Esredes is a former Temple Knight turned heretic. After an incident with dragon’s blood from his childhood came to light and he was nearly killed as a result, he turned against Ishgard and became devoted to winning the Dragonsong War for the heretics by either taking over or destroying Ishgard. Now fueled by a mixture of vengeance and the need to liberate his people, Esredes continues to press on after years of fighting, refusing to give up the fight no matter how much it takes his toll on him.
Nominated to take Iceheart’s place by his own people after the climax of the war, Esredes was later officially pardoned by Aymeric and allowed to return to his original home under the condition of adhering to the new law and government. In the wake of the ashes of the war and his movement, Esredes continues to operate in a delicate balance between law and necessity, helping the new Ishgard while being well-prepared for a potential resurrection of the war. Despite his many doubts about his own abilities, he has taken up the mantle given to him of Her successor- continuing to convert people to his side and ideology and carefully watch and infiltrate ongoings in Ishgard.
Perhaps there will be salvation in the ashes, or perhaps there is naught to do but delay the inevitable oblivion. One thing is for certain for the man: the war will never truly be over until he can make it so…. Or be forced to enact its resurrection.His blog is here.
Serious | Determined | Judgemental | Ambitious | Selectively Confident | Manipulative | Driven | Irritable | Reserved | Narrow-minded | Dramatic | Cunning | Calculated | Cautious | Snarky | Vicious | Selectively Hostile | Motivational | Protective | Selectively Empathetic | Selectively Compassionate | Selectively Polite | Selectively Blunt | Leading | Logical | Sadistic | Realist | Intense | Loyal | Selectively Deceitful | Hateful | Selectively Dense | Analytical | Introverted | Selectively Delusional | Self Sacrificial
Esredes is a person for whom much is said or whispered about, often conflicting in nature. For many people, he is a dangerous, exploitative force of malevolence that no one seems to know how to stop and put down for good, an individual that one should stay away from or else they will either perish or be warped into another evildoer like himself. Yet for others, he is an unsung hero, a caring soul that heals the minds and hearts of people he passes, who many defend and stand by at all costs. But no matter what exactly is said about him, one thing is clear about the man: he is a driven individual with a cause in mind he will never forsake, wielding himself as an engraved, fancy blade with a sharp and rough edge against the opponents of his life’s mission, until such time as a blade finally takes to the fate of all its kind, to break in half and be discarded without a second thought.
At first glance, Esredes typically appears as a serious and reserved individual, often even standoffish to a degree. He usually starts off with anywhere from a simple and sometimes indifferent politeness to a neutral form of a speech, and even at times an outright distinctly unfriendly demeanor. By default, he is someone who trends to using fewer words and prefers being somewhat blunt and to the point with a tone that is not particularly emotional, but this can shift to going on for several sentences at a time and even monologuing with much more passion in his voice the moment something strikes his emotional chord or brings up something he knows much about. He isn’t opposed to conversation by default, but his sociability often depends on how much a person is of interest to him, also typically indicated by his tone taking on more emotional inflections. Regardless of his level of conversational effort, his noble upbringing ensures that he speaks with some level of higher vocabulary, but his inability to fully pick up the grace that comes with it results in some of his speech coming across as awkwardly phrased, or when angered, partially foregoing this pattern in favor of much more swearing. Beyond conversation, the air that Esredes carries around himself has a certain powerful, elegant and regal feeling- regardless of how plain and ordinary he chooses to dress- yet weighs heavy with an unmistakable feeling of tenseness, shrouding itself in mystery all around him. Just beyond the fog and faint to the eye are the deep and dark depths within the man- but to approach them is to risk falling straight in, and perhaps some things are best left undiscovered.
