Name: Eliot Spencer Age/Date of Birth:37 Sexuality: Heteroflexible Fandom: Leverage Medium: TV Show Canon point: 5x15 "The Long Good-bye Job" Alternates?: Maybe. If asked. Housing:
PB: Christian Kane
One time only. No encores. Eliot Spencer's reputation said he worked alone and on the off chance he did work with a crew, it was a one shot. He'd seen enough betrayal in his line of work and didn't plan on dying before he had to because he trusted the wrong person. When he was hired as part of a retrieval job by Victor Dubenich, Eliot expected to do the job and walk away. Instead, he got Nathan Ford, Parker, Alec Hardison, and later on, Sophie Devereaux. First a team, then a little more than a team.
As a retrieval specialist, Eliot has worked both sides of the law. Sent to retrieve information, items, and people, he's been all over the world and picked up things along the way. Pieces of languages, knowledge, scars. He's seen in the insides of prisons that would offend any human rights activist and has been subjected to torture. One time over a stolen monkey.
Eliot doesn't like guns. In his hands, they're a weapon where its killed or be killed. The man he was when he used them is the man he doesn't want to be anymore, but carries the memories of the past around with him. The first thing he'll do in a fight is make sure they're taken out of it, usually by ejecting the clip and the round in the chamber. However, he does know weapons, hinting at a military background, and can identify a gun by the sound it makes. It's a very distinctive sound. His knowledge extends to the identification of fight styles. Also distinctive. He knows his hand to hand combat, as well as being able to fight with knives and, once in a while, swords.
While he can fight with the best, Eliot will try to negotiate when on the job. But in his line of work, more of than not, he is fighting for his survival, taking whatever he's dealt and giving back more. Short tempered, he works at restraint and control, although in the worst situations, the effect is like "taking the safety off a gun", according to Sophie. Under his moral code, he doesn't like to hit innocent civilians (ex. police officers) for doing their job. But he will if it is his absolute last option.
He seems perpetually annoyed at the world, sometimes with the people he works with. But he'd do anything to make sure any threat to their lives is eliminated. No matter how much he might not understand them or how much they irritate him, they're still the very few that he would trust at his back.
Eliot Spencer's life started out relatively normal. The oldest of three children, a firm ex-military father, a supportive mother, living in a town where news traveled faster by mouth than by the paper. He was the popular high school quarterback, a decent student, protective of his younger siblings, and spent his summers working at a racing stable for a friend of his father's, Willie Martin. It was during that time that he fell in love with Martin's daughter, Aimee.
After graduation, Eliot joined the army. After basic training, he continued training to join the Special Forces. A few years into his military career, Eliot disappeared, no record of why or where he'd gone. In that time, he began building up a reputation as a retrieval specialist and hitter.
Eliot's new profession had him working on both sides of the law. He built up a reputation for getting things done quickly, quietly, and efficiently. The jobs he worked were dangerous, earning more than a few enemies in the process. Some of the things he "retrieved" earned him the attention of IYS Insurance and future boss Nathan Ford, as well as several bounties, warrants, and hits on his head.
When Victor Dubenich offered him three hundred thousand to help steal back plans from a competing aviation company, Eliot expected it to be a one and done job. As it turned out, the plans hadn't been stolen, they'd just stolen them. To add insult to injury, Dubenich set them up to be killed, and when that failed, to be arrested and take the fall for the crime. Under Nate Ford's guidance, Eliot, Alec Hardison, Parker, and newcomer Sophie Devereaux turned the game on Dubenich, using his arrogance to cost his company millions.
In the aftermath, he started to realize it didn't feel half bad working with a team of professionals who did their job well to right a couple of wrongs. When Eliot got the call a few months later to head to Los Angeles, he found himself a member of Leverage Consulting and Associates, the cover story for their crew. Nate found the clients, masterminded the plan, and they carried it off. Eliot found out that helping people didn't feel half bad.
The last thing he expected was a call from Willie Martin. His barn had been burned, all but one horse perished in the fire, and the insurance company was looking to blame him. Nate agreed to help Eliot help an old friend, which became tricky when it put him up against an old IYS coworker, James Sterling, who knew each member of the team almost as well as Nate did. It also led to the first time Eliot and Aimee had seen each other in years. After an angry confrontation, the two worked things out enough that when the job was done and Eliot left, they were in a better place.
All hell broke loose when Nate took his team up against Blackpoole, Sterling, and his former employers. Sophie manipulated the team to get her hands on Blackpoole's David to go with the one she had stolen from the Vatican years earlier while motivating Nate to take revenge on his boss. It put Eliot in an awkward position, when he found out the woman he was flirting with at Blackpoole's party was Nate's ex, and then in a painful position, as Sterling discovered the game and sent another hitter after Eliot. Eliot managed to win the fight and get away to help Nate free Hardison from Sterling's men. After destroying the office and any evidence, the team agreed to split for six months.
Eliot ended up back in Los Angeles after three. The need to get revenge against Blackpoole was too much to ignore. So he managed to get hired as security for Blackpoole's gallery, only to run into Sophie, Hardison, and Parker. The four of them managed to trip up each other and it was only by Nate's well-timed arrival that they escaped. When asked why they came back, Eliot replied bluntly that he quit the crew when he quit the crew. No one was going to run him off.
As they worked on the next phase of the plan, Eliot confronted Sophie for her part in their near capture three months earlier, earning a not quite apology out of her that he accepted. Although he wasn't quick to forget. The plan was pulled off, Blackpoole ruined, and the team once again decided to split. This time for good.
