|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?
- Desiccated Undead
- Find an ornate skull embedded in the wall, which seems to be missing one of its eyes.
- Find an unusual gem in Wrecker's Cave or lockpick the skull.
- Place the gem inside the skull to reveal a secret passageway with a hatch leading underground.
- Solve the puzzle underground (see Pressure Plate Solution)
- Set the lich free.
- Let him feed or kill him.
- Meet the lich and watch him reclaim his soul jar.
Beneath Mordus' house, a secret passage can be found by lockpicking an 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 unlocks the chest to right of the table.
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?
If you did not fight the Magisters and their hounds at the west gate of Driftwood, you will find them dead after releasing the Lich (found in DE).
Once you set him loose, you will encounter him again in Cloisterwood (at the bottom blue flag shown in the map below X:224 Y:192). 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 X: 260 Y: 255.)
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. In order to initiate combat here, you must cast a spell on him or some other hostile attack action right after he spawns the chest -- there will be no further dialog or opportunity to attack him, because he teleports away after the cutscene. 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.
If you Attack him before he picks up his Soul Jar, Combat starts, with him Cursing you, but his Soul Jar can be destroyed, which has only 5 Hp, with any attack or skill and kill him, with a 2 characters while he still talks. All loot and exp are still the same as the other way.
- 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. (Reduced to 3750 per parasitic heart in DE)
- 4175XP and a chest with good loot upon completion of the quest.