The Keymaster
rating: +44+x
Keymaster.jpg

Sketch based on the general description of Entity X.

Description:

Entity X, colloquially titled “The Keymaster,” is a being that resides in The Hub, serving as its overseer. He is most known for his ability to provide Level Keys to wanderers, assisting in the escape of levels that they are trapped within. Simultaneously pervasive and obscure, he has been sighted in practically every level of The Backrooms — yet he evades those who attempt to discover more about him.

Over time, The Keymaster’s visual description has varied diversely between reports — primarily regarding the color of his skin, hair, and eyes. These attributes tend to briefly remain consistent for multi-year spans, before becoming slightly altered yet again. Such discrepancies aside, a series of underlying details remain consistent: he is a male humanoid figure with long wiry hair, standing near 6’10" and shrouded in a cloak obscuring everything below the top half of his face. A dark mist of indeterminate properties proceeds his movements at waist-height, briefly remaining in trodden locations before dissipating. The most prominent trademark of his appearance is a large ring of several keys attached to his right hip. The keys appear worn and ancient, but also ornate, with runic symbols inscribed onto them.


Behaviors:

Coinciding with the changes in his appearance, The Keymaster has exhibited a diverse range of behaviors in reported encounters. Generally, however, he is a quiet and soft-spoken individual, often in a state of weariness or confusion.

Despite possessing a need for sleep, The Keymaster is strongly averted to it and will stave it off as long as possible. According to witness reports, upon succumbing to fatigue and losing consciousness, he dematerializes and disappears — later reappearing in a random level. It is speculated that his weariness/confusion are likely narcoleptic symptoms as the result of avoiding sleep.

The Keymaster possesses a neutral demeanor towards wanderers. He never displays hostility without provocation, and will keep to himself if not approached. If a wanderer approaches him and enlists his help in escaping from a level, he is generally willing to provide it. In these interactions, The Keymaster conducts himself with formality, and does not deviate from his goals.

Towards entities, The Keymaster's demeanor is yet again neutral, although slightly more casual compared to his interactions with wanderers. He seems to generally possess enough knowledge to effectively navigate possible interactions with most entities without provoking aggression. Numerous communities of non-hostile entities have often reported a "strange traveler" matching The Keymaster's general description passing through their territory.

Towards any organized group attempting to interact with him, especially for the purpose of learning information, The Keymaster is uncooperative, and will make himself scarce from their presence when possible. Regardless, learning definitive information about him through direct questioning has proven unviable, as he himself does not seem to know the answers to most questions asked of him.


Biology:

By all accounts, The Keymaster cannot be destroyed, or at least can always come back from his destruction. He has been reportedly "destroyed" on several occasions, only to subsequently resurface in another level with a newly reported sighting. Accompanying this subsequent sighting is a change in personality and appearance. There have been no such instances of destruction recorded since 2014.

The Keymaster's most notable trait is his apparent access to every level key in The Backrooms. He will generate a key by materializing it, though it is unknown whether this is accomplished by summoning the keys from a location or creating them at that moment. Given the extent of The Keymaster's accessibility to level keys and the intertwined nature between them, he may possibly be the inventor of level keys.

The level keys themselves typically take the form of a conventional frontrooms key. However, in certain instances, keys are manifested in more abstract forms such as conceptual notions, unpredictable in function. They may also present themselves as other objects or entities. Wanderers who encounter The Keymaster may request a key from him, to help them escape from the level they are on. As per a personal code, he will only allow a wanderer to receive one key ever, and will not manifest another, even if the first key was somehow lost/destroyed. His supposed reasoning behind this is that he "does not wish to take responsibility for more liabilities than necessary". Although the key's resonance will naturally lead the wanderer to its respective door, The Keymaster will nonetheless follow the wanderer, protecting them and ensuring a safe passage along their path.

