Rachel (レイチェル, Reicheru) is a freelancer for the Daily Days newspaper and information agency. As the daughter of a train engineer who was falsely accused of sabotaging the railroad, Rachel loves trains but is bitter towards the train industry. As such, she began stowing away on trains in a strange sort of 'revenge'.
Her vendetta came to a close when she stowed away aboard the Flying Pussyfoot and rescued several of the passengers. Confronted by train conductor Claire Stanfield, she promises not to stow away anymore. With Manfred Beriam's reward/hush money, she purchases a vast quantity of train tickets - effectively paying off her 'debt' to the train industry.
In the aftermath, she vows to become a proper information broker.
She is aware of the existence of immortals.
Rachel has an athletic figure and is normally depicted wearing dark green fatigues, though she wears a nice dress and hat in 1932 when meeting with Claire. She has dark blonde hair and hazel eyes.
Rachel is said to harbor a lot of anger towards the railroad company, which made life very hard for her father (who was falsely accused of sabotage). She suppresses her anger by stowing away on trains as an action of "self-satisfaction" and "self-harm". She is told by the President of the Daily Days that if she should ever find her purpose she should buy train tickets as a means of paying back her father and not the company. After the incident, she reflects that revenge had been a foolish reason to stowaway, and resolves not to stowaway anymore.
She is described as having a stubborn but very determined personality. She has good instincts, thanks to having dealt in all kinds of business in the underworld (such as sneaking into mafia hideouts) as a field agent. She can be reckless in her curiosity: on the Flying Pussyfoot she travelled the train collecting information rather than remaining in hiding. She is undoubtedly an inquisitive individual. During the Flying Pussyfoot incident she reflects that she had been in perilous situations and faced death several times but none of her past experiences had shaken her psyche to the point it did upon facing the Rail Tracer.
She claims that she (like her father) loves trains, perhaps even more than people. And it is apparent that this is very well the case; when she faces Claire Stanfield aboard the Flying Pussyfoot she starts sobbing, begging him to stop killing people and defiling the train.
Rachel can be considered a good person, if a rather unusual one.
In 1921, Rachel's father is ruined when he is falsely accused of being responsible for a train accident. In fact, he (an engineer) had warned the company about the faulty train in the first place - but the company ignored his advice. When the accident happens, Turner pushes all the blame on him and the other engineers. Fot this act Rachel she never pays her train fares as a personal revenge against the train industry.
She works is a freelancer for the Daily Days newspaper and information agency taking on numerous dangerous assignments and travelling widely due to her 'free' travel methods.
On December 30, 1931 Rachel stows away aboard the Flying Pussyfoot at Chicago's Union Station in order to travel to the Daily Days headquarters in New York to deliver information on a certain incident that happened in Chicago. She is seated in the dining car when the Lemures, Vicky, and Nick simultaneously attempt to take control of the car.
In the midst of the confusion, Rachel escapes through a window and seeks refuge under the cars, where she observes the Rail Tracer (Claire) as he slaughters both the Russos and the Lemures, and later she sees him kill Czeslaw Meyer. Claire spots her, and crawls alongside the train to whisper in her ear "your ticket please," prompting her to scream and flee.
Eventually, Rachel takes on a more active role as she frees Natalie and Mary Beriam she taps on the window when they imprisoned prompting the black suit standing as their captor to open and lean out of it allowing her to drag him out and throw him off the train. She then leads Natalie and Mary out the window and onto the roof of the train to make their escape. Rachel decides her leg injury would be too much of a hindrance and reluctantly tells them to go on without her deciding to stand as their shield against the man with a sniper who had just appeared. After which she is immediately captured by Spike.
Once captured Goose ties her up alongside Nice Holystone and Nick and accuses her of being the assassin Vino which she finds hilarious. Goose then leaves to deal with the issue of his men vanishing leaving them alone. Once she confirms he’d left she immediately escapes from the rope with her own serrated fingernails (and frees the other two in the process). Whilst freeing the two of them she informs Nice of Czes ‘death’. She then escapes out the window.
Rachel enters the Third Class car, looking for a place to rest. She is immediately confronted by Turner, who doesn't recognize her from his past. He is waving about a rifle, and accuses her of being one of the White Suits. As he rants, he claims that he's "never been wrong," and that his success thus far was built on his certainty (and he's not about to let her ruin that). Rachel takes his words ("you've never been wrong?") and asks him if "the accident back then" wasn't one of his mistakes.
