The Last Word
Welcome back guardians. This is part 2 of the story of Thorn and Dredgen Yor. A link to Part 1 is in the description below. This episode will first cover The Last Word and then speculate how this story is connected with Dredgen Yor.
If you have read any of the grimoire cards for The Last Word, you will know that it is self-narrated by an un-named young boy. This young boy is commonly believed to be Shin Malphur. Whilst not 100% confirmed I think most people are happy to accept this speculation due to the flavor text of the Last Word. The flavor text of the Last Word reads
“Yours not mine- Renegade Hunter Shin Malphur to Dredgen Yor during the showdown at Dwindler’s Ridge”.
The specific use of the phrase “Yours not mine”, is an imitation of what the young boy heard Jaren Ward, the previous owner of The Last Word, say during a showdown in town called Palamon. Amongst other evidence this is why the young boy is believe to be Shin Malphur.
I now wanted to begin with a summary of multiple grimoire cards, including the Last Word, Ghost Fragment Last Word and Ghost Fragment Last Word 2.
The story of The Last Word begins in the wilds of a lawless frontier. My understanding of the frontier is that not all of humanity made it to the last Earth City, pockets of survivors had to group together far from the protection of the Traveler and they formed their towns or settlements. Every day was a struggle and they are at the mercy of bandits and raids from the Fallen. One of these towns was called Palamon, and like other towns had to make its own law and its own government. Palamon was overseen by a man named Magistrate Loken. Loken was a hardworking man, but was also broken, like everyone he had suffered losses to the harshness of the frontier, loss of his family and even loss of himself.
Loken’s initial intentions were good, providing law, to a lawless frontier, providing safety and protection to the people from the Fallen, from bandits and even from themselves. Whether it was the power, the fear, or just the sadness, Loken eventually became a cruel and harsh dictator. Some of the citizens left, taking their chances to face the wild.
Others would not leave, despite Loken’s rule it still provided protection from the wild, a sanctuary of sorts. Here we meet the young boy, who we believe is Shin Malphur. As a child, Shin was raised in Palamon and lost his parents to the Fallen, to Dregs. One day Shin Malphur’s life was forever changed when drifter entered the town. This man was Jaren Ward and would later become a father figure to Shin.
A young Shin, was instantly drawn to Jaren Ward, from the moment he saw him, he knew Jaren was dangerous, but yet still had a light about him, a pureness to his weight, something that had been earned not carelessly given. The young boy was even more mesmerized by the iron that hung upon Jaren’s hip. The Last Word. A cannon that looked both pristine and lived in. Like a relic of every battle Jaren had fought, a trophy and a warning.
Whilst waiting for Magistrate Loken to conduct the official greeting for Jaren Ward, without thinking a young Shin, shakes free of his second fathers grip and sprints across the courtyard to Jaren. Jaren sees his fascination with the hand cannon and offers it to the boy to inspect. Shin took the cannon in his hand, carefully, gently, feeling it’s weight and balance. At that moment, Shin did not realize that this was not to be the last time he would hold The Last Word.
So that is a brief summary of the grimoire cards, The Last Word, Ghost Fragment The Last Word, Ghost Fragment The Last Word 2.
I believe at this point some time passes in the story, we do not know how long, however Jaren Ward is still within Palamon. Ghost Fragment The Dark Age 2 grimoire card describes an encounter between Jaren Ward and Loken. We are unaware of exactly what Jaren has done, but I speculate that Loken is threatened by his presence, and Jaren may even be seen as the next leader of Palamon. Regardless, Loken has seen it fit, to trap Jaren Ward in the courtyard with nine guns trained on him. Loken begins to question and taunt Jaren, gesturing to the people who had gathered, show casing his power.
Loken begins to yell “This is our town! My town!”… Jaren responds… “Not anymore”.. Loken laughs “Those gonna be your last words then, boy?”. In a blink, Jaren Ward quick draws the iron from his hip and fires a single shot, speaking as he moved “Yours, not mine”. Magistrate Loken was dead before he even hit the ground, a dark hole visible in his forehead, eyes open, staring endlessly into eternity. The nine guns trained on Jaren, one by one lowered their arm.
The card Ghost Fragment Dark Age 2, ends with the statement from the young Shin,
“And the rest of my life began – where in a few short years, so many others would be ended.”
I assume that this means that after Magistrate Loken was killed, Jaren Ward accepts Shin Malphur as an apprentice and they leave Palamon.
We are not too sure on how much time passes, how long Jaren Ward and Shin stay within Palamon after Loken’s death, or even if they leave immediately, however the general impression I get, is that Shin and Jaren stay within Palamon for a number of years. The reason why I say this, is the next time we see Shin, he no longer is referred to as a child and has some maturity about his character. The grimoire card that I am speaking of is, Ghost Fragment The Last Word 3.
