Lionel's life isn't all the glamor, pride and glory that he makes it out to be. Deep down, he actually feels more like a mistake than anything else.
The Goldmann family line is just as proud and noble as Lionel makes them out to be (well, at least half, which is still quite something!), though, there is one small caveat. Most of his relatives would rather Lionel didn't exist at all! His family is widely known for vocalized, harmonic semblance known as "The Lion's Roar," which, like many hereditary semblances, has been honed over the generations to produce stunning displays of power and might.
The Crest of the Goldmann family isn't really a lion with bull-horns. In fact, it's actually a Lion standing in front of a bull. The horns are a reference to the Bronto family, a second family that has been subservient to the Goldmann's for over a hundred years. Unlike the Goldmanns, the Bronto family had never shown much aptitude for hunting. Occasionally, one would appear from their family with a semblance that made them stronger than normal, but that only came about once every few generations.
Lionel is a child of both these families, the bastard offspring of an already-married Goldmann and a Bronto maid, the latter of which sadly passed in childbirth. His father, while certainly unfaithful in every respect, wasn't so heartless as to leave young Lionel to fend for himself, and decided to take him in as a son, much to the eternal ire of his wife. This odd upbringing, wedged between a duty-driven father and a spiteful mother made for most of his early life.
On his thirteenth birthday, Lionel's semblance finally came out while playing sports with a cousin. It's appearance made for the largest scandal the family had ever known. The boy had bull horns
, the hallmark of a semblance from the Bronto family. The two family had always been separate; mixing blood between them was incredibly taboo. Lionel's father had kept his ill-begotten son's origins to himself ever since the boy was born, but there was no hiding his semblance, or those horns.
The change Lionel saw in his family was immediate, and traumatizing. People he once considered friends and brothers wouldn't so much as talk to him anymore. Updated versions of family photos began replacing the ones that included him in it. The entire Goldmann's family, for all of it's Roaring pride, and loud pursuits, were brushing Lionel under the rug with the most deafening sound of all.
Fearing his own excommunication from the Goldmann family line, Lionel's father sent the boy away to live with his Uncle, Rob Berof Goldmann
, whom he lived with until he was accepted to Beacon. Rob, unlike Lionel's father, saw potential in the boy that could go beyond what both the Bronto and Goldmann families could even imagine, and began training Lionel.
Rob's effect on Lionel was instrumental in making him the man he is today. His uncle gave him the courage to say 'No, I will not fall to your silence; You will never make me vanish silently into the night. I AM STILL HERE. LIONEL BRONTO GOLDMANN IS HERE, AND I'M NOT GOING ANYWHERE. HEAR ME ROAR.' Spurred on by his own desire to leave a mark on the world, and to be recognized as someone to truly be remembered, Lionel put his body and soul into training with his Uncle. He ate, slept, and breathed physical effort. When it came time for the Beacon's entrance exam, Lionel had trained his body to the point where he didn't even need to use a weapon on the Grimm he was scheduled to fight. Instead, he was able to crush it's skull with his bare hands.
Lionel is done being silent, and done playing the victim. Quite literally, he has resolved to take life by the horns, and steer himself onto a journey so great and inspiring, even his family will be unable to quiet his existence.
Because one day, even if he has to say it at the top of his lungs, everyone will remember the name Lionel. Bronto. Goldmann.