- "Nothing to lose sleep over."
- ―Graciano during an interview, referring to the collapsed transept
Pastor Salvador Graciano is a minor character in The Evil Within, having been the sinister head of the Cedar Hill Church, a formerly influencial and prominant structure encircling the village on the outskirts of Krimson City territory, one where Juli Kidman would spend a fair portion of her early childhood, and Sebastian Castellanos and Joseph Oda would eventually stumble upon during Chapter 7.
According to the KCPD-filed report, he and several other parishioners disappeared at the church, which was locked up ever since their disappearance.
While much of the information surrounding his origins remain a mystery, it can be estimated that he had already been in a state of power within the community by 1998, when Juli was about the age of nine.
The religion that Cedar Hill Church focused around isn't entirely known, though it is worthy of note that their insignia was seemingly adopted by Theodore Wallace of the Mu Center, who's nature and motives were certainly similar.
From the outside, Graciano's church would appear quite impressionable, and welcoming to all in the community, which centered around the massive structure. Many remained oblivious to the horrific conspiracies that occurred within it's walls, and were easily manipulated by the newspaper articles that the church regularly published, one such victim being the wealthy Ernesto Victoriano, who was possibly embezzled by Graciano's cultists behind his back, later being attributed to financial impropriety by the Krimson Post. With the townfolk under his thumb, Graciano was seemingly free to embark on any sinister pursuit he saw fit, and began performing ritual sacrifices and abductions on unwary villagers outside his ring, oftentimes feeding them to the Sentinel, a feral and highly experimental guard dog kept chained up within the back tunnels of the catacombs. Those who attempted to resist, such as Daniel, a villager who attempted to rescue his daughter from the Sentinel, presumably meeting his demise. Other heinous acts performed include the quarantining and experimenting on deformed twins Neun and Zehn, left on the church's doorstep. A seemingly dead humanoid can be observed in a formaldehyde vat within a laboratory beneath the courtyard, alongside anatomical blueprints of the twins, possibly trying to resimulate the the condition which made them giant. It is possible that he intended to create subservient versions of the two, as they were to hostile to control, let alone care for.
The Pastor's downfall began during a scandal when the floor of the congregation room collapsed during "renovation", and KCPD began an investigation, uncovering the catacombs, where numerous mummies and sepulchers were uncovered by repairmen, which Graciano denied any knowledge of, proceeding to deny them entry, telling them it was "sacrelege". When rumors of scandal got out, the construction foreman, Chris Taylor, mysteriously disappeared, likely abducted by Graciano's men.
The events that directly attributed to his disappearance remain unknown, though it is possible that he and several other parishioners went into hiding. The church was left vacant, and shut down afterwards. Why Pastor Graciano fled the village is unknown, if in fact this is the case; though it would arguably have coincided with the point in time that Ernesto Victoriano was murdered by his son. Having lost his greatest source of income, coupled with the press' growing suspicions, he likely decided he'd squeezed them for everything they'd had.
His legacy certainly lives on among his former followers, the reach of which has continued to spread over a decade later in a religion heavily influenced by his teachings.
The Evil Within Edit
While Salvador makes no direct appearance in The Evil Within, his former church is used as a brief refuge by Sebastian and Joseph, before the two become separated and Sebastian must attempt to escape the catacombs, while continuing to search for Leslie. The Pastor is referred to in a handful of newspapers that appear in the Safe Haven, as well as a missing persons poster. As Sebastian explores the dark underbelly of the ossuary, he comes across a large painting in Graciano's likeness.
Various Haunted nuns and priests who appear to have been churchgoers also appear earlier in the chapter in various places.
The Assignment Edit
As per Sebastian's route, few traces of Graciano are found, though Juli also comes across paintings of him throughout the village. It is possible that Juli knew him as a child, having lived in the same town.
- In his missing persons poster, he appears to have his eyes closed.
- He is only depicted crying blood in The Assignment. This could symbolize the animosity Juli held towards the town's church, and how it was the only thing her parents cared about.
- Another possibility regarding Salvador's disappearance is that he may have been killed by Ruvik. In an audio log in the village market, Ruvik mysteriously retorts to the church that "they promised salvation and eternal life, but there's nothing they could promise that he couldn't take away". His animosity for them began at an early age when his father attempted to force the religion onto him in his childhood, and sprouted into a full-blown hatred after the death of his sister at the hands of the parishioners, supported by the "Two Worlds" note and painting.
- A third potential fate for Salvador could have been at the hands of MOBIUS. Marcelo Jimenez remarks in The Assignment that their research dated back to over a century ago, which would coincide with the laboratory found beneath the courtyard. If this is to be believed, with suspicions growing, MOBIUS may have wanted to quickly divert the public's attention, and tied up a loose end, as they often do when a pawn's use is spent (i.e Sebastian, Ruvik, Jimenez). This is further supported by parishioner Fernando Cabrera last being seen in a cell near Beacon Mental Hospital, as the Pastor was reported missing along with a handful of parishioners. With Cedar Hill Church constantly abducting hapless townsfolk, coupled with their lab, it can be inferred that the Salvador and the church supplied MOBIUS with a steady stream of test subjects, in turn becoming test subjects themselves, just as Dr. Jimenez and the hospital supplied them with a steady steam of test subjects, later becoming subjects themselves. MOBIUS may have just been using Salvador, and Dr. Jimenez may have been little more than a successor in a nearly identical role.
- On May 5, 2008, Krimson Post published an article describing a priest who was found hanging. This was the same week that Fernando Cabrera was found in Beacon Mental Hospital after having been missing for eight years, so it is likely they were each linked to the same investigation. It is possible that the presiding priest was Pastor Graciano.
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