[Excerpt from a list of known underworld elements]
Little is known of Elizabeth's [sic] Stride's origins, except that she hailed from Morley, rumored to be the daughter of a seamstress and a traveling cloth merchant. Stride was forced to flee Morley in her early years after strangling an abusive schoolmaster. She smuggled herself out of the city disguised as a boy and became a powder monkey on a navy ship. The ruse worked for a time, allowing her to see wonders and horrors that women in her society had always been denied. Her high spirit, charisma and fierceness propelled her to the top of the pecking order in the small ship-bound community of children, and they grew loyal to her.
Inevitably her deception was discovered by the ship's surgeon when she was injured during a storm. Before the doctor could report her, she rallied her powder monkeys to toss the man overboard. A bloody fight ensued, but their brief mutiny was crushed and many of her followers were put down. In the chaos, Lizzy and a handful of loyal boys managed to abandon ship in a skiff.
Afterward they found employment for a few seasons with a cartographer working along the coasts of the Pandyssian Continent to map estuaries. There the crew of children grew into experienced and savage fighters. With the conclusion of the mapping expedition the crew sailed back to Gristol.
Once in Dunwall, Lizzy and her hardened friends carved a space for themselves in the street culture of the city. Their nautical experience had them at home on the Wrenhaven River, a territory previously unclaimed by any gang. They recruited former sailors, pirates and defectors from other gangs. She took an unlikely lover, a naval aristocrat that arranged for her to carry merchant marine papers, giving them legitimacy in the eyes of the government and allowing her to sail through territory normally restricted to merchants.
Some of those same powder monkeys from the early years still follow her, helping pilot their cargo boat the Undine up and down the Wrenhaven on smuggling missions.
As the leader of the Dead Eels, Lizzy has an almost mythic reputation for ferocity. She files her teeth to points and is even rumored to have webbed toes. Her enemies fear her unpredictable violence as much as they despise her.