|Blood on the Ice|
|Quest Giver||Windhelm Guard|
|Prerequisite||Visit Windhelm at night.|
|Reward||Necromancer Amulet |
This is a multi-step quest which begins in Windhelm. It entails discovering the identity of a serial killer that has killed at least three young women by the time Windhelm is entered by the Dragonborn.
The body of the latest victim is in the cemetery, and the quest is activated when the nearby Windhelm guard is queried. There are alternative paths through the quest, so following the quest markers exactly may not be optimum.
There isn't really any forensic reasoning involved; common sense will suffice for the initial portion. The warning about alternate routes through the quest should alert the player to question some early conclusions the various dialogue options seem to force. The walkthrough below gives the details.
The biggest "reward" from this quest is related to the Strange Amulet. If you're going to go through all the hassle, make sure not to bypass that section if you like more magicka available to you.
Initiating the questEdit
To initiate this quest, the Dragonborn must travel to Windhelm at around midnight. If the Dark Brotherhood questline has been started or completed, it could hinder the possibilities of starting this quest.If this happens and murder scene doesn't appear, killing Grelod the Kind will cure this issue.
- In the graveyard, there will be several people gathered around a female corpse. The guard will approach the Dragonborn and start a conversation that leads to the initiation of the quest. To get to the graveyard, one should turn left at the entrance to the city, go through the archway, make the first right and go down the steps behind the Blacksmith.
- After questioning the three nearby witnesses, the Dragonborn should talk to the guard again.
- In order to be granted permission to help the investigation, the Dragonborn must visit Jorleif, and then return to the guard.
- Inside the Hall of the Dead, the Dragonborn should speak with Helgird.
- If the Key to Hjerim (purchased or pickpocketed) is in the possession of the player, the house can be entered to skip to step 9; otherwise, following the trail of blood in the crime scene will lead to Hjerim.
- Advice should be sought by speaking to Jorleif.
- Entering the house can be done by picking the lock or receiving a key from the Tova Shatter-Shield, Friga Shatter-Shield's mother.
- All of the furniture that can be investigated should be.
- The Butcher's Journal #1 from the bloody chest up against the wall on the left of the entrance should be taken. The wardrobe on the right in the northwest room of the house will have a hidden door leading to an altar.
- From the altar, Butcher Journal #2 can be found.
- The Strange Amulet and pamphlets from the small dresser just next to the secret door should also be acquired. The amulet is hidden under the pamphlets.
- Jorleif will provide the player with information, suggesting to talk to Calixto Corrium (once you have the amulet) and Viola Giordano.
- The Strange Amulet can be shown, and eventually sold, to Calixto Corrium. He will inform the Dragonborn that it belongs to the court mage. The amulet is needed in order to accuse the court wizard, although it is recommended to sell it or it will remain in the inventory indefinitely after the quest is completed.
- Viola Giordano is often found in Candlehearth Hall. She can't be talked to unless a copy of the "Beware the Butcher" pamphlet is in possession, or if she's dead or missing. If the journal has been picked up before talking to her in the house, it can be dropped and picked back up in front of her to continue the accusation quest line.
At this point, the player can complete this quest in one of two ways:
Accusing the mageEdit
- Returning to Jorleif will end the quest, accusing the court mage of the murders.
- Waiting three days outside of Windhelm will make a body appear outside Candlehearth Hall, reopening the case and start the second part the quest, "Catch the Killer". If you are maximum level waiting 3 days will NOT work, instead, you will have to visit the court mage in the barracks jail (see bugs).
Catching the killerEdit
- Rather than going to Jorleif, you can choose to talk to Wuunferth the Unliving, the court mage, directly. Accusing him of practicing necromancy will cause him to deny the accusation, telling the Dragonborn that the amulet and journals are not his. He will then direct the player to where the killer will strike next.
- As soon as the marketplace area is visited (right by the White Phial shop; the map indicator will be a little misleading) in the stone quarter after dark, as Wuunferth suggests, Calixto will be seen about to murder Arivanya (alternatively, if the Dragonborn has married a woman in Windhelm, Calixto will attempt to murder her). He can be stopped.
- Alternatively, instead of stopping Calixto in the marketplace, if he is witnessed successfully carrying out this murder, he will run off into the night. The quest tracker will then lead back to Hjerim, where the killer lies in wait and will attack immediately upon entering. If the player is fast enough, they can catch up to Calixto and strike him down, with no added bounty.
- Returning to Jorleif and telling him that the killer has been caught completes the quest.
If the amulet has been sold to Calixto earlier, it can be looted back after killing him. It turns out to be the fabled Necromancer's Amulet. It grants +50 Magicka, Fortify Conjuration 25%, and reduces Health and Stamina regeneration by 75%.
- If the Dragonborn is part of the Dark Brotherhood, and completes the quest 'Mourning Never Comes', killing Nilsine, Tova will be dead on the floor next to a suicide note in her house. Instead of talking to her, the player can just take the key to Hjerim off her dead body.
- After killing Calixto and obtaining the key from his body, the Dragonborn can go in his house. Upstairs in Calixto's chest another Butcher's journal can be found. It tells about the reason of all the killing.
- Oddly, if you pickpocket the key while Calixto is alive, and steal the journal, that is not enough to get him arrested.
- When visiting Calixto Corrium (quest step 11), it is possible to sell him the Necromancer's Amulet and then pickpocket the amulet in order to then sell it back. Each successful attempt is rewarded with 500 gold and a high Pickpocket experience (no Pickpocket perks are required). Once Calixto's shop is left, it will remain open for the rest of that day, but will lock and stay locked (Master) from then on. He will not be in there ever again. This only works for one day. You can also loot the key off his dead body after killing him.
- If you approach the Windhelm Guard with your weapon drawn, the Guard will suspect you of being the killer. However, proclaiming your innocence will be enough to convince them.
- This quest may be a reference to the Victorian murderer Jack The Ripper.
- If the corpse is turned into a pile of ashes at the start (using a Raise the Dead Spell), it will "reassemble" back into the regular body when Helgrid takes it into the Hall of the Dead.