|“||House Dormentaire picked me up. They’re pretty easy to understand—it doesn’t matter if you're black or white, if you’ve got blue blood or not, or anything else. What they care about is how much you can help them. In other words, as long as you can make them more money, they’ll take you.||”|
House Dormentaire is a powerful and wealthy aristocratic family from Spain, nearly rivalling both House Medici and the Mars Family at the height of its power in the 1700s. The family has survived into the 1930s, and though its influence has declined remains one of the most wealthy and prominent financial conglomerates in the world.
Sometime in 1700, a Dormentaire son by the name of Gardi Dormentaire attempts to rape and murder Maribel Boroñal, a young aristocratic daughter of House Boroñal. He kills her parents when they try to save her, but is then murdered by Maribel in self-defense. Wanting to cover up Gardi's actions, the Dormentaires work out an arrangement with Maribel's brother Esperanza which exiles them both to the Italian port city Lotto Valentino; while Esperanza is given the position of city governor, Maribel is ordered to take the dead girl's name of Monica Campanella and forge a new identity for herself as a commoner.
Nine years later, Gardi's sister Lucrezia orders her bodyguard Carla Alvarez Santoña to lead a Dormentaire delegation to Lotto Valentino and find Gardi's killer, whom their Dormentaire spy believes is hiding in the city. This is a pretext for their true mission: Lucrezia and the Dormentaires have heard rumors that Lotto Valentino is rife with counterfeit gold and drugs—and something about immortality—and they want Carla to investigate those rumors and claim those riches (including the formula for the counterfeit gold) for the Dormentaires.
Several months later, Carla's delegation arrives in Lotto Valentino around the late autumn-winter of 1709 and make contact with Esperanza and Dalton Strauss. The delegation grows over the next few months as more and more soldiers make port in the city, which over time becomes used to the Dormentaires' presence. Trouble brews when Jean-Pierre Accardo's newest play is performed in theatres and Carla realizes that part of his play is based off House Dormentaire.
Months later in 1710, Monica Campanella turns herself in to the Dormentaires as Gardi's killer, and Carla is shocked to learn from Monica that Jean's play—the one currently performed in the city's theatre—now depicts the story of House Dormentaire and Gardi's murder. She manages to bring the play's theatrical run to a halt, but her Dormentaire soldiers are unable to find the now-vanished Jean. Thanks to the play, the Dormentaire delegation are forced to continue adhering to their decoy mission despite the fact that they already have Monica in their possession.
The Dormentaires keep Monica under lock and key on their gigantic black warship over the course of the next several months, during which time Monica gives birth. A day comes when Lotto Valentino finds itself ablaze, and Carla and her closest soldiers are knocked out on their ship. When she wakes to find one of her Dormentaire ships on fire, she declares that Lotto Valentino has made itself the enemy of House Dormentaire and that action will be taken in due course.
At Elmer C. Albatross' badgering, Carla makes him a Dormentaire spy.
By precisely one year later in 1711, the Dormentaires have taken full control over Lotto Valentino; the Dormentaire crest hangs from every building, and a 'floating fortress' of Dormentaire warships has been installed in its harbor. Meanwhile, Dormentaire-sponsored alchemists Victor Talbot and Szilard Quates arrive in the city under orders to continue the investigation into the counterfeit gold and drugs circulating the city.
At some point prior to their arrival Huey Laforet sneaks into Lucrezia's bedchambers and proposes an exchange: his counterfeit method in exchange for the use of the Dormentaires' alchemy workshop. Lucrezia agrees.
Multiple Dormentaire buildings suffer incendiary attacks during this period by The Mask Makers, including one of its firearm stores, one of its food stores, and eventually Szilard's ship and a manor on the hill. A ship carrying Lucrezia is due to arrive the day after Szilard's ship and the manor burn, only to explode while at sea in full view of those in the harbor. Lucrezia is presumed dead by the locals, Victor, Carla, and the rest of the Dormentaires. Over the next five days, the Dormentaire soldiers grow increasingly alarmed over the disappearance of the city's alchemists and increasingly desperate to take their revenge and find the culprits behind the attacks, lest the Dormentaires hold them responsible instead.
