|Home Town||Tel Mithryn|
|House||Tel Mithryn Steward's House|
|Primary Skills||Alchemy, Destruction, Enchanting|
|Faction(s)||DLC2PillarBuilderFaction; DLC2CrimeRavenRockFaction; Tel Mithryn Faction|
Varona Nelas is a Dunmer farmer living in the small settlement of Tel Mithryn who has the questionable honor of being personal steward to town founder Neloth. Like the other residents, she is overworked and estranged by her employer's eccentric personality and wishes herself far away. However, she is soon going to Raven Rock to pick up supplies, leading to her early demise and the quest Reluctant Steward.
Varona will die (see notes) after you visit Tel Mithryn for the first time, so a few steps must be followed to see her daily routine and witness the many conversations between her and the other inhabitants. First, you must not leave Tel Mithryn; second, you will have to complete From the Ashes before she dares venturing outside. After that, her daily routine is a busy one: She starts the day at 6am and paces around her quarters for two hours. At 8am she visits Elynea Mothren in the local Apothecary, at 9am she visits the cook Ulves Romoran in the Tel Mithryn Kitchen, at 10am she paces around outside, at 11am she checks up on Master Neloth in the tower, then she heads back to her quarters for a one-hour lunch. At 1pm she paces around outside, at 2pm she visits Elynea, at 3pm she visits Ulves, and at 4pm she once again spends an hour outside. At 5pm she checks up on Neloth before going home for a one-hour dinner. At 7pm she makes one last visit to Elynea and then takes the rest of the evening off. Before the Sun Stone is cleansed she was supposed to work on the shrine between 10pm and 6am but doesn't due to a bug.
When you first pay a visit to Tel Mithryn, you will find Varona in the center of the settlement engaged in conversation with Talvas Fathryon. Varona is obviously concerned about Talvas' conjuration experiments and countless attempts to summon an ash guardian, and she will try to get Talvas to act responsibly, with little luck. The dialogue will differ slightly if Neloth is in Raven Rock as part of the quest Dragonborn.
Varona: "Why are you out here? Aren't you supposed to be in the tower assisting Master Neloth?" OR "Why are you out here? Master Neloth is away. Aren't you supposed to stay in the tower?"
Talvas; "If you must know, I'm trying to get this Ash Guardian spell to work. Now let me concentrate. Besides, shouldn't you be worrying about the damage to the tower?"
Varona: "Master Neloth has tasked Elynea with repairing the tower. Why aren't you doing this in the lab, where it would be safer for all of us?"
Talvas: "The, uh... the lab is too small. Also, I need the ashy soil. Master Neloth knows what I'm doing. No need to bother him about it though. He's quite busy at the moment." OR "The, uh... the lab is too small. Also, I need the ashy soil. Master Neloth told me to practice this spell while he's away. No need to tell him about it when he gets back. He knows all about this."
Varona: "It's on your head if something goes wrong. Just let me get back inside first."
As promised, Varona will then enter her quarters and will not come out until you have completed the quest From the Ashes. When everything is safe and Talvas has taken his spot inside the tower, she will start her daily routine.
She will be the first to welcome you to Tel Mithryn and provide a wealth of information on the strange settlement: "We don't get many visitors. Is there something you need?" When you ask her to explain the strange settlement she will say: "Tel Mithryn. It's the home of Master Neloth. You may have heard of him. He's a famous Telvanni wizard." If Neloth is in Raven Rock she will add: "He's not here right now. I think he's in Raven Rock." Point out that Neloth obviously lives in a giant mushroom and she will elaborate on Morrowind architecture: "In Morrowind, the Telvanni grow buildings from special fungus spores. Master Neloth grew one here to be his home. Don't ask me how." When asked if she is Neloth's apprentice, she will tell you: "No. Talvas is his apprentice. I'm his steward. I manage the day to day affairs of Tel Mithryn." You can also ask her to provide a full list of the inhabitants of Tel Mithryn: "Talvas is Master Neloth's apprentice. If you are interested in spells, he might be willing to sell you some. Elynea is our alchemist. She specializes in mushrooms and other types of fungus. Ulves runs the kitchens."
When you approach her, she may comment on the dragon threat in Skyrim with: "There are rumors of dragons on the mainland. I hope they don't show up here." She may also show disdain about Solstheim: "I hate this ash. It gets into everything." She may also say: "Talvas says Master Neloth is asking for me.", often followed up with: "I hope Elynea has something for headaches." Lastly, she will mention her upcoming trip to Raven Rock: "I'm going to have to go to Raven Rock soon. We're running low on some things." and "I'd better check on Ulves. The kitchen supplies were getting low."
Once Varona heads off to Raven Rock to stock up on supplies, Neloth will notice her absence and start to complain: "Have you seen Varona? I'm hungry." He will then task you with finding her: "Well find her. Tell her I want apple cabbage stew, with some canis root tea." and will keep reminding you: "Have you found Varona yet? I could really use some tea." When asked about Varona's whereabouts, Talvas will say: "Ask Elynea. She and Varona seem to be quite friendly." When asked, Elynea will tell you: "She left for Raven Rock hours ago. She promised to bring me back some fresh blisterwort." and will assure you: "Varona goes to Raven Rock all the time. I'm sure she's fine.", while the chef in the Tel Mithryn Kitchen will concur: "Is it tea time already? Well, Neloth's just going to have to wait. Varona went to Raven Rock to arrange for supplies." However, he will be concerned about the dangerous trip: "The Raven Rock road is dangerous. I hope nothing happened to Varona." When confronted with the news, Neloth will just comment: "I don't care where she is. Go get her.my tea better be hot." When you leave he will keep complaining: "Everything that can go wrong is going wrong. Ash spawn attacks, my house, and even my steward is assassinated."
