|“||Mary's kind of like, a shaman, you know? A spiritual leader. Anyway, she knows lots of stuff, and so she pretty much runs things around here.||”|
–Meadow on Mary Hightower, Everlost, p. 82
At first, we only know her as Mary. Mary is the name she adopted for herself when she was unable to remember her real name from the living world. She picked it because it sounded proper and motherly.
She got the second name of Hightower because she was the first person who "dared to ascend." She was the first person to step foot in the Everlost version of the Twin Towers. She was the first to climb the stairs and stake a claim.
As the series goes on, she receives many more names. In fact, she has more names then any other character. Some of them include....
- Mary Hightower (her full name of Everlost)
- Miss Mary (the younger children in her care call her this)
- Megan Mary McGill (her real full name)
- Mary, Queen of Snots (what her enemies call her)
- The Sky Witch (some Afterlights call her this, especially in Book 2)
- The Eastern Witch (Jix calls her this)
Ending the WorldEdit
Mary believes that being in Everlost is a divine blessing, not an accident. To her, routines are good, as they keep Afterlights busy and they are simple. She wants to completely obliterate the living world, bringing everything loved, thus worth keeping, into Everlost, along with every single person under the age of seventeen (seventeen-year-olds and up cannot get lost on the way to the light).
Her Writings Edit
While Mary has set herself up as the number one authority on all things Everlost, it's shown throughout the series that her writing is filled with misinformation or deliberate gaps in information. At the end of Chapter 3 of Everlost, it's mentioned that on the subject of monsters, Mary Hightower is silent.
Sorta Dead Edit
The short excerpt readers have from this book is provided at the end of Chapter 2 of Everlost. It contains the first mention of the term Greensoul. Based on this small window into the contents of Sorta Dead, a reader could venture to conclude that the book is about the basics of Everlost, or at the very least is meant to be read by new arrivals.
Tips For Taps Edit
First mentioned at the beginning of Chapter 3 of Everlost, Tips for Taps is clearly a book about the basics of Everlost that is directed at Greensouls. In Chapter 7 we learn that the book has at least three hundred pages and that it is painstakingly handwritten with perfect penmanship.
Absence of Adults in Everlost Edit
While it's unknown which of Mary's books this excerpt comes from, her writing definitively points out that no adults have ever crossed into Everlost and that the reason they haven't is because they never get lost on their way to the light. Adults always feel like they know where they're going. This writing is located at the end of Chapter 3 of Everlost.
The Gravity of Gravity Edit
Mentioned at the end of Chapter 4 of Everlost, it's clear that this work is about sinking towards the center of the earth, otherwise known as "gravity fatigue." The excerpt of this work suggests that the souls at the center of the earth are helping to keep the earth "alive and green." Whether or not this is true, or merely something Mary believes, is unclear.
Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Vortexes but Were Afraid to Ask Edit
Referenced by Mary Hightower in Chapter 5 of Everlost when she tells Speedo about a silver Jaguar, it's clear that this book is about vortexes. According to Mary, had Speedo read the book then he would've known that sunspots create portals between the living world and Everlost, allowing objects to pass through them into Everlost.
Spectral Visions: An Afterlight’s Guide to Looking One’s Best Edit
With an excerpt from this work included at the end of Chapter 5 of Everlost, it's clear that this book is meant to offer insight into the way an Afterlight's image is cultivated. If you forget what you look like, you're bound to end up looking strange.
Death Be Not Dull Edit
The excerpt from this work included at the end of Chapter 7 of Everlost instructs its readers to be gentle and loving with Greensouls, as they are infants in a world of hazards. They need to be nurtured and guided with a firm hand. Without proper molding, Afterlights can "distort in horrifying ways."
Terms invented by Mary HightowerEdit
- Everlost (where dead or comatose children who do not make it into the light go.)
- Dominant Reality (seeing Everlost instead of the living world)
- Criminal Arts (paranorming, ecto-ripping, skinjacking, etc.)
- Evercookies (fortune cookies that have crossed)
- Everslugs (coins)
- Gravity Fatigue (sinking toward the center of the earth)
- Vapor (a group of Afterlights)
- Cumulus (a group of Afterlights larger than a vapor)
- Thunderhead (unofficial term for a group of Afterlights larger than a cumulus)
- Greensoul (a new arrival in Everlost)
- Interlight (An Afterlight during their nine-month hibernation)