| Spoiler Alert: This page contains major spoilers from the events of the games. |
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|“||(I'll send them all to Hell... Then my sister will recognize me... And then... And then I'll... I'll finally stop being her puppet...)||”|
—Maha Margaret, struggling to reconcile his feelings of resentment and worship for his sister.
|Age / Birth||16 / GI1005|
|Ht. / Wt.||139cm / 29kg|
|Class||Mage, Warrior (Kichikuou Rance)|
|Affiliation||Minerva Margaret, Helman|
|Skill levels||Magic Lv1 (?), Hammer Combat Lv1 (?)|
|Appeared in||Rance IX, Kichikuou Rance|
About[edit | edit source]
Orphaned shortly after his birth, Maha spent much of his early life living in poverty with his sister. Growing up in the unforgiving slums of Helman caused him to cling to Minerva for safety and guidance, never leaving her side unless explicitly told by her to. While Maha admired his older sister's strong will and relentless drive to elevate herself beyond her means, she often mocked him for his over-reliance on her, claiming that a true man would be able to make decisions and look out for himself. Over time, this bullying made him develop a complex about his own weakness, breeding a contradictory desire within himself to become a strong and independent man to simultaneously earn his sister's approval and escape from her oppression.
At some point into his childhood, Maha accompanied his sister as she enlisted in the Helman 3rd Army stationed there. Though he was too young to serve alongside her, he would often run errands for her in and around the 3rd Army's barracks, and became a regular presence to the soldiers there. Maha was well-liked by much of the 3rd Army, who were endeared by his diligent and hardworking personality and sympathized with the poor treatment he received from his sister. After reaching the minimum age needed to join the army, Maha wasted no time becoming a soldier, and began training in the Magic Arts to serve in the 3rd Army's mage unit. Despite his youth, he proved himself to have a natural talent for spell-casting and was recognized as an advanced level trainee after only a few months of work. He payed little attention to this achievement, however, and remained concerned solely with his sister's response to his progress.
|This section contains spoilers from a game that has not been translated to English yet.|
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In the year LP0006, Minerva was called to meet privately with Stessel Romanov, the prime minister and shadow ruler of Helman who she had forged a tenuous partnership with for the sake of advancing her career. Stessel revealed that Empress Sheila Helman had fled from the imperial palace incognito with a small box he referred to only as the "key to destruction", and gave Minerva a mission to locate and retrieve it from her through any means necessary. To accomplish this task, Minerva ordered Maha to search around the capital city of Lang Bau for Sheila and befriend her, taking the box from her possession after earning enough of her trust to make her drop her guard around him. Maha diligently complied, using transformation magic to alter his appearance and conceal his identity.After some work, Maha succeeded in intercepting Sheila, who had been going by the name Russian Kalette, just as she was exiting Lang Bau. Adopting the alias of Maitrea Meishian (マイトレイア・メイシアン, maitoreia meishian), Maha presented himself to the empress as the son of a pair of nobles who had been assassinated for speaking out against the government's corrupt actions, and asked to accompany her on her journey. Sheila took him at his word, too naive to question his intentions, and happily accepted him as a companion. The duo's travels were brought to an abrupt land as they wandered the arid land outside of Lang Bau, where they were abducted by a caravan of slave traders and taken to Helman's border with the Free Cities Alliance to be sold as property.
During the events of Rance IX, the slave traders transporting Sheila and Maha crossed paths with the warrior Rance and his allies, who had entered Helman to assist Prince Patton Misnarge in staging a revolution to reclaim the country. Hearing the cries of women from within the traders' cargo, Rance swiftly led his party in defeating the group and began having his way with the captured innocents afterwards as a self-imposed reward. To ensure the safety of the younger girls she had been imprisoned with, Sheila agreed to work as Rance's slave for the duration of his time in Helman in exchange for him not laying a hand on them.
Shortly after Sheila was released, Maha was found in a separate caravan alongside various other captured men. Desperate to remain close to the empress, he begged Rance to take him with him, claiming to have nowhere else to go. Rance instantly refused his request, disinterested in working alongside a young boy, and left it to Patton to decide what to do with him. Maha then attempted to persuade Patton and his friend Hubert Lipton to accept him as a companion, insisting that he would not be a burden to them. While the two tried to dissuade him, asserting that what they were doing was not something for a child to become involved in, their reticence allowed him to correctly deduce that they were a part of the Helman Revolutionary Army that had been rumored to be developing along the nation’s outskirts. Maintaining his cover as Maitrea, Maha introduced himself as an aspiring soldier who turned his back on the government after it arranged the deaths of his parents. His story proved enough to move Patton to accept him as an ally and convince Hubert, who remained firmly opposed to the idea, to relent on the grounds that they would leave him at the nearest village if he proved to be too much of a liability.