At his confusion, she brings up a certain decade-old train accident - the one that had ruined her father's life. He becomes deranged when he realizes that she knows about his "dirty secret," and points the barrel of his rifle at her forehead. Rachel bitterly smiles and says that this must be her punishment for "dirtying the trains' pride by stowing away" on the train. She doesn't care if it's the train that "does [her] in" in the end. If it means she'll be killed by the one who's "staked everything on this train..."
Rachel calls at the top of her lungs for the conductor (Claire) to kill her before Turner does. Claire (who'd been nearby) forcibly dislocates Turner's shoulders, and the man loses consciousness. He is about to kill the man when Rachel (who has picked up Turner's rifle) shouts at him to stop. Claire doesn't see a problem with killing the man, and comments that she's “You’re a weird one. First you tell me to kill you, then you tell me not to kill some other guy…”
Rachel pleads with him to stop killing people on the train; if he wants to kill someone, kill her and "end everything." Claire asks why she'd go so far, staring into her eyes. She says that her father was a train engineer, and she and her father adored trains so much - perhaps even more than people. Sobbing, she begs him to stop "dirtying the pride of the train" and the pride of those who made it. To please stop staining the train - the rail - the people - with blood. He says that's a sizable request, coming from a stowaway. She says that is why both he and she are guilty of the same thing. Claire grins and replies "you're saying that murder and stowing away are the same crimes? You're a pretty funny lady."
Rachel realizes that Claire - whom she'd always thought a monster - is just as human as she is. Claire reaches into his pocket and pulls out a half-bloodstained ticket. He offers it to her and says that her name is (of course) not on the passenger list, but to just tell the officers that the conductor must have made a mistake. He asks her that she keep quiet about him being the conductor. As he prepares to leave, he remarks that if he hadn’t proposed to Chane and fell in love with her shortly before then he would have proposed to Rachel instead. This gives more context as to why Claire seeks love advice from Rachel later on in regards to Chane, now considering Rachel to be a close acquaintance.
Rachel calls for him to stop, and he assures her not to worry. He won't kill anyone else, and besides - he only killed the Black Suits and the White Suits anyway. He'd need to have it all backwards if he were to kill the passengers. She accuses him of lying, recalling how he'd murdered a boy (Czes) earlier. Claire (who'd forgotten about Czes) says that it's too hard to explain, so she should ask the boy personally.
The Flying Pussyfoot reaches the exchange site, where the cars will be switched out and the engine switched to a smokeless engine before it arrives at Pennsylvania Station. The train is delayed there for two hours while the police investigate, and the Nebula corporation gives each passenger a large sum of hush money. The police accept Rachel's ticket as proof of her passengership (her injury correlates with the blood on it), and give her thigh wound basic treatment. While she is sitting in a chair, she is approached by Senator Manfred Beriam, who expresses his thanks for her rescue of his wife and daughter.
He hands her a thick paper envelope containing a wad of hundred-dollar bills. She protests, but he ignores her and leaves without even asking her name. Rachel thinks he was rather rude (acting as if she'd just helped his family for the money) and she prepares to throw the money at his back. Mrs. Beriam gently takes her arm and apologizes on her husband's behalf. She'd like Rachel to take the money, and explains that Manfred isn't very good at expressing himself. Rachel wants to ask Natalie why she married Manfred, but she holds her tongue.
Natalie expresses deep gratitude for Rachel's actions, and Mary pokes her head out from behind her mother to offer her own thanks. She wants to grow up to be a "great person," just like Rachel. Rachel is taken aback, and she feels guilty that Mary is unknowingly looking up to a stowaway.
Rachel takes the money. Upon arriving at Pennsylvania Station, she heads straight for the ticketing booth and buys as many tickets as she can with about half the money in her possession. She then goes to a local doctor's office to get her injuries properly treated (paying for it with the rest of the money).
Rachel checks into the Daily Days office, where she reports everything she witnessed on the train to the President (and Nicholas, in the anime). After she recounts the ordeal, the President notes that it was uncharacteristic of her to help the passengers. Rachel explains that she did not want to see any more bloodshed. She mentions that she regrets not attacking Turner with her own hands, and the President informs her gratis that Turner (who wanted to sue Nebula) has been threatened into silence by the corporation, which has the power to reveal his true involvement in the train accident in 1921. The President admits that he was the one who sold the information about Turner's past to the company, and states that "information, you see, will sit there and rot if it isn't used." He apologizes for using the information without her permission.
