"Hey, Rubedo! Be sure to breathe deep and inhale the particles that composed me!"This occurs when a character's sibling dies and the character absorbs their soul, or the dead may force their Life Energy on to their sibling. The rule of "two souls cannot control a body at the same time" usually applies and the siblings will switch control over the body. The original owner of the body is usually in charge, but the dead sibling will take control at key moments. Usually accompanied by friends of the 2-souled-twin saying he/she is Not Himself. In most cases when the inhabiting sibling is in control, a distinct feature will let the audience know. This can range from Mind-Control Eyes, to a colored aura that appears around the character, in some cases the voice will also change. Compare Body and Host, Jekyll & Hyde and Sharing a Body. Literal version of My Sibling Will Live Through Me.
—Albedo, Xenosaga II.
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Anime & Manga
- In Le Chevalier d'Eon, Lia forces her soul on to D'Eon so that she can take revenge on her murderers.
- Sia absorbed her twin sister Kikyou's soul.
- Nerine has a similar thing with Lycoris, although in this case it's "clone" rather than "sibling".
- In Chobits, Freya inhabits her sister Chi's body, sometimes taking control, but otherwise only observes and occasionally makes contact.
- Invoked by Hansel and Gretel in Black Lagoon. They're siblings, but who's the boy and who's the girl? Good question. They change around at will - and when one of 'em winds up dead, the survivor happily declares that they're still together, even as she changed into a he... (Note that all we see is a change of wig and voice - but it is implied that whatever physiological difference there may have been between them, is no longer visible without an autopsy.)
- Sakon and Ukon from Naruto.
- Fullmetal Alchemist: The "Slicer brothers" of the Fifth Laboratory, who are actually the disembodied souls of two serial killer brothers bound to a suit of armor.
- Hanako and the Terror of Allegory: Dead sibling Nozomi takes over Kaede's body as part of a revenge scheme.
- Psychic Academy had a pair like this, where the sister has her brother's heart. Comes as a surprise, because in the early part of the story it is the brother that is dominant (and The Antagonist).
- In Basilisk the Big Bad of the group apparently absorbed his twin brother. His brother is still alive, so to speak, as a monstrous symbiote who gives his brother immense regeneration in return for surviving freakishly. This also counts as squick, since said symbiote is only able to speak through his brother's ripped throat.
- This is the setup with Yayoi and Uzuki in Softenni. It helps that Yayoi comes from a family of spiritualists.
- In Persona -trinity soul-, the main character's brother had a twin sister that died when she was young. Her brain was transplanted into his. While he remains in control for the duration of the show, at the end of one episode, he turns into her.
- In Darker Than Black Hei's Contractor Power comes from his sister, who joined with him during the Heavens Gate Incident.
- Something similar to this happens in the anime ending of MÄR, only its between a clone and the original, not siblings. Also they each had half of the original soul, instead lof two souls. After she dies, Snow merges back into Koyuki so she can live on as one person to be with Ginta.
- This originally was the main plot of D.Gray-Man. In the pilot chapter Zone, Allen makes a deal with the Earl of Millennium in order to resurrect his dead sister Robin. But this was actually a trick, and it is revealed later that Allen's soul was taken by the Earl and that it is actually Robin living through Allen's body. Of course, this was changed a lot in the actual manga/anime and Allen doesn't even have a sister in D.Gray-Man.
- In RDG: Red Data Girl (based on a novel series), the Shouda triplets are a variant: Masumi died of a heart condition when he was six, but his remaining siblings, Mayura and Manatsu, can summon his spirit or even have him take one of their forms and impersonate them when they're off doing something else.
- This was the origin of Golden Age DC Comics superhero Captain Triumph. When Lance Gallant swore revenge for his brother Michael's death, Michael's ghost appeared to him, and by merging they gained superpowers.
- The Bronze Age Marvel Comics character 3-D Man was the soul(?) of a dead brother, brought back to life by the live brother when concentrating through his glasses.
- Marvel Comics' Brother Voodoo with Jericho (living) and Daniel (spirit) Drumm. Daniel could leave Jericho's body to possess other beings.
- Haunt is about a Badass Priest haunted by his brother, a deceased secret agent, becoming a superhero.
- Firestorm from DC Comics was this, before Doing In the Wizard and becoming a fire elemental.
- In one of the last issues of Paperinik New Adventures, One absorbed the last data of Two (who was about to be deleted). However, since there was so little of him left, One is always in control, and manages to become Odin Eidolon.
