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Katabasis was a Hunter and one of Emperor Calus' Shadow operatives. He was risen by a Ghost named Gilgamesh at an unspecified time after the Collapse, only to abandon the Last City during the Red War and entered the service of Calus' Loyalists. His last mission saw his demise aboard the Glykon Volatus in an experiment to help Calus commune with the Witness using the Crown of Sorrow and the Scorn. Katabasis’ last message was a distress signal, offering his Tex Mechanica Scout Rifle in exchange for escape.
Katabasis was in the streets of the Last City when the sirens started blaring as the Red Legion had launched their surprise invasion. Seeing the Cabal destroy the Tower firsthand and that the Traveler caged, his connection to the Light was severed and left him separated from Gilgamesh amidst the chaos. Katabasis fled the burning city in terror; regrouping with his Ghost as the two crawled out into self-imposed exile.
Shadow of Calus
By the time that the Red War had ended with the death of Dominus Ghaul, Calus and his Loyalists had begun inviting Guardians to the Leviathan including Katabasis. Joining the ranks of his Shadows, the Hunter began operating outside of the City's jurisdiction on illicit solo missions without the oversight of a Hunter Vanguard since the death of Cayde-6. Katabasis became keen to gain Calus' favor through a variety of different missions: including tracking game through the jungles of Venus, poaching strange quantum jellyfish in the storms of Saturn, and even putting down Red Legion traitors collaborating with the Emperor's daughter Caiatl.
At one point, Katabasis played a role in a major Loyalist operation to secure a stray Hive War moon on behalf of Calus. With the war moon turned into an Athenaeum World, Katabasis located the Crown of Sorrow: a Hive artifact of Ascendant authority that held interest to the emperor wanting a Shadow to command said race.
Katabasis and Gilgamesh were involved in an operation on Venus with Gaelin-4 and his Ghost Clip. Katabasis mentioned that he could not return to the Tower after Gaelin offhandedly mentioned Amanda Holliday. He also stated that he and Gilgamesh were not on friendly terms and continues the line of conversation by stating that he did not trust Gilgamesh. Gaelin asked Katabasis if he believed Gilgamesh was changing him, but Katabasis did not respond to this.
After several years working for the former emperor, Katabasis was gifted an imperial coin on Nessus; a royal invitation from Calus himself. At this point, he had doubts over whether to continue working as a Shadow, since he was heavily relied upon for jobs. Gilgamesh convinced him that the trust of an emperor was not something to squander since they had both worked hard to be acknowledged by him. Katabasis did not like the idea of being constrained to one side all the time. Gilgamesh retorted to his guardian that he should either consider taking up Calus' offer or immediately return to the City and wait for orders from an empty chair; citing the Guardians on Europa who harnessed Stasis as an example to seek power. Katabasis ultimately relents as he considered taking up the invitation as his last job before retiring.
Katabasis arrived on the Leviathan and was welcomed by Calus and his Loyalist Legionaries. Katabasis had arrived on the vessel to accept a personal job, he would assist Calus in communicating with the Darkness again after he believed it had abandoned him despite promising to return to him. The Emperor tasked Katabasis to reappropriate the Glykon Volatus, situated on Nessus, from the Red Legion. Calus sent some of his Loyalists alongside Katabasis to assist with this measure, including a Psion named Qinziq and a Centurion named Bahr'Toran. Katabasis and Qinziq entered the ship through a service chute, while Bahr'Toran would disrupt the signal receiver to hide it from the Red Legion until they removed their locational anchor. Katabasis spotted a Psion on the bow, but Qinziq stopped him before he could shoot her. She introduced her as Yirix and explained to Katabasis that Psions are not loyal to just one flag. After that, she dropped from the chute to communicate with her, after which Yirix left her post. The fireteam started the engines of the Glykon Volatus and Bahr'Toran materialised to their location. He said that the charges were set on the signal receiver and the Glykon Volatus was launched into the atmosphere.
