Bride (ブライド, Buraido) is the forty-third leader of the religious cult SAMPLE. He hijacks the luxury cruise Exit along with other members of SAMPLE in August 2002. After his arms are severed, Bride (dying) rejects Fermet's offer to make him an incomplete immortal, deliberately jumps into the ocean and is immediately eaten by a shark.
He is succeeded by Illness, who becomes the forty-fourth Bride of SAMPLE.
Appearance[edit | edit source]
Bride has pink-red hair and green eyes. He wears square glasses and the red and black uniform of SAMPLE, though he removes his glasses when he's high on dextrose.
He wears a red and black labcoat over his clothes.
His smile is usually described as 'sloppy.'
Personality[edit | edit source]
Bride is normally a rather shy and affable introvert who is highly nervous when with large numbers of other people.
In order to suppress his anxiety, he injects himself with dextrose and becomes a charismatic and go-getter leader. Without dextrose, he is unable to fulfill his leadership duties. When using dextrose, Bride speaks in a heavier, more formal tone.
As a member of SAMPLE, Bride has no compunctions about inflicting pain on another person - essentially having that person take on the pain of 'everyone else.'
He is a big fan of video games - arcade shooter games especially.
It is implied that he prefers older women.
Chronology[edit | edit source]
In the summer of 2002, SAMPLE members silently wait in a circular room of a church in Tokyo, Japan, surrounding the altar in the center. When the moon reaches its apex in the sky, Bride opens the doors and enters the room, followed by multiple men and women and accompanied by a dozen children (the children are dressed in white). At his side he holds a binder, and he wears an outlandish red and black patterned labcoat over his clothes - matching the red and black uniforms of the others.
Bride apologizes to the room for being late, explaining that he'd had trouble with the "final boss" of a shooter game he'd been playing. He'd had to start over five times! With a sloppy grin, Bride walks to the altar as he talks with admiration about the skill with which shooter games are made these days. How much he enjoys burning though a storm of bullets, that transient feeling of having conquered the world—yes, he raises a glass to Japanese game designers and concedes to their expertise.
As he rambles, he sets his binder on top of the altar. The children scatter across the room while several adults line up on either side of him - on either side a young woman, and beside each woman strange-looking men. One has the look and build of a gorilla; another wears a black suit but has his face wrapped in bandages. These bandages are oddly also red and black - and in fact it is difficult to say whether or not they are bandages at all. To top it off, he wears red leather gloves on his hands.
Bride asks the totally silent ensemble to "settle down," and admits that actually he's the only one who needs to settle down. He explains that because he's "very much an introvert" he is quite nervous, what with being surrounded by all the others. It can't be helped. Looking around, he neglects to meet anyone else's gaze, and a suspicious glint in his eye contrasts his sloppish grin.
He informs the room that they have a new member with them today - a young woman, and he laments that he is very nervous when he talks to women. Raising his voice to cover his own anxiety, he invites the room to welcome one Miss Lucotte. So saying, he point to a woman (dressed like all the others), who steps forward at the attention and thanks him. She says that she is very happy to be able to join their faith, and Bride shyly laughs and tells her there's no need to be anxious and that she can act however she likes.
Bride addresses the room and says that he's been told Miss Lucotte grew up in England and likes to bake cookies. Well, he can bake cookies too, although he's a bit afraid to have others taste them. What if they don't taste any good? Bride recollects himself and returns to introducing the woman, forcing a laugh.
Bride begins to reveal his hand, knowing full well that "Miss Lucotte Diaz" is not who she says she is. He reveals that the woman graduated from Hillroam University - and how jealous he is, given that he graduated from a no-name college himself - and that she got a job with St. Crystelle Offices, where she gained the trust of her bosses by doing legal and illegal work. And not only that - she's come here undercover on behalf of that office. How brave she is, fearlessly "storming the unknown!"
