Valdís, also known as the Night Queen, is an antagonist of one of the books of A Tale of Lost Swords. She is a vampire, a sub-species of humanity created when the Seven Heroes overlooked giving them certain attributes during the recreation of the world.
At some point during the series, Valdis killed the Authority of Life and took the Sword of Darkness from him. She would then go on to try and conquer a realm of Mundus to create a haven for her kind.
Sadly for her, this goal ran counter to Erebus Orestes' goal of conquering various countries to force the world to acknowledge and do something about the monster invasion, and so the two clashed in several battles. Eventually, Erebus would enter his final confrontation with Valdis and emerge victorious, having disarmed her of the Sword of Darkness and used it to transform her body into formless shadows before erasing the shadows with the Sword of Light. However, the experience with vampires and their plight of endless tortuous hunger prompted him to fulfil her dream in her stead and create a haven for them, later using the Swords of Life and Death to bestow on (most of) them a concept of life and death, curing their vampirism.
It was eventually revealed that Valdis had not truly died during their final confrontation. Although Valdis's body had been completely erased, and with it her "life stock" and ability to regenerate, her soul had remained immortal even through the experience. Simultaneously more and less than a ghost - who create shells of ectoplasm in human form for themselves - Valdis was a Pure Soul, a purely spiritual entity. Trapped as an invisible entity unable to interact or communicate with the world around her for several years, she eventually overcame her hatred and simply watched as Erebus built a world for both humans and vampires and cared for her daughter in her stead, eventually admitting to herself that he had likely done a better job than she could have. Upon Erebus becoming aware of her existence, she became something of a spirit advisor to him.
Valdis' soul would eventually pass through the Heaven's Gate created by Erebus, along with most of the world, leaving the slowly collapsing Spiral behind forever.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Valdis's primary goal is to create a place where the race of vampires can live happily and free from the general prejudice and violence that the rest of humanity holds against them. However, she still holds a deep, if justified hatred for humanity, and her methods to achieve her goal involve needlessly torturous massacres, overthrowing of establish kingdoms and the enslavement of survivors to be used as blood banks and breeding grounds for future supplies of lifeforce.
- Horror Hunger: Vampires have an insatiable hunger for "life", which most often comes in the form of blood from other humans (though it isn't the only source). This hunger never truly goes away, but for a time after the last feeding, it remains at a level that can be suppressed. However, if a vampire goes for more than a couple days without feeding, the hunger will rise to the point where it's all a vampire can do to prevent themselves tearing open the jugular of the closest person, and if someone with an open wound walks by... Also, it feels really really euphoric for vampires to feel like they have life in them in the few hours between feeding and the hunger returning, so some just go ahead and feed on humans without restraint just to stop themselves feeling so hollow and hungry.
- Our Vampires are Different: They aren't cursed or due to black magic or anything like that. They're a "species" of humanity who didn't have all the right Divine Words incorporated in their creation, and so they lack the concepts of life and death, which makes them seek out sources of life and death more or less unconsciously. They aren't affected by sunlight and they don't transform others into vampire with their bites, nor is it only blood they can feed on, but they're called vampires because blood is usually the easiest option and they're similar to the beings from Old World legends.
- Healing Factor: All vampires have it, being able to regenerate by using up some or all of however much stock of life they've absorbed. Valdis in particular has an incredibly powerful healing factor, as she's absorbed a lot of life from her conquests.
- From A Single Cell: Vampires can regenerate from being reduced to nothing but dust so long as they have enough lifeforce in stock. Or the dust comes in contact with a new source of lifeforce to absorb. Completely annihilating Valdis with a point blank Excaliblast-rip-off from the Sword of Light wasn't enough to kill her, and it took having the Sword of Darkness disarmed and rammed through her body to transform her into nothing but insubstantial shadows that was then blown away by the Sword of Light to finally put her down.
- Even Evil Has Standards: She beheads one of her soldiers who was attempting to rape a woman he captured and strings his body up on a giant spear of darkness as an example of what her army was absolutely not allowed to do. She also keeps her word once she's given it, even if it would be better for her not to.
- Evil Is Sterile: Played with. Valdis is a little more complicated than simply evil, as are all vampires, but all vampires are unable to naturally procreate due to lacking "life". Instead, they "reproduce" by swapping a significant portion of blood with another person, which alters the person enough that their own "life" (and thus "death") is eroded away, eventually turning the person into a vampire themselves. Valdis has a child herself, and it is a mystery of just how this is possible for quite some time - is the child hers from before she was turned? Is the child someone else's child that she turned? Did she somehow manage to overcome the vampire's inability to create life?
