This page covers A Princess in Distress, The Race, burning stables, Oxenfurt and Tamara. If you're looking for more assistance, our Witcher 3 walkthrough can help.
Before you can continue, open up your inventory and ensure that the Pellar's Bell is equipped to one of your free pocket slots. Next, head toward the objective marker nearby. Once you enter the yellow circle marked on your mini-map, activate your Witcher Senses and look for the hoof prints on the ground. Follow them further into the circle, dealing with any wolves that attack as you go.
Once you hear the goat's bleating, ring your bell. This causes a small, oscillating circle to appear on-screen when your senses are activated. Make your way toward the circle - ringing the bell again if the marker disappears - and stop once you spy the goat.
A Princess in Distress
Bring the goat to the pellar
To complete the quest, you need to guide the stubborn goat back to the pellar's hut. Move away from Princess a little, heading in the direction of the objective marker, then ring the bell. Once the goat has trotted over to your position, move forward a little more then ring the bell again. Repeat the process until the local wildlife takes an interest in your shenanigans, then prepare to fight.
Defend the goat from the bear
As the bear charges into the clearing, unsheath your sword and start attacking. It's a tough old thing and can do a surprising amount of damage when it charges or rears up onto its back legs and slams down. Cast your Quen spell for some added protection, then run around to the creature's rear and land as many heavy attacks as you can. Dodge out of the way if it prepares to lunge, then continue your assault as soon as possible. It'll take a fair few hits to finish the bear off, but the creature shouldn't cause you much trouble.
Bring the goat to the pellar
Once the bear is dead, return to Princess (highlighted on your mini-map) and ring the bell to get her to follow you again. Slowly work your way back to the pellar's hut, watching out for any more hostile wildlife, then prepare yourself for a tear-jerking reunion. With the pellar's request fulfilled, ask again for his help. Once the ritual is complete, work your way through the conversation options to learn more of Anna, her child and the botchling.
Read the bestiary to learn more about the botchlings
As instructed, access the Bestiary in your menu and look for the entry concerning botchlings, listed under 'Cursed Ones'. Now suitably informed, close the menu to continue.
Talk to the baron
Leave the pellar's hut, mount your steed, then return to the baron's castle. As it looms into view, you'll notice something isn't quite right. Enter the surrounding village, climb the hill and pass into the castle grounds. As you near the fire, you're accosted by guards - when the choice arises, agree to save the horses and the stable boy from the flames.
Survive the burning stables
Save the stable hand and the horses trapped in the burning stable
Approach the burning stable in the south-west corner of the courtyard and look for the ladder by the door. Climb up to gain entry to the building and loot the chest to the left. An air gauge begins to deplete once you enter the stable - you'll die if it empties completely, so move quickly. Jump over the barrels blocking the passage to the right, then push further into the room. Continue forwards, jump over the next row of barrels, and then drop off the ledge ahead to reach the lower level.
Open the main gate to the stables
At the bottom, quickly open every horse pen, then wind your way around the burning debris until you reach the large stable door in the direction of the objective marker. Open it to continue. Outside, you'll be confronted by the baron. Once you've told him what you know about his missing family, prepare to engage him in battle.
Defeat the baron in a fistfight
Despite his size, the baron is swift and can do a surprising amount of damage when he lands a blow. Luckily, he's absolutely terrible at defending himself so, once you've taken a successful swing, keep on pummelling him to end the fight quickly. With the battle over, it's time to make the baron talk. Work your way through the dialogue options to learn more of the botchling's birth. Tell the baron that you'll help him bury the creature at his threshold and agree to start right away.
Follow the baron
Once night comes around, follow the baron through the pouring rain until you reach the spot where the corpse was buried. When the creature appears, you've a few seconds to decide what to do with it. You're free to attack, or attempt to turn it into a harmless lubberkin. Opt for the latter and the baron scoops the botchling in his arms, ready for you to work your magic.
Follow the baron to the castle's entrance
In order to turn the botchling into a lubberkin, you need to bury it at the castle's threshold. Follow the baron back up the hill towards the courtyard. As you near your destination, Wraiths begin to attack, so ready your sword and prepare to fight.
How to kill the Wraiths, Endrega Workers and Rotfiends
Protect the baron from the Wraiths
The Wraiths that materialise around your position don't take much to bring down, but they can be sneaky so remain vigilant. Should a Wraith disappear mid-combat, it will almost reappear behind you moments later, readying an attack. Quickly turn around and finish them off before they can do any serious damage.
Use the Axii sign to calm the botchling
With the Wraiths successfully vanquished, the botchling begins to grow restless. Quickly open up your Sign menu, select Axii and then cast it in the direction of the baron.
Follow the baron to the castle's entrance
With peace restored, proceed up the hill and prepare to fight a second wave of Wraiths as you pass beneath the arch and enter the castle courtyard. Deal with them as before, then use your Axii spell to calm the botchling. When you're done, continue through the courtyard toward the castle entrance. Once you reach your destination, the ritual will be performed.
