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A kingdom for the best of you. A slash for the rest of you!
— Sophinx Riddleton
Sophinx Riddleton[she/her] is the daughter of the Princess and John from The Traveling Companion by Hans Christian Andersen.
A cut above the rest
Her femininity is weaponized
Wants complete control of her life
You’ll love her or hate her, usually both. Sophinx is equal parts a well mannered princess and a ruthless villain. Neither is a cover for the other. She incites enough fear to scare off peering eyes while maintaining grace and intrigue. Sophinx is as admirable as she is terrifying.
Part of what makes Sophinx so terrifying is her authenticity. Like her human based memorabilia, she does not need to fake it when she already has real material to work with. Sophinx does not lie when she gleefully elaborates on her future plans, all in bloody, gut-wrenching detail. (The parts she would disclose to her suitors, at least.) She has a strong attention to detail and ensures that even the subtlest things work to her advantage.
Sophinx is confident about herself and her abilities so she proudly shows off her assets in many ways, from sporting over the top get ups and an outspoken personality to working hard in school and actively participating in hextra curricular activities. The reason why she isn’t exhausted by all of this is because she’s always passionate about everything she does.
Her many talents and relatively obscure tale allow Sophinx to blend into many crowds. She’s a social butterfly, fluttering between groups while gathering intel. Sophinx is observant. Sometimes she even carries along a small notebook to put down her findings, which she openly admits to but only by saying it’s for general memos (and plant doodles).
Her illusion relies on the assumption that Sophinx leaves nothing to the imagination. Some fellow villains see this as either a lack of foresight or shallowness. Others think she’s trying too hard. Being sorely underestimated is exactly what she tries to achieve. If people think that’s all there is to her, they would not even consider figuring her out. Truth be told, they couldn’t be more wrong.
Sophinx commands attention. She intentionally plays up aspects of herself that benefit her public image to direct attentionaway from the ones that don’t. It’s not that she thinks these other interests are flaws that need to be suppressed but she feels they’d either make her persona less effective or she’d face judgement for them.
Sophinx is protective of her identity and fully controls how to present herself. She does not care to appeal to her peers or any standards but her own. Sophinx would go to great lengths to get what she wants.
Much like her hand, Sophinx's respect must be earned. By default, she adopts a neutral stance and would not act unless provoked. Sophinx does not see any benefit in bullying people and finds such acts of aggression beneath her. Most of her collaborations are for business reasons only and hence are temporary.
Sophinx is radiant. But just like radiation, something’s a bit off. Her deep red hair is tipped off with neon green, like the elusive green flash on a blood red sky at dawn. Her eyes are blue and pink, glowing like the flame of a Bunsen burner. If it weren’t for her rosy cheeks and eyelids, Sophinx would look as pale as death.
When Sophinx is embarrassed, her face blushes so much it slowly turns red as blood. This was a trait she inherited from her father. She’s a bit conscious about it since it ruins her cold calculating visage. She tries her best not to let it show, so instances of it are very rare.
Her face claim is actress Eleanor Tomlinson, best known for her role as Demelza in Poldark.
In public, Sophinx can never be caught dead with out the signet ring bearing her family’s seal. It’s not merely an accessory but a tool and a symbol of power. With a band made of braided human hair collected from one of her mother’s victims and her family’s royal seal carved into the head, it is best remembered as the culprit behind Sophinx’s firm and sometimes agonizing handshakes. Often the princess would apologize for the inconvenience. Nonetheless it was an intentional power move. She also uses the ring to seal letters and documents with wax. True to its purpose and its wearer, the ring leaves a lasting impression.
