Merry Go-Round

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Merry by the pond near her house.
Player: @DoctorVoid
Origin: Mutation
Archetype: Controller
Security Level: 29
Personal Data
Real Name: Merry Sakura O'Higgins
Known Aliases: Cub, Cubling (only by Mommy and Auntie Luna)
Species: Human/mutant/shapeshifter
Age: 12, physically. 4, chronologically. (Birthday: 10/23/06)
Height: 5 ft.
Weight: 100 lbs.
Eye Color: '
Hair Color: Reddish Brown
Biographical Data
Nationality: United States
Occupation: none
Place of Birth: Sharkhead Isle, Rogue Isles
Base of Operations: Salamanca
Marital Status: Single
Known Relatives: Sorsha O'Higgins (a.k.a. Rua Bas) (mother), father unknown
Known Powers
Pyrogenesis, pyrokinesis, weather manipulation, superspeed
Known Abilities
Able to shift from human to wolf and back, heightened senses, photographic memory.
No additional information available.

MerryGoRound came about as a result of some collaboration between @Rua Bas and myself. She is one of the characters I enjoy most, for her energy, care-free spirit, and...just everything about her, really. (Will add in her eye color as soon as I remember it.)



Merry is not currently affiliated with any supergroup. At one time, she was, but left to focus on schoolwork. She has since returned to semi-active hero work, and been seen at a number of events put on by The Cape. Her primary affiliations are with her "family": Rua Bas, her mother, a Hero of the City; Luna Si, her "Auntie" and one of her main teachers; and Tutti Fruitti, her other "Auntie" and frequent chaperone (though she usually keeps herself hidden). She has also been seen in the company of various heroes and villains at Cape shows, including Dragonberry, Tarosvan, Daira SilentStriker, Jimmy Martignetti, Blackstar Rising, and Roxy Acetylene. She has also recently done some work with members of the supergroup First Light.


Merry is a very, very energetic little girl. She idolizes her mother and aunties, and works very hard not to upset them. She seldom does things that would get her in trouble, and rarely if ever sneaks out; she hates making Mommy worry. She wears her heart on her sleeve, but is not quick to anger except in certain combat situations, especially if her friends and teammates are being hurt. She is exceptionally intelligent for a girl of her age, but also quite naive about some things, and has been the victim of (harmless) practical jokes by friends in the past. She is unafraid to speak her mind on virtually any matter (if she knows what's being talked about, or thinks she does), but also displays surprisingly good manners, going as far as to insist on calling people older than her (usually anyone over the age of 19)"Mr.", "Miss", or "Mrs.", even when they tell her she doesn't have to be so formal with them. As with any ten year old, though, she does have her moments of bad or rude behavior (such as watching a conversation at one of DJ Crypto's shows and eating popcorn while talking about it with Deebs).


Due to the dominance of her mother's genes in her development, Merry has inherited her mother's power over flame. She has also displayed two other powers that seem to have developed on their own; limited power over the weather, and superspeed.

Fire Control

Merry is capable of generating intense heat, as well as manipulating flames at will. While she does not possess the same degree of power as her mother, she is capable of a certain degree of fine control; she has produced effects ranging from a small-scale explosion to sap the oxygen from the air around her opponents, to generating rings of fire to cage enemies, to juggling tennis-ball-sized fireballs during a Cape broadcast. With time and training, it is likely that her power will continue to grow, and she will develop more and more potent techniques. Thanks to her fiery powers, Merry's body temperature remains comfortable even in frigid winter conditions.

Weather Manipulation

Merry is capable of manipulating weather on a small scale within her vicinity. She has displayed a fine enough control to rush oxygen into the lungs of a teammate, but most of her power lies in affecting a small area. She can produce a variety of effects, from a powerful gust of wind, putting some distance between herself and her (much larger) opponents, to a cloud of steamy mist to help conceal herself and her friends, to a small-scale snowstorm, slowing her opponents' movement with the chilly temperatures while simultaneously obscuring their vision with massive amounts of snow.


