The citizens continue to use the honorific "Captain" because he was the captain of a ship before he retired. He lost his family and is somewhat despondent, although friendly and helpful with advice about things to do in Windhelm.
Belyn Hlaalu, the Dunmer owner of Hlaalu Farm, seems to have a strange obsession with the Captain, for reasons unknown, as indicated during dialogue between him and his maid Adisla. Adisla has a lesser opinion of the captain, saying that he does his job poorly:
Belyn: "So, have you ever actually spoken to Captain Lonely-Gale?"
Adisla: "By the gods, he's just a retired ship's captain."
Belyn: "Maybe to you, but he's just so... his story is..."
The Captain can be conversed with at any time by the Dragonborn.
"The townsfolk call me "Captain" because I used to be a sailor." Who are the prominent citizens in Windhelm? "There's an author named Adonato staying at the inn. He's published a few works of historical fiction. The clans Shatter-Shield and Cruel-Sea see most of the gold that passes through the city. And obviously you have Ulfric, the Jarl and future High King. Oh, and that busybody Viola Giordano. She's got her nose in everyone's business, which I guess is one way of being prominent."' What's there to do in the city? "If you're looking to pass the time, you can give Calixto a few Septims and gawk at whater oddity he's come across lately. If you're in need of goods, there's a market. If it's a soft bed and a hot meal you're after, there's Candlehearth Hall." What kind of captain are you? "Well, nothing. At least not any more. Folk just call me that because of what I used to do. I was a sailor for many a year. I made my coin as a trader, and in time, I bought my own ship. When I retired here in Windhelm, most folk already knew me as Captain Lonely-Gale, and the name just stuck." Folk are talking about murders. "Terrible shame, that. Seems we have a killer on the loose here in Windhelm. He's claimed three victims that I know of, though maybe there's more that haven't been found yet. All lovely ladies, too. Let's hope the guards find that demon soon, and introduce him to the headsman's axe." "Fair winds and calm seas. That's an old sailor's parting."
Niranye: "Captain Lonely-Gale, it's always a pleasure to see you. In fact, I'm glad you're here. There's something I'd like to ask you."
Lonely-Gale: "A pleasure to see you as well, Niranye. What can I do for you?"
Niranye: "I was wondering if you still had many associates in the shipping profession. I have a business proposition for any sailors who might be looking to make a few extra septims."
Lonely-Gale: "If that business proposition includes smuggling, forget it. The sailors I know are plenty good at finding trouble without any help from you."
An old Nord proverbEdit
Viola: "Hello! Captain, can you spare a moment? I heard something the other day I wanted to share with you."
Lonely-Gale: "What did you hear?"
Viola: "It was an old Nord proverb. It said the best way to get over the loss of a lover is to find a new one."
Lonely-Gale: "I didn't lose a lover, Viola; I lost my wife. It's not the same thing."
Viola: "Well, if it works in the one case, why not the other? Don't you want to at least give it a try?"
Viola: "Captain Lonely-Gale, I-I've been looking for you everywhere!"
Lonely-Gale: "And now you've found me. Can I help you?"
Viola: "Have you thought about my invitation?"
Lonely-Gale: "I've thought about it, but I'm not sure it's such a good idea."
Viola: "Oh, I see. Is it still too soon?"
Lonely-Gale: "Yes, I think that must be it. My wife hasn't been gone that long, after all. Ask me again on another day."
Viola: "Captain. Captain!"
Lonely-Gale: "What is it now, Viola?"
Viola: "Did you notice that the snow settles in a different direction near the murder sites?"
Lonely-Gale: "Don't you think all your tramping around there investigating might have something to do with it?"
Viola: "Do you think those Dark Elves had anything to do with the murders? The attacks all happened at night, after all."
Lonely-Gale: "Viola, Dark Elves sleep, just like the rest of us."
Viola: "You wouldn't think it from the racket that Cornerclub makes."
Of Stormcloaks and dragonsEdit
Elda: "Captain, have you heard these stories of dragons?"
Lonely-Gale: "Elda, you know better than to believe every idiot traveler that wanders through."
Elda: "But they're saying that one of them freed Ulfric... that he's in league with them."
Drinking problems awayEdit
Elda: "So what's the news on the street, Captain?"
Lonely-Gale: "The dark elves are uneasy. There's a killer on the streets. And Viola Giordano won't leave me alone."
Elda: "How would you like a drink?"
Lonely-Gale: "Oh, very much so."
- "I made my fortune as a sea captain, but now I'm retired."
- "I lost my family years ago. Truth is, I don't really know what keeps me going."
- The Captain's frustration with Viola can also be seen in this occasional greeting the Dragonborn with "Did Viola send you to bother me?"
- In the Skyrim Strategy Guide, it says that Captain Lonely-Gale is supposed to become Steward to Brunwulf Free-Winter after Windhelm has fallen to Imperial control, although this never happens. Strangely, he also has dialogue lines expressing admiration and support for Ulfric Stormcloak.
- Though it is not acknowledged in-game, Lonely-Gale is indeed in the Steward faction, and will offer unique dialogue after the Battle for Windhelm (i.e. he can be asked why he thinks Brunwulf chose him to be Steward and if he truly believes the war is over), if Jorleif is killed. Even in the normal game, after the Battle of Windhelm, Lonely-Gale will offer friendly dialogue to the Dragonborn, such as "Good to have you by my side, friend, I need reliable people around."
- Despite being a resident of Windhelm, Captain Lonely-Gale does not possess a home; he stays at Candlehearth Hall during night hours.