|Rank:||2 (Former), 3 (Former)|
|Fate / Status:||Deserted/Alive|
|Background / Alliance Information|
|Affiliation:||The Organization (Former)|
|Jap. Voice:||Minami Takayama|
|En. Voice:||Wendy Powell|
Irene (Official: "Ilena", イレーネ) was Claymore No. 2 of Teresa's generation. Irene was demoted to No. 3, after Priscilla was promoted in her place. Irene is known for her high-speed sword technique, giving her the nickname "Quicksword Irene" (高速剣のイレーネ, Kōsokuken no Irēne). After Teresa's death and Priscilla's Awakening, she faked her own death and deserted the Organization. She emerged from hiding to help Clare. Her death is implied but never confirmed. Rafaela, the enforcer sent to kill her, told her that "for deserting the Organization, your life is forfeit.". However, it is later revealed that Irene survived as she welcomes Clare and Raki into her home.
"Irene" is a transliteration of the Japanese "Irēne" (イレーネ, pronounced "ee-leh-neh").
"Irene" is a feminine proper name, from the French Irène, from the Latin Irene, from the Greek Εἰρήνη, meaning "peace," perhaps alluding to her calm attitude or the fact that she withdrew herself from battle for a long period of time.
"Irene" is also a name of a goddess of peace, of early Christian saints, and of an 8th-century Byzantine empress.
The other version of the character name, "Ilena," may be a variant of "Ileana," a princess in Romanian folklore, who was rescued by a knight from a monster. "Ileana" itself is a variant of "Helen."
Irene had long, pale hair (In the anime, it was silver. She had the same hair as Galatea and Audrey, who were No. 3 in their respective generations), an aquiline nose, and elf-like ears (similar to those of Cassandra, Ophelia or Queenie). She had silver eyes, as with all Claymores, and wore the standard uniform. She often wore a calm expression on her face.
After DesertionEditBy this time, Irene's hair had grown quite long (In the anime, it had grown to her knees.) and had only her right arm (until she gives it to Clare). She wore a dark leather outfit and a lighter-colored, ragged cloak.
- Height: 180 cm (5 ft 10.86 in)—same height as Teresa
Irene was a calm, calculating, and intelligent Claymore. She was an excellent strategist. This was perfect for one who wielded the Quicksword technique, which requires the user to have absolute control over his/her emotions and to suppress them to the point of non-existence. As a result, Irene seemed cold and emotionless, but only outwardly, as she later admitted to Clare that she envied Teresa for having found someone to love and be loved by. Her mentor had instructed that she suppress her emotions when training the advanced sword style. She also displayed a fear of dying by deserting the Organization after losing her arm to Priscilla. However, she was not afraid to sacrifice herself and was a survivor, as shown when she gave her remaining arm to Clare, stating that she did not have as much use for it as Clare certainly would. She was also willing to accept her execution at the hands of Rafaela for her desertion.
Irene's trademark technique is a sword-swinging ability so fast that it is impossible to follow with the unaided eye. This is done by channeling all of one's Yoki into one arm, essentially Awakening that arm while preventing the rest of the body from doing so. It is dangerous to use, as the natural instinct is to release Yoki throughout the body, and requires extreme concentration at all times to control the Awakened arm while fighting. Irene's calm and composed personality was key in her success; she could perform this technique so well that she never showed any signs of fatigue or bodily strain, and so quickly that enemies wouldn't even see her draw her sword. This skill though similar to the Windcutter requires a massive yoki release, being capable of higher damage but less accuracy.
Acute Yoki Sensing and SuppressionEdit
Irene showed skill in sensing Yoki when she identified Priscilla's state of Yoki release, and, in order to stay in hiding, she displayed a talent of suppressing her own Yoki over prolonged periods of time. She tracked down Clare, having sensed a "familiar" Yoki within her (that being Teresa's flesh and blood within Clare).
From Claymore Databook 1.
