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This article focuses on the Seattle character also known as the Witch.
For her New Enchanted Forest's persona, see Gothel.
For the Season Seven episode, see "Eloise Gardener (Episode)".
For the criminal case, see Eloise Gardener Case.
For the DunBroch character, see Witch (The Bear King).
For the Season Three episode, see "Witch Hunt".


Eloise Gardener is a member of a dangerous cult. That symbol you've been chasing, that's their symbol. That's why Eloise ran away all those years ago. She was seduced into this cult, indoctrinated, rising through the ranks until she, eventually, became their leader.
Weaver to Rogers src

Eloise Gardener, also known as Mother Gothel and the Witch, is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. She débuts in the third episode of the seventh season, and is the cursed counterpart of Gothel.

History

For events occurring after the breaking of the fourth curse, see Gothel.

During Fifth Curse

During Rogers's first year on the job as a cop in Hyperion Heights, he is assigned to Eloise's missing person case. After getting a lead on where she may be, he heads into a dark alley and is shot. He remembers a blonde woman holding her hand to his wound and keeping him alive until the ambulance arrived. However, he never found Eloise, a fact which haunts him. ("A Pirate's Life")

Ten years later, Rogers continues this investigation with the help of Henry and Roni. After assisting in the arrest of Sam Ochotta, Rogers spies a tattoo on his wrist that matches a symbol Eloise drew multiple times in her journal. He interrogates him about the image but Sam insists he knows nothing about Eloise and that only got the tattoo in prison to ward off evil. However, Sam also suggests that whatever the girl was running from, it must have been something bad if she drew the symbol. After his release, he tells someone over the phone that they have trouble as someone is looking for the girl. ("Greenbacks")

In reality, Eloise Gardener is the cursed identity of Gothel, which she received after Regina cast Drizella's curse to save Henry's life. As part of her plan, Eloise is locked at the top of Belfrey Towers by Victoria Belfrey. One day, after Victoria successfully obtains the coffin of her daughter Anastasia from the Community Garden, she visits her prisoner. Victoria discusses her plans to use Lucy as a means to revive Anastasia, although Eloise cautions that the girl must forfeit her belief willingly for it to work. Victoria wishes for her help to accomplish this, but Eloise declines, refusing to be intimidated by the latter. She issues an ominous warning to Victoria, in that even if she is able to defeat the heroes and bring back Anastasia from the dead, she will have to deal with her next. ("The Garden of Forking Paths", "The Eighth Witch")

Visited again by Victoria, Eloise notes she must be having trouble breaking Lucy's belief if she is back to see her again so soon. She criticizes Victoria for her naiveté about belief, which is not something that can be removed in one swipe because belief grows deep and she must sever it from the root. Victoria offers her a cup of tea, but this seems to set off Eloise, who attempts to lunge at her, only for her chains to keep her from going any further. Eloise angrily demands her special tea, however, Victoria only agrees to give it to her if she tells her about which root to start with. After the information is presumably exchanged, Victoria obtains the herbs for the tea from her daughter Ivy before returning to make the brew for Eloise. When Ivy brings Roni to Eloise's hideout to prove she is serious about taking down Victoria, Eloise is told by Ivy to stay out of view so Roni does not see her, though Roni finds a photo of herself and Henry which Ivy planted. Ivy later returns to seek out Eloise, who scares her by reappearing behind her, causing a startled Ivy to break the tea set. Eloise, seemingly in a secret alliance with Ivy that Victoria doesn't know about, asks if she was able to gain the trust of the heroes. Ivy confirms she did and boasts about them trusting her as much as her mother does. Eloise praises Ivy for her good work and openly suggests that, while Victoria cannot see how clever her daughter is, she can. Ivy is pleased by her recognition, but then, regains her cool to instruct her to resume playing her part with Victoria as they discussed. Eloise promises to do just that and calls her "my sweet Ivy", though as Ivy herself turns to leave, she asks Eloise to refer to her by her real name: Drizella. ("Greenbacks", "Wake Up Call")

From Victoria's office, Ivy brings a bouquet of hyacinths to Eloise, who detects a small seed of magic in them. Eloise insists the magic can only continue to grow in fertile soil, which Ivy is unhappy about having to fetch, but she reminds the girl that they must be patient if they wish to survive. She suggests to Ivy that giving the photo to Roni was a mistake, though Ivy assures her that Regina won't be a problem soon enough. After Ivy gets the soil, Eloise buries some of the hyacinth petals on it and enchants them into taking the form of a spiky plant. Ivy plucks one of the spikes, with Eloise cautioning her of the dangerous path it will take someone down, however, Ivy decides that they will have to see how it will affect Regina and then squeezes the spike's liquid into a small bottle. ("Wake Up Call")

