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|“||Against such hardship, I wonder... Will you shine beautifully? ...Or collapse beneath your ugliness?||”|
—Ithere, observing the willpower of another.
|Race|| Dark Lord, Human (former)|
|Age / Birth||1500~ / GL????|
|Ht. / Wt.|| 202cm / 115kg|
|Status|| Demonic Blood Soul|
|Affiliation|| Hornet Faction, Monster Realm|
|Appeared in|| Rance III, Rance 03, Rance IX|
|Mentioned in||Kichikuou Rance, Rance X|
Prior to becoming a Dark Lord, Ithere was a Human man skilled in both the Magic Arts and swordsmanship. Born during the GL Era, a time remembered as one of the most horrific in the history of The Continent, he was among the few humans in possession of the raw power necessary to survive during the period without fear. Deeply disturbed by the unthinkable suffering humanity was subjected to throughout the era, he attempted to stand against the Monster hordes that ruled the world, and maintained a firm will by clinging to the hope that his kind would someday succeed in liberating themselves from their oppressors.
Over time, Ithere's exploits attracted the attention of the Demon King Gele, who, intrigued by his behavior, decided to approach him herself. Confronted directly by the unthinkable power of the Demon King, Ithere was overwhelmed by feelings of weakness and despair, and lost all drive to continue resisting. Rather than kill him immediately, Gele offered to spare Ithere's life in exchange for his eternal servitude as a Dark Lord. Ithere accepted the proposal, now believing with certainty that defeating the Demon King was a futile endeavor.
After becoming a Dark Lord, Ithere was haunted by guilt and self-loathing, resenting the weakness he showed by allowing Gele to shatter his resolve and push him into betraying humanity. To bury his anguish, he began to rationalize that it was simply human nature to break down and submit in the face of certain defeat, and that all people would do as he had when placed in a similar position. Upon reaching this conclusion, Ithere became fixated on testing the willpower of humans, closely evaluating their responses when subjected to great hardship.
While the majority of people Ithere observed seemingly confirmed his beliefs, either surrendering helplessly or relying on others to solve the problem for them, in rare instances an individual would appear who defied his expectations and continued to show unceasing resistance no matter how hopeless their circumstances became. Subconsciously seeing the strength he wished he himself possessed in them, Ithere became captivated by these people and approached them to further test the limits of their inner strength. Using a unique power he acquired after becoming a Dark Lord, he would stare passionately into their eyes and attempt to gain dominance over their spirit, transforming them into his mindless slave if they allowed him to overpower their mental fortitude. Though all who were subjected to this final test eventually failed, steadily losing their determination when pitted against a near-invincible Dark Lord, three women remained steadfast and refused to give in to Ithere much longer than anyone else, moving him even further. As a display of kindness, he offered to make each of these women into his Apostle, claiming that doing so was the only way for them to gain freedom from the monsters. The women, having been subjected to endless suffering at the hands of monsters throughout their lives, were finally cut through by these words, and graciously consented to the offer, forming close and mutually loving bonds with Ithere as his servants.
In an unprecedented turn of events, Gele's seemingly eternal reign as Demon King was finally put to a stop in the year GL1004, when she was betrayed and sealed away in the depths of her castle by the Supreme Dark Lord Gi, her lover and most trusted subordinate, who seized the position of Demon King for himself. Unlike Gele, Gi was largely indifferent toward humans, and put forth no effort to actively bring harm to them as she had. Ithere was not entirely aware of the specifics of Gi's victory, but was nonetheless incredibly impressed by the tenacity and guile he expressed by finding a way to defeat Gele even after seemingly falling under her thrall by becoming a Dark Lord, and loyally served under him without complaint.
In the year GI0420, Gi, at the pressuring of his subordinates, declared war on the Holy Magic Sect, the most powerful and prominent human civilization in existence at the time. Harnessing powerful magic, the Holy Magic Sect constructed Toushin, mechanical warriors of unbelievable power, to fight against the forces of the Monster Realm. During the conflict, known as the Dark Lord War, Ithere encountered one such warrior, Toushin Delta, and engaged it in combat. Ithere attempted to defeat Delta by infiltrating its Toushin Toshi, the floating fortress that housed the components that controlled much of a Toushin's operations, and destroying the mana battery that served as its power source. His attack was intercepted by Delta, who successfully managed to repel him from the fortress before he was able to deliver any significant damage to it. The war was eventually brought to an abrupt end in the year GI0452, when the Holy Magic Sect's leader M.M Rune was betrayed by his closest allies and killed, causing the once mighty nation to crumble in an instant.
In the year GI1015, Gi unexpectedly named Kurusu Miki, a human girl from an Alternate Dimension, as his successor as Demon King, kidnapping her from her home in order to pass on his blood to her. Before Miki was able to fully awaken to the power of the Demon King, however, she was rescued by her boyfriend Ogawa Kentarou, who was able to temporarily stop her transformation through the use of Hirami Lemons. With Gi having allowed himself to be killed by Kentarou and Miki refusing to accept the position of Demon King, the Monster Realm was left without a leader and thrown into a state of civil war. The war was fought between the Supreme Dark Lord Hornet, Gi's daughter who desired to follow through with his wishes and embrace Miki as the new leader of monsterkind, and the Elite Dark Lord Kayblis, who desired to become the Demon King himself and wage war against humanity. Ithere sided with Hornet without hesitation, finding her resolution to fulfill her father's desires even as much of the Monster Realm turned against her to be profoundly admirable and regarding Kayblis, whose deep-seated cowardice prevented him from so much as appearing near the frontlines of the war, with utter disgust.
