Path of the Dark
The Path of the Dark is, in the words of Bentley Berkeley, a nasty secret society. First encountered by Bentley in the 1920s, it is an ancient order that dates back to Rome. It apparently involves merging with, or being taken over by, Nictus, or being implanted with a Nictus fragment. If a human being merges with or is taken over by a whole Nictus, they become a superpowered being like Arakhn or Requiem. If they are implanted with a Nictus fragment, there are two possible outcomes. If the implantation goes well, they become Galaxy Soldiers. If something goes wrong, they become War Wolves. Merging with a full knowledge and consent is the only way for the merger to be permament, but the Council has developed a way to force Nictus fragments on their troops.
The ultimate goal of the Path of the Dark is complete Nictus domination of Earth. Portal Corporation has discovered an alternate world where the Nictus have succeeded: Lamda Rho 57-20, also known as Werewolf World, which is a world perpetually in night, ruled by the Requiem of that dimension and inhabited by Werewolves.
Unknown: Arakhn and the Nictus arrive on Earth.
Ancient Rome: Imperious, ruler of the land of Cimerora, sends Romulus Augustus (sometimes Agustulus) and a contingent of men to investigate rumors of 'dark ones' in caves below his lands. Only Romulus returned, having joined the Path and slain the rest of Imperious' men. Assisted by the Nictus and the 5th Column, who have travelled back through time, Romulus Augustus proclaims himself Emperor, but is defeated by the members of the Imperious Task Force.
- There is some confusion on the timing of the events in Ancient Rome due to the various story arcs given by different contacts. According to the Imperious Task Force, Romulus turns traitor, claims power, joins with a Nictus and is then defeated. According to Colleen Nelson, Romulus is the last Emperor of the Roman Empire, and is escorted into the halls of the Path of the Dark by a Nictus named Dorjan. His rise to power and/or defeat are not mentioned.
April, 1926: Jennie Bassie, along with her husband Henry, Spencer, Big Six and Miss Akihara track Ridolfo Uzzano and his men into hidden caves under Ravenna, Italy where he is attempting to find creatures of the Path. Ridolfo believes he can talk to their leader, an immortal mad king called 'Emperor Agustulus.' The two groups meet and fighting breaks out. Jennie's diary reports sightings of men, or things like men, dressed as Roman soldiers, and other moving things that avoided her light. Jennie and her group win the fight, and then see the bodies of Uzzano's thugs dragged into the darkness by Uzzano himself, who is screaming as he is surrounded by the darkness.
May, 1926: Requiem, described as a walking shadow in uniform, is unleashed by the Italian government and hunts Jennie and her group.
June, 1926: Requiem attempts to stop the train carrying Jennie and her group as they flee from Italy. He kills Big Six, but all others escape thanks to the 'Nin-jya' arts of Miss Akihara. Jennie realizes that Requiem is Ridolfo Uzzano, who joined with a Nictus named Dirge of Entropy.
Unknown (After Requiem's transformation but at least 70 years ago): Arakhn and Requiem make plans to create a new Nictus homeworld. The plans contain estimations based on several factors: The estimated number of shadow seeds needed to ensure coverage of the region, an estimation of the population who could survive conversion into a Nictus, the rate at which Nictus can arrive through the shadow cysts, and the estimated window during which Earth's defenders would have a chance to stop them, all of which factor in to the estimated time for total Nictus control of the Earth.
Present Day: The Council (and previously the 5th Column) attempts to smuggle a Shadow Seed, the beginnings of a Shadow Cyst Crystal into Paragon City to start a new branch of the Path of the Dark. This will allow them to stop needing to send initiates overseas, and will allow them to flood the streets of Paragon City with bonded War Wolves. Many of the Council who return from their trip overseas have already become War Wolves.
Separately, but also in the present, Requiem and Arakhn attempt a coup against the Council using Galaxy soldiers and War Wolves. When their coup fails, they continue with the plan to bring multiple Shadow Seeds in Paragon City and flood it with Nictus.
In yet another plot in the present, Arakhn and Council scientists loyal to her are working to create a device that can forcibly implant whole Nictus into unwilling subjects. This would allow Arakhn to create multiple creatures like herself that are controlled by Nictus.
Please note that the conclusions reached in this article are based on the facts and clues discovered in-game. If those facts turn out to be false in a later date (as it was Statesman's origins history, for example), all of this is worth nothing.