Swanphinx: Sophinx has reverse engineered a swan maiden cloak made with the feathers collected from Duchess Swan and her flock of backup swanmay dancers. An ability unique to the cloak, Sophinx can turn into a terrifying intermediate swan maiden form. While it has gone through many troubleshootings, using cloak still causes some side effects. Under its influence, Sophinx can only move in dance-like movements and she becomes noticeably more feral. Her voice also turns hoarse, just like a hissing swan. When she receives damage or other discomfort to her wings, the cloak amplifies the sensation, which can linger after taking the cloak off under the form of pseudo phantom limb syndrome where the wings were. Unsurprisingly, Sophinx can turn into a swan. A black-necked swan resultant of a strange compromise between the magic of Duchess’ white and black swan forms. Sophinx is nearly indistinguishable from a swan of this species if only the white markings on her head didn’t come in a subtle crown shape or her eyes wouldn’t still glow in excitement or panic. While in either her swan maiden or swan form, Sophinx can digest what normal swans can eat such as grass and water bugs. That doesn’t mean she likes the taste. Her guilty pleasure is terrorizing the students and the residents of Bookend while in swan form, since it allows her to sneak around more easily thanks to her small size. It’s mostly minor acts of theft and pranking. And lots and lots of HONKETY HONK HONK HONKING.
Interests and Hobbies
Remember kids, the only difference between screwing around and science is writing it down.
— Alex Jason
Anatomy: The year before Sophinx was set to attend Ever After High was when she was regularly taken by her mother Augustine to watch the kingdom's royal anatomists at work in hopes of desensitizing her to the bloodiness of the future executions. Add in a few trips to body farms, Sophinx has seen corpses in their most mutilated states. By the time she turned 17, Sophinx was given the chance to assist them in live dissections. It did not seem difficult for her since Sophinx was already good at using the scalpel on the frogs, rabbits and birds she was assigned with at school. Sophinx has a hobby of collecting anatomy-inspired items including the many miniature plastic anatomical models which she assembled herself and some glass coasters painted to look like they have organ slices inside, which she often serves drinks to guests with.
Art: realistic watercolor painting of plants and people, has a traveling sketchbook with portable paint palette
Dancing: She specializes in the waltz.
Horseback riding and polo:
Knitting and sewing: What’s a girl to do while she waits for heads to roll? Knit.
Preservation:taxidermy, diaphonization, shadow boxes, scrapbooking and bullet journaling.
Sophinx likes combining function with fashion. These interests arose from the need for storage of items and information.
Any princess born into a reputable family can relate to the sheer amount of love letters and flowers from hopeful suitors flooding their doors and mailboxes. Sophinx was no exception. She just has her own unique way of dealing with them. While many choose to ignore the cheesy letters altogether, Sophinx dissects them for information then recycles whatever materials are left. Once she's finished reading, Sophinx would collect the broken wax bits to reuse for her own seals and uses the paper for scrapbooking. There's a certain charm to emotionally handwritten texts that a commercially available calligraphy print could never hold a candle to. The flowers she receives are used as subjects for painting or pressed for scrapbook and shadowbox decoration.
If I want a man I'll have him. If he wants to tell he finds that he can't.
— Madame de Merteuil - Dangerous Liaisons
Sophinx holds disdain for the many Charming branches and other filler royal families, particularly their sons. In her eyes, they are no more than rabbits - breeding excessively, hogging resources and being all around invasive. What is more, they're glorified rodents whose faces are plastered on merchandise and are held up as symbols of goodness. Her feelings are mixed in regards to destiny-bound princes. On the one hand, they’d be expected to be exemplary members of society. On the other hand, these princes are likely trying to leach off the power of whatever royal family they marry into, which is a goal shared by their less fortunate leftover siblings.
She has more sympathy for Charming princesses who are most likely relegated to becoming political bargains and royal baby makers. Those with exceptional beauty have a chance to be immortalized as cover girls and in portraiture but most face the fact their existence will be lost to time.
Sophinx is aware that most of the princes vying for her attention were arranged to die at her hands by their parents who have grown frustrated with their spending habits and lack of talent compared to their destiny-bound siblings. If they couldn't be useful in life, Sophinx will put them to use in death.
Since the Legacy Day drama, there has been an influx of hopefuls to her door who hope that with destiny becoming more flexible than ever, Sophinx would be more willing to give them a chance. In reality, her stance has remained unchanged even after the destruction of the Storybook of Legends. It seems that Sophinx has been floating above the destiny conflict, unfazed by the fact she never signed the real book. She doesn't need the real deal, Sophinx only ever needed something she can convince others it is real. If she can't, Sophinx would just direct attention elsewhere.
