay Isran and the rest of the Dawnguard after completing the main Dawnguard DLC questline.

  • Affably Evil: One of the few polite members of the court, who genuinely seems to treat you with respect.
  • The Dragon: To you, after you kill Harkon.
  • Evil Genius: For Clan Volkihar.
  • Evil Redhead: He has bright orange hair, which only makes the contrast with his grey skin more striking.
  • Evil Sorcerer: He's a mage who serves Harkon.
  • Only Sane Man: He no longer has any interest in the Clan's political infighting.
  • Pet the Dog: If you play as a Clan member, he'll be the one to comfort Serana over having to kill her father, instead of Isran.

    Fura Bloodmouth 
"I feed when I'm hungry, I sleep when I'm tired, and I kill whenever I'm in the mood. These are the things important to me."

A Nord vampire that is intensely loyal to Harkon. She and Garan give out the repeatable radiant quests, along with the one to slay Isran and the rest of the Dawnguard after completing the main Dawnguard DLC questline.

    Feran Sadri 
"You'd be surprised what people leave behind when you burn their village to the ground."

A Dunmer vampire who is also the chief alchemist for the Clan. He will send the Dragonborn on quests to retrieve powerful artifacts to augment their Vampire Lord abilities and for the body parts of ancient vampires to amplify the power of the Bloodstone Chalice.

  • False Flag Operation: One of the quests that he gives out involves you framing the Dawnguard for murder by killing someone while dressed in their armour.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Surprisingly polite, but it all sounds superficial.
  • Rape, Pillage, and Burn: He gets some of his supplies from burning down villages and looting what is left.

    Hestla 
"Feast on life, friend."

A Nord vampire and ex-Companion who acts as the blacksmith for the Clan.

  • Affably Evil: After Serana and Ronthil, she is one of the most friendly vampires in Castle Volkihar and she genuinely wants to be helpful and useful, always knowing to have a backup plan with armor and weapons when the regular vampire skills are not enough.

    Ronthil 
"I hope you find life in the castle to be to your liking."

A Bosmer vampire that serves as Feran's assistent and general goods merchant for the Clan.

  • Affably Evil: After Serana and Hestla, he is one of the most friendly vampires in Castle Volkihar and he genuinely wants to be helpful and useful.
  • Butt-Monkey: Ronthil is disrespected by everyone in Castle Volkihar, he doesn't even sleep in his own coffin like other vampires, but in a dark corner, despite there being enough coffins for the whole Clan in the armory.
  • Dirty Coward: When the Dawnguard attack the castle in the final quest of their side of the DLC, Ronthil cowers in the armory while the other vampires stand their ground, but once confronted, uses his leveled bow, arrows, and leveled one-handed weapon he spawned originally with to defend himself in a desperate last stand.
  • New Meat: Its implied he is the most recently turned member of their coven and as such he is treated with disdain by other vampires.
  • Professional Buttkisser: He may come across as one due to his eagerness to make his superiors happy.

    Stalf 

A Nord vampire and background member of the Court who plays a larger role in the quest "The Bloodstone Chalice."

  • Psycho for Hire: When Orthjolf hires him to try and assassinate the Dragonborn after they've finished the hard part of the above-mentioned quest.

    Salonia Caelia 
An Imperial vampire and background member of the Court who plays a larger role in "The Bloodstone Chalice."

  • Psycho for Hire: When Vingalmo hires her to try and assassinate the Dragonborn after they've finished the hard part of the above-mentioned quest.

    Garmr and CuSith 
Harkon's personal Death Hounds that wander around Castle Volkihar.
  • Hell Hound: By virtue of being Death Hounds, who's bite carries frost damage and are always wrapped in a frost cloak when in combat. In Skyrim, a Death Hound's bite is known to be as "cold as the grave".
  • Religious and Mythological Theme Naming: Both are named after hellhounds from mythology: Garmr is the watchdog of Hel in Norse mythology, while CuSith is a ghostly dog with connections to death from Irish mythology. Doubles as Names to Run Away from Really Fast.
  • Talking Animal: Bizarrely enough, the two can send hired thugs after the player if you steal from Castle Volkihar.

Other Dawnguard Characters

    Arch-Curate Vyrthur 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/vyrthur_7274.JPG
"I will herald the fall of eternal night!"

Voiced by: Stephen Russell

The leader of an ancient Chantry of Auri-El, and brother to Gelebor. When the Falmer invaded the Chantry, he was enthralled somehow and taken under their control. Or so his brother thinks...

  • Arc Villain: He is the main antagonist for the quest ‘Touching the Sky’. Normally this wouldn’t grant him Arc Villain status, but given it’s one of the longest quests in the game, centered around one of its biggest locations...
  • Climax Boss: You fight him to claim the MacGuffin around which the main Dawnguard questline centers, and when you confront him, you find out that he's a vampire, that he's the one that created the prophecy in revenge on Auri-El for letting him be turned, and that the Falmer Gelebor thought had enthralled him were actually his minions. The questline's story effectively comes to its head here.
  • Determinator: He heals himself several times in your fight with him, as he's got nothing to lose.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: The point of the prophecy; of course he can't physically harm Auri-El, but he can disrupt his influence over the world.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Auri-El didn't intervene to save him when a vampire turned him. Vyrthur responded by taking command of the Falmer in the valley, letting them invade the Chantry of Auri-El and massacre all the Snow Elves there save for his brother, and made plans to use Auriel's Bow to bring about The Night That Never Ends so that vampires can run amok over the world. Safe to say, somewhere along the way he overreacted a bit.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: He ordered the murder of nearly 100 unarmed worshippers, but he let his brother flee and has never gone after him.
  • Evil Sounds Raspy: His voice has a slight Palpatine-esque air to it.
  • Expy:
    • He's the spitting image of Kain, and has more than a few character traits in common with him too.
    • He also physically resembles the Uber-Morlock from The Time Machine (2002) and plays a similar role with the Falmer that were also based on The Morlocks.
  • Faith–Heel Turn: When he was turned into a vampire, he became enraged that Auri-El didn't intervene. He created the prophecy as vengeance against him.
  • God Is Displeased: There are some subtle indications that Auri-El was well aware of Vyrthur's true nature and knew Vyrthur would betray him, and didn't protect Vyrthur from becoming a vampire because of it.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: A major tip-off to his true identity.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Played with; while the actions he plans to take don't make him any more of a threat than Harkon, the reasons he undertakes those plans do. Harkon just wants to create an endless night so vampires can roam free, while Vyrthur wants to do it to disrupt a god's influence on the world.
  • An Ice Person: Uses ice magic, wields a frost-enchanted elven dagger, and summons Frost Atronachs.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Unlike Harkon, he's not completely unsympathetic. It's hard to blame him for being upset that the god he served so devotedly did nothing to save him from becoming a vampire. That said, his reaction is way over the top.
  • Last of His Kind: He's one of the only two known surviving Snow Elves, which is what the Falmer were before they were subjugated by the Dwemer.
  • Light Is Not Good: He has pale skin, white hair, pale white armor, and is an antagonist.
  • MacGuffin Delivery Service: Thanks you for bringing Serana to him, because that just happens to be the last part of the prophecy.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: If the boss fight goes on long enough, when he reaches his last bits of Health during his boss fight, he starts to pray for forgiveness from Auri-El.
  • Orcus on His Throne: He's apparently been content to wait centuries for a pureblood vampire to find him so he can fulfill his own prophecy. Slightly justified, since pureblood vampires are very rare. Vyrthur spreading word of the prophecy through the years was probably his way to catch the ear of any who might be out there and get them to come to him, since he has Auriel's Bow, the other part of the prophecy.
  • Reclining Reigner: You find him in the chapel slouching on a throne, from which he commands frozen Falmer to attack you.
  • Sequential Boss: The first phase of his fight has him sending a horde of frozen Falmer and Chaurus at you, while occasionally bringing down chunks of the roof. After they go down, he fights you personally.
  • Time Abyss: Even more so than the Volkihar vampires, as he dates from before the fall of the Falmer at Ysgramor's hand and their taking refuge with the Dwemer, which happened in the Merethic era.
  • Walking Spoiler: Just about everything about his character is a huge spoiler for the events of Dawnguard. Namely that he's a vampire and he's the one that created the prophecy of the Tyranny of the Sun, and everything you've done to find Auriel's Bow was playing right into his hands to fulfill that prophecy.
  • Weaksauce Weakness:
    • His boss fight becomes a lot less dramatic if you've completed the Companions' questline and are wielding Wuuthrad, since it does extra damage to elves.
    • He begins the fight standing with his back to a balcony. In order to get one of the Elder Scrolls required for the Dawnguard quest line, you've probably tackled the vanilla main story as well, which means you probably have Unrelenting Force up your sleeve. Do the math.
  • Wham Line: Delivers a pretty huge one to Serana.
    Vyrthur: Look into my eyes, Serana. You tell me what I am.
  • White Hair, Black Heart: He's a Snow Elf, white haired, and pretty evil.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: His whole reason for creating the Prophecy was to spite Auri-El for not intervening to protect him when he was turned into a Vampire. For that reason, he's ready to plunge the entire world into permanent darkness.

    Dexion Evicus 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/dexion_1782.JPG

A Moth Priest who is visiting Skyrim so he can try and find the remaining Elder Scrolls.

  • Beat the Curse Out of Him: If you side with the Dawnguard, you free him from being enthralled by vampires by going to town with your weapon of choice.
  • Blind Seer: He's rendered blind after reading the first Elder Scroll you bring him.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: You can snap him out of it, though, and if you side with the Volkihar Clan, you can then enthrall him again for yourself.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: He carries a unique katana called the Akaviri Sword on him at all times. The only way to get one in the entire game is to pickpocket it from him.
  • Kidnapped Scientist: Gets kidnapped by a minor vampire faction merely to become enthralled, and if you're a Volkihar vampire, you're basically kidnapping him as well.
  • Kill It with Fire: He uses fire spells to complement his Akaviri Sword.
  • The Renfield: Becomes one in the Volkihar storyline.

    Durnehviir 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/durnehviir_3528.JPG

A dragon encountered in the Soul Cairn. Durnehviir was tricked by the Ideal Masters into guarding their realm.

