|“||I welcome you, believer in love! I am the Sin Archbishop in the Witch Cult, representating Sloth. Petelgeuse Romanee-Conti!||„|
|“||With the forthcoming of the Ordeal, you let a potential problem remain! Is this the way you repay our Gospel? Ah, that was sloth...sloth! sloth! sloth! sloth! Please forgive us the sloth that has led us to betray your goodwill! Love, we must repay love with love!||„|
Petelgeuse Romanee-Conti (in Japanese: ペテルギウス・ロマネコンティ, Peterugiusu Romanekonti), simply known as Petelgeuse and erroneously as Betelgeuse, is the main antagonist of the Arc 3 of the Re:Zero manga and light novels as well as for the second half of the first season of the anime. He is one of the Sin Archbishops of the infamous Witch Cult, representing the sin of sloth.
Back in time, Petelgeuse was a spirit who fell in love with the Elven mistress Fortuna, aunt of Emilia. Over in time, Petelgeuse visited more often Fortuna and her niece, and considered them both to be his family. At one time, Petelgeuse took a box from the sage hero Flugel , which contained the Genes of Sloth.
When Pandora, the Witch of Vainglory and the Archbishop of Sin Regulus Corneas attacked the Elven village in the forest where Fortuna and Emilia were living, and Petelgeuse was willing to protect them even if his life would be at risk, and decided to release the Sloth Genes, gaining the Authority of Sloth. However, Pandora was clever enough for tricking Petelgeuse into almost killing his lover Fortuna, Pandora then completed his atrocious actions by twisting Petelgeuse's mind beyond any repair, thus making him the Archbishop of Sloth and a completely deranged person
Petelgeuse's actions result in the Roswaal Manor's village and the death of multiple characters. But the protagonist, having the power to coming back in time after his death, tries to prevent the slaughter.
Petelgeuse is first seen ordering all preparations for his Ordeal in a secret cave, when his cultist suddently brought an unconscious Subaru with the scent of the Jealous Witch, something that can be perceived by magic users. When he wakes up, Petelgeuse wonders if the boy is the future Archbishop of Pride. Meanwhile a cultist informs Petelgeuse that the dragon carriage was destroyed and the boy bringed in his presence. Exalted by how his cultist managed to do as he told them, he begins to overjoy himself of such "diligence" of his followers. But suddenly, the cultist informs him that the girl Rem, that accompanied the boy was missing, which changes the Archbishop's mood and brutally beats his underling to death, short after crying over the sloth of the Witch Cult, he demands that the girl must be found: Alive or dead. When the others retreat, Petelgeuse begins questioning Subaru, when suddenly Rem appears from the entrance of the cave, and begins killing cultist members, until Petelgeuse release his Authority of Sloth and strangles the girl, then proceeds to lecture Subaru about how his actions of giving up and locking himself up in his thoughts defines sloth itself, and because of that, he kills her and begins twisting Rem's body to death with his Unseen Hands.
While Subaru begins screaming the name of Petelgeuse, he orders his subordinates to retreat and march forth towards the Roswaal Manor, where he promptly kills Emilia and everyone near. All his actions were reverted after Subaru went back in time after being killed by Puck, the spirit guardian of Emilia.
Petelgeuse returns again with the Witch Cult after Subaru, accidentally kills Emilia. Seeing him now as a complete stranger with a familiar scent (due to Subaru's time-traveling abilities, his experience in the cave was erased). He applauds the youth's diligence for doing his work for him and bringing Emilia's body for him. When Petelgeuse readies his Unseen Hand, Subaru steps back with Emilia's corpse, an astonished Petelgeuse remains silent, for no one had seen his Authority Over Sloth until now. His thougts are interrupted when Puck appears for avenging Emilia; Killing the cultists and freezing Petelgeuse to death, with the last remaining defiant to the spirit to the end. Because Subaru dies short after, Petelgeuse's death, as well as his actions, are reversed again.
With Subaru now knowing where and why the Witch Cult will attack, he meets Petelgeuse outside the cave when he first meet him. Petelgeuse wrongly greets him as an unknown cultist and asks where his book of gospel is, in order to verificate if he truly is a member of the Witch Cult, but Subaru set a trap that collapsed the cave and, with the help of Wilhelm, he slice Betelgeuse in a half. Unknown to Subaru, Petelgeuse can come back from the death and posses bodies with the Jelaous Witch scent, and begins possesing various members of the Witch Cult, with Subaru and his company killing them all. When he is cornered, Petelgeuse decides to take profit of the Witch Scent within Subaru and take control of him, remaining some consciousness, Subaru ask Felix to kill him, without fully understanding, Felix deals a finishing blow to Petelgeuse-Subaru. With his death, Luckily Petelgeuse didn't take Subaru's powers, but he was sent back in time.
This time, Subaru ends all of Petelgeuse's cultists before confronting him personally, when Subaru and Julius cornered Petelgeuse, he began summoning his Unseen Hand, with Julius enchanting Subaru's eyes in order to see the Hands, he begins slicing the hands, until he wounds Petelgeuse. Desperately, he releases his spirit form in order to possess Subaru, but when he does, the Scent of the Jelaous Witch rejects him. With tears in his eyes, Petelgeuse feels that his beloved has abandoned him, and violently begins to smash a near mountain with his Unseen hands, until a rock falls and crushes his body.
Petelgeuse apparently survives after that, but now needing his Unseen hands to subject his body, he takes the form of a wild animal and begins chasing Subaru in a dragon carriage. The presecution ends when his hand is crushed by the wheel of the carriage, dragging what's left of Petelgeuse into the wheel and dismembering him completely, killing him for good. With his death, the rest of the cultists were captured or killed and the, along with the Clergy of Sin following Subaru more closely.
A truly dangerous individual, Petelgeuse takes his adoration for the Jelaous Witch very seriously, to the point of being obsessed with resurrecting her. He sees her as someone who has send her love to him, and now he was meant to repay his love with all his might. Even after the Witch rejects him, Petelgeuse is still willing to sacrifice his life for her. His rare and wild manners are only a hint of his profound and permanent psychosis, enjoying bringing great pain on others and even to himself in moments of self-pity or stress. Petelgeuse is greatly pleased to see others carrying out his duties diligently, even more if love is the reason behind such duties. Although he is the Archbishop of sloth, he gets angered and frustrated with actions leaded by resignation, surrender, hoplesness, even if those actions minimally derive from sloth.
Although Petelgeuse was not always like this, he used to be a rational, caring man who would protect his loved ones with his life, but his actual mental state changed for the worse after the events of the Elven village.
- According to the author, he is the most benevolent out of all the Sin Archbishops.
- When the first season of the anime ended, Petelgeuse was regarded as one of the most memorable characters in the show.