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Elsie Blackwood Edit

Quick Summary

Elsie Blackwood is the 16[1] year old human face of MMFEC[2]. When not spying or negotiating for MMFEC, Elsie can be found providing backup with her sniper rifle or driving the getaway van. When the going gets really tough, she pulls out her rocket launcher, which she has named Rocky.

Past History Edit

Elsie has a mysterious past that is not fully known to the rest of MMFEC. Only her butler and guardian, Cromwell knows her full story.

Elsie and Cromwell joined MMFEC after working on their own for a few years. The pair spent time in Tir Tairngire after fleeing Boston from the Whitetree Family and the Boston Lockdown three years ago.

Elsie speaks 8 languages and is able to influence individuals to do her bidding--either through diplomacy, negotiation or intimidation. In addition to being highly charismatic, Elsie also uses tailored pheromones to influence the people around her.

Elsie suffers from Kleptomania, and has to steal periodically to alleviate the symptoms of her addiction.

Elsie also has a peculiar condition Cromwell referred to early on. After waking up at Ma1nfram3's, this is the the first thing he had to do: Hold on, I need to do one thing first. I'll go in the bathroom and I'll make sure Elsie didn't draw anything on my face like I do every morning.[3]

This condition kept manifesting throughout the show as Elsie seized every opportunity to inflict ridicule with her well-honed sharpie.

She has a Boston Terrier dog named Captain Pickles.

Show History Edit

After a few months of working with MMFEC, Elsie was recognized and exposed by members of the Seattle Yakuza as Chelsea Whitetree, first daughter and heir of the Boston Whitetrees, an organized crime family in Boston. Members of the Whitetree Family kidnapped Cromwell, and the members of MMFEC had to mount a rescue mission. Once Cromwell was rescued, he and Elsie faked Elsie's death, pretending that Cromwell had killed her. With her "Elsie" identity effectively dead, she has begun a new life under the new alias "Ellie Hawthorne".

Elsie Captain Rocky sheliloquy

Elsie, rocking with Rocky, as in ep. 41. With Captain Pickles. Picture by Shelley Low.

In a bout of kleptomania verging on the berserk, Elsie saw, in the confusion created by the sudden appearance of a dragon in Seattle's sky amid a mana storm, a perfect opportunity to go on a "shopping" spree for jewelry at the nearest Neostrom department store. Cromwell had to get her out of a fistfight with the young security guy on duty[4], then forcibly extract her with Fang's help. Cromwell tried to soothe the still-flailing Elsie with these words of wisdom:
You can steal when we get to, er, Ma1nfram3's place.[5]
In light of that day's events, having just failed her GED[6] didn't seem that bad. After all, the dragon probably didn't have a GED either.

Elsie acquired a Ranger Arms SM-5 sniper rifle in the quiet weeks between the election and the following run[7].

As she was investigating the disappearances of Magnuson Cromwell Foundation protégés, Elsie showed her understanding of teenage urchin psychology by boldly setting herself up to be mugged by a small group of them. After initially being met with a snarky comment about a fence and pointed questions regarding the Pope (Is the Pope catholic?) and bears relieving themselves in the woods (this one, inappropriate for a verbatim quote) she finally got a clue about a Twiggy who had disappeared[8].

In the same episode, Elsie (along with Ma1nfram3) got to interview Liam, the older brother of Sam Ortega, the older child whose disappearance MMFEC was investigating. Then, introducing herself as Sam Ortega, Elsie spoke to the academic advisor at Sam's school (Garfield High School) about Sam's extracurricular activities with the Amethyst Order and seemingly limited job prospects[9].

Elsie, with help from Gavroche and Darshan, infiltrated the Amethyst Order through the school, doing her best to be the next abductee, and solicited Ma1nfram3's help to track her fellow recruits in case one of them were kidnapped instead. As this was happening, the odd flirty message Fang sent to Cromwell as she prepared to join Ma1nfram3 at her meeting with Dani Denner aroused Elsie's suspicion that Fang was seeing someone else[10].

