|“||...whom Fate has given a starring, if brief, role to play in the drama we call life.||”|
–Stan Lee, on the simple spider that did to Peter Parker's life what Diclonius did to Kouta and company
The Minor Diclonii listed here have less direct impact on the series than characters with their articles, but their appearances are critical to the development of the story, as they often bring vital plot points to the reader's attention. Barring other evidence, these Diclonii are all Silpelits.
List of Diclonii
Shown briefly at the end of Manga Chapter 7, this unnamed horned girl is naked, chained to a wall and bleeding, while Kurama declares her unsuitable for their purposes, later revealed to be the recapture of Lucy. While the possibility exists that this was Nana or Number 28, especially since she resembles Nana physically, Nana was later sent off for the mission in question after being found suitable. However, his statement could have been about Nana's refusal to harm others, which would hamper her apprehension of Lucy. Since Number 28 was said to have never manifested her vectors, it seems unlikely she would even be considered for the recovery mission as well. The implication appears to be that the Second Diclonius did have vectors, but that they failed to prove adequate to consider sending her against Lucy. Her horns almost seem to be drooping. Since the horns on a Diclonius are made of cartilage as well as bone, it is not impossible that weakened horns could look like this after the girl is exhausted. However, it seems more likely that the mangaka's art style was still developing at this time (see: early versions of Wanta) because later on, horns were shown to be much firmer and have a definite shape. In any event, by her mere one-page presence, the Second Diclonius first showed readers that Lucy was not the only one of her kind, and by implication that there were perhaps much more such girls.
In the anime version, it's very clearly Nana who is the second Diclonius introduced, although in a somewhat similar scene and depiction.
At the beginning of Manga Chapter 59 and in the middle of Anime Episode 10 a group of police officers carefully approach an upstairs apartment, having just found a young male's severed head in the basket of a child's bicycle. It is not the first such gruesome sight they have encountered that evening, and they have no idea what to make of it. Entering the apartment, dressed for a firefight and armed heavily, they enter the apartment, only to find a terrified little girl, whom they take to be a perhaps accidental survivor of the massacres. Her hair is covered by a twin-tailed sleeping cap, and she runs up crying to embrace one of the officers, who tries to ask her if she saw these horrors happen and if she knows who did it. In a heartbeat, two officers die, torn apart by an unseen force. Realizing that the girl is the source of this, the remaining officers open fire on the girl, killing her. By the implication of this narrative, she is likely only just past three years of age. Given what the police found that evening, it seems likely she killed multiple families, probably including and starting with her own. It is also stated that this was far from an isolated incident.
This narrative does not involve any characters of real relevance to the story, but it is both indicative of the significant problems facing Humans as the Diclonius emerge and prompts many questions about how the situation we saw at the start of the series took shape. Two officers lose life and limb to a dangerous child because they don't think of her as the killer for whom they're searching. Kurama speaks of the tender, almost clueless age of emergence of these powers, and how this makes these innocent little girls, barely out of their infancy, a significant threat. We can and should question Kurama's methods and especially their morality, but girls like this one can and have killed, maybe seeing these rampages as just another game due to their young, still underdeveloped minds.
The girl is wearing a nightcap which hides her horns. Did her late parents force her to wear this or was it just a cute add-on to her nightclothes ensemble? Did she reason out for herself that it was better to hide her horns so as to attack people better? Did her parents abuse and hide her? Was she teased by other children? Could she have had a loving family and friends who accepted her, and could it all have started with something as innocent as an older sibling not playing with her, or beating her at a game? Or perhaps a stranger she didn't know came to the door and gave her parents a hard time, and things escalated from there? Did the DNA Voice heard by Lucy and other diclonii drive her to do this? Was she merely a bad seed, potentially murderous with or without horns at her young age? Was she lost the moment she started killing, or could a different approach have saved her life and others?
Disturbing in and of itself, the Ambush Diclonius sequence encapsulates every last question raised by Elfen Lied in regards to the disposition of these girls. Is there a way to help families survive and bring up their horned child in a safe way, or will Human bigotry and the easily swayed temper of a toddler who ages twice as fast, to begin with, make any strategy that does not involve euthanasia pointless? Kurama, for all his flaws, didn't merely set out to destroy these girls, but harsh realities plus the hidden agendas of his colleague and employer made his raising to himself and then bringing these questions to the right people almost impossible.