He invites the room to give Miss Lucotte a round of applause, and remembers that he'd told 'Lucotte' he'd introduce her to SAMPLE's leader. As a matter of fact, he says, he's the leader. He formally introduces himself as Bride, the forty-third leader of SAMPLE. He elaborates - one could say that he's the head of the faith's teachings. They do not worship any individual; rather, their faith is rooted in their incomplete holy book. "In other words," he says, "the leader will continue to add to our philosophy, regardless of changes in leadership."
He opens the binder and shows her its contents - thousands of words written in tiny lettering, the earlier pages in parchment, the later pages in newer paper. Halfway through, the pages are blank. He calls the binder their holy book, though some in the organization feel that they should digitalize its contents. He asks her opinion on the matter, noting proudly that for a three century-old group they are rather progressive. Although - older religions have long since begun using modern technology to their advantage, much to his envy.
Bride grins, claps his hands, and announces that he will "temporarily become the leader." Spreading his arms wide, he waits as the young women at his side each take out a syringe and hand them to him. After removing the air bubbles from the liquid, he simultaneously stabs both of them into his neck. At "Lucotte's" silent scream, he smiles his sloppy smile and tells her not to worry - he's just injecting himself with dextrose. He admits that he can't handle being a leader without his brain full of sugars.
Bride removes the syringes and hands them back to the women. He then walks back to the altar and removes his glasses, signaling the change in personality. Letting out a moaning breath, he leans backwards as his bones crack. Finally he ceases his "screaming moans," and the people surrounding him stop smiling.
Finally, he slowly turns around and with "emotionless eyes" asks the woman to let him reintroduce himself. He welcomes her (using her real name): "Welcome, former Celice Artia, now reborn as Lucotte Diaz." Bride opens his arms wide and closes his eyes as he invites the room to sing. The other members of the faith look at him with respect, and the children scattered around the room start singing a tuneless round. The children are all wearing blindfolds, and headphones cover their ears - effectively both blind and deaf, observing their surrounding via touch and smell alone. Chains restrain their feet and their hands are bound behind their backs. Bride conducts their song, moving his hands back and forth.
The song goes on until Bride lowers his hands, joy written across his face. With the music gone, he covers his his face with his hands and lowers his head, chuckling. Removing his hands, he smiles quietly and approaches Celice. With a heavy tone, he informs her that she will have to temporarily marry him, and stay his wife until the "true bride" is found. Once the true bride is found, Celice will be free to die a peaceful death.
Moments later, the church doors swing wide open and a group of seven or eight men—perhaps of Southeast Asian origin - invade the room, shouting at the SAMPLE members. One of them carries a gigantic hand-axe while about half carry smaller bladed weapons. The remaining three carry handguns. Celice lets out a quiet scream and collapses in a corner of the room. The men slowly lower their voices and glance at each other; one of them begins looking around the room for a target.
As Celice mumbles to herself, Bride smiles at her and explains that they've had trouble with these men in the past. He'd hoped they could get along - what a pity. With a sympathetic shake of his head, he drops the smile and says to the other believers, that at this rate they will be killed - a terrifying prospect. Adorning a saintlike smile, he continues: "And as we do not wish to die, we must, by necessity--"
Carnage erupts over the next thirty minutes. The intruders cut down the believers and shoot several of them with their guns. But despite the believers' critical wounds, they swarm the group of men 'like zombies' with smiles gracing their faces. As the bloodbath rages on, Bride looks upwards and recites a short speech with a peaceful look on his face. The massacre reaches its conclusion as his speech reaches his end. All the intruders have been killed - half 'instantly' by the two secretarial women, the giant, and the bandaged man, and the other half by the believers themselves. Bride moves to stand by Celice's side and smiles at her. He says that "we just make it so that pain is not something agonizing" and proceeds to insert a syringe in Celice's neck
Bride picks up Celice (who lies trembling on the floor) and helps her out of the church, with two women following him. Having lost his charismatic attitude (the dextrose presumably has worn off), Bride struggles to meet her gaze and mumbles that it won't be a 'marriage' legally speaking - just in the eyes of their doctrine. They ought to try and get along at the very least. He says that their religion doesn't deny pleasure, and signals the two women to take out several photographs.
