[ Player Name ] : Samm
[ Personal LJ ]: dreamoftrees
[ Age ] : 21
[ Timezone ] : Pacific
[ Other Characters ] : N/a!
[ Character's Name ] : Duke Pantarei
[ Character's Age] : Mid-late thirties.
[ Series ] : Tales of Vesperia (if a mix of 360 and ps3 isn't allowed, then just 360. I'll bump him to ps3 when I understand more of his interactions with the new characters. )
[ Canon Point ] : Post Tarqaron
[ History ] : From a Wiki! He doesn't have much, but synopsis expands a little more. I'm told it's not a very good synopsis, though, so a compile of what was said in that..
Duke was a noble of Zaphias, one fairly important if by family alone, and used to be a knight. He was at least on friendly terms with Alexei during his travels with Elucifur, because he helped him out on occasion, and Duke was the one who returned Raven's body and Hermes' notes to Alexei. Sometime between that and when 'Schwann' was created, Duke and Elucifur won the war, Elucifur was murdered, and Duke got really angry, resulting in his theft of Dein Nomos.
He spent the ten years after the war up to meeting the party in Deidon Hold wandering the world, conversing with wildlife and Entelexeia ('conversing' is a bad word to use there. 'in the company of' is probably better) and calming Aer Krene as if he was an Entelexeia, of which there are few left.
This Duke has had all of the side-quest meetings with the party (Deidon Hold, Caer Bocram, Dahngrest, Nordopolica, Weasand of Cados, Ehmead Hill, Deidon Hold again, Nor Harbor). He has transformed into Radiant Winged One during the final battle.
[ Personality ] :
At a first glance, the response would be "What personality?"
The man is quiet, reserved, and abrupt with his comings and leavings. He's distant, and cold. Occasionally rather rude; "Those matters exceed your comprehension." isn't something one tells Rita Mordio without receiving a Fireball, but Duke went and did it. He's very socially awkward, occasionally thinking aloud in the middle of "conversations". He keeps his distance even from those who he has talked to many times; rarely asking for any information that is not relevant to the situation. He refers to people as "you", or by descriptors of their person when he cannot simply stare in their direction and be understood that way. He doesn't reply to greetings and decides when the conversation is over, acting upon that by simply turning and leaving without a further word.
Duke is confident and controlled. He carries himself with an air of confidence, one that Yuri picks up on in Keiv Moc; an odd sort of meditative serenity and an almost militaristic way of holding himself. The few times he holds blade in hand, it is always held point to the ground. This relaxed position speaks of his confidence in his skill to react in time to any threat. He never moves at a speed faster than a walk, his hands never leave loose fists from his sides, his expression barely flickers from a faint, blank frown, and his voice never rises. He doesn't swear, verbally or physically lash out, or seem to have a temper at all. Insults, teasing, and sarcasm simply roll right off him, if he even recognizes what they're supposed to be.
"A single life cannot be privileged over the fate of the world"; through his own words, Duke shows himself to be a man of action and the idea of "the many before the one". Unlike others who think that way, his 'one' is always less important than the many; although in Duke's case, the "many" is Terca Lumireis itself. He believes that even he, a human who lives in harmony with nature, might one day cause Terca Lumireis harm, and this showed in his plan for the removal of all humans. He was perfectly willing to kill himself, and every other human, to protect the world. Duke's opinion of himself, other than that he may cause harm to Terca Lumireis, is never stated. He holds himself with confidence, is clearly aware of his strength and power, and attempts to keep himself removed from humans, but remains aware that he is one.
"Words are cheap" The death of Elucifur taught him that words can be said, but that doesn't truly change anything. Elucifur said he would simply watch, and the humans nodded and smiled, then killed him out of fear of the power Elucifur swore he would not use. This doesn't mean that Duke won't keep his word, however, just that anything said to him by a human - any promise made to him by a human - is taken with a good deal of suspicion that it won't be held to. He's a man who removes threats when they become them, does rather than says, and doesn't care about "consequences". Twice, his actions in calming Aer Krene and destroying Hermes Blastia have saved the party, a band of the disliked humans. Had he but waited a little longer in both Keiv Moc and Ghasfarost, the party might have been wiped out, but Duke thought the threat to the planet was not worth waiting longer for removing said threats.
