| ||See me smiling? I'm dead serious.|| |
| - Dijkstra to Geralt|
Sigismund Dijkstra (born 1219) was the head of Redanian Intelligence. He was a physically imposing man; nearly seven feet tall and bald, with a rather noticeable stomach that was said to give the impression of a scrubbed pig.
Preferring bright colors and flamboyant dress, he didn't dress the least bit like a spy. However, he was an exceptionally clever man, having studied at Oxenfurt Academy, and was said to be very influential in Redania. While he was referred to as a count in public, this was merely a cover that King Vizimir II ordered him to use so nobody would know that Dijkstra was a mere commoner.
Letter to Vizimir
As a minor spy in the Secret Service's Novigrad cell, Sigismund somehow managed to obtain documents proving Michael de Noailles' incompetence and the tragic situation of the state infiltrated by foreign intelligence. In 1248 he wrote a letter to King Vizimir II, addressed For Your Royal Eyes Only. The King, enraged, ordered to imprison Count de Noailles and elevated Dijkstra to the position of the Royal Security Assignee. In a few years Dijkstra managed to overhaul the Service's structures, replacing moles with faithful men and expanding the area of operations from Kovir to Nilfgaardian Empire. He moved his quarters to Oxenfurt, to the rented University's rooms he called "Faculty of Most Contemporary History". Around this period he romanced Philippa Eilhart, who would often cooperate with the spymaster since then.
Northern War I
The biggest challenge Dijkstra faced was the Nilfgaardian Military Intelligence. The web collaborators among state officials and aristocracy, disposing of enormous sums of money and hard to infiltrate was barely touched by his agents prior to the Northern War I. And then, just after reports from Cintra ceased to reach Oxenfurt quarters, the Nilfgaardian agents unleashed hell in Redania. Military warehouses were burned, cavalry horses were poisoned, many commanders were found dead with knives in throats. Sigismund Dijkstra, the masterspy, had to learn a hard lesson in humility from his opponent, Vattier de Rideaux.
The startle did not last long. Shortly after the initial shock, the Service's agents in all the Realms started to hit on persons for long suspected of collaboration with the Empire. The traitors' blood flowed like rivers, though mistakes were made and certain innocents, especially nonhumans, were killed as well. The few Nilfgaardian informants who managed to avoid Drakenborg fled to Kovir and Hengfors, but even there the knife and the garrote awaited them.
Before Dijkstra could trace the traitors among nobles however, the war ended and terms of the truce required to end the bloodshed. Unable to eliminate the core of imperial spy web in Redania, he was back at the starting point.
Some time after the war, he recruited Dandelion as his informant and asked Yennefer to protect the bard when he was captured by Rience in a town near Bleobheris. The sorceress saved Dandelion and ordered him to hide under Dijkstra's wing. Later, Sigismund managed to calm the tension when Geralt and Olsen killed Temerian agents who, while they were legit agents, had at the time been acting on their own in pursuit of Geralt and Ciri to try and claim Rience's reward for the pair. Together with Philippa, the spymaster asked Dandelion about Geralt's current whereabouts; Dijkstra was surprised when Philippa mentioned Ciri as well, perceiving it as a hasty move.
In 1267 he learned that traitors were active again and sent word via a royal messenger, Aplegatt, to inform King Demavend III of Aedirn to not go through with a staged attack as now Nilfgaard knew about their plans. However, he learned too late this message was never delivered as the messenger had been killed in an isolated incident.
Later that year, in late June, he joined Philippa on Thanedd Isle as part of their plan to take out the Nilfgaardian supporters before they could put their own coup in action. At the banquet he talked for some time with Geralt before heading off. The next day, in the early hours just before dawn, he began to help Keira Metz round up the Nilfgaardian supporters with the assistance of his soldiers. As they were arresting Artaud Terranova, Geralt stumbled upon them and Dijkstra had the witcher detained before discussing with the mages on what to do before taking Geralt to Philippa to decide. As he felt Geralt wouldn't cause them too much trouble, Dijkstra didn't bind the witcher, which he would regret later.
On the way, Dijkstra, in his ever sarcastic demeanor, informed Geralt what was going on and asked where Yennefer was. Geralt, not truly understanding the gravity of the situation, told him last he checked she was sound asleep in bed, pissing the spymaster off as the plan had been only for Nilfgaardian supporters to go to bed while the rest made their move (not realizing Yennefer, like many others, had actually remained neutral). After talking with Philippa, she gave Dijkstra part of their deal: a list that'd been on Vilgefortz that had names of Redanians who'd sold out to Nilfgaard. Satisfied with the list, Dijkstra then had Geralt follow him through the towers, intending to head to Loxia as the spymaster knew, despite rumors, Ciri, the sole heir and princess of Cintra, was alive and in the school, but the rectoress would not hand Ciri over to anyone except Geralt.
