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Sakaala
Race Arrancar
Birthday 31 December
Age 30 (Physical)
2000+ (Actual)
Gender Male
Height 198 cm (6'6")
Weight 91 kg (200 lb.)
Aspect Torment
Hollow Hole Base of the throat
Professional Status
Previous Partner Kentarō Akiyama
Base of Operations Hueco Mundo
Zanpakutō
Resurrección Mantícora
First Appearance
Story Debut Crosscurrent
Roleplay Debut Worlds Apart


Sakaala is an ancient male Arrancar. He was referred to as "The Scourge of Soul Society" (尸魂界の惨劇, sourusosaeti no sangeki) and "The Unfettered King" (自由な王, jiyūnaō) in the past.

Appearance

Sakaala is an unusually tall and lean, relatively young-looking male of unclear ethnicity. While slender, he has got toned, wiry muscles. In addition, the shade of his complexion is unnaturally pale. With a diamond-shaped face, he is possessed of somewhat serpentine features and a perky nose. His platinum blond hair is rather long, with a few strands hanging loosely over his left eye and the rest normally styled in a rope braid that reaches below his shoulders. He is always seen clean-shaven. The colour of his eyes is cool grey.

The remnants of his Hollow mask linger on the right side of his face. They bear an uncanny resemblance to an opera mask, though with a single small horn protruding upward from above his eyebrow ridge. They cover about a half of his face, including the nose, though only a portion of the right cheek. The estigma on his face takes the form of four small, deep pink symbolic stars on his left cheek. The location of his Hollow hole is the base of his throat.

The usual attire of Sakaala is fairly extravagant. The only other piece of clothing upon the upper part of his body is typically a small vest made from white leather, adorned with some spikes and small chains. Usually, he keeps it unbuttoned. Moreover, he has rather tight-fitting trousers made from white leather as well, and shoes of similar make. Sometimes, he also wears a white hooded cloak.

Personality

Unfettered - that is one of the best terms one can use to describe the peculiar person that is Sakaala. Born of insanity, despair and trepidation, and with gargantuan power unlike any other Hollow of his time, he accepts no authority. There is no-one above him, everyone but a lowly worm in his eyes, and he does not tolerate rules or laws that could hinder his excesses. After all, he is a capricious man. Whenever he sets his sights on something, he pursues that goal with reckless abandon, to the exclusion of all else, and anything that dares stand on his path is immediately, ruthlessly removed.

Both during conversation and combat he exhibits a habit of gradually dismantling the views and fighting styles of his opponents. Every once in a while he indulges in a display of brute force, true, but generally prefers more subtle means of destroying others. More thorough. He lets the enemy act unhindered at first, so as to observe them, analyse them carefully and get to know them. Then, Sakaala will reveal his sadomasochistic approach to combat, tantalising and tormenting the opponent at nearly every step. He has the power to eradicate most of them with a single attack, sometimes he even alludes to that more or less subtly, yet normally he tends to point out and exploit their many flaws. They struggle, lash out at him viciously, attempt to determine his weaknesses or to beat him at his own game. All the while Sakaala himself acts with an apparent lack of effort, evades or blocks powerful strikes and deals heavy blows of his own casually, nonchalantly. Never to be shocked or worried, even at the precipice of alleged defeat - because to him, the outcome of any battle, the next victory, is inevitable, a matter of time dependent solely on his whim.

Self-absorbed, arrogant, condescending - Sakaala has displayed no shortage of negative traits during his long life. He treats people as objects, toys, tools. Persecutes them, abuses, exploits, tampers with them. He knows no bounds, there is nothing too extravagant for his taste, and he is inhumanly unflinching in his approach to whatever he finds worthy of his attention. Sakaala devotes his existence to enjoyment, and, as a Hollow, his definition of enjoyment tends to differ severely from that of ordinary Souls. He rapes, pillages and burns. There is nothing sacred to him, no words or actions that could prevent him from once again indulging in his dark desires.

