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The Fallen, known in their own language as the Eliksni, are an insectoid alien species, infamous for being notorious scavengers and raiders. Four-armed Fallen are remnants of a mighty civilization that had been flourishing under the Traveler's grace until an apocalyptic event called the Whirlwind, much akin to humanity's Golden Age and Collapse. The Traveler fled, leaving the survivors behind, but after many centuries, the Fallen found her once again in the Solar System and have been seeking to reclaim their glory by retaking control of the "Great Machine" at any cost.. Roving Fallen bands scavenge whatever technology and weapons they can find and rally under the banners of various warring Houses and crime syndicates.
The Fallen are a nomadic race of pirates and scavengers descended from a once-great civilization. This is evidenced by their social organization into various Houses by the manner of meritocratic nobility, the banners and flags of which are still flown like heraldry. The Fallen search the stars for artifacts of their lost civilization. They first arrived in the Solar System after the Collapse, arriving in their massive Ketches to loot and pillage humanity's former worlds, leaving grief and wreckage in their wake.
The Fallen are antagonistic toward the Cabal, Taken, Hive, and Vex, and are known to be in conflict with the latter two over territory and technology. They have ordinarily avoided the Cabal until the Taken War, when the House of Wolves attempted to make their new home on Mars using abandoned Cabal bases. They lack any type of established stronghold such as the Citadel or the Hellmouth, instead preferring to squat in ruins or inside their ketches, going from place to place in search of a potential home.
The Fallen's name for their own race is "Eliksni". They were once graced by the Traveler, which they named the "Great Machine", and were presumably uplifted by its gifts in the same manner as humanity. Their ubiquitous cloaking technology was originally designed as toys for children. The Eliksni made during their Golden Age twice the advancement in space exploration than Humanity. During this time, they came to control multiple star systems until a event known as the Edge Wars brought infighting among the Houses and later ended by the House of Kings and House of Judgement to usher a Golden Age. Their homeworld of Riis and civilization would be destroyed by a unforeseen event called the "Whirlwind". In the aftermath, the surviving Fallen became embroiled in a bloody civil war over their civilization's ruins, before achieving a tenuous peace and embarking on a journey into space to locate the Traveler in order to return to greatness. The Fallen eventually arrived at the Solar System shortly after humanity's Collapse, and rediscovered the Traveler on Earth.
When the Fallen first arrived in the Sol System, they terrorized humanity, conducting raids and attacks against outposts. Very early into these attacks, they started to meet opposition in the form of Guardians, who fought back against them time and time again. The Fallen grew to resent the Guardians, seeing them as an obstacle that prevented them from claiming the "Great Machine", and believed they were dooming them and their people. Eventually, the space below the Traveler turned into The City, as more and more people gathered below the Traveler, and thus walls were built to defend them. As time wore on, the Fallen began to understand that if they wanted to take back what was theirs, they would need to do it with force. This was the start of the Eliksni siege.
At some point during the Dark Age, the House of Rain encountered a human settlement protected by Saint-14 on Mercury and proceeded to destroy the settlement and kill the survivors, but were unable to kill Saint-14 who grew to hate the Fallen race after he witnessed Dregs devouring children.
Rezyl Azzir began venturing out from the Last City to combat potential threats which earned him great enmity from the Fallen. Eventually, a Captain of the House of Devils named Eksori ambushed Rezyl in an attempt to kill him to gain glory, however Rezyl was easily able to fend off the ambush. Later he teamed up with two other Guardians to kill a Kell whose Ketch was stationed in the Tescan Valley between two mountain peaks.
In an attempt to take the Traveler, the House of Devils staged a coordinated attacked on The City in a battle that would later be called Six Fronts. During the battle four orders of Titans protected the newly constructed walls of The City against six enemy approaches, and not a single front faltered. The Devils faced off against many Guardians who would later become legends, such as Saint-14, Osiris, Zavala and the Iron Lords.
After the Battle of Six Fronts, Saint-14 stepped down from Vanguard Commander to pursue his crusade against the Fallen, and nominated Osiris to take his place to protect the city from future assaults. Osiris questioned Saint’s motives having seen the Fallen not too different from them. However Saint disagreed after fighting representatives from every House and believed it was a joint effort to exterminate them.
At some point Saint-14 encountered the noble Sekris, Baron of Shanks, whose House settled by the edge of the system to avoid human conflict. Sekris recollected Saint’s sieges of Boyle Pass and Weapons of Rain, but questioned if the Great Machine still communed with him. Saint answered with silence and spared Sekris causing him to desert his race.
Following the murder of several Guardians at the hands of Taniks, the Scarred, the Speaker dispatched Saint-14 and Osiris to eliminate the deadly Fallen mercenary, but Cayde-6 located Taniks and killed him. This elevated Andal Brask to the vacant seat of the Hunter Vanguard after losing a dare to Cayde over who would kill Taniks. However it was later revealed that the resilient Fallen had survived the encounter.
Craask, Kell of Kings, manipulating the other Houses, pushed for a united effort against The City. Kings, Devils and Winter stood together against The City, with the House of Wolves being the only major House unable to join because of The Reef stopping them en route. The three Houses fought against The City and its Guardians in what would later be known as the Battle of Twilight Gap, with the Devils leading the charge. The City managed to push back the united Fallen, with Lord Shaxx leading a counter attack that defeated the Houses. At the end of the war, the legendary Titan Saint-14 led a bloody assault to dislodge the remaining Fallen that directly surrounded the City. In what would become forever known as a the "Crusade of Saint-14", the brave Exo fought against Solkis, Kell of Devils, killing him with a headbutt and bringing the Fallen offensive to its final end.