Another power that sets Merry apart from her mother is her speed. While Rua Bas is capable of flying at tremendous speed, MerryGoRound is capable of running at a speed that could put a race car driver to shame. With training, her speed will likely continue to increase. Merry loves running through the fields and woods of Croatoa, and playing "tag" with the sprites in the pond near her house at superhuman speed. She has also been known to "glomp" her friends while running at this speed, though she often slows down just before the actual leap. She has also proven, with practice, to be quite maneuverable while moving at superspeed. Recently Merry discovered that she could produce a whirlwind-like effect if she spun like a ballerina at superspeed. She often uses this trick to change into her costume faster than the eye can see. She also likes to race into a crowd of enemies while spinning; the resulting winds often send all but the most powerful opponents scattering.


Merry has several abilities that do not pertain to her mutation.

Shapeshifting (Wolf)

Merry is able to shift forms from human to wolf. She does not often use this natural ability, unless training with her Auntie Luna and her mother, as she's still very new at it. Some of her wolfish nature can be seen, however, if she grows angry; she's been known to growl at enemies in a very animalistic fashion, which sounds like a real wolf, and not a human. She receives training in her wolf nature and abilities, including heightened senses, everyday. Her senses, even in human form, are acute enough that she has been able to identify people by scent. However, she has not yet mastered her sense of smell to such a degree that she can easily pick out an individual from a crowd; it's very much like a single voice being lost in the noise of a party. This is not a mutation, as she is technically a separate species.

Photographic Memory

Another ability not possessed by her mother, Merry was born with a photographic memory. This has proven to be a double-edged sword. While she will never forget a face or an encounter, this ability, coupled with her high intelligence, allows her to learn things at a much faster rate than most children. Consequently, she has, in the past, been treated harshly by other children her own age.

Weaknesses and Limitations

Despite her many gifts, Merry does have one major drawback.


First and foremost among her weaknesses is her age. For all her power, enthusiasm, and skill, Merry O'Higgins is still just a ten-year-old child. She is faster than average, and perhaps a little tougher, but not so much so that she can fight a large group of enemies on her own. Another drawback of her age is her limited experience in the world; because of this she can be quite naive and easily tricked, sometimes. She can also be a bit impulsive, as one might expect, leaping into a situation before she's thought it all out. She's working on that.

Character History


Spoiler warning: Details about a player-created storyline, or information currently unrevealed about a character, follow.

Merry O'Higgins was not born like most children. In fact, there was no intimacy of any kind involved in her birth. She was born from a manipulation of words in an agreement between Dr. Wretched and her mother, Rua Bas (a.k.a. Sorsha O'Higgins). In exchange for the doctor's help in getting out of a very bad situation, Rua agreed to provide him with a blood sample. Her one condition to providing the sample was that he not clone her. Wretched, ever the crafty gentleman, agreed to her terms. However, as Rua had not specifically stated anything beyond "no cloning", he took advantage of a minor loophole in the contract; rather than cloning the heroine, he used her blood sample to produce a healthy embryo, which he proceeded to fertilize with a sample from an anonymous donor, and grew over the course of eight days into an 8-year-old daughter. Wretched subtly manipulated the egg's development, employing his advanced knowledge of genetics, to ensure that the egg would become a daughter, with her mother's genes dominant over her father's. Beyond that, he left the rest to nature (such as it was, growing inside a tank). While the little girl grew, Wretched subjected her mind to a highly advanced virtual reality program, developed by him, that allowed the little girl to experience the first eight years of her life in a high-speed simulation. He was quite pleased with how quickly her mind responded, absorbing the experience readily. As she grew, Wretched monitored her progress regularly. The doctor was a bit surprised at how readily she accepted the notion that her life at that time had been an artificial reality - very much like a lucid dream. He named her Merry, after Rua Bas's mother, recently killed in a car accident, along with Rua's adopted son. As she grew, Wretched also developed a set of DVD's detailing the first eight years of her life, recording the VR simulation, as well as a personal message to her mother. Finally, on October 30th, 2006, the tank drained of its special fluids, and Merry O'Higgins entered the world - though she recognizes the 23rd as her birthday, as that was the end of the first stage of her development. Wretched taught Merry a few more things. He also made her pinky-swear that she wouldn't reveal the truth about who her father was until he'd done it himself.