Stumbling over his words, he tells Celice that he 'wants to have everything [he] wants' - that's what it means to be human, after all. What he's trying to say is that once he finds the true bride, he'll divorce and kill Celice to keep her quiet. So he thinks that maybe she'll be able to die happy if she knows what kind of women the bride-candidates are.
He takes the photos and shows her the first one - a photograph of Sylvie Lumiere, and comments that his heart is racing at the thought of her - though he guesses part of the reason is that she's so much older than him. The next photograph is of Illness, who Bride says is younger than her. He remarks that her name is strange, though he's heard that she was once a distinguished priestess of another (now destroyed) branch of their religion.
He then switches to the next set of pictures, and flips through them. In order, they are: Denkurō Tōgō, Nile, Elmer C. Albatross, Maiza Avaro, Begg Garrott, and though they are not described it is implied that there are more men in the stack of photos. He explains that since they are all men, they are not bride-candidates. However, his group must protect these men, as they are considered "current gods."
Bride picks out one photograph of a boy and cheerfully identifies him as 'the one' - perhaps even more important than the bride in a sense. He vaguely elaborates that the boy has fulfilled "every single requirement" and will be a perfect god for SAMPLE. His name is Czeslaw Meyer.
They reach a car outside the church, and Bride lays the unresponsive Celice out in the car's backseat. The bandaged man stands beside Bride, and Bride looks at him, slightly surprised that he's leaving already. Bride tells him he'll "see [him] on the seas" and the man departs, getting into the backseat of another car. Bride looks around and sees the other SAMPLE members (now dressed in normal plain clothing) heading off to their respective homes.
Bride talks to himself in attempt to assuage his own nerves. He remarks that it's been a while since they'd had such a large-scale service, and that he's nervous about being the leader. But he can do it - he'll just have to trust in the power of dextrose. With a self-deprecating laugh, he takes a seat in the back of the car (next to Celice) and speaks to the woman in the driver's seat. He tells her they should go see Orihara first, so that he can return 'the key.' Bride wants to thank him personally, since it looks like he'll be taken corpse disposal for SAMPLE on the side.
Bride looks at the nearby buildings through his window and laughs when he sees the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building. He calls Japan 'amazing' since there are arcades everywhere, and he hopes that the service on the ship will go just as well as one of his games.
In August, Bride and the other members of SAMPLE (about two hundred all together) prepare to board the luxury cruise Exit in Yokohama Harbor, Japan. By this time, he has 'married' Celice in the eyes of their faith, and she is now his 'wife.' Celice, under the influence of some drug, only responds with a monotone "...yes" to his questions. As they wait to board, Bride stands next to Celice and points over to a woman standing with a certain group preparing to board nearby. He tells "Miss Lucotte" that the woman is Sylvie from the photograph, and enthuses that the radiant Sylvie looks even better in person. He admits that he'd previously thought they'd just picked out someone particularly photogenic, but he now sees that photographs do not do her justice.
He takes Celice's hand as he stares at Sylvie, and he unhappily notes that he's now getting a little nervous. Celice, her eyes empty, responds with a monotone "...yes," but Bride pays no attention to her as he continues to ramble about Sylvie's beauty, comparing her to an Italian sculpture (modeled not after an angel or goddess but after a succubus). He infers that Celice is perhaps wondering why a religious man like Bride is referring to goddesses, and he tells her that his religion accept other religions' mythologies...as long as they are considered merely stories. He asks her opinion on it, doubting that she can be a match for Sylvie, and his subsequent responses are juxtapositioned against Celice's continued 'yeses.'
He remarks that if things proceed quickly, he'll have to 'take care' of her during the trip - is there anything she'd like to say beforehand? With sincerity (stemming from his sense of justice and perceived duty as a husband), he reminds her that he's her husband, so she should allow him to do at least this much for her. She says "...yes" again and he concludes that her final words are "yes!" and takes it to mean that she will allow him to kill her. He thanks her and says that he is truly grateful and expected no less from his wife. He says that she is a wonderful temporary priestess and kisses her.
