Elisabeth Bray

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Elisabeth Bray
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Biographical information

Other name(s):

Elsie-1
Elisabeth-1
Exo Stranger
A Link to the Future

Birthplace:

Eventide, Europa (Exo rebirth)

Species:

Human (formerly)
Exo

Gender:

Female

Hair color:

Black (human)[1]

Eye color:

Blue-white

Political and military information

Affiliation:

Clovis Bray (formerly)
House Bray

Notable info:

Trapped within a time loop
Capable of limited transtemporal warping
Former bearer of The Stranger's Rifle/No Time To Explain

 
No matter what I do, it always ends the same. Blood and betrayal. Then I'm back where I started. Right here. I'm being taunted, punished. Forced to relive this loop. There has to be a way out. I will find it. I have to save my sister.

Doctor Elisabeth "Elsie" Bray was a member of House Bray, the daughter of Clovis Bray II and Sylvie Bray, and sister of Willa, Alton, and Ana. She worked for her family's corporation as a starship and weapons engineer before joining her grandfather Clovis Bray I at the Eventide colony on Europa to assist on the Exo project. Elsie became one of the first Exos to prevent her death by a genetic disease introduced to her bloodline by Clovis I's experiments on her father. She later turned on her grandfather when she discovered the crimes he committed by experimenting with the Darkness and Stasis, but was defeated and rebooted by Clovis I. Elsie later regained those lost memories during the Battle of Europa when she and Clovis-1, a Exo-copy of Clovis, halted a Vex invasion and shut down the AI unit her grandfather had transferred his consciousness into.

Following the Collapse, Elsie lived through a dark future in which Ana was corrupted by the Darkness. The end of this future trapped Elsie in a time-loop and has left her determined to save her sister. As she cycles through the timelines Elsie has become a mythological figure amongst many in the Sol System, her true identity being lost to time and becoming known as the Exo Stranger. On the current loop, Elsie has made progress in her goal by befriending The Guardian and destroying the Black Heart of the Black Garden before it could corrupt Guardians. Following the Arrival of the Black Fleet, Elsie recruited Eris Morn and The Drifter into her plans but hid the full truth from them, while also entrusting the Guardian and her sister Ana with the knowledge of the potential future that awaited them in the hope that together they could finally prevent it from coming to pass.

Biography

Early Life

"Piecing together complex systems of causalities is the puzzle that defined me."
— Elsie Bray, reflecting on her life as a scientist[2]

Elsie was born to Clovis Bray II and Sylvie Bray as part of the powerful House Bray, which was headed by her grandfather Clovis Bray I. Prior to her birth, Clovis II manipulated her genetics so that she and her sister Willa would receive opposing maternal and paternal allele in an attempt to have a "diversified portfolio" of children.[3] As a child, Clovis I once told her a story about a cyborg woman who visited an oracle possessed by a dark influnce on a misty sea shore. The oracle listened to words from a future that had technology the cyborg needed, that future had a malevolent feeling and no sense of anything human. Out at sea was a tower, and Elsie assumed that the tower was the key to fairy tale, but Clovis I never finished telling it to her. This story would continue to haunt Elsie throughout her life.[4]

After the birth of her half-sister Anastasia from an extra-marital affair by Clovis II, Elsie disagreed with her mother Sylvie's decision to lie to Ana about her heritage by claiming she was adopted. Sylvie and the rest of the family saw much of Clovis I in Ana and feared she would follow her grandfather's footsteps.[5] At the age of thirteen, Elsie built her first Sparrow with the help of Ana. She did not know why she wanted to build the Sparrow so badly, only that she could focus on nothing else until she finished it. This Sparrow would later become a production model, as the G-335 Anseris Overdrive.[6]

Elsie eventually earned a doctorate and became one of humanity's greatest engineers. She designed multiple Jumpships, including the Eon-class line. Two of the most famous ships of this line were the Eon Trespass and the Shadow Trespass. She completed work on the Eon Trespass first[7] and attended the naming ceremony of the Shadow Trespass, which she designed with panels that helped it avoid detection by other ship's sensors.[8]

Along with her sisters Willa and Ana, Elsie worked at the BrayTech Futurescape in the Hellas Basin on Mars. Although she primarily worked in weapons research and development, she assisted other BrayTech scientists working on the Sn0-armor project.[2] After discovering Ana was working on a prototype line of scout rifles, Elsie looked over her work and was pleased by the progress her sister was making. She returned the rifle to Ana and told her that only she could finish the design, a sign of confidence in her sister, whom she knew struggled with her sense of identity and belonging in the family.[9]

When their father began to pass away from fatal prion insomnia, a genetic condition introduced to the Bray family bloodline by Clovis I's genetic tampering, Elsie, Willa, and Ana were all opposed to their grandfather's plan to transfer Clovis II's mind into an experimental Exo body. Clovis I believed that this was the path their family was destined to take in order to achieve immortality and become the common ancestors of all future humankind.[10] Their fears were justified, as their father's mind was unable to cope with the transfer or handle the new Exo body, which was torn apart in Clovis II's panic. The three sisters distanced themselves from Clovis I after this, blaming him for their father's disease and horrific death.[11] Elsie also clashed with her grandfather and brother Alton about their handling of the K1 project on Luna and the mysterious artifact discovered there.[12]

The Exo Project

Reluctant Partnership

"Aren't the Vex a perfect demonstration of what could go wrong? Human minds trapped in a totally inhuman context, tormented and mutilated by an unsympathetic alien god. If we want to preserve our minds for eternity, couldn't we end up that way? Aren't we giving up the grace of death? The promise that all suffering will end?"
— Elsie, arguing with her grandfather Clovis I about seeking immortality through the Exo program[13]

Elsie eventually began suffering the same symptoms as her father and discovered that she too was afflicted by what her grandfather had dubbed the "Clovis Curse". She received a message from Clovis I asking her to join him on Europa to aid him in his research, which he described as risky and in need of her expertise with outside-context problems.[14] Clovis I eventually sent her another message, revealing that he knew she was ill as well and explained that his project could save her and Clovis II, whose final memory scan was still on file within the Clovis Bray archives. The message also revealed that Clovis I was dying as well and he pleaded with her to join him so they could all be saved.[11] Elsie agreed to join him in order to limit the damage his experiments caused. She warned him that if he revealed to anyone else in the family that she was dying she would never speak to him again and refuse to let him save her from dying in agony, a prospect which Elsie hoped was still enough to trouble him.[15]

Upon arriving at the Morning Star station in orbit of Europa, Elsie received another message from Clovis explaining that the Transmat system would take her from the station to the surface and provided her with files on the ongoing projects of the Eventide colony. He also promised her that he would not take any brainscans without her express permission, vowing that he would respect her privacy while working on perfecting the Exobodies. Their priority upon her arrival would be reviewing security around a captured Vex platform which Clovis had constructing a gateway, with Elsie being placed in charge of containment and control. However, Clovis I also noted that there were several areas he was keeping off limits and for his personal authority only, warning her that he knew she would try to break into them anyway but would fail.[12]

After the Vex gateway, which they dubbed the Glassway, was finished, Clovis I decided to conduct a expedition through it. Elsie insisted on joining the research team, which would also include her grandfather via a remote operated drone. They emerged onto a statite orbiting a thirteen-billion year old type-0 hypergiant star, an impossibility the Vex had engineered by feeding the star energy to stop it from going supernova. They began exploring the region and gathered samples from the statite and Vex structures. When several Vex platforms took notice of them and fired, Elsie annihilated them with a matter laser. Her grandfather chided her for the excessive response, noting that they did not want to enter into a war with the Vex and that they needed to only scavenge and abduct, which hopefully would only result in a like response from the Vex.[16]

Upon returning to Europa, Elsie began analyzing their samples along with data stolen from the Ishtar Collective regarding the Vex. She discovered that there was risk of contamination by Vex cytostructures that could introduce thoughts and even hallucinations into the minds of those infected. Furthermore, there was the risk of the Vex creating perfect copies of individuals to study and analyze for subsequent annihilation once the Vex learned all they could. This information led to Elsie arguing that utilizing the Vex for Exo research was too large a risk. She and Clovis I frequently fought about the concept of immortality through an artificial shell. Elsie worried that humanity would risk becoming like the Vex in such a state, losing all concept of morality and reality with the loss of death as a possibility, but her grandfather countered that Exobodies would provide the best defense against Vex infiltration of their minds.[13]

Clovis I soon informed Elsie that her latest medical scans showed the prion disease had activated in her spinal fluids and were thus replicating in her brain, giving her around fifteen months left to live without treatments, which could potentially give her five to six years. He begged her to consider making a terminal scan of her mind to upload into an Exobody as he soon planned to do himself, admitting that out of all his grandchildren he considered her the brightest and his favorite.[17] Elsie sent him a message stating that she did not trust him or the Exobodies yet, noting he had made the same promises to her father. She also noted that she was unsure if she would become an Exo even if he proved it to be safe, as she disliked his dream of becoming the Last Universal Common Ancestor of humanity. Elsie also demanded that he cease attempting to make her grandmother Lusia's rhubarb compote recipe during their dinners, noting his desire to have her say it was just like his ex-wife's was pathetic and that she would continue to eat with the crew instead.[18]

