||It felt weird to tell my fourteen year old daughter to break a man’s arm, once upon a time. We adapt.
Carol Dallon, known publicly as Brandish, is the wife of Mark Dallon and the mother of Victoria Dallon. She is also the adoptive mother of Amy Dallon, and a member of New Wave.
Carol was a skilled lawyer. She worked for the same firm as Alan Barnes, and the two were friends. She promised herself that she would strike a balance between her two careers when she joined New Wave. She tended to cope with stress by focusing on the business side of her life.
She was sometimes afraid of the dark as a result of her trauma,sleeping with the lights on in her room, and generally keeping the lights on around the house.
She disliked using abbreviations such as "lol".
Carol had severe trust issues, stemming from her Trigger Event - she had grown to trust one of her kidnappers to an extent, and felt betrayed when he tried to execute her. Something about Marquis reminded her of him, perhaps the fact that she liked him on a level. He didn't fit with her view of the world - criminal, yet with a code.
Carol felt she was only able to trust her daughter, Victoria, because she was hers - a part of her from the very beginning. She was willing to believe Glory Girl's excuses about having difficulty holding back with her power.
Amy Dallon, her adoptive daughter, felt - correctly - that Carol never really wanted her. After her husband received a head injury, she blamed her for not healing him. Carol was constantly wary of Amy.
Carol and Mark were married for around two decades. They still have strong feelings for each other, however their relationship is uneasy, they tend to grow distant from time to time, even split up for a while, only to reconnect again later.
Carol and Neil had an affair early in their relationship, both of them were with their future spouses at the time. Carol pleads to Victoria, that she is not his daughter, however Carol struggles to remember completely.
As Brandish, Carol wears a white costume with orange trim and a crossed-blade symbol. She keeps her hair short.
Abilities and Powers
Carol Dallon has the ability to create various simple weapons and martial shields out of burning 'hard' light, or light augmented by concussive or kinetic force. Further she can condense herself into a bouncing sphere of hard light, effectively invincible and untouchable at the cost of all mobility.
She described her ball form as "condensed into a point, surrounded by a layered, spherical force field". It could fly away whenever it was hit, or she could exercise some control over the direction. She could choose what posture she was in when transitioning between forms, allowing her to more easily recover from falls. It was orange-yellow in color. While in her ball form, Brandish is in a kind of 'stasis'. This allows her to do a combination attack with Flashbang, in which she takes some of his timed grenades into her ball form and unleashes them when she comes out. While in her Breaker form, Brandish cannot see or hear anything, only able to track the world around her with another kind of awareness. This essentially meant she was trapped in the dark whenever she used this form, which just so happens to be her exact phobia.
Brandish is martial combatant capable of delivering explosively powerful strikes or letting her weapons shear through flesh and bone without resistance, burning and cauterizing any wound. They could slash through Marquis' bone plates and could even shear through steel. The weapons "looked as though they were made from lightning." They could be a sword, a pair of swords, a crude bludgeon, or a pair of axes, among other things.. Brandish can control how damaging the specific instance of weapon is.
She has some resistance to blinding lights, likely so she isn't blinded by the light of her own creations.
Carol triggered while kidnapped, about to be executed by her captors, feeling betrayed that the captor who had fed them, whom she had liked, tried to kill her. She killed him with her power. Either she or Lady Photon (who triggered first) had a connection with a shard, which then budded to the other.
She joined the Brockton Bay Brigade during a period when there were few heroes in Brockton Bay, without the Unwritten Rules. There she met her husband, Mark Dallon. They joined New Wave when it was founded.
She had Victoria at 18, she stopped attending therapy around the same time.
She tried for a normal life and began a career as a criminal lawyer.
She was persuaded to adopt Panacea when they found her in Marquis' lair, out of worries that another group might seek to use her for whatever powers she developed. She accepted in the end because she had a job, while her sister already had two children.
Halfheartedly tried to return runaway girl into the fold. Barely evaded obliteration.
With the change over from the Brigade to New Wave and subsequent tragedies, Carol was effectively forced to act as manager for the team; handling legal affairs, public relations, and media contacts.
When the E88's identities were revealed Brandish and Flashbang confronted Krieg and his subordinates with New Wave.
Carol fought Leviathan alongside the rest of New Wave.
Following the deaths of much of New Wave and her husband's head injury, Carol considered disbanding New Wave. She received a letter from Dragon warning her that Marquis believed his daughter was in danger.
