After defeating Martyr Logarius, equip the crown he drops near the lamp and approach his throne. A secret way will open, and you may proceed forward to meet the Queen.
Future Press game guide description: " Annalise is the queen and sole survivor of the Vilebloods, vampiric aristocrats born from forbidden blood who once lived in Cainhurst Castle. With the exception of Queen Annalise herself, the Vilebloods were murdered during a genocidal invasion by Logarius and his band of Executioners. Logarius then sealed the queen in an illusory prison and assumed the role of its warden, repelling any who ventured into the castle and threatened to break the seal. After freeing Logarius from his fate, you can either honor his wishes by finishing what he started, or swear an oath to the Vilebloods and take up arms against the Healing Church."
Annalise is an immortal, Queen of Cainhurst and the last of the Vilebloods. Those of Cainhurst are the line of nobles that ruled over the land for ages. It is likely they were the ruling aristocracy of the land of Yharnam, before the Healing Church's theocracy, putting them in direct opposition to the Healing Church’s ascent to power. The nobles were long time imbibers of blood and familiar with its effects. This along with the evidence of the Loran Chalice descriptions and what we can extrapolate from sources on the Pthumerians strongly indicates that the sanguine (meaning “blood-red color” or “optimistic or positive, especially in an apparently bad or difficult situation”) plague has been around long before the Healing Church. Perhaps what made the Church special was that their blood was provided to a large populace, rather than an aristocratic elite?
To deal with the beasts that appeared because of blood consumption the nobles of Cainhurst instructed their servants to discretely dispose of the beasts. These servants were called knights for the sake of appearances, likely to hide their true objective from the populace who would no doubt be fearful and possibly attempt to revolt against the nobles if they had known what was really going on. But the knights were not necessarily as discrete as the nobles hoped they would be. The Cainhurst way is a mix of nostalgia and bombast (“high-sounding language with little meaning, used to impress people.”). They take great pride even in the blood-stained corpses of beasts that they leave behind, confident that they will stand as examples of decadent art. This kind of attitude, seemingly contrary to the noble’s directives, must surely have led to the populace coming across these blood-stained beast corpses at times, and while impressive, would likely not have been as appreciated by the people as the Cainhurst nobles might hope or lead themselves to believe.
These servants of Cainhurst were not Vilebloods. They can still be found in the castle, keeping it tidy and defending it from invaders. If they had been Vilebloods, no doubt Logarius and his Executioners would have disposed of them in the same way the servants used to dispose of beasts when he ‘cleansed’ Cainhurst of ‘corrupted blood’. Annalise herself says that she (and you when you take the oath) are the last of the Vilebloods.
Almost everything associated with Cainhurst comes from vast wealth. Their knights set, a set given to their servants; is described as regal, with intricate goldwork, and made from the finest leather. The Noble Dress is finely tailored and the Reiterpallasch is described as elegant. The armor of the Vilebloods themselves is made of thin intricately designed silver. All this shows the Cainhurst nobles were no strangers to riches.
Nearby Castle Cainhurst there was a college called Byrgenwerth. A place where scholars learned of history and archaeology. Once a group of young Byrgenwerth scholars discovered a holy medium deep within the tomb of the gods. This led to the founding of the Healing Church, and the establishment of blood healing. But a scholar betrayed his fellows at Byrgenwerth and brought forbidden blood back with him to Cainhurst Castle. It was there that the first of the inhuman Vilebloods was born.
From this point, much of the history of Cainhurst can be surmised, but is speculative. It is easy to imagine that there would have been scholars who were loyal to the nobles of Cainhurst, perhaps those of Cainhurst had intentionally planted a traitor amongst the scholars to keep abreast of their findings. Alternatively, this scholar may have thought that as rulers of the land, the Cainhurst nobles should be the first to receive the rewards of the scholar’s discovery. Whatever the case, forbidden blood was taken to the nobles. It was there that the first of the Vilebloods was born. It is very likely that this was Annalise. The strongest evidence for this is that Annalise is immortal. She is the only surviving Vileblood and appears to be special. Since she is immortal, she must have lived for a very long time, long enough to be there from the very beginning.
