Random House is offering up a generous excerpt from chapter one of The Infernal City: An Elder Scrolls Novel, the first of two books designed to bridge the gap between The Elder Scrolls IV and V.
They had made their way from the hills of the old Imperial quarter into the ancient, gangrenous heart of Lilmoth Pusbottom. Imperials had dwelt here, too, in the early days when the Empire had first imposed its will and architecture on the lizard people of Black Marsh. Now only the desperate and sinister dwelt here, where patrols rarely came: the poorest of the poor, political enemies of the Argonian An-Xileel party that now dominated the city, criminals and monsters. Thanks, Blue's News.
They found the lair easily enough, which turned out to be a livable corner of a manse so ancient the first floor was entirely silted up. What remained was vastly cavernous and rickety and not that unusual in this part of town. What was odd was that it wasn't full of squatters there was just the one. He had furnished the place with mostly junk, but there were a few nice chairs and a decent bed.
That's about all they got to see before they heard the voices, coming in the same way they had which was to say the only way. AnnaÃ¯g and Glim were backed up in the corner, and here the walls were stone. The only way to go was up an old staircase and then even farther, using the ancient frame of the house as a ladder. AnnaÃ¯g wondered what sort of wood if wood it was could resist decomposition for so long. The wall- and floorboards here had been made of something else, and were almost like paper.
So they had to take care to stay on the beams.
Glim hushed himself; the figures in the group below were gazing up not at them, but in their vague direction.
AnnaÃ¯g took a small vial from the left pocket of her double-breasted jacket and drank its contents. It tasted a bit like melon, but very bitter.