Was working late when her colleague Alan got back to her over a trifling matter.
Using a tip from Tattletale she was able to find her daughters only to discover that she had lost them; Amy had mutilated Victoria with her power, and was subsequently imprisoned in the birdcage.
Carol briefly reunited with both of her daughters; she saw them for only a short time before the fighting began in earnest.
Carol was set up in a house in the suburbs of the city. She tried to get her daughters into the same house, in the hopes of forcing a reconciliation; this backfired and estranged her from Victoria.
She acted as a lawyer for the Wardens.
Carol continued lawyering for the remains of the Wardens under Dragon's leadership, but returned to cape activities as part of a minor team.
Brandish joined her daughter's team on a revenge mission to Earth N. In the final fight of it she got accidentally mauled by The Wretch, severely damaging her head and spine. She had to be brought to Amy on Earth Shin.
When Breakthrough visited Shin, Carol expressed concern for Amy.
Once Shin Diplomatic Crisis was resolved Carol returned to The City alongside Victoria.
Carol moved in with Crystal for a time, they prepared to evacuate from the city together.
She had a talk with her daughter about Victoria's father.
Carol reunited with her sister.
She was invited into the Wardens' situation room during the second Shin crisis. Carol helped Vista to deal with Narwhal, and participated in negotiations with The Red Queen.
Carol appeared in the Wardens headquarters after the ice broke.
She met Breakthrough, when they were returning from The Firmament, and led Victoria to Amy.
Carol and Mark offered Victoria's plague to Amy.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 “Carol, if I remember right, was made to attend therapy for a time but abandoned it once she was eighteen.” [...] She abandoned it because she had a Victoria” - Excerpt from Interlude 16.y II
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Edit by Wildbow
- ↑ Striker 5, Shifter 1 (Wildbow note: should be Breaker 1 (Brute). If you had to put a number to the Brute, it would be 1. Classifications get murky out of context, though.) - Wildbow on Brandish
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Interlude 2
- ↑ Extermination 8.6
- ↑ 6.00 6.01 6.02 6.03 6.04 6.05 6.06 6.07 6.08 6.09 6.10 Interlude 15.x
- ↑ “When I agreed to join New Wave, Sarah and I both agreed that I’d keep my job, and I’d strike a balance between work and life in costume.” - Excerpt from Interlude 15.x
- ↑ - Excerpt from Daybreak 1.6
- ↑ She was glad for the sunlight that streamed in through the window, the glare of the florescent bulbs overhead. Recent events had stirred her old fears of the dark. - Interlude 15.x
- ↑ “I know it was hard, honey. I get it, I really do. But you can’t dwell in the past. It’s not good for you. You can’t carry that.”
“You say that, when you still sleep with the lights on,” I said. - Excerpt from Daybreak 1.7
- ↑ Sveta flicked the switch, looking up as the lights took their time coming on. It made me think of my mom. Turning on the lights, even when not strictly necessary. I could remember visiting friend’s houses and feeling like something was odd when other parents didn’t do it. - Excerpt from Shade 4.6
- ↑ Daybreak 1.1
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 13.5 13.6 13.7 13.8 Interlude 11h
- ↑ Interlude 3
- ↑ Treating like a monster might be a little overboard, but they're accurate in reading scenes where Amy was neglected.
Carol's word choice is one hint here - you can read the interlude that was just covered and note how Carol refers to Amy vs. how she refers to Victoria. The words aren't hateful, but Amy is 'amy' and Victoria is 'my daughter'. She says, outright, "I don't want her" while the child is in earshot, and then when Lady Photon says "You could grow to love and trust that little girl, too.” Carol's (later, connecting) thought is "Liar".
Look at Amy's conversation with Gallant... "Carol never really wanted me. Mark is clinically depressed, so as nice as he is, he’s too focused on himself to really be a dad."
Interlude 11.h, It had always been Victoria, only Victoria, who made her feel like she had a family here.
Then later, same interlude, What Amy felt from her ‘mother’ was a chill. She knew that she was only justifying the darker suspicions Carol had harbored towards her since she was first brought into the family. It was doubly crushing now, because Amy knew about Marquis. Amy knew that Carol was thinking the same thing she was.
