Duke Malphas d'Xuvadon is an archdemon who is the Lord of the Duchy of Northern Yamato and the leader of the Northern Horde in the Third Age. He is among the youngest demons to reach such a high position, and he is very ambitious and arrogant, even going so far as to try to make Grand Duchess Nhrakate d'Zarnagon acknowledge him as a potential mate. He has sent Dreadlord Leraje Thanadar to conquer Libaterra but his arrogance has recently caused him to be tricked into becoming a servant of the Eastern Horde when Nina Heeate L'andariel put a geas on him.
Malphas belongs to the Xuvadon Clan which used to rule the Demon Realm before the House of Zarnagon took over. He grew up thinking that it is his destiny to take back what was rightfully his ancestors' and to crush the usurping d'Zarnagons. With this in mind he readily attacked any demon that stood in his way, and he devoured them, gaining more strength in the process. After doing this for a few centuries, he was finally ready to become the head of his clan, a rare feat for one so young. Malphas also worshipped Yurius as an idol, because he shared Yurius's rage and omnicidal tendencies to kill anything that moved.
It was around this time when Malphas noticed a young demon, Leraje Thanadar, who was surprisingly strong. Seeing potential in this demon, he took him under his wing and let him devour some of his prey. This proved to be wise, because Leraje showed unquestionable loyalty to Malphas. It was unclear whether this was out of gratitude (usually a foreign concept to demons) or if Leraje was just afraid of Malphas's power and wanted to use Malphas's generosity to grow stronger.
Malphas and Leraje began gathering more like-minded demons around themselves, and their clans grew into what would eventually be known as the Northern Horde. They were even more bloodthirsty than the average demon, and many more civilized demons like d'Zarnagons considered them to be mindless beasts. This only angered Malphas and Leraje who began devouring more and more demons, growing stronger in the process.
Time moved on, and eventually Mardük, the God of Chaos, was released from his prison, and he opened the portal to the Demon Realm. The demons eagerly poured out, ready to do what their master commanded, and Malphas's legions came along. Malphas liked slaughtering and devouring the helpless people of Yamato, although he was disappointed that there was no stronger opponent around.
Malphas cheered on when Mardük and Cardia began a vicious duel, but was surprised when he saw how the Godslayer appeared and devoured the two gods before disappearing somewhere. The demons, including Malphas, realized that they did not have to serve Mardük anymore now that Mardük was dead, and the ancient hatreds burst into flame as they attack one another. Malphas had gathered his strength throughout decades and centuries,though, so he managed to secure his place in Northern Yamato after a lot of fighting.
Aftermath of DestructionEdit
Malphas became the Duke of the Northern Duchy of Yamato after the Cataclysm, and he appointed Leraje as his count and Dreadlord. The Northern Horde did not have a capital unlike the other hordes, so they kept wandering around the countryside, killing, devouring and raping anything they came across. When they did not find any Yamatians to kill, they attacked other hordes. In essence they lived for war.
Despite their best efforts they were not able to purge Northern Yamato of all Yamatians, though, but they were certain that in time they would rule supreme and defeat rebel groups such as the Akai Tora. Malphas went so far as to actually make deals with some lesser beings such as humans, elves and dwarves and drafted them into his service, and he found many loyal allies from people such as Distreyd Thanadar XIII, Flavius Severus and Nobuo Iwasaki who wanted to become stronger. The duke's horde was growing fast.
Malphas also sent Dreadlord Leraje to participate in the Night of Blood to get rid of the Dreadlord of the fifth, Central Horde whose master Omaroch d'Zarnagon had been missing for years. The Dreadlord was dealt with, and Malphas took one quarter of the Central Horde, which had fallen into chaos after its Dreadlord's disappearance, into his growing army.
Malphas was not content with just fighting randomly, though. He wanted to actually conquer something, which was hard to do because the other hordes were no pushovers especially after absorbing parts of the former fifth horde. He realized that the only option left was to proceed northwards. He ordered Leraje to send scouting parties to the Libaterran desert in the north, but few if any of the scouts returned.
The duke realized that the desert tribes around the city of Vanna were no pushovers either and that he actually had to devise a strategy to beat lesser beings after all. He realized that he could kill two birds with one stone: he could proceed into Libaterra and have all the fun conquering it, and he could also use this land as a means of persuading Grand Duchess Nhrakate d'Zarnagon to marry him. That way his horde would grow stronger and his clan would reclaim its earlier position as leaders of all demons if he became the new Grand Duke.
A Game of DeceptionEdit
- "Once Libaterra is mine, the Grand Duchess will have no other choice than to marry me and make me the Grand Duke of Yamato. Then I can dispose of the other archdemons and finally reign supreme over Yamato and the entire world!"
