All right! So this is another idea I had for an "Amnesia: The Dark Descent" fanfiction. I've always been very interested in how the Shadow viewed Daniel and how it might have "felt" about some of the things that happened before and during the game, so I've decided to write a multi-chapter story about my take on specific moments from the Loading Screens and Daniel's journal. I hope you guys enjoy this, and let me know what you think! :)
DISCLAIMER: Everything belongs to Frictional Games.
WARNING: There will be spoilers from The Dark Descent throughout this story.
"Moving that Orb was like pushing a star in the night sky. It wasn't supposed to happen. The Shadow isn't some vengeful spirit; it is the universe catching up with itself."
Many centuries have passed since the Guardian of the Orbs was last awake, traveling around the world as it safeguarded the very relics it was named for. Nobody was quite sure what the Orbs did or why they existed, although there were rumors that the mysterious artifacts were connected to the ancient religion of Mithraism. Nevertheless, they were powerful enough to be revered by kings and priests alike, often being viewed as symbols of the sun.
Like with anything else that contained a large amount of power, there were two kinds of people: those who sought to wield the Orbs for their own purposes, and those who simply wished to study them, having no interest in using them for personal gain. More often than not, there was an equal amount of both, and the Guardian did whatever it could to keep everything in balance, and more importantly, help the universe maintain its order.
But with these categories of people also came exceptions, which the entity was about to discover much later in its time. It was in the nineteenth century that it would encounter someone who didn't quite fit in either group, and that it would have to keep its eye on a little more closely in order to see what would happen next.
And that someone was a young archaeologist from London named Daniel.
May 17th, 1839…
A cool breeze blew through the tomb, a welcome relief from the scorching heat outside as the Guardian relaxed, continuing to sleep like it had been for the last couple of centuries. After making its rounds in Europe, it decided to change its course and watch over the Orbs located in Africa, ready to take action on the off chance that somebody tried to misuse the artifacts. So far, nobody had shown up, and the Guardian preferred to keep it that way.
Until that fateful day a group of explorers uncovered the tomb.
The Guardian was still sleeping as the room began to shake as if there was an earthquake, which was followed by loud voices as the large stone serving as the entrance to the tomb slammed to the ground. A mix of both Arabic and English filled the air as frantic voices yelled and screamed at each other, trying to make sense of what had just happened and why.
Eventually, the ground stopped shaking, and the only sound left was one man still yelling at the top of his lungs. "Help!" he cried, pounding on the slab of stone that had fallen down and trapped him inside the tomb.
"Hey!" he screamed, "Somebody! Anybody! Help!" He continued to throw all his weight into the stone, hoping it would budge and allow him to escape, but to no avail. After what felt like an eternity of pounding the stone with his fist, a sweat broke out on his forehead as his body began to grow weak from the steady decline in oxygen. He now felt like he was going to throw up from the sudden change in temperature, and he slumped to the ground as he tried to calm himself down, hugging himself as his eyelids grew heavy.
"Why does it have to be so dark in here?" he groaned under his breath, his nyctophobia kicking in almost immediately. He found himself grinding his teeth together out of habit, and he could feel his heart begin to beat a little faster and his breathing pick up, but he forced himself to keep it together. He couldn't afford to use up any remaining oxygen if he was going to be stuck in this place.
Once he managed to get his bearings straight again, he picked himself up and took a couple of steps forward…only to find himself falling again as the ground crumbled underneath him, causing him to land on the steps in front of him. A cloud of dust kicked up all around him, though he couldn't see it, but it was when he picked his head up again that he finally noticed something odd in the distance.
Up ahead was a shimmering blue light that he hadn't seen when he first got trapped in here, and he wondered what it was as it suddenly seemed to appear out of nowhere. He could have sworn he heard whispering all around him as he slowly stood up and brushed himself off again, taking careful steps as he used the light in order to see where he was going. He tucked a lock of brown hair behind his ear as he inched closer and closer, the whispering getting louder as the hairs on the back of his neck stood on end. He was running out of oxygen, but he didn't care. All he could focus on was the mysterious light, which grew brighter as he spotted some sort of pillar below it.
"What's this?"he asked himself as he finally saw what was giving off such a radiant glow: a mysterious, round orb that looked like it was big enough to fit in his hands if he cupped them together. It was light blue in color, almost bordering on white, and it was so bright that he felt his eyes well up with tears, forcing him to look away a few times. He had never seen anything like it before: after burying himself in various books and taking a job at the British Museum, he thought he knew everything about the ancient world, and the artifacts it left behind, but this one was a mystery.
The longer he stared at the Orb, the more he felt drawn to it, and he didn't think twice before reaching out and gently picking up the relic.
What happened next was like something out of a dream, and for a few minutes, the young man couldn't tell what was real and what wasn't as the burial chamber became flooded with light. He began to feel lightheaded as strange images flashed in front of him: spiraling towers taller than anything he'd ever seen in London, vast deserts that reminded him of the ones in Africa, and impossible geometry that he couldn't make heads or tails of. He had never seen anything like this before, and he wondered what it all meant and why he was seeing it.
Just as the images intensified, he suddenly heard a loud crash as the light disappeared, and another wave of sickness hit his stomach as he collapsed in front of the pillar. A sweat broke out on his forehead, and he struggled to keep his eyes open just as he heard the sound of shuffling rocks. Was the tomb caving in now because he had picked up the Orb? Had that been the only thing keeping the structure from collapsing? He wasn't sure, but he held his breath as he waited for the end to come.
"Almost there! Just keep digging a little further!"
That voice, he thought as he tried to sit up straight again, It can't be…
More rocks tumbled close to him, and when he squinted his eyes, he could see a little bit of light poking through a hole up ahead, along with silhouettes of men. Another voice shouted something in Arabic as a group of men stepped into the tomb, being careful not to trip and fall on each other.
"Daniel! Daniel, are you all right? Can you hear me?"
Herbert! Daniel thought to himself in relief, though he was still too tired to speak. All he could do was groan as he flipped himself onto his back.
"Get him out of here and back to camp," Herbert ordered, and the group of men accompanying him grabbed Daniel by the arms and began to carry him out of the tomb, ignoring the fact that the young archaeologist was now carrying the broken pieces of the Orb he had picked up earlier. Nobody cared much about that, as all they could focus on was making sure Daniel was safe and sound before continuing the expedition.
Although nobody knew it, the moment Daniel and the broken Orb left the chamber was the moment that the Guardian of the Orb awakened for the first time in centuries.