|“||If this were hell, you would know it. Think of this as a waiting room. Lucky for you, I will be sending you back, but not before we discuss our partnership.||”|
Arcadius, better known as Cade, was a recurring character and an antagonist in the eighth season of The Vampire Diaries. He was the world's first psychic who in death came to be known as the Devil and creator of Hell.
Prior to 750 B.C.
Arcadius was born in a village situated on an island in the Mediterranean. He was gifted with the ability to see into the minds of others as the world's very first psychic. He used his powers to empathize and help others which made his fellow villagers love him. However, when he used his powers to peer into a man's mind and saw his "impure" thoughts for a young woman in the village, he approached the man with an offer to help quell his "urges" using his gift. The man, however, was mortified and furious so instead he turned the villagers against Arcadius. Together with a mob of villagers, the man captured Arcadius and burnt him at the stake. In his final moments as he was set ablaze, Arcadius felt anguish and betrayal over being murdered by the very people he helped and let out a psychic blast that was so powerful that it created it's very own dimension which would come to be known as Hell. Arcadius' soul resided in this new world of his and from then on he collected the souls of the wicked dead and feasted on them.
After 750 B.C.
After his death, other people born with the same gift as him were persecuted and exiled to the same island he once inhabited and left to die. At some point two psychics named Sybil and Seline lived on the island and unbeknownst to Sybil, Seline was tricking her into luring men to the shores with their powers, not for their cargo but to cannibalize their bodies. When Sybil tried to commit suicide after learning of Seline's lies and their cannibalism Arcadius approached them. He offered them eternal life provided that they feast on the flesh of mortals for eternity while he harvests the souls of their victims. Seline agreed on both of their behalves and the Sirens were born.
Throughout The Vampire Diaries Series
In An Eternity of Misery, Sybil reveals her backstory to Stefan while implying that this is what Arcadius wishes for her to do. She also reveals Cade's name and origins to Stefan. Through her flashbacks, Sybil informs Stefan that Cade was the world's first psychic. He was a kind man who used his powers to help his fellow villagers until one turned on him in fear, and rallied the village against him to burn him at the stake. In his dying moments, his anger at their betrayal caused him to unleash a psychic blast that created a new dimension that Cade's spirit controlled, a place that would be called Hell, where Cade punished the souls of the people who betrayed him as well as the souls of wicked people for eternity. Elsewhere as a bedtime story to Lizzie and Josie Saltzman, Seline tells them the story of Arcadius. He also called forth Georgie's soul to hell when she was killed by Seline.
In Detoured On Some Random Backwoods Path to Hell, Cade is summoned by Seline in an attempt to bargain for her and Sybil's freedom. She offers the twin siphon girls Lizzie and Josie Saltzman as replacements for the Sirens. Cade tells Sybil he is intrigued by the offer before Sybil makes a counteroffer. Sybil offers Cade the Salvatore brothers as the willing replacements for the Sirens as they are powerful vampires with bloody histories. Damon masterminded the deal and convinced Stefan to accept in order to spare Caroline and Alaric's twin girls. Sybil reveals she secretly altered the deal so Cade allowed her to still be an immortal Siren, but is no longer bound for Hell, while Seline must still go to Hell as revenge for leaving Sybil in the Vault centuries ago. Cade accepted Sybil's deal and granted Stefan a day left of freedom before his deal activates.
In Nostalgia's a Bitch, Sybil and Seline are sitting in a diner arguing and trying to make amends, moments later Cade walks in and expresses his disappointment over their constant bickering. They are shocked to see him and Cade reveals that the bell rang enough to give him an appearance on earth. The Sirens attempt to convince Cade they could manage to work together, but Cade declines their offer and killed both sisters who are then consumed by hellfire.
In What Are You?,
In It's Been a Hell of a Ride, Cade greets Damon in the crypt in which contains Elena's coffin. He tells Damon that he's in limbo – neither dead nor alive but somewhere in between. Cade offers to return Damon to his body if he delivers the bone dagger to Cade. Damon refuses and Cade replies that he has a way to change Damon's mind.
