Laura Bodewig (ラウラ ボーデヴィッヒ, Raura Bōdevihhi) is a 1st year transfer student at the IS Academy in Class One and the IS Representative Candidate of Germany. She was the first antagonist of the light novel and anime, and later becomes an ally Ichika Orimura. Laura is the 5th heroine to be introduced to the Infinite Stratos series.
She has long silver hair, a red right eye, and a black eye patch over her yellow left eye. She was the result of a failed nanomachine experiment that was meant to help her become a better IS pilot.
Her IS Academy uniform is modified version of the standard uniform, with baggy pants and high boots; this is befitting of her former post as an army officer. For her IS Practice and battles, she wears a gray version of the training uniform. At night, she now wears black cat pajamas that Charlotte got her. Ichika has remarked that Laura has a doll-like cuteness around her and has called her golden eye beautiful.
She is initially seen as a tough person who absolutely despised Ichika for (indirectly) making his sister, Chifuyu Orimura, forfeit the match Laura believed Chifuyu should have rightfully won. She has a major superiority complex surrounding her identity as a super soldier, as she often remarks that surrounding people's abilities are second-rate. She insulted Cecilia Alcott and Lingyin Huang during their first fight, saying that she has a hard time believing people like them possess 3rd Generation IS's. She comments that they come from countries that boasts of numbers but no talent (Lingyin), or whose only redeeming quality is their ancient culture (Cecilia). Despite her arrogance, she can acknowledge when she been beaten or outclassed, both shown after her first encounter with M where she admitted that she and Cecilia wouldn't be able to catch M or beat her if they could.
Despite that complex of hers, she idolizes Chifuyu to the point of worship. When she is first introduced she often seen trying to persuade Chifuyu to leave the IS Academy and return to Germany, as she believed her skills are being sullied by the students and staff who don't appreciate her and that she should be the only one who can train under her.
Having been raised in the army, she does not understand the workings of a normal life, seen as when she calls Ichika her "Bride", and when she comments that two hours of seiza is nothing compared to torture (Ichika wondered what counts as torture). Similarly to Houki, Laura is rather shy when it comes to her looks despite her pride. While never having been interested in her looks or clothes before, she started thinking about them more in order to get Ichika's attention. When she does, she becomes very happy and unfocused on everything else except what Ichika has said to her. Strangely, she doesn't mind being naked in front of him.
Laura is quite honest and straightforward with her thoughts and intentions; she will usually come out and say what she is trying to do instead of hiding it. A good example would be when she kissed Ichika right in front of the entire Class One right after falling in love with him. This self-confidante is usually envied by the other girls, as they were too embarrassed to admit to their feelings or reason while she wasn't. Although, she still can be shy sometimes when trying something new like wearing a swimsuit or a dress.
- Ichika Orimura - At first she completely despises him. Ichika believed she blamed him for Chifuyu's forfeit of her win during the 2nd Mondo Grosso. However, it is later revealed that she could not forgive the fact that a person existed who would make her strong and radiant role model display a soft and tender (i.e: weak) expression. Upon learning Ichika's strength is his freedom to choose and helping those around him and Chifuyu's advice, Laura decides to become Ichika's bodyguard to protect him against the other girls as while making him her "Wife" (a misunderstanding of her knowledge of Japanese culture. In some fansubs the word "wife" is used; she uses the term "yome", which means "bride".). After consoling her in the sub space, she realizes how special Ichika really is and falls in love with him. Later on, Ichika assists Charlotte in helping Laura adjust to a new social life which she did not experience in Germany.
- Chifuyu Orimura - Ichika's older sister. Laura was under Chifuyu's tutelage when the latter was in the German army and holds Chifuyu in high regard as Chifuyu helped her and was her role model when she suffered a depression for not being the strongest. She still refers to her as "Instructor" when she arrived at the IS Academy. She does care about Chifuyu opinion on her and became very devastated when she told her she didn't want her as a sister-in-law.
