GHOST RIDER & MORRIGAN AENSLAND
Main Media: Video Game, Fan Works
Shipping Type: Fanon
Dimension: Earth-30847 (Marvel vs Capcom Series)
Ship Name: None (Though I call dibs on “Blazing Bat”)
Primary Moments: Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite (Story Mode)
This first and likely one of the most cracked pairings that I like, this ship came about from the most recent addition to the Marvel vs Capcom franchise, Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite. While this game (currently) has the smallest roster of the series in more recent years due in no small part to the legal shenanigans involving copyright of the X-Men franchise, MvC: Infinite has one of the best story modes I’ve seen in a fighting game series that, quite literally, had next to no actual storyline to begin with.
As to where this ship of mine comes about in the game proper, well, that’s quite an interesting bit of story there. It’s a bit of a long story but the short of it is that Ultron of Marvel and Sigma of Capcom attained two of the six Infinity Stones, specifically Space and Reality, and used them to forcibly converge the two universes into one and in a way that no one expected. Case in point, the Dark Dimension of Marvel and the Makai Kingdom of Capcom both of which are, in essence, realms that only the darkest of entities can survive and thrive.
In the days since the convergence (roughly 90 days by this point in the story) Ghost Rider, the Spirit of Vengeance, has at last come close to finding the force responsible for the theft of a million innocent and forgotten souls in the mortal realm. His appearance in the Dark Kingdom immediately draws the attention of Morrigan, a succubus and an S-Ranked Darkstalker of incredible power.
Now, a brief pause here so I can make a few things clear. While Morrigan is undoubtedly portrayed as her canonical self, there is no official canon for the likes of Ghost Rider in this setting beyond the fact that he is undoubtedly in his first and most recognized host Johnathon Blaze and has all of the powers and abilities that incarnation has.
However, by way of dialogue by Ghost Rider himself, we can deduce that though his priorities might be slightly tweaked by the Spirit of Vengeance, it is still Johnathon Blaze that’s in control of the body and has, quite likely, not reverted back to his mortal form either by choice or because the Convergence has resulted in a more permanent fusion between the two.
Upon catching up to Ghost Rider, Morrigan asks him whether it is business that brings him to the Dark Kingdom or pleasure. He answers that it is vengeance and she surmises it’s a bit of both. When Ghost Rider tells her of the theft of a million souls, she asks him to do something that I would never have expected anyone, let alone a demon, to do.
She asks him to look into her eyes and tell her what he sees.
Now, for those who are unawares, Ghost Rider’s greatest power and most powerful ability is the “Penance Stare” wherein he stars into his victim’s eyes and straight into their soul before inflicting upon them each and every hurt they have ever inflicted upon every innocent soul they’ve marred all in a single instant. Most mundanes are left catatonic from this.
In one iteration of Ghost Rider, he used the Penance Stare to defeat Galactus the World Eater, a being who was made from the sole survivor of the universe existing before the Big Bang and whose conscious and body fused with that preexisting universe’s cosmic sentience.
That Morrigan, a far from innocent being, would ask this of Ghost Rider is… is nothing short of insane but what happens next just drives the crazy to new heights. Ghost Rider grabs her, via arm around the waist might I add, and looks into her soul and states that while she is guilty of many things, she is not guilty of the crime he seeks to avenge.
Morrigan meanwhile actually swoons and starts to caress his jaw stating what she sees in him is a desire, a fire, unlike anything she has ever seen in any other being. Ghost Rider declares it to be the desire for justice and retribution and Morrigan teasingly asks if there’s not even a spark of emotion for her or herself via duplication magic.
Caught literally between two succubi, Ghost Rider simple walks away towards where he feels the thief is, leading Morrigan to declare that if he will not give her what she needs, then she’ll have to take it from him.
Another pause here for a bit of background on Morrigan to those unawares. While it is a general trait among succubi that they absorb the life energies, or souls, of men via intimate relations, Morrigan is not so distinctly limited. Rather she is part of a unique… sub-species? Next step in evolution? Either or, what allows her to live, what is essential her bread and better, is not life force or even souls but rather a liquid in her own body that is secreted whenever she is physically or mentally stimulated.
However, Morrigan is not one to find such excitements so easily and, like others of her kind, utilizes the dreams of mortals which secretes a similar liquid in their brains and absorbs that in place of her own, leaving her victims feeling like their dreams had been taken away but are otherwise still alive if incapable of dreaming properly for extended periods of time.
Given her apparent anger at Ghost Rider, it was more likely that she was actually frustrated that her advances were being so readily ignored by someone who had ignited such a passionate spark in her that she hadn’t felt in ages past.
At the start of their battle, Ghost Rider proclaims he has no desire to destroy her and she in turns asks him to dance with her then, in flame and in fire. That alone was a major bomb of impossibility dropped by Ghost Rider who has been noted on several past occasions to strike down anything even remotely considered a sinner and as I’ve said, Morrigan is many things but an innocent soul she is not.
Their fight is eventually interrupted by the arrival of Dr. Strange, Dante, and Arthur, with the devil hunter himself threatening Morrigan with his guns if she doesn’t stand down. She pouts, freaking pouts and says that she and Ghost Rider were only playing. When Dr. Strange reveals that they are in the Dark Kingdom looking for the Soul Stone, Morrigan admits that it is Jedah who has it and that she can lead them to him as she and he are “close.”
This might have to do with the whole “Lilith” thing but that’s a whole other kettle of fish I’d rather not dive into. Needless to say, her small remark actually manages to get a spark of emotion in Ghost Rider as she teases him not to feel jealous of her connection to the Dark Messiah to which the Spirit of Vengeance, the Engine of Hell, actually turns away and huffs.
I just… how? How is it that two beings whom are far from the word adorable as Pluto is from the Sun managing to make each and every one of their interactions feel as such to me? By all rights, these two should not click so well together as they do and yet, out of the many match-ups I’ve seen in the Marvel vs Capcom series, be they simple team-ups to subliminal pairings (I’m looking at you Captain America and Chun-Li), Ghost Rider and Morrigan together just seems to work.
Morrigan is either outright immune to Ghost Rider’s stare, which is incredibly unlikely as even a cosmic entity has fallen victim to it, or is innocent enough as to not be affected by it at all. Highly unlikely but considering most, if not all, of her crimes are tied to her “feeding,” something she has no choice but to do lest she starve and eventually die, may grant her some leniency. She has outright said that Ghost Rider has a desire in him she has never felt in any other being and is enticed by it enough that she will, figuratively speaking, dance with him at risk of her own life to feel even a spark of that pure exhilaration he inspires in her.
Ghost Rider, for all that his a driven and nigh unstoppable force of vengeance, actually pauses in Morrigan’s presence and has shown not only an open unwillingness to kill her, a demon whom he would normally destroy outright without a second’s hesitation. He actually displays a sense of jealousy at the mere mention of her having been close with someone else.
Though he admits that he will not be seduced so easily thanks to the deal he struck, he doesn’t outright deny that he couldn’t be and given that for pretty much the rest of Infinite’s story, he sticks next to Morrigan and she to him, both eventually becoming Custodians to two of the Infinity Stones entrusted to the Dark Dimension and departing together at the end of the climatic battle.
It’s not a pairing that could ever be canonized outside the game and one that’ll likely not remain in the next one or in any possible future updates, but for all the insanity that it generates in my thought processes, it is one that I cannot help but enjoy.