It didn't last long. When Sophie won the leading role in the Sound of Music, she managed to track down all four of them to invite them to the play. They all showed up, surprised to see the other. Eliot, used to Sophie's brand of acting, couldn't give a good reason for why he'd shown up for another play. The truth was, he'd missed the team. Doing good had gotten under his skin and the mess that Nate had stumbled into that day was the perfect excuse to bring the team back together.
Which, after convincing a newly sober Nate, was exactly what they did. Their first job together, they exposed a scam a banker was running with the Irish mob. Once Nate was back on board, the team took it as a sign he was back and turned part of his loft into their office. Eliot personally cut another door into Nate's wall, much to the mastermind's dismay. After that, the team upped their game, traveling to Nebraska to exact payback on a corrupt gym manager who was putting the competition out of commission, literally. Eliot stepped into the ring to fight, taking down the manager's golden boy. Soon after, he was playing gym teacher to help a kid find his talent. As it turned out, sports weren't his thing. The team did manage to give him his moment in the spotlight while exposing his father's trust fund scheme.
From making a con man believe he was coming down with a deadly disease to reveal where he'd stashed his cash, to bringing down a corrupt VP at a food company, to exposing a scandal causing, reputation ruining reporter, the team continued to rack up wins. Until they ran up against a mirror team, headed up by an old friend of Sophie's. After faking her death when she was set up with a bomb, the team took on the opposing team. Eliot met his opposition in Mikal Dyan, a former Mossad Agent with an impressive reputation. When the team ran distraction, Eliot fought Mikal but the two found they'd rather be doing other things.
Sophie's need to find herself left the team with one member less. Much to Eliot's annoyance, an attempt to put Hardison in the grifer position led to them scrambling to save him from overzealous Russians. Despite his protests that he wouldn't come to his rescue if he was captured, Eliot did just that, proving that the team was becoming more of a family to him than he let on. Even moreso when Sophie sent her friend Tara to fill in while she traveled. Eliot had a hard time trusting the new grifter but tried to remain professional. He was ready for the moment she stepped out of line, but instead she proved that she wasn't only a trustworthy ally, but an early warning system in case Nate went off the rails.
When Nate began drinking again, his plans started to become riskier and riskier. Eliot remained loyal to him while reminding him that if he screwed up too much, he'd get them in trouble. Or worse. The team's problems grew worse when the mayor they tried to con turned out to be a federal witness. The FBI and James Sterling once again on their tail, the team hid in the same hotel that the FBI had taken the mayor to for protection. After a risky kidnapping, Eliot and Parker hit the docks, looking for clues. It was Eliot's observation of a detective's notes and a ship that led to the discovery of the mayor's partner in crime.
Faking the mayor's death, Nate managed to get a meeting with the arms dealer he'd partnered with while Eliot came along to play the muscle. While Nate ran distraction, Eliot snuck out to find a signal. Unfortunately, their con was blown and Eliot was taken down - temporarily. The hitter regained his wits and took down each of the men he'd counted on the way in, ending with the last that held Nate. After freeing him, the team captured the arms dealer and attempted to make their escape, with a newly arrived Sophie in tow and providing the way out. Which was right about when the FBI and Sterling showed up. Nate stepped forward to bargain himself for his team while Eliot reluctantly hustled Parker, Hardison, and Sophie to the helicopter Sophie had alerted.
Instead of leaving, Eliot stayed with the team and contributed to the plan to break Nate out of jail. The hitter was annoyed with the mastermind, feeling that he'd conned the team as much as he'd saved them. With a subtle threat about what would happen if he tried pulling something over on them again, Eliot then relayed the plan to help a client Nate had found - in jail.
Breaking Nate out of jail came with a price, blackmailing by a mysterious woman only known as The Italian. They either took down Damien Moreau or Nate went back to jail and the team picked off one by one by "perils" in their line of work. The choice was clear, despite Eliot's misgivings of The Italian's motivations and going up against a very brutal opponent. So the team came up with a plan. Instead of hit Moreau head on, to take on jobs that would lead to him.
With Nate back, the team started taking on clients again. One con found Eliot as the "fiddle" as they ran the Fiddle Game on a music producer with a cruel streak. To the team's surprise, Eliot could sing and accumulated several fans during their stay in Memphis. In another, he had to pose as Santa to help stop an old enemy for ruining Christmas for a lot of shoppers. With each con, the team drew a step closer to Moreau.
When the Italian arrived to tell the team that Moreau was going to be in Washington to auction off a bomb, they moved into action. Eliot had no choice but to reveal that at one time, he'd worked for Moreau. During that time, he'd done things that still haunted him, things that he was never proud of and eventually led to him leaving for the retrieval business. But he couldn't leave it behind completely. When Moreau's men cornered Nate and the Italian with him in a warehouse, Eliot revisited his past, picking up guns once again to take out the opposition and pave the way for the mastermind to escape. After, he asked Nate not to tell anyone what had gone down in the warehouse, concerned with how they would view him if they knew.
The next two years flew by with the emergence of old enemies, teaming up with odd allies, even diverting a terrorist attack. Through it all, Eliot came to realize he had changed from the man he'd been when they had first been hired by Dubenich. He'd come to rely on and trust the team at his back to the point where he would lay his life down on the line if it meant they got away safely. When Nate and Sophie finally decided to step down from the game for a while, find some normalcy in their lives, Eliot swore to them that he would protect Parker and Hardison without fail.
Starting with his military training and continuing to pick things up as he traveled, Eliot has learned and become proficient in several combat styles and knife work. He's also trained in retrieval, extraction, and negotiation. As a hitter, he knows several ways to take a life, including a few to make it look like natural causes or an accident.