|“||It's what's beneath the skin and the letters I care about, what burns within. It's more important to me you're a Watcher than whatever culture or accent decorates your letters like awkward crowns. Take pride in your actions, not where you hail from... Or how your name rolls off whatever liar's tongue coats it now.||”|
He can be found in Magran's Fork, at the shrine of Magran in the center of the map. You simply need to talk to him, and unless refused, he will join the party. Player characters who are affiliated with Magran will have additional dialogue options.
Durance is an incredibly ugly man, with bulging red cheeks raked by pox scars, and a scraggly beard. He appears to be in his early 40s and wears the frayed robes of Magran. He wields a unique staff that has a magical flame. Durance is not his name and it is never revealed.
Durance (the original) sought insight from meditation while watching a flame. If that failed, he would seek conflict instead. His teachings were comprised of trials and lessons and his followers were usually not welcomed because they were often hostile to other Magran clergy they viewed as weak. His followers saw this outcast status as a trial and their wandering nature became a sign of "physical devotion".
A point of contention between Durance followers and the rest of the Magranic order was their views on justice. Traditionally, Woedica is the god of justice. However, Durance's followers believed in dispensing "justice" during their wandering trials. They used Woedica's exile as justification that their actions were appropriate for followers of Magran.
Durance was part of a team of twelve priests from Ashfall who worked on the Godhammer Bomb that ended the Saint's War at Halgot Citadel. Each member of the team was awarded a staff made from the Ashfall forest that was blackened during the War of Black Trees.
Aftermath and Purges
At first he headed back to Ashfall, but changed course after deciding to follow the teachings of Durance. He joined the Purges, killing many Eothasians. He recalls this as "saving the Eothasians from themselves. Burning any that didn't die with their god."
- Eothas and his followers, Eothasians, because of Waidwen.
- Hylea and her followers, whom sheltered Eothasians after the Saint's War.
- The nation of Readceras, where Waidwen was from.
- The Aedyr Empire that once ruled the Dyrwood.
- Animancy, ciphers and watchers. All of which he feels contirbuted to Waidwen's Legacy.
In the Watcher, Durance sees a person who can make the barren field of the Dyrwood fertile again and latches on to test them, to ensure that they speak truth, not lies, but the learning goes both ways. Over time he comes to learn that the gods are not unlike the authority ﬁgures he so often ﬁnds himself at odds with, and that he and the killed Magranic clergy were perhaps nothing but pieces in the gods’ games (see endings).
|This character starts quests.|
- Durance is found at Magran's Fork towards the center of the map by a shrine to Magran.
- He can provide support and healing as a priest.
- He also starts with points in mechanics, making him a good companion to tackle locks and traps.
- While not particularly conversational with anyone other than the Watcher, his personality is confrontational and consequently most of his banter is argumentative with other companions.
- Durance keeps secrets that unravel the more you talk to him. He will tire of talking and periodically stops answering until after resting.
- Durance's companion quest is The Trials of Durance, which is received as soon as you recruit him.
- His quest is progressed after resting with him in the party and seeing a vision.
- A second vision will become available after resting with him in the party in Act 3.
- The quest can be completed after Council of Stars in Act 3.
- Using knowledge gleaned from his dialogue, you can try to convince Durance that Magran conspired with Woedica, and that she no longer speaks to Durance not because he did something to offend her, but because the damage to his soul has left Magran blind to his being.
- This has the effect of making Durance realize that the violence and brutality he perpetrated on Eothasians - and, perhaps, the Godhammer - to regain her favor were unnecessary. If he comes to the conclusion that Magran did, in fact, try to kill all the makers of the Godhammer at Halgot Citadel, and he only escaped with the wounds his soul sustained in the blast by sheer luck, he will swear revenge at Magran, promising that he will continue to use and drain her power as long as he needs, until he finally finds a way to strike back at her.
- Failing to convince Durance of this plot results in his belief that Magran's continued silence is condemnation of his existence.
- If he is an active member of the party when finding the burning stone during Cinders of Faith, Durance has extra dialogue in which he refers to the stone as "a whore's cruel jest" and a "divine practical joke." He refuses to explain the joke, as he considers himself the only one who would get it. But potentially, the burning stone can be regarded as a metaphor for Durance himself: another cast-off, broken, remainder of the Godhammer's explosion.
- If he is in the party at Teir Evron during Council of Stars, Durance has extra dialog in which he tries to gets Magran's attention, but she ignores him.
|This character has other interactions.||
- If recruited in the first game, Xoti will see Durance in her dreams as a skeletal priest.
- When speaking with Eld Engrim after the prologue you can refer to Durance.
- If you did convinced him of Magran and Woedica's plot:
- Watcher: "The last Magranite to travel with me almost went mad because of his goddess' trials."
- Engrim: "Aye, but almost mad ain't fully mad. Ah, Old Durance. The goddess shan't forge another like him in our lives, captain."
