Samuel opened the door and walked out of Esbern's "house" and pulled out his sword. Three Thalmor agents ran up the steps to Esbern and him.
"There's the Blade! Kill him!"
Suddenly, a purple portal opened and a being made of flame stepped out. It set the three agents on fire and went back into the portal.
Samuel turned around and saw Esbern had a spell in his hand.
"You did that?" asked Samuel.
"I summoned a Flame Atronach from Oblivion."
"That's the plane of existence for daedra, right?"
"Correct. Let's keep moving."
Samuel and Esbern walked into the inn.
Delphine walked out her room and looked at Esbern.
"It's...been a long time."
"Nearly forty years, you damn old fool," said Delphine. "I thought you were dead."
"So did I."
Samuel awkwardly cleared his throat.
"Right," said Esbern. "Samuel said you have a planning room, Delphine?"
They walked into the secret room and stood around the table.
"I had a book about our next move..." muttered Esbern, rummaging through his pack.
"Esbern, what are you talking about?" said Delphine.
"Ah! Here it is," said Esbern. He laid a dusty brown book on the table.
Delphine rummaged through it. "I thought this was a myth...it even has the exact location..."
"What are you talking about?" asked Samuel.
Esbern smiled. "The ancient Blades, also known as the Akaviri, built Sky Haven Temple, and inside the Temple they made Alduin's Wall, the prophecy of Alduin's defeat at the hands of the Dragonborn. The exact scenario of his defeat is unknown, however. This Wall should tell us how to defeat Alduin."
"Alright then," said Samuel. "Where's Sky Haven Temple?"
"Karthspire, a mountain in the Reach."
The carriage pulled into the Markarth stables. Delphine pointed out the road ahead of them. "Karthspire is down the road. We turn left at the bridge.
The trio walked down the trail, taking in the breathtaking views of the mountains. They walked over the bridge, toward Karthspire. An earsplitting roar echoed throughout the area as a massive dragon swooped down toward them.
"Run!" shouted Delphine.
Esbern summoned another Flame Atronach from Oblivion to distract the dragon. They arrived at the foot of Karthspire. To their dismay, the Forsworn's main camp was here, and it was big. The natives dashed out of their tents, dressed in furs from Talos-knows-what. The camp was built on a wooden dock covering the huge lake that is the source of the Karth River.
"For the Old Gods!" they shouted, blasting ice and fire spells at Samuel.
FUS RO DAH!
The larger group attacking Delphine and Esbern was launched into the water.
"Who are these guys?" asked Samuel.
"Natives!" said Esbern. "They're trying to liberate the area from the Nords!"
The dragon had killed the Flame Atronach, and was now attacking Karthspire Camp. Strangely, the Forsworn still focused on the trio. Ran up a set of ancient stone stairs. A cave entrance was at the top, along with three Forsworn.
The dragon swooped low, below the cave entrance, and Samuel jumped onto its back, clinging to its horns, using his other hand to slice and stab it. It breathed fire on the Forsworn, turning their camp into a massive inferno. Samuel saw Delphine shove Esbern into the water, and dive in after him.
They'll be safe there, he thought.
The dragon was clearly being weakened by Samuel's constant sword strikes, and was now trying to shake him off. Samuel pushed down on the horns, shouted FUS RO DAH! and its neck, and it fell toward the hill near the riverbank. It slammed into the ground and sent dirt flying everywhere. Its scales began to burn up.
Samuel awoke, but kept his eyes closed.
There's no way I survived that, he said. I must be in Sovngarde.
He was. He walked to the Hall of Valor, where valiant heroes spent eternity feasting and celebrating. The god Tsun stood guard.
"By what right do you deserve entry?" he asked.
Before Samuel could answer, a dragon swooped down and picked him up. Samuel screamed at looked at it. It soul burned up and he absorbed like normal. The skeletal dragon dropped him. Before Samuel became a ghostly blood splatter on the Hall of Valor's roof, he woke up underneath a dragon skeleton, back at Karthspire.
"Esbern, he didn't survive. No one could survive a fall like that. Even if he did, he would've been crushed by the dragon," said Delphine.
"But look," said Esbern. "The scales are gone. When a dragon's soul is absorbed, only the skeleton is left. He must be alive, he absorbed the soul."
"Esbern you have to accept this. Not even Talos could survive that."
"I don't know about Talos, but I sure as Oblivion did. Well, sort of," said Samuel.
Esbern smiled. "I have a feeling the dragon soul brought you back. Did you see Sovngarde?"
"Yes, I did. It was..." he tried to think. Sovngarde was impossible to describe in words.
"It's all right, don't hurt yourself."
Samuel pointed to the cave entrance at the top of the stairs. "I think that's the entrance to Sky Haven Temple.
