|Other names||Knight of the Sword|
General of the Raging Fire
Lightning 02 (RF6 callsign)
|Age||uncertain, but at least several centuries|
|Date of birth||Ancient Belkan Era|
|Affiliation||Air Force 1039 (pre-StrikerS)|
Capital Air Force (pre-StrikerS)
Riot Force 6 (StrikerS)
Special Duty Section 6 (Force)
|Rank||2nd Air Captain (StrikerS)|
1st Air Captain (ViVid)
|Occupation||Capital Air Force 14th-Team Subcommander (pre-StrikerS)|
|Qualification||Commander of Company (pre-StrikerS)|
|Partner||Agito (Assistant, post-StrikerS)|
Reinforce II (TSAB registered, pre-StrikerS)
Agito (StrikerS ep.25+)
|Japanese name||シグナム |
|First app.||A's manga (prologue)|
|Voiced by||Kaori Shimizu (Japanese)|
Bailey Chadwick (English)
Signum (シグナム Shigunamu), voiced by Kaori Shimizu (Japanese) and Bailey Chadwick (English), is a character introduced in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's. Signum is the leader of the Wolkenritter (German: "Cloud Knights"), a creation of the Book of Darkness. She is generally seen as the cold one, but Shamal has said that Signum's heart has warmed since they met their mistress Hayate Yagami. Signum's Armed Device is a sword called Laevatein, and as a magical creation, she has no familiar.
Signum is named for the Opel Signum, much like characters of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha are named for cars, and her device appears to be named after the mythical sword Laevateinn. Like all Wolkenritter, she doesn't have a surname.
Additionally, she has two titles from her Wolkenritter past: "Knight of the Sword" (剣の騎士 Ken no Kishi), referring to Laevatein, and "General of the Raging Fire" (烈火の将 Rekka no Shō), referring to her flame-type Mana Conversion Affinity and her leadership role among the Wolkenritter.
Like all the Wolkenritter, Signum is many centuries old, but as a magical construct she doesn't appear to age. In A's, she is depicted as approximately 19 years old, which would make her 25 in A's epilogue and 29 in StrikerS, had her appearance aged accordingly.
Signum's physical appearance, manners and fighting style are styled after Lamia Loveless and her mecha Angelg, as one of the many shout-outs to the Super Robot Wars series in the Nanoha franchise. Most notably, they share the same voice, being both played by Kaori Shimizu.
Signum also bears some resemblance to Archangel Michael, an important figure in the Abrahamic religions. Michael is the general of God's army, wields a flaming sword, and is generally associated with fire element. Similarly, Signum is the leader of the Wolkenritter, wields Laevatein, and has a flame-type Mana Conversion Affinity. Also, though wings are not part of the original portrayal of angels, Signum manifests two pairs of flaming wings when in Unison with Agito.
Signum has a taciturn and businesslike personality, contrasted by the more empathetic Shamal and the brash Vita. In A's, she carries out what she believes to be her duty (collecting pages of the Book of Darkness to save her master Hayate's life), even if it means dishonoring herself (by lying to Hayate and later, fighting and hurting a child, Fate). On the other hand, after the incident is resolved, she shows willingness to atone for her crimes and foresight not to have aggravated her and other Wolkenritter's case by unnecessary cruelty. Her speech is antiquated and and occasionally very formal, including keigo expressions.
Although she appears cold and collected at all times, this facade gives way to a gentler personality when she is with Hayate and the rest of their "family". By the time of StrikerS, she has similarly warmed up to her ex-rival Fate, and the close partnership with Agito later that season seems to have generally loosened her up a little, as seen in Force.
Signum enters the story when Vita has attempted to steal Nanoha Takamachi's Linker Core for the Book of Darkness. Since the arrival of Nanoha's cavalry, Fate Testarossa and Yūno Scrya, Vita is cornered and Signum must come to her rescue with Shamal. The Wolkenritter overpower the TSAB troupe with their use of high-powered magical cartridges, and Signum manages to snap Fate's staff, Bardiche, in half. The battle ends with Shamal finally managing to get Nanoha's Linker Core and Nanoha breaking Vita's barrier. Signum refuses to take a bath that night for fear of Hayate seeing the injuries sustained in her battle with Fate.
