Croire de Cayenne (クロワール・ド・カイ工ン公爵), commonly referred to as Duke Cayenne (カイエン公爵), is a high-ranking noble in Erebonia. He was the leading member of the Four Great Houses and ruler of the Lamarre Province. After his attempted coup d'etat in S.1204 during the October Campaign, he was sentenced to lifelong imprisonment.
Croire is a middled aged man with bright orange hair of medium length and emerald eyes. He wears his hair in an unkempt style and also has a narrow moustache and short beard.
Croire dresses extremely flamboyantly, wearing a long purple long coat which is both trimmed in both and black as well as frilled. he has a frilled cravat, green waistcoat, white gloves and pinstriped trousers with are tucked into knee-length riding boots. Croire has a very pronounced frilled purple cape which he wears around his shoulder where a mass of dark violet feathers can be found. A silver pin with three blue feathers can be seen on his lapel.
Duke Cayenne is a true aristocrat. He loves extravagance and flashy clothes, but hates the idea of commoners getting into positions of power which is why he hates the Reformists. He also acts condescending towards others.
“A man's worth is decided not by himself, but by those he rubs elbows with.”
— Duke Cayenne, Trails of Cold Steel, Chapter 5.
Cayenne also thinks that people should bow to him because of his noble lineage. He feels that his family has been robbed because of what happened to his ancestor Orthros Reise Arnor during the War of the Lions. His main goal in seeking the Divine Knight Testa-Rossa is to reclaim Erebonia and return it to the days when nobles ruled and commoners lived to serve the nobles.
He is also not a fighter and prefers to make others do the work for him. He carries an immense hatred for Giliath Osborne who he sees as being an obstacle.
Duke Cayenne is a noble whose lineage extends back to the days of the War of the Lions. Due to being a member of one of the Four Great Houses in Erebonia, he controls the province of Lamarre and all of its resources. He is also the ruler of the Port City of Ordis.
Croire was a member of House Cayenne, one of the Four Great Houses of Erebonia. He took the position of acting duke after his brother Alfred de Cayenne had died in a maritime accident and sent his niece, Musse Egret, to St. Astraia Girls' School.
Due to his high-ranking position and beliefs, Croire soon found himself greatly opposing the Reformists and Giliath Osborne due to the latter's position as a commoner. He intended to unite the noble faction and reinstate their rule over the commoners. Knowing that he could not link himself to actions that would damage his reputation, he searched for a way to destabilize the government. Croire found an opportunity when he met Crow Armbrust around S.1196, who shared a similar hatred for Osborne due to him merging Jurai with Erebonia. He then began funneling funds to Crow, who formed the Imperial Liberation Front, a terrorist organization intent on toppling the current government.
With the Imperial Liberation Front gathering like-minded members, Croire then began focusing on the nobles, appealing to their sense of pride. Many of the nobles agreed with Croire, but a few were hesitant or refused. These nobles were then forcefully coerced into joining his cause. After Crow became the Awakener of Ordine, Croire saw the potential in mass-produced variants of the Divine Knight and sent a request to G. Schmidt. Schmidt ended up creating the Panzer Soldats, which were far more powerful than Erebonia's best military forces.
Cayenne controls a great deal of resources and is the main backer and Supreme Leader of the Noble Alliance. He secretly arranged for the construction of the Pantagruel.
Knowing the threat of the Railway Military Police and Intelligence Division, Croire waited for the right time to begin his coup, using the time to convince nobles to join his cause, including Rufus Albarea. Little did he know that Rufus was actually a member of the Ironbloods, a group that Osborne had hand-picked to serve him.
Croire first appears at the end of Class VII's field study in Legram during the events of Trails of Cold Steel. He had arrived to speak with Victor S. Arseid, irritated that he was training the Imperial Army and requested he join the Noble Alliance. Victor humbly refuses his request, so Cayenne takes his leave, warning him not to try anything that would harm the Noble Alliance. As he leaves, he runs into Class VII, recognizing Laura and Jusis, telling them that he expects to meet them again in the future.
