|Game||Tales of the Abyss|
The original Fon Master Ion is a character who appears in the Ion Gaiden issue of the Tales of the Abyss manga, and is mentioned within the actual game to be the actual human from which the replicas Ion, Sync, and Florian were cloned. Although he also appears in the Tales of the Abyss anime during a flashback. On the outside, he shows the same personality as the replica Ion, but the manga reveals the darker side of him that he never reveals to the public.
Ion was born in N.D. 2003 to Malkuth peasants and was later sent to Daath because the Score prophesied he would become the next Fon Master. After Fon Master Evenos died in N.D. 2011, Ion succeeded him. It was at this time that Arietta was assigned as Fon Master Guardian. Unlike the seventh replica, who later took his name and role, the original Ion hated the Score and became bitter after reading its foretelling of his own death. While he read the Score and made the citizens of the world happy, he noticed how they were all consumed by the Score, so he came to believe the world was trash that needed to be eliminated. This led him to cooperating with Van Grants's plans to create a new world free of the Score.
Although his outward personality was similar to the seventh replica's true demeanor, in reality, the original Ion's personality was far more twisted. When a group of rebels discovered the Fon Master replication project and attempted to confront Ion about it, Arietta became injured in the crossfire. In his anger, he attacked the group and killed them all with a single arte, stating he is the only one allowed to hurt "his pet". Furthermore, the first replica is shown to have been destroyed by Ion himself. In N.D. 2015, Ion died as the Score dictated, and the replica Ion took his place as Fon Master. Because of this, Arietta was demoted as Fon Master Guardian and later assigned as a God-General, while Anise took her place as Fon Master Guardian.
Relationship with Arietta
Ion found Arietta in the woods of the Rugnican Plains when she was a small child. He was the one who taught her human language, often thinking of her more as a pet than a person. Having lived in the wild with ligers, she knew nothing of the Score he hated so much. In the Ion Gaiden, Arietta gave Ion the skull of her deceased liger sister, claiming her sister had always protected her and would also protect Ion. After Ion made Arietta his guardian, he warned her that if she ever became useless, she would be disposed of, but she only smiled and said she would always be by Ion's side.
As the day of his predicted death drew nearer and he became further bed-ridden, Ion found much comfort in Arietta's presence. Because of this, he asked Van to end Arietta's role as Fon Master Guardian and allow her to join Van's special forces. Since Arietta knew the original Ion too well, she would have been able to tell the difference between the original and the replica. In his final moments, Ion thought back on his memories of Arietta and cried, realizing only too late that he had not been as alone as he had thought.