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Pied Piper of Hamelin is one of the 15 Archfiends introduced in Soul Sacrifice Delta.
This section may contain heavy spoilers due to content.
The boy's childhood was spent having never experienced a parent's love.
His parent had passed when he was still but a baby, and his uncle and aunt took him into their care in their poor, tumble-down home. The new addition only made their lives harder, and the boy was treated as more of a nuisance than anything else.
Though some cousins lived with him there, they treated him as though he were a leech. They resented him for the greater hardship that came with his arrival.
The boy simply was not wanted.
Even from a young age, the boy had his doubts about the value of life. He could tell what his aunt, his uncle and his cousins wanted to say from the looks they gave him alone: you never should have been born.
The boy became fixated on reading people's expressions. He felt that everyone in the world hated him, and withdrew from them, afraid.
There where only a select few in whom he could confide. They weren't people, of course - the boy had started keeping rats in secret.
Unable to relate to the other children at his age, instead the boy spent his days at play with the rats he kept.
The children who saw this were disgusted by the boy. They started to bully him. His body was always covered in cuts and bruises.
The overwhelming senses that no one loved him continued to mount, and with time the boy grew more and more submissive. His burgeoning shyness made it even harder for him to make friends. Instead, he filled the gap created by his overwhelming loneliness with his rats, which only darkened his already gloomy, sullen image, and caused the bullying to worsen. It was a vicious cycle.
Even as a full-grown man, he always lived in fear of others. Though outwardly an adult, he did not have the slightest notion of how to behave in society. His anxiety towards relating with others made it even harder for him to learn to be social. As always, he would only spend his time with the rats. One can easily imagine how the sight of a grown man playing with rats must have looked by others
The man drifted from job to job. Working with others was always somewhat uncomfortable for him.
As he grew more alienated from society, he became all the closer to his rat, trying to fill the gap. He was even closer to them now than he had been as a child.
The man learned to somehow understand the rats, and also to somehow express himself to the rats in turn. For example, he could make the rats jump somersaults by wriggling his finger. They were at his beck and call.
He felt comfort in the simple gaze of the rats. And as there was no disdain from the rats at least, in their eyes he felt none of the asperity that had made him rue his existence.
The man took pleasure in even the most mundane of exchanges with the rats. Expressing his thoughts, and appreciating the thoughts of others - he found the joy of such relationship not with people, but with the rats.
The other adults were disgusted by this. However, the little children who lived in the village were different. Filled with the innocent curiosity of childhood, their eyes lit up with wonder at the rats who would obey the man, and they started to like him.
The man would wriggle his finger to make the rats perform somersaults, and the children would laugh and shout. Eventually, he would be surrounded by crowds of children.
Every day, at a certain time, they would gather round outside the man's house and watch the rats dance.
For the first time in his life, he felt needed by other people. It was only when the man was playing with the children that he truly felt alive, at last.
The man taught his rats all kinds of tricks. To add to the children's delight, he stitched together a special costume, so he looked just like a traveling performer..
He grew to love the children. The man could never find a place where he felt he belonged, always thinking of himself as unwanted. He had felt that his mere existence was a nuisance to others.
Even that attitude changed somewhat. He started to think that perhaps he had been put on this earth to entertain children.
And then, one day...
The village was in a panicked uproar: a child had been abducted. He hadn't come home for days, they said.
The adults had already come to their conclusion about who the culprit was. They'd always thought of him as a shady character. His friendships with the children must have all been a ruse.
It was the "rat-catcher." The man didn't have the slightest idea what they were talking about. All the accusations were false. Yet the villagers would not listen - they had never treated him as one of their own to begin with. They looked down on him just as one would look at a rat with disgust.
It happened just as soon as the man left his house for a brief errand. A group of stone-hearted adults slaughtered his rats.
On his return, the man fell to his knees and let out a low groan. The rats were his treasured friends. How could they? And then, as the one surviving rat lay in the palm of his hands, ready to breathe its last...
A strange light appeared before the man. Hanging in the air was a white Chalice, and it spoke directly into the man's mind.
"Make the sacrifice, and i can grant you your wish." Did the voice spur him on? The man took the dying rat and swallowed it whole.
His body bloated into the apparition of a monstrous rat. Was it for revenge on the villagers that he became a monster? No, it was not.
It was a motivation greator to him than anger or bitterness. It was worry. The man feared for the safety of the abducted child more than anyone else in the village.
The man had become a monster so that he could find the lost child. It would be an easy enough task with a rat's sense of smell. He'd learned this from the long years he'd spent in the company of rats, after all.
The man didn't care if it meant that he'd be transformed into a monster. He'd never been treated as a human being to begin with, so what did it matter if he lost his human form? It was an easy price to pay if it meant he could save the child.
Though persecuted by the villagers, the man cared for the village's children more than anyone else.
The heartless villagers would never realize this bitter irony.
The rat-man, with his rat's sense of smell, began his search. The lost child was known for being the naughtiest boy in the village - the village brat, one might say. It was not unusual for him to reduce the other children to tears.
Following the boy's scent, the man came across a terrible scene. His hopes were dashed as he discovered the body of the village brat deep within the woods.
And at the same time, he also gleaned the identity of the murderer from the other scent found on the body. It seemed impossible at first, but there was no denying it.
It was the scent of the boy the village brat had relentlessly bullied. His favorite victim, in fact.
The rat-man put the clues together.
Unable to stand the bullying anymore, the boy must have tried to resist. Yet the bully fell awkwardly when the boy struck him, and was killed.
The man was overcome with painful emotions, as he knew only too well what it was like to be bullied himself. He had been in the boy's shoes before.
When the boy lashed out, he must have used up all his courage. This was something the rat-man had never managed himself as a child. Perhaps it would have been too much for him even as a grown man.
He felt as though he could feel the boy's agonized cry: " I'm just a boy, like you!"
The rat-man was trapped in anguish. If the villagers found out who the real culprit was...
He couldn't bear thinking about it. Yet even if he kept his discovery to himself, the boy would be found by the villagers eventually, and the truth may very well have come out.
The bully's victim was probably at home fearing for his life at that very moment. He must have been trembling with fear that the others would learn the truth, perhaps regretting having gone too far.
The rat-man reflected on his life as a young boy, and the pain of his abuse. The loneliness had twisted his heart, revealing itself in a warped form that made him want to prove his very existence. Ultimately, others distanced themselves from him no matter his efforts, sending him deeper and deeper into the vicious circle.
He just wanted someone to reach out to him. The bully's victim must have been the same. Now, at this time, he was the only one who could offer his hand to the child. If there was any meaning to his life, he would find it by saving the child who was living through the same torment that he had lived through. The kind "rat-man" made his decision.
"It was me, I am the villain!", the rat-man shouted his false confession from the rooftops.
It mattered not if he became the villain. This way, he could put an end to the whole sorry mess. He just had to keep playing the monster, in order to save his fellow victim.
And to this day, he continues to play the role of the madman kidnapper... hiding deep within his heart his love and desire to save a victim.
Currently not available.
- There's no Normal-difficulty Pied Piper of Hamelin. In order to fight one of this difficulty to acquire his LE and SE for Sigils like Gleaming Sigil IV, a blank page is required.
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