On November 6th, he escorted her covertly to the Pocket D, making arrangements so that she wouldn't be recognized as a "villain", and entrusted her with a note promising a rather large amount of money to be paid to a man called Rogue Combatant. She entered the D alone, and proceeded to find the mercenary in question, explaining to him that the Doctor had sent her to find him and offer him funds to be her chaperone; Wretched didn't want Merry to run around the D alone, as he'd said there were "too many weirdos". Once Merry revealed exactly who her mother was, Rogue was a bit more hesitant to go along, but ultimately agreed. Merry was extremely nervous about meeting her mother. Meanwhile, the doctor had sent a rather cryptic message to Rua Bas, hinting that she should come to the D for a "present". An associate of Rogue's arrived and kept watch over Merry while Rogue made contact with Rua. When Rogue returned, Rua kept a slight distance. When she learned the child's name, her hands ignited, her face a mask of fury, hearing her mother's name used by someone connected to Dr. Wretched, a man she reviled. Even after reining her power back in, the hero's anger was intense. She restrained herself enough to ask who had told the child that was her name. Merry couldn't quite stammer it out, so Rogue finished for her. Rua's expression softened, seeing how upset the little girl was, and she said that Wretched had lied, and that the little girl was not Merry, was not her mother. Merry said that she only knew that that was the name he'd given her, and that he had sent her to Rua Bas for a very specific reason: to give her something to care for, something to protect. She went on to say that Wretched had told her that he'd heard that Sorsha's mother was a wonderful person by all accounts, and that he'd wanted the child to have the name of someone special. Rua's eyes had begun to widen as she began to remember their agreement (her recent experience, which Wretched had promised never to speak of with anyone else, had left her mind somewhat clouded).

"He said...he wouldn't..." She fell to her knees, and continued whispering, "He said...he wouldn't." Merry realized what her mother was speaking of, and stepped forward, pointing out some faintly Asian facial features that clearly did not come from the hero. When she was finally asked what she was, tears finally streaming from her mother's eyes, Merry, also crying, explained: "Your...daughter..."

Rua Bas was unwilling to accept this at first, until Merry explained that she was, in fact, a sort of test tube baby. She assured her mother, weeping, barely containing her own emotions, that she hadn't done anything. She was startled then, when Sorsha pulled her into a hug. Mother and child cried openly then. Rogue, who Merry had given the DVD's to, turned them over to Rua Bas. Merry began to ask if she was okay, but Sorsha put a finger to her lips before she could utter the word, "Mommy". Her mother said that she needed to see the video first, that she wasn't ready yet to be called that. She explained that the doctor had always been nice to her, even telling her that he wanted to be happy. Sorsha remained skeptical of this.

Spoilers end here.

Becoming a Hero

Merry in costume near the pond by her house.
A few weeks passed, with Merry staying in the base of her mother's supergroup at the time. She made a few friends, and studied hard about things she wanted to know more about. November 24th came, and it was one of the happiest days of Merry's young life; Sorsha began encouraging her to call her Mom (or, as Merry does, Mommy), and took her to her home in the woods of Croatoa. There, she was brought to a very tastefully decorated room, with colors bright enough for a little girl to love, but muted enough for a growing girl to still love. In the room was a large bed, piled with stuffed animals...and a very large present. Merry was told the room was hers, and that she would be living here from now on, with her mother. She was coaxed to open the present while Sorsha changed. With shaking hands, the little girl began to peel the paper off the gift. Her eyes widened slowly as she opened it, turning to her returned mother, who was now dressed in a brand new costume. In the package was a brand new costume, unlike the one the doctor had given her, but perfectly complementing the one that Rua Bas now wore. Merry squealed in delight, and immediately put the costume on. Shortly thereafter, she, her mother, and their friend Miles went out on Merry's first day as a hero, beginning her training in the use of her powers. Merry had never had the opportunity to really develop her powers in the simulated reality, and was thrilled at the chance. After a few hours of practical training (thrashing Skulls), Merry returned to her new home happily, falling asleep in her brand-new bed with her most cherished possession, her costume, tucked safely under her pillow. All of Merry's earliest dreams were finally becoming reality. Thus ended the best day of Merry's life.

