- "Ragnarok. Come Day of Wrath, O Pulse l'Cie. Embrace thy fate, thine home to burn. That fallen souls might bear our plea. To hasten the Divine's return. O piteous wanderer, Ragnarok. Make of this day a brave epoch. Deliver the Divine, Ragnarok."
- —Galenth Dysley as Serah, reciting the lyrics of "Fighting Fate"
- See also: Datalog/History and Myth.
Lightning, Snow, and the others saw a phantom vision of this beast upon their branding as l'Cie. In the dream, they witnessed the creature besieging Cocoon's capital of Eden, but whether this was a glimpse of past events or a vision of things yet to come was unclear. What is clear is that Ragnarok is inextricably linked to their Focus. The nature of that Focus, and what must be done to fulfill it, remains to be seen.
- See also: Fragment/Crimson Memories.
Message of the Orbs
The most famous of the prophecies left by the seeress Paddra Nsu-Yeul concerns the descent of the monster Ragnarok in the great battle for Cocoon.
Long before this came to pass, the seeress named the two 'sisters' who would summon the beast. 'They shall come from the far north, and the black-haired one shall be of the family Yun, and the red-haired one of the family Dia.' The truth of the prophecy was later confirmed by the priests of Oerba.
- See also: Fragment/Fate's Recollection.
The Book of Haerii
This is the prophecy told by Lachesis, messenger of the magic world.
Ragnarok the beast shall bring down Cocoon. After the War of Transgression, two girls from the far north shall come to Cocoon, the nest of Lindzei, and transform into the beast that destroys it. Until the end of time, this day shall be known as the Day of Ragnarok.
- —Sword of Lachesis
Some of the fal'Cie of Cocoon and Gran Pulse desire for l'Cie to become Ragnarok and destroy Cocoon. By doing so, they hope to summon Etro's Gate and be reunited with the Maker, the deity that created the world.
To bring back their Maker the fal'Cie need an ideal sacrifice - the deaths of millions of Cocoon citizens. Though powerful, Cocoon fal'Cie are prohibited from harming Cocoon because they are bound to its creation and maintenance. Instead, they use Pulse l'Cie who are given a Focus to destroy Cocoon.
This sparked the War of Transgression 500 years before Final Fantasy XIII, putting both humans on Cocoon and Gran Pulse at odds with each other to ensure Ragnarok's coming. Oerba Dia Vanille and Oerba Yun Fang were selected from the village of Oerba to become Ragnarok and destroy Cocoon, but Vanille never transformed into the beast, forcing Fang to become Ragnarok alone.
As Fang's incomplete form of Ragnarok left a huge scar on Cocoon's shell, Etro took pity on the people of Cocoon and drained Ragnarok of power before placing Vanille and Fang into early crystal stasis, their Focus still incomplete. Later, Barthandelus took the Pulse Vestige to Cocoon where the pair would reawaken 500 years later to finish the job.
Five hundred years later, Barthandelus had taken peaceful political rule over Cocoon as Primarch Galenth Dysley. After they awaken, Vanille remembers their previous Focus, but hides her knowledge from Fang as the latter cannot recall anything of Ragnarok.
Bearing the guilt of Ragnarok Vanille goes along with Fang's attempts to revive "their" memories, attacking the Cocoon fal'Cie Kujata. The incident separates the two, Vanille looking for a way to escape to Gran Pulse, while Fang joins the Cavalry under Cid Raines.
During the Purge, Vanille boards a train headed for Gran Pulse, meeting Lightning, Hope, Snow, and Sazh after the incident at Hanging Edge flies out of control. The other four are branded by Anima with the Focus to become Ragnarok and destroy Cocoon, the same fal'Cie that used to reside in Fang and Vanille's home town of Oerba and originally branded the pair. Barthandelus had hidden Anima along with Vanille and Fang in the Pulse Vestige left on Cocoon.
