In Speculative Fiction
, during a conflict or other key moments, a part of a person's Soul
or Power Source
is unintentionally transferred to another character via Applied Phlebotinum
. This process will often provide Party B with a fraction of Party A's powers, memories, and mannerisms.
Similar to, yet distinct from, a Soul Jar
. A relative of Personality Swap
and In the Blood
If the two characters are enemies, expect a Not So Different
speech at some point. May result in Synchronization
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Anime & Manga
- The clone Kikyo from Inuyasha owes her entire existence to a spell granting her a tiny fragment of the female lead's soul.
- The feathers in Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle are eventually revealed to be scattered soul fragments of the clone Sakura, and at least one was from Clone Syaoran.
- Let us just say "Season 4 of Yu-Gi-Oh! GX and leave it at that, please.
- Aizen designed White to perform target hollowfication of Soul Reapers. He was shocked, and delighted, when White ignored the Soul Reapers in favour of a nearby Quincy. Masaki killed White quickly, but not fast enough to stop herself from being bitten. Not only did Aizen accidentally infect Masaki with a piece of White but Ichigo, the first child Masaki had (five years later), was affected, too.
- Yhwach can spread pieces of his soul around anyone who comes into contact with him or with someone carrying a piece of soul. His soul pieces can cause miraculous healing in people with even incurable conditions and even restore missing limbs. Unfortunately, the price for the miracle is a vastly shortened life-span. What Yhwach giveth, he taketh away...
- In The New Universe comic Star Brand, anyone who has the Brand transferred to them or is healed by the current wielder of the Brand will eventually have it completely manifest in them.
- Fone Bone and Thorn have a piece of the Locust in them during their conflict in Bone.
- In Fantastic Four #51, "This Man, This Monster", a scientist uses a "duplication device" to physically model himself after Ben Grimm, but when he sacrifices himself to save Reed Richards, Reed speculates that he may have gotten some part of Ben Grimm other than his skin.
- Redlance and Nightfall join their souls together. This doesn't appear to have any outward effects (e.g., she doesn't gain his tree-shaping abilities) — they do it so they can never be parted even in death.
- Later in Elf Quest, Rayek absorbs Winnowill's soul. This has far less benign consequences because Winnowill is thoroughly deceiving and malicious, and Rayek has to constantly struggle to prevent her taking control of his body. And he doesn't always win.
- Rogue of the X-Men gets bits of people's memory and personality when she absorbs their powers.
- During the DC Comics storyline Our Worlds At War, Wonder Woman rallies the other Amazons and Darkseid in helping Superman push Warworld into a Boom Tube to the beginning of time. When it's all said and done, Wondy tells Darkseid that she infected him with a piece of her soul, forever a reminder that if he does something nice, it's because a piece of her was in him. Didn't last, obviously.
- Superior Spider-Man: Otto Octavius gains Peter Parker's memories and experiences through their "Freaky Friday" Flip.
- In the crossover fanfic My Little Denarians, Harry Dresden giving each of the Mane Six (technically Outsiders in this setting) a piece of his soul is what protects them from Discord's meddling with their show's script back on Earth by endowing them with human-style free will. (And earns Harry a "what were you thinking?" reaction from the Gatekeeper when the latter learns of it.)
- Agent Smith attributes a bit of Neo in him to his survival and powers in The Matrix sequels.
- The Steve Martin/Lilly Tomlin film All of Me.
- In Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan , Spock puts his mind into McCoy.
- Data loads part of himself into his B-4 counterpart in Star Trek: Nemesis.
- The Green Mile: John gives a "part of himself" to Paul.
- Exorcist II: The Heretic: Reagan has psychic powers as a result of her possession along with the spirit of Father Marrin.
- Lifeforce: The Space Vampire gave a part of herself to Carlson in order to understand humanity, resulting in a telepathic connection.
- Highlander: Endgame, after Duncan beheads Connor, he absorbs Connor's swordsmanship skills and perhaps a bit more judging my the morphing effect during the final fight were Connor's face is briefly seen over top of Duncan's.