- Yoki: A
- Agility: A
- Muscular Strength: B
- Spirit: A+
- Perception: B
- Leadership: A
As a testament to her power, Irene very swiftly and easily defeated Ophelia, with the Quicksword, despite being in hiding for a long period.
Employment as a ClaymoreEdit
Irene's story before becoming a Claymore is unknown. She was ranked No. 2 during Teresa's time but was demoted to No. 3 upon Priscilla's promotion. She was well-known for her Quicksword technique. She was apparently acquainted with Teresa , Sophia, and Noel during her employment.
Battle with TeresaEditAfter being demoted to No.3, Irene was summoned to a Yoma hive to rally with Noel, Sophia, and Priscilla. Their mission was to eliminate Teresa. She seemed to be the only one who was informed of the mission and was given the duty of passing on the information to the others. Sometime before she joined Noel and Sophia, she had seen Priscilla fight. According to her, she accepted Priscilla's high ranking despite the lack of experience immediately and that she shook with fear at the sight of the younger warrior in combat. She was the first to realize Priscilla's exceptional loathing for Yoma, as well as a younger warrior's potential to surpass Teresa - She appeared to be mistaken. Irene added that she would have refused to fight Teresa no matter how large the group was but changed her mind when she saw what Priscilla could do.
When the group found Teresa, she entered the building first and performed her Quicksword, which Teresa easily blocked. Irene was shocked, but continued to attack. Teresa commented that Irene's Quicksword had improved, but still not sufficientlyWhen Priscilla engaged in single combat with Teresa, she stayed in the sidelines, explaining to Noel why Teresa was known as "Teresa of the Faint Smile" and why Priscilla, who fought with her Yoki completely suppressed, was the best opponent for Teresa. Irene was the first to identify that it was time to intervene when Teresa was beginning to gain the upper hand. She rallied the other three, stifling Priscilla's desire to fight Teresa one-on-one. Even with her Yoki released, Irene could not defeat Teresa. In fact, she was the first to be wounded out of the four. The other three succumbed shortly after, with Teresa not even releasing any of her Yoki. Irene was distraught at the group's defeat, realizing she had underestimated Teresa yet again with the presumption that her, Sophia and Noel backing up Priscilla would even remotely keep up with Teresa.  When Teresa spared Priscilla, she was shocked, knowing that the old Teresa would not have hesitated to kill the younger warrior. When Teresa left, she tried to gather the group for another assault but Priscilla's Yoki ran wild. In a maddened state and despite Irene's efforts, Priscilla pursued Teresa alone. By the time Irene, Sophia and Noel had reached the battlefield, Teresa had released her Yoki and Priscilla was close to passing her limit. Irene identified Priscilla's condition of Yoki release and was again astonished by Teresa's strength.
When Priscilla killed Teresa and Awakened, Irene was the first to attack, but lost her left arm the second they clashed. Within moments, Sophia and Noel fell to the Awakened Being. Afterwards, Priscilla attacked Irene, critically injuring her.
Irene regained consciousness some time after Priscilla and Clare had left the site. Knowing she would be no use to the Organization with one arm and fearing death (be it from the Organization or Priscilla herself, if she returned), she deserted to a far-off valley surrounded by mountains, suppressing her Yoki so it was invisible. There she remained for years until her Yoki aura had almost vanished, living a simple life away from wars, abandoning the use of her sword.
While battling Ophelia, Clare unknowingly approached Irene's hiding place. She felt that Clare's aura was almost identical to Teresa's, though Irene did not identify her until she found the pair. Ophelia turned her sword on Irene for interrupting her "fun," but Irene easily blocked her sword with the Quicksword. Even Ophelia's Rippling Sword was no match for it. She easily incapacitated Ophelia and took in Clare after the latter lost consciousness. Irene forcefully persuaded Clare to stay instead of recklessly going after Ophelia. Afterwards, she questioned Clare about her motives for becoming a warrior, trying to dissuade her from hunting Priscilla. However, when Clare told her that was impossible, Irene decided to teach Clare the Quicksword.It became clear to Irene that Clare could never truly master the Quicksword since she was not made for it and commenting that Clare appears to have a raging fire inside of her while the Quicksword required absolute control and absence of emotions. However, she continued to teach her for a day. That night, she gave Clare her old Claymore uniform and talked about Teresa. She told Clare that Teresa's death had been because of her unlocking the love in Teresa's heart. She, then, encouraged Clare to live on, since she was the only proof Teresa existed. The next day, she completed her Quicksword lessons with Clare and, as a parting gift, gave Clare her remaining arm. She insisted Clare kept it, saying that she did not need it when Clare certainly did.
