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Dynast Grausherra

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The central antagonist in the final arc of the Slayers Novels, Supreme King Dynast Grausherra is one of the five Demon Lords created by the Demon God Ruby Eye Shabranigdo. Like any other demon, he aims to awake his dormant God and to destroy the world, so that the demon kind could dwell the Sea of Chaos: the source of all creation. He manipulates events from the shadows, since the beginning of the ninth novel to the end of the thirteenth one, where he is defeated by the protagonists. However, his true scheme is only put into motion in the fourteenth novel, which results in awakening the fragment of Shabranigdo dormant within a young mercenary named Luke.

Overall presentation

Supreme King Dynast Grausherra is the Demon Lord of War and Ice, who rules over the frozen wasteland of the north, the Slayers counterpart of the North Pole. In the Slayers Novels, he only appears under the aspect of Wells Zeno Gairia, the King of Dills whose place he usurped to serve his scheme. Under this disguise, he is described as a muscular man in his thirties, with long black hair and aristocratic support.

Like any other demon in the series, Dynast Grausherra is not a flesh and blood being but an evil spirit who resides in the Astral Plane of the Slayers World. As such, he must create an avatar of himself to be present on the Physical Plane. Being a high-ranking demon, he can shape-shift his avatar to any aspect he wants and makes it imitate any lifeform perfectly. His human-like earthly avatar is depicted as a very young man with short black hair, stern face and aristocratic manners, clad in rich black and white clothes or in silver armour. His true astral form is depicted as a purple-eyed giant wearing a dark spiked armour, and is described in the novels as an immense shadowy figure.

Dynast & Sherra

Dynast's true form (left) alongside Sherra (right) in SD style

Personality-wise, Dynast is described as cold, calculating, arrogant, refined and cruel. He is extremely violent in battle, yet extremely intelligent, cunning and manipulative, rivalling with Shabranigdo's right-hand-man Hellmaster Phibrizzo in terms of intelligence. (He also shares a remarkable actor talent with his "brother", given that they both pretend to be genuine humans in a very convincing way.) This intelligence is demonstrated by the complicated multi-layered plan he devised in the Novels and its near-perfect fruition.

Dynast wields all the powers and the Black Magic spells befitting a demon of his level. These powers include: to retreat into the Astral plane, to act on the Physical plane while he remains in the Astral, to teleport, shape-shift and make levitate his earthly avatar, (as well as other things and people) to create things, to change the weather and to open a sub-dimensional plane, among others. Being the Demon Lord of War, he is also extremely skilled with swords and other weapons, and well versed into war and military strategy. He also wields complete control over the Ice element, and lesser control over Lightning. The Black Magic Spells that draws upon his own power are the Dynast Breath (a devastating ice attack which freezes the target solid and shatters it) and the Dynast Brass (a devastating pentagram of lightning).

Birth and Background

Creation

At the beginnig was the Sea of Chaos and its personification, the genderless Lord of Nightmares (referred to as a she in spite of her masculine title). Through her dreams, the Lord of Nightmares created four different Worlds with a Demon God, embodiment of Evil, and a Dragon God, embodiment of Good, in each one of them.

In the Slayers World, the Demon God, Ruby Eye Shabranigdo battled the Dragon God, Flare Dragon Ceifeed during many millennia. At some point around 5000 years before the events of the series, Shabranigdo created five Demon Lords: Hellmaster Phibrizzo, Supreme King Dynast Grausherra, Chaos Dragon Garv, Greater Beast Zelas Metallium and Sea Queen Deep Sea Dolphin. At the same time, Ceifeed created four Dragon Lords: Aqualord Ragradia, Airlord Valwind, Earthlord Rangort and Firelord Vrabazard. Shortly after, the two deities defeated one another, Ceifeed having his body destroyed and his spirit scattered all around the world, and Shabranigdo being divided in seven parts which were sealed into human souls.

The Demon and Dragon Lords established themselves in the world and created subordinates; each Demon Lord spawning two high-ranking demons to serve them, one Priest and one General, except Zelas who created one mazoku to fulfill both roles, this demon named Xellos is as such the strongest high-ranking demon below the Demon Lords themselves.

The War of the Monster's Fall

Over 1000 years before the start of the series, Hellmaster Phibrizzo staged a war between several human nations. He then worsened the conflict, before swarming the lands with lesser demons. His objective was to gather enough negative emotions to awake the fragment of his master which he had discovered sealed in the archmage Lei Magnus. He eventually succeeded and the newly awoken “Demon King of the North” took command of the demon armies in a worldwide war against the dragon kind. So began the War of the Monster’s Fall, perhaps the worst conflict in history.