While on a mission, the Hunter Vanguard Leader, Andal Brask, was murdered by the renegade Fallen mercenary Taniks, the Scarred. This promoted Cayde-6 to assume the role of Hunter Vanguard and attempt to execute Taniks.
The Reef Wars
The House of Wolves intended to join the Battle of Twilight Gap alongside the other houses, but were stopped at Ceres when the Reef intervened. Their Kell, Virixas was killed in the initial clash, along with a massive portion of the house, which would later be called The Scatter. This started a period of time known as The Reef Wars. During the course of the wars, Skolas, the Rabid, through savagery and cunning, rose to the Wolf Kellship. He then turned his full attention towards The Reef, and the two forces clashed bitterly for many years. The wars ended when Variks, a member of the House of Judgment who lived among the Wolves, betrayed Skolas to the Reef resulting in his capture along with most of his House.
Weakening of the Houses
In the wake of Twilight Gap, the House of Devils was ruled by Riksis, Devil Archon. Riksis met a sudden and unexpected end at the hands of a newly risen Guardian, while attempting to track down a missing warp drive. With the Devils Archon dead, this opened up the way for a fireteam of Guardians to attack the The Devils' Lair and destroy their Prime Servitor Sepiks Prime. With Sepiks' destruction, the Devils were now effectively leaderless.
During a mission in the Hellmouth on The Moon, Guardians were caught in the middle of a House of Exile raid against the Hive. Leading the raid was Frigoris, Exiled Baron, who became a priority target due to his station in the Exiles, and was dispatched by the Guardian.
The Vanguard received word that Wintership Simiks-Fel was on the surface of Venus, and began a mission to assassinate Draksis, Winter Kell of the House of Winter. Fighting through Draksis' Kell's Guard, a Guardian made their way onto the Fallen Ketch and faced Draksis in his throne room, killing him and beheading Winter's Leadership. Afterward, perhaps as an attempt to replace Draksis, Winter enlisted Taniks, the Scarred to break into the Prison of Elders and retrieve Aksor, Archon Priest. However, a fireteam of Guardians quickly ended him and the Fallen which broke him out, leaving them leaderless.
Later, the Hive general Omnigul would lead a fireteam of Guardians through House of Kings Territory in an attempt to stop them from hunting her. Phyksin, King Baron personally attempted to stop the Guardians, but was killed in the resulting battle.
The Wolf Rebellion
Initiated by the return of Skolas, now calling himself the Kell of Kells, the House of Wolves rebelled against the Awoken. The Wolf Rebellion started with an assassination attempt on The Queen and a mass prison break from the Prison of Elders where most the former Wolf nobility was being held.The Queen opened the Reef to Guardians of the City, with the intent of recruiting them to put an end to the rebellion. The Guardians tracked Skolas to Venus, but were unable to capture Skolas and he was able to gain a number of the Winters allegiance.
Traveling to Earth, Skolas sought to gain the allegiance of the House of Devils and House of Kings. While he set loose the Silent Fang to kill off the Devils remaining leaders, he sent one of his Barons, Yavek to negotiate with the Kell of Kings. However, the Guardians intervened as they killed a large number of Silent Fang assassins and killed Yavek and two King Barons, Paskin and Vekis. Skolas returned to Venus once more, where the Guardian encountered him attempting to wield stolen Vex tech in order to pull the House of Wolves through time, only to be subdued and captured.
The Queen then began her Queen's Wrath by placing bounties on Wolf nobility such as Beltrik, the Veiled and Drevis, Wolf Baroness. Taniks, the Scarred was also hired by the Wolves to plunder the Hellmouth and steal from the dark. However a fireteam of Guardians arrived to kill him, pursuing the mercenary through his Ketch before meeting his end. Later on the order of the Queen, Skolas was sent to the Prison of Elders, where he was pitted against the same Guardians who captured him and was executed, effectively ending the Wolf Rebellion.
The Taken War
Every Fallen house was devastated by Oryx's arrival, with great numbers of Eliksni being Taken and made to serve Oryx. The House of Devils and House of Kings presence in the Cosmodrome diminished as their strongholds the Devil's Spire and King's Watch became lairs for Shades of Oryx. Variks at some point was in negotiations with Grayris, Baroness to leave her house, however she would succumb to Oryx and become his Taken Champion alongside Lhoks, Exile Baron, Irxori, Lost to Oryx and Keksis, the Betrayed. The Wolves also suffered a loss in the form of Driviks, the Chosen, which forced the Guardians to re-enter the Traitor's Ketch and eliminate the swarm of Taken.
As the Taken War progressed, the House of Winter managed to take advantage of the Reef's disorganization to break into the Prison of Elders and retrieve another Archon Priest. However the Taken on Venus attacked and scattered their forces, Taking the Archon in the process, turning him into Nixis, Hunger of Oryx. Guardians managed to destroy Nixis, ending Winter's second raid on the Prison as easily as the first.
Also during this time, the House of Devils attacked the Warmind Rasputin's bunker, attempting to take control of the Warmind and its weapons. Rasputin send out a distress signal, causing a fireteam of Guardians to come to the Warmind's aid. The Guardians followed the Devils inside, and fought against S.A.B.E.R.-2, a massive Shank re-purposed by "rising Devil Archons" to crack into Rasputin's core. S.A.B.E.R.-2 was destroyed, and the Devils were forced to retreat.
Wolves on Mars
The House of Wolves emerged from hiding, rallying under Keldar, an Archon that had escaped the Reef Wars and Skolas' Rebellion. Keldar offered the Wolves a new god to worship, the rebuilt Orbiks Prime, the Wolves' previous god. Orbiks Prime attempted to reassemble the House on Mars, directing its servants to seize Cabal outposts already weakened by the Taken invasion. However, thanks to intel provided by Variks, the Loyal, the Guardians hunted down Keldar and Orbiks, destroying the Prime Servitor and killing their Archon, leaving the Wolves broken and leaderless; this time, for good.
