Online:Army at the Gates

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Derive the true purpose of the Alik'r army at Alcaire Castle.
Zone: Stormhaven
Faction: Daggerfall Covenant
Objective: Required for Cadwell's Almanac Alcaire Castle — Resolve the Military Standoff that threatens the Covenant.
Quest Giver: Sentry Rechiche on the south road to Alcaire Castle;
Sentry Beriel on the southeast road to the castle;
Commander Gerieux at the castle's northwestern gate;
Dame Falhut at the castle's southeastern gate;
Sir Edmund at Firebrand Keep
Location(s): Alcaire Castle
Previous Quest: To Alcaire Castle
Next Quest: Two Sides to Every Coin
Reward: Sir Hughes' Axe
173 Gold, Silver(?) Gold, Gold302 Gold
XP Gain: 1253
A standoff at the gate


King Fahara'jad of Alik'r has sent an army to Alcaire Castle. They claim to be on a diplomatic mission, but the Knights of the Flame believe otherwise. This situation could threaten the very fabric of the Daggerfall Covenant.


Quick Walkthrough[edit]

  1. Talk to Dame Falhut.
  2. Talk to Sir Hughes.
  3. Gain entry to the Castle Library.
  4. Search for clues.
  5. Report to Sir Hughes.

Detailed Walkthrough[edit]

Spies and Suspicion[edit]

There are a total of five people you can get this quest from. Four of them will point you to the fifth, Dame Falhut.

All four of them will be suspicious about the numerous Redguard warriors, sent by King Fahara'jad, in their midst, and will express doubt about the Covenant. Any questions are to go to Dame Falhut, their commanding officer.

And finally, Dame Falhut herself is at the southeastern gate, staring down the envoy, Darima and two of her warriors. If talked to, Darima will plead her case, claiming her armed escort was not meant in insult, as it is customary in Alik'r. She's a friend of the Duchess, and has an important message for Duke Nathaniel's ears only.

Sir Hughes has a bigger problem

Dame Falhut will stand her ground, but directs you to talk to her superior, Sir Hughes, if you want to change anything. Head up to the Keep, where Sir Hughes stands guard over the Duke and Duchess in the throne room. Sir Hughes believes that if tensions are allowed to escalate at Alcaire, it could destroy the Daggerfall Covenant itself. When you tell him the envoy is being held up at the gate, Sir Hughes will be annoyed but not surprised; apparently the Dame is quite literal when it comes to orders. He will allow the envoy in; in the meantime, there's another problem. Someone from inside the castle has been sending secret messages, intercepted by the Knights of the Flame, to King Fahara'jad. They're using the codename "Almadine", and Sir Hughes needs to know where this name comes from. He thinks the best place to do some research is in the castle library, but visitors need the Duke's approval, and he can't know what's going on. The library guard, Sir Gregory, is your obstacle: he will need to be persuaded to let you in or, failing that, to leave his post.

Inquiring further reveals that Duchess Lakana is a favored daughter of King Fahara'jad, and while she doesn't speak of her father very often, Sir Hughes suspects they are closer than would be apparent to look at them. You'll also get a lead about Sir Gregory: he is very jealous of his wife and any knight who might seek her affections.

Head downstairs via the northeast staircase. Sir Gregory stands guard outside the Dukes personal library. Talk to him and you'll have two options: follow the lead on his wife or intimidate him (requiring a perk in the Fighters Guild skill Intimidating Presence) into letting you in without the extra work. If you intimidate him, skip ahead to the next section.

To get access without Intimidate, you'll have to track down Sir Gregory's wife. He will let slip that she spends a lot of time in the market.

The market is just northeast of the keep. You'll find a well-dressed lady browsing the stalls; this is Sir Gregory's wife, Vendi Bouchard. She will ask you, rather offhandedly, if you have seen Sir Higgins. Apparently he has offered to carry her purchases for her.

Return to Sir Gregory and let him know what's going on. He will storm off in a murderous rage, allowing you to slip into the library.

The Library[edit]

When inside, your compass will point you to three books. On a small table directly in front of you are two of them. One is a record of Alcaire lords, listing only Breton names. The second on the table is a tax ledger, revealing the Duke recently purchased some fine ales and wines.

The third book, the one with the bombshell, is on a desk in the back of the library. It is called The Royal Lineage of Sentinel, and reveals that King Fahara'jad's second daughter, the Duchess Lakana, is also known as "the Star of the Almadine". You must now inform Sir Hughes, so exit the library.

Sir Hughes is waiting for you on the stairs. When you report your findings, he will warn you to be cautious, as the political situation is delicate. Neither the Duchess nor her father can know that you and Sir Hughes are on to them and their secret communications.

You will receive Sir Hughes' Axe and 173 gold, as well as 1253 XP. Continue talking to Sir Hughes to receive the next quest, Two Sides to Every Coin.

Notes[edit]

  • Sir Higgins does not exist in the game, and his name is spelled differently in your dialogue when you return to Sir Gregory: "Sir Higgens".

Quest Stages[edit]

Army at the Gates
Finishes Quest Journal Entry
Objective: Talk to Sir Hughes in Alcaire Castle
Objective: Talk to Sir Gregory
Objective: Look for Sir Gregory's Wife in the Market
Objective: Talk to Dame Falhut
Objective: Find a way into the Library
Hidden Objective: Read Book02
Hidden Objective: Read Book01
Objective: Search for Clues to Identify "Almandine"