Prior to triggering, she led a relatively normal life. Without Coil's interference, she might have just stopped trying to use her power.
Her personality was obscured by her forced drugging and was instead obsessed with her 'candy', her understanding of her addiction. Her relative complacency during the event could have been affected by the fact she knew she might get to come home someday.
After her release, she became focused on humanity's survival in preparation for the End of the World, and was willing to do morally questionable things to increase the number of lives saved.
Presumably healthy and was willing to return to them.
She met her a few times but had only two possibly three conversations of note with her.
She was protective towards her, both for being grateful for Taylor's assistance and her role in saving the world.
Dinah is described as a pre-adolescent girl with straight, dark-brown hair. While in Coil's custody she was heavily drugged, and visibly malnourished.
After being freed from Coil, she cut her hair short.
During her meeting with the Wardens after the Attack on Teacher, Dinah wore a blindfold and a nice-suit dress, both with a wild pattern to it.
Abilities and Powers
Dinah has the ability to see the likelihood of something occurring in the future, which her power resolves into a percentage chance. She does this by perceiving trillions of possible universes and sorting them into groups based on a single event.
At Coil's insistence, Dinah also demonstrated the ability to pick out a single timeline and interpret it, which was used to see a future where Crawler did not kill her, Coil, and the Travelers. It allowed them to find a situation where they could escape and then employ it.
If someone asks Dinah a question, she does not have to answer that question. However, she could instinctively look at assorted futures in response to a question. For this reason, she appreciates it if other people can avoid phrasing things as questions. If Dinah lies about an answer provided by her power, it messes up her power for a while after, likely because actions relating to this answer affect the results.
Her power was not absolute, it could be affected by "stoppers" likely Thinkers who have powers that can cause the actions of others to change.
Following the Teacher's defeat by The Wardens, terror-attack on mayor Wynn and call to evacuate The City, Nieves brought Dinah to Wardens. Dinah argued that Contessa is untrustworthy. She reported her previous manipulations to The Wardens, but denied examinations by Thinkers and threatened with Palanquin involvement if she was detained. She prophesied several almost imminent catastrophes with mass civilian casualties, all with Contessa overseeing them.
The thinker group she was part of was targeted by The Simurgh during her assault on Wardens Complex, and suffered continuous attacks from compromised individuals. Eventually, some of the thinkers succumbed to Simurgh's song and took Dinah hostage. She was freed by Victoria Dallon and helped her to disable The Mathers Giant.
Identified by the author as the third most powerful precognitive in the Worm setting. The first two are likely Contessa and The Simurgh, although it is unclear which of the two is the most powerful.
Her verbose and formal word choice when addressing others, along with her mature behavior for her age, has led to speculation that Dinah may have some form of High Functioning Autism.syndrome.
It was actually Imp who came up with the name "kid Cassandra", though Tattletale probably deserves credit for popularizing it.
↑ 1.01.11.2“He’s here,” Kenzie piped up, in a little announcement that made Bullet Time give her a curious look. “He brought, uh, what’s her name? She went by Kid Cassandra while doing contract work, the Heartbroken said Tattletale coined the name to annoy her. Then she wanted to change it because she’s barely a kid anymore.” [...] Giving us a quizzical look, Golem led us down the hall. We passed a meeting room with the blinds partially closed, and I could see the silhouettes of Dinah Alcott, AKA: Kid Cassandra, and of Gary Nieves, sitting across from Miss Militia. - Excerpt from From Within 16.2
↑Dinah Alcott – A powerful clairvoyant, twelve years old, has straight brown hair. - Cast Page
↑“Not a wise business decision for a rogue starting out,” Tagg said, without rising from his chair. “Offending an organization like the PRT, a young lady like you mouthing off. We could cooperate, instead.” - Excerpt from Cell 22.1
↑She put her hand in mine, and I could feel it shaking in the half second before I got a firm grip. I supported her as she got out of the car, then walked her back toward the house.
Mrs. Alcott made a noise somewhere between a moan and a cry as we approached the front door. I moved my bugs out of the way and let go of Dinah the second her mother embraced her, right in the middle of the front lawn. The father was only a step behind, dropping to his knees to wrap his arms around them. A family reunited.