Under the leadership of a new Archon, Aksis, the House of Devils and their Splicer Sect attempts to find Golden Age technology bore fruit in the form of SIVA deep in a quarantined area of the Cosmodrome called The Plaguelands. The Splicer sect used SIVA to modify themselves, transforming themselves into cybernetic beings, with Aksis becoming wholly a machine. The Devils attacked the Iron Temple, attempting to steal information about SIVA to further their understanding of it. They were stopped by a Guardian and Lord Saladin, the last Iron Lord. The Guardian ventured deep into Splicer territory to the SIVA replication chamber called Site 6, destroying the source of the SIVA and cutting off the Splicers from their SIVA supply.
Afterwards, Sepiks Perfected, their former Prime revived with SIVA, was tracked back to its lair, and was hunted down by a fireteam of Guardians. Sepiks was cornered, and was destroyed once more. Another fireteam of Guardians was dispatched to stop a Splicer priest named Kovik who was experimenting on the Hive along with SIVA. The Guardians descended into his lair and killed Kovik, along with a Hive Ogre he was vivisecting. Afterward, another fireteam stopped a Splicer attempt to keep Kovik's experiments alive by invading the Hellmouth and capture more Ogres to experiment on.
With the Splicers backed into a corner, a larger fireteam attacked the Splicers lair directly. There they encountered Vosik, the Archpriest, second in command of the Splicer sect. They hunted him deep into the wall the Splicers had dug into and destroyed him. The guardians continued to explore the Splicer lair and discovered the Devils had found a facility similar to Site-6 as well as their leader, Aksis, the Archon Prime of the Devils, lurking inside. Prevailing against Aksis's terrible technological might and using SIVA against him, they managed to destroy Aksis.
In desperation, the Devil Splicers proposed an alliance with Taniks' Crew and used SIVA to resurrect Taniks, the Scarred as Taniks Perfected. Unfortunately, their efforts were discovered by Variks, the Loyal who relayed their plans to the Vanguard. The Guardians led a Strike on the Moon against the Splicers, Taniks' crew and the Hive who were harassing them. Despite their efforts and Taniks' new abilities, they failed. With Taniks dead again, the Splicers were once again left broken and leaderless, thereby bringing an end to the SIVA Crisis.
Eventually the Fallen House of Devils withdrew completely from the Cosmodrome, leaving behind piles of ceremonially burnt banners and armor. The other Fallen Houses—Winter, Exile, Wolves—appear to have done the same, withdrawing en masse everywhere and abandoning their former territories.
Rise of Dusk
After Dominus Ghaul occupied The Last City, a seemingly new faction of Fallen resurfaced within the Solar System, the House of Dusk. These Fallen sport hoods, purple robes and armor, along with new equipment not seen prior to their resurgence. From Ghost scans of artifacts and tactics, it appears that the House of Dusk is a merger of all the other Houses. Apparently, so many losses and the deaths of so many leaders forced the Fallen to unite out of sheer desperation. Even so, it is unknown who currently leads the House of Dusk as the identities of its Kell, Barons and Archons is also unknown.
The emergent House of Dusk found themselves in a war with the invading Red Legion forces, later engaging in dogfights with Red Legion fleets in a dispute of the Shard of the Traveler. In addition, House of Dusk troops are battling a guerrilla war with the surviving Guardians in the European Dead Zone, battling for supplies, while also battling the Vex on Nessus. They also follow the Vanguard's surviving fleet to Titan, hoping to scavenge from the fleet and the lost Golden Age facilities on the moon. Upon arriving, however, not only are they forced to fight the Vanguard's forces but also a newly discovered Hive brood that has infested the New Pacific Arcology. A three-way battle began between the Guardians, Fallen, and Hive for control of the facilities.
No Fallen communications have been detected from their old territories on the Moon, Mars, or Venus. They have set up beacons in different parts of the System, each are sending signals outbound to their former homeworld.
Despite the Guardians being preoccupied with the Red Legion and liberating the Last City, they didn't turn a blind eye to the Fallen's activities. After defeating Ghaul and driving the Red Legion from the City, Guardian forces began missions that started disrupting Fallen operations that led to the deaths of numerous Servitors, Captains, Mining Crews, Fallen Walkers, valuable Ether supplies and even an Archon Priest. Even so, the Vanguard still don't know who truly leads this new House.
Capitalising on the lack of leadership in the post-Taken War Reef, a group of Dregs who collectively titled themselves the "Scorned Barons" banded together after they were cast out from the House of Exile. They waged a civil war against the Fallen Houses for practicing the old Eliksni ways and the terror they unleashed had grown as powerful as any Kell, even having driven the House of Wolves to extinction through the destruction of all their Servitors by the hands of Reksis Vahn. They even successfully allied with a local Hive brood when Hiraks took In Anânh as his consort.
A short while after the Red War, Hunter Vanguard Cayde-6 gathered a small group of his most trusted Guardians and, with the assistance of acting-Regent-Commander Petra Venj, hunted down the Scorned Barons. At a final standoff, the Barons were defeated and those not killed were thrown deep within the Prison of Elders. Only one at the scene, their Archon, Fikrul, Shadow Priest, managed to escape.
At some point following the Taken War, Prince Uldren; who had been corrupted by Darkness and working with the House of Kings, discovered a mortally wounded Fikrul who was once a well-regarded Archon Priest of Kaliks Prime within the House of Wolves, but was cast out after speaking against the Great Machine and lamenting his species' dependence on Servitors for survival. Wishing to save him, Riven granted Uldren's wish and part of Uldren's Darkness transferred into Fikrul's Ether, raising him as the first of the Scorn.
