Sven came outside behind Lurren and put his hand on her shoulder. “Don’t mind Vilja, she is just upset. I think it might have been easier on her had you been there.”
“You mean so she would know that I didn’t kill Lydia.” Lurren stared across the road at Solak’s shop.
“We don’t know that. She could be lost, easy to do out here with so many trees.” Sven was standing sideways next to Lurren and studying her face. “Did you go to the mine?”
Lurren looked over at him with a puzzled look on her face. “What do you mean? Lydia is dead.”
His head jerked back at this news. How would Lurren know that? He slowly started backing up. “I think we should be asking you that.”
“Look Sven, I didn’t kill her.”
“Right but yet you know she is dead? By the nine, are you really that stupid? What did Lydia ever do to you?” Sven was appalled at Lurren’s false confession.
“That’s it!” Her hands crossed over each other then flew apart in both directions. “I’m not staying here to be accused of something I did not do.” She told Sven just before the tavern door slammed in her face. He had gone inside the tavern to tell the rest of Lurren’s evil deed.
“Everything all right?” One Falkreath guard asked Lurren as he past by on patrol.
“Just peachy.” She went down the steps toward the general goods store to see if it was open. Maybe seeing Bolund would help her calm down but found the door locked up tight. Leaning her forehead against the door Lurren just wanted out of Skyrim. Nothing has been going well or right. That was confirmed when the tavern door broke open and her ex-followers came flying out after Vilja who was after Lurren.
“I’ll smash your head with my axe!” Vilja screamed as she raced toward Lurren with her weapon ready for battle.
Lurren was an archer far more than a melee fighter and that axe looked like it would hurt. She took off toward the Jarl’s Longhouse and pushed open the door to safety.
Jarl Siddgeir let out a displeasing sigh when the woman barged into his normally quiet house. “Yes? What is it that you want?” His voice sounded bored with little use for anyone who disturbed his tranquil surroundings.
“Bandit leader is dead.” Lurren said as she ducked behind his throne as the door flew open with the pursuing killers entering in.
“Did you execute every last bandit?” He asked the woman hiding behind his throne while watching the approaching bloodthirsty group.
Lurren considered asking if that included ex-bandits as well but remained quiet.
“Sven!” Jarl Siddgeir greeted the Riverwood bard who sang at his birthdays for the last several years.
Everyone came to a screeching halt and looked at Sven who grinned wide at the Jarl. “My Jarl, good to see you again.”
“Good work on killing those bandits. Teach them to stop paying me. Here. You deserve a reward for your service.” The Jarl tossed Sven a large coin purse containing 700 gold pieces. “You know what? I like you. I hereby grant you the right to purchase property in Falkreath. Speak to my steward if you are interested.”
Lurren just rolled her eyes at yet another reward handed over to someone else. Who would want to buy a stupid house in the place? Well perhaps one by Bolund but she didn’t notice any houses nearby that were vacant.
“Thank you, my Jarl. Is there anything else you need?” Sven was thrilled to finally have his own home. Perhaps Nadina would live there with him.
“There is room in my court for a new Thane. It’s an honorary title, mainly, but there are a few perks someone like you could make use of. However, I could only grant the title to someone who is known throughout my Hold. You help my people, and I’ll make you my Thane.”
Lurren wanted to speak up about that thane thing but decided against it. Maybe this title doesn’t come with a housecarl and she won’t be blamed for that one dying.
The group was huddled together, checking off the tasks they had done for the people of Falkreath. They picked crops, stole a message from Lod’s house and delivered ashes to the priest. They were good to go.
“I have helped your people, Jarl Siddgeir.”
“Then by my right as Jarl. I name you Thane of Falkreath. Congratulations. I grant you this weapon to serve as your badge of office. I’ll also notify my guards of your new title. Wouldn’t want them to think you’re part of the common rabble.” He gave Sven a steel greatsword enchanted with magical properties. “On your way then.” Dealing with the bard was one thing but this other rabble was too much for him.
The group momentarily forgot about Lurren and followed Sven up the stairs to find Nenya, the Jarl’s steward.
