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The Speaker was the head of the Consensus within the Last City; He was very old, having lived as far back as the earliest days of the City. He apparently acted as an advisor and mentor to the Guardians, even referring to the Titan Saint-14 as his son.
The Speaker at one time also had an apprentice, Osiris, but in the end they became bitter rivals over their differences in philosophy, and eventually Osiris was exiled from the City. For this reason, the Cult of Osiris does not think favorably of the Speaker.
Establishment of The Last City
The Speaker was born to two self-exiles during the Dark Age and learned he was the last known Speaker, coming into possession of a mask built by another Speaker that allowed them to commune with the Traveler to an extent despite its damaged state. He eventually came to live in a small settlement of three-hundred people in the shadow of a mountain which fell under the tyrannical rule of Warlord Cathal. After six years of his rule, the Iron Lords arrived and drove Cathal away, leaving the settlement independent. Shortly after this, a silver Ghost found the Speaker and began to follow him as it continued its search for a being worthy of being reborn in the Light. One year later, the Speaker and several other leaders of the village met with Lady Efrideet to hear an offer for them to join a growing city being built underneath the Traveler. During the meeting, the Speaker heard the Traveler express its approval of the City and desire to be a beacon calling its "children" home to it. The Speaker trusts Efrideet's assurances of protection and claim that the Warlords are nearly defeated, along with the fact that governance of the city would be decided by all its citizens together, Risen and non-Risen alike. The Speaker and the rest of the settlement leaders agree to move to the Last City.
Before arriving in the City, the Speaker guided a Ghost named Geppetto to the Cosmodrome of Old Russia, where it revived a Exo named Saint-14. Sensing greatness in this newly risen Guardian, the Speaker told him that he would become an example for others to follow and together they journeyed to the Last City. The Speaker established himself as a religious leader and preached about the Traveler and its ways within the growing camp beneath the Traveler. After the destruction of the Iron Lords, the Speaker gained power in the Last City and helped to establish the Vanguard to keep order as factions vied for power. Saint-14 and Osiris became the respective Titan and Warlock Vanguards, and Saint-14 suggested that Tallulah Fairwind should be the Hunter's representative. The Speaker went to Tallulah and explained their plan, but Tallulah was skeptical that the Hunters could or even needed to be organized and asserted they worked best independently. The Speaker noted her efforts at putting together Hunters on other missions across the solar system already, but she countered that there was a difference between independent and solitary. However, the Speaker then suggested that there might be other candidates and that he understood if it would be too much of a challenge for her. With her pride now offended and a dare being offered, Tallulah accepted the Speaker's offer. The inclusion of Osiris as the Warlock Vanguard was controversial due to rumors about his origins and the opposition of the Concordat, who claimed Osiris was the product of a failed Golden Age experiment mistakenly reincarnated into a human by his Ghost, Sagira.
Amongst the first missions that the Speaker assigned Saint-14 was to travel to Mercury with colonists in order to reclaim the garden world for humanity. While the colonists established Zephyr Station, they encountered a race of machines known as the Vex who were terraforming the planet into a machine world while also being followed by the Fallen House of Rain. Caught between these two foes, the colonists were slaughtered while Saint-14 barely survived thanks to the interference of a mysterious Guardian, although he gained a venomous hatred for the Fallen.
Years later, the Speaker declared the position of Hunter Vanguard vacant following the two-year disappearance of the current Vanguard, Kauko Swiftriver. Soon after, the Speaker and Osiris sent Saint-14 after the notorious Fallen mercenary Taniks, the Scarred after his murder of the Hunter Nian Ruo and several other Guardians. Saint-14 failed to find Taniks, although one of Nian's comrades, Cayde-6, succeeded and was believed to have killed Taniks, although the mercenary secretly survived the encounter. The supposed demise of Taniks elevated Andal Brask to the vacant seat of the Hunter Vanguard, as he and Cayde had made the Vanguard Dare over who would kill Taniks, with the loser becoming the new Vanguard.