- One of the big twists in Avengers Arena was that the character of Apex has her own twin brother inhabiting her body. They were a set of twins that shared the same body until Apex took over.
- Children of Elm Street: A Nightmare Tale: As revealed in the third interlude, Shelby contains the soul of her deceased twin sister Tory, who was killed by Freddy when the two were six. While Tory's soul was initially absorbed by Freddu, when he attacked Shelby several years later, she fought back and entered Shelby's body, driving him off; ever since, the two have shared Shelby's body. While Shelby retains control most of the time, Tory takes control while they sleep.
- In the Disgaea Novels the twins Shas and Kira came to share Shas' body when Kira died shortly after being born.
- The plot of Haunted Sister by Lael Littke. Janine's twin Lenore died when they were young. After a near-death experience where Janine goes to heaven but is told it's not her time, Lenore's soul comes back with her. The two don't get along very well, and Lenore increasingly tries to take over more.
- Thad Beaumont/George Stark from Stephen King's The Dark Half. An odd example in that it starts with Thad putting his alter ego to rest. But then Stark gets a body of his own...
- In Distant Waves, Amelie and Emma, after Emma dies of hypothermia.
- In the Ixia and Sitia series, this happens to the Commander with his mother—she dies giving birth to him and her soul goes into his body, also changing his biological gender down below. The Commander usually is in charge of the body, but his mother acts as the Ixian ambassador when they are away from home.
- In The Thirteenth Tale, Vida Winter is a bit ambiguous about her identity after losing her sister.
- The Discworld novel Thief of Time has an interesting variant of this. Siblings Jeremy Clockson and Lobsang Ludd are not so much identical twins, as the same baby born twice owing to a literal hiccup in the flow of Time. They then receive foster upbringings and educations in circumstances and environments as completely opposite as it is possible to have - although both are intimately to do with Time. At the denouement of the story, the time glitch that created them is resolved and the two merge for the first time - although Jeremy's essence lives on as a secondary part of Lobsang.
- The Young Adult novel Dangerous Boy uses this as an update on The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, having Logan and Daemon be twins, one of whom died before the story started. Their switch is triggered by lightning.
Live Action TV
- In Heroes, Niki Sanders manifests the consciousness of her dead, older sister, Jessica Sanders, and gains super strength when she does so. Jessica died protecting her sister from their abusive father and continues to protect her, even if she uses violent and sociopathic means to do so. It was originally not clear whether this was actually two minds in the same body (though "Jessica" seems to think so) or just regular old Multiple Personality Disorder.
- It seems to be "normal" crazy, considering Niki was eventually able to use the powers "herself", and that she eventually manifested other personalities.
- The Outer Limits (1995) episode "Inner Child" explores this when a woman is attacked, wakes up in the hospital, and finds out that she had a twin that died and was absorbed into her body. The twin starts taking over (with the eye color changing to indicate who is in charge), but it's revealed she's not doing it to be malicious; the living twin simply can't remain dominant any longer. However, both twins are still alive by the end of the episode, though the dominant/recessive roles have switched.
- This was the basic premise, with a twist ending, of the short-lived NBC series Do No Harm.
- A variant occurs in Once Upon a Time, with Rumpelstiltskin absorbing his son, Baelfire/Neil, after Neil unknowingly used his own life force to fuel a spell to bring his father back from the dead.
- Warhammer has Vilitch the Curseling, who began life as a feeble and oppressed shaman's apprentice forever in the shadow of his brother Thomin. Vilitch's bitter prayers were answered by his patron god Tzeentch when he was magically fused to the shoulder of his hulking warrior-twin and able to take control of their conjoined body. Thomin is now a near-mindless thrall.
- In Sa Ga Frontier, Blue's quest involves gathering magical knowledge and killing his brother, Rouge in a Duel to the Death, to attain his true strength. Obvious spoilers are obvious, given the trope we're dealing on. In game, there are several opposing types of magic (such as light/dark and time/space, and the player can only obtain one of each set. Whatever Blue doesn't obtain, Rouge does. The winner of the battle to the death absorbs the loser's power and thus obtains every magic in the game.
- In Beyond: Two Souls, the ending reveals that Aiden, the entity that's been with Jodie and protected her for her entire life is the soul of her stillborn twin.
- In Inazuma Eleven 2, after Fubuki Atsuya dies in an avalanche, his brother Shirou develops Multiple Personality Disorder, with the second personality being Atsuya's. This is played as Dual Mode Unit in the game while in the anime adaptaion, the drama is expanded into Split-Personality Takeover.