After Crow fires a shot that appears to kill Osborne, Croire started his coup, sending the Pantagruel above Heimdallr to deploy Panzer Soldats, who quickly overwhelm the 1st Armored Division. He then begins his forced rule over Erebonia.
In Trails of Cold Steel II, Duke Cayenne first officially appears towards the end of Act 1 making an official statement from the Pantagruel after he attacks Ymir. Prior to this though he is only really mentioned in the Imperial Chronicle as having taken control of Heimdallr and leading the Noble Alliance to victory against the Reformists.
In his magical transmission, Cayenne congratulates the team for coming together and expresses his disappointment that Jusis and Laura had chosen to join them. He further tells Jusis that his father was very disappointed when he had heard that Jusis had run away to join his friends. He then impeaches Rean to come and have a discussion with him - hoping to sway the Ashen Chevalier to his side. Rean reluctantly agrees to the meeting and flies up to the Pantagruel in Valimar (after kicking Celine out) in order to protect Ymir and his friends and to find out Cayenne's motives.
On the Pantagruel, Valimar is tied up by Cayenne's subordinates and Rean is escorted at gunpoint to the deck. An the deck, Duke Cayenne addresses Rean and states that he doesn't want the war to continue on as much as he does.He excuses their actions as being a response to Chancellor Giliath Osborne's unreasonable behavior, and he then goes to on list the many atrocities that Osborne had committed e.g. misused the trust that he had with the King, stomped on Erebonian culture and traditions, treated the nation as his own private property etc.
He then asks Rean if he had noticed this and Rean is forced to agree based on his experiences with him. Duke Cayenne then goes and says that now that Osborne is gone, they can now go back and turn back time back to "the good old days." He further suggests that they should now "put aside their differences and join hands." Hearing this, Rean disputes Cayenne's claims with cynicism and labels all of the terrible deeds that the Alliance has done.
In response, Cayenne tries to alter the truth by saying that they have placed the Imperial family under their "protection." Cayenne then continues on with his request that is for Rean and Valimar to join them, so that they can add to their power and publicity of being in the right. He also states that its okay if Rean doesn't agree with their ideals and that the only thing that matters is that they quickly win the war.
Rean objects stating that it's not so simple, but Rufus Albarea and Vita Clotilde both agree with Duke Cayenne and further emphasizes that military might often controls the tide of battle. Duke Cayenne then firmly states his earlier arguments and suggestively implies that if he ever wants his peaceful days back at school with Elise and Alfin Reise Arnor, then he'll have to fight for them - ultimately blackmailing him.
Rufus interrupts again and states that whatever Rean decides, Elise and Alfin's safety is reassured either way. Duke Cayenne agrees to Rufus' proposal. Duke Cayenne then allows Rean time to decide and allows him to walk around the ship freely, but this backfires as Rean ends up escaping from the Pantagruel with Alfin.
Class VII would prove to be a thorn for Croire, as they quickly undo all of his gains in a span of few months. Desperate, he takes Cedric Reise Arnor, the crown prince, and returns to Heimdallr, bringing forth the Infernal Castle. After Crow and Vita conceded defeat, Croire then forced Cedric into the Vermillion Apocalypse. Despite the power of the corrupted Divine Knight, it was eventually defeated by Rean and Crow, albeit the latter died in the process. Croire refused to accept defeat and held the unconscious Cedric at knifepoint, only for Rufus to arrive and declare his apprehension. Croire was confused until Osborne showed up, who revealed himself to be alive and monitoring his actions from the very start.
As a result of his coup, Croire was sentenced to lifelong imprisonment and he lost his position as acting duke for the Cayenne family. This position would end up being taken by Musse in S.1206. His assets and fortune, including the Cayenne mansion in Ordis were seized.