Art by John Cassaday.
|First appearance||Astonishing X-Men, vol. 3 #4 (mentioned)
Astonishing X-Men, vol. 3 #7(fully)
|Created by||Joss Whedon
|Alter ego||Ruth Aldine|
|Team affiliations||Xavier Institute
Jean Grey School Students
|Abilities||Telepathy, retrocognition, clairvoyance, and precognition|
Blindfold (Ruth Aldine) is a fictional character, a mutant and a member of the student body of the Xavier Institute in Marvel Comics' X-Men-related comic books. She first appeared in Astonishing X-Men, vol. 3 #7 and was created by Joss Whedon and John Cassaday.
Fictional character biography
Blindfold is a student at the Xavier Institute. She was first mentioned by Hisako Ichiki and Wing before their confrontation with Ord. Hisako and Wing both said she had a big mouth because she had read Wing's mind and informed Hisako of his dreams of one day becoming an X-Man. Wing was upset, but Hisako told him not to worry, as she wanted to be an X-Man too, and that Blindfold was just lonely. In her first actual appearance, the Stepford Cuckoos led her to Emma Frost and the rest of the X-Men to warn them of the coming of the Danger Room entity.[volume & issue needed]
When M-Day hit, she was one of 27 students to maintain her powers. She was excused along with Wallflower, Ernst, and Gentle from Emma Frost's battle royale to determine who would train to be X-Men.[volume & issue needed]
When Emma Frost was suffering from a bad case of survivor's guilt, Blindfold was found by Hisako "crying" in a restroom. While trying to comfort Blindfold, Blindfold tries to convince Hisako that they are going "to lose another one." Wolverine, believing he is a defenseless child due to the manipulations of Cassandra Nova, barged into the restroom asking for help as a feral Beast followed him in. Hisako leaves Blindfold and hides with Wolverine, unfortunately Beast targets Blindfold and goes to attack her. Hisako powers up and scares the feral X-Man away but passes out from exhaustion. Blindfold then takes her to the infirmary because she believes someone was awake only to find the unconscious bodies of Colossus and Cyclops. Eventually Shadowcat makes her way back to the Institute and asks the girls to tell her everything they know. When Kitty leaves to find out who exactly is attacking, Cyclops manages to contact Blindfold and instruct her to give Beast a special box containing a ball of string. He also asks her to keep his mind safe from any sort of psychic attacks as he helps Emma. During the middle of the battle, Ord and the Danger Room entity interrupt and a battle begins between the X-Men, Hisako, Ord and Danger. Suddenly S.W.O.R.D. beamed the team, Danger, Ord, and Hisako into a spaceship headed for the Breakworld. Blindfold was last seen watching them along with a few other students and commented that not all of them will come back.[volume & issue needed]
Quest for Magik
Blindfold, during an evening of storytelling, relayed the history of the deceased New Mutant Illyana Rasputin to her classmates. Her story emotionally bothered some of them as Blindfold began including aspects that both recently happened and were about to happen. She explained that the demon lord Belasco reclaimed the realm of Limbo by defeating its previous mistress, Amanda Sefton. Belasco cast her out of Limbo and began searching for a way to bring back Illyana Rasputin from the dead. After saying this Blindfold and the other students were themselves attacked by demons from Limbo sent by Belasco. She continued to assist the students with advice throughout their time in Limbo, telling certain students when and how to react to their situations, especially concerning Pixie, who she declared "must not fall". She survived the final battle and was returned to the mansion with the rest of the students.[volume & issue needed]
Blinded by the Light
Cannonball is given knowledge of the plans of the Marauders and implies that Blindfold is second on a list targets for elimination by them and the Acolytes, orchestrated by Mr. Sinister. Blindfold speaks to the New X-Men saying that whatever is supposed to happen to her can be prevented by Elixir. She grabs his hands, touching the black part of his skin that represents death and the gold part that represents life at the same time. A large energy transfer of black and gold follows, and she is incapacitated, though the New X-Men are both confused as to what she meant and unsure of whether she is dead or merely unconscious. Right as Pixie goes to get help from Shadowcat, the Institute is attacked by Exodus and his Acolytes. After examining her, Exodus states that Blindfold is dead and she is no longer a priority to them and they continue on to look for Destiny's Diaries in the mansion, but in spite of this she does not 'smell dead' to X-23, and Prodigy theorizes that Blindfold's precognitive abilities forewarned her of Exodus' coming and so she used Elixir's powers to put herself in a deathlike sleep. Shadowcat subsequently operates on Blindfold, who finally awakens to speak further cryptic predictions about the X-Men's handicapped situation, saying that soon Hellion, Pixie, Nightcrawler and someone else she can't recall will be hurt.
