Dark Brotherhood

Online:A Special Request

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Complete a high-profile contract... or two.
Zone: Gold Coast
Faction: Dark Brotherhood
Quest Giver: Astara Caerellius in the Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary;
Location(s): Anvil Castle, Castle Kvatch
Prerequisite Quest: Questions of Faith
Next Quest: Dark Revelations
Reward: Unidentified Sithis' Touch Chest Armor
1 Skill Point
Average Leveled Gold
10 Dark Brotherhood RepReputation
XP Gain: Standard Experience XP
ID: 5596
Unexpectedly, you will witness another Black Sacrament being performed...
Governor Fortunata of Anvil has taken a contract with the Dark Brotherhood. She's added a special request, however. She wants to meet with the assassin personally before completing the deal.

Quick Walkthrough[edit]

  1. Speak to Astara Caerellius in Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary to get the details on the contract.
  2. Travel to Anvil Castle and talk to Governor Fortunata ap Dugal.
  3. Head to Kvatch to proceed with the contract.
  4. Find your way into Castle Kvatch.
  5. Kill Commander Marcus Scipio.
  6. Find Count Carolus and inform him about commander's death.
  7. Accept the second contract.
  8. Travel back to Anvil and speak to Mirabelle for advice.
  9. Enter the castle and poison the wine decanter.
  10. Meet up with Governor Fortunata and inform her of the success of your initial contract.
  11. Share a drink with Fortunata.
  12. Head back to the Sanctuary to inform Astara of the events.

Detailed Walkthrough[edit]

You can optionally speak to Grazda to begin the quest:

"Have you seen the Naughty Nereid Players? They're performing in Anvil, apparently at the Pirate Queen's request. They're a little crass for my taste, but that Torolon is the elk's antlers!
Oh, and Matron Astara wants to see you in the Sanctuary."
Does Astara have another task for me?
"I was asking myself that very same question. Seriously, you're a natural at this. Even Elam says so, and he never compliments any of the initiates.
I bet you'll find out more if you stop asking me questions and get to the Sanctuary."
Right. I'll go and see Astara.

Head to the Sanctuary and speak to Astara:

"A contract has come our way that includes an unusual request. The client wants to meet the assassin assigned to carry out the task before paying our exorbitant fee."
I take it that's not the way things are usually done?
"It's rare, but not unheard of. And the Black Hand agreed, so who am I to complain?
I'd like you to deal with this one, Initiate. Go to Anvil Castle and meet with our client. I'm sure she's got a good reason for making a special request."
Who's the client I'm supposed to meet?
"Oh, didn't I mention? It's none other than the self-proclaimed Provincial Governor of Anvil, the Pirate Queen Fortunata ap Dugal.
I expect you to handle this like any other contract. Locate your target, plan your attack, and make your kill."
I won't fail you, Matron.

Head to Anvil Castle and enter it. You'll find Governor Fortunata seated on a throne in the audience hall past the foyer. Speak to her:

"Well, you look interesting. I'm quite certain I don't remember seeing you around the castle before. Even so, I do hope there's a good reason for this interruption."
<Remain silent.>
"Ah, of course. You're one of them. I wasn't sure you'd honor my request since I refused to perform that ghoulish ritual of yours.
I suppose even the Brotherhood can be bought—for the right amount of gold."
<Remain silent.>
"You're just going to stand there, all dark and silent? Well, I wanted to convey my orders directly so there'd be no misunderstanding.
The Order of the Hour has expanded its mandate beyond the Kvatch Cathedral. That's a threat I can't ignore."
<Remain silent.>
"That is so annoying.
Anyway, I'm sure Count Carolus is behind this. He constantly undermines my authority, damn the man! I want you to kill Commander Marcus Scipio and show the Count that the Hour can't protect him from my wrath."
<Remain silent.>
"Perhaps you could blink once, just to let me know you understand?
Oh, and one more thing. After you murder Scipio, go and tell the Count what you did. Scare the pants off him and drive home the point that the Order of the Hour can't help him."
<Remain silent.>
"I do like hearing myself talk, but this is ridiculous. Ah, well.
The Hour holds Castle Kvatch under lock and key. You'll need to find a way inside to get at Scipio. My Rat Master tells me the guard tower is the best route. The castellan has the key."
I'll kill the Commander and inform the Count when the deed is done.
"The Hour has moved its most elite members into Castle Kvatch and locked the place down. You'll need to find a way inside to get at Scipio.
My Rat Master tells me the guard tower might be the best route. The key can be found on the castellan."
You wanted to meet me?
"I prefer to convey my orders directly, so that nothing gets lost in translation.
You know about the Order of the Hour? The religious warriors that protect the Kvatch Cathedral? They've expanded their mandate and now pose a threat I can't ignore."
So who do you want me to kill?
"I'm sure this is all Count Carolus' doing. He constantly defies me, damn the man! Doesn't he realize the Gold Coast is better off under my control?
Anyway, kill Commander Marcus Scipio. That should show the Count that the Hour can't protect him."
Anything else?
"Now that you mention it, there is one more thing.
After you murder Scipio, go and tell the Count what you did. Scare the pants off him and drive home the point that the Order of the Hour can't stop the inevitable."

