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No better friend than one sharing good drugs.
~ Maneha

Secrets of the Tacan is a side quest and companion quest for Zahua in The White March - Part II.

Triggering the quest might be a little unorthodox, as it can only happen once The White March - Part II starts. You need to talk to Zahua and exhaust all his dialogue options again, especially the ones concerning the fate of the Tacan. Then, you need to either rest, change locations, and/or restart the game (scripts are capricious beasts) and you should be able to ask him again about his vow to liberate his people and then about the way you can help him.


The secret of becoming an enlightened Nalpazca warrior, the anitlei, died with Ixepillo. If Zahua can recover this knowledge, he may yet be able to free his people from slavery. He wants to travel to the Whitestone Hollow, where he felt his presence. Upon arrival, he will request that the Watcher and he consume some "special herbs" together so that they can pursue a spirit lion he believes may represent his dead master Ixepillo.


  • Activate the quest by exhausting all dialogue options with Zahua and resting, changing locations, or restarting the game to cause him to have something to discuss with you. Then agree to help and travel to the Whitestone Hollow. Upon entry, Zahua will spot a spirit lion and note that it's a sign, as it was his master's symbol.
  • He will offer drugs to everyone in the party. The responses are... Quite amusing:
    • Devil of Caroc: "This ain't fair."
    • Durance: "There are simpler ways to understand the world, monk. A single stroke of my staff would do. But very well."
    • Edér: "I'll try anything once. Bunch of times if it's good."
    • Kana: "Feels like we're back in the lore college."
    • Grieving Mother: ""One must seek insight where one can..."
    • Hiravias: "I can't believe you've been holding out on me this long."
    • Maneha: "No better friend than one sharing good drugs."
    • Pallegina: "Di verus? You can't be serious... "
    • Sagani: "Don't tell my kids."
    • Aloth: "Maybe I could just inhale a few of the spores."
  • Upon consumption of the mixture, the Whitestone Hollow gets a nice change of color and you will see a spirit lion in the distance. Follow it. The first stop is by the stone steps in the northwest. Talk to the spirit. It will ask you to retrieve a gem from a pedestal on top of the plateau. Avoid the blooming fields (they're traps) and collect the sentimental gem. Return it to the spirit and watch it as it cannot collect it. This will enlighten Zahua as to the grip the past has on him.
  • The next vision occurs immediately, showing an old shaman hunched over a translucent table. This is Zahua's memory of the shaman's prophecy that made him Ixepillo's student. Once it expires, you are immediately attacked by a giant dank spore, ice troll, wisps, and in general, you're going to have a very bad trip for a bit.
  • Immediately after, Zahua will confide that the vision may have made him proud and foolhardy. This is the first of two of conversations that determine his ending, affecting his Persistence and Legacy traits (see his endings for details).
    • "The Tacan aren't defeated yet." adds +1 to Persistence
    • "A source of hope is never a bad thing." has no effect.
    • "You may liberate your people yet." adds +2 to Persistence.
    • "You let your pride get the better of you." removes -2 from Persistence.
  • Backtrack and continue northeast to run into the haggard man. He will ask you to bring him some water from the waterfall to the east, as he cannot drink it himself. Interact with the waterfall. The water will seem to boil and you'll need Constitution 13, Resolve 18, or Perception 15 to resist the illusion. Resisting is worth a sapphire and two topaz gems.
  • Return to the man. Master Ixepillo will spawn after the haggard man will realize he's unable to drink. Ixepillo will promise to reveal the secrets... Only to crack and fade away into dust. Zahua will be heartbroken as the wind carries the remains of his master off into the distance. Your responses determine Zahua's Legacy attitude:
    • "Perhaps it's time to let them go." removes -2 from Legacy.
    • "We aren't done here yet. There must be something more worth learning here." adds +1 to Legacy.
    • "There is more to the Tacan than Ixepillo's teachings." adds +2 to Legacy.
    • "It hardly seems to matter. the Tacan no longer exist." removes -2 from Legacy and Persistence.
  • Continue to the opposite side of the pond. A spirit antelope will appear on the little inlet. It's hurt and will ask you for the repellent tree sap found near the tree to the north. You can ask Durance to heal the creature, to get a rather nasty exchange between Zahua and Durance:
Items in italics are quoted directly from the game.