Where the forbidden blood came from is never explicitly confirmed in game, but there is some strong evidence for a possible origin. First we must look at the Pthumerians and then the Great Ones:
The Pthumerians were superhuman beings that are said to have unlocked the wisdom of the eldritch Truth. The old labyrinth that the scholars investigated (“the tomb of the gods”) was carved out by the Pthumerians. These Pthumerians were mere humble guardians of the slumbering Great Ones to begin with but their descendants felt entitled to name themselves as leaders. "Pthumeru Ihyll" was the title of both the Pthumerian monarch and its capital. The Queen, or monarch (the Pthumeru Ihyll) of the Pthumerians was called Yharnam.
The One Third Umbilical Cord and Oedon Runes give us relevant information about the Great Ones: “Every Great One loses its child, and then yearns for a surrogate, and Oedon, the formless Great One, is no different. It was corrupted blood that began this eldritch liaison. Human or no, the oozing blood is a medium of the highest grade, and the essence of the formless Great One, Oedon. Both Oedon and his inadvertent worshipers, surreptitiously seek the precious blood.”
From this we can gather that the Pthumerians unlocked the eldritch truth, and that the blood of Oedon began the eldritch liaison. There are a lot of implications to this lore.
We know that Yharnam was pregnant, and that she carried a special Child of Blood from the Blood Rapture Rune description. We also know that her followers yearn for her blood, with little hope of requitement. But where did this special baby and special blood come from? It was clearly not blood that all the Pthumerians shared, since they yearned for it. The evidence seems to point towards Oedon as the source of this blood that would one day be labelled corrupted or forbidden. Oedon, just like the other Great Ones, yearns for a surrogate child, and blood is his essence, a medium through which he could impregnate a worthy carrier for his child. This liaison appears to have had some interesting side-effects on Yharnam and eventually the Vilebloods which will be discussed further on.
We can also be confident that the scholars investigated the tombs of the Pthumerians, because the Pthumeru Chalice has made it to the surface, and is worshipped in the Church of the Good Chalice in Old Yharnam. This chalice provides one with access to the tombs after undertaking the correct ritual. It is not a huge leap to imagine that the Byrgenwerth scholars were able to obtain the blood of Yharnam, Pthumerian Queen during their 'prospecting'.
The idea that the Vileblood bloodline links back to the blood of Yharnam, Pthumerian Queen is supported in a number of subtle ways throughout the game shown through the many parallels between Annalise, Queen of the Vilebloods and Yharnam, Pthumerian Queen. See the Theory titled “The corrupted blood of the Vilebloods is Yharnam, Pthumerian Queen’s blood” for details.
So, when the traitorous scholar of Byrgenwerth brought the forbidden blood back to the Cainhurst nobles, it appears that they first brought it to Queen Annalise. We know that the nobles of Cainhurst had a king from the Crown of Illusions description, but from the majority of evidence in game, it appears that the Queen was of a higher standing than the king, most likely because women were able to bear special children. Annalise consumed this blood and became the first Vileblood. Annalise is clearly unique, because she is immortal. This implies that her followers, even the king were not the same as her. By the time the player reaches Cainhurst, all of the Vilebloods have been murdered apart from Annalise, simply because she cannot be. Perhaps the reason for this is because, like the player, the Vilebloods of Cainhurst only became Vilebloods because they drank of Annalise’s blood, and not because they drank the original blood brought to the castle from the Byrgenwerth traitor. Which would mean that Annalise consumed all the blood brought by the traitor.
In the time of Annalise’s rule she had royal guards; loyal guardians and hunters of blood, who hunt prey as they search for blood dregs. Blood dregs are found in ‘echo fiends’, that is to say, the blood of hunters. Queen Annalise partook in these blood dreg offerings, so that she may one day bear the Child of Blood, the next Vileblood heir. These Vileblood hunters would wear paper-thin silver armour said to deflect blood of ill-intent, likely the beast blood of the hunters which would eventually transform them as it does the hunters. They also wielded chikages in their search for blood dregs, which implies that the blood magic of Cainhurst only began after the Vilebloods were born.
The One Third Umbilical Cord says that it was one of the heirlooms used to contact the Great Ones, originating in the child of Vilebloods and that long ago, in an encounter with the Great Ones, a contract was established, establishing the hunters and the Hunter’s Dream. From this text it is implied that Annalise was able to conceive a Child of Blood. Did the Great Ones take the baby away? It is unclear, and seems to contradict Annalise’s attempts to obtain blood dregs so that she might one day bear a Child of Blood, unless she is attempting to bear one again. Perhaps the term ‘Vilebloods’ used in this particular description instead refers to Yharnam’s bloodline and her baby Mergo which we know was used as a lure to draw the Great Ones.