After handing over his annual report to the Grand Duchess in Kageshima, Malphas explained his plan to conquer Libaterra and hand that land to the Grand Duchess as a wedding gift. The Grand Duchess mocked this idea, but she let Malphas try the plan out albeit with an ultimatum: if Malphas failed, he would be devoured instantly, and some other high-level demon would take his place as the next Lord of the North. This infuriated Malphas who nevertheless swallowed his pride and left the throne room.
Malphas immediately contacted his aide, Distreyd XIII, and ordered him to gather the Chaos Dwarves and lead them north where Leraje's legions would already be waiting. Malphas himself would leave the overall command of the Northern Horde's armies to Leraje for the time being, because he was busy setting his other plans in motion in and around Kageshima.
A Crimson DawnEdit
- "I just want to let you know that His Grace has set his sights on Libaterra and that he has sent His Lordship Leraje to prepare the forces of the Northern Horde. He wants you to know that there's nothing any of you can do anymore. You'll either bow down before the might of His Grace's Horde or be destroyed."
- —Vassago, delivering Malphas's message to Omaroch d'Zarnagon
Malphas's minions discovered partly demonic spies from the Hisakata Clan who were still loyal to Omaroch. Since he had figured out Omaroch was working for the Magicracy of Alent and thus had betrayed other demons, he thought of sending Omaroch a message to taunt him. The idea of angering a more powerful demon intrigued Malphas, and he proceeded to first rape the Hisakata women and then devour their hearts. After this act he gave the heads to his horde's herald Vassago and ordered him to deliver the heads to Omaroch.
- "I don't really care about your army or what it's doing, nor what you plan to do in Libaterra, but I do care about fealty. You shall bow down to the might of the East, and we shall let you continue living and doing as you wish. Yet the final power lies...with us. When my sister returns, her empire shall be ready to welcome her home. In the meantime, I shall rule in her place. And...I know what you want, and I can get it for you."
- —Nina Heeate L'andariel to Malphas
Malphas received reports from Leraje that the invasion of Southern Libaterra had proceeded as planned. All of Libaterra south of Vanna was now under the Northern Horde's control. This piece of news pleased Malphas: soon he would conquer the entire Libaterra and then the Grand Duchess could do nothing but submit to him.
However, Malphas's dreams were shattered when he was approached in Kageshima by Duke Hepnaz L'invrad of the Southern Horde who explained that he had already taken action against Malphas's remaining forces in Yamato and that he now effectively held Malphas as his prisoner. While Malphas came to realize the gravity of this sudden development, he had to witness another surprise as Hepnaz's seemingly loyal Dreadlady Gin'vel killed Hepnaz in front of his eyes.
It turned out that Gin'vel was in fact a disguised Nina Heeate L'andariel, sister of Duchess Vaetris L'andariel of the Eastern Horde, and had posed as Hepnaz's lieutenant to gain his trust. She used Malphas's confusion to her advantage and tricked him to kiss her ring which triggered a fealty spell which would force Malphas to either obey the Eastern Horde or die. In a matter of few minutes the Eastern Horde had gained control of both the Southern Horde and the Northern Horde, and Malphas could do nothing to stop it from happening. What angered him the most was that he had been tricked by a demoness out of all people.
- "You're the worthless one here, thinking that you can stop the inevitable. The unification of Yamato is at hand. Soon the hordes will become one and they'll be unleashed upon the material world once more."
- —Malphas to Omaroch d'Zarnagon
When Omaroch returned to Kageshima to assassinate his mother, Grand Duchess Nhrakate d'Zarnagon, he was ambushed by Malphas in the throne room. The two archdemons had a brief but brutal duel, and Omaroch ultimately lost because of Malphas's brutish determination and Nhrakate's psychological taunts which broke his spirit.
Malphas wasn't happy about Omaroch referring to him as a lapdog, but he knew the archdemon was right. He was essentially serving two demonesses' needs: Nhrakate's and Nina's. He still had an army to command, but he was only a pawn in two strong female's game, which annoyed him a great deal because he felt males should be superior. Nevertheless he had had the satisfaction of defeating his rival Omaroch after his assassins had failed to do so, and he could not boast this fact to his troops once he joined them in the Libaterran frontlines.
The Point of No ReturnEdit
More info later.
A Cry in the DarkEdit
- "I've already broken your son, and soon I'll have your grandsons as well, twisting them into my image. Then my victory over you will be complete. There are things you don't know about me, things even Ronove and the other members of the Four have yet to discover. Soon all of you will come to realize who's truly the one in charge."
- "Empty threats, that's all you have. I was once full of anger like you...until I found Delora. If I hadn't found her, I might've ended up like you."
- "Cling to the pathetic dreams of a life you've lost. Your family won't be coming back...they've all betrayed you, abandoned you. Enjoy these fleeting moments in darkness. That's all you'll have left before you meet your end."
- —Malphas and Omaroch d'Zarnagon
More info later.
Aliases and NicknamesEdit
- Another name Malphas is known by. It refers to his ability to devour--and destroy--his opposition utterly and mercilessly. Some rumours say that it actually refers to Malphas's true, demonic form.