Despite being a man of action, he doesn't take any joy from fighting. Killing isn't something he enjoys, and he won't unless he absolutely has to. However, if he is to fight, and fight at his full capacity, he would prefer to not leave any witnesses to his strength. Knowing exactly how powerful Elucifur is what drove humans into slaying the Entelexeia. It was due to fear, so Duke would rather people underestimated him, and thus avoid a similar fate.
Avoidance is Duke's answer to "fight-or-flight", as he'd rather not get into that situation in the first place. Duke will not intentionally start any conflict, and he will, at first, try to walk away if someone starts one with him. As with his emotions, one has to reach a certain point with him before he'll retaliate, or insult Elucifur or Entelexeia to gain the same reaction.
If someone can get past his shell, they may see him differently. Duke is loyal. If he joins his cause with yours, if your morals/goals match his, if he likes you, you have someone who will stick with you through thick and thin until he witnesses a blatant breach of trust. Duke's trust has been a fragile thing since Elucifur's death, and repairing it for the sake of friendship may be the work of a lifetime. Regaining his trust after breaking it is a feat that stands close to impossible.
Despite his stony, normally emotionless exterior, Duke finds amusement in the subtle humors. He finds ironic words amusing, or at least sounds amused, and may even call the one being ironic out in a way. "So I am the only stubborn one?" was his response to Yuri's commenting on his stubbornness, complete with a rising, almost incredulous tone. However, he has no appreciation for Raven's sort of humor, referring to it as foolishness and clowning.
Despite how jaded he is about what to expect from humans, he manages to be a little naive about the workings inside human society. He understands the chain of command, and some of the workings of the upper-class households, but otherwise very little beyond his pessimistic views of imminent betrayal and inability to learn from the past. Part of this is his odd thought patterns. He melds animal-like behaviors with more human ones, understanding more base, linear thoughts but having trouble with the more convoluted human patterns. He understands killing for food, for imminent threat removal, and for defense, but not for many of the other reasons, such as over Blastia or for resources. Some of his body language is much closer to animalistic than it is to humans – in humans, tilting one's head down is normally a sign of submission while tilting back is more of a haughty stance, and Duke does the opposite. Baring one's throat is a sign of submission, and lowering one's head more aggressive. He is as curious, and as picky about what he'll be curious about, than any cat, and has the single minded tenacity of a terrier. Because of this merge of more animal-like patterns and human patterns, he has a hard time understanding how to deal with people. Mixed with his expectations for betrayal, and ten years removed from society, he's a social mess.
Duke does not like people, simply based on the fact they are human. Still, even after realizing his mistakes, he has a great deal of trouble trusting just any human. Although he finds that the human is friends with one he sort-of trusts, like a member of Brave Vesperia, he will be more likely to attempt to try. If someone manages to get close to him, he might show a bit of 'closeness' in his odd, quiet fashion. Duke has lost someone very important to him, and doesn't like how that felt, nor does he want to experience that again. He'd do everything in his power to prevent losing someone else, even if that means, for the most part, avoiding getting too close to anyone else. While he does ally himself with Khroma and has been working with her since Elucifur's death, she still finds his motives a mystery.
One thing that separates Duke from the heroes is that he knows his limits and doesn't attempt to push them. This isn't the sort of "this project got hard, I give up" sort of quitting one sees in modern settings, but the sort that when he feels that he can do no further, he only spends a short amount of time trying anyway before he scraps that plan and throws himself in a different direction. Raven comments on this when they try to convince him not to steal the life of all humans at Tarqaron. Part of the reason Duke quits so easily is because he expects no help, doesn't trust humans enough to try to get them to aid him, and thus has only a limited amount of back up plans and allies.