Carol didn't reach out, she wasn't warm, she wasn't a mother. At best, Amy was a person living in their house. At worst, Amy was someone suspicious, Marquis' daughter. So Amy never really had a 'home', a safe haven to retreat to. If you want to read between the lines, the fact that she'd go out at night to visit the hospital (and that nobody was stopping her) might indicate more about her feelings at home. She wasn't mistreated. She got fed, she got clothes. Mark (Flashbang) even tried to be a warmer dad when he was up to it, but that's something as rare as the sun coming out in the UK - brief and unpredictable bouts of good in the midst of a perpetually overcast setting. In the end, all she really had was Victoria. - Comment of RPR.net by Wildbow
- ↑ "holy hell, Victoria. I love her. She brings out the best in me, and I think my being close to her helps her good side shine. When I’m not with her I don’t feel like a whole person. So I tell myself that this time, I’ll push her harder, draw a firmer line, call her out. But it takes resources I don’t always have.”- Excerpt from Sundown 17.9
- ↑ From Within 16.12
- ↑ 18.0 18.1 “Not your father,” Carol said. “But I thought once that he might be.”
“He might be,” I echoed her.
“You had so much of him in you, and your power… for pretty much the entire year before your sister triggered, I was in dread. Neil was too. You-” she looked at Crystal, “-Understand, please, it was that I spent so long unable to trust anyone. It took me years to warm up to anyone. Years to get close to Mark. But we had our rough patches, and then there was Neil, and I could trust him more easily because Sarah trusted him-”
“You can’t give me the one answer?” I pressed her. “The important one?”
“I can’t,” she said, tensing up. “I can’t.”
“The head injury,” Crystal said. “She really might not be able to.”
“Mark’s your father,” my mother said, to my back. - Excerpt from Sundown 17.1
- ↑ Brandish – Member of New Wave, mother of two. Wears a white costume with orange symbols. Can fashion weapons out of energy and transform herself into a nigh-invulnerable, sphere, but can’t move of her own volition while transformed. - Cast (spoiler free)
- ↑ Brandish, Carol Dallon – Flashbang’s wife. Civilian identity is that of a high profile lawyer. Has the ability to create weapons and martial shields out of hard light, and can condense herself into a bouncing sphere of hard light, being effectively invincible and untouchable at the cost of all mobility. Wears a costume of white and orange with a crossed-blade symbol. - Cast (in depth)
- ↑ Carol was still working on her hair, which she had been doing before I started my fifteen minute shower, finished post-shower ministrations, dressed, and stepped out. Golden hair parted, slicked close to the head at one side below the part, a roller removed from the hair at the brow, where it gave her hair some wave as it swept over one corner of her forehead. Every strand with a place, but the short hairstyle wasn’t the sort of thing that required fifteen minutes. - Excerpt from Sundown 17.2
- ↑ She charged forward, manifesting energy in the shape of a lance, driving it toward Marquis.
He cast a glance her way and stuck one foot out in her direction. His toes mutated into a jagged, uneven ripple of bone that stretched out beneath her. Unable to maintain her footing, she had to cancel out the lance, using her hands to brace her fall.
Spikes of bone poked out of the ground in a circle around her, rising to form a cage.
She created twin knives out of energy, slashing out to cut through the bars.
She looked down. She’d unconsciously pressed the blade closer. When she lifted it, she could see the burn at the base of his throat. - Interlude 15.x
- ↑ 23.0 23.1 Ranked 1 powers mentioned thus far include Shadow Stalker and Brandish (Mover 1 and Shifter 1, respectively).
For Shadow Stalker, that’s the ability to float or jump a good distance (12-15 feet from a standing position). Somewhat more versatile than an olympic athlete might be able to maintain.
For Brandish, it’s the ability to become an immobile, nigh-invulnerable sphere. - Comment by Wildbow
- ↑ Manpower and Brandish charged. They didn’t get two steps before Marquis turned himself into a sea urchin, bone spears no thicker than a needle extending out of every pore, some extending twelve or fifteen feet.