While serving as a member of Rance and Patton’s party, which quickly earned the nickname of the Outlaws for its disruptive activities, Maha continued to remain beneath suspicion by posing as Maitrea. Now working directly with the leading members of the Revolutionary Army, he expanded the scope of his mission from simply stealing the box from Sheila, as Minerva had asked him, to sabotaging the revolution itself, believing that doing so would prove his independence and ingenuity to his sister. After contemplating stealing the Tulip #1 and floating fortress, two unique and powerful weapons that provided the Outlaws a considerable advantage in battle, from their respective owners, he eventually decided that doing either would ultimately be pointless due to him lacking the knowledge necessary to operate them. He instead settled on taking more discreet measures to compromise the group, such as by deliberately interrupting a pair of Haniwa as they were in the middle of reproducing to cause a vengeful swarm of the creatures to attack Tokugawa Sen and Merci Archa, two key members of the Revolutionary Army, while they were out gathering supplies. To his chagrin, his efforts were routinely foiled by the Outlaws, whose outstanding fighting abilities enabled them to miraculously survive any danger he engineered for them to fall into.
With each of his attempts at disrupting the Outlaws' progress ending in failure, Maha resolved to return his focus to his original mission of obtaining the mysterious box. A few nights after the Outlaws entered battle against the Helman 1st Army, he snuck into Sheila's quarters in Rance's portable cottage and began rifling through her belongings. Just as he located the box, however, Sheila returned to her room and expressed confusion as to what he was doing in it. Rather than fabricate a cover story, Maha instead showed the box to Sheila and coldly asked if it was the key to destruction. Sheila instantly told him not to touch the box upon seeing it, confirming that it was the item he desired. When Sheila tried to get him to explain himself, Maha bitterly told her that Maitrea never existed before incapacitating her with a glacial storm spell and rushing out of the room. His exit was blocked by the Ninja Kentou Kanami, who arrived on the scene after hearing the commotion, but he quickly blew her out of the way by casting another glacial storm spell.
Just as Maha neared the door that led out of the portable cottage, he was stopped by the mutated Human Pigu Geliciam, who divided her body in two to overwhelm him. After being disoriented by a strike from one of the Pigus, Maha had the box pulled from his hands by the other. As this occurred Rance entered the cottage to investigate the noise, which created a small opening for Maha to run past him and away from the camp. Though the box was returned to Sheila's possession, the Outlaws were left dumbfounded by Maha's sudden betrayal and uncertain of his whereabouts after he made his escape.
His status as a spy exposed and the box wrestled from his grasp, Maha was forced to return to Lang Bau empty-handed and full of anxiety over the consequences of failing his sister. Minerva, who had already connected the Outlaws' activities to those of the Revolutionary Army, showed little interest in the information Maha obtained about the group during his time as a part of it and pressured him into explaining why he had not brought her the key. Maha tried to justify himself by describing the incident that caused him to lose it, but was immediately dismissed by his sister, who informed him that a true man would never give up halfway and bluntly ordered him to go back and retrieve the box. Believing that Rance would kill him if they were to ever reunite, Maha questioned Minerva as to how he was supposed to get close to the Outlaws. She answered by handing him a Puchi Hanny, a powerful explosive, and telling him to detonate it if the situation turned unfavorable to take out their enemies alongside himself. Terrified by the notion of dying, Maha meekly tried to argue against the plan, only to be quickly goaded into compliance by Minerva, who taunted him for being useless and claimed that he would earn her praise if he succeeded in bringing the key back to her. Equipped with the puchi hanny, Maha departed from Lang Bau in the direction of the Outlaws' floating fortress, his mind abuzz with a variety of emotions.