Though tasked with yet another mission to bring about the end of Cocoon, Vanille continues to hide her knowledge of the past from her friends, keeping silent or playing innocent during her journey with Sazh, who harbors anti-Pulse feelings and eventually learns of Vanille's indirect role in his son becoming a l'Cie.
Fang, meanwhile, learns of the other l'Cie after helping to apprehend Snow, and reunites with Vanille and the others upon the Palamecia where they meet Dysley, who reveals himself as Barthandelus and taunts Fang's inability to remember her fate. On Gran Pulse, Fang gradually recalls her mission and confronts Vanille, who admits she was hiding the secret so they would not have to transform into the beast again.
Barthandelus appears to them as they scour the ruined city of Oerba, first taking the disguise of Serah Farron. Serah's shade chants to legend of Ragnarok. Barthandelus reveals his true form to convince them by force, while stating his back up plan to have Cocoon's people destroy themselves in their stead. After his temporary defeat, Vanille, Fang, and the rest of the party resolve to save Cocoon rather than destroy it.
When the party passes through Edenhall and descends into Orphan's Cradle, Barthandelus orders them one last time to accept their destiny and kill Orphan and the whole of Cocoon. They refuse, and Barthandelus decides to eliminate them and await new l'Cie. The protagonists prove stronger than him and Barthandelus sinks into Orphan's pool, and his extension, Menrva, flies into the pool to awaken Orphan, the fal'Cie having assimilated Barthandelus unto its shell.
After a lengthy battle, Fang begins to waver and decides to begin the transformation; the other party members save Vanille, and are transformed into Cie'th. Vanille pleads with Fang to reject the fate of Ragnarok, but her words are in vain. Fang morphs into an inferior version of the beast, unable to kill Orphan, who resorts to torturing a restored Fang to make her embrace her hatred and transform into Ragnarok again.
Vanille rejects Orphan when asked to become Ragnarok, and the other party members come out of Cie'th form and blast Orphan, causing its shell to crumble into its pool as the fal'Cie rises into its true form. The party resolves to defeat Orphan without Ragnarok's aid and destroy it. With Orphan no longer keeping Cocoon airborne, the floating continent begins to fall.
Vanille and Fang transform into Ragnarok together and the fabled beast smashes through Cocoon's shell and uses an erupting basin of lava on Gran Pulse to form a column of volcanic rock. Ragnarok uses the lifeforce of the Pulsian wildlife to envelop the floating continent in crystal, saving the world with Vanille and Fang crystallized within the crystal pillar.
- Main article: Ragnarok (Final Fantasy XIII Theme)
Ragnarok's theme is a haunting melody most prominently featuring a Latin chorus. It references Ragnarok's role to destroy Cocoon.
Etymology and SymbolismEdit
- See also: Ragnarok#Etymology.
In Norse mythology, Ragnarök is a series of future events, including a great battle foretold that kills the gods Odin, Thor, Týr, Freyr, Heimdallr, and Loki, the occurrence of various natural disasters, and the submersion of the world in water. Afterward, the world will resurface anew and fertile, and the world will be repopulated by two human survivors. In the Final Fantasy XIII mythology Ragnarok is to bring the destruction of the world, which the fal'Cie believe will bring about Maker's return and thus making the world anew, similar to the Norse legend. The death of the Cocoon fal'Cie after Cocoon's fall can also be seen as similar to the gods' death in Ragnarök in Norse mythology.
The characters of Fang and Vanille are based on the Ragnorök myth of Líf ("life") and Lífþrasir ("eager for life") - the only humans who will survive Ragnarok. They sleep through the destruction of the earth and upon awakening will find the earth green and verdant again. Líf and Lífþrasir will become the progenitors of a new race of humans, and their descendants will inhabit the world. This is congruent with the idea that Fang was originally envisioned as a male character.
- Ragnarok's complete form resembles a fusion of Bahamut and Hecatoncheir, Fang and Vanille's respective Eidolons.