And he is charismatic, drawing people like moths clinging to bright light, to his warped, twisted "cause". He has a way with words, the ability to speak of and present the atrocities he has committed as misinterpreted, that it is the Soul Society who paint him a villain. That he is a revolutionary instead, free from the chains and shackles of normal Souls, determined to bring them absolute freedom as well. Many follow him, intoxicated with the belief that they are no longer subject to any arbitrary restrictions, in truth, ignorant of the fact they have been manipulated and set on a course to utter destruction sooner or later. For Sakaala has a penchant for acting on impulse, and no-one is safe from his whims. Even in battle he will repeatedly address the enemy, manipulating them troughout the engagement. Perhaps, providing a hint or two so that they can fight him more efficiently and extend the duration of their existence for a little while longer. Perhaps, provoking or coercing them to unveil their special abilities, their trump cards, encouraging them to act on impulse or commit mistakes he is more than eager to exploit ruthlessly. Each battle is like a violent performance with Sakaala as both the director and the main protagonist of the play, acting out a preferably gripping story which unavoidably leads to his victory.

He is the epitome of vanity, relentlessness, immorality, ferocity, and extravagance. Among the many monsters that populated the ancient past of Soul Society he is one of the darkest, the topic of many an eerie legend or scary bedtime story even nowadays. For he is without fetters, and in his presence all fetters are undone, physical, mental, spiritual, leading downward a spiral of torment and madness. Ultimately, Sakaala is the apex predator of Hueco Mundo. He is no warrior, for he lacks a genuine cause to fight for, the intricacies and philosophy of martial arts or magic elude him. But he is a sophisticated predator, a superpredator, and combat is both his cause and philosophy. Not merely the people themselves but their worldviews, insecurities and flaws, his prey.

History

The Devourer of Hueco Mundo

Vicious. Ever since the day that single particular Soul did not transition to the Soul Society, perhaps in an attempt to exact revenge from beyond grave, or simply unable to accept that their worldly existence had come to an end, the being that would one day become Sakaala, the Unfettered King, was vicious. Assuming its beastly form, the now-Hollow continued his hostile existence, perhaps giving rise to the mythical manticore. Unusually powerful, unusually intelligent, it was the bane of many men and women, forever hungry, unrelenting. But after many years of barely satiating its hunger everlasting with such miniscule amounts of spiritual energy, the Hollow eventually moved to Hueco Mundo, the sombre realm of much greater opportunities to such a nightmarish wraith.

The perpetual hunt continued. The Hollow paid no heed to the abominable, terrifying forms of its peers, their special abilities and power, their own animalistic drive to survive and grow stronger. For the Hollow was only concerned with its own agenda, its own development. So it pursued and killed, ruthless, unflinching, with brief periods of rest between day-long massacres, hours on end of constant bloodshed. After consuming each successive victim the Hollow grew stronger, tougher, faster, winding up the spiral of cannibalism with each feast. One day, there were many Hollows populating the white deserts of Hueco Mundo. But soon they became scarce, hunted down, little more than fodder to the voracity and ambition of that single specimen. Until a group of powerful Hollows assembled, with that specimen among them, to participate in one final struggle. They fought and devoured, emerging on top a pile of corpses only to drop dead and form a new peak. In the midst of that slaughter they transformed, hundreds of Hollows fusing into about a dozen of towering monstrosities known as Menos Grande.

The vicious Hollow suddenly became one amongst many tormented souls occupying a single vessel. But that status was short-lived. Self-centred, adamant, the Hollow immediately rose above its peers and asserted his dominance, crushed them under his heel to wrest control of that colossal body all for himself. They became fuel for his rage and determination, and the first action of that Gillian-class Menos was to pounce upon his closest peer and sink his teeth into its neck. Soon, from the dozen of newborn Menos Grande that single one remained, only to wander off back into the white expanse afterward. With the combined power of many other Hollows at his fingertips, there was barely any opposition to his incessant advance. It was only a matter of time until the Gillian reached the next stage of evolution and transformed into an Adjuchas. With a smaller, more sleek body, not unlike that of the original manticore-like Hollow, but more developed, exponentially more powerful. In whole groups the remaining Hollows were fleeing at his approach, but there was no respite, no mercy. Only death. They were cattle, and he was the butcher. In the end, the Adjuchas inevitably achieved the final stage of evolution and became a remarkable Vasto Lorde.

