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I am trying to complete the quest "Of Flickering Hearts" and the "Symbol of Death". However, the map marks the location north of the Vergen, and the only route I have found there takes me through the battle-field, and I get killed easily there.

Is there another route which I am missing?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

To complete of Flickering Hearts/Succubus you need the surgical instruments (you can buy them from a woman merchant) and you need to get to the catacombs and inspect a freshly dead body, there is a way to get there without crossing the battlefield (hint: look for a way of crossing the river, take the exit from Vergen past Iorveth's base). Once you have found and inspected the dead body talk to Dandelion.

You can do the Symbol of Death in the Catacombs at the same time (hint: go to the lower level and find the ghost of Ekhart Henessa).

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