Asher is an 18-year-old male, moderately tall, not particularly good looking, and sports a unathletic, build. He has hard black-hair and relatively small, dark-brown eyes that almost borderlines black in colour.
He is heavy despite his frame, preventing him from any fast, long-distance feats in battle.
Post - Battle of Beacon
While his dull sense of fashion persists, Asher has re-armed himself with more conventional physical protection for battle. His plaid shirts and dirty jeans were replaced with a half-plate set complete with greaves and a protective a layer of durable leather, all draped over by a warm jacket.
He has reduced his hairstyle significantly, instead wear slicked back bangs for a more pronounced and confident image. Far from a knight in shining armour, but a common and humble soldier instead.
Pre - Battle of Beacon
Asher had a variety of appearances but mostly dressed in a large collection of plaid patterned, long-sleeved collar-shirts. His favourite pattern was a non-uniform tint checkered shirt; he would roll up the sleeves of his shirts and left the top buttons unfastened, revealing a plain white t-shirt underneath. He preferred a pair of dark, purposely abused, and dirt-stained jeans over canvas or sweater pants but wore the latter options occasionally. Casual sweaters and plain t-shirts, crew and V neck, were common as well; rarer outfits include full-sleeve shirts, polos and leather jackets.
During battle and training, he wore stock protective gear provided by the academy. These included plated slacks, an armoured glove, and shoulder pauldron for his non-dominant arm.
A proper introvert, Asher does not necessarily dislike interaction and confrontation with others, but rather he does not wish to be constantly surrounded by social obligations and interactions. Doing so corrodes his mental focus; thus, he lacks large numbers of friends, is constantly exhausted, and is prone to episodes of mild depression as a consequence should he not have time to himself.
Asher is a strong advocate against killing, and he actively reminds his team that killing is only justifiable in self-defence. This stems from his experience with the near death of his teammate, Rayne, by his hands.
Outside of this, Asher is shown to be quite passionate about anime, video games, and especially cooking. He is also speculated to be a lolicon.
Post - Fall of Beacon
Asher appears more outgoing than before, willing to initiate conversations for the sake of them, and is able to make fun of himself more often as well. This personality trait is forced, and stems from his need to reassure and comfort those around him about his apparent death and unexpected return.
He has grown to be a bit more cynical of the world around him, not readily coming to the aid of anyone in need unless specifically ask for help. His philosophy centres around that fact that individuals can only help themselves and that outside help is only an aid to a journey of self-redemption.
His lack of humour and slow social skills have been all thrown out, although when irritated, he becomes eerily submissive.
Pre - Fall of Beacon
He was mature beyond his age, which made him kind and respectful to all, but selfishly selfless. His opinions were rarely biased which also made him a less gullible individual, but he is not above giving someone the benefit of the doubt. Above all, he respected the rules and found an odd satisfaction with correctly predicted outcomes.
Asher’s moral compass was extremely distinct and sometimes took over his introverted and pacifistic nature which may have lead to brash and forceful actions or decisions. However, he mostly dislikes fighting.
Astraeus and Eos
Astraeus and Eos are a great shield and a broadsword respectively and crafted by his teacher, Chiyo Hāto. In addition, the combination of the two results in a heavy, two-handed mace-sword called Astrea.
Its construction method and molecular structure is identical to that of the swords crafted by Astray Hāto, Chiyo's older brother and Heart's father. However, its divergence starts with the presence of a shield.
Astraeus is a broad sword with a significantly lengthened shaft, and its guarded houses a decorative design resembling a skull which envelopes a device of Chiyo’s own creation, the Dust Revolution Engine (DRE).
Eos, on the other hand, is a double-sided great shield which stretches about 1.5 metres in length and 0.7 metres in width. In addition to functioning as a shield, it is also a sheath for Astraeus. Furthermore, Eos houses multiple hollow channels stemming from the sheath within, and branches out along the edges. The shield can be attached to Asher's arm, or made to levitate above his arm via electro-magnetic fields generated from his left gauntlet. This allows for fluid motion without the shield getting in the way.
Eos can expand, with the help of several hydraulic pistons, increasing its protective surface area by 2 square metres; it also exposes more of its inner hollow channels as well as expand its attack range.
AstraeaThe sheathed form of Astraeus and Eos. It makes use of Astraeus’ long handle and Eos’ immense weight to present itself an enormous mace-sword able to cleave flesh and crush armour with little effort.
