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Reynardine

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This page is about the character, for the chapter of the same name, see Chapter 3: Reynardine

When I wear this symbol, I wear it with pride.

–Renard,Chapter 43, Page 27


Renard currently known as Reynardine (Renner-deen.)[1] is an etheric fox demi-god with the ability to possess others' bodies. He is currently imprisoned within Antimony Carver's stuffed wolf doll.

History

Early Life

According to Tom, Renard originally lived in France along with Ysengrin. [2] He and the wolf were mostly normal animals that had enough magic [3] to occasionally cause mischief among the mortals.[4] When Coyote arrived in Europe, he and Ysengrin joined up with him because they wanted to see what the trickster god was up to.[5]

At Gillitie Wood

The three demigods then traveled to Gillitie Wood, and were present when Coyote split the forest from the court. As time went on, he, Coyote and Ysengrin became authority figures of some sort among the forest dwellers.[6] Coyote however, being the oldest and most powerful of the three; was in charge with Renard and Ysengrin as his subordinates.
Coyote renard
During his days in the wood, Renard was one of the most knowledgeable and skilled in matters of human interaction, he talked seemingly freely with both members of the Court and the Wood. Unfortunately, this knowledge led to his downfall as he found himself madly in love with Antimony's mother Surma. In order to woo Surma in person, Renard requested the ability to possess bodies from Coyote, who immediately agreed - but to Renard's distress, the ability was flawed. After leaving a body, the original user perished instead of regaining control. After much persuasion by Coyote, Renard followed through with his plans and stole a young man's body.[7] This plan failed utterly, leading to Renard's capture and imprisonment. From then on, he was known as the demon Reynardine. Coyote has since kept Reynardine's original body preserved in the forest, and once told Antimony to tell him it is there waiting for him.

At Gunnerkrigg Court

Years later, now in the body of a Rogat Orjak and desperate to see the stars again, Reynardine finally breaks free from his prison. He crashes into the roof of the school, injuring himself and resulting in an emergency evacuation of the students. He encounters Antimony Carver for the first time, however he initially mistakes her for her mother, as the two look so similar. After Antimony faints from blood loss, he is confronted once more by his jailer - Sir Eglamore - and quickly recaptured.

The next day, Antimony, curious to know how he knew her mother, comes to visit him in secret while his jailer is away. After a short conversation, he then attempts to possess her body, but Eglamore returns and stops him from doing so. Unbeknownst to the two, he manages to escape in the form of Antimony's stuffed wolf plush.

Later, during the Year 7 Science fair he sabotages all the other science projects but Antimony's friend Kat's. When the two girls investigate the destruction, they discover that Reynardine possessed Antimony's wolf plush and was the one who destroyed the other projects. When Antimony remembers that he tried to kill her, he replies he can do nothing to harm her now. Due to her ownership of the wolf plush, she owns him him now, represented by the mark on his forehead, the alchemical symbol for Antimony.He reveals that he destroyed the projects to earn her favor.

Relationships

Antimony Carver

Possessing Annie Tom has deliberately and explicitly left it an open question whether Reynardine was attempting to possess Annie or whether the doll was his true target. True to this spirit there are several strong arguments on either side.

PRO:

  • Reynardine says explicitly, "I do need your help. In fact, what I need is... YOUR BODY!" just before he leaves Sivo's body and moves toward Annie.
  • Also he yells, "NO!" and "Argh! Damn it!" in apparent frustration when thwarted by Eglamore.
  • He has taken over a human before with no known remorse.
  • He was obviously in a certain amount of pain being bound and is perhaps half-mad with imprisonment.
  • Saving Sivo may have involved Reynardine's death and Reynardine would have no doubts that the court would gladly make that trade.
  • All the experienced adults who know him have no problems believing that he would do such a thing.
  • Reynardine blames Annie for Surma's death (it's obvious that he knows that this was an inevitable consequence of Annie's birth).
  • Reynardine seems to have tried to take Annie when they first met on the rooftop just before Annie fainted, judging by his glowing eyes. If his intent were to take the toy, he could have done it then quite easily.
  • He claims to regret the day he nearly possessed Annie.[8]
  • He admits that he was going to kill her, not only to escape, but for her powers.[9]

CON:

  • Reynardine was (is) deeply in love with Surma and mourns her death. Presumably some of this feeling would attach to Surma's daughter. Recall that Annie resembles Surma so much (perhaps in an etheric sense) that both Reynardine and Coyote mistake her for her mother.
  • In a broader sense, he loves humans in general (according to Coyote). Tom has confirmed that Reynard regrets his murders 'every minute of the day'.
  • He's very clever and understands humans well. Surely in a few years time he could have engineered some sort of escape. Even better, he could break the ownership bonds between Annie and himself and be a free agent in a conveniently shape shifting body.
  • He knows for certain he was under observation while imprisoned (it only takes a few moments for Eglamore to come back). Taking over the doll without some sort of ruse would have been obvious. Remember that he specifically mentions the toy during his first escape attempt.
  • Reynard seems genuinely fond of Annie from very early on. Going from a position where he would willingly sacrifice her to a mentor/friend is huge leap.

Kat

Good Friends.

Surma

Reynardine was very in love with Surma, although Surma did not feel the same way. She and others at the court saw Renard as a bomb waiting to go off. They used Surma as bait to lure him to the court to capture him. In this process, Renard possessed and killed Daniel R Schiff.

Coyote

Coyote likes Renard a great deal, possibly due to their shared status as trickster figures. Despite this Reynardine's feelings towards Coyote are not as great.