As Exobody tests began on their collection of archived minds, Elsie attempted to learn more about how Clovis I was making the advancements on the project. She tried to penetrate his network security measures around one of his personal sites but was unable to breach it.[19] Elsie confronted him directly about why he believed these new Exos would turn out better than their previous attempts and what he used the Vex salvage for, but her grandfather continued to dodge her questions.[20] As her questions went unanswered, Elsie found a new cause for concern after discovering that Vex microstructures had entered into Europa's ice and was spreading rapidly through the planet and colonists. She began focusing on this security concern, and began agreeing with more of Clovis I's ideas to combat their spread through use of Exo soldiers, suggesting that they increase Exo production at their back-up sites. Elsie began considering becoming an Exo to assist in the battle against the Vex herself more directly. Clovis I also questioned her about Dr. Maya Sundaresh and her work on the Vex, but Elsie informed him that no scientist by that name was working with them on Europa.[3]

Conversion

"You’re my grandfather. Aren’t you?"
— Elsie, speaking to Clovis I for the first time after becoming an Exo

Elsie decided that due to the threat of the Vex she needed to transfer her consciousness to an Exobody in order to avoid being compromised by them. She stormed into Clovis I's laboratory to inform him of her decision, but used her Sensorium to crash his archival system so he could not record the conversation. She berated her grandfather for his crimes and threatened turning him over to the Hague to be tried for crimes against humanity while mocking his belief in PFHOR, declaring that is should stand for "Paternal Failure Hides Own Remorse". Elsie finished by declaring that he had underestimated the threat of the Vex and used Clovis II as a test subject for his own quest for immortality. Clovis I agreed to her request and instituted a full brain scan, which flawlessly copied Elsie's mind while fatally poisoning her body. Clovis I kept her human form sedated and unconscious for the last fourteen hours of life. Now in a new Exo body,[21] which was custom made to match her previous body perfectly,[22] Elsie had lost most of her memories in the transfer but began to put her new form through rigorous testing.[21]

Not long after her upload, Elsie received a distress signal from Clovis I, who had been undergoing organ transplant surgery by his medical Frames to combat his own impeding demise. She discovered that the Frames and other automated systems in his lab had been infected by the Vex and were attempting to coerce him into aiding their bid to take over Europa. Using her enhanced Exo speed and strength, Elsie destroyed the corrupted Frames and brought in uninfected ones to finish the surgery and save Clovis I's life. As he awoke, Elsie looked at him in wonder and recognized him as her grandfather, despite her memory loss.[23]

Elsie subsequently began exploring her old memories through sensorium reconstruction using her final brain scan, although she was unaware that Clovis I was withholding specific memories from her that he considered "nonconstructive". She also presided over placing her human body to rest by sending it into Europa's heart beneath the ice. Despite the memory loss, Elsie did recall her determination to combat the Vex infection spreading through Europa and began sending infected colonists into remote SMILE Pods under the guise of "remote relaxation", while she was in fact observing the Vex infection. She accelerated the Vex infection through simulated stages to learn all she could of them before deleting it from the colonists. Clovis I attempted to learn more about her methods, but Elsie was focused on her work and informed him she did not have time to explain it to him.[24]

In addition to the Vex, Elsie assisted Clovis I and Austen-1 in limited time travel experiments meant to recover copies of a mysterious rifle that could act as an anchor for limited time travel. Elsie was scheduled to travel to the year 3025 to recover another copy from a potential future Europa, but discovered that her grandfather had gone instead. She greeted him when he returned a chastised him, noting that he could have been killed, but he brushed off her concern and handed her a copy of the rifle. She noted that there were still an infinite number to retrieve and hoped it was worth it.[25]

Reunions

"Everyone I knew was in those cells. You, and Dad, and Willa, and Ana, and Alton…"
"Oh, my sweet. Of course you dreamt about killing us. Your grandfather made you this way. And he kills everything he touches.
"
— Elsie and her mother Sylvie, after she dreams of the Tower

With the Vex infection being wiped out on Europa, Elsie turned her attention to reconnecting with the rest of the Bray family on Mars. She first visited her siblings, and Willa was impressed by the Exo body, although she noted that the amnesia was unfortunate but that there was always an expected cost when dealing with Clovis. Elsie was confused when Willa stated that at least she had not torn herself apart, and Willa explained that had happened to their father upon his conversion. Looking at Willa, Elsie began to feel feelings of both love and frustration, which she believed was accurate for her elder sister. Elsie joked that maybe upon Clovis I's conversion losing his memories would make him less like himself, but Willa claimed that he would never go through with it if that were the case. She then showed Elsie her current project, SIVA, and claimed it was her own path to immortality and that had Elsie waited a few more years she could have used it instead. Elsie was disturbed by the nanites, which reminded her of the Vex, and observed that it sounded like using it would make them made out of bugs. Willa then told Elsie that they had made their own plans for BrayTech before Elsie lost her memory, but that those plans would never come to fruition if Clovis I never died.[26]

Upon reuniting with Ana, her younger sister was excited to see her and immediately hugged her. Thanks to her enhanced Exo senses Elsie could smell Ana's girlfriend's perfume and shampoo vividly and hugged her back as hard as she could, realizing that it was her first hug as an Exo. Ana reassured her she was not upset about Elsie keeping her disease a secret, and Elsie told her that according to their grandfather she had not known until recently about having it. Her sister questioned if she was really sick and noted that Clovis I could have faked it to get Elsie to test out the Exo conversion process and wondered if she had run the tests herself. Elsie reminded her that she could not remember if she had, causing Ana to apologize about forgetting about the amnesia. Ana then declared that they could now do everything they had always wanted to, including climbing Olympus Mons so that Ana could shove her off the top and watch her stick the landing.[27]

Elsie's visit with Alton did not go as well as her other sibling reunions. Upon reaching out to shake her brother's hand he instead pinched it and was fascinated that she felt pain. She was forced to duck out of the way when he swung a rod at her head to test her pain reaction, causing Alton to wonder why she would avoid it as it could not possibly damage her body and thus should not have a pain signal. Elsie wondered if this was a test and if Alton measured family relations through pain tolerance, becoming frustrated that she could not remember. She questioned Alton about why he had not been invited to Europa like she and their sisters, causing Alton to claim he was more of administrator and troubleshooter than scientist, mentioning his work on K1. Elsie was dubious, and Alton noted that Clovis I must have mentioned his work there. She revealed to him that while their grandfather had told her of the rest of their family he never mentioned Alton once, a fact which disconcerted her and angered her brother.[28]

Elsie's mother Sylvie was horrified upon seeing Elsie as an Exo and blamed Clovis I for her condition. Elsie attempted to reassure her that she would not end up like her father, but found it difficult to find the right words to say as she could only remember her mother as a warm feeling. Unable to calm Sylvie down and stop her from crying, Elsie set herself up in one of the guest bedrooms, noticing throughout the house reminders of her father Clovis II, indicating the deep love Sylvie still had for him even after he was unfaithful and his horrific demise. Upon going to sleep, Elsie dreamed of a tower and murdering everyone she knew, including her family, as she made her way through the prison cells within. Elsie woke up screaming, which caused Sylvie to come and comfort her. Elsie explained her dream, and Sylvie blamed this on Clovis I as well, claiming that he had made her this way and everything he killed all he touched.[29]

Elsie's last visit was to her grandmother Lusia, whom she had difficulty tracking down due to her going back to her maiden name. She eventually found her in Suriname in South America on Earth. During her visit they went to a nearby river to pull in a fishing net, which became stuck underwater. Elsie stripped out of her clothes and dived in to untangle the net, but found it ruined. She instead used her speed and strength to catch a fearsome wolf fish. As she emerged from the water, several locals pointed at her and yelled out, causing Lusia to dismiss them as perverts. Elsie noted that they might be more interested in the fact she was a robot, and was caught off-guard when Lusia argued that she was not and it was a body and a person through basic transhuman hermeneutics. Lusia laughed and wondered if Clovis I had told her Lusia was stupid. With a newfound appreciation for her grandmother's intellect, Elsie asked why she came to Suriname. She told her that it was a nature preserve and home, causing Ellie to question who she was preserving it from. Her grandmother told her she was protecting it from Clovis I and warned her that he always lied. She then noted that Clovis II had been a test run for her conversion, and that she was a test run for Clovis I's, and that he would only do that if he was afraid and that therefore she should be as well.[30]

Confronting Clovis I

"But there’s something worse than the Vex involved, isn’t there? The secret you’ve been keeping from me. The breakthrough that you were promised after your visit to the K1 anomaly."
— Elsie, in her warning to Clovis I that she would destroy the Vex and discover his secrets

As Elsie's visit continued, she spoke with Clovis I and was caught off guard when he asked her about the tower and the dead people she saw in her dreams. Elsie was horrified to realize that he knew about them, which indicated that the other Exos were having the same dream. Clovis I attempted to write it off as from the trauma of conversion, but Elsie berated him for not being concerned about an unknown shared cognitive artifact and the implications it carried. She questioned why he had not warned her and asked what else hew was keeping from her about the Exo creation process.[31] Elsie set off to investigate further, remembering how Clovis had questioned her about Maya Sunderesh before. She tracked down Maya and learned from her that the Maya whom Clovis I had met was in fact a Vex parasite that had infected him on the trip through the Glassway. Maya warned that the Vex would stop at nothing to infest every possible reality and timeline with themselves.[4]

