The shadows, also referred to the shadow realm or the shadow world, is as it sounds. It is a vast dimension where all darkness gathers and protrudes into the physical world. It can be entered and exited by shadow users using different techniques, and it is where they can draw their powers from. Utterly deprived of light, it is pitch black in the shadow realm. Additionally, it is also void of oxygen, creating a perfect setting for an unfortunate victim to suffer, unable to know where they are and receding of air.
Little information is known about the shadows, for it has been rarely explored by non-shadow users due to its hazardous reputation. As described by those who have seen it (as well as survived), it is an endless dark space that hides beneath the absence of light across the earth, not limited to the ground. As long as there is a shadow, whether underwater, inside a closet, or even behind a bookcase, paths to the shadows can be accessed.
The shadows have no true temperature, though it is often felt to have a cool to cold atmosphere. This can depend on the time and temperature of the day in the physical area. For example, one area of the shadow world on a winter night would have drastic differences as compared to another area from a shady coverage on a hot summer day.
As mentioned, the shadows do not carry or support oxygen from the physical world. Should a victim be brought in without a source of oxygen (e.g. air bubbles made by wind users), they will gradually suffocate and die. Many witnesses admit their terror when they experienced the inability to breathe and see anything.
Only shadow demons are capable of opening passageways to the shadows for travel, the term popularly known as "shadewalking". Not all species are knowledgeable of shadewalking, although some species may have the potential to learn it at some point during their lives. Shadewalking is performed either by jumping into a shadow dark and large enough for the individual or manually creating a shadow portal for entrance or exit. At times, the individual may have to thicken the darkness in a dim shadow in order to actually pass through it.
A variation of shadewalking is called "shadehopping", in which the individual is able to jump from one shadow and into another continuously. This technique is known to be used by Bell.
In order to move to a specific destination in the shadows, the shadewalker would typically use their sense of hearing or smell to seek out or identify the area of the physical world through shadows. For example, when looking for prey at a farm, a demon may uses its nose to detect the scent of chickens or hearing to listen for the clucking, then it would find its way into the chicken coop to attack. Some shadow species may find possibilities to shadewalk to higher or lower ground. For example, when trying to break into the kitchen for food during their suspension of privileges, Clearly Lathyrus and London Knight entered the shadows through a garbage bin and exited through a ceiling tile leading into the kitchen.
Non-shadow users can enter the shadows with the assistance of a shadewalker, but their survival for however long they remain the shadows is not guaranteed. Unless they are quickly transported back to the physical world, many would quickly lose air and fall unconscious. A favorite technique among many shadow demons is dragging their prey through the shadows and leading them to where they may consume them (as occurred with Cillian Bradley ). In some cases, shadow demons would leave their victims in the shadow realm to let them suffocate before they are devoured. Although it is not known what happens to the remains of a victim, it is speculated that they deteriorate in the darkness over time.
Shadewalking should not be confused for teleportation or controlling space. A shadow demon may be quick to transport itself from one place to another, but it cannot vanish and reappear instantly in the next second. They also cannot put a limb through a portal and have it transfer out another portal in a different distance.
Known Users and Witnesses
- Bat Kirgiz: Appears to have learnt the technique from his partner Vesper.
- Bell: She is known to have utilized the technique to "shadehop" during chases. Sometimes she accompanies with Gilbert to receive further training on shadewalking from Clearly.
- Clearly Lathyrus: the most well known shadewalker at DAMMED, used extensively in both his human and demon forms. This skill is more fluid in his demon form, however, as he gradually exhausts more energy in his human form. He is often the unoffcial main instructor for shadewalking.
- Dante: He has been seen time to time traveling through the shadows, including the pursuit to prevent Jenner and the others from freeing Gilbert.
- Gisele Delacroix: Bonded to Legba, Gisele is assumed to be a prominate shadow walker and user.
- Gilbert: Formerly a prominent user of the shadows before he was captured. After his bonding with Todd, it appears that his stormy relationship with his human partner rendered his shadewalking ability inactive unless assisted by another shadewalker. He's described traveling through the shadows to be similar to moving through water.
- Legba: Shadow Demon of the Council of the Island. His powers were shown once when he leapt many people through the shadows to the bamboo forest on the island.
- London Knight : As trained by Clearly, he excels very well in shadewalking. Though there seems to be a limit to how long he can breathe in the shadows, he is able to transport himself and even others quickly and effectively.
- Sibbi Caspersan: Though he still currently undergoes training for shadewalking, it seems that he is also fascinated with its concept.
- Vesper Nyx: Yep.
- Yami Yugi: Because the heart of the cards told him to.
- Anelace: Bell transported her and Carter through the shadows to aid Buck.
- Carter Montgomery Buford Follingsworth-Heath Piddledown III: Bell transported he and Anelace through the shadows to aid Buck.
- Cillian Bradley: During the invasion of shadow demons on the base, Cillian was dragged through the shadows by Gilbert, nearly ending up as his meal. He's had a great anxiety for shadow demons ever since.
- Gioele Novikoff: He was dragged to the shadows by Clearly during a sparring match and suffered critical damage from suffocation, poison gas, and cuts on his back. Clearly and his partner received temporary suspension of their living privileges because of the brutal damage.
- Jenner: On a last resort to defeat him on their first sparring match (which resulted in the two suffering from fatal injuries), Clearly found the opportunity to sink Jenner into the shadows in an attempt to relinquish his ability to attack.
- Leon Sylph: He has once requested Clearly to let him look briefly at the shadows. He created an air bubble to sustain oxygen while he observed the shadows.
- Winter Moon: Bat took her into the shadows once.