Markus woke up excitedly, practically leapt out of bed, and began getting dressed for work.

Pulling on his boots and cloak, he tucked in his knife and opened the bedroom door.

His wife greets him at the kitchen table with a frown.

"Markus, we don't belong here. This isn't right."

Markus ignores the question.

Kissing her on the cheek, he grabs his satchel and heads outside for work.


The sun is slowly rising over the hills, illuminating the bright blue sky.

I don't think I will ever get tired of this view.

He's tempted to go back inside for a moment, and show his wife.

Maybe then she would come to appreciate their home, and new life, just a little bit more. 

He's startled by his co-workers suddenly appearing and nearly tackling him though.

Markus chuckles, bends over, and scratches under their chins, to their delight.

"Ron, Perlman, you guys are right, we should get started. We have a long day ahead of us."

They eagerly trot away ahead of Markus.

A fine house, this view, my wife, and these two lovable mutts.

What more could a guy ask for?

Ron and Perlman circle back and pull on Markus' cloak, happily dragging him off, and out of his reverie. 


The trio reached their secluded garden about an hour later.


Giggles erupted behind him.

Markus whirled around to see two priestesses cracking up and they strode up beside him. 

"We're on our way to the Shrine of Stendarr, do you require a blessing?"

Before Markus could reply, the priestesses raised their hands toward them.

He wanted to laugh at how scrunched up their faces became as they concentrated for a good minute.

Nothing was wrong with him.

They realized it too.

Frowning, they backed away and started hurrying in the other direction, muttering under their breath.

Are they saying something about craziness or instability?  

Maybe both?

I guess despite playing the game, I still am technically foreign. Need to work on blending in a little more.

Markus brushed off the incident.

There were flowers to be picked, and herbs to be collected.

Even though he was relatively new to the area, a lot of customers were depending on his collection of potions and ingredients.

Markus the Alchemist was his title in these parts.

Oh yeah, this definitely is better than tech support. 


Markus resorts to humor to try and cheer up his wife later that evening.

"Look honey, see how awesome this is!"

He cracks up as he thrusts his arm in their fireplace, burning himself, then healing, reversing the damage.

His wife isn't amused.

She heads off to bed and slams the door.

Markus crouches there, distracted, and the fire burns him.

Wincing, he pulls his arm out, but forgets to heal himself...


Markus thinks of an idea the very next day on his way home from a supply delivery.

He's not sure how exactly he manages to convince her to leave their home, but his wife has agreed to accompany him out for a nighttime drink.

Well, he may have fibbed and said there was a lead about how to get back to their home in New Jersey, but he'd deal with that soon enough.

"Well, this is it. I was told to meet him here."

His wife turns to him incredulously.

"The Bannered Mare, Markus? Seriously?"

She looks amused. 

Kind of.

I'll take anything I can get.

"Yeah, seriously. We'd better head in."

He's immediately showered with enthusiastic greetings when they step inside.

And one, not so pleasant hello.

"Hey Doc, I have this burn on my-" 

Markus grimaces.

"Uh, Brenuin, we'll discuss that later. Go have some ale, on me."

Brenuin scampers off happily with his coin.

After all the excitement, Markus finally gets a good look at his wife.

She's fighting back a smile, staring at the direction Brenuin went in.

He can't help but smile too.

Leading them to a table in the back, Markus calls out for a bard.

Brandishing his flute, Mikael saunters over to them and turns to his wife.

"Why hell-o miss-"

Markus cuts him off.

"Ragnar the Red, please."

Mikael huffs, but commits to the song:

"Oh, there was once a hero named Ragnar the Red

Who came riding to Whiterun from old Rorikstead

And the braggart did swagger and brandish his blade

As he told of bold battles and gold he had made

But then he went quiet, did Ragnar the Red

When he met the shield-maiden Matilda, who said;

"Oh you talk and you lie and you drink all our mead

Now I think it's high time that you lie down and bleed!"

And so then came clashing and slashing of steel

As the brave lass Matilda charged in, full of zeal

And the braggart named Ragnar was boastful no more-

When his ugly red head rolled around on the floor!"

Mikael eagerly waited to hear his wife's reaction. 

Markus as well.

They're both equally startled by her loud guffaw.

She's practically crying as she cracks up.

Mikael skulks off unhappily.

Markus however, is beyond thrilled. He waits for her to calm down.

"So, there's no lead of how to get home, is there?"

"No, not yet at least," Markus admits. "I know it can't compare to cheesy movies, but we have this at least."

"I know, she says. "Thank you."

To his surprise, she takes out some taffy treat for them. 

"But, how did you get these?! I've only heard about them, they're rare!"

"Well, let's just say I've been doing some work of my own too. The Thieves Guild needed some help, and I couldn't resist. I know these aren't gummy bears, but they're pretty good."

Markus smiled.

Things were getting better.

"Oh Mikaaaelll!"