- Lord of the North
- An honorary title given to Malphas after he formed the Duchy of Northern Yamato.
- Your Grace
- Malphas's servants use this title when they address him.
Malphas prefers appearing as a human. Some say it's aesthetic reasons while others claim that staying in such "lesser" form he manages to block some of his power and thus enjoy battles more when he can give his weaker opponents a chance to strike back. Few if any have ever seen Malphas's true, demonic form, but it is said to be truly abysmal with a huge appetite, hence the use of the name Devourer.
When he is in human form, Malphas is tall and has a rather muscular build. He has a clean face with long, blueish hair that resembles a mane. His eyes grow brightly in red, and he is always seen clad in a crimson armor that every member of the Northern Horde wears.
Personality and TraitsEdit
- "Don't test my patience, slave! Do you want to share the fate of your late father, the previous Distreyd Thanadar?"
- —Malphas, to Distreyd Thanadar XIII
Malphas is extremely arrogant. It might be because he is among the youngest archdemons and because he was nearly invincible on battlefields. He does know who is stronger than he is, but he tends to underestimate what he consideres to be lesser beings such as dwarves, elves and men. He can be suave at one moment and explode in a fit of rage just a moment later, so it is always dangerous to hang around Malphas. He is not as fearless as many think because he wants to accomplish something before he dies, but he hides this fact from most people, including his closest subordinates.
Powers and AbilitiesEdit
Few have seen Malphas using his full powers, because he dominates most opponents easily. There are few beings apart from gods that can challenge him to a duel and survive, and some rumours say that he has even faced an entire legion of mid-level demons alone and survived. Whatever Malphas's powers are, they are surely tremendous or else he would not have reached his current position as an archdemon and leader of a horde of thousands of vicious demons.
Distreyd Thanadar XIIIEdit
Distreyd XIII acts as a personal aide to Malphas. Although Malphas treats Distreyd like any other lesser being, there is still something between the two that is hard to describe. Maybe it is because Malphas saw then-young Distreyd defending a castle valiantly against Malphas's superior forces, or maybe Distreyd being the High Cleric of Mardük has something to do with it. Distreyd has proved to be a useful servant, so Malphas has let him live and has even granted him some autonomy which Distreyd has eagerly accepted. It is clear, though, that this is a master-servant relationship and that Malphas will always be in charge.
Some almost consider the relationship between Malphas and his Dreadlord Leraje as a relationship between brothers or even one between father and son. Whatever the case may be, Malphas sees many traits of himself in Leraje and is pleased by the relatively young demon's progress. The two trust each other, maybe because they have a similar nature, and oddly enough Leraje has never dreamed of usurping Malphas's position. Maybe it is because Malphas is so much powerful, or perhaps there is some respect involved too. Malphas does not grant any special privileges to Leraje and expects him to do his duties well enough or face punishment. Currently Malphas is trusting Leraje enough to give him full command of the armies of the Northern Horde, and Leraje is all too eager to please his master and conquer Libaterra as proof of his worthiness.
Malphas's great plan was to invade Libaterra and hand it over to Grand Duchess Nhrakate so that she'd accept his hand in marriage and he'd become the Grand Duke of Yamato. Malphas doesn't particularly desire Nhrakate who he sees as an old relic, so she's more as a means to an end for him to become the supreme overlord of the demon hordes. After Nina's intentions became clear, however, Malphas has had to reconsider his plan and how to deal with the colliding plots of Nina and Nhrakate.
Nina Heeate L'andarielEdit
Malphas both despises and desires Nina, the demoness who outwitted him and Hepnaz. He hates the idea that a female out of all people beat him when he was off guard, and he intends to return the favour if he can figure out how to remove the geas which Nina has placed on him. He can't deny, however, that Nina is attractive, and he likes her cunning. Whether his feelings for her are genuine or if Nina's powers are affecting his mind somehow remain unclear, though.
Malphas sees himself as someone who has already proven his point to Omaroch whom he sees as a traitor to the demon cause. As far as he is concerned, he will become the lord of all demons and surpass Omaroch and everyone else in power. Omaroch sees Malphas as Nhrakate's lapdog who has nothing else to cling to but hatred anymore.
Malphas and Ronove began a strained relationship after Ronove became Malphas's new lieutenant. He saw Ronove as a useful pawn and constantly put him in distressing situations (such as forcing him to confront his old master Omaroch) to see how he'd react, but so far Ronove has passed his tests with flying colours. Malphas can't deny that Ronove did hand Vanna over to the Northern Horde even though he had a chance to help the Alliance, but he can't help but think what other motives Ronove has and whether Ronove has forgiven the archdemons for the events that transpired during the Night of Blood.
- Distreyd Thanadar XIII
- Leraje Thanadar
- Nhrakate d'Zarnagon
- Nina Heeate L'andariel
- Northern Horde
- Omaroch d'Zarnagon
- Ronove Thanadar