During this war countless of dragons, demons, humans and other creatures were killed, including Dynast’s Priest and General. The five Demon Lords managed to make the knowledge of Holy Magic (the most useful weapon against them) almost disappear from the world, by destroying many of Ceifeed’s temples. After that, Dynast joined Phibrizzo, Zelas and Dolphin in the creation of the Demon Barrier: a gigantic force-field which separated a huge portion of the world from the other continents. This barrier cut the world in two and prevented the dragons trapped inside from casting Holy Magic, thus drastically weakening them.

The war ended with no defined winner after the death of the Dragon Lord Ragradia. The Demon Lord Garv was fused with a human soul and Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo was sealed forever in the everlasting ices of the Kataart Mountains.

Dynast later created another Priest and another General (who is named Sherra) in order to replace the two who fell during the war. Other sources states that he directly created two Priests and two Generals, who are as such much weaker than the other high-ranking demons, but these sources were contradicted by Hajime Kanzaka, the creator of the series.

Dynast then spent the following millennium recuperating the power he used to create his new servants, and he also served as a spokesperson of some sort for Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo, who is imprisoned near Dynast's own domain.

Dynast Grausherra's masterplan

The first plots

The ninth novel begins sometime after the death of Hellmaster Phibrizzo. It is worth nothing to note that the third and fourth seasons of the anime, which describe event unrelated to the novels, can be inserted between. The primary protagonist, the sorceress Lina Inverse and her friend the swordsman Gourry Gabriev are looking for a powerful magical sword for Gourry, whose legendary Sword of Light was taken away. They soon befriend two fellow adventurers: a powerful, young swordsman and sorcerer named Luke and his girlfriend, the sorceress Millina.

The four of them soon note that the land is swarming with demons and half-demons, and that several mysterious people clad in black are plotting something linked to this unnatural mazoku activity. These guys in black are looking for a magical sentient sword, able to turn anyone it strikes into half-demon chimeras. They are also targetting a young girl named Sherra whom the protagonists protect, but who ultimately appears to be a high-ranking demon and the actual owner of the sentient sword. She then reveals that she is Dynast Grausherra's General; to which Lina mockingly replies that the Demon Lord lacks imagination when it comes to naming his subordinates.

The protagonists then discover that several people all around the world are plotting to raise armies and take over their lands.

First, they are hired as bodyguards by Larvas, the ruler of the city of Solaria. But they soon learn that Larvas is an impostor, and the leader of the guys in black. Larvas' true name is Bergis and he wants to raise a powerful army of chimeras for military uses. He was the king of the country of Ruvinagard, until his own people discovered his schemes and exiled him as well as his royal guards, who are now the guys in black. The protagonists manage to kill Larvas and his followers, who all turned themselves into powerful chimeras, but only to discover another plot in Crimson Town.

Cairius, the chief counsellor of the lord of Crimson Town is leading a rebellion in the Sorcerer's Guild to take over the city. Later, a young girl named Bell uses a magical sword that absorbs people's abilities and turns them into half-demons, to kill Cairius, whom she was forced to marry. It is then revealed that Bell is the true head of the plot and that the sword she uses is the very same that the sword owned by Sherra, Dynast's General. This sword is actually a demon named Doogolfer, who assumes the physical form of a sword.

Investigations in Gairia

The protagonists later go to Gairia, the capital of the kingdom of Dills. The city was almost destroyed by demons and the king of Dills, Wells Zeno Gairia is raising a huge army of mercenaries to protect his country. Among these mercenaries, a highly skilled female warrior named Sherra has quickly risen to the rank of general. Knowing Sherra's true nature and fearing that she might manipulate the king, like she seemingly manipulated the other conspirators, the gang resolve to investigate. Helped by two high ranked warriors of the army of Dills, they discover that many of the king's advisors have been turned into half-demons by Sherra and her demon-sword. They manage to confront Sherra whom they defeat and who dies with a smile on her face. The king of Dills rewards them for that.

However, this is not enough to end the crisis in Gairia. The city is still swarmed with mazokus and the warriors who helped the protagonists to defeat Sherra have been turned into half-demons. There is obviously another high-ranking demon hidden in town.

