- Before the Fall manga
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Xenophon is a rather short man with messy white hair. He commonly wears an eyepiece with a magnifying device attached over his right eye, which he uses to inspect both machines and people.
Due to his status as a workman and his many technological achievements, Xenophon is a proud man; however, he is not arrogant in the slightest. Xenophon can be a little bit brash at times and has a hasty manner of speaking, even to newcomers and his fellow workers.
Xenophon established himself as a master craftsman in his early days and was considered by many to be the best craftsman who ever lived. Eventually, a young man named Angel usurped his position and became credited as the "King of Inventions." Intrigued, Xenophon expressed an interest in meeting him one day. Several months later, Xenophon would get the chance to take a trip to the newly built Industrial City and shared a carriage with the man. Wary at first of the other, the two would eventually build a rapport and become close friends. As they spent a week within the newly built city, Angel would present an invention him and his assistant Corina devised that would help the Survey Corps fight against Titans more effectively. Xenophon and Sorum watched the demonstration and Xenophon became fascinated with the device. The two resolved to work on the design once returning to Shiganshina. However, a Titan was let into the city by a Titan cult and the resulting carnage left many, including Corina, dead. After hearing of the disastrous expedition beyond the walls that Angel took part in, Xenophon was saddened to hear that Angel forsook his life and went into exile.
Sometime during the next fifteen years, Xenophon decided to take it upon himself to continue Angel's work and took the device with him after moving to the Industrial City. Despite making several improvements to the core design, his work on it began to slow down until it reached an almost complete standstill. In addition, Xenophon was unable to test the device himself (due to unknown reasons) and with his workers knowing how risky some of his inventions were, were reluctant to volunteer and test it.
After Kuklo was captured by the Military Police, Jorge Pikale arranged for Sharle Inocencio to stay with Xenophon in the Industrial City while Jorge worked to free Kuklo. Before he left, Jorge requested to borrow the device from Xenophon as a precaution.
Several days later, Jorge arrives back to the Industrial City with both Kuklo and Cardina Baumeister, his former pupil who he also saved from the Titans. They are brought to Xenophon's workshop, where they see the foreman asleep on a workbench. Sharle goes and wakes him up, stating that he has visitors. Groggily, Xenophon gets up and notices that Jorge is with them and is glad to see his device was brought back and in good condition; Jorge mentions that it was instrumental in saving both Kuklo and Cardina.
Noticing them, Xenophon formally introduces himself and calls Kuklo by his infamous moniker of "Titan's son." He circles around Kuklo, intently studying him. He then sees Cardina and inquires if he is "a spare," offending the latter. Then, Xenophon asks to see both of their arms. Satisfied by what he sees, Xenophon asks if he can take the two men in like with Sharle; Jorge agrees and says that he will come back for them once he confirms the Military Police have stopped looking for them. Xenophon mentions that both Kuklo and Cardina are strong and would make excellent fighters, stating that the Survey Corps are in dire need of new soldiers; Jorge agrees, mentioning how both were able to survive numerous attacks by multiple Titans outside the Walls.
Later during dinner, Xenophon is surprised when Jorge mentions that he will be returning to the Training Corps the next morning. He expresses disappointment that he has no recent noteworthy developments to show Jorge and casually mentions a recent test he performed with a cannon barrel that ruptured. When several workers chastise him for it and say they are more than capable of performing the tests for him, Xenophon mentions that it is the best way for him to see results; he tells Jorge that he wished to be there to see the device in action. He is with Jorge and Cardina and is shocked when he hears Kuklo mention his belief that Titans will one day breach the Wall.
The next morning, both Xenophon and Jorge were unable to sleep due to Kuklo's prediction the previous night, something Cardina takes note of. He takes them on a walk through the city and shows them the primary furnace where the weapons are made. Cardina mentions how big it is and Xenophon says it is fifty meters tall, roughly the same size as Wall Maria. He also says that it is where the iron bamboo is made, pointing to the tallest smokestack; he also takes pride in recalling that his own workshop had a hand in designing it. Eventually, Xenophon sees a Military Police carriage approaching and flags it down. He asks permission from the driver to allow him to access to the main groves, stating that he wanted to "show some of our fresh blood" the primary harvesting spot. When Jentsch Dafner, the head of the Military Police, inquires who Kuklo and Cardina are, Xenophon gives them aliases and are able to convince him to let them through. Jentsch allows them through and then departs, expressing to Xenophon that he will be looking forward to his next monthly report.
