Can I just point out how every single Sorceress in FFVIII is unbelievably badass? Seriously look we have:
Edea, whose insight is so spectacular she knows she’s likely to go darkside and founds an entire series of schools devoted to stopping her and whoever might follow her. She collapsed her own mind rather than let Ultimecia know jackshit about Ellone, and when she wakes up having conquered an entire nation and almost killed her own children, she dusts herself off and immediately comes up with a plan to guarantee her powers won’t be used for evil again and to prepare to stop Ultimecia.
Adel, who was so incredibly powerful that the Esthar Resistance didn’t even bother to attempt to kill her. They sealed her away and sent her to the fucking moon, building a space station solely to keep an eye on her for well over a decade so she could never escape. It doesn’t even work. And in between her sealing and release, her rage is so great that all radio communication on the planet gets knocked out, instead showing static-y messages from Adel, I am still alive here, Take me back there, I will never let you forget me
Ultimecia, who conquers the entire planet in the future, wipes out Edea’s specially-trained-to-specifically-fight-sorceresses SeeDs, looks at her domain and thinks, Not enough. Comes up with an actually feasible plan to condense all of time around her so she can conquer literally the entirety of existence.
Rinoa, who runs an anti-occupation resistance movement directly against her own father, holds her own alongside a group of specially-trained mercenaries even though she’s had no formal training, allows herself to be possessed by Ultimecia just for the chance to kill her, and basically reorganizes space-time when Squall wanders off and gets his ass lost and all while half the age of every other sorceress in the game
So basically do not fuck with the women of FFVIII.
I looooove the conspiracy theory that Rinoa is Ultimecia. Ultimecia is such a boring antagonist on her own because she has little to no back story at all. But if you consider that Rinoa may eventually be driven mad by the loss of Squall, it makes things much more interesting. And it explains why she has Griever!
I just rewatched the FFVIII ending (again…) and for some reason I’ve never noticed the background in this scene before. But that statue(?) is interesting. I thought it might be Adels Tomb at first, but it’s not that similar. Then I noticed the glowing orb (top picture) and it looks a bit like Ultimecia’s head in her final form. Do we see this statue/figure earlier in the game anywhere? Been a while since I played it.
It’s placement and also where it appears like straight behind Rinoa while the viewer(Squall) drives(?)/zooms into that room makes it seem very important.
@jadetarsier suggested something fascinating and I have been turning it over in my head all day.
The possibility that, by the end of the game, Rinoa is no longer a sorceress.
Hear me out: part of Ultimecia’s goal is to gather all the powers of all the sorceresses across time, essentially completing the puzzle of Hyne and claiming the entirety of godlike powers for herself, then going one better and doubling up on it by reaching for powers through multiple time periods. But key point: she has all the pieces. She has Hyne.
What if, once the pieces are reunited, the Succession finally ends? What if Hyne, whole inside the spirit of Ultimecia, was mortally wounded with her? What if the power she passed on to Edea was already fading, and essentially meaningless?
Additionally, Ultimecia is connected to all sorceresses in her presence through Time Compression. But Time Compression was aborted halfway through its casting by Ellone: not every sorceress in existence throughout time was with Ultimecia. Rinoa, however, was. And so-connected, if Hyne was neutralized when Ultimecia died, so too might the powers of all the sorceresses Ultimecia had tapped start to fade.
Rinoa may have used the last of her powers to find Squall and bring him home. After which, she is free of them; just a teenage girl, again. It’s a new and unique theory and it still fits and I really like it.
I write Rinoa as a sorceress, having maintained her powers after the battle. I write about her learning to manage them, and how she deals with the anxiety and uncertainty that comes with the package.
And I try, very hard, to emphasize that her powers, however complementary to her relationship with Squall, are not necessary for that relationship to exist. He would be with her whether or not he was a knight, regardless if Rinoa has powers or doesn’t.
If you’re skeptical, consider this: Squall tells (well, thinks to) Angelo before Rinoa comes to see him in the flower field: “Rinoa is just Rinoa.”
A lot of people miss this scene because they already have Rinoa in their party when they arrive at Edea’s house, so no one goes to get her, and Squall never has the opportunity to have a one-way conversation with her dog.
That’s a shame, because apart from being really damn sweet, it’s a scene that underscores what I believe to be a key aspect of their relationship. That is, it isn’t dependent on Rinoa’s inheritance. You might think it would go without saying, but the whole sorceress/knight dynamic is very prominent in most stories (including my own) featuring Squall and Rinoa as a couple, to the point I think it sometimes eclipses the very nature of their relationship.
Squall would be there whether he was a knight or not. The concept of being a knight–however you interpret that term in your headcanon–does play into his sense of duty and gives a name to a purpose he’s defined for himself. But he’d be that way anyway, and if suddenly Rinoa isn’t a sorceress anymore, he’s not gonna just piss off. It’s her he’s interested in. Who she is, not what.
Although my headcanons follow a different route, I like the idea that, in the end, they’re just a couple of kids with troubles, brought together by circumstance. I like the idea of exploring them in that context. I kind of wish there was more of it in my writing–more space for it. I hope more people can work with this idea. It opens a lot of possibilities for them that are problematic to impossible with the constant undercurrent of Hyne’s influence haunting their every waking moment.