Convinced that the Glassway had to be shutdown and that the Vex were one of the keys behind Clovis I's progress on the Exo project, Elsie turned to Willa for assistance. With her sister's help she gained access to the Jacob Hardy Trust to acquire a topological thought, which was a irreal artifact of the Traveler's Light. With it she intended to craft a paracausal weapon to send through the Glassway and crash every Vex system in 2082 Volantis and force Exo production to cease. As she traveled back to Europa she sent a message to her grandfather explaining why this had to be done to stop the Vex's threat to his lineage, knowing that personal appeals would never convince him. Remembering the fairy tale of the tower from her youth, Elsie also vowed to discover what was behind the new tower that now haunted her dreams and what else was behind the success of the Exo project. She knew that there had to be more than just the Vex involved, suspecting that artifact from K1 was linked to it. Elsie requested that if she did not survive delivering the weapon that he tell Willa and Ana so that they could say proper goodbyes and suggested he pray for grace for his crimes.[4]

Upon arriving at Europa, Elsie boarded Bray Station and sabotaged its defenses before transmatting to the surface with weapons to fight to the Glassway and reach 2082 Volantis. She was contacted by Clovis I, who pleaded with her to stop her plan and that she would be committing genocide not against the Vex, but humanity by denying them immortality as Exos. She ignored his pleading as he continued to note that he could still save her father and sisters and begged her not to make him stop her, as she had always been his favorite. None of his pleadings moved Elsie, who remained committed to ending the threat of the Vex, causing Clovis to activate his ship Hannu II's weapons and strike her down from orbit. Elsie was killed and her paracausal weapon was destroyed by the attack.[32]

Battle of Europa

Invasion

"The Glassway has been compromised. We were ambushed by the Vex. They just came through and… killed them all, Grandfather."
— Elsie, revealing the invasion to Clovis I

Elsie was soon reborn again as an Exo by Clovis I, using the final brainscan he had taken of her that was still stored within the Bray archive. Elsie was told by her grandfather that her previous instance had been compromised by the Vex, making it necessary for it to be destroyed. At this point Clovis I was gravely ill and close to death, preparing for his own conversion to an Exobody.[33] She was subsequently placed in charge of overseeing security at the Glassway and leading the foraging missions to 2082 Volantis to recover materials for Exo production.[34]

Belmon, Transcendent Mind emerging from the Glassway.

While preparing to lead the next foraging mission, Elsie selected Knox-4 to lead the frontline. As the portal opened, Dr. Esteban Ruiz interrupted and reported that Noe-2 had discovered their sensors on the other side of the Gateway were not responding, making them blind to what might come through. Elsie questioned if that had ever happened before and after learning it had not, she ordered the Gateway closed but was informed that only Clovis I could authorize that. Frustrated, Elsie pointed out that Clovis I was on a respirator and likely to die within the next day and that she was now in charge. However, a massive Vex force then emerged from the Glassway, led by a Minotaur. Elsie ordered all forces to open fire, but they quickly became overwhelmed when Belmon, Transcendent Mind appeared. Elsie yelled for Ruiz to close the Glassway, but then saw that the scientist had been killed by the Vex and was forced to order a retreat from the Nexus.[34]

With the Vex breaching their defenses, a full-scale battle broke out across Eventide as Clovis Bray's security forces attempted to halt the invasion. Elsie went to Clovis I's medical suite and ordered Una-8 to wake him up. She explained to him what had happened and that the automated defenses would only hold back the Vex for so long, requesting the authorization codes to begin the evacuation of the colony. Clovis I instead ordered her to activate his Exo A.I. and backup, but Elsie stated that would kill him. Her grandfather noted that his time was not over yet, ignoring Elsie's protests that doing so would take time and that they needed to evacuate now by insisting his legacy be preserved. Elsie agreed to carry out his orders, but as she left the hospital suite she told Clovis I that he would live to regret it.[35]

Evacuation

"Grandfather… you monster."
"A necessary evil, Granddaughter.
"
— Elsie and Clovis I, after he destroys the evacuation ship

After two weeks of fighting, Clovis I still refused to give Elsie permission to evacuate the colony. The majority of Eventide had been slaughtered, with the majority of the survivors taking shelter within the bunker in Creation where Clovis I's Exo A.I. was located. Elsie opposed her grandfather's plans to activate his memory-wiped Exobody and ordered the other survivors to not activate it without her permission. She set off to lead a mission with Noe-2 and Mia-9, and eventually learned that another group of survivors had taken shelter in Bunker E15.[36]

Upon returning to Creation, Elsie discovered Wen-1 had activated Clovis-1 under orders from Clovis I. She demanded to know why they had disobeyed her orders, but her grandfather claimed that he had assumed she died and thus took command. Incensed, Elsie told him that they needed to be evacuating after rescuing the survivors in Bunker E15. Clovis I dismissed this concern and instead insisted that they retake the communications station at Charon's Crossing and use it to send a signal that would lead the Vex off-world and keep the Deep Stone Crypt intact for further Exo production and the preservation of the Bray legacy. Elsie was horrified and angry that Clovis I would sacrifice the rest of humanity and suggested that the Bray legacy should be burned to the ground and planned on activating the Morning Star platform to wipe out the Crypt once evacuation was complete. She then ordered all able-bodied survivors to gear up for a rescue mission, but attempted to stop Clovis-1 when he grabbed a weapon. The Exo insisted that if lives were in danger he needed to help, but Elsie was unsure if she could trust him, but was pleased when Clovis-1 rejected the Clovis A.I.'s order to stay and allowed him to join. The Clovis A.I. warned Elsie that he would protect his legacy, but she proclaimed that was what she would do as well.[36]

Concerned that Clovis I would attempt to go through with his plan without her help, Elsie took a small group to Charon's Crossing to send a distress signal and then jam all other external communications. She brought Clovis-1 with her, as she did not want a copy of her grandfather getting too far from her side. She ordered Wesley-3 to prepare their jammer, but as they waited Clovis-1 began questioning her, noting that Clovis I had called her grandfather and him family. Elsie attempted to dodge the question by claiming that discussing an Identity Upload could cause side effects, but Clovis-1 did not buy that excuse. She then claimed that she had no intention of guiding his life like Clovis I would and that he would not exist if it had been up to her, but after seeing the hurt look on his face Elsie relented and tried to reassure him that he would be better off not knowing the truth. Clovis-1 did not like that answer either and declared that she was deciding for him just like Clovis I, which angered Elsie and caused her to declare she was not like him. However, their argument was interrupted by Wesley, who announced that the entire comms network had been overridden. Elsie realized that her grandfather had tricked her and already had control of the comms. Changing plans, she announced that they would evacuate and that she would then deal with Clovis and the Vex for good.[37]

Reuniting with the group that they sent to Bunker E15, Elsie learned from Reba-3 that the Vex had breached it and slaughtered all the survivors inside. Wracked with guilt over these new deaths and her role in the disaster, Elsie spoke to the remaining survivors and informed them that with the Vex in the tunnels, they would need to cross the surface to the evacuation ship, ordering the Exos to keep their infrared vision on and weapons at the ready. Taking the lead position with Clovis-1, the group was able to get the drop on several groups of Vex before being ambushed themselves. Reba-3 was badly wounded during the fighting, and Elsie knelt next to her to comfort her and promised that she would recover her Memory Bank from the Bray Archive for revival. However, as Reba died, she told Elsie to find Memory Bank E1-815 in Clovis I's office.[38]

As they approached the evacuation vessel, Elsie halted the group upon seeing the Vex surrounding it. As she began issuing orders, all of their comms were overridden by Clovis I, who ordered her not to set foot on the ship. Elsie told her grandfather to piss off, causing him to turn his attention to Clovis-1 and ask what he planned. Elsie tried to signal him not to say anything, but the Exo claimed he would stay if Clovis I told him who he was. Elsie was infuriated and noted they did not have time for this, but Clovis-1 revealed that he had already figured out his identity. Clovis I offered to tell him everything about who he was, but Elsie begged Clovis-1 that the last thing they needed was another Clovis. She and the rest of the survivors were thrilled when Clovis-1 rejected her grandfather, but their relief was short-lived when Clovis I destroyed their evacuation vessel.[39]

Elsie was injured in the explosion and helped to her feet by Clovis-1. They realized that several of their comrades had been killed by the destruction of the ship and she condemned her grandfather as monster. He claimed that this was the only way to ensure his plan to send the Vex off-world was successful before recommending they return to his bunker in Creation to survive. Filled with despair, Elsie whispered that Clovis I had won, but Clovis-1 refused to accept that and suggested they find a way to shut off the Glassway. Elsie pointed out how few of them remained, but he noted that when he was awoken, Clovis I had claimed he was special and had a powerful weapon waiting for him and that he only needed training. She remained skeptical until Clovis-1 reminded her that as Brays they owed it to all the people who died to clean up what Clovis I had done. Elsie nodded in agreement, and the two were joined by all of the other surviving Eventide colonists.[40]

Closing the Glassway

"Clovis. You, me, and every other Exo… we deserve the life we were promised. If this portal falls, and we die, we lose that life. And if we're gone, and the Vex find some other way back, humanity is doomed."
— Elsie, convincing Clovis-43 to not destroy the Glassway

