The origin of Lorna Dane starts with Magnus, the man who would later be known as Magneto, the mutant master of magnetism. At some point after his wife Magda had abandoned him in horror over his uncanny magnetic abilities, Magnus had an affair with a married woman named Suzanna. It’s not known for how long the affair lasted, whether they only dated once or several times, but it nevertheless resulted in a pregnancy. Suzanna decided that she would pass the child off as the offspring of her husband Arnold, a commercial pilot, a deception which appears to have been agreeable to Magneto. As Lorna grew and unusual things started to occur around her, Arnold became suspicious and had a DNA test conducted, confirming that she was not his daughter. Arnold decided to confront his wife while they were aboard a plane he was flying Las Vegas and a heated argument erupted. A three year old Lorna Dane awoke to her “parents” loudly arguing over her and became upset. This trauma catalyzed the manifestation of her own inherited magnetic powers and she blew apart the plane, turning her hair brown hair green and seemingly killing her mother and her husband.

A short time later, Lorna's biological father Magneto and his associate Mastermind arrived on the scene, having sensed her magnetic energy. Feeling Lorna would benefit from a safer, more normal environment, Magneto had Mastermind wipe Lorna's memories of both the crash and her mother, vowing that he would one day return for her when she was ready for the life he offered. Later claims would posit that Mastermind's early manipulations were responsible for Lorna's instability as she grew older. [X-Factor (1st series) #243]

Now being an orphan, Lorna was taken in by her closest relatives, or least the people who were thought to be, for they happened to be the sister and brother-in-law to the husband of Lorna’s mother. Once they officially adopted her, Lorna also received their last name "Dane." Lorna grew up unaware of her true parentage and led a relatively normal life, except for her naturally green hair. To avoid unwanted attention, her parents forced her to dye it brown at all times. [X-Men (1st series) #52]

Lorna spent her childhood somewhere in the mid-western region of the United States, and probably would be still living there if not for the hypnotist Mesmero. The mutant illusionist was seemingly working for Magneto and recruiting an entire army. Lorna was one of many mutants who responded to a technical summons call to San Francisco. However, she almost wouldn’t have reached her destination, for in her enthralled state she failed to notice the traffic. Fortunately, Iceman of the X-Men recognized the beautiful young woman and rescued her from being run over by an approaching car. The shock of nearly dying snapped Lorna out of the hypnosis.

Note: Despite Magneto's earlier claims that he would return for Lorna, it remains unclear whether the Magneto in Polaris' introduction was in fact Magneto. For more on this read our Polaris: Powers and Heritage article.

Dazed and confused, she was taken to Xavier’s mansion by Bobby, who was more than attracted to her. The other X-Men weren't too fond of Iceman jeopardizing their whole operation by taking a stranger to their home, but they weren’t as grim when Lorna turned out to be a mutant herself. Not only did Cerebro react to her presence, but her true hair color was also revealed when she took a shower, washing out the brown dye.

While the other X-Men investigated the happenings in San Francisco, Iceman was assigned to watch over their houseguest. However, the mansion was soon invaded by some of Mesmero’s forces, who kidnapped both Iceman and Lorna. In the villain’s base, Lorna was placed in a mutant energy stimulator, which reactivated her dormant mutant powers of magnetism. When she emerged from the machine, Lorna was no longer plain Lorna Dane, but M-2, Magneto the Second. Mesmero easily convinced her that she was Magneto’s daughter, since for Lorna everything made perfect sense. Having only just learned of her being adopted, Lorna felt an instant connection to Magneto, and having a mutant terrorist for a father also provided an explanation for her parents' evasive behavior regarding the subject of her adoption.

When the X-Men arrived on the scene, Lorna was torn between the friendly people she had just met and a father she never knew. A bit hesitant, she eventually sided with Magneto and the X-Men fled, as they had no chance to defeat the assembled might of Mesmero’s army. Later that day, though, Cyclops came up with the cover identity of “Eric the Red“ and returned to the complex in disguise to infiltrate Mesmero’s organization. As such, he had several chances to talk to Lorna and make her see the wrongness of Mesmero’s plans.

Meanwhile, Iceman visited Lorna’s adoptive parents to research the “truth” about Lorna’s heritage. From them, he learned about the plane crash and that Lorna’s biological parents had died. After all, they hadn't known of the affair between Magneto and Lorna’s mother. When the X-Men launched another attack, aided by their mole, Cyclops, Bobby filled in Lorna on what he had learned. Lorna quickly believed everything Iceman told her at face value, as she wanted to believe she was not the daughter of Magneto, as their brief time together had convinced her of his evil nature. She quickly switched sides and, though still inexperienced in the use of her powers, did her best to help dismantling Mesmero’s organization. [X-Men (1st series) #49-52]

Iceman had romantic feelings for the green-haired mutant and, at first, Lorna seemed to return his affections. Not sure whether she was cut out for superhero life, she decided against joining the X-Men but nevertheless moved into an apartment in Manhattan to be close by. She couldn’t have picked a worse time, though, for it was right then that the mutant-hunting Sentinels were reactivated. Lorna was among the first targets of the giant robots and, in full shock, she didn't even fight back when she was captured by them and taken to the Sentinels' base. It was there that she first met Cyclops' younger brother, Alex Summers, aka Havok, who too had been captured. Alex and Lorna hit off well right from the start, a fact that Larry Trask, the Sentinels' commander, used to his advantage. By threatening to torture Lorna, he blackmailed Havok into helping him. [X-Men (1st series) #57-58]

Before long, though, the X-Men came to the rescue and the Sentinel base was shut down. Having needed to be saved already for the second time, Lorna realized that she couldn’t stand by the sidelines anymore and fully joined the X-Men. Partially, though, her decision might have been influenced by her growing attraction to Havok as well. [X-Men (1st series) #60-61]

Not as experienced as the rest of the group, Alex and Lorna found themselves in a similar position. They were given the easier tasks or completely left out of missions when they seemed too dangerous. This only strengthened their bond and their friendship soon grew into love. Iceman, however, had trouble accepting Alex and Lorna as an item and felt cheated. After all, it had been he who had introduced Lorna to the X-Men and he felt like he had first rights. More often than not would the hotheaded youth cause fights with Alex over Lorna, and he even temporarily quit the team because he couldn’t stand seeing them together all the time. [X-Men (1st series) #66, X-Men (2nd series) #94]