Daggerfall: Blackmailing Prince Helseth
- Talk to Prince Helseth at Castle Wayrest.
- Come back after one day and take a letter from him.
- Deliver the letter to Lord Castellian or King Eadwyre.
- Return to Helseth for your reward or scolding.
A Royal Summons
This quest becomes available once you reach level 4. If you speak to Prince Helseth before this, he mentions having a special task that would be perfect for you, but he believes you are not yet ready for it. Helseth can be found Castle Wayrest, sitting on a table in the dining hall behind the throne room. Speak to him, and he gets straight to the point:
- "I need a courier, (player's first name), but no common, jelly-armed, gas-headed pox of a mercenary will do. I have a letter of utmost importance to be delivered to a high dignitary who will be defended against unwelcome intrusion. In return for this, I will not only reward you with a (magical item), but also put in a positive word for you with the king and queen of Wayrest, but I will give you some information on the affair with Daggerfall I doubt you would receive elsewhere. Does this sound like an agreeable arrangement?"
- "Excellent. Meet me here this time tomorrow and I will give you the letter and the name and location of the recipient."
The prince whines:
- "Dullard. Why did you let me waste my time with the likes of you?"
Accept the prince's offer. After a day has passed, return and speak to Helseth again. He greets you by saying:
- "Ah, hello again, (player's first name). Here is the letter. It is to be given to Lord Castellian, the head of the elder council, who is currently at his house (residence) in (town). I need the letter delivered and you back here in no later than (time limit) days -- that is essential. Like I mentioned before, Lord Castellian values his privacy to an excess. Be prepared for some resistance at your arrival in (residence). I would ask that you not read the letter as it is private correspondence. If word of its contents gets out, I will blame you."
At this point, you have several options: proceed with the quest as instructed, read the letter, or you may alternatively deliver it to King Eadwyre instead of Lord Castellian.
Once the letter is in your possession, you can ignore Helseth's instructions and take a look at it. The letter reads as follows:
- My Dear Lord Castellian,
- Sorry about the necessity of delivering this
- letter by the roughest possible service, but it
- would be unthinkable to approach you at the castle
- on such a delicate matter. I have long admired your
- loyalty to the crown and neutrality in internal
- affairs. Understand that I only want to save your
- dignity from a possibly embarrassing scenario.
- The problem rests in your sister, the Lady
- Pasipha, who though she resides abroad still
- communicates regularly with members of court.
- I understand and respect the depth of your sibling
- love and affection for one another, for, in
- response to a curious inquiry of mine, Lady
- Pasipha sent me several touching letters penned
- in your hand.
- "Have you ever espied with delight a red berry
- half-drowned in cream? So I dream of you, my
- dearest love, pouring my soul into you, sweet,
- for your touch, dear, my soul is quite forfeit."
- While your and I know the innocence of your
- fondness for the lady, the more prurient minds at
- court, as you are aware, are inclined toward
- grotesque misinterpretation. Her husband, I
- understand, is famous for his jealous rages. I am
- of several minds on the matter, how to best avoid
- possible negative reaction, and would appreciate
- your response at the soonest possible opportunity.
- I will await you at Castle Wayrest.
- Prince of Wayrest
The missive is an obvious attempt at blackmail. Note that if you decide to read it, your reputation with the nobles of Wayrest will fall, and you will not be able to successfully complete the quest.
If you wish to expose Helseth's scheme, speaking to Eadwyre at this point will deliver him the letter (regardless of whether or not you read it). The king grows incensed at his stepson:
- "Why that conniving, manipulative weasel. You did well by bringing this to my attention, (player's first name). Thank you."
This will earn you some reputation with King Eadwyre and Wayrest, but also means you fail the quest (see below); you will not receive a reward from the prince.
To continue the quest, travel to the city where Lord Castellian lives and locate his residence. Enter and deliver the letter to him, which triggers the following:
- You wait while Lord Castellian reads the letter. His skin grows pale and his hand begins to shake.
- "I see. Please wait while I pen a response to Prince Helseth."
- It only takes him a minute to write the response, which he then hands you.
