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Having emerged from the storm of youth coldhearted and ruthless, Benedikta Harman—Dominant of the Eikon Garuda, Warden of the Wind—turned her talent for swordplay and subterfuge into a command of Waloed's elite intelligencers. It is on a mission to find the elusive second Eikon of Fire that she crosses paths with a like-minded Clive and is forced to face her past.

Online description

Benedikta Harman is an antagonist and boss in Final Fantasy XVI. She is a spy from Waloed, leading the Royal Intelligencers, and Dominant of the Eikon Garuda. She loyally follows her king, King Barnabas, but is ruthless and vindictive toward most other people.

History[]

FF16 Benedikta's Pendent

Benedikta's pendent, once belong to her former lover, Cid.

Benedikta was born to a poor family in 845 in the countryside of Waloed, and her family sold her to a wealthy family to act as a servant girl when she was six years old.[1] When she was fifteen, her master almost killed her after wrongly accusing her of theft, but Benedikta awoke as the Dominant of Garuda and fled. Attacked by bandits, she was rescued by Cidolfus Telamon[1] and began accompanying him. They came in the services of Barnabas Tharmr, king of Waloed, with Cid as his lord commander and Benedikta a regular soldier, gaining the surname "Harman" from the king, "Harman", meaning "servant of God".[1] At age eighteen, she joined the covert operations department and was deployed to make contact with Hugo Kupka, the Dominant of Titan and an influential man in the Dhalmekian Republic. In two years she had started a relationship with Kupka and was promoted to the head of the Royal Intelligencers. When Benedikta was twenty-two,[1] Cid fell out with Barnabas and left Waloed, causing Benedikta to develop a grudge against him.

It is unknown if her feelings for Hugo were genuine, or if she was just manipulating him. Her feelings for Cid remain strong though she resents him for leaving Waloed, and she keeps the pendant he had given her always on her person.[1]

Thirteen years after the Night of Flames, Benedikta accompanied Barnabas to Dhalmekia, where she witnessed a battle between Dhalmekia and the Iron Kingdom, and a clash between Titan and Shiva. Benedikta led her intelligencers in an attempt to seek out and capture Dominants; her first target was apparently Shiva, but she disappeared. Soon after she took on rumors about a Dominant of Fire, who apparently emerged thirteen years ago and killed the Phoenix, having been witnessed in Sanbreque, and began to search for him.

While on her mission, she encountered her former companion, Cidolfus Telamon, and his new companion, Clive Rosfield. Seeing that they were searching the same quarry as her, Benedikta fruitlessly attempted to persuade Cid to return. Benedikta left her followers to deal with the intrusion, while she continued to Lostwing to search for the Dominant of Fire.

The following night, Cid and Clive caught up with her, and she summoned her Egi Chirada to battle them. Clive impressed Benedikta for defeating her familiar, but fled before Clive could finish her off. Taking refuge in a nearby Sanbreque fortress, Caer Norvent, Benedikta captured the Dominant of Fire, yet was unaware that this particular Dominant was not Ifrit's, but Phoenix's: Joshua Rosfield. She offered him a place in Barnabas's kingdom, threatening his retainer's life as further incentive, but the Dominant remained silent. Clive and Cid infiltrated the fort and Benedikta challenged Clive herself, using her powers as the Dominant of Garuda. Clive defeated her, to Benedikta's disbelief, and unknowingly absorbed Garuda's essence to himself. The fort began to crumble when Joshua broke free during the commotion, and Benedikta, hysterical at realizing she was unable to call on Garuda's power, was spirited away by her second-in-command.

Depressed at her powerlessness and fearing she was now useless to her king, Benedikta was all but willing to die, yet her followers refused to leave her. They were ambushed by bandits; everyone but Benedikta was killed. Her grief turned into immense hatred towards Clive, and this surge of emotion caused her seemingly dormant Dominant powers to go out of control, and she transformed into an out of control Garuda. She summoned a massive storm that would lay waste to the countryside. Clive, who was retreating from the fort, braved the storm and came face to face with the Eikon of Wind. Clive managed to hold out on his own until he suddenly primed Ifrit, leveling the playing field. As Ifrit, Clive killed Garuda, leaving Benedikta's corpse laying on the field.

Benedikta's remains were recovered by Barnabas who had her dismembered, delivering her head to Hugo Kupka to send him into a rage, as it would serve the will of Barnabas's master, Ultima. Infuriated at the loss of his lover, Hugo embarked on a crusade to hunt down Cid, having been informed he had killed Benedikta.