  • Awesome Mc Coolname: His name translates into "Curse Never Dying".
  • Bodyguarding a Badass: He essentially does this for you when you summon him. Unlike Odahviing, who only aids you during combat and leaves as soon as combat ends, Durnehviir patrols the sky above for the duration of his summon time even when not in combat. Makes sense, since he's relishing the chance to fly in Nirn's skies for as long as he can before being sucked back into the Soul Cairn.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Let's just say that he has a Meaningful Name.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: He's a very Graceful Loser despite having just been defeated for the first time in his entire life. After politely introducing himself, he admits his respect for the Dragonborn's strength as a warrior and teaches them his name so they might call upon him in battle.
  • Deal with the Devil: He made a deal with the Ideal Masters for power and the secrets of Necromancy, only to be tricked into binding himself to the Soul Cairn for as long as Valerica lived, unaware at the time that she was an immortal vampire.
  • Departure Means Death: He's reluctant to leave the Soul Cairn and return to Tamriel, fearing that his body has become so attuned to life in the Soul Cairn that attempting to leave would kill him. He can, however, survive being summoned to Tamriel for short periods of time, and is very happy to visit its skies again.
  • Developers' Foresight: Durnehviir's acknowledgement of you being a Dragonborn is based on how far you are in the main quest. It has three different stages - before absorbing your first Dragon Soul, he will refer to you as a fellow dovah but doesn't know why (see Hyper-Awareness below). If you have already finished your training with the Greybeards, he will acknowledge you being a Dragonborn and so you are dragon in spirit. If you have finished the main quest, he humors you in that the news of Nirn travels there and compliments the player for defeating Alduin.
  • Dracolich: He's trapped between life and death due to spending too much time in the Soul Cairn. He looks the part, with green "flesh rot", exposed ribs, and ratty looking wings.
  • Graceful Loser: He takes his very first defeat in battle remarkably well.
  • Hyper-Awareness: Demonstrates this if the Dragonborn encounters him before "Dragon Rising" is completed, as he refers to them as a fellow Dov; but when questioned about it, he admits he's also confused about why he did so.
  • An Ice Person: Frost Breath is his main direct damage weapon.
  • Necromancer: He sought to raise undead armies to combat his rivals in Tamriel, and made a deal with the Ideal Masters to serve as a Keeper in the Soul Cairn until Valerica died in exchange for their knowledge. Unfortunately for him, they failed to let him know that Valerica is immortal. When he is summoned, he can summon the denizens of the Soul Cairn to aid you. He also teaches a powerful Shout that kills, Soul Traps and raises foes as zombies.
  • Poirot Speak: Averted. He actually speaks the mortal tongue very fluently, and apart from bestowing the title of "Qahnaarin" on the Dragonborn, he almost never speaks in the dragon language. In fact, he may be worse in Dovahzul than in Tamriellic, since he never uses the proper plural for "dovah".
  • Resurrective Immortality: Due to both his time in the Soul Cairn and his deal with the Ideal Masters remaining unfulfilled as long as Valerica still lives, he can't be killed, even by other dragons or the Dragonborn. If he dies, he simply regenerates in the Soul Cairn. When you first beat him, he's back on his feet within minutes.
  • Secret Art: DIIL QOTH ZAAM, the Shout he uses to summon minions from the Soul Cairn.
  • Signature Move: He teaches the Soul Tear shout to the Dragonborn, though he doesn't use it in battle himself; it wouldn't work on the Dragonborn anyway (dragon souls are immune to Soul Trap, which is one of its components), and would be way overpowered if he could use it on anyone else, such as enemies or the player's followers.
  • Summon Bigger Fish: He can be summoned back in Tamriel by shouting his name, like Odahviing, but the mechanics of his summoning are different. Durnehviir is treated as a summon in the same vein as an atronach or zombie, including the requirement that there be enough empty space on the ground for him to materialize. This, incidentally, means he can be summoned indoors if there is enough room for him.
  • Worthy Opponent: The Dragonborn is the first one to ever best him in battle, so he grants them the title of "Qahnaarin", which means "Vanquisher". If you have beaten the main quest of the core game prior to meeting Durnehviir, his first words will be to congratulate you on slaying Alduin.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: He would love to return to Tamriel and fly free in the skies again, but knows that he has spent too long in the Soul Cairn and would die if he stayed in the mortal realm.
  • Your Soul Is Mine: The first three times he is called into Tamriel, he teaches you the words to the Soul Tear shout, which is useless without all three words, but then becomes a powerful magic bolt that instantly kills, Soul Traps, and resurrects any enemy with low enough health.

    Galathil 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/galathil_8318.JPG

Voiced by: Julianne Buescher

A Bosmer woman added to the Ragged Flagon in the Dawnguard expansion. She's known as the "Face Sculptor" and can change the Dragonborn's appearance (but not race or gender) for 1000 septims.

  • How the Mighty Have Fallen: This is what she thinks of her current situation:
    "I have not always been a ragged beggar. I learned my art from the masters of the art of flesh sculpture. I studied with the Faculty of Chirurgeons in Cloudrest. I walked with the Hollow-Faced Men of Nohotogrha for three years. I count the nobility of both the Empire and the Dominion among my clients. And yet, I have fallen so low that I must justify myself to a wanderer in the sewers of this backwater of the world."
  • Insufferable Genius: She is an eloquent, refined, world-famous master of a rare craft which combines artistry and surgery. She is also haughty and condescending, like many Altmer, and despite falling on hard times will rudely question if the Dragonborn can even afford her now discounted services.
  • Magic Plastic Surgery: The whole point of her ability; as long as you aren't a vampire, she can completely change the Dragonborn's appearance with no apparent side effects whatsoever.
  • Riches to Rags: Used to be well known throughout the Empire and the Aldmeri Dominion for her face sculpting, but admits that she has fallen on hard times, to the point of moving her business to the Ragged Flagon.
  • Starving Artist: She is an absolute expert in reconstructive surgery, able to change your facial features, bone structure, skin tone, hair texture and color and even your physique, but for some reason she is forced to offer her services in the seediest bar of the shadiest city in Skyrim.
  • Story and Gameplay Segregation: Some of the guards' dialogue imply her skills actually do have unwanted side effects, but this never happens in the game.

    Jiub 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/jiub_4753.JPG

Voiced by: Jeff Baker

Yes, that Jiub. You encounter him as a soul in the Soul Cairn, completely unaware that he has died until he's told by the Dovahkiin. He has finished writing his Opus, but lost all the pages and requests the Dovahkiin's help in finding them.

  • The Atoner: The reason he hunted down all the Cliff Racers.
  • Continuity Nod: His appearance is one, and in a bit of a retcon, his death was not in Morrowind (as implied by the rumors in Oblivion), but in Kvatch, during its destruction at the start of Oblivion.
  • The Determinator: He hunted down every single Cliff Racer in Morrowind by himself.
  • Fate Worse than Death: But he shrugs it off, saying that he likes the quiet.
  • Guttural Growler: As part of the Continuity Nod, Jeff Baker is brought back to provide his original Dunmer voice from Morrowind.
  • Heel–Face Turn: He finally reveals the reason he was on the prisoner boat in Morrowind. He was once a skooma addict who hated himself for killing people just to get his fix. After he was released from prison, he decided to turn his life around by killing all the Cliff Racers.
  • Pals with Jesus: Pretty much what happened to him after killing all those Cliff Racers and becoming St. Jiub.

    Katria 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/katria_9861.JPG

Voiced by: Lani Minella

Once an adventurer seeking the Aetherium Forge, she has died in the ruins of Arkngthamz. Her spirit remains there, however, seeking someone to help finish the quest she has failed to do during her life.

  • Ace Custom: Her bow, Zephyr, is a Dwemer bow tricked out to have a quicker arrow draw.
  • Action Girl: Even as a ghost, she's more than capable of going toe-to-toe with the Falmer, Chauri, and Dwemer robots.
  • Adventure Archaeologist: In life, she explored Dwemer ruins in search of the Aetherium Forge. Even after her death, her spirit works with the Dragonborn in order to finish what she started.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She has her moments. "Killing" her will result in her reappearing a few seconds later, asking if it made you feel any better.
  • Disney Villain Death: The reason she's a ghost.
  • Ghostly Goals: Finding the Aetherium Forge.
  • Go into the Light: Implied at the very end of the quest. However, if "Lost to the Ages" is completed before the main quest chain, she cannot be encountered in Sovngarde, despite the fact that she's a Nord.
  • Goddamned Bats: In-universe, Katria considers the Falmer to be this.
    "Damn things are like flies. No matter how many you kill..."
  • Memento MacGuffin: If you retrieve her bow Zephyr from where it landed on a fallen tree, she asks you to take good care of it for her.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: Still capable of physical form and kicking butt alongside you. Unlike other ghosts, you can't walk through her, and she utters a noise of disgust if you push past her.
  • Unfinished Business: Returns as a ghost to help you find the Aetherium Forge. You have the option of tracking down the apprentice who betrayed her and finishing off that person as well. (Said apprentice is a random encounter; she does not request this of the Dragonborn.)
  • What the Hell, Hero?: If you loot the armor off her corpse, she'll lament her lost dignity.

    Knight-Paladin Gelebor 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/gelebor_3265.JPG

Voiced by: David Shaughnessy

A Snow Elf, likely one of the last of his kind. He asks the Dovahkiin to kill his brother, fearing he has been irreversibly enthralled by the Falmer - or, as he calls them, The Betrayed.