Go to Kvatch. At this point, you have two ways to get into the castle: you can use the Intimidating Presence perk if you have it, or you can snag the key from the castellan per Fortunata's recommendation.

Passage via Intimidation[edit]

If you have the Intimidation perk, and want to limit the amount of kills you have under your belt, speak to the Sergeant Luca Plavius, the officer guarding the (locked and inoperable) gate to Castle Kvatch:

"Move along. The castle has been closed by command of the Count of Kvatch and the Order of the Hour."
I have business inside the castle.
"Do you, now? I suppose you have a writ from the Count? Or maybe a seal from Primate Artorius or a pass from an Hour officer?
No? I didn't think so. Move along."
What kind of seal are you talking about?
"You know, a scroll bearing the hallowed seal of the Primate of Akatosh. Shows you have the Primate's blessing.
Without one of those identifying documents, we'd have no way of knowing who belongs in the castle and who doesn't."
How can I get one of those scrolls?
"You can't. Not unless you're a new Hour recruit or you're one of those Chanters from the Cathedral. Other than that, no one else is allowed in the castle at this time.
Now move along before you get on my bad side."

You end up learning that you need a Primate seal in order to enter the castle from the front entrance. Locate Chanter Amia in the graveyard adjacent to the Cathedral, and speak to her:

"I find that a visit to these graves is almost as uplifting as a stroll through the Cathedral."
Do you have one of the Primate's seals?
"Of course. I am one of Akatosh's Chanters, after all.
But why in the name of the Dragon God of Time are you interested in the Primate's seal?"
I need your seal. Give it to me now.
"I will not! That seal is a declaration and a confirmation of my faith, and I take my faith very seriously."
[Intimidate] I need to get into the castle. Give me your seal or become a permanent resident of this graveyard.
"By Akatosh's hourglass eyes, you're one of those dark assassin people! The ones the Grand Sermonizer warned us about!
Look, there's a hidden passage in the moat, along the western wall. Use that route if you really need to get into the castle."
This had better not be a trick.
"I'm not foolish enough to cross the Dark Brotherhood. It's true, normally chains firmly bar the moat door, but that changed recently for reasons I'm not privy to. Someone must be using it.
You can use it too, if you're quick and quiet about it."
<Remain silent.>
"Look, I can't give you my seal. Even if you took it from me, it would do you no good. I'm afraid I can't help you. I don't make the rules, but I do try to follow them.
May Akatosh bless you and watch over you just the same."

Instead of giving you her seal, she tells you of an alternate entrance into the castle: head to the westernmost area of the moat around the castle and enter into the Underground Tunnel entrance found on a small island in the moat. The secret passage leads into a bedroom in the northwestern area of the castle.

Passage via the Key[edit]

If you otherwise lack the Intimidation skill, or want to get your hands dirty, you can steal the castellan's key, as per the Pirate Queen's instructions.

Castellan Condaris lives in a house just west of the local enchanter. Pick the lock and break in. You'll find the castellan on the second floor, kneeling in front of the nightstand that he's placed his key on. Blade of Woe him and take the key.