Characteristics[]

Appearance[]

CGBenedikta&Garuda

Benedikta and her Eikon, Garuda.

Benedikta is a young woman with a curvaceous build. She has blonde hair styled in a long bob, and wears a black leather jumpsuit with a v-shaped neckline adorned with long white feathers or fur. She has hazel eyes. She keeps her sword in a holster on her belt that also wraps around her left thigh. Her fingernails are painted yellow.

Personality[]

Benedikta is initially cold, seductive, domineering, and ruthless, showing little to no mercy towards her enemies. She values the loyalty and skill of her soldiers, but should they display incompetence, Benedikta does not hesitate to execute them. She believes in absolute loyalty; a prisoner who once tried selling out his comrades was executed because, from Benedikta's point of view, the prisoner showed a willingness to betray others and could not be trusted to stay loyal to the kingdom. She herself displays a great deal of loyalty in her king, Barnabas Tharmr, and supports his dream of making a new world. She thought highly of Cidolfus Telamon when they served together under Barnabas, but developed a grudge against him after he had a falling out with the king and deserted Waloed. When meet again years later, Benedikta tried to convince Cid to return to Waloed, only to be disappointed and angry when he refused and began to speak ill of Barnabas. Cid notes that Benedikta was not the person he once knew after being influenced by Barnabas.

Benedikta has many lovers, including Hugo Kupka, an ally of Waloed, and the Dominant of Titan, who dreamed of one day ruling over the world with Benedikta at his side. She also graced the bed of her king, but it does not appear Barnabas was in love with her. Whether she was in denial about it due to him deserting Waloed, Benedikta's true love may have been Cid, who once rescued her from captivity. However, any love she may have harbored for Cid was not enough to overcome her insecurities.

Benedikta is arrogant and sure of her abilities as Dominant of Garuda, which leads her to scorn her opponents. This leads her to underestimate Clive, initially viewing him as a Bearer, something beneath her. As Clive puts up a fight, wounds her, and eventually defeats her, Benedikta loses her composure and focus, leading to a temper tantrum, ranting how it is "impossible" a Branded could defeat her.

After Clive absorbs Garuda's aether from Benedikta, leading Benedikta to temporarily lose her ability to use the powers of wind, she goes through a fear-induced breakdown, wondering what will become of her, revealing that she is insecure of her worth in the world, especially towards Barnabas. She begins to murmur to herself on what Barnabas will do to her now that she no longer has Garuda's power, dreading the possibility her king will discard her. After nearly being taken by bandits as new "property", Benedikta gives into her fear, losing control over her powers, and primes Garuda without being able to control her, leading to the Eikon running like a wild, frenzied predator.

Abilities[]

Benedikta Harman from FFXVI ss (2)

Benedikta semi-primes.

Benedikta is implied to be skilled in espionage, being the leader of Waloed's intelligencers. Her true power is the callousness toward human life, which allows her to quickly and emotionlessly discard any person she considers to be in her way. She is skilled in swordsmanship, though in her work as a spy usually avoids direct confrontation, and when she does, she fights using magic.

Having awakened as the Dominant of Garuda, the Warden of Wind, Benedikta can use wind magicks and become her Eikon, both partially in a semi-prime, and fully when she primes her entire flesh. Benedikta considers her Egis her sisters, feathered humanoid monsters that she can call upon to help her. She can light her cigarette with a press of her fingertip, so not all magic she wields is wind-aspected.

Gameplay[]

Benedikta is fought as a boss a couple times. She is fought in her semi-primed state in Lostwing and Caer Norvent, and as Garuda in the Eye of the Tempest. She is fast and uses wind abilities.

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Other appearances[]

Final Fantasy Brave Exvius[]

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Etymology and cultural allusion[]

Final Fantasy XVI Ultimania reveals that Benedikta's surname, "Harman", was bestowed to her by Barnabas when she came to serve in the royal army, and means "servant of God", likely referring to the Circle of Malius faith that Barnabas himself ardently follows. Out of universe, the surname Harman is of Germanic origin and means "protector".

King Barnabas granting Benedikta a surname may allude to the old practice of the emperor of Japan granting surnames that the clan would then become known by: Sei was originally the patrilineal surname granted by the emperor as a title of male rank. These were relatively rare types of surname, and most of the medieval noble clans trace their lineage either directly to these sei, or to the courtiers of these sei.

Citations[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Final Fantasy XVI Ultimania
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