After Clare left, a helpless Irene was confronted by Rafaela. She never showed regret for her decision to use her Quicksword, a technique that would release her Yoki and make her detectable, or for her decision to give her arm to Clare. At roughly the same time as Rafaela and Irene's exchange, while Clare was leaving Irene's dwelling, she noted that her arm throbbed, impyling that Rafaela attacked Irene.
True to this uncertainty, Irene is later revealed to have survived her confrontation, reappearing once more at the end of the manga. Having finally defeated Priscilla once and for all and settled her own personal demons, Clare returned to Irene's home with Raki in tow. As they walked, she spoke of Irene to Raki, partially drawing upon the memories she had recieved from Rafaela. She remarked that the "strike was sure," but that Irene was "stubborn," and was, after all, the sole survivor of Priscilla's first massacre (implying that Rafaela had not intentionally allowed Irene to live, who survived that "sure" strike and fooled her aggressor).
Thus, she wished to return to Irene, and give back the arm she had lent her. However, upon seeing that Irene had seemingly regenerated her lost arm, a bemused Clare notes that this may no longer be necessary. Nonetheless, she could still regale her former mentor of all that had happened these past 7 years. As Clare and Raki approach, Irene recognizes her familiar youki, which causes her to smile. She notes that it has become quite calm.
Teresa, Noel, and SophiaEdit
The four seemed to know each other. Either from training or from early work is unclear, but Teresa had seen Irene's Quicksword before. Irene seems to have high respect for Teresa when Irene was speaking to Claire during their training. She has told Claire to "Live on, as she's proof that Teresa has ever existed." Sophia commented that she had not seen Irene in a long time. At the finale of Awakened Teresa's battle against Priscilla, Teresa notes that Irene's right arm alone is different from her awakened form, and she thanks Irene for supporting Clare the whole time.
From the moment Irene saw her, she held Priscilla as an object of fear. However, she could have a hold over her with her leader-like attitude. The fear of Priscilla had invoked in her had apparently "still not left her" despite her prolonged time in hiding.
Irene identified her yoki as similar to Teresa's and felt compelled to save her. After that, she realized that she was the girl that was with Teresa and willingly trained her to become stronger. She desired for Clare to continue living, as she was "the only proof Teresa ever existed."
Irene noted that she would not be able to defeat the new number 5 as if she knew she was the old number 2. This might be noted false because Irene then asked why Rafaela had that scar on her face.
Behind the ScenesEdit
- Irene's Japanese voice actress is Minami Takayama, and her English voice actress is Wendy Powell.
- Irene has a song on the Claymore Intimate Persona CD called "Shippu." This can either mean "suppress" or "hurricane;" both meanings appropriate for Irene.
- In the VIZ Manga translation and English dub of the anime, Irene is known as "Ilena" (not to be confused with "Elena").
- Irene's Japanese voice actress Minami Takayama and her English voice actress Wendy Powell also voiced Envy in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood and Mukuro in Yu Yu Hakusho.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Claymore Manga Scene 38
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Claymore Manga Scene 18
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Claymore Manga Scene 37
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Claymore Manga Scene 23
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 Claymore Manga Scene 36
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Claymore Manga Scene 19
- ↑ Claymore Manga Scene 20
- ↑ Claymore Manga Scene 21
- ↑ Claymore Manga Scene 22
- ↑ Claymore Manga Scene 24
- ↑ Claymore Manga Last Scene