Summon the lubberkin where the botchling is buried
Next, approach the burial mound and interact with it to summon the ghostly lubberkin. When the spirit emerges from the ground, follow it through the castle courtyard. Pass through the archway and head down into the village, keeping close to the creature as you go. Out in the countryside, follow the lubberkin along the dirt trail (you might as well remain on foot - the journey isn't a long one) until you reach the small hut in the clearing.
Search the area around the smokehouse using your Witcher Senses
As soon as the lubberkin comes to a halt, activate your Witcher Senses and begin exploring the nearby yard. Examine the horseshoe marks on the ground, the bracelet on the barrel and, finally, the pile of discarded clothing.
Follow the lubberkin
Next, return to the lubberkin and follow it further along the trail. Be careful as you go: insectoid Endrega Workers attack from the nearby trees as you pass. At your destination, several Rotfiends strike. These zombie-like creatures will start clutches their stomachs when their health is low. Shortly afterwards, they explode in a shower of giblets, causing damage to you and your equipment if you're standing too close - be prepared to dodge clear.
With the Rotfiends out of the way, head over to the lubberkin and examine the horse carcass on the ground. Work your way through the various on-screen options and summarise the evidence to complete your investigation.
When you're ready, move toward the lubberkin once more and follow it to the small building nearby. Once the creature comes to a stop, head inside.
Look around the fisherman's hut
Inside the building, work your way through the dialogue options to learn more of the fate of Tamara and Anna. When you're done, loot the chests (the family don't seem to mind) and head outdoors again. Say farewell to the lubberkin, then ready yourself for the next stage of the quest.
Talk to the baron about his family
Summon your horse and make the short journey back to the baron's castle. If you saved the stablehand from the fire earlier, you'll meet him again as you enter the courtyard. Accept your reward, then follow the objective marker towards the garden. Speak to the sergeant standing watch, then converse with the baron who's now sitting on a nearby bench. Work your way through the dialogue options and agree to visit Tamara. You'll receive some coins and a Letter of Conduct as a reward. Once the flashback begins, complete the conversation to bring the scene to a close.
Ciri's Story: The Race
Beat the baron in the horse race
Your first task is to beat the baron to the finish line. Wait for the race to begin, then immediately get your horse moving at sprint speed. Your final destination is the abandoned tower on the horizon, so use the yellow line on your mini-map as a guide and wind your way down the hill towards your goal. Cross the finish line first to win the baron's steed.
Our Witcher 3 walkthrough and guide can help you with the main story, including the Wandering in the Dark and Family Matters missions, and eventually, one of several Witcher 3 endings. There's plenty of side content, too, including Witcher 3 Contracts, White Orchard quests, Velen quests, Novigrad quests and Skellige Isles quests. Elsewhere, learn about the best Witcher 3 builds, the best Witcher 3 mods, how to make money in Witcher 3, find Places of Power locations, and learn how to do Witcher 3 crafting and Witcher 3 Alchemy And when you're done with all those - we can help you through expansions with our Hearts of Stone walkthrough and Blood and Wine walkthrough.
Family Matters (continued)
Back in the present day, finish talking to the baron and leave the castle. Accept the rag doll as you begin to cross the courtyard.
Find Tamara, the baron's daughter, in Oxenfurt
Head through the archway and leave the village, crossing the bridge back out into the countryside. Now, it's time to make the long horseback ride to Oxenfurt, so begin heading in the direction of the objective marker. Once the city comes into view, locate the bridge and make your way across. At the gate, speak to the guard and tell him that you have a pass granting entrance to Oxenfurt.
With the gate open, finish your journey across the bridge and make your way into the city. There's plenty to see and do here, but your first priority is to locate Tamara. Follow the objective marker until you reach your destination. If you're struggling to find it, pass through the archway between the buildings and look for the door facing the docks.
Head on inside and, once Tamara joins you, work your way through the dialogue options. Ask what happened to her mother and, when the conversation ends, take a moment to investigate your surroundings. Loot what you can, swipe the mysterious letter from the cabinet near the window, then leave.
Talk to the baron about Tamara
Before continuing on your quest, it's worth exploring the city of Oxenfurt. As you'd expect, you'll find the usual array of merchants, armourers, blacksmiths and innkeepers, so investigate their wares and buy anything that you need. When you're ready to leave, make your way to the nearest fast travel signpost (either the Western Gate to the south-west or the Novigrad Gate to the north-east) and teleport yourself back to Crow's Perch.
Next, cross the bridge to enter the village and follow the objective marker until you reach the baron. Talk to him, tell him that you gave Tamara the doll, then end the conversation.
Investigate all remaining leads in Velen and find the baron's wife
Leave the castle compound, cross the bridge and head back out into the countryside. To bring the Family Matters quest to its conclusion, you need to first complete the Ladies of the Wood quest. Activate it in your Quest menu and prepare for some spooky goings on.
- Keep reading for our guide to finishing The Witcher 3 - Ladies of the Wood, the next quest in the game.
- For the rest of our Witcher 3 walkthrough, head back to the index page of this article.