Dark Brotherhood guide

Dark Brotherhood Skyrim Guide

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is a massive, open-world PRG in which the player takes on the mighty task of saving the world of Nirn from a world-ending event.

The dragons of legend have returned to Isles of Skyrim, and it is the Dragonborn’s duty to save everyone from these harbingers of destruction. In this epic fight between good and evil, though, the player will also have the opportunity to get a little bit distracted.

Dark Brotherhood

Through myriad side quests and additional content, the player can spend hours upon hours scavenging the wilds of Skyrim without ever coming into contact with the main story; this is just one of the reasons that gamers, myself included, are still playing the title today, more than a decade after its initial release.

Some of these Skyrim quest lines and missions are simple little fetch quests wherein the player doesn’t have to think too much, and the reward comes either in the form of gold or some unique weapon. However, some of these side missions take on a life of their own, giving the player as much content and immersion as the main Skyrim quest line does. One of these such side questlines is the Dark Brotherhood storyline.

Yes, as expected by most Elder Scrolls fans, the Dark Brotherhood has returned to this edition of the Elder Scrolls franchise, bringing back their memorable and much-loved assassination quests to the Isles of Skyrim. These missions are really fun and unique when compared to some of the others in the game, and therefore it should be no surprise to anyone that they are some of the most well-played missions in the game.

To this end, this guide will give you, the player, a deeper insight into the Dark Brotherhood of Skyrim, their history, missions, and the Dragonborn’s place within the order. So, what are we waiting for? Let’s get right into it.

The History of the Dark Brotherhood

Second Era

The Dark Brotherhood was founded in the Second Era, originally developing out of a religious order called the Morag Tong. This order was devout worshipers of the Daedric Princess Mephala.

This Daedric Princess, also known as Webspinner, Spinner, Spider, Androgyne, and Plot-Weaver, is known to hold power over spheres regarding sex, murder, and secrets. She is also known to enjoy tempting mortals, drawing them into her web of moral depravity, with her end goal usually being to push said mortals all the way to murder.

From this, we can see how the Morag Tong turned into the band of horrid cutthroats they did, worshipping the maleficent force for so many years had warped their minds until they eventually committed murder on behalf of their divine patron.

Their deviance did not last for long; however, not long after they began this ritual murder spree, the order was dispended due to the lack of leadership within their ranks. Enter the Night Mother, wife of Sithis.


Sithis is also known as the Dread Father and also as the representative of the Void itself. Sithis is the deity of the void and, therefore, the lord of all thing’s death, hence the Dark Brotherhood’s worship. Sithis is neither an Aedra nor Daedra. Instead, he is simply Padomay incarnate, the force responsible for all chaos and change in the world of Nirn.

The in-game book, The Definitive Guide to Daedra, found in the Oblivion game, states that Sithis was and is the state of nothingness that existed before the creation of Nirn.

It is the Night Mothers’ connection to this force that granted her the power to receive the requests made during the black sacrament. The same power which enables her to continue the direction of the Dark Brotherhood today.

The Night Mother

The Night Mother, also known as the Blood Flower or the Lady Death, is known to have been the wife of Sithis, the Dread Father of the Dark Brotherhood.

The Night Mother is known to have lived during the Second Era and to have taken over leadership of the Morag Tong in Morrowind. There are countless unconfirmed rumors surrounding the Night Mother, which simply have not yet been confirmed.

Firstly, one rumor suggests that the Night Mother is actually a physical manifestation on the mortal plain of Mephala, in the shape of a Dunmer woman. Other rumors, however, state that the Night Mother was simply a position, a title given to the leaders of the Morag Tong.

No matter what the actual truth is, the Night Mother or someone holding the position of the Night Mother managed to organize the Morag Tong into a well-oiled unit, setting forth doctrines of operation that are stilled followed by the Dark Brotherhood today.

The last known residence of the Night Mother was in Bravil, wherein she bore her husband, Sithis, five children, around the year 2E 324. These children were then subsequently murdered by the Night Mother in offering to the Dread Father so that their souls could join their father in the Void.