Stefan and Damon are meeting Cade outside a waterfall and lake. They argue and Stefan plunges a syringe full of vervain into Damon, effectively stopping Damon. Stefan enters the cave behind the waterfall and sees Elena's coffin. Cade taunts Stefan by saying that he will not be able to kill Cade, even with the bone dagger. At exactly 8:00, Alaric begins to ring the bell while Stefan attempts to kill Cade. Cade overpowers him when the bell stops ringing (as Alaric took a phone call from Josie and Lizzie), and Damon enters the cave just then.
Cade offers Damon a deal: Cade will only take one soul – either Elena or Stefan. Damon must choose which person to save. With Elena's coffin on fire and Stefan on the ground bleeding and in great pain, Damon chooses himself to save both Stefan and Elena. Cade tells Damon that he [Damon] must die for Cade to take his soul. After Cade stops the fire around Elena's coffin, Damon stabs himself with a wooden stake.
In the in-between world, Cade looks for Damon calling that it is useless to hide. Damon's soul belongs to Cade. He finds Damon and psychically pulls Damon toward him, only to be stopped by Bonnie. As Bonnie has the same psychic power as Cade, she says she will fight for Damon. Bonnie is losing and Stefan plunges the bone dagger into Cade's chest, destroying Cade. Cade explodes and ash falls.
It is assumed that destroying Cade also destroys Hell, as it is Cade's psychic world.
Initially, Arcadius was shown to be a nice, decent and sociable person. He smiled and walked among the villagers as one of them. He was fair and good-tempered. He also was a wise counselor who tried to use his psychic powers, specifically mind reading, to help people control their urges and tempt their impure desires until he was unjustly punished by his neighbors. As he took his last breaths, his outlook changed and he decided to make them all suffer for what they did to him.
Embittered by his death, Cade became more quiet and subdued in his dealings with others, no longer showing empathy. Now he had no qualms about tormenting others no matter how small or insignificant their "sin" was, even if such a deed was an accident. Cade was not reluctant to turn innocent children into the Siren's replacements.
Cade lacks any of his original optimism and faith in humanity. Due to his death at the hands of his own people, his personality changed and now he delights in human suffering. He tells Stefan that he wanted him as a servant ever since the Monterrey incident because he considers it a masterpiece. Cade doesn't just seek to punish and feed off the wicked but actively wants to corrupt those who would otherwise lead a decent and moral life. In his eyes, anyone who can be made wicked is already wicked and to this end, he enjoys tempting them from their moral path. In this regard, he lives up to his given nickname of "the Devil" which in some versions, is depicted as either a tempter and/or a fallen angel seeking to corrupt mankind.
Arcadius was of African descent, as well as being a built muscular man, he was about 6'6" tall and appears to be in his early thirties. He had a full lower lip, dark brown eyes, wide cheekbones, and dark skin color.
Powers and Abilities
Arcadius possessed all the standard powers and abilities of a human/psychic, but at the moment of his death he had awakened a rare ability to create another dimension with a powerful psychic blast. An ability so unique that no other being with psychic powers has ever matched until Bonnie Bennett created her own psychic dimension at the moment of Enzo's death.
Seline claims that Arcadius was the first psychic, born with the ability to look into the minds of others. This gift gave him great empathy towards others but would eventually cost him his life.
In his final moments, he came to know true evil of men and upon his dying breath created an entire dimension with a psychic blast, an extreme display of power that altered the very cycle of life and death; this dimension was called Hell.
As a spirit, Arcadius resided within and ruled his own afterlife dimension. He was capable of calling forth evil souls and could even deny them entry into the Other Side, forcing them into Hell, forever punished for their wicked deeds no matter how small. Since he was called 'The Devil', it is unlikely that he had ultimate control over the souls that passed over into the Afterlife (those that found peace), however the means of this have not been established. Seemingly, he also had the ability to release souls from Hell, upon his own volition, specifically those that had escaped via the Founder's Bell.
