Etched in Stone - Zelgadis Greywords

Zelgadis Greywords

Zelgadis Greywords is one of Lina Inverse's companions in the Slayers TV series. He is a chimera, being 1/3 human, 1/3 demon, and 1/3 golem. He is also pretty much every fangirl's dream (well....quite a number of them anyway).

Standard Notes: This is my opinion of this character. Very little of this is fact; this is my analysis of Zelgadis Greywords based on what I have seen of him, which, at this time, is all of Slayers TV (First Season), All of NEXT, and the beginning of TRY. I have done quite a bit of Internet research though, so my knowledge base is a bit wider than that.

Zelgadis Greywords is somewhere around 17 or 18 when we first meet him, and he's a villain then, or rather, an antagonist. He's an OPPONENT. Granted, he knocks Lina around quite a bit, but he obviously felt bad about it. (Dub quote, look out) "If you'd just handed over the statue quietly I...wouldn't have had to do that."

What everyone sees of Zelgadis depends on how close he lets them, and he doesn't let many people close. To most of the world, he's no different from his skin: cold, hard, abrasive. But underneath that, he's insecure. He hides himself from the rest of the world because he's convinced that he is freakish and hideous to behold (ask us drooling Zel fans; we think differently....).

At the same time, he's very driven. He wants to find the cure for his "affliction." Said affliction is the result of Rezo's spell on him, which was a result of Zelgadis's own thirst for power. He craved power...NOW. Instant gratification...with nasty side effects. Zelgadis is smart enough to know that the magical powers he has will leave him whenever he finds his "cure." The fact that he searches for it anyway says that he may have learned his lesson. He values being human, being who and what he really is, over having power.

However....he's gotten very used to that power. He's flattered (in NEXT) at the term "heartless, magic-using swordsman." Keep in mind that Zel, no matter how mature he acts, is still an insecure teenager. He probably thinks it sounds cool. He's nigh indestructible (we've seen both Lina AND Amelia bleeding as though they were a wellspring of the stuff, but I've never seen Zelgadis get overly-bloodied. Smashed up, yes, but bloody, no); outside of magic, the only thing that can do him real damage is the Hikari no Ken (a rose by any other name....*cough* ANYWAY....)

Zel is sort of Second-in-Command of the Slayers group, no matter what relationship may exist between Lina and Gourry. Zel is very intelligent as well, and also well-studied (all the research he's done to try to find his cure). He's also cooler and calmer than Lina is (which isn't to say he doesn't have his own temper).

And like Lina, he's very protective of his friends. Because of his own low self-esteem (which goes far above and beyond Lina's), he treasures Lina, Gourry, and Amelia's friendship. They are the few who can see past his physical form and like him for HIMSELF. Granted, they're loud, obnoxious, and at times more than a little greedy; they're immature and crass. But they're his FRIENDS. He has no one else.

Besides mere friendship is the camaraderie of the battlefield joining them all together. Zelgadis has helped Lina and Gourry defeat Shabranigdo...he's helped them, with Amelia and Sylphielle, beat Copy Rezo. Lina and the others have brought him into the line of fire...but they've also helped him out the other side. He cares deeply about all of them.

But, like Lina, he would never let that show usually. He's supposed to be cool, distant, mature, above all of that. Zelgadis is used to wearing masks, playing roles....this isn't that great a stretch for him.

I honestly believe that if Zelgadis really had to choose between his cure and his friends' lives, he would choose his friends. It's a sign of his growth as a character: maturation and growing acceptance of who he is NOW, instead of clinging to who he was THEN.

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