The Columbia Storyline describes the different events surrounding the creation of Columbia to its demise and later fate.
1890-1893: Creation of ColumbiaEdit
Zachary Hale Comstock was formerly known as Booker DeWitt, but after the events of Wounded Knee, Booker attended a baptism conducted by Preacher Witting to ease his horrific memories and wash away his sins at Wounded Knee. He emerged a new man, named Zachary Hale Comstock. After the baptism, Comstock became a preacher. At some point, he claimed to have been visited by an archangel, who showed him a vision of a city in the sky. Zachary said he was told it was his duty to build and uphold the values of this city. Comstock convinced the U.S. Congress to build the city, named Columbia, to uphold Christian and American values and share them with the world.
The Congress agreed to fund the city, believing it could be a showcase of American exceptionalism. Zachary later met Rosalind Lutece, a respected quantum-physicist, who was able to indefinitely suspend an atom in midair — her colleagues referred to the process as "quantum levitation", while Rosalind herself dubbed it the "Lutece Field". The two worked together and created Columbia within the year 1892. The city travelled around the world to showcase American ideals and glory. Comstock — through a faction known as the Founders — became Columbia's leader. He started a new religion expounding some Christian and American values, but which also contained elements of racism, elitism, xenophobia, and Laissez-faire business practices. Segregation was prominent in Columbia, and other religions were persecuted.
Upon further experimentation with the Lutece Field, Rosalind discovered that the quantum atom she was observing was also being observed by someone from another dimension. This person turned out to be a male version of herself, Robert Lutece, and she communicated with him via Morse Code. Rosalind Lutece then created the Trans-Dimensional Machine, a machine able to open passages, called 'Tears', across dimensions. With the creation of the machine, Comstock used it to enhance his status as a "Prophet". Unfortunately, repeated exposure to the machine caused Comstock to age rapidly and his genetic traits to dissipate, rendering him sterile. Viewing another Tear, he discovered that if he did not have an heir, Columbia would fall. Because he could not conceive with his current wife, Lady Comstock, Rosalind proposed that they could recover a child of his from another dimension, and it would be technically the same. Comstock agreed.
With the assistance of Robert, the three discovered Comstock's alternate self in Robert's universe had he remained Booker DeWitt after not taking the baptism, and later had a child. Seeing that Booker was in debt from gambling, Comstock sent Robert to Booker to trade his daughter, Anna DeWitt, in exchange for clearing that debt. Booker agreed and handed Anna over to Robert. Booker immediately regretted his decision and went after her. As Robert, Comstock, and Anna were passing through the Tear back to Columbia, Booker attempted to take his daughter back but failed, severing part of her finger as the Tear closed around it.
Comstock brought Anna into Columbia and renamed her Elizabeth Comstock. He referred to Elizabeth as his "seed" that would one day take the throne of Columbia. Upon viewing another Tear, he saw that Elizabeth was destined to destroy the surface world when she became ruler. In order to compensate for the sudden presence of Elizabeth, Comstock said that his wife had been pregnant for only seven days to give birth to the "Miracle Child". While Lady Comstock initially abided by this claim, she eventually grew tired of complying about the lie.
1893-1902: Columbia's Golden Age and Beginning of the Civil WarEdit
Elizabeth began to reveal a dangerous power: she was able to open windows into other worlds, much like the Trans-Dimensional Machine. Lady Comstock accused Rosalind of having an affair with her husband and birthing Elizabeth, and wanted the girl out of her house. Both issues led Comstock and Rosalind to house Elizabeth in Monument Island, building an observatory and prison for her.
Due to Elizabeth's power and the Trans-Dimensional Machine, Tears, momentary rips in the space-time continuum, began to appear all around the city. People observed these phenomena and a few even learned how to exploit them.
Jeremiah Fink, the founder and owner of Fink Manufacturing, built an industrial empire using these Tears. On August 12, 1894, he learned through his brother, Albert, of the phenomena occurring throughout Columbia. Fink was skeptical of the Tears' value, until seeing Albert make a fortune from selling new music emitted from them. Fink realized the profits which he could make, and used the opportunity to steal advanced technology he observed through the Tears, advancing and expanding his company's products, including the Vigors.
Comstock saw a vision through a Tear that Booker DeWitt one day would somehow enter Columbia and come for Elizabeth. Fearful of his heir being lost to his alternate self, he created a "prophecy" for the city. Comstock declared that a False Shepherd would one day come for Elizabeth to lead her astray from her destiny in becoming Columbia's leader and destroying the Sodom Below. Comstock noticed Booker's right hand was carved with the initials A.D. and hence signified this as the mark of the False Shepherd. He also had Fink build the Songbird, a hulking, flying monster designed to keep Elizabeth safe and inside Columbia.
In 1895, Lady Comstock became aware of Elizabeth's origins and confronted her husband on the matter. Panicking, he killed his wife to stop the secret from being revealed. Lady Comstock's servant, Daisy Fitzroy, overheard the struggle and went to see the commotion only to find the dead body. Comstock quickly blamed his wife's murder on Daisy, and she fled the scene to hide in Finkton. There she formed the Vox Populi, a protest group against the Founders, and demanded rights for people of color, the foreign-born, and laborers.
