|| Tropes ||
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Former soldier in the Amestrian military and escaped experiment from the 5th Laboratory, Dolcetto now resides in Dublith, working for the homunculus Greed in an underground bar known as The Devil’s Nest. More than grateful to have been given a second chance at life, Dolcetto tries to have an optimistic view on his new lifestyle and body. And despite the hardships that being dead to his family—and the world—brings, he continues to live his life with purpose.
|| Don’t Wake Me ||
Since he wasn’t born colorblind—it was a side effect of bonding with the dogs—Dol still has memories of color. Though, his conscious memories have faded and desaturated over the years due to lack of exposure to color. He can’t remember a lot of ‘in between’ colors or extremely specific ones (i.e. when imagining a sunset, he might picture a blob of red, a blob of orange and a blob of white instead of a gradient-like image). Most of the time, he dreams in grayscale, too.
But every once in awhile in his sleep, his subconscious kicks in, and the memories will come flooding back. These dreams are usually his favorite and take him back to Yuflam where his family is, full in color along with the trees and sky and the farm and Ol’ Lou. Sometimes Martel and Roa are there, both vibrant like he used to see them. Sometimes Genevieve is there, too. …but…
He still only sees her in grayscale. He doesn’t have any memories of her in color.
|| I have a name, you know ||
While ‘dog’ related names and jokes around the Nest don’t throw him into low-level rage so much anymore—they sure as hell used to—, he is still frequently irritated by them even if he doesn’t really show it. The other chimera around the Nest—as well as Greed—are the only people he’ll tolerate them from. If you’ve somehow learned he’s part dog and you’re not someone he considers family and you tease him about it, you’re going to piss him off. However, he hates being spoken to like a dog (“say, Fido, go fetch me a drink”, “heel, boy”, ”Good dog-boy! Remind me to give you a treat later”, etc), it doesn’t matter who’s saying it.
As previously mentioned, he won’t deny that he’s part dog and he’s grateful to still be alive despite the heavy cost and finds as many ways as possible to be optimistic about his new body… but… he doesn’t like ‘the dog’ being his identity.
He wants to be ‘Dolcetto’ again. Not Subject 156. Not ’the dog’. Dolcetto.
|| First Weeks ||
Dolcetto’s first several weeks (pressing months) free from the Labs are… not some that he likes to talk or think about. This was a time when his temper was at its shortest, and he still carried violent habits and dangerous reflexes he had developed over the fourteen years spent there. Readjusting to ‘normal’ living and ‘normal’ interactions with humans was extremely difficult for him. Not that it was made easy, either.
After several… accidents during a few bar fights, as well as going as far as nearly cutting Vulch open in an argument, Greed had to keep him in more secluded areas of the bar during crowded nights and often threatened to kick him out if he didn’t get his act together and stop scaring off customers. The homunculus wasn’t exactly that stellar at understanding psychological damage didn’t heal at the same rate the physical damage did.
Roa, Martel and Doc kept a close eye on him and were often the first to step in if it seemed he was getting close to lashing out, either in what he thought was defense or because his temper was shot. He’s gotten much better at controlling his temper and holding himself back from immediate reactions (though if you push him enough he will follow through with whatever threats he makes…no matter how sadistic).
|| Other Senses ||
When trying to find or identify someone, Dol has almost completely fallen out of the habit of asking “what did/do they look like?” This is because most people rely on hair/skin/eye/clothing color when identifying one another. Such information is, 9 times out of 10, completely useless to him.
Instead, he’ll ask if the person was wearing anything unusual or noticeable, how they were behaving or what they smelled/sounded/felt like, depending on who he’s talking to.
If he’s talking to someone who is unaware of his eyes or the fact that he’s a chimera, such as a stranger or maybe a customer in the bar, he’ll maybe ask about stand-out articles of clothing, any jewelry or watches, types of shoes, facial structure, if they were exhibiting distinguishable behaviors or if they heard the person’s voice. Due to how awkward or specific or weird these questions can sometimes sound, he tries to avoid resorting to this and—if working with another chimera—will allow them to ask most of the questions.
If he’s talking to one of the other chimera in the bar, then he’ll ask about the previously mentioned, plus if they managed to get even the faintest grasp of their scent. If he has anything to go off of or base the smell around (like, salty or ‘like bread’ or ‘lots of perfume’, etc), it’s a good enough starting point.