- Charlotte Dunois - Oil and water at first, Charlotte became her roommate once she reveals her true gender to the class. They are quite close, as Charlotte is somewhat of her counterpart, and has been teaching her social skills that she was not taught during her army life. Despite acknowledging Laura as an official rival, Charlotte is willing to help Laura win Ichika's heart, but the two girls remain very close with one another, to the point where Laura starts becoming more soft-spoken, and where the two treat each other like sisters, sharing secrets and stories at night in their own room in the light novels.
- Tatenashi Sarashiki - Laura doesn't like Tatenashi, to a point where she even threatens Tatenashi with a knife when Tatenashi goes to tickle her (Laura has the "It's about to go down" look whenever she sees Tatenashi). Her reasons for disliking Tatenashi are due her preventing her (Laura) from sneaking into Ichika's room (which Ichika admits he more happy about) and Tatenashi tickling habits.
Infinite Stratos & AbilitiesEdit
Having been designed and raised as a test-tube baby for the army, Laura possesses heightened reflexes and a great deal of military tactics to deal with more experienced soldiers that are older than her, even before her introduction and gaining an IS of her own. She very skilled in most unarmed and armed combat and is many other military fields. Her specially is with combat knives and is good enough to fight equally against Houki's swordsmanship.
Cecilia ranks Larua as the strongest of the main cast. She demonstrates this by easily defeating Cecilia and Lingyin, both being A-Rank representatives. She was also trained by Chifuyu Orimura, an accomplished pilot of her own right, which gives a testament of her skills. When the main cast had to use EOS, Laura was the only one who was able to pilot it and use it skilfully against the other.
- Odin's Eye - Also called the Eyes that Surpasses the World, it is a hyper-sensor package that heightens the nerve processing to the brain at an explosive speed. It allows reaction quickly in high-speed combat.
Laura possesses the darkest past of all 5 heroines, since she was a test-tube baby originally created to become a weapon. She was a part of Germany's super-soldier project, which aimed to create a perfect combatant. As such, she was educated with only what was needed to make her an excellent soldier; all the while being ignorant to things she would have learned as a normal child. She was educated with just enough social skills to be able to function as a soldier, which was clearly nowhere near enough to become a normal girl.
She excelled at all military training she received, and maintained the top rank until the introduction of IS.
With IS thrown into the equation, the project faced a heavy obstacle, since their subject (mainly Laura) was tuned for conventional warfare and the factor of IS was never calculated. They decide to re-tune Laura by replacing her left eye with an artificial one, a miniature (and heavily down-graded in order to fit into human body) version of the Hyper-sensor package.
With it, she was supposed to have boost in her sensory system, even when not enhanced by the IS. Coupled with the IS, this was to function as an additional conduit to enhance her response is IS piloting, resulting in a huge efficiency boost in IS operation.
The experiment, however, ended in a partial failure as the new eye installed malfunctioned and couldn’t be turned off when needed (she couldn't turn it off even if she wanted to) and as a result, Laura's performance not only as a IS pilot but as a soldier began to deteriorate.
Being raised with the sole purpose of being an excellent soldier, she was devastated when she couldn't keep up with other IS pilots, who began to treat Laura as a defect and not as a comrade. This is when Laura first met Chifuyu, who agreed to become a temporary IS instructor in the German military in return for their help in finding the location of the kidnapped Ichika during the 2nd Mondo Grosso tournament. To Laura, Chifuyu appeared to be the ultimate goal that she should pursuit, and with Chifuyu's help, Laura was able to recover and retake the top rank in her unit.
From that point on, Laura developed a fanatical admiration toward Chifuyu, to the point of almost being worship. However, once when she asked her how to become strong, Chifuyu answered that she has a brother and revealed a soft and tender expression. Laura who had been raised to believe in strength and toughness and that softness is for the weak could not condone Chifuyu showing such an expression towards anyone and resolved to defeat Ichika, whom she viewed as the reason for Chifuyu's "weakness".
