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Forever In The Now

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Misty gave a frustrated huff as she finished the questline to make Ulfric Stormcloak the High King, frowning at the way he spoke to her character. Like the Dunmer woman didn't just risk her entire race, not to mention her life, to make him the king. She clicked her tongue as he spoke, knowing that she wouldn't get much from him just from the superior tone of his voice. "Can't you be a little happier with my character, you horse's ass?" she growled at the screen. When she couldn't take any more condescendence, Misty quit, sending the game back to the main menu.

"That's it. I'm going to make myself the High King and Ulfric and Tullius can kiss my Khajiit ass," she pressed the controller's left stick down, going to the mods to turn on the "Become High King Of Skyrim" mod, "maybe I'll be an Argonian this time, instead. That'll really send their heads rolling. Well, maybe not Tullius as much, but an Argonian as High King." She laughed at her own cruelty, "the nords would fucking flip." She glanced over the mods, turning some off and others on before smiling at the follower mods she had turned on. "Alright, boys. Ready to play?" She couldn't keep the grin off her face. One of her friends, jokingly, called all the followers she kept in one place (using the AFT mod) her harem. Admittedly, she wasn't wrong. She had followed them, with her viewpoint, moving around in Skyfall Estates countless times, Mmming at the mere sight of tall, strapping, sexy, masculine men wandering around her mod house. She had even blushed in real life when the follower Hawke flirted with her character. The creator of him really did do a great job. Sexy and flirty. Sign me the fuck up, she thought, finishing with her mods before exiting to the main menu. She took a long drink from her energy drink, licking the remnants from her lips as the main menu came up. "Alright. Let's do this," she said, hitting "A" and moving down to "New Game". She pushed the "A" again and frowned when the screen went black and the sound cut out.

"Goddamnit," she growled, thinking that the game had crashed as she tossed the controller onto the couch and stood. She went to the console and knelt down in front of it, reaching out to press eject before the screen lit up. She blinked, looking at the white with narrowed eyes as the scene of Riften came into focus.

She raised her eyebrow, thinking if she had turned on the "Alternate Start - Live Another Life" mod and if starting off in Riften was one of the options. She frowned and shook her head when she remembered that Riften was clear on the other side of the mountain, from where Helgen was. Meaning that, unless she had already fast traveled there, she wouldn't be in Riften and since she had started a new game, there was no way she would be starting there at all...unless she was starting as a new member of the thieves guild. She furrowed her brow as she looked up at the screen, "I haven't even chosen my character yet, let alone one of the options," she said to the scene as it panned down toward the Ratway, "and I didn't even turn that mod on this time."

The scene appears above the center of the pool in front of the Ragged Flagon, where the higher up thieves are standing, talking about how they're going to get the guild back on top. Misty blinks at the screen as she leans up, narrowing her eyes at the blonde man sitting at the far end of the dock in a chair at a small table with a flagon in his hand. He casually glanced toward the group arguing about the best way to proceed before turning back to his drink, as if bored.

"Wait.... is that.... Hawke?" she asked herself as she leaned closer to the screen, "they look so reh!...." She gave a yelp as she lost her balance, saying a quick prayer that her fall won't break her new TV before falling forward. She closed her eyes, not being able to stand what would happen only to slowly open her eyes at feeling nothing. Her eyes widened when she realized that the pool was getting closer and, if her memory was right, it wasn't that deep. She gave a loud holler as she pulled her knees up to her chest and covered her head with her arms, closing her eyes tight. She gasped at the feel of the cold water hitting her skin, inhaling some of the filthy water with her breath as she tread water and coughed. "Holy fuck that's cold!" she hollered, her teeth chattering as she swam to the edge of the pool and pulled herself up onto the walkway. She pulled her knees up, putting her feet on the edge of the pool as she wrapped her arms around herself. "I don't remember it being that deep," she muttered as she fought the shaking of her body.

"Weeeeellllllll, where did you come from, Lass?" a Scottish sounding accent stopped her for a second before she slowly turned to look at the members of the thieves guild standing on the bridge, watching her.

Her eyes moved over them, Vex with her frown and long, white-blonde hair. Delvin Mallory with his shaved head and cautious stance. Dirge, the bouncer of the Ragged Flagon with his sharp chin and mutton chop sideburns. Finally, her eyes moved to Brynjolf as he stood at the forefront of the group, watching her with calculating eyes and a knowing smirk. She took a deep breath and slowly looked back to her knees, shaking her head. "This isn't happening," she muttered, putting her head in her hands as she started to shake again, this time from shock, "I'm actually in Skyrim. This can't be happening."

"I'd say the fall scrambled somefin in 'er noggin, there," Delvin's deep, gravelly British accent didn't help to dissuade from what was quickly becoming her reality.

"How in the oblivion did she fall from up there, anyway? There's a grate covering the opening," Vex's sharp voice would have made her wince if she wasn't trying to convince herself that this was all a dream.

Misty slowly raised her eyes, swallowing as they locked with Hawke's curious gaze across the pool. He gave her a soft smile as he tilted his head slightly, widening her eyes before she dropped her head back down to her knees. Ohmygod ohmygod ohmygod ohmygod, is all she could think, Hawke just smiled at me and I... she blinked, sitting up as she looked at her hands and soaked clothes, "I'm a drown rat," she grumbled as she shook from the cold.

