Matt Bird writes all sorts of nonsense, but he dedicates a large chunk of his time to writing game walkthroughs.
Despite coming from a literal den of serpents - and initially seeming a little shifty herself - Rya the Scout is a girl with a heart of gold. Innocent of her adoptive mother's true intentions, Rya scours the Lands Between for people who can help Volcano Manor prosper, in defiance of the Erdtree. Rya has a little storyline you can see through, and unlike a lot of NPCs in Elden Ring, hers can end somewhat happily. Emphasis on can.
This guide will take you through Rya's questline in Elden Ring. There are a few ways this can turn out, depending on your decisions, so don't proceed through the quest without fully exploring your options.
Step One - Meet Rya
If you've been following the questline of Patches, you'll hear about Rya once he moves to Liurnia of the Lakes. Otherwise, you can just go looking for Rya. She's standing in a stone pavilion just north of the Laskyar Ruins in the south of Liurnia of the Lakes. If you spoke to Patches about her, you'll find her a very short trip to the east of the Scenic Isle Site of Grace where he's camped.
Speak to Rya and she'll meekly tell you that a thug has stolen a necklace meant for her mistress. Agree to get it back.
Step Two - Retrieve the Necklace
The aforementioned thug is Blackguard Big Boggart, the owner of Boilprawn Shack. You'll find Boilprawn Shack to the northwest of Rya's little pavilion. Big Boggart is not particularly friendly, but he'll offer to deal with the player. Accept and you can purchase Rya's Necklace from him for 1,000 Runes.
You can, if you wish, kill Big Boggart instead, and save yourself the Runes. He shows up again on his own little journey, however, so you may want to spare him. After you've purchased the necklace you can buy Boiled Prawns from Big Boggart, and buying at least one will earn his trust, as well as the Spread Out Gesture.
Return to Rya and hand over the necklace. She'll formally introduce herself as a servant of Volcano Manor, and will give you a Volcano Manor Invitation. Speak to her again and she'll tell you of two ways to reach the Altus Plateau, placing emphasis on ruins in the north that will let you scale the cliffs. She's speaking of the Ruin-Strewn Precipice, though you can use either method for reaching Altus Plateau.
Step Three - Altus Plateau
Make your way up to the Altus Plateau. Rya will be waiting for you, and will offer you her hand. Taking it will whisk you off to Volcano Manor to meet with her mistress. There are two potential locations on the Altus Plateau to meet Rya:
- If you used the Grand Lift of Dectus to ascend you'll find Rya at the top of the lift. If you didn't trigger this part of Rya's quest before first using the lift you may need to go back to the bottom and use it again before she'll appear.
- Otherwise, you'll find Rya at the Lux Ruins. They're located right beside the Erdtree-Gazing Hill Site of Grace, north along the cliffs from the Grand Lift of Dectus. You'll come right by here if you used the Ruin-Strewn Precipice to reach the Altus Plateau.
Step Four - Volcano Manor
Upon arrival in Volcano Manor you can speak to Tanith, the mistress of the manor. If you accept her invitation to join the Volcano Manor family you'll be given a Drawing-Room Key. Tanith will also begin to give you assassination quests, and you'll need to pursue other Tarnished throughout the world.
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You'll find Rya in a room down the hall from Tanith, accessible via the key. Also here is the first letter containing an assassination target. It will point you to Old Knight Istvan, located just north of the Warmaster's Shack in Limgrave. Interact with the invasion sign just south of the large coliseum to fight Istvan. Killing him will earn you the Scaled Set and, when you speak to Tanith again, the Magma Shot Incantation.
If you check the doors on the right side of the hallway in Volcano Manor after completing this quest you'll find Rya... or Zorayas, rather... in the middle room. This is her true form. Exhaust her dialogue, then speak to Tanith about her to hear a little more about Zorayas' origins. You may need to reload Volcano Manor to make Zorayas appear.
Step Five - Volcano Manor Dungeon
Complete two of Tanith's requests, then speak to Zorayas again. She'll claim to have heard something slithering into the room next to hers, and it didn't come out again. Interesting.
If you check out the room just down the hall from Zorayas' you'll find it empty, save for a corpse near the back-right wall. Touching the wall will open a doorway into the back rooms and passages of Volcano Manor, which ultimately lead to the area's sizable dungeon. Proceed through here until you reach the Prison Town Church Site of Grace and open the door leading outside.
Return to Zorayas and tell her what you've found. She's flabbergasted, and wonders what this means for her. The quest won't proceed any further, however, until you've made it to the Godskin Noble boss at the Temple of Eiglay. Once you've defeated the boss you'll find a Serpent's Amnion on the main altar. Take this and hand it over to Zorayas for another revelation.
Step Six - The Choice
Continue through the Volcano Manor dungeon until you find an Iron Virgin out on the lava. Jump into a window behind and on the right of the Iron Virgin to escape it, then carry on down the next path through the closed door. Past a Serpent-Man and an Albinauric you'll be in a room with a darkened lift. Ride the lift down, but jump off prematurely, as there's another chamber just beneath the upper room. Go through a window in this room to find yourself under a bridge. On your left is a doorway into a tiny chamber...
... and Zorayas is in here. Speak to her and she will, in despair, ask you to kill her. You have two options:
- Kill her. If you do this Zorayas will drop Daedicar's Woe, and her questline will end.
- Don't kill her. If you leave Zorayas you can find her here again later, after you've defeated Rykard, Lord of Blasphemy and emptied out Volcano Manor. She realizes you won't kill her. Reload the area (saving, quitting, and reloading works) and Zorayas will be gone, leaving behind Daedicar's Woe and Zorayas's Letter. Read the letter for a happier ending to Zorayas' quest.
Either way, Zorayas' story comes to a close here. Be sure to get Zorayas into the small room before you kill Rykard, or you'll risk her leaving Volcano Manor altogether, ending the quest prematurely.
Optional - Tonic of Forgetfulness
You have an alternative to completing Zorayas' questline. If you speak to Tanith after giving Zorayas the Serpent's Amnion she will be distressed over what has happened. She'll give you a Tonic of Forgetfulness, which she tells you to give to Zorayas. This will wipe out all memory of what Zorayas discovered.
Speak to Zorayas in the small room in the dungeon and you'll have the option to give her the tonic. If you do she'll fall into a deep sleep. Return to the rest of the dungeon and complete it, all the way up to defeating Rykard and clearing everyone out of the manor, including Tanith. Once the manor is empty Zorayas will appear there, wondering where everybody went.
Note that the only way to see this optional end to Zorayas' story is to get Zorayas into her little dungeon hideaway before completing all of Tanith's assassination quests. If you clear all three Tanith will offer to send you to Rykard's room, and this conversation option will override all others.