Both Fikrul and Uldren found each other as kindred spirits and usurped Craask, Kell of Kings and immediately took over the House of Kings. Fikrul then docked and demoted the former Kell to Dreg status before slaughtering the House in a grand betrayal as Uldren decided that the Kings were too bothersome for his ambitions. With the use of Dark Ether, Fikrul began to hammer the Fallen society and raised the deceased Kings as a new undead army named the Scorn.
During the opening of the Red War, Variks watched from the Prison of Elders as the Red Legion cut a swath into the Solar System. He tried to send a warning to The Last City under the name of Greenraven but was unable to do so as the Red Legion knocked out the City's communication capabilities. He also sent a warning to the Fallen Houses, including the Kell of Kings, to convince them to help him unify and save what was left of the Eliksni. Variks watched in horror as his sensors showed the Traveler getting trapped within the Traveler Cage, and the Guardians fall.
After the Red War, Variks was tasked with integrating a mysterious group of Fallen in the Prison of Elders. To his shock he learned that his former friend, Fikrul, was the leader of the so-called Scorn and was allegedly responsible for killing Craask, Kell of Kings. With the last of the Kells assumed dead, Varik's hope of a united Eliksni crumbled as he locked all of the Barons into cryopod cells.
Variks asked his old friend about the whereabouts of Kaliks Prime, whom both made a pact to hide away, and asked Fikrul if he had betrayed the last Prime to the Taken and if that is the source of his corrupted ether. Fikrul replied that Kaliks had abandoned the Eliksni altogether. All the while Uldren attempted to test Varik's loyalty with his Kell, Queen Mara Sov. However Variks found himself thinking about the old House of Rain proverb of the Kell of Kells.
After much thought, Variks decided that he would become the Kell of House Judgement so that he could unify his race. To do so, he figured that he would need to cause a prison riot so that he could abandon his service to the Awoken without being noticed. He prepared by running simulations on the prison security systems, making adjustments to them based on the simulation results and had a final talk with his High Servitor, deeming it the last Warden of the Prison. He then had a final talk with Fikrul and Uldren on the day of the prison break, informing Uldren that he had more service to do. The Mad Warden, acting as Variks, then sent a message through the speakers announcing a malfunction in the security system and had commenced a shutdown and reboot, which resulted in the all the prison cells and cryopods opening.
As the cells opened, Variks made his way through the secret passage way that Petra and Cayde used to smuggle in Fikrul and Uldren into the Prison, and recorded two messages to be sent through the prison's relay. The first message he recorded was with his synth voice device turned off to talk in High Speak, to give commands to those Eliksni who would answer the call of House Judgement. The second message he recorded was spoken with his synth device about the the whispers he hears from all those around him of his insulting titles, and how he will become the Kell of the House of Judgement, an envoy for the Eliksni. He boarded a ship full of the prison's ether supply and was saluted by a Vandal bearing the colors of the House of Wolves.
Release of the Scorn
A year after the Red War came to a close, the Guardian and Cayde-6 traveled to the Reef to investigate the unrest but were ambushed by Uldren and the leading seven Barons of the Scorn, along with their spiritual leader and Archon, Fikrul, the Fanatic. Cayde was then beaten, his Ghost destroyed and then killed by Uldren in cold blood.
Outraged by the death of the Hunter Vanguard, The Guardians, acting upon their own accord and unsanctioned by the Vanguard, return to the Reef to start the hunt for the Scorn and the rogue Awoken prince to avenge Cayde-6.
Upon the breakout of the Scorn, the House of Dusk also began to fight the Scorn, beginning a new civil war within the Eliksni race.
A Fallen mob was sought out in the Tangled Shore by Petra Venj and the Guardian, where their leader, The Spider, agreed to work with The City and Awoken to destroy the Scorn once and for all. The Spider provides information and bounties on the Scorn for the Guardian in return for taking out the Scorn's leaders and operations, thus allowing the Fallen mob boss to reestablish control and influence over the Tangled Shore.
Ultimately, Uldren plotted to find his sister, Mara Sov, using traces of both Light and Darkness to open a gateway within the Awoken Watchtower, with the Scorn aiding him. However, the Guardian began to disrupt the Scorn's operations in spreading chaos in the Reef. One-by-one, the Scorn Barons fell to the Guardian, leaving Fikrul and Uldren himself cornered at the Watchtower. The Guardian stormed the Watchtower which was corrupted with Taken forces, and battled with Fikrul. They succeed in defeating the Archon but upon delving deeper within the Watchtower, they find a monstrous creature that is revealed to be the one of the forces behind Uldren's actions, the Voice of Riven. The creature, disguised as Mara Sov, used him to gain its freedom and soon captures him.
As it turns out Riven, the last known of the wish-granting Ahamkara, became Taken after Oryx invaded the Reef but upon his defeat, appeared to serve a new master and aspired to break free of the Dreaming City. Appearing as Mara Sov to corrupt Uldren's mind into opening the gateway, Riven has a chance to emerge and corrupt the material world. Fortunately, the Guardian arrives and battles with the twisted creature. After a long struggle and despite the creature's strange powers, the Guardian succeeds in destroying the Taken Chimera. The creatures destruction also frees Uldren but leaves him weak and defenseless in the face of the Guardian and Petra Venj.
In the end, Uldren Sov, former disgraced prince of the Reef and murderer of Cayde-6, is executed, avenging Cayde's death and all those who perished during the Scorn's rampage in the Reef. While remnants of the weakened Scorn remain in the Tangled Shore, the Guardians continue their vigilance over the region, both to keep their bargain with the Spider and to make sure the Scorn no longer pose a threat again.