I am going to quickly summarise the facts of this card and then interpret the card.
Jaren Ward is leading a team of 6 people through the frontier, you are unsure of where they are going, however Palamon is behind them, there is also mention that Jaren Ward is tracking someone. Whilst the people he is leading can quote “hold their own in a fight”, they do not appear to be trained guardians or fighters, in fact Jaren refers to them as “Kids”, in addition they are spooked by Fallen activity that flies overhead, definitely not a trait of trained guardian. 3 of the members of the group are gunned down, you are unsure who by, whether it is bandits, Fallen or maybe even Dredgen Yor.
During their travel, the remaining members of the group awake one night to the sound of gunfire. The sound had a familiar ring, the sound of Last Word, Jaren Ward’s sidearm. It was then followed by single shot, an unmistakable echo calling through the night. Then silence. The members did not move, they thought it impossible to track the direction in the dark and so they waited for sunrise. Hours passed. As the sun rose, all remaining members left except for one, who we assume is Shin Malphur. Shin goes in search for Jaren’s body, he does not find Jaren’s body, but finds Jaren’s ghost. The ghost stops a few paces in front of Shin, scans his body and then speaks to him. The card ends.
So now lets interpret more of the card. The card says “when we’d first turned our backs to Palamon’s ash”, this may be a reference to Palamon being destroyed or burnt to the ground. We don’t know why and we don’t know who did it. In addition, it is slightly confusing because the card also references that the group were, quote “all just grasping for any good reason to turn back”, which implies that they had somewhere to go back to. Regardless, a group of 5 people still left Palamon, including Jaren Ward and Shin Malphur. We know there was 5 of them because it says this “Wasn’t known Fallen territory, but anymore that’s a dangerous assumption. There were six of us then. Three less than two moons prior, but still, one more than when we’d first turned our backs to Palamon’s ash.” So, at some stage there were 9 people in the group, 3 died, leaving 6 left, and this was still one more than the number who initially left Palamon, i.e. 5 people left Palamon
So you may speculate that they left Palamon because it was destroyed and maybe they were trying to reach the Traveler for safety, however there may also be an additional reason for their departure.
There is evidence within the card that they left because they were tracking someone, who I believe was Dredgen Yor. The reason why I believe, they were tracking Dredgen Yor, is because of the way the card describes the gunfire between Jaren and whoever he was fighting. Whoever killed Jaren fired a
“single shot, an unmistakable echo calling through the night. Hushed, cutting. One shot, dark and infernal. Followed by silence.”
The reference to dark may be a clue that the gun is Thorn and therefore the wielded Dredgen Yor. Obviously this conclusion is further reinforced by the Ghost Fragments Thorn cards that states the association between “Shin Malphur, Jaren Ward and Dredgen Yor”.
Evidence from the card that supports the theory that the group were tracking someone is quote, “Trail wasn’t cold, but lukewarm would’ve been an exaggeration”, it also says “After such a long road- years on its heels, a trail littered with suffering and fire”. The card also makes reference to a sense of duty, implying that the team was on some sort of mission. Quote
“We held our spot, but as the sun rose the others began to fade back into the world. Without Jaren, there was nothing holding us together. No driving force. Vengeance had grown stale as a motivator. Fear and a longing to see more suns rise drove a wedge between duty and desire.”
This paragraph is quite insightful because it says the group was initially motivated by vengeance, I speculate that maybe Dredgen Yor paid a visit to Palamon and had murdered innocent people within the town, hence an explanation to the saying Palamon’s ash, following this a number of volunteers insisted on accompanying Jaren Ward and Shin Malpur to track Dredgen Yor. These volunteers were not hardened warriors and soon realized that they had made a mistake, the motivation of vengeance soon grew stale and so when provided with the opportunity to flee, they did so. Jaren Ward also knew that the volunteers were no match for Dredgen Yor, hence when they were asleep he snuck off to confront Dredgen Yor by himself.
This is reinforced by a statement from Shin
“He’d gone to face death alone. I couldn’t admit it- not at the time- but he thought he was protecting us”
lso remembering that the group had grown in size since leaving Palamon, at one stage it was at 9 members, so I believe the additional members to the group were just drifters that the team picked up along the way, considering Jaren’s kindness and protective nature, I can imagine if they encountered any unfortunate souls in the frontier they allowed them to join their group and increase their chance of survival in the wild. Obviously the disclaimer to any new members was that they were on a mission to track down Dredgen Yor, don’t worry he is just a notorious killer, but we must do this before returning to Palamon or any other settlement.
