In which Leona discovers the rumors are true and there are dragons.
Helgin is a small mountain village in the southern half of Skyrim, but the elevation means its almost Windhelm cold. I arrived there just past midday and quickly discovered that the city had been utterly destroyed. There were piles of rock and wood where buildings used to be and only a few structures still stood, and even fewer weren’t open to the elements.
Bandits had made their home in the mess. No doubt to catch unwary travelers who hadn’t heard of the destruction. A small number had made their homes in the remains of the Keep and I was working to clear them out when suddenly the air was spit by roaring and the walls came down on me, showering dust and pebbles.
I raced outside to see what had caused that and came face to face with a dragon.
Everyone knows the dragons are gone, but there was no doubt in my mind that this was indeed a dragon. It – he crouched on a crumpled wall and when he saw me, our eyes seemed to meet across the courtyard. For a moment I felt caught in his gaze, pulled towards him, then he screamed again and took off. I watched him take to the sky until his pale form melted into a cloud near the mountain top and disappeared from view.
My legs shook and I trembled as if freed from a paralyzing spell. I see now why our ancestors worshiped the dragons, they are horrible and magnificent at the same time, like the Daedra. I wondered what I was supposed to do now? Could I really return to Riften and hunt the forests there in peace knowing that there were dragons loose in the sky?
I made my way north down the mountain, one eye to the skies. Each time the birds flew overhead casting a shadow on my path, I jumped, but there was nothing more dangerous than a falcon. Eventually, around nightfall I arrived in the small village of Riverwood. The people there had all heard the dragon, although not everyone had seen it yet. It was often seen flying overhead around dawn and dust. They were worried it would attack them as it had Helgin and wondered if I’d go ask the Jarl for more guards in case it every decided to land nearby.
I agreed to do so and the next morning made my way to Whiterun to ask the Jarl for aide. The roads were sunny and bright and made the idea of dragons almost absurd to my mind, but I wouldn’t forget those eyes anytime soon and their memory seemed to put a chill in the air.