WARNING: This article may contain significant information from recent episodes that may be considered spoilers.
"Don't you trust my plans?" - Vermillion Versailles
"No." - Lignus Stormsent
Captain Vermillion Versailles is an airship captain who is also an air sorcerer. He is the captain of the Nightingale and wanted for piracy and crimes against humanity by Novo Albia, and holds a grudge against all Imperials.
Enemy of the EmpireEdit
Captain Versailles is the captain of the Harpoon-class airship Nightingale, and has sailed on the ship for a quite a while, becoming well-acquainted with his engineer, Zinsy Sparksprocket, and his surgeon, Lignus Stormsent. Recently, the ship's navigator, Jamie, was killed by an officer of the Novalbian Navy, Billingsworth, when the Nightingale was pursued by the Novalbian naval ship HMS Lanessa. The ship took on a new navigator, Saara Smallwick, and docked in Valt to get one of Zinsy's contacts to translate a strange map Saara found.
In Valt, after being accosted by a fire-and-brimstone preacher which Versailles was dismissive of, they entered the lair of Zinsy's contract, called Widow. While queuing Versailles tripped a Novalbian naval officer who was on his way out on purpose, then tried to steal a look at his papers but failed. When meeting The Widow Versailles managed to diplomatically negotiate a contract where The Widow would get a fifth of the share of the treasure which she suspected they would find at the end of the map after she transcribed it, Versailles rejecting a 1/6 share and a favour.
En route back to the ship via the market Versailles was spotted by the officer from before, who turned out to be Billingsworth, who attacked Versailles after failing to receive the latter's surrender). In the ensuing fight Versailles was downed three times: once in the opening salvo (Versailles not initiating the fight in an attempt to be seen as the victim), a second time by a guard and a third time while trying to rescue a downed Zinsy. Before he was downed the third time Versailles killed two guardsmen, including one by using his magic to throw a caltrop at the back of the guard's head, destroying the guard's head. Versailles was stabilised and dragged away by Lignus later.
On waking back on the ship Versailles immediately ordered Lignus to buy a healing kit. While waiting for Lignus and Saara's return Versailles got a street urchin to get information about Billingsworth's whereabouts, using his storm visage to intimidate the child, and gave the urchin a silver in exchange for a gold once he had returned, to make sure the child did not steal the information. Versailles noted down that Billingsworth was charged with disturbing the peace, but Vermillion himself found guilty of murder and sentenced to death by hanging. Learning that Billingsworth would be released in three weeks, Vermillion noted this down before casting off, intending to return to pay back Billingsworth.
Later they found a ship wrecked below them, which Zinsy identified as the lost ship Farmer's Fortune. After magic was not detected on the ship Vermillion had the ship brought alongside and leapt aboard, to the others' consternation. When Zinsy found and was attacked by a spectre, Vermillion leapt ahead and threw Zinsy behind him, attacking the spectre while ordering Lignus, left behind on the Nightingale to accomodate an escape if necessary, to man the swivel harpoon; Lignus eventually killed the spectre. The ship was empty despite detailed inspection, with no traces of life. However, they found a small fancy box ocntaining 6 gems of different crystals: Bloodstone, Crysoprase, Citrine, Onyx, Sardonyx, Star Rose Quartz, which Versailles pocketed. Before they left Versailles also ordered the swivel gun on deck, the only weapon present, to be brought aboard the Nightingale.
Afterwards Zinzy and Saara worked on figuring out the next heading without Versailles' permission, to his cautious approval. On reaching the first stop, the landshard of Isla Verde, Versailles decided to take the gems with him; when Saara suggested they split them for safety, Versailles disagreed but instead decided to give half of them to someone 'trusted' - namely, Lignus. Despite Versailles' urgency Lignus went and decided to visit a nearby house and ask the resident, who turned out to be a shepherd called Roxas, for advice and information. After being taken to a height on the island Versailles managed to figure out that "when the Twins dance afoot" referred to the constellations known by the islanders as "the Twins" - which Versailles considers as looking like a druid and a carebear - were on the horizon and thus appeared to be interacting.
After the next heading had been figured out Saara and Zinsy remarked that he had a rather old-fashioned way of thinking and that he was stuck in the past; when Saara implied that Versailels got Jamie, the old navigator, killed, he attempted to throw a stream of water at her very, very slowly. After some rather lame attempts to splash Saara he eventually managed to splash her boots to her bemusement.
