|“||You're fucking a skeleton every night. There's no future in it for either of us.||”|
|— Brona to Ethan[src]|
Brona Croft is an Irish immigrant who was in London doing sex work. Brona met Ethan Chandler at The Mariner's Inn and they fell in love. Brona's illness (tuberculosis) led Chandler to seek the help of Victor Frankenstein who sped her death in hope to reanimate her to be the bride of the Creature. Brona was revived in the persona of Lily Frankenstein with seemingly no memory of her former self. She later revealed she had retained her memory and left Frankenstein for Dorian Gray.
Appearance and Personality
Brona is a poor Irish immigrant in Victorian London, trying to escape a dark and sordid past. The Gaelic meaning of her name is "sadness", yet she remains lovely, spirited, and erotically alive. She forms a bond with Ethan Chandler, who will do anything for her. Her beautiful appearance is stained by the marks of tuberculosis, an illness (known at the time as consumption) which is untreatable for the poor.
Since Brona's "rebirth" as Lily at the hands of Victor Frankenstein, her personality has undergone a drastic change. As Lily Frankenstein, she has been polite and courteous initially, and then a darker, more violent character began to surface. Brona quickly deduced the circumstances of her resurrection, with Victor as her creator, yet kept that knowledge to herself.
Observing how society and its men mistreat and disregard women, her rage festered. Embracing her power as an immortal and her position as a woman, she channeled her rage by overpowering and killing men she lured. She pledged to kneel to no man ever again, but they to her. Now enlightened, she seeks to bring in a new age led by immortals.
Brona is known to have lived in Belfast. She was engaged to a brutal shipyard laborer who abused her. After a bad beating, she ran to her mother for support, but instead she was told to go back and get married to the brute. Instead, she fled and exploited herself for the first time.
After having taken up residence in London, Brona gave birth to a baby girl. She did what she could to support herself and her baby, but times were hard and selling her body on the streets meant lengthy absences from her child. On a particularly cold night, she was savagely beaten by a client and left for dead. Upon regaining consciousness later that night, she rushed home, only to find that her baby had been left too long and had died of the cold after her unattended coal fire had died down.
While renting a room in the Mariner's Inn by the Thames, she met Ethan Chandler with whom she formed an intimate relationship despite her failing health thanks to the onset of consumption. She continued to work as a prostitute and accepted a naked modeling job offered by Dorian Gray, with whom she had sex after discovering that he was not afraid of her illness.
Ethan and Brona went to the Grand Guignol Theatre, where they met Dorian Gray and Vanessa Ives. Apparently upset by Ethan and Vanessa's relationship (which she perceived as more than a collegial friendship), she left running and, when confronted by Ethan, proceeded to dump him, calling herself a living skeleton. Shortly thereafter, she collapsed on the street, coughing up blood where she fell.
Although Brona renounced her words to Ethan the next morning, her illness was getting rapidly worse. Ethan called upon Doctor Victor Frankenstein in an effort to save her life, but Victor knew she was beyond his help. Instead, he saw a different use for her: Brona would be the "raw materials" with which he could construct a bride for his Creature. While Ethan went to fetch some water, Frankenstein sped Brona's passing by suffocating her with a pillow. When Ethan returned, he told him that Brona had died gracefully. He offered to see to the removal of the body once Ethan had grieved for her. Brona's corpse was later moved to Frankenstein's laboratory, where he showed her to the Creature, who seemed pleased with the appearance of his bride-to-be. Victor then began the surgical procedures which will allow for her re-animation.
Victor stored Brona's body, with the assistance of the Creature, in vat of formaldehyde to keep her fresh while awaiting a suitable storm to provide an electrical charge. During a thunderstorm, they prepared for Brona's revival, opening a roof hatch and setting Victor's equipment to conduct an electrical surge. Though the first strike of lightning seemed unsuccessful, Brona revived after a moment of silence and crawled from the bottom of the tub to stand upright, naked and confused.
