Jason's Human Summoner
A former high-society noble turned to summoning by his obsession with his late wife.
Vicktor and Ellsa
Vicktor Utrecht is the only child of the fourth son of the great Cornelius Utrecht, patriarch of the powerful Utrecht family. Cornelius rose from relative obscurity through war and various dealings to become a trusted and powerful noble within the king’s inner circle, amassing a huge fortune in wealth and land. However, on his death 9/10ths of this fortune went to Vicktor’s uncle Vilham, Cornelius’s first and favored son, with the rest divided amongst a large family. Thus, Vicktor’s parents (George and Ethlinda) grew up accustomed to great wealth and with extremely high tastes – but without the type of fortune necessary to actually back them up. They raised their son in a similar fashion, placing a high emphasis on the finer things in life and the strict differences between the classes (ironic, since they were steadily falling out of the upper echelons of society).
Vicktor grew up alone most of his life; his parents were generally more occupied with their own concerns and had borne a child more as an accessory than from love. He had few peers and most of the other children he knew were related. Due to his position within the family, he was often treated poorly, especially by his older male cousins. His mistreatment at their cruel hands taught him quick reflexes and drove home the lessons of self-reliance and self-focused morality that his parents had already made clear.
As Vicktor grew older, his attentions began to focus on a pretty, young commoner girl named Ellsa he saw in the temple from time to time. An early fascination turned into a full-blown obsession; her lowly station and his family’s place in society prevented him from even the most casual contact, and yet still he desired her. He was driven; as someone accustomed to be indulged, what he wanted most was the one thing he could not have. He followed her life eagerly from afar, until one day to his great dismay he found out she was to be married to another local commoner, a young boy who worked in a smithy.
Jealous beyond reason, Vicktor considered having the young man killed, but realized this would only martyr him in Ellsa’s eyes. It might even drive her further away as she took solace with her family. So he instead hatched a devious plan. He first used his family’s influence and contacts (meager as they were becoming) to spread vicious rumors and crush the smithy financially, causing the young man to lose his income while increasing his time away from home looking for more work. At this point, Vicktor approached young Ellsa. Using his substantial charms and claims of wealth, he lured her to his home on the promise of offering her a job as a servant there, knowing she was desperate for money to help her struggling fiance. Preying on her misfortunes, he agreed to help her financially only in exchange for her chastity. Backed into a corner by Vicktor’s powers of persuasion, she felt she had no other options. He then let it be known around town through various indirect methods that she had slept with another man, an accusation that eventually made its way back to her fiance. He broke off their relationship immediately and cast her out, while her family similarly held her in disgust. Shamed, and with her life and chances of being married ruined, Vicktor came back to the young girl and apologized vehemently and offered to make amends by marrying her. Ellsa had no other choice, and Vicktor’s charms seemed to redeem him. She consented, and they were married within the week.
His family was distraught; they very nearly disowned Vicktor and chose to stop speaking to him. They never once acknowledged his commoner bride. However, this was already so similar to their typical interactions Vicktor didn’t care. Sadly, this situation was never resolved as his parents and several of their guests died tragically when their family home caught fire during a prolonged revelry. In truth, as their fortunes dwindled Vicktor’s parents’ behaviors became increasingly erratic and self-destructive. While it is assumed the blaze started on accident during a night of drunken debauchery, the real truth will never be known. In the end, most of their waning lands and fortunes went to pay off their substantial debt. The remaining meager sum passed to Vicktor, along with a small amount of land and a remote hunting lodge, where he lived with his wife. Vicktor was a controlling husband and a cruel perfectionist, but he also doted on Ellsa. He loved her as much as a man like him was capable of love. She, in turn, accepted her lot in life and tried her best to be a good wife. Barely a year into their marriage, however, their debts were becoming troublesome. One irate collector who had been blown off one too many times (and knew more about Vicktor’s past than he was aware) decided to let it slip one night in a bar to Ellsa’s former fiance that it was in fact Vicktor who had taken her virginity. Infuriated, the young man challenged Vicktor to a private duel. Possessing some talent with the magical arts, Vicktor thought himself easily the better of the two men and accepted, despite Ellsa’s tearful protests. However, the young man was a strong fighter in his own right, and quickly bested Vicktor. As he rose to strike a final blow, young Ellsa screamed and threw herself between the two, absorbing the fatal strike and falling to the ground. Mortified, the young man fled into the night. Vicktor held her dying body in his arms, ashamed and confused that one who he had wronged so badly had sacrificed herself to save him. Her last look into his tearful eyes was with a kind smile.
Anguished beyond consolation, Vicktor liquefied most of his remaining fortunes to pay for Ellsa’s resurrection. However, the ritual failed. The cleric at the temple counseled Vicktor that perhaps her soul did not wish to return. Refusing to accept this answer, Vicktor cursed the temple and stormed out, never to return. Once again, his only desire was out of his grasp. His smoldering obsession quickly returned.
He dove into the study of the arcane arts; where divine magic and the power of others had failed him, he was sure arcane, through his own abilities, would not. He focused on his natural talent with summoning creatures – perhaps he could summon her soul to him! He worked for years, slowly burning through the last of his fortune. But the answer he was looking for always eluded him.
Eventually, his determination and experimentation to summon a soul began to draw the notice of a different sort of being. One day, alone in his lab, a devil appeared to Vicktor as the result of one of his spells. He offered no bargain, but promised only knowledge. He helped enlighten Vicktor to a specific type of summoning: how to draw forth a powerful spirit that can be bound to one’s self and shaped to one’s will. The devil made no request, and left once the path had become clear. Deep into his obsession and hungry for answers, Vicktor cared not for the source of the knowledge, but immediately began to develop this new-found power.
In time, Vicktor was able to call forth and control an eidolon. He causes it to take the form of his dear Ellsa, calls it by her name and dresses it in her clothes. He disguises it as her and most people never question it. He uses it for his personal protection as he believes her wishes would have been; its strength is powerful, and in turn he uses his arcane knowledge to boost its abilities further.
In truth, however, the eidolon is merely reflecting Vicktor’s own thoughts and desires. He controls its every action with his thoughts, and it merely behaves as he thinks it should behave. In a cruel twist, he also cannot perfectly shape the eidolon to his exact wishes when he calls it, and so each time the hair is a slightly different color or length; the height is off by a few inches; something is always out of place. For a perfectionist, it is maddening. He often uses his talents in disguise to shape it in favor of his ever-fading memory, but it’s never exactly right. And most sadly, due to its nature, the creature cannot exist on this plane without Vicktor’s conscious thought: when he falls asleep, it does not exist. In this way, he will never be able to wake up next to his pretty Ellsa’s touch ever again.
Vicktor presses on, each day continuing his search for just the right spell or bit of knowledge to help make his illusion of Ellsa’s return complete. Meanwhile his family’s fortune has been completely depleted, and he requires more gold to continue his research and to restore his standard of living. He has begun to travel in search of wealth, relying on his magical arts to accomplish what he can – for in the end, he lives only for Ellsa… or more truthfully, for his own selfish desire.