Signum may appear emotionless, but she is completely dedicated to Hayate, and as the leader of the Wolkenritter, fights for the others as well. The Wolkenritter attack mages to steal their Linker Cores, their sources of magic, to fill the 666 pages of the Book of Darkness with this power before it saps any more of Hayate's and she becomes fully paralyzed. They continue to obtain Linker Cores and fight off interference from the Time-Space Administration Bureau (TSAB), mainly Fate (with whom Signum faces off during every battle, and whose strength she respects) and Nanoha, while they try to keep Hayate from knowing that they are stealing magic for pages; she has told them that as long as she is mistress of the Book, she will not allow anyone to be harmed over it.
Signum, determined to save Hayate even if it means going against her wishes, convinces the other Wolkenritter to fill up the Book of Darkness anyway. What the Wolkenritter don't know about Hayate is that the Book, once completed, may stop sapping her Linker Core for pages, but that does not mean that it will stop hurting her or undo its damage. In fact, the master of the Book dies upon its completion. Signum continues to masquerade as a distant relative of Hayate's while covering up their deeds. Shamal notes that Signum used to be completely emotionless, and ordered the other Wolkenritter to act as such in accordance with their purpose, but once Hayate came along and treated them like family, Signum began to smile.
Just before the Book of Darkness is completed, Suzuka Tsukimura brings Hayate some friends in the hospital as the Wolkenritter are there... Nanoha and Fate. The warring groups recognize each other and their shared wish at once, and meet on the roof of the hospital. Nanoha and Fate try to tell the Wolkenritter about what will happen to Hayate, but their confrontation is cut short by both the interference of two masked men and the completion of the Book of Darkness with the Linker Cores of the Wolkenritter themselves. All that is left of Signum is her winter coat.
Aria and Lotte Liese, who turn out to be the masked "men", frame Nanoha and Fate for the death of Signum and the others. Hayate screams in horror for all of this to stop and is taken over by the will of the Book of Darkness, becoming the fearsome possessed woman inside of it just as the real duo escapes their prison. Meanwhile, Signum's spirit is trapped inside the Book of Darkness with the others. When Hayate rejects her own wish of vengeance, she reprograms the entire Book, but a virus still remains inside, the one that caused the evil aspect of the Book in the first place. Hayate awakens the spirits of Signum and her friends inside the book of Darkness, and she decides to join the fight against the automated defence program that Hayate describes as "the 'darkness' in the Book of Darkness." Signum uses the most cartridges that she has ever used at one time in the series when she turns Laevatein into a longbow to attack the rogue program; for all her practicality and frugality, she knows that saving Hayate is the ultimate goal. In the end, Reinforce releases all the Wolkenritter in physical forms at the cost of her own existence.
In Sound Stage 03, Nanoha mentions that the Wolkenritter always immobilized their targets and rendered them unconscious before stealing their Linker Cores and asks Signum whether this was to prevent any chance of serious injuries (since Linker Cores themselves can regenerate, but other organs can be damaged during their extraction). Signum affirms this and admits that the four of them planned to surrender to the TSAB all along, had they been able to complete the Book and survive its activation (the chances of which were slim, as she also admits), therefore they have taken precautions to not worsen their criminal record any more than necessary, hoping to get a lighter sentence and spend more time with Hayate.
In an epilogue-taking place six years later, Signum is a 25 years old, and still lives with the other Wolkenritter and Hayate, posing as a Hayate's mother.
In the mangaEdit
Two official manga series expand on what happens to the characters between A's and the sequel, StrikerS.
In the epilogue issue of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's THE COMICS, stated as being five months after the conclusion of the A's anime, the Wolkenritter are shown as being officers of the Armed Corps, assigned to the Special Investigations Assistance Department.
The Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS THE COMICS series occurs six years after the events of A's and four years before the events of the StrikerS anime series. In it, the Wolkenritter have been reassigned to different departments within the TSAB, and work together only on special occasions; Signum is now an officer with the Mid-Childa Army, Vita and Shamal have been posted to the Central Office, and Zafira acts as bodyguard for both Hayate and Shamal. They still live together with Hayate, and are planning on moving their residence from Earth to Mid-Childa.
Four years after the epilogue of A's, Signum becomes the sub-commander of Forward Lightning of Riot Force 6, working under Fate, who works under Hayate. Unlike Vita she does not participate in training the recruits, claiming that she is an old-fashioned knight and all she can teach them is how to get close to their enemies and rip them apart. However, near the end half of the series, she accepts the request of Erio Mondial to spar with him.
During the attack of the Saint's Cradle, Signum fights the knight Zest Grangeitz, who is in unison with Agito. She performs unison with Reinforce Zwei, but only manages to end the fight with a draw. The fight continues inside the headquarters of Capital City Defense Forces, and Signum came out victorious. In his dying breath, Zest asks her to take care of Agito and Lutecia Alpine.
From the flashback of Miura Rinaldi, it is also revealed that Signum has been teaching her for certain battle techniques, e.g. slashing adopted as kicks.
Signum appears in the prologue chapter of Magical Record Lyrical Nanoha Force, now partnered with Agito. She makes her first proper appearance in chapter 3, when she and Agito investigate the ruins of the installation destroyed by Thoma Avenir and Lily-Strosek on Ruwella. Both are revealed to be in pursuit of the "Hückebein", as well as the EC Divider and the Reactor (implied to be Lily). After Agito reports their findings to Teana, Signum comments that she feels uneasy, as if before a major battle. She is last seen receiving the news of the fight between Thoma and Veyron and heads there, expressing hope that there were no casualties.
She and Agito appear again in chapter 5, finally discovering Thoma and Lily just in time to save them from Cypha of Hückebein. After restraining Cypha with a bind spell, she orders all three of them to freeze and drop their weapons, introducing herself as a member of Special Duty Section 6 of TSAB. The charges for their arrest are "possession of dangerous goods and committing acts of violence". When Cypha disregards the orders and breaks the bind, Signum warns her that if she resists, she will cut her down, regardless of who she is. After Cypha ignores the warning (as well as a second one), Signum loads a cartridge into Laevatein and attacks her in the air.
Despite Cypha's complacency, Signum proves more than a match for her, briefly transforming Laevatein into Schlangenform and wounding her in the face. At this moment, Agito, who has completed the analysis of Cypha's field effects, enters Unison with Signum. Before they attack, however, Signum questions Cypha whether her katana is a Divider and whether she is a member of Hückebein. When Cypha confirms both, Signum asks whether she remembers destroying a pioneer settlement on Uninhabited World #14 three months earlier and killing 67 civilians and 12 TSAB officers, which Cypha nonchalantly confirms, as well. Signum, greatly distraught, questions why they did it, but Cypha merely says that "the need arose" and admits being among the killers that time. Immediately thereafter, Signum attacks again and knocks her into the ground, completely severing her right arm. This, however, also considerably damages Laevatein.
However, Cypha quickly regenerates her arm and rises into the air again. Signum recognizes her as someone in the mid-stages of infection by the Eclipse. She and Agito then prepare to capture her, and Agito informs Signum that she only has to maintain physical contact with Cypha for 0.2 seconds for the capture system to completely restrict her. At this moment, however, Cypha fully activates her Divider, transforming it into two large swords and dares Signum to attack. Unfazed, Signum prepares for another battle, igniting Laevatein once again.