- If you didn't convinced him of the plot:
- Watcher: "The last Magranite to travel with me wasn't quite up to the goddess' challenge."
- Engrim: "Aye. Poor Durance. May the mad whoreson see better days come the next turn of the Wheel."
- If you did convinced him of Magran and Woedica's plot:
- Magran references her plot with Woedica after leaving Port Maje: "I acted in haste during the Saint's War. You will not goad me into doing the same now."
- Edér references Durance's ramblings during his personal quest The Lighted Path when dealing with the Partisans of the Lighted Path: "You almost wish you could lock 'em in a room with Durance. See how fast they talk their way through the air supply."
Behind the scenes
- Durance was written by Chris Avellone.
- Before PoE 1.03, Durance had the following Attributes: Mig: 14 Con: 15 Dex: 9 Per: 9 Int: 13 Res: 19.
- Durance is voiced by actor Dave B. Mitchell, who is also the narrator.
- A conflict in their past was planned for Durance and the Grieving Mother, and may have been resolved during the story of the Watcher, but that didn't make it into the release version of the game.
- Durance's name in the game files is "companion_GGP". This is also the name used in console commands.
- Pillars of Eternity Collector's Edition Guide, pg. 121
- Durance dialog: "No more than 'Watcher.' And Durance is not a name, it is a title."
- "...this teaching of Durance... well, Durance is not a popular chapter of the faith."
- "Durance would meditate by focusing on a single flame, and attach meaning to it. It was something to center the spirit for what was to come." and "Men fight. Women fight." He chuckles. "Sometimes, even with the same sex. If one isn't fighting, struggling, punishing, then what good are you?" and "Durance did much the same in his travels, it was in defiance, the feeling that there is some other truth that is not found solely in staring into flames."
- "But the teachings of Durance also included casting established clergy out who might need reminders of such devotion as well." and "His teachings are... 'impolitic'... now. It was composed of several trials and lessons, woven together for the sake of faith" and "There is no scripture, no poetry or wordplay open to interpretation. Its disciples are often not welcome, so they walk the road... a physical devotion."
- "As the disciples walked the road, the trials of Durance they suffered - and dispensed - were also ones of justice." and "Durance frowns. "Justice was not seen as our duty. Justice was a thing of Woedica." and "...yet Durance reminded us that Woedica had once been burned by Magran, and rightly so. If a goddess of justice must be burned to remind her of her place... well, then Magran's clergy can remind others in a similar fashion."
- "We fashioned the weapon, drafted plans for it, prayed for guidance at Ashfall, and it came to me there... each of us were given a staff made from the forest of Black Trees around us, glowing with embers and fire far greater than this... branch you see now."
- There is some conflicting dialog about the other priests immediately surviving the blast, but this is from Durance's resolution dialog: "They died in the blast, yes. The other eleven. I was the only one to walk away. I thought... we had wronged our goddess... that this was my trial, and if I could prove myself worthy... Worthy of HER!" and "The weapon was meant to not only burn his flesh, but it would burn his soul. And it did, at the cost of our own, and the cost of our goddess' favor... that whore be damned." and the Watcher's observation: "It looked as if there was only part of you, as if your spirit had been... sheared in half.
- "The connection we once shared with Magran... after the light of the Godhammer, it was not the same. It was as if we had lost our senses... and sense of purpose as well. Instead of victory... being welcomed, there was silence - within and without."
- "I tried to find purpose... and avoided all contact with other Magranic priests, did not seek the walls of Ashfall... and sought to make amends to my god through actions." and "It seemed time to find the teachings I had lost. And to carry out the goddess' will in the Purges... Eothas' faith still remained." and "I punished others, yes. Men, women, children, and I did not spare the staff or any other instrument I felt would learn them and strengthen them. A Purge not just of Eothas, but of frailty. A burning of dry fields."
- "That is why I correct the Hollowborn when I find them. And the ones whose hands have led to this seed being spilled on the ground."
- "She and her clergy offer shelter to the Eothasians since his death, his humiliation. She's next for me."
- "Animancers... Ciphers... all who play games with the fabric of souls are to blame for the barren field they leave behind." and "Durance glares at you. "Even Watchers can do the same. Some simply watch... others try to weave souls, guide them as surely as Waidwen across Evon Dewr."
- "Lot of good that did you when the slaving was at its peak, and you were all footrugs and prone rugs for various shitheeled nobles." Durance sneers. "Those days may come again - after all, you deserved it." and "Too weak to defend yourselves. You were tested, still are, and you're lacking. Orlan, war isn't going to stop to wait for you to catch up."
- The watcher tells Durance: "In the dream of the Godhammer, your spirit looked... blurred, indistinct in the light. As if it had been sheared from you." and "If you had been damaged as I saw in the Godhammer vision, then she may be unable to see you as you once were."