Cheese watches the sun set from the Rethan Mannor's courtyard while Fjorgeir heads for Balmora to pick up supplies. The sun's last golden rays fade from the sky and Cheese settles back in her hammock to listen to the peaceful sounds of an early evening with Fjorgeir away.
Suddenly Cheese's eyes snap open and her nostrils flare.
"A Vampire," she says to herself, smelling the air. "A Berne Vampire. This should be interesting."
Looking over the courtyard, Cheese sees a figure approaching, dressed in common clothing.
"What is your name, and what is your purpose here?" Asks Cheese firmly, stepping down from her hammock.
"My name is Vash," says the Vampire. "I have heard of what you do here, and I'd like the opportunity to tell my story."
"Fair enough," says Cheese cautiously. "Step inside and we can speak. I'll warn you now that if you have any intention of turning me or feeding on me, you will not survive."
"I'm Berne, not Quarra," says Vash with a note disdain.
Cheese pauses for a moment, weighing up her visitor.
"That I can see," says Cheese eventually, with a slight hint of a grin. "Few Quarra can complete a sentence without hitting or biting something. If you've been a creature of the night for very long, you'll have found there aren't many people who will sell you a flin.Come inside and I'll get you something without excess protein to drink."
Vash laughs and follows Cheese into the Mannor. After a few more jokes at the expense of arrogant vampires, Cheese begins the interview.
Cheese: So Vash tell me, what is the earliest impression of Vvardenfell that you can remember?
Vash: Well, like any other newcomer to Vvardenfell I had no idea at all what I was doing. I didn't know about fines, reading road signs, or quick transportation. What's a Balmora? What year is it? I remember it being VERY different from other environments I've been exposed to, and quite a nice change.
Cheese: It truly is a beautiful place. I spend every evening that I can out there on that hammock, and I still have not tired of the view. Are there any places in Vvardenfell that still have a major impact on you?
Vash: Hm, I'd say inside Ghostgate. It's got that weird feeling to it. You know, when you're headed up there and it begins to loom in the distance. And then when you're actually inside of Ghostgate the redness is a little creepy.
Cheese: I thhink that most of it depends upon your purpose whilst there. Can you name the first major challenge you came up against?
Vash: The ever internal struggle of what and what not to carry with the allotted encumbrance.
Cheese: I've often wanted to be able to have a pack horse around(1). I had a very nice pack horse when I was living in Daggerfall. I hear that getting them to travel across the ocean is the biggest challenge. Speaking of challenges, can you name anything which has caused you recent difficulty?
Vash: The guards in almost every town hate me. I don't know why either; I haven't done ANYTHING to them. Doing missions and getting money from Creeper has been sort of difficult since I can't take two steps without being attacked.
Cheese: Yes, well most guards are paid to kill vampires on sight, you know. Who would you say is the most interesting person you have met in your travels so far?
Vash: Mistress Therana in Tel Branora. She's the best when you're able to actually talk to her. "When I was VERY young we had to grow our own spiders..."
Cheese: She is an 'interesting' character. Clealy off her rock, but then to enjoy life, many people have to be. How do you feel about slavery in Vvardenfell?
Vash: I slaughtered everyone on the Dren Plantation and freed all of the slaves, I killed the guy in Telvanni and freed his slaves, when I have the money I go and buy slaves and then set them free. I don't like slavery, and if it absolutely MUST be around they could at least give them decent clothes...
Cheese: At least it's not as cold as Solstheim here, but yes, I agree. If you are going to keep slaves inspite of any moral imperatives you may or may not possess, the least you could do is provide some sort of protection against the elements. What are your views on the Morrowind's Tribunal of Living Gods?
Vash: *Pffft* Living Gods! If what I gather from the papers I've read, the Three are merely people with Godlike powers, so TECHNICALLY they're not Gods. Aside from that tangent I don't really have any views. I don't see why a God would want to hang out in the mortal realm...
Cheese: So you think it's foolish of the Dunmer to worship the Tribunal then?