Elsie then had her sniper rifle rather than her rocket launcher to join the fight against the guards trying to abduct Ma1nfram3. After all, she had only set out to tail Fang[11]. In an episode-long fight that lasted a handful of seconds in game time, Elsie proved that she could be counted on to do right thing after she had tried everything else as she finally downed a guard with a bullet and got the whole Ares squad to flee in their van. Though she failed to place a tracker on it, MMFEC managed to follow it and determine that it was indeed loosely linked to Ares.

At the Galahad academy Edit

Elsie red sheliloquy

Picture posted on twitter by Shelley Low

Elsie flew MMFEC uneventfully to Detroit, Michigan. Learning from past exits from foreign countries, she fueled up the plane immediately on arrival. She arranged for transport with Colleen, the lady they met at the airport (or rather a place where people keep planes; and remove planes; emphasis on the word planes.[12]). What started as Fang's request for a yellow taxi ended with Fang acquiring[13] and driving the yellow school bus that showed up driven by a Charlie who had taken the yellowest thing I could from the impound lot he was running.[14]

At the Galahad Academy, while waiting for Ma1nfram3 to open doors for her, Elsie chose to pose as a drunk student outside the dorms' building and found a way to disguise the sniper rifle strapped to her back. The nice, sober, guard who let her enter the building nearly found the disguised rifle. Elsie's plan to infiltrate the student body and take a quick 3 hours' nap in a dorm room selected by Ma1nfram3 raised a few brows, though her arguments (it happens in real life, she drove piloted a plane, next phase would begin in the morning, she needed a nap) made sense.

After Ma1nfram3 failed to open a door, she started to think of looking for a bush neither Ma1nfram3 nor Cromwell was in when she had to charm the female guard again. Fang advised her to go to a bathroom, because such rooms are unlocked and have no cameras, then sleep on the floor as if she had had a bad night. She hesitated at the though that she would never get to make a buffing in the bathroom joke again[15], which she later indicated would be a sacrifice for her. Lauren mischievously encouraged her to go sleep in someone else's dorm room instead. Elsie used a mixture she prepared in her Ziploc baggy to feign throwing up, poured some of it in her hand, flushed the rest into a toilet, went to a shower where she curled up after spreading crispy chips around.[16]

After returning from various errands in the administrative and academics buildings with Ma1nfram3, Elsie suggested that, based on her hunch[17] that the clandestine lab they were looking for in the academics building was probably in the basement; and the office with relevant information, behind the mana barrier on the 7th floor, the 7th floor would probably have less security and hence needed to be broken into first.

As Elsie and Ma1nfram3 set out to sneak into the academics building, between 3 and 4 PM, an IRL bathroom pause prompted Ma1nfram3, Cromwell and Elsie to recount their recent runs for corporations. Elsie's took place in an orbital launch facility in Sekondi, where she was captured, freed herself and met Arislen. She interrupted her story without revealing which corporations had been involved[18].[19]

Justice for Fang Edit

Elsie played a key role at several in Fang's personal quest for justice. She first followed her instructions in the not-very-well-conceived plan to retrieve a not-very-existing evidence box. Then she got a reluctant, strangely philanthropic Tempo dealer to agree first to sell her a dose then to be ready to sell her more the next day. That key step led to the trap that ultimately succeeded. When on site, she kept watch with her rifle. Finally, as Elsie was the only MMFEC uninjured member (not including Fang's mentor and temporary member Lance Pendleton) after the series of explosions that nearly decimated the group, she drove Van Helshark away from the facility and sent her own bike back home on auto-pilot.[20]

Elsie's birthday party Edit

Elsie got a very formal party (By contrast, in her family, it would be the day to kill someone) for her sweet sixteenth birthday on February 14[21]. Several friends of MMFEC's came, gifts were given, fun was had.