Disagreement with Osiris
As time went on, the Speaker and Osiris became close, with Osiris becoming the Speaker's apprentice, as the Speaker saw Osiris grow weary of ordering countless missions and dealing with the cryptarchs. The Speaker became increasingly concerned about Osiris' investigations into thanatonautics, Ahamkara-lore, Xûr and The Nine, as well as his questioning about the nature of Ghost reincarnation and the Traveler's motives, which the Speaker believed could disrupt the unity of the City and faith in the Guardians.
Osiris began diverting Vanguard resources in his quest for answers, including launching an expedition to the Reef, and influencing other Guardians to abandon their duties in the City to pursue the same questions, which often led to their deaths. The Speaker decided to act after determining that Osiris had created a cult of personality around himself. After the Battle of the Twilight Gap, the Speaker decided to exile Osiris for his growing obsessions, particularly with the Vex, and misuse of Vanguard resources. At a meeting of the Consensus, the Speaker officially announced the exile and appointed Ikora Rey to take over as Warlock Vanguard and Commander Zavala as Vanguard Commander, with none of the Consensus objecting to his decision. Osiris and his followers, now known as the Cult of Osiris, left the City and disappeared across the solar system. The Speaker sent out Ghosts to gather information on his former apprentice, and those that returned only reported contradictory rumors.
Eventually word reached the Speaker that Osiris had been spotted in the Caloris Basin on Mercury to investigate the Vex. After Saint-14 reported that he had killed Solkis, the Kell of the House of Devils, the Speaker congratulated the Titan before informing him of the situation on Mercury. Concerned that Osiris would provoke the Vex into assailing the City so soon after the war against the Fallen, the Speaker dispatched Saint-14 to stop their former friend.
The Rising Darkness
Investigating the Hive
After a newly risen Guardian discovered the presence of the Hive in the Cosmodrome, the Speaker summoned them and explained his role and some of the history of the conflict between the Traveler and the Darkness. Disturbed by the Hive activity, the Speaker lifted the Lunar Interdiction and sent a Titan to scout the moon. With that scout failing to report back, the Speaker asked the new Guardian to follow his trail and discover what became of him. The Titan and his Ghost were found dead at the gates of a Hive fortress, but the Guardian managed to recover information from the dead Ghost. With this assault, the Speaker knew that the war against the Hive was about the begin once more and began preparing the City for it. The Speaker analyzed the information recovered and learned of The World's Grave, a location within the Hive's catacombs on the moon where they kept a repository of information. He once again dispatched the Guardian to raid the World's Grave and gather whatever information they could about the Hive and their plans for Earth.
The Guardian learned that the Hive were conducting a ritual to reach out and disrupt the Traveler by draining its Light. Armed with this knowledge, the Speaker could now sense the dark ritual being performed on a shard of the Traveler. He ordered the Guardian to return to the moon to stop the Hive before they succeeded in their plot and brought an end to the Last City, and also sent out a high-priority message on all channels stating that halting the ritual was the Vanguard's most important task. The Guardian was successful, freeing the shard of the Traveler from the Hive's corruption, but during the mission they received a mysterious message from a Exo who requested they meet her on Venus. The Speaker thanked the Guardian upon their return to the Tower, noting that the Traveler, while still broken, had regained some of its Light.
The Black Garden
The Guardian learned from the strange Exo that the Black Garden was connected to the Vex and contained a threat to the City which prevented the Traveler from healing. The Guardian would require the aid of the Awoken in the Reef to find and enter the Black Garden. Concerned about the Vex and previous rumors about the Darkness that resided in the heart of the Black Garden, the Speaker allowed the Guardian to pursue this quest. He congratulated the Guardian after they killed the Vex Gate Lord Zydron in order to acquire its eye to access the Black Garden. However he warned them that despite Queen Mara Sov's assistance, she would likely have an agenda of her own and was not to be fully trusted. The Guardian broke into the Cabal's exclusion zone on Mars to discover the location of the gate into the Black Garden. The Speaker thanked them for reopening the Vanguard's access to the Meridian Bay and the lost city of Freehold and its Golden Age secrets, but again cautioned them on the Awoken's tactics.