How long the Vilebloods hunted hunters is unclear, but it may have been for a significant period of time. The Vileblood Register says that it keeps a record of the Vilebloods through the ages, implying a significant length of time. Whatever the case, the Vilebloods eventually became the targets of the Healing Church and the Executioners.
In his time, Master Logarius led his Executioners into Cainhurst Castle to cleanse it of the Vileblood. Why did this happen? There may have been numerous reasons. See the theory section titled “Why the Vilebloods were targeted by the Executioners.” for details.
Any or all of the stated reasons under "Why the Vilebloods were targeted by the Executioners" may have been the motivation for what happened next. The Executioners, under the leadership of Master Logarius entered Cainhurst and slaughtered all the members of the Vileblood and Cainhurst bloodline. The ghosts of Cainhurst maidens can be heard endlessly weeping and seen wandering the halls with bound hands and cut throats, implying that the Executioners did this to them, perhaps as a way of bleeding them out like is done with animals and sacrifices in reality. The Executioners even killed the King and took his crown, one of the precious secrets of Cainhurst that reveals illusions and exposes mirages that hide a secret. Perhaps the King had descended to meet the Executioners in battle but was defeated. Despite the apparent success of the attack all did not go well and Master Logarius became a “blessed anchor”. This means that Logarius realised that Annalise was immortal. She was the source of the vile blood, but she could not be stopped. So Logarius ‘martyred’ himself. First he imprisoned her behind a metal mask (what looks to be iron or silver). Annalise will complain that she is prisoner to “this wretched mask”. The mask likely serves a number of purposes. One, is that the mask imprisons her, making it impossible for her to eat or drink anything. Since she is immortal and therefore unable to die from hunger or thirst, she most likely suffers greatly. The mask would also stop her from seeing light, forcing her to live through one “piteous night” after another. Finally, if she cannot eat or drink, then how can she partake of the Blood Dregs that she is offered? This is likely the primary reason her head was bound, to stop her efforts to create a Child of Blood. This would mean that the Blood Dregs offered to her by the player are more of a symbolic gesture than an effort to further her goals, though it’s likely they do ease her mental suffering somewhat.
But Annalise is still able to create new Vilebloods by sharing her blood. And this meant that Logarius had to hide her away from the world. To do this, he hid her behind a mirage, and donned the crown that would mean only he could ever gain access to her again. To protect his secret he stood guard over her for ages, knowing that the only way anyone would every partake of the vile blood again is by defeating him.
So Annalise was trapped behind a mask and kept as prisoner by Logarius for ages. All her followers, including her husband the king, were murdered and she sits alone in the dark. It is no wonder then that she wants to die. When the player attacks her she will say: “Enough. If only Our life was so easily forfeit… Grieve not, for Us. How sad this is.” clearly implying that she is indeed tired of these “piteous nights.”
Interestingly, Annalise seems to have a unbreakable streak of pride in herself and her lineage. Despite having no subjects, she is still a queen, and when the player refuses to kneel before her, she will not consort with them.
It is possible to propose to Annalise using the Ring of Betrothal. This ring was imbued with some special meaning by the Great Ones. Perhaps Annalise realises what that meaning is? In the age of the Great Ones, wedlock was a blood contract, only permitted to those slated to bear a special child. When proposing to her she will tell the player that their worth is too great, that the path of marriage would lead to further ruin and that she would see no harm befall the player. It may be that she simply does not care for the player, though her words imply otherwise. Based on what she says it seems that marriage in Bloodborne is not something to be taken lightly and that there may even be a threat to one’s life, perhaps if they break the contract, or the ring may actually have detrimental effects on those who are unified, if they do not bear a child of blood since the ring only belongs to one slated to bear a special child, and if the mask stops her from partaking in blood dregs, Annalise would knows she isn’t able to. Whatever the case, it is interesting to speculate.
In the end Annalise is another tragic figure in the world of Bloodborne. She is one of the few souls left truly alone, enduring tremendous suffering and without any means of recourse.