In the year LP0002, the Dark Lord Noce, who had chosen to ally himself with Hornet, requested her permission to temporarily exit from the war in order to search the Human Realm for Miki, arguing that securing her location was more vital to achieving their goal than defeating the forces of the Kayblis Faction. Hornet agreed with this reasoning, and assigned Ithere, the Dark Lord Satella, and their respective Apostles to accompany him. Ithere was dubious of the arrangement, finding Noce's intentions suspicious due to him having largely been absent throughout the second half of Gi's reign and up to that point putting forth only the bare minimum amount of effort to contribute to the Hornet Faction's war effort, but agreed to take part in it at Hornet's behest.
Soon after entering the Human Realm, Ithere and Satella were informed by Noce that he had located an ancient weapon of tremendous power known as Chaos within the depths of the castle of the Kingdom of Leazas, one of the most powerful human nations that emerged following the collapse of the Holy Magic Sect. Claiming that this weapon would greatly assist them in winning the War of the Factions, Noce revealed that he had already made an arrangement with Patton Helman, the prince of the Helman Republic, a rival nation, to assist in invading Leazas with the intention of taking advantage of the ensuing confusion to search the depths of Leazas Castle to acquire it. Both Ithere and Satella disliked the idea of acting outside of Hornet's knowledge, with Ithere in particular believing that Hornet would not agree with needlessly harming humans for the sake of their mission, but were eventually forced to relent due to the authority Noce, a former Elite Dark Lord, held over them.
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During the events of Rance 03, the three Dark Lords put Noce's plan into action by covertly placing a transportation circle within the basement of Leazas Castle and sending themselves, along with the soldiers of the Helman 3rd Army, through it during the night; beginning a conflict that would come to be known as the 7th Leazas-Helman War. The Leazas Army was ill-prepared from an attack launched so suddenly from within the walls of its own castle, with only the forces of the Royal Guard being present to immediately mobilize against it. Ithere played an active role in assisting the Helman Army capture the castle, wandering its halls and using his mind control power to brainwash the members of the Royal Guard he came across into fighting alongside him.
While capturing the castle, Ithere encountered Kentou Kanami, the personal Ninja of princess Lia Parapara Leazas, and Leila Grecni, the captain of the Royal Guard, attempting to evacuate. The two made an effort to face him, only to find themselves completely incapable of penetrating the Invincibility Field that protects all Dark Lords from conventional damage. Desperate to ensure that Kanami would successfully escape, Leila nonetheless held her ground against Ithere, a display of courage and resilience that he found exceptionally impressive. While Leila narrowly managed to stubbornly resist Ithere's influence as they clashed swords, he eventually succeeded in disarming her and took advantage of her ensuing drop in focus to take control of her mind. With the Royal Guard captain now on their side, the Helman Army was quickly able to lay claim to Leazas Castle and imprison Lia and her advisor Maris Amaryllis.Soon after Leazas Castle had fallen, Noce informed his associates that the room that Chaos was located in was magically sealed, and required someone of the Leazas royal bloodline and the three pieces of the Leazas Holy Armor to gain access to. Satella and Ithere tried to read Lia’s mind to uncover the location of the equipment, but found that a magical charm had been placed on her memories that prevented them from accessing them. They then attempted to interrogate her for the whereabouts of the armor, only for her to refuse to divulge anything other than that she had entrusted it to Rance, a warrior from the Free Cities Alliance who she described with the vague adjectives of “strong and cool”. With their options exhausted, Noce ordered Satella to search the Free Cities for Rance while he remained near Patton’s side to keep themselves beneath suspicion. To prolong the confusion of war, he had Ithere continue to work alongside the Helman Army, which was preparing to exit the castle and begin a campaign to take the rest of Leazas’ territory.
With the Leazas Army surrounding the castle from all directions, Ithere divided himself and his three Apostles into two teams: sending his Apostles Garnet and Topaz to combat Leazas' Blue and White armies to the north while he and his Apostle Sapphire took on the Black and Red armies to the south. To his disgust, Fletcher Modell and Henderson Dauntless, the commanding officers of the division of the Helman Army he was made to accompany, showed little interest in fighting against Leazas themselves, and instead asked him to brainwash the enemy armies as he had the Royal Guard. Ithere reluctantly gave in to their demand and had Sapphire use her unique ability to control the minds of large masses of people at once to gain control of both the Black and Red armies, allowing Helman to capture all of the Leazas' southern cities while doing nearly nothing.
Shortly after it had taken Leazas' southern territories, Fletcher and Henderson's units received a command from Patton, who had expanded the scope of his plans to conquering the entire Human Realm, to begin moving into the Free Cities. Reinforced by the corrupted Leazas Army, the two units subjugated the Free Cities of The O, Red, and L’Zile with little difficulty, only to meet surprising opposition upon reaching the city of Kathtom. Led by the Four Witches of Kathtom, four exceptional young women with outstanding talent in various fields, and supported by various adventurers from throughout the Free Cities, the Kathtom Defense Force put forth a strong resistance that allowed it to momentarily halt the Helman Army’s advance. Ithere’s distaste for Fletcher and Henderson was further aggravated by their inability to defeat the newfound enemy despite having vastly superior numbers, causing him to refuse to continue taking part in the proceedings. Entrusting Sapphire to oversee the remainder of the campaign in his place, he returned to Leazas Castle to report his progress to Noce, leaving the mind-controlled Leila by her side to act as a bodyguard.
A few days later, Ithere was greeted at Leazas Castle by a dejected Sapphire, who informed him that a man had infiltrated the Helman Army’s base in L’Zile and broken her concentration for long enough to free the Leazas Black and Red armies from her control, allowing them to merge with the Kathom Defense Force and retake the city with their combined forces. Rather than be upset by this news, Ithere was enormously pleased by the actions of the newly-emerged enemy, now titled the Leazas Liberation Army, and showed fascination at its ability to hold firm and take a stand against seemingly impossible odds, and chose to return to the Helman Army’s base in Red to observe it for himself.