- Death Seeker: All vampires are this unconsciously. This tends to give them a higher tendency towards violence and lower sense of self-preservation / risk normally. If they are completely starved of life though, they turn into mindless berserkers who simply throw themselves at everything in site that moves without any thought of self-preservation or injury, half fueled by hunger for lifeforce, half fueled by desire to find something that can kill them and provoke it into killing them. In this state they'll even throw themselves on blades and spikes in an attempt to kill themselves. It doesn't work. Valdis though, is even more of this than usual vampires due to the suffering she's been through in her "life"time.
- Miles To Go Before I Sleep: Only her goals to care for her daughter, and create a haven for vampires have stopped her from just locking herself underground and setting herself on fire until her stock of life runs out and she burns to ash (the typical way to "kill" a vampire). When she's on her own and not leading her armies or spending time with her daughter, she fantasises about doing just that, and she planned to once she had created the haven and her daughter had grown to self-sufficiency.
They speak of sweet dreams in the ashes. When flesh and mind burn away, only dreams are left. Peaceful dreams, of a better life. When all else is done... can I at last see those dreams...?
|~ One of Valdis's thoughts during her downtime.|
- Black Knight: The armour she generally wears invokes this. Justified as it's actually a construct she made out of shadows (which are more durable than normal armour materials due to being held together by the Sword of Darkness) so of course it's black.
- Blood Knight: Part of being a vampire. They all love a good fight. Some hide it more than others though, and in fact how well you can hide your desire for battle is a mark of prestige in vampire society. Valdis doesn't bother to hide how much she loves battle, gleefully screaming battle cries as she rides into the fray.
TEAR THEM APART. REND THEIR FLESH AND DRINK THEIR BLOOD. LET THE HUMANS KNOW THEIR SINS ARE NOT FORGIVEN. AND WHEN THE SHADOW OF DEATH LIES UPON THEM, LET THEM KNOW THE NIGHT QUEEN WAS THEIR END.
|~ Valdis commanding her army|
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Has a daughter who she cares for deeply, despite their circumstances, and is the main motivator in her aim to create a place where vampires can live happily and no one needs to go through what she did.
- Mama Bear: Another vampire who wanted to usurp Valdis realised how much value she placed on her daughter and rather stupidly tried to threaten the daughter to coerce her into giving him the Sword of Darkness. Valdis tore him limb from limb with her bare hands, drained his stocks of life from him until he couldn't regenerate, and threw his still conscious head into a pit.
- Casting a Shadow: Her main powers, based on her ownership of the Sword of Darkness. Ironically, while she does tend to bring the night with her wherever she goes, she doesn't actually need to, as vampires in this setting aren't adversely affected by sunlight or strengthened in the dark. It's more just for the intimidation factor as a wall of darkness closes in on your village...
- Hates Being Touched: Wears full plate armour outside of battle for a reason. Only person she accepts direct contact from is her daughter, and even then she shows some minor discomfort in her body language.
Touch me again and I'll tear off your arm
- Determinator: Absolutely unbending in achieving her goals, pushing through all opposition and attempts to make her back down, with a few exceptions (such as not breaking her word even when it would clash with achieving her goal). She keeps her own Hunger under control for much longer between feedings than other vampires through her sheer willpower, refuses to give up and die no matter how much she wants to, and through sheer unwillingness to give up, resisted being transformed into a shadow for a few moments after being impaled by the Sword of Darkness, and even allowed her to maintain her humanoid form when her body was nothing but a shadow for one final attempt to kill Erebus before he finally dispersed her for good with the Sword of Light.
- Not So Different: Valdis calls Erebus out on this during their final battle, telling him that the only difference between them is he was born a human and she was not. Both had their homes destroyed by an invasion of hostile enemies and lost everything almost they cared about, becoming driven primarily by anger and desire for vengeance against these enemies. Both ventured into a Dead God's Tomb, defeated a Seraphim and claimed one of the God Swords. Both became leaders not out of any desire to actually rule and control, but to force their people to help them achieve their goals. In a way, Valdis's ultimate goal was actually more "humane" than Erebus's - she wanted to create a haven for vampires to live in peace where humans wouldn't attack and kill them, while Erebus simply wanted to exterminate all monsters.