2006-Present: Daily Life and Changes

The year went by quickly, and Merry became more proficient with her powers. The supergroup went through some restructuring, and she happily stayed by her mother, the faithful sidekick, also helping other members of the group when asked. She entered school, enjoying it very much. She tried not to stand out too much, but had some difficulties due to her enthusiasm and intelligence. She managed to show excellent self-control with her powers, as well. Despite all of this, or perhaps because of it, Merry didn't make many friends her own age. Nevertheless, she was very happy spending time with her comrades. As time went on, the group went through more changes, and ultimately her mother retired from active hero work to concentrate on a foundation she had started for their people. Merry went with her, also dropping from active hero work for a time to concentrate on schoolwork.

Merry also received special training at home from her mother and Auntie Luna. Auntie Luna was a very important person in their pack, a shaman, and quite wise. She taught Merry things that the doctor's simulation never could, things about being a wolf. She helped to train Merry in the use of her wolf abilities, and continues to do so to this day. She also teaches Merry yoga on a regular basis, both as a fitness exercise and as a method of developing focus. She and Sorsha taught Merry about the effect of the full moon on their kind, how it caused an increase in aggression, and have worked to teach the girl self control so that she doesn't lose to her fighting instinct on the day of the full moon or the two days after it. They also train her in exercises disguised as games of hide-and-seek and such, having her use her senses to track them in the forest. She also spends a great deal of time with her Auntie Tutti (who had also been aged rapidly, though through completely different circumstances), playing games.

As time went on, Merry began having difficulties at school. She still had not made many friends, and some of the kids were quite mean to her. She also became bored with classes; it was not that the teachers were doing a poor job, it was simply the fact that she was stuck in classes that were below her learning ability. On her own time, Merry had begun to read books that were far advanced for her age, as high as 8th or 9th grade level. Ultimately, in 2008, her mother made the decision to pull Merry out of school and have her home-schooled. She is quite happy with this, as she gets to spend even more time with her mother and aunts. At one point, her mom even considered packing up the entire family and moving; Merry was very happy when she changed her mind.

As 2008 progressed, Merry slowly began to return to hero work, and spending more time in Paragon, making several new friends, such as the equally-energetic Dragonberry and the elegant Aria Notturna, as well as reuniting with older ones, such as the humble Sir Parzifal and quick-witted Trey Mercer. Another important event in her young life came on February 1st; having finally attained her level 20 security clearance, Merry earned the right to wear a cape.
The best blanket ever.
She and her mother traveled around Paragon, and Merry learned some important lessons about Hero 1, lessons that showed her just how important her training with her Auntie Luna was. Side-by-side with her mother, she entered the base containing Omega Team's time capsule and fought off the Lost who had come to ruin it. She asked her mother about Omega Team, and if she thought they would ever make it back; Sorsha, as a Hero of the City, knew the answer, but couldn't bring herself to share the truth, instead telling her daughter that she believed his legend would be enough for now, and that they (the current heroes) would take care of it in their stead. Merry proudly agreed.

After returning to the city representative, Merry and Sorsha headed straight for Icon in Steel Canyon. Merry had already handled Serge's Tsoo problem with help from a friend, so he was only too happy to get her cape. Her mother picked out the pattern; a short white cape with a gold Celtic knotwork pattern, a half mantle, and two pretty gold buttons to hold it in place. Merry had not been so excited since she had received her costume a little more than two years before. She was so excited, she forgot to mention that she wanted the short cape at first, but quickly remedied the situation when her mother pointed it out. She tested it out with a quick lap of the store, making sure she wouldn't trip. She had to take it back one more time to have the pattern changed; initially, she'd asked for the knotwork on both sides of the cape. Her mother reminded her that she had yoga in the morning, and that Luna would probably not like a sleepy Merry at class; Merry agreed, and said she'd try and go home to get some sleep. Sorsha, to her credit, let Merry in on a little secret: she advised her daughter that capes make wonderful blankets. Merry could not have been happier, and hugged her as tight as she could, declaring that she was the best Mommy ever. She returned home, washed up, and went to bed, happily nodding off curled up with her cape. Thus ended the second-best day of Merry's young life.

Merry and her Mom, on the day she got her cape.

Since then, life has continued in much the same vein, and Merry continues to learn and grow, enjoying life as a hero and a little girl. Her room has been redecorated to be very much like a castle from a storybook. She has made a few new acquaintances in the supergroup First Light, as well. Some might worry that the life of a hero would be too hard on a child her age, but if they ever asked Merry, she couldn't be happier.


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