As they travel to the forest, Xenophon discusses that the grove they are heading to is the only place where iron bamboo grows naturally; thus, the army must stay vigilant to try and stop illegal harvesting of the bamboo. When Kuklo and Cardina inquire about the bamboo, Xenophon explains that the plants absorb the metallic compounds in the soil and as it grows, the bamboo pulls in the metal and causes it to harden. He reveals to Sharle that her knife was fashioned by him out of the bamboo. However, he goes on to say that due to the limited amount available, harvesting is strictly limited until they find out how the bamboo grows so they can replicate it. Despite this setback, Xenophon theorizes that perhaps the bamboo resides above a vein of iron ore or that it combines that with other elements to form a new and unknown alloy.
After hearing the story about how the first Titan was defeated, Jorge leaves the Industrial City; before he leaves, Xenophon announces that he will do his best to keep improving the design and functionality of the device. Sharle asks Xenophon to become his assistant; he is initially unsure but eventually agrees to the request. He also formally takes Kuklo and Cardina as workers as well under his supervision. Over the course of the next few months, Xenophon tasks both Kuklo and Cardina with practicing and training with the device; to pacify the curiosity of the other workers, he gives them the excuse that the two are testing his more dangerous inventions. When Jorge returns, Xenophon shows him the most recent version of the device, while expressing disappointment that he has not been able to change much from Angel's initial design.
While Jorge takes Kuklo and Cardina back to the Wall to test the device, he tasks Sharle to start sorting through several boxes of weapons at the back of his workshop; since she has gotten better at noticing deficiencies, he tells her to sort out any weapons or equipment that can be repaired. He notices Sharle holding an iron bamboo dagger and recalls that it once belonged to his friend Angel. As she leaves to treat the workers, Xenophon reflects back to when they both were working in the factory and muses that he has so many questions to ask Angel.
Several days later, the members of the Dissidence Movement began a planned rebellion within the city. One of the targets was Xenophon's workshop; however, Xenophon and the workers were able to safely get away. He is brought before the leader of the movement, August, who asks for him to join the movement. Xenophon begrudgingly agrees to, but only after he negotiates the release of Sharle and his workers. Despite this, Xenophon ultimately refuses to go and only does so when August forces Sharle to come along as a means of insurance. As the revolution fails, they retreat back to Xenophon's workshop and are taken to the roof. There, August threatens Sharle's safety in order to force Xenophon to communicate with the gathered Military Police to ensure safe passage for him. During the chaos, Xenophon is kicked off the roof but is saved by Sharle. He then is among those who see Kuklo utilize the device to save Sharle and flies away; Xenophon mentions to himself how fortunate that he was able to see his device in action after all.
After returning back to his workshop, Xenophon is surprised to see Sharle return but is quite shocked to see Angel as well. After catching up with his long-time friend, they begin to argue over their different interpretations of how the device should works. Fortunately, a report from Cardina arrived at roughly the same time Sharle and Angel did and Xenophon finally is able to understand how Angel interpreted it from the beginning. He marvels at the proposal to combine the control system and sword, a frequent problem encountered by him and Angel, into one; he is shocked to hear from Angel that Sharle was the one who came up with the idea. However, as production began, they are visited by Gloria Bernhart of the Military Police. She informs the two inventors that they have three months before an expedition will be initiated in order to test if there is merit behind the device and the Survey Corps as a whole. Their protests fall on deaf ears and are forced to race against the clock to give the Corps as much time as possible to properly train and test the device beforehand. Luckily, they are able to finish the design within days and both Angel and Sharle travel with the newly christened 'vertical maneuvering equipment' to the training facility.
- Angel Aaltonen - Friends since their first meeting, Xenophon and Angel shared a mutual respect for each other due to their skill as craftsmen. Despite being his superior, Xenophon held Angel to a much higher standard due to the latter's unorthodox way of designing inventions. Xenophon took it upon himself to continue refining Angel's device after the latter went into exile.
- Jorge Pikale - Xenophon is good friends with the former head of the Survey Corps. When Jorge requests to borrow the device, he does not hesitate to, which illustrates that Xenophon has a great deal of trust in him.
- Sharle Inocencio - Initially sent to him as a precaution, Xenophon would see a lot of potential in Sharle and appreciates her desire to help whatever way she can. When Sharle requests to become Xenophon's assistant, he is initially hesitant to let her but later agrees. Sharle later is the one who brings Angel back to the Industrial City and helped figure out how to solve past problems with the device, increasing Xenophon's respect for her.
- His surname is Finnish.