|Julie Sims Mackay|
| 1632 series |
POD: May, 1631
|Nationality:||United States of Europe (born in the United States)|
|Date of Birth:||1982|
|Children:||Alexi Sims Mackay|
Julie Sims was the daughter of Grantville dentist Henry Sims, and a niece of Frank Jackson. She was a skilled marksman, and had been training for the Olympic biathlon before the Ring of Fire. She was also a cheerleader; she could very easily shut off this boundless energy and embrace calculated pragmatism when needed. Indeed, she was one of a handful of women capable of passing the physical requirements of the Grantville army.
In 1631, Julie caught the attention of Scottish mercenary Captain Alexander Mackay, the first European soldier to ally with Grantville. Julie had a boyfriend, Chip Jenkins, at the time. After the the call for enlistment went out, Sims became one of a few women who successfully enlisted in the army. Already an excellent marksman, she received additional training from Dr. James Nichols, a former Marine who'd dropped out of sniper school. Julie's first test came at the Battle of Jena, where she impressed Mackay further (although her uncle and Mike Stearns both expressed concerns about whether Julie could emotionally distance herself to be a functional sniper.)
Julie became a hero to her fellow soldiers, save for Jenkins, who was seen sulking shortly after the battle. After a speaking with Rebecca Abrabanel, Julie broke up with Jenkins (whom no one had liked, anyway), and began a tentative relationship with Mackay. By April, 1632, that relationship had blossomed into an engagement, after Mackay was promoted to Colonel by Gustavus Adolphus.
Envoy to Gustavus AdolphusEdit
In April, 1632, Gustavus Adolphus requested a meeting with these fabled Americans. Rebecca Abrabanel, now Rebecca Stearns, agreed to lead an embassy. Julie (despite Macakay's protests) insisted on joining the group, which also included Ed Piazza and Tom and Rita Simpson. Part of the mission was to assure Gustavus the reports he'd heard were true. The other part was to show that the Americans were not witches, or any other sort of threat. Despite some uneasiness (Rebecca was pregnant), Mike Stearns agreed to the mission.
Upon meeting her, Gustavus Adolphus concluded that Julie, at least, could not be a witch.
Sims demonstrated her marksmanship the next day during the Battle of Rain. Gustavus had initially been dismissive of her skills and her weapons. She briefly took umbrage at his condescension, and matter of factly proved her skills.
Sims was very informal and matter-of-fact while interacting with the king. She suggested Gustavus should wear glasses, and recommended goggle-style spectacles when Gustavus explained that normal spectacles would fall off in battle. Gustavus grew outraged. In an attempt to mollify him, Julie let him look through her scope, which did impress him.
Upon their return to Grantville, Mackay was promoted to colonel, and immediately proposed to Julie, who accepted. Mackay was called away to battle in August, 1632, and requested that Julie stay in Grantville.
She learned that she was pregnant with Mackay's child the day before the Croat raid on Grantville. She was very worried about Mackay's response, as he was born illegitimate, and was sensitive about social stigma of being a bastard child.
Sims was at Grantville High School when word came of the impending Croat attack. Dr. James Nichols secured two .30-06 rifles and ammunition, and loaded for Julie as she systematically picked off any raiders. Fortunately, Gustavus Adolphus had pieced together information about the Grantville raid, and led a rescue mission. Just as fortunately, she was able to recognize him at a distance. Following the end of the onslaught, Julie confronted Gustavus and criticized him for his reckless behavior, then emotionally thanked him with a hug.
Julie informed Alex that she was pregnant. Gustavus "ordered" their immediate marriage. He also bestowed a title on Julie, making a baroness of some land in Finland.
A month after their marriage, at the Battle of Alte Veste, Julie shot Albrecht von Wallenstein, Gustavus's primary enemy through the jaw. Wallenstein had also arranged the Croat raid. Only the tremendous distance between them saved Wallenstein. One of Julie's shots inadvertently hit and instantly killed Matthias Gallas. Subsequent events actually saw Wallenstein ally himself with the New United States.
In 1633, Julie married Alexander Mackay. They had a daughter in short order. The Mackays then traveled to Scotland and accommodated with the extended Mackay family. This move was tactical as well as sentimental; Grantville was preparing to send a delegation to London, and NUS President Mike Stearns wanted the Mackays in place to help the delegation if needed. Stearns' concerns proved valid; Charles I had grown paranoid about Grantville, and ordered the embassy held in the Tower of London.
Julie and Mackay reconnected with Harry Lefferts and his rescue party in planning a escape for the Grantville delegation in London. During the escaped, Julie provided covering fire, killing the Tower's guardsmen from the opposite side of the Thames River. She and Alex later traveled with half of the escapees including Oliver Cromwell to flee to Scotland, in order to avoid pursuit from the English authorities.