|Location||The Howling Halls|
|Level||PC+3 (min=3)||Class||Heretic Mage|
|Health||43 + (4+1.4)x(PC+2), PC=2-37|
|Magicka||113 + 3.5x(PC+2) (max=250)|
|Faction(s)||SE11 Apostle Faction; SE11 Ciirta|
Ciirta is an Imperial living in the ruins of The Howling Halls. She is the leader of a Heretic faction called the Apostles of the Light. Ciirta was one of the few to have survived the last Greymarch. Unaware that Sheogorath is Jyggalag, she now hates the Madgod for deserting those living in his realm. Her experiences during the Greymarch are visualized in her Antechamber, where several paintings illustrates the disappearance of Sheogorath in a time of need. Ciirta now leads a bunch of superficial individuals known as Apostles towards what she claims is “the light” but her preachings are merely a cover-up for her own personal vendetta against the god that betrayed her. Due to her unique experiences, Dyus will need her Eye during the quest Symbols of Office.
Ciirta can always be found in the Howling Halls, Antechamber, surrounded by her paintings and accompanied only by her second-in-command, Luminary Kaz. She never eats nor sleeps, but will be more than ready to defend herself using a wide variety of items and spells: a leveled staff, leveled scrolls, leveled potions, and a leveled unique robe with several enchantments. A powerful magician indeed, Ciirta knows major spells from the Alteration, Illusion, Restoration schools of magic, minor spells from the Conjuration school (except for Bound Armor) as well as both major and minor spells from the Destruction school. She has the Heretic birthsign, which gives her a Fortify Magicka ability and a particularly powerful Heretic Dispel ability. Ciirta can also cast the standard leveled Sorcerer spells and can summon a hunger. She also carries her key which unlocks a chest.
Your encounter with Ciirta starts with a request from Dyus inside Knifepoint Hollow. For the creation of the physical shell of the desired Staff of Sheogorath, Dyus will make a request for the Eye of Ciirta: "The Shivering Isles hold many secrets but few remain unseen by mortal eyes. The Staff is a tool of great vision and thus, requires the eye of one who has witnessed one of these unseen secrets firsthand. Ciirta resides in the Howling Halls of Mania. Find her and bring me the eye that has seen that which no other has." When asked about the Eye, he will elaborate and explain its use in the creation of the Staff: "The Staff of Sheogorath holds the secrets of this Realm. As such, it requires a vessel that has witnessed dark secrets. Ciirta has seen things with her eyes that no mortal has. Because of this, her eye will serve well to contain that which the staff must hold." Summoning Haskill at this point will net you even more information; when asked about Ciirta hideout, the Howling Halls, Haskill will tell the tale of the strange sect she has gathered: "The Howling Halls are home to Ciirta's "Apostles of the Light," or whatever it is that they're calling themselves these days. These zealots believe her to be some sort of savior, or deity, or something. Their doctrine is very confusing. The most useful thing that I can tell you about Ciirta's followers is that they will not harm anyone who is wearing their robes." When asked about Ciirta herself, Haskill will hint at Ciirta’s true intentions for gathering an army inside the ruin: "She is an interesting character indeed. She is one of the very few individuals in the Shivering Isles that is party to the secret of Sheogorath. She once made her way into the throne room during the Greymarch and saw that Sheogorath was nowhere to be found. However, she did not recognize this event for what it was. She believes that Sheogorath had abandoned the Realm out of fear of Jyggalag's attack. So while she is party to the secret, she does not know its significance. She believed Sheogorath to be a traitor to His people. She believed it so strongly that she led a revolt against Sheogorath when He returned. She was imprisoned in the Howling Halls for her trouble."
Inside the Howling Halls, you will encounter Ciirta’s Apostles wandering the ruin. When you wear Apostle Robes, they will provide additional information on their spiritual leader: "Ciirta is the lightbringer. She has seen things that we can only imagine. If you are to join us, you must speak with her." They will also attempt to explain Ciirta’s teachings: "We seek the light with an open eye and an open heart. We carve the flesh away, seeking the light within. The light reveals all secrets, and knows all thoughts. None can hide from it, and it shines in all places. Forsake the flesh, and you shall know the light." A closer look at the Apostles will reveal that a few of the are unarmed; talking to them makes it apparent that Ciirta cares more about Sheogorath than leading her apostles into the light: "Ciirta promised to bring us to the light. It is a way, a promise of a better future. Free from the shackles of Sheogorath. "The light is knowledge," she says. "Forsake all ignorance and morality in favor of the light," she teaches. But what does she do? She sits in her chamber and dreams of revenge against Sheogorath! She is a liar and has stolen our lives. Soon, we will seek the light without her."
As your objective is to claim Ciirta's Eye, you will necessarily have to kill her, one way or the other. There are two different methods to achieve this goal; either Confront Ciirta yourself or Help the Opposition claim their confiscated weapons back, thus helping them get rid of their leader and appoint treacherous Khajiit apostle Ra'kheran the new lightbringer.
 Confront Ciirta
You will locate Ciirta wandering around in the Antechamber surrounded by easels and unfinished paintings, accompanied only by her second-in-command, Luminary Kaz. Without wearing the Apostle Robes, she and Luminary will attack you on sight. Wearing the robes will however make it possible to approach her and hear her side of the story. She will immediately see right through you: "You wear our robes, but I hear the darkness that you bring in your very breath. You do not know harmony... you do not see my light. You come to me glowing with violence and death. Your light has no place here. We seek harmony for ourselves and the Shivering Isles." After exposing you, she will continue: "I sense why you have come. I can hear it in your very breath. You came as a herald of the false god Sheogorath. I know His secret. I have seen His empty throne -- seen it with my own eyes while New Sheoth burned in the grey fires of Order. Sheogorath refuses to protect us. Madgod? Bah! The Greymarch brings darkness. We seek light for all."