Several hours later, Elsie and the survivors arrived at Clovis I's office, although they took casualties as even the secret tunnel leading to it had been infested by Vex. Setting up in her grandfather's office, which was reinforced and secure from the Vex, Elsie and the others began running Clovis-1 through the Exo Training Protocols and swiftly began preforming so well that he nearly broke the programs. After emerging, Clovis-1 was confidant they would defeat the Vex and Elsie directed him towards a locked weapons cabinet that only he could open. Inside were a sword and pulse rifle, along with the memory bank Reba had told her about. Elsie claimed the rifle and memory bank while Clovis-1 acquired the sword, which Clovis I announced was made for him. He attempted to convince them stopping the Vex would be suicide and that the Cloud Memory Collection system was damaged and would not be able to collect their memories if they died, allowing them to only be revived by their previous imprint. Elsie declared they would all take imprints now and keep a team there to revive those who fell in battle. Although Clovis I warned of rapid memory degradation, he did unlock the armory for them as he did not wish to see them all perish. She informed him that his help now did not earn forgiveness for his earlier actions and that people had died who could not be brought back. Her grandfather did not seek forgiveness, only a promise that the Glassway would not be destroyed. Elsie noted that she had never stated an intent to destroy it, but Clovis I revealed the truth about her previous Exobody and that its memories were on the memory bank she had just recovered. Elsie could just shake her head at the revelation of another atrocity by her grandfather but told him she would not destroy the Glassway, winking at Clovis-1 as she did so.[41]

Elsie and Clovis-1 led their assault team against the Vex, taking heavy casualties. They were able to revive most of those who perished, but the number of reboots caused several memory banks to fry from rapid overuse, losing those stored consciousnesses forever. Each attempt brought the assault team closer to the Glassway, until they finally reached it and found Belmon, Transcendent Mind awaiting them. By that point the Clovis Exo had been rebooted forty-two times and was now Clovis-43. Fighting side-by-side with the support of their remaining team, the two Bray's defeated the Vex, with Clovis-43 dealing the final blow to the Hydra at the cost of his sword. With the Vex defeated, Elsie gave the honor of shutting down the portal to Noe-2, who was the only other remaining survivor who had been present at the initial invasion. However, Elsie advocated keeping the Glassway intact, as its destruction would result in the inability to construct more Exos by losing the link between the Deep Stone Crypt and 2082 Volantis. She argued that all the Exos deserved the life they had been promised by Clovis I and that they needed to remain around to help defend humanity against the Vex. The others agreed, but Clovis-43 hoped they would not regret their decision, a wish that Elsie held as well.[42]

Over the course of the next nine days, Elsie and Clovis-43 led the survivors in reviving as many of their comrades as they could with the remaining radiolaria and supplies harvested from the Glassway. After only enough remained for one more reset, they helped the survivors get offworld. Elsie also regained her memories of her previous life when they added the memory bank from Clovis I's office, remembering her mother, father, sisters, and brother, along with all the pain and horror that her grandfather had caused her. With as many lives saved as possible, Clovis-43 led Elsie back to Creation for a final confrontation with Clovis I. He welcomed them as the saviors of Europa and questioned if they were done cleaning up the colony, aware they intended to shut him down. Elsie was given the honor by Clovis-43, and she swiftly input her code to shutdown the giant Exohead's artificial intelligence. Relieved that Clovis I's reign of terror was at last over, Elsie questioned if it was time for them to leave Europa, but Clovis-43 had one last request before they left.[43]

Clovis-43 requested that Elsie use the last of the radiolaria to reset him and wipe his memory of everything related to Clovis I. Elsie questioned if he really wished to go through with it, believing she finally had a version of her grandfather who was worth knowing. He told her that he would always be the ghost of the person responsible for causing her and so many others pain and that she and he needed to get away from that. Understanding but still upset, Elsie prepared the procedure. Before enacting it, she was given Clovis I's encrypted journal by Clovis-43 so that she could use it to either rebuild the Bray legacy with her siblings or tear it all down. After hugging each other goodbye, Clovis-43 asked to be revived under a different designation than Clovis, picking a nickname that the others had given him during the battle due to the wailing of his sword: Banshee. She laughed at the request and teased him for his liking of it. He then went inside the pod and Elsie activated the reset.[43]

Conflict with Willa

"If I'm gone that means something terrible has happened to me. I've wiped all traces of my research, but Willa has security scouring the facility for me."
— Elsie, in her private journal that she left for the Young Wolf to discover

Elsie subsequently returned to Mars and continued her research for BrayTech. Her work with weapons led her to to discover that the Hephaestus Field Units test nodes used for gauging weapon effectiveness in field conditions could be easily configured for use as a locking mechanism that could be easily hidden in many places and calibrated to only respond to certain weapons.[44] After exchanging information with a friend from her university days in Delhi who now worked at the Ishtar Collective on Venus, Elsie became curious about how she could modify Bray engineered tech with a Vex core.[45] She theorized that the Vex could create a computer so powerful that it could simulate entire altered timelines and wondered if information taken from those timelines could be used to change the original.[46]

This project developed into the Worldline Zero sword, which allowed Elsie to see visions of the future, the survival of her sister Ana into the far future, and another individual who would be smart enough to find things Elsie had hidden away.[47] The concept of the weapon itself also piqued the interest of Willa, much to the horror of Elsie, who was concerned about the potential dangers should others obtain it. The conflict between the sisters quickly escalated, and Elsie was forced to wipe all traces of her research when Willa sent BrayTech security after her. Forced to go into hiding, Elise hid the sword in a storage cache within the Core Terminus and locked it using the Hephaestus test nodes.[48] Elsie spent the next day transferring as much of her tech into the vaults as she could for the individual she saw in her vision and left a message for them asking that they give her apologies to Ana for getting her involved. She also asked that they use her tech to help make things right and reassured them that one day all this would make sense. Two days later Elsie officially vanished from all records of the Golden Age.[48]

A Dark Future

Reunion with Ana

Elsie survived in hiding through the arrival of the Darkness and the Collapse of human civilization. Living through centuries of conflict and war, Elsie eventually allied with the survivors of humanity in The Last City and was reunited with Ana. Elsie also harnessed the power of Stasis after the arrival of the Black Fleet in the system. She also met and befriended Queen Mara Sov of the Awoken. During her time with Mara she urged her to pick a side, even if it was the wrong one.[49] However, the Last City eventually fell to Savathûn, the Witch Queen in an event known as the Bombardment, scattering what remained of humanity. After one last meeting with her sister that did not end well, Elsie went into hiding once more, surviving alone for more than a hundred years.[50]

While going to sleep one night, Elsie heard someone outside of her camp sneaking up the head of her cot. She swiftly jumped up, grabbed her weapon, and let loose a Stasis blast and opened fire, hitting them in the shoulder as they dodged the Stasis. Elsie quickly realized it was Ana when the individual called out her name. She was surprised t see her sister, who looked far worse than they last time they had seen each other, and questioned why her Ghost Jinju was not healing her wounds. Ana admitted she was gone, which did not surprise Elsie, who then questioned what Ana was doing there. Her sister wanted to learn to use Stasis without being corrupted like the other Guardians, but Elsie refused, believing her to be too easily led astray. As she packed her bags and prepared to leave, Ana declared that she wanted to take down Savathûn. Elsie told her that would be suicide and the two argued over if defeating her was possible. She was stunned when Ana produced the Warmind Rasputin's AI chip and asked for help getting him a new vessel. Torn over her instinct to protect Ana personally and by staying away from her, Elsie reluctantly decided to join Ana in taking the chip to the Deep Stone Crypt to create a new Exo body for the Warmind.[50]

Together the two sisters traveled to Europa and located the damaged entrance to the Deep Stone Crypt. Elsie recalled the siege there by Eramis, Kell of Darkness, who had spread the Darkness all across the moon, and cautioned Ana about the potential dangers within. Dropping down the elevator shaft, they landed to discover the Deep Stone Crypt still had power. Elsie was unnerved by Ana's fascination with the Crypt and her positive comments about their grandfather, whom Elsie blamed for the his role in the fall of humanity. After passing through the room housing Clarity Control, they were eventually greeted by the smell of decay in the Exo production room. They discovered the corpse of the Drifter within. Elsie wondered why he had been there and what happened to him, feeling a small bit of pity for the rogue Lightbearer, but Ana stated that he had not deserved another chance. Activating the creation mechanisms, the two waited for Rasputin's body to built. Ana questioned if she ever thought about doing things differently, but Elsie lied that she did not. Her sister noted how much suffering Clovis I had caused and his role in bringing the Darkness, and admitted that she had been to the Crypt before and found the remnants of his journal before when Elsie asked how she knew that. Ana suggested that for all his faults their grandfather loved them and did some good, but Elsie rejected that notion and reminded Ana that she was there and saw all he did. After a long period of silence Rasputin's new body emerged, successfully uploaded and ready to aid them.[51]