It was a rare thing, I was finding, that a family was both intact and functioning. Too many of the people I’d interacted with so far were separated from the families they should have by death, by pain, misunderstandings or abuse. - Queen 18.2
↑Let me introduce your candidates, starting with Mr. Roy Christner, our mayor incumbent. [...] “You bastard,” the Mayor growled. “First my niece, now this?”
Of course. I’d heard Dinah was niece to one of the mayoral candidates. I hadn’t realized she was the niece to the mayor. - Monarch 16.8
↑The woman next to him would be his wife. She had the look of someone who had purchased their good looks, with stylish clothes, an expensive haircut and top-notch makeup and skin care. - Colony 15.8
↑Tagg met them at the end of the lobby, then ushered them upstairs to the conference room. They were joined by Mrs. Yamada, her cousin Triumph, and Miss Militia.
Tagg waited until everyone else was seated before sitting at the head of the table. - Excerpt from Cell 22.1
↑He whipped his head around and stared at Trickster. Before the teleporter could pull the trigger or do anything else, Triumph shouted. His sister was untouched, but Trickster was sent flying into the wall hard enough that he was half-buried in the drywall.
The little girl threw herself to the ground as Triumph lunged forward, kicking the dining room table. It slid halfway across the room, over ‘Kyla’ and into the wall. The side slammed into Trickster’s midsection, and the table’s contents flew into the villain and the wall around him. Trickster went limp, his upper body flopping over the table. - Colony 15.8
↑Two younger girls. Going by their size, I’d guess between eight and twelve.” [...] She was clutching her husband, who was holding his two twin daughters. - Colony 15.8
↑ 10.010.110.2“Dinah Alcott,” Weld spoke. All eyes turned to the metal-skinned boy.
“Beg pardon?” Coil asked.
“Thursday, April fourteenth of this year, Dinah Alcott was kidnapped from her home and has not been seen since. Dinah had missed several weeks of classes with crippling headaches in the months before her disappearance. Investigation found no clear medical causes. Police interviewed her friends. She had confided to them that she thought she could see the future, but doing so hurt her.” - Excerpt from Plague 12.2
↑ 11.011.1Not so much that precogs are rare, but that they’re limited. The future is awfully big.
Look at Dinah – her ability crippled her early on, and if Coil hadn’t kidnapped her, she might have abandoned it, avoided using it, because it was that hard. As it stands, she has to search the myriad futures to prune away realities until she finds the answers to very specific questions. AND she’s the third most powerful precog in the setting.
As Coil notes in his interlude (Interlude 8), there’s two major classifications of serial murderer. The controlled one that sticks to rituals and routines, and the unpredictable ones that are hard to catch because you don’t know where they’re going to strike next. The Nine are the latter.
Add the fact that you can’t exactly stick a police tail on them, and any attempt to get in their way is liable to end up badly, and it can be hard to keep track of them. Figure they’ll retire for weeks at a time (see Aisha’s interlude where they’re kicking back in the apartment) and only really cut loose in areas where there’s chaos, and visibility might be low as well. - Comment by Wildbow on Prey 14.1
“Golem, we didn’t get a chance to go over this earlier, but you need to know… I can’t ask that many questions. I’ve been saving my power for the last big confrontation. Tattletale said this is the time to act. I used my power twice to answer big questions earlier today. Another three to figure out who I needed to talk to, and that told me-“
“I’m the best partner for you?”
“Right now, yes. Listen. Twenty-six questions left. We haven’t even found Jack. I can’t figure it out.“ - Interlude 26a
↑Break it down. Attack, left for blue. Group, forward for red. “Again.”
↑“Yes,” Dinah said, but from the reactions, she spoke only to Golem. “Seven questions, Theo.”
Seven questions. Seven chances to make this count.
Red or blue wouldn’t cut it.
“We called for reinforcements. Chance of assistance from outside?” he asked.
“I can answer that for you,” Tattletale said. “You’ve got capes converging on your location.”
