This quest begins after completing "Innocence Lost" and starting "With Friends Like These...," the Dragonborn is captured during their sleep by an assassin of the Dark Brotherhood and brought to an abandoned shack, where they are ordered to kill one of three captives therein. Killing Astrid instead will fail "With Friends Like These..." and begin this quest.
Report Astrid's deathEdit
After killing Astrid, the Dragonborn will be directed to report to any guard with the information that they have killed a Dark Brotherhood assassin (The closest guards may be found in Morthal, south of the shack). The guard will tell them to report to Commander Maro, who resides at the Penitus Oculatus Outpost in Dragon Bridge.
Maro says that he has been tracking the Dark Brotherhood and waiting for an opportunity to attack. On hearing news of the death of their leader, he tasks the Dragonborn with infiltrating the Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary, using the password his agents recently acquired, and slaying every assassin inside.
Kill everyone in the Sanctuary!Edit
The assassins can be powerful, and collectively possess a range of attacks that make fighting several of them together in the cramped space fairly difficult. Ironically, although they're assassins, it is particularly easy to sneak up on them. The use of bows, invisibility and poisons are effective ways to take care of them.
Report back to Commander MaroEdit
When the job is done, the Dragonborn must report back to Commander Maro to complete the quest and collect the reward of 3,000. Once the quest is complete, the Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary will remain accessible and undamaged, in contrast to finishing the Dark Brotherhood quest line when most of it is destroyed.
Found within the sanctuary:
- The word wall for the Marked for Death shout
- Sacred Witness — Sneak skill book (on a table on a bedroom along the northeast wall of the cavern near the room with the stained glass window)
- Sithis — Alteration skill book (on a pedestal near a book shelf in the first room)
- One of the Stones of Barenziah
Found as loot:
- Blade of Woe (Looted from Astrid)
- Several incomplete sets of Shrouded Armor (Looted from the assassins and one complete looted from Astrid)
- A complete set of the Shrouded Outfit (Looted from Gabriella, and an incomplete set from Festus Krex)
I have killed Astrid, the leader of the Dark Brotherhood. I should report her death to a guard.
I've spoken to a guard about Astrid's death. He told me I should share this information with Commander Maro, in the village of Dragon Bridge.
Commander Maro has tasked me with killing every assassin in the Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary! He has provided me with the pass phrase that will allow me to enter.
I have killed every assassin in the Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary. I should now report back to Commander Maro.
After killing Astrid, the leader of the Dark Brotherhood, I was commissioned by Commander Maro to wipe out the assassins' Sanctuary. I did so, and was rewarded for my efforts. Of course, it will now be impossible for me to join the shadowy organization...
- Completing the Dark Brotherhood questline, plus all of the additional assassinations that Nazir has to offer, yields 20,000, while destroying the Brotherhood earns only 3,000. Other quest rewards, such as Muiri's marriage option, Shadowmere, the set of Ancient Shrouded Armor, the Summon Spectral Assassin power, access to the Dawnstar Sanctuary and the Dark Brotherhood Initiates likewise, will all be forfeited.
- The total amount of coinage that most players will achieve through the Dark Brotherhood questline - including 20,000 , will range anywhere from around 29,000 - 34,000. Along with the side contracts that Nazir offers, and other missions, such as "Mourning Never Comes.".
- After killing Astrid, the three captives can be freed, though they can also be killed with no consequences for their Execution Hoods.
- Completing this quest is the fastest way to get the Blade of Woe from Astrid.
- Cicero and Babette are not present in the Sanctuary, thus they are not killed, although, they are not seen again.
- Guards can be heard saying afterwards, "I could've gone into that sanctuary and killed all those Dark Brotherhood types, but I was... sick that day." or "You...You destroyed the Dark Brotherhood. Friend, I owe you a drink."
- When the Dragonborn reports Astrid's death to a guard, despite not possesing that information, they will say "I killed the leader of the Dark Brotherhood." This may be explained by the fact that there are a few hidden clues in-game, as to her position in the brotherhood: If the Dragonborn survives an attack by a Dark Brotherhood Assassin, it will yield a note signed by Astrid, which gives some clue. Likewise, if the Dragonborn breaks into the room in the Black-Briar Manor basement where Maven Black-Briar keeps an effigy, there is a note addressed to Astrid, which further implies her leadership of the Brotherhood.
- After the Brotherhood has been eliminated, there will be no more random encounters possible of Dark Brotherhood assassins to kill the Dragonborn.
- Astrid wields the Blade of Woe, which can quickly sap health.
- When reporting Astrid's demise to Commander Maro, one enters the usual conversation (i.e., a menu with dialogue options). However, when reporting back, one does not enter into any conversation, Maro simply talks to them.
- Completing the quest will cause Commander Maro to consider the player character a friend, and he may also appear at the Dragonborn's wedding.
- There is a very similar quest that starts The Elder Scrolls III: Tribunal, called "Hunt the Dark Brotherhood."
Questline restoration via console commandsEdit
It is possible to reverse the actions taken during this quest:
- Warning: following these steps may crash the game.
- Open console
setstage db02a 10
- Go to the Abandoned Shack
- Enter the shack and find Astrid dead
- Open console
- Click Astrid and type
- Wait until she walks outside
- Follow her outside, and she will "fly" away
- Go to the Dark Brotherhood sanctuary
- Repeat step 5 and 6 on all the dead Brotherhood members