Bloodborne is hot for this kind of melodrama. I can't pass up the opportunity to go dramatic with this one. For those sensitive to spoilers I don't go in depth about strategies or hidden alcoves, but I do touch lightly on some story elements and put my own spin on them. You have been warned! Also, I do not present this as a deconstruction of the games canon; this is simply what the game inspired me to write.
A Hunters Journal: Part 1
What damp hell is this. What foul metropolis do I find myself in. I would kill myself to escape this waking nightmare, but it would make no difference. The only boons I find in death are the pain of my life puttering out, the same waking nightmare and the same monsters lurking in the same byzantine cityscape. A cycle of torment. The release of madness does not come. I could join the other monstrosities and scour the streets for blood and flesh then. I could chase other hunters to their grave and marvel at their courage to trudge on in futility. But what life would that be; they seem trapped in the same spiral as myself.
I must keep my wits about me. I must persevere, lest the hunt never end. Lest the burning dusk never dissipate to the desperate night and give rise to the hope of a rising sun. I shall keep records of my trials. Forgive their haphazard construction; they stink of the same madness of this city. The order I present them could not possibly be chronological. Endless death has a way of ruining one's sense of time and place. No, chronology is for the sane. They can only exist in the mania of the city that birthed them: the city of Yharnam.
A burning totem locked in eternal flame. The man-shaped monsters are often transfixed by the fire as it dances on the corpse of this were-beast. The heat is powerful, but the crucified creature never burns; it only hangs on its broken cross in the mock position of bashfully presenting the air to its immediate right. I wonder if its soul is trapped in the same eternal rebirth as mine. Does it wake when I'm not around to struggle against the flame and ululate in torment. The man-shaped monsters would watch it forever if I never slaughtered them. But I do. Without mercy or hesitation. Some call me a beast as they die. What if I am already tainted and prowling the streets; their retched forms just a figment of my broken mind.
I knock on doors in desperation, looking for a sane mind to complement my own; an anchor to weigh myself, a reassurance that my sanity is in check. Most show me only scorn. Some spit "hunter" from behind their doors like it tastes bad. Others laugh the wicked, manic laugh of a shattered psyche. It echoes through the streets as I wonder this urban maze. Their laughter is a sign post; I know when I am near the were-christ by the clarity of their laughter.
I find a window pouring light through draped chains, locks, and torn fabrics. A scared child pleads for his missing parents. He knows my "smell"; he knows it as a hunters stench. The child offers me a music box. He says it can help his father "remember" them. Could the lilting sounds of this trinket truly rip through the veil of madness. Would he, upon hearing this box's song, turn normal, reform as a man, tip his hat, and carry on home to comfort his ailing child. I do not cling to such a thought, but I take the box anyway.
The child says his mother went to find his father. She is adorned with a beautiful red brooch. I silently wonder if I haven't already destroyed them countless times already.
They sky burns at the horizon. No matter how long I traipse about, no matter how many times I am reincarnated, the sun is locked in position. As though it fears the night itself. As though it fears what the night could bring to this damned city. Does it watch in horror as I revel in the bloodshed. Does it reel with disgust as I, when freshly wounded, coat myself in the blood of my adversaries. When I am weak and can't find life to bleed from, does it look away as I crush vials of blood in my hand to open fresh, feeding wounds so they can eat the fluids for succor. Does it fear my tide of vengeful vampirism will devour all the life that lives here while it slumbers. Only to wake on the eastern side of an empty city inhabited by a single mad inhabitant drenched in blood and gore.
Meticulously crafted statues caught in poses of apparent terror. Such craft and effort for the creation of something so macabre could not have been done with the city in its current state. I doubt the monsters here posses the deft hands needed for something so well executed. I am left with two suppositions: they were created before the city's fall into terror, or they were a cult bent on the salvation or damnation of the city. The candles perched on their hands imply an offering to the sky, maybe hoping to give power to the savior sun. Or did their ceremonies turn on them when they saw the true nature of their rituals as they were turned to stone.
I murdered a fellow hunter. He was a fierce adversary. I may have killed him a single time, but he paid it forward with countless deaths of my own. He could transform into a terrible beast. Is this my fate should I linger too long? Would I give into the madness and become something far more powerful. Would I become a god amongst the savages.
After the melee I found the mother and her brooch, as red as the child described. I realized my folly too late. They child knew the smell of a hunter; he could name the smell he knew it so well. I brought the child the brooch, his whimpers tell me he understands. He knows he is alone.