Honorary True Companion
A character who isn't part of the central cast but is still treated as a True Companion by them.
This character is on good terms with most, if not all, of the True Companions of the series. They will fight alongside them, shed blood and tears, and join in the celebrations. With their close-knit relationship with the main cast, you would expect that it would be a no-brainer for them to join them in a heartbeat. Alas, their alliance is always only temporary and once the goal is completed they're off on their merry way. Unlike the Sixth Ranger, when presented with an opportunity to join the squad on a permanent basis, the Honorary True Companion is always prevented from joining due to some force of nature. Either they are "needed elsewhere" and other times they just politely refuse. Just the same, the series will leave it with the offer to join still being on the table for team. Despite never officially becoming a member of the team, they will remain the groups closest ally, being the first to respond in the need of help. And the rest of the team always leave the offer on the table if they ever change their mind. Compare to the Sixth Ranger, 11th-Hour Ranger, and Guest-Star Party Member. Contrast with Sixth Ranger Traitor. Sometimes may also be Remember the New Guy.
Will go under Friendship Tropes and The Index Team.
Examples:Anime and Manga
- Vivi of One Piece travels alongside the Straw Hats for close to 3 arcs, but never officially joins the crew. It was teased in her final arc that she would join, and was even offered to by Luffy, but she reluctantly turned down his request. Despite this, she is considered one of the Nakama, arguably having the closest bond with the crew of all of the Supporting Cast.
- Sylphiel from Slayers. She is a good friend of the main cast, is remembered or missed by the heroes rather often, and even shown in the opening credits alongside the main four, but actually joins the party only for several episodes per season, then is Put on a Bus again.
- Sieghart in Rave Master, started out as an enemy, but then switched sides to the good guys. Despite this, he never actually joined the main gang and preferred to do his own stuff.
- Spider-Man shared this dynamic with the Fantastic Four for years. He initially tried to join the team in his early years as a Superhero but was rejected. Despite this he maintained a close bond with the group, particularly Johnny Storm. When Johnny was seemingly killed, Spider-Man was their first choice for a replacement to fill the void.
- In the Teen Titans Very Special Comic Book dealing with teen drug use Robin is replaced by The Protector, who is well known to the other Titans and they are implied to have had adventures together before this. He even orders them about like he's in charge even though he's explicitly a friend of the Titans and not a Titan himself. He is Robin with the serial numbers filed off because the comic book was produced by Keebler, and Nabisco owned the Robin cookie license.
- In Baptism of Fire, Geralt's hanse meets up and travels with Zoltan Chivay's gang for a while, with both groups starting to see each other as True Companions, but never actually merging into one (they go separate ways at the end of the book, but their friendship persists well into the later novels). Considering how Geralt is the only one alive of his group when he meets Chivay again, he is the Honorary True Companion to Chivay's gang.
- In Noob, the eponymous guild never left the Ragtag Bunch of Misfits stage, but frequently gets help from Golgotha, who's a mercenary and can't formally join any guild because of that (as it's against rules). She's however a childhood friend to Gaea, gets along with the other members with the guild and is frequently the one who decides to join the group, even if they can't afford to pay her. DVD covers and official photomontages meant to show the entire Noob guild frequently include Golgotha.
- Maj. Dr. Janet Fraiser, the CMO of Stargate Command in Stargate SG-1 was effectively a series regular (despite never appearing in the titles) and was treated this way, particularly by Sam who was apparently her best friend. Which made her sudden death by a stray staff blast in "Heroes" all the more of a Tear Jerker.
- Ric Flair was never officially a member of D-Generation X, but he was The Mentor of Shawn Michaels and Triple H, so he still maintained a close relationship with them, and anyone hurting him was their personal Berserk Button.
- Carmelita Fox in Sly Cooper has several Enemy Mine teamups with the title character throughout the series, but it's not until the fourth game that she actually teams up with the Cooper Gang develops a bond with them. Murray's drawing makes it known that he considers her part of the gang.
- Invoked in Disgaea 2: Cursed Memories. After clearing a Bonus Boss fight with the Sentai parody Prism Rangers, Adell will be granted the title of Prism Black. Rozalin complains why she don't get to be Prism Pink.
- In the Mass Effect series:
- Urdnot Wrex is the only one of the first game's squad mates who appears in both sequels but never rejoins the Normandy crew (except temporarily in the "Citadel" DLC of Mass Effect 3).
- All survivors of the Suicide Mission in ME2 who don't rejoin you in part three (conditionally: Grunt, Jack, Jacob, Kasumi, Legion, Miranda, Mordin, Samara, Thane, Zaeed) are treated as True Companions when you meet them.
- Lastly, Admiral Anderson, Shepard's CO and the first captain of the Normandy, is included on the Normandy memorial wall right next to Shepard's own name in the Extended Cut.
- Flash the Wonder Dog was awarded Honorary Membership in Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers for thwarting Fat Cat's attempt to replace Flash on his television show. In return, Flash made Chip and Dale Honorary Wonder Dogs.
- In Young Justice, this was Red Arrow's role in the first season. Despite the fact that he could've been a founding member of the team, he refused to join because he only thought the Justice League was worthy of his talents. Still being close friends with the other founders he relied on them, backed them up, and threatened people on their behalf.
Will go under Friendship Tropes and The Index Team.
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