For a single moment, life returns to Celice's face and she stutters "n-no" in protest. One of the women standing near Bride strikes her and causes Celice to pass out into Bride's arms. Bride supports her and mumbles in surprise that she's still conscious, calling her a poor thing (considering that all that's left for her is pain). He supposes that it's probably better for their priestess to retain her sanity. Quietly shaking his head, he leaves Celice to the gorilla-like man.
On the first night of the cruise, Bride leaves Celice alone in their bed and confers with his fellow SAMPLE members in the same room. He says that "Viralesque" is sending them frequent reports from the Exit's sister ship Entrance. He says that they ought to take care in their plans, but they must be bold as well. If they choose the bold path of creating no casualties, there will be no victims; if they choose to be careful, it will be best to sink everyone but themselves. Bride points out that it goes against their doctrine to cause pain and death to the uninvolved, so he prefers that they take the bold approach.
One of the two women who always accompany Bride ask him about the possibility that the immortals have noticed them, and he says that it's possible but not certain. She notes that the Child of Calamity and Light (that is, Elmer) was one of SAMPLE's, three centuries ago - it's certainly possible that he's caught on to them. Bride smiles and says that they'll cross that bridge when they come to it, and advises them to enjoy the situation, and life itself. That is the crux of their faith after all. He then apologizes for being so upfront about it.
He reminds them that the Entrance is departing a day after the Exit, so they might as well enjoy the cruise until then. He asks them to give the "married couple" a moment alone, and then he leaps over towards her "as if attempting a flying body press." Unfortunately, his jump is too feeble and he ends up hitting a corner of the bed with his side. He lets out a pained breath, and with a sheepish look he stands up and attempts to excuse himself: he says that vacations are known to make people more 'open' and this is his first time having such a mature woman as his wife, so they can "hardly blame [him] for the libido."
He affirms that he doesn't have a lolita complex - and this is a lot different than from the usual marriage of ten-year-old girls at the moment of their deaths. Clearing his throat, he holds out a gentlemanly hand to Celice on the bed and says that they ought to leave for the reception party and that he is sure it'll cheer her up. Since she only has a few days left, he asks that as his wife she experience as much pain as possible.
Bride and Celice head to the large banquet hall (also described as a restaurant) and sit on the opposite side of the restaurant from Elmer and his group. Bride films Luchino B. Campanella performing his magic tricks for the diners with his camcorder. He pays close attention when Sylvie participates in one Luchino's magic tricks, and smiles when Luchino hands her a rose. At Sylvie's smile, Bride mumbles about how delightful it is that she has not grown tired of living after three-hundred years, and says that he'll make a copy of his video later as he takes out the tape from his camcorder and places it into his bag. After all, once he marries Sylvie...showing her memories of happier days will be a "prayer" in its own right.
On the second night, Bride confers with the believers in charge of communications in his suite room. He remarks that normally, people would start on the third day of the cruise as he takes out his labcoat. He would like to say "until then, let us enjoy this cruise" but he supposes that it's best to get an early start. He suggests that they start "drenching" this ship from tomorrow night onwards. If it's possible, that is. He lets out an awkward laugh, unfolds the labcoat, and then refolds it, mumbling that he'll put it on later.
He walks up to Celice and brushes aside her bangs, noting that he doesn't know how much longer she has. He says that he is "very much in love with [her]" and averts his eyes shyly. With a sheepish laugh, he whispers to her "without malice nor aggression" that he'd like for her to "suffer beautifully."
On the third night, Bride stays in his suite room as he listens to the gunshots and screams over their radio. He shakes his head as he realizes things have been set in motion, an elated look on his face. With Bride in the room is a group of bound children in white clothing - "priestesses" who had been brought aboard by their own parents under the pretense of a family vacation. Meanwhile, Celice lies on the bed, wearing a white gown adorned with red and black patterns.
