Elder Scrolls

Waking Nightmare

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Waking Nightmare
TESV Waking Nightmare Erandur
Quest Giver Erandur
Location Dawnstar
Nightcaller Temple
Reward Skull of Corruption OR
Erandur as a Follower
Type Daedric quest
Quest ID DA16
Waking Nightmare is a quest available in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

The people of Dawnstar aren't sleeping well because they are all experiencing terrible nightmares. Erandur, a priest of Mara, wants the Dragonborn's help to destroy the Skull of Corruption, which will release Vaermina's hold on people's dreams.


I've overheard two citizens of Dawnstar complaining about horrible nightmares. They seem to be relying on a priest of Mara named Erandur for assistance.
Erandur has assured me he can end the nightmares, the source of which seems to be within Nightcaller Temple, a place of worship for Vaermina. I have agreed to assist him in this endeavor and we are now on our way.


  • Follow Erandur to Nightcaller Temple.
  • Speak to Erandur.
  • Follow Erandur.
  • Follow Erandur to the Library.
  • Speak to Erandur.
  • Locate The Dreamstride.
  • Speak to Erandur.
  • Follow Erandur to the laboratory.
  • Locate Vaermina's Torpor.
  • Drink Vaermina's Torpor.
  • Release the Miasma.
  • Disable the Magical Barrier.
  • Speak to Erandur.
  • Follow Erandur to the Skull of Corruption.
  • Defeat Veren and Thorek.
  • Speak to Erandur.
  • Wait for Erandur to dispel the barrier.
  • Murder Erandur or allow Erandur to complete his ritual.
  • Take the Skull of Corruption. (Optional)


This quest is given after visiting Dawnstar and speaking to Erandur, who is in the Windpeak Inn. All the townsfolk are suffering the same nightmares and Erandur knows how to get rid of them. He wants the Dragonborn to travel with him to the Nightcaller Temple, which is just a short distance east of Dawnstar, to stop the nightmares. If pressed for details, he simply insists that the Dragonborn needs to trust him as a priest of Mara.

The entrance to Nightcaller Temple is the home of three frost trolls. Snow Bears, Ice Wraiths or Frostbite Spiders may be there instead, depending on the Dragonborn's level. At the entrance, Erandur warns about the dangers within. Priests and orcs battled, until a gas called the Miasma was released that put everyone (both priests and orcs) to sleep. He fears that, when the doors are opened, the gas will dissipate, and everyone will wake up and be hostile.

Once inside, the quest mainly requires the Dragonborn to follow Erandur. Erandur will cast a fire spell on the wall to create an opening. In the next room, Erandur points out the Skull of Corruption, and says that the inner sanctum must be entered. Following him down a curving set of steps leads to some leveled orcs waking up that will attack if given the chance, and a blue barrier. When the barrier is reached, Erandur reveals himself as a former priest of Vaermina who ran away during a long-ago attack on the temple by the orcs. He became a priest of Mara and now wishes to resolve loose ends in the Temple.

In order to pass through the barrier it will be necessary to go to the library to find the book The Dreamstride. There will be Vaermina Devotees to fight along the way and inside the library. Upon locating the book, Erandur states that there is a way to pass the barrier, but it requires Vaermina's Torpor, a potion that allows the user to travel by following another's dreams.

The next stop will be the laboratory, where Vaermina's Torpor is stored. There are some more invader Orcs and Vaermina Devotees that will need to be dealt with along the way. The Torpor is located on the shelf in the corner of the laboratory. It is next to three lit candles on the wall. When Vaermina's Torpor is located, Erandur instructs the Dragonborn to drink it and upon doing so, he or she becomes Casimir, a Vaermina Devotee during the Orc raid on the temple. Casimir is instructed to release the Miasma to protect the Skull.

After releasing the Miasma by pulling a large ring on a chain on the wall just to the left of the barrier, the Dragonborn will find themselves on the other side of the barrier, where they must collect the Soul Gem powering the barrier. Erandur remarks about what happened, and then proceeds to the inner sanctum.


As the inner sanctum is approached, Veren and Thorek appear. They are the two Vaermina Devotees that told Casimir - the Dragonborn in the dream - to release the Miasma. After some short dialogue that reveals Erandur to be Casimir, they become hostile. After the battle, Erandur casts a spell to destroy the Skull of Corruption.

Here the choice is to kill Erandur as Vaermina commands and take the Skull of Corruption or let him complete his spell to destroy the Skull. If he lives, he can be a follower for no charge. However, this gives up the chance to acquire one of the Daedric artifacts, which are needed to obtain the Oblivion Walker achievement

Notable itemsEdit

See the Nightcaller Temple article for more details on available items.


Journal Entry

I've overheard two citizens of Dawnstar complaining about horrible nightmares. They seem to be relying on a priest of Mara named Erandur for assistance.

  • Objective: Speak to Erandur

Erandur has assured me he can end the nightmares, the source of which seems to be within Nightcaller Temple, a place of worship for Vaermina. I have agreed to assist him in this endeavor and we are now on our way.