If you accept that it is Dredgen Yor who shoots Jaren with a single shot and Shin recognizes the “unmistakable echo”, it implies that Shin has heard the gun fire before, this provides further strength to the theory that Dredgen attacked Palamon, at which stage Shin Malphur heard and witnessed the use of Thorn, allowing him to instantly recognizes the weapon at a later time. I do apologies for staking speculation upon speculation and I do realize that if you disprove just one of the components, the whole story falls apart. However, I do believe this is best explanation that we have so far.
Although we don’t see Jaren’s body we assume he is dead. The first piece of evidence is
“the cadence of the shots fired told a story none of us cared to hear”
this implies that the timing of the shots indicated the Jaren was killed because his gun fired first, and then Thorn was fired, and then there was silence. Then Jaren’s ghost finds Shin and scans him. I assume at that point that Jaren’s ghost left Jaren because he was killed by Thorn and had no more light to be resurrected, Jaren’s ghost then becomes Shin Malphur’s ghost.
Although not specifically said within the cards, Shin must find Jaren’s body or at the very least finds the hand cannon, The Last Word. Evidence that Shin becomes the new owner of The Last Word comes from Ghost Fragment The Last Word and the flavor text of The Last Word. The Ghost Fragment reflects upon a young Shin Malphur and says “That was the first time I held “Last Word,” but, unfortunately, not the last.” The flavor text from the cannon itself says
“yours not mine- Renegard Hunter Shin Malphur to Dredgen Yor during the showdown at Dwindler’s Ridge.”
This implies that Shin found The Last Word, and then used it to enact his revenge upon Dredgen Yor.
That is my interpretation of the Last Word grimorie cards so now we move onto some more heavier speculation, trying to answer the question, who is Dredgen Yor, or more accurately who was Dredgen Yor prior to his corruption? Is there more to this story?
Now I am sure you have heard the speculation that Jaren Ward became Dredgen Yor. It is a pretty complicated theory and I believe it has a number of holes that disproves it. In addition, from what I can see the original post was written prior to the grimoire card Ghost Fragment The Last Word 3 being released, prior to this card, I would agree it was quite possible, however I believe the theory was disproved with the introduction of this card. I have even read more recent justification for how it still could be true but within the last week, I believe some evidence has emerged that well and truly places this theory to rest.
Gameinformer recently released an article on the 24th August 2015 (the link in the description below). It is made very clear that everything in the article has been thoroughly fact checked by Bungie. This article confirms a number of things about Destiny’s overall plot, and yes I am putting together a summary in another video, however it also gives us information about Dredgen Yor. This is exactly as it is written in the article.
“Dredgen Yor, however, is not an awesome guy. Basically, he starts off with a different name that’s been forgotten, but under his lost name he is a mighty guardian that wields a hand cannon called Rose. He’s so intent on fighting back against the Darkness that he becomes utterly corrupted by it, and Rose becomes the much darker weapon called Thorn. He starts murdering other guardians as well as innocents. His old friend, Jaren Ward, hunts him down and duels him with the hand cannon called The Last Word, but Jaren is killed. Subsequently, Jaren’s protégé, a Hunter named Shin Malphur, takes up The Last Word, tracks Dredgen Yor, and they fight. Dredgen Yor is apparently killed.”
There you have it guys, there was no complicated twist at all, all the hints in the Thorn cards, the associations between Dredgen Yor and Jaren Ward, the removal of names from the transcripts was not an insane plot twist from Bungie but unfortunately simply Jaren Ward and Dredgen Yor were friends. I believe they became friends after both participating in the assault to reclaim the moon, the Great Disaster.
So, the question still remains, who is the man behind Dredgen Yor. Now the speculation to answer this question has been provided by you guys, my subscribers, Sir Split- Professional Rude Person, which probably should more accurately be Professional Nice Guy, raised an extremely good point. The Grimoire card for Thorn, depicts a Warlock not a Hunter. Another subscriber, Ghost59able, who consistently leaves well informed comments provided a link to a very good Bungie Post. The result, was some pretty reasonable speculation to who Dredgen Yor really is. I cannot take any credit for thinking of this idea, it was a post by “TheMightyTrikon” on Bungie’s forum (link in the description below), however I have removed portions of the speculation that I do not agree with and added additional evidence to the theory.
Basically it speculates that the noble man that became Dredgen Yor was a warlock named, Pujari. Pujari I believe could be a single guardian that lead a group of Warlocks named the Pujari Position. Or alternatively, the individual may not have been called Pujari, but more that he originated from this group of Warlocks. Regardless, I will refer to him as Pujari for the ease of story telling. Let me provide the evidence for this as per the post and then I will add my own speculation to why Dredgen Yor is a Warlock not a Hunter, and explanation for the Hunter Cloak of Dredgen Yor.