This is evidenced in the Elder Scrolls Oblivion as when the player enters the Night Mothers tomb underneath the statue of the Lucky Old Lady in Bravil; the player can find the bones of 5 young skeletons.

This act was soon found out by the people of Bravil and thus led to the formation of a lynch mob. This mass of Bravil residence decided that the only punishment suitable for such a crime was her death. After this, they burned her house down.

The Foundation of the Dark Brotherhood

After this event, the cult of murders went silent, with nobody to guide them; they once again faded into the night, most likely murdering simply for the fun of it.

Then, after 30 long years, a man began to hear strange voices in his head, urgings, and propositions coming from a female entity he couldn’t quite pinpoint the source of. This man was the first Listener, the first mortal the now deceased yet still powerful Night Mother had chosen to contact.

Once this man gained awareness of these voices and found out just where they originated, we can assume he began working to form the Dark Brotherhood under the command of the Night Mother. Their operations were conducted in secret for fear of similar repercussions faced by the original Night Mother.

This lasted for a great deal of time; we can only assume that the first-ever mention of the Dark Brotherhood in text form didn’t come until 2E 412 in the diary of Blood Queen Arlimahera of Hegathe. In this journal, she reports how her family had hired the Dark Brotherhood for generations, all the way back to her grandfather.

Third Era

By the time of the Third Era, the presence of the Dark Brotherhood across Tamriel was widely known, with chapters situated in each part of the continent.

Whilst the ruling authorities in this land did wish to shut down their operations, there was also the air of acceptance surrounding the order during this time; whether that was out of fear or apathy, we simply do not know. After all, around the mid-point of the third era, they did have some more pressing concerns.

The Oblivion Crisis 

During the Third Era, around 3E 433, the assassination of the then Emperor, Uriel Septim the Seventh, kicked off the events which would later be known as the Oblivion Crisis, wherein the Daedric Prince Mehrunes Dagon tried to take over the world.

During this time of death and horror, one can see how the Brotherhood would flourish. Their numbers and influence grew to the greatest height in their history. This growth was most likely aided by the structures put in place within the order in between the histories of the Second and Third eras. These structures included the Black Hand and the Five Tenants.

The Black Hand

This subsection of the Brotherhood serves as the overall ruling body for the organization on the mortal plane. This group is made up of 5 members, one for each section of a hand.

There are four speakers who make up the index, middle, ring, and little fingers, as well as the Listener who serves as the thumb. Each of these five members also appoints an assistant, known as a Silencer, who serves their master in any way possible, known as the nail.

To join this subsection of the Brotherhood, you have to be chosen via your actions and devotion to Sithis. During the Oblivion Crisis, the Black Hand member Lucien Lachance was murdered and framed for betraying the order; his spectral form can still be summoned and looked to by members of the order for advice.

The Five Tenants

These are a set of rules and morals followed by the Dark Brotherhood up to and including the Oblivion crisis, only to be abandoned under Astrid’s leadership in the Fourth Era. The breaking of any one of these tenants brought with it the threat of expulsion or death.

At times, in fact, a member known to have broken a tenant would be set upon in the night by a wraith sent by Sithis from the void. These tenants are as follows:

  1. Never dishonor the Night Mother. To do so is to invoke the Wrath of Sithis.
  2. Never betray the Dark Brotherhood or its secrets. To do so is to invoke the Wrath of Sithis.
  3. Never disobey or refuse to carry out an order from a Dark Brotherhood superior. To do so is to invoke the Wrath of Sithis.
  4. Never steal the possessions of a Dark Brother or Dark Sister. To do so is to invoke the Wrath of Sithis.
  5. Never kill a Dark Brother or Dark Sister. To do so is to invoke the Wrath of Sithis.

The Fourth Era


Coming into the Fourth Era and after the Oblivion Crisis, the Brotherhood suffered through many events that brought them back down to earth, damaging them for the foreseeable.

In 4E 188, the city of Wayrest in the province of High Rock fell to corsairs, and therefore the Wayrest Sanctuary was subsequently lost not long after, with all members being murdered by the corsairs. In response to this, the Black Hand decided to shut down the Corinthe Sanctuary, forcing the Brotherhood’s members to flee over to Cyrodiil, joining the Cheydinhal Sanctuary.