  • Badass Pacifist: He dislikes fighting, but will do whatever it takes to continue fulfilling his oath to Auri-El and defending the Wayshrines.
  • Bittersweet Ending: By the end of his quest, his brother is dead, and he's the last known Snow Elf. Nevertheless, learning that the Falmer didn't instigate the massacre of the Chantry gives him hope that the Falmer's recent rise in intelligence will one day lead them back to civilization.
  • The Idealist: Even though he's the last known uncorrupted Snow Elf left on the face of Tamriel, he's not at all morose about the situation of himself and his race, believing that there may remain other isolated pockets of Snow Elves and that the Falmer may one day recall what they once were and make peace with the surface world.
  • Insistent Terminology: He prefers being called a Snow Elf over Falmer (even though "Falmer" actually means "Snow Folk" in Elvish), since the word Falmer has gained such a negative connotation.
  • Last of His Kind: Well, he's one of the last known Snow Elves who has not become a sightless, feral monster as the Falmer have. After his brother dies, he acknowledges that he may now indeed be the very last, but reassures the Dovahkiin that they did not further a genocide - there may be others like him, and the Falmer may one day regain their sentience.
  • Light 'em Up: As a priest of Auri-El, his magical powers are based around light.
  • Magic Knight: He uses magic along with an elven mace.
  • My Species Doth Protest Too Much: Double subverted. He claims that the Snow Elves weren't as the Nords portrayed them before they became the Betrayed, but also makes it very clear that he doesn't want to be grouped with the present-day Falmer, since even though the name technically applies to him, the modern connotation is entirely different.
  • Nice Guy: Despite being one of the last members of his race, he doesn't let that stop him from being polite and amicable.
  • Nigh Invulnerable: Unkillable NPCs are all over the place in this game, but Gelebor takes it a step further: he can't be attacked at all. Anything you try to hit him with just passes through him completely.
  • Right for the Wrong Reasons: Seeing Vyrthur looking disturbingly calm after the Falmer massacred the rest of the Chantry led Gelebor to believe that Vyrthur was corrupted by them, so he asks the Dragonborn and Serana to help put his brother down, believing that it's the only way to deal with him. He's only half-right; Vyrthur was indeed corrupted, but not by the Falmer, who actually committed the massacre under his command.
  • The Paladin: Well, it is his title. Carries over to the armor that he and Vyrthur share, which is white.
  • Time Abyss: Like Vyrthur. Unlike him, though, no reasons are given for his seeming agelessnessnote . Gelebor is arguably the oldest still-living, non-undead mortal encountered in The Elder Scrolls. The fact that he can be neither attacked nor pickpocketed implies that Auri-El might be keeping him alive and protecting him.

    Arvak 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/arvak_2295.JPG

A horse who got stuck in the Soul Cairn along with his owner. He can be seen appearing and disappearing across the Cairn, and Mistmen are using his skull for some ritual. Arvak's owner wants him rescued and will teach the Dragonborn to summon Arvak, so that the loyal steed gets to run in Nirn once more.

  • And Your Little Dog, Too!: The people who killed his owner not only soul trapped him, but Arvak, also.
  • Cool Horse: He's not as tough as Shadowmere, the other Cool Horse, but he has the advantage of a low-cost summoning spell which lets you summon him anywhere that would be valid for a normal horse. This gets around the problem of your horses waiting for you at the wrong entrance to a building or flat-out wandering off if you just took one. Plus, it doesn't matter if you ride him off a cliff or something; you can respawn him instantly, instead of having to wait 10 days for Shadowmere. He also uses a loophole to get around the timeout problem for normal summons; as long as you're riding him, the last five seconds loop endlessly until you dismount.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: He may be the skeletal soul of a horse wreathed in dark flame, but he's an obedient mount and quite harmless.
  • Dem Bones: With a purple tint.
  • Flaming Hair: Tail and mane, though the tail is pretty short.
  • Guide Dang It!: His skull does not have a quest marker. Have fun combing the Soul Cairn or consulting a guide.
  • Hellish Horse: A flaming, skeletal horse.
  • Loyal Animal Companion: According to his owner. "Such a good horse!"
  • Non-Human Undead: A zombie horse.

    The Reaper 
A secret and completely optional boss found in the Soul Cairn, who looks like a ghostly executioner.

  • An Axe to Grind: He looks like a headsman and wield an iron battleaxe to fight.
  • Bonus Boss: Summoning him requires to loot Reaper Gem Fragments beneath the floating crystals in the Soul Cairn's sky (something nothing orders you to do), then find the Reaper Temple (a building no quest directs to, in the middle of an area without any global map) and put the fragments on the altar. Beating him grants three empty black gems, a Daedra heart, and an iron battleaxe (i.e. four rare and precious item, as well as a Vendor Trash weapon, but nothing unique.)
  • Flunky Boss: Summons Bonemen during the fight.
  • The Grim Reaper: He doesn't look like classical representations of the entity, but the name is evocative. Also, making him looks like an executioner makes sense for a Death allegory. He also resides in a plane related to souls and death.
  • Guide Dang It!: As explained under Bonus Boss, finding him requires either huge luck, meticulous exploration of the Soul Cairn, or looking to an online guide.
  • Humanoid Abomination: He looks like the ghost of a man, but his nature is never explained. He may be a Daedric entity; he drops a Daedra heart when killed.
  • The Spook: There's no explicit explanation to his presence or his role in the Soul Cairn. Souls wandering in the Cairn have a line which may be a reference to him ("Shh, he's watching us!"), but that's ambiguous and could just as easily be referring to Durnehviir or an Ideal Master.
  • Zombie Puke Attack: One of his attacks consists in spitting some green acid toward the Dragonborn.

Hearthfire

    Gregor 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/gregor_2796.JPG

Voiced by: Michael Gough

Housecarl to the Dragonborn upon being named Thane of the Pale after ending Dawnstar's endless nightmares.

  • Badass Beard: One does not get to be a housecarl in Skyrim without being badass, and he's got the beard to go with it.
  • Bald of Awesome: Only the lower half of his head has any hair on it.
  • BFS: He's the only housecarl whose default weapon is a greatsword.

    Rayya 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rayya_9200.JPG

Voiced by: Claudia Christian

Housecarl to the Dragonborn upon being named Thane of Falkreath after wiping out bandits in Falkreath.

  • Action Girl: By profession.
  • Bald Women: Removing her turban shows her head is shaved.
  • Dual Wielding: If she is not a follower at the moment, she usually uses two weapons to defend herself. She'll continue to use her dual scimitars while in the player's service, unless you give her a more powerful weapon.
  • Token Minority: She's a Redguard, making her the only housecarl available to the player who isn't a Nord note .
  • Tribal Face Paint: Wears dark green facepaint around her eyes.

    Valdimar 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/valdimar_3929.JPG

Voiced by: Michael Gough

Housecarl to the Dragonborn upon being named Thane of Hjaalmarch after saving Morthal from a vampire conspiracy.

  • Badass Mustache: Sports a handlebar mustache.
  • Bald of Awesome: Much like Gregor, above, to whom he bears strong physical resemblance.
  • Barrier Warrior: His defensive spells are Oakflesh, Stoneflesh, and Lesser Ward.
  • Carry a Big Stick: His starting weapon is a mace.
  • Healing Hands: Close Wounds heals the Dragonborn; Healing heals him.
  • An Ice Person: The only Destruction spell he knows is Ice Spike.
  • Magic Knight: Valdimar is the only spellcaster among the housecarls. He carries a mace, and knows spells from the schools of Alteration, Destruction, and Restoration.
  • My Species Doth Protest Too Much: Nords typically fear magic somewhat.
  • Turn Undead: One of his spells.
  • Walking the Earth: A minor example. If he's not your active follower, you can watch him patrol the borders of your Morthal holdings. He occasionally has to deal with draugr who wander out of the swamp waters.

    Adoptable Orphans 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/skyrim_orphans_6466.jpg

While Hearthfire allows the player to adopt children, not all of them are orphanage kids...

  • Cool Pet: They can bring home wild animals such as foxes and mudcrabs and will ask if they can keep them. Alternatively, if you bring home Meeko, Vigilance, Bran, or Sceolang, they may ask to keep your "doggy."
  • Innocent Flower Girl: Unless she gets adopted by the Dragonborn, Sofie is stuck selling cheap, common flowers to buy food near the front gates of Windhelm. At least if the player decides not to give her a home, they can still help her out by buying flowers.
  • Interspecies Adoption: If the player isn't human and adopts them.
  • Orphan's Ordeal: Each of them has a tragic backstory.
    • Lucia's parents died, her aunt and uncle took over everything they owned, and then they kicked her out because she was "worthless."
    • Sofie's mother died when she was young, and her father was a Stormcloak who went off to war and never came back.
    • Blaise's parents were in the Legion and died in an ambush. He's only surviving by working on a farm that he hates.
    • Alesan's father was a sailor, and when he got sick the crew dropped the pair off at Dawnstar and left without them. His father died a few days later. He only ekes out a living by working in a mine.
  • Happily Adopted: If you adopt them.
  • Heartwarming Orphan: They are intended to be sympathetic and lovable, especially compared to the kids in the vanilla game.
  • Morality Pet: Lucia is apparently one for a surly, drunken hobo in Whiterun, who is the only person besides the player to be nice to her.
  • Street Urchin: A couple of them.
    • Lucia is one of Skyrim's many beggars, but the only one that's a child.
    • Sofie tries to sell flowers while wandering the snowy streets of Wildhelm.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: The whole reason they exist in the game in the first place.

    Rochelle the Red 

A Redguard woman who makes the fatal mistake of kidnapping the Dragonborn's spouse and demanding a ransom, prompting the Dragonborn to go out on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge.

  • Oh, Crap!: You can reply to her ransom request by telling her to get lost before you bash her head in. If you pass the intimidation check (which, due to a bug, isn't actually labeled as such) she'll realize exactly how badly she's messed up and immediately agrees to let your spouse go, claiming that she had no idea whose wife/husband they'd kidnapped.
  • Recurring Boss: An extremely minor example, but Rochelle's quest is repeatable. However, it only repeats once every 50,000 hours - slightly less than six in-game years - so it's unlikely that you'll actually see it more than once.
  • Scary Black Woman: As a Redguard woman, she tries to invoke this. Key word being tries.
  • Skippable Boss: Of a sort. Depending on who your spouse is, she may never make an appearance; for various reasons, some of the spouses cannot be kidnapped, in which case you won't see her. She'll never appear if your spouse isn't in one of the homestead houses. And of course, you'll never see her if your Dragonborn doesn't get married.
  • Smug Snake: The rest of the tropes should make this pretty obvious.
  • Suicidal Overconfidence: You've probably gathered by now that her plan is basically "Let's piss off this badass adventurer off by kidnapping their (potentially equally badass) spouse!"
  • Too Dumb to Live: A word of advice? It's probably best for your health and that of those around you to not piss off the local One-Man Army. Especially if their spouse is also a grade-A badass to begin with.

Dragonborn

The Skaal

The Skaal are a racial and cultural subset of Nords who worship the "All-Maker" (who has more than a passing similarity to Akatosh/Auri-el/etc) and have a deep spiritual connection with nature. They are the original culture to inhabit Solstheim.

    Frea 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/frea_3701.png

Voiced by: Elle Newlands

The daughter and apprentice of the Skaal shaman Storn. She was sent to investigate what dark powers was brainwashing the Skaal and the other inhabitants of Solstheim. She joins the Dragonborn as a companion on some quests.

