An Orc’s Life, Part 17: Axetravaganza

[Below is my narration for this entry.]


It may sound silly, but even though I was expecting traps in Dead Men’s Respite, I never once thought there’d be anything as terrifying as this that I’d have to deal with. A swinging death-axe gauntlet? Really?! The pressure plate traps and hordes of undead monsters weren’t enough, so you had to add in this nightmare? How very annoying, and also terrifying. Well, there’s no turning back now. We can’t get back up the hole we jumped down into, so forward through axe hell it is.

As I steel myself for my run across, I have a thought; if I don’t tell Ghorbash and Jenassa to wait here, they’re 100% going to get murdered by these axes as they attempt to obliviously follow me across. I see a chain on the other side that I hope will stop the axes, so I turn around and have a chat with “Jhorbash” to stay put. Alright, guys, if I die horribly to the axes, I have a favor to ask of you – I want both of you to get out alive…so you can go to the Bards College and tell Viarmo to suck it. I turn back around to face the axes, and when the first set of axes is starting to swing away, I book it. Luckily, my orc-y legs don’t fail me, and I pass under unharmed. I am now in the middle of an axe sandwich, though, which is not a particularly pleasant place to find oneself.

Stuck in the Middle with You

♪ Axes to the left of me, axes to the right, here I am ♪

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An Orc’s Life, Part 16: Dead Men’s Respite

[Below is my narration for this entry.]


Hello, Skyrim, it’s me Grawnk. I know we’ve had our differences in the past – I try to avoid adventure altogether, and you constantly sic bandits and wildlife on me every day. I think I understand why you do it though. I feel it must come from a place of tough love. You probably see this scrawny little orc making his way in the world and think to yourself, “I’m going to help that poor orc out by toughening him up the only way I know how: constant and unending harassment.” And believe me, it’s been a real gas, but do you think that for today only you could just tone it down a bit? I swear I won’t ask for anything ever again. Once I finish my impromptu prayer to the Skyrim gods, I laugh to myself. As if Skyrim is ever going to go easy on me. That’s alright though; I’m not as skinny or as helpless as I once was. I will make my way through Dead Men’s Respite, retrieve King Olaf’s Verse, and make it out alive. Skyrim be damned.

The time has come

Prepare to meet your doom, tomb.

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An Orc’s Life, Part 15: Bandit Buffoonery

[Below is my narration for this entry.]


Once we return to our campsite and finish packing everything up, we leave the rats behind us but face the most obvious bandit blockade in front of us.

Where's Smokey?
Are you guys even trying anymore?

So obvious, in fact, that my eager traveling companions take up their weapons before the bandits themselves have even set eyes on us. And unfortunately for these bandits, putting down Skyrim’s riffraff has become old hat. When they finally see our proactive party rushing at them, it’s too late. They are hewed down like the saplings they are.

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An Orc’s Life, Part 14: The Great Rat Detective

Hello there, if you have read this blog before, I need to address some continuity changes that will be present from here on out. I’m returning this blog to its original live-life-as-an-NPC format. What that means is I will be forgoing my written dialogue for Grawnk’s traveling companions, Ghorbash and Jenassa, and anyone else Grawnk meets. It was a creative roadblock for me, and I couldn’t get past it. Also, I reinstalled Skyrim and my mods, so you might notice some differences between screenshots as well. You can check my about section if you need a reminder of anything, and you can click here to start from the beginning. Thank you so much for reading.

Below is my narration for this entry.


I’m having the worst dream. I’m wandering around in the snowy wilds of Skyrim in only my underwear, and I’m getting chased by bandits that look like ice cubes for what feels like four and a half years. I finally wake up to realize that the rain has put out our fire and we are all freezing to death.

Baby it's frigid outside
I know you’re dying from hypothermia, but I really need a screenshot of this. Sorry Grawnk!

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An Orc’s Life, Part 13: The Fellowship of the Verse Part III

[Below is my narration for this entry.]