Later, on the 27th of Hearthfire in 4E 188, the city of Bravil succumbed to bubbling unrest wherein the two biggest Skooma traffickers in the province went to war. This culminated in the statue of the Lucky Old Lady being attacked.

This, therefore, put the crypt of the Night Mother in danger, and so the then speaker, Alisanne Dupre, left her home, accompanied by other order members to defend the crypt. Not long after leaving, only one member returned with the coffin of the Night Mother, reporting that the Listener had been burnt alive.

Not long after this, the Brotherhood of Cyrodiil was on its last legs, without a Listener to provide work; many of the members left in order to make money however they could then, a member named Rahsa declared himself the Listener and reported being able to hear the Night Mother.

This was determined to be false, and he was subsequently murdered by Cicero, the Night Mothers Keeper. This left only Cicero in the Cheydinhal Sanctuary for nearly eight years, slowly losing his mind, until finally, he asked Astrid in Skyrim for Sanctuary.

Skyrim and the Dragon Crisis

This brings us up to the events of Skyrim and the Dragon Crisis. By the time the Dragonborn arrives at the Dark Brotherhood, they find the order a shadow of its past self; having abandoned the tenants and the concept of the Listener long ago, this faction looks out for themselves and, under the leadership of Astrid, have persisted and remained the only functional arm of the Dark Brotherhood, but they might just need the Dragonborn’s help to return to any semblance of their former glory.

The Main Characters of Skyrim’s Brotherhood Chapter


When the player first meets Astrid, she is the leader of the Dark Brotherhood in Skyrim and has somehow managed to keep her order going throughout a period wherein the order has all but collapsed. This Nord can be found in the Falkreath Sanctuary along with her husband Arnbjorn.

For players unfamiliar with the Dark Brotherhood, they may assume that her leadership and therefore the way the Brotherhood runs under her leadership is the norm. This is actually far from the truth. Under her leadership, the Falkreath Sanctuary has abandoned the 5 tenants, a decision the leader will later admit to being a key reason for her inevitable downfall.

The decision to abandon the tenants and many other decisions we can see Astrid make during the storyline, display to the player that she is an authoritarian leader, concerned with her place within the Brotherhood more than anything else. This need to rule therefore leads to her betraying the Dragonborn as well as disrespecting the Night Mother and her authority.


This character holds the position of Night Mothers Keeper and is therefore a respected member of the Brotherhood, however, he has actually gone quite mad since he acquired this position, and therefore his arrival in the Falkreath sanctuary causes some problems.

In brief, Cicero was a member of the Cheydinhal sanctuary up until the death of the listener previous to the Dragonborn, after her death, the sanctuary was deserted by Brotherhood members who needed to find other work, leaving Cicero alone with the corpse for 8 long years.

During this time he went mad and began talking to the Night Mother in the hope of becoming the listener. After long enough, he decided to reach out to Astrid for sanctuary, an offer she could not refuse due to his position.

Later in the Brotherhood questline, Cicero can either be killed or spared. Killing him is said to be against the wishes of Sithis and yet it will relieve the player from having to hear his annoying tone. Sparing him will later allow the player to acquire him as a follower.


This Redgaurd is probably the person who gives the Dragonborn the most unique quests during the Brotherhood storyline, dishing out kill contracts sometimes three at a time. We do not know much about nazir or his history, only informing the player that he grew up in Hammerfell and that he did things in his past that he is not particularly proud of, what this is, however, we never find out.

This NPC, whilst also a master trainer of the light armor skill, is also one of the few surviving members of the Brotherhood after the Penitus Oculatus attack and is, therefore, the Dragonborn’s right-hand man after rising to leadership of the order after the Hail Sithis quest, using the money received for the emperor’s assassination to spruce up the Dawnstar Sanctuary at the Dragonborn’s instruction.


Taking the spot for creepiest Brotherhood member on the list is Babette, the Breton child vampire is trapped in the body of a ten-year-old girl whilst actually being over 300 years old. Creepy right? Interestingly though, due to her age, she would have been alive during the Oblivion Crisis, maybe she knew Lucien Lachance?