Religion on Terca Lumireis is a vague thing. There are mentions of The Goddess, but there are no real church systems, or many more mentions of anything beyond a hell, and someplace better. The Shrine of Baction seems to indicate that humans once worshiped Entelexeia as gods. Neither of these are what Duke follows, and by his own words, "there is no such thing." In reply to Yuri commenting that their repeated meetings were of fate. As a man who has walked more of his world than any other human, has spoken with the Entelexeia and flown with them, Duke does not hold them to be deities. As traveled and learned as he is, he also knows the truth behind tales and legends of the protective powers of Brave Vesperia and the true role of the Child of the Full Moon. He believes in the balance of nature, which should stay as it is, with Entelexeia governing the Aer.
Duke used to be a man whose sole motivation was the protection of Terca Lumireis, his promise to Elucifur. Everything he did was to protect, to preserve, his planet, to keep his promise to Elucifur. He lived for that promise, and nearly willingly died for it. He has little in the way of short term goals beyond survival, no long term goals beyond the next Aer Krene, finding the next abnormality to deal with. Now that the Adephagos, and Aer threats as a whole, have been dealt with, Duke has little to do.
Despite his former occupation as a Knight of the Empire, Duke has no respect for human laws anymore. This does not mean he breaks them to break them, he simply doesn't care that they exist. He still follows some of the basic, common sense ones, laws he refers to as the laws of Terca Lumireis. Flynn accuses him of think himself above the law, and as Duke has cast aside his ties to the Empire, he most definitely doesn't hold himself to their laws.
He is a slightly situational person. It depends on what he is dealing with, who he is dealing with, and what he could gain to aid Terca Lumireis. Perhaps the best description, and probably the one Brave Vesperia would give if anyone asked them to describe him, is that "Duke is Duke". He's contradictory, yet not quite hypocritical.
[ Strengths/Weaknesses ] :
Duke is a powerful swordsman and mage, and all the more powerful in battle due to how well he merges the two. His fighting style involves at least two "skill" spells, constants that he keeps up without expending any of his magic. He employs Levitation, keeping himself above the ground by a half a foot unless knocked down, and only two of his Artes involve him taking blade in hand to attack, something that seems very close to telekinesis. While his magic is not as diverse as Rita, the party mage, all of his spells are of intermediate, advanced, or altered tiers. He also boasts a spell that no other character has, and the ability to cast two of his spells without any incantation – something no one else, even while in Overlimit, does. His speed is moderate while levitating; only a fraction slower than Yuri, however he is capable of bursts of speed so fast he appears to be teleporting, something that is limited to Yuri's Mystic Arte. He never strikes mid-movement when he uses this speed, preferring to evade attacks, or gain an advantage by flanking.
Ten years ago, he was named a Hero for aiding an Entelexeia (Giant intelligent 'monster'), Elucifur, in the defeat of another (who had been leading other Entelexeia in attempting to kill off humans) – and while some might think that Elucifur pulled most of the weight in the fighting, reactions from Raven, who knew Duke at this time, indicate that Duke was nearly equal in strength. Elucifur's daughter, Khroma, who has inherited the feelings of her father, also seemed to believe that even though the party defeated her in combat, they had a chance against Duke. What his fighting style is like without the aid of magic is unknown, however given the statements he makes when initiating Strike Artes and the incantations for his spells, it is likely he would fight to kill. If he cannot achieve that quickly enough, he would strike to cripple first.
Duke is very handy out in the wilderness. He's managed to survive, if not thrive, with little to no purposeful human contact for a decade. While this has negative effects on his ability to deal with and understand humans, it has done wonders for his ability to navigate places that are untouched by man. His tracking and leave-no-tracks abilities are without par, enabling him to remain unfound by the empire after his theft.