When it became clear to Geralt that the spymaster planned to use Ciri as a political tool, intending to send her to Redania's capital, Tretogor, the witcher punched the spymaster and Dijkstra, along with the few soldiers he had with him, tried to fight the witcher but were all knocked out. Dijkstra then threatened to get his soldiers from the ship but Geralt, intent on finding Yennefer and Ciri without distractions, summarily broke one of the spymaster's ankles, causing the man to howl and faint from the pain.
First Phases of Northern War II
It was later revealed that the previous night, King Vizimir had been assassinated and, with the start of the Second Northern War, the country was ruled by a Regency Council headed by Dijkstra and Philippa (even though technically Queen Hedwig was supposed to be the ruler). Incensed by the failed coup on Thanedd and how quickly Nilfgaard was taking over other kingdoms, Dijkstra began to hang people left and right in Redania, though he wasn't able to walk for two weeks, and even then required help from Philippa to do so.
A few weeks later he was informed by one of his men that Geralt was recovering in Brokilon. However, Dijkstra ordered them to leave the witcher alone, though that wasn't to say he forgave the witcher for breaking his ankle, he just didn't have the time and was professional enough to not use his own men to settle a private matter. He then sent out correspondence to Philippa, still intent on finding information that Yennefer had sided with Nilfgaard. He was later visited by the Nilfgaardian ambassador, Shilard Fitz-Oesterlen, and the two conversed about politics before turning to what they both really wanted: Dijkstra believed Nilfgaard was hiding Vilgefortz and Yennefer and wanted them, while Shilard believed Redania had Cahir, a Nilfgaardian knight that was wanted for treason. However, neither actually had the people in question and Shilard left. Dijkstra then sent another letter to Philippa, piecing together that the earlier news they heard about Nilfgaard having Ciri was false, or rather, a fake Ciri, meaning the real one was still out there somewhere. To confirm these suspicions, he later received important information from a prisoner that was about to be hanged, confirming that it was a fake Ciri.
Still intending to find Vilgefortz, as now Dijkstra and Philippa believed it was likely Ciri was with the rogue sorcerer, the spymaster put Redania's Secret Service to use and found two of Vilgefortz's hangouts, but no sorcerer or Ciri. However, they did find evidence that Vilgefortz had been experimenting on pregnant women, killing them in the process.
Late Autumn Armistice
Later, in late October, he made his way to Lan Exeter, the winter capital of Kovir and Poviss, to try and ask for a loan of a million bizants to raise an army in time for spring, when Nilfgaard would start up its assault on the North once more. However, Kovir's king, Esterad Thyssen, refused on the grounds of the kingdom's neutrality and an old agreement that meant he couldn't back Nilfgaard's enemies. Despite this, the king's wife, Zuleyka, gave him advice that showed him a loophole and was thus able to supply the spymaster indirectly. Dijkstra, having struck up an unlikely friendship with Esterad, ended up staying a little bit longer and the two had philosophical debates. On their last conversation before Dijkstra left, Esterad warned the spymaster to stop all the bloodshed in Redania, as it'd bring nothing but assassins after him sooner or later.
Following the meeting with Esterad, Sigismund had growing suspicion towards Eilhart and her close circle of sorceresses at Montecalvo During the autumn and winter, apart from preparations to raise troops and in secret from Philippa, Dijkstra and his personal assistant Ori Reuven aided Jacques de Aldersberg in his mission to reform Order of the White Rose into Order of the Flaming Rose with aim to balance the rising position of sorceresses and aid the forces fighting Nilfgaard with a strong knightly order. Dijkstra was aware of the dangers that hosting the Order in Redania might bring, thus ensuring that its headquarters would lie south to the Pontar, in Temeria. It was also apparently during this period when he, under the alias of Sigi Reuven, co-founded the Syndicate, an underground alliance of criminal bosses and church officials that was to end the period of instability in Novigrad streets. Taking information out of drunken Walter Veritas, he was able to capture and eliminate the Nilfgaardian agent Doadrick Leumaerts and later recruited Walter to the Syndicate.
In January 1268 Dijkstra received a letter from Geralt, informing him that Vilgefortz's hideout was located in Stygga Castle, Ebbing. Unable to operate that far south of the Yaruga, he traded this information to Vattier de Rideaux in exchange for details on Vizimir's assassination learned by Nilfgaardian Intelligence.