Maha approached the Outlaws encampment sometime after the group's victory against the crazed doctor Oama Motohide. Clutching the puchi hanny in his shaking hands, he hesitated in entering the camp itself and instead chose to linger in the surrounding forest. He was seen by Kanami, who had been scouting the perimeter around the camp, causing him to run away. Kanami reported her findings back to the rest of the Outlaws, which prompted them to split up and begin searching the forest to find Maha, concerned for his well-being and eager to hear an explanation for his past actions. He was eventually found crouched down in grief near a cliff by Rick Addison, a legendary swordsman from the Kingdom of Leazas who had been accompanying the Outlaws on the orders of his queen. When asked why he had done the things he had, Maha revealed to Rick his true identity and the mission Minerva had given him. On the verge of tears, he admitted that he could no longer handle the stress of being his sister's puppet and begged Rick to help him. Rick maintained a kindly calm, encouraging Maha to explain his circumstances to the rest of the group and apologize, and approached him to offer his hand and help him to his feet.As Rick moved toward him, a demented grin sprouted on Maha's face. Mocking the swordsman for his idiocy internally, Maha reached into his clothing for the puchi hanny and prepared to detonate it, reassuring himself that he would be able to break away from his sister and become his own person after killing the Outlaws. Before he could go through with the plan, he was slashed through the shoulder by Rance, who had appeared suddenly on the scene and proceeded to mercilessly kick him off the nearby cliff. Barely able to register what had just occurred, Maha could only muster a few feeble profanities as he plummeted downward before offering a final apology to his sister for failing her as his explosive finally set off.
The remaining members of the Outlaws arrived just as the explosion occurred and expressed a combination of horror and confusion at the event. Rick relayed what Maha had told him to the rest of the group, and was angrily scolded by Rance for his reluctance to harm a child even when his own life was at stake. Observing the depth of the cliff Maha had been knocked off of, Patton mournfully stated that it would be unlikely for them to find and bury his body, quietly seething over the ease at which Minerva was willing to sacrifice her own brother. The cruelty and pointlessness of Maha's death weighed heavily on many of the Outlaws for the remainder of the revolution, who felt frustration over their powerlessness to prevent it.
In the non-canonical Kichikuou Rance, Maha appears as a member of the Helman 3rd Army serving under Minerva. He is not depicted as having any of the internal conflict relating to his sister that he is shown to have during his canonical appearance, and is instead presented as being innocently oblivious to how she perceives him to be a disposable pawn.
Maha will engage the Leazas Army in battle with the rest of the 3rd Army after it approaches either Pawn or Micrograd while at war with Helman. If his unit is defeated in battle, he will die calling out in vain for his sister to save him.
If the Leazas Army approaches Lang Bau from the western city of Laurengrad while Maha is still alive, he will be ordered by his sister to lead an expedition to assault the Kalar village to obtain forehead crystals to enhance the 3rd Army's weaponry. Maha is apprehensive about the mission, having heard rumors of the kalar placing a deadly Curse on all who abduct their crystals, but is assured by Minerva that she possesses a special charm that will make him immune to the curse. Choosing to believe his sister, the fearful Maha launches an attack on the kalar village with his soldiers, who encourage him to assist in sexually assaulting the defeated kalar to transform their forehead crystals into their potent blue form. The group returns to Lang Bau with 467 crystals, which are each quickly forged into powerful magic swords.
Soon after the crystals arrive at Lang Bau, Maha and the rest of the soldiers involved in the attack fall victim to a curse conjured by the kalar queen Pastel Kalar in revenge for their crime and begin to rapidly die off. Maha begs Minerva to use the charm she had told him about to save him, only for her to admit that she had simply made the item up to get him to do what she wanted. In his final moments, Maha weakly mutters to the indifferent Minerva that he trusted her before collapsing dead on the ground.
Personality and Appearance[edit | edit source]
Maha was a boyish young man with tan skin, purple eyes, and short dark red hair that split off at the back of his head into two long strands. While he had reached mid-adolescence by the time of his first appearance, he was exceptionally petite, and stood at only 139cm. In conjunction with his soft facial features, this caused him to appear to be much younger than his actual age, to the point where he was regularly mistaken for a child. Maha's clothing consisted of a small-sized variant of the uniform worn by all Helman mages, and was composed of a red and white cloak with gold trimming, a golden neck guard, a dark green dress shirt, and dark blue robes. When assuming the alias of Maitrea Meishian, Maha used transformation magic to lighten his skin tone and color both his hair and eyes a dark shade of blue. The colors of his clothing were also altered by the magic, causing the red of his cape to turn blue and his dress to take on a mustard brown color.
Maha's appearance is significantly different in the non-canonical Kichikuou Rance. While he possesses the short stature, tan skin, and red hair of his canonical counterpart, his eyes are colored blue and he has numerous light brown freckles splattered across each of his cheeks. Along with retaining his distinct hair antenna, his hair is also styled into a pair of pigtails draped on either side of his face. His clothing consists of iron plate armor worn over a dark blue tunic, blue shorts, purple gloves, and a white neck wrap decorated with a star-shaped locket.
