Etienne de Vignolles
|Etienne de Vignolles|
Etienne de Vignolles (・ド・ヴィニョル do Vinyoru) is one of the secondary characters in Puella Magi Tart Magica: The Legend of "Jeanne d'Arc".
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- Occupation: Mercenary
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- Known relatives: Melissa de Vignolles (daughter), Milene (girlfriend, deceased)
Etienne was born in a small village named Prechacq-les-Bains in the Gascony region of southwest France. He took up soldiering at an early age, and his nickname came from how quickly he could be riled to anger. True to his nickname, he earned a reputation far and wide for his severe fighting style. At the time he was dating a young woman named Milene. After arguing with Milene in regards to his dream, he left the village in approximately 1413 with Milene’s brother and his best friend Jean Poton de Xaintrailles to become mercenaries. They returned in 1418 only to discover that the village had been struck with plague in the previous year and that the majority of the villagers had fallen to the illness, including Milene and her parents. Despite this, Milene’s daughter was able to survive and had been taken in with the other orphans by the local priest. Etienne realizes that Milene’s daughter was also his own and that the reason Milene became upset with him was to drive him off and allow him to follow his dream without burdened by her or their soon-to-be-born daughter. Etienne then takes in Melissa and brings her with him everywhere thereafter. He was hired by the Dauphin in 1418 and fought for him from then on.
After Tart’s final capture and impending death by means of being burned at the stake, Etienne had not given up on trying to rescue Tart, and his attack on Rouen led to his capture. Later, he was captured again at Pontoise Trail, but was released in a prisoner exchange for John Talbot. Even after their release, they remained lifelong rivals, and Etienne would come to be known as one of the most gallant generals of the French army.
During Tart Magica
Etienne first appeared in Chapter 5. As Minou, Lapin, and Corbeau finish dispatching the soldiers at the Fort outside of Orleans, they tease and taunt the commanding officer Jean Batard. Before they can finish him off, someone shoots an arrow at Corbeau and Etienne appears to try to help Jean off of the battlefield and towards safety. Minou lashes her whip at them but the two men are able to barely escape with their lives. Etienne was the commanding officer of a large troop of mercenaries that had also been secured to help defend the city. However, despite their seemingly overwhelming numbers, the French suffered a total loss at the hands of the three magical girls. La Hire helped Jean to return to Orleans and rally the surviving troops all while encouraging him, but Jean can only look upward and pray for a miracle to save Orleans.
Following the battle with Corbeau and Fleche in which Etienne was saved thanks to Melissa’s wish, Etienne decides to celebrate with the others at the palace of Chinon. He offers some of the palace wine to his daughter Melissa, one of the maids assisting the battalion of soldiers. As Etienne introduces her to Lord Gilles, the Grand Chamberlain asks for everyone’s attention and thanks them for arriving. The Dauphin Charles informs everyone of how Tart, a common girl with no royal standing, has asked for a short audience with him and how they plan to trick her by having Lord Gilles sit on the throne and pretend to be the Dauphin. Etienne is amongst those present when Tart arrives and correctly deduces that Gilles is not the Dauphin he claims to be and is able to find Charles amongst the crowd of bystanders.
A short time later, Etienne and La Hire stand before the gates of Chinon as the troops finish their preparations for the upcoming battle at Orleans. Etienne notes how much the mood has lifted ever since the arrival of Tart. Melissa was assigned to serve Tart from this point onward and the three magical girls make introductions, dispensing with formal titles. The Dauphin appears and informs Gilles and Etienne that they are in charge of the troops from here to Orleans. Gilles gives a rousing speech and the troops set out. Tart asks Melissa if she’s not afraid to be heading into a battlefield, but Melissa has followed her mercenary father since she was little and has spent more time on a battlefield than off it. Etienne reminds her she’s more than welcome to stay in Chinon, but she declines. Etienne realizes that Melissa would rather care for Tart than him. As the sun begins to sink on that day, Gilles wonders if they should break for camp, but Etienne remembers a village not far from there and advices a small group go ahead to see if they can procure a good campsite. Etienne, Tart and her group go on ahead only to find that the village has been burned to the ground. Riz’s soul gem glows and she warns the others of a possible witch nearby. Etienne warns Melissa to stay put as he races back to warn Gilles of the possible danger. It is at this point that Kyubey introduces himself to Melissa.