In this form, Astraeus’ DRE and the channels within Eos work together to produce various effects.
In addition to Dust based applications listed below, the channels allow for an anti-Dust shock-wave to be formed with a radius of 5 meters, canceling any elemental attacks or buffs corresponding to the Dust used to generate the it. The shock-wave consumes 1 whole Dust canister, lasts for 1 second, and disappears immediately afterwards. The barrier feature is unique to the DRE and impossible to replicate on the DIE.
Dust Revolution Engine
The Dust Revolution Engine (D.R.E.) implemented in Astraeus works similarly to Astray Hāto's Dust Injection Engine (DIE) in that they both function to efficiently ignite Dust in a weapon. However, the DRE operates with a rotational drum chamber when igniting Dust, allowing for optimal combustion of Dust within the chamber (due to an increased exposure to the air). This results in a cleaner burn and higher efficiency of Dust usage. On a typical field mission, Asher will carry enough Dust canisters for 10 Dust based buffs/attacks.
As with a similar mechanism seen in the DIE, the DRE is operated by a simple twist of the sword's handle to start. In addition, the rotation of the drum generates balancing forces that allow for the massive weapon to be lifted with ease.
Akin to Astray Hato’s Gerbera Breaker, Astraeus' Dust attacks vary in variety but depend on the revolution rate of the Dust Revolution Engine. The Dust applications are as listed:
Used as a range augmenter, this type of Dust allows for 2 types of attacks depending on the RPM (Rotations per minute) of the DRE. A slow revolution will produce a gentle burn, igniting the blade for several minutes.
At high revolutions, all the Dust is consumed explosively, causing a jet stream of hot gas and plasma to shoot from the blade. The shape of the projectile depends on what form is used to unleash the attack.
When unleashed using Astraeus, the broadsword form, the projectile is narrow, more powerful and has a range of about 10 metres. When unleashed using Astrea, the projectile widens significantly, but is less powerful and the range is reduced to 5 metres.
A control-type Dust, Earth Dust attacks only function as utility rather than to improve attack power. A slow revolution will produce a short lasting (10 minutes) sandstorm which obscures vision within a 20-metre radius. However, the weapon acts as a generator and cannot be disturbed.
Meanwhile, high revolution ignitions require the addition of injecting the elemental energy into the ground, causing linear earth spikes to sprout forth; the maximum range is about 20 metres. The spikes persist and act like walls and are useful for zone control or blocking off routes.
Wind Dust can be used to create powerful storms in a 25-meter radius and, while not strong enough to carry individuals off the ground, sporadic wind speeds do make mobility quite difficult; projectiles can also veer off course if the wind is not accounted for.
Wind Dust can also be used for accelerated movement by rapidly expelling wind energy opposite of the direction one would like to travel in. This allows for forceful dodges, rapid gap-closing, double jumping and lengthy air-combos.A more lethal application comes in a ranged projectile of pressurized air. It can travel at speeds fast enough, and with enough force, to cut 10 centimetres of steel from a distance up to 100 meters. Beyond that range, the projectile rapidly fades.
Ice dust can be creatively executed in manners such as immobilization or area of control similar to Earth Dust.
Astray Hāto has personally even generated an artificial snow-fall by pumping the ignited Dust straight into the air to impress female friends with romantic environments.
Lightning Dust does not have a multitude of purposes other than an additional projectile attack or elemental weapon buff.
Breaker was a traditional great-sword; it was not crafted at any combat academy and Asher himself was ignorant of its origins. The sword is the last piece created by Heart’s father, Astray Hāto - mountain blacksmith, and was found in the hidden basement of Heart's home during Asher's training trip in preparation for the impending attempt on his life. Breaker was found along with a note attached stating, "This is the blade that will make all those who oppose [his] daughter’s right to live burn."
The weapon appears to be a lengthy, double-edged great-sword of approximately 90 centimetres in length and 7 centimetres in width. The guard of the sword was made of black carbon steel decorated with white porcelain which also develops downwards towards the pommel to serve as a hand guard. The sheath that held it was crafted out of an aluminum-steel alloy and appears to be hand painted with expertise and care.
The sword appeared to be in the style of curved eastern swords such as katanas and scimitars but was double-edged and bore the weight, length, and width of larger, Western-European swords such as claymores and Zweihanders (two-handers).