Peace of Cintra
As the de factor ruler of Redania, Queen Hedwig, was still indisposed, Dijkstra joined the other kingdoms' rulers in Cintra to discuss the peace terms in April 1268. However, due to being a non-royal, many of the rulers scoffed at him being there and the Hierarch, Cyrus Engelkind Hemmelfart, even noted to himself that they must do away with the spy. After peace was officially declared, a celebration was held in Novigrad and the spy informed Philippa that he'd learned the half-elf that assassinated Vizimir hadn't been acting alone. Sometime later, he walked through Tretogor Castle one last time, saying goodbye to his personal assistant, Ori Reuven, noting that he'd said one word too many to one person too many but, having been tipped off by Vattier de Rideaux and Emhyr var Emreis, knew assassins were coming for him, and fled the country.
He later appeared in Elskerdeg Pass and met Isengrim Faoiltiarna and Boreas Mun, two fugitives on the run for their own reasons. An unlikely party, the three agreed to travel east together, to Zerrikania or Hakland, with Dijkstra taking on the name Sigi Reuven once again.
Return in the North
Sometime later Dijkstra, still using the alias Sigi Reuven, returned to the Northern Kingdoms. He arrived in Novigrad where he bought a bathhouse and completed the Syndicate's code of conduct. In 1272 he and three other most influential gang leaders were known as the Big Four.
After the outbreak of the Third Northern War, Dijkstra, not approving of how Radovid was "destroying" everything his father, Vizimir II, had built up, began to work with the Temerian loyalists Vernon Roche, Ves, and Thaler, in their plan to assassinate King Radovid V and make Temeria a vassal state to Nilfgaard while allowing the rest of the North to be swallowed up by the empire.
If Geralt doesn't complete Reason of State quest (default): The assassination however was never carried out, thus allowing King Radovid to win the war against Nilfgaard and gather again the Northern Kingdoms under the silver eagle blazon. Dijkstra's fate remained unknown.
If Geralt completes Reason of State quest: The assassination was successful but, having despised surrendering Redania in favor of Temeria's semi-independence, the former head spy turned on the Temerians and planned to kill them, as he knew they wouldn't go along with his plans.
- If Geralt defends the Temerians: Dijkstra underestimated Geralt's resolve to remain neutral though, and in turn Dijkstra was summarily killed.
- If Geralt doesn't defend the Temerians: After Roche and the others were all killed, Dijkstra took over Redania, becoming the Chancellor of the country and brought in a new era of manufacturing to the region.
Around late 1270s, King Sigismund refused to attend the wedding of Geralt and Yennefer but sent Sir Matholm as his royal envoy.
Note that the story is non-canon and written before the Saga. Characters here who would later debut in the novels should be viewed as initial prototypes rather than Sapkowski's intentions of how their future would look like.
E3 Demo (2014)
In an E3 demo of The Witcher 3, he was shown to be back in the Northern Kingdoms, having contracted Geralt to hunt down a griffin in Novigrad. In exchange, he would find the whereabouts of an ashen-haired lass. After Geralt returned successfully with the griffin's head, Dijkstra reveals that Ciri was spotted in Velen in the company of a childlike creature named Johnny. He then asked Geralt if the girl is who he thought she was, but the witcher simply doesn't answer and thanks him for the information as he departs his company.
The E3 quest is absent in the full-release version of The Witcher 3.
| ||Sigismund Dijkstra—former Redanian count, one-time chief of that kingdom's special forces, and current crime boss in Novigrad. As he was an important character in the books, we drew on the descriptions of him there as we designed his look for the game. Dijkstra as presented in the books is a spy that goes against most stereotypes we have about that profession. Rather than a thin, rat-like individual with dark eyes staring out of a black hood, he is a strong man of nearly seven feet who prefers richly ornamented, brightly colored garb and hides an astute, enterprising mind under a somewhat sleepy face.|| |
|- The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt Artbook|
In The Witcher 3, Geralt meets the spymaster once more. After his return in the Northern Kingdoms, Dijkstra moved to Novigrad where he apparently approached the criminal underworld of the city, becoming one of the most noted four criminal lords.
- The individual masquerading as Sigi Reuven was in fact none other than Sigismund Dijkstra, the former head of Redanian intelligence and a man Geralt and I had had many dealings with in the past.