Soon, the band of troops arrive at Orleans before the Burgundy Gate. Tart is showing off the banner she embroidered to rally the soldiers, but Etienne believes it won’t strike fear into the English. By this point, the English had managed to conquer the surrounding fortresses and strategic locations around the city. Jean Batard is here and Etienne asks about his leg. In the following days, the relief soldiers along with the remainder of the French forces led by Jean are able to resecure the Saint-Loup fortress, Saint-Jean-Le-Blanc fortress, and the Saint-Augustine Fort. As the soldiers celebrate their recent successes at night, Gilles and Etienne discuss how Tart’s “divine protection” is real and that the men feel more confident in waging a two-pronged attack in the near future. Etienne knows that Jean Batard is not eager to face those three mysterious girls again. Riz, having overheard their conversation, knows that it is probable they will face them again but it will be she herself who will fight with them personally. Etienne smiles, knowing that Riz means to protect Tart by any means.
At the battle at Orleans, Corbeau fights off Riz and Tart with the help of Fleche. During the fight, Etienne strikes at Corbeau with his sword in an attempt to defend Tart, but the attack does nothing to Corbeau, who merely blocks a second sword attack with the back of her arm and throws Etienne face first into the ground essentially knocking him unconscious and hurting him gravely. Melissa rushes to her father's side and Riz calls out to her, telling her to get away from the front lines as soon as possible. Corbeau tells Fleche to make sure nothing is left of La Hire and Fleche conjures a large spear-like arrow and fits it to her bow. As she unleashes the arrow aimed at Melissa and her father, Tart suddenly stands before them and takes the full brunt of the attack, sparing the two humans. As the dust settles, Tart asks Melissa if she's alright, and thanks heaven she is as Tart stands there with a large hole the size of her fist in her right shoulder. Tart collapses face first as Melissa calls out her name and gives a sob realizing that no one will be able to help her. Corbeau laughs as she says that the magic of La Pucelle is growing steadily weaker and weaker. As Corbeau mocks Tart, she turns and Melissa is standing there, now a magical girl as she declares that, whatever the future and whatever fate may await them, she too will fight alongside them as a magical girl. Melissa wished for Tart and her father to be saved, but the shock of such sudden recovery causes Etienne to lose consciousness once more after a fleeting glimpse of Melissa as a magical girl.
The following day, the remainder of the French and English forces face off outside the walls of Orleans. Jean Batard is standing beside Etienne, both ready for battle, as he asks if La Hire is up to facing the English after the hard day he had. Etienne is fine, but isn't quite sure what happened other than Melissa saved his life as if by some sort of miracle and now stands at the front lines. If anything, he's more worried whether that masked girl or the huge monster from before were going to show up again. John Talbot, the commander of the English forces asks for a parley with no weapons, to which both sides agree. Talbot knows he doesn’t have the forces to stand up to them and asks if they can leave the battlefield and grant the victory to France without bloodshed on either side. Tart and Batard agree to the terms and the battle is won.
Etienne was also present during Elisa’s introduction to Tart and their subsequent sparring match. After Tart’s defeat at the hands of the more experienced Elisa, Elisa calls her a disappointment which causes Melissa to lose her temper and challenge Elisa to a match. Etienne initially holds Riz back after hearing Elisa’s comments, but is unable to hold Melissa back who promptly grabs Elisa and throws her several hundred feet away into the air. Riz is shocked and Etienne tells her that there's nothing he can do to stop her once she gets truly angry. Riz sighs and says to herself that things are going to get pretty noisy.
At the battle at the city of Patay, Etienne was one of the heads of the French forces. As the magical girls fought, Lapin eventually transformed into a witch and used her ability to steal all of the weapons of the French forces. Having been warned by her sister Minou to stand back, the majority of the English forces were able to stay out of range and retained their weaponry. Taking advantage of this situation, Talbot orders his men to attack the defenseless French forces. Etienne tries to distribute what weapons they have to arm their men when black feathers begin to rain down on them. Due to Corbeau’s Danse Macabre, all of the people touched by the black feathers begins to suddenly and instantly contract the black plague. However, Tart’s soul gem glows brightly and she uses her magic to heal everyone of the illness and their injuries.
Following Isabeau’s appearance at the celebration of the coronation of Charles, Charles withdrew his order to liberate Paris and disbanded his army. Alencon, Etienne, Gilles and Jean Batard were dispersed and some sent to fight in the north of France while others were returned to their own territories.
Once Tart was captured and held prisoner by Minou, Etienne, Gilles, and Lord Richemont led the French forces that were to act as a distraction so that the remaining magical girls could liberate Tart. Despite knowing they stood no chances against Minou one she entered the battlefield, the men fought nevertheless in the hopes of liberating Tart. After Tart’s battle with Isabeau, she offers her own life in exchange for the lives of the French soldiers and their liberty.
- Etienne gave himself the nickname "La Hire".
- He's known for his brash temper, something Melissa inherited from him.
- In France he is associated with the Jack of Hearts in a deck of playing cards.