A succubus (plural – succubi) is a species of demon representing the sin of Lust, using their seduction tactics to lure their prey into a false sense of security before killing them. Their male counterpart is the incubus.

Succubi appear prominently in Soul Embrace, with one being protagonist Delilah.

APPEARANCE

Succubi by default take alluring female forms, though most physical traits vary from specimen to specimen. Shared traits include a pair of bat-like wings and horns that vary in both shape and size. They possess the ability to hide these features, however, and otherwise resemble any ordinary human with only their otherworldly allure making them stand out.

ABILITIES

A succubus can get a lot done with her looks alone, her beauty often being enough to make men and women alike helpless before her. Should this tactic fail, many succubi are capable of hypnosis by means of staring directly into their victim’s eyes for a few moments, becoming more potent the more weak-willed the victim is. Flight comes naturally to succubi, and while in the air, they demonstrate impressive bouts of speed, though their combat efficiency (like their hypnotic potential) varies. Many can however become exceptionally vicious when provoked, and any human without prior combat experience certainly won’t escape them without injury

Without a doubt, their most outstanding skill is entering the dreams of their intended victims. Most require minimum physical contact in order to do so, though some exceptional skilled ones (namely Lilith) are capable of this feat from any distance so long as they have the right amount of focus. Once within their victim’s dream, they can manipulate it however they choose and will usually do so with the intent of making themselves more desirable to their victim (i.e. conjuring a nightmare and treating their embrace as something of a safe haven).

LIST OF KNOWN SUCCUBI/INCUBI

Delilah

Soul Embrace‘s main female protagonist. Naive and far more good-willed than her creators would have liked, she grows feeling toward series protagonist Nobuyuki Honda and forms a Soul Embrace with him to help fend off the encroaching demonic forces.

Lilith

The original succubus. She makes a brief appearance in Part I: The Fires Rise, though those who bore witness to her doubt they’ve seen the last of her. She is very lustful and surprisingly motherly despite her great power, but she is also very possessive and doesn’t seem to take “no” for an answer.

Alexandria

A succubus that renounced her sinful ways shortly after she was summoned to Earth by a boy seeking to use her for vengeance. She is very musically inclined and prefers to go by the name “Alice”. Her current location isn’t known, but it’s rumored she currently plays lead guitar for an up-and-coming American rock band.

Alastor

An incubus and a minor antagonist making his appearance in Part III: Hollows of the DamnedHe is very full of himself and has the tendency to mock his opponents and attempt to mentally torment them, often leading to his own humiliation when his prey strikes back in a way he wasn’t expecting.

SUCCUBI IN MYTHOLOGY/SCIENTIFIC EXPLANATION

Fritz Schwimbeck’s My Dream, My Bad Dream (1915), depicting a succubus-like creature preying on a sleeping man

Succubi made prominent appearances in folklore as far back as the Middle Ages, with the term originating from the late 14th century and derived from the Latin word succuba, meaning “to lie beneath”. Like in Soul Embrace, they were depicted as demonic or otherwise supernatural beings that took the forms of beautiful women to have sexual intercourse with human men, and it was said that to do so would lead to the deterioration of one’s health and eventually death.

Most prominent among these mythical succubi is Lilith, depicted in Jewish folklore as Adam’s first wife who refused to be subservient to him and eventually abandoned the Garden of Eden. From there, she and three others mated with the archangel Samael and bred a larger demonic race.

The presence of succubi was in pre-modern days used as an explanation for sleep paralysis, a state between sleep and wakefulness in which the mind will make up but the body remains dormant. A person in sleep paralysis thus cannot move and will often experience intense feelings of fear as well as visual and auditory hallucinations.

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