A Taste of Freedom

Lich (Xhaxh)

Location Driftwood
Suggested Level 12+
Previous Quest Shadow over Driftwood

A Taste of Freedom is a Quest in Divinity: Original Sin II.

You find a tortured Lich hungry to feed after being drained of his Source for a long time by Mordus. Will you help him or kill him?


Important NPCs

  • Desiccated Undead


A Taste of Freedom Objectives

  1. Find an ornate skull embedded in the wall, which seems to be missing one of its eyes.
  2. Find an unusual gem in Wrecker's Cave or lockpick the skull.
  3. Place the gem inside the skull to reveal a secret passageway with a hatch leading underground.
  4. Solve the puzzle underground.
  5. Set the lich free.
  6. Let him feed or kill him.
  7. Meet the lich and watch him reclaim his soul jar.


A Taste of Freedom Walkthrough

Beneath Mordus' house, a secret passage can be found by lockpicking a ornate skull hidden on the wall. If you look on your minimap, you will notice a path that's not visible in the world. If you head towards that direction, you will discover the skull.

You should complete this along with the quest Shadow over Driftwood. The skull can be lockpicked with Thievery 5, but you can also kill Mordus in the Wrecker's Cave to find a gem on his corpse that will open this lock.



















Solving the Pressure Plate Puzzle

Underground, you will find a locked door and a pressure plate puzzle. Facing the door, cast Spirit Vision to see the correct pattern. A series of symbols will appear.

Place vases or items (fish work fine; you should have plenty from Driftwood) from throughout the room on the plates in order to match the symbols with the pattern shown by Spirit Vision. You need to trigger five pressure plates to solve the puzzle, so even a full party will not be enough.

(To avoid spoiling the fun, the solution has been placed at the bottom of this page.)

After activating the correct plates, the door will permanently open.

To Free or Not to Free? And a battle with the Undead

Before exploring the next room, walk straight to the middle. Upon reaching the middle of the room, the Lich warns you that the "urns will shatter" and the "bones will... rise". Talk to the Lich before looting, as you will miss out on the Lich's reward if you don't speak to him first.

Speak to the Lich again and you will learn that Mordus has kept him here for a long time draining him of source. This also prompts a conversation regarding its release. Pressing the yellow button turns off the braziers' lighting. Pressing the green button releases the Lich, immediately begins the fight and spawns the undead within the vases. You can press it during battle as well. The Lich will assist you in the fight against the undead after it is freed. Pressing the red button begins the fight without releasing the Lich. Pressing the purple button does something to the chest right of the table, but seemingly nothing.

Quest: A Taste of Freedom - Switch Panel

After defeating the undead, you can now free him to complete the quest and obtain a reward. He will offer you a skillbook of your choice. If you attempt to ask the Lich to teach you about Source, he will pout and give you a random skillbook instead.

After he leaves (assuming you spoke with him first), this will prompt a conversation among your party regarding the potential danger of a Lich escaping.

If you began the fight without talking to the Lich first, he will simply leave after the fight without giving you a reward, and the quest won't be updated. If one of the undead accidentally attacks the Lich, he will join the fight as if you didn't speak with him.

To Feed or Not to Feed?

Once you set him loose, you will encounter him again in Cloisterwood (at the bottom blue flag shown in the map below). This time, you will see him feasting on the remains of innocent dwarves, unable to satiate his hunger for replenishing his Source.

If you approach the Lich and end up attacking him, he will summon three dwarven skeletons to aid him. After you kill them, he will beg you once again to let him live. You can kill him right then and there to loot his body for some good loot and a unique staff, or agree to spare him so he can continue to feed. It is highly recommended to let him continue feeding, so you can earn more experience once you meet him a third time. Read on if you do.

If you allowed him to live, he will trudge around the bodies and start feeding. You can talk to him again at this point to sacrifice a Source Point so he won't have to feed on any more innocents. This will net you some experience and he will happily ask you to meet him again to retrieve his Soul Jar.

Note: If the Lich left after the first encounter because you ignored him, you will not be able to offer your own Source for him to feed on.

At this point, the available dialogue choices will vary based on your actions thus far, but they will all end the same way. You will meet him again for a third and final encounter, at the entrance to the ruins. (Shown as a blue flag at the top right of the map above.)