Rachel pauses, and asks the President if she can charge the company for her transportation fees from this point on. Though she has no particular reason for it, she's decided to stop stowing away. The President has no problem with it, and adds that "to do something without having a specific reason is something quite important, you know. I believe it's a wonderful thing to trust one's own feelings. Of course, please don't forget your receipts."
During their talk, Rachel explains to the President that she believes the Rail Tracer to be the conductor. The President reveals that the Rail Tracer is in fact Claire Stanfield (aka. Vino), an assassin for the Gandor Family who kills with his own peculiar sense of justice.
Troubled, Rachel informs him that she saw Claire kill a boy on the train, and asks the President if he knows anything about what happened to the boy (recalling Claire's parting words). The President nonchalantly suggests that she ask the boy herself, and directs her to The Alveare (January 1932).
Several hours later, Rachel arrives at the speakeasy in a hat and dress and takes stock of her surroundings before sitting in an empty seat next to a young boy. Their eyes meet, and Rachel freezes as she realizes she recognizes his voice. He asks her if there is something on his face, and she stutters that she saw him killed on the train. He tells the woman next to him that he's going for a walk, and puts down his honey juice before walking out of the speakeasy. Rachel follows him, and they leave while the Martillo executives tease the boy.
In an adjacent alleyway, Czes asks if she saw him die when he was shot in the head or when he was ground into the rail tracks. He introduces himself as Thomas, and Rachel introduces herself in turn. He looks extremely relieved, and says that he is glad that she is not an immortal. He supposes that there isn't any use in lying to someone who's with the information agency, and says that his real name is Czeslaw Meyer.
Over the next thirty minutes, Czes explains the matter of immortals to Rachel, and proves the truth of what he is saying by incising a large gash on his arm. It heals in a matter of seconds. When he wraps up the talk, Rachel thanks him (addressing him as 'sir'). Czes responds that although he is technically older than her, he'd prefer it if she continues to treat him like a child.
Rachel's world has been turned upside-down in the span of thirty minutes, and she knows that it has been a conversation she will remember all her life. She now realizes the true power of information. Sure, she had collected all kinds of data for the Daily Days in the past, but the information she has just learned surpassed it all. Rachel thanks Czeslaw profusely, and says that he has helped her make a decision about her life. She silently resolves to become a proper information broker instead of a field agent like she is currently. She wants to be like the President or the Vice-President and deal with more information than ever for.
After all - as long as she has information at her disposal, she might be able to prevent things like what had happened to her father.
A strangely familiar man enters the alleyway and calls out to them in greeting. As Rachel and Czes stand there in confusion, the man prattles on how he'd come 'round looking for his friend Firo Prochainezo and was about to head back when he spotted Rachel and Czes in the alleway. He asks what they're up to - and actually, since when were they so friendly in the first place? Czes asks the man who he is, and the man smiles and quips that he thought "most people'd remember the voice of the guy who tried to kill 'em."
Rachel wavers, and the man cheerfully says that he'll let Czes off the hook - and Rachel too, since he heard that she bought all her tickets properly in the end. Rachel and Czes finally realize that he is Claire, and Czes shrieks and runs away. Rachel considers him standing there, a far removal from how he'd been on the train. He smiles again, and suggests that they go eat at the speako; he needs a lady's advice anyway. Rachel reenters the speakeasy with Claire, and the two sit at a booth, placing their own orders.
Rachel asks what she should call him, and he says that he used to be called Claire Stanfield. Nowadays though, he goes by "Felix Walken." She does not have the courage to ask why he changed his name. Rachel asks what he wants advice on, and he says that he's in love with a woman but doesn't know how to confess to her. He assures Rachel that he isn't talking about her. Rachel retorts that he should learn the meaning of tact, but thanks him for the warning anyway.
The two talk about his situation, and Rachel eventually recommends that if he wants to figure out what she thinks of him, maybe she should send her a gift and a letter. Maybe something wearable - if the woman wears the clothing or accessory, it could be a sign of her favorable feelings. Claire exclaims that this is a great idea. He treats her to the meal by putting their lunch on Firo's tab.
After he leaves, Rachel finishes eating and exits the Alveare. At the same time, a group of four people enter the building - Firo, Isaac and Miria, and Czes. As the other three step inside, Czes lingers behind and asks if Claire is gone. Rachel nods, and Czes sighs in relief and and gives her a relaxed smile. Rachel grins as well. She comments that it looks like immortals aren't so different from regular humans after all. They can still be happy or scared...she'd thought that maybe they were a little beyond emotions like that. Czes snorts, and disappears into the shop. Alone, Rachel wonders what kind of woman "that monster" is in love with.