Head to the gatehouse directly west of the city arena, and use your key to enter. Even though you have the key, this still counts as trespassing, so try not to draw too much attention. The gatehouse passage is fairly short and has some Order of the Hour personnel inside, but other players can appear here too, so the Order guards may well already be dead. The end of the passage has a trapdoor leading to the Castle Kvatch Vaults. The Vaults in turn have more Order personnel along with a Hiding Spot, and a ladder leading into Castle Kvatch proper.

Entering the castle using this method, you will find yourself closer to your objective than you otherwise would be: instead of a bedroom, you will instead enter inside of a small storage area, right outside the chamber the commander is located.

Inside Castle Kvatch[edit]

While inside, sneak or kill your way to the room where Commander Marcus Scipio waits, located in the southeastern quadrant of the castle. If you're sufficiently stealthy (or have Shadow Cloak or an invisibility potion), then it should be easy to quickly Blade of Woe him and move on.

Now, you need to head north, to the Count's Suite: its location is across from the bedroom that you entered, if you used the moat passage. As you approach the door, you'll hear someone chanting softly, and repeatedly:

Man beyond the door: "Sweet Mother, sweet Mother, send your child unto me, for the sins of the unworthy must be baptized in blood and fear..."

Walk through the door and into the suite, where you'll find Count Carolus Aquilarios performing the Black Sacrament. As you approach, he'll react:

Carolus: "Did it work? Yes, it must have. I performed the ritual just as described night after night, and now you're here. I suppose there's no turning back. I have to go through with this, for the people of Kvatch. Fortunata must be stopped!"

Speak to him to continue:

"I have the gold required for payment, but I wanted to offer you something more. I can tell you who's been murdering your assassins."
I'm not here because of the ritual.
"You're not? Then why have you slipped past my defenses and entered my ....
Oh no. Fortunata sent you, didn't she? You're here to kill me?"
Fortunata sent me, but not to kill you. Marcus Scipio is dead. She wanted you to know.
"You murdered the Commander? I see. Another one of Fortunata's insults. Pay to weaken the Order of the Hour, but killing a Count is just a waste of gold.
But you are one of the Brotherhood. And I performed your ritual. Let me pay you to kill her!"
That's not the way it works.
"Then pass along the message to your superiors. Let them know I have gold. And information. I can point you towards the person hunting your agents and -- wait, who's that?
Is he with you?"
<Remain silent.>
"I'll take your silence as agreement. I don't care how, just make sure Fortunata dies. It's the only way I can protect my city. Do that and the gold and the information about the murderer are yours. I'm a man of my word.
Wait, who's that behind you?"

Speaker Terenus will enter the room and beckon you: "Initiate. Let us speak." Talk to him:

"I arrive in response to the Black Sacrament and look who I find.
An interesting turn of events, don't you agree? One contract comes into conflict with another and you're caught in the middle. That makes you the ideal candidate to sort things out."
I am?
"The Night Mother heard the Count's prayer and Fortunata ap Dugal has been named. Her soul is promised to Sithis now. And you will keep that promise.
The Count's contract is yours to fulfill."
I'm already on a contract for Governor Fortunata.
"You completed Fortunata's contract to the letter. No one can say that the Brotherhood didn't discharge its obligations in that regard. Now we have a new contract, and not all the gold in Anvil can change that.
The Count's sacrament is yours."
Governor Fortunata won't survive the day.
"Very good. Seek out your Sister, Mirabelle, in Anvil Castle. She can provide aid and advice should you need it.
The secret exit in the dignitary suite is the fastest route out of this castle. Now go and fulfill the Night Mother's will."

As you leave, the Speaker will say to the Count, "My dear Count, let's discuss the terms of this contact."

The dignitary suite is on the west end of the castle, just down the hall from the Count's suite— this is the same room you've entered if you used the alternate path inside. Within the room, you'll find a wardrobe concealing a secret exit. Interact with it to enter a secret passage, and follow that passage down to hidden exit. You'll find yourself back in Kvatch, standing on a small patch of land at the west edge of the castle moat.

