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To get this quest :talk with spirit and when the option 'scream' appears don't take it.In my game it worked(i might be wrong but when i chose 'scream' journal was not updated)
At current patch, you don't have to talk with him first to initiate/complete this quest.
I stormed the whole sawmill before talking to him, I still get the reward and quest is completed.
(Reward Note: He will grant a nice Pyro/Hydro/Geo skill to the character who talks to him. Hypro is Global Cooling and Geo is Earthquake, didn't try Pyro though.)
Don't do this people, you will fail ALL of the other quests if you do this since this is the only one that still works after killing all the NPC's, the others won't work. Complete all of the quests from the spirits first THEN start killing everybody.