A soldier at his core, Esredes wields himself equally in mind and body, well equipped for either physical or mental warfare in whatever battle manifests day to day. His mind operates primarily in the medium of logical thinking, strategy, and a realistic outlook. Whether it is simple everyday life or a matter of life and death, Esredes prefers to have at least some sort of plan, and often evaluates his actions to figure out what is the safest, most efficient way to go about them, when to and when not to take a risk on something or someone. Years of operation in this mindset have allowed Esredes to most of the time end up as the person in the room who comes to the best plan of action the quickest, or at all, but it has also lead him to assess situations and people as threats in ways that cause him to behave abnormally at times, assume and react before he has enough information to go off of, or be controlled by paranoia. Esredes almost always takes situations more seriously than everyone else, and will always assume the role of responsibility when there is not a clear person elected to, having no hesitations about immediately shutting down anything that doesn’t meet his standards of safe or effective, no matter the social or emotional costs it has. He keeps his own clear standards for himself in all areas of mental performance from the strategic to the moral, and is reputable for being headstrong and stubborn in all of the ideals he holds in his own head. His secondary modes of thinking are those of emotion and negotiation with others, both of which are more hit and miss in nature. On one hand, he is skilled at using his more primary mode of logic and reasoning to sway people to his words and hopefully even to his side, and is able to fester doubt in peoples’ mind about the nature of themselves or their situation to trigger a realization. He can read and manage someone’s emotions quickly and effectively, defuse tense or hostile situations, and calm others down with effective communication. But he is just as likely to be at a loss for how someone is feeling and how to manage it, or say the exact wrong thing to make a situation worse. Depending on how a situation plays out, Esredes is either a clever and cunning strategist and negotiator… or a clueless and dense, socially ineffective fool.
Yet all of Esredes’ constructed ways of mental operation, walls, and carrying himself melt away in certain circumstances, revealing the core, unfiltered person beneath everything. Esredes’ purest form of self is that of a perfectly ordinary, average person forced to use what he has to appear and live as much more. When he cannot be calculated or clever, he reverts to the only somewhat about average intelligence person he truly is that doesn’t actually possess the traits of extended higher thinking one would expect from his position. When he decides not to be serious, he instead either becomes a playful and amused, more snarky person, paired with frequent smirking and more remarks than usual, or he reveals a more dorky part of himself that is endearingly a bit slow to grasp some cues people give to him, and says things either intentionally or unintentionally more goofy in nature. Regardless of the perception others have of him and that which he projects, Esredes operates on the simple idea that he is but the same as any other individual- not a driving, singular force that alone can turn a tide, but merely a small part of a much larger whole, an easily replaceable tool.
This reality does not stop Esredes’ unwavering determination and drive in life from being motivated by his need to put himself behind a cause higher than him and contribute to what he views as bettering the world. While many would do this for moral purposes, and he is no exception, for him it is also a matter of simple practicality. Anything less and more self-centered would be boring and unfulfilling and leave him restless. He puts his cause and his allies all above himself, and is more than willing to die for either. Combined with his undying loyalty, this leads to it being extremely difficult to put a stop to him once he is set out on a task in the name of his greater good. He doesn’t hesitate to save those he perceives as in peril, even if it means occasionally being fooled by a trap, and generally keeps his word and deals he makes with others. In addition, Esredes is a proficient leader to his people, preferring to foster a relationship based on trust in his capabilities over raw authority and drive his subordinates to become their best selves, even if it means taking the time to check in on them and ensure they are in the best condition to continue on and listen to him. In the same vein, he is willing to do what needs to be done, even if it is unpleasant and hard, to save others from having to do so instead.
But his definition of what should be done… does not quite match up with a lot of others’. Esredes sorts people into categories- categories that dictate if someone is worthy of any consideration before being killed or not. And those who fail to meet his standards of consideration- such as people who are too self-centered or contribute nothing to the world or those who harm and destroy it and other people- are people he will kill without a second thought, often times even taking sadistic enjoyment in the act and believing he has simply offed a lesser being that is wasting space with its defectiveness. True to the form he gave himself, Esredes does not shy away from enjoying violence and fighting to a certain extent and being brutal when there is time and reason for it. While he keeps his calm and calculated manner about in fighting for the most part, the right combination of events loosening his mental restraints under too much pressure can plunge him into a state of mind pertaining to his more inherently chaotic side, a repressed spirit of his personality that controlled him in much of his childhood characterized by rash, destructive, and impulsive behavior. While in this state, Esredes will lose all of his calculated and effective execution in favor of hyperfocusing in on a single target no matter how wounded he is and trying to destroy it entirely, leaving him vulnerable to being wounded more and making his actions much more unpredictable. Fortunately, it doesn’t take much to snap him out of this state and allow him to regain his former composure. Even beyond the battlefield, Esredes has a somewhat selective form of empathy that only applies to people he deems complete enough to deserve it, and he has a strong tendency for manipulation, not opposed to stooping to deception, psychological tactics, and guilt tripping and gaslighting to get people to do as he needs, though he has more limitations depending on how much he genuinely cares for a person. Without those limitations and a particular distaste for a target, however, Esredes is prone to becoming emotionally and verbally abusive when he believes a person deserves it. He is even capable of inflicting harsh psychological warfare on others and breaking apart their very reality for his own warped sense of justice and pleasure. While not incapable of feeling remorse and trying to make up for his actions later if he learns he has distributed his twisted sense of justice unfairly, he otherwise holds none and even a lot of pleasure about tearing someone apart physically and mentally.
