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Pip was so named by November Terra, who encountered the cat while starving to death in an alley. Nova's telepathy enabled her to read the cat's mind, which she used as a form of practice. Pip thought of Nova as a "big hairless cat".
Nova eventually gained the resolve to fight back against her situation, stealing food from a store to feed herself and Pip. However, she was eventually enslaved by Fagin. She begged him to allow her to leave the compound so she could visit Pip, but Fagin would never allow her to do so.