Destiny 2 Lore: Cayde-6’s tragic past life!

If you have not completed the campaign, this video contains spoilers. Leave now.

Welcome back Guardians… are you ready, I am just going to come out and say it… Cayde-6 has a family. When he was human, he had a son named Ace, and a wife, well we do not know if they were married, however Ace’s mother is mentioned. Stick around if you want to hear more about this story!

Before we start, I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who left comments in the House of Kings video, they were extremely helpful in finding more items to scan and expand upon the lore. I am thinking that this will likely be the process from now on, I will gather as much lore as possible and make a video, however you the community, continue to correct me in the comments, I will be able to revise the video using the collective effort of the community. Thank you for supporting these lore videos when there are so many other exciting topics!

This is myelin games and I hope you enjoy this latest Destiny 2 lore episode.

Whilst exploring the European Dead Zone, I collected a Letter Fragment which belong to Cayde-6. Unfortunately, I cannot remember exactly how I received the Letter, whether it was just a random drop from an event or if I actually received it from Cayde’s treasure stashes using his treasure maps.

Upon receiving the Letter Fragment you can hand it in to Cayde, and he says this,

– so there you have it, Ace, that’s why I did what I did. I had no choice, really. It was that or the great beyond. Just know your dad did what he had to do if I ever wanted to see you and your mother again. You probably won’t recognise me, since I’ll be, well, a robot and all, but I’ll find you, I promise –

– from the journals of Cayde-6

This journal entry confirms that when Cayde was human, before he was a robot, an Exo, he had a son named Ace. This in itself is really cool considering Cayde’s obsession with playing cards, and how playing cards represented important people in his life and his iconic symbol is the Ace of Spades, which you may assume represents his son.

When I made my first lore video on Cayde-6 I speculated that Cayde’s obsession with playing cards was not just from his love for gambling but was Cayde’s way of trying to recover his memory. Each card has significance to him. This is reinforced in the Cayde’s stash mission in Destiny 1 which reads,

“Yeah, I had a whole system to keep track of things, the Royal cards stood for weapons, spades meant hakke, clubs for Crux/lomar, diamonds for Omolon, and hearts, well hearts for this girl I knew.”

Your ghost asks,

“What was her name”

Cayde responds with

“Don’t you have a stealth drive to find”.

As you can see the playing cards acted as a memory prompts, he describes it as a system and Cayde actually hints at this in his journal saying that since becoming an exo his memory has become fragmented and he compares this to a deck of playing cards. His journal reads,

Spend some time with an Exo who’s been through it like we have and you’ll see all the tells.

We got issues.

See, the reboots, they don’t wipe it all away. Not everything. And the new life-plus the Light-it does something real funny to what’s left. Amplifies it, scrambles it, reshuffles the fragments like a dealer riffling a deck of cards, putting the hands we’ve already won and lost back into play.

Most of us do what we can on our own to forget. Let the itch go unscratched.

Me? I learned long ago you gotta play the hand you’re dealt.

So here’s a little bit of what I remember. Strike that. Here’s a little bit of what I know.

It ain’t all right, but I’ll be damned if it ain’t the truth.

As you can see, Cayde is different from other Exos, he actively tries to recover his memories and like he said in the Cayde’s stash mission, his system for remembering things is the playing cards. I think it is superb characterisation to have this comedic character like Cayde, who on the surface is constantly making jokes, making bets and gambling, whilst trying to escape his duties as the Vanguard, yet deep down Cayde has suffered tremendous loss, the loss of his family, the ace of spade logo on his shoulder, is not acknowledgement of his gambling addiction or jovial nature but rather a reminder that he has a family, a reminder to himself to try and remember, to remember his son Ace, a memo he left to himself from his previous life, a reminder to scratch the itch that most Exo’s leave unscratched.

So, the next question is, who is Ace’s mother? Well, there might be some clues in Cayde-6’s journal however first we need to understand the order of events before Cayde became an Exo.