Duke is only so mentally flexible. This is odd, considering his talent for creating spells, but when he finds an idea abhorrent, he has trouble seeing the other side of the situation. He is pessimistic, likely to do with the events that have lead him to be as estranged from humans, and his own emotions. Duke sees no point in bloodshed unless he absolutely has to, unwilling to provide aid unless it meets with his goals, and is generally stingy about giving out information he isn't sure it's going to be listened to. He has trouble getting close to people, partially because he has no interest in doing so, and partially due to the fact that everyone he's befriended – which, to be fair, is an onscreen count of two people – has ended up dead. He doesn't understand the thought processes of many humans, struggles to register the variations of tones that indicate sarcasm and can pin basic expressions of happiness, anger, sadness.
Duke has a grudge against humanity that drove him to nearly committing genocide, a distaste for humans so close to hatred that he would rather remove every single one, including himself, than allow them to live, change, and grow for better or worse. He expects humans to be assholes, expects them to betray and hurt those close to them, and thus has no interest in getting closer. Duke and Elucifur won the war for humanity, and while they were recuperating from the battle, humans murdered Elucifur. This went against everything Duke had learned to expect, the honor of knights and how one was supposed to treat allies.
He hates finding himself in a situation where he is useless, whether it is incapable of succeeding in attack or aiding someone, and seeing a friend injured is particularly stressing to him. He has not had many friends, and the last time one was injured, it ended up deadly. While he is no Child of the Full Moon, there is only so much healing one can attempt on a being of Elucifur's size, and Duke's power was not enough to help him.
Duke has been independent, one could say a hermit, for so long that he doesn't expect any aid to be given to him. He believes that his alliance with Entelexeia, and the monsters of Terca Lumireis by extension, and humanities fear and hatred of both, will align them against them, and so doesn't look for any aid. After humans murdered Elucifur after the Entelexeia and Duke had won a war for their existence, his ability to trust them has been shattered.
Part of Duke's avoidant tendancies is the fact that all of
[ Other Important Facts ] :
- Duke can create spells. This is seen with Guilty Resolver, and with the un-named life-stealing formula he created on Tarqaron. Radiant Winged One's Mystic Arte – Brave Vesperia – is another case of this, as it's a combination of all of Brave Vesperia's (sans Flynn and Patty's) Mystic Artes.
- He does have a sense of humor. It's just crushed under his lack of interest in interacting, and his problems getting over Elucifur's death.
- Elucifur and Duke had a strange relationship. When Khroma explains the feelings she directly inherited from her father, it aligns with the description of love. Duke's feelings are estranged enough from him, even then, that he didn't recognize that he felt anything more than a deep friendship. He had something close to returning them wholeheartedly, but remains yet unaware of it. ( In other words, anyone who gets interested in Duke is going to have to deal with a lot of angst as he learns to recognize his feelings. )
- Due to his coloration and his habits while speaking to Brave Vesperia, Duke's sight doesn't appear to be that great, perhaps due to being albino. He doesn't track movement until it gets close to him, and he barely ever looks about.
- Duke is capable of holding conversation with animals. At the very least, he can understand the barks and growls of Repede and form sentences out of them, and monsters seem to like him. Things that don't make sounds won't be understood quite as well, but he is much better at animal body language than he is at human.
[ Sample ] :
He couldn't move. Fighting Brave Vesperia thrice, despite the strength he gained from Tarqaron, despite the strength he gained from the Fell Arms, had not been enough. Duke wasn't quite sure what he should be feeling about that – had he gotten complacent in his power after the Great War? The human who could stand beside Entelexeia in strength, defeated by a band of human warriors and mages. No, he should not be surprised by it – Brave Vesperia had fought and defeated Aer crazed Belius, Gusios, and Khroma, while the last was still fully aware. Three powerful Entelexeia had been subdued when they were crazed, and bested in combat. They had teamwork, trusted each other with their lives and he had fought alone, without aid that he did not control himself. This Guild was of friends and friendships that had been tested and strained and survived, stronger for it. Friendships that rivaled what he had lost with Elucifur, only they were stronger because even if one of them fell, they were all tied together, could support each other. And he was still alone.