In 1900, Columbia was finally sent around the world to showcase American and Christian values. Columbia became involved in an international incident in the Boxer Rebellion, opening fire on Chinese citizens in Beijing, revealing to the world the flying city was heavily armed. On July 6, 1902, the U.S. government formally disavowed Columbia's involvement in the Boxer Rebellion and recalled the city. Outraged, Comstock declared Columbia's secession from the United States, and the city vanished into the clouds. This date became a city-wide holiday celebrating their independence.
1902-1911: Civil War of ColumbiaEdit
As the years passed, Rosalind and Robert continued their research and observation of Elizabeth. As the girl grew older, she found interest in reading and learning skills such as lock picking, singing, painting, and more. She remained friends with the Songbird and had a content life. Elizabeth began using her special abilities more as they grew in power, and was able to view other worlds, taking an interest in the city of Paris. In time, Elizabeth came to resent her captivity and Songbird, and began yearning for freedom. Her first menstruation gave her an increase in power. This led to the Luteces to create the Siphon, a device which leeched Elizabeth's quantum energy, preventing her from using her powers to their full potential. Rosalind hypothesized the sever of Elizabeth's pinky as an infant gave her the ability to open Tears, as her body was in two realities at once.
Sometime after Lady Comstock's murder, Daisy Fitzroy was captured by the Police. She was studied by Dr. Francis Pinchot, who gave her intelligence tests, revealing a high-level genius. Dr. Pinchot formed a relationship with Daisy, and before her scheduled lobotomy, broke her free. In return, Daisy killed the doctor and made her escape. Daisy, with a full-fledged hatred for the Founders, sparked her protest group into a militant force against the city, and her tactics became more brutal in the ensuing revolt against Columbia and the Founders.
In 1909, Rosalind and Robert were observing a Tear which revealed the truth about Comstock's prophecy. In time, Elizabeth would abide by her father's beliefs and become the city's ruler, after which she would lead Columbia to wage war with the world below. The Twins did not want to see this happen, so they sought to change it. Robert proposed that they send Elizabeth back into his reality with her original father. Comstock got word of this and had Fink tamper with their Lutece Device. When the Luteces attempted to use the sabotaged machine it malfunctioned. While it did not kill them, it spread the Luteces across all realities, making them omnipotent. Gaining newfound knowledge and abilities, the Luteces arranged to bring Elizabeth's original father to Rosalind's reality where Columbia is.
1912-1984: The Fall of Columbia (BioShock Infinite)Edit
- Main article: BioShock Infinite
- Main article: The Lighthouse (BioShock Infinite)
In 1912, the Lutece twins contacted Booker by opening a Tear into his private investigation office, and convinced him to assist them. They repeated this over and over. Each time Booker entered the Tear, he suffered side-effects as Robert had — when entering another reality, a person's former traits and memory collided with those from the new one. The brain hemorrhages and false memories were created to compensate for the contradictions. Booker's mind confused the previous taking of his daughter with a new memory where he must retrieve a girl from the city of Columbia. The Luteces used this confusion, and demanded that he bring Elizabeth back, as a way to erase his debt.
Each of a previous one-hundred and twenty two times re-entering Columbia, Booker had failed and died. The Luteces kept returning to take Booker to the city again. On this latest attempt, Booker is once again taken to a lighthouse on an island off the coast of Maine on July 6, 1912. Booker is rowed there by the Twins, enters the lighthouse (once again unaware of Columbia's existence), and is transported into the sky via shuttle rocket.
- Main article: Town Center
Booker arrives in Columbia's Welcome Center, a church dedicated to the Founders and Father Comstock. He is then forcibly baptized in order to enter the city. Nearly drowning, Booker has a dream of a futuristic New York City being destroyed by Columbia. He awakens in the Garden of New Eden, and finally enters the streets of Columbia in New Eden Square. Booker happens to arrive in Columbia on July 6, 1912, the anniversary of the city's secession from the United States, and as he makes his way to Monument Island, the Luteces contact him, telling him not to pick "77" at the city Raffle and bring attention to himself.
While Booker heads for the raffle contest, he notices the brand on his hand is similar to that featured on a propaganda poster. Arriving at the Raffle Park, he draws a baseball numbered 77. The Raffle's host, Jeremiah Fink, announces Booker as the winner and offers as prize a first throw at an interracial couple. Before Booker can do anything, Fink and the Columbian Police spot the A.D. carved on his hand. This brand is known as the mark of the False Shepherd, who is prophesied to take Elizabeth away from Columbia. Booker fights his way to meet up with the Luteces at The Blue Ribbon Restaurant, and they offer him a Shield Infusion to help on his journey. Booker moves across the city's rooftops as enforcers from Columbia's army attempt to stop him. He finds a gondola station to Monument Island, but it is out of order. Using a Sky-Hook to travel on the Sky-Lines and Freight Hooks, Booker manages to reach the gateway to Monument Island. He is then contacted by Zachary Comstock, who appears before him via teleprompter from his zeppelin. Comstock threatens and taunts Booker, who then experiences a brain hemorrhage and bleeds profusely. Booker uses Comstock's zeppelin to arrive at the gates of Monument Island, barely escaping after a Founder worshipper sets the craft ablaze.