Seeds have been sewn for a change of heart, but that doesn’t mean Sophinx is ready to change her mind.
Sophinx’s hair is based on a sunset and she wears a halo crown or hat because the princess’ beauty in the story is often compared to the sun. The spooky halo crown is also a nod to the princess still loved by her people despite her crimes. Her eyes are based on the flames of a bunsen burner because the princess was described to have fiery eyes.
Sophinx’s designs feature moths and tulips because the princess wore a mantle with butterflies sewn on. The princess and her riders were carrying tulips as they rode.
Sophinx does dressage. The princess makes her first appearance leading a group of riders. Rhiannon has the same color as the horse she was riding.
Sophinx is capable of turning into a black necked swan. At the end, the princess shortly turned into a black swan, then a white one with a black ring around its neck while John was trying to wash her in the magic bath.
She likes spending time with and has feelings for a non-human despite it all, similar to the princess and magician’s dynamic in the story.
Sophinx’s tendency to laugh it off when things don’t go her way is similar to the princess’ laugh towards the end of her last flight to the magician’s cave before collapsing.
Thaumar was assigned as Sophinx’s destined magician. He acts as her assistant when doing experiments. They’re lab partners in Science and Sorcery and help each other out with homework. She considers him her brother from another mother.
Rhiannon was cloned from her mother's most prized and loved white horse to ensure the same performance. Her mane is braided into lattices and she wears colorful hoof polish.
Sophinx summoned a frilled lizard in Animal Calling and gave her the name Bathory, after the blood countess.
Her hand in marriage is supposedly open for the taking. In reality, it is already planned that she would be assigned with a John who would be selected near the end of her executions to ensure his absolute cluelessness. Therefore, Sophinx’s doors to dating have remained shut. While she has admirers aplenty and continues to gain them through public appearances such as balls, parades and even school events, she has never accepted their advances or gone out with a single one. Sophinx gives vague responses to her potential suitors so as to draw them in while still keeping distance. She has no interest in breaking hearts since Sophinx does not want to create enemies.
Diaphonized rat jar lamps she and Thaumar made
Small scenes in bell jars that include small taxidermied animals (froggy went a courtin, who killed cock robin...)
Lots of plastic anatomical models she assembled herself
Has a full box set of Dr Gunther Von Hagens’ series
Small TV hidden under a painting
Shadow box furniture.
Cage doll jewelry holder.
Hanging mirror shaped like a guillotine blade.
Glass mannequin heads shaped like skulls to display her crowns.
Wooden bed carved to look like bones with pink glittery spiderweb curtains
Science and Sorcery
Grimmnastics: Sophinx is exempt from wearing only the school’s designated uniform since she also has flight practice wearing her swan cloak.
A single weak link can break the chain of a mighty dynasty. It’s my job to get rid of it.
Guess what this cup is made of? Ex-boyfriend material.
— Sophinx holding a bone china teacup. She’s kidding...isn’t she?
Like tulips, I break them and look good doing it.
— Sophinx in regards to her suitors
We do have records of participants throughout the years. We just can’t put a name to the face after so many years. Like anyone cared for them that long. The lucky few that were remembered we already sent them back home.
There are only two reasons a Charming would be here. Money or a role. Often both.
Charmings breed like rabbits. Cute and fluffy but wildly invasive.
I'd rather be a villain to the world than a traitor to my kingdom.
Death is inevitable. So the greatest lifetime achievement is to go out in peace knowing you’ve lived your best life and done the right things. Even better if you could leave behind a lasting legacy...If life is only a long walk to my grave, I'd rather be dancing.
We both know what’s the strongest piece on the board.
Since Sophinx is old enough, she has recently gotten the chance to enjoy her kingdom’s signature black aquavit, which she now considers her favorite drink when combined with black tea to make a black tea toddy.