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I've been toying with the idea of creating a high elf who pledges allegiance to the Aldmeri Dominion. Is this possible? It seems like they are enemies of both the Empire and the Stormcloaks. So, probably not, but I thought I'd ask.

N.B.: Answers will likely contain plot spoilers.

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I think they are an ally of convenience for the Empire at the moment, but the exact reason why (if its true) escapes me at the moment. –  Rapida Dec 2 '11 at 2:04
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The Thalmor want to keep the Empire weak - and for the moment, that means keeping the Civil War in Skyrim going as long as possible. There's notes that allude to that when you ransack their embassy as part of the main quest. –  Raven Dreamer Dec 2 '11 at 2:17
    
I think it's a bit of a stretch to call them allies. TES-V is set only 25-30 years after the Great War between the Dominion and the Empire. –  aearon Dec 2 '11 at 2:21
    
Agreed. I've run into a few Justicars asserting that the Aldmeri Dominion are the rightful rulers of all Tamriel. They see themselves more as "conquerors" than "allies". –  Dave Sherohman Dec 2 '11 at 15:17

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

No, it's not possible.

The bigger thing I'd worry about is that the Thalmor have a habit of winding up on everyone's bad side. The Thalmor have an embassy and a keep up north, a few agents scattered about (some giving minor quests), and some in the countryside that will attack you if messed with or even on sight. There are only a few named NPCs, including an advisor at the College of Winterhold, an emissary and socialite, and an inquisitor. You can, of course, enforce things like the ban on Talos worship and refuse to help some people going against them, but the Thalmor don't have a proper questline.

As for avoiding fighting them, it's a little inevitable (main/guild quest related):

You have to infiltrate the embassy as part of the main quest line. Sneaking is actually pretty difficult here. I might just be missing something, but my solution was to kill everyone. Sorry, Thalmor, but I think Talos is a pretty cool guy. As for Ancano, he doesn't turn out to be a nice guy, either. And certain quests just sometimes have you fighting Thalmor for reasons that aren't well explained at the time. Working with the Blades is both verboten by the White-Gold Concordat and required by the main quest.

The gist of the above is that you can invent your own reasons to explain a few clashes with your colleagues, but you might need pretty high Persuade (IRL).

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+1, there is no way to escape the solitude main quest without killing at least a few thalmor. –  z ' Dec 2 '11 at 14:00
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Thanks. Sounds like a good idea for a mod/DLC. –  aearon Dec 2 '11 at 15:56

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