Thursday, February 23, 2012

Final Fantasy VIII~Rinoa Heartilly

Rinoa Heartilly
"Look into my eyes... You're-going-to-like-me... You're-going-to-like-me... Did it work?"

—Rinoa Heartilly to Squall Leonhart
Rinoa Heartilly (Linoa in the French version) is a female protagonist and playable character from Final Fantasy VIII. She is best known for her trademark angel wings printed on the back of her duster sweater and, as such, her "character symbol" is a white feather that signifies the wings. She serves as Squall Leonhart's love interest and awakens as a sorceress halfway through the game.

"I like it like this. I liked having my mom hold me. My dad, too, back when we got along. But now...Squall, you're the one who gives me the most comfort. Comfort and happiness...and annoyance and disappointment, too!"
—Rinoa Heartilly
Rinoa Heartilly is the daughter of Galbadia's military commander Fury Caraway and idol singer Julia Heartilly. When Rinoa was five, Julia died in a car accident. After Julia's death, Rinoa and her father grew steadily apart. By the time she was seventeen, Rinoa had moved away from home and changed her surname to her mother's maiden name. To compound their problems, Rinoa joined the Forest Owls, a group of freedom fighters rebelling against the Galbadian government and its military.
A year before the game's events Rinoa began a romantic relationship with a SeeD cadet named Seifer Almasy from whom she learned more of the mercenary-for-hire service SeeD provides. Rinoa first meets Squall during the SeeD inauguration party at Balamb Garden, where she gets him to dance, much to Quistis's shock. Rinoa is on an errand on behalf of the Timber Owls to convince Headmaster Cid Kramer to employ SeeD mercenaries to aid her cause. With Seifer's help she is introduced to Cid and, hearing her plight, Cid allows her the use of a group of three SeeDs despite the meager payment she offers in return and the complaints of the Garden Faculty.

Under contract, Squall serves as Rinoa's soldier
The three SeeD chosen are Zell Dincht, Selphie Tilmitt, and Squall Leonhart. While disappointed that Seifer is not part of the squad, Rinoa is nonetheless elated that SeeD has come to the Owls' aid. The SeeD at first willingly assist in Rinoa's plans to kidnap Vinzer Deling, the President of Galbadia, by hijacking his train. Although the plan is successfully deployed, the President they kidnap is a fake. Rendering the operation a failure, the SeeDs' confidence in the Timber group begins to wane.
They learn the real President is going to be in the Timber TV Station to make an announcement. The Forest Owls attempt to hatch a new plan, with their SeeD mercenaries watching skeptically from a distance. Squall requests to see the contract that bounds the SeeD group to the Timber Owls, only to discover they are under Rinoa's command as long as Timber remains under Galbadian oppression. While on their way to infiltrate the TV Station, new intelligence indicates that, due to the large numbers of Galbadian soldiers, the agreed plan would have to be ditched. Squall expresses the SeeD group's misgivings about being part of such a casual organization and questions Rinoa's commitment to her goals. The argument ends with her leaving.

During the TV broadcast a renegade Seifer takes the President hostage over the air and Squall, Selphie and Zell rush to the station to aid Quistis, who had been pursuing Seifer. Seifer is spirited away by sorceress Edea, saving the President's life. Having seen the incident on the Timber TV Station screen, and discovering the Forest Owls' base destroyed, Rinoa returns in pursuit of Seifer.