Soon after Ithere’s arrival, the Liberation Army started to march toward Red, where the Helman Army’s forces confronted it in a defensive battle. Despite its bolstered numbers, the Liberation Army was still outnumbered three-to-one by the enemy and quickly forced to retreat. Rather than attempt to pursue the Liberation Army into L’Zile, Fletcher, the commander presiding over the occupation of Red, chose to remain stationed in the city, believing that the combination of its fortified walls and his superior numbers put him at little risk of being defeated. Ithere found Fletcher’s cautious and conservative decision-making to be unsightly, but abstained from raising any criticisms due to his curiosity over how the Liberation Army would prepare a counterattack.Sometime after the failed first attack, Fletcher received a report confirming that the Liberation Army had once again mobilized in the direction of Red, boasting the same numbers as it had when it had previously retreated. Taking this as a sign that it hadn’t learned from its previous loss, Fletcher called for his troops to position themselves outside of the city, intending to minimize the risk of damage caused by the Tulip, a high-powered handheld cannon the Liberation had used in the encounter that he believed to be the most powerful weapon at its disposal. In a shocking turn of events, the Liberation Army appeared on the battlefield with an entirely new weapon, a tread-mounted armored tank known as the Tulip #3. The soldiers of the Helman Army were completely unprepared to fight against the unstoppable machine, and began to fall in droves as it steadily approached the city’s walls.
Thrown into a panic by the sudden reversal, Fletcher called for a retreat, only to learn that the heavy equipment worn by his soldiers made them incapable of fleeing quickly enough to escape the tank’s warpath. With the Tulip fast approaching and no immediate means of stopping it available to them, Fletcher and his surrounding subordinates hurriedly fled into the city and took refuge inside of Orly Cathedral, the local branch of the Continent’s largest religion the AL Church. Fletcher demanded Sel Catchgolf, the nun that presided over the church, to conceal their location from the Liberation Army, threatening to have his men kill the civilians that had also taken shelter within it if she did not. Ithere was sickened by Fletcher’s craven desperation, but avoided raising a hand against him for the sake of seeing the full extent of the Liberation Army’s miraculous turnaround without interfering himself.
While Sel followed through with Fletcher’s orders, her efforts were foiled by Rance, the Liberation Army’s leader, who refused to listen to her claims that no one was inside of her church and barged in without permission. Just as Rance and his allies entered, Fletcher’s soldiers attempted to assault some of the young women they held captive; an act of such vileness that it pushed Ithere beyond his breaking point and inspired him to step in directly. Ithere commanded Leila to kill each of Fletcher’s subordinates, leaving the out-of-shape commander to fight Rance’s party alone. Fletcher tried to combat his foes using the Modell Leg, the special technique that had once made him a legend across the Continent, but found himself to be too out of shape to perform it correctly and was quickly killed with little difficulty.Immediately following Fletcher’s demise, Ithere approached Rance applauding his victory and, eager to see the full extent of his strength, ordered Leila to attack him. After an intense clash, Rance managed to knock Leila unconscious and emerge victorious yet again. Impressed, Ithere asked Rance for his name, to which Rance answered by boastfully declaring himself to be the strongest man in the world. Ithere responded that he would make sure to remember him before beginning to make his exit from the church, claiming that taking action himself would be too much of an honor to the disgusting Fletcher's legacy.
As Ithere started to leave the church, he was shot from behind by a fire laser cast by Shizuka Masou, a young mage from Kathtom who had been acting as a leading member of the Liberation Army. While he was unharmed by the attack, Ithere was left somewhat surprised by it, and turned around to inform Shizuka that such things had no effect on him. She replied by asserting that it would have been pointless to have assumed that without trying for herself, which charmed the Dark Lord. Content to have gotten to see so many moving displays of willpower, Ithere left Red with a smile.
Following the Helman Army’s defeat at Red, Ithere returned to Leazas Castle to reconvene with Noce and Satella, where he revealed that he had encountered the Rance that Lia had spoken of. Agreeing with Lia’s evaluation that he was “strong and cool”, Ithere informed Satella that Rance was in Red, prompting her to move in the direction of the city in search of him. Satella’s effort to capture the Leazas Holy Armor from Rance ended in crushing failure, with her guardian Isis being destroyed and both herself and her guardian Caesar taking heavy damage. Prioritizing his master’s safety over the mission, Caesar fled to the Monster Realm with Satella in tow, prematurely ending her involvement with Noce’s plan.
Some days later, Thoma Lipton, the general of the Helman 3rd Army, began preparations to move the bulk of his forces through Hoch Gorge, a mountainous region located along the borders of Red and The O, to launch a decisive attack on the Liberation Army. With Noce’s permission, Ithere had his Apostles withdraw from their previous positions to travel with him to The O and assist in preparing for the coming battle. At The O, Ithere met with Thoma to discuss his involvement in the operation. Thoma expressed great hesitation at cooperating with a Dark Lord, but agreed to accept Ithere's help for the sake of reducing the strain on his soldiers. Ithere noted that Thoma seemed generally unenthusiastic about the campaign, to which the general answered that he was merely doing what he could for the sake of his country. Admiring Thoma's resolve, Ithere obediently readied himself and his Apostles to follow his command.