After reaching the next three islands - the Stepping Stones, Versailles ordered the ship to be brought into the giant whale skeleton on the island of Whale Corpse. He and Saara landed via rope ladder and attempted to figure out the next heading, based on the clue being an "island of bones", which the Whale Corpse appared to be due to its whale corpse. After no real effect they went aboard and sailed to the next, unnamed island that immediately caused the Nightingale to suffer failures with its LeValt engine, which Zinsy managed to fix; Versailles decided to land after brute-forcing the ship into somewhere that was relatively safe to moor.
As the others tried to sneak across the island - and Saara noticed that there were skeletons appearing ahead of them but dissolving as they neared - Versailles was displeased as he wished to brute force his way to the objective, as it was clear this was the island spoken of on the map. As they were sneaking, Versailles needed the others' assistance, who fanned out ahead of him. At dusk Saara's raven spotted some buildings and signs of occupation ahead, namely a piccolo being played and a lamp. He wished to fight it, but the others did not. Versailles therefore decided to rest for the night due to the long journey ahead.
That morning they encountered a traveller who introduced himself as the player of the piccolo. Versailles introduced himself as the leader of a crew sent to find the Mary Rose, a ship carrying orphan children. The traveller introduced himself as Sever Wickham, first officer of the Depths' Embrace, on the island to look for treasure but marooned due to the awakening of a leviathan on the island. Wickham sought to get off the island, having apparently found what he sought, via Versailles' ship but he and Versailles sparred over this, and ultimately Wickham prevailed and decided to accompany them. Later, Lignus confronted Versailles over lying to Wickham, but Versailles stated that he didn't want Wickham to take advantage of them, and knew that the Nightingale could not take on the Trident-class Depths' Lament, well above its tonnage class.
Saara returned after a short talk with Versailles to reveal Wickham's interest in killing the leviathan on the island, which had awoken to cause the magical disturbance that had affected their ship and which kept Wickham's offshore. Versailles thus decided to "suggest" to Wickham that they observe this leviathan for weaknesses and to figure out an opportune place to atack it, which the other man agreed to, and they left the company of the other three. As they neared the building, they saw a strange metal pump that emanated green Cherenkov radiation from where it penetrated the ground. Versailles examined it, then cleansed it to observe a green glowing rune that he traced with charcoal and paper.
After reuniting with the others, Versailles spoke with Saara, and she suggested that she try and steal the item they were seeking, a spyglass, that they suspected Wickham had obtained before them. When he woke, however, Wickham had gone and Saara informed him that she had failed to steal it and he had left, but had proposed a trade. They set off early to attempt to secure the meeting zone - the buildings which Wickham and Vermillion had visited earlier - but the others dawdled so that Sever could see all of them when he had arrived. After some negotiation the two men agreed that Versailles and his crew could use the spyglass for one use, provided that it works and they could check it beforehand, in return for killing the leviathan for Wickham, who would also tell deeds of their feats in the future.
Eventually the hand-over was arranged and Versailles saw the new headings and inscriptions on the map through the spyglass and copied it down, muttering loudly that the treasure was back in Valt, before handing the glass back to Wickham. When the leviathan approached, he and Wickham threw harpoons attached to ropes at the leviathan, with Versailles boarding last; Wickham stayed behind on the building bidding them good luck. On the leviathan Versailles linked himself and his shipmmates together with rope to secure themselves, and they cleared two skeletons before proceding to what appeared to be a hole into the centre of the leviathan. With Lignus and Saara's help and with Versailles' crowbar they dropped a stone wall onto skeletons below them before descending.
Versailles was again dependent upon a light-imbued rock for vision, leading the group and was attracted by the gems in the tunnel walls, asking Lignus whether they were real or not. As they entered a room the gelatinous slugs there paid attention to Versailles, leading him to transfer the light to a paper aeroplane that he threw away from them, briefly distracting the slugs to allow them to pass. Later on, they became cornered by some slugs, and despite Versailles' attempt to distract them they attacked regardless, and Versailles lit up his shield in preparation for combat.
In the fight in the leviathan Versailles provided melee support and tried to throw a net he carried around to ensnare the slugs, with varying degrees of success. As they navigated the beast Versailles was very eager to secure gemstones that were located on the walls of the tunnels inside the beast, but after nearly being cornered by slugs once - and aware that the slugs were intelligent enough to gather numbers to overwhelm them - Versailles decided that it would be better to kill the beast.
As they neared the heart of the beast Versailles first wished to use his battering ram, Vera, which he was keeping in his backpack to his crew's bewilderment. Finally they decided on a strategy where he would throw his tent over the eye-like creature before assaulting it. They tried to do so, only for the creature to use its tentacles to rip the tent apart. He then tried to throw his net at the creature several times to his shipmates' bemusement and mockery until he gave up, only to shove his sleeping bag over the eye. This did manage to preoccupy the heart of the leviathan until it broke free.
