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Hector, also known as the Devil of Melancholy or simply Melancholy, is an enigmatic antagonist in the 2014 Japanese dark fantasy light novel series Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World as well as its anime television series adaptation of the same name. He first appeared as a flashback antagonist in the fourth story arc and has yet to reappear in the story.
At some point in his life, the languid young man named Hector came into contact with and absorbed the Melancholy Witch Factor. The Witch Factor within him eventually blossomed into the Authority of Melancholy, a power that allowed Hector to manipulate gravity to an impressively powerful level. As the possessor of the Melancholy Witch Factor, Hector was counted among the Witches of Sin, a collection of the people who wielded the nine Witch Factors that each corelated to one of the deadly sins. Due to his Witch Factor and his connection to the Witches, Hector became known as the "Devil of Melancholy."
Of the group, Hector and the Witch of Vanity Pandora were outliers of a kind. Firstly, Hector and Pandora were arguably the Witch Factor wielders whose motivations, pasts, and goals were the most enigmatic. Secondly, Hector and Pandora were both relatively unknown figures compared to the other Witches, as memory of their existence was eventually known to only a few people in the world. Thirdly, the nature of his and Pandora's relationship with the other Witches of Sin was unknown, although the Witch of Greed Echidna had a somewhat antagonistic relationship with them. And lastly, both Hector and Pandora represented sins not commonly considered to be parts of the seven deadly sins.
Around four hundred years ago, the Devil of Melancholy attacked the Sanctuary, a base-of-operations of sorts utilized by the Witch of Greed Echidna. Although his reasons were unknown, Hector sought something located within the Sanctuary. His path was blocked by the greatest mage of the era—Roswaal A. Mathers, who Hector proceeded to brutally beat in a battle. In order to protect her apprentice Roswaal, Echidna confronted Hector and the pair of Witches began a duel. Although the victor of the battle remained unclear, Echidna survived.
Eventually, the Witch of Envy Satella devoured six of the other Witches (including Echidna) and destroyed half of the world before being stopped. Alongside Pandora, Hector was the only other Witch of Sin who was not confirmed to be devoured by Satella. Whereas Pandora was known to survive past the calamity caused by Satella, Hector's status remained unclear. By the present day, information of Hector's existence was almost completely forgotten. The only person known to readily have knowledge regarding Hector was the Beast of the End Puck, an artificial spirit that had been created by Echidna around the time when the Witches still wandered the world.
Hector is voiced by Junichi Suwabe in the Japanese version of the anime adaptation. Suwabe has also voiced Grimmjow Jaegerjaquez in Bleach, EMIYA and Siegfried in the Fate franchise, Eraser Head in My Hero Academia, Sukuna in Jujutsu Kaisen, Leone Abbacchio in JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, the The Undertaker in Black Butler, Vergo in One Piece, and Kyogai in Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba.
Hector had the look of a young man around twenty years of age with a tall body and slender frame. His long messy charred-brown colored hair was tied into a braid that trailed down to his butt. His black eyes had heavy bags under them that gave off the impression of a sickly person. His mouth was slightly puckered and his cheekbones were fairly pronounced. The color of his face was poor and his posture was crooked, which, when coupled with his worn eyes, gave the impression of someone who found it demanding to put on clothes and leave the house. Indeed, every part of Hector's demeanour portrayed lethargy and a general lack of vitality. Rather paradoxically, Hector wore clothing reminiscent of a jester's, despite the lack of joviality conveyed by his attitude and posture.
Mirroring his Authority, Hector exuded negativity and often expressed his depressing thoughts out loud. He had a tendency to draw out his pronunciation of random words, a manner of speaking that was adopted by Roswaal after the Warlock of Melancholy defeated him.
Hector, a young man with a gloomy outlook on the world, came into contact with and absorbed the Melancholy Witch Factor. The power granted by the Witch Factor, called the Authority of Melancholy, allowed Hector to apply immense physical pressure on whatever he wanted. There were eight other Witch Factor bearers collectively known as the Witches of Sin, seven of which possessed Witch Factors that represented one of the seven deadly sins. Hector became known as the "Devil of Melancholy."
Hector and the eighth Witch, Pandora, both represented sins not considered parts of the orthodox seven deadly sins. Coupled with the fact that knowledge of their existences was relatively obscure, Hector and Pandora were considered "forgotten sins." Hector was acquainted with the Witch of Greed Echidna whom he considered attractive. However, their relationship turned sour for unknown reasons and Hector began pursuing Echidna across the world.
Attack on the Sanctuary
Echidna eventually formed a base-of-operations known as the Sanctuary of Kremaldy that rested within a large forest and was primarily populated by demi-humans. Hector learned of the base's location and approached the territory to confront Echidna. Before he could find the Witch, Echidna's magic apprentice Roswaal A. Mathers confronted the Devil. Melancholy fought Mathers, and despite Roswaal being the greatest mage of the era, Hector gravely wounded him with his Authority. As the mage fell to the ground, Melancholy rhetorically asked him if he wanted to continue. The agonizing moans produced by Roswaal irritated Hector, who continued to rend the flesh of his helpless opponent. Once again Hector suggested a surrender, even going as far as to commend Mathers for his effort. Yet the young mage rebutted the offer, prompting the Devil to twist and crush the flesh and bones of his victim. The pain he inflicted on his foe made Hector feel disheartened, as he didn't enjoy hurting others.