After an unknown amount of time, Katabasis and Bahr'Toran began capturing Scorn from the Tangled Shore under Qinziq's directions. He was unaware of the purpose of this, only that he and Bahr'Toran were to capture as many as they can for two days straight. Bahr'Toran believed Calus would use the Darkness to reclaim Torobatl. Katabasis arrived at Qinziq's lab and inquired about the reasoning behind the procurement of Scorn, she elaborated that they had a natural connection to the Darkness which Calus would use a vessel for communing when they arrived at the Anomaly.. After six weeks of capturing Scorn and fending off Hive, Katabasis and the crew anchored the Glykon off the gravity of Phobos, close to the gaping maw where Mars once was. He offered to clear the base of Taken, but realised that they were docile and left them be. Calus arrived on the ship with his scribe, Amsot, and picked out one of the captured for communion with the Darkness. They also brought the Crown of Sorrow aboard the ship, which riled the rest of the cargo hold. Gilgamesh eyed the Crown as it was brought aboard and began whispering strange incantations from there. Calus viewed Katabasis as 'an extra morsel of bait' as he began to commune with the Darkness. The Glykon strains as it moved closer to the Anomaly.
Katabasis began to experience persistent nightmares. He dreamed about the Red War and the Cabal completely decimating the Tower, he fled the city for a long time while they survived alone together. During another attempt at communing with the Darkness, Gilgamesh began to compare the Light in a more negative tone as he became more transfixed on the Crown and the Anomaly. This attempt at communing with the Darkness managed to cross the Glykon into the orbit of Mars and the Glykon was greatly affected as a result. Not only that, Calus had suddenly disappeared from the ship. After drifting endlessly for weeks, Egregore had begun to grow on the interior of the ship, Scorn had infested the ship, and Katabasis was now generally unaware of where Gilgamesh had mostly gone. Qinziq posited that the Crown was the item keeping them within distance of the Anomaly, and Katabasis had dug up an Imperial security key in order to gain access to it. Katabasis was aware at this point that Calus had abandoned the crew on the Glykon. The fireteam managed to make it to the bridge with reanimated Scorn chasing them down the hallway. Katabasis sealed the door where all the Loyalist soldiers were inside alongside Qinziq and Bahr'Toran. Katabasis opens the viewing chamber and Qinziq begins to pull the Glykon backwards outside of the Darkness' reach by communing with the Crown. The metal strains and the Scorn manage to enter the viewing chamber as a result, where Katabasis and the remaining Loyalists fight against the onslaught of Scorn. Two abominations cut through the rank and file soldiers, where Katabasis and Bahr'Toran took on both of them as a last attempt to protect Qinziq. She is engulfed in black flame as she could not hold on anymore. Katabasis knew this is where they would die.
Gilgamesh told Katabasis that 'it took days to find a safe place to bring [him] back' as the Locus of Communion was following them at every chance. Katabasis made an effort to try and bury the Cabal bodies, but he could not manage to bury them all. They generally tried to keep hidden, using the smuggling compartments throughout the ship. Gilgamesh continued to wander off for days at a time and when Katabasis woke, Gilgamesh would not tell him how long it had been since he was asleep. Katabasis' morale had depleted exponentially since the last time Gilgamesh and him had spoke, and he told Gilgamesh to leave him dead until they are both free and rescue had arrived.. Eventually, Katabasis was killed but is subsequently revived while still surrounded by Scorn. Gilgamesh would then confront his Guardian to sever his Light or to be killed and risen over again until Katabasis did so. While the Hunter remains confused, his Ghost revealed his resentment towards Katabasis for turning him away from the Traveler during the Red War and desired a permanent end to both their suffering. Katabasis, realising that Gilly became tempted by the Voice in the Darkness, broke down in his epiphany and furiously shot Gilgamesh with his lever-action rifle.
Sometime later, Katabasis would be found dead by the Guardian investigating a distress call sent from the ship, his corpse strung up by the Egregore fauna on the bridge of the Glykon above the viewing chamber. The Guardian would take up his rifle that he previously offered in his distress signal.
Personality and traits
Little is known of Katabasis' personality before the events aboard the Glykon however what is known is that he was a Loyalist to Calus and was staunchly allied with the Light, refusing to even entertain the prospect of using the Darkness, even if it would save him and his ghost's life. Katabasis was usually incredibly patient with those he trusted and was extremely determined, to the point of naivety, however had an itchy trigger finger whenever his patience ran out.
List of appearances