Note: Save at this point in time as you will likely be interested in fighting him after the quest for extra loot.

If you did not sacrifice your Source to him, he will be feeding on a young child and you will have to decide between letting him continue or killing him.

If you sacrificed your Source to him, he will be waiting at the altar without anybody dead, and he will ask for some of your blood to complete the ritual (this is safe; he only takes a small portion of your Vitality). You will have to pick a party member who isn't undead in order to give him your blood.

In any case, he will proceed to reveal his name at Xhaxh and spawn a chest called Xhaxh's Cache on the altar before him. You will receive some experience and the quest will close at this point. However...

If you attack him right after he spawns the chest, he will spawn four Parasitic Hearts this time around. Killing him is the utmost priority in this fight since the Parasitic Hearts deal relatively low damage compared to him. This time, you will kill him off for good and obtain a sizeable amount of experience for your troubles, as well as the unique Necromancer staff called the "Xhaxh's Staff of Parasitic Decay" and other powerful trinkets that you can loot his body, in addition to the chest he spawned earlier.


  • 13900XP once you have unlocked the skull and reveal the secret underground hatch.
  • 16200XP total for killing the 4 skeletons hidden in the vases.
  • Random skillbook or skillbook of your choice (Necromancy, Geomancy, Huntsman, Scoundrel, Warfare) upon freeing him, along with 2800XP.
  • 18750XP for killing all the dwarf skeletons on the 2nd encounter (this will not update or mark the quest as "Closed") OR let him live and sacrifice a source point to help him feed for 4175XP.
  • 22450XP if you choose to kill the Desiccated Undead on the 3rd encounter (killing him on the 2nd encounter gives no XP).
  • 11225XP for killing each parasitic heart on the 3rd encounter, for a total of 44900XP for all 4 kills.
  • 4175XP and a chest with good loot upon completion of the quest.

Pressure Plate Solution

    • Anonymous

      18 Sep 2018 20:55  

      Funny (but useless) tip = At the last stage let him open the vault and after he obtains his Soul Jar, quickly go in stealth mode with any character with Thievery at least at lvl 1 and pickpocket his jar from inventory before he dissapears. :D "The lich retrieved his soul jar and left us his catche." Poor lich, he will never know what happend :D

      • Anonymous

        07 Sep 2018 22:30  

        I had a glitch that caused the lich to not leave the basement after being freed. I couldnt continue the quest past that point.

        • Anonymous

          05 Sep 2018 21:38  

          Right after I gave him blood I hastily clicked the Soul Jar, after that he attacked me destroying his soul jar as collateral. He killed himself lol

          • Anonymous

            05 Sep 2018 21:06  

            if you can start the fight after he summons the chest you can just tp him right after he does and initiate the fight

            • 30 Aug 2018 04:26  

              You can no longer kill the xhash if u choose the option 2 dialog (which he will spawn the chest and the jar). The chest is trash, though The only way to get the exp (around 14K) and some good gear is choosing the option 1 and kill him manually. 1. Place your teleporter far away (to the Janna house)" 2. Choose 1 character to speak and choose option 2 on the dialog 3. Before the dialog 'end', teleport him far away from the altar and rush your companion to talk again to 'end' the dialog 4. You can fight him solo (plus 1 parasitic heart he spawn) 5. Use the physical, bcs he has magic resist

              • Anonymous

                19 Aug 2018 23:33  

                I have read through a lot of issues with the walk through on this one I will try and answer some of them: This guide is accurate. On the first encounter free him, win the battle and select a skill, as someone mentions they are pretty terrible all around unless you happen to not have one that he gives already. selecting "Source skills" will randomize the selection with no Source skill given. On the second encounter let him go. THEN TALK TO HIM A SECOND TIME TO OFFER SOURCE POINT I missed this and had to reload to get the outcome I wanted. On third encounter SAVE BEFORE SPEAKING. Offer blood for ritual, time your attack so that it hits BEFORE he gets his soul jar. He SHOULD turn around and attack you. I was forced to reload as this did not happen first go for me. As others have mentioned. If you hit him before he gets his soul jar he should attack no matter what. Survive first onslaught if you can. I was not able to (Tactician mode) so it took me a couple times. Then, as soon as you are able, attack the soul jar with whatever character you can. He will die instantly. Fight off his minions if needed. As others have said, if you can manage to teleport him AND save the soul jar from getting picked up his minions will not spawn. I was unable to do this AND leave the jar on the alter however. You can still fight him without his minions and with the soul jar in his inventory but he was able to one shot my party so this was NOT an option for me. Hope this helps, position your party well and you should be fine. I run a Summoner, ranger, rouge, and fighter. My rouge can hit with both ranged and melee which helped as I was able to use her to hit the soul jar at range.

