- "I am not going to sit here and lament my human life with you, I do not care any more, do you not understand, that girl is gone. Stop trying to save my soul; we are vampires, brother, we have no soul to save. We gave it up"
- —Lillian to Edward
As a human, Lillian was quite generous and warm as a person, it was her slow but extreme change in personality as a vampire that led Edward to be sure that the conversion to a vampire meant that one lost their soul. Lillian was quite vulnerable emotionally. Especially after the death of her mother and twin brother (Edward) during the outbreaks of the Spanish influenza and the abuse she faced after. Though this was true, she was tough, and would never allow anyone to know they had hurt her. After the birth of her son, Jonah, it became clear that she was capable of a lot of love and that she was extremely caring.
- "Lillian is self destructive; she might care somewhere deep down in there, but she doesn’t think she does, which is probably more dangerous. She would do anything to anyone, as long as it was to her benefit. She can control the thoughts of anyone, which in her hands can be deadly."
- —Edward on Lillian.
As a vampire, Lillian is described by most as callous, manipulative, paranoid, uncaring, brutal, controlling, cruel, untrustworthy, unpredictable, stubborn and self-destructive. Lillian is completely different to how she was as a human. This is partially a result of her strong belief that vampires have no soul. While with the Cullens her wild tendencies lessened, Lillian still has shown these negative traits.
Lillian is extremely paranoid; she is convinced that almost everyone is out to get her or is going to double cross her at some point, this is a bi-product of her personal tendency to double cross anyone who tries to help/work with her. As a result of this paranoia she often feels has to hide aspects of herself from everyone, and construct elaborate plans in order to ensure success in her endeavors. This generally includes making several backup plans as well as even more backup backup plans, and et cetera. As a direct result of her falseness around people it is hard to know what her actual personality is, as she keeps anything personal so guarded. Edward Cullen, Lillian’s biological brother, as well as her adoptive family are perhaps among the only people who have had a glimpse of her true self, if only because they have lived with her so long in comparison to all of her “allies”.
Due to her manipulative tendencies, Lillian has shown herself to be a rather good actress, aiding her in pretending to be different to each person she meets, based on what she believes they will respond to best. For instance, Lillian would sometimes pretend to be a charming to her victims, or otherwise a damsel in distress. Some of her more ambitious projects have led to her having to sustain a “character” for several years. To the students of Forks High School, she is known as The Cullens’ rebellious and bitchy sister, though to most adults she is seen as a surprisingly calm, collected and mature student for her age. She uses her ability to trick people in this way, to make sure no situation ever gets out of her control. An extension of this is the fact that she has used her telepathy to create several mental “walls” blocking of parts of her memory and thoughts from other telepaths.
- "One way or another, brother, we’re all damned. Might as well have fun on the ride down to hell."
- — Lillian teasing Edward.
Her biological brother, Edward, has often described his sister as “self-destructive”, indicating that he, personally, believes that she knows what she is doing is wrong. He was driven to believe that no vampires had souls by the actions of Lillian throughout the centuries, as well as her rejection to each of his offers to help her change, though this was to be expected, due to her unwavering stubbornness. Edward, when explaining Lillian’s power to Bella, pointed out that even if she did have a sense of remorse for her past crimes buried deep down somewhere, she personally refuses to acknowledge it, and thus, it might as well not exist. Lillian responds to any suggestion of a possible “redemption” for herself she responds with a callous remark of some kind, and explains that she doesn’t care.
During Lillian’s nomadic years, as well as her brief time with the Volturi guard, Lillian was very ruthless. She showed a complete lack of care for human lives, viewing them as just playthings. As a result, she would often toy with humans before killing them, sometimes even just ruining their lives and leaving them to live with the result of it. Her favourite trick was murdering a group of people and, using her power, convincing a human that they had committed the murders themselves, planting graphic memories of the killings in their mind. During this time, Lillian ignored the part of herself that dealt with morality, leading to the illusion of soullessness.
Though behind this cruel, ‘evil’ exterior, their lies a great deal of loyalty. While she is just as likely to double-cross her own family to get out on top she would never let harm come to them. Also, while she claims to have no feelings at all, she still holds a great fondness to the memory of her husband and son. Even through her supposed “soulless” days, Lillian kept a small, old-fashioned photograph of her family as her, arguably, most valued possession, despite its lack of monetary value. While Lillian can be a bitch, and certainly was a horrible, even maybe evil, person in her day, Lillian is often well intentioned. Her questionable methods and psychological state are easily seen as a direct result from her past trauma and current paranoia. Once you become in her close circle of people she is loyal to, she has been known to be quite pleasent, showing a glimmer of the former self, behind layers and layers of pretense.
- "I’ll always be five steps ahead of you, Edward, I always have a contingency plan, a failsafe, if you will. There will always be a plan b, and c and d, et cetera, et cetera... Remember that, you’ll only catch me if I want to be caught. "
- —Lillian on her “failsafes”.
Lillian was very good at manipulating people, even before she had her powers. She often uses this in order to manipulate people in a way that's less obvious than her powers are.
Lillian is considered to be very beautiful.
Lillian has the same basic powers as most vampires, these include;
- Excelerated speed
- Strong senses (touch, hearing, smell, etc.)
- Flexibility and Agility
She has also developed exceptional self-control, though has not always used it. She learnt he control from her brother and his “father” Carlisle Cullen, during her originally failed attempt to live the same life as them. Over the years after she has lived a life of violence, not untilising this control, whilst on the run form the vampires known as the Volturi.
- "Lillian has her own talent, just like I can read thoughts, Lillian can manipulate them. She can persuade anyone to do anything for her, to forget things, to remember things that didn’t happen she could even make someone kill for her."
- —Edward explaining Lillian’s skill.
Lillian’s special talent is thought/mental manipulation, though this started from humble beginnings, with Lillian only able to influence the thoughts of others, over the years Lillian has endeavoured to amplify her power’s potential. By the time she returned to the Cullens in the 1980s, her mental manipulation had become quite formidable. Lillian was now able to make people forget things, remember things that had never happened, manipulate people into agreeing with her unconditionally, or change their veiws and persuade people to do horrible things that they would usually be totally opposed to.
As a result she has very much caught the eye of the Volturi, in particular Aro, for obvious reasons. With both Chelsea and Lillian, Aro could control everyone. He could have complete, unconditional support form all of his guard, as well as his “brothers”. Furthermore, there would be no need to ask anyone to join the Volturi, he would just have to instruct Lillian to “have a word” with anyone and get unconditional, loyal support from them as well. And with Chelsea, she could ensure that Lillian would remain content with staying at Volterra. However, ironically, to do away with the idea of asking for loyalty, he would first have to gain the loyalty of Ms Matthews (as she was at the time). Her continued refusal to join up has led to her being constantly tracked by the Italian coven, which has meant that Lillian had had to lead a nomadic life to evade capture.As well as the ability to control others, she has quite successfully managed to circumvent the ability of her brother. Lillian has been described to have a way of “masking” thoughts that she doesn’t want her brother to know about using his telepathy. While this was pretty basic at first, due to her paranoid personality she has become much more proficient at it. This means that now has mental “walls”, which hide memories she doesn't want other telepaths to find, block certain memories and thoughts even from Aro. This has been very useful over the years as Lillian is possibly the only person, other than Bella, who can wilfully deceive Aro.