Unable to speak, and seeming to have no memory of her life before death, Brona was left by the Creature under the care of Victor, who in opposition to the Creature's want to read poetry to her, claimed that he must teach her language again. After the Creature left, Victor was surprised when Brona uttered words in English, and even more extraordinarily, had lost her Irish accent to be replaced by an English one.
Eventually, Lily decided to take revenge on the men she despised. She met Dorian Gray during the ball he threw for Angelique, and after the latter died, she joined Dorian and abandoned Victor in order to set in motion her plan of a woman revolution.
She and Dorian rescued Justine from captivity to become the first of their followers. Soon the pair had increased the numbers further, drawing a much larger group of women to them from the dispossessed and scorned ladies of the night. These Lily then inspired to find unfaithful men, and cut off their right hands, but Dorian by this point had grown bored of Lily's machinations and indulged in a temporary alliance with Victor to have her moved into the doctor's care. Together they had her taken to Bedlam where Victor, with the help of Dr. Henry Jekyll sought to tame her rage with the treatments they had been developing together.
Powers and Abilities
- Enhanced Strength: Lily has been shown to possess strength enhanced beyond human norms.
- Enhanced Durability: Lily has withstood being shot with little to no discomfort.
- Immortality: The process used to resurrect Brona has allegedly rendered her immortal.
Ethan Chandler: Brona?
Brona Croft: It's Gaelic.
Ethan Chandler: What does it mean?
Brona Croft: Sadness
Proteus: Enjoy the fairy lights.
Brona Croft: I always do.
Lily: What in God's name do you want of me?
Creature: What I want I cannot have. You are incapable of it
Lily: Yes I know. You want to walk in the village and hold my hand. And when people are cruel you want me to love you even more. Do I hurt you? You pathetic creature. How can you imagine that I could care for you? Does that face belong alongside this? Doesn't the world smile on us? Don't we make a beautiful couple "thee and me"? Should we wander the pastures and recite your fucking poetry to the fucking cows? You are blind; like all other men.
Creature: And you're unlike all other women. (charging at her)
Lily: (shoving the Creature away forcefully) You tell me how. We flatter our men with our pain. We bow before them. We make ourselves dolls for their amusement. We lose our dignity in corsets and high shoes and gossip and the slavery of marriage. And our reward for this service? The back of the hand ... the face turned to the pillow. The bloody aching cunt as you force us onto your beds to take your fat heaving bodies! (now enraged) You drag us into the alleys my lad and cram yourselves into our mouths for 2 bob... when you're not beating us senseless! When we're not bloody from the eyes and the mouth and the ass and the cunt! (throwing the Creature to the floor and then suddenly calm and soft spoken) Never again will I kneel to any man. Now they shall kneel to me. As you do monster. My monster. My beautiful corpse. How clever he's been, our creator. But our little god... has brought forth not angels. But demons. Thee and me. And what should we do with this power, undead thing? You're a thoughtful man, a philosopher even, so tell me, why do we exist? Why have we been chosen? Tell me.
Creature: I don't know.
Lily: Is it to suffer?
Lily: Must it be?
Creature: How can it be other? We long for that we can not have.
Lily: Women? I'll bring you a dozen we can fuck them together. Me? Then you shall have me. I want you. I want a man unlike all other men. My brother, my equal. I'll take you by this beautiful white, dead hand and lead you to my bed right now. I'll bleed for you. I'll love you, for your sadness, and your poetry and your passion and your rage and your infinite, luxurious ugliness. I'll lick your sins away. And when Victor comes home, we'll put our hands around his throat together, and watch him die. And then this will be our home. And then? What then, undead thing? We were created to rule, my love. And the blood of mankind will water our garden. Us and our kin, and our children, and our generations. We are the conquerors. We are the pure blood. We are steel and sinew both. We are the next 1000 years. We are the dead. No being who ever was or will be shall love you like I do.
Lily: (still waltzing) Victor! How lovely to see you!
Dorian Gray: Good evening, Doctor.
Victor Frankenstein: Stop it.
(Lily and Dorian stop waltzing)
Lily: Cousin, how you look. Are you quite all right?
