The Peripheral recently shed some light on the backstories of Wilf and Aelita, revealing a key bit of info about the relationship they share.
The Peripheral begins with Wilf and Aelita meeting under what seemed like surreal circumstances with an unfamiliar landscape looming large in the background.
Some things were established right off the bat and one of them was the evident strong bond that they share, or at least did once.
Aelita also talked about saving him but that was never expanded upon further than that.
More importantly, the nature of their relationship was a mystery, and the ambiguity was cranked up higher because she was visibly an adolescent while Wilf was an adult.
Wilf and Aelita’s relationship
Wilf and Aelita are brother and sister, but they’re siblings not by blood but by a bond just as strong. They were two orphans that grew up together and were picked up by an orphanage together.
Their bond has always been strong, with the flashback to their adoption (episode 3) showing how Aelita refused to go with the foster parents without Wilf.
Aelita was 27 days shy of ten years old and Wilf was eight when they were adopted, together, after Mr and Mrs West from Oxfordshire adopted the bonded pair.
Aelita refers to Wilf as Wolf, as that was his original name, short for Wolfgang. However, Mr West wasn’t keen on the name and instead, immediately imposed his wish to rename him, Wilfred.
Wilf seems hesitant about the idea at first but eventually gives his approval for the name change. This earns him a concerned/upset look from Aelita, who’s surprised because she’s protective of him.
Estranged parents and a distant drift
Aelita and Wilf’s parents haven’t had a lot of screentime but in whatever amount they do have, it’s made sufficiently clear that the nature of their relationship isn’t exactly the warmest.
Mrs West has a certain sense of disappointment for her children, especially for Wilf, who she was never really fond of from the get-go.
It’s Aelita who admittedly grabbed her attention from the start, but the kind of affinity Mrs West has for Aelita is shown to not be the kind that’s reciprocated by her foster daughter.
In The Peripheral episode 3, it’s revealed that Wilf and Aelita are so estranged from their foster parents that they didn’t even attend Mr West’s funeral.
While they stay away from their parents because their relationship with them is sour, the two siblings have also grown apart, but because of a reason that has been left ambiguous in the show so far.
The chase to reunite
Wilf has been hard at work trying to find Aelita, enlisting Flynne’s help to do so, with little success so far. Lev enlisted him for the job because he shares a relationship and a personal vested interest in the quest.
Wilf keeps getting closer, with his chase for Aelita giving rise to some perilous turn of events.
However, he moves ahead still and amid his personal interests, there’s a concentrated effort to track Aelita down, courtesy of not one but many wealthy and powerful parties in the London of the future.