Vash: I don't really think it's foolish of the Dunmer to worship the Temple, but if it were ME, and I knew the truth about Vivec and those others, I'd feel pretty stupid. I don't see why anyone would want to worship their own peers. It's their call though.
Cheese: Fair enough. I've found Vivec to be quite an intersting conversationalist, and I do regret not having the chance to speak with Sotha Sil. I feel that in a conversation, he at least would be able to put aside the poetic arty mysticism that Vivec seems bound by. What theories do you have on the disappearance of the Dwemer race?
Vash: You can tell just by looking at the ruins that they were well off. Perhaps they became TOO well off and let social and moral decay take over, leaving room for other factions or races to conquer them. Or maybe people just didn't like the fact that the armor they had made the wearers look like giant super bugs...
Cheese: Social and moral decay, eh? I'll have to mention that theory to Yagrum next time I'm down in the Corprusarium. What do you know about the events at the climax of the Battle at Red Mountain?
Vash: I'm not much of a reader, and that also goes for listening. I've missed quite a bit about Red Mountain because I have a short attention span. But what I wonder is who really DID make the first transgression? Dagoth, or Neverar?
*Cheese hides her reply behind a wry smile*
Cheese: I suppose we'll never know. Moving right along, where is your favourite holiday spot in Morrowind?
Vash: I really like Balmora for some reason. Have you noticed that they don't care in that town? You can take things out of crates and you don't get fined. That's awesome, especially since I make my living as a thief.
Cheese: I don't know for sure, but I think that Caius Cossades may have something to do with why Balmora's guards look the other way whilst you're honing your skills. You've mentioned that you're not involved with many factions in Vvardenfell. Are there any that specifically appeal to you that you may think of joining in the future?
Vash: None of the known factions interest me. But, if I could join ANY faction I wanted I'd join up with Sixth House. *gasp* Just for kicks though. I've even set up a little shrine in my house.
Cheese: With or without Dagoth Ur at the helm? No actually, don't answer that. Name one thing you would most like to see in Morrowind.
Cheese: You know, you're not the first person I've heard say that. Beyond being one yourself, what do you know of the Vampire population of Morrowind?
Vash: I think people need to get a grip and relax about us. Just because we're unholy beasts doesn't mean we're going to infect or attack anything that moves. Only the cattle and rival clans. Those damn Quarra and Aundae think they're SO perfect. "We fight people", "We can do magic." Why is the art of stealth so over looked?
Cheese: I myself spent a while as a member of the Berne Clan. I believe the reason we Bernes are overlooked iis because, like the Thieves Guild, it's best for us to keep a low profile. It does sort of put a bit of a limit on the people who are willing to talk to you though. Just about all the Ordinators I tried to interview attacked me on sight. On another note, how do you feel about the recent Warewolf sightings on the island of Solstheim?
Vash: Ordinators have always been attacking me, so they're no problem. And as for your question, having never been to Solstheim I wouldn't know anything about these Werewolf sightings.
Cheese: Fair enough, but I think you should read up. I've spent a while studying them myself, and the spread of Lycanthropy throughout Morrowind seems to be climbing higher than I've ever heard of before. Why, the next person you speak to could be a Warewolf. You never know. What do you think of the Daedra presence in Morrowind?
Vash: I personally like having the Daedra around. When they're not attacking you they're neat to observe in their nonviolent state. I've got a Dremora of my own in fact. Follows me around and helps me fight. I want to name him, but nothing comes to mind.
Cheese: None of the Dremora I've met so far have any sort of sense of humour. Call him Chuckles. I think that would suit him well. I'm sure he's got at least twice the sense of humour than a Dremora I once met at Maar Gan. What views to you have on the Ashlander tribes of Vvardenfell?
Vash: The Ashlanders are nice. All of the tribes are all very hospitable and will barter with you. It took a while for the Urshiliku to warm up to me though. And it took even longer for Sul Matuul to stop attacking me...
Cheese: The Ashlanders don't give their trust easily, especially if you walk into the wrong tent unnanounced. What is the last entry in your Journal?
Vash: In my last journal entry I had returned all of those clothes Serandas had purchased. Nice kid, but he has a bit of a case of impulse buying...