Alongside Nazir, Babette is one of the characters spared by the Penitus Occulatus attack and is therefore still alive and interactable after the move to the Dawnstar Sanctuary, important if one wishes to make use of her master level Alchemy training. Considering she is the only Master trainer in this skill in the entire game, maybe try and get on her good side.

Dark Brotherhood Quests in Skyrim

Innocence Lost

This is the first main quest in the Brotherhood storyline. It involves the player entering the city of Windhelm. Before long, the Dragonborn will overhear tales of a little boy called Aventus Aretino; these rumors will talk about how he has been attempting to contact the Dark Brotherhood via the Black Sacrament. Hearing this will therefore trigger the quest.

Heading towards and entering the Arentino Residence, the player will find the young boy praying over the Black Sacrament. When he sees you, he obviously assumes that the stranger who just broke into his home is indeed a member of the Dark Brotherhood. The player can either go along with it or correct him; either way, you are given the quest to kill old Grelod the Kind, the headmistress of Aventus’ Orphanage.

Heading over to Honorhall Orphanage and killing this horrible old woman will therefore complete the quest once reported back to Aventus.

In Brief:

  1. Grelod the Kind can be killed in full view of anyone in the orphanage, and no bounty will be placed on the player.
  2. Grelod is the weakest character in the game with an HP of only 2.

With Friends Like These

Completing the Innocence lost quest will therefore get the attention of the Brotherhood; apparently, they do not take kindly to outsiders stealing their business. This quest starts after the Dragonborn is met by a courier sometime after completing the first quest.

This note will be called the ‘Mysterious Note’ and simply have the imprint of a black hand on it, with the words ‘we know’ written underneath. After receiving this, the player needs to sleep in a bed for the next part of the quest to begin.

Sleeping will allow Astrid to capture the Dragonborn, taking them to a shack in the marshes north of Morthal. After waking up and talking to Astrid, the player has two choices. They can either kill Astrid and fail all other Brotherhood quests, beginning the Destroy The Dark Brotherhood quest.

Otherwise, the player can pick one or all of the hooded captives in the shack to kill. All of them will either plead their innocence or give you some kind of attitude. The game is to determine which one is the murderer. No matter who you kill, though, Astrid lets you leave and points you towards the Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary in Falkreath. Entering the Sanctuary will then complete this quest.

In Brief:

  1. Although nobody in the shack appears hostile, if the player attempts to fast travel out of there, the menu will state that they cannot due to enemies being nearby.
  2. The black execution hoods found on the bound NPCs are unique to that location in the game.
  3. Similar to Oblivion, the player must sleep to instigate this quest. Though, they must wait until they receive the note.


This is the first quest the Dragonborn is given after being made a full Dark Brotherhood member, beginning as a Dark Brotherhood Initiate. It involves the player walking around the Sanctuary, introducing themselves to all of the members before being given their first set of contract kills.

The player can also rummage around the Sanctuary and grab some Shrouded Armor which is the perfect light armor for a Dark Brotherhood assassin. Although, for those that prefer heavy armor, you won’t be able to obtain a Dark Brotherhood branded heavy armor set without downloading specific a Skyrim mod from Skyrim Nexus. These contracts will task the player with the following:

  1. Kill Beitlid
  2. Kill Narfi
  3. Kill Ennodius Papius

After killing each of these people for Nazir and, therefore, the Dark Brotherhood, the player must return to the Sanctuary in order to report their success. After returning, the Dragonborn will see some commotion occurring in the Sanctuary; this is over the heads of the arrival of Cicero and the Night Mother into the Skyrim Sanctuary.

In Brief:

  1. Beitlid can be found in Dawnstar whilst Narfi resides in Ivarstead, and Ennodius lives near Anga’s Mill.
  2. The player can cash in each contract after they kill the NPC; they do not have to wait to kill all three.
  3. Whether you return to the Sanctuary after completing one contract or all three, Cicero will appear on your re-entry.