Delphine spoke while she and Esbern helped get the dragon skeleton off him. "We scouted inside. The remaining Forsworn are gathered in there."
"How many?" asked Samuel.
"Not many. Most were killed in the fire. A dozen, at most."
"Did we just wipe out the Forsworn?" asked Samuel.
"Not likely. This isn't their only camp."
The trio walked to the cave and drew their swords. The three Forsworn near the entrance stood up.
"Did you hear that?" one said. "Come on, let's check it out."
Samuel gripped his sword tightly. He slipped into the shadows, nearly becoming invisible in the dark. A trick he learned in Cyrodiil as a thief.
He stabbed one in the back with his sword, and shot the other with his bow.
Delphine took out the last one with her katana.
They walked through the cave until they came into an opening much older than the Forsworn.
They walked along a stone bridge over a massive pit. To their right was another bridge, but it was raised like a drawbridge.
Three stone pillars stood in front of them. Each a different symbol etched on it.
Esbern studied them. "The symbol of an arrow shape pointing down is the Akaviri symbol for Dragonborn..."
He grabbed one and turned it so the arrow symbol was facing them. "Someone get the third pillar."
Samuel turned it so all three pillars displayed the Dragonborn symbol. The raised stone bridge lowered so they could walk across. The bridge led into the tunnel that curved slightly upwards. The next chamber looked like a giant trap. The floor was covered in pressure pads small nozzles. Samuel placed his foot on a pressure pad and a spurt of flame sprayed out of the nozzle, setting his leg on fire. He put his shield away and his hand had a spell in it. It glowed warmly and he pressed his hand to his leg. The flames sputtered out and the burn marks faded.
Esbern's eyes twinkled. "A healing spell..."
Samuel looked at a chain at the center of the room. He remembered the Whirlwind Sprint shout the Greybeards taught him. He looked at the chain and shouted.
His body shot forward like it was fired out of a gun. The world blurred. When his vision cleared, he was standing by the chain. He pulled it down. Delphine walked onto a pressure pad and nothing happened. They kept walking until they came to a larger chamber with a face carved out of rock and a stone circle in front of it.
Delphine looked at the carved face. "It's Reman Cyrodiil, the founder of the First Empire. The ancient Blades revered him."
Esbern walked over to the circle and touched it. "A blood seal. Another one of the lost Akaviri arts. No doubt triggered by...well, blood. Your blood, Dragonborn."
Samuel stood at the center of the seal and knelt down. He took out a dagger and made a small cut in his palm, and a few drops of blood fell and activated the seal. Reman Cyrodiil's massive face rose up, revealing it to be a secret door covering a small stairway.
"The entrance to Sky Haven temple," said Esbern. "Samuel, you should have the honor to be the first to enter Sky Haven Temple, as Dragonborn. Reman Cyrodiil was Dragonborn too, you know."
Samuel walked the stairs and pushed open the ancient stone doors that had not been opened in over two thousand years.
The next room had light streaming in from holes in the cave ceiling, illuminating a massive stone carving that could only be Alduin's Wall. Esbern and Delphine followed after him. Esbern walked up the Wall.
"You see the carving? In the center, we have Alduin being defeated--"
"Wait, he was defeated?" said Samuel. "How is he still here?"
Esbern's brow furrowed. "The three Nordic heroes, Gormlaith Golden-Hilt, Hakon One-Eye, and Felldir the Old banished from this world, from this plane of existence. Somehow, he has returned."
"So, we need to find out how the three heroes defeated him, so we can defeat him this time?"
"Yes. Permanently, this time," said Delphine.
Esbern continued. "See the symbols coming from the heroes' mouths? That's the Akaviri word for Shout. They used a shout to defeat Alduin."
Delphine grimaced. "So we need a shout then?"
She turned to Samuel. "Do you know a shout like that?"
He shook his head. "The Greybeards might."
She sighed. "I was hoping we could leave them out of this, but we have no choice."
"You don't like the Greybeards?"
"No. If they had their way, you'd do nothing but stay up on that mountain of theirs and stare at clouds, or whatever it is they do."
"Don't worry. I'll get Arngeir to help me."
Esbern looked like a child on Christmas. "Your prophecy is written here as well, Dragonborn. It was read off an Elder Scroll at the end of the Oblivion Crisis."
"What is my prophecy?" asked Samuel.
Esbern studied the runes.
"When misrule takes its place at the eight corners of the world
When the Brass Tower walks and Time is reshaped
When the thrice-blessed fail and the Red Tower trembles
When the Dragonborn ruler loses his throne, and the White Tower falls
When the Snow Tower lies unsundered, kingless, bleeding
When the sons of Skyrim spill their own blood
The World-Eater wakes, and the Wheel turns upon the Last Dragonborn."