- "People say you can't change the past. But even still, if there's a possibility, it's worth a try, right?"
Ellone (エルオーネ Eruōne) is an important non-player character in Final Fantasy VIII. Before the events of the game, Ellone was sought by Sorceress Adel as her successor, but she was successfully rescued when Adel was sealed away. During the plot of Final Fantasy VIII, Ellone is pursued by Ultimecia in her quest to cast Time Compression. Despite being hunted her entire life for her unusual ability to send a human's consciousness back in time, Ellone managed to maintain a childlike innocence about the world, even as a young adult. She is the adopted daughter of Raine and "niece" to Laguna Loire, and the older step-sister of Squall Leonhart. In Japan, published Final Fantasy VIII materials spelled her English name as Ellione.
Appearance and Personality
Ellone is a gifted young woman. Her dream is to have her family reunited and she uses her unique powers to achieve this. However, perhaps in contrast to Ultimecia, when she discovers that she cannot physically change the passage of time she understands and learns to accept the present for what it is.
Appearance wise, as a reflection on her personality, her clothing and overall look does not change much from when she was a child; wearing light blue and white ensemble with a green scarf. Her hair is neatly trimmed above the shoulders. Her most notable trait, however, would be her unique ability to send people's consciousness back and forth through time.
Ellone was born in the small village of Winhill on the Galbadian continent. Her exact age isn't given in the game, but judging by the flashbacks she should be around 4-5 years older than Squall. Ellone lived with her parents in a modest home in the town square, next door to the town pub. One year later, the Sorceress War broke out between Galbadia and Esthar, and Estharian troops raided Winhill. Esthar's leader, Sorceress Adel, was searching for an heir and the soldiers demanded the village hand over all of its young girls for consideration. Ellone's parents refused to hand over their daughter and were gunned down for their rebellion. However, Ellone somehow managed to escape the Estharian's clutches, and once the soldiers had departed she was taken in by her next door neighbor, Raine.
In the time that followed, Ellone and Raine enjoyed a peaceful life in Winhill, and Ellone seemed to accept Raine as a mother figure. Their makeshift family was not completed, however, until Laguna Loire, a Galbadian soldier, washed up on a beach near Winhill after being critically wounded in battle. Raine took him in and in under six months managed to nurse him back to health. Eternally grateful, Laguna remained with Raine, repaying his imagined debt to her by helping her raise Ellone and patrolling Winhill in a daily effort to keep its residents and streets safe and monster-free.
Ellone grew very attached to Laguna, calling him "Uncle" and following him everywhere. Laguna was similarly taken with the little girl, and enjoyed playing and joking with her. Although Raine and Laguna were only friends at first, Ellone encouraged them to develop their relationship, and they eventually fell in love and married, much to Ellone's delight. Their small family was torn apart, however, when Sorceress Adel's soldiers returned to kidnap Ellone. This time they succeeded in capturing the small girl, taking her away to Esthar to become Sorceress Adel's successor. Enraged, Laguna, along with his friends Kiros and Ward, left Winhill for Esthar to rescue Ellone. Raine, concerned about Ellone's safety, failed to inform Laguna that she was pregnant with his child before he departed.
Once they arrived in Esthar, Laguna, Kiros, and Ward joined forces with a resistance group in attempt to liberate Ellone from Sorceress Adel. The group realized that as long as Adel was alive, she would pursue Ellone indefinitely; Laguna decided that the only way to save Ellone was to get rid of Adel entirely. To this end, Laguna enlisted the help of Estharian scientist Dr. Odine, who built a special cryo-containment device which would effectively bind the Sorceress' powers and place her in suspended animation. The resistance placed the device inside a building they hastily erected just outside of the capitol of Esthar which would later become known as the Sorceress Memorial. They lured Adel to the site using a holographic projection of Ellone, and when the Sorceress entered the building, she was captured. Laguna and Ellone were reunited, and Adel's frozen body was shot into outer space.
With the threat of Adel removed, Laguna hoped he and Ellone could immediately return to Winhill. The Estharians, however, begged him to stay and help them rebuild. Unaware of Raine's condition, he reluctantly agreed, and sent Ellone home to Winhill ahead of him, promising to follow when his work was finished. Ellone returned to Winhill just in time to witness Raine's baby being born. Raine was devastated that Laguna had not come as well, but Ellone's presence comforted her as she fought to give birth. Shortly, Raine managed to deliver a healthy baby boy, whom she named Squall.
The complications which she suffered during the labor, however, proved to be too much to overcome, and Raine died shortly after.
Following Raine's death, the people of Winhill sent both Squall and Ellone to Edea Kramer's orphanage, which had been set up to care for children orphaned by the Sorceress War. At the orphanage, Ellone - who was older than the other children - helped care for them like an older sister. Consequently, Ellone soon earned the nickname "Sis." Although Squall had no recollection of his mother or his hometown of Winhill, he was instinctively drawn to Ellone, and became more attached to her than the other children. The idyllic peace of the orphanage was shattered, however, when the dying Sorceress Ultimecia and a teenage Squall appeared due to a time warp.
Mortally wounded, Ultimecia transferred her Sorceress Power to Edea. The older Squall told Edea that Ultimecia would possess her in the future to try and get her hands on Ellone.
Edea realized that she had to take immediate steps to ensure Ellone's safety; enlisting the older children in her orphanage, Edea formed a group called the White SeeD. They were given a ship and entrusted with Ellone's protection from Sorceresses or anyone else who wished her harm. Whisked away on the White SeeD Ship under utmost secrecy, Ellone did not have a chance to say goodbye to her younger brother who grew up believing she had intentionally abandoned him.
