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Phantom_(MÄR)

Phantom (MÄR)

Phantom (ファントム, Fantomu) is a fictional character and major antagonist in the manga and anime series MÄR. He plays one of the leading roles in the series' main antagonist faction Chess Pieces.

Background

Phantom was born thirty years before the main part of the series takes place in the magical island nation of Caldia within MÄR-Heaven. Phantom, at age ten, found a mysterious door while exploring through Caldia's Floating Castle, inside of which he discovered Caldia's Orb, a magical orb in which was sealed the consciousnesses of the world's greatest evils. Seduced by the orb, he began to visit nearly every day, until one day he was discovered by the guards. By Caldia's law, Phantom's parents would have to kill him. Unwilling to do so, however, they committed suicide (by hanging in the manga, and a knife orginially intended for their son's murder in the anime). Because of this, Phantom, having no other relatives, was imprisoned for life.

10 years later, while Phantom was rotting in prison, Diana came to him and with her beauty, the dream of conquering the world, the abhorrence towards deservingly inferior humans, easily made a faithful follower out of him. Together they stole 798 ÄRMs out of Caldiaa's vault and Babbo (with the Orb's soul downloaded into it), then deserted Caldia for a journey across MÄR-Heaven, recruiting warriors for the army they called Chess Pieces. In 2 years' time, Phantom befriended Peta and fell in love with Alma, a Vestrian sailor - until Diana was chosen as the bride of Lestava kingdom and enthroned herself Queen of the Chess Pieces. With the mantle of Chess Pieces' number 1 Knight and the completion of its construction falling onto Phantom, Diana tattooed him with the Zombie curse, weeding out his ability to die. This, however, resulted in the wane of Phantom's romance as while he was infatuated with immortality and believed it would deliver him of the flawed, limited human existence, Alma desperately sought the opposite, respecting its constant cycle of death and rebirth. Seeing the disharmony, each took their own leave and Phantom set out on another journey to assemble brethrens whose ideals were akin to his.

Another 2 years passed as the Chess Pieces mustered enough power to wage war against MÄR-Heaven and Phantom, in command of its thousand fighters, quickly suppressed every opposing force. In reply, the kingdom of Lestava, MÄR-Heaven's sovereign superpower, incorporated a mass of worldwide fighters into a retaliating army, the Cross Guard. The Chess Pieces, in an attempt to fight off the Cross Guard, then initiated the War Games. During the last round of the War Games, Phantom and Danna fought to a draw, Phantom's arm being torn off and Danna receiving a fatal wound in the attack. As Peta went on to explain to the Cross Guard, Phantom would one day come back, and the war would continue.

Personality

To those who follow him he is a charismatic leader, to those who love him a respectable character, and to those who resent him a heartless killer. The no. 1 Knight always wears a smiling mask, behind which dwells a raging disdain for humans, partly by King's brainwashing, and partly from the death of his parents, which he never ceases grieving over years later. Even in his mind washed state Phantom retains his human self, as seen when he cries over Peta's dead body.

Phantom likes to be entertained at all times, hoping during each Great War that a strong enemy will appear and trying his best to make each battle as enjoyable as possible. Phantom acts kindly to even his enemies, though he does so in a mocking manner. Despite his kind exterior, however, Phantom is one of the most sadistic and cruel of those in MÄR-Heaven, taking enjoyment in killing and war. It is for this that Ginta Toramizu, Danna's son, cannot forgive him.

Tom (guise)

During Phantom's attempt to get close to Ginta, he went under the guise of a kind young boy named Tom, a citizen of Vestry. The Chess Pieces had killed Tom’s parents, and he had the ability to see ghosts, an ability the Chess Pieces had been quite interested in. Tom refused to join, however, knowing that it was the Chess Pieces who killed his parents. To play with Ginta, Phantom had Ginta witness Tom get killed by Peta in the anime. Phantom later shows himself after the 3rd Round of the War Games, however, and explains that Tom never existed to Ginta, much to his anger.

Plot

Shortly after Babbo was released from his seal by Ginta Toramizu, Phantom was resurrected, and went to visit Diana to learn of the world's current state. Phantom, inside Lestava Castle, then greeted all of the Chess Pieces and told them that they would fight again. Within three days after that, the Chess Pieces had conquered almost half of MÄR-Heaven, much to Phantom's excitement. Hearing of Ginta through Peta, Phantom took the guise of Tom and befriended Ginta, watching from the background as Ginta fought the Chess Piece Bishop Girom on a ghost ship. While leaving, Phantom killed the Bishop Orco for his cowardice.

Throughout the second War Games, Phantom watched the battles between the Chess Pieces and Team MÄR, the force opposing the Chess Pieces of which Ginta was a member of, from the sidelines and having several meetings with both Diana and the Chess Piece Knights. Following the fourth round, Phantom led an invasion of Caldia (killing one of the guards at the gate), and killed two Chess Pieces attempting to escape the fight against Dorothy. While in Caldia, he found Ginta, who was exhausted from defeating several Chess Piece Rooks. The two had a short battle, where Phantom completely outclassed Ginta, which later proved only to motivate him. Phantom later had Ian, a Rook in the Chess Pieces, kill the Knight Rapunzel to be promoted to Knight class, commenting on how rage and hatred increased Ian's strength.