Rinoa voices her opinion on Squall's attitude
Arriving too late to find Seifer, she orders the SeeDs to help her lie low while the Galbadian forces search the town. Contemplating Seifer's fate leads Squall and Rinoa into another argument over their views on life before they are given word it is clear to leave town. On their way to Galbadia Garden, the two argue again, this time about Squall's cold attitude towards his teammates. The group makes it to the Garden and after some reminiscing about Seifer, whom they presume dead from execution, Rinoa ends up revealing her past relationship with him, and they receive new orders. Rinoa pretends to be a SeeD to avoid conflict and joins Squall's group in heading to Deling City to meet their contact, Rinoa's father, General Caraway. After meeting with the SeeDs, General Caraway locks Rinoa in another room and informs the SeeDs of his plan to assassinate the sorceress, Edea Kramer.
After the briefing Rinoa manages to escape the room, rushing to Quistis to tell her of another plan to stop the sorceress by tricking her to wear the Odine Bangle that is said to have the power to suppress a sorceress's powers. Quistis berates her thinking that Rinoa's plan is only contrived to oppose her father. Left to her own devices, Rinoa proceeds to carry out her plan alone, infiltrating the Presidential Residence, and offers the bangle to Edea as a gift. Edea casts a spell that renders Rinoa under her control and like a puppet, Rinoa placidly follows Edea out onto the balcony where she is designated as a sacrifice for Edea's coronation ceremony.

Rinoa insists that Squall doesn't leave her
Edea summons two Iguion statues to attack Rinoa, but Squall and Irvine infiltrate the Presidential Residence in time to save her. In return she stays and fights beside Squall when he attacks Edea. The attack proves unsuccessful and the group is captured and imprisoned in the D-District Prison, barred by Irvine who managed to escape. Irvine returns, acting on orders from presumably Rinoa's father, to retrieve Rinoa from imprisonment and, with tenacious convincing from Rinoa, the pair assists the rest of the group's escape from the compound.
During their capture, the group collectively learns that in retaliation for the attack on sorceress Edea, Galbadia has targeted Balamb and Trabia Gardens in a missile attack. Splitting into two groups the party attempts to prevent the attack. Selphie's plan is to sabotage the missiles aimed at Balamb, and Squall proceeded to warn Balamb Garden of the missiles. It is up to the player's decision to place Rinoa in either group. The party is reunited in Fishermans Horizon where the unharmed but now mobile Balamb Garden crashes. Squall is ordered to act as an ambassador and enact a formal apology, but Mayor Dobe, the leader of the pacifist city, tells them to leave immediately, as their presence can only cause destruction. Galbadian soldiers invade the town, and Dobe heads off to discuss peacefully with the soldiers. The soldiers do not listen, and Dobe is rescued by Squall and his team. Grudgingly, the mayor accepts their apology, and orders the city's technicians to restore Balamb Garden to full functionality. During this the participants of Selphie's group reunite with Squall and for a moment Squall is seen to be almost elated, something that does not go unnoticed by Rinoa.

Rinoa and Squall sit down and talk
With the mobile Balamb Garden Squall is appointed commander of the Garden and SeeD, and to celebrate his friends organize a concert for his honor. During the concert Squall and Rinoa have a moment together, the dialogue depending on which instruments the player assigns to the band. In the bad dialogue option Rinoa and Squall argue and Rinoa ends up running away. In the better dialogue option Rinoa convinces Squall to trust in his friends more.
As his first command Squall liberated Balamb from Galbadian occupation. The next order is to head to Trabia Garden, Selphie's home Garden, and the target for the missile attacks. He offers the Trabia students Balamb Garden's support and while waiting for Selphie to regroup with them, Rinoa begins voicing her worries about being a burden within the group and what would happen in the future. This causes the rest of the group to recollect their pasts and discover they were all raised in the same orphanage and that Edea is actually the Matron of the orphanage who used to look after them. The Garden embarks to the old orphanage in search of clues, but is intercepted by a similarly mobile Galbadia Garden. The Battle of the Gardens ensues, which results in sorceress Edea's defeat and Rinoa mysteriously becoming comatose. It is revealed that during the whole time Edea had been possessed by another sorceress, sorceress from the future known as Ultimecia, but being defeated by SeeD snaps Edea out of it and she becomes the SeeDs' ally.