Bride figures that they are past the point of no return, and he wonders what they should do. Who would have guessed they'd run into seajackers (the Mask Makers) at a time like this? He wonders why fate must be so cruel, and he asks himself to grant him courage and for pain to grant him its blessings. As he recites his strange player, he presses a switch in his hand. Right on cue, the children's headphones begin playing them their own screams, and the children automatically begin singing their tuneless chorus.
Bride thanks "our pain" for this, feeling courage flow through his veins. He smiles and reaches into a hidden compartment of a briefcase sitting upon a table, in which there are about twenty syringes and needles total Bride takes out two syringes and holds one in each hand. He murmurs to himself the seajackers' confirmed locations and with a look of ecstasy says "let our mass...begin" before jabbing the needles into his neck without hesitation.
Bride and the children vacate the room, leaving Celice on the bed. Bride heads to the ship's bridge, where "the Demolisher" (that is, Fermet) has blown up the Mask Makers and captured crewmen. Standing in the middle of the blood and cadavers, Bride (wearing his labcoat) stands in front of the only surviving Mask Maker, asking him if he knows why the world is full of conflict and discrimination despite the fact that people are taught ethics and many religions forbid such ill treatment. According to Bride, the answer is simple. It is because "the act of looking down on others is infinitely pleasurable to humans." People may deny it all they want, but it wouldn't continue happening it if were false. Bride says that his faith does not deny this natural instinct, because his religion's mission - and doing things according to their own desires will bring them happiness.
The injured Mask Maker sarcastically observes that SAMPLE apparently doesn't do anything but it wants security anyway, and he compares its church to a pigsty. Bride laughs, and says that as long as the pigs are happy, fattened creatures who will never be butchered, they're fine with that. The Mask Maker interjects that if Bride were to run the world, humanity would be doomed. Bride agrees - people who pursue nothing but pleasure will eventually forget how to survive and die off.
Bride steps forward and takes off his glasses, stating "humanity will be destroyed... and where is the problem in that?" He asks the Mask Maker if he recalls that SAMPLE does not believe in gods or an afterlife, nor does it have an ethics system. He takes another step, and situates himself next to the man. He says that if people still desire to leave behind descendents, SAMPLE will not deny them their pleasure - though if that desire does not exist, then there is no point in forcibly preserving the human race. But since there are still people who still wish such things, Bride has no way of knowing what will happen later.
Bride steps behind the Mask Maker's back and says that yes, SAMPLE does not deny any person's pursuit of pleasure except for its sacrificial god. Stepping into a puddle of blood, Bride looks around and relishes in the silence as he observes the quiet believers standing around the room. They are carrying firearms retrieved from the corpses of the surrounding Mask Makers, and all of them are aiming their weapons directly at the Mask Maker. Each of them wears a smile of unbridled joy. The Mask Maker calls them "creepy bastards," and Bride tells him they'd be thankful if he could tell them who his leader is and what their plans are.
The Mask Maker makes it clear that he won't fess up easily, and as Bride walks he exclaims that these days they've been experimenting with new methods of creating pain - ones that won't leave marks. Electric shocks are only the beginning - for example, discharging a stun gun over one's kidneys will evenly distribute the pain across the body. He sighs, and steps around to face the Mask Maker head-on. He says that normally the most effective way would be to give the man a dose of screaming via headphones, but since they're strapped for time he'll have to give unto him a more direct sort of suffering.
The Mask Maker tells him to do his worst, and Bride ignores him as he accepts a briefcase from one of his allies. Taking out a syringe, he tells the man to rejoice. For a short while, he will become the 'object of their faith.' Bride asks him to please elicit as great a scream as possible. He assures him that although he and the other believers are not sadists, well...they are all smiling because they are oh so very glad that it's not one of them in his place.
Bride inserts the needle into the man's neck, sending some of the liquid into the Mask Maker's hypodermic tissue. The man lets out a soft scream and then - he falls to the floor, writhing and thrashing on the ground hard enough to break his spine as he screams at the top of his lungs. Bride watches in ecstasy, and with "honest eyes full of appreciation" he says that he is very grateful that he is not the one who is in such pain. He offers the man his gratitude.