With the leviathan's death Versailles saw a burning after image floating above the corpse, a sword of sorts, which he grasped at, only for his mind to grow black. In the vision he saw Autumnlander line infantry in red and orange uniforms on unbroken land fight men in purple, who attacked only for swords like, those Vermillion saw, to appear from rifts before them, which they seized. The purple-coated Guildarion troops' mages opened a massive portal behind them, only for their opponents to fire upon it, causing the half-cast spell to lash about. This was implied to be The Breaking. As Versailles mustered a creature spoke to him, showing him a sword like those summoned by the purple-coated troops, telling him to find him.
After the fight Versailles chose to help Zinsy get some gems as the leviathan's structural integrity fell, only to be hit by falling rock. Thus he left, and after a quick meeting with Sever Wickham chose to collect his harpoons, ignoring the other pirate. After the group left Wickham Versailles was opposed to Saara's suggestion that they join the Pale Embrace, Wickham's guild of treasure hunters, preferring to join the Scarlet Claw, Empire hunters. Versailles also broached the possibility of taking a set of the necromantic machinery onto the ship so that the ship would be defended and manned, to Lignus' hostility.
At the next stop, after finding the massive buried skull Versailles was cautious, only letting Zinsy approach after it had been scouted by Saara's raven and lit up by a pebble he throw into the eye socket. After seeing that what appeared to be trapped door inside, Versailles tried to clog the apparatus with sand, coconuts, rocks and plant material to little success until Zinsy told him to stop. When it was eventually opened and the treasure inside secured, Versailles decided to let Zinsy examine the machinery.
After returning to Valt, Versailles was suspicious at the presence of the Trident-class HMS Tireless Pursuit docked at Valtswell harbour, and made efforts to disguise himself, forging a letter and orders from the local Imperial Admiral, Exie Sherry, under the pretense that he was Captain Valentine, holding a letter of marque from Novo Albia and captaining the HMS Nightingblade. Before they departed, Versailles had an argument with Saara over division of the loot, eventually agreeing on a 1/3 of the loot for the ship's maintenance.
On shore Lignus alerted them to the fact that there was a bounty on their heads, with Versailles taking down and keeping the poster. Versailles then asked the harbourmaster, Margie Woods, to put the ship down under a false name for a bribe, and asked her to find out what happened to Billingsworth. Afterwards Versailles and Saara went to see Widow, where Versailles easily handed over Widow's share, asking Widow for assistance in their predicament. The information broker agreed to grease the palms of the local constabulary, but advised against dealing with or especially killing Novalbians. Widow also mentioned that the HMS Lanessa, Billingsworth's ship, had left a few days prior. Before they departed Versailles expressed that he was interested in any future jobs from Widow.
After regrouping with Lignus Versailles was disturbed then bemused that Saara had hired an "executive assistant", Miller Collins, asserting that Saara had hired him because of his similarity to Sever Wickham and Saara's purported crush on him, before suggesting that Miller, whom Versailles had decided to call "Tinder", was from the courtesan guild. More seriously Versailles was unhappy that Saara had done so without his permission and that Miller only answered Saara's orders. When they were accosted by Novalbian soldiers who recognised Versailles, Versailles did not fully manage to convince them that he was an Imperial agent with a letter of marque until Miller managed to convince them. With this state of affairs Versailles told the Imperial NCO that they needed to "keep their cover", and so punched the Novalbian in the balls before running away, later commending Miller on his quick-thinking.
With Miller's assistant Versailles visisted the local weapons and armour artisan Zinfandel Perriwinkle, buying a cloak of many fashions, and a dagger for Miller, as well as medical kits for everyone. Later Versailles and Lignus visited a local furniture shop to buy expensive goosefeather beds before sending money to Jamie's (the ship's ex-navigator) family, still feeling guilt at their death. With Saara off gambling Versailles went to visit Margie Woods to investigate Tinder, and bribe the harbourmaster to load an extra barrel of powder onto the HMS Tireless Pursuit, tasking Zinsy to put a timer and firestarter into the barrel. Woods also mentioned that Bllingsworth had left with the HMS Lanessa, and that the Empire had bought him out of jail, assisted by the presence of the 20-gun Tireless Pursuit.
Arriving at One Eye Willy's, where Saara had gone to gamble, after being told by Woods that the Empire had left a surgeon on Valtswell there with information about the heading of the Lanessa, they got involved in a fight with Cult of Anvil cultists. Versailles grappled up the side to help Saara and its occupants down before defending their exit. When Lignus was downed, Versailles started cutting through the cultists without care for their lives. The three eventually managed to make it to the docks as fires raged behind them, but Versailles was intent on sabotaging the Tireless Pursuit, but Margie Woods was unreceptive. Eventually he convinced Woods to give him a barrel of gunpowder, and he inserted a timed firestarter into it courtesy of Zinsy and marched to the dock where the Imperial ship was tied up.
