Part 1, Chapter 1/5: Paths Crossed and Fates Intertwined

A/N: This is basically a way to put my own theories about the franchise into writing. This is a 5 chapter story, one chapter for each encounter with Solaire; first meeting, Anor Londo, Sunlight Altar, Lost Izalith and the Klin of the First Flame. I'll throw in instances in-between involving other characters, however.

I'm going to go more into depth with Oscar, as I've included the cut-content, so he lives past the Undead Asylum.

"I would hate to harm you after death... So, go now. And thank you." - Oscar of Astora which our two leads meet.

In the Age of Ancients, the world was unformed, shrouded by fog. A land of gray crags, archtrees and everlasting dragons. But then there was Fire. And with Fire came Disparity. Heat and Cold, Life and Death, and of course... Light and Dark.

Then from the Dark, They came, and found the Souls of Lords within the Flame. Nito, the first of the dead, the Witch of Izalith and her Daughters of Chaos, Gwyn, the Lord of Sunlight, and his faithful knights, and the furtive pygmy, so easily forgotten.

With the Strength of Lords, they challenged the dragons. Gwyn's mighty bolts peeled apart their stone scales. The witches weaved great firestorms. Nito unleashed a miasma of death and disease. And Seath the Scaleless betrayed his own, and the dragons were no more.

Thus began the Age of Fire. But soon the flames will fade and only Dark will remain. Even now there are only embers, and man sees not light, but only endless nights. And amongst the living are seen, carries of the accursed Darksign. Yes, indeed. The Darksign brands the Undead. And in this land, the Undead are corralled and led to the north, where they are locked away, to await the end of the world...

Cold. Dark. Decrepit.

The iron bars before him cascaded to the broken floors, preventing his escape, as looming shadows made him unsure if he wanted to know what was further down the empty hallway. Not that he could see much anyway. His only light source was the beam of light pouring through the just as decrepit roof that offered little heat through the coldest nights.

With an exhausted sigh, he dropped a heavy head to his knees.

It was impossible to know how long he had been imprisoned. The sun never set at the Undead Asylum, but he knew he had been there for days, if not years. Enough time had passed for him to come to terms with his now ghastly appearance; dead and dry skin, his once green eyes now empty black socket holes, his entire build shrunk enough for him to look like a walking corpse.

In hindsight, he was.

Damn this curse.

Damn it.

He knew he was unable to die because he'd attempted to end his own life in this very cell only to come back. Death was a welcome choice to the alternative. He would rather perish than spend eternity in this godforsaken place.

Fate was a cruel, fickle thing.

The fate of the Undead. It shaped both him and the other human inhabitants of this very prison, although they were Hollow, him appearing to be the only sane left. It wasn't like he could strike up a conversation with his fellow inmates. Everyone around him had ages past become savages of the dark, incapable of speech, consumed by despair that knew of no other purpose than chaos and war.

The sound of heavy plates slithering against each other had his ears sharpen. Walking? He wasn't alone.

Whatever it was appeared close now, but as he peered down the hallway, he saw nothing. His heart began to beat in rapid successions. Clenching his plated fists, he braced himself, expecting some kind of warden to reveal himself.

Before he could recollect his thoughts, a corpse fell through the roof.

He frowned. Ascending his eyes to the sky, their tightness mellowed, the silhouette of a man blocking most of the light as he glimpsed him through the stone.

It had to be an Undead -– and a sane one nonetheless - that had managed to escape. He was covered in plate.

The figure nodded at him but said nothing before he disappeared.

Casivir directed his glare to the corpse to see a dim light from a worn waistcloth beckon him closer.

His brows drew together once more. He palmed his hand to the jagged floor, pushing his weary body up before approaching the dead visitor that now shared his all too confined cell.

Once he reached its corpse, he caught the sight of a rusty iron chain with a key attached.

Pushing up the gate, a shrieking sound invaded his eardrums as the old metal pushed against the hard ground. A waft of air added to the chill already traversing his spine. The exit had to be close. He maneuvered the dark, clueless but vigilant to his surroundings, only to encounter the warden itself. The Asylum Demon.

Casivir drew his blade as the demon roared his way, only to curse under his breath discovering it shattered to the size of a mere dagger.

There was little chance he could take him out like this. He needed an alternative. Casivir remembered how to fight, yes, but he wouldn't make it worse for himself if there was no need.

He was Undead. He had all the time in the world. It wasn't like the demon was going anywhere.

Not before long, he witnessed a boulder break down a wall of stone, only to find the very same knight that had helped him. He appeared severely injured. There was a hole in the roof above him, about the size of a man, so he must've fallen through.

"Oh, you... You're no Hollow, eh? Thank goodness," the man said, voice weary and soft-spoken. "My name is Oscar of Astora."

Casivir genuflected. "Is there anything I can do?"

"I'm done for, I'm afraid. My insides are damaged. I'll die soon, then lose my sanity. I can feel it coming," he replied, helmet echoing his words. "I wish to ask something of you. You are a godsend, to come at this moment. You and I, we're both Undead... Hear me out, will you?"

"It is the least I can do. What would you ask of me?"

"Regrettably, I have failed in my mission. But perhaps you can keep the torch lit," he said cryptically. "There is an old saying in my family. 'Thou who art Undead, art chosen. In thine exodus from the Undead Asylum, maketh pilgrimage to the land of Ancient Lords. When thou ringeth the Bell of Awakening, the fate of the Undead thou shalt know.'

