The Elder Scrolls: Fate of Tamriel
You look up from the well-worn copy of The House of Troubles as you hear her approach the merchant at the counter. “Pardon me,” she says, “but I have a book to sell that may interest you.”
You crane around the shelf to see a small Breton brunette, not long out of girlhood. Dressed in drab leather armor and a dark cloak with the hood down, she offers an old book to the merchant, who carefully takes it in hand.
“The Nightingales Volume Two,” he says, trying not to sound impressed. “What We Were.” He knows how rare this book is, just as well as you do. If the Breton’s grin is any indication, she knows its worth, too.
“I meant it as a gift for a friend, but he has a copy. Volume One is the one he needs.” She smiles, briefly. As she moves her weight from one hip to the other, you note the knives at her belt. “Perhaps you might have better luck with it?”
The merchant lays the book on the counter. “Would Vinderion be the friend you mean, young lady?”
She nods. “He speaks very highly of your shop, sir, and now that I’ve seen it for myself, I can see why.”
Her flattery is lost on him; the implication of his next question is plain: “And how did this book come into your possession?”
“I found it in Ironbind Barrow, tangled in a frostbite spider’s web.” If she’s lying, she’s got a gift for it. “Still and all, I feel that it cleaned up nicely.”
But suspicion darkens the shopkeep’s features. “Grave robber, eh?”
“One man’s grave robber is another man’s adventurer,” the Breton says brightly. “If you aren’t interested in the book, I’m sure I can find someone else who-”
The shopkeep lays a hand over the book. “Now, let’s not be hasty, miss…?”
“Martine,” she says, pale blue eyes gleaming like ice. “Call me Martine.”