Trials of the Hero The spirits of four legendary Redguards stand around the central shrine atop HoonDings Watch. Each poses a challenging choice based on a difficult decision they once had to make. I must speak to the four legendary spirits of HoonDings Watch and answer their questions.
Throne Keeper Farvad: You have performed very well in your trials, my friend, but Tu'whacca says the spirits of this place have more to share with you.
Hero: What more do they have to share?
Throne Keeper Farvad: Your valor strikes a mighty bell! The heroes have come here themselves—Makela Leki, Derik Hallin, and both Frandar and Divad Hunding! Their spirits have come here, to meet you, to challenge you, and to teach you.
Hero: I must fight the heroes themselves now?
Throne Keeper Farvad: No. You will not cross blades. The Sword Singers were as much mages as warriors. They sought strength of body, and of mind. These spirits will speak to you. Choose your words with care though. Tu'whacca says they seek to teach ... and to test.
Hero: All right. I'll speak to the heroic spirits.
Derik Hallin: All choices exact a toll, wayfarer. Some are trivial, but some ... some linger for generations. I was forced to drink from a bitter cup in my time and all Redguards have paid the price. I wonder if you would have made the same choice.
Hero: Go on.
Derik Hallin: Giant Goblins, beasts thought conquered by Divad, have returned. The fight goes poorly. You know the location of powerful magicked blades, but they are dangerous. They were hidden for a reason. Do you seek out the blades or fight on without them?
Hero: I take up the blades.
Derik Hallin: I acted as you would. We chose the blades and destroyed the beasts. But as a result, the Shehai—our spirit swords—were forever destroyed. Centuries of wondrous tradition was snuffed out. I must bear that weight always.
Hero: I battle on.
Derik Hallin: You would have met a glorious end. We chose the blades and destroyed the beasts. But as a result, the Shehai - our spirit swords - were forever destroyed. Centuries of wondrous tradition was snuffed out. I must bear this weight always.
Divad Hunding: A goat will run if you strike it. A jackal may bite if you give chase. Only man can choose to do nothing. The path of restraint is often the hardest. I pose to you a question—one that still haunts me.
Hero: Yes. Go on.
Divad Hunding: You are a scout for a great army, perched on a mountainside. In the pass below, a band of enemy soldiers slowly approach the position of your dearest friend. Do you abandon your post to help your friend, or do you remain hidden to report the attack?
Hero: I remain hidden.
Divad Hunding: So, you place duty above personal concerns. Your superiors would be pleased, certainly ... but could you bear the guilt? Could you walk all the long trails of your life knowing that your inaction led to the death of your closest friend?
Hero: I help my friend.
Divad Hunding: Yes, your friend may die if you do not render aid. But if you fail to report the assault, is not the entire army put at risk? How many men could lose their lives for this one soldier? One's loyalties are truly put to the test.
Frandar Hunding: To choose for oneself is simple. To choose for a nation is hard. The heaviest blade is as a feather compared to the trust of one's people. Abide with me and listen carefully.
Hero: Yes. Please continue.
Frandar Hunding: A tyrant threatens your people. If you submit to him and become his willing thrall, your people will be shown mercy. If you attack, you and your people will be driven from your homeland and exiled to the sea. What do you do?
Hero: I would attack!
Frandar Hunding: I too chose to attack—but all choices bear a cost, wayfarer. When the last sword was sheathed in the shadow of Mt Hattu, the dead were beyond counting. Many more were lost at sea during the exodus. Was the price of honor too high?
Hero: I would submit
Frandar Hunding: Submission would have brought peace, yes. But at what cost? All that Youkuda was and is finds its source in the blade. We could not waver. Even so, there is always cost. I chose the sword-many and many were lost. Was this the greater good?
Makela Leki: Great heroes often carry the greatest regrets. They lie buried in the sand with the bones and broken blades. Hidden. Forgotten. I had many stories to pass on, but only one is known. Hearken to me ....
Hero: Go on.
Makela Leki: You have won a great battle and covered yourself in glory—but you are gravely wounded. A magical memory stone will allow you to record your last thoughts. Do you think of the battle, recording history? Or do you immortalize your beloved family?
Hero: I choose my family.
Makela Leki: Family is paramount, yes. But are not all Redguards bound by blood? In immortalizing your own family, you may have robbed a civilization of one of its greatest glories. The price of legend is high. The battle is celebrated, but my family is lost.
Hero: I choose history.
Makela Leki: The battle was important, yes. But is love not also worthy of remembrance? I thought of my training and all the details of the battle. But as I turned my thoughts to my family, death silenced me. Now they are forgotten-lost for all time.
Throne Keeper Farvad: Tu'whacca tells me that the heroic spirits have returned to their slumber.
Hero: Did I pass the spirits' test?
Throne Keeper Farvad: Ha! Only Tu'whacca has such knowledge, my friend. I could barely hear you from here. Luckily, Tu'whacca has shared some of his wisdom with me.
Hero: What have you learned?
Throne Keeper Farvad: You show great wisdom with your choices, my friend. You pursue the deepest honor—that which is found in sacrifice. Your pursuit of the Withered Hand is proof of this, is it not so? Only know that caution is sometimes the enemy of progress.
Hero: Is this what I was meant to learn?
Throne Keeper Farvad: What? No. I simply thought you'd like to know what Tu'whacca thought of you. He is an excellent judge of character. No, the real lesson of these heroes is that legend always carries a price. You must be prepared to pay that toll when it comes.