Wearing dockworker's clothing given to him by Margie, he attempted to act like a dockhand who was ordered to take a barrel onto the ship, only to be stopped by an Imperial assault mech manned by Armand, who saw through the ruse as an attempt to blow up the vessel. However, Armand saw Versailles, calling himself "Jeffrey", to be a victim of circumstance and ordered him onto the ship for a reward despite Versailles' efforts to be allowed to go or to take the barrel on alone. Attempts to deflect it onto Billingsworth failed and Versailles was ordered aboard then down into the guardroom below the forecastle. Versailles eventually managed to make his way back up where the barrel still was and threw an oil lamp at the barrel as he jumped overboard, causing the open barrel to flash, obliterating the forecastle and setting it aflame. Versailles' fall was caught by the large debris net under the dock, though he twisted his arm. He eventually got off the net and was rescued by the Nightingale. After fighting off an assault mech pursuer that had followed him off the ship, Versailles ordered the ship to turn about and engage the larger ship. The Tireless Pursuit was damaged by the sabotage and had lost half of its crew, and so performed poorly in the ensuing skirmish, though the larger ship managed to get in a volley that obliterated the Nightingale's port battery. Versailles gave the order to board, and with judicious use of the harpoons took the ship's deck with ease.
After the capture of the Tireless Pursuit, Versailles forced the surrender of the crew on the gun deck, throwing Captain Rozier's corpse down the hatch, and ordered the surrendered crew to repair the ship and the Nightingale. Eventually Versailles decided to enter the captain's cabin, which, locked, caused him to attempt to bash it open with his battering ram. This detonated a lightning spell trap on the door, electrocuting Versailles to within an inch of his life, and obliterating the sailors on deck but for one, who was furious at Versailles' attempts at getting the charred men a good burial and was thrown overboard by Versailles. Tinder was also electrocuted and Versailles ordered Lignus to resuscitate him.
Returning to Valt with the Tireless Pursuit under tow (after the remaining Imperials attempted to capture the Nightingale and were killed), Versailles decided to set up the Tireless Pursuit as a hellburner to destroy the HMS Lanessa after he found papers indicating a rendezvous between the Lanessa and the Tireless Pursuit. He visited Edna Corpsley along with Zinsy to get her assistance, but failed to convince her to leave her home in the shipyards.
The Battle of ValtEdit
After the arrival of the Dawn Howl and Captain Waldein Samkeit in Valt, with news of an Imperial task force to occupy the island, Versailles' mind, initially set on retaining the Tireless Pursuit, changed back to the initial plan after the three had a pint. He, Waldein and Lignus visited Widow with this information, who was furious at Versailles bringing this down on the island. Eventually Widow's unwilling cooperation was obtained after the threat to her life and operations, and they attempted to get the assistance of the Valtswell Flintfolk, the local constabulary.
After being told to dissolve the threat of the Cult of Anvil by killing or arresting its leaders, Floyd Doppler and Ben, the three men agreed to Lignus' plan to drop a "holy" anvil on Floyd's head and use Ben to control the cult, and managed to acquire an anvil from Edna. Unfortunately, Versailles wished to observe the act by hiding amongst the crowd and was caught by Floyd. This threw their plans into a shambles and Waldein decided to unleash the anvil as Floyd was on the edge of the stage above the anvil. Unfortunately, Ben was crushed by the anvil instead of Floyd, resulting in a tumult. Plan B, where Lignus was acclaimed as the "true" prophet, failed despite Versailles' exhultations, and the three were forced to beat Floyd and an acolyte into submission as the cult dissolved.
Versailles then planned the defence of the landshard with Captain Victoria Valentine, while giving sword fighting lessons to Tinder. When the attack began, Versailles used the Tireless Pursuit as a hellburner, successfully luring away the HMS Iron Rock, a Trident-class, with distress flares while disguised as Captain Rozier. With the Novalbian ship lured alongside, Versailles set the fuse and featherfell to earth, having set the Tireless Pursuit adrift above ground. The resulting explosion destroyed both ships, but Versailles was hurt by falling debris and the psychic effect of the simultaneous detonation of the two ships' LeValt engines. He was healed by Lignus as they ran towards Widow's mansion as it fired a distress flare.