Mourning Never Comes

This is another contract kill mission. A simple enough quest given by Astrid after the arrival of Cicero involving the Dragonborn killing a man by the name of Alain Dufont, located in Raldbthar, a Dwarven ruin where he and his bandit buddies reside.

There is also the option to also kill a woman by the name of Nilsine Shatter-Shield in Windhelm. However, there may be an issue in finding her if the quest Blood on the Ice is not completed first.

Whispers in the Dark

This quest begins when speaking with Astrid; the player discovers that she is becoming very suspicious of Cicero and the conversations he is apparently having in the room where the Night Mother’s coffin is being kept. She, therefore, wants the player to hide in that room to find out who Cicero is talking to. This involves the player actually hiding the coffin itself.

When the player eventually hides in the coffin and Cicero begins his conversation, it is clear that he is talking to himself in the hopes that the Night Mother would eventually speak to him and make him the Listener. However, this never occurs; instead, whilst the player is in the coffin, the Night Mother will illuminate and begin speaking with the player character.

During the Dragonborn’s conversation with the Night Mother, she will tell the player to find and accept a series of contracts from a man named Amaund Motierre in a burial ruin called Volunruud, also to tell Cicero the binding phrase, ‘darkness rises when silence dies.’

After the Night Mother has finished speaking, Cicero will discover the Dragonborn leading to a commotion that also brings Astrid into the room. After telling Cicero the binding phrase, he becomes ecstatic and informs Astrid that the player is indeed the Listener. The player then has a conversation with Astrid telling her all the Night Mother said. She tells the now Listener to ignore this mission and instead head to Nazir for some contracts whilst she scouts out the mission.

In Brief:

  1. The phrase the Night Mother tells the player to say is the Binding Phrase which the man who claimed to be the Listener previously did not know, thus resulting in Cicero murdering him.
  2. The player can ignore Astrid’s command and seek out Volunruud for themselves, Amaund will be there and give you the quest.

The Silence Has Been Broken

This is another quest wherein the player must travel around Skyrim killing and therefore fulfilling contracts for the Dark Brotherhood. These contracts state the following:

  1. Kill Deekus
  2. Kill Ma’randru-jo
  3. Kill Anoriath

After you complete these contracts, the player will be instructed to head over to Volunruud to find the contract as the Night Mother Instructed. Upon arriving, the player will learn that Amaund wishes to pay the Brotherhood a handsome sum in order for them to carry out a series of contracts resulting in the assassination of the Emperor of Tamriel. After this, Amaund will give the player a note and an Amulet for ‘expenses.’

The player must then return with these items to Astrid. She is obviously doubtful considering the request and how the player received the contract in the first place and thus sends the player to her Thieves Guild contact, Delvin Mallory. This guild member can be found in the Ragged Flagon underneath Riften.

Once you tell Delvin you are from the Brotherhood, he will inspect the amulet and inform you that it is from the Emperor’s Elder Council, thus affirming the contract. He then later sends the player back to Astrid with a letter of credit from the guild for any expenses required. Returning then to Astrid will complete this quest.

Bound Until Death

This is the first big move the Brotherhood makes in order to assure the emperor’s presence on the Isle of Skyrim. It involves the murder of his cousin on the day of their wedding.

To begin this quest, the character must wear some fine clothes and enter the Temple of the Divines in Solitude, where the wedding is taking place. Once at the wedding of Vittoria Vici and Asgeir Snow-Shed, the player will have to find some way of killing the bride.

There are many ways of killing this contract, each of which has its benefits and negatives; however, should the player wait and make sure to kill the contract in the middle of her speech upon the balcony, the player receives a reward in the form of level-dependent gold and a spell which can summon the specter of Lucien Lachance.

No matter how you achieve the murder of Vittoria, Astrid will still accept the quest as complete and send the player to fellow Brotherhood member Gabriella. This concludes the quest and begins Breaching Security.

In Brief:

  1. This quest can be completed in many ways, with a lot of in-game elements available to be manipulated by the player.
  2. The murder can take place at any time to complete the quest. However, should the kill not take place atop the balcony, no bonus will be given.

