Due to the different way time worked in Faerie, Ash had aged to around thirteen mortal years of age by 2012. At one point, he was taken from his mother by the Unseelie King and taken to his Court. With his royal faerie blood, his Shadowhunter blood, and demon blood, the King saw in him a potential to be a weapon against the Nephilim. The King primed him with his blood and spells to become what he had envisioned for his First Heir. The King also took a bit of his blood, taken from a cut he made on his throat, and wore it around his neck to draw power from.
His mother often bargained with the King for his return.
Ash was in the weapons room when a girl, whom he would later learn was Drusilla, appeared out of nowhere. The sight of the stranger made him wary, and he reached for his dagger and demanded that she identify herself, asking if she was a Shadowhunter. When Dru called him out for being rude, he told her his name but continued to interrogate her, immediately asking if she had been sent by his mother and if she was worried about him. Their conversation was cut short when Dru was pulled back to the mortal realm.
As part of the magic the King had woven into him, Ash had an effect on people that made them want to follow and protect him. This affected Annabel Blackthorn immensely and the woman clung to him as his guardian in the Unseelie Court, using the King's desire for the Black Volume of the Dead in her possession as a bargaining chip. The King planned to utilize spells in the book to imbue Ash with powers, some of which would weaken the Shadowhunters more than Thule's blight. Ash was also aware of his father's history with the Nephilim, so when Emma Carstairs and Julian Blackthorn came claiming to rescue him, he resisted.
When the Shadowhunters and one of the King's sons, Kieran, were captured, the King ordered Ash to execute Kieran. Ash asked for a reason, and the King only supplied that he needed to spill royal blood as soon as possible so that the magic of the Dark Artifices could start its work on him while he was still young. Ash hesitated but was urged on by the King, but before he could try, his mother arrived. Annabel, desperate to protect him and keep him away from their power-hungry plots, took him through the Portal leading to Thule.
Annabel went straight to Thule's Sebastian with Ash, hoping he would protect them there, in the world where Sebastian had won the Dark War, with the pair arriving at Thule around two years after the war.
Sebastian was initially pleased with the thought of having a son—of someone like him. He played with Ash and trained him until he grew tired of Ash. Once, when Ash made a mistake, Sebastian attempted to punish him with a whip, comparing it to how Valentine had raised him, but Sebastian's general, Jace, intervened and managed to convince Sebastian to let him train Ash instead. Ash promised to impress him and, during his training, grew attached to Jace, embittering Sebastian to the fact that, once again, someone in his life preferred Jace.
At one point, Sebastian had Ash thrown into a pit of demons to gauge his skill. During the fight, Ash's wings manifested; according to Sebastian, they were the wings of a fallen angel and had always been in him but had been drawn out of him by Thule. Sebastian continued to keep his son around, teaching him his cruel ways, and Ash passively watched Sebastian wreak havoc on what was left of the world.
Annabel's plan for Ash worked for at least five years. Eventually, however, Annabel realized that Sebastian was growing weak. Both she and Jace feared that Sebastian would someday kill Ash to regain his strength. Jace tried to warn him, and though he couldn't say the words because of his bond with Sebastian, Ash understood and grew to resent his father even more, though he pretended to be indifferent as usual. Meanwhile, when two Shadowhunters Julian and Emma from their world arrived at Thule, Annabel made a deal with them to save Ash.
Some time later, at a nightclub base used by his father, Ash found a drawing of Drusilla left behind by the Julian Blackthorn from his world and, curious about the girl, kept it for himself.
Ash was with Sebastian when he and his army confronted the rebels outside the Silent City. He silently signaled to Emma and Julian that Annabel had not betrayed them. When a battle broke out, Ash was held at gunpoint by a rebel, the werewolf Bat, and simply convinced the rebel with his words to let him go. Acknowledging that Sebastian did intend to kill him someday, Ash joined the battle in his winged form, struck Sebastian and, with a command, disarmed him, allowing Emma to kill him with the Mortal Sword, adding that he did it because he liked what she told Sebastian about their world's Clary Fairchild.
