Depression and Dark Souls

Last time in Dirty Deeds Done Dark Souls, we pretty much became a killer for hire.  Oh sure, it may have been a wicked mercy, and it may have been for the fate of the world and all that best chosen one business, but the fact remains that I killed both two of the Izalith family members as well as the twisted, misshapen Witch of Izalith herself just because my lady of the flame asked me too.  It was a dirty deed, but one that needed to be done, but, I hope, one that bought them all some measure of long-deserved peace.

Also, I slew the well from which all my  wicked inferno magic is drawn!  I’m pretty awesome, aren’t I?

Eh.  Have to joke.  Have to try and keep the spirits up.  Humor’s most important in the darkest hour, right?  Truth is, I’m just about at the lowest point I’ve been in since I left the Undead Asylum.  Laurentius of Great Swamp went hollow and died by my hand long ago.  Solaire of Astora, I’m not sure whether he went truly hollow rather than just being driven generically mad, but either way, he lost his will, then lost his mind.  Siegmeyer of Catarina, well, I’m not entirely sure what happened.  He seemed depressed, over his lack of success, over the amount of times I bailed him out, whatever, but I don’t think he was ever expecting to survive his charge against those demons.  And even as far back as the beginning of my journey, that knight that opened the way to my escape from the Asylum in the first place, before again, going hollow and dying by my blade.

Oh, Geezer Zeus, I’m going to have to tell Siegmeyer’s daughter.

And all the while I roam this blasted land where anyone normal seems to have perished years ago, in this dying world, working on the vague promises of that stupid snake whose words coming out of his mouth is worth no more than the dung pies I’ve shoved in, and that bloated goddess, who for all her divinity has done absolutely nothing that a simple box couldn’t have.  I’m the Chosen One, I’m the one who’s supposed to link the fire, cure the undead plague, renew the world, and succeed a god, and yet I’m the only one who actually does anything towards that goal.  Frampt, the Lords, anyone else who ruled in this land?  They’ve all either vanished, twisted themselves into uselessness in ages past or are actively making Lordran worse, now.  And what does succeeding Gwyn even mean?  I am already immortal and monstrously powerful.  What more can becoming a god gain me?  In pursuit of that, I have killed so many people, some of whom deserve it, but what good has come out of it?  Whose lives are better for my actions?  Sure, some of those I killed played some part in how screwed up Lordran’s gotten, but I feel like even with their deaths, I’ve only just put a bandage on a mortal wound.   I’ve got promises that by fulfilling my station as the Chosen Undead, I can at least purge the undead curse and bring life, true life, back to this world, but most of that comes from sources I know aren’t telling me the whole story.

Yet even so, I know I’m going to stay the course.  I have to.  If I stop, I know I’m going hollow.  The knight at the Asylum lost his mission.  Solaire got discouraged.  Siegmeyer seemed to have given up.  And they are all no more.  That will not happen to me.  I need to keep moving forward.  And I have no other direction than the quest of the Chosen Undead.  And you know what?  I’m starting to find myself not caring about killing these people for their souls.  The holder of the Lord Souls have all needed a good killing thus far.  For all I know, Nito might be the same.  And even if he hasn’t gone full-blown malevolent, at the very least, he’s done nothing about Lordran falling so hard to the darksign.  I’m sure I can make much better use of his Lord Soul than he is.

Still, even the most epic of quests could do with a break now and again.  And I really need something to feel good about right now.  And honestly, I could do with someone to talk to.  My best friend just tried to kill me, I watched another friend die, and the pressure of being chosen are getting to me.  Even the strongest of warriors need a shoulder to lean on, and I am getting to that point.  I head first to Quelana.  I don’t expect much empathy from her, but I at least need to let her know the deed is done.


She, at least, is happy that her family’s been released from their twisted, chaotic forms.  Well, except for the Daughter of Chaos, the waifish, spidery, fire-keeper.  As dire as her situation is, she at least seems to have retained something of her self.


You know, that’s a big expression of endearment from her.


She teaches me the Fire Tempest pyromancy.  I’ll have to try that out sometime.  She calls out to me as I’m leaving.


Well, I seem to have helped her out at least.  Now, I just need to keep this up for, oh, the rest of the still-living world?

While I’m in the area, I pick up the treasures left behind in the Demon Ruin’s magma, the ones that were by that pack of Taurus Demons.  There’s a bunch of souls on one, and a Chaos Ember on the other.  I take it to Andrei, who reports that he can’t do anything with it.  The Giant Blacksmith has no interest in it either.  And Rickert, as he proudly claims, doesn’t deal in embers.  I hold onto it for now.

It’s starting to occur to me that I could do with an upgrade in equipment.  I love this Black Knight Sword.  It has been my most constant companion in the Chosen One quest.  I would marry this sword if I could.  The nuptials… would be awkward.  But even so, I’ve upgraded it as much as I can, and I’m not going to be getting much stronger than I am now.  My damage output with this blade has peaked, and while still considerable, I’m worried it may not be enough for some of the future challenges facing me.  I’m not in a hurry to replace it, but I am going to be keeping my eye out for a new weapon.  Maybe I’ll learn to love it as much as I love this one.

In the meantime, my mind drifts to one other person who I’m pretty sure would do me good to talk to.  Someone who I’ve unequivocally saved.  Someone who’s not completely steeped in the despair that pervades those under the undead blight.  And perhaps most importantly, someone who hasn’t yet rejected my requests for a date.  Dusk of Oolacile.  The lady trapped for untold ages in the body of the golden golem, before I rescued her and she used her magic to return to the past.  She left me a summon sign, to speak with her again.  And if ever I needed it, it’s now.  I venture back to the lake at the Darkroot Basin.