The Mask Maker manages to form words through the pain, and Bride tells him not to worry - it's not a poison or drug. Just...saline solution. Three percent sodium, to be precise. As the Mask Maker continues screaming, Bride asks him again who his leader is and what their mission is. Several syringe wounds later, The Mask Maker confesses what he knows, identifying Luchino as the leader and revealing that they're after the immortal passengers. Bride goes to a nearby shelf and takes a pamphlet, looking at Luchino's photograph on the page. The information that the Mask Makers are after the immortals as well is news to him and he closes his eyes, wondering if 'Viralesque' aboard the Entrance is aware of what Bride's just been told. Although their only target aboard the Entrance is Czeslaw, Bride muses that it might have been rash to send in 'Viralesque' alone.
Bride steps forward and looks down at the Mask Maker. Though he is a non-believer, Bride prays that his death will be as painless as possible. Bride slowly raises one foot and stomps down on the man's neck with superhuman strength, breaking his spine. The man's movements cease immediately. Bride draws a symbol over his chest with his hand and pontificates in honor of the Mask Maker, their momentary god. He thanks the man for taking their pain all upon himself, and tears fall from his eyes. The other believers cry too, smiling through their sobs.
Then (or possibly a few minutes later), Bride goes over to the P.A. system and speaks into the microphone. Broadcasting his voice over the ship's speakers, he announces to those aboard the ship that it is nice to meet them. He introduces himself and the others as "the Mask Makers" and declares that they have taken over the ship. He informs the passengers that the ship is making its way towards Entrance at "beyond full speed" and says that they plan to "connect the entrance and the exit....if you catch our drift."
He warns the passengers that the Mask Makers are already amongst them, and probably planning on killing them. Speaking of which, the ship's captain is dead. He asks for their understanding.
Bride soon makes his way to the immortals' semi-suite cabin, where he greets Sylvie Lumiere and introduces himself. She asks what he is doing in her cabin, and he asks her to excuse him - he let himself in with the master key. She repeats her question, and he says that he is here to propose to his "bride." He asks her to marry him, shamelessly admitting that he has been enamoured with her ever since he saw her photograph. Yes, he has no love her her but he has been captured by her beauty. He says -- "please marry me--and despise me. And curse this world in which you live."
Sylvie informs him that she has a "previous engagement" and Bride says she must be speaking of Gretto Avaro. He takes advantage of her moment of confusion and sprays her face with sleeping gas. As her consciousness fades, he is intrigued to find that sleeping gases and the like are effective on immortals after all.
Several hours pass, during which time the unconscious Sylvie is clothed in a red and black wedding dress and moved to the upper decks. It is past daybreak by the time she comes to. Bride - with dozens of SAMPLE members and bound children around the deck's stage - asks her how she feels. Sylvie sighs at having been taken hostage for the second year in a row, and Bride says that he's jealous of whomever captured her the year prior. Sylvie asks if Huey Laforet was the one who had told him about Gretto, and Bride, honestly confused, asks who Huey is.
He sidesteps her question, and says that they have friends everywhere - even amongst the Advena Avis passengers. Sylvie changes her question - what are his people, exactly. Bride asks that she let him explain from the beginning, and he raises his hands. The blindfolded children immediately begin reciting their song. Bride's explanation takes several minutes long, and when he is finished he reaches for the syringes on the podium and jabs them into his neck. With something like a "tortured scream," Bride faces her with a look even more manic than before.
He asks her if she now understands why she must marry him, and Sylvie puzzles out what she's been told; as she understands it, once a harmonious balance is reached between Bride - the person sans pain - and Sylvie - the intended torture victim - Bride will be complete as a human. "Or some nonsense." Bride says that it's a bit more complex than that, but concedes she's grasped the ultimate distillation of the philosophy. He goes on to say that if Sylvie vehemently refuses, they do have another bride candidate in mind. However, as long as their faith continues to exist and as long as she lives as an immortal, she will one day become a bride candidate again (much to her misfortune).