Laura was introduced to the series as a transfer student from Germany. After introducing her name, Laura immediately walks up to Ichika and slaps him, declaring she will not recognize him as Chifuyu's brother.
The fight has started and Ichika immediately went on to strike first at Laura, but is stopped by her AIC. As Laura prepared to shoot Ichika while he's paralyzed, Charles appeared behind Ichika and counter-attacks Laura with her Rapid Switch but Houki interferes stating that she won't have them forget about her. Laura feels that Houki is in her way so she used her tentacles to remove her out of her business against the boys. While Ichika and Laura fight, Charles defeats Houki first and resumes his battle against Laura.
During the fight, they discover the AIC's weakness: Laura can only focus on stopping one enemy per time. They then use different "sacrifice-and-attack" combos to slowly defeat her. Ichika got his energy shield exhausted and Laura takes advantage to pin him down to the ground but Charles keeps protecting him with his Ignition Boost, stating that it's the first time he's using it. Charles then used his Shield Pierce weapon to brutally punch Laura's shield multiple time and exhaust her armor. Laura, fainting, is suddenly consumed by her IS and transforms into a large dark mech that matches Chifuyu's fighting style. Angry about this, Ichika decides to fight against it but Houki holds him back telling him that he doesn't have to do anything and the matter will be resolved by the instructors troop. Ichika still refuses and Charles offers him enough energy to manifest his sword, making him promise that if he loses, he'll have to wear a female uniform to school starting the next day, embarrassing Ichika and Houki. After Ichika gets enough energy, he goes to cut through the mech and save Laura.
In the subspace (Laura's unconsciousness), Laura asks Ichika why is he strong, and why had he chosen to be strong. Ichika responds by saying he wants to protect people important to him and that he'll protect Laura. She wakes up and finds herself on a bed in the hospital with Chifuyu besides her. The teacher starts explaining about the VT System (Valkyrie Trace System), a research banned under the IS Treaty and it was equipped on Laura's IS. Chifuyu then asks who Laura Bodewig was, and that if she's nobody in particular, then it's fine but she will have to become the Laura Bodewig from now on. Chifuyu leaves and says that Laura cannot become her, making the girl laugh happily by herself.
The next day, Charles introduced herself to the class under the name of "Charlotte" Dunois, shocking the whole class. As everyone knew Ichika and Charlotte used the Boys' Bath the night before, Lingyin charges into the class with her IS to jealously attack Ichika, probably jealous that he bathed with another girl than her, but is stopped by Laura's AIC. Ichika thanks her but is suddenly pulled over by Laura as she French kisses him in front of the whole class, shocking Cecilia, Lingyin, Houki and all of the girls. Laura states that Ichika will be her 'wife'(a mistake on her part due to not understanding Japanese/social customs), and that it is final and that she won't hear any objections. Ichika and the girls are once again shocked.
Ichika wakes up and feels another pair of legs. Shocked, he pulls off the blanket and discovers Laura sleeping naked. As Ichika screams, Laura wakes up and exposes the rest of her body, prompting Ichika to tell her to hide "those". Laura says that spouses shouldn't hide anything from each other and she thought in Japan you'd call someone you like as "My wife" (ore no yome) or "My wife" (jibun wo). Realizing that Laura misunderstands the Japanese culture, he points at her and asks who's the idiot feeding her false information, prompting Laura to grab his arm and pin him down. She then changes topic saying that she should train Ichika in pinning techniques and that it's not like she won't help him. Ichika, struggling, asks why Laura's blushing. Meanwhile, Houki knocks at the door telling Ichika it's time for morning practice and that it's not because it's Sunday that he can slack off. As she walks in and see's Ichika and the naked Laura on the bed, she froze in a shocked/speechless manner, dropping her shinai. Seeing Houki, Laura comments how rude she is for invading the bedroom of a married couple. Pissed and shocked, Houki takes her shinai and punishes Ichika with her Heaven Punishment move.
