You could understand that logic if you had been the one insisting there’s no other choice, but most people aren’t automatically wrong about everything. As much as you hate to admit it, this situation really is feeling more hopeless by the second.
Of course, you’re not gonna let Sigrid know that. You’re going to be an obstinate dickbag and keep trying to escape, just to spite her.
So you wanna know how I broke through your evil jerkface mind control? Why don’t you ask some of the other people in town who did it? You know about all of them, right?
Let me guess, Sigrid says: you’re talking about Stephane? He didn’t “break through my control”, as you so dramatically phrased it.
Except he totally did! He was the one who told me all about the bug musk and enchantments, and he even helped me plan this burglary, just to take your ego down a peg!
And again, let me guess: this was justified with some spiel about me being a magical hero chosen by the gods?
… after some additional consideration, you admit to Sigrid that Stephane may have not broken her control. But, what then? You mind-controlled him into believing a bunch of fairytales so he’d like you, and then help lure people into your dumb trap?
First off, this trap isn’t dumb, it’s fantastic. Thieves always go for an ominous altar, and I think we can both agree that the big cage is more artful than a cheap paralysis rune.
Second, I never mind-controlled your dear friend into believing anything. He happened to have an affinity for old heroic lore, and once we got talking and I discovered this, I found a way we could bond over it and coexist on better terms. That’s just what people do. And, yes, I had to wear some extra-nice perfume to get him to even sit down and civilly talk to me at first, but I’m hardly a villain for wanting to open a dialogue. If anything, sharing his interests with genuine enthusiasm is simply being a good friend.
And just look where that gets people! Did our mutual friend even mention this trap to you? I’m half-willing to bet he’s so ashamed about his behavior in our initial meeting that he’s willed himself into forgetting the embarrassing little details.
Oh my fucking gods, you erased his memories?
Sigrid sighs. I didn’t do anything, Miss Managan. There you go again, spinning me as some sort of evil mastermind for things other people–
–did because your creepy alchemy made them love you! Like why the fuck do you think you should get to control what everyone thinks?
Because people suck.
Because people are terrible. Do I really have to spell it out? As much as you all love to talk about right and wrong, every person seems to have their own idea of what that is, and – surprise surprise – it’s always whatever feeds their desires. The clergyman wants more people reading his fanfiction, the shopkeeper wants there to be lower taxes, and the little khajiiti wizard wants everyone to treat her like she matters. The “evil” these people decry is whatever happens to be inconveniencing them at that moment, and the “good” they praise is whatever licks their shiny boots. They’re animals, Katia. Selfish, short-sighted animals, and–
–And what, you think you’re somehow any better than everyone else?
No, Katia, that’s the thing. I’m not better than them. I’m better at it than them.
Deep down, I’m just as awful and conceited as everyone else. The things I want aren’t fair to everyone, I cause problems for people I don’t care about, and I do it all while fully convinced that I’m right about everything. Is that what you want? An admission of human fallibility? Because I’m no moral paragon. I’m just quite good at getting what I want.
I didn’t decide the unfair way the world works. I’m just exceptionally good at working within it. When it comes down to it, what you hate me for is competence – the fact that in a world full of self-serving animals, I’m the one doing it best. It’s jealousy, really. You wish you had the power I did, and if our roles were switched, I guarantee you’d have someone in this cage calling you a–
–I wouldn’t have a cage! Like, I’d take this big empty ritual chamber and turn it into an indoor pool with a crystal-themed juice bar or something! The fact that two thirds of your house are dedicated to a giant trap is a sign that you are a crazy, evil person who shouldn’t be controlling what people think!
And just what are good and evil here, Katia? Would I be good for letting people follow their every short-sighted desire, even at the expense of others? Or if I were as apathetic toward the world as the gods that created it? You, of everyone, should understand that someone left to their own devices doesn’t always get what they want. Maybe things would be different for you if you had a friend who was willing to be more involved, perhaps able to get you to listen to them.
Well gee, fuck you too, Sigrid. Maybe the reason I could resist your control is because I’m so goddamn resistant to good advice.
We can work on that. Together, I think we can find a good, reliable way to get my helpful advice through to you, just like everyone else, leaving no animosity and distrust between us.
You’re alone, it’s not like she’s playing to an audience, it’s clear you’re not buying her act.
Let’s put it this way – it takes more than cat-like flexibility for someone to shove their head that far up their own ass.
You open your mouth to speak, but hesitate.
This isn’t an act. At this point, it’s starting to look pretty clear that Sigrid is just completely insane. She’s not going to let you out of this cage until she’s thoroughly interrogated you on how you broke her mind control, and then it sounds like she’s just going to send you away with some kind of mind control you can’t break. And probably robbed, since you’re wearing a 200 septim cloak and she’s a jerk.
But, she also loves to talk. Assuming she doesn’t get tired of your antics and drop a rock on you, you might be able to stall her long enough to come up with an escape plan. Maybe you can find a loose bar on the cage, or rip up her enchanted clothes if she gets too close, or…
… or maybe there’s a magical solution. She may be resistant to your fireballs and apathetic toward your telekinesis, but you’re still a wizard, capable of manipulating magicka. If you can find some way to get yourself past the bars, or to negate Sigrid’s resistance spells, or even to get a message outside, you might have a shot at escaping. It’s like that saying, “desperation is the mother of”… learning, you think it was? You’re pretty sure you got it wrong.
What you mean is that you’re out of ideas so you need to buy time while you frantically figure out how to pull off some incredibly complex magic, or else you’re fucked.
And if you’re just going to be talking and thinking…
You tell Sigrid alright. If you’re going to explain how you broke through her mind control, you need to share some context. While it might sound longwinded and arbitrary, you assure her that everything you are about to say is incredibly important. The first thing you have to tell her is the story of the, ah… littlest… dog.
You hope this isn’t suspicious.