Details about how to solve the lever puzzle in Emem’s second scene (Scene 04) in Vampire the Masquerade: Swansong. How to find the Tremere Concoction, and how to use Celerity - Fleetness to explore the prison cells.
Where to Find the Lever Puzzle
Progress through Emem’s second scene (Scene 04) until you perform your second Blink jump, after recovering your first missing memory (while looking at the Jefferson Library sign). You should find yourself on a ledge with a well-furnished study across from some sundered stairs that lead to a tower.
Enter the study and turn right to spot three levers on the wall. The middle one is inoperable, but the right and left levers will lower portcullises blocking the cell-laden hallways just outside the study. The right lever (facing the levers on the wall) will lower the portcullis blocking the left hallway (facing away from the study) while the left lever will lower the right portcullis. Lowering the portcullises will block the hallways, but remove the seals on the cells within allowing you access provided you can get past the portcullises fast enough. The cells collectively hide three of Emem’s memories, not to mention numerous vessels and rats she can feast on, should she need to lower her Hunger. You can also find the Tremere Brooch in one of the cells, so it’s well worth your while to get past those portcullises.
Alas, simply running (or, well, jogging) will not suffice, you’ll need an edge to beat the gates.
How to Get Past the Gates
Simply put, you’ll need Celerity Rank II to get past the gates, as this unlocks the Fleetness ability, allowing you to functionally slow down time (or act quickly enough to simulate the same, as the case may be). If you invested in this discipline on your own, you’ll be prompted to use it when you approach the levers, assuming you have Celerity active, anyways. If not, no such prompt will occur, making this another fairly obtuse little puzzle, under the wrong circumstances.
Fortunately, even if you don’t have Celerity Rank II you can still solve this puzzle. Search the desks in the study and you’ll find a Tremere Concoction, which you can consume to obtain a temporary trait with the same name. This trait will, in turn boost your Celerity by +1. You don’t need to worry about this running out, it’ll persist for the rest of the scene.
However you manage it, once you have Celerity Rank II, approach the levers and activate your Celerity ability, and after the Fleetness tutorial, activate Fleetness and pull one of the levers. Quickly turn around, leave the study, and head under the gate you lowered before it closes. Once the portcullis is sealed behind you, the seals will vanish from the cells, allowing you to explore them at your leisure. To open the portcullises back up, just search for a lever on the wall near said portcullis.