If an altercation occurs, most commonly with hostile entities, The Keymaster will not hesitate to defend himself, and neutralizes his opponents rather quickly. However, he does not kill them, and instead banishes them elsewhere. With the use of a certain key on his keyring, which appears the most worn, he opens a rift through which he sends his assailants. Where they are brought is not yet determined, though it is speculated to function as a type of prison. The rest of the keys on his keyring most likely serve their own special purposes, though they are yet to be determined.

Given The Keymaster's ability to unlock any level with his keys, it may be presumed that he could lock them as well. This assumption is indeed correct, and The Keymaster will typically lock the entrances to levels upon exiting them, so as to prevent its resident entities from escaping.

An additional ability possessed by The Keymaster, although not particularly noteworthy among the rest, is what seems to be a specialized form of no-clipping that allows him to clip anywhere within a given level at will, although he cannot clip out of a level itself. The only way he seems to be able to intentionally pass through levels is by "physically" unlocking them, except for instances of sleep-induced teleportation (which is randomized and beyond his control).


Discovery:

Gatekeeper1.jpg

Artist's interpretation of "Gatekeeper", as described by The Lost

Entity X was formerly known to The Lost as a deity in their pantheon called “Gatekeeper”, to which many fantastical feats had been ascribed (yet are absent from modern reports). Furthermore, evidence suggests the former existence of prayers, shrines, and other forms of worship dedicated to him. This indicates that not only does his existence far predate modern sightings, but he was also once considered a god and treated as such. Ancient records show that The Lost deeply venerated Gatekeeper, revering him for his apparent ability to "unlock" beings — bringing forth one's true power and potential. Many worshipped him in hopes of having their own capabilities unlocked by him. However, all records of reverence towards him abruptly stopped at a certain point in time, and it is unknown what caused him to no longer be worshiped. Members of The Lost refuse to reveal anymore information beyond this, explaining that he is a "taboo subject" in their culture.

The first modern sighting of The Keymaster took place in The Hub, where he helped guide wanderers to a certain level.


Theories:

There are several theories in regards to Entity X's true nature and origins. Detailed below are the four most prominent ones:

The Wanderer Theory

It is popularly speculated that The Keymaster was once a wanderer himself, before experiencing a certain fate that made him what he currently is. This may be likely, considering the many cases of human wanderers becoming entities after being transformed by other entities, if not a level itself. The explanation would lend to his more relatively humanoid nature and appearance compared to most other entities.

The Cloak theory

This theory postulates that The Keymaster is/was not only one, but in fact multiple individuals.
Those who subscribe to this theory believe that The Keymaster draws his abilities from the cloak he wears, although he himself may not be aware. When he dies, another being finds his cloak — or perhaps the cloak finds them. Upon the cloak attaching to them, they become the new Keymaster, with all the entailed abilities. This may lend to the inconsistencies between recorded interactions.

The Experiment Theory

Another theory is that The Keymaster was created as part of a test/experiment performed by a greater, more powerful entity. This is supported by the fact that his abilities occasionally malfunction. If he were experimental, then there could be room for error and failure, just as with all experiments.

The Deity Theory

Others posit that The Keymaster is simply a force of nature. He always has, is, and will be, and may be tied to the very nature of the Backrooms themselves or even transcend it. This would also account for the supposed immortality.

None of these theories have been confirmed, but each are equally likely to be true.


Do's and Don'ts:

Do:

  • Exhibit a neutral demeanor at minimum towards him. He will not be malicious if others are not to him.
  • Attempt to maintain a safe distance if inexperienced with navigating The Backrooms or interacting with its denizens. Negligence will likely lead to loss of life.

Maybe:

  • Request assistance in exiting the level with a key from him. Generally, he will generate the exact key needed, though discretion is advised as the wrong key or a malicious key may be manifested, and even potentially endanger your life. Carefully choose when to do so, as wanderers may only receive one key ever.

Don't:

  • Display aggressive or hostile behavior. You will likely find yourself where all others who have fought him were sent.

YOU. YES, YOU. COME CLOSER…

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License