Brandish planted her heel on the ground to arrest her forward movement and activated her power. In an instant, her body was condensed into a point, surrounded by a layered, spherical force field. It meant she didn’t fall on her rear end, and she could pick a more appropriate posture as she snapped back into her human shape. - Excerpt from Interlude 15.x
- ↑ Brandish flicked her hands out, and beams of light drew into vague sword shapes. As the dogs stampeded towards her she flicked them out to double the length. They drew closer, almost reaching her, and she reconsidered, banishing the weapons to condense herself into a beachball-sized ball of orange-yellow light. The dogs hit her, there was a spray of sparks, and the ball was sent careening down the street and through the wall of a building. - Excerpt from Interlude 11a
- ↑ The ball ricocheted off the ground, hit the ceiling, then, in the center of the room, expanded into Brandish, who was loaded with pre-prepared Flashbang grenades. While she was in her ball-state, she was in total stasis. The grenades had a timer, but the timer didn’t count down while she was frozen and not of this world. She scattered them, throwing them wide. Heavens 12.1
- ↑ My dad didn’t answer. I knew. Even after all this time, Brandish hated being in the form. It left her blind and deaf, sensing and tracking the world around her with another kind of awareness. In the ball, she was confined in the dark. And she hated the dark.- Heavens 12.9
- ↑ A weapon appeared in her hands, forged of light and energy and electricity. Crude, unrefined, it amounted to little more than a baseball bat.
When she struck him in the leg, the weapon sheared through without resistance. That’s good, her thoughts were strangely disconnected from everything else, because I can’t hit very hard right now.
He screamed as he fell to the ground, his leg severed.
She hit him again, then again, much like Sarah had with the other man. Except this wasn’t simply beating him to a pulp. It was more final than that.
When she was done, the weapon disappeared. Sarah hugged her, and she hugged her sister back.
When she cried, it wasn’t the crying of a thirteen year old girl. It was more basic, more raw: the uncontrolled, unrestrained wail one might expect of a baby. - Excerpt from Interlude 15.x
- ↑ 29.0 29.1 Extermination 8.5
- ↑ My mother produced a coruscating spike in her hand. I knew the energy she made could be diffused or left ‘sharp’, and I imagined she’d picked something that would burn at worst, if someone were to walk fast enough into it. - Excerpt from Breaking 14.7
Not a flashbang, but a flash. The light was blinding.
But in the midst of the light, a shadow loomed. Brandish hurried her way, weapon held high.
To an extent, it made sense. A person who manipulated fire often had protections from fire. This woman created weapons out of light- and she’d bounced back faster than some. - Excerpt from Eclipse x.5
- ↑ He’d tried to attack them? Carol couldn’t understand it. He was the one who’d taken care of them. When he’d appeared, she’d been happy. And now it felt like that had been ruined, spoiled.
She felt betrayed and she couldn’t understand why.
Again, the gun fired. She flinched, and not because of the noise. It was like she’d been slapped.
Silence, no hunger, no pain, no sense of betrayal. Even Sarah and the wall of light she’d put together were gone.
A flat plain stretched out around her, but she had no body. She could see in every direction.
A crack split the ground. Once the dust had settled, nothing happened for a long time.
It’s an egg, she realized, just in time to see it hatch.
The egg’s occupant tore free from the crack, unfolding from a condensed point to grow larger with every moment and movement.
Others were hatching from the same egg, spreading out like sparks from the shell of a firework. Each unfolding into something vast and incomprehensible within seconds of its birth.
But her attention was on the first. She felt it reach out and connect with another that shared a similar trajectory. Still more were doing the same, pairing off. Forming into trios, in some cases, but most chose to form pairs.
A mate? A partner?
Each settled into a position around the ruined egg, embracing their chosen companions, rubbing against, into and through one another as they continued to grow.
The egg vibrated. Or did it? No, it was an illusion. There were multiple copies of the egg, multiple versions, and they each stirred, deviating from one another until subtle double images appeared.
Then, one by one, they crumpled into a single point. The egg at the center of the formation of these creatures was the last, and for the briefest of moments, it roiled with the pressure and energy of all of the others.
Then it detonated, and the creatures came alive, soaring out into the vastness of the void, trails of dust following in their wake, each with a partner, a companion, traveling in a different direction.
And she was back in the dark room, staring at the man. - Excerpt from Interlude 15.x
- ↑ WyldCard4: Do Brandish and Lady Photon have closely related or bud shards?
Wildbow: Yes. Bud shards. One had it, then the stress they were under prompted it to bud, it found the nearby host who met the prerequisites. - Comment by Wildbow on Spacebattles
- ↑ Agitation 3.12
- ↑ Eclipse x.5
- ↑ Daybreak 1.7
- ↑ Glare 3.6
- ↑ Beacon 8.1
- ↑ From Within 16.12
- ↑ Sundown 17.2
- ↑ Sundown 17.4
- ↑ Sundown 17.5
- ↑ Radiation 18.1
- ↑ Infrared 19.10
- ↑ Last 20.10