Dustiness Ford Lalatina (ダスティネス・フォード・ララティーナ), usually known as Darkness (ダクネス), is one of the three main female protagonists of the KonoSuba series. She is a crusader with masochist tendencies who joins Kazuma's party early on.
A tall, beautiful young woman, Darkness gives the appearance of a cool beauty. She is well-endowed and also has light blue eyes and straight, long blonde hair, usually kept in a ponytail tied with a braid and red hair clips secured on both sides of her bangs. She is usually seen clad in black, white, and yellow armour, with a metal shoulder plate on her left side, and a wing-like cloth perched upon her right shoulder.
As a crusader, Darkness initially presents herself with an aura of pride and nobility, preaching about her duty to shield others from harm. She speaks in a very serious tone of voice and often comes off as very mature.
Despite these outward appearances, however, it does not take long for Darkness to reveal her true character: that of a complete masochist. While she does want to protect others, her masochistic urges are what ultimately drive her to commit many of her “heroic” acts throughout the series, resulting in many onlookers viewing her as a role model for her supposed selflessness. Her masochism extends to verbal abuse as well, a running gag being how she often responds to Kazuma’s sharp insults with her reeling back in pleasure. Throughout the story, she becomes progressively more open about her true intentions, to the point where she blatantly reveals her reason for becoming a crusader was in hopes of being sexually tortured by the Demon King, and that her ideal husband is an abusive alcoholic who would force her to sell her body for money.
But while she enjoys abuse, there are a few instances where Darkness can become genuinely uncomfortable. Despite her strength and stamina, Darkness’s swordplay is utterly incompetent and she often misses targets directly in front of her, causing her to be embarrassed. One of the only types of humiliation Darkness is not okay with is being made fun of by her real name: Lalatina. Ironically, despite her masochistic urges, Darkness is very uncomfortable with seeing Kazuma naked and screamed when he appeared suddenly in a towel.
Though her masochism is her most prominent trait, Darkness is a very kind and caring individual and can often be seen as the most courageous member of the party, never hesitating to put herself in harm’s way (though most of the time, she has ulterior motives). Being a devout Eris cultist, she has a strong distaste for demons and has pledged herself to protect those around her.
Darkness rarely talks about herself or her background. When she does talk, it is usually about her twisted fantasies. However, we get some subtle hints that she has a high-class background, such as how she conducts herself (when she is not in her masochistic mode) or how her family sent her and her party very expensive snow crabs as a house-warming gift.
It is later learned that she is a high noble, belonging to the prestigious Dustiness family. While Darkness disapproves of abusing her high position, showing her family badge alone will get immediate obedience from most officials and knights. In LN 8, she started to serve as the acting lord of Axel town in her father's stead, after the previous lord mysteriously disappeared, thought to be in hiding from his criminal and corruption charges.
Due to her upbringing and personal interests, Darkness is a subject expert about laws and strong monsters. It is wise to hear what she has to say, but decline any and all quest recommendations she makes, because she only wants to fight insanely strong monsters that may very well wipe out the whole party.
Strength: Darkness has an incredibly high physical strength, being able to fight against several guards without being stopped, as well as easily breaking Beldia's armor when he was almost defeated. She is unable to use it, however, due to the aforementioned horrible accuracy, and as a result, it only mainly serves as a compliment to her durability.
Stamina: Being a crusader, Darkness has a large reservoir of energy and vitality needed to fight in the front lines for an extended period of time.
Durability: As a crusader, Darkness is able to withstand melee attacks, functioning as the traditional "tank" role for the most part. Where this is exacerbated, however, is in how durable she truly is, able to withstand attacks from high level creatures and spells such as the Hydra, a Zombie Dragon, and Megumin's explosion. It is even speculated by Kazuma that she may possess the toughest body in the kingdom.
Swordsmanship: Darkness is able to wield a sword, albeit her horrible accuracy makes it so that she can never land a hit on her target when fighting against enemies. However, when Vanir possessed her, her sword skill increased to the point where she was able to fend off skilled adventurers.
- Decoy: Attracts the attention of monsters.
- Two-Handed Sword: Allows the user to carry a two-handed sword or other heavy weapons.