As the Helman Army moved through Hoch Gorge, it was intercepted by the Liberation Army, who had acquired information about its movements by capturing and interrogating Sepia Landstar, a vice-captain in Thoma’s unit that had been made privy to the operation. While caught off guard by the ambush, Thoma held firm and attempted to coordinate a counterattack of his own; transforming the gorge into the site of the decisive battle for control of The O. Watching the conflict from atop a nearby cliff, Ithere commended the Liberation Army’s ingenuity in taking advantage of the situation to gain the upper hand against a stronger enemy. Eager to earn his praise, his Apostles Sapphire and Garnet asked to take the field and confront the Liberation Army themselves, with Topaz choosing to remain at his side to admire his face as he stared transfixed at the fighting.The battle raged on for several hours, with the Liberation Army steadily pushing the Helman Army backward over time. Both Garnet and Sapphire were forced to exit the frontlines after being overwhelmed in battle by the Tulip #3 and the Leazas Red Corps, respectively. Observing the struggle, Ithere became concerned that the Tulip’s power was too great of a crutch for the Liberation Army to rely on, and resolved to dispose of the tank for the sake of seeing how Rance would react to losing it. To carry out this plan, he instructed Topaz to pool her magical energy together with that of Garnet and Sapphire when they returned to her location and cast the K-Type Black Destruction Beam, a top-level attack spell. The three were then to fire the beam continuously in the direction of the Tulip while he obstructed the path of anyone that tried to disturb them. The strategy had immediate results, with the black destruction beam dealing heavy damage to the Tulip and preventing it from advancing.
In an effort to save the Tulip from being destroyed, Shizuka, who had been riding atop it along with its creator Maria Custard, sprinted in the direction of the black destruction beam to stop it from being fired. As she drew closer toward the source of the beam, she began to recognize the bright colors of its casters, and fired her own most powerful spell, the White Destruction Beam, in their direction to interrupt them. The three Apostles redirected their destruction beam to intercept the attack midair before it could land, negating any potential damage to themselves. Despite already being exhausted from firing it once, Shizuka motioned to cast the white destruction beam a second time, but was stopped by Ithere, who recognized her from their encounter in Red. Not wanting to harm a woman, Ithere advised Shizuka to cease what she was doing and flee, but was stubbornly ignored. Enthused by Shizuka’s pluck, Ithere drew his sword and slowly started walking toward her, forcing her to engage him in combat.Facing off against Ithere, Shizuka first fired several weak attack spells at him to confirm that his invincibility field would negate them. When Ithere walked through the attacks with no visible signs of damage, she instead experimented with using the environment to damage him indirectly by casting the spell sticky ground near his feet to stop his movement. The spell proved effective by momentarily halting Ithere in his tracks, which prompted her to generate a controlled earthquake to break the ground beneath him and trap him within it. While this strategy initially appeared to succeed, with Ithere falling through the collapsing rubble, he was able to swiftly free his feet from the viscous material they had been covered in and climb back to the surface before becoming stuck underground. Using the few seconds Ithere spent recovering from the fall, Shizuka prepared an additional white destruction beam and fired it directly at him, which ultimately had no effect on the Dark Lord. Refusing to give up, Shizuka began trying in vain to throw whatever attack spell she could muster at Ithere as he approached until finally being knocked to the ground by a violent flurry of slashes from his sword.
Standing over her wounded body, Ithere asked Shizuka why she bothered continuing trying to damage him when he had already told her that it was impossible to harm a Dark Lord. Shizuka answered by slowly rising to her feet and declaring that people who claimed things to be impossible without trying for themselves had already given up, and that only she could define what she was and wasn’t capable of doing. These words deeply shook Ithere, who was reminded for the first time in over a millennium of the regret he felt after surrendering himself to Gele. Now frantic to prove her wrong, Ithere stared directly into Shizuka’s eyes and attempted to seize control over her mind, repeating once again that a human could not win against a Dark Lord. Shizuka refused to break eye contact and continued to endure, gaining strength to resist by thinking of how Rance would mock her were she to fail.
In a final effort to defeat Ithere, Shizuka mustered together the last of her energy to cast the spell fire blast on the surrounding area, intending to suffocate him amid the flames. Having pushed her body far beyond its limits, she fell unconscious mere seconds later, with the fire she had created extinguishing soon afterward. Ithere, though physically unharmed by the fight, was immensely impacted by the unshakable will Shizuka had displayed throughout it, marveling to himself about how she had not once broken her fierce gaze. After spending several minutes quietly admiring her face, he collected her body and fled from the battlefield, not even bothering to so much as contact his Apostles about his whereabouts. The Liberation Army eventually emerged victorious from the battle shortly after Ithere’s retreat, with Rance successfully defeating the Dark Lord’s Apostles before they were able destroy the Tulip #3 and Thoma ordering his remaining soldiers to retreat into Leazas; pushing the Helman Army one step closer to being driven out of the country.
Sometime after the battle, Ithere carried Shizuka to a cabin hut located along the outskirts of Hoch Gorge and began tending to her injuries. Upon regaining consciousness, Shizuka was shocked to see the person she had been fighting now caring for her at her bedside. She tried multiple times to question him about his intentions, but was persistently refused an answer.After recovering enough of her strength to move around again, Shizuka did not waste any time in exiting the cabin and returning to her friends, with Ithere making no effort to try and stop her. Before leaving, she asked him one final time why he had saved her, claiming that she didn’t think Dark Lords were capable of compassion without an ulterior motive. Ithere spent several moments trying to find the right words to explain his behavior, being forced to articulate emotions that he had long hidden from himself to another person. Finally, he plainly admitted that he could not bear to accept the shame he felt by allowing his will to be broken by the Demon King, and had dedicated his life as a Dark Lord toward doing the same to others to deny his feelings. When Shizuka defied his expectations and bitterly continued to resist him until the very end, he was reminded for the first time of the kind of person he had aspired to be, and was overcome by a sensation of hope. Ithere then confessed that he desired to gain the same determination in his eyes that Shizuka had, and asked her to come with him to the Monster Realm to serve under Hornet. Shizuka studied his gaze for any hint of his brainwashing ability, but was surprised to see only pure, passionate honesty staring back at her. After a tense period of silence, she at last replied that she wished the two of them had never met, and continued on her way out of the cabin.