Return to Prince Helseth with this letter to receive your reward. Be aware that reading Lord Castellian's reply will cause your reputation with Helseth and Wayrest to drop precipitously (though the prince will still give you the reward he promised). Lord Castellian's response reads:
- Prince Helseth,
- I appreciate your kindness, and I
- will meet with you very shortly at
- your convenience.
- Lord Castellian
However, if you have read Helseth's letter before delivering it to Lord Castellian, he will realize something is amiss:
- "This letter has been opened. You exceed the bounds of a courier, (player's name)."
Lord Castellian will speak no further on the matter, but he will send several knights and battlemages after you who speak for him, saying: "Lord Castellian has ordered your death. He wanted me to tell you that you know too much."
He will not give you a reply letter in this case, and you will not receive a reward from Prince Helseth.
You also have the option of delivering Lord Castellian's response to King Eadwyre, for the same reputation gain as with Helseth's letter. This also means you fail the quest and miss out on the prince's reward, however.
Deliver Lord Castellian's response to Prince Helseth. He gives you the promised magic item and the information he promised:
- "Anyway, here is the (magical item) I promised. Never let it be said that Prince Helseth is not a man of his bond.
- Oh yes, I promised to tell you something of the situation in Daggerfall. I suspect my family has more to do with it than is commonly known. We sent advisors to urge King Lysandus and King Camaron to mend their differences on the eve of the Battle of Cryngaine Field. Lysandus was loyal to the emperor, where Camaron was fighting for more autonomy. According to the advisor's report, they arrived too late because they were waylaid by the Orcs of Gortwog en route. However, I have heard stories that, at least some of our advisors arrived at Lysandus' tent and spoke to him briefly. At this time, I cannot say more. If I receive more information or if the situation progresses, I will certainly send you word."
Helseth adds: "Well done (player's name). Your budding reputation appears to be deserved. Lord Castellian is quite pliable now."
Additionally, if you read Lord Castellian's reply the prince goes on: "So you like to read the missives of your betters. Don't expect me trust you again anytime soon."
Completing this quest is necessary to be offered the optional quest Barenziah's Book, though you must meet all the other requirements before it will activate.
If you didn't read either of the two letters:
If you read Helseth's letter:
If you read Lord Castellian's letter:
If you read both letters:
|Other associated factions of Wayrest||-13|
If you give either Helseth's or Lord Castellian's letter to King Eadwyre:
- 2x One Battlemage every seven in-game minutes when speaking to Lord Castellian after you have read the letter you should deliver to him
- 6x One Knight every four in-game minutes when speaking to Lord Castellian after you have read the letter you should deliver to him
- In the absence of third-party mods or patches, it is only necessary to wait approximately 16 hours after first speaking to Helseth for the quest to continue.
- Since Castle Wayrest is technically a dungeon and separate from the city, it is possible for Lord Castellian's residence to be found in Wayrest. This can make the quest much quicker to complete.
- The questfile contains two letters Helseth could give the player; the alternate letter was intended for use if Elysana's Robe had been completed before starting this quest. However, due to the way the quests are constructed, this cannot happen and thus the second letter will not be seen in-game. Installing the DFQFIX patch will give a 50% chance of either letter being used. The alternate letter reads:
- My Dear Lord Castellian,
- Forgive this rough delivery, but it
- would have been impolitic to approach you
- at the palace with this potential problem.
- Unfortunately, your much deserved vacation
- will have to temporarily suspended until
- this matter is settled.
- I refer to your sister, Lady Pasipha.
- For years, she has been one of the most
- glamorous figures at the Wayrest court,
- the darling of all who appreciate beauty
- and grace. Rather recently, rumors have
- circulated that the gold she has spent on
- her gowns and jewels could not have possibly
- come from her husband, who is at present,
- impecunious. Distasteful conjectures followed,
- none of which worth the ink I would use for
- To be quite blunt, a person, who must
- remain anonymous, postulated to me that you
- were borrowing funds from the royal treasury
- to support your sister's extravagance. Of
- course, I defended your honor, but copies of
- the Royal books were produced that seemed to
- support the allegation. I am thus uncertain
- of the best procedure to take next.
- Do not doubt, sir, that I am convinced
- of your integrity as senior member of the
- Elder Circle of Wayrest. I only wish for the
- matter of the financial records be straightened
- so if they are brought to Eadwyre's attention,
- they can be confidently defended.