A low chuckle turned her attention to Brynjolf as he knelt beside her, "close, Lass," he said, his smile quickening her heart, "let's get you a blanket and some mead to warm you up. Then you can tell us how you got down here," he said, offering his hand. She looked at him before taking his hand and letting him help her to her feet, thinking how warm and big his hand was.

You know what they say about big hands, her mind giggled at her, forcing her to shake the thought from her head.

She walked beside him, keeping her eyes on the ground as they moved into the seating area of the Flagon. What am I going to tell them? I don't think saying, you're a bunch of video game characters is going to go over well, she thought as she took a seat, thanking Vekel, the bartender, with a nod as she wrapped the blanket tight around herself. She glanced at Vex as the woman moved to sit at the table across from her, frowning with her arms folded over her leather-clad chest. Especially with Vex. One thing she had learned from doing the thieves guild quests was that Vex hardly ever impressed. She liked doing Delvin's quests better anyway, there was more money in it...and they were easier. A steaming mug of something was placed in front of her and she pulled it toward her, more to warm her hands than anything as Delvin and Brynjolf took their seats around the table. Hawke, Tonilia, Vekel, Dirge and even the face sculptor, Galathil, had moved to sit or stand around her, curious as to where this stranger had come from.

"Alright, Lass. Go ahead whenever you're ready," Brynjolf encouraged, his voice gentle as he leaned on the table and smiled at her.

She swallowed, taking a deep breath and wrinkling her nose at the smell of sewage that overpowered the smell of ale and stale, damp air. She lowered her eyes to the table and gave herself a nod, " I don't really know how to start," she admitted, glancing up at the three most important people in the guild.

"How about you start with telling us how you fell through a hole that doesn't exist?" Vex asked, leaning forward in her chair as she glared at Misty.

Misty swallowed, we're already off on the wrong foot, she thought.

"Easy, Vex. We want answers, right?" Delvin intervened, making it a little easier to breathe, "an' we can't get them from someone who innit gonna talk, can we?"

Vex's frown deepened, but she leaned back, still glaring at Misty with dark, suspicious eyes.

"That's a love," Delvin said, giving Vex a smirk before turning his attention back to Misty, "well, go ahead."

Misty took another deep breath and shook her head, "you're not going to believe what I tell you," she said, tilting her head as she turned the mug on the table. She glanced up at Brynjolf as he smirked at her.

"Try us."

A few hours later, Misty glanced around at the people gathered around her, worry creasing her brow as they looked at one another, shocked. She swallowed and lowered her eyes to the mug as she turned it on the table, "I told you, you wouldn't believe me," she said, getting a snort from across the table.

Vex glared at her as she stood, "you really expect us to believe that you came from a completely different world where none of this exists?" the blonde woman snarled, her dark eyes furious at Misty's confession.

"Now, Vex. Who are we to say that what she's telling us isn't true?" Brynjolf asked, turning his attention back to Misty with a smile, "perhaps she believes what she's telling us is the truth."

Misty blinked at that and gave him a frown, "I'm telling the truth," she growled, glaring at him, "I have no reason to lie to the thieves guild about anything."

Everyone was silent for a moment, thickening the air as they looked at her. She swallowed and lifted the mug from the table, concentrating all her attention on the cooling dark liquid.

"How do you know we're the thieves guild?" Delvin asked, narrowing his brown eyes at her.

Misty shrugged, keeping her eyes on the mug as she licked her lips, "everyone knows...about the thieves guild and their....problems...." she swallowed, taking a quick drink to keep from answering anything and just as quickly regretting it. She spat the mead back into the mug, coughing and hacking at the bitter sharp taste that followed the warm sweetness.

Brynjolf and Delvin shared a glance as Brynjolf leaned back in his chair with his arms crossed as he stroked his chin in thought, watching the strange woman with curious eyes.
"Whatcha thinkin' Bryn?" Delvin asked, bringing Misty's eyes up to the two as she looked worriedly between them.

"I'm thinkin' that this lass may be the key to the thieves guild getting back on top," Brynjolf said, making Misty's eyes widen.

She shook her head and leaned forward in her chair, "look, I don't know how to even pick a lock, let alone sneak around and steal things. I can't help you remake a name for the thieves guild," she said, furrowing her brow in frustration.

"Easy enough," he said, getting to his feet, "we'll just have to teach you then, won't we, Lass?"

Misty watched Brynjolf head for the secret entrance to the thieves guild main hall before shaking her head, "I can't do this."

"Aww, don't worry about it much, love. It'll be like stealin' candy from a baby," Delvin said, giving her a smile as he started to eat the sweetroll he ordered.

Misty looked at the table, suddenly wishing that she had spent time really learning Skyrim skills as opposed to playing them. She sighed and pulled the blanket up over her head and held it tight around her, the reality of her situation starting to sink in a little bit. What am I going to do? Should I really learn how to pick a lock? She frowned at her own thought, knowing that it was essential when it came to delving into a ruin. Okay, so I learn to pick locks, but what then? I can't be in the thieves guild. I'm not cut out to be a thief. She glanced up at Delvin as he enjoyed his sweetroll before glancing toward Vex, who had moved to a couple of stacked crates where she leaned back with her arms and ankles crossed. There's the dark brotherhood too, but... she shook her head, I can't really kill people, can I? I mean, I can in the game but for real? She took a deep breath and lowered her head to the table with her arms tucked under her head, the thought starting to make her sick. What am I going to do?