Ysengrin

Reynardine's relationship with Ysengrin is complicated. He knew him long before Coyote or anyone at the Court or forest, but they were never really friends. [10] It is possible that Ysengrin resents Renard because Coyote favors him. However, Ysengrin seemed shocked and angered when Coyote revealed that he allowed Renard's capture by the court.

Abilities

Renard Shapeshifting

Reynardine shapeshifting.

Possibly due to the inanimate nature of his current body, Reynardine is capable of manipulating his body to a variety of forms. Initially, this was demonstrated by giving the plush he possessed more anthropomorphic proportions and features, and later by taking on the appearance of a white wolf. To a lesser degree, Reynard has demonstrated this ability by lacing and unlacing the stitching of his arm in order to utilize a set of lockpicks stored there, and on one occasion, took on a larger, highly muscled version of his plush form in an attempt to fluster Annie (which failed). 
Renard Ether

Reynardine's etheric form still looks like his true self.

His behavior in large wolf form tends to be rather more mature than when in small wolf form, and tends to demonstrate greater diplomacy, level headedness, and mental acuity.Perhaps for this reason, in times of danger or stress, Renard typically shifts to his wolf form. Although Reynard is currently possessing a wolf doll and he can transform it into a large and intimidating wolf form[11], he remains a fox in nature. This is demonstrated by his appearance in the ether[12] as well his response when Annie asked if he could howl.[13] There, he also demonstrated pride in his fox nature, claiming a fox's call to be the finest in nature. Judging by her reaction, Annie disagrees.

Demonology

For more information, see Annie's Contract of Ownership Over Reynardine and Renardine's Body-Stealing and Shapeshifting Powers.

There are several rules laid down by Tom about who Reynardine can possess and when:

  • Renard Spirit

    Reynardine's Spirit (Body Stealing Form) Note the symbol.

    The body Reynardine snatches must have eyes of some sort, and they must be open when he possesses it. It doesn't have to be alive; it doesn't even have to be organic. For example, he could possess a painting of someone, as long as that person's eyes were open. Were a body he'd taken to have it's eyes removed, he would be trapped permanently in that body.
  • If Reynardine possesses an object owned by another person, that person assumes complete control over Reynardine. This control lasts until the controller dies, though Reynardine cannot harm him or her. The controller can also disclaim ownership of Reynardine, in which case he would be freed.
  • If the controller gives ownership of the object Reynardine is inhabiting to another person, the recipient gains control over Reynardine.
  • If the object Reynardine inhabits is forcefully taken by another person, the contract is dissolved, not transferred. He is then free to possess a new form.
  • While Reynardine is controlled by someone, he cannot "jump" to another body unless commanded to. If commanded, this would break the control contract, unless the person owns the second object as well.
  • When Reynardine leaves a living body, the body dies. Inanimate objects are unharmed.
  • If dwelling in an inanimate object, Reynardine can change into a form that's different but related to the object's original appearance at will, such as his large wolf form.
  • Reynardine cannot possess Coyote against his will. This may also be true of other gods.

Trivia

Origin

  • Renard likely comes from the medieval trickster figure "Reynard the Fox" (or various spellings). Reynard the Fox is first seen in a mock epic entitled Ysengrimus by the poet Nivardus[14].
  • Reynardine, Renard's current name and the name given to him by Surma, is taken from from the old English ballad "Reynardine".[15]

Symbols

Renards mark

Renard's mark of Ownership.

When Reynardine possesses Annie's toy, the mark on his astral form resembles one of the alchemy symbols for mercury, one of the Three Primes of alchemy. The element was of interest to alchemists due to its liquid state and its ability to easily infuse with other metals and form hardened amalgams, and they believed mercury transcended both solid and liquid states, heaven and earth, life and death.

While in the toy wolf body, his forehead bears the symbol for Antimony, representing Annie's
Renards Original Symbol

Renard's original symbol.

ownership of him. The symbol is mostly shown when he is in his larger (more realistic) wolf form. Antimony also represents humankind's animal nature and was also symbolized by the wolf.

Recently, Reynardine's mark has started to look more like the symbol for Pluto, which is read in alchemy as spirit over mind, transcending matter, and Threat from the Unconscious.

After being transferred to Kat, the symbol on his forehead has changed to be the symbol of The Creator.

Misc

  • Unlike Coyote, Renard is only a few hundred years old.[16]
  • Renard speaks with a mild french accent.[17]

Gallery

FA Renard
Click to view Reynardine's gallery.

List of Appearances

References

  1. Tom Siddell (gunnerkrigg) at Formspring. Dead Link. "How do you pronounce 'Reynardine'?"
  2. Tom Siddell (gunnerkrigg) at Formspring. Dead Link.
  3. http://gunnerkrigg.wikia.com/wiki/Word_of_Tom:_Reynardine#cite_note-59
  4. Tom Siddell (gunnerkrigg) at Formspring. Dead Link.
  5. http://gunnerkrigg.wikia.com/wiki/Word_of_Tom:_Reynardine#cite_note-48
  6. http://gunnerkrigg.wikia.com/wiki/Word_of_Tom:_Reynardine#cite_note-25
  7. Chapter 43, Page 11
  8. Chapter 43, Page 14
  9. Chapter 43, Page 23
  10. Tom Siddell (gunnerkrigg) at Formspring. Dead Link.
  11. Chapter 23, Page 24
  12. Chapter 24, Page 2
  13. Chapter 26, Page 26, "Fox Call"
  14. WP Ref Ysengrimus on Wikipedia
  15. Digital Tradition lyrics for Reynardine
  16. Tom Siddell (gunnerkrigg) at Formspring. Dead Link. "How old are Reynardine and Coyote?"
  17. Tom Siddell (gunnerkrigg) at Formspring. Dead Link. "What do you imagine Reynardine's voice and accent to be like?"

External Links

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