This was how it always was. It started with a vague sense of awareness before feeling slowly flowed in your limbs as your form took shape on the plane you had been summoned to. And yet, this time it felt different; a feeling that something was off. The noble opened his eyes as he felt his feet set down upon smooth stone.

His eyes snapped open fully as he felt the undeniable power of a demon before him, stronger than any he had met thus far. Before him sat a pile of chairs, which could have been thrones had they been a bit larger, which seemed haphazardly constructed. His eyes drifted to the top, where a much larger red and white throne rested at the crest, somehow staying stable despite the oddity of the structure. In it sat a man...long dead, if he had to guess, clothed in the flowing yellow robes of a monk.

Somehow, this man, as dead as he looked, was the source of the demonic energy he felt in the room. The monk's mouth opened and closed, as though speaking; there was no sound. But the noble heard him anyway. Whether telepathy or something else, he heard the voice in his head as though it were someone speaking right next to him.

Bow.

The word echoed loudly, as though said in unison by a chorus of every human whose soul the demon had absorbed. The noble felt a pressure on his shoulders, pushing him downwards. He shifted his footing and resisted the force, staring up at the fiend before him.

Bow.

The voices repeated the command, and the force increased, but the noble still resisted.

Demon! he shouted in thought. I will not bow to a corpse!

Then the crushing force disappeared. Inaudible whispers floating through the noble's head, and the robe before him stirred as though flapping in the wind. But there was none; the robe itself was the demon at work here. The so-called golden elder of Latria must be but it's puppet.

The false wind grew and the robe spun about, freeing itself from the corpse and flew towards him. For a moment he was consumed in the white and yellow folds before the robe wrapped itself about him.

He nearly lost his balance as he felt a sudden surge of demonic energy.

No hope...

He felt the force moving to attack him, though not physically. It likely wished to take him as it's next host.

A barren future...

The robe's demonic power was ancient, more so then any of the others the noble had faced. It's power, too, was far greater.

Place your trust in us...

He tried to fight back the thirst for souls he felt, doubtless a product of the robe.

Submit...

He turned, his rapier suddenly in his hand, and saw before him a human. Still sane, and with souls. A target. He lunged with reckless abandon, and his opponent easily dodged sideways, cutting into his side. The black-haired noble felt the pain, but the insanity of the robes cast it aside with ease and turned again to face his opponent.

A female dressed as a sorceress; a well-used falchion in one hand and a catalyst in the other. The two combatants stared at one another for a moment before the robe pushed him to attack again. The noble felt an ebb and flow to its power, almost as though the two of them were on opposite sides of a scale, pushing and trying to reach a balance in their control of his actions.

His thrust was still wild, but more controlled as the balance shifted towards him. Again, his opponent nimbly avoided the attack and brought her blade across his shoulder before retreating quickly.

The noble flinched, and backed off as he felt a measure of control come to him. He narrowed his eyes and considered his opponent, imagining the feeling of acquiring a human's soul. He wondered if it was similar to that of a demon.

The thirst for souls surged in him again as the robe pressed him to attack. His opponent, instead of dodging, slid her weapon inside his thrust, locking the falchion with his rapier as their handguards met. The position was awkward as he had his weapon in his left hand and his opponent, her right. He moved his right hand up to try to shove aside her weapon, but was surprised when she lifted her catalyst and pointed it at his chest. He had only a moment to hurriedly bring the shield between the attack, but the force of the explosion from the fireball sent him sliding backwards several feet.

The robe's power shouted silently in anger, and he found himself with a catalyst in his hand, colored yellow and pulsing with with the insane strength of the robe as he launched a fireball from it. His opponent again dodged the attack easily and the projectile crashed into the far wall with a fiery explosion.

The noble had another moment of strength over the robe and wondered briefly for his sanity. A foolish thing to do on a battlefield, indeed, but his opponent did not seem to take advantage of it. He shook his head as if to clear it and made a decision quickly. It was probably unreasonable to try to fight both the girl and the demonic robe and the same time, so he was going to take a gamble. He saw two options: he could fight with his blade and either die or fall to the robe's power, or he could fight with his mind and have a possibility of saving a human's soul. As tasty as it may be...

He felt the power of the robe push into his mind again, falling to his knees as he resisted with all his ability. The insane thirst for souls threatened to consume him, but the noble held on, focusing on his experiences, the things that made him different from the demons and power hungry "heroes" that had come to Boletaria.

He may be but a phantom, summoned by the cursed powers of this robe, but he had his will. He would not give in to the robe's greed and accept the dystopian vision.

Why...

He felt the voice of the robe speak in his mind. The noble instantly recognized the sign and redoubled his efforts; he clearly had a chance if the demon had ceased simply fighting for control, and was attempting to reason with him.

There is no hope for the future... As much as he could, he smiled, and replied.

You are a wretched fool. Perhaps it was a useless thing to say; it was a demon, after all.

Place your trust in us... The robe continued, ignoring his comment, but growing weaker. You cannot resist us...a demon's soul cannot be discarded...

I did not accept a demon's soul. Submit to me, fiend, and return to the darkness from whence you came. The noble continued the push, and knew what he could do. A demon's soul could be accepted by a human, but it could also be destroyed. Just as a blacksmith might take a pure metal and reduce it to manageable chunks and shards, he, too, could tear apart the archdemon's power, rendering as formless as that of the minor demons he often killed.

The foreign words in his head faded as he began the process, slowly turning the power of the robe into lesser souls. Sage Freke, the Visionary had said to him that a Demon's Soul was not a simple group of normal souls; it had a unique power all it's own. This, however, was not entirely true. As the noble now was showing, each soul consumed by the demon added to it's strength, and using what he knew of the soul arts, he could slowly strip this power from it until all that remained was the core, which he could send to the void with ease.

As soon as he did so, the noble noticed a change. His planar presence felt unstable; the energy from the black eye stone he carried began fluctuating wildly, likely as a result of the destruction of the demon. He felt his form grow weak and begin to fade, a normal occurrence when one was returning to one's own world.

Gripping the now-lifeless robe draped about his body, the noble threw it aside in one fluid motion, the garment falling at his side in a crumpled heap. He looked up to the human. She had not moved, simply staring at him, her weapon ready but otherwise motionless.

He could not speak as a phantom, and so said nothing. He tossed the catalyst he still he held in his hand forward, allowing to clatter at her feet as his physical portion of his form began disintegrate. His senses began to fade and his world slowly returned to darkness. But he had one triumph; he had saved a human's soul. He had won against the foolish greed of the demons, standing defiant to their goals and yet lived.

Boletaria needed a hero to save it from the colorless fog that consumed it. Not merely a skilled swordsman or an practiced magician alone, but a hero with altruism to match. And he had proven to himself that he would be it.


To be quite honest, I had practically no idea what I was going to write for this chapter outside of the fact that I wanted to robe to choose the main character as it;s new host because he wouldn't give in to the Old Monk. I just started writing some stuff down, and I came up with this "good ending," so to speak.

A couple notes: I took some liberty with how a couple of the things worked, as you might have noticed. Naturally, all the stuff about the souls was completely made up, with little if any basis in facts from the game. I hope it's reasonable enough despite the fact that I didn't try to cross-check it at all after writing it, heh.

I don't really think it was particularly good plot-wise, but I hope I at least was able to make it sound like Demon's Souls, with a sort of bland, fact-fact-fact commentary that would go with the atmosphere of the game.

I'd love to hear your thoughts, so review if you would, and thanks for reading.