- Main article: Monument Island
Booker enters Monument Tower, which is deserted. He comes across various observational videos, photographs, vitals, and charts about Elizabeth, and realizes that the girl has been observed her entire life. He also finds the tower's Siphon, which leeches Elizabeth of her power to keep her from escaping.
Booker discovers that Elizabeth's apartment has many one-way mirrors, and that she has no idea she's being watched. He first finds her in the dressing room, showing her admiration for Paris. He follows her to the dining room, where she's observing her painting of the Eiffel Tower. Elizabeth then opens a Tear to Paris in the 1980's, but is forced to hastily close it as a firetruck suddenly approaches. Booker, in shock, follows her to the library.
Booker accidentally falls through the ceiling into Elizabeth's library. While initially scared and defensive, the girl is relieved by the presence of another person and expresses her desire to leave. Elizabeth becomes fearful as a whistling signal blows and the Songbird arrives at the tower. She and Booker escape from Monument Island, barely evading Songbird who destroys most of the building, as the two fall onto the shores of Battleship Bay.
- Main article: Soldier's Field
Awakening on the beach of Battleship Bay, Columbia's leisure and entertainment area, Booker finds Elizabeth enjoying her newfound freedom. He soon discovers the existence of The First Lady, a zeppelin which could take them out of Columbia. Booker tells Elizabeth of his plan to take her to Paris (in reality intending to take her to New York and clear his debt), and they both head for the First Lady's Aerodrome. On the way there, they are ambushed by Comstock's minions. Booker kills the attackers and explains to a distraught Elizabeth the severity of the situation they are in and that he will need to kill if they want to leave Columbia.
Reaching Soldier's Field, Columbia's amusement park and youth education center, they discover they need the Shock Jockey Vigor to power the gondola to the First Lady's Aerodrome. The duo head to the Hall of Heroes, a museum dedicated to Columbia and Comstock's history and past exploits, where the Vigor is said to be located. Taking the elevator to the Hall of Heroes, Elizabeth opens a Tear and explains to Booker that they are windows to other worlds. They narrowly avoid an attack by Songbird through the Tear, causing Booker to deem them dangerous and advising against their use.
Approaching the Hall, Booker discovers that an old comrade from the Wounded Knee Massacre, Cornelius Slate, has joined the Vox Populi and taken refuge inside the Hall of Heroes. Booker and Elizabeth enter the Hall and are contacted by Slate. He explains that Comstock had apparently lied about his involvement at Wounded Knee and leading the cavalry, and that for attempting to expose this lie, he was stripped of his title. Slate forces Booker and Elizabeth to go through the museum exhibits of Wounded Knee and the Boxer Rebellion to fight his troops before meeting him. After going through those two displays, they are finally allowed access into the First Lady's Memorial. The exhibit covers the death of Lady Comstock, and there Elizabeth discovers to her horror that she is the daughter of Comstock and that he intends to make her follow in his footsteps, becoming Columbia's leader.
Nearing Slate, Booker now advises Elizabeth to use her Tear-manipulation to assist him in combat. After fighting off Slate's men, Booker neutralizes Slate and recovers the bottle of Shock Jockey from him. Returning to the gondola, Booker uses the Vigor to power it, and the two board The First Lady. Elizabeth becomes excited about her freedom, seeing the world and Paris, but she notices that Booker is directing the zeppelin towards New York. Booker reveals his true intentions and that he needs to bring her to New York to a man who can clear his debt. Elizabeth fakely breaks down in tears and as Booker comforts her, she knocks him out with a wrench.
- Main article: Finkton
Booker awakens to find Elizabeth gone and The First Lady taken over by the Vox Populi and their leader, Daisy Fitzroy. Daisy tells Booker that in order for him to reclaim The First Lady, he must first assist the Vox. In order to do this, he needs to find the gunsmith, Chen Lin, to resupply his weapons for the Vox Populi's cause. Booker finds Elizabeth and pursues her, but is attacked and thrown off the city by a Handyman. He is saved by a zeppelin summoned by Elizabeth, who decides to help Booker despite not trusting him, knowing he is her only means of reaching Paris. Booker lets her in on how they can reclaim The First Lady, and they set out to fulfill Daisy Fitzroy's demands.
Booker and Elizabeth journey into Finkton Proper, the industrial and labor district of Columbia. Booker is contacted by Jeremiah Fink to work for him as his head security officer. Booker declines, and later learns from Chen Lin's wife that he was taken by the Founders into the Good Time Club for interrogation. Entering the club, Booker and Elizabeth find Chen Lin dead from extreme torture. However, the Lutece Twins appear to reveal a Tear to a universe in which Chen Lin remains alive and able to help their cause, prompting Elizabeth to bring them into a reality where Chen Lin was never killed.
Upon entering this new realm, they discover an automatic difference with reality. Namely, those who were killed in the previous universe have been brought back in a super-position in which they recall being both dead and alive at once. One of these is Chen Lin, who was spared because his wife in this universe is a white woman with connections to the Finkton Police. Upon realizing that Chen's tools for making the guns are confiscated and stashed in a nearby police station, Booker and Elizabeth head to Shantytown, Columbia's housing district for the poor, to retrieve them. However, there are far too many tools for them to carry all at once. Coincidentally, a Tear opens nearby where the tools aren't at the police station. Elizabeth, once again, brings her and Booker to a new reality of Columbia where the tools are gone and back at Chen Lin's shop.