The gifts included:

  • From Ma1nfram3, a pink Madonna-esque dress in a big box;
  • From a dressed-up Mordecai in poncho, party hat and noisemaker; a shell where you can always hear growling;
  • From Cromwell, pieces of jewelry that can be assembled as a gun (not a powerful one);
  • From Fang, tuxedoed, with tails and a bright yellow lining, a cravat; various objects about which Mordecai quipped "You can assemble them into a gun as well!";
  • From Miss J, who doesn't celebrate birthdays, an offer to help Elsie on her GED and a data stick containing information of people you may want to know from locked-down Boston;
  • From Rachel, Elsie's sometime boss and ex of by then Ma1nfram3's ex Captain Paul Moore, a big salmon, that Barnaby, Cromwell's Large Dog that is also a cybernetically enhanced bear[22], soon started to eat.

In a short, sad scene, Cromwell evoked Elsie's dead mother, whom she resembles. Elsie decided to celebrate the living. She was also glad not to be there, with her stupid crazy family.

Right after this scene, Cromwell approached Fang and started to evoke his mysterious marriage.

Pictures from the event surfaced soon afterwards:[23]

Elsie's birthday was evoked in a followup incident[24]: After doing her part investigating the disappearance of Magitek researchers, Elsie failed to resist temptation and was compelled to shop and "shop" for an older wardrobe and accessories that Lauren described as trendy clothes, disposable, über-cool, not terribly expensive. She didn't get caught, which was rather convenient as MMFEC were on their way to chasing after the kidnappers.

Later[25], Elsie gave a few more details about what a Whitetree is supposed to do when reaching sixteen: kill an innocent and get a tattoo[26]. She intended to do neither.

In France for Ares Edit

Elsie was sent by Ares on a mission[27] to investigate whether Mai1nfram3's parents had feelers in one of their Squires schools in France. Ma1nfram3 was agreeably surprised by Ares's behavior in that instance. Elsie enrolled in their Master Squire program, even though French[28] is not one of the eight languages she speaks. Her skills in non-verbal communication were helpful and she could use language software anyway.

Mordecai's knowledge of French would have been helpful on this mission, had Elsie been aware of it... except that he wouldn't have been there anyway.

Elsie didn't find anything sketchy about Main1fram3's parents but got to use a rocket launcher. She didn't give many details. She did mention that Aztechnology had plenty of money to replace things.

While in France, Elsie made a friend, named William[29], an archivist she brought back to Seattle[30] but not home[31].

Hereunder are parts of the conversation about the archivist that continued for a while[32]:

Cromwell: He did ask for me to provide him a complete inventory of everything in the house for some reason.
Elsie: He just likes to make lists. He is really nice and he [...] wanted a change of scenery. Maybe he had a warrant out for him in France.
Cromwell: Maybe Miss J can get him a job.
Elsie: he knows a lot of history things.
Lauren: He's like weirdly into spelling.[33]
Ma1nfram3: He can just join the club of people who know entirely too much about us.
Fang: The two of them. And only the two of them.[34]
Cromwell: I say, give him a job at the Draco Foundation. Then all the people who knows about us they'll be in the same place.
Elsie then mentioned high explosive yield, which didn't bode well for the people who know entirely too much about us. She did conclude this conversation with nicer thoughts, though:
Anyway he's nice. I'm gonna meet him later.
Ma1nfram3 then turned the conversation to how life as a 16-year-old treated Elsie.

What's in a face? Edit

Elsie got a cybernetic augment back in Boston she was not told about, at the same time as the pheromones she already knew she had.

The reveal came in stages:

Jeannine first hinted that something (mischief) was going to happen.

Then, right after MMFEC had completed HOD's test and Bill Akima had called to meet them, something activated in Elsie's face, causing her pain. Cromwell noticed that Your face is kind of in a different place, until everything returned to normal after a minute. Jeannine explained that bones in Elsie's face had been replaced by ceramic moving parts.

Elsie poses frowns sheliloquy

Speaking of Elsie's face...
Picture posted on twitter by Shelley Low

This revelation caused two opposite reactions: Mordecai was appalled by the idea of replacing one's own bones with such an implant and by the trauma Elsie had suffered. Ma1nfram3, on her side, saw real practical advantage in the fact that, once Elsie knew how to control this augment, she would be able to use it to fool face scanners. Elsie was concerned that her face could be hacked wirelessly.

