The Most Beautifully Dark Ending I’ve Ever Had to a Campaign

How my Paladin/Warlock betrayed his entire party to revive his brother and ascend to godhood.


I just finished a game of D&D over discord with a group of friends, and let me just say, I’ve never had such a wholesome, wonderful experience. My party consisted of five players. I played a lawful good Paladin. One of the other players was chose a cleric, and his character was my brother. The other three were a barbarian, sorcerer, and a bard.

The campaign started off with some lower level encounters, without a real overarching story to get us a few levels of experience in before we really dove in to the master campaign my wonderful DM had created. After a few sessions, it dawned on me that most of our party was either neutral or lawful good, so I decided to spice things up. After a while, my character slowly started to show slightly darker tendancies, making rude remarks, killing unarmed enemies, etc. Nothing too dark, but enough to raise some concern with the rest of the party. Regardless, I was loyal to my friends and brother through and through (until we went to hell that is).

Once we hit ninth level, we were given our most important quest yet. Thousands of years ago, the Gods had banded together to banish Toramir (Tora-meer), the evil God of chaos and suffering, to an extradimensional plane they had created for that soul purpose. Now, he was escaping, and the Gods determined the only way to keep the material plane safe was to kill Toramir once and for all. We were quested to descend through the layers of hell in order to find a sword forged by the power of all the Gods that could kill him once and for all. And so, downward we descended. During most combat encounters, my brother and I took point while Barbarian would watch our backsides. Fighting through the hoards of demons was surprisingly easy for us. Looking back, I’m sure our DM was attempting to lull us into a false sense of security, and boy did we play right into his hands.

After our first week or so and several game sessions in hell, we were ambushed by a hoard of demonic creatures, the size of which we had never seen before. We only barely escaped, but Cleric had suffered a fatal wound. With some great strength checks, I managed to pull him away from the enemy line of sight. He looked up at me with a smile on his face.

He struggled to speak, coughing in between every few words. “Well bro, I was hoping it would be this way. You and me, together in the heat of battle”. 

Trying to be optimistic, I grabbed his hand. “Look at me okay, this is not how it’ll end. We’ve still got a long journey ahead of us, I need you to be strong for me, ok?”

Looking up at the sky, Cleric spit out his final words. “No… not this time.” His grip loosened in my hand, and his heart stopped beating with one heavy exhale. Sobbing, I tried everything I could to bring him back, knowing full well I was too far from the sight of my god to do anything useful. After a few minutes, his body began to discintigrate in my arms, until there was nothing but ash remaining.

After a short makeshift funeral by the party, we pressed forward. Though my character just wanted to die. He had nothing left but the hope that maybe… somehwere… there was a way to bring back my brother.

Eventually, we descended to the final layer of hell. There we found the sword, and rejoiced as a group. As everyone rested up for our journey back to the surface, I descended deeper into the darkness, until I found what I was looking for, a demon lord.

After long negotiation, he agreed that he would give me his power, and if I became strong enough, I would be able to bring back my brother. All he asked in return was that I send him a certain number of sacrifical human souls every few days. I accepted, and began gaining levels in warlock (unbeknownst to the party). As we returned to the surface, I secretly began absorbing the life force of every enemy I killed, increasing my power and continuing to please my demon patron. The party sensed my shift in alignment, but they were oblivious to what I was becoming the entire time.

After many out-of-game months, we finally were ready to defeat Toramir. Being the paladin, I weilded our HellSword as we entered our final encounter. The battle was brutal, but we eventually triumphed. I struck the final blow, killing the mad god, and consuming all of his life force. At that moment I knew, I was finally ready.

My party watched in terror as I turned around, my skin now incredibly pale, eyes glowing a deep red with blood spattered all across my armor and hands. They could now hear what I had always been able to, the screams of each of my victims, pleading for mercy. All of them stood there silent, they had thought their adventure was over. But they were very wrong. The bard was the first to break the long silence. “Uh… hey there bud, you ok?”

I slightly tilted my head and spoke to them, my voice magically echoing around the room. “My friends, it’s been years we’ve spent together, and in that time I’ve learned a lot about each of you. You have a particularly dogmatic and narrow view on life. You call yourselves heroes, yet you couldnt save the one who may have needed it most. No, now he is beyond saving. I was the only one who tried. The only one… who remembered.”

At this point I was crying, and I could feel the shock of my party in the silence as I continued to speak. “I paid the price… alone. You all left him behind. As if he were just ‘collateral damage’ But he was a human being. And I loved him.”

In a very soft, emotional voice, the sorcerer tried to intergect, “Paladin, I-“

But I did not let her interrupt. “In my time with you, I have evolved. I now understand, life isn’t worth saving. Life isn’t the most precious thing this pathetic world has to offer. That is power. Power can preserve, restore, create that which you love. No price is too great to pay. I will do whatever it takes. I love you all. So much. But I have a new path now.”

Again, Sorcerer spoke. “Paladin please. We can help you. We WANT to help you.”

“No… Not this time.” I said through tears as I lunged at her with HellSword, plunging the fiery blade through her chest. “I’m so… sorry.” I easily cut through the other two, now with the power of the gods on my side. Each one of their bodies turned to ash, exactly as my brother’s did months ago. Finally, silence.

I fell to my knees, mourning the deaths of my friends until the sun rose. By that point everyone on the voice chat was crying. The DM took a long moment to let the emotions sink in, at which point, he closed the campaign. “As the sun rises, you step outside. The sound of the birds greets you, with the slight nip that comes from the early spring mornings in these mountains. As you walk down the stairs, you are met by another figure, who runs up and embraces you. You have your brother back, and you relish in this feeling. Nothing else matters, but actions… have consequences.”

Those words will forever stay with me. Never could I have asked for a better ending to a campaign. Compliments to my DM for shaping an amazing story. Fitting this in as well as his other amazing character development for my party members, that’s real talent. This is by far the most beautiul conclusion to the most amazing adventure ever.



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