The two witness how drastic the change in this Columbia truly is. Apparently, in this universe, Elizabeth was taken away from her tower before Booker could reach her. He thus reunited with Cornelius Slate and the two died burning the Hall of Heroes down, furthering the cause of the Vox as martyrs. This flux of information and new memories causes Booker to experience the same super-position of being both dead and alive. Not only that, but when he and Elizabeth return to the gunsmith shop, they find Chen Lin and his wife lying dead on the floor. Now reinforced by the gunsmith's weapons, the Vox begin a massive, violent uprising across Columbia, massacring soldiers and supporters of the Founders, including many innocents, and lay siege to Finkton's Factory. As Booker and Elizabeth head to reclaim The First Lady, they are noticed by Daisy, who wishes to keep Booker as a martyr to inspire her cause. Daisy executes Jeremiah Fink and turns her army on Booker and Elizabeth. They defeat her troops, but Elizabeth is forced to kill Daisy when she threatens to murder Fink's son. This heavily traumatizes Elizabeth, who retreats to The First Lady and changes her outfit. Booker takes The First Lady's controls, but before he and Elizabeth can leave Columbia, the Songbird reappears to crash-land the airship.
- Main article: Emporia
The two crash-land in Emporia, Columbia's financial and commercial center, where the Lutece Twins inform them that the only way to stop Songbird is controlling him through a specialized flute and playing key notes. Booker and Elizabeth then spot Comstock House, the Founders' primary base of operations, and aim there. The Vox has now taken control over Emporia and most of Columbia, slaughtering any survivors and burning the city down. After once again evading Songbird in the district's Grand Central Depot, Booker and Elizabeth reach the entrance to Comstock House, but are told that they need a handprint key by the gate's automaton, which confuses Elizabeth for Lady Comstock, giving her the idea to take Lady Comstock's hand from her air-tight coffin in the nearby cemetery. However, upon trying to retrieve her hand, Comstock releases a small Siphon inside Lady Comstock's tomb to leech Elizabeth of her power and uses it to transform his wife's corpse into the Siren, a spectral form of Lady Comstock, both dead and alive, with the ability to revive the dead through manipulation of Tears. Lady Comstock is hellbent on revenging the lies Comstock had spread about her, Elizabeth, and the Luteces, and the Twins reveal that in order to turn the situation to their advantage, Booker and Elizabeth need to uncover the truth.
Exploring Emporia, the duo uncover the conspiracy regarding Comstock. Through the Tears, they learn the truth: Comstock's sterility from exposure to the Tear device, his adoption of Elizabeth from another universe, and his plot to kill Lady Comstock and the Luteces. Elizabeth reveals the whole truth to Lady Comstock after Booker subdues her. While in disbelief, Lady Comstock forgives Elizabeth and assists the pair by opening the gate to Comstock House.
- Main article: Comstock House
As Booker raises the bridge to Comstock House, Songbird suddenly appears. Before the beast can kill Booker, Elizabeth intervenes and begs him to take her back with him. Songbird agrees and flies off with Elizabeth in hand. Booker chases after the two, only to find himself suddenly in a snow-covered Columbia. He then enters Comstock House after hearing Elizabeth's cries for help, all the while encountering disturbing sentries monitoring the mansion called the Boys of Silence. Through discovering certain Tears, Booker learns it has been at least six months since he last saw Elizabeth, who has been tortured and indoctrinated to uphold Comstock's beliefs, becoming a proponent for Columbia. He finds Elizabeth and realizes he has traveled forward 72 years, Elizabeth having aged considerably and upheld her father's prophecy to use Columbia to destroy New York City in 1984 — the very same dream Booker experienced when first entering the city. The old Elizabeth explains that it was her loss of hope that broke her, and now regrets what she has become. Knowing her past self can stop the cycle by achieving her full potential, Elizabeth brings Booker forward in time to avoid Songbird and gives him instructions on how to control the creature. She then sends Booker back to 1912 to rescue her younger self.
Returning to Comstock House, Booker enters an operating room where he finds Comstock and his doctors torturing Elizabeth and deactivates the generators to the Siphon containing her powers. With the machine now offline, Elizabeth opens a Tear to a field being ravaged by a devastating tornado, killing the doctors. After Booker frees her, the two resolve to finally confront and kill Comstock. Journeying to the roof, they fight their way through the remainders of Comstock's army and board a gunship to dock at the hangar bay of Comstock's personal war zeppelin, the Hand of the Prophet.
The Hand of the ProphetEdit
- Main article: Hand of the Prophet
After navigating through the levels of the zeppelin, battling both forces of the Founders and the Vox Populi, Booker and Elizabeth find Comstock in his cabin. There, Comstock attempts to regain Elizabeth's trust by weakening her faith in Booker, grabbing her and demanding that Booker tells her the truth about her lost finger. In a fit of rage, Booker grabs Comstock by the neck and smashes his head against a baptismal font multiple times before submerging his face in the water, drowning him. Elizabeth is concerned about Comstock's words, and she and Booker resolve to fly the ship to Monument Island to destroy the Siphon and learn the whole truth.