Versailles led the crew of the Nightingale', joined by Miller in a repaired assault suit and Zinsy on a mechanical dog, to relieve Widow. In the ensuing fight he acquitted himself well, casting lightning breath on himself and Zinsy to fight the group of Imperial officers and advanced clockwork dogs. He was seriously injured throughout the fight, but Lignus managed to heal him. After relieving Widow, two more flares came out from the shipyard and the docks.
Versailles had ordered the shipyard abandoned and intended to go to the docks, yet Edna had refused to leave despite his attempts. When Miller offered to go himself, Versailles reluctantly let him go, tying an Anvil symbol around the mechanical arm. Versailles then led them to the docks, only to spot the Lanessa pass above, a net containing a bone naga slung under it. When the bone naga was released and a clearly-corrupted Billingsworth jumped off, Versailles' hate for Billingsworth consumed him, and decided to stand and fight, his crew reluctantly joining him. The bone naga, Sithresh, could unleash blasts of energy that quickly cut down the defences of the crew, and soon they were all forced to fight as desperately as they could, and while Billingsworth had been called out as being Versailles' target alone, this was abandoned in exchange for the necessities of survival.
He was badly wounded by the bone naga, at which point he was exulted by the voice he had heard back on the Island of Bone to slay the abomination before him, and his sword glowed red. Versailles then managed to gain them some respite by casting a magical web net over both Billingsworth and the bone naga, and to protect himself and Zinsy, but this was only temporary as the naga broke through the net with ease, then raised its maw to smite Versailles and Zinsy.
Ever an Enemy of EmpireEditVermillion Versailles died as he lived: with hate in his heart against the Empire, attempting to protect those he loved. While it would also take the effort of Zinsy's new clockwork dog, Buster, Zinsy narrowly managed to dodge death, but life was not so fortunate for Versailles. Overwhelmed by the blast of electricity and his own electrical powers as he struggled against it, Versailles fell against the onslaught, knowing that he had failed to avenge Jamie as Billingsworth watched him die. In triumph the Novalbian officer raised Versailles' black body up high, mocking him and roaring in triumph.
This victory was short-lived, however, with Lignus felling the bone naga and Saara embedding an acid arrow in Billingsworth's eye. In the end, Versailles' hate had consumed so much that he could not refuse to choose to raise his arm against Billingsworth in a clearly-uneven fight, a fight which could have caused the death of his entire crew, and in the end, he died not far from where he had provoked Billingsworth those weeks ago, nor far from where the family of his old navigator, Jamie, lived.
Versailles' comrades, Lignus and Zinsy in particular, mourned his death, with Saara also feeling some sadness. In the wake of his death the leadership vacuum was filled immediately by Lignus, who bore his charred corpse back to the Nightingale, where it lay in state in the Captain's cabin, but eventually Saara made a play for the captaincy of the Nightingale, contested by Lignus as it made for Turagoa, to give Versailles a burial amongst the Fortune Isles' finest captains.
Personality and TraitsEdit
One-eyed, and white-haired, Vermillion Versailles holds a great hatred of Novo Albia and all her lackeys, and distrusts Imperials in general. He is very protective of the crew with whom he has sailed with for a while - namely Lignus and Zinsy - and is particularly protective of Zinsy, with whom he has sailed with for several months at least. As a result of his distrust of Imperials, he has found it hard to connect and often verbally spars with Saara. In the past, as part of the chase by the Lanessa, Versailles nearly lost an arm to gunfire but it was healed by Lignus. Zinsy has a great deal of fondness for both Zinsy and Lignus, though in his will he has bequeathed the ship to Zinsy due to her preference for machinery, despite Lignus being the ship's pilot.
Unlike the rest of his crew Versailles is considerably taller than the rest due to being a human, which has led him to sticking out like a sore thumb. This height disadvantage has also caused him to become somewhat dependent on his shipmates for assistance when sneaking. Due to his height, Versailles also often hits his heads on ceilings on the ship, which after repairs by Zinsy has caused them to be increasingly lower than they were initially. He is also the only one in the crew to not have night vision and to be a smoker, but he does realise the value of their night vision and so does not like disturbing it, though this can sometimes necessitate him being lead around by them when not using a very small light source.
Apparently the eye he keeps under his eyepatch is functional, but he keeps the eyepatch over it for night vision; he has yet to use this in practice.
He is also an alcoholic.
He is an old friend of Waldein Samkeit's and is wanted on six landshards with the penalty of hanging by the neck until dead, and wanted on punishment of hanging, drawing and quartering on Trewall.
Versailles fights in combat (when not down) with a hand-and-a-half sabre and buckler.
Vermillion's class is in fact that of a stone sorcerer, but to fit with the setting it was altered to be an air sorcerer.