You think you're better than me? You think you are nobler? You are me! You seek vengeance on those who killed your family and destroyed your life, and with the power of a Sword you would rule the world to do it! We're the same you and I. Only the circumstances of our birth were different. Because you were a human. And I ... was a 'monster'.
|~ Valdis to Erebus|
- Evil Counterpart: For a given definition of "evil". As above, Erebus and Valdis share many similarities in their backstory and what drove them to the point they are today. Further reinforced by how Erebus wielded the Sword of Light during their final battle while Valdis wielded the Sword of Darkness.
Powers and Stats
Tier: 7-A | 11-C
Name: Valdís, The Night Queen
Origin: A Tale of Lost Swords
Gender: Female | Genderless
Classification: Vampire | Pure Soul
Powers and Abilities:
Superhuman Physical Characteristics, Extrasensory Perception (due to their instinct to seek out life and death, vampires are capable of sensing sources of lifeforce around them, as well as the strength of the lifeforce. They can also smell blood from long distances away. Their attunement to death also gives them limited precognition as they can sense omens of incoming death), Minor Precognition (has heightened instincts regarding omens of incoming death, for herself and others, which can function to warn her of incoming lethal attacks), Enhanced Senses (wielding the Sword of Darkness gives Valdis the ability to see perfectly in the dark), Darkness Manipulation (via the Sword of Darkness she can manipulate darkness down to its concept. She can attack and defend with primitive constructs of solid darkness such as blades and spikes with Danmaku levels of frequency, tear away the darkness inside people away from them to cause internal damage, and bring the night with her to shroud her surroundings in a heavy darkness that not even enhanced senses and extrasensory perception can see through), Durability Negation (can tear the "darkness" out of others, which causes their bodies to be torn apart as a fundamental part of their being is removed from them), Invisibility (can shroud herself in a darkness that turns her invisible, even to Enhanced Senses and ESP), Mind Manipulation (can bring "darkness" on people's minds, dulling their perception and thought processes. The Sword of Darkness can also swallow up the "light" of people's hope and courage, causing them to fall into despair and terror), Portal Creation (can turn shadows into portals to travel vast distances, can also reflect attacks by teleporting attacks through portals), Transformation (can turn into a Non-Corporeal shadow for a few seconds at a time to dodge attacks, which cannot be hit even by Artifact Weapons which can disperse non-corporeal spirits), Soul Manipulation (the God Swords cut both body and soul, even breaking through the Authority of Dust's barrier of all the souls who had died in his Tomb), Transmutation (can transform incoming attacks into harmless darkness, can transform people into darkness that quickly disperses, effectively erasing their physical bodies), Summoning (can summon Non-Corporeal spirits of darkness to attack her enemies, these spirits can also possess the corpses of the dead and use those corpses' powers), Magic, Blood Manipulation and Absorption (can use Divine Words to drain the blood of all nearby beings towards herself, then drink it to absorb their life. Can absorb many forms of life through contact alone), Statistics Amplification (can vastly increase her speed and strength by absorbing sources of life - the greater the life force of the enemy she is absorbing blood from, the greater the boost), Duplication (can remotely create and control very basic clones [combat-inapplicable] of herself out of darkness to communicate over long distances, or act as decoys if they don't need to do any quick or complex movements), limited Power Nullification (the Sword of Darkness swallows up all "light" in its presence, including light based powers), Regeneration (Mid-High with a sufficient stock of "life", vampires can regenerate from being reduced to dust. Valdís in particular has a massive "stock" of life, such that Erebus felt even if he repeatedly "killed" her for a thousand years she would not die), Immortality (Types 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 - Vampires lack the Divine Word (concept) for "life" within them, and subsequently also lack a concept of "Death", as things must be alive for them to experience death. This allows vampires to "survive" even if they are reduced to dust, though they are not generally conscious while dust, and even regenerate if exposed to a source of life such as blood from a living being), Resistance to Madness Manipulation (barely affected by hearing knowing Divine Words, when even a single one can bring madness to lesser minds), Mind Manipulation (mental strength like that required to resist the insanity of knowing the Divine Words is equatable to the mental strength that allows people to resist mind manipulation), Soul Manipulation (can withstand Chaos infecting her soul, can withstand channeling large amounts of magical energy which can burn away the soul, can take hits from the God Swords which strike at body and soul equally), Transmutation (resisted being transmuted into darkness by the Sword of Darkness for a couple seconds, and could still think and act as a living shadow for a time after the transmutation until the darkness of her being was blown away by the Sword of Light), Life Manipulation and Death Manipulation (due to lacking both concepts - was unaffected by the Authority of Life using both Life Manipulation and Death Manipulation on her), Law Manipulation and Magic (holding the Sword of Light grants resistance to magic - which is done through rewriting the Spiral's laws - even magic that normally negates resistances), Light Manipulation, Fear Manipulation, Conceptual Manipulation of light-related concepts, (due to them being equal and opposite, wielding the Sword of Darkness grants resistance to all the powers of the Sword of Light)