Ellone remained with the White SeeDs for many years, where she grew terribly lonely. Although grateful to those who had taken care of her, Ellone spent much of her time wondering how things might have turned out had Raine lived and Laguna had returned to Winhill.
One day, Ellone suddenly left the White SeeD Ship, embarking on a mission to use her power to prevent her own kidnapping; thus stopping Laguna from leaving Winhill and abandoning Raine. Buoyed by hope, she went to find Squall, now a seventeen-year-old SeeD cadet at Balamb Garden. Unfortunately, much of his childhood memories had been lost due to the use of Guardian Forces in his SeeD training and he had, for the most part, forgotten her.
Regardless, Ellone used her power to send his consciousness back in time to inhabit Laguna's past. Although unsuccessful at changing Laguna's actions, Squall's experience triggered many of his buried memories and his revelations allowed Squall and Ellone to properly reunite. Ellone's attempt to change the past also taught her an important lesson - people may not be able to change the past, but they can make the most of the present. Determined to regain her family, Ellone returned to the White SeeD Ship only to escape again at earliest opportunity, fleeing to Esthar on board an Estharian ship in search of Laguna.
Ellone followed Laguna to the Lunar Base Space Station, unaware that Squall was searching for her. Squall followed her to the base, desperate to find a cure for Rinoa Heartilly, who had fallen into a comatose sleep during battle. Squall begged Ellone to send his consciousness back into Rinoa's past to see what had happened to her and prevent it. Ellone finally gave in, sending Squall into Rinoa's most recent past and helping him uncover the secret to her strange behavior: Rinoa had been possessed by Sorceress Ultimecia.
They discover that, in the future, Sorceress Ultimecia was using an invention of Dr. Odine's called "Junction Machine Ellone" to send her consciousness into the past to possess past Sorceresses in an attempt to achieve Time Compression. The invention, Odine deduces, is one which mimics Ellone's powers, created by himself as a result of experimentation done on Ellone's brainwaves when she was held captive in Esthar. It appeared, however, that the machine had limits to how far back it could send Ultimecia and so she was attempting to find Ellone and possess her as a means of using Ellone's power to travel beyond the machine's limits. Odine uses this knowledge to design a plan to stop Ultimecia. First, Squall and his SeeD partners had to do away with Sorceress Adel, who Ultimecia was on the verge of awakening. This would force Ultimecia to possess the only Sorceress left in the present: Rinoa.
Once Rinoa was possessed, Ellone had to send both Rinoa's and Ultimecia's consciousnesses as far back in time as she could. Ellone had to then pull Rinoa back to the present and send Ultimecia back to the future, halting Time Compression (if only temporarily) and allowing Squall to reach Ultimecia and defeat her. The plan was successful with Ultimecia falling at Squall's hands. With the world's known threats all defeated Laguna returned to Winhill, visiting Raine's grave. Ellone's family was finally reunited; with her "Uncle" back in Winhill and Squall - her brother in every way apart from blood relation - looking over them from Balamb Garden.
Ellone was born with the special power to send people's consciousness back and forward through time. Her ability is never adequately explained in the game, however it has been noted that she is able to project her consciousness into the minds of others and speak with them mentally, as she sometimes does with Squall. It would seem that she can also receive their responses to her communiques, regardless as to whether or not the recipient of her thoughts has any telepathic ability. When she links herself mentally to another person in this fashion, she calls it "connecting." Conversely, when Ellone severs the mental link, she calls it "disconnecting."
Once "connected" with an individual, Ellone is able to exercise a more unusual aspect of her powers - the ability to "send" that individual's consciousness into the mind of someone else, regardless of time and space. The individual whose mind is being inhabited is only vaguely aware of the intruding consciousness; as demonstrated by Laguna who refers to the presence of Squall's mind as the "faeries speaking".
Although Ellone's purpose for sending Squall into the past was to affect Laguna's actions, it does not seem that the "sent" individual has any control over the person whom they are inhabiting. Rather, the "sent" individual acts as an observer to the actions of the possessed person; unless the individual themselves possesses an ability to take over the host, such as what Ultimecia has demonstrated.
It would seem that Ellone can only "connect" with people in present time and one may assume she cannot send her own consciousness into the past; otherwise, she might have attempted to change Laguna's actions herself, without enlisting the help of Squall.
It is mentioned that Ellone can only "send" to people who she has met previously, thus why Ellone has to choose between Adel and Edea, the only sorceresses she has met herself, when sending Rinoa Heartilly back in time in Lunatic Pandora.
The Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania explains that Ellone's ability to connect to the mind of another, is the same kind of process as when a person junctions a Guardian Force; one's consciousness can’t be connected to another without an intermediary with a special ability — a Guardian Force, Ellone herself, or the Junction Machine Ellone. One whose mind is being junctioned to by another — the person on the receiving end of the junction — may experience a sensation like the sound of people chattering. However, the junctioned consciousness will likely be unable to put what has happened into words. In addition, the body of the person on the broadcast end falls into a comatose state, with their consciousness gaining a clear view on the end of the person they’re being junctioned to.
Ellone possesses a rare Triple Triad card of Laguna Loire. The card can be won from her by Squall while aboard the Lunar Base. However, this may prove to be a challenge as the Lunar Base uses almost all the card rules found across regions.