Lautrec

If we kill one of Sulyvahn’s beasts in Irithyll’s water reservoir, we acquire the Ring of Favor given to those who have received Fina’s affection. This implies that the beast is connected to one of the goddess’ lovers. There is no evidence of any medials in Irithyll besides the royalty, and we only ever learn about one of her sweethearts in the entire series: Lautrec the “Embraced”. Indeed, the knight of Carim aimed for Anor Londo in the original Dark Souls, (DS1) so he would be the most likely to resettle at the abandoned capital among the former residents of the Undead Burg — assuming that the Chosen Undead never slew him for murdering the Fire Keeper of that game’s Firelink Shrine, Anastacia. He might have even gone so far as to serve the city as one of Gwyndolin’s lackeys. After all, Lautrec would have probably reasoned that it was the best to help the gods until Fina inevitably returned home, given that his implied objective in DS1 was finding his beloved in her homeland originally.

Ring of favor of the goddess Fina, whose “fateful beauty” is trumpeted.

The goddess’ favor is fickle like a butterfly, so it increases maximum HP, stamina, and maximum equipment weight.

Indeed, the Japanese descriptions for Lautrec’s armor are basically unchanged between DS1 and Dark Souls III. Their latest iteration only confirm past implication to Fina’s fickle nature and thereby the tragedy of the knight’s love for her. Despite having forsaken everything to be with her, she would never return his embrace or the associated affection. The goddess has already forever fluttered away, fleeting as a butterfly like her ring’s text describes. But with that ring still on his finger, Lautrec yet felt empowered to wait for her, and where better than at Anor Londo? Even if Fina wasn’t there at the moment, Gwyndolin’s continued success would eventually bring her back along with the other gods, at least in theory. In the meantime, he could score points with his beloved by ingratiating himself with the royalty she bowed her head to. It wouldn’t have been the delusional knight’s worst idea, all told.

Armor representing the goddess Fina’s favor. Helmet of the pitiable “Embraced” knight.

It is said that, in his loneliness, he believed in the goddess’ favor, and forsook everything for it.

Armor representing the goddess Fina’s favor. Armor of the pitiable “Embraced” knight.

The goddess’ arms are coiled around on its surface as if embracing the equipper. Contrary to her fickle favor.

In that case, Lautrec has every reason to be in Irithyll when Sulyvahn takes power, his continued presence throughout the ages only highlighting the depths of his single-minded obsession — Fina is presumably dead by this point. Some have posited that the knight was eaten by the Pontiff’s beast, but it is more likely that he was the beast. Killing the enemy adds Lautrec’s armor to the shrine handmaid’s wares, the same as many other slain foes’ belongings. This suggests that the beast is the actual owner of the armor rather than just digesting it. Sulyvahn used the lovestruck fool’s delusions to make him take a black eye on one of Irithyll’s foreign campaigns, perhaps the recent conflict with the chaos demons. Lautrec was convinced that his goddess would one day continue their romance. One must wonder if his faith would remain resolute following his horrid transformation, had he not also succumbed to total madness. Another tragic victim of Fina’s fateful beauty right to the end.