- In A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master, Freddy Krueger manipulates Kristen into giving her powers (which allow her to pull others into her dreams) to her friend Alice as she dies. This allows Freddy to use Alice's dreams to stalk new victims (he could previously only get at the ones whose parents killed him), and he starts killing off all her friends. It takes Alice a while to realize it, but a small part of each victim stays with her; she starts talking and acting like her dead friends and even develops some of their skills. This grants her a level in badass.
You've got their powers, I've got their souls. Come on!
- Harry Potter has a number of Lord Voldemort's powers as a result of this. The reason for this is only explained much later: Harry became one of Voldemort's Horcruxes when Voldemort tried to kill him as a baby.
- The Lord of the Rings
- J.R.R. Tolkien's notes included the possibility that Morgoth had created the Balrogs and the Orcs out of the fragments of himself. There is some textual evidence for this. It is specifically noted that by the end of the war, Morgoth had become much weaker than he was initially- presumably due to spreading his soul too thin.
- Morgoth's right-hand-man and ultimate successor, Sauron, did split off part of himself to make the One Ring. This part of Sauron will attempt to overwrite the personality of anyone using the Ring- and eventually, anyone in the general vicinity.
- Lash in the Dresden Files is a copy of the fallen angel Lasciel, imprinted onto Harry's brain.
- In Mistborn, hemalurgic spikes can confer upon their recipient a variety of abilities stolen from the person they were killed with, along with a fragment of their soul. They also can damage the bearer's sanity and subject them to control or influence via allomancy or the powers of Ruin.
Live Action TV
- In Mage: The Awakening, mages can create physical objects which are fragments of their souls to gain certain powers. The major downside of this is the consequences should another mage manage to get a hold of your soul stone. Besides being able to drain your Mana, have a strong connection through which to do sympathetic magic, and a degree of access to your own powers, you become the other mage's "Thrall"; essentially, you gain a vague proclivity to performing any task you are set by the holder of your soul stone (although mage traditions hold that you have to give the soul stone back after getting three requests).
- Mage: The Ascension, ties all magic and the existence of "consensus reality" to the Avatar, a fragment of divine consciousness that exists in all humans. The "Sleepers" are mortals whose Avatars merely filter consensus through to define reality, whereas the mages have "Awakened" Avatars that allow them to twist reality to their liking. There are also a couple of merits (Twin Souls, Shattered Avatar) where your Avatar is part of a matched set.
- The titular Exalted receive their powers through a "third soul" that effectively grafts itself onto their consciousness. Solars, Lunars, Sidereals, Abyssals and Infernals all receive these shards, and usually experience memories from the lives of past shard bearers. Alchemicals have Exaltations made of refined souls that are "installed" with them at creation. The only exception are the Dragon-Blooded, who usually receive the Exaltation through familial lines.
- The Illithids, aka Mind Flayers, of Dungeons & Dragons. They reproduce by inserting an illithid "tadpole" into the ear of a sentient humanoid. The tadpole then consumes the brain, commandeers the nervous system, and converts the body into a new Mind Flayer. This isn't supposed to result in this trope, as the new creature retains no skills or memories from the old, but occasionally one will retain a habit from the host, like cracking its knuckles when nervous, or catch itself humming a tune the victim knew. Illithids try to hide this behavior, as one of their most legendary enemies was a human whose personality somehow survived assimilation completely intact and used their Psychic Powers against them, and they don't want to think it's possible for this to happen again.
- In The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Zelda transfers her magical powers to Midna at a particular point in the game, which at the end allows Ganon to possess her.
- Persona 3:
- When Chidori dies saving Junpei from certain death, he gets a small piece of her life-essence. In-game, this translates to an automatic ability that recovers a small amount of HP.
- And in a reverse instance: after spending ten years sealed inside the Main Character, the Appraiser of Death gained enough humanity to become sympathetic to their plight, giving them a choice about The End of the World as We Know It, and being rather benevolent and supportive for an Eldritch Abomination about to bring about death to them and everyone on the planet.
