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Appalachia is under attack. The Brotherhood won't let this go unanswered.

A Knight's Penance is a main quest in Fallout 76, introduced in the Steel Reign update. It is the first quest for the second act of the Brotherhood questline.

Quick walkthrough[]

Main quest: A Knight's Penance 
Check in with Russell Dorsey
Report to Paladin Rahmani and Knight Shin
Brief Initiates Norland and Hewsen, then head to the Uncanny Caverns
Once inside, proceed to the dead end and interact with the rockslide and crevice. 
Chat with Shin multiple times while heading further down into the cavern. 
Enter the hidden crevice in the southern cavern, after finding Norland's corpse. 
Fight two waves of berserkers after Shin's sacrifice. 
Find the Pip-Boy, talk with Shin and show it to Scribe Valdez in Fort Atlas. 
Reward: 1,000 XP, 100 Bottle cap, Face Breaker, random items 

Detailed walkthrough[]

Fort Atlas[]

The quest starts automatically once The Best Defense quest has been finished, and prompts the Vault Dweller to meet up with Russell Dorsey outside of Fort Atlas. Dorsey informs them about super mutant attacks taking place across the region, and hints that they may originate from the Uncanny Caverns. He then asks them to relay that information to Paladin Rahmani and Knight Shin inside the fort.

Once inside, Rahmani and Shin are found arguing over the patrol schedule in the armory on the first floor, and after initiating dialogue with Shin, can be told about the super mutant attacks. Shin immediately wants to search for their origin, while Rahmani points out that this course of action will leave many people defenseless. One can then agree with either of them, or simply point out that Foundation believes the Uncanny Caverns to be the source of the attacks.

Shin then tasks the Vault Dwellers with briefing Initiates Norland and Hewsen, to which Rahmani grudgingly agrees. Hewsen is found downstairs and is seemingly unprepared for her first field mission.[1] Norland is found resting in one of the beds on the first floor, in the barracks opposite the armory, and is ready for duty in an instant. After speaking with both, proceed towards the Uncanny Caverns.

Uncanny Caverns[]

Upon entering the cavern, the Vault Dweller teams up with Hewsen, Norland and Shin, the latter will hold a short mission briefing. Upon descending the stairs, Hewsen will joke about taking a picture of the "Fort Atlas spelunkers," and the Vault Dweller may humor her by taking a picture of the squad with their ProSnap Deluxe camera, resulting in unique comments by all three. The squad then progresses further down into the caves, until they reach a dead end and have to defeat three floaters. Speak once more with Shin to evaluate the situation, an optional Intelligence 4+ check can be passed to receive praise from him.

The new task is to search for two ways to progress further. The first way requires to examine the purple-illuminated rock slide east of Shin, which reveals that tools are required to dislodge the rocks. The second way involves examining the teal-illuminated crevice on the southeastern wall, which reveals that someone without armor may squeeze through it. Upon examining both locations, return to Shin and report both findings. He then tasks Norland and Hewsen with crawling through the crevice.

The Vault Dweller is then tasked with finding a way to get past the rock slide. For this purpose, they may acquire additional tools. The first tool is a dynamite bundle, found in the duffle bag in the "Night Kid room" behind Shin. The second tool is a shovel stuck in the ground next to a red toolbox, slightly south of the rock slide. Once both items are acquired, the Vault Dweller may interact with the rock slide again, giving them the following options to remove it:

  • Dig through with their hands - This only results in bloodied hands, and the suggestion to either draw cave murals with them or to get a tool.
  • [Strength] Dig through with their shovel - With Strength four or greater, the attempt succeeds, with less than four Strength it fails, giving the option to either cry or give up.
  • [Luck] Remove one rock - With Luck eight or greater, the attempt succeeds, with less than eight Luck it fails.
  • Plant a dynamite bundle - This always succeeds, but goes against Shin's preference.[2]

Whichever approach is chosen, the rock slide collapses, and Shin and the Vault Dweller get attacked by three super mutant berserkers that had been lying in wait to ambush them. After the fight, a short conversation with Shin takes place, until he receives a radio call from Hewsen. Follow him afterwards to find the corpse of Norland on the bridge, and have another chat with Shin. Follow the trail of blood into the southern cavern and enter the hidden crevice.

Hidden crevice[]

Upon entering, follow Shin until finding Hewsen in the central cavern. A cutscene takes place, in which Shin utilizes his power armor to save Hewsen from an explosive trap, taking the brunt of it himself, injuring him.

Immediately afterwards, two waves of super mutant berserkers rush into the cave. Talk with Shin after they are defeated.

While Hewsen tends to Shin's injuries, head to the northeastern corner of the crevice. Behind a rock is a huge gore pile with bloodied skeletons, one of which has a damaged Pip-Boy attached to its arm. Take it and return to Shin, who recommends showing the device to Scribe Valdez back at Fort Atlas.