Breaching Security

This is the next quest the Brotherhood must undertake in order to bring their plan to fruition. Given by Gabriella, the player may track down and steal the journal of Gaius Maro, the son of the emperor’s head of security, in order to find out his travel route.

Knowing his schedule, the player can plan better the method of the agent’s death. Once again, this quest can be completed in myriad ways depending on which location the Dragonborn decides to dispatch him along his route.

Once the murder has taken place, the player must plant some incriminating evidence of the body of Maro. This incriminating letter will detail how Maro was plotting to assassinate the emperor.

By killing Maro, the hope is to send the head of the emperor’s security detail, Commander Maro, into emotional disarray whilst simultaneously disrupting the security forces and making the emperor drop his guard, thinking that the only assassination attempt on his life has already been foiled. Planting this letter will therefore finish the quest.

In Brief:

  1. This quest can be completed without the acquisition of Maro’s travel schedule.
  2. If Maro is killed outside of a city, the player will receive a reward bonus.
  3. Gaius’ schedule will change if the player is spotted by him. This will result in the player having to wait for him to return to his normal schedule.

The Cure for Madness

When returning to the Sanctuary, the player is met by Gabrielle, who instructs the player to report to Astrid right away. Astrid then informs the player that Cicero had gone crazy and tried to kill them all before fleeing the Sanctuary.

After reading his diaries, the player will find the location and password for the Dawnstar sanctuary, a forgotten remnant of the Brotherhood, not used in years. The player, along with Arnbjorn, then travels to Dawnstar in order to find the crazy Jester.

When the Jester is finally located, the player learns that he only lost his control because Astrid had questioned the authority of the Night Mother, and therefore, he is innocent. At this stage, the player can either choose to kill Cicero or let him live.

In Brief:

  1. The player can acquire Cicero as a companion if they let him live.
  2. Cicero goes into hiding until Astrid’s death; afterward, he can be found in the Dawnstar Sanctuary.
  3. If the specter of Lucien Lachance is summoned, he will advise the player against killing Cicero because of his highly respected position as keeper of the Night Mother.

Recipe for Disaster and To Kill an Empire 

These quests go together quite nicely as it involves the player taking the place of the emperor’s most favored chef, an Orc called the Gourmet and taking the writ of passage off of his body in order to gain access to the emperor’s dinner. Doing this will therefore allow the player to poison the emperor of Tamriel.

Poisoning the emperor will then have the Dragonborn attempting to escape via a back door. When leaving, the player will be confronted by Commander Maro and several of his soldiers. It turns out that the man you just assassinated was a decoy and not the actual target. You have been double-crossed, Maro informs you, by Astrid in return for the Brotherhood’s continued operation under the eyes of the Penitus Oculatus.

However, he then informs the player that he has no intention of letting the Brotherhood continue and is going to destroy the Sanctuary right after he kills you. Of course, he isn’t aware that you are the main character of this story and therefore cannot be killed. After you defend yourself and kill these agents, the player will ride to the Sanctuary, only to find the building on fire.

In Brief:

  1. When the player finishes talking to Maro, the Dragonborn will lose the ability to fast travel to the Falkreath Sanctuary.
  2. Whether the player completes the quest without being detected until the very end, there is still a bounty of 1500 gold placed on the player.
  3. Doing what Astrid did would have broken many tenants of the Dark Brotherhoods’ code if she hadn’t disbanded it.

Death Incarnate

As the player arrives back to the Sanctuary amidst the attack of the Penitus Oculatus, they are tasked with first coming to the aid of his fellow Brotherhood members and then escaping the fire by hiding in the Night Mother’s coffin.

The player must then confront the burnt Astrid before she dies and ask for her explanation. After hearing her out, the player must kill Astrid and retrieve the Blade of Woe, returning to the Nigh Mother afterward.

Hail Sithis!

Much like the Lannister’s, the Dark Brotherhood always repays their debts. After returning to the Night Mother, the player is tasked with bringing the Brotherhood back together, completing the assassination of the emperor, and using the reward to rebuild the Sanctuary.

To complete this quest, the player must board the ship Katariah, docked outside of Solitude, and kill the emperor Titus Mede the Second. The key to the room that the emperor is hiding in can be found on Captain Avidius, who resides in the forward cabin of the ship.

