Nondrick's Non-adventure

Day 15-16: The Grind

It’s ironic that the day after I decide to become an alchemist, I finally bring down my first deer. To be fair, though, the alchemy helped.

I’m out gathering far north of Skingrad, and I spot a deer nearby. I’d just picked up some nightshade, a deadly little flower, and I’d gathered some peony seeds earlier as well. Both share an alchemical attribute: damage health. I cook up the poison brew, dip an arrowhead into it, and creep as close to the deer as I dare.

My shot flies true. The deer is dealt double damage by the surprise hit and springs away, as they always do, but the poison works quickly. I see it drop a moment later.

Finally! I even get my arrow back. The venison isn’t worth any more than rat meat, which seems strange, but it’s more about the accomplishment and actually progressing in skill. Plus, I do need to eat. Look at me, living off the land. I’m all grows’d up.

I continue north, far north of Skingrad now, finding some new ingredients, mostly mushrooms. I slay a few lone wolves, pass some Ayleid ruins, and realize that I’m so far north that even by turning back, I won’t reach Skingrad until morning. I decide to press on. There’s got to be a camp or town or inn somewhere out here.

It’s nearly midnight by the time I stumble across a small settlement called Hackdirt. I find Moslin’s Inn, but it’s empty. Odd. Innkeepers usually don’t stray far from the front desk. In fact, most of them sleep right next to the bar in case they get late visits from adventurers or dorks in furry hats. The houses are all locked, so I wander over to the chapel. There I find a crowd of people. Midnight mass?

They are… less than polite.

I head back to the inn as instructed and wait around. Eventually, the innkeeper arrives and I rent a room for what’s left of the night, which is nothing, because it’s about seven in the morning by now. It’s pretty big, a suite, in fact, and I sleep until noon.

I visit the shop, which sells nothing but arrows and bear pelts, a little odd since the room is filled with crates and chests and should be teeming with merchandise. This Hackdirt is a strange town. Someone more adventurous should really investigate.

If they’re not selling, at least they’re buying, so I mix up what potions I can, sell the rest of my gatherings, and depart with about 100 gold to my name. Another settlement shows up on my radar shortly, someplace called Weatherleah. It’s a large farmhouse and it’s been trashed. The furniture is destroyed and there are human bones strewn throughout the place. This is kinda oogy, but as an alchemist I can gather bonemeal to use in my potions.

Even though there’s a bed in the place I can use, which makes Weatherleah an attractive free alternative to paid lodgings, the bones and skulls and dead roasted human body in a fireplace make this a non-option for the cowardly alchemist. I decide to leave. I take a skull, though. If I ever have a mantle, it might be cool to have a skull on it.

It’s quite foggy as I stumble upon some ruins named Wendir, though at least one thing is clear: I’m not going back to Skingrad. At least not for a while. There’s no house to be bought, I’m tired of the grape-centric conversations, and, for a boring alchemist Nondrick still has a bit of wanderlust. I’m close to the city of Chorrol now, it’s not far north of here, so I’m making that my destination.

I fight two wolves in Wendir, and win. And look, one even had a bone. Aw. Now I feel bad. I wonder if there’s a mod where I could have a pet wolf.

The fog turns to rain, followed by strong winds and thunder. Miserable weather. This YouTube link fails adequately to capture just how gross it is out. But you get the idea. Trudging along in the darkness, I come across Odiil Farm, but it’s locked up for the night. Luckily, there’s a Priory just up the road.

There are a couple monks inside. I bet a sopping wet alchemist banging on their door in the middle of the night is the most exciting thing that ever has or ever will happen at this totally boring and inconsequential monastery, huh? Poor dopes. Anyway, there are some beds I can crash in for the night for free.

Tomorrow, a whole new city beckons. Chorrol. Here’s hoping I’ll like it enough to stay.