In 1933, Rachel takes an evening train back to New York. On the train, she spots the Lamia. Once she arrives in Little Italy, she makes her way to the President's office, where the President is holding court with Elean Duga, Nicholas Wayne, and Henry. Nicholas asks if something is wrong, and she mutters that she saw some unwelcome faces on the train. Elean asks who, and Rachel spits that they were the Lamia. The President gleefully exclaims over Christopher Shouldered and the Lamia travelling to New York, and assumes that they must be here to join up with the Larvae.
He wonders how Rachel recognized them, and she said that this was her first time seeing them in person. In fact, she'd first thought they were a circus troupe - but then she'd remembered the rumors she'd heard during her travels. Looking as strange as they do, it'd be hard for someone not to recognize them. The President asks if Christopher was with them, and she confirms that he was. She admits that the group reminded her of her time aboard the Flying Pussyfoot, and the President continues questioning her about them.
It is implied that by this time, Rachel has indeed become an information broker - gathering information by travelling all across the continent via the railroads.
In February 1935, Rachel, Nicholas, Henry, and Elean gather in the President's office and review what they know about the upcoming casino party at Ra's Lance. Rachel contributes to the discussion by inquiring about the importance of Nader Schasschule, whose name has cropped up multiple times in the Daily Days' gathered intel documents.
The President of the Daily Days - Rachel considers the Director of the Daily Days a strange man, but she does not dislike him. She takes note of his eccentricities, but tries not to think too hard about them. He often asks Rachel questions about the city completely out of the blue; he claims that he asks in order to 'identify information that is difficult to identify at first glance.'
Felix Walken - Rachel first met him as the Rail Tracer, and was initially terrified of him. She doubts that he is even human on the train, and calls him the "ultimate monster" of the ordeal. The anime omits an important meeting between them on the train - a meeting that first allows her to see Claire as something approaching human. She is even willing to give him advice on his love life later on - during which time she regards him as completely insensitive.
Claire told her that had he not met Chane Laforet and proposed to her already, he might have fallen in love with Rachel instead.
Czeslaw Meyer - Rachel's conversation with Czes in January 1932 changes her life completely. The two seem to be on at least mildly friendly terms by the end of their conversation.
Henry - Rachel considers Henry arrogant and pretentious, and doesn't particularly care for him. However, he once told her that "information changes both the world and the fates of people," a statement that she comes to regard as absolutely right in 1932.
Nicholas Wayne - Nicholas and Rachel are colleagues. In the anime, he has a habit of teasing Rachel about her stowing away, though he ceases mocking her at the President's comments.
Rachel is physically fit and limber, able to move around and cling to the undersides of the Pussyfoot's cars with relative ease. This is owed to the fact that she spent many a day in her childhood clambering about the stationary trains in the yards. To make movement as easy as possible (and to protect her skin), she wears practical, functional coverall clothing when stowing away.
Rachel has at least some experience in basic combat, able to take down two or so Lemures during her rescue of the Beriams. She also keeps her nails serrated, in the event that she does not have a sharp object and needs to cut something.
As an field agent for the Daily Days, she also has good instincts and a sense for danger, with a strong will that allows her to only experience fear in the most extreme situations.
- Rachel is a red herring. Narita wants people to suspect her as the Rail Tracer, and makes a point of only referring to her as the woman in fatigues throughout the first half of the 1931 arc. Not to mention, Goose Perkins accuses her of being Vino at gunpoint.
- The anime dub undermines this effort a little by using masculine pronouns when discussing Claire, though less attentive viewers may miss the slip or simply forget about it by the time such info becomes relevant.
- Before her true identity is revealed, she is known only to the reader as "the woman in coveralls." 'Fatigues' and 'work wear' have also been used, but 'coveralls' is the noun used by the official Yen Press translation.
- The sequence of events starting with Rachel's rescue of Mary and Natalie and ending with Nice and Nick differs in the anime. In Episode 12, Rachel is not injured and captured by Spike immediately following her rescue of the Beriams, as per the novels. Instead, she moves along the train and looks upside down into a cabin window, where she finds Nice and Nick sitting with their hands tied behind their back. She unties their ropes moments before Spike opens the door, and buys Nice and Nick time to run into the next room by using her body weight to push the door back. Spike shoots and injures her as she makes her getaway through the window back onto the roof.
- The location of the gunshot injury also differs between the novel and anime: her thigh is injured in the former, and her lower left leg is injured in the latter.