In Cayde’s journal, Cayde describes completing a job for Clovis Bray. Clovis Bray was both a man and a very large corporation during the Golden Age. We don’t quite know what the job was, however other parts of the Journal describe Cayde as a bounty hunter, so it could be like that or like debt collection or security, something like that, a dangerous job. In the journal, Cayde has been hiding out in the hull of a Clovis Bray orbital station for 12 hours waiting for this target to show up, a gun fight breaks out and Cayde damages the hull of this orbital station, belonging to Clovis Bray. Rather than make Cayde pay, Clovis Bray sends him a job offer, saying if he does this thing, his debt will be forgiving and not just for the damage to the orbital station, but all of Cayde’s debt. We don’t really know why Cayde has so much debt but I imagine it is a combination of being very trigger happy and liking gambling.

Cayde accepts the job and it turns out that this job offer involves converted himself from human to an Exo. The journal of Cayde-6 has a picture of a half human and half exo face, presumably cayde and the paragraph reads,

Saturn. No, someplace else. Someplace colder.

This moon has been almost completely converted, a sarcophagus of ice and iron.

Stone towers rung round with glaciers, rooted deep within a heart of snow.

I came here flesh and bone. Gave everything to the ice.

Started over.


SO the events so far are, Cayde is human, he has debt, one part of the debt is from damaging the orbital station of Clovis Bray and then Cayde is converted to an Exo in order to forgive his debt. Following, these events, Cayde then provides security work for Dr. Maya Sundaresh, who is one of the famous researchers who would go on to experiment on the Vex mind. That is the story involving Doctor Shim. Whilst protecting Dr Maya Sundaresh Cayde would go on to fall in love with her. The Journal reads,

And me? I’m there for her. Dr. Maya Sundaresh. She’s poured into the research, on the brink of another breakthrough, focused on devouring every new data point.

Brilliant. Driven. Beautiful.

I can see her so clearly. Dark hair split into smoothed, shimmering strands fanning over her forehead. Gray irises blooming as she looks up from her work to see me standing there beside her.

Realigning . . .

I believe that at the time when Cayde met Maya, he was an Exo because another paragraph says that he stumbles to find his words and his mind rifles through a trillion possibilities, I think the reference to trillion possibilities is indicating that Cayde is a machine. The fact that Cayde is an Exo when he meets Dr. Maya Sundaresh is actually really important to the timeline of the events and trying to work out who Ace’s mother is.

I would really like Maya Sundaresh to be Cayde’s wife, because it makes for an excellent story, Cayde turns into an exo, his memory is fragmented and his wife doesn’t remember him, he says this in the journal,

No She doesn’t know me at all, doesn’t even recognize my face even though I’ve been standing over her shoulder for months.

How tragic it would have been for Cayde to fall in love with his wife again, not knowing it was her and her not recognising him because he is now an Exo. Unfortunately, there are a couple of major flaws in this theory, mostly because Maya Sundaresh is in love with another woman, called Chioma, and her son Ace is literally never mentioned and if cayde suddenly disappeared becoming an Exo with fragmented memories, then no-one would be looking after Ace.

So here is what I think is the most likely series of events. Cayde is in a relationship with a woman, has a child named Ace and at this stage is still human. He is working in a dangerous field of work, which is why in the journal he says, “I promise myself this job is the last. Promise myself this time I mean it.” He takes this job with Clovis Bray, goofs up again and in order to provide for his family and relieve them of their debt, agrees to take this job with clovis bray. Clovis bray takes him off world, converts him to an Exo and his mind becomes all jumbled. In this state, he forgets about his wife and child, falling in love with maya sundaresh. Following that the collapse occurs, which is also described in his journal and the most likely scenario is that both his son Ace and his wife are lost in the collapse, and now Cayde has even fewer recollections because he has been resurrected as a Guardian, and memories of their previous life is very hard to recover.

So with that being explained, have a listen to his journal entry again,

– so there you have it, Ace, that’s why I did what I did. I had no choice, really. It was that or the great beyond. Just know your dad did what he had to do if I ever wanted to see you and your mother again. You probably won’t recognise me, since I’ll be, well, a robot and all, but I’ll find you, I promise –

– from the journals of Cayde-6

This is Cayde’s entry before signing up to Clovis Bray’s experiment and becoming an Exo in order to forgive his debt. Just remember guardian, Cayde’s memory has been fragmented, he may not know of his previous life, he may not remember what the Ace of Spades represents, I will let you decide whether to tell him of his past life.

That concludes this latest destiny lore episode, if you would like to support he channel, leave the word, Ace, to represent Cayde’s lost family! As usual, it has been a pleasure, this is myelin games. Peace.