Online:The Toothmaul Ploy

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Quick Summary: written by The Silencer, Moinante, Jeancey, Enodoc, Likelolwhat, Timeoin, not checked

Walkthrough: written by Vyraesi, Varana, Ohsnapzzz, Talyyn, not checked

Quest Stages: written by HotnBOThered, Talyyn, not checked

Figure out what is going on in Toothmaul Gully.
Zone: Auridon
Objective: Toothmaul Gully
Quest Giver: Pirondil
Location(s): Toothmaul Gully
Concurrent Quest: Well-Armed Savages
Reward: Battered Bear Trap
Average Leveled Gold
XP Gain: Standard Experience
Discover why the Veiled Heritance are interested in these caves
I stumbled onto an investigator named Pirondil being threatened by an unknown Altmer assailant in a Goblin cave. He's enlisted me to help get to the bottom of the situation.

Quick Walkthrough[edit]

  1. Talk to Pirondil.
  2. Investigate the goblins.
  3. Retrieve the evidence.
  4. Confront the chief of the goblins.
  5. Decide the fate of the tribe.

Detailed Walkthrough[edit]

Combat Interruptus[edit]

As you enter the cave, you will interrupt an Altmer woman ambushing a Dominion soldier.

Pirondil: "Easy, just put the sword down."
Nelanya: "Quiet! How many more of you are there?"'
Pirondil: "You're Veiled Heritance, aren't you? I should ask you the same thing."

Startled by your sudden presence, she runs off further down the cave. Approach the soldier and he will give you his thanks:

"Good timing. You saved my neck, whether you meant to or not."
What's going on here?
"I'm called Pirondil, an investigator for the First Auridon Marines. I spotted a Goblin sneaking into this cave... it was wearing Elven armor. I followed it, but I was ambushed by that woman."
You think she has something to do with the Goblins?
"Maybe, but I prefer facts to speculation. I don't know who she is or why she is in a Goblin cave, but I'm not prepared to go in there alone. You willing to help the investigation? I'm going to set up a signal fire outside."
Sure, I can help out. I'll see what I can find.
"Watch your back in here. The goblins are well-armed for their breed"

The quest will now start and be added to your quest journal. You can then choose the Goodbye dialogue option to move on or select I have a few questions to learn more about the gully and its goblin residents.

Funny Byziness[edit]

A friendly goblin may have information

Continue down the path to a very damp cave. In the middle of the room, surprisingly, is an unarmed friendly Goblin named Byz who is cowering in your presence. Perhaps he can assist with your investigation.

"Please" Byz is small and only sweeps! Do not hurt Byz!"
You can talk?
"Elf is Nelanya! She makes deal with Toothmaul tribe, weapons and armor for help! She even give... what is word... contract! Yes! Elf kings and lords have to accept deal!"
Where is this contract?
"Contract is in dens, down tunnel. Byz will wait by chief's den! You will see! Byz tell truth!"
I will look for this contract and find you by the chief's den.
"Byz will not scream for help. Byz promises."

After speaking with Byz, you will need to traverse the caverns to reach the smaller cave in the southwest corner of the map. There on a table, you will find The Toothmaul Contract. You will also find a bound Jilan-dar and can start Well-Armed Savages from him.

Chief Concern[edit]

Your allies have met

Once you have the contract, you will need to head northeast across the large cavern to where the Chief and hopefully Byz will be waiting. Outside the Chief's Den, your new friends have become acquainted with each other — and not in a good way. Pirondil is very aggressive towards your goblin chum.

Pirondil: "If you so much as squawk, I will fill you full of arrows."

Speak to Pirondil to tell him what you've learned, and what you should do next.

"Good, you're here. I found this little runt snooping about. I was just about to put him out of his misery."
Stop. The Goblin directed me to find a contract. You'll want to look at this."
"Let me see that. This doesn't even make sense. I can't think of a court in the land that would take this seriously. The wording isn't even in the Goblins' favor. They think this is going to buy them some sort of status?"
The Goblins probably don't know that."
"Make no mistake, they are still Goblins. Still, if we can break up the alliance here and now, it will save us much grief."'
Maybe the chief can be reasoned with. Byz here can let him know I come in peace.
"Magnanimous of you. I'll leave you to it then, and then go to see if the signal fire brought in any backup. Break up this alliance and find this Nelyana person. See if she likes being threatened with sharp objects."
I'll find you at the entrance once I've dealt with the situation.

The duo will then go their, separate ways, Pirondil to the entrance and Byz will enter the Chief's Chamber to announce you.

Byz: "Byz go tell chief you want talk."
Negotiate with the Chief

Enter the chamber, where Chief Koth is waiting inside to talk.

"Byz say you want talk. Talk."
You must be Koth, the Toothmaul chief.
"Koth is Koth. Pup tell Koth you want speak. Speak."'
The contract Nelanya made with your people was a lie.
"All Elves lie! Trick! Elf said there would be trick, but she lie, too. Why trust you?"'
Because I chose to talk instead of fighting.
"Tired of Elf-speak. All lies! Not want any of you, just to be left alone.
Here. Key to Elf cave. You kill or not kill her as you want. Koth is done with this mess."
Thank you. I'll deal with the Elf.

He will have handed you Nelanya's Chamber Key.

Nel Where to Run[edit]

Confront Nelanya

Nelanya's Retreat is just north of the Chief's Den. Compared to the rest of the dank cave, it is luxurious; filled with fine Altmer furniture and furnishings. Nelyana stands in the room, awaiting your arrival.

"Hear me out. I've no wish to battle you today."
You must be Nelanya. Is this some kind of trick?
"No, no tricks. You've cleary been able to sneak by or butcher every Goblin between the entrance and this room, so I don't fancy my chances in a straight up fight. I'd rather talk this out. That is, if you can restrain yourself."

Here you will have two options. I'll hear you out will let Nelanya tell her story, while No deal. It's too risky to leave you alive will have you kill her instead. Choose wisely, as the dialogue option is irreversible without abandoning and restarting the quest.

If you picked I'll hear you out Nelanya will explain her circumstances to being here. At any point during the conversation you can select the It's too risky to leave you alive option and immediately start combat.

"Courteous of you. My terms are simple. In exchange for my life, I shall quit this cave and leave the Goblins whatever fate you and your Dominion compatriot deem proper. You're even welcome to whatever spoils you find."
Why were you deceiving those Goblins?
"They were willing and able dupes. From the perspective of many in the Veiled Heritance, we're already losing. It was easy to agitate the Goblins against their former masters. We are willing to use whatever necessary to even the field."
And you think you should be spared despite this?
"What's the use in dying for this? I don't fancy my chances against you, and the Toothmaul aren't as useful as I expected them to be. No sense continuing the charade."
Get out and don't come back. <Spare her.>

Conversation ends and Nelanya leaves the cave.

Nelanya: "Don't worry. You won't see me again if I can help it."
No deal. It's too risky to leave you alive. <Kill her.>

Nelanya becomes hostile.

Nelanya: "Wait, I-"

Whatever turn of events happens, return to Pirondil at the cave entrance. Several Auridon Marines reinforcements have arrived, thanks to the signal fire Pirondil lit earlier. If Nelanya was spared, he will say:

"Reinforcements at last! How did you do?"
The bargain with the Toothmaul tribe is void. Nelanya was driven off.
"Driven off?" You mean she's not dead? I hope you know what you're doing. We'll oversee the Goblins from here. Their continued cooperation will ensure that they are spared."'
Complete Quest.
We'll take charge from here. With any luck, we can relocate Koth and his tribe somewhere that they don't call any more trouble. If not, well... Goblins should remember their place."

Alternately, if Nelanya is killed, he will say:

"Excellent work, I knew I could count on you. With the reinforcements here, we can see to the Goblins as peacefully as we can. There will be restictions, of course, but their willingness to stay out of the fighting may well save them."

Regardless of your choice, Pirondil will reward you with the Battered Bear Trap memento and a leveled amount of gold. If Well-Armed Savages has been completed, then this will mark the dungeon as complete.


  • Byz and the journal behind him won't exist in the cave before starting the quest.
  • The Toothmaul Contract node won't exist in the cave before starting the quest or reaching the related objective.
  • While the Chief's Den can be accessed beforehand, Chief Koth won't exist inside before starting the quest or reaching the related objective.

Quest Stages[edit]

The Toothmaul Ploy
Finishes Quest Journal Entry
I need to investigate the Goblin cave and see if I find any clues.
Objective: Investigate the Gully
I've come upon a cowering Goblin. Perhaps it can help me find out about what is happening here.
Objective: Talk to Byz
Byz has suggested I search the Goblin dens for the contract between the Toothmaul tribe and the Altmeri woman known as Nelanya.
Objective: Find Evidence of Nelanya's Bargain
I need to find Byz again. He mentioned he would be near the chief's den.
Objective: Find Byz
Pirondil is here threatening Byz. I should have words with him.
Objective: Talk to Pirondil
I'm going to try to speak with the Goblin chief, Koth. Perhaps I can convince him that Nelanya's contract is not in his tribe's best interests.
Objective: Talk to Chief Koth
Koth has seen reason and given me the key to Nelanya's sealed chamber. I can confront her and end the threat she poses to Auridon.
Objective: Confront Nelanya
Finishes quest☑ The Toothmaul Goblins have renounced their alliance with the Veiled Heritance. I should find Pirondil back at the entrance to Toothmaul Gully.
Objective: Talk to Pirondil
* 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.