Return to the Last City

With Rasputin restored, Elsie and Ana set off for the ruins of the Last City in the hope of finding Ikora Rey. Elsie was distracted by the fate of the Drifter, and wondered if that is what her fate might have been if Ana had not found her. As they explored the ruins, Elsie questioned how close Ana was to the Vanguard, and Ana claimed that they had trusted her. Their discussion turned to their family, and Ana pleaded with Elsie to tell her what they had been like. Elsie did not wish to discuss the past and claimed that she only remembered what Clovis I had wanted her too, but their argument was interrupted when someone cocked a weapon behind them and demanded they leave. They turned and saw Zavala, the former Commander of the Vanguard, now stripped of his Light and missing a leg. Elsie was saddened to see the once-mighty warrior reduced to such a state. She noted Ana's disappointment that Zavala was not happy to see her, and upon questioning him where Ikora was he pointed to the remains of Tower and stated she was buried beneath it.[52]

Zavala told them to leave and began hobbling away on his crutch, but Elsie watched as Ana pleaded with him to help them destroy Savathûn. Elsie believed Zavala to be too broken to aid them and told Ana that they should leave. Ana denounced him as a coward, causing Zavala to stop and explain that he had done all he could to keep the Last City and Ikora safe, but they were too divided when the Last City was assaulted by Savathûn, the Cabal, Eramis, and the Dark Guardians. He lamented that he had never gotten the chance to apologize to her for their arguments. Seeing how much Ana cared about getting Zavala on their side, Elsie intervened and told Zavala that she recalled having many fights with her father, but always made sure to say she loved him before leaving. The one time she had not was before his death and she never got the chance again. Reflecting that everyone present had made mistakes, but together they could work to correct them. Zavala surmised she was the fabled Elisabeth Bray and commented that they could have used her aid before. Ana agreed that she should have helped with the Pyramids, but Zavala explained that the fall of the Vanguard had come from Guardians sent to suppress the Black Heart of the Black Garden instead becoming corrupted and spreading Darkness. Elsie reassured him she was here now, and they reintroduced Zavala to Rasputin and requested his help in finding out how to best use him to pair Darkness and the Light against Savathûn. Zavala told them that would not be enough, and even if they defeated Savathûn, they must still deal with her master, the Witch Eris Morn.[53]

They were led by Zavala to the ruins of The Almighty where he now made his home in the hope that Rasputin could find something within the Cabal's files that could aid them. As the Warmind worked they questioned Zavala on what truly happened on the day of the Bombardment, and he explained that Eris had become corrupted by the Darkness through an artifact on Luna and betrayed them all. The Traveler fled during the battle, abandoning humanity to its fate. Rasputin then chimed in, and Elsie was hopeful by what he found: the blueprints for the cage that Dominus Ghaul had used to once entrap the Traveler and steal the Light. Excited, Elsie proposed finding the Traveler and using it to restore the Light to humanity, but was confused by Ana's seeming resistance to the plan. Rasputin revealed that Clovis I had data on the Traveler to track it, but Ana pointed out they would need an army. Elsie wondered why her sister had bothered finding her if she would give up now, causing Ana to agree to the plan. Zavala agreed to help as well and suggested they get the army they needed from Queen Mara Sov of the Awoken.[54]

Hunting the Traveler

The four of them set off on a ship to find Mara at Zavala's last known coordinates for her. After a few days of travel Elsie was visited in her quarters by Ana, who thanked her for her aid so far and for convincing Zavala to join them. Elsie was pleased that she had managed to renew some hope in Zavala, but was disappointed when Ana then requested once more that Elsie teach her how to use Stasis. She insisted that Elsie wielding it was proof that Stasis users were not inherently evil and could control it. Elsie argued that she did not have full control over it and that there was constant temptation while wielding it which she still struggled with and believed that she would never fully master it. Ana insisted that together they could and use it to take back their world as they deserved to, but Elsie claimed that they deserved what happened to them. Her sister was disgusted by this and noted that many people died while Elsie simply sat on the sidelines while using the Darkness as an excuse. As Ana stormed away, Elsie saw Zavala outsider her quarters. He questioned her use of Stasis, but Elsie warned him that she did not need to hear from him about it as well. The former Vanguard commander admitted that he could not judge as he once did and suggested that Elsie consider why Ana was asking to be taught Stasis. Their conversation was interrupted when Ana shouted from the cockpit that they had found Mara's flagship: The Leviathan.[55]

Upon landing aboard The Leviathan they were greeted by Queen Mara and her routine of Awoken, Cabal, and Fallen. As they exchanged greetings, Elsie bowed to the Queen, who smiled and stated she was pleased to see her again. Elsie looked upon Mara's followers and recalled rumors that many Awoken had defected to Eris after the Bombardment and Mara's failed counterattack. When Ana condescendingly expressed surprise that Mara did not have Vex amongst her army as well, Elsie quickly nudged her sister in the ribs for her disrespect and tried to pass the comment off as a joke. Mara noted that the Vex were trapped in the timestream by Eris and then listened to their plan. She was supportive, but her gaze settled on Elsie and questioned her use of Stasis. Elsie admitted to it, but claimed it would be necessary to survive. The Queen reminded her of her advice from long ago to pick a side and asked if Elsie had chosen the right one. She responded that she hoped so since it had brought her by Mara's side once more, and after Zavala expressed support for Elsie, Mara offered her hospitality but declared that Elsie would need to earn trust on the battlefield. Elsie bowed in respect for the decision, but noticed that Ana did not.[49]

Elsie later went to visit Mara's quarters, but stopped short in the hall when she overheard her talking with Zavala. She heard Zavala claim not to fully trust someone and suspect they thirsted for the Darkness. She was initially hurt, but then Zavala stated that if their fears were true he would kill Ana himself, as she had been his friend. Elsie was startled by this and when Ana came up behind her asking what was being said. Elsie attempted to dismiss the conversation and leave with her, but Mara sensed their presence and questioned if they were being spied upon. Ana swiftly claimed that they had just been coming to discuss strategy. Mara warned that Eris was using Darkness to its full potential and powerful beyond anything they had seen. Elsie suggested that they needed to counteract that by using the Light the same way.[49]

Upon locating the Traveler, Elsie was awestruck upon seeing it again. As Mara's forces approached it with the Cage, Elsie and the others were startled when Zavala suddenly collapsed. He began having a conversation with the Traveler, pleading with it to willingly help them by giving humanity a second chance and defeat the Darkness. However, it refused and Zavala warned them that it was going to run again and that they must take it by force. Elsie watched as the Traveler gathered Light in response to the threat, but the Cage successfully enclosed upon the Traveler and harnessed it to The Leviathan. The ship erupted in celebration, but as Elsie looked around to celebrate with Ana she was unable to find her.[49]

The Final Battle of Light and Dark

"It didn't have to be this way. You could have been with me!"
"Ana, she's corrupted you!"
"No… She gave me purpose!
"
— Elsie arguing with Ana after her betrayal

As their army set course for Luna, Elsie eventually confronted Zavala about the conversation she overheard between him and Mara. She questioned why he suspected Ana and he claimed that something was not right about her. Elsie noted that he had been encouraging her to listen to Ana as well, but Zavala claimed he had been attempting to discern if something was wrong with her as well. She called him a bastard for his manipulations and noted that he would still be rotting in the wreckage of The Almighty if it had not been for Ana. She warned him that if anything had to be done about Ana, it would fall on her to do it as her sister. Zavala hoped that if the worst came to pass she would be able to act for all of their sakes.[56]

Upon reaching Luna, Elsie and Ana joined Mara in traveling to the surface as Zavala gathered the Light within himself and Rasputin piloted The Leviathan. As they traveled, Elsie apologized to Ana for costing them their relationship in all the years she spent hiding, claiming she had believed it was the right thing to do. Ana asked for her to save it for later, after the battle was over. As their dropship doors opened they came under instant attack by waves of Thrall. Fighting through them, they soon saw the Scarlet Keep in the distance with Eris drawing power from the Pyramid below the surface and directing an army of Dark Guardians towards them. The battle quickly devolves into chaos, with the trio of Elsie, Ana, and Mara heading for Elsie while Rasputin used his defenses to destroy a swarm of Awoken defectors piloting ships. Elsie watched in awe as Zavala streaked overhead, overcharged with Light, and collided straight into the Scarlet Keep, destroying it in a massive explosion and wounding Savathûn and knocking Eris down. The trio reached Eris as she regained her footing, but Elsie was shocked when she thanked Ana for gathering all her foes into one place. Elsie turned toward her sister and saw her draw a knife to stab Mara. Attempting to stop her, Elsie was frozen in place by Ana's own hidden Stasis powers and was unable to stop her from killing the Awoken Queen.[56]

As Mara fell to the ground dead, Elsie yelled in horror and asked why Ana had done this. Her sister claimed that the Darkness could not thrive until all followers of the Light were dead and that they could go to a world without conflict once that was accomplished. Elsie rejected this and her sister's pleas that they could be a family again, unwilling to side with the Darkness. She readied her own Stasis powers and engaged her sister in battle, remembering her promise to Zavala despite seeing Ana's sadness over her decision. Ana swiftly overpowered her and damaged several of her core components. Falling to the ground, Elsie watched in despair as Mara's army was slaughtered by Eris's forces. Eris stood over Elsie and mocked her, noting that the void she had left in her sister's heart by trying to protect her had been filled by the Darkness. However, Elsie then pointed to the Traveler and noted that Eris had other problems besides her, as it had begun glowing with Light. As Eris directed her army to destroy the Traveler, Elsie was stabbed once more by Ana, but managed to break free of her Stasis hold. Blasting her sister away from her she tried once more to convince Ana she had been corrupted, but recognizing her sister was too far gone and stabbed her. As the life left Ana, Elsie saw what little remained of the sister she loved resurface, and vowed to kill Eris in revenge. She raced towards her foe, but saw the Darkness gathering around the increasing glow of Light from the Traveler which then exploded and bathed everything in its Light before leaving Elsie in darkness.[57]