Dorian Gray: Would you like to sit down?
Victor Frankenstein: Spare me your gallantry. Lily, you must come home.
Lily: I am home, darling.
Dorian Gray: Really, Doctor (scoffs) Lily's not a girl for tenement garrets, now, is she? On the South Bank, no less.
Lily: Mmm. (laughs)
(Victor pulls out a gun)
Dorian Gray: Oh!
Lily: (laughs mockingly) Well, there's gallantry!
Dorian Gray: Who did you have in mind to shoot?
Victor Frankenstein: (shouting) Stop it! (pleadingly) Please come back, Lily. I love you. We can make it our home again, I promise.
Lily: Our bed in the storm, you mean? Oh... You're too sweet. That night I took your awkward virginity. (to Dorian) All thumbs he was. (to Victor) How trembling and terrified.
Victor Frankenstein (humiliated) Stop it.
Lily: Like a grubby little boy cramming his hand into the sweet jar.
(Victor shoots Lily in the chest. Gasping and shocked he rushes to her)
Lily: (completely unaffected) Please, Creator... you made me too well for that.
(Victor is shocked to learn that Lily knows the truth of her creation)
Lily: Oh, yes, I know. Always have. You were so... sublimely malleable.
(Dorian fingers Lily's wound and licks the blood off, smiling at Victor. Victor then shoots Dorian)
Dorian Gray: (unaffected) You'll have to do better than that, sport.
Lily: Shall we kill him?
Dorian Gray: They're made for killing.
Dorian Gray: I've experienced so many sensations over the years... but never one precisely like this. Complete supremacy.
Lily: Cruelty even.
Dorian Gray: Ascendancy.
Lily: Conquest. And him? Shall we murder him right now?
Dorian Gray: Entirely up to you, darling.
Lily: No. He might still prove useful to us. Let him live. Let him live with what he has created... a master race. A race of immortals, meant to command. Soon, he will kneel to us.
Dorian Gray: They all will.
Lily: When our day has come... you will know terror. Until then, little man... live with the knowledge of what you have spawned. And suffer.
Lily: You mustn't be here. There's nothing here for you.
Victor Frankenstein: Where you go, I belong.
Lily: God help you if you follow my path, Victor. Take your romance and your memories, which are a most kind fiction, and go.
Victor Frankenstein: No. I must save you from all of this, one way or another. You're my responsibility. I created you.
Lily: I need no man to save me. And I think, in a way, I created you more than you created me. First love, Victor. You will recover. Please don't come here again. You will not like what I am becoming.
Lily: I almost feel sorry for them. So predictable in their fascinations. All men are utter slaves to their desires.
Justine: Even Dorian?
Lily: Dorian is an exceptional creature.
Justine: He's a man.
Lily: But unlike all others.
Justine: I've never known a man who didn't want to fuck me or beat me. Can you say different?
Lily: Well, I knew one. A time ago, this was. An American, in fact. He was different.
Justine: What happened to him?
Lily: It's more what happened to me. (chuckles) Eventful...has my life been.
Justine: They think as you do, the suffragettes.
Lily : No. Our enemies are the same but they seek equality.
Justine: And we?
Lily : Mastery. And they're all so awfully clamorous. All this marching around in public and waving placards. That's not it. How do you accomplish anything in this life? By craft. By stealth. By poison. By the throat quietly slit in the dead of the night. By the careful and silent accumulation of power.
Justine: And when you have that power?
Lily: Well, what do you do when you've assembled an army? You go to war.
Lily: Liberty is a bitch who must be bedded on a mattress of corpses.
Lily: We are not women who crawl. We are not women who kneel. And for this we will be branded radicals. Revolutionists. Women who are strong, and refuse to be degraded, and choose to protect themselves, are called monsters. That is the world's crime, not ours.
Lily: Please know that the days a good woman will have to undergo such indignity is almost passed. We will not have to suffer, our children to starve, and freeze, and die dishonored on cold hills. We will not be hungry forever. We will rise. And know that your daughter rests in good company
- Ebb Tide