Sylvie comments that for someone who intends to marry her he's awfully detached about everything, and then raises her head as she sees the Entrance in the distance. Bride announces that it is almost time for 'contact' - and notes that the Entrance has picked up speed. Sylvie argues that he won't get out of this unscathed, and he tranquilly suggests that they all move below deck, since it won't do for them to fall into the water.
And so, the Entrance and Exit make contact - their hulls skidding against each other before moving apart, causing the survivors on either ship to shake with the impact. The two ships swing around and repeat their movements about dozen times, each less ferocious than the last. After five minutes of these motions occur, the ships finally come to a halt.
During those five minutes, Bride addresses the hundred or so believers (who are bracing for the impacts amongst blood and strewn limbs) and tells them that once the ships make a full stop, they'll acquire their "sacrificial god." He mentions that the Mask Makers appear to be on the Entrance as well, but SAMPLE will end them without suffering - and he is then interrupted by a strange sight. He, Sylvie, and some of the others move to the bridge, and as they move they see a 'shark' flies towards them from the Entrance and flops onto the deck. Two people cross over from the Entrance to the Exit as well - one babyfaced immortal and a man clad in black, with a gun in each of his hands. The man in black immediately shoots the legs of the SAMPLE members standing by the doors to the lower decks, sending them to their knees.
As the believers prepare to attack, several rocket launchers are set off from the Entrance's upper deck and send shells scattering across the Exit's deck, each blowing up a dozen or so people at once. Bride or one of the surviving SAMPLE members in the bridge - about twenty or so - binds Sylvie to a chair.
They are soon greeted by Elmer, who steps into the bridge and says hello to everyone. Sylvie exclaims at his arrival, and he languidly asks how she is, joking that if this (the bindings) are a new hobby of hers, he won't stop her - though he'd like it if she could smile. In spite of his crumbling plans, Bride looks over to Elmer with joy and says that it is an honor to meet the person who was once their sacrificial god.
Elmer's eyes narrow, but he smiles as he replies that he'd thought this all might have had something to do with that. Bride inquires if that means he understands their goals, and Elmer answers that he understands them but can't accept them, since Sylvie is a good friend of his. He looks over to the children and with a quiet smile says that he'd really like to see them smile too, so he'd much appreciate it if Bride and SAMPLE could stop everything now. Bride says those are strange words, and Elmer points out that they're all using drugs and look so happy already, so what more do they want?
Bride answers stoically that what they want is peace of mind - or so says the holy book. They need the means to support and confirm their own happiness, and they need peace of mind since it speaks for their happiness as humans. If they do not have peace of mind, then they cannot be experiencing joy - just delusions. Elmer gives him a troubled grin and murmurs that three hundred years ago, the people of Lotto Valentino killed children because they'd wanted peace of mind. So people don't change, even after three centuries...Elmer (with a melancholic smile) says that perhaps it was because he'd understood that is why he became an immortal back then.
Bride asks him what he plans to do alone, and Elmer corrects him. He is not going to do anything; he can try and wish for his happiness, but Bride already looks truly happy. And even if Bride is to die, the drug will keep him happy until the end. So Elmer won't say anything. No...he can't say anything. Their chat is interrupted by Aging, who enters the room and begins firing at the SAMPLE members with her minigun, before switching to her Kuhkri knife and continuing the job.
Bride barely manages to escape the bridge, but his flight is halted by a young fellow whom Bride identifies as Luchino. Luchino doesn't deny it, and Bride excuses himself and attempts to pass the youth. Luchino asks him to wait, and Bride coldly says (still with that smile of joy) that he doesn't recall having any business with him. Luchino says that he has no idea who Bride or his people are but he can't help himself - he wants to know what they're after and why they had to kill his subordinates. Bride stops and answers nonchalantly that those people were "murdered by our desires."