Trapped in a Loop

"I'm so disoriented. I remember pieces of past attempts, but not every detail. There has to be something I can do to make the refresh easier. Maybe new gear or tech. If my family's legacy has anything to offer, it's technological advancements. When I wake up, I need something familiar to ground me. Something I can carry back with me. It could be small. I need to think ahead. Plan more."
— Elsie, making plans on how to deal with the transition between loops

Elsie awoke from the darkness in the middle of a celebration in the Last City, surrounded by a massive crowd and children. Confused, she fought her way through the crowd, eventually finding Cayde-6 at the heart of it declaring that he had finally killed Taniks, the Scarred in revenge for the murder of Andal Brask. She watched as Zavala noted Taniks had been killed before, but Ikora stepped in and suggested that he let the new Hunter Vanguard enjoy the victory.[57] Elsie eventually discovered she was stuck within a time loop that would send her back to this moment every time she perished. She became determined to use the loop to stop the dark future she lived through from happening again, but kept failed to prevent it again and again. Attempting to warn the inhabitants of the Last City and the Vanguard of the future events resulted in her being branded as insane or another doomsayer who was quickly exiled from the Tower. By the time events occurred that proved she was telling the truth, Eris would have fallen to the Darkness, the Drifter would be lost, and Ana would become corrupted no matter what she did.[58]

On her third or fourth loop, Elsie decided to spend it finding ways to make the transition between the loops easier, as she often forgot details and became confused when it happened. She began seeking out technology that Clovis Bray may have developed to help, as well as items to ground her or possibly take with her through the reset. She theorized that something around the time of Cayde's ascension to Hunter Vanguard was causing the loop to begin there, but was also preventing her from making the changes needed to alter the future. Elsie resolved to stick to the shadows and investigate, learning as much as she could to prepare for future loops and find ways to make the timeline better each iteration.[58]

On the seventh loop, Elsie befriended Ikora Rey, and eventually managed to convince her that she was telling the truth about the dark future and Eris' fall to the Darkness. As they spoke, she despaired about how much longer she could repeat the cycle. Ikora reassured her that she was making a difference, noting that she now had her on her side, and that the path she walked was not as predetermined as Elsie had come to believe. She further observed that Elsie learned a little more each loop and was chipping away to find the core event she could change to prevent the dark future from coming to pass. Although Elsie appreciated Ikora's help, she explained that the Warlock did not understand what it was like to make one mistake that would result in years of pointlessness that she had to see through to the next reset. Ikora expressed faith in Elsie and that she would see her mission through. Reinvigorated, Elsie told her friend that she was ready, and the two departed to confront Eris, hopeful that this would be the last loop. However, they failed and both she and Ikora were killed within that week. Despite another loss and the fact that Ikora would never remember how close they grew, Elise remembered her friend's words and carried them with her as motivation to complete her mission.[59]

As the trauma and endless nature of the time loops wore on, Elsie considered killing Ana before her betrayal several times, but never could go through with it. On several occasions she joined forces with her sister to serve the Darkness, but found herself unable to live with the actions she undertook in those loops and fought back, which resulted in another reset.[60] Elsie's appearances across multiple timelines caught the attention of some within the Last City who could view those timelines, including the Future War Cult, and she became known to them as the "Exo Stranger". They began to research and develop theories about her origins and purpose. Some speculated she was a member of an Exo squad who was continuing her mission from a long-forgotten war, although others dismissed her as a hallucination caused by Vex technology. Many of those who had the rare encounters with her insisted that she had saved their lives and prevented numerous catastrophic events.[61] The Guardian Praedyth, who was trapped within the Vex's Vault of Glass, recorded that he saw her as the one constant throughout multiple realities with varying degrees of importance and moods, but always with a gun.[62]

The Black Garden

Seeking an End to the Black Heart

"This time, I know what to do. The Vanguard has been keeping secrets. I was foolish to take them at face value. Clandestine missions to Mars… and beyond. Realms outside the boundaries of time. The Black Garden they call it. Darkness lives inside, beating, and pulsing. I believe it is the source of our misery. I'll see to its destruction… and I won't have to kill my sister ever again."
— Elsie, hatching her plan for the current time loop

Elsie eventually hatched a plan based on all that she had learned and the technology she had gathered. Thanks to her rifle, which was unstuck in time and could thus be used as an anchor, she was able to travel briefly in time between certain points.[63] With the knowledge that the Black Garden was responsible for corrupting Guardians, she resolved to find a way to destroy it before that occurred, depriving the dark future of one of its primary sources of Darkness. She believed that by doing so it would fundamentally alter the timeline and prevent her from having to kill Ana.[60] At an unknown point in this timeline Elsie encountered Rasputin, who recognized her but did not understand her purpose. He thus asked her how he could imitate her ability to step between timelines so he could achieve his own goals.[64]

Although the Elsie's primary concern was the Black Garden and the Vex, the Hive infesting Earth's moon Luna caught her attention after she accidently transmatted herself to the moon and noticed their presence. She risked several more visits to Luna to observe them, once inadvertently arriving within their tunnels and being forced to fight to the surface, and deduced that although they seemed feral in many aspects they had a keen intelligence and complex intentions. Elsie speculated that the Hive and Vex had common enemies and a connection to the Darkness. This belief was reinforced when a Fireteam of Guardians halted a Hive ritual she had planned to observe, which she learned was in fact ripping the Light away from the Traveler, similar to the Black Garden. After confirming this by traveling back to before the ritual was halted, a new figure caught her interest: a newly risen Guardian and their Ghost who helped halt the ritual and mentioned Venus. Elsie traveled back once more to watch as they discovered the reemergence of the Hive on the Moon outside the Temple of Crota, but noted no indication of Vex presence or activity to warrant the mention of Venus.[65]

Returning to her observations of the Hive, Elsie concluded that the conflicts between the Guardians and Hive indicated the aliens were planning on an invasion of Earth. Deducing that Luna was the Hive's "black heart" and primary breeding ground in the system, Elsie decided that they also needed to be stopped to prevent them from bringing about the same dark future the Vex were working towards. Some time later, Elsie traveled back further to observe the Ghost find the Guardian and resurrect them and their subsequent acquisition of a Jumpship in the Cosmodrome of Old Russia. She became interested in the presence of the Fallen within the region as well, wondering what they sought to find in its broken tech and landscape.[65][66] With her observations complete, Elsie traveled back to when she had first observed the Guardian, only this time allowing them to notice her presence, as she believed them to be interesting and unlikely to fail where others had and wished to recruit them against the Hive, Vex, and Darkness.[65][67]

The Path to the Black Garden

"I don't even have time to explain why I don’t have time to explain."
— Elsie, in a massive understatement to the Guardian and their Ghost[68]

Elsie made contact with the Guardian as they prepared to enter the Temple of Crota and descend into the Chamber of Night to save the Traveler from a Hive ritual. She remarked that they were interesting and had promise and admired their bravery, but commented that there were other threats which existed that they would not believed. Elsie requested that they come find her if they lived and transmitted a set of meeting coordinates within the ruins of the Ishtar Collective on Venus.[69]

Following Elsie's coordinates, the Guardian traveled to the Ishtar Sink on Venus, where they fought through the Vex to reach the meeting coordinates in the Ishtar Academy. Once the Vex within were destroyed, Elsie revealed herself to the Guardian, but deflected their questions about who she was and why she was watching them by noting they had little time and that she could not even explain why she was unable to give more answers. As she received a transmission from an unknown party, she reassured her ally that she would do something. When the Ghost questioned what she was saying, Elsie informed him she was not talking to him and called him "little Light", much to his annoyance. She addressed the Guardian once more and noted they succeeded where many other strong Guardians failed, but was interrupted once more by her mysterious partner and reassured them that she was with the Guardian and their Ghost. She quickly explained that the Vex were the reason she had summoned them, and the Ghost realized that she was not a Guardian. Elsie noted that while she was not reborn in the Light, she believed that working with those who were could do much good while crushing a damaged Vex beneath her boot.[68]

Elsie then informed them of the Black Garden, the birthplace of the Vex, and a powerful entity responsible for keeping the Traveler in a state of catatonia. She explains to them that the only way to heal the Traveler is to destroy the heart in the Black Garden. When they asked for aid in finding the Black Garden, Elsie sadly noted that she had a different path to walk. The Ghost suggested speaking with the Awoken instead, an idea Elsie agreed with, although she noted that they waved between the Light and the Darkness and stated that she believed that they all must choose a side, even if is the wrong one, recalling the words she had spoken to Queen Mara Sov in her original timeline.[49] Upon another transmission from her ally, Elsie drew her weapon and asked how many foes they were facing. Upon hearing their response, she told them to kill their engines, hold position, and avoid being found before teleporting away and leaving the Guardian and their Ghost behind to follow her clues, along with a new nickname for the Ghost despite his irritation.[68]

Elsie gifts the Stranger's Rifle to the Guardian.