Squall rescues Rinoa in space
Rinoa's condition is of great concern to Squall, driving him to great lengths to find a cure. He knows Ellone has the power to send people's consciousnesses back in time and begins to search for her to ask her to send him in Rinoa's past in order to find out what happened to her. Eventually being lead to Esthar, Squall is sent to the Lunar Base space station with Rinoa to meet Ellone. Onboard the space station Rinoa awakens under the control of Ultimecia, as after being defeated Edea unknowingly passed on her Sorceress Power to Rinoa. Ultimecia uses Rinoa to unlock Adel's Tomb and leaves Rinoa to die in space. Through sudden impulsiveness, Squall ditches his escape pod from the exploding Lunar Base and intercepts Rinoa as she floats away. By sheer fortune, the two discover and board the derelict Ragnarok spaceship which was also floating aimlessly in space near them.
On board the Ragnarok, Squall communicates their current situation to Esthar, and then enables the ship's autopilot to return to the planet. During the trip, Rinoa and Squall embrace and share a tender conversation, with Squall confessing many things to Rinoa about himself and Rinoa telling him that now he is the one to give her the most comfort and happiness. The land base tells the two that Rinoa will be seized by the Esthar government upon landing.

Squall prevents Rinoa from cryogenically freezing herself
Upon landing back in Esthar, Rinoa is taken by Esthar officials to contain her sorceress powers in a new tomb on Sorceress Memorial. Squall intervenes after being pushed into action by his friends, especially Quistis, breaking the seal of the tomb and taking Rinoa away with him to Edea's orphanage where Rinoa voices her concerns about being possessed again and turning evil. Squall makes a silent vow to become Rinoa's Sorceress Knight. Rinoa asks Squall to kill her should her worst fear of becoming evil come to reality, but Squall reassures her that his enemy is Ultimecia alone. Rinoa tells Squall of a nightmare she had in which she wanted to see him, but could not find him. The couple make a promise to meet at the flower field by Edea's orphanage should they be separated.

Rinoa, possessed by Ultimecia, on the verge of time compression
Joining forces with Esthar the SeeDs come up with a plan to defeat Ultimecia. They use the Ragnarok to invade the Lunatic Pandora and fight through Seifer and Sorceress Adel (now Ultimecia's vessel). Ultimecia orders Seifer to capture Rinoa, who is junctioned to the physical body of Adel through Ultimecia's powers. Squall and the others defeat Adel, who is forced to pass on her Sorceress Power to Rinoa. Ultimecia possesses Rinoa again, and Ellone uses her powers to send Ultimecia and Rinoa back in time so that Ultimecia can cast time compression, which is a magic only possible to cast if the sorceress's consciousness exists in the past, present, and future. The process of time compression is long however, and the allotted time allows for Squall, Rinoa, Zell, Quistis, Irvine, and Selphie to enter Ultimecia Castle in the future, where Ultimecia awaits. Upon Ultimecia's demise the time compression unravels back to normal, leaving the combatants stranded in time. Each member manages to get back by remembering who they are and where they want to be. Rinoa reappears in the flower field, where she and Squall had made their promise, but Squall is nowhere to be found. Using her sorceress powers, Rinoa manages to find Squall in a Void, trapped between time. Close to death she saves him by bringing him back with her to the flower field.

Rinoa and Squall kiss
During a party at Balamb Garden to celebrate SeeD's victory over Ultimecia, Squall and Rinoa are notably absent until they are found to be standing together, outside on a balcony overlooking the ocean. Noticing a shooting star, much as the one he had seen on the night the pair first met, Squall smiles at Rinoa and kisses her as the Garden flies under the moonlight. 


Anonymous said...

Rinoa and Seifer don't have to romantic relationship, since in the game Rinoa said the THOUGHT it was love, also she NOT considered his girlfriend, then I think that they do not talked about their feelings. As such, I think that a relationship can not be sustained at all (if that was because it is not entirely clear). Also in the game shows no flashbacks or FMVs us that there was a romance. What is certain is that they have to have a business relationship because Rinoa wanted freedom of Timber and wanted to enlist the help of Seifer, and it seems that's all that was between them.

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