Alas, the Vox Populi are now unleashing an all-out assault on the Hand of the Prophet. At that moment, Elizabeth works out the meaning of her older self's letter. Tearing a Whistler from inside a statue, she plays the musical notes C-A-G-E, bringing Songbird under her control. The Vox Populi begin an assault on the flagship's main generator, and Songbird helps defend the surface deck from the Vox forces.
Once the attacking Vox army has been eradicated, Elizabeth hands the Whistler to Booker, who uses it to command Songbird to destroy what remains of Monument Island's statue, and with it, the Siphon inside. The massive energy feedback that results from the tower's destruction disables the Whistler, thus making Booker lose control of the bird. Just as Songbird is charging at Booker, Elizabeth opens a Tear transporting the three of them to Rapture.
Sea of DoorsEdit
- Main article: Sea of Doors
Elizabeth brings Booker and herself to the inside of the underwater city's Welcome Center, but leaves Songbird outside the building. She comforts the creature in his final moments as he is crushed under the extreme pressure of the ocean and sinks to the seafloor below. Emerging on the surface by way of Bathysphere, Elizabeth is now able to see all the realities and has become virtually omniscient. She reveals to Booker that Columbia and Rapture are connected via key elements, and are the same city across different realities. She leads Booker to a realm between realities, each displayed as one of many lighthouses and bridges that represent the "beginning" of Booker's journey. Elizabeth explains that the worlds behind each door are similar and different in specific ways, all somehow connected. During this traversing of realities, Elizabeth also reveals the truth of Booker's memory of events being flawed — that he never agreed to retrieve her from Columbia in exchange for eliminating his debt. And that rather, Booker gave his infant daughter, Anna, to Robert Lutece for that same purpose. Booker then realizes that Elizabeth is Anna, and the portal severing her finger was what gave her the power to create Tears in time and space, when her body became a part of two separate dimensions.
After re-experiencing these events, Booker puts the blame on Comstock, and thinks that he and Elizabeth can go on with their lives since Comstock is no more. This isn't the case, though, since Comstock remains alive in many more universes. The one way to be rid of Comstock permanently is to go to the point where he first came to be. Booker is transported to one final location: the riverside of his baptism. Here, different versions of Anna — Elizabeth — reveal the truth to Booker: he and Comstock are, in fact, the same person from different realities, similar to Robert and Rosalind. In Rosalind's reality Booker was baptized after the Battle at Wounded Knee, renamed Zachary Hale Comstock, and never sired a child before suffering from sterility. In Robert's reality, Booker had refused the baptism at the last second therefore keeping his original name, got married, and fathered Anna. Learning this, Booker allows all the Annas — Elizabeths — to drown him before he can accept or reject the baptism, preventing his choice being made, thus stopping Comstock from ever existing. With the elimination of Comstock across all timelines, Columbia's existence is erased, and all the events that occurred over the past twenty years vanish along with it. One by one, the alternate versions of Anna — Elizabeth — begin to disappear until only the original remains, thus ending the cycle.
1949-1958: Escaping to RaptureEdit
After Elizabeth drowned Booker DeWitt at the pivotal baptism, a majority of possible versions of Comstock who created Columbia and stole Anna were erased from existence. However, one Elizabeth did not disappear with the other versions of herself after the drowning. Through her newfound power of omnipresence, and using the Sea of Doors, she discovered there were still universes containing a Comstock who had taken an Anna not of his own. Elizabeth took purpose in pursuing and eliminating every last version of Comstock, and she entered an alternate Columbia as Comstock was again stealing Anna from Booker. Elizabeth argued with Comstock to let go, claiming she wasn't his child, and the infant was caught in the middle, resulting in her decapitation by the closing Tear, rather than just severing her pinky.
Riddled with guilt and remorse for causing the girl's death, Comstock reverted to his original identity as Booker DeWitt. Branding his right hand with Anna's initials, DeWitt wished to leave his world and erase all of his memories. Robert and Rosalind Lutece offered DeWitt the opportunity to enter into another universe, in a different city, where he could forget his past. DeWitt was then brought to the city of Rapture in 1949. He became a private investigator, and built a reputation among alcohol retailers, high class, and working class clients. Like his alternate versions, DeWitt was a gambler, and he was present in the year 1958 to experience the significant events that would lead to Rapture's fall. They involved gangster Frank Fontaine, owner of Fontaine Futuristics, who had previously created the miracle drug ADAM, developed by Dr. Brigid Tenenbaum and the first line of Plasmids and Tonics by Dr. Yi Suchong. Fontaine had built a business empire after he devised an illegal smuggling ring to bring contraband goods from the surface into Rapture, which eventually became profitable enough to supply money for numerous other ventures.