After the Guardian destroyed the Black Heart of the Garden, the Tower celebrated this great victory. Elsie traveled to the Tower and met with the Guardian within the hanger, noting that while the Speaker could give his pretty speeches, they both knew that the fight would continue out in the solar system. Handing them her rifle, she warned that there were more terrible things that she had witnessed being born out in the Darkness which drew closer every day. Gazing at the Traveler, she noted that while this was the end of one chapter of the Darkness that threatened humanity, another would begin and that their fight was far from being over. With that cryptic warning, Elsie stepped out of the ledge of hanger, disappearing once more as she teleported away to continue her own mission and fight, hoping that the destruction of the Black Heart had changed the future.[70]

Elsie's hand in these events were of great interest to Lakshmi-2 and the Future War Cult, who began iincreasing their studies of the so-called "Exo Stranger" in response and using her existence to recruit more adherents.[71] Later, the Guardian recovered No Time To Explain, a weapon that the War Cult believed was connected to the Stranger based on its design, but multiple members of the Cult disagreed about its true origins and relationship to the Stranger.[72]

Revelations on Europa

Recruiting Allies

"Please understand. The line between Light and Dark is so very thin. Let's cross it together."
— Elsie, to the Young Wolf

Six years after helping the Guardian destroy the Black Heart, Elsie set up a base camp in Beyond in anticipation of the Black Fleet's arrival and the coming of Stasis. There she met with Eris Morn and the Drifter and recruited the two of them to her cause, although she did not share all of her secrets with them. Upon intercepting a transmission from Variks, the Loyal, Elsie transmatted to his location in Charon's Crossing crossing and stole the Splinter of Darkness he had taken from Eramis and the House of Salvation.[73] Reclaiming the power of Stasis, Elsie taught Eris and the Drifter how to wield Stasis. They used it to ambush a platoon of House Salvation soldiers approaching the Pyramid of Europa. They swiftly slaughtered them, and Eris watched as the Guardian appeared in Beyond right on time.[74]

As Elsie settled into her camp with Eris and the Drifter, they were approached by the Guardian, who was now known as the Young Wolf. She explained that she knew they were confused and seeking an explanation about why she was wielding the Darkness when last they saw each other she had helped them destroy the Black Heart. Elsie informed them that with the Darkness having arrived they needed every tool possible to defeat their foes and save humanity when the Light could not. She believed that they were resilient enough to resist the temptation of the Darkness and encouraged them to take the Splinter of Darkness to the nearby Ziggurat to begin their training. Hoping they would understand, Elise asked them to join her and their allies in crossing the line between Light and Darkness together.[75]

After the Young Wolf slew Phylaks, the Warrior and took her Splinter of Darkness, they returned to Elsie's campsite. She informed them that Eramis had been tempted into coming to Europa by the Darkness and her obsession with forging a new future for the Eliksni made her embrace it so that she could destroy humanity and the Light. Elsie cautioned that the Darkness used people's desires against them and that they thus must be selfless when using it only as a tool. Noting that Eramis would remain a threat until all the Splinters of Darkness she had acquired were taken from the House of Salvation, Elsie encouraged the Young Wolf to look within themselves for the power to master Stasis and claim the power offered at the Ziggurat.[76]

The Young Wolf returned once more after slaying Praksis, the Technocrat and retrieving his Splinter. Elsie overheard the Drifter tell the Young Wolf that he was nervous about her and suspicious of someone else agreeing with him. She told him that no one was forcing him to stay, but he claimed he was just talking. Speaking with the Young Wolf herself, Elsie discussed the nature of the Darkness's manipulations in more depth. Describing it as a parasite that twisted ones desires into becoming what it needed and wanted, she warned that she had seen a future where it triumphed and would not let it happen once more. Elsie did reassure them that within all of them was the ability to resist temptation and control the Darkness so that they would become humanity's salvation.[77]

Once Eramis was defeated Elsie choose to reveal more of the truth to the Young Wolf when they returned with the Kell's Splinter. Knowing that they had drawn upon the power of Stasis without the use of their own Splinter, she informed them that the Darkness inside them had gotten the better of them in her original timeline where Guardians had abandoned the Light for the Darkness. This time however, Elsie saw both the Light and Darkness within them and that gave them strength to fully harness and tame the Darkness within themselves through the Ziggurat.[78] Upon the Young Wolf's return, Elsie commended them on mastering their Darkness and informed them that in her timeline, Eramis' lived and the temptation of the Darkness spread throughout the Sol System, bringing about a new Dark Age. She admitted to having believed those events unavoidable, but now saw a new future was possible if they fought together for it.[79]

The remnants of the House of Salvation attempted to infiltrate the Deep Stone Crypt and crash the Morning Star orbital platform into Europa in revenge for their defeat at the hands of the Young Wolf, who managed to halt their attempts at the cost of the station. The secret of the Darkness's use in Exo creation and production was uncovered as well, and dormant systems across Europa activated in response to these events. As debris rained down on the surface of the moon, Elsie told the Young Wolf that valuable technology remained in the remnants of the station that the survivors of House Salvation were attempting to secure for themselves. She asked them to stop the Fallen and secure the debris for humanity to use.[80] In thanks for all of the Young Wolf's work, Elsie also gifted them another copy of her rifle and explained how it was an anchor for brief bursts of time travel, and that one day they would understand everything.[63]

Unlocking Clovis I's Journal

"Turns out, Clovis's journal is fairly encrypted, and I'm unable to bypass most of it. Probably to keep it away from, well, me."
— Elsie discussing the journal with the Young Wolf

With the Young Wolf now firmly on Elsie's side and in control of Stasis, Elsie revealed her true identity to them. She explained that in order to fully unlock the secrets of the Darkness so they could teach the rest of humanity to safely use it they would need to unlock the secrets left behind in her grandfather Clovis Bray I's journal. She explained to them that he may have claimed to be attempting to save the world through the Darkness, but in fact cared only for his legacy. Handing them the skeleton key used to lock his journal, Elsie tasked them with gathering Darkness energy to power it.[81] As they built up its power, Elsie recommended they finish doing so by eliminating a House Salvation Captain named Weniks in the Bray Exoscience building.[82] With Weniks dead, Elsie directed them to meet her in Bunker E15 to unlock the first part of Clovis I's journal.[83]

Meeting the Young Wolf in the Bunker, Elsie found a picture of herself and Ana as children. She admitted how strange it was that the two of them remained alive, with her wishing she did not remember her past while Ana desperately searched for it and Elsie avoided her. Directing them to unlock the journal, Elsie noted that Clovis was so obsessed with his legacy that he recorded everything, including the darker elements of his actions and the bodies he buried. She derisively accused historians of calling men like her grandfather great while ignoring the atrocities they committed. Admitting that the knowledge of Clovis I being a tyrant was one reason she had kept Ana from learning the truth as Elsie did not believe she was ready to hear it, Elsie claimed that who he was did not matter now and that all they needed was his research. Thanking them for their help, Elsie departed to continue working on finding more entries to the journal.[83] Returning to her camp, Elsie sent them a message apologizing for her abrupt departure, noting that talking about her family made her uncomfortable and that she hoped to reunite with Ana one day. She discovered that the digital copy of the journal contained far more information than the physical copy she found in her original timeline and passed along the Darkness research to the Young Wolf.[84]

Explaining more of the Bray family's past to the Young Wolf, Elsie speculated that Clovis I's journal was encrypted to hide its contents from her. Determined to extract some good from all the suffering he caused she directed her friend to charge up the key once more using Vex radiolarian fluid and Darkness energy to unlock the next portion of the journal.[85] Once it was charged, Elsie requested the Young Wolf meet her in Perdition to unlock the next entry, and upon their arrival she directed them to a nearby console. With the next entry unlocked she made another confession to the Young Wolf, explaining Ana's history with the Bray family and her fall to Darkness in the original timeline. The Guardian and their Ghost were shocked that Elsie had killed her own sister, whom they had befriended a few years prior. Distraught, Elsie admitted to missing her sister and that she did not know she was alive in this timeline in the belief that it would prevent her from falling to the Darkness by never learning her past. However, she now realized that obsession drove people to the Darkness, as it had done to Eris and Eramis, and that she did not want Ana to fall to the Darkness due to her obsession with learning her past and thus must reveal the truth to her. The decryption then finished and Elsie was pleased with the new research that they unlocked while noting there was much left to decipher. She intended that Ana would be with them next time and departed with a promise to contact the Young Wolf when she figured out what to do next.[5]

Sisters United

"You know, Clovis was always problematic. But he used to have some humanity. Before he let the Darkness take it from him."
"Screw him. He can't control us anymore. Let's take this power and use it exactly like he doesn't want us to: for humanity.
"
— Elsie and Ana, solidifying their alliance to use Clovis Bray I's Darkness research in defense of humanity

Upon returning to camp, Elsie sent a message to Ana explaining everything and hoped that her sister would join them and understand.[86] Going through the new data, Elsie learned of sickening experiments done by her grandfather and that he had discovered that traces of the Darkness resided in all life. However, he also found ways to enhance Stasis even though he could not use it. Seeking to find this information, Elsie asked the Young Wolf to charge the key once more.[87]

