|“||I was born to be a warrior, and I was born to be with her. Tell me how to reconcile the two, because I cannot!||”|
For a long time, Edmund was nonchalant and carefree, often looking for adventure and finding ways to defy and infuriate his superiors. Because of his natural good looks, Edmund was also quite the ladies' man, a fact he knew and enjoyed. When he was fourteen, Edmund slew his first demon, and its spirit was kept in a Pyxis for him to keep.
In 1857, during an attempt between the Nephilim of the London Enclave and Downworlders to decide the terms of the Accords, Edmund, along with another young man older than him and Charlotte Branwell, were eavesdropping on the meeting. Edmund caught the attention of Magnus Bane and Camille Belcourt. When Edmund was told by four of his elders to not converse with Magnus Bane, Edmund made it a point to go after him after the meeting to know him.
The same evening, after a few drinks and games at White's club, Edmund and Magnus went for a walk through the streets of London and encountered an Eidolon attacking a carriage with two mundane women inside. Edmund quickly jumped into action and disbanded the demon while Magnus comforted the women. After joining Magnus at the carriage, Edmund was struck by the sight of Linette Owens. His attraction seemingly sobered him up and made him more open than he ever was before; confiding that he was a Shadowhunter and asking to see her again.
For weeks since their first encounter, Edmund courted Linette and fell deeply in love with her. The two became engaged, though a complication arose: because Linette was an heiress, she felt obligated to care for those in her estate and did not wish to Ascend to become a Shadowhunter. To be with her, Edmund would need to become a mundane himself. Though torn between the life of Shadowhunting he was born into and the woman he loves, Edmund ultimately decided that he did not want to live a life without Linette and obliged to the Law. He was soon stripped of his Marks, exiled, and made a mundane.
Edmund and Linette moved back to Wales together and started a family. For years, the couple raised their children aware of the Shadow World, knowing the Nephilim blood in them would be dominant and that they would be Sighted. They taught them to fear and despise Shadowhunters, letting them believe that they were monsters and killers to discourage them from ever wanting that life for themselves, especially necessary since the Shadowhunters periodically knocked on their doors and offered the children the opportunity.
In 1873, his middle child and only son, Will, accidentally released Marbas, the Greater Demon he had trapped in the Pyxis he took with him. Marbas went on to poison and kill his eldest daughter, Ella, who tried to protect Will.
Will, feeling guilty over his sister's death and fearful that he would bring more harm to his family, ran away to the London Institute to seek refuge and become a Shadowhunter himself. Edmund and Linette went after him in hopes of taking him back to Wales, to no avail.
Over time, Edmund turned to drinking and gambling to escape the sadness. According to his daughter Cecily, it was not Ella's death but Will's desertion that led to Edmund's undoing. This went on for at least three years, after which Edmund lost their family's house and fortune in Wales. The Herondales were then forced to move to York in North Yorkshire, England, where they were offered the Ravenscar Manor by Axel Mortmain.
In 1878, Edmund and Linette lost the last child they had when Cecily ran off to the London Institute. Unbeknownst to them, Cecily only hoped to get Will to come back to Wales with her. Eventually, Cecily grew to love the life of a Shadowhunter and began to ask Will to at least only write to them and tell them the truth of why he left.
Weeks after Cecily left, when Will planned to go after Tessa alone, Cecily made Will promise that if they survived Mortmain's plot, they would visit their parents in York, which Will agreed to. When the war against the Mortmain and the automatons finally ended, Will made good on his promise. Despite the prohibitions the Covenant placed on former Shadowhunters regarding the lives they abandoned and their children who chose to become Shadowhunters, the Consul, Charlotte Branwell, who was a good friend of Will and Cecily, allowed them to secretly see their parents.
Will and Cecily, along with Tessa and Gabriel, Portaled to Yorkshire. Both Edmund and Linette, though stunned, were pleased to see them. Edmund hugged Cecily while Linette hugged Will, and when Will introduced Tessa as his fiancée, Edmund exclaimed in surprise and concern regarding Gabriel's relation with Cecily.
Before that first reunion, the hesitant Charlotte, with her position as Consul, was convinced to allow them to see Edmund and Linette some more after that. Will and Cecily's families visited them at Wales every year for the holidays, during which Edmund would bake gingerbread—his specialty. Over the years, he and Linette got to know their in-laws and grandchildren.
In the summer of 1899, Edmund and his wife died of influenza.
Edmund was once a carefree young man, eager for adventure and thrills wherever he could find it. Being a Shadowhunter, he was able to divert his energy to hunting demons. Both Magnus and Cecily noticed how Edmund's eyes lit up in excitement when he gambled, a vice he was unable to resist as a mundane who had lost so much by the time Will left them to live the life he himself abandoned in his early adulthood.
Edmund was tall and broad-shouldered, with light blue eyes and a mass of fair hair that became streaked with gray when he grew older.
Before Linette, Edmund did not believe himself to be the kind of man who would ever love, marry, or have his heart broken by anyone. However, the very moment he laid eyes on Linette, Edmund was enamored, immediately attracted and impressed by her fierceness and bravery.
- Vampires, Scones, and Edmund Herondale
- Clockwork Prince (first mention)
- Clockwork Prince: Manga (mentioned only)
- Clockwork Princess (first appearance)
- Nothing but Shadows (mentioned only)
- The Midnight Heir (mentioned only)
- Chain of Gold (mentioned only)
- The Last Stand of the New York Institute (mentioned only)
- City of Heavenly Fire (mentioned only)