Suddenly, Hector sensed a person breathing and watching him from inside a nearby cabin. Believing that the breathing belonged to Echidna, the Devil turned his hand towards the cabin in order to crush it and its occupant with his Authority. However his attack was interrupted by Roswaal, who unleashed a powerful fire magic spell in his direction. As the sudden inferno approached, Hector expressed how depressing breaking a sweat was before promptly pounding the attack into the dirt. Seeing his final attack sizzle out, Roswaal damned his opponent. Hector defended himself, stating that he'd never wanted to become the Devil of Melancholy. Mathers admonished Hector for acting like the victim, a statement that worsened the Devil's mood further. Hector struck Roswaal with his Authority once again, causing him to lose consciousness. With his opponent finally silenced, Hector turned towards the cabin and crushed it with his power.
The person within, who was actually a young half-elven girl named Ryuzu Meyer, was also crushed by the Authority of Melancholy. Just before Meyer would've passed away, the Witch of Greed finally made it onto the scene. Appearing behind the crushed cabin, Echidna apologized for her tardiness as she dissipated Hector's Authority. Although surprised by Echidna's capability to negate his Authority, Hector remained indifferent and assured her that her apprentice had made up for her lateness. Echidna commented on how Hector's apathetic attitude hadn't changed at all, prompting the Devil to remark that her personality wasn't as cute as it had been in the past. Hector told Greed that he would allow her a moment to cry over the state of her gravely wounded apprentice, although she rejected his offer considering he was the one who had damaged him. The pair instantly began amassing their power for battle. As Ryuzu left the scene, the air became thick with the raw energy permeating it. Shortly thereafter, Ryuzu sacrificed herself to raise an impenetrable and permanent barrier around the Sanctuary that stopped the Devil from finishing his job.
Forgotten by history
Although what became of Hector after the attack on the Sanctuary remains unknown, Echidna and Roswaal survived the encounter. Strangely enough, Hector's role in history was unrecorded, meaning only a handful of individuals remembered him. Sometime after Melancholy's attack, Echidna's body was destroyed by the Holy Dragon Volcanica who sealed her soul in a tomb in the Sanctuary. The only people who could enter and leave the Sanctuary at will were those who didn't possess demi-human blood. Over the next few centuries, the demi-human population of the Sanctuary sought to disable the barrier by completing a set of trials inside the Tomb of Echidna. However, they were never able to do so.
The battle of the Sanctuary deeply affected Roswaal, who took to adopting Hector's mannerisms so that he would never forget the humiliation of the fight he lost. Mathers went as far as to mimic Hector's strange method of speech and bizarre dress sense. Around four centuries later, a clone of Ryuzu Meyer named Ryuzu Shima possessed fragments of her genetic template's memories, including her brief encounter with the Devil of Melancholy. She recounted the events that transpired on that day to Subaru Natsuki, Garfiel Tinsel, Otto Suwen, and Ram.
Powers & Abilities
- Authority of Melancholy: Having absorbed the Melancholy Witch Factor in the past, the Devil of Melancholy could wield the Authority of Melancholy. Like all Authorities, Hector's power made him an incredibly formidable combatant. He was capable of effortlessly defeating Roswaal A. Mathers, who was the greatest mage of the era. He was apparently also stronger than the Witch of Greed Echidna and the Great Spirit Beatrice combined. By extension, he was also more powerful than the Witches of Lust and Wrath. The power itself allowed Hector to telekinetically apply an immense amount of pressure on whatever he wanted. He could use the Authority to land invisible blows on an opponent as well as to shatter their bones and rupture their internal organs. He was even able to use his power on magic spells, as seen when he effortlessly dissipated Roswaal's fire magic.
Light Novel Excerpts
List of Appearances
- Like the other Witches of Sin (with the exception of Satella), Hector received his namesake from a celestial body. 624 Hektor is the name of the largest Jupiter trojan, an asteroid that shares the planet Jupiter's orbit around the Sun. His name, like the celestial body, may also be a reference to Hector, a trojan prince appearing in Greek and Roman mythology.
- The fact that Hector was unable to breach the barrier of the Sanctuary implies that he may've been a demi-human of some sort.
|Capella Emerada Lugunica · Louis Arneb · Lye Batenkaitos · Pandora · Petelgeuse Romanée-Conti · Regulus Corneas · Roy Alphard · Sirius · Stride Volakia|
|Witches of Sin|
|Carmilla · Daphne · Echidna · Hector · Minerva · Pandora · Satella · Sekhmet · Typhon|
|Black Serpent · Great Rabbit · White Whale|
|Gusteko Assassin Organization|
|Elsa Granhiert · Mama · Meili Portroute|
|Balleroy Temeglyph · Bean Argyle · Heinkel Astrea · Kurgan · Melaquera · Miles · Reid Astrea · Roswaal Mathers · Sphinx · Ton, Chin, and Kan|