Ithere returned to Leazas Castle sometime after parting ways with Shizuka. While he was immediately swarmed by his concerned Apostles asking about his long absence, he could not rid his mind of thoughts of Shizuka, and ignored their questions. Meeting with Noce, Ithere suggested reorienting their strategy around the changing tide of the war by allowing the Liberation Army to reach Leazas Castle and having Rance bring the Leazas Holy Armor to them. Noce agreed, but remained distant throughout the conversation, muttering to himself that Chaos, the power needed to help their lord, was within their grasp. For the first time since the mission to retrieve Chaos had started, Ithere faintly recalled having heard the name of the sword before, and, with thoughts of Gele fresh in his mind, felt a growing sense of dread envelop his heart.
After several harrowing battles, the Liberation Army finally reached Leazas Castle and managed to covertly infiltrate it by hiding inside of a Golden Hanny and presenting it as an offering of surrender to the Helman Army. With the Holy Armor now present in the castle, Noce turned against Helman’s forces and instructed Ithere to follow Rance’s party from the shadows to ensure that it would free Lia and open the sealed chamber where Chaos was being kept. During the Liberation Army’s invasion, Ithere noticed that Noce had begun carrying himself with a vigor that he had not displayed for hundreds of years, and came to the terrifying realization that his worst suspicions were true. Remembering the slavish devotion Noce had shown for Gele throughout her reign, Ithere concluded that Chaos was the weapon Gi had used to seal her power and free humanity from her carnage, and that Noce planned to break this seal and bring that same carnage to the world once again. Believing himself to lack the power needed to oppose the former Elite Dark Lord, Ithere instead simply asked Noce if he sought to turn back time, and resigned himself to the coming storm when the other man refused to give a direct answer.Noce’s scheme finally came to fruition when Rance entered Chaos’ hidden chamber and drew the sword from its resting place, freeing Gele from her prison. Ithere felt Gele’s presence as soon as she reemerged, and was instantly filled with an intense sense of fear and nausea. When Noce escorted Gele to his location, Ithere wasted no time in kneeling at her feet, and obediently accompanied her when she left to seek a means of replenishing her depleted strength. Experiencing the same despair he had a thousand years previously, Ithere became certain that the current age of humanity would soon be brought to an end.
As she fed on the lifeforce of various young women within Leazas Castle, Gele remained almost completely silent, and barely acknowledged her surroundings. She was momentarily lifted from her stupor after detecting that Chaos, which Noce had broken in half immediately after she was released, had been restored, and tersely commanded Ithere to seek it out and destroy it once more. Diligently following her orders, Ithere divided himself and his Apostles into two groups to search for the sword: sending Topaz and Sapphire in the direction of the castle’s western tower while he and Garnet scanned the main courtyard.
In the courtyard, Ithere followed behind Garnet as she fought off several soldiers from both the Helman and Leazas armies before reuniting with Shizuka, who had rushed ahead of her allies to face his Apostle. Ithere interrupted the fight, asked Garnet to search for Chaos elsewhere, assuring her that he would handle the battle in her place, and quietly approached Shizuka. Alone amidst the battlefield, neither person said anything for several moments until Ithere finally broke the silence by candidly asking Shizuka if she would become his Apostle. Shizuka responded with confused irritation, questioning if he merely sought to make her his compliant toy in spite of everything he had previously said to her. When Ithere attempted to explain his change in behavior by revealing that the Demon King had been revived, she brusquely remarked that it merely meant that there was one more enemy that needed to be dealt with, and showed no sign of giving in. Ithere feebly shook his head at this affirmation, telling Shizuka that humankind had already been reduced to powerless livestock under Gele’s reign once before, and that his fatalism was born from experience rather than postulation. Outraged by these claims, Shizuka continued to protest, and accused Ithere of having given up without even trying.
Before he could offer a rebuttal, Ithere was struck from behind by Rance, who, wielding the repaired Chaos, was able to penetrate the invincibility field and damage him. Ithere quickly regained his composure and drew his sword to counter Rance’s attacks in time to sustain only shallow wounds. In an effort to obtain Chaos without prolonging the encounter any further, Ithere tried to gain control over Rance’s mind, only for the warrior to confidently announce that he would never think of staring into another man’s eyes and continue viciously slashing at him. As the struggle continued, Ithere’s eyes fell onto Shizuka once more, which compelled him to end the battle without taking Rance’s life. Emitting a bright magical flash from his free hand, he temporarily blinded his opponent and used the brief window to flee deeper into the courtyard.
Wasting no time to regroup, Rance and his allies hurriedly pursued the missing Ithere, defeating Garnet when she attempted to impede them. The party eventually found the Dark Lord lost in thought in a side garden, and hid in the shadows out of his sight to discuss a way to subdue him. During the meeting, Rance accused Shizuka of having betrayed the group for Ithere; noting the discussion he had witnessed them having and the casual way with which she said his name. While Shizuka immediately denied this claim, she was resistant to speak any further about their relationship, only admitting to their interactions at Hoch Gorge after ceaseless taunting from Rance. Combining this information with what he had seen of the two, Rance deduced that Ithere had fallen in love with Shizuka, and started mocking her for allowing herself to be seduced by a Dark Lord solely due to his good looks. Shizuka protested in anger, pushing Rance to ask if she would be willing to kill Ithere if they were to fight. When she replied that she would do whatever it took to win, Rance ordered her to strip naked and embrace Ithere, arguing that being held by the woman he loved would cause him to drop his guard and be made into an easy target. Though Shizuka was opposed to the audacious plan, insisting that Rance merely wanted to humiliate her, she was soon pressured into compliance by his childish chiding, and grudgingly started to take off her clothes.