Fontaine built Fontaine's Home for the Poor and the Little Sister's Orphanage as a front for his business, transforming little girls into generators of ADAM. When his smuggling ring was compromised by Andrew Ryan he faked his own death in a shootout with Ryan's men. Ryan then proceeded to seize Fontaine Futuristics for his own use and closed Fontaine's other businesses. Ryan sank Fontaine's Department Store, filled with Fontaine's former employees, to the ocean seabed. These events lead to the closure of the Little Sister's Orphanage. One of the displaced orphans was a girl named Sally, who wandered into Booker DeWitt's office. By making the mistake of feeding her, DeWitt became her accidental adopted father. He took Sally to places she didn't belong, including the gambling tables at Sir Prize. While DeWitt was winning at the tables, Sally suddenly disappeared. Sullivan, an acquaintance of DeWitt, later reported to him they had found her corpse floating in the docks. In reality, she had been kidnapped and taken to the Little Wonders Educational Facility to be transformed into a Little Sister.
Despite DeWitt abducting and violently interrogating Suchong for hours, he gave up the search and believed Sally to be dead. It was around this time Elizabeth found and entered Rapture looking for Comstock. Her presence in Rapture caused more Tears in the space-time continuum, linking Rapture to Columbia. Suchong took note of this, and sent scouts all over the city to find more Tears. He discovered Elizabeth was causing them and wished to find her. The Tears connecting this reality with Columbia also allowed Jeremiah Fink to observe and steal the idea of Suchong's Plasmids. Suchong in turn used the Tear to plagiarize Fink's antioxidize idea to make his own Plasmids orally consumable. Elizabeth found DeWitt's location and was set on murdering him, but decided that first he should remember his crime as punishment. Discovering his adoption of Sally and her subsequent "disappearance", Elizabeth investigated around Rapture and learned that local artist Sander Cohen had been trafficking Little Sisters around Rapture for his own purposes. Elizabeth planned on hiring DeWitt to follow this trail, find Sally, and awaken his dormant memories of killing Anna, before exacting her revenge. On the eve of the fall of Rapture, December 31, 1958, Elizabeth went to find Booker DeWitt.
1958-1960: Fall of Rapture (Burial at Sea)Edit
- Main article: Burial at Sea
- Main article: Market Street
On December 31, 1958, DeWitt briefly recalls the day he accidentally killed Anna while sleeping right before Elizabeth enters his office. When Booker asks what her request is, she replies that she wants to find Sally, showing a picture of her to DeWitt, who tells her that the girl is dead. Elizabeth reveals that Sally is alive somewhere in Rapture, and correctly predicts that Booker will do this job for free. He obliges, and goes out into Market Street to follow her lead on Sally.
When traversing Market Street, Booker asks Elizabeth of her intentions for finding Sally, to which Elizabeth responds that matter is private, but needs DeWitt's talents to locate the girl. Rapture is alive on New Year's Eve of 1958. As opposed to Columbia's ideology, rational conversations are held, people of color are among society's great minds, biracial and homosexual relationships are present in the public eye, and science, art, and industry rule all.
- Main article: High Street
Exiting the elevator to High Street, Elizabeth takes Booker to famed Rapture artist, and her lead in finding Sally, Sander Cohen. However, the two are denied access into his private club because they lack invitation masks. Elizabeth discovers that the club is sponsored by nearby local businesses and assumes that one of them must have a mask.
Exploring High Street, Booker and Elizabeth search for the masks in Rapture Records, The Gallery of the Artist's Struggle, and The Golden Rule. In each store, Elizabeth distracts the owner while Booker sneaks in the back looking for the mask. Eventually finding one, they return and gain access to Cohen's Club, but not before Booker questions Elizabeth about her past and real intentions, to which she gives a rather mysterious and evasive answer.
Booker and Elizabeth enter Sander Cohen's Garden of the Muses, where the insane artist is working on his current masterpiece. The two ask him about the whereabouts of Sally; Cohen cryptically warns Booker about Elizabeth, and reveals he knows where Sally is, but in exchange, Booker and Elizabeth have to dance to inspire him on his painting. Booker and Elizabeth begin a slow, uncomfortable waltz, but their dance is cut short when Cohen finds error in them and has them electrocuted into unconsciousness.
Fontaine's Department StoreEdit
- Main article: Fontaine's Department Store
Booker and Elizabeth awaken, both inside Cohen's Bathysphere. Cohen takes the Bathysphere to Fontaine's sunken Department Store, where he claims Sally is. He informs Booker and Elizabeth through the radio that Sally is somewhere in the Housewares Department — but it is located on a separate building of the Department Store. When arriving at the store, the two are soon attacked by the Splicers imprisoned there and witness one of them possessing the Old Man Winter Plasmid. Booker and Elizabeth make their way to the tram station, during which Elizabeth asks Booker when he arrived to Rapture. Booker initially confuses the year he arrived from 1948 to 1951, and excuses his confusion from his loss and blurring of time before suffering a nosebleed, a symptom of those who have entered another dimension resulting in hemorrhages. Booker and Elizabeth arrive at the tram station, only to find that it has a gap in the floors with a gush of water bridging across it. They deduce that the Splicer's Plasmid from earlier could freeze the water and resolve to find him.