Though the Scorn was nothing more than a pawn to Riven into opening the gateway within the Dreaming City, the Scorn remain active in their efforts in spreading chaos within the Reef. Over time, the Scorn's Archon, Fikrul, returns after his supposed death, swearing vengeance for the deaths of his fellow Scorn Barons. The Guardians track Fikrul back to the Scorn's lair and battle with the twisted Archon once again. Despite his Dark Ether powers, Fikrul was defeated once again but he swears that he will return to have his revenge. In addition to the Guardians campaigns, the Taken have also managed to deal more damage to the Fallen as they continue to corrupt the Dreaming City and spread the Taken curse.
While the recent events took its toll on the Fallen, new leaders for their people have risen.
Variks, the Loyal declared himself the Kell of Judgement after experiencing the tragic fall and hatred inflicted on his people, in the same way that Skolas declared himself Kell of Kells after the events of the Reef Wars. Variks, finding the Kell within himself, is now making a stand for his dying race.
All the while, Mithrax, the Forsaken has defected from the House of Dusk and sworn allegiance to the Last City, eventually joining a fireteam of Guardians and founding the House of Light. He argues that humanity, not the Fallen, are deserving of the Traveler and promises to Kell the mind-open Eliksni. The Spider still continues to work with the City by placing bounties on high value targets.
Upon discovering that Mara Sov is still alive, Yevik, a former House of Wolves member now working with the House of Dusk, begins plotting a return to his former Wolf Kell; who he is still loyal to.
With the demise of the House of Wolves, former members of the house can be seen working with the House of Dusk including the Silent Fang, Queenbreakers, Pallas Siegebreakers and those affiliated with Beltrik and Irxis.
Anarchy of the Scourge
With the Fallen in disarray, a new leader in the name of Siviks, Lost to None emerged to lead a newly-formed anarchist gang, the Kell's Scourge. At some point before the conflict, Siviks fell out with his brother, The Spider, and formed his own rival syndicate upon escaping incarceration at the Prison of Elders. In his crusade to spread chaos, Siviks and his crew stole technology from the Black Armory and distributed it to the Fallen across the system. This forces Ada-1, the Black Armory's curator, to ally with the Guardians to end Siviks' threat before they can use the tainted weaponry to do some serious damage.
Fearless and growing fast, the Scourge gained the support of deserting House of Dusk members and made a push into the Spider's territory at the Tangled Shore, establishing themselves as his competition. After defeating several "anarchist" Fallen and retrieving their Armory contraband in the EDZ, an intercepted signal revealed Siviks's center of operations on Nessus. Siviks himself was found by The Conflux alongside Telksis the Pillager, but escapes and lefts Telksis alone to defend their Black Armory caches. Guardians were then tasked with eliminating Serekis-9 who was guarding the Gofannon Forge and then dispose of Zevious-3.
Seeking the Black Armory Vault after their failure to secure the forge, the Scourge carries out the first Fallen incursion on the Last City since the Twilight Gap, utilizing a terrifying, enormous war machine named Insurrection Prime to breach the ruins of the city and occupy a desolate section in the Scourge of the Past Raid. It is the most powerful Prime Servitor ever encountered, rivaling Aksis, Archon Prime in sheer power, and required a team of six to bring it down.
After an immense battle between the Guardians and Insurrection Prime that reduces the area to ruin, the forces of the City succeed in destroying Siviks' army and the Prime Servitor monstrosity, saving the Black Armory Vault from falling into the wrong hands. Siviks then met his end in a final standoff against the Guardian at Niobe Labs, where the mad Fallen sought to claim the last remaining forge and the secrets of Project Niobe, an secret initiative to creating enhanced Black Armory prototypes. Despite Siviks' efforts, reinforcements and usage of the labs' defense protocols, the Guardian succeeds in striking down the Spider's brother, marking the end of the Scourge's leadership.
Fall of The Old Ways
Following Siviks' death and the dismantlement of the Kell's Scourge, the Last City's agents have conducted thorough investigations regarding the remaining strength of the Fallen. Chiefly, the House of Dusk continues to weaken and in the absence of leadership, they continue to splinter and radicalize.
However, agents have noticed that in the wake of the contemporary houses dwindling strength, a new recent trend of Fallen "syndicates" has begun to emerge. This is taken as a symbolic sign of the continuing eradication of the Fallen's old society. Likely an artifact of multi-generational colonization of human strongholds, the agents believe that because these syndicates have no relation to any indigenous Fallen culture, as young Fallen are appropriating and imitating human mythology in the absence of a strong cultural heritage of their own. In addition to the Houses's loss of status and power, several personalities have emerged as potential candidates as leaders.
Other agents have begun investigations in regards to the whereabouts and motives of Variks (whose role in Uldren and the Scorn's release is now known). Despite once being a reliable ally and informant, the Last City's agents have discovered his part in the Scorn's early rampage and are aware that he is now styling himself as Kell of Kells, yet still representing the House of Judgement. Though some agents, like the Warlock Aurnor, have called for Variks's arrest, the Awoken under Petra's leadership claim jurisdiction and responsibility over the former scribe and thus have barred their attempts to apprehend Variks.
Another individual agents have investigated is Mithrax, leader of the so-called "House of Light." Though the agents acknowledge that Mithrax has worked alongside the Guardians in the field on more than one occasion, authorities and agents both treat reports regarding Mithrax with a healthy degree of skepticism until otherwise confirmed.
