Rei Ginsei Backstory (long; Rei Ginsei Saga ch. 1)
November 4, 2017
While I’m at it, I wanted to properly introduce Rei Ginsei (in the context of my Skyrim character) to people. At the moment, save a few details I’ve shared with one other person, he’s really just been a heavily sculpted Altmer with an odd and unexpected following. BUT HE’S A PERSON, TOO, DAMMIT. He’s also my most favorite, apart from my girl Aria, and I suppose he’s kind of my mascot at this point. I’ll warn you this is pretty badly written, even for me, but I’ve been up all night with a migraine, so cut me some slack maybe? Preash?
Title/Nickname: The Serene Silver Star Symbols: Unicorns/Kirin Patron Deities: Clavicus Vile, Azura Familiar: Sabrael (water-associated daedra )
Race: Altmer Gender: Male Age: ~410 years Height: 7’4″ Weight: ~230 lbs
Rei started life the son of wealthy mages on the Summerset Isles, originally named Celedaen Aedeus. His was the life typical of a spoiled young man; one does not simply become an arrogant prick. He had everything he could possibly want: the finest clothes, the best playthings, the most acclaimed tutors. While he showed the same affinity for magic as his parents, he preferred the art of physical combat, and at the age of thirteen his parents sought his own instructor, one who taught him proficiencies in ranged and close combat. He was decent with a bow, but nothing special.
Where he excelled, however, was in swords and daggers. Few could move as quickly as he could, in spite of his long limbs, and it was generally accepted that one would do well not to cross him. His title, The Serene Silver Star, came from the flashing of his blades in the sunlight, and his unsettling calmness that often made people wish he would simply be angry.
He harbored a fear of water from the moment he understood what water was. The vastness of the ocean was unsettling to him. Its unending nature made his head hurt and caused an existential dread. But Rei, not being one to shy away from his fears, resolved one day, at the age of fourteen, to wade out into the sea. It wasn’t too bad; the sand and the breaking waves moving over his toes was actually pleasant, and so he waded further and further. He was about chest-deep when he found the rip current.
All at once, his legs were swept out from under him, and, having no real concept of swimming to begin with, began to flail helplessly as he was swept out to sea. It didn’t take long for the current to drag him downwards, as well. There had been no one with him, no one around to see, though in retrospect he wondered how much help they could have been. Through his terror, as water filled his lungs, he cursed the one time he’d gone against his better judgment. But as his vision narrowed and as his arms tired, the flash of scales and wafting fur in the sunlight blinded him, and that was the last he saw of anything.
He came to on the beach, right where he had begun, coughing up water and retching. There was no one around, but he recalled the scales and the fur, and for no particular reason the idea of a kirin appeared in his mind. It was this supernatural being that had saved him, he knew, and it was then he adopted this animal as a symbol of his own importance, for why would such a thing save him, if not for his necessity to the world?
But, kirin or no, Rei was made quite aware of his mortality, and thus would begin the trajectory of his life.
He took to books, learning all he could about immortality and the ability to recapture it for himself. This wasn’t an unusual preoccupation for Altmer, in particular; the only thing that sets one immortality-seeking mer from another is the level of determination, and the willingness to make compromises. Rei was on the extreme end.
He first began to pray to Clavicus Vile, careful not to outright summon him on the first of Morning Star for many years. His reasoning was that, perhaps by showing deference and patience, he might be seen as more valuable than any other mortal being. He knew well the semantic games played by the Prince, and he knew of the many ways a wish for immortality could be granted – he wouldn’t have been the first, after all. And, after all, Vile was the Prince of serenity, and who better to curry favor than the man who had won the title for just that virtue?
Finally, he was ready. On the first of Morning Star, the year of his twenty-fifth birthday, he invoked
the name of his hopeful patron. Vile, obliged to appear on his summoning date, appeared to him, showing a promising curiosity.
“So it’s you, my patient little disciple,” he crooned. “I know what you’ve summoned me for, something many a precious Altmer just like yourself have hoped for.”
“My Lord,” Rei answered, “as you know, I’m a great admirer of your work. Few can engage in such trickery with such a smooth hand.”
“Trying to butter me up, eh? I rather like it; far too many of you simply show up and make demands. Perhaps I wouldn’t feel such a need to play my games if more mortals called me their lord.”
Rei smirked at the languid sarcasm that tripped beneath the Daedra’s words. “I assure you, I live only to serve.”
“Well, you do leave me soul gems,” he granted. “Nice ones.”
“And I would give you an endless supply, if you should will it.”
Vile laughed once, quietly. “I could always use more servants. Proper ones. Willing ones. Let us strike a deal, then, shall we?”
“Name your price, my Lord.”