Her predictions were soon proven correct when Lady Deathstrike maims Hellion, Scalphunter seriously injures Nightcrawler and Pixie injures herself by blindly teleporting the team from the Reavers. The other person Blindfold mentions but does not recall is Forge, who was injured by Bishop; or perhaps Professor X.[volume & issue needed]
Blindfold has a nightmare in which one of her future teammates, the Young X-Men, is killed by Donald Pierce. She meets up with Rockslide and tells him of her premonition of the soon-to-be-formed team and mentions the death of one of their future teammates, though Santo appears to take little heed of it, being more interested in the team uniforms she saw. As predicted, Cyclops arrives at the cafe and offers Santo a place on the team, but also revealing that he did not wish to recruit Ruth. However, Santo refuses to join the team unless she is allowed to as well, noting that Ruth's vision included her on the squad as well. Cyclops concedes, and Ruth takes her place on the squad.
Cyclops orders Ruth and Ink to bring in Dani Moonstar, who is apparently a member of a new Brotherhood of Mutants. However Ink betrays Ruth and delivers both girls to Donald Pierce, who is revealed to be impersonating Cyclops. Eventually they are freed and Ruths prediction comes to pass and Wolf Cub is killed. She then relocates to San Francisco with the rest of the Young X-Men, but leaves the team. Cyclops states that Ruth will only be called in as needed.
When Cipher reveals her presence to the Young X-Men, Cyclops explains that she had been there in secret under his orders helping the Young X-Men and much earlier, including during Beast's attack on Blindfold during Astonishing X-Men. Blindfold's seemingly one-sided conversation during that time (and others) is revealed to have actually been a conversation between herself and Cipher, who was able to mask her part of the conversation using her stealth powers. Blindfold is the only other besides Jean Grey, Cyclops, and Graymalkin who were aware of Cipher's existence prior to the events of Young X-Men. The two developed a friendship during this time.[volume & issue needed]
Blindfold is contacted by the newly resurrected Destiny by accident when she was trying to reach her foster daughter Rogue. Destiny saves her life from being crushed by falling rubble and gives her some information to help combat Selene's forces. After Destiny breaks contact with her, she believes she made a grave mistake. This mistake is revealed to be that Ruth is possessed by Proteus.
Blindfold is eventually freed thanks to Magneto who uses his powers to disrupt Proteus' energy matrix. During a conversation with Destiny, it is revealed that she and Destiny are distant relatives and that Ruth's mother had sacrificed herself to save Ruth from her brother, for what reason has yet to be revealed.
Age of X
Blindfold later confides in Rogue that she had visions of an entity, a mysterious force that wanted to change everything, and once it started it would not stop until everything had been destroyed. However, she cannot identify what it is because it keeps hiding around the periphery of her visions. Rogue, along with Madison Jeffries, eventually find a squid-like spider-monster that had escaped from Emplate's dimension, which they think to be the entity Blindfold sensed. However, after Rogue defeats the creature, Blindfold reveals that the threat is still out there.
Blindfold is next seen in the jail of Fortress X during the "Age of X" storyline. She is one of the mutants considered too dangerous to roam free and is under Danger's supervision. She seems to be the Earth-616 version of the character and the only person seen so far with any memory of the mainstream reality.