A little purple heart-shaped charm dangled off the pommel.
The Breaker possessed a decently sharp edge. Anything it cut, it cut cleanly. In addition, a unbearably painful burn would come from any flesh wound created by this weapon due to the slight Burn Dust residue that rubbed off the blade as it made contact. The source of this dust stemmed from a special sharpening stone, made of a mixture of Dust, silicate particles, and clay, built inside the blade's sheath which sharpened and re-applied the residue every time the sword was sheathed and unsheathed. This residue only lasted for one strike and must be reapplied.
The construction of such a sturdy blade lay in its crafting method, something that only lives within Heart's mind, in the grave of her father, and the Hāto. She has yet to share the secrets as to anyone, unfortunately, scars tend to take time to heal.
Fighting Style and Abilities
Although Asher has improved since the fall of Beacon, he continues to be lacking in both fighting prowess and Dust knowledge; at least when compared to the rest of his team. Instead, Asher's proficiencies lie in basics of combat, and his resourcefulness in any situation.
Asher's initial fighting style, which utilized the Breaker, and his current style, which utilizes both Astraeus and Eos, is similar and can be considered the same as the origin of both comes from Chiyo Hāto.
The fighting style manipulates defensive/offensive sword stances but is most effective when used with a secondary weapon. Stances are determined by the shield, Eos, as its mounting and deploying mechanism allows Asher to change his approach appropriately. There are mainly two positions:
Where the forearm is braced with the length of the shield with the fist facing the flat top. The shield is deployed fully into a tower shield in this stance to provide maximum protection. Blocking simply requires the user to raise his fist in front of his chest to be in an optimal position to take attacks.
Where the forearm is braced with the length of the shield with the fist facing the pointed tip of the shield. Blocking which this method is rather clumsy as it reduces the shield to a glorified arm brace, but allows for the shield to be used as a bashing or secondary cutting tool as well as enabling pinpoint parrying. The shield is retracted in this form to allow for maximum mobility Asher also makes use of the sharp tip to plant himself into the ground and perform vaults over his own shield for an additional angle of attack.
Despite all of Asher’s training, hand-to-hand combat is not part of his repertoire. What he does have is basic knowledge of proper unarmed fighting stances and his occasional boxing workout routines.
Semblance: Heart’s Burden
Asher’s Semblance could be considered the primal nature of Aura which states that it is the manifestation of one’s soul, it shields ones’ hearts and bears one’s burdens.
It allows him to "treat" wounds or sicknesses by simply taking it from them via physical contact. For example, a cut on an ally can be completely taken by him, and it will appear roughly in the same place on Asher’s body. He can even take on someone's cold if he chose to.
He occasionally used this to remove some pain which his sword, Breaker, caused.
A whole wound or sickness can be transferred fully despite its lethality; therefore,he could kill himself aiding someone else. This was was the case during his first meeting with his partner, Heart.
In addition, the ability grants a massive Aura reserve and completely overtakes the passive healing of Aura to the point where moderate wounds appear to start mending the second they are dealt, owing to Asher's inherent tenacity. In exchange, the physical shield and sixth sense provided by Aura is taken to its weakest level, meaning he must rely on his teammates for any, and all, non-visual information and flank protection.
Those who wish to take him down will do well to isolate him and concentrate attacks on his flanks, in addition, to take advantage of his lower sensing capabilities.
sher C. Stahl was born in Mistral to two working-class citizens, but his family later immigrated to Vale in hopes of a better life. His parents opted to raise him in academics rather than enroll him in combat school as they did not want to endanger their only child.
It was during first grade where he met Rayne Annarosé, an member of the White Truth cult and his future teammate. The two would be oblivious of each other's existence until Asher's third year of high school when Rayne sought out Asher to assist her in locating a local park.
However, the same event caused him to revisit the location at night which led to the discovery of a girl, whom he later named Heart - another future teammate, lying beaten and close to death by the hands of Rayne Annarosé. In his attempted to help the girl, he unknowingly activated his Aura and Semblance, and was blown into a coma.
Heart survived thanks to Asher, but he remained comatose for two days after being discovered and transported to a hospital by a bystander. After his recovery, Asher offered Heart a place to stay, which she gratefully accepted.
