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"A man who sees across the boundaries of life and death, a man who lives his life away from others...now thrust into the spotlight and takes the helm on the stage of history."
Page is currently a work-in-progress. Sorry about all the dust.
Sir Ghyslain is a Soulcalibur fan-character created by just another guy on the internet. One of my favorite aspects of cultural lore are how they deal with death and the afterlife. One of my favorite bits of fantasy-medieval fiction are necromancers, the grim dudes that deal with death and the afterlife. These are the guys that stare in the face of death daily, and thrive. Upon Z.W.E.I.'s unveiling, I had to give the style a shot. An acrobatic and stylish arming sword style? A summon of a whatsit to make things more interesting? This was extremely relevant to my interests. I could easily explain away E.I.N. as being a dead spirit, and so the idea of a sword-slinging necromancer who fought rather than just cast spells came swiftly.
Sir Ghyslain is a necromancer (though he prefers to be called other terms) who insists above all else upon being a gentleman despite his gruesome occupation. He works every day to try and figure out the answer to the finer questions of life, death, and the philosophy surrounding them, and normally doesn't interact much with the public. As of late, however, the endless wake of corpses and suffering caused by Soul Edge has definitely come to his attention—a most unnatural form of death, not to mention an absolutely abhorrent presence on this world. While he normally doesn't consider himself one for fighting, in this case he has no choice.
His primary weapon is an arming sword named Maeror, along with the assistance of various spirits he summons, and was created using Z.W.E.I.'s style.
What lies in his soul is Death.
Death is a concept that has been with humanity ever since the beginning of time, and is likely to be with them until the end. There's something about the idea of their existence passing away silently into the aethers that holds such a primal power over men. Even those that believe the afterlife is full of happiness and peace are reluctant to leave this realm.
In some ways, it's understandable. There's plenty to do and have in this life, which not a lot of people are eager to leave. Friends, family, fame, power, love, money, hopes, dreams, justice, injustice, the list goes on and on. The term "something to live for" has never quite been so applicable as it has in the face of death.
In some ways, it's depressing. The lengths some people will go to in order to avoid the clutch of death can be horrifying. Liches that sacrifice entire towns, cults that breach the walls of reality, monsters that dispose of their humanity... In the face of death, people sometimes do desperate things, desperate things they thought they never would have.
In some ways, it's inspiring. The term "death-defying" has become commonplace, but each time carries a reat weight to it. The power that people can pull out in desperate situations, conquering the thought-to-be stalwart and overcoming the thought-to-be impossible, sometimes can only be grasped in the face of death.
It was always perhaps an odd point of fascination for the child of a noble, but ever since his youthful years Sir Ghyslain was fascinated with death. When his friends across the street were afflicted with a disease and their bodies started wasting away, he was enthralled rather than horrified. When his pet fell off a shelf and broke its neck, he was interested rather than depressed. When a girlfriend was called off to war and returned in a coffin, he was serene rather than despondant. From childhood to teen years to young adulthood, he found his thoughts occupied with the morbid.
What was this strange force that all of life eventually succumbed to? What was this mighty concept that everyone, no matter how powerful or how lowly, eventually gave bow to? For a properly motivated young man, it was easy to get his hands on dark and ancient tomes; the more he pored into them the more fascinated he became. Joining a guild of necromancers in order to hone his abilities was the next logical step.
Unlike most necromancers, though, he focused less on the casting of spells, and focused more on the basics—communicating with the dead, deriving power from the dead, and working with the primal force of life. His low-magic approach to necromancy alienated colleagues, and he quickly found himself cast out from the guild and forced to continue studying on his own.
In a way, it worked to his benefit. In not following the traditional schools of necromancy, he was able to explore avenues beyond zombies and reanimation. Instead of studying different spells, he learned to get power from artifacts of death and sites of death or directly from the living. Combine this with a harsh regimen of physical training, to better understand the stress of life and the pain that people can go through, and he came out as a very unorthodox warrior—a necromancer not in robes that hid behind the undead, but clad in a suit and armor, wielding a sword, and carving through with primarily physical power rather than arcane power.
His duties now are simple; keep the living alive, deliver final rites to the dead, provide absolution to the deceased, and help souls pass on to the afterlife. Even now, he constantly studies as to what is to make life worth living, when death is a good thing or a bad thing, and the in-between periods of the endless cycle of life and death.
While his social life in the upper-class ranks has suffered due to his occupation, Sir Ghyslain pays it no heed. After all, now he has an endless aeon of people from all across the ages he can associate with.
Necromancy is so much more than just zombies.
Designed as an executioner's sword, the Maeror is a simple blade that was forged for a simple purpose: killing. It worked its task well for centuries, passed between hands from generation to generation of a kingdom's loyal executioners, all of them delivering swift death in a single blow.
The sword itself hardly seems like anything elaborate: a leather-wrapped hilt with a tarnished gold crucifix grip and an ebon blade, dented and dinged and scratched with age. Hardly anything unique or interesting. Upon closer inspection of the groove in the middle of the blade, however, sharp eyes will notice soft blood-red stains that seem to pulse and throb—the unnamed kingdom has long since fallen and its occupants lost to time, but the blood that the blade shed aeons ago still linger even today on the keen edge.
While it's difficult to say that a non-sentient sword could care about what it does, the Maeror is a blade that truly has no care what victim is underneath it—it has slain mage, warrior, commoner, noble, villain, and hero alike, and over the many centuries it has adapted to be able to more effectively kill each.
Its blade is sharp enough to cleave through even the toughest skin and armor of any trained warrior, and its metal can penetrate through the spells of even the hardiest mage. Whatever falls under the edge is guaranteed to feel the claws of death on their soul.
A Filipino blade designed for carving and cutting through the thick brushes of the jungles, and both the inspiration for and the ancestor of the modern-day machete. It maneuvers through any environment beautifully, and can carve through people just as well.
The mighty katana is a weapon that needs no introduction. One of the most famous weapons of the Middle Ages, and THE weapon of choice throughout feudal Japan, famed for its incredible cutting edge and intricate design.
A Chinese single-edged sword. It is thinner and straighter than the dao, with a design taking inspiration from European swords, but still preserving the dao's incredible strengths with an incredible slashing curve.
Crocea Mors (Ultimate)
Latin for "Yellow Death", Julius Caesar's sword was a sword infamous for its ability to cause death with just a single strike. No matter where someone was cut, they would be guaranteed to die from that wound. Sometimes, however, someone doesn't need to be cut to die from it—when the British prince Nennius acquired it, he ended up dying not fifteen days after.
Wooden Sword (Joke)
It's dangerous to go alone! Take this.
Executioner's Sword (The Ancient)
The Executioner's Sword is, as per the name, a sword designed for executions. It boasts the typical design of an arming sword, a straight and double-edged blade, but has a notable exception of no pointed tip.
- Despite being French, he speaks with a very vague received pronunciation/Queen's English accent.
- Favorite food is soul cake. It's a simple dish designed more for ceremony than actual pleasure, of course, but something about all those flavors just clicks.
- Favorite drink is port wine. Every gentleman is required to have a goblet of wine in their hands. It's a law.
- Can play the piano and organ incredibly well, and is especially fond of baroque music.
- Is incredibly fond of older languages. While he's not entirely fluent and sometimes messes up phrases, he is familiar with Latin, Greek, and Gaelic.
- Despite his insistence on being a gentleman, he is not above flights of mischief and the occasional prank.