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Childhood's End is a Bloodborne fanfic written by pabbeyrene on Archive of Our Own.

The story features an alternate universe in which Eileen the Crow finds Father Gascoigne's daughters, Adele and Laure, before any of them meet the original Player Character hunter. With their Mother and Father missing and Eileen being preoccupied with her job as Hunter of Hunters, she is forced to take the girls to the only person she knows will take care of them; the retired hunter Djura. Unfortunately, the four of them end up being drawn into one of the bloodiest and most dangerous hunts the city will ever know.

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Childhood's End contains examples of:

  • Adult Fear: Not only do two little girls have to survive a night in a city filled with mad hunters, beasts, and other horrors, they also have see their honorary Granddad be killed in front of them by their protectors and find their own father's corpse transformed into one of said beasts.
    • While Djura and Eileen are having an argument about wheter or not to kill a trapped beast that was attacking them, it gets lose and claws Laure, leaving her coughing up blood. Eileen basically has a panic attack as she frantically gives the young girl a dose of healing blood. Thankfully, this manages to heal Laure's injuries.
    • After the skrimish with the Bloody Crow Laure and Adele go missing. We find out in the next chapter that they were abducted by a Snatcher. As in, the kind that bring people to the Unseen Village of Yahar'gul.
  • Bad Moon Rising: The Blood Moon rises in Chapter 7, appropriately titled Witching Hour.
  • Big Bad: The Bloody Crow of Cainhurst is the main physical threat to Eileen and Djura, and is indirectly responsible for them being separated from the girls in Chapter 6. Though he eventually turns out to be a Disc-One Final Boss, being killed in Chapter 9.
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  • Blood-Splattered Innocents: After Adele shoots the beast that attacked Laure, and Eileen kills it, Laure is splattered with both it's blood and her own.
  • Break the Cutie: While this is present throughout the fic, it's most prevalent for the girls during the events at Oedon Tomb. They end up being witness to Eileen and Djura killing Henryk, their Grandad who's gone insane from bloodlust. Shortly after, they also notice their father's body laying nearby. Laure, who's been being the most Cheerful Child she could be in a world like Bloodborne's, breaks the most. While Adele is just in shock and confusion from watching the act, Laure breaks down, screaming at the two for killing Henryk and wanting her dead mother and father. She's so badly shaken afterwards she doesn't talk for the entire next chapter.
    • Adele goes through another in Chapter 7, when she comes to the conclusion that her mother is most likely dead, her Grandad didn't care about them in his last moments, and that no one else in this city is going to help them. Best summed up by this line.
    It was a very lonely frightening thing, to suddenly realize how small and meaningless she was, in a big indifferent world that would keep turning with or without her.
  • Children Forced to Kill: Laure brutally stabs the strange man who was trying to lead them to Odeon Chapel, who turned out to be a beast, to death. Considering all the other horrible things they've seen throughout the night, they aren't actually too bothered by it.
  • Companion Cube: Eileen realizes she's a little too attached to her plague doctor mask and vows to work on becoming more detached to it after the night is over.
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  • Cool Old Guy: Djura.
  • Cool Old Lady: Eileen.
  • Cliffhanger: At the end of Chapter 7, after the group has been attacked by the Bloody Crow, the girls go missing in the chaos and the Blood Moon rises above Yharnam.
  • Crazy Enough to Work: What Djura thinks about the possibility of the group getting the girls out of Yharnam.
    "...He looked over their ragged little band, weary and bedraggled, and thought: to hell with it. We’ve made it this far. Eileen’s going to keep us alive and I’m going to keep us together and the girls are going to despise us for the rest of their days but damn it, they are going to be safe. We are going to pull something precious out of this rotting hulk of a city if it is the last gods-damned thing we do."
  • Creepy Child: They don't act like it in the story itself, but quite a few of the Gascogine's family friends thought of Adele as much stranger and off-putting then Laure. This is most likely a Mythology Gag to her more unhinged behavior in Bloodborne after she is given the bloody ribbon.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Eileen occasionally manages to get some snark in.
    Eileen: *Upon being asked how she escaped a beast ambush* “I flapped my wings and flew."
  • Doomed by Canon: Even though the girls have managed to avoid their in-game fate, their parents didn't. Gascoigne is Killed Offscreen by the player character before the main characters can even meet him, while his wife Viola is all but stated to have died as well.