Return to Anvil[edit]

Return to Castle Anvil, where you'll find Mirabelle outside in the courtyard, disguised as a servant and sweeping the floor. Speak to her:

"I assume you have a reason for approaching me while I'm working. What is it? Are you trying to get me noticed?
Wait a moment. Did you run into a problem with the Governor's contract? Did something go wrong?"
Contract's complete. I have a new one. I need to kill the Governor.
"Interesting. I knew we were going to eliminate the Pirate Queen eventually, but I didn't expect that today would be the day.
Why the sudden change, I wonder?"
Count Carolus performed the Black Sacrament.
"He did? I'm impressed. I didn't think the old Count had it in him to ask the Night Mother for help.
First the Governor contracts you to perform a kill, and then you get a contract to kill her. The Speaker must love this!"
Speaker Terenus told me to talk to you before I deal with the Governor.
"Of course he did. I've been studying the castle and the Governor's habits for months now.
She keeps a pantry on the upper level. I suggest a dose of poison. Drop it in her favorite decanter of wine and that should do the trick."

Enter Anvil Castle. Head through the audience hall, to the eastern side of the room, and through the door to the Anvil Castle East Halls. You'll be considered trespassing. The area is defended by several Red Sails pirates, but other players can appear here as well, and they're very likely to have killed many of the pirates on the way to your destination. You probably won't even need to use any of the area's secret passages — sections of the walls that are inset by a few inches, and bordered on either side by red curtains. (If you ask Mirabelle for any advice, she incorrectly describes these as covered by a drape. They are not.)

The decanter is in a dead-end hallway directly south of the entrance to the eastern hallways. Interact with the decanter to poison it, and then find Fortunata elsewhere in the passages south of the audience hall— you can use the secret passage nearby to bypass most of the guards, if necessary. Pick the lock on the door to her suite and walk inside, where you'll find her and her servant, Edwina, waiting for you. As you approach, Fortunata will say, "How in Oblivion's bleakness did you get in here? No, don't tell me. I don't really wanna know your trade secrets."

Speak to Fortunata:

"To what do I owe the pleasure of this unexpected visit? Can I assume that my little problem has been dealt with?"
Commander Scipio is dead and Count Carolus has been informed.
"That's perfect. Splendid, even. I'm going to overlook the way you so rudely barged in here and offer you a drink.
Join me on my balcony. I'm sure you'll appreciate the view."

As she departs the room, she'll give an order to Edwina: "Fetch my wine, girl. You know the one. And bring something... less expensive for my friend here."

Mirabelle serves Governor Fortunata some wine to celebrate the completed contract

Follow Fortunata out to the Anvil Castle Balcony, where she'll speak to you:

Fortunata: "I miss sailing the open sea. Things were more clear out there. Kill or be killed. Take whatever you can carry. Fight to keep what's yours. It's the same here, I suppose. We're just less honest about it."

Mirabelle will enter:

Mirabelle: "Your wine, Governor."
Fortunata: "Mirabelle? Where's Edwina?"
Mirabelle: "You know how clumsy Edwina can be, Governor. While she cleans up her mess, I brought your wine so you wouldn't be kept waiting."

Mirabelle will pour the poisoned wine for Fortunata, and Fortunata will walk to the balcony's edge.

Fortunata: "Initiative. I like that in a serving girl. Very well, then. A toast! To taking what you can and fighting to keep what's yours."

Fortunata will take a drink, and clutch her throat.

Fortunata: "The wine... What did you do?"
Mirabelle: "We'll drink to your memory, Governor. And to the glory of the Night Mother."
Fortunata: "Mirabelle? She's one of... you?'"
Mirabelle: "Life is fleeting, Fortunata. An illusion. And in the end, everything belongs to Sithis."

As Fortunata stumbles backward off of the balcony and falls to her death, Mirabelle will quip, "Tell him I said 'hello.'" To you, she'll say, "I'll see you back at the Sanctuary, darling. After I clean up any evidence of our involvement."

You can exit the castle through a secret passage in Fortunata's suite— a cave filled with Trolls—, or you can simply return to the audience hall through the eastern passages, counting on other players to kill most of the Red Sails and using stealth to sneak past the Anvil Guards in the hall. If you have a Soul Gem to waste, you can also dive off of the balcony, die from the fall, and resurrect on-site. Either way, return to the Sanctuary and speak to Astara to complete the quest:

"The Speaker brought me news of your success in Kvatch. And of the events that followed.
I must admit, I didn't expect you to return from Fortunata's den of pirates and brigands. Does this mean the Pirate Queen has been dethroned?"
Governor Fortunata is dead.
"Then I believe a new title is in order, Initiate. You've demonstrated skills and abilities that we will definitely need in the battles to come.
Stand tall, Assassin. You've earned your place in the Brotherhood and we're proud to have you among us."