Luchino steps forward and stabs Bride in the side with his stiletto. Bride, still under the effects of his drugs, does not register the pain and pushes Luchino to the floor with his abnormal strength, saying that he is in his way. With a disinterested smile and without looking at the youth, he proclaims that he and Luchino are almost eerily diametric opposites in both philosophies and actions. Bride does not have Luchino's resolve, and Luchino does not have Bride's faith. Bride states that resolve and faith might seem different yet similar, but they are actually on completely different vectors. "In other words, we can do nothing but pass by one another."
Luchino agrees, and reveals that he'd never intended to speak to Bride in the first place. He had been aware ever since Bride's people had murdered the other Mask Makers that he and Bride had neither semblances or parallels. That's why as a magician he'd been waiting for just the right timing.
A sudden force exerts itself on Bride, and he feels himself being dragged away. Unbeknownst to Bride, when Luchino stabbed him he'd wrapped an extremely powerful fibre used for levitation tricks around Bride's body - and the other end of the fibre was tied to the edge of Entrance.
Bride slides across the desk, is flung over the edge and dragged overboard by the fibre between the two ships. He manages to grab onto the lowest part of the Exit's metal railings, but with his sweaty palms he knows it'll only be a matter of time until he falls. At that very moment, Celice takes ahold of his arms, and Bride calls her by her false name (Lucotte).
Celice says that he's lighter than he looks, and that she'll tell him something important. Not Bride, the "insane cult leader," but Bride, the "insane husband who took me as his wife." She asks him if he understands: people can only grow stronger through pain. Thanks to what Bride has put her through, she now stands before him completely fine. Celice smirks, and says that her next words are for the "insane cult leader." With an elated smile, she orders him to die painlessly like the weakling he is, and holds onto his arms until the two ships skid together again.
Bride screams as his arms are severed by the impact and flung onto the deck. He falls, but is rescued from drowning by Fermet, who has climbed onto a large cruiser with several other surviving SAMPLE members. The dying Bride tells Fermet there is one thing he'd like to ask him. Addressing Fermet as "Viralesque," Bride asks him if he really had known about the Mask Makers this whole time, using SAMPLE for his own gains. Fermet takes off his mask and wraps red and black bandages around his head as he admits it to be so. Bride asks him why he'd done such a thing, and Fermet says to make a long story short - he did it because it entertained him.
Bride chuckles and tells Fermet that SAMPLE forgives him; after all, their doctrines do not deny any human pleasure even if it means SAMPLE's own demise. Fermet calls him a splendid leader, and Bride mumbles that that will soon come to an end. He steps towards the cruiser's railings, and reports that he's already left all matters concerning the holy book to his secretaries. He asks Fermet to take good care of the next Bride, and Fermet says that he understands.
Fermet then asks Bride what would he do if Fermet had a substance that could keep him alive, and Bride smiles. With his brain draining of dextrose, he says "I make it a personal policy to never use extra lives unless I'm playing a shooter in an arcade. It's a habit of mine from playing games. A loss is a loss. I. must. fear death. and. accept.--" Bride trails off and still smiling, he falls into the ocean, dead. At the same moment, a shark breaks the watery surface and swallows his lifeless body, chewing it to pieces.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- Bride is probably not his real name, since Illness becomes the "next Bride."
- Bride says that he graduated from a "no-name college" and that he can bake cookies, although he is afraid to let others taste them in the event that they aren't any good.
- Judging from the events in the church, it looks like his typical dosage of dextrose lasts just over thirty minutes.
- The 'Orihara' Bride mentions in 2002 is in fact Izaya Orihara, an information broker from Narita's light novel series Durarara!! .
- Bride shares a love of video games with Elmer.
- Before 2002, most if not all of Bride's previous temporary wives were ten-year-old girls whom he married at the moment of their deaths.
- Bride, like all the SAMPLE believers, possesses a certain superhuman strength.
- In Narita's author's notes for Blood Sabbath, he credits his good friend and fellow author Nasu Kinoko for the coining of Bride's name, and he thanks Asai Rabo "and friends" for helping him "with information in relation to Bride's characterization."