It’s been several hours since we left Whiterun, and we’ve been traveling non-stop, save for that incident with the thief where I totally wasn’t helpless. I’m pretty hungry, so I propose we stop for a bit to eat something. I get no complaints from Ghorbash, but Jenassa is resistant, and feels the need to make a hurtful comment likening me to a princess. She does relent, however, and we pull off the road to a clearing. While we’re taking a break, I decide to share what I’ve come up with in the past few hours for my commemorative composition.


Why do I feel like Jenassa is going to be the Skyrim equivalent of Simon Cowell?

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Day 28 of 28DCD: Relationship with Creator

So in this final entry of the 28 Days of Character Development challenge I will try to address the relationship between Grawnk and his creator: me. How do I feel about Grawnk? What do I like and dislike about him? How does Grawnk feel about me?

When I first started thinking about this blog in January 2012 I didn’t already have Grawnk thought out. I was deciding between an Orc and a Khajiit character simply because I wanted to do something different. When I decided upon an Orc, I just tried to bestow as many uncharacteristic traits on him as I could, because the idea of the anti-Orc appealed so greatly to me. Things like his bardic aspirations, cowardice, and daddy issues were all steps I took to remove Grawnk as far as I could from the typical Orc characterizations.

I feel very connected to Grawnk because in many ways, I have written myself into Grawnk’s character. This was unintentional, but I have noticed that I have made the way he thinks and reacts to situations commonly how I might react in a similar situation. I am glad for having done this challenge because it has allowed me to flesh Grawnk out and make him more of his own man/Orc.

For me, it is impossible not to like Grawnk. We are both giant nerds with questionable social skills. I like that Grawnk has persevered on his quest to become a bard even with all of his setbacks. From a writer’s standpoint, I don’t like that Grawnk avoids combat, because when I’m playing and writing Grawnk, I just want to go exploring and get in fights. Of course, this isn’t really a legitimate complaint.

I’m not too certain how Grawnk would feel about me. He had become complacent about his life in the stronghold, but if he had known I could have made it so where he could have had a better childhood, he would most certainly be angry with me. To that, I would tell him it is all about building character. By no means is Grawnk the same Orc that he was when he first stepped off the boat onto Skyrim soil. That is because I am making sure Grawnk is growing over time, and improving upon himself. If he lives to be old and gray, he will want to do nothing but thank me for the life I have given him. I know where I want him to go, but it is ultimately up to him if he wants to follow.

And with that, I finish the last day of the 28DCD challenge. It has been a fun month getting to know Grawnk and his relatives much better. I know this will help me with future posts I make. To everyone, I really appreciate all the comments, likes, follows, and views. To all my new followers, I hope you come back to check up on Grawnk whenever I make new posts. He and I would greatly appreciate that. Lastly, I want to give a shout-out to Elspeth, whose idea it was to do this challenge. Thanks again for reading, and I’ll see you soon.



Other 28DCD posts can be found here.

Be sure to follow me on twitter, and here on WordPress, to stay up to date with Grawnk and this blog. Click here if you would like to find other stories like mine. Likes, comments, and follows are also greatly appreciated.

Day 27 of 28DCD: Dinner Party

If it were me having the dinner party, Sheogorath would be who I invite. And yes, I’d have a cheese dish available for him.

Grawnk on the other hand, would go a slightly more practical route. He would invite all of the inhabitants of Dead Men’s Respite to a dinner party, and then not show up so he could sneak into Dead Men’s Respite and grab King Olaf’s Verse without any hassle, possibly coming back to the party to set the building on fire.

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Day 26 of 28DCD: What Would Grawnk Change About Himself

It’s a pretty easy question for Grawnk. He would want to get rid of his cowardice. I’m not saying he wouldn’t act cowardly anymore in certain situations, but at least the choice would be his to run away, and not his body just completely taking over. I can’t really expound upon this anymore because that’s really the only thing Grawnk is truly unhappy about with himself.

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Day 24 of 28DCD: The Day-to-Day

Being a blog designed to live life as an NPC, it is largely focused on the ordinary goings on of Grawnk. However, since arriving in Skyrim, there’s not been a big enough chunk of time for Grawnk to really develop a daily ritual. I believe Grawnk was only in Dawnstar for three days, and all he did there was wake up, get dumped on by Skyrim, be poor, go to bed, rinse and repeat.

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