Thoma stands up, having completely lost the sense of self, and summons the second, more powerful form of his Barrier Jacket and Divider. Cypha asks her whether he will find a place in Signum's world or the Bureau will kill him. Instead of replying, Signum orders Agito to unison out and take care of Thoma, while she herself attempts to restrain Cypha. She fires a multi-projectile shooting spell to distract her but Cypha blocks it easily with her Divider. Signum then attempts to cut her down with Laevatein, but Cypha blocks it with her elbow. The toughness of her Eclipse-augmented body is so great that Laevatein shatters near the hilt. In the next moment, Cypha slashes Signum twice across the chest. Agito attempts to help but is stopped by a long range bombardment spell. Bidding Signum farewell, Cypha pins Signum to the ground with her sword through the stomach. As she pulls the sword out, she comments that Signum's death shall be a warning to all those who pursue Hückebein.
Chapter 8 reveals that Signum and Agito are still alive when the Bureau's medics get to them, despite sustaining severe injuries and losing consciousness. Signum is shown rushed away to the hospital with an oxygen mask on her face.
Signum finally wakes up in a hospital ward in chapter 18, with Agito, Reinforce Zwei and Hayate at her side. At chapter 20, she expresses regret for not being able to save Thoma and asks for a sparring match. Knowing that she will have to fight Cypha without magic, only with dodging and parrying, she limits herself to her sword skills in the sparring, while Agito takes care of her other powers. The match ends in a draw, although it is noted that the injury may possibly have permanent damage on Signum's body.
In chapter 23, Signum finally returns to combat duty with her new AEC Equipment, Gladiator, and confronts Cypha who is engaged in a three-way battle between the SDS6 and the Grendel family. This battle ends in her favor, as Cypha once again loses her arm and is forced to flee.
Signum is a skilled aerial mage and a telepath like all other Belkan magic system practitioners. She has exceptional swordsmanship and is able to use her device, Laevatein, very efficiently. She also seems to be proficient with breaking binds.
Signum is one of the most powerful mages of the Bureau, having fought Nanona to a draw at least twice and repeatedly faced off against Fate during the Book of Darkness incident. Canonically, Signum has never decisively lost a battle until her defeat at the hands of Cypha of Hückebein in Force.
Signum's battle costume is comprised of a battle dress designed for mobility, and armor plates. Although it is only referred to as "Armor" in the series, it functions similarly to the Barrier Jacket of the Mid-Childa magic system. Although Hayate discouraged her and the other Wolkenritter from fighting, she co-designed each of their Knight Clothings.
|Dimensional Transfer||Ancient Belka|
|Fire Dragon Flash||Ancient Belka||Attack||Bombardment|
|Flying Dragon Flash||Ancient Belka||Attack||Magic-enhanced attack|
|Luminous Dragon||Ancient Belka||Attack||Magic-enhanced attack|
|Purple Lightning Flash||Ancient Belka|
|Schlangebeißen||Ancient Belka||Attack||Magic-enhanced attack|
|Sky Fang||Ancient Belka|
In the gamesEdit
|Spells in The Battle of Aces|
|Cross Range||Long Range||Long Range (Charged)|
|▢||Attack/Basic||[unnamed]||Sky Fang||Sky-piercing Fang|
|△||Block/High||Purple Lightning Flash Whisper||Flying Dragon Flash|
|Spells in The Gears of Destiny|
|Cross Range||Long Range||Long Range (Charged)|
|▢||Attack/Basic||[unnamed]||Sky Fang||Sky-piercing Fang|
|△||Block/High||[unnamed sheath attack]||Flying Dragon Flash|
|△△||EX Attack||Luminous Dragon||---|
- ^ Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid, chapter 19.5 (ex).
- ^ Mage ranks in StrikerS on the Japanese Nanoha wiki.
- ^ Chadwick, Bailey. Personal Conversation at Anime Expo 2008. 5 July, 2008.
- ^ Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's Sound Stage 03, track 18.
- ^ Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's THE COMICS, chapter 7 ("Epilogue of Aces").
- ^ Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS THE COMICS, chapter 1, page 5.
- ^ Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS THE COMICS, chapter 3, ending part.
- ^ Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's, episode 2, bind breaking spell.
- ^ Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS The Comics, chapter 10, page 19.
- ^ Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS The Comics, chapter 15, page 30.