Season of the Haunted is well underway in Destiny 2, as we head into week five of the trauma-focused story. After the seasonal story is over, we’ll be heading into the Solstice event, as is tradition. But after that? What might season 18 look like? I’ve got one possibility here, based on little more than idle suppositions and wild speculation. Still, wild speculation is fun, so here goes.
Destiny 2 Season 18 — Season of the Fractured
Season of the Haunted wraps up and we’ve resolved everyone’s lingering issues, and in the process weakened Calus and the forces of the Witness. But that Megamind-looking so-and-so isn’t going to take this sitting down. No, he hits back — and hard. The Witness re-opens the previously-closed Vex portal on Europa, swarming the moon with machines. Heading to the surface to shut it down once more, the Guardian works with Ana and Elsie Bray to retake control of the portal. The Brays explain a plan to restore the now-wea
Once they’ve stemmed the Vex assault, Ana and Elsie explain their plans to restore the weakened Rasputin — use the Vex portal to dive into an alternate timeline future and put him into an Exo body. (See “Itinerant Mendicant.”) Zavala and Ikora, both with Lakshmi’s recent and tragic attempts to use Vex technology fresh in mind, are against it, but Zavala is too tired to fight on the matter. The Brays have a third, unexpected ally in their project, too — Eramis, who’s just been frozen and thinking about some stuff this whole time and forms an uneasy partnership with them after she is accidentally freed by rampaging Vex.
Using Elsie and Eramis’s Stasis powers, the group refocuses the portal to target one of the dark futures Elsie has seen and lived through. Over the course of the season, they send several fireteams through in order to acquire information that will help restore Rasputin and rebuild humanity’s defenses against the Witness’s forces. We see what happens to various characters in this timeline — Ikora, Drifter, and many others are dead, Zavala is an embittered old man stripped of the Light, and Mara leads a ragtag band of Awoken, Cabal, and Fallen against Eris Morn’s forces. Though Elsie reminds everyone that this is a future that is already unlikely to come to pass with the defeat of Savathun, learning about their future counterparts begins to demoralize the Vanguard and cast suspicion on Eris and Ana.
In a final effort to stop the Guardians from using the reprogrammed Vex portal, the Witness sends a Pyramid ship to destroy Europa. Rasputin is still not powerful enough to repel it, and it seems as if the moon will be lost to the Darkness. But Zavala, refusing to become the sad figure of the Dark Future, and tired, so tired of all of these battles, launches a Thundercrash so powerful that it consumes him, lancing through the Pyramid and destroying it, proving that they can be destroyed with the Light.
We’re down two Vanguard members. Saint-14 and Crow step up to the Titan and Hunter positions, respectively, Rasputin is back in action, the Vanguard has to figure out what to do with Eramis, and we’re set up for whatever follows.
Is any of this likely? Well, I do think we’re due for a Vex-focused season, as we haven’t had one since last year’s Splicer. And returning to Europa would let us pick up on a number of story threads — Eramis’s uncertain fate, Elsie’s attempts to change the future, and so on. In all honesty, after reading The Dark Future lore I kind of just wished Bungie had made Beyond Light that, but since Destiny 2 has (understandable) trouble wildly altering the world state, heading to a different future in a dungeon or seasonal activity seemed like the next best thing. Also, traveling into the future would have a nice symmetry to it with this season’s focus on the past. Maybe we’d even learn what Elsie’s weird little fish-Ghost is.
As for Zavala dying, well, I previously thought he was going to snap and become a rules-obsessed psycho and I was totally wrong about that. Still, it seems like the character is heading towards something big. The resolution of his Nightmare, rather than galvanize him as it did Crow, merely pushed him further towards wanting to let all of this go. I don’t see Zavala walking away from the Tower, so heroic sacrifice seems the most likely option.
What do you think? What would you like to see in Destiny 2 season 18? Let me know in the comments below.