Completely naked, Shizuka quietly approached Ithere, who had been contemplating to himself why he had become so reluctant to harm her, and called out to him from behind. Already startled by suddenly hearing her voice, Ithere was frozen in shock upon turning around to see Shizuka without clothing. At a loss for what to say, Shizuka stammered that she had changed her mind about becoming his Apostles after their relationship had made Rance turn against her in suspicion. Ithere was flooded by feelings of confusion, delight, hesitation, and relief all at once after hearing this confession, but regained his composure after assuring himself that making Shizuka his Apostle was the only way to save her from Gele’s wrath. To commence the ceremony needed to convert her into an Apostle, he lightly dug his nails through the skin on her neck to draw blood, and nervously motioned to bury his face into it.As Ithere’s mouth moved near Shizuka’s neck, Rance appeared behind him, viciously stabbed Chaos in his back, and violently twisted the sword through the wound to maximize the pain he inflicted. The Dark Lord narrowly fought through the excruciating agony he was in and Rance in the temple, pushing the warrior backwards and removing Chaos from his body. Severely injured and vomiting blood, Ithere staggered to his feet and turned his eyes toward Shizuka, who had used the confusion to clothe herself and was now preparing to fire a spell in his direction. Despite the great danger her betrayal had placed him in, Ithere could not find it in himself to be upset with her, and expressed satisfaction at her decision to remain true to herself by doing whatever it took to win. While Rance took this surprising display of tenderness as a sign that his opponent had given up, Ithere instead defiantly drew his sword and prepared to fight with every ounce of his remaining strength.
Ithere fought fiercely against Rance’s party, but proved unable to defeat them after being so grievously injured. Using his entire body to launch a final Brutal Attack, Rance finally knocked Ithere onto the ground and sapped him of the last of his energy. Inflicted with mortal wounds, Ithere berated himself for the weakness he showed by allowing a human woman to control his spirit before falling unconscious. Rance prepared to decisively end his opponent’s life by driving Chaos through his skull, but was stopped by Shizuka, who insisted that harming him further would be pointless. Before the group left the courtyard to confront Noce and Gele, Shizuka took one final look at the dying Ithere, experiencing complex feelings about him until the very end.
While Rance and his allies prepared to fight against the Demon King to decide the fate of the world, Ithere was awoken in the courtyard by his Apostles, who had each been beaten and assaulted by the Leazas Liberation Army while unsuccessfully trying to capture Chaos. Ithere tried to bid farewell to the three, but found himself too injured to do so. To his astonishment, his Apostles started to pry into their own injuries to collect the blood he had given them and return it to him. Ithere attempted to dissuade them from doing so, asserting that his wounds were too great to recover from and that they would likely die after losing their Apostle abilities in their current states. The trio assured him in response that it was their duty as his Apostles to protect him at all costs, and that the only way for them to do so in their present condition was by using the last of their energy to grant him the strength needed to move his body to a place where his Demonic Blood Soul could not be tampered with. Too weak to protest, Ithere watched in shock as the three proclaimed their love for him one final time before returning his blood and ending their own lives.To his astonishment, Ithere found himself able to move once more after his Apostles' sacrifice, and was filled with a newfound surge of determination in response to their final display of devotion. Returning to his feet, his thoughts immediately went to Rance. Unable to bring himself to hate the other man in spite of all he had done to him, he quietly resolved to place his trust in the boundless resolve Rance had shown throughout their interactions to save humanity from Gele. Taking a final look at the bodies of his Apostles, he quietly dragged himself out of the courtyard in search of a safer place to end his life.
Ithere eventually succumbed to his injuries sometime later, with his body transforming into a demonic blood soul in an unknown corner of Leazas Castle. The trust he had chosen to give to Rance was ultimately well-founded, as he managed to defeat Gele and return her to her interdimensional prison. Forgotten in the confusion of war, Ithere's blood soul was never found, and remained safely hidden away even after the end of the Rance Series. Despite this, rumors would periodically circulate throughout the Leazas Castle staff after the end of the 7th-Leazas Helman War alleging that the Ghost of a handsome blonde man could be seen wandering the halls during the night; suggesting that Ithere's strong presence could still be felt even following the loss of his body.
Ithere's likeness made a brief appearance during the events of Rance IX as a part of the witch Miracle Tou's magical projection of the Twelve Knights, her fantasy all-male elite guard. As a member of the Twelve Knights, Miracle gave Ithere the nickname of "Prism Darkness" and stated her belief that his ability to control the minds of others would make him a very interesting ally. After some contemplation, Rance was able to recall Ithere and revealed that he had already killed him several years in the past, claiming to have "magnificently defeated him in a fair and square one-on-one fight". Miracle was surprised to hear that Rance had already fought Ithere, and made a note to reorganize the group at a later time.
Ithere was briefly mentioned during the events of Rance X, where Satella listed him along with Noce as former members of the Hornet Faction while summarizing the War of the Factions to Rance. Recognized their names, Rance remembered the two as the Darks Lords he killed during the 7th Helman-Leazas War, prompting Satella to angrily blame him for weakening the Hornet Faction's forces even more than they already had been. Unperturbed, Rance argued that killing the pair was the natural response to them attempting to invade the Human Realm, which Satella was unable to dispute. Ithere was later mentioned a second time by the Dark Lord Lei, who named him alongside Noce and Gi while reminiscing about the excitement of the GL era after reuniting with Chaos during the Dark Lord Extermination Squad's operation to defeat him.