  • Action Girl: She's quite formidable in combat, as seen when she joins the Dragonborn in infiltrating Miraak's temple.
  • Affectionate Nickname: She dubs the Dragonborn "Skaal friend" at the end of the DLC's main quest.
  • An Axe to Grind: Her default melee weapons are a pair of war axes and she has perks to cause bleeding damage from her axe strikes, but, with her default weapons, a bug causes it to be ineffective.
  • Badass Preacher: She'll take over as shaman of the Skaal once her father is killed by Hermaeus Mora and she kicks plenty of ass, having no level cap.
  • Deadpan Snarker: She's shown to be able to snark quite well if brought along during "The Path of Knowledge," where she must listen to Neloth's comments.
    (after Neloth says he will remain behind) "Finally. We will not have to listen to his complaining."
  • Dual Wielding: She can wield two weapons at once and has perks to make her hit 35% faster with her weapons.
  • Guide Dang It!: There's no indication given to bring her along during "The Path of Knowledge;" but if you do, she will talk frequently with Neloth and comment on his plans.
  • Made of Iron: She has no level cap, so she will level with you no matter how powerful you are; and she's permanently essential, so she cannot be killed and has more HP than any other follower, including the uncapped followers. Taken together, these facts make her easily the most powerful melee follower.
  • Magic Knight: While Destruction magic isn't exactly her cup of tea, the first thing she does during any given fight will likely be to pop an armor spell on herself. She'll also use healing spells if things are going badly.
  • Taking Up the Mantle: She takes over the role of Shaman to the Skaal after Storn's death.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: After you defeat Miraak, she will give you a piece of advice of this kind, saying that you do not need to follow the same path as him and become Mora's champion:
    "The All-Maker made you Dragonborn for a higher purpose. Do not forget that."

    Storn Crag-Strider 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/storn_crag-strider_5938.png

Voiced by: George Coe

The shaman of the Skaal. Storn was the first to figure out that the dark power taking over the minds of the inhabitants of Solsteim was Miraak. He sent his daughter Frea to investigate, and when she returned with the Dragonborn, he decided to guide the Dragonborn to defeat Miraak, hoping that the Dragonborn's powers would make them a match for Miraak's.

  • "Awesome McCool" Name: Storn Crag-Strider.
  • Badass Baritone: His voice is deep and rough, but with a grandfatherly air about it.
  • Badass Beard: As is common for Nords and Skaal.
  • Badass Grandpa: Even though Storn seems to be in the elder days of his life, the barrier he creates around the Skaal village, which wards away Miraak's influence from controlling the remaining tribesmen, speaks volumes of his power. In fact, he stays there kneeling, maintaining the barrier unceasingly, until you make progress in the Dragonborn quest. And resisting Hermaeus Mora's attempts to steal the secrets of the Skaal from him to his last breath, while also decrying the Daedric Prince as a liar, speaks the same about his courage.
  • Barrier Warrior: He maintains a shield around the Skaal village to prevent Miraak from mind controlling any more villagers.
  • Cool Old Guy: A friendly man that cares for his people.
  • Defiant to the End: Even though he willingly offers up his people's hidden knowledge to Hermaeus Mora, he resists the extraction of said knowledge to his last breath.
  • Good Parents: His daughter Frea clearly loves and respects him deeply.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: He surrenders the knowledge that Hermaeus Mora had sought for so long, dying in the process, so that the Dragonborn can learn the final word of the Bend Will shout and use it to defeat Miraak.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: By Hermaeus Mora, including a tentacle through the head.
  • Mr. Exposition: Explains a good chunk of the lore to the Dragonborn.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: He sees the bigger picture and knows that giving in to Hermaeus Mora and surrendering his tribe's secrets is worth it to end the threat that Miraak poses to all of Solstheim.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: His tribe has a prophecy of eventually losing their secrets to Hermaeus Mora. Storn decides that it's worth the risk to have it occur now if it ultimately saves the island.

    Baldor Iron-Shaper 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/baldor_3434.png

Voiced by: Thor Edgell

The village blacksmith. In this role, he is the keeper of the secrets of smithing Stalhrim, an enchanted ice that can be shaped into weapons and armor that can rival Ebonynote  in quality.

  • Distressed Dude: Gets bagged by Thalmor agents out to acquire the secrets to Stalhrim smithing.
  • Married to the Job: Almost literally, in his mind. "I have a secret wife... her name is Forge."
  • Oblivious to Love: Morwen has all but spelled it out that she wants to have his babies.

    Morwen 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/morwen_914.png

A former soldier and mercenary from Skyrim, who later came to Solstheim and joined the Skaal.

  • Dogged Nice Guy: Implied to have feelings for Baldor. Too bad he can't notice the hints. Subverted if she becomes a potential spouse for the Dragonborn.
  • The Dutiful Daughter: She wants to honor a Skaal funerary tradition for her mother, who is buried in Falkreath, and asks the Dragonborn to deliver a necklace to the town's priest of Arkay.
  • Going Native: Her mother was a Skaal who gave in to her wanderlust and left the tribe. Morwen chose to return to her ancestral people.
  • Retired Badass: Former Skyrim-based mercenary who later chose to settle down.

    Fanari Strong-Voice 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/fanari_5879.png

Voiced by: Martina Lotune

The Chief of the Skaal Village and one of the many in Solstheim who has fallen under Miraak's thrall.

    Wulf Wild-Blood 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/wulf_37.png

First Hunter of the Skaal village. The most capable living warrior in the Skaal tribe.

  • "Awesome McCool" Name: Wulf Wild-Blood is a cool name.
  • Badass Beard: He has a great beard to fit with the hunter motif.
  • Martial Pacifist: The Nords of Solstheim are in general somewhat less war-like than their cousins in Skyrim. Wulf thus abides by Skaal traditions only to hunt animals in order to survive, allowing them to otherwise live their lives as they will, so long as they do not harm him or his tribe. Of course, when pushed, he is a skilled fighter.
    "The first piece of wisdom I offer to any hunter of the Skaal is to ask this simple question: "Should I truly kill this beast?""

    Tharstan 

Voiced by: George Coe

Not an official member of the Skaal, Tharstan is a visiting scholar who is chronicling Solstheim, and the Skaal culture in particular. Fanari has given him lodging as a guest in her own home.

  • Adorkable: A fair bit older than most examples, but qualifies due to his genuine enthusiasm in his work and almost childish excitement while exploring Vahlok's tomb.
  • Due to the Dead: He opts to not include the horrific death that Storn suffers at the hands of Hermaeus Mora in his chronicles.
  • Gentleman and a Scholar: He's extremely well-mannered, greatly admires your heroism in rescuing the blacksmith, and loves to research and study.
  • Honorary True Companion: To the Skaal. He can't become one, of course; but the village residents are quite fond of him, and vice versa, to the point where he seems to have decided to live out the rest of his life with them.
  • Non-Action Guy: When you take him into the Tomb of Vahlok, you are hired by him specifically to beat down the draugr inside, since he's just a scholar and an old man as well, and he understandably bolts off when the hair flies.
    • Made of Iron: Happily, he's flagged as essential at least until the end of this quest, so you don't have to worry too much about actually protecting him.

Raven Rock

The colony of Raven Rock was originally an Imperial mining colony, but was given to the Dark Elves after the Red Year. After its ebony mine closed up, the colony has hit on hard times. Its most prominent structure is the Bulwark, a giant wall meant primarily to hold back the constantly encroaching ash storms from Red Mountain that was added after the Dark Elves took over the colony.

    Lleril Morvayn 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/llerilmorvayndb_6823.png

The first Redoran councilor of Raven Rock, and de jure ruler of Solstheim, although he admits that his actual power is limited to the town. He's the son of Brara Morvayn of Morrowind, one of the Redoran Councilors. According to History of Raven Rock, Brara Morvayn led a small group of House Redoran Dunmer to Raven Rock and eventually became councilor of Raven Rock and sole ruler of Solstheim. She died of old age in 4E 65 and was succeeded by her son Lleril, who took over after serving in the Redoran armies with his friend Adril Arano, who followed him and became his second councilor.

  • Blue Blood: He comes from a whole family of Redoran nobles.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Adril Arano, though it's implied they were already friends before they served together.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure:
    • When Crescius Caerellius fell into a depression after the mine closed, Councilor Morvayn initially allowed him to stay at his home and work out his problem. Crescius's depression worsened and he locked himself in, refusing food for so many days that his life was at risk; Councilor Morvayn then ordered the Redoran Guard to break down the door to Crescius's home so that a priestess of the Tribunal Temple could enter and administer healing magic and make sure he did not die. Incidentally, the priestess helped Crescius out of his depression and they eventually got married. So good going, Councilor.
    • Even after executing members of House Hlaalu (who are considered traitorous by the general Dunmer population), he had the town lay their remains to rest honorably as per Dunmer tradition in their family tomb. Prior to this, he allowed the traitor's father to build a family tomb despite being Hlaalu because the man had helped Raven Rock immensely.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Well, first councilors, but the principles still apply. He's a hardworking guy who has the best interests of the town at heart. Prior to the mine reopening, dialogue between him and Adril indicates that he's bolstering the town's sagging economy with his own personal fortune.

    Adril Arano 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/adril_7932.png

The second Redoran councilor of Raven Rock, in charge of security and the safety of the First councilor, who is his best friend.

  • Defrosting Ice King: He treats you with nothing but suspicion when you first set foot in Raven Rock, but as you help the town out, he becomes much nicer; once you've gotten Raven Rock back on its feet, he has nothing but nice things to say to you.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Lleril Morvayn.
  • The Good Chancellor: He's got no other ambitions than serving Raven Rock and his best friend.
  • Properly Paranoid: He's considered paranoid. He questions any new arrival in town regarding their motives, and thinks there are House Hlaalu assassins in town looking to kill the first councilor. He's absolutely right.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: He's Properly Paranoid, yet shows restraint and doesn't act on his suspicions until he has undeniable proof. He laments Redoran guards dying in the line of duty, even if it was to protect House Redoran interests.
  • Undying Loyalty: To Lleril Morvayn, even turning down better prospects to continue serving his best friend.

    Captain Modyn Veleth 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/captain_veleth_9414.png

The head of the Redoran Guard in Raven Rock. He tasks the Dragonborn with finding out the source of recent Ash Spawn attacks on the town. Inexplicably Lancastrian.