Booker and Elizabeth enter the Department's ice rink where the Splicer has taken refuge, but discover that the Plasmid supply has been depleted. Elizabeth opens a Tear (passing it off as a new "Plasmid" to Booker) to obtain a full bottle of Old Man Winter, and they return to freeze the water bridge, making a path to the tram. Booker reveals to Elizabeth that Sally isn't his actual daughter, but an abandoned orphan from Fontaine's shutdown orphanage. She came to Booker hungry, he fed her, and she stayed, resulting in Booker becoming her unofficial adopted father. He admits that he took Sally to Sir Prize, gambled, and was winning at the tables when he lost her. Elizabeth reassures him that her only prerogative with Sally is to reunite the two.
Booker and Elizabeth arrive at the Housewares building, and they see Sally being chased off into the ventilation system. Elizabeth uncovers schematics that map out that the ventilation systems in Housewares all lead to one main vent. She deduces they can get Sally out by closing off all but the central exhaust vent in the department, and by turning the heat up. The duo close off all the other vents and turn on the heat, forcing Sally out the main vent in the Toy Store. Booker grabs Sally to pull her out, only to discover she has been turned into a Little Sister. Sally calls out to her Big Daddy, and Booker is forced to battle it. After defeating the Bouncer, Booker once again tries to pull the girl from the vent. Suddenly, he relives his forgotten memories and remembers his past as Zachary Hale Comstock, and his attempt to take Anna which ended up accidentally decapitating her in the process. Elizabeth expresses anger and resentment at Comstock, and she and the Luteces reveal that he had the twins send him to Rapture to forget his past, reverting him back to Booker DeWitt to start a new life there. A horrified, penitent Comstock apologizes to Elizabeth for what he had done, but she doesn't accept this and he is suddenly impaled from behind through the chest by the still living Bouncer's drill, killing Comstock and fulfilling Elizabeth's vengeance.
Aiding Atlas and the RebellionEdit
Immediately after killing Comstock, the Big Daddy turns on Elizabeth and throws her through a wall — impaling her on a piece of rebar. She awakens to find herself in Paris — but it is only an idyllic illusion of what she perceives the city to be. Walking along the streets, she finds Sally and pursues her as the dream suddenly becomes dark and nightmarish. The illusion ends when Elizabeth can only see Sally being burned alive — her regrets of using and harming the girl before leaving her to die. The Luteces come to her aid and explain that when she died, she suffered a collapse in quantum-superposition, effectively cutting her off from all alternate versions of herself. Now, she is nothing more than a normal person. All that she has left is her knowledge from her books and her memory of what she saw behind the doors. Despite the warnings from the Luteces, she demands to be brought back to Rapture to save Sally — even now that she has no powers.
Elizabeth wakes up to find Atlas, Rapture's revolutionary, and his thugs scavenging Comstock's corpse and capturing Sally. Before they can kill Elizabeth, a vision of Booker — which no one else notices — appears and comes to her aid. Booker instructs Elizabeth to tell Atlas she can get him and his forces back to Rapture with the help of Yi Suchong, claiming to be his lab assistant. In exchange, Atlas will give Sally back to her, unharmed. She is left to find Suchong — but is experiencing amnesia. Elizabeth then comes across her own corpse and realizes the Booker that is communicating with her is simply a facet of her own subconscious.
Surviving against the Splicers — Elizabeth is aided by the voice of Booker. She begins to have visions — claiming that the doors are cracking open. Her memories from what she saw behind the doors are returning — and are foreseeing the future. She doesn't know, however, whose future she is observing. Elizabeth learns that Suchong has taken up shop in the Silver Fin Restaurant and ventures there. Inside the restaurant, she discovers the doctor had been researching and photographing the Tears in Rapture that lead to Columbia. Suchong had also built his own version of the Lutece Device to enter the flying city but it has been sabotaged. Suchong contacts Elizabeth and threatens to eliminate her — but Elizabeth finds a way to help both him and Atlas.
Elizabeth remembers that the Lutece Particle was a part of the Lutece Field, and was responsible for why Columbia and its aircrafts were able to fly. By repairing the machine, she could open a Tear to Columbia, retrieve the Lutece Particle, return to the Housewares, and apply the particle to the top floor's ceiling to lift the Department Store back up to Rapture. Elizabeth searches for the equipment necessary to repair the machine, and in doing so comes across Atlas' overall plan. Through telegrams and maps in his hideout, she learns that Atlas is planning to attack Rapture and lead the poor working class to rebel against Ryan. Meanwhile, he is looking for his "Ace In The Hole", created by Suchong to help him achieve his goals — Elizabeth also discovers that Atlas is actually Frank Fontaine in disguise, having faked his death and created the false identity of the rebel leader to throw Ryan off his trail and gather new followers in his plot to take control of Rapture. Elizabeth fixes the Lutece Device and activates it, opening a Tear to Columbia's Finkton district.
Return to ColumbiaEdit
Elizabeth opens the Tear back inside The First Lady — which was stationed in the Finkton Factory during the Vox Populi revolution. After obtaining the Lutece Particle — Suchong closes the Tear and agrees to open it in exchange for Elizabeth bringing him a sample of hair from a subject in Jeremiah Fink's hidden laboratory. With no other choice, Elizabeth ventures into the Factory — where she finds Daisy Fitzroy conversing with the Luteces. It is then revealed that Daisy, while wanting to kill Fink, had no intention of harming his son, the child she was supposedly about to execute before Elizabeth killed her. The Luteces concur that while Daisy would die in the process, her threatening the boy and dying by Elizabeth's hands would further her cause — revealing that the twins had arranged the events in reality for Elizabeth to mature by killing Daisy.