  • Objective: Follow Erandur to Nightcaller Temple
  • Objective: Speak to Erandur
  • Objective: Follow Erandur

Erandur has revealed that Nightcaller Temple contains the legendary Skull of Corruption, an artifact of great power. In order to end the nightmares, we must breach the inner sanctum and allow Erandur to perform a ritual on the Skull which will render it inert.

  • Objective: Follow Erandur to the Library
  • Objective: Speak to Erandur
  • Objective: Locate "The Dreamstride"
  • Objective: Speak to Erandur

From a tome obtained in the temple's library, Erandur has discovered a way to breach the inner sanctum. By obtaining a special liquid, we'll be able to perform a Dreamstride... travel a distance using another subject's dreams.

  • Objective: Follow Erandur to the Laboratory
  • Objective: Speak to Erandur
  • Objective: Locate Vaermina's Torpor
  • Objective: Speak to Erandur

With Vaermina's Torpor in hand, I am ready to undergo the Dreamstride. I must drink the liquid which will enable me to enter the dreams of those who still slumber within these walls and use them to breach the inner sanctum.

  • Objective: Drink Vaermina's Torpor

I've found myself within the dreams of a priest of Vaermina. I am experiencing the Orc invasion of the temple over a decade ago. In the guise of the priest, I've been tasked with releasing the Miasma and placing everyone inside the temple in a deep sleep.

  • Objective: Release the Miasma
  • Objective: Disable the Magical Barrier
  • Objective: Speak to Erandur

After awakening from the Dreamstride, I was able to remove the barrier to the inner sanctum. I must now follow Erandur to the Skull of Corruption so it can be rendered inert.

  • Objective: Follow Erandur to the Skull of Corruption
  • Objective: Defeat Veren and Thorek
  • Objective: Speak to Erandur
  • Objective: Wait for Erandur to dispel the barrier

I've heard the words of the goddess Vaermina, who claims that Erandur will kill me after the ritual to destroy the Skull of Corruption is complete. I must make a choice; either allow Erandur to complete the ritual and destroy the Skull, or kill Erandur and wield the Skull of Corruption as my own.

  • Objective: Murder Erandur or Allow Erandur to complete his ritual
  • Objective: Take the Skull of Corruption

I've made my decision, and allowed Erandur to live. The Skull of Corruption has been destroyed and Erandur has offered his services as a companion if I should ever need his assistance.

  • Objective: Speak to Erandur
  • Quest complete


I've made my decision and Erandur has died by my hands. Unfortunately, the Skull of Corruption was destroyed before I could take his life. Such moments are the misfortunes of the indecisive.

  • Quest complete


I've made my decision and Erandur has died by my hands. I now possess the Skull of Corruption and look forward to performing my duties for Lady Vaermina.

  • Quest complete



  • Both Orc and Dark Elf blood can be collected here for the quest Discerning the Transmundane.
  • Using conjuration spells to resurrect the devotees and have them fight an Orc will generate unique dialogue.
  • Getting between Erandur and the wall when he uses flames against it, thus stopping the flames from hitting the wall, does not stop the passage from opening.
  • If Erandur is talked to while he is suspended midair in front of the Skull, it will break the spell holding him up and the normal dialogue options will appear. Exiting the dialogue will restore the spell and suspend him in the air again.
  • After going through the Dreamstride, all of the loot respawns on the dead enemies.
  • If the Dragonborn is wearing Miraak's Robes while in the Dreamstride, despite viewing the memories of another person, the tentacle explosion of the robes will still trigger in response to being hit by an attack.
  • If over-encumbered before entering the Dreamstride, the Dragonborn remains over-encumbered when in the Dreamstride with no way to remove items.
  • Followers cannot enter the Nightcaller Temple.
  • It is possible to get the achievement without the Skull of Corruption, thanks to a bug in the Ill Met by Moonlight quest where two daedric artifacts can be obtained.
  • It is possible to "talk" to some of the orcs if right next to them when they wake up, though they only spout general dialogue, and they will still attack afterwards.
  • Though the Miasma is supposed to degrade the minds of those under its effects, as seen with the cultists and orcs in the temple, Veren and Thorek appear not to have been affected as were the rest.
  • When in the Dreamstride, at the first corner of the hallway when running to release the Miasma, there can be seen a priest wearing hooded robes sitting on a bench and casually drinking from a tankard. However, this priest's body cannot be seen in the hallway after exiting the Dreamstride.


This section contains bugs related to Waking Nightmare. 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 Waking Nightmare

  • The skull of corruption

    4 messages
    • Speaking of, does it actually do damage? in my game it just kinda flashes white and nothing happens, dreams or not
    • It does some good damage. Try it in a crowdd room, whit some dreams in it.
  • No floor Bug

    • This glich is hard to explain. After I drink the torpor and there are sections of the temple that have no floor and cause me to fall out of ...

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