And depending on the chimera, he’ll ask what the air around the person felt like. Some chimeras’ sixth sense is stronger than others, and the usefulness of the description can vary greatly.
Dolcetto doesn’t rely much on his eyes when seeking someone out or recognizing someone later on. He’s much more heavily reliant on his other senses. And while that can be a disadvantage when communicating to others, it definitely comes in handy when enemies expect and prepare for him to only exercise use of his vision.
Anonymous:Dolcetto, we have seen that you retained memories from when you were just human, before the chimera thing happened? Did you retain memories from your dog half?
“If I do, that’d explain some of the weird-ass dreams I have from time t’time. …so. I guess I do. They’re just… not as strong. …tucked away, maybe.”
…it’d explain why I recognize some smells I know I’ve personally never come across, too…
|| ‘Master’ ||
Dolcetto never uses the term ‘master’ when speaking to Greed. He prefers to address Greed as ‘boss’; during more laid back moments—or times when his temper has snapped—he’ll call him by his name.
The term ‘master’ is only used when he is speaking to someone else and referring to Greed. It’s a way of establishing to others that he considers Greed higher in rank than himself and, therefore, the well-being or needs of the homunculus are considered more important than his own.
It would also only be used in more dire situations, not simply because Greed might want a job ran at 4 in the morning, when the chimera would rather be sleeping.
Anonymous:Can you eat chocolate? Or will it kill you like it does to dogs?
“I can eat chocolate in small quantities. Not really a problem.”
“Avocado, grapes an’ macadamia nuts? Different fuckin’ story.”
|| Strength Complex ||
In order to make it easier to maintain control over the experiments in the 5th Laboratory, the majority of the chimera were probably kept just nourished enough to be on the cusp of being healthy. Just enough food and water a day. Just enough of the necessary vitamins so they’d be in well enough condition for experimentation. Etc, etc.
Though, with the more difficult to control experiments or ones who might be put into ‘hibernation’ (left completely alone for several months, possibly years at a time before being used again), they might allow to become underweight. Dolcetto was probably one of these since he had a temper and gradually began to develop more violent defensive habits under various conditions. And in several instances, his unwillingness to cooperate almost got him marked as a failure, so he might not have been on the priority list of ‘keeping close to healthy’.
During the 14 years in the Labs, he went from being a fairly well built soldier to much more on the scrawny side. The shirt he wears now used to hang off of him quite a bit, but over the past four or five years, he’s gained his muscle back and more.
Dolcetto has a series of very disciplined work out routines that he rotates through during the course of the week, always in the early mornings before the majority of the Nest is up. And he’ll normally make up for late night/early morning collisions with a nap in the afternoon before business hours. He tends to get more crabby than usual if for whatever reason he’s prevented from his morning routine or from his nap. And while he’s not picky or ‘strict’ about his diet—because he knows their options are generally very limited—he’ll generally try to take the healthiest route possible (cobbler being an exception when it’s available).
His physical strength and ability is very important to him for a number of reasons and he doesn’t like being out-muscled or out-ran. He needs to be capable—and for others to be aware that he’s capable—of protecting his family.
He can’t fail them again.
Branching off Jess’ headcanon about post traumatic war syndrome.
I also don’t think Dol would suffer from it, due to the Labs. Had he NOT been shot/taken to the Labs/etc, and he HAD survived and continued to fight through the war to the end of it, I could see him possibly suffering through it, buuut as we know that’s not the case. I don’t think they were in Ishval for all that long (maybe not even a year) before they wound up in the Labs, which took up a whopping 14 years of their lives, living in the dark, seeing horrible things that the soldiers in the war would see or imagine, and being human experiments.
So, violent shooting or war related games probably wouldn’t have much effect on him (though, they wouldn’t be his first choice, either, I see him liking games like the Zelda or Portal series that’s more focused on puzzle solving, exploring and thinking instead of mindless shooting).
But, as Jess said, games that involve psychological horror crap or almost-human-but-not monsters or hospital/asylum settings or things trying to eat him would really not sit well with him. He wouldn’t even be able to get past the opening cutscene for Silent Hill: Homecoming. It would hit way, way too close to home.