He debated catching his breath - no, it would not matter.
"I'm sorry... Elucifur.." Humans would not allow a foe to live. Rather than remain silent, he would speak, give them something to hear before they steadied themselves and perhaps something to remember after they finished him.
"I could not keep.... my promise..." Perhaps he would be able to see Elucifur again, this soon, if there was a place for humans and Entelexeia to go after they passed on. His friend was not reincarnated as a spirit, he could face him again knowing he tried his best to keep the promises he made and had fallen in battle holding to them.
Only they did not. Yuri Lowell spoke to him, stood over him, reminded him, but did not finish him. It.. made no sense. Brave Vesperia turned from him as he lay still, and startled, alive, he regained control of his breathing as they organized themselves and Aer began to flow and change. They did not kill him, an enemy, and they were going through with a change. A selfish change, but one that would allow humans to move forward without damaging Terca Lumireis. Sudden shame burned through him, and keeping his eyes closed and body relaxed he prevented it from showing. They had picked up the promises he had made, without even knowing them; Brave Vesperia's plan was one of all things, cooperating in peace, to protect Terca Lumireis. Had he truly been so blinded by what humans had done, their failures, that he had forgotten what they could do when they put their minds to it? Not just what they could do in rage, in anger, or in revenge, but what they could create, protect. How could he have thought to see Elucifur again when he had twisted his wish so, had sought to defeat, if not end, those who were doing what Duke had promised to do?
Their plan stole the power from their Bodhi Blastia, as Yuri Lowell cried out and aimed the pillar of gathered light. A light that fell short. The youngest of the guild was panicked, the young mage claimed it needed just a little more, the Child of the Full Moon dismayed, the dead man insistent, the Kritya from Temza desperate. They had no more lights from their Bodhi Blastia, Yuri Lowell still crying out as he directed the too short pillar of light. No more light joined them. A dangerous plan, but while it was so, it would work. He had not been part of its creation, but even weary as he was, he could still tell what they were doing. And it truly did need but a little more power to reach. Power they did not have.
But power he had.
"Entelexeia... spirits.... humans.... " He wasn't quite sure if Elucifur could still hear him, if his friend still paid attention to his words after how far he'd gone, but he talked to him all the same, forcing himself to his feet, taking Dein Nomos in hand.
"Elucifur... can this world truly change?" If he had fallen so far, twisted Elucifur's promise so far in his anger and despair, then trying to get back to who he was could be started by aiding those who had made their plan according to a promise they had never heard before today. He was not a part of the spell, but he could see how to join it, understand the formula, how to add power and not disrupt it. He had been wrong, and the pain of his defeat at the hands of Brave Vesperia was barely noticeable under the pain of realizing what he had nearly done. He would fix that. Even if he could not trust the rest of humanity, these humans had done as he once did. They sought answers, they did what they could to protect, they spoke with creatures that were not human, or Kritya – the young Entelexeia trusted them, Phaeroh had trusted them, Khroma had trusted them, and aligned herself with them, because she had seen what he was doing.
It wasn't how he was used to using the blade, but it did not take much energy to direct it into pouring what he had gathered in his startled recovery rather than dispelling. Duke took his first step toward the pillar of light containing Yuri Lowell, the symbols of Dein Nomos' power forming about him. He wasn't sure how the rest of the humans would react to Brave Vesperia's plan when it was done, not simply words, as he knew what barriers did for humans. But ... it was right, to do this, more right than he had been to remove humans from the planet. Whether it was right in any mind but his...
Dein Nomos's power created a similar pillar of light as he bound and twisted the Aer in the way that would fit in with Brave Vesperia's formula, and he decided that these humans, at the very least, he could trust
[ Questions? Comments? Concernts? ]: