Skyrim:Whispers in the Dark

The UESPWiki – Your source for The Elder Scrolls since 1995
Jump to: navigation, search
This page is currently being rewritten as part of the Skyrim Quest Redesign Project.
The page is being rewritten and checked in several stages. All users are welcome to make changes to the page. If you make a change that is relevant to the project, please update this template accordingly, and make sure you have observed the project guidelines.
Walkthrough: written by Beezer1029, not checked
Reward: written by Baron, checked by Kiz
SR-qico-Dark Brotherhood.png
Spy on the Night Mother's keeper to see if he is planning sabotage against the Brotherhood.
Quest Giver: Astrid
Location(s): Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary
Prerequisite Quest: Mourning Never Comes
Next Quest: Kill Narfi, Kill Beitild, Kill Ennodius Papius, Kill Hern and/or Kill Lurbuk, followed by The Silence Has Been Broken
Reward: None
ID: DB04
The Night Mother

Quick Walkthrough[edit]

  1. Hide in the Night Mother's coffin and listen to Cicero.
  2. Step out and confront Cicero and Astrid.
  3. Take contracts from Nazir.

Detailed Walkthrough[edit]

Secret Agent[edit]

After returning from your assassination mission in Mourning Never Comes, Astrid will confide that she needs help with a matter of a somewhat more personal nature. She confesses that she is a little concerned about the Night Mother's Keeper, Cicero. The strange and erratic jester has been locking himself in the chamber with the Night Mother's coffin and frantically whispering to someone. Astrid fears a conspiracy and asks you to spy on Cicero to see what he is up to. However, in order to effectively eavesdrop and not be detected she asks you to hide in the coffin with the Night Mother's corpse. You can state your objections or remain silent at this strange directive, but in either case, make your way to the chamber to make yourself cozy with the Night Mother.

The Night Mother speaks

You can talk to the other Dark Brotherhood members about Astrid's conspiracy theory. You can tell them: "Astrid thinks a Family member may be conspiring with Cicero."

They all answer differently:

Arnbjorn: "She said that? If I find anyone working against my wife, or this Sanctuary, I'll beat them to death with their own severed head. Of course, they'd probably already be dead... But you know what I mean!"

Babette: "Oh! Well, I hope she doesn't suspect me. I mean, I've spoken with Cicero a bit, and he's quite charming. But I'd never go against Astrid. Never."

Festus Krex: " Ha! And would that surprise anyone? This Sanctuary's a mess. Wouldn't surprise me if somebody's talking to the fool on the sly. Making deals. And no, before you ask, it's not me. I know which side my bread is buttered on."

Gabriella: "To what end? Usurping Astrid's authority as leader of the Sanctuary? Hmmm... Yes, I can see her concern. Thank you for bringing this to my attention."

Nazir: "Does she? Listen, brother/sister... Astrid is my mistress, and I worship the ground she walks on. But this Cicero business has her a bit... paranoid."

Veezara: "You're joking. While I can understand if some family members wish to honor the Old Ways once more, surely no one would oppose Astrid's rule."

There is no option for asking Cicero, as this would ruin Astrid's plan.

Listen to Your Mother[edit]

You will need to pick the novice lock on the Night Mother's coffin, then step inside. The scene fades to black and you will soon hear Cicero begin to address someone. He pleads for his companion to speak, and complains that he must do all the work, but is ever obedient. Suddenly, you will see the Night Mother in the coffin with you; she begins to speak and you realize that she pities Cicero. He has been attempting to communicate with the Night Mother all along, however the Night Mother refuses to speak to Cicero because he is not the Listener. Outside the coffin, Cicero despairs of the Night Mother actually speaking to anyone, and at his failure at finding a Listener. Again, the Night Mother addresses you. She names you Listener and tasks you with traveling to Volunruud and speaking with Amaund Motierre. She instructs you to tell Cicero a covert phrase: "Darkness rises when silence dies".

