Pretty much, this is an attempt to make me feel better after I had to kill Artorias then Sif. I never felt so bad about killing a boss before in my life.
Artorias is known as the knight with the unbreakable will, a title he once proudly took. Nothing could deter him from his goals for he would fight even to the bitter end when all hope seemed to be lost. The protection of his friends and the land is what pushed him to try and go beyond what thought possible. With his best friend the Grey wolf Sif, he descended into something that could only be described as utter hell.
The abyss had come to Oolacile as a blighted plague, disfiguring the citizens he fought so hard to protect into grotesque beasts that held no remorse in attacking their defender. Artorias tried his best to spare them, hoping that a cure would come once the abyss was utterly destroyed, but it was difficult and he sustained many wounds.
His friends have fought and fought. Gough stood upon a tower and sniped enemies, but one snuck behind him and tore out his eyes, rendering him blind. Ciaran, oh Ciaran. The beautiful woman fought just as hard. Unfortunately, he has no idea where she might be or what her state of well being is. Ornstein stayed behind in Anor Londo to protect Gwynevere. Maybe some things could have been changed have he been here. And last but not least, Sif. He hoped that he was safe with his shield and not dead. He didn't think he could handle it if he or any of his friends were to die.
Artorias had these thoughts wave through his mind as he was slumped up against the wall of the large tower. He clutched his sword tightly in his right hand, his left arm hanging limply, nothing but a pile of dust filling the armor.
These were those few moments of sanity he was able to retain as he remained in his prison, the fog gates keeping him from getting out. Keeping his friends safe.
Damn you Manus, thought Artorias, his grip tightening on his sword. Why couldn't you have just killed me. But instead, you try to use me against my friends.
In hindsight, it was probably a good idea to not traverse the abyss so much, but his hatred for the dark pushed him to go every time. And when he did try to go fight Manus, the abyss was too much and the abyss's father started to control him through the poison. Sent him back to the surface to kill any opposition to him. But, at that last moment, he regained what little was left of his sanity and locked himself away, letting the thoughts of his failures slowly eat away at him.
At the sound of footsteps, he slowly lifted his head to see a random Oolacile citizen, now a bloat head, walk to the middle of the large room. Then it just stood there, letting out it's maniacal laughter to the sky like it had nothing else better to do in the world.
Artorias ignored it at first, not finding the motivation to move or to wonder how it got in in the first place. But the constant laughter started to grate on his nerves after what seemed like forever. And before he even knew it himself, his sword smashed it, launching it across the room and to the entrance to a fog gate. During this time, he could feel the abyss creeping back in, tugging at his mind and body. And at the sight of an unknown knight coming through said fog gate, he again, lost control.
Artorias had killed the person, but moments later, he came back again through the fog. During these times Artorias had killed him, the abyss was controlling him, but at some moments, he could see through his own eyes, but that was it. His body was not his own.
The second time his abyss controlled self killed him, the new knight came back again, and again, and again. As Artorias watched him, he was surprised at the man's determination to move forward, trudging through his countless failures to kill him.
During this time as his mind was phasing in and out, he started to respect the knight. The sheer will to overcome emanated from him, and touched a part of Artorias he thought long dead.
This unknown knight, small compared to himself, had more resolve and iron will than he, Artorias the Abyss Walker.
Perhaps it is time to pass the torch along...
It seemed like it took forever for the knight to come back again, and while he waited, Artorias once again had some time in control. He lifted his head when he heard the telltale sign of someone entering a fog gate and came to the sight of the knight who now wielded an even bigger great sword.
The knight held up his great shield, expecting Artorias to launch himself at him. But he didn't, he just sat against the wall and brought up a hand, beckoning him over. The knight didn't move and firmly held his ground.
Artorias licked his lips and called out, his voice feeling like sandpaper down his throat. "Determined knight, come hither."
The knight cocked his head and slowly lowered his shield, but he stayed rooted to his spot. "Artorias?" he called. "Artorias the Abyss Walker?"
Ah, so he already knew who he was. Then this shall make things easier.
"Yes, tis I. Please hurry forth to me before I once again lose control."
The knight sheathed his sword and shield on his back and jogged over. He stopped in front of Artorias and then raked a curious, yet joyous stare over over him. "I knew it! The abyss hasn't taken you yet."
Artorias shook his head. "It has. I've only been given the slightest of moments to sanity, but now those are less frequent. I do not have much time left so please listen to my words; I won't stay like this long, and I feel after that, I will be beyond reach. So please, I beg of you to complete the quest I failed to achieve. That is all I ask. The abyss has claimed me, it may have even claimed this land of Oolacile, but it cannot have the world. Kill me, take my soul for power and move on."
The knight stayed quiet, his head down in thought. After a moment, he raised his head and said, "I'm not killing you. You'll never be at rest until it is you who has destroyed the abyss."
"You have the determination, I've seen that first hand. Tis all you need and you shall prevail without me. I will not risk the world for my own selfishness."
The knight put a hand on his helmet and sighed. "Ya know, my mother used to tell me your stories, like the one when you meet Sif or when you traversed the abyss. I was actually surprised to find you here, since the story says that you died while defeating the abyss.
