So in Skyrim I'm near these hot-water and/or mud springs around Darkwater Crossing and the Mistwatch when there's a random dragon flying around. It took out a bandit, a mage, some skeletons, and tried to fry me. Repeatedly. I couldn't take the thing out, but I was able to heal up, run away, and live to tell about it.
After that some NPC named "Fugitive" spontaneously gives me something and runs off. Not ten seconds later a second NPC named "Hunter" runs up asking about the first guy. I chose the third option ("I take it this item is yours, then?"), he thanks me and runs off. Then, while en route to Iverstead (from the southeast) I take out a wolf who seems to be harassing an NPC, only when I try to find the NPC all I find is a black-robed hostile named "Assassin" who was apparently hired to take me out. That timing cannot possibly be a coincidence....
Anyway, so there are two dungeons within walking distance of Iverstead and I clear them both. The highlights:
- The boss of that island dungeon, some kind of Draugr who teleports out of the room, then back in with two dummy Draugrs alongside. And they're all packing bow & arrows. So am I. I used the terrain for cover and popped off arrows at anything I could spot, it felt more like a heated FPS battle than anything you'd expect in a high fantasy RPG.
- One room had a half-dozen skeleton archers at the bottom. Amidst a huge puddle of oil in the room. With two hanging lanterns overhead. I drop one of the lanterns and *FOOM* area's secure.
- The huge room of a dozen Draugr in the other dungeon. Emerging 2-3 at a time, I was never spotted, and probably took out half of them before they even realized there was me in the room. Lydia went toe-to-toe with a few of them, but only a few.
- I set off an arrow trap while opening a treasure chest -- but didn't actually take any hits from the trap. (I opened it from the side.)
Made my way up High Hrothgar, finally. That Frost Troll halfway up was really strong, I ended up stranded on a boulder (not unlike a cat up a tree) hitting the troll with occasional bursts of Flame magic while Lydia whacked away at it from aside. I hate trolls.
At one point a dragon started harassing the rural area of Whiterun. At some point during the battle somebody must've landed a crit because the dragon crashlanded. Like ripped-a-thirty-foot-long-skidmark-of-dirt-into-the-ground HARD. Terrain deformation is awesome! (Even if it was just an overlay.)
Anyway, my character's best skills are currently Sneak (at 55) and Archery (high 30's), and I've got a supply of over 200 Ancient Nordic Arrows for his bow (which I've enchanted with Soul Trap; good for filling those soul gems and recharging batteri -- er, I mean weapon enchantments). According to Skyrim astrology he must be born under the sign of the Thief. He's decidedly not a thief (I've picked more than a few locks, sure, but generally just bandit treasure chests, nothing criminal), but I do take quite a few risks with all these stealth kills against groups of foes. I have Lydia decked out in heavy armor currently, Dwarven armor looks kind of odd on her but if there's a close-range fight to be had I let her go first while I assist her from the shadows with my arrows.
The funniest part, though, was accidentally starting the "Night to Remember" quest. After a drinking contest of three ales your character is apparently too sloshed to disagree when the NPC who challenged you to a few drinks suggests you go hang out somewhere. Next thing you know, you're waking up in Dibella's temple in that far northwestern city (Markhart or whatever its name is) and the priestess accuses you of thrashing the place, groping the goddess statues, and generally making a mess. And how exactly you managed to get 2/3's of the way across Skyrim in a drunken stupor is part of the mystery. Not to say that it wasn't entertaining (it was), but I'm not going to keep that on my primary save file. Maybe with another playthrough, another character, sometime, but right now, not now.
I'm also wondering if you can design a Khajiit to look like Grumpy Cat ... rumor says apparently there's a 'face sculptor' in Riften to the east....
[edit to avoid double post]
Near Rorikstead there's a small cave with two vampires. First encounter against those enemies, a little difficult but I took them out, and the first one had some snazzy armor that reduces cost of Destruction magic and boosts MP regeneration by 50%. And it's about equal to leather armor in physical defense! (Unlike, say, mage robes.) The cave also has an alchemy lab and enchanter within easy reach, so I might be heading there often... enchanting actually seems pretty easy to level up, y'know?
Then, I was on my way to get Nettlebane from the Hagraven up at Orphan's Rock when I realize "hey, why's the gate to Helgen locked? What are these dead bodies on pikes?" Because apparently some bandits have taken up residence. At some point when I was clearing the place out I lose Lydia. No, she didn't die, she just ... disappeared. I went into Helgen Keep and she wasn't behind me anymore. Helgen Keep was easy to de-bandit, but it put me at a distinct disadvantage in Orphan's Rock. I ended up sniping the four Witches and the Hagraven (to various degrees of success; the Hagraven in particular I ended up having to close the distance and finish off up close and personal).
Then, after being told where to find the Eldergleam, an NPC pilgrim walks up to me and asks if he can come along. Not sure he'd approve of me using the Nettlebane to get sap from the ancient tree (I've actually seen this part already) but I figure, what the heck, sure he can come along, as long as we don't get, say, MAULED BY RAMPAGING DRAGONS along the way. Yes, there's apparently still a dragon roaming around Darkwater (dangerously close to Eldergleam sanctuary).
Anyway, I had the good sense to NOT reveal to Asla at the sanctuary that I was carrying the Nettlebane. Pilgrim is of course shocked to see me using it, objects to the idea of harvesting sap to save the Gildergleam (which he has no kind words for anyway). We talk and find a peaceful solution: Eldergleam begets a sapling to take back, and we leave in peace. No angry Spriggans to fight or anything like that. Danica at the temple is a little annoyed that I brought back a sapling instead of the sap, but I tell her what Pilgrim said ("renewal is more important than maintenance") and it's happy end all around for this little quest.
Oh, and I decided to join the Companions. That Falkoth or whomever guy really provided a good, deep answer to "who are the Companions". (And I'm already a little spoiled to the fact that their Circle members are werewolves.) Anyway, I'm asked to show off my sword skills with one of the guys, so I conjure up a Bound Sword, only for him to chastise me for using magic instead of muscle. So I turn to Lydia (who somehow reappeared when I warped back to Whiterun), thinking "Lydia. Sword. Now." and promptly retrieve that Steel sword I gave her awhile ago. I may as well keep it on me anyway because it's much faster to ready than a Bound Sword (though the Bound Sword is more fun, and it counts towards both Conjuration and One-Handed skills)
There was also one night I was out travelling near Rorikstead, a pretty dark night at that when a dragon swoops down on me. In the middle of nowhere. No guards to back us up or help us out. We almost had that thing, but I took a bit too much of its flames....
Next stop: Crash that bandit/vampire cave I spotted on the mountain road between Helgen and Iverstead. Nothing like a good bandit raid, by which I mean I'm the one doing the raiding.