With the ability to dissolve matter and make herself intangible, Alani Ryan uses her mutant powers to help and save people. She studies at Xavier’s Institute for Higher Learning, taking the code name Loa, and practices using her powers while on the Alpha Squadron.
Alani, a laid-back child who loves the ocean, goes surfing with and her dad, but they’re attacked by albino would-be conqueror Great White and his trained sharks. When a shark gets too close to her father, Alani’s powers kick in instinctually and she phases right through the attacking animal. Subsequently, Atlantean royalty Namor McKenzie, AKA Namor the Sub-Mariner, appears to take out the villain and then reunites them with Alani’s grandmother Alice, former roommate to Namor’s ex Betty Dean, who was watching from land. She returns an Atlantean talisman that he had gifted to Betty, one that she had discarded upon her break up. He allows her to keep the talisman. When Alice passes away, she leaves the artifact to Alani.
Loa's mutant powers allow her to phase through objects, destroying them in the process. The ability appears to work on animate and inanimate objects alike. She also acquires the Atlantean talisman that allows her to breathe underwater, but it changes her on a genetic level. A longstanding interest in Atlantean culture leads her to study its history, including some of the more mystical tomes, knowledge she comes to use in the field.
Alani becomes connected to Namor before her birth thanks to her grandmother Alice, who was friends with Namor's surface-world girlfriend Betty Dean in New York City for years. Betty discards the talisman that Namor had previously given her and Alice picks it up. The young mutant then receives the talisman when her grandmother passes away.
Loa eventually joins the X-Men along with a great deal of other young mutants. She’s placed in a group called Alpha Squad that includes Victor Borkowski, AKA Anole, Indra, Kidogo, Rubbermaid, and Network all overseen by Jean-Paul Beaubier, AKA Northstar. She, Anole, and Rockslide are often seen hanging out and she dates Josh Foley, AKA Elixir, for a time. More recently, Loa and Cessily Kincaid, AKA Mercury flirt with a relationship. Along the way, she faces off against Sentinels, Purifiers, Great White, Bastion, and beyond. She also becomes a part of New Atlantis, often fighting right alongside Namor.
Wet and Wild
After her mutant powers manifested, Ryan enrolled at the Xavier Institute for Higher Learning. She briefly roomed with Wallflower, but it didn't work out. When squads were formed after a field day competition, Loa was placed on Alpha Squad overseen by Northstar. When Northstar was killed by a mind-controlled James Howlett/Logan, AKA Wolverine, they saw the statue honoring him before the memorial service. Karma later took over as the leader of the squad.
When Wanda Maximoff, AKA Scarlet Witch, greatly reduced the mutant population on M-Day, Loa kept her powers. Shortly after, Emma Frost initiated a battle royal amongst all the remaining students and those left standing became the only squad of young X-Men, but the others were still around. Ryan was still at the school when it was bombed by Reverend William Stryker's people, the Purifiers.
Along with Blindfold, Anole, Nezhno Abidemi, AKA Gentle, Megan Gwynn, AKA Pixie, Rockslide, Match and Wolf Cub, she was transported to Limbo after Belasco's return where she encountered Illyana Rasputin, AKA Magik. After surviving that and the battle for the Mutant Messiah Hope Summers—the first mutant born after M-Day—Alani moved with the others to San Francisco and the mutant nation of Utopia. She helped defend that place from rioters as well as Norman Osborn, AKA Green Goblin's Dark Avengers.
While on Utopia, Ryan was saved by Wade Wilson, AKA Deadpool, after an attack by immortal sorceress Selene who had rejuvenated the Acolytes. Later, she went into the tunnels under Utopia looking for Mercury along with Anole, Rockslide, and Max Eisenhardt, AKA Magneto. While looking through old books she found an image of Nathan Summers, AKA Cable, and Hope fighting during the Revolutionary War.
Later, Loa, Match, and Rockslide attempted to sneak food on Utopia, which was being guarded by James Proudstar, AKA Warpath. After fending off the Second Coming of Bastion, Loa, Anole, and Indra traveled to India to visit Indra's sick brother with Anna Marie, AKA Rogue, and Magneto along for the trip. The master of magnetism also wanted to investigate an odd magnetic pulse in the area as well. They soon found Luz, one of the Children of the Vault, who was being chased by Sentinels. Alani used her powers to pass right through the head of a Sentinel, destroying it. Later, the mutants battled the Children of the Vault when their city, the Corridor crashed into Mumbai. Loa proved instrumental in sending the Corridor back where it came from.
Meanwhile, after New Atlantis was built to solidify not just Utopia, but relations between mutants and Atlanteans, Loa helped deliver some information to Namor and proved not just well-informed of the place's history, but also quite deductive in her insights. She proved crucial in Atlantis' victory over the Aqueos, underwater vampires. During the battle, Alani's breathing helmet broke, but the talisman around her neck gave her the ability to breathe under water.
After she came to understand that the medallion allowed her to breathe underwater, she returned to New Atlantis and Namor welcomed her home. Dr. Nemesis ran some tests and came to understand that her lungs became 90 percent adapted to surviving underwater. He further hypothesized that the mystic item may have reacted uniquely with her mutant genetics. Namor broke the news to her that her lungs might not be able to breathe air any longer. At that moment, skeletons reached out of the talisman and grabbed Namor, pulling him into a Hell dimension. With some unexpected help from Victor Von Doom, AKA Doctor Doom, Loa, and Abira traveled to the same place and helped get him home.
From there, Alani spent all her time underwater, often at Namor's side. She helped fend off an insurrection and went up against Attuma after he attained one of Cul Borson's hammers. Namor, Dr. Stephen Strange, AKA Doctor Strange, Lyra, Norrin Radd, AKA Silver Surfer, and Loa formed a new kind of Defenders to save the Atlanteans. Alani took an Atlantean potion to breathe on land once more for the mission. She can now breathe on land all the time. It's unclear which side Loa took during the schism between Scott Summers, AKA Cyclops, and Wolverine, but she did join the Avengers Academy for a time. She perished during an attack involving Nate Grey, AKA X-Man. She was later resurrected on the new mutant nation of Krakoa. Eventually, she joined a squad lead by Kurt Wagner, AKA Nightcrawler, that also included DJ, Clarice Ferguson, AKA Blink, and Pixie.
Loa asked Mercury to be her date to the Hellfire Gala, but she got overly excited and her powers fritzed out a bit. David Haller, AKA Legion, attempted to let them meet mentally, but that resulted in the Patchwork Man being let loose in the physical world and some serious awkwardness between the two young women. Afterwards, the younger X-people were encouraged to throw the Cruciball by Onslaught, who wanted them to all kill each other after he had already deleted the back-ups that allowed for mutant resurrection. Loa continued to live on Krakoa and attended the second annual Hellfire Gala.