Regarding investigations into more aggressive figures among the remaining Fallen, Fikrul, the Fanatic, remains a threat. Though his reign over the Tangled Shore was limited, he possesses sufficient skill, hatred, and motive to warrant an on-going surveillance. Given Fikrul's propensity for self-resurrection, the Vanguard continues to deploy fireteams to suppress the Fanatic and have reached out to the Cryptarchy and the Gensym Scribes to request guidance as to find a way to make his destruction permanent.
Another Fallen that has emerged and caught the agents' attention is Eramis, or Eramis, Kell of Darkness. Once a House of Devils Baroness incarcerated during the Wolf Wars, Eramis successfully fled the Prison of Elders during the mass escape orchestrated by Variks, who at the time, had dubbed herself as "the Shipstealer". Eramis is a classical Fallen pirate of the old ways: vicious, uncompromising, and possessing cunning of the highest degree. Field reports indicate that she has begun rallying violent dissidents to reconstruct the House of Devils from scratch. As a result of this, many agents believe Eramis to be the most viable candidate for universal Fallen reunification, and urge the Vanguard and others to prioritize her destruction.
Return of Eramis
Much later following Siviks' death and Eramis' escape of the Prison of Elders, the Shipstealer called upon her Devil Loyalists and agents to conduct a notorious raid on the Old Tower of the Last City. Her goal was to infiltrate the ruins of the Guardians old home and breach its Cryptarch Vaults for anything of value left behind during the evacuation at the beginning of the Red War and the subsequent efforts to rebuild. Ultimately, Eramis's prize was a powerful weapon that the Guardian themselves used during a previous conflict with the Fallen: Outbreak Prime of the SIVA Crisis. Likely, the Devil Baroness sought to use the weapon's SIVA properties for her benefit.
Unfortunately for Eramis, Mithrax of the House of Light contacted his Guardian allies for their aid in thwarting their efforts. Meeting at The Farm, the Guardians and Mithrax traveled to the Old Tower to stop Eramis's forces from escaping with their prize. Battling through the wreckage of their old home and through the cramped ducts of the wall, Mithrax and the Guardians finally caught up with the exfiltration team, lead by Siriks, Loyal to Eramis and Mimiks-1, Devil's Scion, before they could flee. Despite gaining reinforcements, Siriks was killed by the Guardians and the weapon was reclaimed to its rightful owner, now known as Outbreak Perfected. With their mission a success, Mithrax immediately jumps onto a Skiff and departs.
Sometime following Eramis's failed heist on the Old Tower, the House of Dusk began to conduct salvage operations and raids on Luna after hearing reports of renewed Hive activity. However, their forces were soon caught in the midst of a conflict between the Guardians, the Hive and the Darkness-related Nightmares. Said Nightmares soon took the image of some of the most notorious Fallen in the Solar System and began to spread terror across the system.
The Nightmares often took the image of Skolas (the Essence of Pride), Taniks (the Essence of Isolation) and Fikrul (the Essence of Insanity), which the Guardians battled to get a step closer in entering the Pyramid beneath the Scarlet Keep.
Dawn, Worthy and Arrivals
When the Red Legion hijacked the Sundial, the Guardian traverse through time to an early moment in Mercury's past. They encounter a young Saint-14 on his first off-world mission fending off an onslaught by the House of Rain. The Guardian aids Saint in an valiant show of strength by defeating the Fallen and later shares a vision of the present-day Last City. This act would inspire Saint to become the hero he becomes and fuel his crusade against the Fallen.
Following the conflicts with the Cabal on Mercury, The Almighty is discovered cruising towards the Last City, due to the actions of a vengeful Psion Flayer's Red Legion agents. To defend the City from total destruction, the Seraph Towers and Bunkers are activated by Rasputin, drawing the House of Dusk's attention. The Fallen rush to these Towers and Bunkers to see if they could reverse-engineer the technology within them, forcing the Guardians to protect them. The Guardians would later find out through the Towers that the Fallen have gained a new arsenal through the use of Overload Captains and Barrier Servitors, but the origins of them are unknown.
Following the arrival of Pyramids across the Solar System, the Guardians, seeking an audience with The Nine to understand the nature of the Darkness, venture into a strange and paracausal portion of their realm. The Nine conjure a Taken projection called the Kell Echo as an obstacle to show them that by using the Dark and Light Motes, their aforementioned power are the means to survive their battle against the Darkness.
Following the aftermath of the Lunar incident, Eramis abandoned the Devils banner and formed the House of Salvation from remnants of the former Houses of Devils, Wolves and Dusk to investigate an extra Reef territory called Niflheim. Unverified reports also suggest Variks, the Loyal to be among the group, unknown if he is co-conspirator or a prisoner, but it is suggested they discovered a dangerous entity on the site.
It was soon revealed that Variks and Eramis joined forces, despite previous enmity towards each other, and journeyed to Europa with as many Eliksni who answered their call to build a new home for themselves, Riis-Reborn, under the banner of the House of Salvation. However, while Eramis and her council did care for their people, their hatred for the Traveler poisoned their intentions and to Variks's horror, Eramis gained the power of Stasis from the Pyramid that dwelled on Europa, through a Splinter of Darkness. Dubbing herself the Kell of Darkness and spreading her "gift" to her followers, Eramis intended to not only return her people to glory but also destroy the Traveler for abandoning their kind centuries ago. Variks, refusing to allow his people to follow the path Eramis is leading them, flees Riis-Reborn with a Splinter stolen from Eramis. With little to no option, Variks finds a communications center and sends out a distress signal to the Guardians, warning them of Eramis's threat but the Splinter he acquired gets stolen by the Exo Stranger. The Guardian, who was on Europa scouting the Pyramid located there as many others of its kind arrived in the Sol System, heard his message and arrive just in time before he is executed by Eramis's forces. Despite being partially responsible for Cayde-6's death, the Guardians agree to help Variks combat Eramis before she creates an army of Darkness-empowered Eliksni which could destroy the Last City.