While Lucy still stubbornly holding to her belief, Victoria pays another visit to Eloise, during which she sees a speck of dirt on the ground. Eloise implies Victoria must've brought it in from her shoes, however, Victoria is onto her, cautioning that she will most certainly find out if she has had help. After discovering Ivy's dirt covered shoes, Victoria returns to confront Eloise, who proposes that if she wants to blame anyone, she should blame her own blind incompetence. Victoria, appalled that Eloise has only been pretending to help her all this time, demands to know when she woke Drizella up, but the latter admits her daughter has always been awake except Victoria has been too obsessed with Anastasia to see the truth. When Eloise reveals Ivy wishes to see her suffer, Victoria reminds her of the true nature of the ivy plant, which can't grow unless it clings to something else, namely Eloise. Victoria vows to bring her down so Ivy will have nothing and then warns her that she will never feel the warm light of day ever again. After Victoria has moved Eloise to another building, Rogers closes in on her there in search of Eloise, whom he believes she is holding captive. Rogers enters a room where the Witch has hidden herself under a blanket, but upon hearing him call her Eloise and coaxing her out, she unveils herself and accepts his help. Following the rescue, the cops come to arrest Victoria. While Ivy smugly taunts her mother now that she is the prisoner and the Witch is free, Victoria angrily denounces Ivy for unleashing someone who is more dangerous than she can fathom. Eloise is then placed into a social services truck and Rogers gets in with her. ("Eloise Gardener")

Later, Eloise is provided a place to stay in a transitional home. She visits Rogers at the police station, where she gifts him a cake as thanks for rescuing her. Rogers asks about how she is doing and if she has seen her therapist yet, to which Eloise admits she still has nightmares and that she did try to go to therapy but it didn't work out. Rogers hands her his card, telling her to call him if she ever needs anything, with Eloise thanking him for being her white knight. Later when Roni visits Rogers, she notices Eloise's cake on his desk, and pushes it into the trash, seemingly not wanting him to eat it because it is too sugary. At a secure location, Ivy visits Eloise as she practices magic and fails due to the low amount of magic in the town. She states her plans to find her sister, and when Eloise questions why she needs Anastasia's body, she says that there is magic in her that she intends to claim for herself. Eloise, also wanting the same magic, waits until Ivy returns with Anastasia's coffin so they can wake up the girl. As they both work together to remove the coffin lid, they soon find that she is not inside and deduct that Victoria must've hidden her somewhere else. ("Pretty in Blue")

As Eloise joins Ivy in her car to tail Victoria, who has teamed up with Weaver since leaving jail, she regards the small tree-shaped ornament on the vehicle mirror as strange and ponders why people of this world recreate nature in that way, to which Ivy points out that it's air freshener. The pair observe Weaver reentering Victoria's car, with Eloise noting that the man's alliance with Ivy's mother is troublesome and that they should not underestimate Victoria, though Ivy insists she knows from experience that her mother always makes the wrong choices. They follow Weaver and Victoria to the mausoleum but enter the building later, not realizing Victoria has already left, as only Weaver is inside by then. Ivy leaves shortly after, but Eloise stays behind to chat with Weaver. Weaver is perplexed by the real name she chooses to use, "Mother Gothel", as she is neither a mother in the conventional sense nor is she a nun. Eloise explains that while her name can mean different things to people, she works best attending to people's needs. She offers her services to Weaver, who declines, to which she cautions that he won't be able to find the Guardian on his own. Eloise emphasizes that he has yet to know the cost of Victoria awakening Anastasia, which requires sacrificing an innocent's belief. As an impatient Weaver tells her to just spit it out, Eloise ominously asks him where his great-granddaughter Lucy is; implying that she is the sacrifice Victoria intends to use. ("One Little Tear")

After Anastasia's resurrection, Eloise finds the girl at the police station in the company of Weaver and Victoria. Anastasia's powers go haywire as Eloise approaches, causing her to knock out Eloise, Weaver, and Victoria. Ivy, managing to trick Anastasia into wearing magic dampening bracelets, takes her to a remote location, intending to absorb her sister's powers, however, the opposite happens. Eloise reveals this fact only after Anastasia has unintentionally taken all of Ivy's magic, and as a stunned Ivy reacts to being betrayed, Eloise pushes her into a pit, where she has also trapped Victoria. Directly after, Eloise leads Anastasia to another room, where several cloaks are on display. She informs the girl that the cloaks belong to her sisters, the Coven of the Eight, and that they will now find the other six members. ("The Eighth Witch")

