|“||Explosives were set in roughly three hundred locations. It isn’t clear how many casualties have resulted, but the concurrent kidnappings occurred in neighboring Chicago as well, with more than two hundred people simultaneously disappearing from the surrounding areas. The situation has the residents of Illinois visibly uneasy...||”|
–Excerpt from a contemporary news broadcast on the 1934 incidents, 1934 Alice in Jails: Prison
Elleson Hill (エルソン・ヒル Eruson Hiru) is a rural Chicago-adjacent town which serves as a base for various facilities owned by the Nebula Corporation. In December 1934 the town was the target of a serial bombing attack and alongside Chicago involved in the simultaneous mass disappearance of two hundred people, incidents which received national news coverage at the time.
History and Infrastructure
Elleson Hill is situated on the vast plains outside Chicago, corralling what little land it devotes to agriculture behind tall, intentionally obscuring fences. Its infrastructure mainly consists of residential and industrial buildings connected by wide roads; although the residential buildings are densely clustered in one area of the town, the vast majority of the town's buildings are otherwise built at "some distance from one another."
Where some facilities are isolated, many do share enclosures with one or two other related buildings. These enclosed clusters are organized by research type, each cluster connecting back to various different branch companies within the Nebula conglomerate. It is rumored among local children that some of the buildings are home to dangerous, "sketchy" experiments, making the distance between buildings and building clusters a 'safety measure' in case any of the buildings suffer a catastrophic accident.
The facilities themselves range in industrial purposes, including warehouses, factories, and research laboratories. All bear the Nebula logo, as do the trucks which have been spotted entering and leaving buildings across the town. Most of the town's residents appear to be Nebula personnel, with one Martillo Family member quoting sixty percent of the town's population as a minimum estimate; without any census data or other official records, it remains unclear how accurate that estimate is.
While the town itself only nominally registers on local maps, its status as a Nebula town is something already relatively well known across the country prior to the 1934 bombings.
1934 Serial Bombings and Kidnappings
At precisely noon on a certain day in December 1934, three hundred timed bombs simultaneously explode across Elleson Hill. Only Nebula-affiliated facilities suffer damage, and as such the bombings are deemed a deliberate act of terrorism against the Nebula Corporation.
In addition to the bombings, Elleson Hill is also involved in the concurrent mass disappearance of two hundred people throughout Chicago and its surrounding areas. Elleson Hill and Chicago residents alike are riddled with anxiety in the wake of such unprecedented incidents, which thrust both the town and city into the national spotlight when they are reported on via radio broadcasts across the country.
Local police immediately launch an investigation into the bombings and kidnappings, starting with a working assumption that attacks on this scale could have only been perpetrated by a large-scale organization. The police are swift to suspect Placido Russo—don of the local Russo Family mafia—as deeply involved in both incidents, with Placido himself having conspicuously gone missing not long before the bombings occurred. Their subsequent manhunt for Placido is also reported on across the country, with other criminal organizations like the Martillos paying close attention to the radio broadcasts.
The true mastermind behind the Elleson Hill bombings was in actuality Rail, who desired revenge against Nebula for having captured their friend Frank half a day earlier. The bombs themselves were planted by various vessels of Rail's accomplice Sham, whose help Rail had enlisted and was necessary for the plan's success. Meanwhile, the primary culprit of the kidnappings was Renee Parmedes Branvillier—one of Nebula's very own employees, who desired Hilton's vessels for her own purposes. For this, too, Sham was an accomplice; it was he who identified Hilton's vessels to Renee's team.
As a major consequence of the uproar in Elleson Hill and Chicago, Huey Laforet decides to pause his Chicago experiment and carry it out in New York City instead.
- The roar of all three hundred explosions is so loud that it is heard over in Chicago.
- Prior to the Yen Press translations of the light novels, the town's name was alternatively referred to as "Elsen's Hill" and "Elson Hill."