Durnehviir is a dragon that inhabits the Soul Cairn. You can learn one word of the Soul Tear shout from him each time you summon him with his shout. He cannot be truly killed, as he will reconstitute himself in the Soul Cairn upon being sufficiently injured. His name is formed from the dragon words Dur Neh Viir ("Curse Never Dying"), and can be roughly translated as "Cursed with Undeath".
Durnehviir took part in many battles against other dragons for control of the skies. While the others perished in battle, he sought other means to become dominant and delved into necromancy. He made a deal with the Ideal Masters, promising that he would guard Valerica until her death in exchange for the power to summon very powerful undead armies. The Ideal Masters, however, neglected to tell him that she was immortal, and so he was forced to serve them for all time.
You will encounter Durnehviir in the Soul Cairn while attempting to rescue Valerica along with Serana. Upon his defeat, Durnehviir recognizes your strength, and names you "Qahnaarin", or "Vanquisher". Durnehviir then asks you to summon him in Tamriel. Because his body has been in the Soul Cairn for so long, he can never truly leave it without dying, but summoning him to Tamriel will increase his strength so that he can temporarily leave to aid you in battle.
- When not fighting, Durnehviir will simply circle around the player from the air.
- In combat, Durnehviir will use several shouts: Drain Vitality, Frost Breath, and Soul Cairn Summon, a shout unique to Durnehviir that summons a boneman, a mistman, and a wrathman all at once.
- After his defeat in the Boneyard, Durnehviir can be found atop a dilapidated, non-functional word wall to the left of the Boneyard entrance. He offers no further dialogue options at this point.
- When you question him regarding him referring to you as Qahnaarin, depending on your progress in the main questline, Durnehviir will have different comments about naming you Vanquisher.
|Main Quest Progress
|Dragon Rising not completed
||"Forgive me, my instinct was to grant you this title. I am uncertain why. Perhaps one day it will become clear to both of us."
|The Way of the Voice completed
||"You are the Dovahkiin, the Dragonborn. You may not be one of us in body, but you have earned the right to bear this title."
||"Even in the Soul Cairn, the defeat of the World Eater has reached my ears, Dovahkiin. You may not be dovah, but the defeat of Alduin earns you the right of title."
- Durnehviir may become a permanent follower if you summon him in Blackreach and then immediately exit to the surface via one of the Dwemer lifts.