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Dark Quickening

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An extreme form of Quickening; largely believed to be only myth.
Duncan Methos Dark

In the grip of a Dark Quickening, Duncan threatens Methos despite being on holy ground

The Dark Quickening, generally disastrous and usually permanent, can change the Immortal in receiving one into a savage, heartless killer. In some cases, the victim might have their entire personality suppressed, and replaced by the compiled darkness of many 'evil' Quickenings. (Se: The Big Finish Audio Highlander The Pain Eater).

Dark Quickenings may be all but impossible to reverse; only two instances where it was achieved can be cited. The first from the comic books, the canonical status of which are questionable, in which Connor MacLeod was alleged to have suffered a Dark Quickening after he took the head of his ancient enemy, The Kurgan. Connor eventually regained his personality, suppressing the violent tendencies of the Kurgan, with the aid of his clansman, Duncan MacLeod. (Highlander: Dark Quickening)

Duncan MacLeod was the second after taking the head of Coltec, himself corrupted by a Dark Quickening, after having taken the head of the evil immortal, Kant in the episode, Something Wicked.

Under the influence of the Dark, Duncan took the head of the unfortunate, Sean Burns, a great and good man. With Methos' help, MacLeod managed to purge the evil within him by performing a ritual of self-cleansing, in which he battled his evil self in the domain of his own mind in the episode, Deliverance.

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