Much of Maha's identity was shaped by the emotional neglect and abuse he endured while living in severe poverty under the care of his older sister. As Minerva would often tease him for being overly dependent on her while growing up, he steadily developed a complex about his lack of strength and a fixation with earning her approval. These feelings were often taken advantage of by his sister to manipulate him into acting as her obedient servant, ordering him to perform whatever menial labor she desired him to in exchange for the chance to receive her praise. Having long hardened her heart to the world around her, Minerva had no real interest in Maha beyond his use as a tool to advance her own goals, and showed little concern with ordering him to perform extremely dangerous tasks, including ones that endangered his life, for her sake.
Maha was aware that his sister viewed him as an expendable puppet, which caused his desire to be acknowledged by her to be tempered with a deep-seated resentment that made him yearn to break away from her influence and live as his own person. These opposing urges greatly impacted Maha's sense of reason and often made him act in a manner completely contradictory to his own thoughts, such as when he agreed to follow Minerva's command to act as a suicide bomber by convincing himself that doing so would somehow grant him independence from her. Maha's last thoughts before dying were an apology to his sister for failing to do as she had asked him to, revealing that he remained utterly incapable of overcoming the control she held over him even at the end of his life.
The great impact that Minerva had on Maha's psyche was evident even outside of his relationship with her. While generally quiet and passive when interacting with others, he was prone to expressing exceedingly harsh judgements on people when left in the company of his own thoughts. As a consequence of his idolization of his sister, he viewed guile and ruthlessness as being indispensable qualities for a person to truly be considered strong, and internally looked down on anyone who he perceived to be lacking in either trait. Maha himself demonstrated this cunning on multiple occasions, managing to both uncover the Outlaws' ties to the Revolutionary Army and locate the box he was assigned to take from Sheila Helman solely through the use of context clues and his own intuition. His frustrations with Minerva's taunting also made him naturally competitive and easily angered by insults, particularly when directed at his strength or masculinity. This resulted in him very quickly developing an antagonistic relationship with Rance, whose propensity for throwing childish insults led the two to have many altercations, including an impromptu drinking contest sparked by Rance claiming that Maha was too young to be capable of handling alcohol.
Throughout his time acting as Maitrea, Maha presented himself as being an earnest youth with aspirations of becoming a strong and reliable man, masking his efforts to gain information on the Revolutionary Army beneath the guise of innocent inquisitiveness. Though he acknowledged the strength of his companions in the Outlaws, referring to them as "ridiculously strong" after observing their repeated victories against unreasonable odds, he also felt a powerful revulsion toward their kindness and claimed them all to be "idiots" for failing to question his motives. In particular, he appeared to have especially negative opinions about the bull-headed Rance and the gentle Rick Addison, calling them "the biggest idiots of them all" for going against the image of strength instilled in him by Minerva. Maha took advantage of Rick's merciful nature during his final confrontation with him, where he seemingly feigned a heartfelt cry for help to him as a means of making the swordsman vulnerable to a surprise attack. Despite this, he was also noted to have secretly looked upon Rick in awe after learning of his past as a weak and mild-mannered boy who became one of the most legendary warriors on the Continent through hard work, suggesting that he genuinely did admire him on some level and that his plea for Rick to save him from his sister may have been more than merely a lie.
Maha is presented as being a far more innocent character throughout his appearance in Kichikuou Rance, showing none of the inner turmoil of his canonical portrayal. While cowardly and timid, he is completely devoted to aiding his sister in whatever way he can and chooses to trust her when she claims to be capable of saving him from the kalar's curse, voicing disbelief at her betrayal when she is proven to have been lying. He is also made out to be more openly compassionate toward others, and expresses shock and horror after learning that Minerva heartlessly sacrificed their servant Tami John to stall the enemy.
Abilities[edit | edit source]
Despite his youth, Maha was a formidable mage with an exceptional level of potential. Possessing the Magic Lv1 Skill Level, he had a natural aptitude for spellcasting that he made great use of across his short life, achieving the rank of an advanced level magic user within the Helman Army by the age of 16. He seemed to particularly excel at ice magic, and was capable of casting the spell glacial storm, a powerful attack with a wide range of effect, multiple times in quick succession. Perhaps the most impressive demonstration of Maha's talents as a mage was his development of a completely unique offensive spell known as Ja Walkure, in which he summoned a large icicle to drop on the heads of several enemies at once for devastating damage. It is highly unusual for a person in possession of the Magic Lv1 skill level to be capable of creating their own spells, particularly ones of such a high caliber of power as Maha's Ja Walkure, making his creation of it enough to warrant calling him a prodigy.
Though a mage by trade, Maha also possessed the Hammer Combat Lv1 skill, granting him a knack for wielding heavy weaponry like axes and hammers in a similar vein to his older sister. As he is only ever shown utilizing magic in combat, however, it is unknown if he developed this skill in any meaningful way.