Blindfold was shown to experience great pain when Legion lost control of his power, due to the mental shockwave of his father's death, and saying that someone changed the future and the "old king is dead, long live the new king." Later, she helped the X-Men track down Legion, but could only know what he wanted to do, which was to hide. When the X-Men finally found Legion, they were unable to defeat him due to the help of two telepath twins who were helping him to control his powers. However, Blindfold, despite Beast's protests, joined the battle and used her telepathy to enter Legion's mind. She introduced herself as his nemesis, put all his sub-personas to sleep, kicked the twins out of his mind and restrain him. While trying to reason with David, a new persona who seemingly wasn't affected by her power slashed her throat and told her to get out of David's mind. This caused Blindfold to experience a psychic trauma, which left her barely breathing.
In the next issue, Legion returns to the school in an attempt to heal Blindfold. However, it is revealed that the two eyes that Legion encountered in the first issue were the remnants of Luca, Blindfold's older anti-mutant brother, who is bent on killing Blindfold. Luca first possesses and then kills one of the mutant twins in an attempt to kill Blindfold. However, the skill set he had stolen from Blindfold at his execution (for the murder of their mother) plays up meaning that Luca is not able to manipulate events to dispose of Legion. However, Luca manages to set Legion up and it looks for a moment as though he will escape courtesy of the X-Men, who do not have the whole story, but Blindfold is brought back into the story and stabs him. It is not made clear whether or not Luca was killed. Towards the end of the issue, Blindfold meets Legion in the rain briefly.
Powers and abilities
Blindfold is psionic, but the full extent of her abilities is unknown. She has been shown in Astonishing X-Men using telepathy and New X-Men to sometimes psychically sense events when other telepaths apparently did not, such as Belasco pulling everyone inside the mansion into Limbo. During her appearances in Astonishing X-Men she used telepathy, and in her most recent appearances in New X-Men and X-Men, she has been said to be a clairvoyant, retrocognitive and precognitive mutant, meaning that she is able to see distant, past, and future places or events; her power is so great that she was immune- albeit to a limited degree- to the reality warp caused by Legion's 'Moira' personality that created the 'Age of X', allowing her to be aware that something was wrong with the world. Her blindness is part of her mutation in the sense that she has no eyes, but rather has skin where eyes would normally be.
Blindfold's precognitive abilities are neutralized while in the presence of Destiny, another precognitive. Destiny explains that this is because two precogs in close presence to one another "are like two magnets pressed together positive pole to positive pole" and will negatively affect one another's precognitive abilities and powers.
Blindfold has a unique speech pattern. It includes the odd insertion into her sentences of words of politeness, including "please", "thank you", "you're welcome", and "pardon". She's also been known to oddly insert the words "yes" and "no" into her sentences. The reason she has this pattern is explained in X-Men Legacy when Legion tries to wake her up from her coma: Her brother Luca was a mutant hater and tried to kill her when she was little, but in a fit of rage he killed their mother. Years later, Blindfold attended his execution and, just after he died, his astral projection attacked her and stole half of her powers, leaving her "broken". When telepathically projecting herself into Legion's mind in the same issue, Blindfold did not demonstrate this speech pattern, instead speaking in a normal manner and acting with more confidence than is usually the case.
Given that she is both a telepath and a precognitive, she often answers questions before they are asked and responds to comments before they are spoken aloud. As a result, she tends to turn what would ordinarily be a two-way conversation into a monologue. While she does not always do this, it may be assumed that she is allowing the other person or persons to say what she already knows they will say out of politeness' sake.
Some of her "one-sided" conversations in Astonishing X-Men and Young X-Men were explained as having been with her friend Cipher, who remained concealed from all others around them by using her complete stealth mutant powers.
- Astonishing X-Men, vol. 3 #4, 7–8, 15–18
- New X-Men, vol. 2 #23
- New X-Men, vol. 2 #37–40
- X-Men, vol. 2 #201
- X-Men, vol. 2 #203
- Young X-Men #1
- Young X-Men #6
- X-Force #22
- X-Necrosha #1
- X-Men: Legacy #231
- X-Men: Legacy #233
- X-Men: Legacy #244
- New Mutants #22
- X-Men: Legacy #233