Several days later, several explosions rock the whole of Lotto Valentino. Carla tries and fails to prevent the alchemist-laden Advena Avis from leaving the city, and is shocked when Lucrezia proves to be alive and well. Lucrezia reveals that the entire incident was according to House Dormentaire's plan: the Dormentaires intended to take over the alchemists' research while letting the alchemists escape all along.
Although House Dormentaire has been on the decline since the modern era began, they are still considered an impressively wealthy financial conglomerate in the 1930s; not only are they still heavily economically active in Spain and Italy, they possess some amount of influence in the world economy. Part of their continued financial security is owed to what Victor calls their "centuries-long master plan for tax evasion," which consisted of them splitting up their fortune from overseas trade and stashing the portions all over the world
The Dormentaires are also active in alchemic research, including their research into homunculi and immortality. One of their test subjects includes Lord Avaro, whom Lucrezia made a complete immortal in the 1700s and lived on as a Dormentaire test subject for the next two hundred years.
One of the results of those two hundred years of experimentation is the homunculus Melvi Dormentaire, created from Lord Avaro's cells before 1930 with the intention of having him devour Szilard. When Melvi arrives onto the New York scene in February 1935, he is acting on Dormentaire instructions to become the subordinate to Huey and work with the Runorata Family. At least one Dormentaire ship accompanies his arrival, along with several seaplanes from Huey's faction Time. This is the same ship where Melvi keeps Ennis under Dormentaire guard after he kidnaps her, and the seaplanes are the same planes which fire blanks over Manhattan as part of his diversion.
Per Melvi's instructions, House Dormentaire organizes ships around the world which summon the 'demon' Ronny Schiatto continuously over the three-day period during which the Runoratas' casino party at Ra's Lance is taking place. Each ship is rigged with explosives set to ignite post-summoning, as the Dormentaires have no intention of letting the summoners keep whatever knowledge or power they ask of Ronny.
The Dormentaires have colluded not only with Huey and the Runoratas (the Dormentaires and the Runoratas remain officially unaffiliated), they have also enjoyed limited contact with Szilard's factions before his death in November 1930—Szilard routinely used some of their cash to buy the rare materials he needed to make his homunculi.
|Gardi Dormentaire||Son and heir (deceased)||Mortal Human|
|Lucrezia de Dormentaire||Daughter by blood||Complete Immortal|
|Carla Alvarez Santoña||Lucrezia's bodyguard; Commandant||Unknown|
|Szilard Quates||Sponsored Alchemist (-1711)||Complete Immortal|
|Victor Talbot||Sponsored Alchemist (-1711)||Complete Immortal|
|Huey Laforet||Sponsored Alchemist (technically)||Complete Immortal|
|Spies||Station and Status||Immortal Status|
|Lebreau Fermet Viralesque||Based in Lotto Valentino (1700s-)||Complete Immortal|
|Elmer C. Albatross||Based in Lotto Valentino; to Carla (1710-1711)||Complete Immortal|
|Melvi Dormentaire||To devour Szilard Quates (former)||Immortal Homunculus|
|Lord Avaro||Test Subject||Complete Immortal|
The family crest is that of a golden hourglass, surrounded by multiple circular designs. It bears a resemblance to the Medici crest, and has survived with the family into the 1930s.
- The hourglass motif of the Dormentaires has a history of use with pirates. Before the skull-and-crossbones design was popularized, pirates' flags had a multitude of designs—the most popular of them the hourglass. Blackbeard would eventually cement both the hourglass and skull-and-crossbones designs when he used them for his own ship.
- The inventor whom the Dormentaires hired to design and build the floating fortress is Carnald Strassburg, a character from Ryohgo Narita's light novel series Vamp!
- Since House Dormentaire had people continuously summon Ronny in 1935, it is clear that they know the secret to summoning him—though how is uncertain. Ronny has speculated that Lucrezia may have shared the secret with the summoners, and briefly considered Rosetta as a potential culprit as well.