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Teyvat Tales: the Bloodstained Knight

Stories are all around Teyvat when you care to look. You can find pieces of history and lore from the environment or even from the artifacts’ and weapons’ descriptions. This is one such story, which paints a picture of the time around 500 years ago from the current time in the game.

The Bloodstained Chivalry Set

Like all other artifact sets, the set contains a flower, a feather, a vessel for liquids, a timepiece, and a piece of headgear. This particular set may be obtained in the Clear Pool and Mountain Cavern Domain in Liyue, along with the Noblesse Oblige set.

Its 2-set effect increases Physical DMG, while its 4-set effect increases Charged Attack DMG and cancels the stamina cost of doing one. 4-set effects only last for 10 seconds, though. It was the best (and only) Physical DMG-increasing artifact set for a long time, but now it has been replaced by the Pale Flame set.

Though not an artifact, the Black Sword from the Battle Pass is related to this artifact set. It was the weapon used by the knight, after all. The sword’s passive ability seems to mesh well with the set, though both can only be enjoyed by a physical longsword wielder such as Kaeya.

A Bit of Introduction

500 years ago in Teyvat, a mysterious cataclysm destroyed the once-prosperous nation of Khaenri’ah. It’s theorized to be an underground nation where they had to rely on Khemia for plant life. While the whole truth of the event (what exactly caused it, for example), it caused a wave of shadowy creatures to swarm upon the surface world.

By that time, the Knights of Favonius were led by Arundolyn and his best friend Rostam. Their story will be explored at another time, but suffice it to say that Rostam was the one who trained the White Knight. The latter is the hero of our story, as the artifact set was once in his possession.

The White Knight

He was once a noble-born knight trained by Rostam, the Wolf Pup. Rostam instilled in him the principles of justice, chivalry, and swordsmanship, and the Knight took them to heart. From then on, he wouldn’t hesitate to jump in to correct any perceived injustices. With his armor polished to a mirror sheen and a sword just as clean, he set out to rid the world of injustice.

He even saved the maiden who owned the Maiden’s Beloved set. The maiden offered him many things as a reward. However, he only accepted a single flower, insisting that chivalry was its reward. He continued with his journey, unknowingly bringing along the maiden’s heart. The poor maiden waited and waited, but it was in vain, for his path would never cross hers again.

His fight for justice brought him far and wide, cutting down monsters. Whether those monsters were from the calamity or the evil borne from men, he swung his sword until they stopped moving. Slowly, slowly, he began taking pleasure in slashing, piercing, cutting, and skewering his foes.

The Bloodstained Knight

In his fervor to cleanse the world, he convinced himself that that pleasure was justice being served. He was doing the right thing, wasn’t he? He was cutting down monsters that deserve to be put down. “This was all for justice,” he said.

A mysterious, unspecified figure had tried to set him straight. “Slaughter is slaughter, no matter what cause it is for,” they admonished. The Knight wouldn’t listen and continued with his merciless fight. In his mind, his slaughter in the name of justice was justice as well.

Over time, his mirror-like armor and sword bathed in blood. Whether it was of his foes or from his wounds, he didn’t know. As he pierced, cut, and slashed his foes, the blood splashed on everything he owned. All the blood turned him black, and he terrified those he tried to save. In the process of cutting down monsters, he transformed into one himself.

Figuring that he would no longer be accepted anywhere, he went into the ruins of Khaenri’ah. It was the source of all the monsters he fought against, after all. He intended to die fighting against them there, but he found out the ‘ultimate injustice’ instead. The people of the ruined kingdom were put under a curse and were the monsters he fought against all this time.

Having ‘died’ (perhaps as his former self) and finding out this fact, he pledges his service to the Abyss.

Conclusions and Theories

Many things can drive people mad in Teyvat. For example, there is the gods’ lingering resentment that the Yaksha was tasked to eliminate. That incurs in them a ‘karmic debt’, one that drove all but one into madness. Even then, the remaining one is plagued by its effects. Similar to this is the ‘Tatarigami’, the phenomenon affecting a part of Yashiori Island where a god was slain.

The Abyss also influences beings that it touches, as evidenced by Tartaglia’s character stories. He wasn’t as battle-hungry and conflict-seeking before his stay in the Abyss. He became almost a different person afterward, though his protectiveness for his family never really changed.

At any rate, the Knight’s fight against monsters exposed him to either (or both) of the above. That may be an explanation of why he became so obsessed with the idea of justice and cleansing the world. He was bathed in the blood of demons and monsters. While they may not be the same, both have mind-altering effects.

As for his pledge, perhaps that means the Traveler has a chance to meet this being of legend. Aside from that, we have a piece of the puzzle of the cataclysm, mainly, that the people of Khaenri’ah are cursed. The nature of this curse is still unclear, as well as who placed it on them in the first place. There are still too many other missing pieces. As the game’s story progresses, we’ll have a better picture of what happened then. There are more stories to come, so look forward to those. Keep on enjoying Genshin Impact!

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