The Darkness Within
Episode 12 of The Legend of Vox Machina picks up after Sylas’ death and Delilah’s defeated ritual. As necrosis sets in Keyleth’s body, Vox Machina realizes they need to do something fast.
Is Delilah Briarwood still alive?
Delilah did survive the fight at the ziggurat, but she has no strength left. Percy is ready to kill her anyway. Obviously not himself, he belittles Keyleth’s situation and points his gun at Delilah’s head, ready to shoot at any moment.
Cassandra is equally cold with her, dragging her away when Scanlan points out that they should get away from the spinning black orb that’s been interfering with magic.
Delilah tells Percy to go ahead and kill her. Her ritual failed and she has no hope. But Percy says her pain will be drawn out and tortuous. He puts his mask on and points his pepperbox to Delilah’s mouth.
Scanlan tries to intervene, but Percy shoots a burst of black energy into him, knocking him to the ground. Black smoke curls all around Percy.
Do Vax and Scanlan heal Keyleth?
When the necrosis first started to spread, Vex administered Keyleth an elixir. However, they were too close to the ziggurat’s black sphere for the magic to work.
Everyone moves away from the orb, so Vax asks for another elixir… but there isn’t one. Without Pike to heal her, Vax doesn’t know what to do. He lays down Keyleth to rest, holds her hand, and kisses it. But just then, an idea sparks.
He gathers herbs, just as Keyleth would have done. Scanlan then adds his own magical tunes to assist with Vax’s efforts. Then they wait.
For a long time, it doesn’t seem to be doing anything. But when Percy’s curse is brought up, Keyleth sits up and speaks.
What is the curse of Percy’s pepperbox pistol?
When smoke rises from Percy, thicker than ever before, Vex muses that something is possessing him. “We are better for it,” a voice comes from Percy.
Keyleth says it isn’t Percy speaking, but a demon. And that if it gets what it wants (Percy’s vengeance on Delilah), there may be nothing of Percy left. The subtitles call this demon Orthax, but I believe his name is otherwise never stated.
Vex approaches Percy. “Darling,” she says. “Take off the mask.” The mask drops to show Percy sobbing, his eyes black. He says Orthax won’t allow him any control. He tries to shoot himself just to end the misery, but the demon stops him.
Orthax urges Percy to kill Delilah and his friends, when they step in his way. The demon gives him visions of his family to spur his revenge.
As Percy attacks his friends, Orthax rises from him in his full form, a wolf-like shadow beast. Percy asks him who he is, but Orthax replies that Percy already knows.
Percy’s thirst for vengeance called Orthax to him. When he created his pistol, he made a bargain with the creature. Orthax gives him the power to avenge his family while Percy feeds the demon the souls of his victims.
Does Vox Machina free Percy from the demon?
Cassandra yells at Percy that this is not who he is, that he must fight so that he doesn’t hurt the people he loves. Vex too urges him to remember himself.
But Orthax’s voice clashes with theirs. He tells Percy he knows who he should trust. Percy agrees, and smiles. Then, he shoots his own hand.
Smoke pours out of him and puffs out all around him. Percy is finally himself again.
How does Delilah die?
Delilah laughs at this outcome. She says Percy has shown weakness in not being able to kill her.
Percy is forgiving with her. He knows the pain of losing a loved one, as she lost Sylas. But Delilah isn’t touched.
She says The Whispered One will finish what she started. She starts a speech about how cities will fall and rivers will flow with blood. But before she can finish, Cassandra stabs her in the throat.
She says she’s glad Percy could forgive Delilah–but she could not.
What happens to Percy’s gun?
Percy goes to pick up his pepperbox, convinced that Orthax is no longer living inside. Scanlan is sceptical, however.
The bard kicks the gun into a pool of acid, and the demon can be seen briefly, screaming in defeat.
“Well, I’ll be damned,” says Percy. He thanks Scanlan and everyone else for saving him.
Does Keyleth tell Vax she loves him?
Back at the Sun Tree, everyone recovers from the battle, and the people of Whitestone thank Vox Machina for their service.
Vax approaches Keyleth to tell her that he meant what he said earlier. He does love her. Keyleth smiles and says no one has ever said that to her before. However, she says they can’t be together. Both of them have too many responsibilities.
Keyleth and Vax may not be able to make it work, but it seems that she and Vex are finally on the path to becoming friends. Vex witnesses the interaction between Keyleth and Vax and sighs, disappointed.
Will Percy or Cassandra rule Whitestone?
Ensuing the downfall of the Briarwoods, Percy tells Cassandra that she is the true heir of Whitestone and should take over its rule.
Cassandra worries that their people will see her as a traitor, but Percy comforts her. She can ensure that the city lives forever. She smiles, encouraged.
What happens to the black orb in the ziggurat?
Scanlan asks Yennen for her opinion on the spinning black sphere that resulted from Delilah’s ritual. The holy woman believes it is connected to something beyond the veil.
She sent one of her men to investigate it. As she says this, however, the scene changes to show us the holy man. He reaches out to the orb. As his body decays into a skeleton, he gets sucked into the sphere. Vox Machina is completely unaware.
How does The Legend of Vox Machina Season 1 End?
Keyleth transports Vox Machina through the Sun Tree, back to Emon, where Sovereign Uriel honors them and makes an announcement to the city.
He says his judgment was corrupted by the Briarwoods and, as a result, Tal’Dorei was plagued by evil. This, along with Vox Machina’s success, made him realize that a group is stronger than an individual. So, he cedes the government to the council of Tal’Dorei.
As he wraps up his speech, Vex suddenly doubles over. She experiences a ringing and pain in her head–the same that denotes the presence of dragons. Shortly after, warning bells toll.
The season concludes with four dragons flying toward Emon.
Are the dragons connected to episodes 1 and 2?
They must be. Back in episode two, General Krieg (aka Brimscythe, the Iron Storm) revealed his plan for dragons to rule the entire world.
In a stone wall of Brimscythe’s lair, we briefly caught a glimpse of four draconic eyes, one open and three closed. These likely represent the four dragons we saw in the season finale.
If so, The Legend of Vox Machina has been setting up the major conflict for season 2 ever since episode 1 of this season.
The Episode Review
“Another round for Vox Machina! The greatest band of mercenaries in all the realm!” It turns out that this introduction to the ragtag adventuring party in episode 1 rings true. In the span of just 12 episodes, we’ve seen the unlikely heroes come a long way.
“The Darkness Within” delivers a satisfying and ominous resolution to the revolution of Whitestone while tying the overall season conclusion back to the first two episodes.
The episode ends by showing us changed individuals. With Percy’s newfound freedom, Pike’s new sense of self, Vex’s new respect for Keyleth, Keyleth’s ever-growing power, and the druid’s rejection of Vax–we’re going to see a fresh group dynamic for writers to play with next season.
And–if you recall from episode 1–Vex pledged to hunt down the dragon that killed her mother. This episode may be setting up an important arc for Vex and Vax in the next season.
Not everything wrapped up so tidily, of course. The reason for Keyleth’s miraculous healing was left a bit too vague for my liking. I also wish we could have had a short scene resolving the fight between the people of Whitestone and The Pale Guard.
But the show still managed to resolve quite a lot in this finale, while leaving us much to look forward to. In addition to the threat of the dragons, we may yet see more of Anna Ripley and The Whispered One.
What did you think of the series finale? Let us know in the comments!