Jarl Siddgeir reached behind his throne to shoo Lurren away but she slapped at his hand. He tried from the opposite direction only to be met with the same results. Using both hands he attempted it again but found Lurren clamped down his hands. “Isn’t there somewhere else you should be?” He asked in that tone that you just know was to belittle you.
Nenya was pleased when Sven asked about property and sold him a fine piece of land with a fantastic view of the lake. “I just need for the Jarl to sign off on the deed.” The group followed the steward back down stairs.
Jarl Siddgeir has his arms stretched out behind his throne. “Yes, what is it?”
“My Jarl, I just need you to sign here for the property deed.” Nenya was eyeing the position he was in thinking it looked strange. “What are you doing?”
“Exercising my arms.”
“I see, well could you please sign this?” Nenya held out the deed along with a quill.
He tried to free one hand but Lurren made sure it wasn’t released. “Perhaps I could sign it with my toes.”
“Your toes, my Jarl?” Nenya knew he liked to try new things but signing documents with his toes was news to her.
“Yes, yes. Just remove my boot and sock, stick the quill between two toes and I will sign.” He struggled to free his hands without much luck.
Nenya drew the line at that request. “I could sign it myself in your presence.”
“Oh very well, make it quick.” The jarl didn’t care how it got signed or by whom, he only wanted his hands free.
Nenya signed the deed and gave it to Sven. “Here you are.”
“Over here!” Nikolai shouted for Thrynn as he bent down to inspect Lydia. It was clear she was dead and blood was everywhere. He lifted her chin to find the open gash then quickly removed his finger. “Over here!” He shouted again while standing back up and moving back. ‘How did this happen? Why wasn’t I paying closer attention!’
Thrynn was pushing aside trees limbs as he came up to Nikolai. He stopped when he could see Lydia’s feet while Nikolai blocked the rest of her. “I guess she is gone.”
“Aye, she is. Someone slit her throat wide open.” Nikolai regained some of his composure. “I’ll carry her back to Falkreath. Maybe Runil will bury her here or help get her home to Whiterun.”
Looking closer at the lifeless body, Thrynn nodded in agreement. “Come on, I’ll help you.”
Vilja knew Lurren was hiding somewhere in the Jarl’s residence. She still held the axe in her hand while scanning the main room for the agent. How strange for Lydia to disappear when Lurren leaves the group alone. There was only one person to blame. The axe was put away when Vilja decided killing Lurren inside the building was probably a bad idea. Spending her final days inside some dungeon cell for killing a worthless woman wasn’t an idea she liked.
The group left the building to find the plot of land Nenya sold Sven. Nikolai was talking with Runil about Lydia while the priest began cleaning her up. Thrynn was headed up the path toward the center of the small village when Vilja spotted him.
“Thrynn!” She raced toward him. “Did you find her? Where is she?”
He stopped to wait for her to approach then took her arm moving them off the pathway. “We did.”
“Where is she? Is she with Nikolai? Oh, I’m going to have words with her for scaring me!” Vilja was looking around for the other two but saw nothing.
“She is with Nikolai and the priest of Arkay.” Thrynn was looking over Vilja’s head, as he didn’t want to see her cry. “Lydia is dead.”
Vilja was shocked at the news. Sven had told her the truth about Lurren knowing this before anyone else did. She tried to breakaway and go to the graveyard but Thrynn held her tightly. “Let me go! I must see her!”
“No. You don’t want to see her” He pulled Vilja against his body holding her close as she cried.
Jarl Siddgeir sighed as he tried again to free his hands. “Isn’t there some place you need to be?”
Lurren released his hands. “Probably. Hey, have you heard anything about massive amount of bandits being in this area?”
“No but if I do you will be first one I toss to them.” He was rubbing his wrists while glaring at Lurren who was now in front of him.
“Is there anything else you need?” Lurren decided to ask just in case he had more bandits to get rid of.
“Aside from needing you to leave? Nothing comes to mind. So why don’t you go and do whatever it is that you do.” Siddgeir was glad to see his housecarl wake up and coming down the stairs.
Lurren loved it when they wanted to know what she did. “Actually I am a bandit hunter. Came to Skyrim to hunt down top leaders and rid this land of their activities. Naturally getting to these bandits can be tricky but with any.” She noticed some strange man was heading toward her causing her to back up for the door.