“Your purpose on Nirn is to keep me happy. Or it will be, should you accept. You would be as the Winged Twilights are to that stuffy Azura. In exchange, you have your immortality.”
“I would be honored,” Rei answered quickly. “Anything you would ask of me.”
Vile grinned. “So be it.”
A searing pain bloomed in his chest and spread throughout his body, and he fell to his knees, retching violently against the pain. He knew he was screaming, but he couldn’t hear the sound. His teeth ached viciously, and it felt as if his spine was rearranging itself.
When the pain subsided, Rei lay on his side, curled into the fetal position, shaking violently. His gums throbbed, and he pressed his tongue against the back of his front teeth, discovering that both his eye teeth had deformed into fangs, and all at once he was aware of something strange at the base of his spine. Reaching back, he felt a tail.
“What,” he gasped, “what did you do to me?”
“Why, I took your soul,” Vile said sweetly. “You know how I love them. But I couldn’t have you running about stealing others while yours stayed put! That would be unfair.”
Rei realized now that he did feel strange. Something was indeed missing, something ineffable and profound.
“Besides, you should be able to gather more, this way, without that nasty old conscience getting in the
“But what about all this? The tail…my teeth…”
“And your hair, and your eyes.”
“What happened to them?”
“You’ll find a mirror eventually, I’m sure. You’ve had it far too easy gathering souls. Blending into society, sneaking up on those poor people. I did tell you you would be as a daedric servant, didn’t I? Now there will be no mistaking you for what you are. My soulless little murderer.”
Rei knew somehow that he should have been feeling incensed, but there was nothing but a blank weight.
“Keep the souls coming,” Vile said. “Keep them coming, or your mortality will return, and with a vengeance. But do not think you aren’t precious to me. I name you Rei Ginsei, devourer of souls.”
“Thank you, my Lord,” he said in a disturbingly automatic way. “Will I always feel like this?”
“Like what, precious?”
“Like I’m trapped in a void.”
“Well, I’ve never had a soul of my own,” Vile chirped. “There are some mortals who have said that the soul is what you make of it. I don’t know about any of that; it’s far too tiresome a subject. I suppose you’ll just have to find out!”
Without a moment’s hesitation, and before Rei could say another word, the Prince had vanished.
Stay tuned, for soon we will be meeting the mysterious “kirin”!
In the Novel/Anime Vampire Hunter D
Rei Ginsei’s character is based mostly off of his appearance in the 1985 anime, both in terms of literal appearance and behavior.
Outfit from the 1985 adaptation of Vampire Hunter D
VHD is based in the future, combining elements of horror, fantasy, and science fiction. In essence, vampires (called Nobles) take over the world in the early 2000’s, and incite nuclear war, scorching the earth. Eventually villages begin to re-emerge, along with an economy. There are elements of old world technology (horses and buggies are the main mode of transportation, for example, though there are also equine cyborgs), combined with futuristic technology designed mainly to fend off threats, those threats consisting mainly of mutants. Nobles are a dying breed, and humanity has finally reached a point at which reclamation of earth is somewhat possible.
Humanoid mutants are common, Rei Ginsei being one of these. He is basically indistinguishable from any normal human, which is a nearly completely unique advantage, though he possesses the ability to warp space around his torso – his literal torso, this ability does not cover arms, legs, feet, hand, head, or neck. This is a defensive ability primarily, and it saves him more than once, as when the titular character D attempts to stab him in the gut. As soon as the blade touched skin, Rei was able to twist the space around him so that the blade impaled D, instead.
In the anime, he is your basic villain/lackey, who is serving the main villain, the powerful vampire Count Magnus Lee, motivated by the notion that if he does well, Lee will grant him immortality in the form of vampirism. He has designs on the Count’s daughter Ramika, taking her abuse, secure in the knowledge that once he is made a Noble, she will be his, and they will rule together. As you might imagine, this doesn’t work out. When Lee laughs in his face at the notion that Rei would have honestly believed such a thing, he “turns good”, only to have Lee explode his head in a spectacular display of gore.
In the novel, he is much, much more sinister. He is described as an Asian youth of no specified ethnicity, about sixteen years old (in the anime it’s implied that he’s at least forty, probably much older), and quite possibly the most beautiful man in the world. Few women can resist his smile, which of course he uses to his advantage. But beauty is as beauty does, and he is primarily known as the leader of a gang of violent marauders known as the Fiend Corps. They’re your typical anarchic type of gang, asking protection money, murdering indiscriminately, etc. Rei himself is known for being particularly cruel, and has a penchant for raping women/allowing them to BE raped. In one scene he actually saves the heroine Doris from such a fate, and tells her in no uncertain terms that she’s lucky she’s pretty or he’d have just let it happen.
And then he rapes her later on.
So. My Rei is not based on that Rei. That Rei is pretty goddamned evil.