                • Anonymous

                  19 Aug 2018 03:51  

                  Easy to defeat him on 3rd encounter: He first attacked Lohse and charmed her, used another char to teleport Lohse to Jahan's front yard, Jahan would match over then GG.

                  • Anonymous

                    12 Aug 2018 11:13  

                    A really easy way to break this fight is to position yourself near Jahan on your first turn. He'll aggro onto the parasites and oneshot them with chainlighting

                    • Anonymous

                      08 Aug 2018 15:00  

                      In order to kill him before he disappears you need to attack him around the time he starts to summon his cache and extract his soul jar. If you are fast enough when he attacks your party with Acid Spores he will also hit his soul jar accidentally and basically kill himself instantly, saving you the need to actually fight him.

                      • Anonymous

                        01 Aug 2018 22:12  

                        You can help him all the way and steal souljar in the end, right before his teleportation. And then break it (or consume source). No additional XP though.

                        • Anonymous

                          24 Jul 2018 04:01  

                          Be careful if Hannag gets involved in the third fight. Lava portals can kill you if you don't see the lava when you are moving about the field of battle X_X

                          • Anonymous

                            17 Jul 2018 20:59  

                            The map of the solution to the puzzle got me confused. i thought the rat was part of the puzzle it was kind of hard to see the barrel. If you struggling look on the right side there is a barrel on one of the plates

                            • Anonymous

                              08 Jul 2018 11:15  

                              Interestingly, you can still use source vampirism on the dead dwarves to restore the source point you give to the lich.

                              • Anonymous

                                28 Jun 2018 16:35  

                                Skillbook rewards appear to be fixed:
                                Necromancy – Deathwish
                                Geomancy – Worm Tremor
                                Hunting – Ballistic Shot
                                Rogue – Sleeping Arms
                                Warrior – Provoke

                                • Anonymous

                                  10 Jun 2018 16:05  

                                  I tried attacking him after he summoned cache, and he ignored it. Said "I am healed, whole, I am Xhaxh!" and disappeared.

                                  • Anonymous

                                    30 May 2018 23:35  

                                    Free cheese: Destroy the unholy altar (74 HP) during the fight. It happened to be in the line of my laser ray and Xhaxh automatically died from full HP

                                    • Anonymous

                                      28 May 2018 22:27  

                                      If you convo freeze him just after he unearths his soul jar, you can have another character smash it and he yell, "So, close...!"

                                      • Anonymous

                                        15 May 2018 18:47  

                                        At the third encounter near the fountain -- try teleporting him away from the blood as soon as he summons the treasure box. He will immediately become hostile & you can kill him for the exp but the best part is HE DOESN'T SUMMON THE HEARTS!

                                        • Anonymous

                                          30 Apr 2018 01:59  

                                          Good information but I dislike that this write-up is heavily biased towards min-maxing. Make choices that best suit your playstyle, there's no need to abuse game mechanics.

                                          Yes I know I can probably change it but I'd rather complain.

                                          • Anonymous

                                            28 Apr 2018 15:18  

                                            This walkthrough is really not accurate :( I couldn't give him any Source, and when I let him live after he killed the child, he just gave me some junk and disappeared - I couldn't kill him and couldn't enter the tomb.

                                            • Anonymous

                                              13 Apr 2018 14:54  

                                              In my case I opened some jars in the main room, the skulls woke up and started the fight, but in the middle of the battle I hit that was sleeping with a fireball, he woke up hostile and only attacked my mage, so I used the fake death skill, the fight ended and started again without any dialogue, then in the forest he did not appear where he should. 8(

                                              • Anonymous

                                                01 Apr 2018 12:39  

                                                You can no longer kill him after he spawns the chest. He will ignore you and teleport away regardless of how much damage you deal.

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