The Guardians successfully broke into the Black Garden and discovered the Black Heart at the center, guarded by the Sol Progeny. They destroyed it, bringing the Black Garden back into reality on Mars, which enabled Light to return to the Traveler. The Speaker summoned the Guardian back to the Tower, where he hosted a celebration for this great victory over the Darkness. Addressing the Vanguard, dozens of Guardians, and the citizens of the Last City, the Speaker proclaimed that they no longer had to fear and cower before the forces of the Darkness. The Speaker then met privately with the Guardian in his Observatory, noting that he had faith in the Tower, the Vanguard, the City, and in them while the Traveler remained silent. He thanked them for all that they had done for the City and all that they would do in the future. Despite this celebration, the Speaker noted that the Vex's power was not broken and suggested that the Guardian now turn their attention towards the Vault of Glass, as the Progeny were said to have been meant to bring dark powers forth from within it.
After the defeat of Crota by the same Guardian who destroyed the Black Heart, the Speaker was reminded of Osiris' warnings about the Hive god and wondered if his other warnings could be true as well. As he considered the evidence that pointed to his former pupil and his disciples still being alive and active throughout the system, the Speaker sent out a message to Osiris in the hopes that he would hear it and agree to meet. Despite his desire to meet with Osiris, the Speaker was still concerned about his former pupil's teachings and influence within the City. After hearing rumors that Lord Shaxx was a secret follower of Osiris, the Speaker launched a formal investigation into the Crucible handler. Shaxx was outraged by this, and sent a letter to the Speaker denying the accusation and defending his use of Osiris' belief that the minds and bodies of Guardians could be sharpened like one sharpens a sword, declaring that the results in the Crucible as proof enough that the exiled Warlock was correct on that at least.
The Red War
On the anniversary of the Battle of Six Fronts, the Speaker was preparing to give a speech when the Last City was suddenly assaulted by the Cabal's Red Legion. The Tower was the focal point of the Legion's assault, and despite the efforts of Ikora Rey and The Guardian, the Speaker was captured in his quarters and imprisoned aboard Dominus Ghaul's command ship, The Immortal. While the Red Legion worked to complete the Traveler Cage and learn how to extract its Light, Ghaul interrogated the Speaker on the nature of the Traveler's favor and how to gain the Light as the Guardians did.
The Speaker taunted Ghaul and told him to save them both the trouble and kill him, causing Ghaul to note the irony of the Speaker's title due to how little he had to say. He revealed that his men had reported that the Guardian had regained their connection to the Light and demanded to know how that was possible if the Speaker and his people had no power over the Traveler. The Speaker mocked the idea that the Light could be contained as it lived in all things and angrily claimed that the Traveler would protect itself from Ghaul's ambitions.
When Ghaul then claimed he and the Traveler were not so different, the Speaker continued his mocking by declaring they were nothing alike and that Ghaul had begun small and would end small. Angered by the Speaker's defiance, Ghaul grabbed him by the throat and stated that if the Traveler had truly chosen Humanity through free will, then nothing would stop him from taking the Light by force. Refusing to be intimidated, the Speaker informed the leader of the Red Legion that only those chosen could wield the Light. Calming once more, Ghaul revealed that he knew this, and that was why he had spared the Speaker in order to learn how to get it to choose him.
As his captivity continued over several weeks, the Speaker continued to have conversations with Ghaul about the nature of the Light and the Traveler. One day Ghaul questioned what qualities drew the Traveler to Guardians. The Speaker explained that devotion, self-sacrifice, and death were the keys to being a Guardian. Ghaul was intrigued by the Speaker listing death and asked for an explanation. He told Ghaul that devotion inspired bravery, which led to sacrifice and death, and thus sarcastically suggested that Ghaul should try killing himself to claim the Light. Ignoring the Speaker's mocking, Ghaul told him of his history as an outcast raised by The Consul to be an instrument of revenge and how he had risen past his deformities to gain not only glory but control of the Cabal Empire, a goal he had devoted himself to and sacrificed for. Ghaul declared he would not take the Light by force as to do so would be to admit defeat, and he would not be defeated. He asked if the Speaker understood now why he believed he should be chosen, the Speaker claimed to understand, now knowing more about the monster who stood before him. The Consul then entered the room, and the Speaker overheard them exchange words about Ghaul's reluctance to forcibly claim the Light. As Ghaul left, the Speaker and the Consul were left staring at each other, with distaste evident on the Consul's face.