Has lost the majority of her previous powers due to losing her body and the Sword of Darkness. Powers now are Non-Corporeal (as a Pure Soul, she cannot even be touched by ghosts who are also non-corporeal spiritual beings), Invisibility (as a Pure Soul, she cannot be normally seen or perceived, even by invisible ghosts who can perceive each other), Cosmic Awareness (A Pure Soul is unbound from the limitations of human form, including the "storage space" of its brain and sensory organs, allowing them to perceive and comprehend the whole of the Spiral at once, including the higher and lower dimensional Far North and Far South), pseudo-Resistance to Memory Manipulation (As a Pure Soul, Valdis is unbound from the physical limitations of the brain, allowing her to remember anything that she has forgotten with perfect clarity as soon as she desires to), Immortality (Type 5), Resistance to Soul Manipulation, Mind Manipulation, Life Manipulation, Death Manipulation, and Madness Manipulation (retains these resistances even as a Pure Soul)
Attack Potency: Mountain level (defeated and killed the Authority of Life, who should be comparable to other Seraphim. Fought with Erebus Orestes and swallowed up and nullified the Sword of Light's excaliblast rip off with a construct of darkness) | Low Microverse Level (unable to normally interact with the physical world in any capacity. Described herself as "less even than the denizens of Farthest South", which refers to 0-dimensional beings)
Speed: Massively Hypersonic (fought with Erebus Orestes and a Seraphim) | At least Massively Hypersonic, possibly Immeasurable (still able to keep up with Erebus and converse with him mid-flight. Stated she could and had freely explored the Far North, which is composed of higher dimensions and requires the ability to move on higher dimensional axes of movement to "freely explore")
Lifting Strength: Superhuman | Below Average (unable to interact with the physical world)
Striking Strength: Mountain Class | Below Average Class (unable to interact with the physical world)
Durability: Mountain level (took hits from the Authority of Life during their fight. Blocked attacks from Erebus Orestes) | Unknown, possibly at most Mountain Level (as a Pure Soul she cannot be touched by anything except for the God Swords, nor does she have any body capable of being touched. However, she did note that Erebus could use the God Swords to kill her if he wished, though it is unclear if this involved stabbing her with them)
Stamina: Extremely high. Vampires stamina is linked to their stock of life, and as long as they do not lose this stock of life through their regeneration, they will not tire. Additionally, even once they have lost this stock of life, vampires can fight on with "lethal" injuries due to being unable to naturally die. | Limitless. Pure Souls do not tire.
Range: Tens of kilometres (can affect this wide and area with her darkness manipulation) | Unknown, probably none
Standard Equipment: The Sword of Darkness | None
Intelligence: Fairly high. Has accumulated a large amount of knowledge over her long life. Fairly adept at military battle tactics. | Possibly supergenius. As a Pure Soul, her mind is unrestricted by the brain's limitations, giving her infinite capacity for learning and knowledge accumulation, in addition to her cosmic awareness allowing her to perceive and understand the entire Spiral, including higher and lower dimensional worlds.
Weaknesses: Her stock of life can eventually run dry and thus disable her regeneration, though Erebus felt this could well take a thousand years of repeated "deaths". Her transformation into a non-corporeal shadow will cause her to disperse into darkness if she maintains it for too long. | None notable. The God Swords were noted as being able to kill her in this form, as well as the Curse of Chaos still being able to infect her if she let her guard down near it.
- Vampires in AToLS are not traditional vampires. They are a separate species of being who did not have the concept of "life" given to them when the Seven Heroes repaired the world and re-established its laws and concepts. As a result of never being born with "life", they equally lack the concept of "death". As they lack both life and death, they are unconsciously driven to seek these things, gaining an extreme and never-ending hunger for sources of "life" - most prominently in the form of other being's blood. Should they not have enough "life" within them, their death-seeking urges awaken, and they turn into feral monsters that mindlessly attack anything around them, completely ignoring defense and injury as they attempt to provoke others to kill them. At the same time though, absorbing the life from others increases their strength, speed, durability and how much magic they can channel.