However, they were quickly re-acquainted with Rayne Annarosé during an outing. Rayne, dumbfounded by Heart's survival, promised to finish the job. This prompted Heart to train Asher for their inevitable confrontation. Training took place at Heart's home, a village in the mountains of Vale. There, Asher found the sword, Breaker, which he used to defeat Rayne.
With Rayne's defeat, Heart was eager for revenge, but Asher, seeing the pain his actions caused, stopped her. Instead, he undertook Rayne's recovery which took 2 weeks.
During the last days of Rayne's recovery and before both her and Asher needed to return to their studies, Rayne had requested that Asher accompany her on a walk through Forever Fall before she leaves. There, Rayne gave her first meaningful thanks and confessed her feelings. However, a King Taijitu delayed Asher's response, luckily, it was quickly dispatched by a short, flamed haired Faunus girl by the name of Tana Bunsen.
Their chance meeting with Tana became uneventful when she recognized Rayne as her parent's killer and unleashed a decade long wrath onto them. Asher came to Rayne's rescue rather unsuccessfully, prompting Rayne to confront her own actions and issue a heart-felt apology which Tana was forced to accept. With Tana's departure, Asher and Rayne cemented their relationship.
On the first day of their return to school, Asher resumed his seemingly normal life, but the organization which had ordered Rayne to elimnate Heart had also ordered his death. A group of twenty operatives arrived at his school that day which caused a huge firefight within the school. Coincidentally, Rayne, Tana, and Heart came to his rescue and prevented the attempt on his life.
Several weeks after the incident, Asher continued to attend to his studies until an offer from Beacon's Headmaster arrived at his doorstep, resulting in his joining of Team HART as a student of Beacon Academy.
Post - Fall of BeaconDuring the attack on Beacon Academy, Team HART found themselves defending the workers of a student shopping plaza. Despite fending off most of the horde, one team member, Tana Bunsen, was critically injured during the fight.
It was during the calm which an armed group of White Truth insurgents, lead by Selena Schiess, chose to strike. The group took Rayne Annarosé hostage and attempted escape via a stolen Altesian dropship. Asher managed to board in an attempt to save Rayne, but was ejected from the aircraft, falling presumably to his death.
In actuality, he had survived the fall in a conveniently placed swimming pool of punk/rock musician and materialistic entrepreneur Chiyo Hāto, who recognized the sheath he carried as one of her brother's work. Unable to contact his team, Asher ended up training under Chiyo.
Homecoming - Team HART Manga
Several months later, Asher returned to his team at the Heart à la Mode Café, but not before confronting something sinister that lurked beneath the surface.
A girl beaten half to death that Asher met in his local park. She initially had no name and was only given the name, "Heart", by Asher himself. Asher is very protective of her as he views Heart as a vulnerable individual despite her combat prowess. Heart herself is as close to Asher is to his shadow.
His significant other. Rayne and Asher knew of each other since the first grade but did not interact or think much of the other. While the relationship was initially somewhat forced and one-sided, Asher has declared that he does have feelings for Rayne and will try to develop them as they continue on the path.
The strong and immature little girl who might as well be a twelve year old. Tana is mostly a play thing for Asher but there are times where Tana seems more mature than Asher in the way that they think. Their relationship hasn't changed much since her growth spurt, but Asher is vocal about Tana's new smoking habit.
His savior and teacher during the aftermath of the Fall of Beacon, Asher and Chiyo have a bestfriend relationship rather than a teacher/student one as Asher enjoys the more sophisticated side of Chiyo and vice versa.
- The origin story is based off of the light novel, Kizumonogatari from the Monogatari series and his relationship with the character Heart is also loosely based on two similar characters
- Asher's colour is the colour of soot (go figure) which is black
- Asher's Post-Fall design is not a based after Natsuki Subaru from Re:Zero but rather Matsumoto Ryouji from the (NSFW) [es no] doujinshi series
- His post-FoB weapons, Astraeus and Eos, and by extention Astraea are named after the Greek gods
- Astraea is the daughter of Astraeus and Eos, and considering they are sword and sheath, it's a play on intercourse
- The shield's design is based off of ZGMF-X10A Freedom Gundam's shield from Mobile Suit Gundam SEED
- Asher was the thought process of how to incorporate my reason and logic as a theme in a character
- The development of the character also mirrors my own mental development with two distinctive designs, the pre and post FoB designs reflect this