While Ithere's role is largely identical in the original version of Rance III to what it is in its remake, no references are made to either his past prior to becoming a Dark Lord or his fixation with human willpower, causing both his interest in Shizuka and disgust of Fletcher to seemingly be based entirely on their physical attractiveness. During his final battle with Rance's party, he is encountered in the western tower of Leazas Castle rather than the courtyard, and transforms into a gigantic monstrous version of himself not seen at all in the remake. His death is also implied to occur immediately following his defeat, as his body disappears after he utters his last words.
Ithere is briefly mentioned in the non-canonical Kichikuou Rance during the Hornet Faction's introduction, where both he and Noce are listed as former members of the group that were defeated by Rance after manipulating Patton for their own gain.
Personality and AppearanceEditIthere has the appearance of a young man with a lean, muscular build, long blonde hair that extends past his shoulders, and dazzling red-colored eyes. At just over two meters in height, he is exceptionally tall, and stands above even the average Helmanian man. Ithere is often noted to be extraordinarily beautiful, with every inch of his body, from his lips to his fingers, being described as perfectly proportioned and alluring. He is occasionally referred to by the nicknames of "The Prince of Darkness" and "The Beautiful Dark Lord" in reference to his stunning good looks, and is widely considered to be the most attractive of the male Dark Lords by the denizens of the Monster Realm. Ithere's clothing consists of a black bodysuit embroidered with sparkling red jewels along the wrists and abdomen worn under a flowing black cape with an enormous furred collar that is similarly draped in red gemstones. The inner lining of Ithere's cape resembles that of a swirling fire and seems to vary in its intensity depending on his mood, becoming much more ferocious when he is distressed.
While Ithere looks largely the same during his appearance in the original release of Rance III, his eyes are a golden yellow color while his clothing consists of black and red plate armor worn over a white tunic. His cape is also considerably narrower and lacks the fiery underside it has in the remake, overall giving it a more subdued appearance. Ithere is notably still shown with this design during his brief appearances in Rance IX, as its release predated that of Rance 03.
When transformed into his monstrous form in Rance III, Ithere roughly triples in size and gains a steely grey coloration to his skin that causes it to resemble a thick set of armor. Though all of his facial features disappear in this form, he retains his luxurious blonde hair, allowing him to remain somewhat recognizable.
Poised and polite, Ithere stands out among his fellow Dark Lords for the unusual chivalrousness he displays toward others. While it is common for a Dark Lord to possess a certain degree of antisocial tendencies, Ithere maintains a contemplative courteousness about himself at all times, and makes a point of always addressing others in a formal and respectful manner regardless of their station. He is capable of showing boundless compassion and loyalty to his loved ones, and chooses to respect and support their decisions even when they go against his own interests. This innate kindness is perhaps best seen through his relationship with Hornet, who he remains earnestly devoted to even after he begins to lose faith in his mission to retrieve Chaos.The most notable trait that Ithere possesses is his fascination with beauty and hatred of ugliness. He almost exclusively uses the word "beautiful" to express approval for things and, inversely, contemptuously describes nearly everything he feels aversion to as being "ugly". Rather than physical attractiveness, Ithere assesses beauty based on the strength of a person's will and character, and values showing courage and resistance in the face of certain doom above all else. As such, he is naturally drawn toward people who display determination and drive during calamity, and is quick to turn against those that give up or show cowardice.
Ithere’s noble demeanor extends even into his interactions with humans. Though most other Dark Lords view humanity on a spectrum ranging from passive indifference to outright hatred, he has no problem praising members of the species who are able to sufficiently impress him. With this urbanity also comes a great deal of altruism, as he prefers to avoid harming humans directly during conflict and is even willing to assist those that he believes are deserving of his aid. Ithere is by no means exempt from the racial superiority often associated with Dark Lords, however, and regards humans with a condescending amusement that makes it obvious he considers them to be less than himself. Rather than view them as creatures genuinely capable of performing feats of limitless courage and tenacity, Ithere believes that all humans are fundamentally weak and will inevitably give in to defeat when faced with an obstacle sufficiently stronger than themselves. As such, he is able to perform incredible acts of cruelty against humans, such as depriving them of their free will through brainwashing, entirely to prove this point, and shows no remorse when doing so.
Both Ithere's fixation on willpower and his preoccupation with human weakness are in fact subconscious projections of his own feelings of inadequacy. He is deeply ashamed of how he allowed Gele to break his spirit and make him submit to her during his time as a human, and at his core considers himself to be "weak" and "ugly" for having given up. To disassociate from his trauma, he chooses to subject other humans to similar hardship, justifying his own inability to show strength when in peril by demonstrating that no human can. When confronted by humans that defy this belief by showing unyielding resolve in the face of any danger, such as Shizuka Masou and Rance, Ithere is forced to acknowledge that his weakness is not true of all people, and displays sincere admiration for their dedication to win through any means necessary.
Ithere exhibits neither his interest in testing the human spirit nor his hidden self-loathing in the original release of Rance III, and is instead presented as being a narcissist. He is shown to be selfish and spontaneous in his beliefs, refusing to help Fletcher Modell simply due to finding him ugly and choosing to save Shizuka's life after becoming entranced by her beauty. Most notably, he does not express any kind of satisfaction after Shizuka uses his feelings for her against him, and instead berates himself for having fallen in love with a human woman. Despite being portrayed less sympathetically overall, he is still made out to be very loyal to Hornet, and explicitly only cooperates with Noce under the mistaken belief that he has her best interests in mind.
