Nightingale Subterfuge is a power awarded to the Dragonborn by Nocturnal in the final Thieves Guild quest "Darkness Returns." Stepping on the Half Moon platform confers this power.

The Dragonborn can return once a day to the Ebonmere to replace it with the powers Shadowcloak of Nocturnal or Nightingale Strife.


People and creatures in the power's area of effect will attack anyone nearby for 30 seconds. Powers can only be used once a day.


Twilight Sepulcher


Darkness Returns


Subterfuge is very powerful, and compares favorably to similar Illusion spells. It affects characters who are too powerful for Rout — which, even after all perks and a 25% boost to Illusion from vampirism, can only affect characters at level 32 or below. Subterfuge, however, will affect most characters in the game.

A good strategy is to use this in an area where there are multiple enemies at one time. While hidden, use the Throw Voice and use Subterfuge when they are in one area.

Mercer Frey seemed to be able to use this power. This was seen in the mission Blindsighted when Mercer used it on Brynjolf and made him attack Karliah. However, this could just be a Frenzy spell.