The player character is a prisoner being led to an Imperial execution in Helgen. Alduin unexpectedly interrupts the procession, destroying the town before the player can be executed. The player escapes in the chaos and journeys to the city of Whiterun to request aid against the dragon threat. After slaying a different dragon that attacks nearby, the player absorbs the dragon’s soul which grants them the ability to perform a shout. The city’s guards inform the player that they must be Dragonborn. The player is summoned to meet with the Greybeards, an order of monks who live in seclusion. The Greybeards train the player in using shouts and inform the player of their role in stopping Alduin. The player learns that Skyrim’s civil war is the last in a sequence of prophetic events foretold by the Elder Scrolls, which also predicted the return of Alduin.