Ithere is powerful Dark Lord with a wide range of versatile abilities. While neither his Level Cap nor Skill Levels are known, he is stated to be exactly in-between his two companions during the 7th Leazas-Helman War in terms of overall strength; significantly stronger than Satella and substantially weaker than Noce. Ithere showcased his great power during his final battle against Rance's party, where he was able to provide them a strenuous challenge despite being severely injured throughout it.
Though a skilled mage capable of casting a variety of offensive and defensive spells, Ithere's most impressive skill is his powerful mind-controlling magic. By staring deeply into the eyes of another living being, he is able to dominate their spirit and deprive them of their free will, transforming them into his obedient servant. Individuals under Ithere's control think only of serving him, and are thrown into a state of writhing insanity if they forcefully separated from his side. Compared to his Apostles, who are able to perform similar brainwashing magic, Ithere's power is more comparable to a Curse in nature, and can remain in effect indefinitely provided a sufficiently potent purifying agent isn't used to free the mind of his victim. There is no apparent limit to the number of individuals that Ithere can enchant at once, potentially allowing him to convert entire armies into his followers if given enough time to do so.
As Ithere's brainwashing magic requires him to make eye contact with his target and overpower their will with his own, it can be counteracted by either avoiding his gaze or maintaining a strong mental resistance. Doing so is very difficult to accomplish, however, as his tremendous strength and fighting ability makes it easy for a person's determination to momentarily waver when locked in combat against him.
Outside of his magical talent, Ithere is also an exceptionally skilled sword-fighter. His swordsmanship is noted to be particularly dexterous, as he is able to consecutively slash at an opponent 16 times in a single second. Ithere's prowess with a blade allowed him to disarm Leila Grecni, the second-strongest knight in the nation of Leazas, in a duel, as well as match blows with Rance after being ambushed by him from behind.
In the original release of Rance III, Ithere transforms into a large metallic version of himself to do battle with Rance's party. No exposition is provided as to what this form is, leaving both the nature of the transformation and how it affects Ithere's strength ambiguous. Ithere does not assume this form at any point throughout Rance 03, suggesting that he is no longer canonically considered to possess it.
|Prince of Darkness ~Ithere~ (Rance III ver.)|
|Prince of Darkness ~Ithere~ (Rance 03 ver.)|
- Ithere came in 4th place in the "Males" category of the Rance 03 Popularity Poll and in 18th place in the "Character You Most Want to be Added as an Ally" category of the Rance X Popularity Poll.
- Ithere's predominantly black color scheme, when paired with the signature colors of his Apostles, references the CMYK color model used to create black tones in printing. The codename given to him as a member of the Twelve Knights, "Prism Darkness", further references this motif, as a prism disperses light through itself to produce the colors in a rainbow whereas the CMYK model is an of example subtractive color mixing, which is dependent on the removal of light.
- Ithere's name (アイゼル, aizeru) is possibly intended to be a corruption of the word "Easel" (イーゼル, Īzeru), a device most often used to support paint canvases, in reference to his association with colors.
- Ithere is voiced by Tetsuto Furukawa (古川徹人) in Rance 03.
- Ithere's battle theme,"Prince of Darkness ~Ithere~", is considered to be among the most iconic musical tracks in the Rance series, and was chosen as the representative song for Rance III in the "Grand Ending Movie" medley that plays during the end credits of Rance X. The version of the track featured in Rance 03 notably samples "Cross, Point", Shizuka's theme music from the same game.
- The profile for Ithere written by Mieko Munekata on the now-defunct Rance World Notes section of the Alicesoft website curiously listed his original species as "Human?". As Ithere is stated to have previously been a human in Rance 03, which was released four years after the Rance World Notes site was created, it is assumed that his background had not yet been fully realized at the time the profile was written.
- During the development of Rance Quest, there was intended to be a plotline in which Shizuka became possessed by Ithere after somehow consuming his demonic blood soul, only to regain control over her mind after either overwriting his Soul or expelling the blood soul from her body. This idea was ultimately scrapped for unknown reasons, with Ithere going entirely unmentioned in the final draft of the story. According to Orion, the lead artist of the Rance series, this cut sequence was considered by the development team to be the only opportunity for Ithere to make a reappearance, as the character was never planned to be incorporated into Rance X's scenario.
- During the development of Rance 03, the design team considered redesigning Ithere to have the right side of his face be disfigured beyond recognition, which he would conceal beneath his long hair. After this idea was rejected, Ithere underwent an additional design change to make his clothing and body language more dynamic, with his original pose being instead given to Ex Banquet.
- Ittenchiroku, the director of Rance 03, considers Ithere to be his favorite among the game’s cast, citing expanding on the loose original depiction of a character that made no further appearances in the series to be equal parts challenging and enjoyable. When announcing the results of Rance 03’s popularity poll, Ittenchiroku expressed open disappointment that Ithere was unable to rank among the top three in his category.
- Ithere is the first Dark Lord to be killed in the Rance series, though his status as such can be somewhat contested by the alterations made to the story in Rance 03, where it is ambiguous as to whether he was reduced to a demonic blood soul before or after Noce.
- Following the release of Rance 03, which includes an appearance by him during the prologue, Ithere is the first Dark Lord to canonically appear in the Rance series.
- Despite being described as wielding a sword at several points, Ithere is never shown with a sword throughout Rance 03.
- Ithere's name is translated as "Eisel" in the English translation of Kichikuou Rance.
|Dark Lords||Hornet • Silky Littleraisin • La Hawzel • Satella • Ithere • Meglass • Noce|
|Apostles||Kenja Keiko • Little • Caesar • Isis • Garnet • Sapphire • Topaz|