when i run the dark

to a place that's vast

Negative Energy & The Horned Children

As Ico is put into his coffin by the villagers, they tell him "Please do no be angry with us. This is for the good of the village". The castle is huge, one cannot help but feel there must have been people there once. There are even graveyards as evidence of past life. Towards the end, the black negative energy begins to shoot from the stone sarcophogi holding the remains of the horned children and it is this energy that fuels the Queen.

In the prequel, Shadow of the Colossus, Dormin is a being that controlled the souls of the dead and is a huge shadowy monster. Fragments of Dormin have been locked away into Idols, that must be destroyed. Upon the destruction of all the Idols, Dormin merges with the hero, Wander. At the end, the merged Dormin/Wander are cast into a pool of light, and what is left in the aftermath is a horned baby.

In Ico the Queen controls the wraiths. With this information, the villagers last plea for Ico's forgiveness, and the Idol Doors image of a curled up horned child, one can assume that the wraiths are the angry, afraid, betrayed souls of the poor children who came unknowingly and willing, to face a slow death of starvation once sealed into the stone coffins by adults they should have been able to trust. Considered cursed by the villagers, these children may have even been ostricised during their short lives. Even when being taken away to the castle, the villagers wear long robes and gloves and masks, so as not to see or touch the child.