The Bearer of the Curse is the player character and main protagonist of Dark Souls II.
The Bearer of the Curse became undead at some point, hollowing until they had no recollection of their former life. Desperate to find a cure, they were drawn to the walled off kingdom of Drangleic, where a cure to the undead curse was rumoured to exist. Journeying through a portal and guided by a Fire Keeper, the Bearer of the Curse found themselves in the Things Betwixt. Finding there a hut with the remaining Fire Keepers, the Bearer of the Curse is made to remember more of their past and is cured of their hollowing through a Human Effigy.The Bearer is then guided towards Majula to seek the Emerald Herald. The Herald, in turn, tells the Bearer of the Curse to seek the king, Vendrick, to find their answers and claim the throne, but warns that the Bearer will never find the king with a soul so pallid, instructing them to seek out the four Great Ones and to claim their power.
When about to light the last primal bonfire, the Bearer of the Curse is surprised by the Scholar of the First Sin, who emerges from the bonfire. The Scholar asks if they want to "shed the curse", unless they have already joined the crestfallen, he tells them that there are two paths: to inherit the order of the world, or destroy it. He admits that very few have come this far, and yet the Bearer's journey is far from over. The Scholar asks of the Bearer to seek Vendrick, "he who almost became a true monarch", for he will guide their way. After this, the Scholar will disappear, letting the Bearer of the Curse light the primal bonfire.
The Ancient Dragon will give the Bearer the Ashen Mist Heart, which allows one to peer into the memories of things long withered. Should the Bearer of the Curse again seek out Nashandra's council, she will warn that the dragon is a false deity and is in fact no more than a prop. Still, she will direct the Bearer of the Curse to go to the Forest of Fallen Giants, to use the Ashen Mist Heart to peer into the Giants' memories. Should the Bearer of the Curse choose to do so, they may use the Ashen Mist Heart on Vendrick's belongings in the Undead Crypt. Doing so will allow the Bearer to speak directly to the king as he was before he hollowed. Bitter and resigned to defeat, the king will council the Bearer of the Curse, warning them of the futility in seeking fire, of the dark that lies within them, and of the children of Manus, Father of the Abyss He will tell the Bearer to seek three crowns of power, belonging to fallen kings.
The Bearer of the Curse will journey to the fallen kingdom of Shulva, Sanctum City, once ruled by the Sunken King. Next, the Bearer of the Curse returns to the Old Iron Kingdom, to seek the Old Iron King's crown. Finally, the Bearer of the Curse travels to Frozen Eleum Loyce, once ruled by the Ivory King. Once the Bearer of the Curse has found all three crowns of old, along with Vendrick's own crown, the fallen king will create a new crown for the Bearer of the Curse that makes them immune to the hollowing effects of the curse. Bidding the Bearer to seek strength, and asking them whether allowing the flames to fade is truly their only choice, the king sends the Bearer of the Curse on their way.
Below Drangleic Castle, the Throne of Want awaits. Here the Emerald Herald will meet the Bearer of the Curse one final time, declaring her journey completed. She warns that if the Bearer of the Curse proceeds, Nashandra, knowing the Bearer of the Curse will link the fire, and coveting the power of the First Flame and the Great Soul, will come for them. She urges the Bearer of the Curse to put an end to Nashandra.
Then, the Bearer must decide between two outcomes:
- Proceed to the Throne: In this ending, the Bearer of the Curse will accept their part in the cycle of the world, and take the throne. Doing so means that they will either sacrifice themselves to link the flame, or allow the flame to continue fading and become the Dark Lord. Which the Bearer of the Curse chooses is unknown.
- Leave the Throne: In this ending, the Bearer of the Curse rejects the throne, and bitterly walks away, seemingly to seek another, more permanent way to end the curse.