After killing the emperor, the player must return to Amaund Motierre and retrieve the 20’000-gold payment from a dead drop in the crypt of Volunruud. The player must then report back to Nazir and complete the quest and the entire Brotherhood storyline.

In Brief:

  1. Whilst this is the final of the storyline, the Night Mother will still give the player murder contracts long after its completion.
  2. The Dragonborn can lie to Nazir about the amount of money given to him by Amaund in order to fix the Sanctuary. This extra money is then pocketed by the player.
  3. The end of this quest begins the Where You Hang Your Enemies Head quest, wherein the player gets to furnish the Dawnstar Sanctuary.

Best Brotherhood Rewards


Of course, we cannot talk about the rewards gained from the Dark Brotherhood questline without putting Shadowmere right up at the top. This mount is given to the player at the beginning of The Cure For Madness quest by Astrid in order to catch up quickly with Cicero. At the end of this quest, the player is then given the horse permanently.

This mount cannot be forgotten, simply because of its uniqueness. not only is Shadowmere the only horse of its kind in the entire game but it is also the strongest. lastly, there are certain Elder Scrolls fans out there, me included, who loved Shadowmere from previous entries in the franchise, and by including this mount once again, it adds a bit of nostalgia which is hard to quantify.

Blade of Woe

Again, another item coming back again from previous installments in the franchise. The Blade of Woe can be looted off Astrid’s body just after her death following the Penitus Oculatus attack. However, should you be pursuing a more law-abiding playthrough, the player can also acquire the weapon by killing Astrid after they are captured and brought to the abandoned shack.

This dagger is not only nostalgic for us returning players, but it is actually the strongest base dagger in the game up until the installation of the Dragonborn DLC. Once this is installed, the blade ties with the dragonbone dagger.



Another weapon to add to your collection, Windshear is a unique scimitar blade found on the Katariah ship during the Hail Sithis quest. Whilst this weapon is not technically a reward for a quest well completed, the Brotherhood questline is the only way the player can acquire the sword without some cheeky console commands.

To find this unique blade, the player should head towards the main deck of the ship, continuing to the front of the ship, the player will see a beam protruding from the bow wherein Windshear will be found stuck in the ship itself.

The sword does a base damage of 11 but the real power comes from its enchantment which works by increasing the player’s likelihood of knocking down an enemy via a bash attack.


Question: How to join the Dark Brotherhood in Skyrim?

Answer: Go to Windhelm and find the house of Aventus Arentino. In this house, he will give you the quest which begins the Dark Brotherhood storyline.

Question: Which captive should I kill in the Dark Brotherhood quest?

Answer: It does not really matter which captive you kill or if you just kill all of them. There does not seem to be a right or wrong answer here.

Question: Can you free the prisoners in the abandoned shack?

Answer: The only way for the player to leave this shack is by killing one of the prisoners or Astrid. Even if you kill Astrid and free the prisoners, they do not leave the shack.

Question: Who is better Arvack or Shadowmere?

Answer: Whilst Arvack can be summoned to wherever the player is, Shadowmere is stronger in battle.

Dark Brotherhood Skyrim Guide: Gold, So Much Gold!

Completing the Dark Brotherhood storyline involves the player killing the most important man in Tamriel. As one might imagine, this quest may be the most ambitious quest ever taken on by the Brotherhood in their entire history, therefore, it is important that the order and therefore the player is rewarded properly.

Whilst not actually a unique reward, the amount of gold given to the player by Armound is quite astounding, 20’000 gold. This amount is the highest the player will receive for any quest reward in the game, DLCs or no, and therefore earns its place in this list. I mean, how many sweat rolls could that buy a hungry explorer?

So, there you have it, a complete guide to the Dark Brotherhood before and during the arrival of the Dragonborn. Hopefully, now that you are armed with this knowledge, you won’t go breaking any of their tenants anytime soon; we know how that plays out! Either way, whether you enjoy becoming a ruthless assassin or prefer the lighter side of this fantasy RPG, I truly hope this guide has been of some help. All the best and happy exploring!

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