Naseam Deylan told Elsie more about this implant. Its sudden activation meant that its program had been turned on. They likened Elsie's painful experience to an old printer's test run, which should have been disabled. Deylan was interested in the very advanced technology that had allowed it to absorb calcium, which was necessary for it to be implanted at the unusually low age of 11 into a girl whose growth was not over. So interested in fact, that Deylan tried to persuade Elsie to enroll in further tests.[35]

After weighing the good (such as, on Ma1nfram3's suggestion, being able to mimic Lei Song's face and wreak a little bit of havoc in her Northgate mall), and the bad (her face something moving without her wanting it to, it was done without her consent, or Mordecai suggesting her life as she knew it was over) it didn't take long for Elsie to try her new face cosplay ability in the field.[36]

Is it over? Edit

Mordecai killed. Elsie and Fang badly injured in the same fight. With Venus and Akshara Nundry both dead, and at least some of their followers as well, would the surviving members of MMFEC finally be safe?

Was Mordecai right to say that We're safe for now, we'll protect each other? Or should they rather agree with Ma1nfram3 that Safety is an illusion? MMFEC had made more enemies, whose current whereabouts they didn't know[37].

Elsie may still a minor in the eyes of the law, she was ready to take charge of the group when she suggested them that You should move into the house. They would still be free to come and go, of course.

Edit

  1. 15 at the beginning of the show.
  2. Who likes to say Hello with rocket launchers. See Ep 57.
  3. See Ep 6.
  4. A remorseful Elsie later (see Ep 42) checked out on him. He had returned to work after exactly 0 day of sick leave, with a broken nose and a black eye.
  5. See Ep 41.
  6. Despite her command of history, as evidenced here or in SpEp 2.
  7. See Ep 42.
  8. See Ep 42. To be fair, Cromwell was keeping watch nearby at the time, ready to throw hatchets at the boys.
  9. The unflappable advisor was only confirming Liam's opinion about his brother.
  10. See Ep 42 and SSN #43.5.
  11. This perfectly normal behavior for a teenager slightly protective of her butler cum friend cum father figure is displayed in Ep 43.
  12. The whole dialogue, with the enlightening part about Seattle, is worth it.
  13. For ¥10,000. It is comparable to Van Helshark. Ma1nfram3 found that Charlie was not allowed to sell it or even use it as a taxi.
  14. See Ep 44.
  15. Which led to the following tally: Mordecai has had two bathroom adventures and Fang has also seen something she likes in the shower (referring to the incident that had involved naked Cromwell & Krund).
  16. Thus ended Ep 44.
  17. To Elsie's final "Just a guess", Lauren replied "That's a pretty good guess"
  18. It may be noted, though, that Arislen was, or is, with Shiawase and that Seattle Street News reported about a launch facility in Sekondi in various issues (See SSN #34, SSN #37 and SSN #41).
  19. See Ep 45.
  20. See Ep 46 and Ep 47.
  21. Despite the date, Winther was not coming.
  22. As Tony pointed out to Claudia, it's on the wiki.
  23. See Ep 50.
  24. See Ep 51.
  25. See Ep 53.
  26. Helpful as always, Fang suggested she get F*** you, parents tattooed on her face. Reactions were interesting.
  27. See Ep 53.
  28. The language of love, as remarked by Ma1nfram3 in a French accent.
  29. Or Wilian. He answers to both anyway.
  30. Going full meta here: I have to second Ma1nfram3's surprise and agree with her comment: That escalated quickly (in a good way). Writing in the wiki about a character created after me for my writing in the wiki, it won't create an infinite loop or a spacetime-continuum rift, will it?
  31. Because he was, like, 30 (said with a deep frown).
  32. And in which I was pretty much interested.
  33. Exhibit A.
  34. Referring to a line about Miss J. Thanks, Fang.
  35. See Ep 56.
  36. See Ep 57.
  37. Only the Red God kept track...

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