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If you steal an item, the victim of the theft may subsequently send a number (generally three) of hired thugs to hunt you down. They will casually approach you, but be ready because they will attack you upon contact. The thugs will be carrying a contract which reveals the name of the victim who hired the thugs.
- The item in question can either be stolen from a location, or pickpocketed, and you do not have to be seen; a hidden theft can still activate the contract.
- Almost every NPC in the game can send thugs after you.
- Other than stealing, killing someone may also cause a relative to send thugs after you (see Revenge, Hired Thugs).
- If you steal an item from someone and kill them straight afterwards, they can still hire thugs to come after you (e.g., a dead Forsworn Briarheart may take out a contract on you for pickpocketing his heart).
- All of the quest stages are empty: 0, 10, 200.