Okay SO! I wrote a thing, but it’s a Final Fantasy thing, so of my 7500+ followers, about 5 of you might care, hahahahahaha! Sorry to the ML people out there.
I’m on hiatus from ML (kinda) and so I been playing video games and, like, 3 of you are probably like “OMG Did she play FFX! Is she gonna update Beyond Reality?!” While the other 2 are sitting in the corner angry and thinking bitterly about Two Birds, A Different Feather. Did I update either of these things? The answer-
I wrote the first chapter in a Final Fantasy VIII fic instead, LOL. Another one that will be super slow to update and will probably still not be finished when I’m old and have one foot in the grave.
Okay, but seriously, this game is terrible. I love it, but it’s terrible. Do you realize how hard it is to write a fic that comes after the game just because of how utterly FUCKED UP the world is by the end? I mean, FFX everything was already pretty fucked up, FF7 things were slowly fucking up so you kinda see it happen. FF6 the world gets destroyed and the game’s all “WE’RE NOT DONE YET!” FF9, hey, some cities get destroyed, but it’s dealt with IN GAME! Like, you see Lindblum getting repaired, you see Garnet dealing with Alexandria, Zidane is all “SAVE THE GENOMES AND THE MAGES!” Like, they deal with the fuckery.
Garden is fucked. We’ll just go visit the one that got BLOWN UP and, I mean, who the hell knows what happened to the other one after we BODY SLAMMED THEM TOGETHER! At least the blue one is safe, albeit damaged. Galbadia? President is dead, everyone hates them, military in shambles, basically fucked. Esthar? Lunar Cry hit, monsters everywhere, people dying in the streets (literally, you can see it when you run by). Everything’s fucked. Centra? Fucked before the game even started. Literally, this whole world is FUCKED! I was writing and I was just, like, holy crap, there’s just one problem after another for these people. And I thought FFX was bad.
But that’s the thing about 8. It’s written like a prologue–like there should be more coming and we just don’t get it. Time compression? No explanation. Consequences of the war? Who cares. Squall finding out Laguna is his fucking FATHER?! Clearly not important. Ellone’s powers? Meh. Character developement for everyone except Squall and Rinoa? Don’t need it. This idea of fate that perpetuates everything but is never explained? That’s alright.
LIKE LITERALLY! This entire game is Squall on a mission constantly asking what’s going on and getting NO explanation. Like, aside from “whatever,” the most common thing said by anyone is “we wouldn’t understand even if we thought about it, so let’s just NOT.” That’s it–that’s the theme of the game. And poor Squall is like, I don’t want friends, I don’t want attention, I don’t want a promotion, I don’t want a father, I don’t want time compression, I don’t want a stupid fated orphanage and dumb excuses about GFs. What is happening? Why this happen? THERE ARE SO MANY QUESTIONS LEFT UNANSWERED AND IT DRIVES ME CRAZY!
Like, usually when I write fic, it’s because the stuff in the source material is so good that I want to keep going. Except for FF8, where I’m just so desperate for closure I’m like, LET ME DO IT MYSELF!
Don’t get me wrong, I love this game, but it also drives me insane. We are all Squall–confused children in the face of FF8′s convoluted story. But, like, it’s still the one I want to see redone the most, hahahahahahaHA! Like, FF7 is great, but it’s already got so many spinoffs and such. Besides, how can you NOT want to see Squall’s expressions during the whole game. Like, realizes he has to work with Zell?–fucked. Seifer is Squad Leader?–fucked. Getting chased by a giant spider?–fucked. Dancing with a girl?–super fucked. Later working with that same girl?–more fucked. Constantly pissing her off?–still fucked. Attack the sorceress head on because your sniper was a failure?–fucked. Gets stabbed?–fucked. Missiles headed for your home?–fucked. Promoted to Commander a week after you become a SeeD?–supremely fucked. Like, the game would literally just be Squall’s expression growing increasingly more horrified as things spin more and more out of control around him, all the while everyone is just patting him on the back saying he’ll do great and handle everything. Like, omg, this poor child, he’s only 17. All he wanted was to avoid people and preferably not meet Laguna in real life. Instead, his girlfriend becomes a sorceress?–fucked again. WE HAVE TO GO INTO SPACE?!–not surprised to be fucked. Our enemy is a time traveling sorceress?–definite fuck. TIME COMPRESSION?!–what the fuck does that even mean?!
THERE ARE LITERALLY PIECES OF DIALOGUE IN THIS GAME OF SQUALL JUST BEING “?!?!?!?!?!?!?”
Poor Squall, poor Squall.
BUT the game probably won’t ever be redone because it’s not popular. You ask someone to name FF7 characters and they’ll be all “Cloud and Aerith and Tifa and Cid and Zack and Sephiroth!” but you ask about FF8 and people are like, eh, Squall, he’s the only one, right? Or, worse, they’ll say Leon.
Okay, but seriously, Squall would never call himself Leon. That’s so cliche and silly. Like, that is Commander fucking Leonhart to you, a title well-earned because his world was fucked long before you keyblade children even came into the picture. It’s like Cloud changing his name to Wolfen just because that happens to be the animal he’s symbolically linked to.
WHERE IS MY COMMANDER SQUALL LEONHART?! WHERE IS MY SORCERESS RINOA?! WHERE IS MY LAGUNA-DADDY DRAMA?! I NEED THESE THINGS!!!!