The Guardians enter into Riis-Reborn witnessing the Kell of Darkness granting the power of Stasis to her lieutenants but are caught during the gathering, forcing the Guardians to flee as Eramis's Stasis powers prove too strong for them to handle. Aware of the power the Dark Kell possesses, the Exo Stranger, Eris Morn and the Drifter emerge with similar Stasis powers as the Pyramid creates what the Exo Stranger calls a "Ziggurat" which would allow them to tap into the Darkness to gain the same power of Stasis, thereby granting them the power needed to battle Eramis and her House of Salvation. Though Variks disapproves of the Guardian using the same power as Stasis, he agrees there is no alternative. Knowing they cannot directly challenge Eramis, the Guardian and Variks work on dismantling her empire and army. They begin by targeting Eramis's strongest warrior and general, Phylaks, the Warrior. Striking down her soldiers to get her attention, Phylaks openly challenges the Guardian, calling them to meet her near the Nexus where the Vex on Europa dwell. Despite her strength and power over Stasis, the Guardian is able slay Phylaks, taking her Splinter of Darkness and robing Eramis of her general. Gaining momentum, Variks has the Guardian target the visionary behind Eramis's army, Praksis, the Technocrat, whose experiments allowed the House of Salvation's technology to wield the Darkness. Tracking the Technocrat to a Clovis Bray lab where the Exos were designed and made, the Guardian battles Praksis' machines before cornering him at the lab's core. Despite his devices and power of Stasis, the Guardians bring the Technocrat down, thereby preventing Eramis form acquiring more weaponry and machines from Praksis' research.
Without her Council, Varkis believes Eramis will now act recklessly and lash out. True to his prediction, Eramis is furious at the loss of two of her lieutenants and desires to retaliate. The Kell of Darkness orders Atraks to head to the "Crypt" and prepare the "body" and orders a message to be sent to Earth. The Vanguard intercept this message and Zavala informs the Guardian that the message is directed towards the Cosmodrome. Variks believes that Eramis is attempting to gain reinforcements from the remnants of the old House of Devils, who he knows would answer whatever call Eramis gave them. The Guardian arrives at the Cosmodrome just in time to halt the House of Salvation's efforts, witnessing them gathering a large number of Spider Tanks. Slaying the commanders in charge of the operation, the Guardian prevented such reinforcements from reaching Europa, enraging Eramis even further. Pushed to the brink, Eramis seeks another more reinforcements in the form of the Vex, by opening a portal Clovis Bray was experimenting on which would then allow the Vex to flood onto Europa. Believing that Eramis has truly gone mad, Variks warns the Guardians to make haste to stop her. Though Eramis activates the portal, the Guardians are able to halt the Vex by destroying the Belmon, Transcendant Mind.
With Eramis's reinforcements denied, Variks has the Guardians aid him to evacuating the Eliksni that wish to flee from Eramis. The Guardians are able to liberate skiffs holding such Eliksni from Eramis's forces and direct them to Mithrax of the House of Light, finally granting them safe refuge. With her forces backed into a corner, the Guardians re-enter Riis-Reborn to confront Eramis and end her dark reign. However, Eramis traps the Guardians and their Ghost in Stasis, threatening to overtake them. Heading the Exo Stranger's words to look within, they embrace the Darkness, freeing themselves and shocking Eramis. With Stasis at their command again, the Guardian battles with Eramis again but the Kell of Darkness is ultimately beaten to submission. Refusing to accept this defeat, Eramis is about to rise again but to her shock and horror, the Stasis she believed was hers to control begins to overtake her, completely turning her into a statue made out of Stasis, thereby ending her reign. The Guardians acquire her Splinter of Darkness and return to the Ziggurat, allowing them to enter the Pyrmaid, embrace the Darkness and fully acquire the power of Stasis.
Following Eramis's fall, the Guardians continue working with Variks, with the Eliksni scribe being granted temporary immunity by the Vanguard, in safeguarding flee Eliksni and holding back what remains of the House of Salvation. To ensure the House of Salvation doesn't regain its strength, Variks has the Guardians enter into the main foundry of Riis-Reborn, to sabatoge its factories, thereby stripping the House of Salvation of powerful warmachines. After striking down a powerful war brig, the Guardians are successful in shutting down the factory. During another mission, the Guardians enter Riis-Reborn again to push back the House of Salvation as they currently battle the Vex. The Guardians notice that the Salvation Fallen are handling the Vex better than expected which Variks takes as a sign that a new leader has emerged to take Eramis's place. That leader turns out to be Kridis, the Priestess, a fanatical follower of Eramis and the Darkness. Kridis seeks to regather the House of Salvation, believing that Eramis is not dead but resting and learning from the Darkness directly. Worse, Kridis believes she has the means to awaken the fallen Kell of Darkness. Rushing to where they defeated Eramis, the Guardians confront Kridis and her Prime Servitor, Yamiks Prime, House Salvation. Despite her Prime Servitor's power and Kridis's own Stasis power, the Guardian succeeds in slaying the Priestess, eliminating another leader of the House of Salvation.
Without Eramis or Kridis, Variks believes that many of the Fallen who pledged to the House of Salvation will likely scatter, taking refuge with either the House of Dusk or the House of Light. Despite this, Variks also worries that even though Eramis had fallen, her actions will fade and likely make her into a legend, a figure that would inspire others to follow her example.