  • Badass Beard: He's the head of the Guard and has a very cool mustache.
  • Badass in Distress: You'll first encounter him being attacked by Ash Spawn outside Raven Rock. He's essential, so there's no chance of him being killed if you don't intervene, but he won't overcome the Ash Spawn by himself either.
  • The Captain: Head of the Redoran Guard contingent in Raven Rock.
  • Helmets Are Hardly Heroic: He's distinguishable from the other members of the Redoran Guard by the fact that he's the only one who doesn't wear a helmet.
  • Last-Name Basis: Labelled as simply "Captain Veleth" in the game itself. His first name is revealed by his own dialogue.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: He has limited means, but chatter shows he listens to the residents' concerns and does what he can to respond to them with his stretched resources. He also keeps an eye on his men's well-being and asks the Dragonborn to interfere when some of them show a tendency to abuse a potent alcohol.
  • Secret Relationship: With Dreyla Alor, the daughter of Fethis Alor. Her father doesn't exactly approve, forcing them to keep it secret.

    Glover Mallory 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/256px-glover_mallory_4237.png

Voiced by: Popeye Vogelsang

The local smith and brother to Thieves' Guild member Delvin Mallory. He tasks you with retrieving his ancient Nord pickaxe, the only tool capable of mining Stalhrim, which he lent to someone back in town. He may also send you to track down a thief that stole his formula for advanced bonemold armor.


  • The Blacksmith: His job for Raven Rock, as he keeps repairing the armour and weaponry for the guards.
  • Irony: When you get back his Ancient Nord Pickaxe, Glover allows you to keep it, saying that he simply wanted to send the other party the message that it's not right to steal. This is coming from an ex-Thieves' Guild member, who's heavily implied to have stolen the pickaxe from the Skaal village in the first place.
  • Nice Guy: Despite being a former Thieves' Guild member and having abandoned his daughter, he is a genuinely nice person who displays concern for Raven Rock's misery and encourages you to help the city.
  • Parental Abandonment: He abandoned his daughter, Sapphire. He admits that he was a coward for doing so, and feels guilty about it. This will only come up if the Dragonborn is a member of the Thieves' Guild.
  • Retired Outlaw: Much like his brother and his daughter, Glover is a member of the Thieves' Guild, albeit now retired.

    Teldryn Sero 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/teldryn_sero_8437.png

"The best swordsman in all Morrowind is at your service... for the right price."

Voiced by: Dan Donohue

A cynical Dunmer mercenary who can be found in the Retching Netch Cornerclub and be hired as a follower for 500 gold.


  • Badass Boast: Introduces himself as the "Best Swordsman in Morrowind". He backs it up quite well; in fact, he has one of the highest level caps among the available followers, barring the ones that never stop leveling.
  • Battlecry: Daedric Prince-invoking ones, including the always amusing "Sheogorath's beard, you're an ugly one!"
  • Cool Helmet: Which he almost never takes off.
  • Cultural Posturing: Will often decry most of Skyrim's cities as either backward or unpleasant, including holding up his home city of Blacklight (the vastly rebuilt new capital of post-Red Year Morrowind) as a superior city to Skyrim's economic hub of Whiterun. Despite this, he seems to respect the Nords' physical prowess and appreciates the tranquility of Riverwood.
  • Culture Blind: Expresses astonishment that the Nords bury their dead (the Dunmer practice cremation) and can grow any produce in ash-free soil, despite having previously served as a mercenary in Skyrim for years and living in the Gray Quarter of Windhelm in the past.
  • Cultured Badass: You don't bathe? Well, too bad, Morrowind's finest swordsman will take his services elsewhere.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Surprising for a mere faceless sellsword sitting in the corner of some backwater inn, but Teldryn possibly surpasses Marcurio, Erandur, Mjoll, Cicero, and even Serana as the generally most talkative follower in the game. He's got a unique line of dialogue for almost every city, village, monster lair or dungeon on both Skyrim and Solstheim, the majority of which is either sarcasm, contempt, or black humour. Grows into a Snark Knight if he's a travelling companion of the Dragonborn long enough.
  • The Determinator: Kept up with a Nord warrior across Skyrim in their pursuit of a bandit who'd escaped on horse from a previous assault. On foot. For three days.
  • The Faceless: Refuses to take off his chitin helmet even if you gave him headgear with better stats. The only other vanilla headgear he's willing to change to is the Morag Tong Hood... which is just a darker retexture of the normal light Chitin Helmet he always wears. If one manages to take off his Chitin Helmet (either by recruiting him as a Blade, pickpocketing it, or through mods), you'll find his face is covered in symmetrical tattoos and his hair is cut in a mohawk style.
  • Hidden Depths: Appears to be a strong believer in free will and bears animosity towards anything or anyone that takes it away from others or would willingly give it up (including Vampires, Werewolves and Spriggans of all things).
    • And despite nearly every word out of his mouth being snarky, virtually all of his dungeon dialogue is telling you to be cautious.
    "There are restless dead lurking about. I suggest we proceed with caution."
    "Warlocks are practicing foul magics here. We should be cautious."
  • Magic Knight: A Dunmer Spellsword to be exact.
  • Only in It for the Money: He is a mercenary after all. Further reinforced by the story about how he refused to follow his previous employer, who was an extremely stubborn traditionalist Nord whom he only followed because "he paid very well", to certain death storming a massive bandit encampment because "no amount of money would be worth that kind of death". Also reinforced by his frequent speculations of loot when taken into dungeons and his amused surprise at how wealthy the Dragonborn is when taken to one of the fully furnished Hearthfire estates.
    • Somewhat subverted if the Dragonborn's traveled with him long enough, where he'll remark about how nice it is to travel with someone who's competent; after being dismissed and re-recruited, he'll provide his services for free because the previous adventures were "fun."
  • Playing with Fire: He's a user of Destruction magic and favours fireballs, also summoning Flame Atronachs.
  • Professional Killer: A hired mercenary.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Most elves are long-lived to begin with, but Teldryn's dialogue indicates that he personally knew Jiub, putting him at well over 200 years old.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: His Chitin Helmet has reflective, opaque eyepieces, giving off this effect.
  • Spirited Competitor: "Dragons, eh? Good, I was looking for a challenge."
  • Summon Magic: He can summon Fire Atronachs.

    Crescius Caerellius 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/256px-crescius_caerellius_7919.png

Voiced by: George Coe

An elderly Imperial, fourth-generation miner in Raven Rock. He has become obsessed with uncovering the truth of how his great-grandfather lost his life in Raven Rock's mines and the East Empire Company covered it up as an accident.

  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: He is convinced, basing himself on rather flimsy evidence (namely, one of his father's old letters he recently found), that the East Empire Company has falsely designated his ancestor's death as an accident and that the mine can still be re-opened if he proves it. Everybody in Raven Rock (even his own wife) seems to believe he is just a delusional, foolish old man. Should you agree to help him, it will turn out he was correct. His reopening the mine helps get Raven Rock much needed funding and manpower and it ends up being the second largest source of Ebony in the game, after Narzulbur.
  • Florence Nightingale Effect: His wife was a priestess sent to heal him after his depression caused him to refuse to eat and eventually fall sick.
  • Happily Married: He adores his wife, and it's only for her sake that he doesn't get himself killed trying to reopen the mine.
  • Interspecies Romance: He's an Imperial married to a Dunmer.
  • May–December Romance: Possibly. He certainly looks to be a lot older than Aphia, and describes himself as an old man. However, she's a Dunmer, so she could be much older than she appears.
    • Mayfly–December Romance: Regardless of which is older, Aphia - being an elf - will likely outlive her husband by at least a century or two.
  • Workaholic: So much that when the mine closed, he fell into a deep depression. Mercifully, Councillor Morvayn intervened when it reached suicidal levels.

    Aphia Velothi 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/256px-aphia_velothi_7948.png

Voiced by: Colleen Delany

Crescius's wife, exasperated over his obsession. Formerly a priestess of the Tribunal, she left after a disagreement with the temple elder.

  • Florence Nightingale Effect: They met when she was saving his life and helping him out of his depression.
  • Good Old Ways: It's heavily implied that the reason for her "disagreement" with the elder was her being an ALMSIVI recusant.
  • Happily Married: As noted above.
  • Interspecies Romance: She's a Dunmer married to an Imperial.
  • May–December Romance: Possibly; as stated above, she is an elf, who live much longer than humans. However, she comments to Crescius that she doesn't want "to spend [her] last years as a widow," so it's possible she doesn't expect to live much longer than her husband.
  • Properly Paranoid: Forbids her husband to enter Raven Rock Mine to find his father's journal, arguing that he will just end up killing himself. If you agree to go instead of him, you will find out by yourself that the mine is inhabited by Frostbite Spiders, Draugr, and a Dragon Priest, plus it contains a Black Book. She didn't know any of these things were there, of course, but she was right to fear for his life and is grateful that you undertook the quest in his place.

    Fethis Alor 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/fethis_alor_6911.png

Voiced by: Neil Dickson

The local general merchant, whose daughter helps him at the stand. He thinks poorly of Raven Rock, considering it a wretched town on the brink of desolation. He has many contacts in the mainland and in the East Empire Company.

  • Artifact Collection Agency: He's a one-man one of these, gathering the long-lost East Empire pendants for an unnamed client who apparently hoards them. There are thirteen of these baubles scattered across the island, and he will buy every one you find and bring to him.
  • Overprotective Dad: To the point where he will tell Captain Veleth to stay away from his daughter, reasoning that though the captain's intentions are good, he might not always be around to protect his daughter.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: A benign version of the trope. He boasts about his connections in the East Empire Company; but if you sneak into his house, you can find letters in his basement from Vittoria Vici which make it clear that he's not as highly regarded by them as he would have everyone think.

    Mogrul 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mogrul_dragonborn_5835.png

The only orc in town (and possibly on the island). Always seen with his bodyguard. He's also a Loan Shark and has lent money to several people in town; he can be seen putting the screws to a few of his 'clients.' When the Dragonborn gives one of his borrowers a job as the steward to a Telvanni Master, this puts the man beyond Mogrul's reach.