In many respects, both the most helpless and yet also the most dangerous of the lesser Diclonius in the series, this fetal diclonius is seen only in an ultrasound near the end of Manga Chapter 72. This fetus' appearance in a hospital located in the city of Anjo in Chubu Region, many miles from Kamakura, shows that the sinister plans of the series' main antagonist, Chief Kakuzawa, have begun to come to fruition. It also begs the question, will the Chief even bother to send out people to collect and destroy these children as they emerge, since their births are part of his master scheme? Will the doctor and parents decide to end the pregnancy? That is by no means certain, since only doctors in Kamakura, some implied to be aware of the Diclonius, would know what was happening. The greatest horror comes in knowing that, in a few years time, this child will very likely either be long dead or waging an unrelenting war against Humankind. This unborn child and others like it may well be different from Lucy, Nana, Mariko and even the clones. The Chief's boasting and the accounts by Kouta at series' end speak of adult Diclonii threatening the world. Even doubled aging standard to Silpelits cannot account for babies born near the series' conclusion being old enough to be considered adults. This puzzle is particularly the case when, by the time of the tenth anniversary of Lucy's death, the war is over and the precautionary birth ban lifted, with Kouta now the father of a girl at least seven years of age. Again the terror multiplies as we realize through simple math that this child and many many others like her aged rapidly and knew nothing but misery and war-assuming she was not simply destroyed in the womb. Even if not her specifically, the child in that picture represents a group of Diclonius who will never know even the incredibly bittersweet lives of the Diclonius before them, and so the Chief's efforts to become God mark him instead as someone much further down the celestial hierarchy.
The Shadowed Diclonius
This diclonius is shown, not as herself or even himself, but in two narratives, one by Chief Kakuzawa, the other by Kouta. In both cases, she may be iconic, rather than real. In the Chief's case, he describes the aim of his plans, while Kouta's story speaks of that sick ambition's grim fulfillment. The diclonius is surrounded by her vectors and by a seeming storm of darkness, her face resembling that of a cornered animal. She is the embodiment of a mad man's schemes and the possible judgment of God Himself visually. While Kouta's account of the war is spare in details, this image sums up the nightmare Humans who had never heard of or met a Diclonius nor knew anything of Lucy or the Kakuzawas must have faced. This Diclonius could easily be the grown version of the In-Utero one listed above. With them, all choices and understanding are done with; they are moot. In this hellish glimpse of what might easily have been the Apocalypse, we see one of the greatest tragedies of Elfen Lied. These are not the creations of Lucy, but of Kakuzawa's plans. This individual shows the scope and sadness of an Armageddon-like war based on a lie a persecuted people told themselves as they were hunted down like dogs.
The Demonstration Diclonius
As with the Shadowed One, the existence of this Diclonius is in question. She only appears in the anime, during the tenth episode, while Professor Kakuzawa tries to convince Kurama that the work they are doing is vital. He does this by providing an account that makes it seem like all Diclonius children are ticking time bombs which go off at the age of three, automatically killing their family members. Sadly, this argument ends up ignoring the willfulness and steep learning curve of three-year-old children. In fact, his narration even appears to ignore the actual events shown in the girl's sequence. In it, a young Human boy has a Diclonius with a cap covering her horns cornered with his dog, who is growling at the girl while he smiles. This stance may indicate he was targeting her for simple if cruel fun, not knowing of her horns. In response, she decapitates him, then attempts to pet the dog, who is still snarling at her and bites her. Though confused as to why the dog bit her, she doesn't retaliate and instead cries while the dog runs away. The only part of this sequence that fits into Kakuzawa's narrative is the seeming unwillingness of Diclonius to harm animals, which Kakuzawa turns around to emphasize the new species status as the enemy of Humans. This girl resembles young Lucy and wears the same style of cap, but it is unlikely this girl is her since she is primarily an example used to show Diclonius nature as understood by the Diclonius Research Institute at that point, and thus is just an anecdotal representation.
Oomori, who was Kurama's assistant before Isobe at the Diclonius Research Institute, suffered an enormous blow when he learned his newborn daughter was a Diclonius, statistically a Silpelit by birth. This shock was multiplied a hundredfold when Kurama and Professor Kakuzawa informed him that, according to the policy of Chief Kakuzawa, the girl would have to be euthanized to avert the potential threat she posed. Despite Oomori's heartbroken pleas, the child was put to death. Oomori's daughter was never seen nor even glimpsed, but her fate is not left in question. She remains relevant for more than just the karmic twist that bites back hard at Kurama later on as he faces the situation with Mariko. In Oomori, there is a face given to the many parents who did not wish to dispose of a 'freak,' but had every intention of raising and loving their child. One of the central conflicts of the series lies in whether their wishes would have saved their children or if they were naive, given the tender age of power emergence for these girls, as well as the possibility of an inborn instinct to kill Humans. Whatever that answer might have been, the agenda of the Kakuzawas swept that debate aside. In Oomori's tears and the inevitable likely ruin of his life after that, since his infection means all his future children would be Diclonius, one sharp corner of the Elfen Lied saga is brought into direct focus.