You ignore the man, clearly a crackpot of the highest degree, and run after the brute in the horned helmet.

The path up the mountain is snowy and treacherous, and as high up the mountain as you feel you've come, there's still no sign of him. There's a large stone to the side of the path, and you decide it's a good a place as any to take a small break and catch your breath for a moment. After all, the man ahead of you is certainly just as tired by now, and probably doing the same at a similar stone just a pebble's throw up the path.

You lean down and put your hands against the front of your thighs while you gasp for breath. The air is much thinner here than you're used to. Soon, you hear footsteps. You jerk your head upward, hoping to find the man in the helmet; maybe you passed him in the snow without realizing. Sadly, it's just a man in torn brown monk's robes. He has a basket in his hand with a single azure flower at its base.

"Greetings stranger," he speaks in a low, steady voice as he approaches. "How fare thee?"

You look at him blankly, still panting and exhausted. How does it look like I'm doing! you're tempted to yell. Instead you stay as quiet as your heavy breaths allow.

"I'm a pilgrim of this path to High Hrothgar," he says, "in need of four more Blue Mountain Flowers for my monasteries' ritual on the morrow. Might I ask your assistance in this matter? You seem lost. Perhaps I could point you in the right direction for your troubles."

Accept the quest and help the monk.

Catch your breath and continue up the mountain.

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