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|King Hlaalu Helseth|
King Hlaalu Helseth as seen in Tribunal
|Appears in||Daggerfall, Tribunal|
Hlaalu Helseth, a male Dunmer, was born to Queen Barenziah and Symmachus in 3E 376, and he is the older brother of Morgiah. Before the "Warp in the West", he spent most of his time blackmailing, bribing, and even killing nobles in attempts to expand Wayrest's influence. After failing to obtain the throne of Wayrest when his step-father King Eadwyre died, he returned to Mournhold in Morrowind with his mother. Once there, he joined the court of his uncle, King Athyn Llethan. After a relatively short period of time, Talen Vandas, Llethan's chosen heir, died, followed soon after by the King himself, leaving the throne of Morrowind to Helseth. This caused rumors that Helseth had poisoned them, a telling of events that the Queen Dowager, Ravani Llethan, backs up: she also knew of and appears to have been allied to a conspiracy, within House Hlaalu itself, against Helseth in favor of a candidate more acceptable to the House (evidently Helseth's status as being technically an outlander, not born in Morrowind itself - and a pro-Imperial outlander as well, sharing the sentiments of his father who had fought for the Empire against his own province - counted against him by comparison with a native Hlaalu of Morrowind, despite the fact that Helseth too is a member of the House, and indeed was the nephew of King Llethan). The Tribunal Temple also initially conspired against him, but were thrown into disarray by the fall of their living gods.
After becoming King, Helseth quickly started to cement his hold on power by using the Dark Brotherhood to assassinate a variety of targets, including attempting to kill the recently reborn Nerevarine, though according to Helseth this was a mistake - and one which backfired heavily, since the entire newly-formed Mournhold chapter of the Brotherhood was wiped out when the Nerevarine pursued the attacks back to their source. The truthfulness of Helseth's apology is suspect, as there was another attempt on the Nerevarine's life while guarding Queen Barenziah for the new King. Strangely, King Helseth tends to play up his habit of assassination, as he was one of the driving forces to publish A Game at Dinner, a book that accuses him of murder.
In a shrewd political maneuver, King Helseth, representing his own House Hlaalu, formed an alliance with House Dres. Subsequently, he renounced the slave trade, setting the remaining Houses of Indoril and Redoran against him in a bloody civil war. Helseth emerged from the war battered, but without the loss of his essential powers, leaving the slave trade generally destroyed, and slavery without a foothold in all of Tamriel, although the practice persists in remote areas away from Mournhold. However, after the successive catastrophes of the Oblivion Crisis, the Red Year, the Argonian invasion and the break-up of the Empire which had backed him, at some point during the next 200 years House Hlaalu fell from prominence and Redoran became the new preeminent house. Neither Helseth nor Barenziah's fate after these calamities is known.
- In newer versions of Daggerfall, Helseth is actually depicted as his true Dark Elf self, rather than a Breton.