“I’m not asking,” Dinah said, “You’ve still got seven questions. But the more time that passes, the worse chances are getting. I can see a lot of dead ends coming up. You need to act.” - Interlude 26b
↑Tagg was rubbing his temples. “Fine. Now, when you said that the outcome of this improves the numbers, I understand that includes sending her to the Birdcage?”
“When I said I was done, I meant it,” Dinah said. She pushed her chair back. Her parents joined her, standing. “You want more answers, get in contact with my dad, he’ll let you know my rates. They change every day.” - Excerpt from Cell 22.1
↑“You’ll charge us for a number you won’t provide?” Tagg asked.
“Yes. Because I charge you for asking. I can’t help but look for the numbers, so I have to look. And that makes my head hurt if I do it too much.” - Excerpt from Cell 22.1
“Laws, consequences. The goal was to have all violent retaliation fail, to put Gary Nieves at the head of an outraged and energized majority of the population, letting him choose a course of action. Gary?”
“You’re asking what I’d do?”
On the screen, Dinah could be seen wincing. “No questions, please. And yes. Your actions, assuming you were in charge.” - From Within 16.3
↑“Sure. If you could avoid phrasing things as questions, I’d appreciate it.” - From Within 16.3
↑“Headaches,” Dinah answered, pressing her hands to her head, “It breaks my power. It takes days, sometimes weeks before everything is sorted out and working again. Headaches the entire time, until everything is sorted out, worse headaches if I try to get numbers in the meantime. Have to be careful, can’t muddle things up. Can’t lie about the numbers, can’t look at what happens, or it just becomes chaos. Safer to keep a distance, to make and follow rules. Safer to just ask the questions and let things fall into place.” - Excerpt from Interlude 11f
↑ don’t know. There’s too many capes and too many capes with powers that make it fuzzy, because some powers make it harder and a bunch of those powers together make it impossible. I don’t know what happens to start all of it and I don’t know much of what happens during, but billions are dead afterward.” - Queen 18.1
↑The other three-quarters of that board were almost entirely clear, but for one index card in the upper-right:
limits to Dinah ability: can’t see accurately points of interaction with power immune capes, precogs, situ change Thinkers. Limited sight past points of interaction. these are ‘stoppers’
Hartford: No known stoppers in area. Enfield: No known stoppers in area. Chicopee: No known stoppers in area. Southbridge: No known stoppers in area. Boston, Charlestown Area: Yes stoppers, no direct interaction b/w any stoppers and Nine. call to dble check with Still. no interaction Toybox: No known stoppers.
It made a lot of sense. Tracking Jack’s trail of destruction from the point he’d left the city, finding the point where Dinah couldn’t or shouldn’t be able to see, using them to narrow down possibilities. - Excerpt from Imago 21.7
↑Coil bent down and pushed the hair away from the girl’s face. She looked at him, then looked away.
↑We hadn’t made the front page for any of the major papers, the first bit of good news. We made page three of the Bulletin, coming behind a one and a half page story on an Amber Alert and a General Motors advertisement. Part of the reason we hadn’t attracted all that much attention was probably because the bank was hedging about the amount taken. While we had escaped with more than forty thousand dollars, the paper was reporting losses of only twelve. All in all, the story had been more focused on the property damage, most of which was caused by Glory Girl and the Wards, and the fact that the darkness we’d used to cover our escape had stopped all traffic downtown for an hour. I’d been quietly elated by all of that. Anything that downplayed the magnitude of the crime I’d helped commit was a good point in my book. - Excerpt from Shell 4.1
↑“You’d know if you watched the news,” I told Regent, “If you read the paper. I hate that I have to explain this, when I don’t even want to think about it. She’s the missing kid. Remember our bank robbery? How we were weren’t even front page news because an amber alert took priority? That was her. Dinah Alcott.” - Excerpt from Buzz 7.11
↑The humans who have come through the end of the world with hate in their hearts are taking marching orders from the same young precognitive who predicted the end of the world two years in advance. Well, one order with some advice. We don’t know her aim yet, but she’ll be high up on our list. I want a Contessa of my own. - Excerpt from Interlude 8.y II
↑“Alcott? She’s been in the anti-parahuman orbit.”