The gang later meets Milgasia, leader of the Gold Dragons of the Dragon's peak, and Memphis a lady elf who owns a perfect Zanaffar Armor: an immensely powerful artifact which can cancel magic by severing the links to the Astral Plane and can also summon a huge beast of light. These two newcomers joins forces with the gang in order to put an end to the demons' plot.

They all return to Gairia and ultimately discover that the king is in fact Supreme King Dynast Grausherra shape-shifted. All the recent events were manipulated from the shadows by the Dark Lord, as part of a complicated scheme to start a second War of the Monster's fall:

  • Dynast first impersonated the king Wells Zeno Gairia but kept him alive, most likely to learn how to act exactly like him. (He cursed the real king, turning him into a giant chunk of flesh, immortal but condemned to endless sufferings.)
  • As the king of Dills, Dynast now holds a great political power in the human side. He had demons destroy the town, giving him a pretext to raise an army under the pretence of protecting his

kingdom.

  • This situation would enable him to start a war between humans and demons, with a foot in both sides to better control the situation.
  • He then ordered Sherra to travel all around the continent and manipulate more or less directly several plots, in which some people would try to take over their land or their city and if greedy enough, would also raise armies and try to expand their conquests. Thus adding several sides in the upcoming war.
  • Pretending to be a mercenary who rose in rank in the army of Dills would enable Sherra to remain in constant contact with her lord without raising suspicion, and would attract the attention on Sherra only, should the plot be discovered.

Lina and her allies engage a fight against the Demon Lord, but even at six versus one they are absolutely no match for him. Memphis manages to put her Zanaffar Armor on Dynast, cutting him from the Astral Plan and preventing him from using his formidable powers, but Dynast's earthly avatar still overwhelms them, with physical strength and fighting skills alone. The tide turns when Dynast breaks Gourry's blade, revealing an extremely powerful magical weapon known as the Blast Sword underneath. (This sword was so powerful that it couldn't be controlled, so it was encased in another blade.) Lina ultimately manages to destroy Dynast's avatar with the Ragna Blade spell. Dynast does not die but he can no longer manifest himself in the Physical Plane until he has completely recovered.

Now that Dynast Grausherra's ambitions are stopped, Milgasia and Memphis depart after having rewarded the four protagonists. But this is not over yet.

Dynast's real goal

The gang soon arrives in Sellentia, a city famous for its temples; one for the Dragon God Ceifeed and one for each Dragon Lord. It appears that the city's Head Priest died in a fire that destroyed Ceifeed's temple, and that the High Priests of the four Dragon Lords are fighting for the position. Later, Airlord Valwind's High Priest is killed and Luke and Millina are hired as bodyguards by Aqualord Ragradia's High Priest, Kereth Rolentio.

Earthlord Rangort's and Firelord Vrabazard's High Priests soon declare war to each other and hire assassins to fight for them. During one of the ensuing fights, Millina is fatally wounded by a poisoned dagger and the only one able to save her, Rangort's High Priest, refuses to do so because she works for one of his rivals. Millina dies and Luke, overcome with grief and hatred, kills Rangort's and Vrabazard's High Priests. Rolencio himself only owes his life to Lina's and Gourry's intervention.

It is then revealed that the fire which destroyed the temple of Ceifeed and killed the Head Priest was caused by a demon following Dynast Grausherra's orders. This demon also influenced all four High Priests to wage war against one another, by making them hear voices which sounded like divine orders. These voices were telling them to become the next Head Priest even if it meant killing the others. The entire situation was in fact another one of the many coups d'état staged by Dynast.

Dynast Grausherra's first and foremost goal now becomes clear. He wanted to awake the fragment of Ruby Eye Shabranigdo he discovered within Luke's soul all along. To do so, he instructed the demons overseeing his many coups d'état to have Millina killed, so that Shabranigdo would be awoken by Luke's grief and hatred. Dynast's plan worked flawlessly. He most likely hoped that Luke-Shabranigdo would take command of the demon armies and would finish the second War of the Monster's Fall, that Dynast himself started. It is also fair to assume that Dynast hoped that Luke-Shabranigdo would fuse with Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo.


Hopefully Dynast's plan does not end the way he wanted to. In fact, Luke's mourning over Millina proves to match the Demon God's evil influence and Luke retains sufficient control long enough for him to choose to let fate decide. He then challenges Lina and Gourry to a fair fight and Lina ultimately manages to destroy Luke-Shabranigdo, using her friend's longing for death as a weapon and granting his final wish.

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