Anyway, the reason I became a knight was so I could be like you. Artorias the Abyss Walker, known for his will of steel, his fierce drive to protect everyone, not letting anything sway him, not letting a thing deter you from your path of justice!" he started yelling. "You can't just let the abyss control you. I can't stand to see my hero like this!"
Artorias sighed and shook his head. "There is no hope for me. I'm too far gone to be of any help anymore. The abyss has won me over." His words sounded like a man who had completely given up, and it seemed to ignite something within the new knight.
He pointed a finger at Artorias's chest, his temper starting to flare. "No, it hasn't! There is always hope, no matter how small it is. You walk the abyss, the abyss doesn't walk you. Re harden the steel that is your will, stand up, take your sword in hand and yell to the abyss, "you won't control me, only I control me. You are nothing compared to my determination and I. Will. Never. Give. In!" Push the abyss back and become yourself again, the hero we all know and love." He stared through his helm and into Artorias's hood, awaiting an answer.
Artorias sat there, speechless.
Is what this fellow knight told him true?
Did he give up too soon? Did he really lose what he was most known for?
With sheer will and determination, could he overcome this?
This lit a new fire in him, a fire of hope.
"Is it possible?" he said to himself.
The knight nodded his head fiercely. "Yes! Anything can be accomplished if you have the determination. You should have seen what I've gone through to get here. I've fought dragons, a dragon hybrid, hydras, demons, giant knights, giant skeletons, giant clams, pretty much Gods, even some darkwraithes in New Londo and I died so many times during this that it has to be in the thousands. But I never gave up on my quest and so should you." He took off his helmet and smiled, sticking out his hand. "Are you with me?"
Artorias sat there a moment, contemplating his decision.
Perhaps he could do it. If he could suppress the abyss long enough, he could make it back to Sif, save him, then go with the knight to defeat Manus once and for all.
But then, what if he couldn't keep the abyss away? What if it took him over and made him kill the knight who has opened his eyes and Sif. He would never forgive himself if he did.
But still, what would happen if he didn't help? What if the new knight can't defeat Manus then? Oolacile would be gone, possibly the world, and all his friends. He can't let that happen.
Life is all about taking risks, and maybe they need to take a risk in order to save Oolacile. He either did something, or sat here like a slug, doing nothing but let his failures eat him away to madness.
Artorias then made his decision.
He let go of his sword and shook hands with the knight. "I will try young knight. The abyss inside me shall be pushed back as far as it can go so I may aid you in battle." He let go of the now grinning knight's hand and leaned forward. "But, if I happen to lose control, or show any signs of it, I need you to kill me. Understand?"
The knight frowned. "I'll agree with this, only because I know you won't let the abyss take you." He grabbed his helmet and placed it over his head and stood up. "C'mon, we got an abyss to slay!"
Artorias smiled lightly at his enthusiasm. He picked up his sword and gripped it with new purpose. Rising to his full height, he rested the sword on his shoulder, then eying his bum left arm. "I will not be as useful without my arm." Though, he wasn't mad at all about losing it. He sacrificed it for Sif, and he will his other arm if need be.
The other knight waved it off with a laugh. "Uh huh, sure. Not like you killed me a thousand times."
And so, Artorias dismissed the fog gate, and asked the question that had been on his mind. "Young knight, what is thy name?"
"I'm Darren the auspicious," he announced, bowing his head. "And I didn't really get a chance to say it earlier, but it is an honor to meet you, Artorias the Abysswalker."
Again, Artorias thought of another question he failed to ask earlier. "You said earlier that I died fighting the abyss. Do you have knowledge of the future?"
Darren nodded. "Yeah, well, it's because I am from the future. I was pulled here by some weird looking hand through a portal."
"Manus," growled Artorias. "He has brought you here for some reason. Knowing may be important. Do you know why?"
"I don't know, it just happened." He then tilted his head, as if remembering something. "Wait a second, I think I remember him trying to grab my neck first." He pulled an old looking pendant from his neck and held it out for Artorias to see. "Maybe he was after this old thing."
Artorias took the pendant and stared at it, racking his brain for any knowledge of it. All he could remember was when he went to fight Manus, he heard a very soft whisper, saying it wanted something back. At the time, he didn't really care or wonder what it wanted, but it could maybe be this pendant.
After a moments thought, he handed it back to Darren. "Where did you find this?"
"It was in a crystal golem in the Duke's Archives in Anor Londo. " When he mentioned Anor Londo, he went stiff, as if remembering something.
"What is wrong with Anor Londo?" Artorias asked, slightly nervous of what he would hear of it's future.
"I didn't see anyone there. None of it's citizens, just a bunch of mad silver knights that repeatedly tried to kill me."
Artorias had the feeling he was hiding one little detail, but he decided to not push it. More important things were at stake.
"Shall we be going?" Darren said, gesturing to the now fogless archway.
Artorias nodded and they headed out together.
Two great knights, shoulder to shoulder, ready to face the horrors of Oolacile and it's abyssal chasm. Will they prevail? Or with they become pawns of Manus, father of the abyss?
The hard thing about writing from Dark souls is that it's really hard to get lore on it's history, so if any of the history in this is completely wrong, tell me so I can change it. Some of the stuff I didn't know, I made up, and I hope it's okay with you readers.