And everything changed.

All of a sudden, the Hollow realised he had reached a limit. After so many years of gruelling fight for survival, the inhuman ordeal he had persevered, the vicious cycle of cannibalism and evolution he had prevailed, he was at his limit. There was nothing else to achieve. Just the empty, lifeless plains and dunes around him. No more successes. No more power. For the first time in his long existence the Hollow despaired, realising that in climbing to the highest peak, he had nowhere else to go in the aftermath. He had accomplished his goal, and there was nothing else. Eventually, unable to accept that, that anything could be imposed on him by anyone or anything, the Vasto Lorde sank his claws into his Hollow mask, the grisly remains of his heart, and tore off a half of it to cast it onto the white sand in a gesture of vicious denial. And with that act he serendipitously came across the only way for him to progress once again. With his mask cracked, he underwent another change, acquiring a Human-like form and Shinigami-like powers, becoming an Arrancar.

In the meantime, concerned about the inexplicable purge of Hollows, the Balancers of Souls sent a small squad to investigate the issue. After some time they came across a source of unbridled tremendous power, a single eerie lantern in the middle of an eternal lifeless night. They were outmatched and destroyed by the newborn hybrid. Nevertheless, in visiting that sombre realm they reminded the advanced Hollow of the existence of another realm. Previously, it paid little attention to those swordsmen, martial artists and mages pursuing his kind, dismissing them and occassionaly slaying them out of annoyance. But then, with Hueco Mundo nearly devoid of life, the Arrancar could move to another world, a world of endless opportunities, more fit to serve as a path for his never-ending progress. Thus, he manifested a dimensional portal with his newfound power and relocated to the Soul Society.

The first time he was confronted by the denizens of that realm, they demanded to know his identity. And, for the first time willing to actually interact with someone else, the Arrancar mused about a name for himself, and replied: Sakaala.

The Scourge of Soul Society

For many years, Sakaala would travel across the spiritual realm, enamoured with the sheer variability Soul Society offered compared to the bleak and uninteresting Hueco Mundo. He had grown weary of co-existing, or rather exterminating fellow single-minded monsters who all shared a common goal. Instead, he observed the myriad different people inhabiting that world, their entertainment and daily hardships, their suffering and joy. Over time, he learnt much about them, about the laws and organisation that tied them. As such, he was also perplexed. In Hueco Mundo there were no rules, no authority, only survival of the fittest. But in Soul Society, weak mingled with strong, sought their assistance and protection. Everything and everyone was subject to order, restrained by morality, obeying commands. From the newborn child of a pair of beggars up to and including a respectable head of a Noble House, they were bound.

That led to an obvious conclusion - that he was unlike anyone else. With the remnats of his Hollow mask concealing a part of his face, colourful spots on his cheek, and a hole piercing the base of his throat, he was a caricature of a Shinigami, bearing uncanny resemblance yet not quite the same. So he was treated with animosity, apprehension, disgust. People feared him, avoided or attacked him. In fact, they wanted to impose their arbitrary rules upon him, attempted to comprehend him through the prism of their limited perception, forcibly integrate him into that one giant community of eternal prisoners or destroy him so that there would be no-one free amongst them, no-one truly free, exposing and highlighting their own metaphorical confinement solely through the fact of existing. But Sakaala paid no heed to their threats and warnings. He did as he pleased, forever unchained. He killed and abused with impunity, as no warrior who stood on his way proved able to stop him. There was no area he did not trespass, no rule he did not violate. In that world of duress and shaky order he was a force of pure chaos, unrestrained and unabated. He killed and ravaged with reckless abandon, relishing his unique status and unrivalled power.