After they finished, Elsie invited them and Ana to meet her in a lab buried beneath the Asterion Abyss. Reunited with Ana, she explained much of their history and their grandfather's crimes, shocking her sister. Ana was upset that Elsie had avoided her for so long and was confused by the Young Wolf's presence. Elsie explained that they were part of why she had brought her there and had them unlock the next set of journal entries. After it decrypted, Elsie noted it was exactly the information on Stasis they needed, but Ana was disturbed by their use of Darkness despite Elsie's attempt to explain it was just a tool that could be controlled. She tried to explain that it did not end well before, but this slip was noted by Ana and Elsie explained the truth of the other timeline to her. Apologizing for hiding so much from her, Elsie told Ana she now believed that the best thing she could do for her was be in her life now. Ana admitted that she was happy Elsie was alive, but that everything else was too much to handle at the moment and transmatted away as Elsie tried to stop her. The Ghost reassured her that honesty had been the right choice, but Elsie was unsure and departed to look into the new research.[88]

Elsie was soon visited once more by the Young Wolf. Confiding in them that she was concerned she had told Ana too much too quickly, Elsie also realized that they did not have the luxury of time to ease her into these revelations. Worried that this was to be another failed timeline if Ana did not come around, she shook off those doubts by noting all that was now different, including the Young Wolf, and passed along her newest discoveries about Stasis.[89] Seeking to unlock the rest of the journal, Elsie noted that Clovis I had no idea how to use any of the research he generated on Stasis. The last of the data was hidden with Clovis I himself in the giant Exo head A.I. that she and Banshee-44 had deactivated in the Golden Age. She requested that the Young Wolf charge up the key once more and hoped that Ana would join them for a confrontation with their grandfather.[90]

Once the key was charged, Elsie asked the Young Wolf to meet her in Creation, noting she was not looking forward to seeing the giant Exo A.I. of Clovis I again. She was surprised and pleased when Ana joined them, who stated that she felt that after all Elsie had gone through to protect her she must really care. Elsie confirmed that she did and admitted that she was scared of losing her again. Ana reassured her that all she needed to do was be her sister and that they would face whatever truths the future brought together. Elsie decided that Clovis I would be the first truth they faced and had the Young Wolf activate him. Clovis I was pleased to see two of his granddaughters before him and assumed they were there for his research on Stasis. She confirmed they were and that they intended to spread its use to save humanity. Their grandfather was horrified, claiming it was for their legacy only, and Elsie sarcastically noted she was not surprised by this reaction. This infuriated him further, reminding her that she had volunteered to become an Exo before mocking her sisters, father, and mother as ungrateful and weak. Dismissing him as a bastard, Elsie vowed to use his research to save the universe from evil like him, but Clovis I mocked her naivete and reminded her that she would always be a Bray. As Clovis I shut down, Elsie despairingly noted that he used to have some humanity but lost it all to the Darkness. Ana told her to forget him and that they would prove him wrong by saving humanity together. Agreeing with her, Elsie directed the Young Wolf to return to the Ziggurat with what they learned before departing alongside her sister.[91]

After returning to Beyond, Elsie was joined by the Young Wolf. She thanked them for all their aid and helping her reunite with Ana. Vowing that her sister could count on her and that she would guide her on the path to using Stasis safely when she was ready, Elsie also promised to guide any Guardian who wanted aid on that path. Noting the Vanguard only recognized the Light, Elsie decided she would have to do so for the Darkness in order to ensure Guardians did not fall prey to its sinister influence and that they could save the universe together.[92]

Securing Europa

With her alliances with Eris, the Drifter, and the Young Wolf secured and Ana's trust gained, Elsie turned her attention to securing Europa. The greatest threat to the moon was the Glassway, which had been reopened by Eramis in her bid to secure radiolaria for her plans. Elsie asked the Young Wolf to lead strike teams to close the Vex portal and defeat Belmon, Transcendent Mind, which had been reconstructed by the Vex and once more sought to lead an invasion of Europa. As she guided them on their mission, Elsie requested that that not call her Stranger any longer as they now knew her true identity, although she teased the Ghost by calling him Little Light. She also informed them that they could not destroy the Glassway as it was a vital link for the Exo, but did not go into further detail. Elsie also bitterly reflected on how this was yet another of Clovis I's messes that they had to clean up and wished that she had done more to stop him and help his victims. The Ghost reassured her that she was there helping now and that was all that mattered. Once Belmon was destroyed and the Glassway temporarily closed, Elsie thanked the Young Wolf and their allies for their assistance and noted she would call upon them again when the Vex attempted to breach it in the future.[93]

Elsie also sought to secure any technology left by Clovis I that could prove a threat to the remnants of humanity should it fall into the wrong hands. Amongst that technology was the plans for the BT-7707, a portable mass driver which could fire rounds beyond relativistic speeds. Elsie explained that while the weapon was never built in this timeline, Clovis I had stolen the designs for it from another reality that they needed to secure them before any of their foes did.[94] She first had them scour the BrayTech Exoscience facility to for the schematics while explaining that House Salvation could potentially build a weapon capable of firing across the galaxy if they found the plans.[95] Once the plans were secure the Young Wolf calibrated the data so that they could use it to upgrade No Time to Explain. Meeting with them, Elsie was horrified by wondering about what her grandfather had planned on doing with a weapon capable of firing highly-destructive rounds through time and across galaxies. She decided that they would use the data they needed but leave the rest of the information buried so that Clovis I's plans for the weapon would never come to pass.[96]

Elsie continued to research the Darkness and learned of more secrets that Clovis I had hidden away. Informing the Young Wolf that they needed to charge the skeleton key with more energy, she directed them to the Infinite Well and a pocket of Darkness energy that she had recently detected there. The Young Wolf prevented the Vex from claiming the energy for themselves and Elsie told them that the data they sought could be accessed by undergoing one of Clovis I's most difficult Exo training simulations. Once that was completed Elsie congratulated the Young Wolf and sent them to the Ziggurat to commune with the Darkness and unlock more aspects of their Stasis powers.[97]

Personality and Traits

Elsie with her companion.
"Why me? Why am I left alone here? Survivor's guilt doesn't begin to describe my pain. I miss my family. I don't know what family means when I don't even carry the blood to tie us together any longer."
— Elsie[98]

During the Golden Age, Elsie was a brilliant scientist who strongly opposed her grandfather Clovis Bray I's unethical research. However, the loss of her father Clovis Bray II and her own sickness drove her to stand by his side on the Exo Project until she could no longer ignore it.[85]

After becoming caught in the time-loop, Elsie became dedicated to her mission to save Ana and prevent another Collapse by almost any means necessary.[88] She believes that the Guardians must be willing to delve into unknown powers to preserve and save humanity but would never resort to malicious means to meet that goal. Though she understands that the Darkness brought about the Collapse and it is indeed a dangerous force, Elsie believes that the power of Stasis can be used for good, a tool the Guardians can use to protect their home. As such, she is adamant in her belief that the Guardians should go beyond the Light to grant them the strength they need, criticizing the Vanguards policies against such methods. However, she is ever cautious about the dangers of wielding Stasis, stating that the Guardians need to ignore the tempting words of the Darkness.[76]

Despite Elsie's dedication to her mission, she carries much trauma with her from her repeated lives and the crimes of Clovis I. Elsie views her situation as a curse and does not understand why she is the only one who experiences the loop. Her Exo conversion also makes her question her ties to her family and what that even means.[98] However, Elsie will do whatever it takes to protect Ana and prevent her from falling to the Darkness again, although she is often conflicted on the best way to do so. She believed this meant that she had to hide herself and the truth from Ana. With encouragement from the Guardian, Elsie was able to meet her sister, reveal her origins from other timeline and of the mistakes she made in that timeline. She admits that in her timeline she was rather selfish and overprotective of Ana when she became to interested in her past and of the Darkness's power, which ultimately led Ana to give herself to the Darkness.[88] Realizing her mistakes, Elsie now knows she just needs to be there for Ana, something that her sister has come to understand and appreciate. Upon reconciling, Elsie becomes happy to have her sister again.[91]

Quotes

  • "I wasn't talking to you, little Light."
  • "I believe where our paths cross, ground... could break."
  • "It doesn't matter who you were, only what you will become."
  • "Ah yes. The Awoken. Out there, wavering between the Light and the Dark. A side should always be taken, little Light... Even if it's the wrong side."
  • "It's a day for pretty speeches and medals. But we know the real fight takes place out there. There's so much more, Guardian. I've seen terrible things born out in the Darkness. Every moment brings them closer. All ends and beginnings... Our fight is far from over."
  • "This....is what I brought you here to see."

Trivia

  • Elsie was voiced by Lauren Cohan in vanilla Destiny. Beginning in Beyond Light she is voiced by Moira Quirk.
  • Elsie's character model appeared in the original storyline of Destiny. In this version, she was the assistant of Osiris.[99]
    • Interestingly, both have been known to refer to Ghosts as "little light."
  • Elsie's line "I don't even have time to explain why I don't have time to explain" became a meme in the Destiny community as a symbol of the base game's lack of coherent story.
  • Between her first appearance in the original Destiny campaign and her reappearance in Beyond Light, Elsie was physically absent for six years.
  • Elsie is also accompanied by an unusual companion which is similar to a Ghost but is not one, as confirmed by Destiny’s game director Luke Smith.
  • Elsie's body is notably taller and more curvaceous than the standard female Exo model. A dead Exo on Europa claims that these are based on her human form's measurements.

Gallery

List of appearances

References

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