  • Evil Debt Collector: Mogrul blames the Dragonborn for the fact that he can't collect on the loan he made, so he expects the Dragonborn to pay off the debt. He'll even send goons after you to kill you and get the money off you if you don't immediately agree to pay up.
    • Even outside of this, it's very clear that he's an Evil Debt Collector from the way he treats other residents of Raven Rock who apparently owe him money. Possibly the worst example is when he tells Garyn Ienth, the food vendor, that he had better pay up soon if he wants his "pretty wife" Milore to stay that way.
  • Jerkass: If the other tropes didn't give it away, his generally rude attitude toward you confirms it. For example, when you are handing out samples of a new drink brand to try, the few that do refuse it will just say "no thanks" in a relatively polite way. Mogrul, on the other hand, will practically spit in your face.
  • Kill the Creditor: One method of solving the debt problem.
  • Loan Shark: Unfortunately, he's rather stupid about it.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: His first recourse if you don't immediately pay is to send goons to kill you and hound you till you pay. You can use the same trope to permanently get rid of the debt, even pointing it out to him.
  • Pet the Dog: Despite never having anything nice (or even non-threatening) to say to anyone, including the player, he can still be asked for the location of an Orc stronghold, and will direct you to one without a fuss.
  • Token Minority: The only Orc hanging out in Raven Rock, and one of the few non-Dunmer living there.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Since the man who owes him money now works for a Telvanni Master, he's beyond Mogrul's reach and untouchable. So he turns to you to pay for him, threatening you for money, in spite of the facts that:
    1. You're the Dragonborn, as such you regularly kill dragons.
    2. You are likely to be friends with the First and Second Councilor, and the guard captain. Two of them may also owe you their lives.
    3. You may actually be in the employ of the same Telvanni master who scares him so much, and an honorary member of said Master's house and House Telvanni.
    • It should come as no surprise that the game considers killing him as a legitimate way to finish the quest.

Antagonists

    Miraak 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/miraak_9808.JPG
"And when the world shall listen
And when the world shall see
And when the world remembers
That world shall cease to be."

"You have no idea of the true power a Dragonborn can wield."

Voiced by: Peter Jessop

A former Dragon Priest, and the First Dragonborn, devouring the souls of his former masters to grow strong. He ruled over the island of Solstheim (familiar to players of the Morrowind expansion Bloodmoon) during the Dragon Wars, but like them, he faded into legend when the wars ended. However, also like the dragons, he seeks to return to Tamriel and rebuild his empire.

  • Aesop Amnesia: Why plotting to overthrow much more powerful individuals than himself tends to end up being really bad for his health.
  • Affably Evil: Is chillingly polite to the Last Dragonborn, and constantly sings your praises if you've earned his respect (which is measured by how many dragons you've killed).
  • Armor-Piercing Question: "Do you ever wonder if it hurts? To have one's soul ripped out like that?"
  • Awesome Mc Coolname: His name means "Allegiance Guide" in Draconic.
  • Badass Baritone: The Power Echoes effect to his voice helps.
  • Badass Creed: Also recited, line by line, by those under his Mass Hypnosis, changing out pronouns to refer to him:
    Here in my temple,
    Here in my shrine,
    That you have forgotten.
    Here do you toil,
    That you might remember.
    Here you reclaim
    What faithless minds have stolen.
    Far from yourself,
    I grow ever nearer to you.
    Your eyes once were blinded;
    Now, through me, do you see.
    Your hands once were idle;
    Now, through them, do I speak.
    And when the world shall listen,
    And when the world shall see,
    And when the world remembers,
    That world will cease to be.
  • Badass Grandpa: When he says he could have taken on Alduin, he isn't exaggerating. He's one of the most powerful characters fought in-game, using powerful Shouts including some that "normal" Dragonborns up until now never had (Bend Will, Dragon Aspect). He's one of the oldest characters encountered in the series, dating back to before the Dragon War. Also, under his mask, he's a grizzled older man covered in scorch marks.
  • Badass Longcoat: His choice of clothing is an ornate murky blue (brown in the game itself) coat.
  • Bald of Evil: Downplayed. He's a balding man beneath his mask, but he still has hair.
  • Battle Aura: His Dragon Aspect Shout.
  • Big Bad: Of the Dragonborn questline.
  • Black Eyes of Evil: Has very dark eyes beneath his mask.
  • Bullying a Dragon: His attempted rebellion to overthrow the Dragons during the Merethic Era failed when Vahlok led an army against him. Despite slaying countless dragons before finally falling, he was saved from death when Hermaeus Mora stepped in and transported him to Apocrypha.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Takes measures to prevent the Dragonborn from getting stronger, by teleporting in immediately after they've slain a Dragon and absorbing the soul himself.
  • Combat Tentacles: His staff summons them, and his sword turns into one when swung. His armor also randomly makes tentacles explode around him; if you're wearing the full set of his stuff, expect to be blowing stuff up with tentacles quite a bit.
  • Compelling Voice: His "Bend Will" Shout which he learned from Hermaeus Mora. The first word lets him bend the earth and animals to his will. The second word lets him bend mortals to his will. The full shout lets him command Dragons.
  • Cool Sword: He has a large, organic green blade that turns into a tentacle when swung.
  • Cthulhumanoid: Not one himself, but his armour is designed to evoke this. It's your first clue that he's working for Hermaeus Mora.
  • Defiant to the End: After being impaled through the chest by Hermaeus Mora, his final act is to mock the Dragonborn, telling him Mora will throw them away just like him eventually.
  • Deader Than Dead: After Hermaeus Mora impales him through the chest with a tentacle, his body is reduced to a skeleton, and you absorb his Dragon soul (as well as all his kill-stolen Dragon souls).
  • Deal with the Devil: Made one with Hermaeus Mora for more power and knowledge.
  • Death by Irony: His goal in the end is to consume your Dragon soul. Guess what happens in the end?
  • Dragon Rider: Thanks to his Bend Will shout that lets him command Dragons.
  • The Dragonslayer: Par for the course as a Dragonborn.
  • The Dreaded: As the first Dragonborn, all the Dragons feared him due to not even knowing what the hell he was yet. In fact, after Vahlok succeeded in defeating Miraak, the Dragons were so grateful that they praised him as a hero.
  • Dying Curse: His final words are to taunt the Dragonborn about their inevitable fate as the new Champion of Hermaeus Mora.
    "May he/she be rewarded for his/her service as I am!"
  • Egopolis: He's turning the whole island of Solstheim into one.
  • Elemental Powers: He has Fire Breath, Frost Breath, and Cyclone, and uses Lightning Bolt as normal magic.
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • To the Dovahkiin, as a Dragonborn who could have defeated Alduin and was called upon to help do it, but instead used his powers to try and stake his own claim to world conquest. Not to mention he made a deal with a Daedric Prince for power. The end of the Dragonborn trailer hearkens back to the Skyrim trailer, only with Miraak absorbing three Dragon souls, while a Dark Reprise of the main theme plays with the lyrics twisted to reflect his menace. He even lampshades it.
      So, the first Dragonborn meets the Last Dragonborn at the summit of Apocrypha, no doubt as Hermaeus Mora intended.
    • He can also be seen as the culmination of Arngeir and Paarthunax's warnings about the Dragonborn's innate draconic desire to conquer and the dangers of using the Thu'um for selfish purposes.
  • Evil Is Hammy: When in combat, he really chews the scenery.
  • Evil Overlord: What Miraak aspired to be since he tried his own stake in world domination after learning his nature as the Dragonborn and he could take on his masters. And judging by all his powers and everything he is capable of, he could very well pull it off.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: Not as much as Alduin, but his voice is still pretty deep.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": In most legends he's called "The Traitor." Only a few remember his actual name, let alone that he was Dragonborn.
  • The Faceless: What with being a Dragon Priest and all, he wears a mask. And even after death, we still don't get to see what he looks like because his skin burns away like a Dragon's as you absorb his soul.
    • According to the Creation Kit at least, Miraak is apparently a balding Nord with pitch-black eyes, the latter apparently one of the side-effects of spending far too much time in Apocrypha.
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning: Liberally uses Fire and Frost Breath, and while he doesn't have a Shout for lightning, he covers that with spells.
  • Foreshadowing: The Greybeards warn the Dragonborn not to abuse the Voice for selfish reasons, least it corrupt them as it has done to many a Dragonborn before them. While this warning seems strange at first, given all the great deeds that Talos (the only other Dragonborn mentioned) performed, the reveal about Miraak being the First Dragonborn suddenly shines a new light on the Greybeards' urge for caution.
  • Flash Step: He has Whirlwind Sprint.
  • Graceful Loser: Cut dialogue had him concede defeat to the Dovahkiin. ("Well fought, Dragonborn, but I'm afraid this is not over. I shall return and take what is mine.") Of course, this may have been cut because it flies in the face of the rest of his established character.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: He's built up as an even greater threat than Alduin, with several characters including Miraak himself declaring that he could probably kill Alduin himself if you haven't done it yet. The reason is, of course, that Miraak is a Dragonborn like you; but while you're already a One-Man Army capable of slaying dragons and decimating legions of enemies, Miraak is plain stronger than you (initially), with access to long-forgotten and forbidden Shouts that give him a host of advanced powers, and he has centuries of study under a Daedric Prince to hone his abilities and knowledge. You're the world's best hope to kill Miraak, and if you fail then he'll Take Over the World and nothing and no one would be able to stop him, not even Alduin.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Impaled through the chest with a tentacle by Hermaeus Mora.
  • Hero's Evil Predecessor: Being the original Dragonborn, that is a given. Unlike most examples, Miraak was already evil when he became The Chosen One.
  • A Lighter Shade of Black: While Miraak was hardly a saint, the Dragon Cult and Dragons he rebelled against were much worse.
  • Magic Knight: He's a Dragonborn, so this is a given. In combat, he uses the Thu'um alongside lightning spells and a sword.
  • Magic Staff: His unique staff summons bursts of poisonous tentacles from the ground.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout: Like any other Dragonborn, he has the power of the Thu'um, and he uses the power liberally when fought.
  • Malevolent Masked Man: Like all Dragon Priests, though the design of his mask is different for reasons that soon become evident.
  • Ninja Looter: Killing a Dragon during the main quest might result in him showing up and taking the Dragon's soul for himself. Once you kill him, you get them all back when you absorb his soul.
  • Nonindicative Name: In Dovahzul, Mir means "Allegiance," and Aak means "Guide." (Not to be confused with Miiraak, which means Portal.) It may have been a Meaningful Name before he turned against his Dragon masters, in keeping with his role as a Dragon Priest.
    • It takes on a much darker and ironic meaning after his defection, since his use of the Bend Will shout to force anyone into his servitude works by "guiding their allegiance" to him. It's also possible that "Miraak" was given to him after he became The Starscream, as a form of Ironic Name.
  • One-Man Army: You know all those Dragon skeletons around his temple? It's heavily implied he killed all of them on his own.
  • Orcus on His Throne: Averted; he's actively trying to stop the player by rounding up the souls of any dead Dragons, and therefore limiting their ability to learn shouts. This also makes it difficult for the player to learn Miraak's Dragon Aspect and Bend Will unless they have a surplus of souls absorbed before they meet him, and without the latter you cannot even get to Miraak's lair.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: According to an old legend, his fight with Vahlok was so destructive that it caused part of Skyrim to break off and become Solstheim.
  • Power Echoes: There is a slight reverberation to his voice.
  • Pride: He's extremely arrogant, looking down on you as a "false" Dragonborn despite everything you may have accomplished. If you confront him before completing the main quest, his reaction to meeting another Dragonborn is "so you've killed a few Dragons, am I supposed to be impressed?" Post-main quest, he comments that he could have easily killed Alduin himself, but chose another path. He also considers himself above servitude to anyone, whether it be Dragons or Hermaeus Mora. His attempts to double-cross the latter, however, earn him a very painful reality check.
  • Refusal of the Call: He refused to aid the Heroes of Skyrim in their battle against Alduin, forcing them to send Alduin forward in time with the Elder Scroll. Thus, the call that he refused was passed on to you.
  • Religion of Evil: He has an entire cult at his beck and call whose members believe that he's the true Dragonborn and that you're just an impostor. This misguided belief is slightly justified from their perspective, since Miraak was the first Dragonborn in existence.
  • Signature Move: Dragon Aspect, which he demonstrates during his first meeting with the player character. Particularly notable is that the text of all three Word Walls for the Shout mention Miraak. If you use it against him, he'll compliment you for mastering his own Shout.
  • Smug Super: Miraak practically oozes it. The Dragonborn was at first in the dark about their legend, destiny and powers, relying on the Greybeards and the Blades for information; Miraak, by comparison, has millennia of knowledge and experience, and claims that the Dragonborn has only scratched the surface of their potential. A good example is the first Shout he demonstrates - Dragon Aspect, meant to mock the Dragonborn with how little they know. He also thinks he has the capacity to out-gambit and betray the Daedric Lord of Knowledge and Secrets. Spoiler alert: He doesn't.
  • The Starscream: Was once a Dragon Priest, until he decided that he'd rather devour Dragons' souls than work for them. He also tries to betray Hermaeus Mora. Key word: tries.
  • Super Mode: His Dragon Aspect shout, which takes the form of a draconic aura and allows him to tap into his Dragon heritage.
  • Sympathy for the Hero: Possibly. If you have him at low health, and have killed a certain number of Dragons, he'll have this to say: "Beware. Hermaeus Mora will betray you... as he has me." Could he really be warning the Dovahkiin what victory will cost them? It certainly sounds like it. Cut dialogue also had him saying that he regretted having to kill the Dovahkiin, but "necessity demands it".
  • There Is Another: Indeed, you're not the only Dragonborn. You're the Last Dragonborn of prophecy... but he was the First.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Plotting to betray Hermaeus Mora wasn't very wise. Particularly considering he's the Daedric Prince of knowledge and memory, whose favorite pastime is collecting secrets! Made even worse considering that he's attempting to do so in Hermaeus Mora's own realm.
    Hermaeus Mora: "Did you think to escape me, Miraak?! You can hide nothing from me here!"
  • Trapped in Another World: Instead of being killed as thought, he took refuge inside Apocrypha, but without any Black Books of his own, he's been trapped there; however, he's gained the ability to manipulate sleeping people of Solsteim subconsciously and is slowly having them build a bunch of temples that will suck him back into Tamriel.
  • True Final Boss: Of the full game, since Dragonborn is the last DLC. Accordingly, he's built up to be the player's Evil Counterpart and even more powerful than they are in-story; much of Dragonborn is to power yourself up to get to Miraak's level so you can challenge him as an equal.
  • Unwitting Pawn: By the end, it becomes clear that Miraak was nothing more than a pawn of Hermaeus Mora. He served Mora in two ways: he created a threat that forced the Skaal to give up their secrets to Hermaeus Mora, and his death served as a warning to the player character that not even a Dragonborn could get away with betraying Mora.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Hermaeus Mora does this to him after his failed attempt to claim your soul and escape Apocrypha. Mora then claims you will eventually replace Miraak.
  • Your Soul Is Mine: He's a Dragonborn, so this is his key power. He even steals the souls of the Dragons you kill in Solstheim before you can absorb them. He also wants to absorb your draconic soul. After Hermaeus Mora kills him, you consume his soul. He even gets turned into a skeleton like other Dragons. He uses this to heal himself in the fight against him by summoning one of his Dragons and draining its soul for full health, almost invoking the trope by name in the process - the draconic words he shouts translate to "Your soul is mine to devour."
  • Worthy Opponent: If his combat dialogue is anything to go by, he eventually grows to view the Dragonborn as one. Dummied Out dialogue had him go so far as to admit that you're the true Dragonborn after all.

