Elder Scrolls

The Pursuit

28,577pages on
this wiki
The Pursuit
TESV Bust of the Gray Fox
Quest Giver Karliah
Location Riften
The Ragged Flagon
Prerequisite Hard Answers
Next Quest Trinity Restored
Reward None
Faction Thieves Guild
Type Thieves Guild, Main quest
Quest ID TG07
The Pursuit is a quest available in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The quest is offered by Karliah upon completion of the previous Thieves Guild quest, Hard Answers.



The CisternEdit

At the beginning of the quest, the Dragonborn must enter the Cistern of the Ratway, however they will find the entrance by the Hall of the Dead Mausoleum locked, making the only point of entrance the Ratway. Karliah will be waiting in the Ragged Flagon. She has Gallus' translated journal ready to show to the guild members, who require convincing. Agreeing to back her up will result in Karliah proceeding into the Cistern. As expected, Brynjolf, Vex and Delvin Mallory are waiting for Karliah and the Dragonborn with their weapons drawn. Karliah hands over Gallus's journal as proof that it was Mercer that had been stealing from the guild. Brynjolf, refusing to believe that Mercer has been stealing from the Guild, orders Delvin to open the vault, which is found empty.

It takes two keys to unlock the vault, leading to Brynjolf's confusion, although Karliah mentions that he did not need a key. Delvin, Brynjolf, and Mercer are the only ones who own the needed keys. Although vindicated, Karliah is just as angered by this as the rest of the Thieves Guild, except perhaps for the seething Vex, who vows to kill Mercer immediately. Brynjolf calms the guild members down and orders Vex to guard the The Ragged Flagon along with Delvin. He then asks the Dragonborn what have they learned from Karliah. The Dragonborn needs to explain him that Mercer killed Gallus, that the three of them were Nightingales and that Karliah was behind Goldenglow and Honningbrew, which was a cunning plan to try and make Mercer look weak in front of Maven Black-Briar.

After that, Brynjolf assigns the Dragonborn to an important task: They are to break into Mercer's Riften house - Riftweald Manor - and gather any information that may indicate where the traitor has gone. Before leaving Brynjolf, the Dragonborn may ask him what the best way is into Riftweald Manor. If the Dragonborn asked Brynjolf for additional information before leaving, they find out about a watchdog and an exterior ramp with a mechanism to lower it, which could aid in the Dragonborn's  escape. Also, asking about the watchdog named Vald will make Brynjolf indicate Vex may have more information to provide.

If the Dragonborn asks Vex about him, she tells them that Vald has a debt and that Vald he is only interested in gold, so buying him off is a possibility, but it will not be cheap and Vald might not betray Mercer. Consequently, Vex suggests speaking to Maven Black-Briar about erasing Vald's debt, or running him through with a blade and taking what is needed off his body.

Riftweald ManorEdit

Getting into the ManorEdit

When the Dragonborn reaches the behind of the Riftweald Manor, they may find many entrances into the area. Going through the expert level lock into the back, or a gate that requires a key, on which the Unrelenting Force shout can be used to take down the ramp, or the trigger can be shot (hitting it with a magelight spell also works). Then, they can hide from Vald and sneak into the manor, pickpocket Vald for the key or kill him and claim the key. Alternatively, if the Dragonborn has cleared Vald's debt by retrieving the Quill of Gemination for Maven, going through the novice level lock in the front of the manor, and then the one after that. It is important not to pick the expert locked gate. The Dragonborn must outside of the gate and wait for Vald to approach. Then, they must talk to him, and he will leave Riften, allowing the Dragonborn to do as they please.

In the ManorEdit

Immediately after entering the manor, the Dragonborn can hear multiple voices. Beyond the next door is a guard that is looking in the opposite direction. The Dragonborn can either sneak past him to the bedroom or kill him, which will, obviously alert the others. Then, they are to go down the stairs and ignore the guard at the other end of the area, and go through a closed set of doors. On the far left of the room there will be a suspicious-looking cabinet, the Dragonborn needs open it and push the back out to find another set of stairs to go down. Here, a large opening is found, leading into a series of tunnels.

The TunnelsEdit

It is not difficult to navigate through the tunnels, but one should beware of a tripwire that activates a series of lethal blades. Upon reaching the doorway, the Dragonborn needs stand next to it as, when it is opened, poison darts are shot forth. There is a lot of valuable loot in the room - a hoard of jewels in a bowl, The Red Kitchen Reader,  as well as a larceny target, the Bust of the Gray Fox, which, after from being sold to Delvin for some septims, becomes a decoration in the Cistern. In addition, Chillrend may be taken from its display case. This unique weapon is one of the most powerful one-handed swords in Skyrim, if the manor is entered once the Dragonborn is at least level 46. With the loot taken, the Dragonborn must make sure to pick up Mercer's Plans.

Back in the CisternEdit

Continuing on through the last tunnel, the Dragonborn will find themselves at the door to The Ratway Vaults. Following the quest objective marker back to Brynjolf and talking to him completes the quest.


  • The Quill of Gemination, needed to clear Vald's debt, is located near a sunken boat underwater roughly midway between the Riften docks and the Goldenglow Estate.
  • The Larceny Target for this quest is the Gray Fox Bust, next to Mercer's Plans - the objective for the mission.
  • Chillrend, a unique blue Glass Sword with the unique "Frostfeed" enchantment, is in the room with Mercer's Plans, though its case has an expert level lock. Valuable jewels can be found in the bowl on the desk with the plans.
  • Most of the Thieves Guild members will swear painful revenge on Mercer. For example, Sapphire will say "I dare Mercer to come back here. He sets one foot in the Cistern and I'll cut it off!"


This section contains bugs related to The Pursuit. Before adding a bug to this list, consider the following:

  1. Confirm all bugs with other editors on the talk page before adding them below.
  2. Always try reloading an old save first, before asking for assistance.
  3. Do not discuss possible bug fixes or origins. Leave those and all other first-person-anecdotes on the talk page, not the article.
  4. Always add  360  ,  PS3  , or  PC   to clarify which system the bug appears on.

Start a Discussion Discussions about The Pursuit

  • karliah during the pursuit

    4 messages
    • why? it also didnt for ps. can you re get the quest after level 46?
    • Karliah not showing up is on The Pursuit bugs list (down the page and click the show button right of bugs) to fix it for a console it says - Go...
  • The persuit map glitch

    2 messages
    • I have done this mission on PS3 to the point where you should be able to find the evidence of Mercer's plans on a wooden desk next to ...
    • That happened to me but it was in white run under the ground

Around Wikia's network

Random Wiki