Even without resorting to these measures, Esredes has plenty of other ways to appear generally unpleasant. He is very judgemental by nature, often looking down on people and seeing their flaws before their good traits and holding them in lower regard until they prove themselves worthy of a higher tier of consideration. He will often knowingly or unknowingly talk down to people, and explain things to them as if they don’t already know them or as if they were almost a child. This narrow-minded mentality of his is very unreliable and often too black and white, putting people in boxes and jumping to conclusions without proper evidence. It also contributes to a situational and mild form of arrogance manifesting in the man. Esredes also doesn’t hesitate when there are no consequences to let someone know he dislikes him, and openly insult them while having fun with it. A lifetime of letting hate fester in the black part of his heart has made it all too easy for him to give in and let it consume his actions.
But there are two sides to every coin, and Esredes is no different. When he finds people in his good graces and worthy, he is just as capable of building people up as he would be tearing them apart, and quite likes encouraging others and building their self esteem, allowing them to see their positive traits and teaching them about what they’re missing. He is willing to give out love and affection to people who seem to need it in hopes of a return in the form of loyalty to him, and he can be surprisingly patient, kind, and even tolerant of the stranger and less effective parts of people, even understanding and a good listener on top of it. He has a particular soft spot for people who are abused, downtrodden, and vulnerable, and feels compelled to build them up into better people. After all, when you see a clearly broken thing in front of you, is it not common sense to fix it? Esredes’ inconsistent emotion reading ability also makes him capable of seeing into peoples’ issues easily and psychoanalyzing them, and he is blunt enough to tell people what their problems are and offer them advice and help. In the same territory, Esredes is a chronic worrier, unable to stop himself from always being concerned about his loved ones and their well being. Past a certain level of bonding, there is little he won’t do for someone he cares about. However, he will not hesitate to resort to weaponizing his affection and guilt tripping when he feels someone is taking advantage of or trampling on his kindness, or even falling right into verbally abusive territory if he feels particularly violated.
But beyond the man’s great capability for both destruction and salvation, beyond his calculated and structured mind or fallen irrationality, and beyond the simple person at his core, lie the depths of a dark abyss left to fester for multiple decades until it became but the most ordinary thing. Esredes views himself as nothing but a weapon, the perfect soldier. And to be the perfect soldier, he believes he was carefully constructed from the beginning with an intentionally hollow center, lacking the true humanity of an ordinary person in order to be an acceptable disposable body and not be tempted into being anything more. In addition, he is not entirely lacking self awareness about his tendency to be perceived in a negative light, and believes he is meant to be an undesirable individual that attracts hatred in order to absorb it so others don’t have to. He has resigned himself to the fate of a soldier’s death on the battlefield from a relatively young age, and fights on until this inevitable fate take holds of him.
Yet once the war ended, all of this went from being a simple truth to breaking down and overflowing into his regular mind, leading to greater difficulties in maintaining his usual composed and together mindset. In addition to believing he is a complete failure for not winning the war, he now questions if a worn down weapon has any place in a world that asks him to adapt roles he is ill-suited for, or if he should seek out another way to complete his fate in the wake of the ash…
But be it towards his own, inevitable destruction or a hypothetical reevaluation and rebirthing of his very being, Esredes will always press on and keep going. For the sake of his cause or people, nothing short of death can truly stop Esredes from follwoing the path he refuses to abandon.
For a soldier must live to fight, until his very last breath is past.
