The Vanguard have long dealt with rumors of this Exo from the early days of the City Age. Some Guardians maintain that her appearances are merely apparitions caused by exposure to Vex technology and their ever-present hallucinogenic properties. Others claim that she’s the final member of a long-lost Exo squadron, fighting a war that has since been forgotten to history after the Collapse. However, some individuals that encounter her firmly assert that her presence has averted great catastrophes and she has even saved their lives on multiple occasions.
She clearly knows things about our future that we don’t currently know ourselves. She was able to slip in and out of the Tower without anyone noticing. Her rifle could be made of components that the City’s foundries would not be able to currently duplicate and produce with the technology that we have made available to them.
All signs point to the Stranger being from another universe, another timeline from our own. It is likely that her ability to travel through time and space comes from adapting this technology to fulfill her own uses. Most Exo’s that are not Guardians serve the City, usually working side by side with their organic brethren. She claimed that she was “Not forged in Light,” like so many others who were forged during a difficult time of the Golden Age, structured to fight.
The Ishtar Collective
The Ishtar Collective was a research group of four scientists that made their home within the Ishtar Sink settlement, specifically within the walls of the Ishtar Commons and Academy. The group was made up of four members, Dr. Chioma Esi, Dr. Shim, Dr. Duane-McNiadh and Dr. Maya Sundaresh. The Collective was responsible for researching everything that they could about the Vex, studying the race’s ruins, technology and forgotten bodies that had been left behind. Recent discoveries show that the Vex can “simulate” other realities within their core processors. That is, each unit is able to simulate an entire universe on their own.
Vex minds don’t just simulate entire universes within their mind cores, they’re able to know all of the inhabitants of that timeline. The Doctors of the Collective discovered that their personalities and beings were being simulated in a deactivated Vex unit. Combining their effort together, the team set out to free themselves from the Vex network by likely spearheading the Warmind project, possibly helping develop the Warminds that we know today, the only remaining being Rasputin underneath the ruins of the Cosmodrome.
Through some miraculous means, the brilliant group of scientists were able to pull out 227 “copies” (as the records describe them) of themselves. After explaining the situation that they were in, all 227 “copies” of the Collective unanimously decided to volunteer themselves to be sent into the Vex network. It’s likely they did this to find a way out, a means of escaping the Vex’s simulations and returning themselves to the true reality. Records indicate that the original Maya, or at least a copy of her, went on to found the Future War Cult during the Golden Age.
Logs were discovered belonging to Maya Sundaresh and, what appears to be the Exo Stranger. Maya labels her entries, “CHASM” while the logs pertaining to the Stranger are labeled “BRIDGE.”
The log that belonged to Dr. Sundaresh seems to have belonged in the hands of the War Cult, and Sundaresh started the log to keep track of her research for her “love,” Dr. Chioma Esi of the Collective. However, she states that she believes that the log might become a “tradition” of the War Cult, updating it as their records continue on. FWC has continued logging their experiments in the same format. However, they use the exact same entry system as the Stranger, marking their entries as “RECORD – # CHASM – #”
Does this mean that the Stranger is linked to, and possibly allied to the War Cult? The Stranger, the War Cult and Dr. Sundaresh share a link that may only be known to the members of their inner circle.