There was only one source of concern: the Seireitei. As incredibly powerful and reckless he was, Sakaala was not a fool. He had learnt quickly of the Thirteen Divisions, each a warband of its own led by a formidable warrior. He did not fear armies, he did not fear their individual leaders, but to engage the whole military organisation was not a sensible idea, to put it mildly. As such, he took another approach. A death of a thousand cuts. He was the man-shaped plague of the Rukongai, elusive like a wraith, abrupt and decisive like death itself. With time, the scum and villainy of the Soul Society outskirts began following him, enchanted by his inhumanly unfettered nature, virtually worshipping his godlike might. And Sakaala did not mind, for why would he prevent others from finding pleasure in unchaining their shackles and letting their primal insticts guide them? With nary an effort on his part he managed to accumulate his own warband, a loose association of thieves, murderers and lunatics, slowly but surely. Gradually, he was becoming an ever greater threat to the stability of the whole Soul Society. However, the Shinigami had other concerns at the same time and, inevitably, clashed with the Quincy in a bloody war.

They emerged victorious, but decimated and enfeebled. Sakaala was eager to exploit that opportunity. The atrocities committed by him and his warband escalated rapidly, drawing the ravaged Soul Society toward the depths of Hell. There were few opponents left worthy of his attention, and amongst them there was one particularly stubborn specimen: Third Division Captain Kentarō Akiyama. One of the few who was able to put up a good fight and survive their encounters, though not quite win any of the engagements. Nevertheless, he piqued Sakaala's curiosity with his prowess, his attitude, his ideals. The Arrancar recognised Akiyama's disillusionment with the world he was forced to protect with his life. Ultimately, they clashed once more, and once Sakaala had got rid of nuisances accompanying the Captain, he began fighting with words in addition to actions. Soon, the resolve of his opponent wavered when the extent of corruption and hypocrisy of the Gotei 13 was revealed, their alleged lies uncovered to him. In the end, Akiyama accepted Sakaala's offer to join him and his "cause", the first and only time the Arrancar actively recruited someone. A decision that was half-pragmatic, seeing as he reforged one of his greatest enemies into his own second-in-commad, but also a display of his whimsical, curious disposition. For he wanted to discover how low could a former hero fall, and savour the misery of the latter's former allies forced to fight him to the bitter end.

Unfortunately for Sakaala, he had a way with words, but he could not resist indulging in his excesses. It was inevitable for Akiyama to discover the dissonance between the things Sakaala said and the atrocities he committed on a daily basis, slaughtering and devastating mercilessly whilst claiming to merely uproot the hypocrisy of Soul Society and grant common people freedom. The truth was, the Arrancar never did anything for anyone else but himself. Others were tools, toys, pets to him, and he manipulated them with disturbing delight. His capricious nature, though, prevented him from following through any scheme or charade to the end, and Kentarō eventually saw through that ruse despite his own instability and doubts. He left suddenly to vanish without a trace. Annoyed, Sakaala decided the former Captain had to be punished appropriately for refusing to play along any more, depriving the Arrancar of his favourite pastime.

The obvious target was one of the high-ranking Noble Families, or rather, their estate. In order to lure Kentarō out and spite him at the same time, Sakaala and his warband ravaged the estate. After all, the Arrancar knew of the intimate bond between his temporary comrade and one of the ladies of that house: Hitomi Akui. The woman herself decided to face him, as she was a powerful warrior in her own right, and challenged him with her Bankai. Alas, Sakaala had defeated many an esteemed Bankai user before, and in spite of her valiance Hitomi was unable to overcome him as well. She perished in battle, her body unceremoniously slumped on a pile of the many corpses of her servants, guardians, and family. In a cruel twist of fate Akiyama had already decided to return from his self-imposed exile, just in time to witness his last tie to Soul Society had been cut off mercilessly in his absence.