    Hermaeus Mora 

See Recurring Elder Scrolls Characters.

  • Walking Spoiler: His true role in the plot of Dragonborn is a massive spoiler.

    Ildari Sarothril 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ildari_9842.png

A former student of Master Neloth. She was the subject of many of his experiments, and he now believes her dead and buried. In truth she survived, and turned to Necromancy to raise an army to take out Neloth.

  • Arch-Enemy: Invoked by Neloth, who refers to her as his "Nemesis" when he learns about her survival. From a technical point of view, though, the trope is downplayed; he treats her as a nuisance at best, and doesn't even bother dealing with her himself, instead sending the Dragonborn to kill her. She, on the other hand, certainly sees him as her Arch-Enemy, as illustrated in her journals.
  • Big "NO!": When you finish her off by removing her Heartstone.
  • Blessed with Suck: Neloth replaced her heart with a Heartstone, a process which was intended to grant her great powers. Thanks to him doing it wrong, this ended up causing her to feel constant pain and hear voices, leading her to madness and a hatred of her former master.
  • Evil vs. Evil: On the one hand, she most certainly is a victim, since Neloth is responsible for her current condition. On the other hand, her quest for revenge brings death (and, in one case, undeath) to several innocents in Raven Rock.
  • Gone Horribly Right: She tried to resurrect General Falx Carius, only to find she could not control him and he began sending ash spawns to attack Raven Rock.
  • Hearing Voices: She mentions this in her journal as one of the side effects caused by the Heartstone.
  • Hypocrite: Conveniently forgets that performing the Heartstone experiment was her idea.
  • Kick the Morality Pet: One of the miners who helped her, Niyya, apparently befriended her, to the point that Ildari initially considered keeping her alive. As her madness grew, though, she started seeing this friend as a traitor as well; by the time the Dragonborn kills Ildari, she was about to subject Niyya to a "special experiment, just for her". Exactly what this was is never revealed.
  • A Pupil Of Mine Until She Turned To Evil: To Neloth, though whether or not Neloth could qualify as "good" is extremely subjective.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Toward Neloth, with the unintended effect of inflicting Ash Spawn attacks on Raven Rock.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Upon finding out Neloth has sent the Dragonborn to chase her, she delivers this line:
    "You've gone far enough. Neloth is a fool to think he could send some lowlife to finish me off."
  • Ungrateful Bitch: A group of miners found her weakened after the experiment, took pity on her, and nursed her back to health. She repaid their kindness by turning on them, killing most and keeping those who survived as prisoners to be test subjects for her experiments. By the time the Dragonborn arrives, only one is still alive.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Judging by her journals.
  • The Woman Behind the Monsters: She is responsible for the creation of the Ash Spawn.

    General Falx Carius 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/256px-general_falx_carius_3628.png

"Fort Frostmoth will never fall! Long live the Empire!"

A famous Imperial officer who was operating on Solstheim in 3E 427, and died when his fort was devastated by the initial eruption of Red Mountain about a decade later. He is resurrected by Ildari in her experiment to master the Ash Spawn. Believing himself to still be in his own time, he escapes her control and ends up leading Ash Spawn in strategic attacks on Raven Rock. The Dragonborn eventually slays him.

  • Came Back Wrong: He still knows who he is, but does not realize that he and his men have all been dead for two centuries, that his fort is now a desolate ruin, and that the Legion has long since withdrawn from Solstheim. He's also lost the ability to think rationally, now perceiving anything and everything as a threat to his fort.
  • Continuity Nod: If you played the Bloodmoon expansion for Morrowind, you'll recognize this guy.
  • Drop the Hammer: He holds the Champion's Cudgel, a very powerful enchanted warhammer which randomly inflicts fire, frost or shock damages each time it strikes.
  • Fallen Hero: Tragically played with; he isn't aware that he has fallen, and his motivation remains heroic and patriotic. Sadly, he has become paranoid and wrongly assumes Raven Rock is a threat. After you kill him, Captain Veleth regretfully admits it's a sad fate for someone who was once known as a great hero.
  • Flunky Boss: He has his own army of Ash Spawn he uses to assault Raven Rock; when you fight him, you have to fight them as well.
  • Four-Star Badass: In life, he was a decorated Imperial officer. In undeath, he believes that he still is one (since he doesn't realize that he's been dead for 200 years). He always levels with you; no matter your own level, he is always at a 50% higher level than you. He has perks for his warhammer to ignore 50% of armor per hit as well, easily capable of making him That One Boss.
  • Gone Horribly Right: He was Ildari's first attempt to create powerful undead minions using a Heartstone. It worked... only she couldn't control him.
  • The Man Behind the Monsters: He leads his own faction of Ash Spawn separately from Ildari.
  • Obliviously Evil: As far as he is concerned, he is just defending the Empire's position in Solstheim, and Raven Rock's inhabitants are enemy invaders, including you - even if you're also a member of the Imperial Legion. Since he was alive during the Septim dynasty, he probably doesn't recognize the Medes as proper emperors, thinking you serve an usurper.
  • Tragic Monster: Especially if you played Bloodmoon, it's pretty sad to see what has become of him.

    Haknir Death-Brand 

A legendary pirate king who sailed the Sea of Ghosts, he was feared by many in life and had his treasure laid to rest with his body in Solstheim. The player can seek out the armor buried across the island and ultimately fights his spirit in his tomb to claim his swords.