  • Due to the Dead: Eileen usually does some burial rites on bodies she finds while on the hunt, finding it to be one of the few activities that relaxes her. Unfortunately, the chaos of getting Adele and Laure to safety means she regretfully has to leave the bodies they find behind. Tragically, she's also forced to leave Henryk and Gascoigne's bodies behind without proper burial when Laure's crying screams begin to attract beasts.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: The four main characters, Eileen, Djura, and the Gascoigne sisters.
    • Sanguine: Laure.
    • Choleric: Eileen.
    • Melancholic: Djura.
    • Phlegmatic: Adele.
  • Foreshadowing: In chapter 6, while searching a shop for supplies, Eileen finds a body that has its mouth filled with crow feathers. If anyone's played through Eileen's sidequest, they'll know about The Bloody Crow Of Cainhurst.
  • The Ghost: The Player Character hunter is confirmed to exist and is progressing through Yharnam, doing things such as talking with the Chapel Dweller and killing Father Gascoigne, but hasn't appeared directly.
  • Hope Spot: Early on, Eileen manages to fairly easily get the girls to Old Yharnam and the safety of Djura's tower. She leaves them there and all seems well, with Djura talking with the girls calmly while overlooking the city... until Laure realizes her mother forgot the music box.
    • Chapter 9. Eileen and Djura successfully kill the Bloody Crow and the sisters manage to escape Yhargul relatively unharmed. In the aftermath, however, Eileen goes mad and tries to kill Djura while the sisters are lead away by a stranger.
  • Morality Chain: As the night goes on the girls quickly become this to Djura and especially Eileen. When they go missing, it's not too long before Eileen goes mad. Djura ultimately uses the thought of finding and rescuing them to bring her back.
  • Honorary Uncle: Apparently most of the older hunters were this to the Gascoigne family, including Eileen and Djura.
  • "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: Djura to Eileen in Chapter 10, after she's gone mad and while she is trying to kill him. Shockingly, considering the setting, it works.
  • Oh, Crap!: Eileen gets a rare one when she finds a fresh corpse inside of a store the group is searching through. She doesn't realize why it unnerves her, until she realizes that its mouth is filled with crow feathers. Cue the group getting shot at.
  • The Paragon: Gascoigne was this to the older generation of hunters. Djura describes him and his family as the rock the other hunters clung to, due mainly to the fact he was basically the picture of an ideal hunter with a loving family. Djura is so concerned at the news he's falling the scourge, and that his wife is going after him, that he abandons his post in Old Yharnam to help the girls get the music box to soothe him.
  • Parental Favoritism: Laure was always favored over Adele, mainly due to the younger sibiling getting sick while she was a baby. Adele doesn't mind, and in fact Laure being one of the few to actively talk with her resulted in their close bond.
  • Sanity Slippage: Eileen doesn't take the girls going missing after the Blood Moon well. She runs herself ragged trying to find them and eventually ends up recklessly going after the Bloody Crow in an attempt to find or avenge them.
    • After she and Djura kill the Bloody Crow together, Eileen snaps and tries to kill Djura.
  • To Be Lawful or Good: Eileen ends up having to choose between protecting the girls or doing her job as Hunter of Hunters. She initially chooses to continue doing her job, leaving the girls with Djura, but after they meet again at Oedon Tomb and witness her killing Henryk, she decides the greater priority is getting the girls safely out of the city.
  • Wham Line: After they kill the Bloody Crow, Eileen begins whisper strange things under her breath. When Djura tries to help her out, the following occurs, showing that Eileen has been Driven to Madness.
    Eileen: “Poor Djura. Poor pitiable Djura.”
    She raised her sword and drove it through his side.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: After the group leaves Oedon Tomb, Eileen takes Djura outside of the chapel to call him out on taking the girls back into Central Yharnam.
    Eileen: “You were safe at the tower! All you had to do was stay there until sunrise, instead of – of dragging them out onto the streets – gods’ blood, Djura, what was so bloody difficult about that, that you couldn’t – you couldn’t just –”
    Djura: “They were so frightened. I didn’t – I thought if we just got the music box, that –”
    Eileen: “That you’d prove yourself right? That you’d show all of us wicked hunters that you’d been right all along, that if you give the beasts a sweet lullaby they’ll be gentle as lambs?”
  • Would Hurt a Child: A blood-mad hunter, implied to be the Bloody Crow of Cainhurst, takes a potshot at Djura, Laure, and Adele in Chapter 6.
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