- In Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal, the main character is forced to give a piece of his/her soul to fellow bhaalspawn Sarevok in order to enlist his aid. Alternatively, Imoen can part with a piece of her soul in the main character's place, which, provided you bring both along, causes a later banter about if the soul piece has made Sarevok feel any different, to which he replies that he's gotten slightly more fond of the colour pink than he seems to remember being previously, as well as fretting about his weight and possibly having an acne breakout. He also gets her memories of her treatment back at Chateau Irenicus, which naturally don't bother him at all... but does spook her when he brings it up.
- The entire first half of Tales of Hearts is about what became of the various fragments of Kohak's soul. An astronomer absorbs her fear, causing him to fear that the moon is falling; an artist absorbs her doubt and thinks everyone is out to cheat her; a noblewoman absorbs her sadness and wants to commit suicide, etc.
- In City of Heroes: Warwolves, Galaxy troopers, and Void Hunters are made by implanting a Nictus fragment into the body of a human being. These fragments are the remains of a deceased Nictus and are shown to still have a life of their own.
- Dark Souls II gives a few subtle hints that link it to its predecessor, namely the presence of unique souls whose descriptions make a minimal reference to some of the first game's bosses, while also giving a few traits to the new bosses that can be attributed to the previous ones.
- The Lost Sinner drops the Old Witch's Soul on higher difficulties, which obviously belongs to the Witch of Izalith. Coincidentally, the former is imprisoned for trying to duplicate the First Flame (the gravest of the sins according to some), just like how the Witch got horribly punished for trying to recreate the First Age of Fire.
- The Rotten yields the Old Dead One Soul in New Game+, if only to reinforce the similarities between it and Gravelord Nito, who is also made from a pile of corpses and carries a sword the size of a car.
- Defeating the Old Iron King gives you the Old King's Soul, which can be traded for items that are related to Gwyn, Lord of Sunlight. Both are also fools who burned away when reaching into the flames.
- The Duke's Dear Freja carries the Old Paledrake Soul, a dead ringer for Seath the Scaleless. Fittingly enough, she's practically indulging in the latter's hatred of his dragon brethren, as evidenced by the dragon corpse hanging above the spider's lair.
- The crowner would have to be Queen Nashandra, who is stated to be the tiniest fragment of the first game's resident Eldritch Abomination and Omnicidal Maniac Manus, Father of the Abyss. Following in the latter's footsteps, she wishes to bring the world-consuming Dark to the kingdom of Drangleic, the implication of which was disastrous enough in the localized outbreak of Oolacile.
- In Crown of the Sunken King, Elana the Squalid Queen is implied to carry another fragment of Manus' soul, just like Nashandra. She similarly resides in a devastated kingdom, and gives off an air of degeneracy.
- Crown of the Old Iron King has Nadalia, the Bride of Ash. Like Nashandra and Elana before her, she too possesses a shard of Manus' soul, made even more explicit as Vendrick mentions the Father of the Abyss if you clear the DLC and visit him again. Unlike her "sisters", the poor thing stumbled upon a kingdom long abandoned, forcing her to give up her physical body and turn into black ashen fog, her essence animating various armours in order to defend her newly established home.
- Crown of the Ivory King has Alsanna, the Silent Oracle, who is the exception that proves the rule, instead. Like her sisters, she's a shard of Manus, namely, his fear. However, when the Ivory King gave her true love and compassion, he successfully allayed said fears and calmed Alsanna, shifting her loyalties towards the King instead of taking the same path as Nashandra did. Ultimately, Alsanna is the only thing holding back the flames of Lost Izalith, and her main concern after Mercy Killing the Burnt Ivory King is rescuing the souls trapped in the Old Chaos.
- TwoKinds: After Natani's soul was fragmented by an evil mage, a piece of his brother's soul was used to hold the remnants together. Because one of the missing soul-fragments was Natani's gender identity, "he" thinks of himself as male—and does his best to ensure everyone else does, too. Though more and more people seem to be finding out the secret.