Watcher: "Durance, you heal this animal."

Durance: "I could heal this beast, Watcher, but not in the way that the monk would want."

Zahua: "I would ask neither kind of healing, as neither has any lesson to offer. Keep to your own trial, Durance, and I will keep to mine."

Durance: "Oh, I wouldn't dream of interfering. I await the sound of broken bonds or a broken back. There is a music to both, if you listen for it."

  • Collect the sap on the opposite side of the lake, by the cave. Return to witness the antelope, dead against four wolves. After Zahua reacts, Chieftain Ehuilia will spawn among them. After a short conversation, he will turn into a werewolf and attack. Defeat him and talk to Zahua. The conversation has no effect on Zahua's attitude.
  • Finally, the lake will drain and you'll be able to access the central island. Enter the ring to witness Zahua's last meeting with Nahualtia and attempt to incite a revolt among the Tacan - realizing that they were broken by their slavery and their time has ended. How you react to him accepting that the Tacan have died is the final conversation that affects his attitude:
    • "The Tacan lived their time and made their mark on the world. They need nothing more from you." removes -3 from Persistence and adds +3 to Legacy.
    • "What you do from here on out is for your soul alone." removes -3 from Legacy and Persistence.
    • "You are the last of the Tacan. What you do now, you do in their memory." adds +3 to Persistence and removes -3 from Legacy.
    • "The culture of the Tacan and their Nalpazca warriors still exists within you. You can still carry it forward." adds +3 to Persistence and Legacy.
  • The quest ends with Zahua coming to terms with his past and becoming the Anitlei.



ID Objectives
0 Secrets of the Tacan
10000 Zahua has requested that we consume some "special herbs" together in Whitestone Hollow so that we can pursue a spirit lion he believes may represent his dead master Ixepillo.

The secret of becoming an enlightened Nalpazca warrior, the anitlei, died with Ixepillo. If Zahua can recover this knowledge, he may yet be able to free his people from slavery.

Alternate descriptions
40001 Zahua has asked that we travel into the wilderness east of Stalwart, where he encountered a place that resonated with his soul. He hopes there might be answers there that might help him fulfill his vow to free his peopel from slavery.
1 Search for and pursue the spirit lion.
10001 The lion seems to be leading us somewhere. We must catch up with it if we are to find answers.
3 Retrieve the spirit's gem.
10003 The lion led us to a spirit that is trying to retrieve a gem it left on a pedestal nearby.

The bodies around the pedestal, which would seem to all belong to the spirit, may indicate the retrieval is less simple than it appears.

20000 I have recovered the gem from the pedestal.
4 Draw sap to help protect the antelope.
10004 We encountered a wounded antelope that would make an easy target for predators.

There is a great tree to the north whose sap gives off a smell that supposedly keeps other animals at bay.

Coated with this sap, the antelope stands a better chance at surviving until its wounds heal.

20001 I was able to draw the sap that the antelope requested.
5 Fill the waterskin with water from the waterfall.
10005 A man suffering from great thirst begged us to bring him water from a nearby waterfall, claiming that no other water will slake his thirst.
20002 The waterfall appeared to boil my flesh as I attempted to fill the waterskin, but later proved to be an illusion. I have the water the man asked me for.
9 Explore the island.
10009 The pond at the center of Whitestone Hollow drained, revealing a small island in its center. We should see what lies in store for Zahua there.
11 Travel to Whitestone Hollow.
10011 Zahua mentioned a place called Whitestone Hollow east of Stalwart that he felt had some spiritual significance to him.

He requested that we explore it.

End states
Yes Success
30000 Zahua seems to have freed himself from the grips of a past he has denied for many years.
No Failure - Left
30001 Zahua has left the party in pursuit of his quest, and I can no longer help him.
No Failure - died
30002 Zahua has died with his journey unfulfilled.