He could inhabit the limbo between the afterlife to communicate with those temporarily stuck in limbo. With a body of water, human sacrifice and fire, he could be psychically summoned to the world of the living as an apparition. Even after his resurrection, he retained the ability to inhabit limbo via his psychic abilities.
Some time after his death, he was able to appear before Seline in a moment of her need and made a deal with her. He granted immortality, youth and beauty to her and Sybil, creating the first Sirens, in return for the souls of humanity's worst. The only stipulation was for them to feast on human flesh in order to maintain their forms. He later extended the same gift of immortality to both Stefan and Damon Salvatore. However, in both cases, his subjects would still physically die, giving them the opportunity to converse with one another. Once finished, he was able to send them back, giving them their lives back.
Cade took advantage of the ringing of the Mystic Falls Founders Bell. Cade was able to "pay a visit on Earth" since it was only rung 11 times (1 time shy of unleashing hellfire) but sufficient enough to make cracks between the two planes of existence. Since he was dead and a spirit within his own dimension, it is currently unknown exactly how he was able to become 'flesh' as other escaped spirits were still tied to hell.
When he returned he was shown to have retained his psychic powers and his control over other spirits within Hell. In addition, he could control his own Hellfire, as his dimension was the psychic imprint of his own death. Upon his "resurrection", he was, seemingly, functionally immortal as he showed Damon that he was physically unfazed by fire or Hellfire and could rip out his own heart, while still functioning properly. Whether this was a physical manifestation or a psychic illusion remains to be seen.
Arcadius had the typical weaknesses of a human/psychic while he was still mortal.
As a Spirit, he was still bound to the afterlife and could not physically interact with the physical plane.
After being resurrected from Hell, he achieved a form of immortality and could not be killed by conventional means. He could only be killed if stabbed by a weapon made from his bones. It has been suggested that the Cure could turn him mortal and susceptible to typical weaknesses of a normal human, although it was never put into practice.
- Gone Girl (Unseen Phenomena)
- An Eternity of Misery (Flashback)
- Coming Home Was a Mistake (Mentioned)
- Detoured On Some Random Backwoods Path to Hell (First Modern Day Appearance)
- The Next Time I Hurt Somebody, It Could Be You
- We Have History Together (Mentioned)
- The Simple Intimacy of the Near Touch (Mentioned)
- Nostalgia's a Bitch
- You Made a Choice to Be Good
- What Are You?
- The Lies Will Catch Up To You
- It's Been a Hell of a Ride (Death)
- I Was Feeling Epic (Mentioned)
- Arcadius is the latinized form of "Arkadios". It derives from an ancient Greek name meaning "of Arcadia". Arcadia was a region in Greece, its name deriving from "arktos" meaning "bear". This was the name of a 3rd-century saint and martyr.
- Cade, in this case, derives from the name "Arcadius". Standing alone, it comes from a Welsh origin and is a diminutive form of Cadell. It means "small battle; spirit of the battle".
- He is the oldest known character in both TVD and TO universe.
- Cade shares some similarities to Qetsiyah:
- They both were some of the most powerful people of their respective species (psychic and witch, respectively).
- They both created a new race of supernatural species.
- They both created dimensions of suffering based on desires of revenge. Cade saw the true evil within the villagers that burned him alive while Qetsiyah sought to punish Silas for his betrayal.
- They both bestowed immortality upon great supernatural beings; Cade on two psychics (created Sirens) and Qetsiyah on a traveler witch (created Immortals).
- Cade can bestow powers on those that enter into a pact with him, such as making psychics into Sirens, and making normal vampires like the Salvatore brothers immortal. However, his immortality seems only to be the ability to send a soul back to their body after they are killed.
- Cade can also revoke the powers he grants to who he sees fit, as he used his powers to burn the two sirens, Sybil and Seline to death with no effort. He granted them their immortality, and proved that he could easily take their lives when he wanted to.