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Jonathan Ellis

Lumber Mill suggestions

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There are a couple of lumber mills that are a little anomalous when it comes to the question of whether you can cut your own lumber there.

(1) Temba Wide-Arm's mill in Ivarstead. Normally if you can increase a lumber mill owner's disposition to 1, you can cut logs for free at the mill. (This is true of eight other mills - five of which can be achieved with the "Chop Wood" firewood quest, a sixth is achieved by investigating the vampires of Morthal for Thonnir's mill. The other two are listed below...) And you can chop wood for Temba. You can complete her other quest, for 10 bear pelts. You can even MARRY her. But even marrying her doesn't give you the ability to chop lumber at her mill. I understand she's not particularly rich, but at the very least you should be able to chop your own free lumber if you marry her... after all, given how rich the player gets, it ends all Temba's financial woes, and there's got to be some perks for marrying a sawmill owner, hasn't there? (Of course if you then take her away from the mill to lodge her in one of your own properties, she's no longer working the mill, and you lose the free lumber... Your choice.)

The other two anomalies are the two mill owners whose mills you can technically cut your own lumber at, if you can raise their disposition, but there's no way to raise their disposition unless they are the target of a random quest... There really ought to be a non-random way of unlocking their mills. I have a couple of possible suggestions here:

(2) Bolund, in Falkreath. Now, he's a Stormcloak partisan, very strongly so. Perhaps his disposition should increase to 1 if you talk to him after having given the Jagged Crown to Ulfric Stormcloak, and thus committed to the Stormcloak cause. If you chose the Imperial side, tough. Alternatively, maybe if you invest 500 gold with his brother Solaf in the shop, it should improve Bolund's disposition because you've done a favour for his brother. Perhaps even both options could be used.

(3) Hjorunn, in Solitude Sawmill. Now you CAN increase his disposition by chopping wood and selling him firewood - but he doesn't handle the lumber operation, he leaves that to his employee, Kharag gro-Shurkul, and there's no way to improve Kharag's disposition.  I'd suggest that it would be better to have Kharag be the one to buy the chopped wood, rather than Hjorunn, or to improve Kharag's disposition at the same time as his master's.

Alternatively, make Kharag into a pro-Imperial partisan - Solitude is the centre of Imperial influence in Skyrim after all - and have him be willing to let you cut your own lumber if you've committed to the Imperial cause by finding the Jagged Crown and handing it to Tullius and Rikke. However there's no great narrative reason for this, so I'd go with the "happy boss, happy employee" option above instead.

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