Lanny

Background

Leap Day 1988, Chicago saw the birth of a baby girl, much like any other. The new parents wanted their baby girl to stand out in a crowd, and so they named her February Marlene Lancaster - Rue among family. Though by junior high, the girl was calling herself Lanny. Lanny's mother saw some success in finding commercial work for her baby girl - she was the poster child for a local diaper service for roughly two years. Perhaps that would set the tenor for the girl in later years. Being named for Marlene Dietrich certainly only fostered the notion of stardom as something she could be destined for. But unlike her middle-namesake, where Dietrich had been blonde and of middling height, Lanny had red hair and shot up like a beanpole. She grew up admiring her Aunt - actually her father's cousin - Adrianne, who was in the Air Force, and travelled the world. Lanny wanted to see the world as well, but knew jumping from planes wasn't quite her style. She spent many long hours babbling away excitedly to her best friend Samara when she would receive a postcard from some exotic location. Though for Lanny, Amarillo, Texas felt exotic compared to Chicago.

Each generation witnesses some event that seems to reshape the very world around them. Something that impacts a person so, that they can tell you years later where they were, and what they were doing, the moment they heard the news of the tragedy. Pearl Harbor. The assassination of JFK. On September 11, 2001, Lanny was in first period Social Studies, receiving a lecture from the instructor after she and Samara were caught passing notes to each other when the PA system crackled to life and they were informed that a plane had struck one of the two towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. The thirteen-year-old girl reached across the aisle to hold her friend's hand as she watched in horror as CNN played footage of the impact of the second plane. Much to her surprise, the world kept on spinning. Life went on. Not precisely as it had before, but things carried forward. School progressed, seasons progressed. Lanny's world as she knew it wouldn't end for another three years. Years of dabbling in modelling paid off when, at eighteen, Lanny was offered a contract that would take her to New York for a series of shoots, with the possibility of further work if her look turned enough heads. She excitedly talked her parents into allowing her to go, with Samara - herself a dancer, rather than a model - in tow to pursue her own prospects.

It was a crisp autumn day, and the two girls were exploring New York together, with a small group of friends they'd made in the city as their guides. On November 8, 2006, the world was tipped on its head again. And this time, the two friends were caught in the thick of it. There was a terrible crash, and panicked screams. Lanny can remember Samara throwing her arms around her, and then waking up in the hospital. She had been found on the edge of the blast radius. No one in her group survived the blast that ripped through Midtown Manhattan. Many of the bodies were too badly destroyed to be identified. Lanny's survival appeared to be a miracle. Even with Samara shielding her, it seemed Lanny's injuries should have been more extensive. The search for survivors and bodies dragged on while Lanny recovered from radiation poisoning. The first time Samara appeared to her, she was certain it was a dream. Then a symptom of her sickness. Her body was never recovered, but they both knew she had to be dead. A nurse would come in to check on Lanny, and take no note of Samara. At first, Lanny was convinced she was crazy. That Samara was no more than a figment of her guilty mind. As she saw it, if she hadn't lobbied so hard for Samara to share her adventure, her friend would still be alive.

Lanny returned to Chicago after her release from the hospital, and held Samara's hand at her own funeral, where they buried an empty coffin. Before long, Lanny checked herself into a mental health facility in hopes of ridding herself of the illusionary form of her friend. Lanny spent the better part of a year feeling like a zombie for all the medication she was given to quell her hallucinations. Therapy was to yield little result at first, until one night, Samara told Lanny that she was going to leave her. That despite her insistence that she was real - perhaps even a ghost of some sort - and some dismay over the prospect of wandering the world without a friend to talk to. Limited to the way people only seem to notice her as a brief flicker in a reflective surface - something Samara was quick to cite as a reason for how she must be a ghost. The way people around the hospital would quickly turn to catch the unexpected figure in the mirror Lanny's room. Despite this supposed proof, she did depart for a time, leaving Lanny to her medicated stupor and the therapists that would attempt to bring her to terms with the devastating loss of her friend.

As news of people with extraordinary abilities - they would later be called the Evolved - began to come to light in the months that would follow the explosion in Manhattan, Samara decided that Lanny must be among them. Her ability, as she saw it, was to see the dead. Returning to Lanny's side, she told her what she had learned and was able to convince Lanny that she had the ability Samara said she had. Though in truth, Samara was not a ghost at all. And Lanny was not Evolved. In fact, it was Samara who was Evolved. In the heat of the moment, facing down certain death, Samara's ability manifested herself. She phased seemingly out of existence, and took Lanny part of the way with her. However, such thoughts never crossed the mind of the two girls, and so they stuck to their working theory of Lanny's ability to see the dead. Reconciling Samara's existence, Lanny set about convincing her therapists that she was sane enough to check out of the hospital.

It was a brave new world that Lanny found herself in once she was off her medication and out amongst society once more. She gathered what funds she had and moved to New York with Samara. If there was any place where she would be able to discover more about her ability and others like her, the great melting pot of New York would be it. The city seemed to be, to Lanny, the forefront of all matters of Evolved affairs. Unfortunately, attempting to explain her ability usually resulted in strange looks. She isn't sure she'd believe someone telling her story, either. And so, she keeps mostly to herself about her ability. She swears up and down that the invention of the mobile phone is the greatest of the millennium, and Bluetooth is a godsend. Lanny gets by with constant public conversations with Samara by having her phone glued to her hand, and a receiver in her ear. To support herself, she models part-time when she can find the work, and has worked various other part-time positions around the city. She hopes she'll get her big break someday, so she can get her life back on track and fulfil her dreams to see the world.