Cecilia and Lingyin along with Laura, stalk Ichika and Charlotte through the shopping mall to learn about their relationship. While looking for Ichika and Charlotte, who disappears into a swimsuits boutique, they spot Chifuyu and Maya give them a moral lesson in the middle of the boutique about drawing a line even as classmates. Meanwhile, Laura calls her Lieutenant Clarissa, an avid fan of Japanese shojo manga, for swimsuits suggestions.
At the beach, Maya tells everybody to enjoy themselves and to return to the inn in time for dinner.
Charlotte gets to Ichika and presents a girl with an eye patch wrapped in towel, to which Ichika freaks out and calls her the Bath Towel Monster. Ichika discovers it's Laura by her voice. After Charlotte purposely teases her that she'll have fun with Ichika without her if she doesn't show her swimsuit, Laura removes the towel and exposes her black swimsuit, telling that they can laugh if they want. They then tells her that there's nothing funny about it and Ichika says that she's cute, making Laura blush, saying that it's the first time anyone had said that to her.
Honne and her friends then ask Ichika to keep his long awaited promise: beach volleyball. As they play, Laura gets so obsessed by the fact that Ichika calls her cute that she gets hit in the face by the ball. As Ichika gets close to ask if she's alright, Laura blushes even more and runs away. She then had fun with the others for the rest of the day, occasionally blushing when Charlotte presents Laura's swimsuit to the other girls.
- "I will not accept that you are her brother. I shall never accept it!"
- Laura to Ichika after slapping him at their first encounter (Episode 5)
- Laura: "Y...You'll be my Husband! This is final. I won't hear any objections!"
- Laura to Ichika after kissing him (Episode 8)
- The name "Bodewig" is actually the last name of Kurt Bodewig, a German politician who was the Federal Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure from 2000 to 2002.
- Her appearance and background could refer to the viewers of the anime Axis Powers: Hetalia as Prussia as the creator of the series, Hidekaz Himaruya personified the countries during World War II and had gender-bended the countries as if they were different people and the gender-bended persona of Prussia was a female with long silver hair and red eyes (minus the yellow left eye), due to the country being an albino and of German descent, although both anime having no relation with each other.
- The eye patch may be a reference to Claus von Stauffenberg, a German Army officer who tried to kill Adolf Hitler during the 20 July plot in 1944 (which was made into the movie Valkyrie).
- Her relationship with Charlotte is a historical inside joke based on the real relationship between France and Germany: They were enemies at the beginning (which is shown in several scenes in the anime where they insult each others countries), but established the "Franco-German Friendship" after the Second World War. Similar to Charlotte's and Laura's friendship which only started to bloom after a particular event.
- Her IS is a possible throwback to Throne Eins of the anime Gundam 00, with her rail gun in the similar manner and position as the GN Mega Launcher.
- So far, Laura is the only person to have kissed Ichika on the lips. Both of them have said that was their first kiss for both of them.
- Her locker is filled with knives.
- The girl that Ichika met in his dream has a striking resemblance to Laura (when seen from the back).
- Her character design is probably based on Cinque from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS onwards. They both wear eyepatches and have a golden left eye. Despite this, Laura covers her left eye while Cinque covers her right.
- Laura's IS Schwarzer Regen resembles a black hare, likely a reference to her unit Schwarze Hase (Black Hare Corps).
- Laura is a Captain in the German Army.
- She has a similar personality with Accelerator from To Aru Majutsu no Index. At first both characters are cold and borderline sadistic, but as the story progresses their personalities change.
- She's the only girl to have slept with Ichika on the same bed.
- Her IS in standby mode is a garter belt on her right leg, revealed when Ichika found her sleeping on his bed.
- Laura seems to want to have children someday and possibly raise a family with Ichika. She made note of this both in volume 8 about her delusion and in Season 2, episode 11 when wishing at the shrine.
- As seen in volume 8, Laura's ideal world is one in which she lives together with Ichika as a married couple. She also wants to raise a family with three children. She has made reference to this by how she's claimed Ichika and her are a married couple.
- She has a similar appearance to Sieg