In addition to his skill with magic, Maha was notable for having a tremendously high Level Cap of 120, the highest known finite Level cap recorded for any human in history; surpassing the likes of even legendary heroes such as Fujiwara Ishimaru, the first emperor of the eastern nation of JAPAN, and British, the leader of the fabled Adventuring party The Legendary Five. While such a level cap bestowed Maha with a truly unparalleled amount of potential for an individual, he was unable to ever make any particular use of it, and only managed to reach the slightly above-average level of 28 by the end of his life. In addition, his small and slight body made him very frail and susceptible to physical damage, with a single attack from an ordinary Helman knight being enough to incapacitate him. Even with these shortcomings in mind, Maha was still able to display his effectiveness as a combatant throughout his time as a member of the Outlaws, where he competently fought alongside some of the strongest individuals on the Continent against waves of trained soldiers.
Outside of combat, Maha was proficient at domestic work like cooking and cleaning as a result of having to regularly perform household chores for his sister. He would occasionally put these skills to use while working with the Outlaws, assisting the group with washing and folding laundry for the sake of remaining beneath suspicion.
In his appearance in Kichikuou Rance, Maha is portrayed as a fledgling warrior rather than a mage, and fights with a large axe nearly as big as his body when in combat. While he retains the phenomenal level cap and Hammer Combat Lv1 skill levels of his canonical counterpart, he is not suggested to have any kind of comparable magical ability and is listed as being at the considerably lower level of 11, making him quite weak. Though placed in command of a large army of 1,000 soldiers by his sister, his authority seems to be largely ornamental, with the captain serving directly beneath him often giving him directions on how to lead his troops.
Theme[edit | edit source]
|Theme of Minerva and Maha (Rance IX)|
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- Maha came in 14th place in the "Males and Others" category of the Rance IX Popularity Poll. He is notably the only playable male character to not be included in the "Outlaw Males" category.
- According to his profile in the Kichikuou Rance manual, Maha enjoyed playing quoits in his free time.
- Maha's name is likely derived from the abbreviation given to the Man Hunting Organization, the organization that serves as the main antagonist of the serialized novel Gaia Gear written by Yoshiyuki Tomino, creator of the Mobile Suit Gundam franchise, a frequent source of inspiration for the Rance Series.
- Maha's radical change in design between his appearances in Kichikuou Rance and Rance IX was done to make him resemble the character Maitrea Meishian from the Alicesoft game Mamatoto, with the disguise and alias he assumes while posing as a member of the Outlaws causing the two to become nearly identical. A pair of subtle differences were included with Maha's disguise to hint that he was not the same character as Maitrea: the two long strands of hair splitting off from the back of his head, a trait he shares with Minerva, and his name being spelt as Maitoreia (マイトレイア) rather than Maitrea (マイトレア). It is possible that the gruesome fate Maha is subjected to while dressed to resemble Maitrea is meant to be a darkly comedic reference to the noted dislike Orion, the lead artist of the Rance series and a character designer for Mamatoto, had for the character.
- Maha's weapon in Rance IX, a golden staff named Praios, shares its name and appearance with Maitrea's ultimate weapon in Mamatoto. It is described as only being given to mages who pass the third level of the Helman Army's magic exam, in reference to Praios being Maitrea's third level weapon in Mamatoto.
- The puchi hanny that Maha is given by Minerva wears a distinct fox mask, causing it to resemble the Hanny that can be made into Maitrea's subordinate in Mamatoto.
- Maha's role as a spy that infiltrates the protagonist's party with the intention of stealing a box known as the "key to destruction" parallels that of the character Raisen from Mamatoto, who is recruited in the same chapter as Maitrea.
- Maha's armor in Rance IX, the Mini-Mage Robe, is abbreviated as the "MM Robe" on the status screen, causing it to coincidentally resemble the name of the character M.M Rune, who plays an important role in the game's story. This is acknowledged by the armor's in-game description, which makes a point of saying "It has nothing to do with the Holy Magic Sect." The initials "MM" also match those of the names "Maha Margaret" and "Maitrea Meishian".
- Maha is permanently removed from the player's party in Rance IX after his failed attempt at stealing the key to destruction from Sheila, with any upgrades given to him being transferred to Miracle Tou, a mage that is recruited shortly after his disappearance. As the player automatically begins the game with access to Miracle after completing it once, it is impossible to use Maha in battle outside of a first playthrough.
- Maha is referred to as "Maitrea" in all of his character portrait filenames, including those that depict him out of his disguise, and as "Maha" in the file listings of all scenes where he is the focus, including those that take place while he is posing as Maitrea.