During the Final Round of the War Games, Phantom had his second fight with Ginta. Phantom, following the final revelation of his wizard identity, sent Guardian after Guardian at Ginta, and Ginta revealed his sixth version of Babbo, Puss in Boots, a giant cat that could use other ÄRM. During the fight, Ginta tore off Phantom's sewed on arm, leaving only two of Phantom's ÄRM left to use. Following their destruction he tried to best Ginta physically, however was crushed by an enlargened Babbo and lost the match. Candice, one of Phantom's most devoted followers, then carried Phantom to his throne in Lestava Castle. His eventual death, although consistently preceded by Diana's announcement of his dismission from her service (as she now considers him useless), progresses with different sequence in the manga and anime adaptions:

Manga Ending

In the manga, Phantom awaited for Team MÄR's arrival to end his life, which was done by Alviss, and apologized to the lamenting Candice and bidding the world farewell as he passed away.

Anime Ending

Diana did not take the news of Phantom's lost lightly and casted him away as if he was a useless puppet. The Ghost Chess teleported Phantom, Candice, and Rolan (who was with them) to a decrepit fortress on a desolate island, where the Ghost Chess then proceeded to activate Alviss' Zombie Tattoo, putting him under Phantom's influence, and defeat each of MÄR. After Alviss was freed and returned to finish Phantom off, Candice led Phantom out of their hiding place in an attempt to save him. They were finally cornered at a cliff looking out to the sea; however, seeing how much Candice cared for him, Phantom understood he wasn't so unloved like he thought he was. He used the last of his energy to protect Candice from Ginta's attack and, with his heart set at ease, embraced death by voluntarily putting the Purific Ave into his body to the awe of Alviss, who was actually half-reluctant to after witnessing his act of selflessness. Before his last breath, Phantom was given a rose by Alviss, which was Rolan's gift to him when he died, and erased the Zombie Tattoo mark off his hand. Alviss then covered Phantom's body with his shirt and, as a sign of respect, asked Jack to grow back the withered plants on the barren ground Phantom was resting on, entombing him amidst a green field of flowers.

ÄRMs List

Phantom keeps all of his ÄRM sewn onto his newly attached arm, having lost the original during his fight with Danna, and usually hides the arm with a large number of bandages. His ÄRMs are:

  • Dark Babbo: Phantom's previous ÄRM, inside which 6 years ago Orb resided. After he was killed by Danna, it also was secretly taken out, and the ÄRM was sealed. It is now used by Ginta.
    • Zombie Tattoo: Not an ÄRM, but a tattoo created by one of Babbo's old powers. It allows Phantom to resurrect himself every time he is killed, and only by removing the tattoo can one truly finish the Knight off, resulting in the removal of all tattoos cast by him hitherto (Alviss', Rolan's, and Peta's). To remove his tattoo, one must place inside a hole in his chest the Holy ÄRM Purific Ave.
  • Allu Majuu (Allumage in the English dub): A Unique-typed ÄRM in the shape of a fiendish flame orb chained to a black halberd. When ordered, the orb will enlarge itself and engulf opponents, killing them in a deadly explosion.
  • Phantom Glass: A Unique-typed ÄRM, a mirror which traps opponents inside it and shatters after a short amount of time (presumably coherent to the victim's magic level in the manga, while works on a mechanism with a hourglass in the anime), sharing the trapped ones a same fate. Phantom uses this to kill cowards in the Chess Pieces too.
  • Phantom Cannon: (anime) Unique-typed ÄRM, releases blasts of energy from his palm.
  • ???: Another Unique-typed ÄRM, a mass of hexagonal fragments. In its defense mode the fragments construct an impenetrable shield, and when discharged in attack mode they will launch consecutive shoots at the target. When inactive, these are kept along Phantom's sewed on arm, giving the effect of scales.
  • Soul Infinitia: A ghostly Darkness ÄRM that takes the form of a darkly colored ribbon. After draining the life force of all around it besides the user, it launches itself at its master's intended target.
  • I (Eins): Guardian ÄRM, the sentient type, a knightly armored creature which attacks with a long spear. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • II (Zwei) - Lemures: Guardian ÄRM, the insentient type, one of the only two to be named and strongests - a Herculean version of these common dark souls. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • III (Drei): Guardian ÄRM, the insentient type, a muscularly built wood monster. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • IV (Vier): Guardian ÄRM, the insentient type, a four-legged puppet with its head twisted upwards. Special ability: crossing space. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • V (Fünf) - Dead Dragon: Guardian ÄRM, the insentient type, one of the only two to be named and strongest - a dragon with decaying skins and reeky breath. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • VI (Sechs): Guardian ÄRM, the insentient type, a gigantic stuffed rabbit with a sewn mouth which, each time it opens, will release a destructive beam. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • VII (Sieben): Guardian ÄRM, the sentient type, a Humpty Dumpty-like midget, donning an outfit of late 18th/earlier 19th century style (as its top hat and cane suggest). Not much of its ability is known. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • VIII (Acht): Guardian ÄRM, the insentient type, a stone monster. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • IX (Neun): Guardian ÄRM, the insentient type, a levitating cloaked monster with invisible gloved hands and a log for a head. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.
  • X (Zehn): Guardian ÄRM, the sentient type, a skeletal hooded phantom, which assails the opponent emotionally. Special ability: once the opponent falls for its words, X's outwardly harmless appearance will transform into a more malignant one and finishes the prey. Destroyed during his battle with Ginta.

It should be noted that the names of all of Phantom's numbered Guardians are the German words for the numbers 1-10. Additionally, all ten of those Guardians also bear on them the Roman Numerals for their number. Phantom's skill level is also powerful enough to call forth more than one of these Guardians at a time (which presumably, for perilously risking the master's mental capacity and stamina, is most unadvisable for everyone). Alan once commented it "was like trying to write different letters with both right hand and left hand".

References

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