  • Ace Custom: His unique equipment together make for one of the best equipment sets in the game.
  • Bad Boss: The book Deathbrand says no one feared Haknir more than his own crew, as he was prone to rages and fits of madness in addition to just being a bastard. When he was soon to die, he declared none of his crew would receive his treasure because none of them were worthy of it, and invited any of them to challenge him and best him in battle to prove otherwise. He was a frail old man and the crew numbered one hundred men, but not one of them dared to challenge him. Thus he ordered his treasure buried with him, his armor buried across Solstheim, and once he was in his tomb he ordered his crew to torch their boats and find their own way to live without him or their ships.
  • Blood Knight: He loved in torture and death for their own sake.
  • The Dreaded: Even (perhaps especially) to his own crew. Normally, a pirate captain deeming his crew unworthy of his treasure would be inviting the crew to mutiny; Haknir's crew was too scared of him to do so.
  • Dual Wielding: Wields two custom scimitars in battle.
  • Flunky Boss: He sends the spirits of his crew against you in battle.
  • Full Set Bonus: Taken a step further than the usual. His four pieces of armor not only confer special powers when worn together, but the gauntlets boost dual-wielding damage, and his two swords only get their unique effects when used together. Players are expected to not simply wear all of Haknir's armor, but also wield his swords, in order to get the full benefit of all of them.
  • Ghost Pirate: He and the spirits of his crew are the bosses of the questline, and were pirates in life.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: His moniker comes from a scar on his face. A rumor claims that it's the mark of a pact he made with Mehrunes Dagon for long life and powerful equipment.
  • Inadequate Inheritor: Upon dying, he decided none of his crew were worthy of inheriting his treasure or ship, so he refused to give it to any of them.
  • Life Drain: Bloodscythe drains HP from enemies on hit, but only when wielded with Soulrender.
  • Mana Drain: Soulrender drains MP from enemies on hit, but only when wielded with Bloodscythe.
  • Pirate: An archetypal one who pillaged the Sea of Ghosts for decades and was feared by all.
  • Red Baron: "The King of Ghosts," after the Sea of Ghosts where he sailed. The title is all the more appropriate when the player battles his ghost, as it's still in command of the spirits of his crew.
  • Schmuck Bait: His tomb has a treasure room loaded with all sorts of goodies and too much gold to count. Take any of it, however, and the tomb seals itself shut; the only way out then is through Haknir.
  • Shrouded in Myth: He lived a long time; the Deathbrand book recounts that his quartermaster's grandfather served under Haknir sixty years ago, at which point Haknir was already a famous pirate king. Rumors abound in-game about how he lived so long. The book further notes its contents are just stories that have been passed down through the years and now transcribed, and it's hard to say if there's any truth to the words.
  • Sinister Scimitar: His Bloodscythe and Soulrender join the Windshear (from the Dark Brotherhood questline) as the only unique scimitars in the game. Fittingly, Haknir was a feared pirate rumored to be making pacts with Daedric Princes for power.
  • Treasure Map: The player has to use one to find his four armor pieces buried around Solstheim. Notably, there are no quest markers to point the way; the player has to look at the map and explore the marked locations on foot.

Other Dragonborn Characters

    Ebony Warrior 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ebony_warrior_7954.png
"You are my last challenge. Only you can send me to Sovngarde with honor."

A warrior who has seen and done it all. All that remains is a final, glorious battle so he can depart to Sovngarde happily. He's chosen the Dragonborn for this task, once they're strong enough to be able to actually do it.

  • Astonishingly Appropriate Appearance: Turns out that he legitimately is an Ebony Warrior, and not just because of his armor. He's actually a Redguard.
  • Badass Beard: Revealed when you loot his corpse and his helmet is removed.
  • Badass Boast: "I have done all that can be done. There is nothing left. No quests to be undertaken. No villains to be slain. No challenges to face."
  • Black Knight: Wields a full set of Ebony armor with powerful enchantments.
  • Bonus Boss: He's not tied to any questline in the game, and you have to reach level 81 to even meet this guy. He's also an extraordinarily difficult opponent.
  • Bow and Sword, in Accord: While he mainly uses a sword and shield, he also carries a bow to fight at long range.
  • Bragging Rights Reward:
    • The only reward you get for killing him is the loot on his body, which amounts to a few potions, some high-value gemstones, and his equipment. It's far and away better than the standard Vendor Trash most enemies leave behind, but if you're at a point where you can kill him, you've no need for any of it.
    • In a meta-sense, this may have been why he choose the Dragonborn to be the one to kill him. As a Redguard, it's unknown whether he'd normally have been able to enter the Nordic afterlife, but having been slain in an epic battle with the Dragonborn is presumably worthy enough to convince Tsun to allow him entry.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: He can shrug off most of the powerful spells and effects that could otherwise school him, from Paralysis to Bend Will to even Vampiric Grip. He's even immune to fall damage, meaning that the tried-and-true tactic of Unrelenting Force will be minimally effective against him; in fact, if you send him down a fatal drop, he will instead regain all of his health.
  • Damage-Sponge Boss: Let's see: He wears a full set of Ebony Armor, giving him a very high armor rating, which he boosts even further with Ebonyflesh; his armor enchantments give him 50% resistance to all three elements, and being a Redguard means he gets 50% poison resistance as well; his armor also increases his health regeneration rate; he wields a sword that absorbs health on every hit; he heals himself at low HP; and he's got a pretty large health pool in the first place. Don't expect this guy to go down without a long, drawn-out fight.
  • Death Seeker: He wishes to be slain in battle so that he may go to Sovngarde.
  • Due to the Dead: While you'll likely end up looting his corpse after defeating him, the quest completion entry in the Dragonborn's journal nonetheless comes across as one of the most respectful in the entire game:
    "''I have defeated the Ebony Warrior. May his soul find rest in Sovngarde".
  • The Faceless: While alive at least, you only see him in his armor, including the helmet. When he's defeated, you can loot him to see what he looks like, revealing that he's a Redguard with a Badass Beard.
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning: 50% resistance to all three.
  • Healing Factor: His armor has +40% health regeneration, and his sword absorbs 25 HP with each hit.
  • An Ice Person: His main offensive spell is Frost Cloak, and he carries a Frost-enchanted bow.
  • Magic Knight: He uses magic and Shouts alongside physical attacks.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout: He has the Thu'um, including Unrelenting Force. And you fight him on a mountaintop, so you'd better watch your footing.
  • Meta Guy: In a sense — his declaration that you are his last challenge because he's done everything else worth doing could easily be flipped around to be the player's dialogue, especially since you'll be at Level 80 when you meet him. Toss in his supreme badassery, custom enchanted equipment and use of Unrelenting Force, and your character has met their perfect Foil.
  • Nothing Left to Do but Die: The reason he seeks out the Dovahkiin for a final battle. Good luck granting his wish, though.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Heck, even "Ebony Warrior" isn't much of a moniker; it's just how your character identifies him thanks to his equipment.
  • Scary Black Man: One of the most difficult enemies in the game turns out to be a Redguard.
  • Seen It All: His Badass Boast as given above.
  • Worthy Opponent: The reason he chooses the Dragonborn to be his final duel.

    Neloth 

    Talvas Fathryon 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/talvas_fathryon_3580.png

Neloth's long-suffering and somewhat inept apprentice. He is available as a follower if the Dragonborn assists him by killing an Ash Guardian he summons but cannot control.

  • The Apprentice: Obviously, to Neloth.
  • Ashes to Ashes: A Dunmer conjurer who can use his magic to conjure an Ash Guardian, among other powers.
  • Butt-Monkey: Neloth always uses the poor guy in his experiments.
  • Inept Mage: His attempt to summon an Ash Guardian backfired on him. Yet, despite this, he can train you in Conjuration up to Master-level qualities, which would subvert this trope.
  • Nice Guy: If you help him with the Ash Guardian, he will be very grateful to you, become a follower and reward you either with a staff or the Ash Guardian spell according to your choice. If you choose the latter, he will even carefully explain you what he did wrong to ensure you won't do the same mistake as him.
  • Renowned Selective Mentor: He comments on how it's an honor that Neloth took him on as his apprentice.
  • To Be a Master: His goal. He can be heard muttering about how one day, he'll have just as much power and knowledge as Neloth.

    Akar 

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/akar_6355.png

One of the werewolves in the last remaining pack on Solstheim, found at Frostmoon Crag.

  • Hulk Speak: His sentences are mostly only one or two words long.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: He wears the type of fur armor that consists of a bottom piece and a short cape to cover the shoulders.

    Bujold and Kuvar 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/bujold_and_kuvar_7980.jpg

A Nord couple that lead a band of Skaal near Thirsk Hall. Due to Bujold's incompetence, a horde of Rieklings have taken over the Hall, and the couple need the Dragonborn's help to take it back.

  • Face–Heel Turn: If you try to convince Bujold to accept Hrothmund's judgement about her being an unfit leader, she'll turn on you.
  • Failure Hero: Bujold.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Instead of receiving the spirit of Hrothmund's blessing to lead Thirsk Hall as she thought she would, Bujold is admonished by the spirit for allowing the Rieklings to defeat her.
    • No matter what Bujold's final fate is, Kuvar will give you this if you tell him the truth about Hrothmund's judgement.

    Ralis Sedarys 
https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/lrfdhmi_7849.jpg

A local treasure hunter trying to dig up the secrets of Kolbjorn Barrow. He may ask the the Dragonborn to help him in the form of some 'investment' in his project.

  • Adventurer Archaeologist: Played with. He gets involved on the final stretch, but not before that.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Possibly Not Brainwashed, given his reaction if you decide not to spare him.
  • Dug Too Deep: Considering he is trying to excavate an ancient Nordic burial site, this is to be expected.
  • Karma Houdini: As noted, it's implied his brainwashing might not have been genuine. If so, he's sacrificed multiple people and attempted to do the same with you, but if you spare him, his comeuppance amounts to a slap on the wrist.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Some have speculated that because of his Karma Houdini, he may have been created simply as a follower that no one would feel guilty about sacrificing to complete "Boethiah's Calling", or use as a pack mule.
  • Money Sink: He provides one, since every phase of the operation requires another cash investment from the Dragonborn.
  • Powerful Pick: He carries an Ancient Nordic Pickaxe named Hoarfrost, which bears a unique frost enchantment that can freeze enemies solid.
  • Schrödinger's Question: Possibly the choice of whether or not you should kill him. Assuming he's not lying about having Laser-Guided Amnesia, choosing to spare him means he really was Brainwashed and Crazy, while choosing to kill him means he was Not Brainwashed all along.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Ahzidal the Dragon Priest
  • Unwitting Pawn: To Dragon Priest Ahzidal. Though it's possible he might not have been that unwitting.
  • We Have Reserves: He first only hires the local miners to do the job, and then cheap mercenaries. Neither do very well against Draugr Deathlords. Possibly intentional, since he needed sacrifices to revive Ahzidal.


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