Chapter Six

Cainhurst Castle

While in Yharnam blood is an object of worship, in Cainhurst blood is an object of desire. The Nobles of Cainhurst were elitist and aristocratic, enjoying form and elegance over strength or functionality, as described the Knight's Set: "Attire of the knights of Cainhurst. A regal piece graced by intricate goldwork. The Cainhurst way is a mix of nostalgia and bombast. They take great pride in the blood-stained corpses of beasts that they leave behind, confident that they will stand as examples of decadent art." In Cainhurst, your status at Court is everything. The closer you are to the Queen, the more important you are. The further away you are, the less you matter. The Blood Rapture Rune: "This rune resonates with servants of the Queen, carrier of the Child of Blood, who yearn for their Queen's blood with little hope of requitement. For them, they find solace in "Blood Rapture," that serves as a surrogate for their desires."

The highest of honors in Cainhurst was to be named a Vileblood, one of the elite inner circle of Queen Annalise. As evidenced by the ritual Queen Annalise makes the PC Hunter perform should they choose to become a Vileblood, the Vilebloods imbibed in the Queen's blood. While Yharnamites share blood through injection and transfusion, the nobles of Cainhurst seemed to drink it directly from the source, as Queen Annalise extends her wrist to the Hunter. The Vilebloods were the elite guard of the Queen, and would travel out to hunt for her, bringing tribute back to her in the form of Blood Dregs. We will explore the Vilebloods and Queen Annalise further in a later section, but for now let's focus on the lesser important figures in Cainhurst and what information we can gather from them.

"The old nobles, long-time imbibers of blood, are no strangers to the sanguine plague, and the disposal of beasts was a discrete task left to their servants, or knights, as they were called for the sake of appearances." –Reiterpallasch

While there are beasts in Cainhurst, they are much different from the beasts of Yharnam. There is no sign of lycanthropy, the main symptom of the condition we refer to as the Scourge of the Beast anywhere to be found in Cainhurst. Instead, the beasts of Cainhurst are twisted, malformed things that drain the blood from the ground. The official description of the Bloodlickers reads: "With no host left to defend Cainhurst Castle from the beastly siege, these deadly, vile creatures prowl the grounds, gorging themselves on the tainted fluid of the fallen."Indeed, the Bloodlickers seem far more interested in draining blood from corpses than they are of the PC Hunter. Unlike Yharnam's beasts which rip and tear flesh to shreds in pure rage, the Bloodlickers move quietly from corpse to corpse, drinking.

We have here an example of a very different kind of Beast, one wholly unlike the Beasts of Yharnam. Yharnam Beasts, we know, are the result of individuals succumbing to the tainted blood of the Great Ones, infected thanks to the use of blood ministration. The Bloodlickers, infested with Vermin, must have a different origin. Let us recall what Alfred says about Cainhurst. "Once, a scholar betrayed his fellows at Byrgenwerth and brought forbidden blood back with him to Cainhurst Castle." Whatever blood was brought to Cainhurst, it was most certainly not the blood of the Great Ones. It was something different, forbidden, impure. The introduction of this forbidden blood led to a new mission by the then-burgeoning Healing Church, and the formation of the Executioners.

The Executioners

Little is known of the Executioners. They were a group of Hunters who, led by a man named Logarius, traveled to Cainhurst and battled the Vilebloods. It would seem the Executioners existed in the very early days of the Healing Church, back when the Church was still operating mostly in secrecy. The Executioner Attire reads: "Attire worn by the band of executioners commanded by the martyr Logarius. Later became the basis for all Church attire, with its heavy draping of Holy Shawl." This would seem to suggest that the Executioners were the first case of an organized group of the Church operating in the open, as before then there was no section of the Church wearing their familiar uniform. What this means of Alfred is unknown. He claims to be a simple Hunter, perhaps he simply sought to emulate the teachings of Logarius. He certainly has a great deal of veneration for Logarius, his entire mission being to complete Logarius' mission once and for all to elevate him to true martyrdom.

Whatever Alfred's motivations behind following the path of the Executioner, we know that the Executioners of old did battle against the Cainhurst Vilebloods. From the accounts we have access to, it was not a close battle… Logarius' Wheel describes itself as being: "Used to slaughter the Vilebloods in Cainhurst. Bathed in pools of their blood, and forever steeped in their ire." Slaughter is the key word here. The nobles of Cainhurst were systematically executed, the Vilebloods were bludgeoned to death by the mighty Wheels of Logarius. For all their elegance and beauty, the Cainhurst Vilebloods were no match for the fury of the Executioners. But there was one Vileblood who could not be slain, Queen Annalise.

Queen Annalise

Annalise is a very strange figure in Bloodborne and, like I mentioned earlier, doesn't really seem to fit. She is most assuredly something far more than simply human. In fact, the Queen is immortal. There is no way to kill her; even Alfred, who rips her limb from limb, smashes her into pulp, tears out her organs, smears her against the floor, and leaves her nothing more than a pile of blood and meat, fails to kill her. Indeed, she is left simply writhing eerily."What good's your immortality now! Try stirring up trouble in this sorry state! All mangled and twisted, with every inside on the outside, for all the world to see!"-Alfred. The Queenly Flesh, a chunk of meat the PC Hunter can retrieve from her remains, reads: "This pinkish lump of flesh remains warm, as if cursed. All hail the undying queen of blood!" Annalise is never dead. Her consciousness remains inside of the meat, and can be used to repair her. Indeed, Annalise can even be restored from her mangled state if the Hunter brings the Queenly Flesh to the corpse in the Altar of Despair. But Annalise is not unique in this. She is not the only immortal Queen in Bloodborne.

Upon defeating Yharnam, Queen of Pthumeru, the Hunter receives the Yharnam Stone. It appears to be meaty, organic remains, and even has the faint outline of a fetus within it. The Yharnam Stone reads: "The Queen lies dead, but her horrific consciousness is only asleep, and it stirs in unsettling motions."

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