Cicero, one of the most iconic characters in Skyrim, has an intriguing backstory alongside his offbeat personality. His fool-based persona hides a deadly past, which could prove useful should you choose to keep Cicero around as a follower.
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Who Is Cicero?
A diminutively-sized Imperial man, Cicero doesn’t initially appear to be much of a threat. On your first encounter with Cicero, you’d be forgiven for thinking he was simply an unstable jester. In large part, that’s actually true. Cicero’s grip on his sanity is highly questionable by the time the Dragonborn crosses his path in Skyrim.
However, underneath the unhinged chatter, Cicero is deeply committed to his primary purpose in life. As the Keeper of the mysterious Dark Brotherhood, he’s responsible for looking after of the Night Mother’s body and casket. Prior to this, he was an extensively experienced and lethal assassin who carried out numerous contracts for the Dark Brotherhood.
Cicero’s dedication to the Night Mother—the immortal spirit and figurehead of the Dark Brotherhood—is what makes him so deadly. Before adopting the jester persona, Cicero was a highly skilled assassin. However, the amount of time he’s spent alone with just the whispering corpse of the Night Mother for company hasn’t exactly helped him stay sane.
His murderous instability often peaks when he believes that someone has disrespected or betrayed the Night Mother or the Dark Brotherhood. Having followed the deadly path of the Dark Brotherhood since childhood, Cicero is a well-trained killer with absolutely no morals when it comes to stealth assassination or even outright murder in broad daylight.
Finding Cicero’s Secret Past
Whilst Cicero was always a dealer of death, he wasn’t always quite as mentally unstable as he is in Skyrim. One way to learn more about Cicero’s chequered history is by collecting the six volumes of Cicero’s Journal.
These lore books will give you a more in-depth retelling of Cicero’s life before his descent into madness. Each volume details accounts of Cicero’s exploits within the Dark Brotherhood, as well as how he came to become responsible for the Night Mother’s care.
Interestingly, they share a genuine passion for his work as an assassin, and his mixed feelings upon being appointed Keeper of the Night Mother.
You’ll find each of the six volumes of Cicero’s journal in the Dark Brotherhood Sanctuary near Falkreath and the Dawnstar Sanctuary. Reading them in sequential order will reveal the character’s gradual descent into madness.
The Big Dilemma in Skyrim: Kill Cicero or Not?
During the main Dark Brotherhood quest line, you’ll be presented with a moral dilemma. Without spoiling events for those yet to play Skyrim, there’s an opportunity to decide Cicero’s fate once and for all.
Whether or not Cicero lives or dies during the course of the Dark Brotherhood quests is entirely up to you. His criminal past, homicidal tendencies, and riddle-like dialogue might be too much for you to endure.
On the other hand, Cicero is a highly skilled and valuable companion follower to have around in Skyrim. His background as a talented assassin gives him the upper hand in many combat and stealth-based situations.
If you can overlook his murderous desire, you might want to spare Cicero for the potential follower perks.
Who Is Cicero’s Voice Actor Skyrim?
Fans of Ratchet & Clank might recognize the eccentric assassin’s voice actor. Andy Morris is the voice of Cicero in Skyrim. He also played the part of another iconic villain in the Ratchet & Clank games. Cicero’s voice actor is the vocal talent behind the tyrant Emperor Percival Tachyon, who’s no stranger to murderous tendencies himself, albeit on a grander scale.
Skyrim players often have mixed opinions on Cicero’s voice, as it’s definitely one of the most unique among the game’s NPCs. The chaotic, squeaky yet gravelly tones delivered through his dialogue truly convey the essence of Cicero’s madness effectively.
However, they’re not to every player’s taste! It’s worth spending a bit of time with Cicero before deciding if you want to keep him around as a follower after the events of the Dark Brotherhood questline.
Typical Cicero Quotes in Skyrim
One thing to know about Cicero is he’s got some rather unique dialogue to go with his highly original voice. He’s quite unlike most other inhabitants in Skyrim in terms of how you can interact with him. You’ll find that his responses to conversations and questions are much more varied, if a bit unhinged.
He’s also got some interesting idle commentary to pick up on while you’re exploring. Some typical Cicero quotes are as follows.
“Need to sharpen my blade…make it shiny, gleamy, and oh so deadly.”
“Must oil Mother soon…get all the hard-to-reach places.”
“Oh if I chance to see a cat, I’ll feed its corpse to my pet rat.”
“Madness is merry, and merriment’s might, when the jester comes calling with his knife in the night.”
“Riften. Cicero likes Riften. Cheats and ruffians and cutthroats abound. Finally, some fun.”
Can You Marry Cicero in Skyrim?
You can’t marry Cicero in Skyrim, unlike many other follower companions. However, if you’re determined to pledge your undying love to Skyrim’s colorful killer, you can install the Cicero Marriage Mod from Nexus Mods for PC.
At present though, this only appears to be available for the original Skyrim and not Skyrim Special Edition. So, unless you’re still running the base game, it’s more or less impossible to marry Cicero in Skyrim.
However, if you’ve got romance on your mind, there are lots of other NPCs that you can marry in Skyrim. As long as you’ve raised your relationship with them enough, you’ll be able to make a long-term commitment.
All in all, Cicero is a fascinating character in Skyrim. His background and traits make him a standout inhabitant of Tamriel’s northernmost province. Although he’s a polarizing character with a total lack of ethics and some highly questionable behavior, Cicero’s unique characterization and compelling storyline remain a key part of Skyrim’s longevity.