When the Vanguard launched a counterattack to reclaim the Last City and free the Traveler, the Speaker witnesses Ghaul and the Consul argue over their losses, including the sabotage of The Almighty. With the cage complete, the Consul encouraged Ghaul to take the Light by force, but Ghaul ignored him and turned to the Speaker, questioning what more the Traveler wanted of him. The Speaker lies to him that although he claims to speak for the Traveler, he never said that the Traveler actually spoke to him. This lie confuses and angers Ghaul, who turns away from the Speaker, giving the Consul the opportunity to kill the Speaker for his influence over Ghaul. The Speaker's body fell limp to the ground and his mask was crushed beneath the Consul's feet, but Ghaul executed the Consul for his insolence before ultimately being destroyed by the Traveler itself for attempting to steal the Light.
Following Ghaul's defeat, Ghost notes that although the Speaker is gone, he was not the first to hold the title, and may not be the last. During the events of Season of the Worthy the Young Wolf is given access to Zavala's office where the Speaker's cracked mask can be found. This confirms that at some point either the Titan Vanguard or someone else entered the room where he was last seen, though it is never mentioned whether his body was recovered as well.
Personality and traits
Calm, visionary, wise and compassionate were among the best words to describe the Speaker. The Speaker wholly believed in the Traveler as the savior of humanity in its darkest hour and never doubted in its decision to create the Guardians to protect people in its place. For this reason, the Speaker looked to guide Guardians on the right path in protecting the Last City from the forces of the Darkness. He became something of a mentor to some to even a father figure to the Guardians, Saint-14 in particular, whom the Speaker loved like a son.
The Speaker proved his leadership capabilities during his younger years, gathering many survivors and Guardians to lay the foundation of the Last City for the purpose in providing a safe haven for the survivors of the Collapse. As he became the leader of the Consensus, the Speaker pressed for unity amongst the factions and citizens. For this, the Speaker will not stand for any voice or force that seeks to topple the order in the Last City or speak of the Darkness in any way other than a force to defeat. Perhaps the only time he lost his calm demeanor was during his arguments with his former student Osiris. The Speaker resented how Osiris began to question the purpose of the Guardians and more so on the nature of the Traveler. In addition, he was repulsed with the morbid warnings of the Hive spoken by Eris Morn.
There were times when the Speaker would hold a grudge, which he did infamously with Osiris. At first, they were friends as teacher and student but the growing debate on the Light, Darkness and of the Vex threat did their arguments grow more heated and bitter. When Osiris's work began to be distributed through the City as "holy texts" and cause divisions between the Guardians, the Speaker believed that enough was enough. The Speaker denounced Osiris as a heretic, demonized his work and exiled him from the Last City. As a result, the Cult of Osiris do not have a high opinion of the Speaker. However, the Speaker was not above making attempts to make amends as he sent messages to Osiris to speak with him but unfortunately, none reached him.
Though the Speaker is aware that by the time the Guardian rises, times were starting to become bleak and is saddened at the loss of so many Guardians and of the dwindling hope for the system. However, thanks to the Guardian's successes throughout the system did he feel joy at the Last City being at peace and was ever thankful that they had taught him to hope again.
When the Red Legion invaded the Last City and was personally captured and brought before Dominus Ghaul, the Speaker proved himself to be strong-willed and defiant. Even when brutally threatened and tortured by the Dominus, the Speaker remained faithful to the Light and of the hope that the Guardians will prevail. However, his time as a prisoner to Ghaul led to unique interactions, almost as a teacher of sorts, speaking of how the Traveler chose humanity and what it meant to be a Guardian. In time, the Speaker admitted that while he may speak for the Traveler, he never said that it had spoken to him. Nonetheless, his belief in the Light, the Traveler and the Guardians was validated when they succeeded in defeating the Red Legion, destroying Ghaul forever, liberating the Last City and awakening the Traveler.
The Speaker also sells a selection of Rare Ghost shells for 810 Glimmer each. They are set at levels 34, 36, and 38, and are capped at 190 Light. These same Ghost Shells also have a chance to randomly drop as loot, and can have any Light value up to 300.
List of appearances