Annabel tried to pull him through the Portal back to their world but Ash, even later when Emma and Julian called for him, refused to leave Jace. Ash then unfurled his wings and flew off with Jace.
Concerned for his safety, the Queen kept his return a secret and sent them to live in a house situated on land that was neither part of the Seelie nor Unseelie Lands. In an effort to make Janus like their new home enough to stay, Ash asked his mother for a piano for him but was disappointed when Janus refused to touch it. When Janus would leave to scout the human world or stalk Clary and her loved ones, Ash would sometimes fly around their home and look out for when, or if, he would still return.
When Janus once returned from the human world with blood on his hands, having killed people at the New York Shadow Market, Ash realized that Janus still wasn't getting better despite leaving Thule. Ash became upset at Janus's typical response, bitterly remarking that Janus would leave him soon, as he only cared about Ash because of the perfect loyalty spell.
After another trip, however, Janus realized that his original plan was no longer plausible and concocted a new plan with the Queen. The new plan meant that Janus would no longer have to leave Ash and he was excited by the thought that Janus would stay and continue to train him as a Shadowhunter, dismissing Janus's warning that learning to bear runes would be painful. The two also realized that Janus's love for Ash was real as it did not fade during his long trips to the mundane world. When Janus mentioned that he was thinking about giving the world to him, Ash smiled and said that he would like that.
Personality and traits
Due to his time in Thule, Ash developed a somewhat darker personality, manifesting in what has been described as a predatory and cold look in his eyes. He is not cruel, like his father was, and is capable of love for others. Having been hurt and used by so many people in his life has taken its toll on Ash, as he mentions to Janus that he doesn't mind being hurt by him as he's used to it.
Ash seems to be especially aware of the perfect loyalty spell placed on him and exhibits bitter tendencies and insecurity about his effect on the people around him as he is unaware whether they truly care for him or are under the spell's effects.
Ash has short white-blond hair, a sharp face, pointed ears, and the typical Fairchild green eyes. He has a wide X-shaped scar on the side of his throat cut by Arawn. Ash also has black angel wings, tipped with silver, on his back that he could hide and spread out at will. He bears a resemblance to both his parents and even his aunt, Clary.
During his time in the Unseelie Court, he wore rich clothes as well as a golden metal band on his head, signifying his royal lineage. As a child, Ash was thin, looking almost unhealthy. He grew into a tall young man with broad shoulders.
Skills and abilities
- "Commands perfect love and loyalty": Due to spells cast upon him by the Unseelie King, all who come within his presence feel naturally inclined to serve and protect him, with very few able to resist the urge to drop their other priorities for him.
- Flight: As a manifestation of Lilith's blood in his system and the magic placed upon him, Ash's wings were drawn out of him in Thule.
During the course of his training with Janus, Ash grew quite attached to him because of the kindness that his father's general showed him. When Janus attempted to warn Ash to run away from Sebastian, Ash asked him to go with him and tried to comfort him when the bond he shared with Sebastian had a negative physical and emotional effect on him.After Sebastian's death, Ash refused to leave Thule without Janus and later took him back with him to his own world. Ash was pleased when Janus decided to stay and train him in Faerie and was happy to hear that Janus's affection for him had not diminished despite being separated from him for a while, as would have happened had his love for Ash been purely a result of the perfect loyalty spell.
Upon his arrival in Thule, Ash was described as having a bright expectancy on his face when meeting his father. However, this hope was soon extinguished as Ash learned more of Sebastian and experienced his father's cruelty firsthand. Ash eventually became aware that he was in danger of being killed by his father and had grown to hate him completely, though he hid it from everyone but Janus.
- Lord of Shadows (first appearance)
- Queen of Air and Darkness
- Forever Fallen
- Secrets of Blackthorn Hall (alluded to)
- The Wicked Powers (will appear)