And her summon sign is gone.

That’s not right.  I explore the area, heading back to where I first rescued her from the golem.


Two things of note, here.  That roiling ball of darkness that seems to tug at something in my pouch, and the corpse.  The corpse wearing Dusk’s clothes.

That gives me pause, sets me in a brief bit of consternation.  I hold onto my nerves, though, long enough to work some things out.  That corpse is rotten, desiccated, old.  Dusk comes from a blessed time, before the darksign took hold, so her body wouldn’t have gotten that twisted while she still lived.  Even if that is Dusk, with the messed up way time flows in Lordran, she would have died long ago, yet the Dusk I know is still reachable.  Blazes, she was probably an old, old woman before she finally fell.  In any case, I’m sure this corpse was dead long before I met my Dusk.

I poke around the mass of darkness.  It does not feel right to me.


It doesn’t react to my touch.  In fact, it feels like nothing’s even there.  But something in my pouch does seem pulled to it.


And the mass responds.


Before I can move, I’m gripped strongly in the huge, shifting hand.


In a swift motion, it tugs me through the darkness.


And I find myself somewhere else entirely.

No idea where I am now, but there’s a bonfire right in front of me, and it’s still connected with all the others, so I could easily warp back home if I wanted to.  I consider doing so for a good long moment.  Whoever’s behind that arm obviously wanted me here, and you know what?  Screw that guy.  I decide to stick it out, though.  Maybe this will give me a chance to find out what happened to Dusk.  And that fool thinks he can just jerk me around.   It’s a public service for me to show him the error of his ways.


Also, it seems someone’s left me one final insult.  It’s all muscle!  You don’t get as strong as I am without bulking up!


It’s bad enough that I got dragged off to Geezer Zeus knows where.  Did they have to put me underground on top of it?  Luckily, this tunnel’s not long and actually heads upwards.  I hurriedly pass through the fog gate, eager to get some sky above me.


Well of course I can’t just explore this new land in peace!  I don’t know what was wrong with me, thinking that maybe I’d have a moment in this strange new area before everything started trying to kill me!


Right.  So, the Sanctuary Guardian begins the battle by charging up and releasing three blasts of electricity at me.  I block the first.  Lapse of judgment.  I completely forgot how easily the electricity flows past my shield.  The blast does almost as much damage to me as if I got hit outright.  Immediately, I roll to my side, and narrowly avoid the next two.  The Guardian follows up by charging me, completely bowling me over.


Just as I regain my feet and heal up, the beast is on me again, swiping at me four times in succession.  I catch all of them on my shield, my guard breaking just as he finishes his final strike.  He doesn’t capitalize on the opening, though, and I roll out as soon as I recover.


Well, this clearly isn’t working in my favor.  He’s already pressured me considerably, while I’ve not even touched him yet.  The Guardian doesn’t directly follow up the assault, instead taking to the air and looping around in the sky.  I roll out of the way as bolts of electricity hit the ground beside me, arcing along the shallow water.  I catch sight of him landing as I rise, and immediately rush towards his side.


Success!  I score a few hits on him before he takes the ground again, then back off before he can counter.


The Guardian follows up with another lightning blast, a larger, slower one this time.  Looks like it might hurt.  Luckily, I don’t have to find out, as I sidestep it easily.


He charges me once more, but for whatever reason, slows and stops before he quite reaches me.  I’m not one to let an opening go by, and I carve up his face a bit.


He takes to the air again, and nails me with one of his lightning blasts.  I’m not able to reach him as he lands, but I am able to slip to his side as he starts swiping at me.  I rake my blade along his ribs, and he responds by jabbing me with his scorpion-like tail.  Blazes, that’s some strong poison!  It overcomes my resistance instantly.  Luckily, I just came from Blighttown, and I’ve still got some restorative moss at the ready.


Another large blast of lightning.  I’m a little slower this time, and get caught in the splash as the blast hits the ground to my side.  I respond by rushing forward and slamming him in the face, before the Guardian takes to the air again.


The Guardian comes charging down from the sky, catching me cleanly.  I try to heal before he recovers, and find myself staring right into his mouth as he readies another electricity blast.  I get hit by two of the three bolts that follow.

I slip by as he charges towards me, and stab into his side once more.  He catches me with his tail again, and immediately I feel the poison coursing through my veins.  I roll away to give myself space to heal, but the Guardian stays on me.


So instead, I just ignore the poison, and counterattack.  I roll away from his swipe, come up by his side, and then bury my steel into his flesh.


That assault was more than enough for him.  I take his soul as a souvenir.

There’s two exits out of this basin.  I take the one that leads the way I originally came in from first, and hit the bonfire for some healing.  Then, I take the other one.


Oolacile?  I’m in Lost Oolacile?  Well. Don’t know where I expected I’d be, but it’s certainly not here.

5 responses to “Depression and Dark Souls

  1. Ladies and gentlemen: The first player in the history of Dark Souls to find the DLC without consulting a wiki.

    • I wish I could claim that honor. I really do. But no, I ended up reading a not-quite-related forum thread a while back and another player’s complaining about how you couldn’t get to the DLC in the early game ended up spoiling it for me. Not quite a wiki, but I did know how to get here beforehand.

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