Sakaala welcomed his bygone comrade, elated and quick to mock him. Kentarō, on the other hand, was not amused. He struck the Arrancar so swiftly the latter did not have a chance to react. Members of the warband perished or fled as Akiyama finally unleashed his pent-up anger in a spectacle of earth-shaking devastation. Meanwhile, Sakaala recovered and faced the former Captain in cataclysmic battle. They clashed in an epic contest of wit, skill, spiritual power, and resolve. Their battle raged across the whole region, forests, wastelands and a mountain range, carving a wedge of utter devastation throughout the landscape. For a time Sakaala had control of the fight, as he had had so many times before, even in the wake of his opponent's blood-boiling fury. However, in his excess, as he gradually gained an even greater advantage and drove Kentarō further down the spiral of madness, he unwittingly became the architect of his own doom.

The infernal fire of rage he fanned within Akiyama cleansed the Hakudaka's mind of insecurities and doubt that had forever plagued him. With his inner conflict gone at last but a single goal remained: to exact vengeance on the one most responsible for his misery, the one who twisted and misguided him, the one who killed his beloved – Sakaala. In a display of indignation so profound that it allowed him to ascend beyond mortal limitations, Kentarō awakened his full power and used it to relentlessly pummel the Arrancar, blow after blow. For the longest time undefeated, always nonchalant and careless, Sakaala ultimately found himself cornered, overpowered, outmatched. Unable to regain control no matter what he did or said. But rather than flee or beg for mercy that would never be granted, he fought.

Maddened by accomplishing much more than he had hoped for, he fought until the bitter end. He gave it his all, landed more hits and inflicted more wounds than one could readily count, endured as many in return. Unleashed the full extent of his tremendous power and, inevitably, lost. Struck down by a mighty blow at his peak. His body was obliterated, his essence absorbed by Hell, where he would finally be punished for the uncountable crimes and atrocities he had committed throughout his violent life. The Scourge of Soul Society was no more.

The Tormentor of Hell

Bound and imprisoned for the first time in his existence, Sakaala suffered punishment reserved for the most heinous of Togabito. Not for long, however. Still possessed of enormous power and an undying drive to revel in absolute freedom, he forcibly unchained his shackles and destroyed his captors. Of course, he attempted to flee the horrible realm shortly afterward, only to find himself unable to. No portal or trick of spatial manipulation was enough to open an entry to the rest of the spiritual realms, a dimensional safeguard to render the ultimate prison truly inescapable.

Frustrated but curious, the Arrancar resolved instead to stay in Hell for the time being. To combat the Togabito, the Kushanāda, and the Yōkai, to explore its several vast levels, to challenge and disrupt the system. To roam freely the realm of eternal imprisonment, to punish the punished and the punishers themselves, to seek entertainment in a place of damnation. That satisfied him for a while. But he would remember the incomparably more abundant sources of enjoyment present in the Soul Society, ripe for the picking but inaccessible, and the man who dared defy and kill him. Every now and then he would attempt to escape, in vain. But he would remember, and he would try.

And, eventually, he succeeded.

Plot

Powers and Abilities

Trivia

  • Sakaala was conceived as a foil and the nemesis of Tōsō.
  • His battle theme is Blue Gender OST - Bluff.
  • In Japanese, Sakaala would refer to himself with the informal pronoun ore (俺), which establishes a sense of masculinity and superiority, and might be considered rude under certain circumstances. Though there exists an even more arrogant ore-sama variant, Sakaala cannot be bothered to pronounce that each time he speaks and as such prefers the shorter version.
  • The author's choice for his hypothetical voice actors are Unshō Ishizuka and Steven Blum, who voiced the Naruto character Zabuza Momochi in Japanese and English, respectively.

Appearances

Bleach Renascence

Obsolete

Battles

Participants Chapter(s) Result
Sakaala vs. Kentarō Akiyama (Flashback) Rise/Fall Loss
Sakaala vs. Fuyuko Kannazuki & Haruto Satsuki Unfettered Win
Sakaala vs. Grimmjow Jaegerjaquez Terrors of the Dunes Win

References

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