So Pujari was very familiar with the Darkness, the Ghost Fragment: The Darkness says “The Pujari Position describes the Darkness as a force with both physical and moral presence an actualization of evil. Pujari art depicts the Darkness as a great storm, or as a change in conduct, a corruption that emerged from within and poisoned the Golden Age”. You can already see the connection with Thorn, connections with the Darkness within, connections with corruption from within.
Another piece of evidence for Dredgen Yor being Pujari is from the Legend: The Black Garden grimoire card. This card describes Pujari as a Thanatonaught Warlock who kills himself by drowning in the Shores of Time and has a vision of the Black Garden. Quote “I am Pujari. These are the visions I have had of the Black Garden. This is the vision I had when I leapt from the Shores of Time and let myself sink. I walked beneath the blossoms. The Light came from ahead and the shadows of the flowers were words. At the end of the path grew a flower in the shape of a Ghost. I reached out to pluck it and it cut me with a thorn. I bled and the blood was light” The ghost then talks to Pujari and tells him, he is the evil thing, he is a dead thing made by a dead power in the shape of the dead. This creates an uncertainty in Pujari and he begins to feel self-doubt, self-doubt to whether he is on the correct side, to whether the traveler is actually evil. His ghost then brings him back to life, however the thorn-cut in his left hand never heals.
This self-doubt about whether guardians are infact evil is reflected throughout the Thorn cards. In Ghost Fragment Thorn 2, Dredgen kills 3 bandits, the remaining bandit says in fear, “You’re supposed t’be one’a the good ones.” Dredgen says “Supposed to be?” Maybe I am. Maybe this is what “good” looks like.” This is reflective of the thoughts of Pujari question what side he was on. In addition, this card’s flavor text is also called the Bloom, very symbolic to the flowers that were blooming in the Black Garden.
So I speculate, this was the very beginning of Pujari’s corruption and transformation into Dredgen Yor. Following this, he went to the moon as I have said in episode one, and fought at the Great Disaster, where Crota defeated thousands of guardians. At this point, it was a combination of the sadness that Pujari witnessed during the great disaster, his vision of the Black Garden with the scar of self-doubt and at some point an encounter with a Hive Wizard (which I also have previously explained in episode one). A combination of all these factors resulted in Pujari’s transformation to Dredgen Yor.
So the main piece of resistance to this theory, is the item the Cloak of Dredgen Yor, which is a Hunter’s cloak. If this truly was Dredgen’s cloak that would imply he was a Hunter and therefore disprove that he was Pujari the Warlock. So I started to look at the flavor text for Hunter cloaks and the answer can be quite simple. Let me read some descriptions of certain Hunter cloaks.
Cosmic Joke- An infamous cloak, scavenged off the corpses of its owners numerous times on the frontier.
All My Victims Cloak- Made from the torn cloaks of other Hunters. Other, lesser Hunters.
You probably can see where I am going with this, the Cloak of Dredgen Yor does not indicate that Dredgen was a hunter but more simply he killed a Hunter and took the cloak, scavenged the cloak from the Corpse. And who was the most legendary Hunter that Dredgen Yor killed, that’s right, Pahanin. The original owner of this cloak is Pahanin.
After Dredgen killed Pahanin, he took the cloak as a trophy. Presuming that Dredgen Yor was also exiled from the Tower, the cloak was a very handle tool to have in the wilderness. For example the Dustwalker Cloak says “A good survival cape can be used as a hull patch, bandage, tourniquet, pressure seal, picnic blanket..”. So it also seemed very practical for Dredgen Yor to have a cloak in the Frontier. Cloaks, provide camouflage, they conceal your identity so it was perfect item for Dredgen Yor, a perfect item for him to stalk, hunt and murder other guardians, in any case a much better option than a Warlock bond.
Remember guardians, There are some corners of the universe which have bred the most terrible things. Things which act against everything that we believe in. But what can be equally terrifying and destructive are things that are bred within one’s self.
That concludes our two part series on Thorn and The Last Word. As usual, I have a special reward for those who stay to the end of my videos. I have been secretly working on a project with a very talented artist. I working on a way to deliver an excellent lore story by using completely custom, original artwork, presented in a comic book style manner. You will have to wait a little longer until the final product, but here is a sneak peak of the first page. For those who have been following my channel for at least a month, I have left a trail of clues in the comments of previous videos and you may recognize what Lore story this is. I will also have some other announcements when it is released. So stay tuned guardians. This is myelin games, peace!