Esredes stands a little under average male Elezen height at 6'0, and is more widely built than the in game model. He resembles a Gridanian Elezen better than an Ishgardian one, with his light brown skin and crimson hair, swept back behind his head and forming into tips behind it. His eyes resemble a fire with their orange coloring, and when he is experiencing intense emotions, they often feel as if there is one burning within. In relation to the in game model, it should be noted he lacks the widow's peak, and the hair in front of the ears. His appearance is often geared to intimidation, and he gives off a distinct powerful, but uneasy aura. When not in his own version of the typical haubergeon uniform, he usually keeps his outfits relatively simple and not attracting attention, save for the ever present shade of red- but traces of his former highborn fashion sense still remain. He also keeps his sword and sheath on him in most situations.
His second form is that of a red and golden quadruped wyvern, standing tall at nine foot five and stretching outwards to eleven foot seven, though he occasionally takes on an in between form, in which he maintains his bipedal size and shape but with all of his draconic features intact.Despite the resemblance, he is not in any way related to Jannequinard.
Esredes was born into a noble Ishgardian family, and was raised on conservative and strict values, told he must uphold the dignity and honor of the family. However, as he developed, he began to exhibit behavioral issues and this eventually caused his family to try and hide him away from the public in their shame as they tried to get his behavior under control.
As his parents struggled to deal with the eldest child, elsewhere in Ishgard lied a small group of common folk with an agenda against the elite and the system, who were hatching a plan to bring the entire system into question, by slipping dragon’s blood into the drink of a few select elites at a party and letting the uproar dismantle the rest of their family and bring the entire elite under fire. The moody and impatient young Rosemond kid was selected as one of these targets, as not only was a kid an easy target, it would bring much more backfire if a child was killed. Though the actual process itself was a success, the group was then killed in a violent standoff a week later during another criminal act, thus letting their scheme die with them.
Unaware of all of this, when Esredes began to experience the effects of the blood the next day, he was full of panic and terror, thinking he had been cursed, but he did not tell anyone about it. He was old enough to somewhat understand this would be taken badly, and kept it hidden and never tried to experiment with his ability to shift. Hiding this only increased his behavioral problems as well, and eventually peers began to turn away from him for fear of being brought into trouble, leaving him isolated. His parents eventually stepped in and forced him to behave at age fifteen after an incident warranted it being the last straw. After some resistance, he finally conceded and began to behave like a young adult willing to take responsibility for himself. From there, his family and social life returned to stability.
He later joined the Ishgardian military upon reaching adulthood, as it had been his dream for a while to fight, and he was confident in his ability to hide his secret and still become a war hero. He began to win back family honor by becoming a formidable soldier and advancing in the ranks until he was near the top. However, one day during a battle, he was knocked off a cliff ledge to what would have been certain death if he had not shifted wings and glided to a lower ledge for safety, passing it off as a miracle survival. He thought no one had saw it when they rescued him later, but when a group of people showed up with weapons to surround his location later on, he learned very quickly someone must have said something. While he attempted voicing his innocence, it fell on deaf ears, and so he was forced to use the military skills and strategies he had gained, suffering several injuries and injuring several people to escape.
Now on the run and lost without anywhere to go to, Esredes continued fleeing, aiming to make his way towards Ul’dah. He was discovered again in the process and suffered much worse injuries escaping from his pursuers, but was found by a band of heretics and taken for medical treatment. After being told their side of the story, he reluctantly agreed to help them fight against Ishgard, if they would help him achieve something. This deal was then fulfilled, and so he began to embrace his dragon side and become loyal to the heretic cause. He has since become a powerful member in the group and continues to lead sieges against Ishgard.
After enduring countless hardships and countless witnesses of his people being slaughtered, the war finally reached its turning point and Esredes was left in the dust as it spiraled far beyond the heretic's control. He held down the faction after the death of his beloved leader, and was planning to disappear from Eorzea entirely as the war ended- only to be approached by an acquaintance and informed he had been pardoned by the new leader, legally able to return to Ishgard as a normal citizen.
After much deliberation and hesitance, he opted to accept this offer, not so much for himself, but for the sake of his people who would do the same, and once purchasing a house in Foundation on money borrowed from a few highborn ally sources, he remains in the city-state working as a negotiator between it and dragons, all while dealing with frequent surges of depression.
Impart onto the collector the contents of your heart, and I will take it into my gentle hands…
On the day I crumble to ash and scatter to the wind,
I never had a place in your heart.
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