Old Lace (often nicknamed as "OL" or simply "Lace") is a fictional character in Runaways. She was created by Brian K. Vaughan and artist Adrian Alphona, and debuted in Runaways vol. 1 #2, attacking the other characters. Old Lace was given her name to match the film of the same name. Old Lace, nicknamed "OL" by Gert, had originally belonged to Gert. The dinosaur was genetically engineered to obey all of Gert's commands, meaning whenever Gert thought or felt something, so would the dinosaur. Initially believed to be a velociraptor, she is later correctly identified as a deinonychus by Victor. A main difficulty in keeping Old Lace was to accept the fact that whenever Old Lace had a cut, or was injured (which is often), Gert would have to endure its pain. Known for being one of the very few savior pets, Old Lace is known for being the only unique regular dinosaur character in the Marvel Universe. After Gert's death, Old Lace currently obeys the command of Chase Stein.
Old Lace was genetically engineered in the 87th century, the project being commissioned by Dale and Stacey Yorkes, the parents of Gertrude. The designer also put in several character traits which included a tele-empathic bond with Gert Yorkes as well as being incapable of harming any of her immediate family. Old Lace was originally intended to be part of Gert's inheritance, for when her parents died. Even though Old Lace has a telepathic bond with Chase now. She has been shown to have some free will. This is shown when Chase ties Nico up and Old Lace growls and tries to stop Chase. Old Lace has a telepathic bond with Gert. This lets her feel each others' thoughts and pain, and allows Old Lace to act on Gert's emotions. Old Lace got her name from Gert Yorkes, who had temporarily been using "Arsenic" as her codename (essentially making the pair Arsenic and Old Lace, after the play and film of the same name). Though Gertrude later dropped the codename after deciding that some things from her parents (such as her real name) were worth keeping, Old Lace's name stuck.
Seconds before Gert's death, she was able to pass her telepathic link with Old Lace to her boyfriend Chase Stein, since her death would have killed Lace as well via their telepathic link. Chase, after his girlfriend's death, has been using Old Lace in a much more angry and aggressive manner, even going so far as to command Old Lace to rip an enemy's throat out; though eventually was called off by Chase after being scolded by Nico. The deinonychus later went on to follow Chase but when ordered to hurt Karolina as well as Nico, Old Lace showed her own will by greeting them warmly.
Dead End KidsEdit
Old Lace, now belonging to Chase Stein
Gert discovered that she had a telepathic bond to Old Lace when the dinosaur halted from devouring the runaways because Gert yelled out "NO!" in fear. In one of the runaways' early encounters with the Pride, Gert also discovered she had an empathic bond to Old Lace when she experienced the same pain Old Lace felt. Gert's telepathic bond to Old Lace allowed her to directly communicate with the dinosaur and command it to do anything she wished. The bond worked both ways, enabling Old Lace to transfer her thoughts directly to Gert, but Old Lace could not give commands to Gert in the same fashion. Old Lace was unconditionally loyal to Gert, even to the point of fighting against the team; Old Lace once lashed out at Nico without Gert's orders when Gert and Nico had their brief falling out. Gert and Old Lace's empathic bond was beneficial in that whenever one was healed, the other would always get better. However, it also made each known to injuries they wouldn't normally be grossly affected by. For example, in Runaways volume 2, issue 7, Gert refuses to fight Swarm because she is allergic to bee stings and posits that even one sting on Old Lace could end the both of them.
Old Lace can also be found in the Marvel Zombies vs. The Army of Darkness book. In several panels, you see the zombified Runaways feeding upon Old Lace while a group of zombies chases down Blob.