Travel back to Fort Atlas and hand over the damaged Pip-Boy to her, which concludes the quest, speaking with her also starts Missing Persons.

Quest stages[]

Quest stages
DescriptionLog Entry
Quest startedThings are dicey between the higher-ups right now. I should check in with Initiate Russell Dorsey to hear the word around Fort Atlas.
Player spoke to DorseyAccording to Initiate Dorsey, there have been reports of other Super Mutant attacks coming in from across Appalachia. I need to report this to Paladin Rahmani and Knight Shin.
Player spoke to Rahmani and Shin, was sent to find the 2 initiatesKnight Shin sent me to brief two other initiates in Fort Atlas. We're going on a mission to the Uncanny Caverns, which may be the origin of some Super Mutant attacks.
Player recruited both Initiates; direct to Uncanny CavernsI briefed Initiates Norland and Hewsen. Now it's time to meet everyone at the Uncanny Caverns to hunt down some Super Mutants.
Player spoke to Shin at Uncanny CavernsI need to stick with Knight Shin and the other Initiates as we traverse the Uncanny Caverns. There could be Super Mutants inside.
Player finished the dead end sceneWe reached a dead end in the Caverns. I need to look around for a way through. There could be a break in the wall or some loose rocks blocking the path.
Player activated BOTH objectivesWe reached a dead end in the Caverns, but I found a few potential ways forward. I should report them to Knight Shin.
Player reported to ShinKnight Shin sent the other two Initiates to investigate a side path. While they do that, I need to clear the rocks blocking the main path. I should look around for a tool that could dig out or destroy the rocks.
Player picked up both Dynamite and ShovelKnight Shin sent the other two Initiates to investigate a side path. While they do that, I need to clear the rocks blocking the main path. I think I found the right tools; now I just have to use them.
Player cleared the path (SPAWN SMs)I cleared the path forward through the Caverns, freeing some trapped Super Mutants in the process. Knight Shin and I will take them out. Ad victoriam!
Player eliminated the Super MutantsI cleared the path forward through the Caverns, freeing some trapped Super Mutants in the process. Knight Shin and I dispatched them, but they seemed pretty feral. We need to discuss this.
Player spoke to Shin in the tunnelI cleared the path forward through the Caverns, freeing some trapped Super Mutants in the process. Knight Shin is concerned for the safety of the other Initiates. We need to find them.
Shin approached Norland's corpse; play dialogue lineKnight Shin found Initiate Norland... It's not good. We should talk about it.
Player spoke to Shin at Norland's corpseInitiate Norland was killed by Super Mutants, but Initiate Hewsen may still be alive. If she's injured, she would have left a blood trail.
Player approached opening to next instanceI followed a blood trail to an inner chamber of the Caverns. Initiate Hewsen has to be in there somewhere.
Player entered mine scene triggerWe found Initiate Hewsen, but she's in a sticky situation. I'll wait for Knight Shin to handle this.
Mine scene completed (SPAWN SMs)We found Initiate Hewsen trapped in range of an explosive device. Knight Shin took the blast to save her, attracting the attention of the Super Mutants in the process. We need to protect him while he's out of commission.
Super Mutants defeatedInitiate Hewsen was trapped in range of an explosive device, and Knight Shin took the blast to save her. We took care of the Super Mutants that were attracted by the explosion, so now we need to check on Knight Shin.
Player spoke to ShinWe found Initiate Hewsen trapped in range of an explosive device, and Knight Shin took the blast to save her. He's alive, and has instructed me to search the area for any information about the Super Mutants. There could be something hidden in all their gore.
Player picked up the Pip-BoyI found a damaged Pip-Boy among all the Super Mutant gore. I should bring it to Knight Shin for his take on it.
Player spoke to Shin about the Pip-BoyI found a damaged Pip-Boy among all the Super Mutant gore in the Uncanny Caverns. Knight Shin has instructed me to bring it to Scribe Valdez to determine its origin.
Player spoke to Valdez about the Pip-Boy



  1. Vault Dweller: "Hey, don't worry, there's no need to be so nervous."
    Initiate Hewsen:"Right. No need to be nervous. I'm just being called for my first ever field mission, and it's led by Knight Shin... And I don't know what I'm doing, and I won't know what I'm doing in front of him. So not only am I probably going to die, but I'll look stupid doing it, and... I should stop. Yeah. No need to be nervous. Nope. No reason at all."
    (Erika Hewsen's dialogue)
  2. Vault Dweller: "Any ideas on how to clear the way?"
    Knight Shin:"I'd look around for some kind of tool. Preferably not the destructive kind. If we're lucky, the rocks may even be loose enough to dig out by hand."
    (Knight Shin's dialogue)