When Eloise tells Anastasia of her plans to bring her somewhere more suitable as a home, the girl only expresses interest in being with her mother. Eloise dissuades her from this by pulling up Victoria from the pit to reveal her many crimes to Anastasia, who is shocked by all the terrible things her mother has done. After dropping Victoria back into the pit, Eloise goes to the hospital to speak with Kelly West, Roni's sister, whom she believes is in possession of the Resurrection Amulet. She offers to revive Lucy with Anastasia's magic if Kelly forfeits the amulet to her at the Botanical Garden Greenhouse. Later, Eloise takes Anastasia to her apartment, providing her with cereal and cartoons. The girl is still lost after learning the truth about her mother and being in a world she doesn't understand. Eloise sympathizes with her feelings as she was once in the same position, particularly in displaying magic early and the fear as well as manipulation she endured from other people because of her abilities. As she tells Anastasia about how she eventually found someone who helped her grow stronger, there is a knock at the door. This scares Anastasia, who causes the table to shake, but Eloise persuades her to calm down and hide in the closet. Anastasia is out of sight just before Rogers enters to check up on Eloise because Victoria has gone missing and he wanted to make sure she didn't come after her. Rogers becomes suspicious over the food and television, which Eloise insists she has to remind herself of simpler times, although this doesn't stop Roger from moving towards the closet to investigate. Eloise stops him by purposely dropping a teacup, telling him that closed spaces still scare her, and asks him to walk her to her art therapy class. Rogers agrees, and he leaves the apartment with her shortly after. At the greenhouse, Victoria shows up to give the amulet to Eloise, in an effort to make up for what she did to Lucy. Since the amulet is empty, Eloise has Anastasia touch the stone so it can absorb her magic. She dismisses Anastasia afterward by wiping her memory of the incident and instructing her to leave. As the amulet needs a sacrifice, Eloise summons Ivy into the ritual circle to take her life in exchange for Lucy's return. Victoria, unaware such a thing was required, tries to stop Eloise at first, but when that doesn't work, she shoves Ivy from the circle and insists on taking her place. Eloise agrees to the change and then drains Victoria's life force into the amulet, which kills her. ("Secret Garden")

While Rogers and Weaver believe the recent deaths of Doctor Sage and Victoria, as well as the attempted murder of Hilda Braeburn, is linked to Eloise's purported cult of women, Eloise shows up at the police station to provide information about the killer. However, when Weaver asks where she was the night of Victoria's death, Eloise becomes upset at his accusation and refuses to cooperate unless she is only speaking to Rogers. After Eloise receives this accommodation, Rogers returns to the room to say his partner is away on a coffee break, though Eloise knows without a doubt that Weaver is observing the conversation through the security monitor. She persuades Rogers that to find the killer, he must know himself first. Rogers plays along with her game by acquiescing to her request to see his favorite painting and he brings her one of a ship at sea. Upon seeing the painting, Eloise inquiries about the story behind it. Rogers tells her about his childhood fascination with the ocean, though he eventually grew up and forgot about it. On further probing by Eloise, Rogers admits he never fulfilled his dream in adulthood because he has no one to share it with. Eloise then tells him that while he expressed his pain through painting, the killer has expressed it through murder and both victims were given a specific gift before their deaths, chocolate marzipan truffles in a heart-shaped box. However, when Rogers and Weaver go to a shop where one of the boxes was last delivered, they discover the woman it is addressed to already died years ago, revealing the killer set them up. ("Knightfall", "Sisterhood")

For reasons unexplained, Anastasia disappears on her own, leaving Eloise unsure of her whereabouts. Eloise goes to Belfrey Towers, where she notices a pink bag outside of Victoria's old office. She takes it with her when she goes in to converse with Ivy about renewing their prior deal they had to find Anastasia and obtain her magic, but Ivy declines to help her as it means her sister will die and the magic will go to Eloise so she can get her hands on the Dark One's Dagger. Eloise muses that while Ivy's desire to honor Victoria's dying wish is noble, she won't find Anastasia if she has run out of time and then hands her the bag. Ivy inspects the heart-shaped box inside it, which proves she is the next on the killer's hit list. Eloise mentions she already siphoned some of Anastasia's magic and intends to take the rest once Ivy is gone, however, Ivy is unconcerned about the killer. As Ivy refuses to give in to her, Eloise leaves her to her fate. While Ivy chooses to turn Anastasia over to Mr. Samdi so he can extract her sister's magic and enchant a magic bean to allow her to escape the killer, Eloise shows up to wake Anastasia and urges her to kill Ivy as revenge for betraying her. Anastasia is spurred on by the belief Ivy never cared for her but gradually comes to her senses when Ivy reveals Eloise is using both of them to get Anastasia's magic either way no matter who kills who. After Anastasia sides with her sister, Eloise is forced to retreat with her plans failed. Ivy and her sister later return to the New Enchanted Forest, where they can be a family again and ensure Eloise can never have Anastasia's Guardian powers. ("Sisterhood")

Magical Abilities

Trivia

Etymology

Production Notes

Fairytales and Folklore

Goofs

  • On her police file, Eloise's last name is misspelled as "Gardner", instead of "Gardener".[3] ("Knightfall")

Appearances

See also

References