Astara once again suggests you go back to your contracts while she discusses Count Carolus with the Speaker.


  • Prior to Update 39, this quest required you to have reached Dark Brotherhood Rank 4.
  • Sergeant Luca Plavius and Chanter Amia won't exist in Kvatch before starting the quest or reaching the related objective.
  • During the objective to assassinate Commander Marcus Scipio, it states he is the leader of the Order of the Hour, when the leader is actually Primate Artorius.
  • Count Carolus Aquilarios won't exist in his chambers before reaching the related objective.
  • While Speaker Terenus suggests to you the quickest way out of Kvatch Castle, you can simply teleport to Anvil if you wish.
    • The same applies later after assassinating Governor Fortunata, for when Mirabelle suggests an escape route. You can teleport to the wayshrine close to the sanctuary instead. In neither cases, no objectives require you to physically make your way out of the castles.


  • The Castellan's key is placed under a pile of lootable coins, which causes the loot prompts to overlap and make it more difficult to take the key. As it counts as stealing, if you have the setting to prevent stealing items, you may have to enable it first to remove the coins. ?
  • To obtain the next quest from Astara, you must leave the room she is in and come back, otherwise it will not appear right after completing the previous one. ?

Quest Stages[edit]

A Special Request
Finishes Quest Journal Entry
I should go to Anvil Castle and find out who Governor Fortunata ap Dugal wants to kill.
Objective: Talk to Governor Fortunata
In order to carry out Governor Fortunata's contract, I first have to find a way to get inside Castle Kvatch. She suggested getting a key to the gatehouse from the castellan or I can talk to one of the officers at the gate and try to gain entry there.
Objective: Infiltrate Castle Kvatch
(deciding to talk to the Castle Gate Officer)
Optional Step: Talk to the Castle Gate Officer
Hidden Objective: Talk to an Akatosh Chanter
Hidden Objective: Use the Moat Passage
(stealing the key from Castellan Condaris)
Optional Step: Obtain the Gatehouse Key
I'm inside Castle Kvatch. Now I need to locate and murder Commander Marcus Scipio, leader of the Order of the Hour.
Objective: Kill Commander Marcus Scipio
I murdered the commander of the Order of the Hour. Now I need to find Count Carolus and tell him what happened to Commander Scipio to complete this contract.
Objective: Find Count Carolus
I found Count Carolus in the midst of performing the Black Sacrament—the ritual used to summon the Dark Brotherhood. I should talk to him and see what this is all about.
Objective: Talk to Count Carolus
It appears that Speaker Terenus came in response to the Count's Black Sacrament ritual. He wants to speak with me.
Objective: Talk to Speaker Terenus
My new contract calls for the death of Governor Fortunata. I should meet Mirabelle at Anvil Castle and see if she has any advice on breaching the Pirate Queen's defenses.
Objective: Find Mirabelle Outside Anvil Castle
I need to reach Governor Fortunata's private pantry on the upper level of the castle and put poison in her favorite wine. Mirabelle suggests I use the secret passage to get around. I can find an entrance wherever I see a red drape over an alcove.
Objective: Poison the Wine Decanter
The wine decanter has been poisoned. Now to let Governor Fortunata know that I killed Marcus Scipio and see if I can get her to drink to her good fortune.
Objective: Talk to Governor Fortunata
Governor Fortunata is so pleased that I completed her contract, she's invited me to share a drink on her private balcony. I should follow her to the balcony.
Objective: Share a Drink with the Governor
Finishes quest☑ Governor Fortunata is dead and Count Carolus's contract has been fulfilled. I should return to the Sanctuary and let Astara know what happened here.
Objective: Return to Astara at the Sanctuary
* Any text displayed in angle brackets (e.g., <Alias=LocationHold>) is dynamically set by the game and will be filled in with the appropriate word(s) when seen in game.
  • Not all Journal Entries may appear in your journal; which entries appear and which entries do not depends on the manner in which the quest is done.
  • Stages are not always in order of progress. This is usually the case with quests that have multiple possible outcomes or quests where certain tasks may be done in any order. Some stages may therefore repeat objectives seen in other stages.