  1. Lightishred says:

    Not as funny as previous entries, but welcome character development

  2. The Wendir picture link is broken.

  3. yeah the wendir link is broken. Please make the next one faster than this one i went into Nordick withdrawl

  4. Mr_Wizard says:

    Ooh! Adventure may find Nondrick afterall. Shadow over Hackdirt is going to be harder to turn down. Of course it will be easier for you, since you arent really roleplaying as some guy, your metagaming. Still might leave Nonny with a lingering sense of guilt. :D

  5. The link works for me… Its funny that you got to Weynon when the quest line hasn’t started…

  6. Meh.

  7. i have the same weather mods as you and i have never seen a storm like that dude! p.s. do see rain? because for some reason i get everything even sound but no visuals of rain

  8. punjabifury says:

    Nondrick = a Legend.

  9. Phew… I thought it would never come, great read. And some relaxation after Konami’s absolute **** up!

  10. I wish I could play Oblivion. I meet minimum spec for the PC version but apparently by Bethesda’s standards, “minimum spec” means “the game launches but the framerate is totally unplayable”. Single digit framerates suck.

  11. Yay an update.

    Keep up the great story.

  12. Ha, very good entry.

    On another note, i used to play with a pet mod, if you actually wanted to get a dog.
    Got myself a little husky, cute as :P

    On another note, Blaze, i used to have the same problem on my old PC but found it uses a different (older) pixel shader (i think) and i used to be able to play oblivion much better, my old PC spec was Geforce 5200, P4 3.2ghz, 512mb.

  13. not as good as the others, but nether the less, a update!!! update weekly/ or daily/ or every monday wednesday and fridayly…

  14. Razzle Frazzle says:

    fine…i guess
    too short for such a long wait

  15. it took a looooong time this is my favorite

  16. I love the concept of this but I am saddened that we got so little after such a long wait. I am still a very enthusiastic viewer though.

    One suggestion for one of the entries is that maybe you could record the entire day or days adventure and possibly do a voice over with Nondrick/your witty commentary to the people and things that you meet.

  17. Don’t let the nay sayers get you down! This is just as entertaining as any of the others, and I can’t wait for the next installment!

  18. I love this comic as much as your other work and I really hope it gets updated more often! :)

  19. Alexander says:

    Chris doesn’t exactly live to write stuff for you guys to read (I think). He’s got a life too (I think). So, stop being impatient. Great art like this takes time (I think).

  20. Awesome. I can’t wait to upgrade my computer, then it will be able to handle any storm that Oblivion throws at me! I’ve got stacks of cash to throw around, now I just need a way to invest it in a worthy cause (my own self-happiness!).

  21. You really shouldn’t worry about Reynold… I doubt he’ll remember anything when he sobers up (I mean, he can’t be drunk through the hole game).
    Or you should just think that, by taking 50 coins from him, you were just helping him in not going into alcoholic coma.

  22. Nondrick? Stay in Chorrol? Fat chance. He’s a rambling, gambling man he is. And I bet he always will. He’s king of the road. No phone, no pool, no pets. Definitely no cigarettes. Yes, Nondrick is that man by means by no means we all love and admire. Well, at least tolerate. At times. RARE times.

  23. I had no idea that the whole “shadow over hackdirt” quest existed, and its presence has made the game that much more awesome for me. Turns out that you need an NPC to find the nitty gritty of a world.

  24. I was gunna warn you about the boat in an earlier post, but i figured, what are the chances that he’d sleep there, but it turns out the chances were good. Its a strange quest most people dont do

  25. Reading this after seeing your TF2 comic.

    Couple things I must say.

    1st. F-ing great work, makes me (like many others) want to do this
    2nd. There is a pets mod (among then is a wolf). It’s called Pets of Chorrol!

  26. Oh, he told you about the pets mod. I forgot to make a deer comment earlier. Imagine the deer explaining to his or her friends and/or family how it came to get an arrow in the forehead! The Deer Doctors at “John Deer Medical Center” shake their heads at yet another easily avoided wound! ;-)

  27. Things are really heating up.


  1. […] Day 15-16: The Grind It’s ironic that the day after I decide to become an alchemist, I finally bring down my first deer. To be fair, […] […]