When asked if she saw Greymarch she will tell the tale: "I did. When the Knights came, I fled to the city. As they marched and burned everything to ash, I found a way into the palace. I sought Sheogorath. This is His Realm, and I knew that He would protect us. And what did I find? The Throne of Madness -- empty! Sheogorath had fled! Left us all to die! I hid as the doors to the throne room burst open. I... I don't remember what happened afterwards. I woke up in the marshes and fled underground." She will then explain how she ended up in the Howling Halls, and reveal that her teachings are a cover-up for her real intentions: "I could not abide Sheogorath's betrayal. He brought disharmony. He allowed the Greymarch to take us. I gathered those who could see the light and I led a revolt against him. We were... slaughtered by his Dark Seducers. I alone was spared. And in sparing me, Sheogorath made His final mistake. In this place, I will gather a new army and dethrone our coward god once and for all!" When you tell her that Sheogorath’s gone, she will say: "He is? Then the Greymarch has begun again? If that is so, then why are you here?" Confronted by the fact that you need her eye, Ciirta will ask: "My eye? You seek to remove the light from me? Why?" When you tell her, she will once again figure out what is going on: "And my eye is required to create an artifact, isn't it? Very well then. I have survived greater threats than you. Come then, and I will show you that in the end, my light shall shine the brightest!" When you challenge her to a fight, she will not hesistate to fight back: "Then you will die!" Both her and Luminary Kaz will proceed to attack you and you will have to take them down yourself.
 Help the Opposition
In Howling Halls, Congregation Chambers, you will meet a Khajiit Apostle named Ra'kheran who is obviously sick and tired of being mislead by Ciirta; in his own words, she does not intent to show them into the light, but is merely obsessesed to expose and kill Sheogorath for being a false god: "Tell me, is it true? Has Sheogorath sent you to kill Ciirta for her vendetta against Him?" He will then tell you about a group of Apostles planning to overthrow Ciirta and find the light themselves: "Don't bother refuting me, I know the truth. Yes, I do. But, there are those of us here who want her gone as well, yes. Those of us who think that maybe we could lead better she does. So, if you will help me, I will help you. Ciirta will die and you will not need to lift a finger. Then you can take whatever you need and go." When asked why he is still alive, he will expose Ciirta as a weak person, in need of all the man-power she can get in her attempt to kill Sheogorath: "In truth, Ciirta is weak. She needs all the able bodies she can get. This is why you are able to walk in here wearing our robes and not be harmed. Always she wants to strike at Sheogorath. She needs people and she leads them here with lies." Finally, he will tell you his true motivations for killing Ciirta: "Too long Ciirta has led us here. Always against Sheogorath! Always! But we are tired of her vendetta. Ciirta brought us here with promises to show us the light, but always is about Sheogorath, is about revenge! Ciirta lied, but when she is done, I will lead the Acolytes to the light!" Once you have collected the three Apostle Daggers, Ra'kheran will gather with the other treacherous Apostles, handing them their confiscated weapons back and, mad with power, yell: "Take these daggers! Slay her and at last, we can be on our path to true enlightenment! Here you are, my brothers! At last, we will be rid of Ciirta! Come! Now is the time!" When the non-believers get near Ciirta, a small but fatal conversation will take place between her and Ra'kheran:
Ciirta: "Ra'kheran! You come to me with blades drawn? What is the meaning of this?"
Ra'kheran: "I come to relieve you of your torment, dear Ciirta. No more lost memories. No more pain. No more misleading us. To the void we will send you. And without you, we will gain the light!"
Ciirta: "You fool! I am the light! Come if you dare, I will cast you into darkness for all eternity!"
After the conversation, Ciirta will immediately draw her shortsword and proceed to attack the treacherous Apostles, and will never hesitate to cast her huge arsenal of magic at them. Although a strong fighter and magician, and with the help of Luminary Kaz, Ciirta will eventually be out-numbered and will fall to the ground, dead, with all her unique memories gone to waste. When all is said and done, Ra'kheran will approach you and express doubt about the killing: "Ciirta is dead, and now the Apostles fear that there is no one to lead them to the light. I should be the one who is leading, however. Do I have your support?" After this, he will thank you: "I thank you for your help in killing her. Now, I can lead my people towards the light." The other Apostles will be quite satisfied with their new leader saying: "Ciirta is dead. Ra'kheran will guide us now." and "Ciirta has fallen into darkness. Ra'kheran will lead the Apostles to the light!" Ciirta’s followers, however, are rightfully worried about their questionable new leader and Ciirta’s demise: "She has darkened... what will we do now?" and "Her... her light has gone out. What will we do now? Are we damned to walk in darkness forever? Who will lead us?"
 Related Quests
 Ciirta's Paintings
During her imprisonment in The Howling Halls, when not preaching about the Light to her followers, Ciirta obviously tried to recreate her experiences of the Greymarch on canvas. Inside the Antechamber, several paintings are scattered around on the floor and the finished result suggests that Ciirta’s memory of the events must have faded over the years - or that she found Sheogorath’s absence so much of a treachery that she couldn’t stand to look at it.