"Well, now you know... And I can die with hope in my heart," he finished with what sounded like a tired smile. "Oh, one more thing... Here, take this." Oscar reached for his belt, fumbling with a golden flask attached. "An Estus Flask, an Undead favourite. Think of it as a liquefied healing herb if you were ever to suffer more than necessary. Oh, and this." He handed him a key. "Now I must bid farewell. I would hate to harm you after death... So, go now. And thank you."

"Oscar... Join me. I could use your aid."

Oscar chuckled mirthlessly. "I am afraid I can barely walk. Nor do I wish to burden you. I have made my peace."

"I am fairly known within the walls of this prison by now. I will not need to reinvigorate. At least not yet," he replied, eyes briefly turned to the beam of light piercing through the stone. "You, however, have been at the mercy of the Asylum Demon... am I correct?"

"Yes... yes, I suppose the roof gave it away," he replied with his head tilted to the very same light, releasing a half-hearted chuckle.

"There is yet time."

For a moment, Oscar simply looked at him. "Your faith is... inspiring. My mind however darkens. Are you certain?"

"I'll take my chances," he said with a soft smile, extending his hand holding the Estus.

After a moment of reconsideration, Oscar reached out to the flask. He hesitated. His fists clenched before reopening once more.

He wearily drowned the substance and Casivir assisted him to his feet. There was a soft groan at the pull, Oscar's head sagging before his knees gave after, but he was offered a shoulder to regain his balance.

Walking was no option in his state, so Casivir took a firm grip on him and effortlessly flung his rather limp body onto his back.

Carrying him to the closest bonfire proved little trouble. Oscar would be safe there. He had already cleared the dungeon of Hollows, but once another flame was added to the ember, they would return. Nevertheless, Casivir was willing to fend them off again if need be. Now he had to get past the Asylum Demon. As his companion rested by the bonfire, he stepped up to the door and readied the broadsword he'd earlier retrieved.

The demon roared.

"...and so we meet again," he muttered, sunlight reflecting on the handheld metal.

The journey to Lordran, the land of the Ancient Lords, was perilous. A crow brought both him and a reinvigorated Oscar to the bonfire casting light upon the shrine known as Firelink, tended by a firekeeper, maintaining the ember from extinguishing.

In Lordran, they parted ways, hoping to run into each other again.

There were two Bells of Awakening. One far up and one deep below. Casivir had already lost track of time to know how long he ventured.

"Ah, hello! You don't look Hollow, far from it!"

There was a man standing on a balcony, gazing upon the sun, appearing to have been lost in thought until Casivir approached. Despite his troubles, Casivir had managed to regain his humanity - if only momentarily - his rather pale features now on full display; his eyes were a bright emerald green, dark hair Swept Back and a five o'clock shadow.

This was the first human being he had encountered in Lordran that didn't show any signs of depression or insanity.

"I am Solaire of Astora, an adherent to the Lord of Sunlight," the man added, eyes crinkled behind his helmet to reveal a smile. "Now that I am Undead, I have come to this great land, the birthplace of Lord Gwyn, to seek my very own sun!"

Well, he might not have depression, but he did appear somewhat insane.

That much was certain.

Casivir was brought back to reality once more when the man –- Solaire –- continued to speak.

"Do you find that strange? Well, you should! No need to hide your reaction. I get that look all the time! Hah hah hah!" he finished, although his inquiry made it clear he knew humor; after all, Casivir's face was well-hidden below a helmet of his own.

"It is certainly an odd mission, yes, but I am all the more grateful to meet someone appearing to have his wits about him."

"Oh, ah-hah! So, I didn't scare you? I have a proposition, if you have a moment."

"By all means."

"The way I see it, our fates appear to be intertwined. In a land brimming with Hollows, could that really be mere chance? So, what do you say? Why not help one another on this lonely journey?"

Someone was actually willing to help him.

"Well... only a fool would turn away aid."

"This pleases me greatly! Well then, take this," he replied, grasping Casivir's hand and closing his fist around a soapstone. "We are amidst strange beings, in a strange land. The flow of time itself is convoluted; with heroes centuries old phasing in and out. The very fabric wavers, and relations shift and obscure. There's no telling how much longer your world and mine will remain in contact. But, use this, to summon one another as spirits, cross the gaps between the worlds, and engage in jolly co-operation!"

"That appears a bit too simple, does it not?"

"Of course, we are not the only ones engaged in this. But I am a warrior of the sun! Spot my summon signature easily by its brilliant aura. If you miss it, you must be blind!" he replied and laughed, releasing him.

Casivir bowed his head. "I'll put it to good use. Good to meet you, Solaire. It is... refreshing... to see a different view to all this."

"Why, one must not lose hope! Do so, and you become Hollow, and who would want that?"

"That is true, yes," he replied, taking a few steps back as to leave. He had a mission he promised to embark upon. Helping Oscar fulfill his wish was the least he could do.

Casivir briefly stopped, the man before him having turned back to the sun. "Solaire?"

"Oh, hello there."

"You'll remain here?"

"I shall stay behind, to gaze at the sun. The sun is a wondrous body. Like a magnificent father! If only I could be so grossly incandescent!"

Casivir found himself smiling a little. "I see. Goodbye for now, Solaire. I hope we meet again."

"I have no doubt. Or, perhaps somewhat. Time is convoluted, after all!" he replied and laughed again.

Each time Casivir came across Solaire's glowing signature, he made sure to summon him, the two appearing to work exceptionally well together. Solaire with his Sunlight Straight Sword and Casivir with his Zweihander. They became an unstoppable force.

It was the beginning of a truly special bond between two Undead.