Much later, the Exo Stranger would task the Guardians to raid the Deep Stone Crypt to prevent a remnant of the House of Salvation, led by Atraks, the last of Eramis's lieutenants, from gaining any knowledge left by Clovis Bray regarding the Exos. As the Guardians enter into the Crypt, they discover that Atraks had already transformed himself into a Fallen Exo, now calling himself Atraks-1, Fallen Exo. The Guardians chase Atraks throughout the facility but in a lab they discover that Atraks-1 had brought back an old foe as a Fallen Exo, Taniks, the Scarred, who angrily recognizes the Guardians who defeated him countless times. The Guardians continue to chase Atraks-1 until they corner him at the Clovis Bray space station, Morning Star. After a strong struggle and using Clovis Bray technology, the Guardians are able to slay Atraks-1 but their battle destabilized the space station causing it to crash land onto Europa. As the Guardians pull themselves out of the wreckage, they discover that Taniks also survived at the last minute by fusing himself with a Heavy Shank, turning himself into Taniks, Abomination. Once more, the Guardians battled the mechanical monstrosity that Taniks has become but despite his advanced weaponry and Salvation Fallen forces who survived the crash, the Guardians are able to finally slay Taniks once and for all. Though the Guardians are able to secure the Deep Stone Crypt, the Exo Stranger has the Guardians continue to monitor and protect the crash site to prevent any Salvation Fallen from salvaging anything useful or dangerous.
Not long after Eramis's fall and the fracturing of her empire, the Eliksni of the Tangled Shore and other locations of the Sol Sytem fall under prey of corruption in the form of the Wrathborn, forces that serve the Hive God of War, Xivu Arath. Using artifacts called Cryptoliths, creatures both Hive and not, are driven mad and to serve Xivu Arath, forcing the Guardians to return to the Tangled Shore after saving Osiris on Luna, though losing his Ghost Sagira. Once more, the Guardian makes a partnership with the Spider. In exchange for hunting the Wrathborn's leader the High Celebrant of Xivu Arath and containing the corruption, thereby restoring his territory and reopening the flow of Glimmer, the Spider would provide whatever resources and information they need. In addition, he would provide the services of his newest agent, Crow, Uldren Sov revived as a Lightbearer.
The Fallen are a hardy species, and can survive in a wide range of environments without heavy armor or complex modifications to their physiology. Fallen have four arms, partable mandibles and typically wear a helmet with a built-in respiration apparatus. Respiration is assisted by spiracles.  Through means either natural or artificial, the Fallen can regrow their arms if removed from their body. Their blood color is reddish purple. Fallen hatch from eggs and have soft and translucent shells when very young. It is implied that they molt at least once as they grow. Like the Hive, Fallen females may not require a male counterpart to produce children, as Eramis and her mate Athrys are said to have had many hatchlings together. It is also evident that Fallen are capable of reproducing with the Hive, and that Hive can be born with having Ether inside of them, despite their aversion to it; whether this is due to both species’ insectoid nature, or due to the Hive's propensity to evolve rapidly to fit their surroundings, is unknown.
Fallen depend on a substance called Ether to survive, which only Servitors can produce. Servitors convert scavenged matter and energy, presented to them ritualistically by the Fallen, directly into ether via unknown processes. While Servitors were revered in ancient times, they have now become a symbol of the degradation of Fallen society and their lost glory. Higher-ranking Fallen get a bigger ration of ether, and more ether allows Fallen to grow in size; this is why Captains are taller than Vandals or Dregs, and why Kells and Archons tower over other Fallen; the Kell of a House controls and distributes ether flow using their own personal Cipher. When a Fallen is killed, a quantity of ether escapes its body and dissipates.
The Scorn are very different physically from other Fallen, being "undead" Fallen resurrected many times through unknown means. Their exoskeletons bear bulbous masses, and many of them are of a sickly, pale coloration. They also are much more savage than the typical Fallen.
Fallen society is divided into a number of Houses, none of which are known to maintain friendly relations with one another, save for the House of Judgment, which was meant to live among the other houses and keep the peace. Each House is ruled by a Kell, who acts as the political leader of a House and commands a Ketch. Prime Servitors are exalted as gods among the Fallen, inspiring fanatical devotion from the House to which they belong and providing a steady supply of vital ether and new lesser Servitors. Archons serve as both high priests and chief engineers of a House, mediating between the Kell and the Prime Servitor in addition to overseeing maintenance of the House's machines. Houses require all three to be fully stable; without a Kell, a House becomes prone to infighting, without an Archon, a House's Prime Servitor is vulnerable to attack, and without a Prime Servitor, a House cannot produce new Servitors for ether. As such, Fallen do not take the loss of their leaders lightly. If any or all of these leaders were to be killed, then members of the House would panic and scatter, weakening the House to the point of being permanently broken.
Below the upper echelon of House leadership are the Barons and Captains and the individual crews they command. Captains are Fallen who have managed to gather a following of Vandals and Dregs, who serve as the Captain's crew, commanding respect through brute force. Most Captains swear fealty to a certain House, but some operate independently. A step above Captains in rank are the Barons, whose authority are second only to the Kells so they command their own Skiffs as well as their crews.
The majority of Fallen Houses consist of Vandals and Dregs. Vandals serve as both seasoned infantry and skilled workers. They aspire to become Captains and one day lead crews of their own. Dregs are the lowest class in Fallen society. Docked of their lower pair of arms in a ritual of humiliation and obedience, Dregs zealously fill the roles of shock troops and menial laborers in crews. The life expectancy of a Dreg is notoriously short, but those few who survive to be promoted to Vandals are permitted to regrow their arms.
House politics pervades all aspects of Fallen society, with loyalty regarded as chief priority. Camps and villages fall under the authority of their House's fiefdom, with children raised communally, likely to prevent them holding bias towards individuals as opposed to the House itself. The particularly fanatical are taken at an early age and raised to become the personal guard for their Kell.
Fallen Houses & Syndicates
List of appearances