Elizabeth enters the Factory labs, after spotting her past self and Booker while they were en route to the First Lady, and searches for the hair sample. It is here that she discovers that Suchong observed Fink through the Tears stealing the production of Plasmids — while also making them consumable. Suchong and Fink then collaborated with each other, working on Plasmid and Vigor enhancements while also working on the creation of Big Daddies. Fink, through researching the Big Daddies, created the Songbird — but neither scientist could have their Protectors imprint on their respective subjects (Suchong's Little Sisters and Elizabeth). Eventually, Fink managed to make Songbird imprint on Elizabeth, and Suchong now wishes to obtain the girl's DNA to obtain the answer to the pair-bonding. Elizabeth learns that she pair-bonded with Songbird when saving his life by reattaching his oxygen tube. She retrieves the hair sample, revealed to be her own, and returns to Rapture, escaping the Vox troops scavenging the Factory.
Return to Rapture and the Civil WarEdit
Elizabeth returns to Rapture and gives her hair sample to Suchong so he can further his research on pair-bonding. She is then contacted by Andrew Ryan, who deems her as either an ally or a criminal — and gives her the choice to join either his side or Atlas', as his forces have now invaded the Department Store and are massacring Atlas' goons. Elizabeth rejects Ryan's offer and he sends his troops after her as she heads to Fontaine's private office with the Lutece Particle. She applies it to the ceiling and thus the Department Store floats back up and returns to Rapture, but not before Atlas betrays her by having his men knock her out with chloroform. That night, Atlas and his minions bomb the Kashmir Restaurant and begin the Civil War in Rapture.
When Elizabeth awakens the next day, she is interrogated by Atlas' henchmen, who demand to know the location of the "Ace In The Hole". She is injected with truth serum, and rendered unconscious again. Elizabeth finds herself in front of a mirror staring at her bloody reflection as she claims that this world "values children, not childhood, with a profit to be made, and men who make it". After coming in and out of consciousness for two weeks, she reawakens to a war-torn Rapture and Atlas threatening her with a transorbital lobotomy. Elizabeth accepts this fate and goads Atlas to do it. He grows furious and threatens to lobotomize Sally instead. Before he can do so, Elizabeth has another vision of Booker, revealing to her that she remembered a vision from behind the doors, that she didn't return to Rapture for no reason, and that Sally wouldn't die nor Elizabeth would die in vain, as Booker shows that the answer lays in Suchong's clinic. Elizabeth informs Atlas of the Ace's whereabouts and agrees to retrieve it for him in exchange for Sally's freedom.
The Ace In The HoleEdit
Atlas sends Elizabeth into Artemis Suites to find the Ace in Suchong's Clinic. She enters Suchong's secret lab and finds a wounded Bouncer near two Little Sisters blocking the way. Elizabeth attempts to get him out of the way, looking through Suchong's notes as he is still struggling with pair-bonding the Big Daddies to the Little Sisters, revealing that the Big Daddies need the ADAM of the Little Sisters to survive. When telling the Little Sisters that the Big Daddy needs their genetic material to heal, one of the girls extract ADAM from the other and injects it into the Big Daddy — healing him and pair-bonding him with the Little Sisters. Elizabeth then comes across the living quarters of one of Suchong's subjects and finally Suchong himself — during which she witnesses his death at the hands of the same Bouncer she had just bonded with the Sisters after the doctor smacks one of the girls in anger.
Elizabeth retrieves "The Ace In The Hole" from Suchong's body, revealed to be an encoded message of chemical compounds with the subject's picture. Elizabeth returns to Atlas — knowing her fate is sealed — and hands him the Ace In The Hole. Atlas bludgeons Elizabeth with a wrench, causing her to snap back in front of the mirror, revealed to be in an airplane's bathroom. As she walks down the aisle of the plane, she sees Suchong's subject, Jack, pull out his gun and hijack the aircraft. Atlas reads the Ace In The Hole and doesn't understand the coded message, demanding from Elizabeth to tell him what it says. As Elizabeth approaches Jack, the letter given to him in the future and the encoded message by Suchong read: "Would You Kindly". Elizabeth reveals this to Atlas as he succeeds in finding the trigger phrase to set in motion the arrival of Jack in Rapture to kill Ryan thus giving him control of the city — before giving one last fatal blow to Elizabeth's head and departing with his thugs.
A dying Elizabeth envisions the future events to come in Rapture: Jack hijacking and crashing the plane, arriving to the city, killing Ryan and Fontaine, and finally departing Rapture with the Little Sisters he saved. She sees one last door, showing Jack after his journey in Rapture, returning to the surface at the Lighthouse with Sally. Elizabeth realizes that the flashes of the future she was seeing before were of Jack, and she came to the city to set in motion the events that would lead to Sally's rescue. Sally holds her hand and sings "La Vie en rose" to her as Elizabeth peacefully passes away.