Darkness Rises When Silence Dies[edit]

The coffin opens and as you step out, a horrified Cicero demands an explanation. Tell him you are "the one", but he refuses to believe you. Tell him the signal phrase the Night Mother gave you and Cicero becomes ecstatic and dances a little jig. Astrid will burst into the room, alerted by the commotion. She comes to realize that there is no treachery or traitor, but is a little put-off by your assertion that you are now the Listener. When you explain what the Night Mother has asked of you, Astrid becomes defensive claiming, "I'm still the leader in this family". Astrid needs time to process all of this and sends you to take a contract from Nazir, rather than allowing you to go Volunruud, while she thinks about this turn of events. If you have already completed the first three contracts Nazir gave you then he will give you two new contracts, Kill Hern and Kill Lurbuk. If you have not completed the initial contracts, then Nazir will complain that you still have contracts to complete and urge you to get on with them. In either case, this quest will complete upon speaking with Nazir.


  • Should you choose to disregard Astrid's orders and proceed to Volunruud on your own, you will be able to receive the contract but not act on it until killing at least one of the Nazir's contract targets. You must kill at least one contract target after completing this quest and then return to the sanctuary in order to start The Silence Has Been Broken, which will start when Astrid talks to you (before you collect your pay from Nazir).


  • If you close the iron door you open to enter the room and enter the tomb, Cicero cannot walk into the room and attempt to speak to the Night Mother, leaving you inside the tomb in mid cut-scene.
    • If you wait an hour in the coffin, Cicero will be placed in the room and the quest will go on as normal.
    • On PC Open the console, enter prid 00080E17, then enter in unlock. After that, close the console and wait an hour. The quest will continue as normal after that.
  • When Astrid tells you to go talk to Nazir for more side contracts, Nazir may not have any quest options available. This is possibly caused by the targets from Nazir's next contract having already been killed. ?
    • On PC Entering setstage DB04 200 in the console fixes this. This will complete the Whispers in the Dark quest and allow you to get the next quest from Astrid. The only thing you will have missed are the two contracts Nazir gives.
    • Deactivate the quest while inside the Sanctuary, exit to the outside, and reactivate the quest. Proceed to follow through with the quest as normal and the bug should be fixed.
    • Skip straight to Volunruud and speak with Amaund Motierre to receive the quest The Silence Has Been Broken. The quest journal will not update and no dialogue options will be given but the quest can be completed via following the walkthrough. The only thing you will have missed are the two contracts Nazir gives and any dialogue.[verification needed — This worked for PS3-does it work for PC and Xbox as well?]

Quest Stages[edit]

Whispers in the Dark (DB04)
Stage Finishes Quest Journal Entry
10 Astrid has heard Cicero speaking with someone, in whispered tones, in the chamber of the Night Mother. She fears they're conspiring against the Sanctuary, and wants me to eavesdrop on the conversation. I'm to sneak into the chamber, and hide in the coffin of the Night Mother.
Objective 10: Hide in the Night Mother's coffin
Objective 20: Eavesdrop on Cicero
Objective 30: Talk to Cicero
Objective 40: Talk to Astrid
50 While eavesdropping on Cicero, I heard the voice of the Night Mother, who named me Listener. Astrid seems unsure what to believe, and needs time to process this latest development. In the meantime, I'm to see Nazir for more side contract work.
Objective 50: Receive a side contract from Nazir
200 Finishes quest☑ While eavesdropping on Cicero, I heard the voice of the Night Mother, who named me Listener. Astrid seems unsure what to believe, and it's hard to tell what effect this will ultimately have on the Sanctuary.
  • The following empty quest stages were omitted from the table: 0, 1, 255.
  • Any text displayed in angle brackets (e.g., <Alias=LocationHold>) is dynamically set by the Radiant Quest system, 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.
  • If an entry is marked as "Finishes Quest" it means the quest disappears from the Active Quest list, but you may still receive new entries for that quest.
  • On the PC, it is possible to use the console to advance through the quest by entering setstage DB04 stage, where stage is the number of the stage you wish to complete. It is not possible to un-complete (i.e. go back) quest stages, but it is possible to clear all stages of the quest using resetquest DB04.
Prev: Mourning Never Comes Up: Dark Brotherhood Next: Kill Narfi, Kill Beitild, Kill Ennodius Papius, Kill Hern and/or Kill Lurbuk, followed by The Silence Has Been Broken