Personality

  • Flashy - Sometimes, Lanny feels she has trouble getting people to notice her. As if she simply fades into the background of things easily. To counteract this, she likes to wear bright colours and quirky outfits and experiment with some crazy hair styles. She's been known to wear wigs just for the heck of it. Part of her affinity for loud colours is to brighten up Samara's drab purgatory world a little bit.
  • No Fate But What We Make - Lanny doesn't like to feel as though her road in life has already been laid out before her, and likes to feel as though she is stepping away from the beaten path as much as possible. If there's a destiny for her, she won't run from it. She'll just take many detours on her way to it.
  • Half of a Whole - Lanny rarely goes anywhere without Samara in tow. She's grown to rely upon her best friend to offer her her own unique insights. To this effect, she sometimes behaves more impulsively than her nature would otherwise lead her to, as she tends to follow Sami's excitable direction.
  • Thinking Out Loud - Even before Samara's death, and the subsequent haunting, Lanny had always been the type to take to talking things out, rather than internalising her monologue. She's grown adept at seeming as though she's only talking to herself, when she's generally soliciting Samara's opinions.
  • Noteworthy - In a similar vein, when a situation calls for quiet, Lanny will take notes on her thoughts so she can bring them up when the opportune moment presents itself. She chalks this up to a flighty nature.

Skills

  • Vogue - Strike a pose! Before the bomb, Lanny had a very promising career in modelling. While she's still as photogenic as ever, she's passed over for jobs more than she used to be. More than once she's been told that it's 'just as if the camera doesn't want to see her.' Still, she has poise and is very much in possession of the unique skill set of a professional model, which still lands her some work.
  • Sneaky - Without even trying, Lanny seems to have a natural ability to be stealthy. This backfires at social functions, where it seems that she's constantly hearing 'oh, I didn't see you there!' She's bumped into often in crowds, and sometimes a group of people in conversation won't notice her in their midst until she announces herself, or adds something to the discussion. This is somewhat odd when one considers that Lanny is over six feet tall in her shoes, and has a full head of red curls - characteristics that should make it harder to blend in.
  • Just Dance - While not nearly so good as Samara, Lanny studied ballet alongside her friend for many years. She still takes classes in the city, though more as a means of exercise and conditioning. She doesn't dance professionally, but definitely derives joy from it. It is a source of stress relief.
  • Slackademic - On paper, Lanny has good grades. In reality, most of her ability to ace tests comes from Samara feeding the answers to her. By no means unintelligent, Lanny simply lacks the memory Samara has. Where she has failings, Samara supplements.

Description

Soft ginger curls frame a pale, round, almost cherub-like face, dusted with freckles. Dimples show beneath prominent cheek bones when the young woman smiles, giving her an exceptionally cheery quality. Her blue eyes seem to sparkle, sometimes with mirth and other times with a startling intensity. Her arched brows are always perfectly manicured and the pale red is sometimes filled in by a brow pencil. Petal pink lips form almost a heart shape - albeit faintly lopsided. Her upper lip forms a near perfect Cupid's bow, and the lower an asymmetrical tear drop shape - the right side of her mouth a little fuller than her left.

The woman's frame is perfectly befitting a model. Flat-footed, she stands roughly an inch and a half short of six feet tall, her limbs long and lean with legs that seem to impossibly stretch on forever. Her shoulders are narrow, her curves are gentle, modest really. She lacks the hourglass silhouette most women desire, but she creates the illusion with flattering clothes, usually in bright colours.


Manhattan's Feedback Notes:

Submitted: 03:43 am, September 14, 2010
Reviewer: Manhattan
Status: CLOSED and DENIED (04:16 am, October 02, 2010)
Reason for
Denial: Some small revisions. YOU ARE ALMOST THERE.

Application for Lanny submitted for staff review.

— Notes —
1) Awright, TIME TO GET ON THIS PONY.

For the most part everything here looks pretty great. There's a couple of blips on the radar that need hammering out, then you'll be good. First is probably the more painful, "Sneaky" has to go, whole-cloth. The only after-effect that Rue is going to maintain from Samara's phasing of her is the ability to perceive her, and we've decided to leave that in the realm of "man, nobody knows how that happened" sort of how the Institute scratches their head about Darren's ability at times. It happened, but the circumstances for it are so impossible to recreate that scientists would be boggling over it for a long time to come, and it won't be happening again.

If Samara does get her corporeality back, it won't change the way Rue is. She's permanently a little tweaked. If anything else comes up form her tiny phased status, we'll throw out something to you to let you know, whether it's a plot hook of seeing something else or the like. But sneaky's gotta go the way of the dodo!

History and personality are cool, with a couple small exceptions:

1) There's a big time gap between being released from the mental hospital and the present day. Did she attend university? Does she have any other aspirations other than modeling? Some more meat there.

2) Registration is now officially mandatory for both Evolved and Non-Evolved. Lanny will have needed to have been tested, and her test would have come back negative. How would this affect her if she believes she can see dead people? Since her release from the hospital was before widely available Evolved testing, convincing the people in the hospital was one thing. But now she has to register, and the sad truth is going to come out.

THAT IS ALL. (Manhattan, Oct 02, 04:15 am)

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