Note: For the original Golden Age villainess with a Rose/Thorn split personality, see: Rose Canton.
For the Bronze-Modern Age heroine with a Rose/Thorn split personality, see: Thorn.
A young girl named Rose Canton lost her mother at an early age and was later institutionalized for psychological trauma after her father met his death under suspicious circumstances. At age 15, Rose was released from the institution and sent to live with her aunt, where she tried to return to a normal life and attend high school. But the shy Rose soon discovered that her life was anything but normal -- she now had a violent split-personality named Thorn, who played by her own rules and would stop at nothing to find out what really happened to their father and punish those responsible.
The rebooted Rose and Thorn was created in 2012 by writer Tom Taylor and artist Neil Googe and made her first appearance under the new National Comics imprint.
The latest Rose and Thorn is a new interpretation of DC's classic Rose/Thorn split personality character who dates back to Golden Age. The first Rose and Thorn shared the name of Rose Canton, but was a villain of the original Flash (Jay Garrick) of DC's now-erased Earth-2 reality. This character is officially deceased. The second Rose and Thorn was named Rhosyn Forrest and became a heroine of DC's Earth-1 reality. Both earlier versions of the character already had complex histories and were grown women rather than teenagers.
The new Rose and Thorn once again has the name of Rose Canton, but is only a teenager and her alter-ego, Thorn, has no specific costume, keeping in line with DC's more realistic storytelling in National Comics. Her time period has also been completely modernized, with internet, smart phones, and social networking sites prominently featured in her story.
Major Story Arcs
One morning Rose Canton, a bright but shy high school girl, awoke from a childhood dream to find herself covered in blood, though it was apparently not her own. As she showered herself off, she discovered a tattoo on the small of her back of a rose flower surrounded by a script that read 'Thorn.' The tattoo had not been there prior to that morning and she had no recollection of how it got there. Rose then went downstairs to talk to her aunt Cate before going to school, but decided not to mention the blood or the tattoo to her aunt.
On the way to school Rose ran into a popular girl named Skye, who usually ignored or even insulted her. However, on this occasion Skye actually seemed happy to see Rose, calling her 'Thorn' and and talking about what they had both done the night before. Rose learned that she had somehow made out with Troy, Skye's ex-boyfriend, whom Rose harbored a crush on but was too shy to speak to. Troy does not arrive at school that morning, prompting Rose to worry.
In biology class later that day, a pair of girls showed Rose a photo of her making out with Troy to prove that it had happened. Upon seeing the photo, the word 'MINE' in bloody letters flashed repeatedly before Rose's eyes, causing her to faint. Due to her collapse Rose was dismissed from school early, so she decided to seek answers to what had happened the night before. On a taxi ride to Troy's house, Rose used her mobile phone to check her 'Facelook' social networking page and discovered a friend invitation from 'Thorn' -- a girl who looked exactly like Rose and who had numerous photos of herself in situations that Rose had no memory of.
Once at Troy's house, Rose suddenly had memories of getting her tattoo from Troy's father. Troy's father then appeared at the door, seeming very frightened of her and calling her 'Thorn.' As he led her inside, Rose had another memory of herself overpowering Troy's father, tying him to a chair, and carving the word 'MINE' into his chest with a knife. She then noticed that his chest was bandaged while he nervously said that he needed more time to get her "the names." He asked if she knew where his son was and begged her not to harm him.
Bewildered and traumatized, Rose fled Troy's home and suffered another blackout, waking up in her own bed to a video message from 'Thorn.' Rose learned that Thorn was in fact her own, darker, split personality, who intended to hunt down the people involved with her father and discover exactly what happened to him. Thorn also made it clear that she would not let Rose stand in her way. Though disturbed by this turn of events, Rose agreed to assist Thorn in her quest for revenge.