Varona never made it to Raven Rock, as you will find her dead body on top of a hill near the silt strider, still surrounded by the ash spawn that killed her. Back in Tel Mithryn, Neloth will be his typical self and will respond differently depending on when you found the body. If you found her after he gave you the task, he will say: "Dead? Well that's annoying. How did she die?" If you found her body prior to him giving you the quest he will comment: "What! Who's going to make my tea? Why do these things always happen to me?" After the quest is completed, the insensitive wizard will only remark: "Where is that lazy steward of mine? Varona! No, wait. She's dead. Drovas!" while the other residents may say: "It's a shame about Varona." and "I can't believe Varona is dead."
The new steward, Drovas, will also have a conversation with Elynea about Varona:
Elynea: "I miss Varona. She used to help me with the gardening."
Drovas: "I can't help it if I have a black thumb. It's like the mushrooms hate me."
Elynea: "It's not your fault, Drovas. You do other things well. Varona was never able to do the repair work that you do."
Drovas: "Thank you. I didn't mean to be so defensive. I know Varona was your friend. It's okay to miss her."
- When you arrive in Tel Mithryn for the first time you will find Varona arguing with Talvas Fathyron. She will then seek you out and engage in conversation. This actually marks the beginning of her death as speaking to her will cause her to die the next time you leave Tel Mithryn (going to the Sun Stone is enough to kill her), marking the start of the quest Reluctant Steward.
- Another Varona Nelas was encountered in Morrowind. While they share the name and a loose affiliation with House Telvanni, Varona's conversations with Elynea suggest that Varona has been on Solstheim her entire life, while the Varona from Morrowind is found on Vvardenfell, confirming they are not the same person.
- Before the Sun Stone has been cleansed, Varona was supposed to work there every night between 10pm and 6am. Due to a developer oversight, her default (sandbox) package takes precedence and the work package never activates. This also means that her "wake-up" line will never be heard: "Who brought me here? I demand to know who did this! I've got to get back. Tel Mithryn is probably falling apart."
- The zones activating Varona's scripted death are placed in very close vicinity of Tel Mithryn, making it possible to actually see her die.
- Sometimes Varona's body will show up without clothes.
Talvas: "Master Neloth is going to be casting some rather loud spells in the next day or two. You should warn the others. Oh, and if the tower door suddenly gets icy cold, don't come in."
Varona: "That man is going to kill himself one day, and take the rest of us with him. Thanks for the warning."
Talvas: "I don't want to see any of you get hurt. Oh, could you get me an extra blanket. I think I might need it."
Varona: "How are your lessons coming, Talvas?"
Talvas: "The pain has subsided. Thank you for asking. Hopefully the frost lessons are over."
Varona: "I hope it's worth it."
Talvas: "Neloth is a master wizard of the House Telvanni. I've already learned more than I would have in twice the time at the College of Winterhold."
Varona: "And suffered twice as much."
Neloth: "Varona, get me some canis root tea. Oh, and remind Elynea that she needs to fix my tower. That chamber has been withered for too long."
Varona: "You have some tea, but I'll get you a fresh cup. Elynea is waiting for fresh taproot before she can regrow that chamber."
Neloth: "Taproot? That's all? Add it to the Raven Rock list."
Varona: "I already did, but it won't do any good. They haven't had any for months."
Varona: "Master Neloth, I'm preparing for a trip to Raven Rock to pick up supplies. I have your list of soul gems, but nothing else."
Neloth: "Hmm? Oh. Raven Rock. Right. I need soul gems..."
Varona: "I know that. What else?"
Neloth: "Maybe some daedra heart. Elynea never seems to stock it. Let me get you the rest of the list tomorrow. I'm just too busy to think about this right now."
Varona: "That's what you said yesterday! I really can't put this trip off for much longer."
Varona: "Where is your list of things you need from Raven Rock?"
Ulves: "I would have had it ready, but Master Neloth wanted his meal early."
Varona: "Well I can't wait forever. Master Neloth keeps asking if I have his soul gems yet."
Ulves: "Well you'll just have to wait. Last time I brought his meal up late he asked if I wanted to be a part of one of his experiments."
Ulves: "If you're here about the canis root tea, it's almost ready."
Varona: "I don't know how he drinks that stuff."
Ulves: "At least you don't have to taste every time to see if it's brewed right."
Varona: "I'm sick of all this ash. I know
Elynea: "It's a good thing you've always lived here on Solstheim. Vvardenfell is covered in ash. Red Mountain makes sure of that."
Varona: "So you've said a hundred times. But didn't you also tell me the Telvanni lands were green and lush?"
Elynea: "Maybe two hundred years ago they were. Now they say those green lands are ash covered too."
Elynea: "Are you going to Raven Rock soon? I need
Varona: "Soon. Be patient. Ulves is still making his list. And of course Master Neloth keeps adding to his. What with all the ash spawn on the road these days, I'm not leaving until the trip is worth it."
Elynea: "Bah! Patience is for the young. An old like me can't afford it."