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Skyrim:Toying With The Dead

< Skyrim: Quests: Thieves Guild

SR-qico-Thieves Guild.png
Retrieve a necromancer's journals for an interested buyer.
Quest Giver: Vekel the Man
Location(s): The Ragged Flagon, Yngvild
Prerequisite Quest: Taking Care of Business
Reward: Leveled one-handed enchanted weapon
ID: FreeformRiften21
Required Items: Arondil's Journal, Part 1
Arondil's Journal, Part 2
Arondil's Journal, Part 3
Arondil's Journal, Part 4
Suggested Level: 8
Difficulty: Medium
Arondil on his throne

Quick WalkthroughEdit

  1. Travel to Yngvild.
  2. Collect the four journals.
  3. Return to Vekel.

Detailed WalkthroughEdit

The PropositionEdit

If you approach Vekel in The Ragged Flagon and ask him for work, he will tell you about some journals that he's been after: "I have a buyer with a very odd taste in literature, looking for some particular books. I'm told they're the ravings of a madman, a wizard named Arondil and his peculiar cravings. It's said to be in four volumes and very hard to come by. My client is offering quite a reward for them, which I'd split with you." If you ask for him to elaborate further on the journals, he will go on to say, "Recently, a woman was found... naked and shivering along the road to Dawnstar. The only information the guard could get from her were tales of strange experiments and Arondil scribbling in his journals."

Asking about Arondil won't get you much, as Vekel says, "Only rumors. He used to have a home in Dawnstar until they burned it down. The people say he was doing unspeakable experiments on reanimation... rituals only a necromancer would perform. After he made for Yngvild, he was never heard from again."

Once you agree to retrieve the journals, he will conclude the conversation with: "Then we have a deal. In his later years, Andoril [sic] moved into some ice caves known as Yngvild. He prefered [sic] the solitude in which to perform his, um... experiments."


The ruins of Yngvild

Yngvild is an ice cave located on an island northeast of Dawnstar. To access it, find the entrance on the north side by following the pathway up the island. Once inside, you are able to find the first three journals. The first journal is located on a table near two Yngvild ghosts and a leveled draugr. The second journal can be found on a table alongside a woodcutter's axe and a scroll. The third journal can be found on a table just before the door leading to Yngvild Throne Room.

Yngvild Throne RoomEdit

Once you enter the main chamber in the throne room, you will see Arondil sitting on his throne with an Yngvild ghost alongside him. The fourth and final part of the journal lies through the door behind him, on a table along with an unusual gem for the quest No Stone Unturned. Once you have retrieved the journals, you can exit the cave and head back to The Ragged Flagon to receive your reward.


Return all four journals to Vekel and he will remark, "Good. I was hoping you hadn't forgotten about it. As promised, here's your payment for bringing them to me. Got it as part of a fair trade from my client." Your reward for returning the journals is a leveled and enchanted one-handed weapon.


  • This quest can be started without talking to Vekel; if you go to Yngvild and pick up all four journals, you will receive a quest update telling you to return them to Vekel.
  • You don't have to kill Arondil, merely get his journals.
  • For poetic justice, sneaking into the final chamber unnoticed and removing the Soul Gem from the pedestal next to Arondil causes the ghosts near him to attack and kill him.


  • Even though the quest is meant for Thieves Guild members, non-members can also receive the quest when you obtain one of the journals. The only way to end the quest and get rid of the journals is to return them to Vekel.
  • Vekel will neither reward the player on completion of the quest, nor take the journals. The journals will no longer be marked as quest items once the quest is complete, and can be dropped or sold.
  • Vekel will reward the player, but will not take the books. The quest will complete, but not appear in the completed quests list. The journals will still be in your inventory, not marked as quest items.

Quest StagesEdit

Toying With The Dead (FreeformRiften21)
Stage Finishes Quest Journal Entry
Objective 10: Enter Yngvild Barrow
Objective 20: Retrieve Arondil's Journals (<Global=FFRiften21JFound>/4)
Objective 30: Return to Vekel
200 Finishes quest 
  • The following empty quest stages were omitted from the table: 10, 250.
  • Any text displayed in angle brackets (e.g., <Alias=LocationHold>) is dynamically set by the Radiant Quest system, and will be filled in with the appropriate word(s) when seen in game.
  • Not all Journal Entries may appear in your journal; which entries appear and which entries do not depends on the manner in which the quest is done.
  • Stages are not always in order of progress. This is usually the case with quests that have multiple possible outcomes or quests where certain tasks may be done in any order. Some stages may therefore repeat objectives seen in other stages.
  • If an entry is marked as "Finishes Quest" it means the quest disappears from the Active Quest list, but you may still receive new entries for that quest.
  • On the PC, it is possible to use the console to advance through the quest by entering setstage FreeformRiften21 stage, where stage is the number of the stage you wish to complete. It is not possible to un-complete (i.e. go back) quest stages, but it is possible to clear all stages of the quest using resetquest FreeformRiften21.