- Please send a reply with this trusted
- courier. I would prefer to meet with you as
- soon as possible, of course.
- Very truly yours,
- The questfile also contains dialogue that was to be used if Elysana's Robe had been completed. Instead of boasting of how Lord Castellian was now under his thumb, Helseth would say:
- "It is really too bad that you were not a bit faster (player's first name). My sister Elysana is betrothed. Without her opposition, it was not truly necessary to deliver that letter to Lord Castellian. However, I'm sure I can turn this to my advantage somehow."
- If you complete Elysana's quest while Helseth's is still active, a courier arrives with some gold and a note (see bugs). The delivery is from Helseth and reads:
- Dear (player's name),
- Due to the recent marraige of my sister Elysana,
- I shall not be needing your services with regard
- to the delivery of the letter to Lord Castellian.
- Since you have acted on my behalf with honor, I
- have instructed the courier to give you 100 gold
- pieces for your time and effort so far.
- Prince of Wayrest
- The Daggerfall Chronicles refers to this quest as "Blackmail".
- Important: You must do this quest prior to Elysana's Robe because Lord Castellian, the victim of Helseth's plot, dies permanently at the end of Elysana's quest. Hence, Helseth won't have a victim and therefore will not offer you his quest. In addition, Queen Barenziah won't offer you her quest, as its activation depends on a successful outcome of Helseth's quest. Here are some more details how the receiving of Barenziah's quest works:
- Once you have completed Helseth's quest and received your reward, his quest will not terminate; it will remain active in the background until you reach the required level and reputation with Barenziah to start her quest. However, if you complete Elysana's Robe to Elysana's approval, a message from Helseth pops up saying you should have been faster in delivering his letter, even if you already have delivered the letter for him (presumably he shouts this message back from the dining-hall). Once you get this message, a trigger is started to end Helseth's quest 3 to 7 days later.
- You will be approached by a courier after this time has passed, who will give you a note from Helseth along with 100 gold (which may vanish, see notes). If you can manage to get your reputation with Barenziah to the quest minimum within this three to seven days, or Elysana's quest has just added the remaining reputation for Barenziah, her quest will start as usual. However if you don't manage to get the required reputation before the three to seven days have passed, Helseth's quest, which runs in the background will get terminated and you can no longer get Barenziah's quest.
- This is a very confusing quest construction which can also lead to a scenario where you can meet two different Lord Castellians at the same time, one for Helseth's quest and one for Elysana's. You can do Elysana's quest parallel to Helseth's quest as long as you don't report back to Elysana once you have delivered the robe. Theoretically you could give the robe and Helseth's letter to any of the two Lord Castellians. For the game they are both one and the same entity, but this hasn't been tested.
- In short, the safest way to get Barenziah's quest is to refrain from taking Elysana's quest before Barenziah has summoned you.
- Because of an oversight in the questfile, neither the note nor the gold the courier gives you remain in your inventory once he has left. Due to this, players may never discover what the encounter was all about.
- The above bugs are fixed by third-party patch DFQFIX, along with many more bugged quests. See patch page for details.
After you have accepted this quest, NPCs may say when asked for any news:
- "Lord Castellian is admitting no visitors while on holiday in (town)."
- "The question of succession has been distracting Lord Castellian terribly."
If you fail the quest, NPCs may say when asked for any news:
- "Lord Castellian seems to be favoring Princess Elysana in the succession."
- "The Elder Council seems inclined to uphold the venerable law of succession."
If you successfully complete the quest, NPCs may say when asked for any news:
- "Lord Castellian is constantly in Prince Helseth's company since his holiday."
- "The Elder Council is talking earnestly about eliminating the law of succession."
|Blackmailing Prince Helseth (S0000002)|
|Finishes Quest||Journal Entry|
|0||(Date): Prince Helseth wants me to meet him tomorrow at the Castle for the details of a quest. I will be acting as a courier.|
|1||(Date): Prince Helseth wants me to deliver a letter to Lord Castellian, leader of the elder council of Wayrest, in his holiday manor, (residence) in (town). I have (time limit) days to deliver the letter and return.|
|Prev: Privateer's Hold||Up: Main Quest||Next: Barenziah's Book|