- He had fallen out of King Radovid's favor and nothing had been heard of him for many years. Now it seemed he had finally decided to emerge from the shadows, but instead of returning to high political wrangling he dove deep into the criminal underground – and quickly surfaced as one of its leading figures.
- Though he did not show it, in his own way Dijkstra respected Geralt – even though the very thought of their last meeting brought a pained grimace to his face. The two had found themselves standing in each other's way during the coup on Thanedd Island. The stalemate was quickly broken when Geralt summarily broke Dijkstra's leg.
- This spy's life story would make for a postively enthralling adventure tale. A victim of Philippa Eilhart's intrigues, he had been forced to flee Redania at breakneck speed – or have his own neck broken by assassins. For a certain time he sought refuge in far-off lands, but in the end he decided to return to the Free City of Novigrad.
- Well aware of Geralt's extraordinary talents, Dijkstra asked him to help find his stolen treasure. Though Geralt knew the identity of the criminal mastermind responsible, he decided not to divulge this information and set about investigating as if the case were a complete mystery.
- Though the witcher's lips remained tightly sealed regarding my role in the treasure heist, Dijkstra still sniffed out his dishonesty – and made it clear how much he disliked being played for a fool.
- Though Dijkstra did not aid the persecuted mages out of the goodness of his heart, Triss appreciated his support all the same, for it proved vital to the endeavor's success.
- Dijkstra opposed the mage hunts sweeping the city, but for Philippa Eilhart he was willing to make an exception. He had never forgiven his one-time friend for betraying and then trying to kill him. Unfortunately, Geralt needed Philippa alive - and knew how to free her.
- Though Dijkstra craved vengeance, he was willing to resign from his plans in return for valuable information.
- Anyone who thought Dijkstra had broken all ties with the world of political schemers and plotters was sorely mistaken. His great comeback was to be a patriotic act that would free Redania from the rule of a madman – the assassination of King Radovid.
- If Reason of State is completed:
- ...and Geralt intervenes:
- As an experience dragonslayer once commented, more than once heads have only rolled after the dragon's been slain, the mead broken out and the campfire lit, for when it comes time to share the treasure, hunters of beasts often become slayers of men instead. Such was the case after the assassination of Radovid, when Dijkstra tried to renege on the terms of their arrangement and do away with Thaler and Vernon.
- Dijkstra counted on Geralt maintaining witcher neutrality in this matter - a miscalculation which cost him his life.
- ...and Geralt does not intervene:
- As an experience dragonslayer once commented, more than once heads have only rolled after the dragon's been slain, the mead broken out and the campfire lit, for when it comes time to share the treasure, hunters of beasts often become slayers of men instead. Such was the case after the assassination of Radovid, when Dijkstra tried to renege on the terms of their arrangement and do away with his allies, who wanted to negotiate with Nilfgaard.
- With this move the former spy achieved his goal, fortifying himself in a position that allowed him to continue the war against Nilfgaard.
- ...and Geralt intervenes:
- Sigismund Dijkstra, better known simply as Dijkstra, is a master spy and head of special forces for the kingdom of Redania, a wealthy country located in the North. Extremely tall, balding, and big boned, the man could be easily mistaken for one of those wealthy royal entourage types who do nothing but roam around courts with a glass of wine, oblivious to the brutal political dynamics playing out in the background. Like any spy, Sigismund won't hesitate to use any manner of dirty trick to achieve his goals or forward his agendas. Dijkstra is known to dislike Geralt of Rivia: the men crossed paths in the past and, as a result of that encounter, the former ended up temporarily crippled, which—combined with the witcher besting the spy—added injury to insult. However, Geralt and Dijkstra, cold professionals both, also harbor respect for each other's achievements in their respective fields of work.
Leader Tree entries
- Chest 1: Sigismund Dijkstra was man of razor-sharp intellect and great ambition who arose from common origins to become the head of Redanian Intelligence. Alas, betrayal later forced his retreat from the Regency Council and the kingdom. This setback, however, merely served to open another door for one as shrewd and enterprising as he. Seeing the great potential in Novigrad's criminal underworld, he entrenched himself under the alias Sigi Reuven and quickly garnered tremendous influence. And it was he who introduced to the Free City's underbelly a code of conduct – an arrangement to be used to his benefit whenever the opportunity presented itself.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 The Tower of the Swallow
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Gwent: The Witcher Card Game
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Blood of Elves
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Time of Contempt
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Wiedźmin: Gra Wyobraźni
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Baptism of Fire
- ↑ The Witcher
- ↑ Walter's Journal
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 The Lady of the Lake
- See the GWENT standalone game version card: Sigismund Dijkstra